The new year has only just begun, but it's already proving to be another interesting one for Canadian small and medium businesses (SMBs). While economic uncertainty and the changing political landscape are making it difficult to understand the challenges that lie ahead, one thing remains clear: Canadian entrepreneurs who are embracing technology -- and ecommerce, in particular -- are more diversified and feel better equipped to face 2017.
I have always approached achieving a work-life balance like investing for the long-term. Just as market volatility means every day can't generate gains for your investment portfolio, you can't expect to perform professionally at peak levels all the time. Don't be too hard on yourself and expect professional perfection and growth all the time. Like successful, long-term investing, a life well-lived requires balance and consistency between home and office.
We are living in an age of finding pleasure and enjoyment in our work, and while it's a wonderful concept, the pressure (or the misconception) that you need to be happy every moment of every day is leaving many feeling unfulfilled. To be truly happy in your work there are a few things we all need to keep top of mind.
Our fast-paced lives often require us to make decisions on the fly with little consideration of why we are doing what we do and even less consideration of the long-term impact of those decisions. Clarity acts as a steady light beam that guides us to the right decision -- in our business or personal lives. It helps us identify our goals and precisely when we want to achieve them.
If you're like most people (myself included), you probably have areas for improvement, or opportunities for growth you could tackle. A year end review helps you identify the ones that are most important to you. The key to an effective review is asking yourself specific questions and being brutally honest in your answers.
The Liberals floated the idea of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) during the election campaign, but scant notice was taken by the media or the business community. But SBIR can be a very powerful catalyst for innovation and we must not allow this idea to be relegated to the policy back burner.
For a small percentage of us, if we are lucky enough, we might already have a friend or relative working in our desired industry who can help us get a foot in the door. But in reality, simply possessing a diploma doesn't always translate into finding a job right away. What then are some other options that a new graduate might look at?
Public speaking is linked to career success: It creates a perception that you're an expert in your field and it can be an opportunity to motivate people. I used to be terrified of speaking in public too, but was forced to overcome my fear so I could network with other entrepreneurs and promote my business.
A BNP Paribas global study finds that Millennials are starting more businesses, with higher headcount and targeting higher profits than Baby Boomers . In Canada, the allure of being your own boss is also strong with young adults: A study by Intuit shows that one quarter of Millennial-age entrepreneurs have never held a full-time job prior to starting out on their own -- nearly three times more than entrepreneurs ages 35-54.