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Welcome to my Blog!

February 3, 2008

Welcome to asklacerte.com! As the CEO of bill.com, I am somewhat obsessed with business. Check out my bio on the left. I come from a long line of business entrepreneurs and have created several successful businesses of my own. While it is difficult and challenging, it’s also one of the most rewarding aspects of my life.

I wanted to write a blog to bring people together to talk about business. Through this blog, I hope to share my successes and insights while learning from yours. The end goal is to share some of the roadblocks I’ve hit along the way and how I’ve overcome them. The life of a small business person is never dull. Everything is always changing—from new tax and labor laws, to innovative technology that leverages your time, to new markets to carve out—and I wanted to provide a forum for small business voices and for the discovery of new opportunities. I would also love to hear about what you are doing and how you handle the day-to-day obstacles to run your business smoothly and successfully.

I believe that the web is a great equalizer in so many ways. I am most familiar with how it has changed the software world. There is a paradigm shift going on that is moving the day-to-day software that businesses use from the desktop to the web. If it hasn’t changed your life yet, it will. Web-based software, aka Software as a Service, is giving small businesses all the efficiencies of big business without any of the headaches. It’s time for people to develop solutions that help build small business and it's time for small businesses to use them. I think there is, and will continue to be, a sea change of tools for small business operators. These tools will help manage the tasks that drag down business owners and keep them from doing the things they started the company to do.

Why do I think this is all so important? First, I agree with the US government’s definition of a small business—500 employees or less—and believe that small businesses will continue to lead the growth in the US economy. There are approximately 25 million businesses with less than 500 employees in the US today. More than 18 million are sole proprietorships (single owners with no employees). Small businesses employ half of all private sector employees and represent more than 50 percent of the country’s nonfarm private gross domestic product (GDP).

But it’s tough to run a business, with the rate of failure for small businesses incredibly high. Approximately 600,000 new businesses start each year. Unbelievably, just as many close each year. According to smallbusinessnotes.com, two-thirds of new businesses with employees survive at least two years, and 44 percent survive at least four years. The results remain constant across different industries; so it really doesn’t matter what niche you’re in—running a business requires a level of passion that’s often difficult to sustain.

Even though things might get a bit tough this year, if you’re like me, and growing businesses is in your blood, then you are eager for the next twelve months and the exciting adventure the next year brings. Will it really be the year of the credit crunch? Will we all have to take cautious steps?

There is a lot of information located throughout the Internet for business owners (and employees). Just check out the list of links over on the right and stay tuned for more that I have found to be most helpful to me in running my businesses. So, if you are running a business, I'd like to help, by asking and answering the important questions and to ask the questions that keep us awake at night.

Next week, I will share some of the basics of entrepreneurship and how to get started, a kind of a Business 101. Please join me, no matter where you might be along your business journey. If you can, drop me a line or post a comment on what’s your biggest concern for 2008.

Thanks!
René Lacerte
Founder and CEO
@rlacerte

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3 Comments
  1. Kirk Crenshaw permalink

    This is great! I’m excited for you and all businesses that will profit from your knowledge.

  2. Small business people need all the help they can get. And I can’t think of anyone better equipped to provide that help than Rene. Congratulations on the launch!

  3. Susi Leach permalink

    Wow! This is great! First PayCycle, now this – you are awesome!!

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