Mom, in your shadow is where I choose to be. I reflect on how much you sacrificed, how much you cared. I used to hate those calls which came sporadically. Calls that seemed to come at the wrong time… when I’m in a meeting, or at a function, or just plain busy with work. Yet all you wanted was just to say hello, I’m thinking of you.
Years later when you became sick, restricted by the pains and incapacitation of physical movements brought on by a stroke, I longed for those calls. I longed just to hear you say hello…, but it was hard for you. All I had was the look in your eyes which said, I still love you my child. I still care. I returned the love and care with more force than I ever could. This warmed your heart and brought the sparkle in your eyes. You were happy…
If you’re one of the many millions of people hoping to start a new business this year, congratulations. This is a journey that you will never forget. There are many twists and turns down the path toward entrepreneurship, and your actions now can make it a much smoother process in the days ahead. Today, the Success Strategies blog touches on a few things that all aspiring entrepreneurs should do when starting a business in 2022.
1. Evaluate Yourself
First and foremost, you have to evaluate yourself. Do you really have what it takes to be an entrepreneur? According to Alcor Investment Services, entrepreneurs don’t procrastinate and are continually solving problems. If you are the type of person that makes plans and takes action on them, you might be a great candidate for entrepreneurship. In addition to these “soft” skills, you should also be at least somewhat versed in marketing, financial management, and customer service.
2. Decide on a Business Structure
Business structures are not just for major corporations. As a small business owner, you have the right to form your own entity. Doing so now can help legitimize your business. Consider filing as an LLC, which is a limited liability company. There are many advantages here, including lower taxes and reducing the possibility of your personal assets being targeted in case of a serious business flaw. You can use a local attorney or an online formation service, though the latter is much more affordable than the former.
3. Utilize Free Tools and Services
Even when you’re a small business, you must be prepared to break out your wallet (more on the financial commitment later on). However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get some things without writing a check. You can use Google Docs to collaborate with your employees and customers and you can even find an image size converter online that allows you to upload photos to your website and social media. Although it might seem like a small thing now, fewer pixels in your images will make your site load faster, which can increase the amount of time customers spend on your domain. Search Engine Journal acknowledges slow load speed as the number one reason that people move to a different website.
4. Stay Motivated
As an entrepreneur, you will experience successes and failures. It is during these failures that you must remember to stay motivated and never give up.
5. Understand the Financial Commitment
Starting a business is a huge financial commitment, and many small business owners are unprepared for the sheer number of checks that get written each week. Remember, you have not only your startup cost but also business filing expenses, taxes, payroll, inventory, and more. Although this might sound like a lot, don’t despair. There are plenty of deductions you can take, especially if you use your home as your office. CPA Mark J. Kohler notes that you may even be able to deduct part of your vehicle expenses as a home-based business owner.
Running your business means prioritizing everything every day. One thing you cannot forget is to pay attention to your customers and the competition to find out what they want. To do this, you will need to do market research and implement a product roadmap when you are ready to launch something new. Use a template (another potentially free online service) that helps you set deadlines and understand where you may have trouble in the process. Having your product launches mapped out ahead of time will help you prioritize and set more reasonable goals.
Launching your own business is one of the best ways to create wealth for yourself and your family. Although it may seem intimidating now, trust that you will soon have the experience to navigate the world of entrepreneurship with your head held high. Remember, no one ever got rich working for someone else, and your fears are the only thing stopping you from mapping out your own path toward success.
About The Author
Nicola Reid is an entrepreneur and small business owner from Texas. She created Business4Today.com to provide access to the resources members of marginalized groups need to turn their entrepreneurial dreams into reality. Through her site, she hopes to support the growing number of people of color, women, and members of the LGBTQ+ community who are taking the leap into small business ownership.
Know where you want to go and make sure the right people know about it.
Are you one of the many who are reluctant to attend Networking events? Then when you do, sit quietly in a corner with no interaction just green with envy? That’s the story of many who hate networking. But it’s a necessary thing to do especially if you are planning to Ditch your Job or Switch it to entrepreneurship. Networking is interacting with others to exchange information and develop professional or social contacts.
Dr. Marcia Ballinger shared her article titled I Hate Networking and tips to do it right. Here I share 3 favs:
Learn from and Focus on Others. A networking meeting is meant for you to learn from and focus on the other person. Not yap about yourself
Get To Know and Build Relationships. The people you are connecting with will almost never have a job. They will, however, have wisdom and ideas, connections and information. Networking is about getting to know the person and making/building a relationship. Job possibilities follow
Engage in Meaningful Conversations. Networking is about having meaningful questions to ask the person you’re meeting. You actually end up doing very little talking.
We have all been there. Times when we feel we are at a crossroad and don’t know whether to stay with the company, or whether to go. It’s not an easy road. Certainly a time for deep reflection and analysis. But it can be done using helpful strategies.
7 Signs That Tells You When To Look for New Opportunities
Extracted from theMuse, here are my top 7 WHENs that you can use to know when it’s time to move on.
When you are unhappy most of the day. What’s the point of being unhappy doing what you do?
When the only way you can move up is when your boss retires. Oh well, need I say more?
When you get passed over for a promotion more than once
When your company is cutting back or your industry is shrinking. Astonished?Commonsense really…extinction is at hand. Be alert. Keep your eyes…
Changing careers can be hard and extremely stressful. It has been rated just below the death of a friend. Indeed it is a dreaded time of contemplation and decision making.
As such it is always a pleasure to share my knowledge and experience with new Graduates, mid-career changers as well as those battling retirement fears as I will do at the Lauderdale Manor’s Community event.
Here’s to connecting and making a difference in the lives of others.
Contactless – Not involving contact. Not requiring touching or interaction between people
Hungry? Order a meal. It’s not a problem, Uber delivers. Need a last minute birthday gift? An outfit to go on the town with your boo? These sure ain’t no problem these days. Amazon delivers, and if you have prime.., that’s even better. You get it in a day!
Smartphone, e-maps, e-mail on the go. Hit the pause button during a movie are things that our little ones can’t fathom living without.
Don’t call me. Text. WhatsApp. Not to mention the gazillion channels on our big screen TVs, yet we still can’t find the right one to watch. Netflix anyone?
Religious? Going to church? Overrated. That’s a thing of the past. Thanks to the pandemic, We meet online. Those old folk shut-ins ain’t got nothing on us.
These days it seems if you drink you can still drive. All you need to do is program your smart car to take you home – driverless… or so you think. I fathom you’re on your own if the cops catch you. And we could go on and on.
Our High Tech World
What has our society come to? Even the Bible has been translated into so many versions that I can hardly recognize John 3:16 anymore. Some versions have totally missed the meaning. But then again who reads the Bible anymore? After all, we are able to listen to all those famous preachers on demand. Who needs to read when we can listen to what they want to share with us. Let them preachers read it and tell us.
We have it all wrong. Our lives need the stillness and quietness that only comes from reading the word and listen to the still small voice. Only then we will be able to hear what’s said to those hurting and in pain. Only then will we be able to perceive what and how the good lord wants us to lead others to him for the peace that only he provides. Only then will we be able to comfort those who mourn. Only then will we be able to rejoice with those who shout with joy unspeakable when their blessings come through.
Our contactless society invites opportunities for :
Going solo means no one has to know. But as often said, what’s done in quiet comes to light when those who are sad find themselves overwhelmed. The effects are the sad fruit of suicidal thoughts which become evident. And… before we jump to say that couldn’t happen to me… reflect on the signs of the rich and famous. Those who suffer in silence unable to face it anymore. Travel enthusiast Anthony Bourdain; Comedian Robin Williams; Miss USA Cheslie Kryst are just a few. We join with their loved ones as they still mourn.
Tis sad indeed. Our contactless society feeds aloneness, even in a crowd.
Let’s together do what we can in our small corner to connect with those behind closed doors. And if they won’t answer… that’s when you counter with direct help. Mental illness is a big thing that we can no longer sweep under the carpet and play hush-hush. Contact those trained to help.
Things To Do
Things we can do are:
Shut up and listen.
Pay attention. There is always a sign(s)
Check in on friends who go quiet or missing
Invade their privacy … but do it wisely, quietly and with caution
Be real. A genuine spirit can be felt just like the hypocritical ones
Don’t be afraid to ask “Are you okay?” It sounds simple but it’s the thing to do
Pray. It works. Ask for wisdom, guidance and that spirit of discernment
Here’s hoping this reflection motivates and inspires you to reach out to a friend or loved one today.
How are you coping in our contactless world? Do share. We would love to hear.
Sometimes we need a little clarification about what’s important these days. I pounced upon Denzel’s caution given to a reporter. It intrigued many so I thought I’d share. Read or listen. It’s her to choose.
If you don’t read the paper you are uninformed. If you do read the paper, you are misinformed. So what do you do? What is the long term effect of too much information? One of the effects is the need to be first, not even to be true anymore. So what responsibility do you have? To tell the truth. Not just to be first. We live in a society now where its just first. Who cares? Get it out there. We don’t care who it hurts. We don’t care who we destroy. Just say it. Sell it. Anything you practice, you’ll get good at…including b.s. ~Denzel Washington
From Tanzania, Jamaica, and across the United States, 6 powerful women in reggae shared their thoughts on women singing, songwriting and the associated struggles of survival in a predominantly male role.
It was a such joy to cohost the event with artistes Marcia Griffiths, Carlene Davis, Jah9, Naomi Cowan, and Etana as we celebrated the occasion of VP Records Miss Pat’s new book. Thanks Dr. Claire Nelson, white-house champion of change and Founder of the Institute of CAribbean Studies, Washington DC
We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.
Becoming a published Author involves nothing but interest and writing. Connect with an agent if you wish to go the traditional route. Interested in being self-published? Here are 7 basic steps to to get you going.
Write. Write. Write. If you don’t write you have nothing to publish
Invest in an Editor. Publish quality work. Nothing turns off readers more than errors in published work. Even if you are a great writer, you are too close to your work. Get it edited.
Book Cover Design. Invest in a Professional Cover design. You can do it yourself but hey, come on. Again this is an issue of quality which increases your selling power (or need I say, the lack thereof)?
Get an ISBN. Needed as a unique identifier for your book. Free ones available but… you get what you ‘pay’ for.
Price it. Decide on your price. Consider books in your genre etc.
Get Your Book Reviewed. People buy based on other’s impression right? So get your book reviewed by bloggers, friends, foe? yikes!
Launch it. Market it. Here’s where the fun begins! It’s not a secret. Market it. Get the word out!