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As described in the Structure, each chapter is prefaced with the Key Points and a short introduction.  These are shown below. The Key Points repeat the main headings and sub-headings from the Contents listing. 

Chapter 1: Choosing your Options

Self-employment is more suitable for individuals who are independent and want to offer their services as a freelancer to a number of businesses and institutions or are more entrepreneurial streak and want to set up their own business.


Employment, on the other hand, can be suitable for individuals wishing to supplement studies with part-time, term-time, or seasonal work; simply wishing to gain more experience in a paid position; or returning to the work force after a career break.


There is of course a halfway house where financial security or job stability offered by a combination or portfolio of paid employment and self-employment might be more attractive.


Chapter 1 examines employment and self-employment; the differences; the advantages and disadvantages and what you might or can expect.


Employment status Employment rights Employee Employment Contracts Non-resident foreign employment contracts Worker Zero hours contracts Self-employed Test of employment and self-employment Advantages and disadvantages of employment and self-employment Employing staff or contracting freelancers Portfolio careers Entrepreneurship

Chapter 2: Becoming Self-Employed

Self-employed persons can work on their own as own-account workers or with a partner, or on their own or with a partner but engaging employees or freelance contractors.


Chapter 2 considers issues the self-employed need to consider whether starting out as a freelancer offering services to a number of businesses, or starting their own business, and where to look for help.



Planning and research Environmental factors Branding and marketing Setting goals and milestones As a freelancer As a business Getting help

Chapter 3: Writing a Business Plan

A Business Plan can play a key role in the start-up, restructure, or expansion of a business. It defines objectives, strategies, marketing; projects income from fees and operating expenditure, and describes how to achieve these goals.


Identifying the “who, what, why and where” of a business idea provides the basis for a Business Plan.


Chapter 3 explores the structure and content of a Business Plan.



Structure and contents Executive Summary Detailed Plan Presentation

Chapter 4: Choosing a Business Name

The right business name, product name, company name and domain name can be crucial to the success of the business.


Chapter 4 explores some of the issues behind intellectual property assets. and  the differences between a business name and  trademarks. 


Business name Trade marks Registered trade mark Unregistered mark Misrepresentation or passing off Domain name Tag lines Being noticed


Chapter 5: Choosing a Business Structure

The self-employed need to decide on the most appropriate business structure. Some business structures might appear to be more attractive than others. Chapter 5 examines the most common types  of business structure,


The types of business described in Chapter 5 are those of the United Kingdom. Similarities exist in many countries, but appropriate professional advice should always be sought as laws, rules and regulations differ from country to country..



Types of business Sole trader or sole proprietor Partnership – general or simple, limited liability, limited  Company – Ltd., Plc. Registration as self-employed Registration as a company Franchising Charitable status


Chapter 6: Using Financial Tools

Budgets, costing, break-even, cash flow, projections and forecasts are all methods of illustrating financial information, but all differ slightly in their use. Most individuals are probably more familiar with the concepts than they realise. Chapter 6 helps with an understanding of the rudiments of budgeting, costing, breaking-even, cash flow, projections and forecasting.



Budgets Costing Breaking-even Cash flow Inflows Outflows Projections and forecasts


Chapter 7: Costing your Business

The Case Study in Chapter 7 uses a new dance school as the business model; and a cost plus approach to set a budget, determine pricing, break-even, and calculate cash flow, income and funding needs.



Case Study 1: Administration Staffing Volumes Start-up costs Operational costs Fixed, semi-fixed and variable costs Owner earnings and profit Budgeted income and expenditure Breaking-even By unit and by revenue


Chapter 8: Setting Fees

It is important that any business calculate the correct fees or pricing to charge per unit of output. The main unit of output for a dance school will be the cost of attending class for a term or academic year. For other business such as a dance theatre, it will be the seat cost over the length of the production; a dance conference, the cost of attending individual or a series of workshops; or a course provider, the cost of attending the event.


Chapter 8 looks at a number of approaches to setting both class fees and other dance-associated fees.



Class fees: By the hour, by mix, by degree of complexity Consumption tax Reasonableness Other fees: Private lessons and studio rental, summer schools and workshops, merchandise External examinations: managing these costs, acting as agents


Chapter 9: Analysing Cash Flow

Chapter 9 looks at  behaviour of income and expenditure, i.e., the pattern of receipts and payments and the reasons why cash flows might change.   It examines how cash flow analysis can be used in  “What if” scenarios based on  assumptions about volumes, fees, receipts, costs, expenditure and payment. .



Business plan assumptions Income and receipts Receipts and collection profile Expenditure and payments Business expenditure and payment profile Cash flow statements Drawings and savings profile

Chapter 10: Funding

Starting a business requires funds, and sufficient funds to survive until the point at which income continually exceeds expenditure. Chapter 10 looks at potential sources of funding.



Assessing your needs Sources of funds Formal and informal routes

Chapter 11: Paying Taxes

The most common direct taxes are those on Earnings, and the most common indirect taxes are those on Consumption. Other taxes might include forms of wealth tax such as Property and Inheritance; and property tax such as on Rental income or Stamp duty.


Direct taxes affect all taxpayers who earn a salary or make profits whereas indirect taxes are discretionary and only affect those when a purchase is made. Chapter 11 explores the nature of earnings and consumption taxes, the difference between net profits and taxable net profits, and a simplified example of how to determine taxable profits.



Earnings tax: income, corporate and social insurance taxes Consumption tax: value added tax, sales tax, other taxes Determining net profit and taxable profit Allowable and disallowable expenses, use of home, personal use Registration as a taxpayer and for value added and sales tax


Chapter 12: Up and Running

Some types of business entity, activity or sector require appropriate licences, permits to operate.


Chapter 12 explores some issues that business owners may need to be aware of.



Education External examinations Advertising and selling Licensing music Health and safety, and safe dance practice Data protection Other activities Liability insurance Public liability, abuse and molestation, product liability, professional indemnity and employer liability  Other policies


Chapter 13: Operating

A freelancer or business owner needs to exercise business skills in many aspects of the business such as marketing, development, finance and administration. Chapter 13 looks at some of those skills and responsibilities.



Understanding the business Bringing in the business Print, public relations, advertising, promotions, website, email, social media Having a commercial edge Product and services, external regulation, continuing professional development, technology Controlling your money Bank accounts and credit cards, record keeping, budgets and cash flow, pricing, merchandise, technology Controlling your business Customer service, policies and procedures, staffing Unique Selling Propositions


Chapter 14: Complying with the Law

The complexity of legislation and legal frameworks, litigation, and increased scrutiny by governments emphasises the importance of ethical practice and commitment. Increasingly legislation imposes regulations on businesses concerning issues such as Health and Safety, Data Protection, Safeguarding young people and vulnerable adults and Equality and Diversity.


Chapter 14 looks at codes, policies and procedures that dance businesses need to be aware of and examines specimen Statements and Policies relating to these issues.



Code of Conduct and Professional Practice Health and Safety Data Protection Safeguarding young people and vulnerable adults Equality and Diversity Compliance


Chapter 15: Attracting Customers

A School Prospectus can be an excellent way to connect with prospective students and customers and Chapter 15 explores possible content that could be included in a School Prospectus. (A Business Prospectus is usually referred to in the context of the stock market and providing information to prospective investors.)



Welcome statement Aims and ethos Products and services Enrolment procedures Attendance Classes Safeguarding Facilities Fees Code of Customer Behaviour Legal Contact


Chapter 16: Engaging Freelancers

Chapter 16 sets out typical clauses in an agreement made between a business and a freelancer. The content and substance of the clauses are provided to give general guidance regarding the terms on which a dance school might engage a self-employed teacher or conversely what a freelancer might expect in a Contract for Services.


Guidance Terms of engagement Personal details Contract type Remuneration Activity Policies, Codes and Rules and Regulations Cancellation, supply and termination Invoices and payment Indemnity Insurance and licences Jurisdiction


Chapter 17: Using Volunteers

Some businesses will use volunteers. These can vary from students 16+ in higher education to parents and carers helping with open days, school shows, event registrations and selling merchandise. Chapter 17 discusses the advantages of having a Volunteer Policy.



Volunteer Policy Volunteer Agreement


Chapter 18: Expanding

The previous chapters explored many ideas that can be useful for both new and existing businesses.  Chapter 18 looks at some of the issues to consider when expanding an existing dance school, and Case Study 2  illustrates how expansion can change the cost basis and break-even of a business..



Assessing your readiness Sources of growth, retention rates, sustainability, resources Case Study 2: Administration Staffing Volumes Operational costs Owner earnings Cost structure Cash flow Breaking-even By unit and by revenue Approaches to expansion

Chapter 19: Buying  (or Selling) a Business

Dance businesses are often available for sale. Chapter 19 explores the issues behind buying or selling a business.



Considerations when buying, selling, closing down Setting a price Definition of value Elements of value Valuation techniques Calculating value Multiple of earnings Multiple of turnover Students on the register Negotiation techniques Franchises

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