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Effective Financial Management Tips

Effective Financial Management Tips

Financial management means putting together the economic resources at hand to make efficient use of them and taking decisions that can successfully culminate in acquiring more assets for the family or business. With effective utilization of funds, you can even attract finance to meet the short-term and long-term requirements of the family or firm. The whole process is intense and deals with the selection of specific or a combination of assets to deal with the monetary issue, if any. The overall aim is to reduce the size of the problem and ensure fiscal growth of the enterprise or family funds.

Financial Management Analysis

This analysis deals with the calculated and predicted cash inflow and outgoings. The analysis is directed towards the study of the effect of existent funds on managerial objectives. It handles everything, right from procuring the funds to effective utilization of the same. Dedicated analysis handles procurement of funds from multiple sources, and since the funds are from different sources, they naturally need to be addressed, considering the difference with regards to the potential risk and control.

Tips

This management practice involves the optimum use of funds issued via equity, especially in the case of a business. This source is the best from the risk point of view since there is no involvement of any repayment. Management of business funds should ideally capitalize on equity capital, in spite of it being the most expensive source of funds. Furthermore, it should also involve calculation of risk, cost and control, and maintenance of the cost of funds at minimum. This is done with the intent of establishing a proper balance between the involved risk and optimized control.

Tapping Foreign Investments
In today’s competitive business world, mobilization of funds is very important. The implications play a very significant role in the overall growth of the venture. Financial management involves the raising of funds through the domestic and foreign market. When considering overseas solutions, direct and foreign institutional investments are major resources to tap, in order to raise the required funds. This whole mechanism designed for effective procurement of funds has to be periodically reviewed and modified, understanding the changing requirements of foreign investors.

Utilization of Funds
The ultimate goal cannot be addressed or achieved without first designing a strategy to ensure the proper utilization of funds. This helps to evade situations in which the funds remain idle or lack of profitable utilization of funds in hand. When availing of funds for the business, it is important to understand the involved cost and risk factors. Wastage of funds will only result in the business objectives not being met and ultimately, loss. The funds existent within the business should be critically reviewed from time to time and employed properly and profitably.

Scope and Extent
It has become imperative to address sound financial management in all types of organizations to guarantee efficient use of all resources. Research reveals that many firms liquidate because of mismanagement of funds and not, as it is commonly believed, because of obsolete technology or the lack of skilled labor. It is, in general, designed and customized according to different client needs to optimize output from the assessed fund input. In a situation where resources seem scarce and the demand for funds is high, its proper utilization is an absolute necessity.

The objectives of efficient financial management include maximization of profit. However, profit maximization is a limited objective and if it becomes the sole focus, then the approach only leads to more problems. This aspect must take into consideration, the relationship between risk and profit and work towards achieving a balance. The value of a business is analyzed on the evaluation of the stock market price. Thus, all in all, this financial practice should take into account, present and expected future income and the dividend policy of the firm to come up with a near-perfect understanding of the company’s progress potential.

Self Managed and Self Directed Teams

Self Managed and Self Directed Teams

The service industry is getting more attention in the B-World. It has never been as easy to establish a company, I should say, a listed company. Production and operations companies have seen so many business management concepts for quality control and best team management practices including quality circles.

Emery suggested, “In designing a social system to efficiently operate a modern capital-intensive plant, the key problem is that of creating self-managing groups to man the interface with the technical system.”

The basis of the autonomous work group approach to job design is the socio-technical system theory that suggests the best results are obtained if grouping is such that workers are primarily related to each other by way of task performance and interdependence.

Charles Peguy described, “A man is not determined by what he does and still less by what he says. But in the deepest part of himself, a being is determined solely by what he is.” A self-management team is made of such persons who are motivated by self.

Definition

A self-managing team or autonomous work group is allocated an overall task and given discretion over how the work is done. It provides for intrinsic motivation by providing people autonomy and the means to control their own work, which will include feedback.

Self-directed teams are those that have been structured to manage and coordinate their own activities, and make many of the day-to-day decisions that would have traditionally been made by a supervisor or manager. They usually have responsibility for a complete piece of work (such as engine assembly) and they work quite closely and interdependently.

According to a research study, the TQM and mass-production organized groups did not improve customer service quality or sales volume. While self-managed teams improved sales by 9.4% and the quality of customer service by 6.3%.

In fact, comprehensive surveys report that 79% of companies in the Fortune 1000 currently deploy such “empowered,” “self-directed,” or “autonomous” teams. Because of their widespread use, much research has been devoted to understanding how best to set up such teams to maximize their effectiveness.

Understanding Multi-Skilled Teams Better

Self-managing teams incorporate the concepts of Hackman and Oldham’s job characteristics model:
Autonomy
Skill variety
Task significance
Task identity
Feedback
Their features include:
The team enlarges individual jobs to include a wider range of operative skills.
It decides on methods of work and the planning, scheduling, and controlling of work.
It distributes tasks among itself, i.e., its members. It plans and guards the process on its own, solves daily problems, without having to consult a manager or supporting services.
It takes account of the social or group factors, and the technology as well as the individual motivators.
It maintains independent contact with others teams and staff.
It improves working methods on its own, and has all the relevant information available on the basis of which they evaluate their results.
Its members possess both, qualifications on the product they deliver as well as certain organizational qualities.
Self-Management Team Development

According to Vanessa Urch Druskat and Jane V. Wheeler, leading self-managed teams in an organization is a process that can be grouped into four basic functions.
Continually moving back and forth between the team and the broader organization to build relationships.
Scouting necessary information from managers, peers, and specialists.
Persuading the team and outside constituents to support one another.
Empowering team members through coaching, delegating authority, and exercising flexibility regarding team decisions.
Corporate Testimonials

“Whole Foods is very committed to the team structure and self-managing work teams; they’re like the basic cells of the company. The teams are empowered. They do their own hiring. They do their own scheduling. To become a team member at Whole Foods, you have to get voted on by your team after a trial period. If you don’t get a two-thirds vote, you don’t get on the team,” said John Mackey, founder of Whole Foods on this concept.

Hewlett Packard trusts and respects individuals focusing on high-level achievement and contribution, conducting business with integrity, achieving objectives through teamwork, and encouraging flexibility and innovation.

Small Business Ideas in Which You Can Use Your Organizational Skills

Small Business Ideas in Which You Can Use Your Organizational Skills

Do you have superior organizational skills? If you do, you can put them to good use as the basis for a small business. Although you may take your stellar organizational skills for granted, people who feel unorganized and overwhelmed will be happy to compensate you for your skills.

Some examples of small businesses based on organizational skills are listed below:

o Personal organizer – Some people are unable to organize their homes and/or small businesses. They may simply lack good organizational skills; in cases like this, you can help them establish easy-to-follow systems for their various needs, including filing, storage, tasks, and so on. In other cases, they may face accumulations of materials collected over extended periods of time. In these cases, you will need to be the conscience and voice of reason to help them determine what should be saved and what should be thrown away.

o Organizational consultant – whereas a personal organizer generally works on a short-term basis, an organizational consultant would be available as needed, perhaps on a retainer basis. Companies may take advantage of the expertise of an organizational consultant when they need to rework filing systems, reorganize physical space, move into a new office setting, or restructure organizational personnel.

In addition to the above, excellent skills are necessary in some other small business settings as well. When combined with solid mathematical skills, good organizational skills can lead to small businesses such as accounting or bookkeeping. When combined with financial expertise, top-notch skills can motivate a person to establish a small business as a financial analyst. Finally, when combined with a love of knowledge, solid organizational skills can translate to a career as a writer or researcher.

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Why Strategic Planning Training Is Necessary for Organizational Leaders

Why Strategic Planning Training Is Necessary for Organizational Leaders

In the current economic environment, organizations are slashing payrolls left and right to cut costs. It is therefore imperative that organizations find a way to to maximize the productivity of their employees to make up for the reduction in staff. One effective way of doing this is by providing organizational leaders with strategic planning training, so that they are more equipped to set and achieve long-term organizational objectives. Since change is the only constant in a business environment, an organization will benefit from having individuals on staff that can quickly notice and adapt to changes.

Strategic planning training will generally focus on teaching employees to answer three questions about the company:

What do we do?
For whom do we do it?
How do we excel?
Another resource that helps companies answer these questions is facilitator training for organizational leaders. Since many organizations hold meetings or planning sessions that focus on strategic direction, it is beneficial to have someone on staff that can serve as a facilitator role. The facilitator is the individual who will oversee a discussion and work to have all employees contribute ideas, so that the organization is able to meet its objectives. While some companies prefer to outsource the task to a trained specialist, other companies find that providing facilitator training for organizational leaders is a great way to expand their skill set to achieve the company’s goals. This type of instruction, combined with strategic planning training, helps set true leaders apart from their peers.

A leader who can develop organizational business strategies, put those strategies into action, and spontaneously change strategies, can mean the difference between a successful business and a stagnant one. Typical strategic planning training will begin with the basics of strategy formulation, and then focus on real-world examples.

When a business decides that it wishes to acquire this type of instruction, it will have a variety of methods to do so. Courses offered by colleges and universities can help bring employees up to speed. Online courses are also beneficial because they can be administered to employees on-site. However, many businesses opt to have a specialized leadership training organization appear on-site and provide several days of planning sessions.

These specialized organizations combine the benefits of facilitator training to create a strategic planning training alternative that uses facilitation strategies to leverage the knowledge that executives have about the company. As opposed to a consultant who comes in, makes suggestions, and then leaves, these facilitators will use specialized techniques to help organizational leaders arrive at an optimal solution. Most of these organizations will then include a check-in after a certain period, usually mid-year, to ensure that proposed changes have been implemented.

For lasting change that will make it easier for companies to identify a strategic direction for the immediate and long-term, and to empower organizational leaders to develop a sense of direction for the organization, reach out to a leadership training company that combines strategic planning training and facilitator training.

The Benefits of Online Discussion Forums

The Benefits of Online Discussion Forums

The Internet is growing daily, and it offers people the opportunity to get to know each other without meeting in person. While social media sites are a popular way to express opinions and discuss topics, online forums are also frequently used. These forums are often set up on sites so that visitors can meet each other, ask questions and discuss differences. Forums are an excellent way to increase your presence online, and they are ideal for getting the support and assistance you need to make your business grow. Their many benefits are what make forums extremely popular with online users.

Collaboration

When you find a forum that is filled with similar businesses or people with common interests, you can work together to find solutions to common problems. Online forums are perfect for getting ideas about marketing, parenting, education and other areas of interest. It can be incredibly helpful to brainstorm with people you have never met, and your conversations will always be there for you to review in the future. This will help you develop your business or successfully complete whatever task you are researching.

Online Presence

When you join forums, you are exposing more people to your business or blog. You may get several visitors based on the comments that you leave, which can improve the traffic to your blog. If possible, advertise your website on the forum, and readers may begin to think of you as a respectable expert in the field. You may also get new business leads, which could draw more customers your way.

Organize Groups

While it is beneficial and enjoyable to visit other forums, you may want to start a forum of your own. If you own a business, a forum might be the perfect way for your employees to brainstorm and collaborate without having meetings. If you are a school administrator, your teachers can use forums to discuss theories and educational materials. If you are on a committee in the community, you and other committee members can post schedule updates, upcoming events and fundraising ideas. You can even create a forum to discuss your favorite television series with your friends. When you make a forum of your own, you can also control who can see it and join in the discussion, which gives you more control over the direction of the posts.

Online discussion forums are beneficial for many reasons. You might want to start by dropping in on a few of your favorites to see how they may help you reach your goals. Once you become familiar with how forums work, you can start your own to reap even more benefits.

How to Start an Online Business Using Free Drop Ship

How to Start an Online Business Using Free Drop Ship

Another important aspect is to do a proper research on the availability of the market for the products or services you are willing to resell. Is there a constant market for the products, how is the demand and how reliable is the source of the products or services. Once this is establish one needs to find suppliers who meet their needs effectively.

Ensure that you understand the drop ship industry thoroughly, get to know about the necessary procedures and legality of setting up an online business using a free drop ship making sure that you don’t fall prey to middlemen who pretend to be free drop ship firms. These middlemen will only con you thus making your online venture a less profit one.

For any ecommerce business that uses free drop shippers to flourish one need to make their website rich in content. Make use that the content provided about the different products and services you are reselling offers enough information on its use, benefits and limitations if there are any. It should also give information on the price of the products and how long it takes to deliver them after payments. Your ecommerce website should also give clear information about the terms and conditions that are to be oblige when conducting the business.

Once one has developed and established the online business forum, they need to find genuine free drop ship firms. After finding free drop ship firms that are willing to ship products to your customers it is important to form a contract with them. List all the necessary conditions that you think will work best for your online business and also talk to the drop ship firms about their conditions to ensure that you understand them.

Once the online business has been launched it is necessary that you advertise. Doing business without advertising and marketing is risky because no one will know of its existence. Advertising an online business can be easy if you are willing to use search engines to make people aware of it. One can also use the other forms of advertising and marketing that are available in the market.

Finally make sure that your customers get the value of what they pay for. Make sure that your online business is fast and reliable. Ensure this by establishing a good relationship between you and your free drop ship firm. Making sure that they deliver exactly what the customer ordered for and that they also meet deadlines. Always remember that the success of any business is a satisfied customer.

Online Businesses Can Get Huge Benefits From Internet Business Forums

Online Businesses Can Get Huge Benefits From Internet Business Forums

The majority of small online business owners will spend quite a bit of time on social sites such as Facebook and Twitter and dismiss internet business forums as a tool to promote their online businesses. By doing this they are missing out on a great opportunity as forums are a place where like-minded people get together to discuss topics that are relevant to all of them and to find solutions to specific problems that affect their particular market.

Because forums are really quite small when compared to many of the broader social media sites, particularly the more popular ones they are often overlooked. There have been several studies done where it has been reported that practically every online business owner has considered being active on social sites as important to their online success.

So how can forums help your online income business?

Just like social sites, the main purpose of internet business forums is to establish credibility and build relationships with like-minded people involved in the same field of business. We all know that people are happier to purchase anything from people that they know and trust.

Finding and joining a forum that is related to your business niche is a way to get your business in front of people who are already interested in the online income opportunities that you are offering. Also one of the main reasons that people post on forums is because they are looking for some type of help. It could be something as simple as an answer to a basic question or they may be looking for a specific product that they have been unable to find. It does not really matter; the thing is it can be an opportunity for you to help them.

But first you must be sure that you understand the reasons why you are posting and being active on a forum. If your intention is to create an effective strategy you need to be able to add value to the conversation. Mostly online business owners post on forums so that they can promote their websites (not their income opportunities), to get answers to questions and to gather information and learn about target marketing and also to pre-sell the idea of their products to prospective customers.

Forums are different from the bigger social networks as they are far more personal and generally it is a much tighter knit community. What this ultimately means is that anything you have to say will carry far more weight on the outcome whether it is for better or worse.

To be sure that your presence on the forum is welcomed it is essential that you provide useful and valuable information and preferably to keep it original wherever possible. One big benefit you can gain from the personal nature of an online forum is by posting questions that relate to products or services that you promote or are planning on creating. This is an excellent method to get market research directly from your target market. Consider it as a big focus group.

If you use it wisely an online business forum could possibly be one of your most successful tools for your online income business and the best part is that it is something that so many of your competitors are probably overlooking completely which can give you a fantastic unique edge.

How to Determine a Good Online Business Spot

How to Determine a Good Online Business Spot

Internet has become a Must have in all homes and office establishments. With more and more people getting into exploring, searching for information and buying products and services online, the virtual market is expanding like never before. For any one wanting to start a business, this is the place to be.

Many people proclaim that they have made huge amounts of money through their Internet business overnight. While it is true that such business opportunities are available, the claim about the amount of wealth looks too good to be true.

Internet is a breeding ground for both legitimate as well as illegitimate businesses and you find both the categories in plenty.

It would be useful for you to go through the guidelines mentioned below so that you are able to differentiate and spot good opportunities and keep away from the scams.

Make it a point to Google and check out information on the business opportunity that you find on the Internet. Google is the fastest and best search engine for this purpose.

When there is a genuine business opportunity available, you will find that a lot of forums, blogs and websites have picked up the threads and sufficient conversation and information is available for one to see. Opposite is the case with the scams, where you will not able to find sufficient information and no genuine review would be available. If the business opportunity is a genuine one, you can see that it spreads like wild fire within no time in the Internet.

Do not stop just by Googling a search. You will have to get into the details and do a in depth search to come up with all the information that is available and check all facts and figures.

Normally when someone gives you information on a blog, if the blog and the information is genuine you will see that the author would have signed off with his e signature and also list his other IDs and links. This shows that the blog is genuine and the author is talking about a genuine opportunity.

You should arrive at a conclusion not based on one or two website search, but after checking out all the information available on the internet, visit all of the sites, blogs, forums and go through others opinions to gather all facts to help you decide.

Internet has a lot of online business communities that have members who are professionals and can give you valued opinions and comments. You can pose your questions to them. To be able to do so you have to type online business forum on Google and you will get the links.

Six Keys to Creating Wow Customer Service Experiences

Six Keys to Creating Wow Customer Service Experiences

Customers of every kind of business imaginable these days bemoan the state of customer service. While the global economy and the Internet have given businesses the opportunity to serve more clients than ever before, the trend has also given way to impersonal, lackluster customer service. It’s unfortunate that most businesses today don’t realize that they are regularly losing valuable customers if they don’t focus on providing an exceptional customer service experience.

In most businesses, once a customer begins dealing with the customer service department, he or she is already in a negative mindset. The best customer service representatives aren’t those that simply neutralize the problem. Outstanding customer service representatives take a negative and turn it into a positive that ensures the customer is not only happy, but is convinced he or she has had an outstanding experience – the Wow Factor – that he would not have gotten with any other company.

The key ingredients of the Wow experience are:

o Seamless Service

o Trustworthy Service

o Attentiveness

o Resourcefulness

o Courtesy

o Pro-active Service

Seamless Service means providing everything the customer needs, not just what is required to meet the minimum standards. It’s about making sure that they don’t have to wait and wonder. Customers will appreciate a smooth, seamless process for addressing their needs. If there are several steps needed to take care of their concerns, keep them in the loop – update them by email or with a quick phone call so that they know you are working on the situation and progress is being made. By keeping them abreast of what is going on, you are letting them know you haven’t forgotten about them and that you understand their concerns – reassurance and communication are powerful customer service tools.

Trustworthy Service is essential to retaining customers. Promising a customer anything and delivering nothing is the surest way to not only lose a customer, but get the kind of “word of mouth” bad press that can ruin you. Under promise and over deliver – If you promise a satisfactory solution and then go the extra mile to not only satisfy the customer, but gain their appreciation and “Wow” them, you will get word of mouth that will bring new customers to you.

Attentive Service means paying attention during and after the initial contact. How many times have you contacted customer service and been subjected to an obviously scripted response from the customer service representative? Does it give you the feeling they aren’t really listening, but just trying to get to the end of their canned presentation?

Attentiveness should run through every customer service experience, from listening carefully to the customer’s concerns to following up after the exchange is over to make sure their needs have been met. Listening isn’t just about hearing – it is about understanding what is really being said. The words are just the beginning -what about the customer’s tone of voice? Her mood? Is she disappointed, angry or frustrated? Keying in to the customer’s mood and responding appropriately is essential, and it means not following a script.

Resourcefulness means finding solutions when there appear to be none. Many companies have iron-clad policies that must be followed whenever a problem arises; however, sometimes a customer won’t be satisfied by the “company line” approach. Resourceful customer service representatives know that there is always a way to move beyond the standard procedures in order to make a customer happy. Resourcefulness involves finding a solution when a solution isn’t apparent. This may mean moving up the chain of command before the customer demands to talk to your superior. Companies with excellent customer service also give their representatives some leeway so that they can come up with creative solutions on their own. When a customer senses that you are going beyond the norm to help them, they will feel valued and respected.

Courtesy is a commodity that is becoming rarer every day. It takes so little to be polite but it is becoming a lost art. Say please when you ask a customer a question, thank them for their information and take your time talking to them. Nothing makes a customer feel more devalued than being treated like a number. Use the person’s name, make requests rather than demands and know when to apologize. When something goes wrong for a customer, they want to hear that you understand their frustration and that you are genuinely sorry that they are being inconvenienced. It takes nothing to say, “I’m so sorry you aren’t satisfied and I hope we can do something to correct this.”

Pro-Active Service means not waiting for the customer to come up with a solution that you simply follow through on. A pro-active customer service representative anticipates the needs of the customer and follows through. Don’t wait for the customer to ask you what you are willing to do – anticipate the question and answer it before they can ask. If they call and say they aren’t satisfied, apologize and immediately suggest some solutions. Customers want you to take the lead – acknowledge their unhappiness, offer a solution or solutions and explain to them how you are going to follow through. Pro-Active service means taking the lead, which will reassure your customers that you know what you are doing and that you will follow through.

If you keep these six keys in mind – seamless service, trustworthiness, attentiveness, resourcefulness ,courtesy and pro-active service – you will be able to offer every customer the Wow Customer Service Experience that inspires loyalty and keeps customers coming back for more.

How to Restore Customer Satisfaction after Customer Service Failure

How to Restore Customer Satisfaction after Customer Service Failure

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A customer service failure, simply defined, is customer service performance that fails to meet an individual’s expectations. Typically, when a service failure occurs, a customer will expect to be compensated for the inconvenience in the form of any combination of refunds, credits, discounts or apologies.

The success of such customer service recovery efforts is determined by the individual’s expectations and perceptions of the organization. Two key elements impact any effort to restore customer satisfaction: the strength of customer relationships and the severity of service failure.

Service failure: Service performance that fails to meet expectations

The strength of the customer relationship with the organization prior to a customer service failure has a buffering effect in the event of failure. Research suggests that customers who expect the relationship to continue actually have lower service recovery expectations, and in turn, are more satisfied with customer service performance after recovery.

While this may seem counterintuitive at first glance, consider the expectations of customers with a stronger relationship with the organization. A customer who does not have much commitment to the organization tends to be more transaction-focused and expects immediate service recovery when a particular transaction fails to meet expectations.

Conversely, a customer with strong commitment may demand less immediate compensations with the expectation that strong future interactions may correct the customer service failure over time. Such findings suggest that service providers not only have measures in place to identify the strength of customer relationships but also the ability to react to customer service failures.

The severity of the customer service failure moderates the relationship between customer satisfaction and commitment. Even with strong service recovery, research indicates that customers may still be upset, engage in negative word-of-mouth, and be less likely to develop trust with and commitment to the organization, if the original customer service failure was really bad.

In these cases, managers may need to do more to mend the strength of customer relationships and restore commitment. To identify such cases, service organizations need to track and identify occurrences of customer service failure as well as the severity of each.

The data available at the point of any customer service failure, most notably the information provided by the customer at the time of the complaint, should be viewed as critical marketing research data necessary not only for immediate service recovery but for improvement of future performance.

Remember, a customer service failure is defined as a failure to meet customer expectations and the success of any recovery effort is measured by each individual customer against his/her own expectations. Therefore, managers would be well served to conduct a post-recovery assessment of customer expectations and perceptions of recovery performance against those expectations.

Classic customer service failure: serving cold

The impact of service failure recovery on customer satisfaction can be easily illustrated with a familiar example. Consider the case of a restaurant patron complaining about his meal being served cold. In all likelihood, this is not a severe customer service failure if managed properly.

If the customer’s server fails to offer a sufficient apology and brings back a reheated meal after a 20-minute wait, a first-time customer may be immediately deterred and never return. If this is a long-time customer who has always received excellent service, he may or may not write this failure off, but either way will expect this sub-par service to be countered with excellent service in the future.

While you may expect the customer with a long history of having received excellent service to be more demanding in the case of such a failure, in reality the new customer has the higher expectations. His perceptions of the restaurant are impacted by only this one experience where customer service performance failed to meet his expectations. Without a formal apology from a supervisor, a refund, and perhaps a future credit, this new customer may allow this experience to so alter his expectations of customer service performance at this restaurant as to prevent him from returning.

The long-time customer has his expectations set by a long history of excellent dining experiences and may be easier to satisfy in the immediate wake of a customer service failure.
In either case, the restaurant manager must immediately begin to turn his focus on ensuring future service delivery levels and enhancing the strength of customer relationships with each of these patrons.