Top tips dream chasers need to stay out of trouble

By Eric Bradford

am i dreamingDream chasers need a bit of delusion to keep pressing forward, especially during times when their efforts yield little to no results despite how long they have been burning the midnight oil. Even when dreams are fulfilled, there’s the work of maintaining a dream. In fact, this work has, at times, seemed harder than realizing a dream in the first place.

If dream chasers aren’t careful, they could become overly frustrated and give up. They could also fall into depression or get trapped in the haze of a dream and ignore signs that it’s time to start heading down a different path. Should people who are chasing dreams not heed signs soon enough, they could lose their life savings, deteriorate relationships or convince themselves that all they need to be happy is the fulfillment of their dreams.

Following are top tips that could help dream chasers avoid the above (and more) traps and slip ups. They’re worth paying attention to whether dreamers are just pursuing a goal, in the middle of dream fulfillment or working to maintain a dream that has already been realized.

  • Find four activities that you absolutely love. Make sure that one of these activities brings in enough money to cover all of your bills. The other three activities should be something that works wonders at getting you to relax, something that stirs up your creativity and something that puts you in contact with other people who share passions similar to yours.
  • Spend time nurturing two or more relationships each day.
  • Read books that teach you new things.
  • Watch movies that leave you feeling good.
  • Pursue dreams because you love what you do, not to impress others.
  • Value your health by eating vitamin rich foods, drinking plenty of water and getting regular exercise.
  • Be honest about your finances.
  • Keep a journal to spot your patterns, especially patterns you’d love to hide from yourself.
  • Pay attention to nighttime dreams, but don’t use them as your only guide.
  • Heed your instincts.
  • Stay in touch with friends.
  • Do something fun that has nothing to do with the dream you’re pursuing.
  • Budget how much money you’ll invest in your dream.
  • Get enough sleep.
  • Accept support.
  • Go full tilt after dreams before you take on commitments like children, a mortgage, etc.
  • Get the education you need to realize your dreams.
  • Keep learning.
  • Don’t let short term events ruin your long term goals.
  • Remember that change is a part of life in this world.
  • Love yourself – really, really love yourself.
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Distribution center partnership advantages

By Edward Johnson

top distribution centersMajor retailers like Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Pet Center may not work with your company if you don’t have a partnership with one or more major distribution centers. Reason for this is that major retailers carry thousands, some millions, of different products. If these retailers had to buy 10 or more products from 10,000 different companies, they wouldn’t have time to focus on marketing, public relations, interior design and employee development.

By partnering with major distribution centers, you could tackle two retail challenges. You could get dozens, hundreds or more of your products in dozens of stores in a matter of minutes. The best distribution centers also stock and ship products direct to customers.

To get started with a distribution center, your business needs to have enough products. If your business only develops or manufactures one product, distribution centers might be shy about taking you on. Types of products that your business sells also need to have a shelf life, meaning that the products can endure several days of sitting in storage. Additionally, as someone partnering with distribution centers, you have to keep manufacturing enough volume in product to fulfill customer orders.

The last thing distribution centers want to do is tell retailers they work with that popular products are out of stock. Plainly, telling retailers they can’t have what they want isn’t a good way for distribution centers to build long-term rewarding relationships.

Just as leaders at distribution centers are choosy, you should be too. After all, every distribution center doesn’t provide the right services that you need as a manufacturer or retailer. As a manufacturer, you could be better off partnering with large facilities, centers that cover shipping and handling and that give manufacturers and retailers access to online tracking systems.

You’re also going to want to work with distribution centers that keep costs down. To be cost effective, distribution centers ship products by the truck load. In addition to having shipping and docking areas, the best distribution centers also have export, quality assurance, inventory tracking and management and packing areas. Ask about visiting distribution centers you’re interested in developing a partnership with before you ink a deal. Pay attention to the types of products the centers specialize in. Also, find out which major retailers the centers work with.

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Is it time to trade up to the new iPhone 6?

By Eric Bradford

iphone6 image


Business executives are a long way from the initial Blackberry launch, an event that took place over a decade ago. Seems implausible that a telephone (so small it fits easily inside your pant pocket) with the capability to download files off your desktop computer or laptop and serve as an email pager is now perceived as a technology dinosaur.

Today, Samsung and Apple are frontrunners in the mobile telephone space. Both mobile telephones put a diverse range of services at the fingertips of small business owners. For example, there’s:

  • Web browsing (4 gigabytes of bandwidth and up; can you say multiple business conference speaking video downloads in a matter of minutes)
  • GPS
  • Gaming options
  • Voice and email (loaded with contacts, favorites, storage options, etc.)
  • Tasks and reminders
  • Weather
  • Music
  • Document sharing
  • Faster, sharper streaming
  • Reliable data networks
  • 16+ MP cameras
  • Crisp imaging
  • HD Display

Both the Samsung S4 and S5 and the iPhone 5 offer the above features at the minimum. What sets the Samsung S4 and S5 apart from previous iPhone models is Samsung’s larger display screen. And it’s exactly this area that the iPhone 6 is rumored to have grown up in.

Purportedly slated for a September release, there is talk that the Apple iPhone 6 will have 5.5 inch display screen. But, not so fast. iPhones with the larger screen might not be the first to roll out. You might have to wait a few weeks to get your hands on this upgraded mobile phone.

The new iPhone 6 is also said to be powered by an IOS 8. Flying on an Apple A8 processor, WiFi connections should come with fewer hiccups and faster streaming. If you’re a busy executive who relies on large volumes of data to stay ahead of the competition, this can only be a plus.

It remains to be seen whether the Apple iPhone 6 will be water resistant. Although there are whispers that the iPhone 6 will run Android, specialists say that’s not likely to happen. What the phone might have is 3D imaging and a battery with an 8-day power boost. Like a music CD that has had one to two songs leaked, what doesn’t have to remain to be seen is how interest in the new iPhone is picking up steam. If the phone is released on September 9 (the rumored release date), lines may not be as long as they were when Apple released the first iPhone on June 29, 2007, but rush to check out the new mobile phone may well outpace the type of rush that the release of the iPhone 5 saw.


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College students make business internships payoff

By Eric Bradford

college business internship













Thousands of college students are ending their summer internships. If these college students were fortunate, their internships allowed them to do more than file, scan and copy stacks of documents, completing projects that regular employees are willing to do near anything to avoid.

A good business internship introduces college students to the real work world. Instead of copying, scanning and filing all day, interns:

• Sit in on webinars and conference calls. Progressive employers may also encourage interns to attend team and divisional in-person meetings and prompt interns to contribute to the meetings, offering suggestions and personal insights.
• Provide interns with projects that they can actually lead, giving interns the chance to work independently as well as build their leadership skills
• Assign interns one or more group projects to complete before the end of summer
• Develop schedules that let interns get a deeper view of the business by participating in a job rotation program
• Make is possible for college students to earn college credits based on work they complete during internships

It goes without saying that the best business internships pay college students. Some companies that operate college internships pay students $25 an hour, more than three times the federal minimum wage. These employers pay competitive wages because they know their internships are “meaty”, offering students valuable insights into today’s business environment.

Those are a few hallmarks of rewarding college internship programs. But, what happens after students return to college? How do they make their internships continue to pay off after they are back in the classroom?

What follows are steps that college students could take to keep summer internships they participated in paying off for months. Um, hmm. . . Networking plays a pivotal role in several of the steps.

• Contact business managers and ask them to connect via LinkedIn (Some business managers post job updates, training seminars, networking events, etc. that their firms are hosting that college students could take advantage of, even after their internship has ended).
• Add their summer work experience to their resume, digital portfolio and social media profiles.
• Send managers they completed internships with holiday greetings. By sending employers a Christmas, Thanksgiving or New Years greeting, students can keep in touch with their potential future employers three times a year.
• Study markets and industries employers they intern with operate in. Doing this teaches college students about terminology, trends and analytical data that’s impacting these markets and industries. Simply being able to speak a potential employers “language” (i.e. terminology) can set future college graduates apart.
• Subscribe to news feeds and alerts that deliver quality information (i.e. stats, facts, business acquisitions, mergers) right to their mobile phones or email. A lot is going to change in the business world over the next two years. It pays to keep pace with the impending changes.

College students should definitely take the time to send a “thank you” card or note (handwritten notes can leave a lasting impression) to managers and supervisors they worked with during their business internship. When they start their search for a full-time job, it also pays to contact these managers and supervisors. Even if these employers don’t hire the students, they may offer suggestions or agree to give a strong recommendation to students as they apply for jobs with other employers.

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Breakfast for champions – You’ll love this low calorie omelet recipe

By Rhonda Campbell

recipe for low calorie omeletEggs are one of the most eaten breakfast foods and rightfully so. Loaded with protein, eggs are easy to prepare. Add in the right ingredients, and eggs become a filling food. Furthermore, of all the dishes you can cook using eggs, breakfast sandwiches and omelets are dishes that millions of Americans order from restaurants and food trucks each morning.

You don’t have to live out West to love this omelet

However, you don’t have to go to a restaurant and pay for an omelet to enjoy a hearty egg breakfast. You can make this omelet at home in less than 20 minutes. Ingredients you need are:

  • Two eggs (if you’re especially hungry and want a large omelet, go for three eggs)
  • Smoked turkey (use lunch meat so the meat is thin and less chewy)
  • 1 tablespoon of margarine or butter
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 small red pepper
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/4 cup of mild shredded cheddar cheese (an alternative you can use is two slices of American cheese or another favorite processed cheese)

Dice the onion and red pepper. Use 1/2 a cup of the onion and red pepper. Place the remainder of the vegetables in a small container, seal and place in the refrigerator.

Next, grease a medium sized skillet with the margarine or butter. Break the eggs in the skillet. Stir the eggs until they are well blended. Make sure the eggs are spread across the skillet.

Drop in the onion, pepper and cheese. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Let the food cook until the egg is lightly browned and the cheese is melted. This should take about three minutes.

Fold the egg in half.

Remove from omelet from the skillet with a spatula and serve with a bowl of fresh strawberries, a banana or another fruit you absolutely love. Enjoy!

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Using your creative talents to build a successful enterprise

By Rhonda Campbell

creative business picturesThe first years of your working career might be spent trying to find jobs that pay the rent or mortgage. If you use your creative or artistic abilities several times before and after you start working these “pay the bills” jobs, you might feel a twinge of regret, something pulling you to change careers. This is what happened to Christine Hughes, owner of Darling Studio.

Take creative talents from part-time to full-time business success
Christine shares at her official website that, “Like many artists, I took the long way here. I studied communications instead of art, trying to do the right thing. I traveled up and down the coasts and throughout Europe, trying to find myself. I worked as a retail monkey, a coffee slinger, a newspaper reporter, and a web producer, trying to make a living.” She goes on to say, “I tried everything but the right thing.”

To build a successful enterprise using your creative talents, analyze the market, checking to see how you can use your talents to fill a perceived consumer need. You might spot this need as you’re searching for a product or service online. Follow your frustration with how you can’t find what you’re looking for; could you create the product or service yourself?

Some business leaders suggest that you start a business part-time. This way you could continue to receive income from your current job. Other business leaders advise against this. As reported in Bloomberg Businessweek, MGPS business consultant, Phillip Moorcroft shares that launching a business part-time significantly reduces your financial and psychological resolve to make the business successful. Moorcroft says, “Going in with the Plan B mentality—”I’ll try this for six months and if it fails, I’ll go work for my uncle”—is not workable.”

To increase your chances of achieving ongoing business success, manage your time wisely. During the early days of your business, tracking your time in a day planner or spreadsheet could prove invaluable. Market your business, partnering with copywriters, advertising agents and marketing specialists as needed.

By developing relationships with the media, you can get coverage for local, regional, national and international events your business is involved with. This includes charitable, educational and industry-specific events.

Be professional. Treat your business as if it is your sole source of income. If you don’t you could end up working your talents part-time forever. You could also get frustrated and start to believe that your talents will never afford you a full-time job you love.

Track the results of your efforts. Don’t just distribute press releases or run social media marketing campaigns. Measure the results of these efforts. You might find that working a social media ad three different ways generates more sales than using one ad by itself. To stay encouraged and inspired as you use your creative talents to build a successful enterprise, read books and stories of other creatives who found ongoing business success.

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Boost your chances of getting jobs you really want

By Edward Johnson

finding the right job for youOnline job boards come with specific advantages. Search for employment at online job boards and you gain access to hundreds of jobs in a matter of minutes. Pay attention to salaries associated with specific jobs, and you could also discover pay ranges for jobs that interest you. Identifying responsibilities aligned with work roles, noticing the signs of a stable company versus a company that’s struggling to get a handle on its cash flows and getting an idea of how long a role has been open are other advantages you get access to when you search for employment using online job boards.

Bringing your dream job within reach

Those are the good points. Searching for quality employment at online job boards are brings challenges. For starters, you could spend hours, weeks or months applying for jobs that have already been filled. As hard as it might be to accept, some jobs listed at online boards are old, but remain up because recruiters haven’t gotten around to taking the job ads down yet.

That shared, there are steps you can take to boost your chances of getting jobs whether you use online employment boards or not. Be willing to revise your job cover letter, especially if you haven’t been hearing from recruiters. Other steps you can take include:

  • Submit a cover letter with your resume. Edit the cover letter so that it’s unique to the specific job you’re applying for. At the least, include the name of the company and the position you’re applying for in the cover letter.
  • Provide contact information (i.e. cell phone number, email address) on your resume and in your cover letter.
  • Follow-up with a telephone call to recruiters. Don’t badger recruiters. That shared, a follow-up telephone call could set you apart.
  • Ask recruiters why you didn’t get a role if you’re not hired. Listen to what recruiters share. Use this information to approach your next job search differently.
  • Study companies and markets you’re applying for work in. It’s a turnoff to recruiters and hiring managers to find out that you don’t know anything about their firm or their industry.
  • Consider working internships at companies you want to build a career at. Keep in touch with recruiters at companies you intern with. Definitely let the recruiters know when you’ll be graduating and apply for open roles when you see them at the company’s career boards.
  • Contact former colleagues and hiring managers at companies you want to work at, requesting that they refer you for employment.
  • Give employment agencies a chance. Just make sure that you work with reputable agencies.
  • Search for quality employment every day until you get the job you really want.
  • Attend corporate job fairs or recruiting events. These can yield better results than attending statewide or regional career fairs. You could also learn about higher paying jobs at corporate job fairs or recruiting events that are hosted by one to four firms.
  • Keep your skills sharp. You can learn a lot by taking online training programs and by watching free training videos.
  • Practice interviewing. On this point, you can learn new ways to interview each time you engage in a telephone or in-person job interview. From this perspective, no interview is a waste.

As with any tactic or strategy, monitor the results of your efforts. Pay attention to how many emails or telephone calls you receive from recruiters after you send them your job cover letter and resume. See if certain keywords attract different recruiters. Be open to making changes until you land the quality job that you really want, a job you’ll enjoy working for years.

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