5 Tips for Office Holiday Party Etiquette

5 Tips for Office Holiday Party Etiquette

by Matt Harryman

Drunken businessman after office christmas partyIt’s that time again – the season of yuletide joy, beautiful lights, gift-giving, and holiday office parties. But remember that a holiday office party is still an office party. You may be having a merry time with co-workers, but it’s important to remember that you still represent the entity that signs your paycheck. Here are some valuable tips for following proper party etiquette:

Read the invitation. How awkward would it be to be the only one wearing jeans when the invitation clearly indicated a formal venue. The invitation will give you clues as to what kind of party it will be. For example, a daytime party at a public park will be more casual and family-oriented than a party that starts at 9:00 p.m. at a reception room that has been reserved for your company. The invitation will also indicate how many guests you can bring.

Stay Off Your Phone. There are a couple of reasons to leave your cell phone in your purse or pocket. For starters, it’s a party. You don’t need to be talking or texting at the same time that you are celebrating with friends. In addition, it might be tempting to take pictures or video of colleagues that may be having too good of a time. If you just can’t resist snapping a few shots, make sure that they are appropriate in nature.

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4 Tips on Hosting Productive Meetings

4 Tips on Hosting Productive Meetings

by Matt Harryman

Many people don’t like wasting time and we shouldn’t waste employees’ or our clients’ time either. So we’ve provided a few meeting tips to ensure your next meeting is not only productive but also memorable.

office systems office humor

1) Ask Yourself if The Meeting is Beneficial Before Setting It Up

How will your attendees benefit from the meeting?  Each week employees contribute over 40 hours of work and the last thing someone wants is to be pulled into a meeting that serves no benefit to assisting them accomplish their goals.   If you’re considering making a call for a meeting make sure that it’s worth their time and the company’s time.

2) Set A Clear Agenda with Goals

Okay so now that you’ve made it clear that you need a meeting spend some time creating an agenda with clear goals and expectations.  The  agenda will help your gathering go smoothly and ensure that the everything stays on topic.  Before you begin, pass out the agenda to all of the attendees and make clear your objective and purpose of the meeting.   Not only will an agenda be beneficial to the attendee it’ll also make you look like your on top of the game. Read More

Avoid Technology Disasters

Avoid Technology Disasters

by Matt Harryman

small businessWhen it comes to technology disasters, many businesses think it won’t happen to them. They believe they are too small, too big, or even too protected. Unfortunately, businesses in all of those categories have experienced technology disasters. Our Houston office technology experts want to help your business make sure you avoid these common technology disasters before they happen.

Computer Viruses

Protecting against computer viruses may seem like a given, but protection isn’t a “one size fits all.” There are many different types of viruses out there, and you need to be aware of what they are and how they can affect your systems. A virus can cause a minor annoyance to a major catastrophe. Make sure each computer in  your business system has up-to-date anti-virus software and monitor it regularly. Also be sure that each employee is cautious of how they are using the network while on your business systems. Train them to be diligent and aware of sites or emails that may be pose a threat.

Website Issues

With a large percentage of consumers on the internet, having a fully functioning website is important. Unfortunately, things don’t always go as smoothly as we hope. Once in a while websites experience some downtime here and there for a variety of reasons, but what happens when a website is down for hours at a time or, worse, days? Well, you definitely should send out apologies to current customers and expect to appear non-existent to new customers looking for you on the web. It’s really not a disaster most businesses can afford.

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10 Strategies for Working Much Smarter

10 Strategies for Working Much Smarter

by Matt Harryman

Time to work smarter on blackboardNo matter what part of the world you inhabit, all people have the same 24 hour time period to work with. Success is only measured by what happens during those hours. No entrepreneur can be a designated time keeper, but there are a few strategies that will help maximize work habits and productivity in those hours and that is something.

10 strategies for efficiency and effectiveness:

1.  Parkinson’s Law

We’ve all experienced Parkinson’s Law at some point or another in life. “If you wait until the last minute, it only takes a minute to do,” observed Cyril Northcote Parkinson. Some people even believe they work much more productively under stress, so they put it on themselves.

The law provides great leverage for efficiency: imposing shorter deadlines for a task, or scheduling an earlier meeting. Productive hustle is imperative. Rushed work will only ever be a recipe for reckless work because you’re not fully invested out of stress or panic.

2. Finding your flow

The zone is something that athletes, writers, musicians and artists all know very well. It’s the place in which creativity will take you and leave you for a while, to drown in your passion. That focus…you can’t get it anywhere else. This creativity creates a flow.

Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi has research dedicated to the focus on specific flow states that optimize an individual’s performance by finding the balance between challenge and skill. It can very easily turn into a teeter totter effect, if the task is too difficult then we will become frustrated and five up. However if the task is too easy it will be considered mundane and be ignored.

Reach high, but don’t bend yourself until you break. Find the happy medium and let your flow state reside there. Read More

STUDY: Great Customer Service = More $$$

STUDY: Great Customer Service = More $$$

by Matt Harryman

Trying to figure out how to grow your business?  Take a look at the quality of your customer service.

According to a new survey completed by American Express:

  • More than two thirds of American consumers say they’re willing to spend 14% more on average with a company that they believe delivers excellent service.
  • Nearly half of the survey’s respondents say they always tell others about good service interactions (46%), telling an average of eight people.
  • Two in five Americans (42%) say that a recommendation from a friend or family member is most likely to get them to try doing business with a new company, even more than a sale or promotion (34%) or a company’s reputation (15%).

So maybe your marketing strategy shouldn’t include hiring more sales reps but instead sharpening your relationships with current customers.  Here are a few ways you can improve your reputation with your client: Read More

7 SUPER-EFFICIENT WAYS TO JUMP-START YOUR MORNING

7 SUPER-EFFICIENT WAYS TO JUMP-START YOUR MORNING

by Matt Harryman

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 9.03.40 AMHow to have your best day ever…

“If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?” Steve Jobs suggested asking ourselves. Check out the video above for ways to make the most of your morning–and the rest of the day as well.

 

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