How to Avoid Losing a Friend when You Become Business Partners

How to Avoid Losing a Friend when You Become Business PartnersMany of life’s burdens – big and small – are lightened with a friend for support and this lesson has not been lost in business. If you’re thinking of starting a business with a friend or family member, you’re not alone. Some of the most enduring and positive American companies were founded by a couple of friends who had an idea. They didn’t always have a lot of start-up cash, but they had each other.

  • UPS was started in 1907 by two teenagers with a single bicycle and a hundred dollars borrowed from a friend. Back then the U.S. Parcel Post wasn’t around and there was plenty of opportunity for the American Messenger Company of Seattle, Washington.
  • Ben and Jerry met in seventh-grade gym class in 1963. A decade later, they took a five-dollar correspondence course in making ice cream.
  • In 1978 two 20-something friends, John and Rene pulled together $45,000 to open what started as SaferWay and later became Whole Foods Market. Times were so hard on the friends they lived in the store and reportedly bathed using the hose disconnected from the dishwasher.

Continue reading

The Best Insurance Type for Your Small Business

By Katherine Wood, HomeownersInsurance.com

Unexpected events, even seemingly minor ones, could hit your small business much harder than you expect. That’s why you need to protect your hard work by purchasing the right type and amount of insurance. For a new small business owner, the insurance landscape can be difficult to navigate.

Here’s a guide to the basic requirements and other options available for safeguarding your successes.

Continue reading

Experts Weigh In: Forming LLCs vs. Corporations

llcs vs corporationsOne of the first decisions every business owner needs to make is what entity to file their business as, and that choice is typically between LLCs vs. Corporations. Really the decision comes down to what fits the needs of the business owner and the business, but there is still discussion on which entity is best. Here at MyCorp, we gathered together a panel of professionals to get their expert advice on LLCs vs. Corporations and which is the best to form for your business. Which side are you on?

1. “Generally speaking, corporate status is preferable. Banks typically don’t view LLCs as favorably during the loan application process and corporations don’t pay taxes on fringe benefits. These include group-term life insurance, medical reimbursement plans, medical insurance premiums, and more.”

- John Boyd, Principal, The Boyd Company, Inc.

Continue reading

6 Things Small Businesses Almost Always Forget To Insure

Given the stress of starting and running a business, it’s not surprising that small business owners often forget about some lesser-known types of insurance, or try to cut corners by foregoing the basics. Without the right insurance coverage, your business could lose a ton of money in an instant with nothing to back it up financially. Here are some areas small businesses almost always forget to insure.

1. Business Interruption Insurance: Because Disasters Wreck Your Bottom Line

Could your business survive a week or even a month of inactivity? Most can’t take that much lost revenue. Business interruption insurance protects you from losing money when your business cannot operate for a certain period of time.

If, for instance, your building was damaged, business interruption insurance would pay for areas including: Continue reading

3 Tips for Managing Office Relationships

Office romances. What’s an employer to do?

Valentine’s Day is this week and quite fittingly, we turn our thoughts to the ever sensitive subject of office romance. And whether or not it’s company culture to frown on personal relationships in the workplace or to look the other way, they do happen.  Strong bonds develop when employees work long hours together— and nowhere is that more true than in the intense environment of a small business or start-up. Couple that with social media platforms that keep us connected to our co-workers 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and you have the ingredients for office romance.

So the question is, how should you handle it?  Look the other way in the hopes that either the relationship will be short-lived and others won’t notice or that one of the employees in the relationship will leave the company and/or department?  Or wait until the relationship turns sour and either you are dealing with a sexual harassment complaint or other employee relations issues as employees “take sides” or claim “unfair advantage”?  And what about employees losing focus on work projects as they deal with their relationship issues that have spilled over from their personal lives into their work lives? Continue reading

Out of the MBA Program and Into the Trenches: Tax Tips for Entrepreneurs

While Americans have argued for years over whether or not multi-national banks require more government intervention, little time in mass media has been utilized to argue for the small businesses that make up the vast majority of our economy. Despite small businesses representing 99.7% of all private-sector employers, many continue to face government regulations that limit their ability to achieve healthy, sustainable growth. In order to allow for small businesses and start-up companies to build lasting momentum in our troubled economy, US legislators must be willing to create policies that support small business creation and management.

An Overabundance of Licenses

Continue reading

Knowing How to Use Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights

Patents, trademarks, and copyrights are all registered under the federal government which makes it easy for people to think the three are just about the same and get easily confused on how to use each one properly. The biggest difference between the three lies in the rights that they equip owners with and makes knowing the operational difference between these all the more important for owners. No two situations are alike which is why you have patents, trademarks and copyrights available as three different options to protecting intellectual property.

Knowing the applications, strengths, and weaknesses of these three will best help to protect your business for a wide variety of situations and benefit the business in the process. But before you start working with patents, trademarks, and copyrights, it’s important to know how each one varies from the other. Continue reading

Guest Post: Easy Insurance Tips for Small Business and Startups

As a new business owner or an entrepreneur who is just laying the groundwork for a passionate idea, it’s easy to get caught up in the building process and excitement that comes along with starting a new endeavor. There are business plans to write, products or services to develop, and a never ending string of fires to put out along the way. Often times important steps surrounding business insurance will get pushed to the side or forgotten about all together during this period of excitement which you definitely don’t want to have happen! Continue reading