Tag Archives: entrepreneurs

Small Business Malarkey

big-business-bailout-plan

Small Business Talk

I’ve worked with many small businesses throughout the years and for the most part the experience has been beneficial to me in realizing GA certain salient point – I either don’t really want to work with them or makes me want to focus on my own business (which is small). By definition, ‘small businesses’ are exactly what their title implies – so this causes resources limitations, and more annoyingly the hustling by them to try and get you to do work for free – which I hear to often. Small Businesses can at times use the tactic of “do this job for us, and down the road it may open up the opportunity for more work” – I’m sure that many entrepreneurs and creative professionals have heard this line in many ways and forms:
– You know if you do this for us, well it can be the start of a partnership
– If you do this and it turns out well, I know several other businesses that may require your services

The ‘Dangling Carrot’ works as you (the rabbit) is susceptible to chasing this carrot because we want to be successful – and we want more carrots of course.

Now don’t get this post confused with myself not understanding that small businesses are the backbone and core of this economy – and heck, I’m a small business owner myself, though I haven’t really tried to exploit others to work for free for me, guess my thing with ethics and doing the ‘right thing’, kinda gets in the way.

If you have a small business story to share, please post in the comments.

.::LiBM::.

Time Mgnmt for the Yuppy


Image source Cartoon Stock

Time Management for the Yuppy

Techniques to get the most done

The Yuppies (Young Urban Professionals), especially the creative ones, their Achilles heel has to be that their isn’t enough time in a day to match and/or sustain their ideas. Juggling work, school, family, and social relationships, the Yuppy can at times feel flustered; upstairs, the mind is working at light speed, but there just does not seem to be an abundant amount of time to keep up with the ideas. So the key to this problem, must be trying to organize the ideas into manageable tasks and goals, then creating a plan to attack such. At times, that may be easier said than done, so I have compiled a list of some practiced time management techniques that can help make you the ambitious, creative, and innovative individual that you seek to be:

Contemporary Time Management

First generation: reminders (based on clocks and watches, but with computer implementation possible) can be used to alert of the time when a task is to be done.
Second generation: planning and preparation (based on calendar and appointment books) includes setting goals.
Third generation: planning, prioritizing, controlling (using a personal organizer, other paper-based objects, or computer- or PDA-based systems) activities on a daily basis. This approach implies spending some time in clarifying values and priorities.
Fourth generation: being efficient and proactive (using any tools above) places goals and roles as the controlling element of the system and favors importance over urgency.

For the Yuppy, and much of the younger generation, I think we are currently in the fourth generation where we use the tools in the first to third generation, and we prioritize goals based on its significance to its overall effect or processes.

Task lists are often tiered. The simplest tiered system includes a general to-do list (or task-holding file) to record all the tasks the person needs to accomplish, and a daily to-do list which is created each day by transferring tasks from the general to-do list.

Task List Organization by Prioritization:

An early advocate of “ABC” prioritization was Alan Lakein (See Books below.). In his system “A” items were the most important (“A-1″ the most important within that group), “B” next most important, “C” least important.
A particular method of applying the ABC method assigns “A” to tasks to be done within a day, “B” a week, and “C” a month.
To prioritize a daily task list, one either records the tasks in the order of highest priority, or assigns them a number after they are listed (“1″ for highest priority, “2” for second highest priority, etc.) which indicates in which order to execute the tasks. The latter method is generally faster, allowing the tasks to be recorded more quickly.

ABC analysis

This technique that has been used in business management for a long time is the categorization of large data into groups. These groups are often marked A, B, and C—hence the name. Activities are ranked upon these general criteria:

A – Tasks that are perceived as being urgent and important.
B – Tasks that are important but not urgent.
C – Tasks that are neither urgent nor important.
Each group is then rank-ordered in priority. To further refine priority, some individuals choose to then force-rank all “B” items as either “A” or “C”. ABC analysis can incorporate more than three groups. ABC analysis is frequently combined with Pareto analysis.

Pareto analysis

This is the idea that 80% of tasks can be completed in 20% of the disposable time. The remaining 20% of tasks will take up 80% of the time. This principle is used to sort tasks into two parts. According to this form of Pareto analysis it is recommended that tasks that fall into the first category be assigned a higher priority. The 80-20-rule can also be applied to increase productivity: it is assumed that 80% of the productivity can be achieved by doing 20% of the tasks. If productivity is the aim of time management, then these tasks should be prioritized higher.

POSEC method

POSEC is an acronym for Prioritize by Organizing, Streamlining, Economizing and Contributing. The method dictates a template which emphasizes an average individual’s immediate sense of emotional and monetary security. It suggests that by attending to one’s personal responsibilities first, an individual is better positioned to shoulder collective responsibilities.

PRIORITIZE-Your time and define your life by goals.
ORGANIZING-Things you have to accomplish regularly to be successful. (Family and Finances)
STREAMLINING-Things you may not like to do, but must do. (Work and Chores)
ECONOMIZING-Things you should do or may even like to do, but they’re not pressingly urgent. (Pastimes and Socializing)
CONTRIBUTING-By paying attention to the few remaining things that make a difference. (Social Obligations)

In the end, it comes down in really spitting out all of your ideas fully, in its totality, and then methodically attacking each task until its completion – easier said than done, trust me I know, but equipped with the right tools, and the right mindset, and a reduction in the wrong stresses/stressors, any task can be meet.

.:: LiBM ::.

Workplace Etiquette for the Yuppy

Workplace Etiquette for the Yuppy
Some tips for getting through the day

The Yuppy (Young Urban Professional) is constantly on the go; most times though, the Yuppy needs to resort to a full-time job in order to fund their projects. However, the Yuppy has to be careful and walk that fine line of being productive at work, and being productive for their business. Thus, I thought I would share a few tips with my fellow Yuppielites.

Cycler
alt+tab (windows) OR apple+tab (mac)

You have more important things to do than prepare the 3rd-quarter report, you need to check your gmail and facebook. Instead of making it look bait by using your mouse to click back to the work your supposed to do, using alt+tab on the keyboard quickly changes your active window in a smooth manner.

IT Connect

Your IT Department is one of your greatest resources at work, befriend one of them as they can give you valuable Intel and help. The IT department can grant you special privileges, advise you what sites not to visit, and give you a heads-up on ‘crackdowns’.

Avoiding the IDC Symptom

The IDC symptom can be defined as “I Don’t Care”, and is developed when your co-workers start talking to you about trite details: ‘My kids hockey games’, ‘this boss is incompetent because …’, ‘did you watch that show last night’, and so on. My initial, instinctual response is ‘I really don’t care’, and ‘why are you talking to me’, but since we need this job to generate income and living, we need to avoid the IDC’s. Some common ways to avoid the IDC is:- Smile and nod: very effective, but can be deadly because it implies that you are actually intrigued in the conversation, and it shows that you are engaged.- Hmm, ok, wow: also very effective, alludes to you being not only responsive, but implies that you are listening to their every note and syllable

Outlook
Outlook is the enterprise e-mail application that most businesses use because of its powerful Exchange Server (even though Mozilla Thunderbird is better). I know you may have some documents to work on, and opening up MS Word may seem very suspicious as you may have to do a lot of ‘cycling’, however, Outlook can be used as a word processor and has some useful features such as ‘tasks’ and ‘notes’. Better yet, if you are working on a document, compose it in an e-mail, so that even if someone walks by, it looks like you are composing a work-related email.

Punctuality
This really shouldn’t be a point, but its important that you start on time, and leave on time. Because as with all work environments, there are snitches and informers – don’t give them anything to use against you.

With that said, you are the future of tomorrow, get ahead today … at work.

.:: d.b ::.

You’re a Yuppie when …

  

You’re a Yuppie when …
Virtues: business, entrepreneurs, revolt against the system, technology

The term yuppie (short for “young urban professional” or “young upwardly-mobile professional”) refers to a market segment whose consumers are characterized as self-reliant, financially secure individualists. So this is an interesting list of some signs of a yuppie.

You know when you’re a yuppie when …

– you go to the club to do more networking than ‘picking up’

– you save gas & meal receipts so that you can file them for your income tax ‘business expenses’

– you have a smartphone w/ an accompanying over-priced data plan

– you switch from hotmail to gmail

– sleep starts to become a luxury

– T.V viewing is a luxury

– Starbucks becomes a place for business

– you’re at work, and all you can think about is the amount of work you have to do after work

– economics and financial markets are suddenly more interesting

– Social networking sites are more for networking and promoting your business than hooking up w/ old friends & finding new ones

– you stopped putting songs as your voice mail message

– you do your work @ work, while still doing your employers work

– you use a sick day not because your sick or to hook up with your partner, but to do work

– you feel guilty when you are doing nothing

– your only ‘downtime’ is during your commute

– your mind is always racing with new ideas and business ventures

– you consult your blackberry/PDA before you make time with your significant other, friends, and family

 

If you have one or multiple attributes from this list, then you may be a Young Urban Professional that is taking a detour on the trail of life that the system provides and creating your own path.

 

Go on young trailblazer, blackberry in hand.
.:: d.b

Starblocks

StarBlocks
“The culture of the coffee-stop empire.”
This is just an observatory piece of being at a Starbucks on a Friday night in the T Dot. My unorthodox biz partners & I, decked in modern hip-hop attire; hoodies, loose fitting jeans, and portable mp3 players walk into a Starbucks in one of the moderate-to-affluent parts of our city (* Note, I don’t know about your city, but there are no Starbucks in our hoods). Naturally, when 3 big black guys walk into such an establishment, there are the usual quick glances away from us, and awkward pauses in their conversations with each other. Which I understand, sadly, because you know, we are out of our element – however I’m not writing about that … been there, done that, ya dig?

So after getting hot beverages that were obtained/stolen/exploited from Africa (topic for another day), we sat down & got to business. After getting work done & cracking jokes, it hit me that this Starbucks was jumping: big line-ups & the cash register, friends coming in rocking the Hollister, Abercrombie & Fitch, and American Eagle, and dudes rocking the California Beach Boy look that Starbucks is into a bit more than selling coffee. Some patrons were studying amidst elevator & jazz rhythmics, while other patrons were discussing the previous week’s events with their friends. What was interesting, besides the fact that they were predominantly white, is that they dressed similar, represented the “Millennial” generation – cohort 1 & 2, and all embraced & understood (consciously or not) the point of this piece. Starbucks is not about selling coffee, Starbucks sells social experiences. People literally were dressing up, pulling up in upscale vehicles, and not just to order marked-up coffee, but to meet friends, gossip, engage each other, pretty much to ‘connect’.

This is just my logic of the $7.8 billion dollar a year coffee shop, and why they nicely decorate their interior with earth tone colors, play non-popular music, and use distinct language (grandé, tall).

So now I guess I know why they looked @ us the way they did; its not the usual racial prejudice mixed with a dash of stereotyping.

We did not fit in with their social experience & the cultural norms that come with it.

But F*** ‘em anyway, I’m about re-defining the box, not assimilating to it, bitches!