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Articles filed under Kendall, Jim

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  • Use social, traditional media to deliver sales message Aug 19, 2013 10:53 AM
    To determine the best way to reach your customer base with a sales-marketing message, you really need to know how your targets respond to various types of media — and messages. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall explores the issue.

  • Who will read the business book you’re writing? Aug 12, 2013 5:51 AM
    There are two reasons to write a business book, according to Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall. He explores those reasons.

  • Successful serial entrepreneur shares her insights Aug 5, 2013 9:13 AM
    Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall speaks with former Glen Ellyn resident and current entrepreneur Karen Lennon about how she has started eight business. She offers tips to others. Her first business plan was seven words: We should be doing more in Chicago.

  • Cheaper financing, better results spark business marketplace Jul 29, 2013 8:02 AM
    This may be the time to put your small business on the market. For one thing, financing tends to be available and money is really cheap. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall looks at this trend.

  • Increased small business activity points to economic gains Jul 22, 2013 5:36 AM
    If small business actually is the bell cow for economic activity, the outlook may be brighter than it has been in some time. At least that’s what conversations with four suburban business owners seem to indicate, Small Business Columnist Jim Kenall reports.

  • Businesses can use time to get health care right Jul 15, 2013 6:48 AM
    The extra 12 months that businesses with 50 or more full-time workers gained earlier this month before having to meet Affordable Care Act health insurance requirements may be important to get their coverage and reporting right.

  • What happens when angels, companies needing capital meet Jul 5, 2013 11:49 AM
    The bringing together of fledgling businesses needing capital and individuals with money to invest is often something of a mystery to entrepreneurs. Small Business Columnist has been investigating the issue and shares what he learned in his weekly column.

  • Consultant lists top small business issues, suggests solutions Jul 1, 2013 10:33 AM
    Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall finds that the three biggest issues most small businesses face and chances are you'll get this list: Differentiation other than price. Getting new customers. Managing cash flow.

  • Business owner’s summer challenge: Four half-days Jun 24, 2013 6:05 AM
    I need four half-days of your time. Actually, it’s your business that needs those four half-days, time you spend away from the company contemplating its present, future and how to make both better. How nice that summer days are ideal for reviewing and strategizing.

  • Palatine law firm happy with podcast results Jun 17, 2013 5:44 AM
    Businesses that “do podcasts well can get a lot of (website) traffic,” says Brian Basilico of Lavelle Law Ltd. in Palatine. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall looks at the issue.

  • Guide’s transition to digital may be example for others Jun 10, 2013 5:44 AM
    The first 10,000 copies of Oaklee’s Family Guide were distributed along the Arlington Heights Memorial Day parade route by Nancy Stevens and a handful of other PTA moms (and their families) who helped found the publication. That was 1999. Today 500,000 print copies are distributed, free, at 1,000 locations in the west, northwest and north suburbs, and in Chicago.

  • Health care rules, small business strategic issues collide Jun 3, 2013 5:30 AM
    It’s time to focus on what employers must do under the new health care rules — Obamacare or, more correctly, the Affordable Care Act. “The rules are extremely complicated,” says Oak Park attorney and benefits sage Larry Grudzien. Not only are the rules complicated, but health coverage is beginning to drive business strategies. “There are three internal elements — finance, operations and human resources — that relate directly to the health coverage issue,” says Sharon Harder, president of C3 Advisors LLC, Wheaton. Finance is on Harder’s list thanks to uncertain benefit costs and possible penalties for not complying. Operations matters, she says, because employee head counts impact ACA requirements. HR is a factor “because businesses looking for qualified employees must offer benefits,” Harder says. Among the issues: ź Businesses are required to offer coverage when workforce head counts reach 50, including full-time equivalents. Smaller businesses have options. ź There’s a penalty — technically an excise tax — for not providing required coverage and another if the coverage provided is deemed not affordable. ź Premiums almost certainly will rise, in part to pay for the cost of covering pre-existing conditions. Some premiums have soared 20 percent and more already this year. ź If your favorite solution is to scuttle coverage and send employees to the Illinois Health Insurance Exchange for lower-cost coverage, you might talk with Grudzien first. “I’m advising clients to not send employees to the insurance exchange,” he says. “There will be ‘navigators’ there to help individuals find their way, but the navigators can’t talk about insurance. They’re not licensed.” Tim Lavin suggests that companies with grandfathered plans “may want to hold on” for a bit. Employees in grandfathered plans — basically, those that existed before ACA and have not changed — “don’t get all the (ACA-mandated) benefits, but premium increases have been lower on such plans,” says Lavin, president of The Lavin Insurance Agency, Schaumburg. “I’ve seen 30 percent increases” on non-grandfathered plans, Lavin says. Angela Holten, head of Holten Financial Group Inc., DeKalb, holds out hope that coverage in some situations could be less costly. “Suppose everyone in your group is in their late 50s and 60s — machine shop workers, for example.” It’s possible, she says, that exchange-based coverage may be less expensive — although, she said last month, “We haven’t seen rates yet.” Clearly, there are decisions business owners must make. Karen Codere, a Rosemont-based human resources consultant for Insperity Inc., a Houston, TX, company that offers benefit and other HR programs to businesses of all sizes, raises two questions: “What kind of employee do you want to retain? What kind of insurance will you provide” to retain those employees? Interesting questions. You may find some answers at the Illinois SBDC at Waubonsee Community College, Aurora, which is hosting a free ACA presentation by Harder June 28. The SBDC at Elgin Community College offers its own free ACA presentation June 25. A Daily Herald-Business Ledger Newsmakers’ Forum Thursday (June 6) includes an ACA discussion. ź Jim Kendall welcomes comments at JKendall@121MarketingResources.com © 2013 121 Marketing Resources Inc.

  • Strategy, trusted advisor needed to cope with Obamacare May 27, 2013 6:12 AM
    Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall talks to a local expert about the Affordable Care Act and covers what companies need to know right now.

  • Your social media initiatives should follow customers’ lead May 20, 2013 7:47 AM
    Still uncertain about social media and your business? Your next step may be to ask your customers which social media platforms they use. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall looks at the issue of social media.

  • Senior entrepreneurs bring patience, experience to startups May 13, 2013 9:27 AM
    Starting a business isn't just for the younger crowd. Thanks in part to lingering unemployment and to Baby Boomers needing to pad retirement accounts, 25 percent of those 65 and older are self-employed. Fifteen percent in the 50-64 age bracket are self-employed, too.

  • Sports offer small business marketing opportunities May 6, 2013 8:05 AM
    Want to reach homeowners? Looking for young families with kids and solid incomes? The Chicago Red Stars have them. So do the Chicago Wolves and Schaumburg Boomers. Small Business columnist Jim Kendall explores the marketing topic.

  • Uncertainties make chat with tax adviser a good idea Apr 29, 2013 5:30 AM
    There are some small business and small business owner tax positives in 2013, but there also are some issues that make a conversation with your CPA, and maybe your estate attorney, a good idea. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall explores the issue.

  • Palatine law firm turns to social media to build recognition Apr 22, 2013 7:17 AM
    Lawyers and social media. The words don't roll off the tongue as easily as, say, chocolate and ice cream or summer and vacation — unless you're talking with Colin Gilbert, founding partner at the law firm of Drost, Gilbert, Andrew & Apicella LLC in Palatine.

  • Why would a successful web retailer open a traditional store? Apr 8, 2013 12:14 PM
    After more than a dozen years successfully selling sunglasses on the Internet — not just sunglasses but such top-of-the-line brands as Porsche Design, Serengeti, Vuarnet, Bolle and Callaway Golf — Andy Hortatsos opened an eyewear store in downtown Glen Ellyn.

  • Outside advisors talk numbers, business intelligence, listening Mar 25, 2013 6:08 AM
    An outsider’s perspective doesn’t always lead to one of those “Eureka!” moments, but observing what others observe in the small business community can be helpful.

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