Essentials.jpg      Starting and running a small business is a massive commitment.  Unlike big businesses that can hire legions of staff to perform all sorts of roles, small business owners end up doing most jobs.  This section provides insight into some key issues for every small owner to think about.

Accounting 101
Financial statements are important because they can help you to uncover problems and identify corrective action. At any given point in time the profit and loss statement, balance sheet and cash flow statement measure different financial aspects of your business, allowing you to make economic and operational decisions based on accurate historical data.
Secure your small business with a foolproof password protection policy
Data security is just as vital to the success of a small business as it is to a large company. Yet while large companies may spend considerable amounts of money and time establishing password security protocols and educating their staff on these issues, small businesses need not go to the same level of expense.
Effective resourcing
Some businesses of late could be forgiven for thinking that potential employees are falling from the sky with great abundance. With unemployment levels higher than in previous years and the media reporting of job losses on a seemingly regular basis business owners could be of the belief that people are lining up for jobs at their firms.
Managing an overdraft
An overdraft is a short-term funding option designed to help a business through minor lean spells by allowing you to spend more money than you have in the bank. Essentially, it provides instant cash to bridge the gap between incoming and outgoing funds and it is more cost effective than buying on a credit card, where the associated interest rates are far higher.
Common SME mistakes
Life as a business owner means dealing with a daily dose of challenging decisions, any one of which can have a significant impact on operations. Here are ten costly and common mistakes made by SMEs - make sure you don't fall into the same trap!
Electronic invoicing: save time and money
Businesses are continually looking for ways to eliminate paper processes. So, if you're looking to start your own business why not avoid as many of them as possible from the outset by utilising electronic invoice delivery. If on the other hand you are already running your own business and you are using a paper-based invoicing system, perhaps this information will convince you to make the switch.
Performance management tips
Performance management is one of those things that many of us don't enjoy doing. Some of us find it virtually impossible to have difficult conversations, while others actually find it tough to give praise for a job well done. Truth be known, both aspects of feedback are equally important. Your team needs to know when they are doing well just as they need to know when things aren't up to scratch.
Preparing for the recovery
The promise of economic recovery is in sight but that doesn't mean firms can carry on with business as usual. The environment has changed and therefore, your business also needs to change to ensure you're ready to hit the ground running when the upturn really takes hold.
Starting a new business
Starting a new business can be a daunting task for the first time entrepreneur. There are numerous tasks requiring attention and so many of them fall outside your area of expertise and passion. You have a fair understanding of what needs to be done, but what if you miss something important    - what if you don't quite get it right?
Developing a business plan
If you want to be an entrepreneur and start your own company, you need to create a business plan. Your business plan is absolutely essential for your business as it's your blueprint for the future. It sets your direction and keeps you on track once you're up and running. It's also a requirement when you're seeking finance.


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