Welcome to the Small Business Run Down. Each day we bring you stories and trends that impact small business owners and their workforce.
On today’s agenda: SCORE’s small business retirement infographic and new legislation aimed at helping SBOs provide retirement plans for employees. Plus, a study on how coworking spaces impact employees’ professional identities.
A new infographic released by SCORE highlights the retirement savings crisis faced by many American small businesses. Over one-third of small SBOs report that they don’t make enough to even save for retirement, while only 28% of businesses with less than ten employees offer retirement savings plans.
Congress passed legislation earlier this month, however, that makes it easier for small businesses to join together to negotiate better rates and retirement plans for their employees.
The Number: 28%. One in five working Americans is not saving anything for retirement, while only 28% of those who do save are putting away between 6% and 10% of their income, as recommended by experts.
The Quote: “I purchased this business eight years ago. And any profits above salaries went to paying off the bank loan that I had taken out to purchase the business. I would definitely consider a 401(K) plan in the future…as long as the funds are available.”
The Department of Labor has released a Mental Health Toolkit to help employers better understand mental health issues, assist struggling employees, and cultivate a supportive work environment. Among other things, the online resource provides employers with readily available examples of mental health programs that companies can then use to create their own. Mental health issues are on the rise and only 16% of HR workers believe they are qualified to spot and handle employee concerns.
The Number: 52%. A 2018 survey found that 52% of workers believe their mental health issues interfere with their work.
The Quote: “Employers that understand the importance of providing a supportive environment that empowers these employees are doing what’s right for their employees and for their businesses.”
A recent study published in The Harvard Business Review examined the impact that coworking spaces have on employees’ professional identities. As flexible work arrangements gain traction, a growing number of workers are turning to coworking spaces instead of working from home or coffee shops. The study found that coworking spaces have a positive impact on workers’ professional identities and can help startup companies make a good impression on potential clientele.
The Number: 14,000. The first coworking space opened in 2005 and over 14,000 coworking spaces have opened worldwide since then.
The Quote: “After all, organizations invest valuable resources nurturing connectivity among employees and developing work cultures. But, in a coworking space that houses multiple organizations, there are several messages, norms, and values, competing for members’ attention.”
If you’ve read enough doom and gloom stories in the news lately, take the time to read about how the Neenan Company of Colorado decided to face a crisis with “integrity intact, profits in peril” and ended up saving their firm $165 million and repairing their reputation.