Entrepreneurship Development Strategies
Lessons from Sam Walton and Wal-Mart Stores
Free market economies are always changing. There are winners and losers. While we might want to hang onto the past, we should focus on what we can do to grow a better today and future. Sam Walton and Walmart, Inc. revolutionized retailing in America and some would argue globally. Box stores like Wal-Mart Stores, Home Depot, etc., have challenged locally owned and operated businesses across America, and particularly in rural America.
A central tenant of Sam Walton’s success was paying attention to potential customers and working harder than everyone else to capture their spending. This lesson is true today, and can help your community become more competitive and successful. We have produced a thought paper, Lessons from Sam Walton, Keys to Wal-Mart Stores' Success, which explores how a community can help its local businesses become more competitive and grow a more successful community through increased spending capture.

This paper also explores how by working with local retail and service businesses, you can discover growth-oriented entrepreneurs who can grow your base economy and diversify your economy over time. For more on growth-oriented entrepreneurs, we are also sharing our paper on Growth-Oriented Entrepreneurs.
Like you, I am in search of solutions. I welcome your questions, insights and even your push back. Share your thoughts with me at don@e2mail.org.

Field News
Rural Trending Up? A series of national media articles seem to show a shift in attitudes on rural communities. In the Washington Post, Americans say there’s not much appeal to big city living, so why do so many live there? In the New York Times: How Rural America Is Saving Itself and The Hard Truths of Trying to ‘Save’ the Rural Economy.

Recent Stories of Progress from the Field. First there is a story of success from our friends in rural Kansas and the community of Moundridge, Kansas. The second story comes from Southeastern Minnesota and our friends with REV at the Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation and the Bluff Country Collaborative – Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative. Last, download Social Mobility in Rural America, a report showcasing rural communities that are surmounting obstacles and helping their young people build a brighter future.

Entrepreneurial Alliance. Chris Gibbons, the founded of Economic Gardening, has launched a new initiative to create an Entrepreneurial Alliance. “We believe that entrepreneurship and innovation are the foundations of an economy that works for everyone,” says Gibbons. We agree and urge you to consider joining the movement and the Alliance by reaching out to Chris at christiangibbons47@gmail.com.

Spring training. Economic Gardening spring training/certification (class #22) will be held April 8-10 this year at the historic Boulderado Hotel in Boulder, Colorado. To register or obtain training information, contact christiangibbons47@gmail.com.
Upcoming Events
National Entrepreneurship Week
National Entrepreneurship Week is a congressionally chartered initiative founded in 2006. What does your community have planned? Visit the website for events and partners for 2019. More Info
Rural Rise Monthly WebConference
Rural Rise is committed to the rise of rural entrepreneurship. Join monthly conversations around successes and learnings from diverse communities across the country. More Info
Save the Date
Kauffman Foundation Eship Summit
May 21-23, 2019
Kansas City, Missouri
More info call (816) 932-1000
Annual Rural Rise Entrepreneurship Gathering
Sept. 16-19, 2019
Pine Bluff, Arkansas