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5 Must-Read Business Books

The self-employment bug is in the air… and it’s highly contagious.

How do we know?

Exhibit 1:

The explosive growth of coworking spaces. These airy, light-filled, lease-free flexible office arrangements are popping up in droves and teeming with entrepreneurs who gather to collaborate and innovate.

Exhibit 2:

A recent Forbes article suggests a record number of Americans scratched the entrepreneurial itch in 2013. Data released by Babson and Baruch Colleges suggests that last year 69{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of new businesses in the U.S. started at home and that 15 to 20{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of our workforce is engaged in running a startup or a more established business.

Exhibit 3:

We can personally attest to a surge in demand from our clients for small business tasks such as website development, logo design, social media scheduling, and PowerPoint creation.

Once we became a trusted resource, clients wanted a one-stop-shop. In addition to handing off those pesky time-consuming tasks that we happen to love (like negotiating with your phone carrier on overage charges, or seeing if “unbundling” your cable is even an option) clients wanted us to sort through their inbox and file them accordingly (how nice would it be to open up Outlook and see a big fat goose egg-zero-emails!).

We were only too happy to oblige. We hustled back to the drawing board, built up the team we needed to sufficiently add to our repertoire, and launched our Premium Service offerings.

Now, we’re proud to be a go-to resource for affordable outsourced business services.

As we send each of you off with a newly launched website or punched up logo, we’re silently applauding you. We’re rooting for you. We want to see you succeed. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of five actionable business books that’ll provide you (or the newly minted entrepreneur that you love) with the advice, insight, and tips they need to persevere.

Afterall, coming up with the idea is the easy part, where entrepreneurs often fall short, is in the execution. You’re the glue that holds it all together. You’re going to need to become a master delegator, persuader, communicator, team builder, and goal setter. Our top 5 picks address each of these issues.

1. The Four Hour Workweek, Timothy Ferriss

Whether you’re in a soul-sucking job, or trapped underneath your own business, Tim Ferriss teaches you how to “escape the 9 to 5, live anywhere, and join the New Rich.” He’ll break you of misconceptions, such as the need to work 40+ hours per week to be successful, and instead advocates newfangled ideas such as a series of “mini retirements.” He’ll show you everything you need to establish a business that runs without you, and get you focused on how to streamline, eliminate distractions, and automate.

2. Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill

One of the best-selling books of all-time and an acknowledged wealth-creating tool, Think and Grow Rich has sold over 70 million copies-and for good reason. Napoleon Hill, a former advisor to President Roosevelt, spent 20 years interviewing …

Personal Financial Debt Crisis Solution – The Golden Rule and Guidelines

Letely we have been inundated with news in the media on the financial debt crisis in Europe and also on perhaps the mother of all debt crises in the USA. We do not need an economics guru to tell us why such crises occur as we all know that debt arises when nations need to borrow to spend more than what they can afford.

Zeroing in on a personal level, each of us will also suffer a similar financial debt crisis if we need to borrow to spend on things we can not afford. So, how do we solve our personal debt crisis? The golden rule is never to get into debt. Easy is not it? If I do not have a debt, I do not have a debt crisis and can dispense with thoughts of having plans for debt consolidation, debt management, debt relief or similar solutions to debt problems. More importantly, if I am in debt, I will be a servant to the lender and that is not a good position to be in. "Easier said than done" will be the obvious retort from many. Neverheless, if wisdom, knowledge and discipline are with us, then our spending needs and cash management will be well-guided and will not land us in debt.

Living within our means is a key principle and is even advocated in mainstream religious teachings. The Christian Bible discourages Christians to be in debt and if in debt, to get out of it as quickly as possible. However, how many of us can keep a golden rule and not break it? Life is not so simple and most of us will incur a measure of debt at some points in time. Whilst the use of debt may be unavoidable, especially when there are so many financial institutions tempting us with "easy" money via credit cards and personal loans, we need to carefully evaluate the purpose of such a use.

So, under what circumstances would it be alright for one to engage in the use of debt? There really are no right answers applicable to each and every individual and every particular situation. Perhaps the following could serve as useful guidelines in the use of debt:
a) Do not buy something because it is on sale without that item is really needed.
b) Acquiring an asset, purchase one that is really needed (like a dwelling place), capable of appreciation in value, and can also easily consumed when needed to do so.
c) If there is really a "sure winner" investment, then ensure that the item can be disposed of at a value greater than its purchase price when required to do so.
d) A caveat to the above will be to ensure that there is always sufficient cash to pay the installments or repayments without damage to cash required for daily essentials.

In summary, this short article is not intended to prescribe solutions to manage and get out of debt but to encourage us to refrain from …

How to Increase Your Chance of Business Loan Approval

Lending companies are willing to extend loans to businesses but they need a guarantee that the loan will be promptly repaid. Established businesses that are doing very well in the market have a great chance of approval. On the contrary, if you own a new business or a start-up business, applying for a loan the first time can prove to be a challenging task.

After the challenge, it does not mean you should not try to apply for a business loan at all. In this article, let us discuss the strategies you can do to increase your chance of getting an approval.

Know the Prerequisites of the Business Loan

Generally, lenders will require the submission of your financial records for the past two years or if you're a new business, since the time you started. You must also prepare proofs that you are running a legitimate company such as permits and licenses.

For new and start-up businesses, a sound business plan will be expected. Your business plan must present a clear explanation of the type of business you are running and must include monthly cash flow projections since you started your operations.

For established businesses, make sure that balance sheets are accurate as any discrepancy in the details may cause an alarm. Business lines of credit you have previously agreed will also be evaluated. Yes, your business credit history will be closely reviewed.

But what if you have yet to build up your corporate credit history? In this case, your personal credit history as the owner of the business will be taken into consideration. How you manage your personal accounts such as loans, mortgage, and credit card debts will show a potential lender your ability to manage a business loan.

This is why it is recommended that you obtain a copy of your personal credit report prior to submitting your loan application. In this way, you can still correct errors or inaccuracies that may be included in your report which could have been pulling down your score.

Needless to say, the same advice is also applicable even to owners of established businesses. Check both your corporate credit and personal credit history to make sure that both your personal and business credit profiles are in good standing.

Preparation Is Vital

Indeed, preparation is very important when applying for a business loan. Financial experts recommend making investments in assets that generate income such as inventory or equipment. You should also avoid major changes in the structure of your business a few months before submitting your loan application. Remember that you need to show a potential lender that your company is in a stable state.

Aside from bigger banks, it is also worth the effort to check out what business loan programs that are available from your local bank. Smaller banks may be more inclined to finance a new business, especially if the owner has been a long time customer with an existing personal account with the company.

Do not submit different applications …

Journals – Seven Ideas to Help You Make Personal Journal Writing More Meaningful

One of the most popular types of journal to keep is a personal one. Essentially you write about your day-to-day life and personal feelings in one of these. Often people end up simply listing everything they did during the day. This can become a bit tedious after a while; lead to one not enjoying the activity and even giving it up all together. So how can you make writing in a personal journal more meaningful? Here are ten ideas:

  1. Focus on feelings – When you write about your daily life events make sure you write about how you feel too. These do not have to be long accounts of your day, just simple entries that allow you to express how you feel about the day's events. By notifying down our feelings about our experiences we often challenge our beliefs about ourselves and in time this leads to further self growth.
  2. Past memories – When you have a day you do not feel is worth writing about, think back and write about a childhood memory or any event in your past that you do feel strongly about. This is especially useful when you do not have a good day. Going back to a happy time and writing about it, recalling how you felt then can help to change your focus and improve your current mood.
  3. Dreams – You might have to keep your journal close to your bedside so you can get these down while you remember the details. Writing down dreams has been useful to people who experience repeating dreams that bother them.
  4. Gratitude – Make a list of everything you are thankful for. This can be from the toaster in your kitchen to your talents. It's a very useful activity to help you focus on everything that is "right" in your life and will help you develop an awareness of how blessed you are.
  5. Acknowledgments – At the end of the day write down three to five things you have achieved for which you want to acknowledge yourself for. An example might be; 'I know myself for tidying my bedroom cupboards today.' It may seem insignificant, but recognizing our achievements no matter how small helps us to validate our personal contribution to life.
  6. Abundance – Attracting more abundance into your life starts with nothing how abundant you already are. Keep a log of abundance you experience on a daily basis. For instance someone may buy you coffee or lunch, give you a lift or you may find 20c lying on the ground. Write down all the evidence of abundance you attract in your life and soon you will realize that you already are abundant.
  7. Goals – Goals are statements about what you want but do not yet have in your life. Your journal is a good place to write these down and reflect on your plans to see if your life is going in the direction you want it to. A good way to start is to write a

Online Banking – Easier Form of Personal Banking

With the advent of technology, internet has given us the easiest option of paying our bills right from the comfort of our phones. Now you no longer have to write checks, visit post offices, etc, as the online banking system takes care of your needs. The regions online banking just gives you the liberty to bank anytime and from anyplace. It is one of the safest forms of securing funds, paying bills online and also transfer of funds

It would seem that not a day passes by without the media once again stirring up public fears and concerns by broadcasting yet another scandal/controversy regarding the perils of the internet and more in particular, the inherent threat that it poses to online businesses, ecommerce and the bank details of consumers.

Every other day the newspapers is filled with awful news about the various scam involving online frauds, which scares the public to no end and it also raises several questions regarding the working of the online-businesses such as ecommerce, trading transactions, etc. But with the regions online banking, you can be assured of a safe and secure way of online transactions. They also offer the mobile banking system, where you will have to select the “Mobile-Banking” tab and you are logged in instantly as you follow the further instructions.

Personal Regions online Pay is one of the most secure and safe electronic form of payments, which is supported by a service, that is able to link more than 500 banks, and almost I million users who are registered can access it. You will find that this form of banking is much faster than the postal-service and it costs quite less, every time you are sending money. You will find that money is credited in your account within a single business working day and likewise debiting.

The incidence of hacking of data is on the rise, where you will find that the personal and financial information of people are stolen, which can be used illegally leading to unauthorized-transactions. The online banking system community has faced a lot of flak for the financial irregularities which keeps on happening due to the internet scams. The need of the hour is to come up with an effective security system, which the regions online banking has introduced called the “Intelligent-Authentication-System”, where you will find that apart from the traditional security- features you would also get extra benefits such as secretly protected password accounts, the number of times the login has been made will be not only monitored but recorded as well. The bank has also come up with an interesting security system, where you will find that as soon as a person is logged idle on to more than 10 minutes, the session automatically expires, whereby again login is required by the user.

The regions online banking makes sure that the personal identity of the person is well protected and they do not believe in giving the personal details of their clients to other companies who …

Coverage of Commercial Auto Insurance

Commercial auto insurance provides security to your owned vehicles or for the vehicles used in business. It can provide insurance coverage bodily injuries and as well as liability coverage. Vehicles which are commonly used for commercial purposes include trucks, car, buses, vans and trailers.

There are different types of commercial auto insurance coverage to choose from and are available depending on your need for coverage.

Business insurance is a security provided for personal travelers and commercial autos which may be involved in any business. Not included in this type of insurance are cargo companies, auto dealers and auto service companies.

The commercial auto insurance can provide primary coverage. This covers legal responsibility and liability, cost of protection and many more. Also, bodily injuries are also covered in commercial auto insurance. Although it gives security and protection from injuries, this is different from the personal auto policy.

Other coverage includes comprehensive and collision coverage which is useful for defined threats should there be a reason liable for any losses. The collision coverage covers repairs, and may restore or compensate the auto.

Under the business coverage, auto dealers are not allowed in its coverage but may be covered under the Garage Coverage. This includes liability and bodily injury coverage and as well as insurance for garage keepers.

By virtue of the Motor Carrier Act, truck owners are sanctioned to confirm and comply with financial requirements because they will be the ones liable for any losses during the duration of the process. Because of this, insurance company provides trucker's coverage to truck business owners.

For more information about this article try to visit Auto Insurance . …

Use Online Audio to Make a More Personal Connection

Audio can be the perfect vehicle for business owners – especially speakers, trainers, consultants, coaches and other infopreneurs – to distribute their message and promote their business. It makes a stronger connection than just written text, and it’s easier to produce than high-quality video.

In the past it was costly and difficult to provide audio online. The Internet was slow, special software was required and the quality was poor. But that’s no longer the case. Now it’s easy to deliver high quality, fast loading audio content on your website.

Why audio?

Here are some benefits of using audio on your Web site and in other ways:

  • Make a personal connection: Audio creates a more personal connection than written text, because the audience hears your voice.
  • Create an experience: You can combine music, voice, sound effects and more into a richer experience than written text.
  • Portable audio devices: People don’t have to listen at their computer, and can do it while multi-tasking.
  • Easy to create: It’s easy to record audio – all you need is a microphone.
  • Teach something: Some of your educational material might translate well to audio.
  • Take control: It’s relatively easy to record, edit and publish audio yourself.
  • Gain a competitive advantage: Despite these many advantages, most businesses are not using online audio effectively.

Why now?

Three things now make online audio feasible and attractive:

  • Better Tools: There are easy tools for you to create high-quality audio clips and publish them on the Internet. You no longer require specialized complex equipment and software.
  • Broadband Internet: The cost of broadband Internet has decreased, and more and more people now have access. In the past the problem with audio was that it took a while to download and streaming audio quality was terrible – a jerky buffered sound. Broadband has now made it possible to have high quality streaming audio and easier download of large audio files.
  • MP3 and embedded players: In the past, there were many different audio formats and players. So it was a bit “hit or miss” as to whether your users could listen to your audio clips. Now this has sorted itself out into two standards: MP3 as the de facto standard for audio files; and HTML5 or Flash as the commonly-used technology for playing audio on Web sites.

What content works best in audio?

There are many types of content you can publish – here are just a few:

  • Articles: Read your newsletter articles out loud.
  • Teleseminars: Record your teleseminars and publish the recordings.
  • Webinars: If your webinars aren’t highly visual, you can publish them as audio as well.
  • CD extracts: If you have already created CD products, convert them into downloadable MP3 files.
  • Interviews: Interview other experts, or ask them to interview you.
  • Book reviews: When you finish reading a book, record a brief book review.
  • Presentations: Record your workshops, seminars and other presentations.
  • Consulting sessions: Record private coaching, mentoring or consulting sessions.
  • Audio books:

How to Sell Business to Business

Selling in today's economic climate is tougher than it has been in decades. Even if you are selling to a business instead of the general public, you have to adjust your thinking, attitude, and technique. Here are six things to help make that sale.

1. Adjust to the customer. Too often, what the customer buys does not exactly fill their need. They have to settle on the closest product that fills their need. It is not a perfect fit. Do not let this happen to your customer. You are asking the customer to buy something they need, so you have to adjust to fill the customers need.

2. Do not forget old school … networking. Volunteer on boards, such as the local zoo or philharmonic. Get to know the power hitters around you. When they need a service or product, they will already have an inside person … you.

3. Remember to be nice to the customer and keep business and personal lives separate. If you see a customer at a non business activity, like a festival, sporting event, or school play, do not bring up business. Remember they have home time to spend with their family and that is what they are doing. Be nice and respect that personal time.

4. Do not be wonderful. Be sincere with the opening congenial comment, but also be aggressive with your sales tactics.

5. Know your customer. If your customer has a contract with a particular company, know when that contract expires. A year before the current contract expires, start working on a presentation to the customer. The customer will want to sign a contract before the current contract expires, and you will have to pitch yourself in time. Give yourself time to learn about the client's needs and wants, develop your plan, and present your plan well before the customer can sign another contract with the current supplier.

6. Know the customer again. Learn things about the customer they do not know. Learn how much time they spend doing something, how they do it, and find ways for the customer to do it faster and more efficient. Inefficiency wastes time, and time is money. Everyone is trying to save money and the customer will remember you if you help them to save money.

People are their own worst critics. You have an advantage if you are not selling to the public, but instead to another business. And like your business, other businesses are there to make money. Ask yourself if you would by yourself, and if not, change your approach. …

Impressive Business Card Styles

It is well established that networking is one of the most serious aspects of business development. Indeed, it is often true that growth depends more on who you know, than many other factors. There is simple logic fueling this argument, and it is mostly an issue of being recognized over the tumult of other individuals who offer similar services. In today's world of business there are countless enterprises that offer very close to the same services. Yes, your company may have its own personal touch, but in the end it is not necessarily all that different from others that offer similar products. The true difference is in you: the representative. Therefore, finding success as a business owner comes to selling yourself as a representative of your company just as much as it comes from offering quality products. This is where business cards enter into the equation.

Using business cards effectively is a great way to introduce both yourself and your company to a prospect. A good business card and conversation with a prospect can bring in new business, be shared from customer to customer and sometimes even reach people who are not interested in your company's services at the time when the card is presented.

Many people, upon receiving a business card will, out of politeness, not just throw it away. Instead it will wind up in a drawer or on a bulletin board. Then, when that individual needs your services, the card is there waiting. These kinds of results are not always as simple to produce as it might sound. Just throwing together a business card and handing it out will not suffice. As with all forms of advertising, the medium must be good, and of a quality that represents your company. Designing an impressive business card is within anyone's grasp.

Perhaps the most important rule of business card design is to make the card simple, and easy to read. The purpose of this form of advertising is to give potential customers a good first impression; they do not need to know everything about your company. Sometimes a name, a phone number and a website can be enough. It is tempting to fill the entire card with information and not waste any of the cardboard's surface area. However, doing so can be a waste of time and money. If a potential customer has to hunt through unessential information to find what he or she wants at first glance, then the card might simply be tossed away. Clutter must be avoided at all costs. That said, a small picture of you, your company logo, or some other identifying mark is essential, and adding a splash of color will draw attention to a design that can otherwise be very simple in nature. If you feel as though you can not possibly refuse from giving a detailed description of your services, then use the back of the card.

It is a bit unconventional to cover the back of the business card with …

What Type of Personal Injury Claim Was Your Accident?

Personal injury cases are legal cases in which one party or group is held accounting for causing harm to another person or group of people. This legal responsibility typically takes the form of the responsible party compensation for medical and other costs, lost wages, and occasionally additional money for damage the hurt party's quality of life. Personal injury cases are very common and many are quite serious.

You can find various types of injury cases in litigation. Injuries can occur practically anywhere: in your own home, at the office, while traveling, or while you're shopping. Wherever an injury takes place, if it was a result of the negligence and carelessness of one party, then the injured party has the legal right to file a personal injury claim through the help of Seattle personal injury lawyers.

Many of the common forms of personal injury cases result from carelessness on our highways and streets. Automobile accidents are the number one source of claims. Think about how many auto accidents happen every day just to get an idea. Even though some accidents are just that – accidents with motor vehicle collisions, others come from neglect. If a driver who crashed into another driver because they were driving too fast, driving while distracted or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then there could be grounds for a personal injury case. In the end, if the offending driver acted in a way that a typical person would not, then they could be held accountable.

Another form of common personal injury cases are those focusing on accidents such as slips, trips and falls. These cases take place when an individual injures them self by slipping or tripping as a result of dangerous conditions at a location. Wet floors, defective floors, uneven ground and so forth are examples of possible causes of these accidental injuries. This is the reason businesses are so adamant about putting out 'Wet Floor' signs during cleaning. If they do not alert customers about the risk to safety, they could be deemed liable for any accidents or injuries which may occur.

Work is yet another place where personal injury cases can begin. The majority of companies and organizations take care to ensure that their staff is protected from hazards at the workplace. Some, however, still allow their equipment to go un-inspected or let their employees operate in unsafe circumstances. If this sort of negligence results in an offense, then the business can and should be held liable for causing the injuries. These cases are most common in industries like construction, where there's a higher potential for accidents and mishaps.

Another cause of injury claims are faulty and defective goods. Some businesses produce items that they know might cause harm to the people using them, but still permit them to be sold. If a Seattle injury lawyer can show that a company had prior knowledge of a dangerous product defect, then they can be held liable for damages when pursued by the …