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Running your business

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Have you got the information you need to succeed?

Ever heard the saying, If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it? I used to hear it a lot back in my corporate days. There used to be “Management Information” everywhere, with whole departments just to produce the stuff. Which is great, as long as it’s used effectively. How about you? Did you think when you started your business that you would need to create an MI team at some point? I bet not. In fact, it can be quite liberating in the beginning to not have reports in place, …

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Is conflict is an inevitable consequence of business

With so many factors and variables in the mix, from internal and 3rd party dependencies, to technology and the pressure of client deadlines and paying the bills, conflict will always rear its ugly head from time to time. But, do you ever find yourself experiencing the same kind of draining disagreements or bad feeling? Because if your life sometimes feels like you’re stuck in ‘ground hog day’, then I’m going to share one of the best pieces of psychology I’ve ever found, that can help you. It’s so simple and …

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Growing your business is a lot like training!

Do you swing between feeling good and challenged in your business? Here’s how to keep them both in balance. Lift.  Relax.  Lift.  Relax. If you spend any time in a gym, you’ll have seen how weightlifters train. It’s a gradual, conscious process of slowly building up strength through challenge and release. It’s that combination that allows the muscle to regenerate and grow stronger. However, if you over-challenge that muscle before it’s ready, it gives up. If you attempt an Olympic weight when you’ve just lifted your first 20kg, you’ll risk long-term …

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Packing a bigger punch: A checklist for collaborating successfully with another business

If the last recession did one good thing, it was to prompt many small business collaborations. These businesses joined forces to create more substantial and attractive offerings to rival the bigger players. Collaboration with another business certainly brings many great benefits to a small company. These include accessing a bigger customer pot and pooling resources to secure greater buying power for marketing elements such as advertising. It also enables small businesses to combine forces to create broader and more attractive product or service packages, offers or promotions. These help them …

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Take yourself out of your business for one day!

You may often hear people like me (aka Business Coaches and the like) banging on about the need to spend more time working ON your business and less time working in it. But just what does that mean? What exactly should you be doing in that time working ON your business? Firstly, it definitely doesn’t meaning spending an hour or so on social media, reading newsfeeds, sharing funny quotes and re-tweeting other people’s content. As a general rule of thumb, working ON your business is about working on longer term …

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The one tool that you need in your business to be productive

I work a lot with business owners to help them become more productive in their business, and a question I’m often asked is, ‘What techniques can you recommend to help me manage my time better?’ People are often surprised at my answer. It’s not Pomodoro or GTD or any of the latest apps and trends. In fact, I’ve seen lots of people using so-called ‘time management techniques’ as a form of procrastination, and spending more time ‘managing’ their time, than actually getting anything done! My favourite way of managing time more …

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Top 5 ways to protect your confidential information and IP

So you’ve spent months or years developing your product or business idea, you’ve launched it and you’re thinking about taking on your first few members of staff. What most small business owners don’t spend a lot of time thinking about is how to protect their confidential information and intellectual property – yet these things might be your business’ most important assets. Confidential information could be technical (for example a secret recipe) or commercial (a list of clients or pricing structure). Intellectual property (IP) is something unique that you physically create. …

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Have you felt the pain of a business partnership gone wrong?

This weeks burning question! “I’m starting a business with a good friend. Do you think we should get some kind of formal agreement set up? We’ve known each other for a long time and used to work together a few years ago. I trust her completely, so I’m thinking I might just see how things go. What do you think, should we bother with a partnership agreement?” There’s a very short answer to this question; YES! Consider this. Do you want to build your new business on strong sturdy foundations …

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How small businesses are taking on the ‘big’ guys!

Is it really possible for a small business to operate with the same efficiency as a Fortune 500 corporation? Many proponents of big business claim that keeping up is a numbers game: if a business doesn’t have the money to rank among the top in their industry, there will be a noticeable lack of efficiency in their operations and processes. However, recent technological trends and advancements have been shown to bridge the gap between the ‘big business picture’ of global co-operation and the small business struggle to keep up. The importance of …

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How to stop making these top 5 mistakes with your pricing

When working with a new client who wants to start making more money in their business, without putting in more hours, one of the first areas I’ll be prying into is their pricing strategy. And time and time again I see the same 5 mistakes cropping up, holding their business back from becoming more profitable. But the brilliant news is that these mistakes are so easy to sort out, and are certainly faster and easier to fix, than trying to go and find lots of new customers for your business. …

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