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Local small businesses celebrated as “backbone” of economy

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The best way to support small business in Grande Prairie is to shop local. That’s the advice of Chamber of Commerce board chair Cris Seppola-Podsada in the middle of Small Business Week.

“It could be as simple as walking downtown and popping into a store; it could be as simple as using a business service that maybe you would think you would need to go out of the city for but it turns out that you don’t. It really just simply becomes a conscious choice of, ‘am I going to support an entrepreneur who lives here in my community or not?'”

Small Business Week is celebrated across Canada every October. This year’s theme is “Digitize now: Transform your business”, as a way to encourage small and medium business owners to embrace new technologies.

Seppola-Podsada the hope is that local businesses will think more about how they can adopt a more digital approach. However, she argues small business owners are already thinking ahead.

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“They have to be nimble; they have to be competitive, and it’s really important for small businesses to be looking for ways to continue to become more effective and efficient. That’s what puts them ahead of their competition and it helps them to be more profitable.”

This week has already been a busy one with events like a Women in Business Lunch and Lunch with Rotary. The Awards of Distinction will be held Wednesday night, followed by the Business Showcase Thursday. Seppola-Podsada wants the week to be a celebration of the major role small businesses play in Grande Prairie’s economy.

“We don’t just sit back and let things happen; we’re go-getters here in the Peace region; we’re innovative, we are smart, and we don’t really like to wait for anything so if something isn’t happening that we need to happen we make it happen.”

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