Blog – Reputation Matters

Why should I bother with Terms and Conditions for my business?

It’s fair to say that most consumers would be wrong to claim that they always read the Terms and Conditions before agreeing to use a product or service.

Millions of people across the UK are guilty of failing to read the Terms and Conditions, otherwise known as the boring bits or the small print, and that’s a pretty big deal. But why?

Terms and Conditions act as a legally binding contract between a company and its clients.

The agreement doesn’t only set out the rules and guidelines that must be followed, but it clearly sets out expectations from all sides of the party too.

There can be serious ramifications for companies who trade without Terms and Conditions. This can lead to unwelcomed headaches for customers too.

Within this blog, our spotlight is on some of the top issues Crimson Crab have encountered as a result of companies not having clear Terms and Conditions.

 

  1. Lack of ability to limit liability. As a business, if you don’t bother having Terms and Conditions, there are all sorts of liability that you may have to accept when you don’t need to.

 

  1. Difficulties if your client fails to make payment. Without Terms and Conditions, you may find yourself in a costly situation if court action needs to be made due to a client failing to make a payment on the work you have completed. By ensuring they agree to your payment terms within your Terms and Conditions, you’re protecting yourself from unwanted surprises and difficulties in Court.

 

  1. Unrealistic expectations. Without Terms and Conditions, clients may claim the work you are doing isn’t sufficient and fails to meet their expectations. By drawing up clear and easy-to-understand Terms and Conditions, you’re making it clear what work you will complete for the price agreed.

 

  1. Misunderstanding about compliance with legislation. Many businesses struggle to understand that Terms and Conditions play an important role in ensuring you are complying with the law including for example Trading Standards legislation. Having a set of Terms and Conditions allows companies to publish essential details, such as its name and address or consumer cancellation rights as required.

 

  1. Limited ability to protect intellectual property. This is all about protecting the creations of the mind, like inventions, literacy, and artistic work. Without highlighting in your Terms and Conditions the use to which your client may put your intellectual property, people may steal your ideas which could have otherwise been making you money. Setting out your stance on Intellectual Property will reduce the likelihood of this happening and will make it easier to deal with if it does.

 

There is so much to think about when you are trying to manage your own business, so it’s easy to prioritise another matter over Terms and Conditions.

But by having these you will establish an essential legal binding contract, on your terms as long as they are fair, which can protect you and your clients for years to come.

It’s good practice to regularly review your Terms and Conditions as circumstances can change as can the law, but also how your business operates may change over time.

Whether you are a start-up or an established business, Terms and Conditions are crucially important today more than ever.

At Crimson Crab, we can help with anything related to the Terms and Conditions belonging to your business. From reviewing to drafting your Terms and Conditions, a great starting point is our Business MOT get in touch to take it today.

Crab Insight May 2021

Red Tape Busters Volume 8, Issue 08, `Terms of Business’

 

Welcome to the May edition of Crab Insight

May is the bridge between Spring and Summer, a month of transition.  May 2021 will certainly be no exception.

As lockdown eases further step three of the lockdown roadmap in England will take place.  As long as it is safe, all of the most high-risk sectors will be allowed to reopen, with Covid-secure guidance in place. Outdoor gatherings for no more than 30 people and indoors for six people or no more than two households will be okay.

If you need assistance with Covid Secure Workplaces please take a look at:

Grounded Safety

As the economy opens up more, invariably our thoughts will turn to our customer relationships, maybe re-establishing them or with new ways of doing business such as e-commerce. Whatever the circumstances the interaction or business relationship between you and your customer for the supply of goods or services is subject to legal control.

Hence this month we are focusing on the way to regulate this transaction via Terms and Conditions (T&C’s).

If you need practical help with HR Management or Data Protection please do take a look at:

 
 

Claudia Crab’s May Focus

Claudia the Crimson Crab icon

“Terms and Conditions”

A verbal contract isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.” ― Samuel Goldwyn, Hollywood film producer

Contracts are formed every day in business and they represent the legal basis on which you are willing to do business with your customers. Despite what Samuel Goldwyn said they are legally binding on both parties, whether in writing or not, the difficulty with a verbal agreement is that it is difficult to prove what was agreed too the satisfaction of a Judge.

When dealing with consumers (i.e. someone not acting for their business, trade, or profession) legislation gives statutory rights to the customer, obligations to the seller and controls the content. Certain consumer contracts can be canceled and having terms that try to take away a consumer’s statutory rights are illegal, for example, “no refunds”.

If it is written down the document could be known by many other names, from simply “business terms”, to “terms of sale” or “Terms and Conditions” or “T&C’s”. Whatever you call them in general terms, the meaning in any of these names is that you are offering your goods or services for sale with certain conditions in place. 

To many people “terms and conditions” represent incomprehensible legal jargon in an enormous document with small print or a small pop-up box where you have to scroll frantically to read more than a few words at a time. The problem is that these types of documents may be invalid in English Courts and can result in an investigation by Trading Standards.

When using terms and conditions always follow the Crimson Crabs strapline:

Ethical  |  legal  |  Responsible

The big question this month is:

Why should I bother with Terms and Conditions for my business? 

Look out for our social media posts and our blog later in the month as we will hopefully be able to flesh out your thinking.
 

Top tip – To create a great set of terms and conditions you need to understand some of the potential issues that your business faces when doing business with your clients or customers and our Business MOT can help with this


F2 Business Huddle Online

Friday 14 May 2021

12 noon to 2 pm

Get your ticket on Eventbrite


Reputation Advocates

When you need a reliable and dependable expert click on the crabAccredited Crimson Crab Reputation Advocate Logo


Renewing Reputation Advocates

 

Bascule logo

Building bridges between people, policy and inclusive practice

 


 
Feedback

We love to receive feedback and it really helps us to improve our services for everyone.

Until next month look after your reputation!!

Ethical, legal, responsible trading wave
T:023 9263 7190 | E: enquiries@crimsoncrab.net | W: www.crimsoncrab.co.uk

Copyright (c) 2021 Crimson Crab Ltd, all rights reserved.

Does your business strategy take account of business risks?

Having a clear and realistic long-term plan in any situation is important if you desire to achieve positive results.

Whether your strategy is focused on your business as a whole, or perhaps key elements of your company such as its sales, marketing, or staffing, strategies can pose risks to your business as they are encouraging change and should be thought about and reviewed regularly.

Failing to take account of business risks within your business strategy can have consequences for your business and those with an interest in its affairs.

That’s why we’ve compiled three answers to the potential response you may have to the title of this post, does your business strategy take account of business risks?

  • Absolutely! Yes, my business does take account of business risks.

It’s good practice to consider the risks associated with an action which you may label as essential to get you to where you wish for your organisation to be. Good job for thinking about business risks!

But remember to assess any risks associated with any strategy for your business on a regular basis – we’d recommend quarterly or annually – as risks do evolve.

  • I’m not too sure whether my business strategy takes account of business risks…

Ultimately, if you have a one-year, three-year, five-year, or maybe an even longer plan for your business without assessing the risks associated with it, you’re leaving yourself susceptible to obstacles.

But don’t worry because, you’ll be pleased to know, you can swiftly identify risks associated with a specific business objective by conducting a simple SWOT Analysis.

By identifying an objective that will help you towards achieving your long-term strategy, and listing the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats concerning this, you’re already compiling a list of the risks which may arise too.

This approach may help you with being proactive at mitigating risks from happening as you’ve identified the potential issues already.

We believe weaknesses and threats uncovered as a result of your SWOT Analysis can be turned into positive opportunities for your business. Speak to us if we can help you with this!

  • My business strategy doesn’t take account of business risks.

A strategy is typically split into several objectives, also known by many as key results.

All of the key results aligned with the strategy must be completed in able to achieve what you set out to gain.

Although every objective/key result does come with its risks. You should take account of business risks belonging to these various objectives to prevent any unwanted headaches down the line.

Speak to Crimson Crab for further information about how to take account of business risks with your strategy today.

Crab Insight April 2021

Red Tape Busters Volume 8, Issue 07, `Deal with risk’

 

Welcome to the April edition of Crab Insight

As lockdown eases we need to move forward with our businesses and identify opportunities for growth or at least to get back to where we were before lockdown.

Beware though every opportunity carries with it some degree of risk.

So, Claudia Crabs focus this month is dealing with risk. It’s important not to lose perspective, don’t sweat the small stuff and ignore the real show stoppers.

HR management,  health and safety management and data protection can all be problematical in their own ways. If you need some practical help please do take a look at some of our solutions:

 
 
 

Claudia Crab’s April Focus

Claudia the Crimson Crab icon

“Deal with risk”

““Opportunities pass by frequently, but people don’t always see them. Taking risks grants you an invisible set of glasses that reveal the many opportunities which surround you.” ― Anas Hamshari, Businessma n With An Affliction

A good starting point is a SWAT. Strengths, weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats analysis In this way, both internal and external factors are identified, remember weaknesses are best thought of as areas for improvement. If you find your self struggling with external factors try using the acronym PESTEL.  This will help you think about the opportunities and threats likely to develop. PESTEL, polictical, economic, social, technological, environmental and legalThe use of a SWAT Matrix helps you identify where:

strengths play to opportunities or reduce threats

weaknesses hold you back or exacerbate threats

SWOT Matrix Once the major areas are identified you can carry out a risk assessment in a systematic way. risk assessment The key is to unpick how you can reduce the likelihood of a high-risk occurrence happening and, or reduce the damage done to the business if it does happen. That way you will be taking responsibility for your businesses strategy by proactively managing risks. You will also be in a better position to deal with issues that crop up as they should not come as a surprise.  This follows Crimson Crabs strapline:

Ethical  |  legal  |  Responsible

So this month we are asking the question:

Does your strategy take account of business risks? 

Look out for our social media posts and our blog later in the month as we will hopefully be able to flesh out your thinking.
Top tip – A great starting point is to understand some of the risks that your business faces and our Business MOT can help with this

F2 Business Huddle Online

Friday 14 May 2021

12 noon to 2 pm

WE ARE LIMITED TO 100 PLACES

TO AVOID DISSAPOINTMENT 

Get your ticket on Eventbrite


Reputation Advocates

When you need a reliable and dependable expert click on the crabAccredited Crimson Crab Reputation Advocate Logo


 
Feedback

We love to receive feedback and it really helps us to improve our services for everyone.

Until next month look after your reputation!!

Ethical, legal, responsible trading wave
T:023 9263 7190 | E: enquiries@crimsoncrab.net | W: www.crimsoncrab.co.uk

Copyright (c) 2021 Crimson Crab Ltd, all rights reserved.

How are you following the rules and regulations that affect your business?

The rules and regulations your business is required to follow may differ from one industry to the next.We're open

It’s your responsibility to ensure you are following what’s right for your type of business and that your team are copying your good example too.

Certain organisations are regulated differently. For example, financial services providers, investment firms and consumer credit firms alike are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, while care homes and hospitals are monitored by the Care Quality Commission. Food businesses are regulated by the Food Standards Agency and have to be registered with the local authority.

Even though they are three different sectors, they are accountable to a regulatory body that will ensure everything the business does is ethical, responsible and aligned with the law.

So, who are you regulated by and why is this important? Well, it depends. Ultimately, most businesses are regulated by an industry-specific regulator – but other sectors have less regulation.

The industries which aren’t heavily regulated in the UK include cleaning services, plumbing and recruitment.

That doesn’t mean to say that there is a free for all, everyone must follow the various and continually-changing UK rules and regulations set by Parliament, regardless of whether they have an industry-specific regulator or not.

Rules and regulations can be complicated and maybe a challenge to follow, especially if you’re not an expert on this matter.

But there’s a simple way to build on your understanding of how it works – and we call it the Onion Analogy.

There are several layers to rules and regulations and, aligning our explanation to the Onion Analogy, we’re going to uncover three layers.

Layer one of the onion – The regulatory bodies you must follow

These include, but aren’t limited to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and more.

Generally, these bodies give guidance on the area they cover but they also have enforcement powers when it comes to breaches of the law.

Every company – including yours – must follow various authorities if it is to adhere to UK law.

Layer two of the onion – The industry-specific regulatory bodies you are accountable to

Similar to the earlier examples for the financial, health-sector and food sectors, industry-specific regulatory bodies are the organisations that specialise within the area your business works.

Other examples include the Environment Agency (EA), the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Ofcom, the Gambling Commission and more.

Layer three of the onion – The industry norms. What are others doing which is right? 

The final layer within the Onion Analogy is your industry norms – what are others within your sector doing which is right for your consumers.

It’s impossible for us to give you a definitive answer on whether you are following the rules and regulations for your sector. However, if you’re looking for some expert insight and guidance into whether what you are doing is right or requires improvement, our Business MOT is a great place to start.

Business MOT

Crab Insight March 2021

Red Tape Busters Volume 8, Issue 06, `Regulatory Regimes’

 

Welcome to the March edition of Crab Insight

So the evenings are drawing out and the clocks spring forward soon. Spring is definitely in the air with crocuses and daffodils in bloom.

Despite this, our focus at Crimson Crab HQ is on regulatory regimes, as they affect all businesses to varying degrees.

HR management, data protection and health and safety management can be problematical so please do take a look at some of our solutions:

 
 
 

Claudia Crab’s March Focus

Claudia the Crimson Crab icon

Regulatory Regimes

“Many people who try to do big bold things in the world find out it’s not about the money or the technology: It’s about the regulatory hurdles that will try and stop you.“ – Peter Diamandis, US Businessman founder and chairman of the X Prize Foundation

There are a vast array of regulators in the UK many of whom have varying impacts on business depending on the industry, from the Care Quality Commission and the Law Society to the Charity Commission and Ofqual.

However, there is a significant number such as the Information Commissioners Office (ICO), the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) which are universal. 

The regulators’ purpose is to ensure there is a level playing field and protect the weaker party in any transaction (which is usually the client or customer).

If a regulator has cause to investigate a business, they will try to demonstrate insufficient control over business processes and procedures.

It makes sense to be in a position to show that you have done everything possible to comply and that you carry out checks to make sure that your procedures work.

That way the regulator will be more likely to help resolve compliance failures, rather than take enforcement action which can prove costly for a business and damaging to its reputation.

This follows Crimson Crabs strapline:

Ethical  |  legal  |  Responsible

How are you following all the rules and regulations that affect your business? 

Look out for our social media posts and our blog later in the month as we will hopefully be able to flesh out your thinking.

Top tip – A great starting point is to understand the regulatory regimes that apply to your business and our Business MOT can help


F2 Business Huddle Online

Friday 12 March 2021

12 noon to 2 pm

WE ARE LIMITED TO 100 PLACES

FOUR PLACES ARE LEFT

TO AVOID DISSAPOINTMENT 

Get your ticket on Eventbrite


Reputation Advocates

When you need a reliable and dependable expert click on the crabAccredited Crimson Crab Reputation Advocate Logo


 
Feedback

We love to receive feedback and it really helps us to improve our services for everyone.

Until next month look after your reputation!!

Ethical, legal, responsible trading wave
T:023 9263 7190 | E: enquiries@crimsoncrab.net | W: www.crimsoncrab.co.uk

Copyright (c) 2021 Crimson Crab Ltd, all rights reserved.

Nine ways to help improve the leadership and management of your business

How your business is managed and led will have an impact on its success – that’s why we’ve put together nine ways to improve leadership and management.

Leading boats

But first, it’s important to understand that although there are crossovers between management and leadership, there are very clear and significant differences too.

Management is all about the day-to-day operations of an organisation.

Leadership concentrates on where an organisation is going and who will be on the journey.

So how can you improve the leadership and management of your business and thus the way it is governed?

Here are some tips to help:

1. Understand the vision of your business.

Every organisation should have a clear idea of where they wish to be within an agreed time frame. If there is no drive to achieve an agreed objective within five, 10 or 15 years, then expecting to have fully engaged leaders and managers may be minimal. Some people are content in their positions and satisfied with a routine, but it’s that consistency of doing the same thing which won’t support the success of your business and shall certainly not play a part in improving how your business is run.

2. Understand the mission of your company.

What is your company currently doing to reach its vision – that’s what your mission is about. A mission statement compliments a vision and, if you wish to improve the leadership and management of your business, ensure everyone on your top table are aligned with this.

3. Use core values to build upon everything you do.

Core values form part of your company’s mission statement. But they deserve their own point as everything you do, from decision making on large projects to recruiting the right person onto your team, should have your core values at the foundation.

4. Be clear in who is responsible for what – and ensure people have the right skills to fulfil their role.

One way to improve the management and leadership of your business is to define roles and responsibilities. Ensure people know who does what. It sounds simple, but miscommunication is evident within many organisations. Clarity can mitigate this.

5. Never stop learning.

Pretty straightforward, have leaders and managers who implement the best practice they have learnt into best practice to benefit your business.

6. Evaluate the performance of your top team.

Evaluating performance, and tracking metrics are important for every business which thirsts to succeed. If your top team aren’t performing, take steps to address the issue.

7. Ensure there is a timely provision of information.

If your expectation is to receive information from senior members of your team, ask them to have this to you within an agreed time-frame. The leadership and management of your business will crumble if you’re continually waiting for key team members to provide you with important information.

8. Encourage accountability.

The act of holding each other accountable shouldn’t only take place at a leadership and management level but within all levels of the business. Embracing and encouraging accountability will support everyone’s engagement within the activities of your business.

9. Don’t take life too seriously.

There are obstacles in life and challenges along the way, but don’t let them tarnish your character and ambition. Enjoy journeying with other people like you and do your very best to improve the leadership and management of your business.

For further information about how your business is governed, as well as ensuring everything you do is fair, legal and ethical, get in touch with Crimson Crab today.

Crab Insight February 2021

Red Tape Busters Volume 8, Issue 05, LEADERSHIP

 

Welcome to the February edition of Crab Insight

Leadership is important at the best of times and through the challenges of life – especially with everything that’s happening at the moment. 

That’s why Leadership is our chosen word of the month. It also goes hand in hand with corporate governance which is Claudia Crabs February Focus.

We want to explore various themes around leadership, so do look out for our social media posts throughout the month.  We would love to hear your thoughts.

Leadership is a key part of our collaborations:

 
 
 
Mainly because at different times different people take leadership roles within our collaborations and that is fantastic as it leads to other opportunities.
 
If you would like to have a chat about corporate governance please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
 
 

Claudia Crab’s February Focus

Claudia the Crimson Crab icon

Corporate Governance

 

“Good corporate governance is about ‘intellectual honesty’ and not just sticking to rules and regulations, capital flowed towards companies that practiced this type of good governance.“ – Mervyn King former governor of the Bank of England

Corporate governance is the system of rules, practices and processes by which a company is directed and controlled. It refers to the way in which companies are governed and to what purpose. It identifies who has power and accountability, and who makes decisions.

Good governance is when a business ensures that there is a robust decision-making process in place. Without good governance, an organisation lacks policies and procedures to ensure accuracy, consistency and responsiveness to key stakeholders including customers, shareholders and regulators.

It has eight major characteristics:

  • participatory,
  • consensus-oriented,
  • accountable,
  • transparent,
  • responsive,
  • effective and efficient,
  • equitable and inclusive and
  • follows the rule of law.

It can be broken down into four simple words:

  • People,
  • Purpose,
  • Process, and
  • Performance

This follows Crimson Crabs strapline  Ethical  |  legal  |  Responsible

Top tip – A great starting point for any business interested in governance is our Business MOT
 

F2 Business Huddle Online

Friday 12 February 2021

12 noon to 2 pm

WE ARE LIMITED TO 100 PLACES

FOUR PLACES ARE LEFT

TO AVOID DISSAPOINTMENT 

Get your ticket on Eventbrite

 

Reputation Advocates

When you need a reliable and dependable expert click on the crabAccredited Crimson Crab Reputation Advocate Logo


Membership Renewals

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Find out more


 
Feedback

We love to receive feedback and it really helps us to improve our services for everyone.

Until next month look after your reputation!!

Ethical, legal, responsible trading wave
T:023 9263 7190 | E: enquiries@crimsoncrab.net | W: www.crimsoncrab.co.uk

Copyright (c) 2021 Crimson Crab Ltd, all rights reserved.

Secure your cash flow: Disclose your legal trading entity

Your clients have the legal right to understand exactly who they are dealing with. If they don’t, you could find yourself with agreements being void and not getting paid for the work you do…

Imagine it – business is booming and you have just had one of the strongest quarters to date.

Then suddenly, your customers stop paying and you have no legal way to get your money as a result of not abiding by trading laws and disclosing your legal trading entity.

But what is the legal trading entity?

In a nutshell, it’s the name of the business used for tax purposes. It’s the ‘legal’ name of the person or entity that owns it.

If you’re a sole trader, a plasterer for example, then the legal trading entity of your business is your name with or without your initials or forenames.

So, if your name is Richard James Smith, the legal name for your business could be Richard James Smith, Richard J Smith, Richard Smith R. J. Smith, R Smith or simply Smith.

If you trade under a name which does not include your surname, for example, Phoenix Plastering Services you would have to give your surname to every current or potential client.

For example Smiths Phoenix Plastering Services or Richard Smith trading as Phoenix Plastering Services together with an address at which you can be contacted. In legal parlance an address at which you will accept the service of documents.

For unincorporated partnership in gets a little more complicated as the legal trading name is the last names (with or without initials or forenames) of all of the partners.

For limited liability companies, partnerships and corporations, the business’ legal name is the one that was registered with Companies House including Ltd, LLP, PLC etc. In addition, there are specific disclosure requirements for these types of business including full corporate name, registered office address, registered number and place of registration.

The trade or business name is the name a company uses for advertising and sales purposes. It’s imperative you understand that this is different from the legal trading names previously described.

It’s a legal requirement that your legal trading entity is included on all business documents and their electronic equivalents which include invoices, letters, emails and websites.

If you’re a business that may trade under a different name to your legal trading entity and may be unsure of the rules, get in touch with the Crimson Crab team today.

Crab Insight January 2021

Red Tape Busters Volume 8, Issue 04, COLLABORATION

 

Welcome to the January edition of Crab Insight

The first edition of Crab Insight for 2021 (Crimson Crab’s tenth anniversary year) so a very happy new year from us all at Crimson Crab and may 2021 be infinitely better than 2020 for us all. 

As we enter lockdown three we have been thinking a lot about collaborative working. Essentially there is a golden thread of collaboration running through Crimson Crab.The golden thread of collaboration.

We collaborate on things like 

 
 
 
Mainly because it’s a great opportunity to add extra value. It’s also a hugely beneficial way of working on many levels especially during lockdown.
 
If you would like to discuss a potential collaboration with us please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
 
 

Claudia Crab’s January Focus

Claudia the Crimson Crab icon

Trading Disclosure

“Your customers and clients have a legal right to know who they are dealing with.” Robert Briggs – Compliance Director Crimson Crab Ltd

This means that they are entitled to know your legal trading entities name, be it yourself as a sole trader, the names of all the partners for a partnership or the corporate name of a registered body.

If you trade under a name other than that of the legal trading entity then you should disclose the full details of the legal trading entity including an address where you will accept service of documents.

For corporate bodies, there are specific requirements to give the full registered name, registered office address, registration number and place of registration.

All of this information needs to go on business documents including letters and emails and websites.

We can provide a “letterhead” check to make sure you have it right

 
Top tip – A great starting point for any business review is our Business MOT
 

F2 Business Huddle Online

Friday 12 February 2021

12 noon to 2 pm

Get your ticket on Eventbrite

 

Reputation Advocates

When you need a reliable and dependable expert click on the crabAccredited Crimson Crab Reputation Advocate Logo

 

 


Feedback

We love to receive feedback and it really helps us to improve our services for everyone.

Until next month look after your reputation!!

Ethical, legal, responsible trading wave
T:023 9263 7190 | E: enquiries@crimsoncrab.net | W: www.crimsoncrab.co.uk 

Copyright (c) 2021 Crimson Crab Ltd, all rights reserved.