For a business to thrive, you need more than employees: You need leaders. Develop the team you need by offering your staff opportunities to grow. Assign a task and let them truly own it for themselves, giving them the latitude to make decisions themselves and contact outside partners to make it work. "They'll make mistakes; that’s part of the education process," writes business expert Brian Moran. "But they'll hopefully learn from their errors and not make the same mistakes twice. Their growth will help your business thrive." (From "5 Ways to Develop Leaders in Your Company," by Brian Moran)
2. Learn to say no.
It turns out work-life balance isn't as hard to come by as busy business owners would imagine. It starts with one simple word that's hard for many to say: "No." OPEN Forum community member Natascha Thomson, and the owner and founder of Marketing Xlerator, says saying no helps her take more control of her workload and limits the amount of stress she feels. (From "5 Secrets to Finding Work-Life Balance," by Julie Bawden Davis)
Many talented high school and college students are already in the process of lining up summer internships. Start looking for these great additions to your company now—post the position up on college job boards as well as sites like Internships.com and Internmatch.com. (From "6 Tips for Finding a Fabulous Summer Intern," by Kelly Spors)
AngelList, a platform that's part startup job board/part investor research tool, is a great way to raise momentum around your fundraising efforts, writes Michael Simpson, founder of DJZ, a music discovery site. "Add recent investors, and have them promote you to their followers," he writes. "Remember that AngelList is frequently the first place that potential investors will look when trying to learn about your company’s raise, so you must manage it accordingly." (From "9 Ways to Speed Up Your Fundraising," by Michael Simpson)
Remove the yoke that is your phone over the weekend so you can take the break you deserve. You can put a hold on responding to all business-related emails over the weekend. If your willpower isn't that strong (and really, whose is?), OPEN Forum contributor Erika Napoletano has step-by-step instructions on how to stop your inbox flow from Friday to Sunday. (From "Farewell, Working Weekends: A Guide to Getting Your Life Back," by Erika Napoletano)
As rumors swirl that Google will be parceling off parts of Google+, its attempt at a social network to rival Facebook and Twitter, some business owners wonder if they should stop putting resources into the site. But don't stop just yet. Using Google+ is a great way for businesses to get SEO and appear on search engines. (From "Should You Give Up on Using Google+ For Your Business?," by Kelly Spors)
Getting hacked can hurt a businesses bottom line and decimate its customer base, as retail giant Target learned the hard way. One way to avoid being hacked is to set up two-step verification on all your accounts, writes security expert Robert Siciliano. "With a two-factor-verified system, knowing your password is only the first step," he explains. "To get any further, hackers will need to know the second factor, which is a special code (another password) that only you know and that changes every time you log in. Accessing your account will be a virtual impossibility." (From "The Best Way to Protect Against Data Breaches," by Robert Siciliano)
Top-down hierarchies were originally conceived to promote efficiency, but today's smart business owner knows they do anything but. Businesses that stick to hierarchies are only slowing down their business and keeping it from growing, writes OPEN Forum contributor Alexandra Levit. (From "5 Reasons Hierarchy is Killing Your Culture," by Alexandra Levit)
The advantages of hiring a star talent may seem numerous, but a recent study found there's only one benefit of doing it: attracting other star talent in the future. They don't have much positive impact on a business, and can actually do more harm than good. So if you are thinking about bringing in a big name to join your company, consider if they'll be a good fit for your company and existing top talent, writes OPEN Forum contributor Vivian Giang. (From "Here's The One Reason Why Hiring Star Talent Will Benefit Your Company," by Vivian Giang)
And make sure that conference is specific to your industry, writes OPEN Forum contributor Jason Brick. It's a great way to network and meet clients who could use your services. (From "7 Ways to Turn Spring Energy into Summer Profits," by Jason Brick)
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