Recruiters: Managing Search Vendors

Recently, we’ve been diving into the ins and outs of recruiting – when to hire a recruiter and your relationship to your recruiter.  Now, we get into the kinds of recruiters and who to call for what purposes. In my last post, we talked about whether or not you want to own the recruiting process generally or manage professionals who …

Recently, we’ve been diving into the ins and outs of recruiting – when to hire a recruiter and your relationship to your recruiter.  Now, we get into the kinds of recruiters and who to call for what purposes. In my last post, we talked about whether or not you want to own the recruiting process generally or manage professionals who ...

Debunking the Hunt for a Recruiter

Graduation season always reminds me of insights I have gained from my favorite graduation speech of all time. In This is Water, David Foster Wallace begins with this anecdote: “There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, ‘Morning, boys, how’s the water?’ …

Graduation season always reminds me of insights I have gained from my favorite graduation speech of all time. In This is Water, David Foster Wallace begins with this anecdote: “There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, ‘Morning, boys, how’s the water?’ ...

Preventing Your Culture From Going to the Dogs!

Early in my career as a marketer, my best friend, Nancy Bauer and I had a marketing/special events company called Maslow & Pavlov. One day, we flipped a coin for who got what philosopher on their license plate and I lost – Nancy ended up with Maslow and I was “stuck” with Pavlov. I was disappointed because Maslow’s hierarchy of …

Early in my career as a marketer, my best friend, Nancy Bauer and I had a marketing/special events company called Maslow & Pavlov. One day, we flipped a coin for who got what philosopher on their license plate and I lost – Nancy ended up with Maslow and I was “stuck” with Pavlov. I was disappointed because Maslow’s hierarchy of ...

You Really Did Learn Everything in Kindergarten

Glassdoor’s annual list of the “25 Best Jobs in America” would lead you to believe that all you need to succeed in business today is a degree in computer science, statistics, accounting, or math. Undoubtedly, the list, heavily dominated by tech and finance careers, will send thousands of anxious students (and their parents) to career counselors seeking ways to add …

Glassdoor’s annual list of the “25 Best Jobs in America” would lead you to believe that all you need to succeed in business today is a degree in computer science, statistics, accounting, or math. Undoubtedly, the list, heavily dominated by tech and finance careers, will send thousands of anxious students (and their parents) to career counselors seeking ways to add ...

Making a List and Checking it Twice: Gearing Up to Hire in the New Year

The holidays have arrived. What a wonderful time of year! Lately, I have been reflecting on the meaning of the old verse “for everything there is a season.” This oft-quoted saying reminds me that our lives are driven by a constant flow of change. I find that the key to my happiness and the health of my business can best …

The holidays have arrived. What a wonderful time of year! Lately, I have been reflecting on the meaning of the old verse “for everything there is a season.” This oft-quoted saying reminds me that our lives are driven by a constant flow of change. I find that the key to my happiness and the health of my business can best ...

The Real Cost of a Bad Hire

There is nothing quite like that moment when you find and extend an offer to the right candidate! You just know that bringing her on is going to have an awesome impact on your business and you can’t wait for her to get started. Only sometimes, that impact isn’t awesome. Sometimes when the new hire starts working, she doesn’t click …

There is nothing quite like that moment when you find and extend an offer to the right candidate! You just know that bringing her on is going to have an awesome impact on your business and you can’t wait for her to get started. Only sometimes, that impact isn’t awesome. Sometimes when the new hire starts working, she doesn’t click ...

Delegate to Consolidate in Your Small Business

Time Management
Time Management (Photo credit: Intersection Consulting)

In business management, delegation is a critical element in productivity. Many entrepreneurs have such a strong desire to succeed; we want to complete all tasks on own to avoid feeling a lack of control and to ensure things are getting done “our way”. (Side note: Our way is not always the “right” way). There are two things I think of when defining leadership. The first thought is someone who initiates and second, identifies someone who has people around them in the same setting with less superior roles. In order to be a leader, there must be someone else to lead. In business and many other platforms, a leader creates the rules, laws or assignments for others to follow or carry out.

When delegation is done properly it will save you time, develops your team and prepares a successor. After all, most of us are entrepreneurs because we want financial freedom and most of all FREEDOM. So, the sure way to obtain that is to train someone to be a productive member of the business. In order for a leader to be effective, delegation is key. You are only one person. You can’t do EVERYTHING. Maybe in the beginning when things are just getting started you can use time management to take care of almost everything but as your business grows, it is important to divide task and allow others to assist.

A strong business structure depends on weight or tasks to be evenly distributed. If there are too many items assigned to one person, it may cause that person to be less efficient and therefore the results of their performance may be less than acceptable. The main purpose of delegating tasks is to consolidate. You want your business to be more coherent as a whole, stronger and more solid. As a business owner, some things cannot be delegated to other people. Delegating task isn’t an excuse for you to be lazy, it allows you as a leader to have more time to focus on your responsibilities on the “To Do” list.

It is important to recognize that in the beginning we may not have the funds to hire full time support and there are many ways to still get the help you need. Depending on your field, you may be able to hire an intern. Many students need real business experience to put on their resume upon graduating from college. Without it, getting a job after graduation will seem almost unattainable. If you have the time to train someone, an intern would be a great choice. Eventually, the intern will be an asset to you and by giving them a job you are an asset to them as well. If you do not have the time to train, you can still hire an expert to assist without spending a lot of money. Hire a virtual assistant. Virtual assistants are usually experts in certain niches and in many cases have promotions to give you a discount on services. One virtual assistant company who specializes in many areas of business is KQ Associates, visit .

Now you have just multiplied yourself and successfully divided tasks to consolidate your business. Although there are a few people involved now, it is still one unit working to accomplish the same end result.

Lydia D. Washington, CEO

KQ Associates  – Your professional source for trusted administrative support that keeps you safe and moving forward.

The Critical Importance of Good Advice

Alexandria Small Business Development CenterSmall businesses and small nonprofits often face situations where it may make sense to get expert guidance to avoid costly mistakes. At the very earliest concept for a business venture, there are resources that can provide objective feedback and suggest approaches you might not have considered. The Alexandria Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provides accessible and experienced resources through its staff and its new SCORE counselor. These experts are adept at identifying areas that even the best of planning might have overlooked, and every entrepreneur benefits from getting a fresh perspective. With comprehensive feedback at the earliest stages, your strategies, approaches, and next steps are much better defined. In addition, the services of the SBDC and SCORE are without cost, leaving you more resources to spend on starting and growing your business.

During these counseling sessions, entrepreneurs may identify issues that require further research. Often, these include zoning and other locational considerations. They also include licenses, permits, and potential restrictions. Forewarned of these requirements, the entrepreneur can make better plans with fewer surprises. City staff is also ready to help the entrepreneur with preliminary and detailed planning – all before leases or other obligations are signed. The City now has small business facilitators who are entirely focused on helping novices through permitting and licensing processes. They can be reached at 703-746-4199 or 4268.

For help with site selection and advice on leasing, the entrepreneur should consult the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership (AEDP). Their expert staff knows the City, the real estate market, rental rates / sales comps, and can assist you with the site selection process for leases, sales or development. Their services are free and an essential stop before anyone considers, much less signs, a lease. Additionally, the Alexandria SBDC has a “Leasing Checklist” on its website. Both AEDP and SBDC staffs can advise you on Alexandria neighborhoods, their civic and business groups, and how to make the best entry with your business.

Financing is another area where entrepreneurs may need to get advice before making a formal application. Every application you make could affect your credit score, and being declined reduces your prospects with other lenders. Meeting with the SBDC’s business analyst – a retired banker – will help you strengthen your presentation to a lender, much like preparing with a coach before an interview. The earlier that preparation takes place, the better.

In addition to the free economic development resources like the SBDC, SCORE, and AEDP, there are other professionals whose expertise will save entrepreneurs many headaches – and dollars – if they are consulted early-on. Attorneys and accountants should be part of your management team from the start, and human resources consultants can help you avoid potential pitfalls as you start hiring employees. Alexandria SBDC keeps lists of reliable professionals for a broad range of small business matters, and we welcome your contacting us for referrals.

For more information, visit www.alexandriasbdc.org or contact Alexandria SBDC at 703-778-1292 or [email protected]

 

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