Spring clean your computer

Getting organized is a natural part of spring. I’ll bet you have the urge to shed the excess and start fresh. Your workspace is no different. Somehow, purging the paper, putting away the clutter and creating space gives you a sense of renewal.

My advice is to go with that feeling!

When you’re in the mood to do some spring cleaning, remember your computer. Although you can’t see all the clutter that lurks behind the screen, it is there. It’s sneakier than paper clutter. It slowly clogs up your computer making it slow and sluggish … the perfect conditions for wasting your time waiting for files or applications to load.

This week’s Shortcut will help you spring clean one particular area of your computer where the digital dust bunnies love to collect.

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Messy desk? Here’s a simple solution.

Do you have a messy desk?

When you need to find something, do you know exactly where it is … or do you waste time and energy searching for it?

If this sounds familiar I’ve got one word that will change everything.

To be efficient and productive, you need it … and I”ll show you how to get it. [Read more…]

Your conference planning checklist

Image of a Conference AgendaIf you’re planning to attend a conference in the near future, there is a lot to do to prepare. It takes more than bringing along some business cards and a notepad. Being organized will help reduce your stress and keep you focused on the speakers and the people you are meeting.

Here is a thorough checklist to help you get the most value from your time and the money you’ve invested. At the end of the article, you can download a PDF version. [Read more…]

Close sales faster using eSignatures

Electronic signatureIn every business there comes a time when you need to get someone’s signature on a document. Whether it’s a proposal, approval forms, working agreements, contracts etc. the goal is the same: make the process of sending, signing and managing documents easy.

The truth is your business efficiency will come to a grinding halt the minute you need someone to sign a document. If you’re like most solo and micro business owners, you still rely on your clients taking time out of their busy day to print, scan and email or fax the document back to you. This is a colossal waste of time and effort. Not only is it time consuming and cumbersome, it often leads to delays.

Anything that takes a person more than a few minutes to complete will  fall to the bottom of their To Do list. Guaranteed.

Before you know it, you’re spending time and effort following up with emails and phone calls … that is if it doesn’t slip through the cracks.

Here’s how to make the signing process easier. [Read more…]

5 tips to protect your financial documents at tax time

Tax Time Sticky NoteConsider the Heartbleed virus as your wake-up call to get serious about protecting your private information, especially at tax time.

Whether it’s your emails, social media posts or personal/business records, Heartbleed is a reminder of how vulnerable you are when you’re online.

But there are other culprits — fire, flood and theft — just as eager to snatch away your private data.

So how do you keep your financial data safe?

Ensuring your private information is safe and secure is up to you. As you prepare to file your taxes, you’ll want to consider putting some systems in place to protect your financial records.

Here are 5 tips you can use to protect your financial records at tax time [Read more…]

How to stop babying your business

Baby On Board

My little bundles of joy are about to turn 13!

My daughter … and my business … are about to become full-fledged teenagers. I know it sounds cliché, but they really do grow up fast.

We got the call from the adoption agency during the same week I signed my first big retainer client in my business. Nothing like adding stress to the mix!

My business and my daughter grew up together

When we brought home our daughter we were ecstatic. We excitedly bought all the stuff she’d need: a stroller, crib, car seat, toys and many cute outfits. Our world changed forever.

The same was true for my business. I excitedly created a logo, built the website and got my business cards printed. I was full of hope for the future. Finally, I was my own boss. I had a say in every part of my business. [Read more…]