I‘ve been helping entrepreneurs and business owners like you for more than 40 years — mostly from within our Business Power Tools software apps and templates, and thru my blogs and book, "Business Black Belt."   My “Hero’s Journey” started In the early ’80s, I was the electronics buyer and a copywriter for the Sharper Image catalog. Later, I also sold some really cool word-processors in Silicon Valley. After Macs and PCs became popular, I started my own business creating sales literature for tech companies. A friend had a deal going to sell his engineering software to Apple. They wanted to see his business plan to be sure his company would stay in business to provide future upgrades and support. At the time, I viewed a business plan as an elaborate brochure that sold his concept to people at all levels, and responsibilities with various perceptions, biases, and interests. (I learned that from selling word-processors.) We got the deal. Over the next year, people came to me with some brilliant ideas, but their plans weren’t getting funded. I helped them fill in the missing parts to succeed. Along the way, I saw that business plans have a fundamentally universal structure. Hmmm…    What if I took all the content I’d developed, redacted everything proprietary, but filled in the blanks with a variety of customizable multiple-choice options, and offered it as a software template that many people could use?    This became BizPlanBuilder, the first of its kind, and my new company took off!    Inspired to help others build businesses that would make our world a better place, we became our own Guinea pigs seeking to remove as many common mistakes and as much unnecessary BS as possible, and crafted tools for others building businesses to make our world a better place.    We followed-up with MarketingBuilder, which picked-up where BizPlanBuilder left off, then we went even further with PRBuilder which included sample press release templates… In another direction, we added EmployeeManualBuilder and SafetyPlanBuilder full of actual policies and procedures.     Altogether, we had 10 products in about 3,500 retail stores and built a $12 million company with 30 employees… (All that to say, I've been down the road you're on. I didn't just make this stuff up!)     Today, all of our products have been integrated into a streamlined and unified online toolbox/dashboard. And we’re the leader in business development software templates that help you build your business.     I also like dogs, kick-boxing, flying airplanes, writing, walking on the beach at sunset, candlelight dinners, and red wine... :-)

Why Should I Buy From You?

Excerpted from the book on mindful business management, Business Black Belt. The reputation you build for the future is more valuable than the profit you earn today. Your character plays a crucial part in completing a sale. It’s much easier for customers to buy from you when they buy because of you, not in spite…

Video – Thoughts on Image & Branding for Your Company

Business Power Tools founder and BizPlanBuilder business plan software template creator Burke Franklin consults on writing a business plan — What to think about as you edit the “Image & Branding” section of your business plan and what investors and lenders (crowdfund, angel, venture capital, SBA) look for as they consider funding your startup or…

Video – Some Things to Think About As You Start a Business

Business Power Tools founder and BizPlanBuilder business plan software template creator Burke Franklin consults on writing a business plan — What to think about as you edit the “Marketing Strategy” section of your business plan and what investors and lenders (crowdfund, angel, venture capital, SBA) look for as they consider funding your startup or growing…

Selling for a Change

Excerpted from the book on mindful business management, Business Black Belt. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink… Try salting the oats. ~ Anonymous Selling is often not just convincing someone to buy your product or service but to change what they already have or what they are doing…

Selling 3.0

Excerpted from the book on mindful business management, Business Black Belt. What if your customers already want to buy? Your job then, as a good salesperson, is to engineer the deal. Sales techniques we learned in the past are appalling and ineffective, yet many are still in use — let’s revisit the sales process to…