If you do business in Toronto or oversee a remote team in the area, you may have considered renting shared office space to lower your operational costs. Here the several forms of shared office space are discussed, from coworking and semi-private office space to team and flexible workspace, including the pros and cons of each option.
Mobile payment tech for expedient transactions was slow to take off, but Near-Field Communication (NFC) like Apple Pay is well on its way for both online and brick-and-mortar businesses. Here the author details how to prepare for “a contactless future” of mobile payments, with the assurance that “setting your business up for smartphone transactions is easier than you might think.”
Drawing on his experience guiding Ph.D. students through the arduous process of earning their degree, the author discusses the difference between delegation and teaching. He says managers who find it difficult to delegate tasks need to stop thinking of passing off responsibilities as delegating, lest they assign employees high-level tasks when they (managers) don’t have the time to do them — and in doing so, set their employees up for failure. Instead, he suggests adopting the mindset of a trainer rather than a manager assigning work. He then discusses how to train employees who show interest in moving into leadership roles in some detail, such as creating a “development plan” and structuring their training with “a series of practice sessions” for more challenging tasks.
Citing research from the small business financing firm Fundera, the author discusses its recent list of the top 10 industries that will “likely be around a decade from now, growing fast, and generating strong profits.” He points out that the industries listed aren’t among the biggest, “just the fastest growing, most lucrative ones,” noting that they have “forecasted growth rates between 118 and 138 percent and a projected 10-year stock growth rate between 56 and 296 percent.” Each of the industries listed specifies the best sub-industries, from technology to transportation.
It’s a marketing paradox that in spite of all the digital avenues to reach prospects, most of them no longer achieve the intended goal. The same goes for old-fashioned cold calling, as “no one answers their phone anymore.” So what can you do to reach potential customers? Here the author discusses six ways, from “lumpy” direct mail to live event hosting and trade exhibitions.
Monster.com recently published a new study that shows 76% of employees indicate they have (or recently had) a boss that is toxic, citing four specific toxic tendencies. Leading the list is “my boss is power-hungry,” while the others are “my boss is a micromanager,” “my boss is never around,” and “my boss is incompetent.” For each toxic behavior, the author discusses how to avoid being guilty of it.
What used to be a very brief list of funding options has expanded dramatically with “the explosion” of alternative lending programs for small business owners. Here the author discusses the six best options available, noting the pro and cons of each, from crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending to invoice factoring and Amazon lending.
Every so often, entrepreneurs feel stuck or simply “meh” about their businesses. To overcome this detachment and bring back the passion for your company, you need to identify the cause and then implement the right solution. Here the author discusses five possible underlying causes and their corresponding solutions, from not feeling challenged to feeling disconnected from your team.
While most small business owners want to stay ahead of the curve with tech, not every new tech gadget is right for your company. It’s critical to do your homework, beta test, and most importantly, check your intentions for wanting to implement the latest tech or idea. For practical purposes, there is technology that has proven to be useful to most companies. These options include cloud computing for storing your data and keeping it safe and mobile device management (MDM) for remote, contract and other employees who use their own mobile devices and computers. Once cost-prohibitive for small and medium-sized businesses, there are more affordable MDM options. Finally, while artificial intelligence (AI) can be useful for finance or real estate businesses in tracking trends and identifying patterns, a point of sale (POS) system may be more appropriate for smaller businesses.
The idea of mentorship has evolved from the traditional business era when career paths were mostly linear, the author states. He contends that now “career development is more of a lattice than a ladder, with employees moving vertically and laterally across organizations…” He suggests looking “beyond the traditional mentor relationship and building a more diverse advisory group from inside and outside your field.” He then discusses the people you want in your advisory board: the creative innovator; the pragmatist; the up and comer (reverse mentoring); the network node, characterized by a “robust and diversified network” that “will open up opportunities, deepen your expertise, and broaden your perspective”; and finally, your future self.