October, 2007

Small Business Checklist: Business Process Outsourcing | THE SMALL.

The Small Business Blog

Small Business Checklist: Business Process Outsourcing. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 18, 2007. As many of you know by know I'm a sucker for bootstrapping for small business and start-up business, like SOHO-, SME, SMB-, Micro-, Lifestyle

2007 217

Using a Bring-Forward System

Laughing all the Way to Work

The Bring-Forward System (or sometimes referred to as a BF system) might be an old term for the younger assistant, but the principle is similar to using your Tasks in Outlook: You need to have some sort of system to bring forward items that need to be handled at a future date. I have already spoken about using Tasks in Outlook, but on a recent job interview I was specifically asked if I knew how to use a bring-forward system so I thought I would write about it here.

2007 146

Tips on Handling Deadlines

Professional Assistant Blog

Do you hate deadlines? Do you feel jittery each time you receive a task that needs to be completed yesterday? There are times when people come up to me and expect things to be done right away. Apparently, everyone comes to me all at the

2007 100

When the Blues Won't Go Away

On The Job

I've written about hundreds of workplace issues over the years, but one of the subjects that brought in the most mail when I wrote about it more than a decade ago was a column on depression. In the story, I outlined some signs of depression that may be evident on the job. The mail flooded in -- not only from those who believed they recongized they were suffering from depression -- but from those who already had been diagnosed.

2007 100

Work-Life Balance 2.0 and Small Business | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Work-Life Balance 2.0 and Small Business. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 02, 2007. In the past twenty years the term “work-life balance” has come to symbolize the problem many face with increasing work pressures and the neglect of family

2007 216

Small Business Bootstrapping Techniques | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Small Business Bootstrapping Techniques. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 01, 2007. I often refer to “bootstrapping“, when I talk about small business, you may very well be asking “What the hell is bootstrapping?” To put is simply

2007 208

Q & A: What do you mean by credit control? | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What do you mean by credit control? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 14, 2007. I had the above question emailed to me over the week-end. I have written about this before here: Small Business Checklist: Getting Payed · Small Business

2007 206

More Trending

Q & A: What does “Fixed Costs” mean and why should they be as low.

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What does “Fixed Costs” mean and why should they be as low as possible in a Small Business? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 25, 2007. I'm answering three questions here, emailed to me during last week, so excuse the long headline

2007 203

Q & A: What are successful cost-cutting solutions in small.

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What are successful cost-cutting solutions in small business? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 18, 2007. How long is a string? Let me give you some pointers here, but please remember you can always do more on the cost-cutting front in any

2007 202

Q & A: I'm a Sole-Trader, how can I do my Accounts DIY ( Do-It.

The Small Business Blog

If NO – you need to find a system that allows you to record all your transactions, without having to do the “Double-Entries”, you can leave that to an bookkeeper or an accountant, in other words outsource the tricky bit

2007 201

10 minute power meeting technique. | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

10 minute power meeting technique. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 31, 2007. When you have internal meetings try to keep them short. I often see meeting in small organisations that linger on and on, often even about non – business issues

2007 200

Q & A: What Is A Sole Trader? | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What Is A Sole Trader? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 18, 2007. A sole trader is totally responsible for the small business in every aspect. You take all the profits and benefits from the small business, at the same time you are totally

2007 199

Q & A: What is “Staff Turnover” and how large or small would it be.

The Small Business Blog

Q & A: What is “Staff Turnover” and how large or small would it be for Small Business? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 26, 2007. Well, two things come to mind: Often the term “staff turnover” is used in connection with fluctuation in staff

2007 198

Managing A Small Business In A Recession | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Managing A Small Business In A Recession. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 10, 2007. Here in the UK we had the “Pre Budget Report” yesterday. The government set out it's plans to get small business owners to pay more tax, they increased capital

2007 197

Clever Marketing by Kitchen Table Business | THE SMALL BUSINESS BLOG

The Small Business Blog

Clever Marketing by Kitchen Table Business. by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 11, 2007. Shirley Jaffrey wrote me an email today, telling me her story how she started her business on a kitchen table and is now supplying the stars

2007 141

Skype + 3 = 3 Skypephone, but is it for small business? | THE.

The Small Business Blog

Skype + 3 = 3 Skypephone, but is it for small business? by Stefan Töpfer on Oct 29, 2007. I was kindly invited by 3 Network & Skype to attend the launch of the new 3 Skypephone in London today. The 3 Network and Skype have created a

2007 130

Meeting Scheduling Tip

Laughing all the Way to Work

A friend of mine gave me a tip for scheduling meetings when you are going back and forth with dates and times and haven't confirmed a date yet. She has created a table that is very easy to use and keeps everything neat and you can see at a glance where you are at with the scheduling.

2007 130

E-Mail Management by Nancy Flynn: BOOK REVIEW

Laughing all the Way to Work

Well I got the books I ordered through the IAAP website 1 and I did promise you in an earlier article that I would do a book review when I read them.

2007 130

The Office Fridge

Laughing all the Way to Work

The office fridge can be a mess Something has spilt, something's been left That plastic container has been there a year No one will open it, out of fear Expiry dates have long been ignored Drinks are lined up on the door Is it yours or is it mine? I can't remember if I brought that kind Lots of lunches there to see That one's green though - should it be?

2007 118

Making Travel Arrangements

Laughing all the Way to Work

Making travel arrangements for your boss can sometimes be stressful. It is important to ask the right questions to get them where they want to go. I remember making travel arrangements for a boss who was travelling to New York City for a meeting. I was not aware there were three main airports in New York City: JFK, LaGuardia and Newark International Airport, and I had him flying into LaGuardia but his hotel room and meeting were right across town (closer to JFK Airport)!

2007 109

Brand You: A Free Telesummit for Those Seeking to Help Their Careers

On The Job

I cannot believe it is the last Tuesday of October. When I was a kid, it seemed like time moved so slowly. I waited forever for summer break to arrive, I waited forever to get my driver’s license and I waited forever to get my ears pierced. Now that I’m older, it seems time flies much too quickly – didn’t we just celebrate the Fourth of July? Ah, well, what better way to send off the month than with these parting tidbits…. Mark your calendars: On Nov.

2007 100

Office Politics Can't Be Ignored

On The Job

As the race heats up for the presidential nomination, it’s a good time to remember that politics isn't confined to just those running for office. In fact, some of the most sophisticated politicking takes place in the workplace. Who hasn’t been on the receiving end of some on-the-job political maneuvering that would put even the most savvy national campaign strategist to shame?

2007 100

Keeping Words Together in Microsoft Word

Laughing all the Way to Work

A quick way to keep words together in a Word document is to use the Shortcut Keys. For example, I never like to split a name up in a letter i.e. Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Instead of pressing the Spacebar after ‘Mrs.’, press Shift Ctrl Spacebar and then type Smith. Mr. and Mrs. Smith will now stay together.

2007 100

Working From Home a Challenge

On The Job

There are a lot of things I don’t know for sure in this life. I don’t know if I’ll ever get to grocery shop on the moon (my second grade teacher swore to my class that we would some day), I don’t know if I’ll ever figure out how to boogie board (I nearly drowned last time and made a lifeguard fall out of his chair he was laughing so hard), and I can’t say for sure if I’ll ever understand how Billy Mays got a job selling anything (why is he always yelling?)

2007 100

Face up or Face Down?

Laughing all the Way to Work

I received some blank faxes and then got a phone call from an apologetic manager saying she was sorry for the faxes but she rarely had to send a fax and when she did she was never quite sure whether to feed the paper face up or face down. I suggested a simple solution would be to get her staff to put a label on the fax machine to indicate "Feed face up" or "Feed face down", whichever was appropriate. She was very appreciative.

2007 100

Outlook Quick Tip

Laughing all the Way to Work

Outlook has a feature that when you type an email address in the To section it remembers it and when you go to type another email address it will bring up similar choices in a drop-down, assuming they might be the one you want to use. But sometimes these are email addresses that have come back undeliverable as you had a typo in the address, or it's an old email address for someone who has since moved to another company and you don't want these old addresses to pop up.

2007 100

Locking Your Computer

Laughing all the Way to Work

I found this quick tip for locking your computer on Richard Rinyai's blogsite The Professional Assistant. Hold down the "Windows" key (located between the CTRL and ALT keys) and hit the "L" key. Your account will be locked and only people that know your password as well as any Administrator can log into it. This function will only work with Windows Professional versions." Taken from [link] (accessed October 20, 2007).

2007 100

What's in a Name?

Laughing all the Way to Work

When I am asked what I do for a living, I usually say I am an Administrative Assistant (or a Legal Assistant). As an old-timer, however, I still sometimes use the name Secretary when describing what I do. A friend of mine thinks that since our title change to Administrative Assistant our duties and workloads have increased and she longs for the day she could be a “Secretary” again.

2007 100

The Replacement Assistant (or the Floater Assistant)

Laughing all the Way to Work

We all take holidays and when we are gone someone needs to fill in for us. One of my pet peeves when I have used a replacement assistant is when I come back nothing looks the same as before I left; my toolbars no longer look the same; my Outlook has a different look; documents are saved in a way I would never think to find them again and none of the filing is done. Help! I thought putting together a few Do's and Don'ts would help.

2007 100

Birth Order: Science or Fiction?

On The Job

I once interviewed a man who had written a book on how birth order affected the way a person behaved, the careers chosen and even how punctual that person would be. When I called him, he answered on the first ring and said: "You must be a first-born.probably an only child. You're calling right on time." "Uh, Uh, no.," I said. I'm the youngest of three."

2007 100

Business Card Window Envelopes

Professional Assistant Blog

Here's an interesting envelope that I found on this website. Here are some of the benefits for it: You can place your own customized business cards in the clear window part to use as a mailer. Website hosting is to provide websites

2007 100

Undermanagement an Epidemic?

On The Job

Welcome again to this latest installment of Tidbit Tuesday, where I've rounded up the latest in career news and put it in one convenient corral for you to take a look at. As always, you little doggies should feel free to herd any good workplace tips my way. Can you tell I watched "High Noon" last night?)

2007 100

Sabotaging Your Own Career

On The Job

I've spent two decades writing about career challenges and how to get ahead. I've interviewed hundreds of experts and read thousands of pages of research material, trying to find the best information I can to help others be successful in their careers. And here's the one thing I've come to realize: Some of you simply don't want to get ahead. That's right. There are those of you in the workplace today who are afraid, for one reason or another, of success.

2007 100

Humour and Job Stress

Laughing all the Way to Work

Is there room for humour at the office? Can office humor help relieve stress in the workplace? I think so! I work in an office where laughter is the best medicine. We are extremely busy, but we have a sense of humour and that has gotten me through many stressful work situations. But I think there needs to be a balance and we need to know when to inject some humour and when to NOT. But job stress is no laughing matter.

2007 100

Commuting to Work

Laughing all the Way to Work

The Wheels on the Bus go Round and Round. I look forward to my bus commute to work each day. It is my time to wind down and read a book or just shut my eyes. At first I hated taking the bus to work. I love reading, but I suffer from motion sickness and was unable to read so I found the commute very boring and long. But I was determined to make good use of my commute and so I started to read a little bit each day until now I can read the whole 30 minutes without any motion sickness at all.

2007 100

The Little Yellow Sticky

Laughing all the Way to Work

What would we do without the yellow sticky?

2007 100

Signing on Someone's Behalf

Laughing all the Way to Work

This is the normal practice I have seen for signing on someone's behalf: Type their usual signature line, sign your name above it and handwrite ‘for’ beside their typewritten name. It is also acceptable to use ‘per’ or ‘p.p. Some Things to Consider: Have you been given authority to sign on their behalf? Does your company have a policy on what style they want used for signing for someone else? Updated March 10, 2008.

2007 100