Susan Wojcicki: CEO of YouTube and Female Powerhouse

Silicon Valley has a problem with women. There aren’t enough of them. Despite more women than ever earning college degrees and entering the workforce, just 26% of computing operations jobs in the U.S. get filled by women. In most of Europe, Asia, and Africa, those numbers look even more dismal. Social scientists, economists, and tech gurus alike wonder why. Is it the “pinkification” of girls — the idea that girls are introduced to gender-specific roles at an early age? Is it the insider network culture of technology firms? Do many women just not enjoy STEM fields? Do they find working in these fields incompatible with other life goals? Experts are still learning what will help rectify the gender imbalance in global technology firms. But one woman is already serving as a female powerhouse in Silicon Valley, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki. Not only does Wojcicki serve as the head of the …

Susan Wojcicki: CEO of YouTube and Female Powerhouse

19 Great Ways to Advertise Your Business with No Money

Right after starting a new small business, funds can be tight. Payroll, office space, taxes, and production can eat into capital. And that’s if you’re lucky enough to have a capital investment. If you are like many entrepreneurs, you’re not worried about investors; you’re bootstrapping your business on a shoe string. There’s no way you have $100,000 lying around to conduct a direct mail campaign (and that’s what it often costs, by the way). Newspaper ads, telemarketing, billboards, and television commercials can also run six figures each. And what’s worse is that newspapers, landlines, and traditional TV are all being replaced by websites, cell phones, and streaming video. Even low-cost awareness building activities can eat up between $15,000 and $75,000 of your annual budget. For a small business, that’s a lot of money. In this context, marketing or advertising can get short shrift. So what’s a small business owner to …

19 Great Ways to Advertise Your Business with No Money

Why You Need to Hire Your First Employee as Soon as Possible

Hiring your first employee is a major step in your new life as a small business owner. The hire comes with all kinds of positive vibes. Having an extra pair of hands to manage the workflow can feel like a huge relief. And besides, bringing on the first member of a team can make your small business seem more like a genuine company and less like a hobby job. No matter how exciting it is to hire your first employee, though, taking a significant decision like that requires a thoughtful approach. Whom should you hire? What position needs filling? How do you attract the right person? What does it cost to hire a new employee? And when should you bring on your first team member? Once you start a business, you’re a bona fide entrepreneur, and it’s up to you to find out the answers to all these questions, act …

Why You Need to Hire Your First Employee as Soon as Possible

How to Use Your Existing Phones with a Virtual Phone System

Entrepreneurs have a lot of questions on their minds, especially when starting out or scaling up. How will I make payroll? How do I advertise my business? Is my product properly positioned in the market? Even, what’s the best phone system for my business? We’ve been entrepreneurs a long time, and we’d like to help answer some of those. Check out our blog for some great tips for new business owners to help solve the first three questions and others about getting started in business. And as far as phone systems go, well, that’s our business, so we can certainly get you started off on the right foot there, too. You should know right away that we don’t sell phones, lock you into plans, or require you set up something complicated that your employees have to spend hours fiddling with instead of doing their jobs. At Talkroute, we believe simple, …

How to Use Your Existing Phones with a Virtual Phone System

How the Co-Founders of Netflix Killed Blockbuster

The biggest fumble in the history of the media business happened in Dallas, Texas in September of 2000. Two desperate Silicon-valley entrepreneurs named Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph flew into Dallas for a meeting with John Antioco, the legendary CEO of Blockbuster. Hastings was an engineer who had botched several software startups. Randolph was a serial small business entrepreneur who made his name as a co-founder of MacWorld magazine in 1984. Less than three years earlier the two men had joined forces on a DVD rent-by-mail idea they called Netflix. By September of 2000, their new venture was looking like a bust. On track to lose $50 million that year, Hastings and Randolph’s company wasn’t an entrepreneurial David hoping to defeat a corporate Goliath. Netflix was more like an entrepreneurial Faust willing to sell its soul to the devil if it could turn a profit amidst the ongoing dot com …

How the Co-Founders of Netflix Killed Blockbuster

Tips for Managing Stress and Anxiety as a Business Owner

There are many positives that come along with running your own business. You can make your own schedule. You make all the decisions about how to spend your revenue. It’s fun to hand out business cards listing you as the founder or owner. On the flip side, making all the decisions all the time can feel overwhelming and stressful. It’s important to develop the tools to handle stress and anxiety as a business owner. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that seventy percent of adults encounter stress or anxiety every day. Most of these adults say the stress interferes with their lives. Similarly, most business owners would likely report that stress has a negative impact. The problem with being afflicted with burnout when you’re a business owner is that you can’t exactly stop and smell the flowers for a while, and then come back when you’re refreshed and …

Tips for Managing Stress and Anxiety as a Business Owner

You Probably Won’t Make a Profit Your First Year & That’s Ok

A first-time entrepreneur experiences plenty of exciting first-time milestones, but few match the thrill when you make your first sale. This is the moment that all of your efforts have been moving towards. You figure you’ll be in the black by the end of the year. If you’re lucky, that might be true. But it might not, and that’s okay – it’s normal not to turn a profit in your first year. Before you get discouraged, let’s make one thing very clear. Just because you take a loss doesn’t mean you’ve failed. It doesn’t even mean that you’re destined to fail eventually. Making it through your first year means you’re already ahead of the 33 percent of entrepreneurs who pack it in before their companies’ first birthdays.   Companies Take Time to Turn Profits   When you’re looking at a loss on your balance sheet, it’s easy to feel like …

You Probably Won’t Make a Profit Your First Year & That’s Ok

Why You Shouldn’t Abandon Your Business Phone Number

As a business owner, it is vital that you are always available to your clients, but you may be risking future success if you’re relying on a land-line or traditional cell phone number. Your phone number will quickly become listed in both online and offline directories. Customers may even begin to store your business number as a contact in their phones. So imagine the horror if you lost your phone number and your customers were unable to reach you. Unfortunately, this the nightmare that so many business owners find themselves living. Forward-looking business owners are turning to the services of a virtual phone system to alleviate these risks.   Incorrect Business Contact Information Negatively Impacts Consumer Behavior When it comes to positively influencing customer responses to your business, accuracy and consistency matter. In addition to ensuring your customers can get in touch with you, a business that changes contact information …

Why You Shouldn’t Abandon Your Business Phone Number

How Daymond John Changed the Entrepreneurial Game

Some people win the game of business by sticking to the rules. Other people win by changing the game. Most entrepreneurs are game changers not rule keepers. That’s why you go into business for yourself, right? You don’t fit into the gray cubicle world of corporate America so you build your own craft and launch out into the world of business. A few founders go way beyond ordinary, though, when it comes to breaking the rules and changing the game, people such as Daymond John. You might know Daymond from ABC’s hit reality business show Shark Tank. He’s the shark who started with $40 and created a $6 billion game-changing fashion empire called FUBU. Today, Daymond, a boy with dyslexia from a middle class neighborhood in Queens, boasts a personal net worth of $250 million. He didn’t earn it with an Ivy League education and a network of family friends, …

How Daymond John Changed the Entrepreneurial Game

Useful Techniques for Defining Your Brand Identity

Ask ten small business owners to give you a good definition of brand, and you’ll get 12 different answers. Branding is a slippery concept even among the best and brightest entrepreneurs. For all the chatter about the topic on business blogs, much about branding seems elusive, contradictory, impractical, or expensive. Many small business owners even think of their brand as little more than their logo and color scheme, something they paid a marketing agency to develop for them a couple of years ago but were never really sure why and then rarely used. The confusion around branding is unfortunate because the concept itself is critical to marketing, sales, and corporate culture as a whole. Let’s add a little clarity to the discussion here. In some cases, the word “brand” refers to a type of product. For example, you could say that Coca Cola owns several brands such as Sprite and …

Useful Techniques for Defining Your Brand Identity