David Alfano’s Top Five Podcasts for Entrepreneurs

 

  1. The Tim Ferriss Show

He’s one of the New York Times best-selling authors and wrote one of David’s favorite books, “The 4-Hour Workweek.”Now he’s creator and host of one of David’s favorite podcasts. Tim Ferriss shares how some of the world’s top performers have overcome many of man’s greatest flaws and eventually made it to the top of their game, including himself. You can listen to these tools, tips, and secrets for free on iTunes here.

 

 

 

 

 

2. The Tony Robbins Podcast

“Tony Robbins is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, philanthropist, and the nation’s #1 life and business strategist.” These podcasts cover a multitude of topics with intriguing titles such as, “Achieve Ultimate Health in 10 Days”, “Be The Last To Speak”, and “Why Do People Cheat?”. Each auditory episode is sure to put you on the path towards self-improvement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 3. Entrepreneur on Fire

If you’re at the beginning of your entrepreneurial journey, you might not feel “on fire” just yet. So have you ever wondered how other entrepreneurs, like yourself, have achieved success? In this podcast, John Lee Dumas, founder and host of Entrepreneur on Fire, interviews a new, inspiring entrepreneur each week with almost 2,000 episodes in total. So get ready to ignite and become part of “Fire Nation.”

 

 

 

 

 

4. StartUp

Starting a business is no easy feat. This contemporary, humorous, and insightful podcast definitely stands out amongst others in its category. For instance, some titles include, “Business Ain’t Yeezy” and “I’m just like my comp’ny, I’m young, scrappy, and hungry” – it’s undeniably witty and incredibly useful if you’re in the startup process. You can keep up with the series here.

 

 

 

 

 

5. Marketing Smarts

As a business owner, it’s hard enough to make time to just market your products and services, not to mention to market it all well. If you’re feeling similarly, this 30-minute weekly podcast contains in-depth interviews with real marketers giving real advice that can help you up your marketing game.

David Alfano’s Top Eight Books For Entrepreneurs

  1. Start With Why – Simon Sinek

“People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.”

You may know what you do and how you do it, but do you know why you do it? What inspires you and what can you do to inspire your audience? This book will help you and your organization find your “why”.

 

 

 

  1. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

Habits of Highly Effective People:

  1. Be Proactive
  2. Begin with the End in Mind
  3. Put First Things First
  4. Think Win-Win
  5. Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
  6. Synergize
  7. Sharpen the Saw

Now you know the habits, but how should you implement them? Take a look at Covey’s research.

 

 

  1. Good to Great – Jim Collins  

“Good is the enemy of great. And that is one of the key reasons why we have so little that becomes great. We don’t have great schools, principally because we have good schools. We don’t have great government, principally because we have good government. Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life.”

This book provides a clear model to turn any good, or even mediocre, organization into a great one. But what identifies the elite from the others? Disciplined People, Disciplined Thought, and Disciplined Action. Want more? Check out the book for more details, diagrams, and terms explained.

 

 

 

  1. Who Moved My Cheese? – Spencer Johnson

“What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”

Did you recently lose a job? End a relationship? Move into a new place? Change is inevitable and it usually frightens us. And while it may feel like the end of the world, it’s only the beginning. Johnson’s tale of two mice and two “little people” teaches us how to successfully cope with change.

 

 

 

  1. Tools of Titans – Timothy Ferriss

“The world is changed by your example, not by your opinion.”

Ferriss divides the tools among three sections – healthy, wealthy, and wise. Each section contains a breakdown of the habits and routines of some of the world’s top-notch performers. For instance, read about their morning routines, workout plans, and even their manageable diets to help you become a Titan too.

 

 

 

  1. As a Man Thinketh – James Allen

“Men do not attract that which they want, but that which they are.”

Are you working hard, but still not seeing the desired results? Try analyzing and understanding your thoughts better. Why? James Allen can tell you.

 

 

 

 

  1. The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure – Grant Cardone

“I suggest that you become obsessed about the things you want; otherwise, you are going to spend a lifetime being obsessed with making up excuses as to why you didn’t get the life you wanted.”

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a small business owner, or someone seeking to thrive, apply the 10x rule. Set goals that are 10x higher than you think you can achieve. Take actions that are 10x greater than you think you should act. Experience 10x the benefits.

 

 

 

  1. The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich – Timothy Ferriss

“By working only when you are most effective, life is both more productive and more enjoyable. It’s the perfect example of having your cake and eating it, too.”

Feeling overworked, like you never have enough time? So did Ferriss. Overworked and overtired, he shortened his workweek from 14-hour days to just 4 hours. How? Read this page turner to find out.

How To Avoid A Tax Audit

As federal and state budget deficits balloon out of control, the IRS and other taxing authorities are working harder to chase every tax dollar. Your odds of getting audited or receiving other unwelcome correspondence are climbing every year!

Responding to simple written notices can be expensive and time‐consuming, and responding to an actual audit can be even more of a financial burden, potentially resulting in hefty penalties. Even if no penalty is imposed, audits are stressful and can take several years to resolve.

Read and apply the steps below to avoid an IRS audit nightmare:

  1. Allocate income and expenses wisely. Although audits are usually chosen at random, business owners have a higher risk of being audited. So don’t understate income or overstate deductions, but be reasonable with what you allocate to these categories. If the math doesn’t add up to you, then it definitely won’t add up to the IRS.
  1. Double-check all IRS documents. When you receive any IRS documents, like 1099’s or W2’s, make sure that they are accurately and appropriately included in your tax return. You may also be required to complete additional forms (i.e. Schedule C for sole proprietorships, Form 1065 for partnerships, Form 1120-S for S corporations or Form 1120 for C corporations). Don’t forget to include these to report your business income and expenses.
  1. Let Alfano & Company advise you year-round, not just during tax time. By regularly assisting you with your financials, we can prevent any behavior that could increase the probability of being audited. In case you do get audited, though, opt in for our Audit Correspondence Plan, which can be likened to annual audit insurance. For an additional fee, we will respond to written notices from federal or state taxing authorities related to this year’s tax return.

Employee or Subcontractor – Who should you hire and why does it matter?

Most business owners require help from other individuals to successfully run their enterprise.  Often times they find themselves needing hired help to keep their business running smoothly.  Perhaps you find yourself in a similar situation; the question becomes, should you hire an employee or an independent contractor?

Sure, there are benefits to hiring subcontractors.  It will save a company on payroll taxes, benefits, and insurance.  Savings, though, must be weighed equally with risk.  It’s been said, “you can call a shark a guppy, but that won’t stop him from biting you”.  Similarly there can be serious and costly consequences to misclassifying a worker as a subcontractor when they are, according to the IRS definition, an employee.

What’s at stake?  The IRS and state Department of Labor can assess major penalties on top of taxes they failed to withhold from the worker’s pay.  In some cases, the IRS may subject an employer with misclassified employees to penalties which include 20% of all wages paid PLUS all of the Social Security and Medicare taxes which were never withheld from the employee’s pay.  The individual responsible for collecting and paying these taxes can be held personally liable for any uncollected tax, even if the company folds or files for bankruptcy.  If the IRS determines intentional misconduct or fraud an employer can face prison time and additional criminal penalties.

Clearly, this isn’t a subject to view lightly.  Take the quiz below to determine if your new hire (or current worker) is a subcontractor or employee.

Who’s In Charge?

  1. Who determines when, where, and how work should be done?

a) I set the parameters for the worker to meet.

b) The worker determines the specifics regarding timing, location, and methods of work.

2. Is there a requirement for a set number of hours of work weekly or monthly?

a) Yes, I tell the worker how many hours (s)he is expected to work during a given period.

b) No, as long as the work gets done by the agreed upon deadline the worker is free to work as little or as much as (s)he chooses during a given period.

3. Does your expectation of work to be completed require full-time dedication from the worker?

a) Yes, the workload is significant and I expect the worker to give it priority.

b)No, the workload is not so great that (s)he does not have time to complete work for other businesses.

4. Is the worker free to advertise his or her expertise and services to the general public?

a) No, I expect exclusive access to work performed by this individual.

b) Of course! I would expect the worker to be looking for jobs beyond working for my business.

5. Is the relationship considered continual or only for a specific period or project?

a) Continual – I expect this worker to be regularly available to me for the foreseeable future.

b) Period or project based – I only call upon this worker when I have a specific need to be filled.

Training

6. Do you provide training to the worker?

a) Yes, I provide training including refining his/her skills or methods of work.

b) No, I expect him/her to show up for the job fully trained and already knowledgeable regarding work that must be performed.

7. Do you control the specific method for completing an assignment?

a) Yes, we maintain a clear sequence or method for completing work that I expect the worker to follow.

b) No, as long as the work gets done (s)he is free to control his/her own procedures and methods.

Assistants & Other Workers

8. Is the worker free to engage others to perform services for the company?

a) No, I expect the individual to complete all of the tasks him/herself and (s)he is not authorized to delegate work to individuals outside of our organization.

b) Yes, I have no control over who the worker may hire to assist with completing the assignment.

9. If the worker does engage an assistant or additional worker, who pays those wages or fees?

a) I would; this would be an amount above the worker’s agreed upon pay.

b) The worker would; if (s)he decides to pay for assistance in completing the work it would have to come out of the money already being paid to him/her and this would be solely his/her responsibility.

Money &  Materials

10. Are payments to the worker based on a period of time (hourly, monthly, weekly, etc.) or based on a contract or invoice by job or task?

a) Period of time – I pay the worker for hours worked or based on a specific time schedule.

b) Contract or invoice – the worker bills me per job or based on our agreed upon contract and I must pay according to the bill’s terms.

11. Do you provide any benefits to the worker?

a) Yes, I pay for some or all of the following: insurance, paid time off, auto mileage, or other “perks”.

b) No, I only pay the worker for tasks performed and offer no benefits.

12. Do you furnish the worker with tools and materials?

a) Yes, all that is required for the worker to complete the task is him/herself.

b) No, the worker must be prepared with everything necessary to get the job done.

How’d You Score?

Add up all of your As and all of your Bs.  If you clearly have more As than Bs you have definitely hired an employee; if you clearly have more Bs than As you’ve engaged a subcontractor.  If your As and Bs are too close to call you probably need to spend a little more time reviewing the specifics of your relationship with the worker to determine how best to classify him or her.  The article found here from the IRS website may prove to be very helpful.  If you’re still unsure we’re happy to help!  E-mail us to set up a time when we can discuss the specifics of your situation.

Now – just knowing if you’ve hired an employee or subcontractor is great, but how do you handle each of these scenarios for taxes?  Don’t worry we’ve got you covered!  Contact us today to find out about our payroll and 1099 processing services.