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Grow a Small Business

Today, more and more businesses are making the commitment to sustainable and eco-friendly business practices, not just to appeal to discerning customers, but to save money in the long term, too. Big or small, businesses can’t afford to ignore the growing climate crisis and the responsibility to do their part. Fortunately, giving your business a green makeover is easier than it sounds, and a little goes a long way.

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Running an eco-friendly business or office reduces the impact on the environment and preserves natural resources. Assess your current printing environment and identify areas you can improve. Are your printers energy efficient? Do they switch to standby mode? Does your business use recycle paper, remanufactured ink cartridges, or low-melt toner? Do you have printing guidelines in place such as printing on both sides of the paper, limiting unnecessary images and adjusting margins?  

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There are several signs to suggest that as a nation we’re through the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Infection rates have fallen from the highs seen in mid-April, and London – which was one of the worst affected localities – recently saw no new coronavirus cases for a full 24-hour period.

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Many small businesses are being to plan for their reopening, or if they have been maintaining their businesses during Covid-19 perhaps they are preparing for staff to return to their workplace.

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Small business owners will be relieved that lockdown looks set to be easing. However, this isn’t a return to normal. Business needs to think of the changing situation as moving forward into a new normal and continue to deal with the reality of the coronavirus.  Handling this period will take resilience and adaptability from business owners.

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Though many areas are beginning to ease up on their shelter-at-home directives, it’s still going to take weeks if not months for in-person customer interactions to get back to normal. This is why it’s essential for businesses to pivot their communication strategies to focus on maintaining and forging virtual connections.

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According to data from Euromonitor International, 2019 was the first year that more than 50% of the world’s population was connected to the Internet. People are likely to stay connected throughout 2020 and beyond as more consumers are using the Internet for the first time because of affordable online access and mobile phones.

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Once you’ve started up a new venture, you’ll need to ensure that you have banking facilities in place before you can start trading. So, do you need to set up a small business bank account for your business, or can you use your own personal bank account?

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As communities begin to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses are looking to take the right steps in preparing for that reopening. Experts are discussing the importance of careful planning during this stage of the pandemic. Business owners will need to be informed about how to properly reopen.

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Pension auto-enrolment obligates companies to automatically enrol employees in a pension scheme unless workers decide to ‘opt-out’. As a result, all company owners should make themselves aware of pension auto-enrolment and how it will affect them when hiring employees.

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Many of us have been compelled to change the way we work and move our meetings, presentations, sales pitches etc. to an online setting. This takes some getting used to as I have found.  In the process of moving online, I have learned some valuable lessons as I have conducted meetings and coaching online. Here, Simon Day from Toastmaster International will share how small businesses can communicate with impact online.

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When starting his first business, a friend told me how he decided to use his personal bank account for all of his business transactions. This included the income he generated from his clients, along with all business expenses.

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Moving people to remote working can be stressful at the best of times. COVID-19 adds an extra dimension. For this reason, it is very important that business owners consider the impact on the mental wellbeing of their team as they adjust to the necessary changes.

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With the sudden increase of people being laid off in the UK, as well as many workers not expecting a full wage, more people than ever will be looking to supplement their income through their own efforts.

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Due to these circumstances our planet has found itself in, a lot of changes are being made in all spheres of life. Many countries are currently on lockdown in order to flatten the curve and stop COVID-19 from spreading. The measures that are being taken are various and each government is dealing with it in its own way.

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There are 7.6 million people, according to the UK Office of National Statistics, that have some form of disability — and nearly half of them are unemployed. But disabled people are just as skilled and as talented as everyone else. Finally, new research is emerging and shining a light on how making a conscious effort to hire disabled workers can boost company morale, productivity, and job satisfaction. 

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Anyone in a secure and longstanding career might feel that the prospect of volunteering is one that will have no benefits to their professional life, and they will quickly dismiss the idea. This is far from an accurate view on the matter, however. In addition to being a rewarding way of ‘giving back’ to the world around us, volunteering brings with it many other advantages that prove useful in a person’s professional and personal life. From a business perspective, volunteering schemes also have numerous benefits, from improving company image to enhancing employees’ workplace experience.

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Inefficiencies can creep into any business. If they are allowed to continue they can seriously impact profits and growth potential. Customers don’t feel they are getting good value, the company struggles to make a profit, and frustrated employees jump ship.

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In a recent study by Purbeck Insurance Services, it was found that just under half of women (46%) entrepreneurs found it difficult to switch off from work compared to the 38% of men entrepreneurs. With the International Women’s Day falling on Sunday the 8th of March this year, it is recommended female entrepreneurs take the day to celebrate and take time off to switch off.

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It costs more money for businesses to gain new customers, in comparison to retaining loyal clients. When developing a customer retention plan, you should use some of the following tips. These strategies could keep your clients engaged and coming back for more products and services.

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