Let’s Talk Business
Let’s Talk Business Back To Basics Business Solutions - Support for Small Business
Volume 2 Issue 19 - June 2014
Small Business and the Older Worker Inside this issue
Cover Story - Small Business & the Older Worker…............…..........2
Something to Say?…...…3
The ABC Approach to Poor Performance Dr Tim Baker ……...............4
Biz Snippets …………….......5
Is There a Need for Training in Your Business? Dennis Chiron .......... ...........6
Improve Your Reputation With Better Stories Geoff Butler ………………..7
Tax Time 2014 Jo-Anne Chaplin ………......8
What Nearly Every Business Have Absolutely No Clue About Dan Buzer ………………….9
To Blog Or Not To Blog Karen Ahl ……..………….10
Stop Painting Over The Rust Peter Nicol ………………..11
Causes of Hearing Damage Ron Court …..…….….…...12
Key Risks You Must Consider Before Moving to the Cloud – Part 2 Karen Davey-Thorpe …....13
Price Versus Value Paul Gillmore ….................14
Editor’s BizTips ………….15
LTB Objectives …..........…16
Photograph courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald 1
Let’s Talk Business
Small Business & The Older Worker
The Federal government has confirmed that the pension age will rise to 70 by 2035. In what may be an opportunity for the increasing army of older job-seekers, the government will pay subsidies of up to $10,000 over two years to employers who hire mature workers. “Mature workers” in this instance, are deemed to be over 50 years of age. The program is expected to cost about $525 million over four years and could benefit up to 32,000 older workers a year. Employers will initially be paid $3,000 as an incentive to hire workers over 50 who have been unemployed for six months or more. The package will consist of a phased-in system, and employers will be then eligible to receive a further $3,000 for keeping these workers employed for 12 months. A further $2,000 will be available for those kept in jobs for 18 months and a final $2,000 if businesses employ a mature-age worker for two years or more. The program commences on July 1st next year and will cost $190 million. Once a mature worker has been continuously employed for six months, the business will start to receive the incentive payment of $250 a fortnight for the subsequent six months. Some businesses have indicated that they are keen to snap up the federal government's $10,000 grants to hire older workers, and numerous employers and recruitment agencies have praised the incentive as good for
encouraging bosses to hire mature workers.
Australians to work to 70 years of age,” Mr Behrens said.
However, official statistics show ageism in the workplace kicks in as early as 45, and ridding the workplace of ageism will take some time.
There are many more who also believe that this initiative simply won’t work.
An AAP analysis of Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows people who lose their jobs when aged between 45 and 54 can expect to be out of work for about a year. And the older you are, the harder it is to find work. Nick Behrens, general manager of advocacy for the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland, said the bonus is unlikely to change employer hiring decisions. A $10,000 payout to employers hiring older workers is unlikely to change hiring practices, making it difficult for Australians to work longer and leaving the economy facing a huge workforce and revenue shortfall in coming years, Mr Behrens warned. “Firstly, it’s four separate payments, four touchpoints between business and government and in business’s view that’s probably four too many,” Mr Behrens said. He said the Baby Boomer generation’s retirement will mean a massive workforce exodus and the loss of their income tax will leave governments desperately struggling to cover higher healthcare costs. “So we’re going to need hundreds of thousands of new workers over that time and so the $10,000 incentive payment, well it’s quite simply not enough of an influence to address these issues of the age dependency ratio and really enabling
Equal opportunity commissioner Kate Jenkins, who previously worked in the field of discrimination law, said age discrimination in employment started from about 45, and was ''pretty systemic and accepted''. This included workers being picked for redundancy because they were older, or workers as young as 50 being asked when they were going to retire. ''It surprises me. It's really quite overt age discrimination,'' she said. Ms Jenkins said the concern about the economic decision to increase the pension age was the fact age discrimination in employment was already a very big issue. There are many differing opinions on whether Australians want to work that long, are physically capable of working into their 70s, and whether there will be enough jobs for them. And what about small business owners … Do they really want to employ older workers? Is small business really set up to meet the needs of the older worker? Many small business owners feel that productivity will decline if they employ older workers (say 70 and beyond), mainly because it’s reasonable to assume that the older worker is simply slower than their younger counterparts. It also begs the question: How difficult it might be to sack an older worker? 2
Let’s Talk Business
Something To Say? LTB EDITORIAL Communicating Are We Really Responsive? In this exciting age we enjoy many technological advances. With the range of communication techniques rapidly increasing with computers, data bases, pagers, phones, iPads, etc., it would seem that we have every possible high-tech assistance to help us communicate extremely effectively. Yet recent studies show disturbing trends about people’s responsiveness to each other. Despite the fact that more sophisticated communication devices are available now more than ever before, many experts believe that fewer and fewer communications are actually getting through. The experts are saying that because we are barraged with so many signals from so many sources, we simply cannot absorb them all. To defend ourselves against information overload, we have become experts at tuning out unwanted signals. This has become such an automatic reaction for most of us that we are often not even conscious that we are doing it. Indeed, it seems certain that the more our world becomes addicted to high tech wizardry, the less responsive we will become. The one thing that remains constant in our ever-changing world is our freedom to choose how we will respond to others. In fact, those people who make the choice to be responsive to others will always be in great demand.
Letters and Article contributions from readers are most welcome Please send your letters to email@example.com
GOOD NEWS FOR LTB READERS! You Have the Skills, the Knowledge and the Experience, but do you have the Qualification? “Let’s Talk Business” (LTB) has joined forces with Brisbane Career College to offer a range of Nationally Recognised Qualifications (NRQ) for LTB readers.
Well Done! To the 30 budding entrepreneurs who took a large chunk out of their Saturday recently, to attend a workshop on “Starting Your Own Business” held at the Caboolture Business Enterprise Centre (CBEC).
A number of NRQs that are available are: Diploma
Diploma of Business
The fact that you were prepared to spend a large part of your weekend to attend, indicates, to me, that you are prepared to go “the extra mile” - an essential ingredient for success.
Diploma of Management
The BEC is considering delivering a series of these free workshops for the regions’ entrepreneurs, including Business Planning, Marketing and Planning Your Finances.
Certificate IV in TAE
President of the BEC, Adam Leishman, said that if today’s attendance numbers are any indication of not just the popularity of these workshops, but more importantly, the need for them, then he believes his Committee would be only too happy to run more of these type of Workshops. Well done, Adam, to you and your Committee for putting this together.
Advanced Diploma of Business Advanced
Diploma of VET
And the GOOD NEWS is that if you have the previous skills, knowledge or experience, you could receive your qualification through Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) Please check out Brisbane Career College’s website at www.brisbanecollege.edu.au, or contact the College direct at firstname.lastname@example.org
Let’s Talk Business
Dr Tim Baker Managing Director WINNERS AT WORK Pty Ltd
The ABC Approach to Poor Performance
Telephone. +61 7 3899 8881
Editor’s Note: Dr. Tim Baker is an international consultant, successful author, keynote speaker, master trainer, executive coach, university lecturer and skilful facilitator. 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. “"Dr Baker leads the world in offering an innovative new approach to appraising employee performance. His research and energy in the specialised field of performance management is evidenced by his international profile as a renowned speaker, management consultant and facilitator" . Stephen Hartley, Australia’s leading expert on project management and author of " Project Management: Principles, Processes and Practices.
assume that the trigger for a particular behaviour is wholly internal to the employee. Make an effort also to analyse the consequences that might subtly be reinforcing the unhelpful behaviour. For example, if you are a manager and your colleague’s last three reports contained lots of mistakes (B), ask them what the reasons were. They may say that they were rushed and ─ after further probing from you ─ point out that they were delayed internally by someone who did not get them the information they required (A). Because the information was late, the employee you are having the conversation with points out, they had no time to thoroughly proofread the reports (C).
How do you approach poor performance without starting World War III?
The discussion then moves to how to ensure that they receive timely information in future.
The ABC analysis is a good way to consider all the factors associated with a particular performance issue. All behaviours (B) have antecedents (A) ─ that is, triggers ─ and consequences (C).
Ask the employee to commit to thoroughly proofreading the final draft before submission if they receive timely information in future.
When working out how to adjust unhelpful behaviours, analyse what the factors may be and pay attention to subtle external antecedents ─ do not
In this case, not only have you got the employee’s commitment that they will take care to proofread their reports, but you have also unearthed some background to assist them to modify their behaviour.
You can read more about this and other useful strategies in The End of the Performance Review: A New Approach to Appraising Employee Performance. Dr Tim Baker is the author of a new book - Attracting and Retaining Talent: Becoming and Employer of Choice which will shortly be published through Palgrave Macmillan (www.winnersatwork.com.au). 4
Let’s Talk Business
Seen at a Senior’s school in Caringbah (Sydney): School’s starting! Teachers; You can’t hit the students, but you can still hit the bottle … The sign was taken down after only 2 days On a lawn maintenance van: Major Tom’s Ground Control On a shop’s doorway: Push to open. If that doesn’t work then Pull. If that doesn’t work then try the proper entrance around the corner. On a Solar Screens and Window Repair van: Glen’s Pane in the Glass
A quote from an interview with the head of a growing company. Journalist asks: “So how many employees are working in your company?” Boss: “Approximately half of them”
Unwanted Staffer? Relocation “Why did you leave your last job?” “The company relocated and didn't tell me where”
Great Boss Smith goes to see his supervisor in the front office. "Boss," he says, "we're doing some heavy housecleaning at home tomorrow, and my wife needs me to help with the attic and the garage, moving and hauling stuff." "We're short-handed, Smith," the boss replies. "I can't give you the day off." "Great. Thanks, boss," says Smith, "I knew I could count on you!" Cheapest Parking in Town Before going to Europe on business, a man drives his Rolls-Royce to a downtown New York City bank and asks for an immediate loan of $5,000. The loan officer, taken aback, requests collateral. "Well then, here are the keys to my RollsRoyce," the man says. The loan officer promptly has the car driven into the bank's underground parking for safe keeping and gives the man the $5,000. Two weeks later, the man walks through the bank's doors and asks to
settle up his loan and get his car back. "That will be $5,000 in principal, and $15.40 in interest," the loan officer says. The man writes out a check and starts to walk away. "Wait, sir," the loan officer says. "You are a millionaire. Why in the world would you need to borrow $5,000?" The man smiles, "Where else could I find a safer place to park my Rolls-Royce in Manhattan for two weeks and pay only $15.40?" QUOTES & QUIPS
Failure is not an option—it comes bundled with the software. The successful business owner is the one who finds out what is the matter with their business before their competitors do. Roy L. Smith
Eagles soar, but weasels don’t get sucked into jet engines. The light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off due to budget cuts. A meeting is an event at which the minutes are kept and the hours are lost. Nothing is illegal if Government decide to do it. Andrew Young There’s an enormous number of managers who have retired on the job. Peter Drucker
Let’s Talk Business Dennis Chiron Marketing Means Business 0451 184 599 www.marketingmeansbusiness.com
Is There a Need For Training In Your Business?
The future of any company is dependent on the skills, knowledge and motivation of it people. Training of staff is necessary to provide employees with knowledge and ability to carry out their work correctly and satisfactorily. This will enable the company to increase output and help employees to feel more confident in their work and their productivity. Employees will be more motivated and enthusiastic about their work which may open new and long term opportunities for them. To achieve successful staff training and development, there are two main area to concentrate on. They are: On-the-job training, and Off-the-job training On-the-job training involves the new employee learning about the work by actually performing it at the workplace. An experienced co-worker, supervisor or manager should train the employee in the correct procedure for carrying out the work. In order to carry out on-thejob training successfully, there are a number of basic steps. Firstly, you should explain to your staff who are undertaking the training, your firm’s training procedures and your reasoning for the training. It may be to maintain quality, increase productivity, improve employee’s skills or to maintain the reputation of the company for having skilled, highly trained staff. The next step is to familiarise the employee with the overall objectives of your firm, and explain the quality and quantity of work outcomes that are
achieved. They should then be shown how they are to achieve the expected level of work, and once this has been made clear, the trainer should go through the steps with them again. As a result, they will feel more comfortable and it will encourage more confidence and capability as they mature in their position. Once the employee commences you should, once again, explain the correct procedure in carrying out the job. When mistakes occur correct them immediately, and if necessary, carry out the more difficult steps again. Whenever they perform a task well, compliment them.
Off-the-job training involves training outside of the working premises and may include seminars, lectures and case studies. These can be very useful when training staff for it gives them outside information which the company may overlook. It will widen the scope for the staff who are undertaking the training, and will contribute to developing a more competent employee. Typical off-the-job training may include:
Finally, should ensure that they know who to report to if problems occur. This person should be someone who is always present and easy to find. Off-the-job training: as the name suggests, off-the-job training is provided away from the immediate workplace.
This might be at a specialist training centre or at a college or at a company’s own premises. This type of training can be particularly useful for developing transferable skills that can be used in many different parts of the business. It may be used, for example, to train employees in the use of new equipment and new methods or to bring them up to date with changes in the law.
Day release (employee takes time off work to attend a local college or training centre) Distance learning / evening classes Block release courses - which may involve several weeks at a local college “Sandwich” courses - where the employee spends a longer period of time at college (e.g. six months) before returning to work Sponsored courses in higher education Self-study, computer-based training
A continuing training program is vital for any business - big and small - intent on improving employee’s skills, increasing quality and productivity, improving morale and maintaining standards and reputation. 6
Let’s Talk Business
Geoff Butler FAIM AP, MAITD MACE Principal/Business Improvement & Implementation Specialist Business Optimizers Mobile: 0414 943072
Improve Your Reputation with Better Stories Not Adjectives
Fax: 3036 6131 Email: email@example.com Skype: business.optimizers1
Psychologists have discovered that your brain, just like your stomach, can get full. This phenomenon is called semantic satiation where people got so tired of hearing a repeated word or phrase, that their brain began processing it as gibberish. The rise of jargon isn’t a new phenomenon of course, and it has long been greeted with everything from annoyance to mild amusement. Beyond the snickering about ‘synergies’ and ‘value added solutions’ lies a real problem. Too many business and their owners are trying to tell someone else’s story. They are relying on words that don’t accurately or authentically characterise what they do and why they are different, or how they provide value to customers, employees, and society. Take for example, the buzzword: “innovation.”
A 2012 Wall Street Journal report found that U.S. companies used some form of the word ‘innovation’ over 33,000 times in SEC-filed reports - a 64% increase compared to 2007. In 2013, the Journal discovered that the number of Standard & Poor's 500 companies mentioning innovation on their quarterly conference calls had doubled to 197, from just 99 five years prior.
Do we think there are suddenly twice as many innovative companies? A more likely explanation is that the same companies that undoubtedly understand the perils of ‘me too’ marketing of their products are, embracing ‘me too’ marketing of their company.
In searching for these stories, don’t think about what you want to say. Find out what your respective audiences want or need to hear. Do the research to see how you and your industry are really perceived; to see if what you say matches what people really think about you.
The more companies that claim to be innovative, the less it really means.
Don’t tell an audience how innovative you are. Show them with a great story.
When asking executives to identify the biggest barriers to achieving their company’s innovation targets, the top reply was ‘the absence of a welldefined innovation strategy. It’s tough to meet a goal when you can’t define what it is.
These insights will help you develop and deliver a consistent narrative that reinforces good perceptions and provides an authentic picture of what you do.
The word ‘innovation’ isn’t the real problem. Nor is the desire to be seen as innovative. The problem is thinking that the secret to better communications and a better reputation is better adjectives. Instead of finding better adjectives, companies need to find a better story. Don’t tell an audience how innovative you are. Show them with a great story. Good company stories do more than just engage or entertain. They highlight what really makes you different, and how you actually put your company values into practice. They demonstrate how a complicated technology or business can deliver simple, easy to understand value to the people who buy from you, invest in you, work with you, or depend on you to solve problems.
Tell the right stories with an original voice and your audience just may conclude on their own that you are innovative, or strategic, or whatever else you want to, without you ever having to actually say it. The importance of good storytelling will continue to grow as companies deal with audiences that have shorter attention spans and diminishing confidence in anything government and business have to say. Many companies are still lagging behind, piling into an overcrowded communications marketplace with more jargon, when they should be separating themselves with better stories. Almost every company has interesting stories to tell that will resonate and be relevant to the audiences they care about. Now, they just need to tell them. 7
Let’s Talk Business Jo-Anne Chaplin Tax & Superannuation Professionals Pty Ltd PH 07 3410 8116 / Mobile 0457 960 566 Email : firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.taxandsuperprofessionals.com.au
Tax Time 2014
I am a qualified Accountant and will celebrate my 20 th anniversary as a Registered Tax Agent this year. During my time in Public Practice I have assisted clients to achieve business growth and prosperity. My earlier career included positions in banking, manufacturing, construction and retail. My particular interest is in promoting a culture of using local industries and business in order to build a strong community.
Tax time 2014 It’s nearly time to lodge our annual income tax returns again, so I thought I would remind clients of the types of claims that may be available to them. As always, the ATO have a target list of industries they are going to be reviewing, and this year their focus will be on the building and construction labourers, construction supervisors, project managers and sales & marketing managers.
claims made in your income tax return. There are different forms of substantiation depending on the claim being made. For example, motor vehicle claims are supported by either a log book plus receipts for running and ownership costs, or by a “detailed & reasonable estimate” of the business use of the car. Claims for business and contractors are much the same as above, but will also include:
Claims which you may be able to make include:
Rental of business or storage premises
Advertising, office expenses
Tools, equipment, stationery, mobile phone, diaries, uniforms & protective clothing
Motor vehicle, travel for business
Courses, professional development, reference & instruction manuals
Professional memberships, licensing fees, union fees
Tax advice and preparation fees
Other potential claims are:
Home office expenses
Travel between unrelated places of work or alternate places of work
Sickness & Accident insurance
Substantiaton is required for all
If you have a rental property claims will include:
Agent fees, repairs, replacements,
Ownership expenses – rates, body corporate, insurance
Interest and fees on loan to acquire the property
Travel to inspect or maintain the property
Depreciation on fittings and Building Allowance write-off
Lodgement of your Returns If you lodge through a Tax Agent, your return will generally have an extension of time to be lodged. However, if you were late lodging your previous year’s return, or you lodge your return personally, then your return will be due on 31st October,2014. Businesses usually wait until the last minute to lodge their returns, believing that it will extend the time they have to pay any liability due. This is not correct, and I would urge businesses to lodge as early as possible. Any liability you have to pay will still be due for payment in the latter quarter of the 2014/15 financial year. The benefit of lodging early though, will be the adjustment to the payg instalment being paid throughout the year will more closely represent your actual liability instead of being either too much or too little. Another side benefit of lodging early is the chance to review the past year’s trading more promptly to identify any areas that need attention. Managing your business will promote increases in profits, risk management and cash flow. 8
Let’s Talk Business
Dan Buzer Profit Mechanics 0414 567 188 www.profitmechanics.net/ email@example.com
What Nearly Every Business, Including Your Competitors, Have Absolutely NO CLUE About! Now, I know that sounds like a rash statement, so let me prove it to you.
couple glasses of wine). The next project is to add the final piece of the puzzle. By the way, you haven’t spent a cent!
Go to www.google.com, type in a suburb name where you know there are lots of businesses (like an industrial estate), zoom into any area where you can see the buildings of businesses. What do you see? How many tags come up, showing the names of the businesses? I bet that there’s only about 1 in 10 businesses showing up as being recognised by Google maps! Oh, but wait … there’s MORE! Of the businesses that a bubble shows up on, stating the name of the business, click on the icon inside that bubble called ‘more’. This is that businesses opportunity to tell you how good they are, how they are unique and to show you photos of their wonderful products, amazing people and even happy smiley photos of customers! But they’re NOT there, are they?! Why? Because they don’t know … but now YOU do! But, there’s EVEN MORE!!! Google is scouring the internet looking for things to index, particularly businesses, as they are the ones that spend money with Google. To get noticed by Google the best thing you can do is tell them as much as you can about yourself. Tick as many boxes as you can, describe yourself in the appropriate sections
Your YouTube Channel is essential. This is a little bit trickier and you may want to borrow a guru for a few hours to set up your page. and fill every photo slot you can (there are 10). However, here’s a little secret. Google has trained the world to have a maximum of a 9 second attention span. Yep, that’s their magic number. If a page takes 9 seconds to load up, the person looking for that page has moved on to a faster loading page. Due to this phenomenon Google has identified that people prefer short, snappy and popular videos! So they have added to the Google+ profile page an area where you can upload 5 YouTube videos. “Why YouTube videos, Dan?” Glad you asked! Google took this ‘grab people’s attention’ thing seriously. Very seriously! In fact, they took it so seriously they acquired YouTube!! Now do I have YOUR attention? So imagine how much you would stand out to Google if you were one of the very, very, very few businesses that completely filled out their profile, uploaded 10 photos AND uploaded 5 YouTube videos? Now you have done the basics. To do those things will take about a day (and a
But once it’s set up, you can easily upload videos and share them with your Google+ profile, Facebook page, website, blog and lots of other places. “But Dan, I’m not very experienced at putting videos together”. Here’s a little trick for you. Go to www.animoto.com. It’s about $30/month (cheaper if you pay for a year up front) and is incredibly easy to learn. Even better than that, it’s loaded with music, images and video clips that are copyright free! By the way, your phone camera is good enough to take video with. You can add captions and your own video clips and still shots, so you don’t have to worry about sound. Remember, the videos just need to a. Exist so you can keep Google happy. b. Be interesting enough for people to take a look at (hint, video people, send it to them and they will share it because it’s all about them!). There’s one more thing to do to turbo charge your efforts. If you call me on 0414 567 188 I’ll tell you! If you don’t call … well, let’s hope your competitors don’t! 9
Let’s Talk Business
Karen Ahl Bac. Bus (Mark, Man), TAE40110, Cert IV IT Caboolture, Queensland Ph 0415 142 178
To Blog Or Not To Blog! 3. Blog on a regular basis – once a
What is a BLOG?
week or fortnight is manageable for most small business.
noun: blog; plural noun: blogs
a personal website or web page on which an individual records opinions, links to other sites, etc. on a regular basis. …. Source: www.google.com
Originally, Blog sites started as a kind-of online website diary. Predominately used by individuals, they would write about their personal lives, hobbies, clubs, kids, pets and experiences to share online with family and friends. Like a long-winded version of Facebook. Applying BUSINESS
4. Don’t write just one Blog article and then get too busy. Schedule time.
5. Keep the search engines in mind and incorporate keywords and phrases that you want to rank for into your article wording. A kept-up-to-date Blog also encourages visitors back to your website. E.g. a catering website offer free recipes or car audio retailer providing product reviews on new accessories. Blogging also gives you a great way to connect to existing customers.
These days, in our attempt to appease the Search Engines, Blogging has become the THING to do. Blogging also allows you to communicate short (or long) articles about a range of topics associated to your industry. Blogs can also be a combination of and image/s and words.
Blog articles also give the search engines something to feast on (the search engines like current content). Keeping your article at approximately 300 words with some images is ideal. Keeping the content related to one topic is also important. This can help increase the chances of you appearing in the search engines.
The benefits of blogging
Check with your website provider… most recently created websites are capable of having a Blog page added in without too much expense. Once established, if you have access to the backend of your website to make edits, you should be able to add your own Blog articles at no cost.
There are many benefits in favour of Blogging, this is why so many people do it and almost every website designer, developer and search engine specialist will suggest it. You can use a BLOG to establish yourself as ‘the expert’ in your industry. If you are the ‘Garden Guru’, ‘Marketing Mogul’ or ‘Catering Queen’ in your area, the article/s online can extend your potential reach.
1. Provide information that helps your readers. it entertaining.
7. Provide images, diagrams, video content – most people crave visual stimuli.
8. Do not copy – Be aware of copyright laws. Be original and reference other people’s work when applicable. Other things you can Blog about: Organisations/charities that your
New staff, new services, new
research results relevant to your industry.
YouTube videos or diagrams. Industry
instructions. Step by step instructions Product reviews
Here are some tips:
6. Pick one topic and stick to it.
For further information, please feel free to email Karen ~ The Webgirl. 10
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Peter Nicol Wisdom Marketing & Management Services 0417627097 www.wisdommarketing.com.au firstname.lastname@example.org
Stop Painting Over The Rust ! “If you always do what you have always done, you will get what you have always got.” …. I reckon whoever said this was right.
sign up on their noticeboard and say that employees of that facility were entitled to a discount of some sorts?
Of recent months I have been seeing a lot of retailers and businesses who seem to be stuck on go.
I know that works as I have done it dozens of times. No costs involved only your time to go see them and ask permission to put your card or message on the noticeboard.
The economy is no doubt slowing and the consumer confidence index is the lowest since 2009. However, no point behaving like possums caught in the lights of the oncoming car and getting flattened. Every business has an obligation to do something that can enhance sales as they chart their way through these times. You cannot discover new oceans until you lose sight of the shore. The need to discover new markets and customers is the fuel that any business needs. So doing what you have always done just might need a rethink. In most cases I see it does. So stop painting over the rust. I recommend a real good look at sales development tactics. I did a small survey (verbal) with a few contacts and friends in business. All were what I call shop or deskbound businesses. They had a two dimensional approach to their business. People either walked in or walked past. Yet, the array of their products was worthy of many more clients than they currently had. I asked if they ever set time aside to
These are some of the best ways to get customers into your store. see some of the businesses in their area. In all cases the answer was no. Yet, in the previous days I found myself in many of these outside places that they could do business with.
I once did a promotion for a mortgage broker; we offered a free meat tray for any employee of a large factory who came to him looking for a loan.
I found I had to visit a number of councils. Councils buy a lot of stuff and yes I know they call tenders and all the other things that can make it all too hard. Yet, I was amazed at how many of them had accounts with nearby business houses.
He put the sign up in the factory canteen and did a deal with a local butcher and he got business. He had the costs of doing the call to the factory and the cost of $50 meat tray.
Their staff could go up and order what they needed when the time arose. Yet no one ever called on them. Not huge volumes but good bread and butter stuff. What would happen if you decided to put aside a day a week and go out and do some canvassing? Leave a few business cards out there. Have a trade night and have a supplier pay for a few chops and a soft drinks. This is sales development at its very basic and very best. Why not put a
I did the same for a large catering house who did weddings. Lot of people read notice boards to see what their shifts are going to be. Most women are going to be brides or mothers of brides. They love to look at options for receptions. The workplace noticeboard is a powerful medium as it gets lookers. Yup it worked. Try getting out of the shop and do some cold calling. It works. 11
Let’s Talk Business
Ron Court, AMC, Dip (Funerals) ,Cert IV OH&S, Cert IV Training & Assessment TAE, MQJA, JP (Qual)
Causes of Hearing Damage
OH&S Advisor 0419 679 619 email@example.com
Agents of hearing damage Hearing damage may result from several agents - both occupational and non-occupational: Noise occupational (called occupational noise-induced hearing loss ONIHL). Noise - non-occupational (called sociocusis*). Ageing - (called presbyacusis*). Diseases and infections, ototoxic* medications, trauma (blows) to the head (collectively called nosoacusis*). Ototoxic substances in the workplace (eg organic solvents, lead). Describing the hearing loss If the agent affects the function of the middle ear, eardrum or blocks the ear canal, the hearing loss is called conductive. If the agent damages the cochlea structures, nerve fibres, auditory nerve or auditory centres of the brain, the hearing loss is called sensorineural. Noise can affect hearing in different ways Noise can affect hearing in four main ways: 1. Acoustic trauma 2. Temporary threshold shift (TTS) 3. Permanent threshold shift (PTS) 4. Tinnitus Acoustic trauma Acoustic trauma, from the effect of a single exposure or relatively few exposures to a very intense level of sound, may cause: Damage to the ear drum; Damage to the ossicles; and Mechanical damage to the hair cells, supporting cells and tissues of
the organ of Corti. Temporary threshold shift (TTS) A temporary threshold shift (TTS), which recovers between exposures, is commonly experienced. You may have noticed sound seeming muffled after exposure to loud noise or music. If you have to turn the car radio up after a day's noisy work, then find it too loud the next morning, you may be experiencing TTS. This may last, depending on the nature of the exposure and the individual, for minutes, hours, or days, after the sound has stopped. In general, for continuous noise, as the exposure time increases so does the TTS, until after 4 to 12 hours a plateau (or asymptotic level) is reached. For impact noises the asymptotic level of TTS appears after only 1 to 2 hours. The recovery after exposure ceases is at first rapid, but then slows down, with complete recovery taking at least as long as the original exposure time. Permanent threshold shift A permanent threshold shift (PTS) occurs gradually. Normally, it is the hair cells in the inner ear, which detect the 4-6 kHz frequencies, which deteriorate first. As most of the speech frequencies are below this range, the loss may initially go unnoticed. Tinnitus Research into the causes of tinnitus is ongoing and more detail can be found in the links in the Further Reading section. The current theory is that damage to the hair cells of the inner ear (from
noise or other agents) causes the generation of weak, abnormal nerve impulses, which are mistakenly perceived by the brain as real external sounds. In the 10% or so of people who are troubled by persistent tinnitus, it is thought that these weak signals are amplified to a disturbing level in the neural pathways that connect the cochlea to the different parts of the brain. This process seems to be made worse by stress or emotional events, which may explain why tinnitus is twice as common in hearing impaired people - straining to hear focuses the subconscious brain to pick up anything coming from the inner ear. When working in a noisy environment remember the Hierarchy of Hazard Control: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
ELIMINATION SUBSTITUTION ISOLATION ENGINEERING CONTROL ADMINISTRATION CONTROL 6. PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT 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.
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Karen Davey-Thorpe AAIDC CC Smart n Savvy Business Solutions 1800 899 198 firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Risks You Must Consider Before Moving to the Cloud – Part 2 The marketing of cloud has been very effective in promoting the positive aspects of what cloud computing can deliver for business (quicker, cheaper, better), however there are many risks and business impacts that must be understood before deciding whether or not cloud computing is the right choice for you. Previously I’ve discussed risks concerning network dependency (speed and reliability), data sovereignty and security, and compliance. Today’s article will explore four more risks that you should consider so you can determine what mitigation actions you may need to take to support your cloud migration. Risk 4: Data and Intellectual Property Ownership Did you know that by agreeing to the terms and conditions of some cloud services (like those providing free email, document/image sharing and storage) that you may be signing over the ownership of your content and IP to that cloud service provider? Not only will they own it, they can use it for their own commercial purposes. This may not be important when it comes to the personal emails and documents/images you send to your friends and family, but what about your business emails and documents? What impact would the
transfer of data and IP ownership to a third party have on your business? How much confidential or commercially sensitive information would you share using this service and what would it mean to lose control over it? Before you agree to any cloud service provider’s terms and conditions, make sure you understand who will own the data and IP (Intellectual Property). Risk 5: Cloud Provider Lock-In There is currently little in the way of tools, procedures or standards that could guarantee portability of data and processes across cloud providers. Be sure to pick your cloud provider carefully and do your research as once you have chosen a cloud provider it may be difficult to move elsewhere if you are unhappy with the performance or service. Cloud providers could make it difficult to extract your data from their cloud and, in some cases, a third -party tool is needed to migrate that data back on premise. Risk 6: Long-term viability. It would be nice to believe that your cloud service provider will never go broke or get acquired by a larger company. However, given there is a lot of activity in the industry right now, there is a high possibility that this is exactly what may happen.
You need to satisfy yourself that your data will remain available even after such an event. You may do this by asking potential providers how you would get your data back and if it would be in a format that you could import into a replacement application. Risk 7: Disaster Recovery Hosting your data with a cloud provider makes the cloud provider’s disaster recovery capabilities vitally important to your businesses’ disaster recovery plans. It is important that you know your cloud provider’s disaster recovery capabilities, including their ability to do a complete restoration, and how long it will take. It is also important to know if their disaster recovery plans are tested and how often. As with the implementation of any key business activity, it is important to plan properly and consider how all areas of your business that may be affected. The decision to proceed with a cloud computing solution should only be undertaken once a risk assessment has been completed and you are satisfied the risks and mitigation actions are acceptable. If you’d like to learn more about whether cloud should be part of your business, please contact me.
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Paul GILLMORE DFS Founder and Director Southern Cross Financial Services 07 5429 5561 0402 685 032 email@example.com
Price versus Value At a recent Bribie Better Business meeting, local businesses came together to discuss their issues and concerns. The purpose was to ‘brainstorm’ and generate ideas and potential directions for future discussions and presentations. Key issues such as Penalty Rates, Industrial Relations – hiring and firing; Over-Regulation; Taxation; Government Grants and of course, Marketing and Promotion were flagged for discussion. Another issue which often interests us but sometimes confounds, is the issue of Price versus Value. We often look at costs and associated ways to improve but maybe we over emphasise these efforts from time to time. If we know that “Price” is what we charge but “Value” is what we deliver then we can alter our perspective and perhaps focus more on delivering value. It seems that we are thoroughly conditioned to look at price. I would like to challenge this by asking you if you have ever purchased anything from a ‘Discount Shop’? How well did the item perform? How long did it last? Did the item annoy you in the way it worked? Did it break within the first few times of using it? Now don’t get me wrong. I am not denigrating discount shops because they do have their place in the market and I do shop there myself. I draw your intention to the motivating factor of Price as the primary reason for shopping there – certainly there are also items that
equate very well on price and value, so please shop there. When it comes to our businesses though, sometimes it would be nice to sell on value rather than price alone. But how do we do this when the bloke down the road is in direct competition? How is Your Product Better? Do you use better ingredients? Is your process better? Are you better at looking after your clients/customers? Shouldn’t you be paid for the better value that you bring to the market place? YES ! I hear you say – but how? I’m glad you asked. You could begin by asking your existing clients what they like about your business and exactly why they buy from you rather than the bloke down the road – Take notes. Next, you could brainstorm ALL the really good things about your product, your process, your service. Make an EXHAUSTIVE List under each category. You can then simply chat to your clients as you do business with them to find out if they knew any of these things and how important they are to them, is there anything they would like that you are not doing now – take notes on these too. Next, do you absolutely, completely, wholeheartedly, unshakeably BELIEVE in your product AND YOURSELF? Then take a step back and think about these things . . .
Marriage Let’s marry the things that clients want and like, with the really good things about our business. So TELL them the BENEFITS before they hand over any money. Our quest is to create a “marriage made in heaven” of your business with their wants, needs and desires. Cheap at Twice the Price Our goal is to stack up SO MANY BENEFITS as to make our product look cheap. Once we have established superior value to the bloke down the road we have strong and valid reasons as to why our price is higher and here’s the thing, people will pay for quality. Just ask yourself why you don’t always buy the cheapest item – your clients are the same. Think of perfume, jewellery, coffee, chocolate and it’s easy to see that people are happy to pay for better quality. No E.S.P. though But your clients don’t have E.S.P. and they can’t read your mind so you will have to tell them why your ingredients, process or end product is better BEFORE they pay – then you can remind them from time to time as their repeat business comes. Let’s sell on value NOT price. 14
Letâ€™s Talk Business Dennis Chiron Marketing Means Business 0451 184 599 www.marketingmeansbusiness.com
firstname.lastname@example.org Skype: dennis.chiron2
6 Steps To Get More Business From Your Existing Clients 1 Make a list of your top 25 clients you may be able to do more business with. 2 Arrange a meeting with each of the above 25 clients to re-visit their current situation and see if there are additional ways you can assist them. 3 In the actual meeting ask probing questions to uncover additional needs or problems that you can solve. 4 Present them with a solution. 5 Ask for referrals to other people you can help. 6 Check off each client as you complete the process. This is such a simple thing to do and it works! Not only will you generate additional revenues, but your customers will be more satisfied, as you are solving problems for them and they are getting more of what they want from you! ...TRY IT! The Power of Advertising Advertising is one of the more popular facets of a comprehensive marketing campaign. It provides a direct line of communication to your customers regarding your product or service and it is usually a necessary part of establishing and/or growing a business. However, like all other aspects of your business, for advertising to be successful, it must be carefully planned.
Knowing when to advertise will help you make the most of your marketing dollar. It will also play a part in helping you choose what to advertise, and what medium works the best for you. Check Out Potential Business Partners Or Suppliers Need to check out potential business partners or suppliers? Meeting them at their offices can give you the most well-rounded picture of their capabilities and a sense of their personalities. Always meet with them more than once to double-check your first impression. When at their offices, watch how they treat others. How do they deal with others when they are angry or feeling insecure? Here's a simple reliability test: Ask them to call you back at a certain time and see if they do. How Much Should You Spend On Advertising? Advertising is a necessary part of any business. However, to be effective it takes more than just putting ads in every state newspaper and hoping for the best. Often businesses spend too much money at the wrong time, wasting their valuable resources. By analysing your sales history and your cost of advertising, you can then discover not only how much you should be spending on advertising but when.
Keeping Your Customers Customers are the reason why you are still in business, but too often, they are neglected. However, there are simple systems you can put in place which will ensure your customers are happy with your service. Here are some simple hints and tips which could make all the difference to your customers - and your sales! Everybody in the company should be concerned about customers. Without customers there would be no jobs and no money. Maintain Customer Contact It has been estimated that you should contact each customer at least eight times a year to retain them as active customers. You must consider every customer a whole new Business Opportunity. Follow up is one of the greatest tools you can use to assure repeat patronage. Immediate follow-up will set the stage for a long-lasting relationship between your customer and your company. A simple "thank you" at the end of a transaction will impress your customer and give you an opportunity to measure your customer's level of satisfaction. That's where the follow up begins, but if you want this business opportunity to be a business success, you won't let that be where your follow up ends. ďƒž 15
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