Is Your Small Business Following the Rules?

You know as well as anyone else running a small business how much time and effort goes into such an operation.

With that in mind, one of the keys to success is to be sure you are following all the rules along the way.

The failure to do so can result in you losing money and even being shut down at some point if things get out of hand.

So, is your small business playing things by the book?

Make Sure You Do Not Commit a Major Mistake

In running your company by the book, here are some areas to make sure you do not mess up:

  1. Paying your taxes – It goes without saying that paying your taxes is something you can’t miss. So, have you been up to speed on paying taxes? It can be easier than you may think to make a key error when it comes to taxes. For instance, you filed late and got hit with a penalty. While the penalty may not seem all that bad, it is still money you would not have had to pay if you were on time. Another problem is when you incorrectly file your taxes. Whether the error was something you did or your tax preparer, it can lead to a possible audit. Worst of all is if you do not file for one reason or another. This can lead to a sizable fine if you are not careful. Last, be cognizant of the small business tax deductions you are eligible for. Not getting them all can mean less money in your pocket at the end of the day and more that the government gets to enjoy. Always do your best to get your small business taxes filed on time and correctly. 
  2. Track commissions – When you have a sales team, you more than likely offer commissions. That would be for their selling efforts. Be sure to properly track such commissions. By making sure the commissions are tracked and recorded, you can meet ASC 606 compliance. If you are not up to speed on this important piece of business law, now is the time to get on it. You do not want to end up behind the eight ball and playing catch up with compliance. 
  3. Workplace health – Finally, also make it a point to stay on top of health in the workplace. This is specifically for you and your employees’ healthcare needs. Do you offer health insurance? If so, make sure you have someone with the experience to oversee all the documentation and so on. The last thing you want would be billing errors and more. Also be sure to document any injuries on the job. Yes, workplace accidents are not uncommon. They can include slips and falls, auto accidents driving for the company, being hit by an object and more. While the main concern is the care the employee needs, you also want to be sure you are not opening up for a lawsuit.

As you review the rules of being a small business owner, are you confident you are meeting them?

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3 Tips on Continued Small Business Growth

Do you see your small business in a pattern of continual growth?

If you are not sure or even say no, don’t you think you need to address this matter?

By positioning your small business in the right direction, you can reap the rewards for years to come.

That being the case, where should your focus be when it comes to small business growth?

Doing what is Best for Your Small Business

In positioning you and your company for good things, hone in on these areas:

1. Being smart with money – How good of a job have you been doing when it comes to business finances? Your company can’t be all that successful if money is a continual issue. That said you want to be smart with the dollar. There may be times where you could use a little financial boost to improve your business. If this sounds like your company, where will you go for help? One thought to consider would be to apply for a revolving line of credit. If approved for that line, you can tap into those funds at a pre-approved limit when necessary. Use the money for what you find to be your most pressing needs or needs. Speaking of being smart with money, also make it a point to watch how you spend. Spending too much can be costly to your business in various ways. Look for deals and avoid the temptation all too often of using a credit card for business expenses.

2. Giving your customers what they want – You also need to focus in on great customer service. Not only does that mean serving folks when they come to you or visit online but offering them deals. Many consumers look for bargains. If you are not providing customers with discounts, you could end up losing some of those people. Finally, always take the time to get valuable feedback from your customers. See where it is you can in fact improve your offerings to them.

3. Keeping tech in in your business – It goes without saying that tech continues to evolve. As a result, you can’t afford to be left behind. Make sure you are doing all you can with technology on a regular basis. Given many folks use tech on a daily basis, you have to expect they want you to be tech-savvy. That is when it comes to running a business. There are many ways tech can help you further your business. For example, do you have a business app? Having an app can connect you with countless consumers on a 24/7 basis. That connection can lead to more sales and revenue on a continual basis. If you have a business app, it is simple for consumers to download it on their phones. When they do, they can visit your website when they want to. If you have an online store, they can buy goods or services via their phones. That is technology you do not want to miss out on.

As you assess how best to grow your small business, be sure you are doing all you can to have growth in mind.

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Upgrade Your Home without Breaking the Bank

The thought of doing upgrades to your home may scare you somewhat when it really should not.

You can do some upgrades without tearing the entire home apart or breaking the bank in the process.

With that in mind, is it time for some changes around your place?

What Changes to Make and Still Save Money?

In thinking about some different looks and a different feel to your home, here are some things to keep in mind:

1. Have a plan – Of most importance, have a plan in place for your renovation wishes. This will increase the odds of things going smoother. If you are doing things on the fly, chances are you will run into issues both with the renovations and what it costs. For one, don’t plan renovations around the holidays, especially if you plan on having folks over. It is also wise to avoid major renovations when little ones are home for an extended period of time like summer. As for finances, make sure you can afford renovations without getting in over your head.

2. Making affordable renovations – There are renovations you can make and not spend a lot. For one, is it time for some new doors? Given doors play an important part in your home in coming and going, storage and more, you want them to meet the needs. If you have a patio area or something similar, now may be the time to look at exterior glass doors. These doors offer many great qualities. This would be views, security, easy to open and close, control temps in that area of the home where they are at and more. You may also think about putting some fresh paint on those walls, cabinets and more. This can be done rather inexpensively and with little time involved. No matter the renovations you consider, try and find some ways to save money on them.

3. Doing some or much of the work on your own – How good are you when it comes to being handy around the home? If the answer is pretty good, why not save some money and do much or all the renovations on your own? This can help you avoid running up a bill for contractors and their labor costs. If you have any outside family or friends good at such renovations, ask them if they will pitch in some time and help. You can do something nice for them in return.

As you consider some changes to your home, know that you get to call the shots when you own and do not rent.

As a result, take your time to decide what it is you’d like to come up with.

You can do a bunch of renovations at once or spread things out. Doing the latter allows you to avoid having much of your home torn up all at once.

If some upgrades are the order of the day for your home, are you excited about the possibilities waiting for you?

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5 Reasons to Consider Hydroponic Gardening

There are many reasons to take up gardening. Whether it’s to plant and grow tasty food, tend to your shrubs, or have a lower environmental impact on the planet, you need to pick the right method to get the maximum benefits.

Hydroponic gardening is a popular method that grows plants without the need for soil. Instead, you will feed your plants on mineral nutrient salts that are dissolved in water. Even if you are used to growing plants traditionally in soil, here are some of the key benefits you can gain from hydroponic gardening.

Uses Less Water

Watering and gardening go hand in hand, helping to keep your plants healthy and growing correctly. What you may not realise is that you’re able to save close to 90% of the water that you would regularly use in traditional gardening if you switch to hydroponics. When you water your plants every day, most of the water runs off them, meaning they don’t get the full benefits. If you choose hydroponics, there is no worry of water running off, as it’s circulated continuously through your plant’s roots. 

Full Control

Another reason to try out hydroponic gardening is that you’re in full control of the water. This means you can experiment with various nutrients to create an easy formula for your plants, helping to keep them at their healthiest. Not only will you oversee when your plants eat, you can decide how much water they absorb. 

Improved Quality of Produce

When you grow plants hydroponically, you will find the taste and quality of your produce is enhanced. The reason for this is down to your hydroponic system as it utilises the quality of clean water and nutrients under a controlled environment without the worry of herbicides or pesticides. What’s more, hydroponics reduces the supply chain drastically, meaning your greens will taste much better when compared to those that have had to travel hundreds of miles from a farm to the supermarket. 

No Limitations

Having a hydroponic garden gives you minimal restrictions both in terms of space and location. This means you’re able to grow a much larger quantity of plants in a hydroponic setting when compared to open fields. Whether you want to grow herbs like mint or basil, or vegetables like lettuce or cauliflower, you’ll be able to grow beautiful and tasty produce all year round with hydroponic supplies from Progrow, regardless of how much room you have. 

No Pests, Weeds, or Diseases

Many pests and diseases are already born in the soil, meaning they will infest your garden from the beginning of the growing process and cause numerous challenges both mentally and financially. As there is no soil involved in a hydroponic system, you won’t have to worry about weeds, pests, or diseases wreaking havoc on your plants. 

If you want to be more eco-conscious and have healthier plants, hydroponic gardening may be the right method for you. Growing hydroponically allows you to leave your comfort zone and try something different. If you’re worried about the end result, don’t be: hydroponic gardening results in healthy and tasty produce.

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Improvise Your CV With These 7 Strategic Ways

Your CV is the first thing your employer looks at and determines if you are fit to work for the organization. Your CV is a summary of your achievements in life and education. For your consideration by any employer, you must have other courses on your CV to support your application. You have various classes that you can pursue online that will add value to your CV. The most crucial part is that most of these courses are free and online, which means that you can pursue them anywhere. When you want to have an online course, you can select from the ones listed below:

Google Digital Garage

When you went to a higher education institution and began your career, you never knew that other certifications are essential. However, one of these courses is the Google Digital Garage course. With this on your CV, you get to raise your mark at the job level. You will get a certification recognized worldwide when you select any course under Google. Google courses are certifiable and make a good impression on your CV.

AWS Certification

Most companies have both physical and off-site digital storage, so it is vital to ensure that you know about cloud computing. When choosing cloud computing, you have to decide if you need to be one of the following; cloud developer, cloud user, and cloud architect. All these fields are essential when you are pursuing an AWS course, which helps you grasp all AWS’s nitty-gritty. 

When broken down, you can have three different levels of AWS certification in the study of AWS. Each class has its benchmark, i.e., the foundation level requires you to study for only six months; this includes the grasp of fundamental cloud technology and industry knowledge. The next level is the Associate level; you need to have at least one year of implementation and AWS problem solving for this level. The highest grade you need to have is the professional level that requires you to know AWS’s full architecture and the ability to operate it.

Cyber Security

With the world being digital, you need to have basic cybersecurity training, which will help you convince an employer that you are secure all round. When it comes to being secure, it is essential to know if all your gadgets are safe and do not disclose confidential information online. With the current trend of hackers bringing down a company is easy when the employees do not get trained in cybersecurity. There are certifications that you can get in cybersecurity, and those are Certified ethical hacker, CompTIA security+, among others.

Social media marketing

It is the norm for everybody to be on social media. This availability of social media has impacted most media industries. It is possible to reach clients’ on social media than on viewing television or listening to the radio. An employer will love you more if your social media reach is vast, and that is why you have to ensure that you have the knowledge and certification on social media marketing.

Leadership and mentoring

When you are making your CV, you have to know what job position you are applying for, and this is to enable you to plan your progress in the organization. Most employers will appreciate if an employee has a leadership certification.

Essential negotiations skills

In every work environment, you have to make compromises for everything to fall into place. You need training in understanding other people’s point of view and knowing where to draw the line. All this you need to do with your employer’s interest in mind, and this is why you need to ensure that you have been trained and certified to be a negotiator.

Great writing

Writing is vital to every job position that you may apply for, in that you need to be able to write reports and take minutes. For you to be a good writer, you need to get trained so that you can add this valuable certification to your CV. To get this certification, you need to take a course to enlighten you on the best writing skills.

For a CV to stand out, you have to ensure that you have covered all the required fields by the potential employer. On the other hand, you need to ensure that you have other courses to push ahead of other people. Most companies do not just look at your education level, but they also consider what more you can bring to the organization. These factors are the reason that you need to have in mind while you are creating your CV. When you have your CV, you need to ensure that you know what else you can achieve and not limit yourself. This understanding will help you understand what more you can gain or how high you can rise in your career.

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Tips to Help You Choose the Best Colour for Your Blinds

Choosing the right type of window treatments isn’t purely about choosing between blinds and curtains.  In addition, you also want to choose the right colours so that they fit in with your current décor, and don’t turn heads for all the wrong reasons!  The style of blind – and the colour – will impact how the entire room looks and feels, so it’s not a decision that you should take lightly.  In this article, we’ll provide some tips that will help you choose the best colour for your blinds.

1. White Will Help to Increase the Light

If your room doesn’t get a lot of access to natural light, it’s advised to choose white or cream for your blinds.  These colours are much softer and will provide a lighter look to your room.  White and cream are good options for living rooms and kitchens that require a lot of light, but if you’re the type of person who gets up early in the morning, you could consider them for your bedroom as well.  Plus, white is sophisticated and can add a Grecian air to any room.

2. Play with Colour if Your Décor is Modern

If your home’s décor is contemporary and modern, don’t be afraid to play around with colour.  Some interior designers recommend matching your blinds with your furniture.  Bright red blinds go really well with red furniture if the rest of the room is plain and light, for example.  It can also be fun to choose different coloured blinds if you have more than one window in the room.  It’s best not to add more than three colours to one room, however, unless you want it to look messy and cluttered.

3. Match Your Décor Style

If you take a look at a blinds shop like Hillarys, you’ll see that there are lots of different options when it comes to blinds.  If you want a clinical office look, you can opt for aluminium.  If Parisian chic is more your thing, opt for wooden Venetian.  If you’re decorating a playroom, a bold fabric may look great.  Unless your blinds are going to be the focal point of the room, you don’t want to make them too obscure.  Find a model, and a colour, that fits in with your current décor for the ultimate in design.

4. If In Doubt, Opt for Neutrals

While you can look at a colour wheel to determine which colour blinds are best for your room, sometimes it can be hard to know what will work best.  While an interior designer could help, an easier (and cheaper!) option is to opt for neutrals.  Colours like tan, ivory, off-white, beige and taupe, are designed to fit in with pretty much any décor.  Whether it’s laid back and calm or colourful and funky, neutrals will work.  They also won’t draw attention from other, more important, areas of the room.

If you’re about to buy new blinds for your home, keep the above tips in mind.

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3 Tips for a More Enjoyable Kitchen

How happy are you these days when it comes to your kitchen?

If you could take some steps to improve the look and feel of it, would you go ahead and do so?

In having the best kitchen possible, you can feel more relaxed and productive in that area of the home.

With that in mind, is it time to improve the kitchen?

Give Your Kitchen the Look and Feel You Deserve

In coming up with a better kitchen setting, here are three tips to help you along the way:

1. Appearance – It goes without saying the appearance of your kitchen is key in feeling happy. So, when was the last time you did any notable renovations to this part of the home? If it has been a while, now may be the time to start thinking about some changes. This can include new cabinetry, flooring, paint or wallpaper, furniture and more. By taking the time to redo your kitchen in the look and feel you want, you should be happier when you spend time there. Whether you do the bulk of renovations or you have pros to come in and do it, use the Internet. Going online can give you a whirlwind of ideas as it relates to kitchen changes.

2. Items – Do you have all the items you need in your kitchen to make it what you want it to be? As an example, make sure you do not come up short when it comes to dishware and related accessories. A meal can turn out disappointing if one is missing one or more key items. So, if you like to cook steak or have it on a grill outside, be sure you have things such as the right knives. You can go online and shop for such items in no time at all if you needed better quality knives. Finding Japanese steak knives and related items is not that hard. Also look to make sure you have the right kind and amount of pots, pans and other items to make meals in the first place. With a fully-stocked kitchen, you are good to go.

3. Space – Finally, is your kitchen as big as you’d like it to be? If not, now may in fact be the time to begin thinking about expansion if you have the space. If room to expand is limited, you may think about rearranging how you have your kitchen set up in the first place. With some reorganization on your end, you might be able to come up with a better configuration. Also look at what you have when it comes to space for storing food items that are not in the refrigerator. You may need more pantry space at the end of the day. If so, think about rearranging your cabinets. You might have too many dishes in fact and could use some of the space they take up. That is for storing canned goods and other such items.

When you have a kitchen you can enjoy, life seems to be even more enjoyable.

So, what is cooking in your kitchen these days?

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Is it Time to Move on with Your Life?

You may get to a point in life where you feel the need has come for one or more notable changes.

So, any thoughts to what the change or changes may look like to you?

In deciding what the change may be, take the time to think things through.

Depending on the significance of any changes, you do not want to rush things, only to look back with some regret.

What Changes Might You Be Looking At?

In moving on with your life, here are some potential changes you may be pondering:

1. Change in jobs – Leaving one job for another tends to be a big step for many individuals. That said are you in a position now where changing jobs seems to be the best choice? You may be at a point where you need to make more money, have more challenges and so on. Before giving up your current job, be sure you have another one locked up. Some people make the mistake of leaving a job, only to not have something else lined up. They figure they should be able to find something given their skill set and so on. What can happen is they end up out of work for a significant amount of time. When this occurs, how to pay the bills and more sets in. Be smart and look for something else while still gainfully employed.

2. Time for a new vehicle – You may be looking for another vehicle sooner than later. When that is the case, you want to take your time. Buying a vehicle is a big investment for many consumers. As such, you do not want to rush into it. The last thing you want is to drive away with a lemon. Take your time to research what is on the market. You also need to make sure money will not be an issue. Be sure you can pay for any monthly auto payments, increases in auto insurance and so on.

3. Do you want a divorce? – Going through a divorce can be a difficult procedure for many people. That said you may have come to the realization that it is time to move on from your marriage. If so, you want to make it as stress-free as possible. Some divorces can turn quite ugly before too long. Work with your partner to make the breakup as easy as can be. Of most importance, make sure you have a clear understanding of all the terms of the divorce. This especially means all the proper paperwork is filed. You can go on the Internet once all is taken care of to answer the question, can I get a copy of my divorce decree online. By having all your divorce paperwork in order, you can begin the process of moving on with your life.

4. Moving to a new place – Finally, are you getting the itch to move? Yes, moving can be a hassle at the end of the day. That said you may have outgrown the place you’ve been in. You might also need to move for a job or family reason. No matter why you are moving, get through all the packing and unpacking. Then, settle into what should be a new adventure.

When you have big changes coming to your life, will you be ready to accept them?

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Frank Enrico Andreoli Montreal – Reasons to Work as a Family on a Business

Many will tell you that starting business with your family is a bad idea but the reality is that whilst there are risks, this is a good thing to do. For brothers Frank Enrico Andreoili Montreal has been the city where they have found great success in their business endeavors and both have often commented on the fact that being family is what has brought them such success. Many will cite the potential conflicts which families can have but these two brothers are proof that whilst there may be some challenges, ultimately addressing this as a family is a far better move than going it alone or with someone from outside the family. 

If you had been thinking about launching a family business, here is exactly why it will be the best decision that you have made. 

Staying Close

The reason why many think that running a family business is a bad idea is because throughout history we have seen examples of these businesses going wrong and splitting the family up as a result. The truth of the matter however is that these are fragile families in the first place, and the closure of the business was nothing more than the catalyst. As long as rules are set out and adhered to, families can actually find that they become closer based on the fact that they now have a shared interest and they have to spend more time together on the business. 

Loyalty 

Even the most loyal friends can turn their backs and make bad choices, but when you are working with your own flesh and blood the chances of this happening are almost zero. If you are in a family with any member who you suspect could do something like this then you simply will not be looking to go into business with someone like that in the first place. Only you know your family properly and that is why you would always make that smart decision from the get-go. 

Decision Making 

Another myth with regards to operating a family business is that decisions are tough to make, this is not at all the case and in many instances you will find that a family member is more likely to back down and concede a little, for the greater good of the business or out of love for their family member. Decisions are made quickly and they are made with the consensus of the entire family, this is yet another benefit of running this type of business. 

Ultimately the key to the success of a family run business is that there are ground rules which have been put in place from the very beginning. These rules will help to divide power and assets, as well as the financial side of the business. As long as these rules are in place, the family run business is going to be a force to be reckoned with.

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Ayden Hector – Top Tips on Getting your Fitness Back Post Lockdown

Many in the fitness and the medical community have been speaking recently about the importance that we all look to get ourselves in better shape as soon as possible after lockdown. Indeed just last week I was watching fascinating Instagram live with the brilliant fitness specialist Ayden Hector, who was talking about this exact topic. I wanted then to jump onto this bandwagon so to speak and offer some behavioral tips for how you can get back in shape after lockdown. It is fair to say that many of us have been lazy and have over-indulged during this time, and here is how you can get back on track. 

Walking 

The thought of going for a 10k run or lifting weights may seem terrifying to you right now but the trick to getting things back to where they were is to simply start off by walking. Look to walk for at least one hour every single day for 10 days. This will be enough to get the blood pumping around your body, to get your flexibility and your mobility back to a better place and it will provide you with a solid foundation from which to start getting back in shape, all you have to do is walk. 

Diet In Line

If we are going to be addressing your fitness then we also have to talk diet, this has got to look healthier than it has for the last 6 months. As many in the industry will tell you, there is no way of working out a bad diet. This means that even if you are killing yourself with exercise each day, if you are not eating right, you are going to have some serious issues in bringing the weight down to a place that you are comfortable with. 

Buddy Up 

There is a need for a certain sense of pressure and motivation when you are looking to get back in shape and you can get that from a friend or a family member who is looking to do the same thing as you are. This is why buddying up can be a great idea because you both put pressure on each other to be better and to work harder. 

Setting Manageable Goals

Whilst it is of course beneficial that you are in the best health that you can be as soon as possible, there is no mad rush for this and so you should look to avoid any kind of fad or crash diets which promise rapid results. The key is to alter your lifestyle, eat better, exercise more, there really isn’t too much more to it than that. With this in mind you have to ensure that you are setting reasonable and manageable goals for yourself which are tough, but achievable. 

The key to this is to keep it very simple and to take your time, you will get there as long as you are prepared to work hard.

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