Small businesses are the heart and soul of our world entrepreneurial economy. They create, inspire, and fundamentally change people's lives.

In the United States, we keep nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit—a force that built America—and people from all over the world, rather than offering criticism, are engaging in the highest form of flattery: imitation.

We must be doing something right!

Let's take a look at 12 global small business trends to watch in 2008—trends that can be embraced by any culture and will add value to any nation.

1. Embrace the world

Small businesses will embrace the world and make globalization come true. When there is nowhere to grow, branching out globally offers a wealth of opportunity, including rapid expansion.

2. Export like mad

Small businesses will discover that a weak US dollar offers an exciting, challenging, and fantastic chance to export. It makes all American goods a flashing blue light special. As a result, small businesses will start to export like mad. Their mandate in 2008 will become "Go forth and export!"

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Laurel Delaney (LaurelDelaney.com) is the founder of GlobeTrade.com and the creator of "Borderbuster," an e-newsletter, and The Global Small Business Blog. She can be reached at ldelaney@globetrade.com.