Business Development & Conflict Resolution

We assist individuals with starting their own businesses because small business is key to economic independence and community sustainability.

Archive for the month “November, 2014”

How to Succeed in Business: Ensure to have a Non-Disclosure Agreement!

Now that you have set-up the partnership with your new partner(s) and drafted up the partnership agreement. It is time to begin business, so you think. But, you must ensure that along with the partnership agreement that you do another agreement to protect every aspect of your business. You not only have to protect your personal assets from potential liability, but you must also protect your business ideas, marketing brand, and marketing ideas. The best way to protect your ideas and brands is by way of a Non-Disclosure Agreement.

What is a Non-Disclosure Agreement?

What are other names for Non-Disclosure Agreements?

  • NDA
  • Confidentiality Agreement
  • Confidential Disclosure Agreement
  • Proprietary Disclosure Agreement

What are the main types of Non-Disclosure Agreements?

  • Unilateral Non-Disclosure Agreement: where a business will share certain data or information regarding the business with a third party like an independent contractor. The agreement ensures that the independent contractor does not steal any important viable information from the business. This agreement ensures that the independent contractor does not take important data or information of the business and pass along to one’s competition. This type of NDA is also used when a company is being sold to another company and allows the seller to share certain information with potential buyers.
  • Mutual Non-Disclosure Agreement: These types of NDA are normally involved when two businesses want to work together by way of a joint venture. These agreement allows the two companies to continue to work together without the fear of losing propriety information with respect to each other’s business. This ensures that each business understands that they cannot steal each other’s propriety information.

What are the main components of the Non-Disclosure Agreement?

  • Information to be protected: Provide specifics on what data and information of one’s business will be protected. This sets the rules and guidelines of what information shall be protected and what information shall be shared.
  • Details on the time frame of the NDA: The agreement should set-up how long it shall last. Also, states how long the information and data shall be privileged and confidential. The agreement can last for an indefinite period of time. Normally, last no more than 10 years.
  • Details regarding what will happen if there is a breach of the NDA: The agreement should provide information on what will happen if the NDA is breached and what damages will be collected. It should also state whether or not arbitration/mediation will be used before one can sue in court.

It is advisable to have an attorney or business consultant assist one with the drafting of Non-Disclosure Agreement. Also, good to have an attorney review the Non-Disclosure Agreement before signing one. A Non-Disclosure Agreement will protect one’s propriety information when doing business with others.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

How to Succeed in Business: Ensure that Every Partnership Agreement is in Writing!

As a small business owner, there will come times when you will agree to do or go into business with others. During these times, you will build a strong business relationship with another business owner. With both of your combined resources, you will be able to get more work, increase your clientele, increase your revenue, and increase exposure to both of your businesses. The most common form of business relationships is a partnership.

What does a partnership entail?

  • Two or more people own the business equally.
  • Two or more people share ownership of the business together.
  • All partners of the business contribute to all aspects of running it like labor, skill, money, or property.
  • Also, each partner shares in the profit and loss of the business.
  • Each partner shares equally in the decision-making process of the business.

Any business entity that one decides to set-up or enter into regarding their small business should be in writing. Regarding potential partnerships with other business owners, it is good to set-up the business in writing by way of a partnership agreement.

What should a partnership agreement include?

  • Before put anything into writing, all parties involved should have a discussion of how the partnership will be set-up and what role each partner will play in the business.
  • The agreement should be drafted by the partners with the help of the following parties:
  1. Attorney- to address any potential legal issues.
  2. Accountant- to address any possible financial and tax issues.
  3. Bank Representative- to address any potential banking issues.
  • The agreement should detail how future business decisions will be made.
  • Should include information on how partners will split dividends, profits, and losses.
  • The agreement will detail how disputes among partners will be decided.
  • The agreement should detail how to deal with change of ownership like new partners or buy out current partners.
  • The agreement will provide conditions on how to dissolve the partnership.

What are the different types of partnerships?

  • General Partnerships assume that profits, liability and management duties are divided equally among partners. If you opt for an unequal distribution, the percentages assigned to each partner must be documented in the partnership agreement.
  • Limited Partnerships (also known as a partnership with limited liability) are more complex than general partnerships. Limited partnerships allow partners to have limited liability as well as limited input with management decisions. These limits depend on the extent of each partner’s investment percentage. Limited partnerships are attractive to investors of short-term projects.
  • Joint Ventures act as general partnership, but for only a limited period of time or for a single project. Partners in a joint venture can be recognized as an ongoing partnership if they continue the venture, but they must file as such.

Source: http://www.sba.gov/content/partnership

How to form a partnership?

  • Ensure that all parties involved draft up a partnership agreement.
  • Each party must ensure that they have the agreement reviewed by an attorney.
  • Each partner must ensure that they understand all the terms of the partnership agreement.
  • Ensure that the partnership is registered as a legal company with the local state in the Secretary of State Office.
  • Must ensure that the partnership follows all the federal, state, and local laws regarding operations and tax issues.
  • The partnership has to be registered with the IRS for tax purposes.
  • Each partner must ensure that they have an accountant explain the tax consequences of the partnership.

When forming a partnership, just be very careful and wise when making the decision to do so.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

 


 

How to Succeed in Business: Ensure to Have Everything in Writing!

As a business consultant, I assist individuals with starting and setting up their own businesses. One common problem that I have discovered among small business owners is failure to put everything into writing. Many business owners have the old common belief “my word is my bond.” Many small business owners will make business deals with just a handshake without putting the deal in writing. It was time in life when people would keep their word and do what they said they would do. But, in the 21st Century, that is no longer the case because many business deals go wrong because of misunderstandings and lack of communication. What a person says may mean one thing to them and may mean another thing to another person. With my clients, I always advise them to ensure that every business deal is in writing to protect their interests and the interests of the other party.

Here are a few reasons why it is important to get all business deals in writing:

  • The written contract will spell out the terms of the agreement.
  • The contract will ensure that there are no misunderstandings to the terms of the deal.
  • The written contract will ensure that all parties involved in the business deal are satisfied.
  • The written agreement will help to avoid unnecessary court litigation.
  • The written contract will ensure that the business deal goes smoothly without a hitch.

It is always advisable to have every business deal or business transaction in writing to protect yourself, your business, personal assets, and business assets. Sometimes not having contracts in writing can cause unnecessary stress and wreak havoc on one’s business and personal life. So, my advice to small business owners is ensure to have every business deal, business transaction, and business contract in writing. This will ensure that your business avoids unnecessary court costs, loss of revenue, loss of customers, and loss of valuable time.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

How to Succeed, True Friendships II

Proverbs 17:17, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”

What does it mean to be a “true friend”?

  • Loyalty;
  • Commitment;
  • Unconditional love;
  • Acceptance;
  • Can be yourself; and
  • Always have faith in what you do.

It is better to have one good friend (quality) over having many acquaintances (quantity). A good friend is with you through “thick and thin”. A true friend will have your back when no one else does. During biblical times, friends would enter into a covenant by exchanging a “shoe” and a “sword”. The “shoe” stood for “I will go wherever you go and I will stand with you.” The “sword” stood for “I will fight for you and give up my life for you.”

I would rather have one “true friend” who is there for me no matter the circumstances, then many acquaintances who only want me for what I can give them.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

How to Succeed: True Friendships!

Proverbs 18:24, “A man that has friends must show himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.” True friendship is when two people are willing to give a little of themselves to the other individual. The level of friendship a person gets is based on the level of friendship they give in return.

The characteristics of a “good friendship” are:

  • Commitment;
  • Sacrifice;
  • Time; and
  • Energy.

Many people are not willing to give these characteristics to a “true friendship”. The main reason for this is that many people don’t feel comfortable letting others into their “private space”. Many people are “relationally impaired” which means it is hard for them to make and build “true friendships”.

Here are some truths about people who are afraid of building and growing “true friendships”:

  • Two relationally impaired people cannot help each other solve their problems. They will make the problems worst.
  • People in the fast lane of success only build friendships with people who can offer them something. Many people only want you in their life if you can provide them with something that is valuable to them.
  • When one becomes less needy, people are more willing to become your friend. Some people have issues of their own and do not want to resolve the issues or problems of someone else.

Here are a few ways to make yourself more accessible to build “strong friendships”:

  • Spend more time reading the Bible and praying to get a better understanding of God. If you let God take lead in your life, He will ensure to bring the right people into your life who will add value to it, and you in turn, will add value to their life.
  • Let God be the one to tell you what you are worth and who you are. You do not need anyone to let you know what your self-worth is.
  • Spending quality time with God will make you whole spiritually and emotionally. A friendship with God is the best thing to have.
  • Spending time with God will cause you to enjoy your own company, in turn, you will be able to offer more to others. Sometimes spending quality time with yourself is the best medicine.

 

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

 

                

How to Succeed: Words or Action?

1 John 3:18, “My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” Sometimes actions speak louder than words. Jesus expects us to treat each other with love and kindness. When you care for someone else, you are showing Jesus that you love Him. Matthew 25:35, “I was hungry….you gave me something to eat….I was stranger….you invited me in.”

We must care about people’s spiritual needs, as well as, their practical needs. No one can understand God’s love for them, if they are homeless or hungry. We must learn to show others how much God loves them based on our actions. We should provide individuals with their practical needs like food, shelter, and clothing because that is what Jesus expects us to do. Providing someone with a hot meal or warm place to sleep speaks volumes as to how much God loves them. Actions speak louder than words when telling others about God.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

How to Succeed: Control Your Mind! (Part II)

Ep. 2:10, “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.” 2 Cor. 10:5, “Fight to capture every thought until it acknowledges the authority of Christ.” It is best to capture your thoughts and feelings before they capture you. Sometimes it is wise to think before you speak. Sometimes being silent speaks volumes to others. We must learn to not allow negative thoughts to turn into negative speak.

Should submit your thoughts to the following test:

  • Does it line up with the Word of God?
  • If no, it does not pass the test and does not gain entrance into your mind or your heart.
  • If yes, then can it can have access to your mind or your heart.

You should always submit all of your thoughts and feelings to the authority of Jesus Christ.

Romans 12:3, “To every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly according as God has dealt to every man the measure of the faith.” Don’t cherish exaggerated ideas of yourself. You should never allow yourself to get “too big for your bridges.” You must learn to be humble and Christ like. God created us all be “equally yoked.” God created us to be “one in the same.” We are “all members in the Body of Christ.”

The mind can play many tricks on you like telling you “you can make it on your own.” God created us with “special talents” to use to help one another. God created us to be in relationships with each other. We must learn that we need each other no matter what. We are “one in the same under the Body of Christ.”

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

How to Succeed: Control Your Mind! (Part I)

Proverbs 4:23, “Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are issues of life.” Many people will manage their time, money, and weight, but what about managing your mind? You need to manage what goes in and out of your mind. Need to filter out the junk from your mind and filter in the good that helps you grow as a person. Many people fail to realize that your mind (brain) is one with your heart. What you feel in your heart plays a role in what you think. This is vice versa as well, what you think (mind) determines what you feel (heart).

Here is how you can guard the gateway to your heart and mind, just like Jesus did. You must refuse to concede in these three areas:

  • The agenda of people who want to use you for their own purpose.
  • The naiveté of those who do not believe in you or your dreams.
  • The scorn of those who don’t know you or think they know who you are.

2 Cor. 10:5, “Fight to capture every thought until it acknowledges the authority of Jesus Christ.”

You must learn to have control over what you allow to filter in and out of your mind. If not, every little thought you have will run your everyday life. One way to filter activities within your mind is to “submit your thoughts to the authority of Jesus Christ.” Matthew 28:18, “All authority in heaven and earth has be given to me [Jesus].” Jesus controls all that happens on earth and in heaven. He has the final say on everything including one’s thoughts.

Jesus doesn’t allow negative thoughts to control your mind. Jesus ensures that you and others see the God in you at all times. Jesus has authority over you, your thoughts, and your ideas. Once you allow Jesus to have complete control over your life, no negative feelings or thoughts will be able to control your mind or your life.

So, give Jesus authority over your thoughts to better manage your mind and your life.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

 

 


 

How to Succeed: Finish Strong!

Luke 2:47, “And all that heard Him [Jesus] were astonished at His understanding and answers.” Luke 2:49, “….I must be about my Father’s business.” Luke 2:52, “Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

My goal is to finish strong in developing and growing my consulting and mediation business. Like Jesus Christ, I am on a mission to complete the task God assigned to me. I do not believe in giving up or quitting. In my vocabulary is victory and finishing, and not giving up or quitting. I am a finisher and not a quitter.

Finishing means completing a task. It also means staying with the job until you complete it. You are accountable for your actions and your actions should show that you are a finisher and not a quitter.

Being a small business owner takes drive, energy, confidence, and being fearless. With a business, one must take responsibility for how their business is ran, and operate it with purpose and passion. Nothing compares to the “rush” of crossing the finishing line. If you start a business, stay in there until it becomes successful and sustainable. Focus on finishing strong when it comes to your business. Mission accomplished when business is sustainable and successful.

Donya Zimmerman is a business consultant, mediator, and legal professional with over ten years of experience.  She is owner of Family & Community Mediation and Business Consulting (FACMBC) based in Baltimore, Maryland and has been in business since 2013. Services provided by FACMBC:  Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services; Business Registration Assistance (Limited Liability Company, Corporation, S-Corp, Limited Liability Partnership, etc.); Business Plan Drafting Assistance; Business Certification Assistance (MBE, WOSB, 8A, 501(c) (3), Hub Zone, etc.); and Business Organization Assistance. She is also a contributing writer to the Maryland Daily Examiner Newspaper. Contact information: dzimmerman36@gmail.com; www.facebook.com/FACMBC; www.twitter.com/FACMBC; https://dzimmerman36.wordpress.com; http://www.linkedin.com/in/dzbusconsultantandmediator

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