February 6, 2013
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SmartBrief on Small Business

Problem. Solved.
Delegating responsibility without upsetting your clients
Warren Houston, who runs an Internet marketing company called NetConneXion, has worked directly with clients since founding his business in 2008. Now that his business has grown to include 10 employees, he wants to hire someone else to handle this responsibility. However, he is worried that clients will be upset by the change. Experts say he can overcome this problem by talking to his customers and making the transition gradually. The Globe and Mail (Toronto) (tiered subscription model) (2/6)
Building a companywide B2B social media team
Marketing, sales and some customer-facing employees should all be involved in B2B social media efforts, writes Bob Apollo. Sales, in particular, should realize the value of Nimble and other programs that integrate customer relationship management with social data. Broad involvement in social media requires unifying the participants' presence as positive and professional for sharing and teaching, not selling. Use clear guidelines to encourage employee creativity without stifling them with a top-down approach, Apollo advises. (U.K.) (2/1)
3 tips for social media marketing success
It's easy to get distracted by the constantly changing nature of social media sites, but you have to stay focused on what's important for your business, writes Diane Helbig, president of Seize This Day Coaching. Use social sites to share content that is relevant to your audience and to have conversations with your customers, she recommends. "Carve out some time and read what others are saying and talking about. Then weigh in," she writes. Small Business Trends (2/5)
7 ways to get employees to work together
It can be difficult to get employees to collaborate with one another, but you should start by establishing a culture that encourages teamwork, writes Michael A. Olguin, president of Formula PR. "If senior executives encourage an environment where the organization uses less 'I' and more 'we' in how they communicate, everyone will feel supported, included and important to the organization," he writes. It's also important to make sure everyone understands their roles and to focus on training employees. Inc. online (free registration) (2/5)
Tips for managing cash flow at a seasonal business
If you run a seasonal business, it can be hard to keep your company's cash flow steady during certain parts of the year. For this reason, it's a good idea to search for new sources of income and work with your vendors to address the issue, writes Rohit Arora, co-founder and CEO of Biz2Credit. "Perhaps you can space out payments during the year so that you do not get hit hard by variable expenses ... that occur just before your busy season hits," Arora writes. Fox Business Small Business Center (2/5)
Tips & Tools
How your business can eliminate waste
The first step to cutting down waste at your office is to figure out what sorts of things your business is throwing away. Nonprofits and government agencies may be able to help with this step, according to Jay Coalson, executive director of the Zero Waste Alliance. Afterward, make a plan to reduce waste and set goals for your company. Entrepreneur online/The Daily Dose blog (2/5)
Just for Fun
Don't set your watch by the clocks at Grand Central Station
All the clocks at New York's Grand Central Station are set to the wrong time. Officials decided to set the clocks a minute fast, creating the illusion that trains were leaving slightly late, as a way of encouraging commuters to take their time and not run for the trains. The tactic seems to be working -- the station has "the fewest slips, trips, and falls of any station in the country," Megan Garber writes. The Atlantic online (2/1)
The worst organizations are those that think good ideas or successful programs only come from senior-level individuals."
-- Michael A. Olguin, president of Formula PR, writing at Inc. online.
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