Gust Launch

While I’ve been a member for several years over at Gust I was totally unaware of their “Gust Launch” service which is a one stop shop to creating your startup for a very reasonable price. I highly reccomend it and this product endorsement is totally NOT compensated in any way shape or form.

Source: Gust Launch

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Google Says They Make Changes Every Day!

Source: Google Says They Make Changes Every Day!

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Dealing with Negative Search Results: How to Get Rid of the Bad Stuff

How to Get Rid of Search Results You Don’t Like

As a business owner, there’s nothing worse than discovering your business has a bad search result associated with it. You work hard to ensure your customers are satisfied with your products and service. You work even harder to make your business a success. Unfortunately, they’re common in business transaction and interactions. We’re in the age of information, and people are eager to share their opinions online. Sometimes, these opinions are not positive.

Fortunately, there are a handful of techniques and strategies, used primarily by companies in the online reputation management industry, to make negative content vanish. Similar to SEO (search engine optimization), which uses strategies to make your business more noticeable, Reverse SEO uses a variety of techniques to make a particular site less noticeable. This is the backbone of how ORM (online reputation management) experts mitigate the impact of negative content about your brand. Essentially, there are two ways of doing this: removal and suppression.

Removing Negative Content Completely

If you notice a bad review, defamatory remarks, or other negative content showing up at the top of search results when you search for your name, your first instinct might be to try and have it removed. Removing a link from the internet permanently disassociates it with your name, and it makes sure consumers never see it again. It’s effective, but it’s hard to do. Links to negative content will be content you control, or content that someone else controls. Obviously, removing content on a page you own is much easier than one you don’t.

Source: Dealing with Negative Search Results: How to Get Rid of the Bad Stuff

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How to Value a Business

The Certified Entrepreneurial Advisor (CEA) program is designed to empower small businesses owners and those who advise them. It consists of a graduate-level practical education in how to start, manage and grow a small business. Completion of the twelve CEA subject areas equips graduates with powerful, practical tools, techniques and strategies aimed at small business success.

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12 Ethical Principles for Business Executives – Exemplary Business Ethics & Leadership

Ethical values, translated into active language establishing standards or rules describing the kind of behavior an ethical person should and should not engage in, are ethical principles. The following list of principles incorporate the characteristics and values that most people associate with ethical behavior. 

1. HONESTY. Ethical executives are honest and truthful in all their dealings and they do not deliberately mislead or deceive others by misrepresentations, overstatements, partial truths, selective omissions, or any other means.

2. INTEGRITY. Ethical executives demonstrate personal integrity and the courage of their convictions by doing what they think is right even when there is great pressure to do otherwise; they are principled, honorable and upright; they will fight for their beliefs. They will not sacrifice principle for expediency, be hypocritical, or unscrupulous.

3. PROMISE-KEEPING & TRUSTWORTHINESS. Ethical executives are worthy of trust. They are candid and forthcoming in supplying relevant information and correcting misapprehensions of fact, and they make every reasonable effort to fulfill the letter and spirit of their promises and commitments. They do not interpret agreements in an unreasonably technical or legalistic manner in order to rationalize non-compliance or create justifications for escaping their commitments.

4. LOYALTY. Ethical executives are worthy of trust, demonstrate fidelity and loyalty to persons and institutions by friendship in adversity, support and devotion to duty; they do not use or disclose information learned in confidence for personal advantage. They safeguard the ability to make independent professional judgments by scrupulously avoiding undue influences and conflicts of interest. They are loyal to their companies and colleagues and if they decide to accept other employment, they provide reasonable notice, respect the proprietary information of their former employer, and refuse to engage in any activities that take undue advantage of their previous positions.

5. FAIRNESS. Ethical executives and fair and just in all dealings; they do not exercise power arbitrarily, and do not use overreaching nor indecent means to gain or maintain any advantage nor take undue advantage of another’s mistakes or difficulties. Fair persons manifest a commitment to justice, the equal treatment of individuals, tolerance for and acceptance of diversity, the they are open-minded; they are willing to admit they are wrong and, where appropriate, change their positions and beliefs.

6. CONCERN FOR OTHERS. Ethical executives are caring, compassionate, benevolent and kind; they like the Golden Rule, help those in need, and seek to accomplish their business objectives in a manner that causes the least harm and the greatest positive good.

7. RESPECT FOR OTHERS. Ethical executives demonstrate respect for the human dignity, autonomy, privacy, rights, and interests of all those who have a stake in their decisions; they are courteous and treat all people with equal respect and dignity regardless of sex, race or national origin.

8. LAW ABIDING. Ethical executives abide by laws, rules and regulations relating to their business activities.

9. COMMITMENT TO EXCELLENCE. Ethical executives pursue excellence in performing their duties, are well informed and prepared, and constantly endeavor to increase their proficiency in all areas of responsibility.

10. LEADERSHIP. Ethical executives are conscious of the responsibilities and opportunities of their position of leadership and seek to be positive ethical role models by their own conduct and by helping to create an environment in which principled reasoning and ethical decision making are highly prized.

11. REPUTATION AND MORALE. Ethical executives seek to protect and build the company’s good reputation and the morale of its employees by engaging in no conduct that might undermine respect and by taking whatever actions are necessary to correct or prevent inappropriate conduct of others.

12. ACCOUNTABILITY. Ethical executives acknowledge and accept personal accountability for the ethical quality of their decisions and omissions to themselves, their colleagues, their companies, and their communities.

Source: 12 Ethical Principles for Business Executives – Exemplary Business Ethics & Leadership

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Can Texting Create a Binding Contract? – UpCounsel Blog

If you’re discussing a deal in an electronic message simple statements, while harmless in intent, could cause serious problems. Courts in recent years have decided that in some cases an email exchange can constitute a binding contract. Since communicating via smartphones became ubiquitous, another question has arisen: whether you could enter into a contractual obligation – even inadvertently – by sending a text. A recent case in Massachusetts suggests that, too, is a possibility.

The court held that because the text message was “signed,” there could be an enforceable contract.
The Text That Launched a Lawsuit
The case in question, St. John’s Holdings v. Two Electronics, involved negotiations for the purchase of a commercial building. The buyer’s broker had emailed the seller’s broker an unsigned Letter of Intent (LOI) as an attachment. The LOI, which the parties intended to be binding, had to be signed by both parties. The seller’s broker followed up by texting the buyer’s broker to ask that the LOI be signed and that a deposit be made.

Specifically, the text said:

“Steve. [Seller] wants [buyer] to sign first, with a check, and then he will sign. Normally, the seller signs last or second. Not trying to be stupid or contrary, but that is the way it normally works. Can [buyer] sign today and get it to me today? Tim.”

The buyer then signed the LOI and provided a check to the seller. But on the same day, the seller accepted a third party’s offer for the property and refused to countersign the LOI. Rather than look for another property, the buyer decided to sue.

Source: Can Texting Create a Binding Contract? – UpCounsel Blog

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Organizational Design: Why You Should Not Have a President and COO | Organizational Physics by Lex Sisney


(L-R) Bertram Cooper (Robert Morse), Roger Sterling (John Slattery), Don Draper (Jon Hamm), Lane Pryce (Jared Harris) and Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) – Mad Men – Season 5, Episode 5 – Photo Credit: Ron Jaffe/AMC

It’s a classic tale. Your company’s driven, visionary founder manages to lead your start up to takeoff and hit rapid growth mode. But then something happens, and everything starts to bog down. Those former start up struggles and early wins turn into a whole new set of challenges: running the business at scale. At about this time in an organization’s lifecycle, conversations in the board room and around the water cooler start to focus on the founder. See if you’ve said or heard any of these before: Our founder has great energy and ideas (along with some really dumb ideas) but we still can’t seem to get our act together. It’s no secret our founder isn’t an Operations person. We need to either replace our founder or support her with someone experienced who can run day-to-day operations and keep the trains on time. What we need is a President/COO. Then the founder/CEO can be Mr. Outside and the President/COO can be Mr. Inside. Does any of that sound familiar? I bet it does. On the surface, having a President/COO can make a lot of sense. Every organization needs stability, structure, and experience if it is going to scale up. The approach is certainly popular. “President and COO” titles are so common—throw a stapler in the air at your local office park and you’re bound to hit one on the head. But hiring a President/COO to solve the “founder” problem typically brings just a new set of problems, setbacks, and even disasters. In many cases I’ve seen, the new President/COO was a sure bet on paper but failed replicate past successes in a new environment. In another common scenario, you’ll find that soon after joining, the new President/COO will get into conflict with the founder/CEO about who really runs the business. When this happens, the culture quickly erodes into “old guard” vs. “new guard” and execution speed bogs down across the board from all the in-fighting and politics. There’s also a little appreciated but equally severe problem that happens when the founder leaves the business too soon, now that “the professionals are in charge” or because “it’s just not that much fun around here anymore,” and the company fails to capitalize on its true potential over time. While hiring and integrating capable senior leaders into the organization is needed and necessary to scale your business (I’ll show you how to do this here), the popular approach of having a President/COO to oversee business execution usually turns out to be a fix that is much worse than the original problem. I’ve coached over 50 founder-led, high-growth companies to increasing revenues and profits without a traditional President/COO and without consolidating business functions under a few key leaders like a President, COO, and/or CFO. I can say with confidence that there is a better way to build great leadership to help an organization scale, without the drawbacks of the popular approaches. The answer lies in understanding the Leadership Team model. With a strong functional Leadership Team, you avoid the typical problems of the President and COO approach in favor of a distributed, transparent Leadership Team process. Done well, it’s the difference between a monarchy embroiled in power and succession battles and a functional representative democracy. I’ve seen it work over and over again. And it all starts with how you think about what’s really needed to scale your business.

Continue Reading at the Source: Organizational Design: Why You Should Not Have a President and COO | Organizational Physics by Lex Sisney

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