Does Discount Web Hosting Compromise Customer Service?

Discount web hosting may sound like a great deal when you first

hear about it, but there are definitely some things you need to

know about discount web hosting and free web hosting before you

choose a web host for your website. While some discount web

hosting options may be good for business, many discount web

hosting and free web hosting services are more intended for

personal websites rather than for business websites because their

capabilities and reliability are not necessarily suited for the

business user.

With any business time is money, even for internet businesses and

home-based businesses. For a retail store, any time they are not

open for shoppers, they are missing out on potential sales and

related revenues. One of the main benefits of internet business

is that when your business is internet-based with an automated

sales process, your business can be open twenty-four hours a day,

seven days a week, three-hundred and sixty-five days a year, even

on holidays.

Since your website is your “store” so to speak,

anytime your website is down it is literally like your store is

closed. Plain and simple, closed stores result in lost sales.

Thus, it is critical to an internet business for your web host to

be reliable with at least ninety-nine to one-hundred percent

uptime, even if you use discount web hosting.

Many new website owners make some pretty simple mistakes and

unknowingly, they actually jeopardize the effectiveness of their

website which diminishes the website’s potential. One of the

major mistakes is not taking important things into consideration

when selecting a web host. Discount web hosting and free web

hosting usually sounds like a good idea and many think that

hosting their website through their internet service provider is

a logical option. However, there is much more than cost to

consider when choosing a web hosting service.

Some discount web hosting packages may be sufficient for your

business. The only way to make an informed decision regarding

your web hosting options is to review the options and to compare

the costs, benefits and potential problems. When comparing web

hosts here are some things to find out about:

1. The speed of the web hosting servers and the bandwidth

provided through the hosting packages

2. The space provided for

various hosting packages

3. Whether or not the web host provides

a control panel for self-serve, web-based administration of your

website

4. The availability of server logs and reports that will

aid you in managing your website and marketing efforts

5. Email

services and email limitations

6. The web host’s back-up policies

and procedures

7. The web host’s data retrieval policies and

procedures

8. The web host’s reliability in terms of uptime and

relative downtime

9. The web host’s longevity in the business of

web hosting and their reputation

10. The availability of options

such as CGI, SSH and FTP access and compatibility or availability

of various scripts and software

Generally, a company that specializes in commercial web hosting

for businesses is more reliable and offers greater web space,

speed, reliability and options than do free or discount web

hosting services. Internet service providers often offer discount

web hosting services to internet service subscribers as a method

for adding value to their standard services. Since the discount

web hosting is a secondary, and not the primary service they

offer, their web hosting services are not generally as advanced

as those provided by web hosting specialists and frequently

discount web hosting provided by internet service providers is

not incredibly reliable because the internet service provider’s

bandwidth is stretched thin since its primary purpose is to

provide internet service, not to host websites.

Bi Dating Online

Have you ever tried online dating? Maybe you have had some good experiences and perhaps you have had some encounters that were not so positive. The chances are that the positive ones are enough for you to keep trying until you find that person that you click with.

If you are bisexual, you will probably be looking for the best dating site for people who share your passions and who are also looking for like-minded individuals.

The beauty of specialist dating sites is that there is no need for complicated explanations about your sexuality. You can feel confident that the people who are waiting to meet you understand perfectly what you are looking for in a partner.

Bisexuality is often misunderstood by both heterosexuals and the gay community. Being able to relax and be your self is a huge bonus when it comes to online dating.

When creating your profile, try to inject optimism and humor, but don’t be self-depreciating or vain. Try to strike a good balance and be as honest as you can, that will make you stand out from the crowd more than saying that you have been told by others that you are attractive!

So many profiles are dull and rehashed. Make sure that yours is fun to read and makes potential dates want to get to know you better. Put the best of yourself in to it to get the best responses back. It is best to keep things light and easy rather than launching into your life story.

Most good bi dating sites will let you sign up for free so that you can get a general idea of the calibre of their members before you make a financial commitment. Another thing to take into consideration is the extras that the site has to offer, such as forums, chat, and a messaging facility.

Things such as advice, news and support are also available on the best bi dating sites. It is also good to read about other’s experiences, as being bisexual can be so isolating for some of us. The whole purpose of being on a dating site is not for some salacious kick, but to get to know others who we can relate to. Whether this is as friends, lovers or partners is up to the individual.

Whatever else you get from it, hopefully you will have fun, get lots of messages in you inbox, and look forward to logging in every day.

How to Make a Fixed Home Theater Projector Screen

If you are planning to setup a home theater system, it is extremely important to remember that the projection screen is an equally important component of the entire system to guarantee an enjoyable viewing experience. It is, therefore, recommended that you do a thorough research on the various available options before finalizing a projection screen for your home theater system.

There are different types of projector screens available in the market, but, the one that will work for your home theater system depends on several aspects such as the projector, the amount of light in the room, distance between projector and the screen as well as the viewing angle.

Fixed projection screens

Permanent or fixed projection screens are generally seen in cinema halls or homes where a room has been designated as a dedicated home theater room, which means that unlike pull-down screens, the fixed projector screens cannot be retracted. However, fixed projector screens have the advantage of giving out a clearer picture than some of the other commonly used projection screens.

Building a fixed projector screen

Although the fixed projector screens are costly, you can conveniently make one of these at home for the same viewing experience and save tons of money. Making a fixed projector screen at home is not as difficult as you might think. All you need is the right equipment and a little bit of knowledge on using certain basic tools.

Building the Frame: The first step in designing your own fixed projector screen is to make a frame that will support the fixed projector screen’s fabric.

Although plywood and wooden boards are good base material for a frame, certain wood types such as pine should be avoided owing to their excessive flexibility.

Take extra care and get all your measurements right to avoid any complex last moment modifications. It is advisable to strengthen the corners with hard wood and reinforce these with a lot of screws to make sure it fits properly. If all these steps are taken care of properly, you should have a frame that can rival any of the best.

Building the screen: Once the frame is ready, the next thing to do is to build the actual screen that will be attached to the frame.

The screen can be created using a fabric called curtain blackout cloth, which can be found at any of the fabric stores. This type of cloth has one side similar to plastic while the other side resembles regular fabric.

The material should always be bought a little more than what is actually needed to leave room for corrections. Another thing you will need is a durable stapler that will be used to fasten the screen onto the wooden frame. Hold the cloth tightly over the wooden frame and lock it with the help of a few staples.

After the screen has been stapled at all corners and the excess cloth cut from the curves, your fixed projector screen should be ready to put up on the wall.

The Human Resources Outsourcing Solution for Small Business

As the economy continues to improve and stabilize, employers have begun refocusing their efforts on growth and profitability. Many have begun hiring new staff as evidenced by the slowly dipping national unemployment rate. Others are using the time to restructure and regroup, turning to activities that have been neglected during the previous three years. Developing new products, capitalizing on burgeoning sales opportunities, or investigating new financial and banking relationships are just a few of the actions employers are taking to gain traction in the strengthening economy.

In almost every organization, it is the employees that drive their success. From growth and product development, to customer service and quality assurance, it is the people who will ultimately have the greatest impact on the company’s future profitability and stability. A key to business success in today’s environment will be concentrating on improving the human resources systems within the organization: developing and motivating their employees, protecting their companies against employment lawsuits, and researching more efficient and cost effective HR systems.

The obstacles faced by most businesses are the limitation of time, resources, and manpower to effectively improve their HR infrastructure. The level of expertise and know-how required to impact the HR systems is usually beyond their means. More often than not, these critical areas are left by the wayside as other tasks dominate management’s time and energy.

The HR Outsourcing Solution

A solution that has been growing in popularity over the past decade has been to bypass the conflict completely, by outsourcing the complex, time consuming, or unproductive tasks relating to employee administration. The Human Resources Outsourcing industry has continued to grow in recent years, despite the global recession.

Human Resources Outsourcing can take on many appearances, from complete end-to-end processes, to specific, discreet functions. But in the end, they all share the same principle: by entrusting non-core, non-revenue generating tasks to an outside expert or firm, the business can comfortably focus on other critical areas, assured their human resources systems will be managed professionally and efficiently.

The HRO firm employs teams of experts in a wide range of disciplines. It functions as the business’s off-site HR department, handling all employment related tasks in a more timely and cost-effective manner. Human Resources Outsourcing services can include any, or all, of the following services:

  • Labor law compliance
  • Employment administration
  • Forms and documentation
  • Management and employee training
  • Payroll and tax services
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance
  • Safety consulting
  • Employee benefit packages
  • Retirement Planning
  • Recruiting

Better Insurance Products and Rates

In addition to the valuable services they provide, an HR Outsourcing firm can offer their clients economies-of-scale, providing more robust employee benefit plans at extremely competitive rates. HRO firms provide this by pooling thousands of employees into a group plan, enabling them to negotiate rates and plan options usually available to only their larger competition. Now, an employer with just 20, 30, or 50 employees can offer their employees a robust benefit offering typically found within a big corporation with hundreds or thousands of employees.

Finally, workers’ compensation insurance is also negotiated on similar terms. The HRO can present millions of dollars of workers’ compensation premiums to the carrier, instead of just thousands. This enables the HRO firm to pass the group discounts to their smaller employers, often resulting in significant insurance premium savings.

Whether your company is looking for added human resources support, or assistance in reducing your employment risks, or simply investigating alternative insurance products, human resource outsourcing should be given serious consideration. More often than not, the savings experienced through Human Resources Outsourcing offset the service fees, making HRO a win-win relationship.

Different Options On Designer Jewelry

A lot of designer jewelry choices can be found at jewelry shops with excellent street addresses but designers would like those designs designed to anybody who wants them, wherever they live. They’ll make these designer jewelry pieces obtainable through online jewelry stores that bear their name to allow people from all over the world to possess a designer jewelry piece that is individually their own.

Another great advantage is the refund. In case things do not go as designed and you don’t have the success you were hoping for, you can return products and you’ll get your cash back. Hence you’re sure that you won’t lose your money even though your results don’t satisfy your requirements. Since the issues of the costs have been removed, there is the problem of the quality of the products. At this chapter you have nothing worry about. Only good quality materials can be used for the fabrication of the items. The commitment put in every design is similar to nothing you’ve ever seen and all these products are submitted to a deep meditation process before they head for the customer.

After a while, the price for those designs will definitely rise but some designers won’t ever notice the fame and fortune that jewelry can bring into their lives. People place great value on the jewelry they wear. Most choose to wear a particular precious metal and will search designer jewelry sites for pieces produced from platinum, 18-karat or white gold, and active people might only wear titanium designer jewelry because that precious metal compares to the active lifestyle they like.

The Very Pleasing Network – VPN Services

VPN is short for Virtual Private Network and is a technology that creates an encrypted secure connection over a less secure network like the Internet. The benefit is that it provides the security that the network on which it is based cannot provide. It uses the internet to transport data. Many such networks can be created by using different systems incorporating encryption and other security mechanisms to ensure that only authorized users can access the network and information cannot be intercepted by the others. It is like a tunnel built to transmit data between a network of say an organization and a remote user. It hides your data and IP address.

VPN Protocols

The main VPN network protocols are:

IPSec – Developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force, to secure exchanges of data at the IP layer. It is widely used for creating VPNs

PPTP- Point to Point Tunneling Protocol for VPNs developed jointly by Microsoft, US Robotics and several remote access vendor companies. It is now obsolete because of security concerns

L2TP – Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol is an extension of the PPP Protocol (PPP, which establishes connectivity between 2 nodes or computers) L2TP allows ISPs to operate VPNs

SSL – Secure Sockets Layer is the commonly used one nowadays which can be used with a standard web browser. Unlike IPSec, it does not require installation of specialized client software on the end user’s computer.

Benefits of VPN

· Security and prevention of data theft

· Uncensored Internet access

· Unblocking ability for sites

· Keeping away data trackers by keeping your browsing history private

· Supports popular p2p protocol like BitTorrent

Drawbacks of VPN

VPN slows down your internet. The factors affecting the speed are the number of people using the VPN and the geographical location.

Who uses it?

It is used on an individual level – Consumers use a private VPN service or tunnel to protect their identity and online activity. This is especially relevant when we use public wifi which may not be secure. You can use anonymous VPNs, which serves as a privacy buffer between you and your Internet Service Provider, who otherwise has access to your internet usage patterns. VPNs are used extensively by BitTorrent users.

Corporates use it to communicate in confidentiality video, voice or data over a public network. It is also a good option when employees are scattered all over the globe. VPNs help connects global offices. Corporates either use a VPDN which helps connect to a company LAN through dial up or site-to-site- VPN where dedicated hardware is also used to connect multiple sites to the company LAN.

How many countries support VPNs?

114 countries in the world provide VPN networks.

How much does it cost?

It costs less than ten dollars per month, ranging from four to seven dollars per month.

What is free VPN

VPN that does not cost you anything up front. Most free VPN services offer only PPTP which is considered obsolete. Also, because it is free, there will be thousands of users logging in resulting in lack of bandwidth for all. Bandwidth which has to be bought can be afforded by paid VPN services who use their profits to purchase more bandwidth.

Anonymous Internet Surfing – Is Google Chrome Or Internet Explorer 8 the Answer to Internet Privacy?

I often hear about the brand new Google Chrome web browser and the upcoming Microsoft (or is it Windows?) Internet Explorer 8 and how great they are. One of their most important new features is supposedly their privacy mode or how they call it.

Great, “Finally we can get some privacy on the net” I hear you saying! Well, maybe. But not with those tools I am afraid. The term “privacy mode” is a bit misleading in my opinion. Not false marketing, it’s just important to know what it has been designed for and what is beyond its scope.

The privacy modes offered by those, as well as the other web browsers on the market, are good for one thing only. When the privacy mode is enabled, no traces are left in the operating system registry, no cookies and history is stored on the local PC.

So when you want to hide the fact that you have just visited that ton of porn webs from your wife or kids, it will do the job. That’s what it has been designed for – of course not just for the porn webs but we know the truth, right? 😉

It can also mask the user-agent browser string pretending you are using a different web browser with a different preferred language. In my opinion, that’s just a feeble attempt at ensuring your anonymity.

So, is that real privacy?! It helps for sure. It’s great when you share your computer with someone else and I am not saying those are bad features. Far from that!

What I am afraid of, however, is that once those web browsers become widespread, many people, mostly those technically less savvy ones, will get that very dangerous false feeling of privacy and anonymity on the Internet.

They will think this way: “I just enable this great privacy mode and nobody will see what I am doing on the net, nobody will know where I am coming from, nobody will be able to steal my private data.”.

But this, my unknown Internet friend, this is not happening. You will need a bigger caliber for that. Much bigger!

Internet Marketing Advice For A New Business Owner

Internet marketing is just what the name implies. Advertising products and services online. There are several types of online marketing, including search engine optimization, pay per click and social media marketing. This type of marketing makes it easier for companies and individuals to target specific advertisements to a defined audience.

To learn more techniques, you should pretend to be a customer and see what other sellers and marketers are doing in the niche you are interested in. Subscribe to other email lists, and analyze what attracts you and what makes you not want to buy the product. Adapt these techniques to your product.

To upgrade your visibility and get the word out about your business, create a Facebook page. Facebook is a worldwide phenomenon, and a tool that you must incorporate to maximize potential. Create a detailed page about what you can offer to your client, which can be visible to over 750 million different people.

Give clear direction to your consumers without being too pushy. You want your customers to buy from you and to do this, they need to know how. Tell them which links to click, what to fill out and where to find the information they need, to complete the process. If your readers have to guess how to do something, they are not likely to complete the process.

Make sure your “front door” is a pretty one. Your website is the only way people will get to know you. Make sure to make a great first impression on your visitors by creating an open, welcoming, and descriptive place for them. Understand that your website is your main means of communication, and keep the doors open!

At the bottom of every page on your site, do not forget to add a back to top option. This will allow every visitor to avoid scrolling and get to the top of the page by simply clicking a button. Inserting a back to top button limits frustration and will improve your sales.

No matter where you want to buy advertising space, make sure that you think about the audience that will see your ad. Don’t purchase advertising space on a website for people recovering from alcoholism if you’re trying to sell alcohol. Make sure the right people are seeing your ads, or else they won’t be effective.

Even though they are print media, business cards are an important part of your Internet marketing strategy. Every time you hand a potential customer your business card, you have the opportunity to direct them to your website. Be sure the URL for your site is printed on your business cards.

More than any one internet marketing strategy, it is trust between website users and website owners that leads to sales. Visitors who have consistently pleasant and useful interactions with a particular website are more inclined to listen to that website’s owner when it comes time to make a buying decision. Fostering trust is the key to converting faithful visitors into faithful customers.

Although internet marketing can be much less expensive than traditional forms of advertisement and results can be measured quickly and accurately, some disadvantages do exist. A major problem is that some people refuse to purchase anything online and others just don’t trust the internet. Personal information can be hacked and abused when held by online companies.

Six Tips for Cell Phone Longevity

Cell phones are an integral part of the lives of hundreds of millions of people We’ve come to depend on them for an array of functions including communication, keeping time, entertainment, and browsing the web just to name a few. With our cell phone dependence, maintaining the health and well being of these devices is certainly in our best interest. Cell phone care is really a simple matter of observing some basic precautions:

o Avoid exposing cell phones to extreme temperatures. Heat can damage the battery and the electronics of a cell phone. Thus, leaving a phone sitting in a hot car is inadvisable. Cold can cause damage to them as well, particularly temporary loss of the screen display.

o Avoid exposure to dampness. Moisture causes corrosion of the internal parts of a cell phone. To avoid this, hands should be dry when handling the cell phone and a protective case can be a good preventative measure as well. It’s not uncommon for cell phone repair techs to work on phones that have been dropped into sinks, toilets, swimming pools, and so forth. Leaving the cell phone in a safer, dry environment is wise but keeping it attached with a belt clip or “leash” is another method of preventing accidents when the phone must accompany the user into a “moisture rich” environment.

o Keep the cell phone secured. Dropping a cell phone is obviously not healthy for it. Again, clips, “leashes” etc. can be a good precaution.

o Avoid scratches and other surface damage by using a case or “skin” for protection. Throwing an uncovered cell phone into a purse or pocket with an array of sharp objects contained in it or other substances that might leak on to it is risky.

o Charge your battery appropriately. The battery is often what most limits the life of a cell phone. Manufacturer guidelines clearly outline exactly how and when a battery should be charged to assure it reaches its maximum life expectancy.

o Keep the cell phone clean. This is more about the cell phone user’s health than the phone’s well being. Think about it, a person’s hands have more bacteria and micro-organisms clinging to them than any other part of the body. Their mouth is not exactly pristine either and is certainly a prime entry point for the critters that show up on a cell phone handset. Using anti-bacterial wipes can help ward off some of these little monsters. A micro-fiber cloth is also good for keeping the LCD screen easy to read and scratch free. * A reminder here that liquid cleaners should seldom be necessary but when used should not be applied directly to the screen on the cell phone as cell phones react poorly to liquids; instead any cleaner should be applied to the cloth first.

Years of faithful service can be obtained from the average cell phone if proper care and maintenance are observed.

Marketing Chocolate

Throughout history, chocolate has been marketed differently to different consumer types. Some companies like to show their customers that their chocolate has the most weight, by using digital scales and then showing what the price computing scales read on the actual package label. Yet, other companies prefer to create an upscale image, by making their products seem rich and indulgent. This article discusses the different ways to market chocolate.

1. Make a product that is meant for the everyday consumer. This type of chocolate is made for those who want an average chocolate bar. The packaging is usually very simple and the prices are the same or lower than the rest of the competition.

2. Create a rich and luxurious image for the product. This type of chocolate is set above the rest in price. It usually has gold packaging and has a look that is different from all of the competitors.

3. Organic products are becoming more and more popular, so making chocolate to appease this type of consumer is a newer marketing technique. In order for a chocolate to be organic, it must be approved by the USDA and some companies then go on to get certified organic by other more strict organizations.

4. Companies also want to reach out to the adventurous chocolate eater by using exotic ingredients in the chocolate. These types of chocolates usually have bold colors on the package label, to emphasize the exotic ingredients that are in the chocolate. Exotic ingredients may include, spices like cayenne pepper, or different fruits like passion fruit or mango.

5. Sugar free chocolate appeals to those who have diabetes or anyone who wants to reduce their sugar intake. The diet industry has really taken off in the past ten years and as such, so has the diet chocolate industry. People with diabetes or consumers who are watching their weight are able to eat chocolate that is made without sugar. This chocolate is usually made with artificial sweeteners and the packaging reflects this change. The wrapping and labeling on this kind of chocolate bar is usually lighter, to indicate that it is lighter in calories and sugar, therefore, making it a light chocolate bar.

6. Finally, there is marketing towards children, in which companies make a product that is fun with packaging that has bright colors. There are many chocolate producing companies whose target market is children. In order to attract children anywhere from two to sixteen, they make their labels appear bright and cheerful. These companies also make their companies seem fun and sometimes quirky to attract children to other products they may offer.

Chocolate has been a part of the everyday consumers’ lives for hundreds of years. It is only in the recent past that the consumer market for chocolate has been segmented into so many different components. The consumer market is also constantly changing, so it will be interesting to see what new markets come about in the next few decades and how the chocolate industry will deal with these future changes in the chocolate market.

My Best Ever Holiday in Goa With Club Mahindra!

Holidays are the time for repose & leisure; it is also the time to connect & catch up with your buddies & family. Taking a trip with your family however needs a little planning & care. With kids & the granny-grandpa you need not worry! Holiday can be adventurous even with responsibilities on the road. OK so where do I start? I planned my trip well in advance. Though we earlier wanted to go to Kerala, the kids of course would love the sands & the sea more so planned our trip to Goa, Varca Beach at the Club Mahindra Resort. Being a week long stay we wanted to relax & take long walks, sunbaths…Lots of seafood …paragliding …long drives on the classic Goa bikes…not to forget Google pints of beer! We took a flight from Delhi to Goa & later hired a cab to reach Varca Beach. The jet lag made us a bit tired but the scenery was breathtakingly beautiful-the vast stretch of coconut trees made us forget the hustle & bustle of the city life.

Away from the trodden track, the voyager discovers a quixotic & the hidden Goa in its medieval small towns, and beautiful villages, with rich flora and fauna. Only Goa can provide the truly exhilarating ‘out of this world’ experience. We finally reached Our cute little cottage, a descent 2BHK apartment.Well furnished with an attached bathroom. The manager greeted us & offered us complimentary coconut drinks & a basket full of lovely eateries.

My kids could not stop themselves from taking a cool splash in the lovely swimming pool maintained by Club Mahindra. The Sun deck being my hubby’s ultimate joy while our entire stay in Goa! One thing that I want to point out is that Club Mahindra helps you to make your holidays much more interactive & find for example the glass-painting & other such activities which makes the stay really peaceful for the mothers & keep the kiddies busy rather than watching TV thought that’s also offered with the plush studio apartment at Club Mahindra!

The Anjuna & the Baga Beach has some lovely water sports, so definitely don’t give it a miss. If you mention Goa. Dolphin watching and boat trips will surely keep you enthralled at Varca. A boat cruise on the river Sal promises dolphin spotting, as well as breathtaking sunsets. For your rejuvenation, you can look forward to yoga and meditation offered by many hotels and resorts of the area. The sea-food has become really costly at Goa, the in-house food is however palatable, more so the Chef recommended us some really yummy dishes. He also tailored the dishes according to our tastes. A memorable holiday well-spent in Goa….

Is a Work at Home Business Right for You?

How do you know if a work at  home  business is the right one for your business type? Well, there are some clear criteria that can tell you if you can do your dream  business  out of your  home  or if you should get an office.

If you are thinking about starting a work at  home  business, you should consider three major factors: Contact, Branding, Products/Employees.

First off, if you want a work at  home  business, you need to determine what type of client contact you will need to have in your business. How much contact will you have with a client? Is it suitable for your office at home? How much of a traditional professionalism do you want to portray? If you have a work at  home   business  where you will not be directly meeting with clients in your  home  or if you are not looking to have a conventional sense of professionalism, then your work at  home   business  may prosper just in your  home . However, if you need that extra professionalism or you will be doing a lot of client contact in your office, then you may want to move outside of your home.

Next you should determine if you can create a professional brand from your own home. You need to know that you can develop a brand and maintain it from your work at  home  business office. Some people perceive a work at  home   business  as “mom and pop” or quaint, while others don’t really care if you work at  home , as long as you get the job done well. However, building a reputation as a top-notch business in your field is important to success in your business. Make sure you can build and maintain that image from your work at  home  business office.

Finally, your products and employees have a large impact on whether or not you can succeed in a work at  home  business. Though your company may start off small, with a small number of products or employees, you may find

space much more challenging as you begin to grow. However, if your product is intellectual, you may find that a work at  home  business may be perfect for the space you have. However, if you run a work at  home  business with sensitive information, you may want to invest in ways to keep it safe or work in an outside office.

Read the rest of the article here: Is a Work at  Home  Business Right for You?.

Download the Free Work at  Home  Manual (Free $97 Value!) and receive valuable tips, strategies and techniques designed to grow a very successful  Home   Based   Business .

Earn Money Online Survey – Making a Difference in the Products You Use

One of the reasons why companies pay so that you can earn money online survey completion is to shape  and  mold the  products   and   services  that they provide to you, the consumer. Companies that produce new  products  or that revise or refine existing products get ideas for those products or product refinements from the people who use them, among other sources. By completing surveys, you submit your opinion to be grouped or contrasted with others to provide input to the people in the business of deciding the future of a particular product. The data input from you can take any of several different forms:

Know your product

In order to earn money online survey completion, those completing the questionnaires must have a reasonable knowledge of the product they are reviewing. While it may be tempting to fake the answers, doing so not only invalidates the responses, but it means that the company cannot honestly evaluate what they are doing correctly or incorrectly in either the advertising or the product design. If the person completing the survey is not familiar enough with the product to venture an opinion, then he or she should not complete the survey at all.

Update your demographics

Before you begin, earn money online survey sites normally ask you to complete a profile so that surveys of interest to you and targeted to your income level and geographical location can be sent. When any of the components of your profile changes significantly, it should be upgraded with the companies that send you the surveys. For example, if you decided to get married, you would want to add a spouse to the profile. This may mean you will have access to even more money making surveys. If you have a new baby, your profile will change and you will be using different types of products than you did previously.

Try new products

If you want to earn money online survey completion easily, using a wide variety of products when you do your typical household shopping will help you know about more products and be able to rate them honestly and from experience. Rather than being stuck in a rut using the same products day after day, choosing a variety of household and recreation products will give you more information about different ways of doing things as well.

Save money

Not only do you earn money online survey completion sites, you usually will save some money for the products you use everyday. Some survey sites ask about your preferences when you complete a profile so that you can receive coupons and discounts for items you would normally purchase. Your grocery and household product budget dollars will go much further when you are using free coupons along with your regular shopping. These coupons and discounts are for nationally known brands or for new brands being test marketed in your area. Either way, you save money. Food, household items, recreational and entertainment products and travel discounts are just a few of the things where you can save money.

Starting a Windowsill Herb Garden

Growing herbs in a windowsill herb  garden  is a wonderful  and  practical use of any small  gardening  space. Nothing beats being able to pick fresh herbs for your dishes right where you need them. Planting indoor herbs is not that different from growing herbs outside. This type of herb  garden  is simple to set up, relatively affordable, exceptionally useful in the kitchen, can give off soothing scents in your  home ,  and  can be enjoyed by everyone.

Let me share some great tips on growing herbs in your windowsill herb  garden :

1. Plastic containers and clays make great pots for your herbs. Just make sure that they can provide ample drainage and that the container is big enough to accommodate the growth of your plants.

2. Its best to place your herb in a sunny window — your herb plants will surely grow a few days after they were planted. Light is essential to herb growing. If you don’t have a sunny area inside your home, use fluorescent lights.

3. Having a large windowsill also means that you can grow lots of herbs in containers. There are different kinds of plants that will do well in a windowsill like include oregano, chives, mint, basil, rosemary, parsley, marjoram and thyme. You can buy these plants in nurseries  and   garden  centers.

4. Chives grow easily in windowsills and they are excellent for salads, teas and soups. Oregano, sage, basil, rosemary and thyme are best for sauces and meats. An all time-favorite choice for garnishing is parsley.

5. The best type of soil for container  gardening  is a soilless potting mix. It contains natural minerals that drain better. One of the most notable characteristic of this type of soil is that they prevent the plants from being susceptible to soil-borne diseases.

6. When watering the containers in the windowsill, be sure to leave at least an inch of space at the top of the container. Herbs don’t like to be kept moist. Be sure to throw any remaining water to avoid waterlogging your herbs.

5. Some gardeners used edible-only fertilizers to ensure the steady growth of their plants. As a responsible gardener, you should not over fertilize the plants to keep the herbs safe for human consumption. As a general rule, the fertilizer should be mixed with water before they are applied to the  garden .

Growing your herbs in a windowsill herb  garden  is a superb way to keep them handy all throughout the year. It can also be a wonderful and beautiful addition to your home décor.

What Exactly Is Health Care? Get a Physician Perspective

So the term healthcare is used over and over again. What does that mean? What does that mean to you? There are so many variations of this definition and depending on the source of whom you are speaking with. Some would say healthcare is disease prevention. Some would say it’s managing disease such as diabetes or high cholesterol. Some would say its access to a doctor or provider.

Health by definition is a state of being injury or illness free.

Heath care as defined by Websters dictionary states “the preservation of health by the treatment and prevention of disease by trained and licensed professionals.”

In the pursuit of health- the state of being injury or illness free, we think that this should be looked at as a goal. This goal of health in reality is a moving target. Our bodies are bombarded daily from viruses, bacteria, social pressures, psychological pressures, just to name a few. With so many forces working to impede health, we want to maximize our internal resources to keep us free from injury and illness. Health to us is finding a balance. If we look at the human landscape, there are three major components that comprise us- the body, the mind, and the spirit. If anyone of these three basic components are overpowering the other or lacking, then the achievement of health will fall short. Lets use an example-

Ronnie is a exercise machine. He works out 5-6 times per week, eats a very clean, non processed diet, drinks plenty of water, and tries to sleep adequately to feel refreshed. Most of us on initial impression would equate this person as a “healthy” person. However, at home, Ronnie has been having difficulty communicating with his wife, who feels he exercises too much and alienates the family. The more difficulty Ronnie has at home, he goes to his safe zone of the gym to release tension. This cycle continues to build. The stress at home continues to build. Ronnie is physically fit, but mentally is exhausted. This illustration example shows that truly to be free of illness and injury we need to look at all aspects to be truly healthy.

We believe that the pursuit of health (balance of the body, mind, and spirit) is grounded in the components of wellness- Health, Lifestyle, and Education. We feel that when incorporating these components into your life, then you can truly attain “health”.

So what is healthcare then? Is it going to the doctor to get advice? Is it seeing a counselor to discuss life stressors? Is it reading books and articles regarding lifestyle choices? Answer- ALL of the above. We need to look at healthcare from a different lens. Many people that I see in the office view healthcare in the form of doctors visits. These visits are based upon a recent illness or injury. Most folks are trying to get advice in how they can feel better. I would argue that treating an injury or illness is not healthcare. I call this sick care. Sick care is just one component of why I chose medicine as a profession, to help those that are ill or injured. It seems that this for most folks equates into healthcare. What about the times between illness and injury? What are the resources and plans that people are doing to PREVENT illness or injury. In the world of business, there is a notion to be PRO active, rather than reactive. Be the person that starts the trend, not follows it. That is my goal for the patients that I see.

I have patients that have diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol who for various reasons are on medication to help control these diseases. I check there numbers on a quarterly basis and many have achieved the status of having “controlled” numbers. My patients feel better, have no symptoms from their respective disease processes, and are happy that the blood tests reflect their hard work. Have they achieved health however? To me, NO.

Beyond the prescriptions that help maintain disease, we still need to address Lifestyle and Education to help these patients. Lifestyle choices are so important- the type of nutrition we take in, exercising our bodies, keeping our minds fresh, learning effective techniques for stress reduction are all critical. Education is the one component that goes overlooked in many offices. Doctors I feel are mostly to blame here. We all try to give advice and hope that our patients are listening. The question is whether they remember the advice given. Our practice writes down in detail and in non-medical jargon, plans for each patient. Our hope is that the patient will actually read what we wrote and keep our summaries like a cookbook of entries. Over time, we hope that their cookbook of entries gives them a knowledge base for making educated decisions.

So what is healthcare? It’s the pursuit of maintaining an illness or injury free life by incorporating a balance of the body, the mind, the spirit, through lifestyle choices and education.

Necessity of Integrating Workplace Wellbeing Programmes

Corporate wellness programmes fosters welfare among employees, regardless the stress of the workplaces. Most of the reputed factories, offices and corporations of all leading nations are taking up these strategies as they assure health and security of the workers. This innovative technique is a result of many diverse experiences. Some companies have integrated these programmes for minimising the healthcare expenses while some others wanted to make the work atmosphere comfortable and welcoming for their staff. The firms, which want to have workplace wellbeing, could contact the many organisations, who offer such services. The chief attributes of a successful corporate wellness programme is given in the following discussion.

Characteristic Traits of an Ideal Corporate Wellness Programme

• The programmes must have a pragmatic approach. Workers must easily understand and carry out the activities. These include- stress management workshops, yoga and cooking classes, fitness and quit smoking challenges, weight-loss competitions and many more.

• Ideal wellness programmes must convince the companies to offer high-quality food to their staff. Enough cafeterias and vending machines would give affordable, tasty yet healthy foods.

• The company’s fabric must engage well-integrated programmes. These cost-effective techniques must motivate people and tell them about healthy lifestyles.

• Creation of unique and spirited programmes that constantly evolve with time guarantees long-term success. The programmes must take responsibility of all the operations.

Now we would delve into the benefits that these programmes offer to the companies and its employers.

Benefits of Workplace Well-being Programmes

• Healthcare costs are a major concern for most of the organisations. Thus, every business owner wants healthy employers, corporate wellness programmes would be the suitable tool for that. By implementing these techniques, a company could successfully cut its expenses.

• These programmes successfully minimise absenteeism. The workers are fit as well as fine, thus, they do not need sick leaves, which leads to limited staff turnover.

• The initiatives of these programmes promise to the company a healthy working staff. Through exercises and proper diet, many severe illnesses and diseases could be reduced. Healthier workers would lead to high productivity and thus would be beneficial for the company.

As people spend most of their time at work, a prosperous workplace is necessary. Through active promotion of wellness programmes, issues such as, alcohol and drug abuse, bullying and stress could be controlled. They successfully optimise the corporate culture and have driven the employers to perfect performing zones. They could satisfy the social, emotional, physical and mental needs of the workers.

Collections – Why Do People Collect Things?

There were seashells everywhere. The room was furnished with couches and chairs with a seashell pattern on the upholstery.There were lamps with shades covered with shells. Sculptures made of shells and books about seashells sat on the tables. Family photos in seashell- encrusted frames lined the shelves. A curio cabinet was filled with more shells. I was visiting the home of a new acquaintance. She collects seashells. A special room in her home was dedicated to shells. There were shells from all over the world everywhere in that room. Even the business card she gave me was decorated with a photo of a large shell.

People have a natural tendency to collect things. Seashells may not be their passion but whether its coins, stamps, postcards, spoons, or more bizarre things like teabags, chocolate bar wrappers or traffic signs we human beings seem inclined to be collectors. Dr. Steve Anderson, a neurologist at the University of Iowa says our need to collect may harken back to an earlier point in our evolution, since many animals hoard things, especially food.

According to Susan Pearce, author of the book Interpreting Objects and Collections one in three North Americans collects something. There are many different kinds of collections and collectors.

Some collections are souvenirs or mementos of a place. I once visited the home of a couple who collect masks every time they travel. One wall of their dining room is covered with traditional painted masks from South Africa, Egypt, Vietnam, the Philippines and dozens of other places. When they are on a trip they never have to stop and think about what to buy as a souvenir. They just look for a mask to add to their collection.

Some collections are gifts. I know a man who gives his mother a china plate every Mother’s Day with a message or saying about mothers on it. He hunts through antique stores and curio shops, often for weeks, until he finds a plate and a design that he hasn’t already purchased. His mother has more than twenty such plates in her collection.

Some collections are of practical use. I have friends who are world travelers and collect Starbucks Coffee mugs from every place they visit. There are Starbucks franchises in more than forty countries. Our friends don’t have forty different mugs but certainly enough for a fairly large group of coffee drinking guests.

The desire to learn new things can also be the impetus behind a collection. I know someone who collects military artifacts from the World Wars. He has uniforms, machinery, vehicles, sheet music, maps, books, flags and photographs. His collection has helped him learn a great deal about military history.

Some people collect things because of their monetary value. I used to work with a woman who collected Barbie Dolls. She assured me someday she would sell her collection and make a mint of money.

Susan Pearce says there are some collections which she terms ‘magic’. There is no rhyme or reason for collecting them but they have a certain appeal or attraction for the collector. I imagine this might apply to a collection of snow globes or a large collection of Superman memorabilia.

Collections can remind us of positive experiences and important people in our lives. They can help us learn new things. They can be practical or magical. If you’re not a collector you might want to think about becoming one. Collections can enrich our lives.

Online Gambling – The Soaring Rise From the Global Economic Crisis

During these tough economic times, it is no surprise that land based casinos are losing money. You may have thought that people would be flocking to sportsbooks and casinos worldwide in order to gamble and hopefully win big as an aid to surviving the recession that the economic crisis has spawned.

However, it seems that the opposite is true. The lack of money for entertainment means that folks are foregoing those weekend trips to Las Vegas and other gambling meccas. They have even become unwilling to spend the money required for gasoline or public transportation in order to get to land based casinos that are within driving distance of their homes. You could ask any sports book or casino owner how the recession has treated their business, and most of them will tell you that they are losing money.

Experts in the gambling industry have observed a ripple effect taking place across the world. Determining the patterns of international gambling is the subject of a study that has released some surprising facts about the gambling industry. Online gambling is rising in popularity in spite of the economic crisis. In fact, in 2008, the total amount taken in worldwide by online gambling was more than 20 billion dollars, setting a new high record.

Why are people shying away from land-based casinos and using online casinos instead? Simply put, they can make their money go much further in an online casino. As mentioned above, people just do not want to part with their cash for airfare or for any other form of transportation in order to get to the casinos. They are using that money to go to online casinos, and having their gambling fun in the comfort of their homes.

The gambling industry is predicting that online gambling will continue to be quite popular for as long as the economic crisis goes on, and even beyond. People are not going to give up gambling. They may not wager as large an amount as they once did, but the lure of winning is too strong for them to stop completely. They will turn to online casinos as a way to continue their gambling habit for less money.

All that is needed for online gambling is a computer and an inexpensive broadband connection to the Internet. Anywhere you can use a laptop computer or a mobile phone is also a place where you can gamble. Unlike land-based casinos, online gambling allows you to practice many of the most popular games at no charge. You can get a feel for a game before investing any money in it, which can save money in the long run.

Those punters who are smokers and have seen their favourite casino or sports book turn into a smoke-free establishment are also bringing their gambling dollars to the online casinos. Gambling via the Internet means no restrictions on smoking, food or drink. There is no dress code to follow, and many consider online casinos much safer than land based casinos. Several of the big online casinos are responding to this influx of new customers by making online gambling even more fun and appealing. They are adding welcome bonuses and other promotions, holding tournaments, and featuring player customizable slot machines. Almost everything you can find at a land-based casino is available at online casinos, plus a whole lot more.

Online gambling is very convenient, offers a huge variety of games to tantalize the punter, and suits the entertainment budgets of those who are affected by the economic crisis. There is no doubt that the gambling industry is right on the threshold of even more growth as it grows more popular than ever.

10 Fun Christmas Party Games

Christmas party games can be a blast and when you are having a Christmas party it is always a good idea to include a game of some kind. Here are ten fun ones you can consider playing at your next event.

1. Bingo

Why not put together some Christmas themed bingo cards and have fun with a Holiday version of this classic game?

2. White Elephant

You can’t go wrong with this popular game. Make sure you tell everyone who is attending about it ahead of time so that everyone comes prepared. You may want to also have a special prize for the person who brings the best white elephant as voted on by the rest of the party attendees. There are many variations of this classic so you will want to decide upon the rules before you start.

3. I’ve Never

This one can be quite entertaining and can also be an ice breaker for a party with a lot of guests who do not know each other. The basic idea is that each guest takes a turn saying something that they have never done. Each guest who has done that thing drops out and you want to be the last one still in the game. The idea then is to think of something that you have never done that you think at least some if not most of the guests have done.

4. Guess Which Christmas Carol

This is usually played as a paper and pen or pencil game where you have the sheets created ahead of time. You find online or anywhere else that you can, rhymes, jokes or other facts about various Christmas carols and each guest or group of guests has to figure out which Christmas carol is which. You then give a prize to the person who gets the most correct answers.

5. Christmas Pictures Matching Game

For this game you will need to have pictures already put together and you play it similar to a standard memory game either on a board or on the floor.

6. Finnish the Christmas Carol

This game is played similar to name that tune, where you either sing or say the first part of a Christmas carol and then the person who is answering has to finish the title, song or verse.

7. Nativity reenactment

This is a classic one for many family Christmas parties but can also work for church or youth groups or any other appropriate group. Assign roles ahead of time so that people can either bring costumes or they can be obtained ahead of time for each person and then do a reenactment of the Nativity story.

8. Who or What Am I with a Christmas theme?

This is a version of the classic Who am I game. It is played by putting a piece of paper with the name of a Christmas related person or object on the back of each person and then everyone wonders around the room speaking with everyone else and asking questions to figure out who or what they are.

9. Duck Duck Goose (Reindeer)

Played just like the children’s game duck duck goose, you instead say reindeer instead of duck and even with a large group of adults, this game can be quite fun and a riot.

10. Decorate the Sleigh

You can either decorate a large real sleigh outdoors or make paper sleighs or smaller wooden ones and then use them as a centerpiece or other object for your Christmas decorations.

Have fun playing these Christmas party games and keep in mind that most games played at other times of the year can be adapted for Christmas.

Arowana – The Best Foods To Feed Your Baby Arowana

Arowana fish have a wide and varied food diet and really anything that will fit in there mouth is considered food to them. But when we are looking after a baby arowana we have to be more aware of the foods we are feeding them. Personally I don’t recommend live bait feeding to a young arowana due to how susceptible they will be to disease and live bait is the biggest cause of disease spread among aquarium arowanas.

Here is the run down of food types that will suit a baby arowana whether it is silver, red or golden. I am classing a baby arowana as any arowana below 15cm in length. This size of arowana fish should be fed up to 3 times a day.

Frozen/ freeze dried bloodworms:

This is a very healthy and nutritious food for a baby arowana and its a food that is usually and easily accepted right from the start. This is good as arowanas are known as being picky eaters.

Also the bloodworms float for a period of time which will give your fish time to eat them.

Baby Crickets:

Another healthy food that most baby arowanas will take to straight away. Make sure that it is baby crickets that you are using as the bigger crickets have a hard external shell that might cause intestinal injury in a young arowana. Some people feed the baby crickets carrots or other nutritional foods before feeding them to the arowana. This is another way to get extra nutrients into your baby arowana.

Freeze Dried Plankton:

This is another good food which contains a lot of carotene. This food also floats which will allow the young arowana enough time to eat it but just remember to break off the hard and pointy parts before dropping it in the tank.

Foodsticks/ pellets:

If your arowana is eating well and seems content then you might try and introduce him to a stable food like a foodstick or pellet. Just remember to break the foodstick and pellets down for the arowana to eat.

Shrimp:

Market shrimp can be fed to a baby arowana as long as it is cut down small enough and able to fit in its mouth. Just remember also to take off the hard shell/ skin and make sure that the shrimp is properly defrosted if frozen before hand.

High Quality Flake

Can be used to mix up there diet when young, but not worth using when they get bigger as it wouldn’t fill them.

The feeding of different types of foods to a baby arowana is very important as it makes them less inclined to reject different foods when they get bigger. Its also very important to feed a baby arowana at least three times a day as they grow fast but try not to over feed them each time.

Weight Training – Advantages And Disadvantages

Weight training is a great way to get your whole body in shape. Many people associate weight training with your upper body and arms. However if you have the right equipment then you can easily exercise the lower part of your body, such as your chest and legs. You may think to yourself that everything about using weights is an advantage. However there are disadvantages to using weights and all the advantages and disadvantages will be described below.

One of the advantages of using weights to work out is the way that you can strengthen your whole body. We all know that weights are used by the person using them standing still and then performing an action using the weights. This action can be moving your arms up and down or side to side. If you are not the type of person that likes to partake in running, swimming or any other kind of real life sport, then weights is the perfect solution to keeping your body toned and in great shape.

Another advantage of using weights to keep fit is when you are using these weights and your body is standing still. Your bones in your body are becoming active as they are trying to support you as you are doing the exercises. So you are in effect working out the entire body every time that you use weights to exercise.

There are disadvantages to using weights for exercising and the main disadvantage is safety. You should never exercise with weights alone. You should always have a supporter with you in case the worst happens. The most common safety concern is using the barbell. There is a possibility of becoming trapped under the barbell if you are unable to do a repetition due to the amount of weight on the barbell.

Another disadvantage when using weights is causing damage to your own body. As stated before you need your whole body when you are using weights. If you cannot keep complete control of your body when you are working out, then you are going to pull or even tare a muscle in your body. Also using heavy weights when you are not ready will always cause an injury to the part of your body that you are exercising. Always remember to start off small and then move on when you feel perfectly ready to do so.

Overall weights are a good way to work out. Millions of people use weights to do a daily work out. After one or two weeks you can start to feel your body becoming more and more toned. You can also feel the muscles in your body start to bulge a bit more then before. However safety will be the major concern to remember when you are using your weights. You must remember to stretch all the muscles in your body before you attempt to exercise your body. You have to get your heart pumping and when you are done remember to warm down so that your body knows that the workout is over. Warming down will prevent trapping any Lactic Acid in your body.

Hiring a Competent Family Law Attorney to Ease the Divorce Process

For most people who see ultimately severing the ties as the answer to their perennial marital issues, divorce is a huge step worth taking. However, there are several problems that arise for both parties during this sensitive and difficult time. The children, whose interests should come first, must be safeguarded from the ill effects of divorce. Matters pertaining to properties and assets also need to be settled.

As with any issue that entails a discussion of legalities, divorce is a tough process to deal with. Competing issues arise from this litigation, including child custody, child support and equitable distribution of assets. Because of this, you need a legal expert to navigate the intricacies of the case, and help you explore your options.

If you are on the search for the right family law attorney to help you deal with the legal aspect of divorce, identify the best law firm for you by bearing these tips in mind:

1. Your family law attorney should steer your case toward the less expensive, less complicated route. Nobody wants a messy and chaotic proceeding that complicates the case instead of making it simple for you. Generally speaking, your lawyer will explain to you that litigation should be avoided where possible, and that reaching an out-of-court settlement is ideal.

2. If litigation is unavoidable, your lawyer should competently represent you. If the other party insisted on litigating the matter before the court, or if it is the best way to go among other alternatives, your attorney should be able to insist on your rights and secure favorable results.

3. While a family law specialist is recommended, a full service law firm is a better option. With issues mounting over one other when divorce is filed, you will need to tap other professionals who are experts in their relevant field. It will definitely save you the hassle of endless search if your law firm can provide you a property law expert, an estate planning solicitor or a taxation law specialist.

It is important for you to select a family law attorney who has had vast experience and a high success rate. Listen to people who have worked with the law firm, and be sure that they can give satisfactory answers to your questions and provide you with the services you need.

You need to remember that divorce is a legal battle that, awkward as it may sound, end with all parties winning and securing the outcome they hope for. Your kids should be your top priority throughout the process, and in no way should their rights be compromised.

The Burpy Blues

The big boss seemed to be exuding benevolence of the highest order as he took in his staff members seated in front of him in the conference room. He often prided himself of knowing every member of his office team on first name basis, and always listened to their views or problems in a very friendly way. Recently he initiated an office procedure to improve overall quality of performance and operations. True to his nature, before implementing this procedure he wanted to know how everyone felt about it. He wanted free and frank opinions and also meaningful suggestions. So he called for this particular meeting. Although I was the latest addition to the team I had to gather all bits of useful information about my new boss.

Again, true as always to his nature he never wanted to make it a predictable affair with members standing up and speaking in monotonous serial order-one by one row wise. Instead, he decided who would speak at what time. He would announce names at random and s/he would speak accordingly. Therefore, in actual practice it happened like that one in the very first row would give his/her opinion first and someone in the last or middle rows would be asked to speak next. The benevolent boss also asked his team members to be wary of repetitions-should avoid points chosen by earlier speakers.

Quite an unusual procedure to discuss an office procedure, I mused sitting in the first row and in direct eye contact with the big boss. Although I figured rather high in the office hierarchy the onus thus did not naturally fall upon me to start. It worked rather well. Not knowing exactly when their turn to speak would come people prepared their points faster keeping themselves in readiness and making adjustments to avoid repetitions.

Tea and snacks kept on coming in rounds as the discussion went on without any time constraint. It was important and so time should not be a factor, the boss announced in the beginning. We happily waited for our turns seeping tea and munching cakes and savoring sweets.

Suddenly in the solemn and intent atmosphere I heard a noise. I immediately deciphered it to be a loud burp and tried to focus quickly on the rather unwelcome source of origin. I traced it to an elderly person who was yet to speak and was feasting on the freebies. However, by that time his action concluded depriving me of the intrinsic charms associated with belching. I always enjoyed such acts which unfailingly entailed an assortment of expressions or contortions. Some would do it full mouthed and loud opening out as if to relish every bit of it; others would skew the parted lips either to the left or the right while not at all trying to suppress the noise; someone would kill the noise and release the air smoothly with some movement of the neck, jaw and mouth while most others with fashion and etiquette would always hide the action with left or right palm involving the bare minimum of facial contortions.

I thought the big boss would definitely react to it irritably. However, nothing happened of that sort and proceedings went on. In fact nobody in the assembly displayed any reaction.

And lo! It happened again. Loud and clear. This time somewhere from a row behind me and I missed the action and the source entirely. I only managed to see a lady on the other side of the row looking askance at the source seeming to say, “God! Could it be really you… ?”

The big boss displayed no emotion this time too. And the proceedings went on smoothly.

We came to the end of the session finally. The big boss was satisfied and happy getting mostly what he expected to get. The last round of tea was served. And then it happened.

In the very act of taking a sip from his cup of tea the big boss had it. He somehow managed it with an awkward scowl, not succeeding to suppress the noise however. It was again a loud act of belching.

Rather compassionate, I smirked with satisfaction and great amusement.

Comments: Medical Transcription – Scam-Free Home Employment

Individualize Your iPad With An iPad Skin That Matches Your Personality

It appears as if every few years, there is some new piece of electronics that sets the world on fire. Do you remember in the 1980’s when the newest item of technology was the personal Walkman? Or in the 90’s when it was the Discman? Or how about in the mid 2000’s when the iPod hit the stores and folks went crazy over them? These days, you can make the argument that that piece of technology that everyone needs to have is the iPad.

One thing about the latest, most popular piece of technology is that they tend to make their own industry built around add-ons for that project. Specifically for the iPad, this consists of anything from cases to hard drives, to customized earphones. All of that results in a multi-billion dollar industry. One thing that’s really big business is iPad skins, that help protect and beautify the outside of the iPad.

Let’s not mince words, one of the primary reasons why people love iPad skins is because they offer decoration for the outside of their iPad. While not everyone wants adornment (for those people they can get iPad skins which come in standard colors), there are plenty of people out there who want the back of their iPad to display their most favorite things. This can include everything from their most favorite band to their favorite athletic team, to just about anything else out there.

It seems like just about every organization out there had some type of skin for the iPad. If you would like skins designed by well-known fashion designers, you really can find that. On the other hand, if you want skins that have Hello Kitty on them, you’ll find those as well. It isn’t an exaggeration to say that no matter what you’re searching for, there is a pretty good possibility that you can find it on an iPad skin.

One of the primary reasons why people love iPad skins is that they protect the back of their iPads. Now, does that mean that you could drop your iPad from a first story balcony and expect it to not break? What it will do, though, is prevent your iPad from getting scratched up and dirty, which means that it will keep it’s natural look for a long time.

The thing about electronics like an iPad is that regardless of how often you keep it in the case, it has a propensity to get scratched up through normal use. If this isn’t a big problem for you, then you don’t need a skin. If you want to keep it looking great for years and years, though, you’ll need an iPad skin.

Whenever you’re in the market to buy iPad skins, you’ll find them nearly anywhere now days. With something that’s as coveted as an iPad, it looks like everyone out there is intending to cash in by offering iPad products. No matter whether you visit a small specialty store, or a big box store, you can find a good amount of skins available for you.

The right spot to go, though, to discover a myriad of skins is on the internet. It doesn’t matter how traditional or off the wall the iPad skins you are searching for may be, you can find them online.

Training Female Athletes – The Keys To Designing a Successful Conditioning Program

It is time that we, (the educators, teachers, parents and coaches) of female athletes all understand and accept the fact that female athletes are different from male athletes and these differences require a female athlete to train differently from boys/men. Female athletes are different in stature, muscle strength and have joint issues different from their male counterparts. This does not make female athletes weaker mentally or physically in any way. In fact, a female athlete’s unique anatomy and biological makeup makes them more conducive and more successful than boys/men in certain sports and activities.

It is also time to get away from the practice of female athletes using the men’s conditioning programs and protocols. Girls/women deserve more time and attention given to their conditioning programs and we all must work to erase the myths, stereotypes, social pressures and negative attitudes associated with the practice of strength training. Coaches of female athletes may need to educate themselves on how to design a strength and conditioning program for their female athletes and stress the importance of continuing a program over a period of weeks, months and years. Studies have shown that women do not adhere to a strength training program as much in comparison to men.

When I talk about strength and conditioning, I am not recommending that an athlete join a health club, spend a lot of money, train on exercise machines or buy big and bulky pieces of equipment for their basement. It is important to point out that female athletes can train at home or in a comfortable environment with a minimal amount of equipment and space. Using an airball, dumbbells, tubing bands or just your body weight, can be effective training aids in delivering a great workout for an athlete with little or no dent to the pocket book.

Listed below are the keys to developing a proper strength and conditioning program for female athletes. This is what the female athlete should be doing!

1. As a young girl just starting out in sports or physical activities, training should focus on sport movement, sport strength and sport balance. In other words learn how to move efficiently within your sport. Work on basic movement skills and the fundamental skills in your sport. Learn how to stop and start, cut, twist or turn. Girls need to learn to move more like tennis players. Tennis players stay forward on the balls of the feet, taking lots of little steps. They stay in an athletic stance, ready to move, pivoting on the front of the foot, with the knees bent. It is also important to keep the knees over the toes. Emphasize lateral and rotational movement patterns. Perform agility drills to teach change of direction while staying low in an athletic stance with knees flexed. Strength training must be sport specific, whole-body and multi-joint. The hip, the foot, the trunk and the shoulders all control the knee. Start with body weight exercises before adding external resistance and balance training needs to be incorporated into the conditioning program. Keep training fun. This is like a training for training period.

2. At a young age, girls should learn how to jump and land to prevent injuries, in particular anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) knee injuries. It is extremely important to have controlled, quality landings and soft landings from a jump, land like a feather, not wobbly knees or hard, loud landings. Land on the balls of the feet with knees flexed and ankles bent to absorb the force. It is important for coaches to teach and monitor how a girl handles a jump.

3. At a young age, girls should learn how to run properly. Coaches should teach the proper form, biomechanics and foot strike technique. This will contribute to a smooth, efficient motion and help prevent injuries in particular overuse injuries to the knee, hip, back, foot and ankle.

4. Stress the importance of wearing the proper shoes when strength training and in practices and games. Women are more flat-footed and knock-kneed so it is critical their shoes or insoles address these issues.

5. It would be ideal for a girl/woman to start a strength and conditioning program at least before junior high if they plan to compete and be successful at the high school or college level in their sport. The training should be year round with the proper amount of rest periods incorporated into the yearly training cycle. High school female athletes most definitely should be strength training year round.

6. A strength training and conditioning program should focus on exercises that strengthen the knee joint to help prevent ACL injuries. The quadriceps, especially the vastus medialis and more importantly, the hamstrings, which is normally much weaker in strength in comparison to the quadriceps in women. Also strengthen the abductors and adductors.

7. Focus on core strength. This does not mean training for appearance by getting a six pack. What I mean is training the chest, abdominals and upper and lower back and hip areas. These are problem areas for many female athletes. Train the core from a standing position, this is more functional and more sport specific. If you are ever pressed for time and can only do a few exercises, do core work.

8. If the sport requires a good deal of throwing motions, train the rotator cuff muscles in the shoulder joint. Also work the upper back muscles, the rhomboids, which help stabilize the scapula and takes stress off the shoulder joint and musculature.

9. Train in a functional manner. Most of the exercises in the training program should be closed chain, (standing, feet on the floor) which incorporates balance, coordination, agility and proprioception into each movement. Get off the machines and move freely with multi-joint and multi-planar exercises.

10. Stress proper nutrition and hydration at a young age. We are seeing osteoporosis in individuals at younger and younger ages each year. I highly recommend that female athletes and their parents meet with a Nutritionist/Dietician to ensure that the female athlete is getting the proper nutrition on a daily basis in relation to her activity level. It is safe to say that all female athletes could benefit from a daily multi-vitamin.

11. When a female athlete is maturing (12-13 years of age), training emphasis should shift from training for athleticism as a youth, to training to enhance locomotion, level changes, push pull movements and rotation. If an athlete has a strength training history and has developed a good strength and flexibility base, the athlete can then incorporate more advanced forms of training into their program. For example, more advanced plyometric training, training for speed, power and explosiveness and power training with the Olympic lifts. This is a training to compete period.

Athletes, please consult your physician before starting any new exercise program.

Important Characteristics of Good Ecommerce Home Pages and Product Pages

For ecommerce websites to better their conversion they need to begin to pay careful attention to the customer experience. This often means streamlining and designing your site from the customer’s point of view. The three most important sections on an ecommerce site are the home page, the product page, and the checkout process. In this article I’ll detail the elements that should be found on the home page and the product page if you are to help the customer do their job and buy your product.

The Home Page

The home page plays an important role in the overall picture of a successful ecommerce site. It can set the tone for the rest of the visitor experience and is a page visitors will return to in order to reacquaint themselves with your business. Its job is to grab attention, provide them with direction and get them deeper into the site.

Here are 4 important characteristics good home pages have.

1. Displays a clear offer. It can have multiple offers but works best when the “featured promotion” (that which you are looking to push hardest) is given prominence. If this is a monthly sale you run, give that sale front and center attention then support it with additional creative.

Build in an element of urgency to really drive home the message. Using words like “today” or “limited time” persuades the visitor to act now or potentially lose the opportunity to take advantage of your offer.

2. Contain a clear call to action. A call to action persuades the visitor to act upon something. This can be clicking a banner to see the monthly sale items, signing up for a newsletter mailing, adding an item to their cart, etc… Each of these micro actions should contain a call to action that supports the end result.

Common calls to action on a home page might be in support of sales, new products, daily features, and more. An example call to action would be a banner with details on the sale of the month and the text “click here to shop now!’

3. A clear and precise navigational path for accessing site content. This may seem logical, but many sites neglect the “clear and precise” portion. They provide navigation not thinking of how it is presented or how it will impact their visitors.

Don’t try to get cute here. Provide the user with traditional categorical navigation elements as well as inline text links within the copy of your site leading to those same end points.

4. Multiple presentations of accessing the same information within the site. As I’ve said, most home pages receive a variety of visitor demographics. Each visitor is seeking products to fit their needs yet each searches in a different manner to get to those results. One visitor may use the main navigational elements within the frame work of the site while another may prefer to read a little more before committing themselves.

To illustrate this point let me present this conceptual example. Let’s say you sell beach clothing.

Two different visitors arrive at your site – both looking for the same product.

The first visitor is going on vacation in the coming weeks and is looking for an outfit to wear on the beach. The second visitor lives on a beach and is looking for the same outfit.

Navigation that might speak better to the first visitor would be a heading that says “Vacation Outfits” (with a subset of links pointing toward things like beach wear, swim suits, sundresses, etc…) while the second visitor may respond better to categorical navigation that simply says “swimming suits.”

To get your home page driving visitors deeper into your site you must know your visitor demographics and speak each in a language they understand. If you’ve planned out your business correctly you should already have a good idea of the answer to the demographic makeup.

If you don’t know the answer you better go back and find it out. You can’t expect to grow business by randomly targeting any person that comes to your site.

The Product Page

We’ve gone over the home page; now let’s dig into some of what makes up a good product page.

Shipping Information

All internet consumers want to know “how much does shipping cost” and “how soon can I get it”?

Naturally, many begin to first ask this question at the product page. Providing them with the answer to that question at the precise point during their buying cycle is critical toward moving them closer to conversion. Giving them easy access to the shipping rates and shipping options will improve the customer experience and set you up for success.

Product Availability

Even if a product is in stock, don’t assume the customer knows that. Don’t make them think. A customer who sees a product listed as “in stock ready to ship” is more likely to put that item in their cart and proceed forward.

Add to Cart Button

No matter how good a product page may seem it’s certainly no good if the customer can’t figure out how to add the item to their cart. Developing an add to cart button that is larger and more visible is an essential element toward increasing conversion.

Presence of Payment Methods Accepted

Ok, the customer has decided that the product they are viewing is one they want. The next question many ask is “what payment options do I have for buying this”? Indicating the types of payments accepted will answer this question.

You can do this in a variety of unobtrusive ways. A good test is to try adding small icons of the payment methods you accept just under the add to cart button. Again, it’s at the moment that a customer is ready to add an item to their cart that they ask what methods of payment are accepted. Reinforcing it here is a good idea.

Product Photo

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. On the internet the product’s picture is just about the only element that can show clearly what an item really looks like. Make sure your photos are clear, crisp, show detail and are large enough to provide plenty of visual appeal yet are optimized for fast internet download times.

Using tools such as lightbox effects for showing larger photos and even zoom type effects (often with jQuery / Ajax) can provide a very nice professional touch.

Customer Assurances

Building trust and confidence with customers is at the forefront of any strong ecommerce site. Although customer assurance elements should be present site wide, they need to be obvious on the product page. You often need to gain customer trust and confidence before they will add an item to their cart.

If you offer warranties, guarantees etc… you should make sure these are in plain site on the product page. Letting the customer know that you have a 90 day guarantee (as an example) will help move them toward placing the item in their cart.

Product Price

It’s pretty obvious to most that customers want to know the price of a product before they commit to moving forward, yet I’ve seen sites stating “add the item to your cart to see the price”. I personally see no reason for this and in fact can point out two reasons I feel this would hurt your conversion.

  1. You are adding another step to the customer’s buying process and the more steps you add the greater your chance of losing them.
  2. You are taking away the customers choice by forcing them to add an item to the cart in order to get information which should be in plain view from the start.

Both hinder the customer experience and will likely cause a decrease in conversion. If you are selling products on the internet do your customers a favor by including the full price of the product on the product page.

Customer Reviews

With the recent growth of social media use, it should be no surprise customers are indicating in surveys that the presence of peer reviews is playing a bigger role in their decision to buy products.

Store issued product reviews can appear biased at times however, consumers feel that peer ratings provide a true picture of the worthiness of a given product. These should be included on every product page and the ability for a customer to write a review should be in plain site.

Go back and review your site for the inclusion of these elements. If you have them in place congratulations, if you don’t you are hurting your chances of winning more sales.

Tips for Avoiding Credit Fraud

There are a variety of ways that thieves can get your information and use your cards to make purchases. Here are a few of the more common ways:

You pay for dinner at the restaurant with your credit card. Your waitress takes the card to the register, processes the transaction and returns it. What you didn’t see was the copy of your card details that she made, and later used it to make purchases online and by phone!

You can’t believe your luck when you get a mailing that says you’ve won a free trip and all you need to do is join a travel club to get the free trip. After providing your credit card details to join the club, you never get the free trip and you start seeing charges on your statement that you didn’t make!

A thief finds copies or receipts of items containing your credit card details in the trash and then uses the information to make purchases.

Fraud like these examples cost cardholders and credit lenders several hundred million dollars every year. While you cannot prevent all fraud from occurring, there are reasonable things that you can do to help prevent and protect against credit fraud.

When using your credit card to pay for dinner at a restaurant, draw a line through all the lines above your signature that do not contain money amounts. So if you have left a cash tip on the table for th server, draw a line through the tip line on the receipt, or even write “left on table” in the space to make sure that the server doesn’t add a tip in after you leave! Try to keep an eye on the server when he or she takes the card to the register, processes it and returns to your table.

When you get a new credit card, sign the back as soon as you receive it. Carry credit cards in a different place from the rest of your cash, and even someplace other than your wallet if possible. Save all of your receipts so that you can compare amounts to your actual billing statements, and open the bills when they come in and verify that they are correct each month. Reconcile the account in the same way you would a checking account to make sure everything is correct.

When you are moving, notify your credit card companies immediately with the new address so your statements are not finding their way into someone else’s hands at the old address.

Don’t ever write your account number on the outside of an envelope, or on a postcard. Anyone could notice it and write the information down.

When shopping online, make sure the websites that you are shopping from are secure. They should have an “SSL” certificate displayed, or at least have a domain starting with “https”, where the “s” indicates it is a secure page and it’s okay to enter your card information.

If you must provide your credit card information by phone, be sure the company you are giving the information to is reputable.

Open your statements each month even if you know you did not make a purchase. Make sure that there are no purchases on the account that you didn’t make. If a purchase shows up on your billing statement that you are unsure of, call the company and find out who it is, and what they sell and see if you did make the charge and simply forgot. If you still don’t know who the company is, or know you did not make a purchase- get on the phone and call the card company as it is most likely a fraud case.

If you still find yourself a victim of credit fraud, you need to immediately call the credit lender. Once reported, the law protects you against any liability for unauthorized credit charges, and you will only be liable for up to $50, which is the maximum liability according to federal law.

Tips To Find Cheap Good Laptop Computers

If you want to find cheap good laptop computers, first you need to ask yourself what kind of laptop computer that you need. In general, there are two kinds of people. First, people who are seeking for the best technology. Second, people who do not care too much about technology, as long as it’s enough to help him doing basic things. If you are the first kind of people, you might need more than just an average laptop. Are there any cheap good laptop computers for this kind of people? Yes, there are plenty if you know how to find it.

If you think you need new notebook only for basic needs, obviously it’s easier to find one for you. There are plenty of cheap good laptop computers out there with less than $600 and they can help you to browse the internet world, processing words, and play some light games and movies. You might want to search for used laptop computers because obviously they are cheaper than if you buy new products.

I have some tips to help you with this problem. First, you need to know what kind of laptop do you want. Second, you must know your budget is limited. To buy cheap laptop, you must go to plenty of electronic stores to compare their prices. Bring a note with you so you will not only compare the prices but you can also compare the specifications and brand names.

To buy used but cheap laptop computers, try eBay. There are plenty of cheap and used laptops there but you must be careful because not all eBay sellers can be trusted, even if they have good reputation. If you want to buy new, cheap, and good laptop computers, the first place you want to try probably is Amazon. They have plenty of choices from different trademarks. Note all the prices from Amazon and eBay then go to electronic stores near you and compare all of them. It’s not easy but you need time to find cheap good laptop computers.

Do Your Workout Clothes Smell Even After Washing? Here’s The Answer!

As an avid mountain biker and owner of some pretty expensive Oakley and Pearl shorts and jerseys, I could not understand why overtime my gear smelled like a musty, mildewed towel after they came out of the wash. It got so bad I really could not stand to even put on my biking attire. Not only were my clothes smelling, I was beginning to notice they were beginning to feel like sandpaper and losing their wicking properties.

I felt like our laundry detergent was not doing a thing to clean my biking clothes, all in while, not really doing anything about the gross smell. I began a desperate search to find out why and if there was a solution that would clean the dirt out, not dissolve or weaken the synthetic fibers and most important, get the smell out of my bike clothes.

So I started where we all start a research project, the internet. I wanted to discover if others were having the same problem, why it was happening, and finally what to do about it. So to my delight, others were also in stink heaven. What was interesting was most of the issues tended to be with high tech fabrics. It seems the more expensive, the more they stunk over time. So why does synthetic or high tech sports clothing start to smell over time? The answer is in how dense the material is woven. The denser the material, the better it breaths and ultimately the better it wicks. Here lies the root of the problem. As your body sweats, these fabrics are designed to wick moisture away from the body but in the process trap fats and oils deep in the fibers. Because these fabrics are so dense normal laundry detergent is not molecularly small enough to get into these areas and wash away the fats and oils. Overtime bacteria start to hide out in the fibers eating the oils and fats. The digestive byproduct, yep… you guessed bacteria poop, is what caused the smells. Some sportswear is starting to advertise being antimicrobial. For the most part, these are chemicals that are washed into the fibers but after several washings they lose their bacteria fighting ability. Silver synthetics has been the only proven long term method, however, most of these product have been removed from the market for fear of ground water contamination.

So over the past 3 or 4 years, specially formulated detergents have hit the market designed to properly kill bacteria as well as wash away the trapped fats and oils. For the most part these products use hydrogen peroxide as the active cleaning agent. Basically hydrogen peroxide is water with an extra oxygen atom. One of these detergents is WIN Sports Detergent. They were the official detergent of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. It was the first time a detergent was allowed sponsorship at the Olympics. In my trial test of WIN, I discovered it did work. I especially liked the way it left my clothes smelling. After several washes, I also noticed my clothes were noticeable softer. Certainly a bonus! If you are troubled by the smell of your sports clothing, I hope this helps you solve the problem as it did me.

The Danger of Spending Money on Advertising

You can promote your web site in many ways for free on the internet and off the internet. You can give out business cards, put a sign in your yard or on your car, put an ad in the free classifieds, get listed on search engines, and so forth. Advertising for free has one thing in common no matter how you do it: Any business you get from your effort is free from expense. And by expense I mean actual outlays of cash. Advertising always has a cost and for free advertising, the cost is usually your time. Still, you can spend gobs of time advertising for free and you won’t worry about paying your mortgage payment, you just won’t get to watch as much TV or do things outside of your business as much.

When you start spending money on advertising one thing will be perfectly clear: You will get business but there is a cost that you will feel. And sometimes your paid advertising will get you less business than your free advertising. Yes that’s right, often you will get business that will not match what you were able to generate for free. So why spend money on advertising? Because eventually you will want to do things bigger than you are able to do with free advertising.

Paid advertising is not cheap. Some advertising is more effective than other advertising though. For instance, you can spend 25 to 50 cents per click through for Google advertising, but I notice that visitors from Google will spend more time on the site than visitors from StumbleUpon. Still, you will pay only 5 cents per click from StumbleUpon so you can get 5 – 10 more click throughs with them than Google. And StumbleUpon could actually be more effective per click because some people that visit will link to the site by giving it a thumbs up.

It is always good to test advertising, both media and format, before going larger with it. Usually I’ll spend $100 – $200 on a test to see what kind of results I get. If the test works well, the sky is the limit on how much you can spend. I used to have a contract with Excite to spend $3000 per month on banner advertising. You can go much larger than this though. You usually spend this kind of money after you start making at least this much money with your business, by the way, because advertising will not give you an immediate return on your investment.

In fact, it is probably a good idea to plan out your advertising, to see what your return on investment probably will be and how long it will take you to make money from your efforts. You can usually figure this out based on your current marketing results if you can gather the right kind of data. Mainly you want to know what an average customer spends over what period of time, and what kind of dropout rate you have.

In our past business, we tried advertising in many different ways. I used card decks, small display advertising in magazines, a full-page ad, banner advertising, and several other forms. Magazines have good hang times, as they stick around for long periods of time. Banner advertisements are better over time but die quickly. So there are different advertising strategies that can be used with different effects. Overall we found that our best advertising was what we could get for free, it just took a lot of time to get it.

How Much Should I Charge For My Commercial Cleaning Services?

You’ve bought all your cleaning supplies and equipment, told everyone you know that you have started a cleaning business and now you are ready to start bidding on jobs and getting down to work. So your next step is to meet with potential clients and put together a bid for their cleaning services. But how do you know what to charge for cleaning your potential client’s building?

Start off by remembering that you are in business to make a profit and earn a living. Sometimes the tendency is to price our services low in order to get our foot in the door. Pricing your services too low may mean you will end up working for very little per hour. And more importantly, will have little left over to reinvest in the growth of your company. There are cleaning companies that charge more than others and have all the work they can handle and there are companies that have lower fees yet are struggling to find work! Don’t sell yourself short or you will not be able to earn a living off your cleaning business.

The rates for commercial cleaning vary widely depending upon the area you live. Hourly rates are anywhere from $15 to $40 per hour depending on the type of services that you provide, whether or not you’re doing the work yourself, and your company’s overhead and expenses. Monthly square footage rates could run anywhere from $.05 to $.20 per square foot depending on the type of building you are cleaning and the frequency of cleaning. You’ll be able to bid a higher square footage price for medical facilities versus office buildings due to more specialized cleaning needs. You’ll likely bid a lower square footage price for large buildings versus small buildings. For example, you may bid $.08 per square foot for a 50,000 square foot building versus $.12 per square foot for an 8,000 square foot building.

You will most likely be charging your customers a monthly price and you will need to figure that price by estimating how long it will take to perform the services that your client has requested. The more productive you or your employees are, the higher the hourly production rate. If you’re able to clean 3,500 square feet per hour, your profit will be higher than if you’re only able to clean 2,500 square feet per hour, so adjust your price accordingly.

It’s also a good idea to find out what the “going rates” are in your area. A few phone calls to competitors may be necessary to get an idea of the basic charges in your area. Use a script when you call so you can compare apples to apples. So what do you say when you call? Try something like, “Hi, I have a small business office that I would like cleaned once a week. It is 3000 square feet and has two small restrooms. Can you give me a rough estimate of what you what you charge per month?” The person may or may not give you an estimate. Most contractors will insist on walking through the building, but it is worth a few phone calls so you have a ballpark figure on what cleaning companies in the area are charging.

To estimate what you should charge for cleaning a building, start by doing a walk-through with the building owner or manager. Keep track of the following:

* Frequency of cleaning (once a week, three times a week, five times a week). If frequency is one or two times per week, it’s best to estimate your time and multiply by your hourly rate. If cleaning 3 or more times per week you can estimate your time by the square foot.

* Overall square feet

* Types of floor surfaces and square footage of each (carpet, vinyl flooring, ceramic tile)

* Types of rooms – general office, break room, restrooms. Also note the number of toilets/stalls and fixtures in each restroom, as well as the types of restroom supplies used.

* Any special considerations – heavy traffic areas, elevators, unusual requests, etc.

* Make note of the specific services the client is seeking such as emptying trash, dusting, restroom cleaning, mopping and vacuuming.

The following services are specialized services and you should bid them separately, and list a per-service charge on your bid:

* Stripping and Waxing (.25¢ – .50¢ per square foot)

* Buffing/Burnishing (.03¢ – .07¢ per square foot)

* Machine Cleaning of Ceramic Tile floors (.12¢ – .21¢ per square foot)

* Carpet Cleaning (.12¢ – .25¢ per square foot)

* Carpet Spotting ($20 – $40 per hour)

* Cleaning appliances (microwave, refrigerator) – $10 – $35 per appliance

* Window Washing ($1.00 – $5.00 per pane)

Make sure you take enough notes so you can put together a realistic price that is fair to the client and one in which you will make a profit. After your first meeting with the client, go back to your office look through your notes and decide what it will cost you to clean the building. You may have to consult a production cleaning rate chart to determine how long it will take you and your staff to clean the building. Once you have an idea of how long it will take to clean the building you can put your cost estimate together:

* Estimate the time it will take by using a production cleaning rate chart or calculator.

* Determine your labor cost for cleaning the building one time.

* Determine your monthly labor cost to clean the building.

* Estimate a monthly cost for supplies. This will be a fairly low figure, perhaps 1 or 2% of monthly sales.

* Be sure to add in a profit margin!

Add up the figures and you will come up with your monthly cost. If you have access to a bidding calculator you will be able to put in a series of numbers and come up with a price. A bidding calculator will also show what profit you can expect to make. It is also advisable to add a first time cleaning charge. This is usually an hourly rate of perhaps $20 – $25 an hour. The first time you go through a building it will take longer and you may find the previous cleaning service may have left dirt in cracks and crevices that you will have to clean the first time through.

Once you have your price established, put your bid packet together. Your bid packet should specify what you are responsible for and what the client is responsible for (buying their own trash can liners, restrooms supplies, etc.). It should also include the monthly charge for cleaning services, how long the agreement is for, and the procedure to cancel the contract if either party is unhappy.

It is important to learn how to price your cleaning services so your customers know you are providing a professional service at a realistic price and so that you make a profit. After all, if you do not make a profit you won’t stay in business very long!

Copyright (c) 2006 The Janitorial Store

13 Social Networking Updates to Share to Help Small Business Owners

If you are like most small business owners, chances are that you have a Facebook Fan Page for your business and a Twitter account, but may not be keeping up with it due to time constraints or just not knowing what type of content to post to make the most of it.

By posting helpful, valuable content, you can improve retention and get new clients or members. It does take time and tenacity to build social relationships and if you get a few new customers a month and build relationships with your current ones it could be worth thousands of dollars to you.

Best of all, any new local fans or followers you add, will likely have a list of friends, families and businesses that are local as well who will get to see some of your social messages and invitations- so you have the possibility of building a group of warm leads or fans.

To help you figure out what you could post on your social networking sites for your Small Business,I’ve created 13 Social Network Updates for Your Small Business below. Please notice that the majority of the posting topics are of benefit to the reader and aren’t asking for a sale. This is key as well as that you post on a regular basis.

1. Upcoming Events- Do you have an open house, anniversary celebration or some other important event to promote this month? If so, be sure to create an event on your Facebook Fan Page and invite your fans and friends through Facebook.

2. Funny Video clips, Pictures, Bloopers- As long as it’s in good taste, share your online funny or amazing videos and pictures related to your business by sharing them on your social media accounts. You’d be surprised at how many comments and retweets you can get.

3. Public Appearances- Are you supporting a local event, demonstrating your product or services at a tradeshow, or donating items for a silent auction? Be sure and let everyone know through your social networking sites where your team is going to be. In addition, ask the organizations that you’re supporting to share it on their social networking pages too. For example, if you’re going to do the Great American Teach In at a school, mention the school in your posts and ask the school to post that you’ll be there too for greater exposure.

4. Fundraisers for a Cause-If you’ve got a fundraiser planned to help a charity or benefit a cause, then don’t be shy about it. Let people know what your business is doing to help, how your staff is making a difference and what your customers and the general public can do to join in and help.

5. Positive Messages-Share motivational quotes and feel good comments on your social sites. Just about everyone likes positive messages and quotes and it can help them understand that you’re company is a positive one.

6. Give Customers Recognition on your Social Sites –There are many opportunities to publicly thank or congratulate your customers or sponsors publicly on your Facebook Fan Page and other social sites. So give a public “shout out” to congratulate customers on their birthdays, for winning contests that your business is hosting, supplying feedback used to improve a product or service, etc.

7. Promote your YouTube Videos- Do you have a YouTube Channel with some entertaining, informative or instructional videos to share? Then share them on your social networking sites or even add your YouTube channel as a “tab” on your Facebook Fan Page.

8. Gift Certificates- Once in a while promote your gift certificates by mentioning them, putting them on sale or by having everyone enter to win one by asking fans to share or tweet: “I love (the name of your business) on Facebook or Twitter.” Select a winner at the end of the week and post their name congratulating them.

9. Give Bonuses to Your Fans and Followers-You can provide extra perks to those that follow or “like” you on Facebook, Twitter, etc by sharing links for additional information that’s of value to your target audience, extra discounts for your products or even share a service or new program with them before anyone else.

10. Ask for Opinions and Feedback- Post articles on what’s going on in your local area or things that are relevant to your business and ask everyone else what they think. Interact with those that reply. You can also ask their opinions on new menu items if you’re a restaurant, what colors, sizes, flavors, etc; they’d like to see your products in and more. Thanks those that respond publicly.

11. Contests –Host online photo caption contests, trivia questions, the best random act of kindness ideas and more to get members a chance to interact with your business.

12. Testimonials-Did someone say something nice about your business or employees? Then shamelessly let everyone know, by reposting the kind words and publicly thanking the author. It’s a great way to build social proof and also positively reinforce the act of praising your program.

13. The Benefits of Using Your Product and Services- Remind everyone how and why your product or services can benefits them. You can include your mission statement or tagline, but it’s great to specifically mention how and what benefits come “buying” from your company. Now, after reading this far, I’m sure you have plenty of ideas of what you could post each day on your social media accounts. There are tools out there to make your posting more time effective for you.

If you’d like help creating branded Facebook Fan Pages, creating content to share on your sites and/or having it shared and monitored for you, then please contact me (And feel free to “Like” my page) through: http://www.facebook.com/Kathyconsults

Managing Your Audio Book Collection With Your Computer

Many of us lauded the invention of digital cameras because now we could take as many pictures as we wanted to without fear of having to develop multiple rolls of film – for a great expense. But with this new technology, it seems we can’t stop taking pictures. And those pictures keep piling up on our computers, rarely seen and rarely sorted. With the new invention of audio books and the digital files for these, your audio book collection has the same chance of being lost on your computer, never fully utilized. Instead of wasting money on books you never read, maybe it’s time to organize your files in a more productive manner.

Make Sure You Have Enough Room

There’s nothing more frustrating than finding out your computer’s memory is all filled up. You might want to download an audio book to your audio book collection, but can not because you have too much on your hard drive. Instead of getting out yet another flash drive (that you might lose too easily), it’s time to check your computer’s memory to make sure it can store your audio books. In a PC, go to the Computer Menu and then click on the hard drive you are using for storage – usually C. Right click on this folder and then you will see the disk space you have left. If you have too much of your computer’s hard drive filled up, your computer will run too slowly and you will have troubles adding any more audio books to your personal collection.

Organize the Books You Already Have

With audio book organizer software, you can easily manage your audio book collection on your computer. This software will allow you to sort your titles by title or by author or even genre. In doing so, you might begin to see some audio files that you don’t necessarily want to keep. When you see these files, you can then choose to delete them, giving you more room for even more audio books. This software can also help you to find audio book files on your computer if you haven’t saved them all in one location – a common mistake for new computer users. The catalog you create with this software can be easily updated as you see fit, while also allowing you the opportunity to see what books you might still want to purchase and download.

With your audio book collection under control, you can take full advantage of this wonderful technology. Whether you listen to your books on a CD or on an mp3 player, you will always know what books you have available and what you still need to ‘read’ when you have free time during a workout or a drive home from work. Instead of ‘losing your books to disorganization, let your computer do all the work. Sure, you might need to input some information at first, but when that’s done; the audio book software will organize it and arrange it in an efficient way.

Blog Marketing – Secret to Google Domination

Are you ready for the secret?

The secret that not only generates content and links, but it also generates leads and customers, and pretty much runs on auto-pilot?

Do you want that info?

OK here it is…

Create your own blog.

Duh! OK, Leonardo, everybody knows that. What’s so secret about it.

Read on, trust me.

So, you’re thinking what sort of a secret is that, let me explain further, you do not want to miss this.

Here’s how this incredible system works:

You create a blog which is relevant for your niche and you allow the following:

Free Article Submission

Free Business Listings

And, you ask for nothing in return.

When someone arrives at your blog they sign up for free to add their business and their articles, your email auto-responder then gives them the instructions of what they need to do, and you make it very easy for them, as a result you will get plenty of response, and don’t forget, because your blog will be generating visitors via the search engines the traffic comes in on autopilot, and the more people that sign up for free and add their business and submit their articles the more pages and traffic your blog receives, and it just keeps growing, generating more traffic and content by itself.

But how do you monetize this I hear you ask?

Simple, you offer a range of online services for the businesses who have a free listing on your site.

And, because they signed up to your auto-responder, your automated email messages take care of letting all your leads know about your services, which could include; paid advertising, web design, SEO, email marketing systems, that’s all the stuff you used to create your blog system in the first place, so once you know how to create your blog system you how to create the things you are going to sell to your leads.

Don’t want to offer those services yourself? Team up with someone who does.

So, it’s a lead generating machine and you don’t have to write the content, you will need to in the beginning for a few months and you may want to keep writing to steer it in a certain direction, but you don’t have to.

You educate your list to fact that it helps them to include their articles with a link back to their site.

And your auto-responder reminds them once a month to add their news.

It’s an amazing system that I use and others use to generate traffic, leads and income.

Is it going to take a bit if setting up?

Of course it is, but once the work is done it gives Blog Marketing a whole new meaning.