Nearly half of all Kiwi businesses owners are in it for the lifestyle and have a more enviable existence than their Aussie cousins.
The claims are made in an MYOB study of more than 1000 Kiwi business owners which has revealed Kiwi business owners (44 per cent) appear to better maintain the balance between their working life and family than Australians (35 per cent).
MYOB's general manager Julian Smith said while Kiwis tended to characterise life as easier across the ditch, business owners here were in fact more laid back than in Australia.
"More local business owners have set up their own operations in order to enjoy the freedom and flexibility being a business owner can bring."
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Business owners in Otago/Southland said they were most likely to be able to create a good work/life balance (51 per cent), followed by Taranaki (49 per cent) and Wellington (48 per cent).
Just 38 per cent of business owners in the Bay of Plenty and 35 per cent in the Hawke's Bay see themselves as having work/life balance.
By industry sector, those in finance and insurance (55 per cent) were more likely to see a work life balance as possible, against 32 per cent of business owners in the retail and hospitality sectors who said work/life balance was a myth.
Smith said while it was encouraging to see business owners defining success in more ways than just making a profit, having a largely-focused business segment was not all good news for the economy.
"Business owners that are lifestyle seekers have the lowest confidence in the economy, with just 22 per cent expecting to see improvement in the next 12 months," he said.
"They are also least confident about future revenues, with just 28 per cent expecting increased revenue in the next year, and have less work in the short term."