1 What more could the government be doing to help small
businesses in the recession?
The government has already put some measures in place to help small businesses,
such as the Enterprise Finance Guarantee which we called for last year. However,
it must go further. Small businesses need help with their cash flow. One way the
government could help is by making rate relief automatic for eligible businesses.
6 What’s your top piece of advice for
those who are thinking of working
Every small business needs a detailed business
plan that prepares you for the good times as well
as the bad. Without planning and research, a small
business will be in a weaker position than its rivals.
Concentrate on your unique selling points and
make sure you revise them as time goes by.
7 What is your view of the current
opportunities for SMEs to access
training for staff?
The process needs to be made simpler, and small
businesses need to be made aware of the financial
incentives available. In a recent poll, 95 per cent
of FSB members said they were unaware of the
wage contributions they were eligible for from the
government, and are burdened by the red tape that
surrounds apprenticeships and training.
8 What can small businesses do to
help build a sustainable economy?
Small businesses are the engine room of the
economy and are doing all they can to avoid making
redundancies. Introducing wage subsidies for small
businesses that need to temporarily cut back on
staff hours could save them from closing, and save
employees from losing their jobs.
10 The FSB has been campaigning
to keep trade local. Why do you
think it’s so important?
As small businesses are the lifeblood of the
economy, it is crucial that people shop in their local
firms and that local authorities use the services of
independent businesses. For every pound spent
locally, up to 75 pence finds its way back into that
economy, building it up and making it stronger.
Small businesses can help generate growth and