Michelle Dewberry: failing to evolve your business is planning to fail

Gone are the days when we could all set our watches by the clatter of the letterbox. The reality now is that despite the rising cost of mail, the service that was once at the core of British industry is now a thing of the past. The recent postal strikes have cost UK businesses an estimated £1.25 billion, money that companies can ill afford during the country’s longest recession. Whether you are a sole trader, an SME or a company who employs hundreds of staff, each and every one of us has been affected by it.

Recession helps to push 300,000 into starting up a home-based business

The number of people starting their own business from a spare room or the garden shed has risen dramatically as the recession bites, reveals a research report – The 2009 Home Business Report released by Enterprise Nation and supported by BT – saw almost a third of a million people made the decision to go alone in the last 12 months, with 5,500 every week leaving behind commuting and the office for the chance to be their own boss.

Julie Meyer: Sugar isn’t on message

Following on from Lord Sugar’s comments on entrepreneurs, which has sparked a wave of media coverage, we spoke to Julie Meyer, a Dragon on Online BBC Dragons Den and CEO and Founder of Ariadne Capital to get her thoughts on the comments and also whether she thinks they were right or justified.

Adversity motivates UK’s successful entrepreneurs

A recently published survey claims that personal adversity is the most leading driving factor motivating the UK’s successful entrepreneurs.

Seven out of ten (69%) say they have been motivated by adversity including parental divorce, a car crash, cancer, and under- achieving at school. And the majority (56%) say determination is the most important characteristic for a successful entrepreneur, followed by passion (22%).

Do you see Angels?

It’s tough to be an entrepreneur out there in this current market, tougher than I’ve ever seen it before. Small business owners with stellar ideas for start-up ventures and innovators with life-changing inventions are being left dangling over the precipice of despair, abandoned by institutions that previously might have funded them, and having to watch their dreams crumble.

Could being grateful be making you weak?

“I guess I’m just lucky to have a job at the moment.”

This is a common response to the “how things are going at work?” question. With so many redundancies, many people feel grateful to still be in gainful employment and relieved that it’s their salary rather than savings that will feed the family for another month.

Can a ‘technophobe’ really make it as a successful entrepreneur?

Are there three people in your relationship – you, your partner and your Blackberry? From the bedroom to the gym and even on the beaches of foreign shores, a Blackberry or iPhone is often never far from an entrepreneur’s side.

Apple has sold 21.17 million iPhones worldwide and last week RIM, the Canadian technology firm behind the BlackBerry, has unveiled a new mass-market version of its popular phone.