Advice for Meetings
Here are DOs and DON'Ts for meetings:
Please let us know if you can add to the above list.
- DO have a specific goal.
- DO have a written agenda
- DON'T be showy
- DO look the part
- DON'T arrive late
- DON'T be too business-like
- DON'T be too friendly
- DON'T talk too much
- DON'T listen too much
- DON'T argue with the customer
- DON'T discuss politics
- DON'T discuss religion
- DON'T give a sales pitch too early
- DO have product knowledge
- DO have business acumen
- DO remember names
- DON'T ask personal questions
- DON'T flirt with anybody
- DON'T be rude to anybody
- DO turn off your phone
- DON'T let the meeting meander
- DON'T overstay your welcome
- DON'T fail to follow-up
In his book, Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions, Guy Kawasaki outlined the path to "enchantment" in 10 steps.
1. Be Likeable
It's simple. You cannot achieve anything if people do not like you. When Kawasaki met Virgin founder Sir Richard Branson, Branson asked Kawasaki if he flew Virgin. "When I said that I was a United Global Services member, he got down on his knees and started polishing my shoes with his jacket. This is the moment I started flying Virgin," Kawasaki wrote.
2. Be Trustworthy
"You can like Charlie Sheen--that doesn't mean you trust Charlie Sheen,". Trust is never a given, so your company needs to be proactive and project an air of trust. One easy way to extend the first hand of trust to your customers is by giving them something, with no strings attached.
3. Perfect Your Product or Service
It's a lot easier to enchant people with great stuff than rubbish. So how can you tell if your product or service is 'great stuff?' It's great, if it's "deep, intelligent, complete, empowering, and elegant."
4. Tell a Great Story
Your company needs an origin story. Look no further than eBay, with its founding story of Pierre Omidyar wanting to enrich his girlfriend's ability to trade Pez dispensers (her alleged hobby). It's a cute story, but a made up tale. "But you need a story."
7 Ways to Make Customers Enjoy Working With You
The greatest compliment anyone can receive in the business world is "I just love working with you." That's especially true when that compliment comes from customers, because it means that you'll be getting their business time and time again.
Here are the seven rules for getting customers to love working with you, based upon conversations with Jeffrey Gitomer, author of the The Sales Bible and Dr. Earl Taylor, master trainer at Dale Carnegie:
- Make building the relationship more important than making the sale.
- Create opportunities for the customer to buy, rather than opportunities for you to sell.
- Have meaningful conversations and never give a sales pitch.
- Be curious about the customer as a person and let the friendship evolve from that.
- Don't try to be a hero who swoops in to solve the customer's problem.
- Believe in your heart that you and your firm are the best at what you do.
- Deliver exactly what you promised to deliver, no matter what.
Follow these simple rules, especially rules 1 and 7, and you'll have customers buying from you again and again and again.
Control Your Debtors
Many businesses are too wary of being over-zealous when chasing payment so as not to upset a customer, but avoiding the issue could have a catastrophic effect. Here are ten tips for what to look out for and what steps to take:
1. Know your customer
Whether the customer relationship is new or long-standing, regular credit reports are essential. They are quick and cheap and enable you to be fully informed of any changes with the business. Perhaps you could use a particularly large order as a trigger to run a check or simply implement one every quarter or six months. As well as granting peace of mind it limits your exposure. The next stage is to identify and weed out any high-risk business prospects.
2. Assess payment behaviour
Keep an eye on changes in payment patterns, times and delays. These small factors can indicate something is happening behind the scenes. It doesn’t hurt to call the customer and have an informal chat, just to make them aware of your interest. These checks can also indicate how long you will be waiting for payment. Also be aware that bills being settled later and later each month is a key indicator of a business’s deteriorating cashflow.
3. Introduce changes
Your customers may just have a culture of late payment but to combat this, steps should be taken to encourage faster payment, such as direct payment methods or more creative collection strategies.
Company Secretarial Q & A by Maria Fahy
THINKING OF CHANGING THE NAME OF YOUR COMPANY?
If you are planning on changing the name of your company, you should remember that the following will be required to be updated if the name is changed:
- The company website
- Bank account(s) for the company
- The Company Seal
It may be a useful exercise to research the cost of updating the foregoing together with the cost of the paperwork to change the company name before making your final decision on changing the name of your company.
CAN A COMPANY INSURE ME AGAINST ANY PERSONAL LIABILITY I MAY INCUR AS A DIRECTOR?
Yes, a company may purchase and maintain insurance for Directors and Officers in respect of liabilities they incur as a result of their role.
A company is, however, strictly prohibited from indemnifying a Director against a loss incurred as a result of his/her role as a Director in the company.
Deadlines and Reminders by Sinead Herlihy
1 - 21 November
- Preliminary Tax for acccounting periods ending between 1 - 31 December 2012
- First instalment of preliminary tax for "Large Companies" with a financial year ending between 1 - 31 May 2013
- Returns for accounting periods ending between 1 - 28 February 2012
- Pay balance of tax due on accounting periods ending between 1 - 28 February 2012
- Returns of third party information for accounting periods ending between 1 - 28 February 2012
- PAYE / PRSI* - P30 monthly return and payment for October 2012
- Dividend Witholding Tax return and payment for October 2012
- VAT* Return and payments for September / October 2012
- Relevent Contract Tax return and payment for October 2012
*Note: Where returns and payments are made electronically, the return and payment deadlines are the 23rd day of the month.
- Extended Income Tax pay and file deadline for 2011
- Extended CAT pay nad file deadline for beneficiaries who recieved gifts or inheritances with valuation dates in the year ended 31 August 2012
Note: To qualify for the extension, customers must both pay and file through ROS.