Why networking can inspire you! (Life’s too short not to!)

 

Networking! Networking! Networking!


AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

By Angela Morris

Why networking can be inspiring and fun!

This week I have made some wonderful contacts and met some excellent people all as a result of networking.

It’s inspiring to meet these people who are hardworking individuals many of whom started at grass-roots level then proceeded to build their companies and are still actively building them!

 

 

Here are some questions to ask yourself when networking:

  • Who are the key individuals I need to connect with to be outrageously successful?

  • Which groups, people or companies could be most helpful to my business growth?

  • Who can help me to grow as person as well as an entrepreneur?

  • How can I connect with them?

Remember:

1)      Be selective with your efforts- Try to attend events that help  your business and your thought processes

2)    Create quality connections. Make relationships that will sustain your business over the long term.

3)      Help others to be successful. Connect them to potential clients, put in a good word for them, offer support, helpful suggestions, and share some of your workload in the form of subcontracts!

4)      Don’t just build your network, keep it up-to-date! Need I say more about twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook?

 Happy Networking Why? Because………..Life’s too short!

 NBWN NWBN 2

Incredible to meet with Sanaz Zaimi Co-head of Global Fixed Income, Currencies and Commodities Sales, Bank of America Merrill Lynch  and Caroline Marsh Property magnate (C4 Secret Millionaire) 

Finally, here are some more company links to websites as promised 

www.kaipersonaldesigns.com

www.mosmojo.com

www.floartbal.com

www.dreamtresses.net

www.m3cosmetics

www.folastillgot.it.com

www.camstrat.com

www.okapijo

 

 

Why networking can inspire you! (Life’s too short not to!) was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

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Life’s too short not get on with networking!

AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

By Angela Morris

 

Life’s too short (part 12)

Life’s too short not to get on with your networking!!!

I was honoured and privileged to speak at a fantastic event yesterday which was the National Black Women’s Network. I met some wonderful people but best all all was the person who invited me. Sonia Brown MBE.

For me one of the main objectives was to network and market my business!!! Why?

1. Networking brings income – Don’t be a snob. No-one is too high or too low for me to connect with.

2. Networking gives you brand awareness– How will people know you exist if you don’t get out there and meet them.

3. Networking helps you grow as an individual- I believe in “shared learning” we all have something to contribute to each other in business.

4. Networking can open doors that you could never have opened for yourself – by making yourself known you can connect with some influential people.

Going forward, book yourself on to some free networking events today! You may be surprised at who you meet.

As promised all  to those who gave me business cards I am going to give your website a shout out… here are some today and some more on Friday!

Because I mean to do business and…

Life’s too short!

http://www.soniabrown.co.uk

www.fragrancers.com

www.lyricalhealer.co.uk

www.blackvisions.tv

www.concious-vibes.co.uk

www.rainmakersworldwide.org.uk

www.sandraramsaymarykay@yahoo.com

www.remiray.com

 

 

 

Life’s too short not get on with networking! was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

Life’s too short not to do your marketing!

Life’s too short! (part 11)

AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

By Angela Morris

Marketing! Marketing! and more marketing!

Some things will never change in business and this is one of them. You must do marketing to make your business grow! I wish I could give you some shortcuts but not on this occasion!

Being a small business, you will really need get the word out about what you do. Unless you are able to afford TV or radio advertising!

Believe it or not there are lots of innovative ways to conduct marketing for your business which will cost you very little depending on your budget.

 

  1. You can attend networking event- Check out what’s happening in your local area for small businesses and book yourself in. Many are free and all you need to do is make sure you have lots of business cards ready!
  2.  Create your own Event- There are no rules to say that you cannot put on your own event but make sure you choose a nice venue to hold it and give enough notice. Remember first impressions count!
  3.  Produce a nifty giveaway It goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) make sure it’s something tasteful which you would like to receive if it were given to you.  Again do what you can afford!
  4. Send out marketing emailsIt won’t cost you a penny other than your time and what is your time if you are not making any money! Say what you’d say in person when you write it.
  5. Use your website to create credibility – What are Credibility pages? These pages are titled “About Us”, “Testimonials”, and even “Contact Us” pages can give your potential customers the confidence to deal with you, so make sure they give all the information they can.
  6. LinkedIn Connections-There is no point being connected if nothing comes out of it! Join some groups and endorse skills for other people. It could pay dividends!
  7. Facebook– Upload pictures of your products /website/blogs or conduct special promotional offers. Keep reminding people that you’re there!
  8. Twitter My personal “favourite”! (get it? :)) On a serious note I consider this to be more about creating international brand awareness than making sales. I now have a following of 16.4K and did not buy any of them!
  9. InstagramThere are now free apps to help you gain more likes and follows
  10. Every single ad you run should at least pay for itself! 

 

Remember you are not selling your product or service. You are selling what it does for the customer!

When you have tried the marketing method that works for you this will enable you to a) get more clients or customers b) increase the average value of an order or invoice and c) get your clients buying from you more often (repeat business).

So come on, what are you waiting for? Because…….

 “Life’s too short!”

 

Life’s too short not to do your marketing! was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

Life’s too short! (part 10) What, no discounts?

AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

b By Angela Morris

 

She said…… “No! I don’t do discounts!”

 

It can be hard to stand your ground when you are a start-up business but I learned an excellent business lesson from my niece, Jo Lennon who is running a very successful cake business. I am not above being taught by anyone who talks sense!

 

When Jo was working from her tiny kitchen she created a price list for her products (novelty cakes and cupcakes) and circulated them on her website and on her flyers. Typically there would always be one (you know, that one! Not you of course!) who would ask her if she would give them a discount.

Her bold reply was “The price list is there so that you know the prices, if it was going to be cheaper, then why have a price list?”  I personally thought this response was absolutely priceless! :)

 

When she moved from her kitchen to her shop would you believe people came in openly complaining about her prices that they were too expensive (by the way who does that?) Her response was “you might want to go to the supermarket instead”. I am amazed at how she remained calm, I am not sure I would be the same!

As you start out there will always be those who want to:

1)      Negotiate you down from your prices. Don’t let them do it (unless you want to charge “mates rates” for close friends and family members you get on with)

2)      Tell you they can get it cheaper elsewhere! So why are we still talking, you need to go  over there!

3)      Try and make you feel guilty because you have only just started out. But you need to start as you mean to go on or you might regret it later!

 

You have to be mentally strong and have a robustness, if you want a successful business as opposed to continually struggling because there will always be someone who doesn’t value your efforts, time and talents.

The end result is they want you on the cheap! Of course all their friends will come running but you will be run ragged with little fruit as your reward!

If you missed the last blog here she is again……Jo Lennon

If you’re going to do it, do it right! So stay calm (note to self!) but

 don’t compromise, don’t give discounts and don’t get bullied because………..

“Life’s too short!”

 

http://www.justbeautifulcupcakes.com

http://www.croydon guardian press release for Jo

Life’s too short! (part 10) What, no discounts? was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

Life’s too short! So handle your business!

Life’s too short! (part 9)

AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

By Angela Morris

“No one told me about this bit!”

These are the words of my niece Jo Lennon, who is now a successful business woman with a shop, two retail outlets and still expanding her Just Beautiful Cupcakes company

Jo has a degree in Education (her parents dream), has been a flight attendant (her childhood dream!) and now she is living her real dream! Where did she start her business? In her tiny kitchen where she stayed until she had so many orders (initially online) and not enough space left to fulfill her cake requests.

So what did she mean by that statement? Yes, you are right, being business woman is hard work but for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the areas she shared with me, which will need your attention:

 

  1. Finances – You need to keep and eagle eye on your income and expenditure. This takes tremendous discipline when you are running a business and if you can’t do it then give the task to someone who can help you (more so if you get a loan from the bank, remember it needs to be paid back at some point!) until you get the hang of it.
  2. Staffing recruiting can be a long process and it may be ongoing in the early stages until you finally find people you can trust with your business when you are not around! In the early days staff turnover can be high especially if you are the one doing hiring. Just because you know your talent does not mean you know how to employ the right people.
  3. Juggling family life– whilst it is easy to spend all your time “doing it for the family/kids” remember those people who used that excuse to never be at home or give any attention who ended up alone (you know, like on TV!) with money but no one to enjoy it with! If you have a family always take some time out in the week for them which will be uninterrupted you will be grateful that you did. Your business is not your whole life!

These were things she did not know when she started out but she describes her journey, as a business woman to me, as “constantly learning” which is a very wise assessment for a young person to make.

This week there is no I specifically want you to visit her site and see that dreams really do come true!

“Life’s too short!”

Jo Lennon

http://www.justbeautifulcupcakes.com

Further reading: 

Crystal Palace mum opens cake shop to meet demand for sweet treats

Life’s too short! So handle your business! was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

Life’s Too Short! (part 8)

LIFE’S TOO SHORT! (PART 8)

AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.com

By Angela Morris

Everyone who has a business needs a business plan! No exceptions!

There are many reasons why you should have a “good” business plan or just a plan full stop! Today, I am taking it right back to the bone! No, I will not be giving you amazing tips, instead I will give you  practical food for thought (or hopefully action)! So here we go…..

 3 reasons you need a good business plan:

 

 

1. It demonstrates that you are serious about your business- there is no point saying “it’s all in my head!” If you are guilty of this, stop it!  To keep it real when I hear people say this, a voice in my head says either:-

(a) This person is very lazy, or

(b) They are not serious, or

(c) They don’t know how to do one

You go ahead and choose the appropriate answer. If you don’t know how to do on then be humble enough to ask for help. If you’re not serious, stop acting as if you are!

2. It demonstrates that you can think strategically about your business-when you are able to explain what you are doing, where you are going and how you plan to achieve it, you are likely to attract interest to your business and who knows where that could lead to!

Just suppose someone like Richard Branson came to see you and said “I have £30k I am looking to invest in a start-up or up and coming company, I heard your name mentioned and would like to see your plans” What would you do? Hopefully pull out your well-presented, professional document, show him (or her), get the money and run J

3. It demonstrates that you understand that circumstances, income, outgoings and people are subject to change and that you are prepared to deal with the unexpected! In other words you are mature enough to recognise that everything is subject to change and you need your business plans to be flexible enough to keep going or recover!

I will close by sharing a lovely review I had from Butterfly Boutiques this week, on Twitter. The exact words were and I quote: “We would like to thank @Angiestrategy for a GREAT business plan & strategy which boosted my morale in my meeting!”

All of this because they had a good plan (done by yours truly) so, I therefore invite you to do the same. Why?

 

“Because life’s too short!”

 

Further reading:

The importance of having a Business Plan

5 reasons why you need a business plan

Life’s Too Short! (part 8) was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions

Life’s too short! (Part 7)

 AM Total Business Solutions Ltd - www.angelarmorris.comLIFE’S TOO SHORT! (PART 7) NOT TO BE REALISTIC AND FOCUSED ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS!

Hi Everyone

We are taking a more sober look at business today, so for those of you who don’t like vegetables, well it’s greens on the menu! :)

Remember Thomas Edison? Inventor of the light bulb? Just take a quick look at some of his quotes:

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” 

“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” 

And my personal favourite:

“We often miss opportunity because it’s dressed in overalls and looks like work!” 

Here are a few more insights to consider when starting your business…

1. PEOPLE PREFER THE EASIEST WAY!

People will seek to accomplish whatever needs to be done with as little effort as possible. They most successful inventions are the ones which make life easier! Think about all the gadgets you use on a daily basis, you have probably traded and upgraded at each opportunity. Why? Because we are quite lazy really. But that’s good, lots of business ideas flow from taking the burden off someone else’s shoulders! Keep your ideas simple.

2. PEOPLE REFUSE TO WAIT.

The old adage “act in haste, repent at leisure” doesn’t really apply to the current generation! We now live in the age of “fast food” and “microwave” dinners. Parallel this with business. Remember that we are now in a society where people are not patient at the best of times and impatient at the worst.  Be careful about promoting a business that requires the customer to wait because they might feel that they are working too hard for your service!

3. IT IS NOT AS QUICK AS YOU THOUGHT IT WOULD BE.

Regardless of how it may appear meteoric rises for a start-up company are few and far between (Yes, I know you want to be the exception!) so common sense must prevail. How many of you remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? Well starting a business is just like that, slow and deliberate, with no immediate rewards. Please bear in mind the more unique your goods or services, the longer it may take to educate and persuade potential customers of its benefits.  Be prepared for the long-haul and if it comes any quicker then count it as a bonus!

4. BE READY TO KEEP DEVELOPING YOUR BUSINESS

Regardless of how much time you spend carefully crafting your business you have to concede that the first, second or even third version of whatever you’re selling won’t be perfect.  It is a process of trial and error to ultimate see what works, what customers really want and what it will take to deliver against those expectations. You need to keep up with the market place no point in selling video tapes when we can download movies!

5. YOU WILL HAVE TO MAKE WISE CHOICES

Sometimes we just have to decide what not to do! This is a tough one I know, but it is the only path to excellence! Sometimes it is hard to say “No” to a customer especially as a start business and you really want to make some money. I like the following saying “if you chase every shiny penny you see on the sidewalk, don’t be surprised if you end up somewhere you didn’t want to be!”  Of course will be times when trade-offs have to be made and it will take mental discipline to make hard choices. Everyone may be running to you because you’re cheap, but is this the image you want to portray?

Don’t be put off by this, rather put it in your toolkit. Why, Because….

 

Life’s too short!

 

FURTHER READING

5 secrets to business success

Startup founders 6 secrets for success

 

 

 

By Angela Morris

Life’s too short! (Part 7) was originally published on Angela R Morris – Total Business Solutions