Monthly Archives: June 2015

The death of the mall could spell rise of mobile retail economy

In American cities across the country, malls have shuttered their doors after years of operation. These empty behemoths have become the prey of vandalism until the last of the windows have been smashed and copper wiring pilfered. It’s a far cry from their heyday, when malls were teeming with consumers looking for the latest gadget or fashion.

Sometimes referred to as the “death of the mall,” this trend has gathered steam since the 1990s. No enclosed malls have been built since 2006 and some experts predict that as much as half of the 1,200 existing malls may close over the next decade. There are several reasons for this, from changing demographics to the 2008 recession that put a stranglehold on consumer spending.

Technology has been a key player in the death of the mall, say industry observers. Online shopping, the increasing power of the consumer and the use of mobile devices in e-commerce have undercut the allure of the enclosed mall. And of course, preferences have changed: Teenagers are less likely to gather at the mall and their parents are more likely to frequent the gym, putting traditional retail is in crisis.

Just as traditional malls have fallen out of favor, so-called lifestyle centers are gaining popularity. These open-air, high-end shopping centers mix entertainment and leisure activities, restaurants and retail, residential housing and office space to create a gathering place that transcends “hard-core shirts and shoes retail,” as Fran Reiner, a senior urban designer and development consultant at DMR Architects in Hasbrouck Heights, N.J. characterized it. These mixed-use locations focus on creating a unique experience for consumers and a diversity of reasons to frequent them. Lifestyle centers, say some, are the key to resurrecting retail in an era where simple purchases are no longer a draw.

crm vacant mall 2 mobile The death of the mall could spell rise of mobile retail economy A once-thriving mall that is now vacant

“If [retail] wants to survive, you have to be out of the commodity business and in the experience business,” said Brian Sciera of WS Development, a retail development firm, in a PBS special on the shift from malls to these so-called lifestyle centers.

Using mobile retail to create unique experiences

While e-commerce made up less than 10% of retail sales in 2015, the Internet, online sales and now mobile sales have, undeniably, changed the dynamic between retailers and consumers. Between 2007 and 2014, for example, online sales doubled; in 2013, mobile sales also overtook PC sales. And according to data from InReality, a retail marketing and strategy firm, 25% of store shoppers who use their mobile devices in stores make a purchase on those devices while in the store.

In the next chapter of retail, technology may play an even more prominent role. Technology shifts have forced retailers to reduce their footprint in physical stores, where rent is high and foot traffic low. They have also compelled retailers to use digital technologies such as Beacon sensors and consumer personalization to drive consumers back into the store. Based on device location, Beacon sensors can detect when a consumer is near or in a store and send coupons, messages or other relevant offers based on prior purchases and customer profile. Mobile wallet technologies can also send consumers relevant offers and discounts on their mobile phones and enable them to pay directly from their phones through services like Apple Pay.

[Retail has] to be out of the commodity business and in the experience business. Brian ScieraWS Development

Retailers like In the Pink, a series of high-end retail stores in eastern Massachusetts, are capitalizing on mobile technologies to create unique in-store experiences. Gordon Russell, CEO of In the Pink, has launched the Springboard Retail application, a cloud-based mobile retail management system to help drive foot traffic to stores — and provide incentive for customers to stay and buy in them. That goal requires bridging the gap between the digital and in-store experience, Russell said, and then providing a unique customer experience.

So, for example, Springboard can identify that a high-end customer has browsed online and placed a few dresses in her shopping cart. If the customer is proximal to a store, Springboard can send her a message, saying, “We know you have these items in your shopping cart. We happen to have them in stock at our Newbury Street location. Would you like to schedule a fitting today?” That kind of personalized service, Russell said, is more than just shopping.

Bringing customer data into the store

Arming sales associates with tablets in the store means they can access customer data and sales intelligence that boosts insights. “On a handheld,” Russell said, “they can know who is in the store and make product recommendations that are more accurate by factors of 10. [Springboard has] a customer dashboard so an associate can understand how to interact with a customer based on data. The associate will know the customer’s average spending is high, return rate is low, and that she buys a lot of sweaters and shoes. So [the associate] can make recommendations based on that data,” he said. Using these mobile tools means that sales associates can provide added value to the experience of shopping in a physical store, Russell said.

Other retailers also recognize that they need to use technology to create customer experiences in the store. At Nordstrom, a high-end retailer based in Seattle, Aaron Smith, director of mobile applications, has piloted a program that uses mobile devices and a “smart mirror” in fitting rooms — a mirror with various options to get product information as customers try on inventory — to augment sales associates’ service.

With the mirror and a smartphone, customers can scan an item to see its price, look at the item on a model, check availability in other colors and sizes in the store, or view other items that complement a dress or pair of shoes.

“By having the  salesperson providing recommendations and the mirror providing recommendations, there is a symbiotic relationship … where they complement each other,” Smith said. “It provides that context that is valuable for the salesperson, instead of having the associate go to the back room trying to troll around finding stuff; customers can check the mirror and send a message to the associate to go grab it.”

Creating customer experience; creating community

But technology alone can’t create the unique experiences consumers now demand. So developers, said DMR Architects’ Reiner, need to consider more than just how many stores to stuff into a given location. They need to consider the kinds of communities and environments they are creating.

Reiner also emphasized that mixed-use developments can improve quality of life in cities and suburbs. However, this requires residents advocate for more than simply a retail haven, but a community experience as well.

“Too many towns are reactionary in how they approach the type of communities they want,” Reiner said. “Too often, developers come to a town and say, ‘This is what we want to build.’ And then the town has to react to it. As communities, we should more proactively state what we want for our downtown. Residents should say, ‘This is what we expect for you to be a part of our community.'”

Next Steps

Customer identity management thwarts multichannel plans

Mobile technology helps entrepreneur grow business

Mobile payments begin to take off?

Customer personalization helps companies sell more

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SearchCRM: CRM and call center FAQs

Nobody like reverse Centaur

 Nobody like reverse Centaur

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 Nobody like reverse Centaur

About Krisgo

I’m a mom, that has worn many different hats in this life; from scout leader, camp craft teacher, parents group president, colorguard coach, member of the community band, stay-at-home-mom to full time worker, I’ve done it all– almost! I still love learning new things, especially creating and cooking. Most of all I love to laugh! Thanks for visiting – come back soon icon smile Nobody like reverse Centaur

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Deep Fried Bits

Friends Pee On Electric Fence

Wetness and electricity do not mix well.  Exercise prudent judgment in selecting the best place to void.

mWExz25 Friends Pee On Electric Fence

“Don’t Whiz On The Electric Fence.”
Image courtesy of http://imgur.com/mWExz25.

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Quipster

Which Chinese Telecom Continues To Dominate The Mobile Market?

China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom all published their operating statistics for May 2015 and China Mobile, who has over 800 million mobile users, continues to lead the Chinese telecom market.

Statistics showed that China Mobile gained 373,000 new users in May 2015 and its user group reached 816.335 million. Of those, the number of 4G users saw a net increase of 17.188 million and the total number of 4G users reached over 170 million. At the same time, its 3G users continued to decrease and saw a net decrease of 6.566 million in May.

China Telecom reported that its mobile users saw a net increase of 910,000 in May to a total of 190.68 million. Of those, 3G and 4G users increased by 2.01 million to a total of 129.18 million. Meanwhile, China Telecom’s fixed-line phone users decreased by 620,000 to 139.94 million; while its broadband users increased by 400,000 to 109.18 million.

For China Unicom, its total user number was 290.306 million by May 2015, representing a decrease of 1.913 million compared with the previous month. Prior to this, China Unicom lost 2.532 million users in March and lost 1.609 million in April. In addition, the company said its 3G and 4G user group reached 152.787 million, accounting for 73% of its total users.

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ChinaWirelessNews.com

Strategies to Win the Battle Against Declining CRM User Adoption

The Gartner Group performed a study and found that nearly $ 20 billion is being spent on CRM. With so much money being invested within the CRM industry, why is it that not even half of all companies are adopting CRM strategies? According to calculations made by Gartner, about $ 9 billion of the $ 20 billion invested is being wasted. This lack of adoption is largely caused by the fact that many CRM platforms are not simple to use. This comes as a surprise for many CRM experts because CRM software is designed to improve the sales process. Another primary cause lies in the fact that many CRM platforms are not mobile, and in a globalized world where sales teams stay on the go, mobile CRM is crucial.

If your company has yet to implement a CRM strategy, it’s imperative that you avoid certain pitfalls that augment a lack of adoption. If you already have a CRM strategy but you’re not using it as you should be, you may want to consider investing in an automated platform. Here’s a quick look at a few tips for making sure your adoption process goes successfully.

Provide a Fully Functional CRM

Your CRM needs to be fully automated, delivering an assortment of functionalities and capabilities. By delivering these functionalities over an extended period of time, preferably in manageable chunks, your team will be more apt to adopt the application.

Mobile Access is a Necessity

According to Nucleus Research, mobile CRM platforms enhance productivity by 14.6 percent. And when using a mobile CRM program that allows workspaces to be customized, the returns are even greater. From tablets to smartphones, CRM data can be input and tracked via a mobile CRM platform. (www.socius1.com/mobilecrm/)

Heavy Data Capabilities

Your CRM program should boast data enrichment and lead sourcing features as well as contact cleansing. By making critical client data available in the cloud, your staff can use the crowd sourced data to boost leads and maximize profitable opportunities. And through automated updates of input data, sales reps can keep track of the client-specific data they are most interested in instead of having to sift through basic data.

Email and Voice Integration

Many CRM platforms lack the ability to integrate email and voice functions. Because of this, users are constantly having to switch back and forth between applications to send a message or make a quick phone call. With email and voice integration, however, the communication of CRM data is streamlined, which increases productivity and provides a superior user experience.

Social Support

In addition to email and voice integration, social support and collaboration are essential to CRM adoption. In fact, Nucleus Research found social capabilities integrated with CRM increases productivity by another 11.8 percent. It’s through social data and capabilities that you can gain a deeper insight into your sales pipelines, which enables you to maximize your sales resources.

By Socius, a CRM Partner in Ohio and Kansas (www.socius1.com/crm/)


Sources:

http://topsalesworld.com/sales-library/articles/a-lack-of-automation-in-crm-solutions-keeps-adoption-rates-low/

http://www.destinationcrm.com/Articles/Columns-Departments/Reality-Check/The-Adoption-Rate-Challenge-94828.aspx

http://soffront.com/blog/tag/high-crm-adoption-rates/

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CRM Software Blog

Hadoop for Audit

Somewhere in windowless unglamorous temp space reserved for auditors, there should have been quiet celebration. Syncsort had just announced Ironstream, its tool to move massive mainframe log files to Splunk. It was now possible to ingest SMF, Log4J, SYSLOGs and other mainframe high-volume records into Splunk Enterprise. Even without Splunk, organizations already had the option of using Syncsort DMX-h, an ETL tool to ingest high volume audit and ops data into Hadoop.

But many fear the Big Data story has yet to reach those sequestered cubicles.

ravi via flickr 3946084502 70f7e1ab6d b Hadoop for Audit

Big Data for audit may represent a broad step forward in GRC.

Big Four Big Data

It’s no accident that professional services firms originally engaged only for audit duties – such as for tax or public accounting functions – expanded into other services within customer organizations. A rich history of series of mergers and acquisitions has left four very large multinational firms which are responsible for auditing almost all publicly traded companies, and many private ones, too. Taken together, these four firms — Deloitte, PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers), EY (Ernst & Young) and KPMG — account for almost three quarters of a million professionals worldwide.

The work of these many thousand professionals is usually distilled to one image, one single activity – the financial audit. A goal of financial audits is to assess the validity and reliability of information provided by a company. In addition, auditors are responsible for studying a company’s internal controls. Of course, if one reads the fine print, it is worth noting that audit findings are only as valid as the evidence provided by the company and the systems used to manage that evidence.

Outside of public accounting circles, the other work performed by audit firms is less well understood, but is at least as important as financial auditing. The realm of Governance, Regulation and Compliance (GRC) is one where Big Data can change what goes on in those windowless offices.

GRC Agility

For well-understood regulations like Sarbannes-Oxley, guidelines from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, and PCI Security Standards (“PCIDSS”), GRC has many dimensions.

Governance can include adherence to accounting standards across multi-national operations. Compliance can involve adherence to national and local taxation, employment and reporting. Regulation can involve industry-specific reporting that is mandated by national, state or local agencies, or mandated by court orders as a result of civil actions.

The audit challenge grows in direct proportion to the use of Big Data for transactional data in ecommerce. The recently described American Express Big Sync Platform was once separate data warehouses based on relational databases. Big Sync is now a single Big Data system that includes a recommender system to “make deals on the fly that merchants want consumers to take advantage of.” Big Sync is big. It consists of 17 server nodes, has around 300 cores and stores almost 1 petabyte of data per rack. Suppose the audit task is to judge the validity of revenue the company attributes to Big Sync-initiated transactions. Auditors might, at the least, need to sample transactions from Big Sync. To do so, they might need access to Big Sync’s Apache Solr, an enterprise search tool used in Big Sync, or perhaps hook Big Sync to Tableau or QlikView for data visualization.

Sleuth vs. Sleuth

Some facets of audit involve discovering anomalies, searching for patterns in logs. While the use of Hadoop and similar tools for network security is much discussed (e.g., recent startup VArmour ), Big Data auditors are likely to look beyond the increasingly well-understood area of cybersecurity to areas closer to home.

For example, in 2011 J. Perols identified financial statement fraud detection as a useful application of statistical and machine learning models. This approach can be extended using tools like Apache Mahout to operate on data stored in Hadoop or other Big Data repositories.

Despite considerable training within the Big Four in tools like Tableau and Splunk, audit professionals will typically need to partner with information technologists to further customer Big Data audit projects for customers. The key takeaway for auditors is this: Hadoop and other unstructured data repositories represent a cost-efficient way to collect data now – on a Big Data scale. This data can be subjected to immediate machine learning systems, or collected for later analysis.

One example of the trend is evident in the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (Finra) proposal to run the SEC Consolidated Audit Trail , which is designed to help regulate markets in the world of high-frequency trading. The proposed platform incorporates Hadoop, Amazon Web Services, Hortonworks and Cloudera components to enable Big Data analytics to support market surveillance.

Such tools may well be needed to stay one step ahead of the misdeeds of bad actors. Some of the bad actors may well be insiders like Jérôme Kerviel, responsible for a $ 7B loss at the French Bank Société Générale. Otherwise audit firms could lose audit business to competitors – as well as to forensics specialists.

Reference

Johan Perols (2011) Financial Statement Fraud Detection: An Analysis of Statistical and Machine Learning Algorithms. AUDITING: A Journal of Practice & Theory: May 2011, Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 19-50. http://dx.doi.org/10.2308/ajpt-50009

Photo Credit: Ravi via Flickr

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Syncsort blog

CFPB: Mortgage Servicers Still Rooking Consumers

Mortgage servicers got a bad name during the subprime mortgage crisis, but despite that reputation damage, and despite new laws designed to get them on the straight and narrow, they’re still up to their tricks, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has found.

Between January and April, many servicers violated Regulation X, which spells out requirements for soliciting, completing and evaluating loss mitigation applications.

Infractions included burying borrowers in paperwork. At least one servicer sent borrowers loss acknowledgment notices requesting lots of unnecessary documents that were not applicable to their circumstances, for instance. Another violation was requesting documents borrowers previously had submitted.

Some servicers didn’t send any loss mitigation acknowledgment notices after a loss mitigation processing platform malfunctioned repeatedly. This delayed the conversion of trial modifications to permanent ones, hurting borrowers.

Others treated certain requests as pertaining to short-term payment relief instead of requests for loss mitigation under Regulation X.

Still others misled borrowers about how deferred mortgages worked.

In other cases, servicers didn’t send any loss mitigation acknowledgment notices.

The Bureau’s Role in Crime and Punishment

Overall, the bureau’s efforts across all industries got more than 80,000 consumers a total of US$ 11.6 million in remediation.

“Where the CFPB finds violations in the course of an examination, it considers many factors in determining whether or not to pursue an enforcement action,” bureau spokesperson Sam Gilford told CRM Buyer.

These include the types of violations, the magnitude of consumer harm, the institution’s willingness to take corrective or remedial action, the effectiveness of the institution’s compliance management systems, and whether the institution is a repeat offender.

The Evil That Mortgage Servicers Do

“Over the years, mortgage lenders or servicers have been doing very bad things to consumers,” said Linda Sherry, national priorities director at Consumer Action.

Those things include discriminating against borrowers, denying people on public assistance loans, and using special techniques on immigrants and people of color to discourage them from applying for mortgages for which they were qualified, Sherry told CRM Buyer.

The CFPB last fall reported that for the period between 2011 and 2014, it had received nearly 29,400 complaints against Bank of America for mortgage-related grievances — loan servicing, foreclosures and related issues — making it the most complained-about servicer in the category.

Wells Fargo was the runner-up with about 17,600.

In third place, with 13,500 complaints logged against it, was Ocwen, which was under investigation for issuing backdated letters to borrowers who sought loan modifications.

The Good That CFPB Does

The CFPB earlier this year made NewDay Financial pay $ 2 million in civil penalties for deceptive mortgage advertising and kickbacks.

Green Tree Servicing this spring had to pay $ 48 million in borrower restitution and $ 15 million in fines levied by the CFPB and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. Its violations included mistreating mortgage borrowers trying to prevent foreclosure on their homes.

The bureau earlier this month filed a complaint in federal district court against RPM Mortgage and its CEO, Erwin Robert Hirt, for illegally paying loan originators bonuses and higher commissions to steer consumers into costlier mortgages.

“All told, [the CFPB] is doing all they can, and they’re doing a good job about it,” Consumer Action’s Sherry said.

Illegal or deceptive behavior by mortgage services “has been a serious pain point for consumers,” she noted. “Everything they do faces tremendous pushback from the industry, and Republican lawmakers have filed bills in Congress seeking to strangle them.”

The bureau had planned to launch a tool that would let consumers look up and compare mortgages, but industry pressure has forced it to hold off on the launch, Sherry said, adding, “I’m hopeful they’ll get it up and running.” end enn CFPB: Mortgage Servicers Still Rooking Consumers


Richard%20Adhikari CFPB: Mortgage Servicers Still Rooking ConsumersRichard Adhikari has written about high-tech for leading industry publications since the 1990s and wonders where it’s all leading to. Will implanted RFID chips in humans be the Mark of the Beast? Will nanotech solve our coming food crisis? Does Sturgeon’s Law still hold true? You can connect with Richard on Google+.

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CRM Buyer

5 Powerful Steps to Manage Virtual Teams

More and more small businesses are embracing the potential behind a virtual team – where some or all team members live and work remotely.   

Remote teams are an especially big draw for small businesses, as they both reduce the overhead costs associated with a traditional office and create a much larger pool of potential applicants. Additionally, remote working allows small businesses to offer the flexibility that many big firms may not.

Virtual teams can take many forms. Your team may live in the same geographic area yet work from home all or part of the time. In some cases there is no centralized office at all, with team members working, living and traveling around the globe while still carrying out their role. 

“Our entire staff works remotely from their dream locations around the world, and travels freely as they choose. Not only does that reduce our overhead, but also it increases staff happiness and empowerment substantially, which boosts motivation and productivity. It also allows us to hire the best talent regardless of where they live. And finally, it makes management easier because it requires our company to operate in a results-based economy instead of a time-based economy. “

Matthew T. Bowles, Maverick Investor Group

Moving away from a traditional workplace model also means that traditional management advice and operational procedures may not apply.  Managing virtual teams requires a specific set of tools, hiring practices and a laser focus on strong communication. 

5 Steps to Managing, Motivating and Staying in Touch with your Virtual Team 

 

1. Hire right + keep ‘em happy

With a virtual team, hiring can be both more challenging and even more important than in a traditional small business office. 

“Hire people that are way too qualified for what you’re looking for, even if it requires a higher wage than planned. It can be really difficult to manage people remotely and the more qualified someone is, the less you’re going to have to manage them!”

Mark Aselstine, Uncorked Ventures

10 member fully virtual team

“Hiring virtually can be scary, which is why it’s important to give it as much care and thought as you would if were doing it locally. To limit risk each member of my team started out with a smaller project to determine fit, working style and more. That enabled me to build trust with them quickly.”

Maggie Patterson, Intelligently Crafted Communication

Virtual team spread across North America

2. Create a virtual water cooler

In a traditional office environment, opportunities for social interaction outside of the business role abound. In distributed teams, however, these interpersonal relationships can be more difficult to build. 

“The virtual water cooler really allows the team to connect on a personal level and builder deeper relationships. It helps us all get an understanding of what makes people tick, what annoys them, their beliefs, their attitude to work and life. To do this we’ve created a couple of message groups where team members can post anything that’s not work related. It was through these groups that I found out the team was really into the show The Wire. From that I could quote lines from the show and I knew it would resonate, get a smile and make it a little easier when I’m asking where we are with the latest build of our product.”

Ed Morgan, Swoodle

25 member distributed team in Ireland, Spain and the US

“Set up a standing Google Hangout to a set URL. When we have meetings, people can hop in and out as needed – some show up early and make small talk. It makes the virtual experience more similar to the interpersonal experience and helps create those water cooler moments, which are hard to create when you work virtually.”

Chris, Yoko Co

15 member virtual team

“Find at least two times a year where you can meet in person and work for a week together. Working remote is awesome, but working in person from time to time is needed to make the relationships a lot stronger. Our productivity has literally doubled as coworkers are working with each other a lot more effectively.”

John Rampton, Due

15 member partially remote team

3. Communicate

Just as you’ll need to go the extra mile to make sure your employees are building relationships with one another to help them be more invested in one another, you’ll also need to think outside the box and take extra steps to be sure your communication is frequent, detailed and on point. 

“I send a monthly email to everyone on the team. I keep it informal and as short as I can, but I use it to update everyone on any changes or developments in the business, introduce any new team members, remind people about a process or performance standard and to keep them updated on current projects  so everyone has an idea of what the company as a whole is working on, not only their own projects.”

Ali Marsland, The Effective English Company

Team of 10 based in UK, USA and South Africa

“One thing that helps me teach them new tasks is screencast video tutorials. I use Camtasia to record both what I’m doing and what I’m saying. I taught my assistant how to grade student quizzes by recording a screencast video of myself doing it, and talking about how I determine the score for each question. She now grades them for me and it saves me tons of time!”

Caitlin Pyle, ProofreadAnywhere.com

Five member internationally distributed team 

“We have a practice of sending a status email at the end of the day to recap hot customer needs, call-out specific follow-ups, etc. It keeps the team on the same page and ensures consistency and top-notch customer service. We don’t want any customer needs to fall through the cracks.”

Dana Ostomel, DepositaGift.com

Fully remote team

“Have all staff on a regular structured video call. It is the one time that we all can see each other, know that there is a bigger business that has many moving pieces, and realize that each individual is responsible for a piece of work that directly impacts someone else. Seeing each other provides motivation and builds trust that a conference call or email cannot.”

Jeff Lefler | CEO, FranchiseGrade.com

4. Rely on documented systems (and find the right tools to make them work)

“A big win for the team as we’ve grown is creating systems to streamline all of our operational tasks. From marketing to client onboarding, we have a documented system and everyone knows who needs to do what when. It’s such a simple thing, but with a team where you can’t just lean over and say ‘Hey,did you do X?’ it is critical.”

Caitlin Pyle, ProofreadAnywhere.com

Five member internationally distributed team

“We live and breathe by our CRM to organize a remote team across Canada/USA. Being able to operate from the same system and able to see the same info in live time is crucial to operating our furniture platform. If a client happens to call and whoever answers phone updates file, whoever is working on that file sees instant updates and pass tasks from one to the other easily. It’s really the backbone to staying organized, operations and driving sales of any SMB.”

Kelly Fallis, Remote Stylist

5. Keep culture (and time zones) in mind

When managing virtual teams, it is highly likely that you’ll need to deal with challenges like different languages, cultures and time zones – issues that don’t often crop up with a traditional team. 

“Language is important– we have to be crystal clear and try not to use colloquialisms, especially when we’re getting technical and planning roadmaps. It’s not really productive to have one team laughing at some little quip and the others staring blankly not knowing what’s going on. If you’re not conversing in your mother tongue, be concise and err on the side of being over-polite; that way you’ll not offend anyone. 

Taking time to understand the culture (even the simple things like knowing the Spanish Team like a long lunch because it’s their time to catch up with the family, while we in Ireland are at our desk with a sandwich) is important. 

And don’t get shocked if you hear a two-year-old crying when you’re on a video call – it might be lunchtime for you but it could well be bedtime in another location. It’s a good idea to ensure some overlap time – when all parties are available to come together.” 

Ed Morgan, Swoodle

25 member distributed team in Ireland, Spain and the US

Like any employees, the real members of your virtual team will need to feel connected and integral to the success of the business – just as if they were working in an office down the hall.  

“In the end, you have to treat them the same as any worker in your immediate vicinity. That means a high level of respect, understanding and clear communication. You have to listen to them, feel their needs and stay in personal and emotional communication constantly. Don’t assume out of sight out of mind, It is a living relationship … never forget that.”      

Craig Wolfe, CelebriDucks

We would love to hear from you!

Do you have a virtual team?  What are your best tips, tools and techniques for getting the most from your remote small business team?  Please share in the comments below or reach out on social (don’t forget to tag @infusionsoft). 

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zooophagous: masterkittens: Saying you child is your “kid” is…

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zooophagous:

masterkittens:

Saying you child is your “kid” is an insult to goats everywhere.

I’ll insult moms everywhere. Fight me Pam.

Blogtastic!

Parting Irony

The founder of the hateful anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church, Fred Phelps, died last year. One of his 13 children, Nate Phelps (who has become an outspoken critic of the church) posted this message to Twitter after the Supreme Court decision legalizing same sex marriage:

Screen Shot 2015 06 28 at 10.34.23 PM Parting Irony

Nate also offered to officiate at any same sex weddings.

Maybe he has a point. Perhaps people were so appalled by the horrific antics of the WBC that they reacted with sympathy to the gay cause. Or maybe their antics prompted this as punishment from an angry God. Mysterious ways and all that.

share save 120 16 Parting Irony

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Political Irony