Navigation
  • Essay Webtraffic
  • Essay Google Adsense
  • Essay Random Articles
  • Essay Various
  • Essay Self Improvement Articles
  • Essay Articles Marketing1
  • Essay Accounting
  • Essay Acid reflux
  • Essay Acne
  • Essay Adsense
  • Essay Adult
  • Essay Advertising
  • Essay Adwareand spyware
  • Essay Aff10mar
  • Essay Affiliate
  • Essay Affiliate Marketing
  • Essay Affiliate Marketing On The Internet
  • Essay Affiliate Success
  • Essay Affiliate Marketers
  • Essay Affiliate Articles
  • Essay Affiliate Programs
  • Essay After School Activities
  • Essay Aikido
  • Essay Air Purifiers
  • Essay Air freight
  • Essay Air Purifiers
  • Essay Alternative energy
  • Essay Alternative Medicine
  • Essay American History
  • Essay Anger management
  • Essay Art Auctions
  • Essay ArticleMarketing
  • Essay Articles
  • Essay Articles Web Design
  • Essay Articles Marketing
  • Essay Articles
  • Essay Article Marketing
  • Essay Article Writing
  • Essay Artmarketing
  • Essay Arts Entertainment
  • Essay Aspen nightlife
  • Essay Aspen Nightlife
  • Essay Astrology
  • Essay Astronomy
  • Essay Atkins Diet
  • Essay Attraction
  • Essay ATV
  • Essay Auctions
  • Essay Audio Video Streaming
  • Essay Autism
  • Essay Auto Navigation Systems
  • Essay Auto Responders
  • Essay Auto sound systems
  • Essay Auto Leasing
  • Essay Autoresponders
  • Essay Aviation
  • Essay Babies
  • Essay Baby
  • Essay Back pain
  • Essay Backyard Activities
  • Essay Bargain Hunting
  • Essay Bathroom Remodeling
  • Essay Bathroom accessories
  • Essay BBQs
  • Essay Beach Vacations
  • Essay Beauty
  • Essay Biking
  • Essay Biography
  • Essay Black History
  • Essay Blog Marketing
  • Essay Blogging
  • Essay Blogs
  • Essay Bluetooth Technology
  • Essay Boarding
  • Essay Boating
  • Essay Boats
  • Essay Bodydetox
  • Essay Book Marketing
  • Essay Book Reviews
  • Essay Breast Feeding
  • Essay Breast Cancer
  • Essay Budgeting
  • Essay Burglar alarm
  • Essay Business
  • Essay Buying A Boat
  • Essay Buying Paintings
  • Essay California tan
  • Essay Camera bag
  • Essay Candle Making
  • Essay Car Rental
  • Essay Car Stereo
  • Essay Cardio
  • Essay Careers
  • Essay Carpet
  • Essay Cars
  • Essay Cats
  • Essay CD duplication
  • Essay Celebrities
  • Essay Cell Phone
  • Essay Child Care
  • Essay Choosing the Right Golf Clubs
  • Essay Christmas Shopping
  • Essay Cigars
  • Essay Closet Organizers
  • Essay Clothing
  • Essay Coaching
  • Essay Coffee
  • Essay Coin Collecting
  • Essay Colic
  • Essay College
  • Essay College Scholarship
  • Essay Colon Cancer
  • Essay Communications
  • Essay COMPUTER GAMES & SYSTEMS
  • Essay COMPUTERS, LAPTOPS, SMARTPHONES
  • Essay Computers Technology
  • Essay Computer Certification
  • Essay Consumer Electronics
  • Essay Contact Lenses
  • Essay Cooking
  • Essay Copywriting
  • Essay Corporate gifts
  • Essay Crafts
  • Essay Crafts articles
  • Essay Craigslist
  • Essay Creating an online business
  • Essay Creativity
  • Essay Credit
  • Essay Credit Card
  • Essay Credit Cards
  • Essay Credit score
  • Essays Credit Cards
  • Essay Credit Card Debt
  • Essay Criminology
  • Essay Cruise Ships
  • Essay Cruises
  • Essay Currency Trading
  • Essay Customer Service
  • Essay Dance
  • Essays Data Recovery
  • Essay Data Recovery
  • Essay Dating
  • Essay Dating Women
  • Essay Debt
  • Essay Debt Consolidation
  • Essay Decorating for Christmas
  • Essay Dental
  • Essay Dental Assistant
  • Essay Depression
  • Essay Destinations
  • Essay Diabetes
  • Essay Diamonds
  • Essay Diesel VS Gasoline vehicles
  • Essay Dieting
  • Essay Digital Camera
  • Essay Digital photography
  • Essay Digital Cameras
  • Essays Digital cameras
  • Essay Digital Products
  • Essay Disease Illness
  • Essay Disneyland
  • Essay Divorce
  • Essay Divorce rebuild life
  • Essay Dogs
  • Essay Domains
  • Essay EBay
  • Essay Ebooks
  • Essay Ecommerce
  • Essay Education
  • Essay Elderly Care
  • Essay Elliptical trainers
  • Essay Email Marketing
  • Essay Emergency preparation
  • Essay Entrepreneurs
  • Essay Environmental
  • Essay Writing
  • Essay Ethics
  • Essay Eventplanning
  • Essay Excavation Equipment
  • Essay Exercise
  • Essay Extra Income
  • Essay Extreme
  • Essay Ezine Marketing
  • Essay Ezine Publishing
  • Essay Family Budget
  • Essay Fashion
  • Essay Fashion school
  • Essay Feng shui
  • Essay Finance
  • Essay Finance and insurance
  • Essay Fishing
  • Essay Fitness
  • Essay Fitness Equipment
  • Essay Food Beverage
  • Essay Forex
  • Essay Formula D Racing
  • Essay Forums
  • Essay Fruit Trees
  • Essays Fruit Trees
  • Essay Fundraising
  • Essay Gambling
  • Essay Gambling Casinos
  • Essay Games
  • Essay Garage Remodeling
  • Essay Gardening
  • Essay General
  • Essay Goal Setting
  • Essay Golden Retriever
  • Essays Golden Retriever
  • Essay Golf
  • Essay Google Sense
  • Essays Google Adsense
  • Essay Gourmet
  • Essay Government
  • Essay Grief
  • Essay Hair Loss
  • Essay Happiness
  • Essay Hardware
  • Essay Health
  • Essay Health Articles Pack
  • Essay Healthy Aging
  • Essay Healthy Eating
  • Essay Health Fitness
  • Essay Health Insurance articles
  • Essay High Definition Video Cameras
  • Essay High Definition Video Cameras
  • Essay Hiking and Camping
  • Essay Hobbies
  • Essay Hobby Articles
  • Essay Holiday Games Activities
  • Essays Holiday Games Activities
  • Essay Holidays
  • Essay Home and constructions
  • Essay Home decorating
  • Essay Home Schooling
  • Essay Home Security
  • Essay Home Theater Systems
  • Essay Home Theater
  • Essay Homeschooling
  • Essay Home Security
  • Essay Home Based Business
  • Essay Home Entertainment
  •  
    Free Essay
    9.2 of 10 on the basis of 2757 Review.
     

     

     

     

     

     

         
     
    How to choose an answering service part ii

     

    In my last article, we covered four basics: 1. take advantage of any free trial periods, 2. watch out for long contracts, 3. get references, and 4. don’t be too concerned with high prices. For this article, we will assume that you have diligently followed the 4 steps in the first article and are ready for the next evolution – how to your answering service running smoothly. We will explore a few industry tips & tricks on how to keep your service professional and reliable. First & foremost, don’t ask too much of your call center. This is not meant as don’t expect your answering service to do their job, but instead, keep their responsibilities short & sweet. As with any individual, the more tasks they are required to do, the more room arises for error. The main point here is “Shortness Equals Success”. What do I mean by that? First, keep your answer phrase short (i. e. how the operators pick up your line). Second, keep the information they gather from the caller at a minimum. Third, make sure your contact information is not a labyrinth of pager numbers, e-mail addresses, home phone numbers, and cell phone numbers (i. e. call Jim at home, if he is not there, e-mail him, if he does not respond page him and call his cell phone, etc.). Try to make sure your employees keep their cell phones with them at all times as this seems the best way to keep steady contact with the call center. Second, place regular test calls to your call center. Consider your answering service your employee. As with any employee, if left un-supervised, they will start to evolve into a less than model representative of your business. Make sure every 10 or so days you place a test call to your answering service to see how they are managing your calls. Don’t always call at the same time of day, instead try to stagger the times when you call as sometimes the afternoon staff is more efficient then the evening staff or vice versa. If you experience any problems, notify your call center liaison immediately and place another test call shortly thereafter to ensure the problem was rectified. Third, make sure you have a healthy relationship with your call center. Treat them as you would treat your own employee. Be friendly and courteous and you will be treated the same. Imagine your own business and your own clients. Are there clients that are never satisfied no matter what you do? Would you rather lose their business than spend 10% of your day managing their complaints? Rather then the “the more I yell, the more efficient they will be” premise, try to base your relationship on “the nicer I am, the nicer they will be” premise. Fourth, perfection is not immediate. Based on the conjecture that your answering service is your employee, they are probably not going to “get it right” the first time you forward your phones. As with any employee, they need time to grow and learn about your business and their duties relative to your needs as a business owner. Have patience, be helpful, keep it simple, and they should flourish.

         
    How to choose the right small business billing software

     

    If you own or manage a small business, you know how much time can be spent chasing down paper invoices, purchase orders and sales reports. It can be a real nightmare! That is where billing software comes in. It allows you to record all your customers, sales, invoices, inventory, suppliers (and more) in a PC-based system that is easy to use. Deciding that you need to invest in good quality billing software is not hard. The tricky part can be choosing the right software package for your requirements. There are dozens of systems on the market claiming to be the holy grail of all your business problems, but choosing the wrong one can cost you valuable time and money. Here's a simple checklist of 11 things to look for when purchasing billing software for your small business: 1) Customer records This is the core element of any billing system. What sort of information do you need to record about your customers? There's the obvious things like address, phone, fax, mobile, email and web address. But what about marketing-related information like "how did the customer find out about your business?", and "standard discounts" for key clients. 2) Multiple contacts & Communication history If many of your clients are businesses with multiple contacts, can you record individual contact details for each person? Word of mouth is the most powerful form of advertising, and statistics show that one of the most important factors in customer satisfaction is good customer service. Have you thought about keeping a log of all communication with your customers? It can be extremely helpful for improving internal communication within your business, and results in a more personalised service for your clients. 3) Multiple shipments Obviously your billing software will need to create sales orders - that's a gimme. But do you need to record employee-related information, like who the "salesperson" was? What about flexible dispatch options, like multiple shipments per sales order? 4) Search facility There's no point recording all this really useful information if there's no easy way to get to it. Check that the search facility is flexible and easy to use. What criteria can you search by? Here are a couple useful fields you may want to use: customer phone number, customer address, order date, dispatch date and dispatch consignment number. 5) Tax & regional support Are you able to change the tax rates on an order line basis? What about currency formatting? If you and your clients are in Europe, then there's no point using billing software that can only handle US dollars. 6) Reporting Producing accurate reports in seconds is something you no longer have to dream about. In fact it is a necessity in today's competitive market. Ensure your billing software can calculate information on sales based on date, salesperson and customer type. If you operate a B2B business, another key performance indicator may be dispatch totals, based on date, and employee. But one important thing to remember about software... you can only get out what you put in. So if you are looking for a specific report, make sure that information is being recorded by your billing software package. 7) Backup I've seen first-hand how devastating a hardware failure can be. Hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of data can be destroyed in seconds... if you do not have a backup procedure in place. Ensure you select a billing software package that has a built-in backup utility or works with your current backup system. 8) Online help & support If you're a new computer user, then you'll definitely need a software package that has a comprehensive online and easy-to-use help system. Also check out what direct technical support is available through the vendor. Some software companies charge very high fees for personal support, so ensure you include this in your budget. 9) Budget How much are you going to spend? That really depends on the complexity of the software package you are looking for. Smaller software packages can be found under US$100, and larger more complex packages can cost well over US$3000. Take a look at the number of customers you have, the number of sales orders you process, and choose a solution that fits your business. 10) Customisations If you purchase an off-the-shelf billing software package, you may require minor customisations to suit your unique business processes and industry. Some software vendors offer customisations at quite reasonable prices. But ensure you include this cost in your budget. 11) Other features What else do you want from you billing software? If you deal with fixed price products, you may need a comprehensive inventory management system allowing you to purchase stock, manage inventory levels and supplier relations. Some quality software packages also include a useful follow-up diary, allowing you to keep track of tasks and assign them to other staff members. When choosing a billing software package for your business, make sure you check that it offers everything your business needs. And then the only thing you'll have to worry about is what to do with all your newly found spare time!

         
    How to create a newsletter name

     

    What's in a name, a newsletter name? When I wrote a plan for my e-mail newsletter, developing a name was a critical part of the planning process. To develop it, I used a strategic approach. In other words, worked backward from my objectives to produce a newsletter name that would help me achieve those objectives. Of course, you might also consider other methods... Other Newsletter Name Methods For example, the two-column menu method. Take a word from Column A, let's say the company name, and a word from Column B, perhaps one of the standards like Gazette, or Chronicle, or Times. That gives us a utilitarian newsletter name like The Acme Gazette (assuming Acme is the company name). Then there are reader contests. They work well for employee newsletters and member newsletters because readers get involved, making them feel they're part of the newsletter. Or how about the clever method? Using brainstorming and creative thinking; the outcome a clever play on words or concepts. And, then there's the benefits approach, a good tactic for customer newsletters. Take the product name plus a word or phrase that describes its most important benefit, and you've got a high-potential newsletter name. The Strategic Newsletter Name Method I decided, though, to use the strategic approach, which builds on objectives, and that seemed appropriate since this newsletter would explore the strategic side of organizational communication. The newsletter has three objectives: 1. Supporting sales of my book, A Manager's Guide to Newsletters, by directing readers to the book's website, 2. Creating additional streams of revenue by selling ads in the newsletter, and 3. Associating my name (Abbott) with the idea of strategic communication. Let's start with an easy one, objective 3, which calls for building an association between my name and the concept of strategic communication. So, my last name, at least, should go into the newsletter name. Second, every newsletter or e-zine name should include some functional information. That way readers get an immediate idea of its content. Objective 3 refers to communication so the word 'communication' should get into the title. That also helps me connect with objective number 1; as you will have noted, the subtitle of the book is Communicating for Results. But, should it say communication, or more specifically strategic communication? Obviously the latter describes the content more precisely, but, the newsletter will be distributed by e-mail, so shorter is better. Second, the idea of strategic communication is a relatively uncommon one, and might reduce advertising sales (the second objective). Focusing on objective 2, it helps if the type of medium (in this case a newsletter) is immediately identifiable. But, should I call it a newsletter, or should I call it an e-zine, which refers to an online newsletter or magazine? I prefer 'newsletter' because my target audience is comprised of managers, who spend a limited amount of time online, and may not know what 'e-zine' means. But, the length of the word 'newsletter' is an issue, because we want the name to fit in the subject line of an e-mail reader. So instead of 'newsletter,' I went with just 'letter.' That also adds a degree of personalization, because letter suggests a one-on-one relationship. Pulling the pieces together I end up with Abbott's Communication Letter. I think the name satisfies all the objectives, and aptly describes a newsletter that explores how managers can use communication to help achieve their goals. When you start looking for a newsletter name, think strategically before making a final decision. Not all newsletter names have the same potential.

         
    How to cultivate the trust factor in business

     

    In today’s highly competitive economy, it is difficult to maintain a significant market advantage based on your professional skills alone. Developing trusting relationships with your clients is vital to your business success as well. No matter what business you are in, the most powerful value-added contribution you can make to any business relationship is the trust factor. The trust factor is even more critical in today’s business climate with the level of trust in Corporate America continuing to be at an all-time low, and suspicion of “all things corporate” remaining on the rise. To make matters worse, large corporations and small businesses alike continue to use antiquated techniques, such as gizmos and gadgets, to try to win over new clients. When instead, they should be trying to address the heart of the matter by utilizing trust-building techniques that will most effectively resonate with consumers and new prospects. Clients and prospects are in search of trust in their business relationships, but building trust and credibility does not happen overnight. To cultivate trust, it takes the risk of being open with clients and prospects. This enables them to perceive you as a real person—one with strengths and weaknesses that come into play as the relationship develops. When trust is reciprocal, you will find that your confidence in others is rewarded by their support and reinforcement of what you also stand for as a business entity. What is Trust What is trust? Trust can be defined as a firm belief in the honesty of another and the absence of suspicion regarding his motives or practices. The concept of trust in business dealings is simple: Build on an individual’s confidence in you and eliminate fear as an operating principle. Letting Go of Fear Let go of fear, which restricts your ability to relate to others. Letting go frees you of behavioral constraints that can immobilize your emotional and professional development. Fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of being hurt, fear of the unknown—all these are roadblocks to developing and growing a trusting relationship with clients. Let go of your fear of losing an account or not having the right answers. Leave all your fears at the client or prospect’s doorstep. Other critical steps in cultivating trust are knowing who you are and knowing your potential value to your clients. The relationship that forms because of this can have a tremendous impact on your sales. People don’t just buy from anyone. They buy from people they can trust. The rapport and credibility you can establish with the trust factor go a long way toward building a client’s confidence in your ability to meet his business needs. Trust has both an active and a passive component in a business relationship. The active feeling of trust is confidence in the leadership, veracity, and reliability of the other party, based on a track record of performance. The passive feeling of trust is the absence of worry or suspicion. This absence is sometimes unrecognized and frequently taken for granted in our most productive relationships. Building Trust With Care So how do you build trust with clients? First, you need to care about them. Obviously your clients care about your knowledge, expertise, and accomplishments. However, they care even more about the level of concern you have for them. Successful trust building hinges on four actions: engaging, listening, framing, and committing. The trust factor can be realized once we understand these components of trust and incorporate them in our daily lives. Engaging clients and prospects occurs when you show genuine concern and interest in their business and its problems. Maintain good eye contact and body posture. Good eye contact signifies openness and honesty. And your body language and other forms of nonverbal communication speak volumes about your attitude toward them. By the same token, you want to be cognizant of your client’s or prospect’s eye contact and body language. Listening with understanding and empathy is possible if you think client focus first. Let the client tell his story. Put yourself in his shoes when you listen to his business concerns, purpose, vision, and desires. Show approval or understanding by nodding your head and smiling during the conversation. Separate the process of taking in information from the process of judging it. Just suspend your judgment and focus on the client. Framing what the client or prospect has said is the third action in trust building. Make sure you have formed an accurate understanding of his problems and concerns. Confirm what you think you heard by asking open-ended questions such as “What do you mean by that?” or “Help me to understood the major production problems you are experiencing.” After you have clarified the problems, start to frame them in order of importance. By identifying the areas in which you can help the client, you offer him clarity in his own mind and continue to build his trust. Committing is the final action for developing the trust factormunicate enthusiastically your plan of action for solving the client’s problems. Help the client see what it will take to achieve the end result. Presumably, what you have said up to this point has been important, but what you do now—how you commit—is even more important. Remember the old adage “Action speaks louder than words.” Show you want this client’s business long termplete assignments and projects on budget and on time. Then follow up with clients periodically to see how your partnership is faring. In the final analysis, trust stems from keeping our word. If we say we will be there for our clients, then we should honor that commitment by being there. Trust results from putting the client’s best interest before our own, from being dependable, from being open and forthcoming with relevant information. It is impossible to overestimate the power of the trust factor in our professional lives. Truly, trust is the basis of all enduring, long-term business relationships.

         
    How to cut your business expenses

     

    : I learned about business expenses at one of my first jobs. It was in a fast food restaurant, working as an assistant manager I was responsible for placing the orders for food and supplies. I noticed how many thousands of dollars we spent on ketchup, mayonnaise and other sauce packets. Then I watched for a while, to see how many the employees were handing out at the drive-through window. Pretty quickly, I realized that many of the employees were putting a handful of packets in the bag for customers - before even asking if they wanted any. It was time for a new policy, I decided. I informed all the employees that they were to ask the customers if they wanted ketchup, mustard or any other sauce packets. Then they were to either ask how many they wanted, or let the customer see them putting just a few in the bag, so the customer could ask for more if they wanted more. The customers were happy, and fewer packets went out that window. How many fewer? I don't remember exactly. What I do remember, is that after tracking our subsequent use of sauce packets, I discovered that the new policy was saving the restaurant about $2,000 per year. I later found a way to rework the schedule to save $15,000 annually on labor costs, while providing better customer service. These business expenses add up. It's important to note that money saved is often pure profit. The owners made $15,000 more profit when my new way of scheduling saved them $15,000 in labor costs. To increase profits $15,000 from new sales, they would have needed $60,000 more in sales (after costs, profits are only 25% of sales in this particular business). In other words, finding ways to save money can be a powerful way to increase your profits. One Way To Reduce Your Business Expenses Of all the ways to save money, the first thing to try is to simply list everything that your business spends money on. Include even the toilet paper in your public restroom if you have one. Include everything. Now take each item and consider any possible ways you can spend less on it. Write down the workable ideas and act on them. This is such a simple idea, but how often have you done it? If you have ever done this simple exercise even once in the history of your business, you are probably doing better than most business owners in controlling your business expenses.

         
    How to deal with no

     

    No one likes rejection. And yet it happens. Here's how to make the most of it. > Accept It Recognize that it is impossible for everyone to say "yes" to everything. Thus, rejection is an expected byproduct of making an offer or asking for something. Some people make rejection part of their sales strategy. That is, they deliberately send out a flood of requests, knowing that most of them will be rejected. Thus, if you want to increase your rate of acceptances you need to collect more rejections. > Be Gracious Always thank the other person for a rejection. Congratulate them. And be polite. This makes it easier for them to explain why they rejected your offer and it leaves them feeling that you are a good person. On the other hand, using insults, guilt, anger, or other high pressure techniques will upset the person. That solidifies the rejection and ruins any further dialogue. Always respect the other person's decision. > Explore Why When you receive a rejection, ask the other person to explain what led to the decision. In sales, this is often when the selling really starts. You may be able to resolve the other person's objections and convert a "no" into a "yes." You may also learn that the other person misunderstood your request. Or you may learn about other needs that you may be able to meet. You can also use this as an opportunity to gain ideas on how you can improve. Of course, be gracious. Be polite. > Stop When It's Over If the other person refuses to explain or if you are unable to overcome the other person's objections, then the deal is over. Stop trying when it is clear that the conversation is over. Nobody likes to be badgered or hounded after they have made a choice. > In General Notice that accepting rejection involves treating the other person with respect and dignity. Be gracious and then move on. Leave them wondering if they made a mistake, which could leave the way open for other possibilities.

         
    How to deal with salespeople

     

    If you're an executive, you may feel like a open jelly sandwich at a picnic. Every crazy critter in the world wants to bite into your budget. Here's how to protect your time and preserve your sanity. 1) Ask questions Many salespeople work from a script. Rather than let them read it, interrupt with, "Excuse me." Then determine the purpose of the call by asking questions such as, "What are you selling?" or "Why are you calling?" Set bounds on the call by stating that you will take one minute to hear their offer and that you have a timer. Cut through the enticement by getting the facts that you need to decide if their offer has value. 2) Just say no If you have no interest in the offer, tell the salesperson, "No." If you have no interest in the company, product, or service, ask to be removed from their call list. Be polite and firm. Simply say, "We have no need for your service. Please remove my name from your list." Avoid small talk, arguments, or complaints. All of these waste your time and lead to nothing. In addition, savvy sales people appreciate candor. It frees them to proceed with their business. 3) Decline literature If you attempt to rid yourself of a salesperson by asking for information, you cause three bad things to happen. 1) You guarantee a return call ("Hi, did you get what I sent?"). 2) You waste the salesperson's money. 3) You add to the mail that you have to process. Thus, decline literature unless you are interested in the offer. Similarly, decline appointments, trial samples, or invitations that you know you would cancel. And never ask for a proposal if you have already selected another provider. 4) Return phone messages Sadly, some people attempt to say "no" by ignoring the caller. This is a terrible strategy for two reasons. First, the caller does not know what you are doing. They will conclude that you may be traveling or sick and thus call again, and again, and again. Second, ignoring someone is rude, especially if you asked the person to call you, send a proposal, or provide information. (Special note: every vendor is also a customer. Insulting people can backfire by costing you business.) If you want to end a dialogue without talking to the person, call (or have an assistant call) and leave a message during off hours (early morning, late evening, weekends). Most good business people appreciate candor and understand the word, "No." 5) Use voice mail Strategic voice mail can protect your time. Rather than leave an outgoing message stating that you will return calls, leave a message that helps screen calls. For example, your message could state, "Hi this is Pat Smith. Leave a message if you have an work related issue. If you are selling wingnuts, do not leave a message because we are not buying them." or "If you are selling something, call Chris at Extension 101." In the latter case, Chris may be someone assigned to screen sales calls. 6) Be open to possibilities Realize that the caller is another human being, trying to earn a living. In addition, that caller may also be a customer or able to influence your customers. Thus, rather than immediately reject every call, consider that some of the offers may help you improve your business and make your job easier. Treat callers with the respect and courtesy that you expect from others. You will find valuable opportunities when you give them a fair chance to explain why they called. And you can always say, "No."

         
    How to ensure your employee incentive program pays off

     

    Non-cash incentive programs and fringe benefits can have a powerful influence on attitudes, that should in turn improve results. You can give employees the greatest incentive program, however, by impairing a sense of ownership in the organization. Ultimately, loyal and happy employees tend to work harder, leading to increased overall productivity. 1. Share Ownership Use share schemes as an incentive program to reward people for contributing to team success. An employee who sees his or her efforts rewarded in company shares will, in theory, identify with the company, be committed to its success, and perform more effectively. A company with shares in the company will see that, quite literally, their sucess is the company's sucess, and vice versa. The harder they work, the better chance their shares have of increasing in value. In reality, it may be hard to tell whether the company’s success is due to employees owning shares, or whether the success itself has the led the company to issue shares. It is also difficult to know whether employees would have performed less effectively if no shares had changed hands. Nevertheless, by giving people a stake in the company as an incentive program, you are making a highly positive statement about them, that encourages them to feel positive in return. 2. Gifts Aren't Just For Christmas Surprise people with gifts they do not expect. Expected remuneration has less impact than the unexpected. Even generous pay rises are taken for granted after a while, as salary increases accordingly. Incentive programs are like a far smaller payment, in the form of a gift, and are priceless in the eyes of the recipient. An employee could use a cash award to buy a gift, perhaps a weekend vacation, but that would provide less satisfaction than an incentive program in kind from the management as a reward for work well done. Consider which incentive program is better: A company called for a special meeting for all of the employees that had achieved the sales quota for the month. In the meeting, the company announced that the incentive is a gift certificate. They went to the Accounting Department, as instructed, signed their name, and off they go. Or: The company gave them a specialized mug embossed with the word Congratulations, plus a special card with a special message personally written by the manager. Between the two incentive programs, the latter is more appreciative. Gift certificates could be a good incentive program but it is sometimes taxable, so they get only a fraction of what was written on it. Plus, the first incentive program lacks personalization. On the other hand, the second incentive program is far more favourable. A more specialized and personalized gift ideas as incentive program can be more appreciated. It makes your employee feel that they are individually valued especially if it comes with a thank you note. Best of all, presents are also a better incentive program and a cost-effective method of motivating staff when cash is short or when competition does not allow an increase in pay. 3. Optimize Benefits Fringe benefits have become much less effective incentive programs financially in many countries because of tax changes, as mentioned earlier. Good pension schemes, however, have become more attractive as incentive programs wherever state-funded provision have fallen. The same applies to medical insurance. The knowledge that the company cares for its people in sickness, health, and old age is a basic yet a powerful factor. Other benefits - Company cars - Paternity leave - Vacations - Help with children’s education - Medical care - Mobile phones - Computers - Spas 4. Bequeath Status The modern company, with its flat structure, horizontal management, and open style, avoids status symbols that are divisive and counter-productive. Reserve parking places and separate dining rooms are rightly avoided. Important-sounding job titles are easy and economical forms of incentive that provide recognition and psychological satisfaction. Giving people incentive programs of any kind sends a very positive signal. As they say, it’s the thought that counts.

         
    How to get things done a guide to strategic planning

     

    A step-by-step program for creating a strategic plan and tactical plan guaranteed to help you get more of what you want done. You are pursuing a strategy en route to your vision. Whether it is revolutionary or evolutionary, it does not matter. You are on the road, committedly driving your business in a direction of your own choosing. The important thing is that you have, in fact, chosen this course. And, once you have made this choice, how are you going to realize this strategy? The answer is just like the answer to "How do you climb Mount Everest?" One step at a time. The way you realize your strategy is one step at a time - the trick, of course, is to know what steps to take, and in what order to take them. This article details an approach to developing a strategic and tactical plan. Completing the past The first step in creating a strategic plan is to review and complete the previous past period. For the balance of this article, we will refer to that period as a year, although your planning horizon may be either longer or shorter. You complete the past for two reasons - to learn everything possible from your previous actions, results, and mistakes, and as importantly, so that what ever is left over, whatever issues are hanging over your head, are no longer a burden. Answer the following questions: What were your intentions, what were your goals? What did you set out to accomplish? What intentions did you really take action on and which ones did you merely talk about? Specifically, what did you actually accomplish? How effective were you? What percentage of your goals were realized? For instance, if your goal was $14 million in sales and you reached $12 million, you were 85% effective. And so on. What did you accomplish that you didn't intend? What were the unintended side effects? In your opinion, what did you do "wrong"? What did you simply skip? One useful practice is to write a detailed, objective history of the past year. Document the year's events and results in journal form. Your records will be a big help - use your date book and your sales ledgers to reconstruct this narrative. Gather up whatever you learned. Three questions will assist you in this phase. What did you do that worked? In other words, what actions produced the results they were intended to produce? What didn't work - what actions (or lack of actions) produced something other than the desired result? And finally, what was missing - in terms of missing resources, skills, knowledge, attitudes, relationships, etc. - which if you had them would have enabled you to be more successful? At this point you should be ready to move forward without dragging the past with you. Set priorities Using your values, beliefs, vision and strategy as a guide - establish priority issues for the coming year. Presuming your resources are limited, you may not be able to impact all areas of the business at once. Take a look at the following list - in which of these areas do you most want to make a difference? product development market penetration revenue and profit customer satisfaction technology and product quality intellectual capital productivity strategic relationships new customer growth geographic expansion employee retention community and global impact Add other areas which are relevant to your business. Then choose which you will focus your attention on. Some prioritizing questions to ask are: What particular area is important? By important I mean that which will move you forward in the direction of your vision, goals, etc. Why is that area important? What will a shift in a particular area provide to the business (or specific categories of stakeholders)? What will not causing that shift cost the business? Once you have decided in which areas you will focus your efforts on (and also which will not receive much attention), you then establish goals, or measures for success. Here is where things can get tricky. The standard approach to establishing measures for success is to "look around" and try to figure out what is practical. "We did X last year, now we'll do X plus 10%." Then you think about what you know how to do. "Well, we know how to do an extra 10%. Good - that's what we'll shoot for." The catch is, this approach will get you some pretty practical, incremental, and average results. And while there is certainly nothing wrong with average results, my guess is, that is not why you are reading this article. To get extraordinary, breakthrough results, you have to step outside your normal confines and dream a little. Set your goals by considering what will move you rapidly towards realizing your vision, what will quickly implement your strategy, and go from there. Set goals - establish success measures which will inspire you! Do not think about how you will achieve the measures or goals before you set them. That will only limit your thinking. Establish Measures and Goals Establish a clear set of measures for each area of focus. In Product Development you could add two new products for your target niche, or a new product which will enable you to penetrate a targeted customer segment. In Customer Satisfaction and Quality you could reduce open customer incident time by three days, raise your customer satisfaction metrics from a 7.3 to a 9.0, or eliminate defects in your final product release. You could Geographically Expand into Canada, Mexico or the Northwest. Employee retention and Intellectual Capital would be impacted by reducing turnover from 14% to 5%, providing 50% more training days for employees and targeting an increase in patents held from 2 to 5. You could increase Market Penetration, Revenues and Profits by adding 25% to the customer base, increasing service revenues 100%, and raising your net profit margin to 23%. Place a time frame on each measure and turn it into a goal. Total customers increased 25% by September 30th is a clear-cut goal. It fits nicely on the end of a timeline. Initiatives You have measures, you have goals - now develop a plan to reach them. For each measure within an area, invent one or more initiatives which help you reach your goal. Sometimes the initiatives are relatively simple, such as hire a salesman for the new Northwest territory. There may be alternate options such as contracting with a distributor in lieu of a local sales force. In that case you have to evaluate suitability, costs, resource drain, and the likelihood of success for the various options before committing to one path. Sometimes achieving the goal will require a series of initiatives, or parallel initiatives. Increasing the customer base 25% may involve direct mail, print and web advertising, two new sales reps, a phone campaign, and working the dead customer file. Alternatively, it could involve acquiring a competitor, or maybe the competing product line. Each of these initiatives then requires its own measures for success. And each one must be evaluated in terms of suitability, costs, and likelihood of success. Action steps, milestones, and timelines When you have chosen the suite of initiatives you will pursue, break each into action steps and intermediate results, and place the whole thing on a timeline. Include acquisition of missing resources and skills on the timeline. Set regular milestones to keep the whole effort on track, and have a way to blow the whistle when things get off course. Develop a tracking system, and update it regularly and often. A big white board or flip chart paper taped to the wall can display your timeline, including measures, milestones, and commitments made by various team members defining what will be accomplished each tracking period. Project management software is useful for complex initiatives - it helps you visualize and account for "dependencies." If you use it, email reports to all participants. The Merlin Method For some of your areas and measures of success you are clueless - you simply have no idea how to achieve the results. In this case, you can use the Merlin Method. Merlin, you may remember, was a magician and prophet who served as counselor to King Arthur. What you may not know is that Merlin did not really predict the future. Legend says Merlin was born as an old man and lived his life growing younger. He was simply relating events which for him had already happened. The Merlin Method is based on this same principle. Imagine you are standing at the end of a long timeline - you have already achieved your specific goal. Imagine or visualize, how did you do it? What actions did you take? What resources did you secure? Who's help did you enlist? Ask these questions in a stepwise fashion starting from the end. What was the last significant thing you had to do just before reaching the goal. Put that on your timeline. And just before that, what did you have to do? And just before that? And so on, moving closer and closer in time, right up until the present. If you were taking a family trip, imagine yourself at your destination. What did you do just before you got there? You exited US 10 at exit 54. And before that? You exited US 15 at Riverside, having driven 67 miles. And before that, you bundled the kids into the car. Before that you put the luggage in the trunk. Before that you packed. Before that you went online and got directions. And so on. Working backwards from the realization of the goal, you have developed a timeline, complete with milestones - working from your collected knowledge and wisdom, but not necessarily from your conscious mind. The Merlin Method can be a very powerful way to generate set of tactical actions to realize your business strategy. For a reality check, think it through forward. If you add the necessary resources, skills, and knowledge, take each action in turn, and reach each milestone, is that likely to produce the results you intend to produce? You can even use the Merlin Method to generate alternative plans to evaluate against your other approaches. Using one or more of these methods, you have developed a strategic and tactical plan - a complete set of strategic priorities, measures, goals, and initiatives, along with action plans, milestones, resources requirements, and timelines - built upon your strategy and designed to realize your vision.

         
    How to get your staff to bend over backwards for you no matter what

     

    The constant struggle to get people to want to work for you is an enigma most business owners wrestle with. I have isolated successful methods through growing my multi-million dollar company from the ground up. In my experience it all comes down to how you want to be treated. I was raised in a lovey-dovey family where my parents wanted me to feel great about myself. Maybe it is because I was raised Jewish and all Jewish mothers think their children are superior – who knows... Whatever the reason, I grew up hearing and believing I could do anything. That kind of confidence instilled in me led me to believe that I could instill that confidence in others. When I first started out I could not afford to hire expensive help and found the most successful type of personnel for my business were young, inexperienced adults in their late teens that had an abundance of willingness. And I do mean an abundance of it – in my viewpoint, there is no better commodity. A Little Bit Goes a Long Way My Senior Vice President over Operations and Quality Control who now manages six other executives and a colossal number of employees was only 19 years old when she started with me. Now she is 27. She had that willingness, but virtually no experience. I recall then that she wanted $10.00 per hour. I would only give her $9.00 but I gave her an incentive – to prove to me she was worth it before I consented to that kind of pay (which was a lot of money to me at the time). She did so well that I gave her $11.50 per hour within two weeks of her hire date. That little bit extra that I did went a long way. She took notice and she consistently proved to me that she could do even more. That was the first time I noticed that rewarding your employees for hard work really paid off. Today, she makes a six-figure income and earns every penny. I love to validate and reward the staff – it is a driving force of mine in my company. We have an “employee of the month” that gets company recognition and a designated parking space as well as an “employee of the year” that gets a three-day trip to the Big Apple, plus spending money. Not to mention the runner up gets no short shrift. And my employees work their tails off for those coveted prizes, but mainly for the pride they feel after doing so well. The stipulations are that they go above and beyond the call of duty and really set great examples for the rest of the group. I’ve never seen such stellar work from staff at other companies that don’t acknowledge and don’t reward – I know because I used to work at them. More Freedom = More Responsibility A major factor in increasing the responsibility level of the employees is giving them more freedom and responsibility. If you do, they will own their position. The best employees are those that really take ownership of their position and run it like it was their very own company. You may think that it is a bit precarious to let someone run their area like it was their own company because what if they took it way off course from what you had designed where that organization would go? Well, I found that the more freedom I gave my executives to do the job the way they thought it should be done based on their understanding of the company’s goals, they became even better at what they did. That really opened my eyes. It was like the circle of life – they would do better and better to warrant the responsibility I had given them. Another manager of mine is a great example of this. When she first came to work for me, she didn’t necessarily make me feel confident that she could do the job – but she sure was willing. And I have a philosophy about just throwing them in and seeing if they can make it go right or die trying. She impressed me. She did a great job over and over again. I couldn’t help but acknowledge and validate her. She was only 18 years old when she started working for me and I was so amazed how well she did her job – she was neat, tidy, systematic and never made mistakes – so I told her how great she was all the time. The end result? This shy girl just blossomed into one of my fifteen executives who has several subordinates and runs a tight ship. So, I learned that the way I should treat people is the way I like being and have been treated. I know it’s the Golden Rule that many of us have heard or read, but I learned to apply this in regards to staff and it works well for me. I grew up knowing that it works from the recipient end. I used it later in business and learned how much it really empowers others when you tell them they can – it becomes instinctive. Application of that in the corporate world brings out the natural abilities of the people you bestow that confidence in. Their abilities really start to shine through. I remember another girl that worked in my company in the early days. We’ll call her “American Mary” (she chose that nickname herself) even though that’s not her name. She wasn’t a real fast duplicator or speedy at comprehending; but I learned that if I wanted to work with her, I had to, in essence, “Be” her. Incidentally, a marketing principle that helps a graphic designer attain a better idea of what kind of design will “pull” (get responses) for a totally alien industry to that said designer is to learn to “Be” the recipient of the direct mail piece. Once someone learns to assume the views and ideas of the recipient, then he can design something that will elicit a reach – a call or an order, etc. This principle also applies to employees. “American Mary” could not work with a certain person in my company because he would not tolerate her slowness. He couldn’t or wouldn’t understand what it was like to be her. So, he barked his orders as fast as he usually did and he got nowhere. On the other hand, I would just “Be” her. I’d slow it down, be really kind, maybe draw a map for her even if she had been there five times before…and she would do anything for me. And she’d make sure she’d do a perfect job if she knew it was for me. Even today, she still calls me from Europe every now and then just to say hello. Ask Not What I Can Do For You… It all comes down to the point of exchanging properly with an employee; and that’s a tough one to balance. The person has to bring in a return to the company. With my employees and my executives, I start at what I can afford to pay them. I provide them an atmosphere where they can prosper by giving them the freedom to do the job themselves – always observing that they have the willingness as the biggest factor. In the initial interview process, I tell them the truth: “I expect the world. You are expected to give 110% and take pride in a job well done. You give to me first and then I’ll exchange back with you.” And I do. I demand a lot. And when they deliver and go above and beyond what I expect, I give back to them over and above what they expect. It’s that circle of life concept I was talking about earlier. Another example of how to apply this is to spread their accolades through word of mouth. I don’t ever plan this; I just may be talking to my PR about one of my designers and I just say how great that designer is doing - and guess what? Next thing you know that designer has heard about it. That really does something for the person you are praising. They know you think they are great at their job and that really makes them want to work even harder for you. Loyalty Pays Off The President of my company, Jennifer Custer, is a gem. I recall one day her mother asking me what the gross income was for the week. She said she wanted to know so she could predict what kind of weekend she was going to have. I didn’t understand – what did this have to do with her weekend? I found out; Jenn was not fun to be around when the company’s revenue was down. I learned from her mother that she wanted so badly to make it, for me and the company, that when she did not, she really felt down. I never thought that she wore her duties that personally. To instill that kind of loyalty you have to be loyal. When somebody flows me a lot of help in a particular area, I never forget it, I never disconnect from that. I have someone that was with me that has been with me from the beginning. She was a “Doubting Thomas” and would comment behind my back that I “sure had a big pipe dream in regards to growing the company.” But she was really good at her post – her division does a lot of production in that area and she runs it well. They are result driven and have deadlines that would even try the patience of Job. It would have been hard to replace her, plus she had been with me so long. Once my President found out that she was negating my dreams to others, she addressed it and that person never did it again. But I never held onto that as a grudge. In fact, I ended up giving her a raise above what her position was worth in our geographical area. In my opinion, she had warranted it – the good she constantly did surely outweighed her verbal negativity. She was with me a long time and truly developed her area. I never disconnected from her because she helped me, despite her verbal transgression. Not only did she make amends for what she has ever said about me, she would never naysay me or my company again, and now she’ll probably never leave me. So always take a look at what the staff member DOES (as opposed to says), regardless of the apparency. Lastly, I think it’s important and warrants mentioning that I want my employees to enjoy their time here at work. I've had a few jobs where I hated going in to work in the morning and couldn't wait until the end of the day. Although I've learned that ultimately I am responsible for my condition in life - at work and at home - I could also notice things that existed in the workplace that were surely less than optimum. I wished that there was some person to tell, someone that would listen and be able to do something about it. You need to make sure that your executives and employees know you are their friend and know that you genuinely care about them. You will build a juggernaut like I have and your executives will carry forward your ideals to the rest of your crew.

         
    How to grow your micro business

     

    If you want to grow your micro-business (defined as a business with fewer than five employees), you might consider some of the findings of a survey by Statistics Canada. 1. The Findings According to "Growth Determinants of Micro-Businesses in Canada" (Evangelia Papadaki and Bassima Chami, Small Business Policy Branch, Industry Canada), the survey by Statistics Canada revealed the following: Micro-businesses get much of their advice from family, friends, customers and suppliers. Accountants are more commonly consulted for business advice than lawyers and bankers. Completion of high school was cited as a factor for growth in the micro-business. Perhaps surprisingly, college or university education was discounted as a factor for success. Age or sex of business owners did not affect business growth. Nor was being an immigrant a significant factor. For growth, being willing to delegate, assume risk, and share ownership all seemed to be factors for success. Expansion of the local market was more important for growth than the export market for the micro-business. Growth micro-businesses innovate and engage in e-commerce activities. 2. The Opportunities This is encouraging news for entrepreneurs. You don`t necessarily need a lot of money for professional advisors to grow your micro-business. Higher education is not a prerequisite for success. Age, sex or country of origin are not relevant factors for growing your micro-business. If growth of your micro-business is your goal, you can`t do everything yourself. You must be willing to delegate (or perhaps even share ownership of your business with others). Innovation, a willingness to take risks, and use of the Internet are also important to your growth. Are you willing to delegate, take risks, and partner with others? Are you innovative? Do you employ e-commerce in your business? Are you using the Internet to expand your local business? If you can answer these questions affirmatively, then your micro-business is poised for growth.

         
    How to handle the occasional oop see

     

    Q: My company is really in hot water with one of our best customers. I can't reveal exactly what happened, but suffice it to say that we really dropped the ball and the customer is furious. I'm not even sure we can save the account. What's the best way to get back in a customer's good graces after making such a mistake? -- Charles W. A: Without knowing the full story, Charles, I can't give you a specific course of action, but let's start at the sharp end of the uh-oh stick and work our way back to see if we can come with up some advice that might help. First off, it's important that you understand that the magnitude of your mistake will determine the course of action you take to make amends. If your company's error was such that it caused your customer a significant amount of lost time or revenue, embarrassed them publicly, caused damage to their reputation, or otherwise negatively affected their bottom line, you may face legal repercussions that saying "I'm sorry" will not deter. If that's the case you should consult an attorney immediately and prepare for the worst. Whether or not the worst comes is irrelevant. You must be prepared for it. Now on to dealing with more minor offenses. As anyone who has read this column for any length of time knows, I'm cursed with daughters. I used to say I was blessed with daughters, then they learned to walk and talk. Blessed quickly became cursed. Now my oldest daughter is an inch taller than me and getting all lumpy in places I'd rather not think about. She's a sad case, really. The poor kid needs an operation. She has a cellphone growing out of her ear. But I digress… When she was a toddler she coined the phrase, "Oop-see!" Whenever she did something innocently destructive, like knock over a glass of orange juice on my new computer keyboard or shove a Pop Tart in the VCR tape slot, she would look at me with her huge brown eyes and say, "Oop-see!" My wife says there is a reason God made kids cute. Oop-see moments are evidence that she is right. Oop-see meant, "Uh oh, I didn't mean to do that. I was wrong. I'll never do that again. Forgive me? Love me? Buy me toys… Oop-see worked like a charm every time. Now, I certainly don't expect you to bat your eyes at your customer and say, "Oop-see!" but consider the effect her words had on me. Instead of screaming at the top of my lungs like I wanted to do (hey, have you ever tried to dig a Pop Tart out of a VCR) I immediately softened and found myself actually taking her side. "Aw, it's OK, really, we all make mistakes…" What my daughter had figured out is that it's hard to stay mad at someone who admits a mistake, sincerely apologizes for it, and vows never to let it happen again. Little did I know this was only one of many tactics she would employ over the years in her never-ending quest to wrap her daddy several times around her little finger, but that's a whole different column. Dale Carnegie said it best: "Any fool can try to defend his or her mistakes - and most fools do - but it raises one above the herd and gives one a feeling of nobility and exultation to admit one's mistakes." Carnegie and my daughter were basically saying the same thing: When you (or your company) make a mistake, no matter how large or small, the best thing you can do is quickly admit the error of your ways and face the consequences, come what may. Here are a few things you can do to help set things right with your customer. Assemble the facts. The very first thing you should do is find out what went wrong and why. Meet with your key people and gather the facts. Ask specific questions like: What was the mistake? What caused it? Who was involved? What could have been done to prevent the mistake from happening and what can be done to prevent it from happening again in the future. Put yourself in your customer's shoes. I've been on both ends of the uh-oh stick and neither is very comfortable. My company has dropped the ball on occasion and we have also been negatively impacted when one of our vendors did the same. Put yourself in your customer's shoes and consider what could be said or done to remedy the situation from their point of view. Take responsibility for the actions of your company. In my role as a company president there have been times when I've had to call up a customer and confess that a mistake was made, and as president it was also my responsibility to take the heat for it. Remember, you're the head cheese, Charles, you get to sit behind the big desk and take home the nice paycheck. You're also the one that gets to mop up when your employees makes a mess. It just goes with the job. Do not place the blame on specific employees. No matter how tempting it is to put the blame on specific people in your organization (even if that's where the blame lies), do not do it. It is unprofessional, counterproductive and can backfire on you, especially if the person you're blaming reports directly to you. Saying something like "My sales manager is always making mistakes like this!" is not going to make your customer feel any better. To the contrary, such statements will make the customer question your leadership ability and the quality of all your employees, not just the one that made the mistake. If you don't have faith in your company and employees, why should your customer? Don't deny that a mistake was made, especially when there is clear evidence to the contrary. You're not Richard Nixon, for petesake, so don't try to pretend that the mistake didn't happen or stage some elaborate cover-up to try and dodge the blame. Admit your mistake. This may sounds trite, but you must admit your mistake before you can move ahead and start to make amends. Don't be so afraid to take this step. I doubt your company is the first one to screw up with this customer and I can guarantee you certainly won't be the last. Apologize for the mistake. The one thing that could make the situation better is often the thing that companies find hardest to do. I don't mean to sound like Dr. Phil, but simply saying you're sorry is often the best way to get a business relationship back on track. Ensure the customer that it will never happen again. After you have taken responsibility for the mistake and apologized in a sincere and professional manner, you must then start the process of rebuilding the trust that was lost. Promising that such a mistake will not happen again is a good way to start. Compensate the customer for his loss. Even if your mistake didn't cost the customer a dime, he will appreciate an offer of compensation. This can be something as simple as a lunch on you or a discount on his next order. The size of the compensation offered should be in direct proportion to the size of your mistake. A word of warning: don't let the customer bully you into overcompensating him for your mistake. That can be more detrimental to the relationship than the mistake itself. As my daughter understood all those years ago, Charles, a sincere Oop-see can help make things all better. Here's to your success!

         
    How to hire like the fortune 500 s a guide for small businesses

     

    A recent iLogos Research study revealed 94% of Fortune 500 companies now hire employees online, a stark contrast from 1998, when only 29% of them were doing the same. If you own or manage a small business, that means the vast majority of your fiercest competitors are now spending less time and less effort on recruitment. And that leaves them with more time to, simply put, get a leg up on you. Sure, it sounds like a threat. But isn’t lack of technology an inevitable drawback for most small businesses? Absolutely not. Maybe 10, even 5 years ago. But not today. Every time we do market research with small businesses, we hear three top reasons why the business has not yet implemented an online hiring solution, in which job candidates apply online: 1. The cost is too high 2. They lack the technological know-how 3. They believe setting up a recruitment software would take longer than just doing it the old-fashioned way Those are all valid concerns, considering most small businesses operate on a tight budget and without an in-house IT department. The good news is small businesses are fundamental to the North-American economy. In fact, according to the U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA), small businesses drive the U. S. economy, representing 99.7 percent of all employer firms. In Canada, according to Statistics Canada, businesses with less that 100 employees account for 98% of all employer businesses. Business software developers are now recognizing the importance of SMBs and designing employee recruitment software that caters to the specific budgetary and technological needs of small business. It’s important to do your research and find the technology that’s the best fit for your company. When shopping around for a recruitment manager program, make sure to ask yourself the following questions: 1. Cost: Is the advertised price of this product the actual price my company is going to pay? Beware of offers that are full of limitations. For example, will you have to pay more if a lot of people apply for your job? Is there a hosting charge for filing all the applicants’ resumes? Is there a time-limit for your job posting, after which you have to pay extra charges? 2. Ease of technology: Is the technology really easy-to-use, even if I’m a computer novice? The best way to find this out is by trying the product yourself. Most companies offer free trials of their products, which are a great idea, as long they are risk free. Keeping in mind question 1, make sure the trial has no hidden charges. Also try out the front-end application process to make sure it's really going to be easy when your job candidates apply online. 3. Setup: How long will it take to get up and running? You don’t want to get stuck with a product that takes so long to setup, that by the time you’re done, you could have done everything the old-fashioned way. It’s a good idea to talk to a sales representative and ask him/her to explain to you the exact steps you’ll need to take to setup for a job. 4. The product: What’s included? What does this product do? What doesn’t it do? Some programs offer only the online job posting functionality. Others focus on the back-end, like collecting resumes, organizing, filtering and searching employees, scheduling interviews, etc. When looking for a program that takes care of the back-end, make sure the company will also be able to help you with the posting functionality, whether you’re putting up a poster on your store window, running an ad in the local paper or posting on job websites. 5. Service: Will I get a helping hand? Since most small businesses do not have an IT department, one of the most important questions to ask here is what kind of service will you get. Will you get email support? Phone support? Online Live Help? Will you be speaking to a real business person who knows about the specific challenges you’re facing, or to someone who only knows the tech aspects of the program? Remember it’s your company’s efficiency that’s at stake here, so don’t be afraid to ask questions or request a free trial. Hiring online may sound like something only fit for the big guys, but remember this is the 21st century, which means technology and small business are the most important aspects of our economy.

         
    How to hold effective staff meetings

     

    Many people believe that they conduct effective meetings, when all they really do is host a party filled with official sounding chit chat. Or worse, they deliver a monologue that bores everyone. In either case, their meetings produce little. Here's how to hold a short, effective staff meeting. 1) In general. Keep them short. Most staff meetings should last less than an hour. You want your staff to spend their time working on things that earn money for your business, not sitting in meetings. Keep them positive. Negative meetings contain insults, ridicule, and attacks. These activities create caution and resentment, which always costs your company money. Keep them interactive. Your staff consists of intelligent people. Put them to work in your meetings to advance the effectiveness of your organization. 2) Share news. Give the members of your group one minute to report on progress made in their area of responsibility. You'll find that this results in bullet point reports of essential information. It also prevents people from philosophizing, explaining, justifying, criticizing, and engaging in other unproductive activities. Plan a time budget: 8 to 10 minutes. 3) Teach something. Invite a guest expert to give a 10 minute presentation on some skill or technology that benefits your group. Tell the expert that you want a logical explanation of practical ideas. You can also ask members of your group to take turns delivering brief tutorials on topics that benefit the others. Plan a time budget: 10 to 15 minutes. 4) Practice skills. Create team learning activities that sharpen or teach skills needed in your business. For example, you could role play job skills (especially useful for sales teams), solve puzzles (useful for high tech groups), or take quizzes (useful for everyone). Ask group members to take turns bringing an activity that reviews or teaches a valuable skill. Follow this activity with a brief recap of key ideas. Then ask the group members to give a fifteen second report on how these ideas can be applied to improve their work. Plan a time budget: 10 to 20 minutes. 5) Solve problems. Give each group member a minute to describe a challenge that hinders work on a current project and then let everyone propose solutions. Suggestions should be brief and free of self aggrandizing explanations or motivational sermons. This process also requires a positive, supportive environment to succeed. If this is used to ridicule, insult, or criticize the individual, then people will be reluctant to reveal issues that need attention. Plan a time budget: 3 to 6 minutes per person. 6) Use a facilitator. A facilitator will help you conduct meetings where the results matter. That way, you can participate, rather than spend your time managing the meeting. A good facilitator will know group decision making processes that move your meeting toward results everyone supports.

         
    How to inform employees when you sell a business

     

    What is the best way to inform employees when you sell your business? Wait until the transaction is a done deal. After many years of representing people who want to sell their businesses, experience has taught me that complete confidentiality about any thoughts of selling are in the best interests of every business owner. Consequently, the best time to make any announcements about selling will be on the afternoon of the day your transaction closes. That announcement should be well rehearsed and should include a personal introduction of the New Owners. The meeting should be planned in advance so that 100% of all employees are in attendance. In that meeting, you can explain your personal reasons for selling and that, after a diligent search, you have found the ideal New Owners. You also can explain that you will continue to be involved in the operation of the business for a period of time in working with the New Owners. Then, the New Owners should explain their background, the reasons for being interested in the business and their desire to do whatever is necessary in order to grow the business and create more opportunities for everyone involved. Last but not least, the New Owners should indicate they plan “no changes” and want to meet individually with each employee to get their ideas and suggestions about how to best grow the business. Typically, any person buying your business will want to keep virtually all of your employees, as they represent a significant portion of the value of your business. Jobs will be lost only in those extremely rare instances when a New Owner intends to relocate a business a great distance, and then normally after a period of both notice and transition. The fact of the matter is that virtually all employees fare better in the future because a high percentage of New Owners come in with additional capital and a desire to grow their new business. This growth typically spells opportunity for employees who want to grow their careers and who welcome working with a New Owner.

         
     
         
    Essay Service
  • Essay Home Family
  • Essay Home Improvement
  • Essay Home Security
  • Essay Horse racing
  • Essay Hosting
  • Essay Humanities
  • Essay Humor
  • Essay Hunting
  • Essay Hybrid car
  • Essay Hypoallergenic dogs
  • Essay Improve personal life
  • Essay Innovation
  • Essay Inspirational
  • Essay Insurance
  • Essay Interior Design
  • Essay International Airports
  • Essay Internet security
  • Essay Internet Marketing
  • Essay Internet Business
  • Essays Internet Marketing
  • Essay Investing
  • Essay Investment Basics
  • Essay Ipod Video
  • Essay Ireland golf vacation
  • Essay Jewelry
  • Essay Jewelry Wholesale
  • Essay Job Search
  • Essay Junior golf
  • Essay K 12 Education
  • Essay Kitchen
  • Essay Kitchen Remodeling
  • Essays Kitchen Remodeling
  • Essay Koi
  • Essay La Jolla California
  • Essay Landscaping
  • Essay Language
  • Essay Las Vegas
  • Essay Law
  • Essay Leadership
  • Essay Leasing
  • Essay Legal
  • Essay Leukemia
  • Essay Loans
  • Essay Low cholesterol
  • Essay Making Money With Articles
  • Essay Male menopause
  • Essay Management
  • Essay Marketing
  • Essay Marketing PLR
  • Essay Marketing Your Business On The Internet
  • Essay Marriage
  • Essay Martial Arts
  • Essays Martial Arts
  • Essay Writing Martial Arts
  • Essay Medicine
  • Essay Meditation
  • Essay Membership Sites
  • Essay Men s Issues
  • Essay Mesothelioma
  • Essay Mexico Vacations
  • Essay Microbrews
  • Essay Mini Blinds or Wood Shutters
  • Essay MLM
  • Essay Mobile A V
  • Essay Mobility scooters
  • Essay Monograms
  • Essay Mortgage
  • Essay Motivation
  • Essay Motor Homes
  • Essay Motorcycles
  • Essay Motorcycles and Scooters
  • Essay Mountain Biking
  • Essay Movies
  • Essay Movie Reviews
  • Essay Moving
  • Essay Moving overseas
  • Essay Movinghouse
  • Essay Multiple Sclerosis
  • Essay Muscle Building
  • Essay Music
  • Essay Music Reviews
  • Essay Mutual Funds
  • Essay Myspace
  • Essay Networking
  • Essay Networks
  • Essay New Air Travel Rules
  • Essay New Years Eve Party Planning
  • Essay New York
  • Essays New York
  • Essay NewAirTravelRules
  • Essay Newport Beach
  • Essay New Years Eve Party Planning
  • Essay Niche Marketing
  • Essay Nursing Assistant
  • Essay Nutrition
  • Essay Office Chairs
  • Essay Online Dating General
  • Essay Online Dating Man
  • Essay Online Dating Woman
  • Essay Online Shopping
  • Essay Opt In List
  • Essays Opt In List
  • Essay Organizing
  • Essay Outdoors
  • Essay Outsourcing
  • Essay Outsourcing Ebooks and Software Jobs
  • Essay Ovarian Cancer
  • Essay Paint Ball
  • Essay Parenting
  • Essay Parentingskills
  • Essay Paris
  • Essay Personal Loans
  • Essay Personal Finance
  • Essay Pet health care
  • Essay Pets
  • Essay PH Miracle Diet
  • Essay Philosophy
  • Essay Photography
  • Essay Playstation3
  • Essay PLC AffiliateMarketing
  • Essay Podcasting
  • Essay Podcasts
  • Essay Poetry
  • Essay Politics
  • Essay Politics Commentary
  • Essay Politics Current Events
  • Essay Politics History
  • Essay Pool Accessories
  • Essay Porsche
  • Essay Power Tools
  • Essay PPC
  • Essay PPC Advertising
  • Essay Pre Paid Legal
  • Essay Pregnancy
  • Essay Private Jet Charters
  • Essay Private Label Resell Rights
  • Essay Private Yacht Charters
  • Essay Private investigation
  • Essays Private Label Resell Rights
  • Essay Product Reviews
  • Essay Prostate Cancer
  • Essay Psychology
  • Essay Public Relations
  • Essay Public Speaking
  • Essay Rawfood
  • Essay RC Hobbies
  • Essay Rc car
  • Essay Re Financing
  • Essay Real Estate
  • Essay Real Estatearticles
  • Essay Real Estate
  • Essay Recipes
  • Essay Recreation Sports
  • Essay Reference
  • Essay Reference Education
  • Essay Relationships
  • Essay Religion
  • Essay Remote control helicopters
  • Essay Renting A House Or Apartment
  • Essay Retirement Planning
  • Essay RSS
  • Essay Running
  • Essay RVs
  • Essay Sales
  • Essay San Diego
  • Essay San Fransisco
  • Essay Satellite Radio
  • Essay Science
  • Essay Scotch
  • Essay Seattle
  • Essay Security
  • Essay Self Improvement Articles
  • Essay Self Help
  • Essay Self Improvement
  • Essays Self Improvement
  • Essay Sell Your House
  • Essay SEO
  • Essay Sexuality
  • Essay Shoes
  • Essay Show Business
  • Essay Site Promotion
  • Essay Ski vacations
  • Essay Skiing Locations
  • Essay Skincare
  • Essay Skin Cancer
  • Essay Sk Vacations
  • Essay Sleepingbaby
  • Essay Small Business
  • Essay Snoring
  • Essay Snoring remedy
  • Essay Snowboarding
  • Essay Snowmobiling
  • Essay Social Networking
  • Essay Society
  • Essay Sociology
  • Essay Software
  • Essay Spam
  • Essay Spirituality
  • Essay Sports
  • Essay Sports Car
  • Essay Sports coaching articles
  • Essay St. Thomas Vacations
  • Essay Stock Market
  • Essay Stress Management
  • Essays St Thomas Vacations
  • Essay Success
  • Essay Summer Vacations
  • Essay Supercross Racing
  • Essay Supplements
  • Essay Surround Sound
  • Essay Swimming Pools
  • Essay Tattoos
  • Essay Tax attorney
  • Essay Taxes
  • Essay Tech gadgets
  • Essay Teeth whitening
  • Essay Tennis
  • Essay Terrier dogs
  • Essay Thanksgiving Party Articles
  • Essay Theater Arts
  • Essay Time Share Investments
  • Essay Time Management
  • Essay Toothache and Tooth Care
  • Essay Top Golfing Accessories
  • Essay Tracking Software
  • Essay Trafficand SEO
  • Essay Traffic Generation
  • Essay Travel Tips To European Countries
  • Essay Travel Leisure
  • Essay Travel Tips
  • Essay Trucks SUVS
  • Essay Universal Studio Tours
  • Essay Vacations
  • Essay Vacuum Cleaners
  • Essay Valentines Day
  • Essay Vehicles
  • Essay Video Sites
  • Essay Video streaming
  • Essay VideoSites
  • Essay Vitamins
  • Essay Vitamins and Supplements
  • Essay WAHM
  • Essay Wart Removal
  • Essay Wealth Building
  • Essay Weather
  • Essay Web Design
  • Essay Web Traffic
  • Essay Web Design
  • Essay Web Development
  • Essay Web Hosting
  • Essay Wedding Favors
  • Essay Wedding Games Activities
  • Essay Weddings
  • Essay Weight Loss
  • Essays Weight Loss
  • Essay Wine
  • Essay Wine And Spirits
  • Essay Women s Issues
  • Essay Writing
  • Essay Writing Speaking
  • Essay YEAR OF CONTENT
  • Essay Yoga
  • Essay YouTube
  •  
    Free Essay
    shopping | gift ideas | Petrela castle | contact form | Essay about cultism in the society | the sony family | groom jewelry | groom | laptops | free essay archive | live video streaming | different between Adwareand spyware | garment accessories | gament accessories | accessories | Arts | domoniterisation paragraph | MONICA ASHLEY | apina hrbek | easy essay on the topic of Demonitisation | anything | essay on importance of demonitisation | write a paragraph on demonitisation | paragrapha on demonitisation | Demonitisation eassy word easy | a short paragraph on demonitisation | paragraph of demonitisation | argumentative essay on demonitisation | short paragraph on demonitisation | demonitisation eassy
     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     
     
     
      Free Essay Archive BloguinHos