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Some Great Approaches To Solving A Range Of Business Problems

If you run a business, something that you are going to have to get used to fast is having a range of problems getting in your way. Your business is only ever going to be as successful as you can make it to the point of overcoming those problems, and for that reason, you will absolutely need to have a good sense of what you can do to try and solve any problem which might arise. You never know what kinds of issues are likely to arise, although if you carry out enough research and ask around you should be able to work it out a little. However, what you can do is ensure that you have in mind a number of approaches which you can generally take to improve things, no matter what kind of problems might actually occur. In this article, we are going to take a look at some of the best approaches to solving business problems which you should absolutely try to be aware of as best as you can.

Stepping Back

Sometimes, a change in perspective is all you really need, and often the most important way to do that is to simply step back and make sure that you are viewing the problem at hand in a reasonable and enlightened way. When you get too involved in the micro issues of a problem, it is all too easy to lose sight of the bigger picture – and that generally leads to a lack of ability to deal with that problem in the most sensible way possible. For that reason, taking the time to step back is one of the most important things you can do, and it is important to remember to do so when the going gets rough.

If you find it hard to disentangle in this way, then you might want to think about trying to get the opinions of someone else to help you do so. Family, friends and business partners should encourage you to see the bigger picture, and that is absolutely something that you will want to consider. The more that you allow yourself to step back, the more likely it is that you will be able to appreciate what your best next move is – and that is something that applies to basically any problem that you might find yourself having in business.

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Seeking Advice

It is hard to go it alone for your entire business career. You might feel that you have basically got it yourself, but nobody is an island, and you need to bear that in mind if you want your business to have as much in the way of success as possible. But knowing when to seek advice is hard in itself, and something which you need to practice and work on throughout your career if you hope for your business to be truly successful. When you do feel that it is time to seek advice, then you need to be careful about who you ask, as this will ensure that you can get the kind of advice that is actually going to work out well for you. That is something that is worth looking into itself in order to appreciate what kind of advice you should really be seeking and why.

Obviously, there are people who make their living as professional business advisors, and these are the kinds of people you might want to look to first of all. You might even decide to try and find someone who can be something of a mentor to you so that you can turn to them in times of need and discover what your best next move should be. These people are invaluable to have on your side, so it’s worth networking wherever you can for this kind of reason alone if nothing else. However, they are not the only people who can help you in those times, and you might want to also seek the advice of friends and family. You might be surprised to discover some of the great wisdom you can receive from people who don’t really know that much about business, and for that reason alone it is worth speaking to them. However you do it, you should always be on the lookout for advice from people who you feel can help you along, even if you are worried about being a little embarrassed to ask.

Technology

Technology is there for a very good reason, and that is that it is there to help you succeed and overcome a range of issues in business. That is very much the reason it exists and is developed, and it’s important to always bear in mind that business challenges can be solved with IT more often than you might think. Appreciating this, and looking to understanding when that is the case and when it is not, will help you to know how you can personally make the best use of technology in your business, and in such a way that you can expect problems ot be overcome pretty easily. So what are some of the problems that you can solve with technology which you should be aware of?

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As it happens, there are a lot of kinds of problems that technology can solve, and you would find it a good idea to be open to this possibility in many instances across the board. If you have issues with staffing, there is often something you can to improve matters by looking at what HR software you are using, and how you are using it. If you have problems with the technology itself, you will find that using tech in a different way can often be the solution. If you are having trouble with product design, marketing, website design, customer relations or analysis, technology is very often the key to improving that. As you can see, technology is very much one of the main things to look into if you want to be able to solve a range of problems in your business, so make sure that you bear that in mind as best as you can.

Watching The Competition

You might already be aware of the value of watching the competition, in that it is a great way to be able to keep sight of what your rivals are doing which you are not. You will also find it helpful to keep an eye on what they are getting wrong so that you can jump in and fill the gap which customers need filling. Of course, it is also important to look into here, when you are trying to solve any kind of big problem in your business. Whatever the nature of the problem might be, you will find that it is incredibly useful if you can look to other businesses which have had similar problems in the past. Looking at how they got through it and what they did to make it easier on themselves will help you to make the right kind of decision yourself, whether that is by learning from their good deeds or their mistakes. In either case, you can expect to find new solutions you might not have otherwise discovered, and for that reason alone it is certainly something worth looking into.

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As you can see, there are many things you can consider if you are hoping to solve a range of problems in business, and you should absolutely make sure that you are going to consider these the next time you need to find a solution.

 

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Stop Being Known As A Small Business

Being known as a small business is something that you could easily carry around with you until you run your course with your business, and you either sell it or hand it down. For some, being a small business is all that they ever want to be, and to be anything but small business, you have to be prepared to put in years of hard work. But just because you’re not a small business, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be one of the biggest either. All you have to be is big enough to have employees be making a profit of a nice amount, and for people to actually know who you are. So if this is the point that you want to get to, we’re here to help you. Here’s how we think you can stop being known as a small business, and start making your mark on the business world that you’ve been waiting to do!

Get Your Setup Sorted

So first things first, you’re going to have to think about getting your set up sorted, sot at you can have the right space to grow your business. It’s no good being somewhere that just isn’t working for you, or that wouldn’t suit an up and coming business. So all you have to do is find a property in a location that’s close to you, but a bit more upmarket than what you’re in the minute. The best place to be is where business is bustling. If you were to go somewhere crowded with business, it really wouldn’t matter. As long as it wasn’t crowded with everyone doing the same thing as you, you’re in the right place. You wouldn’t believe how easy it is to make the right connections when you’re in the right place. Then, all you have to do is make sure that you have a cool office set up, on that’s going to attract hard-working employees.

Bring New Roles To The Company

Opening up new roles within your company could be the best thing that you’ve ever done. But we know that it’s not just as easy as saying you want someone to do something, you have to think logically about it. You’ll have the added expense of paying someone’s wages, so you have to be able to bring in that money, and more through the role, if you want it to be worth it. So it could be something like a marketing person, or a product developer or anything that you think is going to suit your business down to a T, and will bring in that all important money!

The Next Big Idea

If you really want to stop being known as a small business, you’re going to have to bring in that next big idea that creates the commotion, and money that you’re looking for. A bigger business is always looking for ways to bring in more products or services, or even just to better the ones that are already there. So get creative, and get thinking about what your next big idea could be!

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Office Options – Finding the Perfect Workspace for Your Business

Whether you’re a sole trader, a business owner, or a partner in a business, you will find yourself faced with the arduous task of finding suitable premises. While there are some fantastic options available, not all of them will be suitable for your needs – or those of your employees.

Before you find yourself locked into a lease that turns out to be not worth your while, consider these five office options below:

Serviced Office

Do you want to walk into your office, meet customers, hold meetings, and not worry about a thing? A serviced office with meeting rooms for hire may be the answer. A serviced office is the same as leasing office space but with a much more convenient setup.

You get to benefit from reception services, WiFi, kitchen facilities, office furniture, and you will also have access to professional meeting rooms for that important client with whom you want to make a great impression. The best part is, these all feature in one convenient bill at the end of every month. Serviced offices can save you a lot of hassle and cost, particularly for smaller businesses on a budget.

Home Office

Technology has changed the way the world operates – including the way you do business. As a result, around 70 percent of people work from home or remotely at least once per week. Could that be your new reality? If you’re a sole trader or professional with no significant office ties, you can save money by setting up a home office. You get to enjoy a better work-life balance, cut out those tiresome commutes, and spend more time with your family.

Virtual Office

There may come a time when you’re working from home, that you realize it looks quite unprofessional. The thought of official business clients sending mail to your house may also send shivers up your spine. A virtual office can offer the best of both worlds.

You get to continue working from home, but you get to enjoy a virtual business address with mail-forwarding and call-taking facilities. Your business card says you work from a prestigious business center in the city, but your pajamas say you work from home.

Shared Space

By the end of 2017, over 1.2 million people would have shared a co-working space. Working in a shared area involves turning up at an established shared office, finding an available seat, and getting to work. You may not know anyone, they may not know you, but you share a common trait: you need a place to work.

Shared space is suitable for sole traders or creative entrepreneurs. In such areas, you can brainstorm with others, find inspiration, and get that much-needed social aspect that working from home doesn’t provide.

A Permanent Office

If you don’t like moving around a lot, would prefer not to work from home, or have a few staff members to care for, then a permanent office may be more your style. When you decide you need a new office space for you and your team, factor in your budget, the size you need, and the location. You may then like to get in touch with a commercial real estate agent to sort through your options.

Every employer and employee is going to have different needs, which is why so many workspace options exist. You can enjoy the freedom of shared space, the anonymity of virtual offices, or the comfort of working from home. You may then also like the conveniences and affordability of serviced offices with meeting room access. Whatever your needs, know there is an office type to meet them.

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The Deciding Factors Of Your Business’s Success

For those entrepreneurial spirits who are toying with the prospect of launching their own business, or perhaps already in the middle of making their concept come to life, it’s essential for all from time to time to touch base with the deciding factors that will determine your business’s success.

In business you need to allow your concept the opportunity to flourish, you need to persevere through the hard times and overcome various unpredictable obstacles, and you also need direction. To dig deeper into the elements that will determine your business’s success, read on.

Passion

Such an overused term, it could be argued that it’s beginning to lose its meaning. So let’s interpret what passion is and not confuse it with the romanticized view that people so fondly express. For instance, this may sound familiar to you, ’I knew from a young age that I always wanted to be a [insert job title here].’ If this sounds like you, good for you, you’re already well aware of what you’re passionate about and may wish to skip this part entirely. Alternatively, if you’re baffled about your passions, and why this matters when starting a business, read on.

Firstly, let’s go back to basics, what do you enjoy doing/thinking of/reading about/searching for? What are you drawn back to doing over and over again? For some, this may come quickly, for others it could take a little longer to fathom. Once you’ve found what it is you are passionate about it’s essential to apply this somehow to your business. As you’re probably familiar with the saying

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life,” Confucius once said.

A great saying, however, try not to take this too literally. What you are happy to do the majority of the time is essential, yes, but be prepared, especially in business, to deal with things you’re are not so keen on. It’s part and parcel of being a business owner until you can afford to hire people to do the parts of the business you’d instead not do. As an example, let’s say you love drawing illustrations and at the moment work self-employed, but you despise social media management and filling in your end of year tax returns. The answer to this is, join the club. We live in the real world, and not everything in business is flowers and roses. However, your passion should be there for a large part of what you’re doing, otherwise what’s the point? You’ll only find it harder to go the distance when obstacles crop up during launching, maintaining and growing your business. Which is why your passion, is a deciding factor of whether your business shall be a success or failure.

Education

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Whether you’re forming your business plan to present to investors, designing the branding for your logo, or perhaps you’re looking to study a field entirely out of the realms of any roles and businesses you ever experienced before, there is one essential aspect in business that applies to all entrepreneurs. Knowledge! The time and effort you invest in acquiring experience and intelligence around the field you are hoping to use to form a business is non-negotiable.

In an ever-changing world, no one should rest on the knowledge and experiences they already possess. Marketing, business management, HR processes, design software for new products, online accounting is adapting and improving consistently, and you need to keep abreast with what’s going, or you could risk missing opportunities and falling behind.

Keep your brain active with networking, WLU Online courses, hands-on experience, survey your competitors, seek new opportunities and stay one step ahead of other business owners to find and experiment with quicker alternative ways to simplify drawn-out business processes. As your intelligence grows, and you apply this to your business, your business will grow too.

Fear

How do you know your innovative business idea is going to work? How do you know it won’t be pushed to the side and ignored by customers? You don’t, and that’s the consistent cost of owning a business, your fear of failure. You fear will either be one of two things. Your worst enemy playing on your insecurities and which eventually leads to you stopping the business together as the pressure becomes too much. Or your fear will act as a judgment telling you something isn’t good enough, in turn, sparking your frustration or honest critique to encourage you to do better try harder and keep going. How you interpret your fear and whether you use it to your advantage or not, is a deciding factor of the life or death of your business.

Goals

A simple, effective way to get your business going in the best direction or at least some guidance is to establish where you are going. For instance, as a car mechanic, your goals might be to decide on a name for your business, register as self-employed, invest in some tools, search for a van you can purchase to become a mobile mechanic and then save up the funds to own your own garage and employ others to work with you. Any goal setting needs a timeline of some description. Without it, there’s no real urgency to get your tasks done so that you can move on to the next challenge. In doing so your business is ticking along with a purpose, whether you’re striving towards gaining a diploma in beauty therapy to work self-employed, to attain more knowledge by hiring a business mentor, or saving to invest in a bouncy castle to rent out, goals are everything in determining whether your business will succeed or not.

Knowledge and expertise practiced and progressed consistently, will help you towards success in business. Passion for parts of your business at least will be the driving force to help you persevere through the tough times. Managing your fear effectively will allow you to use this emotion to your advantage to gain the best out of your business, and prevent you from shying away from opportunities and the next challenge. Goals will give you structure, a vision for your business, a path to success, identifying what needs to get done, why it needs to be done and how you’re going to do it.

 

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Men’s Health: Essential Tips This Year

It’s a common thing for men to skip the doctor until they become sick, injure themselves or are faced with a severe health problem and many of you will postpone seeking care for a few days to see whether you feel any better. So, to keep you healthy, there are a few steps you can take today to improve your vitality and to help prevent health problems down the road. Of course, some things can’t be changed, such as family history and age, but everyday choices can have a significant impact on their current and future health.

It’s a good idea to make routine health checkups, screenings, and dental exams and stick to them. Just because you’re healthy doesn’t mean you’re immune to everything and you never know what could be going on without you seeing symptoms. Going to your doctor for regular checkups could save your life, and by keeping up with these appointments, your doctor can make sure you stay up-to-date with immunizations and essential preventive screenings or new treatments that could be beneficial to you such as testosterone therapy. It also gives you the opportunity to talk about any health concerns or changes you might have noticed. Make sure to speak with your doctor about your family medical history and find out which screenings you might need. Ask about Body mass index (BMI), Cholesterol, Blood pressure, Certain cancers depending on risk factors, including your age and family history (e.g., lung, colorectal, prostate, skin), Diabetes/blood glucose level, depression and sexually transmitted diseases.

Eat a Healthy Diet

Eating a diet that’s low in fat, cholesterol, and salt, and packed with fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and fibre can help improve to your health, prevent heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Get moving

Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. Walking, jogging, swimming and mowing the lawn all count. Start slowly if you aren’t ordinarily active then gradually build up. Research shows that a few short bursts of physical activity, as little as 10 minutes of intense activity several times a day can help you improve your health.

Lose The Gut

Maintaining a healthy weight is essential. Excess weight, especially around the waist and carrying too much body fat forces your heart to work harder and increases your chances of heart disease and stroke.

Drink Alcohol In Moderation

If you drink alcohol, try to limit your consumption to no more than two drinks per day.

Avoid Tobacco

Tobacco smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals and is a well-known cause of cancer. Smoking also increases your chances of high blood pressure, heart disease, lung problems, and other health problems. Chewing tobacco is no safer either, not only is chewing tobacco a known cause of cancer (a carcinogen); it also contributes to gum disease and tooth loss and may be linked to fertility problems. If you are a smoker, then talk to your doctor about ways to quit. Nicotine replacement therapy products, today often include self-help programs too which can be really useful and effective.

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Taking A Course In PKI

PKI stands for Public Key Infrastructure and there are many benefits associated with deploying this at your business. Not only will you be able to increase the levels of security and privacy at your business, but you will also ensure the non-repudiation of transactions and you can decrease the risk of communications being tampered with by a significant degree. It is not hard to see why so many companies are embracing PKI. However, in order to implement this type of infrastructure, you will need to take PKI training.

Whether you are an IT professional who works for numerous companies and wants to expand their offering, or you simply work in-house for a firm that wants to take advantage of PKI, the ‘PKI – Implement and Manage’ course is an advisable option. This is one of the most recognized and respected forms of PKI training. You will benefit from IT security training and accreditation that is recognized all over the world, which will not only look great on your CV but will help you secure more jobs and make more money.

There are many IT security courses available nowadays, however, the PKI Implement and Manage course is considered the industry standard and is now pretty much essential for anyone that wants to make it in this sector. Not only will you understand PKI in a more in-depth manner, but also you will learn about the difficulties and problems surrounding the implementation of it. You will also discover how to maintain a variety of PKI solutions and you will get practical hands-on experience that could prove to be extremely valuable. The best security training providers also give you some real-life examples to look at, i.e. attacks that have been in the news as of late, so you can see how PKI works in the real world.

As mentioned earlier, this is designed for a whole host of different security professionals. If you want to advance in the world of IT security this is a great course to take. Check this website for more details about the other sorts of services IT companies provide and how this can fit in. Aside from this, everyone from internal auditors to CIOs will find this course of value to their company. If you are involved in PKI decision making, securing e-commerce, implementing e-commerce and dealing with any other Internet applications, you will find great value in taking this course and getting the subsequent accreditation.

Aside from the fact that this course is held in high regard and is viewed as the best certification for the industry, another reason why it is so popular is that the syllabus is extensive and covers all angles. This includes certificate authorities, such as CA hierarchies and certificate policies, to practical uses for encryption and associated issues, such as attacks on encryption and digitally signing PDFS, to basic cryptography and much, much more.

Hopefully, you now have a much better understanding regarding PKI training, who it is designed for, and how it can benefit you. Once the course is completed you will not only have a thorough understanding of all the theoretical aspects of Public Key Infrastructure, but you will have hands-on experience of using and implementing such solutions, which will, of course, be of huge value to you in the future.

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How Your Workplace Can Improve The Productivity Of Your Team

What makes your business successful? It’s not just your own incredible acumen or the unique selling proposition of your product or service. It’s how well you’re able to keep your team motivated and productive. Having an excellent company culture, great working relationships, and a streamlined approach to teamwork and delegation aren’t the only things that can affect that productivity. Your office can, too, and here are a few ways to tap into its potential.

Invest in a bright, energetic setting

Light, color, and aesthetic affect our mood and our energy levels much more than we might realize. Simply being surrounded by the right colors in a well-lit office can help us feel a lot more engaged a motivated. Investing in good lighting that keeps the office bright and clean looking, as opposed to the dull glow of fluorescent, which has been proven to have a net negative effect on both productivity and motivation in the workplace.

Keep it clean and pleasant

You want your employees to be engaged with their work, to take ownership and pride in their place in the team. To achieve that, you have to ensure that the office is somewhere they’re relatively happy to be. If it’s in a state of disrepair and rarely cleaned, it’s to feel anything but aversion towards it. Keeping the office clean is essential for creating a positive space. What’s more, it’s hard to be productive when you have heaps of boxes and papers blocking the walking routes throughout the workspace.

Make sure it’s safe and comfortable

You want employees to invest their energy into their work, so you need to be willing to invest in them. Particularly, you have to ensure you take your responsibility for their health and safety seriously. Ensuring the workspace is fit for work, with hard-wearing safe surfaces like epoxy flooring that mitigates the risk of slips, trips, and falls is one example. As is investing in ergonomic furniture that can prevent from developing back pain, shoulder pain, and all the other aches that are so common in the office environment. Both lighting and cleanliness play a crucial part in maintaining that safe workspace, too.

Have a designated break room

It has been shown that taking breaks at your own desk is bad for both your breaks and your work. Simply put, when you’re stuck in your work zone, it’s too easy to get stuck in your work brain. As a result, breaks aren’t as refreshing as they might be. Without a refreshing break, productivity decreases significantly after about 60% of the way through the day. That’s why some sort of separate break room that allows the team to get away from their workstations is crucial to their overall productivity.

Hopefully, the tips above make it clear that the workplace has a lot more to do with the work culture than many realize. Is it time to look back on your office and think about how it can be used as an asset, not just a place?

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Choosing An OS For App Development

An increasing number of companies are having mobile applications developed nowadays. It is not difficult to see why, especially when you take into account the growing dominance of mobile Internet usage and the fact that apps offer something different compared to what we have seen before.

When it comes to app development, there is a lot that needs to be considered. One of the key decisions is determining what smartphone OS to use for easy development. From Android to iOS, to windows, there are many different options to choose from. In this post, we will give you a helping hand when it comes to choosing the right OS. So, keep on reading to find out everything you need to know…

Firstly, it is imperative to establish that there is no right or wrong answer when it comes to selecting an OS. Ease of development is just one thing you must consider. For instance, another important factor is what OS is going to be the best in regards to reaching your target audience. iOS app development services are advisable for those with sheer reach in mind, with Android coming in at a close second. Windows and Blackberry have small audiences, yet the demographics may be more suited to your target consumer base. For example, both platforms have a very strong penetration in law, financial services, and healthcare markets. Therefore, this is something you need to take into account. After all, you could have a fantastic app developed, but if it’s not reaching anyone, what’s the point?

One of the biggest issues facing app developers is the fact that there is no time to waste in the current market. Companies want applications as quickly as possible. Demand is on the increase and businesses know that every day they waste without an app is a day they are falling behind their competition. This is why ease of development is so important, as it offers the platform for quick delivery of apps.

One of the main differences between OS and the way apps are developed is the programming languages that are used. This is a factor you really have to think about when determining what OS is going to be the easiest for you. For iOS, the programming language is written in Objective-C, which is a small and strict superset language of C. if you have worked on C and C+, this is definitely the right OS for you. On the other hand, Android apps are scripted in Java programming language. If this is something you are proficient in, then Android is the option for you.

Nonetheless, if you want an application that is going to run on Apple and Android smartphones you are going to have to embrace cross-platform compatibility to achieve this. You cannot run Java on an iPhone and vice versa. However, there are lots of development platforms and new tool kits available to help you achieve your goal of creating something that is suited to a number of different platforms.

A lot of developers will agree that when it comes to creating simple applications easily it is better to use iOS. This is because developers can easily gain access to hardware devices, such as camera and sensor, via the use of a series of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). This is not as easy when making use of Android.

There is much more to take into consideration when choosing the right OS platform for you. You also need to think about the cost of platform development, multi-touch capability, database access, the end user experience and of course the development tools. For example, when it comes to corporate app creation, iOS is at a disadvantage. There is a lack of xml parsing and thus it is difficult to create an app that leverages external xml-based data repositories. In this instance, it would be quicker to develop an app for Windows or Android.

When you take all of the points into consideration it is easy to see that there is no correct answer when it comes to determining the best OS in terms of software development. Instead, you need to consider your unique requirements and choose the system that is going to best match them.

 

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s It Time To Make The Sale? Top Tips To Embrace Each Opportunity

When you start your own business, it can often be a great thing for you personally as well as in the business world. There is no doubt that it is overwhelming to step out into the world of business with your idea, but once you get into the swing of things, work on your business plan, you can start to make it your reality and feel proud of yourself for what you have achieved. One of the biggest factors is making the sales and keeping the business going, so here are some of the top tips to help you embrace every opportunity.

Sales management

Sometimes managing the sale can be a lot harder than you think. Customers want to feel valued and special, and that just isn’t through the sale process, but also at the beginning when they are just making that first initial inquiry. So it might be worth considering your sales collateral management system that you have in place. Doing this can help you stay on the course of the sale process and for you to manage it effectively. Managing the expectations of your business and also the customer at the same time, allowing you a smooth process for all involved.

Prospecting and making it happen

Prospecting can be a great way to boost your sales opportunities and to make it happen for your business. Some people can find prospecting a little off-putting, but a general sales call out using an email option can be effective when done right. These people that you are prospecting are not going to be complete strangers to your business, they may have already made an inquiry and just not got to the point of ordering a service or product. This is where you can come in and maximize the opportunity that is there.

Keeping in touch with the customers

Keeping in touch with customers can seem like it should be a normal part of your day, but actually people can fail to do this successful. Customers want to feel valued, we have already mentioned this imp[octant point, and you can make them feel this way by keeping in regular contact with them/. From the start of the sales process right through to the end. This is also an excellent way to gain some repeats customer if your product or service allows for it. The regular contact after the sale could entice the customers to come back and order again and again.

Thinking outside of the box when it comes to making the deal

Finally, it is always going to be a good idea to think outside of the box when it comes to making the deal. Often doing so can mean that you may need to stack up a deal or present the figures in a different way. Some people like to physically see their savings, others like to know what the bottom line is. This can be especially important for purchases of a bigger item that costs a lot more. It is more of a considered spur chase which therefore may need you to present things in a different way.

Let’s hope this has given you some idea on how you can embrace every sales opportunity that you have.

 

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Are You Cyber Secure?

43% of all cyber attacks are targeted at small businesses; 60% of small companies go out of business within six months of an attack and only 14% of small companies to rate their ability to mitigate cyber risks and attacks as “highly effective.”

When was the last time you reviewed your security policies? What sort of systems does your company have in place and are they carefully enforced? Weak passwords cause more than half of all data breaches, but only 24% of SMEs have strict password policies in place, and of those that do, 65% of companies say they don’t actively enforce it. Your security policies need to be reviewed every few months to make sure they’re comprehensive and enforceable. You should also be on the lookout for new strategies and technologies that you can put in place to shore up vulnerable areas of the business. Several highly advanced techniques can now help to keep your business secure and help to make sure that no one is abusing your systems, meaning that your customers are protected too. According to 2018 Identity Fraud, ‘Fraud Enters a New Era of Complexity’ from Javelin Strategy & Research’, in 2017, there were 16.7 million victims of identity fraud, a record high that followed a previous record the year before and criminals are engaging in complex identity fraud schemes that are leaving record numbers of victims in their wake. The amount stolen hit $16.8 billion in 2017 as 30% of U.S. consumers were notified of a data breach, an increase of 12% from 2016.

Investing in a product like Jumio is faster and more accurate than manual KYC processes and will mean that both you and your customers are protected against theft.

Just as people regularly practice fire drills, you should do the same in case of a cybersecurity attack. During a cybersecurity drill, you should look at response timing on multiple levels, see how quickly individuals and teams respond and either thwart or mitigate a cyber attack and also how fast are you able to inform customers of the most current and accurate information.

Cyber liability insurance helps to mitigate the costs of an attack and is usually available both as a standalone policy, as well as an add-on to a business owner’s system. You can have first-party and third-party insurance, first-party coverage helps you to cover expenses when your network is hacked, or your data is stolen, and third-party coverage offers protection when a customer or partner sues you for allowing a data breach to happen.

If you are victim to an attack, you need to take everything offline as soon as possible as if someone has managed to access your data; you need to limit the amount of information they can get.

It is essential that you can quickly assess and block the entry point as you might be able to act quick enough to stop any data from being taken. But, you still need to check everything to ensure that nothing is lost.

Whether you have a large company or a small business, stealing or attempting to take someone’s data is a severe offense, so the authorities need to be informed immediately to commence an investigation. You will have to make all your systems and data available to the authorities, so they can see where any entry has occurred and hopefully trace it back to the perpetrator.

Informing your customers is essential, and you will need to prepare a statement that outlines what has happened and any potential data that has been lost. If you are not sure what data has been lost, or what details they may contain, your customers need to be aware so that they can monitor their bank accounts to see if anything suspicious has taken place. Your customers and clients will likely have a lot of questions that they want to ask. So you should also have a dedicated email or telephone line established to field such queries.

Your company will need to establish how and when your security was breached. It is also essential to ascertain whether the breach was external or internal to your company.

Some companies offer computer evidence recovery services that can help you and the authorities discover any potential evidence. They can then provide that to you so that you can see if there are any apparent suspects.

Before you put your services back online, it is essential to conduct a thorough audit of all your procedures and safeguards and even get an expert to come in and check your systems and advise on how they can be improved.

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