Category: Be The Boss (page 1 of 2)

Starting your own business can be a challenge, especially if you used to work for local government or a large organisation. I give you tips on how you can Be The Boss and take control.

A Transcription Service Will Enhance Your Business

Prefer to listen instead of read? Listen to this page on SoundCloud

 

Have You Ever Thought About Using A Transcription Service?

A transcription service is probably something you never thought about when you started your business. But then again how many services have you started using since you started your business that you never thought you would? You have a website or Etsy site, you may use social media channels you have never used before, Drop Box and maybe even MailChimp.

So why would you add transcription service to that list?

Using A Transcription Service Is Part Of Being A Professional Business Owner

Let’s just think about this for a minute. If you think of someone dictating their work, who do you see? A solicitor, an accountant, a professor? Why do they do that? It is because time is money and they know that their time is better spent “doing what they do” than typing and other admin. They understand that by outsourcing tedious work they have a higher income.

If you feel nervous about doing dictation you can read my article

6 Steps To Excellent Dictation

Why Not Just Use Voice To Text Software?

Voice to text software is improving all the time and can be very helpful – if it can understand you! I’ve heard some funny stories about the software typing the VERY wrong thing! Whilst it does type the words you have spoken, what it can’t do is format it, add bold and italics, format a table or a form. The software doesn’t know when you are asking a question and put a question mark. It can’t guess a word for you either.

If you say, “You know, that Greek pudding that sounds like balaclava”, that is (hopefully) exactly what it will put. On the other hand, I will be able to guess you mean Baklava.

I can insert text directly into your WordPress website or into your Newsletter. Or I can return text as a Word document or a PDF. I listen to how you talk and add the right punctuation.

Your life will be so much easier. You talk and get a fully formatted document in return that you can share with pride.

Which File Types Can I Transcribe From?

The following is a list of known file types from which I can transcribe.

Audio FilesVideo Files
AAC3G2
ACT3G3
AIFTASF
AIFFAVI
AMRDivX
APEDV
AUFLV
CAFM4V
DCTMKV
DSPMOV
DSSMP4
DVFMPEG
DVSWMV
FLAC
OGG
M4A
MP2
MP3
MPC
MSV
QCP
RA/RM
SHN
SPX
VOC
VOX
WAV
WMA

If a file type of yours is not shown I’m happy to try it out or attempt to convert it to a type from which I will be able to transcribe.

How Much Does Transcription Cost?

1 Minute Recorded Speech
One Person Speaking
£1.10
Minimum £15

Save Yourself Time

Call Liz Bailey on 07974 701526 or email me at [email protected] I’m happy to chat about how I can help you out.

Enjoy School Holidays And Run Your Business From Home

True or False?

 

  1. The school holidays are coming up, you run your business from home and that makes you the perfect candidate for looking after the kids because you can do your work whilst they entertain themselves.False: That may be what other members of your family think but if you have tried to combine business and childcare before, you know how difficult it can be to juggle the two.
  2. It is possible to enjoy the school holidays when you run your business from home.True: With a little planning, it is possible to balance your business and the needs of a busy family life during the school holidays.

If you run your business from home, school holidays can be extremely challenging. There is a complete change of routine and you do not have the peace and quiet you are used to.

Anyone with children knows they seem to have a radar ability to know when you are concentrating on a critical point in your work. That is the point when, normally well-behaved children, suddenly start to argue. They argue over who’s turn it is to choose what to watch on TV, who isn’t being nice to who and, despite the fact you have bought them plenty of toys and gadgets and one each of most things, they all still seem to want to use or play with the same one at the same time.

What can you do to make school holidays something to enjoy, not endure?

I have written this article, not to give you tips on child-rearing, but to give practical ideas on ways you can successfully balance family and work during these weeks. After all, whilst it is always a tough call balancing time for business and time for family, think about your reasons for setting up on your own in the first place. Wasn’t it them that you had in mind?

Do what you can during term time

Do you have to make regular blog posts or newsletters? Try to do them during term time. If you are doing one a week can you do 2 or more a week and have them to one side so that during the holidays that is one less job to do. Your blogs and newsletters can be published by schedule during the holidays.

Even if you haven’t got your blogs and newsletters fully edited during term-time, do as much as you possibly can so that with just a few tweaks you can publish them during the holidays.

Schedule your social media

Do you use a scheduling app for your Social Media posts such as HootSuite Free, Buffer, Social Oomph or Quuu? If you don’t, now might be the time to look at these apps.

If you are using these regularly look at whether it is worth upgrading for the duration of the holidays. If the upgrade provides something that will make your life easier upgrade for the period of the holidays and schedule as much as you can before the holidays start. You can always downgrade again in September.

Schedule your holiday

You probably have got a couple of weeks vacation scheduled during the holidays, but if not, consider scheduling one day off a week or even a staycation to spend with the family. Most sole traders do this from time to time. Some business people will make a post on social media to let their customers know they are going to be away and give the date they will return.

If you are running your business from your home you may not want to broadcast to the world that you are going to be away. In that case, you might want to let your most important clients know. They understand they will still be able to reach you if they need to. The chances are some of your contacts will be taking some time off too.

Schedule your Day

It is unlikely you are going to have a day to yourself where you can just get on with your work. Instead, adjust your mindset. Decide how the day is going to work best for you in your circumstances.

If your kids are a bit older and like a lie in, could you get up early and do a little bit of extra work before they get up?

If your other half works during the day but is at home during the evenings could you, for the duration of the holidays, do your work during the evenings.

Yes, both options require sacrifices of your personal time, but in the circumstances isn’t it worth it to make things work for you and your family?

If you do have to spend some of your day working whilst the kids are amusing themselves set time limits. Every half hour or so leave your workspace and let them see your face so they know that you are still keeping an eye on them.

Schedule business trips and meetings

If you need to travel on business consider whether the whole family can take a day out. Check before hand to see if there is an attraction in the locality your family would like to visit. Maybe you could make a day out of it, they could go to the attraction, you could do your meeting and meet up with them later.

Outsource

If you don’t do this already, consider outsourcing.  The beauty of outsourcing is that it is not something you have to do all year round. If you do outsource for the duration of the holidays you can spend the precious time saved with your family – in a way having your cake and eating it.

Think about the businesses that you know or use already and what they can do for you to make your life easier for the next few weeks.

Giving matters your full attention

It is often said that whatever you do, give it your full attention. This advice is going to be especially difficult to apply during the holidays. Be aware that it can be a problem and remember giving full attention for just 10 or 15 minutes at a time to either your family or your business is going to be more effective than trying to balance the two for longer periods of time.

After the holidays

Give yourself a half day or day off. This may sound counter intuitive but it will give you the mental break you need to refresh your thoughts and dive back in.

I provide typing services and admin support. If you have reports, emails, blogs and newsletters to prepare before or during the holidays you can dictate these in a quarter of the time it would take you to type. Also if you need any additional admin support during that time, please do get in touch with me on 07974 701526 or email [email protected] Let’s chat about how I can help your business.

Whether you choose to use my services or not I hope you find these suggestions useful and have fantastic holidays with your family.

Admin Support, Wrexham

FREEDOM TO GET LOST IN THE WORK YOU LOVE

Photos Courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

How To Outsource Successfully

Your business is growing and it’s all because of you. Even if you have done everything entirely yourself so far you really do need to consider outsourcing. Some, however, find this difficult. Why is this and how can you outsource successfully?

What is outsourcing?

First of all, let us look at the definition of outsourcing.

To contract work out. To obtain goods or services from an outside service.

By those standards you already are outsourcing. Did you build your computer yourself (ok so maybe you did clever clogs but did you mine the copper for the wiring?) Did you build your own desk and chair? No, you outsourced to obtain these products. We all outsource in our personal life too, what about haircuts? meals out? car repairs? these are all services that we successfully outsource.

Why should you outsource?

If you are quite a clever person and skilled not only at your job but other things too, you might feel that you are the best person for each job in your business. You probably are, but the saying is “You can do anything, but not everything”. What will happen if you continue to try doing everything yourself now your business is getting so busy?

Your business will suffer, you might get burnout, your family life might suffer, your health might deteriorate. And think too of why you decided to start up your own business in the first place. Wasn’t it just to avoid exactly those things?

Another reason some do not like outsourcing is they feel they have been let down before. This may be the case, but don’t let that put you off, try these tactics and have another go.

Choose the right company or person

You need to choose the right company or person for the job. The chances are the first place you are going to look is Google, but just because a company comes at the top of that list does not mean they are the best person for the job.  It does mean they have a good SEO expert though.

Ask around. If you know people in similar businesses to yours, ask who they use. They will be flattered that you asked.

Try looking at Social Media. You are most likely making full use of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and probably some others. Do a search, look through your current followers or look closer at people you currently chat to regularly. Can you see someone there who might be able to help or point you in the right direction? Let’s face it, it would be nice to find a company or person who you know, like and trust and this is a good place to find them.

Start with smaller tasks

Try out the company or person with small tasks first and evaluate their performance. Was the job done on time? Did they communicate well? If a price was given did they stick to it? Can you see ways that they can help you more as your business grows? You might want to try out more than one company or person for these smaller tasks to see how they compare.

Give clear instructions

Be clear in your instructions. Both you and the company or person should know what is expected including how often progress reports are to be made, a timeline/deadline and agreed cost. Put these in writing if only briefly.

There also needs to be an understanding of how much can be left to the discretion of the company or person doing the job or any guidelines that you want them to work within.

Information

Be sure to provide all information needed, this will save time and money in the long run and means you will not be receiving messages asking for this. Although it may be difficult to share some information, the more you can communicate to the designated company or person, the better job they can do.

Communicate with others

Take a moment to consider whether you may need to make known to other businesses or people the arrangements that you have made.

Do not micro-manage

Once you have outsourced the task do not try to micro-manage it. No two people do the same job exactly the same way. It is the results that matter. If you have a technique that you think can speed up the process be sure to offer some advice but if the company or person is achieving the expected results do not insist they take it.

Review performance

Once the job is completed review the work done. Even when you have been outsourcing to the same company or person for some time always make random checks. This will help you stay in control and keep standards up.

Relax and enjoy the benefits of outsourcing

Once you have chosen a company or business you will find you have more time for your family, the work you enjoy and actually get paid for and you will be able to expand your business. You may even have a little extra time to enjoy other activities or sports that you have temporarily put on hold.

Benefit too from looking at the company or person you have outsourced to. They have may use different processes, systems or programmes to achieve the same results as you. Do not see this as a fault, look to see if you can learn anything from them that could help your business.

How I can help

If you are reading this, the chances are you may be thinking of outsourcing or will be doing so at some point in the future. I provide a typing service for help with blogs, newsletters, emails and social media posts, all the things essential for marketing your business. By dictating these on your smartphone voice recorder you can get that work done in a quarter of the time, leaving you more time for the work you actually get paid for. If you work alone it is an extra person “in your corner” too.

Let’s chat on 07974 701526 or email [email protected] to see how I can help your business.

Help with outsourcing

FREEDOM TO GET LOST IN THE WORK YOU LOVE

 

Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

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