Many business owners forget about using the services of professionals that could be beneficial to their business such as lawyers and accountants. Instead, they head into the business world at full speed without even a passing thought towards the possibilities that services like this offer. They do this for a few reasons. Arguably one of the major considerations is financial. Business owners can’t help but see an accountant as another paycheck or bill that they need to cover. As well as this, they rarely understand the important role an individual like this can fill in their company. You shouldn’t make the same mistake. Instead, you should learn how an accountant could benefit your company and put it in a stronger position. However, before we look at the benefits, it’s interesting to examine when you should hire an accountant.
Day One Or In Time For Delegation?
There are two options to consider when deciding on the right time to hire an accountant. You can hire from day one at the starting point of your company. This makes a lot of sense as there are many jobs in that first year that will be a lot easier with a trained accountant at your side.
For instance, you will be putting together your business plan, decided what funds and resources to invest where. An accountant can help you make the right choices here and advise you on how to use your capital in the most effective ways. With access to financial software, an accountant will also be able to help you understand projections about the future of your company. The benefit of getting a service like this early on is that you can avoid making mistakes with financial planning that need to be corrected by an accountant later on. Essentially, an early hire could save you more money in the long run.
An accountant can help you set up your finances the right way. For instance, you may want to think about using cloud-based software to manage your business accounts. Skilled accountants from top firms can set up this software at the beginning. So, as well as having experts monitoring and organizing your accounts, you’ll be able to check on them yourself.
You’ll find that legality and financial issues often collide in your company. As such, usually, accountants and lawyers work together to fulfill your business requirements. There are a number of different business models that you can choose for operations within your company. The legal structure can vary, and an accountant can look at all the options with you to find the most suitable possibility for your business.
Of course, the other option is to begin your business and then choose an accountant when you are ready to delegate. But, as we have shown, this decision is filled with pitfalls. You might find that by the time you’re ready to hand the accounts off to someone else, they are already in a terrible state and need fixing.
Role Of Accountants In Business
We have already mentioned a few of the roles an accountant can have in the early days of your company. They can be involved in everything from setting up accounting technology to choosing the right legal structure, but there are many more.
You might think that it’s quite easy to understand whether your company is doing well on the market. Generally speaking, if you’re making a profit, you might assume your company is stable. But, you could have a number of different outgoings, investments, loans and incomes to try and dissect. Understanding the accounts of a medium sized business can be complicated. That’s why you should use your accountant to help explain the situation to you. This way, you’ll understand your true position on the market.
Keeping financial records in order is always going to be important for your business. On a basic level, keeping an accurate history of your finances will make things a lot easier if you decide to sell your company. It’s one of the first factors that potential buyers investigate. Financial records will also be a huge asset during the time of taxation or if you are audited by the government. An audit can be a daunting prospect for new business owners, but with an accountant, it can be relatively pain-free.
Although, if you hire an accountant there’s also the possibility that you are never audited in the first place. Various issues cause businesses to get audited. For instance, you might have excessive write-offs or mistakes on your tax returns. With an accountant on your team all year around, these errors should never come into play.
There will be plenty of situations where an accountant could be a fantastic advisor. For instance, you might be deciding whether to buy equipment for your business second hand or brand new. An accountant will be able to walk you through the financial benefits and disadvantages of each choice so that you can make a final informed decision.
One of the main basic advantages of hiring an accountant is that you’ll have more time for other areas of your business. If you’re not delegating finances to an accountant, you could be spending several hours every day on the accounts. This will drag down the efficiency levels in your business model and let’s not forget, you could be making mistakes as well. Eventually, these mistakes will need to be corrected, and that means you’ll need to hire an accountant sooner or later.
Ahead Of The Curve
Finally, an accountant can help you get ahead of financial issues. From day one, you can think about the future of the company and look at financial estimates. Don’t forget, accountants have contacts in the industry that you won’t be able to use. They will be able to examine the financial market for you and use their resources to provide you real-time data so you can make adjustments to your business model. As such, accountants can do more than just keep your business finances in check. They can help your company grow into the future.
Benefits of Team Building Activities at Work
Off-site team building events are recognised in my businesses as pivotal to keeping staff focused, productive, and happy in the workplace. Also, the change of routine encourages employees to unwind and learn more about their work peers. You may not want to know this statistic, but on average, all workers spend over 13 years of their life working. This fact may depress some of you while it may have the opposite effect and motivate you, and this is due to the different personalities we spend a lot of time with, in the workplace.
A day out of the office with management and colleagues can be fun and provide other benefits. Team building activities for work have been proven to encourage better communication and lift productivity.
Here’s another interesting opinion, did you know experts say there are only five types of people from which 16 personalities are construed? The ‘five-factor’ model gives you insight into your staff’s personality types and their strengths and weaknesses, as well as how they can perform in teams. It’s worth researching into the basic personality types of your staff before witnessing how they get on together during a group event.
Regular Team Building Exercises Benefits
Get to know the different personalities in your office
Employees are not robots, and they react in their own way to change and how they interact with their colleagues and management.
How a team member deals with challenges and the new environment will reveal more of their personality. Using an offsite location for team building will encourage more openness and present the leaders from the followers among your staff.
Increasing productivity and motivation
The camaraderie among workmates increasing productivity as well as foster individual performance. Self-confidence and feeling at ease in the company of other people will lift overall company output, and future proof the business as a strong competitor.
Working in a team means everyone has to deal with personal and opinion differences. And that is the reason why effective communication is critical. Not every worker has a friendly or outgoing personality, and this is something that needs to be acknowledged. Some people are shy and timid, while others are naturally extroverted.
A team-building activity is one of the best solutions to break these barriers and gaps in communication. Team building involves games and other recreational activities forcing everyone to connect on a deeper level. It is one of the simplest ways to get everyone talking and conveniently align their precepts according to the values of the company.
As such, when staff return to work, there will be less reluctance to share their opinions openly in communication and transparency speeds up the identification of issues that need resolving, thus improving overall productivity.
Reinforcing a positive work culture
We all need to know how we perform outside our comfort zone, yet most personalities shy away from putting ourselves to the test. When the team day out is ‘work’ there’s no way out, with attendance compulsory, so we look for commonality, familiarity and find our group culture. Plus there’s time to work on the goals and visions of a company with the whole team altogether. On returning to the workplace the renewed energy among the workers, even the more introverted personality types who are expressing their emotions more freely, is proof these days offsite are good for business.
There’s little doubt that happy and satisfied staff is the foundation of every successful business and investing in regular company-wide team building is a low-risk strategy for apositive work culture.
Start the new year with an offsite activity or event, so your workers can come together, share their holiday experiences and reignite their focus on their job and how your business will meet its targets.
3 Terrific Niche Brands To Watch In 2020
Some successful businesses operate in very crowded marketplaces. For example, Amazon’s offering is as broad and deep as the river it borrows its name from – and since it isn’t the only operator in the online shopping stakes, it has differentiated itself through the speed of delivery and responsive customer service.
At the opposite end of the scale are organizations that are incredibly specialist in their offerings. With USPs (Unique Selling Propositions) being founded on products and services that are niche and in a league of their own, i.e. without competitors.
However, to survive in business, niche operators have to strike a fine balance between adapting their range sufficiently to cater to changing tastes and that of diluting their offerings so much that they no longer can claim a different category or point of different i.e. they’re now regarded as generalists.
There are specialists who manage this balancing act brilliantly – so if you’re in the same boat, with a niche business, you can learn a thing or two from for the successes of proven brands. With that in mind, here are three terrific niche brands to watch in 2020.
Few people of Scottish extraction can hear ‘the skirl of the pipes’ without the hairs on the back of their necks standing up and the blood surging furiously around their tartan hearts.
And don’t forget that it’s not just people in Scotland who love bagpipe music – there are bagpipers in immigrant communities of Scots all around the world.
Scottish music specialists McCallum Bagpipes are more than happy to serve this niche market with the beautiful artisan pipes they craft in their Kilmarnock factory before shipping them far and wide.
With an informative website, snazzy showroom and modern manufacturing techniques, this is one traditional business that’s moved with the times.
In any industry, technological advances and changing tastes mean that some products inevitably become obsolete. However, with the gentleman’s fashion accessories gurus, Albert Thurston, they’ve bucked the trend, and kept their products in demand, because their braces and sock suspenders have providence. Consumers want to be associated with the brand that has been proudly manufacturing quality garments since 1820.
Albert Thurston is enjoying a resurgence, perhaps thanks in part to the plethora of retro TV shows and longstanding movie series regularly hitting small and silver screens. If you happen to be a fan of Peaky Blinders or James Bond and you believe that classic accessories never go out of style, you’re probably a dedicated follower of this type of heritage brand.
When canny Scotsman James Ormiston first started selling spring wire for wigs and corsets in London in 1793, he surely couldn’t have predicted that today, wire specialists Ormiston Wire would still be thriving as an innovative family-owned business.
Wigs aren’t part of their current product offering, but this age-old business has survived by diversifying into everything from catenary wire for architectural installations to the fine wire for TV puppets. Through adapting the same core material to the needs of diverse markets, Ormiston has steered a steady ship for generations.
Take a leaf from the business books of these three brands and your own startup might still be serving customers a couple of centuries from now – with the right approach, carving yourself a niche can still be a recipe for success.
That’s our list! There are many more successful brands that stay true to their category and avoid diversifying as a catch-all strategy to grow sales and revenue. Staying niche and small is often a better strategy for the longevity of a brand. Share your own niche business advice in the comments section.
Why Gold: Our Top 3 Tips
Gold has always been popular and it’s where many investors today put their money during tough economic times. In fact if you see the price of gold going up dramatically it could be a indication of tough times ahead.
Buying and selling gold is a favourite pastime of hobbyists and of course it’s also a business with thousands of product and service suppliers around the world making their way in the business world via their expertise in the dealings of the precious metal.
So if you’re keen to invest in gold, you’ll need to know the ins and outs and not get too carried away with the romance of it all. It’s easy to lose your hard earned funds through ignorance and bad investment strategies.
Investing in gold over the long term is considered a low risk strategy so it’s not going to get your rich quick. Here’s some tips before you dip your toe in the yellow stuff.
Investment Risk Profile
Seek to understand then to be understood as Dr Stephen Covey says from his ‘7 habits of highly successful people’.
Wherever you start out, seek to learn first and take action second. Your goal is to learn all you can about your investment risk profile which is essentially the trade off of risk versus profit. Once you know if you’re high risk, medium or low risk you can then take the appropriate steps to invest.
Many investors that prefer other asset classes like real estate also invest in gold and shares. Real Estate investing also has it’s low risk and high risk strategies so if you’re already a real estate investor you’ve got some transferrable skills and you’ll be aware of your underlying risk profile. You’ll also know that to do well in any investment or business it takes time – lots of it.
The saying: an overnight success takes 10 years is spot on. There really is a sequence of events and even though we can learn from the mistakes of others, it actually takes time to learn of the mistakes of others! So hold back, don’t naively jump in and take unnecessary risks.
There’s another saying: if it sounds to good to be true it is.
Like any any industry and business, there are always scammers and rogue buyers to watch out for. You’ll want to know how to safely buy and sell gold. There will be some interesting stories online re. scammers and foul play and it’s heartbreaking to learn of other’s misfortunes but there’s a lesson in it for you. Knowing the types of scams, and cyberattacks is all part of lowering the risk to you and your investments.
Look Before You Cross The Road
It may be an odd title for this section but there’s a reason for it. Too often – fools rush in before they’re ready so research, read books, join discussion forums, sign up for newsletters, you need to do the lot. Plus you’ll need to get professional advice from your investment advisor, lawyer and accountant.
Remember you can never know too much about an industry especially when you’re investing it and learning never stops. There’s always new strategies and different conditions that can make or break economies and living in a global economy as we all do today means we can be forewarned by events before they actually hit us in the pocket and that’s way you’ve always got to stay on top of your game.
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