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A Decline In Health For Half Of UK Business Owners

The hidden cost of entrepreneurship ...


Posted by Roger Eddowes on 23/05/2024 @ 8:00AM

The dream of being your own boss and running a successful business is often romanticised, but the reality is far from glamorous. A recent survey, conducted by FreeAgent, which included 1,616 small business owners from across the UK painted a worrying picture of the toll entrepreneurship takes on an individual's health ...

If you're a business owner in the UK and you're having health problems, maybe it's time to talk to the Business Godparent?

If you're a business owner in the UK and you're having health problems, maybe it's time to talk to the Business Godparent?

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The findings show that a fifth of respondents believe their mental health has been negatively affected, while 7% reported a decline in their physical health. This is a cause for concern as small businesses are the backbone of the UK economy.

"The well-being of their owners is crucial for their success!"

We all know that entrepreneurs work long hours, with almost two-fifths of respondents working 32-48 hours on average and a further fifth working 48-64 hours. This is consistent with last year's findings by FreeAgent, which showed that a significant number of business owners work in the evenings and on weekends.

This constant pressure to work can have a detrimental effect on health, as it leaves little time for rest and self-care. Moreover, the survey found that 77% of small business owners have worked through an illness, highlighting the lack of support and resources available for entrepreneurs to take time off when needed.

I'm not surprised that the demands of entrepreneurship can take a toll on one's mental and physical health. Running a business requires a lot of dedication, hard work, and sacrifices, and I know from my own experience that it can be a lonely journey.

Entrepreneurs often have to deal with the stress of financial instability, long hours, and the pressure to succeed. This can lead to burnout, anxiety, and other mental health issues. The survey also highlights the impact of these challenges on physical health, with many business owners reporting health issues due to the demands of running a business.

Despite these challenges, it's good to know that the majority of entrepreneurs believe they have a good support network. Talking to many of my own clients, they all enjoy being able to call the Business Godparent and just go for a coffee and talk about their business.

So, there are some positives from the FreeAgent survey, but it also shows that more needs to be done to support small business owners. The UK government has introduced various initiatives and support schemes for small businesses, but there is still a lack of resources and support specifically targeted towards the well-being of entrepreneurs.

More needs to be done to raise awareness about the mental and physical toll of running your own business and provide resources and support for small business owners to prioritise their health!

There is one concerning finding from the survey, and that is that almost two-thirds of respondents plan to work during their holidays. While it is understandable that entrepreneurs may feel the need to attend to some administrative tasks, it is crucial for their well-being to take a complete break from work.

Taking time off to rest and recharge is essential for maintaining good mental and physical health and I regularly tell clients who are stressed out to take a break. The constant pressure to work can also have a negative impact on the quality of work and decision-making.

"And that can ultimately affect the success of the business!"

The survey conducted by FreeAgent highlights the hidden cost of entrepreneurship in the UK and as the Business Godparent, I am deeply concerned. Yes, the demands of running a business can have a significant impact on the mental and physical health of entrepreneurs, so it's time for the government to recognise the importance of supporting small business owners in maintaining their well-being.

If you're an entrepreneur or small business owner in the UK and you're having mental or physical health problems, maybe it's time to talk to the Business Godparent?

Let's see how I can help.

Until next time ...

Business Godparent


Would you like to know more?

If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like to see how the Business Godparent can help you, it may be a great idea to call me on 01908 774320 and let's see how I can help you.

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About Roger Eddowes ...


Roger trained at Edward Thomas Peirson & Sons in Market Harborough before working at Hartwell & Co, followed by Chancery, as a partner. He started Essendon Accounts and Tax with Helen Beaumont in 2014 as a general practitioner with a hands-on approach.

Roger loves getting his hands dirty, working with emerging, small-to-medium and family businesses to ensure they receive the best possible accountancy advice. Roger utilises an extensive network of business contacts to leverage the best guidance and practical solutions.