Small Business Owner Resume & Writing Guide

When you are a Small Business Owner and scouting for a new position, buying into another small business, or even applying for contracts and tenders, you need a stellar resume. It is essential first to check out a top-notch Small Business Owner resume sample.

You want to make sure your resume stands out from the rest by being both informative and entertaining to read without overwhelming the potential sponsor, prospective partner, or funding manager with irrelevant information.

How you create a resume into an interview-winning document, we will explain to you in detail below with our: How to make a Resume Guideline for Small Business Owner Roles

Small Business Owner Resume Sample

Small Business Owner Resume Guide:

Resume Sections

1. Contact Information:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Be sure to include alternative contact channels, as well as your LinkedIn profile or Facebook URL details

2. Profile Summary:
View this as the introduction to your resume and include 1-3 sentences giving a broad overview of your background, years of industry experience and the industry sectors of interest. You should be specific and state which job you are applying to.

3. Qualifications Summary:
Provide accurate details about the certifications and qualifications you have completed with the institution, qualification name, and dates. Don’t forget to include the qualifications you are currently completing too.

4. Relevant Ownership Experience:
Clearly state your employment history from providing details regarding the last ten years of experience up until your current position. Use brief sentences with bullet points to list the most important managerial and supervisory duties under each role you have had.

5. Other Employment Experience:
This will include projects or work history which shows your career progression into the Small Business Owner position you may occupy at present, but only elaborate on these with job descriptions if you have less than years of experience in a Small Business Owner role.

Otherwise, just list job title company and duration as to make sure there are no gaps in your employment history. This section is especially important if you are on a level slightly more junior than a Small Business Owner.

You need to reveal your supervisory and managerial experience gained unofficially while for instance in a vocational or temporary job to showcase your abilities to supervise and lead teams and oversee operational and financial duties.

6. Skills Summary/Key Skills: Incorporates keywords from the job posting and your specific skill set. This adds much-needed credibility to your resume.

7. Education/Licenses/Certifications/Relevant Coursework/Training: Start with your formal degrees and post-school diplomas or accreditations like an MBA. List any professional development that better prepared you to work in the management field such as leadership training, employee development workshops and business management courses

What to Highlight in a Small Business Owner Resume

Regardless of your experience as a Small Business Owner, there are a few vital things that companies, sponsors and financial service providers need to know about you to ensure that you are the right fit for their investment. (Also see Small Business Sales Manager Resume Guide)

Small Business Owners have operational and strategic responsibilities, and they are often the last man standing when crises hit.

Business Owners operate their own companies and handle responsibilities such as creating business plans, arranging to finance, hiring staff, reviewing sales, developing marketing strategies, overseeing daily activities, and identifying business opportunities.

The first aspect to highlight is the scope of your work tenure in product type or industry area.

There are millions of businesses out there with every imaginable product or solution. It would be best if you were specific about the product type or service offering you have experience in from a technical perspective (industry knowledge), a financial perspective (budgets, cash flow), operational perspective (sales, logistics, procurement) as well as a human resources (supervising people) perspective.

While this job does require you to take control and delegate responsibilities to other workers, Small Business Owners get their hands just as dirty as their workers and staff members.

Although delegation is key, Small Business Owners often have to step in during times of crises and engage in activities like dealing with customers, answering phones, filing paperwork, training new employees, cleaning the store/office and covering shifts when staff are sick or pick up products and merchandise from suppliers.

Next comes the targets, goals and production metrics that the employees under your supervision need to achieve.

Be number specific here and provide actual data. For example, as a Small Business Owner, you can mention the 1 million turnovers made in the second quarter with average sales value per rep at $30 000.

This shows that you can analyze sales statistics, which is necessary to determine sales potential and inventory requirements and monitor the preferences of customers.

self employed collection information statement

Next, employers, sponsors, financial service providers, and prospective business partners want to see the range of budgets you have experience overseeing. One of the main tasks of a Small Business Owner is to allocate resources (human or financial) to specific projects like marketing campaigns or product launches.

In larger organizations, these are usually handled by the marketing or advertising team, but these are tasks Small Business Owners are often responsible for.

There is a big difference between $5k projects and $1.5M projects. This information should be in your summary, as well as your position descriptions.

You may also need to mention the project management tools you are familiar with as you will often be the superuser or platform administrator on these applications (Zoho Projects, Resource Guru, GamePlan and Aggio)

*Cool Tip for a stellar resume

You can really create an excellent first impression by breaking your job description down into the main responsibility areas of a Small Business Owner:

  • Planning
    Creating and updating business plans and marketing plans. Structure short, medium, and long term financial plans. Prepare budgets and approve budgetary expenses. Determine discount rates and pricing schedules. Conduct sales forecasts and establish sales targets. Schedule implementation of career development and training plans.
  • Organizing
    A Small Business Owner’s job is often a juggling exercise of numerous activities. You must be able to stay focused during crisis times and delegate tasks to employees to keep business running smoothly.
  • Leading
    You will have several people you need to supervise in addition to handling general complaints, last-minute production schedule changes, warehousing problems. Small Business Owners are leaders that operate in the trenches of operations and service delivery.
  • Controlling
    Responsible for statutory compliance and adhering to state and federal regulations. Review operational activity records and reports to compare actual vs. target outcomes. Manage profitability ratios. Monitor internal and external stakeholder preferences to determine the focus of sales efforts.
  • Recruiting & Training
    Small Business Owners are usually the ones responsible for recruiting and interviewing prospective candidates and shortlist the top three for final interviews with the senior manager. They are also responsible for training and onboarding newcomers.

Make sure to include the following details

  • GPA score if you have completed a Bachelor’s or Associate’s degree. (if higher than 3.5)
  • The number of employees you are managing as well as the headcount figures of any admin staff.
  • The business management tools you are familiar with like WorkEtc, Zoho, Adios, 1CRM, and Booker to name but a few.
  • Sound financial management one of the main pillars contributing to small business success (Freshbooks, InDinero, Floats, SosInventory, Expensify)
  • If you use HR management tools, mention these as well (Zenefits, ZenPayroll, SpiderGroups, i-Sight, OpenElevator)
  • Also mention the sales management platforms and customer relationship management (CRM) platforms you are familiar with like Sage, SAP, Oracle, and Vanguard, Lotus Notes.
  • Remember to include communication and collaboration tools, for instance, cloud-based systems like Slack, Trello, Asana or even Skype which you are currently using to facilitate communication between team members.

Career Summary & Examples

Hiring managers, banks, and sponsors have large numbers of hundreds of applications to screen and limited time to read them all in detail.

Keep your career summary concise and to the point. Put the most relevant information first to capture their attention while they’re quickly scanning your resume.

Start your career summary with your years of experience in the industry and the primary duties you performed.

When deciding what duties to add, use the job description as your guide. For instance, if the job you are applying to highlights leading and motivating teams use those same words and phrases.

The more your resume resonates with the job description of keywords, the better fit you will seem.

Next, add a line that showcases any outstanding qualities that will add value to the company. A funding manager or business scout would be interested to know if you have “strong coordination skills, creative leadership abilities and a flair for statistics, metrics and production ratios.”

It’s important to note that these qualities should be proven with examples in the professional experience section to re-enforce your message.

Finally, end your summary with your educational degrees/diplomas and any certified courses or professional memberships you may have that are pertinent to the job.


Career Summary example 1
Business Owner with 15 years’ experience in a service environment solely responsible for all marketing communications, branding, PR, advertising, search engine optimization activities. Built client base from 0 to 60 clients, achieving annual gross sales of $400,000. Average debt-cycle is 60 days and profit to earnings ratio has been at 30% for the last five years. Holds an MBA and various business management certifications.

Career Summary example 2
Young business professional, with five years’ entrepreneurial experience in the automotive products industry. Highly competent in problem-solving and ascertaining client needs. Poised, resourceful manager and adaptable to any environment. Organizational ability to handle multiple priorities and deadline situations. A self-starter and a nimble learner, who believes in continuous innovation and reinvention. Holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management and is currently serving as CEO of the BNI network in the county.

Small Business Owner Resume Job Descriptions

An employer or prospective business partner would expect to see the following proven foundational duties and skill sets within an applicant’s resume, depending on educational level and career stage.

Small Business Owner roles are available in virtually every industry, but we have selected a few examples below to get you started.

Use these short versions in conjunction with the standard responsibilities described earlier in the ‘’cool tips for a stellar resume section’’ to beef up your experience.

A Small Business Owner in Cellular and Telecoms may:

  • Ensure that equipment and machinery are adequately maintained and promptly repaired by assigned workers.
  • Market products such as wireless, cellular, merchant services, television and more focusing on bottom-line savings and value.
  • Utilize customer statements to analyze savings and potential value-added services.
  • Promotion via social media platforms to improve brand identity and generate warm leads.

A Small Business Owner in a Production/Manufacturing/Engineering Environment may:

  • Ensure that equipment and machinery are adequately maintained and promptly repaired by assigned workers.
  • Evaluate production rates daily to diagnose problems and possible solutions to any deviations reflected in the production metrics.
  • Monitor production quotas, and quality standards.
  • Enforce safety and health policies and procedures.

A Small Business Owner in Digital Advertising may:

  • Manage web portal e-Commerce business specializing automotive resale for large brand names.
  • Act as liaison between distributor and customer.
  • Responsible for strategic planning, operations, merchandising, and marketing for the online community.
  • Drive customer relations, brand positioning, revenue growth, financial management, driving operational excellence, business development, price negotiations.

A Small Business Owner in Insurance may:

  • Create customized insurance plans by calculating and quoting rates for immediate coverage action as well as and long-term coverage.
  • Obtains underwriting approval by managing the application process between client and insurer.
  • Provide administrative services inclusive of direct deposit forms and processing amendments in beneficiary and policy loan applications.


Under your experience section, you may be tempted to copy and paste the list of duties you performed as detailed in your job description. The drawback to doing this, though, is that you won’t stand out from the other applicants with similar experience.

Your goal is to think about what sets you apart, what you are most proud of, or what you accomplished in your previous roles, and communicate these through action-packed statements that are compelling.


Flat, Simple Duty:

  • Responsible for marketing duties

Accomplishment Statement:

  • Established email marketing campaigns that generated an average of 30 leads and 12 new customers a month.

Quantifying Your Small Business Owner Resume

When writing your resume, if you can answer the questions, “How much?” or “How many?” It would be best if you tried to include those numbers. For instance:

  • If you saved time, how much?
  • If you improved annual sales, provide percentages to showcase the revenue increase.
  • If you improved quality control how did that impact on factory downtime?

Example 1
Negotiated new service level agreements with suppliers, resulting in an `18% reduction in material expenditure and a saving of $200k per year.

Example 2
Saved $500k per quarter by decreasing overheads by 19% due to better utilization of resources.

Example 3
Reduced Workers’ Compensation costs by 35% per annum with the implementation of employee wellness programmes and safety training initiatives.


The education section forms an integral part of your resume.

In short, indicate What, Where, and When regarding your qualifications, certifications, or industry licenses obtained.

The name of your qualification, institution, and date of completion is more than sufficient.

education symbolic image of books

Remember to include current qualifications you are in the process of completing. Regarding courses and certifications, discretion and relevance must be considered.

Completed Secondary and Tertiary Education must be listed as follows:

Start with the commencement date and completion date for diplomas, associate degrees, and bachelor degrees.

For courses, you can just list the date of completion. Next comes the full name of the qualification, then the full name of the institution and then the City or abbreviated State name.

Here are some examples of a Small Business Owner Resume for someone with more than five years’ experience:

2013 – Financial Management for Non-Financial Managers Training, Boston City College, MA

2012 – Diploma in Project Management, New York Business Academy, New York, NY

2010 – Advanced Certificate in Entrepreneurship, MIT, Online

2006-2008 Masters in Business Administration, Chicago State University, IL

2002-2005 Bachelor of Communication Science, University of Arizona, AR

Small Business Owner Skills

Although the management field requires specific technical skills, employers also look for other skills, called soft skills. These are the main types of skills that indicate to your fit as a Small Business Owner who will add value, has adequate knowledge, sufficient experience and who will motivate and inspire teams. Incorporate these into your summary, or profile, and into your accomplishment statements.

Technical Skills Examples

  • Educational Attainment
    A university degree is not generally required to become a Small Business Owner. In highly technical industries like Finance or IT, top suggested degrees are Business Management, Information Technology, Financial Management, and Marketing and a Master’s in Business Administration.
  • Technical Aptitude
    Small Business Owners need to be strategically orientated to create operational plans, new business development strategies and establish new client markets, On the other hand, a Small Business Owner must be hands-on in driving daily production activities of staff by implementing automated tracking software. They also need to be financially savvy to compile budgets.
  • Managerial Ability
    Small Business Owners are constantly challenged the ups and downs of employee performance cycles. Therefore, strong leadership skills are a must to motivate or critique the consultant’s performance in a constructive manner.
  • Other Technical Skills
    Budgets, Strategic Marketing, Research, Analytics, Social Media, Cloud-Based Collaboration Platforms, CRM Systems, Quality Control, Report Writing, Feedback Mechanisms.

Soft Skill Examples

  • Leadership
  • Attention to Detail
  • Integrity
  • Initiative
  • Empathy.
  • Self-Control
  • Collaboration
  • Persuasion
  • Persistence
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Service Orientation
  • Strategic Thinking
  • Creative
  • Dedicated
  • Realistic

Qualifications/Certifications associated with Small Business Owners

Bachelor or CommunicationMasters in Business AdministrationDiploma in Business Management
Financial Management CertificateAdvanced MS ExcelSAP Super User
Project Management DiplomaLabor Relations CertificateAssociate Degree in Marketing Management

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Action Verbs for your Small Business Owner Resume

ControllingProblem SolvingImproving

Industries Using Small Business Owners:

  • Construction
  • Mining
  • Oil, Gas & Exploration
  • Medical Device
  • Life Sciences
  • Food Manufacturing
  • Consumer Goods
  • Aviation
  • Aerospace
  • Shipping
  • Metals & Steel Production
  • Plastics
  • Packaging & Distribution
  • Agriculture
  • Electronic Components
  • Power Plants
  • Specialty Chemicals
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Information Technology
  • Courier Services
  • Transportation
  • Advertising Agencies
  • Training Consultants
  • Accounting and Taxation
  • Legal

Professional information for Small Business Owners

Sectors: Various
Career Type: Operations, Business Management, Team Dynamics
Person type: Leader, Motivator, Coach, Trainer
Education levels: Post School Diploma to Masters’ Degree
Salary indication: Varied From $34k to $200k
Labor market: An estimated average of 3.6% growth between 2016 and 2026
Organizations: Small, Medium, below $35 million turnovers for government-related small business, below $7 million turnovers for private companies