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(Ilya Andriyanov/Getty Images/iStockphoto)
(Ilya Andriyanov/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

small business briefing

Taking the pulse of U.S. small business on election day Add to ...

The latest news and information for entrepreneurs from across the web universe, brought to you by the Report on Small Businessteam. Follow us on Twitter @GlobeSmallBiz.

How small businesses are feeling as they head to the polls

How are U.S. small businesses feeling on this closely contested  election day? “Discouraged about the future of their businesses and worried about the direction of the economy, and most are disappointed with their options at the top of the ballot,” assesses this piece in The Washington Post.

As the piece continues, “in the past month, nearly every survey of small business owners has reeked of pessimism and frustration as employers pull back on hiring and brace for continued uncertainty even after the elections.”

In the days leading up to the election, The Wall Street Journal ‘s latest small business CEO survey found that Barack Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s differences on health care, the economy and access to capital were seen as more important than where they stood on taxes, according to this piece.

Back in September, the Journal’s monthly survey of small business owners, done with Vistage International, an organization for senior-level executives, found that more than two-thirds of respondents planned to vote for Mr. Romney, compared with 19 per cent for Mr. Obama.

Yet more than half expected the president to be re-elected while 30 per cent said Mr. Romney would come out the winner.

Another survey showed similar leanings on both vote intentions and outcome expectations, this Boston Globe piece points out, (though the Manta survey released in early October found that the 47 per cent of voters saying they would pick Mr. Romney had dropped 14 per cent, while the 35 per cent picking Obama had risen 9 per cent from its previous poll).

Yet, with fewer than 24 hours before voting kicked in, another poll of more than 2,600 small business owners showed the pro-Romney trend continued even stronger, with 72 per cent in favour, versus 28 per cent for President Obama.

Another survey taken with about a week to go until election day found that 54 per cent of small business owners felt their concerns had not been well-represented in the election and 45 per cent felt neither candidate had a strong platform to deal with small-business concerns.

The Boston Globe’s overall observation: “Those who are frustrated with the economy, or worried about the nation’s debt, said they are backing Romney. Voters who were most concerned about the cost of health care, job opportunities for middle-class workers, and issues of social justice said they are supporting Obama.”

Meanwhile, small business owners are not putting any big decisions into place until after election day results are in, finds another poll reported by the Washington Business Journal.

If nothing else, this USA Today piece offered up five lessons that entrepreneurs can take away from the presidential candidates for their own businesses, and here are another seven takeaways.

From premier to entrepreneur

Former Ontario premier Mike Harris and his wife Laura have taken the entrepreneurial path, launching a Nurse Next Door home care services franchise to serve seniors in Toronto, according to this release. Ms. Harris, a trained registered nurse who has launched businesses before, including Stadium Hostessing Services Inc., will run the day-to-day operations.


Legalize crowdfunding?

Attend Technicity.ca to learn more about “innovative investment with crowdfunding.” The Nov. 29 event will include brainstorming ways to make equity crowdfunding legalized in Ontario and its status and success elsewhere. For more details, click here.

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Global Entrepreneurship Week is coming up, Nov. 12 to Nov. 18. The Canadian Youth Business Foundation is official host of GEW Canada 2012. For events occurring in Canada, click here.

Small Business Summit Toronto

Registered yet for The Globe and Mail’s Small Business Summit? It will take place in Toronto on Nov. 22. For more information on the day-long event for entrepreneurs, click here.


A pro’s guide to managing your reputation online

Whether a compliment or a complaint, you need to attend to what others are saying about you on the Internet. In Chris Griffiths’ latest column, Yelp’s marketing director offers advice.


How to handle negative publicity online

In two excerpts from his book, Manage Your Online Reputation, published last year, lawyer and Small Business columnist Tony Wilson discussed how to track what they’re saying about you online , and how to handle negative publicity online.

Got a tip on news, events or other timely information related to the small-business community? E-mail us at smallbusiness@globeandmail.comJoin The Globe’s Small Business LinkedIn group to network with other entrepreneurs and to discuss topical issues: http://linkd.in/jWWdzTOur free weekly newsletter is now available. Every Friday a team of editors selects the top picks from our blog posts, features, multimedia and columnists, and delivers them to your inbox. If you have registered for The Globe’s website, you can sign up here . Click on the Small Business Briefing checkbox and hit ’save changes.’ If you need to register for the site, click here .


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