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Business coaching

Business Lessons From the Festive Season

Business might be the furthest thing from your mind at this time of year, but as we all gather... read more

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Online marketing

Validate your crazy business ideas for under $100

Am I crazy or creative? Everyone has thought of a great idea for a product/service, and you're... read more

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Wendy Huang Full Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
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Business coaching

Protect Your Focus or Face the Consequences

“I am amazed at the number of business owners who are saying that they are too busy –‘doing... read more

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Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
This is a great article. It is true that many people lose their focus. I would say this is important not just for the business owner and/or the executive team, but for every person within the company (management and lead roles specifically). If there is not a clear focus from the top down, you can't expect each team member to have a laser focus either.
Employment law

Preparing for 2013

Australia’s economic conditions are predicted by some to take a downward turn in 2013, meaning... read more

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Ben Thompson CEO at Employment Innovations (EI)
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Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Thanks for these helpful tips Ben, I am guilty of shopping from the US way too much. It's a vicious cycle because it doesn't make it easier for retailers here to make a profit.
Running your business

Don't treat them mean, just keep them keen

One of the advice someone gave me many years ago is to always shop around at renewal times. He... read more

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Phil Joel Director at SavvySME
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Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
What a catchy motto :)
Lifestyle and health

What Does Your Workplace Hairstyle Say About You?

Your hair can say a lot about you as a person, it can be a reflection and reinforcement of who you... read more

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Gary, we have requests if you can do a male version of this article topic? :-) It would definitely be interesting as well.
Hi Hitesh, Thanks for your comment! Yes, I think how we present ourselves can have an impact on how we're perceived by our colleagues. If you want to win the rat race, you have to look the part ;)
Accounting

Top 10 Tweeting Accountants in Australia

Tweeting accountants - what kind of image does that conjure up for you? Is it a bunch of suited... read more

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Wendy Huang Full Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
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Christie LewisManager at Alan Lewis Accountants
I'm a little embarrassed now at just how little I do use my personal Twitter account (I typically post as the Business Profile). Still, I'm thrilled to make the list and inspired to do better. Thanks!
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Yes I agree DJ! Much popular than I am *blush*
Social media

Where has our competitive advantage gone?

Why do I love working with small business?  My response will no doubtedly be because small... read more

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Wendy Huang Full Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
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Market trend

Proven Low Cost Ideas For Small Business Marketing

Marketing a small business can become expensive, and the lack of funds can hinder a business from... read more

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Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Interested to also know how much time you dedicate to networking every week?
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Thanks for sharing Brenda, I like how your article covers both online and offline marketing tips. Networking in the local areas is particularly important for local businesses. It takes a can-do attitude and positive mindset, not necessarily a big budget, to want to get out there and spread the word. :)
Outsourcing

Why Outsourcing Overseas May Not Work For Your Business

Outsourcing has become very popular and affordable for businesses, whether small, medium or large... read more

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Thanks for your input Rosie. Totally agree. As discussed at AVAC last weekend, the "value add" a local virtual assistant can add to a client's business.
Rosie ShiloOwner at Virtually Yours
Great article Michelle - There are so many things we need to consider that people forget all about when they see that initial price. When considering virtual support from any country (your own or others) you do need to look at all the pros and cons of the service in it's entirety. I find most small businesses in particular could really benefit from a Virtual Assistant who can contribute ideas and resources to the business rather than just getting a job done, and to really get that happening, the Virtual Assistant needs to be located in your country (to understand the culture and business requirements) and to be running their own business. For them, the clients's success is a major objective and inspirator.
Copywriting, content writing and blogging

5 free essential apps for successful bloggers

  Your time is precious and you are often on the go – but you still need to keep updated with... read more

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Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Hey Frederique, I love your top 5 picks. I would maybe add 2 others that I found incredibly useful on my iPhone. Evernote - which I use to jot down notes or inspirations when I've 'idle time'. It syncs with other devices too, which makes it handy. The other is Flipboard. I like the rich image style it uses to present feed from RSS sources, Linkedin and a host of other reputable sources which I am allowed to configure. With its simple to use and rich interface, it super easy to get addicted to it. :)
Business coaching

Business Coaching: Systems Systems Systems

Apparently the definition of a system is "an organized and coordinated method; a procedure." Well I... read more

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Leadership

You rock sister! Celebrating International Women's Day

Happy International Women’s Day! For 102 years we have reserved March the 8th as a day to... read more

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Prue Laurence Director at Psylutions
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Yes, we have come a long way Prue. Certainly something to celebrate.... and even though we are still lagging behind in the equal pay stakes more and more entrepreneurial women are taking this into their own hands. Women supporting women is so empowering!
Great article. Another current female leader is Gail Kelly CEO of Westpac. Go Girl Power!
Business planning

How to Prepare a Simple Business Plan

When you start a business you do not need a fully blown business plan as there are too many... read more

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A lot of business operators seem to struggle with their USP, and confining to one market. Your target market is most important, who are they? What do they know... should I write in industry lingo or should I simplify it? What type of people do you want to attract? If someone says "everyone who needs a ..... service" is my market, then I know they haven't done their homework.
Import and Export

It Pays to Shop Around in a Volatile International Freight Market

Did you know that 2015 has seen unprecedented volatility for international freight with some... read more

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Good article, getting SME's thinking beyond Australia has to good for economy
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Thanks for this Ian. Would be great to have an overview of the market, who's in it and such. :)
Running your business

Employees Are There to Make You Money – Thousands of Dollars In Fact

We sometimes forget this. The only reason I have a team of people is because I think I will make... read more

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Hitesh Mohanlal Director at WOW! Advisors & Business Accountants
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Business coaching

My Small Business Journey (Part 2)

I was now working 80 hours a week and after 2 years I was starting to get really depressed. No more... read more

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Leadership

What's Your Leadership Style?

What's Your Leadership Style? A key role of a manager, according to Henry Mintzberg, is... read more

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Dayo Sowunmi II Co-Founder at Valet Chef
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Dayo Sowunmi IICo-Founder at Valet Chef
Thanks Lina. The key to potentially changing one's leadership style is to first identify which style/s one has, and then figuring out how the team responds and performs with the style of leadership. If I find that I lack the appropriate style to lead a successful team, some soul-searching and introspection tends to help. I reassess my actions, noting that "it's not about me", humble myself and try my hardest to lead in a way that best supports my team. Happy to discuss further offline. Cheers
Lina BarfootEditor at SavvySME
Great article. Interesting discussion on different styles of management, it must be difficult to change your style though if it's not quite what you want it to be? would be very interesting to hear how you might change your management style if it's lacking.
Leadership

Improving decision-making for small business

The great Napoleon Bonaparte, who is often considered as one of the greatest military leaders in... read more

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Phil Khor Founder at SavvySME
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Hitesh MohanlalDirector at WOW! Advisors & Business Accountants
Some great tips here. Thanks Phil.
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Thanks guys, you're very kind :) Eric, well put - it's always about drawing a balance. It's also clarity of vision to ensure that key decisions made in the business are always aligned.
Managing risks

It's a new year - time to review and risk proof your business

Welcome to the new year! So I assume by now you have done your forecasts, reset your goals,... read more

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Kathryn Hamilton Chief Pineapple and Founder at Pineapple Concierge
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Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
I agree. It is always best to self-assess frequently and routinely. Plus doing so not only helps when key employees move on but help train new employees and keep you informed of your own business.
Lina BarfootEditor at SavvySME
Great article! That's always my motto; "just do it!" :)
Human resources

Three reasons not to use psych testing

I am a believer in the value psych testing can add to understanding someone’s motivations,... read more

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Prue Laurence Director at Psylutions
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Investor funding and capital

Australia ranks third in global investments and acquisitions

According to the latest report by Internet Deal Book, Australia (117) had the third largest number...read more

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Online marketing

Is online marketing the key to growing your business?

How many of you click on an advertisement when online?  If you are like me, you would probably... read more

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Glen RothquelOwner at Leads 2 Profits
Thanks David. That is so true! With the advent of online marketing, everyone seem to be doing it without understanding the process, thus, missing out on its benefits.
David PriceOwner at Price Advertising
Yes I think the numbers are lower, Glen. The key has to be weighing up the long term investment in online as opposed to WOM, networking, event sponsorship, email marketing, Social Media, content marketing etc and getting the right balance, not just "going with the flow"...
Onwards and upwards

Happy Mother's Day! Elise Easdown of What's On 4 tells us her story

Elise Easdown is the owner and director of What’s On 4 Australia. She lives in Brisbane with... read more

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Outsourcing

Outsourcing Essentials 6 - Quality

The manufacturing industry has an uneasy history with outsourcing to Low Cost Countries for cost... read more

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Brian Le Mon Owner at GBOS
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Brian MallyonOwner at Luckypole Limited
A good article I think which provides a good overview of things to consider which relate to the aspects of quality. I would however like to make a couple of comments:- 1. I don't quite agree that manufacturers in low cost countries adhere to a lot of the lean manufacturing and quality requirements that are spoken about. Of course there is no one definitive answer, and it varies depending on country, industry etc. I see that as one of the many reasons that they are low cost countries for manufacturing in the first place. I have often seen a lot of waste and inefficiency which can only be acceptable in places where there is a large workforce working for low wages. As an example of this, from memory I believe productivity in China for example, is about one eighth of that in the US, meaning it takes many more people to do the same job. (Happy to be corrected on that as the information is from memory and probably a little out of date.) 2. One thing that is rarely discussed when talking about quality issues is GREED. I am not talking about the concept of overseas outsourcing, as that is a legitimate business process of trying to minimize expenses. Lets be honest about it, every supplier is trying to maximize their profit, and every buyer is trying to minimize their costs, that is part of doing business, and there is nothing wrong with that. I am referring to the buyer who looks to chip away at every area of cost to the point where it is not viable to buy the product at the quality they expect, for the price they want to pay. This is an unfortunate position where the supplier will often not say anything, but accept the proposed price, then replace the materials with inferior ones , resulting in reduced quality. Whereas sometimes paying just a few cents more per piece would negate this, and possibly avoid a higher level of returns and damaged reputations. That's why it is important to know what is realistically achievable and work with your supplier on an outcome that works for everyone concerned.
Business planning

The innovation led by lean start-ups

For many years, the idea of launching a new product from scratch is highly methodological. First, a... read more

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Eric PhuahOwner at Hystericalz Pty Ltd
Will be interesting to see how successful lean start-ups become, thanks for introducing the concept!
Advertising

Benefits of radio advertising

Radio advertising might be seen as old fashioned especially with the rise of the Internet and other... read more

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SavvySME Official Official Account at SavvySME
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David PriceOwner at Price Advertising
Producing a radio spot actually takes a few hours, rather than weeks but you are right, it has a much quicker lead time than TV ads. Radio is also generally used to complement other advertising campaigns.
Paul SeidelOwner at Big Mouth Media
Yes, I agree - radio can be a great medium - it's more immediate, there's better chances of getting something to air quicker than a TV station when the need arises, and you capture far more people in the headcount because - hey, you can't watch a TV while you're driving (although I'm sure some adventurous people have !). I've lent my voice to many radio campaigns in the past, but it's not just the right voice - it's good writing (not always prevalent), and not cliched.
Public relations

Small Business is Too Big To Ignore

Small Business issues, reforms, and legislation are attracting a lot of attention in the lead up to... read more

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Dj Hodgson Marketing & Communications Manager, BDM at David Henderson Online
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Tim GreigOwner at Green Galah Pty Ltd
About time. I couldn't agree more with the sentiments expressed here and the importance of small business to the health of society can not be overlooked...but often is. Not only does it provide jobs but it provides structure and meaning to peoples lives far beyond a pay cheque and possibly more than being a small cog in a huge (corporate) wheel. Still, one has to wonder what the ACCI has been doing for SMEs all this time. I hope they have people with real small business experience...
Human resources

Just two reasons why do small to medium business need HR!

Firstly, when I speak to SME business owners one of the biggest issues they face, is they feel that... read more

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Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Great article. I couldn't agree more how critical the HR function to SMEs, but the big elephant in the room is that many of us in SME can't afford a full time HR person especially the smaller businesses, so it is important to have a flexible option of engaging HR specialist as required, similar to how your rate card is laid out on your site, which is awesome. Thanks for sharing Melissa.
Business planning

Your Incredible Business

Is  your business incredible? These eight pointers show you how you can create an incredible... read more

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Steve Gray Director at Gray Capital Investments
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Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Awesome article Steve, I think so often we run the risk of being complacent with our business over time and need to be reminded about why we started in the first place - that is to build an incredible business. I found tip 1, 3, 4 and 7 really useful. Thanks for sharing.
Steve GrayDirector at Gray Capital Investments
Thanks Tim, The more people explore the notion of being 'incredible' the more questions like this will arise/evolve. Over time the questioning around finding incredible people (both from a HR and an interview perspective) should be a key factor for people in business wanting to develop an 'awesome' business.
Sales and marketing

12 Sales Behaviours That Limit Success

12 Sales Behaviours That Limit Success – You’ve set your sales goals and you’re motivated to... read more

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John Belchamber Owner & Senior Consultant at Invoke Results
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John BelchamberOwner & Senior Consultant at Invoke Results
Thank you Eric, I'm pleased you found it interesting. Many of these behaviours are coachable, some some are more 'ingrained' from our upbringing and far harder to change. However, any learning journey starts with realising there is something your don't know (and need to know) and being prepared to do something about it. Good luck with your journey!
Eric PhuahOwner at Hystericalz Pty Ltd
Thanks for the article John, a really great collection of behaviours to think about and self-assess. I myself definitely ticked off a few as well, but I'm still learning about myself as a salesperson and growing, so will definitely come back to this list a bit later to see how much or if I've changed :)
Copywriting, content writing and blogging

Social media | Five Blog Writing Tips

Five blog writing tips for your... read more

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Cashflow management

8 Tips to get paid quickly

As a business, it is important to stay on top of its cashflow and one very important aspect is to... read more

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Phil Joel Director at SavvySME
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Tim GreigOwner at Green Galah Pty Ltd
Good tips Phil. We have a system in place with staged (escalating) calls/emails to ensure we stay on top of things. If you get this stuff right at the start it is never a chore. We teach customers from day one to pay us on time, whatever the agreed terms are. I can't believe (or maybe I can because people have some reals issues about money) how many SMEs let this get out of hand!
John BelchamberOwner & Senior Consultant at Invoke Results
Great tips for all business people, but especially small business who work with larger organisations that like to stretch these things to their limits!
Online marketing

The Wonderful World Of Video Blogging

People like the visual aspect associated with watching videos. So if you are not utilizing video in... read more

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Attracting talent and recruitment

Video killed the phone interview star

So by now you’ve probably heard of video interviewing as the ‘next big thing’ in... read more

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Prue Laurence Director at Psylutions
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Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Actually video interviews seem like a great idea because you can see the facial expressions, that to me is totally important when selecting a candidate. You want to know what you'll be dealing with day in and day out.
Running your business

Gone baby gone!

In many of my meetings with Clients and Consultants, the question of a future dated... read more

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Brian Le Mon Owner at GBOS
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