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try http://www.12manage.com/i_fi.html, which has an enormous number of arti-
cles on business and finance matters and a good index. Using a search engine,
such as Google, to pursue key terms and then following links on websites that
come up can reveal very useful articles. These are often posted on university
websites as course materials.
It is always worth trying online versions of the financial press for information,
such as:
www.managementtoday.com
www.ft.com
www.economist.com.
Blogs are a very personal taste and vary in quality. The ideal way to use them is
to keep a note of ones that are helpful and to pursue, in turn, the links they give to
blogs they like. In this way you can rapidly build a network of helpful sites. Google
provides a specialist search tool for blogs on the top left of their normal search
page. An example of one I chanced across is http://businesstoolsblog.com/
Advisers and consultants
As with books, there are many financial consultants out there, I am myself, and
every accountancy firm will provide financial advice. Although each individual
may take a slightly different approach, the message of this book is that consider-
ing the key financial issues discussed here should give a good indication of the
health of the business. What it will necessarily do is highlight particular problems
or opportunities relating to the business strategy, marketing, human resources or
operational issues. It is often the dispassionate outsider in the form of an adviser
or consultant who can make those connections or can speak the truth that insid-
ers may find difficult to do. If, through the financial prism, company management
can identify areas that need to be thought through there may be a call for a
broader consultancy perspective that may also come through practices associ-
ated with the larger accountancy firms or through specialist strategy consultants
such as McKinsey, Bain and Co, or many others.
Courses
UK business schools have a wide range of financial management courses that
will touch on different aspects of the financial issues discussed here. These range
from full-time MBAs, through part-time courses to short or evening courses. Some
of the leading institutions are:
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London Business School
Cass Business School
Cranfield University
Ashridge Business School.
Entering the words ‘finance courses’ into a search engine will reveal many others
but I urge readers to choose courses with a practical approach: whilst it is impor-
tant to know the theories, these are useless if they dont actually work in the
messy world we live and work in.

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