About Robert McCaffrey

Robert is based in the UK and enjoys being involved in marketing and business development, with experience ranging from the IT services industry to social housing, and currently in B2B with a market leader. His interest and enthusiasm for small business arose after two years of digital marketing experience with a not-profit organisation in the UK, helping people start up in business, as well as providing mentoring and online business support advice. This period also made him enthusiastic to personally contribute in this area, and become involved in business forums.

Learning fast

The prevalence of start-up shows and “best business” awards should provide all the guidance, and warnings, that any small business needs to know. But there may still be a gap between the clarity of any start-up business model and what investors or partners need to know. For many the vision is so obvious it’s sometimes hard to translate into clear business language, and some high tech business is so “out there” that it can be hard to get a meaningful snapshot of the potential. Over here in the UK we have Dragons’ Den , a show where small businesses pitch for capital from would-be investors. Albeit that its entertainment, it can be an education as business people do their pitch, some convincing, some successful, some very poor presentation even though their idea or product may have been sound. Continue reading

I will drink to that…

Many business ideas are interchangeable from one place to another, and there is a healthy influx of new business ideas exchanged between the US and the UK. OK, admittedly it is often us coming over there, picking up ideas, and transplanting them in this country. But sometimes some developing business opportunity comes along that seems to be happening in both places at the same time. Over the past years there has been a huge increase in the demand for local beers and a proliferation of micro breweries. It seems to be one of those hot new things just happening right now. Continue reading

Now is the best time to start your business

There is always a discussion around what age is the best for starting up a business, and a recent article shows that for some it might be around 40. Another article looks at the argument of whether there is a link between age and business success, which really shows it is a moving scorecard of pluses and minuses.

In some ways it is academic, you can be 15 or 51 (or 61 or more) and if you have a business in mind the opportunity is still there for you. Here in the UK we have specific business support for young people (equally useful for those more mature), as well as the older generation . While some businesses have self-defining age limits or restrictions, I agree with the view in the first entrepreneur article that suggests “timing is everything”. Continue reading

Helping hands

You can expect that an entrepreneur has all the acumen and drive to succeed. But everyone benefits from guidance, help, training and insight. And for those entrepreneurs who have already succeeded, it is good to see them putting something back. Some recent developments must surely be welcome in helping more entrepreneurs get started or in developing further. The Hip-hop star Dr Dre along with music industry aficionado Jimmy Iovine have donated $70 million to the University of Southern California (USC). The USC newly created academy will provide a four year programme for undergraduates in areas of marketing, computer science and the arts. It will also include 1-1 mentoring and interaction with names from the entertainment industry. Continue reading

Inspired Reading

Can a book inspire your business? Recently I was reading an article about favourite business books and it got me to thinking that maybe there was mileage in the idea that a book can inspire and help your business. So what should be on the “must read” list for budding entrepreneurs? There are of course the classics, and those that get repeated as essential reading at business schools. Book titles like the “one-minute manager” by Ken Blanchard , and “Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey, as well as “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. Then there is the era of though leaders like Tom Peters “Re-imagine” and “Business @ The Speed Of Thought” from Bill Gates. Continue reading