Computer Related Habits From Small Business Owner - Be Prepared, Avoid Despair
Aside from the fear of losing a spreadsheet or research project prepared for a client, what prompted me to write this article was the realization that it takes nothing short of persistent follow up to stay ahead of computer threats which could ruin my business. I also accepted the fact that keeping my computer free of viruses and spam is paramount to ensuring my computer is not going to harm others.
If you don't have a technical assistance person or call desk to support you and users of the computers that are part of your business, it is time to establish a routine that prepares you for potential losses or lapses.
If you are convinced protecting your computer is important, but still haven't done anything about it, then I urge you to hire or barter with someone who is technically competent to teach you, or set up a technical support program.
I don't offer these services, but I can help you evaluate your needs and the type of provider that would work best for you. Also, look in the phone book under the heading "Computer-Services & Repair" for providers in your area. If worse comes to worst, there's a heading for "Computer-Data Recovery" services.
Also, I hate to tell you, but don't expect much sympathy these days from people about losing all your emails, files and pictures. Almost everyone has their own "been there, done that" tale tell. It might even be worse than yours.
If you are not already doing so, my advice as a business owner is to do the following on a weekly or at least monthly basis. Please note I am keeping terminology very broad in order to reach a wide range of users. Whether you use a Mac or PC here's what you should do:
- Monitor updates of the programs you rely upon. The periodic release of downloadable updates to operating programs and software applications is an advisable layer of protection. Enable the automatic notification feature so you are prompted when downloads are available.
- Run virus scans regularly. Say it again and commit to setting a weekly schedule. Always review the results before proceeding. Never ignore the warning of a known threat.
- Back up regularly. The price of blank, recordable media is no longer prohibitive. If you have lots of data, get a "zip drive" device that stores data on cartridges that hold more than a CD or disk. The initial set up can be complicated, and it's no disgrace to ask for help from a technically inclined friend or contractor.
- In a somewhat logical manner, file emails for future reference. Set up folders by the names of people you work with or by active projects. Set a routine of emptying your inbox on a regular basis.
- Fine tune file management settings so the auto-archive and auto-delete functions behave as you wish. Otherwise, you might not know where all your emails go after a feature kicks in. The Outlook rules feature lets you customize even further.
Another good habit is keeping the boxes and media for software applications both together and accessible to your computer. Resist the temptation to tuck those oversized boxes away. Try to keep at least the operating system applications at close hand.
As long as you are using the application, do not get rid of either the box or media needed to install it. Over time, you (or the person who works on your computer) will need these. Product registration, rebates, upgrades and product support require the key numbers and/or inserting the media.
Indeed, all of these somewhat tedious tasks take away from my time delivering billable work or promoting my business. But the thing is, when the routines are complete and back ups stowed, I am less anxious about computer infiltration or the possibility of a system failure. That kind of peace of mind is worth the investment.
Elisa Shostak is the founder of Compass Rose Strategic Consulting LLC, an advisory service and secondary research firm based in Seattle, Washington.
Keep TRACK of your Business Relationships and Gain Profits
How do you know when an alliance needs to be monitored and tracked?
Is This The Way Its Always Been Done?
Let's face it, we all tend to get stuck in doing things 'the way they've always been done', and creating products, or services, in a similarly conservative mode.
Survival Tips For Small Businesses
You may be in Mail Order, Direct Mail, or you may be a local merchant with 150 employees; whichever, however orwhatever---you've got to know how to keep your business aliveduring economic recessions. Anytime the cash flow in a business,large or small, starts to tighten up, the money management ofthat business has to be run as a "tight ship."
From Birth to Death
Your product is dying. With the same inevitability that we humans move ever closer to death, so does every software application move towards its eventual demise.
7 Card Tricks That Improve Your Personal Networking Power
SBAs 8(a) Program Can Help Some Companies Compete
Q: A friend told me that as a woman of Native American descent I might be eligible for a special SBA program that will help me start a small business. He said I could compete for government contracts through this program. Can you tell me what SBA program he's referring to?-- Clara P.
The Greatest Challenges the Internet Consultant Faces!
While there are few career paths that some would call perfect, being a consultant comes pretty close to having it all. Yet while it is one of the best ways to earn a living, there are challenges and pitfalls that are sometimes overwhelming and unexpected.
Entrepreneurs and Franchisors Watch Out
New Franchisors and Entrepreneurs need to watch out as they enter into the world of franchising. What advice can I give to a new franchisor, I was asked today by another entrepreneur with a wonderful new concept; what are the tiger traps that lay ahead?
Small Business and Wichita
Owning a small business in Wichita, KS might not be a bad idea, job growth is good, housing has rebounded and the aviation manufacturing capital of the world is on an aileron roll. So consumer spending is up and retail and service sectors are doing fine again.
How To Start A Blind Cleaning Business Quickly And Easily
Starting the blind cleaning business is one of the best marketable business ideas you could latch on to. If you give the requisite amount of time and dedication, there will be no cap on your earnings. No wonder, there is pleasure unlimited in being one's own boss. A lot of ambitious people like you have made successful entrepreneurs of themselves, as they mastered the principles of a successful blind cleaning service.
11 MONSTROUS Small Business Marketing Mistakes and How To Avoid Them
Increase your profit potential by identifying ? and avoiding ? these 11 marketing mistakes.
Using Technology to Manage Customer Loyalty
Don't let your customer satisfaction research initiative collect dust on a shelf. Integrate technology with research to optimize the use of customer information.
Entrepreneurs Go Virtual!
With the massive explosion of start-ups and home businesses developing, you'll be hard pressed to not know of someone going down the entrepreneurial route. Nowadays you can set-up shop and start trading in a matter of days, and the preferred choice for the neo entrepreneur is a service called Virtual Offices.
Entrepreneur to Employer
You make the decision to go into business and for some time work from home or in leased premises and your business starts to grow.
Reclaim Equipment Detailing Industry and NPDES, EPA, Storm Water Rules
It behooves every professional mobile auto detailer to stay up with the reclaim equipment necessary to comply with the NPDES, EPA and storm water rules. Every company has a responsibility to not pollute the water supplies. If you are an auto detailer perhaps I might be able to assist you in complying without breaking your bank. There are inexpensive ways to keep your waste wash water out of the storm drains.
Small Business Strategies - Four Critical Success Factors
Wichita KS; Anything is Possible in Wichita Business
Just when the entire state was kissing Wichita goodbye, economically speaking, they turn around their economy like a hammer-head stall. The BTK is caught and has gone away and the Aircraft Industry has decided to stay. Last year 40% of all the aircraft in the world were made in Wichita and instead of losing market share they are gaining ground on the other aerospace manufacturing cities in the United States and around the world.
Get Approved for a Franchise
Deciding to start your own franchise is just one of the first steps to getting started. Buying a franchise is a lot like dating. You and the company have to be a good fit. The company you are considering starting a franchise with must fit your needs, and you must meet the guidelines they have set up.
Take a Break - Have a Pity Party
Pity parties are nothing new. In fact, we do it all the time and I'm guessing that you probably go to many... you know, you get together with some friends and you'll bemoan the state of your industry. No one understands what we do and how we can help them. Companies are always spending less and less on the services I have to offer. I only get called in to sort things out when it's too late. Then they expect me to work miracles. Why don't people plan ahead?
Boat Hull Cleaning Procedures for Owners and Detailers
For really tough boat hull cleaning you will need to break out the acid. Muratic acid is the best for this. You'll want to have a 50/50 mix of muratic acid of 6-8% concentrated (12% is the highest concentration you can legally buy over the counter), water and a good strong sprayer. You can purchase muratic acid at Wal*Mart, K-Mart, Pool Supply Stores, Home Depot, Lowe's, Van Waters and Rogers Chemicals. Sears Craftsman makes a nice strong sprayer or try a local store for another brand of commercial pump-up sprayer.
|© Athifea Distribution LLC - 2013|