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When you think of small businesses, what comes to mind? Do you think of people like myself who work alone as a self-employed freelancer or a small local shop? Whichever it is you are not wrong, the term “small business” covers a huge variety of businesses and they have all been affected in some way by the pandemic. Today I wanted to share a little from my opinion of how the pandemic affects small businesses.

Two feet on a rug with a hand holding a drink

Cleaning and small businesses

When you think of pubs and cafes it is easy to look at the big brands like Wetherspoon and cafe chains like Costa. The reality is these businesses have so many sites and so many income streams. The owners behind these businesses have more flexibility and can change their cleaning regimes much more easily.

Can you imagine having to up your cleaning regime when you have equipment like the large washer machines, scrubber dryers and a whole bank of cleaning staff? Yes of course it will cost you more but not as much of a difference as a small business will encounter.

Imagine running a little cafe with just 2 staff and suddenly having to pay for different cleaning equipment or closing if you test positive for Covid and having to arrange a deep clean despite being unwell yourself? The cost of hand sanitisers etc soon adds up but a conscientious business still wants to keep their customers safe.

Financial implications of covid

The government has helped greatly with many businesses but this is where there are some massive issues. If you started your business too recently then you were not eligible for government help despite it perhaps being your only income.

One thing I have noticed too is that the most recent government grant to small businesses you had to still be impacted at this point and lost income if you had lost income and not tried to replace it you were ineligible, yet those furloughed didn’t have to look for another job to get their 80% how is that fair?

All this said, look how many big businesses like the Arcadia group are going into administration. Maybe Covid is just messing up everything for everyone in some way, except the supermarkets, they seem to be doing just fine!

The mental impact of Covid and 2020

The worries of income, clients and generally keeping a business afloat this year has definitely impacted me mentally and I am lucky in that in some ways I have not been affected too much at all. I have lost some business, found that when it comes to income we are pretty fortunate in that my partner is a civil servant so hasn’t lost his job or been furloughed, but I have still found it blooming tough mentally.

How have you found your mental health to be this year? Do you run a small business or have been affected by losing your job or being furloughed? I will be glad when this year is over, won’t you! Hopefully, 2021 will be better!

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