By Lina Martinez
Along with productivity, health and safety is up there with the most important aspects of a workplace environment. There have been so many employers who have failed to keep their employees safe at work and have faced financial claims as a result. This isn’t just bad news for the reputation of the company, but it also means that the business risks failing due to having to pay out huge sums. Keeping your employees safe is paramount to good business, so here’s how to achieve it.
Slips, Trips and Falls
General housekeeping isn’t just about dusting work surfaces or vacuuming each day. If housekeeping is maintained every day, it will be easier to spot hazards in the workplace. For instance, you may notice an uneven patch of flooring, whether it’s because the hardwood floor has become loose or the carpet has a rise in it. This is a potential trip hazard for employees so it’s important to rectify the problem as soon as possible. Similarly, there should always be signs placed where they can be seen if the floor is wet. That way, you’ve fulfilled your responsibility if someone should slip.
If part of your employee’s job is to drive a company vehicle, perhaps delivering goods or visiting different work sites, it’s your responsibility to make sure those vehicles are running perfectly. All of the business vehicles should be regularly serviced, and any reported problems should be fixed immediately. If your employee feels the need to contact car accident lawyers in the event of an accident on the road, the fault cannot be pointed at the business if the vehicle was maintained as it should have been.
Eliminate Fire Hazards
It goes without saying that fire exits are created for a very important reason. So, if your fire exits are obstructed and the worst should happen, valuable time is lost by having to clear the route and you create an unnecessary legal risk. Always keep your fire exits clear. In a world full of electronics, it’s easy for an office to be full of hot equipment and piles of wires. It’s not unheard of for these wires to overheat and catch fire, but if your desks are full of combustible materials, the damage can be so much worse. Encourage your employees to clear their desks of paperwork and keep any unneeded materials in a storage cabinet instead of in their work space.
A busy office will be full of small and large items needed for productivity. From something as small as a stapler to as a big as a printer, these items are often stored in bulk and ready for when an employee needs them. However, some storage systems can pose a risk to employees. If an employee has to reach up and grab something they need, they run the risk of pulling other items down on top of them. Always make it as easy as possible for equipment to be reached and provide training on using step ladders or lifting heavy items.
The health and safety of a workplace should be planned meticulously, or you risk being caught out.
Lina Martinez has her B.S. in Journalism and a regular contributor to our Politics, Life and Money sections. She once admitted over drinks to singing “Careless Whisper” in the shower. We are still trying to get her to sing it at karaoke.
By Jerry Mooney
Whatever your age gender or lifestyle, whatever your job career or hobbies each and every one of us should actively seek out opportunities for self-improvement and development. Human life is, after all, a journey filled with peaks and valleys, highs and lows, challenges and rewards. Only in growing in our mindset, our skills and our experience can we meet the challenges that life throws at us in the professional, educational and interpersonal spheres. When we’re kids, the tools for self-development are laid out before us and we have easy access to them and all the time in the world to engage with them. We’re given access to books and learning materials, sports and activities and our minds and bodies are agile and pliant enough to get to grips with them.
Later in life, although most of us have some access to the same materials, we feel less inclined to engage with them as our commitment to our work, our career, our spouse and our children increases. Even those of us who were total sports nuts in our youth can view such leisure activities as a frivolity that they no longer have time for.
We should, however, all make time because besides the obvious benefits such as physical fitness, weight loss and good health, sports have other benefits that are useful to people of all ages. Get yourself down to FCBC Canada soccer academy, your local fitness center or a public pool regularly and you’ll start to reap the following benefits…
Better quality of sleep
8 Hours a day under fluorescent lights chugging coffee is pretty much the norm for most of us, but this lifestyle is not conducive to a good night’s sleep. Not getting enough sleep can be ruinous for your health, as well as compromising your concentration and diminishing your energy levels throughout the day. Regular exercise and particularly participation in sports raises your core temperature, ensuring that when it cools back down again (i.e. at bedtime), you’ll fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly.
Do you get cranky sitting behind a desk all day? Do you feel grumpy and irritable without quite knowing why? Do you find yourself affected by low mood despite being generally happy with your quality of life? A sedentary lifestyle has been strongly linked to depression while regular exercise stimulates the brain’s production of endorphins leading to better moods and increased vitality. Moreover, participating in sports increases your social circle and gives you more opportunities for human contact which is a guaranteed mood booster in today’s insular lifestyle.
Stress can be an extremely damaging but unfortunately inevitable part of modern life. While occasional bouts of stress and anxiety are natural and can even be a powerful motivator, excess stress can be damaging to your mental health. As tempting as it may be to use your busy schedule as an excuse not to engage in exercise, participating in sports can not only relieve stress but improve your body’s ability to cope effectively with stress meaning that you will be calmer and more collected while your colleagues are tearing their hair out!
Jerry Mooney is co-founder and managing editor of zenruption and the author of History Yoghurt and the Moon. He studied at the University of Munich and Lewis and Clark College where he received his BA in International Affairs and West European Studies. He has recently taught Language and Communications at a small, private college and owned various businesses, including an investment company. Jerry is committed to zenrupting the forces that block social, political and economic justice. He can also be found on Twitter.
By Brian McKay
There is no getting away from the fact that business owners and entrepreneurs have to work hard to develop their budgets. The issue is that unexpected expenses could cause many problems further down the line. For that reason, it’s sensible for everyone to overestimate when it comes to predicting their costs for the next twelve months. It’s also wise to keep a rainy day fund just in case you’ve overlooked anything significant. The information below should assist you in tipping the scales of balance in your favor. Read this article carefully to ensure you leave no stone unturned.
It’s always sensible to employ the services of an expert accountant from the moment you launch your firm. However, even the experts sometimes make mistakes that could lead to complications. For instance, it’s possible that your accountant might forget to include some payments in the final return. That could mean you get into trouble with the authorities and have to pay lots of fines. There is also a chance your accountant might miscalculate the money you owe to the IRS. In that situation, you might not have enough cash in the bank to cover the payment. For the best chance of avoiding tax problems, be sure to:
- Double-check your financial records
- Pay an expert accountant
- Automate the process as much as possible using specialist software
- Always save more cash than you think you owe
Employee disputes can happen for a variety of different reasons, and they’re something all bosses will have to navigate at some point. Some of the most common arguments include:
In most situations, the ex-employee will attempt to take your company to a tribunal or court to seek compensation or justice. It’s vital that you have a legal team waiting to swing into action when that happens. As the boss of the firm, you need to spend your time working on growth and expansion. You don’t have enough hours in the day to deal with legal matters of that nature. With a bit of luck, your lawyers will know how to handle the situation and ensure you get the best result possible.
Injuries and accidents
Unless you work in the safest environment in the world, there is always a chance that accidents and injuries will occur. Most of the time, you just need to record the incidents and provide aftercare for your workers. However, some employees might contact a personal injury law firm with the intention of seeking compensation. You need to make sure the move costs you as little as possible, and that’s another reason you need an expert legal team. Still, there is no getting away from the fact that some judges will side with the worker, and you will have to give them a lot of cash. That could ruin your budgeting efforts if you didn’t keep a rainy day fund for incidences of that nature.
Rival companies might cost you a small fortune throughout the year in many different ways. For example, some firms might decide to take your business to court over a patent or trademark issue. You can limit the chances of that happening by ensuring you always apply for the appropriate protections when designing and releasing new products. You might also end up in front of a judge if the items you sell fail to meet safety regulations. Nobody wants to stunt the growth of their operations by spending time in the courtroom. However, that is something that is almost guaranteed to happen at some point. So, make sure you put some money aside. Otherwise, your business could suffer. Legal issues can arise from:
- Patent disputes
- Immigration audits
- Dissatisfied customers
- And a lot more
Now you know about some of the most common unexpected expenses, you should manage to plan your budget a little better. As mentioned a moment ago, the trick is to make sure you always have more cash than you think the company will require in your accounts. That way, you can deal with any unusual or unforeseen events without causing an adverse effect. So, take some of the information from this page and ensure you’re always ready for every eventuality. When all’s said and done, failing to prepare is like preparing to fail. Those who don’t take these problems seriously are heading for disaster. So, don’t walk blindly behind them hoping for the best. You need to exercise decisive action today if you want your company to succeed well into tomorrow.
By Sharon Jones
There are lots of things you can do, if you have a blog, to grow your readership, but few of them have as many long-lasting returns as reaching out to influencers in your niche, especially if you don’t exactly have a huge budget to work with. Why? Here are a few of the benefits getting in touch with an influencer and forming a lasting relationship with them can bring:
A Boost in Traffic
You might be getting pretty good results with search engine optimisation and guest posting already, but if a popular influencer in your niche includes a link or shout-out to your blog in their work, then you can pretty much guarantee that your traffic will shoot up. Why? Because people care about what influencers think and if they think you’re worth mentioning then people will sit up and take notice.
Boost Your Profile
Being associated with an influencer in your niche will, of course, raise your own profile. Whatever magic it is they have will rub off on you, at least a little, and you’ll be able to capitalize on this to make your blog even more popular. Of course, you’ll only achieve this if you remain on good terms with your niche influencer and put out good work of your own, but still, it’s a great way to set things in motion.
If a niche influencer has good things to say about you, then you can more easily build up trust amongst your readership. This means they are more likely to keep visiting your blog, telling others about its existences and buying the products and services you offer there.
If you reach out to one influencer in your niche and you get to know them well, there’s a very good chance that they’ll introduce you to other influencers in the field, which means you will have access to even more big names, endorsements, and links from some of the best bloggers out there. This is something guaranteed to help your readership grow and boost your business.
Links from high authority websites and blogs – the kind that niche influencers run – is a very good way of improving your own blog’s search engine optimisation. You will probably know that good SEO plays a vital part in being found on Google and other search engines, and that it can be pretty difficult to develop a following without good SEO, so this is a huge benefit to reaching out to an influencer.
Of course, one of the biggest benefits of talking to an influencer is that, if you get to be on good terms with them, then you can pick their brains about how they got to their position, what works for them and what they think you could do to improve. If you listen and take action, then you’ll, in no time at all, have a really great blog that people are flocking to read.
So, there is no doubt that, if you want to build a better blog, you should be reaching out to influencers. However, when you do this, you should do it in a genuine way, not in a way that suggests you’re just out for what you can get – influencers will see right through such an act, and you’ll get nowhere!
By Lina Martinez
If there’s one thing that every business needs, it’s money. Whatever your company does, you won’t get anywhere if you aren’t getting paid for your products or services, if you didn’t know that already then you’re probably in trouble. Most people are going to pay you promptly and you shouldn’t have a problem but some clients will just take their time when it comes to paying. If this starts happening a lot then you’ll run into some serious cash flow problems and struggle to stay afloat. You could also find yourself involved in lengthy legal proceedings. To avoid this, look at our list of reasons that customers aren’t paying you.
Image From Pixabay
Your Invoices Aren’t Clear
People will look for any excuse to delay payment so don’t give them one. A common one is that the invoice isn’t clear enough. If it isn’t made completely clear to the customer exactly how much they have to pay and when they have to pay it by, they’ll use it as an excuse to not give you your money. Invoices can be more complicated than you realize and if you’re trying to make your own you might not be making it straightforward enough for them. Using online invoicing software is a far better solution. You can get professional invoices made up which are simple to understand, so you don’t give anybody a way out of paying. You can also use it to keep track of all of your unpaid invoices so you don’t forget about any payments, customers aren’t going to remind you if you do.
The Terms Aren’t Clear From The Beginning
This is another way that customers will try to get around paying, or at least pay less than they owe. If there is any question about how much they owe you, they’ll argue it for as long as they can. Before you even start doing any work for them, you need to lay out the terms of payment as clearly as possible. Create a quote that lists each specific item and the price for each, and then include a total, with VAT on top. Have them sign the quote so if there is a dispute about the payment later on, you can refer back to the quote and prove that they agreed to that price from the outset.
You Work Without Payment
If you agreed on multiple payments throughout a project and the customer doesn’t pay you for one of them, stop working on the project immediately. Some companies will carry on because they think that the customer will pay it all when they’re finished and if they stop working on the project then they’ll lose money. However, if you carry on without payment, you put yourself in a tricky situation. As soon as you do anything for free, customers are going to think that you’re a pushover and they’ll start taking advantage of you. It actually makes them less likely to pay you because they’ll push it to see what they can get away with. Never do anything for free.
Not getting paid is one of the easiest ways that a business can land itself in trouble, so don’t take no for an answer and make sure you get those invoices in on time.