Business Posts

End-of-Year To-Do List for Small Business Owners

Don’t let the hustle and bustle of the holiday season cause you to forget about your business. Crossing these items off your to-do list before the end of the year will help you not only close out 2018 but also get off to a good start in 2019.

Accounting

  • Generate a complete financial report that includes a profit and loss report, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. If your profits are higher than expected, consider making some large purchases for which you can record depreciation. (Check with your accountant and review depreciation rules first.)
  • Reconcile accounts receivable. Review your list of unpaid invoices and payment owed for work already completed and try to collect on them by the end of the year.
  • Schedule a meeting with your accountant and/or tax preparer.

Administration

  • Evaluate last year’s goals and set new ones. Use the information to plan for the upcoming year, including financial goals, budgeting, and staffing, as well as updating your business plan.
  • Make a list of the year’s accomplishments (and don’t forget to share them with your employees!).
  • Conduct an inventory count and update your records if needed.

I.T.

  • Back up your data and contacts (and make sure your employees do the same).
  • Audit your website. Go through your site and click every link. It’s also a good idea to send yourself a message from the “contact us” form and call the 800 number to make sure it works.

Human Resources/Payroll

  • Decide if you’ll offer year-end or other bonuses to employees. Distributing them in December versus January has tax implications because it affects the profits you report.
  • Check payroll and verify benefits and 1099 information. Identify any issues or corrections that need to be made before the year’s end and look for fringe benefits you’ll need to report on your W-2s.

If 2019 is the year you want to start or grow your business, why not add “join NaperLaunch” to your to-do list? In addition to coworking space, mentoring, and access to the library’s business resources and technology, we also offer the NaperLaunch Academy. The January 2019 cohort is forming now!

Posted: 
Thursday, November 29, 2018 - 09:30

Update Your Skills with Lynda.com

Naperville Public Library provides access to many digital resources, but a key one to update and learn new skills is Lynda.com. Lynda.com is an online learning platform that contains thousands of streaming videos that can help anyone learn business software, technology and creative skills.

Access is free for Naperville Public Library cardholders and easy to use. Just log in with a library card number/username and PIN.

After signing in users can search for specific applications such as MS Excel, MS Word or browse through a broad collection of videos using the menu. Access the Business collections by going to Library > Business > and choose a topic.

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The available business skills courses include learning how to sell into specific industries, how to use a business coach and how to consult other businesses. There are over 500 courses in the Business Skills category alone!

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Lynda.com offers transcripts of all videos, downloading for offline access, and access via downloadable apps on all of the major platforms – check it out today!

Posted: 
Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 12:00

Take Advantage of the Small Business Resource Center

Whether starting a new venture or growing a current business, entrepreneurs need access to information and planning tools to help them achieve their goals. Small Business Resource Center covers the major areas of starting and operating a business, including planning, financing, accounting, taxes, management, human resources and marketing.

This online resource brings together hundreds of sample business plans and the content of 300 small business journals. The content now also includes a wide range of other media and sources:

  • Audio—Listen to or download podcasts and radio shows.
  • Video—Watch videos from CriticalMention, Inc., Press, Inc. and other providers.
  • News—Find content from over 120 local newspapers.
  • Directories—Locate listings for thousands of trade associations, consulting organizations, trade shows, etc.
  • Glossary—Define key business-specific terms for quick reference.
  • EBooks—Browse thousands of topical overviews from over 80 small business reference eBooks from Gale, Wiley, and other publishers.
  • Websites—Access vetted, authoritative and topically relevant links from outside sources.
  • Legal forms—Link directly to small business forms available through Gale LegalForms.

Small Business Resource Center is a comprehensive and useful source for entrepreneurs. You can access it here.

Posted: 
Monday, October 22, 2018 - 12:15