This week’s top stories include small business advice covering the following four topics:
- How To Drive Long-Term Startup Success In Turbulent Times
- 26 Questions to Help You Decide If a Late-in-Life Business Is Right for You
- How to Make a Real Difference Teaching Online Courses
- Why Your Tax Return May Spark Interest From The IRS
Each week we scour all the top business-related magazines and newspapers for articles with the best advice for the small business owner, so you do not have to.
How To Drive Long-Term Startup Success In Turbulent Times
By: Abdo Riani
“There is a tide in the affairs of men. Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune,” William Shakespeare. Business is all about seizing opportunities. Understandably, many entrepreneurs see turbulent times as periods of deceleration in venture initiation, innovation, and growth. When the going gets tough, most entrepreneurs will pass on incredible opportunities leaving all the rewards to the few who seize and persist.
In fact, studies show that opportunity recognition and innovation in tough economic periods are stronger determinants of startup success than in periods of economic prosperity. Research further shows that the novelty of the product and service opportunities captured and introduced by startups launched during weak economic periods is significantly higher than solutions introduced in a thriving economy.
The results can be explained by entrepreneurs’ willingness to make bolder decisions focused on long-term returns. Since economic activity generally declines in slow economic periods and because most entrepreneurs will prioritize survival and short-term profits over innovation, leaving opportunities on the table, those who invest to create, reap the benefits. Here are three key imperatives that startups should follow to drive long-term success in turbulent times.
Related Post: Six Ways to Make Money in a Bad Economy
26 Questions to Help You Decide If a Late-in-Life Business Is Right for You
By: Rick Terrien
How do you know if starting a business is the right path for you? And how do you know when the time is right to lay the groundwork for the next chapter of your work life? If your answer is that you’ll figure it out when you get there, then you’d better start figuring it out soon. Creating new income streams with a new enterprise is entirely possible, but it takes time and resources. It’s always best to start small, start slow and start smart—with some self-assessment.
When you ask yourself some simple questions about where you’ll be working at 60 or 65, don’t see work as a burden to live through. See it as a path to liberation in the later years of your life. Ask yourself:
How to Make a Real Difference Teaching Online Courses
By: Aimee Tariq
E-learning has made great strides in recent years with more instructors and thought leaders than ever creating online courses. But there’s been an admitted lapse in actual content integration. EdSurge reported that only between 5 and 15 percent of students who start online courses end up finishing. That should be disheartening to course owners, not because of the money — courses are usually pay-to-access — but because what you teach online can really make a difference.
There are adjustments online teachers can make to amplify the e-learning process, making it transformative for every student, even if they never meet face-to-face. At the heart of it, online instructors should want to make these changes, simply to make a difference in the lives of their students — which could lead to word-of-mouth referrals and other business advantages.
Why Your Tax Return May Spark Interest From The IRS
By: Sarah O’Brien
The IRS will handle an estimated 150 million returns this filing season, with the deadline set for April 15 (although that could be pushed back as part of an economic stimulus package being considered by the U.S. government). As of Feb. 28, the agency had received more than 59 million returns and issued 45.5 million refunds averaging $3,064.
While most people will never face an audit — only 0.45% were audited in fiscal year 2019 — there are other types of IRS inquiries, such as a notice of income-reporting discrepancy and proposed additional tax due. Those communications fall short of an official audit, which the IRS gets three years to initiate after the challenged return is filed.
Related Post: You Need to Know Your Small Business Tax Forms
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