June 2008

Import/Export 101

When you think importing and exporting, do you assume it’s just for big business? Actually, 96% of the international import/export market is done by small businesses. SCL Biz wants to help you get started expanding into the global marketplace.

Building an Import Export Business by Weiss Building an Import/Export Business, by Kenneth Weiss [Wiley, 2007] “shows you how to start your own import/export business, from researching a raw idea to a successful launch to ongoing, profitable business operations. Complete with real-life examples from importers and exporters, it helps you every step of the way, from targeting a market and preparing a business plan to dealing with foreign currencies, shipping procedures, customs requirements, and more. It also shares tips to help you take advantage of NAFTA and other trade pacts, plus online resources to help you start and grow your business.”
Import/Export for Dummies by Capela Import/Export For Dummies, by John K. Capela, Wiley 2008. “The United States imports $1.2 trillion and exports $772 billion in goods on an annual basis. Import/Export For Dummies provides entrepreneurs and small- to medium-size businesses with the critical information they need to begin exporting their products around the world and importing goods to sell in America. This practical guide covers the ins and outs of developing or expanding operations to capture a share of this growing market, with details on the top ten countries with which America trades, from Canada to Germany to China.”
Start Your Own Import/Export Business Start Your Own Import/Export Business, by Jennifer Dorsey, Entrepreneur Press, 2007. “Importing and exporting are trillion-dollar industries-but that doesn’t mean they’re just for big business. In fact, small businesses make up about 96 percent of this field. Get your share of an ever-expanding economy with the essential advice in this top-selling guide.As a successful import/export agent, you can net a healthy six-figure income by matching buyers and sellers from around the globe, right from your own home. This book is loaded with valuable insights and practical advice for tapping into lucrative global markets. It covers every aspect of the startup process, including:

  • How to collect money from overseas transactions
  • Using the internet to simplify your transactions
  • How the government can help you find products and customers
  • Essential trade law information to keep your business in compliance
  • How to choose a customs broker
  • Proven methods for finding contacts in the United States and abroad

Tricks of the trade from successful importers and exporters and hundreds of valuable resources help you become a player in the lucrative world of international exchange.”

Successfully Planning & Starting the One-Person Business – SRJC Workshop

Co-sponsored by the Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center.

“Have you been moved out of a career through layoffs or mergers? Longing to be your own boss and follow your dream? Times have changed, and one-person businesses are a permanent part of our new economy. Are you ready to become ‘your business’ and join this fast growing group of entrepreneurs? Let’s enjoy discussing:

  • Learning from others’ successes (books/tapes, workshops, Internet, etc.)
  • Doing your homework/research (markets/competition)
  • Self-assessment (skills, expertise, business idea)
  • Lifestyle changes (working alone, no paycheck, family support, freedom)
  • Legal form of business, licenses, zoning, ID, taxes, write-offs, contracts, etc.
  • Business plan, seed money, working capital, budgets
  • Market research, and target markets
  • Sales/Marketing, cards, Web pages, brochures, networking
  • Setting up shop (supplies, equipment, accounting, etc.)
  • Seven reasons businesses could fail
  • Personal/Professional well-being (support, inspiration, continued learning, time out)”
    Presented by Danni Burton.

June 28, 2008 • 9:30am – 4:30pm
SRJC Campus, 2701 Maggini Hall, Santa Rosa

Information & Reservations

Buying & Selling a Business

Buying and Selling a Business by Nottonson” The working relationship with the person opposite you at the negotiating table during a sale can determine your success or failure. Experienced attorney Ira Nottonson covers both sides of the table, presenting the buyer’s and the seller’s perspectives, as well as critical steps in the sale process, including presentation, negotiation and documentations. Learn how to gain the upper hand, minimize financial risk and come out a winner, no matter on which side of the table you’re sitting,” with Buying and Selling a Business, by Ira Nottonson, Attorney at Law [Entrepreneur Press, 2008]. Includes a CD-ROM with articles on everything from “Valuing a Business as a Buyer: Be Careful!” to “The Frightening Aspect of Being Sued.”

More books on buying and selling a business

Nominations for the 2008 Leaders of the North Bay Award

The North Bay Leadership Council is calling for nominations to “recognize leaders within businesses, nonprofits, and organizations who contribute to improving the quality of life and prosperity of the North Bay.”

Nomination Categories:

  1. Caught in the Act of Leadership: Individual excellence in leadership
  2. We’re All in this Together: Community building
  3. Paint the Community Green: Environmental stewardship
  4. The ‘Light Bulb’ Went On: Innovative/entrepreneurial spirit
  5. Empowering the Latino Community: Leadership within the Latino community

Nominations are due by July 11, 2008.

Information and Nomination Form [Click on the May 30, 2008 link]

Celebrating Women in Business Gala

Regular readers of SCL Biz may remember our call for your nominations for the North Bay Journal‘s Women in Business awards – the results are in and the 2008 Awards Dinner Gala is scheduled. The Keynote Speaker is Jan Yanehiro, execultive Producer of “Pacific Fusion TV:, syndicated in the US, Europe, and Asia.

Join the NBJ in honoring “outstanding women in the North Bay for their success and contributions to the business community as leaders, innovators and visionaries.”

June 26, 2008 • 5:30 – 9:00pm
Sheraton Sonoma County, 745 Baywood Drive, Petaluma

Information & Reservations

How to Set Up and Market Your Own Seminar – SRJC Workshop

This is a Santa Rosa Junior College Community Education short course, co-sponsored by the Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center: “Want to earn a healthy income selling your know-how to others? In four hours you will learn the essential ingredients of seminar success: how to give your first seminar with no financial risk; why topic definition and the right title are crucial to success; which key words most titles should include; what promotional strategies work; why program length is more important than cost; what four key questions seminar-givers must be able to answer about sponsorship or selection. A free 24-page workbook includes an organizational calendar, a current bibliography, two sample news releases, and a model evaluation form, plus guide sheets about publicity, mailing lists, locations, flyer/brochure preparation, budget, content and organization, and how to get scheduled at colleges and universities.”

June 25, 2008 • 6:00 – 10:00pm
2703 Maggini Hall, SRJC Campus

Information & Reservations

2008 Business Technology Boot Camp Reminder – June 24

The Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center asked SCL Biz to remind you that they are holding a one day training event with six workshops, intended for non-technical small business owners of all skill levels, covering all aspects of your business. The exceptionally low registration fee includes a professional bound course book covering all six sessions, access to online resources and further training materials, breakfast, lunch and beverages, and an opportunity to network with your small business peers.

June 24, 2008 • 8:00am – 5:00pm
Sonoma Mountain Village Event Center, 1100 Valley House Drive, Rohnert Park

Information & Reservations

Help for Local Businesses Hurt by Salmon Season Closure

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest loans to salmon fisherman and small businesses dependent on the catching or sale of salmon, such as gear and fuel suppliers, docks, boatyards, processors, wholesalers, shippers, and retailers. The deadline to apply is March 3, 2009.

For more information, call 1-800-659-2955 or go to Economic Injury Loans.

Downtown Santa Rosa Green Business Fair

The City of Santa Rosa is hosting the Downtown Santa Rosa Green Business Fair that is free to all downtown business owners and employees.

  • Learn about cost-saving measures, rebates, and incentives
  • Sign up for free energy and water audits
  • Find out how to reduce your trash and utility bills
  • Learn how to become a certified green business
  • Free Informational seminars
  • Refreshments provided
  • Complimentary eco-friendly gift pack

June 24, 2008 • 7:30 – 11:30am
North Coast Bank Lobby, 50 Santa Rosa Ave, Downtown Santa Rosa

Information & To Sign Up [Space is limited]

Organize Your Office: From Chaos to Control – SRJC Workshop

“Discover creative ways to organize and capture all your paper by turning piles into files! Streamline your emails so that you control your inbox. Create foolproof paperflow systems and design personalized and efficient filing systems. Learn the truth about archiving financial documents. Gain control of your time with the 30 second rule and specialized tickler files. From the home office to the corporate office, you’ll leave with strategies to overcome the information overwhelm of today.” Presented by Christine Palen.

June 23, 2008 • 6:30pm – 9:30pm
1597 Emeritus Hall, Santa Rosa campus

Information and registration

Bedtime Reading for Entrepreneurs

One Minute Entrepreneur by Blanchard A review in the June 2008 issue of Entrepreneur Press describes The One Minute Entrepreneur: The Secret to Creating and Sustaining a Successful Business, by Ken Blanchard and Don Hutson, with Ethan Willis [Currency Press, 2008]:

“..legendary management writer Ken Blanchard, speaker Don Hutosn and entrepreneur Ethan wills use a fable format to describe how to create a business with a firm foundation and then build on it. Short chapters and folksy aphorisms describe the progress of the entrepreneurial protagonist as he grapples with realistic obstacles and ambitions.”

Check the SCL Biz Guide to Managing a Business for more great books.

How to Successfully Comply with Cal/OSHA Today – SRJC Workshop

“Are you prepared for Cal/OSHA to visit your business? This power-packed workshop will assist you in meeting your Cal/OSHA mandated safety/health compliance responsibilities. You’ll learn how to eliminate potential hazards, how to properly investigate workplace injury/illness incidents, how to avoid safety violations, how to meet recordkeeping responsibilities and much more. At the end of the day you’ll be better prepared to minimize your potential liability and maintain a safer, more productive workplace for you and your employees.” Presented by Wally Pearce.

June 20, 2008 • 8:30am – 5:00pm
SRJC Campus, 2704 Maggini Hall, Santa Rosa

Information & Reservations

Where Our Tax Dollars Are Going

From the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, this website is interesting to everyone who pays taxes and can also be used to see if companies in your industry are getting government contracts and that can help identify your own business opportunities.

“Have you ever wanted to find more information on government spending? Have you ever wondered where federal contracting dollars and grant awards go? Or perhaps you would just like to know, as a citizen, what the government is really doing with your money. The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (Transparency Act) requires a single searchable website, accessible by the public for free that includes for each Federal award:

1. The name of the entity receiving the award;
2. The amount of the award;
3. Information on the award including transaction type, funding agency, etc;
4. The location of the entity receiving the award;
5. A unique identifier of the entity receiving the award.”


Recovery or Recession: What’s Ahead for Sonoma County

Hosted by the Sonoma County Economic Development Board, Dr. Steve Cochrane, Senior Managing Director of Moody’s Economy.com, provides his annual outlook and the economic indicators to watch in the U.S. and global markets. Join local business leaders for breakfast to hear his analysis of Sonoma County’s business sectors.

Dr. Cochrane provides his annual outlook for the local economy, analyzing the main business sectors in Sonoma County: Agriculture, Food and Wine, Technology-Producing Industries, Creative Professional Services, Construction and Green Services, Retail Trade, Health and Wellness, Wholesale Trade, Wealth Management, and Tourism.

June 20, 2008 • 7 – 9am
Hyatt Vineyard Creek Hotel, 170 Railroad Street, Santa Rosa

Information & Reservations

You Could Be the 2008 Entrepreneur of the Year

Entrepreneur Magazine and The UPS Store are sponsoring the 2008 Entrepreneur of the Year Award. The contest this year includes two categories: Entrepreneur of the Year and Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year. Lots of great prizes for both winners, but hurry – last day to enter is June 30!

Entrepreneur of the Year Contest Information

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