Is It Possible To Juggle A Small Business And A Family?

Image of businesswoman juggling a laptop and baby toysYell Business has asked 1,500 small business owners for their views on several aspects of their business; from where they work, how they approach marketing and how often their email encroaches on their private life. The parents in the sample[1] offered some interesting insights into juggling a small business with parenthood.

Day rate

On average, parents will accept a lower daily rate for their services than non-parents (£170 per day compared to £186 per day of non-parents) which is surprising considering the level of additional financial commitment that comes with being a parent. But despite accepting a lower day rate on average, small business owning parents make 18% more annual profit than non-parents (£56,300 v £47,600), dispelling any myth that parents could struggle balancing the running of their small business with their family life.


There was a large leap in profit between parents with children aged 3-4 and those with children aged 5-6, as the latter group made the most annual profit at over £84,541 (more than double the £41,325 profit small business owning parents with a child of 3-4 made).


Working from home

More than half (54%) of small business owners that are parents work from home the majority of the time, but less than half (46%) of small business owners think they’re most productive working from home. Interestingly, there are slightly more small business owners working from home the majority of the time that don’t have children (58%).

Switching off from work

81% of parents’ work over the weekend and 63% work seven days a week, demonstrating how small business owning parents give themselves little time to switch off. Over half of parents check their emails throughout the evening (53%), while 40% find it hard to switch off from work, and 14% claim to never take breaks. More than 4 out of 10 (41%) small business owning parents check their email as soon as they wake up in the morning, almost 1 in 3 (32%) check their emails while on holiday, and almost 1 in 10 (9%) are so worried about work that they check their emails in the middle of the night.

Concerns vs. success

The top three hardest parts of being a business owner if you’re a parent includes the admin (28%), the risk of failing (27%) and unpaid sickness and holiday (26%) However, 79% of parents consider their small business quite or very successful which is significantly more than the 67% of non-parents who think the same. Some of the small business owning parents surveyed[2] told us that their reasons for starting a business, which included “it enables me to spend time with my daughter” and “no childcare costs”.

More information about how to be successful as a small business

Yell Business is running a piece of research evaluating the thoughts of 1,500 SME owners in 2016 as well as an additional piece of research of 1,500 consumers to assess their views of small businesses. The results are likely to make for interesting reading and we’ll be releasing various insights into small businesses over the coming months.


[1] 847 parents in the sample

[2] Free text answers