A number of you woke up this morning with a sense of dread because you have to go to a job you absolutely HATE! I have one simple question to ask you. What are you going to do to change your situation? Stop sitting on the sideline, operating in reactionary mode, and take control of YOUR life!
I know it may seem as if it’s too late, but you can still pursue your dreams. Do you have a business idea? Go ahead and start putting some framework around it so it becomes a reality. Do you desire to become debt free? Implement a plan to reduce your expenses and make more money. Do you desire marriage? Continue preparing yourself to be the best spouse you can be. Success generally comes when preparation meets opportunity.
IT’S YOUR TIME!
Write down your dreams and create a plan to make each of them a reality! Let me know how I can be of assistance to you throughout the process. You CAN do it!
One of the keys to success in business is making sure you work efficiently. Being a solopreneur or small business owner can be stressful. However, don’t add to the level of everyday anxiety by not systemizing your business.
People ask me how I seamlessly operate multiple business entities. Having a degree in Industrial & Systems Engineering has assisted me in this area and I look for opportunities to reduce my personal effort where possible. In every aspect of business you have to ask yourself “Am I working too hard doing something that software/technology can do easier?”
Implementing business systems is key to maximizing your efficiency. Do you have the following elements in your business? If so, what tools are you using?
1. Online Presence - Every business should have a website. Most people won’t reach out to you until they’ve vetted you online or via someone they know and trust. There are several solutions for creating an online presence, some inexpensive, others not so inexpensive. A number of the inexpensive options like Wix and WordPress still offer you a professional appearance without breaking your budget. All of my websites, 15 of them, are built using WordPress. The tool is user-friendly and offer a number of templates you can use to customize your look. Also, your website needs to be responsive (mobile device friendly), otherwise you jeopardize losing potential customers because they can’t easily conduct business with you.
2. Business Phone System – Every business should have a dedicated business phone line. This should be self-explanatory, BUT there are still a number of people doing business via personal home phone lines. There’s nothing worse than calling someone for business only to have their kids answer the phone as if you’re interrupting something. With a number of options out there like Google Voice and Grasshopper (my choice), there’s no excuse for not having a dedicated business phone line. Plus these solutions are either free or very low cost in nature.
3. Business Branded E-mail – Another professional touch to add to your business is utilizing a business branded e-mail address. This might seem like a minor element, but there is a different view from a business perspective when you conduct business online with someone using a business-branded e-mail address versus other free options. Yahoo and Google are great companies, but I prefer to conduct business using my business-branded e-mail account. You can setup your own business e-mail account using companies like GoDaddy. I am also a reseller who offers the ability to register domains, hosting and e-mail, visit http://www.ktponlineservices.com.
4. Customer Relationship Management – Communicating and sharing products/services with your customers is a major key to the success of your business. Unfortunately, a number of people are still leveraging spreadsheets and offline distribution lists. This makes communicating with your clients and customers more complex than it needs to. Take a look at low-cost solutions like Aweber, Mailchimp or Constant Contact. You can also opt for other solutions requiring more of an investment like Infusionsoft (review Infusionsoft here) or Act-on. The main point is being able to easily organize and communicate with your customers leveraging streamlined automation.
5. Social Media Management – You can spend countless hours juggling between Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+ and/or Pinterest. Quite frankly, it can be a downright hassle trying to manage all of those social media channels while still servicing your customers. Fortunately, there are a number of applications which assist with this effort. Take a look at options like Hootsuite, TweetDeck and Sprout Social. Entrepreneur had a great article on their website highlighting 14 Tools Every Entrepreneur Needs for Social Media http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/231851.
If you are an entrepreneur or small business owner and having trouble juggling the multiple aspects of your business, evaluate the various components of your current business to see if there are areas to systemize. I will share five more business areas with you in part 2 of Systemize Your Business.
I know some people get tired of me promoting the importance of credit, credit ratings and smart money. However, living with bad credit costs people thousands of dollars along with potential opportunities. Potential opportunities you ask? YES…potential JOB opportunities. If getting better interest rates isn’t enough to move you to improve your credit, missing out on potential job opportunities should.
Imagine spending time building your resume with solid work experience only to have your dreams dashed because you’re living with bad credit. Don’t believe this can happen to you? See this article posted on CNN Money’s website -> http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/12/pf/bad-credit/. I also have clients who have personally experienced this, which brings an element of reality to the table. More and more employers are reviewing personal credit reports to see how potential employees are managing their personal affairs. Imagine going through the hiring process for your dream job only to be eliminated because your credit scores are lower than another candidates. No bueno (good)!
A large number of people are under the impression that improving credit requires a lot of work and in some instances it might. However, working smarter is most likely the solution to your credit problems.
Here are four quick things to do in order to improve your credit scores:
1. Start paying your bills on time TODAY!
2. Resolve past credit issues by paying-off, settling or validating the accuracy of accounts. Each account is different so you may need to consult a professional for assistance.
3. Pay your account balances down. The rule of thumb is to keep your utilization ratio around 30%. This means if you have a credit card limit of $1,000, you want to keep your balance for that account at or below $300.
4. Don’t close your old accounts. Aged, active accounts actually assist with increasing your credit scores. You lose that history when you close older accounts.
As always, feel free to share your stories with me…I enjoy hearing from you.
1. Do I love myself?
There is a twentieth question that I can’t answer by myself. Can you guess what it is? Stay tuned for the answer…
Updated as of July 2, 2014…She Said Yes!
In my previous post, I shared information regarding the 6C’s of engagement ring shopping. Well in addition to the 6C’s, you must also make a decision on the ring style that encompasses the 6C’s. I’ve had fun researching and shopping for rings; take a look at the various options that are available to choose from.
If given the choice, which ring would you choose? I’ve already made my decision…
Over the weekend I had an opportunity to sit and chat with a number of different people and of course the topic of relationships came up. Not surprising, a number of questions were directed to me because of the transition I’m currently making from being unmarried. I don’t know why, being someone who has shared information about relationships for years, I feel even more certain about the perspectives I’m now able to share.