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SMBs losing confidence in Social Security, seek more control of retirement plans

When it comes to Social Security, two-thirds of small business owners in this country want the opportunity to manage their own accounts, according to a new survey conducted by Harris Interactive and commissioned by ING DIRECT's ShareBuilder 401k.The new survey, completed by more than 500 small business owners across the U.S., reveals that: 

So, as a retirement plan sponsor what can you do?

With financial markets seemingly out of control, what can you do to take care of your retirement plan? Review this list to ensure you are maximizing your retirement opportunities.  
Practice Management

How to manage in a downturn: Strategies for entrepreneurs

Setting aside their original blueprint for growth agenda, three prominent entrepreneurs, guest speakers on Ernst & Young's October 14th Thought Center Webcast Strategic Growth Leadership Series, agreed to engage instead in a candid discussion on what entrepreneurs actually can control and manage in a time when they can't control the economy.

Intuit offers financial health tips for women

Female entrepreneurs, stay-at-home moms, and women graduates across the country share a common thread – dreams. And with the country facing economic uncertainty, women are also united in their determination to achieve their dreams and thrive in any economy.To help women manage the critical, yet complex tasks of personal and small business finances, Intuit Inc., maker of QuickBooks, Quicken, and TurboTax software, offers a series of timeless tips designed to help them achieve their goals.

Global advisory group to review reporting issues related to credit crisis

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) have announced that they will create a global advisory group comprising regulators, preparers, auditors, investors, and other users of financial statements. The advisory group will help to ensure that reporting issues arising from the global economic crisis are considered in an internationally co-ordinated manner.

FASB and IASB work together on reporting issues in financial crisis

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) have announced further details on their joint approach to dealing with reporting issues arising from the global financial crisis. The boards reiterated the importance of working cooperatively and in an internationally coordinated manner to consider accounting issues emerging from the global crisis.

FASB gives private companies temporary reprieve from FIN 48

At the October 15, 2008 meeting, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) redeliberated the scope of the proposed deferral of FASB Interpretation No. 48, Accounting for Uncertainty in Income Taxes, for certain nonpublic entities.

Bankers ask SEC to override FASB’s new fair value guidance

The American Bankers Association has asked the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to use its authority to override the Financial Accounting Board's (FASB) additional guidance on fair value, FAS 157-3. In a strongly worded letter to SEC Chairman Christopher Cox, Edward L. Yingling, President and CEO of the bankers' group said that the guidance, "basically ignores what we believe to be the intent of the SEC's release of September 30, 2008."

U.S. business owners' pessimism at all-time high

Energy prices, recession, and credit availability are among the biggest concerns for U.S. business owners, whose pessimism is at an all-time high in the history of the PNC Economic Outlook survey.Nearly one in three business owners (29 percent) are pessimistic about their own company's prospects during the next six months, compared to 21 percent in the spring and 10 percent in last fall's findings of this semiannual survey, introduced in 2003 by The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

7 reasons why operating a home-based small business is advantageous to clients

By Bruce Katcher, Ph.D.THE PROBLEM:Many professional service providers seem embarrassed that they operate a small business out of their home. They are concerned prospects and clients will view this negatively. Although I personally don't go out of my way to advertise that I operate out of my home, I don't hide the fact either. I worked for four years for a large, international consulting firm with posh offices at a fancy address. I know from this experience that working as a small business from my home offers many advantages to my clients.

New SBA site geared toward Baby Boomers

The U.S. Small Business Administration has unveiled a new Web site geared to the 50-plus entrepreneur, providing useful information, links, and resources vital to starting, growing, and expanding a small business.The new Web site, "50+ Entrepreneur," features interactive information and links to help 50-plus entrepreneurs consider the benefits and rewards of business ownership, and to help them make informed choices about business ownership.

Publicize your small business with videos on YouTube

Many people view YouTube solely as a resource for wacky practical jokers looking to post humorous video clips of their latest exploits. But for entrepreneurs, the Web site can also form a key part of marketing strategies. Steph Williams, project administrator at the National B2B Centre, explains to our sister site,, how YouTube can benefit your business.

SEC, FASB issue clarifications on fair value accounting

The current environment has made questions surrounding the determination of fair value particularly challenging for preparers, auditors, and users of financial information. The SEC's Office of the Chief Accountant and the staff of the FASB have been engaged in extensive consultations with participants in the capital markets, including investors, preparers, and auditors, on the application of fair value measurements in the current market environment.

Who is the most important person in your office?

By Hal BeckerSo who do you think is the most important person in your office? If you answered yourself, deduct two points and then go look for a dose of humility!Right up front, point person, numero uno, supreme commander, the holiness who rules the office, yes, we are talking about your receptionist. This is the key ingredient to the office that lives and breathes customer service when compared to all the other ones that just say they believe in it or say they "give good service."

Solo 401(k) plans - great benefit for the sole proprietor

Solo-401(k) plans, designed for the sole proprietor, the proprietor's spouse, and partnerships whose only employees are self-employed partners and their spouses, are now permitted to offer participants flexible savings accounts with an after-tax Roth option as well as the traditional pre-tax option. Individuals in the plans may direct their savings to both accounts. But only a few of the major investment firms have begun to offer the Roth option.

Reduce litigation risks and costs with eDiscovery approach

By Ursula TalleyCompanies of all sizes are facing increased litigation risks and costs today. A great way to reduce those risks and costs is by adopting a proactive eDiscovery approach. If you're not sure what proactive eDiscovery means, this article not only offers a good definition, but also explains the trends that make proactive eDiscovery inevitable, how to implement a proactive solution that can save you money, and how to get started now.Getting a Handle on eDiscovery

Five tips for communicating the real value of your services

By John DoerrAre You Different?In the course of my work with all manner of professional service firms, I hear a very common lament. "We are becoming a commodity. The prospects just seem to buy on price. We are really good. How can I possibly separate myself from the crowd?"My usual response is, "What can make you special? Why are you different?"
Practice Management

A bad boss can send you to an early grave

By Dr. Travis BradberryIt seems there's always a steady supply of sympathy available for anyone stuck working under a bad boss. Most everyone I know has been there at one time or another, working under a tyrant who somehow manages to survive in this world without people skills. If you haven't had a boss like this, you should consider buying a lottery ticket--and I mean soon. You are that lucky.

Exceptional service is an exception to the rule

So, you don't communicate so good! How do you think people perceive you? Is it professional or is it just OK?As a business owner or a manager, you must remember that the people who work for you represent you as well. In fact they are you!Example: You have a bad meal or bad service in a restaurant and then what do you tell people - "Don't go there!" You blame the whole place for one person. You do not simply say, "Don't have Bob as your waiter," or, "Carol was a lousy hostess." You blame the entire establishment. One person is the business.

I'm not a salesperson . . . or am I?

By Lenann GardnerAs a thoracic (chest) surgeon, Aaron was used to working on hearts and lungs.He's a gifted surgeon, with a wonderful bedside manner, impeccable skills, and true caring for his patients' lives and families. But the truth was, his case volume was down, and so too was his income. What to do?Aaron was surprised to realize that he had a sales problem.


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