Archive for the ‘Business Economics’ Category

21 Ways to Inspire Change at Work

April 18, 2009

Keeping people motivated and inspired at work, with the media drowning us in fear, adds one more demand on small business owners.

I saw a great snippet movie this week that is targeted in helping small business owners to keep their team focused on how change is good.

Take a look.  Pass it along.  And, more importantly, use it to help your team keep winning in any economy!

Enjoy Success!

Sandra

Save Money – Cut Business Expenses + Personal

March 29, 2009

30325463Rebate Spending:

Yup!  We see it everyday on credit card ads, TV, print offers – cash back rebate on cars, cash back rebate on new mobile phones, etc, etc.  Does rebate spending work?

Yes it does.  Think about it.  It makes you buy what you want to buy anyway, right?

So, why can’t we get rebates on everything we buy?  Well, now we can.  At least just about everything.

How about getting a rebate from everything you buy online?  Rebates from 1-40%!  Like the idea … read on

Depending upon where you shop, by simply using your own personal shopping portal you can save hundreds if not thousands per year by shopping online.

Save 3% from Best Buy – 6% from Staples – 12% from 1-800-Pet-Meds – Target 3% to 7% – Macy’s 4% – Vista Print 12% – and over 700 more name brand vendors on the Shop to Earn shopping portal.

These are all name brand stores.  Stores you shop at already – perhaps on or off line.  But, if you can save on what you’re already buying anyway – simply by buying online – how sweet is that!

You can still go into these stores – see “it,” touch “it,” try it on (like Victoria Secret).  You can still use all the usual coupons and special discount codes you would have from these vendors anyway.  With Stop to Earn you simply get money back for buying the same things online.

I made a trip to the Parks Mall in Arlington, Texas yesterday.  Almost every store in the mall is on Shop to Earn and available for you to receive cash back from your purchases.   Sears, Macy’s, Victoria Secret, just to name a few.

I am health conscious, or shall I say “degenerative disease conscious.”  So I do my best (and better every day – with all the challenges) to eat as healthy and as pure as possible.  I don’t like the big box, processed, over-crowded, stand-in-a-line grocery store.

So, lots of my groceries are from local “holistic” stores. As part of my new lease on life this year, I’m also going “green” in as many ways as I can.  Groceries and otherwise.  Shop to Earth, which is part of Shop to Earn and is a way to do your part in “going green,” in whatever ways you choose.  Again, there is an array of “green stores” to choose from here.

I’m replacing my less than great eating habits with a variety of things, including organic shakes, bars, veggies, etc. this year.  Here, I’m redirecting much of my spending from the regular grocery store to the “green side” of  Shop to Earth.  All “green” and organic products to choose from – all of which you also receive cash rebates.

Rather than the lines and stuff I’m not crazy about at the local grocer, I go to my website Shop to Earn and and order my coffees, office supplies, breads, camera supplies, and even my smoked salmon!  I’ve added my cleaning supplies (“green”) to my order list.  My clothes, my shoes, my underwear, my gifts, my EVERYTHING – I look at my shopping portal now!

So, check it out.  The best part of this is that Shop to Earn is a great fit in my business plan for passive income strategies – AND, for my clients!  It is a “no-brainer” profit strategy within small businesses for money they are spending ever year anyway.

I have a plan to be completely and totally supported by passive income by January 1, 2011.  I have made money every week with Shop to Earn and my business is growing exponentially.  It’s taking little time away from my mainstay business efforts.  So, whatever your passive or current income plans are, take a few minutes to check it out.  I trust you’ll be glad you did!

Business owners buy stuff.  And, more than the average consumer.  And, even the average consumer … everyone wants to save and have more money.  Shop to Earn is a great addition to anyone’s savings plan – business and personal.

Please leave your comments.  Check it out.  And, let me know what you think!

To Your Profits

and Success!

Sandra

“Going Green” Is Good Business – Part Two

March 26, 2009

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In my last post, I simply introduced “Going Green” In Your Business.  

Now:  TIME TO PLAN.  It takes time to “go green,” so develop a plan for your company. 

In today’s economy, “going green” can be a one step-up marketing advantage for you, which equals more business, as well as helping us all … with what must happen … or, the rest will likely be mute points, anyway! 

First off,  focus on sustainability.  Simple examples include switching to compact fluourescent bulbs and recycling,  as starters.  And, what is important for your sustainability in the future?  This is where your planning comes in.

Thinks about it.  Month to month.  Things like toilet paper, cleaning products, reducing waste, going paperless, reducing energy and water use, improving indoor air quality and more.  How much can you easily do, day to day, to help here?

A great example of this includes joining hundreds of participating employees and families from around the world for “Earth Hour” on Saturday, March 28th, from 8:30 to 9:30 pm.  With this, you will take a stand against global warming  with millions of others around the world.  Participants in this are as far away as Fiji.

This may not be an immediate business builder for you, but it will be part of your overall business plan for “Going Green.”  Your participation will matter in terms of “News” and use with this on your websites, blogs, etc. in weeks to come.  

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Created by World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to make a basic point in a big way, Earth Hour uses the simple action of turning off the lights for an hour to deliver a powerful message about preserving our world’s limited resources.   So far, more than 1,100 cities and towns in 80 countries and 25 time zones worldwide have committed to powering down for this history making event.

 

Simply shut off non-essential lights and mechanical systems in businesses and homes (street lights and other common area and public safety lighting should stay illuminated).

 

It’s a great example of “Going Green” practices in our businesses.  

 

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Years past, I would criticize clients for turning lights off in the offices, just because no client activity was happening there.  Not giving a “good impression.”  Now, it’s a very smart thing to do!

 

Consumers expect to move towards sustainability.  There’s no reason business would not be ahead of consumers in this!  We are all responsible for reducing pollution, waste of energy, resources, etc.  So now, the question is how do we design our businesses, products, packaging, operations, etc. to be more environmentally-friendly.  To do what consumers are also seeing value in doing.

 

From a business marketing standpoint, make sure you communicate your efforts in this … and achievements to all of your clients … and prospects, via your website and offerings.  Give them details on the steps you’ve taken along the way, both tangible (i.e. “Green” product use) and intangible (i.e. reduced energy use).

 

Consumers expect companies to start moving towards sustainable solutions.  Reducing pollution, waste in packaging, and implementing more environmentally friendly choices.  Again, make sure you communicate your efforts in this to your clients.  Give them details on the steps you have … and, are taking.  And, remember, this means reduce, reduce, reduce!  That is the ultimate goal for everyone in terms of “resources.”

 

Part Three on “Going Green in Your Business” will be focused more on Profit Strategies.  That will be up in the next few days!

 

See you then!!!

 

To Your Success,

Sandra

Obama Speech – It Is In Our Mindset, Attitude and Actions that Will Matter Most!

January 23, 2009

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OBAMA – GREAT SPEECH!

And, more important will be what we do with “IT,”

 in terms of INDIVIDUAL and COLLECTIVE actions.   Ours, and “His.” 

There is no one man who can right all of the rest!

So, those in small business Unite!  Get help where you need it … and realize that it is a “NEW” world economy!!! 

And, a “NEW” way of marketing your small business – overall – or, you may perish!!!

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Inaugural Address

By President Barack Hussein Obama

     My fellow citizens:  I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you’ve bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. 

     I thank President Bush for his service to our nation — (applause) — as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

     Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath.  The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace.  Yet, every so often, the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms.  At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we, the people, have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears and true to our founding documents. 

     So it has been; so it must be with this generation of Americans.

     That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood.  Our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred.  Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.  Homes have been lost, jobs shed, businesses shuttered.  Our health care is too costly, our schools fail too many — and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

     These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics.  Less measurable, but no less profound, is a sapping of confidence across our land; a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, that the next generation must lower its sights.

     Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real.  They are serious and they are many.  They will not be met easily or in a short span of time.  But know this America:  They will be met.  (Applause.)

     On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.  On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics.  We remain a young nation.  But in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.  The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea passed on from generation to generation:  the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.  (Applause.)

     In reaffirming the greatness of our nation we understand that greatness is never a given.  It must be earned.  Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less.  It has not been the path for the faint-hearted, for those that prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame.  Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated, but more often men and women obscure in their labor — who have carried us up the long rugged path towards prosperity and freedom. 

     For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.  For us, they toiled in sweatshops, and settled the West, endured the lash of the whip, and plowed the hard earth.  For us, they fought and died in places like Concord and Gettysburg, Normandy and Khe Sahn. 

     Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life.  They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions, greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

     This is the journey we continue today.  We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth.  Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began.  Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week, or last month, or last year.  Our capacity remains undiminished.  But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed.  Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.  (Applause.)

     For everywhere we look, there is work to be done.  The state of our economy calls for action, bold and swift.  And we will act, not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.  We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.  We’ll restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost.  We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.  And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.  All this we can do.  All this we will do.

     Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions, who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans.  Their memories are short, for they have forgotten what this country has already done, what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.  What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. 

     The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.  Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward.  Where the answer is no, programs will end.  And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account, to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day, because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

     Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill.  Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched.  But this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control.  The nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous.  The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity, on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.  (Applause.)

     As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.  Our Founding Fathers — (applause) — our Founding Fathers, faced with perils that we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man — a charter expanded by the blood of generations.  Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience sake.  (Applause.)

     And so, to all the other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born, know that America is a friend of each nation, and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity.  And we are ready to lead once more.  (Applause.)

     Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with the sturdy alliances and enduring convictions.  They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please.  Instead they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

     We are the keepers of this legacy.  Guided by these principles once more we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort, even greater cooperation and understanding between nations.  We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan.  With old friends and former foes, we’ll work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet.

     We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense.  And for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken — you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.  (Applause.)

     For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness.  We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers.  We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

     To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.  To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West, know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.  (Applause.)  

     To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.  (Applause.)

     To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds.  And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders, nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect.  For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

     As we consider the role that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who at this very hour patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains.  They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. 

We honor them not only because they are the guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service — a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. 

     And yet at this moment, a moment that will define a generation, it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.  For as much as government can do, and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies.  It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours.  It is the firefighter’s courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent’s willingness to nurture a child that finally decides our fate.

     Our challenges may be new.  The instruments with which we meet them may be new.  But those values upon which our success depends — honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old.  These things are true.  They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. 

     What is demanded, then, is a return to these truths.  What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition on the part of every American that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world; duties that we do not grudgingly accept, but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character than giving our all to a difficult task.

     This is the price and the promise of citizenship.  This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.  This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed, why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall; and why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served in a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.  (Applause.)

     So let us mark this day with remembrance of who we are and how far we have traveled.  In the year of America’s birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river.  The capital was abandoned.  The enemy was advancing.  The snow was stained with blood.  At the moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words to be read to the people: 

     “Let it be told to the future world…that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive… that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].”

     America:  In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words.  With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come.  Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

     Thank you.  God bless you.  And God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)

Soar With Marketing As Your Focus

November 4, 2008

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A simple definition of marketing is engaging people to “Know, Like and Trust You,” so that you may help solve their problems – or help them have what they want – so they buy from you, and ultimately become your referral champions.

 

I spent five hours on Sunday, focusing on a love of mine, photography.  And, it reminded me of a very important marketing lesson for business, current economic issues and much more. 

 

A new perspective on focus:  Did you know that when you photograph something through a wire cage, the wire disappears when you put your focus on the subject?  Yes, it does.  I was a certain “doubting Thomas” at first.  Still, amazing!  It is true.  Take a look.  This beautiful bald eagle was shot through wire cages at the Fort Worth zoo.  Amazing!!! 

 

And, what you focus upon expands!  Look at the beauty of this ubject.  So, where are you putting your attention in this economy – with the election … and, far beyond?  This may be a time of amazing opportunities for your business, or a disaster waiting to happen.  You will lead its way with the focus you take.

 

Focus is more powerful in this fact and analogy, than I had ever imagined – more powerful than seeming obstructions.  Like wire over a bird in the zoo – it disappears when you put your focus on your outcome!   The wire disappears and only the bird remains – or, your true intentions and subject of focus in growing your business.

 

So, regardless of the economy, other people’s opinions, etc., what if you put your focus full out on your marketing?  Your attitude, focused upon the fact that opportunity abounds?  It is a time for you to stand out in markets where others are wrapped in negative news wires. 

 

I have realized for years that what you put your attention on, your focus, your energy … with emotion … over time … fueling it … creates, manifests, and makes your life what it is.  This is true in business.  It’s true in life, relationships and any life pleasures you care to enjoy.

 

So, do be careful what you focus upon.  Whatever “IT” is … you will certainly have more of.  If you’re going to think anyway, why not focus upon making this your best year ever?  Remember, millionaires are historically made in record numbers … in down economies.  And, you could be one of them!

 

To Your Success,

Sandra

Building a Case for Marketing

October 28, 2008

 

If you’ve cracked a newspaper or turned on the news lately, it’s all doom and gloom about the economy.  The continuing financial crisis has left business owners on edge, causing many to do just the opposite of what they should be doing.  Hopefully, you are not one of those frightened ones … making emotional versus rational, practical decisions to propel your business forward in any economy.

Looming financial questions have negatively impacted economies around the world.  No country or region has been completely isolated from the financial storm.  Here at home, companies large and small are scrapping plans to introduce new products.  Cut backs on marketing are some of the first considered.  This is exactly the wrong thing to do.

Now is the time to be bold and take action to grow your business.  Now is the time, more than ever, to have an actual marketing plan.  And, then work the daylights out of that plan.  Think about it.  When are your prospects more likely to see and respond to your marketing?  In boom times, when they’re being bombarded with advertising and promotions from all of your competitors … or, in lean times when your competitors stop contacting them?

Now is the best time to grow your business.  While competitors are hunkering down, you have the opportunity to excel.  The competition won’t be trying to contact your prospects “as usual.”  They probably won’t even be contacting their own clients as often.  This makes it all that much easier for you to get attention with PR, ads, in-house marketing efforts, internet marketing, etc.

If you paid attention to everything you saw in the news about the economy, or anything else, it could easily drive you to drink.  The media’s driving force is constant negativity.  It’s only the topics that change.  But before you give up on your business future – based on news reports – remember that the majority of people in the U.S. (approximately 96%) still have jobs and are earning a steady income.  Even if things get as bad as some predict, the majority will still have their jobs, similar to the recession of 1982, which most people have already forgotten.

You’ve got a choice and opportunity in this economy, if you reframe your take on possibilities.  You can hunker down with you business, hide out and try to ride out this recession.  If so, there is a high likelihood you’ll be making less next year.

Or, you can take this recession as a challenge to lead your field.  You can use it to transform your marketing and your growth strategies to come out on top of all the rest.  Which is it?  Are you aiming to be a winner?  Or, simply follow the pack?

It may be a perfect time for you to look at outsourcing, versus hiring, to get the extra horsepower you need to power up your marketing efforts.  You may find the help of a professional marketing or business coach to give you fresh input and keep you accountable to the goals you set for yourself.  Success isn’t for the fearful.  It’s for those who believe in themselves and choose to lead the field when others fail.  If you are that leader of the pack, next year could turn into your best ever!

To Your Success,

Sandra Lee