One of the most misunderstood (and vilified) elements in applying for a loan, any loan, are those pesky fees that seem to pop up all over the place and may add up to a significant amount. If you’re anything like me, they make me cringe, roll my eyes and blow out steam, as I see them as just a cunning way of the bank to get Joe Borrower, that is, me, coming and going. Worst of all, they are unavoidable. Clearly, understanding those fees will go a long way toward helping you face the loan application process with a clearer view of what you...
Looking for a private equity firm or venture capitalist to fund and assist your business growth? Not sure where to start? If you’re a small business owner looking for an investor, here are five tips for finding and attracting the right investors. 1. Understand the Difference Between Private Equity, Venture Capital, and Angel Investing The term venture capital is often used in conversation to mean money invested by a third-party in high-growth start-ups. However, there are several types of investors with slightly different...
Do you know which tax year is right for your business? Should you report your income and expenses on a calendar year or a fiscal year? One of the biggest mistakes small business owners make during the start-up phase is overlooking and/or misunderstanding their tax obligations. Knowing which tax year to operate within is one of them. What is a tax year? Every small business owner must figure out their taxable income based on an accounting period called a tax year—the most common being the calendar year, but businesses can also report...
Written by Caron Beesley Flooding is the number one natural hazard in the U.S. It doesn’t matter where your business is located, it can still be at risk from hurricanes, flash floods, blocked storm sewers, snow melt, and so on, and unfortunately the devastation can be costly. According to the National Flood Insurance Program, almost 40 percent of small businesses never reopen their doors following a disaster because just a few inches of water can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage and close your doors long enough to lose your...
What do successful companies like Symantec, Qualcomm and ViaSat have in common? They’ve all used the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to develop their technology-driven businesses. Qualcomm, for example, used SBIR grants during its initial years, eventually growing to employ over 17,000 people. Symantec grew out of an SBIR research project that led to the company’s Norton Internet security products—and the creation of over 18,000 jobs in 40 countries. Can your company benefit from this program? In this post,...
By Dennis Byrne Years ago I left my job with a major energy company that had reorganized. Like some of my colleagues who were also searching for opportunity in equally green or greener pastures I looked into owning my own small business. Unlike my Mom, who owned two successful small businesses for some 40 years, I wasn’t just going to simply take a leap of faith like she did and expect to be equally successful. My appetite for risk wasn’t quite the same as hers. The first and most important thing I learned after many meetings with...
If you are looking to get more from your business space, boost employee morale, and save money – then flexible working environments might be worth a look. What are flexible working environments? Unfortunately in the work space, the term “flexible” can invoke negative connotations such as lots of free time, perks and a “free for all” environment. But a flexible work space is far from that and includes such practices as flex time, telework, hot desking and consolidated work spaces. All of which can lower the cost of...
Few things in life are as exhilarating as starting a business, particularly if you are a young entrepreneur with an exciting business concept and the world at your feet! Many factors go into making a business a success, but one of the most challenging areas, particularly for young entrepreneurs is financial management. Whether it’s securing capital, separating personal finances from business finances, or managing cash-flow, there are a number of pitfalls that lay in the way of even the most prepared entrepreneur. Here are some tips...
QR-codes are multi-dimensional barcodes that can be read by barcode scanner applications available on most newer smartphones, or they can be downloaded for free online. According to Nielsen.com we are at the beginning of a new wireless era where smartphones will become the standard device consumers will use to connect to friends, the Internet and the world at large. The increase will be so rapid, that by the end of 2011, Nielsen expects more smartphones in the U.S. market than feature phones. With the rise of smart phones overtaking...
Are you considering outsourcing your payroll function? If you find you don’t have enough hours in the day to take care of your business operations, your clients and your employees, outsourcing key business functions such as payroll can be a cost-effective business strategy. In fact, payroll is the first function many small business owners look to outsourcing. Why Outsource Payroll? Managing payroll is an especially time consuming and detail-oriented task that can quickly consume even the savviest business owner. Some of the...
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Loans, grants, taxes, and financial tips for your business.
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