Make Time for Your Life

By Craig So busy. So hurried. You have so much work to do that you feel like you never rest. When do you fit your life in? Do you even remember your personal life? Or has it become a blur of commuting, work, and errands. You need to make time for you. Take Time For Yourself When […]

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Sharing Economy 2.0: Sharing a Peek at the Next Generation

By Kelly Spors

The term “sharing economy” entered the American lexicon just a few years ago when a few quirky-named startups began popping up. All were founded on the concept that people could use online tools to borrow or rent things from each other.

Over the past few years, however, this sharing economy has exploded in ways that seemed unimaginable. Concepts that were once farfetched are now among the hottest companies on the block. The $10 billion valuation of “couchsurfing” platform Airbnb, for instance, means it’s now worth more than Hyatt Hotels, which had about 75,000 employees and nearly 500 hotels as …read more

Forget Business Books: Why Reading Fiction Is Better for Your Business

By Rohit Bhargava

If you had a bucket list for this summer, chances are, reading a book for pleasure might have been on it.

Whether you managed to check that aspiration off the list or not, it reveals a bias that many of us have when it comes to thinking about books, especially fiction: They’re great reality diversions we can leave behind once we get back to “real work.”

The truth is, reading fiction can be as valuable to your business as reading a business book. For busy entrepreneurs, taking the time to sit down with a great book, though, can certainly seem like an …read more

The Real Reason You Feel Overwhelmed

By kelly This is a guest post by Jim Woods. Jim is a status-quo defying writer and coach who helps others get unstuck so they can live a better story. You can connect with him on Twitter. His next ebook, with Erik Fisher,is now available. Hit The Mark will help you improve your focus, boost your energy, […]

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The Right Time To Fire Yourself and Building B2B Relationships

By JJ Ramberg

Small business consultant Barry Moltz and Christiane Lemieux, the executive creative director at, answer viewer questions about the right time to fire yourself from your own company and how to access the decision makers when trying to build B2B relationships.

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Top 10 Business Tips From This Week’s OPEN Forum

By Anthonia Akitunde

1. Show why your topic is important. A great story can boost a business or product into the stratosphere, but storytelling can just as easily bring you crashing to the ground if it’s not compelling to an audience, writes OPEN Forum contributor Mike Michalowicz. Great storytelling in public speaking does more than stating facts; it should compel the audience to act after hearing it. (From “5 Ways Storytelling Can Kill Your Message,” by Mike Michalowicz)

2. Follow the cues your body sends. Pushing through fatigue isn’t always the best idea: It can lead to you submitting sloppy …read more

Here’s How Small Businesses Can Provide Stellar Customer Support

By Julie Bawden Davis

As a small-business owner, you likely went into business to provide customers with a stellar product or service. Somewhere along the line you realized you also had to provide customer support, too—but didn’t know where to start. This topic was broached recently when OPEN Forum community member T.S. Praveen Kumar, CEO and founder of Animonks Animation Pvt. Ltd., asked:

“How do you guys handle customer support for your startups/companies? You may get a lot of email support tickets, calls from clients and on-site live chat support—how are you handling it? Even if you want to hire a …read more

7 Things Stopping You From Pursuing Your Impossible Dreams

By Craig You have dreams inside you. BIG things that you want to accomplish. Yet, you have never started many of them. Your dreams remain thoughts in your head. You have convinced yourself that they are impossible. Or you don’t know where to start. Or you don’t have time. What’s stopping you from pursuing your dreams? In Pursuit […]

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What Do the Fast-Food Wage Protests Mean for Small Business?

By Kelly Spors

Fast-food workers in 150 cities across the United States protested on Thursday, demanding that their employers pay them at least $15 per hour—a campaign called Fight for 15 being led by the Service Employees International Union.

The protests even led to many arrests in Detroit, Pittsburgh and New York.

The call for higher wages in the fast-food industry echoes the debates happening in many cities and states over the minimum wage. Seattle and several other local and state governments have enacted new, much higher minimum wages this year; labor activists and low-wage workers say paying all workers …read more

How to Make NFL Season a Win-Win for the Workplace

By Kelly Spors

NFL season has arrived, with the Green Bay Packers going against the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday night. For football fans, the season’s start is a time of great joy and excitement. For business owners and managers? Maybe not so much.

Football season inevitably means football-loving employees will be in constant distraction mode—whether checking game scores and pregame analysis on their work computers, trading fantasy football players or making tailgating plans for the weekend. How can you turn football season into a win-win for the office rather than a time suck and productivity loss?

Embrace the season. If you can’t beat …read more