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Building a Business

Friend & Grant Chartered Accountants have been helping small and medium sized businesses in the Medway towns and North Kent for over 20 years

6th April 2022

Growing your business without the financials!

In order to make big profits you need to know what are the key numbers in your business. Well it’s not the cashflow, budget, profit and loss or bank balance……we are talking about non-financial figures that help the business to grow…...CONVERSION RATES!

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21st March 2022

Get your oar out! A key business lesson to help grow your business

Having run an accountancy practice for almost 30 years I have had the good fortune to meet literally thousands of business owners. Many have created great companies but many others have unfortunately failed. Reasons given for failure are numerous. Many are genuine such as Covid or an unforeseen bad debt resulting in severe cashflow problems. Most however are due to a basic misunderstanding of what is required to create a successful business.

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28th February 2022

Don't ignore health and safety compliance- £.2.5m of fines in December 2021 alone!

The pandemic has had a dramatic effect on all our lives over the last two years. Businesses have had to adapt quickly to a changing environment. One area that may have been overlooked is the need to review your health and safety compliance.

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10th January 2022
three women sitting at table

Building a great remuneration package for your team

There was a time when what salary you paid a team member was the only reward a business owner or company director had to think about when remunerating their team. However those days have long gone and most small business owners now have to view the whole package in order to attract and keep their best team members.

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7th January 2022
marketing strategy

How to avoid the most common marketing trap!

As a small business owner for almost 30 years I have first hand experience of falling into what is probably the biggest trap for growing a business- taking on anything and everything! It was very much a scatter gun approach with the hope of catching something. Anything in fact! As long as they paid!!!

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10th December 2021
green leaf

Frustrated with the lack of business growth?

Over 80% of business owners run businesses which provides them with a level of earnings which in honesty they could get or exceed if they were employed. Of the remainder the majority are earning good profits but still working long hours and invariably feel trapped in their businesses. Only a few business owners have created what I would call the dream business.

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29th July 2021
stone statue

Has the pandemic hit your business? Make sure you have the right perspective!

The trials and tribulations of the last year or so have been never ending for many business owners. The stop start due to COVID restrictions, increased cost of COVID compliance, homeworking, restricted working, continual rule changes, loss of staff due to illness and self-isolation, the re-evaluation of people’s lives, the impact on the bottom line...

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7th June 2021
Confetti on floor

What are the common traits of a successful business owner?

Having been in business myself now for almost 30 years I have seen the common traits of those business people who are successful and those who aren’t. It isn’t about having an extraordinary new idea which no one has thought about or tapping into new markets, although this is great if you can. It is more about doing the right things and doing them well.

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26th May 2021
Laptop on table

How much should small companies spend on their accounting function?

This is a really good question, and the simple answer is that it depends, but in many cases it is not nearly enough!!!! In general it depends on what the business owner wants and how big and complex the business is.

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20th May 2021
TMS CNC machinery

What is the new super-deduction for investment in equipment?

The new super deduction will run for two years from 1 April 2021 and is a radical new “super-deduction” of 130% for investment in new plant.

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20th April 2021
Great Wall of China

Wealth creation - The importance of a strong defence! (Part 2)

This is the second in a two part series of blogs on wealth creation. In the first blog I looked at how wealth is perceived in society and how you can measure your own wealth. In this blog I will share with you my top ten tips on how to create and maintain your own wealth.

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13th April 2021
woman in black and white clothes

Wealth creation - The importance of a strong defence! (Part 1)

This is the first of a two part series of blogs on the topic of wealth creation. In this first blog I will be looking at how wealth is perceived in society and how you can measure your own wealth.

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19th February 2021

How videos can drive sales growth

2021 started with another lockdown for UK businesses, which means that most consumers will continue shopping and searching for services online. If your target audience is the public you will know how important it is to promote your business online. But how do you know if your website and social media channels are optimised to appeal to and convert your target audience, your customers?

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14th January 2021

Five top tips to adopt in 2021 to improve your leadership skills

In today’s fast pace business world the need for growth is essential. However doing it on your own is incredibly difficult. Having a strong team around you is key but this can only be created and sustained through strong leadership.

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12th January 2021
People walking down hill

Struggling with leadership?

Good leadership principles are there for everyone to take and have been for a long time but even so few leaders fail to implement them. We examine what common errors business owners make and how they can improve their leadership techniques.

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30th November 2020
Man and woman sitting at table with laptop

Why are shareholder agreements so important?

Going into business is an exciting experience; doing so with a business partner even more so, but what happens when things go wrong? Would you have any protection in place to secure your future and that of the business?

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11th November 2020
green leaves

Looking to set up in business? Want to increase the odds of success?

If building a business was so simple then why do almost half of businesses which set up fail within the first 5 years? Construction is even worse with 2 out of every 3 startups failing in the first 5 years! It isn’t the lack of cash but this is often the nail in the coffin. It all started on day 1 with the failure of the business owner to understand what is really involved in becoming a successful business owner.

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30th September 2020
Petra, Jordan at sunset. Parkinson’s Law and the Impact on the Creation of Wealth

Parkinson’s Law and the Impact on the Creation of Wealth

Have you ever felt frustrated because despite earning more money your savings never seem to increase? If so then you are not alone as the vast majority of people in the UK experience this same phenomenon. In fact it was first articulated in 1955 by Cyril Northcote Parkinson in an essay in the Economist to describe time.

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24th August 2020
Star Wars robot R2D2

Have you felt the force of the digital age in your finance department?

Automation can prove beneficial for businesses, but what’s involved and where do you start?

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21st August 2020
Man has trodden on chewing gum on the road

Looking to give shares away in your company? Beware the pitfalls.

Looking to give shares away in your company to secure an investor, business partner or lock in an employee? Beware the pitfalls. In this blog we look at why company owners are prepared to sell or giveaway shares in their companies. We look at the problems, the tax issues, some of the solutions and recommendations we would make to ensure that if you do sale or give away part of your company that you secure your financial position.

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28th July 2020
multicoloured umbrellas flying in air

Is your family protected?

Being your own boss is risky at the best of times. If anything unexpected happened would your family be protected?

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23rd July 2020
tree at night by water with reflection

What is factoring?

Need finance to cope with your business growth? Have you considered factoring? If not then please read our article which looks at what is factoring and 8 key points to consider when choosing a factor.

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7th July 2020
2 green trees at sunset or sunrise

How to grow your business using moments of truth

There are many ways to grow your business. Moments of truth is a simple strategy which when adopted can transform any business. It involves breaking down processes into bite size bits or interactions and ensuring that each interaction becomes a positive experience.

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7th July 2020
lady smiling holding a light bulb and pointing toward her head

How creating or joining a Mastermind Group can help grow your business.

The mastermind principle is a well established business strategy that has been around for many years. Napoleon Hill discussed the mastermind principle in his book “The Law of Success” written way back in 1925. The mastermind principle was the second of 16 principles which Napoleon Hill believes must be followed in order to become successful.

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8th June 2020
bank notes and coins

Cashflow problems? How do I build a better credit control system?

Cash is king! In bad times there isn’t the luxury of being slack with extending credit to customers. For many businesses poor cash collection is the difference between life and death. Here are 15 easy steps to building a better credit control system and improving cashflow management.

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28th May 2020
silhouette of man raising hands on top of a rock at dusk

Our 10 point plan to survive and thrive in the current environment

Everything has changed. For many businesses the coming months will be a real challenge. With the removal of lockdown and a deep recession many businesses will not survive. If you have been adversely impacted by Covid 19 here is our 10 point plan to not only survive but more importantly thrive.

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20th May 2020
working from home environment

Did you know we offer virtual training for your Cloud Accountancy System?

We understand that the majority of businesses are operating differently. Our virtual approach to providing you with support and training on cloud accounting solutions means that your finance function does not have to stop.

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30th April 2020
graphs on paper

What is my breakeven turnover?

The current crisis has highlighted to many business owners how precarious business really is. Many businesses have suffered. Now is the time to start rebuilding and one of the first things to do is determine your break even point.

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30th April 2020
soldier holding gun

This is war!

This is war! Not only are we battling as a nation to preserve real lives, we (as business owners) are battling to preserve our way of life - our businesses. So as a leader here are three key actions you need to take to get your team through this period.

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20th April 2020
two keys in crumpled paper

Innovation Champions

The word innovation can conjure up images of disruptive developments such as online streaming services or companies like Uber. Fortunately, innovation doesn’t have to happen on a grand scale to make an impact in your business.

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14th April 2020
copper coins

How to use Technology to Reduce Debtor Days and Improve Cash Flow

Cash flow is king in any business. Yet cash flow is one of the areas that many businesses struggle to manage. We explain ways in which you can use systems to help chase your debts more efficiently.

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25th March 2020
red volkswagen toy van

What are the Tax Implications of Buying an Electric Van?

The Government has introduced a number of tax incentives and measures to encourage more people to use zero emission vehicles, and there are rumours that the planned ban on the sale of new diesel and petrol vehicles, as well as hybrids, could start as early as 2032.

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10th February 2020
man wearing blue hard hat using hammer

Construction Industry Pitfall Number 4: All About The Tax

Poor book-keeping alone doesn’t usually bring a business down. Usually the accountant will step in to clean the books up and calculate the company’s tax liabilities with time to spare. But it’s different for construction, primarily due to CIS.

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7th February 2020
5 light bulbs

Five Practical Financial Solutions to Help Tech Startups Grow

There is no doubt that the setting up of your own tech business is extremely appealing to many people. Who wouldn’t want to be the next Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg or Steve Jobs?

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3rd February 2020
man playing chess

Should Your Strategy be Fast Follower or First Mover?

Most of us are familiar with the term “first mover advantage” but sometimes the “fast follower” is the winner.

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27th January 2020
business chairs in empty office

Does Everyone Need a Desk?

Office space is expensive. Do you really need to have a dedicated desk for each and every employee?

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20th January 2020
graduates celebrating throwing hats in the air

How to Harness the Power of Alumni Networks

Making the Most of Alumni Networks. Whether it’s your University classmates or the colleagues you trained with at your first firm, we all have an alumni network.

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16th January 2020
calculation and coins

Construction Industry Pitfall Number 3: Cash Is King

Over the past 30 years we’ve worked with countless small and medium sized building and construction businesses. Many have flourished but unfortunately some have failed…. And cash flow is one issue which comes up time and time again.

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8th January 2020
carillion logo on railings

Construction Industry Pitfall Number 2: Construction Failures are on the Increase- How Can I Protect my Business?

Unfortunately failures in construction are common place. In 2018 Carillion went down owing £7bn, bringing down countless other businesses. Sometimes it is impossible to avoid the collapse of a business.But there's actions you can take to reduce the risk

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6th December 2019
colleges having a meeting viewed from above

How Can I Keep Key Team Members in My High Growth Firm?

We're often asked this question by our fast growing clients. Losing a key team member could have a major impact on your business. One solution we love is the Enterprise Management Incentive Scheme.

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4th December 2019
ash burning

How to Avoid Business Burnout

Stress related workplace burnout is now recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as an official medical diagnosis. Here are some tips to help to avoid burnout.

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28th November 2019
books in wooden book shelf

Our Top 10 Business Book List 2019

The Friend & Grant Top Ten Best Business Books for 2019. Whether you read, listen or watch we have some super suggestions for you….

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25th November 2019
girl looking at travel on phone

How to Manage Employees Who Have a Side Hustle

Side hustles are here to stay and they’re a good thing for employers. Employees with side hustles generally are more innovative, proactive and organised, but….

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25th October 2019
Power supply pillons at sunset

The Power of Saying "No"

It’s a simple word, but one that far too many of us have trouble saying. The problem is that always saying “yes” usually means that another project is delayed or fails. Worse still the project you have just said yes to doesn’t even align with your goals!!!!

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22nd October 2019
Egg hatching

How to Get Investors for Your Business

If you need funding for your business and want to attract investors, why not look at SEIS and EIS? They're tax schemes authorised by HMRC and provide generous tax incentives to the investor.

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17th February 2021
Telsa Electric car in feild at sunset

Time For A New Company Car? Why Not Make It An Electric Car?

Thinking about getting an electric or hybrid car for your company? The government has announced that there will be a zero P11D benefit for the drivers of electric cars from 2020/21. This is instead of the 2% scale charge that was originally included in Finance Act 2017 to apply for 2020/21.

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27th September 2019
man looking at sunrise on top of a cliff

Which is Better for Business - Being an Early Bird or a Night Owl or Doesn’t it Matter?

Whatever you think you are- an early bird or late owl- does the question matter as a business owner? I think it does matter- find out why your performance and that of your team could improve by asking the question and making changes to work routines.

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13th September 2019
The Do's & Don'ts of couple pushing trolly in a warehouse

The Do's & Dont's of Building a Successful E-commerce Business

Mark Devaney & Laura Wills, directors of e-commerce site, share their ‘do’s and don’ts’ about launching an e-commerce business. Whether you are starting out or already have an e-commerce; these are great tips.

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4th September 2019
Brexit flag

Are You Ready For No Deal?

Will your business be prepared if we leave the EU on 31 October without a deal?

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31st August 2019
Cargo Boat at night

Do You Need an EORI Number?

All businesses within the EU, from sole traders upwards, need an EORI number when importing or exporting any commercial cargo from or to the rest of the world (i.e. outside of the EU).

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23rd August 2019
horse monument sculpture

Authority Versus Leadership

Being a boss is easy. Being a leader is more problematical. Here are a few of my favourite leadership tips to help you build a great team.

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21st August 2019
gold coins

Where Has My Cash Gone?

Many business owners look at their bank balance to give an idea of how their business is doing, then when they sit down at the end of the year with their accountant to sign off the accounts, they have made a profit (or a loss) that does not match their bank – but why?

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15th August 2019
Man in blue shirt with tape measure

How to Get the Best Out of Your Marketing Agency

Why do some companies launch brilliant marketing campaigns and have spectacular success, but other companies spend lots of money and generate very little?

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29th July 2019
men cycling

Is Your Business Obsessed With Innovation

Every successful businesses has a special formula; they’re obsessed with innovation - it's in their DNA. There are several great tax breaks for companies that innovate.

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24th July 2019
architechture building construction

How to Scale Up Your Business

There’s lots of ways to grow a business: organic growth, acquisition or a merger. Don’t fancy those options then perhaps collaboration or strategic partnerships might be a better option.

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8th July 2019
birds eye view of exotic beach and blue ocean

Planning for Your Summer Holiday

Everyone needs a holiday to recharge their internal battery and to strengthen those vital family bonds. However getting away from the business is a problem in itself. Here’s some ideas!

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24th June 2019
book shelf in shape of head

Mistakes are Opportunities to Learn

One thing is certain in business. You and everyone around you will make mistakes. If we are all spending time making mistakes, it makes sense to learn from them.

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19th June 2019
padlock on green wooden door

How do You Lock in Key Members of Your Team?

For those business owners seeking success there is nothing more frustrating than finding that key person only for them to leave you. So how do you lock in key members of your team?

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23rd May 2019
gold bars

Make Sure You Keep More of Your Pot of Gold!

If you are building a business you must have an end goal. For most entrepreneurs that end goal is the wish for a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Hopefully we will all get there and all the effort will be worthwhile. Unfortunately someone else hopes you’ll get there too, it’s not a naughty leprechaun but someone equally as annoying, the tax man!

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13th May 2019
hand written checklist

The Importance of Good Corporate Governance

Good corporate governance is as crucial for SME’s as it is for large listed companies. Corporate governance refers to a set of internal policies, rules, and procedures that a company follows on a regular basis to make sure it operates in a fair, equitable, and appropriate manner.

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7th May 2019
the thinker by rodin

The Benefits of Silence

It’s amazing how things become clearer when there is no noise. It has enabled me to complete the first draft of my business plan for the next financial year, review our newsletter, think further about how to improve our service offering and write this blog!

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3rd May 2019
american football players

How to Create a High Performing Business

The backbone of a high performing business is a resilient workforce. You need to build a team that is highly motivated, high performing and consists of people who look forward to coming to work every day because they feel they are a part of the company and the bigger picture.

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23rd April 2019
doctor taking blood pressure

8 Items to Check on Your Website

Our website is our shop window; our sales pitch, information hub, it shows our credentials and tells people how they can get in touch. If it’s not working properly it has a big impact on the practice. Here are a few of the important factors for SEO on securing top search rankings

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23rd April 2019
How to stay productive when Travelling - Using a Cloud Accounting App - Yellow Camper Van

How to Stay Productive When Travelling

Business travel can be a real nuisance and unless you’re driving it should be really productive time. Here are our tips on How to Stay Productive when Travelling

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5th April 2019
Winstone Churchil giving a speech

Use Fewer Words for Clearer Communication

We waste so much time writing & reading long expansive sentences when a bullet point would be just as effective! Here is Winston Churchill’s memo to the War Cabinet about brevity.

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26th March 2019
building to represent building a marketing function

Build Your Marketing Machine in 7 Steps

Every business needs a marketing machine to help drive the growth. But you need to build the marketing action plan to help you. Here is our 7 step Guide to Building Your Marketing Machine

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14th March 2019
Row of dresses

Somebody Anybody Everybody Nobody

When employees know what they have to do, why, how and when, everything runs smoothly in your business. But if the most common statement uttered in your office is ‘That’s Not My Job’ or ‘It’s Not My Problem’ then the business descends into chaos.

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5th March 2019
Startup Guide to VAT Registration

Startups VAT Registration Get it Right!

For all startups knowing when to register for VAT is fundamental. Get it right and you could save £’000s in tax, get it wrong and there could be penalties and additional costs. The rules are fairly straightforward but unfortunately many businesses still fail to register on time.

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1st February 2019
welcome on board mat

Sales. How to Ask for the Business

Sales is all about the ‘ask’; you have to ask for the business. Asking doesn’t come naturally to everyone so, here is a checklist to help you get back into asking mode. Make sales, build a business and make more money.

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24th January 2019
forklift truck in operation

Introducing AHR Consultants – Our HR Business Support Partner

We are delighted to tell you that we have appointed AHR Consultants as our HR support supplier and partner. Here are some emerging HR trends that all businesses should be aware of.

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13th January 2019
Couple in a yoga pose

How Strong Is Your Balance Sheet?

Your balance sheet is important and shouldn’t be ignored. It’s visible to everyone if you’re a company so people can assess whether to do business with you or for a potential buyer to value the business.

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4th January 2019
credit cards in back pocket

Does Every Client Deserve Credit terms?

Most business failures could be avoided with a little care and attention. No one has the right to credit so don’t give it away unless clients have earned it. Read our tips and make sure your cash flow and your business doesn’t suffer.

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19th December 2018
Hour glass with red sand

My Top Ten Time Saving Tips

There’s never enough time to do anything! Here are my top ten tips for saving time and getting things done.

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17th December 2018
Hats on a stand

Keys to Success - The Art of Delegation

You know you should delegate but you don’t. Here are 3 ways to overcome the excuses as to why you don’t delegate.

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29th November 2018
the shard london at sunset

Seven Ways to Grow Your Business

We believe these are the seven ways to build a business. But thinking big, offering excellent customer experience and building real value in the business will help grow a small business into a great business.

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7th November 2018
large shark

The Power of Broke

Building a Business without cash means developing creative ways to promote a business. A lack of cash resulted in lots of creative way to build the businesses. From startups, through growing businesses to established businesses, there's example after example.

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23rd October 2018
footprint of a dragon

When Andrew Grant met Peter Jones

Friend & Grant Meet Dragon’s Den Star We have all watched Dragons Den and are in awe of the big chap that sits quietly at the end of the row with his fancy socks. So when our Andrew Grant had an invitation for a fireside chat with Peter Jones, he jumped at the chance. Peter...

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byrant house at night office

Book Your Discovery Meeting

Are you hungry for success? If you run a small to medium size business and you want to grow your sales, increase profitability and pay less tax then you have come to the right place.