Friday, April 03, 2020

Times Are Far From Normal When You Are Parenting in the Global Pandemic

©iStock/fizkes 
With COVID-19, parents across the world have a new challenge and it's not just the global pandemic, it's grappling with how best to balance being empathetic with their children during a crisis with disciplining for bad behavior.

As one parent says:

"We’re all stressed out," she [parent] said. "We all have the right to express frustration. It'll be unfair to behave as if nothing has changed."

Parenting in the pandemic is challenging.  Find out why (in case you are not feeling it).

Thursday, April 02, 2020

Global Small Business Owners Are Feeling the Pain

©iStock/Explora_2005
The bills are now coming due for big companies and millions of laid-off workers. Decisions made in the next few days will shape how coronavirus impacts the economy.

“Rent is due. Utilities are due. Credit card bills are due April 1,” said Hadley Douglas, who has laid off two workers from her liquor business, The Urban Grape. “The deadline is looming large and it is petrifying.” She said her landlord turned down a request to temporarily pay half the rent but said to keep in touch as it was focusing first on smaller, harder hit businesses.

The questions for small business owners become:  Which obligations do they pay and which can they put off? How many employees can they afford to keep on the payroll? Can they get a break on rent?

Read on about America's make or break week.

Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Migo Is Closing the Gap in Digital Financial Services

©iStock/Stefan Ilic 
Globally, over two billion adults lack access to credit. Migo’s innovative business model is seizing the opportunity to close a gap in the digital financial services industry and reach a large, underserved customer base.

And here's some good news:  Endeavor, a mission-driven, global organization leading the high-impact entrepreneurship movement has welcomed a new entrepreneur, Ekechi Nwokah, founder and CEO of Migo, into its global network.

Read more about how the CEO Of Migo has been selected as an Endeavor entrepreneur.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Getting Creative in Face of Global Upheaval

©iStock/EnginKorkmaz
Through the support of Jewish National Fund-USA (JNF-USA), Israeli artisans and small business owners are sharing their stories and offering unique artisanal products via a new platform called Online Mitzvah Marketplace: Shop Israeli Goods. The initiative will help Israeli businesses operate outside of their traditional business model that relies on foot traffic from tourists.

This effort is the result of small businesses in Israel's north and south who face unprecedented economic hardship, local proprietors have come together to create a U.S. focused online marketplace.

Learn more here and visit then visit Online Mitzvah Marketplace: Shop Israeli Goods.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: Staying Apart to Stay Healthy

©iStock/microgen
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • Visit The World Bank website to see what they are doing to treat – sustain economies and protect jobs – during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg are working together to fund research for COVID-19 treatments as the pandemic continues to spread.
  • Quote of the week relating to the COVID-19 outbreak: “It’s very tough to say to people, ‘Hey keep going to restaurants, go buy new houses, ignore that pile of bodies over in the corner, we want you to keep spending because there’s some politician that thinks GDP growth is what counts,’” Gates said. “It’s hard to tell people during an epidemic … that they should go about things knowing their activity is spreading this disease." – Bill Gates
  • New OECD outlook on the global economy.
  • A national defining moment – what historians will say about COVID-19.
  • Staying apart to stay healthy during the COVID-19 crisis.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Calm Mind

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that's very important for good health." – Dalai Lama

Friday, March 27, 2020

EXIM Bank Takes the Lead and Offers Maximum Financial Flexibility to Facilitate USA Exports

©iStock/AmyLaughinghouse
The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) board of directors recently underscored its strong support for new initiatives to inject liquidity into the market and give maximum financing flexibility to facilitate sales of U.S. goods and services abroad.

They agreed to support:
  • Bridge Financing Program
  • Pre-Delivery/Pre-Export Financing Program
  • Supply Chain Financing Guarantee Program; and
  • Working Capital Guarantee Program
More detail on each initiative can be found here with links to fact sheets with additional information.

Just in by trade finance expert Ursula Wegrzynowicz, "Those exporters who started applications, but did not complete, should complete those processes asap."

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Will Your Global Small Business Outlast This Crisis?

©iStock/wildpixel
USA Today says:

"Congress will decide whether your small business lives or dies. That’s not an exaggeration. What Congress does now, in the stimulus bill agreed on by the Senate and White House (but not yet passed by the House) to combat the coronavirus outbreak, determines whether millions of small businesses, including yours, will outlast this crisis."

Business Insider says:

"What to know about the $300 billion-plus for small businesses in the stimulus bill, and how founders will be able to apply for emergency funds."

Forbes says:

"A deal was reached in the Senate early this morning to inject approximately $2 trillion dollars into the U.S. economy, after days of negotiations and two failed votes.  The third and final economic stimulus package includes funds for direct payments to individuals and financial assistance to businesses.

The provisions for small businesses total $350 billion dollars, short of the $500 billion that Speaker Nancy Pelosi detailed in the House’s version of the stimulus package yesterday.  The bill will now move to the House for approval."

The New York Times reports:

"The largest economic stimulus measure in modern history would authorize direct payments to taxpayers and loans to small businesses, and create a $500 billion corporate bailout fund."

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Deciding What's Best For Our Country

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As AP reporter Marcy Gordon in Washington, covering business, financial issues and the occasional scandal, now pandemic fallout writes, "the U.S. economy is all but shut down, and layoffs are soaring at small businesses and major industries. A devastating global recession looks inevitable. Deepening the threat, a global oil price war has erupted. Some economists foresee an economic downturn to rival the Depression."
“Right now, the country’s frozen,” said Anat Admati, a professor of finance and economics at Stanford University and senior fellow at Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research. "Policymakers have to decide what’s really best for society."
No one knows how this recession may unfold or how effectively the government's rescue programs might help.

Read more at The New York Times.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: The Find Happiness Edition

©iStock/Rasulovs
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Cherish Each Day

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"The best gifts are those we not only cherish but put to use." – Les Brown

Friday, March 20, 2020

Technology is Our Savior

©iStock/Chainarong Prasertthai
As Doreen Dodgen-Magee, Psy.D. writes at Psychology Today, in many ways, technology is our savior.  She goes on to say, "It’s allowing us to stay connected and informed. For many, it’s allowing work to continue, albeit from home. While we are more than fortunate that this is the case, it’s also important to continue to be aware of the fact that, at the end of the day, we live in bodies that are impacted by huge changes in the way that we move about (or don’t) in the world."

Intentional planning goes a long way to staying mentally healthy amid the novel coronavirus crisis.

Read more about self care and COVID-19:  getting ready for the marathon.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Good Time to Master Incoterms® 2020 Rules

©iStock/Visual Generation
The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) presents an unprecedented situation, having immediate global impacts on communities worldwide, especially those most at risk.  With the recent recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization to social distance, wash your hands as often as possible, monitor your health, and stay at home, we thought this would be a good time to brush up on how to price your international transactions properly for when this outbreak clears.

For example, whenever you sell an overseas customer, you must quote them with the right terms.  As our friends over at Shipping Solutions say, "Using the wrong term could mean you are liable for transportation and other fees you hadn’t built into the price of your goods." To avoid that at all costs, download the Incoterms® 2020 Rules: Chart of Responsibilities and Transfer of Risk (requires quick signup) so you can instantly identify which fees and potential liabilities you face under each of the 11 trade terms.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Irish Prayer By the Global Small Business Blog Team

©iStock/jenifoto
During our challenging time right now, we offer you an Irish prayer on St. Patrick's Day:

"May God give you ...
For every storm, a rainbow,
For every tear, a smile,
For every care, a promise,
And a blessing in each trial.
For every problem life sends,
A faithful friend to share,
For every sigh, a sweet song,
And an answer for each prayer."

Monday, March 16, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: The COVID-19 Issue

©iStock/Naeblys
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Friday, March 13, 2020

How to Save China's Luxury Business

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Luxury brands are pinning their hopes on e-commerce to recoup some of the losses caused by China’s dismal retail environment. But will consumers switch to online in sufficient numbers to make up for the massive coronavirus shortfall?

Read more (requires a quick sign-up to access).

Thursday, March 12, 2020

I Am a Believer in the People

©iStock/jcorman
"I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts." – Abraham Lincoln

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Collectively, Seattle SMEs Need a Lot More Than $5 Million to Survive During the COVID-19 Outbreak

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Small businesses operating in Amazon's neighborhood will be awarded $5 million as a fund to support their businesses around Amazon's Seattle headquarters.  The SMEs are struggling with a dramatic slowdown since the Amazon instructed its employees – 50,000 – to work from home if they could.
These businesses support tens of thousands of local jobs that are a critical part of the Seattle and Puget Sound economy,” [John] Schoettler [Amazon vice president of global real estate and facilities] said. “They’re our friends and neighbors, and we believe it’s important to try to help them confront the economic challenges that are likely to come from the COVID-19 outbreak.”
Note:  If you are operating a business near Amazon's HQ and apply for the grant, expect Amazon to ask for information including the amount of revenue each applicant expects to lose in March.

Bottom line:  Amazon wants to make the process easy so that businesses facing cash-flow problems can be stabilized quickly, the spokesman said.

Read more here.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Jittery Global Business Owners and Consumers

©iStock/tampatra
Businesses from pet hotels to tour operators to smartphone repair shops and fashion brands, among others, are facing challenges tied to corporate, government and consumer response to the novel coronavirus.
While fears over the growing global coronavirus outbreak sparked widespread economic worries and wild stock market swings last week, small business owners have felt the ripple effects of canceled travel reservations, scrapped conferences, closed factories and jittery consumers.
Learn more about how global small business owners are facing and attempting to overcome hurdles caused by the naval coronavirus (COVID-19).

Monday, March 09, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: Jack Welch's Approach to Leadership

©iStock/jetcityimage
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, March 07, 2020

Lucky Enough to Be Irish

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"If you are lucky enough to be Irish, you are lucky enough." – Anonymous

Friday, March 06, 2020

With the Coronavirus, Mask Options Just Aren't Available If You Are Sub-Scale

©iStock/LewisTsePuiLung
In China, large corporations such as Apple Inc. supplier Foxconn Technology Co. have started their own mask assembly lines just to meet its workers’ needs. That option simply isn’t available if you are sub-scale.

And while bigger companies in China are largely back in operation, two-thirds of smaller ones still couldn’t get their employees to work as of last week, according to Beijing’s own government briefing.

Some say the situation could be even more dire in the U.S.  For example:
In its latest global financial-stability assessment, the International Monetary Fund found that while Chinese SMEs remain highly profitable — and large, state-owned enterprises are economic drags — the situation is just the opposite in the U.S. American SMEs are in the worst financial shape among countries in the survey, which looked at more than 1.3 million companies across major global economies. Over 60% of SME corporate debt is issued by borrowers that don’t make enough profit to cover their annual interest payments. In times of distress, it’s unclear that banks and the private-loan market will allow smaller businesses to refinance.
Read more about the state of China and determine for yourself whether they have a handle on things.

Thursday, March 05, 2020

Sarah LaFleur's Clothing Line for Working Women: M.M.LaFleur (Podcast)

As Guy Ray says in his podcast, Sarah LaFleur hated getting dressed in the morning; the choices in her closet felt overwhelming, many items didn't fit right or wore out too quickly.

So in 2011 she launched a line of clothing for working women that would be simple, elegant, and well-tailored. She had no experience in fashion but partnered with a top-line designer, Miyako Nakamura, to create M.M.LaFleur.

Today it's a multi-million dollar company with loyal customers from Capitol Hill to Silicon Valley.

Listen to the 1-hour, 16-minute podcast with Guy Ray and Sarah LaFleur at NPR.

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

New Mexico Small Business Owners Are Exploring International Trade

iStock/Sean Pavone
New Mexico has seen steady growth in foreign trade in recent years yet it can still be an intimidating prospect for a small business owner.
While international trade has more than doubled as a portion of the United States’ gross domestic product over the past six decades, [David] Glaccum [associate administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of International Trade] said many small businesses opt not to export goods and services due to a lack of expertise, as well as a level of comfort in domestic markets. 
Glaccum also indicated as few as 1% of American small businesses export goods or services to other countries, even though 95% of consumers live outside the United States.

Read more about how international trade is within reach for New Mexico small business owners.

Tuesday, March 03, 2020

WorldBlazer Founder Alison Larson Is Taking the Fashion World by Storm

©iStock/VladK213
In the following interview conducted by Laurel Delaney for GoDaddy, Alison Larson, founder of her own global business consulting agency, WorldBlazer Consulting LLC, shares her professional and personal insights — from what triggered her interest in global business to the trick to getting and keeping global clients to the things she can’t live without (spoiler alert: one is beads for making jewelry).

Read more about how Alison Larson is taking the fashion world by storm.

Monday, March 02, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: wegg® Workshop 3/4/20 in Chicago

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, February 29, 2020

Intermission: Let's All Go to the Lobby'

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
Let’s All Go to the Lobby’ – an animated musical advertisement – has been playing before features in theaters since 1957, but it does more than entice audiences to buy popcorn.  It promoted newly constructed concession stands in theaters across the country and generated extra revenue for enterprises.

Listen to the jingle from this short film.  Now that will stick in your head for a while.  A little more history:
Chicago-based Filmack Studios released the trailer animated by the producer of Popeye, Dave Fleischer, as part of a series of similar Technicolor shorts to promote the newly installed concession stands in theaters across the country. The film has lasted in movie theaters because it does more than its intended purpose to introduce audiences to theaters’ new way of making revenue—it embodies the moment such an intricate part of watching a film in theaters began.
Learn more.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Global E-Commerce Shipping and Its Challenges

©iStock/Feodora Chlosea
Today’s consumers are comfortable buying from eCommerce vendors located overseas, boosting the number of packages being shipped cross-border.
Simultaneously, retailers have adopted an omni channel shipping strategy that has shifted inventory from centralized distribution centers to brick-and-mortar stores and even directly from manufacturers, regardless of their location.
Result?  An avalanche of inbound packages that has overwhelmed U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) resources, whose systems have historically been geared to processing larger containers.

Read more about the challenges faced by global shippers – requires registration.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Plant the Seed to Global Entrepreneurship: Find Your Early Adopters

©iStock/wallix
Mariana van der Walt writes about how "Entrepreneurs need to be part of an environment – an entrepreneurship ecosystem – that will provide them with good access to markets, skills, finance, mentorship and talent."

We could not agree more.

In her article below, she provides a summary of the most common elements that need to be present and aligned in a thriving, supportive entrepreneurship ecosystem.

For example, "Growing an entrepreneurship ecosystem in such an environment can be challenging but can be done if planned well and purposefully managed to grow. Doing it in phases is the best way forward," says Mariana.

Here are the three phases:
  1. Phase one: Find your early adopters. Arrange a few workshops and maybe even run a competition for business ideas, with winners getting a small prize to set up their idea. 
  2. Phase two: Support new microbusinesses with a stick factor.  What's that?  Find out by reading the article!
  3. Phase three: Make it more formal. 
Learn more about how to create an environment in your small town for entrepreneurship to grow.

About Mariana van der Walt

Mariana is the founder of The New Zealand Institute for Rural Entrepreneurship (NZIRE).  She helps small towns thrive.   Being a serial entrepreneur and a seasoned intrapreneur, NZIRE is the third business Mariana dreamed (and worked) into existence. She is also a seasoned manager of globally distributed, remote teams, and can help you find your dream remote job.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

The Novel Coronavirus Disrupts the Entire Global Supply Chain

©iStock/Surlyapong Thongsawang
Even if you are buying from factories in India, Vietnam and Myanmar, many of the materials to finish off a product still depend on Chinese producers.
The deadly novel coronavirus that has devastated the Chinese economy is having a ripple effect across the globe. And while it has hit the lucrative auto, tech, energy and tourism industries particularly hard, it is also hurting the small businesses that shape everyday life in just about every corner of the world.
The food we eat, the work we do and the clothes we wear are all daily reminders of the vital role China plays in the global economy.

Read more about how the coronavirus is a daily reminder of China's global reach.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: A Formula for Global Growth

©iStock/ALLVISIONN
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • Everybody is hurting over the coronavirus – big and small companies alike.
  • If it weren't for manufacturers and strong exports, North Carolina would not nearly be so healthy economically.
  • Quote of the week: “You will never FIND time for anything.  If you want time, you must MAKE it.” – Charles Bixton
  • Here's a formula for global growth after the start-up stage.
  • New research will help make marketing to Millennial Small Business Owners (MSBOs) less of a shot in the dark.  Who wouldn't want to find this out?
  • Take a look at a comprehensive analysis report entitled Global Ecommerce Tools for Small Businesses Market Size, Status and Forecast 2019-2025 that gives an overview of the relevant market including analysis, latest market trends, and developments including features, technology and market chain types, applications and top manufacturers.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Let Yourself Go So You Can Rise

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Life is like a balloon.  If you never let yourself go, you'll never know how far you can rise." – Anonymous

Friday, February 21, 2020

The Central Role Black Entrepreneurs Play in our Global Economy

Let's celebrate the achievements of African Americans – especially during Black History Month – and recognize the central role they, as individuals and communities, contributed to U.S. history.
When an entrepreneur starts their own business, they create new jobs in the community. In fact, small businesses generate two of every three net new jobs and deliver essential goods and services to our community.
Here are top resources that help small business owners grow.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

The Idea of Real Food Without Preservatives Is That It Can Get Ugly

©iStock/Serget_Dubrov
Burger King is showcasing a nasty looking Whopper to promote the idea that it is dropping preservatives from its food.  And they call it something!  How creative is that?
The campaign, aptly called “The Moldy Whopper,” shows what happens if a Whopper is left out on a table for more than a month. Spoiler alert: It spoils. It underscores the chain’s decision to eliminate artificial preservatives from its food.
View a time-lapse video that shows the burger getting nastier by the day.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Rethink What It Takes to Lead in Our Digital World

©iStock/ipopba
Organizations must empower leaders to change their ways of working to succeed in a new digital economy.  The 2020 Future of Leadership Global Executive Study and Research Report, "The New Leadership Playbook for the Digital Age: Reimagining What It Takes to Lead,” finds that leaders may be holding on to behaviors that might have worked once but now stymie the talents of their employees.
Executives around the world are out of touch with what it will take to win, and to lead, in the digital economy. Digitalization, upstart competitors, the need for breakneck speed and agility, and an increasingly diverse and demanding workforce require more from leaders than what most can offer.
The authors of the report surveyed 4,394 global leaders from more than 120 countries, conducted 27 executive interviews, and facilitated focus-group exchanges with next-gen emerging leaders worldwide. The findings are as sobering as they are inspiring.

Find out what they discovered.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

The Global Trade Barometer and Economic Impact

©iStock/yu-ji
Every component of the Goods Trade Barometer, which provides real-time information on the trajectory of world trade relative to recent trends, will be influenced by the economic impact of COVID-19 and the effectiveness of efforts to treat and contain the disease,” says the World Trade Organization (WTO).
The Geneva-based body’s latest forward-looking Goods Trade Barometer stood at 95.5, compared with a level of 96.6 in November. 
The WTO goes on to say that global trade in goods will likely remain weak in coming months as disruptions from the coronavirus outbreak in China stanch the movement of international commerce already slowed by tariffs and uncertainty.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: Unlocking the Potential of Women's Businesses in Africa

©iStock/Wavebreakmedia
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Friday, February 14, 2020

Health Epidemics are a Global Risk

©iStock/MarBom
At the end of January, Tesla CEO Elon Musk had downplayed the risk of Novel Coronavirus, but two more weeks with it, the health epidemic instilled a new fear that caused a change of mind.
Tesla’s latest annual 10-K filing revealed a new risk to its business: “health epidemics.” In the filing, the electric automaker said its gigafactory in Shanghai was closed for a brief time as the coronavirus spread in China. “It is unknown whether and how global supply chains, particularly for automotive parts, may be affected if such an epidemic persists for an extended period of time,” the company said. “We may incur expenses or delays relating to such events outside of our control, which could have a material adverse impact on our business, operating results and financial condition.”
Read more at CNBC's update and get live Novel Coronavirus updates here and here.