Business Tips: Managing People, Human Resource Management Part 2

No two days are likely to be the same in Human Resources, as tasks are many and varied, and although staff are largely pro-active, they will often have to be reactive if problems occur. An HR manager will be expected to;-

develop and implement policies on all HR related matters including pay and conditions, performance management, equal opportunities, disciplinary procedures and absence management

Produce staff handbooks, contracts and any records required.

work closely with all departments, ensuring line managers are aware of, and compliant with, policies and procedures such as such as health and safety

Recruit staff, develop job descriptions and person specifications, write and publish job adverts, review applications, shortlist candidates, interview and select candidates, negotiate package, make offers, sign contracts.

deliver inductions for new staff

undertake regular staff performance and salary reviews

advise on pay and remuneration packages, including promotion and benefits

negotiate with staff and their representatives on pay and conditions

Administer payroll and maintain employee records such as holiday taken or due.
interpret and advise on employment law

deal with grievances and manage disciplinary procedures

develop HR strategies with senior executives, and line managers, which consider immediate, medium and long-term staff requirements
analyse training needs, plan and deliver training

promote equality and diversity of opportunity

Professional qualifications
There are many organisations offering Professional HR Qualifications and Accreditation, and some will be more widely recognised in certain regions than others. In order to illustrate the likely areas of study, we will look at CIPD, a professional body for HR and people development, with more than 135,000 members who operate internationally, with centres around the world including Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Continue reading Business Tips: Managing People, Human Resource Management Part 2

Career Key Skills – Managing your Cash Flow

Cash flow forecast or cash budget is a forecast for income and expenditure for a particular time period. It usually covers the next week or month or quarter.
The cash flow document will list expected cash receipts from sales and other income, and all known and anticipated expenditure due to be made in the period.

It is the business equivalent of a household budget, and is designed to allow management to ensure income will be sufficient to cover expenses, and to seek outside financing if necessary.

Quick Facts: Managing your Cash Flow

Review the cash flow forecast regularly to ensure there are no missed payments or shortfalls in your account.

This will need to be at least weekly, if not daily, if cash is tight. This involves checking that forecast amounts become actual amounts i.e. expected payments are received, and expenditure goes to plan.

Raise and dispatch invoices promptly, endorse them with a due date and state that interest will be chargeable if they are not paid by the due date. Have a process in place to follow up late payments.

Know when your customers usually pay and follow up any delays. You need to know if your customer has cash flow problems, because if they go out of business, you will not get paid at all.

Keep stock levels tight to avoid spending money on unnecessary stock. Operate a “just in time” buying policy.

Check all spending is necessary or beneficial, and rationalise spending and costs. Continue reading Career Key Skills – Managing your Cash Flow

10 Profitable Large Scale Business Ideas in Nigeria

Nigeria is  a country with enormous business ideas and opportunities for entrepreneurs. Why is this so? It is because in Nigeria, there are lots of needs to satisfy and problems to solve. If you as an entrepreneur can find a need to satisfy or a problem to solve, then you are definitely on your way to establishing a successful and profitable business in Nigeria. In my earlier articles, I published the list of top profitable business opportunities in Nigeria, I also explained the pros and cons of doing business in Nigeria. Using 2015 statistics in the country, I listed top 10 business destinations in Nigeria.

In this article, I am going to list and briefly discuss using recent statistics in the country top 10 profitable large scale business ideas or opportunities in Nigeria.

List of Top Profitable Large Scale Business Ideas in Nigeria

1. Real Estate Business in Nigeria
Nigeria is a country with a growing population of over 173 million people and a growing deficit of houses. The statistics released late last year by the National Bureau of Statistics and the Central Bank of Nigeria show that for the country to meet up with her high demand of houses, a whooping 17 million housing units must be constructed annually. Real estate business does not only have to do with building houses for living, it also include structures for offices, for companies. Real estate business in Nigeria involves management of properties of lands and the buildings on it. This could be selling of those properties or renting of them.

2. Agriculture
If you are skeptical about this particular idea, then you are not current with the trend in the country. Nigeria seeks to diversify her economy following recent global fall in oil price. A typical example of how profitable this large scale business idea is can be seen in Obasanjo’s Farm. It is reported that Obasanjo Farm makes 34 million daily from the farm. Agriculture can be an exciting business to go into, and the beautiful thing is that is equally rewarding. The Federal Government are working on policies that will encourage and support Agriculture in Nigeria.

3. Hotel Business in Nigeria
The hospitality industry (hotel, guest house, etc) in Nigeria is fast growing. With Nigeria becoming the hub of foreign investment in West Africa and increase tourist attraction sites, hotel business in the country will continue to grow. The key is to target the right strategic location for it. When you locate hotels and guest houses in a place where there are more activities and visitors, you are sure to succeed in the business.

4. Manufacturing & Production Business in Nigeria
Nigeria seeks to manufacture most of her goods in the country instead of importing. This is evidence in her recent Forex Policy and the foreign currency restrictions in the country. There are so many business opportunities in the manufacturing industry in Nigeria. Nigeria currently import cars, electrical appliances and accessories, clothes and jeweleries, tooth-picks, to mention but a few. The country has enough resources to manufacture most of these imported goods in the country. This is a very profitable large scale business idea to venture into in Nigeria.

5. Fast Food Business
Fast food business is growing into a very profitable business opportunity in Nigeria. With the growing busy schedule faced by business owners, employees and others in the country, most people tend to settle for fast food which saves time. Continue reading 10 Profitable Large Scale Business Ideas in Nigeria

Business And Management Tips: Managing People, Human Resource Management

Human resource management (HR) or personnel management as it used to be termed, is the name given to the business function charged with maximizing the productivity and profitability of an organization by optimizing the effectiveness of its employees. Formal systems are used for the management of a company’s human resources or people.
This business function is considered more prominent now as we become aware of the importance of employee motivation, satisfaction and contribution to the performance of the business.

The HR manager is usually responsible for recruitment, employee compensation packages and job descriptions. They will specify working practices, pay, and conditions of employment and negotiate with external agencies the company may work with on employment matters.

They will hire staff, retain them and develop them to reach their potential so that they contribute the maximum to the organisation. They will be tasked with planning the company’s future staffing needs, ensuring the right balance of staff is employed with the appropriate skills and experience to develop the company, selecting the right person to fill job vacancies, negotiating salary and benefits packages and incentives, planning and managing induction and training, analysing jobs, running performance management schemes, resolving disputes, and communicating with staff.

They will cover all employee related matters, everything from daily record keeping to handing disputes that could lead to employee tribunals.

There are a number of specialist disciplines within HR, designed to optimise staff performance for the organisation. They include safety, diversity, reward packages, employee relations, employment law, organisation development and design, and learning and development and performance management.
In smaller companies, the HR manager may handle all of those matters. In larger organizations, each specialty may have its own HR officer.

Responsibilities range from administrative all the way through to executive, with staff liaising at all levels of the organisation.

HR strategy
The HR manager needs to have a good understanding of the business, its objectives and future plans so they can align HR policies to ensure the right staff are in place to achieve goals and objectives. Continue reading Business And Management Tips: Managing People, Human Resource Management

Build An Effective LinkedIn Profile

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A LinkedIn profile is an effective tool in your armoury. It helps to build an online network, and this will be useful in many ways, not just job search, but also to extend your reach, develop new contacts who you may do business with.

Here are some simple steps to follow.

  1. The first thing you need to do is upload a photograph. This helps people to recognise and remember you. A close head and shoulders shot , similar to a passport photo, but perhaps a little more relaxed , looks most professional.
  2. Develop your headline. You only have 120 characters, and you will insert your job title further down in current position, so don’t do that here. Words in the profile will be searched for, so use brief, descriptive, powerful words. So rather than Commercial Director, Smith Retail Stores, say Commercial Retail Expert.

  3. List your current position and ideally at least two previous positions. Use the same descriptive words as in your headline if possible .Describe your role for each position. This enables colleagues from former positions to locate and contact you.

  4. Complete the summary section of your profile. Write this in the third person to avoid using” I” repeatedly .Describe who you are, what you do and how you help people. Look at other people s entries to help get you started. Choose some you like and find powerful and emulate them.

  5. Fill in the specialities section. These are terms that will show up in search results, so this is a bit like choosing keyword for SEO –don’t use words that describe what you do. Instead choose search terms that you think people in your target market might use to find you, or search for background, experience, products and services. Words that describe your skills and expertise. E.g. for a retail background I might use, sourcing, negotiating, range development, product management, category management, Buying.
    Continue reading Build An Effective LinkedIn Profile

SELF DRIVING CARS: NOT A PIPE DREAM!!!!!

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The debate really should not be about when we will see self driving cars on the road. Given everything we know, my bet would be within the next 5 years.

It’s no longer a technology problem – both Google and Tesla have demonstrated that. The real hurdles to be crossed are regulatory in nature – a) Elon Musk says the government won’t allow self-driving cars until it can be proven that they are 10x safer than manually driven cars or b) What would insurance for a self-driving car look like?

There is a more interesting discussion surrounding the opportunities that this technology is going to bring. Or on the flip side, the jobs and companies that are going to disappear.

Opportunities that will come along:

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Technology Companies: The obvious opportunity is for the tech companies such as Google and Apple. We’ll be sitting in a pod/self-driving car going from home to work. Some of us might read a book on the way. But let’s not kid ourselves. Have you seen what most of the folks on buses are doing? Yes – most of us will be surfing the web on our mobile devices. The more we surf, the more we search. And the more we search, the more Google grows. And simultaneously we will be listening to music. And the more music we listen to, the more iTunes grows.

Computer engineers: The reason I cite computer engineering as an opportunity is because as the number of self driving cars on the roads increase, there are going to be plenty of newer technological problems to solve. For instance, each car will start to share information with other cars – where it’s coming from, where it’s going, when it will reach its destination, or even how much gas or charge it has remaining. The sky is the limit for the kind of data that will be shared and what can be done with this data. For example, this data might potentially be used to reduce traffic jams. And don’t forget about all the apps that have to developed for a self-driving car.  Data scientists and computer engineers – gear up. Demand for you is going to grow even higher. Continue reading SELF DRIVING CARS: NOT A PIPE DREAM!!!!!

How To Take The Perfect Fireworks Selfie

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With Bonfire night just around the corner, we are here to help you take the perfect snap.

Firework photos don’t always look the way you want them to. Anyone else end up with dark, smudged photos every November 5th? Well, not this year. We have rounded up the top tips for getting firework photos just right with a humble iPhone. Get ready for you most-liked Instagram snap of the year!

1. Use a long exposure app.
Download the app LongExpo for your iphone to create a much better long distance image. You need to set your phone up on a steady surface, but you can then do things like write messages with a sparkler and capture the whole message in just one snap!

2. Turn HDR On
This blends multiple exposures together so you should get more firework action behind you in your selfie. Just make sure your phone keeps the original too.

3. Use Burst Mode
Hold down the shutter button to take multiple shots, there’s no point having the perfect selfie if you end up missing the fireworks! Continue reading How To Take The Perfect Fireworks Selfie

Are The Big 3 Lapped By Technology?????

Speaking on the day of Ferrari’s initial public offering, the company’s chairman who is also CEO of Fiat Chrysler said America’s auto industry needs to kick things into overdrive to keep up with innovators in Silicon Valley.

“This industry in general has to open up to disruptors,” Marchionne told CNBC. “I think we have been late to the party.”

Though Marchionne’s comments were largely overshadowed by the hoopla surrounding Ferrari’s first day of trading, they reflect what many people have been thinking for some time: Detroit may be the heart and soul of America’s auto industry, but the brains appear to be shifting to California. That’s where Tesla,Google, Apple and other technology firms are changing how cars and trucks operate. Continue reading Are The Big 3 Lapped By Technology?????

Top 7 Books An Entrepreneur Should Read!!!!!

One of the major trait every entrepreneurs have in common is reading. As an entrepreneur, you need to feed your mind daily. Books lead us into new ways of thinking, help us push through the tough times, and teach us how to become successful business men and women. Here are 7 books every entrepreneur should read. 

1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (1989) by Stephen Covey

A best-selling self-help and business book that has been translated into 34 languages, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People details the, you guessed it, seven elements that make a successful individual.
The steps are broken into three sections: dependence, independence, and interdependence, and the lessons range from how to be proactive and take steps one at a time to how to engage other people by finding win/win situations and understanding others first.
Seven Habits is a classic book about leadership and success. There’s a reason it has sold millions of copies: the lessons are timeless and they work. My personal favorite is the “Win-Win” habit, which says that one of your first priorities should be to create a product or service that benefits your customer, and then worry about the rest.

2. Zero to One: Notes Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel

The following excerpt sums up the concept of Theil’s book: “Doing what someone else already knows how to do takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something familiar. But when you do something new, you go from 0 to 1.”

This bestseller is geared specifically towards the startup community as it offers invaluable advice on what to consider and what to avoid before moving forward. Additionally, the author offers his philosophy on business, which helps the reader generate new ideas he or she may not have considered previously.

3. Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson

Most business books give you the same old advice: Write a business plan, study the competition, seek investors, yadda yadda. If you’re looking for a book like that, put this one back on the shelf.
Rework shows you a better, faster, easier way to succeed in business. Read it and you’ll know why plans are actually harmful, why you don’t need outside investors, and why you’re better off ignoring the competition. The truth is, you need less than you think. You don’t need to be a workaholic. You don’t need to staff up. You don’t need to waste time on paperwork or meetings. You don’t even need an office. Those are all just excuses.
What you really need to do is stop talking and start working. This book shows you the way. You’ll learn how to be more productive, how to get exposure without breaking the bank, and tons more counterintuitive ideas that will inspire and provoke you.
With its straightforward language and easy-is-better approach, Rework is the perfect playbook for anyone who’s ever dreamed of doing it on their own. Hardcore entrepreneurs, small-business owners, people stuck in day jobs they hate, victims of “downsizing,” and artists who don’t want to starve anymore will all find valuable guidance in these pages.

4. The Startup Playbook: Secrets of the Fastest-Growing Startups From Their Founding Entrepreneurs by David Kidder

The title says it all. If you’re looking for a wide array of lessons learned and entrepreneurial experiences, this book is for you. Sharing insights from 41 different founders, The Startup Playbook covers everything from leadership lessons to finding one’s niche.

5. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t (2001) by Jim Collins Continue reading Top 7 Books An Entrepreneur Should Read!!!!!

3 Ways The Internet of Things Will Change Every Business!!!!!

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Have you entered the Internet of Things yet?

If you have a FitBit or other activity tracker that talks to your smartphone, you have.  If you have a thermostat, alarm system, or lights in your home that you can control with your computer or phone, you have.

But even if you haven’t got one of those devices yet, I’m betting you will within the next 5–10 years.

And I’m not making that prediction based on how useful or cool the current Internet of Things products are right now, but rather based on the fact that I believe the Internet of Things is going to change business at a fundamental level.

I believe there are three key ways in which the Internet of Things will change every business:

1. It will allow companies to make smarter products.

It used to be that we only expected our phones to be able to make phone calls.  Today, most consumers expect a lot more from the device they carry in their pocket.  So, while it might seem strange or unnecessary at first glance to have a smart tennis racket, an internet-enabled frying pan, or a smart yoga mat, these are just the first forays into the world of the Internet of Things.

Only time will tell which will stick and which will go the way of pet rocks, but the point is that businesses will have the opportunity — and eventually, the imperative — to make “smarter,” more useful, more connected products.

2. Enable smarter business operations and smarter decisions.

A big part of the Internet of Things isn’t so much about smart devices, but about sensors. These tiny innovations can be attached to everything from yogurt cups to the cement in bridges and then record and send data back into the cloud.  This will allow businesses to collect more and more specific feedback on how products or equipment are used, when they break, and even what users might want in the future.

Rolls Royce aircraft engines contain sensors that send real-time data on the engine’s function back to monitoring stations on the ground. This information can be used to detect malfunctions before they become catastrophic, and possibly to investigate — and hopefully prevent — the causes of aircraft disasters. Microsoft uses software that constantly collects data on what features are being used for its products, so it can strip away the least popular ones and focus on the most popular.

3. Change in business model

Continue reading 3 Ways The Internet of Things Will Change Every Business!!!!!