What Is Business? Pt 1

When the understanding of a phenomenon is not known misunderstanding and misinterpretation is unavoidable; therefore application will be disjointed and misplaced! The title of this article I believe is the most misconstrued of the cardinal questions related to the marketplace especially by Christians! The reason is not farfetched; Christians go to the wrong sources to look for its definition, therefore, they’d certainly be misinformed which can result to destiny malformation in the marketplace.

Arguably, there are only two dictionaries in the world: The Bible and others. The Bible is the only “Assured” book that contains the express will of God; that’s why it is regarded as the hand book of life, and by extension the handbook of business. This presupposes that if you want to know the express will of God concerning “What is Business” and other related issues that deal with business; the right and definite place to go is the bible.

Sadly, many Christian business professionals and entrepreneurs – nay, would-be Christian business practitioners seem to believe that the bible has nothing or little to say about business, so they invariably gravitate towards secular sources for the definition of business.

So, what is Business?

Let’s first explore first some of the popular definitions of business that has moulded the culture of business practitioners across the world. The Longman dictionary of Contemporary English gives an illusionary definition that had deluded many. It says business is “The activity of making money by producing or buying and selling goods, or providing services.” The WordWeb Dictionary defines business as the “The activity of providing goods and services involving financial and commercial and industrial aspects.”

Human beings are creatures of emotion. Man is driven by his believes and values ingrained in his heart, even though he may sometime not be aware of it. The believe that business is about making money by providing products and/or services is what had been the driving force behind the passion of many business people, which have alienated mankind from the purpose for which God created business. Sadly, this is the bane of many business practitioners. The fruit or product of this kind of worldview is self-conceited and self-serving business people.

If you agree that God is the creator of the earth and the rest of the universe; then you’d also agree that He is solely responsible for the rules that govern the universe! One distinguishing character of God is that He is an intentional God. He created everything (including business) on and for a purpose. In this article, I’ll be spotlighting God’s definition of business. The surest clue to understanding this is in discerning the purpose why He created business. In this follow up article, I’ll explore what business is truly all about.

The starting point to this puzzle is to go to the very beginning; where God established His purpose of business enshrined in his cardinal purpose for man. The purpose of business is divine in nature: business exists to fulfill the Creation Mandate in Genesis 1:28,

“God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply! Fill the earth and subdue it! Rule over… “

The cardinal purpose of man is to rule God’s physical universe – known as creation mandate. Given the Creation Mandate as the prime mandate of man, then everything relating to the life of man must find its purpose in this mandate. Therefore business is a tool to enable man to rule. If the purpose of man is to rule God’s physical creation, then all human activity must relate to man’s responsibility to rule. Therefore work is, and must be, a means to rule.

Why Should Your Business Benefit From Cloud Computing?

It’s important for a business to utilize its resources in the best possible manner. It’s also important to economize operations and engage in cost-cutting measures. Both of these goals were not easy to meet earlier as businesses did not have the means to leverage the internet fully. The scenario is completely changed these days with cloud computing helping redefine the way a business is run. So, what exactly is all the fuss about the cloud and how does it help businesses across industry verticals? Well, it’s a unique arrangement of doing business or conducting day-to-day operations even without investing anything substantial in the infrastructure.

Cloud computing lets businesses get delivered with apps over the internet and use any web browser to run them. Such apps tend to be business, industry and process-specific and they can also be accessed from any smart device. Which means, there is absolutely no need to invest in any type of software or hardware to run the business. So, your business is saved those big investments that it would otherwise do in desktop apps or software. This way, it helps save a lot of money that often goes into buying expensive software to run the business. Essentially, the cloud brings a cost-effective way of running the operations to help businesses.

So, now a business need not pay for the software; it can however pay just a fraction of the cost and use the same. In a way, a business won’t have to invest in either buying, installing or configuring any kind of helpful software. In a way, businesses are saved all those expenditures that were once considered essential to manage the infrastructure. It’s quite clear that the cloud has a lot of capacity and it can support a variety of processes for many entities across industry verticals. This is why more businesses want to leverage the cloud and realize their objectives in a cost-effective manner.

Quite clearly, the cloud has changed the way businesses are run; it has made infrastructure a lot easier for businesses. So, it makes a great sense for businesses to invest in a feature-rich and cloud-based CRM system and realize their goals in a timely and desired manner. Such a system is important to streamline processes and automate operations. It’s also about ditching manual efforts and making the business more efficient. Such a system will help businesses keep track of every opportunity and every customer. It keeps businesses up-to-date with their customer information thereby boosting their decision-making process.

We can clearly see how a top CRM helps businesses at many fronts. Your business however should understand the utility of using only a cloud-based and domain-leading product to stay on top of the competition. Salesforce professional services will help businesses get the most out of their investment in a CRM system. From implementation to integration to development – these services will play an important role in every sphere of the business. Your business should then trust only experts to get the most out of their CRM investment. Only this can help it add more capabilities and stay ahead of the curve.

Laser Engraving Business – Is It Right for You?

A laser engraving business is a very profitable business you can start from your home. Have you ever thought of it? If you are looking for a way of pulling out of formal employment, laser engraving offers a great opportunity for you to venture into business. If you are so creative, laser engraving business is right for you. Even if you are not naturally a creative person, the laser will enable you to develop your creativeness.

What’s laser engraving?

Laser engraving is simply the marking and cutting of materials using a laser system. A laser system works like a printer. A laser is a raw beam or heat energy directed to a specific area where an engraving is performed. It takes seconds for a laser beam to create a permanent engraving on any material.

There are many companies that manufacture laser engraving machines worldwide. But the best laser systems I have known are made in the USA. That’s where the laser engraving technology started and spread in the rest of the world. If you need a laser engraving system that won’t frustrate you, I recommend buying one from the pioneers of this technology.

What do you need to venture into a laser engraving business?

To start a laser engraving business, you need the following:

1. Business plan.

A business plan is a great way of defining your business and identifying your goals. You should prepare a business plan. Success in any business requires good planning. It helps you to raise money. It also provides you with milestones to gauge your success. It should be the first step in your laser engraving business venture.

2. Laser engraving system.

To venture into an engraving business, you must buy a laser engraving system. Laser systems are costly. Good laser engraving machines range from $8,000 up to over $45,000, depending on the size and energy. That’s not little money at all. It could be a lifetime investment to most people. So you should invest in a system that won’t let you down. The good thing is that it’s a one-time investment. Good laser systems last long.

3. A computer.

You need a good computer in your laser engraving business. You may use a desktop or a laptop. Any Windows 2000 upwards, XP or Vista operating system is recommended.

4. Graphic software.

A designing software program is a must-have in your engraving business. Laser engraving systems are designed to run on most Windows-based graphic software programs like CorelDraw, Adobe and AutoCad. But CorelDraw is what most people use in laser engraving.The laser systems come with drivers that print images from any of these programs.

5. Creativity.

People who flourish most in a laser engraving business are those who are creative, sales-oriented and think outside the box. As an engraver, you must always be on the lookout for offering new products and services. The laser system is a versatile machine. With it, you can only be limited by your imagination.

There are numerous products you can produce and put on the market. To do this effectively, perfecting your designing skill in the software program you are using is important.

6. Marketing.

There is no business that can prosper without effective marketing. You have to do a lot of marketing for your engraving business. Visual advertising is so important. People need to see your engraving and cutting examples to really appreciate them.

You have to determine your signature samples, which you can mass produce and send to prospects. They should exhibit the great engraving and cutting capabilities of your laser engraving equipment. You may also customize them as necessary.

Create strong personal relationships to establish a firm foundation for your laser engraving business. Networking is a very good cost-effective marketing technique. Spread the word about your business through networking.

You may also use trade shows to exhibit your products

and services to your prospects. It’s good to target different types of trade shows with specific related products.

Creating a website for your engraving business is a great way to get customers. By establishing your business online, you expand your client base from your immediate geographical area to the rest of the world.

Using the word of mouth is so effective. It’s cost free. It’s easy. Everyone is capable of trying it out. Do it together with flyers and business cards. I like this marketing technique. It’s good to pick the contacts like a telephone number and email address of the people you talk to for business. You may ask them to send to them a newsletter which may eventually turn them into real customers.

What engraving business opportunities can you tap?

There are a number of laser engraving business opportunities. They include among others electronics engraving, marble and stone etching, wood engraving and cutting, logo engraving, medical part marking, photo engraving and barcode engraving. There are also other opportunities. They include laptop customization, signage, wedding memorabilia, corporate giveaways, glass etching, nameplates, toys and games, laser cut cards and invitations, photo frames and albums, wooden models, jewelry and much more.

Engraving services are needed in various industries, markets or occupations. You can explore the following fields to get customers for your products:

- Clothing designers

- Automobile dealers

- Carpenters

- Churches and other religious organizations

- Hospitals

- Home builders

- Jewelers

- Gift shops

- Manufacturing plants

- Restaurants

- Non-profit organizations

- Zoos

- Libraries

- Recreational centres

- Event centres like stadiums

- Schools of all levels

- Interior designers

- Private businesses

- Architectural design firms

- Individuals… and much more

What materials can you use in your business? Ideally, the laser system can etch and cut on numerous materials. The commonest ones are acrylic, wood, rubber, stone, glass, paper, fabric, ceramic, plastic, marble, tile, press-board, slate, granite and leather. You can explore it’s capability to laser engrave on many other materials around you.

Why should you start an engraving business?

1. Profitability.

It is very profitable. An engraved product costs more than twice the cost of its raw material. Products and services engraved on a laser system are on high demand. Most people pay back the money invested in the laser machine within a year.

2. Creative freedom.

A laser engraving business allows the freedom you will rarely find in any other business. You can create what you want. You are only limited by your imagination. Virtually, anything you can imagine and design can be turned into a real object with a laser system.

3. Flexibility.

You may choose to work part-time while maintaining your full-time job. You can also work the hours you want. If you have a full-time job, this is the time to save money. Invest it in a laser engraving business. You will be able to slowly grow your business right from your home. Finally, it becomes a full-time job

4. Low running costs.

Although laser systems cost much money, running an engraving business does not require high running costs like in other businesses. The laser machine can last a long time without making any repairs. And by the time it gets old, you will have made a lot of money.

5. Small manufacturing plant.

There are many people with laser systems. But very few of them know that it’s a small manufacturing plant. Most people limit themselves to engraving traditional items. These are items like plaques, awards, signage and photo frames. But the laser system can do much more than that. Just explore into its other capabilities. You will live to wonder throughout your life.

Conclusion

Starting a laser engraving business is very profitable. To effectively benefit from it, it’s advisable to invest in a very good laser system. Buy a system with a higher wattage. Speed and working area matter a lot in a laser engraving business. Have a plan to clearly understand your start-up costs, business line and profitability.

What laser system would you recommend for starting a profitable laser engraving business?