From the August 1996 issue of Entrepreneur

Small business is hot! As entrepreneurs, finally, you are in great demand. Other businesses are catering to your every whim, consultants are targeting you, cities and states across the nation are throwing tax breaks and other enticements your way, both major political parties claim to have your best interests at heart, and bankers are eager to pass you their cash.

Why after years-actually, decades-of being ignored (or worse, dismissed in favor of your big-business brethren) are you, the nation's entrepreneurs, suddenly such a hot commodity? There are a number of reasons, the most obvious of which is there is a lot more of you than ever before-at last count, America's small-business owners numbered 23 million strong. And the constant tsunami of corporate layoffs ensures there will be plenty more of you in years to come.

Today almost everyone in the country has his or her own definition of what an entrepreneur is and why we should all care. I'm not going to get into that here. Suffice it to say, if you're reading this magazine, you obviously consider yourself an entrepreneur. Next month, in our September issue, senior editor Janean Chun and staff writer Cynthia Griffin examine the increasing importance of entrepreneurs and your contributions to the economic well-being of our nation and the world.

Why am I bringing this up now? Well, I have a self-serving reason. Last month, Entrepreneur's monthly circulation rose from 410,000 to 455,000-a noteworthy feat, especially considering the stagnant state of much of the magazine industry. But even more incredibly, next month our circulation will soar again, to 510,000! In magazine parlance, that means we've hit the big time. And we owe it all to you. Well, also to our circulation director, Bruce Miller, and newsstand director, Susan Rose. But mostly it's you.

So, whether you're a longtime reader, a recent convert or are perusing the magazine for the first time, we at Entrepreneur would like to thank you-and to promise you even more of what you've come to expect from us: incisive articles; practical, hands-on information; a monthly dose of motivation; updates on the latest business trends; and in-depth interviews with the nation's leading experts. In short, within our pages you'll find everything you need to help grow your business tomorrow, next year and into the next century.

I know most regular readers have come to expect some words of wisdom in this space. So here goes. Recently, I met former congressional representative Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky, a truly inspirational individual. While running for office several years ago, she advised one of her young children, "You have to be prepared to lose before you can win." Wise words. Every entrepreneur who's been on the brink should heed them.