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Small businesses still have a lot of catching up do with regards to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). With just under a month left until the new legislation goes into effect, the small business community is hoping that the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) will be lenient. Small businesses have struggled with GDPR from the beginning because of the lack of resources that are easily attainable for bigger businesses.
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Some people are comfortable with the routine and regular income that comes from being an employee. If being an employee suits you then that’s great. However, for some people being an employee can feel like an inescapable trap. If you start feeling like that then you should consider starting your own business. You will need certain skills to thrive as a business owner, but most importantly you need to be a leader and be focused in order to be a good entrepreneur.

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What is the difference between a good public speaker and a great one? What makes people want to know more about one person, and tune another one out? Although content, of course, has a lot to do with who listens to whom, something else that can make someone particularly successful at public speaking is confidence. Without it, talks can be impersonal, boring, flat, and uninspired, and all because the person giving the talk has no confidence in themselves, and what they are saying. To be a powerful public speaker, confidence is key.

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In our latest success story, we discuss the success of Stem + Glory, a vegan restaurant, with the owner Louise Palmer-Masterton. Louise, a yoga instructor turned entrepreneur gives us an insight into her business journey, from discussing future plans to the rise of veganism.

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The gender pay gap has been in the spotlight recently, with the government actually taking action to start tackling the issue. Companies with the more than 250 employees have to report on how much they are paying their staff. Although this only focused on bigger businesses, small business should also start looking at the gender pay gap at their firm. A positive finding was that UK Fast, a hosting firm, had the mean gender pay gap which was just 0.9%.

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If you work remotely at home, you will be totally reliant on your broadband connection, so it’s important to make sure that you can always stay connected. Remote and mobile working has become part of modern working life. We all expect to able to work on the move and wherever we might find ourselves. That means staying connected at home and while we travel.

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If you are thinking of starting a business and don’t have huge investment funds then there are still plenty of start up business ideas for you to consider. There are certain elements that come into play when starting a small business that could reduce the costs of starting up significantly. From working at home to needing minimal equipment, it doesn’t have to cost large sums of money to get started.

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Jordan Daykin is the latest entrepreneur to feature in our success stories. Jordan is the inventor and owner of GripIt, a plasterboard fixing capable of holding 250kg, as well as the CEO of VPS Group. He invented GripIt with his Grandad at just 13 years of age. He discusses his time on Dragons Den, inventing his product and his plans for the future.
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Following on from our previous article on ‘How to attract the millennials‘, it’s interesting to examine this age cohort’s spending attitudes and behaviours by comparing them to those of other generations; Baby Boomers and Generation X.

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When you are focusing your efforts on developing a fast growth company from the ground up it can be easy to put great customer service on the back burner. With things like fundraising, partnerships, product launches and finances all demanding attention, it can be a challenge to prioritise customer service.

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Alex Eid the founder of Homie, a platform to help renters find a home with a help of a personal home finder, is the latest entrepreneur to be featured in our success story. Alex has raised $4 million in seed funding to set up and grow his business. In his story, he discusses workplace culture and advice for any prospective, aspiring entrepreneurs.
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If you’re raising money for your business, don’t ignore the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS). These offer new and growing young businesses in the UK attractive vehicles for securing inward investment. They benefit both the investor and recipient – and they are backed by the Government.

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Financial markets can be a fickle beast. The success or otherwise of a company, sector, country or region relies a lot on confidence – a factor that is hard to win, tough to maintain and easy to lose. Many factors contribute to a feeling of confidence but one factor that you shouldn’t lose sight of – especially as an international business – is the impact that political events can have on the economy.

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It’s important to be aware of all the 2019 tax dates and deadlines, especially those that will effect your small business. Some of the tax deadlines such as the self-assessment and VAT tax return take considerable amount of preparation and time beforehand. So make sure you take note of all the dates that are relevant to you and your small business in order to get prepared.
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When running a small business, saving money and cutting costs where you can should always be a priority. By being smart when dealing with taxes it can actually save you a considerable amount of money. If you are efficiently dealing with your taxes, it could be the difference between a steady profitable business to one that’s just barely getting by.
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Here are the main tax rates and allowances for 2018/19 that are most relevant to small businesses.
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Boosting productivity in the workplace is a major goal for most business owners. Fortunately, there are many handy tools on the market to help you do just that. What’s more, lots of them are free or are available in free versions.

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Managing staff holidays can be challenging, especially for small businesses as the teams are smaller and arranging cover can be difficult. All workers are entitled to paid annual leave, therefore you will need to be prepared to have staff off from work for four to six weeks per year. Successfully managing staff holidays helps to create a happier team, boosting the productivity of the business.

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Over the past decade office desks have changed massively, no longer do we see the dominance of calculators, notepads, writing equipment and instruments we used to update company accounts – our desks are now clutter-free and the computer has taken over. All of our trusted aids and devices can now be accessed through our PC, tablet or even our mobile phones. Most businesses have welcomed these changes, as with them they have brought dramatic increases in efficiencies and improvements in the way we work. Yet, one out-of-date accounting tool that many companies still hang on to is the “trusted” spreadsheet.

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Emotions can play a vital role in business. From emotional intelligence increasingly becoming a requirement for business leaders to emotional TV adverts. To connect with customers and make a lasting impression, small business owners need to consider using emotions in marketing campaigns.  A great example of this is the release of John Lewis Christmas adverts, which is now a national event in the UK. This is because they create content that tugs on the heartstrings of the audience.
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