Some Holiday Gifts for Entrepreneurs

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Happy Holidays! In the spirit of the giving season, we thought we would share some last-minute gift ideas for you or that special entrepreneur in your life. 

Get Lifetime Access To More Than 5,000 Adobe Training Videos
Valued at $500, you can snag this awesome gift for just $79 - but hurry! This special deal expires in 3 days. 

Instantly Expand Your MacBook's Storage With HyperDrive
If all your data reports and business plans are crowding your laptop's storage space, this tiny piece of equipment can easily take care of that. This discounted price of $29.99 ends in 2 days, so be sure to purchase while you can. 

Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg
Sandberg's empowering book can be the perfect stocking stuffer for both women and men! 

Shop Holiday: Gift Ideas For Young Professionals
From desk decor to a sweet Starbucks calendar, you're bound to find something just right for your busy office worker.

And don't forget all the customizable gifts, like cuff links, money clips, wallets, and purses! Places like Etsy and Shoppe By ScoutMob specialize in those types of gifts. Whatever you decide to get for your professional friend (or yourself), we hope you enjoy this holiday season. Cheers! 

Things to Think About Before Launching Your Business

From doing your research to choosing a business structure to hiring a staff, these articles can help make sure you're on top of your pre-launch checklist. 

What I Wish I Knew Before I Started My Own Business 
Nellie Akalp, CEO of CorpNet.com, shares some insights into what you should focus on in the early stages of forming your new company. 

Before Falling In Love With Your Great Idea, Find Out If Anybody Wants It 
Creating a startup takes time and money, so before you spend your precious resources, do your research and set your business up for success. 

How To Determine The Goals And Objectives of Your Business Plan
Having a solid business plan is essential in the early stages of your startup. If you're having trouble creating a clear strategy, ask yourself these questions. 

What other advice would you give to those in the pre-launch stage?

Make the Most Out of Your Business's Holiday Season

If your business sells any kind of product or service, then listen up! The holiday season is full of special sales and busy shoppers. Your business's holiday season should be a time of cheer - a period when you see increased sales and new shoppers that will hopefully become loyal customers. Check out these helpful articles to prepare your business for the holiday season. 

Transform Seasonal Shoppers Into Loyal Shoppers Year-Round
What's better than new customers? New customers who eventually turn into longtime buyers. 

How to Prepare Your Small Business's Technology for the Holiday Season
Make sure your e-commerce site can handle all the last-minute holiday shopping! 

Re-create the Magic of Manhattan's Holiday Windows: 5 Design Secrets for Small Retailers
Want to attract crowds to your store? There has never been a better time to go all out with those big, bright holiday lights and decor. 

What are other ways you're gearing up for the big shopping season? Happy Selling! 


 

Preparing Your Business for Thanksgiving Weekend

The Brooklyn Desks family wishes all of you a very happy and restful Thanksgiving holiday. But many of you busy entrepreneurs will be right back to work on Friday, especially this Friday in particular. That's right - Black Friday and Cyber Monday are quickly approaching, and if you're in the business of sales, you'd better be prepared! Here are two articles we found incredibly useful for those companies taking part in this weekend's shopping festivities: 

5 Tactics to Get Digitally Prepared for Black Friday Weekend
Black Friday is no longer strictly an in-store event. With almost every company opening its sales online, businesses are attracting even more customers and revenue. Check these tips out for turning online window shoppers into happy customers. 

5 Ways to Prepare Your Website for Cyber Monday
Some extra tips on continuing a strong online presence as we inch toward National Shopping Spree: Round Two! 

Have a wonderful (and lucrative) holiday, everyone! 

The Great Struggle: Balancing Personal With Professional

Anyone who works hard knows how difficult it is to balance personal life and work life. The old 9-5 rule is practically gone these days. It's not rare to find someone answering their work emails during movie time with the kids, and even stay-at-home parents - who literally have to live at their workplace - need some time to truly detach and relax. But what happens when workaholics finally have some free time on their hands? More often than not, they melt into the couch until it's time for another day at the office. And sometimes, couch time is needed; but at other times, it's just a wasted opportunity to make real use of our personal time. This personal neglect could lead to dips in relationships with friends, family, and even significant others. 

Being able to better manage your schedule - whether it's your work or personal - is key to succeeding in life and happiness. Take a look at the following articles for some guidance to get you on the right track. 

How To Be Productive And Still Have A Fun Weekend
Some great tips on how to make the most of your time off. As Professor Stew Friedman would say, go for the "four-way win". 

Forgo The To-Do List: Be More Productive With A Backward Schedule
Professor Cal Newport is a professor, father, author, blogger, and publisher. And he does NOT work past 5:30pm, nor does he work weekends. Listen up as the professor teaches you a thing or two about the pitfalls of to-do lists! 

We hope you can use this advice to better plan the rest of your week - and weekend. What other time management tips would you recommend for optimizing time off? 

An Entrepreneur's Life Hacks: Becoming a Morning Person

Whether you have a 9-5 or you're making your business idea a reality, chances are you can't afford to sleep in. As the old adage goes, time is money. And sometimes it may feel like there just aren't enough hours in a day. But what if you could wake up a bit earlier and use those extra minutes to get those emails out of the way so you can start working on what you love? And what if you could not only wake up earlier, but also wake up happier?

Jayson Demers and Hal Elrod give us some tips on how to do both.

5 Nighttime Routines of Successful Entrepreneurs
Here are some things you can do to make sure you're maximizing productivity (and time) at all hours of the day. 

It Only Takes Five Minutes To Become a Morning Person
Elrod gives some top notch advice on what to do so you can wake up with more excitement to start the day. (And they really do work!) 

Waking up with a positive mindset and extra time on your hands can change your entire day. It can even change your entire outlook on life. Give it a try, and let us know how it went! 

Tinder for Professionals: A New Way to Network?

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Welcome to the Digital Age. A time when people can become friends and lovers with the click of a button. But what about professional networking? Where does this traditionally conservative field fit into our digitally social world? True, websites like LinkedIn have always been a great way to connect coworkers, employers, and potential hires. But research shows that people are increasingly on the go, and sometimes, carrying even a MacBook Air is considered "too bulky". Cue smart phones and mobile apps.

As companies scramble for mobile app developers to keep up with the ever-changing digital landscape, one startup has taken the lead by applying the model of mobile dating to professional networking. Coffee, a mobile app that launched earlier this year, uses Tinder's swiping system for young professionals to connect. If users like what they see on a member's profile, they can swipe right, and if both parties are interested, they can chat and maybe even meet up for a cup of coffee. 

We applaud Coffee's innovative idea of using successful dating apps to help young people with their careers. It's efficient, it's useful, and it just makes sense. As new ways to connect emerge, why should professional networking be left behind? Just because millenials are not yet the professional veterans of their fields does not mean that the professional world should be restricted to its outdated, traditional forms of connecting. 

Now, don't get us wrong. Traditional, in-person networking will always have its place, but the ability to connect virtually should have some room to grow, too. After all, this is the Digital Age. 

What do you think about professional relationships following in the steps of mobile dating apps?

More info on Coffee and its founders can be found here in the original article by WeWork. 

Keep Your Head Up: How to Run A Business and Be Happy

Happy Friday! Here at Brooklyn Desks, we strongly support those who do what they love. But we also know that running a business has its ups and downs, and enjoying your dream job may be difficult at times. So, we thought we'd give you some words of encouragement for when things don't go your way. 

  1. Keep Hearing No? Here's How to Not Take It Personally
    The road to success is always paved with no's before we stumble upon a yes. Rejection can hurt.. or it can be a blessing in disguise. An entrepreneur tells us how being told no shouldn't keep us from getting to that yes! 
     
  2. 50 Inspirational Quotes for Startups and Entrepreneurs
    Uplifting quotes from some of history's most influential people. These will be sure to keep you going when you're feeling down. 
     
  3. Top 32 Quotes Every Entrepreneur Should Live By 
    We can't get enough of these motivational quotes. They're just too good!

When life and stress get in the way, we hope these words of wisdom will help remind you why you chose to chase your dream in the first place. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! 

 

Bedtime Reads for Budding Entrepreneurs

Are you a new or well-seasoned entrepreneur? Are you looking to find out more about startup culture? Or do you just want an inspiring bed-time read? Well, look no further because with this collection of creative and business-centric books, there's bound to be something that piques your inner entrepreneur. 

  1. 14 Books Every Entrepreneur Should Read in '14
    From venture capitalism to personal development, John Rampton covers an awesome list of books that can help any entrepreneur establish and launch a business. 
     
  2. 8 Books Every New Entrepreneur Should Read
    Forbes collected some books catered specifically to those just starting out in the startup scene. If you're feeling overwhelmed as you begin to make your way, take a deep breath and relax. You can find some very wise guidance in one of these books. 
     
  3. 7 Unconventional Books for Entrepreneurs
    And if you're just looking for an entertaining bedtime book, check these bad boys out. Who knows? You may even wake up with a renewed outlook on life and some new habits for self-improvement! 
     
  4. The Year's Best Books for Female Entrepreneurs
    Who doesn't need a jolt of motivation or some tips on managing our day-to-days? These truly inspiring works were written by women, but they sure aren't restricted to women. Everyone you know could benefit from these books - including yourself! 

Guidance and inspiration are only a few pages away. Whether you're thinking about your new business plan or pining for better work habits, rest assured that there's a book for you. Have you read anything recently to inspire your career? 

Free Resources Every Startup Should Know About

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Startups often find themselves lacking in resources - especially money. This could lead to roadblocks because they aren't able to hire web developers or business consultants to help grow their business. Fortunately, free online resources for entrepreneurs are on the rise, so anyone can save money and develop more professional and technical skills - a total win-win. Check these sites for a chance to save more and learn more. 

  1. 15 Free Online Learning Sites Every Entrepreneur Should Visit
    These resources can teach you valuable tools that range from coding and search engine optimization to business planning and budgeting. 
     
  2. 4 Must-Have Marketing Software Tools for Your Startup
    Although not all of these options are free, they're incredibly useful if you're looking for a little boost in your company's marketing or operations. 
     
  3. 10 Free Online Resources for Business Tech
    And if you're in the business tech world, here are a couple places that could be of great help when you're trying to learn how to build an app or if you just want to make the most out of your Facebook page. 

Free stuff is always wonderful. But being able to pick up new skills to bolster your company's success at no cost - well, that is downright priceless. Are there any other free resources you would like to add?