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10 digital business books to download for Androids

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Goals for 2012

With the new year approaching, one of your resolutions may be to better your business or even finally create and found the business of your dreams. One of the best ways to become inspired and motivated is to learn from the greats that came before, the small business professionals who have made something of themselves and their visions. In honor of enhancing and improving your business, here are ten digital business books that you can buy for your Android device.

Entreleadership

1. Entreleadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches by Dave Ramsey- This book is for the small business professional who wants to make more of his/her business. Dave Ramsey shares his secret of turning his “one-man show to a multimillion-dollar business.” He believes that the only way to create success of a small business, and potentially turn that small business into a large successful company, is to have the business owner be a “hard-charging entrepreneur” and a “motivating, encouraging leader.” The combination of those two traits is what makes the difference, according to Dave Ramsey.

Two-Second Advantage

2. The Two-Second Advantage: How We Succeed by Anticipating the Future—Just Enough by Vivek Ranadive and Kevin Maney – Have you ever wondered what differentiates you and the world’s greats, like athletes, musicians, and, of course, successful business owners and CEOs? According to Ranadive and Maney, it all has to do with the ability to anticipate outcomes and events before they ever happen.  This book will encourage you to anticipate the needs of your customers and any problems that you may run into. If you can accomplish it, Ranadive and Maney believe you can improve your business and reach the top.

We First

3. We First: How Brands and Consumers Use Social Media to Build a Better World by Simon Mainwaring – Can one small change really make a big difference in the health and vitality of your small business? Simon Mainwaring thinks so. Just by implementing the professional use of social media, you can “earn consumer goodwill, loyalty and profit.” And as you know, loyal customers enable your small business to thrive. Throughout his book, Mainwaring gives case studies from large companies, including Whole Foods, Nike, and Coca-Cola.

Change Management

4. 10 Steps to Successful Change Management by George Vukotich – Any business owner knows that change is inevitable. And one little change can destroy or improve a business. This is especially true if the change is out of your control. However, Vukotich doesn’t believe you, as a small business owner, should give up when change comes your way. In ten steps, you can manage change effectively, learn from it, and understand why it’s happening.

Start Something

5. Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie – Nothing makes going to work easier and helps you work harder than when you love what you do. Mycoskie believes that “you don’t have to be rich to give back and you don’t have to retire to spend every day doing what you love. You can find profit, passion, and meaning all at once—right now.” You can make a difference, make a profit, and enjoy what you do every day. What could be better than that?

Lean Startup

6. The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries – If you’re a founder of a startup or several startups, there may be a new approach to business you’ll want to consider. Ries asserts that most startups don’t find success and they fail, but most of these failures are completely preventable. This book discusses how you, the startup founder and business owner, should stop creating extensive business plans and focus your attention to the creating and managing of your vision.

Gang Member to Multimillionare

7. Nothing to Lose, Everything to Gain: How I Went from Gang Member to Multimillionaire Entrepreneur by Ryan Blair – The author, Ryan Blair, “knows about building a business from the ground up.” While reading this book, you will learn how to be a hard-hitting entrepreneur. Some of Blair’s philosophies include having no sympathy for employees who aren’t making the cut, no matter how hard they say they’re trying, and that “most business plans aren’t worth the paper they’re written on.” If you’ve been looking for a blatantly and brutally honest book for small business owners, this might be it.

Thank You Economy

8. The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuk – Consumers are no longer voiceless. Social media and social networking platforms have given consumers back their voices. Social media is how the modern world is sharing experiences and opinions with and about businesses—both large and small. The actions and intentions of businesses have never been as visible as they are now. Customers demand “authenticity, originality, creativity, honesty, and good intent.” Customers also want one-on-one attention. Social media makes that possible. Vaynerchuk teaches you how to make that happen.

Leadership is Dead

9. Leadership is Dead: How Influence is Reviving It by Jeremie Kubicek – Self-preservation is a human trait that is universal. However, this universal human trait is the enemy to the “most potent professional asset on the planet”—influence. No longer should you guard and protect your ideas. It’s now the time to influence others through your business practices. Be a leader. Succeed. Kubicek believes that putting his ideas in motion will make you the leader you’ve always wanted to be.

Content Rules!

10. Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebook, Webinars ( And More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business by Ann Handley and David Meerman Scott – The right web content can encourage customer loyalty. And with so many platforms available these days, it has never been easier to connect with customers and potential customers. But it’s more than just having accessible content on the internet. It’s about having the right content, bold content. While Handley and Scott teach you how to create and administer this essential content, they also showcase case studies for even more emphasis of how the right content can make a world of difference for your small business.

The key is to pick and choose the ideas to improve small businesses that make sense to you, that inspire you. Not all of the above ideas and concepts will work for you. Try a few new methods, but remember to listen to your intuition. With that combination, you’ll be well on your way to small business success in 2012 and for many years after.

AGBeat is not affiliated with any aforementioned author.

The American Genius Staff Writer: Charlene Jimenez earned her Master's Degree in Arts and Culture with a Creative Writing concentration from the University of Denver after earning her Bachelor's Degree in English from Brigham Young University in Idaho. Jimenez's column is dedicated to business and technology tips, trends and best practices for entrepreneurs and small business professionals.

Business Entrepreneur

If you’re easily distracted, you’re more likely to thrive as an entrepreneur

(ENTREPRENEUR) If monotony and boredom at work- well bores you, it’s possible you may fit with the other entrepreneurs with a quick and constantly changing career.

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entrepreneurs work place

When Bill Gates was a kid, he knew he liked messing around with code. He couldn’t have known how it might evolve, but he was willing to live in the distraction, focusing on details when needed, but always learning, moving on, taking risks and growing in the process.

Some of the most successful folks among us are not content to sit and make widgets every day. They cannot thrive in a detail and focused work environment. So, it may come as no surprise to know that people who are more easily distracted are also more likely to thrive as entrepreneurs.

According to this study, if you are intelligent and get distracted more easily, those two qualities combined will likely enhance your creativity. And, that creativity and ability to use distraction as an advantage can be channeled to create new things, jobs, companies, etc.

For those of us who are more easily distracted, who enjoy doing different things every day, and who like learning, a recent article in the Harvard Business Review suggests a good option is to find a career path that provides the right amount of distraction and which is a great fit for your personality. If you do that your talent is more likely to be apparent because you are playing to your strengths. Also, if you are working in your sweet spot you will be more productive and motivated.

Maybe not surprisingly, the top job for those who live in distraction is entrepreneur. The term “easily distracted” often comes with a negative connotation, but considering an entrepreneur is taking risks, making things happen and creating companies, ideas, products that may have never existed, this spins that idea on its head. Entrepreneurs are the chief cooks and bottle washers of the world. They ideate, create, hire and inspire. None of that is possible in a monotonous work environment.

“Unsurprisingly, meta-analyses indicate that entrepreneurs tend to have higher levels of ‘openness to experience,’ so they differ from managers and leaders in that they are more curious, interested in variety and novelty, and are more prone to boredom — as well as less likely to tolerate routine and predictability,” according to the HBR story.

Other careers that are great fits for those of us (me included) who enjoy distraction are PR/Media Production, Journalism and Consultant. What these fields all have in common is, there is never a dull moment, switching from task to task is pretty commonplace, and you will do well if you can be a generalist – synthesizing information and weeding out the unnecessary.

Not sure where your strengths lie? Here’s a quick quiz to give you some feedback on how curious you really are.

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Business Entrepreneur

How can a small business beat a large competitor moving in next door?

(BUSINESS) How do you stand out when a big competitor moves to your neighborhood? Reddit has a few suggestions – some obvious, some not so much.

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small restaurant competitor

Small businesses, especially restaurants have been hit hard by lockdowns. Many closed for good this year, and those that are still hanging on are in a precarious position as their local economies shift.

Last week, a user on r/smallbusiness asked a timeless question that is especially relevant right now. Reddit user longbottomjr writes: “We have a strong competitor moving in next door in a few months. Our restaurant is one that pays the bills but […] I feel that if this new competitor takes up enough market share we will lose our restaurant. Can anyone chime in with resources/ideas I can use to help put together our plan of action?”

Comments quickly pointed out what common sense would dictate.

First, ensure the basics are covered. Being clean, quick, friendly, and high quality will take you far, no matter what competition you’re up against. And as u/horsemullet said, “Customer service also happens before someone walks through the door!” So make sure that your online hours, contact info, menus and social media accounts are up to date and accurate.

Another point emerged that is less intuitive: Competing businesses will naturally gravitate towards similar locations. This is a well-established phenomenon known within game theory as Nash’s Equilibrium. In the restaurant industry, this is actually a good thing. It brings entirely new customers to the area and ultimately benefits all the other nearby businesses, too.

Take advantage of the attention by offering something other spots don’t, like loyalty rewards, specials, unique offerings, or meal deals.

Speaking of the area, a great way to stand out from larger competitors is to build relationships with the community you serve, as u/sugarface2134 emphasized. “In my city there are two Italian restaurants in the same location – just across the parking lot from each other. We always pick the smaller one because the owner truly makes you feel like a member of the family.”

That’s an advantage of being a small, local business that all the money in the world couldn’t buy. Get to know your customers personally and you will not only create loyal regulars, but friends as well.

One of the top rated responses, from u/seefooddiet2200, made an often overlooked but critically important point.

“Talk to your staff and see if they have any ideas. These are the people that are working every single day and may know one or two ‘annoying’ things that if they were switched would make things easier. Or maybe they see that there’s specific things people ask for that you don’t serve. Every single [one] of your employees is a gold mine of insight, you just need to be open to listening to them.”

That is applicable to any business owner who wants to improve their practices.

Ask employees what they think, especially the ones who have stuck around a long time. Not only do they know the ins-and-outs of their jobs, but this builds rapport and trust with your staff. A good boss realizes that employees are more than their job descriptions. They have valuable thoughts about what’s working and not working, and direct access to customer’s opinions.

Good luck, u/longbottomjr! We’ll be rooting for you.

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Business Entrepreneur

How a newly funded coffee delivery startup is thriving during COVID

(REAL ESTATE MARKETING) Seattle’s Joe Coffee finds successful funding in hyper specific clientele and operations even mid-pandemic. But how did they do it?

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Joe Coffee delivery

Amidst a pandemic, you might not expect a small company with limited clientele to thrive. Yet, Joe Coffee, a Seattle-based delivery service, is doing just that.

Joe Coffee, an aptly named coffee runner, has received millions in funding, a large chunk of which was raised mid-pandemic. Their mission is simple: to bring coffee from smaller shops to local consumers, especially without endangering either party.

There’s a lot to be said about Joe Coffee’s valuation and mission, but what’s more intriguing is their unlikely success.

A food delivery service that focuses on coffee may not seem that niche, but when you look at Joe Coffee’s determination to stick to the Seattle area, coupled with its staunch resolve for frequenting smaller shops (e.g., not Starbucks), the service begins to look pretty specific–and, in an economy that honors sweeping solutions, this is a welcome change of pace.

The way their service works is fairly simple: Joe Coffee provides shops with signs and information on how to order through the Joe network, then consumers are able to download and order through a mobile app on all of the usual platforms. Joe Coffee takes a nine percent cut of the order total, credit card fees included.

In return, customers are able to order from their favorite, local, non-chain coffee shops, both supporting them and sustaining their caffeine addiction at a time where alertness is paramount and grouchiness is all too common.

What’s truly interesting about Joe Coffee’s example is that it demonstrates an availability for small services with extreme specificity in terms of operating capacity. By sticking to unique businesses in a relatively small metropolitan area (as opposed to, say, multiple cities), the service is more likely to be successful in execution and delivery, thereby solidifying its relevance to both consumers and businesses alike.

And, by playing into the need for curbside pickup or home delivery these days, Joe Coffee only furthers the perception that its service is necessary.

If the country begins to reopen–whenever that happens–it will be no surprise to see Joe Coffee maintain a relationship between consumers and smaller businesses in the Seattle area. For anyone offering a similarly niche service, this is a perfect example of a company to which you should pay attention.

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