Introducing Smart Guides and Downloads

We’ve put together a range of blogs, tools and resources to help take your business forward – read up on creating business plans, how to motivate your team and much more.

Small Business Owner's Guide to Supply Chain Management

As a small business owner, improving your supply chain may involve something as simple as reviewing where and how you store your inventory, or it could mean a much bigger exercise, involving ongoing reviews of production logistics. Anything you can do to improve a supply chain should help to minimise your costs and, hopefully, increase your profit margins and financial position too.

How to handle customer complaints in a small business

How do you handle customer complaints? How can you stop complaints from ruining your reputation? Life isn’t perfect and most small businesses can have a temporary or minor setback from time to time. It may be product defects, slow post, poor service, or even a misunderstanding that makes the phone ring. What is important, though, is having a plan to handle customer complaints in advance, when dealing with issues around product defects, service or delivery.

How to create a vision statement for your small business

What is a vision statement, and how can it help your business? How does a vision differ from a mission statement? A well-written vision statement should describe what your business wants to achieve in the future. It should be ambitious. It should also motivate your team and your customers. In this guide, we’ll explain how to create a meaningful vision statement in five simple steps.

How to write a business plan for a small business

What does a good business plan look like? Do you have to write a detailed business plan or could a short version do instead? A good business plan is a roadmap that helps people see where you’d like to take your business. This guide explains what to put into a business plan if you’re a small business looking for investment or funding.

Creating a cash flow forecast for your small business

A good cash flow forecast is a valuable tool. But how do you plan ahead if you’re just starting out? And how do you create a cash flow forecast that’s useful? Here, we’ll explain how to create a cash flow forecast that can help take the pressure off your small business in the short term, and make it easier to grow in the long term.

How to value your business - A guide for small businesses

You’ve poured endless energy into your business. Now, how do you put a value on what you’ve done? What is your business worth? Which methods could you use to value your business and which would you prefer? This guide can help you to put a valuation on your business that’s credible and reflective of all your hard work.

Doing effective market research for small business

What is market research? Can it really shape the way you run a small business? How big an impact could it have on your company’s profit margins? As a small business owner, it’s easy to be excited and ignore the facts and figures. But to be a success, you have to find out what your market wants. This guide will explain why market research is so important for small businesses, and where to find some freely-available resources.

How to conduct a more effective performance review

How can you make performance reviews a little more effective for your business? Can you link what you learn to the strengths and weaknesses in your business straight away? This overview should help you get more from scheduled review meetings with your team.

Calculating working capital for your small business

What is working capital? In a nutshell, working capital is the amount of money your business needs to meet its everyday financial obligations and still operate successfully. It’s the amount you need in available cash so that you can pay suppliers and employees, take care of maintenance costs, buy in stock, and pay your overheads.

How to motivate your team

It’s never been more important to run a small business that cares about its employees – that’s always been the right thing to do. But these useful pointers on motivating your team, effectively, can help to keep productivity up, too.

Customer retention for small businesses

What’s the best way to retain customers? How do you keep customers coming back to you instead of buying from your competitors? Customer acquisition clearly has a cost, but there may be more value to a small business in focusing on a strong customer retention strategy from the outset. This guide will help you to action that plan.

6 ways to improve your cash flow in a seasonal business

How do you improve seasonal cash flow? Some things seem obvious – like saving money while sales are up – but this guide gives you six other ways to improve your cash flow in a seasonal business, some of which you might not have considered before.