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Articles: Being your own boss

Composing knockout sales letters
A sales letter is a low-cost selling tool; in fact, an email version is one of the most cost-effective ways to reach customers. A good letter by itself may be enough to get the message across. However, in most cases, sales letters are best used...

Move up by moving sideways first
Given the proportion of your time that you spend working, you probably want your job to be an interesting part of your life. It used to be that to keep things interesting you needed to keep getting promoted. In today’s lean and flattened workplaces, frequ

Is too much innovation a bad thing?
Companies often try to freshen their existing products with too much innovation; the 37th button on the remote. But their mistake is your opportunity. Automakers, for example, are trying hard to replace the time-tested, simple, and easy-to-use starter key

How to manage your online reputation
Worried about your company getting flogged in the blogosphere? It happens — there have been some chilling examples of companies taking a serious reputation-beating. Some tactics for saving (and improving) and your company’s online reputation...

A Customer-Driven Redesign
At GE Commercial Finance, a 2006 study showed that poor use of office space was actually hindering the company’s relationship with customers. Clients were unhappy with how much time loan processing required, so the financial conglomerate launched a study

How to build a better office
According to a survey, half of all employees say they would work an extra hour per day if they had a better workplace. So why do so many companies maintain dark, cramped, ugly, or poorly designed offices?

Stop wasting valuable time
Most leadership teams spend just three hours per month making strategic decisions. That translates into less than a week per year. Worse, many teams fritter away those precious hours on unfocused, inconclusive discussion...

Understanding allowable business expenses
It's crucial for business owners to understand exactly what expenses can be deducted from total revenues and reported to shareholders, employees and taxing authorities. Some expenses are obvious: wages, salaries, and benefits you pay employees...

The weird rules of creativity
Hire people you don't like, then promote them when they defy you. Wholeheartedly commit to risky projects. Get your happiest workers arguing. And keep your innovators away from customers. Recipes for disaster?

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