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StreetShares Blog - The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses

StreetShares Blog

The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses

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Why The Military Is The Best Entrepreneurship Training Program In America

By Mark L. Rockefeller, Co-Founder & CEO on January 17, 2018

 

This story was originally posted in Forbes on August 3, 2016.

One organization has produced more business owners than any other single institution in the nation.

It has a proven track record of teaching leadership, strategic planning, creative problem-solving, task execution, and resiliency—all traits essential to business ownership. It is not a fancy MBA or university program.

The organization is the United States military.

For many years, military veterans have become entrepreneurs at a much higher rate than non-veterans. Indeed, a shocking 49% of World War II veterans went on to own or operate their own businesses, according to a study from Syracuse University.

In the modern era, an exciting veterans’ entrepreneurship movement is once again spreading across America. These so-called “vetrepreneurs” are thriving. They have their own accelerators and incubators, their own venture capitalists, their own support organizations and coaches, and even their own Shark Tank stars (shout out to Navy SEAL-led Bottle Breacher and Army Ranger-led Combat Flip Flops).

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Tips from a CFO: Get to Know Your Cash Flow and Receivables Turnover Ratio

By StreetShares on January 16, 2018

Watch your receivables turnover ratio to keep your business healthy

This post is a guest submission from Manuel “Manny” Cosme, President and CEO of CFO Services Group, which provides accounting solutions for small and growing businesses. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official opinions, policies, or positions of StreetShares or any of its affiliates.

Do you know when your next client or customer payment is coming in? Is it likely to arrive on time? If you can’t answer these simple questions, you may have cash flow troubles brewing – and no early warning system in place.

As a small business owner, you know the pain of waiting on a check that’s “in the mail.” Unpredictable cash inflow and outflow can create chaos and stress. (Not to mention panic on payroll day.) We encourage business owners to get a handle on your receivables turnover ratio as soon as possible, and to check it regularly. Understanding and managing your cash flow can help avoid ugly surprises and help you know when to ask for a small business loan or line of credit in advance.

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Highlighting Our Heroes: Building Momentum

By Thomas Moody on November 8, 2017

Meet Brad Halsey.

Brad is a Navy veteran and the CEO & Founder of Building Momentum. Building Momentum provides world-class professional technology education through challenge-driven emerging technology instruction (think robots, 3D printing, and drones). Using StreetShares contract financing, Brad was able to buy the equipment he needed to provide Marine Corps units with technical training in real-world scenarios.

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Veteran Owned Small Business Award Finalists

By Thomas Moody on November 7, 2017

The Veteran Small Business Award continues! We have 12 great veteran business owners with very unique companies. Take a quick peak at the finalists below and remember to cast your vote on the StreetShares Foundation voting page. Vote now and help three veteran business owners get grant funding.

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"I Want To Show The World That Entrepreneurs Like Me Can Exist"

This story was originally posted in Forbes on September 27, 2017.

Meet Andy Williams.

He's a Marine Corps veteran who owns a sizable chunk of the real estate rental market in the same Texas town where he once picked up cans on the side of the road to make money.

His path to prosperity has been hard-fought and incremental: he has launched multiple successful companies, closed over $250,000,000 of real estate finance transactions, personally invested in over 100 real estate deals, and is currently hosting a TV show for HGTV, Flip or Flop Fort Worth.

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Defying Unemployment Rates Among Military Spouses through Entrepreneurship

Military spouses share a commonality among themselves as they may go through several permanent change of station (PCS) moves and are always transitioning with new friends and communities. The military spouse lifestyle not only affects one’s personal life, but also his or her professional life. 

More than 18 percent of employed military spouses have seasonal or temporary jobs and 82 percent of those spouses would prefer a permanent position, according to a study by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation1.

Even though there has been a decline in military spouse unemployment from 23 to 16 percent, according to recent studies by the Department of Defense and the U.S Chamber of Commerce Foundation, military spouse survey respondents appear to be underemployed and not fully utilizing their skill sets.

We’ve worked with several military spouses who are defying these statistics because they’ve turned into entrepreneurs and small business owners. You may remember our list of the Top 10 Most Influential Military Spouse Business Owners who have made a difference in military spouse communities and are helping to decrease military spouse unemployment and underemployment. 

Today, we’ll take a deeper dive into the story of one military spouse business owner, Stephanie Brown, CEO of The Rosie Network. She'll tell us how she got started, how she's impacting the veteran and military spouse community and how she continues to grow with veteran business loans and small business financing.

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“Serving” Again to Support Military Veteran Business Owners

By Ed Walters, Chief Marketing Officer on September 7, 2017

I come from a family of military veterans. I am a graduate of West Point and served in the US Army before entering business. My grandfather served in the Army Air Corps during WWII, my father served as an Infantry Officer in Vietnam, my brother served in the US Army at the same time I did, and now my oldest son is finishing Army ROTC with plans to become an Army medical doctor.

There were times when I wished I had stayed in the Army for a full 20+ year career instead of entering the corporate world. I have worked for amazing companies, but the camaraderie of going through tough shared experiences in the military with my brothers and sisters in arms built bonds that we will forever share. I missed the supportive social network where everyone helped their teammates through the good and bad times, and to be honest, how we joked and ribbed each other in good nature. 

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Applying for a Small Business Loan? Here are 10 Things to Know

By StreetShares on September 1, 2017

For many small business owners as well as veteran-owned business owners, the loan application process can be tedious and overwhelming. It’s hard to know where to start and how exactly to present yourself to a potential lender. That’s why we’ve compiled this checklist for you to reference as you pull together your business loan application for a term loan, line of credit or if you’re mobilizing for contract financing from a factoring company.

What to Know Before You Go

Loan request approvals depend on how well you present yourself, your business and your financial needs to your business lender. The best way to do that is to know beforehand the answers to the most common questions lenders may ask:

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Traditional Investment Options to Power Your Retirement Savings [Infographic]

By StreetShares on August 24, 2017

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Just as military members have carefully and thoughtfully planned countless missions over the years, there’s a mission that anyone, regardless of military affiliation, should be planning for with equal care: planning for retirement.

We’ve touched on this “mission” previously; in fact, we recently shared some ideas on the military’s retirement systems, comparing the new Blended Retirement System (BRS) to the old Legacy Retirement system, and discussing steps to plan for retirement.

In this post, we’ve detailed what everyone, whether you’re in the service or not, needs to know about the most commonly offered retirement savings options. With this information, you’ll be well on your way to creating a retirement plan that works for you – and maybe even help a few veterans along the way. 

Here’s an easy-to-follow infographic on Mission: Retirement, outlining three steps to assist you in determining, calculating and ultimately learning more about your retirement.

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4 Things to Do Before You Submit & How to Bid for a Government Contract

By StreetShares on August 16, 2017

In our government contracting blog series, we’ve looked at why the Federal Government is a good opportunity for many different types of small businesses. We’ve discussed potential advantages like set-asides made for veteran-owned businesses, how some great modern tools can help you evaluate your market and find the financing you need to start these projects. Now, let’s dive into how to bid for a government contract.

This article is an excerpt from, “The Government Contractor’s Handbook,” which includes step-by-step guides and eight chapters of resources. Download it now.

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