Contracts and Finance

Launching Your Business: Where to Cut Costs and When to Splurge

March 20, 2018

With the choice to work independently, you must accept the challenge that your success is tied to your business decisions. What you choose to do with your money is an important part of that challenge. Which purchases are smart investments? Which are simply a waste of money? Here are three areas where you can cut…

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How to Get Ready for Tax Season as a Small Business

March 13, 2018

Whether you go it alone, hire a tax preparation professional, or take advantage of MBO’s tax preparation and filing assistance, tax season doesn’t have to be a daunting day on your calendar. So long as you prepare ahead of time, take the proper steps, and compile the information you need, your annual tax filing will be…

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How to Write a Proposal As a Consultant

March 12, 2018

What is a proposal? A proposal is the act of offering or suggesting something for acceptance, adopting or performance. A Chinese philosopher wisely once said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” For independent professionals, that step is often writing a proposal. Mastering the details of how and when to deliver…

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6 Best Practices for Drafting an Independent Contractor Agreement

March 6, 2018

As an independent professional, contracts are an important part of your business. Not only are they important to define your work agreement, but they also provide protection to clients and help them avoid misclassification. Contract negotiation can be a difficult obstacle to beginning a new project, but establishing a legal framework will help protect you in…

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Top 5 Tax Write Offs for Self Employed Professionals

February 8, 2018

Properly managing business expenses is not just good business, it’s also a good income strategy as an independent professional. As a business of one, you will incur fixed costs that cannot be billed back to clients. You’ll also need to handle expenses such as health care, retirement funds, and other benefits typically provided by an…

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How to Create a Contractor Invoice: 6 Tips

January 19, 2018

Tracking and billing time is an important task as an independent contractor, and whatever billing method you choose, you’ll want to present a reputable, professional invoice to your clients. Follow these six tips to present a clean, professional invoice to your clients. 1. Establish a Billing Policy Creating billing policies and procedures for your business…

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Contract Bill Rate vs Pay Rate: What is the Difference?

January 10, 2018

Bill rate and pay rate are easy terms to confuse—they both factor into the decision of how much you should charge for your services as an independent contractor. When negotiating with a client at the start of a project, make sure you are clear on your rates, and if you are discussing dollars in terms of…

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How to Bid on a Project

October 17, 2017

Writing proposals to bid on projects is an integral part of running your independent business. However, the formal Request for Proposal (RFP) process can be filled with tedious details that can feel overwhelming. Due to the complexity of this process, it’s important to understand how to best assess and bid on project opportunities. Follow these four steps…

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Verbal Contracts: Understand Your Rights and Responsibilities

August 2, 2017

Entering into a verbal contract with clients is a common practice among independent professionals. Without the red tape and bureaucracy that can slow down larger businesses, independents enjoy the advantages of being flexible and agile in transactions and deals. However, while verbal contracts often simplify business, if things go sour they can end up complicating your relationship…

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How to Raise Your Billing Rate

August 1, 2017

If you are at a point in your career where you have years of experience, produce high-quality work that is backed by client recommendations, and provide services that are in demand, it may be time to consider raising your rates. Clients are looking for a trustworthy, knowledgeable, and reliable independent professional who can help them achieve…

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