A recent article on Vox.com raised an interesting point about the aging of the baby boomer generation in relation to entrepreneurship in the US.  As the Boomer generation has passed middle age, the number of American businesses that are over 15 years old has also been steadily gaining since the 90’s. Conversely, the proportion of younger businesses has gone down. When reconciled against the idea of prime business founding years being in a person’s late 30’s to early 40’s, the trend seems to make sense as demonstrating a dip in new entrepreneurship that is directly linked to the aging population. Does age really have a bearing on entrepreneurship? It can be hard to say whether or not a person’s age has the potential to influence their ability to be successful when there are so many other factors involved in making it as an entrepreneur. There are also plenty of examples to point to that would suggest age is not the defining factor in an entrepreneurs

The cloud, free CRM tools, and digital calendars can help small business owners reach levels of organization and efficiency that would be impossible without the benefit of technology. However, much in the same way that e-books can never truly replace a paper copy for some bibliophiles, the utility of physical note taking should not be ignored by small business owners, even in the event that they are also using digital organizational aids. There are multiple reasons to take notes, and in lieu of pen and paper, many tablets support handwriting style data entry, which for some business owners compounds even further on the utility of physical note taking by converting it into organized digital outlines. It can help business owners remember important points more easily. The act of physically writing is linked to stronger retention of information, and according to lifehacker, allows for a deeper connection with the meaning behind what is written in comparison with typed notations. In business, when recall of important details is

While news of the recovering economy and increasing small business loan volume should be a cause for celebration, many small business owners aren’t feeling the sense of relief that others are reporting on. The Huffington Post recently pointed to statistics that paint a slightly different, yet importantly distinct picture. Business loans have gone up, but mostly to larger, more established businesses, while volume for medium and smaller businesses has actually gone down. Big banks are moving progressively farther away from small business lending, or are focusing on businesses that, while technically included in the category of SMBs, are towards the larger end of the spectrum and considered to be safer bets. Small business owners often don’t have traction with banks that have higher standards for approval than many of them are able to meet. Bad credit is a major issue on the part of small business owners looking for capital, but other issues that can stop them from getting approvals include being in industries that

The force of habit  is a powerful thing. It causes us to act in ways that can either help or hinder, and even when a habit is understood to be a bad one, it is not so simple to break. Likewise, a good habit, once adopted, can allow you to excel without seeming to apply effort. That’s why small business owners should do their best to support some positive habits. Remind yourself of good habits you are trying to start. It’s pretty tough to get a habit started, commensurate with the effort required to break it. That’s why it’s a good idea to set reminders for yourself, at least when getting started creating a positive behavior. There are many organizational apps out there, and you can find one that suits your taste. You may want to try any.do, which is a favorite in the Horizon office. Create some realistic goals. The problem with goal setting is often that it is easy to do, but tougher to get

There are many financial products geared for small business owners out there. Since the financing landscape can be so alien and complex, small business owners might not be fully aware of the range of options available to them. For small business owners who, due to bad credit or other financial issues, can’t find financing from traditional small business loan programs, the issue can become a lot cloudier. Aside from taking the time to create a plan regarding when to apply for financing, they also need to consider what they are eligible for in the first place. Where bad credit business loan alternatives fit in. More commonly known as merchant cash advance, these products function similarly to small business loans, but emphasize monthly sales over credit score as their main criteria for approval. These products are typically much faster to get approved for than business loans since they don’t require collateral, so for business owners who have bad credit or for those who simply need fast access to

No matter what industry you are in, there will most likely be some events around the country that you should consider attending. Whether you are interested in gaining some new expertise or sharing what you know at a seminar, going out and showcasing your products at a trade show or giving back to the community at a fundraiser or local event, there are plenty of ways to put your business out there through attending business related gatherings. The only problem for most business owners is deciding which ones are worthwhile and which are more trouble than they are worth. In order to figure out where they can make room in their schedules, the following steps can  be used. First, identify what events are out there. You can use social media for this, simply asking business connections what events are coming up is a simple and good idea. When you find out what is available, you may then wish to categorize the events by type: trade show

Business owners who maintain webpages for e-commerce will often have forms on their websites that customers can fill out. These forms can serve many purposes, from collecting feedback or comments, to serving as order forms or leads that sales teams can follow up on by pitching prospective customers. The ability to automatically collect user submitted information through a webpage means that, depending on your traffic, you can process tons more business than you would be able to follow up with if you only had a hotline or physical location to work with. That being said, one of the problems created by adding forms is the potential for your inbox to be flooded with spam leads. Spam leads are usually pretty easy to identify, containing strings of random characters or random phrases. Often, these spam leads will include hyperlinks which you should absolutely not click lest you expose your system to a trojan or virus. While these leads are annoying, since it is usually easy to

Small business owners with bad credit often feel more pressure to remain ahead of industry trends than other business owners given the sometimes fickle nature of the bad credit business financing market. For them to remain competitive and continue to grow their revenues, some innovation and an early adopter attitude can be a major boon. This being said, the fact that business owners, especially those with bad credit, are often pressed for time can make it difficult for them to find the resources and perspective they need to stay on the cutting edge. Luckily, thanks to the internet there is a wealth of information available to small business owners that can be accessed when on the go, as well as tools that can be used to get straight to the best content available, saving you some valuable time. Let Google find content for you. Google Alerts are a busy small business owner’s best friend. Using this tool, you can specify keywords and update frequency, and Google

When your business hinges on the ability of sales people to perform, it is in your best interest to create a script that you can share with your team as a guideline to positive interactions that lead to conversions. Distributing leads to those who can use them is one thing, but your endgame should be enabling all of your sales reps to become star players on your team. The stronger your script is, the faster your reps will be able to jump in to making more sales upon being hired, and even your best salespeople will fall back on a strong script from time to time. This is especially true if your team encounters a standard set of objections or questions with a high degree of frequency. When they already know the best answer to give a concerned customer, it can help them regain control of the situation with poise and politeness. When creating a pitch, identify the concerns of your client. A pitch is not

While there are many things that differ from industry to industry, and even from business to business, there are a few things that remain constant for every business owner. One of these is the need for a formal business plan. A business plan is required for everything from applying for a loan from a bank to recruiting business partners and top level employees, so it pays to have one that is both up to date and up to industry standards at all times. This isn’t a one time thing either. As your business grows and the markets you are in change, you are going to need to reflect this in your business plan with edits, additions and omissions. Something as simple as one key piece of information that is either wrong or outdated can make your business plan look bad no matter how clean the rest of it is, so keeping this document tuned up and ready to be looked at is a wise strategic

TOP css.php