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Bin Trim Update & The Spectacle Spectacular

BIN TRIM UPDATE

With the Bin Trim Program now well established and having serviced over 200 businesses in the region in the last six months alone, one of the wonderful things about working in the Bin Trim team is how varied and interesting the work can be.

One area that is emerging as a special interest for me is Early Learning Centres and Childcare Centres. More often than not, the Educators working at these places are super excited about recycling and making improvements to their waste systems to align with their over-arching Sustainability Practices. It is such a privilege to see happy children learning and growing in an environment that fosters a love of environment and education through learning mediums such as worm farms and chickens!

But, as they say, a picture tells a thousand words so below are some images and a testimonial from some of our clients, along with the link to the SRBEC video featuring Carinya Childcare Centre. Fabulous stuff!
Click HERE to view the Bin Trim video from Carinya.

THE SPECTACLE DRIVE

In the name of all things recycling and therefore “Bin Trim”, I’d also like to promote the spectacle drive that we are running from the Queanbeyan SRBEC office in support of the Lions Club initiative. Please see our attached flyer and consider bringing in your old spectacles to be refurbished and given a new life, in a new country, on a new face! Woo hoo!

The program is called ‘Recycle for sight’, https://lionsclubs.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Recycle-for-Sight-FAQ-2.pdf

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8 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting a Business

Do you have what it takes to run your own business? Let’s find out.

Entrepreneurship is fun to talk about; it’s a lot harder to be about. The notion that you will be able to be your boss, create the hours and life you want and ultimately see riches beyond your wildest dreams draw people to start their own businesses. However, the reality is that starting your own business is one of the hardest things you can do. The fact that 8 out of 10 business fail within the first year shows two things: (i) creating a business is hard and (ii) entrepreneurship isn’t built for everyone.

So before you dive head first into entrepreneurship, ask yourself these questions.

1. Can you sell?

Here’s a reality of life — regardless of what you want to be in this world, at some point in time, you are going to have to sell.
Maybe it’s selling yourself to get a new job. Or selling something, like a used car or an old possession. Whatever it is, being a salesperson is a role we all play in life.

And whatever your new business does, it will involve you – the owner – needing to sell at some point. It could be a product or service to customers, or selling your business idea to an investor.

And yet, to many non-salespeople, the idea of selling can feel icky. We think we have to act fake, to be sleazy, to convince someone to do something they don’t want to do.

The reality is quite the opposite. The best salespeople actively work to solve a customer’s problem, and build lasting relationships through mutual trust and mutual benefit. Being a great salesperson isn’t about control and manipulation. It’s about having a genuine desire to help other people solve problems.

You need to feel reasonably comfortable at selling, and be reasonably good at it if you want to start and run your own business – regardless of what that business is. If you don’t think you can sell, then no problem – the art of being an effective sales person can be learned, and certainly improves with practice over time.

2. Are you willing to go without pay?

Or very little?

One of the popular misconceptions about having your own business is that it pays well. And though that may be true one day, it won’t be for a while.

Initially, your business probably won’t make any money, and when it starts to, you’ll want to reinvest profits into growth. If you are working alone on a business and you take all of the capital the business receives monthly, all you’ve done is created a nice job for yourself. Being an entrepreneur means reinvesting and focusing on growth.

3. Are you okay with investing your own money to get the business started?

Office space, employees, hosting fees, etc., they all cost money. Before you start anything, make sure you’re willing to put in some of your own capital into the business. If you’re going the investment route, many investors will want to know how much you’ve personally put into the company as a sign of commitment to your vision. If you’re not willing to invest in the company why should a VC?

4. Are you ready to be the accountant, lawyer, head of HR, customer service, etc.?

Your passion is what brought you to start a business. Your ability to adapt and take on new roles will be what keeps it alive. Starting a business means providing your service/product to customers. This will be what you’re passionate about and probably best at. It also means you’re going to have to wear several hats and some that don’t fit so comfortably. You will become the accountant, lawyer, head of HR and customer service, alongside providing your service/product to customers. Sure — you can employ or engage these roles later. But at the start, you’re going to need to deliver many of them yourself.

5. Can you fire someone?

Firing people sucks. There’s no other way to put it. However, it’s a part of running a business and a hurdle you must get over as your business grows. You need to be willing to have hard conversations with employees about their performance, and ultimately if you have to let them go.

6. Do you have patience?

Growing a company takes a long time and your patience will be tested. There is no get rich quick plan with entrepreneurship. It takes serious conviction and dedication to a long-term plan for your business and life.

“Timing, perseverance, and ten years of trying will eventually make you look like an overnight success.” – Biz Stone

7. Are you self-motivated?
Being accountable to other people at your previous job could have pressured you to hit milestones, get to work early and stay late, and give your best effort. Now you will have to be accountable to yourself.

If you’re not self-motivated, then entrepreneurship will be short-lived for you. Building the business has to be your fuel, getting you up early and keeping you there late to do what needs to be done to make the business a success.

8. Are you willing to let your social life take a hit?

If you like happy hours and movie nights, then entrepreneurship might not be for you. One of the truths about building a business is that it takes serious time. You will be confronted with decisions daily on things like, “Should I go meet my friends at the bar or do another few hours of prospecting?” Your friends may not understand and pressure you to come out; you will have to learn to say no and double down on your business.

If you think you’re ok with all of the above, then starting your own business might just work out for you. If you do decide to go down the path of business ownership, then I’ll let you in on two truths: (i) you’re signing up for one heck of a ride and (ii) it’s all worth it.

 

By Andrew Wales.

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Take A Bite of the Apple

Add your Business to Apple Maps

Have you noticed that little USB socket under the touch screen in your new car? Did you know you can plug your iPhone into that socket and then you can control your phone from the cars touch screen This is called Apple CarPlay. This is the only legal way to use your iPhone while driving. There might even be a voice command button on the steering wheel. Give it a go “ Hey Siri Driving directions to ………….”

Now if you have a client who’s business isn’t listed on Apple Maps  you could be lost. There are 2 ways to fix this. Either make sure the business is list on Yelp, as Apple uses this data for requests like “ Hey Siri, Driving direction to the nearest Sushi”. Siri will offer suggestion based on Yelp reviews.

Alternatively go to https://mapsconnect.apple.com/business/ and log in with your Apple ID and add your business. This is the better way of adding it with Apple upcoming rewrite of the app.

Drive Safe.  

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Business Excellence Awards An Outstanding Success!

Queanbeyan-Palerang Business Excellence Awards an outstanding success!

The 2018 Queanbeyan-Palerang Business Excellence Awards concluded with a gala presentation dinner on the 12th October at the Kangaroos Club Queanbeyan. This years awards received many nominations and we were pleased to see Braidwood & Bungendore businesses embrace the opportunity to nominate in the expanded local government region.

The Business Excellence Awards celebrate the excellence, success and innovation of Queanbeyan-Palerang’s businesses aiming to provide local businesses with an opportunity to receive the recognition they deserve, while networking with like-minded businesses and creating new business relationships.

This year there were 7 categories:

“Trade” category had 3 finalists;
Aluform Interior Supplies, Dawson Heating & Cooling & Dimension Gardenscape, with Aluform Interiors Supplies winning Best Trade Business .

“Start-Up” category had 3 finalists;
The Contentious Character, Corang Estate & Executive Event Solutions with The Contentious Character winning Best start-up business.

The winner of the “Inclusive” business category was The Big Green Cup.

“Retail” category had 4 finalists;
Provisions Grocery & Deli, Len Mutton & Co, Sandalwood Homewares, & Braidwood Bakery with Sandalwood Homewares winning Best retail business.

“Professional Services” category had 4 finalists;
Eyecare on Q, Elringtons Lawyers, Bom Funk Dance Studio, & Blooms The Chemist Karabar with Elringtons Lawyers winning Best Professional Services business.

The winner of the “Tourism & Hospitality” category was Mona Farm.

The winner of the “Light Industry & Manufacturing” category was Resort Trailers.

The overall winner of “Business of the Year” was then selected from the winners of each category with Aluform Interior Supplies deemed “Business of the Year”.

The awards also include a “Customer service Award” that is voted on by the community for the businesses that they believe provide the best customer service.
Again, there were many nominations for businesses across the Queanbeyan-Palerang region with three stand out winners; Home Hardware Karabar in Queanbeyan, R n R’s Diner in Bungendore & Braidwood Bakery.

The Business Excellence Awards committee would like to congratulate all businesses that nominated and were involved in this years awards.

 

Aluform Interior Supplies deemed "Business of the Year"

Aluform Interior Supplies deemed “Business of the Year”

To view more photos of the evening, head to the official Business Excellence Awards Facebook Page;

https://www.facebook.com/beawards/?ref=bookmarks

 

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Small Business Month & Biz Day Out Recap

October was Small Business Month in NSW and we met Business Owners from Wollongong, Queanbeyan, Bowral, Cooma and Goulburn when they attended SRBEC Biz Day Out events.

Taking a day out of working in their business to consider strategic level concepts to use on their business, owners and their staff were given the opportunity to explore:

– what’s working well in their business with guest speaker Jodie Cooper, and the impact having a Positive Psychology has, not only on themselves and their families, but their staff, customers, businesses and ultimately their way-of-life.

– ways of utilising the power of lateral thinking to take an idea to profit as Entrepreneurship and Innovation Masterclass presenter Randall Walker had them considering the difference between being self-employed and being a business owner.

– how an understanding of personality, culture, values and beliefs will help them communicate a clear message to staff, customers and stakeholders and create a winning outcome with Leadership and Communication coach and Masterclass presenter, Chris Edwards.

Participants had many opportunities to network with each other, the presenters and SRBEC advisors and to pitch their own business to the groups. The feedback we received was very positive with comments like ‘all 3 speakers were top notch and I’ll definitely be using some of their suggestions’.

Due to popular demand, one last encore of the Biz Day Out workshop, will be held in Canberra in the new year. Details to come, so stay tuned!

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SRBEC Voted Best Regional BEC in Australia.

The Southern Region Business Enterprise Centre (SRBEC) has been acknowledged & rewarded for its; innovation, quality of delivery & service to regional NSW at the National Peak bodies ”Business Enterprise Centres Australia” annual awards presented at the recent national conference held in Canberra.

Awarded the ”Best Regional Business Enterprise Centre in Australia” is recognition of its delivery of services to businesses & young people across the southern region of NSW. Board Chair Sue Whelan OAM & CEO Graham Baxter were present at the gala dinner to accept the award. In accepting the award, Chair Sue Whelan acknowledged the work done by Graham & his team at SRBEC in assisting businesses to innovate, to scale up & generate additional employment across the region. Sue also recognised the work SRBEC do in assisting young people to advance their educational & career prospects through the delivery of various government programs.

In outlining SRBEC history, its locations & current staffing, CEO Graham Baxter said he was extremely proud of the team & what we have achieved together, particularly over the past 5 years as we have experienced amazing growth during this period. The SRBEC was established in Queanbeyan in 1987 (31 years ago) by the community to promote business sustainability, to assist with employment generation & economic development of the region. Today, the Centre operates throughout the southern & northern region of NSW with outreach offices in; Canberra, Wollongong, Goulburn, Narooma, Bowral, Coffs Harbour, Armidale, Port Macquarie & of course in Queanbeyan (HQ) & has a team of 33 dedicated, experienced & professional staff ready to assist businesses & young people in regional NSW.

SRBEC services are extensive & diverse with a focus on skill development, business growth & enhancing employment opportunities. A key part of SRBEC product delivery has been the provision of an extensive business advisory & educational service to all businesses across the region. We service, existing, start-up & exiting businesses across all industry sectors with a team of 12 mobile advisors travelling throughout the region. Advice & assistance is offering on area areas of business management including; marketing & digital engagement, strategic business planning, workforce & financial management as well as a raft of other operational & compliance matters.

This award has spurred us on to achieve even greater success as we plan for 2019 Graham concluded.

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Bin Trim Update

Because of the SRBEC Bin Trim program, I have, in the last few months, been to Waste expos in Sydney and Melbourne.

For businesses, the usual equipment providers were on display which is most useful when managing and transporting waste at a macro level. There were smaller companies present, reflecting some emerging technologies such as turning cardboard into effective packaging, food containers for personal use in restaurants, technologies which measures material levels in a waste bin and Keep cups for coffee drinking and no waste.

Perhaps the biggest matter of interest at both forums was Government and Industry action around the circular economy concept, about which our July edition article has commented. This focus is reinforced by the news that a number of Asian countries, such as Vietnam, are also closing their borders to contaminated waste stream material imports, just as China has done.

Additionally, consistent with this interest by Government at these expos is that, on October 22nd, the NSW Government released its consultation launch of its draft Circular Economy Policy.  Follow the link below: https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/news/media-releases/2018/epamedia181022

What remains missing however in these large, waste-focussed forums is a discussion of how rural and regional community businesses might benefit from smart waste stream strategies and operations.

We know from the SRBEC Bin Trim program (web address) that in smaller sized communities, smaller balers are useful, good sized worm farms are valuable and smart organics composting is helpful. As in most such communities however there is a need to process film plastics, break down tyres, make use of wood or pallets to manufacture locally valuable products or process all organic materials and sell the resultant compost. These are business opportunities.

In our Bin Trim program work, we see companies across our region using:

*             smart milk portioning equipment

*             carboard and paper boxes to build a whole internal filing system

*             shrinking used milk containers by heating with steam

*             selling keep-cups for coffee drink sales

*             time to work closely with cleaners

*             clever waste bin labelling and signage; and

*             using organics for lots of local purposes

We have also come across business people who asked their suppliers to stop sending their goods in so much packaging. This is a very useful strategy. One example meant plastic packaging was replaced by a rubber band! Another example is that providers of food might be asked by the retail food industry if the vegetables and fruit they receive can be topped and tailed so the resultant cut-offs remain on farm for composting and to support good soil development.

 

Finally, the SRBEC has organised a forum on the Circular economy on November 20th 2018. Details on how to register can be found below, so come along and hear from international presenters from the European Union who will show how utilising the materials of the waste stream is an economic driver for a local regional community.

Register here;

https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/making-the-circular-economy-work-for-our-region-tickets-52451035459

 

Last but not least, Bin Trim is proud to announce that we are now on Facebook!
Visit us at; https://www.facebook.com/SRBEC-Bin-Trim-Program-1964899606908472/?ref=bookmarks

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Small Business Month – Biz Day Out

Small Business Month – Biz Day Out 

Small businesses are the heart of a community and are vital to the success, character and vibrancy of a town or city. After all this is where you – the owners live, where your children attend schools and where your customer base is. So, it is important to recognise your contributions to your community and acknowledge your successes.

October is Small Business Month, a time to celebrate the important role Small Business plays in local communities. Events are planned throughout the region to inspire you to start or grow your business, to provide practical information and ideas, and to connect you with like-minded people.

SRBEC has brought together an exciting program of speakers who will inspire, motivate and empower you to think outside your box and look at your business from a different perspective… and, it’s completely FREE to attend!

Over the last 12 years keynote speaker Jodie Cooper has provided business people with the tools of positive psychology to help them manage their stress more effectively and improve their confidence to succeed at work and flourish in their personal lives.

Regarded by many as the leading authority in conceptual and creative thinking, Edward de Bono states “Lateral thinking is about escaping from established ideas and perceptions, breaking out of the perpetual boxes we build for ourselves, and generating ideas of real moment…” The first Masterclass of the day is on Entrepreneurship and Innovation and will be delivered by Randall Walker, exploring how lateral thinking can take ideas to profit, help you make the transition from being self-employed to become a successful business owner and establish an innovative and sustainable competitive advantage for your business.

Our final Masterclass for the day will be presented by successful Leadership and Communication Coach, Chris Edwards. Chris has been involved in the business of communication since the early 1980s, transitioning from old-school manual techniques of communicating via traditional media, through the advent of computers and the impact they had on the business environment, to what we have now with instant access to everyone through social media. Chris will reveal insights on successful self-motivation and face-to-face communication.

There will be opportunities throughout the day for you to participate with 2-minute ‘Pitch your business’ spots available for a small number of local businesses. Sell your story and possibly find that one connection you have been looking for.

Don’t forget to bring your business cards – there is plenty of time for networking with like-minded people over lunch and during the breaks – we’ve created the time and the space for you to mix with business owners, our advisors and the presenters.

To top it off – you may be eligible for a fully-subsidised one-on-one session with one of our business advisors to talk turkey about your own business and your personal goals. You never know what you could pick up from the experience, knowledge and connections of our business advisors.

Biz Day Out will be from 10am – 4pm and in the following locations:

Wollongong                        Wednesday 03 October

Queanbeyan                      Thursday 11 October

Bowral                                  Tuesday 16 October

Cooma                                  Wednesday 24 October

Goulburn                             Wednesday 31 October

All Biz Day Out workshops are FREE! – Simply register here to attend https://srbec.com.au/events/.

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A Circular Economy

A sensible but different approach to sustainable business development — a circular economy!

The free SRBEC business waste stream program for local companies is now in full operation — details below.

Importantly, this waste program is a stepping stone to businesses becoming sustainable, which research suggests approximately 80% of customers are now asking of the businesses they buy things from. Most businesses also are now hopping on this bandwagon as they see such a change in consumer demand being crucial for their business future.

Even more significant for businesses in the short-term future is the work at Government and industry organisation level across Australia looking to introduce policies and practices around the idea of a ‘circular economy’. What is a circular economy and why is this relevant to your business?

Here is a diagram which shows what is meant by this term

Most advanced in Europe, the circular economy helps businesses and consumers make the transition to where resources are used in a more sustainable way. It is about “closing the loop” of product lifecycles through greater recycling and re-use, with benefits to the environment and the economy.

When in place a circular economy covers the full lifecycle of products: from production and consumption to waste management and the market for secondary raw materials.

The NSW EPA is soon to release a Draft paper discussing the idea in detail and seeking comment. Businesses need to be aware of, and planning for, the advent of this policy change.

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The 1 Page Business Plan

 

The 1 page Business Plan

Having worked with many business clients over the past 25 years & operated 5 businesses myself & I have no doubt that one of the biggest challenges faced by business owners is to ensure that their business is giving them the lifestyle they desired.

We all start off with high expectations & with great enthusiasm, but this quickly turns into a situation where you are too busy doing the day-to-day operational stuff and not focussing on the things that are most important to us – our personal goals!

Most businesses don’t have a Business Plan, which means that they don’t have strategies that will drive their business to achieve those personal goals that they wanted from the outset.

Business Plans don’t need to be complex, I believe that a simple one-page Business Plan can provide; clarity, strategies & direction for your business that will assist you in achieving those original goals you had for your business.

The one-page plan will explore; what you are really selling, what’s your unique selling proposition is, who your customers are, what your value proposition is, how you will market your products, how they will be measured & expected revenue. These are powerful points that will challenge your thinking & focus your business in a way that will drive success & lead to your goals being met — remember YOU are what is important in your business.

To get your hands on a one-page business plan simply contact SRBEC and ask us to send you one, better still; meet us for a chat and we can help you through it.

Give us a call on 02 6297 3121 or email admin@srbec.com.au and ask for the one-page Business Plan and start kicking your business goals.