Category Archive: Starting Your Own Business

How to Start Up a Green Accommodation Business

~by Lillian Connors~


green accommodation businessAccording to a recent report, green hotels have become the most popular option when it comes to choosing accommodations. In fact, every fourth person in America will consciously search for green accommodations in order to make their travels eco-friendlier. That being said, it’s no wonder that green accommodation businesses are popular among entrepreneurs. It turns out that going green isn’t just good for the planet, but for your entrepreneurial spirit, too.

So, if you’re interested – here are several things to consider when starting up a green accommodation business.

Waste management

Recycling is the first thing that crosses anyone’s mind when eco-friendliness is mentioned, and it really is one of the most important values to promote in your green business. You can start by providing every room with recycling baskets for different types of waste so the sorting process can start as early as possible. Don’t forget to put bins in all other areas of your hotel.

Try to opt for recycled materials as much as possible. After all, that’s the best way to set up an example both for your guests and your employees. Of course, the most important thing is to put an effort into minimizing waste production completely. So buy in bulk whatever you can to minimize packaging, and avoid disposable items whenever you can.

Keep your maintenance green

The way you clean your green hotel matters too – green cleaning products and practices are a must for every responsible accommodation business owner. The same goes for paint and pesticides – keep it healthy and natural and not only will you protect the environment, but also the health of your guests and employees. The air inside your facilities will be cleaner, as well, so there’s literally nothing to lose here.

Also, don’t forget that your maintenance staff is your greatest ally in the process of keeping your accommodation business green. Instead of calling them only once something gets broken, try to make them work so they can prevent problems since this is the most important thing in sustainability. Your staff should monitor your energy and water usage and constantly work on improvements in terms of efficiency and sustainability.

Always reuse

green accommodation businessLinen reuse programs are becoming common in many green accommodations, and many guests will be more than happy to cooperate on this one. Just make sure you hang a sign saying that sheets and towels should be used more than once, and watch this water and time-saving measure work like a charm.

Furthermore, when equipping your facility, you can reuse your old beds and mattresses and thus save a ton of money and avoid contributing to the landfills. It takes over 20 years for a mattress to decompose, so if you have to purchase new ones, make sure they’re durable and recyclable. With this in mind, you should learn about best mattresses for the money and choose the ones that will complement your eco-business perfectly.

Save water and energy

Low-flow shower heads and toilets and sink aerators are just some of the things you can install in your accommodation facility in order to reduce water usage. These updates will provide your guests with sufficient comfort, save water, and reduce your water bills at the same time.

The same goes for energy efficiency – employing a building energy management system to give you an overview of the energy consumed throughout your premises might be just the thing for your green business. Switch to LED lighting, use drapes or window films to reduce heating and cooling bills, opt for energy efficient appliances, and, most importantly – educate your guests and staff on making the most of it.

It doesn’t matter if it’s a part of your business strategy or the act of your altruism, sustainability really is leading the pack in accommodation business. Besides, it’s a responsible thing to do and beneficial to the planet, so why not give it a shot and start your own green accommodation business?

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Lillian ConnorsMeet the Author: Lillian Connors

As the Co-Editor of BizzMarkBlog, Lillian Connors believes that the question of business goes far beyond the maximization of profit through different money-grabbing ploys. Instead, she likes to think that ethical principles should be at the core of every commercial venture, paving the way for much more balanced distribution of wealth on a global scale. 
You can check her out on LinkedIn.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Starting an Online Business

~by Joan Herbert~


You’ve decided that you want to start an online business. With the changing economy, the world of commerce is moving out of brick and mortar stores and into the web. With the digital revolution, many professionals are finding out that they can earn a decent living working remotely, from the comfort of their own homes.

online businessMost freelance writers, web designers and coders don’t have a business location and just work from home. Many run their businesses entirely online and take advantage of the multitude of communications options and marketing platforms available today.

Decide What You Are Selling

Are you providing a service or a product? You need to make sure that there is a demand for whatever it is you’re selling and that people will pay for the product or service. You can take advantage of search engines to see what people are searching for, and whether the product or service you’re selling is trending up or down. Once you settle on a product, you can begin planning your marketing strategy.

Find Your Audience

The first thing you need to do is find out who it is that is going to want to pay you for your product or service. You can use search engine keywords to find out what is trending, who is searching, and who is currently providing services to them. Find out where your target audience is most likely to see advertisements. Is it television? Facebook? Pop-up ads? Once you identify your potential customers and find out how to reach them, you can start sourcing your products or designing your services.

Design Your Site

An essential element of any online business is going to be your website. There are many options for this. You can set up an Amazon affiliate site, a Shopify or Etsy site, or you can spend the time building your own independent site. You may need to employ someone with expertise to help design your site and make it accessible, but having a strong website is crucial to strong sales numbers.

Get People to Your Site

online businessOnce your site is up and running and you’re ready to begin selling your product or providing your service, you need to go and get your customers. You need to find them where they are likely to be spending their time, and then you need to market appropriately. If your target audience spends most of their time on Facebook, you need to focus your attention on Facebook content that is easily sharable. If they’re on Twitter, that’s where you need to be, too. The key is to put your advertising in front of your target audience instead of waiting for them to find you.

Build Your Reputation

Maintaining a high-quality product and excellent customer service is important for any business, but it’s critical when you’re just starting out. You want to be certain that your customers are satisfied, and that they will leave good reviews. This may mean going above and beyond, and sometimes losing money to replace a product or redo a contract job, but it can be well worth it in the end. If your customers are upset, they’re going to leave a bad review, which can destroy a new business. Keep your customers happy at all costs in the beginning, at least until your business is thriving and sustainable.

Follow Up with Customers

If they liked your product or service, they’ll buy it again. Send out email advertising or discounts for return customers in order to increase sales. Reward customer loyalty with exclusive savings or market related products directly to them to keep your sales strong.

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Joan HerbertMeet the Author: Joan Herbert

Joan is an Assistant Manager at, a curious individual, avid reader, and a passionate creative writer.

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Professional Business Advice for New Entrepreneurs

~by Rachelle Wilber~


Contrary to the opinion of most people, being a successful entrepreneur requires commitment, sacrifice and knowledge. Most people leaving their careers to try their hand at business are not ready or willing to accept responsibilities that come with starting an enterprise. They just want to fly loose, enjoy the freedom they experience and expect to make more money than they could get in formal employment. Unfortunately, most of them fail, not because they do not have what it takes to succeed, but because they do not have the right attitude.

new entrepreneurs

Here are practical professional tips to help new entrepreneurs start and develop their enterprise.

Develop a Business Goal

To have concrete plans that are core to success in business, you need to have a vision of what you are working to achieve and develop solid business objectives. Although you might have to review the goals regularly and make relevant changes, having a compelling initial business goal is crucial. If you do have a formal job, focus on establishing a business that helps you attain personal goals quickly.

Don’t Quit Your Day Job

If you start a new business while still working, you will have an opportunity to learn new techniques, allocate additional finances, build confidence, and adopt the right business strategies. Since you are likely to make a few mistakes before learning the tricks of the new venture, your job ensures you maintain a healthy level of financial stability, despite potential losses as a result of your mistakes. However, you should leave your job and concentrate on routine business operations if the entity is performing well.

Focus on Creating a Unique Business

new entrepreneursThe similarity in business operations might take you nowhere. In the present times, prospects have a broad range of products or services from which to choose, so you need to set your business apart by offering superior products and excellent customer service. Whenever possible, ensure you specialize in goods or services that are in high demand. If you cannot beat big businesses by offering better prices, you can only win more clients through reliability and quality service.

Advancing Professional Knowledge and Skills

You should also consider taking a business course to gain more knowledge to improve your business. Fortunately, you can earn a master’s in business by taking online studies. There are a number of online master’s programs designed to suit the needs of young entrepreneurs who wish to succeed in business. Preparing yourself by going to college and learning about your trade is a great help for any entrepreneur.

The secret to successful entrepreneurship lies in the ability to learn, plan, assess progress, and adopt the right strategies. You will indeed perform well if you observe these guiding tips.

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Rachelle WilberMeet the Author: Rachelle Wilber

Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym.

Follow Rachelle here:

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Business Branding: How to Make Your Company Really Stand Out

~by Kara Masterson~


In 2017, the market is positioned in such a way that anyone can easily get the steps on how to build a business. With more and more people creating avenues of entrepreneurship, the competition continues to rise. The competitive nature of business can be enough for many people to decide to fail. However, if you’re strategic in your business branding approach, you can stand out from the crowd and be successful.

business branding

Use these tips to help you climb the ladder of vocational success.

Specific Niche

Because business owners really want to make as much money as possible, many make the mistake of throwing their net with hopes of catching everyone. However, with business, you’ve got to define your target audience and dominate this market with your content. Focus specifically on an extremely targeted niche. There are many smaller niches within one topic and you have a better chance of gaining a devoted following with this route. For example, there are thousands of beauty bloggers on the internet. Instead of focusing on all things regarding beauty, a smart beauty blogger might want to focus in on one niche such as lipstick. There are a million avenues to go with using this one topic and it’s easier to dominate this one topic.

Value Offered

Before anyone is going to pull out their wallet and hand you their hard-earned money, they want to know that you deserve it. In most cases, you’ll have to share the value you offer before they’re convinced. A credit repair firm might want to share the number of years behind their educational background and experience. When it comes to firms like this it is a good idea for them to include things such as reviews and the benefits of their services overall. If people feel as though they’re receiving a ton of value, they’ll be more likely to go with a route that seems like a one-stop shop for their needs.

Customer Service Policies

Customer service is key. The customer needs to always come first. If people feel as though their business isn’t appreciated or valued, they’re less likely to come back. Be intentional about treating your customers well, whether it’s a phone conversation or in-person interaction. Kindness, courteousness and empathy will take any business further than an amazing product will. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have an amazing product offering. Just make sure the customer service component is just as strong so your company will stand out.

Standout Offerings

business brandingDon’t be afraid to offer a really awesome bonus to those who choose to patronize your business. Your standout offerings might come in different forms. If you own a clothing store, you could offer a certain discount for every person you bring into the shop. A car dealership experience could also include champagne and chocolates after the purchase of a car. There should be a nice incentive that’s associated with your company that excites and motivates people to get in line.

Expert Positioning

When you focus on dominating one smaller niche, you have an opportunity to position yourself as an expert on that one subject. Create content that displays your knowledge on the subject matter. On your website, include a blog that’s regularly updated. Consider writing an e-Book to give away for free. Get in front of the camera and begin using YouTube and video marketing to share your expertise with those who need it.

These five components will truly help your company get into the limelight and stand out among the competition. When you narrow your focus and keep it steady, you’ll be able to understand the needs of those in your field and be the answer they’re looking for. When you solve a problem, you become the expert and go-to person moving forward. As a growing business looking to be profitable, you’ll be in the best position to do so.

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Kara MastersonMeet the Author: Kara Masterson

Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She enjoys playing tennis and spending time with her family.

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Ready to Succeed? 4 Steps to Starting Your Own Small Business

~by Hannah Whittenly~


If you don’t like your current job, don’t think you can advance in your field, or are just looking for more control over your professional life, it may be worthwhile to start your own business. However, before you start a company, it is critical that you think your plan through.

small business

What are some items to consider before you enter the marketplace?

1. Do You Have a Business Plan?

The first thing you need to do is create a business plan that addresses what your company does, how it does it and how it can be profitable. While it doesn’t have to be an in-depth document, it should address how the company will make money. For instance, it should detail whether the company will use generated revenue through memberships, subscriptions or sales made by affiliates.

It should also account for competition that already exists or competitors that may enter the market in the future. Furthermore, it should cover what the company will do if a new company or technology disrupts the current dynamic of the market. For instance, what will the business do if demand drops or a competitor engages in a price war to win your market share?

2. Make Sure That You Have Licenses and Credentials

Before you start your company, you may need to get licenses from your town, county or state. You may also need to register with the federal government to get an employer identification and tax number. In addition to getting the proper licenses for your business, it may be necessary to acquire or update professional licenses to increase credibility with customers.

If you plan on using third-party vendors to provide food, do contract work or provide other services, you should make sure that they are properly credentialed. This can easily be done through a vendor credentialing service. The last thing you want is to be liable for work someone else did because they didn’t have insurance or because of a paperwork error.

3. How Will You Market Your Business?

small businessStarting a business is only half the battle when it comes to getting sales. If no one knows that your company exists, you won’t make the money needed to stay in operation. This means that you will need to market either through radio or television advertisements, online ads or by putting posters on telephone poles in your local area.

When creating a marketing plan, you should strive to advertise in places where your target market spends time. If you are targeting younger people, that may mean advertising on social media or putting physical advertisements in schools or in youth centers. If you are targeting older people, you may want to advertise during afternoon television programming or near the assisted living facility.

4. What Is Your Customer Service Plan?

At some point, you will run into a customer who isn’t satisfied or who may need help making a purchasing decision. At first, you might personally handle complaints, concerns or requests. However, as your company grows, you may need to move into a call center or use social media to respond promptly to the needs of your customers.

Neglecting to meet the needs of your patrons is one of the easiest ways for a business to fail. No matter how good your products or services are, no one wants to spend money to be lied to, misled or otherwise treated as if they don’t matter.

Starting a company can be a great way to advance your ideas or gain more control over your professional life. While everyone dreams of being rich and successful, it is important that you cover the basics, like having a business plan and ensuring that your company can legally operate first.

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Hannah WhittenlyMeet the Author: Hannah Whittenly

Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She graduated from the University of California-Sacramento with a degree in Journalism.

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Why You Need to Define Your Purpose and Your Promise

~by Charlene Norman~


Most of us enter self-employment or entrepreneur-land with an idea for a product or service. And whatever it is we decide to deliver has a 98% chance of being a “me-too” version of something already in existence. Someone else near us or close to us is selling pretty much the same thing. (If you do not believe me, just google your product or check the phone book.) Competition is all around, and one of the biggest things we need to understand is the concept of differentiation.

your purpose

The ONLY thing that stands out, that sets you apart, that makes your product or service different, is YOU. Your personality, your amazing ability to save your customer time or money, and/or your unique spin on the products and services. You see, you are not selling JUST your products and services. You are selling you. That means your trustworthiness, your personality, your credibility, your morals, your character, your view of the world and your ethics. Your good days and bad, your good moods and cranky ones, your dreams to make the world a better place, your grooming, your hobbies and in fact, pretty much everything about you. Once you completely understand THAT, everything falls into place. Differentiating yourself from everyone else becomes real easy.

There are two colossal reasons for dealing with differentiation early in your entrepreneur journey. Differentiation helps you ensure you continually focus on standing out (You will call that your Purpose). And differentiation helps you set the direction of what you ultimately deliver (You will call that your Promise).

your purposeLet’s take a simple example. These days, there seems to be a Dental office on nearly every corner. Everyone has a sign. All the signs say pretty much the same thing: “Miss Evelyn Entrepreneur, Family Dentist”. If you were a Family Dentist wanting to establish your own practice, what is so different about you? Now, take a look at this sign: “Family Dental Group. We make smiles every day”. Notice the different promise that is made? The tone is different; the promise is different and accordingly, so is the purpose.

If you are truly in the business of making smiles every day, your whole focus, the way you practice your craft, the way your employees work and interact should be different from other family dentists. Think about your potential customers. Everyone likes a smile. How much easier would it be to entice future customers with the promise of we make smiles every day? How much easier would it be to attract, inspire and manage employees who want to make smiles every day? How much easier would it be to keep your customers and expand your business when you know that what you are passionate about is making smiles daily?

Please do not restrict yourself to thinking exclusively about the service or the product you deliver. Reflect on the concept you are providing to your customers. Think about your Purpose. I like Kellogg’s purpose: “Nourishing families so they can flourish and thrive”. No mention of breakfast cereal! Instead, there is a promise to make a difference. This is your opportunity to do the same thing. Be funny or be serious, be profound, be creative. Just do not limit yourself to only describing the service or product you deliver. You are delivering much more than your service or product. You are promising to make a difference.


your purposeBegin thinking about an easy-to-say, 30-second commercial. Some people refer to this as your Elevator Speech, others your Unique Selling Proposition. I call it a commercial because it is your personal advertisement. It is your response to “What do you do?” If you cannot say it in 30 seconds or less, your potential customers will walk away. If you fall into the category of “well, what I do is complicated to explain, let me show you a video.” Shame on you. You will NEVER ever get a good level of business. If you cannot explain your reason for being in business in 30 seconds, why on earth would anyone want to watch your 15 minute video?

Your 30-second commercial is NOT about you, it’s about what you DO for your customer. So, use equal parts of emotion, visualization and fact. You want to grab the emotions, paint a picture, and roll in some facts. And yes, this is not an easy exercise. It will very likely take you a while to develop. Don’t worry, it’s an iterative process, and you’ll have many opportunities to rethink and refine.

Here’s an excellent exercise to get you started. Write out your business idea in terms of your Purpose and Promise. Now try to distill it into 50 words or less. Then take those 50 words and distill them to 25. Then into ten words or less.

Those final few words are what you are all about. Are what you are offering. Those final few words are either your Purpose driving you forward, your Promise to your customers, or both.

Your Purpose is a Sacred Promise. It guides ALL your decisions.

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Charlene NormanMeet the Author: Charlene Norman

Charlene is a CPA turned marketer turned business cheerleader and coach. Currently completing two of three books about buying 60, selling 10 and saving 30 companies, she now helps business owners who want to go to the next level.

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Making Your Dream a Reality: 5 Keys to a Successful Startup

~by Hannah Whittenly~


Every great business starts with an idea that evolves to become a bunch of great ideas. But what entrepreneurs do from the time they conceive an idea determines whether their entrepreneurial venture can become successful.
Here are five ingredients of startup success.

1. Do Your Homework

successful startup

The first thing you need to do is get to know if your idea if indeed viable. Research online, talk to experts and visit conferences in your industry with a leading objective of wanting to know whether you are the first with this idea. Your next objective should be getting to know if there is another person with a different plan that can address the same problem.

2. Know Your Customers

The sole objective of any entrepreneur should be designing a project that sells. To do this, you need to understand your targeted customers, their current needs, their lifestyle, and their purchasing power. Based on your findings, try to foresee the upcoming demands and design a plan that can better meet those needs.

3. Determine your Resource Requirements

Get to know what exactly you need to get started. If you can build it in your basement using easily available materials and tools, then you are set to go. If you need a co-founder or founding team, you need to start looking at the right ones. If you aim to own 100 percent of your startup, you’ll need deep pockets. You can still consider taking a commercial loan or taking part in crowdfunding programs to secure capital.

You still have to decide the form of business that you want, whether a sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation. Remember some brilliant business ideas fail to see the light of the day simply because of a lack of the right resources and the right partners. Expect to spend a substantial amount of time in this area.

4. Write Your Business Plan

successful startup

There is so much to think about when it comes to your business plan. You need to evaluate where you have come from and where you are now. Doing so will allow you to make a realistic estimate of how far you can go and what goals you need to set to get there. To help you come up with your own goals, try and answer some of the following questions:

  • On average, how much more profit are you making every month this year than you were last year?
  • Are you spending more on your company than you’re earning?
  • If you haven’t reached the break-even point, when do you expect to reach that point?
  • How much in debt are you and your business?
  • What product does your business provide that is the least cost-effective?

Take the time to answer each of these questions honestly. By answering each question and coming up with solutions, you’ll know what area of your business you need to focus on the most to help it be successful. Of course, coming up with the answers to all of these questions may be tough. If at any point, though, you find yourself struggling with the overall financial analysis part of it, don’t hesitate to contact a professional.

5. Be Open Minded

The entirety of this process, including preparing a detailed and practical business plan, is very costly. Unfortunately, this plan is not a casting stone. It is critical to maintaining flexibility in it. Pivoting is always an option for many businesses that want to thrive. So follow new opportunities wherever they may lead you. We can learn this lesson from Tracy Rawle, a CEO of Check City. He rose to become the manager of his father’s two restaurants. Later in the course of their operations, they found it prudent to sell these restaurants and enter the financial services business, which is performing very well today.

Learn the trend that your business is taking. You can do an annual review to get to know your performance and then update your goal sheet for the following year, reprint it and redesign it. Where possible, keep the old goal sheets to enable you to accumulate several successive annual goal sheets for long-term decision making.

The odds of your dream not being fulfilled are indeed fairly high, but you can succeed if you do adequate research, have the right resources, create a comprehensive business plan, and remain open to new ideas. Getting over the startup challenges is a common trouble that many up and coming entrepreneurs face.

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Hannah WhittenlyMeet the Author: Hannah Whittenly

Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She graduated from the University of California-Sacramento with a degree in Journalism.

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Getting Regular is not Just Good for Your Health

~by Haley Lynn Gray~


Getting regular is not just about your health. It is also particularly important for your business. It can be both the easiest thing and the hardest thing to do. It’s not like you can take extra fiber and instantly become regular and make everything consistent. However, if you make being regular and consistent part of your business plan, it does not have to be difficult.

getting regularYou’’ll need to develop processes and procedures to become consistent. Those processes and procedures should encompass every aspect of your business, from marketing and operations to simple things like how and when the phones are answered.  

In fact, with a business, that old saying is very often true: the devil truly is in the details.  

It’s the same with social media. If you don’t post frequently and consistently, you’re not going to register consistent progress. In fact, if you go long enough without posting on your social media pages, groups or accounts, you may inadvertently give the world the message that you’ve gone out of business.

So, what’s a business owner to do?  

1. Decide whether you want to open a particular aspect of your business or not. You may decide that you don’t want a social media presence at all if you’re not going to manage and monitor yours.

2. If you do decide you want a social media presence, then do you want to create the content yourself, or do you want someone else to handle the details of managing your social media?  

3. If you decide to handle the social media yourself, then get yourself a scheduler like Buffer, and designate someone to keep the buffer queues filled on a regular basis. Make sure they are posting appropriate content, and that it’s not taking them a million hours a week to schedule a few posts. Creating social media posts can be a lot of fun and a great distraction. So it can be easy to fall into the trap of spending hours and hours researching the right posts and creating the “perfect” content rather than focusing on the other needs of your business,

4. If you decide to hire it out, talk to a few firms. Do you want custom content, or are you okay with canned content? Do you want links only to your website, or are you okay with curated content which can include links to other websites and social media.  What type of image do you want portrayed? Is the company capable of portraying that image?

As with anything in business, you have to decide what’s important and necessary. Then, develop your plan, implement your processes and be consistent about it.

Have you been using Google as your business consultant?

Are you ready to start working with an expert in business instead?

Schedule a consult with me today.

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Meet the Author: Haley Lynn Gray

Haley Lynn GrayHaley helps female entrepreneurs create a strategy plan for their businesses – so they can make enough money to spend quality time with their family, pay for their children’s dance lessons, pay bills – and not worry about where the next client is coming from.

Haley is a serial entrepreneur and founder of Leadership Girl. She helps other entrepreneurs build their businesses by sharing the benefits of her business education and experience through Business Coaching.

Whether you want to get a new business off the ground or expand an existing business, Haley can assist you.

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Be Your Own Boss: 5 Traits Needed for Small Business Owners

~by Lizzie Weakley~


small business ownersSince the advent of the Internet, there are now more possibilities for innovative entrepreneurs than ever before. With the click of a mouse, customers are now able to shop for the products and services they need, and you can take advantage of worldwide customer base when you take full advantage of the various tools available. Whether you have long been operating your own business or you’re ready to get your feet wet, there are five traits you should analyze in yourself to understand your ability to succeed.

1. Higher Education

When we think of small business owners and entrepreneurs, we often think of someone who happened to have a great idea and made the most of it. However, it takes much more than that, and having a strong background in business is important. That’s why higher education can help you achieve. Best of all, it can be easy to incorporate into your busy schedule as there are many reputable online MBA programs with flexible schedules.

2. Confidence is Key

There’s more competition out there than ever before, and in order to make customers believe in what you have to offer, you must first believe in it yourself. Confidence helps you maintain this perspective of your product or service, and it also helps you take on new challenges in stride.

small business owners3. Ability to Accept Failure

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and you’re destined to make mistakes along the path of business ownership. A successful business owner can’t be afraid to make mistakes.

4. Passion

If you don’t have passion in what you do, it can prove devastating to your business. After all, there will be times when you have to dedicate long periods of time to your business. If your heart isn’t in it, it’s time to modify your business plan to better intrigue you.

5. Money Management

As a business owner, you want to make money. Having good money management skills is crucial to help you more easily achieve your goals and expand in the future.

A Career You Can Count On

With so many opportunities out there for entrepreneurs, it can be easy to get ahead of yourself. As a small business owner, you only have yourself to answer to, and it’s crucial that you’re able to make the best decisions to ensure the long-term health of your operation. By being aware of these five important traits, you can be on your way to developing a career you can count on far into the future.

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Lizzie WeakleyMeet the Author: Lizzie Weakley

Lizzie is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky, Snowball.

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10 Ways You Might Be Sabotaging Your Business

~by Haley Lynn Gray~


It’s normal to want our businesses to grow without having to hustle to get them to start growing. In the beginning it takes a lot more energy to get a business up and running and off the ground than it does to keep it going and growing once it is more established. Sometimes we think we’re doing the right things, but instead, we are inadvertently sabotaging our businesses.

Here are some common mistakes that could be sabotaging your business.  I see these all the time, and I’ve made almost every one of these mistakes myself.

sabotaging your business1. Not being consistent. It’s not easy to show up, and keep showing up, even when you feel invisible, no one is talking to you, and you’re not making the progress you need to be making in your business. You just have to keep showing up consistently.

2. Not building relationships. It almost doesn’t matter what your business is, you simply have to build relationships.

3. Trying to copy someone else. You can and should learn from others, but at the end of the day, your business is yours. You need to make it your own and have your own brand of authenticity. The more your business reflects you and your personality, the better it will do.  

4. Spending money on every bright, new shiny object. You can easily spend your way into a hole and take on way more debt than you intended. There might be a fantastic tool or program that comes along. So you sign up and pay a hefty amount  for it. Then you don’t do the course work, and you find yourself even further behind.  Resist the urge to sign up for new programs or courses or products unless you really need them for your business.

5. Trying to do too much. There really are only 24 hours in a day. It takes time to build your business and to build social media platforms and a following. It has taken me many months to grow my Facebook Group to its current size. It took me a year of consistent, focused effort to add 16,000 Twitter followers. You have to choose the things that you can do in a reasonable number of hours in a day. I have yet to figure out how to bend the space-time continuum or how to add more hours to a day.  

6. Not taking care of yourself. If you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be able to take care of your business or your family. Sleep, food, exercise, and other forms of self care are absolutely mandatory for the health of a business. 

7. Not putting in the time. If you want a business to grow, you have to put in the time. Even if it’s only a few hours a week, you have to dedicate that time to your business.

8. Not doing what you say you’re going to do. This one is the kiss of death. If you don’t do what you say you’re going to do, you are going to develop a lousy reputation.

9. Focusing on too many different things. If you start splitting your attention 23 different ways, it’s going to be hard to build anything. I see people who so many times start  picking up new projects out the wazoo. That is just a recipe for failure, because if you keep losing focus, you’re never going to gain traction.

10. Not having a good support network. Being an entrepreneur can be very hard and very lonely. If you don’t take the time to cultivate a really good support network, you will struggle. There is an African proverb that is particularly relevant here: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

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Meet the Author: Haley Lynn Gray

Haley Lynn GrayHaley helps female entrepreneurs create a strategy plan for their businesses – so they can make enough money to spend quality time with their family, pay for their children’s dance lessons, pay bills – and not worry about where the next client is coming from.

Haley is a serial entrepreneur and founder of Leadership Girl. She helps other entrepreneurs build their businesses by sharing the benefits of her business education and experience through Business Coaching.

Whether you want to get a new business off the ground or expand an existing business, Haley can assist you.

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