Inspirational Quote of the Day

walter-scott

“Success or failure in business is caused more by the mental attitude even than by mental capacities.”

― Walter Scott

Goal Setting and Personal Analytics

goal setting personal analytics

As this week comes to an end, we have started a new month and the weather has warmed up rather quickly. Here in NYC, it was about 45 degrees one day, and 82 degrees the next and has continued to stay warm ever since. The summer is here early and even though you might want to stay out and enjoy the glorious weather, you shouldn’t neglect your duties as an entrepreneur. If you have systems in place,  which you should, you will have the time to handle all your duties and enjoy the weather. One example of said system is  goal setting and personal analytics.

Setting Goals

Setting goals is a great way to stay on track. Goals give you something to strive for, as well as act as a measuring tool on your progress. I like to push myself a little farther, especially after achieving the goal I had set. I review the goal list for the month that just past, keeping note of the ones I achieved, including date of achievement, and the ones I failed to meet. I note what prevented me from completing that goal and 3 different ways, for each excuse, on how to overcome the barrier. Nine times out of ten, the solution lies within you and you just have to figure out the best way to bring it forward. Analyzing the goals is a great method in figuring out your barriers and what you need to demolish them.

Growing from the Failures

As I write down my goals for the new month, I include the ones I did not complete, with the methods I will be using for each goal, in order to meet the goal this time around. If need be, I research and study all the things that were holding me back. Let’s say you did not meet the sales numbers you had set upon, but you noticed you did not network properly to expand your clientele and name in the community. You might want to take a confidence class, which will help you speak and network effectively and with confidence. Confidence breeds success, and when you are confident in your self and what your do or offer, others will see the same and be more willing to work with you. Another example of a business goal not achieved is lack of leads from social media accounts. You might want take a class/course on social media marketing and tools to increase your knowledge in the area and learn the tools necessary to implement a profitable social media marketing plan. The analysis is the easy part, the action you put into meeting the goal is what counts. If you do not intend on doing the work, it makes no sense for you to set goals, since you plan on doing nothing with the information learned.

My Goals for June

Investing in yourself to meet a goal will pay off ten fold in the future. Knowledge is something no one can take away from you. The more you learn, the easier it will be to meet your goals and the more time you have to enjoy yourself and family. Just remember, ad I cannot stress this enough, learning alone will not bring forth success, you have to put into action what you have learned. I set goals every month, and my goals for the month of June are as follows: (1) $10K in sales; (2) Attend 2 networking events; (3) buy new laptop and printer; (4) begin studying for the PACE Registered Paralegal Certification Exam; (5) Do my first webinar. Have you set your goals for June? Feel free to post them on the Martinez Consulting Services Facebook Page or under the picture, featured above, on the Martinez Consulting Services Instagram Page.

 

Never Stop Learning

never stop learningOver the years, I have been involved in many types of businesses, legal and illegal. I have no shame as my father used to tell me you learn everything, because you never know a day might come where you will need those skills to survive. My father was my first teacher when it came to business, and never stop learning was ingrained in me. At first I thought it was fun, I was five years old and helping my dad with his “work”. My dad had many legitimate businesses over the years, but he always supplemented his income running numbers, or better known as the ghetto lottery. In the eighties, my dad started giving me little jobs to do in the business, since he ran it from our home, I had business education .

Beginning Years

At an early age, although I was having fun with my sister, I was being taught how a business is run with systems. I would see my dad creating charts by hand to document his “work”, then their were recordings of phone calls as back ups to the charted data, and more. As I grew older, I wanted to take part in my dad’s other business which consisted of property management, video stores, grocery stores, a social club and a softball team. My dad took me everywhere with him and I learned about all the businesses and participated in the management too.

By age twelve, I was managing one of the video stores, working along my dad learning about the administration of employees and dealing with direct sales. Up until this point, I was always behind the scenes doing mostly administrative work at home. By the age of eighteen, I would’ve continued working along my dad, but his words still resonated, never stop learning. Since my business background was probably more of an education than I would’ve received at any institution, I decided to go into the legal field. I attended John Jay College of Criminal Justice in NYC and received a Bachelors in Legal Studies.

Before I even received my degree, I started to work in a law firm, learning what else but real estate. I actually am trained in all areas of law, but my main activities revolved around the buying and selling of property, as well as management and the eviction process of tenants. I have continued to learn in the 15 years I’ve been actively working in the legal field, and I use what I’ve learned in all of the businesses I now own. I have developed a tough skin, especially since I’m a small business owner in a male dominated world, especially in the real estate business in NYC. It doesn’t help me that I’m only 5 feet tall, you should see how I look in Court among dozens of attorneys, usually 5′ 8″ and taller. I have to literally push my way to the front just so the judge can see and acknowledge me when the case is called.

The Downfall

In recent years, I had to learn about Alzheimer’s and epilepsy. In 2008, my dad fell down the stairs on New Years Eve. I was bleeding for hours, unconscious on the floor, until a tenant found him at around 1AM, January 1. Because my dad smelled like beer, he was automatically classified as an alcoholic that was celebrating too hard. No testing was ever done and no follow ups were scheduled. He again fell and had to be taken to the hospital, sometime in February. Again, no testing was done and no follow-ups were scheduled. Since I was working in the law firm, I did not notice that my dad was doing worse than originally thought of, but the tenants noticed and they began to take advantage of the situation, including my uncle, his brother.

The “falls” stopped for years, so I was continued to be oblivious to the situation in the  businesses. My dad had already put me on the business documentation, but I had not taken over anything, as I did not see the need. In my mind, dad was still capable of running things. Everything changed when Hurricane Sandy hit, and our main residence was damaged. Since there was an apartment vacant in one of our rentals, I was able to move in with my daughters. Now I was spending more time with my dad, since we was now together everyday; my mom moved in with my sister since that was closer to her job.

Picking up the Pieces

Now that I was there everyday, I was shocked to see the state of things, and immediately began to take action and enforce the paperwork dad had prepared. I began to evict all the tenants that were not paying and began to rehabilitate the properties. You need to invest money, to make money. I had some help from about 3 family members, but that is it. No one wanted to help me because I would not do things shady, or was not lenient with any of them.

As things started to turn around, my dad “fell” down the stairs again and had to be hospitalized. This time around, he had to spend 8 days, since the injury to his skull was severe. About a month after being released from the hospital, he had a seizure early in the morning. The doctors again said it was the alcoholism, but my dad was now living with me permanently, and he was not drinking at all. I was ignored and he was released a few hours later. The following month, Thanksgiving day, my dad fell and had another seizure. This time around, I changed the hospital and he finally got the treatment he needed. He was having seizures all along, but since he was classified as an alcoholic, he was never tested or treated for it.

The epileptic seizures runs in our family, as does Alzheimer’s, which accelerates if the seizures are left untreated. All of these obstacles in the latter part of my life, have opened me up to learning more. Not about business or legal stuff, about myself. I’ve learned that I can do it, no matter how hard the obstacle seems. I was faced with threatening tenants, abusive family members, abandonment when everyone turned their backs with the hurricane and with my dad, as well as legal issues and contempt when I had to evict my uncle from an apartment. It was hard but I learned and pushed thru. I still get the occasional hater, but I just brush it off and continue to do what I have done.

never stop learning

Never Stop Learning

I was able to work on the properties, all the while taking care of my father, 2 girls and officially starting my business, Martinez Consulting Services. I was already providing these professional services to many locals since the early 90s, I just never made it official until 2015. I learned I was being selfish by keeping all the skills I have learned over the years, and I should be sharing them with others, not just locally. By providing professional services, I have been able to continue to deal with the mess my father created, unintentional, but still a problem I had to deal with, since no one else stepped up to the plate, out of six kids.

Everyday I try to learn something new and share something new. Maybe I’ll start a new saying with my girls: Never stop learning, but at the same time, never stop teaching. Your gifts and talents are not yours, they are to be shared with the those who need them.

Live and Learn: How I Got into Credit Repair

For many years, over 20, I have provided professional services to mainly my dad’s friends, senior citizens that didn’t speak much English. Social security papers, employment documents, etc., I would help them fill out whatever form they needed assistance with. From there, I started giving business advice to those same Spanish speaking friends of my dad that owned businesses. I was typing papers and letters for various businesses, all before going to college. Learning about credit repair was not even an idea at the time, honestly I didn’t know something like that existed at the time

As the years went by, I continued studying and expanded into the legal field, with an ultimate goal of becoming a lawyer. I became a paralegal to get practice in the field, but doing the administrative and research part was, to me, more enjoyable and I desisted on going to law school. I continued to do some business consulting and assisting as I worked in various law firms through out years, gaining experience in various sectors of the legal field. I concentrated on my career, and was not involved in the family real estate business at this point of my life.

The Downfall

Then, Hurricane Sandy hit in October 2012, and everything changed. The house we lived in was damaged during the storm, looted by thieves afterwards, and insurance didn’t cover any of it. FEMA gave us approximately $4,600 for repairs, but that all went mainly on the clean up and removal of the tree that fell on the house and securing the house to prevent further break-ins. I wasn’t worried about the money at the time because we owned property, in mind it was going to be easy to get a loan for everything we needed to repair and move back home. Boy was I wrong. My dad was developing Alzheimer’s and had not been running the business correctly. I was so busy with my career and kids that I didn’t see the signs that he was sick. He had fallen on several occasions, but each time the doctors said it was because my dad was drinking. He was labeled an alcoholic and was not tested on, if they had , they would have discovered he was having seizures. The seizures were accelerating the Alzheimer’s symptoms, which explained why the business was the way it was.

I tried getting a loan, and was denied because the business didn’t have credit. How could this be when the properties all have a total combined value of approximately $1.2 million. Why am I being denied when we are technically millionaires, at least on paper? The business didn’t have a red cent to its name. The tenants had already noticed something was wrong and were taking advantage of the situation.

I took a step back and started taking control of it all. I began evicting all the non paying tenants, and I took steps to rehab the properties, as they were in disrepair. While all of this was being done, I began to take courses on finances and credit. I had to learn why I was denied, and what I had to do to fix that. It took time but I have learned the ins and outs of credit repair and building credit files for both individuals and businesses. I decided to incorporate my consulting business and build a separate credit file, as I have learned my lesson, the hard way, but at least I learned. I also want to teach others the same before they are faced with a predicament like mines, so I added the service to the list of professional services I offer. Running a business can be bank-breaking, especially the first two years in business. Being able to establish credit early in order to enable the business to run continuously is essential if you want to succeed.  Don’t wait until it’s too late.

I hope my story sets an example of what not to do, and make sure your finances are in order, both business and personally. It’s best to always be prepared because you can’t rely on things, like insurance, to get back on your feet in the face of adversity.

Business Structures: What is Best For Your Business

As a business consultant, I am always asked the question “what’s the best business structure?” My first response is it depends what kind of business do you have and how do you want to pay the taxes for the business. There are four (4) basic structures a business can have: sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company or corporation.

A sole proprietorship is the simplest and cheapest structure a business can have. It’s a single individual that can start the business by filing a “doing business as” or DBA certificate with county clerk or other city official, but it is not necessarily required. You can just start working and file your business profit and loss statement or Schedule C with your personal taxes. Under this business structure, you are liable for all expenses, law suits, etc., incurred for the business.

A partnership is the same as a sole proprietorship, but it involves two individuals or more as heads of the business. There’s usually a partnership agreement amongst the parties involved and liability is shared equally. Partnership income is filed under Form 1065 and included when filing your personal taxes.

A corporation is a business entity formed separated completely from the corporate shareholders. It is formed by filing the appropriate documents with the state and paying the required fees. It is recognized as an “individual” by the IRS and it is given an employee identification number (EIN) or tax identification number. The corporate shareholders are protected from being liable for the expenses, law suits, etc., incurred by the corporation. Depending on the type of corporation the business has elected to file its taxes under, determines the way the corporate income is taxed. If the business is filing as a C-corporation, the corporation pays taxes on the corporate income as a whole and the shareholders subsequently pay taxes on their share of the corporate income, a sort of double tax. If the business elects to file as an S-corporation, the taxes paid are through the shareholder’s personal tax return, like a partnership/sole proprietorship, using Form 1120S. All corporations are required to continuously file forms with the state, including but not limited to, shareholder meeting minutes, elections, biennial statements, etc.

A limited liability company (LLC) is a cross between a corporation and a partnership/sole proprietorship. An LLC provides the protection a corporation provides its shareholders from liability, but it is taxed like a partnership/sole proprietorship. An LLC is also simpler to manage as it does not require to file company forms with the state, on a continuous basis, like a corporation does.

Deciding on a business structure is a difficult decision, but it’s never permanent. You can always change your business structure, provided the correct forms are filed with the state. The beauty of being the business owner is that you pick what you want. Some businesses are better as corporate entities because of the protections offered by the corporate veil, but ultimately it is your choice. As a consultant, I always push my clients towards a corporation or limited liability company because of the protections it offers its shareholders or members. You should always protect yourself from any and all litigation and financial obligations of the business, especially in this highly litigious society we live in.

After deciding on your business structure, you are ready to get the business and all your ideas down on paper, check out the business must haves for your business to succeed.

Inspirational Quote of the Day

Live video feed of Zig Ziglar speaking at the ...

“Sometimes adversity is what you need to face in order to become successful.”

― Zig Ziglar

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Jim-rohn-PASSES-AWAY

 

“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”

 

― Jim Rohn

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

peters

“If a window of opportunity appears, don’t pull down the shade.”

― Tom Peters

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Jim-rohn-PASSES-AWAY

 

“Time is more value than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.”

 

Jim Rohn

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Deutsch: Viktor Frankl

 

“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.”

 

― Viktor E. Frankl

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Peter Drucker dies at 95

 

“Company cultures are like country cultures. Never try to change one. Try, instead, to work with what you’ve got.”

 

Peter Drucker

 

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School of Wash Small Business Big Game Round 2 Giveaway

school of wash
This giveaway is Hosted by Jenn, Mom of Two Munchkins
AND
Sponsored by School Of Wash
School of Wash is a Mother-Daughter owned company that originated when the 11 year ols  daughter started selling the bath products her mother made for her at summer camp without her mothers knowledge.  Read their full story here.  The products are all Paraben-free, Talc-free, SLS-free, Sulfate-free, Sodium Chloride-free, and every order is made FRESH!  Try to find that in a product you buy at the grocery store or a big box store. 
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School of Wash has made it to Round 2 of the Intuit Small Business, Big Game contest but needs your help.  Show them some love and vote for them.
Enter the giveaway below for your chance to win an awesome Halloween Themed Prize.  The prize will be a Trick-or-Treat Pumpkin filled with seasonal scented spritzers from School of Wash. 
Jenn, Mom Of Two Munchkins was provided with a free sample of this product to review, and was under no obligation to review it.  Nor was Jenn, Mom Of Two Munchkins under any obligation to write a
positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.
Jenn, Mom Of Two Munchkins and BxChe@psk@t3 are not responsible for shipping of prize.  School Of Wash  has the sole responsibility for shipping of prize.  Prize value is approximately $330.

Other giveaways you can enter:

Inspirational Quote of the Day

Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

 

“What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives, we need to stretch our minds.”

 

Wayne Dyer

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

"Official Photograph" of Hubert H. H...

 

“Each child is an adventure into a better life – an opportunity to change the old pattern and make it new.”

 

Hubert H. Humphrey

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Brian_Tracy“You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you.”

Brian Tracy

 

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Working Mother – Free 12 Issue Digital Subscription

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Sign up for the newsletter and other great tips, and receive complimentary 12 issue digital subscription to Working Mother.

CLICK HERE to sign up and get your FREE subscription

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Michael Lebouef

“Waste your money and you’re only out of money, but waste your time and you’ve lost a part of your life.”

― Michael LeBoeuf

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

Henry Ford in 1888.

 

“Most people spend more time and energy going around problems than in trying to solve them.”

 

― Henry Ford

 

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

English: George Allen, owner of Toxteth Park, ...

“Success is what you do with your ability. It’s how you use your talent.”

― George Allen, Sr.

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Inspirational Quote of the Day

“Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, “What’s in it for me?””

― Brian Tracy

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