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Big Ideas for Small Business® has been dedicated to helping small businesses succeed for over 20 years. The brainchild of Barbara Weltman, a respected corporate speaker, contributing editor, author of more than a dozen books from major publishers, sought-after expert media source, newsletter publisher and more than ever, a trusted advocate for small business owners. Big Ideas for Small Business® is a haven for entrepreneurs looking to succeed.

Idea of the Day®

December 04, 2016

Event Marketing

So you’re planning a marketing campaign to launch a new product or hold an event to connect with customers and prospects. How you market your event can make a difference. Event marketing is all about developing a themed display, exhibit, or presentation. According to NCC, social media and offline efforts combine for success. For example, according to one study, 41% of people said word of mouth prompted them to search online.

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Big Ideas For Your Business

Resources For Your Business
  • Planning for Year-End Bonuses

    Has 2016 been a good year for your business? The time is growing short for you to address the matter of year-end bonuses. According to the 2016 Holiday Bonus and Hiring Survey by Accounting Principals, 75% of HR and hiring managers of the companies polled are planning to give bonuses this year (up from 67% last year). The average amount is over $1,000 per employee. While this survey obviously addresses bonuses for larger firms, small businesses may want to take note. Whether you give the average or some other amount, here are some things to consider. Determine your budget for bonuses […]

  • Holiday Giving at Work

    The old expression “I gave at the office” is something to consider at this time of the year. Owners are thinking about what to give to employees, managers are mulling over gifts to those they supervise, and rank-and-file employees are considering giving to each other and to owners and managers. Here are some office-gifting considerations. Owners to staff When owners are considering holiday gifts to employees, jelly-of-the-month club won’t cut it. Employees want monetary gifts. The matter of year-end bonuses are covered in the next blog on my site. Managers to staff According to a recent Accountemps survey 63% thought it […]

  • Gratitude on this Thanksgiving

    Gratitude is defined as “the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.” There’s been research showing that practicing gratitude can be beneficial to your health and satisfaction. On this Thanksgiving, I’m feeling a lot of gratitude for many things and I’d like to share them. Here are some famous quotations on the subject. My family Family and friends come first, of course. It’s so pleasurable to be able to share the holiday and to appreciate family and friends. “The home is the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose, and that is […]

  • Cash is tight and you are in a quandary about whether to pay your quarterly employment taxes to the federal government or pay your supplier for inventory you need to stay in business. A rock-and-a-hard-place barely describes the dilemma. Here are some thoughts on what to do. Understand your exposure for unpaid employment taxes A “responsible person,” who is an owner or other person authorized to make payment decisions, is 100% personally liable for willfully failing to pay trust fund taxes (withholding from employees’ wages for income taxes and their share of FICA). The trust fund recovery penalty (TFRP) may […]

  • The Kaiser Family Foundation reported that 83% of large employers (200 or more employees) offered wellness programs and that 46% of small businesses also offered wellness programs. Companies of all sizes offer these programs to encourage employees to get and stay healthy, which has the effect of reducing absenteeism, increasing productivity, and reducing the company’s health care costs. If you’re a small business owner, here are some of the considerations in deciding whether to start, expand, or change your wellness programs in 2017 so you can get ready now. Types of wellness programs The law does not require you to […]

  • Many small businesses have 401(k) plans in place to help employees save for retirement. And even solo entrepreneurs may use such tax-advantaged retirement plans to shelter their profits and build up a retirement nest egg for themselves. Looking toward 2017, now’s the time for certain actions to be taken. Here are some to consider if you have a 401(k) plan or are thinking of setting one up. For the business Now is the time that employees must commit to their 2017 elective deferrals. The maximum contribution amounts for 2017 remain unchanged from 2016: $18,000 ($24,000 for those who will be at least […]

  • Congratulations to Donald Trump, who is now the President-Elect. With the election in our rear view mirror, now’s the time to focus on the future. Here are some of the areas of concern to me, and what’s ahead for small business. With clear control by a single party in Washington, expect to see considerable action within the new President’s first 100 days. Regulations The number one issue identified by small business owners as an impediment to growth has been federal regulations. According to Trump’s position on regulations, he’ll work to “reform the entire regulatory code to ensure that we keep […]

  • A recent 12-day vacation in China gave me some insight into what’s going on there. The Great Wall was truly great. And the break from my work routine was very helpful. The trip also gave me the opportunity to learn a thing or two about business in China. Internet access It’s easy to get on the Internet in China. There are a lot of free connections in airports, hotels, and malls. However, there are considerable restrictions on what you can view online. You cannot use Google, Facebook, Twitter, and many other sites we routinely use for business here; these sites […]

  • The Language of ACA

    When then-majority leader Nancy Pelosi said “we have to pass the bill [Affordable Care Act, or ACA for short] so you can find out what is in it,” she wasn’t kidding. The law, which is now more than 6 years old, contains confusing terminology that we’re still trying to decipher. What’s more, there are significant conflicts in the terms used for ACA compared with other federal laws. Here are some examples … and hopefully some clarity. Full time The meaning of the term “full time” is essential for ACA because it is used for determining Applicable Large Employer (ALE) status. […]

  • I’m proud to say it’s the 23rd year of the original publication, and it’s all new for 2016 returns and year-round tax planning. As had been my practice, I’ve written my own book review to explain the purpose of the book, what’s new, and what’s ahead. Why small business owners need a tax book If you are like the vast majority of small business owners (86%), you use a CPA or other tax pro to prepare your business returns. You may even work with tax experts on specific matters, such as succession planning, inventory management, and payroll. However, it’s my belief […]


Resources For Your Business

Tracking Personal Time Off by OPEN Forum

Small Business Taxes and Spending by OPEN Forum


December 04, 2016


Events in December 2016

barbara’s books

  • The ultimate money-saving tax guide for the small business owner.   J.K. Lasser's Small Business Taxes is designed to help business owners make sense of their taxes and file correctly, on time, without over- or under-paying.  Written in a straightforward and accessible style, this reliable resource offers a complete overview of small business tax planning and provides you with the information needed to make tax-smart decisions throughout the year. Focusing on strategies that help you use deductions and tax credits effectively, shield business income, and maximize other aspects of small business taxes, this practical guide will show you how your actions in business today can affect your bottom line from a tax perspective tomorrow.
  • The complete guide to all deductions and credits for individual taxpayers.   J.K. Lasser's 1001 Deductions and Tax Breaks shows you just how much money you can save on your taxes—legally—simply by taking advantage of what's out there. Millions of Americans overpay their taxes by billions of dollars every year, because constantly evolving laws and regulations make keeping track of deductions and breaks next to impossible for the everyday taxpayer. This book helps you put a stop to overpayment so you can keep more of your hard-earned money. Fully updated to reflect the latest rulings and laws — including an e-supplement with the latest tax developments from the IRS and Congress — this book answers all of your "Can I claim…" questions with guidance from the nation's most trusted tax advisors.
  • Tax facts and strategies every self-employed person needs to know As a self-employed person you have to handle many, if not all, of the aspects of running your business. J.K. Lasser's Guide to Self-Employment is intended to help you with some business aspects with which you may not be familiar—but which have a great impact on your bottom line. It skillfully focuses on taxes as well as many legal and financial matters that may pertain to your business.3
  • Smooth Failing - Living Edition

    This is the Living Edition of Smooth Failing. New stories from business leaders on their business failures and the lessons learned will be added regularly at no additional cost. Alerts will be sent out automatically when each new version is available. Specific requests and challenges can be submitted by the reader for future consideration and these will dictate how often and how many additional stories will be made available.
  • Small Business Survival Book

    12 surefire ways for your business to survive and thrive! Owning a small business can be a fulfilling and financially rewarding experience, but to be successful, you must know what to do while the business is up and running, and, most importantly, what to do when the business runs into trouble. This book is definitely part of what you need to succeed!
  • As Vicki Raeburn of Dun & Bradstreet notes in the forward, "...the successful creation of credit by small business has a significant effect on one of the most important business drivers, namely cash flow. ...     [This book has] the information needed to understand and build business credit."


  • " I don't want to miss it!
    I just wanted to reach out and give you a very big, truly heartfelt "thank you" for all the work that you do to help small business owners grow and succeed. More specifically, I wanted to offer you some praise for your blog posts and Idea of the Day®. My email inbox gets so very cluttered. And honestly, on most days I will do a wholesale delete of many, many messages. But I literally stop and specifically look for your name and your small business Idea of the Day®. I don't want to miss it! In fact, I look forward to reading it daily (even on weekends!) because I know I'm going to learn something new that saves me money, time or just adds to my professional knowledge in a way that helps me help others too. So thank you, thank you, thank you for your efforts! ”

    -Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, The Money Coach

  • " Getting your daily email is like getting an MBA in small business!
    Thank you for finding this important information. Getting your daily email is like getting an MBA in small business. ”

    -J. S. Budnik

  • " Thank You, Barbara!
    "Thank you, Barbara Weltman, for all of your articles and tax advice to small business owners! All the best." ”

    -Shane Madigan

  • " Thanks for providing such useful information!
    I follow your blog religiously for the great tips you provide. I love the new look. It makes me smile to see that your blog got an update.  Thanks for providing such useful information. ”

    -Lee Drozak

  • " Barbara Weltman has been an advocate,
    public speaker, and resource for small business news since the release of her first book, J.K. Lasser’s Tax Deductions for Small Business, in 1995. Since then she has run her website, her Big Ideas for Small Business® newsletter, and her blog, not to mention written over a dozen books. Ms. Weltman is on this list twice because for many business owners, it is easier to scroll through her Twitter feed for trending topics and news events than search her website. However, if you don’t take a minute to read her newsletters or blog — you’re missing out. newsletters or blog. ”

    -Meredith Wood, Fundera Ledger

  • " Great segment!!!
    Barbara Weltman is one smart cookie - I follow her on Twitter, and her content is always interesting and informative. ”

    -An eBay Radio listener - purplejaime1976

  • " Absolutely love your Idea of the Day®
    it’s BRIEF, concise and timely. Funny, I do a quick scan of my bloated mail box, quickly deleting what I feel is a time waster. But I NEVER delete Idea of the Day® until I've first opened it. Both you and Napoleon Hill's Thought for the day ALWAYS get read. You’re in terrific company. Thanks. ”

    -Don Aronowitz


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