Cliff Ennico's "Succeeding in Your Business" column offers straightforward small business advice and tips. Ennico is best known for his PBS series "Money Hunt," as well as his weekly program on the internet radio station smartbusiness.com. Based in Fairfield, Connecticut, he acts as corporate legal counsel for many up-and-coming companies, and teaches courses in business law and industrial organization at several colleges and institutions. He is also a regular speaker at small business conferences, seminars, and workshops.
I don't often review new business books because, quite frankly, most of them don't have much to say (unless they're mine, of course).
"A number of years ago some friends and I formed a nonprofit organization to benefit a certain group in our community. It was granted tax-exempt status by the IRS under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Since 2008, when eBay stopped its annual eBay Live! trade show, internet retailers -- retailers who sell merchandise on their own website or a large online platform, such as eBay, Amazon and Etsy -- have been looking for an event where they can learn about the latest marketing and management strategies, meet representatives from companies that provide goods and services to increase profits, and hey, just have a heck of a good time schmoozing with other retailers from around the country.
I have tried really hard to avoid commenting on politics and the presidential election. I think I'm the only syndicated columnist in the United States right now who hasn't weighed in on one side or the other, and believe me, I have tried to resist the temptation to do so as long as I could.
"I have a one-person management consulting practice. I'm doing extremely well since my expertise is in great demand -- maybe a little too well. I'm deluged with phone calls and emails, about 40 or more each day, every single one of which must be responded to.
I was amused to read an article in The Wall Street Journal last week about a human-resources consultant who developed a popular (and apparently very lucrative) program to help corporate HR executives "understand this young generation," the millennial generation.
I was sorry to hear that the reality TV star who was scheduled to be your commencement speaker today had to bow out at the last minute. I was delighted, however, when the trustees called me an hour ago and asked me to fill in.
Q: "I am trying to start a nonprofit organization to raise money for a local institution that has lost its state funding due to budget cuts.
Twice a year I have the privilege of speaking at a leading conference and exhibition for people who sell merchandise online: the Seller's Conference for Online Entrepreneurs.
Q: I'm starting a consulting business and have been asked to sign a nondisclosure agreement with my first client, a large multinational corporation.
Last week we covered six of the 12 biggest mistakes most small businesses make. Here, in my humble opinion, are the other six.
When setting up a limited liability company for a new business, one of the hardest tasks is figuring out how the company should be managed.
"I have an opportunity to buy a service business in my area.
"I've been looking to buy a business for some time now. My college graduate daughter has been out of work and living at home for two years, despite tons of effort and countless rejections, and I thought it might be a good idea for the two of us to own something where I could help her out for a while until she got the hang of things and could manage on her own.
In last week's column, we talked about some of the wrong ways to engage in "private labeling" on eBay, Amazon and other e-commerce websites -- buying someone else's merchandise (legally) and reselling it online at a significantly higher price under your own trademark or "brand label."
Here are some more New Year's Resolutions for business owners.
Dear Santa: Well, another year has gone by. My business is surviving, by a thread, but I'm still facing lots of challenges. You know I've been really, really good this year (maybe that's the problem with my business -- I'm too darned good for my own good and should borrow more from the "ruthless entrepreneur" playbook, but never mind).
"I am looking for an attorney who could provide my business with a master form of client agreement. We understand that your services are not cheap, but would like to know how much you would charge for this kind of document.
"A local nonprofit organization has asked me to join its board of directors. It's a real honor for me, and a cause I believe in, but I'm just a little nervous about my legal responsibilities. Could you tackle those at some point?"
"I started an online retail business earlier this year, and have generated so much income already that I know I'm going to get a Form 1099 from PayPal this year.