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The Best Small Biz Cities for Workers

small business . / Credit: Business Owner Image via Shutterstock

The Rocky Mountain air of the Mile High City must be good for business. A new poll has named Denver the top spot for small business workers.

That ranking was based on data from CardHub, which examined several datasets, including job turnover, pay and hours worked among small business workers in the top 30 metropolitan areas in the United States. Boston and Minneapolis, Seattle and San Francisco rounded out the top five best cities after Denver.    

San Diego, Philadelphia, Sacramento, Calif., Riverside, Calif., and Detroit were on the other end of the spectrum for small business workers. The survey also found that Miami, Denver and New York have the most small businesses per capita, while Las Vegas, San Antonio and Riverside have the fewest small businesses per capita. 

[Simple Ways to Keep Your Workers Happy]

Additionally, the poll found that Los Angeles, Kansas City, Mo., and St. Louis were the cities with the most variety in industry among small businesses; Baltimore, Miami and Washington, D.C., had the least variety. Phoenix, Denver and Riverside were named the fastest- growing small business communities.

"Each major metropolitan area has its strengths and weaknesses as a destination for small business employees, and the relative attractiveness of each ultimately has a lot to do with personal preference," said Odysseas Papadimitriou, CEO of credit card comparison site CardHub. "With that being said, an applicant’s ability to be selective about where they work, what kind of job they want and how much they’ll be compensated obviously depends on the strength of their background."

Job seekers can take a number of other steps to help improve their chances of working for a small business, Papadimitriou said.  They include:

  • Tailor your search, but avoid limiting yourself —You obviously don’t want to cast too wide of a net, as that will simply increase the odds of missing a job you’d be perfect for as well as limit your ability to pay enough attention to each lead. However, it’s perhaps equally bad to put yourself in a box in terms of the types of jobs you’re willing to consider. Leave your preconceptions behind and instead focus on the jobs for which your skills are appropriate (rather than what your degree is in), no matter where they may be. 
  • Move proactively if necessary —The entrepreneurs who run successful small businesses are busy folks who garner a lot of interest from local job applicants. They tend to give these candidates more consideration, as it’s simply easier to interview them and more likely they will accept a job if offered. If you’re not finding the type of job you want where you’re currently living, you should definitely at least consider moving. 
  • Focus on the future —Job seekers have a tendency to overly emphasize immediate compensation and the sheer availability of a job. While there is obviously something to be said for being able to pay the bills in the short term, it’s also important to consider opportunities for growth within a given company, the likelihood of said company achieving long-term success, and the potential for skills development that could help you find other work in the future. 
  • Customize your approach —It’s amazing how little care most job applicants put into their search. Many simply apply en masse, thinking this will give them the greatest odds of finding a job. In truth, however, they’re severely minimizing their chances of finding the right job. It’s therefore important to not only customize your cover letter and resume for each position that you have serious interest in, but also to research each respective company.
  • Mind your online footprint: As familiar as we’ve become with the Internet and social media, people still seem to forget that online information is accessible to everyone. Before applying for any jobs, it’s a good idea to adjust your privacy settings on all social media accounts as well as have explanations ready for any publicly available information that might reflect poorly upon you.
  • Have a positive attitude: Not only is it important to stay positive in the face of rejection, but you also have to remember that employers are looking for people who fit their organizational culture and will be pleasant to work with every day.

Follow David Mielach on Twitter @D_M89 . Follow us @bndarticlesFacebook or Google+.

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