Tablets are more than just high tech toys, and in fact can have many applications for small business owners who choose to integrate the technology into their business models. The wonderful thing about them is that, thanks to downloadable apps and other tweaks they can be applied to a huge range of different tasks with a little programming and imagination. Here are a few ways that business owners are already utilizing tablets to help streamline their operations. Mobile sales platforms. The more places you can make transactions the better, especially if you plan on taking your products on the road. Many businesses use tablets for this, as with simple sales management software they are able to catalog transactions as well as process credit cards and log digital signatures. Some adventurous business owners even use tablets to log transactions using bitcoins, but whether your business is ready to use cryptocurrency or just wants to branch out how and where it can accept payment is up to you. Collecting and

As more and more people join the ranks of small business owners in the US, the diversity of languages and cultures in business continues to increase. Depending on your business, you may also have employees who speak a different first language than English, or English may be your second language yourself. The presence of multiple languages in a work environment can be a great thing, allowing you to serve more customers with stronger support and allow non-native speakers to feel more at home, but if there is a language barrier between employees at times is can create some complications. Luckily, it’s fairly simple to keep your employees on the same page regardless of a language barrier if you take the time to create some HR strategies. Post written materials in both languages. This seemingly obvious piece of advice unfortunately gets overlooked all too often. If you have two or more different languages in your work environment, why would you only post notices in one of these

Let’s face it, the office is not always the most energetic place to be. When those long and hot Summer days finally arrive, the energy in the office can often take a hit, and in the worst case this can result in a palpable loss of productivity. In order to keep your self and your staff feeling excited and ready to take on each week’s challenges, there’s a lot they you can do to keep the mood up. While turning the office from a place for work into a place for recreation is not the goal, that’s not to say that you cannot inject some fun into the atmosphere to keep people awake, on their toes, and most importantly, positively engaged with the goals that they have set for themselves. Touch base with your team. This is the most simple thing that we can recommend, and if your’e not already doing it, then start with this. Regularly keeping on contact with your employees is the strongest

Many will point out that altruism is it’s own reward, and that is certainly true. The value one gets out of helping another person is truly the unique and special feeling that it brings. That being said, there are plenty of other good reasons why a small business should consider ways of giving back to their communities, not all of them solely based on the positive moral quality of those who help others. These benefits include positive PR, networking and . There are as many ways of making a positive community impact as there are businesses, so finding a way to participate that you are comfortable with can be done with just a little thought and a few helpful suggestions. Do you run an artisanal business? If this is the case, consider holding a weekend craft demonstration. Inviting a group to check out your creative processes is a wonderful way to give back, especially to younger generations in order to inspire the next skilled craftsmen who will

Small business owners who are in the market for business to business services and products generally have social media presences put together on the biggest and most accepted networks. These include Facebook, Twitter, and G+ to name some of the first that leap to mind. However, the wider the dragnet cast for business, generally the better off you will be, and small business owners should consider the fact that maintaining a presence on just the three or four most obvious social networks is missing a much larger and more vibrant social media picture. If you are already pretty comfortable using the “big three”, then chances are you stand a lot to gain by taking the social game you’ve already honed and applying it to some other social media networks. Here are a few that you have probably already heard about, but may not yet have tried. LinkedIn. Ok, so you most likely have a profile here already, and chances are also good that you have even

As a small business owner, one of the skills essential to your success is learning to gauge when a task needs to be done on a right away basis and when it can wait. The art of prioritizing can seem incredibly simple out of the moment, but in the middle of a hectic week when you are scrambling to get something done and an employee comes up to you with another supposed emergency, knowing what to focus your attention on and what to put on the back burner for the next few hours can make a lot of difference, especially when valuable relationships are on the line. Determining what is the most important thing to do takes practice as well as a certain level of insight. It is often better to get something that you are already in the process of doing completed than go from task to task. Your employees may interrupt you while you are in the middle of something, but unless it truly

At a certain point in the growth of a small business, the possibility of moving to a secondary location becomes less of an aspiration and more of an immediate possibility, but bad credit can often stand in the way of this goal. Alternatives to bad credit business loans make it possible for small business owners to use the strength of their business’s monthly sales to get approved for funding with much less emphasis on their bad credit score. In order to effectively utilize these financing options for that purpose, small business owners should plan and verify a few things before they take the plunge and apply for their bad credit business financing. Verify that the location you have chosen is desirable. Location is a huge factor that can make or break the opening of a second location. While you might love a space for many reasons, it’s a mistake to go through the trouble of applying for a bad credit business loan alternative and then the

Hashtags are a byproduct of the internet and it’s pervasive influence on our culture at large. They have even begun to creep into our colloquial speech patterns thanks to the hilarious lampooning of them by Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon. But aside from appearing everywhere and being the butt of jokes related to their overuse, what is their significance for small business owners, and how can they turn them from a cloudy concept into something useful? Let’s start simple: What is a Hashtag for? A hashtag, also known as a pound sign (#), first came into existence on Twitter by the user base as a way to quickly categorize and identify tweets on a certain topic, for example, #smallbiz pertains to small business topics and serves as a shorthand for those who are searching for related content. While the use of the hashtag began on twitter, as it gained acceptance it’s use has spread to all manner of social networks, including Facebook, G+, and Instagram to

  http://www.pe.com/business/business-columns/20140320-small-business-centers-seriously-hit-by-cuts-in-2013.ece http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/columnist/abrams/2014/03/21/small-business-development-centers/6653961/ Photo Credit to Luca Nebuloni on Flickr

The quality of leadership is one that should be highly valued by small business owners. After all, as business owners they exercise their own leadership skills every day. The purpose of leadership skills is to allow a group of small business employees to function as a more tightly knit group. Contrary to what one may think, promoting leadership does not mean promoting some employees over others, although in a management role one would expect a high degree of leadership on the part of your employee. What leadership skills give to small business employees is the power to think  in critical ways themselves, analyze and respond to problems and communicate better as a unit. It is natural that your employees will excel in different areas. If they are all trained in leadership skills, then that will allow them to complement each other’s talents and step up in turn when they are most qualified to take charge. There are many leadership qualities you should promote in your

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