I recently presented to an audience of procurement professionals from large organisations on the topic of creating better relationships between Small and Large Business.

I was the sole ‘Small Business’ person at the conference, so I had a chance to advocate on behalf of all my Small to Medium Business colleagues.

WHAT ACTUALLY IS A SMALL BUSINESS?

Over lunch on the first day of the conference, one of the attendees asked me a very valid question:

“What actually is a Small Business?”

I replied that I had been planning a blog post on exactly this topic for a while, so it seems that its time has come – prompted by my lunch companion at the conference.

The answer is anything but simple! We use the terms ‘Small Business’ and ‘SME’ rather loosely; perhaps with good reason. If we think of a continuum with my environmental consultancy at one end, and Rio Tinto (one of our clients) at the other end, there’s not much argument to be had.

My company is clearly a Small Business, and Rio Tinto is obviously a large business. (For those who don’t know, Rio Tinto is a major, multinational resources company with revenue of $40 billion.)

BETWEEN THOSE TWO EXTREMES, THERE IS ROOM FOR A LOT OF INTERPRETATION.

Bronwyn Reid

And everyone has a different interpretation.

Here are just a few examples:  Read More

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