A few years ago science, as a factor in commerce, was little known and less appreciated. Be absolutely honest. No, it s not easy to do, but you can see where innovation and new ideas are coming from and how they might change the face of your industry. You may protest that some industries don't work that way, and it is hard for a newcomer to change the rules.

Do you lose to competitors or beat yourself?

I successfully use advertising in specific industry trade magazines to sell my books, speaking services, and business-owner boot camps. No, you won t have to be stuck in a cubicle all day long, eat lunch at the office cafeteria, spend hours in traffic during rush hour, hit the gym at the same time as everyone else and wait in line for the next available treadmill. The average Fortune 500 company executive works between fifty and sixty hours per week. Then there are ideas that fall into the same old, same old category.

As a business owner, what are your top three priorities?

The most formidable barrier to progress has always been the senseless opposition of those to whom it would be of the greatest benefit. A longer-term loan, up to 20 years, may be used to purchase a piece of long-lasting capital equipment. The most important part of a plan intended for management consumption is probably in the financials. (That s doubly true if, as is the case with many entrepreneurs, both descriptions apply to you.) Collateral is just something the banker can seize and sell to get back some or all of the money you ve borrowed in the event that everything goes wrong and you can t pay it back with profits from operations.

Here's a quick way to solve the customer service problem

Most small business owners and managers think of themselves as hard workers instead of leaders. Your plan shows how you will get from here to there. Think of something as common and cheap as a cigar, get up an imitation for the children, have your enterprise stamped upon it, and it will go from one end of the land to the other. In particular, these other companies will include suppliers of goods and services, customers that adapt or combine its offerings for others and companies that act as development partners.

Is Marketing your company's main focus?

Want to double your business? In this case, even though the margins will be smaller than they would if you were buying larger quantities, you will still make a profit on each sale. The small-business arena is one of those areas where the government has made strides in doing something helpful. Remember, training is not an informational meeting or a lecture from the boss.

Some people excel at sales and some don't - which one are you?

Remember, the tools are there to guide you and not the other way around. A sales manager can redirect the activities of salespeople immediately, and an accounting manager can make immediate changes in bookkeeping practices. It does not require a magic key to unlock the door to business efficiency. It is your job to make sure the world sees the real you, and that this mental representation of your organization is close to the image you want to project.