Mark Salinas – Insight and Action

Re: Insights and Action

Archive for June, 2008

Domain Name

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 27, 2008

The identity of your company is very important, some tips:

1. Create an online identity. Get a Web domain now, even if you aren’t building your site until later.

2. Pick three domain names that fit your business. Your first choice may be taken, so have a few domain name ideas. If your top three picks are available, consider getting all three. It’s not too expensive and then you have flexibility to create a site for a special promotion or use a special landing page for an event.

3. Check out domain name vendors. You can register your domain with your choice of vendor. Here are some well-known, domain name registrars:

Network Solutions, http://www.networksolutions.com

GoDaddy, http://www.godaddy.com

Domaindirect.com, http://www.domaindirect.com

4. Keep your renewal current. Don’t forget to renew your domain name. Businesses have been known to let a name expire and then find that their Web site has disappeared from the Internet. Don’t let that be you.

5. Once you have a domain, name your URL mycompany.com, place your URL on every marketing and business document that you produce. Let your company be known.

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Common Sense Customer Service

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 26, 2008

We always need to work on improving our customer service skills. Some points that could help:

1)Educate your customers about your products and services.

2)Make sure items are delivered in good condition. Call the customer after delivery and if a piece is not right, offer to fix it or replace it.

3)Offer your customers personal attention, even if they don’t buy anything. Engage them in pleasant conversation and find out why they’re not buying. Make use of what you learn.

4)Go out of your way to meet customer needs. One interior designer got draperies made for a client in a hurry so they would be ready for an at-home wedding.

5) Show appreciation. Make sure employees always thank customers for their business. Consider sending occasional handwritten thank-you notes.

6)RESPONSIVENESS…always respond to an email or voice mail within a consistent period time.

“A little common sense can go a long way!”

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Disaster Recovery

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 25, 2008

Often an organization tends to side on a reactive approach, it is important for the stability and continuity of a company to be proactive and prepare for unforeseen scenarios. Some tips for disaster recovery:


1) Recognize that your business can suffer a natural disaster. Small businesses the world over have been affected by disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions and fire.
2)Develop your recovery plan before disaster strikes. Make sure everyone in your company is familiar with the plan and knows what steps to take in emergencies.

3)Have adequate insurance. You’ll need coverage not only for property damage and loss (including inventory), but also for business interruption.

4)Draw up a list of telephone numbers for all employees. Assign certain employees to call others if disaster strikes. That way, you can learn who is all right and who needs help, and you can quickly communicate instructions about your business.

5) Don’t forget your computer system. Keep backup programs and duplicate records (accounts receivable, client information, and the like) at a different, safe site.

Obviously much more detail and planning should be involved but these steps should be a good start.

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Interaction at Work

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 24, 2008

I think it is important that the “door of communication” is always open. Some good steps to ensure a solid environment:

A) Employees want to trust you and you to trust them. Begin by being trustworthy and extending trust.

B) Employees want good two-way communication. Begin by being a good listener.

C) Employees want to be challenged. Set forth your vision and goals clearly and then let your workers exercise their creativity and authority in meeting your goals.

D) Employees want accountability. Not only should you hold them accountable for their own performance but you should measure your own performance as well.

E) Employees want recognition. Offer praise and express appreciation at every opportunity.

Let’s not forget about our best asset the employee. A positive environment is a successful environment.

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Fostering Innovatiion

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 23, 2008

In the world today a successful company is always looking at new ideas to help grow the business.

Some ideas:

Show your employees that you think of innovation as an ongoing process. Some ideas will work and some won’t. Keep experimenting.

Listen, listen, listen. Innovation is a collaborative process.

Be open to “accidents,” the unexpected connections that spark new ideas. Inspiration comes from everywhere—often from outside your own field.

Get Feedback from your own employees—they know the company’s problems and goals best. This is probably one time you don’t need outside consultants.

Be patient. Creativity can’t be hurried.

Coming up with new ideas should be an ongoing process…….always in the plan.

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Developing Policies for Your Business

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 20, 2008

It is important to have a clear definition of policy within the company, some basic tips:

A) Employees are your most important assets, so hire the best, provide training and growth opportunities, and recognize good performance.

B) Have a meaningful, concise and realistic job description for each employee. Make sure you review it with the employee and that it is understood.

C) Be sure employees know what is expected of them. Establish high standards of performance ethics.

D) Offer specialized training or skills enhancement to your current employees. Promoting from within encourages and motivates your greatest assets─your current workforce.
E) Create a New Employee Referral Bonus Program. Describe your needs in title and duties and offer a reward for your “most wanted.”

Having a concise plan is always a positive start.

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Performance Reviews

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 17, 2008

It is review time, are you prepared?  Some tips:

1. Concentrate on what you and the employee can achieve together in the future. Don’t use performance reviews just as a means of telling workers everything they’re doing wrong.
2. Strive for consistency and fairness. Apply performance criteria to all employees, not just a few.
3. Encourage employees to evaluate themselves and to discuss their own strengths. Your view of an employee and the employee’s view of himself should match fairly well. Otherwise, it’s a warning signal.
4. Be honest about poor performance, but not brutal. Document your observations in writing.
5. If you’re small enough that constant communication and feedback are taking place, you may be able to avoid performance reviews. But don’t send the message that performance isn’t critical.

2600 Phrases for Effective Performance Reviews by: Paul Falcone

It is important for the morale of the employee that performance reviews are done consistently. The employee could start to come to their own conclusions if communication is lacking.

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Fathers Day…Remembering

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 15, 2008

A twist of direction today for the dads on Fathers Day. Why Fathers Day?

Fathers Day is a celebration inaugurated in the early twentieth century to complement Mother’s Day in celebrating fatherhood and male parenting, and to honor and commemorate fathers and forefathers.

I usually think of Fathers Day as time at a picnic or BBQ with dad and family.

But let us remember the fathers for what the day is meant to be.

.

.

Some nice words within these links:

With the Passage of Years, a Coming Together

A Father Remembered

The Most Caring, Nicest Loving Man

A Driving Force

The Father With a Close Eye

Toddler to Teens

How about you? Do you have a story to share about your father?

Happy Fathers Day!

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Respect In the Workplace

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 12, 2008

“All I want is some respect.”

Have you heard these words before? My bet is, we all have at least once or more. What types of conclusions do you make when looking at somebody, or when they look at you? Respect or disrespect is all about action or non-action. The feeling of respect towards another starts with our thoughts, and that is where we have an opportunity to increase the level of respect in our workplaces. If you want respect, give respect. To give respect, you have to take steps and be “Socially Aware” of your environment. Pay attention to judgments and thoughts that are ever evolving in your brain.

Try to avoid “labeling” individuals into groups: “Trusting, “Not Trusting,” “Competent” Incompetent.”

Try something positive:

Take on conversations with individuals you normally don’t converse with. “Take charge” and engage them in conversation. Ask for feedback and opinions of those you normally wouldn’t. This type of interaction should open some doors for more open dialogue.

If you are in a situation where someone’s hard work and efforts are being unrecognized, speak up for that individual. Always follow honesty and openness when creating and implementing employee policies.

If someone’s comments or behavior seems disrespectful, speak with him or her in a diplomatic manner.

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Promote a Healthy Work Environment

Posted by Mark Salinas on June 10, 2008

How is the mood at your workplace? Does the environment lack a jump, maybe some energy is missing in the air? Sometimes through complacency comes lack of motivation that can lead to discontent. Possibly a healthy change can help?

Here are 6 tips for starters:

1-Give the employees who work on a computer a hands and wrists break every 30-40 minutes.

2-Ensure healthy beverages and food are available within the workplace.
3-Suggest an outdoor walking meeting (walk and talk).
4-Promote health via memos and bulletin boards etc.
5-Set up a plan through a local health club.
6-Encourage employees to move more.*

*With motion and activity comes the risk of injury. Learn some preventative measures at Ergonomic Resource.

With a healthier environment, a positive more productive workplace is sure to follow!

Remember to lead by example!

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