Run a Business

How to Hook Your Audience in Seconds

How to capture attention quickly when speaking, pitching or networking

Whether you are pitching for new business, updating a client on their project or doing some face-to-face business networking, you need to act fast.

As Lyn Roseaman of Toastmasters International explains, you have less than 10 seconds to grab your audience’s attention, and show them that you are going to talk about something they’ll value or that you are part of a business they’ll want to work with. (more…)

How AI Within Telecoms Can Help Your Business

How AI can improve business telecommunications

Can Artificial Intelligence (AI) play a part in improving your business telecoms? Will it impact landline, VoIP, Mobile or fibre/copper broadband services? Mike Ianiri, of Equinox looks at where developments in AI can benefit business telecoms. (more…)

4 Ways to Show Your Authority as a Business

how to be seen as an authority

Is your company an authority in its chosen market? If it’s not — it should be.

Being seen as an authority in your line of work is a key part of attracting customers, so here are 4 ways you can build your authority and get yourself ahead of the competition. (more…)

5 Networking Hacks to Become a Better Networker

SHortcuts and tips to be better at business networking

Networking is a skill you can acquire just like any other. Sure, while you’re learning you might make some mistakes but the reality is, mistakes are lessons to learn from.

To help you quickly master the skills you’ll need, here are 5 networking hacks. (more…)

Dealing With Addiction In The Workplace

employee suffering with substance addiction

If an employee is suffering with substance addiction, this can cause real problems for a small business so needs to be dealt with promptly. However, as with all issues relating to employment law, business owners must tackle the problem very carefully, so we asked employment lawyer, Sarah Chilton to explain how employers should navigate the issue. (more…)

Balancing the Positives & Negatives of Stress at Work

how to spot signs of stress in employees

Stress is an inevitable part of everyday life and our bodies are hard-wired to respond to it. However, it’s clear stress is taking a negative toll on businesses across the country.

Poor mental health costs employers between £1,205 and £1,560 per employee every year. This cost is for all employees, not just those who are ill, so we asked Brendan Street of Nuffield Health to show how employers can cut the cost of stress. (more…)

‘Consumers’ are Becoming Obsolete, So How Should Businesses React?

post consumerism and what businesses can do

My most radical prediction is that in a matter of years, the word ‘consumer’ will have lost all relevance. Look at the signs, and it’s clear that consumerism is already fading.

In its place, we’re seeing more reciprocal relationships between brands and their customers, relationships based on genuine engagement, and not merely a quick transaction. I call the people building this movement ‘post-consumers’. (more…)

What To Do if Someone Bad-Mouths Your Business

what to do if competitor makes defamatory comments or reviews

Starting a new business is never easy especially in this day and age, when you may well be competing with hundreds of others offering the same service or selling similar/identical items.

If someone bad-mouths your business, you can lose sales immediately and suffer long-term damage to your reputation. So what can you do, if this happens to your business? We asked, Amanda Hamilton, CEO of NALP, to explain. (more…)

Is Hugging at Work Considered Sexual Harassment?

is cuddling at work sexual harrassment

When fashion chain, Ted Baker, hit the news last year among stories of ‘forced hugging’, it’s likely that many businesses across the country began to look at how practices in their own organisation’s culture may be received by its staff.

And the key question many business owners will be asking is, can hugging at work constitute sexual harassment? (more…)

How to Create Brochures that are Brilliant for Business

how to design a great brochure

Many businesses now allocate much of their marketing budget to raising their online profile. However, this does mean that some of the more traditional methods of marketing risk being side-lined.

The printed brochure is one of those valuable sales tools that can sometimes be overlooked. Yet one of the reasons that brochures have been such an integral part of marketing for so long is that they do work – as long as you get them right. (more…)

A Guide to Website Domains for Start-Ups

website domain options .co.uk .com

Your domain says a lot about you and your company. It’s your address on the internet, the place people go to find you, and a name intrinsically associated with your brand.

But is one domain name enough, and what options do small businesses have when it comes to deciding on a domain strategy? (more…)

Business Telecoms Changes – What Business Owners Need to Know

Telecoms changes - 5G

Changes in telecoms, that are already in motion, will be developing at an even faster rate over coming months. To help you understand what’s happening, we asked Mike Ianiri of independent telecoms brokerage, Equinox to explain what business owners need to know about the telecoms changes heading our way. (more…)

Are Your Employees Coasting at Work?

coasting employee

Whilst most employers will be well versed in dealing with under-performing staff, the situation can be trickier when faced with those who appear to be coasting at work.

Given the increasing demands placed on business owners it can be easy to overlook staff who are doing just enough to get by, however failing to recognise and address this can come at a significant cost to a business. (more…)

Sustainability Doesn’t Have to Be at the Expense of Profitability

business growth and sustainability

Environmentally conscious businesses are rapidly gaining much larger audiences by providing a different kind of value, as consumers are now more likely to pay more for products with an ethical incentive.

A forward-thinking mentality can set you apart from the crowd, especially in a time where sustainability and social responsibility have become top purchasing drivers. (more…)

How to Set Up a Small Business IT Network

How to set up a Small business IT network

Having a data network has become a requirement for all modern businesses, regardless of size.

An IT network gives your workforce access to the internet and other services like VoIP, allowing employees to communicate and share files with clients, customers and each other. (more…)

A Small Business Guide to Ecommerce SEO

SEO tips for ecommerce websites

If you are looking to make sales online, tackling the specialist subject of ecommerce SEO is vital to your long-term success.

With SEO for ecommerce websites requiring such specific expertise, we asked Joe Cox of Superb Digital to share his knowledge on how to grow sales through ecommerce SEO. (more…)

When Teams Go Wrong – How to Turn Around a Failing Team

tackling team problems

We’ve all been there. The team meeting where nothing is achieved. The group discussion where it feels like you can cut the air with a knife. The team that is actually a team in name only, where it’s everyone for themselves and only the most vocal, political or best-connected survives.

So how can you get a broken team back on track, and make sure everyone pulls together? (more…)

A Practical Guide to Flexible Working Rights for Small Businesses

Request for flexible working

The statutory right to request flexible working is available to all employees who complete 26 weeks of continuous employment.

Whilst flexible working is certainly becoming a more common feature in the workplace, it could stand to become even more significant in 2019 as discussions continue around whether employers will be required to state whether positions can be worked flexibly in job advertisements.

In the meantime, here’s what every small business owner needs to know about flexible working rights, and how to handle flexible working requests from staff so that you don’t end up in front of an Employment Tribunal; (more…)

Faulty or Unwanted Goods – What Are Your Customer’s Rights?

Consumer Rights Act - small business guide

If your business involves selling goods to customers you will, inevitably, need to deal with a percentage of customers that want to exchange items, or are seeking a refund.

As a small business, it’s really important to know what your legal rights and duties are when it comes to customers that have bought your goods. (more…)

5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Handling a Crisis

mistakes when handling a business crisis

With each passing year, we are barraged with more and more stories of corporate scandals and wrongdoing. Recent examples include a global carmaker rigging their vehicles to cheat on emissions tests, a major bank illegally foisting accounts and credit cards on millions of customers without their knowledge or consent, and innumerable stories about sexual misconduct by powerful, entitled executives.

And these are just a few high-profile cases – the tip of the iceberg for anyone who reads the business news. (more…)

The Importance of Roles and Responsibilities in Project Management

project management tips and advice

One of the key attributes of projects is that they are not structured in the same way as ordinary business departments. A number of people, possibly including contractors or consultants, are brought together to deliver a project.

This lack of a corporate structure leads to a need for clearly defined roles in the project structure. (more…)

Can You Dismiss an Employee if They Lied on their CV?

what to do when employee has lied on CV

It is common for individuals to exaggerate or embellish certain aspects of their CV when applying for a role, however employers can be faced with a serious problem if it turns out the person they hired does not have the experience or qualifications needed to carry out the job at hand.

So what can you do if after you’ve hired an employee, you subsequently find out they lied on their CV? (more…)

Becoming an Employer – Your Responsibilities When You Hire Staff

what you need to do when employing staff

No matter how successful your business has been with just you working in it, if you want to grow you’ll need to employ people.

There are innumerable benefits of having employees. The right people will ease the workload on you and allow you take holidays. Good staff keep your business running day to day, so you can focus on the most important part of your role as the leader: growing the business. (more…)

How Companies Can Motivate Staff in 2019

ways to motivate staff

Human resources as a role within organisations has grown significantly in the last 20 years, and today, employers need to find ways to motivate their staff and keep them satisfied at work.

Not only are happier staff likely to be more productive, but they are a less likely to leave and companies will save money on recruiting and retraining staff. With this in mind, we offer a number of ways that companies can motivate staff in 2019. (more…)

How Can Your Small Business Take Advantage of New Features on iOS 12 and Android Pie?

business features iOS12 Andriod Pie

Every year there is a new mobile operating system update, so businesses can be forgiven for not being aware of the vast array of new features that are made available.

In fact, it is usually the case that most users are not engaged enough to uncover the secrets that a new OS has to offer. So to help you benefit from the best new features on iOS 12 and Android Pie, we asked Anthony Main of The Distance to highlight the new features that businesses can take advantage of. (more…)

How NOT to Network – 7 Business Networking Mistakes to Avoid

How to network successfully

When you start your own business, one of the first things you need to do is to start promoting it and finding customers?

Depending on the type of business you are in, one age-old and sure-fire way to build relationships is through networking. However, if you are to enjoy the full rewards of networking you need to know what you are doing. (more…)

How Mediation Can Help Your Business Avoid Going to Court

commercial mediation to settle dispute

If you run a business it’s inevitable that disputes will arise. Whether it’s problems with suppliers failing to meet their obligations, employee issues or non-payment by customers, when a dispute arises it can be difficult knowing how best to resolve the problem with the minimum of disruption, time and expense.

Taking the matter to court to resolve is costly and takes a long time, so we asked Tim Bennett of Fairlead Mediation to explain how businesses can use mediation to resolve disputes more effectively. (more…)

6 Ways to Maintain IT Security for Your New Business

IT security for new business

Starting a new business is a mixture of fun, fear and challenge. For many new business owners, the technology side of things can be particularly fearful. With so many things to think about, how do you know what you do and don’t need to be able to make a success of your new business, and stay on the right side the law?

So to help you tackle the tech, we asked Mike Ianiri to outline the technology essentials for startups, and how to maintain IT security from day one. (more…)

How to Prevent Hacking on Your Website

ways to stop website being hacked

The role of cybersecurity is becoming increasingly important in 2019, with studies showing that the average data breach in the UK can cost companies around £2.7 million and up to 163 days to correct.

Whether it is phishing or external hacks, the exposure of key data can be hugely costly to an organisation and some may never recover. With this in mind, there are a few simple things you can do in order to protect your website, big or small, from hacking and the associated costs. (more…)