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January 23, 2013
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Bold Ventures 
  • From old barn wood to booming business
    Thomas Porter sells wood from old barns through his business, Porter Barn Wood, in Phoenix. He was introduced to the business a couple of years ago when his friends were moving some barn wood and needed to use his forklift. "We decided to bring in some more wood, got more people interested, and it just kind of snowballed from there," he said. Several eateries in the area have used barn wood during their remodeling efforts. The Arizona Republic (Phoenix) (tiered subscription model) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Leading the Pack 
  • How to keep your company from resembling the New York Jets
    The New York Jets' star quarterback, Mark Sanchez, has had a lousy year, but coaches will likely stick with him next season thanks to a contract that guarantees him an $8.25 million salary regardless of whether he plays. That's a sign of the sunk-costs fallacy, in which leaders fail to pull the plug on expensive missteps and instead throw good money after bad, writes James Surowiecki. The New Yorker (free content) (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Finance & Growth 
  • How a real lunch hour can help your business
    Research shows that many employees hardly spend any time at lunch, which means they might be missing out on valuable opportunities to share ideas with one another, Lisa Bonner writes. Two employees at Boehringer Ingelheim addressed this problem by creating an application known as Lunch Roulette that randomly assigns employees to eat lunch with one another. "Employee engagement is a key driver of business success. Consider enhancing your company's engagement strategy by developing a lunch networking program," Bonner advises. Blogging4Jobs (1/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Why being short on cash is a good thing for startups
    It's always nice to have more capital available, but there are certain advantages to running your business on a tight budget, writes Nick Francis of Help Scout. For example, if you don't have much money, you will feel a sense of urgency and you'll treat customers like royalty. "When you are scratching and clawing to increase revenues and grow the business, you'll do completely irrational things to earn or keep a customer," he writes. "And that's the way it should be." The Huffington Post (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
The Whole Entrepreneur 
  • The secrets of successful negotiations
    You should focus on the value that you are able to provide when you negotiate deals with other people, writes Grant Cardone. "The solution your product or service offers is the focal point of negotiations, not the price," he writes. You can negotiate more successfully if you remain calm and create a written document to outline the agreement at the start then alter it as you go, he writes. Entrepreneur online (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Ideas for Innovators 
  • When cost cutting + innovation = conflict
    At many businesses, cost-cutting efforts can get in the way of innovation. Ideally, CEOs should moderate this conflict, but they are often pressured by company boards to achieve short-term results. This creates a no-win situation; customers won't be able to enjoy the innovative products and services that could otherwise be created, and the company's value will eventually suffer. 15Inno.com (Denmark) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Fortune from Failure 
  • Successful people look inward to overcome obstacles
    When faced with challenges, successful people often look inward to reassess their mission and strategy, note Camille Sweeney and Josh Gosfield, authors of "The Art of Doing: How Superachievers Do What They Do and How They Do It So Well." "[W]hat we learned from conversation with high achievers is that challenging our assumptions, objectives, at times even our goals, may sometimes push us further than we thought possible," they write. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (1/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • How failing on Kickstarter can help your company
    A company called Spark was unsuccessful in its mission to raise money on Kickstarter, but CEO Zach Supalla notes that wasn't necessarily a bad thing. "We got enormously valuable feedback directly from consumers and early adopters; we got great visibility; and perhaps most importantly, we learned a ton," he writes. Still, it's worth analyzing what went wrong. Among other issues, the company launched at the wrong time and set a high funding goal. Mashable (1/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
SmartQuote 
[L]ike most things in life, building a company is about delaying gratification. Do the things that are hard now, win later."
--Nick Francis, co-founder and CEO of Help Scout, writing at The Huffington Post
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