May 19, 2020

4 tips to assist all new business owners

Business
CEO
company
Leadership
Cutter Slagle
3 min
4 tips to assist all new business owners

If you’re a new business owner, you may discover that you’re first year in this role could be the hardest. In fact, many believe that 90% of new businesses are destined to fail. And while starting a company can be stressful and there is no a guarantee that it will become successful, there are methods to help ensure you take the right path.

Originally reported by our sister brand Business Review Canada, the following four tips can assist any business owner who is just starting out. But it’s also imperative to remember this: building a successful company can take time and energy. Don’t give up!

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4. Have a good business plan

You may be tempted to skip a business plan, but writing out your vision can be a great way to determine what you specifically want to get out of your business and the different steps it will take to accomplish your goals. Of course, you don’t have to overwhelm yourself and write a long plan, but your business plan should be detailed enough that it completely states your ideas and whether or not you’ve got a good plan for the current market.

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3. Avoid high expenses

At the end of the day, your goal is to make a profit. Therefore, it will be important to make sure that you keep your expenses as low as possible. After all, new businesses often fail because they run out of money. Ways to save money include only hiring people you absolutely need and avoiding extra space of an office for as long as possible. And lastly, try to only spend money on items that you think you need.

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2. Reinvest money back into the company

As the CEO or owner of a company, it may be difficult at first to think about giving up a paycheck. However, the first money you make should always be put back into the company. Of course, you can choose to this money in a specific product of the marketing of the product, but the money should always go back into the business in some aspect. This may be a hard concept to accept, but during the first year of business, owners are often times the last to get paid for their work.

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1. It’s important to build a network

As a business owner, you should already know how important it is to network. After all, you never know when you’ll meet someone that can help you or your company. It’s important to go to different networking events, as anyone could be a potential customer, employee, or source of inspiration. Therefore, reach out to other professionals in your field and stay alert for any and all opportunities.

Who doesn’t want to be their own boss? There are many incentives that go along with running your own company. And while the path to success can often be stressful, exhausting and just plain difficult, reaching your full potential and fulfilling all of your achievements can be so worth the struggle.   

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[SOURCE: Forbes]

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Jun 13, 2021

Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl

CMO
Kyndryl
IBM
Leadership
Kate Birch
5 min
Former CMO for IBM Americas Maria Bartolome Winans was recently named CMO for Kyndryl. Maria talks about her new role and her leadership style

Former Chief Marketing Officer for IBM Americas, and an IBM veteran of more than 25 years, Maria Bartolome Winans was recently named CMO for Kyndryl.

Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.

With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.

You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?

I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.

We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.

What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?

I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.

The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.

I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.

What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?

When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.

What does success look like to you?

I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.

What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?

I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.

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