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LAST year was a fabulous one for entrepreneurs, at least according to the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity released last month by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. "Rather than making history for its deep recession and record unemployment," the foundation reported, "2009 might instead be remembered as the year business startups reached their highest level in 14 years - even exceeding the number of startups during the peak 1999-2000 technology boom."
Why the Hurt Locker is an excellent example of film making entrepreneurship.
Boards of advisors are best for helping entrepreneurs build companies in the formative stage, whereas boards of directors lend a hand during times of crisis or change, writes a serial entrepreneur. The author provides a blueprint for dealing with both entities.
Building a company means creating an "entrepreneurial corporate culture," according to this article by a big-company supervisor turned entrepreneur. The best "entrepreneurial" cultures borrow worthy tactics from the Fortune 500, while discarding those that constrain productivity, says the author. Included are tips for what to take and what to leave behind.
Entrepreneurs aiming to expand need to keep their eye on the regional, national, or global markets they covet while preserving and enhancing existing client relationships, says the founder of a private swim school that is poised for growth.
In today's extremely tight labor market, small-company employers must approach hiring just as they approach selling. To lure able and enthusiastic candidates, the author writes, a CEO should consider such steps as contacting reluctant candidates personally, offering equity compensation to augment salaries, and sending welcoming gifts like fruit baskets. Of particular note is a discussion of factors the author says "count" in the sales-whoops!-the hiring process.
Giving back to the community-and engaging one-on-one with charitable operatives, the press, and other local constituencies-enables small businesses to increase exposure at little cost, says the founder of a national moving franchiser.
The founder of three companies in the outsourced shipping business advises entrepreneurs to turn to outsiders for all services that aren't core to the business.
Mason Kauffman launched his first company with himself as the only employee. He quickly embraced outsourcing as the savior that would allow him to leverage his core competencies. He knew that's how his company would grow. Along the way he learned a lot about the ins and outs of outsourcing. He shares some of those lessons here.
The founder of two Internet businesses suggests tactics for protecting proceeds, minimizing taxes, and providing for a family's future upon the sale of a company.
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