Friday, August 22, 2008

Gmail Cloud Computing Benefits Your Small Medium Business

Difficult these days to garnet any peace-of-mind when it comes to managing your office environment in a distributed fashion - on your PC, on your laptop and on your PDA. The constant threat from viruses, spam, spoofing, fishing and other security annoyances is stressful enough.

But what happens when your mobile device is lost or stolen?
What about all that data and emails on the unit?
How do I protect it? How do I recreate it?

Calm yourself and ease your mind with Office on Demand, Software as a Service. FREE!

Called cloud computing, any business small, medium or large, especially those requiring remote or mobile data access, should look at what Google Mail, Gmail, can offer. (Read More about the Benefits of Gmail...)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Simple Personal Finance Checklist - Consider Yourself as a Business

Why would you not consider yourself a business of ONE person? Or your family as a business of 3 or more people? Well that is exactly what you are - "Me Incorporated", "I Inc", "We Incorporated". You truly must consider yourself a small family business. Like any business you have ongoing expenses (mortgage, rent, utilities, groceries), revenue (salary and other income) and major capital expenditures (house, vehicle, vacations, renovations).

Like any good 'household business', you need to do some planning. Set out a budget for the year, track your expenditures and retained earnings (savings). Yes, all of this looks, feels and is exactly like a well run business. On My Gosh! Don't rush out and buy an accounting package to run your household. And no need to take a crash course on accounting or bookkeeping. You can accomplish all your financial tracking and planning requirements with some paper or by using a simple template with your favorite spreadsheet package - Microsoft Excel or even with Open Office.

Just like a well run business, your household budget and tracking your spending is best served using a visible record of events; namely, financial records, bank or check register. It is just like tracking your road trip progress using a map. If you know where you are now, then you will have some idea when you will arrive at your destination. In life, money or finances allows you to get to your personal destinations or dreams. A visible financial roadmap of your 'Me Incorporated' finances, mapping your progress, seems logical.

Running your 'Household Business', like corporate business, requires a few processes to keep track of your finances:

1) Establish a yearly and monthly household budget. Consider all your expenses - weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly outlays of money. You will be surprised at the length of this list and all the places you spend your money.

2) Track monthly your actually spending and income against the budget you established in step 1. This will help you see the 'peaks and valleys' of spending or seasonality aspect of your expenses. Over time, you will come to know these expense 'peaks and valleys' and this will help you maintain a positive cash flow. Bottom line: have money in the bank to pay all your expenses and still have some left over (retained earnings). Your single biggest challenge in running any household (or business) is always having enough money in the bank to pay the bills; especially, the unexpected ones. Having a buffer of savings will help with these 'peaks' in expenses.

3) Track all your bank account activity. Track and enter in your Bank or Check Register every deposit, every electronic (ATM, web, PayPal, debit machine) transaction and every analog (check, money order) withdrawal. And reconcile your bank statement every month. Know exactly how much money you have available in your bank account(s).

4) Especially track your spending through credit cards and lines of credit. These are potentially the 'run away' expenses. Remember only once a month do you see the visible record of your credit card spending. Compound that with the fact that most people have more than one credit card. This can easily result in multiple 'spending surprises' each month. Be diligent in tracking your use of credit card transactions. Breakdown the credit card expenses into their respective budget items - gas, groceries, clothing, entertainment, etc. This will help you separate normal household expenditures from other shopping incidentals. You will come to see your spending patterns and can now make adjustments. Just like your bank account, reconcile your credit card statement every month.

All this personal bookkeeping every month can be done with pen and paper or set up a personal finance and budgeting template using your favorite spreadsheet software. Using an electronic spreadsheet allows for all of the mundane calculations to be processed automatically, reducing monthly reconciliations to a simple 5-10 minute endeavour. Whether you choose an analog or digital approach to your personal finance bookkeeping, these visible records are the most effective way to plan and control your personal finances and reduce one of the major stress points in your life - Your Financial Health.


Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business development, training and marketing services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Incentives Spiffs and Bonuses- A Thoughtful and Deliberate Sales Program

Incentives, including bonuses, can be a very effective tool for driving positive and lasting behavior toward achieving clear goals or objectives. Handle with care! My experience in corporate management, both private and public sector over the last thirty-something years, has clarified the power of effectively deployed incentives and bonus programs. My experience has also seen scars of team destruction when incentives are ill conceived and deployed in healthy organizations.

Historically, when incentives are introduced in an organization, top management ranks, tend not to thoughtfully and diligently consider or monitor the overall impact on human behavior and ultimately Corporate Values and Corporate Culture. Human resources is rarely invited to these incentive creation sessions. Why not? The tragedy: once incentives cause people, especially executives, to only focus on those areas 'that pay' the ugly side of competition and greed can take hold. If unchecked, again especially at the executive level, this can escalate into self-serving actions and maybe even deceit and collusion. Remember corporate disasters like Enron, WorldCom, Nortel?

Some things to consider when deploying incentives in an organization:
1. Who should be entitled to incentives - Executives, Management, Staff? Only those taking the front line risk? Who will not receive this incentive and what impact can be realized?
2. What specific goal(s) or objective(s) do you wish to achieve. What is an appropriate incentive - money, prizes, gifts, etc?
3. Where in the organization is the most appropriate place to introduce the incentive - sales and/or non-sales, management and/or non-management, group or individual level incentives?
4. When should each incentive be introduced, its duration, ongoing review of payouts, milestones and termination?
5. Why is there a need for an incentive? Are there other ways to accomplish the goals without incentives?

How will the incentives be administered? Announced? Monitored? Measured for ROI or Success? Will awards be publicly broadcast or privately awarded? How will the incentive(s) be received by those that are eligible and those that are not eligible?

Incentives that cause individuals to have a myopic self-serving focus which could result in little regard for preservation of corporate values, team effectiveness and good work ethic can be organizationally destructive. Badly executed incentives could even cause permanent damage to corporate culture.

Incentives typically deliver a promise of an improved financial gain for individuals involved. This carries an impact beyond any other motivational incentive. Always consider the effect such financial incentives could have across the entire organization. Passing over the support areas of the organization when considering incentives may create cross-functional distaste and team erosion. The ultimate goal is to increase and improve customer presence (sales) and satisfaction (returning customers). Everyone in your organization has a part to play in selling solutions to your customers. For those not directly touching your customers, but supporting your field teams, consider team or group incentives. Team or group incentives will often have a more positive long-term effect of building stronger local and regional teams. Certainly all management studies and teachings indicate that healthy teams are most effective. Personally, I would recommend to first introduce team oriented incentives and recognition programs before considering individual achievement awards.

For No Person is an island. Go Team GO !

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business development, marketing, and internet marketing services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Link Exchange Strategies – Tips to ensure a WIN-WIN Link Strategy for your Website

Building Link relationships, websites that link to your website, is an important element in Search Engine Optimization. Link Popularity is analyzed by Google and other search engines that determines your page ranking. Page ranking is an important factor that determines the relative page placement of your weblink resulting from a Google search request. Google calculates page rank (PR) based on a number of factors including relevant url links, number of inbound or one-way links, and page ranking of inbound links.

Remember Google weighs the number of inbound, one-way links to your website as more significant than reciprocal or two-way links exchanges. A reciprocal link is one where you establish a link to a site and in return they link back to your website. However, do not underestimate the importance of establishing 2-way links. The fascination of creating one-way inbound links has lead to the creation of some suspect link strategies by would-be link exchange companies.

I've seen a flurry of emails from link exchange parties spouting off about the virtues of 3-way links which emulate one-way links. What these link exchange people do is set up a new an separate domain that is effectively a quick-and-dirty directory. These directories have no relevant affiliation with their own eCommerce website(s). These ineffective directories have nothing but URL link information (usually grouped by category) to hundreds of eCommerce sites like yours. Their Win-Lose strategy is:
- they set up a link to your website on this self-serving directory
- in return, they ask for a link from your website to another eCommerce website

This establishes a three-way link: Your website to another Relevant website and their non-relevant, self-serving directory to your website.

Be wary of such 3-way link exchange schemes – WHY?

1) directories carry less impact on Google page ranking (no relevancy for most directories)

2) most times these self-serving directories have ZERO page rank (PR) (Always check a sites page rank before exchanging links)

3) such 3-way links provides a WIN for them (they get your website with a good PR to link to their website) and a LOSE for you (you just get a link from a ZERO PR directory)

What are some simple strategies to increase one-way and two-way links:

1) continue to establish reciprocal 2-way link exchanges with relevant websites that have or will have a PR2 or better. Continue to add these 2-way links on a regular basis. These links will establish and improve your PR quicker than posting your URL information on the thousands of little directories.

2) consider 3-way links only if A) the inbound link is an legitimate, relevant eCommerce site with PR2 or better or B) you see that the inbound directory has relevancy and a PR 4 or better

3) consider Article Marketing, i.e. BLOGS, eZines and Press Releases to increase your one-way inbound links to your website. Article Marketing (like this very article) is the best way to establish your credentials and trust as a knowledge broker and establish Hyperlinks to your website – a 1-way inbound link to your website!

All the major search engines – Google, Yahoo and MSN search and catalog articles posted to popular eZine and BLOG sites. It is all about providing people with the best information in response to a keyword search request.

In business, attracting and retaining customers starts with building trust. Give your website a personality, a trusting personality. There is no better way than by deploying article marketing to build this trust and, at the same time, increase the one-way links to your website(s).

About the Author:
Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business development, marketing, and internet marketing services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Ubuntu Linux is Prime Time for your Notebook and Desktop – The Case for Deploying Linux across Your Business

As a business consultant, web designer and photographer my technical know-how around doing system administration on my Microsoft desktop is limited and sometimes I do require the assistant of my computer engineering son to get it right. In a Microsoft Environment, keeping updated with respect to potential security breaches and patches is a constant vigil. The rigor of keeping current with OS updates, Norton updates and Spyware updates is time consuming. Valuable business hours each week are spend and lost on this task of self-administration dictated by the Microsoft Operating Environment.

So with the purchase of an IBM T40 (a tough notebook), increasing system administration time was not an option. This alone forced an serious consideration of Linux as an alternative operating environment. That was five years ago. Now an established Linux user, I can clearly profess the capabilities and benefits of Linux for small and large businesses, especially, when it comes to notebook deployment.

What Linux variant is best for small business and notebook deployment in your company?

As a small and medium business development manager with Sun Microsystems, exposure to Linux and the debate around its viability was a daily event. Questioning and challenging the virtues of Open Source (FREE) Linux versus Licensed Linux versions like Red Hat and Novell SuSE continues to this day . After years of personal use of Open Source (Free) Linux, I can never go back to running the Microsoft Operating Environment on my notebook. And once you can get Linux versions of Quick books, Quick Tax and Picasa (now available on Linux), there is no reason to stay in that perpetual administrative nightmare world of Microsoft.

Having successfully deployed two Open Source Linux variants on my IBM T40 notebook over the last 5 years, a compelling comparison can be made between Fedora and Ubuntu. Fedora, the Open Source version of Red Hat, required the installation expertise of some Linux gurus from Belleville Ontario. It worked fine, but required some Linux ninja system administration every 6-9 months. Administration items applied during these visits included upgrades to Open Office (the open source version of Star Office), Linux OS fixes and new peripheral drivers. This, again, turned out to be a drain on my scarce time for doing real business.

Now the Linux called Ubuntu is installed on my notebook. Ubuntu by Canonical is a full Open Source Linux based on Debian Linux. Ubuntu is now available on Dell systems and Federal Governments are adding this Linux operating environment to their list of standard available OS's for all desktop and notebook computers.

Right out of the gate, Ubuntu was simple to install. You could even bring down a trial copy to experience exactly how it would behave on your notebook before downloading and committing the Ubuntu OS environment to your machine. But the best part is that Ubuntu continuously keeps on top of OS and all related application software updates. Ubuntu has an Update Manager that magically appears in desktop tool bar. And with a simple click (and password) you are kept current on the latest versions of Ubuntu patches, any Linux application software you have installed from Canonical and Open Office upgrades.
With Linux rebooting your machine after an update is nearly non-existent.

Oh, as an added treat with Ubuntu, Ubuntu boots up on your machine in less than a minute. I still go get a coffee when my Microsoft desktop is booting up. An additional benefit of Ubuntu: there is no requirement for installing ant-virus and anti-spyware software. Ubuntu inherently repels these vial scourges of the internet.

With Ubuntu your system administration life will become simple and painless. You can spend more quality business hours selling and marketing.

Want to cut hidden costs in your organization that manifest themselves as Microsoft self-administration by your end users?
Ubuntu is a must for you or your IT folks to consider. Seriously consider, test and deploy.

About the Author:
Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business development, marketing, and internet marketing services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Responding to Customer Problem Situations – How to Handle Customer Complaints as part of your web-based business

It doesn't always work out. You have provided your customer with a number of merchandising offers and pricing options that seem favorable and fair. But no matter what you feel is a great offer, there are times when a customer wants to just return your product. There are other customers that will have a complaint about delays in shipping or product appropriateness.

No matter how clear your return policy is defined on your website, customers feel that they should return it with a complete refund. No questions asked. The mega retailers have created this no-haggle return policy, because they have other avenues to resell these items; namely, through their discount outlets. But for the small boutique online retailer, who employs a drop-shipper, returns are usually charged a restocking fee. That fee is borne by the online retailer. It is then understandable and reasonable that a customer re-stocking fee is necessary to recover some or all of the re-stocking and credit card costs that you bear as the retailer on the initial customer purchase transaction.

When you are in the Customer Business, inevitably, you will be required to address a Customer Problem Situation. So how do you respond to these unavoidable yet regrettable customer problem situations? What is the best way to respond in writing to these customers?

These Eight time-tested tips have helped me write effectively to Customer Complaint Response Situations over and over again:

1) Write your response as if your words will ultimately be posted on the internet. It could appear, in whole or in part, on someone's BLOG, visible to all the web world to read and discuss. Remember problem situations are opportunities to further market your company's trusted image and extend customer goodwill.

2) These emails or letters addressing problem situations should never tell the customer what they did wrong; instead, tell your customer exactly what they need to do to make the situation right. Detail the steps the customer must execute to realize the solution. This "BE POSITIVE"approach was applied many times over the 30 years when I was a software support manager for both Hewlett-Packard and Sun Microsystems.

3) Use your written word to further develop and grow your trust with your customer. "Active Listening" applies to the written word as much as it applies to conversation. First strive to understand, confirm that understanding and then proceed to a proposed solution.

4) Be fair in your solution proposal, but don't "give away the farm" as part of your problem resolution. Think Win-Win. Ask yourself the question: With what you are offering as a solution, is this likely to keep this customer as a repeat customer?

5) Break your 'fix-it' offer into two parts, a current fix and a future buy offer. Apply some common sense toward fixing the present situation (partial refund, item exchange or return). Then entice the customer to come back and buy again with an offer against future purchases (like an additional 5% discount or free shipping).

6) For a product replacement situation, this could be an opportunity to "sell up" your customer to a better product or service.

7) Have a clearly defined Returns Policy Page on your website. Don't hide the fact that you charge a re-stocking fee. Always be transparent with your Return Policy, Shipping Information and Privacy Policy. Nothing hidden in these areas but rather openly disclosed will build customer trust in your website and company.

8) Accept that there will be times when you will lose the customer. Forever! Sometimes it just doesn't work and you will not be able to save a customer. Be gracious in your closure - "We had hoped we could make this mutually beneficial offer work " and then Let it go. No guilt – No Regret.

In your journey to continuously maintain high customer satisfaction, you will discover that "All Customers ARE NOT Created Equal" and "The Customer IS NOT always right". Both the Seller and the Consumer have responsibilities toward ensuring the sales transaction is mutually beneficial. Encourage your customers to ask questions and get answers before they buy. Strive for a Win-Win sales experience.

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business, marketing, and internet marketing consulting services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line Professional Services and Retail websites, like Communicate Innovate.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Simple Accounting for the Small Business - Synoptic Journal Bookkeeping using a Simple Accounting Spreadsheet Template

Starting a small business out of your home, offering products or services like business consulting, photography, selling on the web or a MLM? You are now faced with tracking all your expenses and revenues for your business and you certainly don't have the money yet to engage a bookkeeper or accountant. If your business is a sole proprietorship, whether it be a Canadian Proprietorship or a US-based Proprietorship, you do not require an accountant to submit your company financials (books) to the IRS (USA) or Revenue Canada). Your business revenue and losses are reported as part of your annual personal income tax. For this small business start-up, you won't need to buy fancy accounting software, like Quick Books or AccPac to track your business.

Only as part of incorporating Bizfare Enterprise Inc in 2005 was it a requirement to engage an accountant. My accountant did insist on using Quick Books software for my business accounting. Up until then using a simple spreadsheet template served my business accounting needs for over ten years. This simple spreadsheet accounting stood the test of multiple audits by Revenue Canada (CRA and Revenue Canada Goods and Services Tax. Both the hardcopy columnar pad and an electronic spreadsheet version of my financial books were accepted by Revenue Canada. (BTW the audits disclosed more ways for me to claim back additional taxes for the previous three years! Now that's my type of audit!)

In your new start-up business venture, you likely will generate somewhere between 10 to 30 accounting transactions per month. These transactions would be items like Expense, Revenue (sales), Liability (Loan) type transactions and Sales Tax (Federal + State/Provincial) Collection/Deductions. These transactions are further broken down into various Business Accounts. All the Accounts you set up for your business is called a Chart of Accounts. Recording your business financial transactions (Journal Entries) can be executed with pen and ink on an accounting columnar pad or electronically with your computer using a spreadsheet program (MS Excel, Open Office, Star Office).

Whether you employ electronic or hardcopy media, you need to develop a simple Journal template to create your Business Synoptic Journal. This Synoptic Journal format has the advantage of allowing you a complete view of all your individual journal entry transactions against all your various Business Accounts. Creating this Synoptic Journal is easier to do than you think and requires no prior accounting or bookkeeping knowledge.

TIP #1: You could further reduce the accounting line items (Journal Entries) by consolidating like items such as 'all the Sales for the month' and 'all parking receipts for the month' into one totaled line item for the month.

Where do you start to identify the various Business Accounts required for your Synoptic Journal?

If you currently work for a company or government, secure of one of their employee expense forms. Look at each of the areas identified as expenses - meals, mileage, hotel accommodations, taxi, car rental, telephone & cell phone, air fare, office supplies, etc. This is an excellent place to identify the various Business Expense Accounts you need to set up for your business accounting books. To complete your business Chart of Accounts, include a Business Bank Account, Sales, COGS (Cost of Goods Sold), Sales Tax Collection, Marketing Expense and others as required. Each of these Accounts will be a listed as a title across the top of each column of your Synoptic Journal. Each row (line item) will be the individual journal transactions entered by you. The journal transactions are grouped and summarized for each business month; usually, January through December.

So your Synoptic Journal would look something like this Sample Synoptic Journal at

The column headings might be in this order (from left to right):


TIP #2: Unless your business is Incorporated or an LLC, you don't need to go through the expense of opening a business account with your bank. Usually Business accounts charge a higher monthly fee, charge for printing checks (cheques) and don't offer any interest on your monthly account balance. Instead, open a separate personal bank account (maybe savings). This will show the 'taxman' that you are keeping the business separate from your personal banking. Remember you are a sole proprietor and all your business income (and losses) are to be applied directly to your personal income tax submission ( a s per IRS and CRA).

To save you time and make is very simple, I have already created a simple spreadsheet Synoptic Journal template that performs all the calculations for each month and rolls up the 12 business months so it can easily be included in your annual personal income tax preparation. This Synoptic Journal template has Debit/Credit checks and balances, tracks sales taxes, mileage and totals each account for your entire fiscal year. If you want this FREE Bookkeeping template, you can get it at Communicate Innovate. With a few key strokes, which will help identify yourself, I will gladly send you this FREE Synoptic Journal Template and also any future Small Business Tips.

TIP #3: One Rule of Accounting is that every time you record a journal entry (line item which applies the transaction against the appropriate business accounts) the Debits and Credits MUST REMAIN EQUAL at ALL Times. This Debit Equals Credit calculator is built into this FREE Bookkeeping Template. When you have completed entering a line item (journal transaction), check to ensure that the amount the the Debit cell equals the amount in the Credit cell. If they are not equal, you have not entered the amounts properly in your journal transaction. Correct the problem before entering your next journal entry.

You are now equipped to capture your business financial books with some simple accounting software. Happy bookkeeping! And Happy Selling!

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business, marketing, and internet marketing consulting services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line Professional Services sites, like Communicate Innovate.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Contributing to Life By Parent-like Actions - Parenting by Learning, Growing and Applying

Is it miraculous or maturity that, as a newbie grandparent, the meaning of life seems clearer than ever?

This new and wondrous child, our granddaughter Ellie, has jumped Grandma (Baba) and Grandpa into a new chapter of our lives. After some over-fifty reflection, the notion of making a name for yourself in the corporate or political realm now appears to sit more toward the “all about me” end of the “lifetime achievement” scale. Being a positive contributor to the world is really the ultimate goal of life - moving up the 'Scale of Lifetime Achievement' toward the more selfless “all about you” end of the scale.

This personal aspiration of growing global goodness can be somewhat formidable. So maybe applying a more localized focus for your personal earthly contributions is the best way to positively impact this world. Goodness in bite size pieces! It is the small individual acts of goodness, when aggregated with others people's small positive contributions, that really make this world a better place for everyone.

MEANING OF LIFE #1: Contributing to Life, even through the smallest action, is the meaning of life itself.

Life and my upbringing has taught me one thing: The best way to make this a better world is to focus on your local world, starting with your immediate family and then your community. “Keep your own backyard in order”, my parents used to say.

Think about your earthly role and responsibilities from the aspect of a sibling, a life partner or a friend. It may allow you to identify ways you can make a material difference to those closest to you. After all, this is your circle of influence, where you should responsibly provide the greatest and most profound impact on human behavior. Think of this. If our life's accomplishments and contributions created a positive force on our immediate Circle of Influence, this world would continue to grow and prosper into a much better place for us and future generations.

Scientists and Psychologists have long said that our whole human personality blueprint is determined in the first 10 years of our lives – our formative years. By the age of 10 years 90% of our Life Values are solidly established in each individual. Think of this! In the first 10 years of our lives, the way we think, the way we think of ourselves and others is defined and imprinted as our psychological makeup. Our Value System is now defined - the course of HOW we grow and interface with our earthly surroundings. The only way this personal value course or mindset can be altered would be through some significant emotional event: some impactful event that 'stops us in our tracks' and forces us to consider a alternate path from this point forward.

With such lifelong impact associated with our formative years, it stands to reason that Parenting is a major determination of a child's ultimate adult human behavior. It is our role as parents that garners the single most important impact on life. There can be no greater vocation in life than raising children to become productive, positive and additive to the goodness in this world.

Parenting, at a minimum, requires that a child's need for basics, like Food, Shelter and Safety, be met. It is the higher needs of Affection, building self-esteem and self-actualization that truly define the areas that are affected by parenting or early childhood development.

MEANING OF LIFE #2: Being a committed Father or Mother to all your children!

Provide your children with a solid foundation so they may be the Best That They Can Be as an adult. Be committed to all levels of child and adolescent development. Across the entire range of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs:
- Physiological
- Safety
- Love, Affection and Belonging
- Self- Esteem and Esteem received from others
- Self-Actualization (a person's need to be and do that which the person was "born to do”)

There is nothing more important than being a parent! The foundation for a person's adult life is influenced, molded and formed in those formative years of life. The parent has the ability and responsibility to create the best environment for learning and enforcing social, self-confidence, attitude and leadership skills.

Like any area of expertise, parenting (and in a support role grand-parenting and teachers) requires continuous study, discussion and exercise to improve and perfect the craft.

MEANING OF LIFE #3: Life is all about learning, growing and applying (Ask Listen Try) to create an even better world.

Let's expand the traditional definition of parenting. Being parent-like could also include responsible parenting to those children of the global community called our friends, our colleagues and our neighbors. Expand the idea of Parenting or Grand-parenting to include any adult responsible for some aspect of a child's upbringing or development or education. Now with even more committed and responsible parents ensuring a healthy childhood environment, won't this be a much more supportive and tolerant world?

I must get back to being a grandfather. I truly enjoy this part of my life!

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business, marketing, and internet marketing consulting services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line Professional Services sites, like Communicate Innovate.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Fix Your Chronic Tardiness Problem - Your Personal Challenge on Respecting Time Commitments

Whether intentional or by misfortune, being late for a meeting is, in itself, a visible sign of disrespect for other people's time. Think about the fact that your tardiness usually affects not just your own productivity. Your being late has a infectious multiplying factor because tardiness impacts the productivity of those many that are kept waiting. The impact in real dollar cost associated with productivity loss related to lateness are staggering.

Bottom line: 10 minutes/day of lateness equates to $90 Billion/year in lost productivity or 1% of the US GDP

Recent studies have shown that chronic tardiness affects 20% of the US population, Yes, 20% are consistently late. In 2006 Corporate CEOs show being late 8 out of 10 meetings. This alarming trend of Chronic CEO tardiness has actually worsened since 2002, when a study by management consulting firm Proudfoot, highlighted CEOs were late six in 10 meetings.

All good studies wouldn't be complete unless they categorized the types of latecomers. According to an ABC News report in March 2007, there are 4 types of chronic tardiness people:

1) Rationalizer type: Blames outside factors

2) Absent-minded Professor type: forgetful or disorganized

3) Deadline or Producer Type: Adrenaline addicted junkie. Gets a psychological high on having a jammed schedule

4) Rebel type: Defies authority and gets a high in keeping people waiting. Feel so important that feel people are willing to wait.

Diana DeLonzor, in her book “Never Be Late Again”, has chronic lateness types further defined into seven categories.

Bottom line: Whether it is a thrill or habit, there are steps you can take to reduce and eliminate your chronic tardiness problem.

How do you respect and effectively utilize the universally shared commodity of time?

Balancing your time with those around you is an ongoing challenge. Be vigilant about effectively using your time and anyone sharing your time. Your calendar, your day timer (or PDA) and the clock are intrinsic tools of the business trade. Learn to tell time, use timers and challenge yourself to get there on time.

There are mental mind-sets and effective meeting processes that can help you kick the tardiness problem (they helped me).

Consider your scheduled meeting times as just a center point of your overall meeting time. It is usually the informal meetings or contact before and after the formal session where most of the business or decisions are solidified. Always allow time for this informal contact:

1) Allow yourself 15 minutes before each scheduled meeting or event to:
- get your thoughts or agenda together at the location for the meeting
- have a quick meeting with the main person to review the agenda
- chat with the person who is setting up the meeting room to get information on the attendees. Executive Assistants and Administrative Assistants can be an invaluable source of information. Build trust with this individual.
- socialize and introduce yourself to the attendees prior to the formal meeting. You are likely to pick-up on the temperament of key individuals attending your meeting.

2) Allow 15 minutes after each scheduled meeting or event to:
- review how effective the meeting was perceived by your key customer (coach) or by an attending colleague.
- Take time with the key person (key influencer) to review the outcome of the meeting and strategize next steps
- Test the water and ask for the business. You might actually get the order. Alllow time for that too

3) Give yourself the 15/15 minute buffer before and after each scheduled meeting to allow for unexpected things. Plus you will less likely impact on subsequent meeting times. Early is always better than late. Arriving on-time is the most visible sign of disrespect toward the other people involved. For first time meetings, being on-time is one of the major positive impacts on 'first and lasting impressions'. Add to your good reputation – be on-time.

Including this “15/15 Time Wrapper” around each of your scheduled appointments and meetings will afford you more time to prepare/strategize (before)and then assess/close(afterwards). Reduce stress on both yourself and those around you. Your respect for other people's time is a measure of your own self-respect. Being respectful is an honorable trait - a trait that can only add to your glowing reputation.

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business development, marketing, and internet marketing services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Reality Internet Marketing: XML Sitemap in 4 Steps Ensures Page Indexing in Google Yahoo and MSN Search Engines

Is an XML Sitemap effective in getting your website Page Indexed on Google? Or indexed on any other Search Engines?

Creating and XML-based Sitemap and FTP'ing this XML Sitemap to the lowest directory on your website does alert the Google spider robot to review your website. It is an effective way to get more of your web pages indexed for your website. It is also effective, when you add new pages/content to your website, to:

1) regenerate a new XML Sitemap file, FTP it to your website
2) alert Google Site Maps to look at your site AGAIN NOW.

And now XML Sitemaps have just become even more important!

Google, Yahoo and MSN have announced that by January 2007, they will also standardize on the use of one common XML Sitemap file to index your website! All three mega search engines will now use the same XML Sitemap file to index your website.

So what are the steps in creating and getting the Google XML Sitemap file to your website directory?

These 4 Steps will get your XML sitemap file created and registered with Google:

(1) use a software tool to create the sitemap in Google's designated XML format. You can create a Google Sitemap for FREE (maximum 750 pages per website) at >Sitemap Generator. Be patient with this FREE XML Sitemap file generator. It sometimes reports URL breaks (likely timeouts) when there are none. I found using it off peak hours (late at nite) generates cleaner files.

ADDED BENEFIT: The Sitemap Generator also creates HTML, ROR and Text Sitemap Files, which are used by thousands of other search engines and web crawlers to index your website.

(2) upload the XML file (and HTML, ROR and text files) to your website. You want to FTP the XML sitemap File created in step (1) to the lowest level directory on your website. There are many FREE FTP programs our there. Download the latest version of Filezilla. It is one of the easier FTP programs to use.

(3) Verification - notify Google of the existence of the XML sitemap file. This is done by registering at Google Webmaster Tools. Follow the steps at Google Sitemap to Verify your website by FTP'ing the Google Verification file to your website and then requesting Site Verification. You need only do this verification step once. Under the Webmaster Tools Dashboard you will see a check mark for each of your sites that have been verified.

(4) Submit XML file – once Verification is confirmed by Google Webmaster Tools click on the appropriate listing under the Sitemap heading. Highlight the box next to sitemap.xml and then click on Resubmit Selected button. Your sitemap.xml file will now be submitted to Google for indexing.

From this point forward, whenever you change/add/delete links or add/delete pages on your website you will repeat steps 1, 2 and 4 so that the Google, Yahoo and MSN bots can re-index your website.

While you're at it, create a specific HTML Sitemap Page on your website to be used by other search engines and directories. This will help their BOTS and Web Crawlers migrate through your website. This Sitemap Page also acts as an index for your customers helping them migrate your website. Here is a sample Sitemap Page.

Bottom line: XML Sitemap files are an important ingredient in getting your webpages indexed in Google as well as Yahoo and MSN. It is equally important as the top two SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategies, Keywords and Inbound Links. No excuse now. Just Do it.

About the Author:

Carl Chesal is a business and channel development consultant, trainer, internet marketer and professional photographer. He operates BizFare Enterprise Inc, providing business, marketing, and internet marketing consulting services. Bizfare Enterprise also operates a number of secure on-line shopping sites, like Home and Body How To Plans Recipes Hobbies and Collectibles.