Canadian Vs American Small Business Owners: The Great Divide

How do Canadian small business owners stack up against their American counterparts?

Pretty well, according to the 2012 Small Business Report by Canadian software firm Wave Accounting.

There are, as expected, many similarities: 85% of Canadian entrepreneurs love what they do for a living, compared with 86% in the US, and both countries’ small business owners agree that being their own boss is the number one motivator.

But Canada’s famously stable recovery from the so-called “Great Recession” has divided our countries in other ways.

34% of American small business owners find the sluggish economy is a problem versus just 21% of Canadians.

However, it seems that despite the current troubles in the US, American entrepreneurs remain more optimistic than the decidedly pragmatic Canadians. In the US, 47% strongly agree the future for their company is bright, compared with only 38% of Canadians. Yet, in the near term, Americans possess pessimism: 43% see the next year as being hard for small businesses versus just 34% of Canadians.

And even though American small business owners tend to rate their companies higher than Canadians do theirs—20% of US entrepreneurs rate their own company a nine or 10 out of 10—it is Canadian small businesses that actually perform in the end: 52% of small business in the US did not earn enough in the last 12 months to meet their families’ needs, while only 38% of Canadians shared the same misfortune.