Monthly Archives: July 2013

Do You Have A Business Plan?

Every business needs a business plan, and even more so if you are bus planhome-based business of one.   You might think that just because “you are the company” and you know what the focus of your business should be, that would be enough.

Taking the time to think critically about your marketing, branding, operations, competition and the oh-so serious reality of financing is crucial to your success.  It’s been almost a year since I opened the “virtual” doors of my business, and like most people starting a small business, did not thoroughly do my own due diligence.   Would I change my decision?  No.  However, I have now have a more real picture of what my future can look like based on experience and having a wonderful support network. 

While completing your business plan, you need to take a long hard look at the realities of all that must go into operating a business:

  • Cultivating clients – are you a decent sales person?  are you good at networking?  can you stand up and sing your own praises?
  • Keeping the books – are you detailed oriented?  will you invest in QuickBooks or some other accounting software to track your expenses and income?  will you take credit cards – do you know the cost using that service?
  • Operations – have you clearly thought out the processes involved in your businesses’ operations (from order in through to billing and collections, if necessary)?
  • Marketing – how will you market your business?  do you have the technical abilities to keep up with social media, or are you prepared to pay for print advertising?  will it all be word of mouth – are you networking on a weekly basis?
  • Competition – do you seriously know your competition, beside Googling to see how many are out there?  how are you different from them?  is your competition successful – if so, why?
  • Financing – have you created a cash flow forecast to know when/if you will need to supplement your income?  can you pay for the necessary licenses, permits, legal and tax services?  will you want to attend trade shows and/or hand our marketing items?  will you need certain office equipment or software?  will you have to purchase inventory?

Even potential turnkey business owners need to take all these things into consideration.

Creating amountain climb2 business plan will help you understand the potential of your business, with all its opportunities and challenges, and will also allow you to be able to communicate that vision to others.   As your business moves along, you need to keep reviewing and updating your plan, and updating your goals and milestones.   Create goals for 6 months, 1 year, and 3 years as well, to make sure that you are on the path you envisioned and review these goals on a monthly basis.   If your path is blocked, create a new one.  The point is know where you are going, and to be able to see the results of what you have created.  It’s important to know the mountain you’re climbing, but is just as important to be encouraged by seeing how far you’ve climbed.  Success spurs success!

While it’s true that there’s nothing better than being your own boss, you need to keep in mind that there does need to be a boss who’s responsible for the direction and vision of your business.

There are many Business Plan templates on the internet that you can find.    Here is one I have used as my starting point and then tweaked substantially for my own vision.   Click here –  BUSINESS PLAN.

Happy selling for years to come!

Southeastern Admin  |  |  770-609-0904

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Hot Apps For Travel & More

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, we’ve discoveredapps these great apps that will make your life easier while on the go. While most of the links below are for Android, you can also find these or similar apps at the Apple app Store.

  • TripAdvisor – This is one I use whenever traveling. TripAdvisor offers millions of traveler reviews and opinions by actual travelers, photos and maps so you can plan your perfect trip. You’ll also be able to discover cool and interesting things to do at any destination. You can use the “Near Me Now” feature to discover options near your current location. TripAdvisor makes it easy to find airfare deals, the best hotels, great restaurants, and fun things to do, wherever you go.  Free.
  •  Kayak – If you’re looking to find a good deal, Kayak’s the #1 Mobile Travel app. It compares hundreds of sites at once.   You can conduct flight and car searches, as well as hotel searches and booking right in the app. You’ll also be able to look up baggage fees and access airline numbers and airport information. Kayak also features Flight tracker and My Trips, so you have your itinerary at your fingertips. Free.
  •  Travelocity – Using your voice (English only), you can quickly search and book your next flight, hotel and rental car straight from the Travelocity app. Features include being able to check flight status, airport delays, TSA wait times, and view trip itineraries.   They also offer savings on “Top Secret hotels” using their new Mobile Exclusive Deals widget. Free.
  •  Hotel Tonight – If you’re looking for a last-minute deal on hotel rooms, this app allows you to save up to 70% in 12 countries, including the US, UK, Mexico, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Italy. They do limit the deal selection, but guarantee that this will allow you to get the best rates possible from their offerings.   There is also a real person that you can speak with 24/7 if you have any questions.   Free.
  •  Valet  – This is a terrific app if you frequently rent cars, or if you just happen to be absent-minded. Valet remembers where you park so you don’t have to.   Just open Valet and click on “Find My Car,” and the app will automatically find where your car is located. Users can also set meter time reminders to you save yourself from getting a ticket. ($3.99).
  •  Digital Receipts – If you’re always on the go, and not particularly organized, this is a great way to track your expenses, and you won’t have to worry about lost receipts.   You can either use your camera to take a quick snap of your receipt or, you can simply tap your phone at checkout on the counter of participating stores. You can then view your report and do your expenses when you’re ready. Free.
  •  CamCard – Used by 50m+ business professionals, CamCard takes a picture of business cards you collect and instantly saves them to your phone’s Contacts.   It syncs all your cards across smartphones, tablets and computers. Free and a Pay Versions.
  •  Heard – This is the coolest thing ever, but only iPhone users get to use this – for now. Ever wanted to record something you just heard? It’s now possible! Heard allows users to record sound from up to 5 minutes in the past. Once you open up the Heard app it will constantly record surround audio into a self-destruct buffer, saving moments that you find worthy. You can then share recorded audio through e-mail or Facebook. There is a free version that records up to 12 seconds in the past, or a $1.99 version that will record up to 5 minutes in the past.

Lora Zibman  |  Southeastern Admin

www.SoutheasternAdmin  |  770-609-0904