To get a pulse of how small business owners will be voting in the election, BusinessNewsDaily spoke with several business owners to see which issues are most important to them and who they will be voting for on Election Day.
Sam Caucci is the founder of Sales Huddle Group, a sports sales training and advisory team. Caucci's company advises leading sports properties including professional teams and leagues across the globe in the areas of sales skill development, training and strategy. The company employs eight full-time workers and several interns in its offices in New York City, New Jersey, Washington D.C. and Miami.
BusinessNewsDaily: Which candidate will you vote for?
Sam Caucci: Undecided. With the buildup to the August conventions I was expecting both candidates to outline in greater detail their initiatives with regard to the major issues I face as a small business owner. The conventions definitely checked the box for rallying both candidates’ respective bases, however they left me hanging and feeling like I just got done watching seven days of pre-game warm-ups. It is my hope and expectation that my decision will become clearer after watching the upcoming presidential debates. With the lack of concrete plans and expansion on many lofty initiatives, I feel the debates are going to be extremely telling of which candidate can truly handle the issues we will face over the next four years.
BND: What issues are most important to you as a business owner?
SC: It’s all about the economy and jobs. I believe that we have many issues that are facing small business owners, including taxes, regulation and healthcare. I am a firm believer that if we are going to stay focused on fixing the economy and jobs problem then we must stay centered on solutions that will give small business owners the freedom to drive revenue and an environment that in conducive to that growth.
In an area that is only briefly been talked about by both candidates, I believe that the goal of creating new jobs and growing our economy is directly linked to continuous investment in education and skill training for our current and future workforce. At Sales Huddle we see firsthand the staffing and training challenges of companies as we help companies across the sports industry to find, select and train their team. Ensuring that current and future employees are skilled and prepared to execute the jobs that they apply for is critical to ensuring their success and ultimately the success of the organization.
BND: Do you believe that any president can help improve the economy?
SC: Yes. I believe that the office of the President holds the greatest direct impact that any one individual can have on the economic process. That being said, tackling the issues that face our economy is a team sport. It requires elected officials from both sides of the aisle to work together to ensure that we continue to work to get our country back on a track of prosperity for all Americans. The reality that this type of teamwork is required might be frightening for many small business owners and I would be lying if I said it wasn’t a bit concerning for me as well. That being said we must continue to focus on how we, as small business leaders, can do 'our part.' We must continue to work to strengthen the values that are responsible for growing our country to where we are today – hard work, integrity and pride in the quality of our work.
BND: Do you think that either candidate has a real plan for improving things for your business?
SC: I believe that both candidates have a plan for the manner in which they will confront the major issues that affect small businesses. Whether they communicate the details of their plans is a different story. From the Romney campaign, I hear a message of reducing taxes to give small businesses the means to create jobs, decrease regulation and red tape, and restructure Obamacare. From Obama, I hear a message of lowering startup costs for entrepreneurs, increased deductions as part of a simpler tax code, and tax credits for new investments. Like many of my clients and other small business owners, I will be listening intently to the debates to see how serious these candidates are and sound regarding broad initiatives.
BND: What do you think of Obamacare and how does it affect your business?
SC: The cost of providing healthcare is undoubtedly a concern for small business owners. As a company with less than 20 employees, the direct impact to our organization is more positive than negative. In my opinion, Obamacare is here to stay and it is the responsibility of small business owners to prepare and plan accordingly. It is important to note that we must look at healthcare through a big picture view of where we will be as a country over the next five to ten years, taking into account economic growth, creation of new jobs and reducing the deficit. The argument that the Affordable Care Act will somehow have a negative impact on economic growth or decrease jobs is premature. As a small business owner we must stay focused on growth and driving sales, while at the same time being innovative in our approach to strengthening and growing our employees.