Month: August 2020

3 of the Best Uses for AI in Our New Normal

6 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is the most disruptive innovation of our lifetime. Its adoption has grown 60 percent in the last year, according to an April 2020 report by Narrative Science. The report’s authors say the is having a “significant and imminent impact on everything from company strategy, to operations, to job functions.”

So what are some of AI’s implications in the new normal, one in which American entrepreneurs find themselves saving cash, working from home and wearing masks everywhere they go?

Currently, for entrepreneurs, the most popular AI-powered solutions deal with predictive analytics (24 percent), (21 percent), language processing (14 percent) and and response (14 percent), according to the same Narrative Science report.

However, AI will also be adapted for seismic changes in business practices, health protocols and regulatory rules. In other words, companies will use AI in a way that delivers what consumers readily want. In fact, a 2017 study conducted by M.I.T. found that 84 percent of enterprises expect AI to obtain or maintain a competitive advantage, while 72 percent believe the technology will have a significant impact on product offerings.

With that kind of data in mind, how exactly do entrepreneurs like yourself stand to

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Implementing This One Simple Strategy Every Day Can Help you Overcome the Unsettling Emotions

How to pay attention to outside influences and monitor your body’s internal reactions.

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3 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Time and time again, we’ve heard reference to the importance of caring for ourselves before we’re able to care for others. There has never been a more crucial time than now to take that message to heart.

The stress of uncertainty wreaks havoc with our ability to stay calm and grounded, thus impacting our productivity in everything from completing everyday tasks and caring for ourselves and family to managing work projects remotely.

When events in the world around us are unpredictable and begin hitting closer to home, it’s typical for the associated stress to impact our and wellbeing, and today it can cause more damage than ever before.

Related: 5 Science-Backed Ways to Strengthen Your Brain

The one we can all implement that has the power to change our wellbeing prognosis is to pay .

We don’t need to sacrifice our wellbeing just because things around us are uncertain. Paying attention to outside influences and our body’s internal reactions can allow us to balance our unsettling emotions.

1. Include mindfulness meditation

Integrating mindfulness meditation into our

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4 Steps to Building a ‘We’ Culture at Your Business

6 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The past few months have tested our collective ingenuity and resolve in countless ways. How quickly can we roll out new things? Will our business be sustainable using a new delivery model? If employees aren’t at the office, can we trust them to get work done? 

Remote work has been put to the test in an impromptu global work experiment. From what we’re observing, it is working — especially for companies where mutual trust runs deep. 

Businesses with a “we” culture — an ethos that values collaboration, innovation, compassion and a “we’re all in this together” mindset — have kept growing, despite the challenges of COVID-19. 

Here’s how to build a “we” culture at your company.

Related: Six Tactics To Improve Collaboration For Remote Teams

1. Allow people to show up as their whole selves, all the time

Everyone thinks about a lot of different things each day, and the reality is that many people can’t fully compartmentalize all those things into work and not-work. Trusting people to show up as their whole selves means believing they will do what is right for them to be the best employees and people. That could mean taking a break for a run, tending to a sick child, logging

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Small Businesses Are Closing by the Thousands — But No One Knows Exactly How Many

A wave of business failures is going uncounted, in part because real-time data on small business is notoriously scarce, and because owners of small firms often want to avoid bankruptcy, according to an article by Bloomberg’s Madeleine Ngo.

Large corporations that are going through bankruptcies are legal affairs and often major news events. However, while the closure of a small business can be a traumatic event to all those personally involved ( owners, employees, and customers) they often are “silent deaths.”

80,000 | The review site Yelp has data showing 80,000 small businesses permanently closed during the time period, March 1 to July 25.

60,000 | Yelp reports that 60,000 of these companies had fewer than five locations.

Owners fear bankruptcy will scar their credit reports and hurt their future chances to rebuild.

There is a 24 percentage point higher likelihood of being denied a loan, according to the SBA, and a filing can show up on a credit report for 10 years.

Why this is important to the entire economy, not just the small businesses that close.

While the companies are small individually, the collective impact of their failures can be substantial. Firms with fewer than 500 employees account for about 44% of U.S. economic activity, according to a U.S. Small Business Administration report, and they

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Small Business Optimism Index Drops in July

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB)’s long-running “Small Business Optimism Index” fell 1.8 points to 98.8 in July. Small business owners continued to temper their expectations of future economic conditions as the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to continue.

“This summer has been challenging for many small business owners who are working hard to keep their doors open and remain in business,” said NFIB’s Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg. “Small business represents nearly half of the GDP and this month we saw a dip in optimism. There is still plenty of work to be done to get businesses back to pre-crisis numbers.”

Key findings in July’s small business owner index

18% | Job creation plans increased two points to a net 18%.
5% | Five percent acquired new buildings or land for expansion
10% | Spent money for new fixtures and furniture.
26% | Planning capital outlays in the next few months.

“Even with states reopening, sales are often lower due to business restrictions, social distancing requirements, and a still-reduced willingness of consumers to go out and mingle with the general population.”

A net 15% of the owners surveyed reported raising compensation (seasonally adjusted), remaining well below the 36% reading in February before COVID-19 policies were implemented in March. A net 13% plan to do so in the coming

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Cybersecurity Practices That Protect Your Small Business

4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Success instills pride. Unfortunately, valuable possessions also attract thieves. Entrepreneurs think lack of customers, bad service and limited capital are what causes bankruptcy. Try being a victim of cybercrime.

A 2019 report by insurance carrier Hiscox found that 60 percent of companies that are victims of a cyberattack go out of within six months. The average loss is $200,000. That’s a hefty sum for startups, most of which are already reeling from the virus outbreak. Currently, 15 percent of small businesses do not expect to survive the recession, which means a cyberattack would have devastating consequences.

Here are cybersecurity practices that protect your business.

Train staff on security protocols

While big companies get all the media attention, hackers also exploit smaller organizations. It’s partly because criminals know that small firms have less resources to devote to IT security. A 2019 Accenture study found that 43 percent of cyberattacks are aimed at small businesses but only 14 percent are prepared to defend themselves. A different McAfee study found that only 30 percent of employees receive annual cybersecurity training.

Related: Is Working Remote or Working From an Office More Secure?

Because startups have leaner budgets, it’s essential to implement the right security protocols that mitigate

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