Small and medium-sized firms in Yorkshire and Humber have entered 2014 with more optimism and enthusiasm and predicting strong growth.
Research by Aviva, the UK’s largest insurer, found 56 per cent of the region’s SMEs expect strong growth in the first half of 2014, compared with 22 per cent for the same period in 2012.
The insurer’s bi-annual SME Pulse survey found significant signs of an improvement in the enjoyment SME owners gained from running their business.
Around a third previously said they had lost the initial enthusiasm they had for running a business, but that has now more than halved to one in seven. Meanwhile, just one in 25 say they would consider becoming someone else’s employee again.
Meanwhile, more than a third of SME owners in Yorkshire and Humberside feel they have good work-life balance, twice as many as believe that running their business has a negative impact on their relationships with family and friends.
Robert Ledger, head of small business at Aviva, says: “The increased optimism we are seeing is great news for the economy”.
“This supports PwC reports that the UK will remain the fastest-growing major European economy in 2014.
“It is also a promising indicator of a return to business confidence to have so many businesses say they still really enjoy what they do.
“Qualities like passion and commitment to run their own business, especially when trading is tough, really shows the strength that SMEs have, and need, to survive.”