The General Business Advisor, A General Practitioner For Business

The General Business Advisor, A General Practitioner For Business

There are many types of business advisors—financial, legal, insurance, special projects, etc. —who can offer expertise in solving specific problems that inevitably face every business owner or budding entrepreneur.

Employing specialty advisors on an individual basis has value when the business owner has accurately determined what the specific problem is. However, many business owners struggle with the process of determining just exactly what that problem is!

Unlike most business owners who focus on the trees, the general business advisor focuses on the forest. The business owner may look at financial statements and decide that a cash flow crunch is caused by a problem with sales and marketing. So, he engages a sales and marketing specialist to come in and attack what he believes to be the problem. Unfortunately, sales and marketing may not be the root of the problem at all!

A business is a system, and any issue within the system is inextricably linked to other issues elsewhere in the system. Like a general practitioner in the field of medicine, a general business advisor can look at the big picture—the entire company—and see exactly how the various components are working together—from accounting to production to administration to sales, marketing, and IT. The business advisor understands how the components interrelate and where the true problem exists. Isolating one problem and bringing in a specialist to solve it is like putting a Band-Aid on a cut when you really need a complete physical. With a general business advisor, you obtain an accurate and an unbiased diagnosis on the entire enterprise. Only then can you develop and implement an effective strategy that will restore the business to optimal health.

How to Find a Business Advisor and What to look for: Choosing a general business advisor is a serious decision. It is important that you select a business advisor who is competent, experienced and has both integrity and expertise—an individual that you can trust in this newly formed fiduciary relationship.

The best way to find a good general business advisor is to reach out into your sphere of contacts. Talk to your other advisors—–your CPA, your attorney, your banker, and your insurance agent. Ask for referrals and set up appointments to meet with each candidate personally and look for the following:

• Sensitivity to the importance of confidentiality—–This is critical. Since an advisor will be privy to highly confidential information about you and your business, it is very important for you to discuss bonds of confidentiality with him. A signed confidentiality agreement is recommended.

• Non-compete policies—–Make sure that the candidate is willing to sign a non-compete agreement and to refrain from advising his direct competitors not only during the course of the engagement, but also for a certain period of time thereafter.

• Chemistry—–It’s not just for romantic relationships! There has to be certain chemistry with your advisor. This is someone you are going to work closely with to grow your business. You have to feel a connection and a sense of trust with this person. Never feel forced into making a decision at the first meeting. To gauge your level of comfort with your prospective advisor, meet with him more than once.

• Confidence—–Make sure that you have the level of confidence that you need in order to move forward, and that the person sitting across the desk from you is as passionate about what he or she is doing as you are about your business.

The Online Art Gallery: Gaining Momentum

The Online Art Gallery: Gaining Momentum

The Internet has expanded our world in many ways. Today, through the use of an online art gallery, we can buy, or just enjoy, works of art. If we are good enough, we can even sell our art work.

No one wants to be a starving artist, but can be hard for an up-and-coming artist to get enough people interested in his or her projects to want to purchase some of it. That’s only one of many reasons an online art gallery might be a godsend for those artists looking for their big break.

An online art gallery is a website that features art of various kinds. Whether the art itself is painting, sculpture, or any other form, the piece is first digitally photographed and then displayed on the website as a webpage image. Often, an online art gallery will display the works of several artists at once, or may offer several pieces from the same artist.

In return for this service, an online art gallery may make its money by receiving commissions from the sales of the work of the various artists. Usually, an agreement is tendered wherein any piece that is sold through the online art gallery is subject to a fee. The gallery withholds the fee once the art is sold and paid for.

This kind of arrangement works well for both parties. The artists can showcase their work to a broad audience, without the marketing expense having to come from their own pocket; the online art gallery benefits in that they collect a payment for the pieces that are sold and have a constant supply of art to draw in potential customers.

However, not all online art galleries use this type of arrangement. Some prefer to charge the artist a fee, which must be paid in advance. Generally, this fee is used to offset the bandwidth cost incurred by the site owners, as well as the cost for the website design itself. The good side of this is the artist will usually not have to pay a commission to the online art gallery once the sale is made.

An important added benefit to using an online art gallery is that the artist receives exposure as well. The online art gallery makes a profit only when people come to the website and buy from it. Because it is in their own best interest to do so, they will work hard at promoting their virtual space, which, in turn, promotes those artists showcased there. For the artists, this means more exposure, which can translate into more sales.

If you are interested in displaying your art work in such a manner, you should do some research as not every online art gallery is willing to feature the work of up-and-coming artists. Some of the more prestigious galleries prefer to focus on the works of more established artists.

Whether you are an artist, or simply an art connoisseur, you should browse the contents of an online art gallery. The level of quality and the sheer diversity of what you may find can surprise you.

What to Expect When You Get Your Tattoo

What to Expect When You Get Your Tattoo

To many people, tattoos are exotic and daring things to get into. It’s such a huge decision as the design, whatever it may be, will be permanent. Not only might this seem daunting but the actual process of getting a tattoo can be frightening to those who have never experienced it.

Most people know that tattoos are created with a needle that delivers ink into the skin by the use of a special tattoo gun or machine. Beyond that, many are clueless as to how the procedure might actually carry on. It is important to realize that every tattoo artist and parlor varies in their techniques.

The first thing to be prepared for is choosing a design. If you have a copy of something in particular, be prepared to discuss it with your tattoo artist. He or she may be able to make recommendations to make the image look its best on your skin.

If you do not already have a design, the tattoo artist can assist you. The design will depend on where you want the tattoo on your body and if you prefer all one color or multiple colors. The tattoo artist can assist with making decisions based on your personality, size preference for that tattoo and the aesthetics of the design.

Once the design has been decided upon, the tattoo artist creates a stencil. This stencil is laid out on the skin and traced. Some artists will draw the stencil straight on the skin freehanded. The general design can be visualized at this point on the skin.

When the design is decided upon, the tattoo process begins. This is where things can start to change a bit. Depending on the location where the tattoo will end up, the customer is typically seated in a position as comfortable as possible to make for easy access to the skin by the tattoo artist. Obviously the sitting position will vary accordingly.

The time frame is another variance. As is easily guessed extravagant, intricate and very large tattoos will take a longer amount of time than a smaller, simpler design. Tattoos that are excessively large, such as designs covering the entire back often require repeat visits to the tattoo parlor.

Generally, for an easy and small tattoo of one color, one can typically expect to it to take about an hour or less for the design. Some can take as little as thirty minutes. If there are a lot of color changes or intricacies the amount of time will increase.

Price can vary depending the geographical location of the tattoo parlor. Other factors that are reflected in the price include the size of the tattoo, difficulty and color variations. Many parlors charge by the hour with a general range of between $40 – $150 per hour, again depending on location and the design. For very large tattoos, prices might change accordingly switching from a per-hour fee to a set fee for the entire process.

Once the design is finished, expect to be taught how to care for the tattoo afterwards. It may be dressed in a bandage that will need proper care for the days following. The tattoo artist will discuss all after care instructions with the customer prior to letting them leave the parlor.

Getting a tattoo can seem a lot less daunting when you know what to expect. Getting to know your tattoo artist can help one feel more at ease with the whole procedure. Meeting the staff before hand might also go along way to ensure comfort with those working around you.