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Why ‘think global, act local’ is key to Australia’s post-COVID economic recovery

The term ‘small business’ somewhat obscures the fact that these companies have a major impact on our national economy. So much so that small businesses account for a third of Australia’s GDP, make up 98% of businesses nationwide, and employ over 44% of the nation’s workforce. We’d say that’s a pretty big impact!

From family-run restaurants to friendly neighbourhood grocers, small businesses like yours (and like ours) are essential to the fabric of local communities across the country. As such, the choices we make not only as business owners but as consumers can go a long way to ensuring that, together, we bolster Australia’s economic recovery into 2021 and beyond. The key? Thinking global, but acting local. Here’s why.

What is the ‘think global, act local’ approach all about?

With its roots in environmental conservation, the phrase ‘think global, act local’ has been used across a broad range of industries and contexts since the 1980s. Originally, it described an approach to sustainability that focused on the impact of swift, individual actions, as opposed to waiting for global policy shifts and legislative changes that can often move at a glacial pace. 

Today, the ‘think global, act local’ approach has made its way into the business sector with the rapid rise of globalisation. Nowadays, businesses need to have a global mindset while still being able to adapt to the needs of different markets, countries and local communities. And it’s not just multinational companies or big businesses that this applies to; businesses of all sizes need to be adopting the ‘think global, act local’ approach. 

Why is a local-led economic recovery important?

2020 has hit many small businesses hard with recent research from the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia (COSBOA) indicating that three-quarters of small businesses have experienced a 75% decline in revenue this year. But when small businesses falter, there’s more than just jobs and profit at risk.

Many small businesses are the lifeblood of local communities. From the local baker or plumber to the corner laundromat, small businesses make something far more valuable than anything they do or sell: they help build local communities. That’s why a local-led economic recovery is essential to ensuring small business owners, employees and their communities have the products, services and support they need both now and in the years to come.

Image: Go Local First. Supporting Australian small businesses.

Supporting the ‘Go Local First’ campaign

Spearheading the local-led recovery effort is the Go Local First campaign, funded by the Federal Government and delivered by COSBOA. A call-to-action for Australians to throw their support behind local small businesses as we ‘build forward better’, the initiative encourages customers to buy from local businesses (either online or in-store) and puts the power back in the hands of consumers to create the kind of post-COVID world we know is possible.

The message is simple: when local businesses thrive, local communities thrive.

We all have the ability to help get small businesses back on their feet and there are already countless local businesses that have signed up to the campaign from restaurant owners to pharmacies and more. What this initiative perfectly demonstrates is the ‘think global, act local’ approach, by connecting the impact of targeted, individual actions on the bigger picture. So, how can your business get involved?

Three ways small businesses can adopt a ‘think global, act local approach’

If you are a small business owner and are looking for ways to enable a local-led recovery, here are four ways to get involved:

  1. Join forces with other small businesses in your community: partner with other local businesses in your neighbourhood by promoting their services, selling their products or simply leaving them a positive review on social media. A little neighbourly pride and competition with the local suburbs doesn’t hurt!
  2. Add local suppliers into your businesses’ supply chain and preferred vendors lists. This is a great way to bring local suppliers into your operations and support fellow small businesses in very meaningful ways. Even better, publish or shout out your list of suppliers on your website and social media and tell your customers how they can support them too.
  3. Shop local at every opportunity. The adage that ‘every dollar is a vote for the kind of world you want to live in’ feels especially true right now. It’s a great idea to put your money where your mouth is (and your values are!) by actively shopping from small businesses in your local community.

Now is the perfect time to embrace the ‘think global, act local’ philosophy and GO LOCAL FIRST by supporting other small businesses in any way you can. And, if you want to join the GO LOCAL FIRST campaign, visit: golocalfirst.com.au

We’re a small business, and we’re here to help yours. Get in touch with BASic Bookkeepers’ team of qualified bookkeepers and BAS agents today by giving us a call on 1300 852 575 or  submit an online inquiry here