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Healthy Nonprofits Make Strong Vibrant Communities

first_img Tumblr Facebook Email E-Headlines Healthy Nonprofits Make Strong, Vibrant Communities on October 3, 2013 Share. In the October 2 issue of Cascade Business News you will find a comprehensive list of Central Oregon nonprofits. CBN has spotlighted several organizations that are critical to the wellbeing of our various communities. The nonprofit world can be challenging and composing as the goodwill they provide to local children and families does not come cheap. The volunteers and staff who direct these organizations must raise funds and coordinate volunteers to be able to provide the food, shelter, safety, healthcare and assistance needed to improve lives.As businesses we can take this suggestion from Abilitree that not many people think to look to a non-profit to increase their capacity or grow their team. And yet Abilitree does just that by working with people with disabilities to help them identify, secure and maintain meaningful employment. This nonprofit is just an example of the numerous services offered by our local organizations.This issue also offers assistance and suggestions to our local nonprofits on how they can be the best they can be. Chris Telfer CPA says even if you are the best, could you be better? What would it look like if you were better?  What do you need to do to be better? “To be a successful nonprofit means more than having the ability to raise money,” offers Telfer. “Successful also means having the ability to demonstrate effectiveness and improving upon it.”Telfer offers ways to measure the impact nonprofits are making on our community.The Nonprofit Association of Oregon (NAO) works across the state to strengthen and connect nonprofit leaders, organizations and the sector as a whole.  They, too, help nonprofits to be effective including robust online resources on starting a nonprofit, board governance, fundraising, and financial management. NAO offers to provide a strong collective voice for Oregon nonprofits to advance critical policy issues affecting the nonprofit sector in our state. Recent work included advocacy on the state and federal levels to protect the charitable giving tax incentive. The NAO assessment that “strong nonprofits make strong, vibrant communities” is a valuable message from this issue. The goal of CBN publishing the nonprofit information is to assist you in your volunteering and giving decisions. We hope you’ll take the time to review it carefully.center_img LinkedIn Google+ Pinterest By CBN 0 Twitterlast_img read more

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The Center Foundation in Bend Oregon Holding OnLine Fundraiser This Week Only

first_img $10 Buys Good Helmet for a Kid or a Concussion Baseline.The Center Foundation needs the community’s help with its first on-line fundraiser during the week of June 15-19 with the focus on brain and spinal cord injury prevention programs.Love Your Brain is a safety awareness and fundraising campaign designed to continue public awareness about the importance of helmets and identification of youth concussion and raise funds to sustain The Center Foundation helmet and concussion programs. The goal is to raise $10,000 in five days which will purchase several hundred helmets and dozens of concussion tests.Last year The Center Foundation distributed 800 no-cost bike helmets to local youngsters, conducted over 1,000 concussion baseline tests and assisted over 100 concussed youth. The cost of a traumatic brain injury can be in the millions and our goal is to help prevent those injuries.No amount is too small. To donate, please go to www.centerfoundation.org 0 The Center Foundation in Bend, Oregon Holding On-Line Fundraiser This Week Only LinkedIn E-Headlines on June 18, 2015 Google+ Twittercenter_img Tumblr Share. Facebook By CBN Pinterest Emaillast_img read more

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Full Circle Sewing Production Expanding in Bend Oregon

first_img (Owner Lynn Bancroft | photo courtesy of Full Circle Sewing & Production)Full Circle Sewing and Production completes move to larger space to accommodate growing business and greater diversity of projects. Owner Lynn Bancroft says, “The larger space allows us to accommodate multiple projects – large and small. Full Circle works with businesses to design, prototype and produce fabric based, soft-goods products.“For example, our largest to date is the design and production of a soft cover for a mobile hunting blind. We currently have a number of industrial sewing machines , two cutting tables and a variety of fabric, pack hardware and of course…the mobile blind.”Full Circle started in a smaller space to test the need for a custom design and sewing facility in Bend. The active entrepreneurs in Bend responded positively where it quickly became apparent that in order to support the breadth of projects, services and small to medium production runs, a larger space was a must.“We look forward to more innovative projects from our business community. We are encouraged hearing from the more established companies who see the value in bringing manufacturing back to the USA and here to Bend,” says Bancroft.Full Circle Sewing and Production, LLC offers custom design, sewing and manufacturing services. They help companies design and create their first prototype as well as small-medium sized production runs. The focus is non-apparel, durable goods including custom straps, covers, cushions, bags and packs.Lynn Bancroft541-460-SEWSlynn.bancroft@gmail.com61568 American Lane #900 www.sewfullcircle.com By CBN E-Headlines Share. Twitter Full Circle Sewing & Production Expanding in Bend, Oregon LinkedIn Facebookcenter_img Tumblr Google+ Pinterest on August 25, 2015 0 Emaillast_img read more

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Bend Chamber Announces 2016 SAGE Business Awards Nominees

first_imgBend Chamber Announces 2016 SAGE Business Awards Nominees Share. LinkedIn on August 18, 2016 Google+ Twitter Tumblr Facebookcenter_img Email E-Headlines 0 The Bend Chamber is rolling out the red carpet for its 27th annual Star Awards for Greatness & Excellence (SAGE), brought to you in partnership with U.S. Bank. On September 13, at the new Tetherow Event Pavilion, the Bend Chamber will celebrate the region’s finest citizens and businesses at this sold-out event.The Bend Chamber received more than 30 nominations. Nominations were open to Bend Chamber members. Citizen of the Year and Lifetime Achievement Award were open to both members and the community at large. All nominees, with the exception of the People’s Choice Award, will be judged by an independent panel of judges comprised of past winners, business owners and community dignitaries. Winners for the following categories, in addition to the winners of the Lifetime Achievement Award and Citizen of the Year, will be unveiled at the awards gala.2016 Bend Chamber SAGE Business Awards nominees –Small Business of the Year:ASI Wealth Management & Consulting ServicesATLAS Cider CoEarthCruiser USANiswonger Reynolds Funeral HomeTT MarketingLarge Business of the Year:Central Electric Cooperative IncHD CourierHumm Kombucha LLCNorthwest Navigator Luxury Coaches LLCSmolich MotorsUS BankNew & Emerging Business of the Year:1st Choice Assisted Care LLCEarthCruiser USANonprofit Organization of the Year:Boys & Girls Clubs of BendCentral Oregon Council on AgingChimps IncJ Bar J Youth ServicesMountainStar Family Relief NurseryRimrock Trails Adolescent Treatment ServicesSMART (Start Making A Reader Today)Healthy Workplace of the Year:G5R&H Construction CoEntrepreneur of the Year:ATLAS Cider CoCairnEcho Social PRHumm Kombucha LLCTT MarketingBend Chamber 777 NW Wall St Ste 200, Bend, OR 97703Phone: 541-382-3221 web: www.bendchamber.org By CBN Pinterestlast_img read more

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Mustangs to the Rescue Invites Community to Mustangs Matter A Family FunRaiser

first_img LinkedIn 0 Google+ on April 20, 2017 E-Headlines Pinterest Mustangs to the Rescue (MTTR) will be holding the Mustangs Matter – A Family Fun-Raiser event to celebrate their successful move to Bend. The event will be held on Sunday, April 23 from 11am to 4pm at the new facility at 21680 McGilvray Road, Bend.According to MTTR the organization is 100 percent dependent on community donations, sponsorships and our wonderful volunteers. With the recent move to Bend, they invite the community to come see the new location and learn more about what they do. With your help, MTTR can continue to serve the many needs of our local and extended equine community and provide a safe home for rescued horses.The event is open to the public and families are welcome. MTTR will be holding a Tack Sale, Silent Auction, Natural Horsemanship Demonstrations with MTTR horses, live music and food. All proceeds raised at the event will benefit MTTR.For additional information contact MTTR at 541-330-8943 or info@mustangstotherescue.org.The mission of Mustangs To The Rescue, an all-breed, all-volunteer, 501c3 non-profit equine rescue, is to positively impact the community we serve by supporting horses, their owners and potential owners, with assistance, resources and educational opportunities, thus improving the lives of horses and humans in our community. Mustangs to the Rescue Invites Community to Mustangs Matter: A Family Fun-Raiser at New Location in Bend, Oregon center_img Share. Facebook By CBN Tumblr Twitter Emaillast_img read more

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World of Mazes Experience a VR Episodic Adventure that will take you

first_img Share. LinkedIn Tumblr Facebook By CBN 0 Pinterest Twittercenter_img If you always wondered what is the potential of the current generation of VR devices, the World of Mazes is the new virtual reality game that will open your eyes to this fact. The new episodic adventure from the RiseAngle video game development studio is an incredible success that merges the traditional adventure genre with the stellar capability of virtual reality technology. There is no doubt that this title will provide a big splash in the VR gaming domain and most likely become one of the biggest hits – if not the essential game – in this year’s offer of virtual reality adventure games.World of Mazes, also known as Saving Princess Maya has been developed as a title that aims to innovate storytelling in this virtual reality environment. It is also noteworthy to mention that the game is based on an original intellectual property (IP) that has been developed inside of the RiseAngle company. This fact is very refreshing – modern gaming industry often completely leans on existing IPs and their reach when it comes to the audience. RiseAngle clearly decided to go against that principle and risk much with creating their own unique game and its distinctive setting. Now, once the finished product has been able to get its launch and great reviews, it is evident that the gamble paid off for the developers.Another thing that the developers decided was to avoid the rout of many modern adventure games, especially those in VR, which use very limited tales to enhance their releases. Instead, the World of Mazes makes use of its story as its central element and a pivot around it builds an incredible gaming experience and most definitely a hit VR game. The fantasy story of the game is that of the classic tales from this genre – one day, in a realm unknown, a princess gets taken by unknown foes and her world becomes endangered. In another world, her loyal servant is also imprisoned, but this time with the player – together, they join forces and not just escape, but set out to the rescue of the princess. The game’s story is engaging not just on paper, but also in the actual gameplay, where the players will get a chance to visit incredible worlds, explore the same realms and use their wits to find a way not just to save the princess but also find an ancient prophecy and how it all tied up in this otherworldly mystery.The World of Mazes comes with a strong set of well-crafted features. Firstly, the entire VR environment of the game and its excellent graphics all help with the players becoming totally immersed in this game. Its storytelling is not just a nice tale, but a fully integrated process that slowly unravels with each successfully completed levels. As these change one after another, so does the story unravel for the players. In the gameplay, the gaming mechanics feature intuitive challenges and a smooth first experience by new players. As the game begins in its full content, the players will meet and interact with many whimsical and fun NPCs across the worlds. At the same times, along with the imposing story, the game does not take itself too seriously. The game is full of great bits of humor and lightheartedness which work great along with the fantasy setting.Lastly, however, there is no need to underline that the World of Maze is still a challenging and complex puzzle game. It includes many puzzle challenges, which will demand the use of a range of items which need to be gatherers, combined and applied so that the puzzles can be solved. Now, as new episodes of the game get released, it is certain that more and more players will get to experience the pure joy of playing World of Mazes. Email World of Mazes: Experience a VR Episodic Adventure that will take you to a Mesmerizing Universe on February 5, 2019 E-Headlines Google+last_img read more

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Faceout Studio Principal Torrey Sharp Buys Out Partners Interest in Firm Charts

first_img LinkedIn Facebook After 12 years of successful partnership, Torrey Sharp has bought out partner Charles Brock’s interest in Faceout Studio. Torrey and Charles bought the studio from industry icon, David Uttley, in 2007 after David grew the business from its inception in 1996. “This transition is about acknowledging there are seasons for everything, embracing change and looking toward the future,” says Torrey. Faceout Studio stands behind its original vision of producing consistent, innovative book design for clients — a vision Torrey plans to advance in the coming years.“I’m grateful to have cultivated something special alongside Charles over a decade of working together. Charles has been a wonderful business partner, but more importantly, a good friend. The team at Faceout fully expects to keep our deep friendship with Charles, celebrating his next season as well. Growth often requires a willingness to embrace change and I’m very excited for the studio’s next chapter. We have a dynamic team and work with incredible clients. Tim Green will step into the role of creative director. Tim has been   a leader at Faceout for 15 years and is well prepared to lead this studio’s creative vision forward,” says Torrey.“I am deeply grateful to Charles, for his friendship and daily example of creative excellence. It has been a privilege to work alongside him these past 14 years (even though he is not a Giants fan). More than that, it has been a lot of fun, and that is a credit to Charles and the creative culture he helped foster. I set out to be a designer because I love it, and I’m still at it for the same reason. That’s the daily motivation of everyone at Faceout. Our best work flows from a sense of delight in the creative work we get to do every day. I’m very excited to step into the role of creative director with this amazing team,” says Tim.“I’m very proud of what Torrey and I have built over the past 12 years. We have had the privilege to produce some rewarding work for an amazing list of clients. I’m eager to see what the future brings for Faceout Studio. Tim Green is a great talent and a true friend. The studio and all the employees will benefit from his creative leadership. Personally, this is a new season for me as a designer and an artist. What I hope to do with Brock Book Design Co., is to focus my energies on growing as a creative. I’m excited that my best work is yet to come,” says Charles.Faceout Studio’s principal office will remain in Bend, Oregon. Torrey Sharp, along with the existing staff will continue operations from this West Coast location. All client communication and job related trafficking will continue to be serviced through this location.Faceout Studio is a market leading book design firm. The studio designs hundreds of books each year working with the world’s top media companies, mid-size publishers, university presses and individual authors. Over the years their work has been recognized by Communica- tion Arts, the AIGA, Print magazine, Eye magazine, Graphis, CMYK, Graphic Design: USA, ECPA, The Chicago Book Clinic, the New York Book Show, the AUP and the American Advertising Federation. Faceout’s work has also been published in various books, most recently from Rockport, Harper Collins, Springer and Barcelona-based Mao Mao publications. They have been invited to speak at various events hosted by the AIGA, AAUP, the Shanghai Press and Publications Bureau and the Taipei Book Fair Foundation.faceoutstudio.com • torrey@faceoutstudio.com on February 19, 2019 Faceout Studio Principal Torrey Sharp Buys Out Partner’s Interest in Firm, Charts Course for the Future Pinterest Tumblr Twittercenter_img E-Headlines Google+ 0 Share. By CBN Emaillast_img read more

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How Tech Giants are Helping Connect the Most Remote Parts of the

first_img on June 27, 2019 Pinterest By CBN 0 How Tech Giants are Helping Connect the Most Remote Parts of the World Over the last several years, tech giants have been deemed ‘too powerful’, in some cases even being likened to tyrants on a mission to take over the world. And, while – yes – companies like Amazon, Google, Apple, and Facebook have, in their dominance in the market, challenged current definitions of privacy, and collected mass amounts of users’ personal data, they’re doing a lot of good with their technology, too.This is especially the case in the most remote parts of the world.Internet Usage Around the World While it may seem the digital revolution has reached every corner of the globe, that simply isn’t the case. Countries in Asia, North America, and Europe tend to be the most connected, while countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Caribbean tend to be the least. That means that billions (yes, billions) of people in remote, isolated, and underdeveloped parts of the world are cut off from world news, are missing economic opportunities, and are limited in their educations. These consequences, then, create larger social inequalities and pull these nations even further behind.The problem, of course, is that they’re cut off and are falling behind precisely because they’re in the most remote areas.In the western world, connecting to the internet is generally seamless and people don’t consider the complex processes involved. But, in order to connect, you need – at the most basic level – a computer, a modem,a robust network of transmission cables, and software. This can be an incredible challenge when you live in a village far away from a power supply, without a telephone line, and out of reach of wireless signals.How Close are We to Internet Access For All?Fortunately, today, it’s no longer a question of if internet access for all is possible, but rather when it will happen, and which tech company will finish first. And, with the launch of Elon Musk’s Falcon 9 in 2018 and 60 more satellites having been   the race is well and truly on.There are several players in the global internet arena, all sharing the same goal: to connect the world – even rural areas in the developing world – at high speeds in order to increase communication between continents without the need for any expensive local infrastructure.As mentioned, Elon Musk is leading pack, having gotten permission from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to place 12,000 satellites at varying altitudes above earth’s surface as a part of a plan called Starlink.Google X’s Project Loon isn’t far behind, although their plan involves solar-powered balloons that would float around the stratosphere. The goal to connect the poorest parts of the world is explicitly a part of their mission which, for them, means tapping into a new market. Nonetheless, for the inhabitants of the area, it means cell phone service and internet access.Unsurprisingly, Facebook is gunning for first place, too. But, instead of satellites or balloons, they’re exploring the possibility of solar-powered, unmanned drones. These drones would beam Wifi down to specified areas and, with a goal that each drone will be capable of covering a 60-mile radius, the impact could be far-reaching.While it’s impossible to predict how exactly the world will become connected and there are a number of issues to solve regarding online boarders, the possibility of internet access suggests that global economic growth and prosperity could be on the horizon. Share. Google+center_img LinkedIn Twitter E-Headlines Facebook Email Tumblrlast_img read more

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These are the Tech IPOs from 2018 You Need to Know About

first_imgToday, we take a look at the major tech IPOs from 2018.  The IPOs were few and far between in the overall market.  We shine a spotlight on the eight tech companies that were able to debut their offerings on the Nasdaq and NYSE in 2018 as we anticipate some major IPOs for 2019 (Uber and Lyft).  For each company, we have included some additional information such as industry, valuation at time of IPO, change in valuation, select investors in the company, total external equity funding raised prior to IPO, and location to further the analysis.Interesting Facts:The average time to IPO for the 2018 Tech IPOs was 4690 days from day of founding or 12.85 years Tweet ThisThe average amount of external equity funding raised by the Tech companies that went public in 2018 is $624M Tweet ThisThe 2018 Tech IPOs are collectively down 1.12% in value from their time of IPO versus -6.2% for the S&P500. Tweet This77.78% of the major Tech IPOs in 2018 are for companies from the Bay Area  Tweet ThisCLICK HERE TO SEE THE MAJOR TECH IPOS OF 2018The TechWatch Media Group audience is driving progress and innovation at a global scale. With its regional media properties, TechWatch Media Group is the highway for technology and entrepreneurship. There are a number of options to reach this audience of the world’s most innovative organizations and startups at scale including sponsoring a piece like this, which will be read by the vast majority of key influencers in the entrepreneurial universe. Find out more here.PREVIOUS POST1 / 9NEXT PAGE These are the Tech IPOs from 2018 You Need to Know AboutJanuary 10, 2019 by Reza Chowdhury 380SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin Filed Under: Exits, Startups, Tech Tagged With: Bain Capital Ventures, Citigroup, Comcast Ventures, DocuSign, Dropbox, DST Global, e.ventures, EMC, EquityZen, Eventbrite, FirstMark, Ford Motor Company, Founders Fund, General Electric (GE), Global Founders Capital, Goldman Sachs, Greylock Partners, Index Ventures, KKR & Co. (Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.), Kleiner Perkins, Macquarie Group, Marc Benioff, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, New Enterprise Associates, Pivotal, Redpoint, Scale Venture Partners, Sequoia Capital, Sonos, Spotify, T. Rowe Price, Tencent Holdings, Tencent Music, Tiger Global Management, Uncork Capital, Upwork, VMware, Y Combinator, Zuoralast_img read more

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5 Signs That Your Business Is Ready for the Big Leagues

first_imgBusinessCollective, launched in partnership with Citi, is a virtual mentorship program powered by North America’s most ambitious young thought leaders, entrepreneurs, executives and small business owners.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POST 5 Signs That Your Business Is Ready for the Big LeaguesSeptember 14, 2017 by Dave Blakely 369SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin Filed Under: Strategiccenter_img Throughout the world and particularly in emerging market countries, the entrepreneurial landscape remains notoriously difficult to navigate, with an estimated 80 percent of small businesses failing to sustain themselves for a period of longer than five years.However, with an increasing percentage of jobs now being directly attributable to small business ventures, financial backers in both private and public sectors are slowly starting to acknowledge the substantial impact of entrepreneurial activity on a nation’s economy.Yet, despite the rising global trend toward VC backing of tech startups, there remain very few such initiatives present in emerging markets. Can this be accredited to unsustainable entrepreneurial ecosystems, or is success simply a mindset shift away?Conservative InvestorsA venture capital investor once told me that, out of ten investments, he expected seven to fail, two to return his investment and one to make a fortune. Those are fairly frightening odds for someone investing large amounts of capital, but even more terrifying for someone looking to leave the security of the job market to launch a startup business.What’s more, bankers and financiers are generally not intent on funding ideas that might be perceived as “pie in the sky,” particularly when it comes to the technical and creative industries. As a result, it’s no wonder that many startups end before they even crank up the proverbial engine, the main reason being they couldn’t raise the venture capital financing required to start or were simply too afraid to try.Reduce your risks. But there is hope for would-be entrepreneurs looking to make the leap into small business ownership. Many of those at the forefront of today’s tech landscape, including Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, got their starts moonlighting as network engineers or software salesmen, in order to build up a solid track record that financiers were able to trust. This approach to entrepreneurship can take time but reduces the risk for the more cautious, who are able to earn an income while at the same time working to get a business off the ground.Refine your business plan. Much of your ability to acquire financial backing and sustain your startup will come down to the effectiveness of your business plan. A practical, adaptable plan, which takes into account potential stumbling blocks and market shifts, will be your best guide to navigating the minefield facing new business owners. Factor in potential challenges, such as rising interest rates, non-payment by debtors, electricity cuts, theft of delivery vehicles, declining product demand, seasonal variations in supply and demand, and so on. Ultimately, financiers will be looking not only at your big idea but also at your ability to sustain and develop it.Do your homework. More often than not, real success comes from doing your homework. There’s no use in launching a revolutionary product if your market simply isn’t ready for it. So do your analysis, beta test your product, see who bites, and don’t ever be afraid to put out a free tester. Once the thumbs go up and the market says “yes, please,” then you can start selling and make a very strong case to potential financiers, who can help you take your business to the next level.Manage your cash flow. Potential venture capitalist partners are looking for a solid sales track record. This doesn’t just mean more money; it means giving your prospective venture capital investors something to measure ROI against. If you can manage a solid growing flow of sales, then your prospective VC partners are able to feel a lot more secure about your ability to manage and nurture their seed capital. Professional VC companies have a very strict litmus test on profitability. Most will not accept a loss-to-win ratio of less than 50 percent, so you really need to be able to show them that your idea has the capacity to go all the way and that you are the one to take it there.Change your mindset. In spite of increasing opportunities, going it alone continues to be a frightening prospect, particularly in developing economies. However, armed with the correct mindset and the right amount of hard work, research and planning, there’s nothing stopping you from turning your big idea into a big business success.last_img read more

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Apartment sustains damage after Wednesday afternoon fire

first_img(Photo Supplied/Fort Wayne Fire Dept)FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO) – The Fort Wayne Fire Department is investigating an apartment fire that occurred on Wednesday afternoon.It started around 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday when the Fort Wayne Fire Department responded to the 3400 block of Cheviot Drive in reports of a structure fire.Crews arrived on the scene within six minutes of the alarm.  Upon arrival, fire crews located a fire on the first floor of an apartment.  The fire was extinguished quickly after arrival.  The apartment sustained moderate smoke and water damage and minor fire damage.No injuries were sustained in the blaze.  The investigation is ongoing by the Fort Wayne Fire Department.last_img read more

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Planning Company Forums Basic Steps

first_imgFor the last month I have been preparing for this week’s Content Marketing Forum, which we host for the benefit of our expansion stage portfolio companies. There is a plethora of work that goes into planning these events and ensuring that they run smoothly from start to finish. What follows is a brief overview of the basic steps that go into planning these forums and, in general, these basic steps can be applied to most out of office meetings you coordinate.1. You need to have a general idea of the goal of each event. Are you focusing on content marketing, sales, business development services, venture capital financing, raising venture capital, etc.? Once your general idea is settled upon you can begin choosing your specific subtopics, finding specialists to be speakers, and building out the overall meeting agenda.2. Get a workable estimate to attendee size. Will you be hosting 20, 40, 60+ people? An estimated headcount is necessary for determining the type of space needed to accommodate them all. This information will also help determine the overall room set-up for the meeting (u-shape, classroom, rounds, crescents, etc.)3. Send out RFP’s (Request for Proposal) to local meeting locations. Hotels are an easy choice for one-stop shopping as they include overnight accommodations, meeting spaces, in-house catering, and in-house audio visual teams. Other locations, depending on the number of attendees, meeting needs, and overall budget, can include museums, convention centers, and your own companies offices (to name but a few).4. Send out your invitations for the meeting and track responses.5. Once the meeting space is set move on to the catering menu. Remember to include vegetarian options on your menu. Set the break and lunch times according to the overall meeting.6. Figure out what collateral information needs to get printed for the meeting and make sure you have enough supplies to support this amount of printing and binding. This is also a good time to ensure you have any additional non-tech supplies the meeting needs: easels, large pads of papers, markers, etc.7. As the meeting date nears do your final preparation and final check: Triple check that all individual speakers are attending your event and get a copy of their presentation(s); check that the meeting room is going to be arranged the way you need it to be; make sure the A/V needs are finalized and the A/V arrangement is settled; make sure the catering is finalized; lastly ensure that you have correct and accurate name tags for all attendees.This is only a small and basic portion of what goes on behind the scenes during the planning of a large meeting for OpenView Venture Partners. Subsequent blogs will highlight specific steps and offer a more detailed look into the planning of company forums. Today I am in the final countdown leading to tonight’s forum cocktail reception. My last minute tasks: ensuring power cords are under all meeting tables, getting an extra row of chairs placed in the back of the meeting room for late comers, checking the accuracy of my attendee count, finalizing name tags, etc. Today is all about ensuring that I have crossed all my t’s and dotted all my i’s.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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Defining Opportunity is a Key to Success

first_imgThis week’s learning from the November 4th salesforce.com visit is to have a very clear definition of a qualified opportunity.Have a very clear definition of a qualified opportunity. This becomes especially important when you separate the role of lead qualification and sales, which salesforce.com and several of our portfolio companies do. Having this definition agreed on by all stake holders – managers, lead qualifiers, and sales rep – will improve the quality of your pipeline, the accuracy of your forecast, and increase your sales reps productivity. This can also allow you to better quantify and track inbound marketing efforts and contribution to your pipeline.The definition of an opportunity will vary from company to company. Here are some good ideas for what to use as a good starting point:1. Time frame for decision is within XX days 2. Decision maker is identified 3. Prospect is comfortable with pricing 4. Prospect is interested in next step 5. Prospect has taken a free trial 6. Prospect has attended webinarThe right definition for your company is probably a combination of some of these.Another thing this allows the folks over at salesforce.com to do is add a quality control step in the qualification process that allows sales reps to send an opportunity back to the qualifiers when the criteria are not met. In addition to keeping the sales reps productive, this will keep the lead qualifiers honest to make sure they do not stray away from the agreed upon definition and clog the pipeline with premature opportunities.You can further implement and integrate this definition into your process by adding the criteria as fields in your CRM/SFA system, and creating a validation rule that will not let an opportunity be created without having those fields filled out.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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Why Startups Dont Have to Settle for Subpar 401k Plans

first_imgFor years, many startup and expansion stage founders or CFOs have been charged with setting up 401(k) plans for their employees that paled in comparison to the ones offered by their larger corporate competitors. As Allan S. Roth discusses in an excellent article for Inc.com, those small business 401(k) plans were wrought with fees that were so well disguised that most employees investing in them didn’t know how badly they were being gouged.As a result, Roth points out, that left startup founders to make one of two choices: either pay high costs out of their own pocket to save their employees from those fees, or opt for a 401(k) that cost the business almost nothing but fleeced its employees.Thankfully, Roth writes, they won’t have to choose the lesser of two evils anymore.With new 401(k) fee disclosure regulations going into effect next year, two of the financial industry’s best providers are entering the market for small business 401(k)s, meaning small business owners and their employees no longer need to settle.Roth discusses why fees and costs matter so much when choosing a plan, and breaks down the two new solutions coming on to the market – one by Employee Fiduciary Corp and one by Vanguard.To read the full article, click here.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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2 Steps for Better Social and Editorial Link Building

first_imgsocial linkingMost marketers are familiar with social media and influencer marketing. So, you’ve probably done your best to create great content that your customers and prospects will want to read and, just as important, share with their networks.One great way to empower that sharing, writes Jason Acidre on his blog KaiserTheSage, is to engage in “Linker Outreach.”Not only is it a fantastic way to prompt social and editorial link building – both of which help search engines identify high quality pages and indicate credible content – Acidre says it also gives you the opportunity to engage your most common “linkers,” who might also be your biggest advocates.So, what should you do to get started with linker outreach?Acidre suggests two specific steps:Find “linkers” in Delicious: By looking at which users bookmark and comment on your content the most, you can identify serial linkers. A little digging around should reveal their contact information.Craft your pitch: Let them know where you found them, keep messages short and clear, and provide some highly linkable content that they might be interested in.In his full post, Acidre provides examples of how he reached out to his most common linkers and what came of those interactions. To read it, click here.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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Thinking Outside Your Product Category Box

first_imgIn order to have an unyielding attention on your users’ behavior, you need to move beyond the product category walls that keep you contained.What does your product do? Don’t simply regurgitate your elevator pitch. That’s for investors who love industry jargon. When your product hits customer hands (or screens), what does it really do? How does it help them? Too often, we get stuck indentifying our businesses with pre-existing definitions. But if you set yourself free from the product category box, you can actually eliminate the competition, as you’ll see in this post at Signal vs. Noise. Granted, it’s not easy to shake loose from all those commonly used industry phrases. There’s a reason they exist and have become so widely used. The thing is they really do nothing but box you in and limit your imagination. Shedding that lexicon allows you to focus on new, helpful features that will truly improve the experience of your users. Photo by: Tim GreenAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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A Better Way for Startups to Prioritize Their Projects

first_imgStartups that find a way to focus on the few things that matter are typically the ones that succeed. Time is the most scarce and costly resource in a young cash-constrained business, and the largest drain on it is doing unnecessary work. This is compounded by the fact that work without meaning also leads to significant declines in employee motivation, self-worth, and enthusiasm, which results in work quality and employee retention problems. Why Prioritization is Difficult for StartupsFocus is a function of how well a company and its leadership is able to prioritize what they do, and more importantly what they will not do. But to have an effective prioritization process, companies need to have a clear understanding of what actions and results will have the biggest material impact on their business, customers, and vision.Prioritization is especially crucial for startups, where employees are often asked to do more with less and where a heavy emphasis is placed on operating efficiently under tight resource constraints. Unfortunately, the need for effective prioritization doesn’t make achieving it any easier.Most startups have an extremely hard time with prioritization. After all, they’re regularly presented with multiple priorities, and most of the time they lack the history and experience to know which initiatives will generate what results. To complicate things, since their agility is often their competitive advantage in the market, they typically face pressure to simply “move fast and break things,” making decisions with lots of uncertainty left unresolved.That’s one thing if you have access to unlimited time and resources, otherwise, you need an intelligent way of determining what to focus on.Given these dynamics, management teams need to think long and hard about what their vision, goals, and success means, and figure out what metric(s) they should use to gauge what should and should not be prioritized in their organizations.“One of the most useful tools a person has is the power to say “No” to things that are taking up time but are not adding much value.”— Robert Siegel, General Partner, XSeed CapitalHow Management Teams Should Think About Project PrioritizationA proven framework for thinking about the question of prioritization is in terms of marginal impact as it relates to achieving key goals and fulfilling a vision. These measurements provide a relative measurement of comparison to evaluate initiatives and opportunities.The most difficult part of this framework is identifying the key impact measurement(s) and what accuracy level is necessary to get confident about a decision.It’s important not to create a bottleneck in the decision-making process and slow the company down. Finding the right balance of turnaround time, resource commitment, and accuracy is key to developing a sustainable prioritization process.The last thing you want to do is go into analysis paralysis. Analysis should support decision-making not disable it!OpenView Labs as a Case Study: Using Impact to Evaluate ProjectsAt OpenView, one of our core objectives is to help our portfolio execs build great companies. We help realize this vision by maximizing the impact we have on the portfolio. Consequently, one of our goals is to make sure we are taking on high-impact projects and initiatives.Sometimes it is hard to decipher between projects and initiatives to determine which ones have the biggest potential of being high impact versus those that do not. This can be particularly difficult when evaluating bigger-picture research and strategy engagements where the goal is to help define long-term strategy or act on a longer term vision.What we have learned is that being able to define success in terms of an outcome metric is a great proxy for how well-aligned a project is with the company’s vision and corporate goals. In doing so, we also get a sense from the stakeholders what they see as the potential impact. That provides us with a good barometer to gauge one project versus another.The OpenView Research & Analytics Team has started to track the impact of each project we take on, so, moving forward, we have will benchmarks we can use for estimating potential impact of future projects.Having these types of conversations around what success really looks like will help you align your team around an end outcome. It’s also a necessary step to increase your ability to identify and prioritize high-impact projects vs. other work that could distract you.Segmentation Example Portfolio company X came to the Research & Analytics Team asking us to help them identify a target segment. The management team realized that their customers were not created equal and that the acquisition process and costs were very different. They knew taking advantage of their early mover advantage and picking up new logos as quickly as possible was key to their success.Consequently, the two most important measures of impact for them were change in sales length and win rate. The company’s previous experience selling into the target segment provided a good idea of what the relative benefit of the strategy could be.We defined the success metrics as follows:segmentation success metricsTo reach a prioritization score, we essentially take the potential impact of a project and divide it by the effort required to complete it. This provides a good sense of ROI that can be compared against other like projects.Buyer Insights ResearchPortfolio company Z came to the Research & Analytics Team asking us to research the needs of a senior IT buyer so that they could re-work their messaging.The key stakeholder let us know that their conversion rates had really suffered with this buyer, and they expected a more targeted message would result in a 15% boost in opportunity conversion rates. This would indicate the potential impact of optimizing messaging with another segment, as well.We defined the success metrics as follows:buyer insights success metricsWe can then calculate ROI and compare it against other projects in relative terms.TakeawayLeveraging an impact framework when prioritizing initiatives and projects will ensure you are being objective in your decision. This is not to say that errors in priorities will not be made. That is far from the truth, but minimizing the biases present will lead to fewer prioritization mistakes.Next week, I will share a list of the different metrics we think about using when measuring impact for Research & Analytics projects here at OpenView, plus tips for helping you develop a similar measurement process for your own company.Photo by: Robert S. DonovanAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

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Feds Investigate Cyberattack on US Power Plants

first_imgCybersecurity Tom Brant News reporter 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Image credit: Shutterstock –shares Feds Investigate Cyberattack on U.S. Power Plants Next Article The malware appears to come from several phishing campaigns, according to the FBI and Department of Homeland Security.center_img Add to Queue July 10, 2017 This story originally appeared on PCMag 2 min read The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Malware that may have originated in Russia has been targeting the computer networks of nuclear power plants and other industrial sites in the U.S., according to federal officials.One of the targets is the Wolf Creek nuclear power plant near Burlington, Kan., according to a report from the Department of Homeland Security and FBI obtained by the New York Times. The malware appears to come from several phishing campaigns, according to the report. Hackers created fake resumes for engineering control jobs, laced them with malicious code, and sent them to engineers with access to the critical systems that control industrial infrastructure. They also compromised legitimate websites that engineers were likely to visit, according to the report.Some attempts also involved man-in-the-middle attacks, in which the hackers redirected the engineers’ internet traffic through their own servers, the report said. The attacks occurred in early May, just as President Donald Trump signed an executive order to strengthen the nation’s cybersecurity.The report carried an amber warning, the second highest threat sensitivity rating, according to the Times. But the FBI and DHS still downplayed the threat.”There is no indication of a threat to public safety, as any potential impact appears to be limited to administrative and business networks,” the agencies said in a joint statement to the Times.Russian hackers are the chief suspects in the attacks, Bloomberg reported, citing U.S. officials who are investigating vulnerabilities in the electrical grid. The attacks bear a resemblance to malware that triggered a power outage in Ukraine last year. Ukrainian officials accused Russia of orchestrating that attack, which Moscow denied.Russian officials also rejected the notion that the country was behind the recent U.S. attacks. “We don’t pay attention to such anonymous fakes,” a Kremlin spokesman told Bloomberg. Apply Now »last_img read more

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Budgeting for Information Security

first_img How much should you spend this year? –shares Q: I’ve heard all about virus protection, managed services, security audits and the like, but I’m not sure how to budget for information security in the new year. Can you help?A: While it is good that you are at least thinking about spending some money on information security, there is less of a canned response to this or a particular percentage of gross sales to spend here. For marketing, labor or cost of goods sold, there is usually a set recommended percentage of gross sales to spend or use as a budget. We haven’t progressed to that point for IT/information security yet–the key word here is yet.On the one hand, information security is like insurance. Many senior-level executives struggle with the fact that spending money in this area does not necessarily add direct value to a company’s product or service. Neither does spending it on property insurance. Whether a business spends a dollar or a million dollars on a particular insurance policy doesn’t matter to the consumer and the value he is looking for. True reliability of sourcing is guaranteed with insurance, but that is indirect value. The amount you should spend on an insurance policy depends on what you want to insure. If you are a small operation with few computers and limited usage of the Internet and e-mail, then your risk of loss is less, requiring less insurance. If your business is an e-business and you carry out transactions on the Internet supported by intensive e-mail communication, then insuring your information and making the networks secure are of paramount importance. Spending more on insurance makes sense in this higher-risk situation. As you can see, there is no set percentage in each of these cases, but there is a relative risk factor that can be evaluated to help guide what should be spent on information security.On the other hand, many companies, both large and small, put the information security budget in with the overall IT budget. Historically, budget managers will look at IT infrastructure costs first, hardware second, software third and then, if there is enough money left, information security. This is like adding on a room addition to a house and if there’s money left, insuring it against fire and damage. Without enough insurance, the risk of loss increases. Without enough information security, the risk of intrusions, viruses and security breeches goes way up. Therefore, evaluating an information security budget should be the first part evaluated if it is to be included in an overall IT budget.The other thing related here is the manpower required to run an IT department and implement the budget components. Companies will budget for the IT manager, the hardware manager, the software manager and the related programmers and specialists. Again, historically speaking, the budget for the information security manager or programmer comes last, if there’s money available. This is a common situation, which is why you see security for information systems outsourced to third parties. This outsourcing still has to be budgeted but is usually easier to budget for than a person or an increased headcount. Within this outsourcing budget can come money for an information security audit, a plan to make sure all systems remain secure and the ongoing monitoring to make sure that any new hackers, viruses or intruders are kept at bay. In the world of information security this is known as managed services. In the world of a company’s information network, outsourced security services eventually add reliability and peace of mind to a company. This can eventually also add some indirect value to a company’s products and services.Michael Bruck is the founding partner of BAI Security, an 8-year-old information security consulting firm. Bruck leads his security team with a successful 16-year background in IT management and senior engineering positions. He is also the developer and author of best practices that are becoming standards in the information security consulting business. He can be reached via www.baisecurity.net or by e-mail at mbruck@baisecurity.net .The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, not of Entrepreneur.com. All answers are intended to be general in nature, without regard to specific geographical areas or circumstances, and should only be relied upon after consulting an appropriate expert, such as an attorney or accountant. 4 min read Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Budgeting for Information Security January 20, 2003 Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Add to Queue Next Article Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Technology Register Now »last_img read more

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