managing
happyshopper

Use the Power of Positivity to Gain the Competitive Advantage

by Matt Rissell

The founding fathers were onto something. The pursuit of happiness matters more than ever, especially in business. To boost the productivity and performance of every employee (even the CEO) from the inside out—and the overall perception of a company by customers—get happy. In “The Happiness Advantage”, author Shawn Achor outlines a decade’s worth of research on... Read more »

managing
facetoavoid

6 Ways to Maintain an Impressive Online Reputation

by Jeremy Gin

Warren Buffett famously said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.” For this reason and many more, there is often no worse feeling for an entrepreneur than to see the brand he or she spent years building tarnished by a bad review online. But take heart! There are... Read more »

managing
heartcup

Should You Serve Fair Trade Coffee?

by Angelique O'Rourke

For many consumers and small business owners in the U.S. and western Europe, the knowledge that the people producing their coffee were usually struggling from poverty, in rural areas, and vulnerable to exploitative practices by powerful middlemen who gave them prices far below market value, is disturbing. People in the western world wondered, is there... Read more »

managing
Creativity In book Civer

The Pixar-inspired Guide to Managing a Creative Company

by Candice Landau

Unless otherwise stated, all quotations can be attributed to Ed Catmull.  Creativity needs to be protected. This is never more true than in the workplace, in which a creative culture is something precious and in danger of being stamped out if not nurtured. In his book, “Creativity, Inc.,” Ed Catmull shares his experience as a manager of... Read more »

managing
gender equality

#NotEqualYet: The Infographic

by Sabrina Parsons

We’ve come a long way toward gender equality, in the workplace and elsewhere, but every day, there are still women feeling the negative effects of sexism in their lives. One of the arenas where change has been slow and large disparities still exist is the workplace. Especially for working moms in the United States, navigating... Read more »

managing
#notequalyet

#NotEqualYet: The Reality of Gender at Work

by Sabrina Parsons

It’s easy to think we’ve achieved gender equality. Women, so iconic we know them by first name and initials—Oprah, Hillary, RBG—have shattered much of the glass ceiling. The floor is coated with shards, but there is still work to be done. Equality is not a world in which Hillary Clinton’s pantsuits receive more attention than... Read more »

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 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. To learn more, we... 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 »