Planning & Advisors

Your plan needs to outline two things: how you’ll grow and how you’ll manage financial risks. I was all set to write a column on business planning, employing Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower’s overused quote, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” But then I read Ian Sanders and David Sloly’s booklet, “Unplan Your Business,” […]

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So you thought you had your bases covered when you formed your corporation (or LLC) for your new business.  But forming a company alone may not be enough.  (Surprise!  Ugh.) Yes, you wanted to protect your personal assets from business creditors … but are your business assets protected from personal creditors?  Personal creditors can include: […]

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Post image for Is a Strategic Alliance Right for You?

Don’t partner up with anyone until you ask yourself these 10 questions. Strategic alliances: They’re great when used effectively to expand the range of your product or service offerings; they’re not so great when you collect them like Manolo Blahnik shoes, merely because, well, everyone else has them. “Strategic alliance” is a chic but vague […]

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Post image for How a Small-Business Checklist is Good for Your Health

Last year, I went in for my annual checkup, and did not like what the numbers were telling me. Cholesterol was up. Blood pressure was up. And–horror of horrors–my weight was up (again). I was close to turning my medicine cabinet into a functioning pharmacy, with a full color palette of pills, capsules and tablets. […]

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Post image for One of the Top 10 Reasons Small Businesses Fail

According to Dawn Fotopulos, president of BestSmallBizHelp.com, one of the top 10 reasons small businesses fail is that they overspend on fixed assets. Do you really need that state-of-the-art computer system right out of the gate? Will your customers care whether your desk is make of solid oak or pressed particleboard? Will they even see it? Overspending on […]

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Post image for Basic Training: Zapped! Or, Is $60 Too Much for a Legal Consultation?

Q: What kinds of legal issues do I need to be aware of in my business? And, do all attorneys charge for consultations? I went to one attorney who wanted to charge me $60 for a consultation. A: Not sure where you’re located or what stage your business is in, so it’s hard to tell […]

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Post image for Basic Training: Yearning to Start a Business, But in Which Legal Form?

Q: I am starting an online retail store. I thought about filing my status as a sole proprietor.  Eventually I will change my status to an LLC when I have a physical store. Should I go ahead and file as a sole proprietor or should I just file as an LLC now? A: Particularly for […]

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Q.:  What are my rights as the minority shareholder who is being laid off by majority shareholder?  I’m a guarantor on the company credit line? We are the only guarantors on the credit line. There are two other minority shareholders, one was laid off nine months ago but kept his shares, and the other is […]

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After reading some stats on the growth of women-owned companies, I was tempted to get depressed. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce (2010), 88% of all women business owners are sole proprietorships without employees. 80% of all women-owned businesses earn less than $50,000.  (It’s not so fabulous for men-owned businesses either: 77% for ownership […]

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“Clever people and grocers weigh everything,” said Zorba the Greek.  So do service business owners when it comes to growing revenues.  “Do I want more?” they ask themselves. “Of course!  There’s the mortgage. The kids’ college fund. Mom’s medical expenses. And that bucket list trip to Tahiti!” Yet surely as the sun sets over Bora […]

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