Is Business Success Really that Important?


Business, in its various forms, has been an essential part of societies since the beginning of mankind.

Today, over 50% of U.S. GDP is generated by family businesses. Some data suggests that it’s even as high as 64%.  

In 2013 close to 90% of all businesses in the U.S. were family owned, becoming an indispensable part of our economic engine.

I don't think any of us would argue that business, or rather the success of businesses large and small, is critical to the overall health of our society. All of us benefit from successful businesses in our corners of the world, either by being employed by them or by tapping into their products and services.

Today, we’ll explore three benefits of successful businesses that build a thriving society.  


Engine for Job Creation

Did you know that family-owned businesses employ 62% of U.S. workforce? That’s an incredible number of men and women whose families are financially provided for by the means of privately owned businesses.

Not only are family-owned businesses the largest employer in the U.S, but they also generate 75% of all new jobs in our nation! All of this means that, among those who are currently looking for work, most will find employment as part of a local, family-owned business. Because family-owned businesses are the engine for job creation, the success of every single business is critical. From small towns to large cities, the health of privately owned businesses is the best indicator of the economic health of the community.


Engine for Generosity

Over 95% of family-owned businesses engage in philanthropy and some form of generous giving. Many of them do so because they seek close alignment between their organizational core values and their personal family values.

On average, each family business donates over $50,000 annually to a cause. So not only are family-owned businesses providing financial security and stability to millions of American families, but they also invest resources to help alleviate poverty, provide education, and much more.

According to the Charity Navigator, over $373 billion was given in 2015 to charitable causes. Most of that amount came from individuals and foundations. Only 3.9% came from corporations.

Without successful businesses investing resources and providing income to millions of individuals so they could, in turn, help others, many would go without the necessary help.


Engine for Idea Creation

I think you’ll agree that creation of ideas is a must for a growing and developing society. It’s no wonder that family-owned businesses own 13 percent more patents than larger firms. This data tells us that successful businesses not only contribute, but lead idea creation nationwide.

Healthy competition among successful businesses only breeds more ideas, more creation, and a forward progress.

Because family-owned businesses care about their own communities, they often partner with local schools and colleges and engage young minds in innovative and collaborative idea generation, which are designed to build more prosperous communities.

So what’s the big deal about business success you ask? Why is business survival and success so important to our society?

Because businesses, especially family-owned businesses, form the foundation for a healthy, thriving economy. They are the source of financial provision for millions of families. They are the driving engine of incredible generosity, and a force for generating ideas that propel us forward.  Successful businesses directly correlate with healthy families, healthy communities and a healthy nation.


To learn more about the Tennessee Center for Family Business contact us at or call 615-513-9028.