iOS app Android app

Gene Marks
Gene Marks is an opinionated small business management columnist, author, speaker, and business owner.

He writes daily for The Washington Post and weekly for Forbes,,, and monthly for Philadelphia Magazine

Gene's books include The Manufacturer's Book of List, In God We Trust: Everyone Else Pays Cash, The Streetwise Small Business Book of Lists, The Small Business Desk Reference, Outfoxing The Small Business Owner - Crafty Techniques for Creating a Profitable Relationship and The Complete Idiot's Guide To Successful Outsourcing.

Gene is a CPA and runs The Marks Group PC, a highly successful ten-person firm that provides expert customer relationship management and technology consulting services to small and medium sized businesses. The Marks Group PC, launched in 1994, has grown to help more than 600 companies and more than 5,000 individuals throughout the country do things quicker and better. Prior to starting The Marks Group PC, Gene spent 9 years in the entrepreneurial services arm of the international consulting firm KPMG in Philadelphia where he was a senior manager.

Gene regularly presents his keynotes, workshops, seminars, and executive retreats across the U.S. He is also a board member of the National Speaker’s Association.

You can follow Gene on Twitter (@genemarks) or visit his website -

Entries by Gene Marks

The 1 Huge Thing Missing From the GOP Tax Plans So Far

(1) Comments | Posted October 2, 2015 | 10:33 AM

So far, four Republican candidates have released details of their tax plans. And yet all four are missing something -- as Donald Trump would put it -- HUGE.

Among many ideas, Jeb Bush wants to lower tax rates across the board for both individuals and corporations as well as cut...

Read Post

3 Reasons Why Trump Is Your Better Business Candidate Over Carson

(0) Comments | Posted September 18, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Ben Carson is now number two in the polls, still significantly behind Trump, but gaining. And gaining enough to have drawn the attention of (and attacks from) Trump over the past few days.

Trump and Carson have similarities - both are political outsiders with very little foreign policy experience...

Read Post

Have a Thick Skin and Three Other Things I Learned About Business From Democratic Presidential Candidate Martin O'Malley

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 4:45 PM

Martin O'Malley is running for president. And of course his positions on issues affecting business and the economy are important. But for an individual business owner like myself, O'Malley -- like most of the other candidates running for the country's highest office -- brings something else of significant value to...

Read Post

How's Your Data Security? The FTC Now Wants to Know

(0) Comments | Posted September 2, 2015 | 2:01 PM

I have a client who runs a hundred-person company that recently suffered a data breach. His systems were hacked, and both customer and employee data was taken from his internal server. Not only that, but the hacker left a "crypto-locker" virus that effectively disabled his entire network. The poor guy...

Read Post

Why Do So Many Small Business Owners LOVE Donald Trump?

(2) Comments | Posted August 21, 2015 | 12:51 AM

From his inflammatory comments about immigration and women to attacks on other politicians and countries around the world, Donald Trump has continued to infuriate his Republican opponents and create joy among Democrats and the media. And yet small business owners continue to overwhelmingly favor him.

A survey

Read Post

Small Businesses Were Missing From Last Week's GOP Debate

(0) Comments | Posted August 11, 2015 | 11:15 AM

Last week's two Republican debates covered a wide range of issues.

Donald Trump dominated. Carly Fiorina performed well. Hillary Clinton, Rosie O'Donnell and Megyn Kelly were attacked. Data privacy was debated and national security was discussed. The President's record, from healthcare to the Iran deal was savaged. Immigration remains a...

Read Post

Five Ways A Trump Presidency Would Affect Your Business and Mine

(0) Comments | Posted July 30, 2015 | 8:05 AM

Donald Trump's run for the Presidency is serious and should be taken seriously by business owners like you and I.

He is spending millions, putting his personal brand at stake and campaigning hard. Sure, some of the things he's saying are controversial. But he's among the leading candidates in the...

Read Post

Could the Apple Watch Be Worse Than Google Glass?

(13) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 6:51 AM

Do you know anyone (either not in the tech industry, connected to Apple or a gadget geek) who owns an Apple Watch? I don't. I'm sure these people exist. But with all the publicity and fanfare I would've expected to see the Apple Watch everywhere. Something just doesn't seem right....

Read Post

5 Reasons Why You're Wrong About Kim Kardashian

(1) Comments | Posted July 2, 2015 | 12:40 PM

Just recently there was a public outcry from NPR listeners. Was it about racial inequality? Gay marriage? The Confederate flag? No. It was about Kim Kardashian. Apparently, she appeared on a game show and some listeners were furious. "Had I heard your Saturday show before I made my...

Read Post

Forget Your Bank -- Here Are Four New Sources of Capital You Probably Didn't Know

(2) Comments | Posted June 25, 2015 | 9:35 AM

Remember back in the day when your business needed financing?

Your choices were few. You could go to a traditional bank for a traditional bank loan. Or you could look for money from a family member. Or an investor. Or, if you were hoping to go public maybe an...

Read Post

5 Things Every Small Business Owner Should Know (And Probably Doesn't) About Windows 10

(0) Comments | Posted June 15, 2015 | 9:38 AM

Small business owners like myself (and most of my clients) hate it when Microsoft releases a new version of their Windows operating system. Of course, new versions of Windows means new features and capabilities that will hopefully help us run our businesses better. And developers and other geeks look forward...

Read Post

Would You Hire Caitlyn Jenner?

(2) Comments | Posted June 8, 2015 | 1:40 PM

An applicant applies for a job at your company. She is wearing a head scarf. You have a dress code. She is a qualified candidate. However, you do not offer her the job. She sues your company, saying that your hiring practices were discriminatory. She says your dress code should...

Read Post

3 Very Specific Things a 'Small Business President' Should Do

(0) Comments | Posted May 28, 2015 | 4:31 PM

Last week, Hillary Clinton made news saying she wanted to be the "small business president." She visited with and talked to small business owners from New England to the Midwest, joined LinkedIn and even gave control of her Twitter account to a small business owner. Can you blame...

Read Post

How to Reduce Your Accounting Staff

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2015 | 6:56 AM

"The Age of Men is over. The time of the Orc has come." Can you tell I just watched all three Lord of the Rings over the weekend? So I've got that quote on my mind. Particularly when it comes to the accounting staff at many of my clients. The...

Read Post

Why the French Are More Productive Than Americans

(4) Comments | Posted May 1, 2015 | 11:41 AM

The French are more productive than us Americans. Yes, you read right. The French.

Not that I have anything against the French. But we Americans hate to lose in anything. We consider ourselves to be the hardest working, most productive, greatest nation on earth. And yet, sadly, the facts...

Read Post

How to Really Celebrate National Volunteer Month

(0) Comments | Posted April 21, 2015 | 5:45 PM

This month is National Volunteer Month. And of all the ways corporations support volunteerism I like what Apple Corporation does the most.

According to this report Apple matches employees for their time spent on philanthropic endeavors, not just money. To that end, the company matches up to...

Read Post

Why I Don't Want To Have Coffee With You

(5) Comments | Posted April 9, 2015 | 4:43 PM

Please... I don't want to have coffee with you.

I don't mean to sound rude. And I really, really appreciate that you'd like to get together. But I'm a small business owner. My days are really busy. And I don't have the time to just "have coffee." I know you...

Read Post

Great Business Leaders Mind Their Own Business

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2015 | 3:08 PM

True story: I have a client - a landscaping company. The company's owner holds a "voluntary prayer session" every morning in the office before crews go out to work. The prayers are to God and to Jesus. He's a very nice guy and clearly a religious man. And he wants...

Read Post

44 Taxes I Pay Because I Live in Philadelphia

(6) Comments | Posted March 18, 2015 | 11:33 AM

I live in Philadelphia. And I do pay a lot of taxes.

Pennsylvania's Governor Wolf introduced his budget last week. And in it he proposed an increase in spending, no pension reform, no long-term deficit reduction and no cuts in costs. And although he's lowering business and real estate taxes,...

Read Post

38 Percent of Small Businesses Are Ignoring a Huge Liability Coming in October

(7) Comments | Posted February 26, 2015 | 3:31 PM

Here's what I'm used to doing: I walk into a typical coffee shop. I order coffee. I hand over my credit card. The person behind the counter swipes it. I decline the receipt. I'm out the door. It's fast and simple. You too? Well, that's all about to change for...

Read Post