One on one support for small business
Published Sunday, 08 August, 2021 at 12:40 PM
Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
The Honourable Di Farmer
Queensland small business owners are being reminded that as well as financial assistance, one on one and mental health support is available from the Palaszczuk Government.
Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said that while the global pandemic had brought tough economic challenges, there are psychological ones too.
“We know that the best thing we can do for small businesses during these incredibly challenging and stressful times is to keep up our strong health response to allow for a strong economic response,” Minister Farmer said.
“We want to keep our lockdowns short and sharp, keep our economy going, and ensure businesses can open and trade again as soon as possible.
“We’ve seen this early and hard approach work well again with the SEQ lockdown ending at 4pm today, and we’re acting quickly in Cairns and Yarrabah to get on top of the virus there as soon as possible.
“But COVID has had a devastating impact, and small business owners are doing it incredibly tough.
“I know from speaking directly with small business owners, as well as to our peak bodies that represent them, that the last 18 months have been amongst the most difficult many businesses have ever faced.
“The stress involved in running your own business through these uncertain and changing times cannot be understated, and I want to thank small business owners for everything they’re doing and remind them of the ways the government might be able to help.
“We have made the officer of the Queensland Small Business Commissioner permanent, to provide dedicated information and advice to small business.
“The Commissioner recently worked with the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training, the Queensland Mental Health Commission and Beyond Blue to develop a practical guide to help small businesses.”
Queensland Small Business Commissioner Maree Adshead said the mental health and wellbeing of small business owners and staff is more important now than ever.
“That’s why we created ‘A small business owner's guide to creating a mental health and wellbeing plan’,” Ms Adshead said.
“It helps small businesses to identify stressors and red flags, find available support, and develop practical strategies.”
Minister Farmer said there were other programs that helped small businesses.
“Sometimes what you really need is to talk to someone one on one and get tailored support and advice about your own business and your own circumstances.
“That’s certainly the feedback I heard on our Small Business Roadshow earlier this year. Businesses wanted people who could walk alongside them and help them one on one, particularly with all the curveballs COVID is throwing our way. That’s why we’ve tailored our financial and support packages to reflect those needs.
“Our free Mentoring for Growth program matches small business owners with experienced mentors who can provide this one on one guidance. These business experts can provide insights, options and suggestions relating to challenges and opportunities you are experiencing in your business.
“There are also Small Business Financial Counsellors who offer free, impartial and independent assistance. They can assess and prepare reports, identify appropriate business options, and help you develop an action plan.
“This is in addition to our $260 million COVID-19 Business Support Grants, our $25 million small business grant program, our Big Plans for Small Business package, and $460 million for our flagship employment programs.
“To help things be as quick and as easy as possible for small business owners we have our online Business Assistance Finder - which helps businesses see what local, state, and federal support is available to them - and Business Health Check tools, as well as personalised support to take on apprentices and trainees.
“The Business Queensland website provides resources on mental health and wellbeing, including resources from Beyond Blue to help business owners look after themselves and their staff.
“The site also directly links to mental health tools and resources from the Queensland Mental Health Commission, Department of Health and many other organisations to help people find suitable information and support.”
For further information visit www.business.qld.gov.au/mental-health or call 1300 654 687
The Small Business Owner’s Guide to Creating a Mental Health and Wellbeing Plan is available here: https://bit.ly/3s0J8Mm
More information on Mentoring for Growth is here: https://bit.ly/2WVZ0nH
The COVID-19 business assistance finder is here: www.business.qld.gov.au/covid-assistance
Media contact: Kate Talbot 0439 803 211