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Archive of posts published in the category: business

Small Business Leadership Lessons Learned in the Mud

In October 1066 AD, the Duke of Normandy, William I, was about to lay claim to England on the field of battle against King Harold.

As William led his men ashore in southeast England, on their way to what was to become the historic Battle of Hastings, legend has is that this man-who-would-be-king rather ignominiously stumbled and fell, face-first into the mud . One of the classic truths about leaders, including once and future kings and small business owners, is that stumbling is actually ordained, whether the untimely descent is a mistake we've bought upon ourselves, or an unfortunate circumstance that could happen to anyone.

Consequently, the question is not if we will stumble but how we have after the fall, with mud on our hands. One of my mentors used to say that our character is not measured by the challenges we face or the mistakes we make, but rather how we respond to them.

Back to our Norman invader. With his next action, the future king of England demonstrated how leaders often have to think fast in order to snatch victory form potential disaster: Looking up from the mud, seeing "Bad Omen" written all over the faces of his superstitious men, William stand up, displayed his muddied hands, and claimed, "By the splendor of God, I have taken possession of my realm; the earth of England is in my two hands."

So, when you look up from the mud, how do you have?

Of course, you could complain about how deep the mud is, which may sound like, "How can I grow my business in such a bad economy?"

Or you could make excuses about how the mud caused you to fall, "I do not know which is going to cause me to go out of business first, the Big Box competitors or people buying stuff on the Internet."

And then there's the always-handy option of blaming others for the mud. "Yes, ma'am, I know you bought it from us. But that's a manufacturer's defect.

At least one thing that has not changed in a thousand years is that there are still plenty of people standing around – employees, customers, etc. – watching our behavior when we stumble. And like William's soldiers, these latter-day witnesses are also vital to the success of our empires.

The Norman request at the Battle of Hastings arguably changed the course of history. Who knows what the world would look like today if our hero had become known as William The Whiner, instead of William The Conqueror?

So, when you fall face-down in the metaphorical mud of your battlefield, your future may well depend upon whether you can – as William the Conqueror did – stand up, assess the damage, accept the circumstances, claim the responsibility, remember on what employees and customers depend, and then drive on to win the day.

One last thing: It also does not hurt if, like William, you can think fast.

Write this on a rock … "Leaders …


Efficiencies Gained From Insurance Outsourcing

Today, insurers are seeking to simplify and streamline their internal processes. Insurance outsourcing companies vie for their business by demonstrating an in-depth understanding of the insurance industry. An insurer can choose to outsource non-core or core functions therefore achieving efficiencies in time, cost and service. Whatever the situation, outsource insurance companies offer a network of human capital that can respond to any need of the insurer. Once an insurer makes the decision to utilize the services of an insurance outsourcing company they must be able to identify which processes they will release and which ones they will handle internally. Additionally, the insurance outsourcing service can assist with identifying which services should be outsourced or in-sourced for the best results.

Insurance Metrics

The insurance industry is highly competitive and insurers have identified the need to investigate insurance outsourcing to manage costs, and to focus on their core competencies and capabilities. Insurance companies place a great focus on the following key metrics: pre-tax operating income, expense ratio, and business growth. Any reduction in expense ratio will produce greater profits. Insurance outsourcing provides cost savings by reducing headcount, reducing expenses, and providing opportunities for insurers to direct their resources to core business processes and competitiveness.

Human Resource Outsourcing

Insurance outsourcing can provide assistance with human resources. Rather than increasing the headcount to provide essential services, insurance companies are utilizing outsourcing strategies to keep costs down. Even information technology staff and processes can be outsourced. The insurer must be wise and determine which positions and processes must be carried on the payroll and which ones can be outsourced to achieve greater operational efficiency. Many back-office positions and processes are now being outsourced by numerous assurance companies so that they can achieve better business focus.

Leaner Organization

Today, only the fastest, leanest companies stand a chance of survival in competitive assurance markets. The market is characterized by mergers and acquisitions globally. Visionary leaders are identifying the power of outsource insurance to protect their viability and ensure the future sustainability of their operations. Insurers want to optimize the market and can only do so by shedding some of the weight to make them leaner and more agile in taking and implementing strategic decisions to put them on the competitive edge.

Benefits of Insurance Outsourcing

There are a myriad of benefits to be derived from outsource insurance. Providing clients and customers with accurate policies is the hallmark of service in the assurance industry; outsourcing policy processing will ensure accuracy and improved customer satisfaction. A backlog can stand out like a sore thumb in insurance operations, and insurance outsourcing is equipped to handle key insurance processes without the incidence of backlog that essentially has a negative impact on service levels. A reduction in expense ratios, costly training and retraining of staff, as well as process standardization, are all aspects of the insurance operations that can be effectively addressed by engaging in insurance outsourcing.

There is no doubt that there is great efficiency to be gained from insurance outsourcing. …


Small Business Should Invest in Big Data and Analytics

Big data refers to huge volumes of structured and unstructured data; however, processing such massive volumes of data via traditional data management tools is inefficient and impossible. To understand big data you have to realize the devices that are collecting it today e.g. bar code scanners, mobile cameras, CCTV cameras, motion sensors, smoke alarms, web analytical tools, CRMs, etc. From the examples, you can see that these devices collect a vast array of data types hence the structured and unstructured part in the definition. The sheer velocity at which the data is being produced cannot be controlled and processed using traditional methods and tools.

However, the use of big data and incorporation of big data analytical technology gives businesses the competitive edge over their competitors.

Big Data and Small Businesses

It is only a thing of the past when terms like big data and business intelligence were associated with large enterprises only. Today, small businesses have to leverage the data they are collecting in order to remain a part of the competition. For years, cost has remained the main reason why small businesses did not adopt big data analytical technologies, but this has changed now. There are budget-friendly tools available for small businesses to take advantage of the data they are collecting today. According to some experts, small businesses can take better advantage of big data since they are able to make the necessary changes far more quickly than large enterprises i.e. real-time response to insights from available data.

According to an IDG study in 2016, 78% of the large enterprises agree that big data strategy has the power to change how businesses have always operated. This shows the acceptance of big data technology and strategies for large enterprises and strengthens the fact that small businesses could become irrelevant if they did not adopt the same strategies.

Benefits of Large Data Analytics

Large Data and Big Companies, a report by IIA Director of Research, Tom Davenport, reveals that businesses are benefitting greatly from big data analytics especially in improving their products, making business decisions faster and reducing costs. Here are some ways small businesses can benefit from big data.

• Cost Savings

The upfront cost of implementing large data tools and strategies is high undoubtedly, but the long term benefits of doing so are matchless. The healthcare industry is a great example of how the use of large data can help businesses reduce their costs regardless of their size. Using predictive analytics, Medicare and Medicaid Services forestalled more than $210 million fraud in healthcare with just 2 years of utilizing the aforementioned technology.

In addition to preventing frauds, small businesses can also reduce their costs by steering clear of creating more inventory than needed, including better partners in the supply chain, etc.

• Improved Decision Making

This is the biggest benefit of large data. It allows businesses to expedite decision making by processing the data fast and giving insights in timely manner. In the past, business decisions were reserved for …


Complete Tips and Guide on Small Business Medical Insurance

Purchasing small business medical insurance is a thing that you might need to consider. Even though your company is not off the floor and operating yet, eventually you’ll need to consider it. In the end, it’ll be challenging to use workers if you fail to provide them your small business medical insurance plan. So with that being said, gathering lots of information and facts about small business medical insurance can be something that you need to perform immediately. Like mentioned previously, prior to being even prepared to invest in you need to begin investigating the industry. This tends to provide you with the information you’ll want to increase the risk for excellent choice ultimately.

So, just how would you like to learn more on small business medical insurance? The most effective way to do this is certainly on the internet. Certain, you are able to call an agent. But if you’re just in the details gathering stage you’ll be greater off trying to find small business medical insurance on the web. By doing this you are able to spend some time when obtaining the data, without having to concern yourself with an agent promoting you a specific thing.

You ought to be searching for almost any and each details that you may discover. And don’t forget, you need to write down most of the details that you simply obtain. By using this method when it does come time for you to purchase you are able to just look back at the records and move ahead.

As we discussed, purchasing small business medical insurance is very essential. It will not only help with keeping your workers satisfied, however it will likely maintain them healthier and balanced. As well as on top of all of that, you’ll also reach to reap some benefits from the small business health insurance plan that you really invest in. So begin your research quickly, and then spend some time determining what you would like to purchase once the moment arrives. Should you choose those two things you may finish up having a small business medical insurance strategy that both you and your staff is very pleased with.

What types of Small business Medical insurance is most beneficial?

The real big difference is when you’re purchasing a small business health insurance plan you might be don’t handling individual policies. You’ve currently joined the field of team policies plus they frequently vary a great deal out of your conventional personal policy.

The leading advantage to team policies is the fact that you will find usually zero limitations on who is able to be protected under the policy. This particular works in the worker’s benefit should they have experienced prior health problems or perhaps a surgical treatment previously that could cause them to become ineligible to have an individual policy. This kind of advantage doesn’t arrive without its expenses nevertheless, and frequently the employer must match minimal specifications to actually be regarded for a team policy.

Due to the …


Taking Advantage Of The PDIC Insurance

The Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation or PDIC guarantees every bank depositor that their deposit is insured if and whenever a bank goes under up to a deposit of P250,000 or its equivalent in dollars. How do we take advantage of this? By investing in rural banks and thrift banks that offer interest rates far beyond what current and more well know commercial and savings banks are offering.

In our present business environment, loan rates have taken a big dive down which means those looking to take out a loan whether being it housing, car, equity or personal loans are at an advantage in our current situation. But since loan rates have gone down, deposit rates have also taken a big nose dive. Top commercial banks have already taken steps to reduce a normal savings account rate from the previous 1% pa to 0.75% pa and time deposit rates are at an all time low. Even savings banks have adopted this trend of lowering rates. Bad news for retirees and people who rely on time deposit interest to pay for their monthly expenses such as food, utilities and other expenses.

This is where investing in rural banks and thrift banks becomes very attractive. Some offering as high as 16% pa or double your money in 6 years in which monthly interest rates are credited to a savings account which can be withdrawn anytime. But before you go rushing out and placing your entire life savings in these banks be warned. Most of these banks have names you probably have never heard before like rural bank and thrift bank of so and so, usually a name of a city or province in the Philippines. And these banks have a high risk of going under. This is where the PDIC insurance of P250,000 comes in handy.

Having experienced getting my money from PDIC, from banks that have closed before. I'm in the position to say that the trouble is worth the returns you are getting. I got my money from a closed bank in about 2 weeks from PDIC. Just make sure your total deposit at any given time in a thrift or rural bank does not exceed 250k. If you have lots of money do not forget to diversify them in different thrift and rural banks, each not exceeding the PDIC limit. And make sure that the banks you are depositing into are really PDIC insured which can be verified by a quick phone call or by visiting the PDIC website. Lastly, read lots of news papers or browse the website of the PDIC to keep yourself up to date on what is the current state of the banks you have your money deposited in. …


Manage Your Money Flow

Managing your money flow is the second step of building your financial house. It is like building the frame that the rest of the home will be built around.

The concept of managing your money flow is basically making sure that your inflow of cash is less than your outflow of cash. This process is called budgeting. When you create and follow a budget, you are living within your current means and you will avoid accumulating new debt.

When you take the time to create and follow a budget, you begin to see where your money goes each month. Armed with that knowledge you can cut back on some of those wasteful spending habits and free up money to start moving towards your goals.

Managing Your Money Flow Will Help You Reach Your Financial Goals

When you follow a budget, you can allocate money to reaching your financial goals. Maybe you want to save for things like retirement or a down payment on a house. Perhaps you want to start saving money to start that business you’ve been dreaming of. When you follow a budget, you have a plan to get where you want to go. When you have a goal and plan to reach that goal, your chances of getting there are exponentially increased.

Managing Your Money Flow Will Prepare You for Future Wealth

If you are always running out of money with your current income, chances are that you will have the same problem even if you earn more. Statistically, the more money you earn, the more money you’ll spend. This is called Parkinson’s Law. If you do not learn to manage what you have now, earning more money will not solve the problem.

Don’t be fooled by appearances. Many of those high income earners are broke. All of their income is going to pay for their big mortgage, the credit card bills, and the car loans. They are just broke at a different level.

Managing Your Money Flow Will Teach You Discipline

Wealthy people understand the importance of managing their money. They exercise self-discipline and they save up for purchases and earn interest on their savings while they do it. Broke people tend to go for instant gratification and buy things on credit. Often, whatever they buy ends up costing them twice as much by the time they finish paying for the credit card bill.

In the long run, saving up for purchases will actually allow you to buy twice as much stuff compared to buying with credit.

Alternatively, you could have the same amount of stuff, plus build up a big investment account on the side with all the money you save by not paying interest on debt.

Managing Your Money Flow: Conclusion

Over the years of working in the financial industry I have actually met a lot of low income earners that had higher net worths than many doctors and lawyers. This is simply because they managed their money well and allocated a portion each …


Looking For A Great Way To Show You Are An Expert In Your Field?

Potential customers are looking for you on the internet. Will they find you? When they find you, will they know that you are an expert at what you do? Do you have more than one area of ​​expertise? Having too many keywords on a single site can be counter productive. Here are some ideas for presenting your business without confusing your prospect.

Set up a separate website with a URL that includes the area of ​​expertise or keywords you want to optimize. This does not have to cost a lot of money or involve your web master. Use a blog and host it on a separate server (Host Gator is great for this purpose) so you can use your own domain name. For example, if you are an attorney, you could use estate planning.

Once you have created the blog, load it up with information about estate planning. Add articles, links to whitepapers, checklists etc. If this is not material you have created, be sure and get the author's permission for creating a link to their material. On your home page add a banner ad for your businesses. Be sure and list ways for your readers to contact you including a link to your website.

If you have more than one area of ​​expertise, create a blog site for each area. For example if you or others in your office specialize in real estate closings, create a separate blog site. Use your keywords – do not forget to localize your keywords by adding your city, county or state to the keyword.

Why does this work?

Because the site is content rich and focuses on a narrow topic that is keyword rich – the search engines will naturally rank your site higher when those keywords are used for searches. Keep in mind that one key factor in ranking is keyword density. This means the number of times your keyword is used on any given page. The rule of thumb is that 2-3% of your page should be keywords.

When your site does come up in the top rankings, the content makes it far more reliable than a generic website. You are demonstrating that you are the "go to" person in this field.

By placing an ad on the home page, you are showing that you are the expert in this area and the person to contact when the reader resonates with what you have written.

What you are looking for is search engines will rank your site higher and the creditability of the site will get your readers to click through. Once they are on your site, they will research the topic and then click on your banner advertisement. …


How to Avoid Losing Money in Forex Trading

If you have been struggling to make profit from Forex trading, we suggest that follow the tips given below. These tips will help you avoid losing money. Read on to know more.

1. Acquire Knowledge

Just because you have got started easily doesn’t mean you don’t need to take your time to do some research. For success in trading online, you have to do your best to learn as much as possible.

What you need to do is acquire as much knowledge as possible regarding the Forex market. For instance, you should know about economic and geopolitical factors that may have an effect on your selected pair of currency. Make sure you have due diligence. Aside from this, you should be ready to deal with the changes that may happen.

2. Look for the right broker

In Forex trading, people often choose a not-so-popular broker. The repute of a broker is very important for success in this type of business. Ideally, you may want to choose a professional who is part of the National Futures Association (NFA). It’s even better to for a better qualified one.

Before you hire one, make sure you know about the account offerings, withdrawal policies, spreads, commissions and other things.

3. Use practice accounts

No matter which platform you choose, you can try demo or practice accounts for free. While using a demo account, you can place theoretical bids. This will help you become familiar with the entry techniques.

Your trading account may get damaged if you make some terrible mistakes. For instance, you should not push the wrong butting during the opening or closing of a position. Aside, a major loss can occur if you commit multiple errors in order entry. Apart from the financial losses, you may suffer from intense stress.

4. Understand tax matters

It’s very important you know the tax matters. Moreover, you may want to understand the implications as well as the treatment of activities in the world of Forex Trading. This will help you a lot when you are going to pay tax down the road.

It’s better if you talk to a good tax specialist or accountant. The professional will help you avoid surprises when it’s time to pay tax. Moreover, you will be able to take advantage of tax laws as well. The problem is that the laws related to tax keep on changing. Therefore, we suggest that you develop a good relationship with a good broker or other specialist.

5. Use reasonable leverage

Leverage is what benefits you in Forex trading. If you earn high leverage, you can earn a lot of profit even if the amount you invested was small. In the same way, it can turn around to make you bear huge losses. So, it’s a good idea to avoid using unreasonable leverage.

So, if you are going to get started as a Forex trader, we suggest that you take each step after understating all the things. This way you can avoid losses and …


Business Contents Insurance – Protecting What You Use to Run Your Business

Many business owners want to protect their business against loss and taking out business contents insurance is a large part of that. On top of Building insurance and also protection from liability the addition of contents insurance is going to cover the items that you need to run your business from day to day.

Contents insurance will protect and movable items that you need to do business this can include things like computers, machinery and other pieces of equipment. You will be protected against things like fire and theft and depending on your policy it may also extend to cover things that are not always used on your promises like employee computers, and other tools. There are also policies that will include specialized uniforms.

If you are running your own home business then you need to be particularly careful if you have any existing insurance policies that cover you and your beloveds personally. Many of your personal policies will not automatically cover items in your home that are deemed specifically for business use. In most cases you can make a simple phone call to your insurer to have your cover extended for your home business.

Although contents insurance is extremely important is another business expense that you will have to bear, there are several ways to make your insurance cheaper. The easiest way to do this is to bundle your insurance together to cover both your property and the contents. You can find a range of home contents and business contents insurance policies that will give you a more favorable rate. In addition you will pay less to your insurer if you can show that you are taking effective measures to guard against damage and theft. This is primarily done through the installation of a security system or other similar measures …


What is the Easiest Way to Make Money From Home?

Many people dream about creating a home based business and finding the easiest ways to make money from home. Why do so few of them actually do anything about it? If you are one of these people that would love to make money from home and retire from the 9-5 work force then it is time to …

"Stop dreaming about life and start living the dream"

There are different schools of thoughts when it comes to starting a home based business. The first group of people will tell you that it is IMPOSSIBLE and the second will tell you it is EASY. I'm going to tell that creating a successful home business and making money from home is none of these things.

If you take the time to actually think about why most people are either overly optimistic or overly pessimistic it makes complete sense. The people that say its easy are normally trying to sell you something or convince you to join a program. Whilst the people that say it's impossible have usually been conned by someone who told them it was easy and when it turned out to be hard thought it was impossible.

Right here today I am going to create a third group, called the

'Truth About Making Money From Home'

Creating an income from home is very achievable if you approach it with a realistic attitude. If you are prepared to expand your knowledge and learn the adequate skills you can create an incredibly lucrative business.

6 figure enters within the first month is simply impossible BUT 6 figure enters within a year or two is very possible.

But what is the easiest way to make money from home?

You are faced with a number of different choices but it is my belief that the best system is this. I like to call it

Affiliate Marketing On Steroids

Most affiliate marketers promote products on Click Bank. This is fine if you are happy earning $ 20 – $ 70 per commission. What I suggest is to find affiliate programs that offer much larger awards. I am talking about $ 1000 to $ 20,000 awards from every and every sale. The amazing thing is that the conversion rates do not tend to be to different for big and small products.

So if you are serious about finding the easiest ways to make money from home – put your affiliate marketing on stereoids now. …