Tiny houses have popped up everywhere, from HGTV’s Tiny House Hunters to the trendiest Airbnb destinations. While these compact and cozy living spaces are all the rage, the impact they’re having on the business world is anything but small.
While stopping by a colleague’s office the other day, I noticed a tiny-house-turned-coffee-truck parked on the curb: The Koine House, a local haunt whose mission is to bring people together through coffee and conversation. Believe it or not, this is not the first run-in I’ve had with a teeny coffee shop at the workplace. In a previous role, a highly renovated truck would visit weekly to bring the gift of fresh-brewed coffee to our office. But tiny businesses are more than just carefully crafted espresso drinks; they’re everything from local entrepreneurs to socially-aware enterprises.
The true charm of the tiny business is that it gives the business owner much more control around their personal and social impact. For most tiny business owners, personal preferences and opinions about how to run their business and have the lowest environmental impact have found them looking smaller.
Our own community is home to a tiny business community called The Churchill, a 9,000-square-foot courtyard surrounded by 10 small businesses – all run out of repurposed shipping containers. Their community is built (literally and figuratively) around finding ways to benefit the environment and local community. Tenants are even asked to complete community service every month as a way of giving back.
Tiny businesses are taking the world by storm and reminding us that you don’t have to be big to make a big impact.