We knew that, twice a year, my mom would abandon cigarettes: at tax time, and on the 31st of December when she would resolve to live clean. It was one of our family traditions.
When businesses started using fax machines, it revolutionised the way documents were sent to clients and suppliers. Gone were the days of using costly courier or postage services to communicate. While most businesses still make use of fax machines, almost all office communication is done via email.
The looming recession has come as bad news to South Africa’s unemployed job-seekers.
Only 21 377 000 of South Africans aged between 18 and 64, feel they have the potential to be economically active, and 26.6% of them are unemployed.
This figure now seems set to rise, and business owners are losing optimism.
The Office of the Ombudsman for Long-Term Insurance is an independent body to which consumers can complain if they believe they have been treated unfairly by their insurer. In the latest annual report, it is stated that the Ombudsman had recovered R184.4 million in the form of lump sums for consumers from long-term insurance companies.
The Ombudsman said it had received 9,815 written requests for assistance – which is an increase of 6% from the previous year. Of these complaints, 5,018 were chargeable complaints, with 3,491 cases full cases finalised. Three in 29.8% cases were resolved in favour of the complainant.
I have held a Private Banking account with a large South African bank for the past 24 years. Although this is an expensive account to have, I am provided with a Private Banker – which is one of the main benefits of private banking. However, after a long time of holding the account, I have come to the conclusion that for me, this is no longer good value for money.
My main concern is the overall lack of communication with my Private Banker. Whenever I try to phone her, I am met with a voicemail message which instructs me to contact her assistant. When trying to phone the assistant, who also doesn’t answer the phone, I am redirected again to the Call Centre. Here, after spending very long periods of time moving between the switchboard and related prompts, I am told to contact my Private Banker.
Someone once asked me what my least favourite job was as an entrepreneur…
Recently, I had advertised a job listing for an accountant to join our team at Northwood Financial Services cc. Through the advert, I’d asked the job applicants to include a number of attachments along with the CV and cover letter. Of the prerequisites and attachments received, I’d conducted an analysis of the first ten Graduates who had applied:
For any small or medium sized enterprise, it’s more than likely that the relationship between any given business and the client will be one of a personal nature. Bearing this in mind, it should become immediately obvious that knowing your individual client’s wants and needs could represent a significant advantage in making consistent sales. However, as any person who has gone to a party alone will know, forcing yourself to make friends with a stranger can be hard, uncomfortable and time-consuming work. So, as an entrepreneur, how can you tell which clients are worth your time and which are likely to sail off into the sunset never to be seen again? Continue reading “The Importance of Knowing Your Customer”
Consider the likes of Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, they are both rich, successful and, most importantly, fundamentally different from everybody else.
There’s a very good reason why the weird geeky kids in high schools across the world often go on to make a fortune: namely because it pays to be different. Think about it, in today’s world, even if you are one in a million, there are statistically 7000 people exactly like you.
The exact same principle applies through to running a small business. So, as an entrepreneur, how can you banish the generic business practices employed by most of your competitors and ultimately reap the rewards that come with offering something unique? Continue reading “How Being Different Can Make the Difference”