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Can’t switch off after work? Restless? Anxious?

Can’t switch off after work? Restless? Anxious? Thoughts endlessly going round your mind? Heart racing? Grumpy with your family for no particular reason? Maybe it is time to relax!

1. Make Time

Relaxation may seem like an indulgence, almost a taboo in our fast-paced 24/7 society when in reality it should be part of a healthy lifestyle. Relaxation is just as important as eating healthily, exercising regularly and getting enough sleep, especially when you are running a business as well as trying to have a family and social life. So do pencil in some time for relaxation and keep that time free from commitments.

2. Get Physical

When we are under pressure, our body produces stress hormones, mainly adrenaline, and cortisol. Stress hormones are designed to help you deal with danger by running away or fighting. That is why physical activity is the best way to get rid of them and feel more at ease again. It does not really matter what you do: Walking, running, cycling, swimming, yoga, playing football or tennis, any exercise has a relaxing effect.

3. Get Out

If exercise is beneficial, then exercising or simply going for a leisurely walk outside is even better. Spending time in a natural environment can lift the mood and clear the mind, a walk before an exam can help recall learned material. It does not have to be the great outdoors, even small natural spaces in urban settings can increase happiness.

4. Be Creative

Whether it is composing or carpentry, painting or playing the piano, knitting or writing poetry, being creative has a relaxing effect. This is probably because you have to concentrate on what you are doing and because it feels good to be absorbed in an activity you are enjoying.

5. Learn Relaxation Techniques

The ultimate way to relax must be to do nothing. Some people may find this quite difficult. This is where relaxation techniques come in. Relaxation techniques are routines, which induce a relaxed state of mind. The main ones are meditation, breathing techniques, progressive muscle relaxation, autogenic training and mindfulness exercises.

By SME
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Attracting Customers

Attracting customers is one of the top challenges for startup businesses, especially if you do not have any marketing background yourself. However, the principles of marketing are common sense and can get you a long way without excessive expenditure.

1. Know Yourself

Time spent on working out what makes your product or service special (its unique selling proposition) is time well spent because it helps you differentiate yourself from the competition. Clarifying your mission and values will provide you with a framework for positioning your business.

2. Know your Customers

Who is supposed to buy your product or service? Be clear about who you want to sell to. Even if your service or product theoretically could be of interest to almost everybody, pick a customer segment and start marketing to it. Once you have decided on a market segment, it will be easier to decide how to reach potential customers and which channels to focus on.

3. Set a Budget

Making a marketing plan and allocating a fixed budget can help you keep an eye on costs. It is easy to overspend; having a budget will help you focus your mind and your marketing activities. Beware of advertising scams: Unscrupulous fraudsters systematically target new businesses. If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t any good at all. Don’t commit to anything over the telephone, and don’t be shy to say “no thank you”.

4. Care for Contacts

Referrals and word-of-mouth are a fantastic way to get new customers. Think about who you know who could help endorse your business. Ask for testimonials, referrals, and recommendations.

5. Be Visible

A website is a must for any new business, but it can be simple and inexpensive. The three most important elements are your contact details, a compelling offer, and an attractive design. The same applies to any other promotional material such as leaflets, flyers, and posters.

By SME
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Boom. Foursquare for the win.

After Years of Challenges, Foursquare Has Found its Purpose -- and Profits

Foursquare had always thought of itself as an app for consumers, but this treasure trove suggested something else to Glueck: The company needed to think of itself as a location data company. Enormous companies like Yahoo and Pinterest were using it a billion times a year; for example, when you pin a photo in Pinterest and tag its location, that’s using Foursquare’s data.

In mid-2014, it split its consumer apps in two -- Swarm became the check-in app, and Foursquare City Guide recommended activities based on user interests. Three of the top five hedge funds are using Foursquare data to give them an investing edge. More than one million users have agreed to leave location sharing on all the time so Foursquare can track and analyze their movements; through a partnership with Nielsen, that data is then being connected to consumers' purchasing data, so that marketers can understand how ads people see directly relate to purchases they make. Glueck sought inspiration for how to evolve the company’s culture, and referred to Good to Great, a book by Jim Collins about how 11 companies shook off mediocrity to become market leaders. Foursquare’s core as a data company was always there, just waiting for the right technology to make it possible. Glueck had been making the rounds for less than a year, seeding the market with all kinds of predictions based on his company’s data -- how many new iPhones Apple would sell, or how well McDonald’s all-day breakfast launch was going. Foursquare had reinvented itself as a location intelligence company for business, but it was in the painstaking process of shaking off its image as a forgotten consumer app.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Keep on keeping on

"It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop." - Confucius

Keep on keeping on! Go the distance. It isn’t over until I win. However you want to word it, you keep moving in the direction of your goal. Some goals come easily. Others take weeks, years, even a lifetime (or more). Don’t stop. Don’t let any setback, no matter how trivial or how severe, stop you.

If you find a mountain in your way, go over it or around it. If you find a ravine in your way, build a bridge or climb down & back out. You might not make much forward progress during the time you are surmounting your obstacle, but you are still moving towards the goal.

 

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

What exactly does that ‘R’ in ROI mean?

Defining return on investment is as easy as subtracting dollars spent from net profit. If only it was that simple to measure social media ROI.

Calculating social impact on current and potential customers is kind of like trying to figure out if you’re having any influence on the behavior of your teenagers. You’re pretty sure they know you exist because they’ve liked you at one time or another and you see them around occasionally, but they don’t seem to be hearing you, so you find yourself always looking for new ways to deliver important messages. And just when you’ve given up and don’t expect any change in their behavior, they show up and surprise you—sometimes months or even years later.

In these days of constantly changing platform algorithms and ever-shrinking organic reach, getting a grip on the value of your social media efforts—especially if you’re not paying to play—can be frustrating. A recent Manta survey found that small business owners are evenly split on their willingness to spend dollars to promote their business on social media. And among those who do invest, nearly 60 percent report no return.

Those numbers raise a couple of questions. What exactly does that ‘R’ in ROI mean? Is it relationship? Revenue? Return? How do you define social media ROI? What are the goals you want to measure, and how do you measure them?

Defining the ‘R’

Many people mistake the ‘R’ in ROI for revenue, and return can come in a lot of different forms. I would look at it in terms of what matters to your business, what are you looking to accomplish? Not what do you want social media to do for you, but at the end of the day, what are you hoping to achieve, what does success look like?”

Once you’ve pondered and answered those questions, you can begin to look at social media to achieve goals and measure something that actually matters to your organization. Is your focus on pushing a product or improving a current product? Is it customer service? Is it increased media placement? Is it lead generation? Is it building community and connecting with current customers? Or is it the Holy Grail, acquiring new customers?

Objectives-based returns

Manta’s survey asked small business owners to define their primary goal for using social media. Nearly 37 percent identified acquiring and engaging new customers as their top aim, followed by driving awareness and marketing (17 percent) and gaining lead generations/referrals (15 percent). Only eight percent said building community was paramount.

Those results aren’t surprising, but they are perhaps a bit out of order because content isn’t a linear path to conversion. I actually think social media is better for maintaining or increasing touch points with current customers or people who are already in your circle versus acquiring new customers. Truthfully, especially for small businesses, your next wave of customers is going to come from people who are already connected to your current customers. That’s word-of-mouth 101.

Social media is the digital platform for word-of-mouth marketing. Set your objective, find out which platforms your current customers prefer (ask, research the social media habits of your desired demographic), what they’re talking about, who they’re talking to and why.

A great posture to have is to treat it like a community. The term target audience is used a lot, and to us, it is the wrong term because we think it makes it seem like the brand is onstage and entertaining and sending information out to influence the audience. And it’s more complicated than that with social media. We think the posture should be more like you’re sitting in the audience in the seat next to them, and talking with them and learning from them and creating rapport and inviting them to connect with you and do business with you.

Successful social media engagement that eventually leads to conversion is active, planned and ongoing. Listen and respond rather than sit back and observe passive one-way conversations. Here is a story about a client in growth mode seeking a younger restaurant clientele. His agency suggested adding a platform to their already successful Facebook efforts, and they suspected Twitter was the right choice but did a test to confirm. They ran a Facebook contest and as part of the entry form asked entrants what other platforms they used most often. Twitter was the overwhelming answer, so the next step was a platform search for brand mentions that resulted in a find of hundreds of tweets a week. We basically said, this is like people picking up the phone and calling your customer service and you not picking up the phone.

Measuring return

So you’ve planned, connected and shared your stories—now what? Social ROI calculators are easy to find, but may not account for the metrics necessary to set the stage for your particular social objectives. We suggest tracking a handful of performance metrics, specifically click-through rates (Facebook). And for content, track repins, retweets and shares. Use Web analytics to look at unique visitors from social and their time on your site. The ultimate goal is to have someone else saying this piece of content is so good that I’m going to take the time, and put my social reputation on the line for putting this content in front of my audience.”

Those non-linear conversions that happen because you’ve created a social customer relationship over time aren’t easy to track, but your objective planning will include campaigns—coupons, promo codes, contests that you can follow and measure in dollar-for-dollar return. And then you can account for all three ‘R’s—relationship, return, and revenue.

To learn more about social media marketing and paid social media advertising please contact us to see if it should be a part of your marketing strategy.

By Manta
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

It’s Always Your Fault

Wouldn’t it be great if everything always went smoothly in your business and nothing ever went wrong? But there always is something. A supplier sends you the wrong item. A member of staff orders the wrong item. Your team is fighting amongst themselves. A staff member never turns up on time. Customers walk away without buying anything. The computer system breaks down in your busiest period. Your warehouse gets struck by lightning and burns down.

I’m sure you can think of one hundred other things that can go wrong in your business, and while it is tempting to blame someone else for all the problems (in the last case, God!), in fact, it’s always your fault.

So I suspect they knew they couldn’t (or wouldn’t) compete on price. The letter was just ticking a marketing box. The thing is, they had no points of difference. They are one of the biggest suppliers in the state, so are probably relying on customer inertia combined with higher margins, and so probably won’t do anything until there is a significant erosion of their customer base. And then it will be too late.

What points of difference are you using to defend your prices?

Let’s look at some of the problems listed above.

The supplier has sent you the wrong item. Chances are, this is not the first time it’s happened, it’s just that this time, you had no spares. What process do you have in place to ensure that the supplier checks the item before it leaves their facility? If they refuse to cooperate, why are you still using them? Because they are cheap? If you tolerate this more than once, it’s your fault.

A member of staff orders the wrong item. Do you have a process to check that the correct item is ordered? If you have, has the staff member been properly trained? If they have, do you regularly give your staff structured feedback or have an incentive scheme that encourages quality? If not, it’s your fault. If the staff member won’t follow instructions, why are they still employed? It’s your fault.

Your team is fighting amongst themselves. How long have you tolerated this? Have you sat down with individual team members to isolate the problem? Have you provided team training? Are you allowing this to continue? If so, it’s your fault.

A staff member never turns up on time. How long have you tolerated this? Have they been counseled? Why has there been no improvement? Have you put in place a performance improvement plan with the individual? If not, it’s your fault. If you have, why do they still have a job?

Customers walk away without buying anything. Have staff been trained to engage customers? Have they been given sales training? Are staff following their training? Have you given them incentives? If not, it’s your fault.

The computer system breaks down in your busiest period. Have you engaged an IT firm to ensure that the computer system is properly maintained with regular backups? Do you have a contract with guaranteed uptime performance? Do you have contingencies in place in the event of a failure during critical times? If not, it’s your fault.

Your warehouse gets struck by lightning and burns down. Ok ok, it’s not your fault that your warehouse was struck by lightning, but did you have fire suppression systems in the warehouse? Where they regularly inspected? Did you have adequate insurance? Did you have a contingency plan for such a catastrophe? If not, it’s your fault.

When you point your finger at someone else, there are three pointing back to you. There are two rules for business owners:

1. It’s always your fault.
2. If it’s someone else’s fault, see Rule #1.

No one cares as much about your business as you do. No one else is going to look at all the potential problems and come up with sustainable solutions. If you don’t have the answers, it’s up to you to find someone who does. Otherwise, it’s all your fault.

May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Tips On How To Build A Strong Employee Work Ethic

Looking for employees with strong work ethic? Start by defining what it means to you.

Search “work ethic” on Indeed.com and you’ll get hundreds of thousands of results. Why? Because employers want it. In fact, they want it so much that it’s often listed above education and experience. But guess what? Work ethic doesn’t exist. It’s not a real thing.

Work Ethic is a Belief

Don’t believe it? Ask Siri or Cortana or Google Now to define work ethic. You’ll hear something like: “The principle that hard work is intrinsically virtuous or worthy of reward.” Oh. Work ethic is a principle. And a principle is a belief, an idea. It’s a kind of general rule—which is nice to know and high-level and all, but you can’t hire a principle and expect it to sweep under the counter before it goes home at night.

A recent Manta survey asked small business owners to identify the most difficult trait to find when hiring and 48 percent of respondents noted ‘a strong work ethic.’ But it’s likely that this four-word phrase meant something unique to each of them.

Work Ethic is Assumed

Most of us assume that everyone shares our definition of work ethic. Not so, what business owners and hiring managers mean when they list work ethic as a must-have hiring trait is, that they want someone who works like them and is wired like them. Most people who are business owners or managers rose through the ranks because of their work ethic. You know, they showed up for work on time, they did what they were told, they gave their best, they respected the rules. They played the game.

You may be nodding your head in agreement right now because that is what most people mean when they say they want to hire a strong work ethic—they want a person who knows how to play the game. But what game? And by whose rules? Unlike in past generations, today’s job seekers don’t show up with work ethic in their pockets alongside the keys to the car they worked two jobs to earn, grateful for any wage offered and happy to do any dirty job that needs doing. If that’s your expectation and you view modern applicants through that lens, you’ll continue to seek work ethic in vain.

Work Ethic is Workplace-Cultural

While interviewing thousands of leaders in businesses large and small that are today’s desired employers—those consistently earning top marks as the best places to work. What we learned was completely at odds with our own expectations. Leadership at these companies is shifting focus from what’s best for customers to what’s best for employees. They’ve figured out that by giving employees what they want and need to thrive in the workplace—in short, what they expect—customer happiness takes care of itself. And what employees want and are demanding in huge numbers is, at the very least, flexible schedules, collaborative work cultures, a shot at making the world a better place and a living wage. Oh, and your help and respect is also on the list.

Work Ethic is Teachable

It is possible to create a company culture that demands a strong work ethic and will nudge out those who don’t embrace it. But leadership has to instill it. Let’s jump back to the model that work ethic is an assumed belief that varies from individual to individual. Where’s the bridge to teaching it?

If you’re still living in the land of ‘How dare they expect anything they should be happy for the job,’ We have a suggestion for you, and it isn’t lowering your expectations. Stop. Breathe. Take a look. Ask yourself a question. What are you doing—not to motivate your people—but what are you doing to demotivate them? Try to be grateful for the skill sets they have because many of those skills come in really handy for you. They’re fresh, they’re young, they’re tech-savvy, they’re streetwise, they can take your cash register apart and put it back together blindfolded, but they can’t count back change from a dollar. Help them.

Referring in great part to millennials, but stresses that a lack of work ethic can’t be blamed on one generation. Older employees are being asked to shift out of their own comfort zones, as well. There are amazing young people out there who play the game and want to climb the career ladder. And there are baby boomers with no work ethic. You can’t lay all of this at the feet of young people.

Work Ethic is Yours to Define

Finding and hiring for work ethic may well break down to knowing how to tell employees what to do and explaining how to do it—in the language they understand. We have identified seven terms that together construct the work ethic model that’s so elusive to employers. Employers want positive, enthusiastic people (Positive Attitude) who show up on time (Reliability), are dressed and properly prepared (Professionalism), who go out of their way to add value/do more than required (Initiative), play by the rules (Respect), are honest (Integrity) and give cheerful, friendly service (Gratitude). Those seven terms are the fundamental core values that every employer, at every level—from part-time mail clerk to CEO—tell us are non-negotiable.

Clearly, work ethic isn’t a thing that shows up in a tidy package, ready to work. Yet the values inherent in it are definable, actionable, time-tested and recognizable. And the good news is that you can teach them.

By Manta

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Get Things Done

Contrary to what you may think, getting things done  (GTD) is a fairly simple methodology. It’s about managing several lists with some rules that anyone can understand and apply.

The most complex part of GTD is not in theory but in practice since you will surely need to develop—if you do not already have them—one or more of the three habits needed to get things done productively:

1. Don't keep things in your head

“If you your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything, it is open to everything” ~ Shunryu Suzuki

David Allen emphasizes that it is necessary to capture everything that might be something you have to do, keeping it in a reliable system that you can review at any time, out of your head! (and there are scientifically sound arguments in favor of this habit).

Everything means 100% of things. Those that you have to do soon and those that you have to do someday, the big ones and the small ones, those that have to do with your work and those that are part of your personal life, the significant ones, and the others as well. Why is this so important?

  • Because everything you consider incomplete will require your attention steadily and unconsciously.
  • Thinking of the same things repeatedly makes you waste time and generates stress. If you get these things into a trusted system, out of your mind, you will stop thinking about them.
  • You get a clear idea of the volume of things you have to deal with.
  • You can increase your concentration in any activity since you are not distracted by indefinite stuff hitting your head.
  • You will learn where your commitments are, which will allow you to say no to things you should not and do not want to do.
  • It boosts your creativity because now you are using your mind to think about things, not to remember things.
2. Decide, decide and decide

“Without a next action, there remains a potentially infinite gap between current reality and what you need to do” ~ David Allen

Everything that comes into your life can’t just stay there. You must discipline yourself to make decisions about all your stuff. You must know clearly what your commitment to each thing is and decide what to do—or what not to do—about it.

In order for your organization to work properly, you need to empty your inbox on a regular basis, that is, to clarify what each of the things that you have previously captured mean. Clarify does not mean do, it means you must decide what each thing is and what you are going to do with it. Why should you do this?

  • Because this way you become aware of reality and you can focus on what is important without letting yourself be carried away by the urgent. And you lower your level of anxiety.
  • You gain control of the situation since you know exactly what things you’re not doing.
  • Every time you make a decision there is a feeling of relief and you feel less pressure because you can see things more clearly.
  • You become accountable for your things and that will raise your self-esteem.
  • Your ability to get things done will be reinforced. You are more productive.
3. Review your system regularly

“To make knowledge productive, we will have to learn to see both forest and tree.” ~ Peter F. Drucker

Your system must be up-to-date in order to be useful. You must reflect on the important things in your life and your work, your current projects, and your next actions, as often as you need to not have to think about it. Some reasons to do this:

  • Reviewing everything lets you know what things you are not doing.
  • You’ll ensure you have defined the next action step for each incomplete and this will allow you to advance all your projects.
  • If everything is under control, your head remains free to think at a higher level.
  • Clarifying your current situation and reviewing your long-term goals will help you make better decisions.

By Francisco

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

How Can Your Startup Benefit from Social Networks?

People often forget that tools cannot innately be good or bad. The same axe that can be used to hurt people can provide lumber for a shelter or fuel for a fire. A similar thing applies to social networks. While older generations accuse millennials of just wasting their time there, things are not as simple. In fact, any 21st-century business owner will immediately agree that social networks have completely revolutionized the world as we know it.

Customer Insight

The first privilege that social media will provide you is some valuable customer insight. A major conglomerate can always hire a team of analysts, employ the most expensive analytic tools and wait for the results, while a startup has no such privilege. What you can do is try to blend in with your social network crowd, read their comments, look at the retweet and like ratio and in this way see if there is anything your clients are happy/unhappy about. Some may claim these to be vanity metrics since there is no telling that the person who pressed the like button is a paying customer, or that a person giving a negative comment isn’t a potential buyer. Still, this is not what you are looking for in the first place, but only some feedback to tell you if you are going in the right direction.

Centralized Digital Workspace

Another great advantage of social networks is that they allow you to create a truly centralized digital workspace. Normally, when it comes to your digital marketing, you would have to work with a plethora of different tools and platforms. Still, with the right software for communication, you can seamlessly integrate all these tools and application into a single spot. One of such software is Interact, which also allows you to utilize your startup’s collective intelligence by including everyone to the same network. Working smarter, not harder, that’s the key to success.

Remote Work

Another great advantage of social networks is that it has allowed people to work remotely. In the US alone, these telecommuters amount to around 45 percent of all employees. Facebook Messenger is one of the most popular pieces of IM software out there and it allows your team a quick and simple communication. This is great even for people who work on the opposite sides of the same office since it helps them create less noise to distract others. So, next time you walk through the office and see an employee on their Facebook, you can either scold them or suggest them for promotion. Either option is viable.

Product Placement

Finally, once you share content on social media you start a wildfire. There’s a chance that any of your contacts may share it as well, which opens up all their contacts as potential brand ambassadors. Still, you need to make your content compelling, interesting and above all shareable in order to encounter this kind of reaction. It goes without saying that different platforms have different target demographics, which is yet another thing to keep in mind when planning your social media marketing campaign.

Conclusion

The best thing about the aforementioned is that the price of any of these actions goes from low to completely free of charge. Needless to say, this makes it ideal for startups which usually operate on a tight budget as it is. As you can see, the social media have this enormous potential to transform your business from a young company to an all-powerful enterprise. Still, this depends solely on how you use it. Choose wisely!

Dan Radak is a marketing professional with eleven years of experience. He is currently working with a number of companies in the field of digital marketing, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies. He is also a coauthor on several technology websites and a regular contributor to Technivorz.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Productivity Tips to Help You Get More Done

If you sometimes lie awake at night worrying about how you’re going to get all your work done, you’re not the only one. According to research from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), 40% of American employees experience excessive anxiety in their working lives. In a tough economic environment, professionals have to work harder to stay ahead of the competition, meaning they take on more projects with tighter deadlines and don’t defer tasks when required. No wonder national stress levels are sky high!

It’s not all bad news. Even if you’re not naturally organized, you can learn how to manage and prioritize your tasks to make it seem as if there are more hours in the day. Here are some productivity tips to help you get more work done in less time.

1. Create a realistic to-do list

People often underestimate the value of planners and to-do lists and don’t spend time on them. They simply perform the first task they spot and move on to the next without clear direction. This lack of direction means that you spend more time on your tasks and on deciding what you need to do next. You also feel less accomplished at the end of the day because you had to postpone certain chores and projects.

A realistic daily to-do list can help you stay on schedule and get everything done. You will also know which tasks you simply won’t be able to fit in and plan your schedule accordingly. You just need 5 to 10 minutes to go through the tasks and create a small to-do list on the night before your workday. Be sure to include everything from big work projects to small grocery store visits.

2. Schedule chunks of time

According to a study conducted by Microsoft, if you’re interrupted or distracted while working on a task, it takes at least 15 minutes for you to focus again. That’s why it’s essential to schedule chunks of time and make sure you’re not disturbed during this period. You should shut-off your social media, place your phone on silent, and remove all distractions from your immediate surroundings.

During this scheduled time, you should maintain your focus on the task at hand and get it done. After the task is accomplished, you can reward yourself with a small break and do something else.

3. Delegate

Modern entrepreneurs and professionals often struggle with this. They try to do everything themselves and don’t delegate tasks to their employees or fellow team members, even when they’re overwhelmed by work. Don’t be afraid to delegate tasks that can be handled well by other members of your team or employees.

Professionals who learn to delegate well often finish projects quickly and stay ahead of the game. They’re also more aware of the full potential of their team or employees and help build a strong work culture in their office.

4. Stop multitasking

Many people mistakenly assume that multitasking helps them save time and get things done quickly. Nothing could be further from the truth. As mentioned earlier, the brain takes at least 15 minutes to refocus when you switch tasks. When you work on two things at the same time, you’re forced to switch focus continuously, with an obvious knock-on effect on your productivity.

Instead of multitasking, focus your attention on one task at a time and get it done. You’ll be less distracted and will avoid making mistakes. You’ll also get everything done at a steady pace and still have some time to take breaks in between tasks.

5. Don’t be a perfectionist

Perfectionism is perhaps the biggest obstacle to productivity and can cause a lot of stress. It’s not really possible to be absolutely perfect at everything. You just need to focus all your attention on the task before you and do your best. As long as the results are good and your customers are satisfied, you don’t need to worry about getting everything absolutely right.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t focus on quality. There’s a difference between making sure your work is up to standards and setting impossible standards. If you’re a perfectionist, you’ll never be satisfied with your work and always find flaws in it. That is something you should avoid at all costs.

6. Sleep

Almost every article and guide on this subject will recommend that you get a sufficient amount of sleep if you want to stay productive. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults need 7 to 8 hours of sleep every day and if you don’t reach that quota, you will add to your sleep deficit. This deficit will eventually slow you down and have an impact on your productivity.

If you follow these tips, you’ll get more work done efficiently and still have some time on your hands to sit back and relax. Smart organizing and prioritizing is the best way to improve productivity. However, you should also keep in mind that there’s a limit to how much you can do. Don’t expect too much from yourself and take on more than you can handle – the last thing you want to do is burn out. Be kind to yourself, work productively, and you’ll get results with none (or at least a lot less) of the stress!

By Ashley Andrews

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

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