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Millennial small biz owners: More prepared in 4 key areas

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When it comes to preparing for the future, millennial small-business owners are seemingly the most concerned generation in recent history, new research shows.

So reports Nationwide in a new Small Business Indicator study, which the insurer conducted online June 10-23, 2016. Respondents comprised 502 U.S. small-business owners of companies with fewer than 300 employees, among them 190 millennials (ages 18-35), 152 Gen Xers (ages 36-50) and 106 baby boomers (ages 51-65).

Related: Millennials mooch off their parents now but plan to support them financially later

The report reveals that millennials are more likely than Gen Xers or baby boomers to have plans for natural disasters, retirement benefits, cyberattacks and business succession.

“Our survey challenges some common perceptions of millennials,” said Mark Berven, president of Nationwide Property & Casualty. “By far, these individuals are the most prepared — and concerned — generation of business owners in recent history.”

For the second year in a row, Nationwide’s annual Small Business Indicator focused on 4 key topics impacting business operations:

    • disaster recovery

    • retirement planning

    • cybersecurity; and (new to the 2016 survey)

    • business succession.

But the generational data had some of the most significant differences in percentages among small-business owners:


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Millennial small business owner

There were about 80 million millennials is the U.S. as of 2012, according to Time magazine. Many of them are savvy entrepreneurs. (Photo: iStock)

    • Disaster recovery: Millennials are most likely to have a disaster recovery plan in place (51 percent), versus Gen X (30 percent) or boomers (29 percent).

    • Retirement planning: Millennials are most likely to offer retirement benefits (59 percent); they are also most likely to offer employees any of the following benefits: (84 percent), versus Gen X (60 percent) or baby boomers (46 percent): medical insurance, paid time off, retirement benefits (e.g., 401(k)), workers’ compensation, dental insurance, vision insurance, life insurance, short-term disability, long-term disability and domestic partner benefits.

    • Cyber security: More Millennials have a written cyberattack response plan in place (42 percent), versus Gen X (17 percent) or baby boomers (12 percent).

    • Business succession: Millennials are most likely to currently have a business succession plan in place (61 percent), versus Gen X (32 percent) or Baby Boomers (32 percent).

While the reasons for millennials’ preparedness vary by individual, they’re now the largest, most educated and most diverse generation in the U.S., according to the Council of Economic Advisers. They are also the first generation to have had access to the Internet during their formative years. And many of them joined the workforce in an era of great economic uncertainty.

“Some of our survey data may seem surprising,” Berven said. “But if you think about the risks many Millennials have experienced and grown up with — everything from cyberattacks to an economic meltdown — it makes sense that they would be some of the most concerned individuals out there. They want to protect what matters most to them — their business.”

For more information about the survey, visit Nationwide’s millennial page.

See also: 

6 ways to market life insurance to millennials

Millennials are pretty cocky about their investing skills

Bankrate survey: Retirement savings at record levels

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