Flight School: Give Your Business Wings!

The BizSmart Flight School is made up of 34 modules that will take you through a comprehensive programme to improve your business. The course takes 12 to 14 months to complete and covers eight key areas:

 

Strategy, Leadership, Marketing, Sales, Finances, Team, Operations and Stability.

 

Once you’ve completed the course you’ll graduate from Flight School and get your business wings! More importantly, it will help you re-energise your business, gaining increased control and direction. Along the way you’ll have developed a comprehensive three-year plan for your business and a one-year operational plan that you’ll actually use.

 

The first eight modules are delivered at weekly intervals, followed by the remaining 26 modules once a fortnight. Each module involves a one-hour phone call with your own dedicated business advisor and there will be some preparation work for you to do along with action points following the call.

 

The advantage of working in this way is that you don’t need whole days away from your business for training. Flight School is delivered in manageable chunks so that you can easily continue running your business alongside the programme.

 

Flight School Modules

 

Strategy

1.Understand the Fundamentals of Strategy

This module helps you get to grips with the two fundamental strategies driving your ability to make sustainable returns in your business. You’ll gain a better understanding of positioning and how your relative position impacts on your business. We’ll look at the eight core business areas and assess how you fare in these areas and help you recognise how you can monitor and improve your business.

2.Core Ideology

This module explains the importance of having a strong set of core values and the power of having a core purpose in your business. Once you've developed and articulated your core values, you’ll be able to develop a meaningful core purpose statement – something that really means something to you, not just words on a bit of paper. You will also understand how to use these core values through everything your business does.

3.Envisioned Future

This module explains the difference between Core Ideology and Envisioned Future, helping you to develop a description of how you want your business to look in the medium-term – typically the next 10-15 years. Once you've done this you will test the validity of your description and then go on to articulate and commit to a stretch goal to push your business forward.

4.Growth and Focus

This module teaches you the importance of focus and explains how to use the Hedgehog Concept. We’ll help you to develop your own Hedgehog model and identify your profit engine. Invariably this provides real clarity and focus on what will drive your profits. You’ll understand and identify potential routes for growth and their relative risk levels, and the key opportunities for growth, both top and bottom line.

5.Aligned SWOT

This module will enable you to get to grips with the aligned SWOT analysis vs. the standard SWOT analysis. The aligned SWOT becomes a really powerful and useful framework –not just something that you fill out in a business plan! You’ll complete an aligned SWOT analysis for your business and begin to identify potential tactics to build on your strengths and mitigate weaknesses.

6.SmartWeb

This module will consolidate everything you've learnt so far and pull together all the valuable work you've done on your business. You’ll use our SmartWeb tool to develop a comprehensive and consistent three-year plan. Once this is in place you’ll identify critical paths for the next twelve months so that you know exactly what needs to happen this year to fulfill your three-year plan.

7.Profit and Loss

This module will help you to put together a robust financial model and you’ll get to grips with the key drivers of profit in your business. This will also help you to ‘sanity check ‘ the business model – identifying potential areas of financial weakness We will also cover the general principles of business valuation, and you’ll develop a preliminary valuation of your business based on the plan.

8.SMART Action Plan

This module will explain the importance of SMART objectives and actions. You’ll grasp the importance of monitoring your progress against critical paths and then use your critical paths to develop your action plan for the next twelve months. This module completes the Strategy modules and the final step is committing to your operational plan.

9.Lead Generation Process

In this module you’ll build on the marketing tactics and develop a targeted lead generation process. You’ll map out every element of the process and identify the key requirements and materials needed at each step. You’ll identify key performance indicators for your lead generation activities and develop a lead generation calendar.

Marketing/ Lead Generation

10.Personal Leadership

This module will explain how the “7 Habits”, including time management are key to becoming a more effective leader and manager. As well as becoming more effective yourself, you’ll learn how to help others become better leaders and managers and the different strategies and tactics required. You’ll understand the importance of taking responsibility and moving from being dependent on others to interdependent and what this really means. All of this will help you begin to gain back control over your business.

11.Your Value Proposition

This module will outline why the value proposition is the starting point for all of your marketing activities, and cover the key components of a value proposition. You’ll understand the importance of a clear value proposition for each of your products or services and begin to develop a value proposition for at least one of your key service or product lines.

12.Marketing Tactics

In this module you’ll discover a simple matrix that will assist you in planning your marketing tactics. You’ll determine the key tactics needed to enable you to deliver on your planned goals. Using this matrix will ensure you have considered new and repeat customers as well as hunting and farming activities.

13.Pulling the Marketing Plan Together

This module brings all of the marketing modules together to ensure you have processes for keeping in touch with existing customers and rekindling lapsed customers, in addition to farming activities for new and repeat customers. You’ll develop a phased activity plan with key performance indicators and you’ll also outline costs and therefore a marketing budget.

Leadership

14.Understanding People Styles

This module will demonstrate that different people have different yet equally valid communication and working styles. You’ll begin to understand your own personality style, and how you come across to others. We’ll give you tips on how to adapt your style to work better with others and you’ll gain an understanding of how the different styles interact. This will help you in building effective teams of people that can work together productively.

15.Power of Small Change

This module will clarify that business is not all about big ideas and big change, but that effective businesses understand the importance of regular small changes. You’ll see the impact that making a number of small changes can have on your bottom line and gain an understanding of what to focus on to make ‘small change’. You’ll identify preliminary tactics for driving change in your business and start to develop some metrics for change.

16.Keeping on Track

This module helps you to build on the power of small change and start to recognise the importance of regular business reviews. You’ll develop an agenda for a monthly review of your business that enables you to undertake a simple regular assessment of where you are each month. You’ll also develop some preliminary key performance indicators for your business.

Sales/ Lead Conversion

17.Sales Conversion Plan

This module covers the importance of having a sales process, which you’ll use to guide your prospects rather than be led by them. You’ll develop sales processes for key enquiry types, including a pre-qualification step. The key requirements and materials needed at each stage in the sales process will be identified, along with key performance indicators for your sales processes. We’ll also identify if there are any sales training requirements for you or your staff and highlight any opportunities for this.

18.Pipeline Log

In this module you’ll look at the importance of keeping track of your sales pipeline so that you can keep an eye on what is coming and avoid ‘feast and famine’. We’ll review ways to quantify the potential value of a new opportunity and the likelihood of it progressing along your pipeline. You’ll develop your own sales pipeline tool and identify the key performance indicators associated with your pipeline.

Finances

19.Cashflow Forecast

This module will help you to understand the difference between profit and cash flow. We’ll look at the role of the cash flow forecast and identify the key components required for a robust cash flow model. We’ll also build on the sales pipeline log to help you develop a cash flow forecast.

20.Sales and Cashflow Model

In this module we’ll review the financial model built in module 7 and link it with the cash flow forecast to ensure they’re aligned. We’ll work on understanding the key drivers and financial terminology, including the impact of drivers such as debtor days on cash flow. We’ll also identify key performance indicators. This module will help to deepen your understanding of the power of small change.

21.Margin Improvement

In this module you’ll take a deeper look at gross and net margins and we’ll continue to emphasise the power of small change. We’ll consider ways to improve margins, and help you to develop priority actions and targets focused on margin improvement. We’ll also identify key performance indicators for margin improvement.

22.Cashflow Management

This module focuses on the importance of managing debtor days and creditor days in particular. You’ll gain an understanding of the importance of a clear process, enabling you to review your current process and debtor days. You’ll then develop your own debtor day process with targets and key performance indicators.

Team

23.People Planning

This module will give you the ability to assess your current skills base versus your actual requirements. You’ll identify the skill and role requirements needed to meet your three-year plan and begin to put in place strategies for increasing your chances of finding people when you need them.

24.Recruitment and Interviewing

In this module you’ll review the options for recruiting in line with your plan. You’ll understand how third party recruiters work and look at how you can get them working for you. You’ll learn how to improve your chances of choosing the right candidates and also improve your chances of those candidates choosing you.

25.Onboarding

This module will help you to understand how to help a new employee get up to speed quickly. You’ll develop an onboarding process and ensure you have the right documentation in place from the start.

26.Building Effective Teams

This module enables you to review personality types and consider profiling. You’ll assess your current team and identify any potential personality ‘gaps’. We’ll also look at how to encourage the behaviours you want to see in your team. You’ll build an effective performance review process and learn how to create an efficient operation.

Client Fulfillment/ Operations

27.Key Processes for Scalability

This module will help you to determine your business critical processes. You’ll prioritise these processes according to impact on the business and learn how to map the processes out, starting with the top priority. This will enable you to make improvements, test the improvements and then document the results.

28.Exceeding Customer Expectations

This module emphasises the importance of customer feedback. You’ll learn how to conduct effective methods of collecting customer feedback on an ongoing basis. You’ll develop a quality approach and identify key performance indicators for ‘Quality’ so that you can keep track of whether you’re meeting your customers’ needs.

29.Customer Management

This module will help you to begin to manage your customers. You’ll discover how and why you should ‘rate’ your customers – this will help you to review your current customers. You’ll then be able to develop strategies for managing customers and improving profitability.

30.Business Dashboard

This module will help to consolidate the key performance indicators you’ve identified so far. You’ll develop scorecards for all key areas of your business, which will act as a dashboard and enable you to keep track of all of your KPIs.

31.Productisation

This module will help you avoid re-inventing the wheel. You’ll learn how to turn a service business into a ‘products’ business. Discover how to value engineer your product and develop KPIs for productisation.

Stability

32.Business Protection

In this module you’ll look at whether you have adequate business protection. You’ll understand your intellectual property (IP), learn how to put measures in place to protect your IP and understand trademarks and patents copyright.

33.Contingency Planning

This module will help you to identify areas of risk for your business and areas of over reliance. You’ll understand appropriate protection measures you can put in place, and develop a succession plan for key roles. You’ll also work on developing staff retention strategies for your business.

34.Ironing out Peaks and Troughs in Sales

This module will help you to identify areas of instability in revenues for reasons including seasonality and lack of repeat business. You’ll develop strategies to address any instability and develop stability KPIs.

1.Microsoft Excel Tips

Microsoft Excel is a Rolls-Royce spreadsheet application! If you want to increase your confidence with this most versatile of business tools, then this webinar is for you! Developed to make a huge impact and move you from the basics to beyond! • Easy spreadsheet management • Building formulas with confidence • Managing Lists of data • What are Pivot tables?

2.Why, should YOU measure your most valuable resource... TIME?

Understanding simple time analytics for your business. Would you like to know where your time goes and work out the true value of what you’ve been doing. • why you should measure your time? • how to measure your time • managing your team's time • the secret ingredient... analysis • conducting a retrospective • time vampires

3.Financial Support - Finding the right solutions to business funding needs.

This webinar will unlock the real reasons why banks say they are lending but the perception is that they are not! We will share valuable insights into what is preventing your bank from lending to you. You will learn the important and practical hints and tips on how to improve your chances of getting finance and also set some realistic expectations about what is achievable.

4.Invoice finance an illusion of simplicity

This webinar is a must for anyone considering using invoice finance or any company with an overdraft because at some point the bank will want to consider invoice finance. • What is invoice finance • Why banks prefer it to overdraft • Why it's not a simple product • Types of facility • The cost • Why the promises sometime don't live up to the reality • When it works best and when it won't work at all.

5.The Cloud: what is it and is it right for you?

This webinar will give you an in site into “Cloud Solutions” and asks the question – Is the cloud right for me? Are you thinking of moving your IT services to the Cloud? then you need to know more information on the topics covered below. Topics: • What is the Cloud • Cloud Offerings • Offsite Backup • Office 365 • Security • Hybrid Solutions

6.Bringing predictability to the sales process

In this webinar session, we will look at one of the key elements required to build a repeatable process and avoid the trap of the “buyer/seller” dance. Plus taking you through the “pre-call plan” or the “pre-meeting plan”. • Are you “too busy being busy”, to get to the next level of success? • Spending time doing proposals and quotations without being sure of which ones will close? • Frustrated about how long it takes to win new business? • Annoyed at having to cut margin to win business?

7.Employers - do you understand the new Pension Reform rules?

• provide employers with an understanding of the pension reform • equip employers with the knowledge of determining which pay elements are included or excluded for qualifying earnings • inform employers about their duties for each category of worker • provide you with the information of how this will affect your company

8.Exporting and International trade for beginners

Webinar – This webinar aims to ‘cut through the complications’ and simply take you through every stage of the international trade process. This session aims to: • Finding and researching markets and customers. • Responding to enquiries from overseas and converting them to profitable sales. • Export terms and documentation. • Getting your goods or services to the customers. • Options for getting paid. • Sales and marketing

9.Export Sales and Marketing - Multi Channel 'USP's and routes to market

The world is changing rapidly and now more potential customers than ever, are more accessible and more ‘routes to market’ possible’. This session aims to: Open minds and create ideas on multi-channel marketing and sales, that can help your business. Show how changing and adapting ‘USP’s helps to access different customer sectors and customers themselves. Provide strategic sales and marketing insight and guidance to help your business.

10.Getting the most out of your staff

Lets discuss what motivates your staff (its not all about money) • Explaining the importance of hearing your staff (Not just listening to them) • Show the importance of treating staff as indviduals.

11.Wicked Word

Where would you be without Word for Windows? But are you using it to its full potential? We often get comments like, “I wish I’d known that years ago!” We’ll tell you lots of things that you probably don’t know on this great webinar.

12.Bridging The Brand Canyon

How to gain better brand awareness and grow your business. • What is brand? • The core purpose of marketing? • The power of why • Why do/don't people buy from you? • The 5c's

13.Joining The Digital Dots .

How to use digital, mobile and social tools to enhance your brand, retain customers and grow your business.

14.Effective Leadership Habits

• Start the journey towards becoming a more effective leader • Understand how important these habits are to everything you do with BizSmart and beyond! • Understand how to help others become more effective leaders and managers • Understand the difference between leadership and management/ strategy and tactics • Understand the importance of taking responsibility and what this really means • Understand that we need to grow from being dependent on others to interdependency and what this means! • Begin to gain back control over your business!

15.Lean Working

Understand the principles of cutting out waste in your processes. Based on the principles of Lean Management, this is a practical session to help you and your teams to become more efficient - minimising the time either overworking/ overdelivering or wasting time putting things right

16.Using Social Media effectively for your business.

Is Social Media appropriate for your business? What are the key platforms and what might be of most relevance to you? How can you put together the beginnings of a social media strategy that works for your business?

17.Remote working: Do you really need an office?

Remote working: Do you really need an office? A breakdown of how to run a successful remote working company. • What is 'remote' working? • Benefits, Opportunities and Challenges. • Tools of the trade

18.The Internet of Things:

A look at how network enabled devices, such as wearable technology and household appliances, are being developed to create the 'Internet of Things'. Work smarter: how to be much more productive in far less time using agile practices.

19.EFLGS - Enterprise Finance Loan Guarantee Scheme

What is EFLGS, Who is it for and how will it benefit me. What will it cost and why don’t banks like it.

20.Telemarketing: Insourcing vs Outsourcing

A look at the pro's and cons of telemarketing and whether an insourcing or outsourcing aooroach is right for your business. • Why should we do telemarketing at all? • Benefits of insourcing – why running cold calling activity internally is the right approach for your business • Benefits of outsourcing – the alternative approach • What is the right approach for me? • How to make both of them work?

21.IT Health Check

Question and Answer Session Send us your 'hot' IT issues in advance of the session and we''ll address as many as we can!

22.Why have a system for sales

What is a sales system? Why do you need to have one? How do you go about developing one?

23.Creating the perfect Image -

This will cover the importance of having the absolute best image that you can possibly have to promote your business, including lighting techniques, composition, depth of field & image content.  Websites, facebook,  linked in all require visual interaction so having the image that represents your business correctly is essential. "• What makes a good image • The importance of controlling light when taking images • Composition & creating the correct depth of field can give your photographs the edge • Expression along with preparation are key components in achieving a good image"

24.What makes a good image -

A subjective area, but with lots of hints & tips on how to achieve those wow images I can help you along with easy to understand techniques & guidelines to achieve the results you see I magazines & billboards.

25.Pension changes coming into legislation from April 2015 are you ready for them?

This webinar is a must for anyone who saves in a pension as the changes affect everyone o What has changed at retirement o How are pensions treated on death o How can I structure my retirement income o Why this presents a great opportunity for pension savers o Why it is important to get the right advice

26.The dark underworld of the Printing Industry

This session will explain to you about the subcontract world involved in the Printing trade. • The benefits of using trade • Speciailists via a broker as apposed to a general printer • Understanding the gaps between designers and factories.

27.Optimising a mobile workforce?

The rise of the mobile workforce has been unprecedented in recent years, and the predictions for the future of this industry are staggering. 65% of businesses in the UK expect 30% more of their employees (the equivalent of around 7 million people in Britain) will become mobile workers in the next two years. Almost three quarters of British companies are overhauling their communications infrastructure, updating their systems to take advantage of new technological advancements, and three in five employees say they no longer need a set workplace or office to feel productive in their job.

28.The Service you get isn’t the service you give.

According to Bloomberg, 8 out of 10 entrepreneurs who start businesses fail within the first 18 months. A whopping 80% crash and burn, but why? Revenue? = What goes out is more than what comes in.. You can talk about sales funnels, design a business case, have the best product and the best customer but if you can’t manage your finances then you could be doomed. In this session I will be talking about a few key strategies that I use to help manage my business costs.

29.The Games People Play

An introduction to the emotional contract • Defining passive/aggressive and assertiveness • Show how these behaviours are displayed in the workplace • Support you to manage these behaviours."

30.Getting the most out of your staff

When you first started your business, employing people may have been the last thing on your mind, but as you business grows and you need a helping hand how do you ensure that you are managing your staff and not them managing you? • The emotional versus the written contract • Setting boundaries • Ensuring they know their role • What really makes your staff tick? • Nipping issues in the bud • Giving praise where praise is due.

31.An introduction to grant funded schemes

This session aims to: • Help business owners to recognise European funding eligibility criteria • Provide an understanding of the application process • Give an overview of the main grant schemes available

32.Never accept the first answer

A look at how the first question we ask someone rarely gives us the truth and how further effective questioning techniques can provide us with real answers.

33.Popping Powerpoint Presentations

Ever come out of a presentation thinking, "Facts were there but it didn't engage me…?" Why didn't it hit the right spot? Do you want to know how to do it better? We have just the webinar for you, designed to make a huge impact on your work! • Do's and don'ts • Creating great slides & hand-outs • Slide Masters • Running presentations - Animations?

34.Protecting your business

While most business people understand the concept of risk and have contingency plans to protect profits if sales fall in the future, most businesses simply do not appreciate the consequences of leaving the company and its key personnel unprotected against an untimely death or disability. This webinar explains potential consequences of not contingency planning and what can be done should a catastrophic event occur, to keep your business in business.

35.Protecting your business’s most vital assets

For most businesses, the human assets – the staff they employ – are more important than the physical ones. What use is high technology without the experience and expertise that is needed to put it to work? And human assets can often be much more difficult, and indeed expensive, to replace.

36.Sparkling Spreadsheets

Microsoft Excel is the rolls-Royce spreadsheet application! If you want to increase your confidence with this most versatile of business tools, then this course is for you! Developed to make a huge impact and move you from the basics. • Managing lists of data • Easy spreadsheet management • Building formulas with confidence

37.How to Regain Business Direction and Focus

If you want to regain direction and focus – the starting point has to be to make sure you have a strong set of core values and a powerful core purpose

38.Why Wow-factor will boost the effectiveness of everything you do online and where to find it.

This session is a must for anyone who feels their website, social media activities, marketing or presentations aren’t getting people bouncing up and down with excitement. It’s all about creating a positive user experience because people will love you for it and when they love you they will want to buy from you.

39.Magical Micros

This session is for the accomplished users of MS Excel looking to raise their knowledge to a higher level. Consider how many times you have wondered if the program can do this or that? Exel can really be made to fly with a little know how!

40.Your website: what isn’t it telling you?

Webinar – this webinar will unlock the real power of Web/IP tracking in the business-2-business world. What do you do if a company lands on your website, browses through your content and then leave without contacting you? Is this prime prospect lost for good...?