4 Tips to be a Successful Entrepreneur

Taking the path to entrepreneurship provides exciting opportunities, but there’s also no guarantee of success. You can reduce the risks that your venture will fail by adopting a few practices that successful entrepreneurs have already incorporated into their daily lives. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.

Embody the “Go Get ‘Em” Attitude

Each day, you should be prepared to dig in and work your hardest towards achieving success as an entrepreneur, regardless of any setbacks or emotional upheavals you experience. This is also called being gritty because it involves dedicating yourself to the hard work and perseverance that success requires. If you’re not entirely dedicated to your mission, you can’t be surprised when you fail.

Never Stop Challenging Yourself

When you developed your business plan, you set a long-term goal for yourself, but that’s not the only objective that should motivate you. Additionally, you should be setting daily and monthly goals for yourself. Each new goal should be just outside your comfort zone, yet it should also be attainable. As you accomplish a goal, reward yourself and move on to your next objective.

Take Smart Risks

As an entrepreneur, you don’t have the luxury of playing it safe. Failing to take risks will keep you from succeeding, so use your fear of failure to prompt your courage to take a leap of faith here and there. This doesn’t mean taking foolish risks. Each move should be researched to understand your risks ahead of time thoroughly and, if you determine the risk is worth the potential reward, go for it.

Reinforce Your Self-Confidence

Left unchecked, the mind can run rampant with negative thoughts, and those thoughts will influence how the events in your day play out. You’ll have better experiences and handle challenges more aptly when you reinforce positive thinking. As you catch yourself having a negative thought, change your thinking pattern to focus on positive thoughts. Instead of dwelling on your weaknesses, remind yourself of your talents and skills. This will help you build trust in yourself, which is essential in becoming a motivated leader.

As you network with other entrepreneurs, you’ll find more practices and beliefs to adopt. Eventually, taking advice from multiple sources will help you develop your approach. While there’s no one right way to achieve success, using tips from those who have achieved it will ultimately help you reach your goals.

4 of the Best Books for Business Finance Management

How effectively you manage your business’ finances can have a direct impact on how fast it scales. A mismanaged book can be the proverbial chink in your business’ armor. Unfortunately, not all entrepreneurs are academically trained to manage the complex task of cash flow management. To help fill this gap, here are four books you should start reading:

The Intelligent Investor

The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham is a classic book about smart long-term investing. While its contents are more of guidance for aspiring stock and bond investors, the book also covers market trends and cycles and other fundamental cashflow principles that can also be applied to business management. It also gives advice on what company attributes investors should look for when buying stocks, which can be used by entrepreneurs as a guideline to determine financial elements within their company that they should be working to bolster.

Accounting for the Numberphobic

As the book’s title implies, Accounting for the Numberphobic by Dawn Fotopulos discusses the basic accounting principles that drive every business, regardless of size or sector. The book breaks down essential concepts, such as ledgers, financial reports, account statements, profits, and your enterprise’s overall health. It’s ideal reading material for any new business owner who is trying to learn the accounting ropes.

J.K. Lasser’s Small Business Taxes 2020

Written by Barbara Weltman, a seasoned attorney, and business tax expert, J.K. Lasser’s Small Business Taxes 2020 will walk you through the latest tax regulations, IRS policies, and tax planning strategies that govern small-scale enterprises. The book discusses ever-changing tax laws and dispenses tips on how you can best save money when you file for your business taxes next year.

Financial Intelligence

This book by Karen Berman, Joe Knight, and John Case is one of the most recommended finance-related books by the industry’s top minds. It offers structured insight into what the numbers on report sheets and account statements mean. The tips and information are both for personal finance use and for understanding the broader general markets.

There is an extensive literature of finance material that you can peruse online or through a physical copy. Reading about business finance and how to manage your business’ properly can help streamline your cash flow and enable you to make more informed financial decisions.

FTC Legal Upate

This past year the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) filed a baseless lawsuit against Traffic Jam Events, LLC and David J. Jeansonne, II (“Traffic Jam” and “Jeansonne”). This action was in response to Traffic jam and Jeansonne’s success in roundly defeating the FTC’s requested temporary and preliminary injunctive relief, which the Court heard on June 25, 2020, and denied in a written opinion issued on June 26, 2020. In that opinion, the Court made numerous citations to the lack of evidence presented by the FTC to support its claims. 

Following a ruling denying a motion for preliminary injunction, on August 10, 2020, the FTC voluntarily dismissed without prejudice the Federal Complaint against Traffic Jam Events and David Jeansonne. Then on December 28, 2020, the second complaint was finalized and a deal was reached clearing David Jeansonne and Traffic Jam Events™. 

For more information, please contact Traffic Jam Events™

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Finding New Office Space for Your Business

Whether your business is downsizing, has plans of expanding, or has been met with unforeseen circumstances, a relocation might be the only way forward. And while searching for new office space can be quite exciting, especially when there are plenty of budget-friendly options available, it isn’t smart to jump right in without a clear vision of what is needed and what can potentially harm your operation. Here are a few practical tips to aid you on this pivotal quest.

Establish a Clear Budget

You probably have a general idea of how much you are willing to invest in this new space, but you don’t even bother searching for properties unless you have an exact limit. Get clear on how much your business is sure to bring in, and measure it towards the cost of the building and your expenses. This isn’t the time to be overly optimistic as you don’t want to be in this same position just a few months from now.

Thoroughly Research Locations

If you aren’t planning to have customers in and out of your business throughout the day, your shopping pool will be more vast, but as both you and your employees deserve a safe place to work, welfare and security should be at the top of the list. Pay attention to crime rates, find out what is nearby, and determine whether or not the daily commute will be worth it for all parties involved.

Study the Layouts

While the quality of the neighborhood is paramount, the layout is just as crucial. Not only is having enough space to work necessary, but you will also want to account for any office equipment and amenities that will enhance the environment. Choosing a suite that resides in a large building comprised of other suites is beneficial because there are often shared spaces and impressive services available to all tenants and employees.

All in all, finding the ultimate office space is quite simple once you map out your standards and figure out how much you can put towards the cause. While on the search, you will likely spot a few deals that look appealing at first glance, but applying patience and due diligence will be the key to connecting you with the property of your dreams. 

New Year’s Resolutions to Make for Your Business

It’s the end of the year, and now more than ever is the perfect time to take a look back at the past year for your business. Take notice of the areas that can use some improvement, and plan for developing more in the new year. Having a New Year’s resolution to achieve success can help dictate the future of a business. The following New Year’s resolutions can help set your business on the right path heading into 2021.

Operating a business can be overwhelming. There is so much to get done, but the fact of the matter is that not everything has to fall on you. Resolve to learn to delegate, and do more of just that! It’s easy to get caught up in the mindset that we must do everything ourselves for it to get done. We question ourselves as to why we are so tired and stressed out. Delegate tasks to others to help improve a better work-life balance.

While there may be a never-ending list of things to do, always take the time to promote your business. Promotions always slip the business owner’s mind because more pressing matters must be attended to. However, promoting a business is something that should be done consistently. Make this a goal for the new year! Promoting a business is the only way to attract new customers. When promotion is made a priority, the difference can be felt significantly in any given company.

Look around your local community, and you will find plenty of organizations that could use some support– this is especially true right now throughout this COVID-19 outbreak. This New Year, resolve to give back to an organization and support a cause that is meaningful to you. There are numerous ways to give back! Whether through a charitable donation, volunteering, or even serving on a committee that needs your support. Those who take the time to give get back in twofold. Businesses who willingly offer their time in their local communities develop a reputation that is so beneficial to their brand.

Business Trends to Focus on in 2021

Owning a successful business requires owners to stay up to date on their industry’s latest developments. Regardless of the industry that the business is in, being informed on the industry’s overview can help owners stay ahead of the curve when new trends arise. Top business owners are continually looking to expand their business, and those owners looking to get ahead in 2021 should keep an eye on these trends.

Mobile Employee Communication

Millennials currently makeup 50% of the workforce and are projected to represent about 75% of it by 2025. If there is one thing companies need to know about millennials, they are tech-savvy and mobile-driven, and it’s important to keep them focused and engaged. It’sIt’s important to adapt communication efforts to be mobile-friendly. Switching to a communication app offers managers a direct channel to their employees to boost communication efforts within your team. 

The Growth of Remote Work

As companies continue to adjust to Covid-19, many have dropped their office spaces and shifted their companies to remote work. Office space rental isn’t cheap, and any business that is looking to cut costs right now is doing so by allowing their employees to work from home while subletting the office space. Remote work is appealing to more and more businesses as working the normal 9 to 5 five days a week is no longer the norm. 

Non-Monetary Perks and Benefits

While the ability to work from home used to be considered a perk at many companies, many employees are looking for other perks at their job that are not money-related. Traditional compensation packages that focus on 401(k) and bonuses aren’t as compelling to employees anymore. Instead, they are looking for their work experience to include things like telecommunication, flexible work schedules, paid time off, paternity leave, and much more. These perks are nice to have, and companies need to recognize that engaged employees will help them get key business results! 

Customer Service

Personalized customer service experiences are becoming the norm for companies as we move towards 2021. Customers have their wants and needs when it comes to engaging with your business, and it’s important that smart personalization engines can recognize what your customers are interacting with. 

What trends are you most looking forward to taking off in 2021?

Creating a Social Media Presence for Your Business

Most adults use social media every day, making it a critical part of any business strategy. Social media has become an easy way for individuals to connect to their family and friends and connect to their favorite businesses. But as a business, a large social media following doesn’t instantly happen overnight. If your business lacks a social media presence, the following tips can help you boost audience engagement, build brand awareness, and help your business reach new markets.

Create a Plan

Social media tools are easy to use and can help you start creating organic posts. But any business owner knows you can just jump right in, and you need to make a plan! The same can be said when posting on social media. 

Without creating a social media plan, you will have no clear goal of what you’re trying to accomplish with your posts. Your social media plan should be SMART, specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely, and should be built around goals and metrics that will impact your business. 

Pick Your Platforms

It’s essential to pick your business’s right channels with hundreds of social media platforms out there. Do not assume that most of your audience just spends time on one specific channel. It’s also important to make sure you are hitting the right channels to target your specific audience. Most people are on the seven major social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, and Reddit, but that does not mean that all seven of those platforms are right for your business.

Know and Grow the Audience

To find your target audience, it’s important to start compiling data on your current customer base and then dig even deeper by looking at social media analytics. Once you start developing a better understanding of who your business is serving, you’ll be able to gain a better picture of who you should be interacting with online. 

Once you have a clearer picture of your audience, circle back to your social media plan, and look for ways to reach more people that fit your audience profile. Businesses will often use this as an opportunity to test ads on platforms like Instagram and Facebook. If your business serves a local customer base, make sure these ads target individuals within a range of your business location!

Keeping Your Business Organized for Success

An organized business is more successful because it ensures accuracy and efficiency. While established business owners eventually understand this concept, new business owners and entrepreneurs go through a costly trial and error period before reaching that point. If you want to eliminate that learning curve, these tips will help you create an efficient business model that’s well-positioned for growth.

Ditch the Filing Cabinets

You no longer need to keep every document physically available. Make use of cloud storage to keep a record of most of your documents. While you should still keep important and relevant documents available in print format, most information should be stored digitally. You can print them later as needed. This frees up a great deal of space in your office, which you can use for other essentials.

Organize Your Social Media Presence

Building a positive brand image requires exploring various options to see where you have the most significant effect on your target demographic groups. Once you reach that point, you should delete any accounts your business will no longer use. This leaves you with just a few account profiles to clean up. Ensure all of the information you provide on these pages is correct and uniform across each social media platform. You should also use the same profile image on every account to ensure followers can find your official account on every site you use.

Use Bookkeeping Software

Accounting software has advanced considerably in recent years, with some programs using smart technology to keep accurate records of inventories, raw materials, and other resources. This ensures your business accounts are separate from your accounts while also helping you get an accurate assessment of your business at a glance. You can generate reports, graphs, and charts to analyze the information you need to make important financial decisions. This will help you prevent overspending that could cripple your budget.

As you implement these tips and develop your strategies, you’ll find that keeping your business more organized also makes its management more straightforward. You’ll have everything you need readily available, which will eliminate most of the stress that business managers experience. This will leave you more time to pursue effective marketing campaigns to boost your business’ growth.

What Does it Mean to be an Entrepreneur?

In a nutshell, an entrepreneur is someone who builds and runs his/her own business. And while the dictionary definition of what it means to be an entrepreneur is a widely known piece of information, only a few people understand what it means to be in business. Here are qualities that make up the core of an entrepreneur:

Has a Diverse Skill Set

Entrepreneurs are known for having a diverse range of skills and expertise to effectively navigate the day-to-day and significant picture challenges of their respective industries. Aspiring entrepreneurs should proactively seek out new skills that they can add to their existing repertoire. For instance, those whose background is in finance or economics can use their weekends to learn tech-related skills, such as web design or mobile app development.

Has Absolute Command of His/Her Finances

While rags-to-riches stories of billionaires, like Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs, are great for motivating those with little money to spare, these cases should be more of an exception rather than the rule. Aspiring entrepreneurs should make sure that they are financially stable before taking on a financially demanding project as a business entity. If your finances are rocky, you will have difficulty making the right decisions to move your business forward.

Is Driven By a Deep Purpose

Real entrepreneurs are working towards something they feel genuinely passionate about. While making money is the goal, it shouldn’t be the only factor to consider when deciding what business to get into. Identify what bigger purpose your business serves.

Is Ready to Put in the Work

Anyone can claim that they’re an entrepreneur. But when it comes to putting in the effort of filing and submitting legal requirements, running marketing campaigns on various channels, and working on eliminating bottlenecks on product or service production, they fall short. Be ready to put in the time and effort demanded by your business.

These are only a few of the many qualities an entrepreneur should possess to compete in his/her respective niche. Other attributes that make up an effective entrepreneur include managing risk, leading other people, and selling any product or service to anyone.

5 Tips for Getting Your Business Involved in the Community

Building a positive reputation and presence in the marketplace is a top priority for any business. Community involvement is becoming a valuable mechanism for business owners. Here are five tips for businesses’ participation in local communities.

Focus on Real Local Needs

Many communities have an array of outlets for volunteering and contributing to the betterment of the local area. When you select ways for your business to get involved in the local community, look for real needs in the community. Get to know the populations within your community, such as homeless, underprivileged children, animals in shelters, and other demographics. Speak with your customers and employees to learn about what they value and how they would like to see the community improve.

Engage Your Employees

Your employees will be deeply involved in many community activities, so they need to feel passionate about their efforts. Share your vision for how you hope to help the local community and get them excited about the activities you have planned soon.

Be Consistent and Dependable

Once you commit to a neighborhood or non-profit, consistency and dependability, arrive where you promised to be and on time. Also, make sure that your group of employees act with the same attitude and stay positive throughout the event. People take notice of people’s attitudes during community events, and you want your staff to be compassionate, supportive, and happy to get involved.

Celebrate the Involvement

You want to reward your employees for taking time from their personal lives to represent your business in the community. Make sure to set aside time for recognition and employee events. Share how your business involved in the community enhanced people’s lives and give credit to the staff who showed dedication, leadership, and good interpersonal skills.

Invite New Opportunities

After you do your first community event, let other organizations in the community know that you would like to support them as well. You can also continue to work with the same organizations to coordinate the next event. This demonstrates a true commitment to the local community and shows that you stand ready to help out in any possible way.