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Small business intellectual capital

Intellectual capital is one thing that should never be ignored when you run a small business. Your intellectual capital can be turned into profits, and leveraged to help improve cash flow and make your business a better place to be. What is intellectual capital? It is the knowledge and expertise that you have. It can also be the systems or structure you have in place that set you apart from other people. Intellectual capital in the intangible knowledge and structures that make you and your business qualified for your industry. It is the people, the knowledge, and the elusive talents that leave the building each night, and return each morning to work.

Intellectual capital may be intangible, but it is possible to make it into something that is profitable. Many people have made a career out of speaking, training, selling books, and the like where they share their intellectual capital for a price. You can do this too. In addition to creating a product or service with your intellectual capital to sell, you can make it more profitable by developing and managing it in a way to improve your business.

Here are a few ways you can make your small business intellectual capital more profitable:

1. Turn it into a blog.
2. Turn it into a book or ebook.
3. Turn it into a video course.
4. Use it to better train your staff.
5. Share key knowledge and experience with managers and other leaders.
6. Turn it into a white paper.
7. Turn it into software.

In other words, in order to make your intellectual capital profitable it needs to be used one of two ways, or both ways. First, it can be used to train your employees. When you share your know-how with your team of employees, you make them all smarter, and better. Regular training and sharing of information can make your employees work harder, and smarter, for more profitability. Second, turn your intellectual capital into a tangible and marketable product. It needs to be something that overcomes the limitations of intellectual capital, namely time, and allows you to share your know-how without having to be present. This might mean video seminars, a book, a whitepaper, or a piece of software. Whatever it is, market it, sell it, and profit from it.

Even the SBA recognizes the value in intellectual capital, and has set up a number of programs to encourage small business owners to increase their intellectual capital by attending entrepreneur training, seminars, etc. They also encourage fostering a sense of community by sharing intellectual capital through forums, discussion groups, etc. In doing so, small businesses are able to help one another, and improve the community as a whole. If one business owner knows the ins and outs of marketing, and another the ins and outs of web design, sharing that knowledge improves the whole, creating a stronger market, new jobs, increased growth rates, and potentially creating new industries. Sharing and growing your intellectual capital can be a very profitable endeavor.

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