We are delighted to announce the launch of our Small Business – BIG Change campaign
Small business in this context means businesses that have up to 49 employees, with a very specific focus on micro-businesses that have 0-9 employees.
The illustration below shows that, according to government figures, small businesses account for 99.26% of private sector businesses in the UK, accounting for 48% of employment and 36% of private sector turnover.
These businesses may be small individually, but collectively they clearly have a BIG impact.
Breaking these figures down even further to show the importance of micro businesses:
Micro businesses with no employees account for 76% of private businesses
Micro businesses with 1-9 employees account for 19% of private businesses
It is abundantly clear that #MicroBizMatters, and yet small businesses are continually treated as inferior to larger organisations.
That must change!
So, let’s look at some the BIG CHANGES we are campaigning for…
1. There needs to be a BIG CHANGE in central and local governments approach to small businesses. They need to acknowledge the importance of micro and small businesses and provide more support, which includes ensuring procurement departments work towards making tender processes easier for small businesses to access.
Hull City Council is the exception to the rule and has recently launched A Micro Business Strategy and Charter.
We need more authorities to follow this wonderful example.
2. There needs to be a BIG CHANGE in the public’s approach to micro and small businesses. While the Small Business Saturday campaign is to be welcomed and supported, it is not enough. Consumers should be encouraged to purchase from small local businesses as much as possible, not just retail businesses on occasional Saturdays throughout the year!
3. There needs to be a BIG CHANGE in awareness of the potential for micro and small businesses to make a positive impact on society. For too long, these conversations have focussed on big corporates and/or social enterprises. But it is micro and small businesses that are the engine room of the British economy, and it is those micro and small businesses that can cumulatively be a phenomenal power for good.
Many micro and small businesses need to make BIG CHANGES, too.
4. To achieve the recognition they deserve, small businesses need to be operating efficiently and ethically, meeting and exceeding legislation, and always considering the impact they have on people and the environment. In other words, they need to be operating responsibly.
Most small businesses already operate this way, but some need to make BIG CHANGES. Always remembering, of course, that Doing Good is Good for Business.
5. Micro and small businesses need to be talking about the good things they are doing – authentically, of course.
How do customers and potential customers know how wonderful small businesses are if they do not tell them? This is a BIG CHANGE for many small businesses. Even many businesses that really do set a shining example in the way they operate and support their local community do little to communicate the positive impact they have on society.
6. There needs to be a BIG CHANGE in the number of micro and small businesses that aspire to attaining robust certification that testifies to what excellent companies they are. The benefits of certification are immense and if small businesses do not step up to the challenge, larger businesses will take all the limelight.
How do WE help ensure these BIG CHANGES materialise?
The Organisation for Responsible Businesses is the ONLY organisation to launch responsible business certification designed specifically for small businesses. (This type of certification is also known as CSR certification or social value certification, with organisations such as B-Corp and CSR-A being amongst the most well-known)
ORB launched the Responsible Business Standard as an onsite auditable certification, validated by Anglia Ruskin University, in 2011.
We have made a BIG CHANGE this year by moving the certification to an online platform featuring a course with certification options, thereby making it far more accessible and affordable for micro and small businesses.
Click the Responsible Business Standard logo image below to find out more.
ORB launched with a mission to change the world, one small business at a time.
We now invite small businesses to step up to the challenge and not only BE THE CHANGE THEY WANT TO SEE IN THIS WORLD, but also evidence that they are part of a BIG CHANGE to a better way of doing business.
Part of a BIG CHANGE that takes the reputation of micro and small businesses up to a level where everybody recognises their worth.
Part of a BIG CHANGE that is good for business, and good for society, too.