Veterans, Guards, Reservists

Steve Strauss looks at the trend that is dominating the world, Entrepreneurship.

Faithful readers of this column (thank you very much!) know that every year I post a two-part Top Trends in Small Business piece. It is always interesting to see what is coming down the pike, and it is equally interesting to notice how much, and how little, the list changes every year.

BARKS Dog Daycare

Owner/Founder
Rue Reynolds and Toni Reynolds
My Location
180 Thunderbird Drive
Richmond Hill GA 31324
United States
Year Company Formed
2011
What's Great About My Mentor?

Bob is honest, straightforward and conveys a genuine desire to see our business flourish. He was

invaluable in finding shortcomings and offering suggestions for shoring up weaknesses in our business

plan. His philosophy that our plan should answer all questions before they are asked went a long way in

demonstrating to investors that we “did our homework” and gave great thought to mitigating risk.

As the company continues its steady growth, we will continue to seek guidance from Bob and SCORE to

navigate the pitfalls of business growth and expansion.

How SCORE Helped

It took several years of research and a focused business plan to secure the funding required for the

company to commence operations in late 2011. Currently, the company has a client roster numbering

in the hundreds and provides boarding & daycare services to over 450 dogs each month on average.

Our Grooming has also become a very strong revenue stream and continues to grow on par with our

occupancy.

After months of market research and formulation of our business plan we met with SCORE to have a

thorough review. Since we would be using our business plan to secure startup capital we wanted to

make sure we had all the bases covered and that our plan demonstrated that our idea was lucrative,

logical and had provisions for risk mitigation. Our SCORE counselor was able to identify key weaknesses

in our plan that had to be addressed before going forward.

An added benefit of working with SCORE was the broad knowledge base held by their counselors;

regardless of the problem we faced whether it be in marketing, finance or accounting there was usually

a SCORE counselor who could lend aid or at the very least, introduce us to someone who could.

 

       I started my refrigeration repair business six months ago and am now at the point of 
needing to interview candidates for my first employee. I’ve never done this before. What tips can 
you offer?

About the Author

       This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration.
       Have a question you’d like answered in this column? E-mail it to info@score-manchester.org, with “Ask SCORE” in the subject line.

SCORE ExpertAnswers

No matter the small business, each entrepreneur faces one similar issue: Pricing. Are you out pricing your customers? Are you under pricing yourself? Is the difference between a year in the red or the black as simple as your price tag? This month SCORE helps you find the answers to these questions.

Few people are better qualified to discuss this issue than Ann Logue, who spent 12 years as a financial market analyst before turning her talents to writing. She also shares her expertise as a lecturer in finance at the University of Illinois at Chicago, teaching both undergraduate and MBA students about corporation finance and international financial markets. Ann will go over the finer points of pricing to help you maximize your pricing for profitability. 

Q:

Pricing is something that all small businesses wrestle with, particularly those just getting started. What are the fundamentals for determining the ideal price for a product or service?

About the Author

Ann Logue - Author and Business Analyst

Ann Logue is a freelance writer and consulting analyst who is fascinated by business and technology. She has a particular interest in regulatory issues and corporate governance. She is the author of Emerging Markets for Dummies, Socially Responsible Investing for Dummies, Day Trading for Dummies, and Hedge Funds for Dummies, and has written for Barron’s, InvestHedge, Newsweek Japan, and BusinessWeek Chicago, among other publications. As an editor and ghostwriter, she worked on a book published by the International Monetary Fund and another by a Wall Street currency strategist. She is a lecturer in finance at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her current career follows 12 years of experience as an investment analyst. She holds a B.A. from Northwestern University, an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, and the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

 

Squaw Valley Business Owners Receive Sargent Shriver Award

Date
Tue, 2013-09-17 15:32

Al and Christy Kroell are a story of bravery and commitment to community and the American dream.

The Squaw Valley couple suffered serious injuries in separate accidents that required years of rehabilitation. But they found the courage and ambition to start a business and succeed.

They jump-started a business called ChristyAl Plaques & Engraving with the help of the local Small Business Administration SCORE chapter.

 

Ask SCORE
 
       I’ve never been the most organized person, but it’s reached the point where the clutter in 
my office is starting to hinder my productivity. How can I get a handle on the paper monster 
that’s threatening to consume me?
 
 

About the Author

       This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration.
       Have a question you’d like answered in this column? E-mail it to info@score-manchester.org, with “Ask SCORE” in the subject line.

Ask SCORE
 
       I’m currently in the planning stage for a new retail bakery. I’m going to need some funding for equipment, but my personal credit history is a bit spotty. How much is that going to hurt me, and how can I combat it?

About the Author

       This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration.
       Have a question you’d like answered in this column? E-mail it to info@score-manchester.org, with “Ask SCORE” in the subject line.

The smartphone is changing how consumers make buying decisions. With just a few taps, you can find a contractor, schedule an appointment, or make a purchase and have it shipped to your house. Mobile commerce is so quick and easy that eMarketer™ predicts that more than 77 percent of all U.S. online shoppers will use a smartphone or tablet to buy at least one item by 2017.
 
This dramatic growth presents a big opportunity for small businesses that can use this sales and marketing channel to their advantage. Many have already realized the potential: Nearly three-quarters of the businesses surveyed in the 2013 AT&T Small Business Technology Poll are increasing their mobile marketing budgets this year. Mobile is not just for retail shops and restaurants. Professional services firms, medical practices, and other businesses also need to master how to use it.

Becoming a Mobile Marketing Master

Sometimes the best new business ideas are right under your nose. If you’re like most entrepreneurs, once you’ve got your current business at a comfortable (and profitable) level, you’ll be itching to start something new. If you’ve already added a product or service to your existing business and its popularity has taken off, it may be time to start a spinoff business.

By Rieva Lesonsky

Sometimes the best new business ideas are right under your nose. If you’re like most entrepreneurs, once you’ve got your current business at a comfortable (and profitable) level, you’ll be itching to start something new. If you’ve already added a product or service to your existing business and its popularity has taken off, it may be time to start a spinoff business.

Before you embark on a whole new adventure:

About the Author

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at twitter.com/rieva and visit her blog at SmallBizDaily.com.

Visit her website SmallBizTrendCast to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.

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