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Business Basics 101


March 3, 2022 / fbcadmin

Kerrie Sheaves
Foundational Business Consulting

Business Basics 101

Most businesses start with someone who has an idea and a specific skill and some previous ‘business’ experience that enables them to take the leap of faith to create a new enterprise.

And then after we’ve begun, we quickly realise there’s a thousand things we’re expected to know and understand that are well outside of our experience and knowledge base and have very little to do with those skills we have, that we thought were going to lead us to success.

Small business owners are often overwhelmed by the “basics” because those basics are many and varied and time consuming to master, in between trying to build, sell and deliver our “products”. So we focus on the things we find easy, and avoid the things we are uncomfortable with. But to be a successful business and be a successful business owner we need to develop our skills, and confidence in all areas of the business: Financial, Sales, Branding & Marketing, Risk, Operations, System & IT, People Management and Customer Service.

We can’t abdicate our ownership of our business, but we can delegate the execution of our strategy to experts, when we have confidence in our understanding of these fundamentals.

Businesses also evolve and change quickly over the first 5+ years, which adds extra pressure to the business leaders to quickly adapt and learn new ways of operating, new technologies and ways of delivering.

What’s your strategy to master your Businesses Basic’s?

There’s plenty of step by step guides on the web – “Starting your own business can be thrilling and exciting, but also daunting. If you are considering launching a startup, Forbes Magazines 35 invaluable tips covering all areas of business” is a good read to get you thinking.

These step by step guides give you a shopping list of activities to check off, but the trick isn’t just knowing what you need to do, it’s knowing how to do it effectively, efficiently and appropriate to you business and budget.

There are 4 key areas of your business that you need to understand the Business Basics of to have balanced and well rounded handle on your businesses operations.

Business Financials.

Personally I hate math’s, and it hates me too. So I can assure you that you don’t have to love math’s to be a good business owner, but you do need to take the time to understand and master the basics of Business financials. If you don’t there’s a good chance you won’t make it past the first few years of operating. Before you outsource (our abdicate) your bookkeeping you need to understand it and be able to direct your bookkeeper on what you need from them to support your business effectively. The Australian Tax Office has some good videos for small business owners to help you navigate the process.

These short videos discuss claiming deductions, GST, contractors, employing workers and more. You can follow small business operators as they get answers on registration, business structures, running a business from home, super, record keeping and other tax questions about their small business.

Business Model (Operations)

There’s no one way to run the operations of a business. Therefore seek guides and tips for running your  type of business model for your type of product/service offering otherwise you’ll become confused and wrapped up in doing things in your business that are won’t get you results or are unnecessary for your structure and model.

“A business model is a business’s core profit-making plan which defines the products or services it will sell, its target market, and any expected costs.

A business model is a company’s core strategy for profitably doing business.

Models generally include information like products or services the business plans to sell, target markets, and any anticipated expenses.

The two levers of a business model are pricing and costs.

As a business owner you should think like an Investor: When evaluating a business model as an investor, ask whether the idea makes sense and whether the numbers add up.” – Understanding Business Models

Your business operations also include mastering:

Business Branding, Marketing & Sales

As a business owner you need to master the basics of your businesses Marketing strategy. You’ve probably heard that before. But it’s not quite accurate, you actually need to begin by understanding 3 important elements of your businesses customer acquisition & retention strategy and the differences between them.


“Branding is important because not only is it what makes a memorable impression on consumers but it allows your customers and clients to know what to expect from your company. It is a way of distinguishing yourself from the competitors and clarifying what it is you offer that makes you the better choice. Your brand is built to be a true representation of who you are as a business, and how you wish to be perceived….Branding is absolutely critical to a business because of the overall impact it makes on your company. Branding can change how people perceive your brand, it can drive new business, and increase brand value – but it can also do the opposite if done wrongly or not at all.” BrandingMag 2015


Marketing can best be described as a program of tactics and campaigns driven through tools, templates and assets (such as content and advertising), to achieve measurable outcomes of awareness, and conversion or lead generation. It’s your hunting strategy, where you plan and set the bait in the traps and lure your customer to nibble on the breadcrumbs you’ve dropped for them. Eventually leading them to trust you enough to be ready for you to sell to them and close the deal. The bigger the fish (or price tag) the longer the lead time (or greater the number of touch points) to purchase.


Most small business owner are uncomfortable selling. That’s generally because they’ve never been trained to sell, and or they’ve experienced pushy sales people that they don’t want to emulate. Mastering sales as a business owner is essential, but it should also be natural and complement you and your business. Selling stories and solutions instead of products is a starting point. People buy from people and businesses they like, know and trust.

Business Resources and Skills (People)

Whether you’re a sole trader or an employer you’ll need to work with a range of people who have talents, time and skills you don’t have to help you grow and succeed. As a business grows people become it’s biggest asset and it’s biggest problem.

There are plenty of resources and tools available to guide you on rules and tips for employing both staff and contractors. We recommend using technology such as profiling tools before recruiting someone to a role to identify how your personnel need to be managed by you to get the best results.

As a leader you need to manage people through change, including how to plan change, communicate change and retain key staff and contractors. Accountability and communication is key to your success in this area of your business.

Remember, it’s your business not theirs; so they can’t have the same passion, and care about it as you will, no matter how loyal and committed they are. There is a mindset difference between a business owner and an employee that needs to be understood and accepted.


Are you avoiding areas of your business you haven’t mastered yet?

If you can sense that there’s key area of your business that you don’t feel confident in, it’s time to overcome that fear and ask yourself these questions.

  • What is one area of your business, or skills as a business owner/manager, that you feel you haven’t mastered yet?
  • Is there an area of your businesses operations that you feel you’re avoiding/allowing yourself to procrastinate on learning how to master, and why do you think you’re avoiding it?
  • What would make it easier for you to feel confident and capable in all the basic areas of your business operations? Time, Systems, Resources, Training, Money? Other…
  • What’s your approach to learning and mastering all the basics of running a successful business when there is no deadline?

You can help from Foundational Business in becoming a confident business owner, or find resources to help learn some of the skills you want to develop.

Call us to find out more today!


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