How to Create a Small Business Budget

If you run a small business, it is important to create a small business budget to help control and manage your finances. Not only will this save you time but it will also help you to save money by being more aware of income and expenditure, and exactly how that expenditure is being deployed.

A very important aspect of any business, whether a large multinational corporation or a one-person home business, is to keep tabs of where money is being spent and be aware of why such expenditure was necessary. It is not as difficult a thing to do as many people believe, particularly if you choose the right tools to help you, and the cost involved in acquiring it will be saved many times over through good financial management. In saying that, there are many excellent free financial packages available that will help you with creating your budget.

The first step to setting up any budget is to open a spreadsheet. Although you could use a simple Excel spreadsheet, it is better to use a good accountancy software application such as Intuit’s Quicken or QuickBooks Pro Financial Software although you can also use any of the free Microsoft budget templates offered such as the Start-up Expenses Worksheet or Marketing Budget Plan templates.

When you are formulating a business budget, be sure to make allowances for unexpected expenditure. If you fail to do that, it is possible that you will be caught out, and once your budget goes off track you may find it difficult to get it back again. Always include some flexibility in any budget you create.

It’s strange how many people who own their own businesses will be scrupulous at home trying to reduce their personal bills, such as power bills and service providers, yet when it comes to their business they accept what they are charged. Try to get the cheapest provider you can for your communications such as telephone and internet services, and use the least expensive power supplier you can find.

If you find it less expensive to combine your telephone and internet providers then do so – you might even get your satellite TV included. Why do more businesses not use the free VoIP services available online for their telephone systems? Skype is free and enables you to carry out video teleconferencing worldwide – with free calls to other Skype users and reduced-price calls to landlines, it’s a no-brainer for any business.

You can often reduce insurance expenses by negotiating discounts by combining your personal and business policies or taking them from the same insurer. If you buy your life insurance, personal and business liability insurance, auto insurance and accident insurance all from the same provider, you will have a very powerful negotiating platform from which to secure a very good deal.

Savvy businessmen and women review their budgets regularly, and adjust them to cater for the unexpected. If you find yourself straying out of budget find out why and cut costs elsewhere to compensate. A financial budget for a small business must be maintained – you can’t just promise yourself to better next time! They need not be fixed, and are open to change, but you must try to meet the plans you set yourself at the start of the year or whatever period you are working to.

Another useful free business template is the Microsoft Expense Budget Worksheet. Quicken Home & Business is particularly useful for home-based entrepreneurs since it enables you to manage both your home and business budgets in the same package. Quicken Online Free is another free application for personal finances. There are many more software applications available that can be used for your business and home budgets.

Do not underestimate the importance of a good small business budget because it can make the difference between success and failure. You can use any of those applications recommended above to look after your financial planning, and there are also many more online from which you can choose.

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The Pros and Cons of Business Card Templates

While most businesses prefer to spend money to get a great product, other companies just don’t have the funds to do so. Fortunately, with so many business card template websites becoming popular, it can be extremely easy to find free and professional custom business cards. However, with any situation, there are pros and cons. Below are a list of what to expect from business card templates.

For most small agencies, using business card templates is a wonderful tool to easily make custom business cards. After all, we rarely have the time or budget to spend hours creating something that has never been done before. This way you are able to design something professional and then worry about business card printing later. It is great for any firm who needs networking cards immediately, without having to shell out hundreds.

Most businesses love the fact that a majority of business card templates are actually free. This means less money to spend on these networking tools, and more money to focus on other aspects of the company. By using such templates, employees can worry about other assignments at the same time. It is a convenient way to do two things at once, without having to spend most of your time dedicated to business card printing or designing. It is also extremely useful when employees do not have a creative touch. For instance, if they know close to nothing about designing a business card and just cannot make it look professional, business card templates will give it a specialized look. This will not only impress your clients, but it will make your company look more professional and detailed.

Although these business card templates are great for just starting out firms and computer illiterate employees, there are also cons. Many businesses feel that there is a lack of originality, since most companies are frequently using the same business card templates. With hundreds of companies giving out network cards which all have the same look, it can get discouraging and a bit exasperating. The last thing a potential client wants to see is a half assed job. After all, your custom business card says a lot about how you work and your company’s overall tone. If you were to have a simple layout – one that dozens of other companies have used, then you may not get a great reaction from your potential client. Most companies who want to work with one another expect originality and creativeness.

Although business card templates may change a person’s view, most companies can benefit from them. If you are just starting out, and need all of the money you can get, the last thing you want to do is use it on custom business cards. Therefore, it is important to use business card templates in the beginning stages of your company. These templates provide you with an elegant and professional look, even if other companies do have the same layout. Luckily, with hundreds of business template websites on the internet, you can find a layout that hasn’t been overdone.

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Guide to Free Business Card Templates

Are you just starting out on your business and have limited budget to hire a professional graphic designer to design your business card? If budget constraint is the main factor, don’t be upset. There are plenty of websites that offer business card design that you can download for free. With the abundance of design software available in the market, you can virtually have your card designed in a matter of minutes.

Websites that offer free templates often come in JPEG format which allows you to customized it with most design software. Then, all you need to do is to send it to the local print shop or you can even have it printed out with your own printer at home. If you do opt to print it yourself, make sure to have a high quality printer and stock papers to achieve a professional-looking business card. You certainly do not want to distribute cards that look cheap and unreliable to your potential customers.

By using online ready-made templates, you do not need to be graphically trained to get it done. Choose a template that you like and run it in your favorite business card design software which usually can be purchased for less than $100. Then, add your business logo, name and contact details. That’s it, as simple as that.

Most of these online templates are designed professionally by their line of graphic designers. Another good thing is, some of these websites offer customization services for a small fee, and sometimes they are willing to help you edit the templates by adding your contact details for free. Just send an email to them and find out if they offer these services for you. Though these ready-made business card templates are not exclusive, but it is still a great way to kick start your business with a tight budget.

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The Need for a Budget Template

Budgeting is not an easy task, especially when you do not have enough money to budget in the very first place. A lot of families and individuals are actually facing a grave problem of how they will be able to make both ends meet, especially now when the prices of almost everything are skyrocketing. Good thing there are now plenty of tools that will be able to help you out in budgeting, a task that can be frustrating, depressing and tedious all at the same time.

At present, there is no longer a need to get the services of the best accountant or tax adviser just so you can plan and analyze the status of your finances. You can now do things all by yourself, and that would be through the help of a budget template.

The budgeting template will be able to tell you where you are actually as far as your finances are concerned. It is very useful in those instances when you will have to budget and obviously, budgeting is very much needed if you are after managing your money to your utmost best.

People usually feel that it is a must to make the most out of every single thing and this is very much applicable even to using the budget template. While there are free budget templates, there are also a lot of other paid budget templates that come with great features, although in this aspect, less is sometimes more.

In a budget template, you will list down all the accounts that you have and this will surely allow you to have more savings. The chances of getting debts is actually very small since you can easily check the exact money that you still have to make it work for your expenses.

What are the other reasons why you need to use a budget template?

First, you will be able to know the current situation of your status in numeric terms using best budget software/budget template. You will be able to check if your income is actually covering your expenses and as well as your other liabilities. These are the factors that determine the present results and positions of your finances. And with this, you will be able to easily predict what might happen in the near future or you can also start setting your goals depending on the results in the present.

If you are also planning to open your own business, you will definitely need some money as capital. And as far as the needed capital is needed, you should apply for a certain loan from a lender or bank. Such institutions will be more than happy in paying more depending on the ability that you have and they will surely be interested in knowing how you are actually managing your finances. When you can prove them that you are good in managing your finances, you will definitely get an approved application.

Through the use of a budget template, you will definitely make the most out of your money.

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Shoe Repairs And Several Other Things When I Was 7

Shoe Repairs And Several Other Things When I Was 7
My Dad repaired most of our shoes believe it or not, I can hardly believe it myself now. With 7 pairs of shoes always needing repairs I think he was quite clever to learn how to “Keep us in shoe Leather” to coin a phrase!

He bought several different sizes of cast iron cobbler’s “lasts”. Last, the old English “Laest” meaning footprint. Lasts were holding devices shaped like a human foot. I have no idea where he would have bought the shoe leather. Only that it was a beautiful creamy, shiny colour and the smell was lovely.

But I do remember our shoes turned upside down on and fitted into these lasts, my Dad cutting the leather around the shape of the shoe, and then hammering nails, into the leather shape. Sometimes we’d feel one or 2 of those nails poking through the insides of our shoes, but our dad always fixed it.

Hiking and Swimming Galas
Dad was a very outdoorsy type, unlike my mother, who was probably too busy indoors. She also enjoyed the peace and quiet when he took us off for the day!

Anyway, he often took us hiking in the mountains where we’d have a picnic of sandwiches and flasks of tea. And more often than not we went by steam train.

We loved poking our heads out of the window until our eyes hurt like mad from a blast of soot blowing back from the engine. But sore, bloodshot eyes never dampened our enthusiasm.

Dad was an avid swimmer and water polo player, and he used to take us to swimming galas, as they were called back then. He often took part in these galas. And again we always travelled by steam train.

Rowing Over To Ireland’s Eye
That’s what we did back then, we had to go by rowboat, the only way to get to Ireland’s eye, which is 15 minutes from mainland Howth. From there we could see Malahide, Lambay Island and Howth Head of course. These days you can take a Round Trip Cruise on a small cruise ship!

But we thoroughly enjoyed rowing and once there we couldn’t wait to climb the rocks, and have a swim. We picnicked and watched the friendly seals doing their thing and showing off.

Not to mention all kinds of birdlife including the Puffin.The Martello Tower was also interesting but a bit dangerous to attempt entering. I’m getting lost in the past as I write, and have to drag myself back to the present.

Fun Outings with The camera Club
Dad was also a very keen amateur photographer, and was a member of a camera Club. There were many Sunday photography outings and along with us came other kids of the members of the club.

And we always had great fun while the adults busied themselves taking photos of everything and anything, it seemed to us. Dad was so serious about his photography that he set up a dark room where he developed and printed his photographs.

All black and white at the time. He and his camera club entered many of their favourites in exhibitions throughout Europe. I’m quite proud to say that many cups and medals were won by Dad. They have been shared amongst all his grandchildren which I find quite special.

He liked taking portraits of us kids too, mostly when we were in a state of untidiness, usually during play. Dad always preferred the natural look of messy hair and clothes in the photos of his children.

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What Are The Greatest Changes In Shopping In Your Lifetime

What are the greatest changes in shopping in your lifetime? So asked my 9 year old grandson.

As I thought of the question the local Green Grocer came to mind. Because that is what the greatest change in shopping in my lifetime is.

That was the first place to start with the question of what are the greatest changes in shopping in your lifetime.

Our local green grocer was the most important change in shopping in my lifetime. Beside him was our butcher, a hairdresser and a chemist.

Looking back, we were well catered for as we had quite a few in our suburb. And yes, the greatest changes in shopping in my lifetime were with the small family owned businesses.

Entertainment While Shopping Has Changed
Buying butter was an entertainment in itself.
My sister and I often had to go to a favourite family grocer close by. We were always polite as we asked for a pound or two of butter and other small items.

Out came a big block of wet butter wrapped in grease-proof paper. Brought from the back of the shop, placed on a huge counter top and included two grooved pates.

That was a big change in our shopping in my lifetime… you don’t come across butter bashing nowadays.

Our old friendly Mr. Mahon with the moustache, would cut a square of butter. Lift it to another piece of greaseproof paper with his pates. On it went to the weighing scales, a bit sliced off or added here and there.

Our old grocer would then bash it with gusto, turning it over and over. Upside down and sideways it went, so that it had grooves from the pates, splashes going everywhere, including our faces.

My sister and I thought this was great fun and it always cracked us up. We loved it, as we loved Mahon’s, on the corner, our very favourite grocery shop.

Grocery Shopping
Further afield, we often had to go to another of my mother’s favourite, not so local, green grocer’s. Mr. McKessie, ( spelt phonetically) would take our list, gather the groceries and put them all in a big cardboard box.

And because we were good customers he always delivered them to our house free of charge. But he wasn’t nearly as much fun as old Mr. Mahon. Even so, he was a nice man.

All Things Fresh
So there were very many common services such as home deliveries like:

• Farm eggs

• Fresh vegetables

• Cow’s milk

• Freshly baked bread

• Coal for our open fires

Delivery Services
A man used to come to our house a couple of times a week with farm fresh eggs.

Another used to come every day with fresh vegetables, although my father loved growing his own.

Our milk, topped with beautiful cream, was delivered to our doorstep every single morning.

Unbelievably, come think of it now, our bread came to us in a huge van driven by our “bread-man” named Jerry who became a family friend.

My parents always invited Jerry and his wife to their parties, and there were many during the summer months. Kids and adults all thoroughly enjoyed these times. Alcohol was never included, my parents were teetotallers. Lemonade was a treat, with home made sandwiches and cakes.

The coal-man was another who delivered bags of coal for our open fires. I can still see his sooty face under his tweed cap but I can’t remember his name. We knew them all by name but most of them escape me now.

Mr. Higgins, a service man from the Hoover Company always came to our house to replace our old vacuum cleaner with an updated model.

Our insurance company even sent a man to collect the weekly premium.

People then only paid for their shopping with cash. This in itself has been a huge change in shopping in my lifetime.

In some department stores there was a system whereby the money from the cash registers was transported in a small cylinder on a moving wire track to the central office.

Some Of The Bigger Changes
Some of the bigger changes in shopping were the opening of supermarkets.

• Supermarkets replaced many individual smaller grocery shops. Cash and bank cheques have given way to credit and key cards.

• Internet shopping… the latest trend, but in many minds, doing more harm, to book shops.

• Not many written shopping lists, because mobile phones have taken over.

On a more optimistic note, I hear that book shops are popular again after a decline.

Personal Service Has Most Definitely Changed
So, no one really has to leave home, to purchase almost anything, technology makes it so easy to do online.
And we have a much bigger range of products now, to choose from, and credit cards have given us the greatest ease of payment.

We have longer shopping hours, and weekend shopping. But we have lost the personal service that we oldies had taken for granted and also appreciated.

Because of their frenetic lifestyles, I have heard people say they find shopping very stressful, that is grocery shopping. I’m sure it is when you have to dash home and cook dinner after a days work. I often think there has to be a better, less stressful way.

My mother had the best of both worlds, in the services she had at her disposal. With a full time job looking after 9 people, 7 children plus her and my dad, she was very lucky. Lucky too that she did not have 2 jobs.

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What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate

The results of this past election proved once again that the Democrats had a golden opportunity to capitalize on the failings of the Trump Presidency but, fell short of a nation wide mandate. A mandate to seize the gauntlet of the progressive movement that Senator Sanders through down a little over four years ago. The opportunities were there from the very beginning even before this pandemic struck. In their failing to educate the public of the consequences of continued Congressional gridlock, conservatism, and what National Economic Reform’s Ten Articles of Confederation would do led to the results that are playing out today.. More Congressional gridlock, more conservatism and more suffering of millions of Americans are the direct consequences of the Democrats failure to communicate and educate the public. Educate the public that a progressive agenda is necessary to pull the United States out of this Pandemic, and restore this nations health and vitality.

It was the DNC’s intent in this election to only focus on the Trump Administration. They failed to grasp the urgency of the times. They also failed to communicate with the public about the dire conditions millions have been and still are facing even before the Pandemic. The billions of dollars funneled into campaign coffers should have been used to educate the voting public that creating a unified coalition would bring sweeping reforms that are so desperately needed. The reality of what transpired in a year and a half of political campaigning those billions of dollars only created more animosity and division polarizing one extreme over another.

One can remember back in 1992 Ross Perot used his own funds to go on national TV to educate the public on the dire ramifications of not addressing our national debt. That same approach should have been used during this election cycle. By using the medium of television to communicate and educate the public is the most effective way in communicating and educating the public. Had the Biden campaign and the DNC used their resources in this way the results we ae seeing today would have not created the potential for more gridlock in our government. The opportunity was there to educate the public of safety protocols during the siege of this pandemic and how National Economic Reform’s Ten Articles of Confederation provides the necessary progressive reforms that will propel the United States out of the abyss of debt and restore our economy. Restoring our economy so that every American will have the means and the availability of financial and economic security.

The failure of the Democratic party since 2016 has been recruiting a Presidential Candidate who many felt was questionable and more conservative signals that the results of today has not met with the desired results the Democratic party wanted. Then again? By not fully communicating and not educating the public on the merits of a unified progressive platform has left the United States transfixed in our greatest divides since the Civil War. This writers support of Senator Bernie Sanders is well documented. Since 2015 he has laid the groundwork for progressive reforms. He also has the foundations on which these reforms can deliver the goods as they say. But, what did the DNC do, they purposely went out of their way to engineer a candidate who was more in tune with the status-quo of the DNC. They failed to communicate to the public in educating all of us on the ways our lives would be better served with a progressive agenda that was the benchmark of Senators Sanders Presidential campaign and his Our Revolution movement. And this is way there is still really no progress in creating a less toxic environment in Washington and around the country.

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