Negotiation, like networking, is one of life’s necessities that you either love or hate. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Let’s face it, negotiation is almost an everyday business affair – whether you’re negotiating a new business deal, scoping out a statement of work with a client, or trying to reach consensus with a business partner, client or employee. How do your negotiations typically go? Are they calm affairs? Do you often reach a satisfactory consensus? Here are some tips for effective negotiation in...
Got a great business idea? Already tested your product or market? All you need now is an injection of cash to help you realize your business dream? Maybe now’s the time to approach an angel investor or venture capital (VC) firm. But how can you get the attention of investors, prepare for your presentation and be sure you have all your financial models vetted and ready to share? Here is a cross-section of tips from a variety of experts who’ve sat on both sides of the table. Finding Investors If you aren’t sure where to start,...
Small businesses are known for their philanthropic gestures. In fact, surveys suggest that 75 percent of small firms donate to charities each year, averaging a contribution of six percent of their profits. Women-owned businesses tend to donate an average of 10 percent of profits, and those with the highest revenues are, not surprisingly, the most generous. (Source) Contributing to a worthwhile cause has many benefits beyond the act of goodwill itself. It gives local business owners an opportunity to embed themselves in the community and...
“Cash is King,” the old axiom goes, and it is true both in personal and business finance. Whether you are the proud owner of an active, successful company, or just taking the first steps toward your dream business, financing your venture takes center stage. While the nation’s economy is slowly but surely recovering from the Great Recession, many businesses are still in a financial bind that makes it difficult for them to grow and create more jobs. Does this scenario sound familiar: Accounts payable mounting, new projects on...
Have you considered dispensing with your cash register or offering more flexible payment options for your customers? If you’ve ever purchased anything from an Apple store, you’ll recall that they don’t have a single cash register on the premises. Instead, all payment transactions are conducted by Apple’s employees using mobile devices. But Apple isn’t the only one in on the act. More and more small business owners are turning to mobile payment platforms on site and on the road. And with smartphone use at an all-...
Do you know your business credit score? Feel unnerved about relying on your personal credit score for business transactions? As a business owner, taking steps to separate your personal and business finances is a smart strategy. Obviously, this means implementing a strategy to build good credit in your company’s name. What is Business Credit? Business credit is much like your own personal credit score – it’s a proxy for your business’ ability to repay its debts. When you start a business, this type of credit may not be...
Applying for a business loan and securing its approval can be a lengthy process. The actual approval time varies widely depending on the type of loan, its complexity, and the borrower’s timeliness providing the necessary information. This guide from SBA can help you gather the right paperwork, whether you’re applying for an SBA loan or a regular business loan. But knowing exactly what you’re signing up for is just as important as rounding up the details and completing the paperwork accurately. If you’ve ever purchased a...
If you are looking for capital to finance your startup or business growth, many signs suggest that lending markets are showing renewed vigor. Earlier this spring, for example, SBA Administrator Karen Mills blogged about the new signs of strength in business lending. Among the positives, Mills noted that: Thanks to the Recovery Act and the Small Business Jobs Act, SBA had a record year in FY2011, supporting more than $30 billion in small business lending across the country. The FDIC recently released data showing that banks had...
Whether you run a small business or a multi-million dollar corporation, marketing is essential to your profitability and growth. Yet many small businesses don’t allocate enough money to marketing or, worse, spend it haphazardly. I recently got to know a business that was investing heavily in developing a hip, niche product to add to its already very cool product line. Seemed like a sure winner. However, it quickly became apparent that product development had occurred in a silo, while sales and marketing were off doing their own thing....
Are you looking for financial and business management tips and advice to help get your business off the ground? If so, there is a new tool to add to your small business tool belt. Money Smart for Small Business is a brand new training for new and aspiring business owners that introduces you to the day-to-day operations, organization and planning of a business from a financial standpoint. Money Smart for Small Business, created with you – the entrepreneur – in mind, is an instructor-led financial education curriculum to help you...
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