How To Avoid Losing Your Business To the Pandemic
At times like these, I didn’t know whether to keep my head up and try to power through it as if everything would be fine, or lock myself in my home office and bang my head on the desk while, of course, letting out long sighs of stress and anxiety. I needed a way to calm down. Most of all, I needed a way to fix the mess that COVID put me in.
COVID has killed the revenue of a lot of businesses. Depending on what industry your business is in, you may have had to lay off employees, adjust to thousands of dollars in revenue loss, and possibly even adapt by having employees work from home.
If it’s the case that your business is taking a hit from COVID, this article is for you. Businesses fail for two reasons: they grow too fast or they grow too slow. The first thing we need to do to avoid losing your business to COVID is to make sure your business can continue growing so your revenue can cover your expenses.
To do that, analyze your business to find ways you can generate more revenue so your business can continue growing. There are only three ways to grow a business:
⦁ Get more customers/clients
⦁ Increase your average order value (AOV)
⦁ Increase your customers’ lifetime value (LTV)
The first, getting more customers, is pretty self-explanatory. However, it’s not the most efficient way of growing your business because most people focus so much on this that they miss out on the other opportunities the other two ways have to offer.
Increasing your AOV as a business simply means increasing your rates. Your business makes money based on its ability to provide value to the marketplace that solves a problem. When consumers see and want that value (for example, toilet paper has become a big form of value that people are buying these days), they exchange money for that value and your business grows. If your business is providing value that, due to the pandemic, people really want or need, you can justify raising your rates a bit if it will keep your business afloat.
Increasing your LTV is the process of increasing the average revenue that a customer will generate throughout their lifespan as a customer. As a business builder, you can do this by adding more products that your existing customers will want to buy. You can also do this by getting your existing customers to refer other people to your business.
Now, as you strategize and work toward figuring out ways to leverage these three ways to grow your business, you should also be analyzing your business for ways that you can adapt to how the world has changed. Are you beginning to follow the telecommuting trend where employees work from home? Does the type of business your run make it a good idea to look into COVID-19 liability protection? Start looking for ways to make your business run more smoothly in our new normal.
Last, you want to remember that when it comes to your business you’re only as strong as your team. Use your circle of influence to adapt and push forward. What is your circle of influence? It’s your Support, Peers, and Mentors.
Your Support is the people you hold day-to-day interactions with. Do these people leave you feeling like you can overcome the hiccups that your business is facing, or are they telling you to give up? The people you engage with every day, including friends and family, need to be people who believe that you will make it to the light at the end of the tunnel.
Your Peers are the people you work with. Are these people that you can brainstorm and exchange ideas with, or are these a bunch of “yes men” that wait for you to come up with a good idea and just say, “Yeah, let’s go with that.” You need Peers who help you strategize a way forward.
Your Mentors are people who can provide you with wisdom and guidance because you’re not going to have all of the answers all of the time. They may have creative, innovative ideas you hadn’t thought of on how to increase your LTV or get more customers. You need Mentors and they’re good for you as well as your business, especially in times like these.
Since you’re only as strong as your team, to get the most out of your team, you need to make sure you’re able to communicate and collaborate with them from a position of health and wellness, not a position of tiredness, stress, and anxiety. You should be monitoring your stress levels, exercising regularly to manage your stress (and boost immunity), and you should be leveraging technology to stay as healthy as possible. A good fitness tracking app can go a long way.
For the best results from your team, help them help you. Work to create a happy and productive work culture by being a mentor to others to help build their circle of influence. You can adopt wellness initiatives such as having a ten minute guided meditation session at the start of your hour-long meetings with them. You can find creative ways to reward your employees for doing good work and brainstorm ways to make them feel more included in the team as well as the goals of the business.
Most of all, you want to communicate with your employees. For example, some of your employees may be working from home with kids. If that’s the case, you can set up a call with them where you let them know that you’re supportive of them and understanding that because we’re all adjusting and adapting to this new normal, there will be times where their children may need them.
What I recommend is having a session where you help your team set a schedule for their family that they can stick to. Using the time-blocking system, you can have them block out sections of time throughout each day where they may need to make lunch for their kids, go run errands, or whatever other tasks they need to take care of. You can even have a free miscellaneous block of time that they can use in case something comes up. That way, they can be more productive and take control of their days instead of feeling like they’re being jerked around by pressing matters that seem to just “come up”. This stability in scheduling will help you, as a business owner, reduce the stress and duties of your employees since they’re likely to share that schedule with their significant other. That means a stronger team, better leadership, and a work culture that promotes healthy productivity.
Decide today that the only things standing between you and anything you want to accomplish are time and a skillset. Decide today that you’ll do whatever is necessary to develop the skill sets you need to keep your business alive until you reach the light at the end of this tunnel. Those skill sets may be communicating with your team or maybe developing a new pricing strategy. Whatever it is, decide that you’ll do whatever it takes.
I plan out my goals for my career and business each year. When the pandemic came this year, it wiped out all of my plans. By following this strategy of masterminding with others, getting my stress under control, and adapting to the new normal, I’ve been able to grow and create new, profitable opportunities in this pandemic while my competition continues to stress themselves out.
Be the leader. Be the driving force. Be the person that your employees and competition look at and say, “I don’t know how he does it.”
About the Author
Ali Scarlett is a certified networking expert and #1 nationally bestselling author of The Clever Connector. Sign up for his free relationship-building tips via his website, www.aliscarlett-author.com.
The Definitive Answer: How Many Steps in a Mile?
how many steps in a mile: When it comes to tracking our fitness goals or simply monitoring our daily activity, step count has become an essential metric. Walking or running has long been a popular exercise choice, and knowing the number of steps in a mile can provide valuable insights into our progress and overall health. In this article, we will explore the question that many fitness enthusiasts ask: “How many steps are there in a mile?” So, let’s lace up our shoes and dive into the answer!
Understanding Stride Length
how many steps in a mile: Before we delve into the specific number of steps in a mile, it’s crucial to understand the concept of stride length. Stride length refers to the distance covered by a single step. It varies from person to person and can be influenced by factors such as height, leg length, and walking or running technique.
Factors Affecting Stride Length
Height: Generally, taller individuals tend to have longer strides, covering more ground with each step.
Leg Length: Longer legs often lead to a longer stride length, as there is a greater distance between steps.
Pace: Walking at a leisurely pace typically involves shorter strides, while faster-paced walking or running results in long strides.
Calculating Steps in a Mile
The average stride length for adults is approximately 2.5 feet, but this can vary. To determine the number of steps in a mile, we need to consider the formula:
Steps per Mile = 5,280 feet (the number of feet in a mile) / Average Stride Length
Using the average stride length of 2.5 feet, we can calculate the number of steps as follows:
5,280 feet / 2.5 feet = 2,112 steps per mile
However, it is important to note that individual differences in stride length can lead to variations in the number of steps taken to cover a mile. For instance, someone with a shorter stride length may need to take more steps to complete a mile, while those with longer strides may require fewer steps.
Factors Influencing Step Count Accuracy
How many steps in a mile: While the above calculation provides a general estimate, it’s important to acknowledge that step count accuracy can vary due to several factors:
Inaccuracy of Fitness Trackers: Fitness trackers and pedometers may not always provide 100%, accurate step counts. They rely on sensors and algorithms to estimate step counts, which can result in occasional discrepancies.
Terrain and Conditions: Walking or running on uneven surfaces or uphill versus downhill can affect stride length and, consequently, the number of steps needed to cover a mile.
Personal Variations: As previously mentioned, individuals’ unique stride lengths and walking or running techniques can lead to deviations from the average step count.
how many steps in a mile: The number of steps in a mile is a popular query among fitness enthusiasts, but the answer isn’t set in stone. While the average estimate suggests around 2,112 steps in a mile, individual differences in stride length and other factors can affect the actual count. It is important to remember that step count serves as a useful tool for tracking progress and encouraging an active lifestyle, but it should be considered alongside other indicators of health and fitness.
Whether you’re aiming for a certain step count or simply trying to incorporate more physical activity into your daily routine, understanding the relationship between steps and distance can help you set realistic goals and monitor your achievements. So, put one foot in front of the other, embrace the journey, and enjoy the benefits of walking or running toward a healthier lifestyle!
Smart Unified Building Systems
Since their introduction in the early 2000s, smart commercial tech has continually evolved and improved to provide today’s unified buildings (sometimes called smart buildings). However, designing a system that can automatically adapt to changing occupant loads, foot traffic, and climate controls has proven difficult but possible. The biggest challenges involve connecting multiple systems into a singular monitoring platform and the limited functionality of smart technology applications available on the property.
But, with the constant improvement in building automation systems (BAS), combined with emerging features such as the Building Internet of Things (BIoT), the vision of a unified building is much closer than you realize. Today it’s possible to connect and integrate all your devices, components, and systems to a singular platform for real-time monitoring and adjustments based on changing occupant needs.
Creating a Unified Building System
Depending on your business or industry, your commercial space can utilize more than two dozen different systems, potentially created by up to two dozen other manufacturers. As a result, system integrators and facilities managers using a single platform often need help to incorporate different systems together.
- Public Safety
- Mechanized systems
Further complicating the process are millions of existing buildings with outdated legacy systems or incompatible systems. With today’s improved sensor technology and a network of embedded sensors (installed during renovation or maintenance work), many older properties can begin to share the benefits of a unified building system. Architects, designers, and contractors should consider technology and products such as:
- Smart power optimization and regulation
- Predictive building maintenance
- Mobile, touchless, and facial recognition systems
- Occupancy sensors
- Visitor navigation and wayfinding
- Smart ventilation and lighting systems
And while full integration won’t happen for some time, those commercial properties that have integrated unified building systems report saving time and money while providing a better experience for tenants and visitors, such as:
- Stronger security
- Reduced energy usage
- Fewer maintenance chores
- Improved space utilization
Unified Buildings Offer Stronger Security
Facilities managers can incorporate smart technologies to reduce the need for, and the risk to, human security guards while providing a safe and secure environment for tenants or occupants.
BIoT will improve and streamline access control options by leveraging facial recognition systems. As a result, intrusions, attacks, or emergencies can be dealt with quickly and effectively. Additionally, these technologies can distinguish artificial from natural threats, start the evacuation process, and notify the first responders while protecting and monitoring the building’s infrastructure.
Unified Controls Reduce Energy Usage
Occupancy sensors can turn off lights and adjust thermostats when a room or building area is unoccupied. But why stop there?
When integrated with BIoT and AI, a facility manager can identify the peak and off-peak energy costs and adjust additional options, such as shades or screens, to further control lighting and ventilation systems.
Scheduled Maintenance Results in Fewer Chores
Smart buildings can sort and organize real-time data using AI and BIoT to quickly recognize potential issues within infrastructure elements, including public safety, plumbing, and power systems.
Other systems allow facility managers and techs to receive notices when a component requires maintenance, repairs, or replacement. Some programs utilize algorithms to predict servicing or repairs based on usage and performance trends. In comparison, others can automatically order the parts or schedule the repairs from a predetermined vendor list. As a result, a unified building typically avoids the usual breakdowns, downtime, and emergency repair costs compared to buildings with legacy systems in place.
Improved Space Utilization
Thanks to sensor technology, a manager can easily track the actual number of people utilizing a space over an extended time frame or a singular event.
Or by examining foot traffic data, a retail location can make truly informed decisions regarding fixture placement and merchandising options.
Virtually any commercial business or service provider can use this technology to provide a better customer experience, including:
- Medical services
- Shopping centers
- Public buildings
The technology is easily scalable, meaning the systems utilized in a small retail location can also serve a high-rise office building.
The Future of Unified Buildings
As facility managers continue to address new challenges from environmental initiatives, new legislation, and ever-changing consumer demand, those integrating BAS, AI, and the BIoT will be able to achieve the goals of reduced energy consumption and lower operating costs.
And while some compatibility concerns do remain, consumer demand for unified buildings that are safer, more comfortable, and less expensive to operate continues to grow by leaps and bounds.
Learn more about the revolutions Gridd® Adaptive Cabling Distribution® System from FreeAxez.
7 Basic Functions of Text Analytics & Text Mining
Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Text Analytics are branches of artificial intelligence (AI) that help derive insights from text-based data.
It helps explore how each of them will help know the features of natural language processing. Also referred to as text mining, text analytics contributes to the computer science discipline, which is the combination of natural language processing and machine learning. It helps in drawing the meaning from different unstructured text documents. In this article, you will find information about the seven basic functions of text mining and text analytics. This article will help you to get a clear overview of text analytics services and text mining services before you opt for them.
Text analytics engine is known to break down different phrases and sentences before it analyzes anything. Breaking down unstructured text documents into specific components contributes to being an initial step in each NLP feature, including theme extraction, entity recognition, and sentiment analysis.
You should remember that there are seven basic steps involved in the preparation of the unstructured text document to ensure in-depth analysis, which are inclusive of syntax parsing, chunking, parts of the speech tagging, sentence breaking, tokenization, language identification, sentence chaining, to name a few. You should understand that every step is procured between pure software rules and pure machine learning on a wider spectrum.
- Language identification
The NLP feature stack and text analytics technology of Lexalytics reveal the processing layers. So, every document undergoes transformation to be changed into structured data. The initial step in text analytics is the recognition of the language in which the text is written. Every language comes with its own set of idiosyncrasies.
You should remember that language identification helps in determining the different processes for each text analytics function. Hence, it is crucial to ensure that this sub-function is proper. Lexalytics provides support to 25 different languages, spanning the plethora of alphabets.
The majority of text analytics systems depend on different rules-based algorithms, which are useful in tokening different alphabetic languages. But, logographic languages need the use of complicated machine-learning algorithms. Once you are aware of the language in which the text is present, you will be capable of breaking it into different pieces.
You should remember that tokens are recognized as the individual units you are trying to operate. They are known to be phonemes, words, and full sentences. Tokenization contributes to the process to break the text document. Tokens are known to be the only words in text analytics.
The sentence of every ten words comprises ten tokens. Speaking of deeper analytics, it is beneficial in expanding the definition of the token. Such tokens are inclusive of hyperlinks, punctuation, words, and possessive marketers. Tokenization is known to be language-specific. Every language comes with its own set of tokenization needs. The majority of alphabetic languages adopt straightforward conventions, which help in breaking sentences, phrases, and words.
- Sentence breaking
With the identification of the tokens, you will be capable of telling where the sentences are ending. You should check whether the punctuation is ending in the last sentence. Before you execute the in-depth text analytics functions, you will be capable of telling where the boundaries are present in the sentence. At times, it is a simpler process. There are a plethora of communication channels that are challenging to break down.
- Parts of the speech tagging
After recognizing and tokenizing the text document language, it is essential to break down different sentences. After this, it is necessary to tag it. Parts of speech tagging contribute to the process to determine different parts of the speech present in the document’s token and tagging it.
Text Analysts make use of PoS tagging, which helps in figuring out if the specific token is the representation of the common noun and the proper noun. Besides this, you need to find if the specific token is the representation of the adjective or verb.
It is essential to move out to the text analytics function, which is referred to as Chunking. Chunking contributes to the range of different sentence-breaking systems, which are known to splinter the sentence into different component phrases.
- Syntax parsing
The sub-function syntax parsing contributes to being the option, which helps in determining the sentence structure. Syntax parsing is all about the fancy talk for sentence diagramming. However, it is considered a vital preparatory step to perform sentiment analysis and different natural language processing features.
There are different business enterprises that make use of unsupervised machine learning models, depending on complicated matrix factorization and input words. It helps in understanding the syntax.
- Sentence chaining
Sentence chaining happens to be the last step that helps prepare the unstructured text to ensure in-depth analysis. There is a wide assortment of business organizations, which use the technique referred to as lexical chaining. It helps in connecting different sentences.
The companies are known to chain the individual links sentences by the association strength of every strength to the whole topic. As the sentences appear in different paragraphs along with the document, you should remember that the lexical chain flows through the document. It is useful to the machine in detecting and diagnosing the overarching topics, thereby quantifying the complete feel.
With the withdrawal of the associations between different sentences, you should perform complicated analyses, such as contrasting and comparing the sentiment scores. It helps in generating long document summaries accurately.
Natural language processing and text analytics are regarded as ultra-complicated computer science functions, which well-trained data analysts understand. Text analytics contribute to the discipline of computer science, which combines natural language processing and machine learning, which helps in seeking the prerequisite meaning from different unstructured text documents. By utilizing data analytics services, which include all data-related solutions like text analytics and text mining, businesses can acquire insightful information about consumer feedback, market trends, and other crucial information to make data-driven decisions.
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