Practicing Generosity, Personally And Professionally


The holidays are a great opportunity to make charitable donations and practice generosity, but this is not a practice that you should reserve only for your personal life. Businesses that practice generosity to both employees and the community not only do good and benefit others, they build a positive reputation and gain beneficial exposure. Making sure that your company is generous is not only a nice thing to do, but it can be good for business as well.

Many large companies use the holidays as an opportunity to give bonuses for employees or make generous contributions to better the community. Perhaps you think that your company is too small to practice this level of giving, but there are still ways that you can give back. Some of the ways that your business can engage in generosity and kindness for those who work for you include the following:

  • Offer small monetary gifts, even if it is a small amount
  • Provide gift cards
  • Buy a meal for your staff
  • Host a company Christmas party
  • Offer an extra day or two off work
  • Add on extra vacation days

If you do not have the financial resources to give monetary gifts, there are plenty of ways that you can be generous. Be creative and think of ways that you can show your employees your appreciation in whatever manner you can. Additionally, the holidays offer your business the opportunity to give back to the community. From participating in community events and donating goods and services to taking the time to show up and serve, you will find that being generous is good for your spirit and the spirit of your company.

You don’t have to reserve your generosity for the holidays. As you enter the new year, you can think about and plan many different ways that your company can practice kindness and give back throughout the year ahead.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Resolutions To Start 2018 The Right Way


As we approach the end of the year, you may be thinking of ways that you can start the new year off on the right foot. Many people make New Year’s resolutions for the new year, resolving to improve or change in certain ways. The end of one year and the beginning of another offers you the opportunity to have a fresh start, both personally and in business. Don’t just make resolutions to get to the gym or eat healthier — make these resolutions for your business as well.

This annual tradition of self-improvement and change can be especially befitting for a business owner. As an entrepreneur, you may consider how one or several of the following resolutions can benefit your business:

  • Implement better time management strategies
  • Use social media more constructively and intentionally
  • Find ways to save money and use your resources wisely
  • Make plans to give back more
  • Make it a habit to practice self-care
  • Find ways to connect with your customers on a personal level
  • Focus on the growth and success of your employees

As the year winds down, this is an excellent opportunity to evaluate how you did in 2017. Take stock of your improvements and growth, and be honest about the areas where you could use improvement. A complete evaluation of your successes, failures, setbacks, frustrations and lessons learned can help you see where you should focus for the new year.

Your business is an important part of your life, and like other personal aspects of your life, there is almost always room for improvement and growth. Leverage the start of the new year to make new strides for your business. Your New Year’s resolutions can be whatever you need them to be for your business and its continued growth in 2018.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

How The Word “No” Can Be Good For Your Business


If you own your own business, you know how difficult it is to juggle all of the things in your life. Sometimes, you may feel that your personal life is struggling because you are spending the majority of your time focusing on your business, while other times you may feel that your business is on the back burner because of things going on in your personal life. It may feel like it’s impossible to juggle everything — and that’s because it is. Many people think that in order to have it all, you must do it all, but that is simply not true. In fact, you may have more success when you start saying no to certain things.

It’s perfectly okay to say no to unnecessary complications, even if you feel guilty for doing so. You may not be able to spend time with your family, run your business, organize the school bake sale, cook dinner every night and still feel like a sane person. You must get to a point where you give yourself permission to say no to the things that you simply cannot commit the time to, and in doing so, you have to learn how to say no to any guilt you may be tempted to place on yourself.

As a business owner, any business is good business — or is it? Are there certain products or services you currently offer that are “time suckers” that don’t give you much back in return? It’s okay to say no to aspects of your own business, and instead, you can get back more of your time, sanity and purpose simply by delegating, hiring support staff or rethinking what you currently offer.

And finally, you may need to learn how to say no to the bad habits that are slowly stealing your time, money and perhaps your health. Whether you have been giving yourself excuses to avoid the gym, wasting too much time on social media or spending too much money eating out every meal, a simple evaluation of your current habits can help you see where to cut corners. Saying no isn’t always pleasant, and it may not always make others happy, but ultimately, this practice can help you restore some peace to your busy life.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC

Making Your Business Partnerships Work Better


If you are one-half of a partnership, you know how difficult it can be to make this relationship work well long into the future. It is not easy to be the sole force behind a small business, and it can be quite complex to navigate the challenges that come with running a small business with one or more additional people. Many entrepreneurial ventures are partnerships, and it could be necessary for the success and longevity of your business to know how to make this critical relationship function well and remain beneficial for all involved.

Like all relationships in your life, clear communication is one of the essential principles behind making your partnership work well. Regularly communicating is critical for the smooth operation of all facets of your business. All communication between partners should be honest and open — negative feelings, dishonesty and manipulation are all things can can quickly derail your business. If there are issues between parties, communicating openly about an effective resolution will not only make your professional life less complicated, it can save the future of your small business.

Partnerships can quickly fall apart when parties do not see eye to eye. While it is natural and normal for there to be differences in opinions between partners, overall, your ultimate goals should align. Your business cannot go in two different directions at once, and it is prudent to ensure that all partners have similar objectives about the current trajectory you are on. Regular conversations about vision and future goals can help you all stay on track together.

Running a business is no easy task, and it certainly isn’t any easier when there are differences in opinions and approaches between partners. A partnership can be a delicate arrangement, and like all important relationships in your life, it is worthwhile to invest in it, work on problems as soon as they arise and do what is necessary to make it stronger.

By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC