The Olympic Games allows top athletes the chance to compete against the best in the world and gives TV audiences the opportunity to watch non-stop sports for three weeks, but it’s usually an economic disaster for the city that hosts the event.
The fact that host cities are left with a few over-sized stadiums (so-called ‘legacy projects’) and mountainous debts once the 17-day sporting extravaganza is over shouldn’t come as a surprise.
Only the insanely optimistic continue to ignore decades of research that show hosting the Olympic Games rarely improves a city’s economy.
People might have laughed when twin brothers Alan and Gerry Keery first said they needed to raise £60,000 to open a cafe that would only offer breakfast cereals but thanks to the widespread publicity they garnered from their appeal on the crowdfunding site, Indiegogo, they were able to raise the funds they needed.
Although the funds didn’t come from the Indiegogo platform, the news of the Keery’s plan did attract the interest of outside investors who found it hugely palatable.
At an age when they should (or we just wish they would) hang up their leather trousers and retire disgracefully, more and more ancient rockers are embarking on yet another tour.
This year alone, the Rolling Stones (of course!), Madonna, The Who, Neil Young, Rod Stewart, Pearl Jam, Queen and even Ringo Starr are performing on stages around the globe. Given that many of them are nearing or way past grandparent-age, you might wonder why they’re still bothering so many years after their first taste of fame.
Do you dream of selling your business for a very tidy profit so you can retire and spend your days on luxury cruises or working on your golf handicap?
Well, without an exit plan, your dream may be just that, a dream that never comes to fruition.
Sell at the wrong time or without thinking about the impact of taxation, for example, and you really could be left with nothing to show for your years of hard work.
Given that the bankers are often ranked in the top 10 of the world’s most hated professions, the prospect of seducing your bank manager is probably not high on your bucket list.
It’s fair to say that you’ve probably never thought about doing it. But if you want your company to grow then it’s something you not only need to think about but act on.
Unfortunately, seduction, in this case, will rely almost entirely on the allure of your company’s numbers rather than your ability to deliver snappy one-liners,
I work with a team of 20 high calibre Finance Directors across the North of England.
Each of them is accredited by one of the major chartered Institutes and each of them used to work for successful companies as ‘traditional’ Finance Directors.
By traditional, I mean that each of them used to work as the sole Finance Director within a corporation, working Monday through to Friday (and weekends), usually from about 8am to 6pm.
The comedian Barry Cryer tells a story about a Finance Director walking down the street. The FD is approached by a homeless man. “Excuse me, mate” says the man “can you spare me a few quid, I haven’t eaten for two weeks”? “ I see” says the FD “And how does that compare with the same period last year”?
Of course, no FD would be that heartless but the story also hides a deeper truth – most of us think in fixed periods of time,
You might well know how to grow (i.e. do more of the things that are working for you, and do them better) but as a seasoned entrepreneur, you tend to instinctively want to hold back a bit…
It’s chiefly a case of paranoia…
Business owners tend to be more paranoid than they let on. They don’t like to be regarded as paranoid so they often hide it.
What are the causes of success?
Colin Mills – Founder & CEO, The FD Centre Limited (www.thefdcentre.co.uk)
So, to be a highly effective FD in your business, you have to be up to date on all the latest accounting standards, be really up to speed on the latest developments in tax legislation and spend long hours in your office reviewing reconciliations and signing off VAT returns. That’s right isn’t it?
Our experience over ten years suggests that highly effective FDs need a rather different set of skills to be effective and “make a difference” in the businesses they work for.