It’s safe to say that this year’s U.S. presidential election has heightened public perception on what makes “good business” and what good business practices are. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has repeatedly asserted that he is a fastidious, smart and successful businessman. Americans heard in the first debate how Trump had hoped for the 2008 recession and was happy to buy up all of the failed condominiums and other real estate, claiming that it was “good business,” despite millions of Americans having lost their homes as result.
There are other things the public has learned about Trump’s business record since his campaign took shape, and you know what? One undisputedly smart thing he’s done over the years is invest in [business owners insurance](https://coverhound.com/business-insurance).
**How to Become a Professional in 3 Easy Steps**
The New York Times [reported](http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/10/07/us/elections/donald-trump-tax-advantages-deductions-losses.html?mabReward=A6&moduleDetail=recommendations-0&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion®ion=Footer&module=WhatsNext&version=WhatsNext&conte&_r=0) that Trump had filed a $916 million net operating loss on his 1995 [tax returns](https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/business/wp/2016/09/15/a-running-tally-of-trumps-many-excuses-for-why-he-wont-release-his-tax-returns/). Not having a more recent tax return to study (Trump is the first presidential nominee to refuse to share his tax returns with the public) it would look as though this self-proclaimed billionaire lost close to a billion because of some bad business decisions. A widely held belief is that Trump refuses to share his tax returns because it would show voters that he is not the successful real estate tycoon he would have the public believe, remember, this is a man who started his business not with pluck or the sweat on his brow, but with a “small” loan of a million dollars given to him by his father.
Here are three business lessons you can learn by doing the exact opposite of Donald Trump.
*1. Don’t file for a loan you cannot pay.*
Donald Trump has declared [bankruptcy](http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/jun/21/hillary-clinton/yep-donald-trumps-companies-have-declared-bankrupt/) for six of his businesses. Trump uses little, if any, of his own money when he makes business investments. When the business starts to fail, he refuses to pay the loans back and opts to file for bankruptcy. Small business owners can’t do this. Not only is it immoral, it’s bad for business and severely impacts your credit score, making it highly unlikely that a bank would grant you another loan to start a new business.
*2. Don’t mismanage your social media accounts.*
Most (successful) businesses have an online presence, be it on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram or Twitter. If you don’t want your business to be tied to your personal account, make your personal account private and only post info and pictures relating to your business on your business’s account. People don’t like when seemingly successful businessmen post slanderous, nonsensical and tyrannical messages at 3 a.m., it makes the businessman (and in effect the business) look more than a little cray-cray.
*3. Do get business owners insurance.*
[Hundreds](http://www.ibtimes.com/political-capital/hundreds-donald-trumps-employees-have-sued-alleged-labor-infractions-2336166) of Donald Trump’s employees have sued him for alleged labor infractions. If an employee takes you to court for a work-related incident, your small business insurance policy will cover liability and litigation fees. Trump faces [3,500 lawsuits](http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2016/06/01/donald-trump-lawsuits-legal-battles/84995854/); can you imagine what his premiums must look like?
Just because someone says they do good business, doesn’t mean they do. Set your business apart by doing both: saying you do good, and actually doing good. [Visit CoverHound today](https://coverhound.com/business-insurance) for more small business insurance help and ideas.