Business People and Students Have More in Common Than You Think

You may be under the impression that there is not a lot in common between business people and students. So, compare a 10-year-old dyslexic student who has specific failing points in school to a company about to close. One of the first things they have in common is that they feel blocked in and the world is telling them everything they are doing wrong. They both have lousy reports, feel like they are running out of time and they appear to be putting in huge amounts of effort for very little results.

Now compare a 13-year-old student enjoying new life experiences and demands to a business also having a sudden growth spurt. The teenager is suddenly part of a much bigger organization of sorts. They have many skills to learn and new teachers to understand. We can easily compare this to a business that has abruptly grown with new employees, new products, new research and a lot more people to manage.

Also compare a 15-year-old exam student who has done great and is heading for the final stages of school to a multi million dollar project that needs a very targeted strategy. You are swiftly deciding what skills you need for your career, which subjects you are going to take forward and how you are going to get there. With a multi million dollar project you are effectively making all of the same decisions.

You could start to compare a 17-year-old exam student’s overwhelming workload and study schedule to a company that dramatically finds itself in the media spotlight in a positive manner. Both can quite easily start to hyper ventilate and panic. I have worked with companies whose telephone lines melted down under the strain and staff were not able to get an available line out of their offices for over a week.

At this stage I wish to point out why life coaching is a waste of time. Life coaching does not work, cram schools are a waste of money and 99% of private tuition is a very short term solution. Continuity is vital to sustainability and you must pick up the juggling balls and be prepared to help directly long term when needed, not just at the start.

I profile the elements that matter and create methods around them. Like how people tick, what they need now and how they need it. But what is more vital is the strategy that goes with it. I work with a cross section of people aged from 18 month old toddlers to 72 year olds. They are from hundreds of different backgrounds worldwide, stages in life and business varieties.

I am strange in that I take on clients for life. It is very rewarding to start working with people when they are 10 and now I am introducing them to their first real world business internships at 16. The stories are no less dramatic in the business world. When I have gone in to restructure companies that were about to close the doors I still support their growth several years later. They got out of the red but went through growing pains and I am still needed as a safety net.

Many people say things like “with success comes new challenges and with age comes new issues” but life coaching, cram schools and most private tuition is just short term crisis management that never sticks around long enough to help long term.

Much of my success is down to developing methods that allow me to profile people. Take the 5-year-old with language development issues, the 15-year-old with asperger’s syndrome and the 45-year-old’s business and family issues. In all of these types of cases I get sonic speed results because I focus on what they need right there and then. There’s a development path so it is a combination of understanding timescales and Purple Success methods.

Here is a limitation that I have found with traditional education system teachers around the world. All of my team have been on specific career paths so they can actually write a letter of introduction for a job or a course for a student but most teachers have never done this and most career guidance teachers do not actually have business careers. Also, schools do not teach goals and goal setting and you are not going anywhere unless you have a goal to achieve. The real golden nugget is to continually set new goals.

Things to Take Note Of When Buying Sonic Producer

Finding a good and cheap solution for computer generated music is rather difficult. Hundreds of software are available, some of which are even available free of cost to the enthusiasts. Sonic Producer claims to stand out in this niche by providing a solid platform for all the music producing needs of a small group. The solution provides an easy to use interface which can be used to make melodious beats to go with the rest of the symphony. I will review the important characteristics of this platform outlining the advantages of such a system and the disadvantages associated.

I have used Sonic Producer for a couple of months now as a reviewer for an online music magazine. I was pointed to it by a fellow editor and I thought to give it a whirl and give my opinion on the system. The most striking feature of the system is the ability to quickly generate beats using presets available through the interface. The member’s area comes bundled with a lot of resources for learning how to make music, understand what production is all about and judging which beat is truly outstanding and which are just bad.

The site has a nice collection of video tutorials which can help you to learn how to play drums and guitar. Starting at the very beginning, the instruments are explained in details and how they behave under different touches. Most of the emulated instruments that come with the package are capable of producing good quality electronic music. Some expansive keyboards and drums are provided with the sequencers and equalizers.

I would recommend that they redo the videos from scratch. Although the audio quality is excellent in these videos they are obviously not recorded by professionals and I sometimes felt at a loss in following what they were trying to show. Being in business for more than a couple of years now, they still have not installed phone support and rely on the more mundane methods of emailing and forum support which can take time and usually left unanswered for days. In the meantime I was able to find the answers elsewhere. The web site interface needs a facelift as it looks bland compared to some of the competitors of Sonic Producer.

Launching a good platform demands that the people running the show makes support available at all times. Lacking severely in this department the website does offer an interesting mix of tools and resources for anyone who wants to learn to produce music using the old method of self study. The other factor is cost which is at the low ends of such online solutions so that may be the deciding f actor for most of the people.

On-Demand CRM – Integration Hub for the Small Business or Enterprise Department

There is an interesting phenomenon happening in the small and medium business segment. The widespread adoption of on-demand or software as a service (saas) CRM, led by Salesforce.com, and followed by companies such as NetSuite and RightNow Technologies.

Well, that’s not really new.

What is new is the expanded use of saas CRM software within these mini-enterprises, whether independent businesses or smaller divisions or departments of larger corporations, as their principal business platform. Since saas CRM manages the lifeblood of the business, sales and customers, and is increasingly more user friendly and flexible, it is becoming the preferred method for companies to manage their business.

As a result, it is also becoming the de facto integration hub, or SOA enabler, for the smaller enterprise.

A case in point is the experience of a well-known educational products sales company. It’s parent company sells educational toys through retailers. However, it launched a division that sells education-oriented items to schools and school districts, such as a handheld screen-based interactive tool that uses story narratives to teach English proficiency to non-native English speakers. This newer division established a territory sales model, with geographically-based sales executives selling to school districts in their area.

The main corporate entity has only a handful of account managers who sell to large retailers such as Wal-Mart and Toys’r’Us. Whereas it is geared towards a retail sales model and related B2B IT infrastructure, the newer division had the infrastructure needs of a territory-based direct sales model. They required a CRM application to track leads, opportunities, and closed sales, and because of the reduced bandwidth of this smaller business unit, they required the efficiency gains of an automated commission calculating application.

With no dedicated IT resources (IT resources are tied to corporate and are available “on-loan” to the new division), and a need to ramp-up quickly, the division chose to bring the CRM and commission calculation functionality of the on-demand model. They chose Salesforce.com and Xactly Corporation, respectively, to fulfill these functions. The one on-premise application they had access to was Oracle Financials for accounting.

The missing piece was to integrate these applications together. They chose to go with a packaged integration platform, adopting their subscription-based pricing model and on-premise software.

In addition to being the CRM platform for the new division, Salesforce.com is also serving as the de facto “enterprise service bus” to incorporate the accounting functionality of Oracle Financials, and to trigger Xactly to do it’s job of calculating sales commissions.

This use of Salesforce.com as a de facto on-demand ESB platform was noted in an August 2007 white paper entitled “Busting Myths of On-Demand Integration,” by Peter Coffee, Director of Platform Research.

“On-demand platforms exhibit the growing capability to provide a foundation for integration,” he said, citing a May 2007 announcement of the Salesforce.com SOA technology that enables the exposure and consumption of web services.

In the same paragraph he notes:

“This is not to say, however, that a move to a Web services protocol strategy (such as that of using a saas application such as Salesforce.com) is a prerequisite for on-demand integration…there are options available for use with the salesforce.com platform” such as custom coding or a third party integration platform.

In other words, on-demand applications, Salesforce.com being the most prominent, are quickly establishing themselves as integration hubs the way ESB providers such as Sonic Software, IBM’s Websphere, and BEA’s Weblogic were formulated to be.

These SOA solutions, however, are cost-prohibitive for smaller companies, divisions or departments, and are often managed by enterprise IT staffs who are unresponsive to the needs of the department. These smaller enterprises have to fend for themselves, and are adopting on-demand applications that require little to no IT involvement.

IT typically has to get involved when it comes to integration, according to Coffee. Such was the case with the educational products company. Their IT department provided the input that the newer division needed to give the technical “thumbs-up” to the integration solution. But due to human bandwidth issues they decided to go with a fully delivered integration solution as opposed to the traditional toolset that is typically sold to IT departments.

Tying together Salesforce.com, Oracle Financials and Xactly Corporation was done in the span of four months and cost less than $50,000. Why did it take that long? Because they had to take a breather between deciding on an integration vendor and a commission calculation vendor.

Compare that with enterprise application integration projects which typically take nine months or more and cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and you can see why Salesforce.com, together with fully configured integration solutions, are quickly becoming the “integration hubs” or systems of record for the smaller enterprise.