Member Since 2015
Los Angeles Area
Blair Thomas has been around the world and back. Originally from Portland, Oregon, Blair studied Political Science at Oregon State University. He's passionate about the outdoors and loves spending as much time with his dog Cooper as possible. His drive for entrepreneurship has given him keys to the world and he's at full force driving his company eMerchantBroker which made the Inc 500 list as one of the fastest growing companies in 2016.
One of the most challenging quarters for business leaders is often Q4. There is often a rush to close out the year’s expenses, plan year-end initiatives and marketing campaigns, and coordinate holiday PTO.
Cyber Monday and Black Friday are great opportunities to attract customers to your small business, but there is often a lot of competition from major retailers during the holiday season. While your small business may not be able to compete on the same level as a major retailer, there are a lot of strategies you can use to sell more products or services through the end of the year.
One of the best ways to ensure your company is always in good hands—whether you are at the helm or not—is to make sure your team is made up of great leaders. And while careful hiring can deliver a similar result, another and perhaps more effective strategy for achieving this is to create those leaders through your company culture and values.
When it comes to work and getting things done, effective communication is about more than getting along with your teammates. In a business context, communication can affect not only the interpersonal relationships of the people who work there, but also the speed at which a project is completed, the quality of a product and even the rate at which employees leave the company. Effective communication, then, acts as a solid foundation necessary for any business to thrive.
When you start a business, you not only become a part of your local community, but you also join a network of local business owners. Being part of this business network means you can often find help among your fellow entrepreneurs and even lend a hand yourself when others are in need. This may come in the form of advice, but it can also take the form of partnerships where you both support each other’s businesses while also marketing your own.
Many entrepreneurs start new businesses while also balancing full-time jobs. When there’s limited time to work on developing a new company, you need to pick and choose what tasks to focus on first. Here, a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council members each share one task that should take priority over all others when you have limited time to work on your startup.
Maintaining good relationships with your vendors helps ensure that you consistently receive the goods and services you need and achieve mutually beneficial goals. But when the buyer-supplier relationship begins to sour for whatever reason, it may be best for your business to cut ties and move on.
While nearly every role has some degree of creativity involved in its duties, heavily creative roles such as those in social media content creation, marketing, video production, copywriting and more naturally require a different skill set from those roles that may rely more on logical or analytical thinking. When hiring for these roles, then, employers will be basing their decisions on a different list of desired traits and skills.
A company’s culture—or its shared values, behaviors, goals and beliefs—can be one of the most difficult aspects of business for an entrepreneur to build. It involves bringing together employees from different backgrounds, with different experiences and with differing goals, and determining commonalities and a unified vision that everyone can agree on and strive toward. Naturally, this process can involve a few bumps along the way.
A healthy employee is a happy employee, and many companies that understand this go out of their way to support the health and well-being of their employees by offering employee wellness programs. However, even if a company offers an employee wellness program, its benefits can often go unused by employees. In fact, some studies suggest usage of employee assistance programs is as little as 10%.
When an entrepreneur brings on a business advisor, they often do so with the intention of gaining sound insight and advice—finding that “second opinion” that can help steer their business in the right direction. But, many times, an advisor turns into something more: a true mentor who can offer guidance, support, motivation and understanding when times get tough, as well as the advice needed to help get you back on your feet.
Business travel is an excellent opportunity to make new connections and close deals. However, between transportation, meals, accommodations and other per diem expenses, it's easy for a traveling professional to rack up a hefty bill.
Employers look for a variety of qualities and traits in job candidates. While you’ll always want to highlight the hard skills that are relevant to the position you’re applying for, there are also soft skills that could help you land a job, even if you’re a little less qualified than the other candidates.
With so many technological advancements taking place and remote and hybrid workforces on the rise, recruiting and hiring processes are much different than they used to be. These days, apps, software and social platforms are where many companies go to seek new talent.
After the Covid-19 pandemic hit and lockdown was in full swing, many businesses were forced to figure out how to run their operations remotely in order to stay afloat. Although business is regaining a sense of normalcy now, many job applicants continue to look for hybrid work environments when seeking potential job opportunities.
Modern automation capabilities can free up workers’ valuable time to help them be more productive and focus on big picture tasks that will further a company’s vision. With so many tools available, how can you determine which automation technologies would be best for your company?
Members of Young Entrepreneur Council recommend apps and software that can help improve your social media marketing strategies.
Everyone struggles with self-doubt at some point in their lives, especially if they own a business. Self-doubt as a business owner can be daunting to overcome and may sometimes derail you from your goals. But part of being an entrepreneur means learning how to grow a thick skin in order to take on the adversity, rejection and low confidence that can often come with the job.
Every growing organization will experience role transitions at some point. Whether a project is changing hands, an employee is moving into a promotion, or you’re hiring someone to take on a new position, you will want the transitions to go smoothly.
Trust is key for any relationship to be successful, and this is especially true for manager-employee relationships. Managers rely on their employees to carry out the daily tasks necessary for the success of their business. Employees rely on their managers for guidance, support and leadership.
Having more than one social media account for your brand may mean reaching more people, but it doesn't mean businesses can simply post the same content to each platform. If you want to grow your audience, it's important to differentiate your content across accounts while still ensuring everything feels cohesive and consistent.
No matter what industry you're in, if you’re trying to hire in the current job market, chances are that you're up against some fierce competition. With so many companies to compete with, it's vital to find a way to stand out so that the best talent will want to join your team — and your job posting is the best place to start.
Throughout the pandemic, it has been difficult for many professionals to build and maintain new business relationships. Interactions may have been limited to Zoom calls or virtual happy hours, while valuable in-person networking events were placed on the backburner.
Is your brand in need of a makeover? While it may seem as simple as something like changing your company’s name, rebranding is a complicated process with many moving parts.
For entrepreneurs who want a leg up when starting a business, consider becoming a franchisee of an already successful company. This path ensures a built-in customer base, brand recognition and support from a parent company—benefits you might not get if you started a business from scratch.
There's a story behind the start of every business, and many entrepreneurs write books to share their own. Whether it's a motivating story of overcoming challenges, an inspiring story of passion or a story full of practical lessons and advice, an entrepreneur's first book can be used to help them grow their business.
Jumping on the latest cultural trends can be a good way to make some quick money or earn some fast fame. However, steering your ship off course to try to take advantage of passing trends isn't always the best long-term decision.
Super Bowl commercials are known for capturing their audience’s attention in an extreme way, whether through humor, storytelling or the star power of their commercial cast. It seems that everyone has a favorite Super Bowl commercial that, no matter how many years have passed, they still remember.
In the era of information overload, we're surrounded every day by new ideas, technology and innovation. Finding a niche that hasn't already been dominated may seem impossible for the aspiring entrepreneur. Yet every day someone creates something new to reach a market that hasn't yet been saturated.
Starting a new business isn’t for the faint of heart. It takes courage, ambition, and a tangible plan. Many people will be eager to support you on your journey, but some may actually give you advice that could hurt your chances for success. Here, members of Young Entrepreneur Council list an “unlucky 13” collection of the worst startup advice they were given, and explain why that misguided startup advice is so harmful to entrepreneurs who are just starting out.
No matter your current role, when work gets to be too stressful or monotonous you may begin to daydream about moving on to bigger and better things—things that you're in charge of. The thought of starting a new chapter of your life where you call all the shots can be thrilling, but the reality of making such a move isn't always what you dreamed of.
At the beginning of the year, companies and employees alike are setting resolutions for the months ahead. As employees set their sights on new goals, there are a few questions leaders should be asking them at the start.
One income stream isn't enough for many people to make a comfortable living these days. Luckily, there are a myriad of ways for a working professional to make money on the side — so many, in fact, that it can be difficult to settle on just one.
Every professional should master the art of persuasion. Whether you're negotiating for a raise, pitching to an investor, giving a presentation, or trying to win a new client, having influence can help reach your goal.
January is a time when many professionals and businesses set goals and company resolutions for the year ahead. However, even the most well-intentioned may lose sight of their goals as the year goes on.
The future of your business relies on finding the best candidates to hold senior positions. Making the right choice can spell the difference between success and failure for your company, but it isn’t always easy finding the best fit to lead your company to the next stage.
Modern entrepreneurs know the importance of using social media to grow their business. It can be a great way for business owners to connect with customers and expand their company’s reach. As social media’s relevance has grown, so have the benefits of using popular platforms like Instagram to reach your target audience.
As the weather gets colder and the days get shorter, it's easy for your team's motivation to decline alongside it. If you don't want to see morale and productivity plummet through the winter months, it's important to take proactive steps to energize and inspire your staff.
The new year always brings with it the desire to make changes and resolutions that will better both yourself and your company. It can be exciting to look back at all that you've achieved in a year and look ahead to what else you can do in the future. Maybe there are certain projects your team didn't get to that you hope to complete, or goals you didn't quite reach that seem even more achievable now.
Launching a new product on social media can be a great way to go to market, but that’s only if you design an effective social media campaign. From creating content to scheduling, building awareness of your new product on social media requires a lot of careful planning and consideration.
High turnover rates are a tell-tale sign that something is wrong within your business. Whether the turnover rate is in a specific department or company-wide, it’s important for business leaders to address the issues that are occurring to prevent any further issues. Not addressing a high turnover rate can be problematic for a business and will likely lead to an unsuccessful team, a bad reputation, and low company morale.
Businesses may need to participate in fundraising efforts to secure additional capital, fund research efforts or expand their market reach. Before they can begin, however, leaders must determine their company's valuation.
Performance feedback is an important way for your employees to know how well they are doing in their role, especially in a growing company. While annual reviews help your employees see how they’ve been doing throughout the course of the year, they could also benefit from receiving regular performance feedback.
Many product-based companies want to be carried by major retailers, but with so much competition, only a select few ever achieve that goal. Landing your product in a major retail store will take a lot of time and persuasion, and you’ll have to be able to demonstrate why your product is worth a retailer’s shelf space.
When people hear the word "sales," they may think of demanding revenue targets, nonstop calls and long hours. While some sales roles can be challenging, this one-sided perception takes away from the fact that the field of sales is often a rewarding career choice.
When meeting with a potential investor, it’s important that entrepreneurs come prepared for any questions that may arise. You’ll likely spend hours preparing your answers, but even then, tough questions may be posed that, without good answers, could damage your confidence.
As the holidays quickly approach, it's almost time for you and your team to set your “out of office” auto-replies and get some well-deserved rest and relaxation. However, this is easier said than done when many professionals continually feel the need to be productive.
Sifting through piles of job applications and resumes can be tedious work. However, you can take advantage of certain recruiting “hacks” to find the best job candidates, people who are likely to be a great fit right from the start.
One of the biggest challenges for new entrepreneurs across the board is learning how to manage their finances. This is especially true of cash flow management. If you're not used to handling a business budget or invoicing, it's easy to lose track of how much money is coming in versus going out of the business.
Firing an employee for the first time in your career can be a difficult and emotional process. But whether an employee’s performance has been consistently subpar or a difficult downsizing decision has been made, sometimes it has to be done. To help you do it in the most effective, kindest way possible, a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) members weighed in on the following question:
When you first started your business, you may have found a few trustworthy team members to back you up. As the business is growing, you may be noticing your original startup team isn't aligning with your overall vision or perhaps you've simply "outgrown" the need for the roles you hired them to do. This misalignment can ultimately lead to stagnation within all facets of your company as well as an unhappy workforce.
Employees aren’t the only ones who can receive feedback about their performance at work. As a manager or business leader, it’s important to receive feedback from your employees so you can understand how you’re doing and what you need to do to improve. While every manager hopes for positive feedback, they may still receive negative feedback from time to time, and it’s how they respond to that feedback that can really make the difference.
Accurately gauging the fit of a job candidate can be difficult, and sometimes new hires who seemed great during the interview process don't pan out as expected. In situations like this, a leader must take action to course-correct and figure out the problem before the whole team suffers.
Employees, especially when new to their positions, often need guidance to be successful in their work. However, too much direction can be less like helpful and constructive feedback and more like micromanagement.
In the digital age, having a website is an extremely important and valuable way to inform customers of your services. However, it’s not enough to just have a website that looks good—the copy needs to stand out as well.
In an era when cybercrime and data breaches are more prevalent than ever, businesses can't afford to ignore data security. From phishing and ransomware attacks to careless password practices, there are countless ways for thieves to penetrate your company's digital walls and access sensitive information.
The secret to a successful and efficient company culture is transparent communication. This is especially true when you need to announce big news to your team in a way that will make them feel confident about the company's direction and decisions.
Your customers can be an invaluable business resource if you know what to ask.
One of the most significant milestones for any business is the day it reaches a point of expansion. While every business owner looks forward to the day they can grow their business, it's important not to be hasty in doing so. A successful business expansion depends on a number of factors and needs to be carried out at the right time. To help you understand when the time is right for you to expand your business operations, 13 experts from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) answer the following question:
As your company grows, you might face challenges maintaining the same level of transparency across departments and teams as you had when your company was small. However, doing so is crucial to cultivating a healthy company culture with every employee on the same page.
One of the biggest challenges for any new entrepreneur is learning their own sales habits and processes. It can take years for a person to really hone their skills and become an excellent salesperson.
When you are interviewing job applicants, there are certain “soft skills”—that is, non-technical skills that relate more to how you work with others and solve problems—that you should be on the lookout for, as these attributes are not usually spelled out on a candidate’s resume. Here, members from Young Entrepreneur Council share 13 underrated but important soft skills they look for when they are hiring new employees.
A public relations crisis is a common incident many companies face at some point. The lasting impact of the incident is not so much about the crisis itself, but the way it’s handled.
Communication is extremely important in the business world, especially when it comes to customers and clients. Without transparent communication, customers might feel disconnected from your brand and like they lack any support from your business.
Time management can be a challenge when you’re faced with work that’s piled up over a period of time. It can be overwhelming to look at a list of tasks and determine which are priorities and which can be temporarily moved to the side, causing some employees to stress or panic about where to even begin.
In a world filled with uncertainties, businesses want to be able to rely on customer loyalty. Many businesses know they wouldn’t be successful without their customers, but they may not be sure how to best thank them for their loyalty.
Searching for a new job can be a huge challenge. Modern recruiters have an influx of applications to sift through and judge, and it can be difficult to stand out from the crowd.
As social media becomes a go-to communication platform for consumers across all demographics, it’s important for companies to increase their brand awareness on the platforms their audiences use. Leveraging these social media platforms effectively can help create strong connections with customers, draw them to your business, and build brand loyalty.
With social media, businesses have a unique tool to get firsthand insights from customers in an environment which allows them to interact with their audience, ask questions, highlight new products and share information.
Scaling a business usually means employees will be taking on new tasks and responsibilities and new rules or processes may be put in place. Depending on how fast the company grows, the employees may become frustrated with all the changes, leading to disengagement and low team morale. If not addressed, this lack of connection with the business and its goals can be the first step to losing those employees.
In any type of face-to-face or video meeting, your body language can set the tone for the direction of the conversation. Depending on how you present yourself, the other person may be able to tell if you’re tense, worried or even closed off.
You have a great business idea that you're passionate about, and you're excited to get started, but before you do, you need to choose a business partner. This person can help you make complex decisions and guide your team through projects. They can be your best ally.
Taking on the leadership role of a manager can be daunting the first time. You're in charge of an entire team, and their successes and failures fall largely on your shoulders. Even though it can be intimidating, it's important to start on the right foot.
One common piece of marketing advice is to meet your audience where they are. For the many companies looking to reach millennials, that means social media — and especially through the use of Instagram and TikTok. These social platforms provide great opportunities to engage with millennials and influence their purchasing behaviors. But how can you ensure your social media marketing efforts will be successful and won’t actually turn millennials away from your brand?
A normal part of running a business is having ideas fail. However, sometimes these circumstances lead to crises within the business. When this happens, employees look to business leaders for guidance on how to respond.
Digital receipts, online bank statements and cloud-based document storage are the norm in today's business world. Some business owners may wonder whether they truly need physical copies of any documents at all these days. However, some important documents should always exist in both physical and digital form.
It’s important for leaders to know that, when it comes to teams, just because the weekly team meetings are quiet or the suggestion box hasn’t seen a valid recommendation or criticism in a while, doesn’t mean no one has anything to say. In fact, more often than not, employees have thoughts, suggestions and criticisms to offer, but they don’t share because they’re not sure how their leaders will respond if they do.
Just because a piece of advice is common doesn't mean it applies to every entrepreneur.
With the rich educational value podcasts often provide their listeners, it’s no surprise that the business community turns to this popular form of content to improve their skills and strategies. Some entrepreneurs even make major business decisions based on the information they’ve learned and the stories they’ve listened to on podcasts.
As a new small business, engaging your community is crucial to getting your business off the ground. The goal is to nurture lasting relationships that will drive your revenue and increase brand awareness; however, forming genuine connections with members of your community requires strategy and patience.
Content marketing is one of the most effective methods of gaining exposure for a brand and bringing potential customers into the sales funnel. By integrating strategic distribution, search engine optimization and inbound tactics as part of this approach, most businesses see excellent returns on their investments in content marketing.
Newcomers to the world of business ownership may have a hard time navigating all the requirements and challenges of setting up their first company. If you’re just starting out, finding another founder who has been through it and can provide sound advice may be worthwhile. With industries evolving so quickly these days, though, it could be difficult to find someone who understands your target market very well.
Sometimes an employee just doesn’t work out within an organization and needs to be let go. Firing an employee is a task that needs to be handled with delicacy and care, and the process can be intimidating for someone who has never been responsible for terminating an employee before.
Small businesses have several benefits over larger companies, but resources aren’t usually one of them. This limitation can significantly impact the way a small business deals with new hires. While a larger company can dedicate weeks or months to training a new employee under an experienced team, smaller businesses don't always have that luxury. The result is that these smaller enterprises have to be more creative with their onboarding. Below, 13 professionals from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) delve into this topic by answering the following question:
The pandemic has made remote and hybrid work arrangements mainstream. But it has also given managers a unique opportunity to bring different talent to their teams from all over the country and the globe. That being said, it's also important to think about how those new hires will work and be managed in a remote setting.
Conversion is an essential part of crafting a retail website. After all, it's one thing to get people on your website, but it's another to get them to purchase something. Approaches for this process can vary from business to business, but all successful enterprises have a few methods in common.
Search engine optimization is a prominent concern for marketers across all industries and for any business with an online presence. Having good SEO habits is likely to get your website ranked on search engines above your competitors. However, poor SEO habits likely won’t produce the results you’re looking for and can potentially lead to your site getting heavily penalized.
Entrepreneurs can come from any background, any place and with any experience level. Yet because entrepreneurs task themselves with starting companies to develop solutions and generate value, it’s vital that they have a specific set of skills that help them get the job done. These skills are a necessary part of the entrepreneur’s tool belt.
Public relations can be a delicate balancing act. If your business does PR right, it could skyrocket in popularity overnight. If, however, you run afoul of public opinion, you may find your company falls as fast as it grew.
When your business starts seeing success, it's natural to want to ride the momentum and build upon it. However, it's possible to grow too fast, too soon.
Because they often have very limited resources, small businesses have to be intentional about the tools they use. They don’t have the luxury of testing out and paying for expensive software and systems they ultimately may not keep, so it’s important that their chosen solutions are budget-friendly and effective from the start.
Finding a core audience to market to is a crucial part of making a business profitable. Many marketing departments spend thousands of dollars building a picture of their ideal customer to inform how and where they should market. Once they do that, it's just a matter of unifying their content and media planning to target their product's most viable buyers.
As machine learning becomes more prevalent in business, it has the potential to affect a company’s day-to-day interactions with its customers, whether positively or negatively. Many businesses have already invested heavily in machine learning and have found great success. However, new tech can always be intimidating, scary or potentially difficult to implement.
Email marketing is a great way for small businesses to stay connected with their customers and encourage more sales. The problem is that because of their size they often have limited resources for growing their subscriber lists. So to help small business owners expand their email audience (even on a budget), the members of Young Entrepreneur Council weighed in on the following question:
2020 brought a plethora of changes to consumer behavior. Many of these changes will serve as inspiration for new product ideas and functions that will help businesses better serve their customers in the year ahead.
Managers have the difficult responsibility of achieving their own goals to meet the business objectives of their company while simultaneously overseeing the performance of its employees.
When it comes to small and large businesses, not every encounter has to be about competition. Sometimes, interactions could result in a mutually beneficial partnership. The path to getting there, however, isn’t always so clear.
Email lists are fantastic tools for keeping in contact with consumers, sharing information and generating leads. But putting together an email list and figuring out how to attract customers to your list can take a lot of time and effort if not done thoughtfully.
When a client signs on with your business, they have certain expectations about what your performance will be. The best way to end up with a happy client, however, is to manage these expectations early on. If you don't, and a client feels as though they should have gotten more from your business but didn't, their testimony could severely damage your future business and your reputation. To ensure you don’t end up in this situation, 12 experts from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) share their insights on the following question:
As a new business owner, it isn't easy to sort out which business strategies work and which ones don’t. There's no standardized roadmap that guarantees success. Instead, success in business is a series of trial-and-error tests that result in a positive outcome, with plenty of mistakes along the way.
In business, it's only natural that you'll be called on to present to an audience. However, the stakes of some of these presentations can be relatively high, which can lead to anxiety and heightened nerves for the person giving them. Not everyone is naturally cool under pressure, yet so many business professionals manage to give these pitches effortlessly, or so it seems.
The modern world has made it really easy for anyone to get started on a side hustle. In fact, most entrepreneurs get started with some sort of side gig. Transitioning those side hustles into standalone businesses that can financially support them usually begins with understanding how to make a significant amount of profit, but not all side hustle ideas are lucrative enough to evolve into something financially stable.
Being an entrepreneur and owning your own business is an end goal for most people. It's a thrilling end result -- the fact that you're your own boss, you set your own hours, and remain accountable only to yourself can be a heady mix. Yet, the benefits of the position usually overshadow the more pertinent considerations that would-be entrepreneurs overlook. Although there are significant benefits to being a business owner, there's also a considerable amount of background work that rarely gets highlighted but needs to be done.
Communication is one of the most essential skills that a business leader needs to master to be successful. Great leaders may develop their communication skills early on in their careers, but they also have created and maintained habits that help them communicate more effectively.
Hiring for a senior position at a company usually requires a lot more time and effort than hiring for other positions. In many cases, business owners may have a hard time finding the most effective way to source senior talent for their organization. You don't want to lose out on great talent, but you also need to spot the best talent out of the field of applicants, because making a wrong hire at this level can spell disaster for the organization.
Small businesses, like any business, have finances that need to be kept in order. Owners can deal with these duties to a point; however, small businesses tend to grow, and hiring an employee dedicated to keeping the company's finances in check is often a necessary next step. Luckily, many small business owners can hire someone on a part-time basis. This route carries a lot less overhead in terms of time and money compared to hiring a full-time employee, but it also comes with its own challenges. That’s why we asked 11 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following:
Programming is highly in demand in today's digital-first world. Try these tools, courses and platforms recommended by business leaders.
Businesses are in an unenviable position of having to find the most talented individuals in their field and entice them to work at their organization. In many cases, finding qualified candidates has come down to creating the right ads and vetting candidates properly.
16 entrepreneurs from YEC share their favorite sales automation tools and strategies and explain why they work.
Public speaking is a great way to gain exposure for your brand and a reputation for expertise in your field. Events with an audience allow for transparency and vulnerability—two key pieces to success when you're working to build a brand that consumers are eager to engage with. Speaking events also help you show off the core solutions your business has to offer.
There's no question that retail is a challenging industry to master. However, for investors or manufacturers, the challenges it presents are more than worth the rewards. Retail distribution allows a business to serve its offerings up to a much broader population than direct distribution, thus increasing an enterprise’s visibility and revenue.
The holiday season is usually a goldmine of opportunities for product-based businesses that deploy specific marketing strategies to make their offering stand out and be relevant for that time of the year. While service-based businesses typically find it more difficult to capitalize on this season’s business opportunities, there are still several creative strategies they can deploy to make holiday marketing work in their favor. To help, we asked 12 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following:
Innovation is the key to a successful and progressive business, and your staff should constantly be looking for ways to grow your brand. As a leader, it’s your responsibility to keep your workers engaged and motivated.
These 20 entrepreneurs discuss the best features for remote management of a displaced workforce.
Every successful business leader needs to know how to communicate effectively. Both written and verbal communication skills are crucial if you want to build and maintain strong relationships with your employees, customers and partners.
Growing a business seems like a simple prospect, and it can be deceptively simple on paper. However, once you start to delve into the heart of the matter, you realize that a service-based business requires some deep thought before you can scale it.
An effective internal communications strategy is essential when trying to build a cohesive team working together toward the same goal. Especially when it comes to announcing important news to your team, using the right internal communications approach is of utmost importance. The right communications strategy ensures the communicated message is clear and easily understood, leaving no room for error. That’s why we asked 15 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following:
With each passing year, demographics change. Where a company's core demographic might have been millennials a few years ago, today it's shifted to Generation Z. Unfortunately, there's a marked difference in values between generations, and businesses need to revamp their marketing strategy to reach out to their newest client base without alienating their other followers.
After a user likes or shares one of your posts on social media, you've got them interested in your brand or product. But how do you leverage this engagement and keep it going?
For online businesses, a high-performing website that encourages engagement and conversions is the key to successful growth. It often takes time to build up a steady stream of website visitors and consistent buyers. However, there are some things you can do to help accelerate the process.
Having the right clients can make all the difference in your business’s success. Of course, finding those ideal clients isn’t always easy. You don’t want to be too selective and turn down a good business opportunity, but you also don’t want to overextend yourself for a client who won’t stick around in the long run.
Despite the numerous digital communications channels available today, email is still one of the best ways to get and stay in touch with your customers. Email marketing is notorious for its high return on investment, and with nearly 4 billion active email users, there’s a huge potential audience waiting to receive your messages.
Once seemingly confined to the spheres of gaming and technology, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are becoming increasingly common in both personal and professional ventures. In fact, VR and AR can be used to great effect in one’s personal branding strategy, especially if it's giving your audience a deeper connection or more intimate look at your business.
Businesses thrive on interaction with large clients. They form the most significant inflow of money to the enterprise and help you meet your obligations from month to month. With so many companies closing down, it's not far-fetched to think that one of your massive clients might face bankruptcy. When that happens, you will need to have a clear plan in place to recover any overdue payments and soften the blow until you find new customers. That’s why we asked 12 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following:
Brand loyalty forms a core concept of marketing in the 21st century. In a paradigm shift, thanks to better interactivity with consumers, brand loyalty is now easier to achieve than ever before. With a medium where the brand can interact directly with clients in the form of social media, all a company has to do is use their social media presence cleverly. Once they leverage their following and provide value to the audience, brand loyalty is sure to follow. To help, we asked 14 successful entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following question:
Entrepreneurs have some bad habits, one of which is not knowing when they need a break. With many young entrepreneurs, it's almost impossible to take a step back and relax. Yet studies have shown that entrepreneurs that don't take time out to smell the roses risk serious health problems later on in life.
Opt for gradual change and seek to align daily tasks with long-term goals.
When you're negotiating a deal, misinterpreted tone or poorly-chosen words could ruin an otherwise-successful conversation. Sometimes you may not know even which phrases might turn a deal sour. That's why we asked 16 members of Young Entrepreneur Council the following question:
These tools and strategies can make email marketing more efficient and less time-consuming.
Within an organization, some skills are far more valuable than others. If your business is looking at hiring new employees, then these skills should be a primary focus for your interviews. Knowing what skills are crucial for an enterprise to grow and thrive helps you figure out if an employee may be worth hiring, even if they don't fit the ideal. Sometimes the company needs more than just the right qualifications for their employees.
As a budding young entrepreneur, you're likely to meet a lot of people telling you, "no." While some of these people are well-meaning, the constant negativity will eventually impact your self-confidence.
Having a side hustle is a great way to develop a creative outlet outside of your regular career. However, these projects can consume a lot of your time, energy and money. That's why it's important to consider the required commitment and effort – and the potential return – before going all-in on your idea.
Getting any business off the ground requires sufficient capital. However, all the financial stress doesn't have to fall on you as the entrepreneur – there are other ways to secure funding for your startup without assuming 100% of the risk yourself. That's why we asked the members of Young Entrepreneur Council the following question:
The internet of things (IoT) is growing at a rapid pace, but sadly, security protocols for those devices are still in their infancy. Customer data security should be a significant concern for IoT companies. At present, there are several glaring holes in security that can be addressed with some dedicated effort. A few IoT companies have even patched out security vulnerabilities.
As a leader, you know your workplace dynamic directly impacts employee morale and, in turn, your bottom line. No matter how great your company culture might be, there is always room for improvement. But to make impactful changes, you’ll have to first understand which areas warrant the most attention.
Leaders should seek out ways to consistently express appreciation and ask for feedback.
Internal meetings can be a fantastic strategic tool to help a business get all stakeholders of a project on the same page, but they can easily turn into massive time sinks if they are not properly scheduled and managed. Unfortunately, many companies don't strategize their meetings. The result is a once-weekly report that doesn't have any noticeable impact on the business.
In the age of remote work and social distancing, try these video conferencing tools for your company's online meetings.
Winning a business or industry award can be a great honor for your business, as well as a highly effective PR opportunity. However, to be considered, you'll first need to submit an application to be reviewed by the award committee. To help you with this process, we asked the members of Young Entrepreneur Council the following question:
Working remotely has become the new standard in the COVID-19 era. Companies that followed a traditional in-office model have had to adjust to how they presently work, and soon have to learn how to hire remotely.
18 leaders from YEC discuss what elements business leaders should keep in mind before selling their company.
As a busy professional or entrepreneur, you’ve probably wished there were more than 24 hours in a day. While you might not be able to find huge chunks of free time, you can always find a few extra minutes a day, which adds up to a few extra hours in a week.
As an entrepreneur, it’s useful to have strong business acumen -- an almost intuitive skill that can and must be honed. However, good business sense alone isn’t enough; there are several other traits an entrepreneur needs in order to succeed. As some of the top leaders in their respective industries, the members of Young Entrepreneur Council know what skills are required to succeed in the business world. Below, they share 10 underrated skills that all entrepreneurs should possess, but often don't.
Making a major spending decision in your business, whether that be a new hire or a new marketing campaign, is often intimidating. You want to make sure you’re investing your money wisely, in a way that will yield a worthwhile return. To help you, we asked a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council members how to make financial decisions with confidence.
Accessing capital is one of the biggest challenges many new entrepreneurs face. From loans to investments, securing the proper financing is a long and taxing process, but it can be overcome. Members of Young Entrepreneur Council explained how they worked through their funding challenges.
Office culture doesn't stagnate, and there will always be a constant change around how a business operates. Instituting new office procedures and policies as the company culture changes may mean taking some chances. Not all new plans are guaranteed to succeed, and some of them require considerable risk on behalf of the company.
Entrepreneurs usually don't have enough hours in a day to get everything done. That's the primary reason why prioritizing tasks is a common trait of the most successful business owners. However, many entrepreneurs overlook the importance of hiring great talent to their team and place the priority of hiring new employees way down their list.
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If your company's cash flow is volatile, know how you can prepare yourself in the event of a downturn.
Banks are getting cut out of the payment supply chain. Can they do anything to stop it?
Protect your business and your customers from online fraud.
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