How to turn your hobby into a business

Thinking about turning your passion into a paying gig? These steps will help you avoid some common mistakes as you set out to earn an income from your favorite pastime. Do you have what it takes? Unless you’ve run a business before, it’s easy to get carried away with the idea of how perfect it will be to get paid for doing what you love. Reality check: the stress of…  Read more

How to create good habits in business

If you’re like most small business owners, there are never enough hours in the day to complete every task on your list. Often you’re faced with prioritizing what you need to do right now – deal with a customer, meet a deadline, attend an event – and the things you know you should do for the ongoing growth of your business. Scheduling time to attend to these business activities on…  Read more

Why banks won’t lend to a business

How to obtain financing is a common concern for new businesses and those preparing to scale. Getting approved for a business loan or line of credit is more difficult than qualifying for a personal loan. It’s crucial that small business owners are adequately prepared to meet with a lender to present their business in the best possible light and qualify for the money they need. Here’s what you can do…  Read more

Using blogs to improve your business

Showcasing a business online is an increasingly effective tool for attracting new customers. Blogging is a great way to start to communicate with your target audience. Blogs are highly effective tools for sharing your expertise with others, increasing web traffic and brand awareness, and for attracting and interacting with new customers. WordPress and Blogger are free web hosting platforms that make blogging available to businesses of all sizes. What is…  Read more

Growth hacks for your small business

Deciding on an online marketing plan can be overwhelming for small business owners looking for affordable ways to nurture steady, sustainable growth. With time in short supply, the key is to find one or two growth strategies that will get results at minimal cost. These proven growth hacks offer business owners a few simple, cost-effective ideas for attracting new customers, increasing brand awareness, and ultimately, getting more sales. Build your…  Read more

12 Essential Tips for Delivering Effective Training Courses

Effective training of staff is essential to ensure they develop in their roles and are able to be as productive as possible. The business will need training to be cost effective and meet learning objectives, so as a facilitator of training it’s important to get it right first time. These 12 tips cover all the critical areas you must consider to ensure your training delivery is top notch and fully…  Read more

3 Mistakes That Strangle Growing Businesses

Businesses want to grow and help a larger audience, but too many make mistakes that cripple their growth. Even worse, they keep repeating them! Don’t do the same; avoid the blunders outlined below. Hiring Toxic Personalities Businesses hire more staff as they grow. But if they expand too quickly, they will feel pressure to fill positions on their team, even if the job candidates have a few personality flaws. While…  Read more

5 PayPal Alternatives to Send and Receive Money Online

PayPal is the world leading online payment service. You can transfer money to and from your bank account, pay for goods, and even receive payments worldwide. It’s a useful tool for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and even for personal use. However, it does have its drawbacks. PayPal takes a significant chunk of money when it comes to converting and billing international payments. You could end up losing about 5% of your cash…  Read more

Collaboration best practices for remote teams

Teams thrive when individuals play to their unique strengths, uniquely contributing to a shared, greater goal. But if you and your teammates are working at different times of the day, in different parts of the world, the team will need to work together a little differently. What does effective collaboration look like in a distributed team like this? The challenges of collaborating in a distributed team A distributed team is…  Read more

Improving your business with better time management

When things are hectic, most small business owners wish they could find a way to get more than 24 hours into a day. Often, your ‘to-do’ list can get so long that you feel you never get to put as much attention into every task as you would like. It can also mean more time in the office or dealing with work issues after-hours – cutting into your free time…  Read more

How to Survive the Emotional and Financial Devastation of a Job Loss

The loss of a job is one of the most devastating things a person can go through. The results of a job loss can be long lasting and the implications go far beyond the financial. While losing your job will most likely put your financial life at risk, the emotional consequences can be just as damaging. When you consider that most of us spend more time at our jobs than…  Read more

Tips for choosing a small business bank

Finding the right bank to serve your small business needs can be a daunting task. With so many competing financial institutions to choose from, business owners simply don’t have the time for the in-depth research required to carefully weigh all the options. This guide to choosing a small business bank will help you narrow down your choices so you find the best fit for you. Small, medium, or large? You…  Read more

Should you bill by the hour or offer fixed rate packages?

If you’re like most freelancers, knowing how to price your services can be a real struggle. Charging an hourly rate can feel less scary than asking for a higher priced fixed rate package because you know you’ll be compensated for every hour you spend on a project. But there are drawbacks to trading time for money – not the least of which is that it limits your earning potential. Read…  Read more

When You Should Consider Hiring a Business Lawyer

When you run a small business, every cent counts. It can be difficult to spend money on anything you don’t consider vital. Hiring a lawyer during key times in your small business might seem like an unnecessary expense, but the money you spend now on a business attorney could save you time, money, and energy in the long run and could protect your business. When it comes to your small…  Read more

Bookkeeping Basics for Small Business Owners

On average, small business owners spend 10 hours each week recording, organizing, and processing financial transactions – everything from accounts receivable and payable, to employee payments, expense receipts and supplier invoices. While the process may be time-consuming (and tedious!), effective bookkeeping is the foundation of sound financial management – which in turn, is the lifeblood of your business. Feeling overwhelmed by mountains of paperwork and complex calculations? Here are three…  Read more

The advantages of a business dashboard

Business dashboards are a valuable business intelligence tool, offering an “at-a-glance” big picture view of a company’s performance. Some business owners use a dashboard to track KPIs relevant to just one aspect of their business, such as sales growth, marketing, or financial data. Others rely on an executive dashboard for an overview of data culled from various sources (e.g. their accounting software, CRM tools, and website analytics). The great advantage…  Read more

Why giving back is good for your business

If your business hasn’t made it a habit to support a good cause, here’s why you should: giving back does more than make a difference in your community. Participating in charitable activities can have a positive impact on your staff, your customers and your bottom line. Customers want to support companies that demonstrate a commitment to more than earning a profit. A 2010 study by Cone Marketing showed that 85…  Read more

Workable New Year resolutions

New Year resolutions – we’ve all made them, and broken them − often before the end of January. There’s something about New Year celebrations that makes us yearn for a fresh start, but is there a way to make that desire for change more permanent? Here’s a twist that can make your resolutions more durable, more beneficial and less prone to that embarrassing quick fade. Align goals to your business…  Read more

Enjoying a stress-free holiday

As a business owner it’s important to take time away from work. But worrying about whether staff are meeting deadlines and suppliers are happy translates to more stress and less time enjoying your holiday. With a little staff communication and planning beforehand, you needn’t worry that your business won’t be able to cope in your absence. If you really can’t switch off from work mode or something urgent pops up,…  Read more

The True Value of Networking

There are all kinds of groups dedicated to networking. Some are highly structured with performance requirements, exclusive membership, and the payment of dues. Others are free form, come as you please and no charge. Not every group is right for every kind of business. You will find that some groups may simply not have connections in the market you are seeking to attract. You will find some groups have rules…  Read more

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