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Small Business Trends

Most of my readers know that my family has been involved in running a small business for decades and that, as a lawyer, small business topics are of special interest to me.

For those of you who own a small business, this free webinar is too good to pass up. Did I mention that it is FREE?

Our friends at the National Federation of Independent Businesses ( have the Marketing Advisor for ECommerce Fed Ex, Kevin Chung as a presenter of the webinar.

According to the NFIB website, the webinar will be about recent trends in ECommerce.

Some of the topics include the growth of on- line spending; the use of mobile devices in ECommerce and using gift cards and discounts to improve business opportunities.

The webinar is free, (did I mention that?) but you must register before Sept. 20, 2917, by going to the NFIB website,, learn more about the webinars on offer and register.

Working To Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World

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Using Technology for Small Business

Don’t miss the chance to listen to a Director of Dell Technologies in a free webinar for small businesses.

Our friends at NFIB are offering the free webinar titled: Technology Trends Critical for Small Businesses.  The presenter is Rob Elzner, Director, eCommerce, Dell Technologies.

The webinar is on Wednesday August 23 at 12PM ET.

Space is limited for the webinar, so registration is required.

Mr. Elzner will be offering information about ”what technologies are critical for the small business person; the genuine threats and how to protect your business and how to win eCommerce without a ton of expense.”

Go to the NFIB website for more information and to register.

Working To Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World

Please read my full Disclaimer and How I Can Help You

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Flying In To Washington

I post often about small businesses and the importance of estate planning for the small business entrepreneur.

Our friends at the NFIB (National Federation of Independent Businesses) are holding their annual “Fly In” event.

NFIB Participants fly to Washington to attend events and to make their voice heard through the organization.

The dates are July 26 – July 27. For more information about the FlyIn, go to

If you cannot attend the event there will be ways to participate online. Check the NFIB website for details.

If you own a small business, this NFIB event will be worth tracking.

Working To Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World

Please read my full Disclaimer and How I Can Help You

Visit my website: for more articles and printable infographics


Free Help For Small Businesses

Our friends at the NFIB are offering a free live webinar for small business owners.  The webinar explores “OSHA’s Top 10 Most Cited Violations” as well as information about heat stress; natural disasters and weather emergencies.  There will also be free mobile apps on offer.

The webinar is Wednesday, May 24 and for more information got to to sign up

Working To Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World

Please read my full Disclaimer and How I Can Help You

Visit my website: for more articles and printable infographics

Employee Retention and the Small Business

Finding and keeping good employees is always a challenge and more so for the small business person. Small business competes with conglomerates for the best, most talented, the most motivated and the brightest employees.  But smaller businesses do have some advantages. Indeed, some people choose never to work for a large conglomerate, but rather to develop their careers solely within the small business community.

For those of you reading my blogs you know that I am the product of a small family- owned business. My legal clients now are often family business owners of small and medium- sized firms.  Thus, I am always eager to share articles and information to help them.   And the area of employee retention takes the spotlight today.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average worker may hold ten different jobs before age forty.

According to CNN.Money article: “The new normal: 4 job changes by the time you’re 32”by Heather Long   @byHeatherLong   April 12, 2016

Change is the new norm:  Top employers accept that an interviewee on their resume will show a job change as often as every three years!

Total lifetime job changes:  Forrester Research ( predicts that today’s youngest workers will hold twelve to fifteen jobs in their lifetime!

Training new employees is expensive and even more of a challenge for the small business owner. Training takes time, and often TIME is something the small business owner lacks.

One idea coming from is information as to why employees are likely to leave a job. With such information, the small business owner can tailor their unique work environment toward the retention of good employees.

Shift of priorities:  It appears that, rather than big salaries, workers are now interested in keeping a good Work/Life Balance. When that balance between work time and family/leisure time gets seriously unbalanced, then the employee is more likely to leave their job and seek a job with better balance.

The final word: Offer your employees a fair salary;  provide reasonable opportunity for advancement with relevant job training;  manage a decent benefits package; develop a healthy work environment without undue stress and with meaningful work assignments; practice a good management style; and a situation offering good work/life balance – and you just might be able to retain your best employees and compete for the best and brightest out there.

Working To Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World

 Please read my full Disclaimer and How I Can Help You

Visit my website: for more articles and interesting infographics


Small Business Apps

It has been a while since I posted an article for my small business owners. 


 So… when I read a recent great posting from the NFIB (National Federation of Independent Business)  I wanted to share it. 


Most of us have at least one app on our mobile devices, many of us have four or five apps (or more) that we find helpful.


The infographic  on the NFIB website(  under  “Apps for small businesses” – Which apps are really worth using – offers a short list of apps that the small business owner can use to help control costs, reduce expenses and help increase productivity.


 A few of the apps mentioned  are even free!  And free is good.


 The information presented on the NFIB website is in the form of a simple infographic.  Since small business owners rarely have the time to read through a long technical article, this infographic was a great find. 


Working to Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future…in a Constantly Changing World


Please read my full Disclaimer and How I Can Help You


 Visit my website: for more articles and interesting infographics






Perpetuation or Succession Planning?

Perpetuation the noun and the related verb “perpetuate” have a Latin root, perpetuus, which means “continuous or universal.” Other meanings for “perpetuation” are lengthening and continuance. So how does perpetuation planning differ from succession planning…or does it?

Perpetuation planning is a term used in business planning, or perhaps more often used in an agency business. I have read a number of definitions of perpetuation planning and some are quite similar to succession planning for small business. One article “What is a Business Perpetuation Plan?” by Lisa Magloff, Demand Media in the Houston Chronical is insightful and also states that “Only around 1.5 per cent of all survive into the third generation of management…” (as reported in the Portland Business Journal.) Also, Ms. Magloff writes, “Many successful business owners sell their business when faced with unexpected circumstances…” There is also in the article an emphasis on formulating a sound “buy/sell agreement”.

The key elements of perpetuation planning offer for an agency/business: the smooth transition to new ownership; focus on maintaining and building value for the agency/business; minimize risk e.g. what happens if the owner of the agency/business is suddenly disabled or dies; provides for continuity of cash flow during transition; and enables the business to take advantage of positive economic forces (i.e. the business is not forced to be sold during periods of slow economic growth). All of these elements sound very much like those of a sound business succession plan.

My sense is that while business succession planning might have more of a focus on “passing on” the business to family (hence the word succession) , the focus of perpetuation planning has a focus on both the internal (i.e. employees retained as shareholders) and the external (finding a business partner outside the agency) (hence perpetuating the business, but not necessarily within the family). I would readily accept thoughts on that!

Regardless of whether your future business planning is focused on having a family member take over the business…or selling the business outright and/or retaining some form of shareholding…the fact is that having a plan is critical to the long term stability and success of your business.

I have written previously about succession planning for small businesses. My own family has owned a small business ever since I can remember. Another article in Insurance Journal (November 17, 2014) by Catherine Oak, titled “Perpetuation Planning” outlines the need for a long term outlook to maintain your business through the generations and also counsels the used of qualified professionals to direct your plan. I heartily concur!

Working to Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future . . . in a Constantly Changing World.

Please see my disclaimer at the bottom of this page and the column, How I Can Help You. You can read more blogs, articles, infographics and details about my Colorado law practice on my website

Barbara Ann Dalvano, Esq. Phone and Text Message: (719) 963-2933

The Small Business Environment

Our friends at the NFIB (National Federation of Independent Businesses) , have published a report on what they believe are the five cities in the United States that are most friendly to small business development. You can read the entire article on their website Here is a brief synopsis to whet your appetite for the article. The rank of the top five cities are based on their tax friendly environment; their regulatory requirements; and their resources – in order of the NFIB ranking – Casper, Wyoming won first place; Jackson, Mississippi ran second; Las Vegas, Nevada placed third; Orlando, Florida ranked fourth and Phoenix, Arizona was fifth.

If you are fortunate enough to be contemplating a small business in one of the above cities – Congratulations!


Beware ‘Free’ Legal Advice

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) posted another helpful article.  If you own (or intend to start) a small business, the article is a valuable read.  Four Pieces of Legal Advice That Sound Good … But Small Business Owners Should Ignore is by Katie Truesdell.  In it she interviews experts and outlines advice that the small business owner should be extremely wary of taking at face value.

One of the points of the article (and one that I have frequently written about) is that – when you need a legal document drafted…go to a lawyer.  Do not take the document “off the shelf” or from an online source or book.  In particular, business contracts must be specifically tailored to the business and the state. (see one of the previous blogs titled, My Bespoke Law Practice on my website.)

Another point from the article is that, if you intend to sign a non-compete agreement (or hire someone who has signed a non compete agreement), it is enforceable!  Let’s make a simple example (not used in the article): Ms. Jones joyfully sells her boutique small business to a larger company and signs a non compete agreement, which states that she cannot open another similar business in the area.  (This a very simplified example.)  Ms. Jones has been told by “people” that the non compete does not really mean anything… the buyer of her small business would not want to try to enforce it, etc. etc.  Ms. Jones opens another similar small business. Suddenly she finds herself in the middle of expensive litigation! Why? Because the buyer of her first small business did indeed decide to enforce the non compete agreement! Was the ‘advice’ that Ms. Jones received worth the price of litigation? There are other types of non compete agreements and the statutes vary by state…Remember, they are legal documents and enforceable.

The bottom line…Beware signing any agreement or contract without appropriate legal advice.

 To read the entire article, go to the NFIB website,  According to their website: “NFIB is America’s leading small business association, promoting & protecting the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses.” You can sign up to be on their email list for future articles.

 Working to Preserve Your Wealth and Protect Your Future in a Constantly Changing World.

 This post has been brought to you through the Law Office of Barbara Ann Dalvano.  This information is provided for educational purposes only and to generate ideas, provoke thought and facilitate conversation.  It is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.  Each person’s situation is different and this information should not and cannot be relied upon as legal, tax, accounting or investment advice.  Please read the entire disclaimer for more important information. 

  Barbara Ann Dalvano, Esq.

Phone and Text Message:  (719) 963-2933

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