Own A Business? You May Need A Wake-Up Call

Many business owners are highly focused on the day-to-day running of their enterprise. That isn’t too surprising – running any company is a challenge that throws up constant issues to be addressed. However, it’s important to remember not to spend all of your time focusing on the here-and-now. Yes, it’s important to forge new networking links, to improve customer service and to grow your bottom line. Yet, it’s also very important to plan an exit strategy for the future.

The Exit Strategy – Important Yet Overlooked

Running a business is, all-too-often, a life-consuming task. If you’ve just launched a start-up, or if you’re a few years down the line into establishing your thriving company, probably the furthest thing from your mind is how you’re eventually going to leave the organization that you’re working so hard to build up. However, this is quite worrisome, considering that, on average, around 80-90% of your net worth could be tied up in your company.  If you’re going to work for decades to create a valuable organization, you need to plan for how that value can be harvested when you’re ready to move on to pastures new.

The Key Statistics

For the average business owner, around 90% of their net worth will be tied up within their business, yet around half have absolutely no plans in place for exiting the company that they’ve built up. This leaves a difficult situation when the times come to move on. Whether you’re keen to retire and enjoy the fruits of your labor or whether you’re ready to embrace a new and exciting challenge, the reality could be that it could be harder to get out of your existing company than you ever imagined.

Over half of all business owners have sold their business in mind as their exit strategy of choice, with over 40% of them considering doing this within the next 5 years. Yet, it’s likely that they could find numerous obstacles in their way when they get around to putting their company on the market, and they’re also very likely to be unhappy when they finally make the sale. Even those who want to keep their business in the family face a host of issues when it comes to sharing out ownership amongst several potential heirs.

In short, it seems that exiting any business can be fraught with difficulties, so there’s never been a better reason to start planning well in advance.

Beginning Exit Planning at An Early Stage

The team at Corporate Business Solutions recommends starting to deliberately consider Exit Planning as early as possible. It may even be best to beginning writing your exit plan before you even set up your company! Bear in mind that, to have the best chance of success, your process of exit planning should take somewhere between 4 and 10 years, so you need to leave enough time.

Why does it take so long? A good exit plan won’t just analyze your business and determine ways of strengthening it with your exit in mind, but it also bears in mind the owner’s financial and personal situation as well as their life plan once they’ve left the business. It takes calibration and time to align these factors.

So, don’t leave it too late to arrange the exit you want. When you’ve spent a lifetime building up a successful company you don’t want to throw it all away at the last hurdle. Seek professional help and start drawing up your plan today.

 

Investing in Onboarding to Benefit Your Business

Running a company involves making a lot of decisions, and one of the most important is where you’ll be making investments to further your business goals. Although it may be challenging to determine where and how money should be spent, it’s certainly worth considering investing it in onboarding your new employees. Evidence shows that employees who enjoy an excellent onboarding experience will be almost 70% more likely to remain with that employer for a minimum of 3 years, so it’s well worth making this investment.

Corporate Training and Its Role

Corporate training could have a vital role in your company’s strategic plan if you want to improve your new employee onboarding experience. Culture development and increased retention are two key areas that organization is usually focus on when drawing up a strategic plan, and implementing corporate training can tackle both of those priorities effectively.

Many businesses choose to train new employees themselves through one-to-one sessions with staff members, managers, and other employees. As an approach, this makes sense, since it creates a more organic transition into the company by learning from those who are already working in it. Yet, there are some shortcomings associated with DIY training too. A more effective approach could be to pair in-house training with professional training services so onboarding plans can be designed that facilitate a successful and smooth professional development for new staff from their very first day.

Introduction to Your Company’s Culture

When introducing new hires into your organization, part of the onboarding process should be an introduction to your company’s culture. Every staff member needs to fully embrace the workplace culture if the business is to thrive. Therefore, part of this early phase of your recruits’ employment should help them to immerse themselves in the cultural experience of your business and introduce them to its goal’s missions and values so that they can align themselves with them.

Communication and Continuation

Communication is central to the success of any workplace, so part of your recruits’ onboarding experience must involve helping them to integrate with the team and to forge strong connections with their new colleagues. It’s also vital to remember that the process of onboarding is an ongoing one – it doesn’t come to an end after the first day or even week. Checking in regularly with new hires is essential to ensure that they are coping and increasing confidence as they settle into their new role.

Seeking Business Consultancy Advice

The onboarding process is essential for any small business that wants to grow its bottom line and thrive in today’s competitive marketplace. Corporate Business Solutions reviews show that our clients experience significant benefits when they adopt our advice regarding implementing more effective organizational socialization. New employees enjoy better morale and have a more positive welcoming experience when joining the company, while retention rates increase exponentially.

New employees are an asset to your organization, so ensuring that recently recruited staff members enjoy the best and smoothest transition process into your company is imperative.  By investing in onboarding, you can set your business up for a positive and successful future.

Key Questions You Need To Ask Yourself When Planning A Business Exit Strategy

If you’re planning your exit strategy from your small business, it can be difficult to know how to get started. While a lot of the planning is bound to be unique to your own company, there are some questions you could ask yourself that will help to get you started with developing your business exit plan and avoid some common mistakes.

Will You Want To Remain Involved With Your Business Forever?

When you start up a business, you’re probably not thinking about a time when you no longer want to be involved with it. However, even at the earliest stages of your endeavor, you need to be realistic about the future. Even when you dedicate your whole career to running one business, eventually you’ll probably be planning to retire at some point. So, you need to set up the business from its earliest days to ensure this will always be a possibility at some point. You should also revisit this question on a regular basis as your plans and life evolve to make sure that you’re moving towards the right goals for you.

What Financial Goals do You Have?

Everyone has their own financial goals that they hope to achieve. Even if you love your business idea, to be truly committed to it you will almost certainly have financial goals and needs that play into your business plans. Whatever yours are, they will have a key role to play in the outcome of your business exit strategy plan.

How Does Planning For Your Exit Work?

Working with professionals like Corporate Business Solutions Consultants is the best way to make the right decisions for you. You will have to work on executable items like deal structure and taxes, and you’ll also need an understanding of your company’s full value so you can work out all your available options.

Planning Ahead

If your business exit is looming on the horizon, it’s important to choose a strategy and stick to it. However, if you’ve got sufficient time to plan in advance you should usually set up for several options. The earlier you start planning, the more options you’ll have to pick from when you’re contemplating your company’s future.

No Single Perfect Solution

Just like all other aspects of running your own business, there’s no single perfect exit strategy that fits everyone. In the end, finding the right strategy for your business and you as an individual depends on several different factors. It may also develop or change as you move through your business’s lifecycle. The best thing to do, therefore, is to plan for your business exit strategy at as early a stage as possible. Seeking professional advice is always the best idea so you can devise a plan that meets all your unique requirements. When you think proactively about the process – how it could look, how it could be carried out, and what kind of consequences there could be – it’s more likely that you’ll achieve success when the time comes to part ways.

Top Tips For Improving Your Business Efficiency

If you’re running a business, you’re no doubt extremely busy. It’s hard to find time to get everything done, but if you can improve the efficiency of your business, you’ll find that you can not only get more done but actually boost your revenue and take your company to a whole new level. With this in mind, here are some top tips to improve your business efficiency.

Adopt Project Management programs

Keeping every member of your team on track couldn’t be more important when you need to improve your efficiency, and that’s why adopting a project management program such as Trello is especially helpful. This will enable you to plan time more effectively and to ensure that all tasks are completed in a timely manner. You’ll be able to see at a glance whether a specific job has been completed and, if not, it can be chased up rapidly.

Carry Out Weekly Reviews

Each week, it’s well worth planning a half-hour into your schedule to review everything that went well and all the lessons that you have learned that can help you to improve in the future. With a weekly review session, you’ll be able to identify your successes, learn from them, replicate them and celebrate them, as well as analyze everything that went wrong so you can learn how similar mistakes can be avoided in the future.

Plan the Next Week

At the end of every week, it’s important to look over your diary and plan the week to come in advance. What do you require to prepare for upcoming appointments? Which jobs do you need to complete before attending them? Once the week begins, you’ll probably lack sufficient time to think about the things you may be missing or the things you haven’t yet achieved, so plan ahead so that you can be well-prepared.

Process Finances Regularly

Try to make a specific time slot every month or week to process finances and check bank accounts for outgoings and incomings. This will ensure you stay on top of your expenses and expenditures so you don’t have a lot of chasing up to do in 6 months’ time.

Arrange Marketing In Advance

Marketing is an essential task, but it can often be left behind in the rush of day-to-day business management. Create your marketing materials in advance so you can be fully prepared. If you spend a whole day working on all your upcoming newsletters, blogs, and posts, you’ll not only be more efficient but you’ll also be able to create better flow between your posts since you’ll be in the groove.

Reply To Your Emails Once Daily

It can be tempting to keep checking your emails all day long, but actually, this isn’t an efficient strategy. Taking time out to reply to every single email that comes in means that you’ll be constantly distracted. Instead, take time out once per day to respond to everything that has come in. This will keep your inbox manageable without taking up too much of your time.

Bring In Expert Advisors

It can be difficult to know how to use your time to your best advantage, however, when you bring in professional help you can be sure that you’ll have expert assistance at your fingertips to improve your efficiency. Corporate Business Solutions are on hand to offer you expert advice to help boost your company’s efficiency, improve its policies and drive its efficiency so that your business can begin to grow and thrive.

Is Size Important or Not?

The importance of size obviously depends on the situation. For instance, a business benefits from having a larger customer base. In cases such as this, it’s important for a business to optimize the size of its assets.

One of the best ways to do this is to use analytics. Doing so helps businesses to see where improvements need to be made. The problem is that many businesses struggle to have the time and expertise to make the best use of analytics. If this applies to your business, you may find that getting help from Corporate Business Solutions Consultants is a good idea. Let’s take a closer look at why getting this type of help can be so important.

What is analytics?

Analytics has come to the forefront of the business world in recent years. It’s a field that makes use of data, IT, statistics and quantitative analysis in order to provide detailed information. This information is used by businesses in order to plan and strategize effectively.

Analytics can be applied in many different areas including customer relationship management, management of business finances, HR management and management of the supply chain.

Why is business analytics so important?

Considering the question of the size that was raised earlier in this article, you can start to see why analytics are so important to a business. For instance, how can your business understand the size of its customer base, or its revenue, if it does not have analytics in place? It’s important that your business has this information so that it can make decisions about improvements that need to be made.

The simple fact is that analytics can help your business grow the size of its share of the market and increase the number of customers that it has, and the resulting revenue. This means that your business can remain competitive and continue to grow. Obviously, these are important considerations for any business.

Different types of analytics

Most full analytics processes involve the use of three types of analytics; descriptive analytics, predictive analytics, and prescriptive analytics.

Descriptive analytics

This is the part of the analytics process that deals with the interpretation of historical data. It provides a business with information about what has happened in the business up to that point.

Predictive analytics

Predictive analytics involves using techniques such as machine learning and predictive modeling to analyze the current and past situation with the business in order to predict future situations.

Prescriptive analytics

This is the stage in business analytics which involves the use of predictive and descriptive analytics to help make informed decisions for the business. This is done using mathematical and computational sciences.

The answer to the question about whether the size is important or not is that it certainly can be. Businesses need to concentrate on the size of their revenue and market share in order to thrive. Using business analytics helps them to do this. If you want to ensure that you use analytics for your business, as effectively as possible, it may be a good idea to seek professional assistance.

 

To Sell or Not To Sell – That is the Question

You may not realize it, but selling your business does not have to be a solely financial decision. Although, you do need to make sure that any sale you make is as financially advantageous as possible.

This is why it often makes sense to get help from the experts at CBS-CBS.com when you are considering the prospect of a sale. They can help you with knowing the value of your business and understanding if selling is the right decision. The question is, why might you be considering the sale of your business? Here are three potential reasons for the sale of a business, not all of which are financially based.

The value of the business

Working with a professional partner is an excellent way of understanding the value of your business. Some of the main factors that contribute to the value of a business are:

  • Projected revenue.
  • Industry fluctuations.
  • Availability of businesses on the market.

If your business has a high value, and you can secure a substantial amount of liquidity, it may be time to sell. This is because it’s important to recognize that you may not always be in such a financially advantageous situation.

Lack of appetite for business risk

For many business owners, there comes a time when the risk of running a business is tiring rather than exhilarating. This can mean that they become risk-averse and are less willing to innovate and change. This means that business growth is likely to be stifled. It could even mean that the business begins to fail.

If you are a business owner who recognizes themselves in this description, it may be a good idea to sell your business. This is especially the case if your business is in a good position at present. If this is the case, you should be able to make a good sale and get out of the business before your risk aversion starts to have an adverse effect.

The chance of a new opportunity

Becoming tired of the risk of running a business, is almost the exact opposite of another potential reason for selling. Many entrepreneurs feel that they need a new challenge, even when their current business is successful.

This could be because they lack the motivation to continue to innovate in the same field, or because they simply want to experience something new and be challenged by mitigating new risks. If you are a business owner who feels as though they need the challenge of a completely new direction, it may be a good idea to sell. You can then use any profits that you make to help get your new enterprise off the ground.

Businesses are bought and sold every day; for many different reasons. If you are thinking of putting your business on the market, you will have your own personal reasons for doing so. Whatever the reason, it’s important to consider the sale carefully and seek assistance from the experts if you need help with valuing your business.

Delegating: A Crucial Leadership Quality

As a business owner, you’re likely always looking for and learning new qualities to make you a great leader. Having strong leadership skills is essential for a successful business. If you cannot lead your team and your company, it will be difficult to push it forward.

One of those top leadership qualities is knowing how and when to delegate. Delegating is essential for not just yourself and keeping your task load manageable, but it also shows that you trust your team to take on these responsibilities.

There may not necessarily be a right or wrong way to delegate. However, there are some tips that will help you be better at it. Your Corporate Business Solutions consultants have a few delegating tips to help.

Know Who to Delegate To

A good delegate knows who can handle that task. You will have certain people that can handle more responsibilities than others, in which you would delegate larger tasks. Those who are more creative, there would be specific tasks you delegate to them. The point is that you know who can handle what, and you delegate accordingly. This will help you and your team be successful.

Knowing What to Delegate

Not only should you know whom to delegate to, but you should also know what is and isn’t appropriate for you to delegate. If you’re just starting, you’ll likely want to start with smaller tasks to see how it goes. As time progresses though, you’ll begin to feel more comfortable delegating more substantial and more important jobs.

It’s important to note that not every task on your plate should get delegated. As the leader, you still need to take on the things that only the leader should handle. Time-sensitive, delicate, and personal tasks should still be left to you.

Don’t Hover and Micromanage

If the purpose of delegating is to ease up your workload and trust your employees, hovering over them will not solve the issue. In fact, micromanaging will only make things worse.

It’s okay to check in with your team from time to time, and it’s a good leadership habit to get into. However, when you’re presences is dominating to the point that your team feels frustrated and not trusted, you’ll only cause issues. When you delegate, let the task go.

Communicate Efficiently

When you delegate a task, you need to ensure that you properly communicate the task, so the person knows what he or she needs to do. If you only give half the information, or can’t clearly communicate the task, that person will either keep coming back with questions or deliver the project not how you wanted.

When you delegate a task, make sure to clearly lay out your expectations, along with any instructions on how to perform the task. Be available to answer questions, but also encourage the employee to learn on his or her own as well.

Give Credit

If you delegate a task, only to take the credit for it, you’ll have many upset employees. No one will want to help you out again if that’s how things go. When you delegate a task, it’s imperative that you give credit where credit is due. Reward for a job well done, and thank everyone who was involved in the project.

Delegating is an essential leadership skill to learn and master. Not only will it make your job easier, but it also builds up trust and the employer to employee relationship for a successful team.

6 Instagram Tips Every Business Owner Needs

Instagram has turned into a powerful tool that businesses can take advantage of. It’s one of the most popular social media platforms around, and many users enjoy scrolling through their feed to see what’s happening around the world.

For businesses, Instagram is a way to connect with its customers and clients. You can show behind the scenes photos and videos of what goes on in the day, showcase employees, or give your followers a sneak peek of something new.

If you do not have an Instagram account for your business, you should start one right away. To help you out, Corporate Business Solutions has six tips for your business Instagram account.

Follow People in Your Industry

Those who work within your industry, it’s a good idea to follow them. There are a few reasons behind it (and it’s not to copy what other people are doing). To start, when you follow someone, chances are they’ll take a look at your profile. They may even follow you back.

Another reason to follow people in your industry is to see the latest trends, and whether or not you’re keeping up with your competition. If you’re wondering why your clientele is slow, low or sales are slow, take a peek at your competition and see what you’re missing.

Follow People Who Follow Your Competition

Not only do you want to follow those in your industry, the ones who follow your competition, but you should also add them to your list too. Those clients are following your competition for a reason – for what they sell. Since you’re in the same industry, they are likely more inclined to follow you back since they’ll be interested in what you have to offer.

Have a Target Audience

If you’re posting for the sake of posting with no plan in mind, your account will only grow so much. Before you begin anything, determine who your target audience is. Once you know that, you can start to tailor your posts to them.

Create Engaging Content

After you set your target audience, you want to create content that will engage them. If you’re trying to reach to women in their early 20s, you wouldn’t want to post pictures and videos that are more appealing to men in their 50s.

Are you running out of creative and original content? Post-behind-the-scenes photos and videos and upcoming products or events with your business. Ask questions in your post to get your followers to interact with you.

Interact With Your Followers

If you want people to interact with you, you need to interact with them back. There is something to be said when a company replies to a comment from a customer. To them, it shows that you’re listening and taking the time to read what they’re saying.

Don’t Sacrifice Quality for Quantity

Many think you need to be constantly posting throughout the week. You can, but there is a good chance you’ll end up boring your customers. Cluttered feeds don’t get much attention.

Instead, focus on the quality of the post rather than how often. Although you do want to be consistent, you don’t need to post five photos in one day (unless you have a reason to).

What to Do With a Late-Paying Client

If you haven’t come across this yet, prepare yourself as it’s bound to happen. You have a customer or client who just won’t pay your invoice on time.

Late payments put a strain on your business, yourself and the relationship between you and your clients. You spend quite a bit of time and effort to do the work the client needs; you expect in return that you’ll get compensated in a timely manner. Late payments are one way to burn bridges between people.

It doesn’t matter what type of work you do. You deserve to get paid and get paid on time. Although there are some circumstances beyond people’s control in which payment may get delayed (in which case, this should get communicated between all parties), for the most part though, you should get paid on time.

If you’re struggling with a late-paying client, Corporate Business Solutions Reviews has a few ways to help you get paid.

Send Out Reminders

In some cases, all that’s happened is your client forgot to send out the payment. A simple reminder may do the trick. There are a few ways to do this. You can either send a quick email or text reminding them about the invoice or resend the invoice altogether.

To prevent late payments, send out a few reminders before the due date. Send out the first reminder a week before the payment due date, the day before, on the due date, and a week after the due date.

Make a Phone Call

Sometimes, emails and text messages can get lost and forgotten about. A phone call is a form of communication that is hard to ignore. Also, a phone call seems to stress the point that much more.

If you decide to make a phone call to the client, use your best customer service skills you have. You don’t want to burn any bridges with your clients. Approach the situation in a calm manner and let them know this is a simple reminder.

Implement a Late Payment Fee

Whether or not you struggle with late payments, implementing a late payment fee is a good business practice. It helps ensure that you receive payment on time and if you don’t, you’re compensated for the days you’ve waited for payment.

If you go this route, make sure it’s well-known to every client that you have a late payment fee. You wouldn’t want to catch them off guard with additional charges and hurt your relationship with the client.

Refuse Work

Do you have a client who is late with payments every time, no matter how many reminders and phone calls you send them? It may be time to cut ties with this client. Typically, a business goes this route as a last option, unless there are other factors included.

When refusing to work with a client, you still want to do so politely and professionally. You never know if the client will say something to another person about the experience. Be confident and straightforward with your decision, and explain why you’re not going to work with them anymore.

It’s important to keep track of all invoices, when they’re paid, and how many reminders you’ve sent. That way, if you need to contact them or decide to stop working with them, you have the proof to back your claims.

6 Qualities to Look For When Hiring a New Employee

When the time comes to hire employees, it can be difficult to determine who is the best fit for the position. Especially if you have many applications coming in, eventually you have to select one. Do you have a list of qualities you’re wanting from your new employee?

As send out a job posting, typically you want to hire the best and brightest person. Although your business will have its unique needs compared to others, there are some standard traits which employees should possess that work across all companies.

Corporate Business Solutions is here to help you out. As you begin your hiring process, pay attention to the following six traits to find the best employee for your company.

Dependability

You want someone whom you can depend on, not having to check in to ensure work is getting done. A dependable employee can be trusted with almost any task, and you know it will get done. If not, you can guarantee they will keep you informed or ask for help.

Commitment

When you hire an employee, you’re looking for someone that will stick with you for a long time, rather than walk out the door after the first month. Why? Because it can cost you more money having to hire and train new employees on a regular basis. Commitment is a significant quality to look for.

Good Work Ethic

A good employee is one that knows when it’s time to get to work and ignore distractions. The work ethic of an employee is another top trait to pay attention to. What would you rather have: an employee who clocks in, does the bare minimum, then heads home. Alternatively, would you instead prefer an employee who is willing to put in more than just the minimum, is willing to work extra hours if needed, and one whom you can rely on?

Positive Attitude

The attitude of the potential employee is another significant characteristic to look out for. Someone who comes into the office with a poor attitude day after day will bring down the whole team and create problems with the work environment. Instead, find an employee who can maintain a positive attitude at work, and can leave personal issues at the front door.

Team Member

Even though you want an employee who can work alone without supervision, you still want that employee to work well with the rest of the team (even if the team is just you). If your new worker continually buts heads with everyone around, it will be difficult to get high-quality work done.

Communicator

Ideal employees should know how important communication is in not just the workplace, but in life in general. Many issues can stem from improper communication and a lack of clarity. A good employee should be able to adequately communicate what he or she needs, is concerned about, or if he or she needs help.

On the other side of communication is listening skills. As important as it is for an employee to communicate, they must be able to listen when someone else is talking with them. Pay attention to their verbal and nonverbal communication during the interview process.