5 Point Checklist For Starting Your New Business

Starting a business is an adventure; the chance to build something that’s yours, that reflects your passion and hard work and enables you to do the things you love most. However, it can also be fraught with challenges, particularly in the early months so, as with all things, it’s best to be ultra-prepared before you kick off.

1.    Write a plan

I get it. Writing a business plan is not much fun.

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How To Bring In Clients You Really Want To Work With

When we start a business, we will take any clients we can get our hands on. Sometimes they don’t even fit our product/service brief – we just want the income. And that’s understandable.

The problem is that working like this over a long period of time sets us up with the wrong mindset. It means that we will often end up continuously working with clients who don’t pay our desired rate (often we discount to get them), can be time consuming, and leave us feeling stuck with our ‘lot’.

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What To Do If A Client Goes Bust

The news this year has been dominated by a range of UK businesses announcing profit warnings, and even going into administration, including construction firm Carillion, restaurant chains Jamies and Prezzo, and retailers New Look and House of Fraser, amongst others. 

Much has, rightly, been made of the employees whose immediate futures are now in the balance, unsure of what will happen next. 

However, there's also a significant group of people whose plight hasn't made the headlines - the contractors and suppliers further down the chain whose businesses may well also go bust with a raft of unpaid invoices. The impact and ripple effect is likely to be monumental.

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3 Top Tips To Rejuvenate Your Creativity

Has your creativity gone missing? Do you know you need to change things up but you just can't get the new ideas flowing?

My top three tips for rejuvenating your creative juices may just be the tonic you need.

1. Turn Your Thinking On Its Head. The most creative and innovative people see problems, and the world they inhabit, in a very different way to the majority of us. (contd)…

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Ali Golds
29 Rules To Live By

I picked up quite probably one of the best business books I've ever read , this week. 

The book? Tools of Titans, by Tim Ferriss.

It's a simple concept. Over the years, Tim has interviewed a whole raft of entrepreneurs, successful athletes, and deep thinkers for his podcast, so he took the transcripts, asked a few more questions, and *ta-dah* produced this book.

I absolutely loved it. It spoke to me on so many levels - as an entrepreneur, as an innovator, and a creator. It reminded me of things I used to do, still do, and it also opened up a whole world of new things to try.

And this, without doubt, was my favourite find of all:

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5 Reasons To Be Authentic In Business

I am an incredibly honest person. I was brought up in a family that lied as easily as you might take a breath, so I made a conscious decision when I was very young that I would be the opposite. I would be honest to a fault.

Since making that earnest promise to myself, I've come to realise that honesty - authenticity - isn't always valued. I've learned to temper my honesty with a cushion of kindness here and there, sometimes people don't want to hear the truth so it's better to say nothing than to lie but mostly, I like to think, people want to know where they stand and what their options might be.

As much as I like to tell the truth, I also appreciate hearing it. There have been notable occasions over the years when it's hurt a bit (OK, a lot!) but I'd much rather know than not know. It's how I've brought my sons up too, and the big pay-off has definitely been that they have told me all kinds of things that they could have kept secret, or even been too scared to share; and certainly things that my friends don't hear from their own children. 

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Accepting When It's Time To Move On (And Then Doing It).

It's a part of life, isn't it, that most things come to an end - either of our own volition, or just because they've reached the end of their use or purpose. Sometimes we're happy about it, other times we aren't. Sometimes we welcome the chance to start afresh, and sometimes we don't.

Change comes upon us all, and we need to embrace it or risk standing still (when everyone is racing past us like Olympic sprinters) - in life in general, and also in business.

I've tackled more change, and new starts, than I care to remember; and I've become a dab hand at it. To be fair, I'm also one of those people who likes to learn new things and experience new challenges, so it's not a surprise, and I don't see that changing any time soon.

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15 Ways To Find Inspiration

As an entrepreneur, and particularly as a writer, I like to be able to tap into inspiration at the drop of a hat.

Luckily, there are many things that inspire me - watching the world go by from my balcony next to the sea, spending time with my kids, listening to a piece of music or reading a book - but sometimes even my regular go-to inspiration injections don't quite cut it, and I need to really up the ante to get that hit.

So what can we do when we need a shot of inspiration but it's just not happening?

Here's my top fifteen suggestions:

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