A Collection Of Small Business News For May 18

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Here’s a small business roundup courtesy of BizEngine. Enjoy!

How Goliath Can Help David

No one’s going to claim that big businesses are best friends forever with small businesses. Often, the competition big businesses bring with them can damage small businesses, if it doesn’t outright crush them.

But there are lessons to be learned from big businesses, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Whether that’s as straightforward as capitalizing on mistakes made by corporate giants or filling in the cracks of the services they provide, it’s a valuable, straightforward article that I would recommend for everyone who has a passing interest in competing with larger companies.

Always remember that competing head-to-head with big businesses is almost invariably a bad idea, but grabbing what market share you can, creating complementary products or simply filling niches they can’t fit are invariably great ideas.

Small Fall In Small Business Optimism

I like to keep the larger small business community abreast of what surveys are saying about their collective optimism levels. Unfortunately, the last two months have seen a dip in the number of cheerful and chipper owners.

For April’s National Federation of Small Businesses survey, the Small Business Optimism Index fell 0.7 points, which isn’t much but isn’t a gain, either. We’ve seen a pattern of decent gains followed by a couple of months of losses in this index for a long time now, largely driven by an economy that stubbornly refuses to rev up. It’s hard to sustain optimism when you compare the here and now to the booming days of the late 1990′s and early 2000′s, no matter who you are.

As I’ve predicted before, you’re likely to see plenty of swings in the next several months, until economic gains become permanent and there’s compelling reasons to be optimistic. At that point, expect rapid gains in these surveys. We’ll all be glad to see that day come.

An IRS Webinar For Small Businesses

To cap off our roundup from today, I’m including a link to this story about an upcoming Internal Revenue Service webinar that should be helpful to most small businesses. I’d urge you to check it out if you’ve got the time.

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