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Small Business Digest


Small-Business Owners Call Self-Reliance Key to Survival

Despite a recession that some predicted would last two more years, small-business owners were more confident than ever that their ventures would succeed, a recent survey showed.

Because of the unstable economy, owners said they were relying more on themselves and less on government handouts to get them through this tough time.

Ninety-four percent of respondents to the recent Intuit Payroll customer survey said their businesses’ viability relied solely on what they could do to help their ventures flourish. Of the roughly 1,000 customers who participated in the poll, 86% said they didn't believe the federal economic-stimulus plan would directly benefit their business.

To retain their employees and keep their businesses afloat, nearly half of the entrepreneurs—47%—had either reduced or suspended their own pay, according to the survey. Only 22% said they had laid off employees.

While three-quarters of the owners said the government had offered them little support, almost 85% acknowledgedconcern about complying with local, state and federal payroll regulations.

Officials at Intuit, a business and financial management-solutions provider, say the concern is legitimate.

“With more than one million payroll customers preparing $251 billion in paychecks annually, we…understand their concerns and support them in solving problems such as being compliant or managing costs,” says Cameron Schmidt, director of marketing for Intuit Employee Management Solutions.

Although the economy is struggling, small-business owners were still holding onto their optimism. In the next year, 61% said they expected that their companies would grow, and to make that happen, the entrepreneurs said they planned to use such tools as advertising and marketing, employee training and development, and purchase of new equipment.

That kind of planning is what may help them prosper, Schmidt said, because small businesses succeed or fail based on their ability to understand, and respond to, economic changes.

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