Self-Improvement

Practice Management

Ten Strategies for Client Retention

by Bea Fields Traditional marketing strategies encourage business owners to continually grow their businesses by adding new customers. In today's competitive world of business, it is more important than ever to aim for more transactions with existing customers by using the power of customer follow-up and attention to good service. These ten tips may help you in turning your existing customers into walking billboards for your business. Spend thirty minutes each day talking with two existing clients.
Practice Management

Creative Strategies for Delivering 5-Star Customer Service

by Bea Fields Customer satisfaction is valuable, but customer loyalty is priceless. In today's competitive world of business, it is becoming more and more important to deliver customer service that is unbeatable. These ten creative strategies can support you in turning your customers into walking billboards for your business.
Technology

Five Ways to Coordinate Your Staff's Time Off Using MS Office

Coordinating your staff's busy schedules can be a challenge, especially when the people you manage have different meeting schedules, vacation plans, and requirements for time away.
Practice Management

Top Ten Strategies for Boosting Small Biz Profits

by Bea Fields No matter what stage your small business is in, one thing is for sure: money matters! If you are in a slump, the fastest way to jump-start your sales is to reach out and touch as many people as possible using your unique talents and gifts. These ten tips will guide you to maximizing profits from your small business while becoming a biz expert one day at a time. Choose your words with care.Each time you speak, you have the chance to make or break your business.
Community News

What Your Staff Needs to Know When Dealing with Clients

Following are some ideas that any business should consider when designing policies and procedures to deal with customers/clients.Clients are not transactions!While transactions are important, when we confuse transactions and customers we lose the leverage of the customer relationship.Build relationships INTO your policies & procedures!When we design an organization, we need to consider how our policies and procedures will ALLOW our employees to build client relationships.Transaction density is just as important as transaction intensity!The
A&A

The Road to Success: Growing Your Network

By Alvah Parker, Career and Business Coach"How do I grow my business through referrals?" "I was just downsized and need another job, what are your suggestions?" " I want to work in the US but I need to find a company to work for that will sponsor me. How do I find that company?" These are the questions people ask me. While each question has an array of answers, one answer that comes up for all these questions is to network. Whether you are a business owner, work in business or are starting a new career, having a network of people to support you is imperative.

Tooting Your Own Horn

By, C.J. Hayden, MCC "If he who has a thing to sell goes and whispers in a well, he won't be so apt to make the dollars as he who climbs a tree and hollers!" -- Anonymous Every day in your business, something happens that others should know. You give exceptional service to a client; you reach out to a new type of customer; you demonstrate your expertise on an important topic. Yet most of the time, the only people aware of these significant events are the individual with whom you are speaking and you.

Ten Things Small Firms Can Do to Compete

By Bruce MarcusGreat turbulence in the accounting profession, as well as in the business world itself, makes these difficult and unusual times. Public outcry against the misdeeds of a few accounting firms, corporations, investment bankers and others in government and the business community is tarring the innocent as well as the guilty. In the meantime, the loss of Arthur Andersen and the consolidation of the now Big Five can alter the competitive landscape for firms of any size.

Matching Your Values to Your Company's Values

By Alvah Parker, Parker AssociatesHow can you identify a company's values and why is it important? Your values can be defined as those activities that are most important to you. When your life is in great shape they are the things you are naturally drawn to. When you honor your values your work is effortless. If you are working in an environment, which has different values from yours, you have to work harder. Sometimes the values are just wrong for you and you feel your integrity is compromised.

How to Use Public Speaking to Attract Clients

By Steven Van Yoder When Robert Middleton moved his marketing consulting practice, Action Plan Marketing, to Palo Alto, California several years ago, he started his business from scratch. He had left his well-established client base several miles away and now had to find strategies to generate new clients.Because Middleton had always spoken to promote his business, he turned to public speaking with a vengeance. He researched local organizations whose members comprised professional business owners, his target clientele.
Practice Management

How To Improve Your Self Management Skills

You are responsible for everything that happens in your life. Learn to accept total responsibility for yourself. If you do not manage yourself, then you are letting others have control of your life. These tips will help "you" manage "you." 
Community News

Four Basic Rules For Growing Your CPA Firm

By Steve McIntyre-Smith, President, MarketingForAcountants.comIn days gone by professionals NEVER did any marketing. In fact, it wasn't even allowed in most countries until the mid 1980's, and even then, only in a very conservative and restricted manner.Once open for business one simply put a brass nameplate outside one's office, had a letterhead and business card printed, called a few Bank Managers and other contacts and the work started to flood in.

Tips To Topple Procrastination

By Karen Susman, President Karen Susman and AssociatesWe procrastinate for several reasons. We dread the action to be taken. We don’t have the information, authority or support to complete the action. We are perfectionists who can’t start a project because we might not do it perfectly. Perhaps we are addicted to the adrenaline rush of doing things last minute. Some procrastinators feel proud that they can do a good job in a small amount of time.
Community News

The Value of Trust, A Client's Perspective

By, Joe Heller, The Strategy SamuraiOne of the most challenging, if not the most difficult piece of the business development puzzle in a sale is - Trust. Trust today is truly the pivotal point of building a successful business relationship. Trust is rarely tied to a product or service but it is facilitated by the person interacting with the customer. Why is this important? Because everything depends on trust and in this day and age, trust is difficult to come by.
Practice Management

Document Your Processes - It Pays!

By James K. Boomer, MCPThere are a number of tasks we do on a frequent basis that become so routine that we take for granted that “everyone in our organization knows how to do that!” This assumption is most likely untrue. More likely, a number of employees are sitting at their desks right this moment stumped about where to begin with this new project they have been assigned. Documented processes provide a perfect starting point for new projects.The first step in documenting a process is identifying a repeatable process that is frequently used within the organization.
Community News

Good Questions Uncover Client Related Problems

In his book SPIN Selling, Neil Rackham discovered that sellers are fearful of asking problem questions while buyers welcome them. Buyers report that professionals, who ask problem questions seem to understand the business, seem to talk about valuable things and are more interesting.

Ignite Your Mental Pilot Light

by Gary Ryan BlairThat nice, warm shower which you took this morning, and the delicious meal you’ll enjoy later this evening are dependent upon a small, continuous flame called a pilot light.This seemingly insignificant stream of gas operates around the clock and is always ready to ignite your water heater, boiler, furnace or stove into action. It never takes a vacation, never makes an excuse, and is always ready to perform on demand.If the pilot light is not lit then the main burner will simply not work.
A&A

Coping with Time Pressure in an 'I Want It Now' World

by Dr. Kerry L. JohnsonJohn needed to process the paperwork on 5 more sales by noon and had another 10 issues to iron out in underwriting. He was falling behind in his client calls and couldn’t even get the standard paperwork done. His wife was getting ticked at him claiming he wasn’t the guy she married. He hadn’t spent more than 10 minutes with his kids in the last week. All this and he couldn’t even claim he was making more money. John was feeling more stressed as the week went on. It didn’t make sense. He should be able to coast a little after all these years.
Technology

Ways to Get the Most from Negotiating via Email

Every day, more and more business folks are using email to help speed up the negotiation process. This creates new conflicts and challenges the traditional ways of face to face or over the telephone negotiating. In today's Top7Business article, I'm going to cover what I've learned after negotiating several contracts that ranged into the millions of dollars over the lifetime of these agreements, using Email as my primary communication method: The most important strategy, is to know WHEN to use Email, and WHEN to pick up the phone or arrange a face to face negotiation.
Technology

Adding a Wrap Text Shortcut in Microsoft Excel

Wrap text is a useful technique that you will use frequently when working in Excel. You add the shortcut by adding a style in the Style box. Adding the Style box to the Formatting toolbarRight-click one of the toolbars, and select Customize. Select the Commands tab, and then select Format. Drag the Style icon from the Customize dialog box to the Formatting toolbar, and drop it next to the Font Size box (or anywhere else you choose).

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