Is Hiring a Temporary Remote Worker a Viable Option for My Business?

temporary remote workers

A very straightforward question, with a number of very simple answers. How about these for three of the best?

In one word: “Yes”

In two words: “Bolton Staffing”

In three words: “The Remote Revolution”

Three rather varied solutions, but all resulting in the same outcome:

Bolton Staffing’s remote offshore staff will provide you with the specific skill-sets and competencies your project requires while improving your productivity for less than half the cost.          

And that is the Remote Revolution in a nutshell.

Here are 5 Reasons Bolton Staffing Makes Hiring Remote Temporary Workers a Viable Option:

  • Bolton Saffing sources our remote workers from a global talent pool. This means we can fill the specific role you need, whether it be clerical, administrative, technical or managerial.
  • It doesn’t matter how many virtual staff you need. With Bolton Staffing you can build your project seat by seat, or start with a substantial team for a major project.
  • Bolton’s remote staff are dedicated to your project and work solely for you. Because they are employed full time and supervised by us, you avoid risky work-from-home scenarios.
  • Bolton Staffing only charges you for the hours you need your dedicated virtual employee(s) to work, and nothing more. A full-time contract usually comprises 160 work hours per month, but Bolton Staffing offers the flexibility to create long or short term contracts tailored to your specific requirements.
  • Bolton Staffing provides a turnkey solution that includes facilities, human resources, recruitment, payroll, and inclusive services for all your offshore team members.

The end result is cost savings for your company combined with improved productivity. Bolton Staffing takes the work out of recruiting for you, allowing you to focus on the daily operations of your business.

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Top tips for a fail-safe electronic financial transaction

When you use electronic financial transactions such as Online banking and phone banking in your everyday enterprise, always take note that you are placing yourself at risk of fraud and security breaches which could lead identity theft or worse to an expenditure of your entire bank account balance.

electronic financial transactionsTo protect yourself from all these dangers, always remember these helpful tips when doing electronic financial transactions.

  1. Always install security programs provided by your financial establishment.
  2. Do not record or expose your personal information such as in a diary or your wallet where they can easily be seen by anyone and do not give out your personal information to anyone including the employees of your financial establishment.
  3. Always use a different login or password for your bank accounts and certificates. Reset and change them occasionally for added protection.
  4. Visit financial transaction websites by typing the URL unto the address bar or through the use of your Favorites link.
  5. Avail and register for the service which notifies you of electronic transaction history.
  6. Always remember to avoid accessing Online banking from public places such as Internet cafes or from shared computers.
  7. Do not open spam or suspicious emails that could contain phishing links. Always see to it to scan files before opening or storing any email attachment.
  8. If you received notices or emails concerning bank loans, promos or an anomaly in your account always see to it to contact your financial establishment for confirmation.

Simply follow the tips above and you are assured of a worry- free electronic financial transaction every time.

Virtual Assistant: The Busy Realtor’s New Best Friend

Virtual Assistant: The Busy Realtor’s New Best Friend.

Realtors are one of the groups of professionals that are starting to really take advantage of the virtual assistant market. As a Realtor you have a lot of things to do all day long, every day. You are obviously already good at time management, but imagine if you could just take a couple of tasks off your plate, all the time that you would free up to work on other things, or maybe even relax a little bit. There are monotonous tasks that you have to get done to keep your business running smoothly, like database maintenance, telemarketing, mailing thank you cards, gathering information via internet research and much more. These things all sound easy, but when think about how much time you actually spend doing these things it adds up.

Related Articles: What To Look for in a Virtual Assistant

 Let your VA take over things like social media, blogging, and posting listings on various sites. Those are simple tasks that can take up a lot of your valuable time. When you look for your VA find a company or person who has people who specialize in real estate VA work. Then you can use them to be your listing coordinator, open house coordinator, or direct marketer. Imagine if you never had to make an uncomfortable cold call again. Wouldn’t that be nice? If you do speaking events, conferences or other hosted events your VA can help you with speech writing and even planning the event. There are just so many things that you could get help with without having to have an office.

Related Articles: Hire a Virtual Assistant today

 How do you find your virtual assistant?  Ask around your community of realtor contacts. There is a boom right now of Realtors using virtual assistants, so ask someone you know if they have used one, if they haven’t chances are they know someone who has. Don’t jump right in either. Once you find a VA you think you would like to use, give them a small task. See how well you like the results, how fast the turn around time is, and whether you had good communication. If it works out then you can use that person to do other things for you. If it doesn’t work out, you just find another one and try again. That is the beauty of a VA if you don’t like the result you don’t have to fire anyone you just don’t use them again. Check out your VA’s website, read their blog, and check out their social media accounts, it will be helpful in finding a legitimate VA with a record of good work.

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5 Daily Habits for Effective Social Media Marketing

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5 Daily Habits for Effective Social Media Marketing

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The number of recommended actions and suggested tasks that social media managers must engage in can seem downright overwhelming. Not only are you supposed to update dozens of different profiles every day, you have to connect with potential new followers and monitor your company’s branded keywords in order to manage any negative mentions you encounter. And more.

To prevent yourself from becoming overwhelmed and unable to get anything done at all, refocus your efforts on the following daily social media habits made up of tasks you know you can complete. Doing so should help you to form positive brand recognition and responsive follower bases — without driving yourself crazy over everything you could be doing.

1. Check the pulse of your social profiles. As a social media manager, the first thing to do every day is to log into your social profiles. Although this seems like a fairly common sense recommendation, many companies create their social profiles only to let them lie dormant for weeks or months on end.

So whether your company has chosen to focus on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google+ — or any combination of these and other social networks — your first step every day should be to simply log in. Once inside, you’ll be able to complete your goals, all of which play an important role in effective social media marketing.

Related: 3 Low-Cost Tools for Managing Social Media

2. Respond to direct interactions from followers. One of the most important things you can do within your social profiles is to respond to any direct messages you’ve received from followers or potential fans. These interactions come in a number of different formats, including:

  • Facebook messages
  • Posts to your Facebook wall
  • Facebook status or picture tags
  • Twitter direct messages (DMs)
  • Twitter “@” replies

What’s important about these interactions is that they represent people who have put forth the effort to engage with your brand on a higher level than simply observing your content. While these interactions may be good or bad (as in the case of negative reviews), it’s important that you respond to them out of respect for the initiative these followers have shown.

3. Post stimulating content to encourage conversation. After you’ve responded to any direct interactions that have occurred since you last logged into your social profiles, take a few moments to post a status update or message that’s designed to encourage interaction among your followers. For example, you could:

  • Ask a provocative question
  • Share an interesting blog article
  • Comment on a recent news item
  • Post an inspirational picture or quote
  • Request follower feedback on the specific products or services you offer

As you create these messages, make your call-to-action obvious, as social followers are often so overloaded with media inputs that it takes a clearly-defined request to encourage action. Pairing your stimulating content with a statement such as, “Let me know what you think” or “Share your thoughts in the comments” can prompt the type of action to make your social profiles appear more welcoming and engaging to potential new followers.

Related: Early Test: Facebook’s Graph Search a Dud for Marketers

4. Seek out new followers. Ideally, the bulk of your new social profile followers should be coming from people who love your brand and your website content so much that they can’t wait to hear more from you on social networks. But sometimes — whether your website is new or your company hasn’t built the necessary market traction to attract followers naturally yet — you’ll want to be a little more proactive when it comes to building up a follower base for your business.

One way to do this on Twitter is to seek out the profiles of authority figures within your industry. Then, follow people who are following them, and whose profiles indicate that they’d be interested in your company as well. A number of these people will most likely follow you back automatically, increasing the size of your follower base.

Attracting new followers on permission-based websites like Facebook can be more challenging, but the same principles apply. Seek out those who have demonstrated an interest in your industry and the authority figures you follow, make your introductions through direct message and see what happens.

5. Search for your company’s branded terms. One final daily habit is to conduct a quick search for any of your company’s branded phrases, including any common misspellings or abbreviations you’re aware of.

Specifically, what you’re looking for are instances where users you aren’t immediately connected with are mentioning your company’s name. These mentions could be left as unsolicited reviews or questions seeking clarification. Either way, proactively seeking them out enables you to connect with potential followers and create the impression of an engaged, customer-centric brand.

 

Read more stories about: Bookkeeping, Virtual Assistant, Blog Writer

Inspiration for the Downtimes (Infographic)

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If you are thinking about starting your own business, you will have to be persistent in the face of challenges and failures.

Check out this infographic (below) from the startup organization Funders and Founders with recommendations on how to never give up on becoming a successful entrepreneur. For example, if it takes three months to field test an idea, then a 30-year-old who lives into old age has more than 200 opportunities to try out a concept for a company, Funders and Founders points out. Also, keep your expectations realistic. Even the legendary Michael Jordan missed over 300 crucial shots. Most of the time, success does not happen overnight or on the first try.

Source: Funders and Founders
What is your best tip for fellow entrepreneurs on how to stay motivated? Leave a comment below and let us know.

Hate Small Talk? How to Break the Ice When Networking for Business

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Hate Small Talk? How to Break the Ice When Networking for Business

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One of the most important aspects of networking is the small talk that occurs at networking functions. These ice-breaking conversations are important because they are the first opportunities to identify and begin to grow connections with other people, connections that may lead to business referrals in both the short and long term.

The fear of small talk is a common objection those who shy away from networking. Many people simply dread thought of having to carry on conversations with people they don’t know. It’s easy to label these people as shy, but only a small minority of people is too shy to enjoy talking with others. Most people aren’t afraid to talk, they are just intimidated by the task of finding something to talk about.

For this reason, it’s important for business owners to stay on top of pop culture and current events. The latest issues and stories in the news are great ways to break the ice and help you find common ground with a person you may never have met before and with whom you may not have much in common.

Related: 5 Ways to Use Your Network to Grow Your Business

But with the media explosion, it’s increasingly difficult to have a firm grasp on water-cooler talk, particularly when it comes to conversations with people in different age brackets.

So, how do you start — and maintain — a conversation at a networking or other event with someone you don’t know at all

The answer is clear. . . just ask questions.

This sounds simple, because it is. A great way to get people to talk is to ask a few “feeder” questions that will help you learn what the other person is interested in. Then, simply home in on that subject.

You don’t have to know anything about the topic to converse about the topic.

You just have to know enough to ask the questions.

Related: Packing for a Business Trip? Some Must-Remember Items

Now I can hear many of you groaning: “I’m already working 24-7, now I have to constantly search for articles on pop culture and current events?”

It’s easier you think. Mobile news sites such as CNN.com are have set up their pages with easy-to-read convenient categories, such as Top News, Sports, Entertainment and Tech. Either at night or first thing in the morning, you take just a few minutes to read the headlines, and maybe the first one to two sentences. You’d be surprised how much you can learn about “what’s hot” from just a cursory glance. You have enough information to start asking questions and conversing with someone new.

Another important point: By asking questions, you make the person you’re talking to feel like an expert.

I still remember when I realized the value of asking questions and letting someone answer them. I was flying for business, and just prior to taking off, I struck up a conversation with the person seated next to me. I’m not sure what started the conversation, but I wasn’t familiar with the business he was in, and I asked a question. That question led to another, then another. . . and at the end of that two-hour flight, I realized that he had talked the entire time. We made a good connection, I had learned something new, and, as we were gathering our belongings, he complimented me for being a good conversationalist.

Related: Are you a start-up entrepreneur bogged down with basic admin work?

A savvy networker I know named Susan reads the sports section in her newspaper from cover to cover every single day, even though she has zero interest in sports. “Why on earth would you subject yourself to this?” I asked her, as I am admittedly not a sports fan, either.

She replied, “My networking functions are primarily attended by men. I don’t want to stay on the sidelines while important conversations are going on, conversations that invariably start with a discussion about last night’s game.”

The bottom line is this: Taking a few minutes each day to browse enough headlines to arm yourself with enough knowledge of current events, pop culture — and yes, even sports — to be able to ask questions and get a conversation going is simply a good networking strategy.

As a bonus, you’ll learn a lot from these conversations you might never have otherwise.

This story originally appeared at Entrepreneur.com This story originally appeared at Entrepreneur.com