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Monthly Archives: October 2016

Small business chat update – Jennifer Martin

Small business chat update – Jennifer Martin

Welcome to a catch-up with one of our newer interviewees, Jennifer Martin, who runs Zest Business Consulting. Jennifer joined the interviews in September 2014, and did her first update in October 2015. At that point, here’s where she wanted to be by now: “I see myself spending more of my time giving presentations, seminars, and being hired as a keynote speaker. I will have a program that I offer as a download online. I will double my income again and travel every month somewhere interesting to work with clients. Oh, yes, and I’ll work fewer hours, too”. Those were some very positive affirmations: read on to find out how she’s doing with them …

Hello again, Jennifer, and welcome back to Libro Towers! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

Well, I guess the answer is a little yes and a little no.

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

I have continued to grow as a Presenter and Speaker and my revenues from this part of my business has in fact grown. This past year I provided keynote presentation, meeting facilitation, or trainings to so many wonderful companies and organizations. I sometimes can’t believe that I get paid to have so much fun entertaining, educating, and just being my crazy self while presenting value to groups like the US Department of Commerce, The State Humane Association, The University of Washington Club and the Los Angeles Community College District (among others).

I also worked this past year  as a Business Coach/Mentor and led a number of live and virtual group programs created to help business owners get more of what they want (business growth, life balance etc.). What I didn’t do was create a completely digital version of my programs to sell as DIY downloads.

The biggest change that took place this year wasn’t in the financial arena ( I didn’t double my revenues) but in the way I approach business growth as well as some changes to my point of view in my mentoring and teaching.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

This year I’m in the works of authoring a book (my second) called Loving Your Business to Wealth. This book shares the successes that business owners and business people have when they shift their perspective from I or Me to the collective We or Us and intentionally act from a place of love in their business interactions.

From the way a company treats it’s employees to the way the company as a whole makes an impact on their communities and the world as a whole. Everything that I’m doing now feels very Love and Community based. This past year I’ve had a chance to really see the impact of what spreading more love through your business can do to help good Leaders become great leaders and companies and organizations grow through this simple concept.

Any more hints and tips for people?

Be intentional about what you want
Commit to it daily
Tell lots of people about what you want to create in the world
Join an accountability group
Consider joining me for Conscious Business Owner Camps and Enlightened Business Retreats

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

What legacy would you like your business to leave behind?

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

I will definitely continue to offer leadership and employee training, speak to large groups, and travel all around the world teaching people in business how to spread more love in the world through the work they do and the companies they work for/ or own, starting with their own self-love and then taking the concept out through every interaction and each person they interact with.

I’ve got a couple of ideas for websites I might explore that will help people connect more with one another so everyone can feel like a part of a community or family of like-minded people.

I will launch my Enlightened Entrepreneurs Retreats and My Enlightened Leaders Club and finish my book- Loving Your Business to Wealth – An Enlightened Leaders Guide to Spreading More Love in the World

And lastly I will have a ton of fun in everything that I do and allow everyday to be filled with gratitude.

It’s interesting how often people re-focus from making more money to taking a different perspective on their life and work – and I love Jennifer’s Bonus Question – it’s one to have a really good think about, isn’t it! Best of luck to Jennifer for her upcoming year with Zest Business Consulting!

Email Jennifer

And finally, Jennifer’s free guidebook

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat

 

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How do you create a two-line figure caption and a one-line entry in your Table of Figures? Word 2010, 2013, 2016

This one was suggested by a regular reader of this blog in a comment, and I promise to write about it quite a long time ago.

This is a very specific situation where the style guide for your organisation or publisher demands that you have Figure and Table captions set out over two lines, but you want the Table of Figures to have one line including both Figure label and caption, so it looks something like this:

caption with two lines table of figures with one

How not to create a two-line figure caption

The natural inclination is to use the Return key to split the Figure label and caption, either by entering it all in one line in Insert Caption then splitting it up or using Insert Caption to add the title, hitting Enter then adding the caption. However, when you create your Table of Figures, it either won’t pick up the second line at all or will create two entries in the Table of Figures:

incorrect two line caption and table of figures

How to create a two-line figure caption so the Table of Figures only has one line per figure

This is how you do it correctly. The key is to use the soft line return (Shift+Enter) rather than a hard, paragraph return (Enter).

Place the cursor where you want to insert your caption and go to the References tab, Insert Caption:

Insert caption

Make sure the figure label reads as you want it to (adjust the label to Table, etc.) and then hit OK

Insert caption word

Place the cursor at the end of the figure label and hit Shift+Enter to start a new line:

Adding a new line to your caption word

Type in your caption:

word second line of caption

ALTERNATIVELY

Type the whole caption into the Insert Caption box and press OK:

word insert whole caption before splitting

Place the cursor at the start of the caption and press Shift+Enter to move it down to the next line:

4b-split-whole-caption

Now create your Table of Figures using References, Insert Table of Figures and you should have one entry per Figure:

caption with two lines table of figures with one

This article has taught you how to create two-line figure captions which show on one line in your Table of Figures.

If you have found this useful, please comment using the comment box below and/or share using the social media sharing buttons. Thank you!

Other useful posts on this blog

How to create a Table of Contents

Table of Figures and Table of Tables

How to update your Table of Contents, Table of Tables or Table of Figures

Editing and the Table of Contents

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2016 in Copyediting, Short cuts, Students, Word, Writing

 

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Small business chat update – Leila Rasheed

Small business chat update – Leila Rasheed

Welcome to a catch-up with the lovely writer and teacher of writing, Leila Rasheed. I’ve known Leila personally for almost ten years, and I got her into this interview series right back at the start, in July 2011  and then did updates in September 2012, October 2013 , October 2014, and most recently, October 2015. While she’s not a traditional self-employed person, I’m more than happy to have Leila on board the interview schedule and to let people know about the wonderful projects she’s involved with. Here’s where she wanted to be by now this time last year:  “I hope Megaphone will be coming towards the end of the project, and that I’ll have gained some insight into how to go forward in making the children’s publishing world more diverse and equal”. How’s that all been going? Let’s find out!

Hello again, Leila – lovely to have you back! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

Hello, Liz! I think so!

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

Megaphone has been as successful as I could have hoped, and more. The project is supporting five fantastic new writers: learn more on www.megaphonewrite.com. Support from other writers and from the publishing industry has been widespread and generous.  It is great to see the participants being recognised for their writing in other areas too (https://megaphonewrite.com/2016/09/26/megaphone-participants-recent-success/). We have had a lot of press coverage; most recently we were filmed by ITV News Central for an upcoming programme on the region, diversity and literacy. Megaphone has even gone international; I’ve been invited to the Singapore Writers’ Festival and one of the panels I’m appearing on is focused on diversity.
There are stresses, but most have been predictable. On the whole, this has been a wonderfully positive experience. It can be deeply frustrating being an ethnic minority writer. It is good to feel as if you’re doing something to help. You can follow us on twitter: @MegaphoneWrite or you can follow the blog: www.megaphonewrite.com.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

I’m constantly learning as I seek feedback from all involved, and evaluate the project on an ongoing basis, I can already see ways of improving Megaphone for next year. For example, feedback almost immediately showed that the masterclasses could have been a whole day, instead of just two hours – that’s a change I’m going to try to make.

And … where do you see yourself and your projects in a(nother) year’s time?

I hope I will have the fundraising process for Megaphone 2.0 well under way.

I’m so pleased with how Megaphone and its authors are doing – this is such important work and I know the effort Leila has been putting into it. I’m always happy to share this news!

Leila’s own website is at www.leilarasheed.com

Megaphone is a new writer development scheme, funded by the Arts Council and the Publishers’ Association, making Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic voices heard in British children’s literature. 
#EverybodyIn – support inclusive books

 

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 

 
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Posted by on October 22, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat

 

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What questions should I ask my beta readers? #amwriting

Using beta readers is vital for any book, fiction or non-fiction. But you have to use them well and in a focused way, so that you can work with their feedback and make sure your book is the best it can be. Here are some questions you can ask your beta readers (these are based on questions I’ve been asked and questions I’ve asked people about my non-fiction books)

What is a beta reader?

A beta reader is someone you get to test-read your book before it goes through the final stages towards publication. You can have several rounds of beta readers, of course, but they generally come somewhere before your final rewrite and edit:

  1. Plan
  2. First draft
  3. Second draft
  4. BETA READERS
  5. Third draft
  6. Edit
  7. Fourth draft and preparation for publishing (layout artist)
  8. Proofread
  9. Publish

Note: You might have a substantive edit before or just after the beta readers; if you have one after that stage, it’s an idea to add another beta read in afterwards, which would give you this:

  1. Plan
  2. First draft
  3. Second draft
  4. BETA READERS
  5. Third draft
  6. Substantive edit
  7. Fourth draft
  8. BETA READERS
  9. Fifth draft
  10. Edit
  11. Sixth draft and preparation for publishing (layout artist)
  12. Proofread
  13. Publish

Questions for fiction books

Questions for fiction readers will revolve around plot, character and setting:

What is your very first thought upon reading the first paragraph?

Do the characters seem realistic / attractive / interesting to you?

Did you spot any plot holes or huge errors? (I would ask the beta reader to mark up any small issues along the way)

Did you enjoy the story?

Did the pace of the story flag or go too fast at any point?

What made you want to keep reading?

What did you think of the ending?

What did you think of the setting? Would you have liked more or less description?

Did the characters speak naturally? If not, what could I do to improve this?

What was your favourite bit of the book?

What was your least favourite bit of the book?

If it’s a book in a genre: did this fit the way this genre works? Was there anything that jarred with the usual way this genre works?

Questions for non-fiction books

These questions will be slightly different and will relate to the audience for the book and the information it provides.

What do you think about the way this book is arranged?

What did you think the aim of the book was?  Do you think it achieves that aim? What could help it to achieve that aim (even) better?

Who did you feel the book was aimed at?

Was the book personally useful to you? Can you think of people it would be useful to?

Were any sections unclear or confusing? What could I do to make them better?

Were any sections particularly good? Why do you think that is?

Questions for all beta readers

Some questions are universal:

Would you recommend this book to a friend or contact?

Who do you think this book was written for?

What kind of person would most enjoy this book?

I hope you’ve found this post interesting and/or helpful. Maybe you’re a beta reader and this has helped you to do that job! Do share any other questions you ask or have been asked in the comments so this can build into the most useful resource possible – and please share using the buttons below, too! Thank you!

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2016 in Reading, Writing

 

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Small business chat update – Alison Mead

Small business chat update – Alison Mead

Welcome to the latest catch up with Aly Mead  from Silicon Bullet. One of my original interviewees from 2011, we  caught up with her in August 2012 and again in September 2013. She had to skip a year for personal reasons in 2014 but came back in October 2015, and we were very glad to have her back. At that point, here’s what she wanted to be doing by now: “Keeping the work/life balance going is my aim for the next year.  Working hard but taking breaks, too.  I love building my network marketing team with Forever Living too: training and supporting team members doesn’t particularly feel like work, so I will be concentrating on growing this part of my business over the next 12 months”. Did she achieve this aim? Read on to find out!

Hello again, Aly! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

I am in a good place at the moment, with a better work life balance and feeling quite content in life and work.  We have a new policy in our life of trying to fill our time with more experiences and less ‘things’ which means more trips, making time to visit people, and trying to take more breaks from work.  We got a puppy last year, which really takes both Paul and me away from our desks and let’s us out and about – and she is a gorgeous puppy, although I am biased!

My business is giving me the time and the finances to be able to follow this new lifestyle, and the bonus is I really enjoy what I do too.

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

I’m spending more time on my Forever Living business and less on my bookkeeping and accounts business.  There is still a good mix of the two and I never turn an interesting job down for Bookkeeping Training, but I am not going out promoting that business so much anymore.

Paul’s work for Dublin has also continued this year, which has really stabilised our income.

I have welcomed some fantastic people to my Forever Living team from all over the UK, and increasingly from Eastern Europe all from my blog.  I now have team members from Hungary, Poland and Romania as well as North Lanarkshire, Southampton, Dudley and North Humberside, amongst others, and a huge wide range of ages from early 20s to 70s.  I love how the business suits people from so many backgrounds, men and women, and I thoroughly enjoy coaching and supporting my team members old and new.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

I’ve been at this business so long now that I feel very comfortable in what I do.  What I need to remember is to always be willing to try new things, push boundaries, and be willing to go out of my comfort zone.  Also with Forever it is so important not to make assumptions about people.  Just be open and honest with any enquiries you get and let people make their own decisions on if they are interested.  My best team members come from the least likely enquirers!

I have learned though that some people join Forever Living and don’t want to be coached.  We have excellent resources available for new team members in the form of videos, training, and using Skype for mentoring sessions, but some people join and just want to do the business their own way, and approaches of support and help are rejected.  I have had to learn that that’s OK – no one HAS to take up the support offered.  I need to change my mindset to look on this as a positive, as it leaves me the time to help those that do want my support.

Any more hints and tips for people?

I now blog more with hints and tips which can help anyone in Network Marketing, not just Forever, so I suppose my tip is be open, honest and helpful and treat others how you would want to be treated, then you will find your business will grow and you will attract like-minded people.

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

Do you feel your business gets any benefit from using Twitter?

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

I’d be very happy in the next year to continue my trend from the last year.  Primarily I’m looking for more people who are looking for something a bit different in life who might want a Forever Living business like my own, whether you just want to join and do it your own way, or if you need more hands-on coaching and support.

I have already booked some experiences for next year, like seeing Johnny Peacock in the Para Athletics in London next July.  I plan to make sure I always have something great like that to look forward to!

What a great attitude to have, and it’s something I’m doing, too – we’ve been in business for a similar amount of time, and there’s a lot to be said for having the confidence and experience to be able to tailor your work so you get enough time to actually enjoy life – I managed to train for and complete my marathon this year by taking the same attitude. I love Aly’s tip about sharing your expertise – I’ve found my number of visitors on my website has grown again since I restarted blogging more frequently with free Word, business and transcription tips. It’s not giving your expertise away so much as sharing what you know to help other people, and getting known as a good person yourself. Long may this continue for both of us!

Find the Silicon Bullet website and blog online, and for the Forever Living side of things have a look at the Facebook page.

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat

 

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How do I include quotations in my document? Should I change their language and spelling?

How do I include quotations in my document? Should I change their language and spelling?

Thank you to Vedrana Vojkvić for suggesting this topic to me via Twitter. She asked me for my input on a question she was discussing: what do we do if we are following UK spelling conventions and there’s a direct quotation that follows US spelling conventions? She also introduced the idea of [sic], asking to clarify that that is used only for actual errors in quotations, not just to highlight use of a different variety of English.

How do I include quotations in American English in my British English document?

This, of course, works both ways. If you are following US spelling and grammar conventions in your document and you need to quote something from a British English source, or you’re writing UK English and want to quote from an American source, should you change the spelling in your quotation to match the standard you are using in your main text?

Short answer: no.

Quotations are quotations from the original text. They should be quoted as they are, in the original.

When can I change a quotation?

There are a few occasions when you can and should change a quotation.

Note: every change you make to a quotation should be placed in [square brackets] to make sure it is clear that you have made the change.

  1. To make the grammar match the sentence in which the quotation is included. For example, you might write this: “Smith (2013) instructs the runner to ‘[go] with the flow, not setting off too fast’ (33), which is good advice,” where the original quotation ran, “A good runner goes with the flow, not setting off too fast”.
  2. When you need to explain something: “Smith (2013: 43) further states, ‘Those people [the running club members] can be very supportive’ in her seminal work.”
  3. When you need to cut text from the original quotation: “In this long passage, Smith (2012: 33) tells us to, ‘Watch out for your own over-excitement […] you must rein things in’.”
  4. If the quotations are in very archaic English and you have updated them into modern English OR the person you are quoting had a very individual use of punctuation or spelling and you have regularised it – in this case, you MUST state that you have done this in your introduction or a “Note about the quotations” at the beginning of your document. I would prefer to add modern English versions after the original in the first example and leave the quotations in the original in the second example.
  5. If you have translated the quotations out of their original language yourself – in this case, make sure to make a note of this in your introduction or a “Note about the quotations,” and if you have only translated some of the quotations, put a note [translated by the researcher] after those you have translated.

If you choose to emphasise something in the quotation that was not emphasised in the original, you must say that you have done this: “Smith says, ‘Everyone can run at their own speed and should not be pushed too far’ [emphasis added by the researcher].” (If the emphasis appears in the original, it’s good practice to add [emphasis in the original] after the quotation instead, to make that clear.)

When can I use [sic] in a quotation?

Almost never! I think that’s one for another article … However, to answer the original question, you would not need to use [sic] when quoting in one language (variety) in a text that is in another language (variety).

The golden rule of including quotations in your text

Always, always, always reference them fully so the reader can go and find them in the original!

This article has discussed how to insert quotations into a text, including what to do if they are in a different variety of English, whether you should change the spellings of quotations and when it is acceptable to change a quotation.

If you have enjoyed this article and/or found it useful, please do add a comment and/or share using the buttons below. Thank you!

 
 

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Small business chat update – Nicky Lloyd Greame

Small business chat update – Nicky Lloyd Greame

Here’s a Small Business Update with Nicky Lloyd Greame from the business coaching and mentoring company People and Potential, who we met first in July 2014. and caught up with in September 2015. At that point, she’d been in business for a couple of years and was settling in: this was her plan for the upcoming year – “I have just developed a new concept which will launch in the next few months, all about healthy, daily exercises for the mind.  I have a series of courses and products around it and I plan on rolling them all out throughout the next 6 months to a year. I now also have a new member of the team who will be helping me deliver all this new training to corporate clients and members of the public alike. Oh, and watch this space for the new improved website launch”. Let’s find out how she’s doing now!


Hello Nicky! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?


Yes, I actually think I am – only with bonuses.  Business is still growing: both my personal and corporate client base is growing.  I have just started designing a new online stress management course, which is really exciting.  I now have an amazing associate who I’m looking forward to expanding my business with – he specialises in hypnotherapy (amongst other things), so we plan on merging our skills to offer a variety of unique solutions for those struggling with their mental health – but for whom for some reason the NHS offering is not working.


What has changed and what has stayed the same?


My niche has remained Mental Health – particularly helping people with stress and anxiety.  I’ve started helping children a lot more, too, so I’m hoping to start doing that in a more group-based setting (offering workshops in schools and academies, etc.)… oh, and I have a book almost finished – the no-sweat guide to less stress (working title!!).  Exciting times!


What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?


I’ve invested a lot in my practical learning this year – I feel it is really important to keep learning – so this past year has been skills such as creating online courses, writing a book and generally how to position myself as the go-to person in my field.  As for what I wish I’d known last year – to be honest, it’s that its OK to invest in yourself – in fact its better for your business.  A year ago, I was plagued with guilt about spending that kind of money on my learning – now I recognise that it’s an essential investment into myself, ny business and my clients.  It allows me to deliver the best service possible.


Any more hints and tips for people?

Keep learning – diarise at least an hour or two a week for research and learning.  Make it a priority – feeding your mind helps feed your soul.

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

How do you measure your success?  And how do you reward it?


And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?


I would like to have a best-selling book, at least two online courses and to have been able to have helped many more clients – particularly children and teenagers – through workshops in schools.


I love the way that Nicky’s gradually developing her offering while sticking to the core area that she wants to focus on, and having an associate who can add in extra services is a real bonus, too. I look forward to being able to link to her book next time!


You can find Nicky and People & Potential onlline at www.PeopleAndPotential.com and you can email Nicky, find her on LinkedIn, or call her on 01924 361738.

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 

 
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Posted by on October 8, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat

 

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