We all take pleasure when our ideas come to fruition. We’re even more pleased when the ideas have an impact by improving motivation, innovation or productivity, among other areas. The spread of an idea can benefit many, but that popularity can also alter and distort the original. You can read more over at Entrepreneur Europe...
If you are a business owner, you surely start the day with a question: how can I do more? Of course, what we want is not to work longer hours and end up affecting our personal lives, but to be more effective with the resources and talents we have. Productivity has not only an impact on the objectives we reach and performance of our business, but also our stress levels. So what is it that we can do to work better? Here we share some tips that you can apply from tomorrow onwards.
Plan each workday
Before leaving the office, review your schedule and set your to-do list for the next day. Determine which are the priorities, give them a schedule and be realistic about the time available. It is better to move slowly and steadily than to remain stuck in the same place. Look at what is going wrong in the office and if things need to be changed. Many businesses fail to see things that are going wrong. So whether it's talking about updates to your technology or being more productive with your energy, there are things to think about. Perhaps you need to look at upgrading your Fuel Tanks, or maybe you need to change your phone systems, planning what needs to be changed will make things more productive.
Multitasking is a myth, and we can't all be good at everything. Some studies show how this way of working can reduce productivity by up to 40%. In small and even medium-sized businesses, it is very common for one or more people to do tasks of a very different nature throughout the day. Still, it can become a risk to productivity if not properly addressed. Focusing on specific objectives is a sure way to increase the productivity of your company. Have your team delegate.
With constant meetings, social media, and instant messaging, it's hard to stay focused for more than half an hour on a single task. To avoid distractions, establish work blocks and respect them as if it were the presentation to your most important client. Move your smartphone away from your desk or silence alerts from applications such as social media. And if you are working on something very important, let your team know that you cannot be disturbed unless it is an emergency.
Forget about repetitive tasks.
One of the biggest challenges is repetitive, time-consuming jobs that distract you and your employees from those that are much more important to the business, like selling products and winning customers. An example of finances, and it is that recording or controlling all invoices, expenses, or payments is a task in itself. The better you look after your finances, the more chance you have of being able to put money into other areas, such as social media. To make your life as an entrepreneur easier, you need to tackle such routine tasks to increase productivity properly. There are dozens of ways to save time and gain productivity in the short and medium-term, such as direct debit of payments to suppliers in a bank account and even immediate payment with a company card.
In an age where we have unlimited access to pretty much everything you can imagine, it’s easy to become tempted to learn as much as possible.
Maybe you feel as though becoming an expert in many fields will benefit your career or business prospects? And in some ways, you’re not wrong to think that- having knowledge in several areas will set you aside from the crowd as well as giving you the personal gratification of learning something new.
However, there are several reasons why it’s often good, and not self-limiting to become a hyper specialist.
Here are some of them..
You get to become an expert in your field
One of the best reasons to focus on one or two areas of expertise is that the more you invest in your knowledge the better.
Imagine if an athlete decided that they wanted to spread themselves across more areas of the athletics industry. They decided they want to train, coach, advertise sporting events, and run the ticket desk, too. While all of these things are jobs that are related to the athletics field, the more this athlete does that will take them away from their training and participation in events, the less time and energy they have to focus on the things that set them apart from the others.
It’s the same if you’re in marketing. You decide you also want to try your hand at the web design, content writing, accounts, and sales as well. You’ll be spreading yourself too thinly and potentially missing out on some key aspects of the ever-evolving world of marketing. Staying focused on this one area will mean you get to invest all of your energy in becoming the best.
You can offer something unique
Imagine you’re at a restaurant and the server gives you a 10 page menu to choose your meal from. Not only are you more likely to end up plagued by indecision, but the choice you make may not result in the best quality meal for your time and money. It’s the same in business. If you offer too much, you’re not going to offer the best quality out there.
However, if you head to the sandwich bar three doors down the road who offer one meat, one vegetarian, and one fish option with only three kinds of bread, you know that you’re going to get something a bit more special. This expert specialism is what keeps people coming back. Sure, not everybody wants a sandwich all the time, but when they do, they’ll know exactly where to go.
It can get even more specific than that, even. Medifit Design and Construct are a great example of a business that takes something that people look for (design agency) with a specialism (for healthcare practices). People looking for those particular services may be able to find a company that will do a good job designing their medical practice, but perhaps none as good as one that will be able to deliver the same attention to detail as a specialist company.
This is why becoming hyper specialist isn’t limiting.
Instagram - a platform which, at first, was used to show others a glimpse of our daily lives online via our photos, has now turned into a channel that engages a billion users. Since its explosion in popularity, many brands have turned to the platform to build their social presence and engage with their consumers in a bid to drive their outreach and profits. With 80 percent of users following at least one business on the channel, it is easy to see why so many companies are keen to grow their accounts. If you are a small business who wants to learn how to make an online community, expand your account, and grow your following, follow these three tips and build your presence up the right way.
Post consistently You may have heard this one a million times already, but there is a reason why this gold nugget of advice keeps popping up over and over again - it really works! The more often and regularly you post, the more likes, and consequently more followers you will get, and accounts that post at least seven times or more throughout an entire week gain followers and likes faster than those who don’t. Furthermore, having a regular and steady flow of content also works in your favour when it comes to Instagram’s famous algorithm, with consistency being a key element to getting your posts up to the top of the timeline due to more shares and engagement with your followers. Therefore for your brand to see the best results, plan your posts ahead of time, and already have content to last you at least a week. This way, you won’t be rushing to get a last-minute photo, and you won’t risk the chance of not having enough material to post, causing you to be irregular, which could have a big impact on your following and engagement.
Engage and converse
It’s no use creating beautiful visuals and captivating captions if you aren’t going to engage with your audience. The platform is a great way to make users aware of your business through conversation, especially as more and more people are using social media as a point of contact for many brands. Be open and communicative, and supportive and allow a discussion to get going, whether it’s about serious queries, customer care, random questions, or just to chat and to thank those who are praising your brand and products. Engaging with as many comments and questions as possible will make the difference when it comes to gaining more followers, converting your audience into customers, and improving your relationship with pre-existing customers. By engaging with them, your customers will see that you care about them and feel a more personal connection with you, creating more trust.
Know when to post
You can have the best post in the world, but if you share it when it’s the middle of the night for most of your audience or when most of them are at work, chances are they aren’t going to see it. Use the free analytics tool that can be found under the Followers section in business accounts to figure out the best times for you to post. By using a targeted approach, if you post at optimal times for your audience, you are likely to get more engagement. Look at what has and hasn’t worked for you in the past regarding how much engagement you got at various times to allow you to plan how you share your content more effectively. Alternatively, use a scheduling tool to automatically publish your content during the times when your followers are most engaged.
The subject of 'Free Followers' is one that comes up often, but spending your money on getting those 'fake followers' might well leave you both out of pocket as well as those followers, and this guide will tell you why.
Outsourcing crucial business processes is a popular business strategy that can improve business efficiency. It refers to the process of using third-party service providers to perform certain functions. In the past, outsourcing services were a reserve for large, multinational corporations. In the modern landscape, businesses of all sizes can enjoy the benefits of outsourcing.
In many cases, outsourcing is not only a business optimization strategy but a necessity. It’s often the only feasible way to scale a business, manage operations, or launch a product. When functions are outsourced to the right team, a company can enhance its efficiency and realize several compelling benefits.
Helps a Company Focus on Core Processes
The most significant reason why a business should outsource is to free up its time and resources for crucial processes. A business owner can spend time doing what they’re good at while everything else is taken care of by experts.
If a company is selling digital products, the focus should be on closing sales, not enhancing the site’s security features. The issues of site security can be outsourced to Managed IT Support providers.
One thing that slows business down is entrepreneurs thinking that they can do everything by themselves. Drop this mentality and see your business grow. If you’re not good at managing finances or performing human resource tasks, outsource them.
Gives a Business Access to a Larger Talent Pool
Hiring an employee for specific functions, like payments and finance, limits the talent a business can get. In most cases, this approach requires a company to compromise. With outsourcing, a company gets access to an unlimited pool of talent from all over the world. It, therefore, makes more sense to expand your search when looking for outsourcing services.
Outsourcers have access to a big pool of skills and tools that you may need now or later. They can quickly solve any arising problem for which you don’t have the right skill set. In-house employees don’t provide this kind of flexibility.
Reduced Overhead Expenses and Labour Costs
It's expensive to hire and train staff, especially where short projects are concerned. Temporary staff also rarely produce quality work as per the expectations of a company. Teaching processes and workflow to employees may sometimes entail investing in their education to enhance their business skills.
Outsourcing allows your business to convert fixed labor costs into variable costs. This means that the only expenses it incurs are for the consumed services. There's, therefore, more staffing flexibility that doesn't exist with in-house employees.
Outsourcers are also responsible for all licenses and accreditations their work requires. They stay up-to-date with industry changes and trends while constantly developing their skills to enable them to work smarter.
Employee turnover is risky and costly. When a staff member quits, all the money used in training and hiring goes with them. Turnover can disrupt operations and cause costly problems.
Outsourcing provides consistency and efficiency for your business. You don't have to worry about the interruption of operations or financial risks.
Outsourcing business functions is not always an easy task but is worth it in the long-run. It improves business efficiency by allowing you to focus on the most crucial aspects of business, like nurturing leads and closing deals.
Some outsourcing tasks may be occasional, but they provide a greater financial advantage than hiring temporary staff. If your business has been affected by high staff turnover, consider outsourcing some of the functions.
When it comes to payment, you don’t want there to be any awkwardness. The more you can do to improve your invoicing process the better. Whether your company works with individual clients or other businesses, ideally you want to streamline the invoicing process and make it as clear and easy for everyone involved. The smartest way to do this is by investing in invoicing software or apps, and they will take care of a lot of the work for you. Once you start to scale your business, you can also outsource your invoice processing. For now, here are ten smart ways to improve your invoicing process.
Invest in invoicing software
Consider investing in the best invoicing software for small businesses. These will all include automated features making it a lot easier for you to bill your clients and have them pay on time. You’ll also have a record on the cloud of all the billing information automatically. Using invoicing software or apps is also much more secure for both parties and will give your clients confidence. For small businesses, it’s much easier to let technology take care of this one.
Open a business account
What you can do, however, is open a business account. Whether you use an app or take email invoices, you should use a business account for all transactions. It’s much safer to keep your personal and company assets separate, and this will protect you legally as well. A business account will also give you more credibility and make a better impression on your clients.
Build a good relationship with clients
Whether you’re dealing with B2B invoicing or providing a service to individuals you need to build a good relationship with your clients. Mutual trust is vital and you need to treat your clients with respect and professionalism at all times. This isn’t a backup for a signed agreement, however, but the better your client relationship is, the more likely the invoicing process will go smoothly.
Write effective terms
In order to successfully invoice a customer, you need to learn how to write invoice terms. Invoicing software will have features that will help you do this, but you need to come to an agreement and ensure your client has understood. Ideally, you should clearly outline any hidden charges such as late payment or cancellation fees. Be sure that your client has agreed on your rate, and whether this is to be paid hourly, daily, or weekly, etc, and clearly define any deadlines.
Invoice at the right time
Believe it or not, some business experts say there is a best time to invoice clients. It can depend on the type of service your business offers, however. If you offer a quote before the work starts this encourages your client to trust you, but you could end up underestimating costs. Some companies invoice at each milestone in more long-term projects. It’s probably better to invoice at the beginning of the week to get them paid on time, or at the end of the month to help your client keep track of payments.
Share data with clients on the cloud
You should try to keep your clients in the loop especially if you’re offering more long-term services or projects. If you need to share any files or information you can try using project management or freelancing apps. Here are some of the best apps to share files securely for small businesses. If you use the cloud, you can grant access to whoever you like at any time from anywhere.
Almost all decent invoicing software will allow you to automate reminders. This is especially important if you’re dealing with several clients. You might even forget about the deadline for payments and clients commonly do. Set up automated reminders on your invoicing software as soon as you agree on the terms. You can then choose a date further in the future for the reminders to go out automatically.
Late payment charges
There are many reasons why you should charge late payment fees. It’s your livelihood at the end of the day and you don’t want to lose profits. Charging late payment fees or cancellation fees will motivate your clients to pay you on time. You need to be careful here to clearly point out that they will be charged for late payments. As long as you are transparent about all prices and possible extra fees from the beginning, the customer will more likely be happy. Even if they do complain about late payment charges, you will have written records of your exchange to back it up.
Multiple payment options
You could consider offering multiple payment options. This might be advantageous if you run an eCommerce, for instance. Multiple payment gateways allow shoppers to use their favorite payment method, whether it be credit card, Paypal, or ACH payments from their smartphone. If you have the means to do this, it could improve the customer experience on your website. Offering multiple payment options also makes your business appear more legitimate and creates trust in consumers.
Outsource invoice processing
There are several reasons to outsource invoice processing. You might have started out managing your own payments and finances but now you want to scale your business. The more your business grows, the more clients you will have, and this can only mean more invoices. If you outsource to invoice processing services they’ll have the resources and the capacity to cope with this rise in demand.
Outsourcing also saves you time and money. You will save on the overheads, salary, sick pay, and all the other costs of hiring an in-house team. You’ll also be able to increase productivity and spend more time focusing on growing your business.
If you improve your invoicing process, you’ll develop a better relationship with clients creating good word of mouth. The more quickly and efficiently you do things the better. Open a business account and let the latest in invoicing tools and technology do the work for you.
During the coronavirus pandemic, unemployment rates have skyrocketed everywhere you look. In the United Kingdom, the unemployment rate has gone up to 4.8 percent. Nearly 250,000 people have lost their jobs since June of this year. That is the largest unemployment increase in a three-month period since 2009.
The same thing can be said with the United States in terms of unemployment. Rates are the highest they have been in a long time. According to the United States’ Bureau of Labor and Statistics, U.S unemployment currently sits at 6.9 percent. Before 2020, the last time the states’ rate of unemployment was this high was November of 2013.
With all that being said, it may be harder to find a job at this current point in time than it has been in recent memory. But in the same breath, it is worth mentioning that you should not just take any old job that you come across.
Yes, if you need the money right then and now, that is not a bad route to go. But if that is not the case, you should take some time in deciding the route you want to go in. Here a few things you should consider when concluding on whether or not a job is a good fit.
What is the commute like
Commuting to work every morning can be a pain. So when considering whether or not a job is right for you, make sure you have a good idea of how long the commute is. The commute to a company offering you a position should not be the biggest of worries, but it would be pretty inconvenient to take two hours to drive into work and two hours to drive home.
Is the company you are working for well managed
This is essential when finding the right job. If you work for a company that is professionally handled, organized life can be a lot easier.
No one wants to work for a disheveled boss with a nasty personality. It could make waking up every day that much harder. So when picking an occupation, look at the company as a whole. Ask questions about employee benefits, what the chain of command at the company/organization is, and how communicating is effectively done at that given job.
Do you like the work you are doing
This might be the most important of them all. Making sure you like what you do day in and day out is so important. You do not want to show up to work dreading the next eight hours of your life. Try and find an occupation that is engaging and keeps you entertained: even if that means there is a little more stress on your plate.
That is a little easier said than done, but do your best! You know yourself enough to say whether or not you would be a good fit working in a restaurant, office building, gym, et cetera. Being bored can be a lot worse than being busy, so try and find work that will make you excited to head in and earn that paycheck.
Starting your new business is a journey that will take you through many ups and downs. That said, it is exciting and one which is extremely rewarding. Plus, many people say working for themselves is the best thing they have ever done. When starting your business, there are many things to consider: branding, finances to websites, and funding. Below is an overview of a few things you should consider when starting your own business.
Creating your website
Will you be making your website yourself or hire a professional to make one for you? Depending on your requirements, a website will help bring in new customers to your business and allow you to appeal to them in a different way. Before starting your website, make sure you put a plan together of what you will need on it and the type of website it will be, whether eCommerce, or a brochure-like site.
When running your business, it is important to stay on top of your finances. Using an account package, you will be able to track how you are doing instantly through a click of a button. Not only that, but you will also be able to send invoices and keep an eye on your expenses. By using digital accounting, you can easily allow your accountant access to your books without having to visit them in person. This will enable them to log in and see how you are performing without leaving their office to meet you; it can all be done over a phone call.
How will you brand yourself?
Logos, brand colors, and marketing materials should all be thought about before launching your company. Your logo is important, as everyone will see first and give them the first impression of your business. Done cheaply, it can be detrimental to your brand. Brand colors can portray a lot about you; if you are a luxury brand, you may want more gold’s and silvers used instead of bright funky colors. By hiring a graphic designer, they can help you with all of this.
Testing your idea in the real world
If your idea is completely new, how do you know it will work? Before investing heavily in your idea, it’s worth creating some prototypes and seeing how people respond to it. This is a great way to get actual feedback and to get other people’s opinions. Take note of what people are saying is you can use this to develop your idea and make it even better.
Will you need investment?
Will your business plan require you to need significant investment, or can you gradually grow your business? If you need investment, have you considered how you are going to raise funds? Make sure you do your research and put together a solid business plan to explain each step of your journey and how the money will be spent. Angel investors, bank loans, competitions, friends, and family, there are many ways for you to pitch and bring in some funding for your idea.
We’re all constantly being told that Business-2-Business (B2B) marketing is changing and that we need new marketing strategies to cope with this. We’re being told that the modern buyer doesn’t respond well to the B2B sales funnels of old and their buying habits are so mysterious you’re going to need a crystal ball or psychic octopus to continue to operate in the field. The good people over at American Image Displays have the only strategy you'll need.
The focus of doing business, regardless of the stature of your company is all about getting more. They say you need more clients, more money, and more everything! And this means that there comes a point where we just can feel overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of it all. When it comes to working smarter in the business world, we've got to find ways to get ourselves out there but when we are a small company or it's just us, we can struggle to keep every plate spinning. With this in mind, what are the best approaches to guarantee that your small business can reach these outer limits?
Outsourcing (It Isn’t As Expensive as You Think)
Whether it’s an SEO expert or someone to help you revise your website copy, outsourcing is something that every business, big or small, is taking advantage of. When you start to outsource, you can begin to see the wood for the trees. When we do too much, we can let certain components fall by the wayside. By outsourcing things that we find difficult, especially in the marketing world, it will force us to focus on things that we can do better. When it comes to search engine optimisation because it is such an evolving component of marketing, it can be a struggle to keep on top of the latest rules when it comes to Google's algorithm. But this is where having someone who dedicates their livelihood to this will make it far easier for you.
Work With Other Companies
Extending the olive branch is a fantastic way to go about doing business. When you start to work with other companies, by either having guest bloggers or even vendors, when you start to work with businesses in industries that complement yours but also share a target audience, you aren't treading on each other's toes. You can set up a referral program or offer package deals, and it's these things that don't just help you expand your reach but it makes you reputable by association.
When you start to work with other companies networking becomes a well-oiled machine as part of your business strategy. Every meeting is the potential to network, and when you start to reach out and let them know that your business is open and what you can do for them this can be as effective as a social media post. But when you are networking, it's important to remember that there is an etiquette to it. Don't be obnoxious. When you start to build a business, it's very easy to get blindsided by the money and you start to do everybody as potential profit. It's far better to be a business leader who is marketing to help others rather than yourself.
Simple, but incredibly effective. These three components can expand your business reach in insurmountable ways. Marketing can be perceived as a very selfish endeavour to promote their own efforts. But by reaching out to others and asking for help, you are naturally beginning to network in a very organic way. This means that you will have a good reputation. And as we all know, your reputation can precede you.
All business owners want to score more clients, but the route to achieving that goal isn’t always clear. Sometimes you need to think outside of the box if you want to succeed, but usually, you just need to follow a set of straightforward ideas.
With that in mind, there are some tips and tricks below that should assist you in identifying, contacting, and winning those new clients. Regardless of your business's nature and what you do to turn a profit, the same rules should apply. Just tailor this guidance for your industry, and you should have no issues.
Research new marketplaces
So, you sell products or services to customers and clients in a few specific industries. Now is the time to look at those products or services and work out whether there are other marketplaces for them.
Perhaps you sell products in a certain market that could also be useful for companies in the automotive industry or something similar? You might have to redesign your packaging for companies in that marketplace, but it’s worth the cost if you open your business up to thousands of new potential clients.
All companies have to expand and grow if they want to succeed in the thriving business world, and research is the key to effective expansion. So, get started as soon as possible!
Give free gifts to potential clients
When you identify a list of potential clients who should be interested in your products or services, it's vital you work hard to get their attention. While you can cold call or send letters or emails, sometimes it’s better to try something different.
Sending free samples or gifts to your potential clients should help to create the best first impression. You could also offer to turn up at their business premises and demonstrate how your products or services could save their firm time and money.
Everyone loves getting something for free, and potential clients who receive gifts are far more likely to listen to your pitch. Food for thought?
Know your stuff!
The most important thing you need to consider when looking for new clients is your ability to answer questions with the best possible answers. Clients will always want to discuss your products or services, and you need to know your stuff!
It's all well and good to identify a list of potential clients and send gifts, and you might have a great business, but if you can't explain the virtues of giving you money, it's probably not going to happen. You need an effective sales pitch, and you need to practice it a LOT.
There are lots of articles online that will help you to write a decent sales pitch, and you can always practice it with members of your team before heading out and pitching to clients.
Now you have a better idea about the things you need to do to score more clients for your business this winter, it’s time to set the wheels in motion. Develop your strategy, conduct your research, and make the investment of time and money. If you pay attention to the tips from this post, there’s a reasonable chance you’ll avoid any mishaps. Good luck!
Most entrepreneurs wish they were better at managing their time. There are only eight hours in a standard work day, but it feels like you have 20 hours worth of tasks to do every day. Entrepreneur Europe has an idea about how to manage that time of yours..
People who hate their jobs tend to move on and look for something else. Some even change their careers when they’re feeling unfulfilled by work.
But what do you do if you love your career, but need a new challenge? The good news is that there are a lot of ways you can turn things around and inject some excitement into your job.
Here is some useful advice for taking on a new challenge, without changing your career.
Move to a new location
f you’re starting to outgrow your current workplace, moving to a new location could help keep things fresh for you. A change in location not only helps you realise new career opportunities but opportunities for your personal life too. Perhaps you want to move closer to home to be with family, or even move to an exciting new city or country?
Wherever you decide to relocate, you’re going to need to get on the job hunt. Check out cmr.com.au for some exciting opportunities that could invigorate your career. A change of scenery brings all kinds of changes, and could be just what you need to shake things up.
Start chasing that promotion
Perhaps a part of your frustration comes from outgrowing your role? When your job starts becoming routine and easy, it could be a sign that you’re ready for more. Start preparing for a promotion so that you’re ready to go for it when the opportunities come your way.
Volunteer your time and skills to help others
If you’ve always felt like you could do more with your skills and expertise, why not use what you have to do some good for others? If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us anything, tit’s that community values are more important than ever. There are several ways you can use your skills to help others, including mentoring, pro bono work and volunteering to help charities and good causes. This can bring a lot of fulfilment to your role, and could even help you discover new opportunities that could help you choose a different path for your career.
Take on a side hustle
Side hustles are a great way to develop other interests that you have, without sacrificing your career. There are inspiring stories of people who’ve embarked on incredible new ventures, from starting fitness businesses to their own pizza brand! It’s possible to be passionate about more than one thing at a time, so why not give it a try so that you can get more out of your career.
If you’re dissatisfied with your current situation, then it’s time to make a change. Even if you love your career, it doesn’t mean you have to stay exactly where you are - there are ways you can develop and grow tbring exciting change to both your career and your life outside work. There are all kinds of challenges out there waiting for you, so which one will you take on first?
When lockdown started in March, workers across the UK packed up their office equipment and set up work stations in their own homes. Bedrooms, kitchen counter-tops and dining tables became the new way of working for millions of people. According to the ONS, 30% of adults in the UK were exclusively working from home at the start of July. BBC News has the info...
Financial uncertainty has prompted many to start thinking about a Plan B to help supplement their existing income, while others have spent lockdown pondering whether the career they thought they wanted is right for their long-term future. Entrepreneur Europe caught up with one CEO to find out how she runs her business in 3 hours at night!
As a business owner, staff health and safety should always be at the top of your agenda. This year businesses have had to take plenty of extra precautions due to COVID-19. Regardless, COVID is not the only health and safety issue in the workplace. To help you to improve employee health and safety, try out these five apps and ideas.
1. Tap Into Safety
Tap Into Safety is an app that provides tips about mental health and safety in the workplace. There is a library of safety training content that can be applied across various industries. The Tap Into Safety Program also offers plenty of safety courses which apply to different workplace scenarios. The app was created to help staff to reduce injuries, whether physical or psychological. The program includes a ‘COVID-19 mental health recovery package,’ which may come in handy for many companies.
The ergonomics application offers advice on how to set up staff workstations ergonomically. The app also provides content on taking breaks and performing daily stretching exercises. Studies suggest that stretching breaks can boost staff productivity, as well as prevent injuries from sitting down. The ergonomics app provides detailed guidelines on each stretch, along with a countdown timer. As well as using this app it’s vital to provide all of your staff with ergonomic chairs and keyboards.
3. Emergency First Aid Training
To keep everyone safe at work, it can be useful to provide employees with an Emergency First Aid At Work Course. No matter which industry you are in, you never know when first aid training might be crucial. When you invest in training for your staff, it’s easier to create a safer workplace. Whether it’s first aid training, mental health training, or general health and safety, ensure that you have all bases covered.
4. Health care plans
Offering your staff a healthcare plan is a great way to prioritize health at your company. With a solid healthcare plan, you’ll improve your staff's health and boost productivity along the way. Health care plans can help to improve staff wellbeing and reduce employee absenteeism. It’s also a great way to boost your company culture and reduce your turnover rates.
As an entrepreneur you’ll have so much to think about, from your digital content to your ROI. Health and safety is such an important part of your day to day and so it’s essential to improve these systems as much as possible.
5. Regular Risk Assessments
To protect employee health, it’s advisable to perform risk assessments on a regular basis. Risk assessments involve determining potentially unsafe practices and areas, and putting solutions in place. With your risk assessment data, your business can take further safety precautions and necessary. A risk assessment generally involves:
For more information about Health Application development, Techexactly.com recently created an extremely helpful 'Health Application Development Guide' which talks about the different types, features and challenges.
Redesigning your office is an excellent idea for many reasons. By improving your office, you can boost staff morale and improve the efficiency of your operations. You can also seek to make eco-friendly adjustments and create a more professional look. When it comes to redesigning your office, these five applications can support your planning.
The RoomSketcher application is an easy to use floor plan and design app. Using RoomSketcher, you can make 3D floor plans and design the ideal layout for your office space. You can virtually decorate with the app so you can get your ideas together before you implement them for real. A basic RoomSketcher plan is free, while extra features can be accessed on the paid version.
2. Planner 5D
With the Planner 5D app, you can design the floor plan of your office, including any type of interior layout. You can use either imperial or metric measurements, and design realistic images to support your plans. There are plenty of options with the Planner 5D app, including:
3. Magic Plan
Magic Plan is a fantastic tool for redesigning your office space. The application allows you to create beautiful diagrams in a number of minutes. It’s simple to use, just aim your device, snap your photos and get the floor plan and dimensions you need. Magic Plan comes with over 1,000 objects to incorporate as part of your design, including stairwells and furniture. Further features of Magic Plan include:
Want to improve the color schemes and decor in your office? Looking for ideas to get inspired? Pinterest is an excellent place for interior design photography, and there are plenty of office design examples here too. Whether it’s type of furniture, artwork, use of space, or color, Pinterest has got plenty to get inspired. When you’re lacking creativity and ideas, Pinterest is the place to be!
SmartDraw allows you to create floor plans, no matter which type of business you are. There are many pre-designed templates to choose from to speed things up. Features of SmartDraw include:
Business relocations can occur for a wide range of reasons. Perhaps you're upsizing to a bigger store. Maybe you're downsizing in response to COVID-19 and an increased reliance on remote working. Or it might be that you're starting a whole new life in a new city or country. Whatever the reasons, it's imperative that the transition runs. Otherwise, the business dream could turn into a nightmare.
You've probably never completed this assignment before, which is why it's easy to forget key features. Here are five that you must not ignore,
#1. You Don't Have To Replace All Items
When making a fresh beginning, there is a temptation to start over. However, it would be a little counterproductive to spend money needlessly. After all, the whole purpose of the relocation is to boost your bottom line. Even when dealing with huge items, expert machine movers can transfer equipment to new locations. The moving costs are a fraction of replacing the items. Moreover, any employees following your business to the new setting will be familiar with the products too.
It also removes fears of delayed deliveries, allowing you to maintain productivity throughout.
#2. You Can Still Leverage Success From The Old Location
In addition to carrying over physical items from the old venue, you can look to leverage online success from the previous chapter. Rather than designing a brand new website, editing existing pages is quicker, cheaper, and more effective. Service pages, blog posts, and site features are already indexed for SEO. So, adding the new geographic keywords should give you far quicker results. The fact you can make good use of your testimonials and reviews is a bonus.
#3. You Have To Create Positive Surroundings
After moving into the new business premises, you will have to accept that it can take time to achieve the perfect surroundings. However, creating a positive vibe is an immediate priority. From improving the design of your office to creating a reception area that sets the right tone, you will see a big impact. It can influence productivity and employee-client interactions. If you want the next chapter of your business journey to start on the right foot, you must not ignore this.
Furthermore, you should stamp out any source of wasted capital.
#4. You Only Have To Replace A Percentage Of The Workforce
Employees will continue to provide the backbone of your business in this new era. Once again, you don't have to forget everything that went before. Depending on the distances involved, it may be convenient for staff members to follow you to the new setting. Even if this isn't possible, many jobs from admin to customer care can be completed remotely. Managing a remote team takes some getting used to, but can transform the future of the company.
#5. You Have To Be Organized
Good organizational skills are essential at all stages of the business journey. Still, the need to maintain control is even greater at this time. Aside from updating your website and arranging movers, you'll want to find printers for new business cards and letterheads. Likewise, all utilities, including issues like internet and data management should be done in advance. Otherwise, increased stress levels could lead to very serious consequences.
You've got this, but only if you put the right preparations in place. Now is the time to do it.
If you have a small business, making sure you can sell your product is key if you’re going to continue growing your business and trying to get a piece of the market share. Below, you’ll find some pointers that can help your business to start selling more - and fast.
1. Become More Active On Social Media
Start by getting more active on social media if you don’t currently have a social media plan. Choose a platform where you’ll find your target audience and work on building a page. This page should have your information, the same branding as your site, and be updated regularly. Remember, it’s not just about selling here, it’s about being social! Get involved in discussions, provide advice, and try to give value to people. It may take time to get some followers, but you can also pay for ads to see if you can build a following faster that way. Depending on your audience, this can be a lucrative and mostly free way to market your business.
2. Know Exactly Who You’re Targeting
You can't really focus on getting more sales if you don’t know who you’re trying to sell to. You can’t just hope that anybody interested in your product will buy it. You should have an idea of the age of your audience, as well as their hobbies, family status, job, income, and other relevant things. Make sure you sit down and come up with some consumer profiles so you know who you’re talking to and get an idea of what they will respond to.
3. Use SoftwareThere are various pieces of software that could help you to sell more. Salesforce is a helpful piece of kit, but many business owners get put off, as they don’t want to take their foot off the pedal and focus on something else when they want to grow their business. This is why teams like Magicforce exist. They can help you to implement this software so you can make more sales without taking your focus away from what you’re good at.
4. Try A Rebrand
Perhaps your brand isn't really working for you in the way it should be. If you didn’t consider your audience beforehand, then it could be that you haven’t branded your business in quite the right way. A rebrand can be time consuming and expensive, so you should make sure this is definitely the right decision before going ahead. It’s not something you should take lightly, but if it’s the right decision, it can make a huge difference.
5. Write Better Copy
Is your copy working as hard for you as it should be? Descriptive, enticing copy is a must if you’re going to sell products. If you can’t write it, find somebody who can.
6. Take Better Pictures
Your pictures need to be accurate but high quality and show your product in the best possible light. Again, you may need to find someone for this.
7. Set A Solid, Realistic Sales Goal
If you don’t have a solid, realistic sales goal, then what are you even aiming for? Come up with one that motivates you!
If you’re a business owner organising an office relocation, you’ll more than likely want a smooth-running experience without any difficulties. Whether this means downsizing or upsizing your office, it’s vital to prepare and communicate with others to avoid any unwanted stress and disruption to the process. It may initially seem like a challenging task, but by taking proactive steps, you’ll be able to have a successful office move all while saving money. Here are six money-saving tips that every business owner should consider when moving offices.
Plan Ahead of Time
Planning an office move shouldn’t be a last minute decision. To make sure you’re getting the best deal, you should ideally plan your move six months ahead of time. This will also give you time to set a realistic budget and to outline out all of the necessary expenses involved with the move.
Find a Reliable Moving Company
Once you’ve planned out all the logistics, it’s time to find a reliable moving company who can make your office relocation happen, such as with Two Men And A Truck. To get the best value for money, make sure to research what each company can offer in terms of your needs, always stay within your set budget, and don’t be afraid to negotiate pricing with service providers.
Avoid Moving in Summer
Most companies tend to relocate offices in the spring and summer. However, demand increases during these seasons, meaning prices for moving services will also rise. Likewise, real estate also begins to rise in price during the warmer months. To save on costs, consider relocating your office during autumn, winter, or early spring.
To prevent any fees and confusion with others, ensure to review your commercial property lease. Leaving early could cost you your deposit, and you could be liable for any damage to the property if it were to occur during your move. Once you have a confirmed moving date, you’ll need to give official notice to any internal and external parties about your upcoming office move, and create a list of people that you will need to send your new office address to, such as banks, insurance companies, and your internet service provider.
Start decluttering items that your office doesn't use as soon as possible. You can do this by making an inventory list to determine what you need and what can be disposed of or donated to a registered charity - you may even be eligible to get a tax-write off. Think old phones, printers, office supplies, or even office furniture that’s in need of a new home. Making this checklist and disposing of unwanted items in the property can also help you to avoid any fines. If you’re concerned about your valuable assets, you may want to consider insuring these items to financially protect yourself from any unforeseen accidents during the big move.
Reduce Packaging Costs
To save on your packaging costs, get the whole team to chip in with DIY packaging or consider purchasing used packing supplies and boxes. While this can be perceived as a team-building exercise, it’s only fair to reward your employees for their efforts afterwards!
When people think of Artificial Intelligence (AI), they tend to think of movies where AI goes wrong and threatens the universe. Thankfully, the reality is far more boring.
AI is a range of systems that can perform tasks that generally rely on human intelligence to complete. This can include things like analysis and problem-solving.
Marketers are beginning to use AI for a range of marketing tasks. From automating PPC campaigns to curating content and running chatbots and online chatroom software to engage customers.
Amazon is one of the leaders in utilizing AI and use it for a number of things, including product recommendations.
Some companies are using AI to continuously analyse their IT network and identify traffic that deviates from normal activity. When abnormal or suspicious activity if identified, it can then work to protect the network.
Cybersecurity is a priority for organizations of all sizes and a successful attack can be devastating both in terms of reputation and financially.
HR and recruitment can be a very labour intensive process. With unemployment rising in the wake of COVID-19, there are hundreds, even thousands of applicants for every job.
AI automation can be used to find and analyse candidate applications.
Predicting changing market conditions is extremely difficult. The sheer amount of information that needs to be processed is impossible for a human to do. Instead, large investment firms and hedge funds use AI to analyze and predict the market.
Machine learning is being adopted in the healthcare sector. With it, doctors can detect if a patient with an existing condition is deteriorating and intervene before they need hospital care.
The pace of machine learning in healthcare is also leading to the earlier detection of diseases such as cancer and diabetes. The sooner a condition is diagnosed, the more successful the treatment methods can be. This saves lives and saves money.
Software Vulnerability Testing
Software needs to be airtight when it comes to security. Any vulnerability can make it susceptible to attack. Companies are using AI models to detect vulnerabilities and predict attacks.
Using AI to identify negative behaviours is a controversial use of the technology, but nevertheless, some companies are finding it invaluable. It is used to identify bad behaviour within the workforce, it can even predict if someone is unhappy in their job and is thinking of leaving.
Today’s financial transactions take place online. The Fintech sector is incorporating AI into its products in order to automate things such as expense reporting, bookkeeping and data entry.
Businesses have barely scratched the surface when it comes to implementing AI. The sheer number of potential uses for it is difficult to imagine. As technology improves and the cost reduces, more and more industries are going to start using AI in many areas of their business.
As a business owner, it’s crucial to retain existing clients, but it’s also beneficial to look for ways to attract new customers. If you’re looking to secure new commercial contracts or reach out to new sectors, here are some effective strategies to try.
Conducting business with other companies is very different to offering products and services to consumers, and your marketing strategy should reflect this. Outline your key objectives and tailor your campaigns to reach the target market. Think about the kinds of clients you want to attract, the way you want to sell your brand and the types of products and services you’re offering. Conduct market research and utilise feedback. Up-sell your USP and highlight the value your business offers to others. Use examples and case studies to support claims about specific products and make your marketing more impactful. For ponds and water features, for example, don’t just speak about the benefits of butyl tape. Provide prospective clients with images of finished articles, testimonials from previous clients and facts and figures that back up quality, durability and performance-related claims. For technological gadgets, send out prototypes and share video clips of the invention in action.
Creating the right first impression
First impressions count in business, and it’s estimated that you have around 7 seconds to set the right tone. When meeting clients or discussing potential deals, partnerships or orders, use your own experiences to ensure you get off on the right foot. Be punctual and professional, make the most of the time you have to sell your brand without being overly aggressive or persistent and encourage follow-up conversations.
Build on reviews and feedback
Reviews can be extremely valuable for businesses looking to improve customer service, attract new clients and build an excellent reputation. Use reviews you receive from commercial clients to make improvements and don’t be afraid to shout it from the rooftops if you have got brilliant feedback, which could help to persuade other businesses to choose you. Take both negative and positive feedback on board, address any concerns promptly and use reviews as a means of promoting the products and services you offer and separating your business from rivals that may be on the shortlist of clients you’re hoping to work with in the future.
Most of us feel more confident when buying from a company that has been recommended by others. This applies to customers visiting shops or using a website to buy products, as well as B2B clients. Referrals can be incredibly influential. If you have happy clients, encourage them to share their experiences and recommend you to other businesses they may already work with or contacts that might be interested in the products or services you offer.
Competition for new clients is fierce. As a business owner looking to secure new deals and impress new clients, it’s crucial to implement targeted ways to market and promote your brand, to utilise reviews and feedback to encourage referrals and to ensure you create the right first impression.
If you’re looking for new suppliers for your business but you don’t know where to begin then don’t worry, you have definitely come to the right place. Whether you’re looking for suppliers for your products or for essentials for your office, you need to ensure you’re finding businesses you can trust if you want to run your business efficiently. From helping you to produce high-quality products to ensuring you’re keeping your employees safe, the more you’re doing to find trustworthy suppliers the better. With that in mind, here are just some of the reasons you should consider finding reliable suppliers for your business:
You Can Have Confidence In Your Products
One of the best reasons to find reliable suppliers is that it will give you confidence in the products that you’re selling. Having high-quality products is what will set your apart from your competitors so if you’re choosing reliable suppliers that you can trust, you know that you’re going to be offering your customers the best possible products. For tips and tricks when it comes to finding suppliers you can trust, you can visit this site here.
You Can Ensure You’re Keeping Everyone Safe
If you know you’re working with suppliers that you can trust, you can be sure you’re keeping everyone within your business safe at the same time. Whether this means they’re using safe practices within their work or they’re creating products that are safe, your employees and customers safety should be your top priority. If you’re unsure whether or not they have safe practices, you can speak to your suppliers and ask to visit their premises. They will be able to reassure you that you’re working with a business you can trust, as well as give you an insight into what they do as a business and how they operate.
For more tips and tricks when it comes to keeping your employees safe, you can visit this site here.
You Can Build Strong Relationships
Building strong relationships as a business owner is incredibly important, especially when it comes to your suppliers. By choosing suppliers you can trust, you can be sure you’re building strong relationships with people that are going to help your business grow. Whether that’s someone who offers HVOF or someone who supplies hi-vis jackets, building relationships is essential.
You Can Save Money Where Possible
Finally, by working with reliable suppliers for your business, you can open up your business to saving money. Whether that means you’re saving money as a result of strong relationships or you’re saving money by making bulk orders, there is a lot of value in having strong relationships with reliable suppliers.
With lots of great reasons to find reliable suppliers for your business, you can be sure you’re doing the absolute best for your growth. What other benefits could it bring? Did we miss anything important off of the list? Let us know your thoughts and ideas in the comments section below.
For your business to thrive, your office space must be a hub of creativity and hard work. The problem is, it’s impossible to achieve greatness without the right environment! If you want productivity levels to soar, think about how you might improve the functionality and design of your office. In many cases, improving your office is rather a case of health and safety.
1. Consider lighting
According to a study in PR Newswire, ‘workers in daylit office environments reported an 84 percent drop in symptoms of eyestrain, headaches and blurred vision.’ The study concluded that improving natural light in an office environment resulted in improved productivity and wellness levels.
To improve your office environment, it’s advisable to optimize natural light as much as possible. Perhaps your office doesn’t get much sunlight during the day? In this case, daylight bulbs or full-spectrum daylight bulbs are a worthwhile investment. Daylight bulbs are designed to mimic natural night, while full-spectrum bulbs are often used to treat Seasonal Affective Disorder.
2. Create more space
The coronavirus pandemic means that social distancing is now a necessity. To improve your office design in a post-COVID world, you need to create more space. Of course, that’s easier said than done, but here are a few viable options!
Declutter to make room: Start by decluttering your office, get rid of any items you don’t need. Whether you sell things or donate them, you’d be surprised how much space you have after a clear out. When you are disposing of your items, ensure that you recycle as much as possible. With a little more floor space, you’ll be able to create more distance between your staff workstations.
Invest in a storage solution: Another option is to invest in a storage solution. There are plenty of storage containers you can hire at affordable prices. By using a storage solution, you’ll free up space on site, and you won’t need to get rid of anything.
3. Ergonomic seating
Modern office designs simply must involve ergonomic seating; it’s essential to keep your staff safe and healthy as they work. Ergonomic chairs support the spine and prevent injuries. While you’re at it, it’s also a good idea to purchase ergonomic keyboards. These keyboards help the user to place their hands in a natural position; this means less straining and less chance of typing related ailments.
4. Quality renovations
Working conditions have a direct impact on the productivity of your staff. Staff are far more likely to produce creative work in an attractive and comfortable environment. With this in mind, consider whether your office space is in need of a renovation? When you are choosing your contractors, it’s essential to choose a quality service. Many businesses prefer companies who prioritize sustainable building methods and materials. For a quality ceiling renovation, rockfon.co.uk have plenty of great options.
5. Consider color schemes
The colors that we are surrounded by influence our mood, emotions and energy levels. Due to this, it’s important to choose the right colors when designing an office space. For a few ideas to get you started, consider these options:
Blue: Blue is generally seen as an ‘intellectual’ color. It is often associated with communication, logic and trust. All of these associations make blue the perfect color for an office environment.
Yellow: Yellow represents positivity, creativity and energy. We need all of these things to create a productive office, (so get painting those walls yellow)!
6. Apps to support your design
Need a little help to get your design ideas flowing? Several apps can help you there!
Room Sketcher: RoomSketcher is a floor planning and design app, perfect for helping you plan out your office. Using this application, you can make 3D floor plans and virtually decorate your office. RoomSketcher is ideal if you want to try out a few design ideas before making any purchases.
Planner 5D: Planner 5D is another top floor plan tool, here you can create any type of interior layout you wish. Whether you want to create a 2D or 3D plan, planner 5D has the tools you need. It’s simple to create realistic images and play around with texture and lighting.
Hopefully, a few of these ideas will be easy to implement at your office. You might find that it takes a little time to redesign your office to adhere to COVID-19 restrictions. If your staff are still working from home, now is the perfect time to get those renovations sorted before they return!
Staff productivity levels should be a priority for all business owners. Sadly, the vast majority of companies continue to suffer from insufficient results in this key area of daily operations. Whether those lulls in production have been caused as a direct result of Covid-19 or existed long before the pandemic doesn't matter. Either way, it's vital that you stamp out those problems ASAP.
The first step to overcoming those problems is to identify the root causes. Here are some of the most common issues to consider, along with the easiest ways to battle them. The road to restored productivity starts here.
Inadequate Recruitment & Training
It's impossible to achieve the desired levels of productivity if you have failed to assemble a strong team. Therefore, successful recruitment drives should be the top item on your agenda. If you want employees to perform well, it's important to recognise the human elements too.
In truth, analysing the right personality traits is perhaps even more crucial than before as teams include remote workers. When employees don't have the attitude and drive to back up their skills, unlocking their full potential is impossible. Worse still, their lacklustre performances can spread to others.
Building a quality team that's built to perform is one thing. However, you must also ensure that staff members continue to grow and develop. Investing in the best staff training modules to learn new techniques or familiarise themselves with new software is key.
Inferior Tech Facilities
They say that a bad worker blames their tools. However, even the best employees will struggle to produce the goods if they aren't supported by the right equipment. From machinery to POS terminals, or office computers to vehicles, only the best will do.
If your employees blame the vehicle they use as an excuse for inefficiency, you should install GPS Tracking in the work vehicle to monitor the progress of their shift. GPS tracking is accurate and simple, providing you with real-time locations and movement detection.
It's not only about possessing the right assets and infrastructure, though. It's equally important to ensure that all facilities are maintained to optimal health and reliability. Visit https://www.concise.co.uk to learn about how managed IT can transform your approach. It's great news for the firm and its staff.
Aside from cutting out various tech-related disruptions, it aids the team's ability to stay on task. There's nothing worse than spending time trying to troubleshoot and correct issues. When those issues are handled in an automated manner, your team can focus solely on the tasks at hand.
Poor Teamwork & Collaboration
Teamwork makes the dream work. When individual success isn't met with collective triumphs, it will show. As an employer, it's your job to ensure that all team members are on the same page. Team building sessions and group activities are a great way to promote camaraderie.
Meanwhile, it's important to build a working environment that is conducive of good collaboration from all times. Whether it's in-house team meetings or video conferencing, short and sweet discussions are for the best. Moreover, tech features like team messaging Apps can serve you very well.
Perhaps most importantly, you must stamp out any potential issues, such as workplace bullying. Meanwhile, using the right tech to support collaboration is key. Cloud computing is one key feature. But the ability to track client interactions and let colleagues pick up the conversation is equally crucial.
As well as good working relations with colleagues, workers deserve a positive employer-employee bond. So, developing your leadership skills through improved body language and communication is a must. If you cannot express messages well, you can't expect teams to perform.
The reality of the situation is that you are unlikely to handle many of the interactions personally. Supporting yourself with great team leaders that can maintain productivity in tough situations will make life a whole lot easier. Be sure to give them the authority needed to complete their work too.
When supported by regular reporting and analysis, productivity should remain at the highest level. And when it does drop below the desired levels, you'll be in a position to spot and rectify the situation at the earliest stage. In truth, that preparation is as significant as taking the right precautions.
As already mentioned, human responsibilities are a crucial ingredient in the recipe for success. If employees are worried about any aspect of their health and safety, it'll affect their work ethic. So, for the sake of productivity and profitability, as well as human care, you must get this right.
Conducting a full and thorough risk assessment of workspaces is vital. Check out https://www.thsp.co.uk to learn more. Meanwhile, security systems and emergency protocols should be in place too. Even when they aren't needed, their presence can make a significant difference.
In today's climate, safety and security aren't limited to the physical world. All data and cybersecurity features must satisfy the latest demands. After all, almost half of all recorded attacks target SMEs. You cannot afford to let your employees fall victim.
Motivation is a very powerful tool in business. Frankly, you'd be very naive to think that employees will work to their full capacity without an incentive. Engaging work and achieving greatness for the company do have a positive impact. However, personal incentives will always be top of the agenda.
The most obvious incentives are financially inspired. Creating a clear path to promotion will spur ambitious workers to want and achieve more. Additional steps may include bonuses or sales commissions. Likewise, perks relating to travel or lifestyle elements can have a big impact on the mood.
If you can inspire staff members to actively want to work harder, they will. Better still, hard work is contagious and will inspire colleagues to follow in their footsteps. The benefits for the entire team and, therefore, your bottom line cannot be ignored.
The Final Word
A hardworking team won't guarantee business success, but it'll certainly give you a better shot at success. So, taking the necessary steps to cut out the sources of poor productivity levels is something that all employers should want to do.
Whether you're working from home or commercial spaces, paying attention to this part of the kob should pave the way to productivity. What more could any entrepreneur ask for?
Author - Chris
Author, Editor, Creator of this website.