Becoming a Leader

Since childhood, my life was filled with role models of strong women leaders who were “firsts” in their positions.  Those early influences set the framework for the leadership roles of my life.

I wish I could tell you it’s always been easy – but I can’t.

Instead – I’ll share a very important but difficult story that changed my life and helped shape me into the leader and mentor I am today.

There was a day when I was all set to give up my dreams.  I’d been treated so unfairly and met with such hardships that I didn’t know if I even wanted to reach the goals I had set for my life. But then something important happened ….

You see, I had encountered a woman in my town that everyone both loved and feared who was a “first” to reach a powerful position in society.  She was also a leader in an organization that gave scholarships to high school girls to help them complete their studies. One month, I was one of the lucky ones selected for this honor. This woman decided that I had “potential” so she took my under her wings to mentor me on important life ideas. When I prepared to leave on a particular academic journey, she looked at me and said “I’m keeping my eye on you. When you get back, you answer to me about what you achieved.”

It was the memory of those words along with the hopes and dreams of my parents and grandmother that came back to me as I lay crying on my bed that summer afternoon feeling defeated.  I had earned the highest scores in the course on all the tests, but the professor gave me one of the lowest grades because he “didn’t believe in a woman studying business at that level.” When I found out he had left for a 3 month overseas trip and I couldn’t fight the grade without him being there I seriously considered dropping out of college. It was almost too much. How many times could I get shot down after trying so hard – because of unfairness of someone’s personal prejudices?

Yet, I knew that if I returned to my hometown without finishing my course of study, I would have to face my family and “that woman.”  Something in me knew that I couldn’t fail – I had to get up and fight once more to meet my goals.

There were mentors waiting on my good report – and I wasn’t going to let them down. I got up – choose to find the lesson in the pain – and went on to reach my goal.

My life was never the same.  After that,  I went on to achieve many other goals.

After graduating with a marketing degree, I pursued my interest in working overseas by joining the Peace Corps. I worked in West Africa organizing and developing food cooperatives.   Since then I’ve been to other African nations, Europe and most U.S. states for work or personal interests.

My education includes a B.S. in Marketing, an M.S. in Organizational Behavior, another M.A. in Organization Development and a Ph.D. in Human and Organization Systems.   When I started my doctoral program, I used the inspiration of my entrepreneurial father and leadership and mentoring background of my mother to focus my studies on women’s grassroots and community leadership styles. My dissertation research resulted in finding a unique empowerment leadership style of women who are leaders, mentors, and roles models in their profession, community or personal endeavors.

Over time, life taught me that as the world continues to evolve, every empty experience that makes people say “I never thought I’d see it happen” will be filled by a brave leader who refuses to give up on her dream.

When I decided to use what I’d learned to help others run towards their brilliance, taking the lessons found in their pain to fuel their journey, leadership roles have been in my life ever since.

I’ve shared this information as a keynote speaker and presenter at national and international conferences. I’ve even had the pleasure of delivering two commencement speeches, appear in the media, and serve as a peer reviewer for a prominent small business journal.

In visiting Spain and South Africa, my intercultural awareness of economic development was expanded as I marveled at the leadership abilities of women who live and work in a cornucopia of leadership positions.

As a faculty leader, diversity director, and professional presenter, I’ve gained experiences that are beneficial to others in their leadership pursuits. While serving at a major University, I gained the confidence of my peers to serve as a faculty leader for five years, an experience that let me use my collaborative skills to open communication that helped move the organization to its stated goals with groups that often experienced broad differences of opinions. My leadership role as a diversity specialist broadened horizons for more professionals in public and private organizations and businesses.

I love writing and have multiple published books, an article in a leading leadership manual published by John Wiley publishers, several dozen other published articles, and have coached others to write and publish their works. The great thing is I love work with women from around the world to help them become great business professionals and leaders.

If you’re ready to get the mentoring needed to reach your goals – despite it all – I look forward to supporting you.

The Lessons are In Your Story

When I decided to study women’s leadership, I needed to interview women leaders. I needed to design a way to determine what gives a woman her unique leadership ability.

When I contacted women leaders and asked them about their leadership skills, many couldn’t find a way to identify exactly what it was that gave her the ability to be a leader.

So I decided to take a different approach. I decided to ask the women to tell me their stories.

Having the chance to talk about leadership stories was the key to finding the lessons from women leaders.

The lessons were in the story.

One story was about how a woman had decided to lead the fight for quality education in her community. With a group of other parents, she went to the City Hall to talk to the councilperson.  When the group got there, everyone turned to her to be the spokesperson. That was her moment of becoming a leader. 

Another professional woman related how her workplace needed some innovative ideas to market educational products to an adult population. She knew how to work with this target group because she had taught adult education for years in a past job. Her ideas resulted in a significant increase in sales for the company. This led to her being the leader of a new division in her workplace.

Sometimes it is not easy to describe certain behaviors, such as leadership. But when you hear the stories behind the situation or event, you can find the lessons. Finding lessons in stories can provide a way to mentor others. You can share the steps you took, the insights you’ve gained, and the wisdom that you now put into action.

Women are great storytellers. Have you thought about how you can use your storytelling ability to share leadership lessons with others? Think of how effective you could be when you learn how to find the lesson in the story.

The first step to take is to actually find your story.  Women have a particularly difficult time talking about the things they’ve done and achieved in life.  It seems like bragging to say you’ve done something good.  But learning to identify those good times do several things.

  1. It lets you build your confidence because you see what you’ve accomplished in life.
  1. You become bolder to know that you can share what you’ve accomplished to encourage someone else.
  1. It makes you want to try something else and you move to higher steps.

After speaking to one woman about their leadership story, she said that actually hearing the words come out of her mouth gave her a new perspective on her life.  She felt proud in a positive way.

But what about when telling a story brings up a painful remembrance?  It might seem that you want to hide situations that show the imperfections, pains of set backs that happened in life.  But this can be some of the more powerful lesson you could share.

The Emotions of Memoirs

A hard part about writing memoirs is when you have an emotional reaction to what comes up in the writing. You might want to run away from the memory.  But you can also use this type of writing to help heal old wounds or to find a deeper meaning in what has happened. If the writing is painful, you can stop wring on that topic.  Switch to something more enjoyable.

What about “secrets”

Writing is therapeutic. Some of what you write in an autobiography or memories will be keep confidential for you and you alone. You will even have to decide if what you write should in fact see that light of day. Will you want you favorite aunt to know that you hated her perfume that seemed to cling to you when you gave her a hug? Do you want to put in writing the actions you did when you were a teenagers that until now, no one else knows about but you? Do you really want to share dark family secrets, about yourself or others?  Writings can be seen. Be careful what you put on paper.

You Can’t Write it All

My biggest worry when writing memoirs was that I wouldn’t be able to remember things in order that they happened. But that’s the beauty of the memoir. You do’t have to remember things as they happened. You don’t even have to remember exact dates and time. You record incidences or situations that you remember.

As you write, new thoughts will come up. You can also remember things as you find memories of your life.

When I cleaned my old room in my parents home, I found old writings from diaries and scrapbooks. I found the yearbooks from my high school that prompted many memories. The picture of me and my best friend that was stuck in the bottom of my old dresser drawer.  That drawer was a mess when I was young because I had so many activities going at once. These became the prompts for my stories.

You might find that you are writing short essays sprinkled with poetry. You will have pages with just a “saying” on it. You might want to put down the wisdom that know one else knows you adapted.

Don’t worry about forgetting or not remembering enough.  Just get started. You’ll find you have a lot to write about.  And you can’t write everything about your life. If you recorded every single thing that ever happened in your life you would never finish writing. You want highlights.

With the leaders, some pulled out of feeling like their “time had passed” and started getting involved in their community again.  What happened was that after doing a great feat, many were worn out but didn’t recognize this as a natural reaction to doing something powerful.

Now, by seeing how a leadership event requires a time of healing and rest, these women can empower others to know this truth too.

It takes confidence to tell your story:

  1. Turn Life’s Problems into Inspirational Lessons. Almost any woman at a professional or executive level has endured many hard situations in life.  These situations come from the natural flow of life, caring for others with problems, making decision that bring bad consequences, natural disasters, abuses or other situations. Some problems place a heavy load on your emotions and spirit and keep you from feeling the joy of living.  Making bad mistakes that result in heavy costs sometimes strip a woman of joy.  To live life fully, you have to change your perspective on past emotional and spiritual burdens. Learn to see these events as lessons that can inspire you and others to be more emotionally and spiritually in tune with God and the universe. People are seeking an understanding of how to lift their emotional and spiritual burdens. These people seek understand from others who have experienced similar things. When you realize that your life’s problems have gifted you with the ability to provide inspiration to help others in the world it changes how you perceive your life’s problems. The development of your skills, knowledge, abilities and experiences come from your unique life’s lessons.  Break emotional and spiritual ceilings by coming to terms with your life problems and see how you have been strengthened to benefit others as a result of what you’ve experienced.
  1. Identify Your Value Systems. Values are those life characteristics that really matter to you. They are the deep seated ideas and beliefs that cause you to act as you do and to pursue the goals that you pursue, consciously or unconsciously.  The secret to working consciously is to be able to identify your true values.  The core values of your life will direct how you respond to what life brings. Your mind is at ease when you function within your value system. Say for example one of your values if being with family, but your job requires that you are away from family most of the time. Instead of being peaceful in your mind that what you’re doing is valuable and worth it, you will constantly be questioning yourself and your work. You might not even know why you’re not happy and satisfied.  Knowing your value systems lets you get your life in order so you your mind is at ease. You break the barriers to what keeps you from becoming more productive, happy and successful.  Take time to identify your values on a personal and professional basis.  Then you will be able to use this knowledge to put several area of your life in order.  For instance, you can even manage your time and increase your productivity by working within your values systems. These are incredibly important strategic success secrets that will help you break heavy burdens that impede your rise to success.  Learn to identify you value systems and you will break loads of ceilings at once.

Learn the Process of Forgiveness. The only way to get fully uncluttered in your body, mind, soul, and physical areas is to get rid of what no longer benefits you. That includes not only getting rid of physical and material things that are no longer useful but being able to let go of emotional remembrances, hurts and pain too. That means deciding to forgive, let go and move on. It helps to know that forgiveness is an often misunderstood process. Instead of being something that you have to do immediately, the act of forgiveness is actually a process that can take place over time. When you commit to take the steps to forgive, you gain back parts of your life that you’ve put on hold indefinitely.  Unforgiveness keeps you trapped in the past of an ugly situation that rots away at your very core. Forgiving others as well as yourself, could be the most difficult thing you achieve in your life. But being able to forgive and let go will also be the most powerful move you can make to save your life and become a whole person in the process. Be determined to let go of your deepest hurts, clutter, secrets, hatreds, thoughts, pains, and other hard situations, in any and all forms.  Do this to move fully into your present and future instead of staying in the past. You will break some of the heaviest weights that hang over your head that keep you shadowed under rotting and nasty ceilings. Instead, break free into the sunshine of a new future and glorious possibilities.

Why put it in writing.  People are looking for human relationship.  They want to work with people they know. They are no longer looking for the person who makes them fel that they have been surprised to work with them.

John Nasbitt – Megatrends.  High-touch; High Tech issues.  People are looking for high touch relationships.  Touch people form the heart. Let them know you are a person that has been through situations too; you’ve taken the lessons of life and learned how to overcome. They want to relate t the heart of the person instead of the words only. Everyone has words, but what about sharing who you are, the hurts and troubles.

It takes commitment to put it in writing:

  • Creates a permanent records
  • Makes you vulnerable by revealing your inner thoughts to the world.
  • Clarifies your thoughts and gets them in order

It takes a strategy to make it real.   

  1. Know What’s Going On Around You. Starting a business with long term success potential means knowing what’s going on around you in the world. While you have no control over most of these strategic factors, they will affect your business success. This includes in society, education, politics, economy, financial situation, the competition, worker base and some other areas. You need to recognize how these areas will affect you even before you file a business license to start your business!

Does that surprise you that this is the number one thing you needs do as a strategy for success online?  Well, not only do you need to do this to start an online business, you should do this no matter what type of business you want to start; and the majority of people who start their own business fail to take this strategic step. Unfortunately, this is one reason why so many businesses either fail to get started or fail shortly after starting.

The step is important because these areas can mean having the consumer base necessary to run a successful business. Situations change.  People are still buying things but the economy is tough right now.  Perhaps that great business idea you had last month will no longer be relevant if the consumer group has had a negative impact because of the situation.

In order to be sure your business idea is relevant to the marketplace, keep up with what’s going on around you.  You can’t run a business in isolation. Read newspapers, news magazines, learn about relevant sites on the Internet to tell you what’s going on. This primary strategic step will let you know what type of products and services are needed in the marketplace as well as important emerging trends.

Be ready be flexible. You may have to make some changes to your idea or be more creative about what you want to offer. You might even come up with a new idea or innovation to bring that has never been done before.

Throughout history, tough economic times are when many savvy and creative business people have become millionaires by meeting the needs of society. When you learn to understand what’s going on around you, you will position yourself for success as an online business owner.

  1. Get a Focus. I can hear the moans from all of your with a dozen different idea you want to start in you “online store.” It can be very difficult to hear that you have to get a focus to be a success on the Internet but that’s how it is. Just think of the multiple online stores that exist where you can find any product or service you want. It’s like competing with a Wal-Mart online. It takes a lot of money and marketing power to become a full online store.

Being a success online means finding a focus for your business. The hard part about this is letting go of the idea that everything you want to do would be a success online anyway.  Something’s wouldn’t be.  Taking a strategic view of your business idea helps because you will see how your idea fits into the marketplace. You have to find a business idea that gives something others need, want or desire.

  1. Select a Relevant Product or Service. After you take a look at the situation around you, it’s time to consider what you have to add to the marketplace. Take an assessment of your background and see where you can shine in a business. What could add to a marketplace that either doesn’t exist, does exist but you could do differently or that you can present as a new idea to the marketplace, or that the market really needs at this time?  Look at emerging trends and see where your product or service idea fits in?  Do you have something that is in demand or that will fit the needs of a new trend that will soon hit the market?

 One way to start taking a critical and strategic look at what you have to offer is to study the competition. Find and analyze businesses that are similar to what you want to present. What you are looking for is what the competition is already presenting and how you can distinguish yourself in the marketplace. You don’t have to throw your idea out if you find a lot of competition.  What you need to do is learn how to brand yourself to create a strong brand in the marketplace to set yourself apart.

Take time to work on presenting yourself in a new and unique manner that will let you stick out from the crowd.  Don’t worry if you’re not totally sure about your brand as you start.  A false start is better than no start at all.

  1. Understand Marketing Strategy. Marketing in general fits into either a business online or offline. Marketing is the business activity that puts your product or service in the face of your potential target market group. You determine the exact product or service, your position or brand, how you’re going to present yourself and your pricing structures.  All of these tactics have to be relevant to the target market.

With Internet marketing you will need to develop some basic things to get going which you’ll discover next.  But with internet marketing, remember you can do a lot of marketing for free or for a very low fee.  Before spending a lot of money on Internet marketing study free Internet marketing concepts such as submitting articles to article directories or using some of the business social networking sites such as Squidoo to create a web presence.

  1. Write Your Business Plan. Would you try to go on a business trip without knowing how to get from your home to where you were going? Would you go without even knowing where the meeting was located? Well, that’s what it’s like trying to run your business without a business plan. Business plans give you the directions on how to focus your business. You do have to think things through. It makes you look at your target market, marketing plans, operational concepts, even your finances.

A business plan doesn’t have to be lengthy; it just has to have information that is important for you to have to know how to operate your business.  If you want to develop business that will eventually need financing, a business plan will be a necessity for that.  But for you, just develop the basics of the plan so you will know how to structure and operate your business.

  1. Get Help. You won’t be able to do everything yourself. Even if you enjoy doing it all, eventually it will keep you from getting a lot done. Eventually you will need to start building your online business team. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money to do this. There are multiple freelance sites online where you can put out a n announcement of your business needs and let professional bid got help you.  One of these is elance.com.  another is guru.com.

Another great resource online is a virtual assistant.  This new type of business is s a person who does the type of things and administrative assistant would do for you in the workplace.  You can find va who knowhow to create websites, maintain your mailing list, even do regular contacts with your customers’.

Another resource person will be a good graphics designers.  You will need graphics for your ebooks, and other situations online. Start checking out the work of graphic  artists and other so you will be able to find your teams.

  1. Keep Learning. The internet is ever changing. So will your business. AS the world continues to change you will find that what you learn today will not be a relevant tomorrow.  Everything is going faster.  People now read ebooks on kindles instead of printing them out.  You will need to develop a mindset of a life long learner.  Without that you will soon be out of business as new technologies come in.  Being a life long learning on the web means selecting a professional mentor to help you move you business along.  Even if you feel that you have a handle on how to run your business, trying to do it in isolation will soon grow discouraging.  Hire a coach to keep you online and to make you accountable for your success.  Get involved with a group coaching for a more cost effective alternative.  Another alternative is a mastermind group.  These usually are smaller and a bit more expensive because you will get more personal assistance. Whatever you did, budget learning and coaching into your business in order to stay in business and grow your business.

First I help you clarify your dream or your vision. What exactly do you want in

this area? If you are unsure, as many people are, I have a process to help you

figure it out.

Next we uncover what is holding you back from having what you really want.

We identify any fears, concerns or obstacles that may be in your way and devise

strategies to overcome them.

Then we break your vision into six to eight bite-size manageable chunks called

“Keys to Success.” When you focus on your Keys to Success you will quickly

begin moving towards your dream.

From there, we create specific, measurable, goals and an action plan to achieve

them.

Through our weekly calls, I help keep you accountable, focused and inspired to

execute your plan. The difference between those who “have” and those who

“have not” is the execution of a plan. Many people have great ideas. For success,

you must ACT on them. I help you do that!

And

Take time to find the lessons in your story.  Write out what you’ve accomplished or find something to talk to about it. You will find a power that you may have failed to recognize before when you acknowledge the lessons in your story.

 

Business Leaders Should Write a Memoir

 

When you know how to find the stories of your life to write about, you will be amazed at how much you have to share through a memoir.  What you’ll be doing is simply writing what you know better than anyone else.  Of course, you can keep your business memories to yourself or only share them with a personally selected limited group of people.  But what about the hundreds or even thousands of people that would benefit from know more about how you ran your business or the great ideas you learned along the way?

People love a great story. There’s nothing more exciting than a story about how a person achieved a goal or solved a life problem. Be assured, you have more memories in your business life to write about than you can imagine.

 

  • No one can have your story.  You are a unique person with unique experiences in life. Your business story can only be told by you.
  • Your memoirs provide the benefit of letting you record the meaning and purpose of your business life in writing.
  • You have a right to record your business memories and to let others have the benefit of learning from your business experiences. 

Writing memoirs helps you recall the accomplishments or your life. They also let you review the hard life lessons that have built character along the way. Sharing the events of your life lets others learn from your experiences.

When you write your life with words, you look at your emotions, feeling, decisions, and choices. You understand the road you walked and the path you followed.

Your stories can be a way to honor those who influenced your life along the way. You can see the themes of your life and come to understand how you have made a difference in your world and to the world at large. 

 

When you fail to start writing your memoirs you are taking your life for granted. The best legacy you can pass along to those you care about are the stories you’ve gained throughout your work life. Start today by writing about your business, your challenges and accomplishments.  Tell what you did to achieve your goals. The ideas are endless but the writing doesn’t have to be. It just has to start.

Blog Your Way to Success

Bloggers are using the best marketing concept possible. No question about it, blogs are great for business, both for online business and offline busienss.  Blogging lets you connect with your target market and promote your products quickly and easily.

Blogging is so easy that some people only use a blog and never a website online. You can even start a blog for free with Blogger.com, a free, easy to use blogging service offered by Google.  Using this service can be a great way to market your business.

It only takes three steps to start a blog on blogger. Go to the site, follow the directions and start blogging before the day is over.

What do you write on your blog?

Writing on a blog is called posting. Create posts that explain the features and benefits of your product in a subtle way.  For instance, if you have an information product on raising puppies, you can create posts that give a bit of helpful information.  At the end of the post you can add “for more information” and then provide a link to a page with more extended information.

If you have a physical product, you can create similar posts, giving people reasons to buy your product.  If you happen to sell ipods for instance, create an informative post about the benefits of downing information talks on your ipod. You can add pictures of your product to your post and include a link to the page where your readers can buy the ipods from you

A blogs is a great online communication tool.  It is so easy to post a comment that you will soon find it to be a bit addictive.  You are published immediately when you save your posts.  Keep your readers updated on changes to your website, provide information on new products you’re introducing, and receive feedback on the types of products your customers wish you would develop.

A way to get your target market involved with your blog and to established yourself as an expert is to establish a “question of the week” feature to your blog.  Simply have your readers send in their questions, and then, one day each week, choose one of the questions to answer.  Your readers will look forward to this interactivity and will take note to visit each week to see if their question was chosen.

You can also use Blogger to increase the size of your mailing list by adding a sign up form to your newsletter or other autoresponder list.  Once people are subscribed to your newsletter, you can continue to market to them.

Adding links back to your website on your blog will also help your website gain search engine traffic.  The search engines crawl the Internet, and when a blog site has a lot of links coming into it, the search engines take notice.  This can help your website rise in the results pages when someone performs a search using one of the keywords on your page.

As you get more familiar with blogging, you can add an RSS feed to your blog, which will notify your readers that you have created a new post.  This will keep your readers coming back regularly, and further help your marketing efforts.

Take these easy tips and start blogging immediately. It’s the way to get a presence online without having to know HTML or other intricate website concepts.

Business Plan- Why You Need to Write One

If you have a business and want it to succeed, you need to have a business plan.  It’s as simple as that. A business plan is a document that outlines your business goals and the plan for achieving them. Even if you are working from the kitchen table, you still need a business plan.  A business plan can help you do the following: 

  • Define your business and set goals
  • Create a plan of action
  • Develop your brand
  • Organize your marketing efforts
  • Keep you focused on your business 

When it comes to developing your business, writing out your business plan will help you sort out your ideas and make it easier to identify which ones make the most sense. This will be a great thing when you start coming up with so many business ideas that you get overwhelmed. Your business plan will keep you on track.   

Your business can’t do everything for everyone. Without a business plan you might forget that point. Writing your business plan will let you narrow down which products and services you are going to offer, as well as help you decide which target market to offer them to. 

For example, if you are a professional events planner, you can choose to target market your business to other local businesses and offer to help them organize and put on events to market their businesses.You can market yourself to local residential busiensses and families to help them organize all types of events.. 

You can also market your business online and create online seminars or teleconferences or information products and people can learn from you long distance. Once you have determined who your target market is and how your business is going to help them, you will need to write out your goals and determine your plan of action in achieving them.  

Your business brand will help you achieve recognition among your target market and set you apart from the competition.  Some people can really struggle with determining their brand, and unfortunately, never create one.  Having a business plan will help you create a “big picture” idea of your business.  When you see the big picture, you can determine how you want your customers to see you. 

As you know, there are many different ways to market your business.  Another benefit to having a business plan and being able to see the “big picture” is being able to organize your marketing efforts. 

Your business plan will help you decide how you want to promote your business.  Some examples include marketing to local customers or taking your business global and marketing online.  

Finally, your business plan can keep you focused on your business and your goals.  If someone approaches you about a joint venture project or if you have an idea for a solo project, you can look at your business plan and see if that is something that would enhance your business. By now, it should be pretty obvious that writing a business plan is worth the effort.

Out with the Old!

Do you hang onto writing pieces that no longer have a use in your life? When writing on paper, it’s fairly easy to throw out what doesn’t work. But online it’s a different matter. It is easy to hit the save button and put half finished writings with no direction into a file designed specifically for unfinished work. Hundreds or even thousands of words could be sitting in your online files, clogging your writing files, and clogging your mind. You tend to focus on old titles you feel you “should” finish instead of getting to the fresh ideas that want to come out.

Guess what!

It’s alright to erase or delete stuff that is just not working. It’s alright to get focused on your writing and to start over.

Today could be the time to go through your files of unfinished projects and delete those that just don’t work. Delete

*The ones that will never get finished.
*The ones that make you angry for starting them because you don’t like the direction they’re taking you in.
*The writing that gives you excuses not to get finished with your real projects

If you’re not sure if you want the writing or not, make a printed copy and put it in your writing folder, binder or where ever you keep your printed copies. Download it to a CD for “works in progress” and file the disc away. If the writings want to be reborn later to fit into a piece that is working, or you fall in love with the topic again, you will have the pieces. If not, you can discard them all over again later.

After clearing some files, put your timer on and get ready to write for 20 minutes.

“If you had $50,000 to go off and write about anything, what would be the topic and where would you go to write about it?”

Tell us about it in the comments.

Business License: The In’s and Out’s of Getting One

Apply for Your Business License

Applying for a business license is something you should do as soon after you decide to start your business as possible.  There are different requirements for getting a business license at the federal, state/city and county levels.  Each location is different in those requirements and there are even some locations that may not require you to have a business license, but you need to determine what your business requires by following and completing the steps below. 

Find loads of information on starting your business, including applying for a business license by visiting the Small Business Administration (http://www.sba.gov).   

There you will find links to help you determine, what if any licensing requirements there are for your business.  You’ll be able to determine what type of license your business requires based on the type of business you own.  Just a few of the common licenses include: 

Basic Business License

This is a basic business license that says you are allowed by law to do business in your locality.  Some places require it, others don’t so be sure to check with your local and state taxing authorities to determine your individual case. 

Occupational & Professional License

There are certain professions that require you to carry a special license in order to conduct business.  Some of these businesses include:  

  • Accountants
  • Doctors
  • Barbers
  • Security
  • Professionals
  • Real Estate Agents 
  • Licensing Based On the Type of Products You Sell 

Tax Registration

One of the biggest reasons a business license is required is for tax purposes.  The type of business you run, along with other factors, will determine your tax rates at the state and federal level.  It will also help to determine certain taxes, such as sales tax, etc. that you may be exempt from paying. 

Trade or Doing Business As (DBA) Name

Many states require a special license if you are a sole proprietor doing business under a name other than your name. 

Employer Registration

If you have, or plan to in have in the future, employees this is definitely a must to check into.  You can find more information about what all is required of you as an employer by checking with your states Department of Revenue or Labor. 

A business license is something that, if you’re required to have one, you should acquire as soon as possible.  Some states can and will penalize business owners who operate a business without the proper license, so don’t delay in finding out what your business needs.  Many states have business workshops to help make certain owners have everything they need in place.  Check your state or http://www.sba.gov to find one near you.

Morning Irritations

Every night I want to get things organized so I can get right to writing in the morning. I’m irritated this morning because I can’t find a pen. Does that ever happen to you? Here you are a writer and can’t find your primary tool? What a time waster.

Right on my desk, I have a black, mesh pen holder that I really like. I try to keep it filled with pens but it’s so convenient that I tend to grab a pen, carry it with me, and inevitably, end up with an empty holder. Periodically I have to go through the house, gather my pens and put them back in. So this morning is a gathering morning and I’m irritated because I want to get to my writing. Tonight, I will be sure the pen holder has pens in it so tomorrow morning I can get right to the work.

Do you have something that really irritates you in the morning related to your writing? Write about what you can do to control that.

Start Writing

Writers write is a saying most writers recognize. “Doing” writing is the part that takes discipline. Writers need to write everyday in order to hone their craft. Daily writing also helps to crack through writers block.

You don’t have to have writer’s block. You WILL have writer’s block if you don’t write everyday. This is the coaching blog for creative baby boomers who write. It is for those of you that follow my creativity coaching.

What You’ll Find Here
You will find writing prompts, exercises, and my responses to my daily writings. Follow my thoughts as creativity coach as I blog my writing experiences. I am commited to writing daily. Write along with me in your own forum and create your legacy in words.

Write Web Articles That Work For You

Learn to write good web articles and you will be able to gain publicity for your online business or offline business. But just writing the article isn’t enough. You also have to know what to do with them. This includes writing articles and submitting them to reprint directories.

Website owners and bloggers visit article directory sites to access free content for their own sites. When they publish an web article you have submitted, they will include a link back to your site, which will drive a lot of traffic to you.

You can find many article reprint directories on the web. A few to try are www.ladypens.com, www.isnare.com and www.articlepros.com. To find more, simply perform a Google search using the term “article reprint directory.”

Some sites require you to register with them before you can submit an article, while some do not. Each site will have its own specific guidelines as to the type of articles they will accept. Make sure you familiarize yourself with each site’s specific instructions.

You will see a link on the site that says something to the effect of “submit your article” or “add your article.” When you click that link, you will be sent to a page containing a form that will allow you to copy and paste your article. You will also enter personal information, such as your name. Some people use their real name and some chose to use a fake name, also known as a pen name.

Always take good advantage of the area titled “author bio box” or “reference box.” This is where you can put detailed information about you, your website or speciality. The website owner or blogger who publishes your article will include the information you include, so make sure you include some information about your website and your URL.

If the article you are submitting refers to information found on a specific page of your website, refer to that page. For example, if you are submitting an article about online marketing send the readers to www.yourname.com/onlinemarketing instead of just a general domain.

This will allow you to receive highly targeted traffic which will increase your affiliate conversion rates and profits. Use web article writing to increase your online marketing and you will have a key to great internet marketing.

Learn how to write articles that get results and know where to submit your article wtih the Slam Dunk Articles Wrting course. http://www.slamdunkarticles.com