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Starting the Right Business for You

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Starting the Right Business for You

Starting a business is thrilling, but there’s a lot to figure out.

Do I need to relocate? How will I finance the operation? What kind of insurance will I need?

If you’re in the early stages you’ll need to research and study a lot. One of the biggest decisions is choosing which industry to get into.

A lot of business ideas excite you. You could do a bookkeeping business, start a cafe, or run a clothing store.

There’s a ton of options, but which one is right for you.

Three simple questions will help you narrow your options. Take your time answering and think deeply about them.

Make a list for each question. Then compare the lists. If one item overlaps in all three lists, it might just be the right business for you to start.

What are you good at?

Every person is a complex combination of genetics, upbringing, personality, skill set, and more.

In other words, you’re unique and bring something special to the table.

A lot of people don’t perceive their own strengths. They’re used to their skills and consider them everyday activities.

A gifted singer thinks everyone can hit notes and do scales. A handyman assumes everyone can fix things around the house.

The truth is a ton of people cannot do the things you do.

We don’t see our gifts because we compare ourselves with the best.

Teachers compare themselves to the best teacher they ever had and think, “I’m awful at teaching!”

Writers compare themselves to their favorite authors and think, “I stink at writing!”

Compare your abilities to the everyday person. If you put your gifts in perspective you might realize that you’re actually pretty good at something.

One way to discover your strengths is to ask those who know you best. You might be surprised by their answers.

Another way to find your strengths is to ask yourself what you enjoy doing. What do you spend your time on? Is there a hobby you like?

Remember, you’ll improve your skills with experience and education. The question right now is what are you good at compared to most people.

Once you answer this, you’ll start to see yourself going into certain industries.

What needs can you meet?

Fulfilling a need is one of the pillars of a successful business.

Think about your current surroundings. Are there certain needs that jump out at you?

Let’s say you live in a medium-income neighborhood with a lot of pet owners. There might be a huge need for pet-sitters.

Are there needs that you personally wish were met? Do you wish there was a vegan restaurant around? Do you wish you could hire someone to mow your lawn?

Try to recall past conversations with family, friends, and locals. Do they express needs you can meet?

Maybe they’re tired of bars and wish a brewery would open in town. Maybe they wish their favorite local business had a user-friendly website.

Once you start looking for needs, you’ll start to see them everywhere. Houses need cleaned. Students need tutored. Cars need repaired.

It might be easier to select a business if you find a need first, then find a way to answer that need. Rather than finding a skill, then trying to meet a need with it.

I recommend taking both paths to generate as many business ideas as possible.

What resources are available to you?

One giant factor that will help you choose a business is looking at the resources available to you.

What does your network of friends look like? What industries are they in?

Sometimes you don’t have to create a new business, you can join an existing one and expand it.

Or you can combine talents to create a business. If you have friends with certain skills sets, consider pairing up with them.

Let’s say you’re awesome at repairing cellphones and laptops, but you’re not good at sales. If your friend is good at sales, you could partner with them.

Also, consider your circumstances. If you’re a stay-at-home mother who’s homeschooling, you might want to try making money online.

If you have a great living space, consider starting an Airbnb. Or if you have an awesome car, think about doing Uber or Lyft.

Do you already have materials that can be used for a business? Perhaps you own property. Take some time to think about a business that would thrive on that real estate.

When you take the time to consider what’s at your fingertips, it helps narrow in on the right business for you.

Compare all three lists

Finally, compare your answers.

Is there something you’re good at, that can answer a need, and you have the resources for?

That’s the golden ticket.

That means you have the ability to perform, the potential to make money, and the means to accomplish the task.

What business do you think is right for you?

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The 5 Most Anticipated Luxury Hotel Opening in 2020

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Global luxury travel network Virtuoso® is sharing its list of the most exciting properties around the world debuting over the next six months. From the eternally popular such as France and Mexico to the more exotic, including Japan and Botswana, these hotels and resorts are setting new standards in the ultra-competitive luxury space. On Virtuoso’s must-see list, historic icons meet sleek beach resorts while lodges nestled in nature complement city retreats. The common thread amongst them is that these properties will delight guests with their distinctive character, varied experiences and superior service.

1. Cheval Blanc Paris, France – Opening Spring 2020

Located in the heart of the City of Light, steps from the Louvre and the Marais, Cheval Blanc Paris combines historical, cultural and contemporary features for an authentic Parisian experience. Floor-to-ceiling windows in the 26 rooms and 46 suites offer views of famed landmarks and city life. Virtuoso exclusives: upgrade upon arrival if available, daily full American breakfast for two, fast-track immigration, complimentary round-trip private transfer with VIP meet and greet, spa access, complimentary Wi-Fi and early check-in and late check-out if available.

2. One & Only Mandarina, Mexico – Opening June 2020

Set in a lush, beachfront jungle setting, the intimate resort boasts 104 standalone villas and treehouses – each with a private pool. Guests will have access to innovative culinary experiences, a lively beach club, wellness programming and a playground of adventures on land and sea. Virtuoso exclusives: upgrade on arrival if available, daily breakfast for two, $100 USD resort credit, complimentary Wi-Fi, early check-in and late check-out if available.

3. The Tokyo EDITION, Toranomon, Japan – Opening June 2020

Located near Tokyo’s finest neighborhoods and attractions, the property will feature 206 rooms with stunning views of the city’s skyline, including 21 suites and a penthouse. A signature restaurant, cocktail bar and wellness spa will cultivate a unique, luxurious atmosphere. Virtuoso exclusives: upgrade upon arrival if available, daily breakfast for two, $100 USD hotel credit, complimentary Wi-Fi, and early check-in and late check-out if available.

4. Villa Igiea, a Rocco Forte Hotel, Italy – Opening June 2020

A former refuge for royalty and Hollywood’s elite, Villa Igiea occupies a unique location overlooking the azure waters of the Gulf of Palermo. After a restoration, the iconic palazzo will showcase a fresh design while maintaining its timeless splendor. Virtuoso exclusives: upgrade on arrival if available, daily breakfast for two, $100 USD food and beverage credit, complimentary Wi-Fi, and early check-in and late check-out if available.

5. Xigera, Botswana – Opening June 2020

Xigera is defined by exceptional service, with 105 staff looking after just 24 guests in an intimate, exclusive bush experience. The solar-powered lodge offers 12 suspended suites surrounded by ancient trees and flood plains, showcasing bespoke works by Africa’s most exciting young artists and craftspeople. Virtuoso exclusives to be announced.

Virtuoso’s long-running Hotels & Resorts program has earned a reputation for launching new hotels, courtesy of its successful Preview initiative. The Virtuoso collection offers more than 1,400 outstanding hotels, resorts, spas, lodges, luxury camps and villas in over 100 countries. When booked by a Virtuoso advisor, either directly or at www.virtuoso.com, each property offers exclusive benefits valued at more than (U.S.) $500 per stay.

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US Vows 100% Tariffs on French Champagne, Cheese, Handbags Over Digital tax

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Image via Shutterstock
By David Lawder and Andrea Shalal

The US government on Monday said it may slap punitive duties of up to 100 percent on $2.4 billion in imports from France of Champagne, handbags, cheese and other products, after concluding that France’s new digital services tax would harm US tech companies.

The US Trade Representative’s office said its “Section 301” investigation found that the French tax was “inconsistent with prevailing principles of international tax policy, and is unusually burdensome for affected US companies,” including Alphabet Inc’s Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon.com.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the government was exploring whether to open similar investigations into the digital services taxes of Austria, Italy and Turkey.

“The USTR is focused on countering the growing protectionism of EU member states, which unfairly targets US companies,” Lighthizer said. His statement made no mention of proposed digital taxes in Canada or Britain.

The US trade agency said it would collect public comments through Jan. 14 on its proposed tariff list as well as the option of imposing fees or restrictions on French services, with a public hearing scheduled for January 7.

It did not specify an effective date for the proposed 100% duties.

CHAMPAGNE, ROUGE AND GRUYERE

The list targets some products that were spared from 25 percent tariffs imposed by the United States over disputed European Union aircraft subsidies, including sparkling wines, handbags and make-up preparations – products that would hit French luxury goods giant and cosmetics maker L’Oreal hard.

Gruyere cheese, also spared from the USTR aircraft tariffs levied in October, featured prominently in the list of French products targeted for 100 percent duties, along with numerous other cheeses.

The findings won favor from US lawmakers and US tech industry groups, who have long argued that the tax unfairly targets US firms.

“The French digital services tax is unreasonable, protectionist and discriminatory,” Senators Charles Grassley and Ron Wyden, the top Republican and Democrat, respectively, on the Senate Finance Committee, said in a joint statement.

Spokespeople for the French embassy and the European Union delegation in Washington could not immediately be reached for comment.

But prior to the release of the USTR’s report, a French official said that France would dispute the trade agency’s findings, repeating Paris’ contention that the digital tax is not aimed specifically at US technology companies.

“We will not give up on taxation” of digital firms, the official said.

France’s 3 percent levy applies to revenue from digital services earned by firms with more than €25 million ($27.86 million) in French revenue and €750 million (£644 million) worldwide.

The USTR’s report and proposed tariff list follow months of negotiations between French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin over a global overhaul of digital tax rules.

The two struck a compromise in August at a G7 summit in France that would refund US firms the difference between the French tax and a new mechanism being drawn up through the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

But Trump never formally endorsed that deal and declined to say whether his French tariff threat was off the table.

Reuters

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Stocks Just Spiked to Record Highs After China Budged on a Key US Trade Demand

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According to a Fox Business report, China “issued a document to ‘effectively curb’ violations of intellectual property rights such as trademarks and copyrights.” This move is aimed at increasing the chances of a trade deal between the two largest economies. The S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average, and Nasdaq Composite Indexes reached all-time highs after China’s statement.

Adam Phillips, director of portfolio strategy for EP Wealth Advisors, said “I don’t think we would be seeing these types of deals if the outlook for markets and the economy weren’t favorable. This is one additional piece we can look at to see the outlook for markets is a positive one.”

Bloomberg reported that equities climbed across Asia, “led by those in Hong Kong, where local elections brought a landslide victory to pro-democracy candidates. The dollar gained versus the euro and yen.”

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