Oklahoma, the Land of Entrepreneurial Success
There was a time in Oklahoma’s history when we lost our best and brightest to other states, but that is no longer the case. So, what is it about Oklahoma that has entrepreneurs enjoying such fantastic growth? The reason is simple: the best cities for entrepreneurs are not based solely on population, instead, a proper calculation of several factors can help you decide where the best place to start a business is.
The numbers don’t lie.
When it comes to being an entrepreneur, ratings and rankings are important, if for no other reason than they help shape how we view ourselves. Thus, it’s important to consider how Oklahoma compares to other states in entrepreneurial success. Did you know that Oklahoma was ranked #5 for Best States to Start a Business by WalletHub? Wallethub also declared Oklahoma City as the #1 in Best Large Cities to start a business. Wallethub compared all 50 states in terms of business environment, access to resources and business cost. With-in these categories Wallethub calculated measures such as states with the fastest growing firms, 5-year business survival rates, access to talent, capital and taxes, cost of living and sources of financing and capital. This recognition is huge as it works to account for the state’s investment in its innovation economy, and no one can deny Oklahoma’s progress in this.
The people have heart
John Holmes said, “There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.” Not only do the people of Oklahoma boast having heart and compassion for those they encounter, they also have a passion for supporting local businesses. Small business owners count on those around them to stay afloat; making every transaction a precious gift. The Oklahoma communities understand this fact and often seek to do business with locally owned and operated businesses.
Access to labor
Not having the right team is one of the major reasons’ startups fail. That’s why Oklahoma is an incredible choice when it comes to entrepreneurs because our state has access to quality labor. Oklahoma boasts a low unemployment rate of 3.2%, and a favorable-educated workforce, given the 48 colleges and universities in the Oklahoma vicinity. What these numbers mean to you as an entrepreneur is that no matter the type of labor you are seeking, Oklahoma has you covered.
Access to capital
Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy and having access to capital is extremely critical for their success. Oklahoma understands that the partnership among businesses, government and civic leaders is important for our state and community’s survival. In turn, the resources for capital are available and Oklahoma is confident your business will add value, stability and profitability to our economy.
Low cost of living
The more money you must spend on housing, food, and transportation, the less money you have to invest in a successful startup. USA Today ranked Oklahoma as the fourth most affordable state in the US to live in. This ranking helps to explain why entrepreneurs undoubtably agree that one of the largest benefits to doing business in Oklahoma is the low cost of living. Currently, Oklahoma’s average home price is $125,400. Low cost of living leads to a reduction in overhead expenses, more affordable employee compensation, and low housing costs. When cost of living is lower, owners have more money readily available to spend on their business.
Quality of life
It’s incredibly easy to get burned out when you aren’t happy in your environment, and burnout is a common cause of start-up failure. Oklahoma offers a high quality of life and is considered to have the best places to live, work and play. Rather you are single and looking for a night life scene, or wanting to move your family to Oklahoma as you embark on your new career, Oklahoma has you covered as there are so many things to do. Quality of life contributes to an entrepreneur’s overall well-being and motivation, and the sooner state is ready to help.
Access to Support
You didn’t think that we could go through this entire article and not mention one thing about our industry, did you? Oklahoma is the perfect place for start-ups because you have access to support as you embark on this journey. Support may come from local chamber organizations, local Entrepreneurial Summits, and even local Business Accelerators such as iStart. Our robust business accelerator program focuses on rapid business acceleration by offering core curriculum, workshops, fundraising opportunities, and personalized mentorships with leaders who have grown companies to the Inc. 500 lists. Do you want to know the best part? We are currently accepting applications and would love to help you as you embark on this wonderful journey.
Economic Growth Rate
Oklahoma boasts a current economic growth rate of 3.4% for the second quarter of 2019, Compared to the current national average of 1.9%. This illustrates our states flourishing business climate. Economic growth rate is extremely important for entrepreneurs as it helps you to understand what drives the economy, and a high economic growth rate like we have in Oklahoma symbolizes reduced unemployment and higher product demand.
Combined, these factors equal a high rate of startup success in small and large cities across the United States. More and more talented Oklahomans are seeking entrepreneurship as a career and based on the infrastructure and buzz Oklahoma has created regarding entrepreneurship, we can’t blame them! Oklahoma is a smaller, business-friendly pond with extremely competitive cost of living and is chalked full of communities and organizations that want to help entrepreneurs succeed. Oklahoma is a great place to start, scale and grow a new company. Because of this iStart is eager to welcome startup founders into our business accelerator program to quickly scale the success of new businesses. We also strive to embed our accelerator program into Fortune 1000 companies across Oklahoma to provide more resources for startups and continue to drive economic development within our community.