Sole Trader V Limited Company Considerations

So you have a new business idea and have sketched a brief business plan. What are your options in terms of structure and how do you decide which one is right for you? There are two main options open to entrepreneurs setting up in Ireland – sole trader or limited company. I will briefly outline the differences between the two and the issues you need to consider when making a decision on which structure to choose. Sole Trader Sole trader is the simplest option. To set up as a sole trader, you will need to register […]

EMPLOYEES ANNUAL TAX FREE €500 BONUS

Employers can reward employees under the Small Benefits Exemption Scheme with a non-cash bonus of up to €500 completely tax free this year 2017. If guidelines are followed neither the company nor the employee will pay PAYE, PRSI or USC with a potential saving of over €650. To qualify for the tax exemption, only one tax-free bonus may be paid to each employee in any one year. If more than one bonus is given in a year, it is only the first one that will qualify for tax-free status, even if this bonus is less than […]

20 Great Actionable Time Saving Ideas

Andy Bounds, author of The Jelly Effect: How to Make Your Communications Stick, recently passed me on some great time saving ideas. As he says the most common grumble in business: “I don’t have time.” So he has twenty ways to change how you communicate, to free-up loads of time. All are easy. All will save you time. But which will you do? Don’t have 30- or 60-minute meetings.  Instead, make them a maximum of 20 or 45. Even shorter, whenever possible Review last week’s diary, and identify all the things that took longer than they […]

Slow Down and Stop Making Mistakes

5 SME mistakes

Over the years I have found if I rush my work I am prone to making silly mistakes. So I slow down and review what I have done to make sure it looks right. A quick test for you: You have just five seconds to answer these simple questions: What do cows drink? What’s the opposite of ‘not in’? How much dirt is in a hole measuring two metres squared, and three metres deep? What weighs more – a ton of concrete or a ton of feathers? How many of each animal did Moses take onto […]

Flowering Shares

Flowering shares are a class of ordinary shares issued by a company which entitle the shareholder (employee in this case) to capital generated by the future growth of the business above its current value. Shares are issued at a day one value. When a company reaches an agreed level of future growth (which is known as the “hurdle”) the shares will have an agreed value. This amount can be either variable (based on a percentage) or a fixed amount. The shares are normally available for purchase at a nominal or small amount meaning only minimal outlay […]

3 Things You Need To Think About If You’re Buying A Business

One way to achieve growth for your business is to buy another business. Or perhaps you’re thinking of starting up a business and buying an existing business seems like a better option than starting from scratch. A big mistake that many in this position make is to look for opportunities at the lowest price. But price is only one of a number of factors that must be carefully considered. Failing to consider all these factors is likely to make it much more difficult for you to be successful in your purchase. Here are 3 such factors […]

Is Pricing Low A Good Idea?

Especially when starting up a business the perceived wisdom can be that you should price low. If you price low you can win more customers. More customers mean more sales and that’s the key to success……or is it? The tendency is to think I’m new, I’m small, I can do it cheaper. But in fact there are four problems with this thinking. One of the most common mistakes made by business owners is to underestimate their costs. Small businesses generally don’t have the right attributes to be able to get significant cost reductions in comparison with […]

The Keys To Understanding Your Balance Sheet

Right from when you get your first set of management or annual accounts you’ll probably notice that one of the reports is a balance sheet. Especially for new business owners you might wonder what exactly it is and what it has to do with balancing. The balance sheet is a vital financial document for your business so learning what it means and how you can read it can make a big difference. What is a balance sheet? A balance sheet tells you something about the financial strength of a business on a particular day – usually […]

4 Tried and Tested Ways To Ensure You Get Your Pricing Right

There’s no doubt that applying the right pricing to your business can help you make more profit. In fact, McKinsey, the global consulting firm, suggest that pricing has a bigger impact on a company’s profit than anything else. How can you make sure you’re making the right pricing decisions that make you the most profit? Read on to gain insight into pricing anchors and then 4 tried and tested ways for you to successfully apply them to your business. Pricing Anchors… Anchoring is profoundly important to pricing for profit. Here’s why… A product is never really […]

Using Guarantees Wins Sales

A concern that most of your prospective buyers will have is: What if this isn’t right for me? What if I change my mind? What if I don’t like it or I don’t want it? If you can eliminate this concern and reassure your buyer you’re more likely to be able to convert the sale. Eliminate those concerns by using a guarantee This reassures the customer that buying the item isn’t the end. Their interests will still be protected post-sale. You could think about having a guarantee along the lines of: “If you’re not completely satisfied […]

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