New York Enterprise Report

Let's face it -- our cover boy, eagerly embracing three large beers, is probably seconds away from renal explosion, rather than great taste. Still, I like the "taming of the brew" line. The actual Shakespeare play is long on abuse and short on good times. Happily, Heartland Brewery claims a much better success rate. I've never been, sensing it lacks the requisite cabaret feel so essential to denizens of the night, but it sells more craft beer than anyone in the Northeast. I don't know what craft beer is, but judging from owner Jon Bloostein's enthusiasm, it's a money spinner.

He also offers -- and I hope my boss is reading this -- an ESOP, short for an employee stock ownership plan. Bloostein says it provides staff equity and "effectively gives them a pension." A pension! As almost everyone over 35 knows, pension and benefits are three of the sexiest words in the English language. I didn't know companies still gave pensions. It may be time to hops to it.

It's also time for business to pull itself together. A plummeting Dow and subprime horror should convince the most conservative member of the Harvard Club that the big boys are nincompoops at finance. If you ran your family's budget the way the Fortune 1000 ran its businesses, you'd be homeless. And judging from Countrywide's loans, many will be. Of course, who lends money to a credit risk?

If you're worried about lending to trusted friends, why get slaphappy when it involves strangers whose idea of money management is maxing out credit cards? Looking for a safe addiction? Try the Container Store. It's practically a religion to its salespeople. By contrast, plastic money is a danger that should carry the equivalent of a medieval chastity belt -- for buyers and lenders alike.

However, New York Enterprise Report says it's here to help. Per its editor-in-chief, NYER is written "first and foremost for business owners." He adds that "very few magazines target that specific audience." Apparently, he's never heard of Fortune or Fortune Small Business or Business Week or Business Management. I Googled that last title, so I hope it's still valid. The Internet is great; but sometimes, the "timely" info is older than John McCain.

However, there are some tips here that may help.

In the "Work Smart" section, learn how to make an irresistible direct-mail offer and what wall color reveals to clients. Some hints: blue is the color of authority, which is why the police love it. Red is strictly for retail and restaurants. Brown signals loser status, and green, historically, is meaningless. Lime green, maybe. But today, green is so overexploited in bizspeak, muted hunter green is probably, per some trendoid designer, the ultimate in power ecology. The author of the article, an architect, paints his office door a sunny yellow to convey brightness. That's very Yellow Brick Road to me, but I'm a classicist.

There's also a "tip of the issue." When it comes to staffing: "hire slowly, fire fast." This sounds like the presidential primary, whose death march is almost too much to bear. NYER recommends listing the 10 skills necessary for the job. America, take note. Not rhetoric. Not charm. Not personal aggrandizement. Let's consider the necessary requirements for holding one of the most important jobs in the world. The guy who has the most important job is Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens' doctor.

But back to business. The monthly pub has an array of offerings, including a story on "What's Your BI?" (business intelligence). It sounds suspiciously like commonsense to me, but often, having someone spell out the best computer applications or the five don't-miss marketing blogs can help. Yet the edit as a whole is a tad obvious, and the layout is shriek-worthy. I give NYER credit for trying. But in a world of Adobe PhotoShop and business whiz kids, try a little harder.


Published by: RSL Media LLC
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