5 Must Have Project Management Skills for Every Business Leader

5 must have project management skills
Project management is a must have skill for small business owners as well as managers and executives of large companies. Anyone can dream up new projects without much effort. Only those who can execute those projects stand to succeed in their endeavor. History is rife with examples of projects, large and small, that have either failed or overrun their time and budget because they were not managed well. The managers in charge of these projects did not possess and exhibit necessary skills required to take them to the finish line.

[Read more...]

How to Choose the Best Option to Train Employees in Small Business

How to Choose the Best Option to Train Employees in Small Business
Many small business owners treat training as something that should be avoided unless it was absolutely mandated by law. They consider it a necessary evil that just wastes their time and money. After all, who has time to train their employees when there are thousands of tasks to take care of. Many of them also work on tight budget, which limits the amount of money they can spend on “unnecessary” expenses such as training. This myopic thinking on training is wrong. By not providing training to their employees small business owners limit the potential of their employees and the contribution they can make to grow your business.

[Read more...]

Why Training Employees is Essential for Small Businesses

Why is training essential for small business employees

Employee training is not something that most small business owners give much thought to. They think of employee training as something that large corporations need to ensure their employees are equipped with the company policies and procedures required to perform their jobs. Most new employees in small business go through on-the-job training, if at all. After all, who has time to spend on training employees when there are so many tasks waiting to be completed, right? Besides, as a small business you don’t want to spend extra money on employee training.

[Read more...]

50 Interesting Online courses for Small Business Owners

Continuous learning and improvement is essential for small business owners. However, for many of us going to college or getting an MBA degree is not an option. After all, there are only 24 hours in a day! Online courses can help overcome this barrier by enabling us to learn at our own pace and convenience.

I came across this list of online courses offered by well-known universities and other private institutions that I wanted to pass along. Many of these courses are targeted to help you learn or improve specific skill set, which would be helpful for anyone who doesn’t want to go through the entire coursework of university degree.

Here is the link to the course listing.

Let us know which courses you like the most for the benefit of other readers. Happy Learning!

7 Steps to a Great Customer Service


A business cannot sustain competitive advantage for long time based on product and price alone. Competition eventually will find a way to beat you on that game. Competitive advantage built on customer service, however, cannot easily be copied. For proof look no further than Zappos.com. Here is an E-commerce company that sells shoes, of all the items, on the Internet. However, with a laser like focus on customer service it is selling a billion dollar worth of them annually!
After consulting with number of small business owners over past several years we have come up with a 7-step process that companies need to adopt to achieve the success enjoyed by Zappos. It will not be easy to follow these principles all the time and success will not come overnight. However, when you do master them you will have a lasting success that your competitors will find difficult to beat.
[Read more...]

How to plan for employees leaving without warning


For small business owners employee attrition is a fact of life. It is estimated that the annual attrition runs as high as 100% for some types of small businesses; particularly the ones that employ hourly workers! This means that you will not have the same set of employees at the end of the year as the ones you started with. This kind of turnover not only increases your cost in the form of hiring and training; but it may also reduce sales by affecting the quality and customer service.
While you can try to keep your employees motivated and use these techniques reduce turnover; the fact remains that the employee turnover will remain high if you are in type of business that employs hourly workers. My brother, who owns a coffee shop, complains that he always fears a call from an employee who will call him to say he is not going to show up for work because he has found another job. It always happens when he is not able to find any replacement on a short notice forcing him to rush to the business from wherever he is.
While you will not be able to prevent your employees from leaving on a short notice; the next step is to try to mitigate the impact on your business as a result by taking certain steps beforehand. Below we have outlined some steps you can undertake that will help you take care of business even when your employees leave suddenly.
[Read more...]