How to turn your hobby into a business

Thinking about turning your passion into a paying gig? These steps will help you avoid some common mistakes as you set out to earn an income from your favourite pastime. Do you have what it takes? Unless you’ve run a business before, it’s easy to get carried away with the idea of how perfect it will be to get paid for doing what you love. Reality check: the stress of…  Read more

So you’ve launched your business – now what?

Good news for small business owners: according to the US Small Business Administration, nearly 80% of small businesses survive their first year. However, that number begins to drop as time rolls on. Only half of Small Businesses pass the five-year mark, and a mere third celebrate their tenth anniversary. Taking steps to create a good foundation in the early days of your business is essential for a sustainable and profitable…  Read more

How to license your business ideas

Looking for a cost-effective means to create another income stream? Consider this: ambitious companies are always on the lookout for the next lucrative business idea. Licensing your intellectual property to another company can be a win-win when both parties see eye to see, and result in a worthwhile payout for all concerned. Wondering how to get started licensing your bright business ideas? Read on. Intellectual property 101 If you’re running…  Read more

How to create an advisory board for your business

Many remarkable entrepreneurs, including Warren Buffet, Sheryl Sandberg, and Richard Branson, have credited their success, in part, to the advice of their mentors. An advisory board is an informal group of mentors whose collective business expertise—and objectivity—can help you make better, more informed decisions, thereby accelerating growth. Unlike business consultants (whose fees may well exceed your budget), advisory board members may agree to provide advice pro bono, for a small…  Read more

Do you share this habit with the world’s most successful business leaders?

What do Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Mark Cuban, and Arianna Huffington have in common? All of these smart, savvy, successful business leaders share a passion for self-improvement through reading. If you want to improve your skills as a business owner, why not spend a bit of time each day reading books that guide you to greater success? This reading list of 4 inspiring business books will help you get started:…  Read more

5 Common Bookkeeping Pitfalls — and How to Avoid Them

Although most entrepreneurs recognize the importance of careful financial management, few want to spend their time dealing with numbers. Unfortunately, not keeping a close eye on your income and expenses can be very costly for a business. Here are five of the most common bookkeeping pitfalls, and some simple tips for getting back on track. Mixing business and personal All too often, entrepreneurs adopt a “buy now, sort later” approach…  Read more

What you need to know about FBT 2018

The Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) year ends on 31 March. We’ve outlined the key hot spots for employers and employees. Motor vehicles – using the company car outside of work New safe harbour for utes and commercial vehicles Car parking – are you really declaring the true cost of parking? The living away from home allowance – the common errors Salary sacrifice or employee contribution – where employers are getting…  Read more

New payment methods to consider in 2018

A new year is a perfect time for business owners to set goals to improve profitability. If you aren’t yet familiar with digital wallets and the latest mobile payment technologies, you might be interested in the benefits they afford small businesses, such as: instant access to funds and real-time financial data cost savings on third-party transaction fees and POS systems competitive edge—making it easy for customers to pay quickly and…  Read more

Encouraging word of mouth

If you have any doubt that word of mouth referrals are important, consider these recent stats: According to Neilson, 92% of shoppers trust recommendations from friends and family more than traditional advertising 20% to 50% of consumer purchases are made because of a word of mouth recommendation 81% of buyers are influenced by their friends’ social media posts. So how can you encourage positive word of mouth for your small…  Read more

8 Common Problems New Freelancers Face

Freelancers in all industries deal with the same problems due to the nature of their work.  Typically, freelancers are solo work-from-home contractors that manage every aspect of their business.  If you’re thinking of dropping your career as an employee to begin freelancing, consider the following obstacles you will need to navigate.  Unfortunately, problems beget more problems, and a shaky foundation quickly leads to a crumbly business and many regrets about…  Read more

Main Causes of Stress for Business Owners & How to Counter Them

Many entrepreneurs believe that hard work and dogged determination are all it takes to build and sustain a successful business. But when you consider the pressures of running a company, it seems wise to add effective stress-management to the list. Left unchecked, stress can erode your passion and undermine performance – not to mention, take a serious toll on your health. Research compiled by Office Vibe reveals that over 70%…  Read more

Is business insurance worthwhile?

If you’re like many small business owners, your business may not be adequately insured in the case of a fire, flood, natural disaster, theft, or personal injury. Often home-based business owners assume they are covered under their homeowner’s policy. Other entrepreneurs, working long hours and pulled in too many directions, may never get around to talking to an insurance agent about their business. If you’ve been procrastinating on business insurance,…  Read more

What is your succession plan?

According to recent research, a staggering two-thirds of US millionaire-owned businesses are operating without a succession plan—and even fewer small business owners around the globe are prepared for their CEO’s eventual exit. Recent stats from PWC Global show that family-owned businesses are no more prepared: 43% don’t have a succession plan in place, and only 12% survive to the third generation. No matter whether your company has one employee, a…  Read more

Protect Business Reputation by Planning for Big Sales

A business plan is essential for business development. But even with a solid plan, there is some aspect of unpredictability. There is a multitude of variables that have to be taken into account, any of which could have a great impact on the prosperity of a small business. Sales forecasting may well be the most difficult and complicated of all areas covered in a strategic business plan. To predict sales,…  Read more

Update your business plan for a new year

As another year winds down, it’s a good time to reflect on your recent business successes – and consider what you’d like to achieve in the coming twelve to fifteen months. These tips can help you with the process of making plans to help guide your business to greater success. Set priorities Entrepreneurs are typically highly creative and optimistic; as a result, they often have difficulty narrowing down their ideas…  Read more

Collaboration: 5 Reasons It’s Essential to a Growing Company

Many elements are vital to a growing company’s success. A financially-astute leader is one. A confident and motivated sales team well-versed in a company’s product and service line is another. But starting and growing a business requires more than employees with extensive functional skills and appropriate personal characteristics. Growing a business requires collaboration – namely, the deployment of employees in a way that allows them to work together to problem-solve and act…  Read more

Paying down debt

Debt can be a crippling problem for small businesses wanting to grow or just break-even during difficult times. By reducing debt you’ll improve the value of your business, its financial situation, and its ability to continue operating into the future. Assess your debt situation Take a detailed look at all of your debts – both current and long-term. Evaluate which ones are more urgent and which can be parked until…  Read more

Is it better to buy or lease a company vehicle?

If you need a car to operate your business, you may wonder whether it makes more sense to purchase or lease. On the one hand, if your business owns the car you’ll have a long-term asset and may qualify for more tax deductions. On the other hand, buying a car is a huge expense and monthly lease payments tend to be lower than car loan payments; they may also be…  Read more

Identify your break-even point

Without knowing your break-even point, you can’t make informed business decisions. To cover the costs of your business you need to sell enough goods or services to reach your break-even point. Knowing where that point is, and how long it will take you to reach it, can be fundamental to your success. This especially true if you’re thinking about starting or buying a business. Calculate fixed and variable costs The…  Read more

Strengthening your balance sheet

Your balance sheet (now more correctly called a Statement of Financial Position) reveals a great deal about your business, including the total value of your assets – the things you own; how much you owe to others – your liabilities; and the level of your solvency. These three aspects will be studied carefully by lenders and investors − and by buyers if you intend to sell your business. But they…  Read more

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