SME owners not identifying as entrepreneurs

Small business owners are unlikely to consider themselves entrepreneurs, research by AXA has found.

Less than half of individuals questioned identified with the title ‘entrepreneur’ and a similar number rejected the label altogether.

However, the research found differences between age, gender and region:

  • 82% of small business owners under 24 claim to be entrepreneurs, compared with 32% of over 55s
  • 52% of men see themselves as entrepreneurs but only 38% of women feel the same
  • 60% of respondents in the north east identify as an entrepreneur, compared to 39% in the rest of England.

Darrell Sansom, managing director at AXA Business Insurance, commented on why small businesses don’t always identify themselves as entrepreneurs:

“I think it’s partly explained by the word ‘rich’, the idea an entrepreneur is someone who flies in from New York every day. It’s also this notion of being a ‘risk taker’ which is rather uncomfortable.

“Risk is a huge part of any business – just as much for a man in a van with a plastering business as for a tycoon. You’re not risking millions every day, but you’re still staking your financial future on your business and taking on legal liability on behalf of employees and customers.

“Whether you call yourself entrepreneur or not, getting the right protection in place – insurance, sound financial practice and securing your property (intellectual, digital and physical) is crucial to your survival.”

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