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The success of your business will depend a great deal on the demand for your product/service offering.
It is easier for your product/service to be the solution and address an existing problem than it is for you to build a product/service and attempt to create demand for it. .
Consider the following:
1. What do you sell? Think beyond the product/service and its features. What problem will your product/service solve?
2. Who do you sell to? Who is your target market? Why are they your ideal customer?
3. For products, what volumes are other similar businesses selling?
4. For services, how much time do you have available to sell? Are you selling 1-to-1 or 1-to-many?
5. Will volume change over time? Is it seasonal?
6. What's the best case scenario? Can you realistically keep up with demand given your available resources? Can you bring in extra resources at short notice?
7. What's the worst case scenario? Do you have enough cash to get through it?
8. In changing market conditions, how will this impact your volumes? Consider competition, industry slowdown and changing regulations as part of your analysis.
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).
📷: Georgia de Lotz (Unsplash)

Although planning is common in the start-up phase, it is also a valuable exercise during the operating and growth phase of the business.
This involves asking yourself:
1. Why are you in business (your 'why'?). What is your vision?
2. What are your strategic objectives?
3. How will you structure your business? Sole trader, partnership, company or trust?
4. What are the regulatory requirements associated with a business like yours in that industry and country?
5. What are the latest trends in your industry?
6. Who are your main competitors? What competitive advantage do you have over them?
7. Who are your target customers? Consider both demographic (e.g. age, gender, income etc) and psychographic (e.g. values, attitude, lifestyle etc) factors. Is the overall market big enough for you to enter?
8. What does your day-to-day staff organisational structure look like? Consider both functional and administrative reporting lines.
9. How will you operate your business? Consider location, supplies and distribution.
10. Have you got a good accounting system in place to manage cash flow and help you review your real-time financial metrics and other information? Will the system produce accurate and reliable books, records and management reports? Have you got a budget in place? Do you have enough capital?
11. How can you articulate and formalise steps 1 to 10 into a business plan? .
A 'Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Weaknesses' (SWOT) analysis exercise can help in forming the basis for your business plan. Strengths and weaknesses relate to internal factors while Opportunities and Threats relate to external. .
The benefits of having a business plan include:
1. Provide greater control of your business
2. Can assist to secure external funding
3. Understanding and evaluating SWOT to assist with business priorities .
Some common mistakes with business planning include:
1. Underestimating the time and cost involved for certain activities
2. Pricing too low
3. Overly optimistic about demand and volume
4. Not taking into account worst case scenario
5. Excluding and not planning for regulatory obligations

Have the right staff mix
1. Can certain tasks or roles be outsourced so you can focus on your core business? Do you have a flexible workforce with a mixture of full-time, part-time, casual or contract staff?
2. Are the right staff members focused on delivering your core products or services to your target customers?
Increase staff utilisation
3. Do your staff have a clear understanding of how their work contribute to the operation and success of the business?
4. Do you measure staff utilisation and set realistic and achievable targets for them to aim for?
5. Are your staff suitably qualified and experienced for the work that they have been hired to carry out?
Align the appropriate staffing levels to meet demand
6. Do you need to reduce or increase your workforce?
7. Do you need to reduce or increase roster hours?
Reduce staff turnover
8. Are your staff happy? Do they require additional training? Do you need to review their remuneration? Are your staff aligned with the business goals? Does your business promote a positive supportive culture?
9. Can you reduce hiring costs with better retention of staff?
Employ staff
10. Do you need to recruit staff with specialist skills to help grow the business?
11. Can you afford the cost of taking on more staff? Consider costs in addition to wages such as superannuation (pension), insurance and taxes.
12. Are you up to date with the employment laws and regulations that apply? . (Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

Trust in the country’s key institutions – government, business, NGOs and media – has fallen across all sectors for the second year in a row, according to the closely watched Edelman Trust Barometer⠀

Trust in business slid from 48 to 45 per cent, government fell from 37 to 35 per cent, media from 32 to 31 per cent and NGOs from 52 to 48 per cent. ⠀

The good news is that chief executives, journalists and company directors recorded double-digit increases in credibility, despite a drop in trust of the institutions they represent.⠀

Scroll through our gallery to see more and read the full story at www.afr.com/x/h0w5d6⠀

📰: Patrick Durkin⠀
📊: @hewart

#ausbiz #business #culture #trust #society #leadership #success

Spent the afternoon today at @cityofmelbourne
It is an honour for AMK Law to assist Melbourne City Council with the acknowledged feedback and
in-depth comparative analysis through the “Stretch” stage of the council’s RAP implementation.
#melbourne #melbournebiz #startups #startupbiz #auslaw #ausbiz #newlaw #smallbusiness #indigenousaustralia #indigenousbusiness #businessowner #teamwork

Team drinks celebrating the collaboration with @teslamotors and Chifley Tower #ausbiz

The 30-day blogging Challenge will kick off in May and over 30 days it will share with you tips and tricks to help you blog for business.
Limited Spaces
Sign up here with code UsFORYOU
#blogging #ausbiz #contentmarketing #seo #course #business #businesstorytelling #upskill #lbloggers #businessblogging #coaching #marketing

In an ideal world all the inventories you purchased to on-sell to your customers will walk out the door. In return you'll receive the cash for it and everything is A-OK. .
However in the real world we know that's not always the case. Unsold inventory costs money not only in terms of what it costs to acquire them, but also in warehouse/storage space. .
If you sell perishable goods or technology items (prone to obsolescence), having these items remain on your retail shelves/warehouse/storage facilities adds the additional cost of being potentially unrecoverable. .
How can you reduce the amount of cash tied up in unsold inventory? There are ways to mitigate the costs:
1. Reduce the cost of stock or materials. Can the products be sourced from cheaper suppliers without compromising on quality?
2. Improving the payment terms with suppliers. Can the terms be extended? Are there discounts you can take advantage of?
3. Clear obsolete or slow moving stock. Are there items not selling or do you hold obsolete items? Can these be sold to third party vendors (e.g. discount stores). You will end up selling at a discount but how will this cost compare to the cost of continually storing these items and have their value continually decline?
4. Amend the ordering process. Can you automate the purchase ordering process? Can the lead time between placing and receiving an order be reduced?
5. Can you order stock from your suppliers once you have received an order from your customers? Drop shipping is becoming popular as stock are delivered by the manufacturer directly to the customer rather than by the middle man. Is this an option for your business?
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

Tip of the day – Check how much of your super is invested in Australian shares

In light of Bill Shorten’s recently announced proposal to abolish Australian company dividend tax refunds, it is now a good time to check what your super fund is invested in.
This is usually as simple as logging into your super fund's website!

Once you find out what your super fund is invested in, it would be worthwhile seeking answers to the following questions: - Do I have too much or too little exposure to Australian shares?
- Do I have the right mix of Australian and International shares within my super fund? - Do my super fund investments (which may also include property, fixed interest and cash) need a full makeover? - How could the proposed policy impact the performance of my super?
- How could the proposed policy impact my lifestyle and financial position in retirement?

The following chart is sourced from today's AFR #noosa #sunshinecoast #brisbane #sydney #melbourne #australia #ausbiz #finance #investment #shares #property #super #coolum #peregian #sunshinebeach #maroochydore #caloundra #nambour #maleny #financialfreedom #financial #money #asset #wealth #financialadvisor #visitnoosa #visitsunshinecoast #visitnoosaville

High school students tackle racism!⠀

School students from Holroyd High School, Pymble Ladies College and Sydney Boys High School have spoken powerfully about multiculturalism, belonging and racial discrimination.⠀ ⠀
The students addressed a morning tea hosted by Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane to mark #HarmonyDay and the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (#IDERD).⠀


#Education #AusEdu #AusLaw #Diversity #Multiculturalism #RacismItStopsWithMe #Instagood #NFP #NGO #AusBiz #AusPol #AusLaw #Australia #Events #Awards #Opportunities #Media #HumanRights #Rights #Race #CivilLiberties #Freedoms #UN

Plus, 91 percent of dissatisfied customers don't ever come back. - What Customers Crave by Nicholas J. Webb

Whether your business is an online store, global chain or local business, rethink who your customers are. Connect with each type of customer across all touch-points from initial awareness of your brand to after-sale communications to create an exceptional and relevant experience for them.

There are a number of ways you can reduce the cash outflow of your business:
Reduce discretionary spending by:
1. Deferring non-critical expenses
2. Negotiating better credit terms or discounts for early payment
3. Eliminate non-essential expenses .
There are also opportunities for overheads to be reduced:

4. Renegotiate prices on operating expenses such as utilities, rent, maintenance expenses etc
5. Shop around for cheaper options on services you currently use such as bundled telecommunication and internet packages etc
Review your business expenditure and objectively assess whether there are opportunities to eliminate, defer or obtain cheaper prices compared to what you are currently paying. The results might surprise you.
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

Make your business assets work for you to free up cash flow potentially tied up in your business.
1. Do you have assets that are no longer required or under-utilised in the business? Can these be sold to realise some cash?
2. Are there opportunities to get better terms from a lender (e.g. bank etc). Can you refinance?
3. Leasing can free up your cash flow by allowing you to pay for assets over a longer period of time rather than in a lump sum. Is selling your asset/s and leasing it back a viable option for your business?
The above considerations need to be reviewed in the context of other areas in your business. This ensures that any decision made here will not inadvertently have a detrimental effect elsewhere. .
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

The strategy gurus have some advice for Australian businesses as they move to harness global economic momentum and throw the switch to growth after years of cost-cutting: the ability to use data, to move quickly, to build valuable partnerships and to re-establish trust will all be key.⠀

Our BOSS magazine editor Jo Gray spoke to the top strategists at @bainandcompany, @mckinseyco, @pwc_au, @deloitteaus and @kpmgaustralia to get their read on the biggest challenges facing Australia’s CEOs as they set and implement strategies for sustainable growth over the next few years.⠀

Scroll through our gallery to see their five takeaways.⠀

Read more: www.afr.com/x/h0wgk0⠀

#growth #leadership #business #ausbiz #strategy #data

Following on from our last post on changing prices to increase sales, another possible strategy is to increase the volume of sales.
Can you increase the number of potential customers?
1. Will a new marketing campaign be effective in attracting new customers?
2. Can you offer discounts or have a promotional sale? .
Can you increase the number of products or services?
3. Is it viable to offer additional products or services?
Can you sell into a new market or territory?
4. Is there opportunity to find a new customer base?
Can your sales process be improved?
5. Have you considered adding another sale platform (e.g. via a wholesaler, e-commerce etc)
6. Are there opportunities to streamline the sales process to make it more cost effective and efficient?
7. Can you increase the conversion of enquiries into sales?
The above questions provide a good start to the conversation. Be sure to involve staff members from different departments impacted, to ensure a wide range of opportunities and issues are considered before implementing any change.
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

Trade Debtors (aka Accounts Receivable) is usually one of the largest Current Asset item on a business' Balance Sheet. .
This amount represents money owed to your business by customers/clients for products/services sold.
Adopting a pro-active approach to ensure that your customers/clients pay on time is critical to ongoing cash flow management.
Have you considered the following strategies in order to collect cash owed to your business faster?
1. Issue a progress invoice
2. Invoice in advance
3. Automate the invoicing process
4. Offer direct debit payment options
5. Give your customer/client a courtesy call
6. Send out a reminder notice
7. Automate and/or outsource the follow-up process
8. Consider a customer's credit risk profile to determine payment terms as some are considered more high risk than others
9. Request payment upfront
10. Offer an early payment discount
11. Implement late payment penalty
Consider the unique circumstances of your business and the relationships you have with your customers before implementing any potential changes.
(Please note that this is general information only and does not take into account your specific circumstance).

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