Gregory Woloszczuk

Small Business, Big Lessons: ‘Tis The Season

As the shopping season starts to heat up, so does the potential for fraud. Unfortunately, as sales pick up, the unscrupulous try to take advantage of merchants and consumers. The busier we are, the less we all pay attention to detail. This week we will focus on what retailers can do to protect themselves. The three areas we will focus on are returns, cash / credit card purchases, and general safety. Returns: Be sure to have a clear and fair return policy posted. I have heard of instances where a high end good was purchased and a person tried...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Rinse & Repeat

One of the core operational challenges in a business is consistency. No matter if it’s an online business or old fashioned brick-and-mortar, do your clients know what to expect, and have confidence that their expectations will be met? Consistency in your business depends on two things: people and process. Checklists: One of the biggest struggles with any business as it grows is the ability to transform tribal knowledge into repeatable processes. A combination of checklists, simple step-by-step guides and templates. Even airline pilots with thousands of hours of experience use a checklist before takeoff. Why? Because a written form...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Small Business Saturday

As a small business, are you leveraging Small Business Saturday? Always the first Saturday after Thanksgiving, falling this year on November 25, Small Business Saturday is a dedicated day that promotes shopping local nationwide. Started in 2010, the yearly celebration of local commerce has continued to grow and gain traction, highlighting conventional shopping in a local brick-and-mortar establishment. More often than not, a small local business is run by someone that lives in the community, so Small Business Saturday is more than just an opportunity for bigger sales numbers and foot traffic – it’s also a great way to...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: The Gift of Feedback

There’s one constant about feedback, and it’s that we all love to hear praise. It makes us feel that warm, fuzzy feeling – and it reinforces that you’re making the right choices. Praise makes us feel like we’re not wasting our time. But, what happens when you receive negative feedback? Actively seeking out feedback: It’s all too easy to cringe away, to attempt to rationalize that negative feedback is just bad advice, the viewpoint of someone who doesn’t know what they’re talking about. It’s easy to ignore, because it doesn’t reflect your view of the world. These behaviors are...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Decisions, Decisions

In your day-to-day business operations, how do you make decisions? Have you ever been under stress and made a less than optimal choice? Are people on your team empowered to make the call? Every business needs a framework for making decisions, for handling tough calls. By have a structure in place, the odds of making a good decision for your business are increased – an important advantage in the day-to-day chaos of business. What is the most important item for your industry or sector?  The first step to an effective decision-making framework is to understand what is important to...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Technology & Liability

A small business owner experiences enough daily challenges, but one in particular may end up costing more money than most would expect. If your point-of-sale system is not able to accept EMV cards – more commonly referred to as “chip cards” – then you may be liable for fraudulent or contested transactions. The recent shift toward chip technology and accompanying merchant liability for not adopting said technology began a few years ago. The first major push for large-scale adoption began in October 2015, and the second shift is underway this year. Changes affect everything from ATMs to gas pumps,...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Location, Location Location

Indisputably, a good location is one of the keys to business success. But what makes for a good location? When looking for the perfect place to settle your small business, you might be considering a big end cap space in a shopping center, or a standalone building. You may just be looking for the cheapest rent to minimize overhead costs, something off the beaten path or even inside a mall. The truth is, your location needs to depend on your specific business, rather than the other way around. Three considerations heavily impact the process of choosing a lease: cost,...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: Fun and/or Profit

As a friend of mine told me years ago, “everything looks easy when you’re at a picnic on a Sunday.” Sometimes the same thing can be said about small business. Many people that never owned a small business are envious, thinking that a small business owner must be rich – comparatively speaking – and hardly ever needs to work. They must have so much time off while their employees hold down the fort and handle the day-to-day, right? In a word, no. In this forum, I hope to share real life insights and tips on small business ownership. Sometimes...

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Small Business, Big Lessons: What Happened to My Favorite Dickey’s Barbecue Pit location?

Do I have your attention? For legal reasons, I can’t give any details about what exactly happened just yet, but read on to see lessons learned along the way. I’ll try not to bait and switch you moving forward – but no promises! It was very sad to see what we built up over 10 years, winning numerous awards along the way, and come crumbing down in under 10 months after being taken over by new ownership. The three Triangle locations our company owned and operated supported countless special occasions, family dinners, and more. I will do my best...

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