Start ups

Small Business and Startups: Build Teams, Have Fun

Mike | August 10th, 2015

Who says business can’t be fun? Leadership is not just about productivity, strategy, and tactics – much more important is the fact that great leadership is about people. Strong leaders never lose sight of the individuals who make up their team and never stop working to make the team stronger. A great team is at once […]

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From the Vault: Give it a Break, Already.

Mike | August 3rd, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: We originally published this post 5 years ago. Seein’ as how we are away right now for a long summer weekend, we thought we’d share this one one more time… enjoy! I left early this morning for the first “real” vacation I have had in over a year and I am looking forward to eating lobster […]

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Small Business and Startups: Finding Your Match

Mike | July 27th, 2015

Last week I wrote about customer service and the importance of scheduling and allocating your support resources. Lots of small businesses find that they can deliver top-notch, high-volume customer support with very small teams of people as long as they have the correct tool and as long as they pay close attention to the kinds of problems […]

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Small Business and Startups: Making Customer Service Available (On Your Own Terms)

Mike | July 20th, 2015

Periodically (like every single quarter) we review our customer service data to determine whether we are best using our resources. This is an excellent practice for a small company, especially one that is ambitious and by its very nature capacity constrained. At crowdSPRING we strive to provide world-class quality support, but our team is small […]

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Lean Business Tips: Marketing Channels on the Cheap

Mike | July 13th, 2015

Startups and small businesses face a steep learning curve when it comes to online marketing. The options are rich, the ROI can be cruel, the capacity investment can be significant, and the results can often be questionable. At crowdSPRING we have experimented with virtually every online marketing strategy and tactic available, often with negative results. The […]

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A Victory for Artists Everywhere – Thank You Taylor Swift!

Mike | June 29th, 2015

Thank You Taylor Swift! Wow. Words I never once imagined being typed by my own fingers. But, credit where credit is due, Miss Swift went up against Goliath, carefully aimed and swung her sling and, Pow! The monster was vanquished! If you don’t know what I am talking about here, a little background: about a […]

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Small Business and Startups: Teams and Transparency

Mike | June 22nd, 2015

How transparent is too transparent? At crowdSPRING we have worked hard since we first launched to share information openly and honestly with our users, our investors, and our team. We communicate regularly with customers about site issues, new features, and our policies and procedures. We ask for feedback and suggestions and, when users choose to share […]

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Small Business and Startups: Things to do Before I Die (Entrepreneur’s version)

Mike | June 15th, 2015

I write often about setting goals and defining strategy, but I rarely think about those things in a personal context. What should my own goals be for the next 10 years and beyond? What strategies can I use to accomplish those goals? As startup founders go, I am a pretty old guy. When we started […]

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5 Things Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Kindergarten Teachers

Mike | May 18th, 2015

If you remember the name of your kindergarten teacher, raise your hand. In a poll of adults, almost 70%  could recall the person with great clarity.  This is remarkable, because not only was this decades ago but the respondents were just 5 or 6 years old at the time! Our very first teachers were memorable because they were sources of […]

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Small Business and Startups: 8 Steps To a Successful Redesign

Mike | May 11th, 2015

There comes a time when a business looks hard at its website and lets out a groan of dismay. Your website is out-dated, out-moded, and out-competed and it doesn’t take a genius to see. Your own customers may have been telling you to get it together and, whether you are listening or not, it doesn’t […]

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