Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) are the lifeblood of the global economy. Although often overshadowed by enterprise counterparts, in reality SMEs are responsible for a large proportion of new jobs in countries around the world and are at the core of competitiveness and innovation.
Almost all SME statistics produced in the last year are focused on the detrimental impact the global Covid-19 pandemic is having on society and business. It is likely the full impact of the pandemic on SME development, job creation and supply chain has yet to be felt or understood. However, we can get some idea of the struggles micro and small businesses around the world have faced:
Research conducted across several countries during the initial stages of the pandemic in 2020 showed:
Fortunately, most research found SME leadership and employees to be resilient people who remained optimistic about making a good recovery:
For many SMEs the Covid-19 crises has accelerated their move to teleworking and digital sales:
Although it has been an incredibly difficult year for SMEs a vaccination programme is the light at the end of the tunnel for most countries. After this we may see a return to a level of normality where SMEs may benefit from pent up demand, particularly in the areas of hospitality and tourism which have been so badly hit.
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