A Day in the Life of a Self Employed Professional
It's Monday morning and Connie the Consultant sits in her executive office chair overseeing her business empire. Her desk is strewn with half finished projects, several weeks worth of to do lists (none of them completed), scribbled post it notes, and a permission slip for her daughter's field trip to the Planetarium that should have been turned in last week. Somewhere, buried deep in the rubble is Connie's business plan. The last time she saw it was during the Clinton Administration.
The phone rings. She checks her caller ID and groans. It' Dee Dee Demanding calling again, wanting to make one more change in the project that should have been wrapped up a month ago. Connie scribbles Dee Dee's current list of demands on yet another post it note. She hopes this will be the end of the changes so she can finally get paid for the project. She sure won't be making a profit on THIS project.
Connie picks up the Joann Marden file to find the notes from their last meeting. She looks through the entire folder twice-no notes. She starts to dig through the stacks on her desk muttering, "I had it in my hand, where did I put it, I just saw it, where can it be?"
The phone rings again. This time it's a telemarketer wanting to sell Connie a vacation trip. Connie laughs and says, "No sense calling me, I'm self employed. I don't get vacations."
She thinks back for a minute to when she became self employed. She actually believed she'd be able to take time off whenever she wanted to. What a joke! Every time she thinks she can get time off, something comes up with one of her clients. Or the check she was expecting to receive didn't come in. Or, she didn't dare spend money because she didn't have any new projects lined up.
Her email dings and she stops to check the new message-a notice that her online credit card statement is ready. She clicks through and signs in. She sits back stunned, "I spent HOW MUCH?! Shaking her head she goes back to work looking for the notes from the meeting with Joann Marden. Instead she finds the estimated tax payment that she should have sent in a month ago. She groans and checks the clock. It's nearly lunch time and she's accomplished nothing so far.
Another email comes in. It's a newsletter from a small business expert telling her she needs to work "on" her business, not just "in" her business. "Yeah", she says, "I've got all kinds of time to learn about working "on" my business. Right after I find the Marden notes, make the umpteenth change on Dee Dee's project, and get these proposals done that have been sitting on my desk for three weeks."
She hits the delete key and goes to lunch?
Caroline Jordan, MBA helps self employed professionals find the cure for "business as usual". Visit http://www.TheJordanResult.com for strategies and resources to help you Get Knowledge. Get Focus. And Get Results.
How to Prepare for Your Start-Up Venture!
When you awoke this morning, you found yourself buzzing with a fantastic idea for starting a new business and you hadn't a doubt in your mind that you could turn it into a huge success. But now what? All those great ideas floating around in your head and you're excited about making them happen, but at the moment you don't know where to begin. What is the first thing you should do as you contemplate your plan of action?
What Your Small Business Can Learn From The Doctor
Most doctors never distinguish the difference between customers and patients. That's why they have waiting rooms instead of reception areas.
Small Business Spoiler - Procrastination
One of the most common issues that comes up for business owners is procrastination -wasting time, putting obstacles in the way of taking action towards goals, making excuses for delays, creating confusion/busyness etc. Procrastination is a self-defeating behavior.
Who Does Over Disclosure Really Hurt In Franchising?
Costs of over regulation and over disclosure end up hurting the very consumer that the regulatory bodies are trying to protect. Over disclosure and over regulation is in itself the worst evil of civilization, as it stifles free enterprise, innovation and free markets. In franchising the disclosure documents have in fact grown to over 200 plus pages in length on average. You should be happy you are not a tree in the forest right now.
Cleaning Service Stations with a Pressure Washer
Fuel prices these days are quite high and they take their toll on a service business. It is time to strike back. If you own a cleaning business that uses pressure washers why not clean service stations and get some of your money back as you pay $2.30 per gallon for fuel? Gas Stations are usually franchises and have cleanliness commitments as part of their franchise agreements with the oil companies they sign on with. This means they have no choice they must keep their gasoline stations spiffy. Currently with unemployment rates so low 5% on average many stations do not have the extra labor needed to keep up with the cleaning.
Business Success - The 42 Greatest Business Tips
What does it take to grow a business and run it successfully? The main ingredient is attention to the basics, operating with integrity and following the way other successful people have run their operations.
Using Holidays to Put Some Extra Cheer in Your Cash Box
No matter your age or station in life, we all look forward toholidays. They give us a reason to decorate, celebrate, and mostof all, spend.
If You Want To Be Remembered...
Send handwritten notes. That applies whether you're a guy or a gal. It's not about being touchy-feely, it's about maintaining good business relationships with the people you know and the prospects you meet.
Grab Your Consumers Attention in a Cluttered World of Marketing Communications
A cluttered world of marketing communications diminishes the ordinary. The consumer can no longer be bother with the dull, trite and a boring hodgepodge of marketing communications that are pandered in front of them every day. They simply haven't the time, nor are they willing to figure out what irrelevant messages warmed over with pseudo-showmanship the marketer is selling them.
More Rules for Franchising?
The FTC- Mighty Federal Trade Commission has unilaterally decided to change the franchise rule. They changes are sure to hurt American business, Franchisors and the over 400,000 Franchisees in the United States today. These regulatory changes even if mere interpretations and opinion cause events which have unintended consequences. Such changes are rarely forgotten as one simple stroke of a pen by a Federal Trade Commission attorney who does not understand the real world of franchising can wipe out several quarters of profits.
Become The Squeaky Wheel and Watch Your Business Skyrocket!
Providing high quality customer service is a must for any business to survive.
Four Reasons Why Small Businesses Succeed (or Fail)
The American system of business management has been admired and emulated around the world. This system is characteristic of two traits in the American psyche: (1) enthusiasm for the future and making things better, and (2) an openness and willingness to change in order to achieve that end.
Local Search and Internet Yellow Pages - A Whole NewVocabulary for Small Businesss
Buyers want both online and local information about where to buy Most small businesses are local in nature, serving people who live nearby. Their customers found them through traditional methods like the Yellow Pages or newspaper ads. So far, the Internet hasn't figured prominently in their marketing efforts. That's about to change, as Local Search methods become more widespread. Even for buyers expecting to spend their money close to home, more and more of them go to the Internet to locate desired products and services. They rely on search engines to find suitable vendors in the fastest, easiest way. Local Search combines the search query word or phrase with specific geographic terms, like city or zip code. That way, search results only include enterprises in that local area. Instead of information about a small enterprise being lost among millions of pages of search results, it shows up in a small pool of local providers. That's good for them, as well as the person looking for what they provide. Small operations can easily be located by a whole new group of buyers Consumers don't simply go to the Yellow Pages when ready to buy - as they once did. Studies show that an astonishing 36% of online searches are conducted to find local businesses. About a quarter of all Internet users already conduct local searches. They'd do even more of it, if the desired small business data were more complete. Local enterprises need to prepare for the impact of changing customer habits. An easy first step is to include your business in Internet Yellow Pages (IYP), along with the printed Yellow Page directory. That puts your enterprise on the radar screen. Learn how your business can make the most of Local Search by visiting http://www.yellowpagesage.com. You'll find reliable advice from experts in Yellow Pages and Local Search so you can get more mileage from your promotional dollars. Start by getting comfortable with search concepts, and improve your odds of being found when people search online for what you offer. You don't even need your own Web site to benefit from Internet Yellow Pages and Local Search. Learn the Relevant Terms Search Engine - method for locating the information available on the Internet; a program that searches Web pages for requested keywords, then returns a list of documents where the query terms were found Google and Yahoo, the major general search engines, have both shifted gears to make Local Search a priority when delivering relevant results. Spider (also called "crawler" or "bot") - goes to every page on every Web site and reads the information so it can be available to searchers; to "crawl" a site it collects and indexes information from it Specialized Search Engines - narrow focus of information crawled and indexed, like medical, business, or shopping sites Keywords - word or phrases used by search engines to locate relevant Web pages; words chosen to improve a site's search engine placement and ranking Search Query - search request, which the search engine compares to the spidered entries, then returns results to the searcher Search Results - compiled list of Web pages that a search engine delivers in response to a query; the number of items returned is usually overwhelming (in the millions), so searchers only bother to view results on the first pages Relevant Results - the test of a good search is whether the results obtained relate to what the person wanted to find, without a lot of irrelevant links Local Search - combining a geographic term in a search query to locate suitable providers in a specific area Pay per Click (PPC) - method of building traffic whereby site owners bid on search terms (keywords) that link to their site Geographic Terms - specific information about the local area that can be included in a local search: zip code, town, county, geographic region, state Top Ranking - sites shown on the first page(s) of search results Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - fine-tuning keywords and page content so the Web site rates high in search engine results Tags and Titles (on Web Pages) - provide site keywords and information to search engine spiders for indexing a site Internet Yellow Pages (IYP) - directory of business phone numbers and locations in a geographic area, organized by category; searchable data base accessed on the Internet Make your business easy for searchers to find The public is embracing the convenience of searching on the Internet to find information about local businesses. However, their searches for desired information are compromised because so many local enterprises don't show up in the databases as yet. Those that do have an edge in their local market. Climb aboard! Make sure searchers can find you. For little or no money, you can expose your enterprise to the whole world. Whether or not your business has a Web site, you need to provide the information people are looking for in the places that they look for it. Local Search and Internet Yellow Pages open new avenues to buyers ready to spend. Best of all, they support and compliment your traditional methods of finding new business. So you cover all your bases. (c)2004, Lynella Grant
Local Government Relations for Small Business
Most small businesses simply go about their daily business and serving customers without ever worrying about local government relations. For some it turns out okay but for others it can become a disaster. You never know when a new project down the street may call for new plans to adjust the roads or put in center medians. If you are on a busy road you rely on traffic from both directions. A five-month road project can kill a business and what if it is in your busy season. If you are in retail that could be Christmas Time; imagine half you customers not being able to turn into your driveway? Then imagine after the holidays are over you have to deal with a center median which does not allow cross-over traffic. Or a do not cross over the line sign with a police car enforcing the new laws from your drive way leading into your business?
WARNING to Home Based and Small Business Who Want to Buy Television Cable Advertising
Most small businesses will not even try to advertise on television. It's too expensive and the audience is too broad. The ads on television are not targeted enough. Think back to the last time your entire family was gathered around a television set. It was fun family time, but think of how different each member of your family is. The children at different ages want different things.
Alliances: What works, what does not
Why Alliances Fail
Increase the Wealth in Your Community
Many of us have noticed how some nearby communities seem to be "wealthier" than other nearby communities. They seem to have more shopping markets, more restaurants, more choices; items often cost more in these communities than they do in surrounding areas, yet the affluence remains where the prices are high; people are drawn to these communities, bringing even more resources and more wealth.
Contract Cleaners ? A Guide for Business Part 2
In the first part of this article I put forward 7 questions that I believed were important to ask of your potential cleaning company. In this article I will explain the relevance of the first two questions and the answers you get to you as a business.
Get In Touch With Your Competition!
We all know that competition is an ugly word but competitors are a fact of life in business. If your business can't compete with other businesses, don't start it. You have to have some type of an edge.
FTC Adding to the Franchise Rule
Last summer the FTC put forth a report and then asked for comments on modifications of the franchise rule. There has been no real significant changes since the 1970's, but lots of opinions and case law along the way. All these complications of rules and the rules proposed today by the Federal Trade Commission do not help franchisors remain efficient or franchisees sell more pizza, hamburgers or donuts.
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