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39th Annual Small Business Week Awards Luncheon

 

Magie CookThe Small Business Week Awards Luncheon will be held on Thursday, May 9th at 11:30 at the University Center Club.  During the event we will recognize outstanding local entrepreneurs and business owners that have contributed to the vibrancy of our economy.

In addition, we are excited to announce the Keynote Speaker, Magie Cook-Garcia. She will share her story of her amazing climb from an orphan to a millionaire with a unique recipe.  Magie Cook started a salsa company with a gift of $800 while she was homeless. Despite no experience in business, she grew Magie’s All Natural Fresh Salsa’s & Dips into a multi-million dollar company over the course of 4 years and sold it to Campbell’s Soup at a $231 million value in 2015. Today, Magie uses her experience to empower others, helping them to grow as mindful and prosperous entrepreneurs and leaders.

Seats for the Small Business Week Awards Luncheon are limited, so get your FREE tickets on EventBrite today >

Every penny counts when you are running a small business. Minimizing taxes may be the difference between a profitable business and one that is just scraping by. You all are probably thinking, “I don’t have extra time do deal with taxes.” I heard your concerns and that’s why I’ve come up with 7 tips that will help lower you tax bill and won’t take a ton of time.  Here are seven ways you can tame the stress of small business taxes and hopefully put a little (or a lot) more money back in your pockets. It’s not what you make, but what you keep.  Read more……

Small-business owners are increasingly being congratulated for their contributions to the economy. They create jobs, provide much-needed services, promote diversity and put money back into their communities.  Yet, those same business owners often are so busy with their day-to-day pursuits that they neglect their own financial needs. In doing so, they miss opportunities to protect the revenue that can help them further grow their business and secure their retirement.  Read more……

A bill to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour has cleared a legislative hurdle that sets it up for a vote by the House of Representatives in the coming weeks.  This move in Congress is a sign of broader political momentum for the minimum wage issue, long embraced by progressives who were key to the Democrats taking control of the House. The matter is poised to play prominently in the 2020 presidential campaign.  The bill also now has the support of Amazon, which last year committed to paying all of its workers at least $15 and to lobby Congress for a higher federal minimum. Read more ……

As if this tax season weren’t hectic enough, some accountants said they’ve run into software problems as they guide entrepreneurs through a new and complex 20 percent tax break.  This year marks the first season in which households will be filing under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act . This overhaul, which went into effect in 2018, doubled the standard deduction, eliminated personal exemptions and curbed itemized deductions.  The new law also introduced a break for small business owners called  the qualified business income deduction .  This tax break allows owners of “pass-through” entities, including sole proprietorships, S-corporations and partnerships, to deduct up to 20 percent of their qualified business income.  As tempting as it sounds, business owners and their accountants have been trying to figure out just who qualifies. Read more ……

The ability to chart one’s own economic destiny by becoming an entrepreneur is one of the hallmarks of capitalism. Many of today’s most recognized companies and brands began as the brainchild of an individual who embraced the risks of entrepreneurship with hopes of realizing their entrepreneurial vision. Yet, while in theory entrepreneurship is anybody’s game, rates of female entrepreneurship have historically lagged those of men.    Thankfully, for the benefit of innovation, business, and society as a whole, in recent years we have seen an increase in rates of women entrepreneurship. Globally, from 2015 to 2016, women entrepreneurship rates increased by double that of their male counterparts.  Read more ……

Women of color face additional and unique obstacles in almost every area of society, including business. Women from minority backgrounds who want to start their own businesses are up against more hurdles. These entrepreneurs typically don’t have a network of professional mentors to support them. They have more family responsibilities to balance. And they have a much more difficult time accessing money, which is obviously key to a business’s future success. We talked to 10 successful women entrepreneurs of color to share what inspired them to start their businesses and what they’d advise other business owners. The companies that these women are leading represent a range of industries and geographic locations. No matter what stage of business you’re in, you’ll be inspired by their creativity and drive.  Read more ……

Whether you’re considering the entrepreneurial life or already handling the demands of being your own boss, these ladies are sure to motivate you.  So, you have an idea. It’s great, creative, and innovative. Before you tell the world about it, what comes next? Where do you get started? And how do you get your idea to grow once you finally get the ball rolling? Entrepreneurship isn’t without its rollercoaster of emotions, from feeling excited and accomplished to overwhelmed and frustrated. But you can handle this ride, and best of all, it isn’t a ride you’re going on by yourself. These five influential women prove that being an entrepreneur, while filled with its share of hard work, is worth taking the plunge.  Read more ……

Social media is no longer an option for small businesses; it’s a necessity. In fact, more than 90 percent of marketers believe social media is important, according to Social Media Examiner. Successful social media marketing strategies increase sales, promote services and increase brand awareness. To help implement a solid social media plan, small businesses can and should turn to social media management tools.  To help you find a social media solution for your business, Business.com investigated dozens of social media software programs and services. Find out what we looked for and what might help you decide on the service for you.  Read more……

For much of modern corporate life, companies only concerned themselves with protecting the interests of their owners — and those interests were only measured in financial terms. Anything that wasn’t motivated by or at least justified by the bottom line wasn’t even contemplated. Sustainability efforts fell firmly outside of consideration.  Times have changed. Today, companies embrace many constituencies, most notably their customers and employees. Yet there’s still a prevalent misconception that environmental and sustainability goals are at odds with the bottom line. The truth is that some of the biggest and most profitable companies in the world have built sustainability into their business practices. What’s more, they’ve discovered that sustainability doesn’t have to come at a cost to owners or shareholders, and it often comes with a PR boost. Read more ……