Tuesday, September 22, 2020

SBA: National Small Business Week 2020 (Event Is Free of Charge)

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Here's the Agenda for the U.S. Small Business Administration's National Small Business Week that starts today, September 22nd (at 12:30PM ET) and runs until the 24th offering educational presentations and panel discussions that help both new and existing businesses to recover, adapt, and innovate in this challenging time.

Best of all: the event is free of charge.  Register here.

Monday, September 21, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: How RBG Made Girls Equal to Boys

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

Saturday, September 19, 2020

A Horse Is An Adulthood Treasure

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"A pony is a childhood dream. A horse is an adulthood treasure." – Rebecca Carroll

Friday, September 18, 2020

How Small Businesses Are Adjusting to COVID-19

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How are America’s small businesses navigating the economic disruptions resulting from COVID-19, and how will the CARES Act affect their decisions and future prospects?

To explore these questions, we [the National Bureau of Economic Research] conducted a survey of more than 5,800 small businesses that were members of the Alignable business network. The survey focused on assessing (1) the current level of financial fragility among small businesses, (2) the extent to which small businesses have already temporarily closed and laid off employees, (3) expectations about how long the crisis will last - and how this is affecting business decisions, and (4) decisions about whether to seek funding through the CARES Act, and how this will impact layoff and closure decisions.

Discover the survey results and themes that emerge.

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Entrepreneurship is An Integral Component of African Economies

©iStock/Andi Edwards
Entrepreneurship is an integral component of African economies – it is not surprising that the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) report for 2014, ranked Uganda as the World’s top entrepreneurial country.

With a high market value and uses in cooking and cosmetics, Shea butter has become known as Burkina's gold. By training groups of entrepreneurs in the best processing methods and how best to sell their end product, TREE AID is turning an everyday tree product into meals, medicines and schooling.

Most business entities in Uganda are small-scale ventures and operate extensively in the informal sector – young entrepreneurs have low growth expectations as not many of them innovate or develop new products.

Learn more about the challenges and prospects of SMEs and entrepreneurship in Africa.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Are the World Bank Doing Business Rankings Accurate?

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The World Bank's Doing Business rankings had a goal of evaluating countries’ openness to the private sector.  Right now, they are in a little hot water.  Seven years ago the bank rejected an independent panel’s recommendation to do away with the ranking system due to what appeared to be data manipulation [irregularities].

Now they have paused the publication of its next Doing Business report, originally planned for October, while it conducts “a systematic review and assessment of data changes” in the last five reports, as well as an audit of the data collection process and data integrity controls.

Sounds like they have some explaining to do ... we've always called their work Ease of Doing Business Rankings.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Georgia: The Epic Center of Global Trade in the Southeast, USA

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The new Export Georgia, USA Directory hosted by Georgia Department of Economic Development’s International Trade division  provides Georgia businesses with the global connections they need to reach new markets and diversify their international customer base. The site (www.georgia.org/export) currently features more than 60 Georgia businesses.  The new marketing tool has been created to provide virtual connections between international buyers and Georgia suppliers.
“Georgia has quickly become the epicenter of global trade in the Southeast,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Pat Wilson. “As we continue to celebrate a record-setting year for trade in 2019 – our trade team is focusing on the future. Not only will this tool help Georgia businesses find new buyers in international markets, but it will also help businesses get back on their feet as they seek out new opportunities to succeed.”
Read more about how Georgia helps companies connect to international buyers.

Monday, September 14, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: Fascinating Cultural Differences Around the World

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

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Being Real Awesome

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Being a unicorn isn't about being real.  It's about being real awesome." – Unknown.

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Business As Unusual During the Global Pandemic

©iStock/Tera Vector
As entrepreneurs deal with industry shutdowns, quarantines and fewer customers, “business as usual” takes on an entirely new meaning during the global pandemic.
Being a small business owner can often feel lonely, carrying the weight of the world, clients and employees on their shoulders. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Alaska Small Business Development Center (SBDC) want one message to ring clear for businesses figuring out a pivot plan: you are not alone.
Learn more how a pivot plan is critical for Alaska small business survival.

Wednesday, September 09, 2020

How Does a Company Grow 700% During the Global Pandemic?

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As the article below states, it’s rare for a start-up to glide silently under the media’s radar. “We never decided not to go to the media, we just never decided we would, and now seems like the right time to tell our story, before someone else writes about our financial technology start-up, Melio Payments, without asking us," says Melio CEO Matan Bar.

Just so you know:  Melio is Venmo for mom-and-pop stores. The Israeli startup thinks its tech can save America's small businesses.

See what you think.  Pretty impressive.

Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Where are the World's Tallest Buildings?

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It seems that humanity is always vying to exceed our past accomplishments, and nowhere is the evidence clearer than in the tallest buildings that make up our cities.  Take a look at the tallest buildings on every continent.

Monday, September 07, 2020

Today in Global Small Business: Are the COVID-19 Pandemic and Digitalization of Export Promo Services Here to Stay?

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What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • Are the COVID-19 pandemic and digitalization of export promotion services here to stay?
  • Why study abroad?
  • Quote of the week: "A lot of people, including business leaders, think the future belongs to China. Globalization is not a zero-sum game, but we need to hone our skills to stay in play." – Jon Meacham
  • New book:  Saving Face by Maya Hu-Chan on how to preserve dignity and build trust.
  • China's exports are surging despite tariffs and the coronavirus.
  • Coronavirus tests future of Japan's yellowtail exports.
  • Happy Labor Day to all American workers.

Saturday, September 05, 2020

Cherish Each Day and Cherish Your Visions

©2020 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements." – Napoleon Hill

Friday, September 04, 2020

American Express Global Small Business Owners: Pay Over Time

©iStock/Farknot_Architect
American Express, one of the last remaining issuers of charge cards, recently announced that many of their small business credit cards would now be automatically enrolled in their ‘Pay Over Time’ feature at the start of the November billing cycle.  Pay Over Time allows a cardholder to revolve their balance like a traditional credit card.
With a charge card, the balance is typically due in full at the end of each billing cycle. Amex’s Pay Over Time feature enables a cardholder to carry a balance on eligible purchases of $100 or more and pay interest on that portion of their balance they revolve from one month to the next. In other words, it allows an American Express business charge card to act just like a traditional credit card.  Prior to November, cardholders would have to request that Pay Over Time be applied to specific purchases.
Learn more about how American Express business cards default over to time plans.

Thursday, September 03, 2020

Navigating Business Disruption During COVID-19

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 COVID-19 has shown us that it is the interconnectedness among companies tied to a just-in-time supply chain that is designed to meet immediate consumption needs.
Covid-19 has caused a massive disruption to business operations up and down the supply chain, including to the operations of growers, producers, manufacturers, processors, and distributors, as companies struggle to generate revenue amid government shutdowns, closed schools, and abrupt changes to consumption patterns.
There are two critical factors necessary to ensure that a company’s business disruption does not trigger a legal process that impairs recoveries for creditors and undermines a distressed company’s ability to reorganize.

Read more about how to navigate business disruption in uncertain times.

Wednesday, September 02, 2020

Are You Zone Skipping?

©iStock/nadia_bormotova
There are many challenges and obstacles that can derail global operations.

"Leading cross-continental teams is a bit of a balancing act," says Deepak Agarwal, founder of several global businesses. "There is so much to educate yourself on as you enter a global marketplace. You have to think beyond your home office. Localizing, or understanding the way business is conducted in the areas where your business is present, can have a tremendous positive impact on your strategy for going global."

Agarwal provides five (5) pointers concerning:
  1. Language
  2. Payment method
  3. Price point and currency
  4. Shipping (which brings up zone skipping)
  5. Cultural nuances
Learn more here.

Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Thinking of Abandoning Globalization? Reconsider.

©iStock/AvigatorPhotographer
The coronavirus pandemic exposed the vulnerability of our global supply chains, interrupting the flow of critical imports into the U.S., and triggering calls for American multinationals to reshore production.
Coming on the heels of the trade war and Washington’s push to de-couple economically from China, this has brought widespread predictions of deglobalization. The U.S. Special Trade Representative even wrote a recent op-ed calling for the end of offshoring.
Ultimately, we will see changes in the way the global economy works.  According to Thomas Hout for HBR, "the fundamentals of our globalized economy — and China’s role within it — will not change."  Here are the four reasons why in his article: Abandoning Globalization Will Only Hurt U.S. Businesses.