NASE Monthly E-Newsletter for Small Business Owners | Self Informed March-2021


Your monthly source for the latest news for your micro-business. From operations and marketing to legislative updates from Capitol Hill, SelfInformed has it all!

SelfInformed - March 2021

In this issue, read about 8 Tips to Improve Your Small Business Luck and PPP Self-Employed Application Changes.

8 Tips to Improve Your Small Business Luck

Mark Zuckerberg is a household name. He is widely recognized as one of the wealthiest CEOs in modern history. As the CEO of Facebook, most would consider Mark Zuckerberg a lucky business owner. However, his success was not without a little bit of luck. Mark Zuckerberg was sued by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss when they claimed he stole their idea for the social media giant Facebook. This lawsuit was eventually settled, but the facts of the case showed that Mark Zuckerberg took risks when he started Facebook. He also utilized the resources available to him and made a little of his own luck.

The odds of having a business venture that would compare to Facebook’s success are small, but that does not diminish the lessons we can learn from Mark Zuckerberg’s success and luck. The experts at NASE can help you with your small business needs while creating your luck and maximizing your small business’ success.

Here are some tips for improving your small business luck:

1. Be a Subject Matter Expert
The first tip to increasing your small business’ luck is to be an expert in your field. Regardless of the type of small business you operate, being the expert in your field will set you apart from your competition. A subject matter expert gains knowledge about his or her career field or product. This is achieved by staying current regarding events that affect that business. This would include laws, political shifts, and technological advancements. This may require training, attending events, social networking, or continued education.

Maintaining expert knowledge in your field of business will help you attract and retain customers. Customers and clients will come to you for advice, and if you provide knowledgeable guidance, your clients and customers will help grow your business through referrals and reviews.

2. Organize
Organization is essential for every small business owner. Organization is a broad subject that would apply to multiple areas of running a business. The best way to stay organized in business includes keeping your business space separate from your home space, both the online and physical spaces. This should consist of keeping your business bank account separate from your personal accounts and keeping household bills separate from business bills. Bookkeeping and inventory should be done routinely to avoid losing or overlooking items. This type of organization reduces errors and helps promote successful financial and physical control of your small business.

An organized business is aware of its financial position and space availability. This prevents overstocking and under-investing. An organized business is ready to review business opportunities as they become available, limiting the possibility of missing out on an opportunity. In this way, you are ready if a lucky investment opportunity presents itself. Overinvesting can be just as detrimental to revenue and underinvesting, and the best way to know your business’ investment needs is to maintain up-to-date records.

3. Build a Brand
Building a brand is something that cannot be understated. When customers or investors look to you or your company, a well-established brand is the first step in a sales pitch. An unclear brand can leave your company overlooked by both potential clients and potential investors.

To create a brand, be clear and committed to the mission and the values you and your company represent. For example, if you are an environmentally friendly business focused on selling and promoting recycled or other eco-friendly products, ensure that your company sticks with that business model. If you suddenly start selling products that are known as detrimental to the environment, you risk deviating from your brand as an environmentally friendly company. This confuses customers and investors, who may take their business and opportunity elsewhere. Stay true to your vision, and luck will be more likely to find you.

4. Invest in Your Employees
Small business owners often cannot compete with the pay opportunities of larger corporations. Being a good boss does not necessarily mean you have to give high pay. As a small business owner, a competitive salary may not be an option for you. Make up for that by being a good employer. Being a good employer means being compassionate toward your employees and invested in their lives. Try to be aware of your employees’ needs. This might mean being flexible about shifts when major life events conflict with work schedules. It might mean attending graduations or promoting student workers’ accomplishments. It may mean offering flexibility to a working parent.

Employees want to feel valued by an employer, and sometimes that intrinsic value means more to them than just a paycheck. That is not to say that you should not provide a fair wage, but if your small business does not allow you the opportunity for competitive pay, try to find other ways to show value and invest in your employees.

5. Invest in Your Community
Chances are your business will earn revenue from clients or customers in the community where you do business. In this way, your community is investing in your small business. You must show your customers and clients your appreciation for this patronage. Invest in your local community in ways that are meaningful and appropriate.

Investments in your community can be small, like allowing Girl Scout troops to set up cookie booths in front of your place of business. Or perhaps you have the financial ability to donate to a local school or scholarship fund. These investments in your community show your customers that their business helps your company promote the community. Investments in your community benefit the community where you do business and show your customers and clients that you care, encouraging them to continue to do business with you and refer their friends to you.

6. Always be Willing to Learn
It is never too late to learn something new. It is sometimes difficult to adapt to change, but laws and technology change quickly. It is essential to stay flexible to changes that may affect your business, but it is also crucial to be open to learning something new. This may include expanding your business further than its original design. If you are not opposed to new opportunities and luck will not overlook you.

When sudden changes affect your business’ livelihood, a flexible and adaptive business owner will be in a greater position to pivot and find innovative ways to adapt to changes. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic forced several businesses to shift how they do business due to lockdowns and virus exposures.

7. Be Open to Opportunity
When opportunity knocks, it may not be in the way that you anticipated. Remember to use the resources available to you to make the right choices for yourself and your business. When opportunities arise, collaborate with business partners and be open to feedback. Know your market and your own limitations, and do not be afraid to ask for help.

Often a great idea dies at conception because there is no execution available. If you have an idea for your business, do not be afraid to reach out to a business partner, an industry peer, or a partner and collaborate and innovate.

In a rapidly changing environment, the ability to innovate is a valuable skill. Be willing to discuss opportunities when they arise and collaborate for your small business’ best possible solutions.

8. Make Your own Luck
Luck is often not a four-leaf clover, or a wish blown onto the head of a dandelion. Luck is a willingness to take the risk and have a strong network to help support and guide you in your small business endeavors. Do not be afraid to make a little luck of your own.

Mark Zuckerberg did not wait for someone else to capitalize on the design for Facebook. He found partners who were willing to take the risk and help him innovate the invention. Most businesses will not have the same type of luck as Mark Zuckerberg. He had the right idea at the right time and the right resources to execute his idea. A small business does not have to be wealthy to be successful.

Success can be measured by the stability of a company, its reputation, or even the happiness of a company’s owner and workers. This success happens by making the right choices for your business. In this way, we make our own luck.

Contact Us
To learn more about improving the luck of your small business, contact the experts at NASE. Our licensed professionals will be happy to answer any questions you have.

PPP Self-Employed Application Changes

PPP Self-Employed Application Changes & NASE Supports SBA Event to Inform Self-Employed Business Owners

On March 3, 2021, the Small Business Administration announced changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for self-employed individuals.

The changes include: 

  • Self-employed business owners with no employees will be eligible for a loan equal to their 2019 or 2020 gross income, divided by 12, multiplied by 2.5. 
  • Self-employed and sole proprietors can also refinance an EIDL Loan made between January 31 and April 3, 2020. 
  • New timeframe to apply provides a dedicated 2-week window, starting Wednesday, February 24, where only businesses with fewer than 20 employees will be able to apply for PPP loans.
  • Establishes a $1 billion set aside for these businesses without employees located in low- and medium-income areas
  • Expands PPP eligibility to small business owners with non-fraud felony convictions

Find a lender here.

Frequently Asked Questions: PPP-FAQs-3.12.21.pdf (

How to Calculate First Draw Loans: How to Calculate First Draw PPP Loan Amounts (

How to Calculate Second Draw Loans: HowtoCalculateSecondDrawFAQs-3.12.21.pdf (

On Saturday, March 6, 2021, NASE CEO & President Keith Hall joined the Small Business Administration for a webinar on the recently announced (see above) changes to the PPP program specific to self-employed individuals. You can view the webinar and the informative Q&A here.

Courtesy of