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Do you Remember? Brain Boosting Tips
by On February 22, 2017
I’ve never encountered someone with a perfect memory. Not that I can remember, anyway. Everybody is a little bit different when it comes to memory retention. But there are ways to improve your memory, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting something important.

Workout your Brain 

Firstly, just like a regular workout, you need to stimulate your brain in different ways to keep it healthy. The more time you spend working out your brain, the better your memory will get. However, the activity should be something new to you, that’s how you strengthen your brain. In addition, a great brain exercise will be something that is challenging and requires your full attention. Find activities that start at an easy level, and get progressively more difficult as you improve. Most importantly, find activities that are not only challenging but interesting to you.

Workout your Body

Second, physical exercise is just as important as mental exercise. So don’t neglect the gym! Staying active will ensure that your brain stays sharp. Not only does exercise increase the oxygen to your brain, but it also reduces stress. As a general rule, any sort of exercise that gets your blood pumping is good for your brain. Also, a morning workout can help get rid of morning fog and prep your brain for the rest of the day.

Get to Bed

In order to avoid sleep deprivation, you should be getting a solid 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep a night. As a matter of fact, getting even a few hours a sleep can negatively affect your memory. For this reason, make a sleep schedule and stick to it. Don’t break your routine, even if it’s a weekend and you feel like sleeping in. Additionally, melatonin is a hormone that makes you sleepy and is suppressed by certain light. Try to avoid any sort of screen such as a TV or phone at least an hour before bed. Also, limit your caffeine intake. Needing caffeine can be a vicious cycle, keeping you up at night but then you might need it to wake up the next day.

Hang Out With Friends

Most people are pretty sociable beings. Some good news for those chatterboxes, meaningful relationships with others is very beneficial to memory retention. In fact, there have been studies that show those with the most active social calendar have a slower rate of memory decline.

De-stress

Not only is stress, well, stressful, but it can also lead to memory loss. Continued stress over a long period of time will destroy brain cells. To combat this, try to focus on one task at a time and don’t forget to relax. Many find solace in meditation which has been said to actually improve memory.

Laughter is the Best Medicine 

It’s true, laughter is great for your emotional health and can help with memory retention. Learn to laugh at your embarrassing moments and share with others. Also, surround yourself with others that can find humor in everything. You know what they say about laughter being contagious.

Diet

For the most part, your diet should consist of a nice balance of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and of course healthy fats. Eating this way is good for your brain and will help with memory retention.
Successful Family Owned Businesses
by On February 15, 2017
There are a lot more family-owned businesses than you might think. Some of today’s largest companies are owned and operated by families. In fact, over 30% of businesses with sales over $1 billion are family run. However, working with family members isn’t always easy. Companies that are successful got to that point because of hard work and determination. Some say that it shows great maturity if you’re able to work with family. Interestingly, more and more women are taking over family owned businesses. Traditionally, the first born son would take over the business. In this week’s blog, we’ll take an in-depth look at some of the most successful family owned businesses.

Walmart

First, Walmart may be the most well-known family business there is. It was founded by Sam Walton in 1962 and is still run by the Walton family today. The growth was incredible, and within the first five years, Walmart went from one store in Bentonville, Arkansas to 24 stores all across Arkansas. In addition, Walmart has become one of the top retailers with sales well into the billions.

Nike

Nike was founded by Phil Knight in 1964 and was originally known as Blue Ribbon Sports. The company grew into one of the most successful athletic apparel and accessory businesses in the world. In the beginning, employees sold shoes out of their cars. However, in 1966 Nike opened it’s first brick and mortar store and that was no longer a job requirement. Additionally, the very famous Nike swoosh was first used in 1971. Throughout the companies ups and downs, Phil Knight was the chairman until 2015 when he announced he would be stepping down. To keep the family legacy alive, his son Travis Knight will be taking a seat on the board.

Volkswagen

Secondly, we’ll take a look at the German automaker, Volkswagen. The company has been around since the 1930’s, a time when most vehicles being produced were luxury cars. Therefore, the majority of germans were unable to afford vehicles. On the other hand, Volkswagen (with the help of Adolf Hitler) encouraged people to save money every week until they could afford a car. Currently, Volkswagen is the largest automaker in the world and ranked seventh on the Fortune Global 500 list.

Ford

Next, the Ford Motor Company has been around since 1903 and was founded by Henry Ford. The company was the first to introduce large-scale manufacturing for vehicles using assembly lines. Also, Ford has been family run for over 100 years. Unfortunately, the 2008 financial crisis lead to hard times for the business. But, the company has and continues to make a strong comeback.

Comcast

The Comcast Corporation is widely known for being one of the largest telecommunications company in the world. The Roberts family have had the controlling stake since 1963 when it was known as American Cable Systems. Despite having a reputation for not so stellar customer service, Comcast has continued to grow. In fact, the CEO is one of the highest paid executives in the U.S.

Sales tips for the Startup
by On February 8, 2017
Owning your own business can be extremely rewarding. How many people do you know that wish they were their own boss? On the other hand, it’s not always easy. A lot of work gets put into owning your own business. In addition, marketing your business correctly can lead to financial success. Done incorrectly, and you may feel like you’re throwing money away. If you weren’t born a salesperson, never fear. We’ve compiled a list of sales tips for the startup.

Listening skills

First of all, listening is one of the most important sales tips. Rather than going straight into a sales pitch, let your customer talk. Sometimes, you’ll find that they need something completely different. Ask questions and listen to their answers. Consequently, you’ll be more able to recommend a product that will fit their needs. Plus, this approach is more personal, and customers appreciate that.

Build awareness

Secondly, market your product or business right away. A lot of businesses wait until their product launch day before they do any sort of marketing. Not a good idea! How do you expect to start selling right away if people don’t know anything about your product? If there is no demand, you’ll waste a lot of time and money fixing that. However, marketing campaigns before a product launch will prevent that issue.

Get Social

This section is really two parts. To begin with, take advantage of social networks. Use websites like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn to make yourself known. In today’s world, people love to shop online and interact online. Talk to your customers and build relationships with them in a digital arena. Things like that don’t go unnoticed and could lead to more referrals and sales. Similarly, connect with peers and local business owners in the real world. Scope out some networking events and meet new people. The more you network, the bigger reach you’ll have for your business. In other words, become a social butterfly.

Don’t Focus on competition 

Additionally, try not to focus on the competition. That energy is better spent on your customers. There is always going to be competition, the important thing is how you handle that. Also, market the benefits of your product, not a comparison. Make sure you highlight the ways that your product will improve your customer’s life. Simply saying that your product is better doesn’t tell the user why.

Measuring success

Lastly, an important tip for startups is making sure you are able to measure the results of your marketing campaigns. If you are marketing your product blindly, there is no way to tell what’s working and what isn’t. If you’re not tracking, you could potentially be wasting money on marketing that doesn’t increase sales. For that reason, implement a way to measure your results. In addition, do some market research by running smaller campaigns. That way if they are unsuccessful you’re not spending a ton of money, but you still learn in the process.
Mind Your Business Manners
by On February 1, 2017
Relationships are the heart of a successful business, and in relationships, manners matter. Business etiquette goes a long way in maintaining existing connections and forming new ones. Traditional etiquette practices are still important today, but digital technology presents new considerations. It doesn’t take long to brush up on your etiquette and learn to mind your business manners.

Conversation balance

As a leader, you have a lot to say, but some people say too much. Not only is finding balance in a conversation polite, but it’s the best way to have a productive discussion. One of the biggest mistakes a person can make is to dominate the conversation, spending more time talking about themselves than taking an interest in the person across the table. People who habitually dominate a conversation come across as self-absorbed. This is a turnoff for prospective employees, potential clients and current business partners.
The opposite extreme of conversation balance can also be true. Not sharing enough can be just as damaging as talking too much. Leaders who don’t contribute to discussions won’t be able to promote their ideas, share their goals and guide their employees. Their lack of participation can make them seem uninterested or unintelligent. Good conversationalists find the balance between dominance and weakness in a discussion.

Phone attention etiquette 

Communication methods have expanded with technology, and now many business conversations take place online. Business leaders have an obligation to stay connected to their partners, employees and clients. It’s a big responsibility that requires a lot of time and attention, but some people go overboard and come across as impolite. Constantly checking text messages, emails and voicemails is rude and frustrating during a face-to-face interaction. While you’re checking your messages, you’re sending the message that you don’t value the person who is right in front of you. The best practice is to set your phone aside and focus your attention on having a productive conversation in real life.

Online communication

Online communication is standard for every business. In some cases, the only contact you will have with customers is via an Internet platform, whether it’s social media, email or an instant messaging service. Messages should reflect the company’s identity and values across all platforms. Understanding how each different social media application is used will help you have an effective online presence and dodge social media blunders. Since every business has their own standards and policies for online engagement, it’s impossible to set strict rules. There are some general guidelines, however, that are applicable for every business.
Emails should be concise and professional, using correct grammar. They should always include a subject line and a sign-off to keep everything organized and avoid confusion. On social media platforms, it’s important to keep business and personal accounts separate. Monitor them regularly, because consumers expect prompt responses. Late replies or ignored inquiries will be seen as rude. Posts should be short and to the point, with correct punctuation and spelling. When you engage with consumers and business partners over an instant messaging platform, the conversation should be a brief exchange of information. This is best for problems and questions that can be easily resolved.

Etiquette in the little things

Even with the rise of digital communication, traditional etiquette practices continue to be relevant. Make an effort to learn the names of employees and partners at every level. These people are the foundation of your success, and this small gesture will show that you value their support and contribution to your business. Refrain from badmouthing the competition, employees or clients. You never know who is listening, and this can leave a strong negative impression. Sending a personalized thank you note might seem old fashioned, but it’s an easy way to build a positive reputation.
Successful leaders learn to invest in their relationships with partners, employees and consumers. Etiquette is an important part of that. Business etiquette today is built upon traditional practices and adjusted to accommodate digital advancements. Whether you’re building new connections or maintaining old ones, don’t forget to mind your business manners.