|Small Business Information|
What are the COSTS Associated with joining Leads Groups?
When it comes to cost, how much can you afford or not afford?
When it comes to cost, the first thing that comes to mind is money, the cost of membership. Although this may be a consideration, you should also look at the cost as part of the investment you need to make in order to improve the bottom-line. It is the return on investment that needs to be considered with any group. Leads groups can cost anywhere from the cost of a meal and an extra $20, to a few thousand dollars per year. In addition to the financial considerations is the cost of time that you must commit to the group. A weekly 2 hours meeting in the early hours will not likely have much affect on the time you need to generate your own leads for business. However, if you are committed to attending weekly meetings for lunch or dinner, your client base may suffer if attendance is required and there is a conflict between the meeting and the client requirements.
There is also the aspect of commitment to any group. The cost of commitment can be low if they require fewer meetings and at the appropriate times. You must weigh all of these factors before you make your final decision on joining the group. Before you make the commitment, review the time it will take to work the group, and also the returns you will get from membership. It is best to know these factors in advance.
When looking at costs, you need to make sure that you have enough details on the group to properly analyze what it is you are getting into. Many groups have guest speakers on topics that are relevant to business that will add to the value. Make sure that you have enough details before lunging forward. Also know how people are removed from a group. It is one thing to be a member and it is another to be asked to leave. You need to be definitive about your own personal focus.
Bette Daoust, Ph.D. has been networking with others since leaving high school years ago. Realizing that no one really cared about what she did in life unless she had someone to tell and excite. She decided to find the best ways to get people's attention, be creative in how she presented herself and products, getting people to know who she was, and being visible all the time. Her friends and colleagues have often dubbed her the "Networking Queen". Blueprint for Networking Success: 150 ways to promote yourself is the first in this series. Blueprint for Branding Yourself: Another 150 ways to promote yourself is planned for release in 2005. For more information visit http://www.BlueprintBooks.com
Creating a Paperless Office
When working from home, it is usual to find that you have your office in an area that is not very big, such as a box room or even in the corner of the kitchen. When your business really takes off, you will begin to discover that your work area starts to get swamped by paperwork and that you are running out of storage space.
Small Business Success: Thriving During Change (And Landing On Your Feet!)
If I had $1.00 every time I heard someone say " I don't like change or, change makes me uncomfortable" I'd be a millionaire. Some people thrive on change ? they love it and even create more of it. Others view change with anxiety and resistance. So often, we don't associate potential, excitement and wonder with change. Instead, we react to it; we try to control it; we create situations and problems to avoid dealing with it. We experience change daily in many forms ? the clothes we wear, the food we eat, the conversations we have, traffic patterns, the WEATHER.
Who Does Over Disclosure Really Hurt In Franchising?
Costs of over regulation and over disclosure end up hurting the very consumer that the regulatory bodies are trying to protect. Over disclosure and over regulation is in itself the worst evil of civilization, as it stifles free enterprise, innovation and free markets. In franchising the disclosure documents have in fact grown to over 200 plus pages in length on average. You should be happy you are not a tree in the forest right now.
How to Become Successful in the Field of Financial Consultants
Financial Consultants are one of the fastest growing industries today. More and more people are requiring the services of a finance consultant to get out of debt, and/or prepare for educational and retirement expenses. The knowledge these consultants have creates an income potential for everyone involved.
Hone Your Edge, Stay Focused
A common hazard faced by new entrepreneurs is a lack of faith in the power of their offer. Many business people lose focus because they are worried they wont generate enough cash flow from their core product. They attract potential customers with outstanding expertise but then muddy the water by trying to sell anything those customers want, regardless of how it fits into their business plan. This is confusing, both for the customer, who doesnt really know what type of business you have, and for yourself. Heres how to stay on track.
How to Prepare for Your Start-Up Venture!
When you awoke this morning, you found yourself buzzing with a fantastic idea for starting a new business and you hadn't a doubt in your mind that you could turn it into a huge success. But now what? All those great ideas floating around in your head and you're excited about making them happen, but at the moment you don't know where to begin. What is the first thing you should do as you contemplate your plan of action?
Business Pain Defined
Every company has business pain, but the pain does not necessarily mean that they have a success problem. Pain can be anything from a minor dent, as when a marketing event does not produce the anticipated results, to a major process issue, as when reporting is not accurate. As you set out to find your customer's business pain, you should remember that you are not necessarily looking for huge issues, rather you are looking for issues that hurt the profitability of the company.
Franchising and Royalty Payments
If you are thinking of turning your current into a franchising company you will need to determine a fair and equitable franchise royalty fee. There are a number of questions you will need to ask yourself in determining this fee such as what services you will provide to your franchisee team and what that will cost. You will also need to take a look at the competition to determine the amount that you can honestly charge without forgoing cost conscious franchise buyers.
Book Yourself Solid Key #5: Go Forward With Gusto & Articulate What You Do
Want your small business to flip instead of flop?! Statistically half of the entrepreneurs reading this will be out of business in three short years. Establishing a long standing, profitable and successful business absolutely depends on your ability to convey a clear message. A heartfelt message that tells clients exactly what you do, the specific 'invest-able opportunities' you bring to the table and all the ways clients will have a bigger, better, fuller life as a result of working with you.
Job Costing - Do You Know How?
What's your job profitability? I meet with business owners every day that are unsure of their profitability at a company or job level. They "think" they are making money because they have a few dollars in their checking account. Having money in your checking account doesn't mean you are profitable. It might mean you haven't paid all the bills yet, so you have a little cash. Cash and profit are two different concepts. If you aren't profitable, you won't have longevity in your business.
Perfecting Your Pitch
Why should you describe your business to others in 5 to 10 seconds?
Are You a Small Business Casualty?
When a person knows and knows not that he knows. Teach him.
Pressure Washing Market Niche
Those who are in the pressure washer business should not neglect the Hotel exterior cleaning niche. Many five-star hotels spend significant dollars in making sure that their grounds are meticulously cleaned. There are also many regular hotels, which take pride in their hotels. It would be wise to have a customized sales letter and/or brochure made especially for this type of service, with follow-up information on your website.
You Are Invited
Business card size works well for invitations to special events.
Small Business - Is The Accounting Profession Ripping Them Off?
My 16 year-old daughter said, "Gee Dad! You look just like an accountant" And she wasn't being complimentary. Accountants are perceived to be boring, stodgy and conservative. Over the years we've been the butt of many jokes. I've heard them all. Why did the accountant cross the road? Because he looked up the file and that's what they did last year! Ha Ha! What do accountants use as a contraceptive? Their personality! Ha Ha!" Why do accountants become accountants? They don't have the charisma to be undertakers! Ha Ha! What do they call an accountant at the bottom of the sea? A bloody good start! Ha Ha! I think I am the exception. That's why I've begun to call myself a business strategist and counselor. "You're still an accountant," says teenage daughter. I am still an accountant and I'm still as passionate about it as the day I started. Because accountants have an impact on people's lives. The advice we give changes people's businesses which in turn changes their lives. I'm excited in my role of accountant. Accounting is not stodgy. Accounting is exciting. Accounting is cool! My ambition is to become the "cool dude of accounting". (do they still say "dude", do they still say "cool". Remember that song: When I say, "cool, man, cool, I don't mean cool, man, cool, I mean you leave me cold, Jack") We were throwing some ideas around with some of our clients as we do from time to time, looking for that unique benefit that our firm gives to our clients. That unique something that distinguishes us from other accounting practices. One said, "You have helped me to improve my business. Not only am I making more profits and have more to spend, but I also have more time to spend away from the business. The more time I spend at home with my family the happier my life is. And the happier I am the happier my wife and children seem to be. When my wife is happy all sorts of good things happen ? even our sex life improves. That's it! You can advertise that using Kelvyn Peters CPA and Associates improves your sex life" I don't think so! Sorry, we haven't accepted his idea. You're completely on your own in that department, but we can help you improve your business and consequently your life. And your goal might not be extra profit but extra time for living! We know we can because we are doing it for others. We repeat ourselves so often because the truth is the truth and there is only a limited number of ways to tell it. You've heard this before. If you are spending every waking moment in a hassle about your business, there must be a better way. There is! Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years In 1973 I attended a workshop for accountants at the Finance Management Research Center then headed by Dr Keith Cleland. The workshop was intended to drag participants into the 20th century. "Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years", he told us. The 25 participants were shocked. These represented vibrant accounting firms from all around Australia, both large firms and small. They were at the cutting edge of the industry. Otherwise they would not have been at this kind of workshop. To a person they resented that comment and one fellow wanted to punch him on the nose. (It wasn't me, but I would have held his coat). By the week's end we discovered how we were charging high fees for things that our clients couldn't understand, couldn't use and didn't need. At the same time we were neglecting the information that they did need to increase their profits and safeguard their businesses. 20 Years Later what's Changed? I attended a week long seminar hosted by CPA Australia in 1993 which was to train us in "client based accounting". Dr Cleland presented the initial module. He did not openly criticize accountants this time, after all, it was the CPA's hosting it, but he gave almost the same speech (same jokes, too) as he had 20 years before. "These things aren't taught in Universities", he said, "so the accounting profession has mostly ignored them. They have let small business down but things are changing". Know-it-all, Kelvyn Peters had to jump to his feet and say that the doctor had said exactly the same thing 20 years ago. Where were the signs of change? Universities were still not teaching accountants how to help their clients. "This seminar with CPA Australia and the suggestion they might make client based accounting a speciality is a good sign", he replied. 10 Years Later? Nothing has changed. Our hopes have withered on the vine and small business must look elsewhere for help. Recently I was called in to assist an ailing restaurant. We were happy to work with their existing accountant. We'd rather do the fun stuff and let the accountant do the boring tax returns and compliance work. In this case the client insisted we take over the whole of the accounting function. The accountant was most unhappy. "They are difficult clients", he said, "I have kept the fee lower than it should be and I have done extra to help them". Indeed, he had! The financial statements were beautiful to behold with colored graphs and key ratios compared against industry average. (most accountants still don't do that. I had advised that both wages costs and cost of foodstuffs were too high. Our focus was to form tactics to reduce them. "But I had already told them that", said the Accountant, "what do they need you for?' I told him that the client knew the kitchen wages were too high and what he wanted was for someone to show them how to reduce the wages in the kitchen. "I can't do that", he said, "I'm an accountant". I would have to camp down there in the restaurant to see what's going on. And they wouldn't pay the fee". Yes they would. They were going to pay me. Most accountants see their role as being the provider of financial statements, cash-flow projections and tax returns, and there's the rub. Each of these is a tool not an end in itself. It's like giving the client a hammer and saw and telling him to go build a house. He needs more than the tools, he needs to be shown how to use them. Of course the client will complain about fees whatever the level if all he receives are not useful to him. Accountants generally are flat out preparing financial statements and tax returns. Meeting dead-lines. They haven't the time to 'smell the roses'. Anything that doesn't help meet a dead-line has to wait until later. Often its too late. I may still look like an accountant, even the cool dude of accounting, but there is nothing I like more than talking with a business owner about his business. There's nothing a business owner likes more than discussing his business and planning to make more money. It's great fun and he loves to pay me for it.
Fire the CEO
If you are the boss and you think your job is to run the business, you are dead wrong. Your job, the most important job in any business, is to market the business.
Image of Your Franchise Automotive Outlet is So Important
Image of your franchise automotive outlet is so important. Some say image is everything, well then if you buy a franchise you should be constantly thinking of image and cleanliness. If you read Ray Kroc's book "Grinding it Out" (McDonalds Visionary) or Tom Monahan's (Founder of Dominos Pizza) book "Franchising for Dummies" or Howard Shultz's book; "Pour Your Heart Into it" (Story of Starbucks) you will see they all built brand on image. Even for those of you who are the extroverted sales type, plenty of examples such as "Customer's For Life" by Carl Sewel and "Exceeding Customer Expectations" by Jack Taylor (founder of Enterprise Rent-A-Car). But as I travel the country and have literally been to every city in the country over 10,000 population in the US;
10 Cardinal Rules for Business Growth
After over 30 years of participating in hundreds of businesses, competing in at least as many different industries, with companies marketing both products and services, you begin to develop and accumulate some fundamental businesses axioms or "rules of thumb" that seem to make more sense everyday and gain more value in business practice as your career continues to advance and evolve.
Financial Dose for Business
The goals of businesses have undergone much evolution from the times when entrepreneurs were content with anything that they received above the capital invested. Businesses now want to expand their reach globally, riding on the wave of technology.
Do You Need the Help of a Virtual Assistant?
Running a business, whether large, small or in your home, is full of challenges. Getting the day-to-day tasks completed, e-mail, faxes and telephones answered, bills and statements sent out, reports run, schedule updated, travel arrangements made, marketing pieces and website updated, as well as a plethora of other tasks, can be downright daunting.
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