According to a recent Enterprise Nation poll, more than half of the UK’s small business founders are happy to ask for advice, which appears to be a sign of the maturity of the start-up sector.
This is because separate research suggests that while start-up rates are very high in the UK, with more than half a million new concerns registering with Companies House every year, more of them are failing. In fact, the number of start-ups that failed, rose to 12.2 per cent in 2017.
This, and the fact that it is easier to find advisors nowadays, means that more entrepreneurs are ready to listen to advice, but they want to do so on their terms rather than be talked at.
Research suggests that small business founders want ‘bite-sized’ advice, with the advisers polled saying they are increasingly being asked for one-off advisory sessions and even advice given over the phone or via digital conferencing links.
Today’s entrepreneurs also have varying needs, with some wanting advice on business basics and other preferring more niche information, such as how to enter specific markets, how to find the right sort of funding or how to use social media to get their message out to prospective customers.
Being able to find independent advice from experienced businesspeople is key for entrepreneurs that want their businesses to survive and they need to be open to the idea that asking for it is not a sign of weakness but a smart move.