Sep 18 2013

Workers’ Comp Agency Recommends 4.4% Rate Increase

Published by under Business

workers comp
The agency that helps set workers’ comp rates is recommending they increase 4.4% at the start of next year. The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau in early August recommended that the average benchmark pure premium rates for all of the state’s class codes in-crease to $2.62 per $100 of payroll for policies incepting on or after Jan. 1, 2014.

A good portion of the rate increase is due to increased claims filings, as well as rises in medical costs and permanent disability benefits that partly took effect this year and take full effect in 2014.

This year, benefit increases added an-other $620 million in system costs, the Rating Bureau has estimated. In 2014, the increases will add another $590 million in costs for all workers’ comp payers in the state.

That said, cost increases are expected to be offset by savings from reforms contained in SB 863, which was signed into law in 2012 and took effect at the start of this year. Continue Reading »

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Jul 30 2012

How to become a sucessful business analyst

Published by under Business

Become a successful business analyst, ho to Become a successful business analyst http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/?p=11

The position of Business Analyst seems to have attained swift prominence with modern day companies that are re-engineering their own operations and embedding IT systems at the center of these business.

Professional organizations like the BCS and the IIBA have tailored internationally accepted business analysis training and certification schemes.

The role has now been refined from that of the old-school Systems Analyst from the Nineteen eighties – and as a result continues to progress. Pretty much when Business Analysis appeared to have now evolved into a suitably outlined and more mainstream management style, the use of Agile development and project management software processes is definitely forming fresh opportunities. Continue Reading »

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Jul 20 2012

10 Things You Should Do When Opening A New Business

Published by under Business

Article by Chris Davodi of 1 Stop Service Business Resources.

Grand Opening, Opening a new business tips http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/10-things-you-should-do-when-opening-a-new-business/

Amongst the million businesses that open up every year, some make it past their first year and churn profits while others fail in not being able to generate a profit. Perhaps it might be things that are out of your control like the state of the market or even the economy, in general.

While there is a possibility that you might not succeed due to these factors, you can probably increase your chances by making a checklist of tasks that you should complete when you open a new business.

Here are some vital tasks that can help you succeed, or help you survive when things get rough:

#1: In determining whether the business will suit your life’s goals or not, you can proceed to create a business and marketing plan while also using the break-even analysis to determine whether or not the business will succeed before jumping headlong.

#2: Finding a legal structure for your business is paramount, and this means understanding which ownership structure will suit your business, and perhaps, a lawyer will be able to help you streamline your efforts.

#3: Get a good name for your business and make sure you have the paperwork in place.

#4: It is important to find an appropriate business location so that it will stand more chances for success in its first year.

#5: Obtaining Insurance, filing for permits and licenses while also setting tax reporting and accounting are also important tasks.

 

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Jul 05 2012

Content Writing Tips For Your Website

Published by under Marketing

Article by Pierre Zarokian of iClimber.

Content Writing Tips, Content writing tips --> http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/?p=32

One of the best things that business owners can do these days is to promote their business over the internet through social media and in particular, a website. To say the least, it opens up your products or services to a global audience, and that can mean more profitability and potential customers for your business.

However, it’s not just about making any website but one that will catch the fancy of your potential customers, and there are certain aspects of content (and writing it) that you must keep in mind in order to drive traffic to your website.

So here is a list of content writing tips that will help you enjoy a successful business that you can generate through your website:

#1: Keywords, keywords, keywords

With people looking for information regarding certain products or services by the means of search engines and entering certain keywords, you’d be smart if you incorporated those particular keywords (pertaining to your business) in the content on your website. Focus on using one keyword per web page.

#2: Striking a chord with your readers

Remember that you aren’t writing for search engine but humans so you should ensure that you use emotional language when talking about your product or service so that you are able to strike a chord with your readers, and which will cause them to show interest in buying what you have on offer.

#3: Write like you are talking

As most people would have learnt in college or school to write as if you are preparing a dissertation for your Ph.D, using this approach for the internet is not a WISE. Write as if you are talking to a friend – someone who is a curious acquaintance and wants to know more about your product.

If you are interested in professional content writing services, visit www.iClimber.com website. In addition, you may want to read more tips at the iClimber Social Media Marketing Blog.

If you are interested in professional content writing services, visit www.iClimber.com website. In addition, you may want to read more tips at the iClimber Social Media Marketing Blog

 

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Jun 03 2012

How To Avoid And Fight Charge Backs

Published by under Business

Article by Kristin Gabrieli of Total Merchants.
Credit Cards, read more about credit cards at http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/

Charge backs are a reality that every online merchant has to deal with, and there are several reasons why this happens, one being potential fraud, but the person who has to deal with loss is the merchant as soon as the customer asks for a refund from their bank.

This is why it is so important for merchants to be careful of getting into situations where charge backs are imminent, and so here is a list of tips that will help you avoid charge backs right from the outset: Continue Reading »

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Aug 14 2014

Increase Sales With Better Registers

Published by under Business Services

By Cash Registers Online

When you’re in business, it’s impossible to not constantly look for more and better ways to increase your sales and, therefore, boost profits. That’s especially true these days, thanks to our downed economy. Any opportunity you can find to bring in more money is an opportunity you need to take or suffer the consequences.

Fortunately, there are many ways to do this that don’t need to cost you a lot of money. For example, have you ever thought about investing in better cash registers? It may seem like a simple thing to do, but that small investment could wind up paying out dividends.

Machines like SAM4s cash registers and Sharp cash registers are rather affordable when you consider what they can do. That’s one of the best things about this kind of investment: it’ll start working for you immediately and bring you all kinds of great features.

However, over time, the returns will really kick in when you start seeing more business by using registers that allow you to process customers quicker.

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No matter what kind of retail business you run, you won’t get very far with it if you don’t have the best possible cash registers doing some of the heavy lifting on their own. Every business has their own needs where these are concerned and Cash Registers Online can meet them all. From Cash Register Keyboard Covers to Cash Register Manuals to the actual things (of course) and anything in between, this website has it all.

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Aug 13 2014

Reasons Behind Construction Delays

Published by under Legal

By Lyle Charles

If you’re in the construction business, then I don’t need to tell you how difficult and challenging it can be at times. For some, it actually feels like this all the time. However, the good news is that if you can see some of those challenges coming, you can potentially head them off before they become giant problems that delay your build.

A big one that you never want to deal with is a dispute between parties involved on the build. This often happens with suppliers. It becomes a difficult problem because you need them to continue with their deliveries on time, but you may simultaneously be looking for a construction expert witness to testify on your behalf.

Unions can sometimes become an issue too. Everyone knows that the threat of a strike is a huge bargaining chip for good reason. But there are other ways unions can potentially put a build on ice.

Then there are completely unforeseen circumstances like equipment problems and the weather.

All of these issues should be something you constantly keep your eye on so you stand a better chance of brining your build in under budget and on time.

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When you need a bit of extra help with your current build, look no further than Lyle Charles for support and insights where it matters. Through his firm, you can get everything from his skills as a construction claim preparation advisor to help with turnaround services, consultations on matters that may be holding you back and much more. Don’t try facing down big challenges on your own, get help from the best.

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Aug 08 2014

The Formation of the CIA – By Samuel Phineas Upham

Published by under Business

This article was written by Samuel Phineas Upham

The passage of the National Security Act of 1947 was a restructuring of the United States military to better support the security of Americans. President Truman signed the act into law, inspired by the success of the Office of Strategic Services throughout World War II. OSS was dissolved after the war ended, but its operations continued in the Departments of State and War.

Truman had heard a proposal from William Donovan, the OSS creator, to create an organization in charge of procuring intelligence and conduct covert operations. Donovan proposed the creation of a civilian agency that is centralized, with the authority to conduct operations abroad. At the time, Donovan was careful to state that the fledgling CIA should not have powers of police at home or abroad, it would be a vessel for reporting and accumulating intelligence.

The first director of the CIA was Rear Admiral Roscoe H. Hillenkoetter. He oversaw operations in support of Christian democrats in Italy. The CIA quickly began a program of plausible deniability, or setting operations up such that other nations could not truly uncover who was behind the plot.

The program descended further into secrecy in 1949, when it was given authorization to hide its employee’s names, salary information, official titles and job functions from public scrutiny.

Today, under increased pressure for transparency, the organization uses something called Open Source Intelligence to provide maps and documentation for the public and the intelligence community.


About the Author: Samuel Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Samuel Phineas Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Samuel Phineas Upham on his Facebook page.

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Aug 07 2014

Top Tips to Grow a Mobile Ad Campaign

Published by under Advertising

Mobile ad spending is increasing, and there are new tools to help narrow down to the audience you want to show ads to. If you want to grow your mobile campaigns, you will need to design every aspect of your ads with mobile users in mind.

Speed

Mobile users are on data plans that may take longer than a normal land Internet line to render a page. As a result, speed is a factor in mobile ad conversions. Design your site, and your banner advertising, so that it displays as quickly as possible. Smaller ad sizes help, but alternate formats like PNG allow you to keep the look of your image in a file size that is compressed.

Navigation should also get an overhaul. Remember that most mobile users will be using their thumbs to navigate their screen. Don’t complicate that with a lot of drop downs and links that are hard to see. Design your site and your ads to feature prominent links that are accessible to those with large hands.

Design

Mobile users have to deal with a small screen size, and usually adverse lighting conditions. If your ad is designed with too much white, for instance, it won’t be as accessible as if it featured some darker colors. Limit the text on your page, and use larger fonts so that users can easily read your copy. You should also do some work on your conversion funnel to see if you can make the process from landing to thank you page more efficient. Clicks are valuable on desktop, even more so on mobile. Simplify the process and make it one single step to convert for higher success rates.

Targeting

Mobile users tend to search for location-specific keywords, so localizing your landing page will go a long way towards netting conversions. You should also design your display advertising with location in mind, perhaps with the home state featured prominently in the ad with “proudly serving the local area” text. Also include functions that help people communicate easily with you, especially if you are leading someone to a brick and mortar store. A phone number, a Skype click-to-call button or a map can all help bring more clients to you.

The most important tip to grow is to learn from your mistakes. Try running some kind of feedback campaign, and actually ask users what features are most important to include in a mobile site.

Bio: Ted Dhanik is the CEO and co-founder of display advertising buy-side platform engage:BDR. Ted Dhanik has used display advertising to put brands like MySpace and LowerMyBills on the map. Find out how to use mobile advertising to generate business leads with tips from Ted Dhanik.

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Aug 01 2014

Staples Company

Published by under Business

Written by Phin Upham

Staples is one of many companies that received its initial funding from Bain Capital. In fact, former presidential candidate Mitt Romney sat on the board of the company for 15 years, helping to advise the growing store’s business model.

Thomas G. Stemberg initially created the concept for Staples in 1985. He was up late working on a business proposal for another venture when he realized his printer was out of ink. His local dealer was closed in observance of a holiday. Frustrated, Stemberg developed a vision for a retail superstore focused exclusively on office products.

He opened his first store in 1986, in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston. Within five years, the company had expanded locations within the US, and began a chain in Canada called “The Business Depot.”

Staples became a Fortune 500 company in 1996, on its tenth year anniversary. It had amassed over $3 billion in sales by that point, and planned to merge with its competitor Office Depot. The FTC struck the merger down on concerns of increases in supply prices.

Staples acquired the rights to name a new stadium being built in Los Angeles for the Lakers and Kings. It also tried to branch into cellular service through an acquisition of a Canadian provider, but the venture failed quickly and was sold off to cover losses.

Today, Staples does a lot of business through its ecommerce websites. It also operates internationally, with stores in Denmark, India.


Phin Upham is an investor from NYC and SF. You may contact Phin on his Phin Upham

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Jul 17 2014

Why you should go into export

Published by under Goods and Services

Written by port containers

Engaging in the export business is actually very rewarding. The whole notion about going into export will only cause you trouble is actually not true. For starters, you can buy used containers for sale or seek out storage containers for rentso you can transport your goods. Going into business through export is not easy, because after all, nothing is easy if you stand to make so much money out of it. So, what makes the export business so different than going into regular business? Sure, any typical business man would tell you that you don’t need to go overseas because America is the largest economy in the world, and all the money that is to be made can be made right here. It is true that America is the largest economy in the world, but you will have to understand that going into business overseas may even be more profitable. Imagine if McDonalds never expanded to the rest of the world, how do you think their profits would be looking right now? As a matter of fact, the largest companies in the world are how they are right now because they had the foresight to expand into foreign countries. You can be just like they are, and all you need is a little hard work as well as a very good business sense to get all the right deals that will make you the most profits and give you the most business growth as well to expand your market share.

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Conex containers don’t actually have to be expensive. It all depends on where you buy it from

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Jul 16 2014

Hyundai: Corporate History

Published by under Business

Written by Phin Upham

In 1947, Chung Ju-Yung founded an engineering and construction company he called “Hyundai.” It took twenty years for Ju-Yung to go beyond construction and into motorcars, releasing his first in partnership with Ford in 1968. But Hyundai wasn’t satisfied with resting his company laurels on this joint venture.

He hired George Turnbull along with five other top British automotive engineers. They designed and built the Pony, a small 4-door sedan that used rear-wheel drive to get around. The first exports went to Ecuador, then to Benelux.

Hyundai brought the Pony to Canada in 1984, but the vehicle couldn’t pass the strict emissions standards set by America. The Pony quickly became the top selling car in Canada, and Hyundai rolled its one millionth car off the assembly line in 1985.

A year later, Hyundai brought the Excel to the United States. Fortune called it the tenth best product of the year, owed almost entirely to its affordability. The Sonata, a line that continues today, went into production in 1988. By ’91, the company had developed a proprietary gasoline engine it called the Alpha. It also built its own transmission, which helped to create technological independence for Hyundai.

An Indian division began production in 1996, but the big break came in 2004 when J.D. Power named Hyundai the second best brand in initial quality. Hyundai also gained significant market share after its sponsorship of the 2002 World Cup, a deal which still continues today.


Phin Upham is an investor from NYC and SF. You may contact Phin on his Twitter page.

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Jul 16 2014

Simple Accessories Every Pilot Should Have

Submitted Start Pac

When you think about taking your plane or helicopter into the air, there are probably a number of different factors you know you must consider. Like any good pilot, you probably have a checklist you use to ensure you’re being safe and thorough in your preparations. However, so long as you have safety covered, there are a number of other things you can do to get the most from your trip into the sky.

Just like many motorcyclists enjoy a good pair of gloves for better grips, you may as well when it comes to flying your plane or helicopter. They also look great and can protect your hands when exiting the vehicle on cold days. Obviously, you never want to take the controls with number fingers.

A ground power unit is also a cool accessory you should have nearby. With a portable GPU, you never have to be inconvenienced if your plane or helicopter’s battery dies prior to take off. Just use the unit to jump the battery and get back into the air.

Lastly, consider a bag or kit for all your supplies necessary for de-icing a plane before taking it into the air on a cold day. It’s convenient and could safe your life.

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Whether you need aircraft maintenance equipment or portable power supply  units for getting energy where it’s needed most, Start Pac is here to help. Not only are their products 100% American made, but their reputation in the industry for providing high-quality, affordable products speaks for itself.

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Jul 15 2014

Running your own jewelry business from home

Published by under Jewelry

Written by John Woodson

A jewelry business does not have to mean a multi-million dollar enterprise. As a matter of fact, it can be a small business that even runs out of your bedroom or living room. When the word jewelry comes into mind, it does not have to mean expensive items made out of precious stones like diamonds and sapphires, it can be made out of cubic zirconia, Swarovski crystal, and other fancy beads that are shiny and sparkly as well. That’s right, you can do all of this at home. All you need to have to get started is have some Earring kits, and all of the materials that you need in order for you to make your jewelry and accessory creations. You can sell to your friends and neighbors, or you can even sell online. You do not have to go big right away, you know. You can start by making a few pieces a week, and see whether people like it or not. A substantial investment, then, is not necessary if you create your own jewelry at home. Think about it, if you invest a hundred dollars in the materials that you buy and make 20 pieces of jewelry which you can sell for 15 dollars a piece, how much is that? That’s 300 dollars, or a return of 3 dollars for every dollar you invest. Sounds good? Of course it does. And that’s why running a jewelry business from your own home does not have to be expensive nor impossible as well.

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Too Cute Beads is the place to go to for the creative genius inside of you. You can buy everything like jewelry findings right here.

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Jul 10 2014

USAA Financial Services

Published by under Business

This article was written by Phineas Upham

The United States Automobile Association was started in 1922 by a group of Army officers as a method to self-insure. It is a Fortune 500 company that offers diversified financial services that include banking and investing advice, in addition to providing insurance for military members that have been honorably discharged.

After three army officers found themselves in a high-risk insurance pool, they decided to try alternate methods to insure themselves. They formed a small company to do just that, and USAA has since expanded its services to include banking and insurance for members of the armed forces and their families.

It conducts almost all of its business through direct marketing, and retains no agents. It uses employees to close deals, and does most of its business either through the telephone or online.

The company name changed after its services were opened to include members from foreign military forces as well. The company has offices established in Frankfurt, Germany and London, England. In the 1960s, USAAs services expanded further to include home insurance, and then again to offer life insurance.

The company isn’t like most other companies on the 500 list. It caters almost exclusively to members of the armed forces, but serves the immediate families of those members as well. This includes National Guard and Reserve units in addition to primary branches of the armed forces. Although many of USAAs financial products are geared toward military members, investment and deposit-only banking services are available to non-members.

USAA currently employs more than 23,000 people in offices throughout the Continental United States.


About the Author: Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phineas Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phineas on his LinedIn page.

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