An Essential Network for Small Business Success

Hear how SCORE helped this couple realize their entrepreneurial dream.

This post is aligned with a network of sites interested with the intersection of small business, the philanthropic sector and government in creating healthy and sustainable communities.

Find additional information and resources on nonprofit information, educational grants and Civic Engagement programs from around the world.

Tips And Tricks For Becoming A Great Leader

If you want some tips for being a better leader, you have come to the right place. You can now learn what it takes to become a leader others can look up to. Everyone must step up to lead at some point.

Do not assume that workers are able to read your mind. You have to give them exacting details on how they need to complete any project you present to them. This will help foster a willingness in employees to come back to ask questions when necessary.

TIP! Never assume that your employees read minds. Make sure they understand exactly what’s expected of them.

A smart way to show more leadership is to be decisive. Because you’re leading others, there are a lot of decisions you will have to make. If your team has a few different opinions about solutions to problems, you’ll need to decide on the solution that is going to benefit the entire team rather than just a few people.

Great leaders are inspirational and they welcome creativity. Creative thinking along with the right risks put you in good positions. Go over all the different things that make creativity possible, and use them to your advantage. Do not hesitate to embrace innovation, even if it does not have immediate application. Help your team use their ideas to complete the project.

TIP! An effective leader is able to inspire creativity. Taking risks and thinking outside the box can lead to bigger and better things.

Great leaders are transparent about issues that arise in the company. While covering up problems in business used to be typical, nowadays a leader will be open about them. Why? Today’s world is highly communicative. No one can hide a problem forever, eventually it will be exposed. So, it is better to control the message rather than having to respond to it. Successful leaders have excellent communication skills.

Good leaders should focus on the future. You need to be able to look ahead, see what is coming, and plan accordingly. You will not always be sure of what is going to happen, but over time this will become one of your skills. Set goals for yourself and develop a plan to achieve them.

TIP! The future is the focus of a great leader. You must look ahead to see what’s coming and plan accordingly.

Always be ethical. This is important for any business that wants to be successful. When customers know you are looking out for their best interest, they will remain faithful to you. Having a standard of morality in your company will give your employees a guide that they should follow.

When you are a leader, try focusing on the people while allowing the work to do well on its own. Work on being inspiring and encourage those around you. Don’t micro-manage, instead let the team do the work they are tasked with.

TIP! When you are leading, focus on those involved and work will be completed almost effortlessly. Encourage and inspire coworkers.

Tenacity is a characteristic crucial to leadership. When things start to go wrong, the team is going to look at you to see how they should be reacting. You must remain focused on the end result at all times. Your persistence will give the group all they need to become motivated.

Set goals for your whole business. All people need to work towards something, and leaders can provide annual goals to each employee. Never let your goals fall by the wayside. Meet on the goals at least monthly, and hold everyone accountable as a team for reaching them.

TIP! Make sure that your entire organization has set goals to accomplish. Everyone wants to work toward something, and leaders aim to encourage their employees to achieve them.

Improving your leadership capabilities requires a thirst for knowledge. Seek advice from your coworkers and listen to their ideas with an open mind. These people can help make suggestions that fix issues, execute plans and improve strategies.

The group you hire to build your business should be diverse. You will get a much more expansive range of ideas and perspectives from different age groups, as well as from different educational and cultural backgrounds. Don’t hire your clone. Your ability to innovate will be severely restricted. Also, your weaknesses and those of your employees could cause your company to fail.

TIP! Employ a diverse set of employees to grow your business. Having different educations, ages and cultures can give you different perspectives.

Preparation is key before speaking to a team. Have an idea of which questions they could ask you. Think about how you will answer them. When you’re able to answer questions, the team will have more respect for you. This is also a good time saver.

Always follow through on what you promise. A good leader always keeps his promises. Should there be obstacles preventing you from meeting your promise, explain why to those involved. You will lose respect of those around if you back out of your commitments or change your plans on a moment’s notice, unless you can convince them it’s the right call.

TIP! Be true to your word. Any leader should always follow through on the promises they make.

Never allow yourself to be overcome with the desire to win. With all the technology of the Internet, breaking down stats and goals is much easier. People who are excellent leaders do this to stay on track and see how far they need to go. Rather than focusing on just the numbers, it is important that you first teach employees how to succeed and develop that winning attitude. Eventually, everything else will fall into place.

When an employee makes an error, an effective leader will turn it into a teachable moment rather than offer criticism. Talking over the problem with the workers provides a great learning opportunity for everyone.

TIP! When people make mistakes, good leaders use those mistakes as a teachable moment, instead of taking time to criticize. Discuss the mistake, what went wrong, how things could be different and look for input.

Use the advice you learned, set goals, and visualize yourself leading others. Only you will be able to control the degree of improvement you can ultimately attain. Know that you have answered some specific questions, move forward and allow your leadership skills to shine.

As a leader, you should not be alone. A good leader helps the group to grow in a positive manner. As you lead, bring everyone together to share ideas and make decisions. Using this technique allows you to freely lead.

TIP! A good leader is not alone. Many others can offer help to help the organization grow and prosper.

Small Business Administration Background

The Small Business Administration was established in 1953. Since that time the agency has dispensed millions of dollars in loans and loan guarantees, contracts, consulting assistance and other programs for small business across the United States.

This post is part of a network of sites interested with the intersection of small business, the philanthropic sector and government in creating healthy and sustainable communities.

Find additional information and resources on small business grants and loans, home buyer programs and Community Foundation programs from around the world.

Aging Tips That Will Help You Along The Way

Aging is something that many people are not sure how to take. By reading this article, you will learn tips on how you can age gracefully and naturally. You will also learn how you can prevent growing older in some ways and how you can control how fast you age.

Having healthy relationships and maintaining them is a very important thing to have for healthy aging. Being an active community member has been linked to increasing your years and living healthier. For greater benefits from social interactions, focus on intimacy with the people you can trust.

TIP! Healthy interpersonal relationships are important for aging well. Being an active community member has been linked to increasing your years and living healthier.

Strong relationships are important to age well. Staying involved and active within your community can not only make you healthier, but it can lengthen your life. Having intimate relationships with people you want around all the time and can tell anything to in society is a great benefit to have.

Don’t spend too much time thinking about how you measure up. Your doctors are paid for worrying about height, age, and weight. If you dwell on how old you are, how much you weigh and how much you are shrinking through the years, you are going to miss out on the real things in life that keep you young.

TIP! Do not be too concerned with numbers. Your age, weight, and height are all just numbers, so let your doctor fret about them.

Being open to new things is a good way to keep you brain busy. The elderly are often looked up to for wisdom, so don’t ever stop educating yourself. Take a class at your community college or do some puzzles, they will keep your mind active.

A balanced, healthy diet is critical as you get older. Eating healthy requires that you eat a large variety of fruits, meats, vegetables and grains. This gives your body the essential nutrients that it needs not only to survive but to thrive.

TIP! Most importantly, make sure you eat a balanced diet. Consume plenty of fruits and vegetables, fiber and whole grain and keep fats and cholesterol to a minimum.

Eating a healthy diet will help you stay younger. Emphasize fruits and vegetables, as well as fiber and whole grains, while getting rid of fats and cholesterol. This gives your body all the nutrients and vitamins it needs to be strong and healthy.

Don’t stop learning new beauty tips for healthy skin. Learning should happen all throughout your life.

TIP! To be healthy and age well, keep learning. You are never too old to learn.

Always strive to learn new things, and embrace new experiences to keep yourself healthy and youthful. Knowledge is a great way to keep yourself young.

Avoid foundation and powders if you want to save your skin as you age. This is made doubly true as you age since your skin needs even more hydration. Try enhancing your looks with other types of make-up, like eyeliner and mascara.

TIP! Powder makeup is not good for your skin as you get older. This makes your skin especially vulnerable as you get older when your skin needs hydration more than ever.

As you age, the home becomes a source of comfort. Make your space your own; it will make it more comforting to come home to after a bad day. Your home is always there waiting to welcome you back.

You should enjoy your journey through your life. Utilize the same goal-setting skills you used with your kids when they were young. Achieving these goals will help keep you feeling young and proud.

TIP! You should enjoy your journey through your life. If you take the time to set milestones like you did for your kids as they were growing, you will find that when you reach those milestones you will feel the same pride as you did all of those years ago.

Try and avoid powder makeup and foundation, as these products can cause you to look older. Since hydration is even more important to your skin as you getting older, this type of makeup gets even worse for your skin the older you get. Add easy-to-use cosmetics like mascara, eyeliner, and lip gloss into your anti-growing older repertoire.

Don’t forget about the health of your eyes while aging. Your vision will worsen a little as you age, but regular eye exams will help catch diseases like glaucoma and cataracts before they become a big problem.

TIP! You want to pay attention to your eyes when you age. The quality of your eyesight will deteriorate as you age, but if you see an eye doctor regularly, you might avoid any diseases and keep your eyes working the best they can.

Try to surround yourself with people who have positive outlooks and cheerful demeanors. Studies prove that smiling and laughing reduce wrinkles and help you to look younger. Hang out with friends that you will have a good time with, not those who are downers.

Takes steps to stay away from people that like to focus on the negative and spend your time with happy people. Studies prove that smiling and laughing reduce wrinkles and help you to look younger. Spend as much time as possible doing things you enjoy with people who make you laugh.

TIP! Don’t hang around grouch, negative people.Surround your self with positive, cheerful friends instead.

For a lot of people, we tend to resist the fact that we are getting older. Using the above tips, you can unlock the secret to aging well. These tips will help you to avoid a few the negative areas of growing older and give you a little control over the whole process.

Minimize exposure to extreme temperatures. If you stay exposed to the elements for too long, your skin will suffer. This may lead not only to severe diseases such as skin cancer but also to premature aging.

TIP! Don’t go to environmental extremes. When you’re out in the sun or in a really cold environment for a long time, you could potentially damage your skin.

SBA Resources for Women-Owned Businesses

The Small Business Administration has a variety of offerings to assist woman entrepreneurs start and grow and their business endeavors. This latest video provides an in introduction to how the SBA can help you.

This post is part of a network of sites interested with the intersection of small business, the philanthropic sector and government in creating healthy and sustainable communities.

Find additional information and resources on small business grants and loans, home buyer programs and Community Foundation programs from around the world.

Stop Letting Others Lead Your Life With These Top Leadership Tips

A leader who is respected is one that will go far; caring for the team will ensure this. Strong leaders help others develop their own leadership skills. Delegation is key, and this article is going to provide you with a few more things that you should know.

Always make moral choices as a leader. Ensure your decisions coincide with your convictions. Don’t make decisions you will regret later. Do whatever you think is right.

TIP! Good morals should never go out the door when you’re a leader. Make sure that any decisions that you make will sit right with you.

Communicate the company’s vision. Let your company’s mission statement guide you by incorporating it into your routine. Present your vision, but be sure to let your employees know how they can each contribute to achieving it. It’s a great way for providing direction and building relationships with your team.

Be transparent about possible problems when you can. It used to be that hiding business problems was the norm, but now great leaders do the opposite. How come? Communication has become key in today’s world. The truth will come out whether you like it or not. So, it is better to control the message rather than having to respond to it. This is the attitude shared by effective leaders.

TIP! Stay transparent. Hiding issues used to be what businesses did, but smart leaders now go the opposite direction.

Keep sight of those principles, such as honesty, that you hold dear. When you need to make a decision, make sure that you’ll be able to live with it. Don’t make a decision that will leave you upset or guilty. Some people might have different morals from yours, but you must follow your own conscience.

Make sure you let your team know that you appreciate them greatly. It does not take long to write a note of thanks, but it might mean the world to someone who’s working for you. That brief acknowledgment can turn a whole day around, boosting a mood, and is absolutely free.

TIP! Are you the leader of a group? Be sure they’re aware of how appreciative you are of them. It doesn’t take but a moment to leave a little note to show a worker you appreciate them.

Don’t do anything shady or devious. Keep your promises if you want others to trust you. If you make a claim about having the best service available, you need to back it up with actual results.

Being tenacious is a highly regarded leadership quality. When problems arise, the entire team will look to you to gauge their own reactions. You must be able to optimistically seek team goals despite all obstacles. Your tenacity and persistence will help keep your team on task.

TIP! Tenacity is a characteristic crucial to leadership. If anything bad happens, your entire team will turn to you for guidance.

Your team is going to judge you by your actions. Their opinions of you is affected by who gets assigned vital projects, and by who you fire, hire and promote. Opting to show favoritism instead of finding praise for all employees based on individual accomplishments can be detrimental.

Make sure that you have goals set for your business as a whole. Everyone wants to work toward something, and leaders aim to encourage their employees to achieve them. Be sure not to set up goals and then leave them alone. At least once a month there should be a review of set goals and what is needed in order to reach them.

TIP! Set some goals and have missions that your whole company can work towards. All people need to work towards something, and leaders can provide annual goals to each employee.

Do more listening than talking. Good leaders need to learn to hear. Pay attention to your employees’ opinions. If they gripe or praise you, then listen up. Learn from each of your workers, and hear what they’re saying about buyers and products. You never know what you might found out.

Build your team with diversity in mind. Having people from all walks of life on your side should give you a renewed perspective. Avoid hiring lots of people that are the same as you. That would just limit creativity. It may also lead to a company that fails based on your weaknesses.

TIP! Employ a diverse set of employees to grow your business. It’ll give you a wide array of perspectives and ideas.

As an effective leader, it is necessary to be aware of your strengths and weaknesses. If you are too sure of yourself, then chances are you will eventually fail. Work on your weaknesses to become a strong leader.

You have to recognize your weaknesses and strengths. Becoming overconfident and dwelling on your abilities will make it easier to fail spectacularly. Pay attention to areas where you can enhance your leadership skills.

TIP! You should identify strengths and weaknesses. Being too confident in your lesser abilities sets you up for failure.

Integrity is one of the most important qualities of effective leadership. You must show integrity by making the right decisions whether people are looking or not. Without integrity, other workers will not trust you. If you have integrity, your team will follow you to the ends of the earth.

Mean everything you say. To be a good leader, one must be accountable for how they conduct themselves. You are the heart of the company, and what you do and say reflects on the entire business. Take responsibility for your mistakes and learn from them. There is nobody to fix the issues but you.

TIP! Stand by what you say. Leadership means that you have to be held accountable for what you say and do.

No one wants to be seen as an incompetent leader. Figure out what to stay away from and know what being a good leader means. A burning desire to always do things right and keep learning is what separates good leaders from the bad. It’s up to you to decide what to do.

One of the best leadership skills to develop is listening to people who work under you. They usually have helpful ideas. Once you are sure they have heard you, listen for their echoes. This may help you reach your dreams of success.

TIP! Listening to your team is one of the more important skills to have as a leader. They might have some insight or foresight about the project that can help the entire team.

Looking For Tips About Public Speaking? You’ve Come To The Right Place!

Do you hate public speaking? You are in good company. Many people avoid it like the plague. Luckily, the advice that follows can help you have more confidence if you find the need to speak in front of others.

You must not think that just because you are talking, people are listening. Strive to find ways to engage them. You can almost liken a speech to giving a dramatic performance.

TIP! Don’t assume that people will automatically know what you mean. You have to get their attention and hold on to it.

While speaking in public, you cannot assume that people are going to understand what you are talking about. You need to fight for their attention and respect. You are performing for them, and speaking confidently to win them over is key to achieving the desired results.

Prepare in advance the best that you can before a speech. Be aware of all you would like to say. If you’re unsure of a fact, do your research before adding it to your speech. Have an outline of your speech on paper so you can refer to it while giving your speech. Practice the remarks as many times as needed, until you can say them by heart. The more time you take to be prepared, the more confident you will be while speaking.

TIP! Preparation is key when it comes to making a good impression when speaking in public. Know what you want to say.

Make sure to understand what you are saying. Even if your speech is memorized, knowing key facts and elements will help tremendously. Insert them and gauge how your audience reacts to them. You might also find this information comes in handy when it’s time to answer questions.

Once you have initially memorized your speech, practice it repeatedly. Work on issues where you lose your flow. Be sure to practice your pace and breathing. Leave a little bit of open space in case you’re interrupted, hopefully by a round of applause. Try to practice using the equipment at the location where you will be delivering your speech.

TIP! After you know your speech inside and out, practice it! Speaking it out loud often will allow you to make tweaks as you see the need. Try to maintain calm breathing during the speech.

When delivering a speech, always face your audience. Don’t get distracted by whatever else is happening. You want to make your audience see your point, which means they need your complete attention.

Make sure you are acquainted with your audience. Ask about the people that are going to be the audience. If possible, greet them as they enter and ask their name. Practice their names in your mind. Include some of the people in your speech, and this will give it a much more friendly tone.

TIP! Know who your audience is. If you can, try to learn who will be listening to you.

One method to improve your effectiveness when speaking in public is to relate a true story. Give a brief description of your story beforehand. Your story should sound very credible. Be sure you use true life events in order to sound really authentic.

If you notice that you left something out, simply press on. Stopping during the speech to return to the point may cause you to go off the rails. If you don’t mention it, the audience will never know you overlooked something.

TIP! If you notice that you left something out, simply press on. If you stop abruptly to backtrack to the missing section, the whole speech might be compromised.

Get to know the room in which you are going to speak publicly. See the distance that your voice will carry without a microphone. Try out any equipment you will be using. Try learning to use visual aids, if they’re available. Consider the amount of eye contact that you must make with the crowd.

Bring the audience to your side, and then begin speaking. Smile and shake hands when you enter. This will make the audience members more receptive to your speech.

TIP! Make the audience like you before you give your speech. Smile while they’re walking into the room, and give a friendly handshake or two.

If public speaking makes you anxious, practice doing deep breathing. You can gain control of your nerves by taking several deep breaths before you go onstage. Inhale for a count of four, then exhale for a count of five. Repeat this breathing technique five times to help calm your nerves.

Practice your speech as much as you possibly can. Try practicing in front of mirrors, using hand gestures, and facial expressions for making points. Have friends or family members give feedback. This will assist you as you make important improvements and get ready to deliver your speech.

TIP! Continue to practice your speech so that you are at ease with it. Practice in front of a mirror where you can try using various hand gestures and facial expressions to help make your points.

Have you always dreaded speaking in public, even in school? Do you have points that you would like to make to others but just feel too nervous to speak up? Now you can speak in public without any fear any longer.

Give a great ending to your speech. The ending sticks in people’s minds more than any other part of your speech. Make sure that the speech flows well to the end, and don’t make the end boring.

TIP! Give a great ending to your speech. Although the whole speech is important, what people remember the most is the ending.

The Creative Role That One CDFI Plays in Impact Investing

Antony Bugg-Levine, CEO of the Community Development Financial Institution Nonprofit Finance Fund, manages $80 million of impact investments. He is also the author of Impact Investing: Transforming How We Make Money While Making a Difference.

This post is part of a network of sites interested with the intersection of small business, the philanthropic sector and government in creating healthy and sustainable communities.

Find additional information and resources on small business grants and loans, home buyer programs and Community Foundation programs from around the world.

Small Business Development Centers – An Introduction

Small Business Development Centers are partnerships between universities and the Small Business Administration, to provide management and technical assistance to businesses on a very large scale.

This post is part of a network of sites interested with the intersection of small business, the philanthropic sector and government in creating healthy and sustainable communities.

For more information on small business grant and home ownership programs visit TopGovernmentGrants.com.

Struggling To Maintain Proper Fitness Plans? Try These Ideas!

“Fitness” should not be a distant goal you keep on a pedestal. It’s not something that you will do “eventually.” That said, the act of getting more fit doesn’t mean your life has to be turned upside down in order to do it. All you need to do is make some small changes in your lifestyle. The below article will show you how.

Purchase time with a trainer so you get the motivation you need to start working out. Find a trainer that will help you plan and stick to a workout. Although your first gym session can be scary, you can breeze right through it by hiring a professional to get you started. This will allow you to create an ideal plan that you can follow.

TIP! If you’ve never worked out, consider buying a personal training session. A professional trainer will help you set your workout goals and areas that need addressing; he or she will also make recommendations for a workout routine.

Purchase a new gym outfit; it will give you a confidence boost and remind you of your fitness targets. Even one new article of clothing gives you something to fashion for your friends and maybe encourage a new trip to the gym.

You should set goals in your fitness routine because they will motivate your and keep you working towards specific points of achievement. A personal goal that encourages you to overcome obstacles can be a powerful tool. A goal also discourages quitting and shirking because it makes you think of your fitness program as an ongoing process – a process you are not finished with yet.

TIP! You can stay motivated by creating personal goals. This will put you in a frame of mind to put in 110% rather than quitting at the first sign of trouble.

Counting calories is a great way to stay fit. The number of calories you take in every day will determine weather you’re on track to gain or lose weight. When you make an effort to record how many calories you are eating rather than guessing, you can get fit more easily and quickly.

Do not do more than an hour of weight training. Muscles start to become very fatigued after an intense workout that lasts longer than an hour. With this in mind, don’t do multi-hour weight lifting sessions.

TIP! Limit your weight lifting time to one hour. If you exercise with weights beyond an hour, you can damage your muscles.

Simple push-ups can do wonders to tone your triceps. Well, not quite average. Instead of the traditional style, a nice angle at roughly 45 degrees with your palms is much better practice. This modified pushup is the most effective way to get those triceps strong and toned.

An excellent investment for people who are determined to improve their current level of fitness is a personal trainer. Personal trainers have a lot of knowledge that you don’t, and can be extremely motivational. Personal trainers don’t mesh with everyone’s style, but they can have a huge effect on a person’s fitness results.

TIP! For someone who demands significant, sustainable results, a personal trainer is well worth the investment. A personal trainer will have professional insight and will give you motivation to stick to your exercise routine.

Don’t just look at the obvious when you are considering a fitness routine. Many different activities are available to participate in that will give you an excellent workout without stepping foot in a gym. This is so important, because you will want to stay motivated, and to do that, you will want to be certain you are doing something you like doing.

If you are looking to strengthen your leg muscles, try doing wall sits. Start by finding an empty wall that fits your body. Stand with your back to the wall, approximately 1 1/2 feet away from it. While bending your knees, lean back until you touch the wall with your entire back. After that you want to keep bending your knees so that your thighs are level to the floor, ending up so it looks like you’re sitting. Maintain the squatting position until you can no longer maintain it.

TIP! A fast and effective way to increase strength in your legs is doing wall sits. Find a place that is large enough for your body.

Strength Training

Do you want to get the most out of your workout routine? Try doing stretching, as it has been shown to increase strength by as much as 20 percent. Between exercises you should stretch each muscle that has just been worked for twenty or even thirty seconds. Your workout will be improved tenfold by the simple act of stretching.

TIP! Do you want to make your workouts super effective? If you stretch, you can improve your workout immensely. Between exercises you should stretch each muscle that has just been worked for twenty or even thirty seconds.

You can do some as much strength training as needed to meet your goals. To get bigger, you want to limit the amount of strength training exercises you complete on a regular basis. If you want to be leaner with more defined muscles, increase the number of strength training sessions.

Have you ever thought how chin-ups could be made easier? Changing how you perceive them can help. Think of yourself pulling your elbows downward instead of lifting yourself up. Mind tricks like these will make executing chin-ups easier and it will enable you to do a lot of them.

TIP! Do you find chin-ups difficult? If you change your thinking about how to do them it can help. Imagine pulling your elbows towards the ground instead of imagining you are pulling yourself up.

This article will give you some great ideas on how you can be a healthier and happier you. Even if you’re already in shape, using some of the tips shared here can help amp up your results. Fitness should never be the end goal, but rather, the journey it requires to get there.

Most people think of fitness as a physical pursuit, but it can have even farther-reaching benefits. Your emotional health will vastly improve if you have a good daily workout regimen. When you’re working out your body will release endorphins which will help give you a bit of euphoria. Also, by working out you improve your self image and consequently become more confident. Therefore, a couple of workouts can make you happy.

TIP! There is more to fitness then just physical benefits. By starting a regular exercise routine, you may enhance your emotional health, too.