First Kiva Project in Minnesota Funded!

Angie Horkey of Westbrook is opening The Recipe with the help of Kiva The Southwest Initiative Foundation (SWIF) recently endorsed its first project through Kiva Zip, an online crowd-funding tool. Widely known as the international microlending site, Kiva recently started a pilot project called Kiva Zip, the online microlending platform specifically for businesses within the […]

5 Factors That Impact Your Credit Score

Knowing these facts, and following them, can help keep your credit score where you want it. Payment History – 35% A recent late payment could lower your credit score 60 to 100 points. Late payments damage the score the most at first, with less of an impact as it ages. A late payment can stay […]

Southwest Initiative Foundation Endorses First Kiva Loan Project

Angie Horkey of Westbrook seeking support for her new business The Southwest Initiative Foundation (SWIF) recently endorsed its first project through Kiva Zip, an online crowd-funding tool. Widely known as the international microlending site, Kiva recently started a pilot project called Kiva Zip, the online microlending platform specifically for businesses within the U.S. SWIF was […]

To BE or not to BE . . .

I recently read an article called, “Are You Time Rich?” by Barbara Hoese, Carol Miller and Barbara Williamson. (http://www.inventuregroup.com/download/on-purpose-archive/Volume_9_Issue_3.pdf) Managers in corporate America were asked what one thing would make them more effective and almost unanimously they indicated, “time management.”  The surprising awareness, however, came when further discussion indicated that the usual approach of having […]

What Makes the Microentreprise Lending Program Different?

The Southwest Initiative Foundation microloan program is dedicated to the development and growth of small businesses in Southwest Minnesota.   Many of you may already know this.   How are we different from other small business lenders?   The answer to that question is in the services we provide – free technical assistance in business and financial planning, training in […]

Should Crowd-funding be a part of your financing project?

For those currently seeking financing for your startup or expansion, should crowd-funding be a portion of your sources of funds?  The quick answer is maybe.  Lets be honest, crowd-funding is nothing new; it’s been going on for centuries.  But with technology and social media, the scope and sphere of influence is greater than ever. From […]

The Importance of a Cash Flow Analysis

Creating a well thought out cash flow analysis is a very important part of planning for your business.  This analysis will help you determine the sales volume you will need to cover your expenses and break even.  It will help you determine your net income and when you may be able to start taking an […]

When (or If) You Receive a Notice from the IRS

Here are eight great tips from the IRS. Receiving a notice from the Internal Revenue Service is no cause for alarm. Every year the IRS sends millions of letters and notices to taxpayers. In the event one shows up in your mailbox, here are eight things you should know. 1. Don’t panic. Many of these […]

Time For Breakfast!

In early August I attended a Social Media Breakfast in Redwood Falls.  I had been hearing the “buzz” and was looking forward to seeing what it was all about.  I knew that I would probably enjoy it since I am learning as much as I can about using social media in the business world.  I […]

Connecting The Dots

You may have heard about some of the recent efforts in Minnesota to build a better, highly-skilled workforce such as Skills@Work (http://www.gwdc.org/initiatives/skills_at_work.html) and the Workforce Assessment. http://www.mnscu.edu/business/workforceassessment/index.html.  I recently attended listening sessions where business executives shared their needs and the challenges they are seeing related to workforce.  Problem-solving, creative thinking, communicating, and teamwork are common […]