Despite an improving economy, small businesses continue to face challenges every day. Whether it's challenges retaining talent or not being sure how tax reform will affect business costs, small business owners are running their businesses day to day and trying to figure out what’s the outlook over the next 6 to 12 months. There are real challenges that are facing our country. These challenges clearly impact our daily life as business owners. They impact us by forcing us to ask ourselves questions like, “Do we hire?” and “Do we continue to invest the type of dollars that we have been into our marketing budgets?”

Reality and history dictate that small businesses and entrepreneurs are the ones that will lead our nation out of recession. According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses employ over half of all private-sector employees. With that statistic in mind we must urge the government to invest in the small businesses and entrepreneurs who put their money and their lives on the line with their businesses. These businesses are the heartbeat of this nation; Main Street will be the one to lead this nation’s economic recovery.

The president, Congress and our leaders in the federal government need to develop a plan on how they can assist small businesses and entrepreneurs in this economy. Small-business owners and entrepreneurs know that when a problem exists, the only real solution is to roll up your sleeves and solve the problem yourself. This is precisely what is occurring all around the country; small-business owners and entrepreneurs are running for public office and taking the bull by the horns by making changes and important decisions as members of Congress.

Small business owners always look at their costs and the bottom line and this is where taxes come to play. With the many unknowns still surrounding existing tax reform, small business owners are challenged to decide how to respond to rising costs: hire and better train more talent to increase sales and off-set the rise in taxes versus reducing staff and becoming more efficient. These are difficult questions to answer with no easy choices and decisions that will affect lives.

Small businesses can’t grow without access to working capital. For entrepreneurs and small businesses to grow, lines of credit, loans and other debt financing need to reopen for our nation’s small-business owners. Access to credit is the lifeline necessary for our economy to turn the tide.

With the state of America’s economy and the role small businesses play as the economic engine that runs our country, it is small-business owners and entrepreneurs who are leading our nation and Main Street in job creation and improving our local and national economies. In the end, small business is the engine that will lead us to economic revitalization and growth. Only when Main Street is back on track will our economy follow suit.

Hollis is CEO/president of Trinity Protection Services.