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8 Excellent Web Resources for Startups

8 Excellent Web Resources for Startups

startup

    In my role as editor at FreelanceSwitch, something I see a lot is freelancers interested in taking their business a step further – trading in their status as a freelancer and sole trader in order to start a company or firm in their profession. I also personally know of a lot of people who have never been freelancers, but were just recently professionals in the corporate world and are now looking to run their own businesses because they don’t have a job anymore. Good information and knowledge is vital to improving the success of any endeavor, and here are eight websites that will inform and educate you on the subject of startup companies.

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    1. The Netsetter

    The Netsetter is a fairly new, but very interesting and informative blog aimed at a particular subset of startups with its very own culture, needs and ways of operating – that is, web-based business. The Netsetter is run by Collis Ta’eed, who is a very successful web entrepreneur himself, so you can trust the advice you get from here. Since web-based business is what most of you reading this will be interested in I recommend starting with The Netsetter.

    2. VentureBeat

    VentureBeat is a blog for those who are interested in private business and venture capital. It doesn’t so much teach you how to run a business as it does provide information that might inform your decisions – as the site itself says, VentureBeat’s mission is “to provide insider news and data about the entrepreneurial and venture community that is useful to decision makers.”

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    3. How to Change the World

    How to Change the World is the blog of Guy Kawasaki who is a well-known figure in the online community of entrepreneurs. The blog covers everything from generating buzz for your business and products to what you should and shouldn’t include in your resume.

    4. Men with Pens

    Men with Pens is actually the website of a US & Canadian copy and design business, but their blog is incredibly informative and covers everything from business to marketing and the kind of copy you should be using. What I love most about Men with Pens? It’s one of the few blogs that doesn’t sugarcoat every single post so much that it takes ten times longer to read. (That’s a legitimate concern. This is a productivity blog!)

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    5. Venture Hacks

    Venture Hacks, a blog with the tagline “Advice for entrepreneurs” just in case you weren’t clear on why it made the list, is an interesting read. Unlike most business blogs, it can probably be characterized by a certain amount of brevity and morselization that is still intellectual and useful. It provokes thought rather than filling in all the blanks for you and draws your attention to good information and interesting news.

    6. The Startup Lawyer

    If there’s one type of advice to prize above all others, I think it’s legal advice. I don’t mean to say that legal advice should always dictate your actions because sure, you’ll sometimes fly in its face and do the opposite of what your lawyer told you to, but the knowledge is invaluable. The Startup Lawyer is a blog that combines that most important type of advice with the topic of startups. What could be more useful?

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    7. Independent Street

    Independent Street is a Wall Street Journal blog, yet another case of old media trying to get into new media. This particular blog is, of course, aimed at entrepreneurial types and start-ups. It seems to me that half of everyone on the web has written off traditional media sources, but I think there’s still a lot they have to offer (in fact I think the quality of print journalism is usually much better than what you get online). By reading blogs like this you can be sure not everyone you take advice from thinks Twitter is the key to your marketing plan.

    8. Inc.

    Inc. is an interesting website aimed at small businesses and entrepreneurs. I enjoy it because while many blogs look at the subject from a point-of-view mired in the start-up phase, Inc. provides a more business oriented perspective that it sometimes seems is only adopted by big business. If I had to describe the content, I’d call it “strategic editorial” – it’s not step-by-step practical but it’s useful to get you thinking about where to go next.

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    Last Updated on January 2, 2019

    7 Steps For Making a New Year’s Resolution and Keeping It

    7 Steps For Making a New Year’s Resolution and Keeping It

    Are you keen to reinvent yourself this year? Or at least use the new year as a long overdue excuse to get rid of bad habits or pick up new ones?

    Yes, it’s that time of year again. The time of year when we feel as if we have to turn over a new leaf. The time when we misguidedly imagine that the arrival of a new year will magically provide the catalyst, motivation and persistence we need to reinvent ourselves.

    Traditionally, New Year’s Day is styled as the ideal time to kick start a new phase in your life and the time when you must make your all important new year’s resolution. Unfortunately, the beginning of the year is also one of the worst times to make a major change in your habits because it’s often a relatively stressful time, right in the middle of the party and vacation season.

    Don’t set yourself up for failure this year by vowing to make huge changes that will be hard to keep. Instead follow these seven steps for successfully making a new year’s resolution you can stick to for good.

    1. Just pick one thing

    If you want to change your life or your lifestyle don’t try to change the whole thing at once. It won’t work. Instead pick one area of your life to change to begin with.

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    Make it something concrete so you know exactly what change you’re planning to make. If you’re successful with the first change you can go ahead and make another change after a month or so. By making small changes one after the other, you still have the chance to be a whole new you at the end of the year and it’s a much more realistic way of doing it.

    Don’t pick a New Year’s resolution that’s bound to fail either, like running a marathon if you’re 40lbs overweight and get out of breath walking upstairs. If that’s the case resolve to walk every day. When you’ve got that habit down pat you can graduate to running in short bursts, constant running by March or April and a marathon at the end of the year. What’s the one habit you most want to change?

    2. Plan ahead

    To ensure success you need to research the change you’re making and plan ahead so you have the resources available when you need them. Here are a few things you should do to prepare and get all the systems in place ready to make your change.

    Read up on it – Go to the library and get books on the subject. Whether it’s quitting smoking, taking up running or yoga or becoming vegan there are books to help you prepare for it. Or use the Internet. If you do enough research you should even be looking forward to making the change.

    Plan for success – Get everything ready so things will run smoothly. If you’re taking up running make sure you have the trainers, clothes, hat, glasses, ipod loaded with energetic sounds at the ready. Then there can be no excuses.

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    3. Anticipate problems

    There will be problems so make a list of what they’ll be. If you think about it, you’ll be able to anticipate problems at certain times of the day, with specific people or in special situations. Once you’ve identified the times that will probably be hard work out ways to cope with them when they inevitably crop up.

    4. Pick a start date

    You don’t have to make these changes on New Year’s Day. That’s the conventional wisdom, but if you truly want to make changes then pick a day when you know you’ll be well-rested, enthusiastic and surrounded by positive people. I’ll be waiting until my kids go back to school in February.

    Sometimes picking a date doesn’t work. It’s better to wait until your whole mind and body are fully ready to take on the challenge. You’ll know when it is when the time comes.

    5. Go for it

    On the big day go for it 100%. Make a commitment and write it down on a card. You just need one short phrase you can carry in your wallet. Or keep it in your car, by your bed and on your bathroom mirror too for an extra dose of positive reinforcement.

    Your commitment card will say something like:

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    • I enjoy a clean, smoke-free life.
    • I stay calm and in control even under times of stress.
    • I’m committed to learning how to run my own business.
    • I meditate daily.

    6. Accept failure

    If you do fail and sneak a cigarette, miss a walk or shout at the kids one morning don’t hate yourself for it. Make a note of the triggers that caused this set back and vow to learn a lesson from them.

    If you know that alcohol makes you crave cigarettes and oversleep the next day cut back on it. If you know the morning rush before school makes you shout then get up earlier or prepare things the night before to make it easier on you.

    Perseverance is the key to success. Try again, keep trying and you will succeed.

    7. Plan rewards

    Small rewards are great encouragement to keep you going during the hardest first days. After that you can probably reward yourself once a week with a magazine, a long-distance call to a supportive friend, a siesta, a trip to the movies or whatever makes you tick.

    Later you can change the rewards to monthly and then at the end of the year you can pick an anniversary reward. Something that you’ll look forward to. You deserve it and you’ll have earned it.

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    Whatever your plans and goals are for this year, I’d do wish you luck with them but remember, it’s your life and you make your own luck.

    Decide what you want to do this year, plan how to get it and go for it. I’ll definitely be cheering you on.

    Are you planning to make a New Year’s resolution? What is it and is it something you’ve tried to do before or something new?

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