Missoula hosts small business forum


MISSOULA, Mont. - Nearly all of Montana businesses are defined as small.

In fact, one statistic at the state of Missoula commerce report said, 65% of our businesses have fewer than five employees.

The chamber's state of Missoula conference is to give small business information and help to grow and prosper.

Montana Department of Labor senior economist Barbara Wagner said most of Montana is coming out of the recession very well.

But, she said,  western and northwest Montana are much slower.

She expects sluggish growth there through 2014.

It is hard to replenish the huge numbers of good paying jobs lost in the timber and construction industries.

But the economist does see growth, different growth maybe, but growth.

"The health care industry has been growing throughout the recession, and a lot of businesses that tie into that service and manufacturing and the machinery involved in the health care industry," said Wagner, "is likely to be positive in the future. We've also seen a lot of green businesses particularly in the Missoula area."

The economist went onto say " we will have manufacturing but it's more than likely going to  be found on high tech manufacturing, which revolves around highly educated workers."

Some super bullets offered as tips for small business at the conference.

-Love what you do.

-Hire to your weaknesses.

-Use mentors.

-Work harder, smarter and closer.

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