Holiday Shopping is Coming!

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Black Friday? That sounds scary. Millions brave the crowds the Friday after Thanksgiving to start their Christmas shopping looking for big savings. It turns out it isn’t an official US holiday but if you’re not in retail you probably have the day off. If you are in retail I wish you all the serenity and coffee you need. I had wondered where such a dark name came from, it sounds so ominous to me! But in reality it just comes from accounting, losses were recorded in red ink while black ink represented a profit. Electronics, toys, clothing, home furnishing, just about anything you can think of will have big discounts on Black Friday.

More recently the day after Black Friday is getting some hype, Small Business Saturday! Starting in 2010 this day promotes supporting small and local businesses. Just a year later the day became official in 2011. By 2014 American Express had become a huge supporter of this day and do free ads for local businesses. Local businesses today are being very supported on this day and it looks like that support will only continue to grow!

With such a crazy shopping weekend after Thanksgiving my personal favorite is Cyber Monday.  That is where you’ll find me! Starting back in 2005 this seems like a great way to avoid the traffic, crowds, cold, and all the hassle for items that may be out of stock by the time you get to them, eek. A lot of Cyber Monday shopping can actually begin on Sunday so you don’t even have to miss a beat if you’re going to be shopping all three of these events next weekend!

 

Shopping Image Source: http://www.swire-mt.com/

Submitted by Syd Miles

adult-Syd

Lessons From My Grandfather

“Relationships are everything.” My grandfather has told me this thousands of times, ever since I first understood what it meant to be personable. When it comes to doing business, my grandfather has bestowed in me valuable lessons about how two people should conduct themselves and find success in what they are trying to achieve. Whether it is a formal meeting behind a desk, or a lunch meeting on a Friday, the way you present and handle yourself is everything. My grandfather, who is now in his 90’s spent his whole life since he was 16 doing business with others and building great relationships on top of it.

Being 22 & fresh out of college, there is nothing I appreciate more than wisdom from a man who has seen life from not only a different generation's perspective, but also from a different world. He was born and raised in Vienna, Austria until he and his family immigrated the United States - but not before living through the Nazi invasion. While his family was not Jewish by religion, they were by blood, which prevented my grandfather from ever graduating from high school. Starting at age 15, he worked at a service station until one day the owner told him that he was taking a job elsewhere & gave my grandfather full responsibility for operating the station. Even at such a young age, my grandfather took over the service station, and managed it until he came over to the United States in 1939, when he began working at a lamp factory in Cleveland.

This was only the next opportunity for my grandfather, and while working at the factory in his new land, he began to learn English - and even found love. Only two weeks later, fate led him to my grandmother. A short time after that, he enlisted in the U.S. army and became a member of a mysterious, elite team that was so secretive in its mission, it was known only as PO Box 1142. My grandfather's team was responsible for listening in on conversations of German Prisoners of War who were stationed there. No one else knew what PO Box 1142 did - it was all highly confidential because the work was very important to the war effort.

After leaving the army, my grandfather worked for the Motch & Merryweather Machinery Company and then left to join Pesco Products, a division of Borg Warner Corporation as a Senior Buyer. Ultimately, Picker X Ray asked him to provide non-magnetic stainless steel tools for the MRI. He and a German business acquaintance went into business together and became the sole importers of such products; 2 years later, his partner developed the only titanium tool line available, and they successfully sold that product for 15 years.

My grandfather’s valuable knowledge and wisdom that he shares with me to this day helps me strive for great relationships with everyone that I do business with now and in the future. I owe much of my personal and professional demeanor to my grandparents and one day I will be able to pass that along to my own children. I personally believe you cannot do good business without showing others your own commitment to and strong belief in what you are selling. Even today my grandfather takes me with him when he meets with different people, just to prove how right his statement is. Relationships in business may start with a simple handshake but end with a partnership for years to come.

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Me & my grandfather at my recent college graduation.


Contributed by Ethan Tanney. All photos are the author's own & may not be reproduced without permission.
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Teamwork Gets It Done!

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When I started working at RSVP at 2012, we only offered one program - our Luxury Card Pack - and only mailed in 10 zones throughout Ohio & Kentucky. At that time, I was the only graphic designer and I easily kept myself organized with just pen and paper: writing out to-do lists, sketching ideas, and making notes for myself. In 2013, RSVP quickly started growing, adding several new programs to create an entire marketing suite, as well as acquiring 2 new zones in Indianapolis - bringing our total coverage to 12 zones in 3 states. Before I knew it, I was swamped! Two things immediately became clear:

  1. I realized that we needed to hire a second designer, not only to help manage the workload these exciting changes brought about, but also to enable RSVP to continue to grow.
  2. I also realized that my-pen-and-paper method of organization & project management wasn't going to cut it any more!

In December 2014, we hired a 2nd graphic designer, and though the workload remained demanding & hectic, I knew we could manage it if we worked together & developed a coherent strategy.

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So how do we do it?

  1. We set clear goals and tasks: Each of our programs has a set-in-stone deadline, so staying on task & on track is essential! We make this happen by using project management software to schedule and manage tasks. This helps us work as a team & take big projects in small chunks - it can be overwhelming to see something like 36 mailings due in a single month! But by breaking it down bit by bit. we find it's much less stressful and daunting. We each excel at different aspects of design, too, so the software allows us to collaborate - and to come with the best solution for each client.Image3
  2. We expect the unexpected: It's inevitable that something goes wrong - a computer crashes, or a client changes the artwork, or someone gets sick. No matter how much pre-planning we do, we know that something always comes up. The key is to stay calm & cope with whatever the situation may be.  We stay flexible by getting work done early & doing our best to anticipate possible speed bumps. Image4
  3. We measure our successes and celebrate our victories: When you manage a project for efficiency, accuracy, and speed, it’s not just about managing the details and flow of the project; it’s also about managing the details of the details. Every morning, we come with a clear plan of action, enumerating what needs to be done that day, how we're going to get it done, and we make sure to check off each task along the way. At the end of the day, we evaluate what we have accomplished, and then plan accordingly for the next day. Image5

We know that RSVP's success is our success & vice-versa, so we're excited to continue growing & know that we will be able to manage our projects as long as we stay focused & committed to excellence. We won't stop until we reach the top!Image6


Contributed by Caitlin Tuohy. All images are the author's own & may not be republished without express written permission.

Caitlin

 

Believe in Your Sell!

All throughout college I knew that I would want to be in sales, but a big question kept popping up: What do I want to sell?

I learned about sales through both my coursework and personal experiences as well, which led me to believe that sales can be easy. People are actually selling every day - even those who aren't working in a typical “sales" position. Remember the time you went to a restaurant & couldn't make a decision on what to order? Maybe you asked the server for a recommendation, and she gushed about a particular dish they serve, or insisted you try the chef's special. That's selling! They are persuading you to purchase a specific dish - and you will most likely try what she recommends because it's clear that she believes that item is the best on the menu.

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"Aren't you glad you listened to me? Of course you are. I'm awesome."

Imagine, on the other hand, your server shrugs & says, "Well, I guess the chef's special is pretty good," or gives some other lukewarm non-answer devoid of excitement or fervor. You probably wouldn’t be as inclined to trust her recommendation. She doesn't seem to think that dish is good - does she like anything the restaurant serves? Maybe you should have gone somewhere else for dinner...

I knew that I didn't want to be like the 2nd server, who seems unsure of the menu & doesn't appear to believe in what she is selling. I knew that I wouldn't be happy in sales unless I could sell something I believe in - something that gets me excited to sell. Studies constantly show that happy employees are more productive employees, and productivity is everything in sales, so this requirement seemed obvious and essential. It would be the best way for me to be productive & happy while successfully serving my clients. Not to mention, confidence is a strong indicator of whether or not someone succeed in sales, and I knew I couldn't be confident were I to settle for selling something I didn't believe in. I couldn't even fathom the idea morally. I wouldn’t want to sell a product or service to clients that I wouldn't feel comfortable buying myself - they won't be happy because I've ultimately wasted their time and money, not to mention betrayed the trust they placed in me. At the end of the day, I want to feel good about myself and my work.

Although I had no intentions of selling advertising, I am very fortunate to have found RSVP. Even though I am new and still learning new things, I can honestly say that RSVP gets me excited to sell, and I enjoy telling people about our company and what we do to help small businesses. I admittedly even get a little frustrated when a prospect doesn't want to listen or learn about what RSVP can offer  - but that is just because I know that I can provide him or her with a vehicle to increase revenue and generate solid, qualified business for their company. I sincerely want to help these business owners, and I am certain that the best way for me to do so is through helping them advertise with RSVP. I am confident in our service and excited to continue my journey here - always learning & growing - and I want to pass this excitement on to prospects (and eventually, clients) as I invite them to join RSVP's publications & take their businesses to the next level!


Contributed by Travis Haren.
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Free Your Time

Every day, I feel blessed to meet inspiring business owners through my work at RSVP. Each of them started their business with some passion, end goal or dream in mind. Each story shares that uniquely American can-do spirit & independence. I hear things like:

  • "I was tired of the corporate rat race."
  • "Why work for someone else when I can work for myself?"
  • "I want to create a legacy."

But their reasons run even deeper than that. At the heart of their decision to strike out on their own is the desire for a sense of control over their lives and futures. They year for independence, yet they find themselves working harder, burning the candle at both ends, no end to the workday, perpetually tethered to the business they created & nurtured. Instead of resting easy they lay awake thinking about hiring new employees or tackling the next big project, answering emails in the wee hours of the morning or at their kid's soccer practice.

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"OK, we do monkey bars until 3:15, then the slide from 3:30-3:40, and that should give us enough time to have juice & crackers before our 4:00 meeting with Mom regarding your most recent finger-painting performance."

That original laser-focused dream that started it all becomes a little cloudy in the weary mind of that business owner. Now she may be totally in charge of her own destiny now, but she's somehow a little more out of control. And yet she still has the same spark of passion and energy that inspires her to get up every day and do it all again, living the madness to create her dream for herself. Despite the unique challenges and struggles that come along with being an entrepreneur, most are proud and wouldn't trade the freedom that comes along with it for the world.

Our conversations often turn to the real reason they're working so hard: the freedom to do what they want with their downtime. The desire to be able to take a vacation without requesting time off from someone else, relying on another person's approval. Common escapes include foreign travels, a beach, a lake, camping. Living a life of pleasure & relaxation in a place of peace & serenity. A place to reboot & recharge. I have to smile when I hear that their escapes are often jam-packed with activity, from adventure sports, boating, or other adrenaline-pumping, white-knuckle, edge-of-the-seat activity.  It isn't surprising that the same business owners who pour their passion into creating & sustaining a business during working hours tend to approach their downtime with the same fervor.

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For example, this is how I relax.

But it takes time, dedication, and delegation - and delegation seems to be the hardest part! For business owners whose ventures are in their infancy or growing years, these escapes must be postponed. Sometimes it may be for personal reasons - "We're waiting until the kids are a little older before we buy a cabin on the lake." - but often it's for professional reasons. They have to wait until such-and-such employee is able to handle the workload - or even have to wait until their business grows enough to hire employees! Other business owners have grown their company & begun to hand the reins over to capable individuals. These owners are enjoying their time, living in the moment...and looking back, they wish they would've done it sooner.  They wish they would've spent more time with their children and escaped from the daily grind even if that grind is one they created for themselves. If you're nervous about delegating business responsibilities to others so that you can enjoy the life you've created for yourself, let Entrepreneur magazine help you out with their 4-step guide!

In his book The 4-Hour Workweek, author Tim Ferriss recommends to readers to not to work until retirement, but rather to live your retirement a little each week. Build those little escapes into your life so you can enjoy them now, rather than waiting for some undetermined future date - when you hire more people, open another location, add another service. I know it's hard to believe, but work can wait.  What may seems like an urgent problem requiring your attention RIGHT NOW, TODAY may simply work itself out in the hands of capable & trusted employees if only you would make like Elsa & let it go.

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And now the song is in your head. No need to thank us.

So as my family & I pack up and head to the lake this Fourth of July season, I'll be counting my blessings: not just my own personal or professional success, but also our nation's independence, and our country's long history of encouraging men & women to make their own way by doing things their own way, freeing us to create the life of our dreams. I like to think that the fantastic fireworks displays with all their awe-inspiring moments of "Ooh!"s and "Ahh!"s are symbolic of these blessings, and a reminder to keep your head up, dream big, be grateful, and be present.

I hope these business owners see it the same way, and that they continue to work to fulfill their dreams, but remember to get away and savor the here & now.


Contributed by Heather Craaybeek.
Heather

 

 

 


Image sources: 1, 2 and 3. Frozen copyright Disney 2013.

 

 

Social Self-Destruction

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Don't let this happen to your business!

For the last week, I have been watching a small business self-destruct via Facebook. It hasn’t been pretty and it was totally preventable if the business owner truly understood the power of social media.

I am part of a Facebook group for a vendor I use for my own sewing hobby/ business. The people in the group are not only very active in that particular group, but also in many other related groups. Over the last month, customers have noticed a sudden drop in overall quality of the vendor’s product. Naturally, these customers have reached out to the company’s customer service – but unfortunately, they have gotten less than satisfactory responses. Some customers have even been on the receiving end of responses that are accusatory in nature, with the company blaming their customers!

Customers are understandably upset & are now taking their concerns to the business’ Facebook page, which is common in the “social age.” This is where things are getting ugly. Instead of addressing negative comments & customer complaints, the company deletes them. The company owner has started sending rude Facebook messages to complaining customers, telling them not to post concerns or negative comments to the Facebook page, and going so far as to bring up comments the customers made in other groups.

Yes. The owner is “e-stalking” the customers & monitoring their activity on pages that are NOT the owner’s business page!

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DANGER! DANGER! BAD IDEA!

Further, customers are being banned from the group for “bullying” because they dare to post dissenting opinions. While all of this is playing out, these customers are talking in other groups and even posting screen shots of the messages they received from the business owner. The negativity is getting around and lots of people are talking…which also means that lots of customers are choosing not to shop there anymore. This includes people who have been customers for years and who have spent thousands of dollars with this company – and all of them are now taking their business elsewhere.

This sort of negative attention and resulting customer exodus will certainly have a long-term impact on this vendor’s business. As Maya Angelou famously said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel” – and you can probably imagine that being insulted by the owner of a company that your dollars helped succeed makes someone feel pretty terrible for a long, long time. In fact, research shows that 39% of consumers will continue to avoid vendors two or more years after a bad experience.

What’s more, a handful of bad customer service experiences can have far-reaching effects - 54% of consumers have shared bad experiences with more than five people. Websites like Yelp! have not only made sharing poor experiences easier, but they’ve also broadened the audience for these tales. This means that even consumers who have not personally been affected by a company’s bad business manners may steer clear of it anyway – as much as 88% of consumers have been influenced by an online customer service review when making a buying decision.

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And this doesn't even include all of the review sites where your business may be listed!

The owner of the company I’ve been watching implode on Facebook could have handled it so much better simply by being transparent over social media. Addressing customer concerns in real time and in a public space makes them feel appreciated & important, and other customers who witness the exchange can rest assured that they will also be heard if they have a problem. Peter Roesler at Inc. offers some good advice:

“A key tenet of good PR is that whenever a company makes a mistake, they need to make an honest effort to acknowledge the problem, apologize and ameliorate the situation. Trying to hide or ignore a problem will only make the effects worse in the long run. This is especially true with complaints on social media networks. Ignoring, deleting comments from, or banning consumers with a legitimate complaint only makes them angrier and they are likely to attack the social media page, or the brand itself, in other ways. For example, they may use a friend's profile to continue posting negative comments, ad infinitum. They may also take their angry comments to a review site or list the business with a scam site.”

The message here is clear: if a business doesn’t properly manage its social media and proceeds to ignore the concerns of customers, then it is just digging its own grave.

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Contributed by Jodie Hook
Jodie

 

 

 

 


Image sources: 1, 2, 3 & 4

 

This Week in Advertising: Feb. 15 – Feb. 21

Welcome back to RSVP’s This Week in Advertising feature! This regular series includes the news tidbits from the advertising world that interested, excited, or amused us this week. We’re glad you’ve joined us – let’s see what happened This Week in Advertising:


  • Let's kick off with a quick lesson in what NOT to do when your company is on the receiving end of some backlash: Seasalt & Co., a company specializing in Photoshop tools, posted a bizarre ad featuring an ominous-looking tree with an even more sinister noose dangling from one of the branches, ostensibly to promote their latest line of graphic design tools...somehow. When the responses they received were less than flattering, the company began threatening legal action against those who complained, then eventually deleted their social media accounts, only to resurface later, with their Facebook page scrubbed clean of the ad, the responses to the ad, and any reference to the ad. A halfhearted and confusing apology (predictably) soon followed, and we suspect the clean-up will continue in coming months. The moral of the story? Think before you advertise, and take criticisms to heart - preferably without unnecessary legal threats.
  • At the other end of the tact spectrum, online retailer ModCloth is known not only for selling high-quality clothes in kitschy cuts & prints at affordable prices, but also for promoting realism & body diversity in their advertising - they were the first company to join a pledge against using Photoshop on their advertisements to create "unattainable body images," and the company frequently uses images of everyday customers wearing their clothes in catalogs. They continue this tradition with their 2015 swimwear campaign, which features actual ModCloth employees instead of models. The ads include women of various heights & shapes, and have generated quite the social media buzz on Facebook, Twitter & Tumblr.
  • ModCloth may not care much for Photoshop, but millions of graphic designers the world over do, and use the program to design & create the eye-catching ads we see in our daily lives. Adobe is celebrating its iconic design program's 25th anniversary with a vibrant 60-second ad set to Aerosmith's "Dream On", which will air during the Oscar Awards this Sunday evening.
  • Oh, did we mention the Oscars are on this Sunday? You can prepare for the big night by watching the stirring, emotional ads the Academy developed to promote Sunday's show - just have some tissues ready.
  • Oscar-night ad spots are as coveted as those nestled in between plays on the Super Bowl, and American Express alone will be airing four ads, each costing the credit card company around $2 million dollars. These commercials will feature various celebrities - who are also AmEx clients - talking about their rises to fame & overcoming the obstacles that stood in the way of their dreams...dreams that are now worth $2 million dollars.
  • We know this isn't *technically* advertising-related, but we can't help but be fans of Mad Men, the hit AMC show that has transfixed millions over its seven-season run. The show, set in the dog-eat-dog world of 1960s advertising firms, begins its final season on April 5th, and the first trailer indicates that the swinging-sixties have given away to a very sideburn-ed & plaid seventies. Catch the spot here, and be sure to tune in to AMC on April 5th - it's certain to be memorable.

    Contributed by the RSVP Staff
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Remote Control: Is the Remote Office the Workplace of Tomorrow?

RSVP is a local business & proud of it. Our office headquarters has been located in Centerville, Ohio for all of our 15 years of business, and our employees are both familiar with & active in the communities they serve in Cleveland, Akron, Columbus, Dayton, Cincinnati, Louisville, Lexington, and most recently, Indianapolis. We take pride in being small & local because we believe it helps us better understand our clients' needs & struggles. When you call our office in Centerville, I answer the phone - Hi, my name is Renee - and I help you get in touch with the person in our office who can best assist you. I also write & distribute the minutes for our weekly staff meetings, maintain client records, and manage our calendars and data gathering systems, in addition to generally trying to keep everyone else sane in the face of constantly looming deadlines.

That's not terribly unusual for an administrative assistant. What is unusual is that I'm doing all of these things from my home office in Seattle, Washington - and probably with one of my cats in my lap.

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The view from my "office" window.

I haven't always worked from a home office. From 2011-2013, I worked in our Centerville office, and as far as I was concerned, I was going to keep working in that office until they pried my cold fingertips from my keyboard. Life, of course, had different plans for me: in August 2013, just as I hit the big 3-0, my boyfriend - a talented mobile app developer - was offered an incredible opportunity to work for a large tech company headquartered in Seattle!  One month later, we sold my car, loaded our belongings into his Honda Civic, and drove across the country to start a new life in an unfamiliar city.

That's how I became one of the millions of people who work remotely. Remote employees usually work from home, but sometimes they're in coffee shops, airport lounges, and even planes themselves! The office as we used to know it has become less ubiquitous as businesses work to accommodate & respect their employees' personal lives. According to Gallup's State of the American Workplace, 39% of companies now allow employees to work remotely. A remote office is now less of an anomaly & more of an expectation, and this rings true even for small, local businesses, like RSVP. In fact, president & publisher of RSVP, Tony Sucato, recently said, "The goal is for all of us to eventually be able to work remotely."

Not everyone thinks that is something to strive for in the business world, and some companies are actively working to curtail the remote trend. In 2013, Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer mandated that employees work from a Yahoo! office. Explaining this decision, Yahoo! Human Resources director Jackie Reeses said, "Being a Yahoo isn’t just about your day-to-day job, it is about the interactions and experiences that are only possible in our offices." This, admittedly, hits home for me. I certainly miss my co-workers & the jokes we shared, or lunch runs we would make to grab mid-day bulgogi at Kabuki (P.S. if you live in Dayton or Columbus, go there on my behalf! I miss their food). Less tangible than lunch dates & inside jokes, though, are the small nuances you pick up on after sharing an office with people for years and years. When I worked in the office, I could tell if Jodie had a sick child at home, or if Heather was talking loudly because she had too many cups of coffee. Now, I am no longer privy to these details, and I miss out on the minutia. Yahoo's decision was, at least in part, motivated by a desire to re-establish an office environment & encourage the sort of daily interactions that I miss now.

Beyond employee relationships, Yahoo's Mayer was also concerned about out-of-office employees' ability to be productive and ignore the many distractions working remotely may present. Writing for Forbes, David Sturt & Todd Nordstrom note that, "[p]ets, children, television, and the refrigerator can all be distractions for people who work from home," and that remote workers who travel frequently face additional challenges, including noise, chatty co-commuters, and unpredictable work conditions. Still, I am not convinced that the distractions I now confront in my home office are any different from those I had in the RSVP office. Well, OK, granted, this wasn't likely to happen in the RSVP office:

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Captain Morgan, my CFO (Chief Feline Officer)

But something like this?

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Ongoing construction outside our apartment building in Seattle.

Now that type of distraction is totally possible. In fact, I remember when we had the roof replaced at RSVP and had to brush plaster off our desks because the work was so intense above us. We couldn't even use the office phones because of the noise! How is that in-office distraction worse than, say, having a cat hop up on your desk for a quick nuzzle at the home office? I'm honestly not convinced that it is. Additionally, studies have often shown that employees who work from a home office are more dedicated and productive, logging an average of 4 extra hours of work per week & cranking their productivity up by as much as 13%. Remote office employees even report being more engaged in their work than their in-office counterparts.

Still, remote work is not for everyone - businesses & employees alike. Large companies like Yahoo!, whose bloated infrastructure hindered growth in recent years, need to maintain control over many facets & departments chock full of employees, and an easy way to do that is to encourage in-office work. Further, some people are simply not cut out for remote work; the distractions prove too many, or they simply use the office to create a physical separation between their home lives & their professional lives. Sturt & Nordstrom encourage those considering remote work to do it for the right reasons, and believe it comes down to personal preference. According to them, "it may soon be possible that everyone can choose the work environment that suits them the best." That is, remote office workers can work remotely, in-office employees can stay in the office, and businesses can reap the benefits that come from a happy employee base.

Even though I miss the camaraderie of the office & the convenience of being physically close to our central location, I am glad I have the opportunity to work from home. Working from home allows me to keep a job I enjoy with people I like at a company dedicated to excellence - and those factors are important enough to me that I'm willing to work across space & time (thousands of miles & a 3-hour time difference).

Now if you'll excuse me, Hemingway needs to see me for my annual purr-formance review.

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"We really need to focus on catching the red dot this quarter."


Contributed by Renee Pugh.

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All images are the author's own. Unauthorized usage without proper credit is prohibited.

Just Stop.

I'm always trying to bring unusual content to a different audience - a non-art-world audience.Jenny Holzer.

I decided to write this blogpost on another one of my favorite female artists, Jenny Holzer.  Advertising is about making the viewer stop. Stop at that one postcard, or stop at that one page in the magazine. I believe that Jenny’s work makes people stop.

I first learned about Holzer’s work in an Art History class I took at UD. What I found fascinating about Jenny’s work was her meaningful phrases and the way that she displays them. Holzer is mostly known for her large-scale public displays that include billboard advertisements, projections on buildings and other architectural structures, as well as illuminated electronic displays. From big to small, Holzer’s work has also been shown on monuments, small posters and T-Shirts. Wikipedia says, “Her main concern is to enlighten, bringing into light something thought in silence and meant to remain hidden.”

Holzer was born in Gallipolis, Ohio and attended Duke University, the University of Chicago and Ohio University where she completed a Bachelors of Fine Arts Degree. She moved to New York City in 1976. In Manhattan, Holzer participated in an independent study at the Whitney Museum and that is where she first started working with language, installation and public art. Some of her contemporaries include Barbara Kruger, Cindy Sherman, Sarah Charlesworth, and Louise Lawler.

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Holzer has done many series, but two in particular made me stop. She has a series called“For the Capitol” that she completed in 2007. Projected on the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C, this piece was made specifically for nighttime projection using quotes from John F. Kennedy and Theodore Roosevelt.

I also appreciated her project from 2006 titled “For 7 World Trade” which is one of her permanent LED light installations. It hangs in the lobby of the 7 World Trade Center in New York City. The WTC’s website mentions Holzer’s piece saying, “Holzer, a conceptual artist, created an animated-text installation of prose and poetry that scrolls across a glowing 65-foot-wide, 14-foot-high glass wall behind the reception desk. The work features pieces written by numerous authors - from Elizabeth Bishop and Allen Ginsberg to Langston Hughes and Walt Whitman - whose work evokes the history and spirit of New York City.”

That's the test of street art - to see if anybody stops. People would cross out ones they didn't like and would star others. I liked that people would engage with them.-Jenny Holzer

Jenny Holzer is currently living upstate New York with her husband and daughter. Her art has been shown all over the world and has won many awards. Her work is controversial but I also think it has a way of pulling people in and enticing them. Her displays are in your face and make you think. I find that is needed in good advertising whether it is advertising for businesses or advertising your own thoughts and ideas. If you enjoy Jenny Holzer’s work I also recommend checking out the other artists I mentioned earlier.

Contributed by Crista Kling.

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For all the pictures and information in this blog, please utilize the sources below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jenny_Holzer

http://www.pbs.org/art21/artists/jenny-holzer

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/09/12/AR2007091202441.html

http://www.streetscenesdc.com/Projections.html

http://www.wtc.com/about/office-tower-7/office-tower-7-design

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/j/jenny_holzer_2.html

http://projects.jennyholzer.com/projections/san-diego-2007/gallery#4

http://www.aiany.org/eOCULUS/2006/2006-04-18.html

http://ny.curbed.com/places/7-wtc

http://www.pbs.org/art21/images/jenny-holzer/for-7-world-trade-2006

http://www.omatic.com/public_art/holzer.htmlhttp://projects.jennyholzer.com/http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2010/mar/14/jenny-holzer-baltic-review-cumming

 

Quick History of the Cell Phone

You know, if you think about it, cell phones haven’t really been around that long. The first cell phone approved for commercial use was developed by Mr. Martin Cooper in 1983 – a mere 31 years ago.

The phone cost $9,000 in today’s dollars (Interestingly this is not even the most expensive cell phone ever – Vertu sells luxury phones today from ($6,000-$12,000). Even more interesting, the first call was made to the son of Alexander Graham Bell. I wish I could have been there for that!

The cell phone has completely changed the entire world. It’s changed how we talk, how we log and track our lives, and also how we do business. No longer are we tied to emailing each other (which was invented in 1971 by the way) or making calls from the office. Now we are accessible to anyone 24/7.

Our phones have evolved from the two pound Motorola DynaTAC down to the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini which is a whopping 107g, or roughly the same weight as a fork or a teaspoon.

 

I would argue it’s one of the most diverse business tools available to us, with a plethora of apps and features to remind us we have a meeting, tell us how to get there, and then remind you to make that follow up call. If you have a need, there is an app for that.

For a list of the top ten business apps, go here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/amitchowdhry/2013/09/16/best-business-apps-to-download/

My personal favorite from this list include Square, where you can turn your cell phone into a credit card swiping machine, and Evernote, which is like a notebook for your cell phone. You can make multiple notebooks with various tabs to keep notes, clip sections from website, and much more.

The Square and it's app. Turns your cell phone into a credit card processor (for a small fee of course).

The Square and its app. Turns your cell phone into a credit card processor (for a small fee of course).

Your options are truly limitless with the technology that is rapidly developing. I am excited to see what the future holds for cell phones and other business technologies!

Contributed by Ashley Hudson.

Ashley

 

 

 

 

 

Would like to thank these sources for the information found in this blog!

http://www.mobilephones.com/top-5-lightest-smartphones/

http://www.vertu.com/en/signature-touch/design

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_mobile_phones

http://content.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29307,1636836,00.html