Simple Hacks To Evolve Your Trade Skills Into A Successful Business

Many of us have dreamed of being our own boss. We look forward to days when we can choose our own hours and not have someone breathing down our neck. Of course, the reality of running your own business is longer hours and difficult clients! But the freedom and satisfaction of building something up to a successful business make it all worthwhile. How can you evolve what you do for your employer into that dream, successful business?

The first thing to do is check for demand. Unless there is a need for what you can do, you’re not likely to find any clients. Doing what you do for an employer is always going to be the safer option. But if you can find your potential clients and reach them effectively, your skills could soon be in demand. Marketing skills and knowledge are very handy here.

You’ll also need to be sure you own all the equipment you need. Employees are usually provided with the equipment they need to do the job. Self-employed or freelance workers must provide their own. If you work in construction, you may need to invest in things like industrial bonding adhesives from Kenyon Adhesives and industry standard tools to ensure you can fulfill the jobs you’ll be doing. If you are an IT specialist, chances are you’ll need some high-end computer equipment and software before you can start. Whatever trade you’re in, you’ll need to invest to get the high standard of equipment necessary to do your job.

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Before you rush into your boss’s office to quit, consider your financial security. You have a regular income and a pension that is boosted by your employer’s contributions. Giving that up could harm your future income and disrupt your cash flow immediately. Hold onto the job as long as you can. Build up a steady stream of new clients and a number of regular customers before you cut the cord.

Make sure you have a website detailing what you do. It should also include all your contact details. An enquiry form can be useful too. Use images relevant to your line of work. You may even consider making a YouTube video or writing some blog style articles about what you do. Use social media to increase your reach and attract more visitors to your website. Make sure you are registered with any relevant trade bodies too.


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As the enquiries start to stream in, you’ll need to put more thought to customer service. Are you always able to take the call? Are you promptly responding to enquiries? Could you upsell or cross-sell your services to increase the value of each customer? And are you making sure they will return to you again and again? If you find you’re running out of time to do these things, it could be worth investing in some assistance. This may be outsourced help or a member of staff.

If there is demand for your skillset, there is every chance you could make a business out of it. With the right approach, your entrepreneur skills could find you developing a company that grows. Will you set your sights high?

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Netting that Professional Goal

Netting that Professional Goal

We all want to feel a sense of progress in our professional lives, and outlining specific goals can be a helpful way to keep forward momentum. Unfortunately, outlining and achieving are two different thing.

Sometimes being genuinely good at your job just isn’t enough to get noticed. Basic unwritten rules could be holding you back, so read on for practical solutions, from knowing how often you should wash a bra to gift-giving etiquette.

Dress to impress

It’s a common maxim to ‘dress for the job you want, not the job you have,’ but it’s one that bears repeating, especially for women. It’s easy to shrug into the same well-worn outfit every workday, but less than impressive at important meetings. Whether you’re an entrepreneur looking for start-up funding, or at a multinational seeking promotion, dressing to impress pays … literally.

A useful tip is to emulate the people you look up to, and who already have the role you’d like to achieve; although office wear in many workplaces is more casual now than it’s ever been, looking professional is always important. Think about creating a polished look, which includes crisp shirts. To get the effect without the hassle of ironing, just hang your shirt on a coat hanger in the bathroom while you take a shower. The steam will make the creases drop out, without a drop of effort!

Also important are well-fitting bras, which can quickly lose their elastic and shape with too much washing. But how often should you wash a bra? For most people, aiming for a wash after every two to three wears is sufficient. You should use a cool temperatures alongside a mild detergent that’s kind to silks and lace and wash sports bras more regularly (as they are expected to see more wear).

Use this guide on how often should you wash a bra if you’re still uncertain.

The unwritten rules

When looking to make an impression professionally, it’s important to abide by an unwritten code of conduct. Here are three useful rules of thumb when it comes to gifting:

  1. Presenting close coworkers with gifts on a special occasion is totally appropriate, while you’ll often be expected to buy gifts for clients on behalf of your company. In some places, buying a gift for your boss is frowned upon, so be sure to check!
  2. If you do decide to give a gift, make sure it’s restrained and not too personal; think a potted succulent or chocolate selection – something nice but not too intrusive.
  3. If gifting to commemorate a particular festival, make sure your intended recipient actually celebrates it; whether that’s Christmas, Hanukkah, Diwali, Eid, or any other holiday.

Another important and generally unwritten rule is how much time you’re expected to spend working every day. This pressure might come from a demanding client who expects you to answer every email they send at 10pm, or from a culture of working late at your office. As long as you’re getting your job done, it shouldn’t matter when you leave.

Ultimately, you’re the one responsible for finding your own work/life balance, and there’s no shame in making changes if something isn’t right for you. Hopefully, these tips will help you work towards your professional goals while getting in some much-needed downtime too!

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The Secrets To A Better Office For Your Business

If your business has an office, then you need to take great care of it. Here are three things that will make your office a better place:

Fibre Optic Broadband

Internet access is a must for every business nowadays. And, you should try your best to get the best broadband connection possible. You need a connection that’s fast and reliable. The best way to achieve this is to install fiber optic cables in your office. They offer a much better broadband performance compared to a traditional connection.

The benefit of this is that it keeps your office connected at all times. There’s a very low chance your broadband will drop, and the speeds are high too. So, you can get your work done a lot quicker, and it increases productivity. Plus, it helps bring your business into the modern age and take advantage of great technologies. I must note that fiber optic installation isn’t available everywhere. In most city centers and urban areas, you’ll get it without a problem. But, if your office is in the middle of nowhere then you might have a problem. I’d strongly advise you to check if an office can have fiber optic installation before you move into it.

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Office Partitions

Office partitions are a fantastic way to improve your office. Why? Because they deal with two important things; visual appearance and productivity. Having partitions in your office can make life better for your employees. They’re less distracted if they have partitions blocking off the section they work in. It keeps people confined into little groups, and they get more work done.

As for the visual appearance of your office, partitions can make it look more classy. An open office looks a bit hectic and crazy. But office partitions gives it a more professional look. Plus, companies like Custom Wytelyne Powder Coating can add some color to your partitions too. So, you can make your office look more colorful and vibrant.

Fingerprint Security

The technology industry has given us some amazing things to use in the business realm. I’m a big fan of trying to bring technology into the office. And, I think fingerprint security is a brilliant way to do this. It can help make your office a lot more safe and secure. When your office is safe, it’s a positive on many levels. For one, your employees will work better if they feel safe. Secondly, you reduce the risks of things getting stolen or unwanted people getting in.

So, how will this work? Well, we’ve all seen fingerprint security on mobile phones, right? You register your fingerprint and use it to unlock the phone. Anyone with an unregistered print won’t be able to gain access. It’s the same concept; only the scanner is connected to your office door instead of a phone. When employees enter the building, they need to scan their fingerprint. It’s a cool and modern alternative to a regular security system. Plus it enhances your image as people will be amazed when they stop by and see this technology on your front door.

Improve your office by using the advice in this article. Trust me; you’ll see a big change in how your office feels and functions.

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Don’t Buy A Business Address Before You’ve Read This!

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When you think about setting up a business, you might want a home base for your company. An office or an establishment where your employees can work as a team every day. Or, you might set up your office in the comfort of your home. A home company certainly has it’s advantages with significantly lower costs and less responsibility. That said having an office automatically makes your business look more professional and well established. It’s your choice which route you take here. If you do want a business address though, I suggest you heed my advice.

Beware Of Old Properties

An old business property may look like a complete steal. Particularly, if you can grab a comfortably sized office for just under a hundred thousand. You might think that new office is a dream come true but do be careful. Especially if that office was built before 1981. 1981 was the last registered use of asbestos in a building. Buildings before this used asbestos for insulation purposes in roofs and walls. If you’ve ever bought a home, you’re probably aware of the issue with asbestos. It’s a potential health hazard and if disturbed, it can be quite dangerous. You might think, well I’ll just leave it alone then. Ah, but then it could seep out slowly and cause a health issue without you even realizing. It’s a risky game. Your best option is to get an asbestos survey after you buy the property. For more info, check out some surveyors online. If there is an issue you can get it removed before you start hiring.

Don’t Cheapen The Deal With A Lack Of Security


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You might go a different route and buy a new and expensive property. You can do this by saving cash in other areas but be careful which areas of your company you cut the costs in. Cutting costs of security could lead to new problems. If your business property isn’t properly guarded it may be targeted by criminals. They could steal expensive equipment and swipe customer data. It’s best to invest a little more into security and ensure your business acts as a deterrent. The best form of security is doing everything you can to guarantee thieves don’t even consider breaking in.

Careful Of Those Energy Prices

Energy prices aren’t a big deal as long as you have the freedom to change the company and get better rates. Unfortunately, some rented properties do not allow you to change your energy provider. Be careful renting a property like this because you could be stuck paying rates high above the market average. You always want freedom when choosing an energy provider. Particularly, now that so many are offering renewable energy to businesses across the globe.

A Prime Location Is Your Ticket To The Big Leagues


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Finally, make sure you buy a business property in a prime location. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to get a property in the middle of the city. You could buy one in an up and coming business park. If you do this, you’re sure to attract the attention of big clients that could bring your profits skywards.

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The Best Way To Buy B2B Equipment

When you want to run a successful B2B business, then investing in good equipment is an essential early step. However, if you’ve never been in this position before, identifying the best investment for your company can be extremely difficult. Getting your business fully equipped is going to take a lot of capital, which I’m sure you don’t want to waste. To make the whole task easier, here are some important tips for buying B2B equipment.

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Before you start reaching out to suppliers, you need to take the time to assess all your needs. If you make single, isolated purchases as and when you need them, you’ll only be setting yourself up for failure. Take a good look at your whole production process, and decide on some specific standards of quality and efficiency which you want to meet. While you’re doing this, don’t make the mistake of keeping your vision too limited. You’re probably going to need some very expensive machinery to get your business started, and if you need to buy replacements straight away it’s going to be a massive blow to your cash flow. You need to consider any future production targets and growth, and how the equipment you’re buying will accommodate for that.


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Once you have these fundamental criteria, my next tip is to spend a lot of time shopping around. To ensure you get the best return on these sizable investments, you need to carry out a lot of research into the quality of the equipment which you plan on acquiring. Simply reading online reviews will give you some information, but you certainly shouldn’t stop there. Start visiting trade fairs where you can talk to company reps in person, and see their machinery in action. There are probably countless trade shows linked to your industry, where high-end equipment suppliers such as Newnham Engineering set up exhibits and liaise with business owners like you. Whatever equipment you’re looking to buy, be sure to consider all of your options before settling.


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Finally, do a little more shopping around, this time for financing options. I’ve heard of a lot of established B2B business owners who are afraid to upgrade their current equipment due to concerns they have over financing. The first option you found may not be ideal for your needs, but there’s sure to be some kind of financing plan which is near enough perfect. When you have the right financing in place, you’ll have more time to look around at different suppliers, and be a much stronger negotiator when you’re liaising with these companies. When you’re looking over all the financing options you can get from different banks and institutions, don’t just stop at the interest rates. It’s also important to consider the percentage of your purchase the different creditors will finance. This goes for the equipment itself, and all the extras such as shipping, installation and further training for your employees.

Take this advice, and buying the best equipment for your B2B operation will become so much easier.

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The Biggest Problems Facing The Technology Sector Today

The technology sector is vast and growing rapidly. From the outside, it may seem like everything is fine and dandy in this business sector. However, there are many lingering problems facing the technology sector today. And, here are the three biggest:



Hackers are a huge issue in the technology industry today. The more tech we have, the more hackers we have. People are finding ways to hack into computer networks and steal important information. A few of the biggest companies in the world have been abused by software hackers in the last few years. Not too long ago, Sony’s PlayStation Network was down for ages because of a hack. It’s a problem that’s hard to clamp down on as hackers are good at covering their tracks. They often take credit for their work, but it’s hard to trace them. All tech businesses have to ensure that their devices and software are protected from hackers. Often, they get friendly hackers to try and break into their software before they release it. This helps them test if their defenses are good enough. Regardless, there will always be a way for someone to hack into something tech related. It’s an issue that won’t go away.

Source Code Problems

In the technology sector, there are loads of legal issues that pose problems. When dealing with software, there are loads of things that need to be taken into account. One of these things is the source code of a piece of software. There are source code agreements in place between many software licensors and licensees. The problem is, when software licensors go out of business, the licensee can be left without access to the source code. It’s a serious problem, as it can be bad for their business. Many companies choose source code escrow services to prevent this from happening. The escrow agent can hold the source code and give it to the licensee if the licensor goes out of business. This is a huge problem as many licensors have gone out of business and left the poor licensees without access to the source code. As such, they can’t continue to use or work on certain software.



Copyright Problems

Copyright is without a doubt the biggest legal issue in the technology industry. So many developers try and copy/steal ideas from other people. There are loads of cases where technology companies are suing their rivals for copyright. I believe two of the biggest tech companies in the world, Apple and Samsung, were involved in copyright disputes. The problem is, it’s so easy for someone to steal an idea in the technology sector. Many people will trial things and not but a patent on them. Then, someone picks up the idea, steals it, and makes it their own. It’s an issue that’s even worse for smaller businesses within this industry.

The biggest issue with all these problems is that they’ll never be solved. We’ll always have legal disputes, and hackers aren’t going away anytime soon. Tech companies have to brace themselves for the worst and do their best to prevent these problems.

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Help Your Grandparents Pick The Perfect Care Home

If you’re worried about your grandparent’s health or safety, it might be time to start talking about care homes. It’s not going to be the easiest conversation you ever have, but it could help make their life more comfortable in the long run. If your grandparent knows how concerned you and your parents are, it might give them the push they need to start the process. Instead of letting them sort everything out for themselves, why not help them. Your grandparents will appreciate your assistance and input, plus it will put your mind at ease. So to find the perfect care home for your grandparents here is what you need to do.

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Ask your grandparents what they want

It’s important to remember that it’s your grandparents moving into a care home and not you. What you might consider to be essential might vary from theirs. So before you do anything else, talk to them about what they would like. There are multiple kinds of care home throughout the UK and each cater to different needs. So understanding what they want beforehand is crucial to ensure they choose the right one. Talk to them about how much care they think they need and encourage them to be honest. They might think they need little assistance when in reality they need more extensive, specialist care. You also need to talk to them about where they want to be located. They might want to move closer to family or remain in an area they are familiar with.

Do research together

Research is a vital part of the process but can leave your grandparents feeling a little overwhelmed. So do what you can to help them find the information they need. Take your laptop to their home and start looking online for potential care homes. Research and talk through the varying types of care home available to them and which might be the best option. You should also look into how much it will cost and whether they are entitled to any support. The more information you can find the more informed your grandparent’s final decision will be.

Visit in person

Once you’ve got a few potential options in mind, you need to assess their standards. The best way to do this is by visiting in person. This can give you and your grandparents a more in-depth look at what living there would be like. Use this opportunity to talk to the staff and ask them questions. You can ask what the outcome of their last inspection was and if they use quality suppliers like Fairfield Care or Beaucare. You might also be able to talk to some of the residents and inspect the rooms while you are there too. This insight will be invaluable and ensure your grandparents move into a home that is clean, safe and well staffed.

Always remember to be patient and listen to your grandparent’s thoughts and opinions. This can be a stressful experience for them, and they may need time to come around to the idea. Be supportive to make sure the home they choose provides the best care possible.

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Don’t Skimp on These Essential Business Spends

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Allocating a business budget can be tough. You can’t afford to pay for everything you want. But spending money on the wrong things could spell disaster. You need to avoid investing your money in something that won’t benefit your business. However, the things you think might be beneficial could be different to what could actually contribute to your success. There are some areas you shouldn’t neglect, even when your budget is low and times are hard. Before you waste your money or dismiss something important, make sure that you’re putting some big bucks into these areas.


When the economy is struggling, many business owners cut their marketing budget. In fact, experts often warn against doing this, and some even suggest you should put more money into it. If you stop investing in marketing when times are tough, how are you going to keep bringing in the sales you need? Spending money on marketing and branding is an essential part of your budget. For smaller businesses, it’s often more sensible to outsource the task or at least some of it. For example, you might choose to outsource PPC advertising campaigns or content marketing.


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Your Staff

The old saying that if “you pay peanuts, you get monkeys” is most often true. If you want the very best in the business, you’re not going to get it by offering a meager salary. Of course, many newer businesses can’t afford to pay big bucks. But you should still be offering competitive salaries when compared to companies like yours. When it’s time to hire for new positions, investing in executive search firms and other talent agencies is worth it. The hiring process will never be cheap but putting some money into it can help you find the best staff.

Financial Services

You can’t overstate how important it is to have someone watching your numbers. A small mistake in your accounts could lead to disastrous consequences. It’s worth investing in financial services to save your business money and help you make more. A good accountant is the least that any business should have. Ensuring that the books are accurate, and that tax is paid on time is essential. Other financial services can be useful too. Companies can find ways to reduce spend and maximize profits.


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Legal Advice

Many small businesses don’t consider whether they need legal advice when they launch. However, businesses of all sizes should ensure that they have access to legal resources. It can be helpful to check that the business is following any regulations. Consulting with a lawyer helps to avoid infringing on trademarks too. As well as helping companies to avoid breaking the law, a lawyer can also help in the event of anything happening. If a person sues the company, access to legal counsel is vital. The company can have the representation they need to protect themselves or an employee.

Make sure your business budget is being spent on the right things. Don’t fall for unnecessary luxuries when you’re trying to be sensible.

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The Tech That’s Changing The Face Of Business

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There’s never been a point in history where the progress of technology has sat still, and in 2016 it’s evolving at a truly incredible rate! Barely ten years ago touch-screen phones were considered something revolutionary. Now, we can wear similar devices on our wrists! If you want your business to be as successful as possible, then you need to be on top of all the relevant tech trends. Here’s some of the ways that tech is changing business.

3D Printing

Although the initial hype explosion over this tech has settled, 3D printing is a niche that’s growing at an incredible speed. International shipments for 3D printers doubled in the year 2015, and have doubled again in 2016. With this massive expansion, user adoption is also expected to grow. Like many entrepreneurs, you might see 3D printing as a form of manufacturing. If you’re not in the secondary sector, you don’t have to worry, right? Wrong! While 3D printing has made a huge splash in the manufacturing sector, it’s also going to revolutionise the way we create prototypes. More and more medical applications are also coming to light. Furthermore, the equipment required for 3D printing is expected to become progressively cheaper, meaning reduced costs for any business that utilises it.


Drones have only really come into the public’s eye in recent years. When you first saw one of these things whizzing around the sky, you probably saw it as a toy; at best a niche hobby. These days, there are countless business applications opening up for them, and some of the biggest corporations are gobbling it up. Amazon Prime Air is poised to change the way we order products online forever. Some universities are looking into robotic drones, capable of acting as tour guides for their campuses. Drones have made a huge impact on the construction industry as well, with BIM systems and aerial photography of construction sites. Although there are still a few legal grey areas tied to drones, they’re certainly not going to disappear!

Wearable Tech

Google Glass may be defunct, but this certainly hasn’t marked the death of wearable tech. The release of the Apple Watch in 2015 marked the start of a smartwatch craze that’s only expected to grow. When enough people adopt this kind of tech, more and more mobile searches will be voice-activated and more dependent on geographical location. This is expected to completely change the SEO niche, and the way all kinds of businesses tackle their marketing. Interactive content will skyrocket in demand, with virtual data being blended with the real world. Furthermore, we may see a big shift in web design, and a totally new format of app which will be more friendly to wearable tech. This may sound irritating if you’ve only just hit your digital marketing on the head. However, it will pay off big time to start preparing for this kind of tech.

There’s no real way to predict how the evolution of technology will impact your bottom line. However, planning ahead is always a good idea!

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Make Your Business Easy To Reach In 3 Simple Steps

With the help of the internet and smartphones, communicating with your customers has never been so easy. From emails to phone calls, they can ask you questions and provide feedback which could help your business boom. But unfortunately many business owners make the mistake of avoiding talking to their customers. They might not provide contact information online or answer social media messages. But this is a foolish mistake to make. If your customers don’t feel appreciated, it could cause you to lose valuable business. It can also lower satisfaction levels and prevent you from developing a loyal customer base. So instead of hiding from your customers, make your business easier to reach in just three simple steps.

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Get a contact number

If your business has a contact number, it adds credibility and gives your customers more confidence to buy your products. While you could use your mobile number, this doesn’t always look professional. So you might want to consider using a mobile to landline number instead. This can provide you with a more established looking number which diverts calls to your mobile. So you can answer calls from your customers no matter where you are. Remember to answer every call promptly and in an efficient manner each time

Always ensure that you use the correct number on all of your promotional materials including business cards and flyers. You might always want to establish appropriate call times to avoid getting calls at inappropriate times of the day.

Create a business email

Many of your customers will favour using email to make contact with you rather than calling. So it’s essential that you provide one on your website, social media and business cards. They could use your business email address to inform you of a faulty product they have received or to chase up an order. Some customers may have queries they want to be answered before they commit to a purchase. Make sure your email address is relevant to your business and is not too difficult to find. You could create a contact form on your website if you’re concerned about giving an email address out. Make sure you or your employees make an effort to check for customer emails every few hours.


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Sign up to social media

In today’s technology-obsessed world, no business will thrive without a social media presence. You can use it to promote your business but also as a means of communication between you and your customers. So it’s crucial that you are signed up to all the major social media sites including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Make sure your customers are aware of these site with regular promotion. You could ask your customers to leave their thought on photos of your product or to ask questions. Just remember to respond to every message or question in a timely manner. Again, check your feed regularly and make sure every response is well written.

You should now have a more reachable business and happier customers as a result of completing these steps. Encourage your customers to get in touch with feedback, suggestions, and even complaints. This will show them that customer satisfaction is an important factor within your business.

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