business finance

Competitive Advantage – how to gain it !

Competitive Advantage – how to gain it !

The key factor in maintaining long-term viability for any business is having a competitive advantage. Probably the best book written on the subject is ‘Competitive Advantage – Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance’ by Michael Porter in 1985. Essentially it boils down to 2 factors – in summary you win by…

Early warning signs of business failure

Early warning signs of business failure

Entrepreneurs and managers need to have their finger on the pulse of the business and the sure sign of impending disaster is running out of cash! Running out of cash is always a symptom of bigger problems within the business, which have to be put right. There are early warning…

Growing your business – 3 Key Tips

Growing your business – 3 Key Tips

There comes a point when entrepreneurs/founders want to expand and grow their business, be it adding a new service/product, opening a new location or adding staff to grow existing services. I would recommend 3 key tips for businesses to consider before embarking on a growth phase. 1. Planning for growth…

KPIs’ for Business – don’t lose sight of the wood for the trees!

KPIs’ for Business – don’t lose sight of the wood for the trees!

I have written before on tips to set up KPIs’ and what the critical KPIs’ maybe. However, something a colleague mentioned recently had a familiar resonance to it. He said he had worked in an organisation which circulated 141 key performance indicators’ and no one bothered to look at them! It’s important…

Keeping an eye on the figures – 3 Key Tips

Keeping an eye on the figures – 3 Key Tips

Managing a business isn’t easy and if you don’t know anything about finance, it’s a sure-fire way of running into trouble. The first thing any entrepreneur or manager has to learn is how to understand some basic finances. Once you learn the basics, it is critical to add to your…

3 Key Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs

3 Key Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs

I have been fortunate to meet several entrepreneurs in my career. However meeting three successful ones recently and discussing how they developed their respective businesses, made me conclude that they have similar traits that make them successful. Here are my conclusions on the 3 key traits it takes to be a…

Funding pain remains for startups and SMEs’

Funding pain remains for startups and SMEs’

Raising funding for startups and small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) or even large projects is still a difficult and painful process out there. I had a long discussion with an experienced consultant recently who works with tech startups and his prognosis for the smaller end of fund-raising circa £250,000 was…

Making your Business tax efficient

Making your Business tax efficient

One of the first things entrepreneurs get advised is to make their business tax efficient. It is a minefield for businesses and hiring a good tax adviser or accountant is paramount but here are some tips that help in ensuring that your business is tax efficient. 1.  Difference between tax avoidance…

ROCE and when to use it – return on capital employed

ROCE and when to use it – return on capital employed

What is it? ROCE measures a company’e profitability and it’s efficiency in using it’s capital, both shareholders’ funds and borrowings. The higher the ROCE (return on capital employed), the better the performance. This is why investors like the ratio and investment analysts use it. ROCE should not be confused with…

How to deal with failure in Business – 5 Key Tips

How to deal with failure in Business – 5 Key Tips

We all make mistakes. It’s a fact of life. The key to success is how we deal with failure and overcome the negatives. Whether it’s a business startup or your business hitting a recession, failure can be painful. In business, failure can be even more difficult to deal with. Or…