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  5.    <title>Small Business Transition Blog</title>
  6.    <link></link>
  7.    <description>The goal of the Small Business Transition Blog Site is to improve the small business owner's odds of business survival with tips, links and tools focused on the needs of the small business owners improving their efficiency &amp; productivity.</description>
  8.    <language>en-us</language>
  9.    <managingEditor>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</managingEditor>
  10.    <webMaster>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</webMaster>
  11.    <copyright>MCL &amp; Associates, Inc. All Rights Reservesd 2014 - 2015.</copyright>
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  13.      <title>Better Business Insights: understanding your business data</title>
  14.      <pubDate>Sun, 29 Mar 2015 11:09:36 -0400</pubDate>
  15.      <link></link>
  16.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  17.      <description><![CDATA[It used to be that if you wanted to open a business, you would find a good location with a lot of foot traffic, hang a sign above your doorway, wait for people to poke their head through the threshold to see what was inside, and rely on luck, circumstance and word-of-mouth.
  19. No more.  As anyone who has successfully run one can tell you, being a small business owner requires you to become a jack-off-all-trades. You are forced by sheer necessity to learn skill-sets outside of your core area of expertise: Federal and State business law, contract negotiations, accounting and accounting principles, public relations, graphic design, online marketing, programming, and a host of other esoteric and mundane skills for which you have only a passing interest or worse yet no real interest at all.
  20. ]]></description>
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  23.      <title>Small Business “Coaches”: Solution or Snake-Oil?</title>
  24.      <pubDate>Sun, 22 Mar 2015 19:51:52 GMT</pubDate>
  25.      <link></link>
  26.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  27.      <description><![CDATA[Here are a few tips for all those considering business coaches.]]></description>
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  30.      <title>“Shark Tank”: Neither Symptom or Cause</title>
  31.      <pubDate>Sat, 28 Feb 2015 08:32:38 GMT</pubDate>
  32.      <link></link>
  33.      <author>Mark Lefcowitz</author>
  34.      <description><![CDATA[A small editorial by Dan Beyers (Washington Post, February 22, 2015) caught my attention about why businesses fail. The main thrust of the piece is that our obsession with the big score, quick-in/quick-out, and huckster approach to business — what Beyer’s refers to as the “Shark Tank world” — is leading to more business failures than business successes.<br><br>]]></description>
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  37.      <title>In God We Trust; all others must bring valid data</title>
  38.      <pubDate>Sun, 8 Feb 2015 06:34:35 GMT</pubDate>
  39.      <link></link>
  40.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  41.      <description><![CDATA[Before he retired as CEO of Sara Lee Bakery in 2003, Barry Beracha apparently kept a sign on his desk reading: “In God We Trust; all others must bring data.  Widely attributed to W. Edwards Deming, but never definitively verified, it is probably one of the most repeatedly parroted phrases in the business transformation and continuous process improvement field, and one that is just as equally misinterpreted.<br><br>The fact that Demming repeatedly eschewed total reliance of management decision-making to the blind-eye, button-counting approach to statistical probability for which he is so often credited, is ironical, to say the least.<br>]]></description>
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  44.      <title>The High Risk of Small Business Tunnel Vision</title>
  45.      <pubDate>Thu, 8 Jan 2015 04:37:49 GMT</pubDate>
  46.      <link></link>
  47.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  48.      <description><![CDATA[Anyone making a quick word search on the Web for a key to "small business success" invariably finds the obvious, the trite, and the obsolete.<br><br>The advice ends up falling into one of a dozen or so familiar categories. For the sake of space and brevity, I only list a few:<br>]]></description>
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  51.      <title>Small Business Mentoring (Part 3)</title>
  52.      <pubDate>Thu, 8 Jan 2015 04:36:23 GMT</pubDate>
  53.      <link></link>
  54.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  55.      <description><![CDATA[The Federal Small Business Administration (SBA) is the primary source of Federal assistance and outreach to the small<br>business community. Each of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and all US territories has small business support to one<br>extent or another.  The SBA defines a small business as an entity that is independently owned and operated, organized for<br>profit, and which is not dominant in its field. Depending on the industry size standard eligibility criteria, SBA bases its decision<br>whether a business qualifies as a small business upon either the average number of employees for the preceding twelve months,<br>or on sales volume averaged over the past three-year period.<br>]]></description>
  56.    </item>
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  58.      <title>Small Business Mentoring (Part 2)</title>
  59.      <pubDate>Thu, 8 Jan 2015 04:35:14 GMT</pubDate>
  60.      <link></link>
  61.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  62.      <description><![CDATA[There is no time when small business owners aren’t busy solving a problem of one sort or another. The owner is the business, and vice versa. Even at rest, the businessperson is very likely thinking of their business.  This leads to an interesting contradiction: on one hand the small business owner is the boss-both operationally and legally the highest ranking individual in their very small universe-and conversely, profoundly aware that a single unintentional misstep could spell financial disaster and the end to all their efforts.<br><br>The entrepreneur’s own personality and circumstance will determine how they deal with this reality. A lot depends on what motivated the entrepreneur to become an entrepreneur in the first place. Traditionally, these have been identified as:<br>]]></description>
  63.    </item>
  64.    <item>
  65.      <title>Small Business Mentoring (Part 1)</title>
  66.      <pubDate>Thu, 8 Jan 2015 04:34:29 GMT</pubDate>
  67.      <link></link>
  68.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  69.      <description><![CDATA[Everybody thinks they want to be Warren Buffet, or at least to have a close approximation of his personal wealth. He is the favorite poster boy for every self-styled, rags-to-riches, guaranteed, you-can-trust-me, success guru and motivational speaker currently in vogue. <br><br>Reality check: none of us are, or ever will be Mr. Buffet.  Unfortunately, relatively few of us have Mr. Buffet’s God-given talent to retain and process complex business information, the coolness under pressure that allows him to make consistently rational, calculated business decisions based on facts rather than emotion, or his obvious drive as a young man to succeed in the business world. And sadder yet, most of us would not take the time, the effort, or the shear drudgery necessary to become an imitation Warren Buffet, even if we could.<br><br>]]></description>
  70.    </item>
  71.    <item>
  72.      <title>Becoming a Small Business Card-Counter</title>
  73.      <pubDate>Thu, 8 Jan 2015 04:33:01 GMT</pubDate>
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  76.      <author>[email protected] (Mark Lefcowitz)</author>
  77.      <description><![CDATA[According to the most current U.S. Small Business Administration 23 million small businesses in America account for 54% of all U.S. sales.  They provide 55% of all jobs and 66% of all net new jobs since the 1970s.  The 600,000 plus franchised small businesses in the U.S. account for 40% of all retail sales and provide jobs for some 8 million people. <br><br>Moreover, the small business sector is growing rapidly. While corporate America has been "downsizing", the rate of small business "start-ups" has grown, and the rate for small business failures has declined.  The number of small businesses in the United States has increased 49% since 1982. Since 1990, as big business eliminated 4 million jobs, small businesses added 8 million new jobs.  The growth of the internet, and the movement away from manufacturing to service-oriented business has significantly fueled this trend.  With the advent of the personal computer and the exponential explosion of the internet, it is easier to start and run a small business operation from virtually any geographic location!<br>]]></description>
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