Bulletin Board: Start your own company with the help of entrepreneurs
Apr 04,2008 00:00 by Amy_Winter

If you want to run your own business but don't know where to begin, perfectbusiness.com is your answer.

Helping entrepreneurs launch their dream company, the site provides tools like articles, videos and business listings. Co-founders Mark Verge and Dan Bliss want to provide support for new entrepreneurs.

"It is a community of entrepreneurs that help each other," says Bliss. "The site provides a support system."

Bliss refers to the site as the "MySpace for entrepreneurs" when it comes to networking. Join a specific club that fits your area of interest. The site features several clubs including "Buying a Business or Franchise," "Managing Your Business," or "Financing Your Business." Each club has a forum where users can post questions or comments, according to Bliss. Users can also ask an expert for assistance or view profiles of other members.

"It's amazing how many investors, entrepreneurs, universities, small-business organizations and experts have generously donated time in support of our mission," says Bliss. "We are all working together to make big things happen."

Watch a video interview featuring distinguished entrepreneurs, such as Joe Coulombe, the founder of Trader Joe's or Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo's Fish Taco, to hear tips and guidance. Read through articles written by professionals who have experienced the process of starting a business. Choose from topics like business startup, business plan or finding your niche. View the seven keys to success: passion, clarity, service, team, marketing, capital and goodwill.

After talking to experts and viewing the information center, it is time to visit the marketplace and pitch center. Bliss refers to the marketplace as the classifieds for businesses. Users can purchase businesses or lease real estate. Raise funds in the pitch center - your business proposal will be seen by investors and entrepreneurs.

"We proactively match business buyers with sellers and investors with startups seeking capital," says Bliss. "Our site will not only help individuals achieve their goals, it will also stimulate the economy by generating new jobs that didn't exist yesterday."

Review the "six steps to launch" tool once you have chosen a business and obtained financing. Bliss says the six steps act as an interactive checklist; a progress bar informs you of the company's advancement and your completed tasks.

Members of perfectbusiness.com aren't limited to only entrepreneurs. Investors looking to buy businesses, sellers wanting to sell services or companies, or experts willing to write articles and provide advice are all welcome. Bliss says the site is free to join and easy to create a profile.

"Helping people start new businesses is something we are very passionate about," says Verge. "It's the American dream."

For more information, visit www.perfectbusiness.com.

GIVE THANKS TO ADMINISTRATIVE TEAM

The administrative staff should be recognized for taking on more roles and serving as an important part of the company. Seventy-three percent surveyed by OfficeTeam, a staffing service that questioned 150 senior executives, say the responsibilities for administrative professionals have increased in the last five years. Only 13 percent of respondents feel the duties have decreased.

"Efficiencies created by technological advancements have allowed administrative assistants to take on a wider range of tasks, including managing budgets, negotiating vendor contracts, overseeing projects and maintaining Web sites," says Dave Willmer, executive director.

Fifty-seven percent of executives say an administrative assistant has more career options than five years ago. Twenty-five percent of respondents say the occupation opportunities are the same, while only 17 percent feel it is less likely to find more career choices. Two percent of executives aren't sure.

OfficeTeam provides ideas to honor the support staff during Administrative Professionals Week from April 20 to April 26:

- Write a thank-you note. Express appreciation for the assistant's achievements.

- Take him or her to lunch.

- Plan a party to honor all the administrative staff.

- Provide ongoing educational options. Encourage or pay for your administrative professionals to attend development conferences.

"Administrative assistants can achieve seniority within their role or profession, or leverage their specialized skill sets to obtain supervisory positions in administration, human resources or other departments," says Willmer.

For more information, visit www.officeteam.com.

E-mail Amy Winter or write to P.O. Box 120190, San Diego, CA 92112.

© Copley News Service