Employees, customers, keys to success: CFIB survey

Good business goes beyond a business plan, findings show.

A sound business plan and products are good, but dedicated employees and loyal customers are what really count when it comes to small business success, according to a Canadian Federation of Independent Business survey.

The majority of small and mid-sized business owners ranked employees (62%) and customer loyalty (60%) as the top reasons for their success, just ahead of their own hard work (59%). The people who work for, and frequent their businesses also trumped what business owners are selling: just over half–54% of respondents pointed to products and services as a key factor in what makes their businesses work, findings from the CFIB’s Secrets of Entrepreneurial Success survey reveal.

Passion is also important, the respondents note, as is innovation (18%), family support (17%) and a defined business plan (11%).

“Clearly there is much more to running a successful business than just having a business plan,” Doug Bruce, CFIB’s vice-president of research, said in releasing the findings.

Community involvement also yields rewards, according to the results, which credit local hiring (85%), financial donations (74%), sports sponsorships (59%) and charity promotion (47%) for strong ties to local areas and residents.

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