By Gerri Detweiler –
“Do Schools Kill Creativity?” is one of the most popular TED Talks of all time. In his entertaining and provocative presentation, Sir Ken Robinson says (referring largely to the state of education today) that “..if you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original. And by the time they get to be adults, most kids have lost that capacity. They have become frightened of being wrong.”
Robinson doesn’t address entrepreneurship directly in his talk, but plenty of other people question whether our educational system helps prepare students to run their own businesses, often against the backdrop of stories like that of Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg dropping out of college to start their businesses.
As one example, Andrew Yang wrote in Forbes, “Schools don’t tolerate failure. Our students can’t accept it. The best entrepreneurship course would give everyone who enrolls an F. Whoever takes it probably has the makings of a decent entrepreneur.”
He’s referring specifically to university-level entrepreneurship education programs, and goes on to say: “The best programs push students out of the classroom, get business people with real problems, and give strong teams an actual chance to launch and operate with access to real angel investors. Go out and get some customers.” (more…)
By Gerri Detweiler –
What qualities come to mind when you think of those who build great amounts of wealth? Disciplined, hard-working, smart — perhaps even a bit ruthless?
You may be surprised to learn that there is another trait that may help you build wealth: optimism. Tom Corley devoted several years to studying the habits of the rich versus the poor, which he has shared in his best-selling book, Rich Habits: The Daily Habits of Successful Individuals. Among the many habits he studied, he found the rich were more likely to be optimistic.
“Sixty-seven percent of the self-made millionaires in my study forged the habit of being positive and upbeat. A positive, mental outlook is critical to overcoming problems, obstacles, pitfalls, mistakes and failures,” he says. “Staying positive is a critical component to becoming wealthy. Positivity is like a radar in search of solutions to problems. Thus, positive thinkers are able to see solutions, where negative people see only problems,” he adds. (more…)
By Jennifer Lobb –
Running a business is time-consuming work, and as a new business owner, time is exceedingly hard to come by. Though you may not be able to add an extra hour (or minute, for that matter) to your day, there are ways you can capitalize on, and make the most of, the time you do have. By following the seven tips below, you’ll be able to take charge of your day and manage your time in a way that improves both your productivity and state of mind.
1. List & Define Your Tasks & Goals
When thinking about time and how to better manage it, there are two dominating categories of obligations and to-dos and your list: operational tasks and business goals. Tasks are those mundane-yet-import requirements that happen daily, weekly or monthly, without fail.
Emails, meetings, bills, inventory, etc. all account for the tasks that must be completed to keep a business up and running. On the other hand, things like new projects, sales incentives, marketing initiatives, hiring and expansion activities, etc. all represent goals that are important to business success and growth. (more…)
By Linda McMahon, SBA Administrator –
National Small Business Week shines a spotlight on our nation’s 30 million small businesses. Through awards ceremonies, media interviews and community events, we honor entrepreneurs whose achievements stand out. As an entrepreneur myself, I know the hard work that goes into starting and building a small business – efforts that don’t often get the attention they deserve.
Honorees in this week’s spotlight do not cast a shadow that dims the efforts of others; rather they serve as a beacon – to competitors, up-and-comers and communities as a whole. They show what is possible. They are innovators and problem solvers, creating products and services that are better, smarter or more efficient than what came before. They are risk takers. And through their success, they inspire others to dream and to create small businesses of their own.
Small businesses contribute so much to our communities and economy. They create two out of every three net new jobs in the private sector. More than half of all Americans either work for or own a small business. Entrepreneurs are not only making a living for themselves, they are making their neighborhoods vibrant places to live and work and contributing to our nation’s economic strength. (more…)
By Gerri Detweiler –
After surviving several tumultuous business partnerships, Susan Nilon has learned to be more skeptical and cautious. In the past, she admits she was so excited about business possibilities that she “didn’t pay attention to red flags.”
She and her current business partner in a legal research firm, De Novo Law Services, not only have a formal partnership agreement, they’ve taken it one step further. She created an addendum to the agreement “writing out 10 steps on how to survive our partnership,” she says. This document spells out the things that are not normally called out in a contract, like how to handle disputes and what to do when the other partner is not pulling their weight.
Business partnerships can bring together individuals whose complementary skills and experience can help the venture succeed. And sometimes a partner can contribute valuable resources — including money — to help fund the business. But these arrangements can also result in headaches or heartache. (more…)