Tag Archives: Entrepreneur

How to Start a Car Rental Business

When Uber was first launched, those who operated traditional taxi services opposed this new model because it threatened the incumbent cab business.

When Turo, a new rental startup, introduced a modern business model for car renting, the same thing happened. Traditional rental giants did not like this new model. It was not good for their established businesses. 

So what makes the two car rental models different?

With the traditional one, a company owner has a fleet of various car models. This approach offers predictability and safety. A user browses the different cars and picks the model they like for temporary use.

A rental car marketplace, on the other hand, allows their users to make some extra money by renting out their cars. Anyone can find a car nearby and unlock it to run their errands. 

So you can use either one of these two models for your car rental business: the traditional approach or the car rental marketplace which is what new rental companies are using.

How Do You Start Your Car Rental Business?

Step 1: Assess Your Business Idea

You should research your business strategy extensively. There are many competitors in the market. You have to assess their apps’ features, monetization strategy, the location they target, existing audience and target market. 

Trying to do something new with a product that already exists will be hard. Instead, you need a platform that offers premium features and an outstanding user experience. To provide that, you have to understand the inclination and psychology of your potential customers. Know their pain points.

Many startups have tried to copy Uber before but they failed. Lyft came up with their own business model and they are now a car-hailing giant. 

Step 2: Choose a Business Model for Your Car Rental Business

So now you know that you can choose one of two business models. 

Take a look.

B2C approach: with this one, you will be dealing with your customers directly. Customers, thus, look at the cars you have and book the one they like for a two-way or a one-way trip, fill out the necessary papers and you give them the keys. Hertz and Enterprise Rent-a Car use this model.

P2P car rental marketplace: this is a more flexible model for a car rental business. It relies heavily on mobile applications. One thing that makes this idea interesting is the fact that you don’t have to own a vehicle. Get Around and Turo use this business model. 

More start ups are investing in this idea because the interest is growing and it is becoming more popular. 

If you want to start a car rental business, you will need resources, a clear business plan, marketing strategy and a license. 

Step 3: Choose a Car Type Segment

You will need to have different options for your users. For instance, some businesses will offer luxurious cars, exotic cars, sports cars, special events cars, etc.

Alternatively, you can choose to target a super specific audience and only offer a single dedicated car model. Silver car app, for example, only provides Audis. The other option would be to allow all car types. This is the option that many startups prefer because if more car owners register, the business benefits. Customers will also have more options. 

Step 4: Get a License

The procedure for applying for and getting a vehicle rental license varies from one country to another. You can contact an insurer to help you with payment of license fees and rental insurance coverage. 

When it is done, you will receive your license from the local authorities and they will inform the insurer too. Most licenses are renewed annually. 

Step 5: Build an MVP Car Rental App

A mobile app is necessary because people love convenience. This goes for both the P2P and B2C approaches. Initially, you may not need a full-featured app. You can opt for a minimum viable product (MVP) for the app or even build a website. An MVP app only has the basic features that your users will need. 

You will only require a customer app with the B2C approach for the users to look for and book cars. 

The P2P model will require two apps, one for car owners who register their cars and another one for customers who are looking to rent. 

Step 6: Offer Insurance

As a car rental company, you should provide insurance for car owners and customers. So you have to find an insurance provider company you can count on. 

Liberty Mutual Insurance, for instance, covers renters and car owners for Turo. 

You can have different packages for renters. 

What Features Should Be Included in Your Car Rental App?

If you want to stand out among your competitors, here are the most important features that your app will need.

Car Owner App Features 

The car owners are a crucial part of your car rental marketplace. Great features will attract more car owners and your customers will have more options. 

Car owner’s verification: this is for car owners to add their updated personal information such as license expiry date, insurance number, car photos, license number, email, phone number and name. 

A user-friendly dashboard: it lets owners see their transaction history, listed cars, conversations with renters, and more.

Car listing option: an option for car owners to list multiple models in order to earn more.

Car booking management: for owners to check the status of booked vehicles—including payment status. 

Availability management: car owners should be able to choose availability, like weekend options, weekdays or daily.

Discounted price: if car owners want to offer special prices for various occasions, they should be able to do so.

Booking cancellation: have cancellation policies and a feature that allows car owners to cancel rent requests.

Reservation history: car owners should be able to see their current and past reservations.

Car Renter App Features 

Easy registration: the signup process shouldn’t be lengthy. Offer sign up options via Email, Facebook and Google.

Filters: renters should be able to filter their options based on car company, fuel, car type, price, etc. when choosing a car.

Dashboard: this feature lets renters track and manage their profile, activities, messages, transaction history and bookings. 

Renter verification: car riders should include information such as email, license information, etc. for safety purposes. 

Location-based rental: for convenience, users will want a feature that allows them to search for and rent a car nearby.

Booking options: options like instant booking or prior booking for renters to book their dream car would be nice. You should also include per day and per hour renting options.

Calendar option: car renters will love being able to see when cars are unavailable or available. 

Cancellation: have a cancellation option. 

Admin Panel (You) Features

Dashboard: you want to be able to monitor and control the platform by viewing the total number of registered renters, car owners and cars. 

Revenue management: admin should be able to manage the revenue aspect of the business, which includes cancellation charges, commission decisions, etc. 

Manage users: for managing car renters and owners as well as their activities.

Manage listing: this one will allow you to screen new car owners to make sure they comply with the set guidelines.

Booking management: the admin should be able to manage every booking, that is, decline or accept bookings.

Manage listing dimensions: the admin will be able to manage and edit car models, categories and features. 

Ratings/reviews: car renters and owners can rate each other and you can ensure that the language used is appropriate. 

Manage dispute: resolve any issues that arise.

How Do You Earn with a Car Rental Business? 

If you decide to use the B2C approach, you can just set a fixed price for the different car models that you rent out. The customer will pay that price and you can charge them more if, let’s say they overstay with the car.

The P2P marketplace is commission-based. So the renter pays the set amount for the rental period and the car owner pays you commission. 

The car rental sector is booming and it is a great opportunity if you are looking to start a business. 

How Successful People Think and Operate

Successful people do not see the world like everyone else. It is not because they are perfect or because their version of life is easier than yours. However, in one way or another, they always appear to bounce ahead. It does not matter the obstacles they face, the problems that come their way, or how loud their critics sneer—they always come up with a way to emerge victorious.

How do they do this? They have a few beliefs that they hold on to. These beliefs make a difference in the way they fight for success. They do not view the beliefs as some random motivational quotes from a book. What they believe in impacts every aspect of their daily life. 

These Are 18 Things That Successful People Believe

  1. Everything is possible if you are prepared to put in enough effort and time.
  2. If you make up excuses to get out of doing something, that ‘something’ is exactly what you are supposed to be doing.
  3. The people who do not like you much are the ones that will give you the most truthful advice.
  4. Whoever wants something the most is the one who will eventually win it. 
  5. Whatever it takes is exactly what it takes to achieve your life desires.
  6. If you want to keep losing, surround yourself with negative people.
  7. Gratitude, action, fear, and worry are choices that you make. 
  8. If you are not prepared to master all the details, you have very slim chances of winning.
  9. Apathy is a hindrance to achieving something fantastic.
  10. Just because you failed last time does not mean that you should stop trying. 
  11. It does not matter how bad you have it; if you want to make, you will.
  12. No one is responsible for making your decisions. You get to make all your decisions.
  13. If you have been yearning for a second chance, today is your second chance; make use of it.
  14. Your effort’s intensity determines how fast you progress
  15. Be prepared to listen and acquire knowledge; otherwise, you will never get better.
  16. Your actions in private determine your course of development. 
  17. Just because your critics are loud is not reason to believe that they are on the right.
  18. If a solution is easy, guaranteed and fast, it will probably not be useful in the long run. 

In Their Heart of Hearts, Winners Believe That Nothing Is Impossible

In most cases, they have no idea how they are going to win. But even then, they truly believe that they are going to find a way. According to them, the great equalizer is effort. When they have no idea what they should do, they take time to learn and even perfect it.

The things you believe will bring change in your life. This is a good time to pause and seriously think about what motivates you. What are your beliefs? Do you think that life is not fair?  Do you constantly believe that you have it harder than everyone else? Do you blame everyone but yourself?

“Set your mind on a definite goal and observe how quickly the world stands aside to let you pass.” 

-Napoleon Hill

101 of the Greatest Insights and Actions for Work and Life

20/20 hindsight: the “hindsight” bias or “I knew it all along phenomenon” is when you think you had the answer the whole time or that it is common sense. The problem with this is that it creates false confidence. 

Try a new thing for 30 days: drop a habit, take up a new one or learn a new thing for 30 days straight. This is a great way to broaden your skills and increase your capabilities.

80% of your results are from 20% of your efforts (80/20 rule): with this rule in mind, only focus your energy on the most important things. 

Make change a sense of urgency: change is not easy for many people. To get over this resistance to change, make it seem urgent. 

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder” in the long-term: you will forget the negative things and only remember the positive ones.

Only absorb what works for you: you can draw inspiration from anything and anyone but only get what suits you. Tailor what you collect to fit your circumstances. 

Look for the surprise: you easily remember whatever surprises you. Did you learn something that surprised you or a fact that was unexpected? 

Agree and compare to create a relationship: when opinions differ, compare. Contribute when key pieces are left out by others. 

Instead of telling, ask: a wandering mind is more motivated and goal-directed than that which declares its objective. Try, “will I achieve this?” instead of “I will achieve this.”

Ask, “how is this useful?”: to make the most out of information, always ask yourself how you can use it. This helps you make insights actionable.

Ask yourself if it is effective: you may often find yourself trying things that do not work. Asking yourself if something is effective may seem simple but it can lead you to your desired results.

Learned helplessness is dangerous: when things do not go your way, watch how you give yourself an explanation. Avoid making it pervasive, personal or permanent. Questions like, “why me always?” are no good.

Balance conviction and connection: connection refers to how you connect to others while conviction refers to your rigidity or flexibility as far as your beliefs are concerned. Empathize, encourage, validate and be open to new ideas without being too accommodating. 

Be-do-have rather than have-do-be; avoid holding off or having your life on wait mode. “BE” what you want, and you will “DO” according to your beliefs, leading you to “HAVE” what you want.

Careful what you wish for: the grass will always appear greener on the other side but that is not always the case. 

Lead by example: this approach gives you power to act. You will not find yourself blaming others and playing victim. Set your own example of what you consider good and influence others.

Take note of specialization: specialization is great; until things change. Adaptable people get the victory in the long run. 

“OCEAN” personality traits: the OCEAN (Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeable and Neuroticism) refers to the Big Five framework. It is meant to understand how personality relates to behavior. 

Black swan theory: some events are unpredictable but there is a way you can prepare to exploit the positive ones and persevere the negative ones. 

Blink: snap judgments may tell you a lot. If correct, a little input is more useful than a lot of input. Train your senses and mind to focus on what is right and you will make great snap judgements.

Blue oceans: stop competing where there is too much competition. Look into an untapped market space if you must. 

Blue zones: blue zones are the healthiest spots in the world. They teach people how to live longer lives.

Change the question, change your focus: changing your question will change your focus. Ask yourself, “what is right here?” instead of “what is wrong here?”. 

Change your perception or change your procedure: skillfully change your emotions. You can get over any negative emotion in a moment. You can do this by changing your solution or changing your way of experiencing it. 

Change your “How” or your “Why”: sometimes, the “what” is out of your control but if you change your “how” or “why” then you may achieve motivation. You will no longer depend on motivation from outside. 

Begin by changing yourself: it may be difficult or impossible to change someone else but changing yourself is instant. This may include changing your views or how you do things.

Avoid “Have-To” and go for “Choose-To”: choosing to do something will make it more fun. It is empowering and you will not be the victim.

Cognitive dissonance: Wikipedia defines cognitive dissonance as a discomfort brought about by having conflicting cognitions (values, beliefs, ideas) simultaneously. When one is having cognitive dissonance, one tries to change beliefs to achieve a consistent system of belief. 

Delayed gratification: are you “present-oriented” or “future-oriented”? A future-oriented person delays gratification and according to research, navigates through life better.

Deliberate practice: Malcom Gladwell, the author of Outliers: The Story of Success, says that to be successful, you must practice the task for about 10,000 hours. You become experienced by repetitively practicing a skill, tracking your performance, assessing your effectiveness and listening to feedback.

Delphi method: this technique involves using experts to predict and forecast information. A facilitator asks experts to give answers to specific questions anonymously. The collective answers are then used to conclude.

Do it daily: to get into a new habit or get out of an old one, you need to do it daily. Create a habit and condition yourself to do it.

Causational vs. correlational: when two things happen simultaneously, it does not necessarily mean that one caused the other. They may just be correlated. Knowing the difference will make you better suited to get to the root cause.

Stop waiting for inspiration: begin by acting, motivation will come.

Doublethink: learn to think twice. Focus on both the negative and the positive. When you imagine the two sides, you can visualize effectively. 

Dream big dreams: small dreams are not very inspirational. Big ones stir your blood and inspire your mind.

Emotional intelligence: EQ may hold you back or propel you forward. It is defined as the ability to point out, analyze and control your emotions and that of others. 

Energized differentiation: be different with vision, dynamism and invention. 

Enjoy the journey: take a moment to smell the roses. Come up with ways to have fun in your journey. Sometimes, your journey is all you have.

Errors in value and errors in odds: according to Dan Gilbert, people make poor choices because they fail to estimate odds well and they are also not good when it comes to estimating value. 

Relationship before influence: a relationship helps you know the concerns and needs of the other party. It also builds trust.

The third alternative: do not get into a win-lose situation. Find another option because it is always there.

A first impression is a lasting impression: you only get one chance to create a first impression. If you blow your chance, you can change their perception. Let the other person assess you in a new context or situation.

Fortune cookie effect: you can rationalize whatever you want in your mind. You take actions that cause something to come true. 

What you can control over what you cannot: not everything is under your control and this should not be a reason for you to give up. Control your actions, attitude, approach and response. 

Gambler’s fallacy: just because an action or event has not taken place for some time, does not mean that its chances of happening now are high. 

Groupthink: two heads are better than one—this statement is not always true. A group may exaggerate decisions, making the final decision too conservative or too risky. 

Remove the unessential: according to Bruce Lee, it is daily decrease over daily increase. 

Halo effect: sometimes you assess someone globally and apply that to a specific trait. For instance, you may think someone is likeable and, consequently, assume that they are friendly and intelligent. 

The end of the story: the ending of a story is more important than its beginning. 

Measure your life: the best way to measure life is regarding the number of people you touch.

Informational power: information is an impermanent form of power and holding on to it is an even weaker form of power.

Evaluate your thinking: everyone’s mind is flawed. Your thinking has traps and pitfalls. Challenge your thinking and eliminate poor thinking patterns. 

Extrinsic motivation vs intrinsic motivation: find out what motivates and drives you. Do this by connecting your job to your values. 

Irrationality: always treat each decision as crucial if you are looking to make a change. 

Energy management over time management: everyone has 24 hours in a day. The only thing that is under your control is energy. If you manage your energy, you will do more with less effort.

Jigsaw technique: if you want people to overcome their prejudice, pair them up. They will realize, as they work on the project, that they are all humans with vulnerabilities, feelings and basic needs.

Job satisfaction: to make your job more enjoyable, focus on feedback, autonomy, task significance, task identity and skill variety.

Johari window: know yourself and show yourself. This way, you will find it easier to share information that matters and enhance communication. 

Learning style: is your learning style kinesthetic, visual or audio? 

Less is more: less here refers to more focus. 

Linchpin: work towards being indispensable. One way to do this is to always go above the call of duty. Give your all, do more art and break rules to tweak the game.

Link to good feelings: a new habit will be easier to adopt if it is linked to good feelings. You can barely do things that do not feel good. Reframe the meaning of the action.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs: Maslow suggested that there is a set of needs commonly shared by people. Understanding this concept will help you know more about what drives you and others. 

Mentors are short-cuts: with a good mentor, you will avoid pitfalls. A good mentor shows you what you should focus on and hasten your journey to success.

Micro-expressions: this is a very quick involuntary facial expression. It is hard to hide this type of expressions, regardless of how much you know about them.

Mindstyle: do you prefer sequential, random, concrete or abstract? Understand how you prefer to grasp information and order it. 

Mirror cells: everyone has mirror neurons that mirror the feelings or intentions of other people. They can help you explain empathy and imitation.

Flexible people are favored by nature: survival is not for the most intelligent or the strongest, it is for those that adapt very well to change.

Similarities bind; it is true that opposites attract but people attain a special connection at the values. Shared values bring people together.

Parkinson’s law: assign less time to something if you want it to be done faster. Work will expand to fill the available time.

Pygmalion effect: what you expect is what you get.

Reciprocity of liking: people like those that like them. If you do not like yourself, you will not like the people that like you.

Return on luck: Jim Collins suggests leveraging luck by seeing it as an event rather than an indefinable aura. Aim at achieving a high return on luck (ROL). 

Satisfice: to make decisions faster, experts satisfice. They look for the first solution that is perfect for that situation. 

Self-efficacy: one’s self-efficacy beliefs will determine a person’s behavior, motivation and thoughts. 

Dispositional vs situational: did the situation cause you to do that or is it just who you are? 

Get small, think big: small is a key to flexibility, increased effectiveness and more efficiency. 

Social loafing: when people are more, they work less hard. People put in less effort when they are working in groups. 

Speak to the communication needs of people: communication needs include appreciation, approval, accuracy and action. People will give you clues on what they need to hear.

Start with why: you should communicate, act and think in the same way. Start with the thought, from the inside out. Begin with why, then how and finally what.

Synthetic happiness: learn to create your own happiness; it is just as good as genuine happiness.

The effort effect: effort is what makes a difference, not talent. Your effort, in turn, is facilitated or limited by your mindset. Another thing: reward your efforts.

The long view: you cannot predict what will happen in the future. You can, however, play the “What-Ifs”. Use forecasting to prepare for what may happen. 

The paradox of choice: the more choices you make, the poorer your decision will be. You may not even be able to make the decision. 

The power of identity; be rooted in something that will last while enjoying your growth journey at the same time. 

The power of regrets: if you reflect on your worst, you will be motivated to unleash your best. 

The principle of contrast: you can easily lose perspective. Compare with something worse. This principle of contrast is useful when changing perspective, explaining value or negotiating fees.

The progress principle: small progress can significantly make your day. Perfection is not what matters, progress is. 

The “Good Life” secret: learn to allocate more time to your values. Ask yourself how you can do more of the things you love at work.

The two happiness questions: “How happy are you with your life?” and “How happy are you?”. 

Thoughts that work for you: think thoughts that will serve you better.

“To-Date” vs. “To-Go”: if you commit yourself to a goal, you will focus on what is left (and will be more motivated). If you are not that committed, you will concentrate on how much you have accomplished. 

Important vs Urgent: you will achieve your long-term goals if you spend time on the important but non-urgent matters.

Befriend stress: anxiety is a cognitive response while stress is a fight-or-flight response. Stress can be useful while performing physical tasks or simple tasks.

Willpower is like a muscle: you can strengthen willpower through practice, just like a muscle. Know that you can also fatigue it; it is limited.

Yerkes-Dodson human performance curve: do not stress yourself beyond your capacity. You will start producing less with more effort.

You are the company you keep; friends can help you grow or hold you back. They will influence your actions, emotions, attitude and thoughts.

Your strengths facilitate your growth: focus on your strengths if you want to accelerate your success. 

Thoughts shape feelings: shift your focus to change your feelings. 

Zeigarnik effect: to overcome procrastination, convince yourself to do something for “just a few minutes”. You will be motivated to finish what you have already begun.

“Some people dream of success, while others wake up and work hard at it.” 

-Napoleon Hill

Lion Mindset

You wake up, super hungry, looking for the next meal. This is how you are supposed to think every morning when you wake up. Today, there are countless losers in the world, accompanied with losing mentalities.

The losers in question have no desire to see you become successful. Most human beings are not happy when someone, other than himself or herself, succeeds. This is harsh, but it is the cold reality. Many people will never bother taking the next step to make their lives better or improve the lives of future generations.

The fact that you have stumbled upon this book means that you want change. The chapter will give you tips that will help you have a better life; and it starts with your mindset. When a lion rises in the morning, he does not care what other animals think about his actions.

He is driven. He has a goal and nothing can stop him until he attains it. He will pursue it relentlessly until he achieves victory. This is the same approach that you should have in your life. Do not stop to worry about what other people are saying about you.

This will waste precious energy that could otherwise be used to pursue your life goals. They talk because you have decided to make a change, something they cannot do. Before you go to bed, focus on the tasks that you have to complete the following day. This begins your hunger for the next morning.

When you rise up, the first thing you think about are the goals to be hunted for the day. Make a clear list of the next day’s goals and make sure you crush them without compromise. When you wake up, do not lie there feeling sorry for yourself because of a bad knee, headache, or because your spouse is mad at you.

Leave that for losers. In whatever time you have given on earth, manifest the purpose to achieve all you have set your mind to. Do not let anyone’s opinion stop you. Goals are where you either win or lose the battle. If you do not have any goals, you are headed nowhere and you will remain in the same situation that you have always been in.

Keep negativity at bay, because just like excuses, it will slow you down and mess up your mindset for the entire day. Many people like to make excuses, but they will never take a step forward, walk out of their comfort zone, or start a business.

This right here is the reason why many people are comfortable being average. To rise above this, you have to be willing to do what others would not dare.

When a lion is facing a cape buffalo, he knows he will destroy it even before he takes the first step. Your future generations are dependent on you just like a lion’s pride is on him. Use this same approach when faced with life’s huddles. Never have doubts, develop unshaken faith. 

Outline your goals before you go to sleep.

Go after your goals relentlessly.

Stop listening to people.

Get out of your comfort zone.

Have your future and everyone dependent on you in mind when it gets tough.

Be a lion. There are enough sheep in the world.

Travelling Solo – An Entrepreneurs Mindset

Everybody loves to travel but their motivations are different, their meanings and ends are different and most importantly their experiences are vastly different. Travelling is always thought of as a way to enjoy with friends and family; take an ensemble of friends and just relax and be oblivious to the nature around you. This is not the trip which a Thought Entrepreneur should fancy.

Entrepreneurs are Go-Getters, they talk, they explain, they convince, they motivate, they dream and they do anything they can to promote their business but who is the most important entity of every business; the Customer. Who is your customer? How do you talk to them? How do you make relations with them? How do you nourish the relations? This is an important step for every entrepreneur.

Only when you Bend will you be able to touch the ground and subsequently leap forward with greater vigor. Travelling Solo will help you to get away from all the world’s inhibitions. You are alone and you take your own decisions, you talk to people for directions, you ask people about the place, its importance, its history, to learn more about the place. In all this, it is not about what history you learn, what food you eat, what souvenir you collect, it is the experience you garner, and it is the tiny things you learn from such solo trips.

The man is a social animal and when you feel the need to talk, you have the people there to talk to, to share your experiences and learn about their experiences. A Solo Travel is one thing which every Thought Entrepreneur must definitely try, as this stage will allow you a leave but once you become a full-time entrepreneur there is hardly ever a time to complete your daily activities forget about traveling to new places (at least at the start where you are very much required 24/7).

Try Solo Travelling to close-by places and simple one-day travels. Once you get yourself used to such traveling then you can extend the duration of your trips. Learning a new skill was pretty difficult till a few years back. But now with so many Edu Startups we have a vast knowledge skill set available in our hands at the click of our mouse and you can start learning immediately. We have apps to teach us, online courses which even give us certification in various fields.

These courses are completed in various durations and within a matter of a few months, you are equipped with a knowledge which you, probably, would have never even tried to gain in your lifetime. Video tutorials are available to teach you. These are non-certified but will help you learn certain things on a personal level. Even a skill like cooking can help you feel relaxed and give you a joy you never experienced. I learned cooking and cook my own meal sometimes. The joy when the food is cooked, after all, the effort you put in, is just wonderful.

From learning infographics, coding, crafts, cooking, entrepreneurship, finance, negotiation skills, social sciences, languages, etc. almost anything and everything can be learned online. Another important aspect is to listen. It is said, “To be a great speaker, you first have to be a great listener.” We usually don’t like to listen to people as many of them talk about things which don’t matter to you. So the best thing to do is to listen. But listen to what? Listening to Audiobooks can be a welcome relief and an added bonus of being able to learn so many new things as you travel.

Audiobooks are now available on almost all topics. Famous books are also being converted to audiobooks. If you are not that much into reading or sometimes get bored of reading, listening is the way to go. Search online and you will find numerous audiobooks free to download. Just listen to your favorite books and I guarantee you will never go out without an audiobook in your smartphone. When you set out to do something, you may find many obstacles that hold you back way before you start. The unfortunate thing is that most of the time, it is not nobody who drags you back but yourself.

This is why motivation is a very essential aspect of self-help, especially with achieving set goals. Motivation is most important in helping you find pleasure in whatever you are doing, even if you don’t feel like doing it at first. Here are a few ways in which you can build your motivation. Positivity is imperative in self-help; ensure you keep thinking positively throughout. Do not look more into what holds you back, rather, count your success and build on that to get better results.

Making sure to flood your mind with positive things everyday can help. This reduces chances of negative thoughts taking a toll on you and crushing your will power. If possible, try not to see the obstacles that you may come across, but look deeper to see the end even before you start. That way you will stay focused and motivated to get to that far end. Smart goal setting is very useful in helping you see the possibility of whatever you are doing. It is usually wise to set large, but realistic goals, which gives you the spirit of wanting to do more every time.

This makes it easier for you to achieve better results every time. Once you have your goals set, you will feel the obligation to realize them, which can give you the drive you need to get going. Very useful nothing is that a simplified task is easier to achieve, not because it has been lessened; only that it appears easier than when looking at it as a whole. Try to break the task before you down into sections.

Simplifying your task is very useful in making every bit seem simple and achievable, which gives you the urge to go for it. Getting started with the task ahead of you may be very intimidating. However, if you give it an intelligent approach, you will find yourself at the other end in no time. You can start with doing the tough tasks first, which boosts your confidence in doing the rest.

Alternatively, you can give it a smooth take off by starting with the simplest tasks, then creating a flow into the difficult parts. Quite often, the time may slip away before achieving what you had planned. However, even if you are lagging behind time, do not bully yourself into putting additional efforts, since this may lead to a lack of interest. Keep going with the pace that you can afford, but make sure you create a habit of timing yourself to avoid the tendency of being always behind time.

Getting yourself motivated can be that simple, it all depends on how you think high of yourself and believe in your ability to achieve. Whether it is a single day task, a long-term goal, or about that purpose, you want to make it in life, depending on how you weigh your strengths against your weaknesses. More importantly, how you don’t let your downsides get the best of you is all it takes in self-help.

What is a Notary Signing Agent and How Do You Start a Business?

A Notary Signing Agent is a Notary Public who has acquired a familiarity and understanding of mortgage loan documents either via experience or training. This individual will work as either is hired as an independent contractor for signing agencies, or as a self-employed person receiving assignment through his/her own marketing and advertising efforts.

The job consists of ensuring that real estate loan documents are properly executed by the borrower(s), notarized, and returned promptly for processing to the title or escrow officer. This is an important and vital service for borrowers and closing agents, without which a mortgage loan transaction would not be able to be consummated.

The Statue of Frauds and the Patriotic Act seek to maintain integrity of a signer’s signature to authenticate a document, and to identify the borrower for tax reporting and anti-money laundering regulation. This is significantly role for a notary important, now that so many more transactions are being conducted online or by telephone.

A Notary Signing Agent will travel to the customers home or office at their convenience to execute loan documents instead of having the borrower interrupt their busy schedule to drive to the title company, or escrow agents office.

This convenience allows all parties to the transaction be more productive and, in any cases, reduce the settlement cost. Closing agents have discover this is a much-preferred means of doing business, allowing the borrower to review the documents in the privacy of their home or office while increasing the volume of loan a closing agency can handle.

Your primary duties will include answering phones, customer service, some filing, notarizing documents, networking and marketing your services. You will be required to pass a test or exam sponsored by your state’s governing agency to obtain a certificate or commission. At times being a Notary Signing Agent can be fast-paced and require flexibility and patience.

To really be successful as a Notary Signing Agent you must be reliable, honest, willing to learn, a good communicator, work well with others, enjoy dealing with people, and be somewhat computer literate. Being multi-lingual is a great advantage, as it increases the population of people you can serve.

One of the biggest challenges beginning Loan Signing Agents face in getting their business up and running is marketing. There are just too many tasks involved in setting-up, managing and marketing a new business. The list of tasks seems daunting and never-ending.

This is what stops most beginners, the amount of time, energy and effort and needed to develop the business and start getting regular clients that pay well and promptly. One of the easiest ways to get your practice off to a good start is to promote your service online through a high-traffic notary portal. Title, insurance, mortgage lenders, medical related industries, traffic schools, auto dealers, bails agents and the public depend on these sites to find notaries daily for loan signings and other general notarial related work.

This is the quick means to marketing your notary practice and giving your business a jumpstart, while you work to develop long-term business relationships. Plus, you get a webpage as part of the price.

The Secret to Happiness

Monetary wealth is not what you need to be happy. You may not want to hear this but it is the truth. Anyone can access happiness. 

Many people work towards financial freedom and get disappointed when they learn that it does not come with happiness. 

You can be happy right this moment, regardless of the troubles in your life or your current financial situation. 

Money and Happiness: The Truth

When you have financial freedom, your life becomes self-determined and not predetermined. You can no longer make excuses for having a less than ideal life. Your happiness becomes your responsibility. 

People who work every day have a predetermined life. Most of their time is spent working. They spend the remaining time catching up with family and running errands. They barely have time to build a unique life destiny. 

After you gain financial freedom, you suddenly have all the time in the world. Your days are not predetermined and you can do whatever you want. You cannot blame your unhappiness on anyone. This becomes a burden for many people. 

When Reality Strikes…

Retiring young, having attained financial freedom is an unexplainable feeling. And it is even better when you have a significant other to share the experience with. But like many people, your happiness will be short lived. 

You spend all your time working hard—thinking that all you need is financial freedom and then you will be personally free. 

That is not how it works. 

Even after financial freedom, you will still be the same person. Your personal issues will still be with you. The only difference is that you will have more time to see the truth. And this time, you won’t have work as a distraction. 

You will realize that what you really needed was not financial freedom but personal freedom. 

Some people may slip into mental issues while others will find themselves on a personal growth journey. 

Daily Happiness Accountability

Your thoughts determine your happiness. If you want to be happy, have the right frame of mind. If you can’t come up with happiness thoughts off the top of your head, here are a few to get you started. 

Choose Happiness

  • Choose not to be unhappy.
  • Let happiness be a direct choice; not dependent on anything.
  • You don’t need favorable events to be happy.
  • Don’t postpone happiness.
  • Work from a happy place.
  • Don’t limit your happiness.
  • Misery, just like happiness, is an option.

Let Go of Judgments

  • Have an accepting attitude.
  • Don’t complain, shame or blame.
  • Be compassionate toward others.
  • Believe that everything is for the best.
  • Don’t focus on other people’s businesses.
  • Choose how you react to events.

Be Present

  • You are unhappy because you worry about the future or regret the past.

Be Grateful

  • Don’t take anything for granted.
  • Live in your blessing.
  • Appreciate every little miracle.
  • Be thankful for what you have now.
  • Begin your day with active gratitude.

Strong Social Connection

  • Be authentic.
  • Simplify yourself. Have one face.

Live with Contribution

  • Make someone else’s day.
  • Serve a bigger purpose.
  • Give happiness to experience happiness. 

Top 21 Benefits of Financial Coaching

There is so much information everywhere you turn. And you cannot be good at everything. Building wealth for many people is complex. You can barely find time to read about all things finance. That is why a financial coach may be your best option. Here are some of the benefits you will enjoy. 

Customized wealth plan: financial coaching helps you get a wealth building plan, customized based on your interests, resources, values and unique skills. 

Consistent results: once you have a plan, you need to be consistent in your actions. Financial coaching offers weekly accountability which eliminates distractions and procrastination. 

Improved efficiency: without wasteful distraction, you will have clarity and focus more on your wealth plan. 

Less mistakes: a financial coach brings her experience to the table and the experience of all her other clients. This helps you avoid most mistakes. 

Lasting change: a financial coach won’t just offer you a temporary fix. They find the underlying cause of your financial troubles and make changes that will last.

Personal confidant: financial coaching sessions are non-judgmental and private. The coach gives you undivided attention and they don’t have conflicting interests.

Balance and happiness: your financial life is tied to other parts of your life. So while the coach helps with finances, they also improve every other area such as health and relationships. 

Fast growth: coaching cultivates an environment that is conducive for fast growth. Stress and risk are properly managed. 

Enhanced problem solving: as you grow, expect obstacles and problems. But it is easier with financial coaching because you have an experienced brainstorming partner. 

Creative alternatives: following conventional paths will rarely bring you to success. But new paths are not without risks. A financial coach helps you face the risks creatively.

Better financial habits: financial coaching improves your financial habits which eventually have a positive impact on other areas of your life. 

Thrive, don’t just survive: financial coaching provides a plan and actions to take. You will have no doubts about your future when it comes to finances.

Wealth as a primary business: in your journey, you will learn that personal finance is like a business. 

Become a financial expert: the coach will educate and equip you with knowledge required to make effective decisions. 

Proven principles: don’t guess or invest based on other people’s opinions. A coach will give you proven strategies and models.

Confidence in investing: with proper knowledge, you will know what to do even when things are bad in the markets. 

Strong personal foundation: financial coaching gives you a strong reliable financial foundation. 

Specialized resources: the coach will offer you access to resources and knowledge that are hard to come by. And they will be customized just for you. 

Simplified concepts: there are a lot of complex topics in wealth building. A financial coach breaks them down for you. 

Convenient: you can choose to have the coaching done over the phone and set a schedule that works for you. 

Measurable results: you measure financial coaching by its results. You get value for money or discontinue. 

20 Recession-Proof Businesses That Thrive in Hard Times

If you are looking for a side hustle or a business that will thrive during the current times, you will find this post helpful.

What Is a Recession?

It can be defined as a temporary economic decline characterized by a drop in the GDP for two consecutive quarters. 

Effects of a Recession in Real Life

These are the things that are likely to happen in a recession:

  • Interest rates fall
  • Discretionary spending declines
  • Consumer confidence decreases
  • The stock market falls
  • Unemployment increases

 But even then, here are some businesses that can thrive.

Rental Properties

In the Great Recession, many people lost their homes, thanks to foreclosure. However, all of them still had to find another place to live. And so they started renting.  

Mobile Notary Services

Interest rates decline during recessions and more people refinance. The demand for mobile notaries goes high as a result.

Remote Freelance Service/Virtual Assistant

Virtual hiring and remote work help companies cut costs to survive. So find a service you can offer remotely. 

Used Clothes

People seek to save money during a recession and they turn to thrifting. Try reselling your good clothes on eBay.

Alterations

In an attempt to save money, people opt for alterations. If you know your way around a sewing machine, this could be profitable. 

Flea Market Flipping

People looking for quick cash may be in a hurry to sell while others will want to save money by buying used.

Online Content

This includes a YouTube channel, podcast or website. Focus on adding value to people and you can make money.

Mobile Mechanic

People will still need repairs and maintenance for their cars during a recession.

Resume and Cover Letter Writing

With high unemployment rates, job applicants will want their resumes to stand out.

Tutoring

Tutor people who are trying to improve their skills or learn new ones.

Online Courses

Traditional education is expensive for many people. So why not share your knowledge by creating an online course?

Land Flipping

Many people may want to sell their land for quick money. You can buy from them and resell.

Handyperson Services

A recession means hard times. Instead of buying new stuff, more people choose to get handyperson services.

Food and Beverage

The need to eat and drink doesn’t go away even when times are tough. You could become a delivery driver.

Knife Sharpening

People will be eating out less and cooking at home more. Create a knife sharpening business to help them.

Child Care

This will most likely remain an essential business because parents still have to work.

Bookkeeping and Accounting

Business owners tend to pay more attention to their books when things get tough. And they will want the advice of a professional.

Commercial Cleaning

Commercial and retail settings have to maintain cleanliness at all times. 

Product Licensing

Pitch your smart product ideas to companies. You may land a great deal.

Home Staging

Professionally staged homes sell faster. So this is something that home sellers will invest in.

Storage Auction Units

Buy storage units on auctions. You never know what treasure you will find. 

10 Keys That Every Home Based Business Owner Should Implement For Success

1) Attitude–

One very important factor in running a business is your attitude towards it. You should treat your business like a business.

This is very important whether you work your business full-time, or part-time. A very close friend of mine, who is also a colleague, is a mother of 4 who works her home business around her family. In this case, she has put her family first, and at the same time, still been able to develop her business.She works part-time, but she has a full-time attitude. To put it another way, if you have a lacking attitude, you’ll have a lacking income. However, if you have a business attitude, you’ll have a business income.

Keeping your attitude in mind while running your business is one of the first steps to ensuring your success.

Being successful working part-time on your business, or working full-time, is more than achievable. However in saying that, it is highly unlikely that working in your “spare time” will achieve you success.

2) The Environment In Which You Work–

Keeping with the attitude principles discussed above, it is necessary to remember that while you are working from home, you should make sure that you have a space to call your own; your own “business at home” office, free from distractions.

Keep the theme going with a comfortable office chair, and a well laid-out and organized desk. Stationery supplies will also be of assistance, so be sure to include the following in your “home office”:

  • Pens
  • Highlighter
  • Hole Punch
  • Stapler
  • Sticky Tape
  • Note Book(s)
  • A system which will enable you to easily and efficiently store your physical files and documents.
  • Ring Binders
  • Manillia Folders

Do you have a fast internet connection? If not, consider the use of a broadband internet connection. Anything you do will take a certain amount of time, and your time is a very valuable assest. Faster internet means you will have more time for other things.

3) Schedule–

Dividing up your spare time between your business, your family, or your “significant others” will require a carefully planned schedule. Just like office hours in which you would work, when you allocate time for work, make sure that you work during this time. Equally important is to make sure you have time for other commitments – time with your family, exercising, education, and leisure time are all equally important factors in your life. Its also a good idea to keep in mind why you are doing what you are doing. For example, if you are starting your home business to spend more time with your family, you don’t want your work time consuming valuable family time.

With a home business, the only “boss” you have is yourself and your schedule. Lets say for instance that you are working during your allocated work time, and you have unexpected visitors, or people calling you. You have to make a choice; are you really commited to running your own business? Are you commited to business success? Your choices in these types of situations will govern whether or not you have a “business attitude”, or a “hobby attitude”.

However, you may need to adjust the way you make your choices. This is especially true in a family environment. In this instance, it may be necessary to discuss with your partner and/or children an agreed period of time which is classed as business time, in which you will not be interrupted. It may also help to print or write down this schedule and place it somewhere prominent so as to inform all family members of your work schedule.

4) Describing Your Business–

Make sure that when asked about your business, you are able to describe it concisely; a strong and powerful one or two sentence about your business that someone can repeat easily about describing your business to others. A company slogan or “tag line” can also be invaluable for promoting your business; take the time to create a unique and memorable tag line or slogan.

5) Knowledge Of Your Services Or Products–

You now have your product and your service in which you sell, whether or not you actually use your product or service you sell, it is a wise decision to make sure that your knowledge of your product or service is intimate and well-founded. For instance, if you sell ebooks, then ensure you know the content and the value in which it holds; if you sell software, ensure that you know how it works, “inside and out”. In doing so, your reputation will develop as someone who provides quality information about a product or service, and because of this knowledge, you yourself can become a preferred supplier.

However, it may not always be practical to use certain products (as an example, a man may choose to sell wedding dresses), in which case the seller wouldn’t be a product or service user, though in saying that, the seller can still have extensive knowledge of the product or services benefits and features.

6) Administration–

It is essential to implement good record keeping practices.

This can include tasks such as consulting a tax advisor who can advise you on the best and most optimal way to set up and store your financial records, as well as which records need to be kept. In addition, your advisor could also recommend record keeping systems which can help you in achieving a more efficient and simpler means of organizing this aspect of your business.

You may also be told advice on the most effective arrangments and set ups for your banking necessities. In doing so, you will most likely be advised to seek out seperate bank accounts for your business.

If you use various logins, passwords, and usernames, it would be a wise decision to keep track and store this various information.

The tools and methods in which you track these are varied; from a simple paper notebook to free and commercial software.

7) Protection For Your Computer–

Your computer houses all your important business data, and is also the lifeline of your business dealings. In saying this, it is vital that you protect your computer.

Pieces of software such as virus scanners, personal firewalls, anti-spyware and adware, and even an email scanner, should all be implemented to help with the protection of your computer.

8) Obtaining A Domain Name–

For any home-based, online business, it is more than just essential to have a domain name for your business, it is vital. There are many domain registrar companies out there. Take your pick.

9) Processing Of Your Payments–

Any online business will need to the ability to accept payments. Payment processors such as Paypal, 2Checkout, and Clickbank, all offer multiple ways to accept payment, including the ability to accept credit card payments online.

As an online business just starting out, this is the most effective, effecient, and economical way to get started in accepting online payments. As your business starts to grow and develop, it may be necessary to look into obtaining your own merchant account for transactions.

Also, it may be worth while taking into account other forms of currency online, such as eGold.

10) Email Accounts–

The more professional and trusted your online home business appears, the more likely your customers are going to do business with you. One of the most easiest and simplest ways to do this, is to use an associated email account. After obtaining your own domain, it is possible to create your very own associated email account.

Final Comments–

In finishing, I’d like to leave you with the following comments regarding the running and owning of your internet business. Conduct your business ethically, ensure that your customers receive the best service, and be proud to put your name to the products and/or services that you sell, and you will soon seen the fruits of your efforts. Taking into account this last statement, and the above 10 key points, you’ll find yourself on track to developing a trusted, professional, and sustainable long term internet business.

10 Easy Ways To Organize Your Business Finances

Whether you are a new entrepreneur or a more experienced business owner, taking control of your finances can feel like a part-time job. Some simple tips can help you streamline your time, organize your finances and reduce the stress of business money matters.

  1. Keep Your Bills in One Place

When the mail comes, make sure it goes in one place. Misplaced bills can be the cause of unwanted late fees and can damage your credit rating. Whether it’s a drawer, a box, or a file, be consistent. Size is also important. If you get a lot of mail, use an area that won’t get filled up too quickly.

  1. Pay Your Bills on Schedule

Bill paying can be simplified if it’s done at scheduled times during the month. Depending on how many bills you receive, you can establish set times each month when none of your bills will be late. If you’re paying bills as you receive them, chances are you’re spending too much time in front of the checkbook. Although bills may state “Payable Upon Receipt”, there’s always a grace period. Call the creditor to find out when they need to receive payment before the bill is considered late.

  1. Read Your Credit Card Statements

Most people take advantage of low interest credit card offers but never read their statements when paying the bill. Credit cards are notorious for using low interest as bait for new customers then switching to higher rates after a few months. Make a habit of looking at your statement carefully to see what interest rate you are paying each month and if any transaction fees have been applied. If the rate increases or a transaction fee appears on your statement, a simple call to the credit card company can oftentimes be beneficial in resolving the matter. If not, try to switch your money to a more favorable rate.

  1. Take Advantage of Automatic Payments

Most banks offer a way to automatically deduct money from your account to pay creditors. In addition, the creditors usually offer a lower interest rate when you sign up for this payment option because they get their money faster and on-time. Consider it as one fewer check to write, envelope to lick and stamp to buy. Just make sure you record the deduction when the automatic payment is scheduled or you run the risk of bouncing other checks.

  1. Computerize Your Checkbook

Using a software program is a handy way to organize your finances. Whether it’s Quicken(r), Microsoft Money(r) or another package, these easy-to-use programs make bill paying and bank reconciliation a cinch. Computer checks can be ordered almost anywhere and fit right into most printers. Once the checks are printed, all of the information is automatically recorded in your electronic checkbook. Furthermore, many banks have direct downloads into these software packages so when money is deposited or withdrawn, the transaction is entered immediately onto your computer. And, when it comes time to do taxes, it couldn’t be easier.

  1. Get Overdraft Protection

Most banks have a service where, if you run the risk of bouncing a check, the money will come from another source. For a nominal fee, the bank will link your checking account to either a savings, money market, or credit card so the embarrassment of bouncing a check will be avoided. Call or visit your bank to learn about this convenient feature.

  1. Cancel Unused Accounts

Whether it’s a credit card or bank account, write a letter requesting that the account is formally closed. Not only will this improve your credit score, it is a useful way to avoid money from being scattered all over the place. Don’t let department stores and credit card companies lure you into opening new accounts by offering favorable interest rates and purchase discounts. It’s easy for credit to get out of hand by taking advantage of every credit offer that comes your way.

  1. Consolidate Your Accounts

If you have several credit card accounts with outstanding balances, try to consolidate them into one. Be careful and check the balance transfer interest rates and one-time fees. Also, make a list of all your open Money Markets, Savings, CDs, IRAs, Mutual Funds, and other accounts to see if any consolidation can be done. Keeping your money in fewer places eliminates all of the guesswork involved and reduces errors.

  1. Establish Automatic Savings

Create a link from your checking account into a savings account that will not be touched. This can usually be done through the banks and automatic amounts will be transferred over each month. Most people will not put money into a savings account on a regular basis. They may wait until a large tax refund check arrives or some other event to actually deposit money into savings, retirement or other accounts. If you establish an automatic savings deposit every month, your accounts will begin accumulating money faster than you think.

  1. Clean up Your Files

Make sure your paid bills are organized in a filing cabinet. Keep individual files for paid bills. Go through your files at the end of each year and throw out bills and receipts no longer needed for auditing purposes. Contact your local IRS office to see how long records need to be kept for audits. Usually federal tax return audits can be done three years back but cancelled checks may need to be kept for seven. Consult the Internet for auditing and records-keeping procedures for your state or region.

(c) 2005 DebtGuru.com(r). This article may be freely distributed as long as the signature file and active link are included.

Michael G. Peterson is the Vice President of American Credit Foundation, an IRS 501 (c)(3) non-profit consumer credit counseling organization that has assisted thousands of individuals and families with their financial situations through seminars, education, counseling services, and, debt management plans. For more information, and free consumer resources visit http://www.debtguru.com.

How to Start and Grow a Staffing Agency

Temporary staffing agencies have the potential to grow fast and become profitable under the proper management. However, they have too many moving parts and to own/manage one, you need to be an expert in a number of areas. 

How Do You Make Money with a Staffing Agency?

Basically, a staffing agency leases employees to businesses that require staff. They pay these employees a percentage of what the businesses pay and the difference is their profit. The margins vary depending on location, demand, supply and industry.

Some companies prefer to work with staffing agencies because they can get employees as needed. Staffing agencies are also beneficial to employees. The work environment is flexible and they get lots of new opportunities. 

Start and Grow Your Staffing Business

Here are nine steps to guide you.

1. Assess Your Skill Set

If you want to be successful, there are skills that you must have. You should be knowledgeable about:

  • Finding clients
  • Finding employees
  • Matching employees and clients
  • Managing employees/personnel

Each of these skills is important. They are all necessary for growing your business. If you are missing one, you should hire someone who is good in that area.

2. Focus on the Right Industry

Evaluate the needs of the market and find a way to fulfill them. Make sure you fully understand the demand and supply cycles of the industry you select. 

A staffing agency generally involves three segments:

  • Professional/technical
  • Industrial
  • Office/clerical

Whatever industry you choose, narrow down to a specific industry. It is wise to start small and go from there. 

3. Calculate the Start Up Costs

There are operational and establishment costs. Establishment costs are for setting up the business. Most of them are one-time. 

Operational costs are those needed to find clients, employees and deliver services initially. 

4. Understand Cash Flow

When you have a staffing agency, you have to pay the employees on a weekly basis or every two weeks. But the clients pay every month or two. If you don’t manage this delay, problems will arise. So this is something you have to know before you start.

5. Know Where to Get Employees

It is not as easy as you might think. Ensure that your business stands out so people will want to work with you. 

You can get employees through referrals, contacts, LinkedIn, job boards, etc. 

6. Find Your Clients

This is another hard task. Why would a client want to work with you and not your competitor? How are you any different? These are questions you have to answer beforehand. 

7. Find a Payroll Service

Most staffing agencies forward or improperly withhold taxes until it is too late. Before you even start finding employees, get a payroll service. You will save yourself a lot of trouble. 

8. Proper Insurance

Sit down and have a chat with an insurance agent in your industry. Some necessary policies include:

  • Property coverage
  • Workers’ compensation
  • Professional liability insurance
  • EPLI (employee practices liability insurance)
  • Employee theft and crime coverage
  • CGL (commercial general liability)

9. Handle the First Cash Crunch

Before you begin the business, get a sufficient cash reserve or cushion.