30 April 2013

"An Overnight Success"Article by Tina Zawila

“Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing.” 

I heard this quotation recently and it resonated with me on so many levels.  To illustrate the concept, it was used in a sporting analogy – motivation may have got you along to the gym in January, but it is discipline that keeps you going in April and it is discipline that is getting you results.
This too applies in business.  Your motivation, or what we call your “new business energy” may have got you started, but it is your discipline, that is keeping your business going and growing on a day to day basis.

Best selling author John C Maxwell, talks about the Law of Consistency.  By his own admission, it’s one of his “less sexy” laws of leadership and success, however, it is critical.  Many “overnight successes” were not achieved overnight.  Often years of discipline and consistency have been applied to honing skills, perfecting a product, educating the market and building a business.

It is what you do on a daily basis that defines you – it’s not that moment of brilliance, or that one day of hard work – it is what you do day-in and day-out that will lead to your success.

In this modern era of technology, or maybe we should call it the “era of distraction” it is very easy to become “undisciplined” and to get caught up in the minutia, or distracted from the tasks that will bring you the best results when practiced consistently.
Therefore, my challenge to you is to identify what it is, that brings you (or will bring you) the best results and get you closer to your goals, and then do it on a daily basis with focus and dedication.

I look forward to you and your business getting the recognition it deserves as an “overnight success”.

What brings you the best results and gets you closer to your goals?
What strategies do you use to cope in the “era of distraction”?
Is your business generating the rewards you deserve?

Call the team at Sothertons on 4972 1300 to discuss what it is you need to do consistently to achieve results and we will help keep you accountable to ensure your success.

23 April 2013

"Wealth - is it just a state of mind?" Article by Steve Marsten

I came across an interesting scenario recently and I will change the names to protect the innocent. I was having a coffee with a good mate who I hadn't touched base with for a while. Let's call him Tony. With the crazy work schedules in Gladstone for certain industries, this is not unusual nowadays. He is a tradesman working for one of the big companies in town. He is happily married with three beautiful children and his wife works part-time.

I have known them for over 25 years. Tony coaches his lad’s soccer team while his daughter attends dance lessons and his other lad has music lessons, so he is often full on with his life. He has a happiness that fills his everyday life and he constantly speaks of the family. They live in a nice home, both Tony and his wife drive good cars and each year they take a holiday out of the city and get away from it all with the kids.

While having our coffee, one of my major clients walked in with a business associate. He saw me and came straight over and shook my hand. I said Allan this is Tony. We shared a short conversation and then he moved down the back of the cafe to have a quiet meeting with his colleague. 
To my surprise, Tony said - "wow - imagine being that guy?" Now Tony's reaction can be understandable when you realize Allan who is a talented businessman, built his business up from scratch. He built 5 businesses actually all performing incredibly. But he worked incredible hours, smoked hard and drank hard to numb the pain and tension along the way. He too has a couple of young children who probably see him for a couple of hours on Sundays. Allan is a wealthy man but he also carries debts that Tony couldn't even fathom and stresses that Tony would never understand.

It dawned on me while listening to Tony rave about how great a life Allan must lead that, one can have lots of money but still feel poor. I look at Tony who drives a modest car, lives in a modest home filled with love and happiness and who is assessed by his bank as not being wealthy and you realize that: Wealth is not the state of your bank account but the state of your mind!

How do you define “Wealth”?
How do your family, friends, colleagues and acquaintances define “Wealth”?
Have you come across conflicting points of view on this?

At Sothertons, we are committed to supporting you in [Business] + [Life]; if your would like to talk about your definition of wealth, call us on (07) 4972 1300.

16 April 2013

"Are you travelling overseas or permanently relocating?" Article by Tina Zawila

These days many young (and even older) Australians are taking the opportunity to travel and work overseas.  Usually when they are making the decision to embark on this adventure the last thing on their minds is tax!  However, it is important to consider your taxation obligations, and understand your tax position before you make the final decision on where to go and what to do.

An important consideration is whether you will remain an Australian resident for tax purposes, or establish a permanent place of abode overseas.  It's also important to know whether you will pay tax overseas on your foreign income.  
Broadly, Australian residents for tax purposes are taxed on their worldwide income, whereas non-residents are taxed on their Australian sourced income only.  Therefore, your residency status is critical in determining your taxation obligations.

The primary test for deciding an individual's residency status is where the taxpayer actually "resides", however, how does the ATO determine where someone resides?  The courts, when considering cases on this topic, refer to "continuity of association" and "establishing a domicile of choice elsewhere".  These are questions of fact based on each individual's circumstances. 
Where you have a spouse and/or children, your "continuity of association" will generally be where your family is.  Therefore it is nearly impossible for spouses to establish that they may have two separate countries of residence.
Your "permanent place of abode" is also a critical factor when determining residency.  Case law highlights that it is not enough to be outside Australia for a lengthy period (the ATO has used a rule of thumb of 2 years), but a taxpayer must also illustrate that they have established a permanent place of abode elsewhere (i.e. outside of Australia).  Generally speaking this means you have to stay in one location and establish a "home", as opposed to moving from one location to another, say every few weeks/months.
If you are considering working overseas, it is very important to seek advice and understand the taxation obligations of various scenarios, to avoid any unexpected taxation outcomes.  
Are you planning a trip overseas?
Have you recently returned to Australia after working overseas?
Do you need help determining your help tax obligations?

Call the taxation professionals at Sothertons on 4972 1300 to discuss your travel plans.

10 April 2013

"Uplifting Service" Article by Tina Zawila

Aloha!  I am writing this from beautiful Waikiki, Steve and I are here for the Annual Professional Investment Services conference with around 200 delegates from all around Australia.  For the last three days we have listened to the best speakers in the financial services industry to bring us up to date with the latest technical developments and innovative strategies.  However, rather than bore you with technical information, I thought I would share with you some insights gained from listening to Ron Kaufman. 
Ron is an internationally recognised leading educator and motivator who is devoting his life to "uplifting service".  Ron believes that how we serve each other shapes us as individuals, families, businesses, communities, cities, nations and in fact the world.  His aim is clearly to make the world a better place by improving how we serve.

Ron defines service as "taking action to create value for someone else".   Seems quite simple doesn't it?  Yet who of us can honestly say we give unbelievable service to everyone we encounter each and every day?  Remember, Ron isn't just talking about "customer service" or "client service" he is also talking about "family service", "friend service" in fact he is even talking about "complete stranger service"!
His definition has some key terms to consider.  The word "action" seems pretty obvious, but without "action" then your good idea about serving someone, is just that...an idea!   

Let's talk about "value"...the key here is that the action you take must create “value” to the other person.  If it isn't valuable to them, then you haven't been of service. 

Finally, the key to the definition are the words "someone else".  Serving isn't about you - it's all about the other person.  What they might need, want, desire, or even what may surprise them!  

Imagine a world where we all go about our daily lives looking for ways to serve each other...
Let's start one person at a time, one service opportunity at a time...
Do you take action when you or an employee has a good idea?
What value do you create for your customers/clients?
Have you encountered an inspirational speaker with ideals that inspired you to implement in your life?

At Sothertons, we are waiting to serve you, call us on 4972 1300 and allow us to create value for you.

"Apps are Forever - Part 2" Article by Steve Marsten

I Pad’s are great tools for the business owner on-the-go, who may neither want nor require a heavy-duty laptop. Moreover the iPad can actually be transformed into a very productive device. As I promised last week we should look at the top 5 apps in business.

Although, considering the spectacular numbers of apps in the marketplace, it can be quite overwhelming to pick the perfect one to suit a specific business need.

Business Owners today can get a ton of work done on your iPads. In putting together this list of top applications for businesspeople, we looked for software that was particularly handy for professionals on the go.
FlightTrack offers a lot of information without saddling you with an overwhelming interface. For each flight, it lists the scheduled departure and arrival times; delay information is clearly marked, as well, and you view the aircraft type, departure gate, and scheduled flight time.
Once a flight is in the air, FlightTrack shows the airspeed, radar and current positioning. Very handy given our local skittish flights schedules.
Convert is a unit converter. It has the most common and essential conversions. It’s easy to use with a pleasing user-interface. Simply tap different units to see additional conversion results. The downside is that it does not retain recent conversions.
Voice Memos - Sometimes you have one of those eureka! moments and need to note down your great idea. If you don’t have a pen and paper handy, fear not- you can use the Voice Memo to record voice memos without breaking your train of thought. It’s great in the middle of the night or when you are on the go.
Docs To Go - This is a great way to create and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint. It’s great for compatibility. It has multiple desktop syncing options though there is no attachment syncing with email.
Mastech - An Australian app issued by Macquarie. It lists personal tax rates, superannuation and social security information. This is very handy from time to time when you are dealing with payroll or tax costs.
Have you used any of our Top 5 Business App’s?
Do you use other apps in business which you find to be effective?
What app can’t you live without? Drop us a line and let us know….
At Sothertons we can assist you with obtaining the Apps that make you more efficient in your business.