starting
story of microaid

MicroAid: Helping Entrepreneurs Rise Out of Poverty

by Angelique O'Rourke

For those living in extreme poverty in developing nations, even the most entrepreneurial people face innate challenges. While in recent years, the rise of microloans and microcredit programs have certainly done some good, there are new ideas cropping up about ways to create sustainable change using education, business planning skills, and technology. We spoke with... Read more »

starting
What is a benefit corporation?

What Is a Benefit Corporation?

by Angelique O'Rourke

I recently wrote a post on social enterprise, discussing what it entails, and what some of the legal structure options are for a business when the focus is on a social mission. The benefit corporation option is one such legal structure. It’s a fairly new structure, with the first one of its kind coming into existence... Read more »

managing
positive workplace environment

Creating a Positive Work Environment

by Scott Huntington

When it comes to managing your employees, one of the most important things you can do for them involves setting the right tone at work.  We’ve all heard some of the horror stories about terrible jobs or bad managers, and the one thing each of these stories has in common was the negative workplace environment.... Read more »

planning
Should you join an industry association?

Finding an Industry Association for Your Small Business

by Arlene Soto

Industry associations, also known as trade groups or business associations, are organizations founded and usually funded by businesses in that specific business or industry. Thousands of industry trade groups are in existence worldwide, and every industry has at least one trade group. Industry associations often provide access to certification, education, information, trends, political lobbying, group... Read more »

planning
coworking space - creative ways to save money

5 Creative Ways to Save Your Business Money

by Lisa Furgison

As a business owner, you’re always looking for ways to cut costs and raise your profit margin. There are some obvious ways to save money. You’ve heard them all before—suggestions like shopping around for the best prices on everything from office furniture to cell phone contracts, barter for services with clients, and keep hiring to... Read more »

managing
Are you micromanaging your employees? It might be time to cut the strings.

3 Reasons Why Micromanagement is a Macro Hindrance

by Ashley Coolman

“I’m just trying to help!” “I want to ensure our success!” If these lines sound familiar, you should know that they’re classic micromanagement warning signs. And, unfortunately for the well-intentioned micromanager, the results are rarely positive. For his book “My Way or the Highway,” Harry Chambers organized a interesting study about micromanagement. According to the survey... Read more »

managing
gatorade

Gatorade and the Kings of Cool

by Ryder Cochrane

When you are developing a marketing plan, it’s important to focus on the aspect of your product that you mean to be the selling point. You have to have that thing that makes you stand out from the pack, and that’s what you focus on. You’re the cheapest. You’re local. You’ve got the highest quality product.... Read more »

planning
Isaiah Thomas led the Detroit Pistons to back-to-back NBA championships. Chris Webber and The Fab Five narrowly missed NCAA championships.

Bad Boys and the Fab Five: Business Lessons from Basketball History

by Jonathan Michael

In 2009, to commemorate their 30th anniversary, ESPN released a new sports documentary series called “30 for 30.” The series included 30 full-length documentary features that highlighted sports history’s most memorable moments and personalities. The series was so popular that ESPN decided to release a second volume of 30 more documentaries, produce 30 new digital... Read more »

planning
Orange is the New Black Season 2 Cast Photo

How to Run a Business in Prison (Orange is the New Black, Season 2)—Minor Spoilers

by Jonathan Michael

The Netflix original series, Orange is the New Black, takes a gritty, poignant, and hilarious look at life inside a women’s federal prison. The show premiered in 2013 to critical acclaim, and in June 2014 Netflix released all 13 episodes of its second season. The show recently won the Critics’ Choice Award for Best Comedy... Read more »

managing
mobile security

The Future of Mobile Security for Small Business

by Brittany Klontz

For most businesses, smartphones and tablets have already become regular pieces of office furniture, chirping and buzzing beside an employee’s computer. Under a workplace protocol called BYOD, or “Bring Your Own Device,” employees tote their own tech with them into the office, using them to complete their tasks. BYOD is already quite common. The Forrester... Read more »

planning

4 Things Game of Thrones Can Teach You About Business [SPOILER ALERT]

by Lisa Furgison

  The hit HBO show “Game of Thrones,” which has fans enthralled over the fight for the Iron Throne, averages 14.2 million viewers per episode, and has been lauded as the network’s most popular show ever. With a cast of 250+ actors, “Game of Thrones” costs about $50-60 million to produce each season, and is now... Read more »

managing
Hiring for personality over experience—case in point: Dwight Schrute.

Hiring for Personality Instead of Experience

by Scott Huntington

Personality and interpersonal skills are not typically evaluated until the interview stage, if they're taken into consideration at all. By then, the applicants whose personalities are the best fits for the position may already have been weeded out. Read more »

starting
shutterstock_183400235

How Getting My MBA Helped Me Thrive as an Entrepreneur

by Allison Berliner

There is a tendency in the start-up community to be skeptical towards MBAs. In an industry that lauds performance metrics to constantly track progress, there’s something fluffy about a professional degree that is not a prerequisite for anything. Unlike medical school or law school, you don’t need an MBA to go into business. Since much... Read more »

managing
Gideon Kimbrell

13 Creative Customer Support Tactics That Really Work

by Scott Gerber

When it comes to customer support, doing the little things can go a long way. But how do you keep it simple and cast a rippling effect? Read more »

starting
steve-jobs-steve-wozniak

Why Introverts Make Great Entrepreneurs—Plus 5 Tips for the Entrepreneurial Introvert

by Brian Eckert

What do Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg all have in common? In addition to being some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world, all three are introverts. This may come as a surprise. After all, aren’t introverted people shy, quiet, and even anti-social? Most people wouldn’t assume introverts are the type to... Read more »

planning
How to Create Happy, Productive Employees

#TrackThis Episode 4: How Do You Measure Happiness?

by Sabrina Parsons

Welcome to episode four of #TrackThis, my recurring webinar series with Matt Rissell, CEO of TSheets! This episode’s topic is a big deal for my company, and that’s why I wanted to share it with you. Happy employees are more productive, and they’ll make your company better. Money spent on employee happiness is money well... Read more »

managing

Ideas Make or Break Your Business

by Caroline Cummings

I don’t know about you, but I come up with a new idea every day. However, ideas without execution are merely thoughts in one’s own head. The writer Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best: “Ideas must work through the brains and arms of men, or they are no better than dreams.” Ideas are key to... Read more »

managing

How to Inspire Your Employees

by Caroline Cummings

Have you ever heard the following statement?: “If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” It’s a quotation from the French writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, and Adam Bryant—The New York Times... Read more »

managing

Culture Eats Strategy For Breakfast

by Caroline Cummings

The New York Times' columnist Adam Bryant sums it up in his book by saying that “culture is the X factor that will determine who wins in the long run.” Read more »

managing

It’s Easier to Teach an Innovator to be a CEO…

by Tim Berry

Who do you want running a startup: an innovator or a CEO? Read more »