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How Midsize Companies Can Maximize Growth and Efficiency

In 2021, midsize companies are ready to grow by taking advantage of pent-up demand. But how can they fund the growth they seek? Many of these companies have the solution at hand but don’t know it. Data and research show that middle-market companies can fund much of their growth through efficiency. Often, however, companies look for efficiency by cutting costs in ways that actually defund growth and leave an enterprise anemic and stressed. The authors offer three approaches that feed efficiency and growth at the same time. First, look at the complete productivity equation. Second, manage your capital properly. Finally, take advantage of three unique cost-management opportunities.

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4 Payroll Mistakes That Could Get Your Business into Trouble

  If you run a small business and have employees, you know the importance of payroll. You may also know how much time and effort it takes to get things right. Instead of focusing all of your energy on payroll, however, what if you used services and resources from trusted professionals like Daves Bookkeeping & Tax Services to eliminate the stress and guesswork?    Interested in learning more? Then you can start with these tips for avoiding payroll mistakes.    Using a Personal Bank Account    For those who are just getting started in business, it may seem convenient to pay employees out of a traditional bank account. This could be a huge mistake with major consequences for your business, however, if you decide to use your personal account rather than a business bank account. Here are some reasons why:            Without a business account, you’ll

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Improve Your Law Office Productivity With QuickBooks

When it comes to accounting, QuickBooks is recognized as the number one business financial software out there today. That’s why so many law firms use QuickBooks for Law Firms. It takes the complexity out of your financial accounting process and makes life easier for you, your clients, and your vendors.   The program was designed specifically with the needs of legal practices in mind so it can handle all the financial management needs of your firm. And, when you combine Quickbooks with your case management technology, your firm can have a powerful, all-in-one law firm solution.   Here are some of the ways QuickBooks for Law Firms can make your law office more productive and efficient.     Tracks, records, and invoices for legal services rendered, which are often based on varying hourly rates. Records hours worked and then passes the time through to client invoice. Provides one-way synch of accounting data into QuickBooks that

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Should Your Business Be an LLC or an S Corp?

Here’s how to decide whether to incorporate your business as a limited liability corporation or an S corporation. You’ve finally decided to start a business of your own. Or maybe you have been running one as a sole proprietor, even moonlighting on the side, and have decided you need to protect your personal assets from those involved with your growing business. You might even decide that there could be a tax break in it for you. Whatever your reasoning, you’re likely contemplating a choice that many entrepreneurs face: Should your enterprise be structured as a limited liability corporation (LLC) or an S corporation (S corp), which is named after subsection S of Chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code? These two organizational forms have similarities and differences–which can make choosing between them and others, like a C corporation (which includes publicly-held companies), confusing at best. Each state might also have different

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Will Movie Theaters Survive When Audiences Can Stream New Releases?

Last month Warner Brothers announced that all of the movies it will release in 2021 will be available on Warner’s HBO Max subscription streaming service — on the same day they premiere in U.S. theaters. That includes such expected hits as Matrix 4, Dune, Godzilla vs. Kong, and The Suicide Squad. This announcement has had a seismic impact on the movie industry, for several reasons. First, prior to this announcement almost all major Hollywood movies were given a three-month exclusive theatrical release before they were available on in-home channels. Indeed, theater owners had threatened to boycott any studio that violated the exclusive theatrical release window — a threat that AMC Theaters acted on in April of 2020, when, to punish NBCUniversal for releasing Trolls World Tour simultaneously in theaters and on digital channels, it announced a boycott of all of the studio’s movies. Second, while several studios had released movies on digital channels while theaters were closed

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Pajamas Are the New Sweatpants—How to Wear Them Everywhere

Men and women are trading their sad WFH uniforms for snazzy sleepwear, spending every waking hour in snugly bliss. These expert tips will help you style PJs for almost any socially distant activity. PAJAMAS ARE at least partially responsible for keeping Vincent “the Chin” Gigante out of jail for decades. Starting in the 1960s, the late Mr. Gigante, a notorious New York mob boss, feigned mental illness in a surprisingly successful scheme to convince authorities that he couldn’t possibly be the head of the Genovese crime family. To keep up appearances, he’d meander through his Greenwich Village neighborhood mumbling to himself while wearing slippers, sleepwear and a bathrobe. His pajama game helped him elude arrest until the 1990s, at which point he was locked up for racketeering and conspiring to murder his Mafioso rivals. Need help organizing your books. We are here to help! Today, the Chin’s ploy wouldn’t fool anyone.

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CFOs Face Challenges Forecasting Capital Spending Plans for 2021

Finance chiefs must decide whether to make long-term investments based on changes in demand during the pandemic Finance chiefs across industries are facing a common challenge: Predicting whether pandemic-driven shifts in customer demand and consumer behavior are here to stay. The task, which is part of the budgeting process for 2021, in many cases means placing a bet on what they expect the future will look like—and what they think their companies should spend on plants and other big-ticket items. Capital expenditures are investments in assets such as land, buildings and technology that companies use to generate growth. Executives often make these longer-term spending plans covering multiple years. The pandemic has made the call much harder. “They look at their projects, they look at their capex, and they don’t know where things are going to be in the future,” said Mark Gottfredson, a partner at advisory firm Bain & Co.

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How Managers Can Support Remote Employees

In the global transition from corporate hallways to home offices, we’ve left something behind: meaningful access to managers. Gone are the instant answers to unblock progress, information streams that managers are privy to before the rest of the organization, informal feedback and coaching while walking together after a meeting, and predictable process and structures for communicating about work and ensuring mutual accountability. Last week, during a coaching call, a senior director lamented, “I’m stalled because I don’t know how to connect with my manager on the less formal stuff — the way I used to.” He’s not alone. Manager distancing is frustrating employees and stalling work. But managers are finding themselves struggling, too. For every employee who is trying to reach their manager, a manager is attempting to connect with half a dozen or more direct reports, plus trying to get direction from their own boss. In a poll of

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These Tiny Last-Minute Tax Changes Could Be a Big Deal in 2021

From stimulus checks to early retirement-plan withdrawals, here are some late-breaking items that could alter either your 2020 return or how you approach your taxes in the year to come With taxes, small changes often add up to big differences—and major confusion. Last year Congress passed two important bills in response to Covid-19 that contain a slew of tax changes, with the most recent one signed by President Trump on Dec. 27. Some of the changes apply only to 2020, while others affect more than one year or take effect beginning in 2021. The new year also brings automatic inflation adjustments that slightly shift tax brackets and some other thresholds. That’s a lot to keep straight, so here’s a rundown of the most recent tax changes and when they apply, according to the Senate Finance Committee, plus an overview of this year’s key tax numbers. Happier New Year in 2021! •

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Cruise Ships Can’t Sail Away From Covid

Small luxury operators have tried strict testing requirements and capacity limits, but onboard outbreaks persist Authorities around the world halted voyages on large passenger ships in March after Covid-19 tore through scores of vessels, but cruising never really stopped. Smaller cruise ships exempted from the suspension continued to sail selected routes. To keep the deadly virus off ships, these boutique operators experimented with a variety of new precautions. The result: They mostly failed. Coronavirus infections repeatedly pierced so-called safety bubbles promoted by luxury cruise lines. Since June, about 200 people have tested positive for the virus on nearly two dozen cruises, according to a Wall Street Journal tally. At least one person, a crew member, died in his cabin with the virus, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Transmission has not been controlled sufficiently,” the CDC said in a September report that cited the virus’s continued spread on smaller cruise

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The Discipline of Teams

What makes the difference between a team that performs and one that doesn’t? Early in the 1980s, Bill Greenwood and a small band of rebel railroaders took on most of the top management of Burlington Northern and created a multibillion-dollar business in “piggybacking” rail services despite widespread resistance, even resentment, within the company. The Medical Products Group at Hewlett-Packard owes most of its leading performance to the remarkable efforts of Dean Morton, Lew Platt, Ben Holmes, Dick Alberding, and a handful of their colleagues who revitalized a health care business that most others had written off. At Knight Ridder, Jim Batten’s “customer obsession” vision took root at the Tallahassee Democrat when 14 frontline enthusiasts turned a charter to eliminate errors into a mission of major change and took the entire paper along with them. Such are the stories and the work of teams—real teams that perform, not amorphous groups that we

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