Life Cycle - Mature

Tips, advice and solutions for business owners wanting to grow or improve their business

10 Ways to Drive extra Business Cashflow

10 Ways to Drive extra Business Cashflow

Cash is critically important for business, with many businesses finding that periods after holidays or short trading months can be extra tough on the cashf front.

Staff leave payments, a short close down, penalty rates for public holidays, slow debtor collections or even extra stock holdings, will all have drained cash from your business.

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( Posted in: Cash Management )

Business Risk during the Festive Season

Business Risk during the Festive Season
As we take the run into Christmas, most business are focused on getting things finished so they can wind down for a bit of R ’n‘ R over the Christmas & New Year period. Naturally, those in Retail are still geared up until after the post Christmas sales and Hospitality, will run hard until the holidays finish, but….there is another group who are gearing up for a busy holiday season.
 
This group, would officially be on the “naughty list”, as this group have only one objective - to rob you.
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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

The 5 life-cycle stages of a business

The 5 life-cycle stages of a business

Businesses are not static beasts, they change and evolve over time - and as they do, their needs vary. By understanding the different life-cycle phases of a business, owners have the ability to position themselves differently and focus on different facets which will drive enhanced returns.

Broadly, there are 5 distinct life-cycle stages...

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( Posted in: Business Management )

Compelling Copy Which Sells

Compelling Copy Which Sells

If someone said to you, “you’re going to want that Kidney..” - would you pay attention? I did. How about if someone said, “if left alone, it will continue to devour the cells around it” - do you think you would listen to what they said next? It got me.

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

Business Sale Values

Business Sale Values

Increasingly with the transition of the Baby Boomers into retirement, more and more business owners are considering the sale of their business. This is a very important event, as it allows them to unlock the investment which they have built up in their business over time and assists with funding their retirement. The key question is generally – “how much is it worth?”....

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

The benefit of Honest and Timely Performance Appraisals

The benefit of Honest and Timely Performance Appraisals
Staff can be the greatest asset in your business, but for any service based business - they typically will be the greatest expense - whether they are an asset or not.
 
Perhaps its my corporate background, or my genuine desire to improve things (people and businesses), or it might just be my objective to see a larger number at the bottom line - but regardless.....
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( Posted in: Communication )

Critical Components of a Good Job Description

Critical Components of a Good Job Description
Job descriptions are a valuable tool for both staff and employers and unfortunately, they tend to be absent in many businesses.
 
For the staff member, a good job description provides ....
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( Posted in: Business Management )

Sale of Business Value Ė every business is saleable

Sale of Business Value Ė every business is saleable

Essentially every business is saleable; it’s simply the sale value and terms which vary. The issue faced by many business owners is that the sale value/terms available, are significantly lower than they had hoped for.

So if you are seeking a sale exit from your business - you really have the following options available....

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

Business Sales Activity in your Prospect Pipeline

Business Sales Activity in your Prospect Pipeline

Businesses with strong consistent sales, typically are the same ones who have a deep prospect pipeline. Regardless of the type of business or product, those who have the depth of opportunity in their sales pipeline, are also the ones who have less stress and typically better margins.

When you only have one or two prospects in your sales pipeline..... 

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

Business Efficiency in Small Business

Business Efficiency in Small Business
Improvement in efficiency has been an age old quest in business, as it has enabled either more to be achieved with less effort, or for the same amount of effort, but faster.
 
For many reading this article, the phone or tablet you are using provides you with a more effective use of your time......
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( Posted in: Business Performance )

Cash relief for stressed business owners

Cash relief for stressed business owners
Cash is one of the top few stress triggers for business. Not having enough, not knowing where it will come from, or simply..... a puzzle around the best way to use it. In a physical situation - cash is pretty well understood, but when it hits the virtual, electronic or theoretical - I find that eyes start to glaze...
 
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( Posted in: Cash Management )

Business Data - ďis it a valuable asset or an expensive handicap?"

Business Data - ďis it a valuable asset or an expensive handicap?"
It's well recognised in many corporate environments that data quality is a large and expensive issue. 
 
For banks & insurance companies with risk data, retailers with stock, marketers with poor lists, and countless others who rely on accurate financial info - poor data quality is an issue as it breeds inefficiency, increases expense and robs capital. 
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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

Business Improvement for the year ahead

Business Improvement for the year ahead

Christmas Day has been and gone and New Years is settling in, but when you sit back in the comfy chair – wherever that may be, on the beach, by the water, camping or even just at home……now is the time to take a quick “stock take” of the year that has past.

For those in business, often there is little respite as you....... 

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( Posted in: Business Management )

Who is your business communication written for?

Who is your business communication written for?

Have you ever read a business note, perhaps an email or a letter and thought – huh, what’s that about.....as the tone or content of the note is as if its been written for someone else? Well perhaps it has!

In business I have found that the principle of writing for a “third party” audience, is actually not that uncommon. 

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( Posted in: Communication )

5 Steps for better Business Financing

5 Steps for better Business Financing

With countless business finance products in the market – is can be daunting for some businesses to decide which option to choose. The frequently asked question is “which one should I take?”, so to take some of the pain out of this point – we have provided 5 simple steps for better Business Financing.

To start, it's not so much a case of which product you should take, it's more a question of which one do you need and realistically, what is available.

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( Posted in: Banking )

The value of continual education in business

The value of continual education in business

At some point - and we have all done it, we get to a point of knowledge within our business or industry were we feel……. comfortable. It is at this very point; you can guarantee that you have just fallen BEHIND the game.

Business is ALWAYS evolving....

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

Why you should consider more than just the Easy Option

Why you should consider more than just the Easy Option

In a world where speed appears to be everything, often the compromise that is made is to take the generic or easy option. This has become so common in business, that the generic option is often the only option put forward – whereas there is generally many ways to skin a cat.

Now whilst I have no issue with a simple, cheap option when you can get it – the critical point is ensuring that it is the right option.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

Is Business Change possible?

Is Business Change possible?

Is business change possible - absolutely unequivocally yes…but it takes action. A great man once said, “If you always do what you've always done, then you will always get what you've always got” (Henry Ford) – so…..if you don’t like the outcome you’re getting at the moment…..then you have to change something!

It’s at this point that that the problems normally start.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

Making Sound Business Decisions

Making Sound Business Decisions

In all businesses, small or large, actions are often taken in the moment – reacting to a symptom rather than making a fully informed decision based on the cause.

Symptom management is a very frequent occurrence, with the management decisions based at a superficial level to arrest what is the perceived cause - which in the bulk of cases is not the true underlying driver.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

What information should I use to run my business?

What information should I use to run my business?

It’s that moment where you are sitting amongst a pile of information – numbers, graphs, returns, production numbers, stock levels, customer surveys…….all with seemingly important information……but what does it all mean......what information should I use to run my business?

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( Posted in: Business Management )

What if I didnít read the business contract?

What if I didnít read the business contract?

Have you ever heard, “…what if I didn’t read the business contract before I signed it?” Unfortunately I have, with my default response being, “the devil is always in the detail”. So if you have not read your document, then the chances are that the “detail devil” will cause you trouble.

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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

Succeed with Business Succession

Succeed with Business Succession

Succession is an inevitable bridge that needs to be crossed for all businesses. For some, the decision is made in a millisecond – whereas for others, it can be an all-consuming dilemma. This article is to help those struggling with this dilemma.

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

Clear Business Process + Strong Execution = Great Savings

Clear Business Process + Strong Execution = Great Savings

Regardless of whether you are selling burgers to a young family with three tired kids or producing “O” rings for the space program – there is always a cost when your process fails – it’s just the magnitude that varies.

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

Business - when Good Times go BAD

Business - when Good Times go BAD

How much risk are you carrying in your business - do you know......and what are you doing about it?

Someone once explained Operational Risk to me as the classic, 'good times gone bad' situation, where one or more of the things that have made the business successful, suddenly go wrong - and often....very wrong!

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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

The One More Thing for business success

The One More Thing for business success

Whether it be in sport or business, the difference between success and failure can often be simply doing one more thing than the competition. The extra phone call, one more prototype, another sales approach, an additional quality check, a larger focus group, an extra tier of service etc etc.....any of these can be the secret ingredient to business success.

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

10 Commandments of Business

10 Commandments of Business

Many business owners are time poor and simply don't find the time to read the more comprehensive articles. So if you are looking for a bunch of potent tips for your business - then this short article is for you. 

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( Posted in: Business Management )

New Years Resolution for Business

New Years Resolution for Business

The start of the new year is traditionally when we pledge resolutions for the New Year ahead - resolutions around how we are going to do things differently...do things better and often…..change a bad habit from last year.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

12 Costly Risks for Business

12 Costly Risks for Business

The majority of risks in business can be predicted and quantified as part of an assessment of the business and how/where it operates. For most businesses however, stopping to undertake this type of assessment is rare - let alone implementing mitigation plans. 

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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

What do I need to prepare my business for sale?

What do I need to prepare my business for sale?

Business Sale Building Blocks - The prospect of selling a business, or at least positioning it so it can be sold, will be confronted by all business owners eventually. It may be for 20 years down the track (rare) or to sell now (more common), but the simple reality is that all businesses will have a change of ownership at some point.

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

The Cost of being Tolerant

The Cost of being Tolerant

Business owners tolerate a lot, whether it is poor performing staff, process problems, cash flow, IT and the like. In doing this, the level of stress or pressure on the owner (and in many cases - the business) rises in direct proportion.

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( Posted in: Business Performance )

10 Mistakes to avoid when Selling your Business

10 Mistakes to avoid when Selling your Business

Some would say that the hard work has been done, but you can't take your eye off the game at this crucial time - as it could blow up in your face and cost you a lot.

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

Fail to have a Business Plan is Planning to Fail in Business

Fail to have a Business Plan is Planning to Fail in Business

"Fail to plan is planning to fail" - Winston Churchill.

Even though this well used line receives universal acceptance in conversation....... few businesses "walk the talk".

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( Posted in: Business Management )

Sure Fire Business Killers

Sure Fire Business Killers

Operating a business has its challenges due to the many and varied issues drawing on the owners time – people, product, sales, collections, just to name a few. Thus it’s no wonder that many business owners operate “in” rather than “on” their business – which has its dangers.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

My Business is Up for Sale!

My Business is Up for Sale!

The sale of a business is typically an emotive situation for the business owner…… and in the majority of cases, something that they are very unfamiliar with. So if you are thinking of selling your business, then consider the following 6 ingredients for a good business sale experience.

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( Posted in: Sale/Succession )

Business Finance - On the Hook!

Business Finance - On the Hook!

For those who have borrowed money, you would be aware that financiers are always looking for a primary exit (repayment) source – normally via the repayment from business operations AS WELL AS a secondary exit just in case everything turns sour. 

Most people get the simple fact that if they default on the loan, the financier will look to seize the security to get their money back, but…. there is a lot more to learn about this.

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( Posted in: Banking )

It's never the Message in business - always the delivery!

It's never the Message in business - always the delivery!

How many times have you been given some news and reacted badly; triggering a sudden or violent reaction, not gaining an understanding or getting the full message?

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( Posted in: Communication )

But I didnít see it coming!

But I didnít see it coming!

All too often this is the catch cry after a major incident.....a show stopping incident.....a business crippling incident…

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( Posted in: Risk Mitigation )

The Factor of Time

The Factor of Time

Time is a precious commodity and one not to be squandered. Often time.....is the critical factor between success and failure.

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( Posted in: Business Management )

The Business Debt Trap

The Business Debt Trap

Debt comes in two forms - Good and Bad. Successful businesses understand the difference and actively manage their position.

Over the years I have seen many businesses struggle (and some crumble) under the burden of debt - with the debt load literally hanging over the business like a tree branch waiting to fall in a strong wind. Using a simple test before taking on debt will assist you in avoiding this risk.

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( Posted in: Banking )

Business Decisions - play them forward three hands

Business Decisions - play them forward three hands

Many strategies and decisions are made "in the moment" - considering only todays issues with little thought given to the flow on effects or impacts.

Consider for a moment what this could look like in a practical business context;

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( Posted in: Business Management )

5 Avoidable Banking Mistakes for Business

5 Avoidable Banking Mistakes for Business

As with most things in life - learn the lessons of those who have gone before you.

Over my years working with businesses and lending money, I have seen a number of simple mistakes that have cost people a lot of money. To save you the cost of these, I have jotted down 5 of the most common mistakes that I have seen, along with simple yet effective suggestions to avoid them.

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( Posted in: Banking )