November, 2007

Small Business Maxim: Have a Passion. | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Small Business Maxim: Have a Passion. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 20, 2007. When you talk about business, small business or even micro business, eventually the talk always turn to making money. How to make it, how to make some more and how

2007 208

Organizing a Conference

Laughing all the Way to Work

[Click to enlarge image - page 1] Organizing a conference can be fun! Really! I enjoy it. The only problem is, you usually have to organize the conference and still do all your other work and that makes for some pretty hectic days leading up to the event. You definitely need to be organized!

2007 130

Cubicle Etiquette 101

Professional Assistant Blog

Do you find that your colleagues are hovering around you when you're on the phone? Do you feel that you are not being respected when you are doing something urgent and people just barge in on you? If you work in a cubicle, here are some

The Interrupting Co-Worker

On The Job

I recently received a letter from an employee (I’ll call her Barbara) who was fed up with a man (I’ll call him Jason) in her office who constantly interrupted her. The interrupter was nice, the person said, but she was going to strangle him one of these days. “He He just starts talking, really loudly, when I’m on the phone,” Barbara says. And, the other day he did the same thing when I was in the middle of a conversation with someone else.

2007 109

Benefits, Not Features is what sells! | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Benefits, Not Features is what sells! by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 20, 2007. Many worries in a small business are centered about sales and the need to earn money in order to pay for over-heads like rent, wages and so on

2007 206

New Small Business Startup Idea: Virtual Import/Export Assistant.

The Small Business Blog

New Small Business Startup Idea: Virtual Import/Export Assistant. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 13, 2007. You may speak more languages and have market segment knowledge about a certain product or service. That is a great basis for a small

2007 199

Book Review: Duct Tape Marketing by John Jantsch | THE SMALL.

The Small Business Blog

Book Review: Duct Tape Marketing by John Jantsch. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 02, 2007. You know when you read something and you think “ I knew that!” or “Why didn't I think of that before?” – but you never consciously thought about it

2007 199

More Trending

Q & A: What questions should I ask my accountant before I start my.

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What questions should I ask my accountant before I start my business? by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 01, 2007. Choosing an accountant/CPA is probably one of the most important decisions to get right, because you are unlikely to have an

2007 194

WinWeb's Free Online Accounting Software Now With Cost Centre.

The Small Business Blog

WinWeb's Free Online Accounting Software Now With Cost Centre Functionality. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 19, 2007. WinWeb has just updated their OnlineOffice accounting module, to include cost centre functionality

2007 130

Free Press Release Distribution for Small Business. | THE SMALL.

The Small Business Blog

Free Press Release Distribution for Small Business. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 13, 2007. When you sign up to WinWeb's free LiveNet – still in public beta – you can also use our useful and FREE RSS Press Release service

2007 130

WinWeb's Free Accounting Software For Every Small Business. | THE.

The Small Business Blog

WinWeb's Free Accounting Software For Every Small Business. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 11, 2007. With our recent launch of OnlineOffice 4, we have kept our promise to supply our online accounting software to every small business and

2007 130

Apple – the customer support nightmare – Part II: The Criminal.

The Small Business Blog

Apple – the customer support nightmare – Part II: The Criminal Investigation. by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 10, 2007. As my readers will know I wrote a post last week about my customer support nightmare with Apple after sales support

2007 130

Apple – a customer support nightmare! | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Apple – a customer support nightmare! by Stefan Töpfer on Nov 07, 2007. A few years ago I decided to change over to Apple computers from Windows based computers and up until now it seemed the right decision

2007 130

Attend a Job Fair Like You Mean It

On The Job

Be honest: The last time you went to a job fair, did you do more than fill out a couple of applications or toss your resume at a recruiter? Did you rehearse your qualifications while standing in line to meet employers or did you work the Sudoku puzzle in the local newspaper? Did you use the event as a chance to network with everyone, or stand alone and drink free coffee? The sad truth is that many of those attending job fairs blow it.

2007 100

How to ensure confidentiality

Laughing all the Way to Work

Most of us work in a cubicle and it is easy when people come by to see what is on your computer screen or on your desk. Some things you work on are confidential and are not for everyone's eyes (including your co-workers). Here are some simple steps to ensure confidentiality: File documents, don't leave them lying around Turn paper over on your desk Don’t talk to others about confidential information Clear screen and lock computer Always lock your computer when you leave your desk area!

2007 100

Workplace Affairs Still Cause Problems

On The Job

I have written about workplace romance before , but it appears SOME people are not paying attention. Take the case of the American Red Cross recently dumping President and CEO Mark W. Everson after it was learned he'd had an affair with a female subordinate. This kind of hanky-panky has been going on in the workplace since, well, forever, but there is a lot less tolerance of on-the-job romance in some cases.

2007 100

Reheating Catfish in the Microwave

On The Job

I've raced around the Web today, trying to find items for this Tidbit Tuesday. I figure I've burned off at least one of the pieces of pecan pie that I shoved into my face over the holiday (is this what is known as wishful thinking?).

2007 100

I'm in Oprah's Magazine!

On The Job

Just wanted to tell you to keep your eyes peeled for the January issue of "O", The Oprah Magazine , because I'm in it! I was interviewed about how to make your career better, and I'm very excited that I not only was included, but my book, "45 Things You Do That Drive Your Boss Crazy" was mentioned.

2007 100

Learning From a Demotion

On The Job

Remember the time as a child when you tripped and fell in front of all your classmates? You probably thought you would die of embarrassment, right? Well, of course you didn’t, and somehow you managed to pick yourself up and survive the incident. But what happens when as an adult, you trip and fall again? Only this time it’s not you physically stumbling and sprawling in front of others, it’s the kind of tumble that is often more damaging emotionally and spiritually.

2007 100

The Importance of the To-Do List

Laughing all the Way to Work

"A former boss of mine got me started using the To-Do list some time ago and even though I wasn’t too keen on doing it in the beginning I quickly realized its value. Every time we had a departmental meeting we would bring our To-Do list so she knew exactly what was “on our plate”. With the To-Do list we now had a clear and concise way to gauge if we were able to take on new projects and how many we could handle.

2007 100

Did I send that out like that?

Laughing all the Way to Work

Because email is so quick to SEND it is very important to read it over and proof it. I make the most errors in email when I go back and change a sentence, add something, take something out and if I am not careful it goes out with errors: The sentence structure is wrong. The tense is not right. It doesn't make sense anymore! If you have gone back and made changes to an email, read it over once again before pressing SEND to make sure it still says what you want it to say.

2007 100

Using Your Contact Cards as a Secretarial Manual

Laughing all the Way to Work

I have found using my contact cards for secretarial information has been very helpful. I have my regular contact list where I store contact information, phone numbers etc. and then I have created a subfolder called "Secretarial Manual". Whenever I find out how to do something I create a new contact card and put the information in it. To create a subfolder in Contacts: Right click on Contacts and pick New Folder. Or from your Toolbar when you are in Contacts, choose File, New, Folder.

2007 100

Metadata: What is it and why is it important for the assistant to know about it?

Laughing all the Way to Work

I overheard some assistants talking in the gym the other day. They were saying their IT person was bugging them about metadata. They concluded they were not going to worry about it and would press the Delete button on the IT Department’s email. They reasoned if they didn’t understand it, there was nothing they had to do about it. What is Metadata and should we be concerned? Metadata has been defined as "data about data".

2007 100

Workers Fighting Serious Health Issues Need Support of Co-Workers, Bosses

On The Job

I've done hundreds and hundreds of interviews over more than 20 years as a journalist, but the ones that I remember most are with people who are facing enormous challenges in their lives, but who somehow manage to get up every day and go to work. But let me be clear here: I'm not just talking about the person who puts up with annoying co-workers or bully bosses.

2007 100

Winter Blues

Laughing all the Way to Work

This is not my favourite time of year. Between adjusting to the time change, going home in the dark and the colder temperatures (especially up here in Canada Brrr!) it can be a pretty dreary time. I am finding I am tired and that is being reflected at work. It is hard to get motivated to do the filing (which is a boring but necessary part of our job), but even more so at this time of year. What can we do to get our energy levels up? Some things I have found helpful are: Get plenty of rest.

2007 100

Road Warriors, Networkers and Wordsmiths

On The Job

On this Thanksgiving Tidbit Tuesday (I seem to have an abundance of alliteration), lets consider the habit of saying "thank you." Don't be a turkey: According to HotJobs, it's a good idea to send a thank-you note after a job interview , although opinions vary as to the impact on getting the position. One senior manager said he had yet to see a thank-you note from a candidate really being the deciding factor in being offered a job, but concluded that every little bit helps.

2007 100

Chatty People: Getting Back to Business!

Laughing all the Way to Work

You are trying to get an important project completed and a co-worker comes along wanting to chat. We have all experienced this at some time or another. How can you handle it and continue to have good working relationships with your co-workers? There is always going to be some social interaction and joking with each other - it can help to relieve some of the stress of a busy office.

2007 100

First things first:What to do first when you get in in the morning?

Laughing all the Way to Work

There are so many things we need to check when we first come into work in the morning: voicemail, email, regular mail and faxes and couriers. What should we do first? I have been finding it is important to check my voicemail first thing. Email at least can be flagged as urgent, but your voicemail you have no idea until you listen to it how important it is, so best to check that first. Then I check my email.

2007 100

Do you have a job or a career?

Laughing all the Way to Work

The Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary defines Career as “the job or series of jobs that you do during your working life, especially if you continue to get better jobs and earn more money.”. A Job is defined as “.the the regular work which a person does to earn money”. [1] 1] Some questions you can ask yourself are: Do you decide on a job because of availability, money or a wise career choice? Hopefully the money and wise career choice will go together.

2007 100

Use Time Off for Job Reflection

On The Job

Probably the last thing you want to do on your Thanksgiving break is think about work. And yet it intrudes into your thoughts, whether you want it to or not. You wonder how many email messages are piling up; how the boss will receive the report you left; and whether you're still in the running for that promotion. OK, you’re going to think about work whether you want to or not. So why not channel that mindset into something productive?

2007 100

You may feel like it, but don't!

Laughing all the Way to Work

As an assistant I have always been amazed when someone has called me wanting to speak to my boss and then has been rude on the phone. The Administrative Assistant is typically the door you have to go through to get to the boss. I would not recommend using your position to make things difficult for someone trying to reach your professional, but it just has never made sense to me when people have done that. So how should you handle the situation? Be professional.

2007 100

Email tip for mass email mailing

Laughing all the Way to Work

If you are sending a large mailing to contacts from different companies, a good idea is to put their email addresses in the b.c.c. section and then send it. That way nobody will see who else is getting the email or have access to their email address. This is particularly important in a business mass email mailing. I had a personal experience where I copied many of my friends and acquaintances on an email.

2007 100

Nuts, Bolts & Jolts by Richard A. Moran: BOOK REVIEW

Laughing all the Way to Work

Th is is just the neatest book! Richard Moran has a saying for just about everything to do with your career, the boss, general life at the office and even business travel. It is fun to read and humorous, but also has some great advice. It is written for both the employee and the boss. He has captured office life to a tee with his sayings. He obviously has been around and knows what he is talking about. I used this quote for my thoughts for the day last week, but it is worth repeating.

2007 100

Blue, black or red ink? Which is better?

Laughing all the Way to Work

A good tip for signing a document is to sign it in blue ink. If you sign in black it is difficult to tell which is the original and which is the photocopy. I would never recommend signing a document in red ink. I prefer it if my boss uses blue ink to make revisions to a document. I find I can notice the changes better than with black ink. I don't like revisions done in red ink as I can't see red very well, but that is a personal choice for me, others may prefer it.

2007 100

Return to Sender: Who do you return it to?

Laughing all the Way to Work

Most business envelopes have their logo and business address pre-printed on the envelope, but if you are in a large organization with many people sending letters out every day, how will your Mailroom staff know who to give the envelope to if it comes back Return to Sender? A good tip is to put your boss's initials under the logo and address on the envelope. Then if the envelope is returned your Mailroom will know who sent it and can return it to the proper person.

2007 100

Another Outlook Calendar Tip

Laughing all the Way to Work

Here is a good tip if someone calls you wanting to check your boss's availability on multiple dates in the next month or so. Instead of going to each date one at a time you can view them all at once. Here's how: Go to your calendar "Day" view. Holding down the Ctrl key, and selecting from the small calendar (the one that shows the full month), click on the dates you want to look at i.e. January 5, 9, February 5, 7. (To

2007 100

Licking Envelopes May be Hazardous to Your Health?

Laughing all the Way to Work

There are a few urban legends out there about licking envelopes. The first one I heard was the one about someone licking an envelope that was laced with cyanide on the glue and the person died from it. The second legend is the one about the woman who licked the envelope and her doctor ends up pulling out a live cockroach from her tongue. Of course, these have all been verified as urban legends and are not true. Are there real health risks to licking envelopes?

2007 100