More and more states are permitting marijuana use under certain circumstances. As a result, business owners are questioning how these new guidelines impact their workplaces. Can you have a policy forbidding marijuana use? Can you terminate an employee who tests positive? Let’s consider these and other pressing issues in more detail.
States Legalizing Marijuana
Currently, 33 states have passed laws legalizing marijuana in specific situations. It’s important to note that although these state laws have passed, not all of them have gone into effect.
Most of the legislation allows for limited use of medical marijuana. However, the District of Columbia and 11 states have adopted laws legalizing marijuana for recreational use. These states include: (more…)
After a successful career as a pharmacist, Walter Moore should be playing a round of golf right about now. But you won’t find him on the greens, decked out in Titleist apparel and celebrating retirement with a victory cigar. Instead, he’ll go to work on Monday, put on his white coat and spend his morning filling prescriptions behind the counter at his pharmacy.
“I was retired for seven years and I would look back on my time as a pharmacist and see how much I took it for granted,” Moore, 70, said. “I’ve got a new outlook on life.”
For many, retirement is something to look forward to. After all, isn’t the American dream enjoying the fruits of your labor in your later years after a prosperous career? For Moore, retirement was pleasant, but ultimately felt hollow.
“You have to find something to do with your life. I just assume keep working and take chances,” Moore said. “I’m so grateful that I’m a pharmacist. I got tired of saying I used to be one. Now that I’m back, I really appreciate every customer who comes through the door. It’s been energizing to come back to work.” (more…)
Infinite Wellness Integrative Medical Center owner Dr. Ryan Cleland worked with the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for the Metro East at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville to successfully open his newest wellness center in Glen Carbon.
Cleland has been in the medical and health industry for 13 years and has run a private chiropractic practice for 11 of those years. SBDC Director Jo Ann DiMaggio May assisted Cleland in polishing his business plan and cash flow projections to introduce Infinite Wellness to a lender.
Cleland is motivated by helping people find natural ways to live their best lives through nutrition, safe pain relief and tissue regeneration, bioidentical hormone therapies, anti-aging science, weight loss, proper joint and spinal biomechanics, and more. (more…)
According to a Quickbooks report from earlier this year, “61% of small businesses regularly struggle with cash flow.”
Even if your business is profitable, you can be at risk of falling into financial demise. How? Because if you don’t have enough liquid cash on hand to meet the myriad of current and near-term expenses that come with owning a small business, it can be nearly impossible to keep your operation afloat.
What is cash flow?
Cash flow is essentially the cycle of funds going in and out of your business from operations, investing, and financing activities. It’s the amount of liquid cash that you have at your disposal at a given time. Your business can either be cash flow positive, or cash flow negative. (more…)
If you live in Vermont and appreciate good beer, then you’re probably familiar with Lawson’s Finest Liquids. Last fall the company celebrated the grand opening of its 80-seat taproom, retail store, and 30-barrel production facility in Waitsfield. What you might not know is that 11 years ago, this thriving Vermont-based business was simply one man’s hobby.
“I have had a passion for beer and brewing since discovering the joy of home brewing in college, as a student at the University of Vermont,” company founder Sean Lawson said. He homebrewed for about 20 years before friends and family finally persuaded him to begin selling his product to the public. In 2008, Sean and his wife Karen launched Lawson’s Finest Liquids out of a small outbuilding next to their house.
They started out as a one-barrel nanobrewery, and in 2011 ramped up to a seven-barrel microbrewery. This is when the owners reached out to the Vermont Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC) for assistance with their business plan and advice on financing their capital expansion. (more…)
No matter how smart you are or how great your product may be, your business needs one very important ingredient if it’s going to thrive — the right equipment. The right equipment can help optimize performance and take your business to the next level, but it might be out of reach.
Thankfully, an equipment lease may be able to help you get the specialized machinery or technology your company needs now, even if you don’t have all the money you need to pay for ownership of the equipment up front or you’re not interested in equipment loans.
With an equipment lease, you get the right to use the equipment while you’re making monthly payments to a leasing company or financial institution.
What is an Equipment Lease?
Essentially, equipment leasing can be viewed as an alternative form of small business financing — most notably equipment loans. It’s a way to help you get what your business needs now with less money out of your pocket on the front end. However, you’ll generally need a decent personal credit score to qualify for the most attractive rates and terms. (more…)
Katie Giesbrecht was working as a barista for Double Shot Donuts when the owners of the shop asked Katie and her husband if they would be interested in buying the business. At the time, Katie and Dean were both looking for new opportunities and decided to consider the offer.
They spent seven months working side by side with the previous owners, learning the business operations and working with the Idaho SBDC before the sale of the business went through. In August, 2017, the Giesbrechts reopened the business as Amazing Glaze Donuts.
When asked what makes Amazing Glaze Donuts different than other donuts in the marketplace, Katie and Dean both agree: it’s the recipe. The proprietary recipe includes real Idaho potatoes. “It’s a big part of what we bought when we purchased the business,” said Dean. Katie and Dean both spent time tasting as many donuts as they could before purchasing the business. “We tried everything from vegan to whole wheat. Nothing tastes as good as these.” (more…)
Coming up with an effective marketing strategy is all about what works for you and what does not. Whether you are a big or small business owner, you have to come up with a plan that will suit your needs and budget.
The first step to doing so is learning the market trends. We are in a competitive world, especially in the B2B market, and that is why you have to do all you can to stay up-to-date with the trends. It helps you maximize your selling power and stay ahead of competitors.
We take a look at the leading B2B marketing trends to look out for this year to help your business grow and optimize leads.
Account-based B2B marketing
This marketing strategy has been in existence for years, but with the rise of digital marketing channels, most B2B companies are now shifting back to account-based marketing. Time changes are making it hard and super expensive for businesses to market and reach their target customers on digital marketing platforms. (more…)
Koble is thrilled to announce the launch of its web app for Koble 2.0. The web app brings the ability to search for over 11 million companies in 30 categories, to an SMB or corporate buyer’s desktop.
The web app features Koble Pages – smaller than a website and larger than a listing – which are SEO optmized, and allow for businesses to gain unrivaled visibility online. Businesses can now own a company page which is optimized for search engines with Koble Pages, which are free. With nearly half of US small businesses without a website, owning a Koble page makes a website accessible to every SMB, without having any technical know-how.
Training your staff on essential topics helps create a safe, respectful and productive workplace. There are two types of training: recommended and required. Let’s look at some important areas of training every business owner should consider implementing.
New Employee Orientation
Training should start on an employee’s first day. Orientation helps new hires get acclimated to your business and understand your company culture. Important topics to cover include:
Goals and expectations, including job responsibilities
Compensation and benefits, including pay dates, payment options (e.g., direct deposit), health insurance and other benefits
Work hours, including lunch/break times, as well as clock-in, clock-out procedures for non-exempt employees
Code of conduct, including your company values, customer interaction, dress code and other expectations
Technology policies and procedures, including how to access email, your social media policy and consequences for abusing company technology
Harassment and discrimination, including the different types of harassment, specific examples of inappropriate behavior and how to report a claim