Small businesses close for a number of reasons. Whether a new venture comes along that the owner can’t refuse, or making ends meet just becomes too much, every business has its own story. We asked our small business experts to tell us about businesses they’ve had to close, and what they learned from the process. Here are our favorite answers… (more…)
They say there’s no teacher like experience. No matter how many books you read or how many successful business owners you talk to, you truly won’t know what it’s like to run a business until you get your hands dirty and… well, run a business. We asked our small business experts what they’ve learned since opening their businesses. Here’s a list of our favorite answers… (more…)
A question every small business owner should ask himself is, “what gets my customers in the door?” There are lots of reasons a customer could choose your businesses, but we found it often boiled down to three main options: customer service, competitive pricing, or the product/service itself. Of the entrepreneurs we asked, 50% think their customers choose their business due to their customer service. Product comes in at second at 43%, and price was dead last at .06%. We asked our small business experts to elaborate on why they think their customers choose them over competitors. Here’s what they had to say… (more…)
It’s no secret that providing excellent customer service can lead to earning repeat business, and overall success. We wanted to find out what customer service tricks other small businesses were utilizing to keep their customers happy. So we asked our small business experts what their number one customer service tip is. Here’s what they had to say… (more…)
A fear of failure can be paralytic, especially to a small business owner or would-be entrepreneur. It means losing all the time, effort, energy, and money risked on an enterprise. But what if someone said that failure was a good thing? That, in fact, feelings of failure and defeat carry the true key to success?
Our good friend Fran Tarkenton argues exactly that in his new book “The Power of Failure“. Fran Tarkenton is no stranger to failing – he helped bring the Minnesota Vikings to the Super Bowl three times during the 1970’s, and each time lost. After turning to business, the first two companies he founded eventually folded. But he didn’t allow himself to be engulfed by that failure and now, as CEO of Tarkenton Companies, is a wildly successful entrepreneur.
Failure, he posits, is a gift that brings incredible power. In “The Power of Failure” Tarkenton shares never-before told stories of his time in the NFL, and the personal, occasionally painful, moments he experienced. Through his own hard-learned lessons and invaluable advice given to him from friends and mentors like Sam Walton and Bernie Marcus, Tarkenton lays out the myths and truths of failure, and how to follow through to success. (more…)
As you small business grows, it’s hard to pin down the best time to hire new people. Managers are especially difficult to time correctly. In many cases, they are seen as a luxury for small business and should only be brought into your management team if absolutely necessary. But as your company grows and your job as owner changes, managers are the key to a successful, growing small business.
When you first started you may have ended your day at 6pm, then it became 7pm, and now you leave later than you ever intended. If you find that your days are getting longer because you have to fix every little problem in you company, it’s probably time to hire a manager. As Reza Chowdhury, of AlleyWatch said in an interview with Bplans, ”You’ll likely find yourself trapped in a perpetual hamster wheel, focused on tasks that are not a good use of neither your time nor skill set. At this point, it’s time to bring in the help to allow you to focus on the big picture.” (more…)
Banking is a huge part of running a small business. Between acquiring a loan, opening an account, and keeping up with paperwork, it helps to know the tricks of the trade. We asked our small business experts what they’ve learned about small business banking since starting their businesses. Here’s what they had to say… (more…)
Although internships are not necessarily a new idea, their rise as an essential part of the college kid’s life has only occurred in the last decade or so. Employers set out every year for a new batch of interns, each with their own set of requirements. From talking to my own college intern, I can tell you that most students her age don’t have a great grasp on the specific characteristics employers look for in an intern. The issue arises because many consider interns to be their own class of employee that has very different expectations than the rest of the company. We asked some experts on what exactly they look for in an intern and, as to be expected, the results were all over the board.
At MyCorporation, we’ve found that creating a login feature keeps our customers wanting to work with us. With MyCorp Vault, our customers can login to access their business documents whenever they need them. We also consistently provide assistance to businesses throughout their entire lives with services like filing annual documents.
We asked our small business owners how they create long-term relationships with their customers and this is what they had to say: (more…)