insurance: are you covered written on sand.

The small business insurance crisis: why the ASBFEO says an alternative is needed!

- January 10, 2024 3 MIN READ

Many small and family businesses say their biggest and most pressing cost pressure is not wages, energy or even landlords putting up the rent; it’s insurance, writes Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Bruce Billson. Finding adequate insurance cover at commercially viable terms is fast becoming a wicked challenge that is, sadly, in too many… Read more »

bank branch close sign

Bank closures are breaking trust and leaving rural and regional business out in the cold

- December 12, 2023 3 MIN READ

When a bank leaves town, often all that’s left is a boarded-up building. But it can have a shocking effect on businesses, jobs, liveability and prosperity explains Australian Small Business and Family enterprise Ombudsman, Bruce Billson. The Australian Banking Association is updating its bank closure protocol, but I find it laughable in that it implies… Read more »

Optus outage

Reliable communication is an essential service, Optus needs to be held accountable

- November 14, 2023 2 MIN READ

Telecommunications companies talk a big game about how their services are so important for the vitality of small businesses when they’re trying to sign them up as customers, but what happens when things go wrong? Where is the accountability? asks Bruce Billson, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman. So when things go wrong, as… Read more »

business risk and reward

Risk and reward: The small business balancing act

- October 10, 2023 4 MIN READ

Small and family business owners are increasingly shouldering more risk for less reward as compounding regulations and economic challenges hit businesses and profitability, writes Bruce Billson, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman. Data recently released by my office showed that 43 per cent of small businesses didn’t make a profit in the last full… Read more »


Why loyalty now means more at work – and how to get it

- September 14, 2023 3 MIN READ

  Loyalty is the fly-under-the-radar virtue and is frequently usurped for its more glamourous comrades like generosity, fairness, or the new kid on the block – resilience. Whilst all great qualities with deserved standing, they don’t come close to the laurels of loyalty, explains employment expert Roxanne Calder. Loyalty is your best buddy from school… Read more »

sign with words Age Limit 35: ageist concept

RUOK with being ageist?

- September 14, 2023 4 MIN READ

  RUOK day in Australia falls on Thursday 14 September this year.  And so I would like to pose another question.  Are RUOK with being ageist? asks Sue Parker. It will be a hard question for many in small businesses (and the larger ones also).  And that is a good thing, as ageism impacts men… Read more »

take ownership accountability concept

4 steps to taking ownership and being more accountable

- August 30, 2023 3 MIN READ

If you want your career and business to thrive, you need to take ownership of your actions and decisions, writes Ella Zhang, author of Upgrade: How to Outperform your Default Self to Gain your Superpowers Qwnership is crucial in defining your sense of responsibility, commitment, and integrity. It shapes how you approach your work and… Read more »

word cloud focusing on procurement

Tenderless: How procurement processes are failing small business

- August 8, 2023 4 MIN READ

Procurement might not sound like the most exciting topic, but winning a government contract can be life-changing for a small business, explains Bruce Billson, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman.  As all businesses know, there is no substitute for good customers. The Australian Government has committed to being a bigger customer for small and family… Read more »

Jurassic Park still

The great AI debate: Jurassic Park lessons that may surprise you

- July 14, 2023 5 MIN READ

  There is currently a lot of hype surrounding AI. Media scaremongering and misinformation abound, often centring around dystopian futures that feature the end of humanity. In my opinion, the underlying source of all the negativity boils down to the following: fear of the unknown, writes Erin Beel, Design and Accessibility Manager, CI&T. Fear of the… Read more »