A new report from Aviva suggests enthusiasm among UK entrepreneurs is drying up. Image courtesy of: sxc.hu
Difficult trading conditions are leading Britain’s small business owners to consider moving back to being an employee, according to a new survey.
bi-annual SME Pulse
research found that 32 percent of the 500 SME owners surveyed reporting losing the enthusiasm they had when first starting out.
A further quarter is considering returning to the workforce, while half said owning a company was too difficult in the current economic climate. Just over a quarter (26 percent) said they no longer enjoyed running a business.
One of the biggest drivers for this shift in attitudes seems to be a reduction in the personal returns owners are seeing from their business, with half of those surveyed having reduced the amount taken out the company for personal use.
This was felt most acutely in the catering sector, where almost three-quarters (73 percent) of respondents said there was a marked decline in the amount they have been withdrawing from the firm. One in 10 said they now withdrew half the money they did two years ago.
The lack of available credit was also identified as a driver of waning enthusiasm; half of respondents said they had not requested funds from their bank, which may suggest they are seeking alternative means of financing or indeed self-funding.
According to David Bruce, commercial product manager at Aviva, this may be shifting their focus from long-term stability and growth to day-to-day operations.
“The mood continues to be downbeat about the economy as 2012 begins,” he said.
“Businesses are struggling against a backdrop of consumers spending cuts and many don’t envisage an improvement to the situation in the next six months.”