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Schools Don't Prepare Kids for Work Says Survey from York-based Hiscox


8:05am 4th September 2013
(Updated 8:08am 4th September 2013)

An new international report by York-based insurers Hiscox, reveals schools aren't preparing kids for the world of work in the eyes of small business bosses.

69% of small business owners in Yorkshire are most likely to say that this country’s education system doesn’t encourage individual ideas and dreams. That's compared to a UK average of 58%.

The report also shines a light on entrepreneurs who are adapting to this ‘new economic normal’ and have responded to the on-going and challenging trading conditions with determination and innovation. 25% of the UK-based small businesses surveyed as part of this report said they have launched a new product or service within the last year, and nearly two thirds of small businesses across the 6 countries surveyed are planning to launch another one in the next year.

But what remains a worry is the decline in optimism and growth amongst small business owners. Just over a third (37%) said that revenues had increased in the past year, that figure has fallen from 46% in 2012.  At the same time, just under half (47%) reported customer growth compared with 60% in 2012, and just over half (51%) said their customers were taking longer to pay – putting increased strain on already vulnerable businesses.

The research also asked respondents what activities they felt constituted 'work' and highlighted major variations between countries. Surprisingly, 45% of all respondents counted travelling to and from work as work, and 37% considered they were working if they ate lunch at their desk. The British had the most elastic definition of work in three categories: lunching, networking and attending to emails out of hours.

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