Simplify Your Life, Improve Your Character

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What do others say about your character? Are you looking for ways to improve the essence of your being? According to Miguel Ruiz, there are four simple principles that you can consider to help you to improve your character.

In his book, The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book) you will learn the simplistic and profound ways to a path for wellness and well-being.  It is through the choices that you make and the decisions that you enforce that determines your outcome. Everything that we do stems from our upbringing and from there we began to weave and bob through life and where we land is contingent upon our decisions and choices. If you do not like where you’re planted, do things differently. The Four Agreements offers some solutions.

Learn how you can apply Miguel’s four simple agreements of: Be Impeccable With Your Word, Don’t Take Anything Personal, Don’t Make Assumptions and Always Do Your Best to create a  paradigm shift to a new and improved you. It may not seem like it is this simple but in actuality it really is.  Here’s to a new you, salute!

B.E.S.T. Publishing (A Division of Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
bestpublishing@jabezenterprisegroup.com

Making Billions the Simple Way

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Warren Buffett is the person to follow not only if you are seeking intellectual ways to perform trade and stock pickings but in the practical way that he lives his life. No, he isn’t perfect, but there is a method to his madness. Despite the fact that he is a multi-billionaire with stakes in several companies from See’s Candy and Johnson & Johnson to the Coca-Cola Company he has a strategy that’s actually simple.

In The Warren Buffett Way by Robert G. Hagstrom, you will learn the characteristics behind the investments as displayed in Chapter Four: Common Stock Purchases: Nine Case Studies.  I have been a fan of Buffett for decades and have read several books about him, and each time I come away with something different about him. In this book, you will learn the various ways in how Buffett processes his investments, as well as learning about his principles and practices.

From his childhood to his mentoring relationships, everything that he has encountered has been instrumental in the choices that have made about his success as displayed in Chapter Two: The Education of Warren  Buffett. You will learn from this book that it takes practice to acquire not only the financial gain that Buffett is known for but the most important thing is to fully understand the industry in which you have an interest in investing in. Did you know that your knowledge of industry commodities will help you to obtain a more sound investment decision?

While everyone may not obtain the same financial gain as Buffett, it is always a great practice to understand the man behind this simple principle as shown in Chapter Six: The Psychology of Investing. As Buffett states “patience is the key.” As you will see in Chapter Eight: The World’s Greatest Investor, Buffet states it simply “How I got here is pretty simple in my case. It is not IQ; I’m sure that you will be glad to hear. The big thing is rationality…..”

In Buffett’s Tenets: Business, Management, Financial and Markets you will be taught the various aspects of the decision-making process. As an added feature watch the movie, Becoming Warren Buffet, where you will learn not only about the man and his billions. Also, you will learn about his wife, Susan, who died in 2004 but has left an indelible mark on who he is today.

B.E.S.T. Publishing (A Division of Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
bestpublishing@jabezenterprisegroup.com

What You Say?

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Am I the only one whose child gets embarrassed when I say or do certain things? How did your children feel about what you said or did as they were growing up? Funny, how our children only see us as parents but refuse to acknowledge us as human beings as well.  Put your seat belt on and get ready for a barrel of laughs, and belly aches as you read Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern. If my daughter knew that there was an audience for my type of sayings despite how off the cuff it may have seemed to her, she would have been able to beat Halpern to the punch by creating her own book.

Halpern’s dad is the typical dad of his time where he holds no punches on what he believes or has to say about life, relationships and the issues that Halpern faced on a daily basis from his childhood to life as an adult. Halpern’s dad choice of profanity helps to bring the points home. Let me give you a little taste of the delectable delicacies that you will find in this book (without the expletive words):

  • Listen, I don’t give a f*** if you forget my birthday. I don’t need people reminding me I’m closer to death. But your mom, she still enjoys counting them down, so cancel your f**** plans and drive down here for her birthday day….
  • Pick your furniture like you pick a wife, it should make you feel comfortable and look nice, but not so nice that if someone walks past it they want to steal it.

While I am not a fan of profanity, I too lived in this world of this unique language. And to read a book that embraces this form of speaking allows me to relive my childhood because I too, had a father who spoke with such eloquence which I adopted as well for a season as a parent.  Regardless, you will continue to laugh while enjoying this compact and easy to read book. If you grew up with parents of this era or was this type of parent yourself, you are in for a treat. Enjoy!

B.E.S.T. Publishing (A Division of Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
bestpublishing@jabezenterprisegroup.com

What Does Your Destiny Hold?

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What does your destiny hold? Are you walking in or towards your calling? The Greatest Salesman In The World by Og Mandino is a classical story about life and purpose. The lives that we live, the talents that we possess and the wealth that we acquire is not only for ourselves but the betterment of the world. In this compelling story, Hafid tells us how.  Hafid is a man of great wealth. Every year he has his chief bookkeeper, Erasmus, to yearly give half of his profits to the poor. Since the loss of his love, Lisha, Hafid has begun to see life differently. He desired only to maintain enough money to live life comfortably but as the years progressed, Hafid’s willingness to divest his wealth increased.

One day Hafid revealed a secret to Erasmus about his success which he placed directly on a set of scrolls that he had been keeping privately in a chest. Most people live on this earth vicariously walking to and fro while others see that there’s more to life than themselves and that of those around them. How do you look at your life? Make sure that it is a part of the destiny that you were called to?

B.E.S.T. Publishing (A Division of Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
bestpublishing@jabezenterprisegroup.com

Let’s Walk Into Another World

 

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Photo Courtesy: Aldwyn Gallery

 

Books can be so entertaining that it can take you to another world. Lately, I have been enjoying the world of mystery, suspense, and intrigue. Because of time constraints, I have been unable to read a book physically, so I had to resort to listening to audiobooks.

In my quest to dabble in the audiobook world and to seek out some great choices I decided on a few that you too may enjoy. Let’s explore two of them. One of them you will find is over seven years old while the other one is relatively new, but they are so entertaining that you would not want to stop reading or listening to them.

I will provide you with an overview to not spoil the plot of the story. First, is The Associate by John Grisham (2009), a story of suspense and intrigue about Kyle McAvoy, a young attorney. In Kyle’s world, he goes through the experiences of living the life and wonders of becoming an attorney but what he sees behind the scenes puzzles him.

What he realizes is that his hourly salary, the tireless charades of clients’ paperwork and watching his co-workers spend more than they make just to look the part is all created to become a part of the illusion in the life of an attorney. He is living the dream. He realized that he had made it, but all that glitters is not gold.

His life changes when one day his past catches up with him. He is being asked to expose the secrets behind the firm that he’s working with? Will Kyle risk what he has worked so hard for or will he play along as if nothing has happened?

Next, Dangerous Games by Daniel Steele (2017), a story of high-risks, and mystery of working behind the scenes in the media industry. With TV correspondent, Alix Phillips, and Ex-Navy SEAL turned cameraman, Ben Chapman, working together, no story is safe. Alix has a passion for turn over every stone with Ben close behind.

As they travel abroad to cover stories that are dangerous either from riots or gunshots they always come back with excellent results. Alix wanted to find out more about Tony Clark, Vice-President of the United States. As she begins to turn over several stones, she discovers that Vice-President Clark wears different faces.

On the outside Vice-President Clark seemed to be confident and appears to be a man in charge yet in his private life, Clark is a man of corruption, deception, and cunny. No one knew, not even the President of the United States, that Vice-President Clark would do whatever it takes to become the next President. As Alix began to research the various aspects of the story concerning Vice-President Clark, she begins to uncover something so sinister that her life and those around her are at risk. Will this make Alix cease continuing the story or will she do what she does best tell the truth and to give the story the exposure that it needs?

B.E.S.T. Publishing (A Division of Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
bestpublishing@jabezenterprisegroup.com

 

IS IT A TAX REFORM OR TAX CUT?

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In today’s climate, it is so difficult to understand what to do and who to trust. The Republicans say this and the Democrats want that but what does it all mean to us as small business owners? I will roll out some of the conversations that are circulating around not only during the discussions with the industry experts that I encountered during my Washington, D.C. trip but what others are saying including the media.

With the information that you will receive from this article, you will be able to make an educated decision as a business owner. To start off the conversation let’s consider what Donald Marron, Economic Policy Initiatives Institute Fellow & Director, Urban Institute stated during the Ensuring Tax Reform Promotes Small Business Success panel discussion, “Is It Spinach or Ice Cream? Ice Cream is the soft sale in what we are hearing and seeing but in actuality, we are receiving and eating spinach. For most of us, spinach represents a food that we dislike, in this case, spinach displays what is truly going on.

So here we go pertaining to the proposed tax policy. The panel that Marron was a part of were full of financial, policy and tax industry experts, that provided us with a wealth of information. So the question really is, is it a tax reform or tax cut? The answers depend upon who you are asking.

Let’s look at a few tax issues that are being proposed and circulating:

  • Doubling the standard deductions
  • Tax credits for child dependent families, as well as, nondependent
  • Reduction of corporate taxes
  • New tax rate for pass-through taxes for small businesses

Here is how it rolls out according to the panelists:

The purpose of taxes is to provide the economic support that the Country needs to fund itself primarily for the well-being of the various social programs that our Country and its people need from transportation, Social Security and health care to education. Mark Mazur, Robert C. Pozen Director,  Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, indicates that while the tax system worked in the 50s and 60s, in its current state it isn’t. Due to the economic shift that we are and have been experiencing for decades, our system needs some massaging.

The last tax reform was allegedly in 1986. According to @RepTomEmmer “Last time we had major tax reform, I was rocking the flannel look most days. Safe to say we need tax reform now: GOP Tax Reform https://fairandsimple.gop/.”

As a part of the changes, the state and local tax deductions will be eliminated but the standard deductions will be doubled. While this may be great for some states the states that will be hardest hit will be California and New York. One of the panelists, CPA Anne Zimmerman, Zimmerman & Co CPAs, Inc. ran one of President Trump’s prior year taxes and indicated that according to the new proposed tax laws if passed, he and the upper echelon will subsequently be paying nothing in taxes and instead will be gaining by a windfall.

While Trump initially thought that he would be able to immediately get his proposed tax bill passed, he is now weighing his options and hopefully, he will begin to see the error of his ways. Any tax bill being proposed should be for the people especially for those that voted for him based upon his promise to Make America Great Again. Is this new tax proposal Spinach or the Ice Cream?

Research, read and digest all of the information that you can to find and determine for yourself if this proposed tax bill will either Make America Great Again or will instead cripple us and take us back to the Stone Ages. Here are some suggestions to consider including those of the panelists:

  • Wage credit – Ryan Abraham, Business & International Senior Tax Counsel, U.S. Senate Finance Committee
  • Lower loopholes for corporations
  • Offer a proposal of solutions
  • Talk about the specific issues while focusing on what is not working and massage what is working
  • Remove our vs their conversations because taxes will affect us all either directly or indirectly when it comes to purchasing power. If people are being taxed too much they will not have the economic capital for purchases. This is what causes a recession/depression to occur.

As a small business owner you must continue to make your voice heard and to stay up to date on small business issues reach out to these organizations and your Senators now:

So is this a tax reform or tax cut? It all depends on who you ask. What are your thoughts?

I thank you and appreciate the opportunity that you have afforded me to represent you once again. I will continue the fight to assure that the voices, needs, and concerns for the small businesses are being heard. If you have a concern or issue that you would like for me to talk about on your behalf within the near future please feel free to contact me.

“Diversity and inclusion are not only for employees, it’s for business owners also.  Become a part of the conversation.” Vernita Naylor

Blessings and keep on dreaming…..

Vernita Naylor
Founder/Owner, Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)
Small Business Ambassador Since 2001
services@jabezenterprisegroup.com
https://jabezenterprisegroup.com/

 

Don’t Get On the Disqualified List

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In the previous article, Be Prepared to Win the Bid, we talked about some of the hiccups that business owners run across when submitting a bid. A lot of companies spend time on making their bid proposal look good visually but don’t fully understand that following the instructions as outlined in the bid proposal is key. We will talk more about this specific topic a little later.

It must be understood that talent is not enough. You must convince the buying agency that you are capable, competent and worthy of winning the bid. It is your job to convince the buying agency that you are the best of the best.

How you do this is by how you present yourself on paper during the bidding process. In your bid, you are letting the buying agency know who you are, what you can do, how you will do it, in what fashion it will get done, and then why should they choose you over anyone else. It is your goal to make your bid speak volumes to the buying agency in order to win the bid.

In the previous article, you were provided with a few quick and easy step that you can take to help in winning the bid. Now we will explore some factors that go into disqualifying you as a potential bidder. As it was recently discussed a lot of companies spend time on making their bid proposal look good visually but don’t fully understand that following the instructions as outlined in the bid proposal is key.

Let’s explore why this is important using the scenario below:

Bid requests

  • Submit all numerical data in an excel spreadsheet;
  • Bids must be sent to 12345 Samuel Circle, 3rd Floor, Essex Room, Duluth, GA 30097 on Friday, April 10 by 10 am;
  • Proposal must be tabbed as specified under Clause F – Markings and Packaging; and
  • All written content must be in Arial 12pt Font double-spaced.

You submit

  • All numerical data submitted in an excel spreadsheet;
  • Your bid arrives at 12345 Samuel Circle, 3rd Floor, Essex Room, Duluth, GA 30097 on Friday, April 10 by 10:10 am;
  • Proposal tabbed partially as required under Clause F – Markings and Packaging; and
  • The written content was submitted in Times New Roman 12pt Font 1.5 spacing.

You provided your variations to the proposal because you believed that it would look visually better this way and incorporated a little creativity. It is these simple variations that can cause your bid to be considered unfavorable and you become a disqualified offeror.  Also, you bid did not arrive on time, it is your job to do what it takes to assure that it’s delivered as requested.

If you do not follow these simple directions you are wasting your time submitting a bid. Some companies spend a lot of time and effort on their marketing piece, which does help, but initially, it is the content that catches the eyes of the receiver. By paying close attention to what the bid requests are I guarantee that you will be on your way to winning the bids within the near future.

Connect with us at Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup), @JEGroupBiz, LinkedIn, and Facebook to see what we are doing next, or to become a part of The What’s Next Effect (The WNE). Or to become a part of the diversity and inclusion conversation pick up your copy of Get the Cheese, Avoid the Traps: An Interactive Guide to Government Contracting.

Vernita Naylor
Published Author, Speaker, Founder/Owner Jabez Enterprise Group (JEGroup)

“Always do your best and be transparent in how you conduct business.” Vernita Naylor