If you are putting together a tight staff for your small business, it's important to have the right mix of employees you can count on. Of course, each member of your team needs to be well-suited for their specific job at hand, but it's key to have a potpourri of personalities and skill sets to create a workplace ambiance that jives while saving you time and money. With these 5 types of employees on the roll, you'll be secure in knowing the job will get done and your small business will become a well-oiled machine that will get better and better with every move these people make both individually and as a team.
You may be the boss, but it's important to have another person on the team who is a born leader too. Investing a little more in someone who's well-seasoned and can teach other staff members the ropes is highly valuable for the bottom line. The "showman" will be able to take charge, yet offer advice and direction to the rest of the group with strategies that have worked before. Think of the showman as you're #2 guy or gal, so if you're able to spend a little more salary-wise to get this person on board, the payoff will be worth it. Entrepreneur backs this up, "Having an employee that wants to share their knowledge with others can take a load off small-business owners' minds. It can eliminate the extra cost of hiring outside trainers and offers a layer of institutional knowledge that only people on the inside of a company possess." According to Salary.com, "Leaders are excellent for successfully taking charge of projects or teams. Talent is one thing, but you need someone who can harness that talent and manage it to achieve the best results." Let the showman show you what they've got, and he or she will help the team rise to the top.
Whether an intern or newbie to your general field or the workforce as a whole, it's always a plus to have someone on your team who's eager to learn and prove they've got the chops to get ahead. The "sponge" is always ready to listen and apply what they've absorbed to good use for the company. As long as there is passion and drive, the sponge is one of the best types of employees to have on the force, especially if they grow with the company. When you have invested in a person who's craving knowledge and not trying to outdo the others just for the sake of it, you've got a diamond in the rough on board. This person may help you out financially if they've started at the bottom, but if they help make the company stronger, it will pay out for you both in the end. As Entrepreneur notes, "They want to continue learning, whether it's on the job, through extra training courses or even graduate school. This type of attitude is something that can rub off on other employees and perhaps inspire them to further their education in some way." When the whole team's inspired to be the best version of themselves, you're bound to achieve.
The Wearer of Many Hats
While having dedicated employees who are experts in their area of specialty is crucial, there's always room for that special someone who's great at lots of things and is willing to pitch in when and where it's needed. Versatility is a hot commodity for a small business thanks to the problem-solving capacities and usefulness the "wearer of many hats" beholds. Bosses can save time and money by putting their minds toward the sweeping business needs and let this person handle the minutia of day-to-day necessities. Entrepreneur confirms, "People who can dabble in several different areas of the company – pinch-hitters – can be immensely valuable. Small-business owners can become overwhelmed at the sheer amount of work to do at various points throughout the year, with limited staff to tap into to get it all done. So, with others to juggle some of the duties, owners can focus on growth and strategy."
When a bunch of people are working for a small company, things can get rough. There is often so much to do, and at times with limited resources. Morale can dip without that perky person keeping things cheerful and in perspective. Sometimes the company owner is swamped and cannot give that 'pat on the back' to everyone for every milestone reached. While the "cheerleader" may not make or save money directly, by keeping the team energized, production will stay on track and positivity will prevail, making employees happier with their atmosphere and willing to go the extra mile. And this will make you money in the end.
The Creative One
In our overly technological world, "techies" are highly sought after for all types of small businesses, and for good reason. Every company wants to stay ahead of the curve on what's new and trendy for plugged-in consumers. That said, don't leave out the creative types. These out-of-the-box thinkers can help make your company stand out from the rest with innovative ideas and interesting outlooks on projects and plans. As Salary.com says, "Companies need creative individuals to assist them in navigating the ever-evolving world of technology. Companies can't afford to rest on their laurels these days, and the innovators are the ones who propel everyone else forward." So be sure to blend your team with those who use different sides of their brain for smart ideas for your company. It only takes one brilliant idea to make your small business explode!
Make sure your small business staff includes these 5 prominent types and you'll be covered when it comes to your demanding needs as you navigate through new steps in the business world.
Sometimes there is no choice—a home needs to be sold in the winter.
Spring may be the most popular time to put your house on the market, but homes do sell in the colder months. With fewer houses available, your home may be someone's only choice when house hunting in your neighborhood. As your neighbors hold out until spring, you'll already be done and ready to shop for your next house!
Here are a few tips for selling a home in the winter to get you on the right track.
Keep Paths Safe and Landscaping Fresh
Landscaping is the last thing on a homeowner's mind in the winter. Everything was cut back in the fall and may now be covered in snow. Still, take a walk around the house and yard to check everything out. Branches may have fallen from heavy snow, leaving a mess in the yard. Keep everything neat and tidy.
The last thing you need is a potential buyer slipping on the ice-covered walk in front of your house. Buyers often consider those moments bad omens, and this can affect their decisions. Shovel, snow blow, spread salt—do whatever you have to do to keep the driveway and walking paths clear, and don't forget the porch and deck.
Make the Inside Warm and Cozy
In cold weather, buyers won't spend a lot of time examining a home's exterior. Instead, impress them with the inside by creating an atmosphere which causes them to want to move in.
When there's time, leave wintery types of snacks and drinks, such as hot cocoa and cookies, available on a table during showings. This gives your home a welcoming feel to buyers.
Light the fireplace (if you have one) for a lovely ambience and set your thermostat to a comfortable setting. A warm home in the winter is much more appealing than a chilly one.
Make Your Home Less Personal
Understandably, this can be a tough thought for homeowners. After all, you've spent years creating memories in your home. To buyers, though, they need to picture it as their own. Too much personality makes that difficult.
It's always important to stage your home in a way that makes it look clean, comfortable, and move-in ready. Don't feel offended by the idea of taking family pictures down and replacing them with generic décor. This will help your home sell faster by helping buyers envision their own things there.
Cleanliness and Maintenance
Clean, clean, and clean some more. Make appliances, counters, and floors shine. No matter how old your home is, it needs to feel like new to potential buyers. If you aren't into dusting, now is the time to try. Don't forget window coverings that might need washing.
Be prepared ahead of time for home inspections by taking care of maintenance now. HVAC systems, plumbing, and electrical should all be up to code and running smoothly.
Use these tips for selling a home in the winter, exercise patience during the slower months, and your home will sell before you know it.
Entering your 20s means you'll quickly need to learn how to navigate the world of personal finances, much of which you probably didn't learn in college or high school courses.
Without any previous lessons on finances, it can be challenging to know where to start. Follow this guide as we outline the financial decisions you'll need to make in your 20s.
Setting a Budget
The first step to being a fiscally responsible young adult is setting a budget. Your budget will determine many future financial decisions, from where you can live to what splurges you can make. Look at the expenses you currently owe every month and your projected income to determine how much you should be spending on bills, daily expenses, etc.
Getting rid of your debt as early as possible is a critical step for newly independent 20-year-olds. However, some may not be able to get rid of debt as soon as they hope. Once again, look at your budget, then decide if you'd like to put more toward tackling debt now or pay your loans as they come.
While you may be able to hold onto your parents' insurance until 26, you'll have to choose your own plans sooner or later. From health insurance to renter's and car insurance, you shouldn't skip an opportunity to cover yourself in the case of an accident. Find a provider and plan you're comfortable with, and get your coverage as soon as possible.
Saving for a Rainy Day
Navigating how to save is another critical financial decision you'll have to make in your 20s. Living paycheck to paycheck is not a sustainable course of action. Even putting a small portion of your wages into a savings account can make a big difference—especially if an emergency you didn't prepare for occurs.
Starting To Invest
Investing is a scary topic for young adults, but it's a great way to build wealth. Starting to invest as a young adult will set you up for success on your long-term financial plan. However, be sure to conduct research before jumping into the market to decide when, where, and how much you'd like to invest.
Your 20s are an optimal time to learn and grow. One area of life you'll undoubtedly learn a lot about is managing finances. Use this guide to help you get started on the path to becoming a fiscally responsible adult.
Tax deductions can be tricky to understand if you're new to the finance world.
One of the biggest sources of confusion is knowing what you can and can't deduct from your taxes. Deductions can be a massive financial boon for a lot of people, yet not everyone files for them correctly. This causes people to miss out on money that should be theirs. We'll go over some of the most common tax deductions that are overlooked, so you don't get shortchanged when Tax Day comes.
When you start regularly giving to charity, even if the donations are small, you'll want to start getting itemized receipts for your donations. These receipts will help you write off these charitable contributions on your taxes. You can even write off supplies that you bought for use in a charitable cause or any miles you drove on your car while in service to a charity. Make those donations to the Purple Heart Pickup with an open heart, but make sure you get your deduction on top of that.
Student Loan Interest Payments
Student loans take up a significant amount of a lot of people's money. If you're one of these people, make sure that you get a deduction on the amount of interest you paid off in the last year. What's important to remember is that even if you aren't someone's dependent, you can write off the money someone else gave you to pay for said student loans. If someone else helped you pay off part of your loan, don't think that means you can't still get a deduction on that sum.
Child and Dependent Care Credit
If you have a reimbursement account through your job that pays for child or dependent care, you might be forgiven for forgetting about this particular tax credit. However, you can use these funds for a tax credit if you file for them correctly. This is hugely important because this is an opportunity to receive a full tax credit, not just a deduction. You're losing money you could be directly receiving if you don't file for this credit.
Jury Pay Given to Your Employer
A lesser-known tax deduction that often gets overlooked is the money you can deduct from jury pay you gave to your employer. It may not be the most exciting thing to come out of jury duty, especially after handing over any money you receive to your employer, but you do get to deduct however much money your employer made you hand over after you finished jury duty.
Credit for Saving
While this credit is more for people that are working part-time or for those that have a retired spouse, you can get a tax credit for contributing to a 401(k) or another retirement savings plan. This is also a great incentive for those that are just starting out in their careers and need another reason to start saving for the future.