All Articles Tagged "small business"

Time To Shut It Down: End Of Year Prep Tips For Your Small Business

December 5th, 2013 - By Tanvier Peart
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Congratulations on making it another year small business owner! If this is your first year in business, raise a glass of Champagne and celebrate your company launch in 2013! For that reason alone, it’s been a good year.

Now that we are almost finished with the final quarter of the year, it’s a good idea to start getting ready for the new year. But before you jump ahead to 2014, there are certain preparations and things that need to be in place to bring 2013 to a proper close. Here the steps you should take at the end of the year to prep your small business for the 12 months to come.

The 5 People You Need In Your Entrepreneurial Circle

December 4th, 2013 - By Madame Noire
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From Black Enterprise 

Your connections in the business community are critical to the success and sustainability of your small business. You network can provide valuable contacts, opportunities for deals, and crucial knowledge about best practices. Networking is one of the key principals of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program and 76% of its graduates are now actively working together to better grow and manage their businesses, reports the HuffingtonPost.com.

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is a $500 million investment to help entrepreneurs create jobs and economic opportunity by providing them with greater access to education, financial capital and business support services. The ever expanding program is currently operating in Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, Long Beach, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York, Philadelphia and Salt Lake City.

In the program, participants are taught that networking should always be focused around a key goal, whether that’s increasing sales, expanding into new markets, or raising awareness about your business. For instance, if you’re planning to expand product distribution into a new region and you can connect with someone with logistical experience in that area, then that could help you meet your warehousing and transportation needs or put you in touch with suitable vendors.

Ideally, you want to create and sustain an entrepreneurial network that supports your business through good and bad times.

According to the HuffingtonPost, here are five of the types of people you want in your network to help grow the business:

1. The Veteran: Someone who’s been long established in their field and knows the ins and outs of an industry can be a huge asset, particularly if your business is relatively young. Knowing someone with years of experience can help you understand the challenges you’ll be facing down the road and how to tackle them.

2. The Innovator: If you’re looking for ways to stay on the cutting-edge, try to find an early-adopter with tech expertise who can keep you informed about the latest platforms and tools that can improve your operations.

Read more at BlackEnterprise.com 

Make Sure You Give Uncle Sam His Due! Here Are Tips For Your Estimated Taxes

December 3rd, 2013 - By Tanvier Peart
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Working for yourself can have wonderful perks as you are your own boss, you call the shots and you get to pursue the dream of entrepreneurship. Yet there are parameters we must function within in order to stay in the good graces of the government. One requirement that is pretty mandatory is paying estimated taxes throughout the year.  But what happens if you don’t? What are the consequences and what should one do if they find themselves in this predicament? Here are some tips on what to do if you’re short on estimated taxes.

Help Out The Little Guy: The Benefits Of Small Business Saturday

November 27th, 2013 - By Tanvier Peart
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According to American Express, Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to supporting the endeavors of small businesses. Founded in 2010 by the credit card giant, Small Business Saturday occurs the Saturday after each Thanksgiving. Small businesses and entrepreneurship  are the cornerstone to our society as even the smallest of dreams can turn into something extraordinary. How many times have we heard stories about a mom and pop shop hitting it big, eventually launching multiple locations and even branching out to franchise opportunities?

Regardless how big or small a business gets, it’s important to support their endeavors as our commerce gives them a chance to succeed. Here are the benefits of Small Business Saturday. Hopefully you will allocate some of your Black Friday and Cyber Monday dollars to the little guy.

Get Your Business Holiday Ready

November 19th, 2013 - By Michelle Alerte
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Many business owners are eagerly awaiting the effects of the holiday season on sales. October to New Year’s marks the busiest shopping period in the United States and any sensible owner should remain a step ahead to reap the full benefits. Whether revenue becomes slow during this time and you need to batten down the hatches until it passes or there is an impressive explosion of profit, you’ll need to prepare for the upcoming seasonal changes. The following tips are geared toward helping you gain and hold customer attention and make the most of the holiday shopping frenzy.

Signs You Need To End Your Business Partnership

November 18th, 2013 - By Madame Noire
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From Black Enterprise 

Partnerships fail for many reasons. Misalignment of personality is possibly the first reason that springs to mind, but according to the Michigan law firm Family & Aging Law Center, the two most common reasons that business partnerships fail is 1) failure to make an adequate plan, and 2) more importantly, from a legal perspective, failure to have a written partnership agreement that outlines in detail the partnership structure.

When it’s time to end a partnership, navigating the process can be difficult. The Small Business Association recently published the article: “Is It Time to End Your Business Partnership? Here’s How.”

Without a partnership agreement, dissolving a partnership can get nasty and carry a lot of risk. For example, if a partner isn’t paying bills on time or making regular contributions to pay off a business loan. Lapses and disagreements like these can quickly spiral out of control and impact your creditworthiness, relationships with vendors and so on.

Read more at BlackEnterprise.com 

Staying Motivated: 10 Inspiring Books Every Entrepreneur Should Read

November 8th, 2013 - By Tanvier Peart
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Whether you are an accomplished business owner or just starting the initial stages of creating a business, nothing can be quite as exciting as pursuing the American dream. Who wouldn’t want a shot at being their own boss or turning a vision into profit? It does sound nice.

One thing that all entrepreneurs and future entrepreneurs need is encouragement as the road to success is never guaranteed or perfectly laid out. Some may turn to various media for the necessary motivation to keep going. Here are 10 inspiring books every entrepreneur should read.

Low Overhead, High Demand: Small Businesses You Can Start In Your Home

October 24th, 2013 - By Michelle Alerte
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With a shaky economy that’s still trying to right itself, it’s even more important for aspiring small business owners to invest in ideas that require very little initial capital, including educational investment. Taking lots of courses and pursuing advanced degrees can be costly! Below you’ll find nine areas that show great potential and won’t deplete your pockets.

Skip These 9 Common Pitfalls When Starting A New Business

October 20th, 2013 - By Michelle Alerte
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Thinking of starting a business? You’ve probably stewed over the idea, written out a business plan, and begun to debate the pros and cons of a variety of decisions with people you trust. You’re headed in the right direction. But knowing that many new businesses fail within the first five years, it behooves you to keep an eye open to the common pitfalls that could lure even the best small business owner. You’re in luck! Below is a list of nine common mistakes small business owners make. Print it out, study it, and when you find yourself headed towards a trap… run!

Small Business-Friendly Cities: Where To Move Your Startup For Success

October 11th, 2013 - By Ann Brown
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According to the U.S. Small Business Administration more than 50 percent of small businesses fail in the first five years. The stats aren’t too encouraging, but there may be something you can do to give your new firm a fighting chance.

Want to give your small business a better chance of thriving? Move. Some cities are more small business-friendly according to a new report from credit card comparison website CardHub.

CardHub’s study examined the 30 largest metropolitan areas around the country and ranked each city’s small business work environment based on 10 criteria, including small business job growth, salaries for new hires, cost of living and stress index, reports The Huffington Post.

The list is surprising. Minneapolis and San Antonio, for example, beat out Los Angeles and Chicago to make the top 10. And bankrupt Detroit came in last out of all 30 cities.

Phoenix and Riverside, Calif.,  were among the cities with the fastest growing small business communities, but they ranked among the bottom 10 for work environment. Here are the top three:

1. Denver: Number of businesses with 20 employees or less–51,938
2. Boston: Number of businesses with 20 employees or less–84,781
3. Minneapolis: Number of businesses with 20 employees or less–61,523
In the top 10, Kansas City landed in the last slot. It has 32,875 businesses with 20 employees or less.