"Dr. Bisa", as she is affectionately called, is definitely a woman to behold! Determination and confidence are just a couple of attributes that explain how Bisa Batten Lewis, EdD is one Moxie professional. She is Founder and Managing Partner of an educational consulting firm, Ideal Early Learning, and a curriculum company, W.I.N.G.S Curriculum. She is a published author of education and parenting articles, college textbooks, children's books, early childhood curriculum, adult training curriculum, early learning handbooks and more.
With a wealth of information and great advice to share with women who find themselves wanting to take the shortcut to success, I sat down with the Education Expert, to get her insider's secrets to success and why success is more than a destination. Check out our interview below.
When did you decide you would get your EdD in Adult Education?
In undergrad, I loved math. I changed my major four times before settling on education. I remember when I was studying computer science we would learn a program and soon after the program would become obsolete. Change was so frequent and constant and I knew that I could handle it, but I had to make sure it was what I wanted to do.
You're a successful business woman. Where did you get your entrepreneurial spirit from?
I was inspired by my grandfather, who had no college education and little formal education, but owned several successful businesses, properties, and was quite wealthy during his time. When I was a little girl I would sell candy to other students. I supplied a demand to the military kids who did not have access to the same type of candy that I had. I did not know it back then, but I always had a business mindset and an ability to see opportunities for business.
Do you have advice for women who are just starting out with their own business?
Yes. You don’t have to pay someone to do something you can learn to do yourself. You can save so much in overhead if you try and involve yourself in as much of your business as possible. You can always pay someone to do your payroll or marketing, but you can put time in and learn some things for yourself.
What do you think are some of the common mistakes women make when starting their business?
Some start without being prepared. They just jump out because of someone else’s story or success. Every successful business owner has to pay their dues. You will not just instantaneously start a business and within 30 days, have a thriving scaled business. You have to be patient and resilient.
What one life lesson would you like to share with women?
There are no shortcuts in life. If you are looking for something that will get you something you truly desire quickly or with very little effort, it most likely will not get you respect. For instance, when searching for a doctoral program, some choose less reputable institutions and when among colleagues they often find themselves in precarious situations where they don't even feel confident sharing where they earned their doctorate. If you're going to work that hard, make it count and be proud of how and where you earned your education! Choosing educational and career opportunities that are fulfilling avoid the need to overcompensate to prove one's relevance.
Also, don’t try to be something you are not. Do not buy-in to the notion of only looking successful and not trying to be successful. You have to be confident and be both. Also do NOT try and impress others, but keep focused and work hard to establish yourself. A true professional allows her work to speak for itself!
That's definitely great and MOXIE advice - as Oprah would say, a 'tweetable moment'. You can find Dr. Bisa leading certification programs, in the classroom and keeping us in the know on her website and you can find her on Twitter and Facebook too!
Progressive discipline is a subject that does seem ominous and threatening - quite honestly. But disciplining an employee is a part of management. At some point in your career you will be faced with the unenviable task of delivering discipline to an employee due to poor performance or behavioral concerns.
I often get asked about the best ways to handle this so I am glad you took a moment to check this post out. I will answer a few questions you might have and take away some of the guess work.
If you don't know, the bulk of my Human Resources (HR) experience is Employee Relations. I assist other HR professionals and business leaders with constructing documentation to support their progressive discipline process - mainly within the corporate work-space.
So what is 'Progressive Discipline"? Let’s go over the standard progression. Now, I am not going to get in the number of verbals or written warnings that should be given before moving on to the next level, but I promise to go over the details in another installment. The standard guide, which I feel is a good outline for progressive discipline, is as follows:
Verbal Discussion - You have a very specific conversation with the employee privately regarding the concern. Usually, this one-on-one conversation does the trick. Although it was just a verbal discussion, you still have documentation that you had the conversation for later reference.
Written Warning - This is a documented conversation that requires some specifics. Make sure the concern is precise and written in a clear manner. State the date of the incidents or incident that took place; give a brief description of the performance concern or behavioral issue, and then state any violation of the job description or code of conduct that occurred. List what needs to be corrected and time frame of which the correction should take place.
Final Warning - So you have talked with the employee and documented the situation. You are not willing to give up, so you move to the final warning. This is documented as well with severe consequences. If you choose to implement a final warning, then it has to be just that. If the employee does not adhere to the final warning, then you do not write another final warning, you move to termination.
Termination - A termination is the last resort, and must be something that is entered into carefully and with input from Human Resources, which is a must have. The other department to consider is Legal. Depending on the situation you would want to make sure you have done all you can. When administering a termination, you want to state the previous discussions and warnings. You want to read the termination documentation because it details the reason(s) for the termination.
It is not good practice to terminate someone without documentation. Don't get me wrong. Some instances are so egregious that you have no choice, but there is something else to consider. You can always suspend an employee with pay until you get the documentation and all the facts.
I hope this helps! In Part 2, I will explain some more important facts regarding each progressive discipline.
Until next time, Stay Moxie!
Understanding these steps when starting the payment process for your small business is essential!
The thought of Payroll and Human Resources can send a small business owner’s minds reeling. If you do not have experience in either area, you can find yourself unprepared to handle the cost of using a payroll service provider.
A few things you can begin to consider before implementing payroll:
Research: Make sure you are clear on your state’s requirements for retail and sales tax. If you are selling a product or providing a taxable service then you need to make sure you meet the requirements for the state or states you are doing business in.The EIN: You have a business. Whether you have a for profit or non-profit you must have this number. This seems obvious, but you want to make sure you have this information.
Number of Employees: How many employees will be working for you? Are they part-time? Most importantly, how are you currently paying them? Are they paid weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly? Are they employees or contractors?
These are important questions and need to be considered. Employees and contractors can both be paid out of payroll, but you need to be clear on which employees will have taxes deducted and which will be exempt. This information, when provided upfront, can assist your sales rep with creating a more accurate proposal.
If you pay your employees weekly, keep in mind that you will likely pay more for this service. Bi-weekly pay ensures an employee will be paid 26 weeks out of the year. Semi-monthly is 24 pay periods a year and is usually the standard 1st and 15th pay structure.
If an employee is considered part-time and is working more than 30 hours, just be aware of the Affordable Care Act. All these are factors that need to be considered.
Payroll Processing Companies: There are several payroll processing companies. Some are large and some are small and local. Either way, you should meet with at least three different companies. Don't let the size of the company intimidate you as it does not necessarily mean that they don’t want your business. They are very departmentalized and usually have a department that works primarily with small businesses.
Make sure you are clear of the services you need. Do you need payroll processing only? Do you want to speak to someone about outsourcing benefits? Will you have someone manually entering the information at your location? Do you want live checks or will you require direct deposit? An added cost of issuing live checks will be a decision that you need to make while keeping your employee base in mind. Direct deposit is a more efficient and inexpensive way, but make sure your employee staff actually will be able to open a bank account. Many payroll processing companies offer a wide variety of services that can be beneficial for small business. Know your budget and how much you plan to do yourself.
Small business owners are fearless and overcome many obstacles. Don’t let your payroll intimidate you in to putting off the decision.