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The value of taking some time out from your business

According to the latest MYOB Business Monitor survey, 30 percent of business owners haven’t holidayed since starting their business. Sound familiar? Think about the effect this has on you physically and mentally, plus the effect it has on your family and friend networks.

Our latest MYOB Business Monitor survey of 1,000+ Australian small to medium enterprises (a study that’s run since 2004) discovered economic confidence amongst business owners and operators has hit an almost-three year low. Ouch.

We found less than one fifth (19 percent) of respondents expected Australia’s economy to improve within one year. It was the lowest percentage recorded since the 16 percent found in our March 2009 report, was only a little over half the 35 percent uncovered in March 2011 and was almost one third of the 54 percent found in March 2010.

Twenty percent said their revenue increased in the year prior and around twice that – 40 percent – said it had fallen.

Revenue expectations for the next year were a little rosier. Some 30 percent think theirs will increase over the next year and 39 percent saw it remaining steady. 24 percent expected it to fall, which when compared to the above past-year result is an improvement.

Let’s hope a cash rate drop on 1 May – come on, RBA, it’s time! – improves these figures further. Goodness knows SMEs across many industries are calling out for some much-needed assistance from the powers that be to make their life a little easier. Speaking of which…

What surprised and saddened me most was that nearly one third of our respondents (29 percent) had not holidayed since they started their business. Not one holiday. For many, this has been the case for over 10 years.

Sound familiar? Think about the effect this has on you physically and mentally, plus the effect it has on your family and friend networks. Of course, it’s way easier said than done to take that much-desired time out from work to rejuvenate the mind and soul, and please your loved ones, but the long-term health benefits will surely outweigh the investment in the long run.

This eMedExpert article offers some great proof points around how to boost your brain power – physical exercise, learning something new, social interaction, sleep, stress management etc.

If you read while keeping a holiday in mind it becomes obvious what benefit taking a little break will make. You could justify it as time spent on better preparing your brain for making sound decisions about the business, keeping it as active as possible to beat the economic blues and optimise your success.

Now, how do we go about passing legislation that makes holidaying a tax deductible exercise for SME operators. Let the lobbying begin!

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Kristy Sheppard

Kristy Sheppard

Kristy Sheppard is MYOB's manager for public relations. She has more than a decade of experience in the public relations space, spanning B2C and B2B corporate and consulting roles within the technology, financial services, franchising and FMCG industries. At MYOB she delivers programs communicating its vision, business advocacy stance and milestones as it advances products towards and within the online landscape.

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