Business Brain Food

We’ve all heard horror stories of successful businesses who get completely taken down by legal action. If you take the advice of our guest this week, you can make sure your business isn’t one of them. Joanna Oakey will go through all of the main pitfalls your business may be exposed to, and we promise; there isn’t a hint of legal jargon! This is all to-the-point advice that any business owner can benefit from hearing.

Joanna is a commercial lawyer with a passion for business, having worked across a large portfolio of sales, mergers, acquisitions, commercial law and intellectual property. She has been a keynote speaker in events across Australia, and we like her even more because she hosts her own podcast!

See below for some great legal tips from Joanna:

**  If your business is growing quickly then you are probably the most exposed to a legal challenge.

**  Not having a registered trademark is very dangerous. You are exposed to attack from two different angles. Firstly, an organisation with a brand similar to yours could bring a case; and secondly you are open to other competitors sprouting up and copying your brand.

**  With intellectual property the only thing you can protect is the expression of the idea, not the idea itself.

**  Don’t forget your clients. Have a strong client engagement agreement to cover yourself.

**  You should only think of your terms and conditions as something to fall back on when your legal team fights another legal team. You should really do what you can to avoid this scenario, so make sure you are explicit with the most important parts of your Ts & Cs during the buyer journey.

**  Make sure you protect yourself against unfair dismissal claims. Are your employee agreements what they should be?

**  The key is to have all of these things in place BEFORE you need them.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  How litigation really works

**  The definition of intellectual property

**  The definition of copyright

**  The definition of patents

**  How to apply for a trademark

**  Is clicking a box accepting terms & conditions legally binding?

**  What protection an employee probationary period actually offers

**  How to restrain ex-employees

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Free business advice and tools from Ben: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  If any listeners have a business and want to know more about their legal coverage, you can have a FREE 40-minute consultation with Joanna. Simply go to http://www.aspectlegal.com.au/contact and type in “I want my free 40-minute session, I’m a Business Brain Food listener" in the enquiry field.

**  Joanna’s Podcast is called Talking Law. If you type that into itunes or google you will easily be able to find it and subscribe.

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

Remember what Joanne kept going back to: have your legal frameworks in place BEFORE you have a problem. You could save yourself a lot of time, money, and maybe even your entire business!

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 


What a tremendous character we have on the show this week. It really is difficult to know where to start with Akbar Sheikh. From being homeless and taking refuge in a San Francisco utility cupboard, he’s gone on to conquer the world of business, and even better, he’s now giving something back.

His epiphany came on a day when his network marketing business brought in $25,000, but he realised he felt so much more enjoyment from the free consultancy he’d given a not-for-profit business on that same day. He now works with a charity in Africa that cures children from blindness, as well as a charity in San Francisco that provides mattresses for the homeless.

See below for some Akbar’s amazing tips on life and marketing:

**  Most people fail at the fundamentals. They’re always looking for the next big thing, but if you have a foundation you can scale to seven figures.

**  Stop what you’re doing if you hate it. Remember Einstein’s famous quote: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

**  You won’t have a successful business unless you stop your bad life habits.

**  Think about scaling and growth every day. Don’t stand still or you will become bitter.

**  Do organic marketing before paid marketing - it helps prove the concept.

**  Make your content regular - keep feeding the machine.

**  It isn’t difficult to create content - it’s just documenting your everyday reality.

**  You are who you spend your time with. Hang with the right people and you will take the right path.

**  Find a ‘why’ in life that makes you cry. Motivation becomes completely automatic once you do.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  The definition of a funnel

**  The ethical 7 principles of sales

**  The tools you need for a successful online business

**  The value of organic marketing

**  How to make producing content easy

**  How Akbar got 8 million in traffic without paying for any online advertising

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Free business advice and tools from Ben: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Get Akbar’s international bestselling book (normally $47) for FREE here

**  Akbar’s Facebook group: The 2 comma club

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

Call to action:

This is an unarguably insightful quote from a man who’s lived one heck of a life: “As business people we are artists. We need a clean and clear canvas in our mind.”

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000


Every business needs referrals, but how do you go about getting them? Do you offer people incentives? Do you even ask for them at all? All will be revealed by our guest this week…

Stacey Brown is an absolute referrals guru. Having worked in sales & marketing and run two of her own businesses, she now has a full-time business coaching people in how to best achieve referrals, and guess what: she gets a good portion of her own business through referrals too!

See below for some great tips from Stacey:

**  Never ask for a referral. Your referrals-gathering system is more likely to be sustainable in the long term if it doesn’t rely on you having to continually raise yourself to ask for them.

**  However good your product/service might be, your business will never work unless you can attract new clients.

**  Think of every client as a potential referrer. You must connect with them at a human level while you are delivering their service.

**  Be memorable and meaningful. There are certain parts of the referral process you can automate but you must drive it with genuine meaning from the top.

**  Have 3 business development plans. A prospecting plan, a marketing plan, a referral plan.

**  Remember if you haven’t spoken to someone for a while you need to tread carefully with your opening language.

**  Make sure you write a hand-written thankyou note for every referral you receive.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  How to attract referrals without selling your soul

**  How good companies fail to get referrals

**  How to deliver a truly personalised client-management experience

**  The 5-step referral generation plan

**  How to understand your referral sources

**  How to speak to a client who is giving you poor referrals

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s free business planning template: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Stacey’s special freebie for BBF listeners, “The Seven Deadly Sins of Generating Referrals” can be downloaded here

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

According to Stacey, the average business can hope to attract 30% of their new business from referrals if they get their process right. Just think of how much money you could make here!

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 

Direct download: BBF163_How_to_get_more_referras_without_asking_with_Stacey_Brown_Randall.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

Being an expert in your field doesn’t mean you’re an expert in conveying your message. Listen up folks – we’re talking to a bona fide expert on the matter who might well make you an expert by the end of it!

Carolyn Crawford has worked for over a decade helping people refine their presentation/communication skills. She’s dealt with everyone from high-level CEOs to small SMEs across any industry you could think of, so is a great person to listen to on the matter.

See below for some great tips from Carolyn:

**  Confidence is infectious. If you project confidence then your audience will feel confident in you.

**  Presenting isn’t just to a group. In everyday business, you’re probably 'presenting' one-on-one every day.

**  Don’t ever say “it’s just not me”. If you’re capable of being in the workplace then you’re capable of presenting. It’s just a question of finding your natural style.

**  Always be clear on your outcome: what do you want to achieve out of any conversation? Without this you’ll get lost in the detail of broad topics.

**  Don’t contrive your style. Just because someone else has certain mannerisms doesn’t mean you should copy them.

**  Never use grammatically correct bullet points. If it’s grammatically correct as a bullet point then it shouldn’t be a bullet point - it should either be spoken or properly written.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  How to avoid death by Powerpoint

**  Why presenting is important

**  How to use visual aids

**  How to find your own style

**  The rules of simplicity

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s free business planning template: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Carolyn’s site with Presenting To The Max graphical guide: http://www.f2fcommunications.com.au

**  Carolyn’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/f2fcomms/

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

Most of your life is communicating, but how much of your education has been about communication? Most of us will need to sharpen up!

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 

Direct download: BBF162_Presenting_to_the_max_with_Carolyn_Crawford.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

If you’ve got prospective customers then we guarantee this interview will help you get more conversions. Doren Aldana has done a lot in the corporate world and has two hugely successful businesses behind him. We’re going to focus on his Testimonial Engine business: a tool to help companies gather and manage online client reviews.

Every business can benefit from this, so listen up!!

See below for some great stats and some great advice from Doren:

**  73% of consumers say that positive customer reviews make them trust a business more.

**  79% of customers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation from a friend or family member.

**  Consumer reviews are trusted 12 times more than a company’s own marketing material.

**  7/10 customers come back to your business if they have a problem and you resolve it quickly. Make sure you have a mechanism in place to enable you to quickly nip problems in the bud.

**  Reviews work for you 24/7. Unlike referrals, you don’t have to tend to them.

**  Have a system to make it easy for people to leave reviews, i.e. allow them to do it without needing to create an account with yelp, google etc.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  The value of good reviews

**  How to find those good reviews

**  Review-capture pages

**  The inner workings of mytestimonialengine.com

**  The importance of video and audio reviews

**  How to turn a raving fan into a company evangelist

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s free business planning template: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Doren’s special offer for BBF listeners: http://www.mytestimonialengine.com/brainfood

**  Doren’s mortgage coaching business: http://www.mortgagemarketingcoach.com

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood 

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

Even if you don’t take up Doren’s great offer for his testimonial system, you should now stop and think about how you handle your feedback. Are you just sitting and hoping for the best? Or are you proactively turning feedback into a money-making machine?

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 

Direct download: BBF161_with_Doren_Aldana.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

We’ve gone way off-piste with this week’s episode, but we guarantee this conversation will make you think. Our guest Jeffrey Slayter is a lifelong entrepreneur, but only truly found himself when he went away to the jungles of Peru and took part in an ayahuasca ceremony.

Jeffrey’s profession is now to advise entrepreneurs on how to change their habits and open their minds. He’s spoken to over 3 million people and has shared a stage with the likes of Richard Branson, Brian Tracey, Dr John D. Martini, Tim Ferris and Tony Robbins. The chances are, Jeffrey has worked with someone you’ve looked up to.

See below for some of Jeffrey’s holistic advice:

**  When you think you’re on top of the world and doing well, you’re usually not.

**  You’re only in a race with yourself. Don’t be too concerned with the conventions of the world around you.

**  Get out of the habit of thinking you need to belong. If you’re surrounded by people who are unsuccessful and then you become successful and feel you don’t belong, this can be disempowering.

**  Go against the conventional advice, and DO take things personally. Shielding and resisting things can exacerbate problems.

**  Tim Ferris says he “does not know a billionaire that hasn’t done a psychedelic”.

**  We need to design our businesses beyond our personalities. It needs to come from the soul upwards.

**  CEOs who have psychedelic experiences often come back and completely revamp their company and revamp their lives. Jeffrey is aware of some of the very top CEOs in the world who have done this.

**  The biggest discovery Jeffrey made from his psychedelic experiences was that he didn’t always need to be somewhere else.

**  Trust the universe again because nature rewards courage. There is a direct correlation between willingness to be courageous and success.

**  The freedom of realising that most of your life has been a lie can be very empowering. The questions and the self doubts stop.

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  What makes an entrepreneur successful

**  The definition of success

**  How to pick your friends

**  The benefits of psychedelic experiences

**  How to use fear to your advantage

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s free business planning template: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

** Business Excelleration Conference VIP day – book your place now: http://maxmyprofit.com.au/events

**  Jeffrey’s book, ‘The Evolutionary Entrepreneur’ can be bought here

**  Jeffrey’s website: http://www.jeffreyslayter.com

**  Jeffrey’s project of awakening: http://www.thegrandinitiative.com

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

While you may not want to dabble with psychedelic substances yourself, the reasons why Jeffrey and many of the world’s leading CEOs do use them are indisputable. Let’s conclude matters with a quote from Jeffrey: “I’d rather be weird and pave my own path than to be normal. Normal would suck.”

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 

Direct download: bbf160_awakening_the_entreprenuer_within_with_jeffrey_slayter.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

What a truly exceptional man we have on the show this week – you will never hear a more salient and inspiring business commentator. His story actually speaks for itself, but there’s a whole lot more on offer in this conversation.

Greg has set up his own business and successfully sold the franchise; he’s worked in residential lending and structured funding, and now he spends his time being the go-to man for CEOs who are looking to raise substantial investment to grow their business.

Greg is particularly revered for somehow raising $120m for an animated film, The Legends Of Oz: Dorothy’s Return. Not only was this the first time anyone in Hollywood had pulled this off, but Greg managed to do this despite telling each investor that they’d stand to lose money!

See below for some of Greg’s unbelievable insight:

**  Raising money is a good way of building teams. If you’re going to grow something you can’t do it alone.

**  If you’re going to grow, you have to be prepared to keep changing your mindset.

**  Embrace chaos. If you don’t, you won’t grow.

**  It isn’t all about the money. Most people invest for the primary reason that the investment would have a meaningful impact on their life.

**  Are you more interested in what you’re doing, or who you’re doing it with? If it’s the latter, then you’re set up to achieve the ‘impossible’ like Greg.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  Bootstrapping V funding a business

**  Greg’s amazing story

**  How Greg was involved in the digital projection of Michael Jackson

**  What prevents businesses from scaling

**  How Greg raised an ‘impossible’ amount of money

**  The secret to good leadership

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s Business Advice: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Find Greg on his website: http://www.gregcentineo.com

**  Greg’s must-read books with Amazon buy links: Howard Schultz - Pour your heart into it; Walter Isaacson - Einstein: His life and the universe; Walter Isaacson - Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

It’s so difficult to pick one bit of wisdom above all the others to end with, but we’ll go with this from Greg: “You can do good things by yourself, but you’ll never accomplish anything great alone".

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

 

Direct download: BBF159_Why_investors_gave_Gren_Centineo_over_120_million.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

This week we get an important reminder of the value of investing in assets outside of your own business. Michael Fuller from DPN has done this himself and now makes it his business to advise others on how they can achieve their financial goals through property investment.

See below for some of Michael’s top tips:

**  If you were to get sick or go away on holiday, could your business run without you?

**  Outside investments allow you to take a step back and make changes to your existing business.

**  Get a business coach. Of course we would say that, but one of Phil’s great regrets is not having one.

**  Do you have a business exit plan? You should always have an exit plan to focus the mind.

**  Einstein insightfully predicted that the most powerful thing in the universe would be compound interest. Let those property assets give you that power!

**  Take time to sit down and make an investment plan. What can I do now? And what can I do over time?

**  If you are going to invest in property, make sure you have the time to manage it. If you are using property as a sideline investment, you don’t want to be bogged down by having to manage renovation and short-term flipping.

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  The benefits of income protection

**  The costs of retaining property

**  Cashflow V capital growth

**  How to take the emotion out of buying property

**  The myth of reducing your tax bill

**  The perilous pension situation

**  What debt really means

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s Business Advice: http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Michael’s company site: http://www.dpn.com.au

**  Contact Michael directly at michaelf@dpn.com.au

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

Don’t just rely on your day-to-day business and your pension to look after you. Think about investment!

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000


This week we find out how Dean Salakas built up his company, the Party People from a AUD 500,000-per-year business with 3 employees to the powerhouse it is now, turning over AUD 4m per year with 40+ employees.

You might know Dean from his appearance on the Aussie entrepreneur TV show, The Shark Tank, where he actually turned down a AUD 400,000 offer for a share of his business, The Party Store. Dean learnt a lot from the experience and shared some great insight with us.

See below for some of Dean’s best advice:

**  Don’t throw everything at online. In retail, online sales currently account for 6-11% of overall sales, and at current growth rates it is forecast to be only 20% in 10 years.

**  However, you need to be good at both online marketing and conventional marketing. A lot of people start their buying journey online but end it in the store.

**  Plan plan plan! If you don’t have a long-term plan, when you hit a problem it’s harder to cope with it.

**  Understand your cycles. In Dean’s case he has to plan for the spikes in demand around dates like Halloween and Christmas… what are your spikes in demand?

**  Learn how to talk investors’ language. If you want your business to grow to a serious degree you’re probably going to need outside investment, but if you don’t fully understand what they want, you won’t get their money.

**  If you’re a small business with ambition, be prepared to do everything. You won’t have the resource to outsource the majority of your tasks.

**  Dean’s quickest path to growth is to master your marketing.

 

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  Is digital so important for retail?

**  The benefits of being open to change

**  Dean’s incredible journey

**  Why Dean turned down a AUD 400,000 offer on Shark Tank

**  The best strategies for raising funding

**  What didn’t work for Dean

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s Business Exceleration conference. Special VIP offer here

**  Dean’s Party People website: http://www.thepartypeople.com.au

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

Dean made his business, the Party People, grow exponentially with some very simple common-sense business methods. Listen to him!

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000

Direct download: BBF157_Building_Australias_largest_retail_party_supplies.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT

We have a first on BBF this week.. a man who is a certified professional organiser. Who in business doesn’t need to be organised? Joshua is well worth listening to because not only is he a professional organiser, he is the director of global community at Evernote: one of the most popular business apps in the world. Joshua is so organised he even uses Evernote to list his favourite burger joints around the world!

See below for some of Joshua’s best productivity advice:

**  ‘Busy' doesn’t mean ‘productive’. Do not aspire to be busy! When judging the quality of your output, concentrate on whether you get done what you want to get done - nothing else.

**  Apps can be great for productivity but it’s important to define what your problem is before you jump in and get an app. Doing it the other way around can make you even less efficient.

**  Learn to say no. You can only truly succeed in your time management if you say no at the right times.

**  When assigning tasks to others, there’s no substitute for good old-fashioned conversation. Dictating tasks and deadlines to people can be easily done with today’s technology, but it is a bad habit.

**  Document your processes. Only then can you delegate properly.

**  With any new tool/app, you don’t need to know everything it does. Just take a small everyday task and use the tool/app to help with that, and build from there.

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

**  Why productivity is important for small businesses

**  The definition of productivity

**  How modern technology has helped/hindered efficiency in business

**  Time management

**  Delegation

**  The inner workings of Evernote

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

**  Ben’s free business planning template can be downloaded from http://www.maxmyprofit.com.au

**  Find Joshua on Twitter here

**  Find Evernote on Twitter here

**  The Business Brain Food Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/businessbrainfood

 

**  All previous BBF episodes & show notes can be found at http://www.businessbrainfood.com.au

**  Twitter: https://twitter.com/bfewtrell

 

Call to action:

We’ll leave our very own Ben to give our inspirational message this week: “If this conversation with Joshua doesn’t inspire you to get organised, then nothing will!”

Also, if you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that!

Until next time, have a profitable day!

Cheers,
Ben Fewtrell
(02) 9111 5000