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Archive By Section - Business Columns


Businesses get new bite from COBRA changes

Hidden in the voluminous American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 - otherwise known as the Stimulus Bill passed by Congress last month - is a provision that may prove to be a dangerous trap for many American businesses.

April 17, 2009 | By Brian E. Koegle It's The Law | Business Columns


Kenneth W. Keller: Six steps to better your business

It's easy to be beaten down by the constant trumpeting of how bad the economy is, and it's just as easy to feel overwhelmed by opportunities. There seems to be no middle ground.

April 15, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Jim Lentini: Positioning yourself for market recovery

No one knows when the market will reach the bottom, or whether it already has. A few good indicators of the market moving positively are that the S&P 500 gained 8.8 percent (total return) in March 2009 - the best monthly performance since October 2002 - and the fact that total capitalization of the U.S. stock market increased by $700 billion during the month of March to $9.4 trillion.

April 14, 2009 | James Lentini | Business Columns


Gina G. MacDonald: Tools for caregivers

The Family Caregiver Alliance has compiled a list of practical tools and resources designed to address the needs of informal caregivers and the professionals supporting them. While a plethora of online information exists, specific tools and resources had not been gathered into one collection where professionals and caregivers alike could quickly and easily access them - until now.

April 11, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Maureen Stephenson: Handle potential billing snafus face-to-face

An entrepreneur called me the other day for some brainstorming. It seems that he discovered his company had been billing a client half of what he should have been billed. This client had been difficult in the past and the entrepreneur wasn't looking forward to dealing with him. He knew he had to do something though, and his partner felt it had to be done in a face-to-face meeting with the client. They felt the client had to know what was going on before getting revised pricing and a bill for the oversight.

April 11, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Julie M. Sturgeon: College tuition and tax credits

In February, Congress enacted the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which includes a new $2,500 college tax credit for 2009, 2010 and possibly beyond. Your family may have not qualified for earlier college tax credits, but it just might for this one.

April 09, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Kenneth Keller: Making your balance sheet stronger

Those who have passed Accounting 101 understand that business owners should focus on building the net worth of their business by adding to their asset base while reducing liabilities. The difference is owner's equity, the value of the business.

April 08, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Jim Lentini: Why consider in-service withdrawal?

Most investment options offered by company-sponsored retirement plans are designated for the accumulation phase of retirement, and not the income phase.

April 07, 2009 | James Lentini | Business Columns


Maureen Stephenson: Grab the low-hanging fruit on the sales branch

I like to call "referrals" the low-hanging fruit on the tree of sales because they are a reward for a job well done.

April 04, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Kenneth W. Keller: A lesson in responding to adversity

Have you heard story about the business owner who went home to visit her mother?

April 01, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Jim Lentini: Planning out your retirement income

Many Americans, especially those in the retirement red zone, are facing a new reality regarding their retirement. With most Americans experiencing declines in their 401(k) plans and retirement portfolios as a result of the capital market turmoil over the last several months, many ask, "What do I do now?"

March 31, 2009 | By Jim Lentini | Business Columns


Maureen Stephenson: Now’s the time to recession-proof your skill set

Now that all the debate about whether we're in a recession or not is over, it's time to keep business afloat.

March 28, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Michael S. Little: Protect your business from lawsuits in tough times

The headlines are everywhere. Corporate layoffs and downsizing have become commonplace among companies of all sizes and in varying industries. From Lehman Brothers to Coca-Cola to Borders, companies are adjusting to the declining financial market by cutting jobs.

March 27, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Randall D. Armour: Your options in naming a beneficiary of your IRA

Naming the correct beneficiary of an IRA allows the possibility of tax-deferred growth for decades and can turn even a modest IRA into millions of dollars for your spouse, children, grandchildren or other beneficiaries. Below, I will discuss the basic options available when choosing an IRA beneficiary.

March 26, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


Kenneth Keller: Seven business questions you should be able to answer

As the owner of a business, are you ready to be asked and truthfully answer these questions when asked by an employee?

March 25, 2009 | Signal Staff | Business Columns


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Articles by Section - Business Columns


Joe Klocko: Finding the ideal employee

Now that I have your interest, I'll try to let you down gently.

July 09, 2014 | By Joe Klocko Business Matters | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Advice for a better second half

Last week marked the end of the first half of the calendar year. It seems like January was just last week.

July 06, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


Janice France-Pettit: Tips for growing a family

Starting or growing a family can be an exciting milestone in one's life. But as most experienced parents will tell you, your priorities are likely to change, and along with these changes come new expenses and responsibilities,

June 25, 2014 | By Janice France-Pettit Union Bank | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Advice given, heard and ignored

Being a trusted advisor is a place of honor. When you reach a certain stage in life, you are compensated not for what you do but for what you know.

June 22, 2014 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


Nancy Starczyk: Student debt hurts housing

With student loan debt nationwide at an estimated $1.2 trillion, homeownership for many recent and past graduates is a distant dream.

June 18, 2014 | By Nancy Starczyk Real Estate Talk | Business Columns


The conversation you really need to have

Throughout the years at the Advisory Board meetings I facilitate, I've heard a fair amount of laughter and grumbling from the business people who participate.

June 14, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


Carl Kanowsky: Employees moving could cost you

Jim, president of the top local IT company, came by the other day. He was not happy. He'd just been served with a complaint, alleging that he'd breached a new employee's contract, had wrongfully terminated her, and was guilty of breach of promissory estoppel (whatever that is?).

June 11, 2014 | By Carl Kanowsky It's the law | Business Columns


Profitability Matters, but Not To Everyone

The bottom line, the profitability of a company, should matter to every employee but many owners tend to keep this information private. Owners then complain when profits are thin.

June 09, 2014 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


Hilltop Homes Preferred by Luxury Buyers

Even in a state with hundreds of miles of beautiful, sandy beaches, luxury home buyers in California preferred hilltop homes over ocean-front properties by a margin of four to one.

June 03, 2014 | By Nancy Starczyk | Business Columns


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