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January 23, 2013
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Business news you can use from your Better Business Bureau®

  Trends & Trust 
  • Study: Government, business leaders suffer from lack of trust
    Only a small percentage of the people in the U.S. surveyed by public relations company Edelman say they trust leaders in the government or in the business world. In addition, the survey reveals that banks are facing a trust deficit. "Business and governmental leaders must change their management approach and become more inclusive, by behaving more transparently and seeking the input of employees, consumers and activists along with traditional academics, and adapting to their feedback," said Edelman CEO Richard Edelman. Forbes (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Flu outbreak reignites the debate over mandatory sick leave
    The tough flu season has brought attention to the debate over whether paid sick leave should be mandatory. The focus is on New York City, where a proposal is on the table that would require companies with at least five employees to provide sick leave. Meanwhile, you can handle the flu at your business by running an awareness campaign and using technology to allow employees to communicate with one another without having to actually be in the same room, according to Nim Traeger of Travelers Insurance. CBS MoneyWatch/The Associated Press (1/21), Entrepreneur online/The Daily Dose blog (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Labor board backs workers who talk shop on social media
    The National Labor Relations Board, in a series of rulings and public statements, has defended the right of employees to discuss work on social media, such as Facebook and Twitter. The U.S. agency says employer policy restricting social media use is illegal if it bars workers from communicating with one another for the purpose of getting better wages, benefits or working conditions. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Customer Satisfaction & Marketing 
  • 6 tips for creating a mobile-friendly website
    You can optimize your website for mobile users by including simple navigation elements and by ensuring that load times will be short, writes Rieva Lesonsky. It's also important to create a consistent experience, she writes. "Your site should have the same overall look and feel whether it is viewed on a smartphone, tablet or desktop/laptop." (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Management & Leadership 
  • Dealing with a troublesome worker
    Managers who struggle with problem employees need to acknowledge that something is wrong and stop ignoring the behavior, says executive-coaching writer Lisa Swan. The next steps are to create a plan for improved performance, document everything that takes place, and decide whether the problem worker can stay or needs to go. B2C Marketing Insider (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • If your workers won't change, maybe you should
    Bosses whose workers resist change have only themselves to blame, writes Disneyland entertainment manager Duane Dike. To inspire employees to embrace new ways of working, bosses need to take a more human and transformational approach to leadership, Dike explains. "[I]n many cases, the real resistance comes from bosses who refuse to change the way they lead," he writes. Management-Issues (U.K.) (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Most small business owners know the importance of managing credit effectively and that a "one size fits all" model won't work. Use Managing Credit - Made Simpler to find the right credit management model for your business and to help identify strategies to ensure you are on top of your business's financial condition.
  Funding & Finance 
  • Keep required documentation in case you're audited
    There isn't one specific deduction that will always trigger an IRS audit, according to Steve McCormick of Scott & Baldwin CPAs. "Rather the IRS compares taxpayers' expenses to a variety of statistical data it has compiled to see if the expenses are in line with what is reasonable and customary for the type of business the taxpayer has," he writes. It's important to have proper documentation for your expenses in case the government audits your business, he notes. American City Business Journals/Sacramento, Calif. (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Think twice before using the new home-office deduction method
    The government is offering a new, simpler process for small-business owners who want to claim a deduction for their home offices, but using this method may not be the best financial decision. Small-business owners may be able to get larger deductions by using the original method, accountants note. "And you want to get the greatest deduction possible if you are self-employed because it reduces the self-employment tax in addition to income tax," said Cathy Goldsticker of Brown Smith Wallace. The Wall Street Journal (1/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  BBB in the News 
  • 4 ways to protect yourself when you opt for paperless receipts
    Opting for paperless receipts can cut down on clutter, but shoppers should take steps to protect their personal information. Consumers should find out how businesses plan to use their personal information and should update their anti-virus software, BBB recommends. They should also watch out for scammers who may send e-mails that claim to be from legitimate retailers. Daily Ledger (Canton, Ill.) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Lend yourself to others, but give yourself to yourself."
--Michel de Montaigne,
French writer

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