Business Ideas- Anything to do @ Weddings!

Hey Ladies and Gentleman,  Wedding Business

If you haven’t thought about it before, take some time and do some research in the wedding industry. For decades, it’s been a billion dollar industry.  Times are changing, band things are only getting better!

Whether it is photography, music and sound, dancing, planning, or venues, there is much opportunity for the creative and romantic. From food trucks to cupcakes and fresh garden flowers to crape paper DIY’s, wedding businesses are exploding.

The great thing for start-ups is that weddings are no longer super-pricey and over the top. Brides are interested in more realistic, simple events. For the wedding business owner, this is a dream come true. No more high-priced inventory, or one-time use items.

 

Are you Ready for Some Football?

Shout out to all the female participants in Women’s football! WFA championship

This weekend is the Women’s Football Alliance Championship Weekend. July 21-22, 2017 the WFA is having their 2017 Division I, II, and III final showdown in Pennsylvania.

To those that don’t know, women’s football has been in existence for well over 40 years. Today, women’s football is still run with a grass roots approach. Teams work in their local area to promote the sport and gain local sponsorship. If you can’t make it to the Championship, be sure to check out a game. With over 50 teams throughout the U.S., there is bound to be a team in your area!

How to Make the Most of Your Workday?

time

I thought I would take the time to answer a question I was asked earlier in the week. I’m guessing that most business owners would have their own way of answering this.

Throughout the years, I have incorporated different methods and strategies to try and get more out of my workday. As a long-time business owner and parent, it has always been essential to make the most of every workday to maintain a high level of productivity. With multiple responsibilities (personal and business related) it is imperative to come up with your own strategies to get the most bang for your buck when it comes to productive workday time!

The best tip I have -that took me a long time to learn- is to STOP multitasking. As a parent, I was a huger proponent of multitasking. Now when it comes to getting the dishwasher going while the dryer is drying a load of laundry and the Roomba is vacuuming the den, that is perfectly find. I promote any use of technology that saves you time and money! However, when it comes to focused, effective use of your own brainpower, multitasking is a scam. Several studies have come out to show that multitasking is much less effective than once thought. Law school really brought this one into reality for me. I found that 30 minutes in a quiet room would allow me to really focus on the material or task at hand and really allowed me to comprehend things and make decisions quicker.

The #1 system or process I use to promote productivity is time blocking. Again, studies have shown that transitioning between tasks or ideas, bogs down the mind and creating downtime and wasted minutes in moving from one thing to the other. I schedule 1-2 hour time blocks that I devote to specific topics. Unfortunately, emergencies or interruptions may occur. This is normal, but time blocking allows you to get back on task quickly with limited time wasted.

My favorite new piece of new technology for productivity is audio typing. As you read this, you may be one of the individuals that have been doing this for years, but I just happened upon this a few months ago. The basic premise is that you speak much faster than you type. So, if you are in a business or occupation that requires a lot of document preparation (Lawyer, bloggers, writer, etc.) you can actually audio type almost three times faster than regular typing. Most smart phones and current computers have the technology already built in. You probably don’t need any additional microphone or other device to start audio typing today. Several authors shared that audio typing has allowed them to write books in weeks.

These are just three things I do to make the most of my workday.

Hard-selling is Hurting Your Business

 

As I was finishing up social media and closing for the day, I took a moment to check my e-mail. A well-known business consultant was posting a plea for people to STOP Hard-selling.                                       salesman

Hard-selling happens to be one of my pet-peeves. I was sure that I had written about it before because I despise it so much. After looking, I had never written anything about hard-selling-what it is, why not to, what a better alternative is.

We all have fallen victim to hard-selling tactics. The picture that usually comes to mind is a used car salesman (please note, I have a couple great friends that are used car sales persons, that don’t do this), another may be a store at the mall that wants you to come inside ad try a product. Another example, if you’ve ever been to Las Vegas, is the salespeople that ask if you are going to be staying for another night. They offer you a FREE night at a super, deluxe villa. It’s their sales ploy to get you in their building and sell you something.

It’s somewhat harassing and embarrassing for the person being sold to. I can’t imagine how it feels to depend on this approach to sell your product or service.

I won’t get too much into the psychology of it, but this approach is usually used by individuals promoting a product or services they don’t necessarily believe in or understand.

As a business owner, it is your number one job to know your product, know how it benefits others, and believe in your product. Years ago, there were telephone solicitors that would call up and ask you to change telephone service providers from AT&T to MCI to Sprint. (If you remember MCI, I’m pretty impressed). The salesperson would tout all the savings and added benefits and people would switch service providers. Stockbrokers would cold call people out of the phonebook- and people would buy!

People actually sent $5000 or $10,000 to a stockbroker to buy stock in XYZ as a result of one call from a stranger.

hello friendTimes have changed, folks. Not only have people been scammed, they are less trustworthy, and they are smarter. A great business man told me recently, it’s not that so many businesses are bad, they are failing because so many businesses are good.

For generations, businesses could continue to run even with bad customer service, poor products, and shoddy work. Today, people are smarter and more businesses are better at what they do that in the past. The market is more competitive, so you can’t simply cold call and make a sale. You must show someone who you are, why they need your product, and why they should buy from you.

As people get smarter, they can see through the sales-y pitch you are feeding them. People do not want to be sold. They don’t want to waste their time or money. If they get the impression that you have sold them or want to sell them something they don’t feel a need for now. They are not going to buy.

That doesn’t mean that they won’t need it later. But if you waste that opportunity by trying to sell them when they aren’t interested, they will never want to buy from you even if they do find a need for it in the future. So, slow down on the hard sale, and give people time to decide if they want your product, if it has value to them, and if they want to buy it from you!

5 Business Books I’m Reading (or Just Finished)

As a business owner, it is important to be a lifelong learner. I am constantly reading about the topics that are important to me. Unfortunately, (or not) I do not spend much time on fiction books. Business and law are my dreams and reality!  IMG_0229

With technology and strategy changing so fast, it is important to stay on top of new ideas and exploring new directions. I strive to read a book or two per week. I thought I’d share a list of business books that I just finished or am currently reading.

 

Business Boutique: A Woman’s Guide for Making Money Doing What She Loves

by Christy Wright

How Successful People Think: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life

by John C. Maxwell

Small Time Operator: How to Start Your Own Business, Keep Your Books, Pay Your Taxes, and Stay Out of Trouble

by Bernard B. Kamoroff C.P.A.

The Young Entrepreneur’s Guide to Starting and Running a Business: Turn Your Ideas into Money!

by Steve Mariotti

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It

by Michael E. Gerber

To promote transparency, please note that I was not paid for the contents of this post. Happy reading!

 

Get Your Business Ready for Summer

Are you ready for the dog days of summer?IMG_1591[1]

For some, the summer means lying around the pool with unlimited lemonade and an umbrella overhead with a convenient misting system. For others, it’s business as usual! If your concerned about how the summer is going to impact your business, plan ahead and make the summer your best quarter yet!

Many business owners run their businesses the same way all four seasons. They set up a marketing plan with the goal of promoting their services or products without any thought to the changes that occur throughout the year.  It’s important to realize that business is different in the summer and recognize how this should affect your marketing efforts and will impact your bottom line.

Typically, one would think of clothing retailers and travel-centered businesses as examples of businesses that would be most affected by the seasonal changes that summer brings. A few others come to mind as well, like rental property, or even children’s dance studios (most do not provide dance class during the summer because of summer travel).

IMG_1589[1]But it is important that other businesses recognize that beautiful weather and time off from school can impact more than the typical businesses you often think of.

Take the time to brainstorm how your business may be impacted by the following:

  • Increased time available for children and teens
  • Increased demand on a parent’s time (possibly)
  • Hot whether equals less casual attire (at home and in the office)
  • Increased level of boredom for children at home while parents are working
  • Decreased funds due to having to entertain and feed kids all day, every day
  • Decreased local socializing and purchases due to family vacations and travel out of town or out of state
  • More or less outings to restaurants due to kids being out-of-school

The above list are just some examples that may affect your community during the summer months. On the other hand, your locale may see an opposite affect. For example, if you live in a vacation destination, you may have increase in traffic. Additionally, explore other changes (not just around family and children) that may affect your business.

Some people increase the amount of reading they do during the summer months. Others hire landscapers to free up time while DIYers may take on yard work to be outside more.

Evaluate changes in the market that could impact your business in the summer, and plan ways to reduce any negative impact they may have on your business.

Possible solutions to making the summer a great experience for you, your family, and your business include:

  • Using time-saving technology to schedule obligations in advance
  • Incorporate children into your daily business routine
  • Create a different marketing strategy or campaign for your business to utilize positive changes the season brings
  • Plan ahead to occupy children while you take care of your business responsibilities
  • Include rest and relaxation into your summer quarter and you would feel like you missed out

Feel good about the plan you’ve created to enjoy and make money during the summer. Look forward and do the same for the Fall! You’ll feel more prepared for the months ahead and reduce any negative affects the next season brings with it.

Practicing Conscientious Business

christmas parade

Give back to the community!

Conscientious businesses are also referred to as conscious business or conscious capitalism. They are businesses that choose to follow a business strategy that includes corporate social responsibility. Conscientious businesses approach day-to-day operations with an underlying awareness of purpose. This purpose is value-based and shines through from an organizations mission to its overall impact on the community.

Conscientious business is not just about profits, but an ongoing process of building relationships with other organizations as well as creating a better community. Some conscious businesses even express their efforts in reducing the impact their products and services have on the local environment and planet as a whole.

The unique component of conscientious business is that sometimes the fundamental principle of profitability, one of the most important aspects of for-profit businesses, conflicts with one’s interest in helping others or the overall social good.

On a global level, conscientious business can include working with environmentally-friendly distributors to creating sustainable product packaging. Overall, a conscious business is seeking to minimize its environmental impact on the planet.

A more local approach to conscious business would be to promote your positive impact on the people, businesses, and the community in which you live. Investing your time and energy in your community results in better local environment from a socio-economic standpoint, as well as, build relationships and promote purpose. Improving your community can include such things as working to improve parks and recreation programs for the summer, or striving to reduce hunger among your neighbors.

The great thing about conscientious business is that the efforts of the few have an exponential impact of the community at large. What can you do to make an impact on your community?