THE PRODUCTIVITY INSTITUTE NEWSLETTER
Friday, March 27, 2009
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This Issue's Featured Organization: BNI
Networking: Building relationships,
NOT cold calling in person
We’ve all been there, at some “networking event” where all the attendees can’t wait to shove their business cards in our face. Shark on Shark networking! Ouch. No problem, we’ve read books that tell us how to give a great “elevator pitch”. So, now we are prepared for success. We can build a real network of relationships, right? Nope!
This is not networking; this is cold calling in person. It’s based upon the faulty (and very common) idea that you must get your message across (continue)
Newsletter topics: About Consultants, Entrepreneurs, Task Management, Twitter, Hosted Unified Communications
by Bruce Newman
Companies need consultants
Regardless of their size, all companies need consultants – they can’t have expertise in every area. Consulting is a cost effective means of providing companies with the expertise they require in order to meet their specific needs. One advantage of outstanding consultants is their wide breadth of experience and knowledge - which frequently translates into excellent project design and results that may extend beyond the initial range of the engagement’s core focus. There have also been many reported instances of consultants providing feedback and guidance on issues outside the parameters of their original project, usually as a result(continue)
by Victoria Duff
Experienced business professionals will tell you that a recession is the best time to start a new business. Your competition is cutting back spending or going out of business altogether, while your overhead is small and your message is new and fresh. Opportunities abound to pick up customers that have seen their usual vendors go out of business or cut personnel and services in an attempt to stay alive. You can also find good employees among those who have been laid off in your industry.
With all this opportunity, life for the new entrepreneur should be a walk down Easy Street, but it is not. Most start-ups have one vital problem in common: a very small budget. Funding a start-up is even more difficult during a slow economy because even your family and best friends are not willing to give you what may be the very money they need to keep their own lives together.
First Mistake – Foolish Thrift
It is times like this that many new entrepreneurs make their biggest mistakes in hope of saving money. When professional experience
by Patrick Seaton
Small business owners certainly understand the need to introduce long-term improvement initiatives into their organization. The pay-off that some companies are experiencing is astounding and certainly helps pave their path into the future with more profits, more flexibility, and more stability.
Unfortunately, not every company has found the same success. While companies strive to be lean and mean through improvement initiatives, the changes can be overwhelming for the small company that doesn’t have somebody on staff who can fill the crucial role of “Change Champion.” This champion role is either divided among several people or is just one of many hats a single person wears. The bottom line – the initiative does not progress as hoped and lacks the momentum needed to really change the company’s culture and processes into those of a world class company.
JUST IN: Twitter For Business
by Melanie DePaoli
Twitter is quite the enigma. Everyone has an opinion, but no one really knows what you are supposed to do with it. The New York Times said it best with It’s What You Make It. I am not going to go through all of the features of Twitter because you can find that elsewhere. Instead, I am going to talk about using Twitter for business.
Like so many, I am relatively new to the world of Twitter. Before signing up though I wanted to know “if anyone has received business from Twitter.” I posted that question on various sites to see what others experience has been. The general consensus was that no one has received business (directly) from Twitter. So if you are looking to get more business from a new source, you will have to look elsewhere.
That being said, if you are looking for a tool to get the word out about your company, your product or your service, Twitter is IT! Twitter is a great way to talk about what is important in your area of specialty. It also makes you think, because you have to use smaller phrases and words that will entice your follows to read what you write and hopefully re-tweet your tweet.(continue)
Hosted Unified Communications
by Frank Grillo
Before the economic firestorm began raging, unified communications, or UC for short, was the buzz phrase du jour in boardrooms throughout the nation. Success stories from UC deployments were consistently flowing, and the majority of IT executives report that if they didn’t already have UC, it was in the plans. And it’s no wonder—unified communications can offer tremendous benefits for companies of all sizes.
True UC solutions deliver a comprehensive toolset that covers the spectrum of communications needs – from advanced VoIP functionality to multimedia collaboration tools such as chat, video and web conferencing, file sharing, unified messaging and integration with popular technologies such as Microsoft Outlook—essentially creating a paradigm shift in the way people communicate with each other and connect to the information they need.(continue)
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