As an SME owner, you are well aware that South Africa’s economic future is precarious, and you have the knots in your stomach to prove it.

In truth, if only recently acknowledged as such by the powers that be, SME’s are a critical contributor to GDP growth; the new Small Business ministry has yet to make any impact other than stress the importance of this fact.

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Every entrepreneur and salesperson alike has to learn to deal with good news and bad news every day. It’s only when the bad news becomes too frequent that a business gets into treacherous waters! There are some age-old sales tricks that can always be counted on to keep the good news coming. Here are a few top tips that successful salespeople swear by:

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Otherwise titled “there’s nothing small about my business!”

We use the language of “small” business because it apparently defines the type of enterprise that we fit, but the people who named it are not people like me. They’re not business people like I am; from their comfortable government or corporate offices, they look down on my business and the thousands like it. They aren’t careful with their words so when they say “small business” they’re looking at a single set of criteria, a set related only to turnover, my profits and how they can benefit from them.

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The upskilling of employees is something that is often neglected by small business owners. Even though we know that our employees are our greatest assets, the thought of paying for or “losing” productivity to education and development can be unbearable.

The solution to this challenge is to make use of distance learning as a medium for education and empowerment, which will make a significant difference to your business without breaking the bank.

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When I raise the subject of Network Marketing, what comes to your mind? Many, I am sure, are cringing at the thought of pyramid schemes and dodgy sales people trying to get you to buy something you definitely don’t want. Well, if your perception of network marketing and direct selling has been tainted by some bad experiences, try to overlook them for a moment and bear with me for a while because the reality of the industry is somewhat different.

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As a start-up or small business owner, the daily commute of operations generally drains the lifeblood out of the best of entrepreneurs. And, these time-sensitive operations leave little time to enhance their skills set at an after- or between hours higher education facility.

Enter digital education options.

As we steadily move toward a digital world and more frequent engaging conversation takes place, its cousins – e-Learning and online learning – are not far off. So, just what are companies like Siyandza Skills Development meticulously developing in these areas?

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I am amazed by people who go to (or even set up) networking meetings or events who do not have business cards with them! I mean, I can sort of understand being somewhere and running out of cards because you underestimated the size of the crowd that actually arrived (that’s why I always have a full box of cards in the car), but people going to a networking event or even hosting a networking event and not having any cards – well that just defies logic.

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