October 2013 Features

  • James H. Rainwater Conference Center Is Honored With ConventionSouth’s Annual Readers’ Choice Award

    October 31, 2013

    It is with honor that the publishers and editors of ConventionSouth, the national multimedia resource for planning events in the South, present James H. Rainwater Conference Center with a 2013 Readers’ Choice Award.

  • How to Cut Down on Your Startup Costs

    October 29, 2013

    A snazzy office, the latest equipment, smart employees and the option to complete a project on your time, and perhaps at the beach – many new entrepreneurs dream big when they plan their first venture. The only problem is that a new business is much more about hard work, sincere efforts and reduction of costs than the way they picture it.

  • Benefits of Having a Small Business Mentor

    October 28, 2013

    As a business owner or entrepreneur, you have a lot on your plate. And whether you’re busy trying to establish your business or developing a growth strategy for your existing operation, it can be valuable to get an expert opinion from a mentor.

  • How Health Care Reform Changes Impact the Small Business Owner

    October 25, 2013

    As an employer, you may find yourself thinking that you have yet to address health care reform requirements for your business. Some of you may be asking: Why should I rush to meet guidelines and deadlines that seem to be constantly changing and being pushed back? Well I have an answer — you should take action for your employees.

  • Big Questions Every Business Plan Should Answer

    October 24, 2013

    Every small business needs a business plan. It’s an essential document that’s not just for start-ups and expansions – because a great business plan can serve as a road map for your company and help you make the right adjustments when things go wrong. Your business plan should be a living, breathing portfolio that evolves along with your company.

  • 5 Tips for Competing as a Little Guy in a Big, Busy Space

    October 22, 2013

    Chances are, if you and your company are doing something right, you’ve attracted the attention of a giant. That could mean you’ve spent years perfecting your product or service only for Google, Amazon or Microsoft to step in and launch their take on your idea. Then other companies catch onto the trend, too

  • Majority of U.S. Entrepreneurs Start Their Businesses at Home

    October 21, 2013

    If you operate your business from home, you’re not alone. A recent survey of U.S. businesses indicates the majority of entrepreneurs do the same. And that’s not just in the startup phase either.

  • How to Handle a Public Relations Crisis

    October 18, 2013

    Admit it: None of us are as graceful as we think we are. We’ve all “stepped in it” so-to-speak and sometimes, the results aren’t pretty. Whether we’re out for a run or walking within the confines of our home, we’ve all had a clumsy moment with unintended consequences. Likewise, no matter how appropriately you run your business, if you’ve been in business long enough, then you’re bound to receive publicity you don’t like.

  • Deciding When to Retire: Stacy Bush on When Timing Becomes Critical

    October 17, 2013

    Deciding when to retire may not be one decision but a series of decisions and calculations. For example, you'll need to estimate not only your anticipated expenses, but also what sources of retirement income you'll have and how long you'll need your retirement savings to last. Stacy Bush examines some factors to help you plan.

  • C-Suite Leaders Look to Customers to Steer Business Strategy

    October 16, 2013

    Despite expressing an unprecedented commitment to direct customer influence on their business decisions and operations, one-third of CEOs worry that the rest of the C-suite is out of touch with customers, according to a new IBM study.

  • Expand Your Network at the 2013 Business and Wellness Expo

    October 15, 2013

    On Thursday, October 17, local business leaders will be able to connect at the 19th annual Business and Wellness Expo presented by the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce and its sponsors – Azalea Health, 1st America Health Group, Air Methods and ValdostaCEO. The expo will be held at the Rainwater Conference Center from 5 to 7 p.m.

  • Ag Exports Highlight Inaugural International Agribusiness Conference

    October 11, 2013

    Two Georgia leaders are encouraging the exportation of agricultural products to foreign countries. At an International Agribusiness Conference and Expo in Savannah the last week of September, hosted by the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and Georgia Southern’s Division of Continuing Education, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and Agricultural Commissioner Gary Black encouraged approximately 200 attendees to explore global markets for their commodities.

  • Doug Robinson on Transforming Customer Complaints into New Sales

    October 10, 2013

    Having been married for over 35 years, I live by the mantra that “I don’t want to be right, I want to be happy.” And I know that when my honey isn’t happy, nobody is happy! In sales, being right and wrong gets trumped by something else; it’s the perception of the customer that matters most. Keeping the customer satisfied and happy is paramount.

  • Selection of Leadership Lowndes Class of 2014 Underway

    October 09, 2013

    The selection process is under way for the Class of 2014 of Leadership Lowndes, an educational program designed to develop leaders and build networks to address the issues and needs of the local community. Established in 1998, the program admits 30 high-potential members each year and has more than 700 graduates.

  • Georgia Manufacturing Activity Registers its First Increase in Six Months

    October 07, 2013

    Georgia’s manufacturing experienced a slight increase – the first increase in six months – due to strong gains in employment, production and supplier delivery time, according to the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) released by Kennesaw State University’s Econometric Center in the Michael J. Coles College of Business.

  • How Common are Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans?

    October 04, 2013

    Small Business Administration (SBA) guaranteed loans get a lot of attention in Washington. President Obama, for instance, believes that “the SBA should be provided additional resources to assist small businesses in acquiring capital necessary to start, continue, or expand operations”, the Congressional Research Service reports.

  • Small Business Employment in Recessions and Expansions

    October 02, 2013

    Small business employment has grown more slowly than big business employment since the end of the Great Recession. That wasn’t supposed to happen. Conventional wisdom is that small business employment declines more in economic downturns, but rises more in economic expansions. Small companies, the argument goes, are more nimble, making their employment decisions more responsive to economic conditions.