But the federal government is looking to small businesses to play a big role in reducing our nation's ginormous carbon footprint, too.
The International Council of Shopping Centers is still playing it safe and forecasting April sales will be flat to down 3 percent, but look for their prediction to be low. It's time to wake up and smell the recovery -- and plan your strategy for capitalizing on the retail rebound.
That's what got me thinking after reading that the U.S. Supreme Court resurrected a possible settlement in a class-action lawsuit brought by freelance writers.
In that case, New York Times v. Tasini, freelance writers brought a class action against The New York Times (among other publishers), claiming they had not given permission to the publishers to use their work in connection with online databases. In short, said the authors, if the publishers wanted to use their articles online in addition to the print format, they needed to pony up and pay the authors an additional fee.
Economic opportunity means less unrest, poverty, and less of a jihadi breeding ground overseas, the theory goes. While some U.S. entrepreneurs might wish the president was holding a summit to address domestic barriers to entrepreneurial business growth...you've got to admit fostering financial stability worldwide is a good idea, too.
To see what can be done to help ignite entrepreneurial efforts abroad, President Barack Obama holds a Summit on Entrepreneurship today and tomorrow in Washington, D.C., with the goal of learning how to better connect businesses and nonprofits here and in Muslim communities. A preview:
Turns out a recession changes everything.
Recently, I sat down with two clients who needed help with their business plans. Though their industries were poles apart (fashion and financial services), they shared a common problem. The friends-and-family well had run dry. In the case of the aspiring fashion entrepreneur, her dad told her he wouldn't give her one dime to start her business until she proved the concept on her own nickel. The financial services entrepreneur had already sunk $150,000 in the business, and his wife insisted that he raise some outside capital before he put any more of the family nest egg at risk.
Q2 - Mentors: Who, if anyone, do you idolize, look up to as a mentor or consider an example of all that's good about entrepreneurship?
Q3 - Politics: The Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship (April 26-27, 2010) will bring entrepreneurs and leaders from over 50 countries to Washington, DC to establish partnerships that the Obama administration says will provide support for entrepreneurial activity across the planet. As an entrepreneur, how much do you care about or pay attention to these events?
Q4 - Advice: What's the most important lesson you've learned thus far from being an entrepreneur that you'd want to pass along to future business owners?
Q: I have been the sole creator, brand manager, operations manager, production manager, marketing manager, sales director, web designer, photographer, journalist, admin asst., advertising manager, customer service, development director, and shipping department for a company I helped start for a client. I have been paid a monthly fee for this work with the understanding that eventually a co-founder, partnership would be put in writing and we'd begin to build the business and seek investors. So far, my client has seen growth in the company and is eager to find outside backing.
Did you hear the one about the guy who walks into a bar and ends up losing the next generation of Apple's iPhone? According to Gizmodo.com, the guy is Gray Powell, an Apple software engineer who was field-testing the device. Long story short, Powell left the phone--which isn't scheduled to be released until at least summer 2010--in a bar in Redwood City, Calif., where someone picked it up, looked for its owner but couldn't find him, realized it wasn't just any ordinary iPhone, called Apple to see if they wanted it back (he couldn't find anyone who took him seriously) and eventually sold it to the website for $5,000.
Better known as the VAT, the value-added tax is charged on retail goods and services. It's essentially a national sales tax that goes on top of state and local taxes charged. The entire European Union collects a VAT, which is typically steeper than sales tax here in the U.S. -- in Britain, for instance, it's 17.5 percent.
If you're dipping your big toe into the waters of social media marketing--all the while wondering if these somewhat obscure channels will really help promote your business or brand--I've got some good news for you. A well-researched report entitled the "2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report," was published this month, and it should be required reading for entrepreneurs and small-business
owners. It was put together by Michael A. Stelzner, the so-called grandfather of white papers.
Stelzner, who is also the founder of SocialMediaExaminer.com, asked 8,600 marketers to participate in a survey and ended up with a respectable 1,898 e-mailed responses.
Well, as technology attorney Mark Grossman would say, you'd want to be sure you go through a solid website audit. In his article, "Website Legal Audits," he covers some of the more common snags that can place you at a greater risk for lawsuits. They include:
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Doing business overseas
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Information accuracy
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Using other people's copyrighted or trademarked materials
'Google Places' and added a host of new features, demonstrating the behemoth's ongoing commitment to letting business owners manage their online presence using the world's No. 1 search engine.
As I've written before, you can add your business to the Google Places directory (if it's not already listed) for free. Whenever someone searches for a product or service that your business provides in that person's geographical location (zip code or city, state), your listing will be included in the search results.
- Having written and spoken a lot about what the heck happened here in Massachusetts, it became clear to me that running a campaign is an entrepreneurial endeavor. Governing is a completely different skill set.
- When we see a new candidate hop into the ring these days, he or she seems to be coming from the entrepreneurial and business world.
- Kornblut's book focuses on the unique challenges women face in politics, and these struck me as not very different from what women face in business, too.
Syracuse's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, or TRAC, studies federal spending patterns, as well as staffing and enforcement trends.
On healthcare reform, the IRS plans to send postcards to 175,000 tax professionals to educate them about the Health Care Tax Credit, and will hold 1,000 workshops for interested business owners. The credit covers 35 percent of health insurance costs now, and rises to 50 percent in 2014. It's good for businesses with fewer than 25 workers who earn an average salary of $50,000 or less. The credit's a bit complicated and works on a sliding scale depending on company and salary size.