Is Your Business on the Right Track? Take the Quiz and Find Out!

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How well do you know your company? You may think you know your company like the back of your hand, but every business owner needs a little reminder to take a look at the big picture. Take the following quiz and think where you’re headed and if that’s the direction you want.

Question: Who are my customers?
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V is for Venture Capital

Venture capital is a bit misunderstood due to the press venture investments often receive. It seems like every week or so the news is covering some start-up that raised an inordinate amount of venture capital for an idea that sounds, at best, a bit shaky. 

But that tenuous relationship between a business idea and its application is what turns an investment into an injection of venture capital. Venture capital is, in a nutshell, the money that is invested into an early-stage, high-risk company that is believed to have the potential to yield huge returns, if it succeeds.
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10 Ways Small Businesses Can Start Saving Money Right Now

Whether you are an entrepreneur who’s just starting out or a seasoned small business owner, you probably have one thing in common. Chances are you want to cut the costs of doing business. In addition to increasing profits, this allows you to reinvest in your own success. There are a number of creative ways that entrepreneurs can cut their costs. Here are ten strategies that will help you slash expenses quickly and efficiently.
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How Much Capital Do You Need to Start Your Company?

The process of starting a business is usually associated with that of accumulating large sums for start-up capital and marketing campaigns. Businesses have now moved away from that sort of thinking and have found easier and more innovative ways to get their companies up and running without having to find an outrageous sum of money. This calls for a total change in the mindset of the budding entrepreneur and a level of commitment to the process.

Starting a Business with Zero Capital

This will be a challenging task with many hurdles to jump, but once you are dedicated to the process you will make it. Here are a few tips.

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Should You Use a Personal Credit Card for Business Expenses?

As a small business owner, many responsibilities fall on your shoulders. And, as time is money, you probably multi-task to increase your efficiency whenever possible – such as when running errands and making purchases.

There’s nothing wrong with a little bit of multi-tasking to increase efficiency. But there’s one practice you’ll want to avoid – using your personal credit card for business expenses. Many professionals have done this at one time or another, so it probably seems like there’s nothing wrong with this practice but there are four clear advantages to keeping your personal and professional purchases separate. Continue reading

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9 Ways to Work with a Bookkeeper for Your Business

You love being the CEO of your business, but what happens when you have to be the CFO?

Dealing with your business finances can be overwhelming.   If you want to take your company to the next level, you are going to need to have some major clarity around your business finances.  You need to lift up the hood of your business money and see what is going on in there.  That way, you can make better financial decisions, have more control over your business, and focus on your life without being worried about your company finances.  How cool would it be if your stress level went down?! Continue reading

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Can Small Loans Help Advance your Career?

In today’s economy, it can be a challenge to find a job or a career right out of college. Chances are you currently don’t have enough money or aren’t making enough money at that part-time job to afford the things you need to advance your career or find that dream job with. Maybe you just graduated with an art degree and want to build an amazing online portfolio, but you need a new iPad to do it on. Maybe you have a degree in business, but can’t afford the professionally tailored suit you need for your first major job interview.

The problem of not making enough money to help get you to the career you want is fairly common for recent grads. However, with small loans and cash advances, you can find the tools you need to have the career you want. But that doesn’t mean you have a limitless source of free money. Borrowing can advance your career, but it must be done responsibly. Before you begin taking out loans and racking up debt, there are a few questions you need to consider. Continue reading

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Guest Post: Where Do You Get Stuck With Money?

As a Certified Financial Planner™ practitioner, new clients come to me because they want advice on specific issues like:

What can I do to get better control of the cash flow in my business?
How can I develop a budget that allows me to spend and save?
Can I afford to get office space?
Am I on track to retire?
How should I invest my portfolio?
How can I get ahead in my financial life?

I bring up the definition of insanity – doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. As I begin to answer these questions, my clients realize that most financial decisions they must consider somehow relate to making a change. They become more aware of what’s getting in their way and begin to reflect on the notion that something has to change. Continue reading

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Guest Post: Can Your Small Biz Use Crowdsourcing With the JOBS Act?

Recently, the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act) passed amid much hoopla about how this legislation would be the stimulus that jumpstarts the economy and enables people like you and me to invest in all of these startups without becoming accredited investors, as was previously required by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Now if you’re a small business owner, the floodgates will open, and you’ll be able to raise tons of money to accelerate your business, right? Probably not. While the SEC is still in its evaluation stage and the actual regulations have not been written, some things are already clear from the text of the JOBS Act bill itself. First, you will only be able to raise a total of $1 million in the course of 12 months, and individual investors will only be able to contribute the greater of $2,000 or 5% of net income if they make less than $100,000 per year or have a net worth of less than $100,000, and they will only be able to contribute the greater of 10% of the net income or net worth of the investor if the investor makes or is worth more than $100,000 and not to exceed $100,000 (see Section 302(a) of the text of the bill for details). So, raising $1,000,000 will require either at least 10 high income/net worth investors or at least 500 lower net worth investors, and probably many more than that.

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5 Questions Small Businesses Should Ask Before Spending

One of the keys to startup success is the ability to efficiently manage scarce resources. Among the scarcest resource for any small business is money. Startups have to adhere to a budget and know what and where the money they are spending is going to.

Asking the right questions can lead small businesses down the right path. When it comes to money, here are five questions that small business owners should be asking in order to get the most bang for their business’ buck. Continue reading

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