Business Wellbeing Online Training

Small business owners from around Australia took part in the successful feasibility and acceptability trial of Business Wellbeing Online Training in 2021.


Small businesses make up 98 per cent of Australian businesses and employ over five million people, as Australia’s largest employer. Small business owners are vital to the Australian economy, and their mental and physical health are important factors in their success. However, small business owners experience symptoms of depression and anxiety at higher rates than the general population.

Our research shows that small business owners have an increased risk of mental ill-health due to the unique business stressors they face. Traditional workplace mental health programs do not meet the specific needs of small business owners, their staff or families.

Everymind developed Business Wellbeing Online Training as part of the Ahead for Business program to help small business owners create a mentally healthy small business. It was co-designed with small business owners to address their unique circumstances. It can be accessed at any time, from anywhere, so that it can be completed when it best suits each individual user.

Reach and impact

Over 270 small business owners participated in the pre-training survey. 63.5% lived and worked in metropolitan areas and 36.5% in rural Australia. Participants included new business owners and those that have run their business for over 30 years.

Over 60 small business owners took part in the post-training survey. 100% found the training easy to understand, and said they would recommend the training to other small business owners.

“The first time I’ve had information that was practical and take-away was in this course.”

Small business owner

Mental health literacy and self-efficacy both increased after completing the training. This means that small business owners felt more confident and able to maintain their own mental health, and support others. The research found that the training is a feasible and acceptable method of sharing mental health and wellbeing information with small business owners.

In the words of some small business owners, the training was “very informative”, “flexible for different workplace environments” and “brief enough to be doable for everyone.”

The Business Wellbeing online training was expanded in 2022 based on the feedback of small business owners in this research trial.

“I would love to be able to access a version for my staff.”

Small business owner

The updated edition includes a brand-new training pathway tailored for small business employees, and new content for small business owners. These new elements recognise the different roles that owners and employees play in creating a mentally healthy workplace.

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