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weird quirks that reinforces the importance of planning for the unexpected. I’m not planning to lose my card, but if I do, I’ve saved that number in my Google Drive. All I’ll need to do is go to an internet cafe to access it. I share important information with my wife and my team for the same reason. People never want to think about it, but if something were to happen to me, I wouldn’t want to leave them scrambling to find important documents and passwords. I create In Case of Emergency (ICE) sheets for my wife and team. I have designated links to these that I share with my wife so she can access the essential information should she need to — information like tax ID numbers, insurance information, and important account information. With the team, I share social media information and passwords related to our business. Google Drive and Google Sheets are some of my favorite tools for storing and sharing information. I can easily organize and share documents in my Drive. Plus, when you create documents in a cloud, you don’t have to create them every time. They become a living document that you can update as needed. I’m also a fan of using checklists to keep track of what needs to happen before I leave. They help me organize tasks, like setting the auto-response for my email and letting my bank know I’ll be out of the country. On this trip, I made the choice to not take my laptop because I wanted to tune into my friends and the experiences we shared. While I can do a lot to prepare, the truth is this: A lot of life is out of our hands. Eventually, you have to take a deep breath and let go. From the business side, a lot happens organically that you can’t plan for. But there are vital systems you can put in place to feel as prepared as possible. Good communication with your team, clients, and family is the best way to set them up for success while you’re away.
DIALING INTO VACATION MODE BY PROPERLY PLANNING BEFOREHAND
In early December, I got to go on the trip of a lifetime with a group of my best friends. These are guys I grew up with — we went to summer camp together, later worked at the same camp together, went to college together, and were in each other’s weddings. But until this trip, we hadn’t gotten together as a group for 15 years. Isn’t it ridiculous how time flies? When one of my buddies suggested we all take a trip to Iceland, I knew it was a unique opportunity to reconnect and catch up with these important people in my life. Of course, after the initial excitement of the trip wore off, the reality of everything I needed to do before I left set in. I knew it was time to get organized and put systems in place so I could feel good about leaving — and help my team and family feel good about it, too. We’re hardwired to do things at the last minute, but this habit is way too stressful. Instead of being in the moment on your trip, you’re thinking about everything you left unfinished or worrying about something you forgot. Something I’ve always found interesting is the placement of the number to call if you lose your credit card. You know where that number is? On the back of the card. If you lose your card, you don’t have that number. It’s one of those
How do you prepare for a big trip? I’d love to hear your suggestions.
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Have you started marketing to Generation Z yet? You should be. The oldest members of this generation — usually defined as people born during the mid-1990s to early 2000s — are starting to enter the workforce. By 2020, around 40 percent of consumer buying power will come from Gen Z. Companies need to think about how to reach them — preferably without making the same mistakes they made when marketing to millennials. LEARN WHERE YOUR AUDIENCE IS AT, AND WHY Gen Z grew up in an internet-focused world, but that doesn’t mean you can reach them through Facebook or email. Younger social media users gravitate to video-based platforms like YouTube or TikTok. On these apps, content feels more “real” because it is made by users for users. This preference shapes their buying habits. A survey from Business Insider found that only 49 percent of Gen Zers shop online once a month, a steep decline from the 74 percent of millennials who regularly make online purchases. Fifty-eight percent of the Gen Zers surveyed said they preferred brick-and-mortar shopping because they “wanted to see and feel the product.” DON’T BE ‘HIP’ There have been countless embarrassing attempts to get “on the level” with millennials, from a pizza company MARKET TO GEN Z WITHOUT REPEATING PAST MISTAKES Entrepreneurs might be the worst vacationers. It comes from the right place — you’re passionate about your business and enjoy working to make it successful. It’s also what makes it so hard to step away. Like Scott shared on the cover, taking a vacation and truly disconnecting when you run a small business is challenging, but it’s also necessary for your health and well-being. Overcome the Catch-22 by implementing these strategies when you book your next trip. AUTOMATE WHAT YOU CAN Many functions can be automated, like weekly emails and social media posts. Entrepreneurs, like organizational strategist Brandi Olson, use tools like Zapier and Buffer to automate their workflows and make it easier to get away while still bringing in leads and not allowing business to come to a standstill. COMMUNICATE WHAT YOU CAN’T Some aspects of your business can’t be automated, and others likely shouldn’t be. Tell your clients well in advance about your trip so they can plan accordingly. Ask what you can do to help them feel taken care of before you leave. “Business Know-How” author Janet Attard also recommends not scheduling any big changes, like a new website launch
misunderstanding a trending hashtag about domestic violence to a presidential campaign asking people to use emojis to describe how they feel about student loan debt. These disasters produced major backlash because they were inappropriate, condescending, and insincere. Stay true to your brand persona and think twice before you approve an ad that riffs on a popular meme or claims your product is a “big mood.” REMEMBER THAT ‘GEN Z’ ISN’T A DEMOGRAPHIC Many of the mistakes companies made when marketing to millennials came from trying to market to “Millennials” — in other words, they relied on stereotypes to plan campaigns. Don’t make the same mistake with the 61 million Gen Zers about to enter the workforce. As president and founder of Red Fan Communications, Kathleen Lucente, puts it, “It’s more about understanding a set of behaviors, communication preferences, spending habits, brand affinities, and loyalties. Using terms like ‘millennial’ or ‘Gen Z’ might be easy, but they shouldn’t be applied to marketing when there are myriad other ways to understand behavior.” Marketers need to up their game when it comes to reaching this next generation — a generation who spent years watching companies clumsily attempt to connect with their millennial parents or siblings. Gen Z can spot insincere or manipulative marketing a mile away. or redesign, to take place while you’re gone. If you schedule social media posts to deploy, designate someone to manage the response. SET CLEAR EXPECTATIONS FOR EVERYONE Let your team and clients know what they can expect from you while you’re away. If you plan to unplug and won’t be available for the duration of your trip, clearly communicate that to your clients. Talk to an employee or trusted colleague about being on call so clients have support and so your team isn’t left scrambling if something urgent comes up. It’s not your responsibility to manage every hypothetical, but it is integral to the future of your business that you put systems in place so you don’t leave anyone feeling neglected. As the saying goes, treat others the way you want to be treated, and you’ll be swell. If your doctor leaves for two weeks, don’t you want to have a head’s up and a contingency plan? Taking a break is valuable to your business, and you might be surprised by how a change of scenery influences you. Some of your best ideas come out of being in a different environment than you're used to. The inspiration and renewed motivation you may bring back with you are priceless.
MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR VACATION 3 STRATEGIES TO SET YOUR BUSINESS UP FOR SUCCESS
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MAKE A CLEAN BREAK
THE PROPER STEPS FOR DISSOLVING YOUR BUSINESS
effect within 90 days. If there’s no partnership agreement in place, partners can try to work out the terms of dissolution together. If that doesn’t work, they may need to turn to a mediator and an attorney. A strong partnership agreement addresses dissolution so that partners can have peace of mind as they set out to do business together. Most agreements will contain agreed upon duties that each partner needs to complete before dissolution can happen, ensuring that one partner isn’t left with all the responsibilities of the business if the other leaves. They’ll also address percentage of ownership for each partner, making it clear how assets and liabilities would be distributed should one partner leave. Binding documents involved with the business, like leases, contracts, or loan agreements, can come into play and should be considered in the agreement and reviewed prior to dissolution. The best time to establish a partnership agreement is as soon as you enter the business partnership. The next best time is now. Give Reib Law a call. We can help you create a secure partnership that addresses the unexpected turns life may bring.
Ben has a child with special needs, and he’s decided to step away from his business so he can focus on his family. He’s ready to exit or dissolve the partnership, and he and his business partner, Greg, have come to an amicable agreement about the dissolution. But as Ben and Greg look back over their partnership agreement, they realize they never put the terms for dissolution into writing. Even worse, their agreement makes it difficult for Ben to step away from his responsibilities in the business.
It’s an unfortunate situation we often see. One partner needs to step away from the business, but because a partnership is either not in place or doesn’t address dissolution, they can’t make a clean break. The dissolution of a business partnership is a legal matter governed by state law. In most cases, businesses can file for dissolution through their local government, and it goes into
PEANUT BUTTER AND BERRY FRENCH TOAST
• 2 cups cornflakes • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter • 2 cups mixed berries • Powdered sugar, to sprinkle • Maple syrup, for serving
1. On a large baking sheet lined with wax paper, place 4 slices of brioche and spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on each. Cover with remaining slices, creating sandwiches. 2. In a pie plate, beat eggs with cream and vanilla. In another, coarsely crush the cornflakes. 3. Lightly soak sandwiches in the • 8 slices brioche, 1/2-inch thick • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter • 2 large eggs • 1/8 cup heavy cream • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract DIRECTIONS
5 PROVEN STRATEGIES TO SHATTERPROOF YOUR BUSINESS. Fact: 1 in 3 businesses have been hit with a lawsuit or have been threatened with a lawsuit over the past three years. This book lays out five Proven Strategies that, when implemented properly, will absolutely protect you and your hard-earned assets from any would-be legal action. Visit scottreib.com to order your copy today!
4. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Once melted and up to temperature, add sandwiches, cooking on one side until golden and crisp, about 2–3 minutes. 5. Return sandwiches to baking sheet, add remaining butter, and repeat on other side. 6. Top sandwiches with berries, sprinkle with powdered sugar, and serve with maple syrup.
egg mixture, then dredge in cornflakes, pressing to adhere. Return to baking sheet.
Inspired by Delish
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Vacationing 101 for Entrepreneurs INSIDE THIS ISSUE 1 2 2 3 3 4 Why Start the New Year in Winter?
How I Got Organized for the Trip of a Lifetime
Generation Z Is Coming — Are You Ready?
Does Your Partnership Agreement Address Dissolution?
Peanut Butter and Berry French Toast
WHY JANUARY? THE ORIGIN OF NEW YEAR’S DAY T he month of January kicks off by welcoming the new year — there are countdowns, fireworks, and of course, the ball drop in a freezing-cold Times Square. But why? Why do we start our calendars when much of the U.S. is in the dead of winter? Why January? The short answer is Julius Caesar and Roman politics. The calendar had long been a political tool in Rome. Depending on who was in power, Roman pontifices would add or subtract entire weeks from the year, manually adjusting the term limits of elected officials. As you could imagine, this caused a lot of chaos, because months frequently slipped out of time with the changing seasons. After becoming emperor, Julius Caesar brought about some much-needed reforms. Inspired by the Egyptian solar calendar, Caesar fixed the Roman year at 365 days and instituted the leap year to keep months aligned with the solstices. He moved the new year from the spring to the day that elected officials traditionally began their year-long terms, Jan. 1. This choice carried spiritual significance, since January was named for Janus, god of doors and gates. What better
month to celebrate new beginnings? Under Caesar and subsequent rulers, the Roman Empire expanded its reach, carrying its calendar with it. While much of Europe adopted Caesar’s calendar, New Year’s Day remained a hot-button issue for centuries. Thanks in part to the spread of Christianity and to the colder conditions in Northern Europe, there was a lot of resistance to the January start date. Religious leaders saw it as a pagan holiday, and much of Europe chose to restart the calendar on March 25, during the Feast of Annunciation. Much of Catholic Europe officially recognized Jan. 1 as the start of the new year after Pope Gregory reformed the solar calendar again, correcting certain mathematical errors made in Caesar’s day. There were still holdouts, however. In fact, England and its American colonies continued to celebrate New Year’s Day in March until 1752. So there you have it — we were very close to having our fireworks celebrations in lovely spring weather. Ultimately, the ubiquity of the Gregorian calendar won out, as the demands of our increasingly interconnected world made a shared calendar a necessity. So if you struggle to start your New Year's resolutions this winter, blame Julius Caesar.
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