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The SBC Small Business Newsletter

presented by the Peak Small Business Center



November 9, 2002

Table of Contents



Quote of the Week


Featured Resource -


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Quote of the Week

Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.

--Robert Louis Stevenson



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Featured Resource

Need to translate something from one language to another just to get a feel for a phrase or what is being said on a webpage? offers you a very quick and easy way to do translations. You wouldn't want to use this tool to translate a full webpage, but it can be very useful under the right circumstances. It can also be quite funny and entertaining at times when trying to translate idioms and proper names!

Staff Article

by: Cary Christian

We've been examining 15 ways small businesses get into trouble over the past three weeks. This week, we're looking at the flipside. stellar small businesses can be identified as NOT making the 15 mistakes we discussed, but rehashing those 15 mistakes in reverse will not define them. We're going to look at several common variables stellar small businesses exhibit that are more intangible, yet seem to make all the difference between success and failure.

You see, while making those 15 mistakes can kill a business, not making them does not guarantee success. It only means the business is not likely to kill itself. For the business to grow and become more and more profitable, more is required.

The business must know the SCORE, how to SCORE, and when to SCORE.

S - Stellar small businesses have a readily identifiable source of STRENGTH, and the ability to SELECTIVELY apply that strength with SKILL.

The strength a small business has can come from many sources: perhaps it's the owner's vision and experience; maybe it's ownership of a desirable patent or process; maybe it's a highly trained workforce; or it could be, and often is, a combination of several different types of strength.

Whatever the source might be, strength, like energy, is not limitless. Misapplied strength tends to dissipate rapidly and accomplish little. The stellar small business not only recognizes where their strengths lie, but they understand that strength must be conserved and applied in a selective manner. In other words, they pick their battles carefully and choose those that offer the best opportunity for profit with the least amount of risk.

The stellar small business is also willing to expend resources to increase their skill level relative to their strengths. Higher skill levels translate into better usage of strengths.

As a simple example of what I'm talking about in the preceding three paragraphs, think about a martial arts expert. They are often thin and wiry, but they can bring down an attacker three times their size with relative ease. How? They know their strengths, how and when to apply them, and have developed such skill as to actually turn an opponent's strengths against them.

C - The stellar small business exudes CHARACTER from top to bottom, has a deep COMMITMENT to CONSISTENCY, and never retreats from a CHALLENGE.

The stellar organization treats its vendors with honesty, treats its employees well and fosters their personal growth, and treats its customers like gold. Their commitment to these principles is deep, abiding and consistently applied. Challenges to these principles occur every day, but the company meets them head on and refuses to back down.

Character flows from the top down. It is rare to find an organization that exhibits organizational character where the traits are not espoused and practiced every day by the owners.

O - The stellar small business is ORGANIZED and primed and ready to take advantage of every OPPORTUNITY.

When you visit one of these stellar companies you will be struck with the sense of order you feel. Some of these companies may be extremely laid back, some very formal, and all others somewhere in between. But whether the pace of the business is lazy or frenetic, it is organized to the point where every day it moves one step closer to reaching its goals.

Organization might not be the word that comes to mind when you see these businesses in action. You might even think "chaos" at first. But if you watch long enough, you'll see that even the frenzy has purpose and the people working there are highly effective at what they do.

This organization and level of effectiveness make the business ready, willing and able to take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves.

R - The stellar small business has a commitment to RESEARCH in their market area and is willing to spend whatever it takes to guarantee they have the RESOURCES available to quickly react to any new trends identified.

These companies always seem to be in the right place, at the right time, with the proper resources in place to act. It's no accident.

E - The stellar small business demands EFFICIENCY.

There's a hard way to do things and there's a right way to do them. The right way is always the easiest way that's effective. stellar companies, AND their employees, are always looking for ways to operate more efficiently. They fall in love with better and faster, even if it's not cheaper. They understand that time is money, and efficiency multiplies time.

Is your business one of these stellar small businesses? Check your SCORE to find out!

Copyright (c) 2002

Guest Article

by: Wendy Hearn

What stands in the way of growing your business? The usual response is to do with external factors and things that are beyond your control, such as the economy and lack of buyers.  This may be true to a degree and yet often what is required to grow a business is for you to grow as a person. You can continue to look outside of your business for the reasons that stop it growing or you can look inside your business and to yourself to see what it would take to make it grow.

There are many ways that you may need to grow personally in order for your business to flourish and one of them is being able to truly connect with potential clients. You can probably list many things that you need to do and get right before you can start meeting with potential clients.
This list may include a perfect brochure, sales letter, presentation or website. Yet again these are external and surface things. Yes, all of these things do need to be right and professional, yet many people hide behind these things before putting themselves out there and connecting with clients.

You need to be out in the marketplace for people to truly get to experience you. After all, people buy people and not the glossy brochures. When you put yourself out there consistently you will be continually learning and growing.  The opportunity to learn about yourself, your market, and what your potential clients need will enable you and your business to grow faster. Your marketing materials will
evolve more easily and be reflective of the needs of your market. Instead of guessing what your market needs, you'll be there in the frontline experiencing it.

Potential clients want the opportunity to connect with you as a person, an individual rather than just be impressed, which can be very surface. They want to see what you're really like, what would you be like to work with and get a sense of what's important to you. There needs to be a connection and in order for this to happen they need to
experience you. There are many ways for you to put yourself out there rather than hide behind your desk, brochures or whatever else you justify to yourself that needs to be done first. You can be visible by:

Offering free samples
Meeting for a coffee
Participating in groups and communities

These are some of the ways you can put yourself out there and most importantly, it's about spending time with people, listening to them, discovering their needs and being your true self. Different ways of being out there work for different people and you're here to discover which ones work best for you. You'll only know this by experiencing and trying them out.

Ask yourself, "What do I need in order to put myself out there more?" Listen to your responses and work out a plan of action in order to have what you need. Take steps forward each day that enable you to participate more.

Perhaps you need more confidence, and this is built by taking action. Take an action step that is small enough that you'll do it and enough of a stretch for you that you'll build some confidence from actually having done it.

Let them experience the real you, not some impressive person or a perfect image. Stop hiding and be the person who is willing to connect with others in a meaningful way.  You and your service won't be right for everyone that you meet and that's okay. "Some will, some won't, so what, who's next". It's about having an attitude that keeps you moving ahead rather than getting stuck.

What I want for you is to allow potential clients to experience you and your service.


Wendy Hearn
Personal and Professional Coach

She works with business owners, professionals and executives to
discover and unlock their own inspiration, to effortlessly take the actions required to have the success they desire.  To receive Wendy's free newsletter, send an email to:

Copyright 2002, Wendy Hearn. All rights reserved.

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