How Do You Really Make Money Playing Golf With Your Friends

Serious business people can also have fun doing something they enjoy, like playing golf, to generate income. Here are a few tips on how to make money with a game of golf.

Generate leads

Recreational activities and sports event are often part of business culture around the globe. Golf is especially popular, as it has universal appeal and is enjoyed by many business people individually and in groups. Taking a prospective client golfing can help to establish a comfortable relationship and encourage the exchange of ideas that may lay the foundation for a new business relationship. Even if a golf buddy does not immediately become a client, he or she might contact you in the future or make a valuable referral to other prospective clients.

Cultivate partnerships

Golfing with industry competitors and associates can lay the groundwork to expand networking opportunities. Casual “shop talk” often leads to enhanced understanding of and appreciation for colleagues who may be suitable partners for future projects and joint ventures. Hours spent together while relaxing and having fun creates an enjoyable environment without pressure or stress where valuable ideas can be discussed.

Support fundraisers

Golf outings are a renowned fundraising opportunity that can prove beneficial in a couple of ways. Companies often sponsor golf leagues or golf teams comprising employees and sometimes clients to raise money for a charitable community cause. This contributes to a positive public image and keeps the company in the forefront of people’s minds so they are likely to contact the company when that service is needed. Another fundraising benefit comes from meeting other company teams and getting to know those who may become allies in future fundraising efforts or in general business associations.

It is not always easy to have fun on the job, but golf is an activity that gets people excited and often enhances professional relationships.

Using LinkedIn To Get More Sales

LinkedIn is a professional social network that people use to try to connect with others within their area of interests. It is actually a very popular way for people to find out about potential job openings or simply about what other people in their work field are doing.
There are ways to use this social network to boost your own sales. You can treat it as your own personal place to make more sales and build up your customer base. You may just be surprised by how many people out there are clamoring for the products you want to pitch to them.

Leave The Cold Calling Behind
One of the nicest aspects of using LinkedIn for your own business purposes is that you do not have to make those dreadful cold calls anymore. For one thing, most people do not answer calls from numbers they do not recognize anymore. They just send it to voicemail or ignore it completely. Besides that, even the people you do get to answer are often not interested in what you are pitching to them.
This is yet another reason to love LinkedIn. They help you connect just to those who will likely have a legitimate interest in what you are serving up to them. They want to hear about your products because you have looked to see who you can best target for your message.

Figure Out What Other Companies Are Doing
Yet another way to boost your sales is to look at what the competition is doing to figure out what you could do better as well. Customers are out there, and everyone is competing against you. If you allow the competition to continue to simply do whatever they want to do with customers, you will just continue to fall behind. Learn what your competitors are doing so that you are a step ahead of them.

Make Professional Connections
The final benefit of LinkedIn is to connect with others as professional contacts within your industry. Just like individuals use LinkedIn to make new connections, so too can you use it to make business connections that will help expand your business empire.

How to Hire Your First Employee

When running a business, one of the most important aspects of having success is the ability to hire qualified workers. There are many business owners who wrongly assume that hiring workers is an easy process. However, in the current economic climate, hiring quality workers is difficult. There are many companies that are having trouble filling open positions.
When hiring your first employee, you need to think about the future of your business. Hiring your first employee can be a difficult process for many reasons. When hiring someone, you need to think about the future culture of your company. This is one of the most critical elements of success when growing a company.

Work Experience
One of the most important variables to consider in a job candidate is applicable work experience in the field. However, work experience should not be required to fill an open position. Many qualified and motivated workers have work experience in other industries.
Some business owners wrongly assume that the most experienced worker is also the best worker. This is the wrong approach to take. You need to look at how well the person would fit into the company’s future. If you want to grow the company rapidly, you are going to hire additional employees in the future. It is more important to get someone who is a fit with your culture than to get someone who has experience.

Attitude
There are several personal attributes that you simply cannot teach to others. One of these attributes is a positive attitude. There are many people who have a bad attitude and it impacts their work performance. This is something that you should be able to find at the initial interview stage. You should ask the prospective employee about their goals for the future. During this time, you should be able to assess how positive they are about life. No one wants to work with an employee who is constantly negative.
Hiring an employee is a critical step for any company. If you want to run a successful business, you need to spend an appropriate amount of time in the process.

Not Having Enough Time is the Symptom, Rather than the Cause of Your Business Challenges

Being a business owner is an exciting experience for both budding and thriving entrepreneurs. Sometimes, however, there are a few bumps on the road to success. Whether you feel that you lack time to invest in your business or you feel that you invest too much time for it to not be thriving, there are a few factors that could help you understand ways your business could improve.

Poor Scheduling
What’s your schedule like? Do you take time each month to schedule your monthly, weekly, and daily business goals? Not having a written plan could hinder your business from growing as quickly as you’d like.
A set schedule and success go hand in hand. When you’re making a schedule, you’re deciding your work hours. Remember that no work could mean no pay. Allow yourself time for your family, yourself, and other things that matter, but set aside strict times that are dedicated solely to growing your business, and stick to that schedule religiously.

Poor Planning
Perhaps you do schedule time to work your business. If you still feel that you aren’t getting much accomplished, chances are you didn’t set attainable business goals.
Written goals remind us of our tasks for the day. Simply put, when you’re writing your goals, you are writing a to-do list. It is a good idea to write out goals for the entire month. If you don’t feel that you can think that far ahead, however, you can start by writing weekly goals. Weekly goals are especially helpful if your business is new and hasn’t yet started booming.

Poor Execution
So you’ve written out a work schedule as well as tasks to accomplish daily. However, business still isn’t progressing as well as it could. When you’ve perfected the strategies of scheduling and planning, the next factor to look at is execution.
When you could meet your goals a little better, you have to discover ways that will help you and your staff work a little smarter. Ensure that everyone’s task is tailored to his particular skill set, implement steps that will make every worker more efficient, and learn easier, quicker of completing tasks. Taking these steps makes for a more efficient workforce, an easier workload, and will probably leave you with more time to brainstorm new business activities.

Not having enough time to work your business isn’t always the problem. Sometimes, we all just have to learn how to manage our time, our staff, or our daily goals. Proper execution, coupled with scheduling and planning, will help you to be well on your way to owning a more thriving business.

Learning from Companies on the Inc 5000 List

When running a company, one of the best ways to have success in the future is to emulate successful companies. There are many examples of companies that have done a great job of growing sales and profits over the years. There are numerous things that business owners can learn from companies that are growing rapidly. As a general rule, most of these companies share similar traits.

Rapid Growth
If you want to have success as a business owner, you need to grow your company rapidly. There are many people who struggle to grow their company once it gets started. You need to have a vision for how your company is going to look many years from now. Some business owners wrongly assume that the business will grow over time no matter what. You have to be intentional about your business plans if you want to have success in this area.

Financial Planning
Some business owners take on a lot of debt when they get started. Although some business debt is not a bad thing, there are many people who end up getting stuck with lots of debt. This is a major issue for various reasons.
High debt levels tend to restrict your ability to grow in the future. A lack of cash flow is one of the biggest financial issues that any business leader has to deal with. In addition, high debt levels can increase your stress. No one wants to worry about making debt payments because they borrowed too much money at one time. If you decide to borrow money, make sure to have a plan to pay the loans back in a timely manner.

Focus on Goals
Another common characteristic of successful business leaders is that they are always focused on their goals. If you do not have goals for your business, you are going to have a tough time having success in any area. Before the new year, write down some measurable goals that you want to accomplish with your company and will probably leave you with more time to brainstorm new business activities.
Not having enough time to work your business isn’t always the problem. Sometimes, we all just have to learn how to manage our time, our staff, or our daily goals. Proper execution, coupled with scheduling and planning, will help you to be well on your way to owning a more thriving business.

The One Thing You Absolutely Must Change For Your Business For This Year

The dawning of a new year is upon us, and this is a critical time when many people review what they have been doing in their personal and business lives. They take stock of how things have been going, and how they can stand to improve. It is a good idea to go through this mental exercise from time to time to ensure that you are not overlooking critical details that could bring about failure.

One thing worth changing this year in your business if you can change nothing else is how you conduct certain processes. That is to say that you have to take a look around and see if you are doing things because they are actually the most efficient, or simply the most comfortable.

A lot of people are afraid of change deep down. They don’t particularly like to admit it, but it does scare them a little to consider what it might mean if they altered this process or that to make room for something new. Every time someone thinks like that, they are costing their business money and productivity.

Survey the business around you and see if there are areas in which you could stand to improve. For example, you might want to outsource your payroll department or cut back on the number of corporate outings. Things big and small can all add up to the way that the books are balanced at the end of the quarter and the end of the year. You may be flushing money down the drain because you are unwilling to leave your comfort zone even a little bit.

There is only so much time in every day, so why waste it doing things the old way when they are not working out for you as well as you would have hoped?

Consider straightening up your back and making so long overdue changes to reshape your business in a way that makes it as efficient as possible.

Why Time Management Is Critical To A Small Business Person

Time managementAs a small business owner you’ve undoubtedly been in a position where it feels like there aren’t enough hours in a day. That’s where time management comes into play.

Great time management skills are essential to running a small business. A larger corporation may have the luxury of time, but not practicing sound time management can make or break small businesses.

Here are some reasons time management is vital.

Do More With Less Effort

It may sound counter-productive – accomplishing more with less energy expended – but by taking control of your time your focus improves. With increased focus comes better efficiency as you aren’t easily distracted, and you’re better able to maintain momentum. You’ll complete tasks more quickly, and the day will seem to fly by.

Time Is Limited

We each have the same amount of time available to us each day – 24 hours. To be more effective, you have to find a way to better manage this valuable, but limited, resource. Prioritizing and putting first things first is one way to address how you’re going to fill those hours.

Better Decision Making

When you’re pressed for time and have to make a decision quickly you’re more apt to come up with a quick answer before having thought the issue through. But when you’ve managed your time, you’re less stressed and more able to make decisions clearly without feeling like you must rush through the process.

Reduce Stress

The stress of always feeling pressed for time is very real and a potential health hazard. Moreover, it only increases if another (often inevitable) task is put on your plate as you’re rushing to finish the one you’re currently on. But when you’ve managed your time, you don’t have to subject yourself to that level of stress. You’ll give yourself enough time to meet a deadline without worrying about having to complete it in the last minute.

Dealing With Procrastination/Interruptions

Not practicing good time management on a daily basis leads to procrastination and finding other reasons to put off an important task. Additionally, you come to accept that interruptions are just part of the day, rather than something that can be greatly reduced by setting aside time for each task.

Taking Advantage of Opportunities

New and exciting opportunities will inevitably arise for your small business as you move forward. The key is being able to take the time to take advantage of them. You’ll also have the time to learn more about your industry and keep better track of what your competitors are doing.

Free Time Is Crucial

It’s important to unwind, but finding time for it can be difficult when you’ve poorly managed your time. Having good time management skills will help you find that time. Yes, you’re still busy, but you’re getting more done with the time you have.

How to Manage Stress Through Relaxation Strategies

Stress Relax Computer Keys

Managing your own small business can be as stressful as it is rewarding, but stress itself can be managed through use of “relaxation strategies” that will help you to face the daily grind with calmness and poise. If stress is left unchecked and allowed to fester and grow, it can have serious detrimental effects on your health besides making you irritable with your staff and less than efficient at your managerial duties. Below, we offer 5 suggestions as to how you can relax both body and mind to reduce stress and increase productivity:

  1. Breathe Deeply: Take a few minutes several times day to stop and “take a breather.” That is, literally sit down in a comfortable chair or, if possible, lie down on a bed, and engage in deep-breathing exercises. Slowly fill up your lungs, breathing in through the nose, and then release the air through your mouth in a steady, continuous motion. Count to 10 in the process: from 1 to 5 breathing in and from 6 to 10 breathing out.
  2. Wear Loose-fitting Clothing: If your clothes are too tight, “loosen up,” or it will hinder the blood circulation in your body and make it harder for you to relax. In fact, various health conditions can also arise, in part, from too-tight clothing: varicose veins, poor upper body breathing, back aches, and indigestion.
  3. Do Muscle-relaxing Exercises: If your muscles feel somewhat cramped and tense, “stretch out” using various simple exercises that target specific areas of your body. Lower your chin to your chest and back up again, slowly, to exercise your neck. Shrug your shoulders up toward your ears and then move them in small circles, both clockwise and counterclockwise, to relax shoulder muscles. Do wall stretches to loosen up leg muscles, lift small dumbbells to exercise your arms, and relax wrists by curling your hands up toward your body for a few moments at a time.
  4. Avoid Last-minute Decisions: Disorganization leads to chaos, and chaos leads to stress. For every major aspect of your day, you should “plan ahead” to foster organization and orderliness. Schedules, budgets, work-flow charts, chains-of-command, and some basic protocols are not your enemies- they establish routines that allow you to avoid stressful last-minute decisions because you have already decided many things well in advance.
  5. Maintain a Focused Mind: Do what you can to separate your personal and business activities into distinct time slots and to work through your list of tasks in a one-thing-at-a-time manner. Avoid distractions until its time for a short, 5-minute break. The rest of the time, “stay focused” on the task at hand until it is completed: this will give you a sense of accomplishment that will encourage you as you move on to the next order of business.

Remember to do 5 things- take a breather, loosen up, stretch out, plan ahead, and stay focused, and both you and your business will benefit. Reducing stress levels will boost your productivity and make you feel better at the same time.

What Are the Characteristics of an Entrepreneur?

EntrepreneurBeing an entrepreneur may technically require nothing more than that you have an idea you believe in strongly and that you make an attempt to turn that idea into a profitable venture. Being a successful entrepreneur, however, will require, among other things, a certain set of characteristics that tend toward success. Conducting an honest self assessment as to how

many of these desirable characteristics you possess will put you in a position to make your new business start-up as successful as possible.

Five characteristics that can help you to maximize the success of your entrepreneurial pursuits are as follows:

1. A Willingness to Learn From Others

When low demand, economic stagnation, and unfair practices of competitors begin to push down your bottom line, you may find yourself unsure of how to respond. You may have great business talent and enough accumulated knowledge to come up with some possibilities, but it is always wise to check your ideas against the advice of those more experienced than yourself.

2. The Impulse to Plan Ahead

Gathering the resources to start a new business and then managing it well enough, long enough to meet or exceed your original goals requires a well-thought-out business plan. You should know your product, your market, and the benchmarks by which you will measure success. You will also need to be familiar with the details involved or, at least, hire a trustworthy manager who can attend to them while you focus on the overall direction of your company.

3. Flexibility and Adaptability

Planning is critical, but there is also a need to “counter-balance” your plans with a willingness to be flexible. If customer feedback and the dynamics of the market are ignored in the name of “sticking to the plan,” it will hurt your business and could even end it. Furthermore, you cannot simply “turn static” after an initial adaptation to the needs of the market. Since market conditions are constantly changing, there is a need for constant adaptation.

4. An Ability to Work With Money

In the early days of a new business, keeping cash-flow positive is something of a balancing act that requires the wisest possible use of a limited amount of capital. Thus, an entrepreneur must possess some “financial intuition” and a an ability to budget for both present and future obligations. He must also keep enough of a cash reserve to deal with emergencies, which will inevitably arise.

5. A Skill for “Reasoned Risk-Taking”

Every entrepreneur must take risks in order to have a chance to reap corresponding rewards. Reckless risk-taking done simply “for risk-taking’s sake,” however, is likely to ruin your business. Risks must be weighed against the potential pay-off, the odds of success, and the availability of other options.

Finally, note that even with a good idea, hard work, and wise business moves, failure is not.

100% avoidable. There are times when the best option is to “cut your losses” and re-invest in another entrepreneurial venture that may prove to be more successful.

7 Great Quotes About Revenue Growth

Chart of revenue growth drawn with chalk on a chalkboard

Great quotes are great for business owners because they constitute three things at once: good insight, practical advice, and memorable wording. With the voluminous literature on revenue growth in a business context and the seemingly endless array of new voices that want to be heard, we can only select 7 great quotes out of the vast ocean of quotations available.

Below, we have chosen 7 quotes that cover multiple aspects of revenue growth and then given brief explanations following each quote:

  1. By author Tim Cook: “Companies that get confused…think their goal is revenue.” Cook goes on to say we should focus on things that lead to revenue rather than simply on revenue itself. While this might seem a too-fine distinction, it does point out strongly that, while a business exists for profit from one side of the equation, it exists to render a product or service from the other vantage point. Thus, serving the customer well will naturally lead to revenue growth.
  2. By Google co-founder Larry Page: Revenue is the engine that funds all our innovation. Without revenue, nothing will happen- it will remain a mere idea. This quote is somewhat akin to the old saying, “It takes money to make money,” and points out the importance of investment capital.
  3. Also by Larry Page: Our goal is long term growth in revenue…so we invest aggressively in future innovation while tightly managing our short term costs. Here, we see the importance of not using all of our revenue on immediate business needs but investing in the future.
  4. GE’s CEO, Jeff Immelt, said: People ought to invest in us because they like our company and the way they run it. To increase revenues by gaining business investors, you need to show management skills and have a product/service that others can believe in as much as you do.
  5. Australian author, columnist, and t.v. host (general financial “guru”), Paul Clitheroe, tells us: It’s not what you earn, it’s what you spend. One way to gain “new” revenue is by spending less of the old revenue.
  6. Along a similar line as the above-given quote, we hear from author Peter Orszag: A deficit reflects an imbalance between spending and revenue…narrowing it requires acting on one, the other, or both. Either revenue directly increases, spending diminishes, or a combination of both- there is no other way to increase revenue overall aside from borrowing or receiving a gift.
  7. On a more “charitable” note, listen to business author Carlos Helu, one of the richest men in all Mexico: The better off you are, the more responsibility you have for helping others. Many businesses give generously to help the poor. When potential clients know of such generosity, they sometimes patronize your business for this very reason, which in turn, increases revenue.