Friday, 26 August 2011

week included marketing support, business planning, bookkeeping, new client meetings, first aid DVD sales,

Monday, 22 August 2011

Saturday, 20 August 2011

You can’t dismiss for gross misconduct anymore…

...unless you follow the right procedures!

If you employ staff, I hope that you never encounter this. It is one of the worst things that an employer has to deal with. You not only have an employee who has done something seriously wrong, you have to confront them about it AND you have to deal with the consequences of their wrong actions for the company. It can be as simple as sleeping at your desk, to being rude to clients and losing them, to embezzlement.

To make the process go smoothly and not be any more painful than it is going to be, here is a practical and straight-forward way to approach the situation.

Gross misconduct
Gross misconduct is often a long list in the handbook, covering a multitude of sins.If you have any suspicions of gross misconduct, then you need to suspend the person IMMEDIATELY (on full pay). Otherwise the lawyers will argue that there was no “breach of trust/contract”. If there had been, you would have removed them from the building immediately.
If you let them work to the end of the day, or even after lunch, then you will only be able to give them a Final Written Warning.The aim is to stop lawyers accepting tribunal claims on a “no win, no fee” basis. You can’t stop people starting claims. However if they have to pay legal fees out of their own pocket, then they will think twice about continuing.
- Suspend
- Investigate
- Hold a disciplinary meeting to hear their side of the story
- Make your decision
- Allow an appeal
- Reconsider your decision
- Make your final decision
- Await the tribunal form (only half kidding!)

This article was kindly provided by Carolyne Wahlen of Gap HR who offer a service, HR in a box, which is designed to increase your people management competence so that you are able to deal with staff issues with less struggle and effort. This means that you can spend more time with what you love in your business: working with your clients. We recommend a call to Carolyne on 01491 699 552 to see how she can help!

Thursday, 18 August 2011

week included prospective bookkeeping franchisee meetings, new DVD content, Pathfinder club and a few days holidaY

Monday, 15 August 2011

Top 5 skills in demand

A recent member survey by the Federation of Small Businesses asked which skills were most needed by Britain's smaller and growing businesses in 2011.Please click here to see the summary by Business Link

If your business requires external financial or marketing skills, then please consider an A1 company to provide this support for you.

Friday, 12 August 2011

The Pathfinder club - 'Lighting the way'

The Pathfinder club is now established with new members joining us at each meeting. The objective of the club is to provide our members with access to information, expert speakers and tools to help them grow their business whilst providing personal development knowledge only usually available from one to one coaching. The Pathfinder club, a partnership between A1 and SMI UK, meets on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month. To find out more please see the web site, speak to us or even visit a meeting to see for yourself. Mike Foster said "my closest friends and associates know how much working with SMI really changed my business and approach to life"
week included new client meetings, planning for DVD 2, bookkeeping, joint initiative with Oxford New Theatre for the Treehouse play centre

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Don't be modest or ashamed about your brand

At A1 we always enjoy the read of other newsletters and communications, no more so than those received from Ayd Instone. In Ayd's recent 'The Creative Ghost', he wrote the following thought provoking article:

I was at a networking event and to have something to discuss over breakfast, our host said we should all get out business cards out and vote on our tables (of 10) for the best one. These will then be passed to the front and the best one from all 12 tables will win a prize.Business cards were distributed to everyone on our table and we held up our favourite. I help up my own. All but one other of the ten people held up mine too. One lady said, "but you've voted for your own?". "Of course" I said. "I'm voting for the best one." She then put mine down and held up her own. I still won of course by 9 votes to 1.What would you do in a similar situation? Assuming there's not an amazingly good card around like mine, would you hold up your own? If not, why not?Are you too ashamed to hold up your cheap, flimsy embarrassing cards that you've invested not time and effort in or that still has the old logo on, or are those free ones with the generic stock image every plumber uses? If so we REALLY need to talk.You wouldn't go out to a business meeting to see potential clients in a big bag, or still dressed in your pyjamas so why send your business's brand out there dressed as a buffoon?

To read more about Ayd and sign up for your own copies of his excellent news, please visit

Friday, 5 August 2011

week included exciting new marketing project, invitation to speak at ICB conference, Bookkeeping franchise meetings, Pathfinder club meeting

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Looking forward to the tour of the Saïd Business School, Egrove Park site with the Oxford Business Network members later

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Keep selling in the Summertime

Most people say that the Summer months are poor months for marketing and cold calling to create new leads. But there may be some benefits of continuing your usual strong sales push as:

  • If your target prospect is quieter in the Summer months, then the key decision makers may have more time for you

  • Most people are only away for one or two weeks and not the full summer!

  • The gatekeeper may be on holiday!!

  • The decision maker will be expecting less calls in this period, so may not be so guarded or may even be willing to speak as you are one of the fewer calls?

  • It can be easier to get the decision makers name, as gatekeepers find it easy to say they are on holiday rather than some other reasons given. You will also be able to establish when that person is back from leave

But most of all your sales and marketing is an all year activity. If you turn it off in the Summer, your pipeline for the Autumn months will be minimal and it is always more motivating to start activity with something in the bag