Planning

8 Sales Tests for your Website

sales tests for your website

As we approach Christmas, it’s a good time to reflect on the business and plan for 2014. Ideas that have been suppressed whilst doing the day to day work come to the fore. It may involve getting new business, changing direction, developing new services.

Generally its a worthwhile time to review the website to make sure it still targets the right audience and clearly defines the services or products you… Continue reading →

The 4 Numbers You Need To Manage Your Business

numbers you need
The numbers you need to run your business are as critical as the dashboard you use when driving your car.

Odometer, speedometer, rear view mirror, warning lights, fuel gauge and estimate of fuel remaining are the measurements in your car equivalent to the numbers you need in your business. Let’s explore these.

1. Cash Forecast

For small businesses, managing cash is crucial. It’s the equivalent of the fuel gauge. It… Continue reading →

7 Key Elements of Successful Projects in Small Businesses

successful projects

Successful projects are as much about planning and structure as they are about delivery. Larger organisations will look to Prince 2 as the basis for the project.

However it is far too unwieldy for smaller businesses. Yet if you strip Prince 2 back to the basics there is a framework that would be flexible enough for a simple project. My Mentored Graduate Programme incorporates all the elements despite there… Continue reading →

5 Project Failures and What I’ve Learnt

project failuresSo many projects set up with good intentions end up not delivering the full benefits. Mine included. I’ve had a host of project failures to my name.

I figure it’s fine to make a mistake, but I should learn from it. Which is why I thought it worth sharing 5 project failures I’ve made and what I’ve learnt from those mistakes.

1. Wrong scope

I’d been at a client for… Continue reading →

Running a Business is like Riding a Bike

Running a Business is like Riding a Bike

I recently went on a “Stop Crashing for Beginners” Mountain Biking course. I’d been out with a group of friends and had to get off and push when others rode on through. Strength and stamina didn’t help here. I lacked the skill.

The course was run by Ed Oxley who taught me how to position myself when descending a steep slope. Importantly this meant I wasn’t about to be propelled… Continue reading →

5 Ways To Identify Defensive Employees

defensive employees
During tough times like these, it’s understandable that you’ll batten down the hatches.

Word will get out about overhead savings. Does this mean your employees are more likely to dig their heels in? To strengthen their position in the company?

You want the opposite. To see more flexibility in your staff not less.

Defensive employees can stifle the growth you’re trying to achieve

Here are 5 ways in which defensive… Continue reading →

10 Golden Dilemmas in Business

dilemmas in business

How do you keep employees, shareholders, customers, suppliers and the local community all happy at the same time in a business?

Its a juggling act that all business owners will be well aware of.

Drawing inspiration from Riding the Waves of Culture by Fons Trompenaars, I’ve compiled the 10 Golden Dilemmas in Business

1. Rewards

Either motivate employees and reward staff.

Or satisfy shareholders with profit.

2. Skills… Continue reading →

How to Identify the One Key Thing your Business Stands For

your business stands for
What is the main purpose for you being in business? Is it clear or do you have to think hard?

How about taking away all the unnecessary “stuff” you do and stripping the business back to the bare minimum?

What is it your business stands for?

I recently read a short book by Simon Hartley called Two lengths of the pool. He regularly holds “Parkinson” style events with Olympic… Continue reading →

How Unwanted Baggage Dragged my Company into Receivership

company into receivership
Have you been through the pain of putting a company into receivership? It leaves an indelible mark on employees, shareholders, suppliers, customers not to mention the indirect effect on families and the local community.

Five months I worked for Praxis Tailoring in 2000 before recommending, as Finance Director, we call in the receivers. Six months before my first child, was due.

Why join at all?

Well there was a fresh… Continue reading →

Every Batman Needs a Good Robin

every batman needs a good robin

It’s lonely being the business owner. Everyone looks to you for all the answers. You need to be some kind of superhero to keep everyone happy.

But even superheros had help. Maybe the help you need is a young Robin?

Attract talent

If you create a sense of aura around the workplace, you’ll attract young & enthusiastic people who want to work for you.

Out of this pool of talent… Continue reading →