Non-fiction author, corporate refugee, award-winning adjunct professor, foodie, coloring books, Scanner, suffers from tsundoku.

All you need is a SWOT

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After a year like no other, now is the perfect time for a deep dive into the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats your small business will face in 2021.

Using the 4 Steps of a SWOT Analysis makes strategic planning easy, even if you’ve never done it before. I often conduct a SWOT with my clients and the results always yield actionable results.

Is your hometown on this list?

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Like millions of other people I’ve been contemplating the state of the world, its people, politics, cultures, and lifestyles.

The pandemic has been, I’ll say…challenging.

Even before COVID-19, I’d been fantasizing about making a geographic change in my life and move somewhere far away. But where? Across the country? Across the world?

To satisfy my curious nature, I started researching various exotic locations focusing mostly on countries where I have friends and colleagues. Countries such as The Netherlands, Thailand, India, England, Norway, Canada, Scotland, and Australia as well as other places I’ve learned about from watching travel shows that seem wonderful. …

You’ll be glad you did

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Last year was the first time I ever had a word for the year.

“What’s your word for 2020?”

That’s how it started. It was a taken-for-granted post from a life coach I follow. As if everyone had known about this but me. I embraced the challenge and I thought it about. Deeply. Seriously. I wanted my first-ever word for the year to be a GOOD one. A POWERFUL one. A word that would DEFINE my 2020.

It took 4 seconds before I declared — out loud — that my word for the year would be ‘Clarity.’

In January, I went about my usual decluttering. Cleaning out closets, drawers, files, and donating items I don’t need or use anymore. I do this every year but for 2020 I did it with the mission of clarity, not simply to make physical space, but to clear headspace as well. …

11 Ways to Get Noticed When You Open Your Business

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The pandemic has not stopped the entrepreneurial spirit. As people get laid off, some are using the opportunity to make their own business dreams come true.

Does your new year’s plans include launching the business you’ve always dreamed of? If 2021, is the year you decide to go for it, these tips will greatly increase your chances of success.

Recently I’ve met several small business owners who opened their first business and are disappointed at the lack of attracting customers. While the circumstances may be different, I saw two clear common threads between them:

1 — No proactive marketing or launch plan upon…

It’s been a hell of a year for small businesses

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2020 has not been kind to small businesses, but there’s hope.

The Small Business Saturday movement has proved incredibly successful and helped to shift the mindset over these past 11 years. If you missed it, it’s not too late to implement some of the tips I shared in my recent Small Business Saturday article.

Smart marketing strategies along with best-practices execution are the way to compete with big-box stores.

In my article on Marketing in a Pandemic, I identify three trends and the steps to take to stay afloat while the world battles this unprecedented economic crisis.

Here’s a very popular article and webinar series I’ve done over the years, titled Top 10 Marketing Mistakes and how you can avoid them. …

That was 9 years ago and I’m still grieving

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What started just like any normal day, turned into hell within moments.

First, he said he didn’t feel well. Then he denied saying it. Then he just couldn’t hide it any longer. Days went by, then weeks. His skin turned yellow as did his eyes. He looked jaundiced and was losing weight. His clothes were hanging on him. I wasn’t the only one who noticed.

Because he had given up his medical insurance to be able to pay his part-time employees’ salary, he didn’t go to a doctor. …

Your guide to making the most of this day during an especially difficult year for small businesses

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In just a few days, the successful #SmallBusinessSaturday event will take place on November 28th. As always, it falls on Thanksgiving Weekend and follows Black Friday.

Now in its 11th year, Small Business Saturday (started by American Express) has sparked a social movement to #ShopSmall and #ShopLocal for the holiday season. In 2011 even the US Senate got on board to support the movement and now it is affecting real and lasting change on consumer shopping behavior.

Whether you’re a small business owner or a consumer, here’s how you can make the most of #SmallBusinessSaturday:

  1. Go to the American Express website. There you’ll find an Event Inspiration idea package along with downloadable logos to use digitally and in print. …

Add water plus these items and bliss out

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How much do I love bubble baths? Let me count the ways.

A great bubble bath is like a spa treatment, but even better because you don’t need an appointment and there’s no time limit.

Empaths and water are a heavenly match and with all the stressors in the world lately, I’ve been perfecting my bubble bath routine.

Turns out, there’s a reason for this. According to Dr. Judith Orloff’s book The Empath’s Survival Guide, bubble baths are an important protection strategy for us.

A few years ago (before I read this book and before I knew I was an empath) a massage therapist told me about soaking in Epsom salts because I pulled a muscle in my neck and was in a lot of pain. …

Everything you ever wanted to know…well, maybe

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For my writing blog, I chose the name Dragonfly Brain after reading an article about the author Phillip Tetlock and his study of integrators, those people who have a breadth of experience across subjects and industries which enables them to make connections and see things differently.

He likened this ability to that of a dragonfly’s eyes because dragonflies have tens of thousands of eye lenses, each with a different perspective, thereby aggregating to a greater understanding of their world.

In this way, he makes the case for the oft less-respected ‘generalists’ of life, who often outperform ‘specialists’ because their sensory receptors process and assimilate information in new and different ways of creating solutions others don’t see. …

Can your business keep up with changing consumer behaviors?

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Last month I had the honor of being a panel speaker as part of the American Marketing Association’s Connecticut Chapter webinar titled Marketing in a Pandemic.

I identified three overarching trends shaping marketing now and going forward post-pandemic.

The first trend we have to talk about is retail.

With so many bankruptcies (Lord & Taylor, Century 21, Men’s Wearhouse, Pier 1, & others) brands’ access to millions of their end buyers is cut off.

Therefore, brands will be forced to adopt Direct to Consumer (DTC) marketing and operations strategies to forge relationships with their end buyers.

In 2019, 9500 stores filed for bankruptcy, and thanks to the pandemic, it’s projected that an additional 25,000+ stores will close by the end of 2020. …

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