Category: Business

Knowing When to Refinance

Knowing When to Refinance

When a borrower is looking to refinance, it is often hard to decide if it is worth the expense. According to the Federal Reserve, the average closing costs for a mortgage refinance can range from 3 to 6 percent of the loan amount. This can get quite costly, especially for mortgages over $100,000. It is always a good idea for a borrower to negotiate any closing costs with the lender, in order to receive the best deal in the long run. Lenders typically have a few suggestions to help borrower make a solid decision on refinancing.

First and foremost, the borrower needs to look at the current interest rate versus his mortgage interest rate. If the difference is at least one full percentage point, it is worth considering the refinance. However, if it is 2 or more percentage points lower, the borrower should seriously consider refinancing. This difference in interest rate could save him thousands over the life of the loan.

Next, the borrower should consider his break even point on the refinancing closing costs. The borrower should ask the lender for a Good Faith Estimate, which outlines the closing costs associated with loan. He should take the total closing costs and divide it by the amount of savings in the monthly payment each month. For example, if the mortgage will cost the borrower $3,000 to close and it save him $200 a month, it will take him 15 months to break even. It is usually a good idea to refinance if the break even point is within 2 years, or 24 months of the refinance’s closing date.

Lastly, the borrower needs to consider the length of time he is planning on being in the residence. If the borrower is not going to be in the residence long enough to break even on the closing costs, or will break even within a year of a planned move, refinancing is probably not in his best interest. Additionally, if the borrower is looking to refinance from a variable or adjustable rate mortgage to a fixed rate product, this is only a good idea if the rate will be fixed in for a considerable length of time before an eventual move.

Family Member with Finances

Helping a Family Member with Finances: 6 Rules to Follow

Helping a family member with finances can lead to disaster. Why? Most people don’t know how to approach a family about money for fear of losing this person’s love. It’s a situation I’ve experienced personally. After giving a relative several loans and never getting paid back, I reacted with anger. Although this person should have paid me back, my approach was completely wrong. It took years for our relationship to heal. The event taught me a good lesson and a few rules to follow anytime you want to help a relative with finances.

Rule #1 – Only loan money to a family member that you an afford to lose.

Helping a family member with his finances often starts with a loan. It’s a loan that bails him out of a financial mess. However, people who are struggling with money often can’t pay it back. So, it’s best only to loan money to a family member if you can afford to lose it. It will be less risky and help you avoid a lot of hard feelings.

Rule #2 – Talk about money to a family member in a non-threatening environment.

If you want to help a family member with his finances, do it in a non-threading environment. So Thanksgiving dinner is not a great time to bring up the fact that your kid brother doesn’t know how to budget. Instead, take him out to dinner (one-on-one) and explain how much you love him and are concerned about his future. Then, talk about the subject of money – preferably after you’ve eaten your meals.

Rule #3 – Ask your family member if it is all right to help him with his finances.

No matter how strongly you feel about helping your family member with his finances, only do it if he gives you the green light. Otherwise, he will feel bullied or belittled, especially if you are an older sibling. So offer to help him and respect whatever answer he gives you.

Rule #4 – Teach your family member about money by admitting your own mistakes.

Teach your family member how to manage money. Your lesson should start with a few examples of how you blew it financially. Use these situations to help your family member feel more comfortable and less judged about his current financial situation. Then, get down to basics. Talk about budgeting, investing and living within one’s means.

Rule #5 – Walk Your family member through the process of resolving his financial crisis.

One of the most supportive things you can do with a family member struggling with anything is to walk with him through it. This means that you will have to actively assist your family member in getting out of his current financial situation. You may have to call bill collectors, go through old bills, write out a budget or boost him up while he does these things. Just be sure to only do the things that your family member is comfortable with you doing and to ask in advance.

Rule #6 – Don’t throw your assistance back in your family member’s face after it’s over.

The quickest way to ruin a family relationship is to throw everything you’ve ever done for a sibling, child, mother or father back in his or her face. Besides making you sound like a jerk, it makes the person feel small. Remember, even if you gave good advice, the family member took it and did the work. So give them the respect of “silence.” Let your family member brag about how you helped him out of a financial jam.

Follow these six rules and you’ll be able to help a family member with finances without ruining your relationship. Your relative will get much needed help and you will get a chance to be a good relative. It is a win-win situation.

Arbitrage in the Real World

Arbitrage in the Real World

When getting into the investment game, you might hear about arbitrage. It’s a fancy word that basically means making a profit without any risk. Well you may ask yourself how this can happen, and of course how you can get in on it. Sadly it doesn’t occur very often in the market, but it can and does occur. To better understand why we will look at areal world example and then translate that into the world of finance.

If you were to go to a flea market and see a Mickey Mantle rookie card selling for $5, you may quickly realize that its worth more elsewhere. The simple idea would be to buy it and go sell it later. This isn’t really arbitrage because you would then have risked your $5 in hopes of earning more. In this situation you would need to find a buyer on the other side of the flea market who wants to purchase the card from you for $50, take their money and use it to buy the card and bring it back to them. This way your money was never at risk, and you still made an incredible profit. It may seem a little dishonest, but in all reality the customer you sold to wanted to pay $50 for the card, and the person you bought it from wanted $5 for it, so everyone got what they wanted and you were simply able to broker a deal with some nice gain for yourself.

These situations may be few and far between, but in the world of finance they can be found. In this age of technological advancement it becomes harder and harder since more information is available to more and more people. Arbitrage is based on that difference in available information, you are essentially earning by knowing more than the other two parties involved.

One place where this still occurs in finance is in monetary exchange rates. Sometimes when these exchange rates change they don’t all change at the same time allowing for some arbitrage until they catch up to each other. For example if the exchange rates are all even between the US dollar the Euro and The Canadian Dollar, lets say 1=1=1 and then the rate changes between the US Dollar and The Euro, lets say $1.50 to One Euro the Canadian exchange rates between the two, before it catches up to the new rate would create an ideal method for arbitrage since it would still be 1=1=1. You could essentially, by exchanging dollars into Canadian dollars then into Euros still get the old rate of return and get profit when you convert those Euros into dollars using the new rate of 1 to 1.5. No risk and great return, the perfect example of arbitrage.

Madoff's Fraud

Hit by Madoff’s Fraud, Indianapolis Couple Rebuilds Finances

Indianapolis — Two years ago, my husband and I could see the economic downturn on the horizon. Homes on our block took longer to sell. Fewer customers shopped at the local mall. But we had no idea we were entering a recession that would drag on for at least two years. Now we are wondering when it will end.

We felt lucky to be living in Indianapolis, a city with a relatively low cost of living. We consider ourselves reasonably frugal.

All that changed when Bernard Madoff entered our lives. It was Dec. 14, 2008. My husband and I received a phone call informing us that money we’d invested in a fund had ties to Madoff. We had lost over $30,000 from a portion of a fund, the Merriwell Fund, part of which was invested with Madoff.

Even so, we were fortunate. Madoff wiped out many investors. Local Indianapolis temples and Jewish organizations, which had money tied up with Madoff, not only had to cut costs drastically but fire employees and restrict opening hours to stay afloat. We got off lightly; our financial portfolio had been hit — but not totaled.

However, our financial advisers admonished us to make major changes to our financial planning and not just because of Madoff. Other economic challenges started facing us and other Indianapolis families.

Homes are taking longer to sell and nervous friends asked us for job leads. (Indianapolis’ unemployment rate was at 7.7 percent in September.) When homes on our street sell, they go for bargain rates. After years of seeing our home appreciate it value, it is a shock to discover its lower value. That impacts our financial security, too.

Our investments are diversified, so we haven’t lost everything. But there’s never a good time for a couple in their mid 50s (I’m 55, my husband is 56) to take damage to their investments. We don’t have the advantage of youth and time to make up our losses before retirement.

When we got the Madoff news, we had one son in college. We’d promised to help him out if he got a scholarship that covered tuition. But because of financial woes, we had to scale back on how much we helped him.

That meant he had to take on student loans, something we’d hoped he could avoid for as long as possible. We still paid his health insurance, but he had to take a second job while at school.

Then, in late August, my husband’s employer, a local Indiana university, announced a pay freeze to manage costs. My husband, a college professor, won’t get a pay raise for the coming year. We’re happy he still has a job with benefits. But it did impact our budget. It also affected our investments, the ones outside Madoff’s reach.

Our retirement date was starting to look like a dream, somewhere in the distant future.

We’ve halved our monthly budget and still consider ourselves lucky. Lucky to have jobs when Indianapolis has high unemployment. Lucky to have a home and food on the table. Lucky not to have our finances scorched to the ground by Madoff. We’ve been told that we need to think of the long term and keep investing in the stock market to build our portfolio back to where it was before Madoff came along. Our advisers urge us to have trust in our financial future. We’re working on it.


Profit from the Mistakes of Others

Many Internet users are inexperienced and make a lot of mistakes. Learn how to profit from these errors, and how to make sure that no one will profit from your mistakes!


The Pokemon Problem
One of the most common mistakes people make when they are looking for something on the web is misspelling the site name. This happens constantly and can mean a big loss of revenue if you don’t take it into account.

For example, Pokemon has been one of the most popular search phrases on web search engines for months. But unfortunately for Nintendo, the owners of the Pokemon franchise, a lot of people don’t know how to spell Pokemon correctly! Lycos recently published their raw information for a week of searches, and Pokeman (with an a) came up higher than Pokemon (with an o).

What does this mean for Nintendo? It means that a ton of their fans ended up at the Pokeman site instead of the Pokemon site! That means Nintendo is losing out on a lot of money because of people’s simple mistakes.

Capitalize on people’s mistakes by anticipating them. Brainstorm all the ways one someone could misspell your company name, product or site name. Take the most common misspellings and use these words as keywords when you develop your site meta tags, and consider registering additional domain names for the misspelled versions. This will direct a lot more visitors to your site. Think how much more Nintendo could be making if they had done this!

The White House Sex Problem
No matter where you look nowadays, dot-com jumps out at you. You see it on the sides of busses, in magazines, on TV, everywhere! Because of this, most people assume that if you have a web site, it is a .com web site. Many people don’t even know that .gov, .edu, .net or other top-level domains even exist.

The entrepreneurs at (warning-adult subject matter) knew this. They took advantage of the White House name and have turned it into a huge draw for their adult site. Anyone looking for the real White House ( that stumbles upon the adult site is in for a shock

You can use this type of mistake to your advantage by registering .com versions of your domain names if you haven’t done so already. This is especially important for .net, .org and foreign

sites. Register the .com domain in addition to whatever the technically correct domain is for your site. Have both domain names point to your web site. This costs almost nothing to do. Not only will this bring more people to your site, but it can avoid embarrassing situations like the White House one!

More Common Mistakes
These are just a couple of examples of common mistakes that you can take advantage of to make your site more profitable. Taking these types of mistakes into account can also help your viewers by making your site easier to find.

If you have ideas on other ways to take advantage of common web surfer mistakes, leave a message in the comment area!

good bye

Kiss Your Assets Goodbye!

The controversy over Napster and other free music sharing systems is rocking the web. If your company deals with any sort of digital information, such as music, video, or data, you should follow this conflict closely, because how it is resolved may dramatically affect the future of your business. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is suing Napster, a site that allows users to freely share music files, claiming that Napster infringes on the rights of the recording industry. It has enlisted heavy metal rocker Lars Ulrich, country music sweethearts The Dixie Chicks, and rap CEO Sean “Puffy” Combs as spokespeople.

Meanwhile, more than 20 million Internet users are actively involved in sharing free mp3 music files. Getting free music over the Internet is seen by many as just a high-tech version of getting music over the radio. The conflict is rapidly coming to a head. The U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel has issued an injunction against Napster, calling the site “a monster”. The injunction may effectively shut the site down. Another free music site, CuteMX, has shut its service down pending the results of this lawsuit. Hank Barry, the CEO of Napster, vows to fight this all the way to the Supreme Court.

This case could prove to be a pivotal case in the struggle between the creators of new Internet technologies and copyright owners. The decision in this case could affect 20 million Napster users. Because the conflict is a struggle between the traditional rights of copyright owners and the latest Internet technologies, the effects of this ruling could affect all Internet users.

Free File Sharing is the New Reality
It would be hard to make an effective argument that Napster doesn’t violate the traditional rights of copyright owners. What Napster has done is become the Yahoo of bootlegging. The judge in this case is right, Napster is a business based on helping people bootleg music.

But the point is moot. There is no way to stop the sharing of mp3’s because there are so many new file sharing technologies and so many people actively using them. The RIAA can win the battle but not the war.

The RIAA is doing the only thing it can do, if it wants to fight against this. Like Microsoft in its anti-trust case, the RIAA is using the legal system to delay the inevitable so that it can figure out better ways of retaining control of its

business. To be successful in the long run, though, the RIAA members must figure out how to use the Internet to their advantage.

Fighting Won’t Work
There is only one way for the music industry to deal with this situation: The RIAA must learn how to sail against the wind. The traditional music industry can only survive this conflict by learning how to harness the power of these new Internet technologies and the people using them.

The RIAA members must adapt their ways to the reality of the interchange of information over the Internet.

  • They can do this by using the Internet as a high-speed, low-cost method of generating interest in their product. (ie., The Blair Witch Project)
  • The music companies can tap into the increased distribution and attention the Internet creates by making more interesting physical products, such as cd’s with more exciting design, packaging, lyric sheets, and photos.
  • The music industry can translate the success of a free product into a desire for collectible commercial items by making each cd part of a set, or by creating limited editions in a variety of formats. (ie. Pokemon, Beanie Babies)
  • RIAA members can create tools, software and media for distributing free music and playing it. This could include mp3 software, mp3 players, and digital music hardware.

The music industry is going to find that, even though they are technically right in their fight to shut down Napster, their success depends on turning this revolution into their own cause.

This Conflict Affects Everyone
The free music revolution is the beginning of the conflicts that Internet technologies will create over copyright ownership. The same types of technologies that are allowing the free exchange of music over the Internet can be used to allow movies, software and ultimately any type of digital information to be copied. This trend is irreversible, massive, and any company that deals with copyrighted information will have to deal with it.


Yes You Need A Good Contract

Hello folks. Now that my Dad/lawyer and I have rewritten my contract for the umpteenth time, I think it’s finally in a great state to share with all of you. Please feel free to use whatever you want from it in your contract. And yes, you need a contract. No matter what you do out of love 🙂 it’s still good to have something countersigned on actual paper just in case. Your worst enemy is actually not your client but a vague contract or no contract at all. Nothing can bite you in the ass like that.

Now let’s look at some of the more important or interesting clauses we have in here.

Section 1a
Here we define that the contracted work will be laid out in section 1d but that we recognise that things come up during the project. We call these “options” or “overage,” and this assures that neither I nor my staff are working for free. Options are add-on features or tasks, such as “logo design” or “online auctions” that the client may or may not want. Overage is that annoying extra work you sometimes get because the client changes his or her mind, text, or graphics and expects you to just keep redoing the same thing over and over for free. No no no. 🙂 You want your contract to say the same kind of thing, even if you don’t like my nomenclature, because you absolutely do not want to be stuck with a vague contract. You want them to know up front you are charging for anything over and above what you are contracting to do.

Section 1d
This is the section where I put in detail exactly what we are contracting to do and any options we’ve already priced out. Since technologies and minds change, we also lay out very clearly here what languages we are using, what it is designed to be compatible with, what server software we’re using, and the like. This saves us from someone thinking that moving a site from UNIX to NT is free or even moving from one NT server to another is free. The paragraph after that details what file formats we require and states that anything outside of those may incur extra cost. That saves you from those lovely clients who send you Quark Express documents when you need text in Word and graphics separately and think that your time to extract what you need is free. It also assures the client that if they give you exactly what you need how you need it, there won’t be any surprise charges.
Section 1e
This clause is the siamese twin to the rest of section 1 in that it reiterates that anything NOT contract is not necessarily included. This saves you from people who “assume” everything from “I thought that was going to be an interactive Flash file” to “I thought you were going to create a tiny simple button.” If we don’t say we’re doing it, it may cost you extra. The end.

Sections 2a-2d
If the client pays on time and in full, they get the rights to everything we’ve done, as in they now own it all as a work for hire. However, we have the right to reuse bits of code and why not since everyone who does custom sites (like we do) is probably reusing at least SOME code in every site. We don’t want any client coming back to us saying “hey I thought I owned the rights to email people from my site.” That’ll put ya out of business. We also say that we keep the right to show our work for our marketing; for example, we could print a color brochure that shows screen shots. Section 2e
Having my company’s logo and link has been becoming less and less important to me over the years of doing this. This is mostly because I’ve found that most of my clients come to me from (in this order) finding me on Yahoo, being referred by a client, being referred by a friend or family member, and then coming from a site we did. So nowadays, I still like to sign our work with our logo and link, but if someone wants to bury it in the site, I’m OK with that.

Section 3a
Our warranty covers everything we build and create as long as it hasn’t been messed with by anyone outside of us. So if the client hires another company or a high school kid or anybody else on the planet, and that person goes into the site and takes out some ASP code or who knows what, we will NOT fix that for free. I think this makes us look “good” since people like to know that we back our work yet at the same time we don’t get stuck fixing things for free if we didn’t break them.

Section 3b
This section is weird as you may not have seen anything like it before (or maybe you have). This clause talks about what we’ll do if something we created turns out to infringe someone’s copyright or trademark. You may not want to “go there” in your contract if you are not comfy “going there” and the client has not asked for it. But if you like saying flat out what you’ll do, you may want to check out what we say we’ll do. Just make sure you clearly say this only relates to work YOU’VE created and NOT any artwork, text, or the like provided by your client. You don’t want to accidentally be responsible for their crap by having a vague contract!

Section 4b
This one was suggested by a very nice consultant I met through 🙂 This allows us to basically refuse to put up really anything on the site that we think is illegal or bad taste or the like. Obviously, if you’re making porn sites, I can’t imagine what this might be :), but for those of us doing corporate and e-commerce sites, you may want that in there. I’ve actually been doing this all along – I like to warn clients if something seems wrong or illegal, but now according to my contract, the client has to be OK with me having that kind of “final say” in a sense.

Section 6
Hey just make sure you change the state and county to yours unless you’d like to pop by lovely Suffolk County for all your lawsuit needs. 🙂 Do NOT change this to where your client is located. You are doing business where you are located even if your client is in another county, state, or country. You are doing that business under the laws where you work and you don’t know poop about the laws anywhere else (it’s just safe to say that). You also don’t want to have to travel to Florida to sue someone if you live and work in Maine. Dad (aka my attorney and yes he’s a real attorney) says that anybody pushing to change this clause to their location thinks they might be sued and doesn’t want to have to travel or find an out-of-state attorney. 🙂

Section 7
Get it in writing. Everything. Email, fax, letters. Anything that is a “handshake” or “gentleman’s agreement” outside of this document or anything else in writing doesn’t exist. This saves everybody from he said/she said type stuff down the road. This keeps you from the old “but you said you’d…” whether or not it’s true. Put it all in writing. I use email mostly, so if I send a client a set of options or proposal as a PDF, spreadsheet, or email, I tell them they MUST write back a full sentence saying they OK us to do X extra work for $Y. Section 8
So what happens if the client cancels? Doesn’t pay on time? What if you mess up? This clause details everybody’s rights in each scenario. We will be changing this clause soon to clearly state that a client who cannot abide by the time frame in section 1b and does not get written/emailed permission to change the time frame is in breach of this agreement. Why? Well I don’t know about you, but sometimes our scheduling is tight. If the client just thinks they can lag and lag and take months to do something that was had a real deadline, well I’d like that client to now consider that they may be in breach of the contract. I have a client currently who was supposed to OK the site design in early January so that the site could be ready for testing by late January. We are STILL working on the design and my programmers haven’t even started their work. I’d like the contract to be clearer that this guy has breached the contract. That would allow me to cut him off OR make it clear that he now has to work around our schedule.
So those are the important bits with most of the war stores of why they’re there taken out. 🙂 Hopefully reviewing our contract, what’s in there, and why will help you create an excellent contract that will cover your business ass quite well. All of this may sound really anal, but the day you have a problem with someone is the day you’ll see why we’ve done all this. Once upon a time, my contract was barely 3 pages long. Now it’s nearly 7 because vague stuff put me in too many bad places and made me eat costs I never should have had to. I’m hoping you can learn from our 5 full years of contract evolution.


An Attitude for Success for Successful Entrepreneurship

Skill and practice are of course necessary for consistently high performance. When these are supplemented with an ingrained belief that you have what it takes to beat the competition, superior performance can result. How do these apply to successful entrepreneurs?

Positive Attitudes and Thoughts

All of us would have heard about the key importance of positive thinking and how it can lead to success in what we do. Just what are the elements of this success attitude as it relates to business entrepreneurs?

  • Doing What you Love: If you go into a store, what type of salesperson makes you feel like doing business with the store: someone who is not only pleased to meet you but who also knows everything about the merchandise, or someone who seems bored to be at the counter and is unable to answer your queries? The same applies to your customers and employees. If you exude happiness and have acquired detailed knowledge about your business, you will attract not only customers but also good employees. And this combination of happiness and detailed knowledge typically results when you like what you do day after day.
  • Integrity that Generates Trust: Unlike the famed used car salesman of legends, successful businesspersons make sure that their customers are delighted with what they get. And the result is that these customers bring in more customers through word of mouth.
  • Learning from Failures: Like the child who learns and grows by hurting herself or himself in different ways, businesspersons also learn by making mistakes and learning from these. The accomplished performance of a successful businessperson you might come across is typically the final result of probably years of not so perfect performance. Few, if any, of us are businesspersons by birth.
  • Self Belief: Mistakes tend to undermine our belief in ourselves. The initial learning period when we make the mistakes will also typically be the period when we face a lot of negative responses in our business encounters. Both the mistakes and the negative responses can dishearten most of us. It is only a strong belief that we are on the right track that can sustain us through this period.
  • Ability to Adapt to Changes: Products are changing, skill requirements are changing, people’s lifestyles are changing and businesses have no option but to cater to the changes. In this age of smart phones, for example, the fact that yours is a long-established business cannot get you sales volumes with the bulky old models that you sold so successfully years ago. Businesses have to adapt to changing market requirements and customer profiles.
  • Setting an Example at the Workplace: If employees see you working seriously and long, and if they see you willing to listen to them and even accept criticism, the culture at the workplace will tend to be a highly productive environment. A bossy boss who won’t admit mistakes and acts arbitrarily tend to demoralize the whole workplace.
  • Act, not just Plan: While you need to think and plan, what is important is to act when action is needed. There might be occasions when you do not have the time to review alternatives and take a considered decision. Intuition, based on past experiences, can be a good source for decisions. Successful businesspersons would have developed sound intuitions, and the habit of basing actions on these intuitions.

The Right Attitude can Overcome Other Limitations

To set up and run a business successfully, you need know-how, skills to get desired results in a repeatable fashion and physical and financial resources. However, right attitude can make up for limitations of know-how, skills and resources to a large extent.

For example, you are likely to find it easy to get sound advice, associates, employees and other support and help to cope with the limitations if you are enthusiastic about your business and project a dependable and trustworthy image.

The right attitude is what distinguishes the true winner from the also-rans. A success attitude consists of things like enthusiasm for your business, integrity that inspires trust, the ability to learn from experience, belief in the soundness of your business and your ability to succeed, ability to adapt to changing conditions and the habit of acting when action is needed.


Entrepreneurship Certificate Can Lead to Being a Talent Manager

When looking for an MBA program, don’t think of the barriers of acceptance such as GMAT requirements. This just means the school really does care about its students and wants to ensure the best possible education and results for each participant.

Is Choosing a New Path the Right Way to Change Careers/Follow a Dream

  1. Hi Paym**,

I found your email id from the website. I am from Bangalore, India.

Like many others I am in a total dilemma, about the path i should follow.

Presently I am working in a top Indian IT MNC, since December 2014.I have completed by engineering graduation. However, being myself exposed to the world after that, I dream of pursuing a good career in the media industry. This wish invaded my thoughts when I became the batch captain for the arts competition held at my college.

However, presently I am working in IT field. So for the proper career change, I want to do MBA.


Though I am interested in arts and culture, I am not talented in any performing art. But I love managing talented people. So I thought I shall do an MBA from a good university ,with an elective related to this.

But still I am confused which school shall i seek and go further regarding my research to find an apt school.

I have not taken the GMAT or any English proficiency test so far.

Guidance on the Right Path for Talent Manager

Please guide me ahead, regarding the following:

1.Am I right in choosing to learn MBA for this ?

2.Shall I do any specialized MBA or a general one?

3.Which are the best schools which do not seek GMAT score.

I will be very thankful to you for your kind reply. God Bless.

Thanks and Regards,

MBA Will Help in Any Chosen Career Change

  1. You are on an excellent path and have chosen the right way to get there! An MBA will certainly enhance any direction you choose with media, or any other specialized career, as all deal with business practices in some shape or form.

Specializing in media/arts would be beneficial to your degree, as would self-employment sections or small business set up.

But you’re wrong to think you wouldn’t pass the GMAT or to find a school without this requirement. If the school does not care that the students are able to fully understand the information provided, it’s doubtful the school will be providing you with the best information! There are many online GMAT courses – and there are many low cost books/resources to help you study/prepare for the GMAT (if you don’t want to take the course). Libraries will often buy books suggested by its patrons, so start there for GMAT resources.

Consider the Entrepreneurship Certificate to Start New Career Even Sooner

Online MBA programs are one option that allows you to work/make money while getting your degree. One suggestion is Keller Graduate School of Management, as you can start with the Entrepreneurship Certificate and have it apply to your MBA. But it gives you the basics of what you want to do, as a talent manager you are an entrepreneur! You may even find you can start your new career with just this certificate, and continue with your MBA as your business grows.

Good Luck!


Free Business Plan How To: Write Your Business Plan With This Step By Step How To

Are you hoping to become an entrepreneur and need a free business plan to determine its viability? Read through this section-by-section list of a business plan to get a better idea of the work ahead of you, or to jump right in and get started. Although each section of your free business plan is listed in the most commonly accepted order that a banker or lender is looking for, please note that most entrepreneurs start with the market and competitive analysis first, then move to the industry and management plans, then the financial plan and finally the executive summary.

Free Business Plan Section #1: Executive Summary

The executive summary section of a business plan gives an overview of the business to lenders and creditors, and ties up the entire business plan into a couple paragraphs at most.

Free Business Plan Section #2: Company History (or Background)

Detailing the history of the business, which can vary depending on whether or not you are starting a franchise, bought a business, are taking over the family business, or are starting from scratch. Even brand new businesses have a history of how they came to be.

Free Business Plan Section #3: Industry

The industry section of a business plan consists of descring trends within the industry that the business works within, as well as any major players and their gross estimated sales. This section ends with a summary of where the proposed business falls within the industry.

Free Business Plan Section #4: Market Analysis

A market analysis is not the same thing as a marketing plan (which comes later). Market analysis consists of reviewing the market your business plans on working within, both geographically and demographically, and how the business will serve the needs of your potential clients and customers.

Free Business Plan Section #5: Competitive Analysis

Who is your main competition? Indirect competitor? How do your business plan to compete with these entities, and what do you plan on doing differently? These questions and other entry barriers are all discussed in the competitive analysis section of a free business plan.

Free Business Plan Section #6: Marketing Plan

A marketing plan can be a stand-alone document for existing businesses, but it also serves a very important purpose in a business plan, which is to explain your company’s plans for pricing, advertising, promotion, and sales strategies.

Free Business Plan Section #6: Management Plan

Who will run the day-to-day business operations of your entrepreneurial venture? How will you find a team, what qualifications will they need, and who will report to whom? These and other management-related factors all belong in the management plan section of your business plan.

Free Business Plan Section #7: Operating Plan

The operating plan speaks about the physical objects your business will embody, use and be housed wihin, such as inventory, equipment, location, suppliers and a detailed explanation of how your product or service is created from start to finish.

Free Business Plan Section #8: Financial Plan

The financial plan consists of three financial statements: the balance sheet, income statement and cash flow.