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The Blog

Is your Business Plan a Shelf Warmer or a Game Changer ?

Posted 13th December 2013

You may have heard it said that Business Plans are a waste of time.  You spend days putting it together, weeks getting it agreed, and it ends up gathering dust on a shelf somewhere - eventually seeing the light of day only when the bank asks you for one to back up a loan application, 5 years afterw...

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The Carrot or the Stick ?

Posted 17th June 2013

There are three key elements to high performance within a work team.  The Direction they are shown, the Skills they possess, and the Motivation they have in their work. Direction and Skills are typically rational, black-and-white issues ... they're either there or they're not, and if they're not y...

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The Law of 10x10

Posted 10th June 2013

Multitasking is a skill that just over 50% of the population will have it that they've mastered, while the other half of the population simply cannot do.  I don't want to get into the gender argument, but one thing I do know for certain is that a business which does not multi-task is never going to...

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Doubling your Sales

Posted 3rd June 2013

While at a conference a couple of years ago, I heard of a study which was carried out on sales professionals in a corporation in the US.  What it looked at was how long each day the sales people in the study actually spent doing the three things which get sales results - that is to say prospecting ...

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Work on the Headline

Posted 20th May 2013

Pick up your local newspaper, or classified directory and flick through the ads.  What do you see ?  Chances are, after just a couple of pages, you will see ... frankly ... nothing.  A few logos, a lot of company names, a clipart picture or two, but nothing remarkable which makes you stop and wan...

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Smile !

Posted 7th May 2013

One of my favourite phrases is “Life is a Mirror” ... what that means is that all that surrounds you and affects you is actually simply a reflection of you. This is truer in the life of a business owner or business leader that just about anywhere else.  We all need to accept that our teams of ...

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Thinking on Paper

Posted 29th April 2013

From time to time, most people experience overwhelm ... when there is simply too much going on in their lives and in their heads and they cannot see the wood for the trees.  They’re waking in the middle of the night with head buzzing, and are unable to drop back off.  They’re busy all the time...

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Measure your Conversion Rate

Posted 22nd April 2013

How well do you convert your new enquiries ?  How many people walking into your shop, visiting your website, phoning you or emailing you are you turning into customers ? Generally I find that less than 10% of small businesses know the answer to that question.  And if they guess, they tend to get ...

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Independents or Nationals ? The Service Debate...

Posted 16th April 2013

Now let's be absolutely honest here.  Look back over the past 12 months and think about the times when you have been dealt with bad service .. however you would define 'bad' or 'service'. Now, how many of those incidents happened with one of the evil, money-grabbing, all-pervading national busines...

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...But I Don't Have Time to Read a Book ...

Posted 15th April 2013

One of the most important lessons I've learnt in business is that you will only perform to the level of your knowledge.  We each have reached the level we have because of what we know.  To reach a higher level, we need to know some more, and that means Learning. The Business Book publishing indus...

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Is the Customer Really always Right ?

Posted 8th April 2013

In short, the answer is Yes, but only if they're the right customer for you. The fact is that as a business owner, you know how you can best give your customers outstanding service.  You see, meet, deal with and understand a wide range of customers for your product or service, and your business ha...

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Know your Margins

Posted 6th March 2013

It seems an obvious thing to say... indeed it is an obvious thing to say.  As a business owner, if you don't know your margins, then how can you be sure you're making money ?  So - do you know them ? Sadly, more than half the business owners I meet don't.  Some can tell me what their previous ye...

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Clearing your Inbox...

Posted 6th March 2013

Firstly, let me get this clear ... I am not a psychologist, and have had no medical training.  What you are about to read is an observation, not the result of clinical investigation.... Stress in the workplace has many possible sources - it may arise from interpersonal relationships, insufficient ...

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Finding your Ideal Customer...

Posted 6th March 2013

An exercise we commonly go through with our clients is to rank their customers A, B, C & D.  You know the sort of thing ... A's are the Awesome customers, B's are the Bread & Butter Customers, C's the ones you Can't really deal with, and the D's the ones you sometimes wish were Dead ! Ther...

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