The Daily Rundown

The Small Business Daily Rundown: Holiday Parties Back On, Small Business Optimism, Colorado SBO Finds Solution to Labor Shortage

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If you’re not sure what to wear to the company holiday party, check out our headlines today. We don’t have any fashion advice, but we do have stories about the jump in the number of office holiday parties, the roller coaster that is small business optimism, and an SBO in Colorado who found a way to deal with the labor shortage and the issue of childcare in one fell swoop … and no, we’re not talking about child labor!

Holiday festivities grow as number of parties grows after 3-year decline

After a 3-year decline, the number of companies throwing a holiday party this year jumped by 10%. Despite concerns about the state of the economy and the continued risk posed by mixing work and alcohol in the era of #MeToo, three-quarters of businesses are decking the halls in some way this year.

The Number: 47%. Ebenezer Scrooge says “Bah Humbug” to the 47% of companies extending holiday party invitations to family members and spouses, up from 30% in 2018. 

The Quote: “Companies are ready to celebrate this year after a low-key 2018. It doesn’t appear that companies are holding the lavish parties of the 1980s and 1990s, and post-Great Recession, and even post-#MeToo, those days may be long gone.” 

A visual representation of small business optimism over the past 24 months

Earlier this week we looked at the NFIB report indicating the small business optimism posted its largest gain since 2018. If you feel like you’re on a rollercoaster when it comes to your business, a quick look at this graph from Axios will help explain why.

The Number: 4. Despite the optimism, sales expectations fell by 4 points, hitting the lowest level in 3 years. 

The Quote: “The headline index remains below its cycle peak, 108.8 in August last year, but that was supported by tax cuts and was not sustainable.”

Colorado SBO hires other stay-at-home moms

It takes one to know one, they say. And business-owner Rachel Stone knows all about the importance of bringing in income while staying home with the kids. Stone started an online clothing shop as a way to earn extra money for her family. When it came time to expand, she decided to recruit from a very specific talent pool: stay-at-home moms. Today, her company fills orders for roughly 4,000 items. Nice job, Mama!

The Number: 28. In just 2 years, Stone has grown her business to 28 employees, all of them stay-at-home moms.

The Quote: “I wanted to hire people who were in the same position I was in,” she said. “Daycare is too expensive for a lot of people. I wanted to offer something to a mom who has to stay home.”


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