by Quint Studer, author of “Building A Vibrant Community: How Citizen-Powered Change Is Reshaping America“
America’s small towns are doing really big things. They’re bypassing traditional methods and finding innovative ways to revitalize. And by and large, they’re doing so under the radar of the national media. (James Fallows and Deborah Fallows chronicle many examples of this national trend in their bestseller “Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey into the Heart of America“.)
One of the most crucial hidden truths about the community comeback is who’s driving it: civic-minded entrepreneurs and private citizens of every stripe.
We the people have decided revitalization is our job. We’re taking matters into our own hands. We’re asking, How can we make our community the best it can be? How can we reinvent ourselves, attract the right kinds of business, and transform into a great place to work, live, and play?”
This mindset has kicked in everywhere: big cities, small towns, communities of every shape and size. No wonder. The chaos and uncertainty of the past few decades have made us crave personal connections with our friends and family. We want our children and grandchildren nearby (with good jobs to keep them there). And we want lively downtowns with great restaurants, funky stores, cool living spaces, and plenty of fun things to do.
Even deeply struggling communities can turn themselves around. It won’t happen overnight. But when leaders take a strategic, intentional approach — and when they use tactics that are proven to work and when they stick with it over the long haul — it will happen.
Pensacola is a case in point. More than a decade ago, when its revitalization process began, it was feeling the aftermath of several decades of economic decline. There was a huge talent drain, and young people left for better opportunities. Downtown was dotted with many vacant buildings.
Today, much has changed. Downtown is thriving. New businesses are popping up everywhere. More downtown construction is taking place than at any time in modern history. There’s a new baseball stadium on the waterfront, and since 2012, the Double-A team the Blue Wahoos have drawn more than 300,000 fans per year to Pensacola. The city is winning awards and showing up in national magazines.
Best of all, property values are soaring: In the past five years, the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) went from an assessed property value of $675 million to $850 million, which equates to 25.9 percent growth. Finally, there are projects worth $100 million being built right now that don’t even count toward this total.
Pensacola is hardly alone. Similar stories are being played out everywhere. Studer identifies a few strategies community leaders are embracing as they work to create vibrancy:
1. They’re tying their plans to economic growth.
There’s just no other path for long-term job creation and a strong, sustainable tax base. It’s important for a community to know where its revenue comes from and, more importantly, know what isn’t generating revenue. For example, don’t build a beautiful bike path unless you are confident that it’s part of a plan that will ultimately spark economic growth.
2. They’re changing the conversation on who drives revitalization.
It’s important to get citizens engaged in change. They (not government) have to lead the way. Leaders are getting people talking about and looking at the community in a new way. How can we develop and sustain communities that serve all of us and satisfy our human desire to be connected, all without putting unfair liabilities on future generations?
3. They’re getting smart about the psychology of change.
It’s only human to resist change, even when we know we need it. Someone is going to object to even the best-laid, most well-thought-out plans. That’s why leaders go into change initiatives expecting barriers and crafting plans to deal with them. The whole community will never get behind anything, so don’t waste energy on trying to convince the unconvinceable.
4. They’re connecting change initiatives to what citizens care about most.
For example, it’s important not just to throw data at people, but rather to find a “burning platform” that speaks to their emotions.
People make decisions with their hearts, not minds. You have to connect to something they care about. In Pensacola our burning platform was: What can we do to keep our children and grandchildren from leaving town? Once we framed the issues that way, we were able to get momentum behind the change.
5. They’re using community dashboards to keep critical metrics front and center.
Just like a company, a community needs objective metrics to know how healthy they are, to identify areas that need improvement, and to gauge progress over time. They need to see all of them together and updated regularly. Think of how the dashboard of a car shows gas, oil, engine performance, temperature, and so forth. It’s a way to constantly be asking, How is our community doing on areas that are important to us? Wages? Crime? Education? High school dropout rate?
6. They’re rebuilding their downtowns.
To attract businesses and talent to a community, it must have a walkable, livable, vibrant downtown with lots of great restaurants, shops, fun activities, and trendy residential areas. Young people, in particular, want to live, work, and play in the same area. When you start by revitalizing your downtown, it gets people activated and sparks growth in the rest of the community.
7. They’re making education a priority.
A strong education system creates a strong talent base and appeals to investors. That’s why leaders are doing everything they can to improve theirs.
In 2014 Pensacola had a 66 percent graduation rate and also a 66 percent kindergarten readiness rate. We connected the dots and realized if we focused on early brain development, we could impact graduation rates long-term. So we started a pilot program with local hospitals to work with new mothers. Now we are on track to become America’s first Early Learning City.TM”
8. They’re keeping inclusion top of mind.
This improves buy-in and gets everyone engaged, which is necessary to create vibrancy. Smart leaders make sure people of all races, genders, sexual orientations, ages, and economic levels are part of the decision-making process and that minorities get a piece of the economic action. Pensacola used a Covenant for the Community to guarantee that contractors would use local minorities in the revitalization of downtown.
Get creative in your efforts to incubate minority-owned small businesses. For instance, you can provide affordable office space, create leases that move up and down based on revenue, and offer business coaching.
9. They’re getting aggressive about attracting investors.
Local, organic investment is great. Leaders do everything they can to find, engage, and attract investors who already live in or have ties to the community. But they also know they need to attract external investors. This is both a science and an art. The “science” part is the dashboard, because it gives investors the metrics they need to know. The “art” part is the compelling story you build around that data: Does your community have a high graduation rate? Are there a lot of Millennials? Is the cost of living affordable? Focus on these selling points.
10. They’re managing incentives more thoughtfully.
Incentives to attract big businesses tend to be overused. Sometimes they’re a good idea. Sometimes they’re not. It’s crucial for leaders to carefully evaluate these deals before deciding, handle them with transparency and fairness, and insist on clearly defined success metrics. And remember: The best strategy is to create such a dynamic, business-friendly community that incentives won’t be necessary. Businesses will want to come anyway.
11. They’re partnering with government the right way.
More and more, leaders are realizing they shouldn’t depend on local government to drive growth. They likely don’t have the budget, nor are elected officials likely to be around to see long-term development projects through. Private investment must lead the way. Government is a wonderful partner and wants the same outcomes citizens do. Elected officials can focus on keeping the community clean and safe, being consistent and fair with guidelines and zoning rules, and enforcing codes.
12. They’re going to extraordinary lengths to engage citizens.
The more successful leaders are at doing this, the more engaged the community becomes, and the more likely it is to meet its goals. For leaders, seek citizen feedback on everything. Communicate relentlessly. Connect back to the why behind what you’re doing and how it affects them. Once citizens are galvanized, they will turn out, take action, make their voices heard, and applaud leaders for making the community better.
13. They’re galvanizing their small business communities in ways that go beyond “business-friendliness.”
Community leaders are starting to realize it’s not just about starting businesses, but about keeping them growing. Entrepreneurs rarely start out with a strong grasp of basic business skills. This is why Pensacola holds monthly training and development workshops, small business “roundtables,” and even an annual business conference (EntreCon).
Once you galvanize the army of citizens who are business owners, they’ll be your catalysts for change and your sustainers. They’ll keep your growth on track.
14. They’re leveraging small successes to keep the momentum going.
Great leaders never declare victory. The work of creating a vibrant community is never done. Use each success to grow more enthusiasm and grow the project base. Once you start having success, everyone starts feeling good about the community, and it becomes easy to keep the less successful projects from bringing down momentum. Community pride has a huge multiplier effect.
Creating a vibrant community is a journey. It’s not easy. But once you can get some wins under your belt, and get citizens behind you, you’ll start to see what is possible. That’s when the magic happens. When individuals come together with a common goal, it creates a synergy that’s unstoppable. This is how we’ll change America for the better — one community at a time.
Quint Studer is author of “Building A Vibrant Community: How Citizen-Powered Change Is Reshaping America” and founder of Pensacola’s Studer Community Institute, a nonprofit organization focused on improving the community’s quality of life and moving Escambia and Santa Rosa counties forward. He is a businessman, a visionary, an entrepreneur, and a mentor to many. He currently serves as the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of West Florida.
by Manish Dudharejia, President and Founder of E2M Solutions Inc
Entrepreneurial burnout is becoming a sadly common epidemic among business owners. After all, the pressure of launching, running, and maintaining a new business often requires far more time and commitment than a traditional 40-hour/week job.
Unfortunately, the intense pressure to succeed, paired with the numerous responsibilities startup owners have to take on, can lead to major burnout – and even physical ailments. Nearly half of entrepreneurs suffer from some sort of mental health condition, such as depression or anxiety. Many startups end up closing their doors shortly after opening – simply because owners are not able to handle everything that it takes to start a successful business.
The best way to avoid this problem is to design a sustainable, healthy business plan from the start. Now, while this certainly sounds obvious, it’s not quite as simple as apples to oranges. Here are four practical ways that entrepreneurs can do it.
Outsource Without Sacrificing Quality.
Many entrepreneurs fear that outsourcing even the smallest of tasks will diminish their control over the business. In fact, the majority of business owners report that they would like to delegate tasks, but they don’t believe that other people would get the job done right. They are afraid that mistakes will be made or the quality of the work will change.
Delegating tasks to freelancers isn’t a sign of weakness or loss of control; it is a necessary solution to an overwhelming work schedule and great for improving business efficiency, especially in the startup stage when the budget is paper thin.
Thankfully, sites like Guru and Upwork make the task of finding freelancers for outsource-able tasks easier than ever. These jobs can include payroll duties, website maintenance, and administrative tasks. Guru freelancers only get paid once the job is complete, so you can make sure that the task is done correctly. Both sites show success rates and quality ratings so you can be confident in the person you choose to work with.
Automate as Much as You Can.
AI technology is becoming more and more common these days for a myriad of reasons. In fact, automation is the most common AI feature that businesses are using today, and it has led to productivity increases in nearly every industry. AI automation can greatly lessen the load of an entrepreneur’s to-do list while still ensuring that quality is not lost.
AI-enabled tools can tackle monotonous, time-consuming tasks almost instantly. For instance, one-third of entrepreneurs report that checking and responding to emails is their biggest time consumer. AI-powered virtual assistants, such as Amy or Andrew, can be used to send automatic responses and even schedule important meetings by coordinating calendars and finding times that work for everyone.
Set a Schedule – And Actually Stick to It.
Though you may be the business owner, it is important for entrepreneurs to think of themselves as an employee. Part of setting a healthy work-life balance is cultivating the ability to clock in, clock out, and go home. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs never truly shut off their work mindset and end up doing just as much work at home as they do at the office. As a result, two-thirds of entrepreneurs work fifty hours a week, a habit that could lead to major health problems and burnout down the road.
Before you get sucked into this mindset, it is important that you set boundaries to help create separation between work and life. Make rules for yourself, such as no checking emails after a certain time or setting a day aside every week to unplug and spend time with loved ones. Most importantly, stick to those rules and don’t cheat!
Forge Communities Wisely.
Being a solo entrepreneur or founding a startup with a small group can be lonely and isolating at times. Many entrepreneurs fall into the mindset that every new connection has the potential to be a client, customer, or business partner – leaving little room to make meaningful relationships with people. Be sure that you are networking to make friends as well, especially with other entrepreneurs who have similar goals as you. There are lots of things you can learn from others, especially people who have been in your shoes.
Check out networking events in your area to get connected with groups or clubs. Plug into your community by hosting pop-up shops or booths at events as a low-cost way to grow your network, promote your brand, and most importantly, build relationships in-person.
Setting up sustainable business practices at the very beginning is an important step to being able to maintain a healthy balance between work and your personal life. Of course, there will be moments of failure (which may not be the worst thing that could happen), but by putting a plan in place to protect yourself from burning out, you can start heading in the right direction on the path to success.
Manish Dudharejia is the President and Founder of E2M Solutions Inc, a San Diego Based Digital Agency that specializes in Website Design & Development and eCommerce SEO. With over 10 years of experience in the Technology and Digital Marketing industry, Manish is passionate about helping online businesses to take their branding to the next level.
by Nick Murphy, career expert and founder of The Job Lab Podcast
As a small business owner, you’re living proof that the American Dream is still alive and well. You’ve taken the risks, made few enough mistakes to successfully grow your business and now you find yourself fully engaged in a war for the kind of talent that will take your business to the next level.
Small companies face unique challenges that larger organizations simply don’t have. You probably don’t have a large HR team (or even a single HR person), your recruiting “budget” likely comes straight out of your operating revenue and your recruiting process is, let’s say, a work in progress.
While it may seem like an impossible task to lure the kind of talent you’ll need to attract to meet your growth goals, there are ways that you can successfully recruit A-players to your growing company.
The first thing that any hiring manger or business owner needs to understand about attracting talent is what today’s job seekers care about. According to a recent PwC survey, candidates’ career decisions revolve primarily around three things: opportunity for career growth, earning a competitive wage, and the availability of flexible or alternative work arrangements.
Let’s identify the advantages that small companies have in these areas and learn how you can leverage this information to improve your employment brand and make your company’s offer the one your target talent accepts!
Opportunities for Career Growth.
With the job market nearing full employment, today’s job seekers have options. So perhaps it’s no surprise that the thing many potential candidates want to know most is how your opportunity can move their career goals forward. Whether they’re looking to move from a sales rep into management, add new areas of responsibility to their role, or add new skills to their resume, everyone wants to move forward.
Inside large organizations, bureaucracy, seniority and office politics can make this advancement challenging if not impossible. As a small business, you’re almost certainly more nimble than most big companies. If you can learn to focus on your unique advantages, you’ll be able to craft a story and employment brand that highlights the opportunities your roles offer. Effectively communicating the opportunity for upward mobility to potential candidates will help them understand that by joining your company they will more quickly and efficiently expand their skillsets and responsibilities to move their careers forward.
Example: Through this position at ACME Inc., you’ll be exposed to multiple aspects of our business where you’ll actively engage with senior leadership and gain insights into the operations of multiple business units. As a small firm, we empower our employees to learn as much as they can about the areas of our business that interest them so that they’ll be well-positioned to advance their careers and make an impact here very early on.
Unsurprisingly, all candidates want to be paid what they’re worth. This isn’t greed, it’s common sense. But every dollar counts in a small business, and paying the same or more than your talent competitors isn’t always possible. However, the amount you pay your people should be driven by the market. And today’s market is a seeker’s market, meaning that submitting low-ball offers to great people is a big mistake.
While it can be a painful realization that you may need to dish out more money that you originally planned, the cost of training and developing talent that leaves to earn more elsewhere is far more expensive.
As a small company your time is as precious as your money. If the owner or another senior member of your team is involved in training and mentoring a new hire that leaves, not only did you lose that employee, but you spent a leader’s time, energy and contribution on a person than can no longer impact the business.
If you need to access current compensation information, I encourage you to do a search for the same job online or visit a site like PayScale.com to understand the current market rate for your jobs.
Availability of Alterative Work Arrangements.
In today’s connected world, employers are running out of excuses to chain their employees to a desk for 40 hours per week. In most companies, at least some of the jobs could easily accommodate a flex arrangement of some kind.
Alternative work arrangements can take many forms. Some of the most common and attractive flexible work arrangements include ½ day Fridays, working “Four 10’s” (ten hours per day, four days per week) and remote, or work from home, opportunities.
The specific form your flex arrangement takes isn’t important. What is important is that you understand how meaningful a flex work schedule it is to potential employees and include it as a part of your candidate messaging if you decide to offer one.
Putting it All Together.
There’s no doubt that small businesses have some distinct challenges attracting and retaining top talent. But with a deep understanding of what job seekers value most and an investment of time identifying how to use your size to your advantage, the savvy small business owner can create a highly attractive message that competes with larger brands, engages their ideal hires and grows their business.
Nick Murphy is the host of The Job Lab Podcast, an NFL veteran, experienced HR Tech entrepreneur, speaker and frequent contributor on topics related to jobs and careers. His corporate experience includes award-winning tenures at three of the world’s largest job sites: CareerBuilder, Monster, and Indeed.com and starting his own thought leadership and career consulting services business, Job Spot in 2014 and Mid-America Careers in 2017.
If you are tired of having the same old vacation – going to the beach, having all-you-can-eat menus and lying around in the sand – maybe it’s time to spice things up a little.
This summer, try something different – Norway. This can’t be the first time you will hear this, but Norway is one of the most breathtaking countries in the world. Experiencing this country’s extraordinary features will most certainly bring your adventurous soul to the new level of nomad-like traveler. Give yourself a chance to be mesmerized by Norway’s magical appearance and mysterious animism that its nature glows with and captivates the senses of people all over the globe. Thus, you really need to experience it.
Here are 4 tips for traveling to Norway this summer.
1. What not to miss while traveling to Norway.
First of all, if you want to experience one of the most memorable views during your trip, make sure to drive around fjords. Have you seen those magical pictures of the glaciers’ reflections in the sea? Of course you have. Now, you can witness this scenery by yourself. Undoubtedly, these moments will remain as precious memories of a great adventure.
Secondly, Norwegian cuisine is something that you must treat your taste buds with! In its traditional form, the Norwegian cuisine has its foundation in raw materials as there is so much food available in the mountains, wilderness, and coast. On the other hand, for those who like to keep it modern and simple, there’s something for you too. There are a lot of restaurants in Norway that keep up with the westernized menus. So, if you like to eat pizza, pasta, and tacos – you won’t stay hungry!
2. Why choose summertime for your trip.
If you are wondering what the cheapest time for you to visit Norway is, there’s a catch, as there is no such thing. Unlike other touristic places in the world, Norway has no particular off-season period when you can save some money. So, the wise choice is to opt for summer days. If you come during summer, you will get the chance to enjoy the endless hours of daylight, hence more time for exploring Norway. Secondly, the weather in summer is far milder than in winter, so this is another benefit to it!
3. Must-see activities.
In addition to the mesmerizing views for you to enjoy, brace yourself for a variety of festivals that you can see in summertime in Norway. Here are some of them:
3.1 Whale Watching in Vesterålen.
One of the main festivals is held yearly in Vesterålen, where you can enjoy whale watching. That will, for sure, be an amazing sight to witness in person. Additionally, it will enrich your gallery with one more unforgettable moment collection.
3.2 Viking Festival.
When you think of Norway, besides fjords and great natural sights, you must think of Vikings. If so, this festival might be just for you. In early or mid-June, Karmøy island is the place to be if you want to witness Viking feasts, processions and saga evenings.
If you are a fan of jazz, you should definitely visit Norway in mid-July for Molde’s jazz festival. This festival is known for its numerous turnout and high-quality music. Hands down, this is one of Norway’s greatest festivals.
3.4 Norwegian Film.
For those who claim to be filmophiles at heart, there’s one more festival – the Norwegian International Film Festival. It is held in Haugesund in mid-August. Also, it presents new works, and it concurs with the national film awards.
4. Do you have wallet size concerns?
Knowing that Norway is one of the priciest places in the world, you might want to plan your budget ahead. Fortunately, there is a great way to get this concern off your mind. If you are a little short on cash, there’s no need to give up on your dream vacation. There are lots of ways to skip these problems, and the best one might be getting a consumption loan. As a consumer, you can apply for a forbrukslån (eng. loan) in order to get cash quickly.
The benefits of getting a consumer loan are numerous. The application costs you nothing. You will quickly receive a number of offers, from which you can choose the one that suits your finances. Once you find your fit, you can pack your suitcase and pursue the vacation of your dreams!
In conclusion, now you must be aware of a new vacation option that you must consider. Go ahead and treat yourself with a holiday you deserve. You’ve worked hard for it, and now that the financial obstacles aren’t there anymore, there’s nothing stopping you.
by John Tarr, co-founder and CEO of Off-Limits Events Ltd.
Effective communication at your workplace is your key to building healthy relationships and getting tasks done.
According to the Watson-Wyatt research, companies who cannot communicate efficiently report a 50% lesser turnover than the industry average. So, if you are one of those managers who is looking to enhance the communication with your team, then you are at the right place.
Read on as this article provides you valuable insights into things that you must keep in mind if you want to establish efficient and proper communication.
1. Establish a Foundation First.
If you want an employee to communicate freely with you, then you must earn their trust beforehand. Establish a rapport with your employee and then initiate the lines of communication. Simply by going for a lunch with your team can be really helpful in such situations.
2. Set up a Weekly or Monthly One-on-One.
One of the best ways to gain your employees’ trust and build a better relationship with them is to have an open discussion on regular intervals. Weekly one on one meetings will do wonders for your team, when communication is the concern. It is also an excellent way to share any issues or concerns with each other, without any formal pressure.
3. Listen, Like Really, Just Listen First.
You have to understand that communication is a two-way process and not just a way to get your message across. If you are not actively listening, then there is no point of communication, because it won’t work! Before responding, always remember to listen with your full attention.
4. Avoid Making Assumptions Quickly.
One of the most significant blocks in the way of communication is that people miss signals and quickly form assumptions. You have to listen properly and only after getting to know about all aspects, should you make any viewpoint or comment about any situation. Quick assumptions can easily lead to misinterpretations and misunderstandings.
5. Find Out the Other Person’s Preferred Style of Communication.
You might have noticed that some team members promptly reply to your emails while others do not find it very reassuring. Being a manager, you must seek out ways that are preferred by particular employees, when it comes to communication. If you want to enhance the exchange of information, then communicating with the other person’s preferred style (be it formal, informal, or personal) will yield the best results.
6. Use Various Tools to Enhance your Communication.
Well this is important. As technology has advanced, we have access to a variety of tools that can help us communicate effectively. You can have a social media group where you can initiate discussions on various relative topics. You can even conduct corporate events to strengthen the interpersonal relations within your teams outside the formal set up.
7. Offer Feedback & Compliments in a Thoughtful Way.
We have all been through a lousy feedback process. Moreover, most of us realise that it is something that does not yield the best results. In some cases, it might even work counterproductively. So the tip here is to focus on your behaviour while you are offering feedback. The same rule applies when you are providing a compliment. Make sure to not to make it sound as if the compliment is forced. Your appreciation has to be thoughtful and genuine, and you must also try to avoid any exaggeration.
So you must keep these things in mind if you want your team to excel at communication. I can vouch for the fact that implementing these will surely help you achieve better results and improve your overall productivity.
John Tarr is the co-founder and CEO of Off-Limits Events Ltd. Starting from a small jet ski rental in Sheffield back in 1993, John has transformed his business into a dynamic multi-event and activity company. Apart from creating bespoke events for corporates, John also helps stag and hen groups organise parties through Stagweekends.co.uk and Henweekends.co.uk.
Your entire financial strength may be affected all of a sudden by an unforeseen act or event. You may lose control over your financial situation due to an accident or natural disturbance. Likewise, any event of celebration might leave a short-term impact too. Under these emergency circumstances, you might find it tough to maintain your cash fund. Experts tend to advise you on creating your own emergency reserve for about 6 months in advance.
You may not have someone to provide you with cash when you’re experiencing a financial crunch. You might achieve funds from some reliable sources depending on your actual requirement. The availability of such funds can be ascertained by taking into account the urgency of your need, the loan period, and the cost to achieve them. You might experience a number of hassles while seeking a traditional loan from a lending company, so you may even consider applying for some online loans. This article will provide you some insight into simple borrowing.
Here are a few simple loan options that you have in hand:
Loan against salary.
Check out your option to gain some financial assistance with your employer. A portion of your salary may come in handy especially when you’re under a financial crunch. Your employer might even provide for an amount that’s equivalent to what you’d earn for 6 months. Such a loan may be adjusted to your salary for a period of 1 year. You may or may not have to pay an interest amount in addition to a portion of the principal amount every month. The amount of money you take a loan depends on your requirement.
Extended home loans.
You may have applied for a home loan in the recent past. You may choose to get your loan extended. You may extend it by up to 50, 00,000 INR and then get it repaid through the remaining years of your loan tenure. This is allowed only after you’ve met a certain portion of the principal amount for over a period of time. You can’t really get the loan extended to an amount that edges past 75% of your home value in combination with the loan value.
You must be using your credit cards to make online purchases. But you may even use them for withdrawing cash. However, the ATM doesn’t allow you to enjoy cash withdrawal over 80% of your credit limit. Also, you may experience some limitations pertaining to regular withdrawals. You may get in touch with a few lending organizations that allow you to make over-limit withdrawals. But for this, you’ll need to bear some overdraft charge apart from your regular cash withdrawal interest. An interest of up to 3.5% has to be paid per month for availing the ATM cash withdrawal facility.
You must achieve a clear picture of your overall financial situation before applying for an online loan. Prior to applying for a loan, you must think of a feasible repayment strategy. That’s why it’s truly important for you to fulfill all dues on time or else you might land up in some debt trap.
Bad driving is not all that unusual. It isn’t always usually easy to abide by using traffic legal guidelines 100 percentage of the time, and the police are still on the lookout. Car coverage becomes a bit trickier with a shocking report, and by using trickier, I suggest greater expensive. It can also be tough to locate a coverage service willing to ensure you relying on how horrific you’re driving records.
Begin By Shopping for Car Insurance.
Most of the time, if you lately acquired a prime visitors violation or your 0.33 minor violation, it’s time to begin buying. Your old carrier might be both going to jack up your fees sky high or probably non-renew your coverage correctly terminating your dating.
Start with the excessive risk organizations who deal with non trendy car regulations. They will have some options for you when it comes to selecting the proper service. Hopefully, you will be handled with admire no matter which employer you visit, however occasionally going to an agent that offers with high threat drivers on a daily basis might be your friendly wager for excellent service. An excessive danger agent goes to be very familiar with SR 22 filings, if you need one, and acquiring your new policy should be smooth.
They do now not run the real using file until you compromise to buy the policy. This is turning into standard manner due to the fact more and more often the marketers are paying the cost of jogging a riding file if a system isn’t always purchased. Therefore, if you want a correct quote, you need to offer accurate information.
Think About Reducing Coverage.
Comprehensive and collision costs leap when a driving force has a terrible driving document. Removing complete and collision can lessen your ordinary expenses appreciably. Is your vehicle too first-rate to drive without full coverage? Unfortunately, it is probably time to promote your fancy automobile and get something greater affordable. Stick with a used mid-sized car with good protection features, ideally one that you feel relaxed riding without complete and crash insurance.
Even large possibility insurance agencies give discounts. Check for a fiscal balance cut-price, domestic proprietor discount, multi-policy bargain, and earlier proof of coverage cut-price merely to call a few. Ask your insurance agent what you are lacking, so that you can affirm whether or not or no longer have you to be receiving the discount.
Select the Best Payment Plan.
Did you realize you could store money primarily based on which charge plan you pick? Make positive you let the coverage agent understand in case you can pay incomplete because generally gets you a discounted rate. Even selecting to pay with computerized withdraws from your bank account or credit score card can prevent notably verses paying thru the mail.
Stay Positive and Insured.
High chance drivers regularly find it hard to live insured.
Whether you think it isn’t always truthful or you believe you studied you’re going to be high risk forever that mentality goes to hold you an excessive chance. Letting your automobile coverage lapse is one of the maximum not unusual methods people live top threat for much extended durations of time. Your points will drop off, but if you do now not maintain your vehicle coverage energetically, you are possibly to keep paying high-risk rates for a complete long term. For more, click here.
Dorrie Eilers, along with her brother Antoine and sister Betty, run the family-business Neptunus, a company that supplies temporary structures for events, pop-up shops, sporting halls and more. Neptunus was founded in 1937 by her grandfather after he discovered an old trunk on the beach with the trident – the sign of Neptune – on it. The chest contained an army tent, which her grandfather put up in the garden from time to time. When neighbors began to ask if they could borrow the tent, he realized he had a business opportunity.
Dorrie’s father took over the business in 1970 and Dorrie and her siblings took over in 2000. “It was not taken for granted that I would come into the family business. And I wasn’t sure if I was interested so I took it slowly.”
We don’t want to be the biggest. We want to be the best in our field.
Today Neptunus has offices in Holland, Belgium, France, Germany, Poland, Austria and the UK with an annual turnover of 65 million euros. Neptunus employees 300 full-time employees, and doubles in size with freelancers during the high season. Recent projects include the structures for Dinosaurs in the Wild immersive experience in London, The 2018 BRIT Awards, the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, the Tomorrowland Festival and MTV Europe Music Awards.
Since Dorrie and her siblings took over the company, it has grown dramatically. They were the world’s first supplier to design and build a temporary structure with two and three stories, and providing cutting-edge solutions for additional space requirements for any business anytime and anywhere. Called “Evolution and Flexolution” temporary buildings, these structures open up new possibilities as flexible and sustainable alternatives to real estate.
We saw a certain market and a certain need – but we didn’t have the right products. So we decided to manufacture and design something for that.
When I asked Dorrie what the best part of running your own company is, she replied, “it brings me a lot of energy, work on a lot of different projects, we travel a lot. Decide our own rules. Can switch very quickly. The company is big and at the same time small. Very experienced people around us giving us the opportunity to expand our business.
And it works because we’re all focused on our own areas: I manage sales and marketing, my sister works on logistics and my brother is responsible for new products.”
What’s the worst? In our field there are a lot of different building regulations in the EU and another for each country. It took us about a year to sort it all out. And sometimes it’s difficult to find good people who share our passion for the business. This year we happen to have 25 people who have their work anniversary being with us for 10-35 years. And others who don’t last 1 year. My advice is “If you don’t like what you’re doing, you better stop!
Why do you think TheNextWomen is important for female entrepreneurs? Knowledge, contacts and networking. When you want to approach a new market or a new country, there are always people who have done the same thing.
Any words of wisdom for new female entrepreneurs? You have to follow your heart and do it. It’s easy to reach your goal if you’re passionate about it.
What’s your biggest challenge for the future: The next generation. Among the 3 of us, we have 7 boys and 1 girl. We hope some of them are willing and able to continue our business.
Summer offers up a wealth of opportunities for workers, business owners and office managers. From adventurous team building exercises to lengthy client lunches, you can take advantage of all of this and much more when the sun is shining outside. Despite this, there are also some risks that you need to think about when summer comes around.
Research has shown that productivity levels can dip by as much as 20% during the summer months, and this can have a serious impact on your business’ revenue and profitability. That’s why we’re offering up some easy tips to boost productivity ahead of summer, so that your business can benefit from a happy and efficient team and strong sales all year round.
Offer flexible working hours.
With summer providing longer, sun-filled days, this can help you to make your typical working schedule more flexible for you and your employees. It can be a challenge trying to work with the sun beaming through your office windows and the temperature slowly rising, however, flexible work days can help to combat this.
Instead of sticking to your normal 9-5 work day, why not offer the opportunity for your staff to work longer days during the week and leave early on Fridays?
This can help to motivate staff to work harder during the week, so that they can enjoy a long, well-deserved weekend.
Top tip: If you’re concerned about productivity slipping after introducing flexible working hours, make sure to track your employees time too. This will help you to ensure the same amount of work is being carried out.
Embrace alternative working arrangements.
For professionals with children, it can be tough trying to find affordable childcare during the summer months, presenting challenges when it comes to working and parenting.
If this is the case for members of your team, it helps to embrace alternative working arrangements during the summer, such as working from home or from a co-working space like Accelerate Places.
Co-working spaces come with all the advantages of a normal office space, however, desks can usually be rented for a daily rate or on a monthly rolling contract. This gives your staff the freedom to decide when, where and how they work so they can work around their family commitments.
Alternatively, working from home provides a viable alternative for those who have family to care for during the summer. This gives your staff the chance to ditch the daily commute, and research has shown that those who work from home take less sick days than those who don’t, which can benefit your business in the long-run too.
Take advantage of the sunshine.
There’s no better way to boost morale and productivity in the office, than by taking advantage of the summer sunshine and taking to the outdoors with your team.
Some of the outdoor activities you could do during summer includes:
As a small business owner, forward planning will be your best friend during the summer months. This can help you to account for staff shortages and make sure workloads are manageable in summer, where there may be less staff around to deal with clients.
Make sure that you and your team have a shared calendar or system whereby you can see who is off and when. This will allow you to make preparations well in advance and avoid any potential productivity slips.
Reward your staff.
Working away in a stuffy office whilst others are enjoying the sunshine outside is no easy task, that’s why it’s important to reward your staff for their efforts during the summer months as well as throughout the rest of the year.
Whether this is treating the team to lunch, or letting them leave an hour or two early, your staff are bound to appreciate the recognition and arrive at work the next ready to work even harder than the day before.
Keep communication up.
Communication is key to making sure that your staff’s needs are being met both inside and outside of the office.
If there are staff shortages, it’s important to make sure to establish a conversation with your colleagues to make sure that workloads are manageable, and stress is kept at a minimum. Make sure to listen to your staff and help them manage the challenges that summer presents, so that productivity and overall happiness in the workplace doesn’t suffer as a consequence.
It may seem like a difficult task to keep your team motivated and keep productivity up during the summer, however, with a bit of forward planning and flexibility you can achieve this with ease. Simply listen to your team and make the most of summer opportunities and you’ll reap the benefits in no time.
Running a home-based business is advantageous in many ways, but it requires knowledge of current trends, technologies, and services that can make the operation a success. In today’s world, there isn’t much that can’t be done with a computer and an internet connection, so managing a business from home is more possible than ever.
You’ll Need an Address.
There are now mailbox services that can help you operate as the sole proprietor of your business without having to give out your personal home address. Many services provide real street addresses, which you can use on your company letterhead, on business cards, and in business listings, while also allowing you to receive mail addressed to that location. Terms vary, so you will have to search for the services that best suit your needs.
Outsourcing Personnel Needs.
Depending on the nature and success of your business, you may need background support staff, such as receptionists. There are now a number of virtual receptionist services available from which you can choose, each one offering different features and benefits. Many, such as Specialty Answering Service, feature bilingual receptionists, so your Spanish-speaking customers will be able to communicate more effectively. Fees for this service vary, based upon the features you choose.
Conference Room Rentals.
When you need to conduct face to face meetings, you may not want to bring customers or colleagues to your home. Many hotels and public venues offer conference room rentals for such occasions. You will have to check specific venues for exact pricing, but this can be an attractive alternative that will allow you to present a more professional environment.
Shipping and Printing Services.
Another downside to operating out of your home may be that you won’t have a warehouse with a logistics department. This is easily remedied by the services provided by UPS and FedEx stores. In addition to shipping products, documents, and letters, they can copy and print any documents you may need. As these services are done on an individual basis, the costs will be lower than if you had to maintain your own printers and shipping services.
Having a user-friendly interactive website will help to boost your sales. A lot of business today is done online so without a quality website you will fall behind very quickly. Many businesses incorporate a blog into their website as well. Using tools to start and keep your blog running are important there are many WordPress options to build your blog like WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Pit WordPress.com vs WordPress.org and see which one is better for your blog.
You don’t even have to operate out of your home all of the time, if you make use of cloud technology. While it mainly consisted of providing document storage in the beginning, the technology has evolved. Today, you can store apps and software, so it can be accessed from any location with any device. This makes it possible to do work from home, save it to the cloud, access it from another location, and add to your work without losing data. In essence, you can take your office with you, wherever you go.
As mobile technology advances, communicating with customers, suppliers, and other business associates becomes easier and more efficient. Already, messaging apps, such as Skype, make it possible to conduct conferences from any location, even while you’re on the go. Add text messaging and video conference applications for full connectivity. Using these technologies can help you ensure you’re never unavailable to important contacts.
Making use of these services and technology can help you start a business with far less funding than you would otherwise require. Through these tools, you can operate on a shoestring budget, while you grow your followers and build your brand. As you do find more success, you may even continue to operate out of your home, finding that technology has made it more efficient to do so.