Power Tools for Business
How do we keep track of our business deals?
If you are only working with one or two deals, keeping track of them is a simple matter. However, most of us have far more than two deals on the plate and even more coming down the pipeline. It is sometimes quite difficult to keep track of all the details and remember who said what to whom. You need to keep track of the names of people on each deal or project and what their responsibilities are. There are many techniques that you can use to keep on top of the situation. You can purchase CRM (Customer Relation Management) software to handle the contact details plus a host of other information. Unfortunately it is time consuming and you can often miss out on important proposals or calls that you need to make. Keeping track of details is necessary, and keeping accurate records is also of prime importance.
Using the computer to track information does not have to be onerous or difficult; it simply has to be planned into your day. I use my computer extensively for everything I do, but I do not carry it to meetings with me, I carry a simple paper notebook for each client and keep meticulous notes. I then transfer the important points to the computer system and have it refer to my journal for further details (I number my journals and file them for later use). Appointments, phone numbers, managers' names, titles, project roles are all on the computer system. Making detailed notes with dates are on my power page in my notebook.
We will go into more detail for the power page a little later in the chapter. Right now let's walk through the various components that are necessary for keeping the details straight and continuing to nurture our business relationships.
Bette Daoust, Ph.D. has been networking with others since leaving high school years ago. Realizing that no one really cared about what she did in life unless she had someone to tell and excite. She decided to find the best ways to get people's attention, be creative in how she presented herself and products, getting people to know who she was, and being visible all the time. Her friends and colleagues have often dubbed her the "Networking Queen". Blueprint for Networking Success: 150 ways to promote yourself is the first in this series. Blueprint for Branding Yourself: Another 150 ways to promote yourself is planned for release in 2005. For more information visit http://www.BlueprintBooks.com
11 Things Small Business Owners Can Learn From The Miracle On Ice
1. Know Where You're Going ? Coach Herb Brooks had a strategic plan for assembling the American team. Take time to determine the direction you want to take your small business, then put in place the action steps and players to accomplish your goals.
If You Want Business - Be Consistent
Why does consistency in the message have an effect on how the business relationship is formed?
Tracking Revenue For MORE Profits
The revenue history is a vital piece of your power page and you need to record that information. Keeping track of client revenues should not be done in a paper format, it should be recorded electronically. It is too easy to make mistakes when calculating by hand, the results of the data entry can then be recorded into your power page. You need to date these numbers as they can change quite rapidly and you will want to know if there is a growth pattern. You will also be aware of diminishing returns and flat areas. Familiarize yourself with how they report earnings because each company has their own unique way of presenting the information to the public or its employees. You are probably asking yourself why you would bother tracking financial earnings of a company you are doing business with, or even one that is not yet a client. Believe it or not, financial information gives hints as to the success of the sales force, the marketing efforts, and the leadership of the executives. The financials can paint a picture that says more than what you are being told. If you still do not believe me, read through the next example.
Business Plans - What Consultants Don?t tell You!
Do you have a Business Plan? Congratulations, but you are in a small minority. And if you have a plan, is it integral to your business, and instrumental to its growth? If the answer to this question is yes, then you need to read no further. However, most business owners who actually go to the trouble to write a business plan have left it languishing on their bottom shelf, gathering dust! This is the dirty little secret of business consultants.
Data Loss - Can Your Company Survive? (Most Do Not)
Data. Most people think it is a term relegated to the kingdom of geeks.
Is It Recess Yet?! Confessions of a Self Employed Workaholic
I have a confession to make. My name is Caroline and I'm a workaholic. I try to pretend I don't have a problem. I try to cover it up. But, in the end I'm faced with the cold hard truth that I am a person who works too much. I even tried to take work with me on my honeymoon! (I got busted!)
Finding the Right People for your Business
Where do you find the right people for a business relationship?
An Example of Business Automation - eCards with pizazz
The last time I spoke and went into a bit of detail on business automation. Today I would like to give you some details of how I actually used it personally so you get to see first-hand what I wanted, how I went about doing it and finally executing it.
Is a Small Business Web Site a Wise Investment?
One of the greatest pitfalls in e-commerce is Field of Dreams thinking, the notion that all one has to do is "build it (a web site) and they will come."
Business Owners - Do You Actually Own a Job?
How many hours do you work a week? When was the last time you took an uninterrupted holiday? Do your staff have a better job than you? Now ask yourself, Do I Own a Business or a Job- with Overheads? Are you happy about the answers to these questions? If not, read on.
Accounting Methods ? Cash and Accrual
When starting a business, you have to determine the method you are going to use for accounting and paying taxes. The two choices are the cash method and the accrual method.
Bad Regulators Cost Small Businesses
When a regulator finds a target to go after to collect fees to insure next years budget, often it is a small business. In fact the definition of a small business includes what normal people might even think of as a medium sized business. Often a Federal Regulator might be a 26-year old kid fresh out of college being supervised by an older regulator. The younger regulator often wishes to secure his or her case in the name of Justice and wants to change the world being fresh out of college. But they know they must win the case.
Postcard Marketing Your Small Business
One of the best marketing strategies a business or organization can use is postcards. Even before the arrival of online postcard printing and mailing services, postcards had a good reputation amongst guerilla marketers because:
Keeping a Partnership ALIVE and THRIVING
What are the best methods for keeping a good business relationship?
The Beauty of Focus and Plan B
Did you ever have one of those days or weeks when you said "What in the world am I doing running this business?!"
Excuses Franchisees Make; When They Violate Exclusive Territory Agreements
One of the biggest excuses franchisees of home based and serviced based franchises make when violating their exclusive franchise agreement with their franchisor and fellow franchisees is: My Family Works There. As a franchisor, I cannot believe how many times neighboring franchisees steal each others clientele or work outside their exclusive franchise area. This jeopardizes trust within the franchise system between franchisees and franchisors.
Gold Medal Delegation
When the recent Games of the XXVIII Olympiad came to a close in Athens, two events stood out in my mind as perfect examples of the importance of time management:
Accepting Checks in Your Business Virtually Risk Free
Most businesses accept checks as form of payment for goods and services. However, accepting checks can be a risky endeavor if your company doesn't follow good policies and procedures for preventing loss from bad checks. In fact, the reason some businesses do not accept checks is because of a history excessive "bad checks" that costs their business to much money and aggravation, preferring to accept only cash and credit cards. Whether a business currently accepts checks or not, they can minimize the cost of accepting checks to less than 1%, which is less than half the 2% to 3% cost of credit card processing. The only payment method cheaper is accepting cash.
Why The Carwash Industry is Stagnant; What You Can Do to Change Your Field
Many years ago, I had warned the carwash industry of problems brewing in customer dissatisfaction as we continued to grow our car wash company into a National Franchise Chain. I warned of environmental controls, speed of wash, water usage, quality of labor, price points, car wash fundraisers, car damage, up selling and hot wax. At that time I was called everything under the Sun by operators who did not wish to change.
Reverse Merger: Have They Taken the Reverse out of Reverse Merger?
Are the promoters and consultants destroying the market for Reverse Merger? First lets take a look at reverse merger. In a Reverse Merger, an operating private company merges with a public company that has little or no assets, nor know liabilities (the "shell").
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