Tag Archives: women in business

3 Tips To Reduce the Risk of Your Business Being Sued

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Let’s face it…we live in a “sue-happy” nation. Lawsuits for this, lawsuits for that. Some are warranted and others are not. Either way no one wants to get caught up in the paper trail and the headache associated with being served a petition. I have a few tips to share to help REDUCE (because of course there are no guarantees) the chances of being sued.

  1. Incorporate Your Business: If you are sued it would suck if your personal assets got all caught up in the headache! Incorporate your business in your state so that it can exist as an entity separate from you and your personal assets. There are several different types of entities that may provide you with protection. These include: Limited Liability Company, S-corp, C-corp, partnership, Limited Liability Partnership, etc. Each entity is taxed differently. Therefore you should check with a professional in your state to determine which would be the best fit.
  2. Trademark: You print marketing materials, create branded products, create an amazing website all under a business name that you did not know already existed. YIKES! If you do this you are infringing upon the other company’s trademark rights. In order to avoid this from happening be sure that the name you are using is available.. not just in your state but in all states! If it is a name that you  do not want anyone to use in the same business category for which you are using it, you will want to trademark the name.
  3. Legal Agreements: Of course having legal agreements in place will not prevent someone from filing a lawsuit against you. However what it does is makes things crystal clear between each party so that there will not be any (or at least minimal) confusion later. Popular agreements include an employee agreement, vendor agreement, contract employe agreement and more.

This list is short. There are so many other factos that come into place when it relates to protecting your brand. However this list gives you an idea of some things you can implement if you have not already.

Business Blessings,

Lenise

***Sharing this information does not create a professional relationship and it does not replace an attorney. Please seek legal advice for your specific needs.

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4 Tips My 8 Year Old Taught Me About Entrepreneurship

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We really can learn so much from children. Their innocence and their simple perspective on life is refreshing. As a “mompreneur” my day is filled with business duties and with raising children. I find myself discovering similarities in running a business and in parenting. With that being said, my eight year old has inadvertently taught me a few things I can apply to business. Here are four things I can apply

  1. Be Direct and Specific: In business (and in parenting) we must be clear about what we want/need our children to do. Additionally if you have more than one child, you must be clear on to whom you are speaking. Otherwise you get “I did not know I had to take out the trash. You did not tell me” or “I thought you were talking to my brother” Sighhhh… the joys of parenting! It is the same thing in business. Get clear on to whom you are are speaking. Determine who your target audience is and make your actions/marketing/branding, etc clear that you are speaking directly to them and that you need them to take action.
  2. It is ok to do the same thing: If I allowed it my 8 year old would eat pizza and chicken nuggets for lunch and dinner (maybe even breakfast) everyday. He NEVER gets tired of it. He knows what he likes. If a new pizza joint opens my son will be the first in line. Guess what? Your potential clients are the same way. They like what they like. Don’t feel like you have to reinvent the wheel. Just because your industry is “noisy” it does not mean that there is not a place for you to make your mark. Make it better, make it unique, make it you.   Don’t create things that people really don’t want. Give ’em what they want!!! (To my son Evan: if you are reading this it does not mean you will get pizza and chicken nuggets everyday!)
  3. Just have fun: My son takes very few things as serious as he should. I mean he is eight! lol He could care less about the score of his football game as long as he gets to play. He wakes up every single morning singing and dancing to whatever song is popular at the time (I am soooo not a morning person). He laughs when kids tease him. Yes, his confidence is off the charts. I secretly admire that about him. The point is this kid is all about having fun…all day and all night into the wee hours of the morning lol. Sometimes in business we have to stop being so serious and just have a little fun. I know crunching numbers, meeting payroll, making decisions, etc can all get a little stressful. However take a break and remember why you are doing this. Think about what makes you happy and include it in your marketing plan. For creatives developing a marketing strategy should be fun. Let loose girl!
  4. Save your money: My son will search the sofa cushions for loose change. He will do what he can to earn money and keeps it in a secret place. Nope, I don’t even know where he hides it! I admire him because he saves it. He will walk in the toy store and if he learns that he has to buy whatever shiny noisy object he wants he will not get it. If mommy pulls out her wallet he will want two! If he has to spend he suddenly only wants a $.99 pack of gum. As business owners we have to be the same way. SAVE YOUR MONEY! You can have a fabulous 5 figure month and make zero deposits in your account the following month. Don’t spend all your money and get in a bad predicament the next month because you were too loose with your spending.

Sometimes we have to think like eight year olds. Their perspectives are fresh and untainted! Think about what else you can learn from a kid. Let me know what you below what you discover and implement.

Business Blessings,

Lenise

2 Steps to Your Family & Friends Increasing Your Business & Bank Account

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We all have friends (well if you have a personality…smile) and we all have family that we call on for help/ support. In addition the same people call on us for help/support. When I am in a bind and need a babysitter, I pick up the phone and call someone. When a friend/ family member’s car breaks down, they pick up the phone and call and ask me to pick them up. That is the way it’s supposed to be, right?  We all know that we need help at some point in our lives. In my case it is more like I know I need help at some point in my WEEK or DAY! ha!

We quickly ask our friends and family for things that will benefit us in our personal lives, but quite often we forget to include them on our list of those that can help us with our business. Although your friends nor family may be entrepreneurs or be top executives in a company that can benefit you, they are still able to help you take your business to the next level by doing two very simple things.

1. Telling their network about you: Yes, it is that simple. Just tell someone! If you are anything like me you have provided services/ products to people for as little as F-R-E-E! It is what we sometimes do for those that we care about. After giving away your time and resources asking for a “shot out” on social media or a request for them to hand out 25 business cards should be a simple repayment, right? I am willing to bet that this person asked you for your expertise or your product. If they did they likely will be eager to share your info in exchange. Sharing your info can yield you many more clients/sales and CASH than that one freebie cost you.

2. Check their contacts: I am wiling to bet real money (not monopoly money)  that there are people in your contact list in your cell phone or on your email list that can take you and your business to the next level. It may be someone you talk to everyday, but you just have not thought about how they (or someone they know) can help put real money (not monopoly money) in your bank account.

Create a list of your business goals and who you may need to satisfy those goals. Next think about who you know that has the ability or the contacts to get things in motion. For example: your cousin works at IBM. You have been wanting to do corporate training with a company like IBM. Instead of asking your cousin to bring baked beans to the next cookout why not ask her to send a quick email to the HR department?!

You likely have many of the resources that you need right at your fingertips, but you don’t recognize them. I challenge you this week to reflect and then ASK. Ask those in your circle to refer business to you. Ask your family/friends for that perfect intro that can turn your business into a crazy money making machine! Make use of those fabulous connects that are just sitting on. Remember that the key is to ASK. A closed mouth does not get fed.

3 Ways To Avoid Requests to Discount Your Services

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You are in business for yourself.  Every penny you get to pay a bill, to buy groceries or even pay for that well-deserved vacation comes as a result of your own efforts. You do not have the luxury of getting a paycheck from your boss every week. That is why when someone (especially a stranger) asks you to work for free or for a significantly discounted rate you may get upset or even feel a bit insulted.

Why would so may people ask you to provide a service or a product for less than you are clearly requesting? I will tell you why. It is because they do not value your worth! They do not value your worth for one of three reasons:

1. Your pricing is off. You may be selling yourself too CHEAP! Your pricing may not be in alignment with what you are really worth in the eyes of others. That inadvertently makes people feel as though they can nickel and dime you. If your pricing shows your audience that you don’t value yourself and what you offer why should they value you? Step back and look at the message your pricing gives others.

2. Your branding may not be on point. Your brand may give the impression that you want to be recognized as the cheapest in your industry as opposed to the BEST. Your pictures and graphics may not be of the best quality. Your descriptions and copy on your website and marketing materials may not be written in a manner that adequately reflects what results you really can provide. If you do not look the part don’t expect anyone to pay you what you are worth.

3. You are not targeting the right audience. If your marketing and other efforts are reaching a demographic that cannot afford what you are asking how on Earth can you expect them to pay you? Your branding is all on point, your price is definitely in line with what you are worth but the sales just won’t happen. Imagine this: a realtor walks into a homeless shelter trying to sell a million dollar home. They want it. They need it. However they can’t afford that! Essentially that is what you are doing when you are selling to the wrong person. You make them want to buy it soooooo bad, but they can’t. Therefore they get so desperate for it that they ask you to make it more affordable to them. C’mon…stop teasing people! Align your product or service with the RIGHT people.

Adjusting this can be the difference between a $1,000,000 company and a $10,000 company. Stop letting others cause you to question yourself by requesting free or discounted products/ services. You work hard and you have bills to pay just like everyone else in this world. Position yourself correctly so that the thought to request a discount won’t even cross anyone’s mind. At the end of the day you are running a business. The intent of the business is that share your gifts, passion and talent with the world, but also make money! The bills don’t stop. Don’t lose sight of the passion, but also don’t lose sight of what you need in order to continue operating so that you can continue sharing that passion!

Business Blessings!

How To Finally Earn What You Are Worth: FREE Training

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Hey Friend Hey!!!!

How’s it going? I’m pretty happy today because my new site finally launched last night. There have been so many hiccups & it’s  not 100% complete, but I am glad to just be back online. What a fiasco!

Feel free to check out the new layout here and let me know what you think.

I wanted to invite you to a training session I am having. It is absolutely FREE so you don’t have an excuse for not joining me 🙂

Are you in business and finally ready to make what you are WORTH?! If so join me on Periscope so that we can chat about it.

In this training I will tell you:

– minor mistakes (yep, these are mistakes I made at one time too) that are preventing you from really having a breakthrough in your business.

– free marketing tips that can help you GROW, GROW, GROW

– how you can create multiple streams of revenue from just ONE business

– and more!

I am looking forward to seeing you on Periscope on Thursday at 2:30pm ET. No sign ups or opt ins required. Just be sure that you have the Periscope app and tune in. Follow me @mompreneurEsq.

If you do not have the app you can get it on your phone via Apple app store or Google Play for your computer.

Looking forward to seeing you on Periscope on Thursday!

tweet-graphic-trans Click the twitter birdie and invite your friends 🙂

5 Ways to Create a Legacy Instead of a Hustle

I don’t want to create a hustle; I want to create a legacy. What’s the difference you ask? A hustle is something you do to get money quickly. A hustle is something to keep you busy with a bit of extra money in your pocket. A legacy may not pay you much in the beginning, but the rewards are greater. A legacy will make money and makes you happy thereby increasing your longevity. I don’t want the quick money; I want the longevity!

Here are 5 ways to create a LEGACY and not a HUSLTE:

1.     Take yourself seriously. If you treat your business like it’s a quick way to make money it will become just that. Believe in yourself and your services/products. Tell people you are a professional, present yourself as a professional and maintain a work ethic like a professional. Invest in your business, your business development and mentorship. If you take yourself  & what you do seriously so will others.

2.     Do your homework. Yes, your history homework. Look at businesses or entrepreneurs that you admire. Those superheroes likely had humble beginnings. Do a bit of research to find out what their early days were like. Learn from their lessons and study how they grew their legacy.

3.     Think BIG but start SMALL.  Entrepreneurship is a marathon not a sprint! Take your time. Don’t make your business a big business until you have established yourself in the industry. Instead let the business grow with you. Trying to grow with the big business you create may set you up for a quick hustle instead of a lasting legacy. However plan and run your business like it’s an EMPIRE! If you are prepared for the business to become HUGE it won’t take you by surprise.

4.     Redefine. There comes a time in your business when you may have to reinvent your brand. Redefining and reinventing your business to stay relevant is necessary!  You may need to redefine things a bit when you grow, or when you want appeal to a new audience. Don’t be afraid to take your business in a different direction than you initially planned. You can tweak things, but still stay inline with your purpose, mission and personal morals.

5.     Watch your cash flow. Always pay attention to how much money is coming in and how much money is going out. Find ways to keep your overhead low. I do not encourage any business to cut corners; however if you can save a few dollars here or there do it! Buy things in bulk, buy less of something you do not use often, shop around for the best pricing from manufacturers. Losing or wasting money is the quickest way to have to stop your hustle and get a new one. I don’t know about you, but I want a consistent business/ legacy and not the stress of finding new hustles!

I know everyone is different so I ask: what would you rather a hustle or a legacy?

Entrepreneurship: Why it Should Start Young

Enjoy this great article taken from HuffingtonPost.com by Jack Nadel:

July is the month when NFL football teams open their preseason training camps. Hundreds of young men compete for coveted roster spots, and it’s safe to say most started playing football back in grade school. The value of this early exposure is also true for elite athletes in any sport. Think Tiger Woods, Venus and Serena Williams, Peyton Manning, Derek Jeter and Kobe Bryant. Acquiring skills at a young age with the help of experienced teachers can make all the difference.

A while back on 60 Minutes, a segment featured the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship, a special program founded by Steve Mariotti, and the crucial role of entrepreneurship in our economy and the advantage of getting an early start, especially for those who come from low-income communities. One conclusion was that preparation for a business career should begin in high school. In my case, I started at the age of 13 during the Depression. I worked as a florist delivery boy in New York City, and the experience provided an excellent foundation for future success. At a young age, I helped support my family while learning to deal with challenging people and unpredictable situations.

At the age of 19, I enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps and my education took a huge leap. I served as a navigator and radar bombardier on 27 dangerous missions. In 1944, radar was a new technology, and I learned to embrace this leading edge in order to survive. Another lesson was how important it was to fly in accordance with a pre-designed flight plan. Each crew member had a specific role to play, and if anyone did not do his job correctly, we could all perish. Despite coming from vastly differing backgrounds, we developed infinite respect for each other and realized that relationships form the basis for success.

After the war I was ready and eager to immerse myself in commerce. Trans Pacific Traders was the first in a series of my profitable ventures, and each one was built on the knowledge gained from its predecessor. Later in my career, I came to understand that, in most cases, success is an evolutionary process. Today, my business journey spans 70 years, but even now it is still evolving. At this point, my major ambition is to help others become successful entrepreneurs. Our very democracy depends on a middle-class producing better goods and services and creating wealth.

In many ways, an entrepreneur’s career is like a football game. Both combine a swift pace with a highly competitive atmosphere. The “game” is divided into four quarters. In the first quarter you assess the other team’s strengths and weaknesses based on your scouting report. You size up the opposition and create a specific strategy to cross the goal line. During the second and third quarters you execute your game plan to the fullest. Getting there should be as much fun as scoring. In the fourth quarter you consolidate your gains and seek to safeguard a positive outcome.

These days, I’m not only in the fourth-quarter, I’m in the two-minute drill. There isn’t much time left. I know exactly what thought processes brought me through so many situations, and now I have to get my message across succinctly. In essence, “targeted thinking” is at the heart of my advice. It is the ability to zero in on an objective and totally concentrate on efforts to make it happen. This is the most powerful ingredient in the recipe for entrepreneurial success. Along the way distractions will arise, and it is vital that we learn at an early age to harness the power of zeroing in on our business goals.

Change is always occurring, and the only thing that remains constant is that your future belongs to you–you are the one who makes the choices. This is the risk that everyone faces, but it is also the excitement. Overall, I am an opportunist pure and simple. We’ve all heard the classic debate about whether the glass is half empty or half full. Pessimists reflect on what is missing, while optimists see a brighter future. However, sometimes during their discussion, opportunists will walk in and drink the water. The advantage of starting early is that we allow ourselves time to grow into entrepreneurship. When the right opportunities come along, we will see them and act with confidence.

In light of my desire to support the next generation of entrepreneurs and pass on what I’ve learned from a successful career, and especially with those whom I can personally relate to and who may need it most, I’ve pledged to gift up to 100,000 high school students in the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship program with a digital copy of my award-winning book, “The Evolution of an Entrepreneur,” featuring 50 of my best tips for surviving and thriving in business.

Both the NFTE organization and I agree that students can learn to become entrepreneurs and that entrepreneurship can be a gateway for those who might not otherwise have opportunities for financial prosperity.

At 90, I firmly believe that early entrepreneurial training can make all the difference for achieving success, and NFTE is proving this theory with their program statistics. Entrepreneurship became my ticket to get ahead in life, and I know it still does and will for others, too, I just hope more embrace entrepreneurship and take their future into their own hands sooner rather than later, for their own sake and for the sake of our economy.