|Small Business Information|
The Greatest Challenges the Internet Consultant Faces!
While there are few career paths that some would call perfect, being a consultant comes pretty close to having it all. Yet while it is one of the best ways to earn a living, there are challenges and pitfalls that are sometimes overwhelming and unexpected.
When analyzing, identifying and exploring the most specific challenges high on the consultant's list, there are probably a few that would probably be considered the greatest of all. Whether your goal is to help a client increase sales, or if your objective is to show them how implementing a new idea will make things more effective, challenges are always to be faced.
One very huge challenge most consultants face is dealing with a client who has lofty goals, but lacks a forward thinking attitude. Understandably, the client wants to achieve a great deal but when it comes to a client's business, more often than not they're fearful about spending money. Because some clients are often short-term oriented, they sometimes expect big results from very small investments. To encourage a client towards longer-term strategies, ask your client if your services are showing progress overall. It's up to you to prove to your client that you are making a difference.
Creative Ways of Attracting Clients!
While writing letters, introducing your company, creating press releases, developing a web site and of course networking are all critical to the success of any business, in a competitive market such as the Internet, the challenge grows even greater.
What that means to the consultant is that he or she must conceive of unique measures for opening doors to their services, and that demands different approaches. As an example, if you're a web designer, convincing your client of the importance of having a web site is critical in today's market. Yet, often when approaching a prospective client, getting past the initial inquiry presents a great challenge. Not wishing to lose a client right off the bat, tell the client that their decision to use your services will depend upon what they actually want to achieve. Suggest that you have some great ideas that will enhance their business. Offer a first no obligation meeting or conversation to give them an idea of what you can do for them. Usually under those terms the client will agree to speak to you about your intentions giving you an opportunity to demonstrate how you can help them.
Relating to and Understanding a Clients Needs!
Because a consultant commonly seeks to offer newer and more progressive ideas to an organization, the consultant's challenge is to relate to and understand different client's needs. Prospects often have a difficult time grasping the full benefits of a particular strategy. As an example, if you're interested in introducing new software, the potential client may not understand how implementing the newer idea can help augment their business. Although clients might not have a handle on the importance of adding something technical to their business, carefully researching different markets and showing proof as to why your idea will be to the client's benefit is one way of overcoming this challenge.
There are always going to be times when a potential or existing client may challenge your suggestions or method of operation, but you have to hear and understand where a client is coming from even when you don't agree. First listen and then show why you believe your way is best. As a consultant it is your goal to become known as a solution finder, and the only way to do that is to become aware of your client's concerns. It's your job to go beyond those concerns by helping your client reach their goals. As Consultants we always have the choice to either permit our challenges to defeat us or simply use them as an opportunity to transcend specific hurdles.
Charlene Rashkow brings 15 years of experience as a Writing Stylist and Author to her creative efforts as a freelance writer/consultant. She has successfully helped companies and individuals reach their objectives by writing outstanding website content, press releases, bios, articles of interest, business plans, resumes, and all other forms of personal and professional material. You may contact Charlene at http://www.allyourwritingneeds.com
Mobile Pressure Washing and Cleaning Scheduling
If you own a mobile car washing, pressure washing or auto detailing business you know that when your crews and machines are parked and working that you are making money. You also know that when those units and crews are driving or stuck in traffic you are losing your shirt in costs and inefficiencies. If you are to expand your mobile washing business to multiple units running in multiple cities you will need to have a strict scheduling policy and operations manual to insure that efficiencies are maintained. Today with the highest fuel costs ever in our nation's history and the increased traffic over the last five years it is ultra critical that you plot out your routes, customer locations and time with precision.
How Mastering 5 Essential Money Making Ideas Can Lead Your Business to Longterm Cashflow
Essentially there are 5 tremendously powerful methods to make money online. These methods were not always available but have only become available due to the large amount of internet commerce being conducted each and every day online. While it is possible to make money, and lots of it, using other methods, these are in my opinion the best for 3 reasons. First, they are some of the cheapest methods around. Imagine running a business for an entire year where your total cost was less than $1 a day. Secondly, these methods are fast to implement. Some of the methods can have you up and running in hours, if not only a day or two. Lastly, these ideas are simple. When it comes to working online, simpler is better and complex is dead.
Never Burn a Bridge
Why should you always maintain a good report with a business even when you are parting ways?
Employee Relations Manual Sample Outline
Most smart entrepreneurs and all large corporations have Employee Relations Manuals. Nearly all businesses with over five or more employees have some sort of employee manuals but not all have Employee Relations Manuals for their managers. It is important in today's litigious lawyer trap to have a good policy in place to protect you from a bad decision or improper handling of an employee situation by a manager. All too often a minor incident can lead to a problematic situation and end up in court, union arbitration or a hefty fine from a government regulatory agency which often tend to side with the employee, regardless of fact.
Mobile Car Wash Market Opportunities in California
The current lack of industry leaders represents an exceptional opportunity for a large and organized mobile car wash company to achieve regional domination and eventually dominate the Southern California carwash market. The best place to start a regional assault on this market would be to concentrate North and West of Los Angeles; Chatsworth and Simi Valley to Malibu and Tarzana to Santa Barbara. Once these relatively competition free markets are won Los Angeles, San Diego, Riverside and San Bernardino counties could be dominated by a steady city-by-city methodology. From there the company should include neighboring regions and Sun Belt States. By setting up each territory next to an existing territory, they will, brick by brick, build an impenetrable wall to ward off would-be competitors. Utilizing their satellite offices, they can build that wall rapidly by connecting each area. As this occurs, we will have achieved regional and eventually national name recognition and proceed to other long-term goals.
Computer Related Habits From Small Business Owner - Be Prepared, Avoid Despair
Aside from the fear of losing a spreadsheet or research project prepared for a client, what prompted me to write this article was the realization that it takes nothing short of persistent follow up to stay ahead of computer threats which could ruin my business. I also accepted the fact that keeping my computer free of viruses and spam is paramount to ensuring my computer is not going to harm others.
How to Successfully Avoid Becoming One of The 80% of Small Businesses That Will FAIL
It's a commonly quoted statistic: 80% of all small businesses will fail within the first five years of running. In fact, in Internet marketing, this figure can be as high as 95%. Yes, it's a commonly quoted statistic but for some reason, people are not very good at saying exactly why this happens. And it happens to what seems like nearly all newborn businesses.
Small Business Success: Thriving During Change (And Landing On Your Feet!)
If I had $1.00 every time I heard someone say " I don't like change or, change makes me uncomfortable" I'd be a millionaire. Some people thrive on change ? they love it and even create more of it. Others view change with anxiety and resistance. So often, we don't associate potential, excitement and wonder with change. Instead, we react to it; we try to control it; we create situations and problems to avoid dealing with it. We experience change daily in many forms ? the clothes we wear, the food we eat, the conversations we have, traffic patterns, the WEATHER.
Dispute Resolution; Competing With Other Franchisees
If you are in a franchise and have a territory dispute with another franchisee you need to prevent a lawsuit use dispute resolution techniques to resolve the dispute. Competing with other franchisees is a subject that franchisors would prefer not to need to talk about. This is a real problem for some types of franchises. For instance mobile service businesses and home based franchises.
5 Small Business Management Questions to Help Choose Marketing Programs
As small business managers, we juggle limited resources in a quest for success. To an extent, when we focus on success in one area we forego attention elsewhere. Limited money and time mean we must choose from seemingly endless -- and often conflicting -- advice and recommendations from marketing service providers; management and marketing consultants; and internal experts. This creates a dilemma. How do you choose which recommendations to embrace and which to pass by?
How To Start a Small Business
Not sure how to start a small business? This guide will offer you some useful tips on the basic requirements of starting a small business.
FTC Report on Franchise Rule Making; What Purpose?
The Federal Trade Commission out of the blue decide in November of 2004 that they wanted to revamp the franchise and business opportunity rule; specifically addressing franchising. Now then, why now? To prove to the masses that the Federal Trade Commission is in control? After all it is nearly 10 years after the Federal Trade Commission considered revising the rule, before this report has surfaced again. Ten years?
Don?t Quit Before You Get to the City!
We were more than excited. Our women's doubles tennis team had won our division, successfully competed in three rounds of the playoffs and had emerged as finalists in the city competition. We fought hard and the results had paid off, but things didn't always look so promising. Just last season we finished in 3rd place. Three of our members decided to throw in the towel and left to find new teams.
Do You Need the Help of a Virtual Assistant?
Running a business, whether large, small or in your home, is full of challenges. Getting the day-to-day tasks completed, e-mail, faxes and telephones answered, bills and statements sent out, reports run, schedule updated, travel arrangements made, marketing pieces and website updated, as well as a plethora of other tasks, can be downright daunting.
The Game Plan ? The Difference Between Small Business Success And Failure
It is an American dream to own a business. But sadly, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce, only 1 in 5 businesses is still in business 5 years after it opens.
Small Businesses - Big Obstacles
Everyone is talking about small businesses. In 1993, when it was allowed, more than 90,000 new firms were registered by individuals. Now, less than three years later, official figures show that only 40,000 of them still pay their dues and present annual financial statements. These firms are called "active" - but this is a misrepresentation. Only a very small fraction really does business and produces income.
Two Types Of Business Plan Cover Pages ? Which One Are You Using?
This is the tale of two business plans with very different cover pages. They both contain a unique and exciting business opportunity with the potential for high investment returns. Arriving in the morning mail, each neatly bound plan lands on the desk of the same potential business investor. Both plans are competing with hundreds of other documents, worksheets, phone calls, and articles for the investor's attention. And, they compete in time, because each one, seen for a few seconds, is either heeded or passed up and seldom returned to by the investor.
Small Business Success - It?s a Matter of Confidence
I was floored! I couldn't believe what they were saying! But there they sat -- three of the biggest film stars of our age -- telling the world they had issues with confidence. I was watching an interview where Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman and Julianne Moore were talking with Oprah Winfrey. Their conversation gave me a lot to think about in regard to small business success.
Franchise Rule to be Revised; Why?
The FTC, Federal Trade Commission, is considering modifying the franchise rule. So far it has be a ten-year process; just imagine working that slow in your business? In 1995, 1997 and 1999 when the comments were first considered and taken in, which spans a ten-year period. When you combine those comments with this current rule making period they may have broken the record for the longest rule making session since voting on the slavery issue; one heck of a long rule making period by any means.
Small Business - Is The Accounting Profession Ripping Them Off?
My 16 year-old daughter said, "Gee Dad! You look just like an accountant" And she wasn't being complimentary. Accountants are perceived to be boring, stodgy and conservative. Over the years we've been the butt of many jokes. I've heard them all. Why did the accountant cross the road? Because he looked up the file and that's what they did last year! Ha Ha! What do accountants use as a contraceptive? Their personality! Ha Ha!" Why do accountants become accountants? They don't have the charisma to be undertakers! Ha Ha! What do they call an accountant at the bottom of the sea? A bloody good start! Ha Ha! I think I am the exception. That's why I've begun to call myself a business strategist and counselor. "You're still an accountant," says teenage daughter. I am still an accountant and I'm still as passionate about it as the day I started. Because accountants have an impact on people's lives. The advice we give changes people's businesses which in turn changes their lives. I'm excited in my role of accountant. Accounting is not stodgy. Accounting is exciting. Accounting is cool! My ambition is to become the "cool dude of accounting". (do they still say "dude", do they still say "cool". Remember that song: When I say, "cool, man, cool, I don't mean cool, man, cool, I mean you leave me cold, Jack") We were throwing some ideas around with some of our clients as we do from time to time, looking for that unique benefit that our firm gives to our clients. That unique something that distinguishes us from other accounting practices. One said, "You have helped me to improve my business. Not only am I making more profits and have more to spend, but I also have more time to spend away from the business. The more time I spend at home with my family the happier my life is. And the happier I am the happier my wife and children seem to be. When my wife is happy all sorts of good things happen ? even our sex life improves. That's it! You can advertise that using Kelvyn Peters CPA and Associates improves your sex life" I don't think so! Sorry, we haven't accepted his idea. You're completely on your own in that department, but we can help you improve your business and consequently your life. And your goal might not be extra profit but extra time for living! We know we can because we are doing it for others. We repeat ourselves so often because the truth is the truth and there is only a limited number of ways to tell it. You've heard this before. If you are spending every waking moment in a hassle about your business, there must be a better way. There is! Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years In 1973 I attended a workshop for accountants at the Finance Management Research Center then headed by Dr Keith Cleland. The workshop was intended to drag participants into the 20th century. "Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years", he told us. The 25 participants were shocked. These represented vibrant accounting firms from all around Australia, both large firms and small. They were at the cutting edge of the industry. Otherwise they would not have been at this kind of workshop. To a person they resented that comment and one fellow wanted to punch him on the nose. (It wasn't me, but I would have held his coat). By the week's end we discovered how we were charging high fees for things that our clients couldn't understand, couldn't use and didn't need. At the same time we were neglecting the information that they did need to increase their profits and safeguard their businesses. 20 Years Later what's Changed? I attended a week long seminar hosted by CPA Australia in 1993 which was to train us in "client based accounting". Dr Cleland presented the initial module. He did not openly criticize accountants this time, after all, it was the CPA's hosting it, but he gave almost the same speech (same jokes, too) as he had 20 years before. "These things aren't taught in Universities", he said, "so the accounting profession has mostly ignored them. They have let small business down but things are changing". Know-it-all, Kelvyn Peters had to jump to his feet and say that the doctor had said exactly the same thing 20 years ago. Where were the signs of change? Universities were still not teaching accountants how to help their clients. "This seminar with CPA Australia and the suggestion they might make client based accounting a speciality is a good sign", he replied. 10 Years Later? Nothing has changed. Our hopes have withered on the vine and small business must look elsewhere for help. Recently I was called in to assist an ailing restaurant. We were happy to work with their existing accountant. We'd rather do the fun stuff and let the accountant do the boring tax returns and compliance work. In this case the client insisted we take over the whole of the accounting function. The accountant was most unhappy. "They are difficult clients", he said, "I have kept the fee lower than it should be and I have done extra to help them". Indeed, he had! The financial statements were beautiful to behold with colored graphs and key ratios compared against industry average. (most accountants still don't do that. I had advised that both wages costs and cost of foodstuffs were too high. Our focus was to form tactics to reduce them. "But I had already told them that", said the Accountant, "what do they need you for?' I told him that the client knew the kitchen wages were too high and what he wanted was for someone to show them how to reduce the wages in the kitchen. "I can't do that", he said, "I'm an accountant". I would have to camp down there in the restaurant to see what's going on. And they wouldn't pay the fee". Yes they would. They were going to pay me. Most accountants see their role as being the provider of financial statements, cash-flow projections and tax returns, and there's the rub. Each of these is a tool not an end in itself. It's like giving the client a hammer and saw and telling him to go build a house. He needs more than the tools, he needs to be shown how to use them. Of course the client will complain about fees whatever the level if all he receives are not useful to him. Accountants generally are flat out preparing financial statements and tax returns. Meeting dead-lines. They haven't the time to 'smell the roses'. Anything that doesn't help meet a dead-line has to wait until later. Often its too late. I may still look like an accountant, even the cool dude of accounting, but there is nothing I like more than talking with a business owner about his business. There's nothing a business owner likes more than discussing his business and planning to make more money. It's great fun and he loves to pay me for it.
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