Inc Magazine: September 1, 2002


Who Do You Call When No One Has the Answers?
When your company faces a tactical challenge, you probably turn to your lawyer, banker, or board member for advice. But what if your problem is much more complex -- and personal? If it has to do with balancing health with ambition, work with family, or duty to others with responsibility to yourself? When entrepreneurial life lands you in a crisis, you need guidance on a whole different level.
The Uber Mentor
If you're lucky, you have a special adviser who helps you deal with life's curveballs. If you're really lucky, that adviser is Peter Drucker.
How to Collect from Anyone (Even Enron)
You don't need us to tell you that getting paid at all, let alone on time, isn't easy. But consider your collection methods: are you really doing the best that you can? We've got 30 road-tested tips that are bound to improve things -- just in time to help your business mount a fourth-quarter comeback.

Special Series: The Innovation Factor

Inside Innovative Minds
In the second installment of our three-part series on innovation, Inc examines in depth the men and women who are coming up with today's market-transforming inventions, where those individuals get their ideas, and how they operate.
Innovative Minds
A look at six companies' trailblazers and their personal traits.
Your Brain on Innovation
Neuroscience gives us some clues about what makes creative geniuses tick. So does the brain of legendary inventor Ray Kurzweil, who let us check out his cerebrum.
What's Your Innovation Quotient?
So you think you're inventive? Take our 20 question quiz and see how you rate.

In Every Issue

Mail: September 2002
Readers react to recent Inc magazine articles.
Archive: From Calamity to Colossus
Bank of America can trace its success back to the immigrant-owned businesses that it saw through the disastrous 1906 San Francisco earthquake.


High Concept: Tapping a New Market
Will new features and pumped-up distribution enable a niche product to reach the masses?
Dossier: A Standout in Her Field
Susan Davis pushes socially responsible business by drawing elite investors into her circle of networks.
Main Street: Cowboys and Complex Floral Notes
At a historic cattle ranch in Hawaii, paniolos (Hawaiian cowboys) share the terrain with a vineyard and tipsy tourists.
60-Second Business Plan: Berries Jubilee
Say it with a plum. Edible Arrangements has high hopes of becoming the FTD of fruit baskets. Find out whether the experts think this start-up's founder can deliver the goods.
Business for Sale: Pipe Dreams
Here's a chance to get in on the ground floor of an industry that's as hot as a Texas summer.

The Inc Life

Returns: It's a Big World, After All
Not so long ago, the U.S. markets looked like the only ones worth investing in. But they weren't then -- and they sure aren't now.


FYI: Life in the Fast Lane
Highlights from the 2002 Inc 500 conference.
Street Smarts: A Breach of Trust
Despite the recent revelations about high-level corporate larceny, most businesspeople are out to earn an honest buck. So it still comes as a surprise to discover a supplier or customer taking advantage of you. The question is, How should you respond?
Letter From Ground Zero: Down But Not Yet Out
They didn't lose their lives on September 11, but they did lose businesses and customers. Hundreds of millions of dollars that were supposed to have come to their rescue haven't materialized. The owners of small businesses close to the World Trade Center feel abandoned, bitter, and betrayed.

The Whole New Business Catalog

Search: He Said, She Said
Where to find resources for extracting meaningful information from mutual fund reports, for contemporary quotations on a host of themes, and for comprehensive analysis of the government's data on demographics.
Forecast: Picking Up Speed
Companies are boosting their sales and adding staff -- and watching the road ahead very closely for potholes.
Cheat Sheet: Eminent Domains
A slew of new on-line business addresses are coming on the market. Should you stake out a claim on territory that goes beyond dot-com?
Contrarian Thinking: Extra! Extra!
Conventional wisdom says that only the lean will survive in the current business climate. But can a company actually be too thin to get rich?

September on the Web

How Innovative Are You?
Did you score in the money on our "Innovation Quotient" quiz? To create it, staff writer Ilan Mochari researched innovation texts and studied the creative processes of everyone from Leonardo da Vinci to the folks at Sony Corp. For an annotated version of the quiz, complete with source material and an explanation of the right and wrong answers, check out
Collection Slip-Ups
In "How to Collect From Anyone (Even Enron)," staff writer Ilan Mochari taps a panel of veteran collectors for their best strategies for pulling in payments. Exclusively on, those panelists ofer their opinions about the collection techniques every business owner should avoid.
Father Figure
As senior editor Elaine Grant discoverd in "The Uber Mentor," Peter Drucker is many entrepreneurs' idea of a dream mentor. But if you can't enlist Drucker as your counselor, whom can you get? Use's guide to mentors for advice on finding, choosing, and using a father (or mother) figure.
Nothing But Blue Skies?
Brighter days may well be ahead, at least according to the CEOs who responded to Inc's quarterly survey on the state of the entrepreneurial economy. On, reporter Kate O'Sullivan distills additional data gleaned from the survey, including stats on sales, cash flow, and hiring.

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