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5 Business Questions to Ask Midyear

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By Caroline McMillan

But that’s just another reason to make sure you keep your name circulating. “You don’t let your guard down,” he said. “You’ve got to stay up on your business. … Stay sharp.”

Someone’s more likely to seek out a restaurant where they know someone, Garen said, and summertime business events and family-friendly festivals facilitate that one-on-one interaction. “You exhibit what you have, you have fun, and you generate business,” Garen said.

2. Am I playing off the news?

David Tobin, one of the founders of Tobin Starr and Partners, a Charlotte, N.C.-based architectural and design firm, said he starts every meeting with a discussion of local and national news. Those few minutes help them stay apprised of the marketplace, which, in turn, has generated a lot of business, Tobin said. His firm designed the NASCAR Hall of Fame building in Charlotte and has big-name clients, such as Brixx Pizza and Pandora Jewelry.

These updates were especially important when the economy crashed and many of the private-sector gigs dropped off. Tobin Starr and Partners relied on news to find opportunities for public-sector jobs, such as the renovation they recently worked on at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.

“It’s important for us to pay attention … to even try to participate,” he said. “We’d be in much worse shape if we simply sat at our desks and did our work … and before we know it, we’ll be looking up at our desk and our phones won’t be ringing.”

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