The latest Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight surfaces a new and fascinating story about Hispanic small business owners across the nation.
It turns out that Hispanic small business owners are amongst the most positive, most successful, and most loyal entrepreneurs out there. That is the conclusion drawn from the second annual Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight.
The Spotlight surveyed nearly 400 Hispanic small business owners, examining not only their dreams, aspirations, and success, but also where they stood vis-a-vis their non-Hispanic peers. As I said, the results are overwhelmingly positive.
Let me give you an example: When asked about their growth plans for their business over the next five years, 50% of non-Hispanic small business owners said that they planned on growing their business. That’s a robust, optimistic number, right? You bet, except that when asked the same question, fully 77% of Hispanic small business owners said the same thing.
Even more heartening is that 89% of Hispanic entrepreneurs said that they expected the business environment to get even better for them over the next decade.
That good, old-fashioned entrepreneurial enthusiasm is also found when the Hispanic business owners were asked about the overall economy. Whereas 46% of non-Hispanics thought that the economy would improve over the next 12 months, the Hispanic respondents were again even more optimistic with 60% indicating that they thought things would get even better. As a result, Hispanic business owners were more than twice as likely to say that they planned on hiring more people this next year.
Another interesting aspect of this Bank of America Hispanic business owner survey has to do with the impact of cultural heritage on the business. Having married into an entrepreneurial Hispanic family myself, I can attest that it is not an insignificant issue. Mi familia at least is very proud of their heritage and it plays more than a little role in their businesses. The same looks to be true for the survey respondents. For example
- 43% said that their Hispanic heritage helps their business grow: 41% said it has no impact while only 16% said it had a negative impact.
- 42% indicated that their heritage helps them attract customers; 43% said it has no effect while only 15% said it harmed their business
- 35% said their heritage helped them acquire and retain talent. Indicating that America really does strive to be race-neutral, more than half said race has no impact on their hiring with only 13% saying it was a detriment.
Like my own family, the Hispanic culture generally is family-oriented and tight-knit. It turns out that this too translates into business success. According to the survey, 61% of Hispanic small business owners rely on friends and family when it comes to running their business.
Indeed, it is often said that a small business is like a family, and the Hispanic business owners surveyed certainly proved that to be true with their clear propensity to take care of their staff: Hispanic entrepreneurs are twice as likely to have made investing in employees a goal in the last two years compared to non-Hispanics. Some of the things they offer are flex-time (41%), bonuses and rewards (27%), team-building activities (25%), and paid or unlimited vacation (19%.)
The bottom line is that with success and optimism far outpacing their non-Hispanic counterparts, it turns out that Hispanic entrepreneurs are as American as, well, mom and apple pie.
Steven D. Strauss is one of the world's leading experts on small business and is a lawyer, writer, and speaker. The senior small business columnist for USA Today, his Ask an Expert column is one of the most highly-syndicated business columns in the country. He is the best-selling author of 17 books, including his latest, The Small Business Bible, now out in a completely updated third edition. You can also listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business Success.© Steven D. Strauss.
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