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January 14, 2013
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Business news you can use from your Better Business Bureau®

  Trends & Trust 
  • Complex tax code breeds mistrust, watchdog says
    The complexity of the nation's tax code can make it hard for individuals and companies to ensure they're following the rules, and it can also take a toll on trust, according to National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson. Tax law "undermines trust in the system by creating an impression that many taxpayers are not compliant," Olson said. Leaders in both political parties seem to be in favor of revamping the tax code, but they have had an acrimonious relationship recently. Courier-Post (Camden-Cherry Hill, N.J.)/The Associated Press (1/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How to be a courteous smartphone user
    Smartphones are becoming ever more prevalent, so you should strive to be courteous as you use your device, writes Kevin Daum. Avoid shouting when you talk on the phone, and try to avoid including typos in your communications, he recommends. "Give equal consideration and care to smartphone communication as normal computer correspondence," because "all you are saying with typos is that you're careless." Inc. online (free registration)/Roaring or Boring blog (1/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Customer Satisfaction & Marketing 
  • How to turn Pinterest into a business tool in 4 steps
    Businesses can set up dedicated Pinterest accounts instead of trying to work around the restrictions placed on personal accounts, Amber Wallor writes. The network makes it easy to set up a business account, verify your business' website and integrate Pinterest's social features into your home page, Wallor writes. The network also offers a best-practices guide to help business users find strategies that work, she writes. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Social Media (1/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Resolve to enhance your customer service in 2013
    If you want to improve your company's customer service in 2013, you should resolve to keep calm and be nice, writes Michael Hess of Skooba Design. "Don't ever argue or be defensive with people -- there will always be difficult, unreasonable and angry customers, but very few of them are out to get you or your company," he advises. CBS MoneyWatch (1/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Management & Leadership 
  • Want happier workers? Go on a hike
    Dropbox holds regular "hillcore" events, in which workers are encouraged to climb a hill together. The hikes help employees clear their heads, boosting overall productivity and helping foster collaboration and innovation, says programmer Dan Wheeler. "When you're programming, you're doing your job more effectively if your mind is going faster. When you're hiking, you're letting your mind wander," he explains. Fast Company online (1/9) 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 
  • What you need to know about smart pricing
    Pricing your products and services is a key part of doing business, and yet many companies don't make it a priority during the product-development process, according to Kevin Mitchell of the Professional Pricing Society. "It works much better if you consider the pricing from the start and have everything else follow behind that, because the price is essentially the money that you're going to get," he said. You should also realize that your customers may be less price-sensitive than you think. Intuit Small Business Blog (1/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Retirement-planning strategies for small-business owners
    As a small-business owner, you need a plan for retirement that goes beyond simply making your company as valuable as possible, Laura Shin writes. For this reason, it's a good idea to set up a retirement account; which type of account you should use depends on factors such as the size of your workforce. Fox Business/LearnVest (1/9) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  BBB in the News 
  • How to choose the right insurance coverage for your pet
    Some pet owners purchase wellness plans or insurance to help manage the cost of caring for their animals. "Both pet wellness and pet insurance plans offer benefits to consumers, as well as their pets," said BBB's Dana Badgerow. "The key is investigating your options and deciding if one or both is the best choice for you." It's important to compare plans and to consult with your veterinarian, BBB notes. The Brainerd Daily Dispatch (Minn.) (1/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm."
--Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette,
French novelist and performer

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For 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping consumers find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2011, consumers turned to BBB more than 100 million times for Business Reviews on more than 4 million companies and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for 115 local, independent BBBs across the United States and Canada, as well as home to its national programs on dispute resolution and industry self-regulation.
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