Browsing Articles Written by

Carol Roth

Carol Roth is a radio host on WGN, a CNBC TV contributor, a ‘recovering’ investment banker & a bestselling author of The Entrepreneur Equation. You can find her on Twitter @CarolJSRoth or at She also has an action figure made in her likeness.

Should Your Small Business Hit the Road or Go “Mobile”?

Should Your Small Business Hit the Road or Go “Mobile”?

By May 11, 2017 No Comments

It is not uncommon for new small businesses to get their start without the expense of a brick and mortar presence. Transporting products directly to customers can be quite cost-effective. For example, restaurants can start with a food truck or retail stores with pop-up shops as a way to reach new customers with lower fixed costs, all while testing their business models.


5 Ways that Conventional Wisdom Can Bring Your Small Business to a Standstill

By April 27, 2017 No Comments

In 2014, Russia banned four dirty words from use in the performance arts, but U.S. small businesses should strongly consider banning these six words: "We've always done it that way." Granted, conventional wisdom says that long-lived processes make business life predictable and comfortable. But, your small business is less likely to grow if you don't move beyond old, tired ways.

This is just one example of conventional wisdom that may not be so wise for your small business. Here are 5 more.


Can You Train Employees Better than Professional Trainers?

By April 18, 2017 No Comments

Change is an essential part of any small business. Whether you need to hire more employees to accommodate growth, advance the skill levels of employees you want to promote or if you need to change processes to meet expanding business requirements, everyone in your organization needs periodic training.

Before you assume that you or knowledgeable staff members can conduct effective training in-house, consider that many subjects — from word processing to the diversity initiatives — are generally best delivered by professional trainers who know how to develop core competency levels. Don't let the costs dissuade you. If you follow certain steps to obtain high-quality training, you will get major bang for the buck from the new skills and knowledge that employees bring back to your business.


A Quick Course on Emotions Quotient (EQ) Development

By March 22, 2017 No Comments

More small business owners are aware of the importance of using a management style that incorporates emotional sensitivity with brainpower and developing your emotions quotient (EQ). However, some small business owners are naturally more about numbers than feelings, so it’s easier said than done.

The good news is that increasing your EQ is a learnable skill if you're willing to practice. If you want to be less like Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada and a bit more like Willy Wonka (well, except with the bad kids…), the following 5 tips can send you on the road toward sensitivity.


5 Things to Consider Before Allowing Personal Beliefs to Drive Small Business Operations

By February 28, 2017 No Comments

Many years ago, I learned some lessons about negotiating deals by watching how my dad managed to sell an interesting piece of furniture from our old home at an unimaginably high price. The information I gleaned is timeless, I incorporated it into my personal belief system and I will probably use it forever.

Unfortunately, not all personal beliefs have that kind of staying power, particularly within your small business. Some concepts become outdated and others are too personal to use within a diverse community of employees and customers. Think twice before you incorporate these 5 belief-based concepts into your small business.

Small Business Dress Code

6 Things to Consider When Formulating Your Small Business Dress Code

By February 10, 2017 No Comments

Aside from wearing the occasional Chicago Blackhawks jersey (especially on a long flight), I make a point of maintaining a professional appearance in public. That used to mean dark suits and long sleeves. Happily, corporate dress codes have changed in recent years.

Small business employees often expect a more relaxed policy that does not automatically fit when their companies are competing with larger companies. Establishing a dress code creates a quandary; formal attire may present a more professional appearance to customers, but employees may balk at spending money on expensive clothing or not being able to express themselves. To help you tread the line between fussy corporate and circus attire, here are six things to consider when formulating your dress code.


4 Reasons Why Small Businesses Need EQ as Much as IQ

By January 26, 2017 No Comments

Small business owners and their direct reports clearly need above-average intelligence to know how things work — from understanding the numbers to knowing every phase involved in getting their products or services to customers. Whether that knowledge comes from a MBA or experiential knowledge, a good Intelligence Quotient (IQ) is pretty much essential.