Opinion

Success, succession, CEO

Planning for success(ion)? Identifying your successors is only one piece of a long-term exit strategy

HBO is revered for its authentic portrayals of times and places throughout history, from Band of Brothers’ harrowing journey woven through the events of World War II, to the crime-ridden streets of ‘90s Baltimore in The Wire. Yet it feels like none of its series based in reality (sorry, Game of Thrones) have captured the …

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HMRC, customer

Citizen or Subject? HMRC’s compulsion to call everyone a ‘customer’ is misguided, and should worry you

HMRC is obsessed with the word customer. Their annual report for the year ended March 2022 mentions the word more than four hundred times, describing (gleefully, we anthropomorphise) how the organisation is split into four core customer-focussed groups. In good keeping with the grave case of “customerphilia” from which it suffers, these four divisions are …

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culture of creativity

What is the secret to building a creative culture and how does it benefit team members and customers?

When someone tells you that their business aim is to cultivate a culture of creativity, what sort of business comes to mind? Creativity is not only for job titles such as graphic designer or marketer but, instead, can be applied to the operations and structure of a business.  After the pandemic, many businesses recognised that …

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LLP, tax, PAYE

Easy to follow example on why paying yourself as an LLP member may be better than through PAYE

Awesome! I Survived the pandemic restrictions to my business, I broke even and haven’t got any tax to pay! Or have I? To explore the subject of tax to pay, let’s drill into the numbers a little bit. Here is our imaginary company, Wobbly Candles Ltd. We buy and sell scented and ornate candles in …

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vat inspection, vat, hmrc, blog by optimal compliance

I’ve been contacted about a VAT inspection – what should I expect?

As a small business owner you probably dread the thought of HMRC opening an enquiry on your business’ VAT returns. Over the last ten years we’ve assisted our clients with numerous routine VAT enquiries, and on the whole, we’ve found HMRC’s VAT officers to be supportive and helpful throughout the process. We’ve put together this …

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intangible assets, goodwill blog

The intangible asset revolution, archaic accounting and the myth of goodwill

In the UK today, most people work in service-based and knowledge-based industries. These are industries which deal in intangible assets such as intellectual property: knowledge and know-how, patents, trademarks, copyrights and brands. This wasn’t always the case, but the pace of change has been accelerating. It’s only in the last fifty years that these industries, …

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limited liability partnership, blog, optimal compliance

Your top 3 concerns about switching to a Limited Liability Partnership answered

Have you thought about switching your business structure from a limited company to a limited liability partnership but you kept running into these three concerns: “It won’t work for my business because we are too big.” “The industry we are in, I just don’t see it working…” “Management wise, what does it mean when everyone …

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group structure

Should I implement a group structure? Is it worth the hassle? How do I even start?

The concepts of group structures and holding companies sound very corporate. Like, really, obnoxiously corporate. The idea of having several companies owned by another company which, in turn, is owned by a bunch of shareholders can be daunting. And that’s not even mentioning the extra statutory burdens it seemingly places on the business: more VAT …

Should I implement a group structure? Is it worth the hassle? How do I even start? Read More »

ben crampin

Partner

Ben’s been here pretty much since the get-go and, as such, has been instrumental in growing the business into what it is today.
 
He’s passionate about, in his words, ‘helping people and businesses that are just constantly being taken advantage of’ by providing affordable advice and support with an eye to ‘levelling the playing field’.
 
Ben looks forward to the day when automation will, once and for all, fumigate the fear and confusion caused by oppressive bureaucracy and strongly believes that ‘technology holds the solutions to the problems we’re trying to solve’.
 
Furthermore, he can see that technology will, in time, provide the scalability required to help a theoretically limitless number of SMEs survive and thrive against the odds.
Ben doesn’t think much of government agencies and he doesn’t suffer fools; two points that aren’t always mutually exclusive.