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From the Executive Director
Dear Members and Colleagues:
We have many events planned in May, and as many of you already know, the more networking opportunities you attend, the more people you will meet, and potentially the more business you will do! Bring your friends!
Have you heard about SSWBN's Business Development Day on Thursday, May 9th? You are invited to spend the morning connecting with others, learning about the never-ending topics of social media, public speaking, how to convert your website visitors into paying clients, and tips on becoming a millionaire-ess! Like last year, we will end the day with some stress relief meditation techniques. All this for only $59! Please join us.
I LOVE to laugh and am so looking forward to our Comedy Night on May 15th. Comedian Dave Rattigan is hilarious and we will enjoy appetizers at Turner's Yard in Pembroke. Come laugh with me!
For a $10 raffle ticket purchase YOU could win a weekend away in Onset on Cape Cod with dinner for two! SSWBN is selling raffle tickets now and the winner will be chosen on June 27th. You can purchase tickets at any events or here.
781-696-9901 * firstname.lastname@example.org
Dedicated to the success of our members through Contacts, Coaching and Collaboration - our mission.
Message from the President
|Terri Martini |
This is the time of year when we begin the process of changing the Board of Directors, by replacing those who are completing their three-year terms. (For the sake of continuity, at no time does the Board replace all of the Directors at once.) As you know, we selected Stacy Mafera, soon to be Stacy Doherty in two weeks when she gets married, as our incoming President. Congratulations! We also have three open seats to replace on the Board.
For me, having served as a Board member and now President has been an incredible experience. The SSWBN overall is such an empowering group of people. My business has changed positively; my personal life has changed with the growth of so many relationships; and even my 10-year-old son, Brendan, has learned that "Paying it Forward" is such an important part of life. Thank you Janet LaBerge for that!
Are you looking to get more involved in the Network, but you are not sure how? Are you looking to get more involved in the community, but not sure how? Let SSWBN lead you down a path that will change you positively.
There are two requirements for nomination: you must be a member for at least one year, and you must be nominated by another member. You cannot nominate yourself.
If you are looking for an opportunity to be part of the pulse of the Network, if you have great ideas, great strength and lots of energy, look into becoming a Board member!
Click here to see additional requirements and the members of the current Board: http://www.sswbn.com/about-sswbn/Board-of-directors/
I am available to answer any questions you may have.
About the Law - Barry Gordon, GMO
Plan, Protect and Proceed
Our granddaughter, Elizabeth, is 10 years old. Since she was a baby, my wife, Renee, told herself and Elizabeth that when Elizabeth was 10 Grandma Renee would take her to Paris. Begrudgingly, I was allowed to tag along and the three of us went to Paris for a week in March, 2013. We tried our best to see Paris through the eyes of a 10-year-old. We think we succeeded.
We were able to do this because of a lot of luck, hard work and planning. I am not sure of the percentages but it worked.
So, to the purpose of the story, if it is not obvious:
Plan, Protect and Proceed. As any reader of past columns may have surmised, I am an optimist and a bit of a pragmatist. I have tripped more than once and have been pushed around now and again throughout my life. Through it all I did and continue to do my very best to look forward to tomorrow and beyond. I try not to repeat the past mistakes -- but sometimes I do.
I try to plan for many contingencies, but cannot think of all of them. I apologize a lot and try very hard to explain to my clients, my friends and my family the need to focus on what is important and most beneficial.
I seek advice.
I listen to my financial planner, my accountant, healthcare providers, other lawyers and good friends. I do my best to protect my assets and my health. Do I take chances? Absolutely! For starters, I walk out the door every day. I invest in the stock market. I travel to foreign places and get in my car every day. Will bad things happen? Yes, but hopefully not too bad.
You should develop your own set of trusted advisors and listen to them. You should understand that they are providing a service, so if you hire them you should be willing to pay them. Always consider a second opinion. None of us is right all the time even when we do our best.
Take a page from the playbook of Gordon, Mond & Ott: we provide estate planning services and business planning services, and even we work with other professionals.
Whether it is a trip to Paris, Cape Cod or a Red Sox game, PLAN, PROTECT, PROCEED -- and then relax.
Call me or email me, Barry Gordon. I would appreciate the opportunity to be part of your team of advisors.
Gordon, Mond & Ott
About Your Money - Cheryle Brady, Ameriprise Financial, Inc.
Cheryle Brady, Ameriprise Financial Services
Choosing a college with Finances in Mind
It's the time of year when high school seniors across the country are making their final decisions about where they will attend college. Selecting the right college has always been a complex process, but in challenging economic times, the decision can be even more complicated for students and families. As higher education becomes more costly and competitive, it's often difficult for high school students and their parents to know how to approach the situation emotionally or financially.
As parents (and holders of the pocketbook), your part in the college selection process can take many forms ─ from helping your student research and visit institutions, to seeking out scholarships. It's also possible that your child's college education will have a significant impact on your family's finances, so if you're helping foot the bill, don't hesitate to be involved as your child decides where to attend college.
Keep the following things in mind as you help your son or daughter evaluates schools:
- Set financial guidelines before your student begins the process. The first step in the college selection process should be determining how much you can afford to fund from savings or current cash flow, how much you or your student will need to borrow, and what you'll expect your child to personally contribute. Organize your finances and determine the amount of debt you can afford to take on if you co-sign for your student's loans. Be sure to clarify your expectations regarding loan repayment with your child and help him or her seek out scholarship and aid opportunities if extra funding is needed. It's also important to know when it's right to encourage your student to explore other schools or options.
- Have an honest conversation with your child about the seriousness of student loans. Loan repayment may seem like the distant future to teens, but if your son or daughter chooses to take out a significant amount of loans, it's crucial that they understand the long-term financial burden that may cause in the future. One of the best ways parents can help communicate to their child the significance of student loans is to sit down with them and do the math. After determining the total cost of college, calculate an estimate of what your child's monthly student loan payment may be after graduation. Discuss what a typical graduate's after-tax take-home pay might be and discuss what kind of choices your child might need to make in order to afford those payments. Making the dollars and cents real can bring clarity to an otherwise vague future obligation.
- Don't immediately exclude options. Though it's hard not to be alarmed when you see some college's price tags, try not to immediately exclude an expensive school your son or daughter is interested in. If your child has a strong interest in a specific major or program, there may be a big payoff for attending a school with a good reputation in that area, even if you invest a large amount now. Also consider the reason for the cost. In some cases, a high price tag may be equated with the quality of education, professors, research and even job placement, which could benefit your child greatly in the future.
- Prepare for the future. In addition to looking closely at paying back student loans,plan for the financial impact that will come with sending multiple children to college as your oldest is going through the process. Don't forget to include the cash flow needs your child might have while adjusting to campus life. Consider consulting with a professional financial advisor who can help you to determine the overall cost of higher education for your children, and to prepare you and your family financially.
As a parent you will play multiple roles when helping your child select a college, which can be taxing on your time, emotions and finances, but it's important to remember that your child is also going through a significant transition. Talking about finances at the beginning of your child's college search and before they head to campus should be a priority for you and your student during this exciting time.
Cheryle Brady is a Financial Advisor and Associate Vice President with Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. in Quincy, Massachusetts. She specializes in fee-based financial planning and asset management strategies and has been in practice for 20 years. To contact her, telephone 617-691-2167, Ameriprise Financial Services, 859 Willard Street, Floor 3, Quincy, MA 02169. http://ameripriseadvisors.com/cheryle.brady
Brokerage, investment and financial advisory services are made available through Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA and SIPC. © 2013 Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved.
Connections and thank-yous continue to pour in and it is wonderful to see how effective our Network can be.
Kim DeGust's acknowledgements include one for Lois Wood for designing "an awesome new logo" for the Law office of Kim M. DeGust www.degustlaw.com; a second for Susana Griffin of Bank of Canton for finding the right mortgage product for a buyer for Kim's real estate business www.degustrealestate.com.; and a third for Kathy Cahill of Amity Insurance for working with her on the recent First Time Homebuyer workshop. "Thank you for all the great advice," said Kim.
Nicole Peterkin of New York Life has an abundance of thank yous she'd like to share:
"Thank you to Kat Ogar of Infinite Health and Wellness for her donation of Shake-o-logy as a raffle prize at the last breakfast (which I won and loved)! Not only do I love the product and have registered as a client, but Kat was kind enough to drop off a blender cup for me and has been so great with follow up to make sure there are no problems with ordering and that I know she is available for consultation. She was also great about answering all my questions and addressing my concerns about my order! I'm so happy to be working with her.
"To Ewa Devaney of Studio 123. I met her at a Dynamic Divas Development Day and I have been seeing her for facials ever since! I have been incredibly self-conscious about my skin in the past year because I've been experiencing breakouts and haven't known how to deal with them. I tried so many products and got facials from various spas but I felt like no one really understood what my skin needed and of course I had no idea. Ewa is so great about suggesting what to do and what not to do with regard to my skin, and as a result my breakouts have been severely reduced over the past six months that I've been seeing her. I am usually mute during facials and spa treatments as I just want to relax, but Ewa has such a great energy and has such a great personality that I look forward to chatting and catching up. The best part? I don't have to wait for my monthly facial/eyebrow waxing to see Ewa because I just found out last week that she does manicures and pedicures, too, and does a fabulous job! One week later and not one chip!
"Thank you to Jessica Foley of Dave and Busters who at a SSWBN networking lunch was kind enough to invite Rosemarie Lanchester and I to get a tour of the facility. We had a great time getting a tour, playing a few games, and then getting to know Jessica over appetizers. Jessica was so kind to treat us to a few hours of fun and she is super knowledgeable about how to create value and how to plan great events. I would definitely recommend others to meet with Jessica, see what she does, and hear about the great opportunities with Dave and Busters!
"And a long overdue thank you to Darlene Calcagno of Cuisine by Darlene for doing such a great job cooking delicious and healthy meals for me and my family. It is evident that she puts time and detail into her menus and preparation and it is great to look forward to coming home to delicious meals. Also, I referred her to a client of mine and he and his daughter were extremely impressed with the quality of the meals she prepared and with her professionalism and kindness.
"I am grateful to Paula Lind of O'Donoghue Insurance for always knowing what is going on with my property and casualty insurance when I get a little lost. I bought a new car a few weeks ago and called Paula's office on the way home that Friday evening and left her a message letting her know. By Monday everything was all set - - I didn't even have to do anything -- she took care of it all!
"I reached out to Washawn Jones of Boston Business Journal after she emailed a promotion for the BBJ. She was kind enough to place my order for me and to schedule time to sit down with me before the next lunch to talk me through how to leverage the paper to help grow my business. Although I have yet to do anything except read the paper, I feel more knowledgeable about what is going on locally with small and large businesses and have been able to apply this knowledge when working with clients. Her tips were practical and I am confident that when I start implementing them they will work out fabulously because I have already heard from other SSWBN members that Washawn's tips on leveraging the BBJ have helped grow their business networks! All in all I am just so thankful that I have met such great people in the Network who have helped me both personally and professionally -- and I am happy that I can do my part to help them grow their businesses as well!" said Nicole.
Judy Rizzo of Rizzo Plumbing and Heating expresses her sincere thanks to Terri Martini of Front Street Gourmet "for making an awesome gift basket for me - I was so proud to present it!" She also thanks to Kat Ogar of Infinite Health & Wellness"for being my health coach. Kat is helping me with a few issues so I can avoid medication, and she is helping me to expand my diet so I have more variety and better health!" Judy also sends out a thank you to Allison Guido of Almar Building & Remodeling for job referrals: "It is always a pleasure to work with Almar," she said.
Janet LaBerge of Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap would like to thank Elizabeth Pineault of Elizabeth Pineault, CPA "for once again making it easy to file our taxes, complete and on time." She also thanks Rosemarie Lanchester of Everything You Wish For. "Rosemarie's tagline is if you're feeling crappy, I can make you happy. I had recently torn the ligaments in my right shoulder due to a skiing accident - so I fit her tagline criteria," said Janet. "Rosie sat with me and introduced me to EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique). After just one session there was less pain and greater range of motion!" Janet acknowledges Jacqueline Collins of Partnering for Performance "for trusting Dirty Deeds to clean out her mom's apartment."
And I want to thank Stacey Mafera of Errands Etcetera for referring a recent client to Premiere Pros, and to Kat Ogar of Infinite Health & Wellness for letting me try Shakeology - love it!
Love to see all these great connections being made! Have a wonderful and successful
Errands Etcetera for referring a recent client to Premiere Pros, and to Kat Ogar of Infinite Health & Wellnessf or letting me try Shakeology - love it!
|Above and Beyond|
|Lynn Feingold |
Friends, please use this space in the newsletter to publicize and celebrate your business achievements. Whether it be large accomplishments or small victories or something in between, all successes constitute great publicity for your business, and it helps you to attract new clients. Keep the positive news flowing!
Congratulations to Kristen Ford-Hernandez of Enterprise Marketing for achieving Constant Contact All Star status for 2013. Each year, Constant Contact bestows the All Star Award to a select group of businesses and nonprofits who are successfully leveraging online marketing tools to engage their customer base, and drive success for their organizations. Enterprise Marketing's results ranked among the top 10 percent of Constant Contact's international customer base.
Happy Anniversary to all of our friends at George Washington Toma TV and Appliance ("where there's always a Toma to talk to!") for celebrating 60 years in business, and the 5th Anniversary of their Brockton store. What an achievement!
Congratulations to Rosemary McLaughlin, who recently opened her second Elements Therapeutic Massage studio on Saturday April 20th in Bridgewater on Route 18. "It's pretty cool and keeps me busy," said Rosemary. "Stop by one of the studios, as I'm sure you need a massage ... who doesn't?"
Send your upbeat notices to me by email for inclusion in this column. Don't hide your light under a bushel - let it shine!
serves as your Managing Editor of the SSWBN Compass.
E-newsletter designed by
Nancy O'Keefe, Owner
Simple Small Business Solutions
Address: PO Box 1625, Plymouth, MA
Where Planning And Implementation Meet
How did you come to be in this line of work?
I've been helping businesses implement systems for over 30 years. It all started when a small business owner I worked for decided his business should have in-house computing. I was given the opportunity to do the research, interview vendors and make a recommendation. After the purchase, I was charged with implementing the system and changing the business processes -- and I was hooked!
What are the top three things that separate you from your competition?
We are different from other coaches and consultants because we work with our clients to complete the system implementations. More than just advising and planning, you will find us where planning and implementation meet: moving the goals and strategies into tactics and actually doing the implementation work in our one-on-one and group sessions. We look at the whole issue, recommend, implement and integrate the solution into the business.
Describe your dream/perfect/best customer.
Our ideal clients are small business owners who are frustrated by the number of hours they are working and still cannot get everything done. They suffer from a lack of time to focus on growing their businesses and they want their lives back. Usually they have thought about technology, but they do not know where to start or what to do next. They are ready to make a commitment to real change that transforms their business by putting systems to work for them.
What changes are happening, or can you predict happening soon, within your industry?
There are so many amazing tools, both software and gadgets, on the market today and new arrivals appear weekly. It is hard for the small business owner to know what s/he should be paying attention to ... and change is only going to happen more and more rapidly. It is too easy to start chasing "shiny objects" and waste a lot of time looking at solutions that are cool, but don't really serve the business. Small business owners need more help than ever to sift through the solutions, especially those that will work now and carry into the future.
What is the most common problem you see in your work?
The most common problem I see in small businesses is underutilized software. In many cases the business already has the tool they need to improve their situation or solve a business problem -- but they never get around to implementing it and incorporating it into the way they do business. Simple Small Business Solutions can help them put that in the "done" column.
Where do you want you and your business to be in five years?
Our goal over the next five years is to be of service to as many small business owners as possible. That is why we are introducing our group training and coaching programs, as well as our system implementation labs. As we roll this out beginning May 15th, there will be increasingly more opportunity to get the help and guidance you need as we will be providing business-friendly forums designed especially for small business owners.
What benefit(s) have you received through your networking efforts?
Networking is one of the primary ways we meet small business owners and get a chance to understand their issues and concerns. It provides us with information that helps us craft programs that provide real assistance and meet their needs. As we build new relationships through networking, we offer a free, 45-minute system strategy session to businesses that qualify. This gives them a one-on-one opportunity to get some of their system questions answered and learn valuable information they can use in their business.
What motivates you on a day-to-day basis?
I love the entrepreneurial life: being free to innovate, create and have earnings that are not defined by a salary range. For me, this is the "American Dream" and I would love to help as many people as I can to achieve it. Small business success is one key to our economic recovery and I'm very motivated to help businesses grow and succeed.
What do you do in your spare time for fun?
In my spare time, I enjoy traveling, painting and spending time with family and friends. It's fun to explore new places and experience a change of scenery. If I can organize a trip and include family or friends, that makes it perfect! When I come home, I might try to fashion a memory on a piece of watercolor paper or invite some friends over to experience a new dish I discovered in my travels.