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110 Jefferson Blvd, Suite C Warwick, RI 02888

401 921 2607

800 782 3988

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Gil Lantini | FROM THE FOUNDER businesses, private equity and financial institutions. After a brief welcome from Duncan Niederauer, CEO of NYSE Euronext along with Jay Fishman, the attention was shifted to Karen Mills, Administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration. Karen was the first of several very impressive speakers on the panel.

from the founder As a small business owner, I’m often asked what my “average” day consists of. Anyone that owns a business knows that there is no such thing as an “average” day. A few weeks back I was working late at my computer, catching up on the emails from the day that seem to pile up faster than I can reply. I received an email close to midnight from Startup America Community Evangelist, Erika Batey. Erika’s email offered an exclusive opportunity to attend a small business symposium organized by Travelers Institute in the Board Room of the New York Stock Exchange on July 17th. The opportunity was only available to the first 15 startups that RSVP’d. Sometimes it does pay to be checking email after midnight! The morning of the symposium arrived and it was time to head to NYC. I left at 4am to drive into New Haven to catch the train into the City. I had been sending emails along the way and as a force of habit was hitting the refresh button on my email feverishly like a teenager playing a video game. Was I really expecting a reply to my emails before 6am? This was my first trip to the NYSE, so it was a very exciting morning. I spent 45 minutes in a cab to go 4.5 miles from Grand Central. A very foreign concept to someone from Rhode Island. The cab dropped me off 2 blocks from the NYSE with 5 minutes to spare. I sprinted those two blocks in 90+ degree heat wearing a suit and carrying my laptop. I arrived just as Jay Fishman, the CEO of Travelers, was ringing the opening bell, which I was determined not to miss. By 10am the symposium had started. There were roughly 100 executives in attendance, from small and medium sized

Mrs. Mills highlighted the optimism of the attendees, with over 73% feeling the economy would be the same or better in 2013. Although SBA lending was down from 2008-2010, 85% of business searching for capital found it in 2011. Through the SBIC program, the SBA has $2 billion dollars going into the hands of early stage companies; the companies that ultimately drive our economy. She then went on to talk about the trend of businesses self-funding now more than ever. The active use of technology was one of the key contributing factors, due to the opportunity for businesses to reach their target audience without needing to fund large marketing initiatives. She cited larger companies like Facebook and LinkedIN, both of which spent the least amount of their money during the startup phase and the most once they knew their companies were scalable. This same principle will work for companies of all sizes. Also on the panel was Deirdre Quinn, Co-Founder and President, Lafayette 148 New York. Deirdre shared real life stories of her company that began in 1996 as a husband and wife team and is now a globally recognized brand with over 1,500 employees. By sharing her passion, vision and determination, Deirdre inspired the audience with her story. The audience was also inspired by the amazing story of Chobani yogurt which started with a piece of mail that said, “Fully equipped yogurt factory for sale.” Chobani founder Hamdi UlukayaI threw it away but later went back to get it. Two years later the first product was launched and now Chobani is the 3rd largest yogurt brand, grossing over $250 million dollars per year. Being surrounded by a room of people that share the same passion for small business as I do and hearing stories like these motivates me to go out every day and try to make a difference. I hope that each issue of RISBJ continues to make a difference as we continue to support and inspire the small business community in Rhode Island. And for the record, I skipped the Taxi and took the subway back to the train station. Until Next Month…

Founder and President


00 02

Secretary Of State

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Sales Sixth Sense Got A New Product Idea Spotlight On Startups SBA Provides More Access And Opportunities Featured Town North Providence Networking And Workshops What’s In A Word? Think Like an Olympian New Engagement Model The Ostrich Syndrome First Social Enterprise Certification Technology Bubble Going To Burst Alex And Ani Corporate University Advice For Joining Charity Boards Independent Contractor Or Employee? Your Business Needs To Get Organized Where’s The Traffic? Use The Tuesday Technique Featured Story FarSounder

08 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 46

Rebuilding Our Economy Education And Economics Score Tip Of The Month Featured NonProfit Waterfire Providence Golocal Prov Positive Business Create Killer Social Media Content All About The Ladies Featured Chamber Newport County Chamber Chat

48 50 52 54 56 58 60 62 64 66 68

Commercial Real Estate

70 72

Community Corner

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01

From The Founder

03 05 07

Mind Your Own Brand

09 11

Entrepreneurial Summer Camp

13 15

First Fine Arts/Crafts Exhibit & Sale

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Gamification

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31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 47 49 51 53

Working With Students Land At Quonset Becoming A Premium America’s Comeback City

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Work Naked If You Have To

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SECRETARY OF STATE | Ralph Mollis

Secretary of State Mollis and the R.I. Economic Development Corporation

Team Up to Cut Red Tape for Small Business Secretary Of State Ralph Mollis

The R.I. Economic Development Corporation (RIEDC) and Secretary of State A. Ralph Mollis are sponsoring the We Mean Business Expo Tues., Sept. 18, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Warwick. “Government is opening its doors to you. In just one day in one place you can meet with the agencies that regulate your business, provide advice and offer financing,” says Mollis. More than 100 federal, state and municipal government agencies have been invited to participate in the Expo, which is presented with the cooperation of Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee and in association with the R.I. Small Business Development Center and the U.S. Small Business Administration. “It’s like speed dating for small businesses. Once a year we put dozens of government agencies in a room and invite you to come in and to talk face-to-face with the people who can answer your questions about starting or expanding a business,” says Mollis. “Instead of leaving the usual voice mail or email or visiting an agency’s

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website, the Expo enables you to sit down with a real person and talk through the issues that are important to your business.” One entrepreneur that found last year’s Expo successful is Jerri Moon Cantone of Johnston. She launched her photography business [Jerri Moon Cantone Photography] in July 2011 and she worked the Expo hard to help get her new business off the ground.

the expo enables you to sit down with a real person and talk through the issues that are important to your business In addition to the opportunity to meet with government officials about registering a business, financing, taxes, licensing and permitting, the Expo will offer free workshops. “Go to one of the seminars. Get free business advice from a team of

consultants put together especially with small businesses in mind,” says Mollis. Nonprofit organizations that offer services to Rhode Island businesses have also been invited to exhibit. This is the sixthconsecutive year that Mollis and RIEDC have collaborated on the event. Past Expos have drawn hundreds of exhibitors and business people. “The Expo gives government agencies a powerful tool for changing the perception that Rhode Island is not business friendly. People really value the opportunity to talk face-to-face with them,” says Mollis. The Secretary of State’s office works with every corporate entity that is registered to do business in Rhode Island - about 60,000 in all. The office oversees recording commercial liens, protecting corporate trademarks and providing advice to small and start-up businesses. For information about exhibiting or attending the Expo, call 222-2185 or visit WeMeanBusinessRI.com.


Frustrated? Gil Lantini President, Founder Ralph Coppolino Vice President, Operations Danny Angeli Vice President, Business Development James Pardee Jr Creative Director and Design Editor Mike Casale Graphic Designer Aaron Cadieux Video Production Manager Jen Metz Account Manager Contributing Writers Karen Benz Lisa Buben Kristin Carcieri-MacRae Jeffrey Deckman Laura Dunn Speaker Gordon D Fox Steve Gareau Gayle L. Gifford

There are many frustrations in business but your phone service shouldn’t be one of them.

let’s talk about the all in one phone solution

Adam Harvey Mark S. Hayward Steven J. King Congressman Jim Langevin Mark D. Lee Dave Lubelczyk Dave Marcello Aileen McDonough Secretary Of State Ralph Mollis Elizabeth Pierotti Patricia Raskin Dennis Rebelo Dr. Ronald G. Shapiro Chris Sheehy Lisa Shorr Allie Smith Mayor Angel Taveras for a complete listing of our contributing writers and their bios, please visit www.risbj.com/authors

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888 856 5970 | www.ritelephone.com 81 Western Industrial Drive Cranston, RI 02921 www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal


Mind Your Own Brand | STARTUPS

DO YOU HAVE A GOLD MEDAL BRAND by Dave Lubelczyk

The Summer Olympics has got me thinking about striving for excellence. Even though it is a major accomplishment and an honor just to be able to compete, every Olympian has the desire to be the best and win a gold medal. This desire for excellence is not often true for small businesses. The quest for extraordinary is very rare in businesses these days. Most strive for good or even very good but few strive for excellence. Yet despite their lackluster effort, most businesses still expect to receive gold for their less than stellar performance. When they’re not rewarded, most businesses settle for what they can get. What would happen if an athlete took the same attitude of many small businesses and claim that it is too hard to be the best, settling for what was easy to attain? None of them would even qualify to compete and it would be impossible for them to achieve a medal-winning level of greatness. Do you find yourself saying, “We are a great company, so why aren’t we a winning brand?” Instead, ask yourself, “How can we strive for excellence and provide brand experiences that people will perceive as extraordinary?” Being extraordinary is hard work but the reward is priceless. The top get the medals and the rest sit out and watch. As a small business you must remember that every time a customer interacts with your company, you need to provide a gold medal experience so they won’t remain passive towards your brand. If your company provides an extraordinary experience at each and every customer interaction, you will build passion in your customers and recruit advocates who will tell the world just how extraordinary your brand is. Remember, no one talks about the runner-ups but rather about the one who consistently wins the gold.

The Olympics is also like business in that once you achieve a certain level of success everyone expects you to continue to perform at that level or get out of the game. Michael Phelps cannot just win a medal now. He must win multiple golds. For some sports, gold is not even good enough. The fans expect a new world record. This expectation makes it even harder and harder to be extraordinary.

no one talks about the runner-ups but rather about the one who consistently wins the gold. So what are you to do as a small business? Should you give up because the game keeps getting harder? Should you blame a broken shoelace for your inability to compete? Is sitting on the sidelines a viable option? No. You should push even harder and do whatever it takes to break ahead of the pack. Set a world record experience for your customers and turn your brand into gold!

Dave Lubelczyk Image Identity | imageidentity.com

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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STARTUPS | Sales Sixth Sense

are you in touch with your

SALES SIXTH SENSE by Steve Gareau

I’m no psychology expert, but there’s one aspect of psychology that’s benefited me in all my years of sales, or just plain meeting people. We’re all aware of our five senses: sight, smell, touch, taste and hearing. There’s one more, talked about by many doctors, psychologists and educators. There must be hundreds of books about it, but we still know very little about its use inside us. But I’d bet you’ve come into contact with it. It could be a feeling of uneasiness between you and another person, whispering to you, “Move on.” If you’re an employee, you may find your manager telling you another way to deal with it, but it’s a voice inside you saying that there’s something wrong with this situation. Yes, I’m talking about your sixth sense. You may think that I’m just saying, “listen to your feelings,” but this is a tool that can help you achieve your goals, if you learn to use it right. It doesn’t have to be part of some touchy-feely philosophy, trusting your sixth sense can be part of being structured and efficient. Let’s say you’re with a prospective client, and you can tell that they need your expertise. But this uneasiness enters the room. If

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you can feel it, so can they. That’s your cue to bow out of the situation as gracefully as you can. Leave the door open for a return call at a later date, but move on for now. Maybe you are feeling like it’s stupid to turn down business in this economy. But true success doesn’t come through proving what a great conversationalist you are, or even that you can seal any deal that comes your way. It could be that your sixth sense is telling you that this prospective customer would be more trouble than he or she is worth. It is always better to spend your energy on positive meetings with receptive clients, than on situations your sixth sense tells you may become a problem. You’ll be meeting hundreds or even thousands of people during your career – you need to know when a situation will be a no-win one for you, so you can put your attention on those that will work. If you want, you can return to the customer at a later date, to verify what you found out on your earlier call. If you’ve developed your sixth sense, you’ll be better equipped to handle any issues that come up. I can’t say that this has happened often in my case, but when it does I’m always glad I honed my sixth sense skills. For example, once I met with a prospective client and I had a feeling that I’d be best off without the business. I listened to that feeling and backed away. Later, I had the chance to meet this man outside of business, at a tennis tournament we were both playing in. When we both got to the finals, I could


Sales Sixth Sense | STARTUPS see that he had cold eyes and a look that would freeze the best of us. I soon found out why that feeling had come to me in our earlier sales meeting. He was a true competitor, one who doesn’t give up easily. We played five sets that took over five hours. His will to win was all that mattered to him – and mine was about the same. This wasn’t “customer tennis” in which the customer just naturally gets to win. It was hard competition. So, guess where that tension in our meeting came from? We both wanted to win. It would have been a competitive relationship, not the kind of cooperative one that succeeds for both companies involved.

you need to know when a situation will be a nowin one for you, so you can put your attention on those that will work. So no, I never called on him again. It would have been a struggle right from the start. I was doing well enough at that point in my career that I didn’t need the mental challenge that comes from working with this type of client.

DONT MISS THE 2012 OCEAN STATE SMALL BUSINESS EXPO wednesday, october 3rd at the crowne plaza in warwick, ri

Steps to Take Think about the kinds of people you work with well, or not so well. Think of the traits they have in common. Are they relaxed and easy going? Or, are they hard-driving and goal-oriented, so that one thing you like about them is that you can count on them to do what they say? Or, are there other things about them that you like and dislike? It may sound negative, but you need to concentrate on finding out the character traits you really can’t stand. Find the real dealbreakers for you, because you’re then going to do your best to avoid these kinds of people. You’ll have greater success going with the flow, than you will trying to swim upstream. Learn to recognize these traits in people you see in business. Heed what your sixth sense is telling you and back away from situations that don’t work for you, you save yourself a lot of unnecessary work and trouble!

Steve Gareau Bridge Series Books www.bridgeseriesbooks.com

exhibitor booths and sponsorship opportunities are still available

www.oceanstatesmallbusinessexpo.com 401 769 1325 x11

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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STARTUPS | Got A New Product Idea

so, you’ve got a new product idea

tips from the trenches From time to time, haven’t we all had good ideas for a new product or service, and yet how many of us have actually done anything about it? Probably very few, and while that might be the end of the story, every now and then, you may be surprised to see one of your ideas end up on a store shelf somewhere. If this scenario has a familiar ring or if you just keep getting ideas that you think have merit, it could be that your creative instincts are right on target. In either case, it may be worth giving some time and attention to your next idea so that you have a chance at reaping some benefits rather than someone else. If you’re thinking that this sounds good but you don’t know what to do or where to begin, this is the first in a series of articles to help you get on the path. Companies whose life-blood depends on their new product offerings invest heavily in research, development, and testing. They have in-house resources, connections, and assets that are not readily available to individuals. That being said, as an individual entrepreneur, you have advantages. The first is that you are close to the action and understand the problems or needs that exist from a consumer’s perspective. Secondly, you have the capacity to respond quickly in a way that large and unwieldy corporations cannot. Thirdly, you’re the boss and you make the decisions!

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

As a seasoned inventor who’s been in the trenches for more than 30 years with some wins, a share of mistakes and lessons learned, the message to anyone considering taking the plunge is a simple one. There is no rocket science or secret sauce involved. With organization, a plan, common sense, and a willingness to do the grunt work, you could be on your way to a successful venture.

first, let’s set the stage with some basics: •

Ideas in themselves are not inventions. They can become inventions and products, but until they are proven to have substance and commercial viability, do not expect that any company or investor will buy into them.

The failure rate for new products is high and getting to the commercialization stage will prove to be challenging. Nonetheless, if you do the work and keep filling in the missing pieces, you have a shot. You gotta believe…

There are more than a few ways to get a product idea to the marketplace. Doing it yourself or licensing are only two of them. The channel you choose will determine how you

Elizabeth Pierotti The Inventing Life

by Elizabeth Pierotti

should proceed and how much work you need to do. •

The process of getting from idea-tomarketplace will cost money. This is a given. Product development, patents, and prototypes are expensive and while these may be in your future, your initial focus should be elsewhere. Save your money and get an education first. Do your research, engage trustworthy and smart people, and do not fall in love with your product idea.

you have the capacity to respond quickly in a way that large & unwieldy corporations cannot The goal of this education is to prove the viability of your concept so that you will make informed decisions on how to proceed and invest your resources. The question is, are you ready to commit to the work? If so, then welcome to the inventing life. You could be in for the ride of your life.


Freedom National Bank sponsors…

Entrepreneurial Summer Camp From August 22nd through August 31st, the Rhode Island Small Business Recovery Program and SCORE will host sixteen free seminars presented by the area’s finest small business trainers. All seminars will be held at the Centerville Seminar Center 875 Centerville Road, Warwick, Building 2, Suite 5. Pick and choose those programs that appeal to you…

Wednesday, August 22nd 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. “What Am I Doing Here? Making Networking Work for You!”, presented by Ed Drozda, The Small Business Doctor and President of E & D Associates. 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “The Top Seven Reasons to Use Video on Your Website”, presented by David Sardinha, President Pineapple Studio 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. “Marketing with Stories…how to create buzz and gain mind share through the power of stories”, presented by Dave Nash, Founder of the RI Small Business Recovery Program and President of Engage Marketing, Inc.

Thursday, August 23th 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. “The Mystery of the Missing Prospect”, presented by Bob Salvas, President of Success Mail 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “Razor-Thin Positioning: Become the Expert and Gain Market Share by Narrowing Your Focus”, presented by Dave Lubelczyk, President of Image Identity, LTD and author of MYOB …Mind Your Own Brand.

6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. “Building your Brand”, presented by Gil Lantini, President of FOCUS Business Solutions and Founder of the RI Small Business Journal.

Monday, August 27th 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “Essential Public Speaking Skills for Business Success”, presented by Alyson Arnold, President of Speak Easy.

Tuesday, August 28th 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. “Pricing for Profits”, presented by David Lucier, CPA. 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “An Entrepreneur’s Legal Toolbox”, presented by Nicholas Pereira, Esq.

Wednesday, August 29th 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. “Finding Your Omaha: How to Create Your Business’s Roadmap to Operational Success”, presented by Tom Stocker, President of Owner’s Edge, LLC. 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “Evaluating a Business Purchase Opportunity”, presented by Dan Morrison, Partner/Area Director, Murphy Business and Financial Corporation

6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. “Is Your Business Website Connected? Increase Your Online Visibility”, presented by Chris Sheehy, President of Sidewalk Branding Company.

Thursday, August 30th 9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. “Triple Your Income with Your #1 Asset: Your “List”, presented by Kevin Conway, President of Cutting Edge eMarketing. 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. “Access to Capital”, presented by SEED Corp. and Freedom National Bank. 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. “QuickBooks Essentials”, presented by Tammy Collins, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and President of Paragon Small Business Solutions.

Friday, August 31st 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. “Do-It-Yourself Website Workshop”, presented by Justin Capaldi of Capaldi Web Design. These programs are made available through the generous support of Freedom National Bank.

Complete descriptions of each of these seminars can be found at www.rismallbusinessrecovery.com. There is no charge to attend any or all events, but space is limited and reservations are necessary at www.rismallbusinessrecovery.com. If you have questions, please call Dave Nash at 401-447-8000. www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SP

TLIGHT

We are Cathy Hall and Mark Dionne, RI natives and owners of Neverbored Board Shop, Inc. Our shop focuses on standup paddleboarding and snowboarding to keep you on a board all year long so you are “neverbored.” It was born out of a desire to spend more time doing things that make us happy and sharing those things with everyone. Last summer we tried paddleboarding and were immediately hooked. It was a transforming experience. It was incredibly easy to get started. It was serene. It was challenging. It was full of possibilities. We spent the summer and fall on the water more days than not, both flatwater paddling and surfing the coasts of RI and Maine. We couldn’t wait to get everyone we know on a board. Now we can’t wait to build a paddleboarding community in northern RI

opened : Operating since July 2011 number of employees : 6 independent contractors

on

startups

Snowboarding has been an essential part of Mark’s life for the past seven years. His true passion for snowboarding lies in the backcountry; finding untouched terrain, picking his own lines and exploring mountains in their natural state. Paddleboarding has much of the same appeal. You can go anywhere there is water.

opened : May 15, 2012

Our love of the outdoors and my nine years of managing small businesses and close to twenty years in retail and customer service combine naturally to create neverbored. We are very excited about the opportunity to develop a paddleboarding community side by side with the very people neverbored exists to service.

biggest challenge :

making connections with big corporations to include yoga in their wellness programs! I have only lived here for 18 months and don’t have long term connections to work from.

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

www.neverboredinc.com

Apple Valley Plaza 9 Cedar Swamp Road Smithfield, RI 02917

Because we are the only shop of our kind in the area it is challenging to know what will work and what will not…from how to get people in to where to advertise to what merchandise to carry, it is

So stop in, say hello and take a look at our collection of boards, apparel and accessories. We can’t wait to meet you and help you do more of what makes you happy.

We are a mobile yoga company! Our network of skilled professionals come to your door.

www.jaanyoga.com

biggest challenge : Our biggest challenge so far is

number of employees : 2

Would you like to find more peace in your day-to-day? Overwhelmed, stressed out, running ragged? Want to rid yourself of neck pain or sleep better at night? Yoga offers you solutions to all of this and more. Jaan Yoga is a growing network of skilled yoga professionals that come to you offering relaxation and wellness that fits

a combination of educated guesses and trial and error.

right in to your crazy schedule! We are thrilled to be able to offer classes on site at your workplace, private sessions in your home, or find us in the community! (We will be starting to host classes at Rhode Runner on North Main St in August.) Our skilled and thoughtful teachers are certified, registered, and insured. They travel to you making yoga easy and accessible. And all at a low cost to you! Find us online at www.facebook.com/jaanyoga or at our website www.jaanyoga.com


P

TLIGHT My youngest son, Angelo III, was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 2. My wife and I knew the importance of having Angelo wear a medical ID bracelet on his wrist each day. But, like most people, Angelo wanted to wear something hip and trendy. That’s when I realized that real innovation and fashion needed to be injected into these products. I decided to use my jewelry design background and create my own medical ID bracelet for Angelo. The features of my design were to make it fun and fashionable, innovative and interchangeable. After seeing Angelo so excited about his HIP Band I realized I could help others of any age who have to deal with their medical issue(s). When discussing technology with now CoFounder Chris Melo, the addition of a web-

Spotlight on Startups | STARTUPS

on

startups

based personal health manager that uses cloud technology to sync the wearer’s medical information to their bracelet really added true innovation and efficiency when communicating critical medical information especially in times of a medical emergency. That is how HealthID Profile was created…it is our goal to help the wearer in the time of a medical emergency by quickly communicating their pertinent information to first responders. Outside of an emergency, it allows them to manage all of their medical history and information in one place to share with caregivers or healthcare providers; allowing for better informed decisions and a more efficient management of personal and private health information. We make it HIP to wear Medical ID Bracelets!

opened : Incorporated February 9th, 2012 number of employees : 2

www.healthidprofile.com

PO Box 8598 Cranston, RI 02920

biggest challenge : The biggest challenge we faced when we started was our need to be very creative with getting our product awareness out to the marketplace for those who would benefit directly from wearing one of our Medical ID Bracelets.

We partner with popular restaurants & pubs, emblazoning all their pint glasses with their logo, text-based Trivia, and sms marketing. The catch is they have to support local business, by allowing up to 6 local, small business owners on their glasses! opened : March 1st, 2012

We are a pint-sized, hands-on alterative to traditional marketing. Our partners enjoy 1st say over who gets to be on their Trivia Glasses. After each 6 mth campaign, Trivia Glasses are given away in a “Pint Giveaway Week”,further branding everyone on them in the areas they serve. We then replace them w/ 300-600 new Trivia Glasses for the next 6 months. Look for Trivia Glasses at Filippou’s Twisted Pizzeria in EG & Exeter August 1st, and all over RI by year’s end. Tap into TriviaGlasses.com for more details. Franchise Opportunities Available Nationwide.

number of employees : 3

71 Helme Road

www.TriviaGlasses.com Twitter: @trivglass Facebook: @TriviaGlasses.com

biggest challenge : Our first challenge was designing our platform to randomly deliver trivia questions via text. Our emblazoned wrap design was next, followed by finding a price point that small business owners were comfortable with...enabling us to start taking orders. That was a great day.

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SBA | SBA Provides More Access and Opportunities underserved markets. The SLA program simplifies and streamlines paperwork making it more cost effective for lenders. It can be tough for small businesses to manage their cash flow. They’ve got payrolls to meet, inventory to buy and customers to please. A revolving line of credit could help small businesses manage their cash cycle. This is why SBA also re-engineered the Capital Lines (CAPLines) program. Today, small businesses often compete for contracts to help them scale up and create jobs. One of the biggest “growing pains” associated with winning a new contract is that the business often does not have the necessary cash on-hand to hire workers and buy materials to help fulfill the order. CAPLines provides a path for these small businesses to finance contracts while avoiding highinterest rates through an SBA revolving line of credit.

by Mark S. Hayward

To help our nation recover from the biggest recession since the Great Depression, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) stepped in and supported more than $79 billion to more than 150,000 small businesses since 2009. To make this possible, we brought more than 1,000 community lenders back to SBA lending for the first time since 2007 and we secured a $20 billion commitment to increase small business lending over the next three years from 13 of the largest banks. These steps culminated in a record year for SBA in 2011. We supported more than $30 billion in lending to over 60,000 small businesses. In Rhode Island, SBA approved 447 loans totaling $126.5 million. SBA also provided small businesses with the tools they needed to help lead us out of the recession and into recovery. However, because there are still gaps in the marketplace, SBA is creating new products to fill the gaps and provide more access and opportunity; at the same time streamlining and simplifying our process to make it easier for customers. Starting in June 2012, SBA revised portions of the Small Loan Advantage (SLA) program making the application process easier, expanding the number of qualified lenders and increasing the loan cap. The SLA program is structured to encourage lenders to make small-dollar loans, which often benefit small businesses in

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

we supported more than $30 billion in lending to over 60,000 small businesses. in ri, sba approved 447 loans totaling $126.5 million In addition, small businesses that use the CAPLines program will benefit from the new increased SBA 7(a) loan limit of $5 million, which went into effect with the Small Business Jobs Act. These larger loan sizes will help small businesses that are poised to win bigger contracts, creating jobs as a result and an economy that’s built to last. We know how important small businesses are to the economy. Over the last 15 years, small businesses created two out of every three net new private sector jobs. Half of all American workers own or work for a small business. And we’re counting on small businesses to drive our economy to a full recovery. SBA is here to help, and we are constantly looking for ways to provide access and opportunity to the American small business owner. SBA loans are a smart public-private partnership and they’re a powerful bang for the taxpayer buck.

Mark S. Hayward District Director U.S. Small Business Administration


Fine Arts/Crafts Exhibit & Sale | STARTUPS

pawtucket armory to host first

fine arts/crafts exhibit & sale Pawtucket, Rhode Island is rapidly evolving into a burgeoning arts center, attracting artists from across the United States. Small business and enterprises driven by artists and designers, have been finding a welcome environment in the city. The RI Small Business Journal is a media sponsor for the event. This is one of the reasons why a new art and crafts show has chosen Pawtucket to take place: The First Annual Arts Marketplace Pawtucket

(www.artsmarketplacepawtucket.com) will take place on Saturday, September 8 and Sunday, September 9, 2012, from 10am to 4pm, in the Drill Hall of the newly renovated Pawtucket Armory Art Center, 172 Exchange Street, in downtown Pawtucket, next to Tolman High School and The Gamm Theater. Conceptualized and organized by two local, well-known and savvy artists, whose own studios are in Pawtucket and East Greenwich – Gretchen Dow Simpson and Nancy Gaucher Thomas – this event has the markings of becoming one of the most esteemed art shows in the region. “We have been excited to see the success of the Pawtucket Arts Festival, and we

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always felt there could be a wonderful showcase for fine artists during this annual event,” said Nancy Gaucher-Thomas. “When we suggested the possibility of such an event,” added Gretchen Dow Simpson, “we thought it was something we could definitely do. We are thrilled to say that we are very happy with the enthusiasm of the participants and the city.” The show will be comprised of fifty artists working in fine arts and crafts, many with connections to Rhode Island, others from throughout the region and from as far away as Arizona. The work they will be exhibiting and selling is high quality fine art and crafts: jewelry, sculpture, painting, printmaking, fine wearables and accessories.

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featured town

NORTH PROVIDENCE When Mayor Charles Lombardi first took office in 2007, he faced the challenge of a town with a $5.6 million dollar deficit and vacant store fronts in the towns highest traffic areas. Combining a business background with what is in the best interest of the Town, Mayor Lombardi began his journey to improving both the business climate and quality of life in North Providence. No stranger to small business, with a 67 year old family run company with 38 employees, Mayor Lombardi knows what it takes to build and sustain small business even in tough economic times. “Why do I still go to my business at 5:30 in the morning? Because that’s what needs to be done. Especially right now with the economy being what it is and with competition out there. The only way we survive is to pay attention to what’s out there.” Coming from the private sector, it’s easier to not to make decisions purely based on politics. With state budget cuts of over $5 million dollars and a declining economy, North Providence was faced with a $10.6 million deficit in 2009.

satisfied, in turn becoming a $1.7 million rainy-day-fund every year. In just seven years, the town will go from a $10.6 million deficit to a $1.7 million surplus. In addition to the deficit reduction, North Providence has made it easier for local entrepreneurs to open a business. Being the only town with a one-stop inspection division, business owners can now speak to the Building Inspector, Plumbing Inspector, Electrical Inspector, Fire Marshall, Zoning Board and Planning Director all in one location. This is a huge time savings to business owners, who previously had to visit four different buildings for permits and inspections. The building, which was formerly a Chinese Restaurant, was refurbished using a majority of materials from the closed Ford dealership that donated goods such as ceiling tiles, lights and a fire-alarm systems. The Town also used the heating and A/C units from the building to replace older units in Town Hall, saving the town thousands of dollars in additional expenses.

Faced with some difficult decisions, there were a few ways to straighten out the financial situation. One was to approach the general assembly and ask for approval to send out a supplemental tax bill. After being denied the supplemental tax bill, the Town decided to raise taxes by 17%. This was a difficult decision, but one Mayor Lombardi knew he had to make.

Another thing that Mayor Lombardi has done was to identify every vacant store front in town. “We have been on a hunt for new business suitors, and we are constantly talking to people on the phone asking if they would like to move their business to North Providence. Because of our initiative, we have had large businesses, such as Lowe’s and Dunkin Donuts, and dozens of small businesses move in and make a positive impact on the town.”

Mayor Lombardi also proposed a deficit reduction bond which was approved. North Providence is now in the third year of the repayment of the bond, and in two years the deficit reduction bond will be

For anyone looking to start a business, Mayor Lombardi added “If you put politics aside, pay attention to your goal, and do things to make it happen, you will become a successful business owner.”

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

34,000 Population 1636 Date of Town 1765 Date of Incorporation 5.8 Square Miles Total Area www.northprovidenceri.gov


SAT. & SUN.

SEPT. 8 & 9 10am to 4pm Fine Art & American-made Crafts

SHOW & SALE 
 Pawtucket Armory Arts Center 172 Exchange St., 


Located at the Armory Arts Center in downtown Pawtucket, a beautiful spacious location, and perfect venue to highlight the extraordinary quality of art and craft from artists in our region. In addition, nearby Festival events will include music ,demonstrations and many other family events. FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

artsmarketplacepawtucket.com

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This six week workshop is for those who want to develop public speaking skills, or want to hone their existing skills. The workshop is scheduled to start on September 6, 2012 at the Slade Business Center, 3280 Post Road, Warwick, RI, from 6:00pm to 8:30pm and will be held on consecutive Thursdays from thereafter.

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EVENTS | Networking and Workshops

21

Tuesday, August 21st

27

Monday, August 27th

East Greenwich Chamber

Uncle Jay’s Monday Night

Business After Hours

Networking

Rocky Hill School

1149 Bar & Grill

530 Ives Road East Greenwich, RI

965 Fall River Avenue

530 pm to 730 pm

Seekonk, MA 530 pm to 730 pm

22

Wednesday, August 22nd East Greenwich Chamber

29

Wednesday, August 29th

Statewide Young Professionals

NK Chamber

Networking Night

August Business After Hours

Eleven Fory Nine

Riggs & Gallagher, Inc.

1149 Division Street

50 Whitecap Dr., Quonset

Warwick, RI

500 pm to 700 pm

530 pm to 730 pm

30 23

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Thursday, August 30th

Thursday, August 23rd

Southern RI Chamber

Newport County Chamber

Business After Hours

Business After Hours

Summer Bash

Mount Hope Farm

The South County Commons

250 Metacom Ave. Bristol, RI

Tower Hill Rd, Wakefield

500 pm to 700 pm

500 pm to 800 pm

Thursday, August 23rd

04

Tuesday, September 4th

Central RI Chamber

Out Of The Box Networking

Business After Hours

Grid Iron Ale House & Grill

$10 Members, $25 Non-Members

1599 Post Road

Elite Physical Therapy

Warwick, RI

535 Centerville Road, Warwick

500 pm to 730 pm

430 pm to 730 pm

06 24

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

Thursday, September 6th

Friday, August 24th

Northern Chamber

Central RI Chamber

“Speed Networking”

Leads Luncheon

Special Olympics Rhode Island

$10 Members, $25 Non-Members

370 George Washington

1149 Restaurant

Highway, Unit 1

1149 Division St, Warwick

Smithfield, RI 02917

1200 pm to 130 pm

800 am to 930 am


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Wednesday, September 12th Naragansett Chamber Networking At Noon Pancho O’malley’s 140 Point Judith Rd Narragansett,RI 02882 1200 pm to 130 pm

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Wednesday, September 12th East Bay Chamber Business After Hours Networking Lepre Physical Therapy Maple Avenue Medical Center

The Rhode Island Business Journal is excited to introduce our newest media partner, GoGo Cast. This Rhode Island based organiation is a leading on-demand, location based digital media company providing real-time HD digital news, information and advertising displays in hundreds of high traffic retail locations across the state. (GoGo Screens) In addition, RISBJ and GoGo Cast are proud to present GoGo Cast’s newest rewardingly addictive mobile platform, GoGo Mobile. GoGo Mobile provides business with a unique promotionl solution that delivers real-time highly relevant information directly to ther consumer when they want through a mobile BroadSign added this

application. GoGo Mobile complements GoGo Screens marketing solution by providing them with the ability to extend their reach from within the store, directly to the consumer. Businesses can easily create ads and deals on both the app and the screens, easily supply them to a market audience and/or target locations, and redeem all the benefits from advertising on these two advertising powerhouses. This partnership will provide RISBJ with additional reach in the digial media market statewide.

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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

19


WHAT’S IN A WORD?

by Chris Sheehy

The internet has proven to be a significant revenue and inbound lead-generating tool for small businesses, and with so many companies having websites nowadays, businesses of all sizes are discovering that local marketing is hyper-competitive. Being discovered online is getting increasingly complex. The days of setit-and-forget-it websites doing the heavy lifting of online marketing are long gone. Today’s businesses need quantifiable results for their hard-earned marketing spend. With respect to internet marketing – this means selecting the right words that will enable your business to both rank well on search engines, and be discovered by more buying-prospects searching for what you have to sell. Regardless of what the name is on the sign outside your building or on your business card – the wording you use for internet marketing plays a significant part of your overall online visibility. Your businesses listing on Google Search for example, is often the first impression a new customer has of your company – so it should accurately convey your business

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

and be crafted in a way to attract the right searchers. Conversely, a low ranking on a search might cause your existing clients to be lured away from your business by competitors who appear more prominently – judging solely by their higher ranking and increased visibility. Think of the words you use for online marketing as magnets – use the right ones, and you’ll attract in the right buyers. I recently received a call from a businessconsultant whose client was setting up shop in North Carolina. I was included in the early stages of their marketing strategy for my input on what to name this new business - from both an offline and online perspective. A local marketing firm had already made their pitch for a name, but the consultant had suggested his client get a second opinion. In this case the business was an auto body shop, and the name proposed (both online and offline) for this new company was “Town Collision Center” (For this article “Town” = the actual town the business is in).

Pizza or Apizza My viewpoint was quite different. Knowing this business markets hyper-locally (about 10 mile radius), I suggested they incorporate their dominate local identifier (their actual town name in this case) along with the phrase “auto body” (not Collision Center) in the name of the business as seen from the street, as well as within their online presence. “Auto Body” “Body Shop” “Auto Body Shop” “Collision Center”– all the same right? Po-tay-toe or po-tah-toe, it’s still just a potato. Isn’t it? Having had several auto body repair clients over the years I have done some name-game studies before, and with 823,000 searches in the U.S. every month, “Auto Body” has proven to be the phrase that pays. The remainder receiving 550,000 – 90,500 and 110,000 monthly U.S. searches respectively.


What’s In A Word? | SMALL BUSINESS

Think for a moment how you search for something online. If you were looking for great pizza in New Haven CT for instance, this might be how your search query could play out: Pizza (whoa – way too many results) Pizza restaurants in CT (more refined, but not specific enough yet) Pizza restaurants in New Haven CT (fantastico - che è!) Doing this search Giulios Pizza and Restaurant pulls top rank for a regular non-paid listing (called an organic search result). Having lived in New Haven half my life however, I can tell you that Modern Apizza is the local favorite. So why aren’t they ranking #1 in the search?

• •

• • •

• Apizza is a thin-crust pizza unique to New Haven CT; it even has its own Wikipedia page. If you want good pizza in CT, Apizza is what you are looking for. Rolling back on that search query – this time replacing Pizza with “Apizza” you’ll find the beloved Modern Apizza owns the search engine results page (aka: SERP) with four-listings on the first page – a whopping 40% market share!

Auto Insurance or Car Insurance. What’s In A Word? With the right research, strategy, and execution - businesses using optimized and targeted keywords within their digital assets and in their online marketing wordtrack will rank higher in search. A website, blog, social media channels, images, and video are common examples of a business’s digital assets. Why is ranking on search engines so important anyway? • 93% of all internet traffic is derived from search engines

60% of search clicks go to the top three listings 70% of the links people click on are for organic results (i.e. – not the paid ones) 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results 80% of unsuccessful searches are followed by a revised search 91% of email users have unsubscribed from a company email they had previously opted-in 40% of SEO marketing campaigns achieve a ROI (return on investment) of 500% 22% of PPC (pay-per-click / paid advertising) campaigns are able to reach a 500% ROI Search is the #1 driver of traffic to content sites beating social media by more than 300% 62% of American households are connected to the internet

Don’t think this is just an automotive thing; I could have easily singled out Insurance Agents, Boutique Retail Stores, Attorneys, Restaurants, or Home Improvement companies - each having unique strengths for specific keyword usage that largely goes un-tapped. I often hear how business owners had assumed the person building their website would have done this keyword and website optimization to make their website discoverable on search. While that was common just a few years ago, the complexity of search engine optimization [SEO] and search engine marketing [SEM] and of website design has divided them into separate disciplines over the years. Just as it is unlikely that the person digging the foundation for a house will be the same person nailing the shingles on the roof – so too is it unlikely that the same person designing your website has the same skills to successfully get it discovered by search engines and (most importantly) marketed to the right buyers. continued on page 76

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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

21


SMALL BUSINESS | Think Like an Olympian

think like an olympian

DECREASE TIME - WASTING & INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY by Lisa Shorr

For many of us, actually achieving Olympic status is more of a dream than a reality. However, just because we are not swimming the winning lap or breaking world records on the track does not mean we cannot “think” like one!

How you might ask? Well, for starters look at how you are utilizing your technology during the day. There are a number of ways to increase productivity by implementing some simple strategies to achieve success.

here are some award-winning suggestions: Run the Social Media sprint not the marathon… When it comes to Social Media, many of us are like marathon runners – we’re in for the long haul. Why are we compelled to look at all 118 photos of our friend’s trip to the Caribbean? Or read every string of Tweets posted by our favorite Tweeps locally and across the globe?

first, separate your personal and professional media presence. Personal: limit your personal postings to specific times of the day such as in the morning to send Birthday wishes and at the end of the day to get caught up on your friends posts. Professional: determine which social sites will work to best accomplish your

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

business goals – allowing you to reach your target market. Once again, allot specific times to strategically post to your targets and try to keep track of time. When it is time to write a proposal or call a prospect, close down your social media sites. Discipline is key here!

Follow the “rules” of the game… When competing in the Olympics, athletes must follow very specific rules to compete in each sport. Another time-saver is to apply specific “rules” to your email inbox directing groups of emails from the same sender to specific folders. This not only decreases the amount of mail in your inbox but organizes your email as well. Your inbox should contain current and pressing mail from clients and colleagues. This tip is great for all of those business newsletters you’ve signed up for but just don’t have the time to read. Or for important emails from various vendors or clients that provide quarterly reports and specials. There is just not enough time in the day to read each one! Store them in a special folder and when you have a few minutes (and you will if you follow my tips!) peruse those folders. Know your risks… With each triumph comes some risk. For your network, that risk comes in the form of a virus or spam or some other malicious attack on your network. All of these can significantly slow down your computer and make your programs and internet run extremely slow. When

researching on the net, don’t click on popup windows or advertisements. Many of them contain viruses that are waiting to attack your network. Spam emails are like spies. These malicious emails attach to

allot specific times to strategically post to your targets and try to keep track of time

your network and send information back to a vendor or other businesses seeking out your web search or shopping habits. Block them by making sure you have a good Anti-Virus package installed on your computer such as McAfee or Symantec. Take precautions to mitigate risk! We are not all that different from our Olympiad colleagues – always striving to do the best we can in our day’s work. And while we are cheering for them on the courts and uneven bars, our clients and employees can be cheering for our service response and productivity. The keys to success are organizing ourselves for the sprint, setting and following the rules and mitigating risk. Are you ready to go for the gold?

Lisa Shorr PC Troubleshooters www.pctrouble.com


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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | New Engagement Model

O2O

the new

engagement model

view as the new and most efficient engagement model – online to offline (O2O). At the heart of this approach is the belief that online tactics should mostly be used to drive targets offline for major impact marketing efforts. For example, a brand monitors Twitter conversations and sends out surprise gift-giving street teams to followers. Diving even deeper into O2O, consider the next level of fusing online and offline experiences by determining where each tactic will activate most effectively along the communication timeline.

by Dave Marcello

There is good reason for brands and marketers to be bullish on social media as a customer interaction platform. With millions of people logging into Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest (to name just a few) every single day, we’d be foolish to ignore the opportunity for direct and ongoing dialogue. However, there remains a significant disconnect between the way consumers use social media and how marketers view it. Consider these statistics:

• • •

88% of Facebook users never return to a Fan page once they “Like” it Only about 16%-18% of fans actually see brand posts in their Facebook newsfeeds Less than 5% of consumers desire brand offers via Facebook or Twitter...even those that gave permission to do so

Now, compare those numbers to research that states over 90% of brand-related word of mouth conversations happen in person. Offline, in-the-flesh engagement remains the undisputed champion of customer contact. This is the foundation of what I

Before Offline Experience: Here we find triggers or sparks that set the table for offline experiences. Utilize online systems to tease the upcoming event During Offline Experience: This is when participants utilize social (via mobile) to share their experiences with friends and family. Offer exclusive, real-time content that is easily shareable and helps consumers express their unique selves After Offline Experience: Recognize participants will go online to research and verify your brand via reviews, your website and social media channels, etc. This is a great time to close the communication loop and inspire further action customized to each person’s needs

Viewing digital marketing as a springboard for “hugs and handshakes” offline communication is an extremely valuable way to enhance the overall customer experience and position your brand in a meaningful light.

Dave Marcello Chief Disruptor | DISRUPTIVE

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

401 351 3036


Gamification | SMALL BUSINESS

GAMIFICATION an emerging trend in web design What would happen if mundane chores you do online like shopping for car insurance could be transformed into something fun, like a game? You’d be a lot more motivated to do those things, wouldn’t you? That’s the idea behind a little thing called “gamification.” Gamification is best described as the use of elements of game play for non-game activities. It also refers to a way of using game thinking to engage audiences and encourage them to complete tasks like filling out surveys, shopping, or reading articles. The word “gamification” is being tossed around the Internet a lot these days in much the same way everyone was talking about social media a while back. That took off, didn’t it? Big time. Gamification is becoming just as important as social media when it comes to engaging audiences and inspiring loyalty. I’m seeing it pop up in more and more places and soon, it’s going to be everywhere. This is because audiences today expect more engagement and reward from experiences than ever before. In this fast-paced, information age it’s getting harder and harder to grab eyeballs. Our old tricks for getting people to engage with us don’t work as well anymore. This is especially true with the younger generation. They’ve grown up with all this technology, and they’re very attuned to the mechanics of game play. Gamification is going to be the way to motivate them to pay attention and participate. Now, the idea of gamification isn’t really new. Anyone who’s ever had a child

knows that if you offer a cookie for dessert, but only after a clean plate, that offer of a sweet reward makes the broccoli slide right down! Gamification works on the same principle. If you’ve ever used frequent flier miles or participated in a rewards card program, you’ve been gamified.

GAMIFICATION CAN GREATLY IMPROVE THE WAY YOUR CUSTOMERS EXPERIENCE YOUR WEBSITE by Adam Harvey

A great example of what we’ve been talking about is the Nike+ website. With compatible personal GPS transceivers (iPhone, Nike Sport Watch GPS, Nike SportBand, etc) the website will give realtime feedback through the device, as well as provide a database to store that information. It lets you save your favorite routes and set goals. You can go back and track your progress over time. The website also provides guidance as to what steps to take next in your training program. What’s probably the most engaging part of the website is the social aspect. On the front page is a “what’s happening

now” section that shows the most recent results and activity in the country. You can compete against your fellow Americans or you can compete against your friends and contacts in a virtual “race.” Your run times can also be broadcast on facebook, because what’s the fun in winning if you can’t tell everyone about it? In this way, just by using the app and linking it with Facebook, users do the bottom-up marketing every time they sync with Nike+. But Nike+ is just one example of what is a rapidly emerging trend in web design. While not all gamified websites are going to be as elaborate as the Nike+ site, they can still employ some of the same mechanics. They can range from a simple points based ranking system that leverages the desire for achievement, to using effective web navigation tools like lightboxes or carousels to reduce page clutter and user confusion. Far from being an untested tactic, gamification has been around since forever—way before the Internet was even a thought. What is new, however, is applying the same mechanisms of positive reinforcement and interaction to what were previously static and mundane oneway streets of information dissemination. With the right design and mechanics, gamification can greatly improve the way your customers experience your website. Not only is a fun and rewarding experience great for PR, it just might inspire people to keep coming back to visit you.

Adam Harvey | GLAD WORKS | www.gladworks.com

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | The Ostrich Syndrome

THE

OSTRICH SYNDROME: Every business owner will eventually leave their business. The question is, will they leave on their own terms or someone else’s? It is estimated that 70% of baby boomerowned businesses are expected to change hands over the next 10 years (Robert Avery, Cornell University, February, 2006). The majority of a business owner’s wealth is usually tied up in their illiquid business. For example, if you owned Apple stock, you could call your investment advisor and turn that stock into cash within 24 hours. With your privately held business, you can’t do that. You have to plan to make it happen. Did you know that the average business owner spends 80 hours developing a business plan – at a time when their business is worth very little – and spends 6 hours planning for their exit out of the business – when their business is presumably at its greatest value (John Leonetti, Exiting Your Business, Protecting Your Wealth, 2008)? The lack of an exit strategy can result in a significant loss of this wealth. It is not a guarantee that a business owner will be able to leave their business when they want at the price they need. They need to plan for it to make it happen in order to meet their goals. So why aren’t business owners stepping up to the plate and planning for their eventual transitions?

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

It’s called the “Ostrich Syndrome.” There are many reasons for not confronting the inevitable. If it’s a family-owned business, there may be questions about who will take over the business. If the first generation has doubts about the second generation, this can stall efforts to create an exit strategy. According to an ROCG Survey done in 2007, business owners claim planning for their exit is a daunting process. They say, “it’s too early,” or “it’s too complex, wouldn’t know where to begin,” or “it’s too time consuming.” The result? They become an ostrich, stick their head in the ground, and do nothing. The logical thing to do would be to identify the competencies for the role, identify the gaps in the second generation, and create a plan to close the skills gap. However, too often these issues are handled in a more emotional manner. The first generation will often say, “It’s not time” or “I’m not ready to leave” rather than confront the issues head on. More complex family issues can also cause first generation business owners to stall plans for their exit. Another reason business owners don’t confront leaving their business is fear. Fear of change, fear of loss, fear of the unknown. Much of a person’s identity can be wrapped up in what they do – in other words, who I am is what I do. So, if I leave and stop doing what I do, who am I? In reality, we are so much more than

what we do. We have many roles in life. When one role stops, it makes room for another. The key is to find the roles that best suit the individual. The business and the work itself have often provided the business owner with meaning and purpose in their life and a sense of fulfillment. It is important that a plan be made for replacing the business and the work with another role or activity that has meaning and purpose and is fulfilling or the loss will be deeply felt. A few examples include mentoring, volunteering, consulting, etc.

much of a person’s identity can be wrapped up in what they do – so, if I leave and stop doing what I do, who am I? There are many risks associated with not planning in advance of your leaving the business. These include: not meeting your business, family and personal goals; selling your business for less than it’s worth; family in-fighting and discord; transitioning at the wrong time; and not


by Mark D. Lee and Karen Benz

CONFRONTING THE INEVITABLE having a successor developed (ROCG Survey 2007). Developing an exit strategy and exit plan can mitigate these risks significantly. An exit strategy sets the context for the exit plan. A key element of the exit strategy is setting goals. Answering questions such as, what do you want this transition out of your business to do for your life? and what are your personal/family obligations? are essential to the exit plan. As you can see, the focus of the exit plan is on the business owner rather than on the business. This is a departure from traditional business planning. In addition to setting goals, the exit planning process includes determining financial readiness and mental readiness to leave the business and enter the next phase of life, identifying any gaps, determining business readiness, identifying exit options, determining the best exit option, and executing the option. Let’s take a look at each step in the process:

Setting Goals: A few key points to consider... • Would you want to transfer the business to family? • Get the most money for the business? • Diversify personally and keep working? • Diversify and give back to your employees? • Transfer the business to the management team?

Financial Readiness: To determine the business owner’s financial readiness, we calculate a personal balance sheet and cash flow projections. Next is to look at all assets, including the business value. We then determine how much annual income can be generated by these assets. This income plus cash flows from any other income flows is matched against projected outflows. If the income exceeds the outflows, the business owner is ready to move forward. If not, you have a “value gap.” When there is a value gap, we advise business owners to continue working in the business, work to increase its value, and increase other investments while still owning the business.

Mental Readiness: To determine the business owner’s mental readiness, we meet with the business owner and their spouse (or partner if applicable) to discuss and plan for such things as their thoughts/feelings about the transition, and to focus the business owner on what they are moving to, rather than on what they are leaving. We also work with them to create a plan for what they will do in the next phase of their life.

Business Readiness: Is the business ready to be transferred

or sold? Is the business owner operating his/her business as if it were for sale? We determine what the business owner needs to do to ready the business for sale.

Exit Options: There are two types of exit options available... • Internal Transfers include: Family Buyout, Management Buyout, Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP), and Gifting • External Transfers include: Sales to - a Synergistic Buyer, an Investment Buyer and to a Private Equity Recapitalization Buyer

Determining the Best Option: The business owner makes the decision as to which exit option serves them best in conjunction with their exit planner. The decision is based on input gathered from the financial, business and mental readiness components.

Executing the Option: Included in the exit plan is a timeline which delineates an ideal timeline for execution of the exit option. Of course, there are variables such as the economy, significant industry changes, family dynamics, etc., all of which can and will impact the timeline.

Mark D. Lee, CPA, MBA | Business Legacy Consulting Karen Benz, MS | Business Legacy Consulting

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | First Social Enterprise Certification

Rhode Island makes strides in the field of social enterprise by Allie Smith

Think of the last time you visited a grocery store or your local café —the shelves likely contained products stamped with “Fair Trade Certified,” “USDA Organic,” or some other insignia of environmental and social accreditation. Today’s consumers are increasingly concerned with the origin of their purchases. Their eyes are trained for these labels and markers of certification: buyers value the ability to determine a product’s environmental impact, its impact on growers, or the producer’s treatment of animals all in one glance.

A New Certification in Town Current certifications tend to focus on the health or environmental impacts of a product, but that’s not all consumers care about. According to research conducted in the UK, 75% of consumers surveyed prefer to buy products from a “social enterprise,” an organization that uses most of its profit to benefit society and the environment. Interest in the mission and ethics behind business is on the rise. Identifying what is a social enterprise, however, is easier said than done; it can be a research-intensive process that most consumers

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do not have the time for. Just as the USDA Organic and Fair Trade certifications help consumers easily identify safe or ethically traded products, a comparable “social enterprise certification” is needed to help consumers quickly recognize that the products they are purchasing are produced by certified social enterprises. Both the buyer and the social enterprise community will benefit from a reliable and rigorous certification system.

Made in Rhode Island Here in Providence, the first social enterprise certification and branding program is underway. In 2011, Social Venture Partners Rhode Island launched “Buy with Heart” in an effort to grow awareness of social ventures and help consumers identify social enterprises. To access the many benefits of being a Buy with Heart affiliated enterprise (which includes brand recognition and presence on an online retail shop), an organization must first be Buy with Heart certified. Becoming certified is a multi-step process. The first step requires completing the BWH Verification Survey, a tool designed to establish if an organization is a social enterprise. Factors such as the organization’s mission, its impact, and its operational practices are evaluated. The Buy with Heart assessment focuses

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: A BUY WITH HEART STICKER, AND FOUR SOCIAL ENTERPRISES: THE PROVIDENCE GRANOLA PROJECT, RUNA TEA, BIG PICTURE SODA, AND RIVERZEDGE ARTS. PHOTO COURTESY OF A BETTER WORLD BY DESIGN.

The First Social Enterprise Certification


First Social Enterprise Certification | SMALL BUSINESS on four criteria: first, and most importantly, the organization must “hold a social mission as the primary reason for being”. Second, it must strive to balance serving the common good and generating profit. Third, the organization must create a veritable impact. And lastly, the organization must use multiple bottom lines- social, environmental, and economical- to measure this impact. A low score on the survey suspends the certification process; a high score permits the organization to continue in the certification process. Those organizations that do not “pass” the survey are provided with suggestions for improvement if they should choose to re-apply for certification. Those candidates who pass next meet with a Buy with Heart staff member to confirm the validity of the self-assessment.

Additionally, Buy with Heart has employed students and recent graduates from universities across the state.

Different Than the Rest The unique Buy with Heart Certification process has many benefits to the national community of social enterprises. First, it’s start-up friendly. The combination of a self and peer evaluation eliminates the need for a third-party certification, which can be expensive. Second, the Buy with Heart certification builds community. Becoming certified is the beginning, not the end of the process. In addition to reviewing new applicants for certification, members must participate in annual community learning forums organized by SVPRI to foster further community involvement. “It is really important for our members to be at the core of the decision-making process,” says Ramirez, noting that new standards and benchmarks will be discussed and improved as necessary at annual gatherings.

75% of consumers surveyed prefer to buy products from a “social enterprise”

Drawing from the fields of academia, law, and medicine, the final step towards certification involves a peer review process. To attain this final stamp of approval, the applicant must be reviewed by a panel of previously certified organizations- fellow social enterprises. This step capitalizes on the idea that a certified social enterprise will want to maintain the strength of the Buy with Heart brand; they will not admit a new member unless their mission and practices are solid representatives of the trademark. Developing the Buy with Heart certification was a collaborative process among business leaders across Rhode Island. “From the beginning, Buy with Heart has drawn on the talents of various organizations and individuals willing to give their energy to the cause,” says Kelly Ramirez, Executive Director at SVPRI and director of the Buy with Heart initiative. Robert Leaver, professor and director of the Pawtucket-based think tank New Commons, contributed crucial expertise. Elizabeth Bennet, a PhD student at Brown University, provided significant scholastic contribution by publishing an analytical paper entitled, “A Social Enterprise Verification: Applying Lessons from the Fair Trade Movement.”

There are several hundred social enterprises in Rhode Island. Our small state has long been recognized as a hub of social innovation; the influence of the highly creative and entrepreneurial student community and the interconnected nature of our communities are vital components of the state’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. It is no surprise that great strides in the field of social entrepreneurship are happening here. Don’t be surprised if sooner rather than later, the Buy with Heart logo appears in your grocery store or local café.

Buy With Heart is an awareness brand and umbrella campaign created by Social Venture Partners Rhode Island. Buy With Heart provides marketing resources and opportunities to social ventures so they can scale and maximize impact. Visit www.buywithheart.org, the one-stop-shop for more than 100 national social enterprise products and services.

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | Technology Bubble Going To Burst his is a fascinating time to be alive and to be doing the work I get to do as a consultant where I focus upon trying to understand and then help my clients respond to emergent conditions. And lately I have been watching a fascinating one emerging! Never have we experienced so much accelerating uncertainty and widespread economic and global changes on such a grand scale. And much of what we are seeing is being driven by exponential advancements in technology.

Another aspect of this relationship is that technologies are not limited by human limitations. So as they get faster the gap between their capabilities and our abilities to handle or control them gets wider and wider, moment by moment.

This represents a staggering development in societal evolution. And the ripples are wide spread and are multiplying and morphing in ways that we can neither predict nor effectively adapt to. There is no way human evolution can keep pace with the evolution of modern technology. Yet the one that is proven beyond a doubt is that the nature of the relationship between humans and technology is that humans leverage existing technologies to create faster and more powerful technologies faster and faster. This means the cycle is going to continue AND accelerate as we move into the future.

Could it be that we have become the first species to evolve our surroundings to a point where we are no longer capable of surviving in them? With the runaway combination that we call “Apps and Connectivity” we are using technology to accelerate the speed, interconnectedness and therefore the complexity of our world beyond anything ever imagined and I would argue, beyond our human ability to keep pace with. 



I can send an email or a text around the world and get a response in seconds.

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RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

Significant increases in both the number of incidents and the sizes of global economic,

So for me, the question becomes this: Could it be that humans, through the proliferation of, and the exponential growth of technology and connectivity, “created” a world society that is far too complex, interconnected and fast paced for us to be able to manage or sustain? I have to wonder how close we are to reaching the breaking point of our civilization’s ability to survive at its current rate of progression. We are unique as a species in that we have the ability, by and large, to create the environment in which we live. So far this has helped us to evolve in a relatively steady upward trend both consciously and culturally over the tens of thousands of years of our existence. 
But while we have used technology to separate and insulate us from the natural world I’m wondering the solution to our survival has become our biggest threat to it.

Modern technologies have not only made the world flat but it has also virtually eliminated time and geography as limitations to communications across the entire planet.

And the signs of stress this is causing are appearing everywhere.

is the

t ec h n by Jeffrey S. Deckman

political and social chaos are being experienced beyond anything we have experienced before have all been either created by or accelerated by the use of technology.


Technology Bubble Going To Burst | SMALL BUSINESS As a result our large and lumbering governmental, educational and economic institutions upon which the “modern world” has been built are incapable of reacting to the pace of the modern world.

Neither our societal models nor our bodies, minds or spirits were designed for this level of complexity or the level of, and speed of, change that the modern world is thrusting upon us constantly and exponentially. We are at the mercy of our technologies more than at any time in our history. The tail is officially wagging the dog more and more. This can be demonstrated by the increasingly documented incidents of “addiction” to emails, cell phones and technology at all levels and layers of our society which are being documented and attested to. We are losing control. And it is showing.

olog y bubble going to burst us?

Literally all of them were designed to succeed in conditions that were infinitely slower, more predictable and less connected than the world technology has created.


We have punched our ticket for the “Technology Express” and none of us can get off of it now.
It’s like we built a rocket, loaded it with high octane petro, strapped our butts to it and lit the fuse not knowing how far or fast it is capable of going. And now that we are on it we are realizing that we lack the ability to understand it, steer it, stop it or to even slow it down. 



And that bad boy is picking up speed and starting to wildly careen out of control. None of us have ever traveled this fast, this far, or to this place. That is why I believe that we have, for the first time since perhaps the collapse of the Roman Empire, created a world whose complexities FAR exceed our abilities to live in them, and if we haven’t gotten there yet we soon will be. 

And just like my dear friend Wyle E.

Coyote who, when screaming through the air strapped to an ACME rocket, first sees the canyon wall he is going to smash into we need to surrender ourselves to the most probable predictable outcome because it’s gonna hurt like HECK..... Blink....blink. 



there is no way human evolution can keep pace with the evolution of modern technology

But like Wyle AND the Terminator, we too will “Be Back”. It just may take a while for us to pick up the pieces, reestablish the balance between humans and technologies and put humans back in control. But in the meantime it is going to be one heck of a ride and I am fascinated to be a part of it and to witness this amazing time in history. So while the thought may be a bit unsettling every generation has its major challenges. Such as WWII, the Great Depression, the decade of the 60’s, the Civil War, etc, etc, etc...Just another day on planet earth. So for me, I am going to try to get back in balance a bit now, before it is forced upon me. Get back to the basics that worked so well for so long by putting humans first, get more disconnected down time, go hang out in a forest and re-experience the world as we were designed to experience it more and more. And we will just see where it all goes from here.......

Jeffrey Deckman Capability Accelerators www.capabilityaccelerators.com

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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(+) Thinking™ can transform into (+) Learning at

Alex and Ani Corporate University by Dennis Rebelo

Momentum in manufacturing happens if the marketing “stars” align and the bullwhip effect has been tamed. If you work in supply chain management or recall your MBA days, maybe you remember the Near Beer study? Forio. com provides not only a wonderful explanation of the conundrum framed by the study but also offers a nice (but frustrating) simulation game. For those folks unfamiliar with bullwhipping, imagine the complexities of obtaining the raw materials for a jewelry manufacturing process, client backlogs from demand, wholesaler management and inventory distribution, and retail sales. Now, imagine that the upsurge in demand keeps growing and forces the manufacturer to “catch up” as work increases by two and

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three-fold as Olympic demand lights up more sales. What a whipping effect! I recall when Saybrook professor Doug Walton introduced the “bullwhip” effect to my doctoral systems class as if it were yesterday. The game of “catching up” is a systems theory game germane to proving why organizational complexity is indeed a reality to any organization. On a Monday evening (4) months ago, I returned from facilitating the company retreat for Alex and Ani, a business that produces energy jewelry. Alex and Ani is actually a (+) Energy™ company developing a lifestyle brand around this concept. This inaugural event had more than touches of humanistic leadership, cultural intelligence lessons, and collaborative teaming touches. It embedded the courage to

create and self-express in art workshops, “appreciation circles,” and film screenings. The positive-feeling tone was set and the shift towards interdependence was clear and it’s still fresh in my mind. In a line of business such as jewelry making via (+) Energy™, the bullwhip effect can promote confusion and contention in organizational life ultimately leading to an emotional bullwhipping too. Emotions can run lean before rushing to highs and even overflowing as the amount of work varies hindering organizational productivity. We all know that people responding to their emotions frantically can whip us all. In The Power of Framing, Gail Fairhurst discussed how “emotional contagions” making the statement that negative “contagious emotions” create toxic work


Alex and Ani Corporate University | SMALL BUSINESS worlds. On the flip side, by framing or re-framing events with positive language, we can create a workplaces filled with folks exemplifying not only what positive emotions can sound like, but what they also feel like in organizational life. I like this alternative. Learning to be response-able at work, however, requires formalization of such a stance. Alex and Ani has opted to support the human side of the enterprise. By creating a Corporate University supporting learning journeys, courses and workshops to enlighten self-awareness en route to organizational transformation and collective consciousness, Carolyn Rafaelian (the Founder) and Giovanni Feroce (the CEO), have added humanity to the work equation. After all, we all know that to be Y O U at work in the 21st Century requires some educational moments; it simply does not come so easily. I just completed (2) sequential cohorts teaching the PLUS™ Core Training program now required for all Alex and Ani organizational members. The PLUS™ Course ensures emotions and communications are clear and clean. PLUS™ has (4) modules: P =Positivity, Attitude, & Emotional Intelligence, L = Language Use, U=Understanding, and S= The Synthesizing Mind. Can you imagine an organizational caring to ensure positivity happens by making such (+) Thinking™ convert to a learning reality for its members? Not every company leads a “charmed life,” like the folks at Alex and Ani, nor does every company necessarily have a manufacturing facility to creatively engage team members when launching retreatlike events, nor do they stake the claim that people matter by building a Corporate University and housing it in a Downtown building worthy of such a cause. What every organization does have, however, is creativity, and courage. Converting courage to a system of supporting learning is the key though. Alex and Ani’s

Corporate University proves to be such an example of courage converted. As human beings, getting to “love” and “service” as guiding principles takes complete engagement, total commitment. By studying creativity, courage, collaboration, and cultural consciousness as key themes, along with dialogue, identity’s role in work life, and rethinking retail encounters, the human side of Alex and Ani is being realized birthing story after story of positive energy internally fueling the production of a product, a brand, that is pure.

if learning at work is ever offered to you, engage it with vigor and care You see, life is complicated enough without manufacturing complexities or emotional ones, but that is life-it’s complex. To add to that complexity, we live in a hypercompetitive world rough with added pitfalls. By focusing on the power of the collective formally and adding individual learning programs to encourage transformative thinking at work, the mission of loving one another along the way and honoring during each conversation can happen for Alex and Ani team members. After all, those “humans” that create the positive charges inside the organization actually infuse the supply chain indirectly so that their mission can be actualized. Abraham Maslow would be proud.

The charm I wear around my next daily is not only a “been there-done that” artifact signifying my retreat experience. It will undoubtedly serve as a reminder that it takes effort and focus at times to ensure ONE+ is lived out in daily practices as the President of ALEX AND ANI UNIVERSITY Professional Development LLC. The Alex and Ani Core PLUS™ learning journey may be a course, but full engagement of the material is a daily choice I am witnessing Alex and Ani (+) folks make. From my perspective I have been blessed to receive feedback from the organization-learning happening live from front row seats as the President of this Corporate University. Not all Corporate Universities take the time to plan how organizational systems and systems thinking with a dose of humanistic studies can be parlayed into special transformation programs. I am both appreciative and honored, but mostly spreading the word lately with more enthusiasm because what you see and feel with this organization is actually what you get, then some. But, (+) Thinking™ requires (+) work. Whether you are inspired to learn more about this emerging international organization or spark learning in your workplace, be sure to know and respect that learning journeys should be difference-makers today. And, if learning at work is ever offered to you, engage it with vigor and care. As an adult learner such opportunities can in fact be not just organizational difference-makers but life difference-makers that ignite selfreflection and unsuspecting personal transformation.

Dennis Rebelo University Business Consultants www.universitypdc.com

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | Advice For Joining Charity Boards

Advice to Business People Joining Charity Boards by Gayle L. Gifford

Congratulations! You’ve just joined the board of directors of a charitable nonprofit. If this is a new experience for you, you are in good company. Many businesses today encourage their staff to serve on nonprofit boards. You’ll share the experience of board service with individuals from all walks of life. A few may already be old hands at nonprofit governance. A rarer few have attended workshops or studied some of the literature on nonprofit board governance. Many, however, are learning on-the-job... just like you. Maybe your organization provided you with a comprehensive orientation to help you start your work on the board? Maybe you were teamed with a more experienced director who is serving as your mentor? With luck, you joined a superb board that’s filled with great role models. It’s not unusual to feel a little unsure of yourself at first. You should find the reception welcoming, as most nonprofit staff and directors relish the opportunity to benefit from the business savvy, strategic mindset, professional connections, and access to resources that directors from corporate backgrounds can contribute. Yet, I frequently hear complaints that all of those desired qualities seem to evaporate as soon as a business person is elected to a board. And I often hear business people describe their frustration with their board service. So here are a few insights about nonprofits that I’ve realized over the last 30 years -- and a few tips to help make your board service more rewarding. Let me start with the insights. Nonprofits have a different bottom line. In business, the bottom line is easy to understand - it’s all about profit. Even if your business advocates a dual bottom line (social responsibility and profit), profit doesn’t take second place. In a nonprofit, there is no private inurement. The bottom line is the delivery of a public benefit - for example, an artistic contribution, environmental protection, or health promotion.

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Determining what that public benefit is, how to deliver it and how to evaluate performance isn’t always easy. Imagine you are on the board of an organization dedicated to the promotion of practices for good mental health. Can you concretely define what success looks like? What evidence would you point to? What changes would your small agency claim responsibility for? These are the challenges that will face you as a director of a nonprofit board. Nonprofits are valued for their prudence, commitment to service and fiscal restraint, yet are expected to produce significant community benefits. In the for-profit world, business owners are rewarded for taking risks - usually with other people’s money (venture capital). Undercapitalization is warned against. And a personality like Donald Trump is lionized for his opulent lifestyle and forgiven for past business failures.

quality research and information are essential for good decision-making. ethical behavior and accountability maintain public goodwill Not so in the nonprofit world. Here, individuals are expected to make sacrifices for the common good in the name of service. Making do with less is a familiar mantra. Pick up a business publication, and the virtuous charities are the ones with the lowest overhead.

Meanwhile, nonprofits are being admonished to “act more like businesses.” In reality, most nonprofits are extraordinarily small, much more comparable to “micro-enterprises.” According to data available through the National Center for Charitable Statistics, over 80% of registered U.S. public charities had annual revenues below $250,000 in 2004. At these smallest of nonprofits, nominally-paid staff or their volunteer leadership often have limited experience in nonprofit management and resource development -- yet they are expected to operate as efficiently and effectively as multimillion dollar, professionally staffed organizations.


Advice For Joining Charity Boards | SMALL BUSINESS It’s surprising that these tiny organizations get anything accomplished at all. But they do! From the neighborhood soup kitchen feeding the hungry to the volunteer land trust preserving hundreds of acres of open space to the volunteer ethnic organization staging an annual cultural festival for 20,000 participants, many tiny nonprofits are making significant and valuable contributions to their communities. Nonprofits are expected to consult with their stakeholders and to collaborate with their colleagues. It’s not unusual for business people to comment on the pace of decision-making that occurs at many nonprofits. Change may happen more slowly than they are used to. Because nonprofits are accountable to their community for doing good, stakeholders (like consumers, funders, politicians) expect to have some say in their functioning. If your nonprofit depends on public generosity for a sizeable portion of its revenue base, you need to ensure that your constituents understand and support the actions you take, or you put at risk their goodwill and continued financial support. Decisions and actions both big and small often rely on volunteers. If a nonprofit has no or limited staff, volunteers are performing much of the work. The biggest decisions of all - where to dedicate resources, what community needs to focus on, and what strategies to deploy - are made by volunteers, you, and the board. Imagine your business self managing a motley crew of unpaid staff with varied levels of expertise, skills and experience. Family and work demands always take priority over their volunteer commitments. Managing volunteers requires all of the skills and tools you would use with your paid staff, absent one obvious and highly motivating reward - money. Get the idea of the challenges you face? Despite these differences, there are many experiences that nonprofits and businesses have in common. Whether for- or nonprofit, all enterprises need to be responsive to their marketplace. All enterprises need business acumen and effective operations to be successful. Quality research and information are essential for good decision-making. Ethical behavior and accountability maintain public goodwill. And every enterprise needs the structures, systems, people, skills, strategy and selfreflection that are essential elements of success.

Gayle L. Gifford, ACFRE President Cause & Effect Inc.

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | Independent Contractor Or Employee?

independent contractor (self-employed) There are many tax provisions that apply to small business owners but determining how to classify people that are working for a small business is very important. It is critical that business owners correctly determine whether the individuals providing services are employees or independent contractors.

other factors indicate that the worker is an independent contractor. There is no “magic” or set number of factors that “makes” the worker an employee or an independent contractor, and no one factor stands alone in making this determination. Also, factors which are relevant in one situation may not be relevant in another.

Generally, employers must withhold income taxes, withhold and pay Social Security and Medicare taxes, and pay unemployment tax on wages paid to an employee. They do not generally have to withhold or pay any taxes on payments to independent contractors.

The keys are to look at the entire relationship, consider the degree or extent of the right to direct or control, and finally, to document each of the factors used in coming up with the determination.

Determining Whether the Individuals Providing Services are Employees or Contractors In determining whether the person providing services is an employee or independent contractor, all information that provides evidence of the degree of control and independence must be considered. Facts that provide evidence of the degree of control and independence fall into three categories: 1. Behavioral: Does the company control or have the right to control what the worker does and how the worker does his or her job? 2. Financial: Are the business aspects of the worker’s job controlled by the payer? (these include things like how worker is paid, whether expenses are reimbursed, who provides tools/supplies, etc.) 3. Type of Relationship: Are there written contracts or employee type benefits (i.e. pension plan, insurance, vacation pay, etc.)? Will the relationship continue and is the work performed a key aspect of the business? Businesses must weigh all these factors when determining whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor. Some factors may indicate that the worker is an employee, while

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there is no “magic” or set number of factors that “makes” the worker an employee or an independent contractor Form SS-8 If, after reviewing the three categories of evidence, it is still unclear whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor, Form SS-8, Form SS-8, Determination of Worker Status for Purposes of Federal Employment Taxes and Income Tax Withholding (PDF) can be filed with the IRS. The form may be filed by either the business or the worker. The IRS will review the facts and circumstances and officially determine the worker’s status. Be aware that it can take at least six months to get a determination, but a business that continually hires the same type of workers to perform particular services may want to consider filing the Form SS-8. Employment Tax Obligations Once a determination is made (whether by the business or by the


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Consequences of Treating an Employee as an Independent Contractor If an employer classifies an employee as an independent contractor and has no reasonable basis for doing so, they may be liable for employment taxes for that worker. If the employer have a reasonable basis for not treating a worker as an employee, they may be relieved from having to pay employment taxes for that worker. To get this relief, the employer must file all required federal information returns on a basis consistent with the treatment of the worker. Voluntary Classification Settlement Program The Voluntary Classification Settlement Program (VCSP) is a new optional program that provides taxpayers with an opportunity to reclassify their workers as employee for future tax periods for employment tax purposes with partial relief from federal employment taxes for eligible taxpayers that agree to prospectively treat their workers (or a class or group of workers) as employees. To participate in this new voluntary program, the taxpayer must meet certain eligibility requirements, apply to participate in the VCSP by filing Form 8952, Application for Voluntary Classification Settlement Program, and enter into a closing agreement with the IRS. Visit IRS.gov for more information on how to classify your workers and to get answers to your tax-related small business questions.

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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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TOP

SMALL BUSINESS | Your Business Needs To Get Organized

five reasons your business

needs to get

organized

by Kristin Carcieri-MacRae

Are you losing time, money, and clients due to your disorganization? Here are 5 reasons your business needs to get organized: Reduce Stress. We all have stressful situations that arise in our workday. When you are organized and have systems in place, it is much easier to handle a stressful situation. If you are disorganized, you are more prone to stress on a daily basis. Have a working filing system, have a system for everything you do in your office. Organized people recover quicker than disorganized people when a stressful situation occurs. The disorganized person will waste time, and energy searching for files, phone numbers, or that important email and it will take them longer to recover from the situation. The organized person handles the stress because they know where everything is in their office and they handle the stress and go about their day. Isn’t reducing stress a good reason to get organized? Enjoy more free time. Time management and organization go hand in hand. Keep a running to-do list every day. On Friday, take a look at the week coming up to get an idea of what you have scheduled and where you have to be, make a to-do list from that. Every night before you leave work be sure you have a to-do list for the next day. To-do lists will keep you on

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Your Business Needs To Get Organized | SMALL BUSINESS

track. If you spend countless hours in the week searching for files, documents or emails, you are losing precious time that could be spent doing more productive work. I assure you if you plan ahead you will have more free time to enjoy with your family, exercising or spending it however you would like. Save money. Have you been so disorganized that you are paying your bills late or paying them late because you can’t find them? Your credit score drops when you pay bills late and your interest rates will increase. Do you store your supplies in one area? If not, you will be spending money on duplicate items you already own. When was the last time you evaluated the contracts you have with your office suppliers? I assure you, if you are disorganized, you are throwing money out the window. More energy. When you are organized, you will have more energy! You won’t waste time searching for items. When you consume yourself with clutter or disorganization, your mind will be cluttered too, which will weigh on you mentally. The biggest reason to get organized! Your clients will have more confidence in you. How your clients perceive you is very important. We all know the saying, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Picture this scenario: You have a potential client visiting your office for the first time. You have paperwork, business cards, files, etc. all over your desk. You are working off piles on the floor and even worse, you struggle to search for something when your potential client is in your office. As a potential client visiting your office, I would ask myself the following questions: Will they misplace my personal information, due to their disorganization? Will they take care of my business as efficiently as I would like them to?

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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | Where’s The Traffic?

now that your blog or

WHERE IS THE by Lisa Buben

There are many ways to get traffic to your website and/or blog. Here is a list of 40 websites. 35 of which you may not have heard of before. Some of these websites require you to fill in as much information about your website or blog as you can. Some let you even put in product images and descriptions. Some websites are as simple as only putting the URL in. Some will allow you to instantly be up on their website, others can take months before you show up there. Other websites will require to you put a link to their website on your homepage or resource page. Here is the list: 1. Manta : Provides free company profiles and company information on U.S. and International companies. 2. Merchant Circle : This is a directory where you can interact with other small businesses and send invites. 3. Hot Frog : This directory allows you to put up product images and update as often as you want. Great to put your new product lines or events. 4. Twellow : A Twitter directory with categories. 5. Digg : A popular social bookmark website. 6. Stumble Upon : Another social bookmark site 7. Yelp : Great for brick and mortar businesses where people put reviews on. 8. Scoop It : Content re-sharing website. 9. She Told Me : Another social bookmark site.

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10. XeeMee : A place to display all your social profiles in one place. 11. Twitter Chats : Great way to connect with others in your niche : you can Google online to see when they will take place and join in with their hashtag. 12. Google Hangouts : The newest online social place to hang out with like minded businesses on Google+. 13. AllTop : A directory of news displayed by topics where you can submit your blog. It may take months to receive an approval or rejection. 14. The Buffer : A great tool to spread out your tweets and Facebook posts but it also displays your business name there as well. 15. PR Org : A place to put your press releases online. 16. The Wall Directory : A directory to submit your website. 17. Zimbo : A place to submit your blog for added exposure. 18. We Follow : Another Twitter directory that goes by categories. 19. SlideShare : A place to display your expertise via Powerpoint presentations. It is also interactive. 20. Squidoo : Another social bookmark website that is a bit complicated. You need to set time aside for this website. 21. Pro.com Press Releases : Another great place to submit your press releases online and it is also a directory. 22. On Top List : A directory for your blog. 23. DMOZ Directory : This one can take years to get on : they generally accept websites that have a Google

Page Rank of 5+. Google ranking takes time. Google really seems to like this directory. 24. Brown Book.net : Another directory that you can import your logo and company info and invite others. Retail: The following is a list of websites for retailers to place their logos and profiles as well as products. Some are for coupons and others are “Social Shopping” : Where people search for things to buy and comment on or recommend to others. These are great places to put your best product images. 1. This Next : A social shopping website. 2. The Fancy : A social shopping site similar to Pinterest but has been around longer. 3. Stylehive : A social shopping website. 4. ShopWiki : This one you submit your feed to and they will feature all stores on a particular product and show prices. Be careful : sometimes they do post the wrong prices, they generally respond to emails on it. 5. CouponCactus : A place to share your coupons but you must have their link on your website. 6. RetailMeNot : A popular coupon site but you cannot easily if at all change it, so be careful what you offer there. 7. SnapShot : Another coupon website to find deals. 8. UpFront : Another social site that uses your product feed. 9. Foursquare : The infamous check in site, great for brick and mortar and more interactive than ever before!


Where’s The Traffic? | SMALL BUSINESS edc_bbri_ad_final.pdf 1 1/13/12

website is up,

TRAFFIC?

10. Coupon picks : Another place to share your coupon offers. 11. Tjoos : Another coupon site. And of course the big ones you must know by now are: 1. Facebook : You must have a Facebook page by now, right? 2. Twitter : If not, what are you waiting for? 3. Pinterest : The most popular social website now for sharing images and just about everything else. 4. Google+ : Google of course loves this one : so start your page today! 5. LinkedIn : A great professional social website even for retailers or small businesses to have a presence and participate.

to Netcraft. The Internet is still growing by leaps and bounds. The March numbers were up by 31.4 million (5.1%) over the previous month. Don’t get lost in the shuffle. Check out these 40 website resources.

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There are also other places that are “niche” specific for you to check out. For example; restaurants have many more places they can be for reviews and menu listings. Just Google your niche with the word directory or reviews and you’ll find more places you can get listed. Don’t ever think once you build a website they will JUST come. It takes time, promotion, new and traditional marketing along with stamina to get traffic flowing to your new website. There are over 644 million active websites as of March 2012 according

Lisa Buben Fancy Scrubs www.fancyscrubs.com

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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12:55 P


SMALL BUSINESS | Use The Tuesday Technique

use the TUESDAY technique by Dr. Ronald G. Shapiro

Do you have a task which you really should complete, but it just is not getting done? The task might be designing a new brochure. Alternatively, the task might be painting your store or organizing your store room. If so, consider using the Tuesday Project Management Technique to complete your task successfully. The technique is very simple and it works!!! Here’s how to prepare to use the Tuesday Technique: 1. Describe, in writing, what the current state of affairs is. 2. Write today’s date next to the current state of affairs. 3. Describe, in writing, what the result of your project will be. 4. Write a realistic completion date next to the results statement. If the date you selected is not a Tuesday, extend the deadline to the following Tuesday if the project can be completed a few days later than originally projected. If completion cannot be delayed a few additional days, shorten the project date to the previous Tuesday. 5. Enter, on a separate line, between today’s date and the completion date every single Tuesday between the two dates. 6. Break the project into a series of steps and write, in detail, what you

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will complete by each of the Tuesdays next to the Tuesday date. Now, select a friend, colleague, manager or employee to whom who you will report your progress on each of the dates specified. Explain the following rules to the person you will report to: 1. You will be helping me to complete a critical project which I have not managed to complete. 2. I must report to you every Tuesday, without exception on my progress on the project. 3. If it has been a difficult week, I may do less than what the schedule shows, but I will never delay a Tuesday reporting date. I will always complete something each Tuesday. 4. If I do less than what the schedule shows, I’ll also update the schedule to show you how I will complete the project on time (or show you a revised completion date, if this is possible).

There are two critical elements to the Tuesday technique: 1. Each completion date must be a Tuesday. 2. You must not miss any dates. The Tuesday technique is different from other techniques because it specifies completion dates of Tuesdays rather than Fridays. The reason for this is

as a final fail-safe one has tuesday to catch up on what they did not do the previous week, over the weekend or on monday. that Friday is a common completion date, one that many people target. On the other hand, they may miss the Friday date and then the project may stop. With the Tuesday technique, one can set a goal of completing by Friday, but if it does not happen one


Use The Tuesday Technique | SMALL BUSINESS

Depending upon the circumstances, I’ve suggested a few enhancements to the Tuesday Technique such as placing a stuffed animal in a prominent spot to serve as a reminder to complete the task (it worked!). Other enhancements to the Tuesday technique might include adding a reward to the Tuesday reporting. While I have not yet recommended using a day other than a Tuesday, under special circumstances I might recommend a different day. One of these circumstances might be for an individual who as a 5 day work week, but celebrates their weekend on days other than Saturday/Sunday. I would recommend this individual set their target date on the second day of their work week.

I’ve recommended this technique since October, 2000 when I learned it from Ohio State University Professor of Pharmacy Philip J. Schneider at the Latiolais Leadership Forum. I have received feedback that the technique has been helpful, leading to project completion. In at least one case the person decided to cancel the project. Even in this case, the Tuesday technique was effective because it drove closure to a project which had been in an incomplete status for a long time. The individual subsequently chose a different way to achieve their goal. While not everyone whom I’ve recommended the technique to implements it, I have not heard of instances of the technique failing. So, if you have some projects which have been incomplete for a long time (or if you are simply looking for a more efficient way to work) consider trying the Tuesday technique.

snapshotcontest

has the weekend to make up for it. When that doesn’t happen, one still has Monday to make up for what did not happen during the previous week or the weekend. As a final fail-safe one has Tuesday to catch up on what they did not do the previous week, over the weekend or on Monday.

we (are) small business

to help get it done it’s not a paycheck, but a passion. not a job, but a journey. not what you do, but who you are. show the world why you don’t just “heart” small business. you are small business.

}

enter & vote: Quill and Cursor on Facebook

presented by

I would like to thank industrial consultant Dr. Margarita Posada for comments on an earlier draft of this article.

Dr. Ronald G. Shapiro Independent Consultant in Human Factors Learning and Human Resources

with support from RISBJ

You could win $4,000 in marketing & advertising to make your business better! www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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On midnight on March 24, 1989 the United States suffered the second worst oil spill in U.S. History. That was when the Exxon Valdez hit ground while navigating through very shallow waters. In addition to the Exxon Valdez and more local oil spills and cruise ship groundings, there was an epidemic of Atlantic Right Whales and other marine mammals being hit and killed by vessels. It was obvious that a new generation of navigation tools was needed and in 2001, Rhode Island based company FarSounder was born. www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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FARSOUNDER | 3D Sonar Systems

A WHOLE NEW VISION

The company was founded by Matthew Zimmerman, a former engineering student at URI with a degree in Ocean Engineering, as well as French and German, and URI Professor Dr. James H. Miller. While at the University, and later at Pyrcon LLC, Matthew and Dr. Miller began working on Forward Looking Sonar and decided to follow up on their research by starting their company to address these issues. Chief Executive Office, Cheryl M. Zimmerman, was a founding director, and came on fulltime in 2002 to lead the company through commercialization of their products. Through her experience in the industry, her position as Executive Secretary of NERACOOS (Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems), her past position as President of the Marine and Oceanographic Technology Network [MOTN], and involvement in other marine organizations, she is in tune to the needs of the marine industry.

sector users served by over 50 sales and service partners around the world. With export growth from 50% to 85% over the past several years, the company is recognized as a global leader in real-time 3D sonar systems.

of sonar technology to provide vessel operators with a practical addition to navigation safety, all in an environmentally friendly system. FarSounder products are on some of the most adventurous expedition cruise ships in the world, from vessels which are traveling the Northwest Passage as well as down to the Antarctic to some of the largest yachts in the world and on Offshore Supply Vessels, survey vessels and other commercial ships.

use system provides underwater threat detection while at anchor and navigation sonar while underway. The system is based on FarSounder’s patented sonar technology which produces a complete 3D image with a single ping. System capabilities include 360º detection of divers and other threats with automatic detection, tracking, classification and alarm algorithms. The technology has been optimized for challenging and shallow environments. The display offers electronic overlays and can differentiate between divers, marine mammals and other benign objects, with minimal false alarms.

Without the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and other previous government support FarSounder would not have been able to expedite their research and development, which has created sustained company growth since 2004. This support has also enabled FarSounder to expand its product line with its Ship Protection System following years of IR&D and US government funded research. FarSounder has proven that federal programs and strong government support for small businesses can create the innovation and successful commercialization of products.

FarSounder has proven that federal programs and strong government support for small businesses can create the innovation and successful Delivering the three critical The FarSounder Ship Protection readings required for obstacle System is a unique multi-sensor commercialization of avoidance: range, bearing, and depth, solution with 360º coverage using FarSounder challenges the boundaries fixed in-hull sensors. This multiproducts

Because of their unique patented technology, the company has a global customer base of commercial, government and private

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3D Sonar Systems | FARSOUNDER

From advanced long range 3D Forward Looking Sonar’s to underwater Diver Detection, FarSounder provides a whole new vision underwater. This technology is suitable for both surface and sub-surface vessels and along waterside perimeters. Looking to the future, FarSounder plans to spin their commercial technology back into government acquisition programs where they believe their systems can provide tremendous value. One innovative strategy is to adapt their navigation & obstacle avoidance systems to the Navy fleet which could help protect the US navy fleet and personnel by preventing groundings and collisions, and enabling such vessels as the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) and the Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV) to safely travel to their missions. These systems could also be used for post-disaster, Tsunami and Hurricane mobilization. Another future plan could be to adapt existing FarSounder security systems to help the Coast Guard track the submerged underwater mini-submarines which are a growing threat to the US and which transport both drugs and armaments up the pacific coast into US waters.

that FarSounder and other local companies need, both now and in the future,” Ms. Zimmerman continued, “This is one important area which can have a dramatic, positive effect on helping the state recover and prosper. It will allow innovative companies to continue to employee the staff they need locally and grow successfully, all while staying in our beautiful Ocean State.” FarSounder is proof that federal and local government support is necessary and available to small businesses. Through years of research, hard work and dedication, FarSounder has built a global company right here in the Ocean State and continues to be an industry leader by creating innovative technology.

On a more local level, FarSounder has utilized many of the resources available to small business owners. Working with organizations such as the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), the Small Business Administration (SBA), Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) and Bryant University’s Chafee Center for International Business, FarSounder has been able to start, build and grow their company in Rhode Island. A large percentage of FarSounder’s workforce started as interns at University of Rhode Island and other local universities and have now become important members of the full-time team. “Our best resource is our dedicated, innovative staff”, states Cheryl M. Zimmerman, Chief Executive Officer, “Helping students through increased support of Rhode Island’s public educational system is key to providing the technical and business workforce

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SMALL BUSINESS | Rebuilding our Economy

by Congressman Jim Langevin

In determining the policies that give our small businesses the best opportunity to prosper and grow America’s 21st century economy, we must recognize the importance of having a 21st century infrastructure to support them. Once regarded as the best in the world, including an advanced interstate highway system and state-ofthe-art airports that allowed goods and people to travel as efficiently as possible, these entities are now in desperate need of repairs and upgrades. Recently, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) released a U.S. Infrastructure report card that graded our overall performance on key projects as a “D.” We cannot expect our businesses to reach their full potential when the network to transport their commerce – our roads, bridges, airports and railways – lags behind our international competitors. In Rhode Island, nearly 68 percent of our roads are rated in poor or mediocre condition and one in five bridges are structurally deficient – the fourth highest of any state. And those aren’t the only areas in which we have significant shortcomings. According to ASCE, the conditions of our power grid “can lead to system wide failures in the event of unplanned outages.” Experts also estimate that an average of 700 water main breaks occur across the country

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every day, in large part due to an aging system of pipes. While power or water disruptions cause problems for everyone, our small businesses are particularly affected by lost productivity and income. To have a sustained recovery, we must get our country’s fiscal house in order while making strategic investments in career and technical education, workforce training and small business innovation programs that will help create sustainable jobs. However, we must also invest in our aging infrastructure if we are serious about reviving our economy. Failure to maintain our roads, bridges, and railways will simultaneously hold back growth, create fewer jobs for construction workers, and cost more money over the long term. Delaying renovations and construction results in an even greater fiscal burden down the road, when those repairs eventually do happen, whether it’s next year or after the infrastructure finally fails.

was an important step forward, providing Rhode Island with hundreds of millions of dollars of funding and thousands of anticipated jobs. As a result, more than 30 local projects that were nearly cut will move forward, including improvements to the I-95 bridge over Route 2 and the I-295 ramps along on the Cranston/Johnston border. Separately, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation received a $10 million grant for repairs of the I-95 Viaduct in Downtown Providence.

we must get our country’s fiscal house in order while making strategic investments

That is why I fought to overcome objections by House Republicans to fund a long-term extension of highway and bridge projects. The recently-passed legislation to support this construction over the next two years

Now that this bill has become law, we can move forward with some assurance that our roads and bridges will receive the attention they deserve. However, we cannot afford to be complacent. We must ensure that upgrading all segments of our infrastructure remains a part of our national dialogue, including the addition of high speed rail. Our competitiveness in a global economy requires a sustained commitment to these systems, which will create the conditions for our small businesses and middle class to thrive.


Working With Students | RISBDC

Working With Students

…Who Me?

Ever wondered how to infuse new life into your business? Or maybe it’s time for a complete makeover. Imagine being able to do all of the above (and more), without having to hit your already strained budget.

Sounds too good to be true? Here’s how…. The Rhode Island Small Business Development Center (RISBDC) located at Johnson & Wales University (JWU) is one of a handful of SBDC’s in the nation that employs a student engagement model providing experiential learning and professional development opportunities for students along with no-cost resources for small businesses. The RISBDC infuses real-work experience with classroom instruction. Through the RISBDC Business Resource Center (BRC), student employees work one-on-one with clients and regional directors to create specific, limited-scope deliverables. Projects range from graphic design and web site development to market research and SWOT analyses. Entire classes work with clients on assignments led by JWU faculty members, enabling students to earn credit for their work. Other student engagement opportunities include projects where students produce results in the form of brand marketing, social media plans, research reports or other type of deliverable.

Ropic to discuss getting her business online. Adam designed a business card for Jean and began the layout for her site. The result is www.decadentdesignsbyjean.com.

“Adam did a wonderful job working with me to develop my web site and helping me with new technology. Thanks to all the phenomenal people at the RISBDC,” said Jean. Like Jean, you can take advantage of these incredible resources. Clients benefit from engaging students in a variety of limited scope projects with a referral from one of our regional directors. An initial assessment of client needs may result in a connection to students and faculty where the business’ needs fit curriculum outcomes such as: • Informational Web Site Development • Graphic Design • Market Research • Social Media • Financial Analysis Not only do our clients walk away with great deliverables, but our students gain real-world experience. You have allowed future entrepreneurs a glimpse into the world of entrepreneurship and helped them create a more substantive and competitive portfolio. Plus, you’ve shared your successes and challenges with students who will soon enter the workforce. For more information about RISBDC programs and services, visit our Web site at www.risbdc.org or contact the lead center at (401) 598-2702.

Jean Phillips can attest to the value of student engagement. After losing her job, Jean wondered if she had what it took to start her own business. She had earned a Baking & Pastry Arts degree from JWU some years ago. After many discussions and a lot of homework, Jean decided to take the plunge and start her own bakery. In December 2011, Decadent Designs opened. Shortly after, Jean heard about the resources provided by the RISBDC. She spoke with Regional Director Doug Jobling about her new venture and requested help creating a web site. Jean visited the RISBDC and met JWU technology student Adam www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | Education and Economics

Education

Economics:

A Connection Worth More Than a Cursory Glance Gordon D Fox

Speaker, Rhode Island House of Representatives As discussions about how to decimate our high unemployment rate have evolved, many of the same words have found their way into those important conversations:

infrastructure and health care can steer economic development in one direction or another with the same force that business regulation and tax programs can.

Taxes. Reform. Opportunity.

A cutting-edge public education system, for example, is key to attracting businesses for so many reasons. It is one of our greatest investments as citizens of this state, and one that yields the best return: a knowledgeable and resourceful workforce. We don’t want Rhode Island’s employers to have to look beyond our state borders to find the skilled workers they are looking for. We want our students and the people that have committed their lives to this state to infiltrate every opportunity that the business community can offer and will offer as our economy slowly recovers.

Legislators can put money and resources behind some of these buzz words, especially taxes and reform. But it is the state’s ability to create opportunities that becomes a tricky feat. It is with this realization that I have made it my priority as leader of the General Assembly to create opportunity outside the scope of business-related legislation. Anyone who owns a small business in this state knows that outside forces in the form of things like

What we also need to consider is that a solid education system is a big selling point for businesses outside of Rhode Island looking to relocate. Owners and employees with families will consider the strength of the area’s educational system before deciding to build lives here. It’s a draw that is sometimes overlooked when we think about what helps attract economic ventures to this state. In my first year as speaker of the House, we accomplished one of my top priorities: establishing a fair funding formula for our school districts. For the first time, Rhode Island had a precise system for doling out education monies to our 39 districts. This was important step because it allowed the state to start from scratch and move in a welldefined direction in education.

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Since then, we have fully funded our districts through this formula. Actually, we’ve done better than that. This year, the General Assembly approved $33 million in additional aid and accelerated that aid to the schools in need of it most. And education doesn’t just mean college preparedness – it means providing alternative pathways, developing trade skills and putting students toe-to-toe with real world experience. In a way, the land of business opportunity begins at a very tiny desk. It starts in the minds of preschoolers and

OWNERS & EMPLOYEES WITH FAMILIES WILL CONSIDER THE STRENGTH OF THE AREA’S EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM BEFORE DECIDING TO BUILD LIVES HERE kindergarteners, and continues into their years in elementary school, secondary school and post-graduate institutions. In the past, I have reminded Rhode Islanders that the American Dream is not dead. My hope is that business owners will more fully understand how education contributes to the livelihood of our economic climate, and maybe then we can all get a little bit closer to those dreams we have put on the backburner.


Land at Quonset Becoming a Premium | SMALL BUSINESS

Available Land at Quonset Becoming a Premium by Steven J. King, PE

The numbers tell a compelling story. Quonset Business Park is home to 8,800 jobs with 168 companies doing business in a wide range of industries. More than 2,500 jobs were created since 2005. In 2011, the Port of Davisville was the seventh largest automobile importer in North America. These are numbers that reinforce Quonset’s reputation as a key engine driving the state’s economic development and job growth. But there are also numbers that tell another story. The very existence of more companies and more jobs ultimately translates into a decreasing number of opportunities to locate here. There are good parcels still available, but as Quonset Business Park continues to succeed, the number of acres available for new companies is shrinking. To date, there are 35 prepared sites available to developers. And while that number suggests opportunities for new businesses to discover the beauty and amenities of Quonset, it is in sharp contrast to the widely held notion that the land available at this former Navy base is limitless. In fact, of the 3,207 acres that comprise Quonset Business Park, just 1,401 are considered developable. The rest is either open space (689 acres) or owned or operated by other entities,

like the Town of North Kingstown or the R.I. Airport Corporation. Of the acres available for development, 513 have been sold and 422 have been leased. What remains is 463 acres. And of those acres, 109 are currently reserved or in negotiation. 47 are held under option by Deepwater Wind, while others are held by existing tenants such as Electric Boat. That leaves only 354 acres free for development for new companies looking to establish themselves at the Park. The largest available parcel in the Park stands just over 56 acres. The spacious opportunity was created when the Quonset Development Corporation (QDC) combined two previously undevelopable parcels in the West Davisville area of the park by purchasing a stretch of land that had separated the two. The majority of the other available parcels is between five and 10 acres and are located throughout the park. Commerce Park, North Davisville, the Gateway, and the waterfront area all feature prime sites ready for immediate development.

While the opportunities are shrinking, businesses considering Quonset will find that doing business here has never been easier. Over the past few years several infrastructure improvements have enhanced the park, with many projects having either been completed or scheduled to be completed in 2012. Those projects include the Rhode Island Fast Ferry Dock, the Compass Circle Extension, and a series of federal TIGER Projects at the Port of Davisville’s Pier 1 and Pier 2. More than anything, the QDC, in conjunction with state and town officials, has worked diligently over the past year to make the Quonset Business Park a truly business friendly environment. The Site-Readiness Program instituted last year, for example, came directly on the heels of the creation of a “Quonset Zone,” a single zoning district assigned to the park as part of an agreement for uniform development regulations. Developers,

the number of acres available for new companies is shrinking accustomed to encountering red tape and endless regulatory hurdles at every turn, are finding Quonset to be a very businessfriendly place to do business. The unified process means that all development and re-development projects in the park can proceed at a faster pace than ever before. Make no mistake; Quonset Business Park is a wonderful place for a business to call home. But the neighborhood is filling up. The available sites are becoming scarce. And the time to act is now.

Steven J. King, PE Managing Director Quonset Development Corp

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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THE SCORE | Recipe for Small Business Success

of the month Know the difference between “FEATURES” and “BENEFITS”

MOVING BUSINESSES The “Go To” Mover of Choice.... in the Southern New England Area.

“Features” are usually what the provider has put into a product or service to make it good (or better). The “benefit” is what the user perceives to be appealing. Strong aluminum tubing might be a feature put into patio furniture. The benefit is lightweight, long lasting, smart appearance. Expensive, “hard” wax, might be a feature for a floor cleaning service. The benefit would be a shiny, long lasting beautiful floor. Many providers are in love with the features they use to make things better, and can get carried away promoting these things. Often the customer does not care about the features. They only want the benefit without caring why. Analyze your product or service to determine the features. Analyze your customer to determine his/her perceived benefit. The BENEFIT gets the attention of a prospective customer! Market the BENEFITS in your ads, literature, sales pitch, etc. Do not dwell on features. Sell the customer on what they really want - the BENEFIT.

Rhode Island SCORE provides FREE, confidential counseling to small businesses in Rhode Island. For more information call 401-528-4561 or email info@riscore.org

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America’s Comeback City | CAPITAL CITY

AMERICA’S COMEBACK CITY Mayor Angel Taveras Since taking office as Mayor 18 months ago, I have committed my efforts to restoring Providence’s strength, to making it America’s Comeback City. Through the many fiscal structural reforms and the shared sacrifice of many – residents, employees, unions, institutions, colleges and universities – we have come a long way, building a solid foundation for the future, and taking our city away from the brink of bankruptcy. We did what many thought was impossible: eliminating a looming $110 million deficit, while continuing to provide crucial public services such as fire, police, education, sanitation and public works, and more. An equally pressing concern has been making Providence a city where business can keep going and growing, where families can thrive and where the quality of life of our neighborhoods is unquestioned. Key to that is fully appreciating where we are today and spending time within our neighborhoods, meeting with community groups, non-profit organizations, residents, small business owners, students and parents. Over the past few weeks, I have been conducting a series of Neighborhood Days, to meet residents, and business and community leaders, and to hear from them what concerns them most and what their suggestions are for doing things better. We carried the message of our low-interest, flexible loan program through the Providence Economic Development Partnership (PEDP,) and with the assistance of my Economic Development Director, James Bennett, we heard first-hand from merchants the many issues they faced in keeping a business solvent today. Joining us for that tour was U.S. Senator Jack Reed, who shared his ideas about possible federal programs for our residents, community groups and merchants. Our second day-long tour was along Smith Street, and in the neighborhoods of Elmhurst and Mount Pleasant. We received a terrific response in our individual meetings with neighbors

and business owners, as we shared with them our work on the Gun Tip Line, a neighborhood-by-neighborhood competition for increased recycling and more technical and financial assistance for our small businesses. We have also had our Mobile Office of Neighborhood Services van along with us, so we can answer questions or problems on-the spot or in the immediate future.

WE HAVE COME A LONG WAY, BUILDING A SOLID FOUNDATION FOR THE FUTURE, AND TAKING OUR CITY AWAY FROM THE BRINK OF BANKRUPTCY Look for us in the weeks ahead, as we continue to visit our neighborhoods. The schedule for the next several months is: August 22 in Federal Hill and West Broadway, where we will be focusing on back-to-school issues; September 19 in Summit and Mount Hope; October 3 in Smith Hill and Valley; October 17 in Wayland Square, College Hill and Fox Point where we’ll promote civic engagement opportunities, November 7 in Charles and Wanskuck, and on November 14 in West End and Reservoir. We know there will be much to see and do in each of these visits and we encourage you to meet us, when we are in your neighborhood. In the meantime, always feel free to call us with your questions. You may reach us at 401.421.2489, and ask for the Office of Neighborhood Services, or for business assistance, please call us at 401.680.8400, or visit us at www.providenceri.com. www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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FEATURED NONPROFIT | WaterFire Providence

WaterFire Providence® is an independent, non-profit arts organization whose mission is to inspire Providence and its visitors by revitalizing the urban experience, fostering community engagement and creatively transforming the city by presenting WaterFire for all to enjoy. WaterFire, the award-winning sculpture by Barnaby Evans installed on the three rivers of downtown Providence, has been praised by Rhode Island residents and international visitors alike as a powerful work of art and a moving symbol of the city’s renaissance. With over eighty sparkling bonfires, the fragrant scent of aromatic wood smoke, the flickering firelight on the arched bridges, the silhouettes of the firetenders passing by the flames, the torch-lit vessels traveling down the river, and the enchanting music from around the world, WaterFire engages all the senses and emotions of those who experience it. In 1994, artist Barnaby Evans created First Fire as a commission to celebrate the tenth anniversary of First Night Providence. Two years later, Evans created Second Fire for the International Sculpture Conference where it became the gathering place for thousands of international participants. Following the success of these first two

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Cited by the Providence Journal in 1997 as “the most popular work of art created in the capital city’s 371-year history” and by architect Friedrich St. Florian as the “crown jewel of the Providence renaissance,” WaterFire continues to grow and gain in popularity. Since 1994, WaterFire has captured the imagination of over fifteen million visitors, bringing life to downtown, and revitalizing Rhode Island’s capital city. The power of WaterFire Providence to attract millions of visitors is eloquent testimony to the importance of public art and its capacity to restore our urban and social landscape. Additionally, WaterFire is a proven economic engine for the community creating $70 million of economic impact for Providence businesses, generating $5 million of tax revenue for the State of Rhode Island and supporting over 500 jobs for local residents each year. WaterFire also attracts extraordinary positive national and international media which helps secure Providence’s position as a popular international cultural tourism destination.

In 2012, in recognition of its accomplishments in using art to bring vibrancy to Providence, ArtPlace, a consortium of major national foundations in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and other federal agencies, awarded WaterFire Providence a grant to launch a public art incubator to experiment with new forms of art, develop a creative placemaking learning lab to collect and share latest and best practices and further highlight how art can make significant economic and social contributions to a city. WaterFire is an independent non-profit arts organization that needs your support to present an admission-free community arts event that adds vibrancy and economic impact to Providence and Rhode Island. For information on how you and your business can partner with WaterFire please call 401-272-1155.

PHOTO LEFT: SKYLINE DURING WATERFIRE BY JAMES TURNER. PHOTO TOP: EVENT SPECTACLE BY DAVID AMADIO.

independent art installations, supporters convinced Evans to create an on-going art project and started a grass-roots effort to establish WaterFire Providence as a non-profit organization. With the support of hundreds of dedicated volunteers, a hardworking professional staff, generous donations from visitors, contributions from corporate leaders, and support from the City and State, WaterFire’s bright flames now regularly return to illuminate downtown Providence.


SAVE THE DATE Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

SIXTH ANNUAL RUTH’S CHRIS FUNDRAISER BENEFITING WATERFIRE PROVIDENCE Join WaterFire in helping to make our Capital City and State a great place to live, work and visit! 100% of the proceeds benefit WaterFire Providence. Come celebrate with us! Visit us at: waterfire.org facebook.com/waterfireprovidence @waterfireprov www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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GoLocalProv.com is the “go to” local Web experience that breaks the biggest local stories, sports, high school sports, weather, news, politics, arts, entertainment — and allows users to go as deep as they wish. Branded, credible, and respected contributors from RI create the stories and content. Information is delivered through multimedia, written, and video platforms. All at GoLocalProv.com.

JetBlue

Coming to Rhode Island As GoLocalProv reported last September, Rhode Island officials led by Governor Lincoln Chafee and Providence Economic Development Director Jim Bennett have been courting JetBlue CEO David Barger to bring his high quality, low cost airline to TF Green airport. GoLocalProv has learned that Rhode Island will be the next airport of choice for JetBlue. Back in January, Bennett and Chafee presented Bargar, a Michigan grad, with an autographed football from Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady as part of their ongoing effort to woo the airline to Rhode Island. Success Story JetBlue launched back in 2000. Today, JetBlue stands out as one of the best successes in the post-deregulation airline industry, “We are the only major U.S. airline which began operations postderegulation to survive into a second decade of operation on our own. Our continued success is dependent upon our ability to adapt to an everchanging environment and we believe we are well positioned to do just that,” states JetBlue in its annual report. Impact on Rhode Island Next week’s announcement will be a much-needed shot in the arm for the Rhode Island economy and will create hundreds of new jobs for a state that ranks second worst in the country for unemployment. The arrival of JetBlue brings momentum to TF Green, which was once one of the fastest growing airports in the country but has fallen on tough times in the past few years. In addition, the announcement marks a big economic development win for Governor Chafee who has spent much of his first 18 months in office dealing with budget issues, failing municipalities and the collapse of 38 Studios.

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Providence | GOLOCAL

State To Launch Energy Resources Web Site Governor Lincoln D. Chafee today announced the launch of RIEnergy.org, a website providing energy information and resources for RI residents, businesses, and municipalities. The goal of RIEnergy.org is to provide a comprehensive, publicly accessible collection of RI-specific energy datasets. “The groundbreaking launch of RIEnergy.org is a great accomplishment for our state, one that I am proud my Administration supported and made possible,” Governor Chafee said. “This website will provide useful tools and educational information for residents, businesses, and municipal officials interested in exploring hydropower, solar, and wind energy opportunities. The site will also provide background information about different state and federal polices and programs for renewable energy and energy efficiency, and offer the chance to reveal statistics about our fossil fuel energy consumption and usage.”

associated generation facilities/infrastructure, emissions, and other relevant information. The website offers visitors a Map Gallery and database of all the energy data collected. Downloadable files found in the Data Center correspond to the information visually represented in each Map Viewer and graphically represented in each Chart Viewer on RIEnergy.org. Users new to energy issues might navigate to the “Energy 101” page to learn more about RI’s energy landscape or access educational resources on energy issues. Other users might visit the “Programs & Policies” page looking for incentives to implement energy solutions in their home or business. Some users might browse the portal of energy-related publications under the “Papers” page to find a resource to further explore a subject of interest. Others can visit the “Who’s Who” page to discover which agencies, organizations, and partnerships are involved in energy issues in the state.

Leadership from URI “The University of Rhode Island Outreach and Energy Center staff and the University’s Environmental Data Center have done a tremendous job with the creation of RIEnergy.org, in collaboration with my office, the Office of Energy Resources, the Department of Environmental Management, and the Division of Planning,” Chafee said. “I commend all involved for their continued work to make Rhode Island a leader in renewable energy and energy efficiency.” RIEnergy.org exists thanks to The Renewable Energy Siting Partnership (RESP), a collaboration with URI’s Coastal Resources Center as well as the Outreach and Energy Center. RESP evaluated potential opportunities and impacts of land-based renewable energy development in RI and developed the website to provide energy data, resource mapping and siting tools. By providing RI decision-makers and communities with easy access to a centralized source of energy information, RIEnergy.org hopes to pave the way for the Ocean State to capture a smarter and brighter energy future. The resources on RIEnergy.org are geared toward members of the general public, academics or student researchers, and local or state officials. Deep and broad resources RESP gathered information on various fuels and energy sources used in RI and their historical prices, consumption, generation,

From Rhode Islanders and for Rhode Islanders: See it. Read it. Share it.

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS | Positive Business

by Patricia Raskin

EFFECTIVE PHONE SELLING When you “sell” your ideas over the phone, you are using about 45% of your communication skills; 38% represents tone, which includes pitch, speed, volume, pauses and emphasis on various words. The actual words you use represent 7%. Because nonverbal communication is 55%, the gestures, facial expressions, posture and body positions give you over half of the signals that you can’t see when you use the phone. As we spend increasingly more time over the phone with vendors, associates and customers, here are some suggestions.

Understand your customers. Know what your customers need by carefully listening to them. Then you can select your points based on how the customer will benefit from your product or service.

Have the answers to the tough questions. When you first learn about your product or service, it’s important for you to ask all the tough questions that your customers will ask. The more prepared you are, the easier it is to explain your point of view, especially over the phone when time is often limited.

Listen carefully to pitch, speed, volume, pauses and emphasis on various words. Some clues to your customer’s interest are not responding to what you are saying, speaking in a flat tone, pausing frequently, or not responding at all. You can hear the interest in your customer’s voice, their tone, and the words they use.

• Know your material from different points of view. What you sell to one person may be different from what to sell to another. Study your products by reading and talking to sales representatives so that you know a variety of reasons for product usage.

Believe in your ideas. I know that this seems too obvious to mention. However, if you are tired, frustrated or upset, you may not be as effective in getting across your points. You can check in with yourself before you pick up the phone. If your customer calls you and it isn’t the right time, it’s better to call them back when you can have a positive impact.

Patricia Raskin | Raskin Resources Productions | www.patriciaraskin.com President of Raskin Resources Productions, Inc., is a radio talk show host, award-winning producer, media coach and speaker. She is the host of “Positive Business” on AM790 on Fridays from 3-5PM and “Patricia Raskin Positive Living” on WPRO -630AM & 99.7FM on Saturdays from 3-5PM.

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Work Naked If You Have To | WOMEN IN BUSINESS

WORK NAKED if you have to... by Aileen McDonough

a few rules to break for work-at-home productivity

Going from corporate environment to working for yourself at home can be a big adjustment. When you’ve been following the strict routines of a corporation for a while, working at home can feel a little weird at first—like you’re breaking the rules. But that’s OK, you’re supposed to break a few rules and make up your own as you go along. Here are a few to get you started… DON’T GET DRESSED. I know this advice flies in the face of everything you’ve heard. According to popular wisdom, you’re supposed to treat your home business like a job and get all dressed in your suit or your “business casual” because it proves to yourself and the world that you’re working. And I don’t deny the motivating influence of a shower and a dry-clean-only outfit. But I have accepted that in the work-at-home life, every day is different. When my workday consists of client meetings and networking, I dress professionally and I believe in presenting the best possible image for my business. But other days, schedules go awry and I go from bed to breakfast to parenting to work and back again about a million times, and if I am not required to leave my house, then yes, I probably do it all in my PJs. Because producing the best possible work for clients is my top priority, and it takes maximum focus and efficiency. I am not taking any of that precious time away from important projects if I only need to look good for my computer screen.

DON’T TAKE A LUNCH BREAK. You make your schedule now, and you need to learn to take the breaks that feel right to you. Base your routine on how you work best—a few 10-20 minute breaks per day, an hour at lunchtime, whatever! You get to decide. But the key is to decide. Sometimes I’ll find myself needing a break and my own corporate training will assert itself, “No, it’s not lunchtime yet, stay at your desk and work.” So I try to work, daydream, click the mouse a few times and...What? What? Where did that half

schedules go awry and I go from bed to breakfast to parenting to work and back again about a million times hour go? It went to Facebook—my brain hijacked me into a forced break. But it didn’t feel like a break, and now I’ve lost that time and I’m more tapped out than ever. Take a break when you need it, and that time away will refresh you for more productivity when you get back to work.

STOP NETWORKING ALL THE FRICKIN’ TIME. Doesn’t it feel great to network? Meet new people? Talk about all the possibilities? Yes, it does! But there is such a thing as too much networking. Think of it like dating for your business. When you’re networking, it’s like a giant singles bar (and it is, for some, but that is another whole article). But if you’re already managing a full roster of clients, networking is like leaving your spouse home alone every night to hit the bars. The spouse gets lonely and eventually strays...do you see where this is going? Networking is a means to an end; it’s part of your work, it doesn’t replace working. You’re not doing this to collect business cards like baseball cards in a big plastic binder. Be selective and targeted about your networking, and find events that are fun, stimulating, and appropriate to your business so you can continue building your clientele and resources. Then go back to your home office and work! BREAK YOUR OWN RULES. In a recent Harvard Gazette article about writing routines, author Tayari Jones said, “I’ve worked hard to train myself not to have any requirements for writing, only preferences. I want to know that I can do it anywhere and anytime...” This is true of our businesses, too. When you work at home, you have an opportunity to develop your business routines based on your preferences: being a morning person, preferring to work in PJs, etc. But don’t let your own rules make it impossible for you to work any other way. Be flexible, be open to change, learn from your mistakes, and go with the flow. Work naked if you have to, just get the work done and done well. After all, when you work at home, you have to break the rules sometimes —even your own.

Aileen McDonough | 3am Writers | www.3amwriters.com

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS | Create Killer Social Media Content

quick, by Laura Dunn

We all know by now that engaging in social media is a must in order to effectively market your business today. But for busy small business owners and time-crunched marketing staff alike, finding the time and inspiration to generate original and engaging content on a regular basis can seem like an insurmountable task. The return, however, makes it more than worth it. Here are five ways to generate great content that both showcases your business and won’t leave you time-sucked or suffering from writer’s block. Hatch a Plan I know what you’re thinking: “This was supposed to be quick and easy!” But sitting down to draft a well thoughtout social media strategy and editorial calendar is an upfront investment in time and effort that’ll pay for itself many times over. More often than not, practicing “fly by the seat of your pants” posting merely serves to announce news or state a promotion without inspiring any real engagement. By strategically tailoring content to complement not only what’s happening in your business but also what’s happening with your followers, you can better reinforce your branding and big picture marketing messages while also establishing your business as a useful resource. Providing value to your followers is the best way to make them see value in you. You’ll be surprised how many ideas quickly spring from just this one exercise. And the more you can pencil in on that editorial calendar now, the less you’ll be scrambling to cobble together content later. It’s a step that can’t be ignored if your social media marketing is to succeed. Don’t Be a Stranger at the Water Cooler If you’re going to take part in social media, it’s a good idea to be, well – social. Take part in casual conversation with your coworkers and clients. As you’re chatting it up about last night’s TV shows, breaking news or the latest hot topic, it’s a good bet that somewhere along the way someone will draw a comparison or parallel to your own

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Create Killer Social Media Content | WOMEN IN BUSINESS

easy ways to create

Killer Social Media Content business that’s insightful, interesting, or even just funny. Use that as a catalyst for crafting content that’s both relevant to your business and timely for your followers.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Reduce Your Workload by Reusing and Recycling Content This may seem obvious, but I’m always surprised at how easily it’s forgotten. If you’ve already put together content for a print publication – a newsletter, member magazine, even an annual report that includes feature content – deconstruct it into smaller bits of social-media-friendly information and blog posts that can be shared a little bit at a time. In this way you can leverage just one article into fodder for multiple posts, providing ready-made content and extending the reach of that content well past the original intended recipients. Shoot to Thrill Photos and video are among the most effective and shared content on social media. Keep a camera handy at all times and be ready to shoot when a good opportunity arises. Give a peek behind-the-scenes, capture the scene at an event, snap a photo of a fabulous final product or a service in action. Then tell the story behind it in a few sentences, caption style, and let the photo stand in as the thousand words you’ve always heard it’s worth (and it is).

Tap Into Internal Communications This is one of the most useful and easiest ways to source killer content. I used to work at a zoo (no, really) that hosts a day camp during school vacations. The camp needed an extra push, but we weren’t making much headway just posting descriptions of the various camp programs with a link to the page. Then the camp director shared an e-mail from a particularly pleased parent who was raving about their child’s experience. The testimonial was great. But we really struck gold when we scrolled down to the original message from the camp director, sent to all the campers’ parents, detailing what their children had done that week – the topics they’d learned about, the activities they’d participated in, funny things that happened along the way and highlights of some of the kids’ moments of discovery.

It communicated the camp experience in an engaging, first-person point of view, rather than through what felt like canned marketing language in comparison. And it turned out this type of e-mail went out to parents every week. We asked the camp director to include us on all future such messages and turned them into blog posts that we then shared through our Facebook page. And, voila – engagement, interest and new camper registrations followed, as parents became convinced of the real value of the experience.

deconstruct [content] into smaller bits of socialmedia-friendly information and blog posts that can be shared a little bit at a time The takeaway here is to reach out to the various departments or staff in your organization and specifically ask to be included in communications like that one. You may see marketing value in things that others working from a different perspective may not. In the same way, asking staff in other departments to contribute blog posts can often be like pulling teeth. They’re busy working within their own sphere, and writing about what they’re doing purely for the purposes of a blog may feel uncomfortable and challenging for them. But by tapping in to those types of internal communications you can capitalize on an organic flow of information that’s already written in a natural, conversational tone and turn them into killer content without creating extra work for anyone. Can’t get quicker or easier than that, right?

Laura Dunn Quill and Cursor

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS | All About the Ladies

The Latest “Old Boys Club” is All About the Ladies

by Laura Dunn

How the PVD Lady Project is Helping Awesome Women Do Amazing Things in Providence here’s the scene:

and here’s the surprise: They are all women, many of them in their twenties and thirties.

Not what you pictured? The founders of the PVD Lady Project, the organizing force behind the real-life scene just described, are out to change that. Twenty-four year-old Julie Sygiel and 25 year-old Sierra Barter met just last October at (perhaps appropriately) a ladies-only spa party sponsored by Sygiel’s company. Sygiel, a former Girl Scout who once sold 10,000 Girl Scout cookies, is the 24 year-old founder and CEO of the up-andcoming Rhode Island based startup Underbrella (formerly Sexy Period). The company produces an innovative line of women’s underwear designed to be both fashionable and leak-resistant. Barter is a 25 year-old employed-preneur who’s a social media coordinator by day and owner of an organizing and event design company, Clementine Lime, by night.

“you are my people!” The pair hit it off right away, finding common ground in both their strong entrepreneurial spirit and the struggles they faced in putting their dreams into action at such a young age. “We were both women, the same age, trying something new and running into the same challenges and fears,” says Barter, relating how on that very day Sygiel took her by the shoulders and said “YOU are my people!”

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Recognizing the huge value and potential of the unique camaraderie they had found, Sygiel and Barter immediately set about brainstorming how they could widen their circle of young women entrepreneurs and go-getters. “We said, ‘How can we find more of us… Other young, ambitious women who can inspire each other, collaborate and network with each other’,” says Sygiel. The pair met up for breakfast one weekend shortly thereafter and, over a plate of waffles, the PVD Lady Project was born.

“need something done? I know a girl.” The mission of the PVD Lady Project is to “connect, inspire and showcase awesome women doing amazing things in Providence.” Sygiel and Barter say their goal is to create a non-intimidating atmosphere for women to come together and support each other both professionally and emotionally. “The idea is for it to be a network of professionals, but also of friends,” says Barter. “We want women to meet other women that

PHOTO LEFT: PVD LADY PROJECT FOUNDERS SIERRA BARTER (LEFT) AND JULIE SYGIEL (RIGHT). PHOTO TOP RIGHT: A PVD LADY PROJECT EVENT. PHOTO CREDIT: JEN OF I AM THE EVERYDAY GIRL (DOT COM)

It’s a packed house in one of Providence’s posh restaurants. The clink of cocktail glasses can be heard over the din as entrepreneurs share business cards and handshakes. The founder of one of Rhode Island’s hottest new start-ups chats with a nationally sought-after blogger, while a candidate for state rep talks politics with the owner of one of the city’s “best of” businesses.


All About the Ladies | WOMEN IN BUSINESS

might not have otherwise crossed paths with, find their shared common ground and help each other out. And when someone is looking to hire for a particular project or job, we want our members to look to each other first, and say ‘You need something done? I know a girl.’” So far, the plan is working. The PVD Lady Project’s first networking event was held in February at The Dorrance, followed by another in April and a third in June. There was very healthy attendance at each, with Sygiel and Barter estimating that the group now consists of about 75 members who are participating regularly. They say many new friendships and even partnerships have been formed.

networking, inspiring “3x3” & giving back Each of the Project’s networking events features the group’s signature “3 x3,” (read “three by three”) where three successful or up-and-coming women each have three minutes to address the group and share their experiences and advice. The rest of the event is dedicated solely to networking and having fun together, or as the PVD Lady Project website puts it, “to network, connect with other like-minded ladies and to do so over a glass of champagne.” The last event, held at Local 121 in June, featured a 3x3 with Nielson “Power Mom” blogger Audrey McClelland of momgenerations.com; Alayne White, owner of Providence and Bristol’s Alayne White Spas, a Best of Rhode Island business; and Libby Kimzey, a young woman who’s been very active in local nonprofit community action organizations and is now running for state representative in District 8. In keeping with the spirit of women supporting women, each of the events also incorporates an optional fundraising component, where attendees can opt to make a small donation to a designated woman-run or woman-benefitting organization. Beneficiaries so far have included Girl Scouts of Rhode Island, Sojourner House and the YWCA.

the real value of the Lady Project The PVD Lady Project’s next networking event is scheduled for September 6 and will benefit Girls Rock Rhode Island. The location is yet to be determined, but it’s already confirmed that this event will have an extra twist – “BYOM,” or “Bring Your Own Mentor / Mentee.” Sygiel and Barter say they hope this will be the first step in building awareness of the group among a greater number and diversity of women and perhaps even the beginning of a built-in mentoring program. Ambitious women who want to meet like-minded ladies over a glass of champagne are encouraged to attend and check out pvdladyproject.com to find out more about the event and the group. Tickets to the various networking events usually have to

be purchased in advance, so watch the website or follow PVD Lady Project on Facebook or Twitter to stay in the loop. Sygiel and Barter say they try to keep the events affordable for everyone. “We want to keep the group accessible for everyone,” says Barter. “So our plan is to always keep the Project very affordable to join and to participate in. The real value of it, and our focus, will always be the connections and support we all provide for each other.”

what’s the long-term vision for the Project? Well, starting now and continuing for many years down the road, Sygiel and Barter say they hope it’ll look something like this…..

here’s the scene: It’s a packed house in one of Providence’s posh restaurants. Young women entrepreneurs exchange business cards and handshakes with established, successful businesswomen who offer up advice and help to forge key connections. Together, they represent some of Rhode Island’s hottest new startups, most influential up-and-comers, highly innovative thinkers and doers, and most successful business owners.

and here’s the thing: It’s not a surprise at all.

PVD Lady Project www.pvdladyproject.com

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and are available on the Chamber’s website, www.NewportChamber.com. More specific in-depth information specifically on Rhode Island will be available in September.

Jody Sullivan, Executive Director 35 Valley Road, Middletown, RI 401 847 1608 | www.NewportChamber.com

The Newport County Chamber of Commerce (NCCC) is committed to promoting the state and local business community and creating a healthy business environment in Newport County and Rhode Island. As the second largest Chamber in the State, with over 1100 member businesses, the NCCC represents over 35,000 employees. Key industries within the Newport County and East Bay business communities include defense, marine trades and hospitality and tourism. Chamber Executive Director Jody Sullivan served on the State of Rhode Island’s America’s Cup Host Committee as well as the Ocean State Tall Ships Board of Directors. As a member of these organizations, the Chamber worked to maximize the economic impact to the state and local business community. Additionally, the Chamber’s non-profit 501(c)(3), the Newport County Development Council (NCDC), is currently administering several state and federal grants on behalf of county municipalities and the defense industry. The NCDC has partnered with the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation to commission a regional defense economic impact study in preparation for future Department of Defense Base Realignment and Closures (BRACs). General regional preliminary findings of this study have been released

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The NCDC recently successfully applied for a Rhode Island Foundation grant to create a strategic plan for the NCDC to become a proactive regional economic development agency. Initial conversations with regional stakeholders were very supportive of this concept. This is an opportunity to formally and cohesively promote our region to potential investors as well as to facilitate the growth and expansion of our existing businesses. The NCCC and the NCDC will continue to identify opportunities and lead efforts to preserve and expand these industries. In addition to the traditional Chamber program of networking, educational opportunities, discounts and promotional opportunities for members, the Chamber also focuses on legislative advocacy. During the 2012 legislative session, the Newport County Chamber of Commerce testified before House and Senate Finance Committees on behalf of the business community. The NCCC also belongs to the Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce Coalition and, together with eleven other Rhode Island Chambers, works to create a less burdensome regulatory and tax environment for Rhode Island businesses. By advocating for pro-business legislation and working to eliminate regulations that are counterproductive to a healthy business environment, the Chamber is working on behalf of all its members with a more powerful voice than any one business standing alone. On behalf of the Chamber Board of Directors and Staff, thank you to all of our 1100 members that have invested in the quality of life and economic wellbeing of our Newport County and Rhode Island Community.


Newport County | FEATURED CHAMBER Below is a listing of upcoming Chamber events. Unless otherwise noted: All events are Free for Members unless noted otherwise and $25 for Non-Members. Newport County Young Professionals Beer Tasting & Networking Event Tuesday, August 14th - 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Newport Storm, 293 JT Connell Rd., Newport. $10 Chamber Members, $15 non-members Business After Hours Thursday, August 23rd - 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. Mount Hope Farm, 250 Metacom Ave, Bristol

State Of The State Economic Luncheon Thursday, August 30th - 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. Keynote Speaker: Janet Coit, Director, RI Department of Environmental Management. Atlantic Beach Club, 5 Purgatory Rd., Middletown. $25 Chamber Members, $35 non-members, Sponsored by People’s Credit Union

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Business Before Hours Thursday, Sept 6th - 8:00 - 9:15 a.m. Artillery Company of Newport, 23 Clarke St., Newport To attend an event, please register online at: www.NewportChamber.com or call 401 847 1600

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New Newport County Chamber Members A. Tesa Architecture A-1 Paving, LLC Acupuncture & Herbal Answers Anna Anton, William Raveis, Chapman Enstone Aqua Boutique Aquidneck Medical Associates AT&T Get Wireless Now Atlantic Grille Blinds & Designs Bourne Green Horticulture Bulfinch Group CD Advisory Services Chrysalis Hospice CJ’s Tire & Auto Service, Inc. Continental Travel Agency Cottrell Bros. LLC. Elaine M. Carvelli, CLCT, Financial Planner Evelyn’s Drive-In Exact Contracting Grace Chiropractic Henry Collins Inn Home Instead Senior Care Infotree Corporation Karen Armstrong, Tutor Karen Elaine LeBlanc, Realtor Karen Santos Dill, ReMax Knit One Purl Too

Leather-N-Lace Boutique Lifestyle Designs Marian A. Royer, D.M.D. Mediapeel New England Wings Newport Harbor Guide Newport Sea Foam Trading Ocean State Software Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt Pear Ink Design Peregrine Property Management Platinum One Portsmouth Veterinary Clinic Priority Payment Systems Northeast Providence Financial Group Publicity Crew Rhodeway Networks, Inc. Sailfly School for Allied Massage & Ayurveda Seabreeze Stays Southwest Texas Publishing, Inc. Sugar High, Inc. Sullivan Tire Sunnyside Deli The Attwater Tiverton Auto Body, Inc. Wild Orchid Wild Rhody Seafood

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CHAMBER CHAT | What’s New 1

Central Chamber

July 19th held an open business forum at Garden City Center with Health Insurance Commissioner, Christopher F. Koller, for approximately 45 businesses to discuss the proposed increases by the individual carriers. Stephen C. Boyle, President said that during the last three years the base rate has increased 9.7 percent for small groups and 8.1 percent for large groups, however, actual increases for some companies reached 26 percent due to the census for the individual company. He indicated that these types of increases are unsustainable. Koller shared his views on a wide range of topics stating that more carriers won’t necessarily drive costs down, that we are going to have to change the way we pay doctors and providers, in addition to changes such as lifestyle from employers and employees. He also indicated that we should pay close attention to the struggle between Blue Cross and Steward Hospital as a possible indicator of things to come. The Chamber has committed to providing more open forums with regard to the overall costs of health care for businesses.

Lauren E.I. Slocum, President/CEO 3288 Post Road, Warwick, RI 401 732 1100 | www.centralrichamber.com

Networking – Support – Advocacy. The Central Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce services businesses from throughout Rhode Island. The core area is Warwick, West Warwick, Coventry and West Greenwich. The Central Rhode Island Chamber provides assistance to companies located within the area or looking to do business within the area. The needs and goals of each company may be different but the end result is the same, achieve the company’s goals and maximize the benefit of membership. The staff encourages all members to work with them to plan a strategy. There are many benefits of membership that are available but that not all businesses may be taking full advantage of. Call today to schedule your appointment so you don’t miss a thing!

Having the Right Network Makes All the Difference Cisco’s Borderless Networks and Atrion SMB connect anyone, anywhere, on any device, at anytime. By linking together users, devices, and applications, you can connect securely and communicate more effectively.

New Members Bellafoto Studios Boston Scientific Claddagh Connection Colonial Life - T. J. Hartford Greenwood Care & Rehab Hibachi Grill & Buffet Inc Johnson & Wales University Luk Thai II Nadeau Corporation New York Life Praxair Distribution Inc Randolph Savings Bank Salve Regina University The UPS Store - Coventry Thundermist Tori Lynn Andreozzi Foundation Turfer Athletic

Contact Atrion SMB today at info@atrionsmb.net or by calling (401) 825-4422 to learn more about how they can provide highly secure yet flexible access to your business needs to stay competitive.

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New Members Lynn Anne Kearns Bookeeping and Accounting Services Frank S. Lombardi Law Associates, PC Sherry Ferdinandi, CPA, LLC Lori A. Carlino, CPA, LLC Hope Alzheimer’s Center

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East Bay Chamber Mark Matrone, Chairman 16 Cutler Street, Suite 102, Warren, RI 401 245 0750 | eastbaychamberri.org

401 785 3780I | www.cranstonchamber.com

Our mission is to promote business as the foundation for community growth and well-being by being the most reliable resource and leading advocate for businesses throughout the East Bay and surrounding areas.

The Cranston Chamber of Commerce on

We welcome new members! Get involved!

Cranston Chamber Stephen C. Boyle, President 150 Midway Road, #178, Cranston, R

Scan or visit http://bit.ly/

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What’s New | CHAMBER CHAT Be part of a dynamic group of leaders, Poliquin Fitness Center make new contacts, gain new lifelong Dr. Christopher Pedorella, DMD friendships and increase your opportunity Staci’s Place Fine Intimates and Lingerie to grow. We have a lot of great things happening here at the East Bay Chamber. www.eastbaychamberri.org 5 Narragansett Chamber www.facebook.com/eastbaychamberri Deborah Kelso, Executive Director 36 Ocean Road, Narragansett, RI

New Members Angelina’s Coffee & Espresso Mount Hope Farm Leo’s Ristorante Revival Main Street Gallery School of Rock

4

East Greenwich Stephen Lombardi, Executive Director 580 Main Street | East Greenwich, RI | 401 885 0020 www.eastgreenwichchamber.com

The East Greenwich Chamber of Commerce continues to work to create opportunities to support and benefit its members and the town of East Greenwich. The month of July has been busy with networking and fun, family friendly events to support town morale and community interacting. On July 17th we had our Business After Hours event at McCoy Stadium as a “Family Night- Networking event at the Paw Sox” The event was a great success thanks to the support of our sponsors, Independence Bank and Coastway Community Bank.

401 783 7121 | www.narragansettcoc.com

The 10th Annual Narragansett Chamber of Commerce Summer’s End Festival, sponsored by BankNewport, will be held at Narragansett Town Beach on Sunday afternoon, September 16th. This celebration of another successful summer season is highlighted by a 2 hour concert from the deck of the North Beach clubhouse by “Brass Attack”. The festival also boasts food from area establishments as well as local food trucks, beer & wine, a merchant marketplace in the sand and offers kite flying demonstrations and lessons on the beach. Banner sponsors are Narragansett Flags & Kites, Westerly Community Credit Union, The SelfStorage Center, Grey Sail Brewing and Sweeney’s Wine & Spirits. There is still time to secure a spot for your business to be involved. Call the office for more information 401-783-7121. The schedule for the afternoon is: Merchants, Food, Beer & Wine and Kites from noon – 5 pm, DJ from noon-2 pm, Brass Attack from 2-4 pm. Festival admission is free, parking is $5 in designated lots.

On July 19th the Chamber hosted the annual Main Street Stroll – The Dog Parade. Merchants, artists and musicians came 6 North Central Chamber out and lined Main Street for the evening. Deborah Ramos, President Community members strolled along Main 255 Greenville Avenue, Johnston, RI Street, to support the community and 401 349 4674 | www.ncrichamber.com shop locally. Entertainment continued when traffic was temporarily stopped to Buy small, buy local! Support small watch the dogs of East Greenwich parade business, support each other! At the down the street. North Central Chamber of Commerce, it’s all about “Businesses supporting New Members Community supporting Businesses”! Promotion with Motion Sequence Genetic + Integral Wellness Our 30th Anniversary celebration

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CHAMBER CHAT | What’s New continues -- making this the year to join North Central Chamber! In honor of this important milestone, we are welcoming new members with valuable promotions, such as -- complimentary and discounted advertising in local newspapers, $30 in Chamber Bucks (good for events), and a special for new businesses opened in 2012, a $30 membership discount. North Central Chamber looks forward to continuing to serve the small business community in the towns of Johnston, North Providence, Smithfield, Scituate, Foster and Glocester for another 30 years. 8

September will bring the debut of our Young Professionals networking group starting with a trivia night at Sonoma Pub on Wednesday, September 12th from 5:00 – 7:30. For more information call the Chamber at 295-5566. New Members Plum Beach Swim and Racquet Club Riggs & Gallagher Inc. ULTRA Scientific

Northern RI John C. Gregory, President/CEO

For some, summertime business slows down….not here at North Central Chamber! We are full steam ahead looking to grow membership, help businesses and plan upcoming events and workshops. We just don’t stop; we don’t stop for small business.

New Members Taso’s The Heart Spot Retail Solutions Mesiti Law Offices OPTX rhode island Brigido’s Fresh Market Totrama Supermarket, Inc.

7

North Kingstown Martha Pughe, Executive Director

Commerce is a powerful business alliance of more than 550 businesses, non-profits and organizations, both large and small. Our Business & Community Guide is one of the pillars of that alliance, a tool that we use to drive business to each other’s company through referrals and a sense of “shop local first”. We encourage our membership to patronize their fellow chamber members, keeping our hard earned dollars local. Our Business & Community Guide is a one stop listing of all the products and services our member’s may need.

6 Blackstone Valley, Suite 301, Lincoln, RI  02865 401 334 1000 | www.nrichamber.com

The Northern RI Chamber is launching a new website coming fall 2012. According to John Gregory, IOM, President and CEO, “Our new website will offer much more value to our communities, businesses and members. Our goal is to provide people with as much relevant information as we can about living, working, conducting business, visiting and relocating to the Northern RI area.” Visit the Chambers new website at www.NRIChamber.com this fall. Please contact the Chamber office at 401-334-1000 extension 106 or email us at membership@NRIChamber.com if you would like more information on membership or advertising with the Chamber.

New Members Capalbo Dental Group of Wakefield Hydro-Clean Power Washing Law Offices of James T. Marasco Pier Realty Rentals South County Pediatric Dentistry Sweet Althea’s

your chamber not listed contact us today so we can add your information and new member list for the next issue

8045 Post Road, North Kingstown, RI 401 295 5566 www.northkingstown.com

New Members Cabinet Gallery Ltd RW Bruno Heating & Cooling, Inc. Applebee’s Smithfield, RI WRIK Entertainment Cote & D’Ambrosio, Inc. IBR

The sewers are coming and a whole lot more. The North Kingstown Chamber is dedicated to advocating for our local businesses, To this end, we hosted a “Talk with the Town” for local businesses effected by the sewers that are going 9 Southern RI in on Route 1. The North Kingstown Elizabeth Berman, Coordinator Manager along with his staff and the 230 Old Tower Hill Road, Wakefield, RI contractor were able to give up-to-date 401 783 2818 | www.srichamber.com information and answer questions for our businesses. The Southern Rhode Island Chamber of

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chamberchat@risbj.com isupportsmallbusiness.com


THE RHODE ISLAND

COMMERCIAL & APPRAISAL BOARD OF REALTORS®

Adopting The New CIE

INFORMATION EXCHANGE SERVICE Press Release, August 13th, 2012 Providence, RI The Rhode Island Commercial and Appraisal Board of REALTORS® has announced the collaboration with Statewide Multiple Listing Service™ to adopt a new Commercial Real Estate Information Exchange Service (CIE) as an enhanced data service to better serve the commercial brokerage industry. The task force behind this effort, was chaired by RICABOR 2008 President Michael Alves. Members of the task force included Jeff Butler, 2012 Treasurer RICABOR & MLS; RICABOR Directors Richard Berlinski, Richard Carruba, and Greg Skoutas; as well as input from Peter Scotti, 2012 RICABOR President and Michele L. Caprio, Executive Director. Jeff Butler was charged with bringing it forward to the MLS and RIAR Board approval process. Butler commented “This will change the way we do business in RI commercial real estate, and is long overdue. MLS does a fantastic job with residential real estate and services to that sector, evidenced by the huge success of www.RILiving.com which is the most trafficked real estate website in RI. Our new CIE’s “public face” will have a prominent position on RILiving , so that commercial buyers, tenants, investors or virtually anyone connected to commercial or investment properties can view the largest database of RI properties with “state of the art” tools . After careful research by MLS Staff and Executive Board it was a clear choice as to who the “best in class” was for our new CIE. The new CIE will be powered by Catylist, the industry’s leading CIE vendor. Special thanks to Mike Letendre, Chief Information Officer of MLS, a valuable behind- thescenes team player who without his decades of knowledge we would still probably be scratching our heads .“ Richard Maxson, Senior Vice President offered this view of his company: “ We are very excited about bringing Catylist to RI, it fits well for SO many reasons. We build technology for commercial real estate professionals that includes tools for searching, marketing, researching, and sharing. Founded in 2001, we’re currently the #1 provider of Commercial Information Exchanges for real estate associations nationwide. Our CIE platform is being used to search and market commercial property in dozens of markets around the country.

We also provide site selection technology for economic development groups, and offer a number of other tools for commercial real estate professionals. According to Butler “Work has begun on the implementation of Catylist and its public-facing website. We plan on launching this fall, and it will be free to use for all MLS Members for the first six months of operation. All existing MLS commercial listings will be initially loaded into the CIE for the six-month introductory period. Catylist will be operated in parallel with MLXchange’s & RILiving’s commercial property types for the foreseeable future, allowing those MLS Members working with commercial properties to choose which platform(s) they wish to use. Significant efforts will also be made to align the CIE with state and local economic development entities, chambers of commerce as well as grow participation by all of the commercial brokerages in our market area”. He added “RICABOR is the unified voice of RI Commercial Realtors and Appraisers, and as such will continue to play a leadership role in the successful launch and implementation of the new RI Commercial and Investment CIE, and other initiatives that improve our profession”. “Our clients are increasingly tech-savvy and want information as widely promoted and accessible as possible. Catylist and the new RI CIE will be the quickest, easiest, and most economical way to get maximum exposure for your clients commercial listings, and THE preeminent source for maximum commercial and investment real estate content! Stay tuned! www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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THE RHODE ISLAND

COMMERCIAL & APPRAISAL BOARD OF REALTORS® P RO P E RT Y F O R L E A S E

Office Condos 900-4,000’:

Providence, Warwick, Johnston, North Kingstown, and Exeter. Several to choose from, sale or lease. Financing. Call for details.

333 Main Street, East Greenwich:

1370 Plainfield Pike, Cranston:

By Walgreens at Atwood and rt 14. AMPLE PARKING in newly paved lot in rear and front. Great visibility Corner lot. Use for Retail, Restaurant, GB to Medical. 4,800 sq ft Stand Alone Building plus full 4,800 sf basement for $3,750 per/mo. RILiving.com MLS #981196

500 Callahan Road, North Kingstown:

776-782 Main Street, East Greenwich:

Best location on Main Street. Bright and open 2nd floor unit with high ceilings. Parking lot across the street. Great office or studio space! 1,250 sq ft, $12. psf/yr. RILiving.com MLS #1018391

Flexible space in Quonset Business Park. Major highway access, minutes from I-95. Rail, Airport, shopping and shipping. 3 phase, 400 amp service,20 ft ceiling, loading docks, overhead doors. Flexible use and floor plans from 3,000 to 40,000 sq ft. from $3.75 psf. RILiving.com MLS #1005917

Excellent visibility in the Greenwich Shopping Center by the Dunkin Donuts on Main. 825 square feet with full glass and rear entrance. Retail, medical or office. Can be combined for 1,650 Sq Ft. MLS #1018795 (Unit 776) & #1014642 (Unit 782) Ample parking in the rear. RILiving.com MLS #1014635

269 Greenville Avenue, Johnston:

39 Nooseneck Hill Road, West Greenwich:

74 Nooseneck Hill Road, West Greenwich:

Bright office/retail/general business space! Unit C: Former tanning salon. $700/month Unit E: Former Law/Financial Planning office. $1400/month. Ample parking. 3 phase electric. RILiving.com MLS #1010162

47 Sandy Bottom Road, Coventry:

Large store (5250’) that can be divided into three; 1000, 1250, or 3000 sf. Very busy plaza on a busy feeder road. Join ReMax, Anytime Fitness, Subway, Liberty Tax, Northeast Karate & others. $12/psf base, depending on size and improvements needed. RILiving.com MLS #1007209

Great Rt.3 location just a mile north of Rt.95 Exit 6. Versatile building. 13,000 sq ft clear span with high ceilings, plus two offices/service areas, 2000 & 4000 sq ft. May divide. Other end of this 40,000 sq ft building is to be shared with Church. From $5,50 psf/yr. RILiving.com MLS #1022330

24 Quaker Lane, Warwick:

1,000 sf street level retail - $900 mo. 1,000 - 3,000’ sf (3 units) 2nd level, bright second floor space from $750 mo. with high ceilings and sky lights. Zoned general business. By Kent County Courthouse & “Miracle Mile” Rt.2/Rt.117. Great highway access & signage. RILiving.com MLS #987502

Butler

Realty Group

Commercial • Investment • Residential

401-886-7800 www.ButlerRealty.us 70

747 Pontiac Avenue, Cranston:

Great location near Rolfe Square. Three floors of office suites from 200 sq. ft. and up. Good income generator or large owner occupied office. Owner keeping several suites clear anticipating a larger use to buy/occupy and have income. 900’s

RISBJ | rhode island small business journal

Great Route 3 location just ½ mile from Rt 95 exit 6, nicely appointed office or retail suite with several offices and open area,was HQ for Bess Eaton & Tim Hortons. Fresh paint and carpets. 600-3600’, from $10 psf/yr. RILiving.com MLS #990071

75 West Industrial Park, Cranston:

1,100 sq ft - Nicest contractor condo around. Centrally located right off I295 by Comstock Industrial Park. 14’ overhead door, man door, office or storage, restroom, sewers, sheetrocked with electric all around. Mop sink . $1,000 mo. HE lighting, gas heat. RILiving.com MLS #1007412

Many more Commercial Properties @ www.ButlerRealty.us .... or email Jeff Butler at jab@ButlerRealty.us Trusted Real Estate Service Since 1977 Looking to Buy or Lease? Call the Butler !


THE RHODE ISLAND

COMMERCIAL & APPRAISAL BOARD OF REALTORS® NG

P RO P E RT Y F O R S A L E G

DIN

DI PEN

PEN

297 Cowesett Avenue, West Warwick:

1st floor all set up for daycare. 2nd floor-up to 4 office suites. Owner is vacating building to enable sale to owner/ occupant. Tenant thru June 2012. $895,000 RILiving.com MLS #1008318

2025 Nooseneck Hill Road, Coventry:

2.2 acres on busy Rt. 3, $900’s. L shaped lot with frontage on Rt. 3 (Nooseneck Hill Road) and Harkney Hill Road. Heavy traffic, & great demographic. Corner and light access. Can be combined with 2011 Nooseneck Hill Road (MLS# 1006843) $300’s RILiving.com MLS # 1006843

118 Greenville Avenue, Johnston:

Free standing building located on a busy main road. Recently rehabbed; new trussed roof and paint, upgraded electric, on grass parking to the right. Full basement. Great for a Pawn Shop, Salon, Office, or ??? $89,900 RILiving.com MLS #1019846

111 Hopkins Hill Road, West Greenwich: ½ acre – 16 acres Very fast growing area off Exit 6A near GTech, Amgen & Centrex. Front pad is busy Dunkin Donuts, balance of site permits office, retail, warehouse & light industrial. Traffic count 15,000 and growing! Multitude of possibilities- 6 other avail. lots. From $150,000 RILiving.com MLS #855989

279 285 Main Street, East Greenwich:

Normandy Rooms and Ron’s Barber Shop (owner), same owner over 28 years. Tenancy surprisingly stable, some over 10 years. Ron will vacate and consider sale of his salon business. GREAT cash flow and location!! NEW gas heat system! $625,000 RILiving.com MLS #984569

17 Sandy Bottom Road, Coventry:

Great location and set up for night club, restaurant or other food/entertainment venue. Very close to turnkey as night club. Lease, lease/option or buy. 326 capacity. $595,000 RILiving.com MLS #1022520

111 Airport Road, Warwick:

Very nice 2nd floor office space. Tastefully decorated, good paint & carpet, possible office furnishings (nice stuff!) Three offices, conference, reception, lav., plus large basement storage. $180/month condo fee. $89,000 RILiving.com MLS #1012762

79 Nooseneck Hill Road, West Greenwich:

Great commercial site!! 1.5 acres, 239’ lot frontage – $300K ! Adjacent 7.28 acres, also 239’ frontage - $500,000 Town water, gas. Zoned highway business, many potential uses!! On heavily trafficked Route 3, right off of Exit 6, Rt. 95. Coventry and West Greenwich are two of RI’s fastest growing areas!

Butler

RILiving.com MLS#’s 971662,971664

Realty Group

Commercial • Investment • Residential

401-886-7800 www.ButlerRealty.us

660 Tiogue Avenue, Coventry:

High profile three street corner location. Just 2 blocks North of Arnold Road- Very busy area!! Sewers recently installed in this section of Rt3. 60,000 sq ft, 3 street frontage REDUCED $700’s RILiving.com MLS #955312

18 Highland Street, West Warwick:

RI’s oldest continually operating hotel. Rare opportunity, great cash flow possibilities, 15 room boarding house (could be 21) plus bar and function room. Bar is closed, owner is retiring, proven winner ready for new energy!! $475,000 RILiving.com MLS #994597

132 Meadow Street, Warwick:

Office/Mfg Wrhse combo.Great value for user. Nice,clean,bright space! This bldg has been substantially updated& is turn key ready to go.Owner can also modify to suit! Lease option available. $525,000 RILiving.com MLS #1013527

TION DUC E R E HUG

7265 Post Road, North Kingstown:

7.82 acres on US Rt.1. Zoning permits apartments/office/ medical/retail. Many possibilities!! Will build to suit, sale or lease, or land only. Great location. Dozens of acres and walking trails behind property. Adjacent 5+- acres also available. NOW $850,000 RILiving.com MLS #856381

Many more Commercial Properties @ www.ButlerRealty.us .... or email Jeff Butler at jab@ButlerRealty.us Trusted Real Estate Service Since 1977 Looking to Buy or Lease? Call the Butler !

www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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THE RHODE ISLAND

COMMERCIAL & APPRAISAL BOARD OF REALTORS®

Peter M. Scotti & Associates, Inc. PeterBrokerage/Appraisal/Management M. Scotti & Associates, Inc. BArokerage /appraisal /ManageMent Full Service Real Estate Company A full Service Real Estate Company

WATERFRONT DEVELOPMENT SITE PARASCANDOLA WHARF, NEWPORT, RI

57,900 SF LAND SITE, 74,000 SF WATER- 1,000 FEET ON NEWPORT HARBOR WATERFRONT BUS ZONE ALLOWS HOTEL, REST, MARINA, MUL FAM, MIX LAST WHARF DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITY IN NEWPORT, RHODE ISLAND

FOR SALE OR LEASE CRANSTON, RHODE ISLAND NEW, CLASS A SIGNATURE OFFICE BUILDING 21,000 SF SUBDIVIDABLE INTO 6 SEPARATELY METERED UNITS OF 3,150 SF

LAND DEVELOPMENT SITE FOR SALE 91 KICKEMUIT AVENUE, BRISTOL, RI 80,000 SQUARE FOOT PARCEL FULLY ENGINEERED/APPROVED EXCELLENT ACCESS AND LOCATION NEAR BAY WATERFRONT THREE LOT SUBDIVISION PRICE: $289,900.00

FOR SALE, EDMUND PLACE EAST PROVIDENCE, RI 71,984 SQUARE FOOT BUILDINGS FOUR STORY, ELEVATED, SPRINKLERS FORMER ASSISTED LIVING / STUDENT HOUSING WITH 100 ROOMS AND CAPACITY FOR OVER 200 PERSONS, FULL KITCHEN, CENTRAL RT. 44 LOCATION. PRICE: $5,500,000

OFFICE CONDO FOR SALE CED!! 150 CHESTNUT ST, PROVIDENCE, RI REDU 4,280 SF & 3,720 SF OFFICE STUDIO SUITES MILL FINISH, BRICK & BEAMS JEWELRY DISTRICT LOCATION NEAR BROWN U. MED SCHOOL EACH FOR SALE FOR $399,000. COMBINED $750,000

OFFICE BLDGS FOR SALE EAST SIDE OF PROVIDENCE, RI

124 WATERMAN: 7,600 SF VICTORIAN ON COLLEGE HILL NEAR BROWN U. AMPLE OFF STREET PARKING, PREMIER LOCATION, $790,000.00 240 HOPE: 3,000 SF VICTORIAN ACROSS STREET FROM BROWN ATHLETICS FULLY RENOVATED AND MOVE IN READY, $430,000.00

MEDICAL OFFICE SUITES FOR LEASE 49 SEEKONK ST., EAST SIDE/PROVIDENCE 2,000 - 9,400 SF SUITES WET EXAM ROOMS, LABS WAYLAND SQUARE LOCATION

AMPLE ON SITE PARKING GROUND LEVEL H/C ACCESSIBLE COMPETITIVE RENTS

Peter M. Scotti & Associates, Inc. • 401-421-8888

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New Proof

Proof Approved

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Peter246 M.Hope Scotti & Associates, Inc.Island • 401-421-8888 Street, Providence, Rhode 02906 Visit our web page at www.scotticommercial.com 246 Hope Street, Providence, Rhode Island 02906 Visit our web page at www.scotticommercial.com NY Tel: 781-878-4540 Proof NE REal EstatE JouRNal


COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

COMMERCIAL BROKERS This Space is for You! Call Ralph Coppolino 401.837.0239 ralph@rejri.com

our successes | office • 1300 Highland Corporate Drive, Cumberland, RI • 22,300 square feet of new, build-to-suit, class “A” office space • Leased to Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble and Hershey for Peregrine Group • 11 Blackstone Valley Place, Lincoln, RI • 28,000 square foot, class “A” office building • Leased to CVS for Blackstone Management

• 1275 Wampanoag Trail, East Providence, RI • 34,000 square foot class “A” office building • Sold to Dream House Mortgage for The Cranston Company, LLC • 1 International Way, Warwick, RI • 30,000 square feet, build-to-suit, class “A” office space • Leased to GSA (Homeland Security) for VAS Realty • 695 George Washington Highway (Route 116), Lincoln, RI • 50,000 square feet of new build-to-suit, class “A” office space • Leased to CVS/Pharmacare for F. H. French

mgcommercial.com www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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SMALL BUSINESS | What’s In A Word? continued from page 21

SEO is the technical element that gets website pages discovered by search engines SEM are marketing actions that get websites discovered by people Two of the most common pitfalls I see in keyword targeting are when businesses use industry-specific terms in their phraseology (unless of course they are targeting B2B), and focus on the words they want to be discovered by. Naturally, this only applies to businesses that have at least made a connection between their wordsmithing and their actual business. It’s an easy mistake to make. Instead of focusing on jargon and their own intentions – businesses should concentrate on identifying the words people use to find them – and weave these into their strategy. Research and ongoing analysis will spot these words and help single out trends and spikes. I also advise businesses to consider what

Libations Restaurant

keywords/phrases will attract: 1. Their top-5 fastest selling items (services/products) 2. Their top-5 highest $ grossing items For the second part of this name-game, businesses need to add their location reference within their digital assets to market their company locally – so local buyers can discover them. For existing businesses – some careful word constructing will assure this does not detract from your existing brand identity. The focus here is to do some local keyword research to see if your local identifier (i.e. town name) should be added to the front or back of your principle keyphrase – Rhode Island local marketing companies vs. Local marketing companies in Rhode Island for example. Looking back at the original discussion over the naming of “Town Collision Center”, I was thrilled to hear this business went with our advice by selecting “Auto Body of Town” as their namesake. When optimizing the business-side of websites, the in-between words of a page title such as the, and, in, and in this case of, are referred to as stop words - and search engines will largely ignore these. In this case, search engines will see this new business as Auto Body Town – and that’s about as tight as you can

Lounge

S M A L L P L AT E S • B I G F L AVO R • G R E AT VA L U E

get with optimizing a local business. TIP: You could alternate between a town name and/or a zip code for certain website elements. Common areas to implement this new keyword strategy include: • Website title • Website anchor text (the blue-color text that has a website page linked to it) • Social Media profiles and posts • Blogs • Business Profiles - like LinkedIn, Yelp, and Google Places (being phased out by Google+) • Website Image and Video • Photo sharing sites (like Picasa & Pinterest) • Maps and GPS software • Hashtags # • Print media and email marketing Keyword-focused optimization followed by search engine marketing (story for another day perhaps) are the beginnings of a solid online marketing strategy for startups and established businesses alike. The word game – played well.

Chris Sheehy Sidewalk Branding Co. www.sidewalkbranding.co

Our clients know we’re here for them year-round, not just at year-end.

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AT BRAVER, IT’S THE WAY WE DO BUSINESS.

ROBERT J. CIVETTI

155 South Main Street Providence, RI 02903 401 421 2710 www.thebravergroup.com

Libations Restaurant & Lounge at the RADISSON HOTEL PROVIDENCE AIRPORT

2081 Post Road • Warwick, RI 02886 401.598.2121 • www.radisson.com/warwickri

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www.risbj.com | volume one issue six

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RISBJ Issue 6