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Preparing for the New Year: Time Management


As things are starting to slow down a little bit – holiday marketing campaigns launched, holiday parties past, food still settling in our stomachs – it is a good time to look back at how we handled the seemingly perpetual time crunch from October through December. It gives a great reference to where things could be tightened up and improved upon going into this new year, so we can set ourselves up for success! 

Gearing up for the new year, it’s all about structure. Learning how to fine tune your time management will lay the foundation for your success in 2020. As any successful business owner will tell you, managing your time is the only way to reach your goals. To help you march full speed into 2020, we have created a list of a few basics for time management success:

1. Plan ahead

It may seem like common sense, but so often we neglect to do this. Especially when it comes to young entrepreneurs, the tendency is to fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants and rely on their memory to get things done. While independent people will struggle with creating a structure, managing your time intentionally will be the difference between success and failure.    

Start with making a list of everything you want to accomplish at work the next day and figure out what will be the best time to finish each task. This shouldn’t be limited to only work tasks, but also anything that you need to take care of in your personal life as well, so there are no obstacles keeping you from success. 

2. Reassess 

Even if you think you have a solid plan set, new projects and deadlines will likely arise throughout the day.  When this happens, stay calm and simply re-assess your day. You will need to take the time to adjust your schedule accordingly and plan out how you will accomplish your new tasks.  You may feel like you don’t have time to stop and think about how you will get things done, but believe me, taking 30 minutes to plan will pay off in the end; you will actually save time because you will know how to handle everything that comes your way with ease.

3. Prioritize

Priorities tell us where to start, or what to focus on. It is extremely important when you are planning your day, because if things start to become overwhelming or get out of hand, you just focus on the priority. You want to tackle the toughest, most important or urgent project first, so you can ensure they are done and done well. As an added bonus, you won’t have to worry about them for the rest of the day! Next, schedule in the rest of your tasks including certain blocks of time to answer phone calls and emails; keep to these times to eliminate unnecessary distractions (this means staying off your cell phone too!).  You may have to fight the urge to respond to an email the second you see the mail icon pop up in the corner of your computer screen, but it is for a good cause. Pauses or turn off notifications if you need to. 

4. Keep Your Calendar Nearby

Whether you like the good ole’ paper bound planners, your digital calendar app, or a mix of the two, it is practically life-saving to utilize your calendar. If ensures that you are not double booking, it gives you the opportunity to plan things in advance, and it can give you a big picture view of where your time is going / has gone in the past. It’s a fantastic tool to keep you on track with your planning. 

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Say “No”

We all want to be team players but sometimes being too much of a good sport can cause you to be overwhelmed. It is, without a doubt, impossible to say “yes” to everything that comes your way.  In order to manage your time effectively there will be times when you have to say “no.” Choose which tasks are the most significant and will have the biggest impact on you and your work and say yes to those; say no to those that will not.  You can be polite when declining invitations or ideas, or may even be able to come back to them at a later time. If there are too many things that you feel are extremely important and need to be done, it may be time to delegate.

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate

We all find ourselves in those situations or projects that truly require an extra set (or two) of hands. I find the best way to delegate is to politely reach out to members of your team, explain how you are feeling, and simply ask for help. If you are willing to take the time to explain why you are asking for help and what a great impact your co-workers will have, they will likely be more than happy to help you. If you ask for help, however, you need to trust in others to do the job you have asked of them. Feeling as if you should be watching over their shoulders likely means that you didn’t choose the best fit to assist, or that possibly the project is too important and should be handled directly by you. 

Looking to Start a Business?

With the opportunities for small businesses booming, why wait another moment. What else is keeping you down? Financial restraints have been a complaint for many of the dreamers, limiting themselves to their immediate funds. There is an alternative. If you have the dreams and decent credit, Small Business Loans and No Doc Loans are available to you. Our goal is to provide you with the knowledge you need and the resources available to make your dream a reality. Give us a call – we have the education and the perspective to help you obtain the loans you need for your small business. Visit our website or give us a call to find out what financial backing is available to make your business soar!

Unsecured Finances has over 10 years in the consulting business! We specialized in educating and assisting clients on acquiring Unsecured Business Loans and Start-Up Business Specialty Loans including; Unsecured No Documentation (No-Doc Stated Income) Loans, Unsecured Business Loans, and Unsecured Start-Up Business Loans and Lines of Credit from $10,000 to $500,000 without Assets.

Apply on our website to find out if you qualify, or call today for a free consultation: 1-888-294-2584

Planning a Last Minute Holiday Party

Here we are already nearing the end of the year and holiday season. While many of you have likely had your holiday parties already, some of you may still be holding off – either because you aren’t sure weather it’s necessary or just because you think it’s too late. We’re here to let you know that it is never too late to execute your holiday party, and it is absolutely necessary 😉

Why do we need a holiday party?

While it should be a season of fun and joy, it’s often a season of stress and anxiety. Not only is your team dealing with added family holiday obligations, but many are likely feeling the extra stress of shortened holiday deadlines, end-of-the-year demands, and frazzled coworkers… Yikes! With that in mind, it’s important to take a load off and celebrate this magical time of year with your colleagues and coworkers. A corporate holiday party is a perfect time to reflect on the accomplishments of the year, look ahead at what’s to come, and just enjoy each other’s company. So here are a few ideas to make your Holiday Party ROCK!

1. Get out of the office.

Everyone loves a field trip, and when a season is as stressful as this one, what better way to recharge than to separate yourselves from all that office brain-chatter; your computer, to do list, and blinking voicemail light. Besides just creating a more festive atmosphere for your team, there are a plethora of benefits of hosting meetings and events off-site, from improving company morale (which in turn reduces health issues and increases productivity) to a much-needed change of scenery. If you plan to go all out for your holiday gathering and have a large guest list, booking a corporate event space or banquet hall with additional audio/visual equipment, parking, and room to move around are a necessity. It may be cheaper to pull something together at your existing office space, but if you really want to make the event special and rewarding for attendees, then an off-site holiday party venue is well worth the price.

2. Holiday Trivia

Who doesn’t love trivia – or a little friendly competition for that matter! Trivia is a great way to spark some interesting conversations, get people to mingle across departments, and perhaps form some unexpected new bonds. From popular holiday movies and songs to best-selling toys and gifts throughout the years, there are plenty of different directions you can go with holiday trivia, which makes it a versatile activity for any team. 

3. Unusual Holiday Treats

Everywhere you look, there are decadent sweets all around the holiday landscape – stores, your friend’s house, and even the notorious candy bowl at the front desk. While it’s perfectly fine to indulge and enjoy, it’s also important to keep health and fitness top of mind. If your company has a wellness program or a health-focused initiative, why not put that in the forefront during the holiday season? You could have everyone bring in their best sugar-free, gluten-free, low-fat, or vegan/vegetarian holiday treat for others to sample and enjoy or have a caterer whip some healthy options up. All the holiday goodness with none of the guilt!

This is also a fantastic opportunity to highlight foods from around the world. You’ll find tons of amazing holiday recipes with a simple search, some of which have even evolved into our traditional holiday menu items here in the United States. You can bring these foods together through volunteering in the office, or hiring a caterer.

4. Gift Rap

Gift wrapping is one of those holiday tasks that many would prefer to avoid. But if you make it into a party with many helping hands, everyone’s load is a little lighter, and the stress a little less. The company can provide wrapping paper, bows, and ribbon, or everyone can bring in some of their own favorite paper to share. Once the supplies are ready to go, turn on some holiday tunes and work together to get all the presents wrapped and ready to go (like Santa’s little elves). You’ll find that local charities and shelters can also use a helping hand wrapping gifts and donations this time of year, so it’s a great way to give back and spread Christmas joy to others who may be less fortunate.

To “wrap it all up”, you can end the party with delicious food and if you’re feeling particularly brave, a little holiday rap session. Just like a karaoke type of deal, encourage coworkers to get onstage with holiday background music and battle it out with each other while creating their own holiday flavored rap lyrics! Belly laughs, guaranteed.  

5. Create a Local Scavenger Hunt

The neighborhood is always a little extra magical during the holiday season, with festive lights, window displays, food and events, so go ahead and take advantage of it! A scavenger hunt can be a fun and memorable way to celebrate the season and spark some friendly competition with your team. Map out a route around some of the most festive parts of the area, and have a list of items that every team should photograph themselves next to!

6. Give Back as Team

It’s the season for giving and being thankful, so why not take the time to give back to your community? Bell ringing, food drives, community meals, and other holiday volunteer opportunities are plentiful this time of year and provide a wonderful opportunity for colleagues to bond and help the community at the same time. After you spend some time giving back as a team, you can meet back together to debrief and share stories, insights, and the results of your efforts. If you can’t find a date or organization that works for your team, consider taking at-will donations for a charity during your holiday gathering.

7. Holiday Painting or Craft Party

What is better than a gift that is truly personal and from the heart? With so many people that are difficult to shop for, or the limited budget with which to use, creating a handcrafted gift is a wonderful way to show someone you care! From ornaments to canvas to glass, there are plenty of painting and craft ideas available online that allow your team members to showcase their creativity and holiday spirit. Not only will they have fun creating their masterpieces, but you’ll have some great photos for social media and some holiday decor to display around the office until the season is over. We love seeing all the smiles and joy it brings! No skill required, just fun!

However you decide to celebrate the season with your team, just make it happen and make it special! It will make a world of difference and they will be so grateful for the relaxation away from the stressful work environment!

Looking to Start a Business?

With the opportunities for small businesses booming, why wait another moment. What else is keeping you down? Financial restraints have been a complaint for many of the dreamers, limiting themselves to their immediate funds. There is an alternative. If you have the dreams and decent credit, Small Business Loans and No Doc Loans are available to you. Our goal is to provide you with the knowledge you need and the resources available to make your dream a reality. Give us a call – we have the education and the perspective to help you obtain the loans you need for your small business. Visit our website or give us a call to find out what financial backing is available to make your business soar!

Unsecured Finances has over 10 years in the consulting business! We specialized in educating and assisting clients on acquiring Unsecured Business Loans and Start-Up Business Specialty Loans including; Unsecured No Documentation (No-Doc Stated Income) Loans, Unsecured Business Loans, and Unsecured Start-Up Business Loans and Lines of Credit from $10,000 to $500,000 without Assets.

Apply on our website to find out if you qualify, or call today for a free consultation: 1-888-294-2584

Preparing for the New Year: Small Business Financial Planning


The new year is fast approaching and it’s time to make sure you are setting your business up for success! Creating a solid financial plan is the only way to make sure your business is achieving your goals. You have to be able to anticipate both your income and expenditures so you can forecast properly and take advantage of any opportunity to reinvest into the growth of your business. 

When it comes to financial planning, there is no better time to start, than the present. 2020 is fast approaching, and you want to be able to grab the bull by the horns. So what if you are new at this? If you have never created a financial plan for your business, we are here to help you because, well, that’s our business! Here are 8 of our favorite steps to creating a financial plan.

  1. Marketing Costs

Convert marketing strategies into expenditures. Strategies depict the course of action you want to take. A strategy might be to advertise in local newspapers or sponsor charity events to increase customer awareness. Do a cost estimate for each strategy.

  1. Revenue Flow

Create a revenue model. Determine the assumptions you want to use for key variables such as unit sales, number of customers, and prices for your products or services. Calculate month-by-month revenue projections using the assumptions. Build formulas into the spreadsheet that allow you to change the variables, doing “what-if scenarios” until the revenue forecast reflects what you believe is realistically attainable.

  1. Goods Sold

Forecast costs of goods sold. Use your historical cost of goods sold percentage as a guide and modify it based on any changes you anticipate in the cost of materials, finished goods, or production costs.

  1. Administrative Expense

Forecast general and administrative expense. Project your expected facilities costs, such as rent, utilities, insurance, or recurring legal expenses. Again use prior year numbers as guide but make sure you allow for increases that typically occur.

  1. Personnel Expense

Prepare a personnel expense forecast. Include additions to personnel that will be needed to carry out the strategies you devised for the upcoming year. A strategy of improving response time to customer inquiries could require adding customer service personnel, which would raise the amount forecast.

  1. Business Upgrades

Forecast business upgrades. Be sure to estimate the costs of any improvements you want to make to the business. Investing in your business upgrades – anything from equipment purchases to facilities expansion to extra marketing costs – is the only way to grow. We are available to help your business get the funding you need to invest in your upgrades, so don’t hesitate to call!

  1. Review the Plan

Review and finalize the financial plan. Look at the month-by-month projected results. If cash balances appear low for certain months, shift discretionary expenditures like advertising out of those months and into months where revenues are higher.

  1. Extra Holiday Budgets

With all the preparation, you have to factor in the budget. Why? Because you have to spend money to make money, and the Holiday Season is all about utilizing the increase to your best interest. Marketing pushes, extra inventory, extra staffing, emergency funding – it’s all part of an effective Holiday strategy. Apply with us today to see what type of cushion we can provide for the holidays!

Tip

Preparing the financial plan gives you the opportunity to review all expenditures you made last year and determine if there are any potential savings that could be achieved through greater operational efficiency or switching to lower cost suppliers.

Warning

Be sure to review actual financial results each month against the numbers in the forecast. This analysis will give you vital information about changes you could consider making such as cutting costs if revenues are substantially below forecast.

Looking to Start a Business?

With the opportunities for small businesses booming, why wait another moment. What else is keeping you down? Financial restraints have been a complaint for many of the dreamers, limiting themselves to their immediate funds. There is an alternative. If you have the dreams and decent credit, Small Business Loans and No Doc Loans are available to you. Our goal is to provide you with the knowledge you need and the resources available to make your dream a reality. Give us a call – we have the education and the perspective to help you obtain the loans you need for your small business. Visit our website or give us a call to find out what financial backing is available to make your business soar!

Unsecured Finances has over 10 years in the consulting business! We specialized in educating and assisting clients on acquiring Unsecured Business Loans and Start-Up Business Specialty Loans including; Unsecured No Documentation (No-Doc Stated Income) Loans, Unsecured Business Loans, and Unsecured Start-Up Business Loans and Lines of Credit from $10,000 to $500,000 without Assets.

Apply on our website to find out if you qualify, or call today for a free consultation: 1-888-294-2584

Preparing Your Business for the New Year; Business Strategies

Strategizing is basically brainstorming and structuring a plan to achieve a goal. Any successful business starts with a plan, a concept – a strategy. With any new or continuing effort, you will create a strategy. It’s a roadmap to success. When you are building a new business, it is absolutely vital to create a solid strategy for your initial business plan. But, strategy doesn’t stop there – you will go on to structure plans in various areas of your business, implement them, review them and then write a new strategy. So if this idea is new to you, let us explain a few of main types of strategies you will need to become familiar with when running a business. 

Business Strategy

How are you going to run your business overall? What is the big picture? Yeah, you know that you want to be successful and make lots of money, but how are you going to get there? Have you ever created a business plan or business strategy before? To many new business owners, this is a totally new concept. If you are one of the newbies learning all about the best ways to create a solid business strategy, head on over to our friends at Business Case Studies and see different formats of successful strategies that have been used by the best in the business. What better way to learn than to see what has worked for those before you? One thing is for sure, however you decide to learn about strategy, it is important to create one. Without a plan, your business is doomed to wander aimlessly through the competitive landscape, unprepared for battle. 

Financial Strategy

Okay so next step, you’ve got a plan to make that money – great! But with great power comes great responsibility, right? Before you start making your profit, and before you even spend your first cent on your business, you need to have a financial structure in place. What are your costs? What are your projected sales? Will you need financing? How does that cost factor in and why? While these are all the basic questions that your plan will address, you still have to know how to build effectively around them. As a business, you need to be able to anticipate your needs, as well as potential obstacles. What happens if all your new equipment breaks? What if your initial product or service is flawed? What if you need a bigger team than expected? While there are endless amounts of potential issues, what you need to worry about addressing and planning for are the issues that are most likely to arise in your industry. This is where doing your research is absolutely necessary. Need help developing a dynamic financial strategy for the new year? Check out the article from BDC about 6 Steps to Create Your Company’s Financial Plan.  

Marketing Strategy

Once you have your business plan and financial structure in place, the next important step is to focus on investing in your marketing. Too many new businesses skimp on this part of the puzzle, because they either don’t have the money to implement a marketing strategy, or they don’t deem it necessary. Marketing is one of the most important factors in growing your business – what good is it if you have an amazing product or service but no one knows about it? Some new business owners just don’t understand what marketing is. They may think it’s just posting on social media, or putting those annoying coupon flyers onto car windshields. On the contrary, it is so much more – it is anything you do to get the word out about your business. It could be as simple as having a conversation at a coffee shop about what you do. 

Marketing Companies and Specialists are there to help you if this is not an area you excel in, but however you do it, it needs to be done and it needs to be created with a purpose. Just like your business and financial strategy, your marketing strategy starts with an initial concept and then evolves over time to fine tune based on the data you gather. Trust us, you don’t want to skip out on this part. If you need the funding to invest in your marketing, we have solutions for you just give us a call. 

Looking to Start a Business?

With the opportunities for small businesses booming, why wait another moment. What else is keeping you down? Financial restraints have been a complaint for many of the dreamers, limiting themselves to their immediate funds. There is an alternative. If you have the dreams and decent credit, Small Business Loans and No Doc Loans are available to you. Our goal is to provide you with the knowledge you need and the resources available to make your dream a reality. Give us a call – we have the education and the perspective to help you obtain the loans you need for your small business. Visit our website or give us a call to find out what financial backing is available to make your business soar!

Unsecured Finances has over 10 years in the consulting business! We specialized in educating and assisting clients on acquiring Unsecured Business Loans and Start-Up Business Specialty Loans including; Unsecured No Documentation (No-Doc Stated Income) Loans, Unsecured Business Loans, and Unsecured Start-Up Business Loans and Lines of Credit from $10,000 to $500,000 without Assets.

Apply on our website to find out if you qualify, or call today for a free consultation: 1-888-294-2584