writing business plans

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…

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…

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…

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…

Why startups fail – 5 Key Reasons for failure and how to overcome them

Why startups fail – 5 Key Reasons for failure and how to overcome them

Startup failure rates are enough to put any budding entrepreneur off – in the UK it is estimated that 2 in 3 businesses fail in the first 3 years and from the Department of Trade and Industry figures, stats show that 70% of businesses fail in the first 10 years!…

How to Startup a Business – 5 Practical Tips for Success

How to Startup a Business – 5 Practical Tips for Success

Advice on how to start up a business has been written about almost every day and the advice follows the usual steps. 1. Come up with the business idea 2. Research the market for the product or service 3. Write your business plan along with your forecasts for the numbers…

How to evaluate Project Risk

How to evaluate Project Risk

Calculating returns on project forecasts is an easier task than calculating the project risks. There are numerous methods for doing this, some very technical and some intuitive. There’s enough written about the technical methods of evaluating risks, so I won’t go into it. Suffice to say, read any business text…

3 Key Business Goals to set for your business

3 Key Business Goals to set for your business

Starting a New Year, every business, well maybe almost everyone, will set goals for the new year. Planning and setting business goals for most is an annual event and sometimes it’s called a budget! However, I want to recommend a different course in setting your key business goals. It maybe…