Chapter 10. Selling fivers for a tenner – why margins matter most

In terms of the skills they bring to the party, entrepreneurs are a disparate group of people. Some are natural salespeople, others born managers and strategists who prefer to leave the direct selling to partners or employees, while in this high-tech age an increasing number are technologists hawking good ideas. One talent that isn't always present is an easy familiarity with the numbers that appear on the monthly management reports or the annual accounts.

And if you run a fast-growth business, this can be a serious handicap. As sales rise, costs often escalate as well. Apparently healthy headline sales and profit figures can disguise serious problems ranging from escalating costs ...

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