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For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Managing change - checklist

Any change in the workplace can make people nervous - but if handled well it can bring huge benefits. This checklist shows you how to implement change.

  • Identify the need for change: think about where you want to be in the future and what you need to do to get there; look at what your competitors are doing.
  • Accept that your systems and processes are not perfect; encourage employees to identify problems and opportunities for greater efficiency.
  • Prioritise changes which offer the greatest potential benefits.
  • Aim for a programme of continuous change in small steps, rather than a few large changes. Consider piloting risky changes before rolling them out.
  • Clarify the reasons for the change; confirm that the reasons are in line with your overall business objectives.
  • Think through the implications: for example, costs, changing requirements for personnel and skills, alterations to systems and policies.
  • Take advice from contacts or advisers experienced in the kind of change you want to implement.
  • Drive the change; make it clear that the change will happen, set a timetable, and plan how you will measure the results.
  • Assign responsibility and clarify individual roles; encourage employees to take an active role in delivering the change.
  • Sell the change to everyone who will be affected - for example, employees, customers and suppliers; explain the business benefits.
  • Answer individuals’ concerns and address their fear of change. Clarify the implications of the change for individuals and teams as well as the whole business.
  • Continually communicate; get feedback and suggestions.
  • Monitor progress against your plan; tackle problems as soon as they arise.
  • Reinforce the change; point out the benefits which it has delivered.
  • Continue to look for further opportunities for change.

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