Starting a Business – 10 Reasons Why Small Businesses Fail to Thrive

Kathy, a skilled massage therapist, called me to discuss what she needed to know to start her own massage therapy clinic. She had been in the industry for over ten years, and was very skilled at working with her clients.

She worked for another clinic and felt she was ready to start a business of her own. However, like many want-to-be entrepreneurs, she possessed the technical skillsmassage therapybut possessed little business management experience, and no self-employment experience.

For many want-to-be entrepreneurs, discovering why businesses fail is a smart research project. It helps to uncover personal weaknesses, as well as begin to build up inherent strengths before investing in becoming self-employed.

It also helps them better understand the dynamics of the industry they will be competing. For example, if competition is intense because of a large number of massage therapists in a geographic area, we can expect that there will be less market share per clinic, downward price pressure, and lower profit potential; this makes for difficult going, especially in the start-up phase of the business.

Following are 10 reasons why small businesses fail to thrive. If you have an existing business, it might help to determine why your business is not growing.

1. Mistaking a business for a hobby. Just because you love something does not mean you can successfully convert it into a business. Too often we feel others share our passion, and we bank starting a new business on it. Research your business idea and make sure it is viable.

2. Poor planning. Yes, you must have a business plan. It can be a 3-page plan for the simplest of businesses or a 40+-page plan for a more complex business opportunity. The point is you are prepared to focus on your business’ goals and vision, and you have a good idea of what you need to do to put your plan into action. By going through a business planning exercise, you also may have unearthed what problems may arise, and how you are going to handle them, if they do. In addition, financially can you launch the business? It takes a lot of time to build a business; 60% of business start-ups fail within six months after opening. Lack of cash flow and undercapitalization is the culprit.

3. Entrepreneurial excitement. Entrepreneurs often get excited about new ideas, but are unable to determine if they have a “true opportunity”. Part of an effective business strategy (here is the business plan, again) is determining which markets you will and will not serve, as well as what products you will or will not offer. Before deciding to undertake a new business activity ask yourself, “Do I have the time and skill to implement this?”

4. Risking everything on one endeavor. Too often, small business owners will have just one product, one service, or one big client. However, what if this one thing disappears? Diversification will allow you to ride the flow of ebbs and tides in business.

5. Poor record keeping and financial controls. You must review your revenue and expense records each month, and understand what they mean! Accounting is the language of business. If you do not know how to speak it, get help from someone who does.

6. Poor cash management. A good rule of thumb is that you can live for one to two years without income when getting started because new businesses are usually slow to get off the ground. If you have created a business plan with a realistic budget, you will already have determined what I have just written!

If your plan shows you earning a high income in the first six months, it may be a good idea to go back and review your budgets.

7. Poor time management. Putting off tasks you do not enjoy will sink your business fast! We get into a business because we love massage therapy. However, have we thought about all the other things that go along with running a business, like bookkeeping, banking, sales, and marketing activities, talking with accountants, attorneys, dealing with customer problems, collecting receivables, and slow cash flow? Getting help with administrative tasks that eat up your time is a sure-fire way to spend time doing what you do bestdeveloping new ideas and revenue for your business.

8. Ineffective marketing. Learn the basics of marketing and track the success or failure of each technique you use. Dump ones that are not working for you in three months time.

9. Ineffective sales techniques. Once you have generated interest in a client, how are you going to convert them into a sale? Understand the basics of selling; take a class, read a book; get some professional help.

10. Entrepreneurial burnout. Owning your own business requires a huge investment of time, money, energy, and emotion. Are you ready to ride the rollercoaster of the highs and lows associated with each of these items? I can guarantee you, it will happen! Motivation and creativity can suffer in the most challenging times, and a pessimistic attitude may prevail.

Be sure to schedule time for yourself. Take time off from your business. It will help you manage the ups and downs of entrepreneurship, and give you fresh perspectives.

As Kathy and I ended our counseling session, she made a list of areas where she needed to grow, and created a task plan. With planning and an objective look at both your personal and your business’ strengths and weaknesses, you can be successful.

© 2006Psychology Articles, 2008. Bonita Richter and Profit Strategies. All rights reserved.

Some Luxury Dog Houses Are Nicer Than My House!

When I think about dog houses I can’t help but feel a little nostalgic. It’s a tug of sentiment for my own childhood I‘m sure. I have positive associations with the dog houses I remember from when I was a kid. I can’t help but think of things like: The Little Rascals, Norman Rockwell paintings, pulling my small red wagon with my pooch dutifully on board (attentive to all as we moved along as if nothing in the world could be more important than what we were doing right then), and, of course, Pluto and Snoopy. Now those two had great adventures around, in, and even on, their dog houses. Theirs weren’t luxury dog houses by any means, and neither was my dog‘s. Theirs were just basic four wall dog houses with a cutout door in the front, a sloped gable roof and maybe a name painted above the entrance. But as I mentioned earlier, there’s quite a difference between these and some of the luxury dog houses out there. Consider this.

Did you know that you can actually get a dog house that has running water, heat and central air? I know! And the exterior design options are endless. You know those home plans books with all the little drawings of home plans? That’s basically what’s available now in luxury dog houses; pretty much anything you want. There are even some with actual furniture like couches and beds in them. The list of amenities goes on and on: indoor and outdoor lighting, stone facades, dining tables (with cutouts for food and water bowls), windows, bath tubs, welcome mats, insulated walls, multiple rooms, and of course, all beautifully landscaped. The super luxury dog houses are huge; big enough for you to go visit your dog at their place! I’m not sure who is buying these things, but it’s nice to know there are dogs out there living the life of luxury.

As for me and my dog, we like living together, most of the time. Don’t get me wrong, I think luxury dog houses are great. They certainly put to shame the four-walled wonder I nailed together last summer. But, I figure what he don’t know won’t hurt him. And besides, I let him in the house quite a bit. I guess my dog sort of has it in the middle. He has lots of space and some  indoor comforts, but he isn’t allowed to sleep on the couch or bedFree Articles, and he certainly doesn’t join the family for dinner at the table!

How to Plan for a Kitchen Remodeling or Renovation Project

It is also where they talk and share ideas about the latest trends and fashions. Consequently, it is not surprising that the kitchen would be on the top of the list of home improvement projects. Having an up to date, modern kitchen, allows people not only to function better with new cabinets and appliances, but also enables them to feel that they are indeed living in modern society.

Kitchen remodeling however can be a very messy and disruptive home improvement project. And the length of the disruption can take as long as a month or more, even when well planned out.

To mitigate the disruption of a kitchen renovation project, planning is absolutely essential. The first item to consider is whether you will do it yourself, or hire a general contractor. Regardless of what route, a homeowner needs to first sketch out some kitchen remodeling ideas to ensure the kitchen design and costs will meet their targeted functional requirements and budget. If a general contractor is to be hired these initial sketches will be helpful in communicating your kitchen remodeling plans and ideas.

During the planning phase, the homeowner should identify the main objectives of the future kitchen. They should research the latest products on the market including: cabinets, countertops, appliances, and flooring. If the kitchen is more than 5 years old, there are a lot of new products to choose from.  For example, Silestone is quickly surpassing Granite and Corian, as the premier countertop surface as it is extremely hard, elegant in appearance, and comes in many colors.  For cabinets, the trend appears to be towards lighter colors as they help the appearance of lightening and enlarging a room. In regards to appliances, the Stainless Steel look appears to be in. And for flooring, vinyl or wood is the trend. Tile looks nice, however, it can be unforgiving in a room where things tend to get dropped. In addition, if there is no radiant heating planned for the floor, tile has the tendency to feel cold on the feet.

It is also important to consider any structural changes to the existing kitchen area. Is a new kitchen island desired, or will walls or doorways need to be moved or installed?

When developing your kitchen remodeling plan, it is important to note that professional kitchen designers like to think of a triangle when starting a new kitchen design. The three points of the triangle include the Sink, Refrigerator, and Stove. Make sure your sketches consider this, as it will ensure a good functional kitchen. Also, consider adequate walking areas and space for an eating area, such as a table or center island, with applicable space included for chairs. I would suggest that the walking areas be wide enough for two people to walk through at the same time.

The sketches should also include dimensions, as these will be needed when meeting with the general contractor or kitchen designer. Finally, consider where the existing outlets and power for the stove are, and assess if additional outlets will be needed or old outlets relocated.

The Importance of Construction Site Inspections

With any type of construction, the one thing that is essential is quality management. This is because of the dangers that are on a construction site. Without the right management, there is going to be a huge problem with controlling workers and the quality of work they are delivering.

This is why construction inspections are so important. This is going to make sure that your quality management is going to get done at the site. Ensuring that everything is running smoothly and according to plan. This is why construction inspection and quality management are going hand in hand.

Construction inspections. What it is all about

Construction inspections, along with site investigation and mapping, are all about doing inspections and making sure that everything is getting done according to the safety rules and regulations. That workers are using all their safety equipment and that they are working in a safe working environment.

These inspections are typically performed by geotechnical engineering firms, and are done before the construction starts, and also during the construction. To make sure that everything is still getting done correctly, and that the structure is built correctly and at high quality. These inspections are also about the construction and the building material of the construction. To ensure that everything is according to the guidelines.

Soil testing is an integral part of all construction inspections and various geotechnical tests conducted throughout the site, help to determine the suitability of the ground soil for construction.

Making quality management better with construction inspections

How do you make quality management better with construction inspections? Doesn’t it show that you don’t trust the workers on the construction site?

Management is all about making sure that everything is going according to plan. But to ensure that safety comes first and that the project is built with the highest quality material, according to the regulations of construction. Low-quality management doesn’t really care about quality or safety. They just want to get the job done as fast as possible.

Why constructions inspections are essential

There are many reasons why construction inspections are essential, but these are the two most important reasons. This is to ensure that the workers are working in a safe environment with all the right safety gear.

And, it is to ensure that the construction is done correctly. With high-quality material that is used with the right type of building method. The quality of the construction project is tested to ensure the safety of the public as well. Without these inspections, there is no way to make sure that the building will be.

What type of inspections does a construction inspector do?

In order to understand better why quality management is all about construction inspection, you need to know the different type of construction inspections are done at a construction site.

The first inspection that they are doing, is to make sure that the construction site is correctly prepared for starting construction. They are looking at the equipment, making sure that it is in good working order, and that the material that they are using is of high quality. 

They are also made sure that during the construction that the workers have the right safety gear on, and that they are using the equipment correctly. That the project and the building are built correctly, with the right specifications and ensure the safety of the public after the project is finished.

There is a connection between construction inspections and quality management. Without the inspections, there is no reason to believe that the construction is getting done correctly, and with the right safety precautions. There are many things that management should make sure about, and the safety of the workers, the quality of the building material and the quality of the building process are just to name a couple of things that are influencing the management. And, with construction inspectionsFind Article, this can be controlled.

Build your dream bathroom with bathroom renovation Halifax

First of all, redesigning your bathroom is a necessary home renovation agenda and is most rewarding when your spirits soar while appreciating the completed result. An effective bathroom renovation Halifax must take care of all your physical and stress relief needs. This involves designing, choosing and installing the correct bathroom fitting Halifax for your home. For all this it is very necessary to trust your instincts and form a clear picture of what you want.

Redesigning your bathroom is a necessary home renovation agenda and is most rewarding when your spirits soar while appreciating the completed result. An effective bathroom renovation Halifax must take care of all your physical and stress relief needs. This involves designing, choosing and installing the correct bathroom fitting Halifax for your home. For all this it is very necessary to trust your instincts and form a clear picture of what you want. It is also prudent to take advice from your local trusted bathroom fitting and plumbing firm.

When considering a range of bathroom fitting Halifax you must try to choose fixtures that are elegant. For example, you can decide on pedestal sink with sleek lines rather than a cabinet sink. Fittings with graceful contours have unmatched inherent beauty and are better choices during bathroom renovation Halifax. Do sit in a bathtub to feel the back or neck support and then choose the one that you are comfortable in rather than choosing a fancy one, since bigger is not necessarily better always. A sixty inch bathtub is comfortable for most people. An extra deep tub is convenient for small spaces and a tub for two will angle at either side with taps in the middle.

Bathroom renovation Halifax involves a large number of areas – designing, tiling, plumbing, plastering, ceiling covering and lighting to name a few. Most firms with a large number of years of experience behind them are able to help you regarding these. Whether you are a domestic or a corporate client, they guarantee quality results meted by professional and reliable workforce. Starting from removal of existing tiling and subsequently repair and so on, these firms provide you a whole range of services. ThusArticle Search, you do not need to worry about coordination or even deal with multiple service providers of bathroom fitting Halifax.

For the tiling aspect of bathroom fitting Halifax do select durable flooring like marble and ceramic tiles. These are excellent choices as they are hardy and water resistant. Below floor heating coils will keep these tiles warm. Other good choices include hardwood floors that have been well sealed. They provide natural warmth and are better than other hard cold bathroom floors. During bathroom renovation Halifax remember that a stylish mirror hung in the right place over a wash basin makes a huge difference to the ambience. It can be complemented with makeup mirrors and shaving mirrors with correct lighting rather than having full wall mirrors. Recessing storage cupboards into walls saves floor space and provides maximum vertical storage. It will be useful to remember that the door would need proper shield in case you do not have a separate shower area.

The firms offering bathroom renovation Halifax services give you suggestions based on your needs even if you are unsure of the design that will suit you best. These bathroom fitting Halifax companies are flexible regarding time and have a range of customised units for creating storage space in a unique fashion. You only need to share with them your wishes and fancies. Then take a step back and relax and watch these professionals make your dream come true.

Some Factors To Consider Before Chipping In For Domestic Cleaning Service Providers


Home cleaning can at times seem as a daunting chore which is not only time consuming but also very monotonous and exhausting. In such a scenario, it is wise to chip in for the expert domestic cleaning services, which have earned a pretty good reputation in this niche house cleaning service segment by offering exceptional services. This is very resourceful especially for those who are very busy in their professional life and can rarely manage to devote weekends to cleaning home. This is exactly where House cleaning & ironing service provider in UK chips in. they can take care of all your house cleaning needs without burning holes in your pocket. The best place to look for pertaining and affordable domestic cleaning services is of course the World Wide Web. With a bit of intricate research on the World Wide Web, you can lay your hands on service providers who have grossed an unbeatable reputation in this specific niche industry segment. Not only services relevant to cleaning, you can also search for cleaning lady and ironing services. It all depends on your unique penchants and what are your prolific requirements. When you are searching for proficient domestic cleaning service providers, the sheer assortment of choices that the internet will put forth will undeniably sweep you off your feet. This calls for consideration of some imperative factors, before chipping in for their services. Make certain that they have apt insurance for the things that they accidentally destroy at your home and also for their employees who might misfortunately get injured while at work. This will make certain that the domestic cleaning firm is utterly professional and hence trust worthy. This will also leave you aside from the complicated procedures of insurance. Make certain that the employees are only employed after a precise and exorbitant background check. This will show that they are reliable. You should also double check that the cleaning instruments they make use of are state of the art contrivances and the cleaning ingredients and chemicals they bring into play are adhering to safety standards and do not pose risk towards the health of your children and pets. It is also wise to check if they are transparent, when it comes to the pricing structure of their services. This encompasses reading the fine print and asking if they have any hidden costs and fees, which you do not know about. Be clear on what aspects of cleaning would they cover and what they will leave out. Windows, floors and ceilings are generally covered by these domestic cleaning service providers. Do remember to research the web for the market repute of the specific firm and the years of experience backing their claim. If the particular home cleaning service provider satisfies all the aforesaid condition and prerequisites, you should definitely select them for your requirements. Apart from these conditions, you should also make certain that the services are well inside your budget and that they offer guaranteed peace of mind by giving the gleam lacking building a fresh spark.

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Why it Makes Sense to Hire a General Contractor


Need some work done in your home? If so, don’t be tempted to do the job
yourself. Hire a reliable general contractor. You should hire a general
contractor if the job will take more than a week to complete, if it
requires several contractors to complete, or if it requires a few
permits. You should also consider hiring a contractor if you are not a
do-it-yourselfer or if you have a job that is expensive,
skills-specific, and so complex that you need the help of a
professional. Many homeowners do not realize that the average kitchen
remodel takes about 5 weeks to complete. Not to mention that in order to
remodel your kitchen, you will likely need a plumber, electrician,
cabinet and countertop contractor, flooring contractor, painter, and
someone who can install your appliances. That’s a lot of people.
Fortunately, you can hire a general contractor to take care of
everything. Here are the top reasons why homeowners should hire general

They are Licensed

General contractors will protect your interests. They should be licensed
to perform the work that they are hired to do in your state. That
license means that they have demonstrated sufficient knowledge and
experience to work in this field. This will give you peace of mind when
you hire a contractor to work on your biggest investment: your home. Why
would you hire someone who does not know what he is doing?

They Will Take Care of Everything for You

Most people don’t know that work being done on a house requires a
building permit from their city. If you’re doing any type of major job
like adding a room, you’ll need to show your permits to the city
government and the work will have to be approved. If you hire a general
contractor, he will take care of all your paperwork. Everything will be
done for you. The contractor you hire will also schedule the
subcontractors and make sure each job goes smoothly. He will keep track
of the receipts, obtain the materials, and pay the subcontractors when
the job is finished. Remember that the job is not finished until you are
satisfied. Your contractor will also provide you with a contract that
includes the work that will be done, what steps will be taken to
complete the work, what materials will be used, and what the costs will

Save You Money on Supplies

You might be able to save some cash on the materials needed for your
home improvement projects. Most stores selling them offer discounts to
contractors who shop with them regularly, so you’ll end up saving money.
You can also ask your contractor for receipts for the supplies that are
purchased. That way, you know how much they cost.

An Expert in the Industry

General contractors know all the ins and outs when it comes to
remodeling and building. They know what it takes to get the job done
right the first time. General contractors are up-to-date on the current
codes and they will make sure your house passes inspection. Good general
contractors will help you save money, time, and aggravation, so keep
that in mind if you own a home.

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Are There Still Any Small Business Opportunities Available?

In today’s business world what are good small business opportunities? The answer is new businesses that can provide products or services to a sizable market of customers who want to buy. One way to move forward is to get involved in a marketplace that is already established and offer products or services in that market in a unique way so that customers want to start buying from you.

Another alternative is to identify unusual small business opportunities in smaller niche markets. These smaller markets are ones suited to the resources of a small business, do not compete with larger businesses and are big enough to make a profit.

The key to success is that your products or services must connect with your target audience. The problem often faced by new entrepreneurs when getting involved in small business opportunities is that they target a market that is too broad or a niche market that is already heavily exploited. .

The Search For Small Business Opportunities.

A lot of successful small home based business opportunities begin with an entrepreneur’s unique area of expertise. They look at what they are good at, things that they enjoy and use their skills and resources to transform an idea into a real business.

In today’s economy, the best new business to start is an online business, as the start-up costs are costs considerably lower than any physical offline business costs.The internet is the most effective marketing tool in today’s digital world and all new small business opportunities need to have some sort of online presence to remain competitive. The internet allows you to easily expand your business beyond the confines of your physical location.

Starting A Small Business Opportunity.

There are many websites online that help people get started with small business opportunities. The internet is a worldwide marketplace where people are buying and selling online constantly. There are physical products bought online that get delivered to the customer’s door and digital products which the customer can download to their computer right after purchase and start using immediately.

There is a boom in small business opportunities within the digital products and services sector. Just think of all the online filmFree Reprint Articles, music and information services that are available online. People will pay for information products that they can download online and there may well be a market out there who will pay for your current skills and expertise.

How to choose when you are looking for bathroom remodel in Austin

Every member of the home uses the bathroom everyday and therefore, it needs to be comfortable and pleasing with regard to its planning and fixtures. In addition to meeting the day to day convenience of the family, the way your bathroom is maintained can impress the guests, visitors and also the potential buyers if you are going to sell your property at some point. Therefore, bathroom remodel becomes a very important aspect of home improvement projects. However, it is important that you work on the bathroom remodel project elaborately with a good eye to the minute details so that it comes out successful.

People embark upon bathroom remodel project during several occasions. Often, the fixtures in the bathroom get outdated or do not sufficiently meet the needs of the family members. You might come across some innovative bathroom remodel concepts and therefore would like to give vent to those ideas through a bathroom remodel project. If you are looking forward to sell your property and might think of bathroom remodeling as a way to boost up the property value by impressing the buyers. At times, you might think of tub to shower conversion or might replace a shower and install a bath tub. Under all such circumstances, you might need to take up a bathroom remodel project.

Whatever be the reason for your bathroom remodel project in Austin, there are a few things you should bear in mind so that the task comes out successful meeting the best of your aspirations. Bathroom remodel is a highly tricky kind of project and therefore you need to get into it with a lot of care, enough planning and forethought. Since a sizeable budget is to be spent on bathroom remodel, it will only amount to wasting your hard earned money if you have not properly given a shape to your remodel project by considering several aspects. Also, once done, several things cannot be undone, therefore, there is no point in hurrying with a poor idea and then lament that it has misfired and has not come out properly. Therefore, plan well before you get into doing something with your bathroom remodeling project.

Considering the complex nature of the bathroom remodeling project, it makes a lot of sense to entrust your bathroom remodel to an accomplished agency that can meet your precise needs in a highly economicalFeature Articles, time bound and also a professional way. Contact a few agencies and then ask them to show some of the projects they have accomplished. This would give you an idea of their capabilities. Also ask for a quote mentioning the needs you have in front of you. Considering a handful of proposals and companies can let you proceed with your bathroom remodeling project in a meticulous manner. Ask the company how much time they shall take to complete the project and the exact budget that the task is likely to involve. Look into all possibilities and ask them some potential solutions they can suggest in line with your typical needs. This shall help you accomplish the bathroom remodel with a high amount of professionalism.