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3 Helpful Resources for California entrepreneurs

by Guest Author 24 October 2017 08:44

Fed up with crazy hours, unreasonable bosses, or abysmal salaries? Have a great idea for a new business but aren't sure how to get it off the ground? Starting a business in Northern California isn't as complicated as you might think. In fact, the core steps are very straightforward. It is vital, however, that you do it properly.

Unless they're professionals, getting advice for starting a business from your neighbor's best friend's gardener or your long lost auntie from New York is not the right way to go. You need solid information you can count on -- not just an encouraging pat on the back and a suggestion to to immediately quit your day job.

Federal Resources

The Small Business Administration is the best place to start when you're in need of solid, up-to-date business guidance. For nearly 65 years, the SBA has pursued a mission to deliver loans, contracts, and counseling to America's small business community. Established in 1953, the SBA describes its primary functions as:

  • Providing capital for established businesses and start ups
  • Education, training, and technical assistance to facilitate entrepreneurial development
  • Small business advocacy

State Resources

Your next stop for gathering reliable information on starting a business is California's Secretary of State's website. California's SOS's website is your one-stop shop for registering and licensing your business with the state, and includes forms to complete as well as a mechanism for paying associated fees.

State resources for financing your business are just a click away at California's Business Investment Services website. California's official business portal is another invaluable resource for entrepreneurs where you will find everything from financial and permit assistance to quick start guides for expanding an existing business.

Local Resources

In addition to federal and state resources, you may also want to take advantage of local business groups such as chambers of commerce or business improvement district organizations. You will find a handy list of contact information for local chambers of commerce here at the CalChamber website's official directory listing.

A Business Owner's Guide to Attracting Top Talent

by Guest Author 10 October 2017 09:15

One of the biggest challenges for any business owner is finding the right candidates to bring on board. If you have open positions you're trying to fill or you plan to do some hiring in the future, keep these suggestions in mind. They'll help you attract high-quality employees who can contribute to your bottom line.

Ask for referrals. Knowing more about a candidate increases your chances of making a smart decision, and finding someone who will fit in with your company culture. Offer incentives for current employees to make referrals. Send your job announcements to colleagues asking for leads, and be generous about doing the same for them.

Tweak your job description. Is your advertisement boring? Remember that you're selling the position, not just describing it. Know your audience, and stress what you have to offer.

Consider hiring a recruitment agency. Maybe you're not getting enough qualified candidates. A recruitment agency can be worth the fees they charge if they help you fill difficult positions.

Offer competitive compensation. Is your starting salary in line with comparable openings? Check your benefits too as many candidates will appreciate policies such as generous leave and training opportunities.

Remember soft skills. Whatever the position, you also need to focus on communication and interpersonal skills. Is this someone you'll enjoy working with, and will they be effective dealing with clients?

Always be looking. Don’t wait until you have a vacancy to think about recruitment. Keep your eyes open for promising talent at every networking event or speaking engagement you go to.

Hiring and retaining high-caliber employees is the key to business success. Using strategies that develop your reputation as a great employer puts you on the path to assembling an effective team.

Time To Consider a Larger Space For Your Business

by Guest Author 5 October 2017 11:15

As a shop owner, there are times when you need to consider that the location you are currently in is not good enough for you. Though you may not want to move your whole business, it might just be what you and your business needs.

You shouldn’t move just to move. However, there are times when you may need a larger space for your business.

  • More retail product. If you are thinking about expanding your business by selling more product, you may need more room to do so. Most retail businesses start out small and then gradually expand until they are selling everything that they want to.
  • Change of direction. You may also find your business growing in a different direction and you need a second store to cater to that crowd. If that happens, you may want to have two different stores or look for a space where they can be connected.
  • More employees. After you start to hire employees, you may need a bigger space, especially if some of them need to have their own office space. You might also want to think about having a break room for your employees to take time to relax. This will lead to much happier employees if they can get comfortable and unwind during breaks.
  • Better location. After you have been in business for a while, you might finally be able to afford the shop that you have always wanted! Treat this as a dream come true because you deserve it.

Though you may not want to move your business, there are times when it is necessary. Most people buy or lease a smaller location until they are able to afford the one that they really want (or need). When this happens, you should be proud of yourself that you have grown your business so much that you need a larger space.

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