We’ve had another busy week at ReputationManagement.com, and our CEO, Bill Fish, has been featured as an expert in several articles. He shared strategies for starting a business without quitting your day job, avoiding etiquette snafus at work, questions to ask a potential employer, and how you can keep your employees happy.
Starting a Business Without Quitting Your Day Job
We’ve all heard the saying, “don’t quit your day job.” And while it’s usually said as a dig at a person’s skill level, it’s often a good idea for entrepreneurs, as maintaining regular employment can provide stability while launching a business.
Time Magazine asked how entrepreneurs can start a business without quitting their day job, and Bill shared how he maximized his time while traveling for business:
Make the most of business travel. If you work long hours at your day job, it may be hard to squeeze in time to work on your startup when you finally get home. Cincinnati entrepreneur Bill Fish found a solution when he co-founded an online marketing company, Text Link Ads (now known as Matomy SEO) in 2001. At the time, he was spending every other week in Austin or Houston, Texas, for his job and had down time in the evenings to devote to his startup. “I was able to work on my business the vast majority of the time while I was traveling,” he says. “I was away from my fiancé and didn’t have anything else to do.”
The time he put in gave the company a running start, and the company grew to the point it was acquired by a private equity firm in 2006. Fish opted to stay on to run the company, and by the time he left in 2012, he says it hit $25M in annual revenue. Since then, he has moved on to another startup, ReputationManagement.com, an online guide where he is co-founder.
On the Job Etiquette Breaches to Avoid
There are too many potential etiquette snafus at work than we can list here: napping on the job, gossiping, failing to respond to communications, being late or altogether missing meetings, or taking credit for a colleague’s work. TheStreet.com asked CEOs to share some of the worst offenses of etiquette they’ve seen at work, and Bill had a doozy to share — an employee who was a bit overzealous with their corporate credit card:
“I once dealt with a sales manager who had their own corporate credit card,” says Bill Fish, the founder of Cincinnati-based ReputationManagement.com. “We didn’t look at it all too closely, but peeked in every so often to find a $700 charge to a salon, $600 at Verizon, and three meals over $500 all in the same day while at a conference.”
“What was worse was that none of the staff saw the manager at the conference for even a minute on the day in question,” Fish says.
That employee managed to stay on the job, but the damage was done.
“Needless to say, the respect diminished from that point forward,” Fish says.
Questions You Should Ask a Potential Employer
In every job interview, it’s important to remember that it’s not just the employer that should be asking questions: job seekers should have questions of their own. Queries about the qualities expected for the job, details about work hours and expectations, why the position is available, and more can all be excellent resources for learning more about the position and the company while showing your interest and improving your rapport.
Recruiter.com asked employers to highlight the most important questions that every job seeker should ask during an interview. Bill shared two very important questions that show you’re interested in the job and eager to fill the position:
“What is the time frame for filling this position?,” and
“When should I expect to hear back from you?
Both of these questions not only show your interest, they can help you gauge the interest and needs of the employer. They also give you a date you can out in your calendar to follow up with the employer if they haven’t reached out to you yet.
How to Keep Employees Happy
A happy workforce is essential to the health of any organization and should be a priority for all business leaders. Business News Daily asked business owners and other experts for their best advice on keeping employees happy. They shared advice including giving employees autonomy, challenging them, engaging with them, and supporting their ideas. Bill pointed out that it’s also important to acknowledge their accomplishments:
People love to be respected and acknowledged when they do something well. I like to have a weekly meeting/conference call with the whole team and mention items that took place the prior week, and mention some staff by name with their accomplishments.