Best Practices for Business Management

Business Management

Being a great business leader is about more than just making sure everyone is doing their jobs and getting work done. It’s also about following best practices so your team can be as productive as possible. There are several best practices that can help you achieve these results.

 

Start by Improving Your Own Skills

Modeling better business practices starts with your own knowledge and behavior. To be successful in business management, you will need to be true to your vision before you can impact the organization. It’s important to focus on developing connections instead of just having everyone be there for the paycheck.

You might consider taking some business leadership courses to improve these skills. You could even go as far as to get a degree in business management or leadership. Paying for your degree can be challenging, especially if you decide to go to school full-time and only working part-time. That’s why you might want to consider taking out a student loan from a private lender to pay for college.

 

Meeting Often

It’s especially important to conduct regular meetings if some or all of the team works remotely. But it’s still a good idea to have everyone come together, even if they do not work from home. This can help everyone feel more connected and stay on the same page. Meetings can help create a healthier organization.

There are a few things you can do to make these times more productive. For example, understand the difference between and separate meetings for strategic and tactical business planning. Doing these things regularly can help your organization focus on its core values. Everyone who takes part can align their principles with these values and gain more insight on business practices. They can also give their take on how things are going. It’s important to allow enough time so everyone has a chance to give their opinion and feel heard.

 

Keeping Workers Engaged

Workers who don’t feel a part of the team also do not care about doing their jobs well. They just care about getting their paycheck and leaving at the end of the day. It’s important for you as the leader to take care of your employees and learn how to make them care about the company’s values. Once a worker is more engaged, they will be more productive and enthusiastic. They are also more likely to take responsibility for their actions and performance.

One way you can go about this is to reward a good effort. By recognizing achievement and employee efforts, you can ensure they feel more valued. It might seem obvious, but many management trainings overlook how important it is for employees to feel appreciated. You might feel like being too appreciative can undermine your authority. However, rewarding employees can make them more committed and interested in doing their jobs well.

 

The Importance of Vulnerability and Commitment

Managers should be more than shadowy figureheads in the lives of their employees. Instead, getting to know each person on a more individual level can help them feel more valued and appreciated. This is one of the key traits of successful business leaders that is not terribly difficult to adopt. Vulnerability can also be a critical part of building team dynamics. If someone doesn’t feel like they can put their ideas out there or speak more openly, it’s harder for trust to form.

Commitment is another important quality. Without trust, teammates might try to avoid conflict instead of putting their opinions out there. They may fear that others won’t agree with their opinions, but this can prevent everyone from finding a common solution. On the other hand, when employees trust that their opinions will be heard and they will be respected, the atmosphere will be much more welcoming for everyone.

 

Keeping Everyone Connected

It’s important for everyone on the team and at the company to have shared values and a core mission. When they are engaged at the right level, they will be more efficient and productive. It’s important to hire new workers based on how well you feel their values align with those of the company. When everyone shares the company’s mission and values, they will be better members of the team. It’s actually good for them to come from a variety of racial, economic, and social backgrounds since it can increase the amount of insight the team has as a whole. Just make sure the team’s values are not different.

It’s a good thing to make sure everyone hits it off with each other, and things like retreats and other team building activities can help you accomplish this. And it’s also important to pay attention to ideas when they first come out. However, you also need to focus on the dynamics of the team. That’s because all these individual activities can be distracting and cause workers to get off track. It’s a good idea to be consistently realigning and assessing your goals. This will help you achieve the most productive team.

4 Tips to Become More Employable

Woman watching a webinar and taking notes

Covid-19 had brought a series of unfortunate impacts on our lives, right down to some of us sadly losing our jobs as the economy suffered. In June 2020, it was reported that over 6.5 million jobs were lost due to the economic fallout from lockdown, along with 29% of final year university students losing their jobs and a 28% having their graduate job offer deferred or withdrawn.

With concerns over the Omnicrom variant growth, causing the PM to re-introduce some lockdown procedures such WFH and masks being worn in public spaces, it begs the question whether they’ll be another lockdown before Christmas, thus a repeat of similar detrimental effects that occurred during 2020? With that mind, we thought it would be worth-while providing this guide for those seeking employment and what they can do, should the unthinkable times repeat, causing career ladders to be impacted again during the current situation. Employability is a major consideration. Whether you’ll be made redundant again or you still have a job that could be at stake and what you can do to make sure you more employable if the unthinkable becomes a reality. Many organisations may provide free courses, tools, and tutorials again to support workers during this trying time.

Here, we’ll take a look at steps you can take to develop your skillset for your career.

 

Online courses

Google searches for ‘online courses’ had skyrocketed to an interest score of 100, the highest score possible, on the 29th March shortly after lockdown. The Open University reported that 24 per cent of employees had enrolled with additional learning opportunities to enhance their CV. If a repeat were to happen, to avoid the risk of being obsolete and outperformed by rival candidates, look at online courses you could get involved in to develop your skillset for a job you have or to help you progress. This doesn’t need to be an online degree but can be free online micro credentials to demonstrate your appetite for learning and commitment to your career.

A Google trend chart showing an increase in searches for
Sourse: Google Trends

You can use free time to take advantage of online learning to develop the skills you might be required of in years to come, if you want to learn how to use certain software, or to brush up on soft skills. There is something for everyone. Speaking to your boss could help focus you in the right direction for what would be most beneficial to yourself and the organisation you work for. Take a look at Google Digital GarageOpenLearnFutureLearn, and HubSpot Academy.

Although it has been reported that there’s been a shift from people pursuing technical skills to personal development and wanting to learn about stress management, resilience, and personal productivity, when exploring which online courses were being searched for the most on Google, it was revealed that business, marketing, and digital marketing had received an influx of interest after lockdown, whereas searches for personal development courses had not. It’s important to remember not to neglect personal development — it’s equally as important as technical skills. Personal development and soft skills are great contributors to the cultural fit of a workplace and how well you integrate with values and other staff members.

You can also use potential free time to develop essential critical skills like time management, initiative, communication, and teamwork. Learning tips and strategies by successful people in the real world can help you integrate new practices, so get looking!

 

Find a hobby

We’ve all got interests that we’d like to pursue ‘if only we had the time’. Well, now we do — and we can boast about them in the dreaded hobbies and interests section of our CVs. Picking up a hobby is another way to show your passion for learning as well as to help employers see you personable and interesting. It’s hard to summarise ourselves in our CVs, and this will certainly add an edge.

A few ideas are:

  • Learn a coding language
  • Learn how to cook
  • Learn an instrument
  • Learn gardening
  • Paint or draw
  • Read books
  • Go for hikes or walks and take an interest in nature

You can also take on hobbies that have a direct link to your career. For example, if you’re a budding solicitor interested in learning about employment tribunals, then law podcasts could help both your interest and knowledge!

 

Establish or improve your online presence

A strong digital presence can be beneficial if you’re looking for a job as well as benefit existing employees in certain industries that are reliant on LinkedIn integration. If you don’t have an account, make one — it can be extremely handy in making connections and networking.

Make sure you tidy up your other social channels and have appropriate privacy settings so that you don’t shoot yourself in the foot with unprofessional images or statuses with inappropriate content and bad language. If this is too much effort, consider setting up separate social media accounts for work.

Follow organisations and professional bodies that are relevant to keep up-to-date with news and insights into your sector. Like, comment, and share posts with colleagues and peers to create relationships and a sense of support.

 

Perfect your CV

After all this is done and you feel like you’ve achieved your goals and developed as an employee, include it on your CV to get your foot in the door for interviews or to get you ahead of the game for that promotion you’ve been after. Check out this guide to make your CV include all the relevant information and stand out.

 

Although it can be easy to slip into a lethargic and unproductive routine, this time can be a catalyst for your career to kickstart and motivate you to work even harder.

Improving Brand Loyalty: What You Can Do to Keep Your Customers

Illistrated concept of a large hand holding a magnet that is attracting customers towards it

Customer loyalty is crucial, we know that very well. In our eyes, loyal clients are among the most precious things for a business. This said they are sadly not always easy to keep hold of.

Some may believe that customer satisfaction equates to loyalty. However, that is not necessarily the case. Oftentimes a client will walk out of your shop with a big smile on their face, happy with both the service and the purchased product. However, that doesn’t mean they will be knocking on the door in the near future too. More often than not, clients are on the hunt for quality products at an affordable price. Chances are that if your competitor is offering a similar item at a lower rate, customers will give them a go instead.

What is more, retaining existing customers is good for your finances. Indeed, focusing on keeping current clients is less costly than trying to attract new ones. Moreover, leveraging loyalty will help you both learn more about your consumers and understand what marketing strategies you should adopt.

Ultimately, clients are constantly on the look for a brand that they can truly trust. A 3CInteractive research found that 64% of companies have registered a rise in loyalty memberships. Hence, we explore how to bridge the gap between business and consumers by outlining the strongest customer loyalty trends.

 

Trends in customer loyalty marketing

There are loads of possibilities that you may want to consider when trying to enhance your brand awareness. If you want to be on everybody’s lips, it is wise to be on top of the latest B2C marketing trends. Let us take a look at some of the best strategies out there.

 

Use direct mail

There is simply no hiding that direct mail marketing offers an array of benefits. When sending out marketing emails, there is a possibility that your messages will end up going straight to the spam folder, never to be seen by your potential customer.

Digital printing and direct mail marketing, instead, will reliably get to your audience’s front door. Once it has slid in, it is estimated that your direct mail will stay in the house for about 17 days. With new features such as QR codes and incorporated landing pages, you can provide customers with exciting virtual experiences too.

 

Personalise

Let’s get straight to the point: if you are not personalising your B2C marketing and addressing your customer by name, you need to start doing so immediately. With a mailing list at your disposal, there is really no excuse.

Why not buy industry-led data to entice your consumers and enhance their loyalty? Studies suggest that more and more people are happy to share their data to benefit from personalised items and direct mail. After all, there are several reports showing that many consumers have signed up to loyal membership programs, generally incentivised by hyper-personalised advertising.

 

Set up exclusive loyalty programs

Who doesn’t like receiving exclusive treatment? Loyalty memberships are the perfect opportunity to pamper your faithful customers. If you want, you could also add a special bonus to spoil your long-term clients even more.

As for the younger generations, over 75% of millennials would be more than happy to pay a joining fee in return for exclusive content from their favourite brands. This suggests, ultimately, that customers are willing to spend a little more to benefit from closer interaction with the companies they like. So why not make space for loyalty memberships in your future B2C marketing strategies?

 

Give AI a go

Do you want your brand to be in step with the times? Augmented reality and chatbots are viewed as the future of marketing and can boost your image in the eyes of your customers. As already mentioned, direct mailing featuring QR codes is a good start. When scanned, they provide consumers with virtual adventures that will leave your audience both surprised and fascinated. Not only that, but it gives you a stronger chance to grab their attention. People are more likely to be intrigued by these compared to display ads.

 

Think about the environment

With consumers being increasingly aware of our planet’s environmental troubles, people will stick to brands that they deem to be socially and environmentally responsible. Therefore, it is no surprise that big businesses are now all striving to offer eco-friendly products. By showing interest in the wellbeing of our environment, not only will you have a positive impact on your surroundings, but you will also improve your consumer loyalty through marketing.

 

How to improve consumer loyalty

The list of things you can do to improve consumer loyalty is endless. But one of the fundamental aspects of B2C marketing is transparency for your clients. What else can you do?

 

Reliability

Reliability is an effective way to keep hold of your existing customers. Don’t make promises if you will struggle to keep them. For instance, do not state on your direct mail that you are available 24/7 if that is not the case. Instead, promote services you can actually carry out – consumers will appreciate it and keep coming back for more.

 

Attention to detail

Make sure that your direct mail copy and design always look the best that they can. Misaligned text, spelling mistakes, or out-of-focus images will have a huge impact on your brand – and certainly not a positive one. Therefore, ensure to double-check every detail before sending out mail to your customers.

 

Rewards for clients

Why not reward your customers from time to time? We all appreciate a small discount or surprise every so often. With a discount voucher in their hand, people are more likely to pay your business another visit. But rewards are not only limited to coupons. You can build on your relationship with clients by sending out ‘thank you’ cards too. A simple but sweet gesture, these are tokens that people are bound to remember.

 

Human touch

Yes, digital marketing can reach a wider audience. But physical mail is more memorable. By delivering mail with your name and signature at the end, customers will be reminded that there is a real person behind the brand. Knowing this, they’ll have an increased interest and there may even be the chance of a response.

At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide how you want to retain those loyal customers that love your products and services. We hope, however, that these loyalty marketing trends will give you an idea of how to strengthen your relationship with your clients.

What to Do If Your Business Vehicle Gets Involved In a Semi-Truck Crash

Personal Injury

Commercial vehicle accidents are not an easy situation to be involved in. Not only will it disrupt your business workflow and operations, but you’ll also need to handle and go through the fundamental steps of smoothening the semi-truck crash. With so many things involved in such a process, it could be pretty overwhelming to undergo everything, especially if you’re at a loss on what to do.

It’s time to prevent that from happening, so it’s wise to get yourself familiar with how to handle semi-truck crash cases. After all, commercial truck accidents are common anywhere. The key is finding a reputable lawyer from a pool of truck accident attorneys and familiarize yourself with the actions to take when caught in this unfortunate situation.

It’s best to follow these steps so you can protect your rights during a semi-truck crash.

 

1. Report the Crash

Anyone involved in a semi-truck accident shouldn’t escape but rather stay until the accident gets reported since it’s crucial to take the necessary actions right after the crash’s impact.

When you park your vehicle to speak to the other party, you should right away call 911 and report the incident. You may also contact the state highway patrol. As soon as an officer arrives, they will inspect the situation, fill out an accident report, and instruct you on what to do next. To ensure that you have records in case you need to use them as evidence, request a copy of the accident report if you have to go to court later.

Additionally, before putting your car on the side of the road, turn your hazard lights on and put cones around your semi-truck to inform other vehicles that you’re caught up in an accident. Doing so will make you a responsible driver and help others navigate the growing traffic.

 

2. Document the Scene

Another crucial step to take is to document the scene. First of all, take as many photos as needed. A picture of a semi-truck accident scene is the best way to demonstrate its severity. Ideally, this should be immediately done after an accident or as soon as possible afterward. If you have forgotten to take photos during the crash scene, you can still do so at least before you admit your car into the repair shop.

Take pictures of all the vehicles involved, the license plate numbers, the impacted surfaces, and all the damages incurred in the accident. You may also take photos and videos of the injuries if anyone sustained any.

Aside from photos, some necessary documentation details include contact information of everyone involved in the car crash, including notes on the external conditions like weather, road situations, etc.

If the weather affected drivers’ visibility or the road was slick, it is essential to take photos to use them as evidence. You should also ask other parties for their name, contact number, address, email, insurance company, policy number, and license number. Whether you’re a startup business using a specialist vehicle or a large-scale established business using a truck, it’s essential to take proper documentation of the scene.

 

3. Seek Medical Treatment If Necessary

Even if you don’t appear injured after an accident, you must seek medical attention. This ensures that you’re safe and healthy despite the traumatic experience. You may not feel pain or notice injury initially because of your adrenaline, but there could be possibilities that they may occur a few minutes or hours later.

If it’s not necessary to go to emergency room, then at least contact your family doctor and get yourself checked. Seek advice from a medical professional to see if you require any treatment. You may be unable to seek compensation for injuries if you do not seek medical treatment or follow through with the recommended treatments.

 

4. Communicate With Your Personal Injury Lawyer

Hiring a trusted attorney can get you the compensation you deserve after a truck accident. These professionals specialize in helping car crash victims to receive compensation that’s rightfully theirs.

A person who has been hurt or has a damaged vehicle already has enough to worry about. So, it’s best to hire a lawyer who can assist you every step of the way.

It’s also best to consider some things before hiring an attorney. You can consult some free of charge or ask for some references from friends and families. Just make sure to keep in touch with an experienced and approachable lawyer who knows all the nuts and bolts of semi-truck crash accidents.

 

Conclusion

Large or small, truck accidents still require severe and immediate actions. In a semi-truck crash claim, resolving the issue on your own is virtually impossible due to so many parties involved. Hence, hiring a personal injury lawyer who can work alongside you in this challenging situation is often recommended.

Along with your acquired documents, evidence, and crash report, you can work with your semi-truck crash attorney and plot for the best ways to deal with the matter professionally and rightfully so.

Navigating the 2021 Christmas Party: Top Tips for a Covid-friendly Celebration

Work Christmas Party

Matt Ephgrave, Managing Director at Just Eat for Business, offers advice on how to organise cancel-proof Christmas parties in the face of rising infection rates

 

If the pandemic taught us anything, it’s the importance of adaptability. The way we participated in modern life changed before our eyes – five day commutes were swiftly replaced with Zoom meetings and our local shop became the furthest destination we could travel to.

It is no wonder we were all looking forward to the incoming office Christmas party, a taste of the pre-pandemic life we have all missed. However, with rising infection rates and the potential spread of a new variant, many companies including Google and Facebook have decided to cancel.

For the parties still going ahead, organisers should be sensitive to the differing needs of their employees. Whilst some may feel confident attending an in-person meet, others may choose to celebrate with the team from the comfort of their own home. 

Here are some tips on how to create an inclusive, cancel-proof Christmas party that can be enjoyed by all, no matter where they’re based. 

 

1. Anticipate technology failures to keep the event running seamlessly 

Technology blunders are on the most part unavoidable, and after nearly two years of working online most people can empathise with the occasional technical mishap. However, there are a few key provisions that should always be prioritised when organising a hybrid event. The first being a strong internet connection and a top quality video platform, such as Zoom or Google Meet. After all, buffering and pausing doesn’t make for a fun party. 

The second is creating a shared musical experience. A Christmas party isn’t the same without festive tunes, and ensuring virtual attendees have access to the same Spotify playlist as the office allows for everybody to enjoy the festivities together. 

 

2. Plan activities that bring everyone together, no matter where they are celebrating

Incorporating live, in-person elements with virtual ones need not be tricky, think cupcake decorating, cocktail making, or quizzes. Shared experiences are the essence of hybrid Christmas parties, so organisers should prioritise an activity that the entire team can get involved in. 

Allocating time for in-person guests to catch up over mulled wine and simply enjoy each other’s company will help keep attendees engaged during the virtual aspects of the evening. Organisers should make sure those at home aren’t left to their own devices by arranging a Zoom pub quiz or breaks for guests to order their food of choice. 

 

3. Establish a dress code

Whilst cosy jumpers and tracksuit bottoms may be the unofficial uniform for those working from home, guests should be encouraged to dress up for the occasion in order to create a fluid party experience from those mingling in real life to those behind their screens. After all, it has been scientifically proven that getting dressed into your favourite party dress is sure to lift your spirits.



4. Ensure hybrid guests are treated to a shared meal experience

Where possible, the hybrid party should mirror the traditional in-person experience. Replicating the shared meal experience is a good start – if the office is being treated to take away pizza, WFH staff could be sent an allowance to simultaneously order food from their favourite local italian joint.

 

5. Ask office attendees to co-operate with some Covid safety rules

Encouraging feelings of ease beforehand is a good starting point when organising a cancel-proof event. Organisers should implement safety guidelines such as proof of a negative test result in order to create a safe and considered environment. It is important to let your staff know that the event is being organised with their health and safety in mind – a simple reassurance could be the make or break for people choosing to opt out of the party.

 

6. Keep it short and sweet

Knowing when to call it quits on the virtual party is important for WFH guests. After all,  we have all experienced Zoom fatigue at one point or another during the pandemic. Don’t forget to offer your virtual guests goodie bags for when they log off, ideally containing identical contents to the ones offered at the venue.

After a difficult eighteen months, this year’s Christmas party is perhaps needed more than ever. Companies looking to treat their staff to a celebration for all their hard work and achievements throughout the year shouldn’t be dismayed by the prospects of a hybrid party, as long as it is organised with these six key tips kept in mind there is no doubt it will be a huge success. 

The Contacts You Need as a Small Business Owner in 2022

SME Owner

The day a person decides to start a business can be a momentous one. Many will quit jobs, cash in savings, take risks and put themselves in a position to be the captain of their destiny. It’s a huge undertaking and carries many risks and rewards beyond the prospect of supporting yourself financially and without management looming over you.

In addition to the entrepreneur, however, are a host of people who they’ll rely on for all sorts of support. Some provide emotional help for dealing with the stresses and strains of being a small business owner. Others will offer professional guidance or services. Much like a suspension bridge, missing any one of those links can cause a lot of difficulties. Knowing who you need around you to get the best out of your business journey. 

 

Speak to my lawyer

In reality, legal trouble is something you’ll want to avoid whatever size or stage your business is in. They’re not incredibly business-friendly, taking a lot of time and resources to see through a full legal process. SMBs are driven by consistent cash flow, unlike large corporations. Even before you get started, a lawyer can help you figure out what sort of business you’ll want to register as and the taxes you’ll pay. If you’re a sole trader – say a skilled professional working on hazardous sites – operating somewhere in the UK, you’re at risk of accidents. Knowing personal injury solicitors in Ireland, Wales or England is critical, due to the complex, detail-oriented nature of personal injury claims. Make sure you’ve got a lawyer who understands your regional base of operations, the laws you’ll need to abide by and the administration you’ll need to carry out to stay compliant. 

 

Counting on someone

Your accountant is going to have a deep knowledge of your business and what will be necessary to stay both financially sustainable and also on the right side of the taxman. Accountants are typically trusted advisory bodies as much as professionals; they’ll be able to help you plan future projects and expenditures, for example buying new equipment or hiring new employees. 

 

Lending Lessons

Money can come and go for small businesses. Many external factors can have an impact on demand and can result in cash flow being difficult to guarantee. What’s more, business loans can be the only way for many owners to get started affording things like premises and initial materials. It’s good to look for an institution that’s business-friendly; as to whether you need loans or not, a checking account is the minimum any SMB needs to pay and be paid.                                              

Family and friends are perhaps the most important of all. You’re going to face many challenges as a new business and will have to call upon a lot of different people for support. Whether it’s figuring out your next steps to sell your product, or simply needing to vent after a long week, it all helps you on your way. Because building a business, like so many worthwhile things, can’t always be done alone. 

Embracing Change, Creating a Workplace of Contentment

Happy worker

By Nicole Alvino, Co-founder and CSO, Firstup

5 steps to employee engagement and development in a world of hybrid working

Remote working has been a necessity in recent months, but as we emerge from the deeper grips of the pandemic and employees begin their return to their office or work in a hybrid way — we shouldn’t underestimate, that despite the flexibility that working from home offers, that for some being in the office is hugely valuable.

We recently conducted research on employee wellbeing, and communication in the workplace and found that in the UK around 40% of those surveyed, would prefer to go into the office every day — with the youngest age group needing the office more. Indeed, the global study of 23,105 workers found that globally 23% of those who most regularly worked in an office felt more valued, and got more attention from managers than their home-working peers.

This correlation between being valued, and being in an office environment makes sense. And for the younger generation, there’s a real level of developmental need that being in an office nurtures. Being surrounded by colleagues all working to a similar goal, working within a team that encourages collaboration and enhances relationships, whilst also creating a business culture that becomes endemic in the organisation. 

Having a working space that allows for productivity has also been key, and that’s where the younger generation who may still live with parents, or share with housemates have been most affected by the pandemic. Hubble’s recent “Shall we ditch the office” report found in its survey of 1000 UK employees, that Gen Z was the most ‘pro-office’ age group, whilst Gen Z and Baby Boomers were the most ‘pro-remote’. It found that the younger generation, the Millenials and Gen Z-ers, not only missed the modern perks of the office, but 37% of the Gen Z-ers missed the office as a place to do quiet focused work. They also found they were more productive in the office compared to their older colleagues.

Working from home clearly isn’t for everyone. A recent survey by Harris found that 80% of employees who have worked from home during the pandemic would like to continue to do so, but a whopping 57% actually felt enthusiastic about the prospect of returning to their normal place of work. This paints an interesting picture, it’s clear there is an undoubted enthusiasm for getting back into the office after being isolated at home for months, but also that maintaining work/life balance has become central to our lives, and was only highlighted during these past months. With maintaining an attachment to home now becoming a key focus for many employees, a McKinsey report found that unsurprisingly 50% of the employees surveyed felt that they’d like to work from home or remotely at least three days a week.

Embracing this change has become imperative for many organisations, to not only retain employees but to make sure their needs are being met. Offering choice, whilst supporting the needs of different age groups will be compelling reasons for employees to stay or leave.

So with hybrid working set to become the norm, how can employers ensure that all the benefits that come along with office-based working are readily accessible and communicated to those working remotely? And how will communications play a role in ongoing employee wellness and development?

Employee communication and engagement have never been more important than today. Whatever generations your employees span, these differing needs must be met. Personalisation will be key, and an internal communications strategy that takes into account differing work environments will need to be considered.

As we embrace hybrid working, human resources and internal communications teams are realising that their digital employee experience (DEX) strategies must be built around the switch. The ability to offer an equally slick and fulfilling experience to all employees, no matter whether they are home, deskless or in the office will be critical to attracting and retaining talent.

With that in mind, here’s our guidance on the key steps organisations should take to successfully bridge the gap between home and the office:

 

  1. Ensure all employees experience the company culture fully, whether at home or in the office: In a hybrid working environment the Digital Employee Experience, or DEX, is more important than ever. There are many things that a company can do in order to develop that virtual culture and facilitate those human connections – regardless of where an employee is based. Be it virtual coffee breaks, team building sessions that involve a virtual tour of Machu Picchu, or simply regular opportunities for employees to provide feedback – it just needs to be intentional and considered from the employees’ perspective. Create a sense of community even among a distributed workforce by sharing employee stories, successes and personal accomplishments.
  2. Ensure work/life balance is accounted for: Now more than ever we seem to be ‘always on’, and while that may have short-term benefits for productivity, it is not sustainable – and eventually will have a distinctly negative impact. it is important to set out clear guidelines for hybrid working and drive behaviours from the top – not just allowing, but encouraging employees to switch off digitally. For example, limit online meeting times, build in time for breaks, and reduce the number of daily priorities.
  3. Personalised experiences create value: using tools to personalise the digital experience based on data including their role, location and preferences will be key. A digital assistant providing continuous access to information, via every endpoint, channel or device they use will ensure only relevant communications are received. 
  4. Content is key: Use curated content to keep your employees connected to the company and ensure they are aligned on your business strategies, objectives and brand positioning. This is the content you might until now have distributed through traditional channels such as printed newsletters, magazines, postcards and flyers. But with electronic messaging, you can easily use segmentation and targeting to ensure employees only receive the information they need, helping them cut through the noise and focus on what’s important.
  5. Communicate frequently: Employees want their organisations and leaders to provide frequent and authentic communications. When employees feel ‘in the know’ and part of the organisation’s mission and vision they are more engaged. Businesses should communicate frequently and authentically. Consistent and frequent communication is the key to change management and employee engagement.

 

Instead of worrying about the location of employees, organisations need to focus on their communication strategies that bridge both types of workers. By building leader-employee relationships, providing opportunities for personalised two-way communication, sharing updates frequently, and using relevant communication channels engagement and employee nurturing can be maintained whether they’re in the office or not. As we embrace this change to a more hybrid model of working, employee engagement should not be impacted using the right technology and tools available to us today.

4 Ways to Put Your Business On a Path to Sustainability

People discussing

The word ‘sustainability’ used to be a vague term, but businesses have evolved. Whether it’s addressing climate change or diversifying their workforce, these companies and businesses have created ways to be sustainable.

Car manufacturers, for example, have taken steps to produce energy-efficient and fuel-efficient engines to reduce pollution emissions. Tesla uses rechargeable batteries as a way to fuel their vehicles. Other car manufacturers like Hyundai, Kia, Nissan, among others, have also followed.

Another example is Nike. The leading sports apparel manufacturer has also moved towards sustainability by being transparent with its supply chain and production practices. They also help reduce waste by using post-consumer recyclable materials in some of their products. They’ve also developed an app where you can compare the environmental footprint of different types of fabric.

 

A Sustainable Business

Achieving a sustainable or ‘green’ business isn’t supposed to be complicated. It’s about looking into products and services in your company and thinking about their impact on the environment. Looking inward and assessing existing policies and strategies is already one step towards being sustainable.

There are different strategies you can take to create a sustainable business. Below are some of the ways you can put your business on the path of sustainability:

 

1. Reduce Carbon Footprint

In a factsheet published by the Center for Sustainable System from the University of Michigan, the industries below contributed the following percentages of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States: 

  • 28.9% from the energy industry
  • 27.3% from the transportation industry (where 23% comes from road transportation and 2.4% from air transportation) 
  • 10.3% from the manufacturing industry (where 7.9% comes from overhead allocation and 5.6% from industrial processes)

One way of reducing your carbon footprint is to limit the overproduction of goods and start using recyclable materials. By developing strategies to consume less raw materials, you can contribute to the decrease in demand. You can also encourage consumers to practice recycling instead of throwing their trash away and contribute to the global waste problem.

Another way of reducing carbon footprint is to use renewable energy like solar power. Airis Energy Solutions’ solar power in Miami and other similar solar power providers can help reduce your monthly expenditures by helping you save more on your energy bill. Using energy-efficient lighting can also help reduce your electrical usage and, subsequently, reduce your energy costs.

 

2. Rethink Company Policies

The challenge for some businesses is adjusting to the new normal. More employees prefer working from home instead of going to the office, so they don’t have to worry about commute times.

In a study by the U.S. Census Bureau, an average worker travels 26 minutes to work, 20% longer compared to the 1980s, which is 21.7 minutes. These long commutes have hampered employee productivity and contributed to mental stress.

Before, employees had to wake up early, prepare, and compete with other workers rushing to get to their respective offices on time. Now, employees only have to worry about waking up on time for work. 

Another benefit of working from home is it could save you money from leasing building spaces. These savings could be transformed into additional employee compensation or perks.

 

3. Practice Corporate Social Responsibility

Setting up policies to address a social issue is already part of most companies’ Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). There is no ‘right’ way in developing CSR, but companies strive in their own way to contribute to the public.

For instance, Microsoft aims to have Zero Waste by 2030. To date, they’ve reduced and eliminated waste by reusing materials, reducing sourcing, and recycling. All of their waste is treated with environmentally responsible methods. Coca-Cola is also aiming to reduce its carbon footprint by 25% by 2030. 

CSR creates a positive image for your company and can also serve as free marketing. You and your staff can join clean-up drives during weekends which can also be a form of camaraderie between co-workers. Other CSR strategies include:

  • Environmental Responsibility

You don’t need to restrict yourself to joining clean-up drives to be environmentally responsible. Simple steps such as reducing wasted water or recycling used paper can help you move towards greater environmental responsibility.

Google, for example, has demonstrated their commitment by investing in renewable energy sources and sustainable offices. On the other hand, Facebook has achieved their goal to transition to 100% renewable energy last year. They’re now committed to reaching net-zero emissions by 2030.

  • Ethical Responsibility

Without your employees, your business won’t be a success. The employer-employee relationship should be nurtured. Providing them with fair compensation and other benefits is the right thing to do. Their workplace should be free from harassment and discrimination. They should also be fully equipped to deal with and avoid potential hazards.

Starbucks, for instance, has developed ways for employees to have a voice by getting their feedback and suggestions heard. They’ve also diversified their workforce by attracting and employing workers from various communities. They pay special attention to gender issues and have barred discrimination against gender in the workplace.

 

4. Be Transparent

Transparency builds trust not only with your employees but with your investors and consumers as well. It can lead to high employee morale, taking feedback as the driving force to improve processes and policies. However, you don’t want to be ‘too transparent’ with your business to the point of jeopardizing your business.

In the internet age, almost all information is available at our fingertips with just a simple online search. Some of these keywords, however, lead to confidential information from unsecured websites.

In a report from Built With regarding CMS usage, 35.63% of websites today use WordPress, and this CMS can be hosted on any server as long as it has MySQL and PHP. In a simple Google search query, “index of /wp-content/” will return over 5 million pages. These pages show what is stored inside the “/wp-content/” of a website running under WordPress.

Some websites have non-disclosure agreements with other companies. Documents such as invoices show what was agreed between parties and other sensitive information. Again, a simple Google search query “index of /wp-content/ intext:invoice intext:pdf” will return over 15,000 pages showing invoices in PDF form that is stored in the website’s “/wp-content/” folder.

While tech companies like GitHub and GitLab allow companies to make their source codes available to the public and encourage developers and other users to collaborate on features and fix critical flaws through the ‘Free and Open-Source Software’ project, there are companies that were not spared from data breaches. For example, LinkedIn, an online platform for career development and professional networking, suffered a data breach twice. The latest June 2021 breach affected 700 million users.

 

Final Thoughts

Even though sustainability is a vague term in business, it can provide significant benefits to your company. Reducing carbon footprint, including CSR as part of your company’s priority to address social issues, listening to your employees’ suggestions and feedback, and building trust are a few ways to be more sustainable and contribute to the welfare of future generations. With a lot going on today, businesses can help reduce chaos through comprehensive planning and concerted effort.

How to Create a Healthy Indoor Environment In Business Premises

Work Environment

The intentions behind building cost-efficient workspaces are commendable. It’s proof of business owners’ growing understanding of the impact of interiors on team members’ productivity and morale.    

However, the true success of building these offices will highly depend on its outcome, including the quality of the indoor environment. When an office’s interiors are properly designed, this can significantly impact your occupant’s well-being. Conversely, poorly constructed stations could pose certain risks that could harm both your business and employees.

 

Consequences of a Poor Indoor Environment

Although these weather-proof commercial buildings were built to conserve energy, these structures aren’t free from flaws. Since most of these workspaces are enclosed, air conditioners will be required to boost comfort and cool the area. 

With no adequate ventilation systems, these air-conditioned offices could trap contaminants and pollutants inside. Exposure to this poor air quality may aggravate allergic reactions and trigger certain respiratory diseases and breathing ailments. When managed improperly, this could affect your staff’s health and work performance.  Thus, this contradicts the purpose of creating these buildings. 

On the other hand, thermal and lighting conditions might also influence your employee’s productivity. For example, a minor deviation in thermal comfort and lighting might make employees either distracted or sluggish

 

Steps to Take to Improve Indoor Environment In Workspaces

However, there are practical strategies you could do to improve your business’s indoor environment. For example, you could invest in a commercial air purifier that can filter out the cold and flu germs surrounding your commercial spaces. Airfixture provides the best commercial air purifier and can decrease indoor air pollution to ensure the health and safety of the occupants. 

Apart from having an air-cleaning device in your business premises, below are other steps that you can take to create a healthy indoor environment.

 

1. Assess Your Premises

Create a checklist for periodical maintenance and health standards in your office. Evaluate whether or not your newly purchased office equipment, materials, wall painting, and displayed aesthetics aren’t emitting harmful chemicals.  This might endanger you and your employee’s health in the long haul.

Keep in mind that a poor indoor environment can manifest itself in your employee’s performance. For instance, your staff might have problems focusing on a task or are feeling lethargic most days.  These signs might be consequences of a poor indoor environment.

While at it, make sure to check the humidity level in your spaces and look into pipes for leaks and faulty systems.  Doing all these maintenance checks can reveal problematic areas. Thus, it would help you identify whether or not this is a symptom of a bigger issue.  This could assist you to check whether or not the building is running efficiently.  Also, it creates a better solution to save money and prioritize your staff’s well-being.

 

2. Control the Source

After your maintenance checks, prioritize eliminating materials that are increasing poor indoor air quality. Pesticides, cleaning products, fabrics, certain aerosol products, solvents, combustion sources, and even furniture pieces could gradually release chemical compounds into the air.

You might think that storing these products in safer areas is enough. However, some of these products could still release harmful gases into the air even when not in use. Hence, declutter and get rid of these items immediately.

Preventing such chemicals from entering your office and eliminating the source of these contaminants could help you minimize pollution. This step is crucial to keep track of the air quality on your premises and create a healthier indoor environment.

 

3. Opt for Safer Alternatives

After eliminating these harmful substances, look for alternatives. You could switch to eco-friendly and organic products that are safer for your occupants. Not only are these more budget-friendly, but these products are also much sustainable for the environment.

As an example, you may choose to replace your cleaning supplies with non-toxic materials. Upon shopping for new pillowcases, focus on organic fabrics, such as cotton and linen. These are hypoallergenic materials and are suited for sensitive skin. You can also look for goods that have been ethically tried and tested to ensure their safety and efficacy. 

If you can, refrain from plastics and treated materials that might be potential sources of harmful chemicals. By reading up and making conscious shopping choices, you could prioritize the health and safety of your occupants.

 

4. Keep Your Premises Clean

Excess moisture can be a perfect environment for mold and bacteria to thrive, posing serious risks and making your staff sick. With this in mind, make sure to have scheduled maintenance and janitorial clean-ups on your premises. You may create workplace policies such as clean as you go, clear away clutter, clean up spills, and throw litter before it starts to pile up.

Remediating the damage and harm brought by mold and mildew is quite pricey compared to preventing their growth. Thus, make sure to keep your premises tidy and germ-free. Notably, an office that’s free from the presence of mold, dust, and contaminants may help you ensure your occupants are inhaling clean air. 

 

5. Introduce Fresh Air

Apart from keeping your areas clean, scout for other ways to increase the indoor air quality in your offices. You can look into an array of options that could help you minimize the presence of particles and pollutants in the air.

You may also buy and display a few indoor plants on your premises. Studies have shown that houseplants can absorb harmful substances from the air, especially in closed spaces.

Aside from minimizing the presence of toxins in the air, plants can transform your space and make it more inviting. Investing in a few greeneries may also make your workspaces visually satisfying, which can boost comfort and aesthetics.

 

Final Thoughts

When building cost-efficient offices, it’s important to consider the health requirements and interior design standards.  This is to ensure the newly-built facility provides value to you and your occupants.  If you’re planning to upgrade your business’s premises, follow the steps above to help you create a well-suited environment that could contribute to your employee’s morale and performance.

4 Methods to Boost Productivity in Remote Businesses

Remote Business

Remote businesses aren’t new, but these companies aren’t fairly prevalent. Regardless, this work setup is here to stay as leaders have recognized its benefits to their employees and long-term profitability.

 

Benefits of Operating Remotely

There can be benefits in allowing your business to run remotely. For instance, gathering a pool of applicants is no longer geographically limited. This convenient arrangement can allow you to hire talented individuals worldwide who you can add to your existing team. This remote setup could also reduce overhead costs associated with renting a building. 

Among all the perks linked to operating remotely, an increase in staff productivity is the one that’s highly sought after by businesses. Employees value the autonomy and flexibility that this modern work setup offers. Given enough freedom to complete their tasks and achieve work-life balance, it could be easy for employees to stay engaged. Certainly, businesses will benefit from team members who are eager to work.

 

Increasing Remote Business Productivity

While it can be easy to consider operating remotely, you also need to remember that remote work may also negatively affect your employee’s performance. Because of this, it’s important to implement certain strategies and leverage technology to keep your staff engaged despite the physical distance.

For instance, your company might benefit from working with IT specialists from Managed it service in Dallas through Cloudsecuretech and other similar services. These professionals can monitor your networks and prevent issues to minimize system downtime.  Thus, making sure your staff is well-supported while at home.

In addition to this, below are other practical methods to increase productivity in your remote company.

 

1. Communicate Regularly

Working remotely will have its set of drawbacks. Because of this, it’s important to constantly communicate with your employees. You may check-in with their progress and discuss concerns that are affecting their performance at work. Creating a safe space and encouraging your employees to speak up may minimize the stress associated with transitioning to remote work.

Moreover, planned meetings and group gatherings could help you build workplace transparency.  This establishes trust and better accountability with their work. When everyone is accountable for their tasks, this might result in better collaboration throughout the company. This is crucial, especially when maintaining the productivity of your remote business. 

Communication is a key foundation to a solid employee-employer relationship. A solid support could also help you preserve high levels of engagement, which is important when handling large hybrid teams.

 

2. Maximize Modern Tools

Take advantage of modern tools to squeeze productivity out of your staff. Equipping your team with the right tools could help them adjust to the new setup.

Today, there’s now a plethora of platforms that you may use at your disposal. From video conferencing applications to productivity trackers and project management apps, these innovations can help you bounce ideas back and forth. Also, check if all of you are on the same page and evaluate areas of improvement. All these can strengthen team collaboration and community bonding.

While it could be easy to use many channels, make sure to use those that are only applicable to your team’s needs. You can assign different platforms for specific purposes to stay organized and prevent filling one with overflowing information. This initiative could also keep everything seamless, especially when reviewing and tracking the project’s progress. When all of you can access data and stay updated, you could eliminate the constant need for follow-ups.

Moreover, these modern tools can significantly build solid connections and allow you to get to know new hires. Thus, it can help foster trust despite the physical limitations.

 

3. Provide Feedback

Since all of you aren’t working together in one setting, it’s important to keep your lines open and create a feedback culture in your company. Looking into their performance and discussing this with them will allow your employees to feel well-supported.

Feedback helps your employees identify their strengths and weaknesses. These factors can guide you and your staff in creating tailored strategies to maximize their skills, performances, and productivity.

Alongside providing them with feedback, make sure to recognize their efforts.  Also, celebrate their accomplishments and give constructive criticism to encourage them to conquer their low points.  This will allow them to grow and improve. All these initiatives can certainly influence team member morale, which affects motivation and efficiency. 

Furthermore, feedback could reveal team issues in the workplace. Uncovering these barriers can help you address them and understand where your employees are coming from. When you can eliminate the friction among them, this can potentially strengthen their relationship and boost team performance. 

 

4. Clarify Expectations

Running a remote business could be quite stressful, especially if you’re new at it. While it can be easy to overwhelm your employees with different tasks, it’s important not to clutter their agendas with a bunch of unimportant ones.

The competing demands of your worker’s attention can only disrupt their focus and affect their performance at work.  Thus, this may result in inefficiency. Likewise, trying to achieve unrealistic productivity standards can be detrimental to their mental health. 

Hence, if one team member can’t commit to an important task, ask others to step up to cater to this demand and balance out responsibilities. Set realistic goals so your team can identify the projects to prioritize and those that can be done later. Empowering them to make decisions is key to managing success. This strategy also prevents the frustration of misaligned goals and prevents conflict along the way.

Moreover, most remote businesses adhere to flexible working arrangements. With this in mind, make sure to ask your team’s availability and typical working hours.  Thus, you’ll be able to set your expectations with the turnaround time and completion of projects.

 

The Takeaway

Your team members highly influence the productivity of your remote business. For this reason, it’s important to look into your staff’s needs and recognize their progress.  You must also know the challenges they’ve been experiencing and give them the right tools to support their performance. By prioritizing these, you could create a stronger workplace culture where employees are happy and productive.

6 Signs Your Business Needs a New ERP System

ERP

In today’s technological era, businesses rely on software to efficiently carry out their day-to-day operations. One such system that’s often used by modern businesses is the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, which helps streamline business operations such as supply chain management and accounting. However, like every other technology, the ERP system does have a limited shelf-life. Because of this, the ERP system you’re using may no longer be compatible with current technologies, thereby negatively impacting your competitive edge and reducing your productivity. 

So how can you tell if it’s time to change your ERP system? Here’s a guide on the clear signs you should look out for to know if you should schedule to change your company’s ERP system soon.

 

1. No Vendor Support 

One of the most evident signs you should get a new ERP system is when the vendor doesn’t provide you with the support you need. This is crucial because, like any software, the ERP system might suddenly experience an issue you or your staff can’t resolve without help from the vendor. However, if the manufacturer is uncooperative, you’ll be left with a malfunctioning ERP system, leading to increased susceptibility to cyberattacks or breaches, greater downtime, and reduced productivity. 

The lack of vendor support can also leave you with an outdated ERP system that doesn’t meet your business needs. If you’re dealing with such downsides, it’s time to switch to a new vendor like NexInfo’s ERP consulting services. That way, you’ll be sure to get a suitable ERP system with the necessary assistance you need to go through the different stages such as discovery, user training, selection, customization, implementation, and ongoing support. 

 

2. Not Meeting Customer Needs 

Without customers, your business would cease to exist. Therefore, it should be your priority as an entrepreneur to ensure that your customer’s needs are met. However, this can be a challenge if you’re using an outdated ERP system since you won’t have direct access to inventory data, shipping, and billing. This is because the design of old ERP systems can’t offer easy access to information from different parties. They also weren’t customer-oriented, thus forcing your clients to seek professional assistance to obtain any information they need. 

On the other hand, a new ERP system does away with these shortcomings and complexities. It does this by integrating cloud services, enabling your customers to get real-time access to information from anywhere. Without an updated ERP system, your company will lose its competitive edge over other businesses. 

 

3. Functional Limitations of Your Current ERP 

The goal of every entrepreneur is to see their business grow, and this is precisely why they invest in an ERP system in the first place. But as your business expands, so do its core functions, including inventory management, finance, and accounting. In addition, other requirements emerge, including warehouse management system (WMS), mobile solutions, e-commerce, and point of sale (POS). These added requirements can’t be handled by an obsolete ERP system that starts to experience certain functional limitations the older it gets. 

Other functional limitations that strain your existing ERP system include greater technical requirements from vendors, unveiling new products or services, and acquisitions. Due to these shortcomings, you might need to invest in a new ERP system to effectively carry out new tasks associated with your growing business. 

 

4. Your Staff Choose to Work Outside the ERP System 

The primary purpose of the ERP system is to streamline company operations. It does this by ensuring your staff members are working as a team and are on the same page towards reaching the business goals you’ve set. However, this efficiency can’t be achieved if your employees use other programs to generate spreadsheets or non-integrated systems like QuickBooks instead of the ERP software because it can’t handle such tasks. As a result, you’re prone to making errors that lead to inconsistencies and inaccuracies that could lead to numerous expenses issues in the future.

With a new ERP system, these problems will be a thing of the past. After all, a new ERP system will integrate the functions of multiple departments. Therefore, you won’t need separate management tools to run your company, which further streamlines your company’s operations. With that said, you can still integrate other platforms such as QuickBooks into modern ERP systems if you specifically want to use them. 

 

5. ERP System Is Too Complex 

Your staff is vital to the success of your business, so you should always ensure their productivity is optimal. However, they can’t accomplish their tasks with a lousy and complicated EPR system. With outdated or unoptimized software, your employees will have a rough time as they try to navigate and finish their assigned duties on time. This might necessitate you to invest in additional training to help them better understand how to use the ERP software efficiently. It may also lead to high staff turnover, thereby increasing the cost of running a business and negatively affecting the company’s performance. 

A modern ERP software addresses these shortcomings, and it helps improve your employee productivity. This is because your employees won’t have to deal with repetitive processes and extremely slow loading speeds. In addition, newer ERP software has customizable and intuitive interfaces, which further simplifies ease of use and accessibility.

Just remember to take the time to choose a reputable ERP vendor. With a respectable ERP vendor, your staff will be sure to get the necessary training on ERP system implementation. This is vital to encourage adoption by your staff, thereby increasing productivity. 

 

6. It Doesn’t Offer Cloud Computing Capabilities 

Many companies have realized the immense benefits cloud computing has on their operations. Because of this, many companies have opted to use cloud-compatible ERP systems to get better access to online business solutions. But if you’re stuck using an old ERP software, you’ll need to first buy a license and load it onto servers to be able to use such a system. 

With a modern and cloud-based ERP system, you can avoid all these inconveniences as long as you’re connected to the internet. You also don’t need to buy high-performance hardware and licenses constantly, hence lowering your business operational expenses.     

 

Takeaway 

An ERP system isn’t cheap. So, given its cost, many businesses resort to using the software for an extended period without replacing it. However, this isn’t usually recommended because the cost of getting a new one will be much less than the expenses associated with using an outdated and inefficient ERP system in the long term. Keep in mind the clear signs discussed in this article so you’ll know when you should go ahead and get a new ERP system. 

How to Better Manage Your Business Finances

Business Finances

It’s not easy to run a business. Aside from making sure that your business strategy, marketing plan, and management skills are always on point, you also have to anticipate and survive various crises. An insightful post on Forbes notes how the failure rate for small businesses significantly increases as time goes by. In fact, recent data points out that only one in three small businesses will be able to reach the 10-year mark.

So, how can you guarantee that your business thrives and finds longevity?

One way to make sure that your business succeeds is by knowing how to expertly manage your business finances. Failing to stay on top of your business finances can lead to negative cash flow and other money issues. Here, we’ve listed down some tips that can help you secure your business’ financial health.

 

Perfect your budgeting skills

It’s impossible to create a good financial plan if you don’t have a comprehensive and robust budget. To start, you should take note of the current industry standards and forecast all of your business expenses. In addition, you should also make use of budgeting programs such as Centage and Scoro to further organize your business finance. As time goes on, you can hone your budgeting skills and eventually figure out how to create one that is tailor fit to your business. However, it’s important to remember that your budget is more than just a plan for where you spend your money, but rather a structure that allows you to make rational business decisions.

 

Keep an eye on your business credit score

Your business has a credit rating attached to it. This allows lenders and other financial institutions to gauge your creditworthiness in the event that you apply for a business loan. For this reason, it’s important to monitor your business credit score. Not having good business credit will make it harder for you to access financial products such as mortgages, insurance plans, and business loans. A guide to improving your credit score by Petal Card lists down a few tips to help you develop good business credit, such as keeping balances low, always reviewing credit reports, and setting automatic payment reminders. If you don’t want a lender or bank to deny your business, be sure to keep track of your business credit score.

 

Have an emergency fund

As a business owner, you should learn how to build foresight and be ready to go through slow periods. Despite being a very common occurrence in many small businesses, a lot of owners still fail at getting themselves out of this tough predicament. With that said, you should maintain an emergency fund that will allow your business to run smoothly during prolonged periods of financial distress. Inc. Magazine’s article on building a business emergency fund advises that you need to set a monthly goal, cut back on frivolous spending, and make sure that your money is easily accessible when saving up for money for emergency purposes. If you don’t know how much you should stash in an emergency fund, check your budget and look at how much working capital you need per month, then multiply that number by six. That will be enough to cover your business for at least six months during hard times.

In a previous post titled ‘Why Running a Small Business is So Difficult’, we acknowledge that running a small business is no easy task. If you want to find success with your business venture down the line, be sure to heed the advice we’ve discussed above and learn how to be better at handling your business finances.