Over the last ten years I have seen a number of recurring themes that affect how much work gets done during the working day. This short article looks at the three of the seven common problems I witness on a regular basis. The other four common problems are covered in a separate article (Part II). Each section includes several steps that you can try and test so that you can avoid the same pitfalls.

If you’re preparing to grow your North East based business, find out how funding can help and the key steps to get the funding you need.

Businesses are often caught out by threats of economic uncertainty or even outright recession and it is then that they are most likely to embark on a series of drastic cost-cutting measures. Cost control is not a matter of expediency, driven by external events, rather, it should be cultural; a way of operating in good times and bad.

The question is 'how do you ensure that your approach to cost control is thoroughly rooted in the way you do business?'

One of the biggest problems I see with small service-based business providers, particularly those whose owner is the sole provider of the service, is how to ensure consistent cash flow. So that you don't experience the peaks and troughs of cash coming in whilst delivering your service, then cash stopping when service delivery ends.

Debt is one of the realities of business. Even if your customers pay within the allocated terms, it's your business that is carrying the risk. Many businesses avoid thinking about debt until they are in a position where they are faced with a potentially ruinous situation of a large debt and insufficient capital to keep the business operational.

Most businesses require funding from external providers if they are to achieve the expansion the stakeholders and directors envisage. Within the northeast there are more than 60 sources for external funding. Across the UK and internationally, a lot more.

Generally there are two occasions when a Business Plan will be produced for a trading business - we're going to look at the reasons and what you should be including in your plan.

Raising funding for a startup is hard. There's no question about it: raising capital from angel investors or venture capitalists is a huge hurdle for almost every startup out there.

Every business should have a cash flow forecast so that it can project the amount of money coming into the business (inflow) and the amount of money leaving the business (outflow). Your cash flow will help you to identify peaks and troughs in your finances. Used effectively it is a valuable tool for your business. A cash flow forecast usually covers a 12 month period for smaller businesses, larger businesses may need to produce one for three or even five years.

Providers

Register your business as an NBSL provider and stay up to date with the latest funding information.

If you provide business support services like marketing, business planning, human resources or financial planning find out how you could register with us to offer a grant of up to £3200 to your clients for work that you do for them.

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Our Programmes

From start up to growth.

Our unique support programmes can provide help no matter what stage your business is at.