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June 28, 2022

Using a Third-party Payroll Provider

If you want or need to use an outside payroll company, be sure to choose wisely. The company will have access to your sensitive payroll information and your bank account where employment taxes are held. The IRS has some tips to help select a trusted payroll service.  #IdeaoftheDay

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Big Ideas For Your Business

Resources For Your Business
  • “There are two things people want more than sex and money: recognition and praise.” — Mary Kay Ash, Founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics Small business owners know it’s important to recognize the achievements of employees. It’s been reported companies with formal recognition programs have 31% less turnover and are 12 times more likely to have strong business outcomes. But what about recognition for companies and their owners? It is important too. What form can this recognition take? Importance of recognizing small business owners Small business owners self-define their success and don’t necessarily seek out recognition or praise. Success may be in […]

  • An ingenious, original idea is a central part of any successful business. You may think you’ve come up with a brilliant new idea for a business, but you could also lack experience in launching and managing your own business organization. Try to ensure your idea is as unique as possible and avoid entering an overly saturated market where you may easily get outcompeted by other companies operating in the same space. Embrace your business idea and try to find your own lane. To support you, we’ve come up with some ideas on what you should do next if you think […]

  • Now may be the time for small businesses to hunker down and prepare for worse times to come. While the pandemic may no longer be a significant factor in planning, there’s talk of a recession—will it or won’t it happen? No one knows for sure, but some economic indicators are pointing toward a recession, or at least very slow growth period. Economic indicators There are various economic indicators that business owners can watch to know whether it’s a good time to expand or to bide your time. The traditional 5 include: Gross national product (GDP)—the market value of all final […]

  • Summer begins this year on June 21 and runs through September 22. It is a period of heat and a time of opportunity. For some seasonal businesses, it represents their entire year. Whatever your business and wherever you’re located, there’s sure to be some seasonal impact. Here are some business ideas for summer Be sure workers are safe Exposure to heat—outdoors and indoors—poses a health risk to workers. OSHA has guidance for companies to help prevent illness from the heat. Also, OSHA launched a National Emphasis Program (NEP) on heat; here’s a fact sheet. Prepare for hurricanes The Atlantic hurricane season […]

  • With Father’s Day approaching, I couldn’t help but think about my dad. He died many years ago, but I still miss him. One thing that came to mind about him and made me chuckle was his apparent inability to carry cash. It prompted me to recall some interesting situations and to think more about cash then and now. No cash in his pocket My dad just never had any money with him, even though he had the wherewithal to do so. He had his own business—a machine shop—and was a solid middle-class guy. But he usually went cashless. He rarely […]

  • If you’re about to start a new business or have started up but are still finding your way, here’s a statistic that might make your eyes water. Around 20% of new enterprises fail in the first two years after opening, while 45% close during the first five years. It gets worse: Only 25% of businesses last for 15 years or more. One of the biggest reasons behind all these failures? Problems with cash flow. Businesses often have a tough time collecting invoices from slow-paying customers, impacting their bottom line. However, it’s not all doom and gloom. 1. Cash Flow Is […]

  • Golden handcuffs are benefits provided by an employer to discourage an employee from leaving the company to take another job. Golden handcuffs have a bad connotation; it’s implied that they unhappily tie an employee to a job. But golden handcuffs may be a good strategy during this period of the Great Resignation and can be done in such a way that benefits both the employee and the company. Develop a strategy that benefits both the employee and the company. Intangibles Golden handcuffs traditionally are viewed as monetary. But in today’s environment, intangibles can be a form of non-monetary compensation. Technically, […]

  • Merriam-Webster defines intellectual property, or IP, as “property (as an idea, invention, or process) that derives from the work of the mind or intellect; also: an application, right, or registration relating to this.” IP can be a boon to a business (think about the Coca Cola formula, the Nike trademark, and the patent for Dropbox). Unfortunately, there’s a great deal of theft of U.S. intellectual property, which was estimated to be $822.3 billion in 2021. This can be stealing trade secrets, counterfeiting goods, and pirating software and video games. While there may be no way to fully protect your IP, there […]

  • Labor shortages are nothing new, but the COVID-19 pandemic has sparked significant shortages across the country and several industries. From logistics and trucking to food and beverages, many sectors have more unfilled job openings than people to fill them. While there is no one perfect solution businesses can use to overcome a worker shortage, implementing new technologies can alleviate some of the issues stemming from the shortage. Continue reading to learn about how businesses use technology to combat their workforce shortages. Understanding U.S. Labor Shortages Aside from the pandemic, one factor contributing to increases in labor shortages is The Great […]

  • In 1997, I wrote The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Starting a Home-Based Business, which subsequently went through 3 editions. By the time I wrote the book, I’d already been working from home for a number of years. This took place before the internet, before fax machines, and before working from home was a concept embraced by the business world. Now, 2 years into COVID-19 and the widespread use of remote work arrangements, I thought it would be fun to share some of my experiences with working from home. They may prove to be valuable lessons to owners and employees now […]

  • Did you know that 95% of consumers are outside the U.S.? Small businesses can expand their markets to other countries and capture new customers. Exporting can also be a risk management strategy because foreign markets may not suffer economic downturns at the same time are your home economy. Small businesses already comprise 97.4% of all U.S. exporters and you can be part of this impressive statistic. The concept of exporting may seem challenging, but it’s easier than you think. Basics of what you need to do to start exporting If you want to export, you’ll need to take certain actions […]

  • Disasters can happen at any time. They can be natural disasters, such as storms, earthquakes, and mudslides. Or they can result from human activity, such as arson and riots. Certain periods see more frequent natural disasters. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season runs from May 15 through November 30, the Atlantic hurricane season as well as that for the Central Pacific (including Hawaii) runs from June 1 through November 30. May is also National Wildfire Awareness Month. Because of the potential for experiencing a natural disaster, all business owners should, as former Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli said, “prepare for the worst but […]

  • When you hire a worker, you effectively have an agreement that you’ll pay the worker for the work performed and treat the worker fairly. But depending on the nature of the worker—skilled, management, etc.—and the nature of your company, you may want additional agreements. Agreements are really contracts reflecting terms and conditions that each party understands and the breach of which can result in consequences. So, which agreements (contracts) do you want or need with your employees and what’s the best way to handle these agreements? Which agreements with your employees are advisable? Most employees in the U.S. are “at […]

  • With National Small Business Week recently passed, it’s a good time to look at how business owners appear on their personal tax returns. The IRS’s Spring 2022 Statistics of Income Bulletin has data on 2020 returns.  Here are some highlights for a tax portrait of business owners: Business income and losses reported Of the 164,187,262 federal income tax returns filed for 2020, 27,455,060 attached Schedule C to report non-farm income or loss from a sole proprietorship (farming income is reported on Schedule F discussed later). Schedule C is also used by independent contractors, including those who work in the gig […]

  • Under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), you must pay workers subject to minimum wage rules for the time that work is performed. This rule applies whether they’re working at your company site, in their homes, or on location. This simple statement is more complex when you try to define whether the time spent on certain activities falls within FLSA requirements. Look at various scenarios: Commuting Employers don’t have to compensate employees for the time they take to get to and from work each day; commuting isn’t treated as work. This is so regardless of the length of their […]

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Resources For Your Business

Mental Health In the Workplace: What Can Employers Do?

Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) Reporting for Your Business

5 Ways to Have a Healthier Workplace

Business Owners Need to Plan for Personal Catastrophe

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barbara’s books

  • J.K. Lasser's Small Business Taxes 2022
     A complete guide to taxes for small businesses, brought to you by the leading name in taxes
    If you own a small business, this comprehensive guide explains in easy-to-understand terms the essentials of business taxes to prepare you to work better with your CPA or other tax adviser or handle tax responsibilities on your own. Whether you’re a sole proprietor or have organized your business as a corporation, partnership, or limited liability company, the information is tailored for your business. Up-to-date information is keyed to the 2021 tax return as well as providing evergreen tax planning to improve your bottom line. A free supplement available in February 2022 updates the information so you won’t miss out on any tax-saving opportunities.
    Buy from Amazon
  • J.K. Lasser's 1001 Deductions & Tax Breaks 2022
    The definitive guide to all income-tax deductions and credits for the everyday taxpayer.
    The fifth edition of this popular book has been fully updated to reflect the latest rulings and laws, allowing the reader you to easily refer to the appropriate deductions for their your particular needs. A free supplement available in February 2022 updates the information so you won’t miss out on any tax-saving opportunities.
    Buy from Amazon
  • 500+ Big Ideas for Your Small Business

    Ideas you'll use everyday!

    With only so many hours in the day, it’s impossible to stay on top of key developments and opportunities to help you run your business better and smarter. 500+ Big Ideas for Your Small Business gives you quick access to resources and tips you can use every day. Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or just starting out, you’ll find actionable ideas to help you with your finances, your operations, your staff, your marketing, your taxes, your technology, your environment, and your personal growth.
    Buy from Amazon
  • Home-Based Business Start-Up Guide
    A Step-By-Step Road Map--with Checklists--to Get You Started Up, Profitable, and Successful 
    Whether you want to start up a part-time home-based business or jump in full throttle and work on it full time, you need a start-up guide. A road map! Home-Based Business Start-Up Guide will help you chart your course to work-from-home success. Written by industry expert Barbara Weltman, our Start-Up Guide is broken up into easily digestible chapters that cover the key areas of a new business launch. We outline 10 fundamental steps to succeed in running a home business. These include selecting a business; determining business fit; establishing your business organization; business protections; marketing and selling; setting up a productive home office; managing your business; achieving success; business growth and more. Jim Blasingame, Host of The Small Business Advocate Show, and author of the award-winning books, “The 3rd Ingredient,” and “The Age of the Customer” says:  "At a time when working from home is becoming the norm, why wouldn’t right now be a perfect time to start a home-based business? If you’re still with me, here’s the next logical question: Why wouldn’t you want to learn how to do that from someone who was home-based before it was cool? Someone who was making being home-based look good before technology made it easy. Well, that person is my friend, Barbara Weltman, and she’s put all of her experience, wisdom and perspective in a new book, “Home-Based Business Start-up Guide.” It’s a by-the-numbers tutorial on how to launch a successful home-based business. Let Barbara help you get your home-based business going with her book, and all of the other awesome resources she produces in support of small businesses. She’s the best."
    Buy from Amazon
  • The Delivery Driver Tax and Business Guide, Kindle Edition

    Your GPS to Get You Where You Want to Go in Your Business

    Do you enjoy driving and being your own boss with flexible work options? Are you looking for a part-time (or full-time) activity that earns good money? Maybe you’ve already discovered that there are great opportunities for making money with your car. Or, you’d like to become a delivery driver driver but uncertain how to begin. This guide, "The Delivery Driver Tax and Business Guide" is your answer!
    Buy from Amazon
  • Guide to Self-Employment: Taxes, Strategies, and Money-Saving Tips for Schedule C filers, 2nd Edition

    What every self-employed person needs to know about their taxes!

    If you’re self-employed, chances are the majority of your time is spent finding new customers or clients, servicing existing ones, and handling each and every aspect of your business. Freelancers, independent contractors, gig economy participants, and other individuals working for themselves need to be aware of their responsibilities when it comes to paying their taxes. Even if you have an accountant or use tax preparation software, you may not be aware of all the deductions and credits you are entitled to. That’s where the experts at J.K. Lasser come in. The second edition of J.K. Lasser's Guide to Self-Employment helps you file your taxes correctly, accurately, and on time. Using clear, jargon-free language, this bestselling guide explains the legal and financial implications of self-employment and shows you how to keep as much of your hard-earned money as legally possible. A reader says: "This book, Guide to Self Employment, is an excellent tax resource for all freelancers & self employed people, including small business owners. Barbara Weltman is a knowledgeable tax attorney & small business specialist."
    Buy from Amazon
  • The Uber/Lyft Driver Tax & Business Guide, Kindle Edition
    Created for Uber and Lyft drivers as their GPS -- to help them get where they want to go in their business, safely and securely.
    Note: This e-Book has been updated with a new title and revised content (shown). Do you enjoy driving and being your own boss with flexible work options? Are you looking for a part-time (or full-time) activity that earns good money? Maybe you’ve already discovered that there are great opportunities for making money with your car, and you’re a business owner driving for Uber, Lyft, or other platform. Or, you’d like to become an Uber or Lyft driver but uncertain how to begin. This guide, "The Uber/Lyft Driver Tax & Business Guide," is your answer!  
    Buy from Amazon
  • Smooth Failing
    Presenting a recently-launched, updated, paperback edition!  Barbara Weltman takes an inspired look in Smooth Failing at the hard lessons learned when things go wrong. Through extensive interviews with entrepreneurs whose ventures failed for a variety of reasons — some stunningly unexpected, some painfully inevitable — Barbara gleans valuable insights about the small mistakes that can lead to large scale catastrophe.  Smooth Failing seeks to save readers from similar disaster — while empowering those who are learning from failures and adversity to bounce back stronger and wiser on the often rocky road to success.
    Buy from Amazon
  • Small Business Survival Book

    Small Business Survival Book

    12 surefire ways for your business to survive and thrive! Owning a small business can be a fulfilling and financially rewarding experience, but to be successful, you must know what to do while the business is up and running, and, most importantly, what to do when the business runs into trouble. This book is definitely part of what you need to succeed!
    Buy from Amazon
  • The Rational Guide to Building Small Business Credit
    As Vicki Raeburn of Dun & Bradstreet notes in the forward, "...the successful creation of credit by small business has a significant effect on one of the most important business drivers, namely cash flow. ...     [This book has] the information needed to understand and build business credit."
    Buy from Amazon

testimonials

  • " Always an excellent newsletter from you, Barbara!
    Barbara's newsletter and the information she shares are always useful and topical. Always an excellent newsletter from you, Barbara!”  -- Bob Benowitz ”

    - Bob Benowitz

  • " Love your articles!
    I love the simplicity of your articles. ”

    - Marie Porolniczak, CB

  • " Let Barbara help you get your home-based business going!
    Jim Blasingame, Host of The Small Business Advocate Show, and author of the award-winning books, “The 3rd Ingredient,” and “The Age of the Customer” says:  "At a time when working from home is becoming the norm, why wouldn’t right now be a perfect time to start a home-based business? If you’re still with me, here’s the next logical question: Why wouldn’t you want to learn how to do that from someone who was home-based before it was cool? Someone who was making being home-based look good before technology made it easy. Well, that person is my friend, Barbara Weltman, and she’s put all of her experience, wisdom and perspective in a new book, “Home-Based Business Start-up Guide.” It’s a by-the-numbers tutorial on how to launch a successful home-based business. Let Barbara help you get your home-based business going with her book, and all of the other awesome resources she produces in support of small businesses. She’s the best." ”

    - Jim Blasingame, Host of The Small Business Advocate Show

  • " I Love Your Ideas of the Day!
    I love your ideas of the day! They have become an instrumental part of my learning! ”

    - Gina Bertoletti

  • " You should sign up for the Idea of the Day®
    You should sign up for the "Idea of the Day®" by Barbara Weltman. This will give you great tips and help you with your daily business needs. She writes every article with consummate skill. ”

    - Lesley

  • " Your blogs contain information that everyone can use!
    As a tax attorney and small business specialist, Barbara has a lot of great information to share. Barbara, your blogs contain information that everyone can use!  Your newly-expanded ebook, "175+ Big Ideas for Small Business" ebook has lots of great recommendations for small business owners. ”

    - Lisa Rubenfeld

  • " Best information for a small business owner!
    For a small business owner, the information [in your book] is absolutely one of the best I’ve come across! Thanks so much for the break-down of information. ”

    - Michelle Joe

  • " I don't want to miss it!
    I just wanted to reach out and give you a very big, truly heartfelt "thank you" for all the work that you do to help small business owners grow and succeed. More specifically, I wanted to offer you some praise for your blog posts and Idea of the Day®. My email inbox gets so very cluttered. And honestly, on most days I will do a wholesale delete of many, many messages. But I literally stop and specifically look for your name and your small business Idea of the Day®. I don't want to miss it! In fact, I look forward to reading it daily (even on weekends!) because I know I'm going to learn something new that saves me money, time or just adds to my professional knowledge in a way that helps me help others too. So thank you, thank you, thank you for your efforts! ”

    - Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, The Money Coach

  • " Getting your daily email is like getting an MBA in small business!
    Thank you for finding this important information. Getting your daily email is like getting an MBA in small business. ”

    - J. S. Budnik

  • " Thank You, Barbara!
    "Thank you, Barbara Weltman, for all of your articles and tax advice to small business owners! All the best." ”

    - Shane Madigan

  • " Thanks for providing such useful information!
    I follow your blog religiously for the great tips you provide. I love the new look. It makes me smile to see that your blog got an update.  Thanks for providing such useful information. ”

    - Lee Drozak

  • " Barbara Weltman is an Advocate for Small Business
    She has been an advocate, public speaker, and resource for small business news since the release of her first book, J.K. Lasser’s Tax Deductions for Small Business, in 1995. Since then she has run her website, her Big Ideas for Small Business® newsletter, and her blog, not to mention written over a dozen books. Ms. Weltman is on this list twice because for many business owners, it is easier to scroll through her Twitter feed for trending topics and news events than search her website. However, if you don’t take a minute to read her newsletters or blog — you’re missing out. ”

    - Meredith Wood, Fundera Ledger

  • " Great segment!!!
    Barbara Weltman is one smart cookie - I follow her on Twitter, and her content is always interesting and informative. ”

    - An eBay Radio listener - purplejaime1976

  • " Absolutely love your Idea of the Day®
    it’s BRIEF, concise and timely. Funny, I do a quick scan of my bloated mail box, quickly deleting what I feel is a time waster. But I NEVER delete Idea of the Day® until I've first opened it. Both you and Napoleon Hill's Thought for the day ALWAYS get read. You’re in terrific company. Thanks. ”

    - Don Aronowitz

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