What is your people strategy? A guide to Human Resource development

Filed on 08. Nov, 2010 in Contributors

What is your people strategy? A guide to Human Resource development

By Jennifer Shelton Human Resources has been one of the more prevalent topics among businesses I’ve talked with in Whatcom County over the past eight months. Employers have had questions about hiring and managing employees, dealing with difficult employees, compensation, and providing incentives. I would like to share some of my thoughts on human resource [...]

Exporting for fun and profit

Filed on 14. Oct, 2010 in Contributors

Exporting for fun and profit

By Ken Oplinger President/CEO of the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry I’m a glass-half-full kind of guy. Not that the last few years of economic woe haven’t brought challenges to my view of the world, but I just can’t help always trying to find the silver lining. So I was pleased to recently sit [...]

Celebrate your victories, big and small

Filed on 04. Oct, 2010 in Contributors

Celebrate your victories, big and small

By Tom Dorr Director of the Center for Economic Vitality Owners of small businesses have one of the loneliest jobs in the world. As owners, they have no one to complain to, and they are constantly solving problems. It’s easy to get discouraged and frustrated with declining sales and escalating costs. Our current economy has [...]

Shelton: Marketing should be priority No. 1

Filed on 02. Sep, 2010 in Contributors

Shelton: Marketing should be priority No. 1

By Jennifer Shelton, director of Western Washington University’s Small Business Development Center What is the one business function that brings in the money for the business to use? The accountant can argue that money management is the key to business success. The production people can argue that without a product there is nothing to sell. [...]

Shared Work, business advising can save jobs in tough times

Filed on 02. Sep, 2010 in Contributors

Shared Work, business advising can save jobs in tough times

By Tom Dorr, director of the Center for Economic Vitality Kay Johnson has been successfully growing her company since 1999. That is until 2008, when the economy turned and she, like many employers, has struggled to survive. Kay’s sales were off over 25 percent and she was cutting costs and hording cash. Her 14 dedicated [...]

Oplinger: The case for opposing the B.C. sales tax exemption

Filed on 30. Jul, 2010 in Contributors

Oplinger: The case for opposing the B.C. sales tax exemption

By Ken Oplinger, president and CEO of the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry As a resident of Blaine, the husband of a Canadian, and the friend of dozens of people across the Lower Mainland, I could hardly be called, “anti-Canadian.” That was until I weighed in on the sales tax exemption for B.C. residents. [...]

The ABCs of Profitability

Filed on 01. Jul, 2010 in Contributors

The ABCs of Profitability

By Jennifer Shelton, director of Western Washington University’s Small Business Development Center As a business owner or future entrepreneur, I believe it’s never too early to start thinking about how to make and keep your business profitable. In simple terms, profitability is the amount of sales revenue left over after business costs. Learning to measure [...]

Competing with Internet stores

Filed on 01. Jul, 2010 in Contributors

Competing with Internet stores

By Taimi Gorman, owner of Gorman Publicity I loved the little corner drug store in the south Seattle neighborhood where I grew up. It was the home of fuzzy key chains, cinnamon oil for toothpicks, and the 7-Up floats Mom bought us after playing in concerts. It was a place crowded with toys, health supplies, [...]

Hartrich: 10 green building incentives in 2010

Filed on 04. Jun, 2010 in Contributors

Hartrich: 10 green building incentives in 2010

By Nick Hartrich, Green Building & Smart Growth program manager for Sustainable Connections Sustainable Connections members in the design and construction industry across Whatcom County have accomplished a great deal in the past several years which has placed us in a national leadership position for green projects for a community our size. As I reported [...]

Dorr: Competitive intelligence key to raising profits

Filed on 04. Jun, 2010 in Contributors

Dorr: Competitive intelligence key to raising profits

By Tom Dorr, director of the Center for Economic Vitality Imagine that you could peek into your competitors’ financial statements gleaning instructive business comparisons and competitive intelligence. Or, consider that you can boost sales to your existing customers by knowing their lifestyles and preferences. What are innovative ways your business could cut costs, increase sales [...]

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bGk+PHN0cm9uZz53b29fc2xpZGVyX2hlYWRpbmc8L3N0cm9uZz4gLSBSZWNlbnQgbmV3czwvbGk+PGxpPjxzdHJvbmc+d29vX3RoZW1lbmFtZTwvc3Ryb25nPiAtIFRoZSBKb3VybmFsPC9saT48L3VsPg==