Having Fun In Business

One of the major costs to any business, large or small, is attrition and defection of intellectual capital when employees leave.  There are significant costs to the business which affect the balance sheet, either directly or later on in the business cycle.  Here are just some of those:

  • Paperwork, legal/compliance, and severance or other costs incurred with the employee’s departure
  • Cost to find, recruit and hire new employees
  • Training new employees
  • Risk of the loss of competitive advantages when employees with industry contacts, intellectual property, good reputations, intangible assets (such as charisma and ability to network at trade shows), and strategic thinking skill leave the company
  • No guarantee that new employees will mesh well with existing employees, executives, the larger vision for the company or not make costly mistakes that would have been avoided by the previous employees


Again, this is just a starting list as there are many other costs.

One method to counter this is to generate enough fun in the job, along with financial incentives, to give the employees a way to make being a part of the company a part of their individual (and collective) identities.  Here is one company in Dallas which does fun, unique marketing projects for major corporations and entities across the USA:

They write about their experiences (such as here) and even participate in local metropolitan fun events like a “video race” (more here).   Does this mean that everyday business is stress-free or easy?  Obviously not, especially when selling an intangible such as “experience” with contacts at major corporations.  Things can change on a dime, so they have to handle the flexibility and remember that this is business, not art which has lasting meaning and identity.

Nonetheless, by traveling around the country and doing unique projects this company has been able to keep most of its employees over the last 4 years; and it has added quality, innovative employees.  Again, to help any business grow it must reduce its unnecessary expenses and grow both the top line and bottom line while growing (or maintaining) great quality for its customers.  This is a difficult task, so study businesses like these to extract elements which can help you in your business whenever you have the opportunity to do so.

Overlap Of Methods To Make The Phone Ring With New Customers

One of the challenges for many local businesses is to make the phone ring with brand new customers (or clients).  A real world referral, of course, is one of the best methods as such an endorsement tends to be almost impossible to beat.   When it comes to online marketing, however, there tends to be a significant amount of confusion especially in a major metropolitan market like Dallas Fort Worth – with over 6 million people in the region and growing.

There are so many methods, but they are not necessarily the top online marketing priority(ies) for a specific business and its intended market.  Here are just a few of the suggested ways to get the phone to ring more with new customers or clients:

  • Rank # 1 in the search engines’ organic rankings
  • Rank # 1 in the “Maps” (Places) rankings in the search engines
  • Purchase the traffic by first spot paid ad rankings in the search engines
  • Facebook traffic which is shared/liked
  • Paid ads within Facebook or Twitter, with hyper-targeted ad spending
  • YouTube videos with free traffic
  • Paid ads within YouTube
  • Ads appearing on relevant 3rd party websites, but seen only by those who are in your specific demographic/interest groups
  • Press releases
  • Image sites like Pinterest or Flickr
  • E-mail newsletter (E-zine) paid advertising
  • Guest posts/interviews


This is not an inclusive list, but it tends to be the areas usually recommended by established local internet marketing consultants.  The question is what should be done first in order to be cost-effective.

Here are some examples of what to do first, based on specific DFW local businesses:

  • A landscaper in McKinney should create optimized pages on his website to rank in the search engines for specific types of needs people have such as flower bed creation, luxury landscaping or commercial/retail landscaping.
  • A contractor who does remodeling (and finish outs) for condos, town homes, retail stores and restaurants in Downtown Dallas and the nearby neighborhoods should get into the property/neighborhood newsletters (e-zines).  He also needs to get involved with commercial development trade associations which have Downtown Dallas chapters.
  • A driving school opening its new location in a suburb of Dallas (still over 100,000 population) should get listed on the high school parent newsletters, get paid links on the local business websites visited by parents with high school kids, and do paid ads on relevant websites read by parents of high school aged kids – but the paid ads would only be seen by those whose IP addresses are in the zip codes near the new location.  Ranking well in Google Places (Maps) works well here too.
  • A company selling specialty meats online (such as hams, bacon, summer sausage, etc.) has both a national and local focus.  YouTube videos showcasing the meats and ranking # 1 for the “buyer intent” keywords (e.g. the keywords modified with wording such as “buy”, “online”, “by mail”, “free shipping”, etc.) can help here.  Paid ads for the same phrases in the search engines (e.g. AdWords Search Network) usually works here too.  Corporate orders (e.g. the Christmas hams for employees) also can justify paid ads within LinkedIn, and targeting human resources directors or others who make such buying decisions.
  • A semiconductor company in a Dallas suburb which specializes in custom antenna design for different types (passive, active, LTE, GPS, wireless, etc.) usually has international clients.  They don’t need to worry about local ads.  Getting endorsed in a guest post/interview by a trusted publication read by engineers is a great start.  Ranking in the top spots in the search engines for targeted keywords (e.g. “active antenna design”) is smart.  Ranking #1 in LinkedIn’s company search is great for national (and international) business-to-business (B2B) new business generation.
  • A print broker who has a poorly-functioning website needs to be endorsed on a local service-oriented website which permits better optimization.  It needs to be mobile friendly and makes it easy for a new client to click and call.  Paid ads on the search engines then can be suggested.  From there, LinkedIn marketing with local business forums and e-mail newsletter endorsements (or paid ads) within the local chamber of commerce outlets or other local business networking outlets is a smart move as well.
  • A local counselor in the northern Dallas suburbs can do hyper-targeted Facebook ads, especially targeting those who are interested in specific insurance carriers as well as zip code/age/interest demographics.  Ranking in the search engines for specific concerns (e.g. ADHD, anger management, anxiety, etc.) also helps as well.
  • A North Dallas local business which offers credit card processing and merchant services can rank in the search engines for specific towns or counties, especially for specialty keywords like “PCI compliant”, “online credit card processing”, and “mobile payment processing”.  B2B marketing, like mentioned for the print broker earlier, also works here.
  • A business in the North Dallas suburban area can offer help to those with low credit who need cars.  This tends to be a local service, but it also offers a national service which is an alternative to the costly car title loans.  Ranking # 1 in the search engines for those related keywords (both locally and nationally) is a good strategy.  From there, it should do paid ads on 3rd party websites where the specific keywords which are indicative of a reader who would be open to the alternative.  Press releases can work here as well, but the content must be “newsworthy”.


Feel free to leave your thoughts on other methods regarding the specific kinds of businesses listed.

Financial Services And Altruism

Often you don’t find genuine altruism in those heavily involved with the financial services industry.  Several reasons are bantered about, but here are some of the common ones:

  • Die-hard capitalists often forget about the needs of others during the busy day; and high-competition financial services can make professionals tired at the end of the day and just want to go home
  • If business is not going well, often time and money is spent working instead of spending time and money on others
  • The competitive nature of the financial services industry is such that it warrants more time spent studying and crafting one’s “competitive advantages” over other financial service professionals.  This is different than most industries where people go home after a shift or their agreed-upon hours, and therefore less time is available
  • Many other reasons

Nonetheless it is refreshing when you see someone who is the head of a boutique financial services firm (or similar status in the industry) genuinely care about the benefit of others.  One in particular based in the Dallas area is a co-founder of a student mentorship/leadership non-profit organization.  This particular organization offers leadership training and mentors to kids about to “age out” of foster care, roughly around the age of 18.

Often foster care kids, when becoming young adults, are missing the elements of having a true home.  Many end up destitute and risk being on drugs, getting involved in criminal activity, or similar life choices.  The founder of the organization decided to marshal resources and gather funding for mentors to help these kids get new perspectives and give them hope and skills as they pursue college or other post-high school endeavors.

A recent luncheon in Dallas permitted him the opportunity to speak to many in the area about the importance of this topic.  He emphasized how the kids can make significant strides and serve as inspiration for others who are facing challenges of similar magnitude.

Again, this is just one example of a situation where financial services professionals dedicate the time and resources to gather like-minded professionals and make a difference in the community.  If you have similar stories then please let us know, especially from the high-stress world of financial services or similar industries.

Better Understanding Attorneys

It is interesting to talk with an attorney who actually has day-to-day actions in multiple settings, rather than seeing the same types of cases day after day in the same office.  One such is my friend Heather who took the time to explain quite a lot to me the other day about the legal profession.

What made it interesting is that I didn’t realize the scope of what one attorney may be asked to do in a given day.  She also has the tasks of running her practice which means she needs to stay up to date on:

  • Continuing education credits
  • Other cases which occur in the practice areas in which she specializes
  • State-wide and national law changes
  • Marketing
  • Compliance
  • Motivating staff
  • Attending seminars
  • Networking
  • Volunteering

This is all in addition to her other duties.  One day she can be can be helping a client with a divorce filing, another day she can be working with public defenders in another NJ county, or she can help someone a few towns over such as someone needing a DUI attorney in Roxbury New Jersey.

What makes all of this interesting is that she also is an athletic competitor, so the ability to switch mental gears is impressive.  That background helps her better understand the scenarios in which she spends time with her clients each day plus she understands the need to demand more of herself.

I spent some time with her and started to understand the magnitude of what happens each day.  Other professions require the ability to act at a high level, in different situations and in different towns, each day; but few professions come close to what she handles day in and day out.

If you ever get the opportunity to spend time with such an attorney in your area then take the opportunity then highly consider doing so.  You will gain a new insight into the legal profession and begin to shed your mind of the false notions that many people have by watching attorneys on TV shows or in the movies.

High Density Racks – Opportunities On How You Have The Chance To Boost Pallet Storage Inside Any Warehouse

Pallet racks have been established for a few generations. Many know how to use this type of racking. But what if we want to obtain more storage within the same amount of space? What are your choices?

Here are many of the options for you:

Situation select pallet rack:  Virtually all pallets are unique, or with little or no repeat of stock keeping unit numbers. You need to have good choice capability.

As far as the rack types are concerned, you’re locked into normal select pallet racking. You might, however, use narrow aisle forklifts along with your select pallet racking. Most of us run with having a 12’ aisle for the sit-down, 8-9’ which has a standup, and 5’ with a turret truck.

Situation drive in or drive thru racking features redundancy with the SKU numbers.  You may wish to consider drive in racking for LIFO or drive through rack for First In First Out. These drive-in racks may be for 2 pallets deep or ten deep or more. Depending on how many SKU’s you might have and how many of each pallet per SKU which you typically have readily available.  Drive in rack could help reduce the amount of aisles you’ve got by over 50% or even greater.

Situation push back rack has many SKU’s, with a small percentage of pallets per SKU. You will retain significant selectivity while still lowering aisle space by over 50 percent. While simultaneously reducing aisle space, you additionally boost forklift productivity and having the driver not being forced to drive into the racks like you would with drive in rack. Typically, push back racking runs 2-5 pallets in depth.

Using situation pallet flow is a reasonable method in times where there is a constant flow of units. For this option, put the pallets in the back end and pull it out at the front. This is by definition FIFO.  This option is fantastic for a forced discipline of rotation calendar date. Using this strategy saves your company a great deal in forklift productivity.  This may be two pallets deep or thirty if you have enough overhead space.

Making the transition may not be easy, so if you need help to liquidate used warehouse equipment and pallet rack then click the link to discuss your specific situation.

When Considering Oklahoma Rural Real Estate For Sale

If you are looking for the various Oklahoma ranches for sale, you will need to know the basics that type of ranch you need or need.  For example in Texas there are cattle ranches, hunting ranches, ranches with an emphasis toward crops, those by having an emphasis more toward lake and waterfront activities, and there are even other kinds of ranches.  Knowing this will aid narrow down the sort of property you need.  Be sure to have as long-term an image as you can as a way to accommodate loved ones coming to the exact property, if you will be selling livestock or other products made out of your land, and then any sort of needs you might have for other business or family purposes

Since Oklahoma is a vast state, you also will have kinds of properties inside the same category.  There are some more arid properties in some areas in the state.  Other regions have an overabundance of forest topography.  Yet others have an overabundance of water-based emphasis.  For example, if you desire to raise cattle then sell them for profit then you’ll need entry to water sources, supplies, grass and other factors including available labor.

Once you’ve chosen the kind of ranch you want, as well as the region of Oklahoma in which you would like to start looking, then you will need to consider personal factors.  For example, proximity to quality medical facilities is a bit more important for those people with children or those that have higher risks of illness.  Some members of the family who will be living on the house may want to be in the hour’s drive of the major Texas city for night life and entertainment about the weekends.  You also will want to consider schools in the region should you plan on having young children living around the ranch.

Finally, be likely to talk with your qualified financial professionals.  You will want to know about homestead laws, any subsidies for farms or livestock ranches, tax structuring, etc.  Even when you get the sort of ranch you need, in the region of Oklahoma you want, you still may face substantial taxes or other expenses if you have not planned for the financial situation.  While the romance of moving for a own personal ranch is a powerful dream for most, you desire the reality of the problem to be as sound as is possible make it.

Hopefully the following tips will help you obtain a better comprehension of what is needed when you are looking for Oklahoma ranch land for sale.  Even if you have experience with ranches elsewhere, the state has enough differentiation in its laws that it’s still a good idea to acquire professional help that will help you make a sound decision dealing with your particular scenario.

Jobs In The Trucking Industry

I was talking the other day with my friend Carlton.  He was telling me about a friend of his who has a unique service which has its own set of difficulties.  His friend helps people in the long haul trucking industry, and each nuance actually requires higher levels of specificity and attention than I first thought.

There are trucking niches which require different licenses, overall driving skill, as well as some requiring specialty skills.  For example, someone who drives the truck may not necessarily need to load and unload the truck.  Some positions, however, do require skill in that area — some of which are expected and some of which are deemed add-on costs to the customer.

Of course there are other factors to consider based on regions of the country, such as dealing with unions.  Licensing requirements vary from state to state.  For example, if someone is qualified for one of the available Fort Worth flatbed trucking jobs due to his or her experience in Texas, the skills are not guaranteed to be transferable to another state which may require union membership, alternative licensing, or even a different set of skills.

The physical condition of the trucking job applicant also must come into consideration.  For example, driving trucks at high altitudes may not be appropriate for some applicants due to inability to acclimate to the lower oxygen levels and/or inability to operate at full efficiency outside of the truck in cold and harsh weather.

In all it was a fascinating discussion and opened my eyes to the various rigors behind the scenes for both the short-haul and long-haul trucking industry.

A Different Approach To Concrete Repair

My friend Mark offers a different kind of concrete repair than most concrete contractors offer.  It is called mud jacking and a similar service is called slab jacking.  The reason why he offers this is because of the types of isolated repairs which tend to be needed, rather than complete concrete tear-outs and new installations.  The latter can get very expensive quickly, especially in cases like a driveway repair or new installation.

What he does is help to “raise” the concrete by drilling holes in a particular slab and pumping in the proper mixture of chemicals/elements. This begins to raise the concrete to the proper level.  His skill is in not:

  • raising the damaged slab to far up
  • cracking/breaking the slab, thus warranting a full repair

Homeowners tend to like his approach because it saves them money and time to fix the problem.  It works on driveways and these types of areas:

  • sidewalks
  • patio decks
  • pool decks

Here are some images from a recent job where his crew performed concrete raising for a sunken driveway near Arlington Texas.

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The Functions Which A Print Broker Performs

A print broker frequently is either a commercial printer or a consultant trusted by a commercial printing company who acts as a print manager.  This relationship between your business customer and also the discount printer helps their customers receive great-looking print materials but usually at a lower price as opposed to clients could easily get if they acted upon their own.  The question is whether a print broker can provide far better quality compared to a nearby store which is marketing discount print services.

Often the print broker is capable of that better overall price being sought from the client.  The reasons why is that the print broker (print manager) is normally an outsourced service so the printer does not have to get the fixed overhead and rates needed to employ the print broker as an in-house sales rep.  The lowering of overhead allows the business to focus on its core first step toward printing excellent materials.  Much such as an affiliate program, printed manager gets their pay cheque if they brings actual business to the printing company.

Remember that the company benefits not only by not having to purchase a salary and insurance, however the cost savings get passed along further because the local printer doesn’t have to fund computers, phone lines, sales travel, along with other costs associated with in-house sales employees.  The company also doesn’t need to risk spending further costs on employee training.  This is especially true if there happens to be high turnover or if a rival company gets a sales rep to switch and begin selling for that rival printer.

The end customer also is likely to benefit for most situations which has a print broker for the reason that broker can act in the best interests in the client.  A retail printer might not have all of the equipment, manpower, or skill set needed for specific aspects of a client’s job.  By passing it onto someone else the printers often require a “cut in the action” for the referral hence the costs get passed for the client.  A print broker can farm out a client’s request among multiple printers, skipping multi-layer expenses, and keeping the savings in the client’s pockets.

When you’ve got some time, require a print broker to lunch and have to learn more about what he or she does.  You could be surprised at some from the opportunities you’ve got which were not obvious in the beginning.   This is for virtually any type of local business ranging from a retail location providing a service (such as a beauty salon) to a trade performed at someone’s residence on the exterior (such as a residential roof repair company) or the inside of the home (e.g a carpet cleaning service) to a place where you drop off items to be fixed (such as a local furniture repair shop) to studio you go to to exercise (such as a boxing and MMA gym) all the way to licensed professionals such as a doctor, CPA or financial service professional.  Regarding the latter, a good print broker will help you stay compliant with any state or national regulations if you help him/her become aware of compliance requirements.  This would be applicable to business cards, mail outs, brochures and other print materials given away at trade shows.

Basics Of Medicaid And The Program

Medicaid exists as a health insurance program that has been started to help citizens and their family members with minimal monthly revenues. Becoming eligible for Medicaid just isn’t set on an individual’s age. If you want to be eligible for a Medicaid benefits, specific income levels must be met. These mandates are very different for each state.

Traditionally, someone must receive monthly income failing to meet the poverty line and also have defined assets beneath $2000 to be eligible to benefit from Medicaid. For roughly 50% of the states, Medicaid was boosted to add single men included in the Affordable Care Act.

Whenever someone is on Medicaid, the program should factor in the total, or just about all, of the costs tied in with visiting a physician, visits to an hospital or receiving prescription medications. There should not be a requirement for additional insurance coverage.

In addition to hospital care, citizens who receive benefits from Medicaid may go through some difficulty locating a private physician who will schedule appointments them. Typically this does not apply to Medicare recipients.

While Medicare doesn’t pay for custodial care at homes for the elderly, Medicaid benefits frequently are employed by recipients and their families to cover the expenses associated with nursing homes. Those who have low financial resources often get Medicaid to pay for the duration of the time that the benefits recipient stays at the elder care facility.

There exists a good degree of confusion dealing with Medicaid.  If you have the means then meet with a trusted Medicaid planning attorney or other attorney who is proficient in elder law in the state of anyone you know who needs clarity on Medicaid benefits.

Hard To Find Boxing Training Guidance

Whether or not you love the sport of boxing, you can’t deny a few things:

  • the training is arduous
  • the risk of injury is high
  • the athletes must have an immense pain tolerance to compete
  • it is a different style of training rather than traditional weight training, cardio and some stretching often found in most gyms
  • there is a “science” to the sport
  • one must control his/her emotions and adrenaline in order to succeed in the sport

Many people have taken to boxing as a means to get in shape quickly, and it does that.  Also, the “upper body” cardio is much different than found in most gyms around the country because of the emphasis on lower-body cardio and lots of “core training”… typically neglecting the upper body and upper extremities.

George runs one of the Dallas boxing gyms serving the entire DFW area, and he comes from a long boxing background out of Eastern Europe.  Of interest, he has a set of books he showed me from the old Soviet days on the art of boxing.  His belief is that the U.S. doesn’t have a systematic way of training boxers as rigid and systematic as Russia and Eastern Europe have; and that is why U.S. boxers have to rely on significantly more natural talent than their same-weight counterparts to be able to win fights.

Another philosophical difference he said is that the Eastern European, Russian and Asian influence is designed to win even if winning ugly.  The U.S. is motivated by showmanship, charisma, talking ability and the ability to sell pay-per-view purchases in order to have the promoters and sponsors get a good ROI.  Here are some of the videos of his training sessions and his fighters:

Dealing With International Short Term Trading Firms

Owning a stock trading software platform for Chinese traders, dealing in US equities, is just not an easy task.  There are a couple of factors which come into play.  If you’re running this operation you should have all create things like market data feeds which have the rights to get distributed internationally, very fast data lines and servers in reputable data centers, and all of your order execution servers build so that their orders register as valid trades to the stock exchange.

For the actual traders themselves, you’ll have to have your trading software accommodated wherever possible into the various languages.  Since there exists more than one sort of Chinese language, you would need to have a front end platform in the primary language that you have lots of traders.  You would not need to locate data that may be translated into Chinese and also possible, minus the numerical data along with the market symbols.

Regarding trading, you would not need to possess the software be able to possess the ability to make sure that the numbers result in currency exchanges.  Even if this is to become handled about the back end using preferred broker, they still will want to know that current intra-day exposure contrary to the current exchange rate.  This is not necessarily easy to program, so locating a reputable software which can this may be challenging.

Finally, you will need the ability to narrow any stocks not permitted by the country.  China may have regulations about which symbols may be traded by their residents, as well as the same may apply to countries.  By having brokerage firm management software which manages the symbols which can be (or aren’t) allowed to be traded by the certain trading firm or trading account then you can definitely confirm that you have the compliance issues under control.