Airing Your Accounts Receivable Problems In A Public Manner

accounts receivableAs pointed out in the Wall Street Journal article “Web Site Lets Businesses Expose Deadbeat Customers“, there is a new way to vent your frustrations towards non-paying customers.   The website, Uradeadbeat.com, gives you an avenue to post complaints about customers or businesses that owe you money.

I can’t seem to decide where I stand on this idea.   On one hand, this may be a good way to get someone to respond to you that normally you could not get into contact with.   If they get upset, maybe they will contact you and you will be able to work out some sort of payment schedule.…

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Would Your Spouse Make A Good Business Partner?

business partnersStarting a business with a friend or member of your family isn’t always the best choice.   I’ve asked for your opinions on such topics as “Do Family Members Make Good Employees?” and “Would Your Parent Make An Ideal Employee?”.   Now, I have one last thought to get your opinion on.   Would you start a small business with your spouse or significant other?

I don’t know about you, but I could never work with my husband, let alone run a business together.   We both have very different opinions and a bit of a stubborn streak that would not blend well if we worked side by side.  …

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Introducing Your Products To Wholesale Buyers

Coming up with a unique and marketable product is only half of  the battle.   Once you have your products ready for market, how do you find the right buyers?   What if your product doesn’t sell very well locally but you are confident enough to know it will sell elsewhere?   Expanding your customer base worldwide by selling to wholesale buyers is a great way to extend your reach.

Stephanie Cartwright, co-founder of MyWares.com, was the interviewed guest expert last week on Small Business Trends Radio.   Stephanie offered really great tips and advice on how to start offering your products to wholesale buyers.  …

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“Suit Up” For Small Business

volatile market cartoonMark Anderson, creator of the cartoon website Andertoons.com, shares one of his  business cartoons with readers of Small Business Trends every Friday morning. I got a really good kick out of today’s cartoon about volatile markets and thought I would share it with you here.   To see the full view of the cartoon, click on the cartoon image on the left.

This cartoon seems really timely to me since everyone is taking a beating these days.   Whether in business or in our personal lives, we could all use protection from the bumps and bruises the less than favorable economy has given us lately.…

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Attracting Shoppers To Your Business This Holiday Season

attracting holiday shoppersWe are not that far away from the start of the holiday shopping season.   It’s hard to believe, but in a month or two holiday shopping will be in full swing.   With the economy in the shape it is now, most consumers will be cutting back considerably.   So, have you decided how your small business will attract those much needed customers?

John Tozzi, a writer for BusinessWeek.com, gives us some idea of how small business owners can compete with the big box retailers this holiday season.   John suggests that you focus on your loyal customers instead of targeting new ones.   Give your best customers special holiday discounts and the best customer service possible to encourage increased spending within your business.  …

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Having A Personal Emergency Plan For Your Business

emergency.jpgWe all know that when things just start to go smoothly, it usually doesn’t last very  long.   Personal emergencies with yourself or family members can pop up out of nowhere.   Given the choice, of course you have to tend to the crisis first.   But where does that leave your business?   Who will take over where you leave off?   What happens if you can’t attend to your small business for days on end?

Bonnie Price, a contributor to WomenEntrepreneur.com, suggests keeping an up to date binder with all of your small business’ critical information.   Bonnie provides a helpful list, of information your binder should contain, in  her article “Keep Your Business Humming Amid A Personal Crisis“.  …

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Build Your Brand On A Budget

So, you have a small business and you’re trying to build your brand from the ground up.   What  steps can you take to  establish your own well known brand with limited funds?   SEOBook.com has published a list of 11 ideas and resources for building your brand.  

The article mentions  reputation as  one of the ways to  strenghthen your brand.   Reputation is one of those things that can  make or break your business.   At the beginning of your journey, it  is so important to keep an untarnished reputation in order to grow your company.   It’s impossible to ask consumers to  put faith in your unfamiliar brand when you have a less than perfect  track record.…

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StartupNation’s 2008 Home-Based 100 Competition Is Underway

istock_000002517308xsmall1.jpgStartupNation has just announced their second annual Home-Based 100 Competition  sponsored by Microsoft Office Live Small Business.   The top 100 home-based entrepreneurs will be ranked in 10 very unique  categories.   The categories are: best financial performers, most innovative, boomers back in business, greenest, yummiest, wackiest, grungiest, recession busters, most slacker friendly, and most glamorous.   Entries will be taken until midnight Pacific time on September 30, 2008.   The top 100 winners will be announced mid-November.

If you would just like to browse thru the current nominees and place your votes, you can do so here.   There are a lot of interesting small businesses to vote for.  …

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Would Your Parent Make an Ideal Employee?

An interesting topic was brought up in a recent Business Week article, “Should You Hire Your Parents?“.   Different experiences from each side of the debate are stated in the article.    I don’t know about you, but I think hiring your parents could create tension within the family unit.  

Obviously keeping the roles defined between the parent and the  son or daughter is most important.   Daniel Negari, one of the entrepreneurs interviewed for the article, states  that he only refers to his mother at work by her name.   He never uses the term  “mom” or “mother” while in the office environment.  …

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Better Leadership Thru Communication

I haven’t had much experience with different employers or managers but I have had enough interaction to realize it is a difficult responsibility.  Every manager has their own opinions about how to interact with their employees.  Whether their actions, or lack thereof, have positive or negative effects on their employees is a matter of opinion.   Unfortunately, most leaders don’t communicate with their employees enough to know how effective their leadership skills really are.  

Without proper communication, how do you know if you are getting the best performance possible from your employees?  Do they completely understand what is expected of them?    Errors and misunderstandings are avoidable.  …

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