Archive for February, 2009

Traffic: Job One for Online Businesses »

The Issue:  Entrepreneurs come in all shapes and sizes, from Mom & Pop retail operations to independent professionals, manufacturers and, increasingly, developers of on-line businesses. This last group is the focus of this Issue of the Week.   What I Think: Although the nuts and bolts of online business vary widely, one thing is true […]


As SBOs, we may be done for the morning or the day or even the week, but we’re never really done.    I had a partner once in the Caribbean who believed that once the shelves were stocked, the ads placed and the doors open, the job was over.  (Obviously, I had made a bad […]

When Opportunity Is Just Around the Bend »

Don’t Cut Corners The Issue: When responding to opportunities, businesses typically have several decisions to make. Among them, the trade off between the prices they will ask for their new products or services (if any) and the cost of delivering those products and services at a profit. For a manufacturing business, however, there is a […]


If you go belly up during these challenging economic times, do not blame (A) the economy; (B) the government; or (C) bad luck.  In other words, do not roll over and play victim or, worse, sit up and beg for a handout. There is honest money to be made and there are genuine opportunities to […]

Stop Data Security Leaks »

Data security problems keep multiplying.  According to Paula Biewer, Fond du Lac, an independent associate with Prepaid Legal Fees,  “In 2005, the website at listed six pages of security problems.  Today,” she explained to me, “it has over 100 pages, and ID theft is the number one complaint.” The two biggest culprits, especially with […]

More Recession-Proofing Tips »

By Bill Willard Contributing Author The Issue:  Helping SBOs keep their heads above water during the recession has been a recurring theme on this and other Websites, as well as in newspapers, magazines and other media outlets for and about business owners.  Because every little bit helps–and you can never tell where your next great idea […]


As SBOs, risk comes with the territory.  And when it comes to business, if you’re not growing, you’re shrinking.  You can’t stand still.  So it is with personal growth. Example:  I just joined Toastmasters last fall.  Why?  Because, at 58, though I’m not bad on my feet, I know I can be better.  My brother, […]


Ladies and gentlemen, I spent an amazing Saturday roaming around Green Bay, Wisconsin, doing research.  I visited a number of small businesses, ate in an upscale restaurant filled with the lunch traffic, and drove by malls and store parking lots filled with cars.    And I talked to people.  My question — always — when […]

Economic Stimulus In the Wrong Hands »

By Bill Willard Contributing Author The Issue: The nation’s economy is in dire straits, but Congress, whose charge is fixing the problem, has demonstrated one thing: They’re not up to the job.  What I Think: As Ronald Reagan always maintained: The Federal government is not the solution, it’s the problem. indeed, the perfidity of many […]


I’ve always believed that if it weren’t for the employees and the customers, business would be a breeze!   Actually, I’m pretty good with the customers.  But I am the world’s worst boss.  Ask any of my former employees.  I was overbearing, tending to micro-manage, praised when I should have kicked butt, and kicked butt […]