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  • Starting a business is always very exciting. There is a sense of fulfillment and freedom that comes with being your own boss and bringing your ideas to life that every person should have the opportunity to experience. Although, along with great reward, entrepreneurship comes with considerable risk. The risks can be costly and take a mental, emotional, and financial toll on the brave souls who dare to blaze their own trail.
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    Black Connect has partnered with NorthOne  to drive better money management for entrepreneurs, small businesses, and freelancers. We sat down with the team at NorthOne to discuss their approach to banking for small businesses. Black Connect:  Let's talk about the problem.   What are the current pain points in the corporate banking industry? NorthOne:  Our Co-Founder and CEO, Eytan Bensoussan, grew up in a family of small business owners. As a child, he remembered that they’d work nights and weekends to make sense of their business finances. Years later, he worked at a large management consulting firm that served some of the biggest banks in the world. It became clear that banking wasn’t evolving at the same pace as small businesses. While small business owners were finding new ways to run their companies online, financial institutions continued doing things as they’d always done. So he quit his job and worked to solve this problem. The mission was simple: create a bank that would remove the painful back-office financial management work for business owners, so that they can focus on what really matters. Black Connect: And how is NorthOne the solution?  What does NorthOne do? And how are you different from other banking services? NorthOne:  NorthOne is a full-featured banking platform built for any American small business, freelancer or startup. While any business builder can use NorthOne, we focus on folks who need a fast way of getting their banking done from anywhere. NorthOne has a number of other convenient features that small businesses use to organize their finances. NorthOne Web Banking and The NorthOne Mobile App allow customers to easily send ACH and wire payments. Customers can quickly set up an unlimited number of Envelopes in a NorthOne Account to organize business expenses such as rent, taxes, or payroll. The NorthOne Mobile App can deposit checks of up to $7,500, up to $15,000 per month, powered by Ingo Money. Accounts also connect to a number of useful apps like Stripe, Square, Shopify, QuickBooks, and more. If support is needed, the NorthOne Customer Care team is available through the in-app chat feature, email, or by scheduling a call6. It's all part of our mission to make banking faster, easier, and better for America’s business builders. Cash is a reality for business owners and we don’t see that changing anytime soon. It was important for us to make sure that NorthOne was cash friendly. With Northone, you can withdraw cash at any Cirrus branded ATM location (+1,000,000 locations across the US, +2M worldwide), including MoneyPass® ATMs, and load cash at any Green Dot location (+90,000 locations across the US). The NorthOne Banking App is simple to use and accessible on your mobile device. We take pride in being radically transparent—by providing clear and honest communication, you’ll never be surprised or confused by unknown fees or complicated language. Because we believe finances should work for you. Black Connect: Most of our members are entrepreneurs and NorthOne is seen as one of the go-to banking products for founders, how do you ensure your products best impact entrepreneurs? NorthOne:  NorthOne has the features of a traditional full-service bank, with the simplicity and convenience of a modern digital bank. Most importantly, our pricing is fully transparent and easy to understand. We only charge 2 fees to customers - a flat fee of $10 a month for unlimited banking and $15 for sending and receiving a domestic wire transfer. NorthOne does not charge customers overdraft or NSF (non-sufficient funds) fees. We believe that business builders need to understand their costs. That’s why we made our pricing simple, without hiding fees in fine print. Also, you don’t need to select from dozens of banking packages or worry about paying for each transaction. NorthOne was created with the idea that you shouldn’t need a finance degree to run a small business. We provide easy integration with some of the most popular accounting, eCommerce, and payment processing or point-of-sales software and tools, like QuickBooks, PayPal, and Stripe. We also help bookkeepers complete their jobs faster. Every transaction has context so your bookkeeper won’t need to call you to ask the what, when or why for each purchase. Black Connect: Given your incredible work with so many startups, what tips would you have for entrepreneurs when it comes to managing their money? NorthOne:  Building your business, creating jobs and serving your community is what you do. It’s hard work. NorthOne makes the hardest parts of running your business easy. Focus on the road ahead, we’ve got your back. Being able to do everything online allows small business owners to handle their finances at the speed of their company. By helping small business owners across the country have a better understanding and control of their finances, we’re helping to break the barriers to success for small businesses. Small businesses contribute nearly half of the GDP. Over half of employment in America comes from small businesses. We’re trying to make life easier for the people who make America run. Finally, you shouldn't spend your time waiting on the phone or in-line at a branch for your bank to provide the support you need. NorthOne customers can get world-class support without ever having to step foot into a bank branch. Our Customer Care team is available to answer any questions through the in-app chat feature or via email Monday to Sunday, 8am to 10pm ET. Customers also have the option to schedule a call at a time that is most convenient for them. We want you to save your time to build your own business. Black Connect: Is NorthOne FDIC-Insured? NorthOne:  Yes, deposits made to your NorthOne Small Business deposit accounts are FDIC-insured by The Bancorp Bank, Member FDIC. This means that your deposits are FDIC insured up to $250,000 through The Bancorp Bank; Member FDIC. Black Connect: Is NorthOne safe? NorthOne:  Keeping your money and information safe is hugely important to us. We secure your account and personal information with biometric authentication, and fraud monitoring so you can rest easy, knowing you’re protected. We take privacy very seriously. We never store or maintain any sensitive personal information, and will only communicate with you through secure channels. NorthOne is trusted by over 190,000 businesses to keep their money safe. Funds in the Account are FDIC insured to at least $250,000 through The Bancorp Bank, Member FDIC. Also, if your card is lost or stolen, you can lock all account activity and order a new card in seconds using our card freeze feature. Finally, NorthOne App allows you to use Touch ID™ or Face ID™ to log in, send payments, and view sensitive details. Black Connect: Can our members open a NorthOne Business Banking account if they're not a US citizen or resident? NorthOne: At this time, NorthOne Business Banking is only open to US citizens and residents who have a valid Social Security number. However, the company is looking to expand its services in the future. Black Connect: What apps does NorthOne Business Banking integrate with? NorthOne:  You can connect your NorthOne Business Banking account to these platforms and more: Expensify Freshbooks Quickbooks Shopify Wave Square Stripe PayPal Shopify Amazon Uber Etsy Gusto Airbnb   Listen to the Black Connect podcast featuring NorthOne for more information on the Black Connect and NorthOne partnership. Black Connect Members get a 3-month free trial with NorthOne + $50 cashback. Click here to get started.    
    Why You Need These 7 Personalities On Your Team If You're an Entrepreneur Every entrepreneur and business owner needs the right people on their team to be successful. It doesn't matter how viable your business idea is. Without the right team, your idea could never come to fruition, or your business might not reach its maximum potential. A winning team has the right mixture of individuals with different personalities, skills, resources, and work styles. For a team to be successful, each person must play their position.  Each person fills a unique role that contributes to the overarching business goal.  The most successful businesses have a melting pot of personalities. Personalities You Need On Your Team   #1. The Strategist The Strategist is an essential member of every team. She or he is a visionary and leader. The group relies on this personality for direction because the Strategist creates the road map to success and minimizes risks. You can think of the Strategist as a professional opportunist. She or he can identify a need in the market and come up with a business plan to capitalize on it. The Strategist is a thinker who can refine an abstract idea into an executable plan of action and help you outperform your competitors. Duties of the Strategist  The Strategist makes significant decisions that impact every area of the business.  The success of the team lies on the Strategist's shoulders, so she or he must be decisive and a clear and effective communicator. The duties of the Strategist include: Develop strategic plans  and objectives Identify problems and proffer workable solutions Hiring and leading senior team members Budgeting C-Level executives are often the Strategists on any team, with titles such as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), President, or Executive Director, depending on the business structure.   #2. The Executioner The Executioner brings the vision of the strategist to life. She or he is responsible for the execution of the steps in your action plan and handles the day to day operations of your business. The Executioner is good at managing people and knows how to interact with different personalities and skillsets in order to bring out the best performance of each team member. This personality has a reputation for being disciplined, organized, and reliable.  The Executioner is diligent and streamlines tasks to work efficiently. The Executioner's high productivity makes him or her an indispensable member to every team. Executioners can be found working as the Chief Operating Officers (COO) or  Executive Director in a business.   #3. The Geek The Geek is another unique personality you should have on your team. This person knows and loves all things tech and ensures that your business is utilizing the latest technology for better efficiency. The Geek's lifestyle revolves around their passion for technology. She or he often prefers to interact with computers over people, which can make the Geek socially awkward. The Geek is a problem solver who thrives on a challenge.  This personality loves learning and is meticulous at understanding the glitch in the matrix. The Geek will leave no stone unturned to resolve tech-related issues and use technology to grow your business.  The best role on your team for a Geek is Chief Technology Officer, IT Supervisor, or IT Compliance Officer.   #4. The Hustler  As the name sounds, The Hustler is a business-savvy team member who sees dollar signs.  The Hustler can make a dollar out of fifteen cents.  Whatever the Hustler does is geared towards creating more revenue for the business. This personality will always strive to strengthen the company's culture, ignite the team's passion, and update revenue models. Hustlers are great persuaders. Their gift of gab and charming personality can disarm even the most robust customer or investor.  The Hustler is persistent, a go-getter with a growth mindset. She or he is extroverted and knows how to make the right connections and attract sales. No matter the situation, the Hustler will think on his or her feet to find the right angle to close the deal. The Hustler's focus is on generating revenue for your business.  She or he knows how project costs, sales, and expenses and understands how sales and other financial data impact your business in the short-term and long run.  Hustlers are best suited as sales directors, business development managers, fundraisers, and sales managers.   #5. The Fixer The Fixer works closely with the Executioner.  This Olivia Pope personality is resourceful and offers creative solutions in the face of the direst circumstances.  Fixers dwell behind the scenes and often have a no-nonsense reputation.  The Fixer believes that perception is the reality and will strive to keep your business scandal-free by paying attention to details and thinking outside the box to quickly resolve any crisis.  The Fixer scrutinizes and analyzes your business decisions from a crisis management perspective.   These problem-solvers are best fitted for the role of Crisis Manager, Brand Manager, Reputation Manager, Communications Director, Public Relations Director, Customer Service Manager, Human Resources Manager, Compliance Officer   #6. The Extrovert The Extrovert is the attention-seeking personality on every team. They love social media and opportunities to mix and mingle. The Extrovert tends to have large social circles, and are comfortable with public speaking and being the center of attention. Extroverts are friendly and expressive and enjoy interacting with other people. They make great team players and usually play a leading role in group projects.  Extroverts can also help strengthen your team by organizing parties, outings, and other activities to increase team spirit and boost company morale. Some of the best roles for Extroverts are Brand Ambassador, Social Media Manager, Sales Representative, and Customer Service Representative.   #7. The Introvert The Introvert is the strong silent type. They don't act in haste.  Instead, they analyze available information and deliberate before making a decision. To the Introvert, being around large groups of people is physically draining; this is why they like working alone or in small groups. The Introvert tends to listen more than she or he speaks. The Introvert is a good team leader in a more complex environment because she or he remains calm under pressure and analyzes a situation before deciding on the appropriate response. The Introvert is intensely focused and hardly gets distracted. When it comes to attention to detail, the Introvert tops the list. The Introvert's work ethic is unparalleled. They will not settle for mediocrity with even the most basic task. The Introvert may not speak much in a meeting. They are listening intently and analyzing the information being discussed. The Introvert is flexible and can lead as well as follow.  They perform well in supervisory and managerial roles or in an administrative capacity. Here are some of the benefits of having this personality on your team. Introverts hardly get distracted when working on a task Introverts are innovative and creative thinkers They are great listeners and require less supervision Introverts are calm when under pressure Above all, they are well organized and prepared You will find introverts working as legal analysts, business analysts, research & development directors, content writers, executive assistants, administrative assistants, shipping managers, and logistics managers. Conclusion You need different personalities on your team to achieve the best results for your business.  As a business owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that each team member's personality and contributions to the team is understood and respected.  Every person on the team should feel valued. Maintain clear and constant communication with your team to be sure that everyone is working towards the same goal and understands their role in achieving stated objectives.  If your business is missing any of these personalities, post your business opportunity to develop a winning team.  Once you have all the players in position, plan to win!  
  • If you want a healthy dose of #BlackExcellence, just visit Black Connect’s new freelancer platform, FreelanceMe. Black Connect’s freelance feature serves at the point of contact between qualified professionals and business owners in need of assistance.
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