7 Signs Your Business Is Stuck In The Past

When it comes to running a healthy and successful business, entrepreneurs have a variety of tips, from investing in team building to launching new products. Ultimately, your growth strategy is the result of a thorough market analysis and will naturally depends on many factors, including your competition and your in-house resources. However, there is something that all successful business owners can agree on and it’s the importance of an innovative business. While you may not need to create the product of tomorrow, you should at least make sure that your company is moving with the flow. Businesses that are built on obsolete strategies and processes are doomed to collapse soon or later. But how can you tell whether your company is too old-fashioning for its own good? Is keeping formal office wear a sign of living in the past or is it part of an expected business etiquette? As legitimate as the question is – especially when you come across so many trendy startups that value casual workwear – there are other elements that indicate it’s time to bring your company into the 21st century. Here are the top 7 things you need to change before it’s too late to maintain a running business.

IRL training is a waste of resources

#1. You still think training is a waste of money

If you still schedule days off-site for your staff training throughout the year, then it’s fair to assume that you might find it difficult to keep costs low. Indeed, the costs of travel can be significant, especially if you need to plan for an accommodation overnight and for meals. Naturally, you also need to make sure that your team can maintain a positive productivity throughout the training period, which means that you try not to send the entire team on training days at the same time. For small business owners, there is nothing worse than training as it can drain the budget very rapidly. Except that you’re doing it wrong. You could provide your staff with access to a digital training platform, such as eLearning to reduce costs. More importantly, this option lets your employees manage their training time as they see fit throughout the day. You’ll be surprised to find that most people choose to go through online lessons at night, in the comfort of their home. In other words, you’ll be saving money and productivity costs!

#2. You think flexible work means no work

You’re opposed to flexible working. You’ve always worked from 9 to 5 and you can’t see any reason why anybody would want special arrangements for their day. Unfortunately, strict working hours can damage the overall productivity of your team, especially as most people are trying to cope with personal appointments and schedule at the same time. If someone has to see the doctor, they need to take a day off. This isn’t practical. Flexible working options enable people to manage their day effectively. More importantly, flexible workers experience less stress, which means that they can focus better.

#3. You don’t look for smart health management solutions

Most companies have fixed health management solutions, including paid sick days and health insurance. However, a proactive approach, such as the one here, can help businesses to keep track of employees’ health and ensure that the team can get a 24/7 access to a network of certified doctors for online appointments. People who are more sensitive to stress, for example, could benefit from real-time telephonic coaching as they need it. The bottom line is that one solution never fits the variety of individuals in a company. It’s foolish not to look after your employees, as they are, after all, your most important asset.

#4. Your administration is paper-based

You have a paper archive that you keep on shelves by your desk. From an environmental point of view, you might be killing entire forests with your printing habit. More importantly, paper documents are not practical in a modern business situation. Imagine paper)based patient records in a hospital, for instance. The documents need to be archived in a searchable manner, which requires additional costs for cross-indexing and labeling. Additionally, if a record is misplaced, it’s the entire history of a patient that disappears, which could lead to costly mistakes, especially if the hospital can’t find any record on the patient’s allergies to medication. In other words, as long as you don’t switch to a digital archiving system, you might be putting your business at risk, and potentially other people too.

#5. Your customers can only contact you by phone or email

Young customers like interactive business communications. Most Millennials turn to social media to for their customer service complaints and queries, which can lead to negative reviews if your business is too slow to pick them up. Additionally, web visitors might need real-time answers, especially if they’re shopping online. A chat function on the website can ensure that your visitors can find the answers they need to commit to purchase. If they need to call your number to find out more, it’s likely that they will buy from a competitor.

Customers connect on social media

#6. Millennials don’t stay

Millennials are often described as the job-hopping generation. In fact, 60% Millennials are open to a job opportunity at any point in time. If you can’t keep young adults in your company, you need to realize that people leave a business that didn’t meet their requirements. What do Millennials want? They want recognition for their work, especially in a cross-generational team. They also want to be listened to, through a feedback loop. Their opinions matter as their the largest population in the workplace.

#7. You don’t want a content marketing strategy

Finally, if you don’t update your website regularly, you are missing out on an effective content marketing strategy. From keep up with the market innovation to remaining visible to your audience, content creation is at the core of your digital presence. If your website doesn’t have a blog part or if you don’t join hot topics on social media, your business will become irrelevant to your target.

From digitalizing your processes to understanding the needs of your employees, it’s time to kickstart your business rejuvenation project if you want to secure your survival on the market.

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Country Living – Could You Hack It?


Do you fancy moving to a big home out in the country? For quite a few families, this is the ultimate dream. They love the idea of leaving the busy, bustling city behind them and escaping to the fresh air and tranquility of nature. It’s certainly a lot more relaxing to live out in the country, and you won’t have to deal with any city stress and nosey neighbors. But do you really think that this is the best life for you?

Sure, moving to the countryside might sound like the perfect thing to do, but it actually isn’t always as peachy as it might appear on the surface. Moving your whole family out of the city is quite a big deal. It will be a lot for you all to adjust to, as you will need to get used to not being so close to many amenities and facilities anymore. Are you sure you are ready to give up all of that convenience just for some peace and quiet? Not many people are!

Still considering a move to the country? It’s certainly still worth a shot. You just need to weigh up all of the pros and cons before you do start to make the move. Here are a few things that you need to consider when you are making your decision.


You’ll Be Far From Friends And Family

One of the main things that puts people off moving to the country is the fact that they will be a lot further away from all of their friends and family. If you are particularly close to your nearest and dearest, then you might find that distance very difficult to deal with at first. But this is something that can be quite easy to overcome – over time, you will get used to being away from your friends and family and your feelings of homesickness will ease. There are some things you can do to ensure you don’t miss them too much, though, such as inviting them over to stay for weekends. Plus, you will always be able to go back to the city from which you moved if you ever want to visit them and your old life! And don’t forget that thanks to all the great tech in our lives these days, staying in touch is a lot easier than what it ever was. You can call, text, Skype, or Whatsapp all of your loved ones every day if you want to!


You Might Need To Put The Kids In A Different School

If you are moving with children, then you need to think about how it will affect them and their schooling. Obviously, the best option is to keep them in their current school. If you are moving to a village that is on the outskirts of the city then this could be entirely possible. There are often good school bus and other transport links between cities and their satellite villages. Even if there isn’t a public transport route that kids in the village use to get to school in the city, the distance might not be too far and you might be able to drive them to school each day. This could be a convenient option if you continue to work in the city. However, if leaving them in their current school isn’t an option, then you could face some problems. Firstly, the kids themselves might oppose being moved to a different school as they will be parted from all of their friends. They might be very unhappy about the prospect of leaving all of their classmates. But if you tell them that they can visit each other as often as possible then they might come around to the idea. Not only that, though, but you can tell them that they will make a lot of new friends at their new school.


The Commute To Work Will Be A Lot Longer

I’ve mentioned that you could take the kids to their school in their city as you commute to your current job, but that might not be possible. It all depends on how far away from the city you want to be! Not only that, though, but your commute will depend on how you want to travel to work. If it isn’t too far, you could drive to work. But you should bear in mind that there might be hundreds of other people commuting into the city on a daily basis, and that could result in extremely busy roads. You might end up in traffic jams on each leg of your journey which could add on some considerable time to your commute. That could really frustrate and anger you! If you’d rather not drive, you could always see about commuting by train or by bus. But then this means you have to rely on public transport which isn’t always that reliable! It might also be expensive unless you are able to get a seasonal ticket like newyorkpass.com. If you think that commuting into the city is going to be too much of a pain, you could simply get a new job that is closer to your new country home. Or why not cut out the commute completely by becoming a freelancer and working for yourself? This might not be possible; it will depend on the job that you do and all the training you have so far been through. If you think that you will be able to do, it is definitely something that you should consider, though, as working from home will be a lot less stressful than trying to get in and out of the city every day!


Bad Weather Could Be Very Isolating

Bad weather doesn’t affect life in the city too much because there is always plenty of action taken to prevent too many disruptions. For instance, streets and roads are always cleared and gritted with salt during periods of heavy snowfall. Unfortunately, though, there isn’t enough demand for this kind of action out in the country as such snowfall won’t cause too many delays and disruptions. After all, there aren’t quite as many people living out in the country! So, you need to make sure that you are well prepared for periods of bad weather. Otherwise, they will become quite isolating. You should get some snow tyres from a company like telletire.com so that you are able to drive through snowy and icy conditions without too many problems. It’s also important that you buy some things to leave in your car like a snow shovel, a spare change of clothes, and a torch just in case you do get stuck out on the country roads. You should also stock up on canned and dried food at home just in case you get snowed in for a few days. By doing so, you will have plenty of food to keep you going. It’s also a good idea to get a generator as there are often a lot more power cuts out in the country compared to the city during very bad weather and storms.


Making New Friends Can Be Hard

Once you move to a village, you will need to try and make some connections and get to know people so that you can have some friends living nearby. This will also help you settle in as well as making new friends in the village can help you feel a part of the close-knit community. Unfortunately, though, this isn’t always quite as easy as it might sound. People won’t come to you usually, you will need to get out there and put yourself in situations that make it easy to meet people. For instance, most villages have regular events like fairs and dances. You should attend these as often as you can with your whole family. You can then introduce yourself to the other villages and, over time, you will get to know more people and will make some very good friends. It’s also worth trying to get onto any committees and organizational boards that are in the village as this will also help you get to know more friendly faces.


Housing Might Not Be A Great Standard

Lots of people move to the country because the price of property is a lot cheaper compared to houses and apartments that are in the city. And this is usually true – if you want a regular family size home, then you will find the cost in rural areas can be slightly cheaper. But that is often because the property isn’t always up to scratch. Most homes out in the country are old and fairly dated, which means they often come with a lot of issues and problems. Most people find that they need to carry out some renovation as soon as they move in. If that sounds like too much work, maybe moving to the country isn’t for you.

Still excited to move to a rural area? Good luck with the big move!

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