Time off can be productive
the family vacation!
This month I'm headed off for about a week with the
family to the beach and a local water park resort (hey, we live in Texas, the
only way I'm going outside is if there is cool water involved).
had these grand plans to bring my laptop and make sure there was high-speed
internet so I could work during our vacation. But I think we all need to take time
completely off from our businesses; take a step back, enjoy "not
working" for a few days so we can come back refreshed and rejuvenated.
only be productive if you are relaxed and ready to go!
the way, does anyone know a good Palm-based program to allow pgp/gpg
encryption emails? I can't seem to find one. Yes, I am taking my PDA
Phone that has email capabilities.
What can I say...Small steps for this semi-workaholic!
"Tom's Tech Tip" talks about
Learn a little about customization in
the QuickBooks tips section
Our spotlight this month is on Ink Think - They
think about it so I don't have to!
My usual collection of quirky office and accounting humor.
... and those ever important upcoming tax deadlines
hope you enjoy this month's issue! I am always looking for articles. If you
have an article you would like to write, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sell Yourself, Don't Sell Yourself
Say the words "networking" or
"marketing yourself" to a new business owner and watch them
running for the nearest want ads. Part, a big part, of running your own
business is learning how to sell yourself and your services. If you aren't
marketing your business you are selling yourself short. I'm no marketing/networking whiz myself but I
have picked up a few things on how to sell yourself without breaking the bank...
You would be amazed at how productive a local networking group can be. Seek
out your local Chambers of Commerce, professional and trade associations, BNI,
other local groups. Attend the meetings. Be prepared with your 20-second
elevator speech, business cards, and other promotional material. Listen to people
talk about their businesses and see if there's a way you can help them and their
clients. Remember it's a give and take situation. They are
there for the same reason you are. I've found several people to refer my clients
to in this manner.
If you can, don't
bring just a business card,
dress it up a bit. You're typically going to come home with a handful
of cards, make sure yours stands out! For instance, I make up little bags of jelly
beans, attach my business card, and put a sticker on the front that says "Need Help Counting Your Beans?
Call Candy!" Remember to make it
easy to remove your card, you don't want them destroying it! I use double stick tape.
Don't be a wallflower... this is one of the
hardest things for me. I'm actually a pretty introverted person naturally. Make
yourself go talk to people. Recite your elevator speech on the way there (yes
you might get some strange looks in neighboring cars). Practice practice
practice, both in person and in private, until it feels natural and comfortable.
Join Online Groups
Yes, it is time consuming, but joining groups of other professionals - listservs,
email lists, message boards, and networking groups such as Ryze,
can be very rewarding, both in direct work and referrals.
Be prepared to offer up some free advice and keep your name out there!
Create A Good Signature
Come up with a short but sweet signature block. Use it in all
your emails and
online posts. DO Make sure it includes your name, tagline and website address.
use a lot of fancy colors or fonts-you want to get their attention, not scare
them away. The same with customized e-stationary.
Some people don't accept HTML emails and these things make the message come across
as garbage. No one wants to search through a bunch of HTML coding to find your
|There once was a business
owner who was interviewing people for a division manager position.
He decided to select the individual that
could answer the question "how much is 2+2?"
The engineer pulled out his slide rule and
shuffled it back and forth, and finally announced "It lies between 3.98
The mathematician said "In two hours I can
demonstrate it equals 4 with the following short proof."
The attorney stated "In the case of Svenson
vs. the State, 2+2 was declared to be 4."
The accountant looked at the business owner,
then got out of his chair, went to see if anyone was listening at the
door and pulled the drapes. Then he returned to the business owner,
leaned across the desk and said in a low voice,
"What would you like it to be?"
He got the job.
QuickBooks Q & A
Never use the "Reminder" function and
wish you could get rid of the button up there? Always use the "Find"
function and wish you could add that button for quick access?
you can! Just simply go to "Customize Icon Bar" under the
"View" menu and you can add, remove and even reorder the icons.
from New Jersey asks:
Q: What are the major differences between QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks Online?
Functionality-wise, the main difference is that the online version does not
track inventory or work with programs such as Word and ACT!. Nor does it allow
online banking and a few other features. I find for most small businesses that
don't need to track inventory, it works great. Price-wise, Pro is going to be
cheaper for you, probably half the cost. However, if you want to be able to
access your accounts on-the-go and not have to worry about backups and lost
data, it's a great alternative. The other great thing about the Online version
is that you can have up to 20 users. The lowest license comes with 3 users (and
a free accountant user). If you want several different people to be able to
access your accounting files, it's wonderful. The downside is that I find
sometimes logging into the online version takes a little more time than starting
it up from your desktop. It's a personal choice for each business person to
Is it Quickbooks or QuickBooks? Per the Intuit
website, manufacturers of QuickBooks, both the 'Q' and the 'B' are capitalized.
|Important Tax Deadlines|
15 - Personal tax returns due (for those that filed an extension)
15 - IRS Monthly payroll tax deposits due for July
15 - IRS Monthly payroll tax deposits due for August
15 - Final Deadline for Corporate Tax Returns
15 - 1040ES Estimated Taxes due for 3rd Quarter 2005
Spotlight On... Ink Think |
This month we take a look backstage at Ink Think, the company that does our
copyediting for this newsletter and other projects.
Dyanna Larson, the woman
behind Ink Think, spent 6+ years in hotel sales and marketing before deciding it
was time to go freelance and opening up Ink Think, a virtual assistant company
based in Austin, Texas, in December of 2004.
Ink Think is a full service VA firm with service offerings ranging from
basic data entry to meeting and event planning, but Dyanna specializes in
working with words. She does editing of all types from light copyedits to
developmental editing, original content and copywriting, proofreading, and
research for other writers
Ink Thinkís website is currently being revamped with an expected launch date
later this month. In the meantime you can reach Dyanna at
email@example.com or by phone at (512) 922-2731. Keep an eye on
www.inkthinkva.com and find out why Ink Think is "where words go to work."
Talk with Tom...
Fast & Easy File Sharing
Ok, so youíre tired of lugging around 20 floppies
just to move quarterly reports from one computer to another in the same
building. Or, maybe you think it would be really nice to have one copy of the
company calendar that everyone can access and change as needed. And wouldn't it
be nice to have all your MP3's accessible from anywhere on the network?
A lot of people think you need a special File
Server on your network to make this happen. But since the days of Windows 3.1,
any computer can easily be used to share files across a network, you just have
to know how to tell your computer that you want to do it.
(No, Candy, voice recognition is not quite THAT good
So, how DO you set your computer up to be able to
share those nifty MP3s...eh hem...I mean that Company Calendar so everyone can
Well, first you have to have a network with more
than one computer attached. Two computers will do just fine. The computer that
the files are on, we will call the "Server" and the other will be the "Client".
(Note: Both machines can actually fulfill BOTH roles at the same time very
easily if you need files from one machine on the other and vice versa.)
Ready? Away we go!
Setting up the Server:
"Start", then "Settings", and "Network Connections"
Click the connection that connects your computer to your network
Select "Properties" from the dropdown box
you already see "File and Print Sharing for Microsoft Networks skip to step
you do not see "File and Print Sharing for Microsoft Networks" then
Click "Service" and "Add"
Select "File and Print Sharing for
close all of those nifty windows you just had open.
may be prompted to re-start Windows at this point, if so, please do so
before moving on to step 8.
"My Computer" from your desktop.
the file/drive/folder (any or all of these) that you wish to share.
click the file/drive/folder you wish to share and select "Sharing and
The next couple of windows you will
see will basically be "I am sure I want to do this" in the first box click the
underlined text, in the second click the correct radio button and hit ok.
You will see a window with a box you
can put a check in to say "I wish to share this on the network".
Once the box is checked, you can then
name this resource. Make SURE you remember this name.
All done with the server. Congrats!
Now letís see if you can get to this file from the "Client".
Setting up the Client:
Perform steps 1 through 7 for setting up the
On your desktop, open "My Network Places"
Click "Add a Network Place".
Click "Choose another network location" and
Click the "+" next to "Entire Network".
Click the "+" next to "Microsoft Windows
Click the name of your network (Usually MSHOME).
Click on the name of the computer that has the
file you want to see.
Click on the files/folder/drive that is shared.
This should add that destination to you "My Network
Places" folder, and to access it next time all you have to do is open "My
Network Places" and double click its icon.
Two things to remember in all this:
1.) You should ALWAYS have a firewall protecting
your network from the internet. Once file sharing is enabled, you will be a lot
more accessible to those "hackers" out there that might want to cause harm to
your computer or files.
2.) Unless you specify otherwise while setting up
your shared files, anyone on your network will be able to edit the file and even
erase it. Make sure you back up regularly to ensure your important files stay
Ok, folks, that's it for this month. If you have
any questions regarding File Sharing or your computer in general, please feel
free to shoot me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Beauchamp is the owner of LANís Edge in Austin, TX. LANís Edge is a computer
gaming center that offers PC and Xbox gaming as well as a high-speed internet
connections, and PC sales and repair. He
can be reached at email@example.com.
Visit http://www.lansedge.com for more
Q: What's the difference between an accountant and a lawyer?
A: The accountant knows he is boring.
an article youíd like to write for our monthly newsletter or want to be
spotlighted? Have a QuickBooks question or something you'd like to see in the
A special thank you to
our copyeditor and all-around-language-geek, Dyanna Larson of Ink
Think - visit her website for more information about her services.