Article of the Month
What makes a great store
The article for April is the result of a series of interviews I did of hardware stores and home centers. Writing the article was a lot of fun as I got to hear the stories of how each business made a difference in their community.
Such an effort is not limited to hardware stores and home centers. It has been my experience that independent businesses of all types in all communities are noted for taking care of those that reside in their community.
It is my hope that you enjoy reading the article as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Click on Article of the Month to read this article.
Book of the Month
by Daniel H. Pink
This is not a complete review as I have not finished reading the book.
The concept of this book intrigues me because it goes against what I have experienced. Pink says that it is not necessarily 'carrots and sticks' that work for people.
He cites examples of how repeated rewards to people for great effort does not produce better results.
This is contrary to my experiences. However, I believe that in an effort to grow as a business owner, we have to look at ideas that are different.
Click on Book Referral to see the list of small business books we have found that may be helpful to your business.
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Visit our e-ret@iler conversations, find the category of interest and post your comments, questions or best practices. You may also go directly to one of our categories by clicking on one of the links below.
Financial ManagementGeneral DiscussionMerchandising
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April 26 - Take your child to work day
In the Shay household, we have celebrated this event for many years. Our daughter would take a day off from school to join me in the business. In later years, the twins would be in the office with me and answer the phones.
It is important that our children understand and learn what it is we do in our business. As I write this, I am reminded about a letter I received several years ago. It came from a long time reader of this newsletter.
Letter from Ron of Arrow Flooring
Let me invite you to follow the link to his letter and pay very close attention to the part where Ron discusses what his children hear about the business when he comes home at the end of the day.
For a small business to continue to be a part of the landscape of any community, it is the opportunity, and responsibility, of the current owner to have a positive attitude and be able to share it with those you work with, those you live with, and those that are kind enough to consider spending their money with your business.
So, the suggestion is that you write that note to the teacher at your children's school to tell them your child is going to participate in April 26.
Why not do the same for your employees? Let them bring their children to work as well. Have a special lunch and snacks for the kids. Let them interact with your customers. Tell your customers about the event and invite them to visit your business on this special day. It could be an awesome event - for the children, your customers, and you.
April e-retailer conversation conference call
8pm eastern, Thursday, April 12, 2012
We had a great e-retailer conversation conference call for March. There was a last minute change as I received a note from Michael McCormick, a CPA from Cincinnati who asked to listen in. Instead we invited him to participate and along with our emcee, Bill Kendy, we had a call that went over an hour. The information Mike shared with all of us was great. I know there are a number of businesses that are definitely thinking about upgrading to an accountant that is more in tune with their business.
Let me invite you to follow the link below and listen, or download the recording of the call.
Let me also invite you to take a look at Michael McCormick's website. He is a specialist is working with small businesses just like yours!
Cincy Tax Coach
For the April call, Thursday, April 12 at 8pm eastern, we are hoping to have another guest for the program. We do not yet have a confirmation so we are not ready to announce the topic.
As a reminder, all conference calls are free and we provide a toll free number for participants in the US and Canada. We do so because we want to see your business succeed.
|Internet Tip of The Month
Return on Equity
Equity - It is the part of the business that belongs to the owner of the business. Sometimes it is called 'net worth'; it can also be referred to as 'stockholder's equity'.
To determine the 'your part' of the business, there is a calculation that starts with the monthly profit and loss statement (also called income statement in small business). The 'bottom line' is the net income for the business for that month. At the end of the month, that amount (positive or negative) moves to the balance sheet to become a part of the 'current income'.
The current income adds up for a year, and at the end of your fiscal year, all of the current income moves to the retained earning.
The third component of equity is the money that was initially put in to start the business. In many situations that money is referred as 'contributed capital'.
Add the current income, retained earning and contributed capital together and you have your equity. The question with this calculator is, "How well is your equity producing a return for you?"
This calculator is designed to help you determine that return. After all, you should know how much your money is earning for you!
Return on Equity Calculator
| The Power Promoting Idea of the Month
How 'bout some ice cream?
The power promoting idea of the month is best told through the story of how it happened.
A small business owner attending a church service listened attentively as a member of the youth group stood before the congregation and told of how the youth were working to raise funds for a summer project.
The business owner approached the adult leader of the youth group and offered an idea for additional fund raising.
If the youth would gather at the business on Saturday afternoon, the business owner would have a White Mountain hand crank ice cream maker and all the necessary ingredients for the youth to make some delicious ice cream. There would a tip jar, and 100% of the donations would go to the youth group.
The business owner showed the youth how to make posters and where to place them about the town. On the Saturday afternoon, the youth raised hundreds of dollars and the business saw about 400 (a lot more than the usual Saturday) customers on that afternoon.
A customer, enjoying an ice cream cone, remarked to the business owner that they thought it was nice what was being done for that youth group. 'Would you do it for the kids that are in the 4-H club?'
The answer was yes, and soon the 4-H club had a similar experience. From there, the Saturday afternoon event was repeated multiple times.
Move the story forward to today, and you will see that if your non-profit group wants to raise money with an ice cream event at this business, you had better get your request in very early as every Saturday during the season is going to be taken by some non-profit group.
Could you repeat this experience for your business?
You can find more ideas like this in our promotions books. You can order your copy by clicking on the link below; each book is only $9.95 plus postage.
Profits Plus Resource Center