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Good morning, Paul!
We all know well the story about just how hard the pandemic hit businesses of all sizes. Many didn’t make it, others are struggling to rebound. There is one statistic that stands out, and that is that the smallest of small businesses, those sole proprietorships, freelancers, and businesses with very few or even no employees, got hit the hardest by the pandemic, according to a recently released survey conducted by the Federal Reserve bank.
In fact, the report cites that as many as 76% of these smallest of small businesses suffered a decline in revenue over the past 12 months, according to the survey, and 32% of these smallest businesses characterize their financial condition as currently being qualified as poor.
Now, while this report is troubling, certainly, it does make clear that sole proprietor businesses are simply more fragile with fewer options, with less margin for error. And in most cases, they don’t have a safety net to keep them from struggling or even failing altogether when the going gets really tough.
And so while the pandemic highlighted just how resilient entrepreneurs and small businesses are in general, whether their survival was achieved by pivoting, or by relying on government aid, or scaling back costs to make it through the storm, it also highlighted how the smallest businesses suffered the most during the pandemic.
Just another reminder, Paul, just how important it is for us all to focus on shopping with small businesses, shopping with our main street merchants, going to local dining that aren’t chains, those that are independently owned. It’s incumbent upon us to help our small businesses and restaurants make it through this really tough period of time. And your support means everything to them right now.
I’m Jeff Sloan, founder and CEO of StartupNation.com, and that’s today’s Business Beat on the Great Voice of the Great Lakes, WJR.