Thursday, April 24, 2014

Great Topics to Grow Your Business

By: Stan Washington
Date: April 23, 2014

I recently attended the Career Thought Leaders Conference and met with a number of small business owners. They had great speakers and wonderful interaction.

Here is what some people asked:

Why do I need to be on social media?
Use Social media to be where you audience is.  If you want to find "mom's who wish to reenter the workforce then Facebook would be the place because of their high degree of mom's who leverage the tool. Join groups. Participate.  Blog.  People want to hear from you!

What is the future of technology?
Terms that were discussed made me put my nerd beanie on.  "Big Data" and "3 Dimensional Browsers"  sound cool but what does this mean to you.  My input to this is you should be setting your sites on the "cloud." One presenter showed kids looking at a "Walkman."  Yes I had one of these 1980's relics. The kids of today couldn't even fathom music coming out of it. They couldn't even turn it on.

Now look at your business.  Are you still using old processes that does not include an "online" audience? Are you closing yourself off to an online business because you are afraid of it?  Don;t be. Start out small then move a little at a time and before you know it you will be online.

When is it time to expand?
When your business model has maxed out and your revenue can no longer increase.  If there are just no more hours in the day when you finish work and you still have not met your goal, then maybe it's time to expand.  Think carefully how you will do this.  Will it be selling something?  Can you work smarter? Should you streamline your processes so that you work more efficient?

Overall it was a wonderful conference! Speakers were engaging and lots of information was disseminated between small businesses.

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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Home Business Spotlight - Vol 1

Home businesses are on the rise!  Many people have hung up their corporate shingle to do similar work but have become their own boss. They have years of experience and have been trained by the best. They are talent that's hard to find.

Why are they leaving corporate and working from home?  They want to work flexible hours and most of all work from their home, thus reducing the commute. This trend is growing.  

Currently more than 16 million people work from home in the United States, a figure that is expected to continue growing in 2014. Social collaboration tools and communication apps present an opportunity to conduct business from home, generating predictions that suggest the number of people working from home in the U.S. will increase by 64% in the next four years.

Before you get started here are a few tips
1. Clean the house - This is now the place you work.  Remove clutter and you will remove distractions.
2. Turn off the television - You are now working from home and TV can be a distraction to your productivity.  
3. Go to work - Your commute is short but make it a ritual where you have office hours and a place that is designated as your workspace in your home. 
4. Get virtual - Join networks of real people and speak with them virtually.  This will give you a sense of belonging.