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Business Skills

Every successful leader or manager possesses a diverse range of business management skills, such team building and motivation. In these articles the brightest business minds discuss the key skills needed to run a company, business unit or team, including time management, goal setting and communication skills.

Five ways to ruin your career

Five common mistakes could be damaging your career potential, writes Cheryl Lock for Fast Company via Learn Vest. Learn what they are and how to fix them.

How to plan for the long term and the short term at the same time

Is it possible to invest in tomorrow without damaging performance today? Ken Favaro, writing for Strategy+Business, looks at short-term/long-term tension and how to get over it.

How to thrive in a slow-growth industry

Weak markets are not a valid excuse for a company’s slow growth, write Kasturi Rangan and Evan Hirsh for Strategy+Business. With the right market proposition, you can achieve success, no matter what state your industry is in.

Tips on better time management

Time management is one of the biggest challenges in the modern workplace. Many leaders complain of being short on time or are looking for ways to improve productivity.

With that in mind, Frances Booth, writing for Forbes.com, shares a long list of time management tips, including:

Want to be an entrepreneur? Here are some things you need to know first

Think you want to be an entrepreneur? Lolly Daskal, writing for Inc.com, reveals what it’s really like to go it alone.

Daskal reveals eight facts about entrepreneurship that you really need to know:

1) You might fail. Almost 90% of startups fail within a few years. You might dream of being the next Amazon.com, but your chances are slim.

Communication: avoid these three traps

Ron Ashkenas discusses the difficulty of communication on his HBR.org blog, observing that large organisations in particular struggle in this area.

Planning fallacy: why it always takes longer than you think to get things done

Human beings are generally "pretty lousy" at estimating the time they will need to complete a task, says Heidi Grant Halvorson on Fast Company – and obviously that has implications for managers everywhere.

How to help employees meet their goals

On HBR.org, Amy Gallo looks at ways of making sure your employees succeed in achieving their goals.

Are you fulfilling your potential as a boss?

Are you a good boss – or a great one? That's the question posed by Linda Hill and Kent Lineback, writing for Harvard Business Review. They observe that most bosses reach a certain level of proficiency and stop there, leaving their potential unfulfilled.

Eight tips for your CEO job interview

How should you prepare if you’re going to be interviewed for an executive role? Early careerists get plenty of interview advice, but those at the top are left to their own devices, writes Jane Rankin for Management Today.

The author lists eight ways you can prepare for that all-important leadership role interview.

Is it time to reinvent your brand?

According to Lynn Russo Whylly, writing for ChiefExecutive.net, ignoring or missing a major consumer trend or behavioural shift can seriously damage a brand’s chances of survival.

Some big-name brands have endured by learning how to reinvent themselves, such as IBM, Apple and McDonald’s.

Want to start your own business? Don’t quit your day job just yet

You have a good career that pays well, but you want to strike out on your own. Should you quit your day job to pursue your dream? Well, not just yet, advise Lolly Daskal, Leo Widrich and Elizabeth Gore, writing for Fast Company.

Getting the most out of your mentoring relationship

The right mentor can make a huge difference to your career, writes Katherine Reynolds Lewis for Fortune.

Lois Zachary, author of The Mentor's Guide: Facilitating Effective Learning Relationships, tells Reynolds Lewis that 96% of executives consider mentoring as an important development tool.

How great leaders communicate in times of change

There’s only so much you can do to prepare for change, observes Geil Browning, writing for Inc.com. She insists the real leadership test is helping your team deal with the change when it comes.

How to survive a social media crisis

On MIT Sloan Management Review, Gerald C. Kane reports from the 2014 South by Southwest festival where he attended a session entitled Tomorrow Is Another Day: Surviving A Social Media Crisis.

The wisdom of Steve Jobs

On Business Insider, Dylan Love shares some innovation insight in the form of the most inspirational quotes from the late Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs.

Here is a selection:

Are you creating problems instead of solving them?

Many people launch startups because the idea of being boss is more appealing than being employee. However, as Suzanne Lucas observes on Inc.com, the problems don’t go away just because you are the boss.

“In fact,” writes Lucas, “there seem to be more – clients, employees, investors, regulations – and sometimes, the biggest problem is you.”

Growth opportunities: don’t overlook the low-hanging fruit

Leaders can miss growth opportunities because they are so far removed from the many day-to-day processes carried out in their organisations they lead, observe Jeremy Eden and Terri Long, writing for ChiefExecutive.net.

Advice on discussing pay with employees

Discussing money with employees can be uncomfortable, as Amy Gallo points out, writing for HBR.org. Even if you’re sharing the good news of a bonus or pay rise, it’s difficult to talk about specific numbers when valuing someone’s work, especially if you’re not the one making the decision.

Building your innovation team – the characters you need

As Amina Elahi points out, writing for the Chicago Tribune’s Blue Sky section, innovation doesn’t just happen – it’s created.

The top ten mistakes to avoid when setting up an online business

Whatever kind of enterprise you’re launching, an online aspect of your business is essential nowadays. Even if you aren’t actually selling online, a web presence is a must for promoting your company.

As John Rampton points out, writing for Forbes.com, there’s more to going online than just building a website and a social media account.

How to lead your company out of a crisis

Even good leaders can overlook early signs of trouble, according to Doug Yakola, writing for McKinsey Insights.

Yakola has been running recovery programmes for 20 years as chief restructuring officer or CFO in over a dozen turnaround situations. He has witnessed many managers heading into crisis territory without realising it.

Dealing with creativity blockages

Creative work can take a long time, observes Jane Porter, writing for Fast Company. Results can be inconsistent, the gestation period can feel unproductive and it’s prone to blockages.

In fact, the challenging nature of creativity and the stagnation involved can tempt you into abandoning projects prematurely.

The foundations of freelance success

There are popular images of entrepreneurs – such as a startup founder, someone running a franchise or a veteran business owner.

However, one type of entrepreneur not often considered is a freelancer, observes Jon Salm, writing for Entrepreneur.com.

The author shares some tips for entrepreneurs looking to build a freelance career:

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