Newsletter - 2011 08
Brought to You By BMA Marketing
An inside look at how we handle Data Entry for Bowling Centers
Chris Swanson, Owner
Founded by Ray Tuttle
Check out our new video on how our free Data Entry service (it's included in our Merchant Coupon Program) converts piles of coupons into a usable list of valuable new bowler names, home addresses, phone numbers and email addresses.
Create a hot list of new League Bowler candidates, grow your customer email list, stay in touch, increase visit frequency. More info...
New Bowler Marketing Results
We are grateful for the opportunity to fill lanes in our client centers...
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What to Look for When Hiring an Intern
Hiring an intern to assist with your business can be a rewarding experience for both parties.
It gives your organization an opportunity to redistribute some of the workload while the successful intern gains firsthand experience and knowledge in a field he or she is interested in.
While it sounds like a no-fail venture, employing interns may not make sense for every business.
Following are some things to think about when determining if an intern is right for your business and, if so, what to look for in a candidate:
- Consider hiring an intern only if there is valuable work to be done within your organization or business. Coffee runs and taking the garbage out do not count. Keep in mind that an internship lasts, on average, between three and six months, and an intern will be unable to fulfill the responsibilities of a full-time position.
- An internship is meant to provide young people new to an industry with education and mentoring. Hire an intern only if you have the time and capability to teach and mentor.
- When looking for interns, determine what set of skills and applicable education candidates should have and advertise accordingly. Send your wanted listing to pertinent departments at universities.
- Internships can be unpaid, fully paid, for school credit or for a lump sum honorarium. When deciding upon compensation, consider the following: hours the intern will work at your business; the demands of the job; whether or not his or her current job or school life will be significantly impacted; what amount and level of value you'll provide as a mentor; and what businesses comparable to yours offer their own interns.
Keep Your Staff Engaged and See Your Profits Rise
Selections from the best articles seen online this month.
How to Hire an Executive Assistant
Christine Lagorio offers a guide for finding and hiring a good executive assistant (EA). Before beginning the hiring process, she says, it’s important to identify exactly what the position entails and to draw up a job description that includes a summary overview and a list of duties and responsibilities. The article goes on to outline what tasks an EA can be expected to take on, what skills are necessary and what qualifications an employer should look for.
How to Become a Social Entrepreneur
At age 28, Scott Harrison conceived the idea to launch Charity: Water, a nonprofit organization that delivers clean drinking water to more than 1 million people in 17 different countries. His experience as a social entrepreneur shows turning a passion into a successful nonprofit venture takes real business acumen.
Words That Work, by Frank Luntz
Frank Luntz is best known for the work he has done to help elect presidents, mostly on the Republican side of the spectrum. He is a master at understanding the power of words - not just to help politicians get votes, but also to help businesses thrive.
In this book, which is packed with corporate and political examples, Luntz says that it's not the words that are said that are important, it's what is actually heard and understood. And that means that the significance of various words culturally can have a huge effect on your message.
In the business context, for example, Luntz talks about Las Vegas promoting "gaming," not "gambling." The actual product didn't change, but the switch in words changed how people saw the industry. Similarly, "liquor" became "spirits" - erasing the negative connotations of one word with the uplifting sense of another. Many businesses could benefit from these kinds of changes.
Quotes by...Peter Lynch
The person that turns over the most rocks wins the game. And that’s always been my philosophy.
In this business if you’re good, you're right six times out of ten. You’re never going to be right nine times out of ten.
Go for a business that any idiot can run - because sooner or later, any idiot probably is going to run it.
Peter Lynch is an investor, best known for his books One Up on Wall Street and Beating the Street.
Are your employees engaged? Are they filled with purpose, passion and dedication? Do they feel appreciated? Studies by prominent business research and human resource consulting firms have revealed powerful links between employee engagement and corporate success. Employees who are engaged are more productive, customer-focused, safer, and less likely to malinger or to quit.
A recent report by Gallup International revealed that businesses in the top 24% of employee engagement had less turnover and significantly greater customer loyalty, profitability and revenues. The findings showed a strong correlation between engagement levels and age, role, level, tenure and trust in the organization. It pointed to training and career development opportunities as key drivers of job satisfaction.
In top-performing organizations, engagement is a strategic fundamental and a core business principle. Management's ongoing commitment to keeping employees engaged and excited about the work they do is a daily priority. Following are some tips for keeping employees engaged:
- Communicate expectations.
- Create personal relationships with employees.
- Ask for feedback, accept it graciously and express appreciation.
- Make sure employees have the tools and training they need.
- Train employees in problem-solving and conflict resolution.
- Empower employees to deal with issues and resolve problems that arise.
- Publicize success stories.
- Reward and recognize employees in meaningful ways.
- Talk about engagement.
FINANCE AND TECHNOLOGY
How Online Apps Can Take the Stress Out of Invoicing
Online invoicing applications offer many features that make accounts receivable quick and hassle-free. Today's invoicing tools are sophisticated, offering both transactional capability and intelligence, with dashboards and analytical tools that let you see where your money is coming from and where it's going. There are hundreds of products on the market, many targeted to the needs and budgets of small businesses and some specifically designed for certain industries or niche businesses. Most providers offer mobile device apps to complement their web-based products.
Many vendors offer free or very low-cost solutions to lure you into buying a subscription or introduce you to other products. When choosing an app, consider its capabilities, ease of use, ability to interface with other programs you use, training and support, along with cost. Following are a few of the top online invoicing apps:
Freshbooks: This is easy to use and integrates with other accounting and project management systems such as QuickBooks and Basecamp. In addition to standard features, it offers time-tracking and some other bells and whistles.
Invoices Made Easy: This is designed for small service trades, such as tax consultants, plumbers and landscapers. Standard features include an EasyMail service that sends invoices out by snail mail.
PaySimple: This targets merchants and focuses on recurring online payments, both invoices and payments, using credit card payments, e-checks, and online payment forms.
Simply Invoices: This is just what it says: simple.
Time59: This is designed specifically for attorney practices.
What's the Right Structure for Your Business?
Businesses can operate as sole proprietorships, partnerships or corporations.
A sole proprietorship is owned and run by a single individual. There is no legal distinction between the owner and the business. This is the simplest legal form, providing maximum control and minimum government interference. The owner makes all the decisions, is entitled to all profits and is responsible for all debts of the business. It is easy to start up and terminate a sole proprietorship as no documents, fees or legal expenses are required.
A disadvantage of a sole proprietorship is unlimited liability. Since the owner is responsible for all business debts, creditors can go after the owner's personal assets if the debts exceed the assets of the business.
A partnership is owned by at least two people and the profits and losses are divided among them on a percentage basis. The red tape involved in starting and dissolving a partnership is minimal. However, it's highly advisable to have a written partnership agreement that spells out the rights and responsibilities of each partner. Partners are jointly re¬sponsible for all debts incurred by the partnership.
A corporation offers advantages such as limited liability and the ability to raise capital by selling stock. The big disadvantages are taxation and complexity. Owners must pay taxes on the income the corporation earns and the income they earn from the business. For a small business, the cost of incorporating usually ranges from $500 to $1,500. Plus, owners bear the ongoing costs of preparing and filing state and federal reports.
BMA's Industry Partners
Contact our Industry Partners for immediate solutions. Also, when you select BMA to assist with filling lanes, you'll receive an exclusive email from us containing gifts and special offers from our partners...
BowlingIndustry.com - an online magazine + social networking community for bowling center owners, operators and professionals in the business of bowling.
BowlingMarketing.com - a complete bowling center marketing system that contains a ready to run Marketing Plan loaded with proven programs, timelines and task dates, customized material and weekly conference calls to drive and manage the process.
BowlingRewards.com - The Bowling Rewards program is a revolution in open play/league marketing and includes comprehensive database building features with electronic gift, cash back rewards and fundraising inside a single card.
Partywirks.com - convert your website visitors into buyers by offering online scheduling and buying capability.