WHILE the worldwide economic recovery is still inching along the slow lane there are signs that it may just be ready to move to the middle of the road and beyond this year if research among small businesses is to be believed.
Slowly but surely, more and more business owners are starting to feel confident about the opportunities for their products and services over the next three months, according to a survey.
Demand is expected to rise, with many owners even planning to put prices up as they look to regain some of the margins they have lost over the difficult recent months.
Almost half of small business bosses plan to expand over the next 12 months while only a small percentage believe they will have to scale down operations in that time. Investment in their firms is also an option, while staff numbers will be increased to further boost the recovery.
Salary increases could return too as the momentum gathers pace and investment in businesses is one of the key indicators of a recovering financial outlook across the UK and abroad.
While costs are cut to the bone in many cases, and tight financial planning remains an important factor of any firm’s recovery, businesses know that investment in staff is vital if they are to come out the other side, not just having survived, but also flourishing.
So, without getting too carried away, it’s clear that things are moving in the right direction. And it seems that optimism is now a real sign of the times and ready once again to re-emerge at boardroom tables and staff meetings across the business fraternity.