Serving in the military provides valuable skills that veterans can use for the rest of their lives, so it’s no wonder that so many former service members have gone on to run their own businesses after returning to civilian life. In fact, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has estimated that there are approximately 2.4 million veteran-owned companies in the United States, and they’re making a big impact on our country.
An Economic Force
Just as U.S. veterans have served our country as members of the military, they also help push our nation forward as entrepreneurs. The SBA’s findings show that in the United States, veterans own:
- 13 percent of finance and insurance firms
- 4 percent of mining, quarying, oil, and gas companies
- 12 percent of construction companies
- 9 percent of utility businesses
In total, about 9 percent of United States businesses are veteran-owned, contributing more than $1.14 trillion to the economy every year and employing 5.8 million people. The skills that service members develop during their time in the military give them the power to build the economy and job market as civilians.
Many people correctly assume that the skills learned through military service can directly translate to business, and research confirms it. The Syracuse University Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) reports that creativity, leadership, and willingness to take risks are all traits that translate from military service to entrepreneurship. In fact, military members who were more likely to take risks in combat were also more likely to start their own business.
Many veterans are well aware of just how useful their military training can be to their entrepreneurial pursuits, too. The IVMF confirms that 32 percent of veteran entrepreneurs felt that the classes they’d taken during their time in the military would be “of direct relevance” in operating their new business. An impressive 52 percent of service-disabled veterans said that the technological training they’d had in the military proved useful in developing their new company. When veterans decide to start a business, they’re already armed with much of the knowledge and skill that takes some entrepreneurs years to develop.
A Cycle Of Giving
When making decisions about where to spend your money, consider the fact that households with veteran entrepreneurs have more wealth than veterans who aren’t entrepreneurs. Given that veterans are also 30 percent more likely to hire other former military members, putting money towards a veteran-owned business can end up doing a lot of good for people who have served our country. If you want to support veteran entrepreneurs, the Veteran-Owned Business Directory can help you find the good or service you’re looking for right here in Pittsburgh, giving you the power to give back to the men and women who have already given so much to our nation.
Veterans who have started their own businesses do great things for our economy and community using what they learned during their active time in the military. By supporting their business, you help not only veteran entrepreneurs, but also their families and employees. Our military members have already done so much for our country, and now it’s time for us to return the favor.