‘No such thing as small business’: Mark Bouris cops heat over his latest bit of advice

Mark Bouris

Mark Bouris. Source: AAP Image/Mick Tsikas.

Entrepreneur Mark Bouris has sparked a heated debate on social media after declaring the term ‘small business’ is “demeaning” and “blatantly inaccurate”.

Bouris posted a photo of himself to Linkedin earlier this week wearing a “there’s no such fkn thing as small business” t-shirt, advising his 356,665 followers to ditch the term.

“To call someone a small business is demeaning,” he professed.

“It’s a reference to their status. To call a whole industry small is blatantly inaccurate and a put-down.”

The post, which has since attracted 370 comments, has sparked a heated debate, splitting opinion among business owners who have responded to the post.

One business owner said she was “taken aback” by the suggestion.

“What is wrong with calling a spade a spade? It seems political correctness gone haywire,” the business owner said.

“It’s unfortunate that some people believe that calling someone a small business is demeaning,” another commented.

Others agreed with Bouris.

“Everyone will want that t-shirt,” one small-business owner said.

The Yellow Brick Road founder also drew the ire of COSBOA chief executive Peter Strong and SME mental health advocate Leanne Faulkner over the post.

“With well over 60% of us working as sole-operators of course we’re small! That’s our world and we need to remind everyone of it! Recognising who we are, understanding how we work and contribute is KEY,” Faulkner said.

There have been plenty of disagreements in the small-business space about how the community should be defined in the past.

Australian laws and regulators have varying definitions of small business, although all accept and use the term itself.

What do you think? Should the term ‘small business’ be abandoned? Let us know at [email protected] or comment below.

SmartCompany contacted Bouris for comment but did not receive a response prior to publication.

NOW READ: What’s the difference between a small business and a startup?

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Michael Stapleton
Michael Stapleton
2 years ago

The reactions to that post could be split between the Bouris acolytes (completely accepting, totally uncritical of their man) and everyone else with the ability to think for themselves.

Michael Ratner
Michael Ratner
2 years ago

The definition of Small Business is in the eyes of the beholder.
All businesses are small or most businesses are small.
Mark Bouris is 100% correct.
And by the way if you doubt this – all you have to do is start a big business –
Given time it’s guaranteed to become a Small Business. It won’t even take much effort.
There’s a big debate out there.
I’ve got a feeling that businesses are hamstrung by their inability to develop meaningful relationships with access to capital….. JUST IN CASE they really start small and want to get bigger.

Ed Shyed
Ed Shyed
2 years ago

be proud if your a small business – because thats what you are, stop trying to be something you’re not, thats dishonest, lets not forget some companies (and many citizens) will only deal with small business because they know they get personal service 99.99% of the time. If your earning under 10 million a year you’re a small business, everyone excepts that – even both sides of Govt.

Michael Ratner
Michael Ratner
2 years ago
Reply to  Ed Shyed

Like your style – UNDER $10 million.
Might have thought that in the $1million would have fitted in with my perception of not small but worthwhile – hard working – brave people.

Fabio Braga
Fabio Braga
2 years ago

Small in turn-over, yes. Small in terms of tasks? No way!
I haven’t worked this much ever when I was an employee but in the other hand I was never as happy and accomplished as I currently am.
Bottom line? It depends on whether you see yourself, mate: for the ATO, small; for me, big!