New Start Up Business Guide to Bookkeeping

(Shared by Ryan Mapes, Program Leader, Business Development Network, OSU South Centers)

By Bob Mason, Tax Buzz

When you embark on a new business venture, your focus is likely on the service or product that you’re providing, and not on the record-keeping responsibilities that come with the territory. Still, as nice as it would be to set aside things like general ledgers and accounting, they are an essential element of making your business a success, so it is important that you have a good grasp of the bookkeeping that needs to be done.

What Bookkeeping Tasks Need to be Completed?

Keeping good records serves a number of purposes. It lets you keep track of the health of your business at a glance. It also provides you with the data that you need to submit to the federal and state government every year at tax time. The more accurate and complete your financial records are, the better the information that will be available for both purposes.

Comprehensive bookkeeping will contain information about your revenues, your profits, and how much money is flowing out of your business for expenses, wages and other transactions.  Being able to easily extract this information will definitely prove to be a benefit – you just have to decide how to go about it. It is a responsibility that can be outsourced to a small business accountant, or you can take it on yourself. There are advantages to both strategies – it can take some time to learn the process, but keeping your own books will ensure that you are always aware of your business’ health. By the same token, letting a professional do the job will free you up to concentrate on what you do best and are most interested in.

Read more … 

Half of Millennials Want to Start a Business: Here’s How to Get Going

(Shared by Brad Bapst, Director, Small Business Development Center, OSU South Centers)

By Kali Geldis NAV

If you were born between 1977 and 1995, there’s over a 50% chance that you would start your own small business if you knew where to get help to make it happen.

America’s SBDC, the face of a nationwide network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), collaborated with the Center for Generational Kinetics to better understand how different generations view entrepreneurship. The findings indicated that millennials were especially eager to start businesses of their own, but there were some things standing in their way.

Millennials stated that they’d like help writing a business plan, and they rate money high on the list of things holding them back from starting a business. In fact, 45% of the study respondents said that finding capital to start a business was their biggest barrier. That’s not a huge shocker — there are more than 44 different types of business financing out there, and they come with unique interest and fee structures.

Here are five tips that can help any millennial, no matter their entrepreneurial dream, get started. 

1. Make Sure You’re Ready to Start a Business of Your Own

Don’t be in too big of a hurry to become your own boss. Make sure you’re ready to take this giant step. Ask yourself these questions:

• Do you want to start a business for the right reasons? Don’t start a business because you’re frustrated with your job search or you’re in a job you hate. Make sure you’re running toward your dream, not searching for a hiding place.

• Do you have financial resources to support the startup period? One of the first things you’ll work on is establishing business credit and obtaining initial financing, but those things probably won’t happen on day one. Make sure you have the resources to support yourself until the business generates a paycheck for you.

2. Create a Plan

You need a written business plan no matter how wonderful your idea is for your new company. Creating this plan will teach you a great deal about how to run your business. Put it in writing so that you can revisit it often and update it as situations change.

You can write the plan yourself. If you’re not an expert at writing business plans, there are free resources to help you. Look up your local SBDC or the closest resource provided by the Small Business Administration. They offer free consulting.

3. Set Up the Best Company Structure

There are a variety of company structures you can use, from LLCs to S-Corps. Seek professional advice from your accountant and lawyer to ensure you make the right choice.

4. Get a Small Business Startup Loan (If Needed)

If your business plan calls for obtaining startup funds to support initial growth, look into your options as soon as possible. Many small business loans are reserved for companies that have a business history because they’ve been in operation for a couple years. Make sure you understand if it’s possible to fund your startupwith outside funds.

5. Establish Credit for Your Business

Even if you don’t need startup funding, the odds are that you will need financing at some point to expand your company and grow. The most common reason for needing funds is to take advantage of growth opportunities that require more cash than you have in reserves. Make sure that you establish credit for your business before you need it. (You can check your personal and business credit scores for free on Nav to get a full picture of your business credit profile.)

If you’re an entrepreneurial millennial, take advantage of all the resources that are available to help you succeed in starting your own business.

Keeping Good Records

(Submitted by Melissa Carter, Business Development Specialist, Small Business Development Center, OSU South Centers)

January is typically the month we all try to start fresh.  New resolutions, new goals, and new opportunities.  January is the perfect month to continue or start keeping good records for your business. Why keep records? Here’s some reasons for keeping good records:

  • Detail tracking – Whether it’s customers, sales, or inventory, these details help run your operations smoothly.
  • Planning – Keeping good records helps anticipate seasonality of your business. You can run a sale this March to get customers in the door if you know last March was slow.
  • Tax Prep – There’s no need to scramble around at the last minute to get your tax paperwork in order. Maintain those records that you know you’ll have to report quarterly or annually for federal, state and local requirements.
  • Legal Compliance – Having a good record system of your contacts, leases, agreements with suppliers, licenses, permits and insurance just allows your business to run seamlessly. If a problem arises, you’ll be able to show the documents necessary to keep everything on the up and up.
  • Payroll and Personnel – If you have employees, there are numerous records you are required to keep – even after your employee leaves your business.

 

If you already keep good records for your business, great!  Keep it up!  If you are not up to par, don’t stress!  Start this year fresh and then build upon that.

Three Important Business Skills They Don’t Teach You In School

(Shared by Ryan Mapes, Manager, Endeavor Center and Program Leader, Business Development Network, OSU South Centers)

This short article explores three areas in which any business owner or entrepreneur can improve to make a positive impact on daily management tasks and operations.

Three Important Business Skills They Don’t Teach You In School:
Communicating, Multitasking and Paying Attention to Small Details.

Originally posted on March 3, 2016
on entrepreneur.com
Written by guest writer:
Ken Dunn, CEO and Founder of ReadersLegacy.com, Author, Speaker and Publishing Industry Advocate

November 16, 2016 – Introduction to QuickBooks

(Shared by Kimberly Roush, Program Assistant, Ohio Cooperative Development Center and Business Development Network, OSU South Centers)

11-16-2016-intro-to-quickbooksThe Business Development Program of the Community Action Committee of Pike County, the Pike County Career Technology Center, and the OSU Small Business Development Center are offering a one-day Introduction to QuickBooks Workshop on Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. at the OSU Endeavor Center in Piketon, Ohio.

The workshop is designed to teach the basic features of QuickBooks to record and track your business transactions. This course is designed for persons who have no prior knowledge of how to use QuickBooks, or for persons who are familiar with the software and want to learn about the features and functionality of QuickBooks.

For more information and to obtain a registration form, contact Lisa Pfeifer or Patty Russell at 740-289-2371 or toll free at 1-866-820-1185.

Teamwork, it’s not rocket science…or is it?

(Shared by Kimberly Roush, Program Assistant, Ohio Cooperative Development Center and Business Development Network, OSU South Centers)

Posted to the Ohio State University Extension-Community Development Blog
on September 11, 2014 at 10:13am
by author Becky Nesbitt, OSU Extension CD, Assistant Professor & Extension Educator (Ohio Valley EERA)

Have you ever noticed that when we want to illustrate how easy something is, we compare it to rocket science or brain surgery? Ok, it requires years of advanced educational study and hundreds of hours of technical experience to master aerospace engineering or neurological surgery. But, truthfully, the average person will never need to become adept at either of these disciplines. Effectively working on a team and getting along with others – those are skills that are necessary for everyone. Unfortunately, embracing the abilities needed to be a good team member and build relationships with others is not always easy. In fact, it can be downright difficult – kind of like rocket science…or brain surgery.

ScreenHunter_747 May. 26 20.30In a 2004 article in the journal Psychological Science, J. Richard Hackman contends that effective team members are people who possess the emotional maturity needed for their roles with their teammates. His research shows that fostering emotional maturity is essential; however, it is a trait that tends to be developmental in nature and cannot be readily taught. Well, you’ll get no argument here. In fact, while many institutions of higher learning offer degrees in neurology or engineering, we’ve yet to see a university that offers a degree in emotional maturity.

So what are those elusive (for some folks, anyway) skills that demonstrate emotional maturity, thus enabling a person to be a good team member? Here’s a list of our top three essential teammate traits:

    Trust – Let’s face it, trust is the foundation of all relationships. Whether it’s with your spouse, your friends, your coworkers or your hair stylist, if you don’t trust the person, you’re not going to be willing to take the risk of being open, honest, and well, trusting. For a good team to work, we need to be able to count on each other. Building trust takes time – and dare we say, it also helps to have face-to-face interactions now and then. Social media and Skype are wonderful tools to keep in touch, but there’s just something about breathing the same air as someone else, and actually spending time interacting together at the very same GPS coordinate that helps to build a strong, reality-based relationship that goes beyond cute photos and 140 characters of type.

Read More…

Interested in 5S?

(Submitted by Mick Whitt, Manufacturing Business Development Specialist, Manufacturing and Technology Small Business Development Center, OSU South Centers)

Would you like to try applying 5S/Lean principles in your company or work area but are unsure of how to go about it or what it is all about?

We offer step-by-step training on the foundations of 5S and will guide you and your company through the process from beginning to end. This training will be at NO COST to you or your company.

5S is commonly used in manufacturing facilities but is now being widely used in offices, hospitals, schools, and many other various settings. The benefits of organization, efficiency, and waste reduction are needed across all industries and work environments.

Email Mick Whitt at whitt.124@osu.edu for more information and to schedule a meeting today!

If you would like to read more about 5S, its benefits, and to help determine if this is something you would like to pursue, please visit Benefits of 5S: Is Lean 5S just Housekeeping?

Blog pics

Photos from: http://www.invistics.com/calibration-labs/

Never satisfied!

(Submitted by Mick Whitt, Manufacturing Business Development Specialist, Manufacturing and Technology Small Business Development Center, OSU South Centers)

Word - improveSuccessful business owners and managers know all too well the danger of trying to tread the proverbial waters of efficiency, quality, production, and skill levels. If you are successful it is because you have realized you must constantly and consistently strive to greater heights and improve in every possible aspect of your company. Satisfaction should be the carrot dangling that is always in sight but never achieved.

Continuous Improvement is a powerful tool and mind-set that allows not only decision makers, but all levels of workers, to feel invested in the process, process improvement, and ultimately the finished product or service provided.

For more information and a great article on Continuous Improvement follow the provided link and begin thinking of new, and maybe often overlooked, ways you and your company can improve.

See more about continuous improvement at Chron Small Business by Demand Media, Benefits of Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI), by Gregory Hamel, Demand Media

Earning Your Employees’ Trust

(Submitted by Brad Bapst, Director, Small Business Development Center, OSU South Centers)

Managing people can be a challenge. Employee trust is vital for successful interaction. Below is an article that gives key points to help gain employee trust as well as shares a list of important “Do’s” and “Don’ts.”

Proven Ways to Earn Your Employees’ Trust

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