Has the Computer Decluttered Your Desk?

decluttered desk

“A tidy desk is a sign of a tidy mind” or at least so I have heard!

The computer manufacturers and software producers claimed that we would end up in a paperless society. Whilst that is not quite here yet there certainly has been a huge reduction in paper usage. From newspapers to postal mail paper use has dramatically gone down. But what about in the office?

In some office environments, we can say that paper usage has dramatically decreased or almost eliminated. For others, it seems that there is a 2 system method in operation. Documents are used in paper form then often duplicated or scanned later onto computer storage often creating more work than if paper only were used.

What does your desk look like? Are there files piled up like you might expect to see in a 1950’s office? Maybe your desk looks like the one in the photo above, in which case I say, “Congratulations!”

This has given me an idea for a Twitter feature. Take a photo of your desk, either tidy or untidy and share it with my Twitter account @ProfitsrGood. There are no prizes but it will be fun! Please make sure that no confidential details are shown in the photo.


What Business Can I Start?

What Business Can I Start?

What business can I startMany people dream of starting their own business and clearly know what they would like to do. These are people that have a passion for something, love doing it and want to control their own lives. They will never ask the question “What business can I start?”

It could be argued that if you have to ask this question you really shouldn’t be thinking of starting a business! However there are times when I can see that people will ask that question. Sadly many find themselves unemployed or have the threat of redundancy facing them. Finding a new job is not easy especially if you are one of the older generation that employers tend to avoid. For those who want to work but keep getting rejected or can only get low paid work, starting their own business can be a good thing to do.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I am unemployed – what business can I start?

For those in this situation asking the question ”What business can I start?” should be part of their strategy to earn a living. Here are some tips that will help people arrive at the answer to their question.

The first thing that I would consider is, “can the job that you have been doing be turned into a business?” It is easy to see that an out of work tradesperson could use the same skills in their own business. For others though it is not so easy. If for example you have spent years as a receptionist, administrator or shop assistant then doing the same thing as a business is unlikely.

In such cases you need to list the skills you have and see what can be transferred into a business. You must also be prepared for a complete change and to learn new skills. I know many people that have set up businesses as window cleaners and some as home maintenance persons doing those little jobs that others don’t want or charge a fortune to do. They perhaps had some skills already and topped up by learning new ones along the way. Someone for example who was very good at DIY could use those skills in a home maintenance business. There are some people that get a lot or work assembling flat pack furniture for those that just can’t do it.

There are many hobbies can be turned into businesses as long as there is a market for them. If you have a lot of knowledge about antiques, stamp collecting, can make craft items, repair clocks etc, these are all things that can be turned into a business.

Whatever business you are considering starting make sure that you do your market research and establish that you can succeed. If there is not going to be enough demand or if you can’t charge enough for your service there is no point in starting that business.

What business can I start – should I do what I love?

You might have heard entrepreneurs say “do what you love”. It’s true that if you love doing something then you will enjoy it and it makes running a business involving that love a pleasurable thing to do. Your customers will also recognize your love and enthusiasm for your work which will help in you succeeding.

There are many opportunities for everyone and starting a business is the easy part. The difficulty is finding customers and growing that business so that it can provide you with sufficient income.

There are lots of posts here that will help you in your business so use the search facility to find them so that you can answer the question “What business can I start?”

If you would like to discuss the question “What business can I start?” please leave a comment in the box below.


6 Common Errors That Cause Small Businesses to Fail

Why Small Businesses Fail

Small businesses often fail in their first year or two. Why is that? In this post I want to cover 6 common reasons why small businesses fail and by taking a look at these hopefully many people will avoid failure. With a very difficult economic situation it is vital that business owners minimize the the situations that could cause them to fail. These errors listed below although numbered should not be viewed in any order of importance.

Roland Millward is an expert in starting and helping small businesses
Author: Roland Millward

6 Common Errors why small businesses fail

Number 1 – Lack of Commitment

Many people start a business and are sometimes unaware of how much effort and commitment will be required to make it successful. An employed person usually only sees a small part of what goes on in a business even if they are a key player in the company. This can give a false impression of what it takes to run a successful business.

Number 2 – Avoid Negativity

You certainly need to choose carefully the people that surround you. If they are negative about your business it can soon start to effect you and make you question yourself, your abilities, the economy and a whole lot of other things that can make you negative and start to make decisions that adversely affect your business.

Number 3 – Trying to Do Everything Yourself

Larger businesses have teams of people that take care of everything from marketing, accounts, buying, stock control, personnel management and much more. If you are working on your own you must realise that you can not be an expert in everything and whilst you may not be able to afford to employ full or part time staff you should look to find help on an hourly ad-hoc contract basis when you need it. There is lots of help out there at modest cost.

Number 4 – Be Careful of Shortcuts

It is often too easy to look for shortcuts when you have your own business due to a lack of time. Shortcuts in themselves are not always wrong but if for instance you take shortcuts and take a “that’ll do” attitude you could end up in trouble. As an example, for the sake of a little more time you might be able to improve an advert that you are making. A poor advert could cost you lots of money with little return whereas a good one could boost sales enormously.

Number 5 – Avoid Desperation

Many businesses go through a famine period and when you are looking for new customers you must not sound too desperate for their business and “push” them too far. You are more likely to lose sales when you are desperately in need of them due to trying too hard. This is often a common problem that small businesses face.

Number 6 – Get Your Pricing Right

Many small businesses fail because they fail to get their pricing right. In some sectors they can not compete with the larger companies and will be too expensive. In others they try to be much cheaper than the competition thinking that this will help them get more business.

Far too often small businesses fail because they price too low. Low prices can actually put people off as they may think your quality might be inferior to that of others. It is also possible to put turnover ahead of profit. Always remember the saying, “Turnover is Vanity – Profit is Sanity”. There has never been a truer saying for many small businesses. It is far too easy for people to say how much their turnover is but they often don’t know what their profit is. You could be turning over huge amounts of money but be on the road to going bankrupt.

Small Businesses Can Be Successful

The good news is that many small businesses are successful. It takes hard work and commitment along with a “never say die” positive attitude. Make sure that if you have a small business or are going to start one that you get these basic principles right from the start. You can then join the millions around the world that successfully own small businesses.