10 Tips for Starting a Business at University (from someone who did it themselves)

how to set up a business when studying

A number of the world’s largest companies were founded by ambitious and determined university students who weren’t afraid to dream.

Most people know that Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook in his Harvard dorm room, but were you aware that FedEx, the global courier service, was first imagined by Frederick W. Smith in an undergraduate paper while he was studying at Yale? (more…)

How to Make Your Business More Innovative with the 6 I’s of Innovation

Increase innovation with this 6 Stage process

Managing cash flow, hiring new employees, delivering top quality customer service, these and many others, occupy the minds of small business owners.

Innovate? That is number 50 on the To Do list, when headspace allows. Yet innovation, creating value out of ideas that are new to you – is the only way to ensure you are relevant for every stage of your company’s growth. (more…)

How a Small Business Can Get Products Stocked in Supermarkets

how small business can get product stocked in supermarkets

For entrepreneurs with new food or beverage products, getting listed by a supermarket can feel like a watershed moment for your brand.

Your brand awareness is likely to skyrocket with sales following. You also get positive brand association by being seen in a major supermarket, which can help secure more stockists. (more…)

How to Bounce Back from a Business Failure

how to recover from a failed business

A failed business can have a devastating impact on a business owner. But, the lessons learned can also make an entrepreneur stronger, wiser and more determined to succeed next time.

Author and international speaker, Jonathan MacDonald, was floored by a business failure, but after the initial despair, he picked himself up and used the experience to shape his future success. (more…)

How to Create Business Cards that Make a Big Impression

how to create a great business card

Most business cards are about as much use as a scrap of paper with a name and number scribbled on it. That’s fine if you are looking for a date, but not so good for showcasing your business.

With a little thought, however, it’s easy to create a business card that packs a real promotional punch and helps you, and your small business, stand out from the crowd. (more…)

The Art of Delegation in a Small Business

delegating in small business

Delegation should be easy to do, or so you might think, however it can be very challenging in certain situations particularly for owners of small businesses.

As a business owner with a very small team, I have found it can be even harder to let go. It’s my baby. (more…)

How to Get Your Pitching Right at the First Attempt

get business pitch right

“Put that coffee down. Coffee’s for closers only”. Alec Baldwin delivered this iconic line in the movie Glengarry Glen Ross. It may sound harsh but that is the reality.

Pitching an idea and closing a deal can be a nerve-wracking process. Even successful business greats like Richard Branson found the skill of pitching hard to come by. (more…)

Business Energy Switching Myths

business energy switch myths busted

If you run a business and you’ve never switched to a new energy contract, you could be paying as much as 40% more than you need to for gas and electricity.

A recent study carried out by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) found that a staggering £7 billion is being wasted by small and medium-sized businesses overpaying on their gas and electricity bills. (more…)

The Do’s and Don’ts of Successful Entrepreneurs

what successful entrepreneurs have in common

We can all learn from studying successful business people. How do some individuals seem to have the knack of succeeding? Are they lucky, or do they have certain skills or traits that help them to achieve?

Paul Bassi CBE, a successful business owner himself, looks at what successful entrepreneurs have in common. (more…)

6 Things You’ll Need To Launch a Thriving Food or Drink Product

Small businesses have a tougher time than their larger and better-established competitors. Unlike the big brands, who enjoy plentiful resources and instant recognition in their industry, SMEs have plenty of hurdles to overcome, so we asked Craig Sams and William Fugard, co-founders of Gusto Organic drinks to share what they have learned from launching Gusto, Green & Black’s and Whole Earth Foods. (more…)

Where to Locate Your Business? The Best UK Cities for StartUps

Entrepreneurship is on the rise in the UK, and one of the first decisions you will need to make when starting a business is where to locate your venture.

Even today, the era of the digital nomad, the place you choose to set up shop – figuratively or literally – can have an effect on the prospects of your business, both in terms of profitability and long term success. (more…)

Selling a Small Business: The Why & The How

tips on successfully selling a business

When it comes to selling your business, there are a number of routes you can take. To ensure your business sale goes smoothly and you get full value for your business, we look at the process of selling a small business and highlight some of the key considerations you will need to make. (more…)

How to Future-Proof Your Business Reputation

maintaining your business reputation in the future

Whether you’re an ardent protestor or you prefer the status quo, it’s hard to deny that society is rapidly shifting power to the people and away from traditional institutions.

Populist politicians are seizing on the mistrust of ‘the establishment’, #MeToo is cracking down on men misusing their power, while the recent plastic straw ban show the powerful effect of a coordinated social media campaign. (more…)

Find Your “Remarkable” – How to Really Stand Out From the Crowd

How to get your business to stand out from the crowd

It’s no secret that most startups struggle to build a solid, scalable and remarkable business. Most remain stuck fighting for the attention of their audience, investing time and money trying to convince buyers and often engaging in price races to the bottom that leaves everyone exhausted and defeated.

The solution? Simple! Not easy, but simple indeed. (more…)

What Businesses Can Learn from Successful Musicians

what businesses can learn from successful music artists

The most successful bands are now the ones that engage their fans. These fans don’t just bring recognition – they bring financial success too. They are what allows the band to make money and prosper.

Businesses want to do the same, so we asked Mark Jennings, founder of Subba Media, to reveal how musicians are engaging with fans, and the lessons business can learn. (more…)

10 Considerations When Setting Up an Online Business

tips on starting online business

The UK is the third largest e-commerce market in the world and for good reason. The internet has allowed innovative small businesses to reach a much wider audience, while cutting down on overhead costs.

Plenty of UK entrepreneurs and startups have capitalised on this and built a lucrative business out of selling their products online. If you want to get into this space, you first need to do your research and make sure everything is in place, from your online checkout to your online marketing. (more…)

From Concept to Creation: The 10 Steps of Product Design

steps of product design steps

Devising new products and bringing them to market are vital parts of growing a business, but successful new product development rarely happens by accident.

Product design is a complicated area, so we asked Chris Flynn, founder of product design consultancy Flynn Product Design to take us through the key phases of product design. (more…)

6 Lessons I’ve Learned Launching a Tech Start-Up

6 key steps to starting a successful technology business

Anyone who decides to launch their own company is bound to experience challenges along the way, and these challenges will all be different depending on what sector you decide to tap into.

For me, I knew launching a tech start-up in one of the most rapidly changing industries would be an exciting prospect. I knew I was bound to make mistakes but also understood the importance of learning and developing from them. (more…)

How to Switch and Save on Business Energy

how to switch business energy supplier

When it comes to business profitability, you’ll know that keeping overheads as low as you can is vital. But countless companies end up unwittingly paying more than they should for their business energy. And with energy prices on the rise, this can add up substantially, especially during winter months.

But how do you know if your business is on the best rates, or if you’re overpaying and need to switch to a better deal? (more…)

Business Energy for Startups – Understand Your Costs & How to Get the Best Deal

business energy tips for new business

Starting a new business is exciting but can often be stressful too. Keeping costs at a minimum and budgeting effectively is a sure-fire way to get you through those difficult patches.

One of the quickest and easiest methods is to compare your energy tariff and switch to a better deal. A quick business energy price comparison can result in up to 30% savings per year. So, while business energy is not the most thrilling of money-savers, it’s certainly one of the most effective. (more…)

The Power of the ‘Pilot’ – 3 Reasons Why You Should Test Your New Business Before Launch

testing your business idea

Setting up a new business is an exciting, thrilling and all encompassing challenge. It is the best and most stretching form of personal and professional development that a person can do.

Creating and selling your own products and services, building a network of happy customers and managing your own time are just three of the perks that come with running your own business. But all too often, I meet entrepreneurs who are burnt out, stressed and lacking in sufficient income. This is often because they did not trial their business ideas before they got stuck in. So today, I want to convince you that you should ‘pilot’ your business idea before you launch your new venture for real. (more…)

How to Be a Leader Rather Than a Manager

The transition from being a manager to becoming business leader, is one that many new business owners will need to make.

Often, the success or failure of your business depends on how well and how quickly you can adapt to this fundamental role change. (more…)

9 Ways You Can Use Props to Make Your Presentations More Impactful and Memorable

grab audience attention with prop

How much of what you say is actually remembered? As a business owner, communicating your vision and expectations is vital if your business is to succeed, so strong and effective communication skills are a pre-requisite for any business owner.

You need your presentations or speeches to be remembered and acted upon long after the staff or board meeting, but in reality, most presentations are forgotten after a few hours. Even less is remembered after a few days and many people will only remember about 5% of what you said after a month. So how can you make sure your presentations are memorable and impactful? (more…)

On to a Winner? How to Tell if Your Product Idea is Really a Good One

business idea - success or failure

So, you have a great product idea, it’s exciting, you see the value and believe it could change your company’s future or launch your next new business. This idea may be a brand new product solving a problem, or a better way to address a market need than the competitors out there today.

Knowing that not all business ideas make it, jumping into your new idea can be a significant risk, requiring you to commit substantial resources. However, it doesn’t have to be, and there are a few questions to focus on early to test your idea’s potential. (more…)

4 Elements to Consider When Designing Product Packaging

Design product packaging

“You should never judge a book by its cover”, or so runs the popular advice. But there’s a reason that these words are so often-repeated; we often need to remind ourselves that first impressions aren’t everything. Whether we’re meeting a new person for the first time, or picking up an unfamiliar product, our natural drive to form a snap judgement is often irresistible.

Of course, the fact that so many of us are innate cover-judgers makes proper presentation essential – not only for book publishers, but for anyone looking to sell physical products of any sort. (more…)

5 Factors to Consider When Expanding Your Business Overseas

business expansion - factors to consider when growing overseas

According to a study by Elements Global Services, 69 percent of UK businesses are planning to expand internationally in the next three years. At the same time, 58 percent of businesses described hiring and onboarding overseas staff as challenging.

Problems identified in the research include setting up global payroll, benefits programs and other HR essentials; costs and time involved in recruitment; and overcoming cultural barriers between overseas and domestic staff. How, then, can businesses face these challenges with confidence? (more…)

7 Strategies for Building a Valuable and Enjoyable Business

create valuable business assets

When I first discovered entrepreneurship, I was a blind optimist and believed that most entrepreneurs were succeeding, earning big money, enjoying freedom and making an impact.

I knew there was work involved, but I couldn’t understand why people wouldn’t choose to be an entrepreneur – success was a sure thing if you were ambitious, tenacious and focused on adding value. (more…)

How to Turn Around Your Presentation When Something Has Gone Wrong

turn around presentation going wrong

As a small business owner, you may be giving a presentation to customers, at a networking event, to potential investors or for staff training.

What will you do if your presentation is turning out to be a nightmare: projector’s not working, presentation not displaying as you want or you have the audience from hell? How can we turn a challenging presentation into a winning one? (more…)

How to survive tough times in business

Surviving business difficulties

Running a small business can be a bit of a roller-coaster. Just when you think everything is going smoothly, an unexpected shock can hit your business and all of a sudden, your business is experiencing a very tough time.

So how do you turn your business around when times are bad, and all seems lost? Here, business owner, Anthony Main reveals how he saved his business from folding, and shares what he learned from his experience.

(more…)