Business Plans From Tomorrow's Entrepreneurs

Twice a year, I have the honor of being a judge at the Connecticut Business Plan Competition, where students from business schools and undergraduate business programs throughout Connecticut compete for cash prizes and mentoring from leading business experts, in a format very similar to the popular "Shark Tank" television show.

The event has ...Read more

Buying a One-Way Ticket to a Courtroom

"I have a consulting business. Earlier this year, I contracted with a local business to provide management consulting services on a particular project. I normally charge by the hour, but the local business had an excellent reputation, and, frankly, I wanted to give them a good first experience, so I quoted them a flat fee for the project.

"No...Read more

Is It Good? Is It Bad? Who Knows?

There's an old vaudeville comedy routine that goes by the name "That's good. That's bad."

This routine was (at least for my generation) made famous by the late Archie Campbell, a country comedian who performed on "Hee Haw" and other comedy-variety television programs of the 1960s and 1970s (for an audio clip of Campbell's performance, go to ...Read more

Getting Cold Comfort When Joining a Startup

"I'm thinking about joining a new Web-based business where I would be one of three founders. The other two founders came from a previous company that's being liquidated, and the startup is buying the assets of the previous company with the proceeds of a bank loan. The loan money will be used to cash out the other owners of the previous company...Read more

Should You Charge a Flat Fee or an Hourly Rate?

"I run a home organizing business.

"When I do a job for a client, my work is divided into two parts: the first part is the 'design' phase, when I look at the client's home and make recommendations -- including detailed drawings -- as to how they can improve their closets and other storage spaces.

"Once the client approves my designs, the ...Read more

Your Website Terms of Service

"I operate a website with training and instructional materials for people who want to engage in certain online activities.

"Lately I've been getting 'cease and desist letters' from companies saying that I am doing things on their websites that violate their Terms of Service.

"I've looked into their complaints, and it seems that while I am ...Read more

Before You Start a Nonprofit Organization

"I am looking to set up a nonprofit organization with some friends to help raise funds for an obscure but devastating disease.

"I've been looking over the IRS forms for getting a tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and they look pretty daunting. My friends and I all have full-time jobs and are not sure we will ...Read more

Do You Really Have to Comply With the CCPA?

Last week's column dealt with the thorny topic of whether or not a web-based business really needs to comply with the European Union's new (well, fairly new) General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR.

Since the GDPR was made effective in May 2018, a number of U.S. states -- most prominently California -- have adopted "mini-GDPR" laws ...Read more

Do You Really Have to Comply With GDPR?

"My partners and I launched a software-as-a-service (SaaS) application earlier this year.

"We've gotten a good response to our product. Virtually all of our customers so far are in the United States and Canada, but we've started getting inquiries from potential customers in Europe.

"We're aware (thanks to your column) that Europe has a very ...Read more

How You Should Vote This November

Here it comes ... another contentious election season.

At the top of the ticket is a choice between two presidential candidates who don't exactly inspire people or represent the best America can produce (hmmm ... call it deja vu; I seem to recall we've been in this situation before).

At the bottom of the ticket are a whole bunch of people ...Read more

On the Desecration of Public Monuments

Like many Americans, I have viewed with dismay and confusion the systematic and wanton destruction of statues and monuments honoring people I was taught in my youth to view as "great Americans."

In a city just down the road from me, a mob pulled down a statue of Christopher Columbus that had stood in a vest-pocket park of the same name for ...Read more

In Praise of B.S. -- It's Not All Bad for Ya

As a longtime fan of comedian George Carlin (and, frankly, in looking for any sort of comedy to help my family through the pandemic), I was recently delighted to find a DVD online of an HBO special performance Carlin gave in Los Angeles only a few months before his death in June 2008.

The special, titled "It's Bad for Ya," was the usual blend...Read more



Arctic Circle Cathy Dana Summers Clay Bennett Steve Sack Monte Wolverton