Sunday, March 6, 2011

Business Roundtable

A few statistics from the Office of Advocacy and the SBA: In 2009 there were 27.5 million businesses in the US of which 99% were small business. The latest available Census data show that there were 6.0 million firms with employees (employer firms) in 2007 and 21.4 million without employees in 2008. A small business is defined by the number of its workers: fewer than 500. Small businesses employ an astonishing half of all US workers. In 2009, 660,900 employer firms closed, which is a turnover of about 10%.

So you can safely ignore commonly repeated statistics like "80% of all businesses fail in the first five years" for these reasons and the fact that information on small businesses without employees is especially hard to obtain because they do not need to register with entities like the Department of Labor who assess the data.

The economy is still a challenge for small businesses, however. Finding new custom and income streams has never been more difficult in an age where thousands of new graduates emerge from college prepared to provide for free the same services that you offer.

The unemployment rate is now almost 8.9%.

Therefore, if you're presently a struggling small business owner thinking of closing your business to "get a proper job", the likelihood that your new employer will fail, leaving you unemployed, is almost the same as the likelihood that your own business will fail.

So stick with it.


- Remember why you started your business in the first place and imagine you're in that same place again. What would you change? 
- Think of a person you know who has succeeded in your particular business and figure out how they got there. 
- Think of all the best parts of each year you have been in business and list them; evaluate how you can replicate all those good times in one year and make that this year.

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