Breaking News
More () »

'It's certainly a juggling act': Small business owners balance supply chain issues, inflation, and worker shortages

The most recent Small Business Optimism Index founds optimism among small business owners is at an all-time low.

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Travis Troy is the president of Honest Wrenches in West Des Moines. The locally-owned auto repair shop is doing its best to roll with the punches from the economy. 

"It's certainly a juggling act," said Troy. "You've got employees that feel the inflation. And then you've got us that buy products and sell products that feel the inflation. But we also don't want to raise our prices any more than we absolutely have to."

Troy says on top of inflation ticking up prices from some vendors, supply chain issues are creating major headaches.  

"We've actually been up against the challenge where they don't have a part and it's weeks on backorder, or most recent, we've been several months," said Troy. 

While Troy and his business partners say they're up to the challenge of striking a delicate balance to keep customers and employees happy, the same can't be said for small business owners across the country. 

"We sort of got some red flags on our latest optimism index," said Matt Everson who works as the Iowa State Director for the National Federation of Independent Businesses. "I think it's the lowest it's ever been for the next six months of optimism."

A recent survey by the National Federation of Independent Businesses found the outlook business owners have for the next 6 months is at the lowest it's ever been in the 48-year history of the survey. 

"They can't lay off a bunch of workers or they can't take it out reserves," said Everson. "Most of our small businesses invest all their money back into the business. We're in some very sticky areas over the next several months."

Before You Leave, Check This Out