How will you support business owners on World Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Day?

- June 27, 2022 2 MIN READ

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Bruce Billson,  is calling for the community to join him in supporting the nation’s small business entrepreneurs on World Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Day.

Celebrating small business

Billson said World Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Day (June 27) provides the perfect opportunity to show some love to the nation’s small business owners.

“These are great people in plain sight, and we see them everywhere, every day,” he said.

“When you stop and think about it, we depend so heavily on the small and family-run businesses in our lives – whether it is the local café, pharmacy, accountant, builder, mechanic or grocer who are conveniently there when you need them.

“The best way to support small businesses is to be a kindly customer – patient and understanding, with good and generous intent. Small businesses are run by real people who deserve our respect and empathy every day,” Billson said.

Globally, the United Nations has marked June 27 as MSME Day to raise awareness of the contribution of small businesses to sustainable development and the global economy.

Small businesses provide employment for more than five million Australians – two out of every five people with a private sector job work in a small business.

Small business contributes $483 billion to the national economy each year.

About 38 per cent of small businesses are owned by women and in recent years two-thirds of all new businesses have been led by women who are finding solutions to everyday problems, sharing their ideas and building a business from their ingenuity.

The spirit of entrepreneurship

The Ombudsman described small business as a dynamic and fast-growing sector that allows people with an entrepreneurial spirit to pursue their dreams.

“We should do more to celebrate the vital and deeply personal commitment made by more than 2.3 million small and family businesses to our community.

Small business people take on a big and often stressful responsibility. It is not just an enterprise, but their life – often their home and mortgage, family and identity are all tied together.”

COVID impacts are still being felt by small business

Billson said the past two years had been particularly hard for small businesses who faced not just shutdowns from the COVID-19 pandemic, but a series of rolling disasters such as devastating bushfires, ongoing drought conditions and record-breaking flooding in various parts of the country.

“Now small businesses have to navigate crushing supply chain disruptions and leaping input costs, soaring energy bills, higher wage costs and a chronic labour shortage just to keep their doors open and serve their communities,” he said.

Billson also urged small business owners and leaders to not overlook their own mental health during such difficult times.

“This can feel unrelenting and it is vitally important those running a small business look after their emotional wellbeing and mental health,” he said.

“Sometimes it can be as simple as making time to pause, reflect and reconnect. Talking to trusted advisers and networks is a great way to find solutions. Our website and the My Business Health portal have useful tools and resources.”

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