Small business by the numbers – how do you measure up?

by on July 21, 2014

I kind of love statistics. I’m a bit of a nerd that way. But I haven’t done too much stats stuff here on the blog. So when I was invited to publish this infographic by Dealstruck, I thought “sure, why not, let’s do something a little different here.”

In looking over the numbers, I decided it would be kind of fun to compare myself to these stats and take a bit of time to reflect on my entrepreneurial journey… so have a gander at the graphic and then check out my personal reflections below. Then feel free to share your own!


Pros and Cons of Being a Small Business Owner


  • 7 out of 10 small businesses last at least two years and about 50% survive 5 years. Well, I’ve definitely made it past average survival rates. If you have too, woo hoo! And if you’re not quite there yet, you can do it! You’re doing an awesome job. (Side note: this is the only statistic on the infographic that made me a bit sad. As a small biz cheerleader, I would love to see this as 100% surviving. BUT the business world is changing to include larger numbers of small businesses and these statistics are continually improving. So, to look on the bright side, small biz is moving on up! And by supporting a small biz whenever you possibly can, you’re playing a very important role in boosting entrepreneurship).
  • 70% of small businesses are owned and operated by a single person. I’m a solopreneur, so I fit into the mold there. I’m thrilled to have my beloved sister working with me as my virtual assistant from Dubai.
  • 60% of business owners spend at least 6 months developing their new business ideas before they actually come into fruition. 6 months developing biz ideas? Ooh, I wish I could say that! I have so many ideas that have been ruminating for years, I just never seem to have the time to execute them. Anyone with me? Any advice to get me going faster?
  • 72% of small business owners work more than 40 hours a week. Working more than 40 hours per week? Most definitely sometimes, yet there is something completely different about overtime as a small business owner. It’s not grumbling behind your boss’ back for forcing you to stay in that cubicle until 7pm, but rather a motivation to succeed that keep a small biz owner working extra hours. YOU benefit directly from the extra work put in. And let’s not forget that I also get to take way more vacay than I ever would be granted at a desk job. And I certainly take advantage when I can.
  • 54% of small business owners went to work while sick. Yes, unfortunately, sometimes you gotta do that. When you’re running the show, and deadlines are looming, you have to step up. But more as the rule than the exception, I do take the time I need to get well. Interestingly, I found a Staples survey stating that 90% of office workers go to work sick. So maybe one could draw that small business owners have more freedom when it comes to taking care of their own health? Which leads into the next stat of…
  • 53% of small business owners believe their personal health is better as a result of running their small business. Totally agree on the personal health point. Working from home has completely changed my lifestyle. My breaks now involve meditating in the garden, taking walks in the forest and making delicious healthy meals for myself. I also was surprised at how much my mental and emotional health has been bolstered by being a small business owner. Being an entrepreneur has really helped to shine the light of awareness on my unhealthy patterns and negative tendencies. No more hiding, pointing fingers and otherwise trying to deflect blame! I used to blame my job for a lot of stuff. I’ve come to realize it’s been me all along and that is a very liberating thing (even though the responsibility of this realization is immense).
  • 80% of successful small businesses borrow money. I was lucky enough to not need to get any funding for my biz, thanks to a super simple business model and a wondrous, supportive family. But I think it’s really inspiring how there are so many avenues now for getting the capital you need, whether it’s from grants or the crowd sourced funding model or other alternatives.

Now I’d love to hear from you! Which of these stats applies to you? Which don’t? Let us know in the comments…

Not sure what to blog about next? Why not do what I’ve done, reflect on how you measure up to these stats and embed the infographic in your site: check out Dealstruck’s post here. And be sure to leave a link to your post in the comments below.

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