Business owners should assess their risk of damage from a catastrophe and review their insurance coverage to ensure they are covered in a disaster, writes Donna Fenn. Developing a communications strategy, backing up data and testing a disaster plan are also key, she writes.
Hotel executives are starting to plan for a more positive future amid signs the industry is rebounding from a couple of tough years. But the strategies differ depending on the type of hotels. Marriott, Starwood and other major hotel chains are looking at international expansion plans and some are experimenting with partnerships with independent hoteliers.
Small businesses nationwide are debating whether the time is right to add employees. Many are beginning to see an increase in business but are still cautious that the recovery isn't in full swing. "We've got to make sure what we do is measured," said Marilynne Franks, CFO of Blinds.com, which is considering hiring 10 call-center workers. "We'll take chances here and there, but we're not going to bet the farm."
President Barack Obama met with small-business owners including Buffalo Wild Wings franchisees Bobby Pancake and Steve Wheat on June 11. The business partners were invited to Washington after receiving the National Entrepreneurial Success Award from the Small Business Administration. Pancake raised the topic of the challenges of accessing more bank loans with the president.
Twitter's new service, which lets users tag tweets with a location, could be the first step to business-listings pages that will contain all the tweets about a certain location, writes Lisa Barone, who adds that this is a development to watch. "If Twitter were to create business listings and then find a way to allow SMBs to claim them and engage with people ... Google could see their local dominance in serious question," she writes.