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Октябрь 2011

Letter to young managers…

Letter to young managers…

If you are a young manager, perhaps recently graduated, then there’s a good chance you are intelligent, confident and ambitious — keen to make your mark in the world. Chances are also high that you have high expectations of both the job and the organization, and that you are quite independent.

Additionally, if you have been promoted from within the team, then no doubt you have some very good ideas on what needs improving. Your own manager will see you as innovative, technologically savvy and willing to learn. He or she may have said to colleagues "My new team leader / manager will be like a breath of fresh air for the team — just what the doctor ordered."

All of your traits and characteristics are highly valued by your employer — probably the reason you have been promoted so quickly. Applied appropriately, they are very positive characteristics to have and will ensure your success in your new role.

On the downside, these same characteristics that are valued so highly by your employer, may count for nothing with the people you are about to manage. They did not appoint you.

Having worked with many experienced and not so experienced managers, I have seen what leads to success and what can impede success. Below are my nine principles for avoiding career derailment. They are in my own personal priority order and are what experienced managers call "learning how to learn".

Priority #1: Give recognition to your people for good work regularly. Find at least one of your team doing something well every day and thank them specifically for what they have done. This builds a positive culture within your team.

Priority #2: Ask for help when you need it. Use the experience within your team. It’s easy to think that "I’m the manager. I’m supposed to know what I’m doing, so it may make me look weak if I ask for help." There’s only a very slight difference between self confidence and arrogance. The self confident manager says "I definitely know there is an answer (somewhere) to this challenge or problem." Whereas the arrogant manager says "I have the answer to this challenge or problem".

Priority #3: Keep a Learning Journal. Jot down things in a small pocket book that you think may be important. In particular, when you do overcome a major challenge or problem, take time to reflect (and record) — What was the challenge? What did I do that worked well? What did I do that did not work so well? What will I do differently next time? Review your journal once a week on a designated day and time. Make this a habit.

Priority #4: Avoid snap decisions. Certainly trust your gut instinct, but before jumping into action, reflect — Is this the best approach for this issue at this time? What are some other alternatives?

Priority #5: Admit mistakes. The leadership research suggests that all great leaders share one common trait — they are willing to admit when they are wrong. Admitting mistakes shows that you are human. It also builds trust and respect.

Priority #6: Build your network. Look at the organisation chart. Who are the successful managers? Who could possibly be of help to you? Make sure you build a network of colleagues from outside your team.

Priority #7: Be careful when giving negative feedback to experienced staff. Make sure you get the words right — ask them for their input in solving the issue or improving their performance. If you have not had some training in giving feedback, ask your manager or consult a good book.

Priority #8: Check your results. Once you have been in the role for nine months, complete a 360 degree profile. As well as getting feedback from your own manager and perhaps informal feedback from others, you need to get an accurate view of how you are performing as a manager. If your organisation does not have a 360 process, see the link at the end of this letter.

Priority #9: Find a mentor. Look for a manager within your organisation whom everyone respects. Build a relationship with that person. Over time, this friendship should turn into a mentoring relationship. Mentoring takes time — take yours!

One final piece of advice from an old, experienced manager. You are young, energetic and have great potential to move up the corporate ladder. The only thing you lack is experience. In twelve months time, make sure that your manager will be telling his / her colleagues "Yes, that was a great decision I made promoting (put your name here …………….). What a fabulous young leader he / she is."

How factoring and invoice finance can help your business

How Factoring and Invoice Finance can help your Business

It goes by a few different names — invoice financing, accounts receivables financing, business factoring, or just factoring — but what factoring services do is provide a much-needed injection of cash for business owners in a financial pinch. While loans and lines of credit can be difficult for some businesses to obtain, invoice financing is an option available to just about any business that invoices their customers for goods or services provided.

While factors, or companies that provide factoring services, are far from charities, they do provide an affordable alternative to costly merchant cash advances, and still provide the same end-result services as credit card cash advances do — fast access to funding for your business.

Now, while invoice financing does provide quick access to money for your business, that is not the only benefit of using these funding services. Because of the way that invoice financing works, namely, that you essentially ‘sell’ your unpaid invoices to a factoring company, you can alleviate the headaches and employee payroll associated with collecting on, and managing, your unpaid invoices. In fact, some business owners prefer to outsource their accounts receivables management through factors. While factoring companies do charge a fee, or a discount rate, for each invoice that they process and collect on, at an average of 3%-5% per invoice, for some business owners, these small costs are well-worth the investment for accounting purposes alone.

Invoice financing is a good option for business owners who need cash quickly, and for those who want to outsource their invoice-collection tasks. While factoring certainly is not a no-cost business service, it is one of the most affordable options available to those who need access to business funding and do not have the option to take out a business loan or have established business credit.

How to make money during summer without breaking a sweat

How to Make Money during Summer without Breaking a Sweat

Are you wondering about how to make money during summer without succumbing to the scorching heat? There are a lot of activities you can undertake without you having to run to and fro, working up a sweat and draining your energy.

Summer is a good season for people who have a lot of time in their hands and a good deal of techie know-how. If you are the type of person who enjoys messing around with your computer, you can actually channel something you enjoy into any number of money making ventures this summer without breaking into a sweat.

There are hundreds of thousands of earning opportunities that you can find on the Internet, and you can take advantages of these opportunities to earn some bucks. The good thing about it is that you can make money doing what you do best, wherever you are, as long as you have your computer with you. So you can sit in an air-conditioned room without having to worry about sweating out the season doing any manner of small odd jobs that to make money.

If you are a whiz at creating websites, there are many companies in your area who would be interested in hiring someone to maintain or create their websites for them. Having the advantage of youth and a lot of fresh ideas will only make you more in demand. There are also tons of online jobs such as data entry, writing jobs, and paid surveys that you can join to make extra money without sweating too much this season.

Implementing photo id badges for improved security

Implementing Photo Id Badges For Improved Security

Photo ID systems have some very good points. They can provide positive identification and it is quite easy to create a system that clearly presents a variety of information quickly and cleanly. They come in a wide variety of costs and capabilities, from simple plastic badges that cost pennies each and with nothing but ink on them to badges costing many dollars with encoded magnetic keys imbedded.

Photo ID systems have some weaknesses as well. It is extremely easy for badges to be lost or otherwise get out of control, and it is a constant struggle to ensure that pictures are actually checked instead of glanced at.

The first part of the process as someone goes to get a badge is to gather the information. Having the person who will get the badge to fill out a form is the usual procedure. Next, the picture must be taken and the data entered into the database of the system that creates the badge. Then the printer spits out a new badge and the newly authorized person is given the quick class on taking care of the badge.

In the specific case of a school, this implies children will be likely to go through the process, which will tend to be more awkward as a result. Ensuring that all personnel to be badged have their paperwork and it is correctly filled out will be more difficult, as will scheduling times for pictures to be taken that will result in minimal disruption. It is also quite possible that lost badges will occur more often.

Badges should, at a minimum, show a picture and an identification number. It is highly recommended that the badges show an expiration date and might show a name or other information depending on the requirements and privacy concerns. Badges should be designed to be easy to identify and classify, but difficult to copy.

The most common systems have a computer that is physically isolated, that it, it is not part of a network or on the internet. This is to protect the database from compromise. It has a camera and badge printer attached. The worker using the system should be experienced enough to troubleshoot the process as heavy use will tend to cause each system to develop some quirks. The database is important for several reasons, not least to allow the supervisors to track how many badges have been issued and how many are no longer accounted for.

Loss of a percentage of the badges to be determined by those planning the system would be grounds to recall and replace all badges with a new design. The most common systems cost a few thousand dollars and will allow users to create new badges using common graphics programs or power point. It is also good to secure a supply of all needed components, as I have found occasional lag time between ordering some needed supply and arrival, though I was rather out of the way at the time. Normally, the specialized badge printer will be bundled with a suitable program, though a computer and camera will seldom come with the system. While you may be tempted to scrounge an old computer, remember that the database is going to grow and it is important not to have a machine that will be unable to do the job, whether immediately or six months later.

How to answer more calls with 0845 numbers

How To Answer More Calls With 0845 Numbers

Missing phone calls can mean missing out on business and in an era where every phone call counts, many companies are turning to 0845 numbers (http://www.windsor-telecom.co.uk/0845-numbers) to enable them to answer more calls.

0845 numbers are popular with large and small companies from all sectors, including insurance firms like Direct Line, travel companies like Virgin Atlantic, national banks like Lloyds TSB and countless small and medium sized businesses throughout the country.

0845 numbers enable companies to smarten up the way they deal with callers, ensuring that they answer more calls and become more efficient. This means they can take more enquiries — enhancing their customer services, and make more money from their sales calls.

Here are 5 ways 0845 numbers can help you answer more calls.

1. Calls to 0845 numbers can be re-routed to alternative landlines/mobiles instantly. This is particularly useful for out of hours calls or in an emergency, such as landline failure. Some 0845 number suppliers actually enable you to do this online at the touch of a button or over the phone.

2. 0845 numbers (http://www.windsor-telecom.co.uk/0845-numbers) can be combined with a Voicemail to Email service. This allows companies to have all their voicemails sent to a nominated email address of their choice. This means that all important messages can be responded to rapidly and they can easily be forwarded to the appropriate person or department to deal with.

3. 0845 numbers are non-geographic telephone numbers meaning that the location of a business is not made explicit by the dialling code of their number alone. This can help them to attract more calls as they won’t be judged on their location.

4. Businesses can handpick a highly memorable 0845 number to enable their potential customers to remember their phone number before their competitors. E.g. 0845 111 2222

5. If a business moves premises or relocates, 0845 numbers can easily move it. This avoids the need to change telephone numbers, office stationery, letterheads etc .and avoids confusing customers.

The cost to set-up and run 0845 numbers (http://www.windsor-telecom.co.uk/0845-numbers) varies.

Many providers charge businesses for the calls they receive on their 0845 numbers — however, if you’re savvy you’ll be able to find the supplier on the market that offers unlimited inbound calls to 0845 numbers (http://www.windsor-telecom.co.uk/0845-numbers) for just a small monthly fee.