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How to Plant Ideas in Someone’s Mind – Adam Dachis

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Getting someone to want to do something can be tough if you know they’re not going to want to do it, so you need to make them believe it was their idea. This is a common instruction, especially for salespeople, but it’s much easier said than done. You have to look at planting ideas in the same way you’d look at solving a mystery. Slowly but surely you offer the target a series of clues until the obvious conclusion is the one you want. The key is to be patient, because if you rush through your “clues” it will be obvious. If you take it slow, the idea will form naturally in their mind all by itself…..

Read more: https://lifehacker.com/5715912/how-to-plant-ideas-in-someones-mind?tag=manipulation

 

 

 

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7 years Cancer Free – Prevention and Aftercare Audio Book MP3 + PDF

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This audio book and the e-book will help you to put your plans into practice step by step! The nutrition guide by Austrian bestselling author Claudia Priewasser recommended by top European medical centers – now also available as an audio book bundle and as a helpful e-book at a special price – with many recipes and healthy smoothies!

7 years Cancer Free contains everything you could want to know about cancer-inhibiting foods.

EFFECTIV

Healthy nutrition is enormously important! Learn what the difference is between a “generally healthy” diet and a cancer-inhibiting diet.

AVOID RISKS

Deciding on the right lifestyle and avoiding risk factors have a significant influence on your future health.

EFFICIENT

Combinations make the difference! Include foods in your diet that reinforces each other in their effect.

PSYCHOLOGY

The audio book in particular helps you in difficult situations. Change your attitude and decide this very moment to do something for yourself and your health every day. Claudia Priewasser shows you how to eliminate doubts.

STEP BY STEP

Nothing happens overnight. The author shows you how she has managed to change her eating and living habits step by step. You can do it!

EXERCISE

Reduce your cancer risk by 20 to 30% and learn the important impact of exercise on your health.

 

When you have cancer, you and your loved ones face many unknowns. Understanding your cancer and knowing what to expect can help you and your loved ones make decisions. Some of the decisions you may face include:

  • Which treatment is best for you
  • If you want treatment
  • How to best take care of yourself and manage treatment side effects
  • How to deal with financial and legal matters

Many people want to know their prognosis. They find it easier to cope when they know more about their cancer. You may ask your doctor about survival statistics or search for this information on your own. Or, you may find statistics confusing and frightening, and think they are too impersonal to be of value to you. It is up to you to decide how much information you want.

If you do decide you want to know more, the doctor who knows the most about your situation is in the best position to discuss your prognosis and explain what the statistics may mean.

INSTANT-ACCESS

The 12 Hidden Crises Working Women Face And Where They Come From – Kathy Caprino

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I spent 18 years in corporate life that had some great high points, but also a number of very significant challenges that turned into full-blown crises. These serious crises included sexual harassment, gender discrimination, chronic illness, narcissistic bosses, financial hardship, toxic colleagues, unethical leadership and more.

When I look back now, I see that my entire corporate career was riddled with repeating challenges that were not, in fact, random. I didn’t understand why at the time, but the truth is that these crises seemed to follow me wherever I went, no matter the job. I’d ask myself, “How can this be happening again? Why do I continue to have terribly challenging leaders, bosses and work cultures?”

After a brutal layoff in the days following 9/11, I reinvented my career, and became a marriage and family therapist, and later, a women’s career and leadership coach and writer. I began to research extensively — both quantitatively and qualitatively — the full array of challenges I was seeing in front of me that were, in fact, serious professional crises that women face regularly. I felt compelled to understand more about why women are experiencing these crises so frequently, and how to bring new, effective solutions to the table.

In 2007, as I was doing research for my book Breakdown, Breakthrough, the findings indicated that 7 out of 10 women studied were experiencing at least one of the 12 hidden crises I’d identified , and on average, they were experiencing 3 at the same time. Eleven years later, in the work I do with women now, the surveys my clients have filled out reveal that needle on these crises has not yet moved.

In earning a master’s degree in therapy, my eyes were opened about what we’re really going through when we experience these chronic, repeated challenges. I learned how our personalities are formed in childhood, and the ways in which we learn to cope with stress and pain are often not healthy or productive. I learned too about how self-confidence and self-esteem and our ability to advocate for ourselves can be crushed by family and cultural programming, especially when parents and authority figures don’t understand how to raise and nurture children effectively so that they can live self-reliant, independent lives based on their own authentic values and ideas.

And I learned this: The chronic challenges we face as professionals are most often not random, and not about our “careers.”

If your serious challenges (or more aptly put, “crises”) repeat over and over again, no matter what job, career or relationship you pursue, or what employer you sign on with, then the problem is most likely not the situation itself but how you are seeing yourself and operating in the world, and what you expect for your life and believe you deserve. And it’s your boundaries as well, and what you find acceptable and tolerable.

The reality is that you are, unconsciously, co-creating and contributing to the perpetuation of these problems in your life.

How do we address these challenges so they never repeat again?

It’s a journey that takes time and effort, not a quick-fix, but there are key steps you can take today to stop in your tracks, understand what’s happening for what it really is, and take empowered action to change it

The first essential step is to assess if what you’re experiencing is a chronic crisis or just a rough patch. In other words, is it an incident or an issue?

People will tolerate the intolerable for far too long in their lives, often because they can’t discern if what they’re facing is just a hard time or a true crisis.

Below are the 12 most common crises thousands of working women (and many men) face today that are often misunderstood as just temporary situations when they’re not, along with what you need to look more closely at to begin to resolve this challenge. These crises fall under four key categories: empowerment with self, others, the world and what I call your “higher” self.

The top 12 professional crises:

Empowerment with Self:

1. Suffering from chronic health problems that won’t abate: Failing health — a chronic illness or ailment — that won’t respond to treatment

Look closely at: What is your body saying that your lips cannot?

This may not seem like a “professional” crisis, but it is. For instance, I experienced four years of chronic, serious infections of my trachea which doctors simply couldn’t understand or help. But from the minute I was laid off from my toxic VP role after 9/11, the infections vanished. They simply disappeared. Why? Because I had spent years not speaking up for myself or saying what needed to be said, and was so exhausted and stressed every day that my body was trying to communicate what my lips couldn’t.

2. Experiencing a loss you can’t recover from: Losing a position, role, relationship, loved one or facing another loss or setback which you can’t overcome.

Look closely at: What parts of yourself or your life experience are you grieving the loss of?

When we lose something that fed our self-esteem, such as a job or a relationship, it often devastates us in a way that we don’t recover from. And that’s because we’ve overly-identified with that one thing that gave us self-esteem. In other words, we lost parts of ourselves that we now need to regain.

3. Failing yourself, and losing your own self-respect and self-acceptance: Chronically behaving in ways that make you feel ashamed of or let down by yourself

Look closely at: Where exactly have you given up your power in life, work and relationships, and how are you behaving that is beneath you, and hurting yourself and others?

If you look at how you’re behaving both personally and professionally, and don’t like or respect who you are any longer, it’s not about your job or career. It’s about how you’re operating in the world.

Empowerment with Others:

4. Failing to speak up and stand up powerfully for yourself: Contending with a crippling inability to speak up — unable to be an advocate for yourself or others, for fear of criticism, rejection, or punishment

Look closely at: Where you learned (most likely in childhood) that it wasn’t safe to speak up for yourself, and defend what you need, want and believe.

An inability to speak bravely for what you need and want is a problem I work with clients on literally every single day of the week. If we can’t communicate what we need in a powerful way, we’ll lose more than just opportunities. We’ll lose everything that makes us who we are. 

5. Facing repeated abuse or mistreatment: Being treated badly, even intolerably, at work — and choosing to stay

Look closely at: How old is this issue of being manipulated or mistreated, and what are you afraid of losing if you leave?

If you were manipulated in childhood by parents who gave you only conditional love and demanded that you be a certain type of person to be loved (especially if you had narcissistic or emotionally manipulative parents, teachers and authority figures), you need outside therapeutic help to support you to heal and thrive beyond those crushing lessons that this manipulation taught you.

6. Getting crushed by unrelenting competition: Feeling like no matter what you do it isn’t enough, and you’re sick to death of trying to prove your worth

Look closely at: Why “winning at all costs” has become a regular part of how you’re living and working, and what the true costs of that approach have been in your life.

If you can’t feel any level of comfort or joy at being collaborative, inclusive, or accepting – and feel you always have to be “on top” — it’s time to explore if at the root, you simply don’t feel good enough and where that came from.

Empowerment with the World:

7. Feeling trapped by financial fears: Remaining in a negative situation solely because of fear of money

Look closely at: How you’re relating to money, and what your money story is and has been.

It’s astounding how many people will stay in demoralizing and unsatisfactory conditions simply because they’re too afraid to take even one small step to explore improving their situation, because of their intractable money fears.

8. Wasting your real talents: Realizing your work no longer fits and desperately wanting to use your natural talents and abilities differently

Look closely at: Why you believe that you’ll go broke or destroy your life if you pursue a new direction where you can leverage your real talents.

I’d be very wealthy if I had a dollar for every time I’ve seen, read or heard people saying that to pursue a new, more fulfilling direction will make them go broke and lose everything. It’s simply not true, if you pursue career change in the smartest, more effective way possible.

9. Longing to be of help in the world, but feeling your job won’t allow it: Knowing in your heart that you’re meant to do something meaningful and purposeful that helps others, but not seeing any way to make that happen

Look closely at: What do you think it takes to impact the world? Do you assume it has to require tremendous ability, money, or time? Can you reframe that (as so many others have) that you can start making a small impact in the world with tiny, powerful actions that are doable in your life, one step at a time?

We can make a difference in the world in many ways, perhaps through our work, but also through our volunteering, hobbies, or contributing our time and effort to a cause that matters. Where can you be of use to the world today?

Empowerment with your higher self:

10. Everything is falling apart all at once: Experiencing pain, hardship and suffering in not just one domain of your life but in many, and it’s extremely hard to manage all the struggle in a functional way.

Look closely at: The degree to which you are and have always been connected to struggle, and in some ways feel more “comfortable” in struggle than in ease, and where that connection came from.

I’ve worked with hundreds of professionals and leaders over the years who seem to be more “comfortable” when things are hard, painful and chaotic. When life eases up, they sabotage it because easy and joyful seem somehow “wrong.” Until you can get to the bottom of why struggle and pain feel better for you, and can let go of your need for it, struggle will be a regular part of your life experience.

11. Striving unsuccessfully to balance life and work: Trying — and failing — to balance it all, and feeling like you’re letting down everyone and everything that matters most

Look closely at: What are your top life priorities, and how comfortable are you to honor those fiercely and confidently, starting today?

I’m a mother with two grown children now, and I’ve lived what so many parents have experienced – the deep challenge of striving to be the parent or caregiver they dream to be, while simultaneously making a significant impact in their professional lives. I’ve found too in coaching women who need and want more balance and control, that it’s all about identifying with eyes wide open your highest priorities in life, then mustering the boundaries, bravery and determination to pursue those priorities without hesitation and regret.

12. Doing work you hate: Longing to reconnect with the “real you”—and do work you love

Look closely at: Why you believe there are no feasible ways to shift your professional life to a direction that will be more fulfilling and rewarding for you.

Your career is within your control, but so many people today have abdicated their own control and power, staying stuck for years or even a lifetime in work that demoralizes them.

If you’re facing any of these crises, have hope. Thousands of people have engaged in the internal and external work to shift out of these crises, and dramatically improved their lives and careers. There’s no reason why you can’t be one of them.

Your kindly Donations would be so effective in order to fulfill our future research and endeavors – Thank you

How to Refocus Your Strategy and Reenergize Your Team – Stanley Meytin

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A person’s passion is the sincerest definition of who they are. Passion can manifest itself in a hobby, an aspiration, or if you’re really lucky, a career. Take two people, Joe and Jane, as an example. Joe has a passion outside of his career. He devotes a lot of his free time to this passion and naturally speaks about it to his peers.

When his peers think of him they probably define him as “person passionate about X.” Now take Jane, one of the lucky few who has made a career out of her passion. She devotes twice the amount of time, twice the amount of energy and twice the amount of conversation to her passion. How do you think her peers define her?

If you’ve read Simon Sinek’s bestseller Start With Why, then Jane will remind you of Herb Kelleher, co-founder of Southwest Airlines, or Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple Inc. Joe will remind you of the Wright Brothers. Each of these individuals built empires by undyingly following their passion. Sure, you can claim that these individuals are used as examples because of winner’s bias. But they succeeded because not only were they extremely passionate. They succeeded because they were able to clearly communicate their visions.

I consider myself extremely lucky. Like Jane, I’ve built a career out of my passion. When I first launched my film production company, my team asked the same questions regarding our clients that our competition was asking:

  • What is this client doing that’s different?
  • What do they bring to the table?
  • What problems are they solving for their customers?

While these questions helped us understand our clients, we realized they weren’t getting to the core of what defined them. We were part of the same old convention of business. We were focusing on what our clients were doing and not why they were doing it in the first place. Once we realized this, we began asking ourselves different questions:

  • How can we harness the passion that defines the client’s company to create a story?
  • Are their employees inspired by that passion?
  • Does the story align with their core values?
  • How can we align the story with the company’s brand mission?
  • How is that story going to connect with their audience?
  • How are we going to make the story authentic and engaging?

The biggest takeaway, however, didn’t come in the form of one of our clients’ videos going viral. It came in-house. 2016 was the first year we set a quantitative benchmark for the number of videos we wanted to produce. Not only did we not hit the benchmark, but with all the energy we put into hitting a quota we lost focus on creating a better product. We produced more videos, but they were watered down compared to previous years. We lost our own purpose.

We got rid of all quantity benchmarks in 2017 and as a team, we held a meeting to refocus. In this meeting, we asked ourselves the same questions that we asked our clients. We ended the meeting with a mission to create a video channel to tell impactful and authentic stories that inspire others.

That channel has been a remarkably accurate reflection of the meeting where it was first conceptualized. We’re now using the same techniques that helped us define our purpose in our core business for our corporate clients. Not only has it righted our ship and produced success but it has also provided us with an entirely new set of questions to ask our clients:

  • Is their organization helping others?
  • Is their mission connecting with others?
  • Are their customers genuinely understanding their mission?
  • Are employees buying into their mission, do they believe their roles play an important part in promoting the mission?
  • Are they building a community?
  • Are they staying true to their core values and the values of their customers and employees?

The beauty of these questions is that you can propose them to your clients, to your employees and even to yourself. They’re not specific to video production or any industry for that matter. If you already have the answers, that’s incredible. If not, then use them to refocus your strategy or reenergize your team.

Just swap “their” and “they” for “your” and “you.” Connecting to people on a deeper level, nurturing a human connection, evoking emotion and inspiring are key ingredients to building loyalty and bringing the best out in people.

Note, however, that not all ingredients are created equal. Like apples grown on two separate farms, the ingredients that I listed — those that were seeded and cared for with passion — will always taste better.

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How the European Union’s GDPR Rules Impact Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning – Mike Kaput

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This Regulation lays down rules relating to the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and rules relating to the free movement of personal data.”

It’s no “We hold these truths to be self-evident…” but when the European Union (EU) drafted the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that goes into effect on May 25, 2018, they definitely had individual freedoms in mind.

In this case, it’s freedom of individuals to control their personal data.

The GDPR is a broad regulation that outlines how companies may legally collect and use individual personal data—and what rights EU citizens have concerning their data.

It’s a major regulation with major effects. Companies that collect data from EU citizens must follow a number of regulations around collecting that data in order to legally use it. They must also respond to citizen requests to alter that data in certain circumstances.

Notes Elizabeth Juran, a consultant at marketing agency PR 20/20 (which powers the Marketing AI Institute):

“The GDPR is a European privacy law that protects consumers from unfair, unclear and unethical uses of their data. You may have noticed updates in your automation software or data collection tools like the one below from Google Analytics:

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These aren’t your average skim-and-delete email notifications. The GDPR will change how we, as marketers, use data. Historically, companies haven’t been required to disclose information like the following:

  • What kinds of data they store about consumers.
  • What they’re using consumer data for.
  • Why they ask for (or require) the data they do.

Starting May 25, the rules about data will heavily favor the consumer. The law is specific to individuals who reside in the European Union (EU) and European Economic Community (EEC), but companies all over should be aware. If you have even one person on your contact list from the EU or EEC, your forms, privacy policy and email tactics will likely have to change to avoid breaking the rules for that contact.”

This is big for marketers of all stripes. But what effects might GDPR have on the use of artificial intelligence?

Turns out, a significant part of the regulation also deals with AI and algorithms. Like the rest of GDPR, the language may be construed broadly. No precedents have yet been set with the regulation. So a lot is up in the air as to what will actually be enforced and how it’ll be enforced.

GDPR and AI

According to the Brookings Institution, a US think tank:

The GDPR being implemented in Europe place severe restrictions on the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning. According to published guidelines, “Regulations prohibit any automated decision that ‘significantly affects’ EU citizens. This includes techniques that evaluates a person’s ‘performance at work, economic situation, health, personal preferences, interests, reliability, behavior, location, or movements.’” In addition, these new rules give citizens the right to review how digital services made specific algorithmic choices affecting people.

This statement alone creates substantial uncertainty if you know anything about artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Lots of AI systems run into the “black box” problem, in that they’re not very transparent about how their machine learning algorithms reach decisions. For consumers, this means you don’t necessarily know why AI may recommend what it recommends or take the actions it takes.

There’s no doubt the black box problem becomes troublesome the more AI is adopted in marketing and other industries. At some point, marketers will want some idea of how systems make decisions, especially as these systems recommend more sophisticated marketing actions.

For instance, if I have an AI system that prescribes how I should allocate my marketing budget, I’ll at least want some idea what inputs the system uses to make those decisions. (At least, I will if I need to explain any of this to my executive team or board.)

Does that mean you need to know exactly how the AI’s algorithms work? Probably not. But there’s a balance here that likely needs to be established.

Another problem, however, is that sometimes the creators of AI systems can’t always explain fully why AI makes its decisions. For sophisticated AI, like deep learning and neural networks, it is sometimes extremely difficult for the people who created these systems to pinpoint each and every step in the decision-making process.

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Says AI expert Pedro Domingos, author of The Master Algorithm:

“The best learning algorithms are these neural network-based ones inspired by what we find in humans and animals. These algorithms are very accurate as they can understand the world based on a lot of data at a much more complex level than we can. But they are completely opaque. Even we, the experts, don’t understand exactly how they work. We only know that they do. So, we should not allow only algorithms which are fully explainable. It is hard to capture the whole complexity of reality and keep things at the same time accurate and simple.”

Hard as it is to believe, he’s right. There may not be an easy way for an AI system’s creator to explain how the system works. In the meantime, regulations like GDPR that require such explanations may limit the amazing efficacy of these systems, Domingos points out:

“Let’s take the example of cancer research, where machine learning already plays an important role. Would I rather be diagnosed by a system that is 90 percent accurate but doesn’t explain anything, or a system that is 80 percent accurate and explains things? I’d rather go for the 90 percent accurate system.”

GDPR presents some interesting conflicts and considerations for the companies that build AI. Brookings notes that it could hold back AI development in the EU:

“If interpreted stringently, these rules will make it difficult for European software designers (and American designers who work with European counterparts) to incorporate artificial intelligence and high-definition mapping in autonomous vehicles. Central to navigation in these cars and trucks is tracking location and movements. Without high-definition maps containing geo-coded data and the deep learning that makes use of this information, fully autonomous driving will stagnate in Europe. Through this and other data protection actions, the European Union is putting its manufacturers and software designers at a significant disadvantage to the rest of the world.”

Now, a lot of the effects will utterly depend on how lawmakers within the EU interpret GDPR.

Somewhat ironically, it’s not at all clear how they’ll come to their decisions, as they operate in a bit of a black box of their own.

Disclaimer: We love talking about everything related to AI—even legal regulations—but we’re not lawyers, nor should this content be construed in any way as legal advice. We recommend all companies consult with legal counsel about GDPR-related questions and actions.

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How Blockchain Technology Is Helping Remodel the Private Equity Industry – Peter Daisyme

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Private equity investment funds have made many people and institutional investors billions. However, structural issues prevent all parties from experiencing the full benefits of this powerful investment vehicle.

Real estate investment has proven inaccessible to many investors across the marketplace. It has required massive initial buy-ins and/or intimate market knowledge for profitable participation.

Private equity today

Historically, private equity funds have been a reliable and steady source of income for investors and fund managers. Unlike public companies, a limited number of in-the-know partners hold private equity. Shares can’t be bought and sold on the stock market. Now, this is where shareholder governance and reporting are significantly easier. Unlike venture capital, private equity is traditionally used to invest in established businesses seeking to expand or restructure.

Therefore, a growth-oriented private equity fund invests the capital it raises in companies seeking growth capital to facilitate expansion, an acquisition strategy, and/or restructuring.  In addition to providing capital, the fund’s investment team will use its expertise to assist a portfolio company in achieving its growth goal.

After a prescribed amount of time, the fund divests its interests in the portfolio companies. Hence, this provides a return to the fund’s investors.  After divesting its holdings, the fund will be wound down. Then, the private equity firm will start a follow-on fund and repeat the cycle.

Stiff structure

In the past, this investment model has been successful. However, it also has struggled with several inefficiencies.

Private equity fund managers have sought to work with a relatively limited number of investors to minimize shareholder reporting needs. Hence, the amount of cash typically required for participation means only large institutional investors like pensions or wealthy individual investors can buy in. A huge portion of the investing world simply isn’t able to participate in this profitable investment structure.

Furthermore, private equity fund structures have defined liquidation deadlines. These deadlines drive certain behavior that isn’t always in the best interest of maximizing underlying asset value.  After the downturn, many funds liquidated their holdings. And, as a result, suffered tremendous losses. These structural deadline elements oftentimes constrain the investment manager from generating the best returns for their investors.

Blockchain token solutions

Blockchain’s immutable ledger can be used to tie real-world assets to tokens. This strategy combines the benefits of blockchain — its transparency, accessibility and security — with the reliability of real-world investments. Smart contracts and an immutable ledger means ownership of those real investments can be secured within the blockchain itself.

Cryptocurrency has made a few people very rich over the past six months. Yet, many tokens have experienced price drops almost as dramatic as their price increases.

People who need lower-risk investment opportunities have been shut out of the cryptocurrency boom. No one wants to sink a large portion of their kids’ college fund into a cryptocurrency that might be worthless tomorrow. This is where asset-backed blockchain tokens come into the picture.

A secure option for investment: Asset-backed tokens

Founded in 2012, Muirfield Investment Partners is a private equity firm. It will launch a TAO for a new generation of private equity investment. Murfield built MIF, a security asset token. And, a private equity real estate investment portfolio managed by the private equity real estate firm will back the token.

Initially, a limited number of U.S. accredited investors and non-U.S. approved parties will receive tokens. Then, public exchanges buy and sell MIF tokens. This can happen after a lock-out period of 90 days to a year. This groundbreaking model presents several opportunities.

Breaking the rigid structure of private equity investment

Tokenization allows a lower barrier of entry to participation. Anyone who owns just one token is participating in the fund.

Furthermore, tokenization allows liquidity that was previously impossible in private equity fund structuring. As a result, this helps optimize the private equity fund structure. Investors in need of redemptions can sell their tokens in exchanges. Someone else acquires the token.

Fund managers face far lighter redemption burdens under the tokenization model. Plus, the fund doesn’t have a liquidation deadline. Therefore, they can manage the fund far more efficiently and drive greater economic returns for their investors.

In fact, tokenization means no fund liquidation. Instead, managers can focus on maximizing the fund’s long-term net asset value rather than reaching a target exit date.

Now, Muirfield wants to improve the traditional private equity fund world. Tokenization opens this world up to a larger participant pool. As Thomas Zaccagnino, Founder of Muirfield Investment Partners, explained, “We are very excited to bring a new and much improved private equity investment structure to the market.

A structure offering better alignment between the investors and investment manager, improved ability to maximize assets values, and enhanced liquidity allowing investors the ability to control how long they participate in the growth of the underlying real estate portfolio.”

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as $5, you can donate us – Thank you.

New Technologies Allow You to Do Business (and Compete) From Anywhere – Amarillo

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Everyone knows just how much of an impact technology has had on global business, but if there’s one segment that has benefited the most from technological innovation it’s entrepreneurs. With mobile phones, cloud computing, do-it-yourself accounting software and ubiquitous connectivity, business owners can now create successful companies quickly and from anywhere.

However, with so much technology out there, it can be hard to know what programs and tools are essential for getting a company off the ground and growing. There are some must-haves, though, including these five types of tech.

Super-Size Your Storage

In today’s world, most budding businesses need far more storage than their computers can provide. Things like high-resolutions photos, data-heavy PowerPoints and an endless stream of documents will max out CPU storage in no time. Fortunately, cloud-based companies like Dropbox, Box, Apple and Google offer several terabytes of data for a reasonable monthly cost.

These programs also make collaboration easier as you can quickly share files and folders with contractors and employees. Thanks to these storage sites that many small companies can create a global workforce from the start.

Keep Up With Collaboration

Whether you’re in an office or have a remote workforce located in different cities, being able to collaborate and connect with staffers quickly is a must. Over the last few years, sites like Slack, Basecamp, Trello and others have revolutionized the way small business employees interact with one another.

Forget e-mail–you can now send messages to individuals or teams in an instant, you can work together, in real-time, on complex projects, and you can even build camaraderie by creating “channels” dedicated to more social communication. Messages and files are also easily searchable, making it difficult to lose something important.

Crunch The Numbers

As excited you may be about your brilliant idea, you still need to run a business. That means keeping receipts, adding up bills, doing taxes and other more mundane work. While it may still be a good idea to have an accountant nearby, technology can, and should, take care of most of this work.

Quicken, the classic accounting software, is still popular for tax work, but other programs like Wave Accounting, Xero and Zoho Books come with a variety of features like invoicing, payroll, bill payments and other mission critical applications and fall well within the budgets of most small businesses.

Show Your Face

Instant messaging and email only goes so far. In many cases, you still want to see clients or employees face-to-face–maybe you have to walk them through a presentation or just want to catch up. That’s why having a good video program is critical for small businesses today.

You’ll want to find software that allows you hold meetings with multiple participants, share files with people on a call and you may want to be able to record conferences for future viewing. Google Hangouts, Skype for Business, Zoom.us and GoToMeeting are just some of the popular video conferencing sites to choose from. While it may not be quite as good as a face-to-face meeting, it saves a fortune in travel costs and wear and tear.

Set Up A Store

There was once a time when creating a consumer-focused e-commerce website was a painstaking process. Now, though, sites like Shopify and Tictail let even the smallest companies create sleek websites with all the e-commerce fixings. Companies like these have been a boon to entrepreneurs-

They let users create online shops in snap and take a variety of payment options, such as credit card and PayPal, so that every potential customer can buy what you’re selling. It only takes a few hours to get a store up and running and turn your company into a potentially global business.

While there are plenty of other useful technologies out there–security software, customer relationship management programs and so on–incorporate these five tools into your budding business and you could find yourself ahead of the competition in no time.

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How to Lower Business Costs Using VOIP Technology

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If you are looking for a way to lower your business costs it may be worthwhile to consider how much you may be able to save if you make the switch from standard telephone systems to VOIP service.

For many people they may have heard the term VOIP but may be unaware of what it means and how it can benefit them. Here is what you, and they, need to know

What is VOIP?

VOIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. It sends the packets of digital information that make up what you are saying in your call through the Internet instead of through traditional phone lines.

Not only does it make it possible for a company to lower your rates there are many different additional functions that can be possible using VOIP technology. A VOIP setup may allow you to send and receive messages that would otherwise not be possible under a standard telephone set up.

How can VOIP save your business Money?

Employing Voip can save you money in a number of Ways:

  • Saving on Line Fees

There are several different ways that using a VOIP system can save you money. The first is that they can often allow users to get rid of using a cellular phone and a desk phone. Because calls can be sent to a cell phone quite easily with VOIP there may not be the need to use both of these communications devices. Because you are not paying for both lines your monthly billswill automatically go down.

  • Saving on call charges

Also there is the saving on your phone calls using VOIP. The rates for using VOIP are normally substantially cheaper than standard fixed telephone providers. You can obtain price packages that can include all local, national and even international calls for a fraction of the price.

Even without a price  package sometimes these national & international calls can be for free as they avoid using the normal phone network where the charges are incurred.

  • Saving on infrastructure costs

Another reason is that the cost of VOIP service is much lower than comparable services from a standard telecommunications provider. If you are just starting up you will not need to add the same wiring and infrastructure that can increase start up costs to the point where some companies are unable to afford them.

Part of the savings comes from the fact that there is no longer a need to establish wiring for data and telephone.

  • How it can Increase your Productivity

Using VOIP for your business can also increase your productivity. Not only can you access your telephone calls from your computer whether you are in the office or not you can also access things such as phone messages and faxes that you may receive at the same time as you are accessing your email.

This means that regardless of whether you are actually in the office or not you will be able to continue to deal with business decisions quickly and effectively. There are many reasons to choose VOIP for your business. Choosing the right provider is only the first step in getting the flexible and affordable telecommunications system that your business needs.

The Best Places To Retire In 2018

With millions of Baby Boomers turning 65 each year, the massive generation is redefining retirement. Since half of boomers tell pollsters they expect to work at least part-time in retirement, the term is no longer synonymous with an end to paid employment. One thing retirement does mean to a large majority of boomers: the freedom to choose where they want to live, without regard to the location of a full-time job or the best school district.

Accordingly, Forbes presents its new list of The Best Places To Retire In 2018. In it, we highlight 25 places of varying size and character across the country, all of which we believe offer excellent retirement value—that is, a high quality of retirement living at an affordable price.  (After all, while you may want to work part-time in retirement, your goal ultimately is to be able to live well without a regular paycheck.)

A majority of our choices are in warm or moderate climates; that’s because those retirees who move from one region to another tend to head for the sun. But we also recognize that many retirees opt for shorter distance moves or chose new regions based on where their kids reside. So this year’s roster includes entries in 18 states in all four continental time zones. If frigid winters don’t bother you, Fargo, N.D.. has made our best list for the eighth straight year. Other cold spots on this year’s list include Colorado Springs and

For the complete list, click here. Our list is in alphabetical order. In effect, every entry is tied for No. 1. So Wenatchee, Wash. is just as worthy as Asheville, N.C..

Nine of our picks were also on last year’s list. Others have been on previous best lists, or on Forbes’ specialty retirement lists, including the most scenic retirement places; the best places to live without owning a car; and the best spots for pursing your individual passions, from the arts and learning to fine dining to land or water sports.  Absolute newcomers to any Forbes retirement list include Boone, N.C., Sun City, Ariz. and Vancouver, Wash.

There are many reasons why towns may appear on or disappear from our list, and there are close calls. Every year we look at more cities, and so the competition intensifies.  This year, we looked at data on more than 600 cities drawn from every state, as well as the District of Columbia.

Since the focus of this best list is retirement value, the most significant factors we weigh involve money. Among them: median home prices, the cost of living compared with the national average and state taxes. These factors largely rule out expensive Northeast and  West Coast cities, although the list does include Pittsburgh, Pa. and two cities in Washington State—Vancouver and Wenatchee.  (Note: If you can handle sky high taxes and housing costs, New York City and San Francisco both appear on our specialty lists of places to pursue your passions in retirement and places to retire without a car.) Read more

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A journalist for nearly five decades, I’ve written for Forbes since 1987. I’ve covered personal finance, taxes, retirement, nonprofits, scandals and other topics that interest me. I also am the author of a novel, OFFSIDE: A Mystery. Email me at: wbarrett.forbes@gmail.com .

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