While Wall Street Journal and Financial Times headlines predominantly feature Fortune 500 firms, small business fuels much of the economic growth and job creation across the globe. Entrepreneurs are not equal to small. Consider Tesla, Virgin, G Adventures, Starbucks, Facebook, and Amazon.

Today I want to feature and celebrate a unique set of entrepreneurs. In 2005, Kiva was formed by a small group of friends. In the early days, they had to exchange Premal Shah’s guitar for a logo design. Today they have built a network of 1.6 million Kiva lenders funding $1 million in loans every 3 days. 2.5 million small business owners and entrepreneurs across the world have benefited from Kiva loans.

Kiva recently reached an incredible milestone of $1 billion in lending. I have been a proud Kiva lender for many years. As an entrepreneur and an advisor to many small and mid-sized organizations, I know how challenging it can be to achieve one’s dream. Living in North America, I am very fortunate. By luck of birth, I do not face the safety, health or other issues encountered by many small business owners across the world.

Leaders in the oil and gas industry have responded to the unprecedented and unexpected increase in supply and drop in prices. Many leaders running oil services companies are entrepreneurs. Protectionism, nationalism and tariff negotiations are creating fear and uncertainty across North America and the European Union. We are experiencing seismic shifts.

Keep the faith. Entrepreneurs are tenacious. The best business leaders foster innovation in their companies. Premal and his co-founders had a vision that changed the world for 2.5 million borrowers and provided an opportunity for 1.6 million of us to make a difference.

Make the tough decisions. Change course when necessary. Be an inspiration to your staff, your peers and your communities.

“Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have.”  – Margaret Mead

To learn more or to make a loan to Kiva, please visit their website.

My clients accelerate their results – increasing profitability, leadership performance, innovation, and accountability. I would love to discuss how I might contribute to your success. Contact me today.

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