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Tag Archives: Tips

increasing productivity

14 Things Successful eople do

Trevor No Comments

From Talentsmart.com, Dr. Travis Bradburry talks about what ultra productive people do. Follow this list and jot down all the things that will make you an incredibly productive person. My personal favorite is number 12, since I am incapable of dealing with physical mail at the moment I get it; i have to keep procrastinating it to some other day.

  1. Minutes, not hours. Instead of focusing on hour and half-hour blocks, focus on the minutes instead. Know that there are 1,440 minutes everyday, and maximize your day by this guideline. You will find that you will appreciate time and use it more efficiently. “As legendary Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller told Kevin, “To this day, I keep a schedule that is almost minute by minute.” You must master your minutes to master your life.”
  2. They focus on only one thing. Ultra-productive people know what their “Most Important Task” is and work on it for one to two hours each morning, without interruptions. What task will have the biggest impact on reaching your goals? What accomplishment will get you promoted at work? That’s what you should dedicate your mornings to every day.
  3. They don’t use to-do lists. Throw away your to-do list; instead schedule everything on your calendar. It turns out that only 41% of items on to-do lists ever get done. All those undone items lead to stress and insomnia because of the Zeigarnik effect, which, in essence, means that uncompleted tasks will stay on your mind until you finish them. Highly productive people put everything on their calendar and then work and live by that calendar.
  4. They beat procrastination with time travel. Your future self can’t be trusted. That’s because we are time inconsistent. We buy veggies today because we think we’ll eat healthy salads all week; then we throw out green rotting mush in the future. Successful people figure out what they can do now to make certain their future selves will do the right thing. Anticipate how you will self-sabotage in the future, and come up with a solution today to defeat your future self.
  5. They make it home for dinner. Kevin first learned this one from Intel’s Andy Grove, who said, “There is always more to be done, more that should be done, always more than can be done.” Highly successful people know what they value in life. There is no right answer, but for many, these other values include family time, exercise, and giving back. They consciously allocate their 1,440 minutes a day to each area they value (i.e., they put them on their calendar), and then they stick to that schedule.
  6. They use a notebook. Richard Branson has said on more than one occasion that he wouldn’t have been able to build Virgin without a simple notebook, which he takes with him wherever he goes. In one interview, Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis said, Ultra-productive people free their minds by writing everything down as the thoughts come to them.
  7. They process e-mails only a few times a day. Ultra-productive people don’t “check” their e-mail throughout the day. They schedule time to process their e-mails quickly and efficiently. For some, that’s only once a day; for others, it’s morning, noon, and night.
  8. They avoid meetings at all costs. Meetings are notorious time killers. They start late, have the wrong people in them, meander around their topics, and run long. You should get out of meetings whenever you can and hold fewer of them yourself. If you do run a meeting, keep it short and to the point.
  9. They say “no” to almost everything. Billionaire Warren Buffet once said, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” And James Altucher colorfully gave Kevin this tip: “If something is not a ‘Hell Yeah!’ then it’s a no.” Remember, you only have 1,440 minutes in a day. Don’t give them away easily.
  10. They follow the 80/20 rule. Known as the Pareto Principle, in most cases, 80% of results come from only 20% of activities. Ultra-productive people know which activities drive the greatest results. Focus on those and ignore the rest.
  11. They delegate almost everything. Ultra-productive people don’t ask, “How can I do this task?” Instead, they ask, “How can this task get done?” They take the I out of it as much as possible. Ultra-productive people don’t have control issues, and they are not micro-managers. In many cases, good enough is, well, good enough.
  12. They touch things only once. How many times have you opened a piece of regular mail—a bill perhaps—and then put it down, only to deal with it again later? How often do you read an e-mail and then close it and leave it in your inbox to deal with later? Highly successful people try to “touch it once.” If it takes less than five or ten minutes—whatever it is—they deal with it right then and there. It reduces stress, since it won’t be in the back of their minds, and it is more efficient, since they won’t have to re-read or re-evaluate the item again in the future.
  13. They practice a consistent morning routine. Kevin’s single greatest surprise while interviewing over 200 highly successful people was how many of them wanted to share their morning ritual with him. While he heard about a wide variety of habits, most nurtured their bodies in the morning with water, a healthy breakfast, and light exercise, and they nurtured their minds with meditation or prayer, inspirational reading, or journaling.
  14. Energy is everything. You can’t make more minutes in the day, but you can increase your energy to increase your attention, focus, and productivity. Highly successful people don’t skip meals, sleep, or breaks in the pursuit of more, more, more. Instead, they view food as fuel, sleep as recovery, and breaks as opportunities to recharge in order to get even more done.

Which of these do you already do, and which ones are you going to start practicing?

word-of-mouth

How to be Heard

Trevor No Comments

How to be Heard by Daniel Shipley

In sales, one of the hardest things that a salesperson can feel is unheard. Sometimes as sales people, we feel as though we have such an amazing thing, that if people would just give us a couple of seconds to hear about it they would all want what we have. However a lot of people open the door to hear your sales pitch only to think, eh another sales person. With that mentality, how are sales people ever to sell anything.

The answer really is simple, be different, however the explanation and understanding is what is hard. People like to buy from people they like or things that remind them of themselves. However that first impression, people are really looking for something that will grab their attention immediately and show them that this is different and it is worth their time to listen. Trevor Clayton, CEO of International Business Academy, tells me time and time again that their success as a company comes from them being different. All the companies in Guatemala who are teaching here are doing something the same way. They have these great facilities and supplies, but it can be inconvenient to a lot of people because of the travel cost. Trevor has built his company based off the fact that, “we will come to yochart communu.”

The great big question is though how do you get past the beginning stage so that you can portray your message at how you are different. One method that I have found useful is the use of non-verbal and para-verbal communication. Non-verbal communication attributes to about 55 percent of what is perceived and para-verbal communication attributes to about 38 percent. That means together, 93 percent of communication is related to not even saying anything, but how we say it and what we are doing when we say something.

 

What I have found in my own sales experience is that positive vibes create great selling atmospheres. First impressions really do matter, so whenever I walk into a sales meeting, or I am doing an elevator pitch, I try to put on a huge smile so that the other person will mimic my smile. This may sound weird, but by doing this you will get them to smile and positive endorphins will be released inside them. By giving off a huge smile, this is an example of non-verbal communication that I do in order to make sure the sales process starts off smoothly.

Non-verbal communication is generally portrayed through facial expressions and also through postures and gestures. According to an article titled, Communication Skills by Rod Windle and Suzanne Warren, they said this about facial expressions and also posture and gestures,

“Facial Expression: The face is perhaps the most important conveyor of emotional information. A face can light up with enthusiasm, energy, and approval, express confusion or boredom, and scowl with displeasure. The eyes are particularly expressive in telegraphing joy, sadness, anger, or confusion.

Over-Exaggeration-2Postures and Gestures: Our body postures can create a feeling of warm openness or cold rejection. For example, when someone faces us, sitting quietly with hands loosely folded in the lap, a feeling of anticipation and interest is created. A posture of arms crossed on the chest portrays a feeling of inflexibility. The action of gathering up one’s materials and reaching for a purse signals a desire to end the conversation.”

Depending on different things that you do with your body, this will depend on how the message is received and how we are heard. In sales, I always had the rule that if I didn’t have the person within the first 10 seconds, then I lost the sale. Working in the door to door industry, I would try to notice something different about each house so that when I got to the door I would have something to spark conversation. Usually it was about a car they had, or their garden, or just something I noticed about the house. Building credibility is huge as well and so I would always start off my sales pitch by bringing up people that they would know that I have been talking to as well. Again, while doing all of this; keeping a big smile on my face, straight posture, and maintaining eye contact but breaking once in awhile to avoid awkwardness. Non-verbal communication was crucial to my sales because I had it mastered down in terms of the psychology in selling.

By being aware of my facial features and also my posture and gestures, I would help people feel comfortable enough to enjoy what I was selling, and made the yes’ come a lot easier.

Another important technique to being heard is used through para-verbal communication. In the article, it defines para-verbal communication this way, “Para-verbal communication refers to the messages that we transmit through the tone, pitch, and pacing of our voices. It is how we say something, not what we say. Professor Mehrabian states that the para-verbal message accounts for approximately 38% of what is communicated to someone. A sentence can convey entirely different meanings depending on the emphasis on words and the tone of voice. For example, the statement, “I didn’t say you were stupid” has six different meanings, depending on which word is emphasized.”

Para-verbal communication was another really big part of my communication in sales. They way I said words would portray how confident I was in my product. People can read right through you if you are not confident it what you are selling. One way I would stay positive is in the mirror or in the shower I would repeat to myself every morning that what I was selling truly was the best product out there and that I was helping people’s lives by what I was doing. In para-verbal communication you can be confident, but if you are not using your para-verbal correctly, you can completely give off the wrong message. For example read this sentence one way where you end the last word with an up pitch in your voice and then with a down pitch in your voice.

  • I have the best product in the world.

You can literally be saying the same sentence, but if I say the last word in an up pitch, it sounds like I am questioning myself and that I am not confident in what I’m saying. In retrospect, if I am saying this last word in a down pitch, it just sounds more confident and more like I believe in what I am saying.

vivint_selling_door_to_door_300pxIn door to door sales, we have a saying as to not throw up on the person’s front door. Now literally you really shouldn’t do that, but that is not what we were referring to. You don’t want to speak too quickly, or give out too much information on the door step, or office, or wherever you may be. Some people when they are not getting a lot of sales and getting rejected a lot tend to do this more often because they are literally expecting the no. Be calm, cool, collected and find out the needs of the customer first so that you know how to proceed with your sales presentation.

The article gives us some examples of what to remember for para-verbal communication. “…When we are angry or excited, our speech tends to become more rapid and higher pitched. When we are bored or feeling down, our speech tends to slow and take on a monotone quality. When we are feeling defensive, our speech is often abrupt.”

If you want to be heard, don’t be afraid to speak up and say what you need to say. But by being aware of your non-verbal and para-verbal communication, you will be a lot more successful at actually getting the person to HEAR you instead of just letting you talk. There are other things you can do with para-verbal communication as well such as preplanned physical things you do in order to maintain the attention, but I will leave it at this for now. I am curios if anybody out there has any experience with how non-verbal or para-verbal communication helped them get the sale, or lose the sale. What are you experiences?

 

Windle, Rod, and Suzanne Warren. “CADRE Resources.” Ideas That Work, n.d. Web. 16 Feb. 2016.

mentoring for success

6 Hobbies that will help you become smarter at work

Trevor No Comments

We all participate in some type of hobby that we enjoy doing. There are some hobbies that are beneficial in helping us to become smarter and will benefit us in our work practices. There are many different hobbies one can partake in, but there are six that are shown to be helpful in increasing ones intellect, which can transfer over and improve the efficiency within our everyday work tasks and/or responsibilities.

1. Learning how to code

Within every job today there is some digital component involved and it is for this that learning how to code can give one a significant edge in the work place. Some of the most basic codes are known as HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). By learning this it will help those to understand web design, social media, and product development. It is very easy to find lessons online in how to do this, all you will need is a computer and access to internet. One resource you can try out is a webpage known as Codecademy.

2. Learning a new language

There is no such thing as knowing too many languages, especially if you are a frequent traveler. By learning new languages it can benefit by making communication in foreign and local lands easier. It has also shown that learning adownload (9) language can help improve brain power and slow brain aging. These benefits can help in the workplace by being able to be more alert as well as being able to communicate to a wider range of clientele, employees, business partners, and etc. from different cultures.

3. Blogging

The more you write the better your communication will become. One way to do this is through a blog, which as we know is a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style. By learning how to articulate your thoughts effectively on paper (and online) can help communication skills become stronger overall. Blogging also helps you to become more proficient in how to use your grammar and vocabulary as well as assist you in understanding your own specific writing style. For online blogging it provides an easy forum for feedback and can help you continue in consistently growing as a writer based on how others perceive your work overall.

4. Reading

No matter what kind of book your reading whether it is Harry Potter or the Hunger games it is proven that reading can help reduce stress, which in return helps you to feel better about yourself. Reading can also increase all three types of intelligence including crystallized, fluid, and emotional. That increase within those types of intelligence can help with problem solving, being able to put different pieces of knowledge together to better navigate everyday life, to detect patterns, understand processes, and being able to accurately interpret and respond to others feelings. In the work setting these different skills translate into better understanding how to make things happen and better managerial skills.

5. Work out your brain

By participating in activities such as Sudoku, puzzles, riddles, board games, video games, card games, and etc. it increases ones neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity is what encompasses a wide variety of changes in neural pathways and synapses that is basically the ability of the brain to reorganize itself. Also the nerve cells respond in new ways that increases neuroplasticity, which allows us more ability to see things from different points-of-view and understand cause and effect of behaviors and emotions. With this it helps us become aware of new patterns and cognitive abilities are improved. Also increased amount of neuroplasticity can help prevent certain conditions such as being less prone to anxiety and depression while learning faster and memorizing more. download (12)

6. Meditate

Studies imply that we can control our own brain waves and be able to feel whenever we want to through meditating. Meditation can be used to relax in your personal life, but it can also be a benefit in your professional life. For example meditating can make you feel more powerful right before a negotiation, be more confident when asking for a raise, or being more convincing during a sales call. The general idea of meditating is that the brain can develop further and you can make that development on purpose. To add to that different activities stimulate different areas of your brain, so you can work on becoming proficient at your strengths as well as improving your weaknesses. Also meditating is a benefit because it focuses on self-improvement of the brain. This is a good idea and/or practice for anyone who feels they are at professional peak, are ambitious professionals, and of course entrepreneurs who are looking to maximize their potential.

 

Sources: Entrepreneur and StyleFox

 

mentoring for success

How to be a Better Mentor

Trevor No Comments

mentoring for success

Good mentoring is all about telling the truth. When you use truth-telling as the basis for your mentoring relationship, great things will happen.

ONE. Avoid ‘gotcha’ moments. Instead of waiting for your mentee to mess up, provide critique as a chance to offer help and guidance.

TWO. Seek to understand. Before rushing into judgment, strive to understand what is driving their decision. It might reveal more than you think.

THREE. Be good to them. Mentoring is about building trust, and one sure way to do that is to remove obstacles and giving them the resources they need.

FOUR. Start a 2-way conversation. Start by asking “What can I do better?” this will allow for an honest conversation and make it easier for both of you.

FIVE. Help them think big. The bigger picture is the hardest thing to see with inexperienced eyes; help your mentees see how their role and problems fit into your business’s overall.

Mentoring is a great opportunity to take someone who shows promise in your company and ensure that they become long term assets.

Source: Entrepeneur 

entrepreneur 13 tips

13 Things Every Entrepreneur Should Know

Trevor No Comments

We all have the potential to be an entrepreneur. Some of us have already been there, some of us are going through this and some of us just aren’t ready to take the first step. Whichever the case, here’s a compilation of 13 tips for any entrepreneur to become successful.

1. Have confidence in your product or service, and lots of it. Confidence is contagious. When you believe in your product and speak about it with passion; those around you will in turn, be confident about your product or service.

2. It’s not about luck. Just do it. As Shia LaBeouf is famously known for now, ‘Just do it’. You might think that your product or service needs luck to succeed; but in reality, all it needs is work and the act of ‘doing it’.

3. Focus on your product or service. The more you can focus on your product and service instead of running the business, the better the outcome. Focus on what is passionate for you instead of getting tangled in operational tangents; remember, customers are always attracted to great products and services. Plus, there are fully capable people that can keep track of books, if it comes to it.

4. Reduce fixed costs. Payroll is a number one concern when you start a business; your employees have families to support, debt and mortgages to pay. Don’t rush into hiring a full floor of personnel, but rather, leave it until you absolutely have to. Before you hire anyone, it is recommended that you put some money aside in the bank to cover up to 6 months of payroll as a backup.

5. Listen. Listen. Listen. As always, listen. Before spewing out all the wonderful things your product can do, make sure you listen. Your potential customer will reveal the pros and cons of your product so you can make an even better product! The other plus side is that this is the first step to building long term relationships with your customers.

6. Apply your experience. You might have majored in something completely different than what your product is about, but that doesn’t mean you’re not qualified to do it. Remember the first tip; be confident and realize that everyone brings something to the table.

entrepreneur 13 tips

7. Communicate values before goals. Just as it is important to be confident and passionate about your product and service, it is also important to extend this passion to values. Focus on using values to drive goals.

8. Culture based on ethics. As basic as this sound, this starts with the previous tip: communicate values and hire the right people. Reward people for making the right decisions.

9. Manage long-term priorities. As an entrepreneur, you will be needed to address urgent issues all the time leaving little room for long time planning. If you do this from the start, you can focus your actions for long-term results.

10. Have high standards. Don’t be complacent; always strive to be the absolute best. Apply this practice to employee satisfaction, social responsibilities and customer service.

11. Provide leadership. Just as you would reward people for making the right decisions; provide the necessary leadership for your employees to be great at their jobs. Take the time to coach them.

12. Personally collect and accept customer and employee feedback. Great business leaders always find time to talk directly to both customers and employees.

13. Continually refine your values and goals based on changes in the world. Be sensitive to emerging ‘quality of life’ issues for customers, employees and yourself.

This is a reduced checklist of what every company should have. If you’ve already started being an entrepreneur, don’t forget that there’s always a chance to go back and reevaluate your business. Are you ready to create the foundation for your business?

 

Sources: Entrepreneur, Ethics in business

mingle before meeting team building

Overcoming Public Speaking Fears

Trevor No Comments

Sometimes you just can’t help it. Your turn is up and your heart starts beating faster, your palms start getting sweaty and your anxiety levels skyrocket. The key to overcoming public speaking fears is all about practice! However, bear in mind that practicing your discourse is not enough. When you start losing your audience’s attention, your anxiety and nervousness will come rolling back. So the real key is to practice with the right pointers!

Here are 9 steps developed by the London Speaker Bureau so that you can rock your next public speaking event.

1439412252-a-9-step-cheatsheet-for-becoming-a-public-speaking-expert-5405fdf1989bd-w1500

gty_boarding_airplane_mi_130319_wg

How to be a happy flier.

Trevor No Comments

I have spent much of my life flying. In fact my first flight was at age six months from New York JFK to Bridgetown, Barbados. I do not remember that flight but I am positive that is when I became addicted to flying. I grew around planes all thanks to my mother who has dedicated almost 30 years at American Airlines. I am only 22 so when you do the math, I was blessed into the luxury of flying. But I have seen the airline industry at its best, when in 1999 it was very common to find me and other little kids inside the cockpit before take off. Taking pictures with the captain and pretending to fly the plane were common prior to the tragic events of 9/11. After that, plastic airline wings, pillows, blankets and headphones disappeared. Accompanying those draw backs were new fees slapped on cash strapped passengers that received the bare minimum from the struggling airline. But today the airline game is healthy or healthier than it was last decade. Today we are seeing new amenities making their way into all 3 cabins of service today and flying is once again a little less hostile, but how can we do our part to make airline operations run smooth and in our favor. I for one fly at least 5 round trip journeys in a calendar year, much less than the global businessman. So how do I get through the airline terminal smoothly and at the gate worry free? It is simple you have to become a team member in the airlines operation and everything the airline does will work for you.

24 Hours before your flight.

Ensure your bags are packed and are not overweight. Check your carriers website for size and weight allowances for your bags. Make sure to ensure your carry on bag is actually the size of a carry on and if you are checking luggage make sure your bag is not over sized or overweight. A little research before departure can save you time and money.  Some carriers also have separate allowances for bags on domestic flights versus international ones. Ladies remember a purse no matter how big or small is considered a carry on bag.

Check in online. This is possibly the best thing you can do to avoid long lines and a misunderstandings with ticket agents or the self check in systems. Utilize airline websites because they truly want to help travelers and if you save them time at the airport then you earned yourself some time yourself.

Print your ticket at home and if the airline allows you to choose your seat before hand, than seize the opportunity! Why show up to the airport and realize that you are in the last row that does not recline and to make it worse the middle seat. Avoid check in lines as well, try and spoil yourself as much as you can before you enter the battlefield.

Day of flight.

Arrive at the airport 90 mins before departure for domestic flights and two hours before international flights if you are flying with carry on bags only. Add 30 minutes to your arrival time if you plan on checking bags.

If you are so lucky to only have carry on items I suggest making your way to the nearest TV monitor and checking if your flight is still on time and the gate has not changed from what was posted on your ticket printed the night prior. An easy way to also save extra time is download the app of the airline you are traveling on. They are a great resource and alternative to staff personal if the terminal is busy. If you want a simply answer to a very simple question. Apps for your smart devices include flight status, alerts, terminal maps and baggage information upon arrival.

I have always been a fan of packing certain things in my smaller carry on in plastic zip lock bags. It makes everything easier once I am on board but also through security. Pack wires, headphones and chargers all in one clear zip lock bag. Pack another zip lock bag with your passport, pens, sleeping aids and medicines. I always suggest packing a toothbrush on flights 6 hours or more. These zip lock bags are easy for security to see and when you are on board you are not frantically looking for things every 45 mins in the overhead bin. No one wants to be the person who stands up every few hours to retrieve an item from their carry on. Once on board take the plastic zips from your bag and place them in your seat back pocket, they are easily accessible and very well organized.

But before you can enjoy the wonders of finally being in your seat on a plane you need to pass through security as easily, quickly as possible. I usually believe this is the worst part for travelers and of course security measures vary from country to country. I am an American so security for us is a multi step process. But in order to pass through security easy I try to follow a few simple rules. I try to avoid entering security lanes that have children or elderly passengers waiting in Que before me. Unless security places you in that line opt out for another line even if it seems a little longer. I like to wear shoes that can slip on and off and use my shoes as a storage compartment for all my valuables. Stripping down before I even reach the convener belt is important and placing all my items in the bin neatly is also a plus. If you stay organized then your flight process will as well. Give yourself a pat down before you walk through security screening and it is that simple. Now it is just a waiting game for your items to pass through as well.

Make your way to the gate and charge all your items before hand and take this time to reorganize your carry on. Make sure books or other reading materials are easily accessible for a long journey. Have flyers etiquette and if you are charging your laptop use the USB ports on your computer to charge cellphones, tablets or cameras, no one likes a power port hog.

Use the bathroom before departure so you wont delay push back from the gate. Airlines receive millions of complainants and fines for late departures due to standing passengers. So do your part to keep a crew happy before they close the door of the aircraft, by staying in your seat.

But now it is time for boarding. Boarding seems to be the process in which everyone regardless of culture, upbringing or language looses their mind. First class passengers and frequent elite flyers never seem to have an issue boarding because they board before the remaining 85% of the aircraft.  I do not know why passenger catch cabin fever in the terminals but main cabin boarding seems to be a stampede and only delays the process.

So make sure you board when requested or permitted to board by airline personal. Refer to  your boarding pass as a guide to a successful boarding and know your group number. I always question when they board Group 1 and everyone on the entire aircraft surrounds the boarding lanes which makes it harder for everyone to get through. So sit tight and remember that if they run out of overhead space then your bag gets checked for free and life could be worse.

Once you hear the beep confirming your ticket is sending you to your next destination its time to have faith in your fellow passengers and realize you need them to work with you and the crew to hear the amazing words “flight attendants prepare the cabin for departure”.

Once in your seat give yourself a high five and sit back and relax but don’t sit back to far. Remember that you cannot have your seat out of the locked position until after take off, the same goes for tray tables and for you lucky ones in business / first class your lie flat seats and foot rest need to stay put tight until after the captain pulls back and brings the wheels off the ground.

But your fight to stay happy during your flight is not over yet. Landing and departure is also when you question if you are on a plane with people or cattle trying to escape from a barn. Observe the cabin and try and time when it is best for you to jump into the aisle like a car jumping lanes on a packed highway. But before you want to anger all the passengers in the rows behind you should take a few minutes to pack your things up that you have at your seat. Grab your carry on out of the overhead compartment and keep the line moving and make sure to compliment the crew, even if they gave Pepsi when you ordered Coke. It is okay because they are here for you safety and you made it where you were going safe and sound.

Remember that everyone smooths or destroys the airline flying experience. We are responsible for about 50% of our travel experience. Airlines, weather conditions and fellow passengers make up the rest of the equation. So do your part in making yourself and everyone else as happy and calm as possible.

Before flying remember

  • Dress simple for security and comfort
  • Plan the night before and complete check in task before arriving to the airport
  • Research your airline
  • Have knowledge of airline rules, allowances and federal / international regulations.
  • Pack, and pack with intelligence
  • Move quick
  • Keep items organized
  • Have faith in fellow travelers
  • Say Thank You!

and remember everyone wants to get to their final destination just like you do.

business email writing

Business eMail Writing

Trevor No Comments

It might be obvious, but only write emails when there is a clear purpose. There’s no need to say needless things when the average person using email for business sends and receives 122 emails a day, according to a study completed by the Radicati Group.

Opening Sentences

“This report explains our plan for launching the new product line.”

“This recommendation offers a solution to the problem of delayed responses to customer inquiries.”

“During a recent claims adjusting process, we discovered some concerns with your property that must be addressed.”

“I am pleased to inform you that we have the results of the customer satisfaction survey.”

One thing per eMail

Treat your email differently from a meeting. During a meeting you might want to address several different topics, and the more topics you resolved the more successful the meeting is. The opposite is true for emails; the less you say the better. Stick to your opening sentence that would address the purpose.

“I am writing to…..”

Basic Structure

1. Greeting: Dear sirs, Hello, To whom it may concern, etc.

2. Compliment or pleasantry: I found your report insightful, I enjoyed your presentation, It was a pleasure to meet you at the [event], etc.

3. Reason for your email : I’m writing because I would like to review your report/presentation more closely, I would like to discuss supplying your company with [product], etc.

4. Call to action: Could you send me the report/presentation by Thursday? Are you available on [date and time] for a meeting?

5. Closing message: Thanks in advance, Sincerely, Regards, etc.

6. Signature: Name, job title, link to website.

 

Sources: Business Writing, tuts

 

 

english-language-day

5 Tips to improve your English skills, effectively!

Trevor No Comments

Learning a new language can be difficult, trust me I know! They always say, the person giving advice doesn’t take their own and I would agree. In the current moment, my urge to learn Spanish is more of hobby than it is a necessity. Here in Latin America and across the world English is a lifeline of new opportunities and for those of you who need a few extra tips on how to land new vocab, here are five tips for you.

1. Read articles online.
Reading online is possibly the best thing you can do. Find a newspaper, magazine or other source of media that interest you. Reading out loud a little bit allows you to hear yourself and it’s a plus because you will practice your pronunciation. Circle words in the article that you do not understand. Challenge yourself and try to figure out the word by trying to understanding the sentence. If you understand the sentence than you can take an educated guess as to what the word means.

2. Look up words you don’t know.
Number 1 and 2 are friends. If you cannot figure out the word do yourself a favor and read the sentence before and after and try again. Really try and understand what the sentences are saying and try to pinpoint the root of topic of the word. Is the word negative or positive? Is it a noun, verb or adjective? So if you are still stuck, grab a dictionary and look it up.

3. Keep a small journal of new words.
Learned a new word? So, write it down and put the definition next to it, and under that use it in a sentence. Keep a small book of your new discovered words so you never forget them. You will also be surprised in a year how many words you taught yourself by reading.

4. Change topics frequently.
If you read the same genre of articles, novels or magazines repetitively then your vocabulary will not grow. If you are into the local news that is great, you will learn some great vocab. Make sure to read an article about space and travel every so often too. Switching up your articles will expose you too new words that you possibly wouldn’t see in your everyday reading English sessions.

5. Watch and read advertisements.
Ads teach a lot of creative words. If you want to be a more detailed speaker ads will be your guide, and the great things about ads are they’re everywhere. Ads also relate to many different types of topics and will increase vocabulary as well. Use ads to your advantage sometimes you can learn a regional language or slang that is not English spoken world wide.

When finding or identifying new words, be patient and be ready to challenge yourself first before surrendering to the dictionary. Also if you want to understand proper pronunciation use the power of the internet to help you. On dictionary.com, google translate and other sources you have the ability to hear audio of English words, use this to pronounce the words correctly.  Try these and home and see where it takes your English.

-Patrick

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6 ways to keep your interview from going off-track

Trevor No Comments


 

We’ve all been there at one time or another. We start off the interview excited and confident, but somewhere down the line it starts digressing into a failure. Don’t dismay and don’t give up. Regain your confidence and turn things around.

ONE: Blanking-out

For the job you’re applying for, you may be expected to have specific knowledge. If you blank-out at the question, instead of pretending to know the answer, you can call on their sympathy by admitting that you’re nervous and can’t remember at the moment. And instead, try to recount a similar situation in your experience to try to recall the answer to show that you can work under pressure.

 

TWO: You don’t know the answer

Like before, instead of pretending to know the answer by circumnavigating the question, tell them that you don’t know but immediately follow it with ‘how’ you would go about finding out the answer. This shows confidence, and problem solving skills.

 

THREE: Being incoherent

Sometimes our nerves get the better of us, and we end up saying absolutely nothing. Instead of letting it slide, show them that you are self-aware and address the issue. Possibly use humor to show them that you acknowledge that you were being incoherent and ask if you can try again.

 

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FOUR: Distracted interviewer

An interviewer might seem distracted because of a myriad of reasons: last minute meeting before the interview, a sudden problem in the office, or they haven’t had a chance to go over your resume. Be prepared for the possibility that they don’t have a copy of your resume by bringing a printed one and offering it. If that doesn’t seem to get the interviewer’s attention, genuinely ask if they would prefer to reschedule for a later time. More than likely they will welcome your flexibility and sympathy.

 

FIVE: Hostile interviewer

In the case of a hostile interviewer, don’t get flustered because this may be a test. Remain calm and polite and offer information on why you are the best candidate for the job if they aren’t interested in asking questions that elicit your best skills sets.

 

SIX: Awkward silence

Obviously you would have looked into the company’s website or other literature before you showed up for the interview. So prepare some questions that may not have been addressed in the website, annual reports or brochures. Ideally ask questions about the position you are applying for, the training program, advancement or promotion paths available. Remember to stay away from questions that have already been addressed in the website or job application.

 

Sources: Entrepreneur, everydaylife, pvamu

 

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