Welcome to www.CateCosta.com!

Did you know that there are more than 500,000 new businesses started every month in the US*? Crazy, right? I’m pretty sure you want to be one of them or you wouldn’t be here, so stop procrastinating and start building now.

Here is your 3-step action plan for today:

1) Sign up to get free tips for building your business + you’ll receive my guide to the Top 10 Mistakes New Entrepreneurs Make

2) Visit my blog to start getting clear, understandable, and actionable info to help you build your business

3) For personalized assistance, take a look at how I help new entrepreneurs and make an appointment with me

Have a great day and be proud of yourself for taking your first step towards becoming a business owner :)


Best Gifts for Entrepreneurs 2015

By on November 17, 2015

This week is a little different because the post isn’t exactly for the entrepreneurs themselves but is geared towards those who have entrepreneurs in their lives because we’re going to talk about the best gifts for entrepreneurs. I’ll try to cover a variety of items at a variety of price points so that you can move to the top of the favorite people list for the entrepreneur in your life no matter what your budget is. Full disclosure: many of these links are affiliate links. 

Google Fi

Google Fi is still in limited testing so you’ll have to add the entrepreneur in your life to the waitlist if you want to go this route, but it’s awesome. This is Google’s cell service and I love it: $20 per month plus $10 per GB of data that you actually use – and partial GBs are counted as partial GBs – plus the international calling rates are great and the data is the same in something like 120 countries so that the entrepreneur in your life can stay connected while traveling. I already have it, love it, and telling everyone I know about how awesome it is.

A portable charger

Most entrepreneurs never really stop working, which means their cell batteries never get a rest. A good portable charger can be a life-saver. These come in a range of prices, so scope them out, read reviews, and make sure you get one that properly connects to the type of phone your favorite entrepreneur uses.

A functional and professional bag or briefcase

One of my pet peeves is grown adults coming to business meetings with backpacks. I know they’re comfy and useful, but if you want to be taken seriously as a professional, please stop dressing like a child. If that’s just your style, that’s one thing, but combining a backpack and a suit makes you look confused or like you’re playing dress-up. 

Noise canceling headphones

Whether you’re traveling, in a co-working space, or in a home office, when you’re an entrepreneur there are bound to be lots of distractions that can derail your focus and slow your startup’s or small business’ progress. Sometimes you need to give your focus a little helping hand by canceling out any potentially distracting background noise with a good pair of headphones. Yes, I get that headphones that are this pricey are not for everyone. If you have a tendency to get easily distracted, however, these will do wonders for your ability to get in the zone and get stuff done.

Business card case

Here’s one that shouldn’t break anyone’s budget: a business card case. Every professional needs one but we all seem to forget to buy them for ourselves. There are a zillion options and you should consider personality and industry when choosing the right case, but you can’t do much better for a stocking stuffer than a basic one for under $5. Alternatively, I actually use a cigarette case as my business card case because it helps me stay organized – when I go to an event I keep my cards on one side and as I collect cards from people I meet, I put those on the other side. That way I am never fumbling around trying to sort through all of the cards I’ve collected to find one of mine to share.

Coffee or tea accessories

Entrepreneurs are no different than anyone else and sometimes mornings are just hard. Help us out with some cute coffee or tea accessories. I’m a tea drinker, a lover of puns, and a huge dork, so I’m sort of obsessed with adorable tea infusers like the Manatea, the Brew Whale, the strawberry, and the cute little robot. For coffee lovers, the AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker seems to be on lots of lists.

A massage or other spa treatment

Entrepreneurs need some time to relax so if you force them into it by gifting them a massage treatment, pedicure, or facial, they will be forever grateful!

Favorite bottle of alcohol

I repeat: entrepreneurs need some time to relax so if you help them chill out and enjoy some time with friends and family, they will love you. Buy them a bottle of their favorite scotch or wine and make sure they don’t talk shop at all while drinking it.

Touchscreen gloves

It’s super annoying when you can’t check something or answer a text easily because it’s cold outside and you’re bundled up. Save the hassle with some touchscreen gloves like these ones above.

Maid service

We all look for excuses not to wash the toilets and a customer crisis certainly works, so it’s easy to let the house get a little messy when you’re stressed out trying to build a business that can support you and your family. Help the entrepreneur in your life out by gifting him/her house-cleaning service. Or just a ROOMBA, whichever.

And finally, of course, a new laptop or tablet will always be a hit. Just make sure you find out what they need and what operating system they like before you buy.

Or, alternatively, if you just don’t know, an Amazon Prime membership is always great. We all need stuff. Amazon has almost all of that stuff: everything from computers to clothes to toilet paper. When we order that stuff, we all want it like RIGHT NOW. What’s not to love about a year of free 2-day shipping plus other goodies like free streaming movies, music, and shows.


Statement of Cash Flow Basics

By on November 3, 2015

We’re sticking with the summer reboot here on New Venture Mentor even though daylight saving just happened and we’re clearly well into fall. It was 72 degrees here in Chicago though, so I’m allowing the summer reboot to continue. Anywho,

Pascal Culverhouse Headshot

Guest Post: How to Get an ECommerce Website Up and Running

By on October 27, 2015

  I have another guest post for you this week and it’s all about how to build a successful ecommerce website, quickly. Pascal Culverhouse, who managed to build what became the UK’s #1 website for online sales of electronic cigarettes in


Balance Sheet Basics

By on October 20, 2015

This week we’re sticking with the reboot and doing a five-minute finance lessons on the basics you need to know about your balance sheet. Since I work with first-time entrepreneurs who don’t typically have any background in business management, I


Guest Post: 6 Steps to Improve Your Branding Without Spending a Dime

By on October 13, 2015

I have a guest post for you all this week and I think you’re really going to like it. Kelsey Frizzell, Co-Founder of KR Digital Solution, is here to share with us why branding is so incredibly important for entrepreneurs


Income Statement Basics

By on October 6, 2015

I know it’s starting to get chilly out there for a lot of us, but this week we’re sticking with the summer reboot and doing a five-minute finance lessons on the basics you need to know about your income statement, otherwise


Using Porter’s 5 Forces Model to Analyze Your Startup’s or Small Business’ Industry

By on September 22, 2015

Today we’re continuing the summer reboot (even though I guess it’s technically fall now) and remaking an old video of mine to teach you how to use Porter’s 5 Forces model to help develop the strategic plan for your business.


7 Steps to a Safer Website

By on September 8, 2015

This week, I have a special guest post for you from AccuWeb Hosting about how to make sure your website doesn’t get hacked. I have been through the disaster of dealing with being hacked with a client of mine, and


Entrepreneurs Beware, You Must Ask the Right Questions to Get Useful Answers

By on September 1, 2015

Today I want to talk with you a little bit about how you do primary research when you’re planning your offerings, exploring your market, describing your ideal customer, or any of the million other things you need to research and


Entrepreneurs: Don’t Be Your Own Dick Boss

By on August 25, 2015

Today we’re going to talk about horrible bosses…I don’t mean the horrible bosses that may have helped drive you to pursuing business ownership, however, because the worst of the worst when it comes to bosses is usually you. Yup; in