Study a Business Diploma from Home
at your own pace.
Running a business is a day to day task - it will not run itself. Goals need to be set and decisions need to be made in order to achieve these goals. In the daily operation of a business, some days will challenge you and some will inspire you. Most of them however will be just part of the daily routine of normal business operations.
The following are the three key areas in operating a small business:
- Management process – staff management; hiring the right people, training, how to get the best results from the people you hire.
- Business strategy – defines your short and long term goals in relation to achieving targeted turnover and profit.
- Business operations – the means by which you achieve set goals i.e. resources, tools, business plans and set procedures.
Note that each module in the Qualification - Associate Diploma in Business is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.
LEARN MORE (click below on courses or books of interest)
Courses offered by ACS Distance Education include-
Ebooks written by our academic faculty, may be purchased and immediately downloaded though our online store -
ARE YOU READY FOR BUSINESS?
(Tips from our tutors)
Many people go into business because they want to work with something they love doing. Perhaps you are passionate about sport; and that is making you think about setting up a sporting business; or maybe you love cooking, and that has led you to seriously think about setting up a catering business.
Having knowledge of and passion for something is certainly an advantage, but only if that thing is also a good business prospect.
Consider Your Options
You need to decide:
1. The scale of business you wish to start.
2. Whether you will offer services or products (or both).
3. The amount of resources you want to invest.
4. The amount of risk you wish to take.
5. The industry you will operate in.
6. Your target market.
If you have come up with a simple sentence or one word answer to these points, you probably (or almost definitely) haven’t thought about this enough. You need to think carefully about what you want to do. You might think, well, I work, so I’m going to start this business in my spare time and see how it goes. That may be great, but what about all the time you are spending doing this, think about other things you should be doing, costs you might incur by not doing them and so on. You really need to sit down and consider in detail what exactly you want to do before you start. Take a simple example; you decide to spend every Saturday working on your business. Because of this, you don’t have time to do decorating in your home, so you employ a decorator. This costs you £1000. Your business never takes off, you never make any money, but it has already effectively cost you £1000 as you had to pay the decorator for what you didn’t have time to do.
This may sound like a really silly example to you, but many people set off into business without REALLY considering the costs financially, physically and emotionally to themselves of doing so.
Before starting your business, think seriously about the costs of this for your:
- loss of time with family
- loss of time to do other things
- the actual cost of the business itself
- costs incurred by the business for advertising
- additional costs incurred because you are spending time on the business eg. decorating, house maintenance, child
Costs in terms of relationships
- the effect of stress on your behaviour
- less time to spend with family and friends
Before doing anything else, you need to sit down and really consider all the implications of what you intend to do. If you have a busy life now, how are you going to do this? We are not trying to say don’t set up your own business, just that you should be aware of what you are taking on. As we said above, passion is a good starting point, but it is not enough, the practicalities of starting a business also need to be considered.
So when you are ready and have thought more about what you want to do, also consider:
- Things you are passionate about, have knowledge of, have experience with (either as an amateur or professional) and would be inclined to work with.
- Resources you have at your disposal –time, money, expertise, physical facilities (equipment, property, buildings/rooms).
Scale of Business
Businesses that start slow and small, may never gain sufficient momentum to grow beyond anything small.
Businesses that start big can have greater potential to grow, and that growth is potentially faster.
If you start big, you risk losing more if a business fails; and you risk having a business that is moving faster than what you are able to keep up with.
If you start small and slow; you are more likely to notice problems that arise, and correct those problems before they threaten the viability of your business.
Some types of businesses are small, part time ventures, requiring little initial investment in time or money; but this type of business may never achieve the momentum to provide a significant income. A small scale business can generate extra income as a “side-line” to other work and that might be enough for what you want. With the growth of eBay, Amazon and other similar sites, many people have set up small businesses “on the side” eg. The architect who also runs his own business selling books on Amazon. Or the childminder who also runs a business selling children’s clothing on eBay and so on.
Some of these businesses who start small like this can grow into large businesses. The internet and magazines are full of people who started off small and their business took off. There are also obviously many many more who are not successful.
There may be less risk if you start slow and build a business gradually.
ACS follows the old fashioned idea that “the student comes first”. Our staff are told to treat every student as an individual and respond promptly to their enquiries; and the facilities we have developed and continue to develop, are all focused on that goal. Facilities include:
- Offices in two time zones (UK and Australia) –which means an international team of academics are responding to students 5 days a week and 16 hours a day.
- An online student room with unique resources that are only available to students studying our courses, including online library.
- Bookshop offering quality downloadable e books
- A data base of 20 million words of unique information written by our staff over 3 decades that can be drawn upon if needed by academics for use in supporting our students.
- Systems that ensure assignments are tracked, marked and returned to students, fast -commonly within a round 1 week & rarely more than 2 weeks (note: many other colleges take longer).
- The school is active in social networking and encourages students to connect with us and each other.
- No automated handling of student phone enquiries. When you call you get a real person; or leave a message and a real person will call you back within a day, but more commonly within an hour or two.
- No additional charges for extra tutor support over the phone or email.
- Free careers advice for graduates –It is our policy to provide support and advice to our students even after they graduate. If a graduate needs help with getting a CV together, or advice on setting up a business or looking for work; they only need ask.
- The quality of academic staff is higher than many other colleges.
How our Courses Differ
- Courses are continually improved –we invite feedback from all graduates and change courses immediately the need is detected.
- Courses are relevant to the whole world –we try hard to teach make the learning transferable to any region or country because the world is increasingly a global economy
- Courses written by our staff, teach different skills to standard courses; giving a unique mix of skills and knowledge to provide a career advantage. Do you want an accredited certificate and the same skills as 100 other job applicants; or one of our courses with skills that no other applicants have?
- Certificates and diplomas are longer. They teach you more, and our qualifications have built a reputation amongst academics and industry as being a very high standard for this reason.
- We are focused on helping you learn in a way that improves your capacity to understand your discipline, apply knowledge, and continue learning and developing your capabilities beyond your course.
These things cannot be always said of other colleges.
Study alone can never guarantee career success; but a good education is an important starting point.
Success in a career depends upon many things. A course like this is an excellent starting point because it provides a foundation for continued learning, and the means of understanding and dealing with issues you encounter in the workplace.
When you have completed an ACS course, you will have not only learnt about the subject, but you will have been prompted to start networking with experts in the discipline and shown how to approach problems that confront you in this field.
This and every other industry in today’s world is developing in unforeseen ways; and while that is unsettling for anyone who wants to be guaranteed a particular job at the end of a particular course; for others, this rapidly changing career environment is offering new and exciting opportunities almost every month.
If you want to do the best that you can in this industry, you need to recognise that the opportunities that confront you at the end of a course, are probably different to anything that has even been thought of when you commence a course.