Business Owner – Know Your Business!

I’ve heard a saying which goes something like this: “To make a mistake, have an employee handle it, but, if you really want to have it screwed up, have a manager do it.

Well, in some cases, if not many, this is true. And sometimes the owner knows even less, especially in a large company.

I’ve seen this first hand. I saw a small business recently, where the owner had to take over some duties from a few people who’d left the small business suddenly. The owner did a decent job overall, but clearly had forgotten some things and a low-level employee had to “re-show” him some of the ropes. So it turned out ok.

But, this shows how business owners, and big executives, need to know, or re-learn, as the case may be, as much of the workings of the business as possible, especially if the company is a small business.

Though it may be impossible for large company executives and CEO’s to know all or even most of the workings of their companies, large companies do have the luxury of having many employees, who at least have an idea of what should be done, so the chances are good that they will have people to come in and take over for suddenly missing employees.

But a small business doesn’t have that luxury. If they only have one counter person or warehouse person or parts person, and the owner hasn’t kept up or has considered himself or herself too busy to take even one day to check out the inner workings of the business, there could be a real problem if a key employee has to leave suddenly for whatever reason.

A business owner could find himself at the front counter when the regular counter person suddenly leaves. If that owner has forgotten the part numbers, or how to work the computer or billing system, or if it is a new one, completely different from that which he may have once used, what then?

And if the business is a fast food joint, it’s a good idea if there’s more than one person in the company who can cook in short order fashion. An empty kitchen serves no food and will have no customers.

 

 

 

 

 

If that owner has kept up, then chances are, things will go better until a replacement person is hired.

Also, a plus to the owner’s “visiting” all of the “areas” of the company from time to time may show that owner just how valuable his or her employees really are.

So, know your business to keep that business running, and may you have success!

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These Business Mistakes Could Get You in Huge Trouble

Everyone makes mistakes, but some are bigger than others. There are mistakes that might make you stumble, although you ultimately learn and grow from them in the end. Then there are those mistakes that are so big, you might learn a lesson, but it’s a bit too late. When you run a business, there are some incredibly unfortunate mistakes you could make. If you’re not careful, some of them could get you in big trouble. You could find yourself on the wrong side of the law, even if you never meant to be, or you could find your business’s reputation in ruins. Avoid making these big business mistakes, and you can protect yourself and your company.

By Pixabay

Being Lax on Health and Safety

Your employees need to be safe while doing their jobs. Also, any members of the public who could be at risk when on or near your business premises also need to be protected. You could be in huge trouble if someone becomes ill or is injured because you neglected your responsibilities as a business owner. Having a solid strategy for dealing with health and safety is vital. You can see more from fallprotectoinpros.com, where you can learn about preventing falls, one of the leading types of workplace accident. You should also make sure you have worker’s compensation protection and public liability insurance.

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Failing to Treat Employees Fairly

Treating your employees fairly can involve a number of factors, starting with your hiring practices. You need to follow the law in regards to equality, from asking the right interview questions to making hiring decisions. You also need to consider factors such as fair pay and minimum wage, creating a safe and equal work environment, and offering benefits to employees. Having an HR department makes it a lot easier to stay on top of these things and ensure your business is operating legally.

Getting Your Finances Wrong

Money keeps your business running, and getting the numbers right is essential for its survival. It’s not just important for good business, though. You also need to make sure your finances are correct so that you stay on the right side of the law. For example, filing your taxes requires you to make sure you’re careful about your numbers. Using an accountant is best practice if you want to report your income and expenditure as accurately as possible. Find out the benefits of using an accountant at kashflow.com.

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Failing to Check Intellectual Property Ownership

You’re releasing a new product, or perhaps naming your business or product. Have you checked patents, trademarks, and other intellectual property registers? If you haven’t, you could soon find that someone who has registered their intellectual property isn’t happy about you using a design, a name or a slogan that belongs to them. Checking to make sure you’re not using something you shouldn’t be can be tough, but you can get help from a professional service or lawyer.

You don’t want your business to be finished before you can really get started. Avoid these massive mistakes, and your company can live to see another day.

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Threats to Your Small Business That Will Prevent It From Gaining Success

Small business owners all over the world have one thing in common: a dream. They wish that in the future, their small business will grow from the humble beginnings of a startup and reach international recognition. They dream that their business will have thousands of employees, hundreds of office locations and a product to be reckoned with. Sadly, those dreams will quickly be stamped out by these following issues if they aren’t taken seriously enough. From fraudster employees to copycats, here are the threats you need to look out for as you’re running your business.

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Lack of Continuity

 

When your business suffers an accident, such as being burned down in a fire or when your internet connection goes down, you need to have a continuity plan. In short, this is essentially a backup plan that you engage when something goes wrong. For instance, if you work exclusively in the cloud, then you’re technically immune to any kind of hardware failures, but you won’t be able to work without an internet connection. On the contrary, if most of your work is stored on physical mediums at work, then an office fire or flood could destroy the hardware and it will forever be lost. The best solution is to mix both mediums and hatch a continuity plan.

 

Fraudulent Employees

 

When employees commit fraud, there are no second chances. You need to terminate their contract and replace them as soon as possible. Luckily, there are services like MCC4Tax that will prevent your company from suffering the consequences of something like tax evasion that was committed by a fraudulent employee and not by you. Fraudulent employees could also mean employees that pretend to be something they aren’t. A good example of this is when an employee claims to know certain skills and does a half-arsed job when asked to work. Get rid of these types as soon as possible and ensure that your recruitment process combs through every bit of history your new recruits have.

 

Spreading Resources Correctly

 

One of the biggest decisions a business owner has to make is the choice between diversification and specialisation. One one hand, diversification helps you reach a wider audience, but specialisation helps you build a loyal fan base. The decision to diversify or specialise ultimate comes down to you as the business owner, but it’s worth analysing the advantages and disadvantages of both in your situation. For instance, if your main product is a smartphone, then diversifying it to have a large screen model might spread your production resources too thinly because there isn’t enough demand to make it worthwhile. On the contrary, specialising your current product and creating an updated version might alienate new potential buyers because you have a niche in the market.

 

Copyright Disputes

 

Lastly, let’s not forget about copyright disputes. If a copycat is trying to mimic your product, then you need to hire a lawyer as soon as possible and send a cease and desist letter. If they don’t respond, then take legal action and shut them down. Copyright disputes also work the other way, however. For example, if you’re randomly stealing images from the internet to use on your website, then you might have a nasty surprise when someone claims you’re using their work without their permission, and this could result in expensive image copyright fines that could set your business back.

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On The Open Road: A Career As A Truck Driver

Choosing the right career can often leave you feeling overwhelmed with the options you have available. Whether you are fresh out of school, struggling with a midlife crisis, or just wanting a change of direction and more flexibility, you might find yourself looking at your options and making a decision. You may, or may not, have considered a career on the open road before as a truck driver. It can be a very rewarding career path to choose. If you are considering this option then here are some of the things you should consider.

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Do you enjoy driving?

 

One of the first things to ask yourself is whether or not you actually enjoy driving. After all, that is what this career choice entails. Driving for long stretches of time, and often at different times of the day in all kinds of weather conditions. You need to also make sure you are physically and mentally up for the challenge. Not only are you sitting and driving for long periods of time, but you will also be spending a lot of time on your own. This can be hard for someone who isn’t comfortable in their own company.

 

Do you need additional tests and qualifications on your license?

 

Depending on what avenue of truck driving you embark on, you may find that you need to take additional tests to make sure your driving license is up to date with what vehicles you can drive. This might mean training and cost from the outset, so make sure you are prepared for that.

 

Accidents do happen

 

Even though you are driving a big vehicle accident can still happen, and some cases, they can be much worse due to the size of the vehicle. But don’t worry as this can be taken care of when entrusting the help of trucking accidents lawyers to take on your case. You may not be at fault or may have suffered an injury because of it. The experts can ensure everything is handled correctly, so although this may be a worry for taking on this career, you are assured that you have people on your side.

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Be comfortable with your choice

 

Some companies will offer you two sorts of job opportunities when it comes to driving trucks for them. You may choose to do a standard 40-hour working week. In this case, you will turn up, driver your truck for the set working day, and then return home each day. You may find the journeys are shorter in this circumstance. Other options include driving longer distance which may see you traveling huge distances and being away from home.

 

Be aware of other duties involved

 

It sometimes doesn’t end with driving the truck. In some job situations, you may be required to unload or load the truck. This may mean a bit of heavy lifting. You might be best to ensure that you are in good health to take on this sort of role. Or, make sure you go for a truck driving job that just means driving only, and the responsibility of the load lies elsewhere.

 

I hope this helps you if this is a career choice you are making.

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Online Learning and How it Just Might Change Your Life

It’s interesting how readily young people embrace the internet. For those of us in our middle years, the sheer volume of information that can be accessed by a few simple keystrokes or dabs of a touch screen would have boggled our minds 30 years ago.

 

Digital communications have handed us the keys to a virtual kingdom of data that is already shaping the way in which we learn and assimilate information. I don’t know about you, but I was initially mistrustful of the non-traditional online approach to higher education, but recent years have seen a huge boom in the legitimacy of online learning with a wealth of academic and vocational qualification available through digital channels.

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While distance learning is nothing new (the UK’s Open University is actually the country’s largest learning institution and still a pioneer in distance learning), the range of courses available online from reputable accredited institutions has never been greater and more accessible.

 

Let’s have a look at some of the advantages of online learning and how it can help you take the next step in your career, or start all over again.

 

Online learning has some inherent advantages over its campus-based counterpart:

 

    • Variety – Online courses from bachelor’s to doctorate level are available in just about any field of study.
    • Lower costs – Online courses are generally cheaper than campus based courses as there are fewer overheads. You’ll also have no commuting costs and materials will often be made available to you for free as part of the course.

 

  • Comfort – You’ll never be stuck in traffic getting to a virtual lecture. You can study from the comfort of your favorite armchair… In your pyjamas. In terms of comfort, online learning leaves campus learning in the dust.

 

  • Convenience – Your studies can fit around your life rather than the other way around. You can work as many hours as you want and fulfill your parental commitments and manage your learning in your own time.
  • Greater focus – Studying at home, you won’t be distracted by others and can concentrate completely on your learning.
  • Seamless career advancement – You can learn alongside work with no suspicious gaps in your resume.
  • No commuting – Many campus based learners spend hours travelling to and from campus which can be time consuming and potentially hazardous due to fatigue or weather conditions.
  • Improves technical literacy – Older readers may have a very cautious relationship with technology. Even the most basic online courses will increase your proficiency and comfort dealing with computers.  

 

Gaining new knowledge and skills

 

Many of us want to gain new knowledge and skills later in life but are reticent to do this in a campus environment. We’re all a little insecure when outside of our comfort zone and the prospect of strolling into a lecture surrounded by bright young things who may already be more proficient in  our chosen field of study could be daunting enough to put us off.

 

Online learning allows you to learn at your own pace without comparing yourself normatively to others, and the sheer variety of online courses means that whatever field of study you wish to pursue, however esoteric, it’s within your reach.

 

Advancing your career

 

Many of us want to pursue continual professional development outside of the scope of what our current employers will fund (or allow). Fortunately there are a wealth of vocationally specific courses, such as this accredited RN to BSN program online course designed to help nurses expand their portfolio of skills and take the next step in their career.

 

Whatever your chosen field, chances are there’s a course out there that will allow you to take the next step in your career and wave goodbye to employers who have perhaps taken you for granted or under-invested in your development.

 

Changing careers

 

A career change in midlife can be a dauntingly disruptive experience for anyone. Even with an incredible support network it can be virtually impossible to gain new knowledge and skills without quitting your job and enduring a financially troubling interstice between careers. Online learning allows students to arrange their studies around their existing work and family commitments. The flexibility and control over the pace of your own learning makes it ideal for those who’d prefer to endure their current jobs while they study to allow themselves a little more financial stability.

 

The ability to manage our learning alongside work and family, combined by the lack of conspicuous gaps in our resumes will make us more appealing to potential employers.

 

Whatever preconceived notions you may have had about online learning, it’s definitely worth looking into courses that suit your interests. They could just change your life!

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Serious Business: Lend Legitimacy To Your Company With These Simple Tips

The challenges that come with running a small business are often pretty clear and certainly well documented. After all, if setting up your own business was easy, then everyone would do it! Whether you’re attempting to drum up the necessary capital to get things off the ground to trying to find the right people actually to be a part of your business, there are plenty of roadblocks that can stand in your way when you’re in those all important early days. However, there’s one serious roadblock that can stand in the way of many businesses that a lot of people tend to overlook right up until the point that they run headlong into it. When your business is up and coming, it can be incredibly difficult to get anyone to take you seriously. A lot of people, from customers to competitors to investors, look at a small, brand new business and assume that it’s going to be inherently amateurish in the way that it does business or that it can’t offer the same quality of service as larger, better-established business. However, that doesn’t need to be the case. After all, if this were a roadblock that you couldn’t ever get past, then no business would ever make it beyond the earliest stages. The key is to make your business appear to be working at the same level as your more well-established competitors. Doing so isn’t always easy, but it is a necessary part of bringing a sense of legitimacy to your business. Here are just a few simple tips to make sure that people can see you’re serious when it comes to your business.

 

Work on your image

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Branding is something that just about every business is aware of the importance of. However, not every business has the capacity to pay huge amounts of money to companies that can design incredibly logos for them. The problem that this causes is that smaller businesses try to create branding themselves and, if they fail, they often fail spectacularly. You basically have two choices when it comes to your branding. You either have someone else to it, or your do it yourself. If you’re having someone else do it, then try to find someone who isn’t going to charge a lot of money but can still do good work. This might be a friend or a designer who, like you, is up and coming in their field. If you’re doing the branding yourself, then you’ve got some research to do. Learn to use editing software like Photoshop. Learn the basics of design and color theory. Also, keep things simple. If you’re designing a logo and brand yourself, then you don’t want to overreach. A simple logo is much harder to mess up than a complicated one.

 

Understand customer psychology

 

To understand how you’re going to present your business to your customers, you need to know how your customers think. Look at the habits of your target customer and try to hone in on what it is that draws them to specific businesses. You’ll often find that it’s an image of legitimacy and respectability, even more than branding, which draws in customers. If they look at your business and, for example, see that your business’s address is just a home address, then that’s going to send alarm bells ringing in their minds. Unless they are actually in a position where they want to connect with smaller businesses, something like that is going to make you seem amateurish. Check out some virtual mailbox reviews as a way to get around this problem. This allows you to present your business address as an office, then anything sent to that office will be forwarded to you. This might seem like a very small change, but it can have a tremendous impact on the way that customers think about and perceive your business.

 

Know your limitations

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There’s something admirable about always trying to push your business to the next level. However, trying to reach beyond your grasp can lead to some problems as well. If you try something that is totally beyond the capabilities of your business and fails, people are going to see your business as something that can’t compete in the business marketplace. However, keeping your scope small and only working within the realms of what your business can actually achieve means that you’re much more likely to succeed. Sure, you’re not going to be competing with the big businesses right away if you do this, but succeeding within a limited scope is going to make your business look much more professional and appealing than if you try to reach for the stars and fall flat on your face.

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Log Onto A Digital Career!

We live in a world that is constantly evolving and changing, and this has never been more prevalent than in the digital world. The world is getting smarter: smartphones, tablets, smart televisions and instant access to information make our planet as switched on as ever. Due to this, careers in the digital world are on the rise and digital education is becoming increasingly popular.

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When people think of working in the digital field, their minds immediately think of IT. For some, a career in IT is not appealing, but it’s important to know that a digital career embraces far more than just the IT field. Sure, there are careers in SAP and various niche specialties, but there is also digital marketing, website building and graphic design that are all important players in a digital game. The skills required for a digital career do vary by industry, and researching your options thoroughly before deciding which route to go down is very important.

The education required for a career in the digital world is often complex, but thankfully there is a huge amount of choice out there. If you want to work in an IT field, it makes sense to study at a school of computing and if you hold an interest in the way computers process their information, you’d be on the right path. For those who love to be creative, then studying graphic design tech skills would be right. Graphic design is so much more than drawing now, especially with the popularity of websites that need designing and building, as well as companies requiring branding help.

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Making the right subject choices at school level will greatly help you embark in a career in digital media. If the school you are in doesn’t offer computer sciences or digital technology as an option, don’t panic! There are so many other subjects that can support your interest and once you go into college and study at a higher level, you can take the knowledge you have gained from those subjects and maximise on those.

The world of marketing is increasingly needing professionals and experts who specialise in digital media development, user experience and digital marketing. Everything in the world is moving online at a rapid pace, and the development of websites and social media advertising means that more careers are being carved out in this industry. There is so much that digital technology is influencing, that even jobs in the retail industry are being influenced and affected by the digital world. This means that there is room for digital careers in every industry.

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The changes that digital is bringing to today’s jobs include the need for new skills and the opportunity to be exposed to new skills. More and more colleges across the globe are picking up courses and degrees within the digital world. Leading universities are changing their curriculums to go with the changing needs in the digital world. This is allowing more and more people to study a digital field, including programming and HTML. HTML is becoming more of a second language for people working in the IT industry, and this bleeds into careers in digital creative marketing. If you decide to go for a career in the digital world, your skills will be transferable across so many avenues that you are spoilt for choice in which way to go.

The rise in the digital career gives people far more scope for entrepreneurial activity and innovative thinking. You could start a business from home with your knowledge of design or digital media development. Even IT professionals are branching out as freelancers and making their own way in the digital business world. The roles you currently work in could see a change in its description, especially if you are working in one of the many branches of technology. The change in your job description will allow you to gain training in digital technology and eventually expand into the area.

Choosing a career in digital is not an easy option. You are choosing to learn about an industry that makes significant changes and evolves very quickly year on year. If you want to work in a field that has constant upgrades, constant learning and a constant need for people to work, you would be right in choosing your career to be in digital technology. Everyone wants a career they can expand in, and digital tech is no different!

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