There are many complex policy issues that have a major impact on the small business community. Each week, we’re going to help break one of those issues down so small business owners can stay in the know and remain aware of their stake in these national issues. This week’s Issue Q&A is on minimum wage.
Q: Why is the minimum wage debate so important to small business?
A: Small business owners and the economy are still recovering from the Great Recession. As the nation’s leading job creators, small businesses create the jobs that keep our economy growing. In order to do so, entrepreneurs have to bolster their bottom lines and fuel the consumer demand that underpins economic success. With an increase to the federal minimum wage, consumers will have more money lining their pockets that they will then spend at their local businesses. This surge in consumer demand will push the economy forward and allow small businesses to continue thriving.
Q: How would a raise to the minimum wage impact small businesses?
A: Seeing as how consumer demand is the No. 1 concern for small business owners, a majority of entrepreneurs believe a raise in minimum wage will stoke that demand. According to our scientific polling, 57% of small business owners support increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour and believe it should be adjusted annually to keep pace with the cost of living. In fact, 82% already pay more than the current minimum wage. A majority sees a wage increase as useful in helping them create more jobs, which in turns strengthens our economy as a whole, creating an economic domino effect.
Q: Won’t an increase to the wage raise costs for small businesses?
A: A federally mandated increase would place all small businesses on a level playing field, and would make businesses more competitive because competitors won’t have the upper-hand in undercutting them on labor costs. Small businesses also care about their employees and view them as family, which is why a majority agrees it’s not right for any employee to work full-time and only earn the current minimum wage. A stronger, more loyal workforce will decrease the rate of turnover and training costs, saving small businesses money. Additionally, the more money consumers have in their pockets, the more disposable income they’ll have to spend on small business products and services, allowing small businesses to grow and attract a more talented workforce. To learn more about the positive business impacts on a raised minimum wage, and to read testimonies from real small business owners on why they support increasing the minimum wage, visit http://www.smallbizsayraisethewage.com.