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Business Challenges in 2007

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This story appears in the January 2007 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Larry Dietrick is smiling--and why shouldn't he be? Scientel Wireless, his 22-person Lombard, Illinois, company, grew from $3.2 million in 2005 sales to $4.2 million in 2006 sales. "It's a spectacular business right now," says the 48-year-old entrepreneur, who designs and builds wireless broadband networks for cities and public agencies. "There's a lot of interest in the market."

Yet behind the president and co-founder's cheery outlook are significant concerns. A talent shortage has him doing back flips to hire qualified employees. Health-care costs keep climbing, making it more difficult for Scientel to match larger employers' compensation deals. "It's often hard for us to compete in the benefits package," Dietrick says. Even when the company does find a good hiring match, other issues can snag the deal. "We did hire one individual, [but we] had to go through a rather lengthy immigration issue."

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