Posts Tagged ‘small business’
Before I decide what’s for dinner I turn to my handy Groupon, Half Off Depot and Living Social Apps. The ”Deal Site” craze has taken over and has forced us to rethink the idea of paying full price for restaurants and yoga classes.
Just as you search for the best dining deals you now have the opportunity to search for daily deals for your small business. Here are a few deal sites that I have recently found. Happy Shopping!
1. GroupPrice Recently named Entrepreneur Magazine’s Top 100 BrilliantCompanies of 2011. GroupPrice offers B2B deals focused on software and services to help small businesses
2. Rapidbuyr Another great deal site focusing on B2B services offering up to 80% discounts for you to enjoy.
3. Bizy Started in Chicago in March 2011, Bizy offers 50% off business services to assist with the cost of business operations.
Here are a few more to check out:
Where can you go and see over 800 African America women networking, learning and celebrating their accomplishments?
Where can you attend sessions on leadership and entrepreneurship from Vera Moore, Beverly Johnson and Amsale Aberra? This can only happen at the Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit.
I am still on a high from the 7th Annual Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit. I have been trying to figure out how to bottle up my experience in a few words and decided to give you a list of my highlights from the conference. I promise this is an event you do not want to miss next year. See you soon.
1. Being Empowered
I have been too many different conferences but I tell you being at the Black Enterprise Women of Power Conference I feel so empowered and motivated to work even harder for my mission. There is nothing like seeing so many women of color from different backgrounds in one place.
2. Leadership Sessions
The breakout sessions were GREAT. I learned from Anita Hill on her struggle to bring Sexual Harassment awareness to all, Valorie Burton that lead the session on “9 Habits that Make You Happier, Healthier & Resilient” and from my favorite Sundra Ryce of SLR Contracting in the session on Risk Takes & Rule Breakers. I have so many notes and highlights that I learned from these sessions.
Innovation, Mentorship and Coaching . . . more and more resources are available to help grow your business idea. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation will launch its very first public service announcement during the Super Bowl this weekend. The commercial displays how one idea can grow into a successful business.
The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is referred to as the “World’s Largest Foundation Devoted to Entrepreneurship”. The foundation focuses on programs to advance entrepreneurship and improve the education of our youth. Their founder, Ewing Kauffman was one of the first pioneers in devoting his time and efforts to support entrepreneurship. Today the Kauffman Foundation is the most sought after organization for entrepreneurship expertise.
So while you join the other 111 million people to watch the Super Bowl on Sunday, then you too can be inspired to launch your business ideas. Check out their new website Willitbeyou.com for resources to launch your business today.
Take a sneak peak at the commercial that will air on Sunday.
Guest Post by Nabukenya Muwonge
The holiday season is over and the festive mood has died down. The holiday season was not a time for being serious, it was party time with the family! But that does not mean that somewhere in the back of your mind, your business, and its near future is no longer important. I’d like to ask you a simple but important question – have you sat down to start your strategic planning for 2012?
Perhaps you have not had the time because you were so busy and carried away with the hustle and bustle of the festive season. Or perhaps instead you are new to the world of self employment and are not sure where to start. That’s where I come in, with some simple steps to help you begin this exciting creative process. Read More
On November 1, 2011 President Barack Obama declared November as “National Entrepreneurship Month”. Encouraging us to celebrate our successes and support one another. It has never been a greater time than now to join the movement of self employment. Technology has allowed us to turn our mom and pops into global empires that are growing by leaps and bounds every year. (visit website)
Take the time to support a small business during this month or mentor someone you know that is interested in starting their own business. Your advice and motivation can catapult their passion into a billion dollar idea.
Ways to Celebrate National Entrepreneurship Month
Participate in Global Entrepreneurship Week.
November 14-20, 2011 is Global Entrepreneurship Week. This week is full of wonderful events throughout the world. PinkBoss, Inc is participating by awarding and featuring 7 industry changing women located in the metro Atlanta area. We are honoring these ladies for all their hard work and dedication to help others. Come up with creative ways for your organization to celebrate during this week as well. (Visit website)
Participate in Small Business Saturday
November 26, 2011 is the 2nd Annual Small Business Saturday sponsored by American Express. This day over 1.9 million people have pledged to shop and support a local small business in their area. This will help fuel the economy on the biggest shopping weekend of the year. The Small Business Saturday website is full of resources to help you promote discounts for customers to take advantage of for the entire day. You are also eligible for $100 in free Facebook Ads to help promote your business if you plan to participate. (Visit website)
Create a Tweetup or Networking Event.
Take the time to schedule a tweetup or email a few entrepreneurs to meet to discuss challenges and success stories to encourage one another. This can help build your network and offer additional support to other entrepreneurs around you.
“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
We enter into business for a variety of reasons, such as the need for a flexible schedule, time with family and friends, to be our own boss, etc. It’s scary, but we plunge in anyway. Does your fear just stop at that point?
Waves of fear keep coming, and will continue to come. Fear of failure, fear of inadequacy, even fear of growth. The waves just keep coming.
A friend of mine, who started his own business a couple of years ago, related his experience as a graduate student. He said, “If you can’t take the heat, get out or learn how to deal with the heat. The heat will not stop.”
Imagine, does the heat prevent you from taking your carefully prepared secret chocolate chip cookie recipe out of the oven at just the right moment? No, of course not. You grab a couple of hot pads and face the heat with confidence.
What is it that you need to face the heat with confidence?
Understanding that this is a new frame of mind is important. Fearing forward is not a one time event at the start of your business. It is a process that will become refined more and more over time. Indeed, it is a philosophy that can enhance your life in general. Giving up is so easy, but fearing forward forces you to expand as a human being.
Yes, these days are times uncertain. Yes, there would be obstacles anyway. Yes, it is frightening. Still, we can succeed with the right frame of mind. Others have learned this, overcome great obstacles, and are now household names.
Dale Carnegie once said, “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” Pursuing an endeavor without thought and planning is foolhardy, yet thinking and planning without ever getting started will produce no results except regret and more fear.
It’s has been said that ninety percent of what we worry about will never happen anyway.
Helen Keller reinforced this when she said, “Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold.” Did she allow the heat to prevent her from living her life? No, she learned the value of fearing forward.
So, are you afraid? Are you allowing your fears and the fears of those around you to stop you? Don’t let the cookies burn. Discover what your hot pad is and fear forward.
Post by Paula Sykora
Paula Sykora is an experienced artist and graphic designer living near Boulder, Colorado, USA. To learn more, please visit http://www.realworldartstudio.com You may also contact Paula directly at email@example.com; @realworldartstd
Article Source: Fearing Forward
Guest post written by Tiffany Reddick
Like many procrastinator/perfectionists, I am a planner. I usually operate on two extremes, planning everything within and inch of its life, so much so I usually end up missing the opportunity I was planning for. Or I act extremely impulsively, recklessly abandoning all logic and diving straight into action. As you can imagine both methods typically end in disaster.
Since deciding to become an entrepreneur, I recognized I needed to balance these extremes if I had a snowball’s chance of making my dreams come true. I started researching the best practices of successful people. Side note: While at the time I didn’t realize it, by studying success, talking to and learning from successful people, I was apparently drawing success to me. I started meeting more and more successful, knowledgeable people who were throwing all sorts of helpful advice my way. True, I did pay for some of this knowledge but my contribution was a small investment for the information these ladies, and a couple of gentlemen provided. This is based on the universal law of attraction: What you focus on grows.
But back to the topic at hand: as I read, researched, case studied, and discussed, a few common themes began to surface and then wave at me and then pretty much smack me upside the head until I wrote them down. I call them the Five P’s of Success. Like to hear it? Here it goes:
I am not a super religious person; however as a regular member of “Bedside Baptist” I totally understand the importance of spirituality in creating a happy, healthy, and purposeful life (oooh another P perhaps?). Whether it was God, Buddha, or simply “the Universe”, most of the experts I read and spoke to often referred to their spirituality as a key factor in their success. It can be easy to get caught up in the excitement and enthusiasm of a brilliant idea but be sure you incorporate some quiet time in to your schedule to consult your higher power.
Make a vision board, write out your dream business or career description! Describe it out loud no matter how silly it may seem! If you don’t have anyone around that you think will support you, say out loud to yourself (and then go find some people, but that’s another blog for another day). Tell yourself out loud as often as you can that you deserve the best. Affirmations create tons of positive energy “Ask and ye shall receive”. More law of attraction stuff. Believe it or not it works!
As brilliant or foolproof as you think your goal may be, if you don’t have a solid plan on how to execute it, you don’t have jack. Not only should you have a brief business or career plan that details how you will achieve your goals but also a plan on how to manage your life while you make these dreams come true and maintain your sanity. Honestly, I believe this is part of the reason why many women break through glass ceilings in record time only to realize that they are burnt out and/or have no one to share this beautiful life with. By having a proper plan, you can build in time for work and play, because really what is one without the other?
Quite honestly this can be the hardest part but we just have to start. Do something, anything that will get you one step closer to achieving that goal. All the planning in the world will not protect you from failure so get over that fear and do something (even if its just one thing) measurable on that plan you just created. Commit to just fifteen minutes a day at first as you get over the dread of starting it will be easier to dedicate more and more time.
Nobody said it was all rainbows, lollipops, and puppies in this life. But as is often repeated at Bedside Baptist, “tests” can become our “testimonies”. One of my case studies/mentors-in-my-head (i.e. people I can’t afford to consult with yet) Shanel Cooper-Sykes, says this “If you get everything you want in this life easily you have a bunch of things, but you have no knowledge. So what happens if you lose everything? You will have no idea how to get it back. There is knowledge in the process.” Trust the process, if it is smooth sailing great, but when you hit the rough waters, do not give up. Keep pushing towards your goal, collect and apply the knowledge you learned as result. Even if you end up shipwrecked, the horribly wonderful thing about life is you can start over at the first “P” a smarter and more experienced sailor.
Tiffany Reddick is a former mental health therapist transitioning into micro entrepreneurship to pursue her passion for helping young women recognize their inherent fabulousness. She believes in expensive shoes, cheap bath towels, and her ability to save the world and still make it to happy hour on time. Follow her @TiffanylReddick
Apps, Apps and More Apps!
Gone are the days of carrying around your 17 inch laptop to every single meeting. The use of smartphones and tablets have allowed entrepreneurs the opportunity to operate their business from the palm of their hand. These new devices are redefining the mobility of business owners.
It is estimated that there are over 400,000 iPhone applications (apps) and over 300,000 Android apps available. These apps range from personal apps like weight management to business apps like inventory management. With a never ending amount of apps available for your business it is often hard to determine which one is a good fit for your business. I have created a list of a few apps that I have discovered to help you get started.
Features: Bump allows you to share information with someone by simply bumping your devices together. Cool, huh? I network all the time and it is great to “bump” my contact information without having to pass a business card.
Price: FREE (The price we all LOVE)
Available for: iPhone & AndroidC
Features: Cozi is free online calendar that allows you to share your calendar, shopping list, to do list and more. This app is ideal for families to keep track of everything.
Available for: iPhone, Android and Blackberry
Features: Hours Tracker is a popular time tracking app. No more time sheets to record projects, this app allows you clock in and clock out of projects tracking the time spent. You can apply an hourly rate that will help you invoice your clients accruately. (Great for graphic designers and consultants)
Price: FREE or $2.99 for the upgraded version
Available for: iPhone
Features: Square is my BFF. This app allows you to accept credit card payments from your smartphone or tablet. The card reader is free and the money is deposited to your account the next day.
Available for: iPhone & Android
Features: CardMunch is the best time saver. If you are like me you have a stack of business cards that you need to input into your CRM system. This app allows you to capture a picture of the business card and input the contact in your phone. Once this is done you can link it with your LinkedIn account to build your network.
Available for: iPhone (Android coming soon)