Tradies prefer keeping their business within the family

Australian tradies are favouring family members when it comes to who they hire but tend to exclude their spouses on business decisions.

These are the findings of a survey by  business coaching organisation The Game Changers, involving businesses such as  builders, carpenters, electricians and plumbers.

Keeping it in the family

The survey reveals that 50 per cent of the business owners have employed one of more family members and only one in 10 business owners consulted with their spouse on all, or most, business decisions.

Barry Magliarditi, Founder and CEO of The Game Changers, said the survey provided some surprising insights. \

“The statistics show that family-run businesses are still very prevalent in Australia,” Magliarditi said. “While the percentage is only small, it’s interesting that two per cent of respondents had at least four family members working for them, which is quite unique.”

“In stark contrast, it seems this trust in the business isn’t being extended to spouses, with only a small percentage consulting their spouse on business decisions.”

Times are tough for tradies

The survey also revealed the biggest pain points for Australian tradies, with 60 per cent struggling with cashflow and attaining a healthy profit margin.

However, despite these challenges and the declining trading conditions and profitability seen in the past year, small trade-based business owners were optimistic about their business’ future. 63 per cent expected to be in better financial shape in the next 12 months, and a further 24 per cent anticipated performance would remain the same. Only 13 per cent forecast the business would be in worse shape.

The survey also revealed that 31 per cent of respondent tradies said they established the business because they were good at what they do, but struggled with the business side. A further 49 per cent said that while the business was in good shape, they say more improvements can be made.

“This research highlights that as is often the case with businesses, particularly trade-related businesses, the owner is good at their trade, but not very good at running a business,” Magliarditi said.

“They haven’t actually been given the tools to run a profitable business that ultimately works without them, which should be a goal to aim for. Instead, they stick on the tools and work huge hours to keep the wheels turning, as they also try to fit in the estimating, quoting, staff management, project management and all the other tasks needed to manage operations while creating a viable pipeline. Often they simply don’t have these abilities in their core skill sets.”

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