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Actress, Teacher & Author Sheri Sanders on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

 Show #373

Topic: What it means to be a female entrepreneur in a male dominated entertainment business

Rock musicals are DOMINATING Broadway. Where rock musicals were once written by Musical Theatre composers such as Andrew Lloyd Webber, Stephen Schwartz, Jason Robert Brown and Jonathan Larsen, they are now being written by AUTHENTIC pop recording artists.

Cyndi Lauper wrote Kinky Boots. Sheryl Crow wrote Diner. Regina Spektor wrote Beauty, Tori Amos' The Light Princess is up and running in London, Sting wrote The Last Ship. The musicals Motown and Beautiful are following in the footsteps of jukebox musicals such as Priscilla, Rock of Ages, and Jersey Boys, using authentic Motown and 70s folk/rock music.

Actress, teacher, and author Sheri Sanders has toured worldwide to teach teachers, students, and aspiring actors how to choose, cut, arrange, research, vocally style, and popular music to successfully audition for rock musicals.

Sanders' performance techniques have brought her students not only to the Broadway stage, touring companies, and regional productions of Deaf Wests' Spring Awakening, Motown, Waitress, Diner, Natasha Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812, Kinky Boots, The Last Ship, Here Lies Love at the Public, Bring It On, Jersey Boys, Spiderman, Memphis, Rock of Ages, Sister Act, Mamma Mia, American Idiot, Wicked, Rent, Hairspray, Legally Blonde and Beauty (to name a few), but also to television shows: The Voice, X Factor, American Idol, and The Glee Project.

As the only coach to bridge the gap between popular music and theatre, Sanders' book, Rock the Audition: How to Prepare For and Get Cast in Rock Musicals (Hal Leonard Books), and her workshops are changing the face of auditioning for musical theatre on the stage and screen.

Sheri teaches and has taught her masterclass at Pace University, Penn State, Syracuse University, Ithaca College, Millikin University, Rider College, ART, OKCU, OU, Wagner College, Circle In The Square, The Conservatory at Papermill Playhouse, Belmont U, Danish Academy of Musical Theatre, San Diego State University, University of Alabama, Jersey City University, Boston Conservatory, Emerson, Berkley School Of Music, Boston University, Boston College, Walnut Hill, Columbia College, North Central College, Roosevelt, Porchlight Theatre Company, Texas Christian University, New York Film Academy, with Actors Connection, Capes Coaching, University of Kentucky, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Steinhardt, Elmhurst, Texas State, Camp Broadway, The Broadway Workshop, Showchoir Camps of America, MTEA, NYSTA, SATC's, and NATS Boston, Chicago, and PA!


Sheri frequents LA, and Chicago and Boston to serve their Musical Theatre communities, holds a 4-week Rock The Audition Master Class here in NYC, and is the worlds ONLY Rock Music Repertoire Coach.

Sheri has officially been invested in by Broadway Producers Hunter Arnold and Artech LLC, taking her entire training on-line with an 8-week live rock class, cut and arranged sheet music, and instructional videos. Visit Rock The Performance.


www.sheri-sanders.com/home/


www.rocktheperformance.com


Listen on Podomatic:

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7 Mistakes New Business Owners Make

by Deborah A Bailey

For many of us, starting and running a business isn’t something that comes naturally. In school we’re instructed in how to choose careers, not start businesses.

If this is new to you, you will not learn how to do it after just one class in marketing, sales or writing a business plan. You will have to adjust your entire way of thinking.

Here are some mistakes that new business owners should watch out for (some of them will be familiar to you even if you’ve been in business for a while).

1. Spending lots of money on things you don’t need.  If you aren’t selling a lot of products you may not need an elaborate e-commerce set-up. Don’t plan on big product launches or obsess over having thousands of social media followers if you’re just starting out. You’ll be setting yourself up for failure if you try to follow the gurus (who have built their businesses over time) and believe that you can achieve the same success in 5, 8 or 10 easy steps.

2. Not wanting to spend any money on things you do need. There are a lot of free applications and online tools, and that’s great. But at some point you must start to invest in your business either by hiring experts to help you, buying tools, or by investing in training. You may be able to do lot of things on a shoestring, but if you want to grow your business you have to invest in it.

3. Wanting to stay in your comfort zone. If you are doing something you’ve never done (which is something business owners deal with everyday) then you will feel uncomfortable at times. If you let fear stop you from having new experiences, your business will suffer.

4. Letting other people define your success. At one time or another we’ve all been drawn into the group-think about what defines success. Is it making 6 figures? 7 figures? Going on exotic vacations? Having thousands of followers on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook? There as many definitions as there are businesses. You can go broke following someone else’s idea of what success looks like. Yes, you can model successful people, but if you’re trying to recreate their experience it won’t work. Either you’re following your own path or you are not.

Seven mistakes new business owners make


5. Not knowing how to sell. The good thing is that you don’t have to act like the stereotypical used car salesman in order to do so. If you believe in what you’re selling and you enjoy sharing it with others, that’s half the battle. However, don’t get caught in the trap of believing you can put your business on auto-pilot and it runs itself. It won’t. Even “passive income” products have to be marketed and sold. You’ll have to get out there and get the job done.

6. Believing that you can achieve huge results with very little effort. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There are a lot of claims being made in order to cut through the noise and get our attention. Do yourself a favor and read the fine print. You’ll usually find something that says, “results are not typical.” Often the results that a few people achieve are represented as the average result of using a product or service. Don’t let desperation lead to you to make choices you’ll regret later on.

7. Not being clear on what you really want. What does your ideal business look like? Have you created goals for what you want to achieve? Do you have a vision for your life and your business? If not, it’s time to start creating one. If you don’t know where you’re going, how can you get there?

We can all learn from mistakes, so don’t beat yourself up for making them. Building a business is a journey, just be open to learning and growing as you go along.

Copyright © 2010 – 2016 Deborah A. Bailey


Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection. She's the creator and host of Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ , a weekly internet talk show. For more information about Deborah and her books visit her Soul of an Entrepreneur blog: http://dbaileycoach.com and her site: http://DeborahABailey.com

Why Teleseminars and Webinars Could Be Your Secret Weapon

by Lisa Sasevich

 Several years ago when I launched my business, I had a newborn and a three year old at home. I was the breadwinner of my family, and I was constantly struggling to keep all the balls in the air that I was juggling.

Today, my kids are quite a bit older, I'm still the breadwinner and I'm still working from home, but my business is thriving to the tune of having now done more than $30 million in sales. Plus, I'm touching people all over the world - all while taking a yummy amount of vacation time.

People ask me all the time, how in the world do I do it all?

The truth is, I do have a secret weapon. I use a very simple tool over and over again: the teleseminar and webinar.

Teleseminars are audio trainings that are given over the telephone that people from all over the world can listen to. I've had people from 134 different countries listening in!

A webinar is similar, but adds a visual element, with your viewers sitting in front of their computers, tablets or smart phones, watching slides or videos that enhance your audio teaching.

Both teleseminars and webinars can be used as promotions, such as with a preview call or a Q & A, to enroll prospective clients into new courses or services. Or they can be used to deliver the actual training or course.

Despite all the changes and advances in technology since I started using teleseminars and webinars, they still get my vote for being the simplest tool that can bring quantum results.

Here are three of the many reasons why:

1. Low overhead. Low risk.

You don't have to make a big investment to get started. You already have the tools that you need: your phone and your computer. You may also want to invest in a high-quality headset, microphone and some training, but then you're good to go. You can do the teleseminar and webinar from home while the kids are at school or from anywhere you have access to a phone and a computer. Let me tell you, no other tool is more flexible for a working parent, a traveler on the go or someone looking to start a new business with their expertise.

2. Helps you organize your knowledge and see your process for getting results.
Your expertise is already in you. By delivering your program using a five-part teleseminar or webinar structure, you get it organized and out so that it can help others. The teleseminar and webinar force you to structure and organize what you know into a system that other people can get results with. As those results start pouring in, and you get clearer about what you're teaching, your confidence rises and you begin to experience super-effective sales conversion and profits.

3. They're easy to automate. Another awesome thing about teleseminars and webinars is that you can pre-record them and schedule them to run later. And those emails that generally go out after a teleseminar or webinar, those can be pre-written and scheduled too.

In fact, my friend and colleague Justin Livingston says that automating your webinars is a great way to create less stress in your business. He recommends getting your webinars automated and covering your expenses first, so that you have choice and room to breathe, before you start doing things like online launches and live events, which most people are trying to survive on, but are more feast or famine.

If you'd like to learn a lot more about webinars and the power, freedom and choice that comes from automating them from Justin grab his new book here.


If you love what you do, but hate the "sales part," sales conversion expert Lisa Sasevich will show you simple, quick and easy ways to boost sales without spending a dime...and without being salesy. Get this FREE Sales Training and Sales Nuggets now at www.FreeSalesTrainingFromLisa.com.

Author Q&A: Sugarland by Martha Conway

About the Author
Martha Conway's first novel, 12 BLISS STREET, was nominated for an Edgar Award, and her novel THIEVING FOREST won the North American Book Award for Historical Fiction. Her short fiction has been published in The Iowa Review, The Carolina Quarterly, The Massachusetts Review, Folio, and other journals. She is the recipient of a California Arts Council fellowship, and teaches creative writing at Stanford University's Online Writers Studio and UC Berkeley Extension. Her latest novel is SUGARLAND.

About Sugarland
IN 1921, TALENTED young jazz pianist Eve Riser witnesses the accidental killing of a bootlegger. To cover up the crime, she agrees to deliver money and a letter to a man named Rudy Hardy in Chicago. But when Eve gets to Chicago she discovers that her stepsister Chickie, a popular nightclub singer, is pregnant by a man she won’t name. That night Rudy Hardy is killed before Eve’s eyes in a brutal drive-by shooting, and Chickie disappears.

Eve needs to find Chickie, but she can’t do it alone. Lena Hardy, Rudy’s sister, wants to learn the truth behind her brother’s murder, but she needs Eve’s connections. Together they navigate the back alleys and speakeasies of 1920s Chicago, encountering petty thugs, charismatic bandleaders, and a mysterious nightclub owner called the Walnut who seems to be the key to it all.

As they fight racial barriers trying to discover the truth, Eve and Lena unravel a twisted tale of secret shipments and gangster rivalry. SUGARLAND mixes the excitement of a new kind of music—jazz—with the darker side of Prohibition in a gripping story with “real suspense for anyone who likes a good mystery.” (Kirkus Reviews). Read more and check out an excerpt here: http://marthaconway.com/sugarland/

I downloaded a review copy of Sugarland from Netgalley (read my review here) and I fell in love with the book. Right after I finished, I bought a copy for my mom, then I connected with Martha and invited her to stop by a Q&A. 


Deborah Bailey:  Glad to have you here! I have to tell you I was really pleased to find a historical novel about the Jazz Age. What inspired you to write a book set during that time?

Martha Conway: I'm not a musician, but I love to listen to live music. I'm always jealous of the musicians who get to do this for a living, and I'm in awe of their skills. I've always wanted to write about musicians. Early jazz in particular is exciting to me; you can just feel all these musicians playing, experimenting, having fun. It's a new world of music. And it came about when the American society was radically changing, too, from agrarian to industrial, from horses to cars. I was interested in that juxtaposition.


Deborah:  Your book captured those changes very well. How would you describe what the story is about?

Martha:  A young jazz pianist, Eve Riser,  is caught in a drive-by shooting that kills the bootlegger standing next to her. Helped by Lena Hardy, the bootlegger's sister, Eve recovers only to find that her pregnant sister and nightclub singer Chickie is missing. Navigating the back alleys and speakeasies of 1920s Chicago, Eve and Lena must fight racial barriers in order to save Chickie and learn the truth behind the murder.


Deborah: The main characters were really interesting and complex women. How did you come up with them?

Martha: Eve is based largely on the pianist and composer Mary Lou Williams, a tough and warm-hearted and talented woman. She braved the early jazz scene, playing on the circuit and composing her own songs, married several times, moved to France, moved back, and throughout it all she always kept composing and performing no matter what. There's also a little of Earl Hines thrown into Eve's character (especially her background). Lena Hardy, the white nurse who bonds with Eve, took longer for me to create. She is based on all of us who would like to play music but don't. Unlike me, though, Lena has some talent. However, at that time (the 1920s) it was nearly impossible for a white woman to perform professionally.


Deborah: I was pleasantly surprised to find the story being told through Eve's POV. What prompted that choice?

Martha: The first draft was from Lena's point of view, but I always felt Eve was the stronger character, and I also felt closer to her. However, as a white woman, I was hesitant to write from an African American point of view. But I have written from a male point of view, and in many ways that feels harder to me. I didn't want fear to stop me, so I decided to try. In the end, I may have gotten it wrong, but I think it's important as a writer (and a human being) to try to see things from someone else's point of view.


Deborah: What really stood out for me were your vivid descriptions of the music. How did you research the sounds of that period? 

Martha: I read a lot of memoirs and interviews. Especially helpful was Whitney Balliet's "56 Portraits in Jazz." I also had a book, "What to Listen for in Jazz," which came with a c.d. That meant I could listen to a piece of music and read what professionals said about what was going on musically, which I could never have done myself. I used that for many of the descriptions in a modified form.


 
Deborah: The relationship between the lead characters gave a lot of insight into race relations at that time. What research did you do to be able to  capture the nuances of those relationships?

Martha: There was a big race riot in Chicago right around that time, and I read a lot about it even though it doesn't take place (or is mentioned) in the course of my story. That gave me some insight. But it was also interesting to read about the small amounts of integration that happened at the stock yards among the employees. Again, I read some oral interviews from people who worked there at that time. Events there made it possible, I thought, for a white woman like Lena's aunt to look beyond race when faced with a decision.


Deborah: Often writers like trying out different genres. Do you write in others as well?

Martha: I mostly write historical fiction now. Sugarland is a mystery, but the historical element is very strong.


Deborah: Of course, as a writer I have to ask this question! What's your writing routine?

Martha: I write every weekday morning for two hours or 750 words. I find if I don't have a word limit, I tend to stop after 300 words, but if I push myself to write more of the scene, I almost always find a clue how to proceed for the next day.


Deborah:  That's terrific. While we're on the subject, any tips for aspiring authors?

Martha: Write. Write consistently. Make a writing schedule and keep to it. Even if you can only write a paragraph a day - do that. 


Deborah: Great advice! So, are you working on anything new?

Martha: I am finishing up my next novel, entitled THE FLOATING THEATRE, which is coming out in the Fall of 2017. The story takes place in antebellum America, and is about a socially awkward costume designer who gets a job on a riverboat theatre on the Ohio River and gets caught up in the Underground Railroad. 


Deborah: I'm looking forward to reading that! Thanks so much, Martha. Please share your website and social media links.

Martha: I enjoyed it! Here they are:

Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/marthaconway
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/23092.Martha_Conway
Facebook personal page: https://www.facebook.com/martha.conway.52
Google+: https://plus.google.com/+MarthaConwayWriter
Twitter (author): http://twitter.com/marthamconway
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/marthamconway
Instagram: http://instagram.com/marthamconway
LinkedIn Public Profile URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/marthaconway

You can find Sugarland on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Sugarland-Jazz-Mystery-Martha-Conway-ebook/dp/B01EXID2FY







It’s All in Your Head

by Chris Atley

Okay, so it’s all in your head. Of course your thoughts and beliefs live there, but the assumptions you’re creating about other people are completely untrue. They literally exist in your head and nowhere else.

This is a tough one to swallow, because sometimes we think we know what is happening with another person and we really don’t.

We’re coming from a good place; with our past experiences telling us certain things to be true. BUT if we start taking things personally, we are definitely off in our assumptions.

Everyone has their own stuff going on ALL of the time. Each of us is operating from our own paradigm – how we see the world. We all have our own unique experiences that then cultivate our beliefs and perspective.

We can’t possibly know what is happening with John down the street who never smiles or the person yelling at their kids in the grocery store. Who knows what is really happening with people behind the scenes. They might even be a close friend or family member sharing their darkest moments with us, and we still won’t really know what is happening for them inside their mind. Thank goodness really. Imagine being so in tune with everyone else. How exhausting would that be?

So how does this apply to business…well there is the obvious…that if you feel off in one area of your life it’s carrying over to what is happening in your business too. BUT this applies on a much deeper level as well. From your staff, to colleagues, to clients, you cannot possibly know what is really going on with them. So to make assumptions when you don’t receive a response from someone right away, or to so readily react to an email with an angry reply is not serving anyone. Especially not you.

What you’re really doing is setting yourself up for a lot of worry, anxiety and deep down FEAR. Caring what people are thinking about you, needing approval and people pleasing to the nth degree to compensate for the assumptions you’re making that aren’t even correct in the first place.  This is the ego in its finest form. It will jade your perspective so that you’re coming from an “I’m not good enough” place.

For example, if someone doesn’t reply to you right away (or within your standards), you start to make assumptions about why and start taking it personally. You then think something is wrong with you (unconsciously), and resort to blame – “I didn’t do anything wrong” – or seek reassurance – “this is weird right?” This behaviour is really stemming from not feeling good enough at a core level. We don’t want to make mistakes and have people not like us, and so we blame or seek reassurance so that we can be in the right instead. This is so we can feel justified in our behaviours - because it feels too painful to feel bad about ourselves and that we might have made a mistake. Tough business.

This is all bull shit. It came from first of all taking something personally when it likely had nothing to do with you in the first place. Then creating a whole story around it, thus impacting how you’re now showing up in the world and letting it affect you and your life.

All because you listened to the ego who told you somewhere along the way that you weren’t good enough and you bought into its story.

You are good enough. People love you and they just have their own stuff going on (like we all do). See it for what it is, and ask for a shift in perspective if you’re having trouble. It works every time. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made an assumption, start to get worked up about it, only to find that not only is it not true, it’s the complete opposite! Our ego likes to talk us into all kinds of stories and the faster you can catch it the better.

You can strengthen your relationship with yourself by practicing self-care, setting stronger boundaries, and saying no more often. This will help you feel more confident, brush things off more easily, and connect with your intuition on a deeper level.

Namaste friends :-)

Written by Success Speaker & Coach Chris Atley, CEO of Chris Atley LLC ~ Decisions by Design. For complimentary success tips for business and life, please visit www.chrisatley.com.

Venae Watts of Minerva Dairy Inc. on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Venae Watts of Minerva Dairy
Show #377

Venae Watts, a member of the 5th generation of family members running, Minerva Dairy, America's oldest family-owned cheese and butter dairy.

Minerva Dairy Inc of Minerva, OH was founded in 1894 when 1st Generation Max P. Radloff established Radloff Cheese in Hustiford, WI.

During the early 1900’s, Max built multiple cheesemaking locations, culminating with Minerva Dairy, which began producing bottled milk, ice cream, butter and cheese in 1935.

Today, in its 5th Generation of family ownership, Minerva Dairy still produces a 84% Batch Churned Amish Butter as well as a wide variety of cheese that includes Cheddar, Swiss, Italian and Kosher varieties.


http://www.minervadairy.com



 https://www.facebook.com/MinervaDairy/
https://twitter.com/churnitup 
https://www.instagram.com/churnitup/
https://www.pinterest.com/minervadairy


Listen on Podomatic:
http://dbcoach.podomatic.com/entry/2016-06-15T08_39_08-07_00


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Moving from Employee to Business Owner

by Deborah A Bailey

You may have heard that you should start your business before you quit your job, however, doing both things at the same time can be a huge challenge.

Even if you have the ability to put in hours on the job and in your business, eventually you will have to make the transition into being a full-time entrepreneur if you want your business to grow. Getting that regular paycheck can be very reassuring and give you a feeling of security that will be hard to give up. Having a plan will keep you on track.



1. Pick a date for when you’d like to move into running your business full-time. Set a date that feels comfortable for you.

2. Look at your finances. Do you need a certain amount of money for starting your business? Will you be covered once your regular salary is no longer coming in?

3. Start eliminating debt if you can. You may need to incur debt to invest in your business, so get rid of as much as you can while you still have a regular salary.

4. Keep your family in the know about your plans. It’s best to discuss any concerns now. Don’t wait until you’ve left your job and then have to deal with issues around your decision.

5. Once you are responsible for creating your own income, it won’t be the same as living with a paycheck coming in on a regular (and predictable) schedule. There will be fluctuations in your income. Figure out what money you’ll need in order to provide for your business and living expenses.

6. If you’re working from a home office, being a full-time entrepreneur may mean you’ll be spending a lot of time alone. Start networking and connecting with other entrepreneurs so that you can build a support system before you go out on your own.

7. Create your vision for what you want to accomplish. If you have limiting beliefs they will impact your business success. Need help as you make this transition? Consider getting a business or life coach to support you. All successful people have coaches and/or mentors; they are a critical part of an entrepreneur’s “power team.”

Starting a business takes courage and vision. By becoming a business owner, you are stepping out of the mainstream and stepping into a way of life with limitless potential. When planning this major career transition, give yourself time to plan it properly so that you can insure your business success.

Copyright © 2016 Deborah A. Bailey

Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection. She's the creator and host of Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ , a weekly internet talk show. For more information about Deborah and her books visit her Soul of an Entrepreneur blog: http://dbaileycoach.com and her site: http://DeborahABailey.com.

Image by: Haute Chocolate www.hautechocolate.ca

Review of FreshBooks Cloud Accounting Software for Small Business

by Deborah A. Bailey

When I was starting out as a freelance writer, I was overwhelmed with keeping track of expenses and invoices. I first discovered FreshBooks when I was looking for a way to send an invoice and keep track of the payments in the same place.

When I'd started freelancing by providing services for my entrepreneur friends, I got away with putting together quick invoices using MS Word. But I realized pretty quickly that as my small business evolved, I needed to step it up when it came to my small business accounting.

Since I've never been a spreadsheet wiz (I can handle the basics, but that's about it) keeping track of expenses using MS Excel was a pain. But even though I still use spreadsheets for some things, they don't provide an end-to-end solution. The thing is, a small business owner has a lot of tasks to juggle. Having everything you need in one place not only saves time, but it's a stress-reliever as well.

Here are three things I appreciate about FreshBooks:

1.    Creating professional-looking templates for my invoices. The best thing was being able to set up one template and use it over and over again. No starting from scratch with each new client, or with repeat clients.

Another good thing is that you can also keep track of payment due dates and send reminders if payments are late. That's not something you'll always have to do, but let's be honest, it does happen. If you don't keep track of invoices, how can you keep track of the money coming into your business?

2.    Logging expenses and creating reports. I still haven't completely discarded all the receipts cluttering my desk, but it was incredibly helpful to be able to log everything in one place. I used to save a combination of print and online receipts, and when I needed totals, it would take hours to pull everything together. Nothing beats having it all in one place.

3.    Accepting online payments. There are so many payment options out there, but I was concerned about finding a solution that was safe and secure. This way, clients can pay as soon as they receive the invoice. And did I mention there's an app for that? I can keep track of payments using the FreshBooks mobile app. It really couldn't be easier.

To be honest, I'm not someone who enjoys working with numbers (I was an English major for a reason). But if you're not keeping track of income and expenses, you can't grow your business.  It was a relief to find accounting software that included the features I needed (without a lot of extras I don't need). If you're looking for small business accounting software to help you with your business accounting, give FreshBooks a try.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Though I was financially compensated for this post, the opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection.

Review of FreshBooks Small Business Accounting Software

Casting Call: New TV Series Looking for Young Women Entrepreneurs


How to Be an Artist Without Losing Your Mind, Your Shirt, or Your Creative Compass with JoAnneh Nagler on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Show #374

Topic: How to Be an Artist Without Losing Your Mind, Your Shirt, or Your Creative Compass
 


JoAnneh Nagler is an author, painter, musician and yoga teacher.  She is the author of How to Be an Artist Without Losing Your Mind, Your Shirt, or Your Creative Compass, and the Amazon Top-100 Book The Debt-Free Spending Plan.  Find her at www.AnArtistryLife.com.


Listen on Podomatic:
http://dbcoach.podomatic.com/entry/2016-06-08T12_34_51-07_00


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Less Than Perfect Credit? How Get Business Funding & Improve Your Credit Score

by Meredith Wood

A great credit score can give you a huge advantage when looking for a small business loan. On the flip side, however, a bad credit score can seriously hinder your chances of approval and limit your funding options.

Fortunately, there are things you can do to improve your credit score, but if you need the money right away, you may want to consider less traditional funding methods. Below we've listed the best business loan options for those with bad credit.

1. SBA Microloan

It's become nearly impossible for small businesses owners to get a loan through their local bank, but with bad credit, your chances of approval are pretty much slim to none. Luckily for small business owners, the SBA has made it much easier to get approved for a loan.

While they don't directly do the lending themselves, the SBA is willing to guarantee a portion of your loan, which creates a huge incentive for the bank or financial institution doing the lending, to approve more loans for small business owners. Although loans through the SBA still do require a decent credit, if you're looking for a smaller loan, you may be able to qualify through the SBA's Microloan Program.

Loans that come through the Microloan program can be anywhere from $500 to $50,000. And since the SBA microloans were designed for companies that are just starting out and have low capital requirements, they can be a great financial source for those who have little to no business credit history.

2. Online Lenders

If your credit score is less than perfect and you're unsure of your eligibility for a small business loan, online lenders could be a great resource. You can fill out an online application and, within minutes, find out if you qualify. Not only does that save you the time of going through a lengthy loan application process, but the standards of online lender are more lenient than those of your local bank.

If you find you're still not qualifying for a loan with online lenders due to a bad credit score, Kabbage may be just the lender you are looking for. They don't rely on your credit alone, as they'll allow you to link your online business accounts such as your business checking account, eBay, and more, to help determine your loan eligibility. Other types of lenders, like Fundbox (a unique type of invoice financing), don't even pull your credit score at all.

3. Merchant Cash Advance

If most of your revenue comes from credit or debit card sales, you could be a qualified candidate for a merchant cash advance. Although a merchant cash advance isn't technically considered a loan, you will receive a lump sum of money in exchange of a fixed dollar amount of your company's future credit and debit card sales.

You'll apply through online lenders and, if you've been approved, could receive funding within as little as a day or two. A merchant cash advance requires very little paperwork and is a quick easy way to receive financing with no collateral, even if you have bad credit.

Lenders will provide anywhere from $2,500 to $250,000 of immediate cash flow for your business. As quickly as you receive the money, however, you'll have to begin paying it back. Lenders will being to automatically deduct a fixed percentage from your daily revenue until the loan is paid off; since they're deducting a fixed rate, you end up paying less on slower sales days, and more on the days your sales are higher.

While a merchant cash advance could be a great financial resource for those with bad credit make sure you can afford it. This type of financing typically comes with hefty fees, and since you're making daily payments, it could hurt the cash flow of your business. MCAs are known to be the most expensive loan on the market, so keep this in mind if you have other options.

Always Calculate the APR


Since your credit score is less-than-perfect, you may be eager to take any loan or financing that's offered to you, but be cautious and make sure you know a loans APR before agreeing to anything. APRs for those who have a bad credit score will always be higher than for those that have a better credit history. To calculate a loan's potential cost, you can use a business loan calculator to determine if you could afford the loan you've been offered.

Regardless of your loan choice, if you make your payments on time, after you pay off the loan, you may be able to qualify for a cheaper loan the next time around.

About the Author: Meredith Wood is the Head of Content and Editor-in-Chief at Fundera, an online marketplace for small business loans. Prior to Fundera, Meredith was the CCO at Funding Gates. Meredith manages financing columns on Inc, Entrepreneur, HuffPo and more, and her advice can be seen on Yahoo!, Daily Worth, Fox Business, Amex OPEN, Intuit, the SBA and many more.

Do You Care What Others Think….YES!!

by Chris Atley

To care or not to care what others think…that is the question.

The Ego definitely thrives on keeping us separated and creating any real connection from others. It wants us to stay in “not smart enough, not good enough, who are you to this or that” territory. It keeps us in fear. Fear of what others think, fear of connecting and truly loving people. It keeps us in the place of always needing to be right and proving to the world how smart we are and that damn it we are good enough!

Our higher self, our true self on the other hand, is love and abundance. We see others equally and know deep down we are all part of the bigger whole, part of a bigger consciousness where we are all equal. Where we are worthy of love and acceptance, because we are love and an extension of our Creator.

So to care or not to care….

Well, if we’re coming from the Ego it is dysfunctional. To care if we’re being judged is seeing our brothers and sisters as separate. It’s coming from a place of smallness, unworthiness and unequal. It forces us to act from a place of fear, which just isn’t real. If someone is acting adversely to you, it’s because you are projecting that fear outwards. If you weren’t, it would not even faze you and you would likely not even notice it.

On the other hand, if you’re coming from a place of love and kindness, you want to extend your love to others and treat them with kindness, love and respect. If they hurt, you hurt, and it’s from that perspective that it makes sense to care what others think. Not think about you per se, but about how they are thinking and feeling. Looking at a situation involving another from a place of how can I best help this person? How can I honour them and help them see through their obstacles? How can I help them see their greatness? How can I be there for them in a way that serves them?

And if someone is caught-up in their ego (in whatever way that looks like), it’s recognizing they are doing the best they can, truly sending them love (a prayer), and moving forward with your creations and serving in the best way you can. This is where setting healthy boundaries with others from a place of self-love and love for them comes in handy.

All we can do is work on filling ourselves up with love and that energy will extend to others like a ray of light, and if you feel off sometimes that’s okay too. Look at the thinking causing the decisions you’re making and by taking the time to feel your emotions you will actually feel more peaceful, and again be extending peace and love to others.

Namaste fellow souls xo


Written by Chris Atley, Success Coach for entrepreneurs. Join Chris to discover your true worth to increase your personal wealth. Create your ideal business by grabbing my Live Limitless Guide for free at: www.chrisatley.com.
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