Thursday, March 24, 2016

Webinar: Access to Capital 101 - Funding Options

Access to Capital 101: Funding Options to Start and Grow Your Business
Rhea Aguinaldo
National Entrepreneurship Outreach Manager

Are you having trouble obtaining funding for your business? Through this free national webinar series we will help you navigate the funding landscape and connect you with resources to help you obtain the capital you need to start and grow your business. 

We will present an overview of alternative lending options including microloans, SBA's loan guarantee program, CDFIs and reputable online options, key questions to consider when seeking funding, tips to help determine the best option for your business and helpful tools and resources.

Friday, March 25, 2016 
11:00 AM — 12:00 PM PDT

Wednesday, March 30, 2016
11:00 AM — 12:00 PM PDT

Wednesday, April 6, 2016
11:00 AM — 12:00 PM PDT

Wednesday, April 13, 2016
11:00 AM — 12:00 PM PDT

Published by Small Business Majority - - 866-597-7431
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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Tips for First-time Real Estate Investors

Proceed slowly.

First time real estate investors may use Monopoly.
Monopoly can be your inspiration for your real estate strategy!

Although you may think you can quadruple your profits by buying multiple properties in a short time frame, don’t! With your first few properties, you will learn various lessons. Yes, you can multiply profits, but if you have serious issues, such as not properly structuring contractor contracts, misrecorded deeds, unsold or unrented stock, or not having the right real estate agents or property managers on your team, those issues will be greatly magnified with the multiple properties. Several issues with one property are headaches. However, those same issues with multiple properties at the same time can cause serious financial losses!

Attend training and networking events.

 I initially assumed that, because I was adept at buying, renovating and holding small multi-family units, that I was just as great at buying, renovating and selling single family homes. Not! Different property types have different concerns and nuances. Also, buying, renovating and holding differs from buying, renovating and selling shortly thereafter. By attending relevant training or information sessions offered by investment groups, etc. and networking, you can learn the ins and outs of different properties and strategies faster and avoid much of the pain that comes with learning EVERYTHING through your own personal experiences.

Pursue the strategy that works for you.

Pursue the property type and strategy that you think works best for you but be open to change, slightly or completely. I started by renting my personal home when I moved overseas. I then moved to buying small fourplexes and loved it. Thereafter, I moved into renting and flipping single family homes and hated it. Everyone is different. I personally don’t like to educate first time home buyers or first time investors every time I sell a property. But others love it! Therefore, more sophisticated buyers – ongoing real estate investors or those moving up – are a much better fit for me. However, how would I have known this if I hadn’t pursued the single family home market? Answer: I would not.

Consider investing as a continual learning process.

You must consider investing as a continual learning process. Not just about what you’re doing, but also about yourself. Do not call it a “failure” when things don’t work out. Just do a post-mortem (an analysis of everything that went according to plan, much better or much worse) and make adjustments accordingly. A mistake is a learning opportunity. Sometimes are assumptions are wrong but you won’t know this until you test them! Then, when you find the product and strategy that works well for you and you’ve ironed out the kinks, accelerate and grow as fast as you want. That’s when you can begin to automate what you do to truly leverage your knowledge and experience.

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Sunday, March 13, 2016

Your E-Mail Signature

Your email signature is important. Previously, mine included my name, email address and phone no. However, that did not generate any calls or emails. I then read an article or book chapter about how your email signature should work for you. When we finally created a tagline for our business, The Resourceful CEO, I later added the tagline to my email signature. 

Additional Signature Content

After my book (The Funding Is Out There! Access the Cash You Need to Impact Your Business) was published, I added a link to the Amazon page for my book to my signature. (And yes. People have told me they clicked on the email link and purchased the book!) I have not yet directly associated Facebook signups and Twitter followers with my email signature. I previously had our Facebook page in my signature but realized most of our B2B customers did not engage with us on Facebook. 

Consistent Branding

However, I know that consistent branding and messaging across platforms, including social media, is important and I ensure that my email signature supports this. You be the judge: My email signature is below.

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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Why Are So Many Companies Against Remote Hires?

A virtual work force can help small businesses.
Remote workers can be very productive, while still taking time for themselves.

I hire remote workers / virtual work force.

 I do hire employees to work remotely. I also allow existing employees to work from home /virtually on occasion. I have a strong operations background. For example, I always share the company’s goals with employees and create position contract that clearly delineate what each position’s (and the person holding that position) strategic and tactical responsibilities are, and how those tie in to the company. Because I make the expectations and deliverables very clear, I can focus on results, not whether someone is working. If the results aren’t occurring, they aren’t working or something else is wrong. 

All people do not work the same.

I came to the determination that all is not created equal in a job I had after grad school. I worked 9-10 hours per day and there was someone else who worked 12-13 hours per day. His manager thought he worked harder than I did until I pointed out that our deliverables were exactly the same. However, I could do what he did in far fewer hours!

The take-away: It's not whether someone is working where you can see them, it's whether they are getting the actual work needed done!

There is a lack of clear expectations and deliverables.

I think some hiring managers and business owners are resistant to remote hires because they do not have clear expectations and deliverables specified in advance. They don’t work from a business plan and do not know what they want, beyond the day to day or weekly items. Therefore, they cannot possibly accurately convey this to an employee and they most definitely cannot track and assess the performance!  

If you want assistance on hiring 

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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Aspiring Real Estate Investors: Should You Rent or Sell Your Home

If you aspire to be a real estate investor, one of the best ways to start is to either rent your existing home or sell your home and use some of the proceeds to buy a rental property. "Starting small" like this allows you time to learn about the real estate market in your community or the community in which you want to invest. With the more properties you buy and with different types of properties or a wider geographic span, you will encounter more problems that can rapidly multiply if you do not know how to handle them. Starting small enables you to learn at a pace at which you can internalize what you learn.

snapshot of Legaltemplate website
Capture of the Legaltemplates' website.

One article resource to check out is "Should You Rent or Sell Your Home", available at . This article discusses the pros and cons of both from different vantage points, including that of investment. If sell or rent is a question you've been mulling over, read this article to help you make the decision. In addition, I am quoted in it.

Here's an excerpt of that quote. This is relevant only if you DO decide to rent: "My philosophy is to screen well. Furthermore, I document everything and request the tenant’s signature whenever possible."

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