Best Ways to Run a Business Meeting

Best Ways to Run a Business Meeting

Introduction:

Business meetings are often an essential part to running a company efficiently and smoothly. The purpose of most business meetings is to get everyone attending up to date on what is occurring within the company, and what changes may need to be made for the future. However, often times, the point of the business meetings can become forgotten and can lead to more confusion among team members. In order to keep these meetings both focused and short, they will need to be run efficiently. There are a few things that you should remember, for your next meeting that will help you run it much better.

Clarity:

You should make the point of the meeting apparent from the moment that you start the meeting. Guide the discussion towards this objective and ensure that your team does not stray far from the objective. Consider addressing any other concerns, aside from concerns towards the meeting goal, after the meeting or during another meeting. By discussing exactly what you need to, you will create much more efficient and focused meetings. Rather than creating confusion among your team members, each member will be on the same understanding of why everybody is meeting.

Focus:

Once you have determined what you are meeting for, make sure to stay focused on that point. If there are multiple points that need to be made, address the most important points first. Anything that can be, or should be, done outside of the meeting needs to be addressed at another time. If there are important concerns, unrelated to the meeting topic, ask for your team members to write them down and communicate them with you or other team members at a later time. Utilize a time of the week where all of your team members are available and are not distracted by other projects.

Time:

Business meetings tend to run longer than originally planned. This is sometimes
due to the questions and concerns that people normally have, a misunderstanding of the discussion presented, or the fact that the meeting started later than scheduled. The first thing that you will want to ensure is that your meetings begin exactly when they are supposed to begin. As you prepare for your meetings, think of the needs of your team, and areas of your topics that may create a misunderstanding; try to simplify these areas so that your members can understand them the first time through.

Conclusion:

Running a business meeting can be confusing at first, especially when involved with people who are very creative and have different ideas. However, as time goes on, you will get better at running meetings and accomplishing the goals of each meeting. By the end of your meetings, you want to make sure that each team member understands what the point of the meeting was and what needs to be done after the meeting. By accomplishing these two things, you will know whether you will need to adjust the way that you approach meetings.

Mark Angelo co-founded the Investment Manager in August 2009 and two affiliated investment managers.

 

The Impact Business Trips Have on Your Health

The Impact Business Trips Have on Your Health

Traveling is both good and bad for your health. On one hand, you are finally outside of the office. On the other hand, you increase the risks of illness when you go into unknown territories. Learn more about how business trips have different effects on health.

Improve Back Posture:

Most office workers sit at the desk for hours on end. Not sitting with your spine straight increases the risks of back problems. If you do something too strenuous, you could easily throw your back out and feel pain for weeks.

A business trip requires that you step out of the office for a few days. As you move from one location to another, the back does not remain in the same curved position. In this short period of time, your back condition improves dramatically.

Reduce Computer Dependency:

An addiction to using the computer or Internet is a psychological condition. Your health suffers when you cannot function properly without using technology. First, you develop a poor back posture from sitting at the computer for too long. Then, you develop vision problems and, if you type often, strain in your wrists. Being away from the computer helps you to recover your mental and physical health.

Increase Stress:

Unfortunately, a business trip has just as many disadvantages as advantages. You could already have high stress levels because of your work or home life. On a bad business trip, your stress levels could increase three or four times more. A natural disaster, car accident, plane crash or armed robbery could happen to any traveler. As a result, your high blood pressure levels increase and affect your health in the long run.

Risks of Food Poisoning:

Whether you are traveling for business or recreation, you want to go out to restaurants. Most people want to try the local cuisines and do not worry much about sanitation. However, in some developing countries, personal hygiene is not a major concern. You have high risks of food contamination and poisoning that affect travelers. Once you are poisoned, you are left with prolonged days of illness and a few medical bills.

Everyone knows that traveling has its inconveniences like flight delays or lost luggage. However, it’s hard to determine exactly what business trips do to your health. For some people, it’s obvious – they had a car crash that resulted in risky surgery. They may have encountered food poisoning and never been able to recover since. Be aware of the problems that could affect you as you prepare for the next business trip.

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

How to Find a Good Financial Adviser

How to Find a Good Financial Adviser

As a wise businessperson, it is advisable to handle your finances well. You should make savings and utilize them in the future to expand your business. However, if your company grows successfully, the process of handling your personal and business money may become stressful and confusing. For instance, if you are not good in accounting, you may need a professional to manage your finances and advice you appropriately to make the right investments. One of the key advantages of employing a financial adviser is that the professional will guide you to use your money wisely, make viable investments, and utilize the available opportunities to enhance growth in your business.

When choosing a financial adviser, you need to be cautious to avoid getting ripped off and lose millions of dollars. The article below provides some essential tips that you need to consider when choosing a financial adviser.

Qualifications:

You should not gamble with your hard earned money. Therefore, your personal financial adviser should have the right qualifications. When choosing the professional, you should always check his or her credentials. Your adviser should have a diploma or a degree in financial planning. A competent expert in the field will give you the right financial advice and protect your business against avoidable losses.

Get Recommendations:

Personal recommendations will assist you to get a competent personal financial adviser. You should seek help from your friends and fellow businesspersons before hiring a financial adviser. They will direct you to the right professional who will assist you in the management of your money. Additionally, you can visit the bank that you use to save your money and seek advice from the branch manager. The branch manager will assist you to choose a reliable financial adviser.

Location:

Geographical location is a sensitive matter to consider when working with a financial adviser. The person who is transacting business on your behalf should not be far away from you. In case of any financial questions, your financial adviser should be ready to give answers on a 24/7 basis. Therefore, before hiring the professional, you should ensure that his or her office is accessible and reachable all the time.

Experience:

Apart from qualifications, you need also to consider experience if you want to get a competent financial professional. If you want helpful advice, your financial adviser should prove that he or she has been in the industry for several years. Additionally, the expert should have a good reputation for guiding a good number of clients to financial success.

Speak to Existing Clients:

When choosing your financial adviser, you should ask him or her to allow you to speak to his or her past and existing clients. These clients will give you their experiences with the professional. You should choose a financial adviser who has the most positive reviews from his or her clients.

Conclusively, you should not consider a professional who overcharges his or her clients. Before signing a contract with your financial adviser or planner, you need to make sure that you have a clear understanding of the amount of money that you will be charged.

Mark Angelo co-founded the Investment Manager in August 2009.

Important Personal Finance Tips for Millennial’s

Important Personal Finance Tips for Millennial's

As younger adults, millennial’s often fall into the mindset that plagued older generations in early adulthood. It is common for young adults to live frivolously with the general mentality that there is plenty of time later in life for saving and investing. This mentality can unfortunately prevent you from achieving financial security earlier in life. In addition, it can even lead to the development of bad money management habits that ultimately impact you for the next several decades or longer. These important finance tips are essential for millennial’s who are eager to improve money management.

Prepare an Accurate Budget:

A personal budget is the quintessential financial management tool. You may be aware that a budget shows all income sources and all expenses for a specific time period, and this time period is usually a month. However, many people create a budget and do not look at it again for months. To be truly effective, you must use your budget regularly to track spending, to make financial decisions and more. Your budget should regularly be compared against actually spending and income so that you always know where you are financially. You cannot realistically know if you can afford to buy that new shirt online or enjoy a meal out at a restaurant with friends if you do not use some type of accurate budgeting strategy.

Create Thoughtful Financial Goals:

Everyone has financial goals, but many young adults have not formalized long-term or short-term goals. They simply think that someday they would like to take an amazing vacation overseas and buy a house or a condo. The reality is that very few people will achieve major goals related to finances without planning and making regular progress to achieve those goals. Write down all short-term and long-term goals. Research an accurate amount of money needed to achieve those goals. In addition, assign a timeline to those goals. This will help you to determine how much money you need to save on a regular basis to achieve your goal within the specified timeline.

Save Regularly:

There are multiple reasons why you should save money regularly. First, every adult regardless of age should have an emergency savings account. This account should have at least the equivalent of your expenses for three months. This should be a starting goal, and over time, you may wish to increase the balance in your account to the equivalent of six or even 12 months of expenses. You also need to save regularly to achieve the financial goals that you have established. A portion of your funds should also be saved for retirement. It may seem too soon to worry about retirement, but millennial’s who start saving for retirement sooner can more easily achieve their goals. More than that, they may even be able to retire many years sooner. Your budget should be updated to reflect savings for all of these goals.

Properly managing your money is not difficult to do. You simply need to develop smart habits and pay regular attention to your budget and financial goals. These tips will get you well on your way to improving your money management efforts.

 

Mark Angelo is a Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

Best Places in the UK to Start a Business

Best Places in the UK to Start a Business

The entrepreneurial spirit has busted all over the UK. In 2017, for instance, the nation saw an approximate of 80 businesses launched every hour. Happy times for most new entrepreneurs. With this economic advancement, it is no surprise that you can now start a business anywhere in the UK. Nonetheless, a startup will naturally have higher odds of thriving in specific locations compared to others. With that fact in mind, where can you find the best combination of creativity, support, and talent that will let your business survive and flourish beyond your wildest imaginations?

1. Oxford:

According to a 2017 survey executed by UK’s domain name registry, Nominet UK, Oxford is Britain’s current hotspot for startups. This comes as no surprise, in light of the fact that startups in the city have access to more than 20,000 of Oxford’s hardworking and smartest individuals.
The reputable Oxford University offers the city a never-ending supply of fresh graduates seeking the next big opportunities, particularly in the science and technology sectors. Better yet, in case you would like to take a short break from launching your business, Oxford boasts excellent standards of living you can avail. Being a historic city, Oxford features a mesmerizing scenery and architecture, as well as sovereign bars and shops. Nonetheless, note that Oxford is by far, not the cheapest city in this blog post, because its housing prices skyrocket way above the United Kingdom Average. Here is a fun fact though; “Survival rates of startup businesses in Oxford from 2010 to 2017 have hit a rather impressive 41%.”

2. Leeds:

After London, Leeds has been regarded to as the number two financial capital in the UK since it generates an estimated 4% of the nation’s total output. According to a 2015 study by the Centre of Entrepreneurs, Leeds had the fourth highest number of startups. Even better, in 2017 (two years down the line), EY named Leeds the best destination for FDI (Foreign Direct Investments) in the North. We can attribute Leed’s astounding success to its close connections with Manchester and the fact that Startups have access to one of the highest population of brilliant minds in the nation. Leeds is home to 3 prominent universities including, The University of Leeds, The University of Law, and Leeds Becket University.
Startups in Leeds have a survival rate of 42%.

3. Cardiff:

With Cardiff Enterprise Zone focusing its attention on Life Sciences, Creative Sector, Cybersecurity, and Fintech, City of Arcades works hard to lure startup businesses with its government incentives such business rates relief schemes. According to Mr. Chris Sutton, Chairman of the Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone, startups in the city will avail different forms of perks, such as close supports and local research into legal tech and Fintech.

4. Cambridge:

Just like Oxford, Cambridge has been making grounds in the digital and technology sectors, thanks to its readily available workforce streaming-in from the gates of Cambridge University Year after Year. The incentives do not stop there. Cambridge University came up with a program aimed at equipping local business owners with the best business tips from world-class academics. While Cambridge is a small city, its business-friendly attributes say otherwise. No wonder it’s the City of perspiring dreams.

5. Bournemouth:

According to a recent report from Tech Nation, Bournemouth is currently experiencing the highest growth proportion of “Tech-related businesses” compared to any other location in the nation. The City’s tech industry is now worth £352 million, and it employs more than 15,000 individuals.
The fact Bournemouth is not too stuffy and is filled with creative minds makes it an ideal Location for startups. Even better the city features countless places to relax, in case you need to take a break from your routine activities.

Conclusion:

Location significantly impacts the success rate of a startup business. That said, entrepreneurs need to ensure that they are placing themselves in environments with business-friendly regulations and where customers can easily find them.

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

Why Millennial’s are better at saving than Investing

Why Millennial's are better at saving than Investing

Between October, 2007 and March, 2009, the S&P 500 lost 57 percent of its value. At the same time, the housing crisis destroyed home values in epic proportions, with many areas seeing real estate prices plunge by a higher percentage than the S&P. The financial carnage wiped out the savings of millions of Americans, cost millions of jobs, and forced the nation into a foreclosure crisis. 401(K) plans lost so much value that many people began calling them 101(K)s.

The oldest Millennial’s had just begun their working lives. Many promptly lost their jobs and money. If they had bought any real estate of started investing in retirement plans and the stock market, they bought at the top of the market and bore the full brunt of the crisis. Younger Millennial’s were still in school. They watched their parents lose their retirement savings, homes, and jobs. They watched college funds be devalued almost overnight.

Having experienced these dire times, Millennial’s have become a bit like depression-era people. Millennial’s have a preference for cash and lots of it. They may not be literally stuffing their mattresses with currency, but they are socking money away more than the previous three generations.

Cash is king:

In the Millennial realm, he or she who has cash reigns. Psychologically, this makes sense. If you came of age in a time of uncertainty, you are more likely to value security. Gen Xers and Boomers grew up in a time where buying a home was a certain path to long-term security. Jobs lasted decades or entire careers.

Investing made sense. Over the long term, everyone knew stocks gained far more than bonds or savings accounts. Movies like Wall Street promoted the idea that the big money was on Wall Street, and you had to play the market if you expected to get wealthy.

Despite their young age, 42 percent of Millennial’s invest conservatively, a higher portion than Gen Xers and Boomers, even though the older generations are much closer to retirement. This is a strong statement by Millennial’s. They don’t trust the investment markets.

Millennial’s are remarkably good at saving:

Millennial’s bend toward financial conservatism extends beyond investments. They also save more than Gen Xers or Boomers ever did. Millennial’s average an 11 percent savings rate. When their parents or grandparents were their age, the U.S. savings rate was often negative.

The discipline shown by Millennial’s demonstrates that they feel the need to remain financially independent. They can no longer rely on an employer to provide salary and benefits into the far-flung future. They also feel they need to make their own plans for retirement. Growing up at the time of the downfalls of Enron and Bernie Madoff, they feel a need for more self-reliant.

Student debt:

Many Millennial’s also carry heavy student loan burdens. Being deeply indebted at such a young age can certainly cause anyone to be more conservative with their money. No one wants to default on their loans or stress about coming up with the payments every month. If Millennial’s live too close to the edge, they are likely to be forced to defer loan payments or even default, which means those student loans may be hanging over them for a very long time.

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

How to Get Ahead in Business

How to Get Ahead in Business

While you may think that cutting prices and beating the competition are the best ways to get ahead, you may be surprised to learn about a far easier and more meaningful to help your business succeed. Zack Obront’s article, “How You Can Get Ahead in Business In Just 5 Minutes” in Entrepreneur, describes the simple but effective strategy for moving your company into the fast lane and feeling good about it. Obront talked with Adam Grant, author of Give and Take, about the benefits of doing five-minute favors for others that can reap rich rewards. The takeaway from both book and article is the principle of helping others in order to help your business. Here are some basic ways to do brief favors for others without bankrupting your personal schedule and free time.

Use your talents:

Share your specific skill set to help others who can benefit. For example, if you are a gifted speaker, offer to present the committee’s new proposal at the next staff meeting. If you are a technology whiz, spend a few minutes showing a new employee how to navigate a job-related app. Not only will your good deed be appreciated and remembered, but will also establish a reputation for stellar skills that set you apart at work.

Orchestrate your favors:

Avoid accommodating everyone who asks for favors. Look for ways to offer your services before someone can ask. Make the gesture on your terms, at your convenience, rather than allowing yourself to be distracted at work or interrupted at home due to someone’s pressing need for help. You might set apart a certain time-frame, such as 30 minutes right after lunch, or Friday afternoons as the week winds down. This can help to protect the rest of your schedule while providing slots for helping others.

Maintain a positive attitude:

Give of your time and talents wholeheartedly rather than complain or sulk about it. A negative attitude can render a good deed null and void and may even relegate you to social isolation. Remember, smiles are free, or share them generously. Everyone is struggling with something, so any help you can give will almost certainly be appreciated. Patience in assisting someone to work through a complicated process or in dealing with a difficult customer sets a good example and designates you as a positive role model.

Being the person who others trust and come to for help at times that do not interfere with your job duties or personal life will make both you and your colleagues feel good about your workplace relationship. Reach out to others the way you hope they will extend a helping hand to you if needed.

 

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

3 Career Growth Mistakes to Avoid in Business

3 Career Growth Mistakes to Avoid in Business
When it comes to career growth, most people want to do more than just make a bigger salary. While raises and additional benefits are certainly welcome, most people want to also experience the satisfaction of growing more competent at their job, being given more responsibility and possibly even taking on more of a managerial or leadership role. In today’s business world, tenure is not always the most important factor in determining who gets raises, promotions or more prestigious titles. If you want to get ahead in your career, here are three key mistakes to avoid making.

1. Asking for a promotion without having earned it:

Again, just being on or at a job for a certain period of time doesn’t automatically guarantee you a raise or a promotion. You have to actually prove you are a valuable member of the team and can successfully handle an increased level of responsibility. In many cases, the people who successfully negotiate promotions are often already doing far more than their job description entails. Having said that, however, it’s also important to ensure you aren’t taking on tasks or responsibilities that your supervisor or coworkers don’t actually want you taking on. A willingness to do more than is asked of you is important, but it’s just as important to make sure you are also “staying in your own lane.”

2. Not understanding or fitting in with the company culture:

In today’s business world, “soft skills” are turning out to be one of the most important factors in ultimate success. Among other things, these skills and qualities help you navigate the specific culture unique to every company, group or organization. Just simply doing your job well is not enough. It is also important to ensure that you are doing it in a way that fits in with the overall values, mission and vision of the company as well as in a way that fits in with the values, work style and ethics of your coworkers. Remember, your superiors can give you a title, but they cannot make you a leader. As the old saying goes “if you think you are leader but no one is following you, you’re just standing in a field.” Moving up the corporate ladder involves far more than just impressing your superiors, it also involves establishing yourself as a leader among your peers and subordinates as well. That requires a great deal of skill, tact and emotional intelligence.

3. Lack of networking:

Networking is not only important within your own company, but outside of it as well. Networking within your company can help you keep your “ear to the ground” so to speak so you know what’s coming and can read the writing on the wall. Networking within your company can help you build a solid framework of champions and supporters who can come to your aid when necessary. Networking outside of your company, however, can also give you a safety net when your internal supporters can’t save you. Networking outside of your company also helps you keep your options open and to determine if the company you are working for is still a good fit. While you certainly don’t want to bounce from company to company the minute something better comes along, there may come a time when your growth becomes limited where you are and the only way to move forward is to move elsewhere.
Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

6 Ways to Grow Your Business Fast

10 Ways to Grow Your Business Fast

Growing a business is not a feat that is easily achievable overnight, however, with a thorough understanding of your target audience it is possible to maximize your reach regardless of the market or industry you work in. Scaling your business with the right techniques allows you to outperform competition while rapidly generating revenue and new potential leads.

Research Competition:

Research the competition in your market to get a better understanding of top performers and the current most successful marketing campaigns in circulation. Research keywords along with trending phrases to learn more about how your target audience prefers to search for content, services, or products that are most relevant to your own (in order to better optimize your website for search engine results).

Create a Social Media Presence:

Create a social media presence for your business using top networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even Pinterest depending on the audience you want to reach. Use the same name across all platforms while remaining consistent with your company or brand’s official name.

Select the Right Branding:

Choose the right logo for your brand, ensuring it is relevant, unique, and eye-catching to your audience. Research colors that are most used in top brands within your industry while becoming familiar with various color schemes that work best with logos. Limit the number of colors you utilize within your logo, putting no more than three to use at one time.

Create a Sales Funnel:

Create sales funnels using newsletters along with social media marketing to help group various types of users into different funnels that fit your business model. Using sales models are ideal for both email and social media marketing, allowing you to hone in on your target demographic based on shopping preferences, location, gender, age, and even specific interests or hobbies. Create sales funnels for return customers along with users who currently have items in their shopping cart but have yet to complete the checkout process.

Social Media Marketing:

Use social media consistently when trying to grow any business or brand online. Create a posting schedule and utilize tools or services that allows you to schedule posts and updates ahead of time, preventing you from losing the interest of your followers. Share promotions, exclusive offers, and other incentives using social media to boost your website’s traffic and overall revenue.

Customer Loyalty Programs:

Create customer loyalty programs to boost referrals and the number of leads you are able to generate. Design loyalty programs that provide customers with the ability to earn points, cash back, or even freebies depending on your business model and the type of products or services you offer. Create contests and giveaways to attract more visitors to your website and to help with building a larger newsletter subscriber base.

Knowing how to grow your business fast with various tips and techniques allows you to save time while making the most out of resources made with online businesses in mind. Taking the time to develop your brand while reaching out to your audience using multiple techniques is a surefire way to make a mark in any industry you represent.

 

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.

Should You Pawn Stuff to Fund Your Business?

Should You Pawn Stuff to Fund Your Business?

Running a business comes with the standard costs and responsibilities. In addition, there are plenty of problems and expenses that you do not expect. It helps that you earn extra money, in addition to the profits, to manage your company successfully. One way to earn more is to pawn your stuff. Review the advantages and disadvantages of using this method to add more money to your business account.

Advantages:

Getting fast cash is the main benefit of working with a pawn shop. Present your item to the manager and receive a payment that same day. It’s less risky than a payday loan because there are no high interest rates or payment obligations.

Another advantage is that making money through pawn shops is simple. The process does not include any complicated paperwork or long waiting periods. Most things in good condition are eligible to be sold in pawn shops. Unwanted pianos, computers, books, clothing and hundreds more items are available in these stores.

Disadvantages:

The main disadvantage of using a pawnshop is that the owners may be scam artists. There are state and federal laws that regulate how owners conduct their shops. At the last, most owners are required to be licensed, but they have the freedom to charge their own prices.

If you are buying items, you must pay close attention to the prices. Selling items comes with the same amount of risk – the shop could offer less money than you deserve. For the most part, research the values of your used belongings before you offer to sell.

Finding Good Deals Is Possible:

When you do the research and act cautiously about who you sell to, it’s possible to get good deals through pawning. The process is similar to finding the right doctor to work with because you must use the same precautions. Compare offers from different shops instead of looking at only one. Read the customer reviews to see if the business has a good reputation in the area.

Find specialist shops if you plan to sell gold or jewelry. It’s important that you have an appraisal done with a jeweler to receive the best offer. There are online shops that are more convenient and allow you to work with a greater selection of businesses.

Finding a pawn shop is similar to finding any other business. Your main goal is to find a reputable one that is located in your area. You will earn some profits from pawning used items, but the price is determined by the current condition. You may get less than what the item’s worth, but if you need extra money quickly and easily, pawning is the ideal choice.

 

Mark Angelo is the Co-Founder of Yorkville Advisors.