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Archive By Section - Business Columns


It takes timing to succeed with a home business

In last week's column, we talked about beating the recession by creating your own business from home.

August 15, 2008 | By Dr. Maureen Stephenson | Business Columns


So, you need income?

You have worked hard all your life to accumulate a pool of retirement assets. Now, or at some time in the near future, you will want to turn all or a portion of that pool of assets into a stream of income that will last as long as you live. It won't be easy with the ups and downs of the economy, which is normal, but currently we have to be more concerned for the additional problems caused with our energy costs and the financial markets fiasco.

August 14, 2008 | By Jim Lentini | Business Columns


New developments in capital gain, property taxes and other benefits

Editor's Note: The Friday business columns known as Business Law will now be known as It's the Law.

Capital gain relief for widows and widowers

August 14, 2008 | By Gina Macdonald | Business Columns


Does your business have a prospecting plan?

I read with interest an article on the front page of The Signal on Monday. Several local business owners were interviewed and quoted about declining sales revenue, a reduction in customer buying and the impact of increasing costs on their businesses.

August 12, 2008 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


How to recession-proof your life

It seems that every time we turn on the news these days we hear an endless litany of big corporations that are closing their doors, thousands of workers being laid off across the country, more jobs being outsourced and everybody losing money (unless you're in oil). The unemployment figures that politicians spout as going down, is only going down because laid-off workers are falling off the unemployment list after using up their 26 weeks. But don't let this discourage you, because it may be to your advantage.

Working from home is the new way forward! Think like an ...

August 08, 2008 | By Dr. Maureen Stephenson | Business Columns


Components of a basic living trust package

In previous articles, I have discussed the advantages of using living trusts as an estate planning tool. It is extremely important that your estate plan is drafted only after a personal consultation with an attorney so that the plan can be customized according to your specific situation and desires.

August 06, 2008 | By Randall D. Armour | Business Columns


Now marks time to ramp up marketing efforts

It would be nice to believe that every organization is a proponent of continuous marketing (which means marketing in both strong and slowing economies), but not everyone has done so. Many of the organizations that did not market when times were good are now suffering. Others that should know better are becoming nervous as the bad news of the economy is reported and so these firms are cutting back on marketing and other expenditures.

When times are good, and business is plentiful, businesses are often so busy they do not have time to market. They are busy taking care of ...

August 05, 2008 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


Cross my palm with debit cards

Cross my palm with debit cards - not silver!

While the financial gurus are wringing their hands over the rise in credit card debt, consumers are going their merry way with their debit cards. The use of debit cards has increased more than 50 percent in just seven years, and banks see profit in the trend. They're cranking up the frequent flier and other rewards to encourage debit card use.

August 01, 2008 | Dr. Maureen Stephenson | Business Columns


Who will care for your children if something happens to you?

If you and your spouse pass away leaving minor children, have you selected someone to serve as their guardian? Have you chosen someone to manage their finances?

July 31, 2008 | By Robert Mansour | Business Columns


Only 21 days to a superior organization

Day one: Make sure your organization has tests and yardsticks to measure performance. Are you measuring the most important things or just things you have always measured?

July 29, 2008 | By Kenneth W. Keller | Business Columns


Work your sales process to succeed

Everyone would agree that a structured sales method is needed for maximum efficiency, yet we all know of companies that ignore this fact. Without a set of steps or structure, sales are lost or ineffective so the process in use has to be assessed.

July 25, 2008 | By Dr. Maureen Stepehnson | Business Columns


The perfect storm

I recently attended an investment seminar and received the following information which is taken from a paper written about personal finance by two professors of finance and insurance, David Babbel and Craig

July 24, 2008 | By Jim Lentini | Business Columns


Liabilities and the HOA board member

The Los Angeles Times recently ran an article that suggested personal liability against a Home Owner Association ("HOA") board member for giving legal advice without having a license to practice law and various blogs are now available for homeowners to ask for help and/or criticize their board members.

July 24, 2008 | By Brian Tinkham | Business Columns


Thought-provoking questions for top executives

What is your organization's overall vision? Where are you going to be in three to five years?

July 22, 2008 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


Decision flow in a buy-sell transaction

Both the buyer and seller have the same question in mind: What is this business worth? This is where information becomes king! You can never have too much information when making a decision like buying or selling your small business.

Most people see the worth of a business as the total value of equipment and fixtures, inventory, buildings and land. These are definitely important, but the sum of these values does not equal the value of the business. Continuing with our buyer and seller from last week, Bill probably paid a fir price for equipment, fixtures, and the like, but ...

July 18, 2008 | By Dr. Maureen Stephenson | Business Columns


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Articles by Section - Business Columns


Ken Keller: Unmasking the mediocre company

Books like "Built to Last," "The Breakthrough Company," and "Good to Great" were written to help business people improve the companies they own, lead and run.

March 02, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


Nancy Starczyk: Upbeat outlook for housing

The housing market in the Santa Clarita Valley started the New Year tentatively, yet encouraging news abounds as the traditional Spring home buying season approaches.

February 26, 2014 | By Nancy Starczyk Real Estate Talk | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Improving effectiveness

If you wonder why your sales people aren't more productive, aren't making enough presentations and are slow to close deals, it might not be the industry you are in, your location or the economy not cooperating.

February 23, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


John Milburn: Keeping SCV strong

According to the recent news release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics the US economy added 113,000 jobs in January 2014 and, "…job gains occurred in construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, and mining…Employment in manufacturing increased in January (+21,000)…Manufacturing added an average of 7,000 jobs per month in 2013."

February 19, 2014 | By John Milburn Entrepreneur's Corner | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Hubris is a disease that kills

Years ago a major manufacturer hired a research firm to conduct a survey of the cultural climate of the company.

February 16, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


Nancy Starczyk: Information for buyers

Under the federal Ability-to-Repay rules that went into effect Jan. 10, lenders received guidelines on the type of financial information homebuyers must provide lenders when seeking a loan.

February 12, 2014 | By Nancy Starczyk Real Estate Talk | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Leaders set tone

Research suggests that employees do not leave because of the company they work for, but they quit because of their manager.

February 09, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food For Business Owners | Business Columns


Pete Bellas: What’s the forecast?

What is our fascination with forecasts? Are they really helpful and how can we use them for planning purposes?

February 05, 2014 | By Pete Bellas Entrepreneur's Corner | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Meet your objective in 2014

At the end of the first month of the year, are your objectives for 2014 being met? Have the results versus your goals left a gap? Are you worried that what happened or what didn't happen in January can spread to February? Or March?

February 01, 2014 | By Ken Keller | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Move always forward, never backwards

In May, 1976 I had just finished what I first thought was my junior year of college. When I put a pencil to things, I discovered I was not 12 months away from graduation, but closer to two years.

January 26, 2014 | By Ken Keller Brain Food for Business Owners | Business Columns


Joe Klocko: Criteria for business success

When you think of California do words like innovative, leading-edge and trendy come to mind? A place where new ideas first take root before they become woven into the very fabric of the national culture and industrial base before becoming recognized around the world as being uniquely "American". If so, you may be surprised to learn that in one area, the critical business process of selecting and hiring new employees, California is lagging behind the rest of the country.

January 22, 2014 | By Joe Klocko Entrepreneur's Corner | Business Columns


Ken Keller: Is the next level for you?

I recently conversed with the owner of a profitable company. She was interested in addressing some issues so she could return her attention to growing the business.

January 19, 2014 | By Ken Keller For The Signal | Business Columns


Nancy Starczyk:New rules aim for safer loans

Federal rules that went into effect Friday, Jan. 10, provide homeowners and consumers shopping for a home mortgage new rights and greater protection from harmful lending practices, while also probably slowing the pace of home price increases and forging a stronger, more stable housing market.

January 15, 2014 | By Nancy Starczyk Real Estate Talk | Business Columns


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