January 24th, 2013

Can the high street survive online shopping? [Ann Andrews CSP]


I feel for anyone in retail; I hear about people going into their shops to browse and try things, and then leaving the store and buying online cos its cheaper to do that.

I'd hate to see the high street become just a street of banks - don't know about you.

What can retail outlets do to survive? Genuine question - I'd be interested in people's thoughts.


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Ann Andrews CSP, Dip Bus (Pmer)
Published Author, Professional Speaker, Team Specialist, Entrepreneur

NZ a happy place to live and apparently a great place to be educated [Ann Andrews CSP]


Just seen the OECD rankings on various factors per country. Apparently NZ ranks as follows:

* 11/36 for overall well being
* 8/36 for percentage of people in paid work
* 11/36 for life expectancy (if we keep out of the sun)
* 5/36 for education (that's a total surprise)
* 8/36 for safety
* 30/36 for work life balance (which seems at odds with our well being and life expectancy
* 36/36 for finances (percentage of income spent on housing. Auckland is now the 3rd most expensive place in the world to live.

So we live well, are well educated, work hard but may soon have to start living in tents!!

Only joking, there's nowhere I'd rather live - ann

How To Manage Unlimited Projects - FREE ADVICE! [John Murray]


I have commissioned my website designer on a website for my son, a drummer based in London. They use a superb on-line Project Management Software on which the whole project is broken down into individual tasks and each task is allocated.

All involved in the project have a login in and documents, photos etc are all uploaded based upon the tasks set. They are viewed and can be amended by all involved in the project.

It is VERY cost effective and being 'cloud based' it means all involved in the project can contribute from wherever they are in the world.

They offer a 6-week free trial. It costs just $20 pcm to manage 10 projects, $50 pcm for 40 projects, $100 pcm for 100 projects and $150 pcm for unlimited projects.

Question: What makes us any different? [Damian Mark Smyth]


The difference

I was watching Africa last night on BBC and the thought came to me, that all of the amazing wildlife in the programmes has the same life force running through us as we do. The amazing colour and richness of life really brought this to the fore.

So what makes us different? Why are humans considered to be special and superior to other life on earth? I'm not talking about our 'capabilities' here, those are obvious. I'm talking about the life that runs through us and makes us alive, what is different about that?

Buy Do Nothing! here

A to Z of good words … M is for [Mike "Freddie" Gordon]


M (obviously) .. aka Judy Dench .. Bond's "best kept" secret mistress

M & M's (candyly) .. always a fun website

Murder (famously) .. Hitchcock's Masterpiece of Mystery and Melodrama

But my most memorable M has to be Montserrat - a Spanish masterpiece and monumental monastery. All of which malarkey (tortuously) brings me to a magical melody … with Montserrat and Freddie ..

Does Cesium Chloride Kill Cancer Cells? [Lucas Wyrsch]


Cesium: A Cancer Cure that Slipped through the Cracks

Dear Ecademists,

In 1981, did the American Cancer Society drop the ball on a bonafide cancer cure?

Jenny Thompson, Director, Health Sciences Institute, wrote that "independent research shows pain vanishes within 12-36 hours...tumors dry up within weeks...the potential to save millions of lives every year, thanks to a cesium chloride treatment that kills cancer cells.

What do you think?

Does cesium chloride kill cancer cells?

Please feel free to comment, share, add your ideas and thougths!

Have a great and happy Thgursday!


- Lucas

Business cards - still relevant? [James McBrearty]


There are a number of ways to pass your details to people you meet, for many people though the traditional business card is the fastest and easiest way.

I've seen many thousands of cards over the years, but there are a few things people do that I regularly see.

With this in mind, here are my top tips for a poor business card in order to create a bad first impression:

Flexible Retirement Planning Solutions 2013 [Marcin Zientek]


Take the legwork out of your retirement planning

People are living longer and the number of retirees is growing. Longevity should be a blessing but many investors are worried they will outlive their savings. So it is essential to consider saving for retirement as early as possible and to decide where best to invest for your requirements

Deciding how to plan
There is a bewildering choice when deciding how to plan for your retirement, and it is important to weigh up the cost and complexity against the potential returns. If appropriate, one option to consider is a Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP). Originally designed for people with higher-value pension funds, they've become more prevalent since the UK pension simplification legislation of 2006.

Talent Management agency baby model Oscar [Suzy "find a model" O'Connor]


Meet new Talent Management agency baby model Oscar. He's sociable, full of smiles and is already showing ambitions as a singer. We're delighted to have him registered with us and are looking forward to supporting him on his first assignment.

Vital statistics
Height: 65cm
Weight: 6.2 kgs
DOB: 14 Sep 2012

How would you describe Oscar's look?

"Oriental mix, bright, black eyes, black hair, clear skin...BIG smile."

Where did your interest in registering him for Talent Management modelling come from?
"Oscar loves looking into a camera and we receive a lot of passing compliments."

What made you choose Talent Management?

"The ultimate victory is to win without conflict." [Marcus Cauchi Sales Management Training]


What My Clients Say About Me

As with much about martial arts and life, sales and business often benefit greatly if we look at things through a fresh lens. Our conviction that we are right or we have THE answer leads us to become closed to others, to new ideas, better ways of doing things. And it feels so right to be so wrong, doesn't it?

How often have you found yourself defending a position and instead you end up following the adage that the best form of defence is attack? We justify. We defend. We tell others they are wrong.And then you discover embarrassingly that you had leapt to a conclusion that was wrong and behaved like a boorish ass! Or is that just me?

I have a question for you to consider if you will.

Free Sales Clinic and Networking/121s Tuesday 5th Feb, London [Marcus Cauchi Sales Management Traini


What My Clients Say About Me

I'm holding an impromptu free sales clinic and networking event on Tuesday 5th February in London (20 Mortlake High St SW14 8JN - 3-4 stops from Clapham Junction, 90 second walk from station).

I'm sorry it's such short notice but if you fancy coming along and getting some selling tips from someone who has made more mistakes than I care to remember and leaned from many of them, then we can network and there is a yummy tapas bar over the common if we're getting along and fancy networking over lunch.

Sales clinic 0830-1100. Networking 1100-1330.

Let me know here or via email (mcauchi(AT)sandler.com) if you want to come along. All welcome.


Marcus Cauchi
Managing Director

Picture Blog: Yawn, Roll Over, Go Back to Sleep [Andrew Field]


African Sun Banner
With a passion as warm as the rising African Sun!

Its Thursday, your stress levels are up a little, your haven't quite met your targets, that task list just gets longer and longer... Well if that is your case this week, take a tip out of this fellow's book.

Lions don't set deadlines, or list tasks, nor try to reach unachievable targets. What a wonderful way to exist... each evening, wait for an antelope to pop along, kill it and consume it, then fool around a bit, nudge nudge, wink wink, before the big boys go walk about and then sleep it all off... yes, sleep for the next 15 to 20 hours... I guess that is what weekends are for, but we are not there yet.

Wrong fat in Pregnancy [Durwin Banks]


By Durwin Banks
Southampton University: The wrong fat in pregnancy diet 'may make kids fatter'.
More great work from Southampton. I have been to a number of presentations where researchers have detailed results of work around The Southampton Women's Survey, which I believe is the largest cohort of young women anywhere involved in measurements and assessments of lifestyle and diet.
The results of work done there are always impressive but in relation to fats, they often do not quite get it - or maybe one more question needs to be asked, the question of balance and how the modern diet impacts the balance of fats in our bodies.
The fact that the health service is about to be overrun by obesity and diabetes is reason to welcome this kind of research, but from my point of view it could do so much more.
Let's ask that question, let's stand up to the industrial food empires. It is our right to have food that nurtures us and to understand what that is.

Facebook and Customer Service [Ian Calvert]


One think that you want when you buy something, is a product that works.....

So, what happens when you buy something that doesn't work? You contact the company or supplier and this is where customer service is important or is it? In my opinion this is vital and no doubt you believe this in your business too and thus you expect from them. With ecademy, LinkedIn and some other on-line groups, you have a team (either paid or volunteers) who are there to help you, answer queries and provide technical support.

With technology moving on or is it a case of streamlining (normally a technical term for reducing costs / maximising profits), yes things can be made more efficient such as a forum where you can search for answers or view a "Frequently Asked Questions" page, a automated multiple choice question and answer section and then chance to submit a question leading to a reply but what about nothing more?

BNI YES or NO? Ecademy results = 0 [Andy Lunn]


Hello all.

I have been thinking of looking into joining a BNI group I have heard both the good and the bad and wanted to know other peoples experiences. I have been here on ecademy for what feels like years and years and have contributed and given warm introductions to other members who I though it would benefit to meet / link.

I have never had 1 potential prospect or job come my way in all that time on ecademy so I wonder if there is anything in this social networking at all, feels like everybody sells on ecad and nobody buys. Is this the case with the BNI groups? after all it is yearly subscription based.


Film, Video, Post Production, 3D
www.media73.co.uk - hello@media73.co.uk

Are You Getting Your Money's Worth from Your SAP Systems? [David Long]


West Trax has completed over 1,500 analyses of SAP production system KPI's for over 100+ companies and 13 industries. Typical issues identified using this benchmarking data include: -
• More than 50% of the available and relevant standard SAP code was never used.
• 30-40% of all programs used during period analysed were custom code.
• 30-40% of these custom code programs were never used.
• Unused custom code programs were maintained for months or years.
• Missed opportunities to reduce support costs by €200,000 to over €1,000,000 p.a.

West Trax provides unique SAP system KPI measurement and benchmarking services that help organisations identify and quantify their potential to reduce costs, improve business processes and enhance usage quality.

These can be particularly valuable when preparing plans and monitoring the results of SAP outsourcing, upgrade and consolidation projects


Mind set possibilities [Carolyn Williams]


Yesterday I had this enormous urge to support my home town football team. Swansea City was playing Chelsea in the semi-final. It was a 19.45pm kick off. Around 3-4pm the impossible happened, it snowed heavily cutting of minor roads, villages and it brought parts of the M4 to a standstill. The Swansea City head grounds man was interviewed on BBC Wales saying "there would be no cancellation, the ground had under cover heating". smile

So a well thought out under cover heating plan' brought about a successful match with Swansea City, a small club getting through to the final at Wembley. This match is to be played on February 24th.

When Swansea City first got into the premiership at Wembley, the following headlines...
" would the last person leaving Swansea, please remember to shut the
door" brought a knowing smile to anyone associated with the Swans. The club has an incredible loyal fan base, so much so; all seats in the stadium are taken.

Sometimes, some people don't recognise an opportunity when it smacks em in the face... [Fraser Hay]


As a NEW Year Gesture of positivity...

I'm offering the first 3 ecademy members who can recognise a good deal when they see it, a FREE membership to The Grow Your Business Club whilst we finalise Beta testing.

This is a just a wee random selection of what's inside.

Drop me an email at fraser@theventurecatalyst.co.uk. It's limited to 3. And it's on a first come, first served basis. Sorry but rules are rules.

A FREE membership? ..and from a Scotsman - Who'd have thought?

Choose to Take Action. (Before Your Competitors Do.)



Fraser J. Hay

Do you interact enough on twitter? [Samantha Kelly]


I have been on twitter since last June and I have noticed something lately. Some people are not interacting enough on twitter. Ask yourself


Retweet other's tweets that may be interesting to your followers?

Read the tweets of others and reply to them to start a conversation?

Thank people when they Re tweet one of your own tweets? (Very important)

Follow those who have followed you and may either be interesting to you or need a bit of a boost in followers?

Join in conversations that are interesting to you? (You are allowed to do this on twitter)!

Support others by doing a #FF or shout out to give them a little boost?
(#FF is Follow Friday...this means that you are recommending them to others to follow. You can do this as a way of thanking followers for support every Friday)

This may or not cause a stir. Ah well. Just wanted to share my thoughts....and....here....we.....GO!


NOTHING ABOUT A BUSINESS OR ANYTHING. THIS WAS JUST MY THOUGHTS ABOUT GUN CONTROL. (Not an easy fix by all means, but I believe there are more important things to really worry about that is tearing apart the country I fought for in the United States Army, and I am sure more of my military bretheren feel the same way....and you civilians too! wink )

Ever since the tragedy in CT at the school, all you hear about now is Gun Control. (The new thing thats sweeping the nation, talks about Gun Control) Honestly, I think a person has a right to carry a gun, BUT no matter how many laws get pasted about gun control, more guns just show up.

Are your young sales people even remotely capable of reading buying signals [Ann Andrews CSP]


According to Barry Urquhart ' many of those entering or who have recently entered the workforce are adept at interacting with smart phones, iPads, tablets and computers, but not so with human beings.

With a cruel trust of fate, some managers in their endeavours to address and redress the significant sales and profit leakage have compounded the deficiency and the problem. They have implemented on-line training programs about customer service, selling skills and positive interpersonal relationships!

So agree. I've just had my step-son staying with us - he works for one of the biggest computer companies in the world - who shall remain nameless - trying to have a conversation with him was like pulling teeth.

If you have young sales people who can relate to texting etc but can't hold a conversation with another human being, you might like to read the full article here - ann

Why small businesses are fed up with government [Ann Andrews CSP]



'Banks received $700 billion dollars in handouts in October 2008, with almost no regulations or restrictions. In February 2009, big businesses and big state governments received $787 billion, an incomprehensible $1.5 trillion total dollars. General Motors alone received $30 billion dollars when they would not have qualified for a credit card.

The top job provider in the U.S. economy is businesses under 10 employees. Those with 11-19 employees are second. Seventy-nine percent (79%) of all businesses in America have less than 10 employees. Yet they receive little or NO help from government.'

Those are American stats, but I would guess they are repeated in the UK and Australia and certainly here in NZ.

Chuck Blakeman is the champion of small business - those are his remarks - read his full article here - ann

Sowing and Reaping [Leigh Ashton]


"The mind is its own place and in itself, can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven." John Milton

Do you know just how much amazing potential your mind has?

More than you can possibly imagine.

Your mind controls everything you do...

Most of which is completely unconscious. In fact about 95% of what you do is unconscious. You have no real awareness that it's going on... like the blinking of your eyes, breathing in and out, the blood running through your body, the pulse in your neck and so much more. Until I mentioned them just now you gave those things no thought at all. They just happen.

What's that got to do with sales?

How to use credit cards safely [Nick Dewey]


After having had a bad credit history myself I have finally got myself a new credit card and am planning on building my credit rating back up again, and so partially as an attempt to crystallise my views and partially as a way of helping others, I think it is a good idea to help tell people what credit cards are there for.
They are, in my opinion, not a cash life line.
They are a way, a strategy, that you can use to help get better credit in the future, but have to be used in the right way.
They are not a method to get loans for any real length of time, and certainly not cash loans. Cash withdrawals on a credit card cost a fortune and quickly get out of hand.