The San Francisco Chronicle today has an interesting story that essentially translates into this: healthy people = healthier economy.
Global microfinance leaders touched on something very basic. A person who is healthy can repay their loans and can’t grow the economy in other ways. Duh. But not so Duh.
It sounds like a simple enough concept, but economic sectors don’t often collide. A banker just wants to make sure that their money is repaid. But, as these leaders pointed out, a person has to worry about paying their child’s hospital bill — they’re not going to invest in their business, which won’t grow, which will make it harder to pay back the loan. This microfinance group mainly focuses on loans in poor countries. But the idea can obviously be applied here — in the US.
A healthy child can pay attention in school, do well, go to college, graduate, get a job or open a business, earn money and spend money.
A healthy business owner, likewise, can grow a business — or simply stay in business — support some employees, earn money and spend money.
A chronically ill business owner could get sicker, dip into his business coffers to pay for medical care, and in turn decide to operate his/her business on a shoestring — which means no employees.
The saddest case –and what happens too often, as in the case of my father’s independent bookstore friend, a business owner could die. Then there would be no business, no employees, and no life.