From December 1st Government is cancelling the Business Support Service (with the exception of projects already in the system) This could be a risky strategy when you consider the following;
- SMEs account for at least 99% of the businesses in every main industry sector.
- There were a record 5.4 million private sector businesses at the start of 2015.
- Total employment in SMEs was 15.6 million; 60% of all private sector employment in the UK.
- The combined annual turnover of SMEs was £1.8 trillion, 47% of all private sector turnover in the UK.
*Information source http://www.fsb.org.uk/media-centre/small-business-statistics
When I ask new clients why they decided to start their business they say;
- They loved the idea of creating their vision not following others
- The thought of independence excited them
- They truly believed the journey would be fun
- They believed a better work/life balance was around the corner
- They were done with annoying boss’s!
Then I ask, so, here we are several years later how do you feel now? They say;
- Stressed because I am having to do everything
- Frustrated because no one other than me seems to know what to do
- Unsure about whether I am going in the right direction
- Alone because no one else seems to care
There are so many studies which show that SME’s need and benefit enormously from outside support ,so I for one am disappointed that Government has cancelled The Business Growth Service.
I have no doubt that the FSB statistics are correct and would be worried about cutting support to an industry which equates to 99% of businesses in the UK.
SME’s are not only important in their own right, they also provide vital support to almost all large organisations. The knock on effect may not be seen right away but it will be there.
Not all external Business Coaches were part of the business support scheme but anything that weakens the sector is unwelcome.
Government would be wise to hedge their bet, that cancelling SME support will have no effect, by making SME’s aware of the benefits of external support and promoting its use, even if they (Government) are not prepared to fund it.
What do you think?