Protecting Your Business From Extreme Weather

Whether your business is based in Britain or overseas, the impact of extreme weather can be very damaging and result in a serious loss of revenue. The effects of global warming are now being felt throughout the world, and contrary to popular opinion, this does not always involve and increase in temperature. Global warming can cause unpredictable wealth conditions, including very cold spells and high winds. In order to protect your business, it’s essential that you implement weather-proofing policies that will benefit staff and customers.

Plan Ahead

In order to limit the damage that adverse weather conditions can do to your business, it’s important to plan ahead. If your business doesn’t already have an inclement weather policy, it’s time to have one drawn up. All employees should be aware of what the rules are and what they should do in the event of extreme weather. No one wants to struggle all the way to work in difficult conditions to find that the building is closed. Your inclement weather policy should name the person(s) responsible for announcing closures and where employees will be able to find this information.

Working and Buying Remotely

Staff should be able to work from home in the event of extreme weather, preventing your business from losing the day’s labour. Contemporary businesses have the advantage of a wealth of technological solutions for remote communications, and bad weather conditions provide a perfect opportunity to use them. Google Docs allows employees to access customer information, contact lists and information about their daily tasks, all without entering the office. Every 21st Century business should have a strong online presence, and this will enable customers to keep shopping and stay in contact even during a spell of bad weather. Working and buying remotely is essential for keeping your business operational when unforeseen circumstances arise.

In the Event of Power Loss

Adverse weather conditions can have a big impact on things like power lines and electricity supplies. All businesses require power to remain functional, and if this is compromised, your company stands to make a significant loss of revenue. Retailers like Critical Power Supplies provide specialist generators for uninterruptible sources of power and these can be hugely advantageous for business preparing for a season of unpredictable weather. A generator will allow your business to remain up and running and profitable, regardless of the conditions outside. 

How to Create the Most Attractive Workplace for Employees

If you want to attract the top talent to your business, you have to provide employees with a workplace that they can be proud of. Staff need to feel valued and comfortable in their working environment before they will be able to really give the best of themselves, and as an employer or manager, it’s your job to make this happen.

Fostering Cooperation and Creativity

A positive atmosphere in the workplace is essential for productivity and employee motivation. Some businesses make the mistake of valuing high pressure and high stress environments, as they mistakenly believe that this will make their staff work harder and keep them on their toes. Stress actually reduces productivity and prolonged periods of stress can have a negative impact on the health of employees. Negative management techniques like shouting or using a bullying tone should be dispensed with altogether. Staff should feel like they are able to share creative ideas and make suggestions without being torn down or dismissed. If you are aware of any cattiness or backstabbing, this should be dealt with swiftly and eradicated. Employees must be encouraged to cooperate rather than compete with one another.

Promoting Health and Productivity

When you’re interviewing new candidates, if they choose to accept the position, you need to show them an office that they will be comfortable working in. Offices should be light and open, with plenty of windows and space for employees to sit during their breaks and lunch hours. Natural light has been proven to boost productivity, so make sure that your staff get as much of this as possible. Ikea have pledged to replace all light bulbs with LED lights by 2015, but you don’t have to wait that long. Retailers like Bright Lightz offer LED bulbs at competitive prices, and these give superior illumination to office environments during the winter months or late hours. Another bright idea is to provide employees with a choice of healthy options to snack on during the working day, and plenty of water coolers so that staff stay hydrated and are able to concentrate for longer periods of time.

Team Activities

Educate your team leaders in the importance of employee bonding. This can be done through the organisation of team activities like days out and socials, taking place outside work hours. If the members of a team get along with one another and feel well-liked among their colleagues, they will thrive in their working environment and be more likely to go above and beyond the call of duty in giving their best work.


Establishing Yourself in the Retail Business

If you’ve got a head for business or that famed entrepreneurial streak, starting your own company can be an incredibly rewarding experience. You’ll be your own boss and making profits that are intimately tied to your own decision making skills and innovations. However, those looking to break into retail must be aware of the vast and highly competitive nature of the industry. Small start-ups can be successful, so follow these simple steps to get your business idea off the ground.

Is Retail Right For You?

You need to be committed and extremely self-motivated to be successful in retail. Larger chains and high street brands are often able to offer goods at a reduced price, and this is how they undercut their smaller competitors. Think about the amount of time you’ll be able to devote to your business, and whether you need to seek funding in the form of a start-up loan or grant from the government. It’s definitely worth looking into the help available for new entrepreneurs.

Doing Your Research

Before investing any money in a business idea, it’s important to make sure that you know enough about the market you’re planning to enter. Many retail markets are already oversaturated, so a unique product or way of offering a product is essential. Think about whether there’s a gap in the market that you can fill and consider what your customers will want from you. The most successful businesses place customers and customer service at the centre, and provide a shopping experience that is a little different from the status quo. Find out what your nearest competitors are selling and how they go about this, and draw up a business plan that will allow you to better them.

Online or on the High Street?

Renting a commercial property can be very expensive. Retail outlets need to be in prime locations to get the customer attention they need to survive. Don’t place your business outside the city centre or in a residential suburb. Customers want to be able to browse in convenient locations rather than making special trips to a shop that is out of their way. A more cost-effective solution might be to rent a temporary or semi-permanent business space, like those available from Neptunus Structures. Many small retail business start online, as this can dramatically cut down on overhead costs and allow you to establish real brand presence and client base before you splash out on a commercial premises. 

5 Innovative and Affordable Advertising Solutions for Startups

As a startup, the whole idea of advertising may be ludicrous, especially if you don’t even have a budget to pay your employees. If this is the case, you have to get creative. Not only do you need to think outside the box, but you also have to find completely new ways to transform the box. Luckily, there are many different innovative ways to advertise without breaking the bank. These methods of promoting and garnering exposure for your business will also be incredibly effective. Sometimes, it is the simplest idea that gets the biggest response. Here are five innovative and affordable advertising solutions for startups. Continue reading 5 Innovative and Affordable Advertising Solutions for Startups

5 Restaurant and Fast Food Franchise Buying Tips

The restaurant business is one of the most risky industries that you can invest in. Most restaurants fail within the first year of opening. What happens if the public is not interested in the food you have to offer? What happens if they don’t like your food? If you don’t pack your restaurant within the first six months, you can pretty much kiss your restaurant business goodbye. This is the reason why many people interested in opening a restaurant go for a franchise – the marketing is already built in and you know that people like the food. Here are five restaurant and fast food franchise buying tips. Continue reading 5 Restaurant and Fast Food Franchise Buying Tips

5 Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Training Tips for Businesses

It is generally agreed amongst savvy business owners and operators these days that workplace diversity is a major asset. And this tenet doesn’t just apply to multi-national conglomerates anymore. Diversity in the workplace, including employees of different genders, races, religions, economic backgrounds, nationalities, ages, family status, and more, provides for a variety of different experiences that expand the scope of the company think tank and lead to a wide range of opinions and viewpoints. This is great news for the company looking to diversify because it allows for a virtual in-house focus group. Although one person obviously doesn’t speak for an entire cultural or economic standpoint, for example, having a different point of view can only help companies to cater to a wider range of potential customers. And with the global economy in much easier reach thanks to internet and mobile technology, this sort of thinking is imperative for growth. It is for this reason that you need to implement a diversity and inclusion training program to ensure that all of your employees exercise tolerance in the workplace, treat each other with respect, and value the contributions of their coworkers. Here are a few things you might want to consider along the way. Continue reading 5 Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Training Tips for Businesses

Managing Your Small Business: 5 Tips to Keep You Motivated

When you first decide to launch your small business venture, you’re likely very motivated to get the doors open and start earning some money. You have probably decided to open shop on your own as a way to get out from under the thumb of a supervisor, be your own boss, and finally see the fruits of your labor coming back to you. But starting a business is no easy undertaking. Even if you have a background in business and you are familiar with the industry you’re entering, you still have to do research, pen a business plan, secure funding, find a location, and put the whole act together. It’s a lot of work, to put it mildly. And once you’ve gotten your company off the ground, you’ll face an uphill battle to gain clientele and stay afloat until you can build up a reputation and following that provides you with enough profits to be solvent. In short, you can easily get burned out on the whole deal. So here are just a few tips to keep you motivated when it comes to managing your small business. Continue reading Managing Your Small Business: 5 Tips to Keep You Motivated

How Are Secured Personal Loans Better Than Unsecured Personal Loans?

A personal loan is one wherein the borrower receives consumer credit for personal use. There are two different kinds of personal loans. When secured personal loans are applied for, the borrower has to pledge an asset to the lender, which will serve as collateral. When the borrower fails to make payments, the lender has the right to repossess the asset and sell it to regain the money for the debt. On the other hand, an unsecured personal loan does not require any collateral to hold up the debt.

But how can a secured personal loan better than an unsecured loan?

  1. There is a higher chance of obtaining flexible terms

In the case of a secured loan, the borrower provides the lender with something to make sure that the loan will be paid in the form of collateral. Since there is collateral to hold onto, the lender will be more likely to agree to favorable lending terms. They may agree to fair interest rates and possibly even lower fees.

  1. It is easier to obtain

Since unsecured personal loans do not require collateral but lenders are stricter with the requirements for application. All who attempt to take out an unsecured loan must have good credit. For married couples, one spouse can even affect the score of the other. On the other hand, applying for a secured loan can be a little less of a hassle. There are fewer requirements and sometimes, good credit is not the primary basis for approval.

  1. The borrower won’t go into further debt

In an unsecured loan, lenders will impose harsh penalties for late payments, compounding the original lack of funds. They may offer to ‘easier’ payment terms, but that only takes a greater toll in the long run. If, on the other hand, a borrower can’t pay a secured loan, then at least they already know what they’re in for.

Make sure to learn more about secured personal loans from before making any decisions.

How to Consolidate Loans Easily

Lately, if you have opened your mail or watched TV, you will know that there are a number of companies out there eager to help you in consolidating your loans, lowering your interest rates, cutting your debt in half and helping you get rid of your debt quickly. Indeed, it makes perfect sense for people to consolidate all their high interest loans as well as their credit card debt into a single loan that offers more manageable payments with a low interest rate. However, it is essential for people to proceed with caution when they decide to consolidate loans if they don’t want to end up paying far more than necessary. Here are the steps they can follow: Continue reading How to Consolidate Loans Easily

Net Promoter Score – Identify Customers to Promote Your Business

Despite the advances in marketing tactics, the best form of promoting your business is still your customers. Word of mouth is even more accessible now we have a multitude of social media networks to chirp on. And people are talking more than ever!
Businesses can exploit modern behaviour by using a Net Promoter Score (NPS) to identify customer loyalty. The system takes measuring the level of customer satisfaction one step further and determines how happy your customers are with the service and product you provide. Continue reading Net Promoter Score – Identify Customers to Promote Your Business