The Oakland County area has an abundance of opportunities for existing businesses and new ventures.
When the going gets rough, the entrepreneurial spirit gets creative and resourceful.
The Oakland Press has gathered upcoming events, news and links to help business owners and professionals succeed.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Oakland County's tech248 MeetUp is March 26

Oakland County's "tech248" Southwest District MeetUp is 2:30-3:30 p.m. March 26 at Detroit Public TV Riley Broadcast Center, 1 Clover Ct., Wixom. The guest speaker is Thanh Tran,  founder and CEO of Kidpreneur,
Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson formed tech248 in November to promote Oakland County as a global technology hub and increase tech-based business, skilled tech labor and collaboration in the county. For more information, visit MItech248.com or contact Chris Olzem at Oakland County: olzemc@oakgov.com or call 248-858-1354.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Free income tax help for seniors

AARP offers free income tax assistance for those 50 years of age and older with low-mid income, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. March 31 and April 14 at the Richardson Community Center, 1485 E. Oakley Park, Commerce Township, 248-926-0063.
• City of Wixom free income tax assistance is 9 a.m.-noon Mar. 24 by appointment, 248-624-0870.
• Dublin Community Senior Center in partnership with AARP is offering free tax counseling/preparation to low and middle income taxpayers, especially ages 60 years+ on Mondays. Call for appointment 248-698-2394.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

When is it better to bite your tongue at work?

By Diane Gottsman, a national modern manners and etiquette expert, author, speaker and the owner of The Protocol School of Texas.
Here are 7 tips and reminders from Diane Gottsman to avoid turmoil with peers in the workplace:
1. You don’t always need to be “right.” It’s unrealistic to think you will never make a mistake. How you handle it says a great deal about who you are as a professional. Don’t try and shift the blame or go radio silent, hoping no one will notice. Own your error, come up with a solution and apologize for the inconvenience it may have caused.
2. It’s not necessary to one up your coworker. Friendly competition is healthy and challenges others to step up their pace. However, hostile competition and undermining a coworker in front of others is a bad business move. Make every effort to congratulate a peer on a job well done and keep the conversation focused on their success. Steer away from bringing the conversation back to you and your own achievements.
3. You learn more by listening. It’s critical you don’t miss a lesson in business because you are too busy talking! If someone is taking the time to offer you constructive criticism, mentor you, or give you a piece of sound business advice, take advantage of the opportunity to listen and learn. Jot down notes to review later.
4. Don’t over commit. It’s the beginning of the holiday season and things are going to start getting extremely hectic. Your coworkers all have great causes they support and would like to get you involved. Prepare what you will say when asked to volunteer for the toy drive, bake sale, community diaper collection, and Santa’s volunteer clean up project. Pick and choose carefully what and who you will support. Say to the others, “I’m sorry, I’ve already committed to another project but it sounds like a wonderful outreach.” Be polite but firm.
5. Know-it-alls are annoying. If you are good at your job, there is no need to brag about your expert status. Your reputation will speak for itself loud and clear.
6. No one respects a gossip. Being part of the “in the know” crowd may seem exciting and fun, until you are the subject of conversation. Rest assured, if they are trash talking someone else with you, they are surely talking about you when you are gone. Avoid water cooler chit chat and aspire to be the person who can be counted on to keep their mouth shut. At the end of the day your associates will view you as a trustworthy friend and coworker.
7. Keep your language clean. Cursing in the workplace is a habit worth breaking. Even if your boss regularly uses curse words at the office, you can't go wrong by keeping a civil tongue. If tough situations bring out the profanity, find other ways to cope.
Diane Gottsman specializes in executive leadership and etiquette training, with clients ranging from university students to Fortune 500 companies. She has a Master’s Degree in Sociology with an emphasis on adult behavior.  Visit http://dianegottsman.com/ and http://www.protocolschooloftexas.com/

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Oakland County One Stop Business Center workshops

Walk-In-Start-Up ThursdaysWalk-In-Start-Up Thursdays is 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. every Thursday, non holiday at the Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Waterford Township. Walk In Start Up Thursdays Small Business counseling initiative is for individuals who want to launch a business. They will receive confidential, one-on-one advice from an experienced business consultant with no appointment necessary. There is no fee. Walk-in sessions are available on a first come, first served basis and each session is limited to 15 minutes.

For the following workshops, reservations are required, visit www.advantageoakland.com/StartABusiness or call 248-858-0783.

Business expo
Get a Grip on Your Business is 9-11 a.m. March 5 at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Bldg 41W, Waterford Township, free.

Business Research
Business Research: Feasibility to Expansion is 9-11:30 a.m. March 10 at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Bldg 41 W, Waterford Township.

CEED Small Business Loan Orientation
CEED Small Business Loan Orientation is 9-11 a.m. March 11 at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Bldg 41 W, Waterford Township.

Starting a business
Starting a Business is 9-11:30 a.m. March 12 at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Bldg 41 W, Waterford Township.

Sales workshop
Break the Rules, Close More Sales is 10 a.m.-1 p.m. March 12 at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Bldg 41 W, Waterford Township.