Identifying and Handling Difficult Employees

While hiring procedures and employee standards of conduct should be of utmost importance in starting your business, no process is perfect. Employees who know the right words to say but act against company values can still slip through the cracks.

This doesn’t mean that they are hopeless, but you as the business owner need to know how to identify problems in the workplace before they become disastrous and figure out how to best discuss this with otherwise productive employees. This guide will help you to identify and solve problems with employees that might be dragging your production down.

Over-Confidence

Confident, independent employees that are also good team players are an invaluable addition to your firm. The problem arises when the confidence comes without humility where even high-performing members believe that they can do no wrong.

These crew members can be especially difficult when they can keep other employees quiet due to their high performance, but that makes it especially important to address the issue. As the business owner, you need to remain calm while discussing the problem.

These individuals can turn into great leaders if they have the intelligence and maturity to realize how they are affecting your firm and what they can do to improve.

Refusal of Responsibility

If a team member constantly has a non-personal reason for every point you mention in a performance review, that is an issue. Responsible team members will admit to their mistakes but be aware and confident enough to admit when something is out of their control.

While these employees can be irritating it is important to hear their side of the story, conveying patience and diligence. Sometimes those who are constantly complaining might feel unseen or unheard. Certain employees might have complaints that are unfounded or unreasonable, but that doesn’t mean that all are to be dismissed.

Workers who cannot provide a reason for their gripes might not be mature enough for your workforce, but others might have insight into how things could do be run better or how your team could get more operational support. Don’t just write them off as a complainer, but their attitudes should be tempered if it’s detrimental to morale.

Lack of Communication

Some businesses require constant socialization, especially in a high-volume or high-stress environment. Workers that are not suited to this kind of work should be identified and ruled out in the hiring process, but it is not always so simple.

Employees who suddenly go dark or stop offering reports despite a good history should be met with. An individual’s work-life balance could be disrupted and that needs to be discussed. Some employees are hesitant to speak about family or financial difficulties to separate the office from home.

While this is an admirable attitude, it can be damaging to both the worker and the company. Sudden changes in work ethic are often the result of emotional difficulties, and employers should always check in with their workers.

Giving an overworked or overstressed employee time off or a lighter workload can improve team cohesion and employee retention as they know you care for their overall well-being. Letting your workers know that you see them as more than a non-feeling resource is never a bad decision.

Personal difficulties with workers often stem from temporary hardships or inner issues that they’ve never had to address. As the business owner, you can be the one who can turn those perceived flaws into advantages for both parties. Always discuss potential issues with your employees before you move to immediate criticism.

No matter how you want to improve your workforce, Corporate Business Solutions can help arrange the best scenario for both your business and your employees.

Qualities of a Great Employee

Identifying high-value job candidates and employees is a crucial aspect of any business. If you are a wise entrepreneur, then you will have put considerable care into your hiring protocols and hold frequent performance reviews along with clear guidelines.  

This guide can help you and your hiring managers better identify the intangible aspects of individuals that can be a great resource to your firm. 

Appreciate Ambition

 While it may not always show up in his or her work metrics, look for employees and candidates that demonstrate a growth mindset. People with this worldview are looking to constantly improve themselves, be it in or out of the workplace.

 Appreciate those who talk about their hobbies and passions with a desire to learn and improve, as this almost always crosses into their attitude at work.

 An ambitious worker can always be taught, while a capable but unwilling employee can be a drag on both the productivity and morality of all those around them.

 Ambition can also be infectious, as growth-minded workers are usually positive people and can motivate the rest of your firm to improve themselves.

 Search for Cooperative Independence 

Going with ambition, eager workers are often quick to learn their jobs so that they can perform without excessive supervision, but this should not be confused with isolation. Any successful team needs to strike a balance between autonomy and communication with the rest of their department. This will depend largely on an individual’s role within a firm, but the concept remains the same.

Don’t confuse constantly needing assistance with being a good teammate. Good employees should be willing to ask for help when necessary, but they should never want to be a drag on production. A good crew should want to give back as much as they can while learning how to handle their role.

Hire Humility 

Much like maintaining harmony between independence and being a good team member, you need to find the proper balance between ambition and humility. High-performing but arrogant employees can quickly rise to become toxic leaders that poison your business. 

Seek ambition, not arrogance. Positive but ambitious employees grow precisely because they are humble to admit that they aren’t perfect and can always be doing better. Surrounding your employees (and also yourself) with these personalities will always result in good outcomes no matter what your company provides. 

This can be especially difficult as many candidates know the right words to say in an interview but don’t always do the right thing in their actual work. This is partially why the traditional annual performance review is going away in favor of more frequent evaluations.

Curate Confidence 

Humility does not mean meekness. Find employees that are growth-minded but confident in their current abilities. These workers are often innovative, take calculated risks, and don’t require constant assurance and supervision that they are doing their work properly. 

Candidates that are demure or too quick to agree during the interview process might become well-meaning employees, but their constant need for advice or comfort might not work well in your business model. A lack of confidence can even be disastrous in fast-paced, high-stress, or even dangerous work environments. Encourage your workers, but avoid those who need coddling. 

No interview or performance evaluation protocol will ever be perfect, and this is mostly because work culture and employee production can’t always be broken down into concrete numbers. Intangibles can make or break a seemingly stable business model. 

Never forget to pay attention to the social or soft skills of your employees/potential hires. If you’re interviewing a candidate that is unproven technically but demonstrates the previous qualities, then you might have found a diamond in the rough. 

For all other company culture or hiring advice, Corporate Business Solutions Consultants can make sure that your entire staff is happy and productive. 

Local Advertising Tips for Your Small Business

Every business owner wants his or her project to grow beyond their immediate market but getting a business model off the ground often depends upon word of mouth and how your idea grows in your immediate community.

The internet has made it easier for firms to reach out to a wider audience, but never underestimate the power of community when it comes to growing your company. After all, every entrepreneur should always be looking to fulfill a need. Checking in with those around you can help you do just that!

List on Local Directories

While time-consuming, determined business owners should first and foremost make sure that they have an entry submitted to relevant online local directories. This is the digital equivalent of making sure that your business is included in the yellow pages.

Not only will you invite local customers to your website, but you will also rise in local internet searches, making it easier for customers to find you down the road.

Do not worry about being included in every local directory, as they will not always apply to your business model. Large metropolitan areas generally provide a dizzying number of directories, but brick and mortar businesses such as restaurants and retail stores can get an early start on advertising by placing an entry into a relevant directory for free.

Help Your Customer Base Grow Itself

Referral programs can be a wonderful way to expand your client base. This is especially true for more social experiences such as businesses that offer painting or cooking classes. Encourage customers who enjoyed your services to bring a friend next time.

Offering discounts to customers who bring a friend can both ensure repeat business and attract new clients to your firm. This requires entrepreneurs to be both realistic and generous with the referral programs that they can establish, but if these programs can be properly dialed in, a burgeoning company’s reputation can spread like wildfire.

Keep a Well-Maintained Website

Once seen as a mysterious skill, web design can be done by almost anyone thanks to various architectural software. Site builders typically only cost a couple of dozen dollars per month to design and maintain your company’s online presence.

Designing a sleek website can benefit businesses of every type, and it can increase both your local and online presence if you study up and follow some basic search engine optimization techniques. Launching your website is a great springboard to taking your business to the next level.

Between taking reservations, publishing informative content, to building a subscription base, every entrepreneur should create some sort of online platform. With how easy website building has become, there is no excuse not to be reaching out to a digital audience.

Helping your small business blossom might seem daunting at first, but with some forethought and slowly putting one foot in front of the other, you can help your company explode onto the local scene and get the word out about everything your firm has to offer.

For more help with your entrepreneurial goals, CBS-CBS.com is there to help you every step of the way.

How to Sell Your Business

Owning and running a small business is often the most challenging yet rewarding event in an individual’s life. Many entrepreneurs dream of the day when they will design an operation successful enough to sell to an outside party and ride off into the sunset. What many forget is that the process of selling a business requires a great deal of preparation that should start years in advance to make sure the sale goes smoothly and there are no unforeseen legal complications.

One of the great mistakes owners make is not looking at the long-term future of their business, often leaving records and descriptions cluttered, hoping to clean it all up when it comes time to sell. The sale of a given business in America is under heavy scrutiny by the government. The most important aspect is the proof of the seller exercising his or her “due diligence”.

Due diligence for the owner means looking at and reporting your business’s information as if you were the party looking to buy it. Any inconsistencies or unclear records from the start of your business need to be cleaned up and kept immaculate. Depending on the size and complexity of your business, this can take anywhere from one to multiple years. This can be especially pertinent if your business’s infancy was disorderly and cluttered because of the challenge of simply getting your project off the ground. One of the great mistakes owners make is thinking that preparing business records for a sale is a brief period, but the process can go much smoother if overseen systematically.

One’s books and records should be extremely easy to understand. Buyers understand that business owners will seek tax write-offs every year but are the reasons clear. This is important not only for the buyer but for reporting to the government. Many novice business owners either are unclear in their write-off reporting or disingenuous. While this can lead to short-term savings, it can lead to legal/financial disaster when one is looking to sell his or her business.

While your staff may be comprised of excellent workers, you must keep their specific roles and job descriptions up to date. This does not have to be very intensive, but having clear salary, title, roles and job descriptions in place for your employees will make your business more presentable to a potential buyer. Vague or uncertain terms can leave buyers feeling nervous or confused. This is true both for finances and employee information.

Business owners who have had a future business plan in place, but never had the time or resources to implement it, can pass this on to a buyer. Sellers can discuss the generalities of a potential 5-year plan to sellers, essentially selling the potential of their business. Sellers can show buyers a lucrative future of their business that had never been previously considered.

Overall, business owners who are looking to eventually sell their businesses need to focus on three fundamental issues. The first is constantly keeping meticulous financial records throughout the life of the business, not trying to clean up years of messy finances at the point of sale. This is important not only to present a clear picture to the buyer but to avoid any repercussions from the government. Second, sellers need to realize that positioning your business for sale is a marathon, not a sprint. The process can even take multiple years, but it can be made much easier if you are thorough and clear in your business documentation.

Third, sellers should consider investing in a Certified Business Valuation by an accredited professional to aide in the ultimate negotiations for the selling price of the business.

In every step of the way from planning, financing, starting, to selling your small business Corporate Business Solutions Consultants is devoted to helping you in all aspects of your journey.

Improving the Interview Process

Many employers and employees are both finding the traditional form of job-interview outdated, especially in the modern landscape of zoom meetings and remote work arrangements. This may be the case for classic interview formats, but there are ways to reformat the interview process so that both employees and firms can find the best fit for one another.

Some firms have found success with a more structured interview process, leaving less up to the specific interviewer. This can be especially helpful at larger entities where multiple managers might be interviewing various candidates between departments. This helps to normalize interview styles depending on the role each potential employee is looking for.

This can make interview results more comparable across managerial styles and candidate results, ensuring that everyone within a department is using roughly the same interview rubric for a given position.

This approach is especially useful for more specialized or security-sensitive positions where applicants might have to send to rounds of interviews only to answer the same series of questions at each turn.

Modern HR data suggests that a shared rubric amongst each round of interviewers can make sure that with each interview the questions become more field-related or complicated as potential employees progress further along within any screening process.

This increased communication within a department might even cut the need for some interviews, thus saving a firm valuable time and labor capital.

Forward-thinking companies report the benefits of not only improving the macro-scale of the interview process but also fine-tuning things on a micro-level. Outside of very technical fields, focusing on generalized topics and work styles can prove more beneficial than stressing specific questions and data points.

Companies should focus on finding the person who thinks in a manner aligning with the requirements and responsibilities of a given position as opposed to memorizing and regurgitating a set of minute facts. Modern educational research shows that it is far easier to teach one basic information than it is to sculpt modalities of thought.

Learning how a potential employee manages inter-office conflict or works to manage multiple deadlines at once is far more telling of an individual’s long-term cultural fit than how quickly he or she can calculate how long it would take a train to travel from Chicago to Detroit.

This is not to downplay the importance of technical knowledge, as this will depend largely on the position, but employers should be aware that it is not always the most important aspect, especially when soft skills such as interpersonal negotiation or persuasive speaking are involved.

Finally, the interview process should always consider the firm’s ability to improve upon a candidate’s existing skills. A candidate might score very well on certain innate skills such as critical thinking or people skills, but he or she might not perform very well in other areas. If an employer trusts in its ability to train certain aspects of an employee, it might be worthwhile to work on an individual who is a great cultural fit otherwise.

The modern interview process is not perfect, but it can be refined for the modern workplace. Employers need to re-evaluate the needs of a given department and adjust from there. Hiring managers need to share a core rubric for a given position to reduce redundancies in the screening process, technical vs conceptual skills need to be weighted to account for each position, and firms need to consider how capable they are in training personnel up for a given position.

While this process might be time-consuming at first, it can pay long-term dividends in a business’s training and operational expenses for years to come. For further consultation on small to medium-sized business operations, CBS-CBS.com is devoted to making your hiring process as efficient as possible.

Financing Your Small Business

One of the greatest hurdles entrepreneurs meets when trying to start up their small businesses is adding the first funds to break into the market. This simple but challenging problem is one of the first great trials for all but a few of the luckiest entrepreneurs.

Luckily, there is a myriad of options to choose from depending on a potential small-business owner’s risk tolerance and patience.

The easiest and direct method of financing your business is by dipping into your savings. This allows an individual the keep from taking on any debt bring a partner into your project. Of course, many could find it difficult to come up with enough funds depending on the scale of his or her business ambitions.

A total failure of the business could entirely wipe out hard-earned savings. Some recommend that people keep a separate savings account to contribute to in addition to others saved for retirement and unforeseen expenses.

Retirement accounts can be a source of these personal savings, but there are often taxes that are paid whenever one makes a withdrawal. The risks are again the potential total loss of whatever funds invested that you had planned to save for your future.

Regardless of the money you take out to finance your business, entrepreneurs should always err on the side of caution and make a solid plan on what they are willing to lose.

If individuals have supportive families and friends who believe in their business model, they can also be potential financial sources, but this often comes with emotional complications. You can offer them a structured loan on specific terms to ease their minds, and they typically won’t charge you the interest of a bank and offer more flexible terms.

If both parties can reach a supportive agreement, this can be a possibility, but emotional intelligence is paramount. Financial disagreements amongst family and friends can ruin relationships.

Home equity loans can be useful low-interest options to garner funding for a small business, but owners need to be prepared to offer their home up as collateral. Borrowers are also still responsible for the repayment of the loan even if the business project doesn’t generate adequate income, and total default can result in the loss of one’s house.

Credit cards can be a quick solution if one needs a small cash advance to cover an immediate expense. Outside of these specific conditions, credit cards are not a safe way otherwise. Both interest rates and minimum payment amounts are typically quite steep with most credit cards and expenses can cost a great deal of money in the long term.

A better solution for business models that won’t require a great deal of capital to start is a microloan. Their terms and conditions are often better than typical banks in the regular market, but there is a limit on how much money can be borrowed. Microloans will not be useful to customers who need a lot of money and/or expansive business plans.

Microloans can also be easier to obtain than a standard small business loan from the bank. These lines of credit typically have favorable conditions, but most banks have strict lending criteria. Typically, these include good personal credit, sources of collateral, and a thorough business plan.

Financing a small business is often described as the most difficult part of starting a small business. There are multiple options to consider but they all come with their benefits and follies. Starting a small business should never be started on a whim and individuals should never be embarrassed to consult an expert. Corporate Business Solutions Reviews can help you with any advice you might need in starting your entrepreneurial endeavors.

5 Reasons a Co-working Space is Great for Small Businesses

Whether you’re working on a series of freelance projects or running a small business, a co-working space can benefit you greatly. As your business begins to grow beyond just yourself, it is crucial to make a space in your office to accommodate your team. Co-working spaces are a great way to positively impact your business’ growth.

Corporate Business Solutions has put together five interesting reasons that a co-working space is great for small businesses.

The Benefits of Co-working Spaces for Small Businesses

A co-working space is an ideal environment that provides people within the office with meeting spaces, desks, internet access, and other things such as coffee machines. In the co-working space, everyone can work beside one another to create a welcoming and creative space.

Now, let’s look at the benefits of these working spaces.

  1. Co-working spaces save time

As a small business owner, you can never have too much time on your hands. Saving time is so important if you already have enough on your plate. As a small business owner, you are responsible for dealing with customers, managing employees, and the day-to-day operations of your business.

These responsibilities can soon pile up which leaves you with many challenges along the way. This is where co-working spaces come into play.

  1. Co-working spaces save money

If you’re not into the idea of spending lots of money to deck out your space or hire lots of employees, a co-working space is what you need. Co-working spaces provide a cost-effective workspace for everyone to come together. Co-working spaces work for everybody from freelancers who need a quiet space to teams who are running projects.

Co-working spaces also offer small businesses a low-cost option for getting out of the house while still maintaining privacy.

  1. Co-working spaces save space

Co-working spaces easily offer both the privacy of a private office as well as the collaborative environment of an open floor plan. It also doesn’t take up too much space. It keeps your home and works life separate while adding comfort.

  1. Co-working spaces improve productivity

Small businesses can easily boost productivity with co-working spaces. If you have ever felt your creativity being stifled, co-working spaces can put the hop back in your step. If you’ve been looking for interesting ways to boost your creativity, a co-working space is a way to do it.

  1. Co-working spaces encourage collaboration

Shared spaces are the perfect way to encourage collaboration between coworkers. In these spaces, coworkers can easily bounce ideas off each other and tackle hard problems via face-to-face interaction.

Co-working spaces provide an affordable, collaborative, and easy-going space for small businesses to work in the best way possible. As small businesses grow, it is common to outgrow your co-working spaces. However, you can always find another location to level up your space again! If you’ve been looking for a space to collaborate and grow with your team, try a co-working space!

 

 

3 Small Business Marketing Tactics You Need to Know About

Whether you are planning to begin your small business venture, or you already have a small business, its success will depend entirely on how you decide to market it. In the United States alone, thirty million businesses are competing to become successful in their chosen industry.

Even if you do not have an overly large budget, there is so much more that small businesses can do to attract their target audience and maintain their customer base. In turn, it is quite easy to focus on marketing strategies that boost your business.

Check out the tactics from CBS-CBS.com to learn about marketing your business in the best way possible.

  1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is the unique and intelligent process of optimizing your business website to make it easier for search engines to find your business online. For example, if you rank high on Google, there is a far higher chance that your business will attract customers.

SEO is one of the most impactful ways to generate new leads as well as grow a business audience. As of now, only around 49% of small businesses are investing in their SEO. Here are some of the best ways to implement SEO:

  • High-quality backlinks
  • Creating a Google My Business account
  • Creating blog posts and videos that your local community relates to
  • Re-question reviews from customers
  • Optimizing your website with local keywords
  • Using location pages
  1. Social Media Marketing to Nurture and Engage Customers

If you are not using social media as a form of marketing to nurture and engage customers, you are not doing it right. Social media marketing is the perfect way to reach a larger audience and boost your business at the same time. On average, people spend 2.5 hours on social media each day.

That is why it is so easy to reach a large audience via social media. It is also very inexpensive. You can use platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or even Pinterest depending on your target audience.

Here are some great ways to use social media marketing to grow your business:

  • Provide quick responses to your customer’s queries and questions
  • Create high-quality content that triggers an emotional response
  • Create contests to get your followers to tag their networks
  • Create user-generated content using hashtags
  • Collaborate with influencers to establish brand trust
  1. Content Marketing to Improve Branding

Did you know that over 91% of businesses use content marketing to improve their branding? Studies show that over 70% of consumers learn about businesses through articles! Content Marketing focuses on being able to create and deliver valuable, consistent, and relevant information.

Eventually, it also drives profitable consumer action. Building a sufficient relationship with your customers as well as search engines can be time-consuming with this technique. However, if you do it correctly, it can make your business an industry leader!

Small businesses can grow significantly when following proven business marketing techniques and practices. It is also important to evaluate your results to identify which strategies work best for your business.

 

 

 

Dos and Don’ts for Small Business Owners

Small business owners throughout the world are different. However, there are some dos and don’ts of business ownership to beware of. There are certain traits, qualities, and mindsets that will take you further.

These things will also help you create success for not only yourself but everyone around you. Leading a business properly matters for customers, staff, and you as a business owner. Though, nowadays this mentality is quite rare. That statement is especially true in larger corporations.

With all that in mind, Corporate Business Solutions has put together some dos and don’ts for small business owners.

Do: Show respect to your customers and staff

In your chosen industry, you must be respected. However, that respect must be earned. The best small business owners will always treat people with respect.

Whether rich or poor, all people should be treated the same, without any judgment. Make sure your customers and staff are treated with respect, courtesy, and honesty.

Do: Communicate

To get the best out of your small business, you want to show that you have great character, maturity, and integrity. Most of all, you want to ensure that you communicate effectively with everything you encounter. Successful business owners don’t just speak about themselves.

Instead, they will share expertise, check in on customers and employees, and ensure that every conversation adds value. Make sure you use good manners and speak with consideration and thoughtfulness.

Don’t: Waste people’s time

As a leader, you mustn’t waste people’s time. Every time you show up late to a meeting or appointment, you are essentially saying that your time is more important. How you treat people says everything about you as a leader.

If you don’t allow staff to show up late for meetings, why should you be allowed to? It all goes back to respecting your staff and treating people equally.

Don’t: Think too highly of yourself

Self-confidence is important. However, thinking too highly of yourself could cause a lot of issues. Make sure that the words “do you know who I am?” never come out of your mouth. This could put you in hot water with your employees and those around you. While many business owners don’t usually mention that they’re the owner, some will pull out the “I’m too important” card all too often. People will like you far more if you stop acting as you know better than they do.

This will, in turn, make your work life far easier. The last thing your small business needs is someone acting like they’re above everyone else, even if you technically are. Treating people with kindness will take you far further than you think.

Owning a small business is no easy feat. However, with the right tools and the knowledge of dos and don’ts, you’re on the right path to success. Implement these dos and don’ts to ensure that you keep winning with a positive reputation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Make an Awesome Logo for Your Small Business

If you’re reading this, you’re likely planning to start a side hustle or small business. Perhaps you already have a small business but feel your logo is lacking. No matter the reason, there are some dos and don’ts when it comes to creating a suitable logo for your small business.

There can be a lot of confusion surrounding logos. However, there is no need to worry as you’re not alone at all. Reviews for Corporate Business Solutions have put together a few ways to make an awesome logo for your small business.

Do I need a logo?

The short answer is yes, you most definitely need a logo. No matter how small or large your business is, your logo is the face of your brand and should be treated as such. Even if you’re only making candles to sell to family and friends.

Put simply, if you are planning to monetize an idea, you need a logo. Otherwise, your image, efforts, and hard work could belong to anyone. Here are some tips to make an awesome logo.

  1. Get inspiration

Every great venture or logo begins with a simple idea. That means that the first step to an awesome logo is to get inspired and write down all of your great ideas. Start feeding your brain with new experiences, impressions, and memories that could conjure up a logo idea.

Use anything to inspire your brain. Things such as hiking, visiting local attractions, and meditating can help to unlock the part of your brain that wants to create. Any activity that brings energy and joy will help you create the best logo possible.

  1. See what’s trending

When it comes to logo design, there are several choices to make. Consider what is trending right now as to how you make your logo. However, make sure you look for aspects of your logo that will survive after the trends die out.

Don’t be afraid to try new things and give it your best shot.

  1. Keep a sketch pad with you

You never know when inspiration will strike. That is why you should always carry around a sketch pad to write your ideas down as soon as they hit you. Don’t be afraid to sketch things as it is a great base to have when designing a logo. Once you have come up with a few designs you like, learn about an online logo creator. From there, you can combine your ideas to make the ideal logo. When it comes to logo creation, you need to take your time. Rushing will only delay the process or create a less than an ideal logo. It is good to remember that your final logo will determine your business’s success. That is why you never want to risk rushing the process.

Take your time and make everything as perfect as you possibly can. With the tips above, you’re on your way to an amazing logo!