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Supporting Veteran Owned Small Businesses

This video shares examples of a few veteran owned small businesses. Feel free to comment and share your own examples with website link belo...

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Small Business Online File Sharing Tool

One service to recommend to small businesses is SYNCING.NET's Outlook organization and file sharing tools. There is currently a home and professional edition, which both provide unique, secure peer-to-peer synchronization, enabling users to share data, files, emails, contacts, calendars, and more between many PCs. Data can be accessed at any time and place with no additional software or server hardware.

The Professional Edition is designed for small to medium businesses (SMBs) that need to sync numerous computers without a dedicated server or IT staff. This edition allows for simple synchronization of all file types as well as Outlook folders. Using one license per PC can create up to 25 secure Outlook networks and up to 25 secure File Sharing networks.

With SYNCING.NET, companies are provided with inherent privacy, security, and data redundancy, without spending time and money on dedicated or hosted servers. All incoming and outgoing corporate documents and data are protected with automatic 256-bit AES encryption. The product’s intuitive wizards allow for networks to easily be set up without IT staff. Once the software is installed on each of the computers, users can easily sign in and have access to all shared folders from each computer.

Users will not have to wait for a document to be downloaded from a server just to view or edit it. Files are stored locally and are always kept in sync while the user is online. When offline, documents can be edited and the next time an Internet connection is established, the file will be synchronized. Professionals will be able to stay productive whether they are working in the office, from home, or on the road. Check out their website for more information: SYNCING.NET

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Business Operation Management For Small Business

One of the problems that seems to plague small business is when they grow beyond the point where they can do everything themselves. Most businesses start out with the owner and they do it all. As they grow it becomes much more difficult to do everything, ontime and well. Things start to get dropped and forgotten. Some of these things include, billing, returning phone calls, follow-up on sales opportunities and missed appointments.

In the past you would hire someone to take care of the less important tasks while you continued to deal with the important details of running your business. Still trying to keep the important things close so they get done with the professionalism that you and your customers expect. While this does help, it comes with its problems too. You may work from home and not want a stranger working in your home while you are not there, or while your family is. You could hire a relative or friend but that has even more problems attached to it.

Answer: Hire someone who knows all about running the operational side of business. Someone who is available all day, everyday and has the tools and skills to get the job done right, ontime and professionally. Someone who can talk to your customers with the skill level required, someone who has the same focus and intent that you do with your clients; keep them happy with your services, communicate with them, follow-up on sales opportunities, drive your revenue opportunities higher.

You can now outsource these services for a small fraction of the cost of hiring someone. You have none of the complications of hiring personnel such as managing them (while you are out producing revenue), sick-time, lack of skill, just to name a few. They will tie their fees to your revenue with no fixed fees. Because they are tied to your revenue they are as motivated as you are to make sure you are paid for the work you do and no opportunities are left behind.

For information on a recommended resource to accomplish the above …. Including contact details if you have any questions …. Please go to: TSSG Online

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Tips For The New Entrepreneur

For those of you that are considering becoming an entrepreneur, there are a few things that you need to consider. I know your head is probably already spinning, but you must do your research to succeed. There is an abundance of information available on the web. You could search for days and find things that you are looking for, however, there is still far more out there.

To start your research start by visiting these websites:

SBA ( I go to this site all the time for researching the business. Make sure to order their free book or CD Starting a Business. This site also has great information about creating a business plan and other links to other informative sites.

SBA

Score (Retired professionals that provide free counseling. I highly recommend getting in contact with them it really helps and they have offices everywhere). This site also has great links. It is recommended that you have your business plan created when you contact Score for better results.

SCORE

Google your Secretary of State for great information too. You can also find out if your business name is available and you can register your assumed name there as well.

Use Google Alerts to find out more information about entrepreneurship, starting a business, and your field to find out update information.

Nolo ( I used this site all of the time when I was in school and it seems to have good information for starting a business and so many other personal things as well.)

NOLO

Now that you have done your research about starting the business, it is time to create your business plan. Your business plan is the most important thing that you will ever do for you business. You can find out more information about creating your business plan on the sites above, but Entrepreneur.com actually gives examples, articles and tips on the subject.

Entrepreneur (great site for researching starting a business, I used this site a lot when I was in school and when I researched this business.) This will probably become one of your favorite sites.

Entrepreneur

Another resource that may provide some good information is your state Work Force Center (unemployment office).

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

How To Start An Online Business

In today’s economy, more and more people are looking towards the internet and starting an online business as a way to support their family.

Unfortunately, most people are totally in the dark about how to start an online business, or they get started but then get stuck with a sub-par website, no customers and no plan.

The Chrysalis Plan wants to change that. In mid-April 2010, Christina Nelson of Vital Office Solutions and Cindy Bruce of Essential Office Solutions are launching “The Chrysalis Plan: Nurturing Your Journey to Success”.

The Chrysalis Plan offers learning modules for members that will show step-by-step instructions on how to do everything, from setting up a business plan, to building and maintaining a website. Members will receive 2-5 new modules each week, which will be provided in the form of blog posts, pdf downloads, audio files and/or videos. The learning modules are meant to help the average, non-technical, person start an online business the right way.

Members will also be treated to weekly group calls where ideas can be bounced around and answers can be provided, as well as, special guests and awesome deals on the things needed for an online business.

Membership is for a full 6 months and those who sign up early can test out the plan until May 1st, 2010 at no-cost. On May 2nd, 2010 membership will be closed and no new members will be accepted.

Interested in starting an online business or building a current one? Sign up at The Chrysalis Plan to be sent updates regarding the launch.

About: The Chrysalis Plan was started by Christina Nelson of Vital Office Solutions & Cindy Bruce of Essential Office Solutions after realizing how much time and energy they put into building their own businesses. Christina and Cindy knew there had to be a better way so, they put their heads together, combined all of their expertise and resources and The Chrysalis Plan was born.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Office Tools Suite For Starting A Small Business

Office123 provides a 360-degree suite that covers all the tools a starting business needs.

A startup or a small business is in no position to squander funds on expensive office tools. But a CRM or a project manager are necessary for efficient collaboration. Rather, the smart entrepreneur looks for different services online to cover their temporary needs. Soon, there is no clear picture of what is where, account details get misplaced and there is the constant hassle of importing and exporting between services. If exporting is available at all. What if this could be improved? There should be one portal for the needs of the office.

Office123 covers a whole variety of business tools starting from contact management all the way to accounting, with a project manager in between. The different modules work seamlessly with each other, as the data from CRM is shared with the accounting module. Juggling between different software is no longer needed.

Being based on open source, the rate of development of the software is immense. Also, the core is made up of award-winning and highly popular software, which makes it a solid contender for any big software companies out there, with the price suitable for small business - free!

Try it for the CRM and stay for the additional modules!

Find out more at Office123

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Hidden Agenda Of Health Care Reform …. And Impacts On Small Business

OK, so there are 32 million newly "covered". Got it. No more rescissions for pre-existing conditions. Got it. "Kids" can stay on their parents plan until they're 27. By the way, when I was 27 I had a wife, two kids, a job, and a mortgage, and if anybody had called me a "kid" I think we'd have exchanged unpleasantries, but apparently the left thinks of us ALL as their kids, hence the nannyism. But I digress. . .

So, major new expenses for the insurance industry. What happens to prices when the cost of goods sold spikes? Anybody? Beuhler? Beuhler? Beuhler?

So for anybody who is economics 101 challenged, pinching the profit of insurance companies through these reforms will create a) higher prices and / or b) shortages of available insurance.

Now, for extra credit: What was President Obama's objective early on in this process? OK, it was "single payer", which means the government handles your health care. Does anybody think that by enacting a bill that will force insurance companies to either raise prices or allocate their product is an accident? Hell no. The left is hoping that when they create the "public option" with subsequent bills you are so disgusted with the actions your insurance company has taken to stay profitable and stay in business that you'll abandon them and flock to the warming bosom of ObamaCare. That is the objective. This is the nose under the camel's tent, it's intention is to drive a stake between Americans and the private sector, and to "grease the skids" for a government takeover because the insurance companies are "just to greedy" to work for no profits.

This is an historic change, but it's only the first of many that will transform America into a country those of us who love the constitution don't recognize.

Of course much of my focus was on the small business implications of the Health Care Reform Bill.

The tax breaks for small enterprises setting up coverage for their employees will be welcomed, but the mandate to do so will be not be. Most of my friends plan to pass the cost on to the customer (be it an agency in government contracting or a consumer in the commercial venues). Or …. Lay people off so they’ll have a staff size they can afford to pay healthcare for. A good number plan to just pay the fine … since it’s cheaper than paying for the health care of their employees. Not exactly what Obama, Reid, and Pelosi et al had in mind is it!

The program's flagship “claim” is that it will reduce the cost of health care by billions …. well we shall see.

Unfortunately what most don’t understand ….. is that there is no real "change" until 2014. Except for the higher taxes we will be paying now.

An albatross around the neck too is that this bill in unconstitutional. You cannot mandate that someone buys anything. But that is the nanny state that we are moving closer and closer to. They are telling us what we can eat, what we can drink, what we can drive, what we can buy. Freedom is what this country was founded on and Americans despise the notion of anybody forcing us to do anything.

So was this bill historic? Yes, but not in the way Washington, Adams or Jefferson would want. But they were all racist, slave trading bigots, right?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Accounts Receivable Resource For Small Business

Monetizing your account receivables is a cost efficient way to achieve growth. You will gain quick access to cash and free up working capital. By leveraging your customer's good credit, you can improve your cash flow.

For small- to medium-sized businesses, access to working capital is key to growth. The Receivables Exchange is an alternate source of asset-based financing that provides access to working capital in a fraction of the time — at a competitive cost of capital.

Businesses that sell accounts receivable on The Receivables Exchange can reduce Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) and compress Cash Conversion Cycles (CCC), which allows them to increase their Return on Equity (ROE) and to enhance their liquidity position and key financial metrics. Simply sell one or multiple receivables as often as you like, and set the terms that work best for you. When selling accounts receivable at The Receivables Exchange, Sellers benefit from a competitive auction process where multiple buyers bid, ensuring competitive rates. To respect your privacy, your customers are never notified of your participation in The Receivables Exchange.

To learn more please go to: Receivables Exchange

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Software As A Service (SAAS) For Small Business

Around five years ago, there were certain communication and collaboration technologies which were available to online large enterprises. Software like MS Exchange, Sharepoint, and Lotus Notes meant setting up dedicated servers, and hiring expert staff to setup and maintain the software and hardware.

Although great benefits followed from such software, they were frustratingly out of the reach of smaller companies because of the large IT budgets required. Small companies usually had a small or no IT department, and constrained budgets.

The software-as-a-service revolution changed that, and allowed smaller companies to access the same software as large companies, over the net, for a reasonable monthly fees, without the need for software or hardware.

HyperOffice was founded in 1998, and was one of the first companies to offer SaaS software to small companies. It was founded with the vision of providing small companies with the same messaging and collaboration technologies available to large enterprises.

HyperOffice Collaboration Suite integrates a large number of tools with one sole purpose - to help teams work better. It includes email, document management, online project management, shared workpaces, shared calendars, contact management, online meetings, wikis, web forms, and do it yourself database applications.

All of HyperOffice's tools are accessible over the internet, and are designed for users who have no technical knowledge whatsoever.

For more information and contact details ….. so you can see for yourself ask any questions you may have … please go to: HyperOffice

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Video Marketing Resource For Small Business

My friend Lisa Cash Hanson provides some great services for first time business owners and small to mid size businesses.

The most impressive to me is a video presentation called the 59 Second Pitch TM. It's a great way to showcase a new product, service, or business.

This can be used in an email campaign, as a link in emails to future clients, potential client, or as an email attachment saying thank you to existing clients while keeping your name in front of them.

Lisa also offers consulting, coaching, and free tips via her blog and podcasts. For example: “How to produce podcasts” ( HINT ….. it's not hard and NO ONE should charge you $1500 to do it)

There are additional links, a brochure, and more information available on her website at Blueberry Babboon

A demo of the video is on BlueBerry Babboon Video

I feel that small business owners are already overwhelmed with the process of starting a new business and at times feel as though everything is coming at them from all sides. Lisa likes to make a clear path via her solutions that's as easy and cost effective as possible.

Lisa’s Motto - "It's a jungle out there....We'll guide you through it."