Monthly Archives: February, 2020

Why an Outside Perspective Is Essential to Your Company’s Growth & Success

February 21st, 2020 Posted by Uncategorized 1 thought on “Why an Outside Perspective Is Essential to Your Company’s Growth & Success”

Every business and organisation needs to get that outside perspective. You are too close to what you do to be truly objective. You need people who can push and move you forward.

At the start of the year, you may have felt like you have exhausted all of your resources and were stuck on where to go next. This is when you may want to consider opting for outside guidance, especially if you are looking to achieve a significant amount of growth or change. Every so often — whether things are going unbelievably well or spiralling out of control — you need an outside perspective.

One way to ensure that your business is on the appropriate path for growth is making sure that your company is implementing the correct methods of financial planning and strategy. Outside expertise can make a massive difference for your business, especially if your business is still smaller than you hoped to be. In addition to bringing a sustainable long-term strategic plan that will help you improve your business while remaining profitable, they also bring fresh perspectives and help point out challenges you may have not even noticed existed.

Trying new things without guidance could potentially lead to making easily avoidable and very costly mistakes. However, trying new things with the proper advice and having a hand to lead you through the common roadblocks can truly benefit you and help your business reach its greatest potential. Now may be the time to consider how much your business could truly benefit by bringing a part-time director on board.

Your board members can help you see the forest through the trees — evaluating what’s worth worrying over and what doesn’t deserve your attention. They can also help the company expand its areas of expertise, proactively evaluate and mitigate risks, and increase credibility. Don’t fly blind. If you’re thinking about growth capital or an exit, a board of directors can help navigate important decisions along the way.

So it’s not exactly an “outside” point of view — but your employees will have worthwhile feedback that you’d be loathe to ignore. Pick their brains for their take on your business model, leadership style, senior management, marketing strategy, and more. More junior employees are more likely to hear honest reviews of your products or service offerings from customers than you are as CEO.

In the constantly evolving and fast changing pace of business, leaders need to call upon and benefit from others’ insights, opinions, expertise, and critiques to ensure that they are relevant, desirable and the best place to go for both their employees and clients/customers.

Julie Barber, Founder & CEO of Spark! Consulting talks about looking at your company through an investors’ eyes. https://vimeo.com/392715410

If you’re looking to raise investment for your business, we have an exclusive session with Spark! Consulting next Tuesday 25th February which will give you a clear understanding of what investors are looking for and a step-by-step guide to the process of getting ready for investment.

If your company is looking to raise between £250K- £10m, you’ll really benefit from this event as you’ll be hearing from the most experienced Finance and Commercial Directors who’ll be able to answer all your questions about raising investment

Tickets are £49.50+VAT Click Here To Purchase

How To Fall Back In Love With Your Business Again

February 14th, 2020 Posted by Uncategorized 1 thought on “How To Fall Back In Love With Your Business Again”

When you started your business, it probably felt like falling in love: it’s exciting, exhilarating, and new. You want to savour each moment and be your very best every minute of every day. However, after reality sets in, you may discover that not everything about running a business is so amazing. There will be tasks you don’t like to do, activities you find stale and boring, technical difficulties to test your patience, and clients who might challenge you and your business.

Thankfully, however, you can rekindle the flames of passion for your business after the honeymoon is over by making a few subtle changes in how you work and think. We’ve put together the following tips to help you love your work and business again:

Reinvent The Wheel

One way to fall back in love with your business is to find ways to “reinvent the wheel” and make your business more efficient. Take an objective look at how you’re managing your employees, producing your products and services, and running your business overall to identify where your productivity hits roadblocks. Then, brainstorm with your team to discover tactics and tools that can improve workflow and yield better results. Taking a moment to review your business, when you feel rested and ready to strive again, is hugely advised. You’ll solve loads of your business issues and set yourself up for another successful stint.

Delegate:

This is common amongst business owners- you don’t need to do everything yourself! If they really don’t need your personal attention or expertise, consider handing them over to someone who is perfectly capable of tending to them. There are so many different tasks that are involved when running a business, and there will be some that you may find monotonous. Even if you had all the skills to do an outstanding job in all areas of your business, you will still be constrained by time. Most days, you’ll be lucky if you even get done what you planned to get done when your day started.

Find New Growth Opportunities:

Always begin with identifying your growth opportunities, whether they are consumer based, market based, or even competition based. Create a clear definition and understanding of how different growth strategies can impact your particular business performance. These tasks will help provide you with a direct road-map towards success.

This is when Innovation is key. You as a business owner need to implement innovation and creativity into your business strategy, where you can create a culture of innovation and make space for creative thinking. It can also increase the likelihood of your business succeeding and can create a more efficient process that can result in better productivity and performance.

Have A Work/Life Balance:

Whilst having a successful career is an important part of many people’s lives, it’s also important to find a good balance between your job and your personal life. Not only is this great for your well-being but it also ensures you’re getting the best out of both parts of your life. As crucial as it is to schedule time to get your work done, it’s important to schedule time for breaks. Take some time out to take a few breathers throughout the day. Use this time for things like checking your LinkedIn, company’s latest news, or just simply relax.

Don’t lose hope if you’re not currently feeling fondness for your business like you used to. Although the spark of adoration may have dimmed as you face the day-in-day-out realities and challenges of entrepreneurship, all is not lost.

With a little effort, adjustments, and patience, you can revive your affection and keep your love alive.If you struggle with doing any of the above, we’re always here to help you move your business forward.

3 Ways To Be Investment Ready

February 4th, 2020 Posted by Uncategorized 0 thoughts on “3 Ways To Be Investment Ready”

Are you contemplating transitioning ownership of your business to the next generation? Selling the business to a third party? Or looking to attract equity capital or debt to achieve expansion plans? Well, in any of these scenarios, your business needs to be Investment Ready to maximise the success of your chosen path.

Here are our three suggestions to help you get Investment Ready:

Become ‘Pitch Perfect’

An important part of growing any business is the ability to clearly and effectively pitch your business plan to investors and potential partners.

Like all relationships, you only have one chance to make first impressions. Moreover, most investors are very busy and their time is precious. This means you only get a single shot towards success with each investor, so you better hit the bullseye. Investment readiness is a process that requires being prepared.

Understand your business so you can address all the questions adequately, be clear on what it is you want and your objectives, as it’s as important the investor aligns with this as much as you fulfil their objectives. Anticipate what they are likely to ask and think about certain scenarios. Make sure their potential questions will not expose flaws in your business strategy.

Get the right team around you

When you step into this part of your growth process and begin to expose yourself to potential investor groups, investment readiness is pivotal in ensuring your likelihood of success. Having a Finance Director behind you is crucial when you’re approaching these investors. Within your team, you can; look at the stage you are currently in, and try to find out what you need to do to make the criteria for the next level. What is the fastest way forward? Are you working on the right things?

Finance Directors are there to help you through this growth process. You need someone who will push you further than you will push yourself, someone with a different perspective, someone who’s in your corner.

Any investment ready business should be in a position to clearly demonstrate a strong team, a deep understanding of their market and competition, a detailed understanding of their business model, how the business makes money and what traction and key milestones have been achieved. Finance Directors can guide you through this process as they are an indispensable asset in helping to move your business in the right direction.

Use A Step-By-Step Guide

Investment readiness is a process that requires being prepared. It’s surprising how some business owners don’t invest in the investment readiness process in the same way they would invest in a product launch. Both are about making a sale and are crucial to success.

If you’re looking to raise investment for your business and would like a step-by-step guide to the process so it actually happens, we’re hosting an exclusive workshop with Spark! Consulting on 25th February to help you get ‘Investment Ready’ for the year.

There’ll be experienced Finance Directors in attendance, ready to answer all your questions regarding raising investment and to go through the step-by-step guide to the investment readiness process.

For tickets and more info click here https://investmentreadyfeb.eventbrite.co.uk/?aff=LFT

We want to help your business be ready for investment this year and ‘pitch perfect’ when it comes to meeting potential investors.

The tips above will help you eliminate many of the obstacles that make it harder to be investment ready. Not only will these tips make you more effective, but they will also help you avoid the inevitable stress and anxiety involved in raising investment.

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