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SMB Nation has been serving the Bainbridge Island area since 2001, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Keep Your Team on Track by using an Organized Workflow for your Content Marketing

By: Gloria Kopp

If you're often finding that projects are being delivered late, rushed to be completed or just not up to the standard you're expecting, you and your team could benefit greatly from the creation of a clear, organized workflow. Your workflow defines the patterns and processes by which you bring a project from conception to completion, andWorkflow helps ensure that you don't experience these setbacks that exist when there's no organization behind the production process. Follow these steps to start putting together a workflow that is tailored to your team and the projects you're working on, and watch the levels of quality and speed in your work soar.
 
Get on the same page with an Editorial Calendar
It's vital that you lay out all of the work that needs to be completed currently and those projects that are upcoming. An editorial calendar helps you see the overall big picture at a glance, and also allows you to drill down to more details about each individual project. Having this schedule available for each project ensures that the entire team is on the same page, no matter what someone's role is towards the completion of the project, they are able to follow the progress of the team as a whole. It gives each member a certain level of responsibility and accountability, pushing them to stay within the timelines set out. Share your calendar on Trello with your entire team, that way you know for certain that everyone is in the loop with what's coming up.
 
Batch Processing Methods make things more efficient
Speed things up by using batch processing to complete similar tasks, rather than doing each task on its own. You'll get more done in less time, helping to keep your projects on track for completion as scheduled. When you're working on optimizing your SEO, check out Yoast for information and courses on all levels of SEO. Improve your skills in SEO, and you'll find many other tasks much easier to complete. When you're looking to utilize your social media outlets, but don't have the time to dedicate to this task, Buffer is your resource for managing this. Schedule posts ahead of time and track the performance of your content easily.
 
Create A Workflow Checklist to ensure nothing is missed
Checklists are important, because you can set out exactly what needs to be done, and delegate each task to a team member. When you do this, there's no confusion about who is responsible for what, and what tasks are left to be done. Copywriting and proofreading are tedious and time consuming tasks that can be delegated to the professional teams at Assignment Help Canberra and Resumention, for fast, meticulous and quality work.
 
Work backwards, starting with your deadline
When creating your workflow schedule, first determine when your project will need to be completed, then work backwards to set the milestones along the way. It's much easier to set up your timeline this way, as opposed to working forwards towards your completion date. And, deadlines for each task need to be clearly defined with a specific date or time. Vague deadlines, like 'next week', can almost guarantee that the task won't be completed until midnight on the last day of the week. If you've got deadlines for sending out mass email blasts, Mail Chimp is a simple way to set up those emails ahead of time, so that you can be sure those deadlines aren't missed.
 
Prioritize projects
Each member of the team may have different ideas as to what project is more urgent or higher priority than another. It's up to you to prioritize each project and make the team aware of this hierarchy. The most important projects need to have the focus of everyone involved. If there is an overwhelming amount of work to be done, you may want to look at outsourcing some of the content creation to a professional at Essayroo. It's a great way to stay within your timeline for your most important projects and ensure you're getting high quality content.
 
Morning scrums help set the agenda for that day
Before the workday gets underway, a quick scrum can help you highlight the day's goals, get everyone on the same page and remind the team of the tasks that are next to be completed. It can also give you a chance to go over what's already been done and get updates on task deadlines that are approaching, to keep those team members accountable and on track. When video content is on deck for the day, Piksel can help you get this task completed, leaving you with a captivating final product.
 
Bullet Journal your workflow
A simple and flexible way to track and plan everything you've got to get done is by using a bullet journal. This organizational system can be totally customized to whatever suits you and your projects best. Keep ideas you find organized in here too, so you can easily refer back to them. Inbound will find and send you the best marketing articles for you to draw inspiration and ideas from.
 
Stay on track with your workflow plan
It can sometimes be easy to let your focus shift onto something different, but when you've got a set schedule and hard deadlines, it's important to stay on task with the project at hand. If not, you may quickly find yourself in the midst of several projects, but not getting much accomplished at all. It's much more productive to stay focused on one single project at a time, devoting your time and energy to that, then moving on to the next only when that first one is totally complete. Boomessays can help you complete the editing task at hand, so you can start moving onto what's next on your plate. Also remember to stick to the chain you've set out for you and your team. Jumping past steps can lead to confusion, missed tasks and complete lack of organization.
 
Getting and keeping everyone within a team on the same page throughout the completion of a project is vital to the quality and ultimate completion of that project. Organizing your workflow helps you ensure that you can get this done.
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Business 101: A reading list for lifelong learners

biz101 draft3

Ready to level up your working knowledge of business? Here’s what to read now — and next.

Business 101, with Nilofer Merchant

First, read these 2 foundational books…
1. The Change Masters
Rosabeth Moss Kanter
Free Press, 1985

“A foundational book for your collection. When a colleague recently switched careers, I lent her this incredibly dog-eared book from college days. Rosabeth Moss Kanter helped coined the idea and term ’empowerment’ in the 1970s, a sure sign she was ahead of her time. Even though The Change Masters was published forty years ago, it’s relevant. Why? Because all progress is made by those that are change masters. Become one.”

2. Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing without Organizations
Clay Shirky
Penguin, 2008

“A few years back, I took out Clay Shirky’s book and found it filled with scribbles. While it’s almost passé now to talk of how Obama organized a large community to sweep into the presidency, Shirky’s book is textbook quality for what will happen next. It points to a new truth: Today, connected individuals can do what once only large organizations could. So look past the timeliness of his stories to see the timeless.”

Then, try these 4 to understand current needs…

1. Opposable Mind: Winning through Integrative Thinking
Roger Martin
Harvard Business Review, 2009

“I’m convinced that the way we create an abundant future of prosperity will require a global redesign of what is possible. And I think Roger Martin’s idea here could be key. When you hold two ideas as opposites, you’ll never find a way for both things to be true. But to go forward and reconcile some deep divides we have, we’re going to have to find new solutions to old problems through new thinking. Martin’s book is like yoga for the mind.”

2. Redesigning Leadership (Simplicity: Design, Technology, Business, Life)
John Maeda
MIT Press, 2011

“The real question is: How will we reinvent the world around us? Well, fundamentally, it will involve having folks take the big step away from just being themselves (the thing we all know best) and join in doing something with others (the people we fear may let us down). John Maeda’s book captures a modern leader’s challenge to switch gears and become a social, collaborative leader.”

3. The Difference
Scott E. Page
Princeton University Press, 2010

“Complex systems turn out to be adaptive and resilient, and therefore thriving, systems. Sounds like something our world needs more of, right? See how a math theorist argues for including difference –- that is, cognitive difference — into our lives, our workplaces and ultimately what we create. The value of this difference is a proven truth, not a feel-good mantra, for how you shape both better ideas and new solutions. It’s going to be central to what happens next.”

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Webroot/Ninja Integration

Expanded Security Service Offering to include DNS Protection and Integrated Console Allows NinjaRMM Clients to Reduce Complexity of Cybersecurity Management While Growing their Revenue Stream

About the Partnership:

  • NinjaRMM has been partnering with Webroot since May 2016.
  • NinjaRMM’s addition of Webroot’s SecureAnywhere® DNS Protection to its portfolio will provide customers protection against malicious websites with minimal complexity for the service provider and the end consumer. The product is controlled via the Webroot Global Site Manager used by the endpoint solution, offering a single console to set company-wide browsing controls and internet-use tracking.
  • In addition to SecureAnywhere DNS Protection, NinjaRMM offers its customers Webroot’s SecureAnywhere Business Endpoint Protection, providing MSPs the ability to offer multiple layers of protection and increase revenue.
  • The integration of Webroot’s industry-leading solutions into Ninja’s RMM platform provides one location for management and reporting, saving time and reducing the overall cost of administration.

Ninja is now HIPPA Compliant – Ninja’s focus on Healthcare will give the ability for agency’s to be sure of compliance standards from its platform.

Release 2.14 – Just completed

Third-Party Patching (beta): Fully managed patching of 100+ applications. Includes common office applications like Adobe products, browsers, Java, and more. For more information on how to access the beta, please refer to the Ninja Support Community.

Splashtop for Windows and Mac: Remote access your Win/Mac devices through a single-pane integration with NinjaRMM. Easily deploy Splashtop to your desired organizations.

NEW Mac Scripting: New out-of-box scripts for Macs. You can now enable SSH, re-apply user permissions and more directly from NinjaRMM console.

  • Enable/Disable Firewall
  • Disable Firewall
  • Reset printing
  • Empty trash
  • Flush DNS
  • Kill core audio
  • Auto updates off
  • Purge disk cache
  • Reapply user permissions
  • Reset launcher service
  • Repair disk permissions
  • Repair SSH
  • Repair TeamViewer
    • Reinitializes Teamviewer, kills the service and restarts it

Windows OS Keys Report: New reporting section for Windows OS keys to make software asset management easier.

Remote Command Line: Ability to run commands as currently logged-in user.For full release notes, please refer to our community page here.

 

Ninja

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How to Start a Business With (Almost) No Money

How to start a business

 

By: Jayson Demers

VIP CONTRIBUTOR

MARCH 21, 2016

You’re excited to start a business. Maybe you have an idea, or you’re just fascinated with the idea of launching and growing your own enterprise. You’re willing to take some risks, like leaving your current job or going without personal revenue for a while. But there’s one logistical hurdle stopping you: You don’t have much money.


On the surface, this seems like a major problem, but a lack of personal capital shouldn’t stop you from pursuing your dreams. In fact, it’s entirely possible to start and grow a business with almost no personal financial investment whatsoever -- if you know what you’re doing.

Why a business needs money

First, let’s take a look at why a business needs money in the first place. There’s no uniform “startup” fee for building a business, so different businesses will have different needs. It’s important to first estimate how much you need before you start finding alternative methods to fund your company.


Consider the following uses:

  • Licenses and permits. Depending on your region, you may need special paperwork and registry to operate.
  • Supplies. Are you buying raw materials? Do you need computers and/or other devices?
  • Equipment. Do you need specialized machinery or software?
  • Office space. This is a huge expense, and you can't neglect things like Internet, utilities costs, janitorial services and whether to outsource back office tasks, like payroll and invoicing.
  • Associations, subscriptions, memberships. What publications and affiliations will you subsribe to every month?
  • Operating expenses. Dig into the nooks and crannies here, and don’t forget about marketing.
  • Legal fees. Are you consulting a lawyer throughout your business-development process?
  • Employees, freelancers and contractors. If you can’t do it alone, you’ll need people on your payroll.

With that said, you have two main paths of starting a business with less money: lowering your costs or increasing your available capital from outside sources. You have three options here:

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Q&A: How Fortinet’s Security Fabric Creates New Opportunity for Channel Partners

Joe Sykora, Fortinet’s Vice President of Americas Channels and Enhanced Technologies, gives his perspective on how an integrated security architecture like Fortinet’s Security Fabric creates new opportunities for solution providers. Joe Sykora, Fortinet’s Vice President of Americas Channels and Enhanced Technologies, gives his perspective on how an integrated security architecture like Fortinet’s Security Fabric creates new opportunities for solution providers. 


Why is the idea of a security fabric so important to network security in this current environment?

Organizations can’t just keep adding new, siloed security solutions that don’t talk to other devices on their network, banner ad security fabric 220x150 002and that require separate management and collaboration tools. What organizations need today is a collaborative system of tools that work together to monitor their network, share information, and respond to threats no matter where they occur.

The Fortinet Security Fabric allows us to take all of our tools and integrate them into a single, interactive security framework. This collaborative ecosystem also includes third-party partners in cloud, software-defined networking, sandboxing, testing, security information and event management (SIEM), and Single Sign On technologies, as well as support for the services provided by our worldwide family of channel partners.

How does Fortinet’s Security Fabric benefit Fortinet’s global partner network of distributors and solution providers?

Because of its critical and complex nature, security continues to be one of the largest opportunities for the channel. Partners that can plan, design, deploy, and optimize an integrated security offering are finding a growing demand for their skills. 

By tying traditional security appliances and emerging technologies together into an integrated security fabric, partners can help their customers collect and respond to more actionable intelligence, synchronize threat responses, and centralize the creation, distribution, and orchestration of their security management and analysis. This broad visibility and open-standards approach provided by the Fortinet Security Fabric allows solution providers to implement more automation to focus on the alerts that really matter.

How is Fortinet’s Fabric Ready Partner program different from the alliance partner programs we see other vendors promoting?

Like many partner programs, Fortinet’s Fabric Ready Partner Program brings together best-in-class technology alliance partners. But unlike those other approaches, Fortinet’s approach actually allows our channel partners to deliver pre-integrated, end-to-end security offerings ready for deployment.

And for our channel partners, extending the functionality and intelligence of the Fortinet Security Fabric vision with an open and cooperative ecosystem of partner solutions means they can more easily:

  • Deliver more effective, more responsive security solutions that leverage the collaborative power of the Fortinet Security Fabric
  • Speed business outcomes with integrated ecosystem solutions that address customers’ needs.  Leverage Fortinet’s Fabric-Ready seal of approval to build trust with customers and instill confidence that the solutions work
  • Deliver solutions with faster time-to-deployment to customers, with reduced technical support burden & costs due to pre-validation.

Download our eBook, How the Fortinet Security Fabric Addresses Today’s Top Security Concerns.

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