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Entrepreneurship

Media Alert: Jack On Small Business Trends Radio

March 7, 2006 | By | No Comments

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Small Business Trends

Forbes Winner Your Business Blogger will be discussing Top 10 Mistakes Small Business Owners Make with Their Employees.

Hit time is Tuesday, March 7th at 1pm EST.

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Anita Campbell

Live.

Visit Small Business Trends and click through the microphone at top right.

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Small

Business

Trends

Radio

The award winning Small Business Trends is hosted by Anita Campbell. Her collaborator is Steve Rucinski at Small Business CEO.

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Small Business CEO, published since May 2004

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Thank you (foot)notes:

Small Business Trends is sponsored by Six Disciplines on www.business.voiceamerica.com. Safe for workplace listening.

24 Feb

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OPT-IN: Management of Other People's Time

February 24, 2006 | By | 2 Comments

Other People’s Money is the often maligned method to fund a venture. But to Get Things Done a leader must not only manage the money — the budget, but get things done through people: management.

What is the First Rule In Management?

The good manager does not manage his time. He does not manage his people.

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Nothing should sit on your deskHe manages Other Peoples’ Time.

And Planning, Organizing, Leading and Controlling will follow.

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Keep the ball rolling.

No paper should rest on your deskThe manager manages other peoples’ time — as well as other company assets — talent and treasure.

I would submit that managers worry less about managing their own time; their own “to do lists” and focus on the subordinate’s time.

So where does OPT-IN start?

The Manager’s Desk.

Piles of paper are decisions not made. You, Gentle Manager get paid only for your experience, wisdom and judgment. Start with your workspace.

Think of your desk as a pyramid with the apex pointing up. Paper does not rest on your desk, nor your boss’s desk.

Paper is never allowed in horizontal file piles.

Whenever a memo or an email attachment comes to you, it will slide off — back to whoever carried it in. It will have your signature on it, an action to be taken (by someone else), filed or destroyed (by someone else). You will not let it rest on your desk — even as you think about.

Do, Delegate or Destroy. Don’t put that memo on the corner of your desk.

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Paper should breeze off your deskEmpty inbox. Not Paper; not electronic.

I would suggest the Biblical reminder that, Today has enough trouble of its own. Do not carry today’s worries — today’s paper — on your work space for tomorrow.

Managers: Do not let the sun set on a piece of paper on your desk. Or an email in your inbox.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

The Management would like to thank Baby-Boo and The Dancer for volunteering for this article.

See Management: 10 Tips.

22 Feb

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3 Comments

Carnival of Entrepreneurship #4 Is Here

February 22, 2006 | By | 3 Comments

The Carnival has some outstanding writing and analysis. World class. From around the world.

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Leah MacleanFrom the continent/country of Australia, Leah Maclean, at Working Solo, presents Golden Rules Part 2 – My List. Leah’s article highlights ground rules in being grounded. I liked her point: Surround yourself with people you love. I would add the Love issue to taking on an assignment or job. Clinton Secretary Jesse Brown said that he would “only work for people who loved” him. Our friend, Leah, from Down Under is on top with this advice.

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Rick SpenceRick Spence, at Canadian Entrepreneur, presents Thinking before speaking. On how to deliver criticism. Rick has advice on advising — having a direct conversation, however uncomfortable.

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David DanielsDavid Daniels, at Global Market Development, presents Checklist to Internationalize a Product. Another Canadian, David, has distilled the steps to take a product international. David correctly, I believe, suggested using local partners, joint ventures whenever possible. I would add that in some countries, such as China — and here I would defer to David’s expertise — that what the Chinese call a ‘wholly foreign-owned enterprise’ might be the better structure than a JV. For a larger company.

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Denise O’BerryDenise O’Berry, at Just For Small Business, presents It Is Not OK To Steal.Denise’s post is an outstanding short summary in defense of intellectual property — entertaining and useful. Bookmark her advice and links on actions to take when a thief steals your stuff.

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Scott AllenScott Allen, at About.com Entrepreneur’s Guide, presents Wednesday Work Tip #1: Redefining Project Completion. My oldest daughter, The Dreamer, came into my office last night and said, “I spent the whole day on this project and I have nothing to show for it.” Oh no, I thought. Welcome to the real world. Scott Allen has a compelling piece on Getting Things Done. Busy is not a receivable. Scott’s piece reminds us in so many words that going to the bank is what is important. Anything else is a hobby. (Don’t show income for three years and the IRS says so.) Anyway, The Dreamer learned Scott’s lesson early. She’s 12. She’s on her way to some day running her own business. And Scott’s blog is helping now.

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Tom McMahonSee Tom McMahon with The Secret Of My Success, where he hit 1,000,000 visitors. Read how he runs the numbers down the funnel. In business, or in life, we do not manage numbers, we manage behaviors. The right behaviors (done by the numbers) will produce desired outcomes (measured against the numbers).

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Thank you (foot)notes:

The Carnival of Entrepreneurship #5 will be hosted by Martin Neumann.

Jesse Brown was my mentor and business partner.

Don Surber has best Thursday Posts.

Maneuver Marketing has more good analysis at AMGEN’s Tour.

Enter the Carnival of Entrepreneurship

February 21, 2006 | By | No Comments

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You are invited to submit a post to the Carnival. This edited Carnival highlights the starting and running of your own business.

How are you doing?

See (the very flexible) Carnival of Entrepreneurship submission guidelines.

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FerdyUse the handy All Purpose Carnival Submission Form. (Clean, simple design, courtesy Conservative Cat.)

The Deadline is 5 pm EST, 22:00 GMT, Wednesday.

Your Business Blogger is honored to host this week. I look forward to reading your articles.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

The Carnival of Entrepreneurship is the brainchild of Scott Allen. The blogosphere owes him.

Carnival of Entrepreneurship #3 is up at Working Solo

February 17, 2006 | By | No Comments

The Carnival Arrives Down Under to Working Solo hosted by Leah Maclean in Sydney, Australia.

And while there be sure to read: Advisory Board Advantages Raise Legal Issues brought to you by BizzBangBuzz – technology & startup blog from strategic business lawyer Anthony Cerminaro.

Very good review for managing a Board of Advisors.

Next week Your Business Blogger will be hosting the Carnival of Entrpreneurship #4. See Scott Allen for details.

Do submit a post or submit an article in my comments section.

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16 Feb

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2 Comments

Who are you and why should I care? The First Rule in Referrals

February 16, 2006 | By | 2 Comments

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Tip O’NeillTip O’Neill was a master politician. And people always wanted favors from the former Speaker of the House. Before a visitor would come a-calling, Tip would tell his staff,

“Don’t take nobody, nobody brought.

Tip found it best to bestow favors only on the advice of a known, trusted third party.

The vector — the connector, would be known to both Tip and known to the supplicant. Introductions made. Wheels greased. The fix in.

The Irish know how to do these things. Tip O’Neill. Ronald Reagan. Chris Matthews.

And Sam Ingersoll.

Last night I was on the phone with Sam. He has a compelling case for not killing kids. With Down Syndrome.

Like his son.

Sam’s site is terrific. The flash demo will make you cry. Emotion sells.

But I didn’t know who Sam was. Or anybody that knew him.

How was my suggestion of any currency — donations, links, recommendations — going to reflect on my reputation? And the credibility of Charmaine and groups with which we may have some influence.

So I suggested to Sam that he name names. An informal Board of Advisors on his site. An easy avenue for due diligence beyond Googling.

People who could vouch for Sam. Who could provide connections to Sam.

What the Chinese call guanxi. Personal connections; social capital.

Sam is now assembling a Board of Advisors.

(Unlike a Board of Directors, Advisors don’t need Directors and Officers insurance — however Advisors’ advice doesn’t have to be taken either.)

Sam is doing the right things — Which is Leadership defined.

Now Sam is doing things right — Which is Management defined.

For his son Gabriel. Making the world a better place.

Visit Gabriel’s Angel Network and donate.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

Also see Pro-Life Blogs.

What if you needed access to a ‘Tip O’Neill’? How would you get the appointment? See Find a Friend. A pro uses intermediaries.

More on Tip O’Neill at the jump.

See Don Surber’s Best Posts.

A DC Birding Blog is hosting the Carnival of the Vanities for 22 Feb.

Read More

Sledding & Shoveling on the Sabbath

February 13, 2006 | By | No Comments

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The Dude, The Dreamer, The Diva

learning the value of a dollar;

12” of snow. Church cancelled. Pre-teens tackle shoveling. Forgive this ‘day in the life’ of posting of Your Business Blogger. But we wanted to document that it’s never too early to teach kids the real value of a labor and money. And the connection. The income they generated for themselves at Uncle Steve and Tom’s office building paid for their pizza.

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Kids from the cul-de-sac,

preparing for combat —

snowball fight

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500 foot sled run

conveniently located

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Thank you (foot)notes:

As Bedside Baptists yesterday, Charmaine and I saw Lynn Swann on ABC’s This Week. He’d have our vote. See the Commonwealth Conservative. And visit the Swann Blog. Conservative bloggers and conservative politicians agree, most of the time. Unlike liberal bloggers and liberal politicos.

11 Feb

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8 Comments

10 Steps of Marketing With No Money — Then Sell Out

February 11, 2006 | By | 8 Comments

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In the late 80’s Your Business Blogger was part of a medical device start-up. With no money.

We were launching new products, with new technology, teaching new surgical techniques, new medicine.

Conventional wisdom dictated hiring a half-dozen advanced-skill nurses to teach around the country. Our Board of Directors said no budget. This was a problem. Our product required extensive inservice training.

With a product that was 100 times the cost of its nearest competitive substitute.

So what’s a thinly capitalized company in trouble to do?

1) Throw a party.

My boss, John Harper, came up with the solution. Conduct training seminars. If we can’t go to the clinician; bring the clinician to us. (John Harper said something about mountains and Mohammed.) We would outsource the training to temping Nurse Consultants. We expanded his idea making the classes into events. Food, flowers, contests, framed certificates, lapel pins. More fun than a TupperWare party. Avon calling. Our mostly female nurses loved it.

…this list

of 10 steps provides a case study.

of brilliance in hindsight after the fact.

And desperation and frustrationbefore the fact…

This list of 10 steps provides a case study. Of brilliance in hindsight after the fact. And desperation and frustration before the fact.

2) Independent Contractors. Identify, recruit, train and motivate per diem consultants. 1099 not W-2. No fixed costs. Easy to hire. Easy to fire. I could make a lot of mistakes. And did.

3) Advertising. Small ad in local trade journals — ad buy was for multiple exposures, not size. Limited ad budget turned out to force creative thinking. I also learned that these thought and opinion leaders also were contributors to text books — and were looking for the latest technology — and wrote new chapters on advanced clinical techniques featuring our products.

4) Talent. Hired thought and opinion leaders who happened to be users. I simply hired my current customers. In setting up seminars the customers conducted the classes. Our instructors were typically ‘nurse of the year’ award winners for their organizations with advanced practice suffixes. These were smart women and everyone knew it. I hired 24 of the best.

5) Invitations. Snail-mailed and faxed personally-addressed invitations to thought and opinion leaders who were not customers. And phone calls. To attend our training seminars. A fax machine was hi-tech at the time. Hi-tech. Hi-touch. A personal invitation always sells.

6) Partners. Linked with local chapters of professional nurse organizations. Who were our key influencers and decision makers. Attended every industry trade show possible — I was less interested in the attendees as in the booth space buyers next to me — who were my channels of distribution.

7) Segment. Smallest, targeted market segment. We thought we would be selling to the 6,000 hospitals across the country. Nope. Not yet. It was the new home health care market. Which also was demanding performance over price. This tiny market segment was less price sensitive than hospitals.

8) Love. Appreciate the customer. Whenever a nurse passed (inserted) one of our catheters, I awarded her the coveted Landmark Nurse lapel pin. And a large framed certificate signed by the bosses. And corsages. Coming to our seminars was like going to the prom. I really loved my nurses. Still do.

9) Heeeeeree’s Johnny. Your Business Bogger acted as the Master of Ceremonies introducing the instructor and guided the logistics. There was no sales pitch. I openly disclosed that the Nurse Consultant was an instructor on the payroll. (At $500 a class — a lot of money at the time. Goodness, a lot of money anytime.) This Full Disclosure had an unanticipated consequence: Every nurse attending wanted to teach part time and would approach me later to get in on the $500 per gig action. Who knew?

10) Visit. Follow-up with a face-to-face visit. So here was my pitch: Buy the frightfully expensive product, I’ll train you, bring you roses, guarantee your happiness and patient outcomes. Or your money back.

So.

The seminars were conducted at a fraction of the cost of hiring a team of clinicians full time. And we were able to bury the expense under the travel & entertainment budget. Which, as it happens, the seminars were. delectare et docere

So what?

I collected baubles for sales numbers.


 

And then what?

The company was sold to Johnson & Johnson. A profitable experience for the investors and stock holders.

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Need to market with no money?

Throw a party.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

I had some terrific bosses at Menlo Care, Inc.: John Harper, Dave Maupin, Chuck Schreiber.

Read more on Menlo Care, Inc. after the jump.

Basil’s Blog has good content and links.

Read More

Carnival of Entrepreneurship – Grand Opening

February 9, 2006 | By | No Comments

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Powerline’s Scott Johnson, Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D. and Paul Mirengoff

at the American Poitical Science Association, fall 2005

credit: Jack Yoest

A weblog reader wrote to Powerline: “Thanks for Changing the World!” When they wrote about errors on the CBS icon 60 Minutes. And bringing to the public news and expertise that had not been seen anywhere else.

Scott Allen is continuing this trend.

Whenever Your Business Blogger talks with journalists from the Main Stream Media, they always complain that there is no editorial oversight in the blogosphere.

The journalists are wrong. As usual.

Note the emergence and growth of Carnivals. They review and select the best offerings. Weblog readers and writers are segmenting down to narrower and narrower niches with greater and greater expertise.

Until they become like the old joke about Ph.D. dissertations: Knowing more and more about less and less.

And this is good. Blog readers and commenters provide some of the sharpest insight and critique around in any medium. Editorial oversight, as it were.

Here is the case study: Scott Allen has started up a start-up for start ups for weblog readers and writers. Free consulting. Every Week.

At The Carnival of Entrepreneurship. Up and running at Scott’s.

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Michael Barone, Scott Johnson, Paul Mirengoff

credit: Jack Yoest

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Thank you (foot)notes:

See more on the expertise of Scott Allen in the extended entry.

See Don Surber’s Thursday Best Blogs.

Read More