Increased financial pressures and economic uncertainty can cause serious concerns for SME owners and decision makers. While growth is expected to pick up in the coming months, inflation concerns remain. It’s likely that many will feel the impact of those challenges on their mental wellbeing as they deal with these business risks.
With the UK expected to have one of the highest inflation rates in the G20 this year, It is therefore not surprising that SME business owners and decision makers are feeling the effects of this. On top of financial difficulties, operating a small business during turbulent economic times can feel particularly isolating and stressful. In fact, the latest findings from Sky Business’ research show that stress affects more than half (53%) of SME business owners and decision makers.
While the era of hybrid working has benefits for many, the research shows it can be hard for these professionals to strike the right work/life balance, given the often isolated nature of their jobs. Over half (59%) admit that due to the nature of their role, they can never fully switch off, even ‘after hours’.
The issue is further exacerbated by long working days. The research found nearly half (45%) spend more than two hours per day in meetings, whilst more than a third (39%) are currently working 9-12 hours per day. With 58% of those surveyed saying their spouse has had to help them with the work they bring home, it’s no surprise that this is having a knock-on effect outside ‘the office’ – over two-thirds of SME business owners and decision makers say they have lost sleep due to work stress.
Time is clearly an incredibly valuable asset for these professionals, which means every detail of their operations counts – including having quick and reliable WiFi that will support business continuity. Time-poor and overburdened business leaders have no spare time to worry about the performance of their broadband services, however 35% of SME owners surveyed agree slow broadband is currently their biggest broadband challenge. When asked what would ensure the smooth operation of their business in the coming year, a reliable internet connection was ultimately cited by 59%. It is therefore essential that suppliers recognise the specific needs of these professionals and provide a reliable service to suit.
Fast internet working smoothly in the background is ultimately essential for enabling SME business owners and decision makers to concentrate on what really matters: running a great business. While nobody can prepare entrepreneurs for the difficulties of running a business against the backdrop of a challenging economic landscape, suppliers can support in weathering them. Having a quick, reliable and secure internet connection means one less worry for businesses.