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You are here: Top Stories A Word of Advice
JJ Ramberg is passionate about business – and she's not afraid to give you advice about yours. The MSNBC host and bestselling author is constantly giving small businesses the boost they need to excel, noting, “On 'Your Business' we are all one hundred percent focused on providing useful information to small business owners, so that their companies can survive and grow.”

This influential woman got her first job working for NBC. After a few weeks there, Ramberg fell in love with journalism and decided that broadcast journalism was definitely the right path for her. Since then, she worked for CNN, became a regular on the “Today” show, and also writes for a number of magazines including “Entrepreneur.”

Throughout her career Ramberg has managed to use her passion and drive to create and assist small businesses. In an effort to make a greater impact on society, she teamed up with her brother, Ken Ramberg, to start the nonprofit GoodSearch.com, a site that raises money for non-profits by donating a penny for every search performed. The person searching can also designate the charity. Along with two sister sites – GoodShop.com and GoodDining.com – to date, these non-profits have raised over $9 million for charity and given her direct experience as an entrepreneur.

In 2012 Ramberg gained attention for her honest advice, not only as a broadcaster, but also as co-author of the book “It's Your Business: 183 Essential Tips that Will Transform Your Small Business.” She gained influence as more business organizations began to listen to and successfully use Ramberg's advice than ever before.

In “It's Your Business,” among the 183 tips that can transform a small business, are tips on managing employees effectively, understanding your brand and giving employees raises only after performance reviews have been finished. Tip number 109, for instance, may be one of the most important in a tough economy: “Never say no to a potential customer.”  Her advice is straightforward and helps keep business owners from blurring the lines between their business and personal affairs.

Ramberg's quick thinking and sharp advice has led to the success of her MSNBC show. “I've always been interested in hearing people’s stories and in the power of storytelling to effect change,” Ramberg said. Among the stories that inspire her most is one from Kim Jensen, owner of “Kim's Light Bagels.” Jensen – who had very little business experience – took $16,000 in savings and started a company making low-fat bagels. “Kim is an amazing woman. I left our interview completely inspired and feeling like anything’s possible if you put your mind to it,” Ramberg said. “I think that Kim had an unwavering belief that there was a market for her product and a 'don’t take no for an answer' kind of attitude. Her ability to hear 'not now' when people told her 'no' was what kept her going in the beginning.” Interviews featuring such entrepreneurs help Ramberg inspire other small business owners.

In 2012, America witnessed one of the most closely followed elections in history. Although Ramberg isn't making a lot of predictions about the long-term impact of Obama's re-election on small business, she does think 2013 might turn out to be a good year. “I think there is potential for (2013) to be a great year. Small businesses still face a lot of challenges, namely slow economic growth, but optimism is definitely higher than it was a few years ago,” she said. “As far as starting up a business – good ideas that are well executed do well during any kind of economy.”

Ramberg will continue her own small business crusade in 2013. “During the campaign, both President Obama and Governor Romney repeatedly spoke about and to small business owners, underscoring their importance to the economy,” she said. “My goal is to continue with the work I’m doing now and expand our reach.”






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