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From Where I Sit: January 2015

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Happy New Year! Welcome to 2015 and to our new "From Where I Sit" newsletter! We are now offering this extended monthly edition which is only available to our clients and subscribers.

Each monthly newsletter will cover a variety of topics from national/local news stories that could affect you and your business to tips for running a successful business. If you have anything you would like to read about - please do not hesitate to send over suggestions!

In this month's newsletter, you will find:

 


The Tax Increase Prevention Act

Last year, 2014, ended with much debate and discussion regarding the future of several tax breaks which small businesses have come to depend on. After several permanent provisions were proposed and rejected, the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014 was finally signed into law on December 19, 2014.

For the most part, this highly anticipated legislation only extends the expiration of numerous 2013 provisions through the end of 2014, and is hardly the certainty for which taxpayers were hoping. However, this act did revive several important provisions for the upcoming 2014 tax filing season..... tbd

 


Quiz Yourself on Your Business Progress

Successful entrepreneurs don't let their businesses push them along.  They take ownership of their business, fording ahead instead of reacting to events.  To elvaluate whether you're taking enough initiative, try this quiz, adapted from the Carly Goldsmith Coaching website.

Give yourself 1 point for Yes, and 0 for No:

____ Do you have a plan for your business that you've reassessed and revised in the past 18 months?

____ Have you identified three to five new skills to develop this year?

____ Can your articulate your personal brand?

____ Do you have a personal set of advisors, including coaches and mentors, to support your in your business?

____ Do you have a current stretch assignment to work on?

____ Do you regularly evaluate your value, needs, strengths, skills, interests/dislikes, preferences, and weaknesses?

____ Do you periodically analyze your business' environment for changes and trends, and examine how those changes will affect your career?

____ Do you ask for feedback from your mentor, or colleagues?

____ Do you know what skills you need to aquire to move ahead in your business - and do you have a plan to master to them?

____ Do you choose projects based on what will help you advance in your business and turn down those that won't?

Scoring

  • 8-10:  You're doing what you need to do to succeed in your chosen business.  Keep it up!
  • 5-7:  You're on your way, but you need to do some work in order to maintain your progress
  • 0-4:  You need to get going.  A coach, or some reading on your own, may help motivate you to start moving forward.

 


Tips for a Successful 2015

Success is based on how productively you use the time available to you every day.  To make the most of every minute, follow these simple rules:

Use A Day Planner

Whether you rely on technology or old-fashioned pencil and paper, plan everyday for maximum efficiency.  Start with a daily to-do list for both short- and long-term projects, carry over unfinished business to the next day, and check your list frequently so nothing important drops of your radar.

Set Priorities

Don't just work tasks randomly.  Identify your most important goals, your secondary objectives, and routine items that your can't ignore.  Plan your day around the work that supports your top goals, moving on to the other projects when time permits.  Always ask yourself, "What's the most important and productive task I can be working on right now?".

Eliminate Procrastination

This can be tough, but it's what separates the truly successful people from the also-rans:  Don't waste time on nonessentials.  Get quickly to the point in every conversation, and move on as soon as your finished.  Plan your work, but don't over prepare.  Decide what you need to accomplish, and then do it.  Even if you don't enjoy certain tasks, think of how relieved you'll feel once you're finished.

 


My Forecast for Houston's Economy in 2015

tdb

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