How Voice Search is Potentially Evolving and How Local SEO Will Change

Voice search has really gained popularity, with devices like Amazon’s Alexa enabled devices becoming more popular and widely used in homes all over. Rather than jumping online or grabbing a phone to type in a search, you can simply use voice commands to get the answer to any question you may have.

They technology is also able to work with other devices to create convenient hands-free operation. Voice search has the potential to advance and also continue to impact local search engine optimization. Several business owners weighed in to give their opinions and thoughts regarding how it could possibly change and what that would mean for local SEO.

More searches while driving.

“Watching my children search YouTube — they only know voice search. As a result I envision voice search from smart phones to grab more and more local searches as adoption increases and people search while driving.” — Shawn Schulze of HomeArea.com

Formation of partnerships.

“I see Alexa and similar services partnering with more data sources, which will then focus local SEO efforts onto the optimization of whatever sources they are pulling information from. Local SEO will never disappear. Instead it will just advance as how consumers perform information searches change.” — Christopher Dziak, CEO of Pure Nootropics

More on-demand focused.

“The next advancement in voice search will be services on-demand — booking hair appointments, scheduling a doctor’s visit, reserving a table at dinner. Local businesses will need to be prepared technologically to be able to not only book these appointments but also make sure they’re easy to find.“ — Sean Christman, Founder of Slamdot

Google Duplex will lead the way.

“ComScore predicts that 50% of all online searches will be voice searches by 2020. The recently unveiled Google Duplex assistant carries out “real-world” tasks over the phone, like booking a consultation with a lawyer. Local businesses should focus on getting more rich snippets in the search results.” — Joseph W. Belluck of Belluck & Fox, LLP

Amazon partnerships.

“I think we will see more companies partner with Amazon to integrate voice search and also tie into Amazon’s massive data resources. Just like Google is the online source of data and info, Amazon is fully controlling the voice market. There are endless possibilities.” — Tom Munroe, CEO of RugStudio

Answer customers’ questions.

“Being able to tell Alexa what to do would be awesome when it comes to local SEO. But being able to have Alexa answer your target customer bases questions in real time would provide an edge that most can only dream of.” — Marc Webb, Founder of Real PDL Help

It will change grocery shopping.

“I think we are going to be able to order groceries directly from Alexa. You can already add items to your Amazon account via voice, and with Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods I think they are going to get heavy into home grocery delivery. Alexa will make it an effortless process.” — Ari Evans of AAA Handbags

Order integration.

“I think we will see it integrated with ordering. For example, I think customers will be able to place reservations at their favorite restaurants all by voice, as well as order a pizza from their local spot. Eventually local SEO will be entirely voice search focused.” — Andrew Tran, Founder of Therapy

Search results will become more relevant.

“Optimization of search engines with a focus on the mobile experience. Increasing the ability to use keyword search to produce up to date local results immediately. What that means is as business leaders we need to ensure our businesses are relevant and searchable.” — Shawn Freeman, Founder and CEO of TWT Group

More navigation-based searches.

“With voice search integrated with navigation I think there will be a huge push to optimize for location based searches while driving. Restaurants, gas stations, etc. They all have customers passing by their locations by the second. As voice search is more widely used the opportunity will increase.” — Edward Doskey of Doskey Law, P.L.C.

Yelp and Google reviews will become more important.

“I think reviews from places like Yelp and Google are going to play into the results even more. Nobody wants to ask a question and be provided with a poor choice. This is going to cause businesses to have to get creative in order to get as many strong reviews as possible.” — Jim Epton of Dom Huga Ltd

Used more by local information seekers.

“It seems to me as though it was more meant for local search options when you are on the go than if you were doing research for a blog article to write. I think people will use it more for local information because of its convenience and need for simpler information immediately.” — Ben Walker, Founder of Transcription Outsourcing, LLC

Better voice capabilities from your car.

“Better voice search in your car. Navigation has had a lot of focus, but we will begin to be more conversational about business hours, choosing which business to visit, etc. The systems should get easier to use.” — Matthew Kolb of All High Schools

 

Annika Bansal Successful Entrepreneur Says It’s All About Networking

Annika Bansal and her roommate Matt Segal are dedicated outdoors people. They enjoy hiking, canoeing, and especially rock climbing. One thing they noticed when out in the wild was how difficult it was to find an instant coffee to start their strenuous day that tasted any good. On an impulse, Bansal quit her safe and secure job in 2016 to find a way to make good instant coffee available for the outdoor and camping community.

Using one-hundred percent Arabica beans, she and Segal eventually discovered an instant blend that traveled well and tasted great. They began selling it at sporting goods stores in Ziploc bags. Then the huge sports retailer REI came calling, wanting the instant coffee to sell in all their stores.

Annika says that she thought their company, Alpine Start, was not yet big enough to undertake such a project. She asked REI if they couldn’t start with a target area with just a few stores, as a test run. REI replied it had to be all of their stores or nothing.

So Bansal started networking with coffee distributors, manufacturers, and packaging experts until she was able to offer REI exactly what they wanted.

Her advice to other entrepreneurs is simple:  When opportunity finally comes, get out and network instead of sitting in front of a computer screen all day.

 

5 Smart Ways to Improve Your Financial Health

The final quarter for 2018 is drawing near and so now would be a good time to evaluate your finances. Financial wellbeing is a lot like good health. When you have vibrant health, you have the physical and mental capacity you need to live your life to the fullest. In the same way, when you are financially stable, you have the resources you have better quality of life and the freedom to live life in your own terms.

 

No one is ever too young or too old to start working on their finances. If you are feeling motivated, here are 5 things you can do to become better at managing your personal wealth.

 

Change Your Perspective

 

Being financially healthy isn’t just about saving or earning enough money to buy that new signature bag you’ve been lusting after for months. A lot of it has to do with your attitude towards money. In other words, how you view money and what your definition of financial wellbeing will affect all areas of your financial health. It might be a good idea to spend time evaluating what financial success really means to you if you haven’t done it already.

 

One simple exercise would be to take a sheet of paper and list down the problematic views you have about spending that you want to change. In another column, right down what steps you can take to change those views. In another sheet of paper, write down your priorities and evaluate how far along you are in fulfilling those priorities. The goal is to identify what attitudes you can improve and what needs to be eliminated.

 

Be Strategic With Your Buying Habits

 

Today’s world is becoming increasingly consumeristic. When you browse through social media, you’ll be bombarded by subtle and not-so-subtle advertisements that will pressure you to buy more, more, more. If you want to improve your financial status and have better peace of mind then you will have to strive hard to become a conscious buyer and not succumb into this materialistic mentality. One way to do this would be to have a solid financial plan in place so you’ll know how much you actually earn and how much you spend. However, a financial plan isn’t just enough, you’ll also need to be strategic with how you can follow the plan.

 

One strategy would be to avoid the mall and shopping websites unless you really have something to buy. Shopping centers and websites are designed to lure potential customers and spend their money so if you have trouble resisting the urge to shop then it’s best that you avoid window shopping. Lastly, if you go shopping make sure you make a shopping list and stick to it. Avoid lingering in areas that don’t sell the stuff you are looking for so you don’t end up buying things you don’t need.

 

Set Small but Achievable Goals

 

It is necessary to set big financial goals but it is also very important to set smaller objectives that you can more easily achieve. The big goals can sometimes feel overwhelming so having smaller objectives can help keep you motivated and focused. These smaller goals could also serve as stepping stones to help you unlock your bigger goals. For instance, if your major financial goal is to retire comfortably and have enough money to travel the world by the time you hit 60, then you can break down this plan into smaller steps such as starting a retirement fund and saving 20% of your salary every month for the next 30 years.

 

Remember to keep your small goals specific so they are easier to track and measure. Also, make sure they are realistic for you and your current financial state.

 

Invest Your Money

 

Setting up a savings account isn’t just the only way to secure a healthy financial future. Another effective strategy would be to invest your money into something productive. The downside of just putting your money into a bank account is that it might not be able to keep up with inflation. Unlike a savings account, investing has a bigger chance of giving you higher returns.

 

There are plenty of possible ways that you can invest your money. You can put it in stocks or if you are feeling adventurous you could help fund a startup business like one that sells ultra clean shampoo, just in time for the cannabis boom in the United States. To pick the right investment, you will have to examine what your risk tolerance is and how much money you are also willing to invest.

 

If you decide to invest in a business, make sure you read the news and current events so you’ll have a good idea of the present business climate and what industries are worth venturing into.

 

Identify Recurring Expenses You Don’t Need

 

You could save a significant amount of money by eliminating unnecessary expenses. Sometimes these don’t come in big chunks off of your paycheck. In some cases they can just be small yet frequently recurring expenses like that artisanal coffee you drink every morning or services included in your gym membership that you don’t really use. Here’s a simple yet effective exercise you can do:

 

  1. Evaluate the previous month’s spending by checking your credit card bill or make a list of the expenses you recently made. Identify which of these are recurring expenses.
  2. In a second column, write down whether you should keep, eliminate or swap these expenses. Your list might turn up things like cable subscription, your phone’s mobile data plan, snacks and groceries.
  3. Make sure the expenses you decide to keep are really important and eliminate the ones that you don’t really use.
  4. Last but not the least, for items that you marked as “swap,” try to find alternative products or services that are cheaper but will give you similar value.

 

Remember that it is never too late to find ways to improve your financial health. By making just the right changes you can significantly alter your financial outlook and start building the life that you want.  

 

The Untold Story of Nenad Korof- Immigrant Hustle, Cryptocurrency, Business And A Whole Lotta’ Millions

Nenad “Neno” Korof is a Serbian-Canadian serial entrepreneur, trader, mentor, philanthropist, angel investor. Earning the nickname “Money With Neno” from his homerun profitable trades and money- Nenad shows that despite the luxury purchases, Lamborghini and penthouse- he still remains as humble and down to earth. Having launched Advance Cryto Academy– The #1 Online Platform in North America for Crypto and Forex Trading with 16,000 members till date and increasing more each day-he discusses the tough times and the successes that got him to where he is today.

It hasn’t been an easy ride for him. The son of immigrant parents with his mother working during the night while his father started a construction/renovation business due to the fact the family left during a war in 1992- Nenad understood the value of hard work and money at an early age. Having big dreams at an early age, he would help his father out at his shop for free and that exposed him to the lavish mansions and lifestyle of the uber rich- from 20-30,000 sqft mansions to gold plated ceilings and architecture-he was amazed by this lifestyle and aspired to achieve that.

During high school, while not being the most popular- he was not interested in the menial gossip and small talk. He attended college but dropped out after 2 months realizing the traditional education system was not for him; plus, he states “My professors don’t have the lifestyle that I have so why should I listen to them? If you have results and can teach me, I am open to listening” To discover how to be rich, he came across the books “Rich Dad Poor Dad” and Think and Grow Rich which opened up his mind to the mindset of the wealthy.

At the age of 19- he became the youngest person in the head office of a company to generate $2.2 million in revenue and Nenad’s take home pay? $50,000 after taxes. He still continued to help his parents out with mortgage payments and other bills but he realized that all his income was going to cover his expenses and he wasn’t able to save money. He knew that there had to be a better way than this. He was introduced to network marketing and with his 1st company he experienced minimal success and later joined another one where he saw the power of residual income and the power of leveraging- he was earning $1,000/month at the time from this opportunity but it still wasn’t enough to live the life he desired.

One day while at work, he asked himself “Do I want to be staring at a screen for the next 50 years of my life and be miserable?”

Being an innate risk taker Nenad states “I am willing to die for my dreams. I would rather take a chance and fail in the process vs dying and not taking a chance at all”

One day while scrolling through Instagram, he came across a rich person and decided to message him asking about his profession. The person invited Nenad for a meeting and he was introduced to the world of Forex Trading.

He started trading but was unsuccessful for the first 3 years and after a string of personal and legal problems which led him to being $50K in debt, he decided to take a break from Forex and MLM and open a brick and mortar business.

His first venture was a landscaping business and even though he was making money- he didn’t like the idea of working long hours and trading time for money so he moved onto opening a shisha lounge. While that was profitable, the long hours and monotonous work flow dissuaded him from continuing the business- in addition problems with the landlord made operating the establishment difficult and not enjoyable so he decided to close it.

He had to figure out how to trade forex. He understood the potential of it because if there were already people that were succeeding and making millions so there was no reason why he couldn’t replicate it. One day, he had an “aha” moment and understood the main principle of trading:

“90% of trading is psychology and 10% is analytics”

That’s when Nenad’s growth accelerated from his first big month of $12K to finally clearing millions. He reflects on what he had told himself that by the age of 23- he wanted a million dollars and a super car. 1 week before the age of 23, he purchased a gold Lamborghini.

People started reaching out to asking about his profession and how they can achieve success like he did. He partnered with a Forex MLM company to launch their services in Canada and help with the expansion. Nenad, later launched a service called CPS(Copy Profit Share) where students can copy his trades in real time and be profitable while allowing people the opportunity to earn residual income for having people sign up their friends and people that were looking for financial freedom.

In early 2017, having discovered BTC and being approached by his lawyer and friend- Nenad decided to dive deep in the backend and the technical side of bitcoin and blockchain. He understood its potential and a friend introduced him to a business associate who turned $6,000-$32M through the power of trading cryptocurrencies. In 9 months, Nenad earned his first million trading cryptocurrencies and now people seek council from him and his star students on master the crypto markets which also led him to start Advanced Crypto Academy to allow people to learn the psychology and analytics behind the financial markets- whether that be crypto or forex.

He explains his vision and grant ambition to be a billionaire by 30 and become a motivational thought leader and teach people psychology and program their minds for greatness. He believes, if you want it bad enough and apply the knowledge- you can really get it. Nenad discusses that he wants to start working on exciting projects in innovating technologies and solve the world’s 2 biggest problems: war and hunger. He goes on to mention that all of the world problems stems from 2 things- social norms and power. With great power comes great responsibility but the reality is people misuse the power instead of using it for the greater good of humanity.

5 Rewarding Jobs for People Who Want to Help Others

No matter how much you love your job, work can be a challenge. However, if you’re working towards something grander and nobler than just padding your bank account, it makes it infinitely easier to trek to work each day.

When you’re deciding on your next career, consider one of these jobs that are all about helping people.

  1. Personal Injury Attorney

You might have mixed feelings when you hear about personal injury attorneys, but when it comes down to it, they’re there to help. If you’ve been injured in a car accident caused by someone else, and the at-fault party refuses to cover the damages and medical expenses, you’ll be glad you have an attorney to get you adequate compensation.

Auto accident lawyers are like knights in shining armor for people who have been injured and need support. You can help them find the evidence they need and file a court case so that they can get their lives back to as close to normal as possible. 

Medical bills must be paid, and your client needs a working car to get around. In some cases, the injury can be so bad that your client is unable to work. If someone has taken the right to free mobility away from your client in an accident, helping them sue for compensation can be the best course of action.

Personal injury attorneys live a comfortable lifestyle. Their hours are relatively regular, and they work on a commission basis. That means that if you want a good income, you have to win a lot of cases. That being said, the average personal injury attorney makes between $73,000 and $164,000 per year. You can help a lot of people on a salary like that.

  1. Cancer Researcher

If you’ve never given up hope that there’s a cure for cancer and you’re constantly looking up facts about lung cancer, breast cancer, leukemia, or any other carcinoma, a job in cancer research is probably the best place for you.

Cancer researchers work in teams to identify causes of cancer and develop strategies to diagnose, treat, prevent, and even cure it. You’ll collect and generate countless pages of research through studies and experimentation.

You can choose the specialty and area you’d like to work in. If you prefer experimenting and creating your own research, you’ll want to look into a lab job. If researching facts and making connections on the studies of others is more your thing, search for a desk job.

Cancer researchers are medical scientists, and such occupations require extensive education. You can get started in the field with a master’s degree, but most major research facilities prefer a doctorate of medicine degree (M.D.) and adequate licensure.

Having an M.D. also gives you more freedom to research in every capacity. If your research is successful, you’ll eventually move to clinical trials on human patients, but you won’t be able to be a direct part of the process if you’re not a doctor.

The median salary for cancer researchers is good at $82,000. There’s also a rapid growth projection, so it shouldn’t be difficult to find a job once you finish your education.

  1. Nurse

One of the oldest and noblest professions for people who want to help others is nursing. A nurse assists doctors in performing treatments, educating patients, and doing lab testing. Nursing is the largest health occupation in the United States, and it’s in constant demand.

As a nurse, you’ll have the opportunity to work in a hospital, clinic, or private practice. Hospital nurses tend to live a more fast-paced lifestyle as they rush between patients or pull shifts in the emergency room. They may also work odd hours, since hospitals must be staffed 24/7.

If you prefer a slower pace, working in a private practice or clinic is best. You’ll work more regular hours and won’t have to pull night shifts. You’ll also work more closely with doctors in these practices.

Nurses should be interested in helping people. They spend more time with patients than doctors do, and they can help to cushion the blow of bad news and make patients feel better when dealing with pain or sickness.

Currently, there’s a nursing shortage in the United States, which means that you won’t have any problem getting a job as a nurse. Baby boomers make up a large population of older nurses, and they’re retiring. That leave a lot of openings for freshly educated nurses to take their place.

To become a nurse, you’ll need formal education. You can start with a certificate program to get your CNA, but it’s more beneficial to at least get an associate degree in nursing (ADN). After getting an associate or bachelor’s degree, you can take a test to become a registered nurse, which raises your pay outlook significantly.

Pay varies by state, but the average salary for a registered nurse is $68,000. That’s above average for a two-year degree, and if you get a bachelor’s degree or beyond, you qualify for more pay.

  1. HVAC Contractor

Imagine that your AC has just gone out and it’s 90 degrees outside with 90 percent humidity. You have fans running, but it just doesn’t cut it. Can you imagine anything more welcome in this situation than an HVAC contractor coming to fix your air conditioning?

An HVAC contractor specializes in installing, maintaining, and repairing all things related to ventilation, air conditioning, boilers, furnaces, heat pumps, and refrigeration systems. They inspect, clean, maintain, and repair HVAC systems in both residential and commercial buildings.  

An HVAC contractor might also help clients decide on the best HVAC system and equipment for their needs. Most people know very little about heating and cooling, so your job as a technician will be to educate them and help them make a great choice.

Helping people repair things they can’t fix themselves is a great profession, and it pays close to $30 per hour. You may also be eligible for commission on sales and repairs, offering excellent growth opportunities.

  1. Dietician or Nutritionist

The obesity epidemic is a plague, and dieticians and nutritionists are out to cure it. Along with helping people lose weight through the right foods, they promote health through healthy eating tips and lifestyle changes.

Nutritionists often work with those who have long-term diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, or high blood pressure. They coach patients on what to eat to avoid exacerbating their illness. They may also help patients eat right when recovering from an injury.

As a dietician, you’ll have the opportunity to work in a variety of settings including cafeterias, hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and private practices. You’ll meet with a variety of clients and work alongside them in an often-difficult lifestyle transition, so good people skills are a must.

A nutritionist needs at least a bachelor’s degree to get into the field, but you can seek a master’s or doctorate if you choose. The median salary is about $60,000, and it’s in very high demand. The growth rate for the dietician occupation is much faster than average, so getting a job should be a cinch.

There’s nothing more gratifying than helping people in your work. It takes the edge off of bad days and helps you stay positive. Whether you’re looking for a career change or getting started in your adult career, consider these career opportunities which provide rewards far beyond the typical paycheck.

Why Voice Search Should be a Top SEO Priority

Internet users, until now, used to simply type anything that they needed to find through the search engine bar. These words are described as keywords or search phrases. Usually, these keywords are not types in complete sentences. Take, for example, the search ‘Italian restaurant NYC’ rather than typing in ‘I need an Italian restaurant in NYC’.

The keyword basically is an Italian restaurant NYC which in itself does not make complete sense. Google is intelligent — it takes the gist of it and then provides users with results that closely relate to the search.

Since speaking into a phone is much easier than typing, people are now turning to voice search to find information, especially local information. For example, saying ‘I need an Italian restaurant in NYC’ will bring up local options. You should focus on voice search, as its popularity is greatly increasing.

What is SEO today?

SEO is the practice of performing on-site and off-site strategies designed to help rank for specific keywords and search phrases. Take for example the website of any Italian restaurant in NYC — they would show up high in the results when someone searched for ‘Italian restaurant NYC’ on Google.

“It’s important to also understand that SEO involves providing the visitor with a pleasant experience,” says Darryl Howard of Boca Raton Med Spa. “You need content on your website that visitors can engage with, and you need your website to be mobile-friendly, allowing all visitors, regardless of their browsing device, to navigate effortlessly.”

SEO has advanced over the years, and it’s really important to focus on the consumer, and now with voice search becoming more important because of its convenience, it’s time to focus on this component.

How does voice search impact SEO?

It is no secret that voice search will revolutionize the way that content will be written. Since most people will now be speaking more, rather than typing, keyword phrases are going to be longer. Take for example, ‘I need an Italian restaurant in NYC’ — it is exactly the content that will be required to optimize for, rather than just targeting ‘Italian restaurant NYC’.

“Content quality has become more of a focus over the years,” says Dana VanDeCar, COO of Optimally Organic. “Back in the day, content and keywords were targeted that wasn’t natural, because the language types into a search bar was brief and not human-level. Now, with voice, searches are much more detailed.”

Publishing quality content that is focused around the user is always the best practice, and now websites with high authority are going to benefit even more. Voice searches will begin to trigger the content that was written naturally, as it now relates more to the type of searches that come via voice.

Keyword phrases are now more specific.

With the help of voice search, keyword phrases are going to become more specific. People are likely to speak specific details when they search for something by voice. Take, for example, a person may say ‘I need an Italian restaurant in NYC with a cozy atmosphere and seafood’.

The websites that have content which identifies them as Italian restaurants in NYC which particularly serve seafood having a cozy atmosphere will actually be ranked much higher and shown in the results. “In-depth content is now going to benefit websites even more, and those that adapted to long-form content previously are going to benefit greatly,” suggests Luqman Khan, Founder of Wireloo, a websites that just announced the best fitness tracking watch.

It’s not if — it’s when.

Content needs to include clear and short statements. SEO will soon be based on what people would say when they are searching for a particular thing by voice. “Content needs to cater to what people actually say when they are trying to find something online,” says Jake Braun of ChopperExchange, a website that features tips to sell your Harley.

This is not something that may happen or that some experts are predicting. If you look at any of the recent mobile-usage surveys, you will see that mobile use is climbing and voice search is being used more in everyday lives, thanks in part to devices like Amazon Alexa.

O’Rourke Closing Gap on Incumbent Ted Cruz

Beto O’Rourke, despite a lack of name recognition, is catching up to Ted Cruz in the polls. Cruz was leading with a 15-18 percent majority in the beginning of this year, depending on the source. Polls currently stand at Cruz with 47 percent and O’Rourke with 35, a much thinner margin in a short period of time. The polled voters show that Cruz is seen lately in an unfavorable light, and to have a self-seeking agenda; however, many Texans claim to not know enough about O’Rourke to have an opinion of him so far. Those who do have an opinion cite his charisma and down to earth platform as reasons for his rising numbers.

Affiliation with End Citizens United

End Citizens United is a grassroots campaign originally based to overturn Citizens United and reduce the amount of influence money has on election and politics in general. O’Rourke’s campaign involves only his own strategies, in a utilitarian and no-frills approach to gaining ground for this year’s election. Also relying primarily on himself and the needs of the voters, O’Rourke has not only decided against utilizing political and campaign consultants, and pollsters, he has also rejected any money from Political Acton Committees. Currently, where 96% of voters see the use of money as a way to corrupt a campaign or politician, O’Rourke’s refusal of any money towards his campaign is seen as a positive step towards putting the needs of the voters above those of companies and businesses.

Endorsement by League of Conservative Voters

While the voice of environmental concerns has grown over the years, politicians of the GOP have still found ways to set many of these issues aside in favor of what they depict as more pressing ones. Voters all over are pushing to have these concerns centralized in law making, thus the beginning of the League of Conservative Voters. The LCV pushes to ensure that matters concerning the environment become priorities at every level of government, and that politicians are held accountable for their decisions in this capacity.

The League of Conservative Voters Action Fund has endorsed Beto O’Rourke for his stances on conservation and climate change issues. As these topics become more centralized, endorsements of groups such as the LCV become more important to campaigning politics. This does not bode well for incumbent Cruz, as the LCV has shown disdain for his lack of concern over environmental issues in the past.

A Platform Texans can Relate to

Speaking in general of O’Rourke’s stances on the issues, voters seem to identify with his ideas and priorities. Some describe his campaigning methods as “old school,” particularly in regards to the amount of time he spends traveling. He has now visited every single county in Texas, all 254 of them, even ones such as Cooke County that hasn’t voted a Democrat into office in decades.

When it comes to the issues that the average voter looks at, Beto O’Rourke speaks to them on jobs, healthcare, and immigration as chief areas of concentration. Speaking to every county in Texas, O’Rourke assures them that every citizen who wants a job will be able to get that job, along with the necessary education needed to succeed. He displays his beliefs on the importance of healthcare, citing the need for every citizen to have healthcare in order to become and stay healthy. His stance on immigration displays his belief that every issue should reflect the country’s values, welcoming immigrants and thanking them for what they have done for our country, along with calling to end walls, raids, and overall hostility.

O’Rourke’s plans, if making it to overturn Cruz’s seat in the typically red state, simply highlight his goals to end divisive and contentious actions in politics, calling to simply bring voters together and better the nation by bettering their lives.

Workplace Efficiency Tips for SMEs

If you thought managing SMEs was going to be an easy task, then you might be experiencing some challenges! Small and Medium-sized businesses are always caught between acquiring new customers and delivering quality services to the existing customers. Obviously, this is one of the trickiest balances to strike. Most of these businesses find themselves caught on one side of the game; which implies losing on the other.

Remember, as an entrepreneur, you also have employees under you who need to keep your business’ vision alive and running. This means that you have to work hard to make them see your vision; which of course goes hand in hand with some sort of motivation to ensure that they deliver as expected. Quite a daunting task?

No worries. Here are a few tips to ensure efficiency at the workplace with a bias to SMEs:

Empower Your Workforce

When you lead a team of employees, you probably want the best of them. Offering them incentives or rewards for their hard work would work best to ensure that they remain motivated and focused on achieving the set goals.

No employee likes to be constantly told what to do—they need the space to make independent decisions (of course you’ll still make the final decision as the top management) and exercise their creativity. Empowering your workforce by acknowledging their potential not only leads to high-efficiency levels (with regard to work output) but also greatly contributes to the overall growth of your business.

Engage Your Employees

Employee engagement is one of the most effective ways to ensure high productivity levels. This entails listening to and addressing their concerns, discussing the business’ progress as a team (after all they contribute to your business’ success), and most importantly engaging them in the decision-making process. By doing all these, you make them feel part of the business which is crucial in ensuring an efficient work environment.

Having an open communication system will also aid a one on one interaction with your team thus enhancing their overall productivity.  

Consider Using Web Forms

With the advanced technology systems, most businesses are going online. It’s now a necessity to have an online platform even if you’re operating a physical store. Why? Most users seek for products online which also means that they prefer online assistance (when it comes to the use of these products) as it’s the fastest and most reliable way to get more information on the products in question.

Web forms will not only save you time but also boost your users’ confidence because they will receive prompt services from you. In addition, it will make your employees more efficient and on the task of providing excellent customer service and alleviate them from answering repetitive phone calls from customers.

The best thing about web forms? You can get started with free templates from EmailMeForm right away and embed them in your website in just a few mere minutes.

Offer Refreshments as a Reward

It may seem weird. But it’s probably one of the most effective ways to get your employees on toes and motivated to tackle the day’s work. Ensure you offer them healthy snacks, foods, and drinks as this will leave them feeling rejuvenated all the time and most importantly, it will greatly enhance time management which is usually a challenge with regard to outside feeding.

Create an efficient work environment (for your employees) by offering them easy access to refreshment products.

Conclusion

Ensuring an efficient workplace isn’t an easy task, but with the right measures in place—it’s achievable. Implementation of the above tips will motivate your employees; thus, it will aid the creation of an efficient work environment. However, you should bear in mind that it’s a gradual process and hence requires patience.

Author Bio: Deborah Tayloe is a freelance copywriter and frequent contributor to EmailMeForm. She has over 25 years of experience in marketing and sales management. She’s a Pennsylvania native who currently lives in North Carolina. When she’s not blogging, she’s probably relaxing in her garden.

How Do You Run Executive Background Checks?

Every year in the United States, businesses employ new executives as a way to expand and enhance leadership from the top down. However, how well do companies screen executives before they are hired? According to one study, at least 45 precent of businesses fail to screen executives before they are hired. In addition, 31 precent of these businesses lack due diligence or don’t perform any kind of screening before hiring an executive.

The Importance of Executive Background Checks

The job market is competitive, which causes many individuals to lie about their degrees, fabricate employment history, and even try to hide past crimes to gain employment. If a business owner or hiring manager only assumes an executive candidate is truthful, they are putting their company at risk. When an individual is hired for an executive position and isn’t truthful about his or her skills, education, and employment history, the lack of skills and experience could cost a company thousands of dollars, and it could also hurt the company’s potential to do business with other companies and vendors.

High-up executives have been known to lie on their resumes. For instance, David Edmondson, former CEO of RadioShack, was untruthful on his resume and stated that he had a four-year college degree. In addition, Kenneth Lonchar, a former executive with Veritas Software Corp., lied about having his MBA from Stanford University in 1997, and Scott Thompson of Yahoo lied about going to school at Stonehill College. Kenneth Lonchar caused Veritas Software Corp. to lose an estimated 15 percent of its stock because of his lies.

Although the scandals with the aforementioned individuals occurred many years ago, there are many instances of this taking place in today’s workforce. Moreover, the influence of social media often leads to public relations catastrophes for companies that have hired deceptive executives.

What is Involved in an Executive Background Check?

When you administer an executive background check for a potential executive, it will involve a different process for screening other employees. As written on the Corporate Resolutions website, executive employees have a significant amount of power, which means their executive background check should be more in-depth and robust. This may include using every legal option offered to protect the reputation and success of the business.

Most experts that offer background checks, such as the team at Corporate Resolutions, will begin the process by verifying basic information. After his or her basic information has been verified, employment verification is the next step in an executive background check. Not only will an executive background check involve validity, it will also ensure the dates of employment are accurate. In addition, it is also important to verify advanced degrees, certifications, transcriptions, or educational awards that are on an executive candidate’s resume. Even if is seems unnecessary to delve into this information, any red flags could let an employer know there may be serious problems deeper into the screening process.

The next step in an executive background check is screening for criminal records. Executives have a position of authority, which means it is vital that they are trustworthy. Many executive background checks will begin this step with civil checks, county court checks, as well as state criminal record checks. In addition, potential executives will also be screened for federal and national criminal records.

After this step is complete, an executive will have his or her credit checked to meet FCRA requirements. Although minor issues in credit are not usually a problem when hiring executives, any notifications of bank fraud, unpaid taxes, liens, or cashing bad checks is another red flag the that candidate may not be trustworthy. In addition, an executive background check will also screen potential executives for money theft from past employers or evidence of mishandling money.

Top-level executives may also be subject to reference verification. This is to ensure that reference letters haven’t been falsely enhanced or made up by a friend or college as a favor. A reference verification can ensure that the candidate is truthful, and it is also a way to verify the candidate’s past executive performance.

Business owners and hiring managers should always enlist the help of a business that offers executive background checks, such as Corporate Resolutions, to make certain that the right candidate is selected for the position.

4 Reasons An Entrepreneur Should Hire A Life Coach

The day you decide to launch a business and tackle the journey of becoming an entrepreneur can be filled with lots of excitement. Many individuals who venture down this path do so because they no longer want to have to answer to a boss and they want to see their ideas come to fruition. Yet most who are overwhelmed with enthusiasm don’t recognize all of the challenges and responsibility that come with this choice.

Launching and running a business is a lot of work. Because you will need to overcome many obstacles and adversity, the path you are on is going to force you to grow and become a better version of yourself. This is why it can be very beneficial to hire a life coach.

A life coach is someone who can help you stay focused, remain organized, and can support you when many tough decisions come your way. Here are four more reasons for having a coach on your side:

1. Create A Balanced Life

All too often, when people jump down the rabbit hole of becoming an entrepreneur they find that their life gets out of balance. When this happens, it is quite easy to become unhappy and depressed.

While working twelve hour days can be common, it’s important to keep your life in balance so that you don’t feel bitter or resentful towards your dream. A life coach is someone who can help keep you honest when they see that you may be out of balance.

2. Less Stress & Anxiety

Having someone who can support you when things get hard is essential so that you don’t feel stressed out all the time. Your coach is going to provide you time every week where you can pause and reflect on what is happening right now in your life.

During this time, not only can you vent so that it does not stay bottled up inside, your coach will be able to help you put it into perspective so that you can get back to the task at hand and feel better about it helping to relieve any stress or anxiety it may have brought on.

3. Overcome Fears

Running your own business is going to challenge you so much that it will literally bring up every fear you have about yourself. When this happens, it can be very helpful to have someone to work with your through them so that they don’t get the best of you.

4. Be More Productive

Becoming successful as an entrepreneur is all about making the most of your time. From when you get up until you go to sleep you are going to need to squeeze out high productivity from each minute.

Working with a life coach will help you organize your time in a way to ensure that you are being as productive as humanly possible.