Selling a business? Ready for a balancing act?

Selling a business is not an everyday event.  In fact it is not uncommon for it to be a once in a life time experience. Like selling a house? One way of describing a business sale is it’s a bit like selling a house – but on steroids.   Like a house sale, the buyer will…

Risk indicators for smaller businesses

When things go pear shaped in business people look back and often see that there were warning signs.  Hindsight is a wonderful thing! Especially in a smaller business. Smaller businesses v larger ones Small and medium sized businesses are very different to larger ones – here are a few examples: Bosses are likely to be more involved in…

Ethics & policies. On the tongue, are they on the lung?

I was struck by a recent headline, “55% of small firms don’t have an ethics policy”.   The article referred to a survey of ‘SMEs’  and I must say I was surprised that there are as many as 45% that actually have an ethics policy! Does the lack of an ethics policy mean that a business lacks…

Fraud should be seen as a business opportunity!!

‘It’s not going to happen to us’ From time to time a major fraud scandal hits the headlines, the latest one being Toshiba. Frauds in smaller businesses are less likely to receive public attention but they still happen. Common characteristics are a high degree of trust in staff and more informality than in a large company.…

No internal audit? It needs a business case!

A red flag  In a recent article Richard Chambers Global President and CEO of The Institute of Internal Auditors rightly described the lack of an internal audit function as a ‘red flag that should cause an investor’s antenna to go up’. In the UK, fully listed companies are not obliged to have an internal audit function,…