The devastating toll of the pandemic is all too clear on our families, our cities, our nation. But we are now beginning to see an underappreciated side of the pandemic: a coast-to-coast surge in American ingenuity, drive and determination.
Even as the pandemic damaged or even destroyed many businesses, it also provided new opportunities and fostered creativity in unexpected ways. For some, it meant a recalibration of life priorities. For others, it provided the gift of time and attention to start something new or follow through on long-deferred dreams. More new businesses were created in 2020 than any other year on record, and 2021 wasn’t far behind. The one-year survival rate of those new companies topped 80% in 2021 for the first time since 1999, according to the Kauffman Indicators of Entrepreneurship.