Business leaders re-evaluated their company's missions. It wasn't just words now. Employees reconsidered their companies, and what was really important about their jobs. Profits, growth and market share suddenly seemed trivial. Family, friends and people were the top priority.
But the strength of this country is that its businesses, and the people who run them, will always move forward. To progress. To innovate. That spirit has built the United States into the most economically robust country in the world. It is the entrepreneurial spirit.
It is that spirit that Ernst & Young honors with its Entrepreneur Of The Year Award. Quite possibly, this year the award means more than ever.
"What always seems to amaze us every year is you always wonder, 'Where will the new entrepreneurs come from?'" says C. Lee Thomas, partner-in-charge of entrepreneurial services for Northeast Ohio for Ernst & Young LLP. "Particularly with the economy this year and with 9-11 all factored in, we continue to see some strong entrepreneurs and some great winners."
Even with the subsequent recession, Northeast Ohio showed its resilience. About 70 companies were nominated for this year's award, almost identical to the region's number last year.
"Nationally, our nominations have been down," Thomas says. "But in Northeast Ohio, we've held up well with a consistent amount of nominations. That's a real positive trend here."
It would be impossible to honor these entrepreneurs and their achievements while ignoring the events of this past year. Everything has changed.
Instead, let us honor these entrepreneurs, not only for their business skills but for their pursuit of the dream that is the bedrock of the United States of America. How to reach: Ernst & Young, (216) 861-5000