By now, we all know that our economy is a house of cards. And that house keeps finding new and creative ways of crumbling. A recent study found more than one-third of all California small business owners took out risky mortgages to get cash for business expenses from 2004 to 2007. Now that these mortgages are about to reset, the higher payments will threaten more than 2.1 million small business jobs over the next three to four years. The survey determined that a significant number of California small business owners are at risk of losing their homes, and ultimately their businesses, to foreclosure. “The resulting job loss will contribute to California’s spiking unemployment and cause further financial distress to California’s economy,” says study author Samuel D. Bornstein. Welcome to the new economy.
By choice or by force? USA Today reports on a new study by CareerBuilder.com that says one in four workers who haven’t found jobs are considering launching their own business. Which makes us wonder: are these people really the best candidates for business ownership? After all, the odds of success are fairly low. Only about half of new companies with employees survive five years or more, and the survival rate is even lower for firms with no employees.
Green business blues. A majority of business owners say they want to help the environment. So what’s holding them back? A lack of green. One-third of small business owners said the tanking economy has affected their plans to become more environmentally friendly, according to a recent Wells Fargo/Gallup poll. Seventeen percent said their companies are doing “very little or nothing at all” to help the environment. But it’s not their fault, they say. It’s ours. Nearly seventy percent of survey respondents said customers aren’t willing to pay more for environmentally friendly goods and services.
All the news that’s fit to Twitter. Here’s an interesting article about how to get more publicity for your business. It explains that most magazines publish an editorial calendar of upcoming topics they plan on covering throughout the year. The idea is to pitch a story about your company that’s directly related to one of those ed-cal topics. There’s only one problem with this advice: people don’t read magazines anymore. They’re too busy following Ashton Kutcher on Twitter.