The Blog - Where Business Collides with Human Nature

A Few Thoughts About Christmas (Holiday) Emails

You may celebrate Christmas or you may celebrate for many other reasons in December. Saying "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays" is your choice and as it comes from the heart, you make someone's day. 

Christmas (Holiday) cards in the snail mail can be a delight. They can be artistic, thoughtful, relevant, and include photos to show 'the latest' status.  I love those pop-ups cards!  It takes time to lick a stamp, an envelope and manage to get them in the mail. In our new world of digital, a Christmas card in the mail is more valuable than ever. (Not everyone agrees though, as you will read here.)

Then email became the mechanism of choice. Anyone can send out an image with a few words to millions of people, in an instant, at a very low cost.  And so companies small and large do just that.  The Christmas (Holiday) card email is a task and the staff checks it off as done.

Some will pay to use a tool like eCards2go but it takes more work and more cash. Jacquielawson.com has been around since 2000 and brings some unique creativity to holiday (Christmas) cards but again, it is difficult to click one button to send to many. 

Fortunately, stock photo websites have a plethora of Christmas (Holiday) images. You can get generic greeting images or an unusual photo to bring a smile.

To help consider the how and why of Christmas holiday emails, here are a few notes and resources.

Topics: Email Marketing Guerrilla Marketing

Playground Lessons Not to Follow in Business Negotiations

We were all taught basic playground etiquette growing up. These life-lessons aimed to keep us out of trouble and provided us with some basic rules about respect and how to resolve conflict.

However, when it comes to achieving business success, playground lessons don’t always apply. Negotiation skills, such as those taught in the best negotiation skills training, must now replace the old playground tactics. While you can still maintain friends in business, as you could at school, it is smart to prioritize the best negotiation strategy while considering consequences and foreseeing outcomes.

Here are five playground lessons that do not apply when negotiating -- and the new counter-lessons you can use to ensure negotiation success.

Topics: Negotiation Sales Business Culture

Say Goodbye to Time Famine with These Schedule Hacks

Do you ever feel like there aren't enough hours in the day and you don't have enough time to finish everything? If you do, you're not alone. It even has a name that started showing up in scientific studies around the turn of the century: time famine.

What is time famine, and what can you do to hack your schedule and find more time in your day?

Topics: Time Management Productivity Personal Development

Need More Time? Increase Productivity with IFTTT and Zapier

Almost every everyone carries a cell phone in his/her pocket. When one speaks of cellphones, the conversation turns immediately to mobile applications. Amongst the clutter of many apps, products, and services, it is often difficult to keep on top of things. The more options there are to choose, the harder it is to manage.

What if your email client could organize your emails in folders without having to do it manually? What if you could get a notification every time your competitor made a change on their website? What if you could track all hashtags related to your business? Thanks to automation services like IFTTT and Zapier, you can do all this.

Topics: Productivity Free Software apps

“Get Rich Quick” by Selling Information

“Anyone can do it” – is probably true. “Anyone” can be a great success selling MLM products, while singing on American Idol, be a bestselling author, or be successful after being rejected on Shark Tank.

Is it possible to get 1,000,000 purchases of a product?  Possibly, but the list of considerations below have to line up perfectly and good karma will be needed.

The get rich quick plan to sell 1,000,000 may require:

20,000,000 views at 5% conversion = 1,000,000 purchases
  or
10,000,000 views at 10% conversion = 1,000,000 purchases

Topics: Business Success Business Planning

Hack Your Chronotype (Get more done!)

Dr. Oz has talked about it and Wikipedia offers information about Chronotype and  Circadian Rhythms. You can find a quiz here to learn about your specific Chronotype. While you have heard people say they are a "night owl", there are actually four different Chronotypes:

Dolphin, Lion, Wolf and Bear.

Which are you?

By understanding your chronotype (or the chronotype of your staff), you can adapt and improve your energy levels, improve relationships and 'get more done'.

According to clinical psychologist and sleep specialist Michael Breus, your genetics can tell you when it’s the perfect time to do just about anything.

Try using some of the tips and techniques listed below to power through your energy lows and come back out on top. (though I am unsure about a giggle break and watching kitten videos.)

Topics: Health Personal Development Leadership Personality

How Handwriting Can Make You Smarter and More Productive

It turns out that if you want your child to learn to speak better, you don't want to sit them in front of a TV to watch Sesame Street or other educational TV shows. I have verified this to be true after spending many hours interviewing a Speech Language Pathologist. She remains emphatic that parents can do harm by using Sesame Street as a long term babysitter and she often hears these parents ask "Why doesn't my child know how to talk?"

There is some logic that says 'get smarter by watching' but in reality... we improve our skills and knowledge by doing. 

Writing vs typing - which helps you get smarter?  If you are a highly skilled typist, you can almost do two things at once. Your fingers have memorized the keyboard and they fly on their own, even when having a conversation.

When you sit down with a pencil (or pen) and paper and begin to turn your thoughts into new concepts to conquer the world or change the community, your brain works differently.

Topics: Writing Self-Improvement

15 Questions to Ask Before Launching Your Startup

Is your business idea the next unicorn waiting to be launched? Or is it just another also-ran with no growth potential?

These questions can lead to sleepless nights for any aspiring entrepreneur. Luckily, there is a way to know if your idea will be successful or not, by validating it before you begin.

Here are 15 questions to ask before building your startup and commit significant time, money & resources. 

Topics: Startup Start a Business

Business Writing: Tips to Improve This Essential Leadership Skill

To gain more understanding and cooperation from others, using clear writing is one of the most important skills that you can develop in business. Effective communication and writing are key factors in career success. Writing is already a part of your daily activities and you may be unknowingly doing more harm than good.

Topics: Writing Content Personal Development Business Blogging

Mobile Recruiting: Improving the Candidate Experience

In a 2013 survey by Glassdoor, 89% of jobseekers said that their mobile device is an important tool and resource for their job search. Today, this number is undoubtedly higher. In today's candidate-driven job market, you need to focus on the candidate experience if you want to attract top talent. We'll show you how you can improve your candidate experience and get the most qualified candidates to apply to your jobs.

Topics: Recruiting Staffing Mobile HR

How to Launch a Successful SaaS Startup

Even though software as a service (SaaS) is a well-known business niche for several decades, the interest to this product distribution model remains on the verge of its popularity. 

Topics: SaaS Startup Start a Business

10 Apps and Tools for Entrepreneurs to Write a Winning Business Plan

You are highly motivated; you hear others say ‘you are a genius, and you just had a million-dollar idea. Even with a genius idea for a new business, you know the importance of getting your idea down in a well thought out plan. It is no secret that a majority of business startups fail in the first four years.

Topics: Start a Business Startup Business Planning Entrepreneurship