Similar Negotiation Skills Needed in Business and Family Disputes

Whether you are participating in a business transaction or dispute resolution. If you plan on having a continued relationship with the person on the other side, it is imperative that you understand the principles of negotiation. I deal with small business owners looking to grow their business, or needing to resolve an issue with a current or former customer. I also work with husbands and wives interested in resolving family disputes through mediation. A common thread runs through these situations when the parties intend to have ongoing relationships after the negotiation is completed. Sometimes an ongoing relationship is not desired, but the situation requires long-term contact and communication.

This common thread is avoiding greed. In a situation where a small business owner wishes to grow his business by connecting with potential new clients, earning their trust, and gaining their business. It is essential to not come off as greedy, or in it only for your own benefit. Appreciation for their business, and an understanding that the relationship is mutual and not one sided helps to build loyalty and create a long-term relationship. The same goes for business and family disputes. If a dispute arises and you look to negotiate with the other party to resolve the issue, the other party must be able to see a benefit to working with you. There must be a reason why the solution you desire appeals to them or else negotiation efforts will break down. No one wants to feel taken advantage of, or duped into a solution they will not be happy with.

Check out Chris Myers’ article titled, 3 Overlooked Negotiation Skills Entrepreneurs Need To Master, published on Forbes.com, March 27, 2017. He has a great story of how he learned negotiation skills while becoming an entrepreneur.

Components of a Business Plan

business plan pic

If you’ve been cruising the web-sphere for business ideas and think you are ready to tackle your business plan, here are many of the common components, or page headings for your document called the Business Plan. If you’re a little nervous about creating your own business plan, check out the World Wide Web for FREE templates to get you started. Some websites even have one-page business plans.

I’m not yet sure how I feel about a one-page business plan. While I feel that it is possible for a select group of businesses, I’m just not sure that you can have a well thought out plan for business, let alone an all-inclusive document in just one single page.

Please note that your business plan is not required to have all of the following sections, but it wouldn’t hurt to dedicate some time to contemplating whether a particular section is important to your plan. However, if you are planning on presenting your business plan to a bank or potential investors, you may want to over-include rather than not have a section one of your potential investors feels is important.

There is nothing wrong with being over-prepared. Over-prepared means you though too much about something. It’s under-prepared that looks bad!

  • Cover Page- Include Business Name, pictures if you have them, and the names of the individuals forming the entity
  • Executive summary- A succinct paragraph of what your business is. If you are not sure, search executive summaries on the Internet. Find 3-4 that you like and use them to brainstorm your customized summary.
  • Vision and Mission Statement- Some companies have both a vision and mission statement or one or the other. The vision statement is how you see or want others to see your business as. The mission statement is what your business does. Again, find 3-4 vision and mission statements to get an idea of the format you like and create a custom vision and mission for the organization.
  • Company Description- this section can be more than one paragraph and more detailed than the summary.
  • Products and/or services- For micro- or super-small businesses, focus on one or two main products or services. Larger organizations will have divisions or possibly product lines.
  • Market Analysis- What did you find out about the market for your product or service. Include competitor information. Is the market ready for- or can the market handle your product or service. Why?
  • Marketing and Sales- Some business plans include a completely separate marketing plan. How do you plan to get the public to know about your product or service? Additionally, who and how will you sell it?
  • Operations Plan- Business Structure, org chart, and responsibilities.
  • Staff- Key employees and managers
  • Financial Plan- Start-up budget, 12-month, 2 year, and 5 year projections
  • Potential Funding/Investors
  • Appendices- supporting documents and information, and competitor examples

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Tips for Using Social Media Efficiently

4 Tips for Using Social Media Efficiently

  1. Do your Social Media on the weekend- schedule a majority of your social media activities in advance leaving actual interaction with others to an hour a day.
  2. Outsource basics- I feel social media requires some amount of personal interaction to be genuine. If you feel you can’t keep your daily usage to a minimum, think about outsourcing basic posts and focus your energy on communicating with specific individuals.
  3. Set up an editorial calendar- Just like writers and bloggers, create a social media calendar to keep you focused and effective. Make a list of topics you want to talk about or communicate to others on your social media platforms with a consistent message. This is a great way to make sure you are getting your message across and keeping yourself from combing every corner of the Internet.
  4. Know what you are going to say before you turn on the computer. In addition to Tip #3, gather four or five various types of basic post layouts that work well for you and your business. Some businesses do well with profiles, interviews, lists, or product reviews. Combine this strategy with your editorial calendar and you will never draw a blank on what to focus on tomorrow. For example, if your business provides products incorporate a list of bestsellers, profile the designer, publish a pic of the products in action or how they look together.

Social Media in Business: Benefit or Burden?

According to an article published on Social Media Today by Evan Asano,people continue to increase their time spent on social media. The article, How Much Time Do People Spend On Social Media, published January 4, 2017, offers great insight into social media today. According to Asano, Teens today spend up to nine hours on various social media platforms. Of the various online activites one can do on a daily basis, 30% of our time is spent on social media. Furthermore, Asano adds that 60% of that social media interaction is being done from a mobile device.

As a business owner, this can be both a benefit and a burden. If you gain business revenue from the internet and you are capturing income streams from the advent of social media, you are probably pretty happy with the results suggested in this article. If not, it’s probably about time that you brainstorm some ideas to tap into this melting pot of individuals spending time on social media. After all, if they are busy scrolling the internet for what their friends are doing, they probably don’t have time to frequent your establishment.

On the other hand, as a business owner, social media may be a huge burden to your business. If you find yourself spending 30% of your time on social media (which is what the article tells us), you may be taking advantage of the flexibility of being a business owner to a point of hurting your business productivity!

Let’s break it down- let’s say you leave home and work a 10 hour day (pretty average I’d say). 1 hour for lunch, 1 hour for meetings and reviewing yesterdays activities and 30% or 3 hours on social media. We haven’t even gotten started on making money today until your 5th or 6th hour of work. That’s only 3.5 to 4 hours of productive work today. And how many can say that the 4 hours spent on actual work is 100% productive.

Don’t get me wrong. I think social media is a great benefit if used wisely, but it can be a sharp sword if you let it take control of your time. Remember, in business social media is not the end result, but a means to connecting with others in need of your product or service.