Sunday, October 28, 2007

How Not To Be A Workaholic

Regardless of whether you work from home or not, working long hours is not productive or emotionally fulfilling after awhile. Even though you may be extremely busy, working ten or twelve hours may not help you catch up since there will always be more work for you to accomplish. Learning how not to be a workaholic takes time and discipline but with a little practice, you will be able to find a balance between your work and your life.

If people are always commenting on the amount of time you spend working, then you may be a workaholic. If you find yourself constantly thinking about work, then you may need to change the way you approach your work so you can relax and reduce the stress in your life. Being able to strike a balance between work and life is not always easy. Depending on what you do for a living and the demands placed on you by others, you may have to make dramatic changes in order to be happier and more productive in a shorter amount of time.

The first step to reducing the amount of time spend working is to limit yourself to an eight hour day. If you work at home, this means creating a work schedule and sticking to it so you can get your work done within a certain amount of time. If you work for someone else, you may need to restructure your time so you can get everything done without having to stay longer than eight hours. If you have a demanding job, consider switching jobs or stop volunteering to complete tasks that are not yours. This should reduce the amount of time spent at the office.

The second step is to not take work home with you. If you work at home, shutting off your computer, closing your office door or leaving your home to take a walk or complete chores will help you unwind after a long day. Taking work home is an indication that you could not complete it during regular business hours. While some exceptions can be made as a rule, you should leave all work at the office and forget about it until the next day.

The third step is to relax when not working by visiting friends, taking up a hobby, or taking a nap. There are plenty of activities you can engage yourself in when not at work. Instead of focusing on what you have to get done, you should focus on the present and enjoy the moment. Being a workaholic is not healthy emotionally, physically and intellectually. You will be more productive when you give yourself a chance to relax each evening and on the weekends.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Thursday, October 25, 2007

Starting A Busines Partnership

You and your best friend are looking into starting a business together. You have done all your research on the type of business you want to start. You have talked to some financial backers and are ready to go. Or are you? There are at least three things you should know before starting a business with a friend.

Get it all in writing: You may have been friends since kindergarten but money does strange things to people. Its in the best interest to you both to sit down and get all of your business details in writing. Who is the owner and who is the co owner. How much profit from the business does each person receive? Make sure that all of these business related details are fully documented, dated and signed by each person. This is just one of the precautions you should take prior to the beginning of your business partnership.

Prepare for the worst: If in the event you and your friend have a fall out, be prepared. When partnering with anyone in business affairs you risk having to battle it out over company events and money. People can become very power hungry, selfish and greedy. Money after all is the source of all evil. If this is to happen its best that you have all of your business details documented as stated above. Also make sure you have mentally prepared yourself for such an event. It can be a heart wrenching and stressful occurrence. It is healthier for you to have at least considered that this is a possibility.

Protect yourself: Be wise in what you do with the business. Take care of your finances. Save money when possible and keep detailed track of both incoming and outgoing cash flow. If there was a falling out of sorts between you and your business partner you want to make sure you are financially secure. You protect yourself this way as well as keeping good bookkeeping records. Once again people do become a type of Jekyl and Hyde with money. Its not selfish to be sure that you are safe. Business affairs can become scandalous and overwhelming. You just want to make sure when its all over you come out on top.

Keep these three things in mind, documentation, preparation and protection. This information is not to make you feel paranoid. Its not meant to make you suspicious of your friend either. These are just pieces of information that are important in keeping you safe. Its a simple fact in the world of money. Business is serious and should be taken so. Think before you leap and you and your friend will both start on a safe path to a beautiful business relationship.

Tile Saws and Concrete Mixers

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Finding Health Insurance For Your Business

Finding health coverage can be a difficult challenge. When employed by a business you just go with whatever insurance is offered if you can afford it at the time. When you go into business for yourself it opens up the world of insurance. You have to be the one to search through the different coverages available and see if any of the offered insurances is right for you. How do you decide what you need or want? Here is some information on health coverage that may make you more knowledgeable and better capable of choosing your insurance provider.

Health care coverage is separated into two forms of private health care coverage in the United States. First offered is health insurance policies. Second are managed care plans, which predominate over health insurance policies. The federal and state government heavily regulates each. Many can view health insurance Policies as a negative choice since they will often only cover what is medically necessary. Illness, injury and other medical conditions are considered to be medically necessary.

If you are to be hospitalized for evaluation or observation this is not covered. There are also a lot of clauses and limitations. Examples of this would be pre existing condition provisions. Federal law states that a pre existing condition is only valid if it relates to a condition that was formerly recommended by insured care within the last six months before enrollment. Issues like this can really make it difficult for people to choose health Insurance policies.

Managed care programs include HMO's, PPO’s and POS’s. HMO stands for Health maintenance organization. An HMO often owns and operates its own hospitals and medical facilities. They hire their own doctors, nurses and medical staff. Independent practices are models of HMO that contract out independent physicians in private practices. A PPO is a preferred provider organization and a hybrid of the HMO and PPO is POS that stands for Point of service plans. Managed care plans often have a fixed monthly fee.

The purpose of this organization to transfer the financial risk of health care from the patient to the care organization. If the cost of illness care is over the portion paid by the patient the care organization covers the fee. The PPO usually offers two or more tiers of coverage with varying benefit levels and co pay options. Some issues arise, such as females being forced to seek out a general practice physician for gynecological care. Some care plans are willing to work with female patients if their family doctor can refer them.

No matter the health insurance option you choose you will face ups and downs with both forms. Your best bet is to do thorough research to find which provider best suits your personal needs so that you will be better satisfied with your health coverage.

Health Insurance Made Easy

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Friday, October 19, 2007

The Option Of Dropshipping: Is It Worth It?

One way to earn money online is through dropshipping. Similar to affiliate marketing, you will be selling books that are distributed by another company by creating a website, marketing the books and taking orders. While this may seem like an easy way to earn an income, you should look at this method carefully because you may be able to earn even more money by not having to rely on distributors.

When you create your website and start selling books, customers will not know that they are being shipped by the distributor. For a monthly fee, you will be given access to books that are available. Advertise these books anyway you want through websites, banner ads, blogs, articles and through other websites. When customers place an order, you will be responsible for collecting the money and processing the order. The order is sent to the book company who then ships the book to the customer. You will not have to worry about shipping the books, returns or making sure the book arrives on time.

The monthly fee you will have to pay for access to the books varies from distributor to distributer. Many distributors have thousands of titles for you to choose from based on which groups you want to market to. This saves you a lot of time in developing a product and shipping it to people. All the profits are yours and you can expand your list of books at any time. Many people have earned a steady income through dropshipping.

But dropshipping has its drawbacks as well. You may not be able to sell bestselling books, or new books until a certain amount of time has passed. The monthly fee can be very high, so if you are not selling enough books to cover this expense, you will lose money. If the distributor goes out of business, you will have to find a new distributor or a new product. Book sales vary from year to year depending on the needs of customers, so you will have to choose very carefully which books to sell.

Before you decide to enter into the dropshipping business, you should research distributors to see which ones are legitimate as there are some that will take your money and then disappear. Make sure the distributor will send books via regular post and via the internet as ebooks have become more popular over the years.

When you find a distributor that is legitimate, you should review their book list to see if there are books that will sell online. Out of print books, genre books, how to books and inspirational books usually sell online faster than novels, poetry and other types of fiction. Choose your books carefully and market them to the right groups on the Internet.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Starting An E-Commerce Business Without A Loan

The boom of the 1980s permitted legions of people to cash in on the mushrooming availability and popularity of the Internet but when the bubble burst, there were those who did not cash in but instead ended up owing the bank a small fortune. Those who profited were also those who were able to find a way of starting an ecommerce business without a bank loan. Granted, some might have dipped into their credit cards or homes equity, which is only marginally better but by and large they only invested that which they knew they could afford to lose.

At this point in time potential web entrepreneurs are a lot more hesitant to march to the bank and ask for a loan to fund their ecommerce business. They have learned from the mistakes of others and perhaps they are already so strapped in their personal finances that they know adding another monthly payment will send them over the abyss. Those who are able to not take out the loans in order to invest them in a shiny new ecommerce opportunity will also be those who will live to try another day. The others who may or may not succeed will require years, some even decades to financially recover from a failure.

It is important to understand that you do not need to start an ecommerce business with a bank loan. Instead, there are alternative ways of funding your entrepreneurship and those methods might in the long run be safer. For example, you will need a great computer and the latest software to make your presence known on the Net. While it is tempting to buy the latest and greatest machine, find out if you can simply upgrade that which you already have.

Usually you will be able to do so for a fraction of the price that a new system costs. If a new computer system is indicated, wait until special sales events come up and take advantage of them. Refurbished units and used machines which are for sale on many of the major auction sites are also a good idea. Similarly, do not worry about having an office to start out. You spare bedroom will work just fine until the money begins to roll in. It is important that you do not spend money on items which will do little to further your business.

Thus, if you are making and selling e-books, an office is unnecessary. Advertising, packaging and other incidentals can all be tackled at a shoe string budget until your business grows to such an extent that you can get a bit fancier. While it is tempting to ask for money from the bank, remember that you will need to repay this money no matter what. Starting an ecommerce business without a bank loan makes more sense in the long run, since you will be able to finance the next phase of your business with the monies you earn from the current phase.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Monday, October 15, 2007

Booking A Motivational Speaker For Your Company

A motivational speaker can help your business in many ways. In addition to energizing employees, a motivational speaker can help employees find better ways to be productive, take more pride in their work and learn how to work with others. While there are many motivational speakers out there, finding the right one for your company may take some research.

Research speakers online or create a list of references from clients, employees or vendors. You may have heard a speaker at an event or you may have friends in the field that will be able to recommend someone. Once you have a list of possibilities, you should contact them via email or phone to outline what your needs are. Motivational speakers each have their own style. You may be able to view video on their web site or they may be able to send you a sample of their work.

Since speakers mostly specialize in one or two topics, choosing a speaker that is knowledgeable about what you need them to speak on is important. If the speaker is not confident about the material, how can they motivate others? Your employees will be able to spot someone who is not prepared and will resent their time being wasted. If the speakers you have contacted do not specialize in your topic, they may be able to recommend another speaker who does.

After interviewing a speaker that you think is a match, find out even more by reading reviews of recent events they have spoken at, books they may have published or articles that may have been written about them. These items will give you additional insight into what to expect from the speaker.

Many motivational speakers travel often in order to maintain their business. You may need to book your speaker months in advance. Keep this in mind when sending out invitations to hear the speaker. Do not invite employees until you have scheduled the speaker and you know more about what they will be speaking about. Plan at least three months in advance. Once you have a commitment, then you can send out invitations and keep employees informed.

If, for some reason, the speaker needs to cancel, you should have a backup speaker in mind. While it could be difficult to find another speaker on short notice, try anyway. If you can not find a replacement, you can reschedule by sending all employees a notice. Most motivational speakers will not cancel unless it is an emergency, so you should not have any problems. After the motivational speaker has made their appearance, send an email thanking them for their time. Not only is this a nice gesture, it will also help when having to schedule them again in the future.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Saturday, October 13, 2007

Hiring A Content Manager

One of the primary concerns of a search engine is the quality content on a website. It looks for information that is applicable to the site and in text form, contains quality information and not simply a repetition of certain keywords. Websites found without quality information are usually not listed and often is removed from the search engines indexing.

While quality content is highly regarded, in the internet age it gets old very quickly. Updated information is seen by search engines as a quality site and carries more weight in algorithms than a similar site with outdated content. As a result, it is important for websites to offer quality, fresh content on a regular basis. While there is no magic formula dictating how often website information should be updated, most agree that monthly updates offer a slight advantage.

For companies with a full fledged internet marketing plan, a content manager can be a plus for their continued growth. They can either write the content themselves or contract with a web content provider to supply the textual information they require. Many who contract specify the keywords and length of the article and those who believe that keyword density, the number of time a keyword appears in the article, is important will also specify the density.

On average, a content manager will seek quality, informative article of between 250 and 500 words with a keyword density of between one and three percent. Again, there is no hard rules concerning word count or keyword density but these number appear to be the most sought after by content managers.

Many times content managers will be responsible for blog content and are required to enter information into a blog, separate from the companys website with a signature link back to the companys site to draw more traffic as well as supply an outside link to the site, improving their stature with the search engines. Depending on the nature and size of the website, a content manager may also hire people to make blog entries on several sites proving more information as well as more links back to the main site.

Having one person responsible for the internet content leads to better consistency in the type of articles published on the site. It also helps maintain a uniform message in the content. As more people are learning that links in graphics hold little weight with search engines, they are turning more toward keyword articles and have a need for constant updates to keep their sites fresh and attractive to the search engines. A company that hosts numerous websites can find a content manager a necessary addition to their staff as they juggle the different types of articles needed for the different types of sites.

Get Paid to Blog About the Things You Love

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Hiring A Marketing Expert

Whether you are just starting out in business or have owned your company for more than 10 years, the odds are good that at some point in your entrepreneurship you will consider hiring a marketing expert. In the past, this step was the norm as soon as the money became available and many a new business owner would beg, borrow or steal to find enough money to hire that marketing firm with the glossiest brochures that promised to make the new business owners company a rising star in a firmament filled with shooting stars. Yet did you know that hiring a marketing expect does not always pay off?

For example, if your business is not at a point where you will be able to pay for the marketing expert out of your net income, you might find yourself going too deep into the red with the marketing strategies and campaigns that are being suggested and to save your bottom line at least somewhat, you may end up cutting corners and only partially implementing an intricate marketing idea that would have worked had you but followed it to the letter. In this case, you wasted your money and a grand opportunity.

Hiring a marketing expert also does not pay off if you do not hire the right individual or firm to handle your advertising. For example, if you are a pet shop owner and are considering a television commercial, you want it to have a professional look and feel. Yet have you ever looked up from perusing the paper with the television on in the background when the volume of the commercials suddenly changed and the tone became really muted?

The odds are good that you ran across a commercial that was done on a very low budget and that is lacking the professional touch of an expert. Marketing experts usually hire actors to portray customers or clerks and they may even recreate a portion of your store in a studio rather than shooting the commercial in your actual location. If your marketing expert encourages you to have your wife, sister, daughter or Cousin should play a role in the commercial, the odds are that it will be a low budget production and you will want to stay away from this alleged expert.

Last but not least, hiring a marketing expert does not always pay off if you and the expert do not see eye to eye. If you envision a low key campaign and the expert wants to paper the town with flyers and ads, you know that you will not be able to work together. Find someone who is more to your liking and who will advise you in a manner that you can afford and that you can feel comfortable with.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Monday, October 08, 2007

Building Customer Loyalty In E-Commerce

One of the distractions to customer loyalty is the availability of alternative places to buy the same products or services at the same or even slightly higher prices. With an internet business, thousands of other similar companies offer the same items at about the same price and without the loyalty of your customers there is no way to survive.

Web surfers may simply type in a keyword for a product or service in a search engine and when the different sites appear, clicking on a few sites will usually give them an idea of the price range of products. They can then choose what they see as the lowest cost for the same merchandise and make a purchase with little regard to the company from which they are buying. It will typically take a bad experience during some part of the transaction for them to become discouraged, making it important that every e commerce business has their best foot forward on each transaction to build customer loyalty to their site.

There are so many others to choose from, customers have the luxury of picking and choosing with whom they do business and they will choose the company that offers the best service or the best product at the best price. With internet commerce it is not possible for a business to get to know their competition as they can in a brick and mortar world. They can see the products as well as the prices but the hidden assets of service and delivery can only be seen if business is actually conducted.

It would be good for every online business owner to make a purchase from their own site occasionally to determine their ordering and delivery system is working correctly. If a customer has a problem making a purchase, they will not be back to waste their time. If the information provided on the merchandise is inadequate, they will not be making a purchase. If the shipping cost is excessive or the time they have to wait for delivery, again they will not be making a purchase.

Knowing what it will take to drive customers away is how a company can begin to build customer loyalty. You know what turns them away and fixing those issues on your ecommerce site will keep them coming back. Additionally, the best and cheapest methods of advertising on the internet is word of mouth. Making a customer happy that they did business with you can provide their recommendation to friends and relatives, giving you more business that costs nothing to obtain.

By focusing on the customers experience with your online business, their satisfaction can lead to their loyalty which is one of the most important aspect of doing business online.

Torrid - The Alternative For Sizes 12 - 26

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Friday, October 05, 2007

Advertising Your Business Online

Any numbers of websites boldly claim that with the help of online ad options for your business you will be virtually swimming in cold, hard cash overnight. Wish that it were so. The truth of the matter is the fact that making internet advertising work for you takes time, patience and the placement of ads in the strategic places at the right time. Blindly posting links, ad banners and advertisements in the hope that someone will see them and be interested in your business is like going crossbow hunting in the middle of the night and shooting out an arrow in the hopes of bagging a deer. The odds are against you from the beginning and do not improve significantly the more often you try.

By and large, there are some tried and true online ad options for your business that have been known to show success. First and foremost of course are the online auction sites. You may not have thought of advertising your business in such a manner but when you remember just how many different people converge each and every day on these sites, you will be able to reach quite possibly the broadest cross section of society. All age groups, both genders, nationalities from across the globe, all socio economic classes and perhaps most importantly folks with a host of different interests.

The latter is the most valuable piece of information, since an ad placed in a Corvette racing magazine will most likely not reach the bicycle aficionado. Conversely, an ad placed in the home and garden section of a local newspaper will never meet the eyes of a die hard gambler. On the biggest auction sites you have a chance to meet them all. Search engines are another great way of displaying your online ad. As online ad options for your business are concerned, this mode of advertisement may be a bit expensive but there is something to be said for popping up when a potential customer enters terms that match your business. Granted, it is still a hit or miss proposition but one that will pay off nicely if you give it some time.

One of the most overlooked online ad options for your business is the online edition of your local and national papers and magazines. With more and more news junkies logging on to the net for their daily information and news, the print papers are loosing readers. Thus, print ads are slowly going by the wayside, giving up room for the online ads. Costs vary from publication to publication but generally speaking they are well worth every penny.

A somewhat overused way of placing online ads for a business is the use of affiliate marketing. In some cases this is the best way to go, but usually folks will not click on a banner and net you a sale. Instead, they may actually become annoyed by the presence of your ads, especially when some rather inventive affiliate marketers install them into popup windows. If you do want to check out online ad options for your business with affiliate marketers, keep close control over who will be approved for the ads and who will not be approved as an affiliate. Insure that rules and procedures are in place so that your ads will be displayed as they are intended and not made part of pop ups or spam.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Building A Small Home Business

Sometimes building a business in a small town is more difficult because of the limited customer base, competition and the lack of interest in your goods and services. Before starting a business in a small town, make sure you are filling a need. If the town already has more than one barber, chances are your shop will not turn a profit. If the product you are selling is unfamiliar or costs too much money, your business may not succeed. Finding a product may be your biggest challenge but once you find one, marketing it will be the next step.

After deciding on a business, you will need to find retail space. This can be on the main street, your home or it can be on a street that is off the main road. The further you are from the center of town, the more advertising you need so people will know where you are located. Building a website is one way to solve this problem. Even though your business caters primarily to those in the town, others may want to visit your shop to see what you have. Including directions on your website will help people find your location. Billboards, signs and listings in the local newspaper are also ways to help customers find you.

Advertising within the town usually includes handing out business cards, creating a logo and a sign that is placed in front of your business and advertising in the newspaper. In small towns, word of mouth advertising is still the most powerful tool you have. If you offer quality customer service, people will tell others in the community. Using the internet is another tool you have especially if you can ship items to various locations. Market in every way you have available in order to create brand loyalty.

Once you have established your business, you will need to care for it as it grows. This means taking inventory to see what you need to reorder, making sure customers are happy with the layout of the store, the products and the customer service. You may need to hire employees to help you take care of the business. In small towns, you may be limited in how much you can earn. This may be due to the income level of residents the need for your products and the cost of shopping in your store.

You may need to adjust your prices in order to sell more merchandise. Market analysis can help you make the necessary adjustments.
Running a business
in a small town may be more difficult than going to a more populated area. But if you can sell items online in addition to opening a storefront, your potential for profit is increased.

Obinna Heche: Los Angeles- California

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