3 Things You Should Know About Small Business: April 27

NEW YORK ( MainStreet) - What's happening in small business today?

1. Entrepreneurial lessons from Dick Clark. The passing of one of television's most famed personalities, Dick Clark, can provide us with many entrepreneurial lessons as he was involved with many business ventures, according to SCORE blogger and CEO of GrowBiz Media Rieva Lesonsky.

One great lesson from Clark is "work hard, but watch for lucky breaks, too," Lesonsky says. While Clark knew even as a teenager that he wanted to be in broadcasting, he saw opportunity while working at a local Philadelphia TV and radio station when the host of the predecessor to American Bandstand was arrested for drunk driving. He stepped in and the rest is history, she writes.

Another lesson Lesonsky points out is to always have a Plan B. "Clark was concerned that he'd be forced into retirement from the youth-oriented Bandstand, so he started his own production company so he would have something to fall back on. He branched out into roles as an artist manager and music publisher; he also owned record manufacturing plants and a distribution business," she writes.

A third lesson: build your brand. Clark was able to expand the American Bandstand brand into many lucrative offshoots.

2. Fix your company's LinkedIn page. More and more business relationships are being fostered through LinkedIn ( LNKD). So is your company's page up to speed?

Putting effort into your personal LinkedIn page is a no-brainer, but you should have the same zeal when thinking about your company's page, Inc.com says.

"You cannot control who sees your LinkedIn company page or at what time they're looking. So your LinkedIn company profile is your ambassador - it must make the best first impression it can for your company," by highlighting your company story, products and services, highlighting your latest news, engaging with followers and sharing career opportunities, according to Inc.comcontributor and CEO of Web Ad.vantage Hollis Thomases.

Thomases includes some necessary elements to your company's LinkedIn page such as filling out the majority of content on the overview, careers, products and services pages.

Once you've optimized the page, make the most of it, she says. For instance, be sure to link to it on your website, in emails and on other social media pages. Frequently use the status update feature to post company news, successes and other information, Thomases says.

3. Do you have an exit strategy? One of the last things that owners tend to think about is the day they want to retire and what to do with their business. Many business owners are increasingly looking into their available options when they retire, according to QSR Magazine .

There are lots of things to consider when owners decide they no longer want to run their business, such as whether to make a clean break or simply to retire from daily control and how much money they will need in retirement, which is why it's important to look at options well ahead of time.

One of the most common options is selling the business to a third party, which is usually done when you want to maximize the sale price, QSR says.

Or you can sell to your employees, which you can do over time and allows you to gradually give up control of the business, while still earning a salary.

A third option is transferring ownership to family. This is likely the preferred option of many operators, the article says.

-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

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