While contemporary management gurus may take exception to Iacocca’s narrow definition of management, all entrepreneurs eventually recognize that motivating other people is essential to success. And the job of being good at management never stops.
In the beginning, when it’s just you and a partner, management may be about focus and productivity. But as you expand, management involves coordinating independent activities to...
1128By Chad Brooks
Despite a global push to cut greenhouse gasses, entrepreneurs trying to launch their own environmentally friendly businesses are finding a lot of pushback from those whose support they need most: investors, suppliers and customers, new research finds.
The study, which was recently published in the Journal of Business Venturing, revealed that many entrepreneurs attempting to start their own "green" businesses become disillusioned when they...
While some employers believe that all employees should have a “work first, life later” mentality, that’s just not always possible.
I remember how becoming a Dad for the first time completely threw off my productivity. The combination of shock, sleep deprivation, and sensory overload turned me into a walking zombie, and forced a brief leave of absence.
You take time off to finish a degree. You care for a loved...
In Real Leaders Don't Follow, author Steve Tobak explains how real entrepreneurs can start, build, and run successful companies in highly competitive global markets. He provides unique insights from an insider perspective to help you make better-informed business and leadership decisions. In this edited excerpt, Tobak offers his insights into the myths behind four popular styles of leadership and why not one of them is true.
Some of the...
095 by Jeff Charles
Many entrepreneurs are afraid of selling. It’s a pretty common fear.
Chances are there have been times when you have been afraid of persuading prospects to become customers. There are plenty of reasons why entrepreneurs might be afraid of selling.
You might be afraid of coming off too pushy. Maybe you’re concerned that you won’t be able to effectively communicate the value of your offering. You may even be afraid of...
076by Brian Hughes
Still managing projects with a Google Doc, tracking billable hours in an endless Excel chart, or juggling human resource benefits yourself?
In 2016, resolve to put an end to the madness. From straightforward accounting solutions to intuitive social media management tools, these five apps empower small business and entrepreneurs to do more with less.
Ready to save valuable time, money and sanity? Take your business to new heights with these...
When no one is around, I can vouch for the fact that leaders do talk to themselves. During those conversations with ourselves, we may be assessing an issue, thinking of a solution or seeing how a response should be best formulated when giving information to make sure it sounds the way it’s meant to sound.
What sets remarkable leaders above all others is their ability to tell themselves these truths everyday, which keep them...
Disruptive. If you look at the dictionary definition of the word, there are two -- almost polar opposite -- expressions. They are:
1. Troublesome, unruly, badly behaved and undisciplined, or, alternatively, 2. Innovative and groundbreaking.
I’ve worked with CEOs, leaders and entrepreneurs from both categories. Early in my career, for instance, I met with the president of a small bank who had a reputation for hurling items...
As mom used to say, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” If you want to use your brand name as a domain name for a website – but someone else already owns that trademark – they can potentially dispute your use of that name online. Courts can and have, depending on the circumstances, ordered businesses to stop using a name and pay damages, when they determine that trademark has been infringed upon.
When Jona Xiao was 12 years old, she was cast as the lead in her school play Rappingstiltskin -- the rapping version of Rumpelstiltskin. “I loved making people laugh,” says Xiao. “At that moment, I fell for acting.”
Shortly afterward, she heard an ad on the radio for a casting agency looking for new talent. The teenage Xiao convinced her parents to let her audition and pay the $5,000 for classes.
“Years later when I...
Your mindset affects what you believe is possible, and that will dictate what actions you take in your life and business. Your thoughts will either help or hurt your business. The way you think is one of your most valuable assets as an entrepreneur. Successful entrepreneurs understand this better than most.
Cultivating a strong mindset is a lifelong process, but today we have access to books, blogs, podcasts and videos...
A strong team culture is an integral part of successful ventures. A motivated team can translate into better work productivity, increased product quality, enhanced customer support and overall office spirit.
Benefits like these are the reasons that the best places to work are those that foster team culture. (Work-life balance and a healthy work environment are close offshoots.)
For examples, consider a list titled "Baltimore's...
Miracles in business don’t just happen. Opportunity never seeks us. Rather, we must seek it.
Needless to say, the only way to make a goal become a reality is to stick to a proposition and see it through to the end. Seeing a task through to completion regardless of how difficult it is to achieve is the definition of grit and will.
However, at some point in our lives, we all fall behind and attainment of our professional goals seems more and more...
When Eran Eyal arrived at Techstars New York office on a balmy Tuesday evening in August, he was emotionally drained. It shouldn't have been like this -- as one of seven founders or founding teams selected to pitch their startups to a roster of experienced judges, he should have been confident and excited.
But these weren't normal circumstances. The weekend before he'd received two separate pieces of devastating personal news....
I collaborate with many solo entrepreneurs and I must say, we are an interesting lot. A hybrid between the small-business owner and freelancer, we’re navigating new waters.
Successful entrepreneurs often talk of the ever-elusive “tipping point,” where passive income is achieved and audience size goes from the thousands to the hundreds of thousands. But for a lot of “solopreneurs,” a plateau happens in the thousands, and...
The end of the year is a good time to reflect upon where you are as a company compared to where you intended to be. In other words, did you meet your yearly objectives? If the answer is yes, then give yourself a pat on the back before asking the next key question: “How do we sustain success?”
Conversely, if the answer is no, then there are number of questions to ask yourself and your team that will reveal why, and fortunately, there...
0118Tanya Benedicto Klich
In a market flush with startups, it’s tough to stand out. As a CEO, you likely work tirelessly for that “takeoff” moment by dreaming up viral marketing campaigns or pitching to key investors.
But while focusing on external growth, it’s important to give clear direction to the people who keep your machine running. “People can't follow unless they know where you're going,” says Ian Siegel, co-founder of...
011 by Smart Hustle Magazine
Only 75 percent of new businesses survive past the one-year mark. That means that 1 out of every 4 businesses will close their doors before the end of year one. And while you would think that making it past year one gets you to the summit, the reality is that each subsequent year becomes harder to survive with only 69% making past year two and only 50 percent of businesses making it to the five-year mark. So what’s the difference...
As an entrepreneur, unforeseen challenges are going to constitute the bulk of your workdays. It might be something big, like a long-committed employee who decided to quit or a new competitor emerging in your area, or something small, like a deadline that’s getting pushed back due to technical issues. Learning to face and overcome these challenges without losing your cool or compromising your long-term goals is one of the most...
There are tactics to self-branding, content marketing and entrepreneurship that the general public just isn't aware of. It’s true. I learn more and more every day when I network, read, write and test. There are super creative tactics some entrepreneurs use to get their brands and companies ahead.
Check out these stats from ACI, which explain every minute online:
Nearly 2.5 million pieces of content are shared on...
As much as you might want to hold one-on-one meetings with each employee at your company, at a certain point, those meetings become unrealistic. That’s why we asked 13 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following question:
“What system do you use to check in with employees as your company gets too large for one-on-one meetings every week?”
Here’s what YEC community members had to say:
“I love Trello. It...
06Robert W. Bly
What should you charge for your product? Are you looking to create a low-priced item you can sell as a loss leader to bring in new customers? Or are you looking to create a high-priced back-end product to sell to your existing customers?
To me, it’s more rewarding to command a higher price, charge premium fees, and get paid very, very well for what you sell. Especially if you're in a service business, competing on price means you...
Anyone who has worked with my dev shop (Agent Beta) from 2012 to early 2013 as a client or employee most likely spoke to or received an email from Dana. Dana started off helping with basic clerical tasks, and eventually learned enough to manage certain aspects of project development. Dana is smart, willing and eager to learn. Dana is also my mom.
She raised four children on her own, used to run marathons without...
0141By Chad Brooks
Despite common beliefs, hiring overqualified employees isn't always harmful to your business, new research suggests.
Although it has long been accepted that hiring overqualified employees is detrimental to an organization, new research finds that there are ways to negate the negative impact, according to a study recently published in the Journal of Applied Psychology.
The key to seeing benefits from overqualified employees is hiring them...
"Everyone will buy this product!" This overambitious misjudgment underscores an all too common fallacy in the world of entrepreneurs: the entrepreneur's bias. After all, ideas quickly become "your baby," and no one wants to hear their baby is ugly. But this thought process, could be a costly mistake. Instead, entrepreneurs need to ensure there is a need for their "baby"
Reasonably and thoughtfully estimating an idea's potential market...
If only half of startups survive more than five years and only one-third make it to 10, what’s the one thing you could do to ensure your company is sustainable? The answer is to create a growth strategy for your business, of course.
A growth strategy involves more than simply envisioning long-term success. If you don’t have a tangible plan, you’re actually losing business -- or you’re increasing the chance of losing business...
037 by Rieva Lesonsky
What are customers’ most common and biggest gripes about customer service? Consumer Reports National Research Center conducted a survey to find out. Consumers were asked about their experiences with customer service in the past year and what complaints they had. Here are their top answers (customers were allowed to choose multiple options):
Can’t get a person on the phone: 75 percent
Rude or condescending salesperson: 75...
015By Brittney Helmrich
Age may be just a number, but if you find yourself in a leadership position where you're managing employees who are older — and potentially more experienced — than you, your job can feel pretty tricky at times. You've been given a leadership position for a reason, but qualified as you may be for your role, questions and doubts about how to motivate your team or deal with conflicts can still arise due to age differences.
So, as a...
Despite all the beautiful pictures on Instagram, not everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship can lead to a life of freedom, and benefit the people a business serves. Or, it can be a nightmare if someone isn’t cut out for entrepreneurship. It’s not a one-size-fits-all choice for everyone.
I took the opportunity to become an entrepreneur at 19 years old. No one in my life at that point was an entrepreneur,...
Most first-time entrepreneurs seem to believe the myth that they need a minimum of a half a million dollars to start a business. At least that is usually the lowest number I see requested from our local angel investment group. In reality, over 80 percent of successful new businesses are self-funded for much less -- often as little as $10,000. I’m convinced this also reduces risk.
Starting a new business on a limited budget...
This year has been saturated in outlandish political statement, heated sports controversies and some of the most innovative marketing campaigns to date. Mixing next-gen technology with tried-and-true marketing methodologies, 2015 ads covered new ground in the advertising realm.
Although there were many eligible contenders, the following five were a cut above the rest:
1. 'Shot with iPhone 6'
Image credit: Apple
011By Chad Brooks
There is a good chance you don't know your employees as well as you think you do, especially when it comes to the perks they crave, new research finds.
Employers and employees have different views on which benefits are most valuable, found a study from Robert Half. Specifically, 39 percent of executives said health and wellness benefits are the perks their workers want most. However, just 16 percent of employees said they value those benefits...
Is this the year you want your financial picture to shine? We’ve got some good news: There are no tax increases looming, and the banking, housing and labor markets are solid. That means this is the perfect time to shore up your personal finances and prepare for the long haul.
Here are some steps you can implement when opportunity, cash flow, existing debt and mental fortitude allow. Barring a sudden global economic or personal meltdown, you...
016 by Kelley Keller
You opened your business and trademarked your brand name, logo, and so on. Fantastic! You’ve taken the first step to ensure only you can profit from your brand. But registering your trademark is just the first step to protecting your brand.
A trademark gives you the right to exclude others from using similar marks in the marketplace that might confuse consumers. The purpose is to make sure consumers know where the goods and services with...
012by Rieva Lesonsky
Retail returns are a trouble spot for retailers at any time of year, but at the holidays, the problem is especially significant. This year, the NRF expects holiday return fraud will cost U.S. retailers $2.2 billion, according to NRF’s Return Fraud Survey.
Retail return fraud is on the rise due to many factors, including the increasing popularity of gift cards, new payment methods and technological innovations that make it easier to falsify...
08By Chad Brooks
While frontline workers have long faced the prospect of machines replacing their jobs, managers are now being forced to confront the same possibility.
With intelligent machines and cognitive computing now capable of handling more upper-level jobs, managers will need to display a different skill set in order to prove their worth, according to a study from Accenture.
The study's authors believe that many of managers' daily tasks — planning and...
During a seven year stint providing training in the entertainment industry, one of the challenges was extremely high turnover. Inexperienced employees, with only a few weeks of experience, were promoted to supervisory positions. Even though the company provided extensive training, it was spread out over months and competed with the organization’s culture for successful application.
The new managers exemplified some of the common mistakes of...
Successful entrepreneurship starts with successful leadership. The ability to create, inspire and motivate a team of people to pursue one shared goal is a powerful thing. It can also be a challenging feat to pull off.
Luckily, we’re here to help. While no two leaders’ management styles are exactly alike, this year at Entrepreneur we’ve uncovered common behaviors, strategies and skills that unite effective leaders (along...
013 by Smart Hustle Magazine
Like every profession, entrepreneurs sometimes find themselves caught in ethical dilemmas where they are forced to make decisions about what is right and wrong. A recent Wall Street Journal article suggests that unethical behavior is typical of entrepreneurship, stating that, “Some entrepreneurs stay the ethical course. But there seem at times to be the exceptions.”
This begs the question — are there some circumstances where...
Millennials are poised to drive the future of business. The 53.5 million-strong millennial workforce has risen rapidly and surpassed Generation X to represent the largest share of the American workforce. Millennials offer truly unique skills and fresh, innovative ideas. They are highly educated, adaptable, tech-savvy and quick learners. Their skills and attitude are crucial for businesses seeking to innovate, compete successfully and...
Think about the worst boss you ever had. Remember what it felt like to go to work every day, knowing you had to report to someone who didn’t value your contributions and didn’t respect you as a person.
Now, think about the best boss you ever had. The person who was tough but fair, and who made you feel like your work mattered.
Reflect back on your performance under both of those people. Where did you shine and where did you struggle?...
So you came up with an idea, got yourself some funding, developed a product, gained customer traction, found a market niche, and generated some revenue. Maybe even a lot of revenue. That’s great. You’ve gone farther than the vast majority of your peers.
The problem is, you can’t just keep putting one foot in front of the other forever. Sooner or later you’ll reach a point where that no longer works. You have to have an...
05By Chad Brooks
To remain successful for multiple generations, it's critical that family businesses have a solid succession plan in place.
For a smooth leadership transition that allows for continued growth and innovation, family businesses need to begin laying the groundwork for the succession process long before it is needed, according to a new study from EY (an assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services provider) and Kennesaw State University.
011 by Scott Shane
In 2013, the number of American businesses without employees per thousand people rose by 0.4 percent to hit a record of 72.72 non-employers for every thousand residents, Census Bureau data reveal. In the same year, average sales at these businesses nudged down by 0.2 percent — about $80 (in 2011 dollars) — to $44,357.
Are rising numbers of non-employers outstripping demand for what they have to sell? Census data from 1997 to 2013 suggest...
Everybody wants to be liked. The need for social acceptance is something we all long for and we feel conflicted when we don't have it. It’s natural to want to conform and avoid uncertainty. However, if we apply this theory to business then being unaccepted actually becomes a strong brand.
For example, when Dollar Shave Club launched it did so through YouTube videos using off-beat, sarcastic humor that many office cultures frown upon....
Garnering support for a new business idea is as much about the art of the pitch as it is the science of the throw. As with any presentation, content may be king, but delivery is queen, and without the two mutually supporting each other, your business kingdom will lack support -- or strikeout completely.
Building a relationship of any kind takes time whether it’s with investors, vendors, new business partners or customers....
026By Nicole Fallon Taylor
One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a leader is thinking you always need to have the answer. Yes, people look to you for guidance, but part of guiding a team means helping them learn and discover solutions for themselves, rather than feeding them the "right" answers — which may not even be right at all.
Instead, you should strive to be curious, open-minded and inquisitive, which will in turn drive your employees to do the...
In kindergarten, there was the game of telephone -- which may have happened in high school for some. A message was sent from the leader and shared quietly from one person to another with the goal that the last message received equaled the initial message sent. But what typically happened? The message sent was never, ever the message received.
Now, apply this concept to the organization, where 5-year-olds aren’t running the show (although...
017 by Annie Pilon
No matter where you are in your business journey, it’s never too early or late to learn. From those just thinking about starting a business to seasoned veterans, there are always new lessons to be learned.
Members of the small business community have learned plenty of those lessons. Advice and insights for business owners new and old are included in this week’s Small Business Trends Community News and Information Roundup.
Check Out These...