Did you know that Christmas cookies have no calories?
Yep, it’s in the "Santa Clause" in the holiday laws.

2020 has certainly been a year we will all remember – and not because it was so awesome! Hopefully, we have learned a thing or two to help us grow & develop.

What is Your Time is Worth?
In every business, some things are worth your time and some things that are not. If you busy yourself with the things that are not, you will always feel underpaid and overworked. Instead, make a list of the things that you should be farming out to others. It may seem counterintuitive to pay others to do things you could be doing but everything has a cost. For instance, if you are the primary person bringing in sales for your company, but you spend time with other less meaningful activities, you are losing money. 

If you know that for every 5 sales contacts you make, 1 will buy from you and you can reach 5 people in an hour, your average sale is $400, then you can expect—on average—a sale an hour. So, every hour you are spending doing something else is costing you a sale. 

When Do You Work Best?
Many of us have had to get creative with our work hours. Hopefully you’ve learned what your most productive hours are. The “freshest” part of the day should be used to tackle new projects, bring on new accounts, brainstorm ways to grow your business, etc. 

Learn New Information – Develop a New Skill
From webinars to online classes, there is an educational pursuit for every interest and budget. Consider your interests but also think about what will improve your employability or your business. What complementary services might you offer if you improved your knowledge in a particular area. For instance, if you offer marketing content for businesses, learning more about SEO may help you command a higher hourly or project fee.  Now is an excellent time to look at educational options. There are many affordable options.

COVID has forced us to reexamine where we work and how we do it. Think about ways you might invest in making your business stronger post-COVID than it was before.

I repurposed this information from Christina R. Metcalf, a marketer who enjoys using the power of story.

What’s Happening?
Have you seen the decorated windows downtown? Check out The Hotel at Oberlin and the window between Ratsy’s and Manuel’s Barber Shop. There are more coming soon!

EAT, DRINK & WIN – Chance to win $100 in gift certificates for Lorain County restaurantsThe Eat, Drink & Win promotion provides $100 in Gift Certificates per week through December 31, 2020. People who visit participating restaurants can turn in their receipts every week for a chance to win. Participating Oberlin restaurants are 1833, The Feve, The Local, Lorenzo’s Pizzeria, ThiNi Thai, Oberlin Subway, Show Train Café, and Sterks Brickyard Bar & Grill. Go here for more information:  LorainCounty.com/EatDrinkWin. Download the Daily Explorer app at https://bit.ly/36nNWCF to upload your visit and receipt to the contest. Winners are being announced on Facebook Live – schedule is on the Eat Drink Win website.

OBERLIN GIFT CERTIFICATES PROMOTION. BUY $50 and get $10;  BUY $25 and get $5. Oberlin Gift Certificates are perfect for everyone, especially those hard-to-buy-for people. Help us keep money in Oberlin and support your local businesses. You can purchase the certificates in the OBP Office, 23 East College St. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. or online here:  https://www.oberlin.org/oberlin-gift-certificates/  There is also a link on that page to a list of businesses that accept the certificates.

HOLIDAY SHOPPING PASSPORT CONTESTEnter for a chance to win a $25 Gift Certificate. Now until December 29th shoppers can pick up a Shopping Passport in most stores downtown, purchase something in three stores and have the store initial the passport, deposit your initialed passport in the boxes at Ginko Gallery or Ben Franklin’s. We collect the passports every Wednesday and draw a winner for a $25 Oberlin gift certificate. It’s a win-win for the shopper and for the business!
2020 has been a very challenging year for businesses 
and nonprofits and OBP is no exception.

We have pivoted much of our efforts to help retain and sustain our small businesses – researching and sharing loan and grant opportunities; joining in county-wide activities and efforts to support small businesses; offering virtual programming and outreach to businesses; helping businesses get ready to re-open after the ‘stay at home’ orders; distributing medical grade face shields; publicizing businesses offerings, hours, etc. regionally and locally; promoting Oberlin via the Community Magazine delivered to all Oberlin households; creating and distributing the Oberlin Visitors Guide; reminding Oberlin residents via social media and a flier delivered to all households to shop local – to support our small businesses during the holidays and always – to purchase Oberlin gift certificates to keep money in Oberlin, etc.

THANK YOU!  AS of December 9th, these businesses and nonprofit organizations have taken advantage of the opportunity to renew their memberships in OBP for 2021 at 2020 prices. We thank them for their loyalty and their understanding that if we work together, we can support each other and have the best chance of enjoying the light at the end of this long COVID tunnel. We hope others will also take advantage of the offer to join for 2021 at 2020 pricing – the offer is good until December 31, 2020.
Watson Hardware
Oberlin Midas
Michael & Debra Bush
Evie Lou Oberlin
Oberlin Subway
Oberlin Cable Co-op
Rosen-Jones Photography
Kurt Sarringhaus Co., L.P.A.
Lorenzo’s Pizzeria
Edward Jones
Solutions in Sustainability
Gardenscapes by Joanna
AAA East Central
Custom Cleaning Services
1830 Hallauer House
Route 58 Storage
Pradnya Martz
Cowling Funeral Home
Peace Community Church
Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra
Lorain County Metro Parks
Oberlin Community Services
Oberlin Public Library
New Russia Township
Oberlin House of the Lord Fellowship
Oberlin City Schools
Association of Specialty Cut
Flower Growers

OBP Board Member Profile:
Kathy Perales, OBP Board of Trustees
This month we are highlighting Kathy Perales, OBP Board of Trustees Secretary.

Tell me about your business. I am a solo intellectual property attorney – I work by myself, at CoWork Oberlin or remotely, and do things like register trademarks for business names and products, prepare and file patent applications for new inventions, help authors negotiate contracts with publishers, set up regular and nonprofit businesses, and send and respond to cease and desist letters when copyright, trademark or patent infringement may be happening.  

Tell me about you –  your interests, passions, things we should know. I’m interested in innovation, science, math, education, health and nutrition, reading novels and nonfiction, cooking, gardening, the outdoors. I like that my area of the law is not usually as combative as other areas can be.  

Why did you volunteer to be a board of trustees’ member? Larry Funk asked me! I was just starting my law practice in Oberlin and I wanted to get to know people and be involved with the business community.

What have you learned through your board involvement? OBP does so much for the community that many people don’t realize, in economic development, tourist and community events and publicity, and more. We could do a lot more with more volunteers and committee members.

Would you encourage others to become involved as a board member, committee member, or program or event volunteer?  If so, why?  Yes!  Any way you can contribute will strengthen our community, and it will benefit you in ways you can’t predict.  A vibrant downtown and local economic strength and jobs benefit all of us in Oberlin.

What is some advice you would like to share with our readers Make a commitment to reach out to other people, especially during this time of isolation. It could be relatives near or far, old and new friends, neighbors, colleagues, or even cold calls to people you notice on LinkedIn who look interesting to you for whatever reason. Don’t be afraid that people will be annoyed by you reaching out – they are much more likely to be delighted by it, and if they don’t have time to talk, they will tell you so. Be brave and be the one who says hello first!
Thursday, January 14, 2020
via Zoom

To receive monthly invitations, send your email address to obp.org@gmail.com.
RSVP for Good Morning Oberlin
Online - Zoom

1/14/21 9:00am - 01/14/21 10:00am

We'll send you a Zoom link prior to the event.
I'll be there!
I can't make it
by Megan Apple
Now is a great time to get Momentum – and
Take Advantage of Free Business Coaching
The year is almost over – and what a year it has been!  Everything changed, seemingly overnight, and as we look forward to 2021, some uncertainty remains.  

It may feel as though there is no purpose in making lists or plans for next year.  The good news? We have control over our thoughts, emotions, and actions. Now is an excellent time to get momentum for the coming year.

Use the time within the remaining days of the year to set your intentions for 2021. What specific goals, outcomes, and actions do you want to make happen? If you have a business, review your numbers, marketing, and plans to keep it moving forward in the new year.

You don’t need to do it alone. CoWork Oberlin provides free business coaching through its resident business advisor, Megan Apple. With over 20 years of entrepreneurial experience, she can help you focus on possibilities and the high-impact activities you can take now to make 2021 a successful year.

Ready to set a time? It’s easy. Click on this link: https://calendly.com/profit-joyfully/cowork-oberlin. If the times available don’t fit your schedule, no worriesCall Megan at 216-704-6568 or drop her an email at m.apple@coworkoberlin.org. Evening and weekend times can be arranged.
Profit Joyfully Network for Women
Beginning Tuesday, January 5, 2021 at 9 – 10:30 am  
A twice monthly coach facilitated group for female entrepreneurs to provide support, networking opportunities, business coaching and advising.

Profit Joyfully Intensive for Women
Beginning Thursday, January 7, 2021 at 6 - 7:30 p.m.  
The Profit Joyfully six-week intensive group gives you the space you need alongside like-minded female entrepreneurs.  We want you to have your business, your life, your way. A successful business requires three things: an audience, an offer and a way to connect the two.  That’s it. During our 6 weeks together, you will become unbelievably clear, and have roadmap for rolling out the life and business you are envisioning. Your deep understanding of what you are meant to do is the foundation to create a brand that resonates with your audience.

The health, safety and well-being of Oberlin employees, residents and businesses is our highest priority. Although City buildings are still closed to the public, Oberlin services are still operational. Please visit www.cityofoberlin.com/coronavirus for information how to contact City offices, information on services, state of Ohio orders/advisories, assistance options, etc. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter for up to date information!

Holiday Closures: City Offices will be closed on Thursday, December 24th and Friday, December 25th in observance of the Christmas holiday, and Friday, January 1st in observance of New Year’s Day. Emergency services and regular refuse/recycling pick-up are always available. Please see these helpful guides from the Ohio Department of Health and Lorain County Public Health to have a safe holiday season this year.

City Email Updates: Keep up to date on important City announcements, including City programming and service updates, job openings, event announcements and more! Sign up today: https://bit.ly/3fwR5kc.

Emergency Notification System: It’s more important than ever to stay informed. Members of the local workforce are encouraged to register for the Wireless Emergency Notification System (WENS). This system is used by the City of Oberlin and Lorain County to alert the community about emergency situations, such as boil alerts, power outages, street closures, weather alerts, etc. Alerts can be received via email, text message and/or voicemail. Register HERE. For more information, contact the Oberlin Fire Department at 440-774-3211 or fireinfo@cityofoberlin.com.
Snow/Ice Removal: As the weather gets colder, please remember that it is the responsibility of the property owner to remove snow/ice from the sidewalks abutting the property. Snow and ice shall be removed from the sidewalks in a timely manner, typically within 12 hours of accumulation. If there are any issues related to snow/ice removal, please contact Oberlin Code Administrator Chris Yates at 440-775-7251 or CYates@CityofOberlin.com.
City of Oberlin COVID-19 Emergency Working Capital Loan Program for Businesses: Loans up to $10,000 at 0% interest for rent/mortgage payments, employee payroll, utility payments, inventory or essential supplies. Must retain 1 employee, which could be the sole proprietor. See the Program Guidelines or Contact Planning Director Carrie Handy for more information (440-775-7250 or chandy@cityofoberlin.com)

City of Oberlin Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) COVID-19 Emergency Working Capital Loan Program for Businesses: Loans up to $10,000 at 0% interest for rent/mortgage payments, employee payroll, utility payments, inventory or essential supplies.  Must retain at least 1 low to moderate income job and at least 51% of all employees retained must be low to moderate income.  See the Program Guidelines or Contact Planning Director Carrie Handy for more information (440-775-7250 or chandy@cityofoberlin.com)