Friday, September 24, 2021

New Jersey Awarded $1.5M in Funding to Expand Small Business Exporting

Are you a business owner located in New Jersey who aspires to take your business global?  The timing could not be better.

The New Jersey Business Action Center (NJBAC), received $1.5M in funding for the New Jersey STEP (NJSTEP) program to provide financial awards on a first come, first served competitive basis to New Jersey eligible small businesses that are new to export, as well as those businesses who currently sell their goods and services to other countries. The program is funded in part through a grant with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

Learn more here and go for global!

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

A Hackathon to Develop Solutions That Can Help SMBs

©iStock/Bohdan Skrypnyk
The Good Ideas Exchange, which will take place in October, will bring owners of SMBs together with leaders from companies including American Express, Facebook, Indeed, UPS and Vimeo to take part in a hackathon to develop solutions that can help SMBs respond to the challenges they are facing, and those that are green-lit will be revealed early next year. 

Read more.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The United States to Lift Pandemic Travel Restrictions in November

USA President Biden kept the restrictions on travelers from the European Union, Britain, India and other places, despite pleas from business leaders in need of profits from tourism, foreign workers who traveled overseas to renew visas to work in the United States only to be left stranded, and citizens left separated from their partners abroad.  That will soon change.

The Biden administration will lift travel restrictions starting in November for foreigners who are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, reopening the country to thousands of people, including those who have been separated from family in the United States during the pandemic, and easing a major source of tension with Europe.

This could help rejuvenate a U.S. tourism industry that has been crippled by the pandemic.

Monday, September 20, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: Unique Outdoor Stays to Find Yourself

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

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Never Stop Trying

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Never stop trying.  Never stop believing.  Never give up.  Your day will come." – Mandy Hale

Friday, September 17, 2021

Life Is Not Easy. Doing What You Love, That's What Makes Life

“Life is not easy,” says Mexican pastries and bread business, Clementina’s Sweets founder Esmeralda Jimenez. “Doing what you love, that’s what makes life.”

The pandemic has disproportionately affected women, with significant numbers laid off, leaving their jobs or reducing work hours to care for children being schooled at home or other family members.

So if you are dreaming of becoming your own boss, these women made it happen during COVID-19.

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Paris is a Moveable Feast; So is Tianducheng

"If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast," sys Ernest Hemingway posthumously in his published memoirs A Moveable Feast (1964).

It appears one town in China has taken the Nobel laureate's words to heart, quite literally. 

Located in eastern China, Tianducheng would be like any other unassuming suburban sprawl in the country were it not for its uncanny resemblance to the French capital. 

Discover more because you won't believe how much this Chinese City looks like Paris – from the Eiffel Tower to minute details such as street lamps and urban furniture.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Why Millions of People Started a Business During the Pandemic

One new small-business owner said, "When you're not sure what's going on, you make the best of it that you can."  That about sums things up.

During the pandemic, entrepreneurs opened their own businesses at more than twice the rate seen in pre-pandemic times, thanks to government support programs and improved remote technology that weren't available during other economic downturns such as the Great Recession.

Read on to discover how entrepreneurship becomes a power booster during economic uncertainty.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Michigan Receives $2,000,000 State Trade Expansion Program STEP Grant

Michigan received $2 million in federal grant funds to help Michigan small businesses grow in the state through increased access to global markets. The amount is the maximum awarded by the SBA and a $650,000 increase from 2021.  

Managed by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s International Trade program, the Michigan STEP grant initiative (MI-STEP) aims to promote job creation by empowering Michigan small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to export their products, supplying financial assistance awards for eligible export development-related expenses.

The funds are expected to assist more than 350 Michigan companies in increasing international sales.

Read on to learn more.

Monday, September 13, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)

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

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Cause a Little Bit of Summer

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Cause a little bit of summer is what the whole year is about." – John Mayer

Friday, September 10, 2021

The Digital Transformation Will Continue to Happen

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO said small businesses will keep choosing the internet to reach their customers even after the pandemic subsides and brick-and-mortar advertising options become more useful.

With an interview with Bloomberg News she said “That digital transformation will continue to happen.  It might happen at a slightly slower rate but I think that the transformation and people moving to be online is going to continue to happen.”

Nevertheless, it's a challenging time yet the online revolution will continue.

Thursday, September 09, 2021

World Trade Center Utah Receives $1,050,000 State Trade Expansion Program STEP Grant

SBA announced that World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) will receive a State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Grant of $1,050,000 on behalf of the State of Utah.  

Utah’s export growth rate has been the highest in the nation for the past two years. Eighty-five percent of Utah’s exporters are small businesses, and international sales add $5 billion across the state in additional revenue for these small business exporters.

Exporting is an important tool for small businesses to grow revenue and boost local economies. STEP is designed to assist states with increasing the number of small businesses that export and the value of those exports.  

Read on to learn more about how Utah received a STEP grant to accelerate global growth of businesses.

Wednesday, September 08, 2021

Setting Your Sight on a Sustainable Future

According to Xero, building a fast-growing but sustainable business means consciously managing our environmental impact, helping to build thriving communities, and cultivating an engaged workforce.
That’s why Xero introduced an environmental sustainability program called Net Zero @ Xero and since 2019 has been committed to carbon neutrality, offsetting 100% of their global organization’s scope 1, 2 and 3 greenhouse gas emissions across owned and operated businesses in Australia and internationally, including New Zealand, the United States, Canada, South Africa, the United Kingdom and Asia.

Tuesday, September 07, 2021

Pandemic's Summer Resurgence Is Slowing the Global Economic Recovery

©iStock/Jira Pilankharom
Data over the past week captured a worldwide weakening as infections from a Delta surge hit travel and spending and worsen supply bottlenecks that are dampening manufacturing and trade.

Instead of entering the final months of 2021 confident that the acute phase of the pandemic is over, it’s becoming clear that booster shots may be needed for fading vaccines, workplace re-openings will be delayed and border closures remain.

“The spread of the delta variant is slowing the reopening process and has caused us to mark down growth globally,” said Robin Brooks, chief economist of the Institute of International Finance in Washington, referring to its revised 5.7% forecast for this year, from 6.2%.

Read on to learn more.

Monday, September 06, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: Business Schools Are Becoming More Globalized

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

Saturday, September 04, 2021

Catch Excellence

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence." – Vince Lombardi

Friday, September 03, 2021

Find a Forest That Brings Beauty to Your World

Find a forest – from Japan to USA to Canada – that brings you calm and beauty.  Even plant a tree if you feel so inclined.

Thursday, September 02, 2021

Women Entrepreneurs in County Donegal, Ireland Are Dreaming Big, Are You?

The Ambition for 2021 program through the Local Enterprise Office Donegal provides women entrepreneurs with a clear pathway to start a globally focused business.  The program is open to female founders and co-founders, entrepreneurs, or those with a strong start-up idea, who have links to Donegal. 

Many of these women are dreaming big, with projects designed to make a real impact on business, social and cultural landscapes.  Sixty percent have accessed Local Enterprise Office supports since completing the program, and 54% are revenue generating and exporting internationally.

To attend the Open Evening introducing the program, apply, or learn more, visit:

Wednesday, September 01, 2021

Estée Lauder: The Global Leader in Prestige Beauty

©iStock/Galeanu Mihai
Estée Lauder is considered the global leader in prestige beauty – offering high quality products and experiences, inspiring consumers to express their individual beauty.

We [Estée Lauder] are the only company focused solely on prestige makeup, skin care, fragrance and hair care. We have a diverse portfolio of more than 25 brands, and our products are sold in approximately 150 countries and territories. Infused throughout our organization is a passion for creativity and innovation—a desire to push the boundaries and invent the unexpected as we continue the bold work of our founder, Estée Lauder.

Read their latest report:  The Estée Lauder Companies’ citizenship and sustainability activities and performance for the period of July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2020.

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Ahava Zarembski Discusses How to Build a Manufacturing Company at 9/1/21 wegginar®

©Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global®.  All rights reserved.
When you want to learn directly from a women business owner or entrepreneurs (think of it as experience sharing) on how to export, finance a global deal, find customers, create an ecommerce business or ship products, Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global® is the go-to-place to learn how to go global.

On September 1st at 11AM CT, Sun Bucket CEO Ahava Zarembski will present a wegginar® on, "Building a Manufacturing Company: Coordinating, Establishing Global Offices and the Learning Curve Between Them." 

Here's what you can expect to learn:

  • The ins and outs to building a manufacturing company
  • Coordinating a global team
  • Establishing global offices
  • Leading pro-active social change
  • Aligning business needs with social needs

Please feel free to join us [Laurel Delaney will be moderating the Q&A].  It's FREE thanks to our caring and generous sponsors (refer to graphic).

To learn more and to register, visit:

Connect with you on 9/1!

Monday, August 30, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: The Hurricane Edition

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • What are hurricanes?
  • What does it mean when a hurricane continues to 'rapidly intensify?'
  • What's in store for Hurricane Ida when it hits Louisiana?
  • Quote of the week:  “Through meteorology, we know essentially how hurricanes form, even though we can't say where the next storm will arise." – Eric Maskin
  • 2021 Atlantic Hurricane season fast facts.
  • The 10 most damaging hurricanes in U.S. history.
  • Prayers for Louisiana residents.

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Lives Are Like Rivers

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
“Lives are like rivers:  Eventually they go where they must.  Not where we want them to.” – Richard Russo, author and screenwriter

Friday, August 27, 2021

Transforming the Way a Brand Communicates During a Global Pandemic and Afterwards

With the upheaval the global pandemic has caused, not every brand has been able to adapt — especially in the way they communicate with their audiences.  And it’s not about making an old plan fit the new mold; it’s about truly transforming the way a brand communicates.

Some businesses perished, while small businesses emerged to cater to the needs of certain demographics under lockdown. 

Why is that?  Could it be that you have failed to adjust your company to a new culture that addresses how your target audience has evolved?

Read on to discover how to begin the digital transformation process in marketing and communications.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Disruption in the Fashion Industry: Gray Market Digital Sales Emerge

©iStock/Grosescu Alberto Mihai
Want to be a player in the multibillion-dollar luxury “gray” market, a fast-growing sales sector that has historically operated out of sight of most Western consumers?  Think of is as a secretly discounted modern luxury digital market. 

Try these on for size:  Baltini (Italy), Italist (USA), FarFetch (London), and Cettire (Australia).

Gray market sales – or what used to be known as parallel importing – have been ending up in millions of digital shopping baskets. Read on to learn more.

The Fashion Law is a website exploring the legal and commercial challenges facing the gray market industry.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Shipping Companies Expect the Global Crunch to Continue

The shipping crisis is getting worse.  Here's what that means for holiday shopping.

More than 18 months into the pandemic, the disruption to global supply chains is getting worse, spurring shortages of consumer products and making it more expensive for companies to ship goods where they're needed.

Shipping companies expect the global crunch to continue. Unresolved snags, and the emergence of new problems including the Delta variant, mean shoppers are likely to face higher prices and fewer choices this holiday season.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: Starting Global and Why It's Important Post Brexit

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • When it comes to growing and expanding a business or startup internationally, there are essentials to take care of and mistakes to avoid that you should know about.
  • Starting global: why international business presence is the key to post Brexit success.
  • An estimated 4.7 million fewer girls are expected to be born globally in the next 10 years because of sex-selective practices in countries with a cultural preference for male offspring, a trend that could undermine social cohesion in the long term, research recently showed
  • Quote of the week:  “Maintaining confidence in international trade will be critical to the broader economic recovery in the post-Covid world." – Liz Truss
  • The instant collapse of Afghanistan represents a major change in the global balance of power, threatening America and the major democracies.
  • Rethinking the economy – new approaches to economic challenges.

Saturday, August 21, 2021

Happiness Is Like a Butterfly

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
“Happiness is like a butterfly, the more you chase it, the more it will evade you, but if you notice the other things around you, it will gently come and sit on your shoulder.” – Henry David Thoreau

Friday, August 20, 2021

Delivering On Your Promises in the Global Marketplace

Delivering on your promises is doing what you say you are going to do when you say you are going to do it.  Every time you follow through on a commitment, small or large, you build trust.  And if you go above and beyond, you make an even stronger impression. 

So, if you say you are going to email prices to your customer by tomorrow, try for today. If you say you are going to air-ship sample products within a week, ship within a week—or sooner.

Give your customer the ultimate experience:  Over-deliver and be realistic about what you can or can’t do for them.

By Laurel J. Delaney for The Balance.

Thursday, August 19, 2021

There Is No Escape to Globalization

Both the ongoing COVID-19 and accelerating climate change are manifestations of globalization and the reality of a world increasingly defined by the vast and fast cross-border flows of just about everything, from goods, services, and capital to data, terrorists, and disease.

There is no escape from globalization; the only question is whether and how we choose to manage it.

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

What the Big Guys and Gals Are Reading

©iStock/Anastasia Gubinskaya
It’s perhaps unsurprising that—among the 100-plus books shared by more than 40 leaders and personalities with McKinsey Global Publishing’s Raju Narisetti—the most robust categories are fiction, history, and politics.

The one they are missing is this.  But read on.

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

The Delta Variant Is Rippling Across Companies Worldwide

Still unclear: whether the Delta variant of Covid-19 will be a momentary stumble in an improving global economy—one that businesses and consumers are now better equipped to handle—or something more serious.

What is clear:  the Delta variant is leaving its mark on global business (subscription might be required).

Monday, August 16, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: How the Pandemic Will Be Over One Day – But the Way There Is Different Now

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

Saturday, August 14, 2021

How to Park a Bike

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"An intellectual is a man who doesn't know how to park a bike." – Spiro T. Agnew

Thursday, August 12, 2021

South African Women Entrepreneurs Persist Despite Daunting Challenges

A recent study conducted by Lionesses of Africa reveals how South African women entrepreneurs persist despite daunting challenges due to the global pandemic. The research found that women entrepreneurs responding to the survey lead enterprises while managing family responsibilities with 76% having children in their home.

The pandemic affected female employers to the extent that Covid-19 negatively affected their revenues by 82%.

Despite this, South Africa’s women entrepreneurs expressed optimism about their revenue outlook for the remainder of 2021, with 76% of respondents expecting to increase their revenues.

Read more how female entrepreneurs are weathering the COVID-19 storm.

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Being and Staying Relevant in Africa

South African-based North West University Business School is performing a careful balancing act with its international growth. The school has created a niche for itself in SA business education. Now it has its sights set on the rest of Africa, and beyond.

“We will carry the cost in order to get our footprint out there,” he [director Jan van Romburgh] says. “We will test the market for acceptance and ask people what they would like us to offer. We are very serious about being relevant in Africa.”

Read more about North West University Business School's aim at a wide global reach.

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Global Climate Change is Accelerating and Becoming Deadly: Let's Stop Burning Fossil Fuels

Global climate change is accelerating and human-caused emissions of greenhouse gases are the overwhelming cause, according to a landmark report released by the United Nations. There is still time to avoid catastrophic warming this century, but only if countries around the world stop burning fossil fuels as quickly as possible, the authors warn.

The effects of that warming are obvious and deadly around the world. 

Heat waves, droughts and floods are killing people and disrupting lives around the world this summer. Wildfires are burning with unprecedented frequency and intensity, including in places that used to rarely burn. Smoke and smog are choking people in cities and towns from Asia to the Arctic. Ocean heat waves are threatening entire ecosystems and supercharging hurricanes and typhoons.

Read the article here.  Access the landmark report by the United Nations here.  Banks funding fossil fuels.

Monday, August 09, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: 8 Tips for Building Brand Awareness Around the World

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • 8 tips for building brand awareness around the world (by Laurel J. Delaney).
  • Global ecommerce tools for small businesses market 2021 and forecast 2029.
  • The global small electric vehicles market survey was conducted to better understand the competitive environment.
  • Quote of the week:  “Focus on building the best possible business. If you are great, people will notice and opportunities will appear.”  – Mark Cuban 
  • Password management is a particular challenge for crypto investors who must store their keys somewhere they can retrieve them.  For that there is Singapore-based Torus which specializes in “cryptographic key management.“
  • There's an explosion of pet care companies starting up due to the global pandemic.  Fuzzy, a newcomer, is poised to empower and educate pet parents to enrich and extend their pet’s lives. They're working to change pet care from episodic to everyday, to evolve pet care from the vet clinic to anywhere and to change pet care from reactive to proactive.

Saturday, August 07, 2021

How Do You Fly?

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"It's impossible to explain creativity.  It's like asking a bird, 'How do you fly?'  You just do. – Eric Jerome Dickey

Friday, August 06, 2021

Apple eCommerce Store Redesign Plus Other New Software

The Apple Store has been redesigned and the company restored the dedicated Store tab in its navigation bar.

The new Store web page, which includes a carousel of product categories and quick links for shopping with specialists or locating nearby Apple stores, mirrors the iPad and iPhone version of the Apple Store app.  What's noticeably different is that Apple has brought back the company's iconic products with big photos against white backgrounds. 
Apple has redesigned its product category pages using a card-based look on some product lines, including Mac, iPad, iPhone and Apple Watch. Apple is also calling out the so-called “Apple difference,” an initiative that focuses on customizing products before you buy them, gift wrapping and personal online sessions to learn more about the device.

Finally, Apple will launch new software later this year that will analyze photos stored in a user’s iCloud Photos account for sexually explicit images of children and then report instances to relevant authorities.  

Wednesday, August 04, 2021

How Marriott Deals With an Uneven Post-Pandemic Revival

Marriott, the world’s largest hotel company by rooms, is staggering the rollout of its 'Power of Travel' global marketing campaign for its Bonvoy loyalty program in Asia-Pacific because the world is dealing with an uneven recovery from the global pandemic

While the campaign has been launched in some markets, where the recovery is more evident, its rollout could be delayed to September or beyond in other markets across the region.

Is the Marriott global campaign perfectly timed - for the United States, Europe and Asia-Pacific?  Find out here

Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Export With Confidence, a wegginar® 8/4/21 That Will Turn You Into an Exporting Pro

©2021 Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global.  All rights reserved.
Are you nervous about making the jump into exporting? Worried about getting paid on overseas deals?  Clueless about what resources are available to help you get started in exporting?  We've got you covered!

Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global® and the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) invite you to join their free wegginar®:  Exporting Uncertainty to Confidence: Featuring Hayes Manufacturing.

Here's what to expect: 
  • Hear from Penny Challender, President of Hayes Manufacturing, on how they went from hesitant exporter to exporting pro.
  • Ensure you get paid on your products and services with Export Credit Insurance (no more sleepless nights!)
  • Access Pre-Export Working Capital for Your Goods
Learn more and register (remember, it's FREE thanks to all of of wegg's generous sponsors; refer to graphic).

Monday, August 02, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: Pandemic Will End When the World Chooses to End It

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

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Kindness Is Always Welcome

©2021 Laurel J. Delaney.   All rights reserved.
"Kindness is always fashionable, and always welcome." – Amelia Barr

Friday, July 30, 2021

According to the World Economic Update July, 2021, Expect Lopsided Recoveries

According to the World Economic Update, the global economy is projected to grow 6.0 percent in 2021 and 4.9 percent in 2022.

The 2021 global forecast is unchanged from the April 2021 World Economic Outlook (WEO), but with offsetting revisions. Prospects for emerging market and developing economies have been marked down for 2021, especially for Emerging Asia. By contrast, the forecast for advanced economies is revised up. These revisions reflect pandemic developments and changes in policy support. 

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Owning a Small Business in South Africa

©iStock/Arnold Petersen
A report from the World Bank shows that South Africa's labour market is small and stagnant, because job creation in the private sector is weak, especially among small and medium firms.

This sector [SME] would typically be a country’s main engine of job creation, but in South Africa, most job generation came from larger companies, the World Bank noted.

Where are small businesses making a contribution in South Africa?  Find out here.

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Which Company Has More Than 400 Global Consumer-Based Websites and a Large Portfolio of Digital Products?

Recognize these household brands:  Kleenex, Scott, and Huggies? You guessed it.  It's the Kimberly-Clark Corporation that has more than 400 global consumer-based websites and a large portfolio of digital products.  Even though a quarter of the world’s population touches its products every day, changing consumer preferences, stiff competition, and increased production costs stifled demand a few year ago.  

With so many brands and 175 countries to localize for, there’s a lot that goes into building a cohesive digital experience yet going digital has helped Kimberly-Clark pull back ahead. 

From managing pricing, manufacturing, distribution, merchandising, shelving, sales, to people operations, every step of the process has a digital component to make sure their products get from their mills to neighborhood stores.

Learn more, especially how Kimberly-Clark uses the best kept secret Figma to solve design problems and move team members in the same direction.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Travel Recommendations by Destination During the Global Pandemic

Before you take off for an international trip, check the Risk Assessment Level for COVID-19.

  •  Level 4: COVID-19 Very High
  •  Level 3: COVID-19 High
  •  Level 2: COVID-19 Moderate
  •  Level 1: COVID-19 Low
  •  Level Unknown: COVID-19 Unknown

And here's the latest on guidance for fully vaccinated people.  If you are not vaccinated, find a place to get vaccinated.

Monday, July 26, 2021

Today in Global Small Business: Exporting Opens Up Whole New Revenue Streams

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
  • North Carolina exports billions of dollars in goods and services to the world each year. For small business, it can open up whole new revenue streams to keep them afloat in down economic times.
  • Open banking is creating new possibilities for businesses that want to reach a global market.
  • Small and medium-sized businesses in Latin America can find it difficult to get the funds they need to export their goods to the United States. It’s a gap Marco Financial is looking to bridge through its tech-enabled risk assessment platform that can provide better insight on who should receive loans.
  • Quote of the week:  “Business expands in proportion to one's courage to go global" – Laurel J. Delaney
  • How to MacGyver Your First Export by Laurel J. Delaney.
  • The State Star Award is given to someone who exhibits exemplary performance, makes a significant contribution to his or her SBDC program and shows a strong commitment to helping small businesses grow; it goes to Kevin Kim at Illinois SBDC/ITC.