So already we are half way through 2016, our first year of business and so much has been happening. We're growing from strength to strength and receiving lots of glowing testimonials and referrals from our existing client base, associates and friends. Is there a greater feeling in the world than someone recommending you to their clients, family and friends? Maybe I'm a bit egotistical? Or maybe I just take great pride in my work and making clients happy.
Anyway I'd like to pick up on the referrals topic as like many start-up service businesses we rely heavily on referrals to generate new business. However instead of looking for a referral, I want to adopt the mantra of my business networking group "Giver's Gain" - if I give you business you will want to give me business in return, so I'm looking for any of my associates, friends or family who might be interested in any of the following services and would like me to introduce them to someone I know, like and trust to do a good job for them:
- Financial Advice - Pensions, Life Insurance, Critical Illness Cover, Savings and Investments.
- Mortgage Advice - Many of us let our mortgages slip on to the standard variable rate at the end of our mortgage term, when really a quick review and new deal could save you plenty of £££'s.
- Photographer - Covering Marketing, Wedding & PR photography. Many of us use LinkedIn and a picture of a night out, when really this is our shop window to a wide variety of users and we should at least make some effort and get a good headshot done professionally.
- Business Services - Many new start-ups are one man operations or family run businesses and don't have the resources to have HR, Legal & Finance departments. For this I'd recommend joining Business First Network with a wide variety of help lines and protection for the owner as well as a very nice membership plus discount card for all those client coffee meetings.
- Sustainability Consultant - Never has it been more important to be aware of the impact of wasted resources in the workplace. Starting from simple things like are we taking the right route to get to our suppliers? To much more complex areas like wastage in our processes. The benefits of a Green Policy can really help save money in the long run and also offers good marketing potential.
- Fire & Security - We all keep valuable assets in our business locations, are these fully protected? If not can you really afford to lose them?
- IT - Like fire & security have we the processes in place should our computer die or get stolen? Could we look more professional with a proper business email address instead of a Yahoo or Gmail address?
- Business Coach - It doesn't matter whether you’re a start-up business or a business that has been in existence for years, we all get stuck and don't know how to ask for help. I've already got help from some coaches I really trust and rely on. It's amazing how an outsider's perspective can see the simple issues. It also gives us accountability and actually makes us do something about the issues.
- Office Furniture - For me I spend a lot of time in my office, so I want it to be the best and most comfortable working environment possible. I believe that happy surroundings make us more productive.
- Personal Assistant - We aren't all conquering robots and admin is the one thing that lets most businesses down in my opinion. For me it's just not cost effective or a good use of my time to be the admin person in my business. By letting someone else look after the admin I can focus my attentions on networking and growing my business.
- Architect - Like any good service business, if you find the right business that looks after you, you'll stick with them. I've seen some of the projects this business has worked on and I wouldn't look elsewhere.
- Web Design - Probably the most critical in today's environment is your website. When people click on it for the first time, what do they see? Is there something to engage them, and keep them there and interested? I've been working with this business a while now and their customer service is second to none, they've taken my idea's and came up with a really fabulous site.
- Telecoms - There are so many different offerings in today's market, however I'm an advocate for shopping local and having a helpline I know is based locally when I have a problem. I've got great advice from this business and have a telephone system in my office that will take voicemails and send me an email with the voicemail so I can listen to the voice clip and act upon it. I can be anywhere in the world and still get my calls.
- Estate Agent - There are so many out there, and more and more are appearing. Thoughts are the property market is on the incline again but uncertainty still surrounds thanks to BREXIT! I like that this business offers everything for everyone from the first time buyer to the developer, they can source sites and manage your portfolio for you.
- Solicitor - This follows on nicely from the estate agent as I've been involved in a few conveyance deals and I know just how long these can be dragged out by having the wrong solicitor. Again like with the Architect if you’re a developer, if you get the right one you'll continue to use them. I can't rate this practice highly enough, they've been great with my business and for my business.
- Removals - Again following on the property theme of moving house or moving premises does anyone really enjoy moving their belongings to their new house? This business can take the hassle out of the move; they provide a packing service to ensure those valuables are safely moved to their new house. They'll even offer to clean your new house for you before you move in.
- Graphic Designer - Speaking from personal experience I have the most fantastic graphic designer out there. He's efficient and comes up with some great visuals for my business and its marketing projects, he get's project's turned round quickly and has created my tax tables, if you haven't got a copy please feel free to ask for them.
- Fire Risk Assessment - Slightly different from the install of the fire and security equipment is this business who will come in and ensure you have the correct policies and procedures in place to deal with a fire. That staff are adequately trained and that you have the right equipment to cope. You can't put a price on saving lives.
- Construction - Building your dream home might be a once in a lifetime decision for some of us, so we want to ensure we have the best people out there to build our dream home.
So with that said please feel free to get in touch if you or someone you know could avail of any of these services.
And remember "When it comes to numbers, our number is the only one you need"