Tag Archive for 'Jeff Zbar'

Celebrating 14 years

If you will allow me, I would like to talk about a couple of milestones, of which we’re kind of proud: the 14th anniversary of The Small Business Advocate Show and the 12th anniversary of this publication.

On Monday, November 17, 1997, I began broadcasting the Small Business Advocate Show for two hours, Monday through Friday. Since the first day, the program has been nationally syndicated on terrestrial radio. In January 1998 we began simulcasting on the Internet, and in 1999 began offering multiple Internet on-demand streaming options. If you were streaming content before Microsoft had a media player that makes you a pioneer.

This Thursday will be my 3,641st live broadcast since we began - including all the holidays - even when I was on the road. I’ve conducted almost 14,500 live interviews with small business experts and entrepreneurs, and next week I’ll broadcast my 15th consecutive live Thanksgiving Day show. When you hear me talking about making sure that you’re passionate about the business you start, now you know that I practice what I preach.

From the beginning, my primary programming goal was to focus on the fundamentals that are important to successfully starting, operating and growing a small business, and to make all of the things we do available to you for free. On that last note - the free one - I must say thanks to our outstanding corporate partners, without whom the free part would not be possible.

Along the way, we’ve received a number of awards and recognition forour work on behalf of small business. All were accepted in honor of our heroes, small business owners.

Also, this week we celebrate the 12th anniversary of The Small Business Advocate NEWSLETTER. This week’s edition, Volume XII, Issue 1, represents the 625th consecutive weekly issue, all delivered compliments of my small business, Small Business Network, Inc. and our sponsors. Thanks for being a loyal subscriber.

Finally, thank you for your support, comments, critiques, many words of encouragement and especially the honor and privilege of being your advocate. I’m already looking forward to our next year together.

Nothing I do as The Small Business Advocate is about me - it’s all about you, my heroes: small business owners, regardless of where you live on planet Earth.

I talked more this week about my 14 years on The Small Business Advocate Show - Jeff Zbar even turned the tables on me today and interviewed me! Click on one of these links to listen or download:

Celebrating 14 years of The Small Business Advocate Show with Jim Blasingame

What does it take to survive as a small business owner? with Jim Blasingame

The 14th anniversary of The Small Business Advocate with Jeff Zbar

For more great SBA content, click HERE!

Consider teleworking

What do you do when a key employee tells you that, due to circumstances beyond their control, he or she is now required to stay at home at least part of the work week? If you don’t want to lose a valuable team member, the 21st century answer to this management challenge is teleworking.

Teleworking - where an employee works full or part-time off-site, perhaps from home - is becoming much more prevalent in the marketplace. In truth, the need to be able to work off-site isn’t new, but only in the past few years have the technological tools been available to make teleworking a viable management option. Here are some thoughts on how to establish and execute a teleworking relationship:

The first step is to determine, with the prospective teleworking employee, how much work can realistically be done off-site. Then determine how the off-site and on-site schedule would be coordinated.  Anticipate the need to make adjustments, so schedule a periodic review with your teleworker, to discuss progress and modifications.

Next step - the tools. Get your teleworker a notebook computer (which will allow work to be taken back and forth) and pay for a broadband Internet connection at their home.

Finally, talk with your other employees about why this step is being taken so they can support the new plan. If handled properly, I predict you’ll get major points for being such a cool, 21st century manager.

If you have trouble imagining having an employee who’s not under your roof, here’s how to get over it: think about how many hours a week your key employees are in your building without you actually seeing them. I’ll bet that number will surprise you.

Recently on my radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show, I talked with TJ DiCaprio, Microsoft’s Senior Director of U.S. Small and Mid-Sized Business Marketing, about the results of a recent study on technology and teleworking. I also recently interviewed long-time Brain Trust Member, Jeff Zbar, on teleworking as part of a business interruption strategy. Take a few minutes to listen to each of these discussions, and, as always, leave your comments or experiences.

Why you should have an employee teleworking strategy with TJ DiCaprio

Making your business ready for an interruption with Jeff Zbar

When “No” turns into the quantum leap for small business

What do you do when you work hard to get a prospect’s business and they say “no?”  When this happens, as it inevitably will - many times in your career - the first thing to do is to NOT take it personally.  Remember, this is not a rejection, it’s just business. And just because they’ve said no today, doesn’t mean they won’t say yes to you in the future.

But for the no to turn into a yes, you first have to show some class. This means you swallow hard, smile, thank them for considering you, ask them if there is anything you can do to help them make the conversion to the “other guys” - I’m serious! - and tell them you will keep working to get their business in the future.  And then continue to check back with them.

If you use this strategy whenever you don’t get the business, you’ll be amazed how many “No”turns into “Yes.” It might be as soon as that very day or it might be in five years, but more people than you think will respond favorably to your demonstration of class and professionalism.

Recently, I talked about this with long-time Brain Trust member, Jeff Zbar, on my radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show.  There are actually two short segments to listen to that cover this topic completely, including the Holy Grail of persevering in sales, the “quantum leap.”

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to listen and learn. And, as always, be sure to leave your thoughts, comments and experiences.

Click on one of links below to listen or download:

When a prospect doesn’t become a customer

How to accomplish the quantum leap

How small businesses produce sales by producing words

For a dozen years, I’ve been telling small business owners that one of the keys to their future success is the ability to create content to post online, which means they, or someone they hire, has to be able to write.  Alas, not nearly enough small business owners have heeded this advice.

Now, in this age of social media, my admonition on this topic are no longer recommendations, they’re imperitives.  If you can’t write about what you do, how you do it and about your customers’ experiences with your company, you’re going to be less competitive as each year goes by.

Recently, I talked about this on my radio program, The Small Business Advocate show, with a long-time member of my Brain Trust, Jeff Zbar. Jeff and I talked about innovations like local search, driven by words you post your businesses online platforms, are a key to success for even the smallest of small businesses.

As the Chief Home Officer, Jeff is a newspaper and online columnist, corporate copywriter, author of several books and home business and small business expert. Take a few minutes to listen to this interview and, as always, leave your thoughts. Listen Live! Download, Too!

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