September 16, 2019

Well, I’ll be a monkey’s uncle! Never in my dreams did I figure a tough street girl from Hell’s Kitchen (HK) would end up living a dream life with financial freedom.  Growing up in crime wonderland never afforded me anything monetarily, but gave me something much more valuable, the greatest entrepreneurial gift – a burning desire to make my life better.

I had little supervision as a child, as was the same for many of my peers.  We were left to our own devices most of the time.  For the most part this was great fun as we pulled pranks on strangers and played in open fire hydrants on hot summer days. On the flip side, our lack of supervision offered great opportunity in gangland. I had a few boneheaded friends who succumbed to this temptation and some lost their lives before the age of 20.

I have always loved dogs and find them to be the most optimistic creatures on earth. There were plenty of dogs that had it rough in HK, but they would always greet me with a wag of excitement in spi...

May 14, 2017

In a family of 12 children, my father, the oldest of six boys, was told at the age of 14 he was old enough to be on his own.  He found a garage apartment and began working as a mechanic.  He worked to learn the business then opened his own shop in El Campo, Texas at the age of 17. Shortly after, he met my mother and married her two years later.  I was the oldest of four girls and had an older brother.

My mom worked in the family business too by keeping the books and handling the administrative duties.  After preparing all of our meals each day and getting us off on the bus to school, my mom and my baby sister (who was not yet in school) would leave with my dad for the shop.  By the time we arrived home from school, my mom was always there to greet us. On weekends, after chores at home were done, all of us would often head to my dad’s shop to help him. This is where I learned a little about cars.  I learned how check the oil, change the oil, spark plugs and basic engine operati...

April 10, 2017

It depends.

Remember this always - "Entrepreneurs bring value to an idea."

One of the most common types of startup businesses is when someone decides they want to make their hobby into a business.

But let's be clear here.  Not all hobbies translate well into a business that creates an income.  I always advise fledgling entrepreneurs to follow their "interests", which may not exactly be a hobby.

For instance, if my hobby was collecting sewing thimbles or drink shot glasses from all over the world - that may make for an interesting hobby but it's doubtful I could get anyone to invest in it.

The great thing about business principals is that you can apply the same questions to a bootstrapped startup as you can a major startup funded by $10 million from a venture capitalist.

Ultimately, who is your customer?  How do you acquire/market to those identified customers?  What is your profit on each unit or service sold?  Do you have enough capital to sustain the business?  What makes your busines...

 The emergence and popularity of the TV show "Shark Tank" has helped to crystalize the thought processes used by potential businesses to evaluate investment opportunities in early stage or start-up businesses.

I've received business plans on a napkin (really!) and business plans that are hundreds of pages.

It's really quite simple to grab an investor's attention with the right mix of quality information about your business or start-up.

First, we need to clearly understand what it is the business does?  Can this be described in a few sentences?   If not, work on it.  Secondly, does the business have any revenue or profits yet?  If it doesn't it certainly isn't a deal killer for me personally, but my focus is on startups whereas many investors focus on later stage funding.  Revenue and profits help however, because it demonstrates there is at least "some" demand for the product or service and there is "some" evidence you can deliver it.

Next is how much are you looking fo...

This is the time of year when I have to chuckle when people get excited they are getting their tax refund.  

It's like a gift from heaven our benevolent federal government sends you a refund, just at the right time when you need it!

Few people realize if they are getting a refund they were paying too much in taxes all year long.

Our brilliant lawmakers have saddled the American public with a tax code that is over 55,000 pages in which even the most astute tax professionals can't agree how to interpret.

Over the years Congress has picked winners and losers using the tax code to reward cronies and punish enemies.  It doesn't take those in a tin foil hat to realize the IRS can be weaponized - and is on a regular basis.

When you have a small business that is not incorporated, you file a Schedule C with your income taxes that details the profit and loss from your business.  If you operated at a loss, it is a direct reduction of your taxable income.  A family making $50,000 per year in taxab...

January 29, 2017

In a family of 12 children, my father, the oldest of six boys, was told at the age of 14 he was old enough to be on his own.  He found a garage apartment and began working as a mechanic.  He worked to learn the business then opened his own shop in El Campo, Texas at the age of 17. Shortly after, he met my mother and married her two years later.  I was the oldest of four girls and had an older brother.

My mom worked in the family business too by keeping the books and handling the administrative duties.  After preparing all of our meals each day and getting us off on the bus to school, my mom and my baby sister (who was not yet in school) would leave with my dad for the shop.  By the time we arrived home from school, my mom was always there to greet us. On weekends, after chores at home were done, all of us would often head to my dad’s shop to help him. This is where I learned a little about cars.  I learned how check the oil, change the oil, spark plugs and basic engine operati...

November 27, 2016

I've had my share of detractors in life.

You will too.

It's so easy for people to be negative about someone else's dreams - especially those that don't have any.

Ask any entrepreneur and they will tell you that had they listened to all of those who gave them unsolicited advice about their business idea, startup or invention - they would have never taken the first step to get it off the ground.

The very minute you choose to be different, you will be treated differently.  For the ambitious person who has the energy, drive, persistence and desire - anything is possible.

Unfortunately for many, those closest to them subscribe to the "Crab Theory" I detail in a chapter of my book, "Unemployable!".

You can safely put dozens of live crabs in a bucket with little worry any will escape as the very minute one pulls itself up by their claws to edge of the bucket, those beneath them will latch on to the crab reaching for freedom and bring them down off edge of escape.    

Unfortunatel...

November 14, 2016

Remember this always - "Entrepreneurs bring value to an idea." One of the most common types of startup businesses is when someone decides they want to make their hobby into a business.

It's really quite simple to grab an investor's attention with the right mix of quality information about your business or start-up.

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