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Elon Musk is purportedly in the closing stages of buying Twitter for a cool $44Bn - there have been extremely mixed reports online as to whether people are all for it, or think it’s the worst plan ever. Twitter has been likened to a cesspool for many years - does this mean he’s now going to come in and clean it up and make it a more positive environment? Or will it just make things worse? Then again, as we’ve said many a time, your experience on any platform is predominantly decided upon who you follow and interact with - if you don’t follow or get involved with toxic discussions or viewpoints, regardless of platform, then your experience will be wildly different to those who do. We are all in charge of our own networks, both personal and professional, and we are all the masters of who and why we interact with certain people. The network and results we see, is what we deserve, because we are all capable, and should, maintain our networks to keep them positive, useful, and forces for good. So will Elon buying Twitter make a massive difference? Or will the majority of us not even notice a thing, for the most part? Is it not simply better to just focus on our own personal and professional networks, treat them like a garden - nurture them, give them life, feed them, so they can be the best they can be? There’s no short cut to creating a powerful, useful network that’s helpful to all parties. It takes time, patience, maintenance and a lot of nurturing. But the results when done properly can be absolutely fantastic.
We found an article from Foundation Inc that was all about how to write better headlines from the pros at LinkedIn. Needless to say, our interest was piqued, as getting better at anything has to be a good thing, and if it helped our combined LinkedIn activity, then that’s always good, no? But after finding a couple of useful bits, like keeping things succinct etc, the ‘tips’ went on to be more and more….well….ludicrous - to the point that these ‘tips’ were no longer useful, and were encouraging people to write more and more in a clickbait style. Now, clickbait, as we know, is designed more often than not, to be deceptive in some way. Maybe the article the headline is for isn’t quite what it the article is all about, maybe it’s a ludicrous or sensationalised headline to make the article more appealing, whereas in reality it’s pretty mundane, and/or obvious - leaving the reader distinctly NOT shocked, entertained or informed. Clickbait has become the scourge of the internet, so we’re quite sure that LinkedIn pros SURELY aren’t endorsing such practices? So we delved a little deeper into the world of clickbait, what it’s for, who does it, and how to combat it so you don’t make the same mistakes in your LinkedIn posts, blogs, articles or indeed any content you produce. So have a listen, and hopefully it’ll be useful for you in your own business, being able to write enticing headlines, without it sounding like pure, unadulterated clickbait. (Because you won’t BELIEVE what happens next!) (Joke!) References mentioned in this episode: https://foundationinc.co/lab/write-better-headlines-from-the-pros-at-linkedin/ https://bettermarketing.pub/how-to-write-genuine-enticing-headlines-without-clickbaiting-b2728381e26a Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because all of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (DoubleJ Consulting)
In this episode we talk about what it means to start a business in 2022, to take the leap from ‘safe’ employment into the world of the self-employed. A topic close to our team (and hearts!), as Jason has recently done just that - stepped back from many years service as an employee in a big business, to starting his own journey into the world of self-employment. We look at the reasons WHY people want to start their own businesses, whether you should go down the Ltd company route, or stay as a Sole Trader. What are the pitfalls, things to look out for, things you absolutely should be aware of before starting your journey into self-employment. As well as plenty of top tips and advice from some useful sources which will hopefully aid you in your own personal journeys. However we also discuss the countless benefits of being self-employed and all the freedom, flexibility and work/life balance that it can afford to you as well. Can it be a treacherous journey when you don’t have that ‘comfort blanket’ of being employed with a steady pay check? Of course. But if you’ve done your research, put the hours in, build a strong network around you and put your all into your new business - you have every chance of success. Sources referred to in this episode: https://www.inc.com/entrepreneurs-organization/3-tips-for-starting-a-small-business-in-2022.html https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/smallbusiness/article-10321963/How-start-business-2022-Ex-Dragons-Den-star-Piers-Linney-shares-six-tips.html Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (DoubleJ Consulting)
With the meteoric rise that Canva has seen over the last few years, it was inevitable that competitors would rise to get a slice of the action. Given how Canva has completely changed the game in the world of graphic design, democratising the way graphics (and now of course video) is created by not just graphic design professionals, but by everyone - through the use of templates and pre-made elements that people can incorporate within their designs; a major player had to take notice. The major player that has now come forward to throw their own hat into the ring? Adobe. Yes, Adobe, famed for their legacy of graphic design, photo editing and video production heritage, have revamped their ‘Spark’ offering, and have now created and launched ‘Creative Cloud Express’ just before Christmas. With a platform very similar to Canva, with the ability to create designs from pre-made and pre-sized templates with the ability to bring in elements from the Adobe stock image library and font collection, they have launched it as a freemium model, so there’s a free account, and a premium account. Pricing is also very similar to that of Canva, so you know for sure that Canva have taken notice. We know just as in other industries, you don’t have to be the first to market to be the best - so will this be a threat to Canva? Quite possibly. But what we do know for sure, is that competition breeds innovation, so long term, it’ll mean Canva, (and Adobe) will both need to up their game in features, benefits and services, in order to retain their customers. So if both are going to compete against each other to be ‘the best’, then either way, it’s got to be good for the consumer. Interesting times ahead I think! Resources referred to in this episode: https://www.creativebloq.com/news/creative-cloud-express https://techcrunch.com/2021/09/14/canva-raises-200-million-at-a-40-billion-valuation/?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAFk1_o3PbcLXBURS-AudkBIvT19EXPqqKewyLHwJR7n0Hs7oRMpRvN_4KOxXFrmsFPT5Vg2ItfsVoGL7fY0L72xnO1FIJaVX0hQdGCllAECRDA-S9p1rWJKf9FwPV_K0uJJXvkc7pvH5huEh9-Ia8DkJG6gXsuQcWT-yr2sk49GP https://www.forbes.com/sites/alexkonrad/2021/09/14/canva-raises-at-40-billion-valuation-and-founders-pledge-away-their-wealth/?sh=11cdf5cd7ba9 Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (DoubleJ Consulting)
In our final episode of 2021, we just wanted to give you a few updates of things you need to know.  As you know, we had to cancel our December networking event due to the current Omicron spread and the restrictions that are currently in place - we decided to wait until the new year instead of putting on a substandard event, so fingers crossed this is just a very temporary suspension of our events, and we look forward to welcoming you back hopefully early in 2022. In the meantime, we will continue to run our weekly Twitter Hour, #brummiesbizhour every Tuesday morning at 11am. Our last one of the year will take place on Tuesday 21st Dec, then we’ll be breaking for the holidays, and will return on Tuesday 4th January 2022, to bring you your online networking fix to meet and mingle with other Midlands business folk. BrumPod will also now be taking some time off for Christmas and New Year, but rest assured we’ll also be back come the new year with lots more great guests throughout 2022 offering some brilliant insights into various industries, imparting knowledge and wisdom and top tips that’ll hopefully spark some ideas for you in your business. So for now, on behalf of the entire Brummies Networking team, may we wish you the merriest of Christmases, and the healthiest and happiest of New Years, and let’s hope for much better times in 2022 and beyond. Whatever you’re doing over the festive break, make sure you enjoy yourselves, and come back refreshed and raring to go in January 2022.  Thank you for listening throughout 2021, we can’t wait to be back in the New Year.  Merry Christmas everyone. Sign up to our mailing list: https://brummies-networking.co.uk/mailing-list-sign-up/ Brummies Networking LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/company/brummies-networking Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com “Additional SFX from https://www.zapsplat.com“
Well, it’s official, Christmas is fast approaching now from all angles, whether you’re ready or not! The wine is starting to flow, the nibbles are out, and people are gathering at all manner of festive themed networking events at this time of year. Hopefully your workplace is putting on some kind of Christmas party this year after the tumultuous time we had last year, and now the hospitality industry is so well versed in keeping venues and guests as safe as possible, we hope you enjoy letting your hair down however you want to this year, to celebrate another pretty tough 12 months. For all those self employed and freelancers, networking events can in many ways feel like the office ‘works do’ you don’t get to normally attend! So it’s always worth having a look through LinkedIn to see what events are happening, as there are often some that are designed especially for freelancers to meet up and have a collective office party for those without offices or colleagues! Whatever events you attend this year, we hope you enjoy yourselves, as quite frankly, you deserve it. None of us have had the best time this last 20months or so, so THIS Christmas, it needs to be a thoroughly enjoyable time. But just remember, even though the wine is often flowing and it is tempting to let your hair down, always be mindful that you’re always representing your business, whoever you’re with - make sure people remember you for the right reasons! Don’t even think about going NEAR that photocopier! So get out there, enjoy the festivities, attend some great events, and meet some great people. We’re all in this together, so let’s get out there and enjoy it. Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
In this episode, we discuss LinkedIn’s latest offering - an in-built freelance services marketplace - an additional function within your LinkedIn profile for adding ‘open to work’ banners to your profile picture, as well as the option to add various keywords about your service offering, so people can find you more readily when they need your skills. It supersedes the ‘ProFinder’ offering they’d trialled a while back and, after a beta trial in the USA earlier this year, this service is now fully available to every LinkedIn user. And most importantly - it’s free. That’s not to say that sometime down the line there may be chargeable elements, but we’ll have to wait and see on that score. For now, you can enable your profile to be searchable for a variety of keyword service offerings, so when people are searching the marketplace, your profile should then, theoretically at least, have more prominence for people to contact you directly about. LinkedIn are wanting to offer a service that’s akin to the likes of UpWork, Fiverr, PeoplePerHour etc to add more value to the LinkedIn experience. However, unlike the competition which will often just be a ‘jobs board’ from people wanting services which then invites freelancers to pitch/propose their wares, which can often lead to a race to the bottom when it comes to pricing; they’re doing things differently. The onus is on the person seeking work to be done to contact the relevant (to them) person to go about offering specs and negotiate pricing client-provider.  We hope that this will be a positive step forward for LinkedIn, adding more features and relevance to an ever-expanding user base of freelancers and small businesses, edging away from their historical perception of being a job-seeker/recruitment oriented website like it was in its inception, with it being a glorified CV hosting jobs board. This should mean good news to the small business and freelance community of the UK, and indeed, worldwide. It’s free (for the moment at least!) so well worth you checking out. Find the relevant buttons in your usual ‘edit profile’ section on LinkedIn. Reference: https://techcrunch.com/2021/10/27/linkedin-rolls-out-its-freelance-services-marketplace-globally-after-picking-up-2m-users-in-smaller-us-beta/ https://www.linkedin.com/services Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
Running our businesses, (and indeed lives), old school - does it still have a place in an ever-more digital society? With so much focus these days on people, and indeed businesses taking advantage of the latest platforms and technologies, i.e. the TikTok generation (something that completely eludes us, I might add) - there doesn’t seem to be anywhere near as much focus on tried and tested marketing methods that would now be considered ‘old school’. But does old school mean old and futile?  Not when you consider that so many traditional forms of marketing are seemingly on the rise, whereas you’d think it only the digital platforms could wave such a flag. Direct mail marketing is dramatically on the rise, and has been on the rise year on year for many years now. Radio advertising is seeing its biggest growth surge since one company started tracking radio ad spend a decade ago. And with so many other traditional routes still being completely viable ways to get word about your business out there, from business card drops in cafes, company front desks etc, speaking at events, sending snail mail, cold calling, trade shows, exhibitions, local community level activity through print publications, the list goes on. It goes to show that just because something’s offline, doesn’t mean it doesn’t still work. If anything, with fewer people in the offline pond, it could mean that you have a much better advantage of standing out from your competitors. What about you? Are you mainly online? Offline? Mix of both? In our view, a hybrid approach must work the best to get the optimum results. Resources: https://www.nme.com/news/music/uk-vinyl-sales-in-2020-are-the-highest-since-the-early-90s-2846310 https://www.selectabase.co.uk/2021/01/direct-mail-2021-the-rise-in-demand/ https://www.biznessapps.com/blog/10-offline-marketing-strategies-that-still-work-today/ http://www.insideradio.com/free/radio-forecast-to-grow-12-in-banner-year-for-traditional-media/article_03d46046-b872-11eb-ae60-f738756f6466.html Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
In this episode we talk to Dan Hoff-Rodrigues from CX Squared Talent Solutions based in the Midlands. Dan’s company focusses on recruitment for the tech industry - but he doesn’t work in the traditional model of recruitment, but favours a ‘Talent As A Service’ model, helping to drive the industry into the 21st century. You’ll learn about his career path to date bringing him to where he is now, and why he wanted to disrupt the face of recruitment by doing things in a different way.  Why he’s a ‘Duman’ - a doer that’s a human - someone that doesn’t spend time endlessly planning (see Ep53!) but gets on with it and takes action where it’s necessary, solving problems where he finds them. Dan additionally explains the ‘why’ to what he does - doing what he can to find solutions to the digital skills gap, digital poverty, tech in education, helping to get kids switched on to the tech industry early; learning skills they wouldn’t have otherwise thought about. As well as how to get those who are massively under-represented into the tech industry, in various roles. He also dispels a lot of myths and misconceptions about the industry as a whole, gives advice on how you can break into the industry - as it isn’t just about being able to code, or having to have certain qualifications or skills.  His aim is to level the playing field of the tech industry, and is doing so not just through his business, but via various initiatives he has set up (Diversity In Tech Brum, & The Brum Muse) to help many people learn, connect, and get the career they want in tech. You can find out more about Dan at the following places. https://www.cx-squared.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/danrodrigues7/ The Recruitment Doctor - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWI_LNkWhdb82O8-zrfgO6w https://twitter.com/cx2talent https://twitter.com/brummuse Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
A raw and unplanned episode filled with some topical updates, including the state of the electric vehicle infrastructure, as well as updates on the Birmingham Clean Air Zone and how that’s going. Electric Vehicles & Infrastructure: Midlands Connect calls for urgent action needed to speed up the expansion of EV charging points in the midlands. EV use will increase by more than 3000% by the end of the decade, and currently we’re lagging behind. Around 500 charging points are being installed every month at the moment; but industry bodies say that what’s needed is 700 points a DAY - so lots still to be done to improve our EV infrastructure to make it more appealing to petrol and diesel motorists. Clean Air Zone: Since the Clean Air Zone was implemented in Birmingham back in June this year, the latest studies have shown that pollution is down within the zone by nearly 20%. A good start. And good for the health of the people living and working within its boundary. But so far, there has seemingly been signs of pollution increasing on the ring roads surrounding it. Further plans need to be made to ensure that the pollution problem isn’t just being moved elsewhere. It’s early days, and things might change so no conclusions can be drawn yet, but it’s certainly something the council need to keep monitoring. We round out the episode with what plans mean to you and your business, and how they should be adaptable. Sometimes by over planning, it leads to procrastination and simply not getting the job done. Like having a meeting to discuss what’s going to happen in the next meeting. Sometimes you just need to get on with it and make things happen. But plan for plans to change! Resources: https://www.business-live.co.uk/manufacturing/urgent-action-needed-speed-up-21624279 https://inews.co.uk/news/birmingham-clean-air-pollution-charging-driving-city-centre-1185720?ito=twitter_share_article-top https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9982253/Charging-points-electric-cars-preset-turn-NINE-HOURS-day.html Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
LinkedIn now has nearly 740million members, & over 55million registered companies. Microsoft bought Skype in 2011. They then bought LinkedIn in 2016. They’ve had the ability to bring in video technologies to LinkedIn for years now.  So why the delay?  At the beginning of 2020 saw the massive rise of Zoom, from a little heard-of video conference app, to global powerhouse, exponentially increasing their user base in a very short space of time thanks to the pandemic. With LinkedIn bringing their own version out now, is it too little too late? What new features will they be bringing to the party? Even with the massive user base LinkedIn has, will it be enough for their own video conferencing platform to thrive when there’s so much other competition out there who may, arguably be doing it better, and easier? Or are they just playing catchup? We explore all the above in this episode, and also offer some top tips as to how to get the best out of LinkedIn generally, to maximise your business success on the platform. Resources: https://www.searchenginejournal.com/linkedin-launches-native-video-meetings/416388/#close https://kinsta.com/blog/linkedin-statistics/ https://techcrunch.com/2021/08/31/linkedin-is-scrapping-its-stories-feature-to-work-on-short-form-video/ Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
When you’re self-employed, a freelancer or solopreneur, it can be difficult to make the time to take time away from your business and go on holiday. There’s often guilt about not being available to your clients, worries about loss of earnings, pressures of getting someone in to cover for you while you’re away; meaning there are so many people that don’t take annual holidays at all. This can be extremely damaging to your physical and mental health. We aren’t robots, we’re humans - we can’t work 24/7, 365 days of the year. It’s not possible. Otherwise we’ll burn out and crack up, which is precisely what we don’t want. A UK study showed that 1 in 4 freelancers take no annual holiday, and of those that do, 45% take their work with them. In this episode, we delve into strategies that you can implement practically, to make your life easier when planning to take time off. Something that we ALL, regardless of whether you’re self-employed, or an employee, need to do to ensure we relax, switch off, reflect and recharge. Whether holidaying in the UK or abroad, taking time away from your business doing something completely different is vital, and will reinvigorate you no end. So please make sure you do it! Resources: https://www.crunch.co.uk/knowledge-productivity/holiday-when-self-employed-get-away-with-getting-away Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
In this episode, we reflect on the fact we have just hosted our first in-person networking event in over 17 months! It was a strange feeling being back in our spiritual home of networking - but quickly the strangeness subsided into a feeling of (relative) normality, and absolute familiarity. We had a (capped) roomful of people eager to get back to business networking, with great, deeper conversations happening throughout. It really was great to see. We also reflect in this episode about how we can all keep our networks effective, and fresh. Reconnecting with people you haven’t spoken to for a while. Meeting up with people that for so many months have been merely 2D avatars. So much is lost when we’re confined to Zoom meetings; nuance, body language, context. As good and such a Godsend things like Zoom have been during the pandemic, it’s nice to actually see humans again, and keep the connections going, getting to know people again on a deeper more personal level; something that just isn’t quite so effective online. We also remind everyone in this episode what we’re up to and how we’re going to be continuing our monthly events ongoing, whilst keeping it as safe as possible for everyone attending. We can’t wait to see you again at the next event. Eventbrite link will be going around very soon, so stay tuned. Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
In this episode, Richard and Iwan give a run down of some of their top productivity tools that they simply can’t live without. (What they did before then, who knows…) We cover various business tools, apps, software and platforms that simply make life easier in 2021 and beyond - tools that will often save you lots of time and effort, in turn making you a more productive business owner. There are also mentions in this episode of great free or low cost alternatives to the more well known ‘big boy’ software giants, where alternatives may well fit the bill for you more, without having to spend big money on costly annual subscriptions. Covering various aspects from office tools to help admin, to social media and the creative industries, there’ll be something for everyone in this. Notable mentions include re-affirming elements that people often forget about that can be highly useful, like Mail Merge in Microsoft Word, Canva for graphic design which also now enables you to create videos, as well as alternatives to Microsoft Office, and Adobe Photoshop. So if you’re in the market for some new software and tools to help you or your employees be more productive and don’t want to break the bank, this episode is for you! Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
A new (to us) technology has been stumbled upon - the digital business card. An NFC-enabled plastic credit card sized business card that can be scanned on the recipient’s phone, loading up a browser page with all your relevant contact details and web links - with a big shiny button front and centre to allow that person to immediately save your details to their phone’s address book. The technology isn’t necessarily that new - but it’s the first time we’ve seen it in such a slick easy to use and deploy format. Will digital business cards replace traditional business cards, or will they still have their place? Will they be strictly the domain of the tech savvy super nerd? Could they be advantageous at networking events in a post-pandemic world where people more than ever are conscious about viruses, germs and touching surfaces that others have also touched? We delve deeper into this technology to explore how they could be used, as well as their positives and negatives. (And of course, Rich just HAD to buy one to check it out for himself - and so far, positive reviews). Not an ad/sponsored episode in any way - but in case you were curious, here’s the link to the digital business card he bought: https://www.tapitag.co We also reiterate that we’re HOPING to bring our in-person events back in August. Do make sure you’re on the mailing list because as soon as we have concrete info, that’s the first place we’ll be letting people know, as well as posting the same on our socials. So do follow those too. https://brummies-networking.co.uk/mailing-list-sign-up/ Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
A phrase we’ve all heard before - ‘jack of all trades, master of none’ - certainly some truth to it - albeit with some negative connotations. In this episode we’re discussing generalists versus specialists - which is more preferable? Maybe there’s no right or wrong answer, as there are a multitude of advantages and disadvantages to both. Whether you’re an employee or a business owner, this topic will apply to you, as you may already fit on one side of the fence on this one, possibly happy with where you are - perhaps you want to change your situation. Generalists have a good understanding of a wide selection of topics and skills, often transferable across various situations. They can adapt quicker, navigate through uncertainty, and are able to offer a multitude of services, and be better at multi-tasking. Specialists often earn more money because it takes longer to study to get to that position, becoming an expert your field. You’re often more sought-after by head-hunters, more likely to be a thought-leader, resolve high level issues and streamline work processes. But on both sides of the scale, there are also disadvantages - it’s up to you to work out which is better to be in your own business situation. Have a listen as we delve deeper. Resources we refer to in this episode: https://innovationmanagement.se/2020/10/27/what-are-the-differences-and-advantages-between-a-specialist-and-a-generalist/ https://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/generalists-vs-specialists/ https://www.brainspire.com/blog/specialist-versus-generalist-in-todays-businesses-an-evaluation Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking.   https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Audio Shed - https://audioshedpodcaststudio.co.uk Twitter: @audioshedstudio Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
With the recent announcement from The Government that so called ‘Freedom Day’ being set for June 21st is now being put back by 4 weeks, it means our plans have now had to change too. We are now planning on bringing back our in-person networking events, hopefully, in August. But of course, watch this space and subscribe to our newsletter and follow our socials for the latest news on that. It brings with it the renewed thoughts of the importance of being flexible and adaptable, as changes are likely to happen. Whatever we plan for, hope for it to happen, but expect things to change without much notice. Our hearts go out to the hospitality venues especially with all their plans for reopening fully in June, only for that now to be delayed by another month. There are stories in the press about venue owners having to throw out stock that won’t last, especially given fridges re being turned off to save costs. And now Matt Hancock the Health Secretary has also now said that people should restrict their movements in and out of Birmingham in order to curb the rise in the Delta variant of Covid19. Essential travel only. Birmingham’s Health Chief further clarifies things, which we talk about.  References referred to are below. https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/birmingham-health-boss-explains-new-20822514 https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/black-country/wolverhampton-nightclub-owner-bins-7k-20823906 Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Happy Content Co. https://happycontentco.com Twitter: @happycontentco Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
Business is gradually returning to some sense of normality; people are back at work, shops are open, and for the most part, we can more or less return to life as we kind of knew it. Many companies are transitioning their office buildings to accommodate hybrid working, allowing for people to continue to work from home indefinitely, and scaling down their premises to have spaces to meet and collaborate, but not necessarily every day. Companies such as HSBC, Lloyds, Standard Chartered are doing so, as are tech giants such as Twitter, Square and Spotify. It’s likely many more will follow suit over the coming months and years. We also have exciting news in the fact that we’re planning on bringing back our in-person networking events pretty soon! We’ll obviously keep everything monitored re. Covid and its problematic variants, but if all goes to plan - we will be back to some semblance of normal events in the near future. Have a listen to find out when! More info will be forthcoming on our mailshot and social channels, so stay tuned… Sign up to our mailshot here: https://brummies-networking.co.uk/mailing-list-sign-up/ Resources referred to in this episode: https://www.forbes.com/sites/jackkelly/2021/05/22/if-you-dont-want-to-return-to-the-office-or-stay-at-home-everyday-theres-now-a-third-attractive-way-to-work/?sh=35e775a83a49 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-57230018 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-57230017 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-57226155 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-57225856 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-57232728 Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Happy Content Co. https://happycontentco.com Twitter: @happycontentco Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
In this episode we talk to Jenna Lawson and Georgia Beech from Seamless OS, an outsourcing company based in Birmingham. Throughout this episode, they both highlight the benefits involved in starting your outsourcing journey, the amount of money you might save if you start outsourcing compared to hiring in-house teams of people, or indeed doing various tasks yourself. And for many small businesses, especially over the tumultuous last year, how outsourcing various tasks can help business owners stop working ‘in’ the business, and get back to focussing ‘on’ their business. Outsourcing can bring with it a lot more peace of mind for many a business owner, and if you’ve thought about going down this route, then this episode is most certainly for you. Jenna and Georgia offer some brilliant insights into their industry, giving you all the information you need to know. Seamless OS can be found online at the following locations: https://www.seamless-os.co.uk https://twitter.com/SeamlessOS https://www.linkedin.com/company/seamless-os/ Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Happy Content Co. https://happycontentco.com Twitter: @happycontentco Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
With more options to network online than ever, especially during Covid where it’s been of utmost importance, we discuss the latest iteration of platforms - Clubhouse; the audio networking platform that’s slowly taking the world by storm. Used as a platform that’s akin to Zoom, but without the cameras, people are using it in a multitude of ways; general group chat, Q&As with industry experts, panel discussions, the list goes on. And of course, as soon as something becomes popular, all the other platforms are now following suit! With LinkedIn, Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter now getting in on the action with audio chat functionality. Which platform will prevail? We’ll have to wait and see. But for now, there is no end of ways we can all network online in some way or another. Will all this continue well into post-pandemic days? Probably so - but possibly with platforms and users adopting it into various niches, mixing it in with in-person networking once again when it’s safe to do so. Fancy joining us on Twitter Spaces for an audio chat session sometime? Then follow our Brummies Networking twitter (@brummiesnet) for more details. Brought to you by Brummies Networking, the home of free, stripped-back business networking. https://brummies-networking.co.uk Brummies Networking on Twitter: @brummiesnet BrumPod on Twitter - @brumpod Produced by Happy Content Co. https://happycontentco.com Twitter: @happycontentco Music by Birocratic - birocratic.com Twitter: @birocratic BrumPod - The UK Small Business Podcast. BrumPod is designed for small businesses, because 2/3 of the hosts are small businesses! Our goal is to bring you topics that affect you as a fellow small business owner directly; everything from website tools and technology, changes in regulations, business networking tips, business growth. BrumPod Hosts: Richard Heathcote (Voice Over Artist) - https://www.richardheathcote.co.uk Iwan Thomas (Business Coach) - http://www.iwanthomasassociates.co.uk Jason Jones (Self Storage) - https://www.accessstorage.com
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