James Collins reports:
"There are three main types of financial statements. They are the balance sheet, [the] income statement and the cash flow statement. The cash flow statement is created by line items from both the income statement and balance sheet. There are three different sections of the cash flow statement, and each one provides a little more insight into the cash position of the company. Writing a financial analysis of a cash flow statement must include a discussion about cash flow from operations, cash flows from investing and cash flows from financing activities. Analyze cash flows from operations. This is the first section in the cash flow statement. Investors want a company that has positive cash flow from operations. If cash flows from operations is positive, explain which line items contributed to the increase. If it is negative, talk about those line items which contributed to the decrease. Be sure to include a discussion about working capital, which is calculated by subtracting current liabilities from current assets. Working capital is used to discuss short-term funding needs for operations. Identify cash flows from investing. Cash flows from investing is usually negative due to the purchase of assets. Assets purchased in this section are considered depreciable or capital assets, which are tax deductible unless they are financial instruments such as marketable securities. Discuss the amount and nature of purchases if the value is negative. If the number is positive, discuss why the company felt the need to dispose of assets. If the company is strapped for cash, it may have to sell assets in order to raise capital. Write about cash flows from financing. Financing activities include the issuance of bonds or stocks. It also includes the payment of interest and dividends on those stocks. If cash flows from financing is positive, discuss how that capital was raised -- through debt or equity issuance. Talk about what the capital will be used for and if the company anticipates a need for more. Write a conclusion about the company's sources and uses of cash. Most investors want a company that has positive cash flows from operations rather than investing or financing. If this is not the case, investors or readers will want to know why. Provide a recommendation about the health of the company's cash flow situation based on your analysis."
George Lawrence reports:
"Hair care is a lucrative business opportunity if you have what it takes to be a barber. While you may start out in an established barbershop or hair salon, eventually you may venture out and start your own business. Barbershops require planning, securing financials, and marketing—just like other businesses. Drafting a business plan is the first step to opening your own shop...Research your local market. At a minimum, look in your phone book and count the number of barbershops and hair salons in your area. Consider visiting the competition and reviewing how the shops are [set up]. The more thorough your research, the better prepared you will be to meet the competition. Find potential locations to open your barbershop. According to business-plan-made-easy.com, locations should be easy to access, have ample parking, and have the potential to attract customers. Space in a shopping mall or a shopping center is generally good. Gather data about your finances. Think about how you will secure loans and start-up costs. This step will also require you to think about the equipment you need such as scissors, chairs, razors[,] and sanitizing materials, and how much it will cost to purchase equipment. Think about your marketing strategies and how you will fund them. Take steps to acquire the proper state-required licenses and certifications. If you are not already certified, but you still want to write the plan, discuss how you will get the licenses and how long it will take...Describe your business, the market, the competition, how you intend to staff the business[,] and what insurance you need. Think about a name for your business, write a mission statement, [and] discuss goals. Use the market research information you gathered to complete the first section of your business plan. Create subheadings for each part of this section as necessary. Discuss financial data in section two. Use the preliminary financial data you gathered to determine how much money you need to start and how you intend to acquire the money, either from loans or [from] personal finances. Detail the first year of operation month by month. Project finances over the course of the first three years. Detail your marketing plan. Discuss how you intend to advertise your business. Include information about coupons or specials. Summarize the information in a section you can call 'Executive Summary.' Compile the business plan. Include a coversheet, a table of contents, your executive summary, and the sections concerning the business itself, finances and marketing. Include supporting documents such as prior tax returns, proposed lease agreements, and copies of your license and certifications."
Sharon Kennedy reports:
"Many festivals and venues require music concert proposals from bands in order to consider hosting their concerts. The goal of these proposals is to inform the concert organizer about the band, its music and its promotion strategy so that the organizer can evaluate whether the concert is likely to be a success. A good proposal will be clear and descriptive, and relate to both the commercial and [the] artistic attributes of the band or musician. Most important[ly], it must be persuasive. Obtain a concert proposal form from the music festival or venue you are applying to. Many have ready-made forms that detail exactly what information they're looking for. Give the basic information such as the name of your act, the contact person and his or her contact information, and your website (if you have one). Note the dates you are available to perform. Provide a short artist biography, including some of the band's or artist's musical achievements and previous concerts. This should be one or two paragraphs. You want to be descriptive, but relatively objective. Describe your concert program. Include how many sets you want to play and how long the sets will be. For classical musicians, include which pieces you will be performing, who the composers are, and approximately how long the pieces will last. Attach a sound file with a sample of the artist's music if the proposal will be submitted by email or online. If the proposal is submitted in hard copy, include a CD. Describe your ideas for promotion, and mention how you currently promote yourself (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). If you already have promotional materials like posters or photos, you may include them...Your proposal should be one to two pages in length. Design and layout are important. Make sure your proposal looks clean and professional. Check spelling and grammar before submitting your proposal. Read up on how to write a business proposal; that should give you some good guidelines and tips...Don't be discouraged if your proposal is rejected. The music industry is very competitive and it takes a lot of perseverance to make it. If you decide to modify your proposed program after you have submitted the proposal...you should notify the organizer to keep your credibility."
Kimberlee Leonard reports:
"Before suing, write a demand letter called a Notice of Intent to Sue following standard business letter formatting...Business letters use block formatting. This means all paragraphs and blocks of information align with the left margin. Use one line space between blocks. All margins (top, bottom, left and right) are 1 inch. Use the first block of information for the sender's contact information followed by the date, then the recipient's block of contact information. Then include a subject line informing the recipient of the reason for the demand letter. Use a font size between 10 and 12 with simple and professional typesets such as Arial or Times New Roman...A demand letter usually comes after several other layers of correspondence between the sender and the recipient, all of which have yielded no resolution. Clearly state the reason for the letter. Describe how the other party has failed to meet legal expectations and obligations...At the very least, the Notice of Intent to Sue demands remuneration for costs already spent, such as refunds. Also, state financial damages incurred where those are applicable...Communicate your demands clearly, including the desired financial remuneration, contract termination and timeframe for resolution. State that the next step is a lawsuit if the matter isn't resolved within a specific time. Keep the letter short and professional, refraining from emotional comments. Lawsuits are expensive, so keeping the demand professional creates the best opportunity for a positive response. Make sure the letter is addressed to the proper person in the right department. Decide whether or not to include enclosures documenting the situation. Should the matter go to court, it might be best saved for the case as evidential documents for the courts to review. And, remember to sign and date the letter...Anyone can write a Notice of Intent to Sue; it doesn't need to come from an attorney. Business owners can write their own demand letters. Some organizations do have an attorney draft the letter as a strong-arm tactic in an attempt to force the recipient to settle before an expensive lawsuit ensues. An attorney's letter tends to have a stronger tone and might even cite basic case law to make the point that his client is in the right. For non-attorneys, the demand letter shouldn't be as strong. The tone should be assertive, but not so threatening that the recipient will choose to ignore the demand and instead fight it out in court."
Lisa McQuerrey reports:
"Make an honest assessment of whether your boss was out of line or uninformed, or if she was somewhat on-target with the reprimand. It would be wise for you to acknowledge if some element of the reprimand was warranted. If there’s even a hint of truth in the reprimand, note what that was...Not every reprimand is...an exact criticism of a single event or action. Some are more nebulous, such as, 'You’re always late' or 'You never meet deadlines.' This non-specific reprimand can be more frustrating, because you’re being hit with a blanket statement. In this instance, assemble the information you need to support your objection -- such as email chains, timeline documents, project reports, or even your teammates' supporting comments...Summarize your written objection by outlining the action you’re requesting. If the reprimand was not formal -- in that it didn’t go in your employee file -- simply state that you want to set the record straight...[M]ake sure that your letter is professional and that it states only the facts, as you see them. Using the letter to put down the company or to criticize your boss, will only make the situation worse...Use your own time to complete all the steps for writing your objection, not during the time you're supposed to be working for your employer. Write your objections with a clear head. Writing a rebuttal from an emotionally charged state of mind isn't the best way to produce an effective objection. Many times, you can resolve issues through communicating directly in addition to providing a written response outlining your objections. Be open to resolving any issues you and your supervisor have that led to the initial reprimand...When you're given a reprimand or a disciplinary warning, don't refuse to sign it because you think not signing it means you don't agree with it. Only a rebuttal says you don't agree with the reprimand. Your signature generally means that you received the reprimand. Reprimands and disciplinary actions are confidential. Don't ask a co-worker to review your rebuttal; refrain from involving another employee in your work-related issues."
Michelle Fabio, Esq. reports:
"The LegalZoom 3-step process was created by well-known attorneys at prestigious American law firms who are experts in how to create a living will. There are no complex instructions to follow and nothing to download or print, which means you'll be on your way to having a simple living will tailored to your situation in no time...Fill out our simple questionnaire. A LegalZoom Living Will is a comprehensive legal document that is personalized based on your questionnaire answers. You can choose when it takes effect, create special provisions, and even specify instructions for organ donation...Our team reviews your questionnaire answers for spelling, consistency, and completeness, and then our LegalZip® software generates your personalized living will...If you have chosen a LegalZoom Living Will Basic Package, we will send it to you within four business days. The Comprehensive Package will be sent within two business days. If you need your living will immediately, we also offer same-day preparation and email delivery for an additional fee. Then, you simply follow our easy wrap-up instructions to validate your living will."
D. Laverne O'Neal reports:
"When employees know what a company is about, it can make them feel better about coming to work every day. Internal newsletters are also good tools for acknowledging and lauding individuals and teams for their contributions, helping to boost morale. Writing an internal newsletter requires a focused, coordinated effort...Choose an appropriate length for the publication. Employees are already bombarded with a lot of information from their department heads and the human resources department. The newsletter should be long enough to convey information of substance but brief enough for employees to read during lunch, for example...Gather and compile updates from department or project team heads. In many companies, departments function separately. Letting one department know what another is doing helps inspire a sense of teamwork and community...Interview a company newsmaker or client. Newsmakers do not have to be top executives. Project managers and successful sales staff also qualify. Interviewing clients about how they use company products helps employee[s] understand how the end result of their work is being put to use...Solicit employee contributions. An employee opinion column...can offer an individual perspective on life in each department of your company. A cartoon creation contest allows employees of varied stations to flex their creative muscles in an attempt to amuse their co-workers...Ask human resources about notable recent hires. Reading blurbs about new personnel helps employees feel they are in the know. It also serves to make new employees feel warmly welcomed...Compile the material into an easily digestible format. Lead with the newsmaker interview. Put department updates and new hire information in the middle of the newsletter. Put the employee contributions on the back cover, so employees can easily find and comment on them...Create rules for employee-solicited content. Foul language, personal attacks and other negatives should of course be discouraged. Ask yourself whether certain company news is too sensitive or tentative to be released, even internally. For example, if you are anticipating a large new client or contract, but have not quite landed it, you may want to hold off on including the news in the internal publication. Visuals are key."
Mike Broemmel reports:
"Follow certain tactics and techniques when you write a confidential report. By understanding how to write a confidential report you can convey important information in a way that maintains its integrity and authenticity. After drafting a confidential report, ensure that you take appropriate steps to secure the document. Review any laws that underpin the requirement for a confidential report. A higher standard is applied to confidentiality when it is a legal requirement. Compile all necessary data to be use[d] in the confidential report. If the report is to be confidential, the underlying data warrant the same level of protection. Prepare an appropriate cover first. It must set forth clearly the confidential nature of the document. If the confidentiality of the report is based on a particular law, reference the legal provision on the cover. In addition, state the penalty for dispensing the confidential contents of the report. Draft the report as you would any other similar text, confidential or not. Insert a confidentiality disclaimer on each page, commonly within the header or footer. Secure (or destroy, as appropriate) the underlying data used to compile the confidential report when the drafting process is complete. Or the data can be attached to the report."
Beth Rifkin reports:
"Brainstorm about work accomplishments for five minutes. Set a timer and write down any work-related achievement that comes to your mind, no matter how small it may seem. This exercise can help you think beyond everyday tasks in terms of accomplishments. Include any special projects on which...you worked, [any time] that you received praise, promotions, challenging assignments or anything that made you feel proud while performing your jobs...Choose your favorite three to five accomplishments for each position on your resume and quantify them. Placing achievements in measurable terms can help the hiring manager see how you contributed to the bottom line in the companies where you worked. Rather than saying, 'Developed a company-wide system that reduced the use of paper,' include a measurable factor such as, 'Developed a company-wide system that reduced the use of paper by 47 percent.' Depending on the size of the company, 47 percent less paper can translate into a considerable amount of money...Include action words in your achievement statements. Action words can make your statements more powerful. Instead of, 'Was in charge of the organizational project,' say something like, 'Spearheaded a multilevel organizational project, hand-picking a specialized team of engineers to bring the project to a swift and successful conclusion that resulted in a decrease in company-wide energy use by 12 percent.'...Place the greatest achievement at the top of the list under the respective position. Starting the explanation of your duties and responsibilities with an ambitious achievement can really make your resume stand out among the competition...Include any customer satisfaction statements that you received with your accomplishments. Customers are the crux of consumer-based businesses. Having a positive customer service experience is certainly [bragworthy]. Turn the experience into a professional action statement."
Kori Morgan reports:
"Whether they're ruthless tornadoes or torrential hurricanes, storms can add atmosphere and conflict to a personal narrative or story. The use of vivid description is a crucial tool for bringing these weather phenomena to life on paper and moving your plot forward. Using figurative language and active verbs can help you place readers right in the middle of the rain, wind and thunder...A simile is a type of description that makes an explicit comparison between two things using the words 'like' or 'as.' A metaphor, by contrast, is a direct comparison that does not use these words. You can use these devices to create surprising descriptions of your storm...To use a metaphor, you might write, 'An avalanche of hailstones fell from the sky.'...In real life, the sounds of nature are often key indicators of approaching storms. You can bring these sound effects to your descriptions by using onomatopoeia, a device where words mimic the sounds of their meaning...Try making a list of all the sounds the storm in your narrative might involve and brainstorm onomatopoeic words to describe them...If a storm is central to your story's conflict, you might consider having the weather literally take on a life of its own. Personification occurs when a writer gives human characteristics...to an inanimate object. If your characters are trapped in open water during a hurricane, you might write, 'The angry waves smacked against the side of the boat.' Although water can't feel anger, the description of the waves as 'angry' adds emotional texture and characterization to the storm...Because bad weather can often get out of control, describing a storm is not the time to skimp on verb usage. Weak verbs, such as 'was' or 'were,' drain your descriptions of energy rather than infuse them with detail. Using specific, active verbs for the storm's motion gives readers a more detailed image of the story's events."
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