Five Reasons to Hire a Lawyer When Starting a Business

Jun 14, 2019

Small business owners often save money by trying to wear as many hats as possible. However, when it comes to legal issues, sometimes this strategy is penny smart, but pound foolish. In other words, it is often cheaper to prevent a problem from arising than to fix the problem after it has already arisen. Here are five areas where a lawyer can help a business as it launches:

Entity Formation

Intricately intertwined with the question of how to start a business is the issue of the legal business structure to be used. Often, an entrepreneur will start a business as a sole proprietorship or partnership without fully appreciating the risks involved. Lawyers can explain the differences between sole proprietorship or partnership, on the one hand, and a limited liability entity such as a corporation or limited liability company, on the other hand. More importantly, a lawyer can help form the entity in the relevant state to ensure that all the benefits are there when they are needed.


Almost any agreement, whether written or oral, can form the basis of a valid contract. One of the most important tips for entrepreneurs is to have a lawyer on board to help navigate the startup business through the field of contract law. For example, finding a business partner can supercharge a business’s growth and give the business the safety net to avoid failure. In fact, over 80% of businesses fail due to cash flow issues, according to a study by U.S. Bank. However, defining the relationship between the business and the business partner is often done through a contract that specifies the rights and obligations of each party. A “silent” or “passive” business partner is different from an “active” business partner. An equity business partner or venture capitalist is different from a business consultant. Having a lawyer who can define the role of each party in a contract may avoid future problems.


“How to start a business” is different from “how to build a business.” Critical to building a business is that business’s reputation and goodwill. Trademarks are the link between the consumer and a business. If every auto repair business was called “Joe’s Garage,” consumers would have no way of distinguishing the Joe’s Garage that the next door neighbor loves and the Joe’s Garage that ripped off a relative. A lawyer can not only help an entrepreneur to secure trademark protection so that no other business uses the same name or logo, a lawyer can give an entrepreneur tips on avoiding problems with other business’s trademarks.

Zoning and Licensing

“How to start a business” leads naturally to “where to start a business.” Common entrepreneur mistakes include assuming that everything is legal as long as the landlord does not object. However, there is an entire legal structure that defines what businesses can do, where businesses can do it, and what licenses are required. For example, in certain states, hunting guides and outfitters, audiologists, and unarmed security guards need licenses. Similarly, some state and local governments restrict where a business can feed the homeless, raise chickens, or build a church. A lawyer can assist entrepreneurs with zoning and licensing for their new business.

Taxes and Compliance

A common entrepreneur mistake is to forget that the only things that cannot be avoided are death and taxes. While no business owner should pay more than their fair share of taxes, it is equally true that no business owner should evade taxes. A lawyer can help entrepreneurs to make sure that they only pay the right amount of tax. Moreover, an ongoing relationship with a lawyer can ensure compliance with other local, state, and federal agency regulations, such as fire and building inspections, family leave, workers compensation, unemployment insurance, and many other business regulations.


In researching how to start a business, an entrepreneur should consider the role professionals, like lawyers, can play. Often, hiring a lawyer when starting a business can avoid problems and their associated costs down the road.

Everything You Need to Know About Digital Entrepreneurs

Jun 12, 2019

The digital entrepreneurship industry has significantly grown in the last few years. While Silicon Valley has always been home to ambitious tech entrepreneurs, the Internet has made it possible for anyone to become a business owner. This has been facilitated by the fact that global trade is expanding as new technologies provide a framework for global commerce.

If you are interested in becoming an entrepreneur, then you may be wondering how to get started. So, what are some of the properties of the digital entrepreneur?

1. Ability to Mobilize Resources

Unlike a traditional business owner, a tech entrepreneur can quickly mobilize resources to start and operate a business. Most startups fail to succeed because they do not have sufficient funds to cater to their immediate needs. Tech entrepreneurs know that this is one of the common entrepreneur mistakes they want to avoid if their startups are going to be successful.

2. Find A Mentor For Business Success Tips

While you may fantasize about becoming a self-made entrepreneur, most great business leaders have a trusted mentor. As you seek to launch your business, look for experienced industry leaders who can provide ongoing coaching and entrepreneurship tips. Many business owners find it hard to succeed because they do not have the tips and strategies that are necessary for succeeding in their industry. If you want to be the digital entrepreneur who will have a significant impact on the digital landscape, you need to have some vital entrepreneurship tips. Fortunately, the Internet provides many opportunities for networking and relationship development.

3. The Grit to Start a Business

Remember: not everyone has what it takes to run a successful company. Starting any new business will involve setbacks and drama. If you are the type of person who cannot cope with high levels of stress and disappointment, then you may not have the grit to succeed. Ironically, in order to succeed, you must know how to cope with failure.

4. Public Speaking Ability

Any digital entrepreneur who has the potential to succeed possesses a natural public speaking ability. You may need to regularly present your business plan to investors or potential clients, which you cannot do if you are nervous speaking in front of crowds. Many entrepreneurs also translate their success into a side career as paid international speakers. Fear of public speaking has significant impacts on your income as you will earn 10% less on average than those who do not fear public speaking.

Becoming a digital entrepreneur is a complex process. To learn more, keep reading our tech entrepreneurship blog and other resources. You too can become a digital entrepreneur if you are highly focused and committed.

entrepreneur mistakes

New Entrepreneurs: 4 Beginner Mistakes to Avoid

Jun 10, 2019

Everybody makes mistakes. However, most people don’t hold the fate of a product, brand, or entire company in their hands. Welcome to the world of startups.

Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. Three out of four individuals experience speech anxiety, which can severely diminish your effectiveness as a business owner. After all, it’s up to you to communicate your vision to your team, and often to your customers.

Besides lacking any skill as a public speaker, the following are four common entrepreneur mistakes to avoid as you learn how to start a business.


1. Being a Solution in Search of a Problem

This is one of the most common entrepreneur mistakes. When you’re creating your product and developing your business, it’s imperative to have a customer-first mentality. And when you’re just starting out, that means finding a real problem to solve, and then creating a product to solve that problem.

Most people go about this backwards — they have a product idea, or they discover something they’re uniquely gifted in. Then they go about developing a product based on that idea, all along assuming that people will actually want it.

Sadly, it’s not always the case.

Unless you start with the problem you want to solve, you can’t be sure that the solution you develop is going to really benefit people (and thus be profitable).

So instead of asking yourself, “What am I good at?” or even, “What can I do to help people?” Ask yourself, “What problems are people in my niche experiencing, and how can I solve them at scale?”


2. Going at it Alone

It’s almost a cliche, but it’s true: people thrive and work better with friends. That may be truer in the startup world than anywhere else. This leads us to another of the most common entrepreneur mistakes: trying to go solo.

Of all companies worth over a billion dollars, roughly 85% of them were launched by at least two founders. It’s fairly uncommon for a business to see massive success when it’s driven forward by just one person.v

It’s not fun to think about, but launching and scaling your business to profitability is going to be the hardest thing you’ve ever done. There are going to be days—weeks, even—when all you want to do is quit. Without a cofounder, coach, or at least an accountability partner, you‘ll most likely give up.


3. Never (Really) Getting Started

This is a more elementary mistake, but it’s a very common one among budding entrepreneurs.

Many would-be entrepreneurs fall into the trap of being busy doing nothing—attending seminars, watching lectures, reading books, and taking copious notes, without ever really putting themselves and their ideas out there for the world to see.

Business development is a public process—if you don’t launch a campaign, talk about what you’re working on, and get other eyes on it, you will not have a business.

This is usually a side-effect of fear. Sometimes the antidote is education—you need to learn about your field, and how to manage your own success when it comes. Just as likely, you’ve done enough learning and it’s time for action.


4. Assuming You Have No Real Competitors

Let’s be honest: when you’re a product developer or startup founder, you’re as proud as a new parent. And like a new parent, you’re pretty much convinced that your baby can do no wrong and that no one in the world could possibly replace it.

This assumption is another of the most common entrepreneur mistakes. It’s natural for new founders to feel this way, given the excitement of the startup process. However, it can lead them into believing that their product is so superior to everything else that’s out there, that they have no direct competitors.

In actuality, it’s incredibly unusual for a product or business to have no direct competitors. Unless you’ve invented something absolutely original (hard to do, and even harder to sell), there’s absolutely someone out there with an alternative product that people are already using.

It isn’t always necessary for a product to be ten times better than the competition to be profitable, but it’s still a good goal to shoot for. In any case, you must do your due diligence in finding the companies already serving your target audience, and discovering how you can differentiate yourself and your business.

Common Mistakes Public Speakers Make and How to Avoid Them

Jun 7, 2019


Do you have what it takes to be a great international speaker? Public speaking is a soft skill that entails speaking to an audience to pass along important information. More often than not, it is geared towards pushing the audience to take a specific action following the event. While a lot of people can be good speakers, public speaking entails more than just talking into a microphone.

Public Speaking is More than Delivering Information

Every international public speaker understands that there is more to speaking in public than reading from a piece of paper. For starters, what you say to an audience is essential, but it is not as important as how you say it. For an effective presentation, studies have suggested that 38% of it is your voice, 55% relies on non-verbal communication, and the remaining 7% goes to your content.

Technology has leaped forward, but the components of public speaking that make it effective have hardly changed. For instance, every paid international speaker should capitalize on the first seven seconds of a speech because it is during this short time that listeners decide if they will trust the speaker or not. Here are some of the most common mistakes public speakers make and how to avoid them.

  • Not creating an initial rapport with the listener: A lot of presenters spend most of their time putting together the content of their speech which sometimes keeps them in the information bubble. Instead of establishing opening lines that will help them create rapport with the audience, these speakers simply deliver information in a boring way. Rapport with your listeners is a make-or-break quality to your presentation.The best way to avoid this mistake is to research your audience beforehand. This will enable you to familiarize yourself their goals and their causes, allowing you to find the best way to approach them. Preparing for a speech is like starting a business. A business person avoids entrepreneur mistakes by knowing their customer’s demographics, culture, and expectations. You need to know this information when preparing for your speech if you are to connect with the audience.
  • Not having clear points: Listeners need clear and simple takeaways from your speech, otherwise they won’t perform the necessary action following the event. Modern society has come with a lot of distraction that has shortened our attention span. An effective way to deter a loss of interest is to have short, clear points that your audience can apply straight away in their lives. Also, don’t bombard them with tons of information that can make them feel overwhelmed. Keep your main points between three and five punchy points and pad these bits of information with more detail. Make it easy for your audience to follow you from one point to another, which creates flow and keeps them engaged.
  • Don’t be dependent on visual aids: Every public speaker needs to use visual aids at some point in their presentation, but you should not overload the audience with power points. Avoid reading from your presentation and filling it with tons of text, otherwise, you will distract your audience. It’s vital that you keep their attention on you as much as possible. To be an effective speaker, you need to keep eye contact and draw energy from them through crowd interactions. Look for signs of interest, so you know when audience attention is waning. You will elicit a hunger in the people watching you, and hit emotional triggers better when you pay attention to your audience.
  • Not getting the right timing: An international speaker is like a comedian. Both must get the timing right to present information that people will assimilate. As an international speaker, you should not go beyond the allotted time, and you should form the habit of timing your statements to keep them exciting and long enough. Break up your presentation with stories, jokes, and crowd interaction to make your presentation dynamic.

Entrepreneur tips for public speakers say that you should have a plan B for every presentation you make. If things start going south, you will be prepared. When you want to become a better international speaker, rely on the help of Rafferty Pendery to become a professional.