My children are a big part of my life. I love my two girls, ages 4 and 2. They greet me when I come home each day from work and nothing warms my heart like the hugs and smiles that meet me at the door. They’re all mouth, talking non-stop from the minute I enter the room. But they’re also listening...and thinking. It’s not uncommon for work to be a frequent topic at the dinner table as I discuss clients, products, services we’re offering, or strategies. On more than one occasion my 4-year-old has jumped into the conversation with an innocent, simple question that only a child could ask. And on more than one occasion I’ve been stunned with the ideas that her simple question sparks. In a world of adults, with all its twists and turns, complexities, and diversions the straight-forward, honest thoughts of a child have provided me with a wonderful opportunity to see the heart of a situation. The next time you have a chance, talk with a child, ask them what they think about your business. Their answer might surprise you.
That’s right, your building is on fire. You’ve got to get out. Grab what you can and head for the door. Don’t look back. Don’t think twice, you don’t have the time.
As you stand out front and watch the firetrucks pour in and dump thousands of gallons of water on your business - are you worried? Where is your information? Where are your records? Where is your client’s information? What have you lost?
I hope nothing. I hope you have no worries other than the headaches of insurance claims and the time spent in finding a new building. But if your data is not being backed up, stored off-site, or saved in the “cloud” - you’re in trouble. And that’s not cool. We do not want that to happen.
We have the ability to give you the peace of mind you deserve. We’d love to back up your information for you. If you have concerns about how safe your data is, or if you know you’re living too close to the edge, call us. Let us evaluate what you’re doing and offer suggestions and implement ways you can be safer. That way if someone yells fire, you can pull out the marshmallows.
There are always times when something happens in business that catches you off guard. Maybe you were expecting a particular discount or savings on a product or service and then for some reason you don’t receive it. That can be upsetting, maybe hurtful, definitely frustrating and might even make you angry. It can be tempting to dash off an email blasting them for their incompetence, stupidity, complete lack of loyalty to you, their most valuable customer. But stop. Even if just for a minute. Stop, breathe, and think. Is there a logical explanation. Could there be a misunderstanding, a glitch somewhere in the process that could have caused the problem? Put yourself in the shoes of the business. If you were them, how would you feel if you’d mistakenly denied a discount to a loyal customer.
Quite possibly, the majority of the time, there has been a simple misunderstanding. No business would intentionally do something to hurt a loyal customer. Then, once you’ve taken a minute to stop and think (and breathe). Then write your response, your email, or call them. Explain the situation. State your case and request for an explanation. Any company in the world would value that communication, and bend over backwards to do right by you. You are the type of customer they want to have.
Nobody likes to be threatened, yelled at, or accused. Especially if it’s not justified. Next time you have a problem with a business - give this idea a try. Stop. Breathe. Think. Then communicate.
If you have a business I cannot stress enough the importance of being transparent about who you are and what you do. We deal with hundreds of clients a year and examine probably thousands more each year. Without fail the first place I will go to is the “About Us” page. I can instantly tell what kind of business I’m dealing with from that one page. More and more people are looking at who is behind a company. It can be tempting to put up a generic, stuffy sounding run-of-the-mill page that claims the vastness of your company’s experience, knowledge and your top-of-the-line skills, and never even mention a single person’s name in the company.
People want to work with people, not stuffy businesses that have no personality. I admit it can be scary, even a little intimidating to boldly tell the world that there are only four of you in your business. But your potential clients will value that openness, they’ll come to know the people behind the name, and that is what will make a loyal customer. Tell people who YOU are, tell them what YOU do, be honest and open, and see if it’s not more rewarding.
This is a question that I get asked often. I’m an avid reader and have a reputation for being a bit of a speed reader. I love to read. And I’m a technology nut. I have both the Kindle and the iPad. As a result I get a lot of questions asking which I prefer reading on. Or even if I like reading on an electronic device instead of holding paper in my hands. I’ve got a simple answer for that. If I’m sitting down to read a novel. I grab my Kindle. If I’m reading the headlines, glancing through a magazine. It’s the iPad.
I find the Kindle to be very easy on my eyes for sustained periods of intense reading and lots of page-turning. If I’m looking to be entertained or want the freedom to jump around between checking email, reading a magazine, checking something out on the Internet or browsing pictures or video the iPad is the only way to go (for now...I’m waiting for Android Honecomb).
So my simple answer to the question of which device to choose - it depends on what you plan to do.
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