5 Smart Steps to Become a Better Small Business Owner

As an entrepreneur or small business owner, you dream big. That’s probably one reason you pursued this career path in the first place. Dreaming big is great, but it can also be paralyzing. Where do you start?

How to become a SocialMedia Manager by Urs Steiner via CC BY 2.0

“Entrepreneurs are often defined by the size of our ambitions, but the best way to make a big impact is to start small steps.”                                                                -Damon Brown, entrepreneur & author

Damon Brown, entrepreneur and author of Our Virtual Shadow, recently published a smart article for Inc. entitled 21 Simple Ways to be a Better Entrepreneur. In it, he shares easy steps you can take to make yourself more efficient and productive in 2016 and beyond.

Here are our favorites:

  • Schedule a blank day: Yes, you’re busy, but that doesn’t do much for you or your business in the end. Scheduling a blank day (which isn’t a vacation day) can help you focus on the big picture and shift direction if needed. When’s the last time you’ve scheduled a blank day?

Please stop telling me you’re busy.

  • Skip the heavy lifting on Monday: Mondays are a drag. No one really looks forward to them and you’re rarely satisfied with your production. If you work over the weekend, Mondays are even worse. So take Brown’s advice and only handle light lifting on Mondays, if you can.

Your Comfort Zone: Where the Magic Happens

  • Write more, type less: How often do you physically write things down? Strategies, ideas, thoughts, musings… While we’re always fans of the written word, writing by hand can create stronger connections, motivate, inspire and help you relax.

Things I Carry: Pen and Paper

  • Walk more: Innovative ideas rarely come to us while we’re sitting behind a desk. Physical activity can be a wonderful way to break out of a rut or see a situation more clearly. Struggling to put together a plan for a client? Trying to make a difficult decision for your business? Get up and go for a walk. You (and your brain) will be glad you did.

Need an Idea? Just Walk Away…

  • Read a book a week: Entrepreneurs and small business owners need to be constantly learning, and books are the perfect way to accomplish this arduous task. They’re also a way to travel to other cultures, learn from other people’s mistakes and get lost in another world. Even if you’re not a writer, reading is a habit that you should develop.

Eat, Pray, Love — In Business Too

Who are we kidding? We loved Brown’s entire list, especially the coffee and poker suggestions. What are your favorites?

We do struggle with a couple of them, especially In the first hour of your day, avoid email and social media. Perhaps this is a goal we can tackle in 2016. Which suggestion(s) do you struggle with the most?

Whether you agree with Damon Brown’s suggestions or not, we all want to be more productive and efficient. What additional tips can you offer to achieve these goals in 2o16?

We can help you be more productive and efficient by assisting with your marketing, writing and social media needs. Let’s discuss how we can help you!

Pic credit: How to become a SocialMediaManager by Urs Steiner via CC BY 2.0

Taking small steps to dream big,
Jaime

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Gender Equality: Making Progress But #NotThere Yet

March 8th was International Women’s Day, and this year’s celebration made me think.

Make it happen! International Women's Day 2015

Making progress one day at a time thanks to ladies such as Maya Angelou.

It was inspirational to see the tweets, posts and updates across social media celebrating achievements by women. I f*cking love science‘s #WomenYouShouldHaveHeardOf campaign was downright educational. How many of these ladies did you learn about in school?

It was also a little dispiriting in 2015 that we still have such a long way to go. Glass ceilings and cliffs, gender stereotypes and marginalization are all alive and well today. Where do we go from here?

The good news (for women and men) is that more people than ever are discussing the problem, which is how problems are solved. Adam Grant, author of Give and Take, explained to Inc. why unfair gender norms around giving — where women are taken for granted while men are rewarded — are bad for businesses. Have two minutes? Listen here.

Elsewhere, the HeForShe movement is bringing together men and women in the push for gender equality worldwide. The movement’s goal is to “bring together one half of humanity in support of the other half of humanity, for the benefit of all.

No Ceilings: The Full Participation Project

While we’ve made progress toward gender equality, the No Ceilings initiative reminds us that we’re #NotThere yet.

“Women’s rights are human rights.” -Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Secretary of State

No Ceilings: The Full Participation Project, co-founded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and The Clinton Foundation, is bringing a data-driven approach to gender equality. And the data shows that while significant gains have been made in women’s rights in the past two decades, we’re not there yet.

That was the topic discussed by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Chelsea Clinton and Melinda Gates during Not There Yet: A Data Driven Analysis of Gender Equality, an event held on March 9th. Miss it? Watch it here.

Inching closer but not there yet… That seems to be the status of gender equality today. My hope? I want to live to see the day that we achieve true gender equality. An ambitious dream, but a worthwhile one.

Moving forward one day at a time,

Jaime

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