March 2009

SCL Biz Celebrates Two Years of Serving Sonoma County Business

With more than 500 posts  informing Sonoma County of business events, great websites for small businesses, and the best in free Library materials for starting, growing, and managing your own business, SCL Biz started on March 31, 2006.

Thank you to all of you who have offered suggestions and support – may your business prosper.

How to Generate Business or Save $ with the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program (EIP)

Find out the range of opportunities and benefits the EIP project will offer to local businesses at  The Energy Independence Workshop event  hosted by the Sonoma County Economic Development Board, County of Sonoma General Services, North Coast Builders Exchange, Redwood Empire Remodelers Association, Pacific Gas & Electric, and the Sonoma County Water Agency.

  • Learn how the Sonoma County Energy Independence Project (EIP) can assist your business in financing resource efficiency projects for commercial and residential properties.
  • Learn what types of resource efficiency projects are eligible under the Sonoma County Energy Independence Project.

April 9, 2009 • 7:00 – 9:00am
Doubletree Hotel, One Doubletree Drive, Rohnert Park

Information & Reservations [Last day to register is April 6]

Five Legal Issues Every Business Needs to Know – SCORE Workshop

“With this workshop you will learn about the five major legal issues facing every business and how to address them. You will evaluate your business to identify any legal issues that need to be addressed, and will leave with a plan to address each one of them. This workshop is taught by business attorney Roy Johnston, who encourages you to bring your toughest legal questions with you to the workshop.”

April 4, 2009 • 9:00am – Noon
SRJC, Emeritus Hall on Elliott Avenue, Room 1522

Information and registration

Nominate an Outstanding Woman in Business

The North Bay Business Journal is seeking nominations to “honor outstanding women in the North Bay for their success and contributions to the business community as leaders, innovators and visionaries from among the following industries: Banking & Finance, Construction, Employment, Health Care, Hospitality & Tourism, Insurance, Nonprofits, Real Estate, Technology, Wine, and Other Professional.”

Plan on attending the Leaders -Innovators -Visionaries Women in Business 2009 Awards Dinner Gala in June.

Nomination deadline is April 17!

Information and Nomination Form

A Sense of Urgency

A Sense of Urgency by Kotter

“Kotter identifies the single biggest factor to successful change, which also happens to be his number-one principle: creating a true sense of urgency. In a way that will resonate with those charged with carrying out new corporate strategies or implementing transformation, he details one streamlined strategy: appeal to the head and the heart,with four supporting tactics: bring the outside reality in, behave with true urgency every day, selectively look for upside possibilities in crises, and effectively confront what he calls the no-no’s. Charts and chapter summaries help connect theory to the practical question: How do we move people to act? An easy, quick read that provides good elucidation of what makes change work.”Booklist, August 2008

A Sense of Urgency by John P. Kotter, [Harvard Business Press, 2008]

Managers can find more ideas in the SCL Biz Guide to Managing a Business.

How to Make Money with a Home Based Typing/Word Processing Business – SRJC Workshop

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

If you can type, you can make money at home using your typewriter, word processor, or computer. Discover the secrets to making profits in the typing/word processing business, including how and where to find clients; 50+ ways to advertise/market your services; effective home office equipment choices; and FREE national networking information. There really is a need for your services, so why not have the freedom to be your own boss, set your own hours, and have the opportunity to make more money than you ever did before by attending this workshop? Additional reference material will be offered in class.” Presented by LeeAnne Krusemark.

March 26, 2009 • 7-9:30pm
1520 Emeritus Hall, Santa Rosa Campus

Information & Reservations

Get a Handle on Your Workplace Technology Policies

Smart Policies for Workplace Technologies by GuerinSmart Policies for Workplace Technologies: Email, Blogs, Cell Phones & More, by Lisa Guerin [Nolo Press, 2009]

“Keep your workplace safe — create a sensible technology policy with this all-in-one-guide.

Sixty-eight percent of employees in the U.S. have sent emails that exposed their company to risk, and more than 229 million records have been taken from stolen business laptops or hacked business websites since 2005. It is no wonder, then, that technology dangers consistently rank number one on the list of employers’ concerns.

Every new device that promises to make our lives easier brings with it the risk of misuse — whether accidental or intentional. That’s why it’s so important that any business that employs both people and computers create a safe and sensible policy for technologies in the workplace.

Smart Policies for Workplace Technologies provides the tools employers need to assess your current policies’ effectiveness, along with information on how to draft or revise, then distribute and enforce your new customized policies.

Learn how to protect your business with a policy that addresses:

  • Trade secret protection
  • Customer, employer and employee privacy
  • Communicating with employees regarding privacy policy
  • Managing electronic documents and tools
  • Limiting liability for employee misconduct
  • Conserving company resources”

Bookmark This Website!

The Stanford University’s Entrepreneurship Corner has hundreds of short videos and podcasts on every aspect of business, featuring leaders in all fields. Search by speaker or topic, or you can browse the videos, podcasts, and a list of all of the speakers.

And it’s all free.

Stanford University’s Entrepreneurship Corner

Online Marketing – SRJC Workshop

“Are you new to operating on the Internet or looking for ways to improve traffic to your website? This basic e-marketing class will teach you how to use your website as a marketing tool. Topics include:

  •  how to create high impact, high response websites
  • how to increase popularity and average viewing time
  • how to work with the Internet as a whole in your marketing plan
  • how to achieve higher rankings in search engines
  • how to do online advertising with AdWords and Pay-per-Click
  • how to encourage viewers to return
  •  how to determine how well your website strategy is working”

Presented by Cathy Balach.

March 21, 2009 • 9:00am – 1:00pm
2702 Maggini Hall, Santa Rosa Campus

Information & Reservations

Profit Mastery

The Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center is offering a new workshop for business owners, key managers, entrepreneurs, business advisers and others whose decisions have an impact on their company’s financial performance. Profit Mastery is designed to enhance the financial management skills of all business people. Leave this seminar with understanding of:

  • The entrepreneur, management styles, common business problems and tax planning
  • Accounting basics, understanding financial position, tools for active control and financial cause and effect
  • Effective pricing decisions, operating leverage and cost behavior patterns

Registration includes the 200+ page workbook, additional materials, continental breakfast, and buffet lunch.

March 31, 2009  • 8am – 5pm
Pepperbelly’s, 49 Texas Street, Fairfield

Information and Reservations

Monday Morning Mentoring

Monday Morning Mentoring by Cottrell

David Cottrell, president and CEO of CornerStone Leadership Institute, is an internationally known leadership consultant, educator, and speaker. His business experience includes senior management positions with Xerox and FedEx. He also led the successful turnaround of a Chapter 11 company before founding CornerStone. David’s more than twenty-five years of professional experience are reflected in twenty-one highly acclaimed books and his reputation as a premier public speaker. David has been a featured expert on public television and has presented his leadership message to over 125,000 managers. Everyone who wants a fulfilling career needs a mentor — someone who has seen it all before, someone who can share hard-won experiences and teach valuable lessons and we find that in his book, Monday Morning Mentoring: Ten Lessons to Guide You Up the Ladder [Collins, 2006].

Visit the SCL Biz Guide to Managing a Business for additional resources.

Looking For New Markets?

The United States is a diverse population and anyone in business should try to learn more about the buying power of various groups. Published by Selig Center for Economic Growth, Terry College of Business at The University of Georgia, The Multicultural Economy 2008 report, by Jeffrey M.Humphrey, outlines the buying power of Native Americans, Asian, Hispanic, and Black Americans in the US, backed up by statistical data from 1990-2008 along with projections for 2009-2013.

For instance, according to the report, Asians spend more on food, housing, major appliances, telecom services, education, and personal insurance – you’ll find the same info for each group. There are also many tables with stats for topics such as U.S. Buying Power Statistics by Race, Total Buying Power by Place of Residence, The Nation’s Largest Consumer Markets in 2008 (California tops the list), The Nation’s Fast-Growing Consumer Markets in 1990-2008, and buying power statistics are available for all fifty states.

Multicultural Economy 2008

The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Writing Business Plans and Proposals

Entrepreneur’s Guide to Writing Business Plans and Proposals, by Chambers

The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Writing Business Plans and Proposals, by K. Dennis Chambers [Praeger Publications, 2007] “Chambers writes with the insightful clarity that he espouses and provides many practical examples of plans and letters, as well as exercises, templates, and cases. His advice provides a useful compendium and is somewhat an Elements of Style (the classic on good writing by William Strunk Jr., 4th ed., 1999) for business plan and proposal writers.” Choice Reviews 2008.

More on business planning and business proposal writing

Retire – And Start Your Own Business: 5 Steps to Success

Retire - And Start Your Own Business by Sargent “The only book that helps entrepreneurial retirees figure out how to get that dream business up and running! Over 5.5 million people are retired and self-employed. Factor in the coming wave of retiring baby boomers, and that number will leap dramatically. According the recent surveys, nearly 70 percent of older folks plan to keep working after retirement. Packed with practical information and hands-on tools, it will show readers how to:

  • define success for themselves
  •  understand what they want from retirement
  •  take stock of their skills and experience
  • evaluate time and money restraints
  • generate business ideas
  • perform five “reality checks” on the best idea
  • prepare to launch a business
  • understand the legal, financial and tax matters
  • find health insurance
  • Plus: there are more than 80 exercises that help retirees figure out exactly what they want from their businesses and their lives. The CD-ROM also provides six Excel spreadsheets, plus additional worksheets and lessons not included in the book. “

Retire- And Start Your Own Business: 5 Steps to Success, by Dennis J. and Martha S. Sargent [Nolo, 2008].

Latinos in the Workplace Conference

Organized by the Northern California Engineering Contractors Association, this conference is for all business owners who employ Latinos, or would like to expand the diversity of their workforce.  Speakers will include Ernesto Olivares, Santa Rosa City Council, Ben Stone, Sonoma County Economic Development Board Director, Dr. Carl Wong, Sonoma County Office of Education Superintendent, Michael Saqui, The Saqui Law Group, Lupe Sandocal of Bilingual Safety Solutions, and Supervisor Efren Carrillo.

Topics will focus on employee safety, employer and employee rights and responsibilities, how to comply with current immigration law, how to retain good employees, and more.

March 12, 2009 • 8am – Noon
Hilton Sonoma Wine Country, 3555 Round Barn Boulevard, Santa Rosa

Information & Reservations

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