By D. Ray Tuttle
Courtesy of The Journal Record
TULSA – Nearly two-thirds of Oklahoma entrepreneurs responding to an online survey reported higher revenues during the last half of 2013 and 81 percent of those expect higher revenue in the first half of this year.
The survey, operated by the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, included 44 Oklahoma companies with at least $1 million in annual revenue, said Ryan Meyer, a spokesman for the Alexandria, Va., company. Founded in 1987, the EO is a global network of more than 8,000 business owners in 40 countries.
Overall, the average respondent grossed $2.6 million in revenue and EO Oklahoma companies employ 2,588 people, according to the EO. The results from the survey underscore that Oklahoma businesses are thriving and building the current economic climate, said Gabe Bass, EO Oklahoma Chapter president.
Oklahoma businesses will continue growing and the market should rebound in a positive way, Bass said.
“The survey is conducted twice each year at the same time,” Meyer said in an email. “Fall and spring were chosen because those seasons get a higher response rate than in summer and around the holidays in winter.”
The online survey is sent to more than 9,500 EO members around the world. Those surveyed believed the economy is moving in a positive direction, with 88 percent reporting positive feelings about starting a new business in the next six months, Meyer said.
By focusing on entrepreneurs, EO sees the survey results as being at the front of business trends, Meyer said.
EO officials noticed several trends, Meyer said.
“We’ve seen that the midsized, entrepreneurial firms have performed better through the economic downturn than large corporations, most likely because they are more nimble and able to adapt more quickly to changing conditions,” Meyer said. “Another trend we’ve noticed is that entrepreneurs see opportunity, and chase it aggressively, during times of upheaval and change.”
Jobs numbers, revenues and profitability of the surveyed firms show that the business owners able to pivot during the early stages of the recession are reaping the benefits now.
Another trend is that entrepreneurs are optimists, Meyer said.
“At the worst of the recession, still more than 80 percent of entrepreneurs reported that they would be willing to start a new business despite the climate,” Meyer said.
Despite reported economic fatigue, the number hasn’t wavered much throughout the years, Meyer said.
The survey results are similar to the responses from members around the globe, Meyer said. The results indicated that 61 percent of entrepreneurs around the world experienced higher revenues in the past six months, 76 percent of entrepreneurs are upbeat about their revenue in the next six months and 84 percent of entrepreneurs around the world are hopeful about starting new ventures in the coming six months.