[Business] My Favorite Superstar Business Resources

Being a booth renter brings not only creative, financial and scheduling freedom, it also brings a lot of little monkey wrenches that nestle themselves into our everyday operations.

Cleaning. Bookkeeping. Inventory. Advertising. Marketing. Financial planning. Liability insurance. Filtering solicitors. Menu building. Continuing education. Licensing. Scheduling systems.

And don’t even get me started on managing a team if you’re a salon owner.

It can be easy to become overwhelmed by managing all the moving parts of a small business. Here are a few of my favorite (SUPERSTAR) business resources that help smooth out my everyday operations so I can focus on making my clients feel beautiful. Because, you know, that’s why I do this day in & day out. #yafeelme

These resources are sideways little hacks that help me with the BUSINESS side of my beauty biz, not necessarily the BEAUTY side. (That’s another story for another day!) That’s why I call them my superstar biz resources.

I’ve made a cheat sheet of my favorite AFFORDABLE resources to help you delegate and automate your everyday operations, too.

Be sure to click the link below to grab your own copy.

*Full disclosure: I don’t gt a kickback from recommending any of these services. I use them (& fangirl them) because they work for me. Will they work for you, too??

1. Liability insurance.

Liability insurance is an absolute must in our industry. In fact, most booth rentals and studio suite leases require that beauty professionals hold their own liability insurance. General liability insurance protects against claims of bodily injury or property damage. Professional liability insurance provides protection against claims that YOU caused injury. Product liability insurance protects against claims of reaction to a product you used Professional Services sold. My favorite resource for obtaining liability insurance is Associated Nail Professionals because it’s a VERY complete coverage that is occurrence-based rather than coverage-based. As part of your annual membership, you’ll receive general, professional and product liability insurance coverage, a complimentary subscription to NAILS Magazine, among some other cool benefits.

2. Legal advice & support.
As a sole proprietor, I’ve sought legal advice more than once. The first time, a client requested a bunk refund because her card was swiped twice but was only charged once. You know how that happens sometimes? Well, her account showed two pending transactions for her pedicure. I TOTALLY get how frustrating that is because it can tie up your money for up to a week. I was out of the salon when the receptionist refunded her card, so it turned out that I didn’t get paid for the service. We left multiple voicemails stating that her service was unpaid & never got a response. Finally, I called my law firm. My attorney was able to recover the “measley” $45 without my having to seek assistance from a collections agency (though the firm could have arranged that for me if I’d needed.)

Every year, I call a tax attorney just to keep updated on any changes that I should know about. I’ve also called for advice on financial management, website Terms & Conditions, how to set up my gift certificates, booth rental contract review & personal things like speeding tickets, will planning & rental deposit recovery.

Consulting attorneys can be very costly, requiring expensive retainers or expensive hourly fees. My preferred legal assistance resource, LegalShield, is a membership that offers unlimited access to a real, high-quality, diverse, nationwide law firm for a quick, easy way to get your questions answered without having to worry about a retainer or crazy hourly bill. Their coverage is very comprehensive, so there’s a plan suitable for most employment & family situations. Coverage also extends across the entire country, so if something happens while you’re working out of town or on vacation, you’ve still got a support system.

3. Identity theft protection.
Sounds crazy, right? Identity theft is darn near commonplace nowadays, & it’s something I think EVERYONE should have protection against. IDShield, also part of the LegalShield family, offers an affordable ID Theft monitoring & protection service in many categories:

  • Credit score tracking, inquiries, activity
  • Credit card number monitoring
  • Bank account number monitoring
  • Court records monitoring
  • Payday loan monitoring
  • Name monitoring
  • Passport number monitoriing
  • Black market website surveillance
  • DOB monitoring
  • SSN monitoring
  • Phone number monitoring
  • Email monitoring
  • Driver License monitoring
  • Medical ID monitoring
  • Address change verification

This list isn’t inclusive of the activities YOU partake in; this list is only contains examples of how your personal information can be stolen & used, which is why LegalShield monitors them. There are many identity theft monitoring services available, but what I love about LegalShield’s service is that they offer identity repair services, not just notifications. Repairing identity theft costs an average of 200 hours and $2000 without restoration services.

4. Bookkeeping.
I muddled through sole proprietorship for years before I finally came to my senses and realized I’d had bad training from a tax preparer of questionable repute. Couple that with my affinity for network marketing opportunities & my nail pro coaching endeavors, keeping track of my business expenses started to feel a little more than I could handle. Enter bookkeeping sherpa, Lyster Bertrand. With her help & the Quickbooks Online app, I’m able to keep GOOD track of my expenses & income throughout the year for EACH of my businesses, which saves me HOURS in April. She’s easy to work with, explains things clearly & simply helped me gain peace of mind & clarity with how I was sorting out my expenses & how I should label everything on my tax returns.

I especially like the Quickbooks Online app because it automatically links to my bank & credit card accounts, so I just sort the transactions into categories. The app also allows you to attach photos of your receipts, which I love for ease of storage–no more shoeboxes. There’s also an option to track mileage. The information transfers straight into TurboTax if that’s what you or your tax prepaper uses, or you can download spreadsheets & all those fancy things if you’d prefer. I got a discount on my first year of service thanks to a TurboTax discount, if that’s something you use now.

GoDaddy Bookkeeping is a similar service that I LOVED (before GoDaddy acquired it), but I ended up severing ties a year after the acquisition because the pricing is not stable at all.

Those are my top 4 resources that gave me back my time & sanity in my beloved small business! Now, in my back office time in the mornings (aka “Tiger Time”), I can focus on how to develop my services, try new techniques & products, & generally improve my clients’ experiences. I also have more time to do fun things like this blog.

Don’t forget to grab your copy of my small biz resource cheat sheet & regain a little bit of order & peace of mind in your business by clicking the link here today.

Now? If I could just find a happy little cleaning fairy…

Mary xo

What services do you use to help maintain smooth operations in your business? Let us know in the comments below!

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