Brands and franchise fund

The easy way to lose your business – Part 2

Not listening. Entrepreneurs normally have strong personalities with specific viewpoints and stick to what they believe in. That is good, but it is also wise to step back and listen. Listen to what your customer is telling you. This will give you a very good indication of what they want and need, and the problems they encounter. Let us start with what they want. I remember when I was running my own business I wanted to manufacture what I tho...
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The easy way to lose your business – Part 1

The minute you take your eye off the ball you risk your business. Many entrepreneurs work very hard to establish and build a business and after a while they feel confident that they have it all under control. They have built up the expertise necessary to manage the business and it becomes second nature, but eventually they fall into a ‘comfort zone’, which is the start of the demise. I remember a client of mine saying: “I keep the keys o...
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Stay relevant to stay in business

The way you run your business is often based on what you believe made it a success in the first place. Your plan of action is based on the credence that what worked in the past will work in the future. As long as this philosophy works its fine, but to what extent does is actually work? When I visit entrepreneurs and start asking questions about their business model, how long they have been in business and why they think their business is still...
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Marketing your business effectively

The world has changed, nothing is a given any more, not even an effective marketing strategy of the past. Habits and trends are different and the way consumers think and buy is different. Technology has progressed in leaps and bounds. To market your business effectively, you need to be on top of all of this. In the past you told the customer, now they tell you. They want choices and they want to make the decisions. No longer can you “tell th...
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Growing your business

If your business is established, you already know the ins and outs of your business environment. However, with market trends changing as often as they do, it is important to stay abreast with these changes and keep your options open. With the SME environment becoming increasingly competitive, it's important to keep an eye out for new opportunities and possibilities. If expanding your business is something you want to explore, here are some tip...
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Assessing your company’s financial position

If you're not so clued up about the accounting and financial side of your business, you may not realise how an in-depth financial analysis can benefit your company. Learn how to get the most out of your financial information. You may think that because you have good bookkeeping and accounting processes in place and your cash flow is under control, you can sit back and relax. Unfortunately, you'd be wrong. This is the perfect time to do an in-de...
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Getting finance for my small business

Ever wondered why SMEs cannot access finance for their businesses? And is it justified? Research indicates that access to finance is the main hindrance for entrepreneurs in starting or expanding a business. This is not just a local phenomenon, but is experienced by entrepreneurs worldwide. Sometimes it is justified. There is a simple reason for the lack of available finance for SMEs, and that is the associated risk involved in the financing of...
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What the business world can learn from female entrepreneurs

It is widely agreed that women's style of doing business tends to differ from that of men, even though the distinctions are never clear-cut. But there is enough of a difference to suggest that the rise of female entrepreneurs is slowly changing the culture of the business world. Is it a change for the better, and can all business owners, male and female, embrace this change and benefit from it? Yes to all of the above, says Gugu Mjadu, executive...
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Gender parity within reach as numbers of women entrepreneurs keep rising

If lending figures from Business Partners, South Africa's leading finance house for small and medium enterprises, are anything to go by, genuine gender parity seems to be within reach in the local community of owner-managed businesses in the foreseeable future. Jeremy Lang, Regional General Manager: Inland West of Business Partners, is quick to point out that in order to reach this parity South Africa still needs more female entrepreneurial role...
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It’s time to prepare for the second half

For a spectator of a game of football, the half-time break is merely a chance to stock up on some beer, but for the captains, the coaches and the players, it is a crucial few minutes of reviewing and tweaking their game plan. In a similar way, businesses that do not use some time in the middle of the year to reflect and plan are running the risk of losing the game, says David Morobe, regional general manager of Business Partners. The questions a...
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