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Posts Tagged ‘small business’

Keeping technology working, so you can too!

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Can anyone name a small business, or any business for that matter, that doesn’t rely upon technology for day to day operations? Computers play such an integrated role in our lives. Much like automobiles, it is important to maintain your computers and run periodic checks on them to avoid failure.

When doing routine system maintenance, there are several different areas of the computer that should be checked for potential problems. The operating system itself, installed software, updates and patches, anti-virus definitions, the network settings, the system fans, dust levels, hard disk drives, backups, and external devices! Some are more important than others. For example, if your hard drive fails, you could face some very costly data recovery issues. Dust is another one, dust and heat are the biggest killers of electronic components. A competent computer repair firm will have a checklist of items that a technician will run through, the hard drive and dust levels being just one of those, to ensure optimal performance.

Not to get stuck on the automobile analogy, but it’s so easy to do comparisons between that and computer repair. If you forget to change your oil, over time your engine suffers. If you go long enough, eventually your engine will fail. Computer maintenance is the same way. A lot of clients have come to us with failed hard drives. Sometimes we can get their data off pretty easily and recover their systems. In the worst cases, those hard drives need to be sent off to a lab where data recovery becomes extremely costly. Client with crashed hard drives are usually surprised when we tell them that the crash could have been avoided. There are warning signs that most equipment will give when things go bad, and the signs usually begin a while before the actual crash takes place. For hard drives, it could be slow performance, errors while working, errors in system logs, or even clicking or grinding sounds. Most computer fans make noises too when they are about to fail.

Our experts service and repair machines and are experienced in the different ways you can identify computer problems. If you hire a team of professionals that know how to keep your computers working, and have them come out monthly for a quick checkup, you too will be able to keep working. For most people, computer failures usually happen at the worst possible time. Like, right before an important project deadline. If your computer suddenly crashes or the network is not working you may lose work and income. All of this could be avoided with just a couple hours of preventative maintenance per month.


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Grow Your Business NOW Through Effective Business Networking

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Growing your business in this tough economy can present overwhelming challenges, especially if your approach relies on outdated marketing techniques. Despite economic indicators showing signs of rebound, the recovery is projected to be slow and difficult, and it appears that all of us are in the same boat. We will face increasing competition, reduced sales, and a shrinking number of prospective leads for some time to come.

With less income and reduced savings, it is very important for you to take a detailed look at how your marketing budget is being distributed. It is important to make every cent count in order to generate the biggest possible bang for the buck. While very few marketing opportunities can match the high impact and low cost of internet marketing, one strategy stands on a comparative level – business networking. Most business owners learn very quickly that word of mouth is one of the highest impact, lowest cost, and most effective forms of marketing available. Unfortunately, most do not know how to employ effective techniques to capitalize on this fact.

You want to put yourself in front of qualified prospects, and these days there are several hundred business networking opportunities available in the Phoenix, Arizona area alone. The choices are daunting and include dozens of business mixers, social events, leads groups, chamber of commerce events, business lunches and more each week. How can you sort through the clutter to find networking opportunities that represent the best ROI? The scope of information can quickly lead to overload, and at the end of the day you may find that you’ve invested a lot of valuable time but have gained very little result. To network effectively, you need to do more than just pass out business cards that will most likely later be thrown in the garbage.

Structured business networking offers several benefits that will help you maximize income and results in a minimal amount of time. Key features to look for in a highly effective, structured business networking event include:

  • Exclusivity for your category, where competitors are not allowed to market products to your network simultaneously and drown out the effectiveness of your message.
  • A sense of obligation between participants, where other network members are recognized or rewarded in some way for their referrals to your business.
  • An opportunity to develop relationships with participants, where other members are encouraged and provided the opportunity to learn more about, and care about, your products and services.
  • A good supply of local business and community leaders, where members have some significant impact in the community and are in a good position to serve as a strong source of unlimited referrals for your business.
  • Quality control. Your networking group should have methods in place to properly verify each member for the highest possible integrity and quality of services. Businesses that cannot be verified as offering a superior quality of service should be excluded, ensuring that businesses you refer to your friends and colleagues will do a good job for you.

Most networking opportunities out there today fall short in at least one, or more, of these critical areas. Are you wasting valuable time and money with a buck-shot approach to marketing, instead of focusing your efforts to achieve greater results with less cost? As you can imagine, establishing your business as a quality services provider in a network of well-connected community leaders who are dedicated to your products and services can work wonders for your income potential. You will find yourself, over time, with a team of highly effective sales professionals working together to help you achieve success.

Tempe Professionals LeTip is one such structured business networking event and provides high quality business networking facilities for members based primarily in Ahwatukee, Chandler, Phoenix and Tempe. Member attendance is required, only one participant per business category is allowed, and members are expected to provide tips and remain loyal to their base. Relationships are formed amongst members through frequent, structured meetings.

There are other groups out there similar to Tempe Professionals that provide structured, effective networking. Chapters are usually established to focus efforts on a particular region, such as Scottsdale, the west valley, and more. If you find that the Tempe Professionals meeting area (in Chandler) is far away from your business location, contact me and I can help put you in touch with a similar chapter located near you.

 

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