Archive for category: Productivity

Five Tips for Making Your Business More Efficient

July 15, 2013


Business transactions happen practically every moment of the day, and you want to make sure you’re keeping up with the pace. When ultimate efficiency is your primary goal, what are some tips you can keep in mind?

Staying in Touch
When employees go days without hearing from you or without receiving the latest updates on the company, they cannot be extremely efficient. Whether you send out communications through email or text message blasts, keeping in contact is incredibly important. Remember, you must let employees know if they are required to respond to communications when not at work.

Develop Dedicated Teams
If all of the employees are trying to accomplish all the same goals, you are going to end up with a bit of a mess. Build specific teams. Examples of teams include graphic designers, budgeting staff and so forth. Giving each unit its own goals with help to expedite operations. Read more →

Ultimate Tax Saving Tips for the Self-Employed

June 24, 2013

Ultimate Tax Saving Tips for the Self Employed

Being self-employed can be a pretty awesome gig; it essentially allows you not only to be your own boss and determine your own income, but being self-employed also gives you the freedom of working from home, on the road, or just about anywhere. In this sense, the work schedule of a self-employed individual is often a lot more flexible, which is great for those who have children or simply like being able to work on their own time. What many people do not realize upon beginning to earn income as a self-employed individual, however, is that they are often subjected to more taxes. This realization can be very stressful come tax time, especially if the unknowing individual realizes that he or she did not put enough money away throughout the year to make the tax payment.

Fortunately, there are some steps that can be taken to avoid stress and worry during tax time. For starters, all self-employed individuals should make themselves aware that they will be subject to what is referred to as a “self-employment tax.” This tax is charged around the rate of 13% of all income and cannot be offset by deductions or credits. At first, this may seem unfair, but there is solid justification for this tax, as it goes toward Medicare and Social Security that would typically be paid by a W2 employee.

For the most part, in order to ensure that self-employed individuals put enough money to pay taxes, it is generally recommended that one opens a savings account and sets at least 25% of all self-employment income aside with each payment received. Furthermore, it is required that all self-employed individuals who plan on owing $1,000 or more to the government at the end of the tax year file their taxes quarterly, which means making four smaller payments throughout the course of the year as opposed to just one. Failure to file quarterly can result in heavy fines and penalties, even if the total amount owed is paid once taxes are filed, so be sure to start paying quarterly as soon as possible.

Furthermore, it is recommended that all self-employed individuals keep careful track of all of their earnings and income. After all, every penny will need to be accurately reported to the government, and if you are inaccurate in your reporting, you risk being audited or charged penalties. By keeping these tips in mind, you will be better off when it comes time to file your taxes as a self-employed individual.

Article Written by:
Hayley
is a freelance financial and business blogger. She recommends Blue Tax, for tax debt help in Los Angeles.

Get your weekly HOME|WORK delivered to your inbox each Wednesday that keeps you up-to-date on ways you can grow your business.

6 Things Your Business Shouldn’t Stop Doing

April 29, 2013

6 Things Your Business Shouldn't Stop Doing

Your business is your livelihood, and your customers are the pillars of your business. To sustain the contentment they feel and the loyalty they have for your business, there are certain things you shouldn’t stop doing.

Keeping Your Customers First

Opening your doors to everyone evinces your eagerness to serve, and implementing a policy that favors customers demonstrates your confidence in the services you provide. It also denotes your commitment to your customers’ satisfaction. Nothing drives in more sales than a happy customer base, which is conducive to your company’s success and longevity.

Improving Your Services

Clearly, your services are why your customers are loyal to your brand, so it goes without saying that every second you invest in making your services more efficient is time well spent. More importantly, it’s one of the sure-fire ways you can streamline your company as well as give your customers something to talk about with countless others.

Training Your Staff to Learn More

What says a lot about you as a business owner is the kind of people you hire, so it’s of the utmost importance that you regularly train your staff team. The day you become complacent about your staff team will be the beginning of your company’s demise.

Giving Back to the Community

What’s a better way to show your customers how much you appreciate them than to give back to their community? In other words, be proactive and involved in the everyday matters that affect them. Whether financially involved or not, you should participate in philanthropic events, such as fundraisers and charities.

Reaching Out to and Teaming Up with Partners

While it’s crucial for you to make business moves that will help you to be competitive, you shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that it’s in your best interest to reach out to and team up with like-minded businesspersons. When you begin to turn down help from such persons, you potentially and inadvertently jeopardize your chances of getting bigger and better business opportunities, especially if you’re into dental office marketing.

Enhancing Your Communication Services

It should come as no surprise that customers expect your line of communication services to be in sync and straightforward. The last thing they want to experience, when seeking advice for concerns, is a delay, so you should go the extra mile to ensure your communication services are on point. Failing to do so may result in the demise of either your company or your longstanding reputation.

Article Written by:

Casey Haslem - I’m a 25 year old writer. My hobbies are reading, painting and pretending I know how to write a book (I don’t). I love meeting people and making new friends. Writing opens up a whole world of new ideas and possibilities for me. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Get your weekly HOME|WORK delivered to your inbox each Wednesday that keeps you up-to-date on ways you can grow your business.

5 Things That Will Make Your Employees Smile

February 25, 2013

When it comes to helping your employees feel good about themselves, nothing works better than a gift. Most employees at large companies often feel overlooked by their superiors because sometimes there is not enough time to recognize everyone on the team. On the other hand, small business employees also like to get some extra attention from time to time. At the end of the day, everyone loves to get some extra praise from their boss. If you think that your employees could use some extra support for the next few months, then perhaps you should think about sending out some gifts to everyone on the payroll. Gifts are always the perfect way for a business to reward quality work from their employees, so take a look at these corporate gift ideas if you need some help this time around. Or you can visit a site like O.C Tanner that specialize in these programs.

#1: iPad
The best thing you could get for everyone at the office is an iPad. Plenty of corporate businesses around the world are choosing this as their Christmas bonus gift each year, so it may make sense for you to go this route if you can afford it. You will need to be taking in a good amount of money if you want to give one of these to each one of your employees because they can get rather expensive depending on the model type.

#2: Coffee
Although you will usually want to stay away from food items while you are shopping around for your employees, coffee is never a bad idea. It seems like everyone who works for a living needs to start their day with a cup of coffee, so there is no reason that you should not help them out with that productivity problem. If you are worried about people who do not drink coffee, then perhaps you could get tea for some employees as well.

#3: Phones
Phones are one of the bet corporate gift ideas because they come with an added productivity bonus. It is usually much easier for people to communicate instantly when everyone has the same kind of phone. Read more →

How To Successfully Create a Meaningful Workplace

February 18, 2013

Meaningful Workplace

All of us would enjoy working in a meaningful environment where we feel valued both as part of the company team and as individuals. But how can a company foster this dual approach to employee support? A creative company president or planning team can establish objectives like these to provide a welcoming workplace environment. A meaningful workplace goes far beyond a simple recognition program. Here are some examples of what you can do as a business owner or manager to make work more meaningful for everyone.

A safe and attractive physical setting.
Employees work effectively in an environment where they don’t have to worry about tripping over cords or breathing noxious fumes. When employers make safety a priority, employees can focus exclusively on their work. Moreover, an aesthetically attractive physical environment can stimulate creativity or create a pleasant setting. As in home ownership, employees are more likely to take pride in their work when they enjoy a comfortable workspace. Read more →

The 5 Unbreakable Rules of Public Relation

January 28, 2013

Public relations is one of the most important aspects of corporate brand management that a company will ever engage in. When things are going great, you can use good public relations to build up a positive reputation for your company. If something goes wrong, then you call on that reputation to help prevent customers from abandoning you in droves.
When it comes to good public relations, there are five rules that a company must never break. If you try to carry on a public relations campaign without sticking to these basic rules, then your plan will be in trouble.

Put Yourself in the Public’s Shoes

One of the biggest challenges in public relations is trying to create good PR based on the public’s perception. Your company knows the information that it wants the public to see, but the public may not buy your side of the story. When you are developing a PR campaign, always see things from the public’s perspective.

Be Consistent with Information Release

When you are releasing a press release to your distribution service, you also need to make sure that the press release is on your website as well as your social networking presence. Remaining consistent with how, where and when you release information will reduce the possibility of misinterpretation.

Make It Searchable

When people want information these days, they head to the Internet. If you want people to see your press release and get your information, then you need to optimize every press release for pertinent keyword searches. It is the new wave of public relations and it is essential in getting your point across. Read more →

5 Greatest Marketing Geniuses of All Time

January 21, 2013

1. George Wilkes

One of history’s greatest marketing geniuses is George Wilkes, the first to use sex appeal to enhance advertisements. Originally a journalist, Wilkes and friend Enoch Camp together produced National Police Gazette in 1845. The magazine’s target audience was chiefly policemen, and many of the advertisements within were surrounded by attention-grabbing pictures of provocatively dressed women. Seductive pictures of attractive women began to appear within actual advertisements in later years, and as a trend initiated by Wilkes, sex is one of the most prevalent marketing techniques today.

2. Conrad Gessner

Viral marketing is another highly used technique in the modern marketing world. It now involves mainly computer technology, but it originated in 1559 with Conrad Gessner’s words of praise concerning the tulip, a rather unfamiliar concept to Europeans of the time. News of the tulip’s exotic beauty spread by word of mouth and became the craze known as “Tulipmania.” Some tulips sold for millions of dollars in modern monetary equivalence. Because of the raging success of the first viral marketing pattern started by Gessner, it is now another popular marketing technique. Read more →

A Stress-Free Guide to Conducting Market Research

January 16, 2013


Market research is an important activity for all businesses trying to reach out to their target markets. The development and provision of a high-quality service or product is usually pointless without market research. Through this activity, entrepreneurs can understand the voice of customer and tailor their products or services in line with their needs. Market research also provides an opportunity to investigate the competition and formulate ways of annihilating it. Furthermore, it is through market research that business people can determine whether their services or products have the capacity to meet the needs of their customers.

Sadly, the word ‘research’ has been construed by many business people to mean something more technical. As such, these individuals think of market research as a preserve of people who are technologically proficient. Other entrepreneurs have a very dim view of this exercise considering it to be a way of generating needless data. Mostly, the notion among these people is that the data would not contribute to the betterment of any business.

Conducting marketing research

Regardless of the negative views towards it, market research remains an integral ingredient for any business. For those with little knowledge about the exercise, the following tips could be helpful in undertaking a successful market research: Read more →

Ways of Improving Brand Exposure

January 14, 2013

Running a business from home has many advantages, not least of which is the ability to do all your work in nothing more than a pair of moth eaten woollen tights and a vintage Roger David sweater (not that I speak from experience, of course. It’s not as if I’m writing this while wearing precisely that get-up. Of course not)

But there are downsides, too, the primary one being lack of exposure to the general public. You can hardly employ Footscray Sign-a-rama to plaster your house in banners. Council’s and neighbours get quite twitchy about this approach to advertising. Hairdressing salons operating from commercial premises have the advantage of being located in areas with a medium/high volume of both foot and car traffic. It’s a safe bet that a solid percentage of a retail hairdressers business comes about as a result of people simply clocking the businesses existence as they make their way about their day. Home based hairdressing businesses cannot rely on such methods of attracting trade.

So how do you draw attention to your brand without dressing up in a chicken suit and clucking your way down Punt Road at 9am every day? Vehicle signage is the perfect solution. Your car is one of the most powerful forms of advertising you have, with the potential to be seen by thousands of people per day. A simple trip to the supermarket to buy bread could see you attract a slew of new customers. Best of all, unlike many other forms of advertising, vehicle signage is a one off investment, with ongoing rewards. Read more →

5 Ways to Cost-Efficiently Double Your Customer Base

January 7, 2013


Attracting new customers to a business is an important part of ensuring the continued growth of a company. However, many businesses fail to be able to identify potential customers in their market while also forgetting to capitalize on the customers who they have already served. For this reason, the following tips are offered to help any business to cost-effectively double their customer base in a short period of time.

Reward Customer Loyalty

Many companies already offer discount programs and coupons to their current customers. However, these methods often do little to create enough excitement to generate word-of-mouth business. To stand out, a business should offer rewards that pamper their customers. Sending a floral arrangement, a gift certificate for a beauty treatment or a small token of appreciation will make customers feel pampered and ready to tout a business’ services to their friends and neighbors.

Identify a Potential Market

It is too easy to continue to cater to the same demographic of customers. Therefore, it is important to branch out and identify a new market that has the potential for bringing in customers. Then, a direct mail or online campaign can be initiated to make the market aware of the company’s services. Read more →

© 2012. The Working House, LLC. All Rights Reserved