To enter our Small Business Saturday competition create a short video of yourself, or Tweet, explaining what keeps you motivated to go above and beyond when running your business. Just share on Twitter using the hashtags #SageAdvice #SmallBizSat and you could win an Apple Watch.

Pick up any newspaper, or watch any evening news bulletin and you’ll see story after story about the world’s multi-national and biggest companies. Whether it’s corporate acquisitions, financial results or the start of the seasonal advertising campaigns, big business is the big news. So often, the entrepreneurs who run their own businesses, the true heroes who create two thirds of the jobs in all major economies, are neglected. We think small businesses deserve more airtime, more column inches, given the extraordinary contribution they make.

These entrepreneurs take risks to follow their dreams and pursue their passions and, on this, global prosperity is built. They deserve a bigger voice and we will always work hard to champion their noble cause.

That’s why we’re so pleased to support Small Business Saturday and Small Business Week, the US and UK campaigns of an initiative set up to celebrate small businesses around the holiday season. We’re throwing our full support behind the campaigns in those countries, but we’re also extending the sentiment around the world – with all of our Sage colleagues celebrating the very best entrepreneurs.

So we commissioned some insightful research of entrepreneurs. It showed us the price that these entrepreneurs pay to grow their businesses on which economies depend. Nearly half (46%) of all global business owners work over 40 hours a week. German entrepreneurs are working particularly hard, with 57% working more than 40 hours every week.

The research also shows the real value of the hard hours entrepreneurs put in after the rest of the world goes home –the ‘after hours economy’ – or the ‘beyond the call of duty’ economy. The survey showed that business owners contribute $8.3 trillion to the economy, just with those extra hours and their hard graft.

Sadly, the entrepreneur’s dedication is a story of human sacrifice. People are giving up family time for their businesses. That figure was particularly high in South Africa, where 44% of business owners have chosen their work over their family. Globally, 44% of business owners say that their dedication to their business has affected their personal relationships.

Amazingly, a result of their long working weeks, over half (52%) of German small business owners have cancelled a ‘date’ because of work. This is particularly high compared with the global average of 27%.

We know the story of a business is one of highs, lows and human sacrifice, and these stats tell us that the world over, entrepreneurs are foregoing love, fun and family time to make their dream business idea work. We want you to tell us how you stay motivated. We’re asking people to share a short video clip on Twitter or Facebook, using the hashtags #SageAdvice and #SmallBizSat – and we’ll edit the best ones into a brilliant video celebration of entrepreneurs that we will share with the world.

The very best contributor will win an Apple Watch.

It’s not every day that the world rallies round the true heroes of the economy. Celebrate #SmallBizSat with us and give these champions the credit they deserve.

Stephen Kelly

Sage CEO

Sage will also be running a series of advice sessions, from November 30-December 4. Each will involve a number of Sage spokespeople, including CEO Stephen Kelly, and will address the key challenges of running a small business – as identified by the research. More information will be posted here shortly – keep an eye out!

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