Posted: Thu 15th Jun 2023
Enterprise Nation is backing loneliness charity Marmalade Trust, with the aim of supporting isolated entrepreneurs during Loneliness Awareness Week which runs from 12-16 June.
According to Enterprise Nation’s Small Business Barometer, around 65% of small businesses have no employees and 45% are set up as a side hustle, which leaves the majority of small business leaders to do everything on their own, including making critical financial decisions about their future.
While being your own boss is an enormously rewarding and positive experience, being able to tap into a like-minded, supportive community of entrepreneurs and small business owners is also really important, the company stressed.
Enterprise Nation runs free monthly meet-ups in 32 towns and cities in the UK, where business owners can share problems, seek advice or just have a natter with people who have relevant experiences. They are run by a network of local leaders in each area.
Dan Martin, a freelance business journalist based in Bristol, is Enterprise Nation’s Local Leader in the city. His meet-ups often take place in independent cafes and have a loyal following. He said:
"Working for yourself is empowering and rewarding. It can also be more flexible, allowing you to spend more quality time with family. But it can also mean entrepreneurs and freelancers like me can sometimes feel isolated within the business.
"When you work on your own, there are few opportunities for spontaneous quick chats or brainstorms so it can very often feel like you are on your own with things. That’s why building a supportive community and making the effort to meet up can be really helpful.
"Entrepreneurs might not think they are classically lonely, but isolation within the business is a very real thing and that's why we want to get behind the Marmalade Trust to raise awareness and ensure founders know they are not alone."
"Recent research between Marmalade Trust and Nextdoor revealed that 85% of Brits have experienced loneliness in the past year, with 44% feeling chronically lonely.
"Entrepreneurs, who often work in isolation, can be particularly vulnerable to feelings of loneliness - as humans, we are hardwired to need social connection. That’s why we’re committed to raising awareness and reducing the stigma of loneliness.
"This year's Loneliness Awareness Week theme is Connection Matters. We're encouraging people to build small everyday moments of connection to support everyone, everywhere. We're delighted that Enterprise Nation supports Marmalade Trust and is providing resources and support for entrepreneurs seeking connection and community."