Many businesses lose money yearly because they don't think creatively about the future. They run their businesses doing what they think they should: dealing with customers, dealing with problems, ordering for their business, and paying their expenses. They act like their business is a job. They are surviving and that's it. They are not looking at the big picture. They need to use their business as a stepping stone to success. Picturing themselves as a successful business person, and setting up a plan to succeed.
Many of the businesses today are started by people who have been downsized or laid off. They are used to showing up for a job and getting paid, and this is how they are operating their business.
The first thing you must do is to find out what you are really good at. Many people want to know, "How can I make more money?" Unfortunately too many business people never ask themselves, "What am I good at?" They need to do so, and then ask it again every time they want to do something new. This is one of the biggest reasons businesses fail. The owners did not focus on what they were good at and did best. This does not mean you can't try something different. What it does mean that it is best to go with the skills and experience you already have.
The second thing you need to do is take an objective look at yourself. Take a piece of paper and write down what you can and can't do. Picture yourself hiring you. Would you hire yourself? Would you be impressed? What do you know best? What are your hobbies? Can you turn that hobby into a business? Remember you work best at something you enjoy.
I was an exceptional secretary, so I started a word processing business. I loved typing and taking dictation by telephone, writing up letters, proposals and setting up identity packages. However, I hated having to drive around town to pick up and deliver projects, and cold calling for business. So after losing money, I shut down the business. A couple of years later I started another business where I was the assistant to businesses, but worked from my home. I got to do all the secretarial aspects, but out of a home office. All I had to do was send flyers and mailers to independent contractors. I also worked with answering services for referrals and gave them business, plus a cut of my fee.
What this means is you need to discover what your likes and dislikes are. People like to work at things they do well. They enjoy themselves more. A test for you is to think back over the last couple of days. Then make a list of the things you enjoyed doing. Think about when you were the happiest and what you were doing.
The third thing you need to think about and be able to recognize is: What your competitive edge is. After you do the above test and find out what your strengths are, you will find that some of these strengths give you an advantage over your competition. Do your particular strengths and abilities help you provide exceptional customer service? Can you do something or produce something that others can't?
If you already have an edge over others, put it to use. Make your customers aware of your unique qualities. The way to accomplish this is to be sure any advertising or promotional campaign you employ highlights your unique selling points.
The fourth thing you need to do is to plan ahead. While your business concept or product might be unique now, as we know people love to copy what is successful. So you need to plan for the long run. You need to be aware of what your competition is doing and keep your customers coming back.
The fifth thing is that just because there are things you don't like about your business, doesn't mean you give up. Yes, there are going to be certain things you like better than others. Every business person feels this way. However, if you don't like anything about what you are doing, then you might want to start a new business. Be sure before you do so, you give yourself the above test.
The sixth thing is sometimes you just need to make some changes in your business. See if there are certain things you can cut out of your business, a product or service, which you might not enjoy and it is not a profit center for you. Then drop it, and concentrate on those things that are generating a profit.
Maybe you need to make changes to make your job easier, such as buying new software, or a new computer system. Maybe hiring someone on a part time basis could take some of the workload off your shoulders, and allow you to concentrate on other business matters.
And last but not least is to be sure you take what you've learned about yourself, and set up a plan for your business for the future. Don't forget to write down what you're good at and ways that you can apply your skills to making money. You can take this information about your skills and put it in your promotional materials. Be sure you always have a notebook (or a voice recorder) with you to joint down notes to yourself, new business ideas to try. You want to be sure when you do write these things down that you also put a date next to them to implement that idea or strategy. This will give you goals to work for. Be sure to put these goals in a prominent place in your office. I put my goals on index cards and then put the index cards on my desk, on my calendar, and on my bulletin board. By having your goals visible to you, it will help you to stay on track. And, that is what it is all about - keeping your business growing and prospering.
Copyright 2003 DeFiore Enterprises
Interested in having your own successful, home based creative real estate investing business? Chuck and Sue have been helping folks start successful home based businesses for over 19 years, and we can help you too! To see how, visit www.homebusinesssolutions.com/">http://www.homebusinesssolutions.com for the latest FREE tips and tricks, educational products and coaching in creative real estate investing and home based businesses. No time to visit the site? Subscribe to our "how to" Home Business Solutions Digest, it's like having your own personal coach: mailto:subscribeHBS@homebusinesssolutions.com
Soldiersâ presence underlines Moscowâs role as power broker after evacuation of US personnel
Russian units have begun patrolling territory separating Turkish-backed Syrian rebels from the Syrian army around the flashpoint town of Manbij in north-east Syria, in a clear sign that Moscow has become the de facto power broker in the region after the evacuation of US troops.
Oleg Blokhin, a Russian journalist usually attached to mercenaries in Syria, posted a video on social media on Tuesday from a deserted US military base in the village of al-Saadiya, near Manbij.
Six adults removed from house and man, 58, arrested
A group described by local media as a man and his adult children have been found after spending several years living in the cellar of remote farmhouse in the north-eastern Dutch province of Drenthe âwaiting for the end of timeâ.
The group of six were discovered after the oldest son, 25, visited a local bar, the Kastelein cafe. On the first occasion, 10 days ago, he âordered and drank five beers on his ownâ, the owner, Chris Westerbeek, told broadcaster RTV Drenthe. When the man reappeared last Sunday, he âlooked confusedâ, Westerbeek said. âHe was unkempt, with long tangled hair. We got talking. He said he had run away and needed help, and that he had never been to school. Then we called the police.â
Charlotte Charles says president dropped âbombshellâ as grieving parents visited White House
British parents grieving their teenage son have told how, during a visit to the White House on Tuesday, Donald Trump dropped the âbombshellâ that the woman who allegedly killed him in a road crash was waiting for them in an adjoining room.
Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn turned down the rushed offer to meet Anne Sacoolas, who is married to a US diplomat, describing it as ânot appropriateâ with no mediators or therapists present.
Police and protesters clash in city centre, as well as other Catalonia towns
Clashes between protesters and police erupted in Barcelona late on Tuesday after peaceful demonstrations over the jailing of nine Catalan separatist leaders descended into running battles.
Protesters lit fires and erected makeshift barricades in the centre of the city before the crowd was dispersed by baton charges by Spanish and Catalan police, as far as Passeig de GrĂ cia, the elegant boulevard that is home to many of the cityâs most exclusive shops and hotels.
NBA star said freedom of speech can carry âa lot of negativeâ
Relationship between NBA and China is under strain
Protestors in Hong Kong have burned LeBron James jerseys after the NBA star said that freedom of speech can lead to âa lot of negativeâ.
James made his comments after the fallout between the NBA and China over the anti-government protests in Hong Kong. The lucrative relationship between the league and China has been damaged since the Houston Rockets general manager, Daryl Morey, tweeted in support of the protestors earlier this month. Morey subsequently deleted the tweet but China has threatened to cut ties with the NBA, and some Chinese companies have backed out of broadcasts and sponsorship deals.
Farrowâs book Catch and Kill describes Harvey Weinsteinâs efforts to silence alleged victims and put Farrow himself off the story
The combination of rage, threats, professional promises and vulnerability that Harvey Weinstein used to secure the silence of women he allegedly sexually attacked is described in a newly disclosed interview between one of his accusers and Ronan Farrow, the journalist who exposed the Hollywood mogul.
In his new book Catch and Kill chronicling his investigation into Weinstein, Farrow relates for the first time details of his conversation with a longtime former employee of the movie producer, Alexandra Canosa.
Long-time foes North and South Korea played a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday, their first football match in the North in 30 years, but no fans were allowed in the stands and Pyongyang refused to broadcast the game live. There were also no goals.
The last time the two sides met in a World Cup qualifier was in Seoul 10 years ago, when the North lost 1-0 before accusing South Korea of poisoning their playersâ food ahead of the match.
Green growth and âhedonistic sustainabilityâ have helped keep the public on board as the Danish capital seeks to reach its goal by 2025 â and so far itâs all going according to plan
âWe call it hedonistic sustainability,â says Jacob Simonsen of the decision to put an artificial ski slope on the roof of the ÂŁ485m Amager Resource Centre (Arc), Copenhagenâs cutting-edge new waste-to-energy power plant. âItâs not just good for the environment, itâs good for life.â
Skiing is just one of the activities that Simonsen, Arcâs chief executive, and Bjarke Ingels, its lead architect, hope will enhance the latest jewel in Copenhagenâs sustainability crown. The incinerator building also incorporates hiking and running trails, a street fitness gym and the worldâs highest outdoor climbing wall, an 85-metre ânatural mountainâ complete with overhangs that rises the full height of the main structure.
âIf cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be doneâ said LA mayor Eric Garcetti
US mayors are seeking to go over President Trumpâs head and negotiate directly at next monthâs UN climate change conference in Santiago, they said as they met in Copenhagen for the C40 World Mayors Summit.
Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, who rallied US mayors to commit to the Paris climate agreement after Trump announced his intention to withdraw the country in 2017, said he would ask the UN secretary general, AntĂłnio Guterres, on Thursday to give American cities a new role in UN climate talks.
âIâm going to bring it up with the UN secretary general,â Garcetti said. âIf cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be done. Hopefully, we can do it in concert with our national governments, but [we can do it] even where there is conflict.â
Garcetti, who was announced on Wednesday as the next chair of the C40 group of global cities, said he would use his position to seek âa more formal role in the deliberationsâ at the conference.
âThe United Nations works directly with cities all the time ... so they shouldnât feel feel scared about jumping down to that local level,â he said.
She has barely ever been in a car, and never eaten meat or flown. Now 31, she lives on the 15th floor of a city centre tower from where she can just see the ocean 500 yards away on one side and the suburbs and informal settlements sprawling as far as the eye can see on the other.
Life is OK in this megacity. She earns the exact median income and is as green as she feels she can be: she has no children yet, her carbon footprint is negligible, and her apartment, built in the early 2000s, has been retrofitted for climate change with deep insulation, its own solar air-con and heating systems.
As developers aim to turn Franceâs busiest train station into a gargantuan airport-style mall, Parisians fear for the local neighbourhood â and the stationâs soul
âWhen you tell people in Paris you live near the Gare du Nord, they usually grimace,â sighed Sarah, a French academic in her 50s who has lived on a narrow, traffic-choked street next to Europeâs busiest station for 30 years.
âArchitecturally, the station building is superb. But neighbourhoods around stations are never easy, wherever they are in the world.â
Ambush the latest in string of brazen attacks by Mexicoâs drug cartels, as President Amlo defends strategy to halt the violence
With an AR-15 assault rifle in his hand and six spare magazines across his chest, the burly policemen looked nothing if not intimidating as he prepared to attend a memorial service for 13 fellow officers who were killed in an ambush in western Mexico on Monday.
Business and city leaders warn of economic damage of cancellation and call for 2012 Olympics-style authority
A review of HS2 by northern business and city leaders has called for control of construction of the high-speed railway to be devolved to the north and Midlands â and warned that its possible cancellation would leave no viable alternatives for transforming their economies.
The Northern Powerhouse Independent Review (NPIR), established to inform or pre-empt the governmentâs own review of HS2, recommended a new body, HS2 North, be established to integrate HS2 with proposed Northern Powerhouse Rail links.
Charges laid in regards to racist chanting during England win
Prime Minister describes events in Sofia as âstain on footballâ
Boris Johnson has joined demands by anti-racism campaigners for Uefa to take strong action after the racist chanting that marred Englandâs Euro 2020 qualifier against Bulgaria on Monday night.
European footballâs governing body has opened disciplinary proceedings against the Bulgarian Football Union (BFU) for racist behaviour of its supporters after the incidents at the Vasil Levski Stadium in Sofia, in which some home fans made monkey noises at Tyrone Mings, Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford in the 6-0 victory for Gareth Southgateâs side.
The Republican senator Lindsey Graham and Democrat Chris van Hollen are expected to launch a bipartisan bill on Tuesday aimed at forcing the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip ErdoÄan, to halt his military campaign in north-eastern Turkey, amid reports of widespread human rights abuses and the release of Isis militants who had been detained there.
Labor says home affairs ministerâs veto shows claims before election were false; Frydenberg responds to IMF growth forecast; and Malcolm Turnbull defends Snowy 2.0 after report savages project. All the dayâs events, live
Question: You spent $2.5m on the election campaign this year. GetUp targeted six Coalition Liberal MPs. Peter Dutton, Greg Hunt, Tony Abbott, Kevin Andrews and Christian Porter. Tony Abbott lost his seat, and many people say that GetUp had little influence on that because he was responsible for his own unpopularity. Do you bear responsibility, then, for the fact that your millions didnât unseat any of the other MPs and, in fact, thereâs an argument that people have put that GetUpâs presence, for example, in Dixon, had the opposite effect. It boosted Peter Duttonâs popularity?
Firstly, thatâs not right. Peter Dutton faced a much smaller swing than other parts of Queensland.
And whilst itâs true to say, itâs undoubtedly a fact, that weâre sitting here today having not achieved our objectives in the election campaign, and weâve been reflecting on that and how we can work differently going forward, Iâm proud of the campaign that we ran together.
Unicef report finds poorest children at greatest risk, while price of healthy food in rich nations drives food poverty
At least one in three children under five are either undernourished or overweight, and one in two lack essential vitamins and nutrients, the UN childrenâs agency has warned.
The Unicef report laid bare the alarming rate at which poor diets and a âfailingâ food system are damaging children, saying that âmillions are eating too little of what they need and millions are eating too much of what they donât need: poor diets are now the main risk factor for the global burden of diseaseâ.
A third of workers in study experienced dangerously high body temperatures, despite working ban during hottest periods
Migrant labourers working outdoors in Qatar face âhighâ or âextremeâ risk of heat stress for more than half the working day during the four hottest months of the year, according to a UN report.
The findings come just weeks after the Guardian revealed that hundreds of workers may be dying due to exposure to Qatarâs intense summer heat.
Global hunger index finds countries affected by drought and conflict in sub-Saharan Africa have seen biggest increases in undernourished people
The climate crisis is driving alarming levels of hunger in the world, undermining food security in the worldâs most vulnerable regions, according to this yearâs global hunger index.
The annual report, a rankingof 117 countries measuring hunger rates and trends, shows progress since 2000 but warns that the world still has a long way to go to reach the zero hunger target agreed by world leaders by 2030.
Children taken to safety in Raqqa after hundreds of people fled camp holding Islamic State affiliates in northern Syria
Three orphans believed to be British citizens have been evacuated from an area in northern Syria that was the focus of recent attacks by Turkish troops and their allies.
The Guardian understands that the three children, Amira, 10, her sister, Hiba, eight, and their brother, Hamza, were evacuated from a camp for people associated with Islamic State in Ain Issa on Sunday. They were part of a group of 24 children taken to safety by the UN refugee organisation.
Exclusive: Upmarket brand, which has just launched UN partnership, opens investigation as female labourers in Bangladesh factory say they suffer regular abuse
Lululemon, an athleisure brand whose ÂŁ88 leggings are worn by celebrities and Instagram influencers, are sourcing clothing from a factory where Bangladeshi female factory workers claim they are beaten and physically assaulted.
The Canadian brand recently launched a partnership with the United Nations to reduce stress levels and promote the mental health of aid workers.
Twelve Democratic 2020 presidential candidates will share the stage in the perpetual swing state on Tuesday
The Democratic 2020 presidential candidates will gather once again on Tuesday night to face off in their fourth debate, this time in the perpetual swing state of Ohio.
Twelve of the candidates have qualified to participate, and they will all share one stage â marking the most crowded debate stage of this election cycle so far. But the dynamics of the race have changed since the candidates last met in September, and some of the contenders face the prospect of this being their last debate.
UK lawyers say more women are coming forward, but are police and prosecutors ready?
The clearest impact of the #MeToo movement on the British justice system has been a sharp rise in the number of complaints made to police of rape and sexual assault over the past two years.
That surge, however, has coincided with a chaotic response by police and prosecutors, who have been engulfed in problems over disclosure and allegations they have refined their approach to the crime in order to improve conviction rates, although this has been denied by the Crown Prosecution Service.
Analysts say tactic of cooperation against nationalist parties appears to be working
A narrower-than-expected win for Polandâs ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) and a serious setback for Hungaryâs governing Fidesz show eastern Europeâs illiberal nationalist parties are not entirely invincible, analysts and commentators have said.
âIt looks like this may be a small step in the right direction â but itâs clear the opposition still has an awful lot of work to do,â said Agata GostyĹska-Jakubowska, a senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform.
A close ally is abandoned, and Isis is regrouping. The speed of the unravelling is breathtaking
In the week since Donald Trumpâs fateful phone conversation with Recep Tayyip ErdoÄan, the US has entirely abandoned the Kurds, its most effective allies in the Middle East, and with them a Syria strategy that was five years in the making.
The Islamic State flag has been raised once more and the last vestige of US credibility as a reliable partner lies crushed under Turkish tank tracks. It has arguably been the worst seven days for US foreign policy since the invasion of Iraq.
Residents of Drenthe, a province in the north-east Netherlands, reacted to the discovery of a group of people believed to have spent years living in the cellar of a remote farmhouse 'waiting for the end of time'.
Six adults were removed and being taken care of, police confirmed, while a 58-year-old-man who was renting the farmhouse was arrested after refusing to cooperate with their inquiry.
Native American tribes from up and down the west coast came together in San Francisco Bay to celebrate Indigenous Peoplesâ Day on 14 October. Starting at dawn people paddled traditional tribal canoes around Alcatraz Island â the famous former prison site which was occupied by Native Americans from 1969-71. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the historic act of resistance that launched the modern era of indigenous rights
Protesters took to the streets of Barcelona and other parts of Spain after the supreme court jailed nine Catalan separatist leaders for sedition over their role in a failed independence bid in 2017. Three main streets in Barcelona were blocked, as was train and metro access to Barcelona airport
Japanâs Typhoon Hagibis made landfall south of Tokyo on Saturday evening with heavy rain, which flooded the city and surrounding areas. The death toll has reached 36 and many people are still missing. Emergency workers swung into action, with helicopters plucking people from flooded buildings and police swimming through waters looking for missing people
Rescue efforts have begun in Japan following Typhoon Hagibis, which flooded Tokyo and surrounding areas and left at least 25 dead and 15 missing.
Hagibis, one of the strongest storms to hit Japan in decades, made landfall south of Tokyo on Saturday evening and moved northward. It brought torrential rain and ferocious winds, causing widespread damage
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