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Welcome to the WISE newsletter, a program of
The Falcone Center for Entrepreneurship at Syracuse University

Friday, July 29, 2005

Forms of Business Ownership

The Small Business Administration's Online Women's Business Center has a page that defines the various forms of busines ownership along with their pros and cons. What are the different forms of partnership? What's the advantage of sole proprietorship? How does a corporation differ from a limited liability company? Check this site to find out!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Article: The conundrum of the glass ceiling

The glass ceiling still exists. How pervasive is it and why? This article from the Economist tackles the question and looks at examples (good and bad) from around the world. It is an article worth reading, then passing along to others. Perhaps it will prompt ideas of what we can do to ensure that the ceiling does shatter.

Would you like to do business with women business owners?

If your answer is "yes", check out the growing directory of women-owned businesses developed by the Falcone Center and WISE. The directory is searchable by keyword, business type, location and more.

Are you a woman business owner? If "yes", make sure that your business is in the directory. Let's build this directory so it is easy for women to find women-owned businesses to work with.

WISE 2006 - save the date

The fourth annual symposium on women and entrepreneurship -- WISE: Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship -- will be held on April 11, 2006 in the OnCenter in Syracuse, NY. Planning for the fourth symposium (conference) is underway, but to get a feel for what the conference is like, visit the WISE web site.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Article: Helping Hands for Women's Startups

BusinessWeek has an article on the Women's Business Centers which were begun in 1988. The article include interviews with women who have used them. A list of Women's Business Centers (by state) is available here. If a center is not in your region, call the closest one and ask how they might work with you.


The U.S. government relaunched a web site this year to support women entrepreneurs. The site is called Women-21.gov. First launched in 2004, the site offers "key resources, targeted information, registration for online programs, and networking opportunities to help you and your business reach their maximum potential." The site includes a host of tools and tips, as well as helpful articles.

Take a moment to check out the site and explore it. Who knows, you might find just the right tip to help you at this time!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Can we talk?

How do you like to communicate with your customers? In person? By telephone? Through e-mail? On instant messenger (IM)? Using regular (paper) mail? Now...how do your customers like to communicate with you? Do you both like to use the same communication methods?

There are a variety of choices these days for how we can communicate with each other. As these choices have emerged, how we prefer to communicate has changed. Frequently, however, we don't tell people how we like to communicate with those around us, nor do we ask others what their preferred methods are.

As you interact with your customers, tell them the best ways of contacting you and when. For example, are you only available by telephone at certain times during the day? Does e-mail reach you faster than a telephone call? Then ask what communication methods they use and they best way (and time) of getting in contact with them. Exchanging this information now will help you keep the lines of communication open in the long run.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Article: Kotler’s Top Five Marketing Tips

As the blog posting says, "Nothing revolutionary here...just simple, sound, and super-smart marketing thinking." The full article on CNN gives five tips from Philip Kotler who has written 35 books on marketing and has consultant with many top corporations. Of particular interest is #5: make it an experience. Perhaps we should say make it a positive experience. Kotler, and others, point to Starbucks where it's not just about the coffee; it is about the experience of being at a Starbucks.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Notes & Quotes: Wendy Newmeyer

Wendy Newmeyer of Maine Balsam Fir Products, Inc. provided a view of a start-up business like none other. She and her husband moved from New Jersey to Main in the late 1970's in order to try living off the land. Over time they began making products -- pillows, draft stoppers, etc. -- from parts of balsam trees that were considered junk. Maine Balsam Fir Products was founded in 1983 and sells products to customers all across the U.S. Newmeyer employs seven people, plus her husband, and they hand make over 100,000 items in a year.

Wendy Newmeyer shared with the audience at the WISE conference the top ten things she would have done differently, if she had it to do all over again. Her top ten are:
  1. Never hire friends, family members, or close-by neighbors.
  2. Incorporate sooner.
  3. Hire a payroll service earlier.
  4. Hire a lawyer and accountant who work as "partners" rather than "service providers."
  5. Use a better bookkeeping system earlier.
  6. Develop a better personal relationship with a local banker.
  7. Join more trade groups (e.g., Chamber of Commerce).
  8. Invest some time exploring what kind of help isavailable from other organizations (e.g., SCORE).
  9. Clearly define goals, production capabilities, and expectations so that her family's needs and her own lifestyle needs could be coordinated with the other things that occur.
  10. Relocate the business rather away from her home and build a space designed for the process, as well as for growth.
She also listed several other things, beyond her top ten, including spending more time enjoying the reasons that they moved to Maine in the first place.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Event: Women's Small Business Night

What: Women's Small Business Night
When: Thursday, August 11, 2005
Where: Alliance Bank Stadium, Hank Sauer Room

Schedule of Events:

4:00 p.m. Welcome from the SkyChiefs followed by presentation from Paychex, Alliance Bank, SBA and the Women's Business Center
5:30 p.m. Dinner and Networking
7:00 p.m. Baseball Game

With registration, receive three guest passes for family or friends to join you at the game.

RSVP by August 1 to Shannon Matthews, Tel: 475-7583

Note: Attire is casual.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Syracuse Chamber -- free six-month memberships

The Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce is giving away two (2) 6-month chamber memberships to deserving women-owned businesses in Central New York. The 6-month membership may be renewed for another 6-month membership if the member has been an active participant in the Chamber.

To apply for one of these, you must agree to following membership guidelines and answer the following application questions. The applications should be submitted by August 31, 2005 to sltayl03@syr.edu with the subject "Chamber Membership Application."

Membership Guidlines:
  • Must actively and frequently attend the Chamber functions.
  • Must agree to be a member of one of the Chamber committees.
Application Questions:
Name ____________________
Business ____________________
Address ____________________
Phone number ____________________
E-mail ____________________
Web site ____________________
# of employees ____________________
In what year was your company founded? ________
Is the majority owner of the business a woman? ________
  1. Why are you applying for one of these 6-month Chamber memberships?
  2. How do you plan to use this Chamber membership to the benefit of your business?
  3. Have you participated in any Chamber functions in the past 2 years? If so, which ones?
  4. How do you plan to grow your business in the next 5 years?