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This is your chance to share your thoughts on women in business, networking, etc. Start your own post or comment on a member's thoughts. This is a great forum for sharing and learning from one another.
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  • 04/25/2018 7:03 PM | Deleted user

    Are your ears ringing? I am so excited for our BCPWN community, and I’ve recently had opportunities to share it. On April 6th, I had the pleasure of hosting Congressman Josh Gottheimer and local female leaders for a Women’s Roundtable at our offices in Ridgewood. In response to the importance of small business owners working together in order to thrive, I shared how BCPWN is a great source for hiring and partnering.


    Equally important, the Congressman speaks about the need for all of us to get involved and pay attention to the decisions that are being discussed, because what they do impacts our business and our businesses impact the community. He not only listens; he hears the challenges we face as business owners in New Jersey. And he takes action; by working to lower taxes, cut out-of-date regulations, train our workforce, invest in infrastructure, and support small businesses! 


    It’s no surprise, then, that he received the prestigious Spirit of Enterprise award by the US Chamber of Commerce. At an event that was hosted by the Paramus Chapter at Garden State Plaza, I was honored to speak in his support. I reinforced the contributions of groups like BCPWN and described ECG’s recent WBENC certification; something that other women business owners may want to explore. I promise to dedicate more space to its value in a future post, but for anyone who’s interested, you can visit them
    here.

    So it’s been an exciting time for our growing community. As I mentioned in a recent Facebook post from my business, I’m committed to keeping the conversation going and helping address the issues with actionable steps.

    I look forward to working with you to make sure that our voices are heard, and to help make an impact on each of our communities.

  • 04/25/2018 3:44 PM | Deleted user

    When it comes to business relationships, it’s important to focus as much on the word “relationship” as on the word "business." It’s often the small, personal gestures that mean the most to people. 


    Saying “thank you” is one of them.

     

    It’s amazing how far a simple “thank you” can go. Research shows that customers spend more and vendors are more likely to pay on time if they’re thanked regularly. 


    Here are five fun and fabulous ways to show your appreciation:


    1. Send a Treat. Who doesn’t love presents?

    2. Spend Quality Time Together. Schedule breakfast or lunch at your customer’s office. Invite the entire team – and then just chat.
    3. Write a Note. Can you remember the last time you received a handwritten thank-you card? This old-school approach is a proven way of showing gratitude.
    4. Start a Loyalty Program. Customers love the red-carpet treatment. Keep it simple – the easier your program is to understand, the more value it will have.
    5. Reward the Social Media-Savvy. Pop-up promotions and exclusive deals are the way to your followers’ hearts.

      Never underestimate the power of a sincere expression of gratitude. It’s a tried and true strategy for keeping the lines of communication open between you and your customers while keeping your business top-of-mind.


    • 04/18/2018 11:55 PM | Deleted user

      Keri Riccardi, co-owner of the Video Marketing Group is this month's member spotlight. Below, Keri shares her thoughts on networking, offers valuable career advice and gives us a peek at her interests when she's not working! 

      If you have your own news to share (our community is over 2,000 strong and growing!) and would like to be featured in an upcoming profile, complete this short survey and ensure that your membership is in good standing. 


      Enjoy!

      Mary E. Adams
      Executive Director, BCPWN

      Member Spotlight: Keri Riccardi, Co-Owner of the Video Marketing Group


      What's your "elevator pitch"? Tell us about your business.
      I love helping others express their passion, purpose, and mission. Through video content produced in my studio or on-location, corporations, small businesses, and non-profits have the power to convey their message through meaningful and deliberate video clips for their websites and social media, which engages their viewers/potential clients 24/7.


      What's your favorite networking tip?
      Leave your business cards in your office because networking is not a card game that involves dealing out your cards. It’s all about getting to know others and cultivating relationships with them.


      What is some of the best career advice you've been given?
      Seek opportunities to collaborate with non-profit organizations that strive to help, educate, and empower others.


      What are the words you work by (or what is your motto when it comes to the way you approach your career)?
      It’s all up to me! I am the one who is solely responsible for my decisions, words, actions, thoughts, and beliefs. No one ever is to blame.

      What are your hobbies and interests outside of your job?
      I love snowboarding, acting, writing, fashion, yoga, running, and promoting others (restaurants, businesses, people, charities, events.)


      Where do you find the most inspiration?
      I’m always invigorated by someone’s commitment to improving or enriching the lives of those in need. I’m also inspired by those who are open to growth and change.

      Click here to visit the Video Marketing Group website and check out Keri's business on Facebook

    • 04/11/2018 11:25 AM | Deleted user

      Working in today’s world is rushed, fast…you don’t want to miss a beat. Don’t want to miss a meeting. Don’t want to miss any information…but when your body and physical health issues slow you down, your work (and even your social life) can become compromised.


      At our upcoming May 2018 BCPWN First Friday Luncheon, we’ll be joined by Jennifer Collard, a local Physical Therapist, who specializes Women’s Pelvic and Abdominal  Health at Total Health Associates in Waldwick, NJ. Jen will speak openly and honestly about core and pelvic floor health issues, and the effects they have on the lives of women.

      She’ll explore easy ways to work your core and pelvic floor during your work day and commute, to help improve confidence, productivity, overall health and decrease stress. And also share how a variety of daily postures and activities leads to a healthy core.


      Here are Jen’s 4 Tips for setting yourself up for core and pelvic floor success: 


      1. Learn How to Properly do a Kegel: Alignment of your body can influence success. Remember to fully relax the pelvic floor after activating it. Muscles need to strengthen and lengthen…even the pelvic floor,which is comprised of a series of muscles. Lots of different cues can help a person learn to perform this muscle activation and relaxation properly. Try thinking to yourself: “squeeze and lift your bottom as if you are sitting on a cold seat”, “exhale and squeeze and lift.”


      2. Eliminate These Items from your Diet: Coffee, artificial sweeteners and carbonated drinks are among the items that can irritate the bladder and cause increased frequency to the restroom. Avoid or limit these right before an important meeting that you need to be present for the entire time or during a long commute. While on the flip side - dehydrating yourself (voluntarily drinking less or no water) is NOT the solution, either. Deydration irritates the lining of the bladder. The solution? Simple: 8 glasses of flat water each day.


      3. Be Posture Perfect: Variability in posture, position and activity level throughout the day is important for core, pelvic floor, respiratory, circulatory and especially stress management. Set these systems up for success by moving and changing position every 20 minutes or so, align your ribcage over your pelvis to normalize pressure and activate core with proper pressure, avoid contracting or gripping your buttocks or abdominals throughout the day as this put overbearing pressure onto the pelvic floor organs, respiration and circulation. Take a deep, slow cleansing breath each hour or even more often if possible.


      4. STOP “JIC’ing” (Just In Case) toileting: JIC’ing trains your bladder to “go” too frequently. Normal urination frequency during the day is between 4-6x’s/day. To defer/inhibit urge to use the restroom: Breathe slow, stay calm, distract your mind to decrease the signal to bladder, do a few Kegels (the right way). Slowly and calmly proceed to restroom if urge can not be delayed.



    • 03/28/2018 9:36 AM | Deleted user
      By Donna Gould, Founder & Chief Storyteller, Open Heart Creative

      Networking is a powerful tool for building professional relationships and strategic partnerships. Like all successful business endeavors, getting the best result takes time, effort, and a clear understanding of the possible pitfalls. 


      Here are five common networking mistakes and tips for how to avoid them:


      1 – Thinking You Know Everyone

      Cultivating relationships with people you know is vital, but making new connections can result in gaining valuable business insights in addition to generating leads. Look for opportunities to stretch beyond your current circle of colleagues. At BCPWN’s Work the Room, you can simultaneously learn from the experiences of people you’ve just met and find out if you have common services, interests, or needs.


      2 – Taking Without Giving

      Thinking only about what’s in it for you is arguably one of the biggest networking faux pas. Instead of launching onto your sales pitch right off the bat, focus on getting to know your new contact. Ask questions to discover what services or support you can provide for them. When you go the extra mile for someone else, they are far more likely to reciprocate when you ask for a favor or referral down the road.

            

      3 – Not Being Specific

      In order to get the most out of networking, you need to make sure people understand what you do, what makes your product or service special, and why they should refer you. The more specific you are, the easier it will be for new contacts to ask questions and determine how they can help.


      4 – Limiting the Playing Field

      If you limit your networking to professional groups or industry events, you may be short changing yourself. Be open to the possibility of making a business connection any time you step out the door. Strike up a conversation with someone while waiting in line or in the elevator, and you may be surprised to find they know the perfect vendor or job candidate.


      5 – Forgetting to Say Thank You

      We all know follow-up is essential to effective networking. But it’s easy to overlook the importance of showing gratitude to new contacts for sharing their time and resources, regardless of whether or not you came away with a referral. Sending a simple thank you note lets others know you appreciate them and their ideas, and lays the groundwork for building meaningful business relationships that provide genuine value.


      Sources:

      https://www.inc.com/5-networking-mistakes-ive-made-so-that-you-dont-have-to.html

      https://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2015/09/16/the-top-10-networking-mistakes


    • 03/28/2018 9:33 AM | Deleted user
      by Beth Donalds: The Business Doctor

      Despite repeated warnings from the IRS, taxpayers continue to fall victim to this scam: Criminals claiming to be IRS officials call and demand payment of a bogus tax bill, conning victims into providing personal information and sending cash.


      To date, taxpayers have collectively paid over $23 million to scammers. With tax season in full swing, here is what you need to know to avoid becoming a victim:


      Callers use scare tactics to intimidate and bully a victim into paying. They may threaten to arrest, deport or revoke the license of their victim.

      Scammers alter caller ID to make it look like the IRS or another agency is calling.

      Cons make it look official, often providing an actual IRS address where the victim is instructed to mail a payment receipt. Others use fake IRS documents or official IRS letterhead in emails or regular mail.

      The IRS will not call you to demand immediate payment. If you owe taxes, the IRS will first send you a bill in the mail. They will never demand that you pay your taxes a certain way or ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

      Don’t be fooled! To report a scam call, contact the U.S.Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) using the IRSImpersonation Scam Reporting webpage or call 800-366-4484.


    • 03/21/2018 9:06 AM | Deleted user

      As many of you know, one way we learn about what inspires our members and helps drive their career success is our monthly Member Spotlight email.This month we're adding the feature to our blog!


      We're excited to hear from Kirsten Bunch, Founder of The Changemaker Mentorship, who helps women start nonprofits, foundations, socially focused businesses and other "changemaking" initiatives. She's also writing a book!



      What is your networking philosophy or best tip to share with the group?

      Get out and meet new people, even when you don't feel like it. Don't ever cancel a networking opportunity or just not show up, unless you have a really good reason. Listen without judgement and ask questions. Be interested instead of interesting.


      What is some of the best career advice you've been given?

      If your job or career doesn't feel right, change it. If your heart is pulling you in another direction, don't let fear keep you from exploring it.


      What are the words you work by (or what is your motto when it comes to the way you approach your career)?

      I'm in the business of making our communities healthy, safer and more just. I know I am on the right career path when my clients want to create a better world as much, if not more, than I do.


      What are your hobbies and interests outside of your job?

      I play roller derby in order to give my brain a break from work. It takes a lot of focus and is completely exhausting!


      Where do you find the most inspiration?

      In my clients. They come to me with ideas to change their communities and I am floored every day by what they are able to accomplish.


      Do you have a favorite software system or app that helps you in your business that you would like to share with the group?

      I love Canva because I can create good looking marketing material without spending tons of money. Also, Calendly makes it easy for my clients to book time with me.


      Click here to learn more about Kirsten and The Changemaker Mentorship. Follow Kirsten's Facebook Group to find out how you can be part of her upcoming book launch; inspiring successful women to give back to their communities in a powerful way.


      Members in good standing who also wish to be profiled can take this short survey. 


      Mary


      Mary E. Adams
      Executive Director, BCPWN


    • 03/14/2018 1:22 PM | Deleted user

      by Jill Eras, MS, MFT


      We all dream – whether or not we remember, this phenomenon is one we all share. Have you ever wondered why? Dreams have a profound and sacred purpose in our lives, indeed, they are gifts given to us night after night because they are our teachers and because we are loved. Each dream is designed by your own psyche (soul) to teach you about you in your own language. Our bodies connect to our souls through the feelings and experience of dreams – we learn how to decipher our own unique “road map” by thoroughly and consciously relating to our dreams. When we value the possibility to grow through engaging our dreams, the process begins almost immediately.


      Here are some tips to jumpstart your dream life:

      1. Keep a clean and orderly sleep space.
      2. Have a bedtime routine that includes a predictable bedtime, soothing sleep aides such as aromatherapy or music, and screen-free downtime.
      3. Limit caffeine and alcohol.
      4. Keep a journal or voice recorder handy so that you can quickly scribble the memory of dreams as you awake each day.
      5. Most importantly: set your intention to remember your dreams.


      Looking forward to the opportunity to hear about some of your dreams when we meet on April 6th! This is my invitation to step into the world of your dreams; what you will learn about you will enthrall. - Jill


    • 02/28/2018 3:55 PM | Deleted user

      The recent tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School took on special significance for the people in Bergen County. Alyssa Alhadeff, one of the 17 victims, and her family used to live in Woodcliff Lake. And many of us know other students and families from Parkland, Florida.  


      Over the weekend, my colleague’s niece, Ruby, was on a TV news segment, along with her classmate. Both girls attend MSD and retold their experiences. Both girls are also using their creativity and their connections to raise money and help the community rebuild. I am inspired by all the powerful voices of change, coming from the students and faculty at MSD.


      Ruby and her sister Peri, another Parkland student, are also performers at Broadway Bound, a woman owned business in Coral Springs. For those of us who happen to be in South Florida on March 9th, or wish to contribute, Broadway Bound is performing a tribute concert to the students and staff of MSD.


      And here in Bergen County, Alyssa’s family and friends will be celebrating her life and “all the children of our community” at Superdome Sports on March 18th, with an evening of sports, activities, music and dance.


      Through our connections, our creativity, our voices and our contributions, together we can all be #MSDSTRONG.

    • 02/28/2018 3:46 PM | Deleted user
      The idea of negotiating can be intimidating. As consumers, we have been trained to pay the price marked on goods or services without question. If we feel the price is too high, we abandon the sale and look for cheaper options. But we have the option of asking for a lower price…so why don’t we? Because it makes us uncomfortable ... Because we are embarrassed ... Because we don’t want anyone to think we can’t afford it!

      Get over it! Step outside your comfort zone...ask
      for a discount! Follow the “Rule of the 4 B’s”:


      Be Brave: Ask the question “Is that the best you can do? It’s a simple question to ask, and politely posing it to the right person is absolutely free. Put the ball in their court and see what they’ll do in the interest of winning your business.


      Be polite: It’s hard to resist a pleasant person with a positive disposition. Being kind and courteous  can net you discounts anywhere you wish to flash your pearly whites. Many times you can make someone’s day just by being nice to them – once you win them over, you’ll be surprised just how far they’ll go to help you out.


      Be Powerful: You have the money and they are selling a product. Before you interact with the sales person, settle on the maximum price you are willing to pay for your item and never exceed that price. Take control of the buying process.


      Be Green: Merchant credit card transaction fees can range from 2% to 5%. Offering to pay for your purchase in cash could easily save you money if  the vendor is able to slash these built-in fees from a cash-only sale. Hint: Ask to see the Manager.  The Manager knows the merchandise markup, and can discount instantly.


      The 1st time is the hardest...then you will never pay full price again!


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