Business and Economy &Entrepreneurs &Michigan Positive &Technology PR Insights 23 Jul 2008 03:32 pm

New outlooks on entrepreneurism in Michigan

Finding a job in Michigan may be challenging, but it’s not impossible.

Matt Roush, editor of the Great Lakes IT report and technology editor at WWJ News Radio 950, gave a presentation July 17 to Automation Alley and the Entrepreneurial Institute of Southeastern Michigan highlighting some of the positives in the Michigan economy today.

Although large companies and manufacturing industries are consistently losing jobs, small entrepreneurial companies are slowly gaining jobs. The challenge is to know how to encourage more of this kind of growth. Some of the things Michigan has going for it in this area include: engineering talent, great research universities such as the University of Michigan, Wayne State University and Michigan State University and a welcoming environment for business.

There are some steps that can be taken in order to create a healthy environment for these businesses to survive. They include: increasing entrepreneurial K-12 education, increased acceptance and understanding of the risks associated with entrepreneurial businesses and a better understanding of the role of public relations in these ventures.

Many companies in the high-tech, healthcare and problem solving industries are growing and hiring. NSF International, a public health and safety company, is one of those companies. In 2007, NSF hired 117 people in the United States. So far 68 people have been hired in 2008. The company is averaging 31 open positions per month. NSF employees also have opportunities for internal moves – 46 employees were promoted or transferred through the month of June.

High-tech players in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Linux Box and Genetics Squared have also grown and hired this year.

“It’s simply not true that tech jobs are moving to India and China,” Roush said. He went on to say this is what some high school students are hearing from their counselors, despite the inaccuracy of the statement.

The companies who are experiencing growth are often the ones who are able and willing to adapt to the changing economy.

Plexus Systems, a company that provides business software solutions, added 30 jobs in Michigan in 2007. In 2008, the company will create more than 100 more positions.

Want another example? Meditrina Pharmaceuticals Inc., Velcura Therapeutics, NanoBio Corporation and ProNAi Therapeutics have all moved some of their business to Michigan. These pharmaceutical companies have also been adding jobs.

Creativity, high-tech skills and willingness to take an entrepreneurial risk may be one path to success for Michigan.

Beth

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