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Posts Tagged ‘Deborah Sweeney’

5 Time Management Tips for Working From Home

By Deborah Sweeney5 Time Management Tips for Working From Home

Some people were born to work from home. They don’t need an office to keep them accountable and productive, and they relish in the quietness and comfort of their own homes. Then there are people who need to work a little harder to keep on track. With all the distractions that come with working at home, it’s nice to have some tools in your back pocket to keep yourself focused.

Here are five ways to best manage your time when working from home:

Start the day with a to-do list.

I think this is a great way to start the day no matter where you work. The first thing I do when I start my day is write up a to-do list (physically, on a piece of paper) of everything I know I need to get done before the day’s over. It’s a great way to keep yourself on track throughout the day. It’s also better to have your goals laid out plainly in front of you rather than blindly trying to tackle everything and thinking after every task, “hmm what should I be working on now?” The to-do list cuts out that guess time. There’s also nothing quite as satisfying as crossing off an item on your list.

Set a timer.

If you have a particularly stacked list, and you don’t have a full eight hours to dedicate to everything you need to get done, efficiency is key. Before you get started, calculate how much time you should be spending on each task to get everything done (more…)

Posted in Time Management

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Four Reasons to Incorporate Your At-Home Business

Four Reasons to Incorporate Your At-Home BusinessBy Deborah Sweeney

When you’re working from home, it can be easy to view your business as a side venture. Side ventures don’t need your full attention, and they’re less of a risk. But there’s no reason your at-home business can’t be a full fledge, incorporated business. Small business owners have a couple of different choices when deciding which entity to file their business as.

Here, I’ll go over the corporation.

Corporations have a strong history. 

Corporations have been around for a long time. Some small business owners think that filing a corporation may be too much work with all of the laws, rules, and regulations it takes to keep one afloat. To run a corporation, you need to have board meetings, shareholder meetings, annual meetings, and record every major decision the business goes through. Though, when all of these rules and regulations are upheld, your business gets to stand on a rock-hard foundation. Since corporations have been around for so long, a lot of trial and error went in to creating the most solid, successful type of entity possible.

You have options. 

Though corporations do not have pass-through taxation like an LLC, corporations can always elect to be taxed as an S-Corporation. The S-Corporation solves the issue by allowing any profits earned to pass through the corporation, untaxed, straight to the company shareholders. (more…)

Posted in Business

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How to Make Your Home-Based Business a Partnership

How to Make Your Home-Based Business a PartnershipBy Deborah Sweeney

The vast majority of home-based businesses are sole-proprietorships – according to the SBA a mere 4% of firms based out of a private residence operate as partnerships. And while going it alone may fit the standard idea of a home-based business, running yours with a partner can be a real boon for your burgeoning company. Not only is the total number of partnerships on the rise, but according to the IRS, the average revenue of partnerships grew at triple the speed of sole-proprietorship between 1980 and 2007.

So why the low number of home-based partnerships?

Well, running a business from your home is a very personal undertaking, and it’s uncomfortable inviting someone into your house to help run a company. But if you think someone would make a great business partner, and you can move past that discomfort, a partnership may be a great option for your home-based business as long as you properly set it up.

Decide Exactly Where You’re Going to Work 

One of the trickiest parts to running a home-based business is corralling off an area specifically for your company. It’s very easy to let your home and professional lives bleed into each other when a door or hallway is the only barrier separating the two. Running a partnership from home makes this arrangement even more complicated, so it’s important to set boundaries early on. (more…)

Posted in Work at Home

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How Businesses Should Approach the End of The Year

How Businesses Should Approach the End of The Year By Deborah Sweeney

According to the Kauffman Foundation, after falling for five years, the amount of new entrepreneurs as a percentage of the population finally picked back up. That means, for many, we aren’t just approaching the end of the year – we’re also approaching the end of their first year of business. And as exciting as that is, a lot of new entrepreneurs aren’t quite sure what they should be doing to prepare for the new year. Sure, most know they have to get their books in order for tax season, but many are still asking “what else?” Honestly, the answer varies from business to business, but there are a few, generic end-of-the-year tasks that can help nearly any new company heading into 2016.

Review Your Company’s Staffing Needs

The vast majority of small businesses do not have any employees – 79% of all small firms are non-employers, according to the Small Business Administration. So you shouldn’t feel like you need to hire someone in 2016. (more…)

Posted in Business

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Can a One-Woman Operation Still Provide Over-the-Top Service?

Can a One-Woman Operation Still Provide Over-the-Top Service?By Deborah Sweeney

Over-the-top service is about providing every, single customer with the best possible experience. And while that sounds simple, it’s a concept with which plenty of small business owners struggle. It’s a tall order, especially when you’re a one-woman operation, since you may think the infrastructure just isn’t there to provide the same level of service as bigger competitors. But, believe it or not, your lack of infrastructure is more of a strength than a weakness. Over-the-top service isn’t about smiling before you answer the phone, or placating irate customers with coupons and freebies. Instead, it’s about approaching each and every one of your customers with an honest intent to ensure their experience is absolutely amazing.

Over-the-Top Service Isn’t About Making Dissatisfied Customers Happy

Too many people think OTT service is just about giving stuff away. A customer gets upset, so you solve it either by discounting their next order, or making it free. When you’re just starting out, though, every dollar is precious and you really can’t afford to just give everything away (more…)

Posted in Marketing & PR

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