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7 Keys to Running A Successful Family Business

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7 Keys to Running A Successful Family Business

Family businesses are great;

They often make some of the best products and perform some of the best services around. They often get overlooked when they compete with bigger franchised stores because by comparison their resources can be limited.

However, that doesn’t mean by opening and running a family business doesn’t mean that you can’t be very successful.

 

7 Keys to A Successful Family Business

Many people find success through providing a great product or service for their customers. Owning your own business is a highly popular trend nowadays. Family-owned businesses make up a large percentage of small businesses in the world.

It is a risky deal working with family members as relationships can be strained and become complicated. The hard part is learning how to put family emotions aside and leave work at work and home at home.

When you are at work, you have to realize that the business comes first.

So follow a few steps to improve the success rates of your family business:

 

1. Work with Co-Leaders

Having one person lead the entire family business could lead to conflict. Let everyone share his or her opinion and have a major role in running the company. With co-leaders, you have more agreements and fewer fights that could turn personal.

This also helps create a checks and balances system in your family business.

It is good and healthy for everyone to feel like they have some sort of say within business. It is also a great way to find the good, the better, and the best ideas when it comes to management, expansion, and other aspects of your business.

The less of the hostile work environment you have the better and more successful your business can be. With that said, it does not mean you will not have problems and disagreements with one another.

You will just have to find the best solutions to work through them together in a peaceful and civil matter so that it does not hurt your family relationships and so that it doesn’t hurt your business as well.

 

2. Make Contracts

Contracts are a great way to help maintain a business relationship with your family members at work. It holds everyone accountable to their role and how they treat each other within the company.

Avoid shaking hands as a way to seal agreements with your family. For every serious business deal you have, create a written contract with terms and conditions. Every contract is legal binding and able to be settled in court.

This will help you to make sure that everyone in your family knows their role and what their contract says. It makes it legally binding and it helps keep everyone in check.

 

3. Demote Rather Than Fire

Consider demoting your family employees instead of firing them.

Firing a family member is more personal and dramatic than firing a stranger. You could draw major rifts in the family and cause conflicts that last for lifetimes. Consider their skills and choose positions that are better suited to them.

The last thing you want to do is create a rift with that family member outside of work. You don’t want the business to come between you and that family member in your life outside of work.

Do everything you can to avoid firing unless you absolutely have to.

Make sure they understand these conditions when they sign the contract as well. It will help save you some headache and hopefully some heartache down the road.

 

4. Enroll in Business Courses

Enroll in courses to improve your finance and management skills.

There are certificates, undergraduate and graduate degrees offered in different fields, such as business administration, accounting and marketing. The online MBA degree program is the most popular type of program taken by online students.

 

5. Offer Valuable Criticism

Criticism is extremely valuable in the workplace.

When working with family members you want to make sure it given in a way that is constructive rather than destructive. Offer helpful criticism to every member of the team. All employees must know where their strengths and weaknesses are.

It is important to know what they do well versus what they do not so well.

It is what will help them build on their strengths and improve upon their weaknesses. You cannot improve the business without placing the most focus on your employees’ needs.

You want to make sure that every family member and other employees are as equipped as possible to succeed in the business. Keep in mind that when your employees succeed and have success, then so will your business.

 

6. Choose Professionals Only

Avoid placing relatives in high positions just because they ask.

They need to be qualified for the position. Make sure your other employees are thoroughly qualified for the job as well. Compare the education and work experience of all applicants regardless of their relation.

If there is someone else in our even outside of your company that is more qualified for the job, then that is the person you should hire.

The key is to make sure that all positions are filled with the right people making sure everyone is on the “right bus” and in the “right seats” on that bus. This is key to the future of your company and its success especially if you serve customers and clients.

 

7. Let Each Generation Make Decisions

Your parents’ way of thinking is not the same as your way of thinking or even your children’s. In every new generation, there are significant changes in trends and technology.

Keep an old business new by mixing ideas from different generations.

Being able to adapt to the times you live in will ensure your businesses survival for generations to come and it helps make sure that it is ready to be handed down to whoever in your family will be taking over the business.

Even people who grow up in the same house and attend the same schools will have different business views. Be extra cautious when you turn family members into business partners.

Review the most important ways to ensure that your family business remains a success.

 

Summary

Here’s a quick recap on the 7 keys to running a successful family business:

  1. Work with co-leaders
  2. Make contracts
  3. Demote rather than fire
  4. Enroll in business courses
  5. Offer valuable criticism
  6. Choose professionals only
  7. Let each generation make decisions

Are you running a family business? Leave a comment below.

Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from West Jordan, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.

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Entrepreneurship

Can You use a Credit Card to Start a Business?

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Can You Use A Credit Card to Start A Business

It’s not unusual to think about credit cards when it comes to setting up a new business;

They’re a quick, easy way to get money and can be paid back at a reasonable rate when you may not quite have the cash flow.

It’s a move that’s being made more and more often as banks make it more difficult to take business loans. It’s now thought that the majority of small businesses use credit cards to help finance their business. And with good reason too.

One of the main reasons is that most people looking to start up a business won’t necessarily have business credit meaning a loan is out of the question.

This means that people turn to their personal credit cards to get things off the ground. While this isn’t a bad move, in fact, you can earn some pretty hefty rewards by doing this. You will be personally liable for any debts that may amount.

 

How to Get Great Deals on Credit Cards

However, you can get some good deals with credit cards.

There are a number of sign-up bonuses available with certain credit card companies; while you’ll also pick up things such as air miles. Which may come in handy for your business further down the line.

Tons of companies are now offering this. So for many who are looking to fund a business, it makes perfect sense to look towards a personal credit card. You can find more out by visiting a card’s website and is becoming one of the first port of calls for start-ups these days.

That’s because it’s so hard to find capital. If you’re new to business, it’s unlikely you’re going to qualify for a bank loan, so a credit card at least offers some form of protection.

 

Shop Around

One major thing to do if starting up a business is first finding a credit card with the lowest possible interest available. If a person has generally gone through life with good credit, it stands to reason that a good interest rate will be negotiable.

This is ultimately vital because, while a personal credit card can be great for starting a business, it can also affect your life. A large sum of money on a credit card may damage credit scores and even if bills are paid on time, it can stop the acceptance of mortgages or other loans.

That’s why it’s key to get the best possible deal, and only fund a business with credit cards if in a good position to do so.

Ultimately, if you need to get your business off the ground though, it’s going to be by any means necessary.

While a bank loan may be a better option or things such as crowdfunding or investors; if none of these options are available, there’s no reason why your great idea for a business should suffer.

If it’s ultimately going to make money in the long run, using a personal credit card to fund a start-up is a generally accepted way of going about it.

It has its perks and you can pay the balance back over time, just as you would any other loan or money lending. It could be just the sort of small investment needed…

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Entrepreneurship

The Jet Set: How to Make Money from Your Travelling

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How to Make Money from Your Traveling

There’s something widely appealing about just packing everything up and jetting off into the sunset. Leaving the job behind, the rent, the utility bills and exploring what the world has to offer. One problem, money.

It’s one of the main things holding people back from exploring the world for six months, and it really doesn’t need to. More people than ever before are making money as they go, and that doesn’t necessarily mean just getting behind a bar a few nights a week either.

We’re talking digital, laptop in on your lap, mojito in your hand, overlooking the beach.

 

How to Make Money from Your Traveling

So, don’t let the thought of money ruin the chance to travel the globe, take one of these pretty simple steps and make your dream a reality. Your boarding pass awaits…

 

1. Work Freelance

One of the most common ways to make money while on your travels is to simply work freelance. So many jobs these days lend themselves to working remotely, while you may also be able to transport your business to all corners of the world.

Careers such as graphic design, writing, even consultancy jobs can be done electronically, while the likes of Skype, email, and Whatsapp make communication available instantly.

Most jobs will allow you to work on the go in at least some aspect. You can fit your earnings around your rest days traveling, while if you’re a creative and make arts and crafts, you can spend your downtime building and making, and spend the weekends selling at local markets and craft fairs.

Markets all over the world are generally open to welcoming new stalls, particularly if you’re offering something different to the usual, and you can make some serious money.

Setting up a stall at markets popular with tourists is usually a good way of making money, so it’s worth searching for your local market once in a town.

You can then pack up and move on to the next one during your travels.

 

2. Spend Wisely

Of course, to make and save money you also have to spend wisely. Most of us would rely on a credit card while traveling, so get one where you can maximize your rewards.

There are dozens of cards out there tailored towards travel, so make sure you check out a rewards calculator to estimate how much you can likely earn from a card.

Ensuring you can pay the money back is key though, so it is worth combining this method of making money with one of the others on this blog. Earning air miles will certainly enable you to save money on any flights you might take further down the line on your travels.

 

3. Create A Blog

There are tons of fantastic travel blogs out there which offer fun and informative information on where they are in the world. Think you can do better? Then start a blog and see for yourself.

There’s money to be made from blogging, with businesses often keen to feature. You may not be offered money, but rather a product, which will at least save you money further down the line when needing to buy the items in question.

Advertising and promotions can make you serious money, all from telling people exactly what you’re up to in the world. It’s easier said than done though. Monetising a blog requires hard work, persistence, and regular posting – again, easier said than done!

Success won’t happen overnight, so it’s important to start working on a travel blog well in advance of heading out on your adventures. What’s more, if you can find a niche and make your blog stand out, even better.

 

4. Sell Your Snaps

If you’re snap happy when away from home, you may be able to make some money from them. There are dozens of sites on the market that will give you commission for photos you submit that sell.

For example, Alamy allows users to upload photos to the site and if anyone, or any business, was to purchase the photo you’d earn 50% commission. Likewise, sites such as Fotolia, Bigstock, and Shutterstock will also give you a commission for any photos sold via their sites.

It’s becoming more and more popular for business to use images like this instead of regular stock photos, as they’re a little more personal and give consumers a consumer side of the coin.

In some cases, a business may then contact you directly having seen your photos and commission you to do some work independently, then the big bucks really come rolling in.

 

5. Teach the Language

One of your greatest assets is your language and many countries are crying out for teachers of English as a foreign language.

If you’re planning on spending a significant amount of time in a country, you can organize to become a teacher and make money while you discover a whole new world.

So many people have found teaching the English language fulfilling while traveling, whether that be one on one tutoring or to entire classrooms.

Before you head off traveling, you’ll need to get an accreditation and of course, the sooner you research where you can teach, the more likely you are of getting a position. You can make some good money from this, although there are also other avenues you can take when it comes to teaching.

If you’re particularly sporty, you can take your knowledge to other parts of the world and teach youngsters how to play various sports.

Soccer is naturally one of the more popular coaching roles, and many who have played the game as a youth themselves will take up this in the likes of China, USA, and African nations.

Other teaching opportunities include art, computing and specific trades such as building, plumbing, accounting and more. Essentially, if you’re trained in a particular area which would benefit other parts of the world, there may be opportunities to teach it.

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Entrepreneurship

6 Mistake to Avoid When Launching An Email Marketing Campaign

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6 Mistakes to Avoid When Launching An Email Marketing Campaign

When it comes to launching an email marketing campaign, there are loads of potential pitfalls to watch out for. Unfortunately, the vast majority of us simply have to learn by a process of trial and error and hope that the mistakes we make don’t prove to be too disastrous.

Luckily for you, we’ve compiled some of the most common errors made by those piecing together an email marketing campaign – take a look at where so many people fall down, and try to avoid making these mistakes in your own efforts!

 

1. Failure to Identify an Audience

This is a mistake made all too often in the world of marketing in general. No matter what it is that you’re promoting – be it a product, an event, a course, or anything else whatsoever – there must be a target audience in mind.

The demographic you’re aiming for should inform pretty much every aspect of the marketing campaign, and it’s something you’ll have to keep in mind from the first draft all the way through to the completed product.

When you’re putting together your marketing campaign, think carefully about who you’re targeting. How old are they? What’s their income? What are their hobbies – all of these sorts of questions (and a whole lot more besides) should be constantly at the forefront of your mind?

Once you’ve identified your audience, you can tailor your content to suit the demographic. This means adopting the right tone of voice, utilizing appropriate imagery, color schemes, and much, much more.

Failure to identify an audience will mean that your campaign will lack structure and direction, and probably won’t end up striking a chord with your ideal customers or recipients… so think carefully, do your research, and get it right!

 

2. Incorrect Grammar & Spell Check

Nowadays, it is hard to imagine how you can miss a grammar mistake, having so much correction tools. Grammarly is a good example of this field instant improvement.

But, honestly, it’s really naive to think that apps and tools can polish up your letter so qualitative as the professional writers could make.

Lots of young entrepreneurs and business newbies used to hesitate with their written letters proofreading (or rewriting) by experts, without taking into consideration the fact, that these services make a huge difference.

When it comes to e-mail marketing, being creative sometimes is not enough. And remember, if you think that your primary letter is perfect, it is the first sign that you extremely need it to be revised by professional.

 

3. Making Your Message Too Impersonal

Another common error when it comes to a marketing campaign is all about the tone and wording you use in your messages. Nobody likes to feel as though they are being spammed by online junk mail, which simply flies into their inbox and doesn’t speak directly to the recipient.

Conversely, personalized, customized and tailored content pretty much always delivers far more effective and positive results… so you should absolutely be bearing this in mind when working on your campaign.

There are plenty of tools you can use to make sure your emails utilize the name of the recipient you’re targeting, and this can make a significant difference to how the mail is received (and whether it gets opened at all or tossed into the trash folder).

Also, small customization techniques such as setting up separate mailing lists for potential customers from different regions, backgrounds, or age brackets also leads to higher conversion rates, too.

 

4. Being Too Clever

When it comes to launching a successful email marketing campaign, often less really is more. Make sure your pages are clean, concise, and not overloaded with data, images, or things like unnecessary videos.

The main reason for this is that today’s web users prefer uncluttered spaces which allow a message to come across clearly, and people have only a tiny fraction of the patience they once had for loading times.

Even a lag of a couple of seconds is more than enough to get the average web user to lose patience and click that ‘back’ button, so keep your campaign simple, speedy, and easy to receive.

 

5. Not Being Creative Enough

On the flip side of the previous point, it’s all well and good keeping things simple, but unless your campaign stands out from the crowd, it’s not going to make the impact you want.

There are tens of thousands of campaigns doing the rounds at any given time, and if you want your potential customers to sit up and take notice, you’re going to have to think a bit outside the box.

This could be as simple as coming up with a memorable tagline or kicking off your email with an image that will stick in the recipient’s mind.

Get your creative team to work on something which immediately grabs the attention, and keep honing the imaginative aspect of your campaign until you get it right.

 

6. Lack of a Follow Up

Gaining new customers and a wider clientele is the entire reason you’re running an email marketing campaign.

As such, when the responses started flooding in, make sure you have systems in place to deal with them efficiently and with the same tone and warmth, you established in the initial contact.

A good follow-up is vital for your conversion rates, so don’t miss the opportunity to make it all worth your while.

 

Summary

Here’s a quick recap on the mistakes to avoid when launching an email marketing campaign:

  1. Failure to identify an audience
  2. Incorrect grammar & spell check
  3. Making your message too impersonal
  4. Being too clever
  5. Not being creative enough
  6. Lack of a follow up

Have anything to add to this article? Leave a comment below.

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