OffAssist

A Note from Candy

December 2014
Volume 14, Issue #1

Growth is Change

 

Happy Holidays! I don’t know about you folks, but I’m ready for 2015. 2014 offered a lot of challenges for my team this year: a few people came down with some nasty illnesses, some had personal things going on, switching around clients to better fit their skill set, Lanel coming back on board as the business manager, and so much more. Don’t get me wrong, it was a great year, but I’m hoping 2015 is a little less of all of us running around like chickens with our heads cut off.

This is the time of the year when I always look back over this year and look at what worked and what didn’t work. This year, re-aligning clients within the team based on our various  skillsets was definitely the right thing to do. By design, anyone on our team can handle any of our clients, but we all have extra strengths. It only benefits my team and the clients. I have a few ideas I want to implement for 2015 that I’ll be working on at the Virtual Assistance League’s 2015 retreat!

I cannot wait!

Follow Us!

     

Forward this newsletter to a friend by clicking here.

In this issue...

Article: How to Organize the Best Office Party

Bookkeeping Tip: Changing the Order of Your Customer List

Tax Deadlines: December 16th, 2014 - February 2nd, 2015

Spotlight You?

Tech Talk: Are you a Times New Roman Type?

Humor: Traditions We Don't Love: Ugly Christmas Sweaters

How to Organize the Best Office Party

By Chris Pine

Office parties can be great fun for all employees. After working with one another every day for hours on end, a little time to kick back and socialize is always a welcome relief. The only bad thing about office parties is how few and far between they seem to be. Another thing about office parties is that someone has to organize it. Perhaps that someone is you. If so, here are a few tips to help you organize a great office party.

1. Get Help

You should definitely seek the input of other people. Chances are there are some real social butterflies in your office. Seek them out; they would love to help. By asking for the advice and input of other folks in your office, you'll make them feel valued, and you'll give them a stake in making the party great. You'll also avoid resentment on down the road from people who didn't get to see the party they wanted. If your office is small, you may want to try to get everyone involved.

2. Get Out of the Office

This may not always be an option, but if it is - you should definitely exercise it. Everyone associates the boring walls of the office with the monotonous daily grind. Instead, get out of the office. Go to a miniature golf course. Go to a park. Throw the party outside. Depending on your office building, you may even throw the party on the roof!

3. Decor

Decorating for your party is a must. Ideally, you want the decorations to match the occasion, and you also want there to be an overall theme. This is one area where the group you assembled will become a big help. Gather around and brainstorm ideas until you can arrive at one that everyone agrees on.

4. Save the Date

Make sure that the date and time you choose for the party aligns with everyone's schedule. Scheduling a party the day before a big holiday can be a mistake because people will often have travel plans or will have guests at their home. If you're unsure, ask everyone if your proposed date works for them. A party is no fun if no one is there.

5. Play Games

Games and other planned activities are a tried and true method for breaking the ice. Rather than standing around chatting about the same old stuff, you want to get everyone DOING something. Usually this won't continue all night, and ideally you'll plan more activities than you actually need; this is just to get the ball rolling.

6. Music

This is another great opportunity to get everyone involved. Rather than choosing the music yourself, you might get everyone to contribute. If your planned party length is 2 hours long, then that translates into twenty-four 5-minute songs. If you've got about 24 people in the office, you can ask each one of them to contribute a song. This is a great technique that inevitably leads everyone to ask "whose song is this?" all night long. Alternatively, if any of your coworkers can play an instrument, you might ask them to contribute some entertainment.

7. Double Up

Depending on the occasion, you might let your employees bring a guest. This can be especially good for people with spouses, who don't like their loved one attending an after-hours "party" without them.

8. Lay off the Alcohol

Although alcohol is usually pretty popular at parties like this, eschewing it can save a lot of troubles down the road. Things can get out of hand. Someone always drinks too much. The company could be held liable if an accident occurs. It's just not worth it.

Office parties are definitely great fun. They can break up our everyday office routine and help us learn about our coworkers in new ways. It strengthens our friendships and our bonds. Hopefully you've now got a few good ideas so you can organize a great office party.

Article Source

Bookkeeping Tip: Changing the Order of Your Customer List

Yes! You can change the order of your customer list to any way you want it in QuickBooks.

First you must be logged in as admin.

Display the list that you want to reorganize.

Make sure the diamond shape is showing (you may have to click twice!). Then you simple hover of the smaller diamond of the customer and drag and drop them in the order you want.

While holding down the mouse button, drag the entry up, down, left, or right to its new location:

To move an entry with all of its subentries, drag the main (parent) entry.

To make a subentry a main entry, drag it to the left.

To make a main entry a subentry, drag it to the right.

Repeat the previous step for all other entries that you want to move.

Bonus tip: If you have a job that falls under a customer that you did not set up as a job, you can always just move it under the customer and drag it a little to the right, it will indent and nest under it as a job.

Source: QuickBooks Support

 

Tax Deadlines

12/16/2014
Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
Corporations - 4th Quarter Estimate Due

12/31/2014
 Last Day to Open KEOGH account for 2014 deposits

1/15/2015
Individuals, Farmers & Fishermen Pay 4th Quarter Estimated Tax Payment
Estates & Trusts 4th Estimated Tax Payment
Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month

 

2/2/2015
FileForm 2290 Heavy Highway Vehicles
Furnish W-2s recipients
Furnish 1099 MISC to recipients
Furnish 1099 Interest to recipients
Furnish 1099 Dividends to recipients
4th Quarter Payroll Reports
File Annual Payroll for Agricultural employees
4th Quarter Federal Excise Tas Return & Payment Voucher

 Spotlight: You?

Have you nursed a secret longing to be in the spotlight, center-stage, all eyes on you?

Or, do you have a product or service you love and want to tell our readers all about it?

If you would like to be featured in the OffAssist spotlight column, and have not been featured in the past twelve months, contact Dyanna@OffAssist.com and we’ll see if we can put you in the limelight!

Tech Talk: Are you a "Times New Roman" type?

Tom BeauchampBy Tom Beauchamp

I am a “Times New Roman” kind of guy. 12 point Times New Roman to be exact. But somebody at Microsoft is apparently a Calibri 11 point person. When it comes to Word, many times the first thing a person does every time they open it is select their favorite font.
Here is how to set your favorite as the default:

  1. Open or create a new Microsoft Office document.
  2. Go to the Home Tab.
  3. In the Styles section, right-click the box that says “Normal” under AaBbCc.
  4. You can now modify that style. Set font, size, pretty much everything.
  5. At the bottom click the button that says “New documents based on this template”.
  6. Click “Okay’.
  7. Done!

You can now breathe a sigh of relief. No more having to deal with Calibri and odd point sized fonts. If you want to have a little fun, wait till the person at the next desk steps away and set their default as 34 point Comic Sans and have a little chuckle every time they start a new document!

Tom Beauchamp is the marketing and tech expert behind OffAssist. He can be reached at tom@offassist.com.

Humor: Traditions We Don't Love: Ugly Christmas Sweaters

Actually, that’s not true. Our editor, Dy Larson, has been trying to persuade her husband to do an ugly sweater holiday family portrait for years now, but he’s just not game. Are you? If so, December 12th is the day to do it. Apparently this is, and I’m not even kidding, “National Ugly Christmas Sweater” Day.  Curious? Find out more on the official website, http://www.nationaluglychristmassweaterday.org/.

Happy Holidays, y’all!  

Have an article you'd 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 Tech Tip? Email candy@offassist.com.

The OffAssist newsletter is made possible by the copywriting/editing skills of Ink Think VA, and the coding talents of Next Level Digital Solutions.

 

Ink Think       

 

 

This newsletter is published monthly by Candy Beauchamp of OffAssist. © 2014

Much of the advice in this newsletter is based upon the research, professional and personal experiences of the authors. If the reader has any questions concerning any material or procedure mentioned, the publisher and authors strongly suggest seeking the advice of a qualified CPA or other professional.