If you own your own business, you probably travel a lot to business meetings, interviews, stores to stock up on supplies, and conferences. This could take you away from your desk for several hours, maybe even several days. So how do you get the work you need to complete done while you’re traveling? Here are seven tools that can help.
In business, as in life, my grandfather, Bob Stewart, is my inspiration.
As owner of Robert Stewart Enterprises, a company that provides parking lot and street sweeping services, he serves as its highly visible, ebullient chief executive. With folksy wit and hilarious stories about his early days owning a new and used furniture store, he’s spent the greater part of 6 decades as an entrepreneur, and as the very public face of his companies. It’s why, he says, absent large marketing and advertising budgets, he’s never had a problem finding clients, even during difficult economic times. Rarely seen without his signature white, immaculately starched “Robert Stewart Enterprises” button-down shirt, his tireless advocacy on behalf of his company has paid dividends in longevity and in business success.
No more regular 9-to-5 gig working for someone else and playing by their rules. You have a great idea for a business and you are ready to be your own boss. Before you can spread your wings and fly solo, you need to prepare your family for the entrepreneurial path. Your spouse and your children need to be engaged early on in the process about what’s involved with the transition from having a job to running a business.
The old saying ”everybody loves a comedian” has regretfully given birth to a time where everybody thinks they’re a comedian. Sadly, what many have failed to realize is the old saying noted above was meant to be sarcastic…We all love good humor, but the truth is all humor is not good. The timely and appropriate use of humor is an asset to any leader. Likewise, distasteful or inappropriately timed humor can be a significant liability. As a leader it’s quite easy to get a laugh – your title will virtually guarantee it. Therefore it’s important for leaders to become skilled at distinguishing the difference between a compliant chuckle and a sincere chortle. Good humor can bring people closer, but poor humor can be one of the strongest repellents known to man.
Ethical employees are those who make decisions in the best interest of their employers, co-workers and outside stakeholders in addition to themselves. Workplace ethics center on such diverse issues as discrimination, fraud, theft and personal politics. Although all people are intrinsically valuable, ethical employees can actually be more financially valuable to their employers, and more valued by co-workers and peers. Understanding how ethics can make you a better person in the workplace is a solid starting point for a commitment to always doing the right thing.
By Damien James, an EO Melbourne member and the founder of Aged Foot Care Australia P/L.
I’m sure you’ve offered someone a job and it didn’t work out as planned, right? Well, have you ever made such a poor recruitment decision that it cost you your entire business, all the money you’ve ever earned and your reputation? I did, and it turned out to be the best professional decision of my life.
It all started in 1997, when I graduated from university with a bachelor’s degree in podiatry. I had always dreamed of running a successful company—just like my father—so I started a mobile podiatry business that catered to nursing home patients. Within three years, I was operating Australia’s largest podiatry service and treating more than 1,000 patients a week! Flushed with confidence, I launched a second business; a chain of sports clinics that boasted high-profile clients like Martina Navratilova and Lleyton Hewitt. As you can imagine, life was good! I was making money and living the entrepreneurial dream … and then it turned into a nightmare.
Stress protects you when you’re in danger, helps you rise to challenges, and sharpens your concentration when it’s time to focus. Does this sound like you when you’re stressed out? For many, the answer is no! When working the way it’s meant to, stress can be very productive. But when stress is chronic, it isn’t serving you and can really take a toll on your health, affecting sleep, mood, concentration, immune functioning and blood pressure as well as many other biological processes. When stress feels like it’s getting out of hand, it’s time to take some steps to get it back under control.
Many people would like to be self-employed but fear the risk — with good reason. Within five years, half of new businesses are out of business.
Ironically, you’re particularly likely to fail if you follow such standard business school exhortations as “Innovate!” While such advice makes for interesting class discussions and may be appropriate for “intrapreneurs” inside deep-pocketed corporations, it puts the average entrepreneur at grave risk of going bust.
The key to maximizing your chances of success is to do the opposite of what is taught in business school:
Our business, Diversified Industrial Staffing in Troy, recently celebrated its 14th year in business. During that time, we have had several dozen internal employees and have placed several thousand in various jobs. When I started out 14 years ago, the relationship between me as an employer and my employees was very hierarchical and very top down in nature. Employees came to the office, did their job, and went home. The relationship was almost transactional in nature, devoid of warmth and intimacy.