Let’s Talk Business MARKETING MEANS BUSINESS - Solutions for Small Business
Issue 05 July 2013
The Future of Small Business Research reveals future trends, survival rate and the future for Australian small business
Of all the new businesses started four years ago, almost half are no longer operating.” The report also finds that those who do not employ staff – currently two-thirds (62.2%) of start-ups – are also the most likely to fail.
And, as a matter of interest, The top five industries in small businesses are:
Construction – 21% Retail trade – 15% Property and business services – 19% Health and community – 7% Manufacturing - 8% Other sectors - 30%
NUMBER OF MICRO ENTITIES IN AUSTRALIA The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) estimates that there were around 3 million micro entities in Australia at the start of the 2012–13 financial year, up from around 2.8 million micro entities at the start of the 2011–12 financial year. Micro entities are defined as having a turnover of equal to or more than $1 and less than $2 million in a financial year. Data source: ATO Compliance Program 2011–12 and ATO Compliance Program 2012–13.
By the year 2017, many futurists predict that we will see the fruition of life changing trends. Medical technology may lead to a lifespan of 150 years; niche marketing may lead
“Without better support for small business, only a minority will achieve success.
Right now, today, there is in excess of 1.2 million small businesses in Australia, representing around 96% of all businesses and employing more than 3 ½ million people. *
The McCrindle stated:
to each individual becoming his or her own small business. It will be a totally different world, and small business will have no small part in it. The large companies are gradually fading and the ones replacing them will never even come near the size of the IBM as of today. Mergers of large companies will eventually begin to recede as the market begins to reduced in size. Even with the current financial turmoil, we are seeing the greatest level of activity by sovereign funds and private equity in history. Source: (http://www.standardedge.com.au/ small-business.html) New research has identified which sectors new businesses are most likely to survive in, with healthcare and social assistance sector receiving the best report card. Demographic research company McCrindle Research says start-ups in
healthcare and social assistance have a 64.8% survival rate over four years, financial and insurance services a 59.1% survival rate and rental, hiring and real estate services a 59% survival rate. McCrindle also identifies the sectors in which start-ups are least likely to survive: administrative support services (44.2% over four years), public administration and safety (44.5%), and transport, postal and warehousing (46.5%). “For many Australians, the entrepreneurial dream is still alive, but as demonstrated by the survival rates of new businesses, without better support only a minority will achieve success,” the McCrindle report says. It says of all the new businesses started four years ago, almost half are no longer operating. It finds Tasmania has the highest rate of start-up success at 56%, and the Continued on following page
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Northern Territory has the lowest at 49.7%. The report also finds that those who do not employ staff – currently two-thirds (66.7%) of start-ups – are also the most likely to fail. “Of the new businesses started four years ago, only 46.5% of nonemploying businesses are still in operation, compared with the overall 60.9% of employing businesses.” It says trusts are the most likely start-up legal entity to survive (64.9% survival rate), followed by private companies (54.5%), public companies (52.4%) and partnerships (52.2%). Sole proprietors have a significantly lower chance of survival, at just 40.9%. Providing a snapshot of business in Australia, the report says small businesses make up the majority of the 2.14 million actively-trading registered businesses. Three in five Australian businesses are sole traders and don’t employ any staff, and only one in ten businesses employ more than 20 workers. The report linked the survival of businesses currently in operation to turnover. “The highest business survival rate is for those with a turnover of more than $2 million, where four in five businesses (80.3%) survived over the past four years. Businesses
$200,000 to less than $2 million had a survival rate of 72.4%, those with $50,000 to less than $200,000 had 61.9%, and those with zero to $50,000 just 47.5%.”
found only 43% of Australian businesses have a website. The report found that only 7.5% of all business revenue was generated online, with only 28% of businesses receiving orders and sales online.
Despite the growth in franchises, 97% Limited investment in growth of businesses are independently One in five companies sought business operated. loans or equity in 2012, but only 20% of these were seeking the funds in order to The overall number of businesses in expand and grow. Australia has grown by 3.4% in the last four years, but two in five new For three out of four of these businesses, businesses started four years ago no it was for a short-term cashflow boost in order to stay afloat. longer exist. Survival Rates The survival rates are the lowest in states or territories where the proportion of small businesses is high, such as in the Northern Territory or the Australian Growth industries, start-ups and Capital Territory. survival may reflect the greater The report found the number of This businesses in the mining sector grew by susceptibility of small businesses to the 2.6% in the last year while the major economic downturn during this healthcare and social assistance grew period. by 3.1%. The trend of small business survival Construction continues to be a strong rates across the states and territories sector, with construction companies remained relatively unchanged, with the making up one in every six Australian Northern Territory, the Australian businesses. Capital Territory and Queensland having Thousands of Australian start-ups have the lowest small business survival rates. launched in the last few years. Overall, small businesses recorded the In the 2011-12 financial year there lowest survival rates compared with were almost 33,000 start-ups in the medium-sized and large businesses. professional, scientific and technical services industry, 47,317 new Survival rates were highest in construction businesses, 21,301 new agriculture, where small business financial and insurance services survival rates were closest to the businesses, and 20,012 new rental, survival rates of larger sized businesses, hiring and real estate businesses. followed by mining, services and manufacturing. Australian business online presence Despite the ample opportunities for (Data source: ABS Cat. No. 8165.0.) online growth and sales, the research The report also found that two-thirds of Australian businesses are making less than $200,000 a year with 29% making less than $50,000 a year.
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Use Your Good Habits to Achieve Your Goals (Extracted from an article from Mind Tools) & presented with MT Permission Dennis Chiron Marketing Means Business 0451 184 599 firstname.lastname@example.org Skype: dennis.chiron2
If you've ever played a sport or taken up a new hobby or interest, you know how satisfying it can feel to achieve a significant goal. As well as learning something new, you've changed yourself for the better. That's an empowering thought! Good habits lie behind many of these positive changes. The repeated actions – attending a weekly sports practice, for example – help you to build the change into your daily life. It becomes a habit, and good habits can help you grow, personally and professionally. How Goals Affect Habits: You are far more likely to achieve worthwhile goals if you have good habits. Illustrating this, a recent study suggested that we're not motivated by goals alone. In fact, once we've decided upon a goal, we're more motivated – on a dayby-day basis – by the habits that we have set up to reach it, than by the goal itself. We're also motivated by reflecting on our progress towards our goals. A 2010 study reinforced this: here, researchers monitored people who were trying to form better eating habits. They found that those who were encouraged to reflect on how they were doing, and who adjusted their habits accordingly, were ultimately more successful. Creating Good Habits: Follow these steps to develop good habits in your daily life, and to kick-start positive change. 1. Identify What you Want to Achieve
First, note down your personal and professional goals. You'll need to develop new habits to achieve these goals, so it's important that you're clear about what they are. Now choose one goal, and think about the habits that you'll need to incorporate into your schedule to reach it. What do you need to start doing every day to make this vision a reality? 2. Build Good Habits Into Your Routine Find ways to build your new habit into your routine. Block out a regular time for it in your schedule, so that you can give your positive habit your full attention. 3. Reflect on Your Habits As you progress with your new habit, reflect on how it's working for you. If you're struggling to stick to it, think about why this is. Were you too ambitious? If so, consider setting a more manageable short-term goal to remotivate yourself. Or, if your new habit isn't delivering the change that you expected, reflect on what's gone wrong. You may need to tweak your habit to make sure that it's delivering real change. 4. Develop Self-Discipline A 2012 study showed that it can take an average of 66 days to form a new habit. That makes self-discipline essential. One way to strengthen your selfdiscipline is to create a Treasure Map: a collage or visual representation of what you want to achieve. This will remind you why your new positive habit is so important to you. This can be just what you need to get motivated on days when your enthusiasm is waning.
5. Get Support It can be hard to stick to a new habit when you're on your own. So share your goals with colleagues or friends, and ask them to support you. For example, you could ask them to call you check on your progress. Or, if they share your goal, you could meet them each week to support one another and maintain progress. Numerous apps have been designed to support people trying to develop new habits. For example, Stickk® was developed by Yale economists. It allows you to log a goal, and to appoint a mentor to monitor your progress. A quick search online will reveal similar tools. Key Points Habits are powerful. They bring about change one step at a time, and they help you ensure that these changes become part of your life. However, you're far more likely to reach your goal if you make your new habits part of your regular routine. Follow these steps to make good habits stick: 1. Identify what you want to achieve. 2. Build good habits into your routine. 3. Reflect on your habits. 4. Develop self-discipline. 5. Get support. When you decide to establish new habits in your life, focus on one at a time. If you try to overhaul your entire schedule at once, you'll likely get overwhelmed and quickly revert to old behaviours.
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The Cure For Greed? Despite what Gordon Gekko said, greed may not be good. There's nothing wrong with wanting a better life, with striving to make more money, but greed can take those desires to an unhealthy place. Here's a solution. Dutch artist Diddo Velema has created “The Cure For Greed” "What exactly is greed?" Velema asks. "It is an immutable algorithm hardwired in our DNA, a survival instinct that triggers responses to a constantly changing environment that can turn hostile at any moment?" Meet Hero Man Script doctor by day. Real life super hero by night. At least, that's the idea. David Filmore came to Los Angeles seven years ago from his native Australia to pursue his Hollywood dreams. Then his apartment was burglarized and he later ended up in the hospital with a very serious case of ulcerative colitis. "Both those things, being robbed and realizing life is short, coalesced into the idea to become a super hero," Filmore says. "I want to do nice things in the world. I want to help people." Sure, he could volunteer for charity, help in a soup kitchen, raise money for the homeless. Or he could become a super hero. The Bacon Sundae – A Taste Test Bacon. Ice cream. Hot fudge. Caramel. All four 'major food groups' are now combined into one perfect treat. But is the sum less than its parts? Burger King hopes to find out this
summer, as it rolls out, for a limited time, the Bacon Sundae. The dessert is really a lure to promote new bacon-related burgers as BK continues to expand its menu. Yes, time for another fast food chain to roll out some outrageous food item which includes America's hottest ingredient—bacon. Burger King is hoping the new sundae will be the crowning achievement in its efforts to recapture the #2 title from Wendy's. Source: Burger King 24K Gold Vacuum Cleaner – Cost is Only $999,999
Kindles to human elbows, has created a protective cover for the iPad which can survive all kinds of mayhem, like being tossed from a speeding car.
LinkedIn Report: Top Office Pet Peeves What drives you nuts about your coworkers or staff?
Posted By: Jane Wells
A good vacuum cleaner is a girl's best friend. You either appreciate a vacuum that works, gets rid of stubborn dirt, doesn't scar things up, doesn't small like an old bag of dust, and moves easily … or you don’t. What's so special about this vacuum cleaner? "High-performing 10 amp motor, 14" wide cleaning nozzle with wooden roller brush, anti-marring urethane wheels, lightweight at just under 16 pounds." Oh yeah, it's also plated in 24k gold ... and costs $999,999. Who is the target audience? "Those who simply can” says the Go Vacuum website. Extreme Protection?
Have you ever dropped your iPad and busted it? Seen your $600 or $700 investment fizzle before your eyes? Here's one way to make sure that never happens again. G-Form, a company which makes rugged covers for everything from
Loud talkers? (Yes.) Irritating ringtones? (Yes.) Taking food from the fridge that isn't theirs? (Oh yes.)
LinkedIn surveyed 17,000 office workers around the globe about pet peeves, and discovered what unites us and what divides us. It seems that a vast majority are more irritated if a co-worker takes someone else's food out of the fridge. One co-worker has become so fed up with people taking her milk for coffee that she poured it into a plastic container and made a label saying...wait for it...BREAST MILK.
Brazilians hate office gossip Indians detest ridiculous ringtones The Japanese don't care for office pranks And Germans are most annoyed by "dirty common areas" like the lunchroom
However, across this entire planet, we all agree on one thing. The top pet peeve among all workers is "people not taking ownership for their actions." Four out of five people listed this as their number one gripe.
Dr Tim Baker Managing Director WINNERS AT WORK Pty Ltd
Why Don't We Have A Conversation?
www.about.me/tim.baker Telephone. +61 7 3899 8881 Editor’s Note:
city or the other side of the planet.
Tim is an international consultant, successful author, keynote speaker, master trainer, executive coach, university lecturer and skilful facilitator.
But we seem to rely too much on technology in those cases when a conversation would do.
In a nutshell, he has conducted over 2,430 seminars, workshops and keynote addresses to over 45,000 people in 11 countries across 21 industry groups. Tim points out: “When it comes to performance reviews, my involvement with organisations both big and small, generally hasn't been positive. In fact I regularly hear the following complaints about performance reviews or appraisals:
They are a costly exercise Performance reviews can be destructive They are often a monologue rather than a dialogue The formality of the appraisal stifles discussion The infrequency of reviews Appraisals are an exercise in form filing Performance review are rarely followed up Most people find the appraisal stressful
Have we lost the need for face-to-face conversation in our technologicallydriven world? It use to be that instead of talking to people, we would call them on the telephone. Then we faxed them. Then we emailed them. Now we text them or 'talk' to people through social media. Conversing one-on-one with people seems to be an old fashioned thing to do. Yet the most powerful way of understanding and influencing people is in face-to-face situations. Granted that is not always possible if the other person we want to converse with is in another
I remember a situation recently where two Engineers working on a complex project sat in a cubic opposite each other. The only thing separating them was a partition. One of the Engineers was upset with the other over some details in the project they were working on together and fired off an angry email to the other. He did this when he could have simply got out of his chair and had a conversation with his colleague to share his concerns. The other Engineer, very angry and defensive about the email, fired off a heated email response and copied in the Project Manager! In isolation this seems ludicrous, but it happens too often in organisations. Managers are reluctant to sit down with their charges and discuss performance standards that have not been met. They rationalise that it will 'open a can of worms' if they confront the team member face-to-face. I am sure you have a host of similar stories from your workplace. Don't get me wrong: I think technology is wonderful and we should be using it to its maximum potential. But it has limitations. Sometimes the best way to communicate is to talk face-to-face with the person concerned. When challenged about this, some managers will then say to me: "I don't have time. I have too many emails that
need answering and meetings to attend". If something is very important we should - wherever possible - discuss it in the flesh. Those of you who commute on public transport, have a close look at all the people on the bus or train this evening on the way home. I'll bet 90% of the people will have their head down staring at a screen of some kind. When these people get home this evening they will be transfixed on another screen, the TV, in between tweets or whatever. I strongly believe we need to teach managers how to have conversations with their staff. The conversations that people avoid are the tough conversations. And these are the conversations they should be having. More often than not, difficult conversations go much better than expected. Managers carry around this fear in their head that the other person will react irrationally. Consequently they avoid the confrontation and send them an email instead. The rationalisation is: We need to document the event. As an alternative, sometimes the manager could make an indirect statement in the next staff meeting, hoping the person that it is aimed at, gets it. I have more to say about this topic in my book: "The End of the Performance Review: A New Approach to Appraising Employee Performance" out in September. The book is based on a new approach referred to as the Five Conversations Framework.
Media Contact: Carol Hanlon, CEO, TCF Australia Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Mobile: 0417 963 231 Improving energy efficiency is a central element of the Gillard Government's Clean Energy Future package because it can help businesses save money on their operating costs while also lowering Australia's greenhouse gas emissions. As a result of the Federal Government’s Commitment, the TCF Australia ONLINE ENERGY EFFICIENCY Training & Mentoring Project is able to offer an extensive range of specialist energy efficiency services to small businesses in the fashion, textile, clothing, footwear, leather (TCF) creative, and associated industries across Australia. Small businesses can register for FREE Online Training Webinars, ONLINE Energy Efficiency FREE ‘ASK AN EXPERT’ Forums and FREE mentoring. For most TCF businesses in Australia, the energy consumption of their suppliers far outweighs their own energy consumption.
Business Opportunities in Energy Efficient Innovation
TCF Australia ONLINE ENERGY EFFICIENCY Training & Mentoring Project manager Carol Hanlon said, “after undertaking extensive research into the upstream and downstream usage within the TCF, fashion and textile industries, did I really realise the extent of energy wasted and as a result the TCF ONLINE Energy Project has developed a massive range of quick and easy ideas to assist small business to conserve energy usage.” “We are recommending that a small businesses can reduce input costs by discussing energy usage with their suppliers, improve sustainability by examining their water and chemical usage, and most valuably being able to discuss innovative energy saving ideas with industry peers by registering for a free mentor”, Carol said.
According to the McKinsey Quarterly in 2008, consumer goods makers (such as fashion garment makers), between 40% and 60% of a company’s carbon footprint resides upstream in its supply chain.
One of the possible upstream manufacturing sector energy efficiency opportunities include reducing peak power consumption.
Upstream supply chain includes raw materials, transport, packaging and manufacturing. For retailers, the carbon footprint can be up to 80%.
The main benefit of managing site-wide electrical loads in this way is a reduction in electricity costs as large businesses are typically charged additional tariffs for the size of their peak electrical load.
Even more significant, however, can be the ‘downstream’ energy usage associated with TCF products. Examples of downstream usage includes energy used to wash and maintain products like clothing over their lifetime.
Businesses could examine their machine scheduling, automatic load control and power factor correction to increase energy efficiency.
Business owners should consider both their upstream and downstream energy usage to and come up with innovative ways to save power.
Also, businesses that use electric motors, pumps and fans in the textile manufacturing industry can make sure that regular maintenance is undertaken, install variable speed drives to better match motor speed with load
requirements and replace v-belts with cog-belts. If the speed of a pump is halved, the flow rate will also be halved, but the input energy required will drop by over 85%. This is because the energy usage of motors is approximately proportional to the cube of flow rate. Another area to improve efficiency in is use of compressed air systems. More than 85% of the electrical energy used by an air compressor is lost as waste heat, leaving less than 15% of the energy converted into useable compressed air energy. To reduce consumption TCF businesses could reduce usage time of compressor systems, reduce the intake air temperature (as a rule of thumb, each 3°C reduction will save 1% compressor energy use) or recover compressor waste heat for other purposes such as space heating, process heat, water heating, or boiler water pre-heating. In a case-study conducted by Georgia Technical Institute (USA), it was found that by reducing air leakage from 12% to 6% and lowering system air pressure by 16 psi, a saving of about US$440,000 annually is expected for a compressed air system operating 500 looms (weaving machines). If the speed of a pump is halved, the flow rate will also be halved, but the input energy required will drop by over 85%. This is because the energy usage of motors is approximately proportional to the cube of flow rate. Continued on following page
Another area to improve efficiency in is use of compressed air systems. More than 85% of the electrical energy used by an air compressor is lost as waste heat, leaving less than 15% of the energy converted into useable compressed air energy.
air extraction systems, natural lighting to supplement or replace artificial lighting, direct solar energy for fibre drying, solar energy for water heating or process energy pre-heating and solar photovoltaic panels and wind turbines for on-site power generation.
To reduce consumption TCF businesses could reduce usage time of compressor systems, reduce the intake air temperature (as a rule of thumb, each 3° C reduction will save 1% compressor energy use) or recover compressor waste heat for other purposes such as space heating, process heat, water heating, or boiler water pre-heating.
There are also many ideas to reduce downstream energy wastage. While the energy usage on the supply side of TCF businesses is often significant, the demand or consumer side often remains even more substantial.
In a case-study conducted by Georgia Technical Institute (USA), it was found that by reducing air leakage from 12% to 6% and lowering system air pressure by 16 psi, a saving of about US$440,000 annually is expected for a compressed air system operating 500 looms (weaving machines). The efficiency of boiler/steam systems can also be improved. Steam systems are often found in textile plants and can account for a significant amount of enduse energy consumption. To reduce energy consumption businesses should ensure that their boilers are regularly maintained, that they are the appropriate size, fouling and pipe scaling should be removed and boiler feed water can be preheated with heat from flue gas. Carol said, “ TCF Australia makes a concerted effort to encourage use of renewable energy sources in small businesses where possible and more importantly to promote to developers to include this aspect in building upgrades”. Textile manufacturers might consider using naturally powered ventilation and
Some areas to examine include garment packaging, labels, hangers, shopping bags, washing and drying requirements. Carol said, “Some ideas that we are promoting is use of care labelling and to include using ‘cold water wash’ and ‘line dry’ instructions on garment hang tag and care labels, and eliminating stockpiles of products in obsolete colours by redyeing the stock to saleable darker colours.” In addition to the direct benefits of reducing energy consumption, the other benefits your business may enjoy include being eligible for government assistance to drive innovation in this area. More information on these grant programs can be found at www.ausindustry.gov.au:
Textile, Clothing and Footwear (TCF) Small Business Program (SBP) Clean Technology Innovation Program To find out more about the Energy Efficiency business advisory services offered, or register for services as part of this project please visit www.tcfaustralia.com/greenenergy or email email@example.com P | 61 8 9479 3777
Geoff Butler FAIM AP, MAITD MACE Principal/Business Improvement & Implementation Specialist Business Optimizers Mobile: 0414 943072 Fax: 3036 6131 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Skype: business.optimizers1
What Defines an Excellent Workplace? There has been an enormous shift in the labour market in the past decade and many businesses have not adapted to the situation they now find themselves in where all staff, and particularly skilled staff are increasingly difficult to attract and retain. In the past Australia has had a doubledigit unemployment rate and employers could survive quite well no matter how they dealt with their team. They held the balance of power in the workplace and were able to dictate workplace behaviour and conditions. This is no longer the case. This situation is now well and truly reversed with critical skills shortages being experienced in many industries. For instance, 70% of Australia’s accounting graduates are going overseas to work within the first three years. This means that when if they return to Australia, they are far more expensive to attract due to their overseas experience. Interestingly whilst complaining about this increased expense, most firms seem to discriminate against candidates who don’t have international experience. In my previous role at one of Australasia’s leading second-tier accounting firms, the primary factor identified to ensure the continued success and growth of the Group was to attract, develop and retain great people. The Executive felt that if we could achieve that one objective the other goals would also be achieved. Having the right corporate culture and becoming an employer of choice is now seen as a major priority as businesses realize that the ‘soft skills’ are the hard
skills to embed and maintain. So what makes some workplaces different? According to a recent Australian study, there are 15 significant factors that differentiate excellent workplaces from generally good workplaces. In excellent workplaces importance is placed on how people feel and what they believe about their workplaces rather than the technology they utilize, the geographic location, industry type or any other factor. Absolutely central was the quality of relationships at work – how people related to each other as friends, colleagues and co-workers. In the excellent workplaces the atmosphere of mutual trust and understanding was overwhelming. Colleagues and workmates supported each other and helped get the job done. Friendship was not the key aspect, but mutual respect and trust were paramount, and this extended to the relationships between managers and workers. So what were the 15 significant factors:
The quality of working relationships – people relating as friends, colleagues and co-workers and supportive relationships that ‘get the job done’.
Workplace leaderships – immediate supervisor, team leader manager or coordinator acts as a role model or ‘captain/coach’ rather than someone who gets in the way.
Having a say – participating in decisions that affect the day-to-day decisions of the workplace.
Clear values – the extent to which people could see and understand the overall purpose and individual behaviours expected in the workplace.
Being safe – high levels of personal safety, both physical and psychological. Emotional stability and a feeling of being protected by the system.
The built environment – a high standard of accommodation and fit out applicable to industry type.
Recruitment – getting the right people who share the same values and approach as the rest of the group.
Pay and conditions – a place in which income levels and the basic physical working conditions (hours, access, travel and the like) are met to a reasonable standard.
Getting feedback – always knowing what people think of each other, their contribution to the workplace’s success, and their individual performance over time.
Autonomy and uniqueness – the organisation’s capacity to tolerate and encourage that sense of difference that excellent workplaces develop. Their sense of being the best at what they do.
A sense of ownership and identity – Being seen to be different and special through pride in the place of work, knowing the business and controlling the technology.
Learning – being able to learn on the job, acquire skills and knowledge from everywhere, and develop a greater understanding of the whole workplace.
Passion – the energy and commitment to the workplace, high levels of volunteering, excitement and ‘wanting to come to work’.
Having fun – a psychologically secure workplace in which people can relax with each other and enjoy social interaction. Community connections – being part of the local community, feeling as though the workplace is a valuable element of local affairs.
Dan Buzer Profit Mechanics 0414 567 188
“How Do You Increase Your Sales, While Charging More Than Your Competition?” The better your business communicates that your products or services deliver benefits the customer wants - in a way that they want it, the higher the price you can ask. When you take the time to understand the needs and wants of your target market you can begin to establish your uniqueness in the market place. A Grade customers prefer to pay more for benefits they want. If your customers baulk at your prices, they either don’t care about the benefits you are expecting them to care about or they simply are NOT A Grade customers. C Grade Customers (Challenging) tend to want cheap, not extra benefits. Think of the car manufacturer, Ferrari. Why is Ferrari able to sell its cars for up to twenty times the price of many cars on the market? Is a Ferrari twenty times faster, more fuel efficient or more comfortable than other cars on the market? The answer is no. So why does Ferrari have the ability to charge twenty times more than most cars? Because Ferrari is unique! Ferrari focuses on developing a reputation of a unique, high quality brand. Their USP of excellence is not only reflected in the cars they sell. Ferrari demonstrate their USP of obsession with quality to every area of their business. For example; who they sponsor
and how they present themselves, their website, letters, brochures, show room floor, customer service and even on their factory floor. Your USP should be so powerful and identify with your ideal customers so clearly that you can confidently “shout it from the roof tops”. Your USP should be on your stationery, signage, vehicles, banners, business cards, radio ads, TV ads, promotional material, etc. Your USP could even be a headline to your advertising. Some successful businesses have even use their business name to share their USP! What is unique about your business that your customers would consider a fantastic benefit? Here are some examples to consider …
Absolutely, positively overnight! Get it first time or get it free! At your door in 30 minutes or it’s free! If we waste your time the appointment is free AND we’ll pay you $50 for wasting your time! Coke is it! 11 Secret Herbs and Spices
Once you have established your USP, the next task is having a strategy to integrate it into your business. Some things to consider are …
How will you insure that your market place knows about the ways that make you unique from your competitors? What systems need to be adjusted to make sure your USP is being delivered consistently?
When will you ‘check in’ with your customers to make sure your USP is perceived as being an important factor to them?
Your USP may stay the same for the life of your business, or it may change regularly. Develop a system to monitor the effectiveness of your USP. Take the time to get this right. It is a key element to your sales, marketing and business success. Your USP is your unique businesses identity. How do I know my USP is not working? Answer … you start competing on price! If your price needs to be dropped to make sales, something is not working the way it should be. The goal is to continually innovate and find ways of adding value to your customers so that they are happy and willing to pay more for the experience of dealing with your business.
If you would like to experience a complimentary review of your business that takes less than an hour, call Profit Mechanics on 1800 838 767 and we’ll rush an easy to understand Business Diagnostic Tool to you! Remember … “Business is More Fun When There’s Profit!” (PSSST … that is our USP J) Dan Buzer
Janelle Macpherson BBusInfMgt, DipMgt, Certified NLP Practitioner , Cert MHSS, Accred Life Coach. Business Owner/Life Coach/Consultant emPOWERful Solutions Sub Company – Express Life Coaching Brisbane North ABN 76 594 335 474 Blue Card: 1161688/1 0409728579 email@example.com http://empowerfulsolutions.com.au/
The benefits of trained employees are:
They do not require supervision as they know how to perform their job.
They produce a repeated quality output leading to economic benefits to the business.
They can quickly adapt to any changes in the business
Fewer rates of absenteeism and turnover.
Investing in Staff Training When you are looking for staff do you only employ those who are already trained and bring skills that they have from another job?
new person wear an “in training’ badge or even an ‘L’ . This is a great way to indicate to a customer that the person is learning.
Or do you see the potential in that person and think with a little training they will become quite productive ?
There are other ways to train staff, for example if you were in a retail shop you could advise your staff that when it is not busy to note the type of products that you sell or to read the brochures that come with appliances etc. I had an experience recently in a newsagency where I was buying a craft magazine. The fellow asked me had I seen the latest craft magazine (similar to the one I had) . I hadn’t and so I decided to check it out and bought it.
I have heard many small business owner/operators say that can’t afford to train staff and when they do the staff move onto another company taking their skills with them. When I have asked them what reason did the employee gave for leaving it usually came down to not enough hours and wanting to work in a permanent job. The reality is, if your business operations only require casual staff then you can’t make staff permanent just to try and keep them . There is an obligation to train new staff members in the rules and policies of the business. Also the basics such as (for retail businesses) operation of a cash register and point of sale systems . It is very frustrating for a customer when the person who is serving them is having trouble using the EFTPOS machine. This can also make the sales person nervous and cause them to make mistakes. I have seen some businesses have the
He also talked me into reserving the craft magazine so that I wouldn’t miss out each month. I of course think that I am getting great service, he of course is making sure he gets a sale each month. Having known the owner I joked, “is this new training” and was advised “it wasn’t”- apparently he got to know his products as was suggested by the owner and he took it upon himself to do the on selling. Another way of training staff is to let them ‘play with the toys’. A lot of businesses allow staff to use the laptops, phones and other devices that are being sold so that they can gain product knowledge to sell them.
A business where the staff is well versed in product knowledge will be a business where customers return to as there is nothing so unprofessional than going into a business asking about a product just to have the person say “I don’t know” or “ I can’t help you, that’s not my section or area”. If a customer has a choice between that business and the one where the staff are trained then they are more likely to choose the latter. Training your staff in all areas of your business is an investment not an impost. The Department of Education, Employment and Work Place relations state that “Investing in training ensures that your employees have the right skills to do their job and improves the productivity and competitiveness of your business.” There are also some financial benefits that can be found on their website. http://deewr.gov.au/ financial-assistance-employers
©Janelle Macpherson 2013.
Ron Court, AMC Dip (Funerals) MQJA JP (Qual)
OH&S Advisor 0419679619 firstname.lastname@example.org
This month let’s have a look at our First Aid kits and decide do we really need one. First what is meant by first aid, well it’s described by The International Labour Organisation as, “The immediate and temporary care of the victim of an accident, with the aim of preventing or reducing an acute threat to the life or health to the victim”.
It also goes on to refer to “the application of immediate measures on the accident site by a person who may not be a physician but is trained in first aid” and “has access to the necessary equipment and supplies”. In summary, workplace first aid may be either the initial treatment of injury or disease given until responsibility is assumed by an ambulance officer, nurse or medical practitioner; or the treatment of minor injuries. What are the aims of first aid? Preserve life; Stop the condition becoming worse; Protect the unconscious; Promote recovery; and Relieve pain and suffering. So I believe if we think back to a time when we had an accident, what did we want to happen first, anything from the above list? It also goes without saying the sooner help starts, the better the chance for recovery. So we need a first aider, this is a person trained in First Aid and is up to date with their training. The person trained in first aid is able to use the skilled application of accepted principles of treatment using facilities or materials available at the time in order, however it is important to remember that we cannot predict a non-related work injury or disease for example a worker may have a heart attack or epileptic fit. First aiders may even have to take care of customers, volunteers and trainees, think of the variety of people that come to your work place and I would like to add here your home. So how to plan for
“Do You Really Need a First Aid Kit in the Workplace?”
your own needs, You must do a RISK Assessment and then put it in your safety management system where the emphasis is on accident prevention. Your Safety Plan will consist of some of the following: Rescue activities; Evacuation procedures; Transport to the nearest hospital or medical facility; Control of fire, gas leaks and flooding; Security; Communication systems and use of interpreters; Contact with relatives in an emergency; and Arrangements for trauma counselling. A developed First Aid policy will consist with information on: Criteria used for determining the number of first aiders; Level of training required for first aiders; Provision of first aid facilities; The provision of information to workers on availability of first aid; and Arrangements for the monitoring and review of all aspects of the service. It is essential that all workers at the workplace have information and instruction on how the system works so they are able to use it without delay when needed. This information can and should be included in induction programs for new workers and remember to have special arrangements to ensure that workers whose first language is not the main language at the workplace also that they understand emergency procedures and where to find first aid. First aid requirements will be determined following your Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Risk Control.
Every person trained in first aid should have access to first aid equipment (and where appropriate, facilities) to carry out their duties. The equipment and facilities to be provided will vary according to circumstances from a small portable first aid kit to a first aid room, but in all workplaces these items should be located to ensure reasonable rapid access when required. First aid boxes should contain a sufficient quantity of appropriate first aid materials and nothing else. The contents of the first aid boxes should be determined by the requirements of the workplace, taking into consideration the hazards that are identified and past records of injuries or illnesses that may have occurred. The contents of first aid boxes should be replenished as soon as is practicable after use in order to ensure that there is always an adequate supply of all materials. Furthermore, if some items deteriorate after a certain period, these will also need to be replaced. Some persons are worried about potential consequences of legal action, In the eyes of the law, assistance given by first aiders to ill or injured workers is expected to be given to the level of their competence. The general legal principle is that the first aiders are expected to act reasonably and prudently with a genuine concern for the best interests of the victim. First aiders have nothing to fear as long as they act reasonably, with caution and follow accepted teaching and protocols. You can get information about your OH&S obligations and other valuable OH&S resources both in hard copy and online from their websites. http:// www.deir.qld.gov.au Always seek independent legal advice on what is applicable to your situation. Ron Court OH&S Advisor 0419679619 email@example.com
Paul GILLMORE DFS Founder and Director Southern Cross Financial Services 07 5429 5561 0402 685 032 firstname.lastname@example.org
GOLD ! Where is the Price Going and Why? Gold retains an allure and a fascination for people worldwide and those of you who watch the price of the precious metal would be aware of the recent falls As you know, gold was used as the support of currencies worldwide before economies moved to trading value or ‘what the market was prepared to pay for it’. This changed the status of gold to that of a ‘defensive asset’ or an asset investors use when they are worried about market trends and conditions. The Problem with Gold Warren Buffet, the world’s best known investor, says” Gold gets dug out of the ground in Africa, or someplace. Then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility. Anyone watching from Mars would be scratching their head”. Warren draws a distinction between the way he views gold (i.e. as an asset) and the way most people view gold . People are quite emotional about gold meaning that their normal critical thinking about owning gold is often abandoned. Warren simply looks at actual value of gold in relation to other assets when determines whether or not to buy gold. The Other Problem with Gold Further, Warren alludes to the other problem with gold which is that it earns
no income. Unlike a blue chip share or an investment in property gold produces no dividend, tax credit, yield, rent, or depreciation – it either goes up or down in value. That’s it ! Three Good things about Gold. Safe Haven: When currencies or a country’s economic growth or World growth are under threat, investors “flee to safety” clearly to mitigate any potential losses. Gold remains a relatively safe asset in times of uncertainty. This is why the Gold price has increased steadily from early 2009 to 2011. Hedging Strategy: We have all heard of hedging our bets and gold is a time honored asset for doing so. In financial terms it is described as a ‘defensive asset’ or a ‘defensive position’. We can simply have a bit of gold in our portfolio in case other assets do not do well. In this case, gold helps to maintain the value of our investment portfolio. Diversification: against volatility of other assets in an investor’s portfolio. Gold Traders An interesting development over the last few years is the proliferation of Gold Buyers in stands in large shopping centres. Naturally they
will buy your jewellery for cash on the spot and of course they will pay you a greatly reduced price knowing they could sell for $1600 to 1700/oz. It’s not illegal it’s simply “Let the Buyer Beware” (caveat emptor) Gold steadily appreciated in value from September 2009 reaching a peak of over $1800/oz in September 2011 remaining around $1600 to $1700 until October 2012, at the writing of this article, gold was between $1200 and $1300/oz. But Why ? The main drivers for gold have been the weak US $, Quantitative Easing (U.S. government stimulating the economy with cash injections) and a flight to safety because of debt, deficit and a poor performing US economy. As the US economy improves, investors will sell down their gold reserves and buy growth assets where they can gain income as well i.e. shares and property. The natural consequence of this is that we expect the price of gold to either plateau after recent falls or fall further. (This article is not investment advice. Please seek individual advice for your personal situation)
Miriam Battersby, dip Multimedia, International Webmaster Certification
Woorim , Bribie island ph 3410 1071 email@example.com http://www.online-biz.com.au
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Online Shopping Explosion - How does this affect you? According to recently released Roy Morgan Research, 50% of Australians are now shopping
There has been a 12% increase in online sales in the past year. Retail sectors involved include Travel, Entertainment, and Fashion. Apparently nearly 10% of our retail spending is online and this is growing. Obviously those retailers who can adjust and trade both online and in traditional ways are the winners. For many retailers there will be downward changes in staff numbers to accommodate this. Good for overheads, bad for the workforce. One factor in the increasing growth of online sales is the rapid uptake of Smart Phones—now at around 50% in Australia. Now more people can access the internet and do so while out of the house. They can easily research an item, check prices and availability , store opening times and buy online from wherever they are. All too convenient. Retailers need to be smart and enter the online market, so that their products can be there to compete with existing online stores. They need to think outside the square to make the physical shopping experience more compelling to the consumer, or move to a warehouse concept.
Online Retail Hints Shoppers
are involved in research online before buying— make it easy for them
Mobile phone use in store is up
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One solution for some who already have a website and don’t want the expense of a redesign using what we call responsive design which detects the device used and rearranges the page to suit, could be to utilise an added mobile application. This is like a mini website which automatically comes up when your url is requested from a Smart Phone. This can be a really quick, simple and inexpensive process. Ask us how!
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