Best Ways to Run a Business Meeting

Every industry relies on business meetings to get things together. Weekly meetings held by tow truck Herndon va help employees to be more productive and work on achieving set goals. Your team members have a lot of things that need to be accomplished and if not well prepared, they can get off track. Business meetings are a fact of life. However, when holding such meetings, you need to carefully plan to ensure you can accomplish what you need without demoralizing your team.

Here are key things you need to get right.

Be exclusive

Employees rarely enjoy business meetings. When the meeting doesn’t require their presence, they will be wasting their time. You need to determine which team members legitimately need to be present at your meeting and limit the number of attendees to wade off those who don’t need to be there. When you involve unnecessary colleagues in the meeting, it is easy to get off track. Fewer people are more likely to get along and agree on several things.

Stick to the agenda

Without a predetermined agenda, your meeting will stray from its course and will likely last longer than expected. You need to create a firm agenda ahead of time to keep attendees focus and ensure you cover all the areas need. Consider inviting people to act as timekeepers and notify others when time is up. Send agenda to those who are attending at least 24 hours in advance so that they can be well prepared with their contributions. If you are facing a specific challenge where you are needed to come up with a solution, encourage them to prepare solutions in time so that they can be discussed in the meeting.

Tell Stories

People will always relate to stories. People retain about 5 t0 10 percent of what they hear. If you can include these statistics with an image, retention will increase to 25 percent. If you can come up with statistics, present them with a story, then retention jumps to about 70 percent. That is the case because facts engage only the language portion of our brains while stories engage multiple parts of our brains at the same time. Stories activate the part of our brain that would have been involved if we experienced the story ourselves.

Change the scenery

Meetings can be repetitive and quite boring, and this can hamper productivity. When your team gets comfortable with its surrounding, they can easily disengage and checkout. You need to shake things up by moving a meeting to a different location. Change the environment as doing so will encourage creativity. New locations also prompt people to be more alert to unfamiliar surroundings, and this ultimately means more engagements. You can also decide to host meetings in new places such as coffee shops, among others.

If you feel like not changing the meeting location, you can consider altering some elements of the meeting by requesting your attendees to stand instead of sitting. Doing so can prompt productivity as you keep everyone alert and focused.

How to Create a Successful Lead Gen Strategy

If you are running a business such as parking management, your audience no longer wants you to buy the attention, they want you to earn it. This means you have to revamp your lead generation strategies across the industries you are involved in and target markets. The first step to achieving that involves creating compelling content, which you can use to convert your visitors into leads. This is always easier said than done.

When it comes to crafting a lead generation strategy, there are 4 Ls involved. Let’s have a look at them.

Lead Capture

There is a high possibility that half of your visitors will never return to your site if you don’t adequately capture some information from them. As a marketer, you need to have a working email but note that your visitors will not always be willing to give out their information. You need to have a call to action and other sign up buttons that your prospects can use to interact with you. Marketers need to be more creative and start gradually using innovative and mutually beneficial opt-in methods to acquire the information they need from customers.

Lead Magnets

A successful client lifecycle will require optimizing the process of converting customers into leads. However, there is a hole that exists between phases of traffic generation that often result in one-time visitors who normally neglect your attempt to capture their information, and you will never hear from them again. You can seal this hole with the use of lead magnets. Lead magnets are tools that provide value for your visitors in exchange for their contact information. Most businesses use lead magnets such as opt-ins, social media follows, and subscriptions to harvest some form of interest from site visitors.

Landing page conversion

Another huge asset your business will have when trying to convert visitors into leads is the use of landing pages. It can be any page that someone lands on after clicking on an ad or other places online. It is important to understand that a landing page exists separately from a company’s website, and are typically used as tools for single marketing campaigns. You can take a free marketing course on landing pages and optimize what you have for your business. The most important element of your landing page is that it can deliver the promise made by your ads. Assure your visitors that as soon as they land on the landing page, that promise will be made.

Lead Scoring

Lead scoring is a component of marketing automation software that helps put a priority on your leads in accordance with their level of engagement with your inbound marketing content. It ultimately helps you figure out who is ready to buy what you offer. When set up correctly, it can help you identify what your leads are interested in. It is a technique used to quantify interactions that prospects have with your content and assigns different points depending on the engagements made. Lead scoring will provide your company with real-time feedback on how responsive your leads are to your marketing efforts.

How to Get a 360-Degree View of Your Customer

Your customers should be at the core of your business, and you should know exactly how they interact with your brand. Roofing in Fredericksburg businesses create a 360-degree view of their customers which involves a deep analysis of customers and their past, present as well as future behaviors, and this allows them to meet and exceed the demands of their customers.

360 Degree Customer View

A 360-degree customer view helps businesses see everything about their customers from all angles. It refers to a complete view of customers that includes everything in their interactions with a brand, and how they reach to you. When you retrieve data about your customers during a buyer journey. You will better understand your customers on how they feel throughout every step.

When you understand how your customers feel, you will be able to show them empathy, which further allows you to connect on a more personal level. This will help in fostering and promoting loyalty and retention.  Here are some of the ways you can use to get a 360-degree view of your customers;

Use a CRM

A customer relationship management software is where you can store all your customer data, and makes it a perfect place to track all touchpoints a customer has with your company. In each customer profile, you create, you will need to record details such as previous purchases, inquiries, and any other forms of communication. You should always update your CRM with each new interaction.

Practical social listening

Customer interactions also include their behavior in social media. Social listening entails the practice of monitoring any discussion of your brand and related topics that happen on social media. The importance of social listening is that people tend to share unfiltered thoughts and opinions on social media, and this can prove to be valuable feedback for your company. You can use their thoughts and feedback to update your buyer persona and improve your business.

Make use of data

When you want to create any customer profile, you should be guided by data. In everything you do, understand the importance of keeping data about your customers. Take time to collect data, organize it, and analyze it accordingly to see what kind of meaning you can draw from the same. A CRM or any other analytics software will help in organizing customer-related information and storing the same for the future.

With a 360-degree view of your customer interactions, you will benefit from a personalized customer experience. Now more than ever, customers prefer a personalized shopping experience. 91 percent of customers are more than willing to shop with brands that offer relevant recommendations that cater to them. When you aggregate all your customer data together, it will give you complete knowledge of your customers and you will be better equipped with knowledge on how to serve them.

Customer intelligence is also key to helping you offer speedy service and response. Gathering comprehensive customer information will help in strengthening your company and you can draw vital insights to help you make better business decisions.

Why You Should Listen to Your Customers

Customers have a certain level of expectation and that is the reason they are choosy on which company to do business with, and which one to shun. Just an instance of missed expectations can make a customer change provider for what they perceive to be a better opportunity. Tow trucks in Virginia Beach try their best to deliver the best customer experience due to the nature of customer demands, coupled with the competition. Stats show 85 percent of customers would switch products or services after a bad experience with a company’s customer service department.

Listening to your customers

To avoid losing your customer base, it is important you listen to your customer and deliver to their expectations. Effective listening to your customers involves connecting with them and understanding how you can help them achieve their goals. You will note that the best customer service representatives are excellent listeners.

Here are the reasons why you should actively listen to your customers.

Reduce Customer Churn

As far as churn is concerned, poor customer service is the second biggest reason why customers ditch their providers. When a customer doesn’t feel valued during a service interaction, they will be quick to look for competitors to get the service or product they need. Customers are even happy to pay more for another provider if they are assured of better customer experience.

Improve customer loyalty

No matter how great your product or service is, you are not completely safe from the churn. Though research shows that 50 percent of customers have no plans to change their suppliers, 80 percent of them end up changing suppliers within the first five years. A simple poor interaction would cause the majority of your customers to shun you. You need to be on your A-game to ensure you keep pace with customer demands and fulfill both their short term and long term expectations.

Increase customer retention

If your customer representative actively listens to your customers, service interaction becomes a little bit smoother. When the customer and rep are on the same page, disputes are solved a little bit faster and everyone is left happy. Ensure there is no friction between you and customers as doing so will ensure customer retention rates are high.

There are a couple of good habits you can adopt to effectively listen to your customers. First, you should let the customer speak. You need to remain actively silent until a customer speaks out all their problems. Even if you already know the solution, you should avoid interrupting. Active listening is important as it shows a customer you are interested in and following what they are putting across to you.

Always stay calm, composed, and humble and be patient with a customer. It can be frustrating to work with some customers, but despite what, always remain patient. Some customers may be nagging, and others might have baseless questions, but as per the universal rule, a customer is always right and should be listened to. While engaging with your customers, always use their preferred channels

How to Improve your People Management Skills

managementAt its very core, business involves two key things; figuring what to do and getting those things done. This is something I came to learn Aberdeen Tow Truck. People are not easy to quantify and control. We all have our hopes and dreams as well as opinions and weaknesses. As a manager, it is not always easy to control a group of people. Humans are tough and hard to deal with. You may want to lead them, but sometimes it happens that they are not ready to listen. We can always improve the way we manage people.

Outlined here are vital tips on the best ways to create a motivated team that can listen to you and is willing to deliver their best.

Outline your goals

As a manager, you will always have reasons and areas you want to improve. You might have the responsibility of taking care of large company goals and you want your team to help you achieve the required results. You might you are a pretty good manager, but it will always be part of your job to continually improve. No matter how good you might be, you need to outline your goals and write them about your goals. Ensure that you distribute these goals to members of your team so that all of you can read from the same script.

Identify areas you want to improve

We are all different and my areas of weakness are going to be different from yours. Once you have identified your goals, next is determining the areas that you need to improve.  To achieve this, you may consider taking a variety of personality tests and professional assessments to assess the areas you need to improve.

Communicate with your team

teamYou will find that your team has a wealth of information on you as a leader. This is vital information that can help you improve. You need to tell your team that you are working on improving various aspects. You may consider sending out a survey that allows your members to remain anonymous during the data collection process. You may also conduct one to one direct reports that ask them to point out the areas they would want you to improve as a manager.

Work out on your organizational skills


One of the key reasons most leaders are ineffective in their leadership is because they are all over the place. They lack the right solutions to help them pursue their goal and resolve conflicts in a professional way. At the start of every event, outline the areas that are creating disorganization and confusion and strategize on how they can be improved.  You may consider taking a leadership course as these can help you meet your people’s management goals faster.

Read management books

Every day, you will be confronted with similar problems. At the very least, your mindset will hardly change. With books, you will set yourself in a better chance to perceive situations with new perspectives. Learn to listen and listen actively. The five aspects of good listening are receiving, understanding, remembering, evaluating and responding. To your employees, practice praising and rewarding. Find a good mentor and learn how to effectively communicate with people.


How to Manage a Construction Project

project managementConstruction management involves having the skills and expertise of a traditional project manager but applying these skills to the construction industry. At the beginning of a project, it is hard to know if a project will be successful or not. Just like you may not be sure if you will get to your destination smoothly, once you are on the road driving. Shit happens, your car may break down leading to seeking towing service. All we do is to hope for the best.

Many things can throw off track, and it’s your job to put everything in order. You may know how to set projects up for success, but there are critical issues and best practices you can employ to help you in managing construction projects. Here are the tips.

Create a flow of communication

Communication is very essential in every phase of the construction project and is among the most critical element of project management. You need to establish a flow of communication with everyone, whether you are communicating good news or bad news. Ensure that you communicate effectively with every supplier and stakeholder in the plan. Having some transparency in your communication will make all the processes smoother to reduce the number of phone calls and emails whenever a problem arises. You can use collaborative work management tools to create a steady flow of communication.

Continuous Planning

project planningMake it a habit of constant planning. Planning is the second most important thing in the five phases of project management. As a construction project manager, you should start planning even long before the actual construction begins. You should also continue revising and developing plans up to the time the project ends. Extensive planning is required during design, pre-construction and procurement stages. In case you encounter some unexpected environmental problems during the pre-construction phase, you may need to change the design.

Observe and Ask Questions

There is no way a project manager will be found sitting quietly at his desk cut from the other members of his team. To manage projects effectively, you need to become an integral part of the process by working literally and figuratively alongside your team. The work of project managers is very much involving, and you need to have more attention and integrated efforts. Field elements can have a dramatic effect on the workflow of construction projects.

Use Automation Tools

Use appropriate tools to monitor costs and budgets. Just from the initial bidding process to the final project closeout, a proper managing of the project involves all the responsibilities of tracking and monitoring costs. Even if you have an accounting department for managing contractor invoices, you also need to work closely with your accountants to ensure that all costs are well maintained. As a project manager, you need to track and monitor all finances appropriately.

You also need to implement automated reporting systems. Note that you will not have the time to respond to hundreds of emails every day. With automation, you ensure that the right reports go to the right people on time. This will help you focus on other tasks and communication.

How to Start and Run a Real Estate Company

managementA real estate company is a business composition that deals with buying, selling and managing investments of real estate properties. If you need to start real estate business, there are simple steps you follow to establish yourself in this industry. There are a lot of benefits to starting a real estate company, be it cash flow, aspects of asset appreciation and tax benefits.  Starting a real estate company involves lots of work, training and time. Real estate involves land, buildings and air rights above and below a land you own.

 Investing in Real Estate

Over the last few years, the majority of people, especially the middle-class families have lost more than half of their net worth because wages keep on falling as inflation rises. A sad reality is that less than 5 percent of people who reach the age of 65 can comfortably afford a decent amount for retire. One great way of avoiding retirement pitfalls that come with lack of money to sustain your aging life is to invest in real estate.

Starting a real estate business or company has never been easy, but it is worth every trial.

Plan Everything

Just like any other business, real estate is a vast field that involves different sectors. Before getting deep into this business, have a clearly set out business plan. Having a plan will give you the confidence required to move on in a calculated way. If you know how much money you need to get your company started, you can plan on what you need, be it office furniture, equipment among others. The purpose of a business plan is to set your goals and direction.

Extensive Market Research

managerThe success of your real estate business relies on performing an extensive market research. The market research will help in establishing if your business ideas will work and if you have chosen the right niche for you. This research will be vital to help you understand the best ways to position yourself within your niche. There are important aspects you need to have in mind. First, ensure that you search the market early to save yourself time and money. Have the right skills to face the market and always work with a mentor in your field.

Build a Brand

Work on building a brand. Branding will come in handy when it comes to building the credibility of your business. With a brand, your business will look bigger than the size of your target market. To turn your business into a brand, you need to get a business logo, branding elements, have multiple ad campaigns and employ other marketing strategies are geared towards creating business visibility. In your efforts in branding your business, build a relationship with potential clients. Engage these clients at a personal level to set your business apart from your competition. Always try to give customers value for their money.

Note that getting in real estate investing requires a sizable amount of funds. Depending on the strategy you use to get into this business, ensure you get financing from the onset. Once you have the required finances, set up your shop, a central place where you physically operate from. Ensure that you equally maintain a good online presence.


Top 3 Best Ways to Invest In Real Estate as a Beginner

beginner real estateInvestors are on the move. They are always looking for new ways to invest their money wisely and build as much wealth as they can. If you are wondering the best way to do it, then look no further than real estate. Many investors choose to invest in real estate over other investment options because of how lucrative real estate is. If you love investing, you will notice that nearly all the money is invested in the stock market. But if you are experienced in investing, you understand the importance of diversity.

In investing, diversity is very important. One way of achieving this diversity is channelling your money to real estate. But most people want to get started in real estate but lack the right knowledge on what to do. If you are among this category of people, here is what you need to do.

Invest in Bigger Real Estate Deal

Yes, you heard me right; invest in a bigger real estate deal. This involves joining others who have a similar goal and thoughts and investing in a bigger deal. It can either be commercial or residential, it doesn’t matter. Depending on the platform you use, you can invest any minimum, as little as $500 and become a property owner. To invest in real estate, you do not have to be an accredited investor. In the past, to make any solid participation in real estate, you had to be an accredited investor. Today, this rule has been scrapped. If you want to invest as a group, there are many online groups you can join, at the top of the list being Realtyshares and Fundrise.

Buy a Rental Property

real estateA great way to produce extra cash flow involves purchasing homes and renting them out. To achieve this process, you only need to purchase a home that allows for a combined monthly mortgage payment, a home insurance and a property tax payment which should be lower than the rent that the property will command. You can buy a house from an area that has high rent returns. Additionally, you can also put a lot of money as down payment so as to make the mortgage as low as possible. However, you should note the downsides of directly owning a rental property. First, it requires a lot of cash upfront – what we call down payment. The second major issue is dealing with tenants as you need to keenly screen them before letting them in.

Flipping Houses

Flipping houses can be an excellent way to get started in real estate, though it presents its fair share of risks. The idea of flipping houses takes advantage of the fact that property values are always on the rise. There is no a better way to get flipping houses than now. Flipping houses entails the sum of purchasing a home under the market value, doing the necessary modifications and enhancements and selling for a profit. To achieve success in your flipping venture, you must hunt down those houses that give you a bargain and make the minimal, most important modifications. When you decide to get started in the flipping business, patience is key. Understand that the house you want to sell after modifications may not get an immediate buyer. This calls for keen attention on the home’s location, need and the price.


How to Get Started in Real Estate Investment

real estateHave you been looking forward to getting into real estate business but you don’t know where to get started? It can be quite easy to get overwhelmed when you think about investing in real estate and having the coveted ‘landlord’ tag. Real estate has proven to be a lucrative avenue for creating wealth. Many of us have dreams of getting into real estate, be it building your retirement home, buying a plot or investing in property. However, many are times where investing in real estate poses to be a challenge due to the risk factors involved.

For all those looking forward to getting started in real estate, here is what you need to do.

Write down your goals

When it comes to setting your goals, the first thing you need is to be specific. When getting in real estate, your goal may be to make a million dollars, buy at least one property per year, etc. When setting your goals, you need to be smart. Smart in that your goals must be specific; they should be measurable and be able to be attained. Additionally, set relevant goals that are time bound.

Pick a Property Type to Invest

investingThe second thing you need to do after setting your goals is to pick the type of property you want to invest in. There are many options in this category. As an upcoming landlord, you have to choose if to invest in residential real estate, multifamily residential or single family ones. There are significant pros and cons for each type of the property you decide to spend in. All you need is to conduct a market survey to establish which ones to work best for you.

Find Out the Financial Requirements

One of the ways to establish the financial requirements of a property is to conduct research. After that, you need to head to lenders and determine what they are looking into. Many are times when real estate investors get a deal but struggle to find financing. It will always work best for you if you can to find funding first and then look for a sale. Try mixing up lenders from traditional ones and private ones. Note that private lenders charge a higher interest rate because of the nature of the risk involved.

Choose Location

Where do you want to build or buy your property? To answer this question comprehensively, you need two things; market research and understanding your customers.  The choice of location will be determined by factors such as taxes, school districts, demographic trends, rent rates, public transportation and internet options. If you fail to weight all these factors keenly, you may end up having a bad deal.

Search for Properties

Once you have set up all aspects into place, your final step would be to search for a property. Searching for a property doesn’t have to be that complex. You can use real estate agents who specialize in investment property of your interest. Additionally, you can use sources such as Craigslist and other online marketplaces. Once you have established the right property for you, it’s time to go forward and make an offer.