We have a cash-flow problem, shall we reduce our margin to drive sales volumes?
Cash-flow management is about how money flows into and out of your business over-time. There are three types of cash flow – operational, investment, and financing – and the one of interest here is operational cash flow. Cash-flows in from sales, and out in payment of bills, including supplier invoices, wages and rents.
Margins need to be high enough to leave sufficient cash to pay all these and the timing of inflows and outflows needs to be managed to make sure enough cash is there at the right time.
By discounting margins to drive sales, you risk not having enough cash left to pay all these bills. This is a common problem with businesses at the moment, with everyone discounting like mad to try to maintain sales, resulting in insufficient cash to pay salaries and rents. People are literally buying the work to stay afloat.
Continue reading “Time to Wake Up and Smell the Tea!”
Last week one of my business partners dropped a bomb-shell.
We were chatting about a company we both know well.
I know one of the partners and he knows the other.
The guy I know is a great sales guy. He is a marketing expert and believes in networking.
From the conversations we had, and the news stories that were coming from him, it was fair to assume the business was doing really well in 2011.
My business partner knows the other partner, who is the financial director.
He told a different story, of a struggling business, backs against the wall. At one point in 2011, they came close to becoming insolvent.
Continue reading “Live the lie of success…”
It takes a lot of self-reflection and guts, and likely many sleepless nights, to decide that it’s time to shut down a struggling business.
Owning a business is a labour of love and grief. There are the highs and the lows. As well as a huge amount of work it takes to get things off the ground.
Thinking back I did not want to let the business go, more out of fear for the unknown than anything else; but the pressure started to mount up and the problems we had accumulated over the last two years became untenable. We were having a really hard time paying off past debt, while trying to buy new stock and keep up with rent and everything else. Continue reading “Thinking Beyond – The Outside of the Box”
101 Tips for Small Business
It’s quite easy for small business owners to become distracted by their day-to-day responsibilities. But in this competitive economy you can’t afford to miss out on the newest business innovations.
That’s why we asked 50 of the top small business bloggers to share their best tips for small business owners. Their response was incredible. While some shared nuggets of wisdom, others gave us actionable tips you can use right away. Here’s your crib sheet to the best business advice the blogosphere has to offer.
On the Small Business Advantage
1. “Respond. This is the single biggest advantage you have over the big guys. Not only are you in charge, you also answer the phone and read your email and man the desk and set the prices. So, don’t pretend you have a policy. Just be human.”
— Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog
Continue reading “Tip It Up for Success (not literally!)”
Over the last 3 years I have worked with many different types of people helping them to get their business back on track. There are many opportunities out there for cash rich investors so choosing the right deal is crucial.
The opportunity cost of working with a business owner who doesn’t share common values can result in lost time and money. I do not charge upfront fees, my remuneration comes in the success of the business being turned around from an insolvent liability to a saleable business.
It’s very much people first and business model and margin second, here is a summary of tips for a successful turnaround. Continue reading “Get in the Flow…”