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Imagine a typical office. Is it boring and stuffy? Is it filled with grey cubicles, with harsh lighting thanks to the ceiling strips overhead? You may think that this is how all offices look, but thankfully that isn’t the case. In fact, some offices are even cool! Around the world, companies are breaking free from the mould to create workspaces that are inspiring, comfortable, and above all, fun.
Here are some of the best offices around the world:
Autodesk is a software company, renowned for their work with 3D design. In fact, the designers actually used Autodesk technology to develop their designs of the office space. They wanted the office to reflect the minimalist yet futuristic nature of 3D printing, which is why you’ll find a simple colour scheme and plenty of geometric shapes throughout the building. Different teams and parts of the office are connected to one another via the community tunnels, the walls of which double as whiteboards. Meanwhile, the adorably named ‘Cozy Corridor’ is instead a place filled with quiet nooks, for those in search of a tranquil spot to get in the zone. The office is made all the more special by the company’s quest to keep things environmentally friendly, with chairs made from 100% recycled materials and many other pieces of furniture sourced from local suppliers.
Each Airbnb office around the world has its own unique vibe, and nowhere is this more true than at the company’s international headquarters in Dublin. Airbnb is a global platform that allows individuals to rent out spare rooms or even entire homes to travellers. The décor of their HQ pays homage to the company’s purpose, with each meeting room offering a completely different style. Local staff provided the finishing touches to the décor, putting a personal stamp on their work environment. In terms of desks, the design follows a ‘neighbourhood’ concept, with 29 separate (and yet connected) work areas designed to give employees a bit of privacy. Alternatively, teams can gather in the central space and work collaboratively. The ample choice of seating means staff can socialize and engage with members of different teams.
For those of you who have been living under a rock, Pixar is a film studio that specializes in computer animation. The team at Pixar are responsible for creative classics like Toy Story, Finding Nemo, and Monsters Inc. With so much creativity involved in their day-to-day work, the top dogs at the company decided that the office should be a place of inspiration. In reality, it’s much more than that! The Pixar office in California is made up of a lap pool, beautiful gardens and open plan steel frame buildings that look more like aircraft hangers than office spaces. When do I start?
WeWork offices are co-working spaces, designed for companies and individuals to come together and be inspired by their surroundings. The company has work spaces in the UK, US and China. Shanghai’s office sits within what was previously a series of laneway houses. The building’s past is honoured in design features throughout. Visitors will also be impressed by the play of light and shadows, and the way such an open space can somehow feel enclosed and private. In honour of the local community, motifs from the streets of Shanghai are displayed within, while the wallpaper in each meeting room gives a nod to traditional Chinese games that are popular in the area.
The company was previously spread across Philadelphia in six different buildings, but can now be found on one giant campus in the city, which was once a navy shipyard. If you’ve visited an Urban Outfitters store then the office interior will seem familiar. It boasts the same mixture of the old and the new, meeting in a pared back, open and airy design. However, that doesn’t mean it feels empty. Instead, bursts of colour give the place a homely feel, and can be found everywhere from the giant sofas and the office chairs, to the spacious canteen. Since moving to the new premises, Urban Outfitters have reported an increase in staff morale and a decrease in the amount of sick leave being taken. It’s also lowered the staff turnover by 11%. Evidently, it’s a place that employees are happy to
As an architecture firm, Selgas Cano decided that their office should be an example of their expertise. And their office in Madrid, Spain, surely delivers. It’s sleek and futuristic, and in direct contrast with the surrounding nature. The north-facing wall comprises a 20mm thick curved acrylic window, while the opaque south-facing wall is made of layers of fiber-glass and polyester, offering employees shade, and a touch of privacy from the outside world. At one end of the building, a hinged mechanism allows for the wall to be lifted, giving the office a natural ventilation system. Due to its size, the office has limited space for employees, but that doesn’t’ mean it’s cramped. Instead, employees enjoy giant desks, and control of their own lighting.
Bright colours and open spaces are in great abundance at the Cisco-Meraki office in San Francisco. The company is a world leader in cloud-controlled Wi-Fi, routing and security. When the company moves offices in 2013, they began by asking employees what they enjoyed about their current workspace, and any requests they had for the future office. Taking on-board their feedback, Cisco-Meraki moved into a spacious, hangar-sized complex, with meeting rooms ranging from formal and fancy to relaxed and homely. Yurts, cabanas and phone rooms found within the building offer employees a moment respite from the lively atmosphere, while giant chalkboards and corkboards promote collaboration. To get from space to space, staff are welcome to walk, or hop onto one of the company unicycles and pedal. Colour plays an important role in the Cisco-Meraki office, working as a space separator, as there are few walls.
Corporate events are a key element in business, however making sure that everything goes smoothly isn’t always easy. Attention to detail is essential, and organisational skills are key to managing everything seamlessly.
This comprehensive guide will take you through all the stages of planning, so whether you’ve planned countless events with your team in the past or whether this is your first time, you can be confident that you’ll have covered all the bases.
Make A Timeline
Once you know that you’re going to be responsible for planning a corporate event, the first step is to come up with a clear timeline so that you know when every stage needs to be underway and completed. With a checklist in place, you’ll be able to tick off all the tasks you’ve already accomplished, and you’ll also know what still remains to be done so that nothing is accidentally left out.
No matter what type of corporate event you’re planning for your team, you’ll need to ensure that you’re operating within any budgetary restraints. Overspending on the venue, catering or materials must be avoided at all costs, so make sure you determine your overall budget first before allocating the appropriate amount of funds to every aspect of the event.
Depending on the purpose of your corporate event, you will need to plan appropriate activities to suit the needs of your team. Whether you’re arranging a formal occasion in a conference hall or whether you’re organising a team building event outside the workplace, you’ll need to ensure that all of the attendees are engaged and inspired.
If you’re arranging a formal corporate event, you might want to plan in some breakout sessions, with attendees being organised into small targeted groups in order to address issues that are meaningful to attendees on a more personal level. Planning in other interactive activities like icebreakers, workshops and guest speakers will also help to give more focus and direction to the day.
Alternatively, if you’re arranging something informal for team building purposes, you need to decide on an activity that will impress and inspire. A golf day would be one example of an excellent corporate event activity, and hiring the ClubsAway golf simulator can turn any venue into a sociable, entertaining and engaging experience for all kinds of participants.
Arranging A Venue
Depending on the type of event that you’re planning, you may need to book a venue to suit your requirements. If you event is going to be held in your own workplace, this won’t be a consideration, however if you’ll be heading off-site, you’ll need to ensure that you’ve chosen a place that can accommodate the required number of delegates, which is easy to access and which fits into your specified budget.
Arranging Food And Accommodation
Depending on your venue, you may also need to arrange refreshments and accommodation for attendees. If the event will be held in a hotel, this may often be provided by the venue itself, however in other cases, liaising with catering companies and accommodation providers may be necessary.
Buffet-style refreshments frequently work well at a corporate event as it enables attendees to choose their own preferences and to accommodate their dietary requirements. Healthy and vegetarian options should be provided and light fare is often preferable to heavy meals. Asking attendees to inform you about any specific dietary requirements well before the event will ensure that everyone is catered for.
If you’re arranging a formal corporate event with presentations and speakers, you will need to make sure that you hire a keynote speaker who can deliver a thought-provoking and motivating presentation will keep attendees engaged and enthusiastic.
There are many kinds of guest speakers to choose from, including motivational speakers, authority industry figures, published authors and celebrities, however you should rely on recommendations from others within your industry, since speakers should be able to relate to the attendees and discuss relevant issues.
Make sure that your speaker’s requirements can be met and have been arranged in advance, and don’t forget to include the costs of compensating your guest speaker and paying for their food and accommodation in your budget.
Staffing Your Event
Depending on where your event is being held, you may need to consider hiring extra staff, especially if there are exhibits to be set up and taken down. Having additional people on hand to help attendees, to arrange transportation and to replenish refreshments and beverages may be very helpful, especially if there are lots of delegates who will be attending.
Although you will already have your event checklist in place, you’ll need to draw up another shorter one for the day itself just to make sure that everything will go as planned. Some of the things you may need to remember, depending on the type of event you’re arranging include:
- Creating printed materials for distribution
- Setting up exhibits
- Making name tags for attendees
- Printing a register or list of attendees
- Obtaining any necessary insurance or permits
- Finalising place cards and seating arrangements
- Making last minute liaisons with any guest speakers
- Preparing any promotional items or gift bags
After your event, don’t forget to follow up on it to see how well it went and whether anything needs to be changed the next time you have an occasion to plan for.
Ask the attendees to complete a survey about the various elements of the event, for example the food, speakers, activities etc. Find out what they found valuable and what they learned from the experience.
Remember to thank your speakers and attendees, and then gather up all essential statistics and write up a report which outlines the goals that you had, the results you achieved and any lessons learned from the event. This will ensure that the next time you have a corporate event to plan you’ll be able to build on your previous experience to create an event that goes with a swing.
If you’re a small business and offer services such as commercial cleaning in Glasgow then you’re likely to be quickly realising that you need all the help you can get when it comes to making your business a success, espcially online.
That might mean taking on staff members, contractors or even unpaid help – but then again, sometimes just a few extra hours in the day would be the most desirable options.
There are no time machines on this list – but if you want to maximise the time you do have, we can recommend some great time and sanity saving tools!
- A website designer
Mention web design and you could be forgiven for thinking of complex lines of code and years of training.
In actual fact, there are quicker ways to get an online presence.
Take a look at a tool like Wix or Squarespace. They’re both ‘drag and drop’ style site designers and can see you with anything from a holding page to an online store in literally a matter of hours.
You don’t need to have the eye of a designer either, with a series of great looking templates you’ll find that dropping in your own logos and products makes a site uniquely yours with a fraction of the project management effort needed to get a traditionally coded site in place.
In the long term you might decide to look at something more flexible – but to get you out of the gates, especially when money is tight, these tools can be invaluable.
- A project management tool
If you’re putting a team together, whether that’s with permanent or freelance staff, having a central place to coordinate your efforts is worth its weight in gold.
Rather than hoping that everyone’s going to take great notes or read and reply to emails as diligently as you do, you might want to think about a tool like Basecamp, Trello or a similar alternative.
With tools like these you have a central ‘board’ or virtual office space to work from. You can do virtually anything you would in a real office, from having discussion areas, post to-do lists, allocate tasks, share files, invite guests to collaborate and much more.
If keeping everything in one place is becoming difficult, opt for a free trial and see what a project management tool does to your productivity.
- Book keeping software
It’s easy to let money management matters go to the back of your head when there are more pressing jobs at hand – but when there are some exceptionally quick and easy tools to use, you really don’t have to – especially when putting that stuff off causes headaches at tax return time (or a telling off from your accountant…)
Take a look at tools like Xero and Quickbooks, they’re modern book keeping tools that, dare I say it, actually make keeping tabs on your finances quite good fun. Both have nice looking and very usable apps with quick functions that allow you to categorise your transactions with a sweep of your finger.
You can link them with your bank accounts and online payment gateways – as well as being able to quickly scan and categorise expense receipts. You can even generate or pay invoices on the fly. It’s incredible how one app can revolutionise your business financial dealings.
- Collaboration tools
Although tools like Basecamp and Trello have some collaboration tools built in, you’ll find that true collaboration comes with a tool like Google’s G-Suite or Microsoft’s Office 365.
With these options you can almost entirely abandon your office space and set up online!
Setting up folders that you can share with your team means there’s no doubt where that proposal, brief or invoice is to be found – and when it comes to collaboration there’s no longer a need for emailing versions of files to one another. Instead, you can access a document, spreadsheet, presentation or much more and work on it virtually at the same time.
Then, no need for emailing attachments – just share the file and it’s with someone else in the blink of an eye. What’s more, you can message, call or video call from within the service too, meaning you don’t even have to move your chair to work next to someone else.
- Email marketing tools
Despite social media’s rise to the top of most people’s marketing hitlist there’s still an enormous amount that can be done with a good mailing list.
Equally, with the right tools in place you’re going to struggle with the sheer magnitude of putting a mailer out – especially with new data protection laws looming.
This is where tools like MailChimp and Get Response come in. Starting with a list of emails and a drag and drop mail composer you’ll quickly find yourself putting together something beautiful that ticks all the necessary compliance boxes. You’ll find dozens of great templates to work with if you don’t have an eye for design and a few clicks later you’ll have your mailer either sent – or scheduled to go at a time that suits you and your customers.
- A central social media desk
If conquering social media is on your list of things to do you’ll quickly realise there’s a lot of logistics involved – not least remembering a massive number of passwords so you can cut, paste and post across them all.
Using a tool like Hootsuite or Buffer takes a LOT of the effort out of your social media activity. Connect your accounts, then send your communication from the one central desk – choosing which of your feeds it’s posted to. You can even handle replies to direct customer interaction too, making it a great way to keep all your social communication in one quick and easy to use place.
- An online calendar
Our final suggestion is one that’s easy to use – but also easily overlooked!
Having an online calendar is essential if running a tight schedule is important to your business. Microsoft’s Outlook or Google’s Calendar provide simple interfaces and sync with your mailbox and other apps, meaning missed appointments, double booking and needing to get back to people when you’ve checked your diary is going to be a thing of the past.
When you hear the word branding, you often think of companies. That said, individuals have a brand too. Everyone has their own personal brand — whether they know it or not.
Most people don’t even try to build a brand, yet, they somehow grow around you. We all have a digital footprint. In fact, studies show that 92% of children under the age of 2 already have a digital footprint.
The question isn’t whether or not you have a brand, it’s whether or not you want to define what it is before someone else does. What do you want people to think of when they hear your name? Is there a certain industry that you’re very knowledgeable about, or are you a jack of all trades?
Before you can tell people what your brand is, you need to figure it out for yourself. Once you have a clear idea of what you want your brand to look like, it’ll become a lot easier for you to get people onboard.
When you’re determining what your brand is, it’s important to be honest with yourself. You have to be honest and let your brand reflect who you are — flaws and all.
Branding isn’t just important for an entrepreneur who owns a business, even freelancers and employees can benefit greatly by getting their name out there.
For instance, if you’re applying for a job at a prestigious company, you’re more likely to be chosen if the unlucky soul who’s going through the sea of resumes recognizes your name.
Your brand will determine how potential employers, clients, and customers see you and is often the determining factor in the development of your career.
Don’t focus on arbitrary metrics
In the world of branding, many have tried and failed. The most common rookie mistake that most people make is focusing on useless measures of success such as Facebook likes, Twitter followers, and the like. These metrics hardly mean anything to anyone and mean even less to the development of your brand.
What really matters is value. In order to succeed, you need to provide so much value to your customers that you become a household name.
People need to think of you whenever they look at the industry you’re in. When people think about smartphones, they think of Steve Jobs. The same goes for Zuckerberg and social media. Don’t just succeed in your chosen industry, become the face of it.
Find something you’re good at
All the branding in the world can’t help you if you’re doing something that you genuinely suck at. Sure, practice makes perfect, but there are just some things that we can’t do. It’s a harsh reality but you won’t get anywhere if you sugarcoat the facts.
Forcing yourself to do something that is beyond your capabilities will only lead to personal frustration and disappointed customers.
Once you’ve found something you’re good at, take a second to make sure you enjoy doing it. You don’t have to be ecstatic about it, but working in an industry that bores you to death won’t end well.
Furthermore, don’t do things that you both hate and suck at. You’ll do an awful job, hate every moment of it, and be too demotivated to improve your skills.
When you find that perfect line of work, commit every waking moment to honing your skills. Remember, there are millions — maybe billions — of people who do the same thing you do.
Superior skills and outside-the-box thinking will help you stand out in a world crowded by professionals. This isn’t really about competition — although, competitiveness is a good motivator when it comes to perfecting your craft — it’s more about being the best version of yourself that you can be and providing stellar service to those who keep your electricity on.
Choose your platform
Now that you know exactly what you want your brand to become, you’ll need to choose a platform or two to market it on. Rather than shelling out cash for an expensive website and increasing your monthly overhead, start simple by utilizing social media.
Facebook pages and Twitter accounts are good ways to get your name out there during the early stages of your branding campaign when funding is scarce. Post relevant and useful content, engage with your followers by replying to comments and messages, and speak in a human tone — no one enjoys talking to someone who converses like a robot.
Leverage more established brands
Let’s face it, you’re practically a baby in the world of branding. The best way to learn and get noticed is by collaborating with better-established brands such as willshapools.com and leveraging their popularity. Of course, going up to random CEOs and asking them if they wanna partner with you wouldn’t go very well.
The easiest way to find brands that you can partner with is by getting in contact with old friends, classmates, or even co-workers who now own a well-known company. You could write a guest post on their company blog, integrate your software on their site, or improve their UX free-of-charge. Anything that will get you more exposure from their audience is worthwhile.
Set your goals
You can’t be sure of foot if you don’t even know where you’re going. Start by setting specific goals — both personal, and professional. Once you have a clear picture of where you want to be within a certain amount of time, it’ll be easier for you to plan the path towards that end-result.
Identifying your short-term and long-term goals will help you decide what you should spend most of your time on, as well as making other important decisions that could make or break your brand. Your priorities work like a mental compass that’ll steer you towards success.
Sell your products and services
All the time you’ve spent on branding is completely useless if you just order products from AliExpress and outsource projects to UpWork. Your personal brand represents who you are as a professional individual, don’t let your reputation be tainted by the mistakes of others. You’re marketing your skills, so sell your own products and services, not someone else’s.
The bottom line
Building a personal brand takes a huge amount of time and effort, but in the end, it’s worth it. Your brand is something that no one can take away from you. It shows who you are and what you stand for. A true brand is dynamic and ever-present. So tell us, who are you?
Depending on who you speak to, Bitcoin can either be seen as the greatest currency in the world, or as a bubble that’s about to burst. Either description can be true, but some of the downfall people experience with Bitcoin can sometimes be attributed to the way they approach the industry.
Although many people have heard of Bitcoin, not everyone is sure of the inner workings, or the way trades within the industry, which can sometimes mean that many lose money as a result.
Just as there are advantages to this inventive digital currency, there can also be a series of disadvantages. While there are never any guarantees when it comes to investing in Bitcoin, knowing what the advantages and disadvantages are will allow you to find your way around the industry with more ease.
The Stability of Bitcoin
There’s no denying that Bitcoin has had to contend with a series of obstacle to retain its dominance, but there are some factors that question the stability of Bitcoin. This is because when compared to stocks and commodities, Bitcoin is seen as a newcomer. This means that the digital currency has very short track record when compared to the years of data accumulated from other commodities.
However, looking at the stability of Bitcoin from a different perspective shows that you’re dealing with a currency that has held its own in a tough financial environment. A series of businesses also have confidence in the stability and popularity of Bitcoin, as there are vendors that will now accept Bitcoin as a form of payment.
European economists have even gone on record to say that they believe there is no reason should pose a threat, although they did advise that the regulatory oversight currently in place would need to be improved.
The digital arena is constantly evolving, and with so many innovative creations being introduced daily, we never truly know what’s around the corner. This means there’s no real way of knowing Bitcoin will fare in the future, which is why it’s so important to ensure we’re keeping on top of industry news and trends involving Bitcoin, as well as other forms of digital currency.
Risk of Investment
As well as being a popular form of alternative currency, there are those who invest in Bitcoin hoping to make a profit from their initial investment. Some may even look towards Bitcoin mining, which can offer another stream of income if carried out correctly.
Unfortunately, there are some that offer investment opportunities in relation to Bitcoin but may not give investors the full story. Unaware of any risk, investors invest where they can on the assumption that they will yield a bigger return. However, Bitcoin is like any other currency, and its value can depend on several factors. It’s also worth noting that investments of any form always pose a risk.
Those looking to invest in Bitcoin should first carry out research and became familiar with the industry. The more you’re able to find out about Bitcoin, the less susceptible you will be to unsavoury online outfits. For example before buying Bitcoin you should read this review of the Top Cryptocurrency Exchanges 2018
Bitcoin has also become very popular when hedging portfolios, ensuring investors are covered show another form of currency fail to deliver.
Like any investment, we need to be savvy in relation to Bitcoin. Trading blindly may mean that we have luck in some instances, but more often than not, will not have the desired effect. Carrying out research before you invest is the only true way to ensure that any potential loss is minimised.
Bitcoin in Business
Before the birth of the Internet, it would be common for us to have to exchange currency purchasing an items or service abroad, which was very costly at the time. As the Internet has evolved, purchasing an item from overseas is now effortless. While credit can be given to sites like PayPal, the company can be seen as a little intrusive when it comes to how finances are dealt with.
It’s easy to assume that customers who want to hide their details have something to hide, but this isn’t necessarily the case. When you consider how many data leaks they have been in recent years, it’s no surprise that people are a little more reserved when handing over their personal details.
Bitcoin allows customers to make a payment without their details being shared. This means that customer is more likely to make a purchase if they’re confident that their details aren’t at risk. Businesses that offer Bitcoin could grow a larger customer base simply by allowing customers to pay using their Bitcoin.
However, there can be drawbacks should a business choose to accept Bitcoin for payments. Whereas other forms of payment are more recognised, Bitcoin is relatively new. And while the digital currency has soared in popularity, this doesn’t mean that everyone is aware of how it works. As such, you need to ensure that if a business is looking to accept Bitcoin as a method of payment, then you may need to educate your employees as to how the currency works, otherwise there could be some confusing and frustrating transactions.
Like any form of currency, there are advantages and disadvantages when using Bitcoin, but if you’re able to understand how it works and stay on top of current trends, then there’s no reason as to why you shouldn’t be able to enjoy the benefits it has to offer.
If you’re not in full-time employment, or if you are and need a little extra money without that commitment of getting a part-time job where the idea of somebody else dictating where and when you have to work isn’t going to fit your current lifestyle then you could well be thinking of ways to make a little extra money for a specific purchase or just to make life that little bit easier on your wallet.
If you’re going to start making a supplementary income then you really need to be above board as soon as you start making any money.
You should certainly inform the Inland Revenue of your actions because if you don’t you are liable to face a fine if you’ve already begun trading and they think you’re trying to dodge paying any taxes. It’s not complicated though; even completing a self-assessment is pretty straightforward and can be done online. Everything you need to know you should be able to find on the HMRC website at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/setting-up-in-business-se1
If you’re going to be working from home there are instances when you’ll need to check your home insurance for any level of cover you may need and also it’s worth investigating if you’d need to let your local council know what you’re planning if your new business idea impacts the usage of your home or property.
Use your existing skillsets
If you’ve already got a range of existing skills such as previous experience working with security monitoring service then trading on those seems to be the best place to start. It’s more than likely going to be the way you can earn the best rates of pay. So if you have any of the following why not consider putting them to work and reaping the benefits?
Graphic and website design
We all live on the Internet now and there are so many options in how to utilise your design or programming skills to earn extra cash. You can opt straight for sites like Upwork, Fiverr or Freelancer who will match you to clients who need your services. You may choose to advertise your skills direct to the social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Pinterest. They’re all great ways of letting the world know you’ve got skills and are ready to use them.
There are also websites who will produce products for sale using your design work; websites such as Zazzle, Café Press, Spreadshirt or Pikistore; they all print your artwork onto various items from t-shirts to greetings cards leaving you to reap the profits.
Do you speak a second language?
With a second language under your belt why not check out websites like Gengo or One Hour Translation? There are a range of websites who are looking to pay people for translating all kinds of text and copy.
Or with the aid of a webcam and microphone you could offer private tuition. You don’t have to limit yourself to picking up that kind of work from local students anymore — if you choose to utilise the Internet then world is now your new marketplace.
Once upon a time it meant studying and passing rigorous testing to become a taxi driver but Uber have made making a living from passenger delivery a much easier way to earn a little extra. And if you don’t like passengers all that much why not consider delivering fast-food or mail order items? There are a lot of owner-driver opportunities in those markets for someone willing to take the plunge.
Write for a living
You don’t have to be J.K. Rowling to make your millions from writing. Of course if you’ve got it in you to write a best seller than what are you waiting for? But for anyone else with a good command of the language then you can make money writing for the Internet now. You can write and sell e-books; they could be fiction or educational. It’s not the same huge commitment and risk as writing a novel because a lot of e-books can be much shorter, novellas and short story collections are great options to write and sell while you’re putting the final touches of your version of War & Peace together.
A very popular way to make extra money writing now is to write blog articles. It’s a big business for SEO, driving traffic and digital marketing and there are a whole range of places you can apply your services. You can start by applying to write for content sites but once you’re up and running you can use those articles to sell your ways to the digital marketers who really need your skills.
Baking and decorating cakes
The cupcake craze a few years back boosted the work of bakers everywhere. A few well-placed examples on social-media easily gives someone with a talent for creating amazing birthday, wedding or special occasion cakes a great platform for a perfect home business.
The amount of craft selling websites available have made the home-craft industry into something a lot easier than selling your wares in the local village hall on a Sunday afternoon — get on etsy or ebay, there’s an enormous world-wide market just waiting to see your creations. Link it all through Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest and you’ve got yourself a mass of free advertising too!
There are so many options!
This is a massive topic, and there are a thousand other ideas to make money without even using any existing skills. There are so many more ways you can use your existing talents — from earning advertising revenue from your gaming clips on YouTube or Twitch, to offering handyman, gardening or decorating services; you could become a private tutor if you’ve already earned suitable qualifications or just a little higher up the educational ladder than someone who needs a little help.
If you’re musical you could offer your services in cafes or restaurants, playing at social gatherings or networking events. You could become a DJ!
Or for the beautiful and aesthetically pleasing of you there are modelling opportunities that aren’t based around the catwalk — why not put the kids to work? There are all kinds of catalogue and web marketing opportunities out there, and what if you aren’t so beautiful? There are agencies who are looking for those with unusual or specific appearances; so make the most of what you’ve got — whatever it is!
Since one can remember, the United Kingdom has been a leading player on the world economic stage. With its rich history, advancements, culture and increasing diversity-the United Kingdom has not only preserved yet has strengthened its position of power over the duration of time. Today, it is considered one of the top nations to inhabit and work in.
With the average annual salary exceeding £27,000, it is no wonder that individuals aspire to become part of the work force that reside within this great land. Not only that, the National Minimum Wage has increased by four percent from £7.20 an hour to £7.50 instead. These figures were released in May 2017 and leaves open the question, who has the most to gain? In order words, which discipline allows the widest scope for fiscal compensation?
To truly comprehend which work avenues demonstrate the most potential for financial growth, the Office of National Statistics published its Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings in 2016. The institution took on a sample size of one percent of all working professions and utilized the 2015/16 (PAYE) tax records to obtain a real, verified record size.
Time to change your field and consider being a stockbroker! In order to do that, you do not require a technical degree as training is usually provided in house. It is one of the top paid disciplines in the United Kingdom. Now, you must be wondering what does a broker do? Well, a broker is responsible for the procurement and sales of goods and assets that are owned by his customers. These can include insurance brokers, foreign exchange dealers, stockbrokers and stock exchange traders who use the Elliott Wave Theory. Conventionally, a broker can be found at a brokerage firm. His role ranges from managing his clients’ investment assets such as securities, trading stocks and other tools that offer the most profitable return. Insurance brokers deal in the commercial or retail field and strive to create the best possible insurance policy for their clients. The latter includes insurance for houses and pets whilst the former (commercial insurance) provides cover to industries such as oil, gas and aviation. This particular form of brokerage requires a certification from the Chartered Insurance Institute and admission is possible via an internship or an apprenticeship.
It is no surprise that medical specialists are part of the highest paid group of occupations in the United Kingdom. All those hours spent pouring over those thick medical textbooks must reap some form of reward. This vast field includes hospital administrators, consultants, nurses, doctors, anaesthetists, radiologists, surgeons and many more. Considering that they are equipped with the knowledge and competency to save lives, it makes sense that they earn between £76,000 and £102,500 (as per 2016 data). Of course, each different medical arena comes with its own set of specific requirements and criteria that has to be fulfilled before admission is granted.
Telecommunication and IT Directors
Continuous innovation in communication and technology has become a norm in international, modern societies. The advancements in fiber internet technology has revolutionized the way mankind interacts with each other. Smartphones, laptops, desktops, tablets, and such have become common household items and placed the world at our fingertips. It has opened the floodgates to a sea of never-ending information.
These stormy waters have to be steered by someone who is technically savvy and has great natural instincts that he relies upon. Telecommunication and IT directors are constantly in demand across variant industry verticals. An IT director is ultimately accountable for matching an organization’s information technology needs with the right solutions. He is responsible for the management and development of its internal and external IT systems. The IT Director designs the structural framework for all IT requirements and executes all projects as required. The norm is to hold an accredited degree in its discipline: ranging from bachelor’s to postgraduate. A professional qualification is key to getting your foot in to the right company’s doorway and to building a strong economic future. Once adequate experience and expertise has been gained, an IT Director can go on to earn as much as £140,000 a year.
In House Legal Practitioners
Whether a corporate lawyer, in-house counsel or a legal advisor on retainer, individuals from this field have the potential to earn a decent living. It is their duty to act as a guiding beacon for clients, partners and all associated stakeholders in the world of law. To become a lawyer, you need a degree in law or an equivalent postgraduate certification. Also, you have to undergo a training program that is spread over two years and you have to complete a legal course. Traditionally, budding lawyers undertake an apprenticeship which allows them to earn whilst learning. Initial salaries range from £25,000-40,000 a year and go up to £100,000 once an expert in the field. It is significant to note that the United Kingdom was identified as one of the top ten nations with the greatest salaries for lawyers in the year 2016.
If you can become a master of the skies, then you will be able to earn as much as £140,000 annually. Of course, you have to jack up those flying hours to become part of this elite earning bracket. To qualify as an airline pilot in the United Kingdom, you will have to obtain an Airline Transport Pilot’s License (ATPL), pass a background security analysis, a medical certificate and complete a course. It is a challenging and expensive opportunity as the qualification can cost between £60,000- £90,000 and take up to eighteen months. Your journey in the skies will commence as a co-pilot with a salary scale varying from £20,000- £30,000. You will have to log in fifteen hundred hours and apply for a “full” ATPL. Once you have these number of hours on your flying record, then the sky is the limit! Then, you will go on to maximize your earning potential to £140,000 annually. You can retain your set of skills by becoming a flight instructor or an operations manager later in your career.
Autodidacticism is the art of self-instruction in any field or discipline. It refers to the individualistic desire to submerge yourself willingly in a pool of knowledge and to broaden your learning horizons. So keep reading and find out how you can become an autodidact.
An autodidact seeks to sharpen his set of skills through a private and informal process of self-study where he researches, accumulates, engrosses and applies his new found insights.
An autodidact can be anyone: a seven year old girl watching Youtube videos on how to make a fairy wand for a costume party or a forty-five year old, recently single man looking up recipes on how to cook macaroni and cheese.
As a self-educator, an autodidact has full control of the structure and style of his instructive procedure. Of course, he is free to consult other experts in the avenue of his study and gain their advice if he encounters trials that he may require assistance with.
Autodidacticism takes on the utilization of multi-media instruments of erudition that can range from books, videos, hands-on learning, online courses and much more. It is not limited to one kind of learning tool.
The beauty of the Internet is that it has allowed the world to obtain real-time information its mere fingertips and equipped people with the means they need to expand their scope of knowledge. This also has popularized the concept of self-teaching.
If you have had a life long dream to learn how to play the guitar, you do not need to pay a guitar professional to direct you. All you have to do is invest in a guitar and look up a free course online.
This can be attributed to the fact that there is infinite digital information available. Remember you will have an advantage if you have a strong memory and are capable of recalling concepts. There are various ways to become a master of your chosen discipline.
Follow Your Heart
The first and foremost step in your learning journey is to identify the subject matter that you wish to become a self-taught guru in. Go crazy and choose the most random interests that you have been in love with since you were a young child. The best part about being an autodidact is that you do not have to be selective and can commit yourself to developing skills across multiple industry verticals. Casting a wide net in to the sea of knowledge will keep your fire of passion ignited. It will inspire you to venture further into the depths of its detail. After all, your motivation is the most vital guiding component in your voyage of self-mastery.
Devour with Love
After you have chosen what you wish to learn, it should be full speed ahead! Dig, dig and dig! Refer to a multitude of eclectic sources to hone your mind. Yes, the Internet is an effective, endless database of information but it is gain exposure to a human element as well. Wondering how to do that?
Expand your foundation of intended education by registering for workshops, seminars and short courses. It will serve as a great medium to network and to build your base of contacts as it may prove beneficial later down the line if you attempt to earn a livelihood from your newly acquired skills. You may find a mentor or a role model learn from. Perhaps, you can even shadow him once in a while and see what the average day in his life is like. This will give you an idea what to anticipate and help you establish realistic expectations. Finding like-minded people allow you to indulge in an exchange of information and comprehend other people’s perspectives on a similar path as you. It will help you realize that you are not alone in pursuing your passion and will keep you motivated to devour the knowledge surrounding you with a bit of love.
As we have stated that you can learn a lot from the Internet, you must be wondering what kind of sources are available. Do not worry, we will share some of our top recommendations with you.
- Digital Courses: The revolutionary phenomena labelled as distance learning has been around for some time now. Countless universities, colleges and schools have launched online where you can pay to become part of their classes. Accredited and renowned educational institutions such as John Hopkins, MIT and Berkeley offer online classes.
- Podcasts: If reading is not your thing, do not despair. In today’s day and age, we are fortunate to have a variety of tools at our hands that allow us to grow our knowledge. Utilize your listening skills and attend an audio course whilst having your lunch break simply by hearing it. You can do this anywhere: exercising, running, taking a walk or whilst cooking even.
- Ebooks: There is a plethora of free electronic books available online that you can print out and read whenever you have time. Similar to podcasts, you can read them whilst riding the subway to work or in the bathroom. It is completely up to you when you dedicate time as that is the flexibility you have when you are an autodidact.
- Online Encyclopaedias: Portals such as Wikipedia offer free access to useful articles where you can spend the whole day surfing and exploring content related to your industry of study. Make Wikipedia your browser’s home page and begin your day by spending half hour increasing your knowledge base.
Connect the Dots
We live in a complex world where everything is inter-connected. Endeavour to see the bigger picture at hand and find that common thread that links the different tools of learning that you are exposed too. Each fact that you consume will hold value.
However, how you choose to apply that knowledge in your field of study is what will make you a master of that discipline. Peter Drucker, the famous American business guru, once said that “innovation is nothing more that the re-application of existing technology.”
Why Video Marketing?
The trends for online marketing show video as one of the biggest in growth through 2017 and in 2018 it’s only going to get bigger.
Here are some figures that will help you see why:
- Video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80% or more. (via slideshare.net) this has also been confirmed by obe agency we have spoke to Think Zap who offer web design in Glasgow.
- Viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video compared to 10% when reading it in text. (via insivia.com)
- The average user spends 88% more time on a website with video. (via mistmedia.com)
If those three reasons alone don’t help you see why you should already be using video then maybe you should be handing your marketing strategies over to someone else.
For the rest of you here are some ideas to why else you should be considering video marketing and also how you could be doing it.
If you create your video to capture the hearts of its viewers, or make them laugh, cry or feel anything in the slightest that they want to share with their friends/colleagues/others then your video just bought you some backlinks. Not to be scoffed at backlinks are important in search engine ranking and many companies will pay a premium for this. A viral video can provide these by the thousand if you get it right.
Video also demands that your website visitors will have to stay on your site to watch them; no skimming through boring content trying to find the information they need, and the longer any visitor stays on your site the more relevant google thinks it is and scores it higher again in that all important ranking.
By linking back to yourself after hosting your new video not only on your website but on YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, Twitter and everywhere else you can think of not only are you creating more backlinks but you’re encouraging traffic to your website for anyone interested in a) what you’re saying or selling, and b) if there are any more great videos and content to enjoy if they click through.
Your videos need to drive customers to buy from you. You don’t have to beg them, you don’t even have to ask; if your video is informative, trustworthy and shows the benefits of what you’re selling then that should be enough to make it happen.
Your first reason to make a video is to inform so why not make a video tutorial? Show your customers exactly how to use your product. Or show your product in action highlighting some of the benefits they might not have thought of for themselves? Educate them on how your product will save them time or money, or how it will add to the quality of life they wish for.
Show prospective customers how your previous customers have benefitted from your product or service. They’ll believe them a lot more than they’ll believe you. You have a reason to sell – profit; your customers however are only bigging you up because they want to, not because they have to. Testimonials have become a huge part of online marketing and brand confidence over the past few years, so it makes sense to move it forward into a video heavy marketplace where chunks of text are going to be replaced by any other easier method as trends continue in this manner.
Broadcast your Q&As. Why not create a video question and answer session? Gather information or questions from prospective customers via social media or from your website and if you have an email address or social media profile for them either tag or link them in or invite them to watch. For even more chance of views and conversions do it live. Live video feeds on Facebook receive ten times more comments than regular video posts. Do it live and get a bigger response. It’s all about building awareness and confidence that leads to sales.
Methods of Video Marketing
We’ve touched on this already but it’s the number one in getting your product or service out there. How you do it is up to you. There are ways of making a boring product more interesting; it can be as simple as how you present yourself and your company instead of how you present the product. If it’s something a customer already understands and knows about then how you sell it to them can be the difference in them buying from you and not your competitor. Make it fun, make it snappy, make it cool; just make it different from the competition in a way that makes a good impression with your customers.
Vblogging or vlogging is generally thought of as young teens on YouTube doing crazy things or teaching us how to put on our make-up and style our hair. These next-gen gurus are often gaining hundreds and thousands of views just by gathering a following. What would you give to garner that kind of interest for your business?
You don’t have to sell to the teenage masses though, there are plenty of other users out there well over the age of twenty who will want to see what you can offer them and also how, where and why – and if your target audience is the teens we mentioned, then you already know that this is their chosen media so what better place to get involved.
Again, don’t just drop it on your website and hope for the best – get it out there on as many platforms as you can. Email market to let your existing customers know where and when they can view new items; it’s easier to sell more to your existing customers than it is to sell to new ones after all so don’t let that database go to waste either.
Product Testing, Services and Reviews
What a great way to tell your customers about your fantastic product simply by reviewing it. But what about a way to drive traffic to your website? Why not review other peoples products? Ones that have a similar customer base to yours? That way you can mention your product or service in the review and how to find it. It’s all about driving traffic to where you want it and converting it into a sale. Reviews are a great way to jump on someone else’s customers, ones with plenty of existing interest and already making those relevant searches.
Initially viewed as online begging for startups and charities Crowdfunding is now viewed as an acceptable way to gather capital for existing business by letting their clients and customers get in on the ground level. Offering special rates, bonuses and exclusives are the lure but ultimately your video shown on there is still simply good marketing. You’re telling your customers about your product and you’re getting them to buy it. Job done.
Finding an expert in your field of sales or even a celebrity if you’re lucky enough to know one can help you reach out easier to a new market or broaden the awareness of your product. You could end up in the results for searches containing your expert’s name or speciality that in turn could boost traffic to your website. You will also gain brand confidence from your viewers by association. Asking the right questions you can lead the expert to giving a great review whether they were planning to or not.
Once more – do it live on social media and boost those figures even higher.
If you’re looking for ways to tap into a specific market covering an event by documenting it, reviewing it or previewing it can get you into searches less related to your own specific product or service, and give you access to all those new prospective customers.
By choosing an event relative to your trade or area of expertise then you’re already selling to people you know are interested in what you have to offer.
And if there isn’t an event you can cover – you can always put one on yourself!
The impact of visual communication
Recent research done by Adobe brought to light that posts with images on Facebook got a whopping six-hundred and fifty percent higher hit rate than just plain text ones did.
Gif sites reported that there are approximately one-billion gifs being sent per day.
Visual communication grabs the attention:
The brain can process visuals sixty-thousand times faster than it can text. It is safe to say then that visual marketing is a way not only get your point or message out there a lot faster, but people also tend to remember visuals a lot more than text.
As there is a heap of information out in the world today readers and potential customers and or followers tend to skim over words or skip articles void of an enticing picture or video altogether.
So, ensuring your content has just the right number of captivating visuals is going to draw their attention and keep it a lot more than text heavy content will.
Visual communication gets the message across in a clearer more defined way
Reading for pleasure is a way of stepping into your imagination whilst being directed by the author of the book into a world of fantasy.
But when you are reading for something company or business related visualization is a sure way to grab the persons attention and keep whilst they better understand and retain what it is your company is trying to say.
Work collaboration and product training is lot easier for both the instructor and the student
It is easier to understand something you can see the parts and various settings, etc.
It also helps, in some cases, to solve a language communication problem between parties of the company from different areas around the globe.
Bright colors and moving images always make a brand and or logo stick out more.
Putting together a visually stimulating logo combined with the correct voice and pitch makes your companies brand more memorable as people identify the advert to your company.
Using visual communication in a repetitive consistent way regardless of your company’s size or niche in the marketplace is a sure way to get recognition.
Communicating through visual adverts and or aids has a better chance of people remember it
Scientific researched has proven on numerous occasions that visual aids have a much higher percentage of memory retention than that of just text learning. In fact, with visual learning, more than fifty percent of the material is remembered as opposed to between fifteen and twenty with purely textual learning.
You do not have to be an artist or graphics designer to get your visual materials and or logos done. There are graphics programs that can help a person with that.
You can make use of screenshots, there are companies with various graphics you can download such as Pixabay and 123RF.