Signs Of Addiction – How To Know When Someone You Care About Needs Help

Drugs and alcohol affect the lives of millions of Americans every year causing devastation to families, friends, loved ones and associates. It is said that on average each substance abortion abusive person affects 16 people around them, this may be an understated estimate. Almost everyone has had to deal with someone else's drug or alcohol problem or knows of someone who has. You are not alone.

You are also not without support. Al-Anon, Alateen (for teens), Families Anonymous, Nar-Anon Family Support Groups, ToughLove Support Groups, counselers, support agencies, friends, and family can all provide support. Al-Anon and the other support groups can help you to understand the signs and behaviors that used to confound you and help you develop ways to cope and deal with the problem. The only requirement to attend Al-Anon is your concern for someone else's alcohol and / or drug use.

If you think you can deal with a drug or alcohol problem on your own, THINK AGAIN! Even trained professionals rarely succeed in resolving someone's addiction while they continue to use. You will need support and lots of it. Make use of all the support you can find and make it your goal to get the loved one into professional care.

Alcoholics and drug addicts think they are all amazingly unique, but as you get to understand the signs of addiction and the logic they use, they are amazingly the same in many ways. Let's take a careful look at some of the typical signs of drug and alcohol abuse displayed by a using person. Virtually no one will have all these symptoms, but if the person you care about is using, you will see several of them.

1) They drink more than those around them and develop more tolerance (need to drink more to get the same effect).

2) They may drink more quickly than others.

3) They experience "blackouts" or lapses of memory from using.

4) They hide their alcohol / drugs to protect their supply or to use in secret.

5) They drink or drug more than they intend to.

6) They utilize lies, excuses, alibis, rationalizations, and denial to cover up their using.

7) Changes in behavior – even when not using. Negative effects on family, friends, job, school, and associates.

8) Negative changes in attitude, health, appearance, mood, or work effort / quality.

9) Drinking alone or sneaking drinks.

10) Possession of drug related materials. Rolling papers, liquor bottles, drug related posters / magazines / music, pipes, bongs, etc.

11) Isolating. Shuts people out, is secretive, spends much time alone, comes home late.

12) Smells of alcohol or pot. The person will often deny use this obvious sign.

13) Person is violent or manipulative. Manipulative behavior is the hallmark of the addicted person. Violence and using go hand-in-hand.

14) The person may borrow money or steal to support drug / alcohol use. Person often can not explain what they spend all their money on. Are items or cash missing at home or at friends? Is liquor missing or watered down in the home? Have they sold personal items to pay for drugs?

15) Accidents, job loss, broken friendships, family arguments, and trouble with the law may occur, even when not using.

16) Eyes are oddly dilated, too wide, too small. Red eyes.

17) Person is overly defensive and avoids responsibility for their actions.

18) Nagging cough, diarrhea, vomiting, weight loss, dark circles under eyes, headaches, trembling.

19) Change in friends. People who use often need to be around other people who use to provide social support for their using and to maintain contacts with those who can supply them with drugs.

20) Withdrawal / Hangovers. Headache, vomiting, aches, run-down, sleeping late, using in the morning.

21) Burn or cut marks on body, tattoos, brown-stained fingers, change in clothing style / hair.

22) Loss of interest in activities / sports / hobbies.

23) Loss of motivation, lethargic, general loss of interest, apathy.

24) Skipping work, meetings, school, family events, appointments, meals, important events.

25) Secretive about where they have been, what they have been doing.

26) Attempt to cover-up signs of using. Sneaking into house, incense, mouthwash, eye-drops, perfume / cologne, chewing gum, mints.

I hope this article has been informed, but remember this problem should not be tackled alone. Utilize all the support you can find, such as family and friends, to help you weather the difficulties ahead. Also be sure to have the help of someone who knows more about drugs and alcohol than you do, such as Al-Anon, Nar-Anon, and Drug and Alcohol Counselors.

With a solid plan and some dedication, you can expect over the addiction of another and assist them in getting help. My best wishes go with you always, good luck!

Anon Family Support Groups 1-800-344-2666

Nar-Anon Family Support Group 1-213-547-5800

ToughLove International 1-800-333-1069

Source by Paul Cline

Lose 30 Pounds in 60 Days – How to Lose 30 Lbs Fat in Less Than 2 Months!

Do you want to lose 30 pounds in 60 days but don’t know how? If so then today is your lucky day as I will explain just what you can do to drop that fat in less than 2 months with little work. That’s right, no exercise, expensive diet pills, starving on low calorie diets and best of all no stress! This weight loss method is the most revolutionary way to lose weight since instead of always struggling with losing weight it will train your body how to burn more fat than normal while becoming healthier at the same time!

It’s Called Calorie Shifting

So just what is calorie shifting? It’s a dieting method focused on boosting metabolic function while eating food, possibly more than you already do! You see when you starve your body as most low calorie diets tend to do you in fact reduce your bodies ability to burn fat by stunting your metabolism. Your body is always in a fight or flight balance internally, when you suddenly start avoiding calories it causes your body to conserve and hold onto fat stores within the body much more aggressively. This causes a backlash effect when you finish the diet as the lbs come rolling back on.

With calorie shifting you don’t have to worry about this, because instead of working against food you are actively working with it to increase metabolism and burn more calories than you are consuming. Best of all the diet is healthier because you get nutrients that are necessary without lacking them as you would on a low calorie diet. Calorie shifting is the future of dieting, many people are just stuck in the mindset that you need to avoid calories to lose weight and it’s simply not true. In fact if you look at people who exercise, the ones who eat more and exercise will still lose far more weight than those who eat less and don’t stimulate their metabolism with either working our calorie shifting.

Source by Rachel Archer

How To Sell Guitars – Make Money Selling Guitars and Musical Equipment

Are you looking to become a guitar reseller or open a guitar store?

I can tell you from experience that selling guitars is a fun and rewarding business to pursue. I love meeting musicians, helping to spread the music, and frankly, I just love being around guitars. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re learning how to sell guitars:

Business Licensing/Taxes

The first thing to keep in mind when selling anything in large quantities is business licensing and taxes. First, make sure you keep a record of everything you’ve sold. When it comes time to pay taxes, you’ll need to know the exact nature of the business you’ve done. One of the biggest worries with a start-up reselling business is getting audited by the IRS. In the event of an audit, the more information you can provide the better. As you begin to make a modest profit from reselling, make sure to set money aside for taxes. In many states, the buyer is required to pay sales tax for each transaction, and it’s the seller’s responsibility to set this money aside at the time of the transaction.

You will also need to obtain a business license. These are easy to acquire in most states for a small fee. In many states, a reseller business license will come with a Reseller Permit, with which one is able to purchase in bulk without having to pay a state sales tax. If you start selling a lot of guitars, such as more than 5 per month, then you should seriously consider obtaining a business license. Along with helping your business to be more accountable, it often earns you special rights and tax breaks that will help your business grow.

Finding Your Niche

There are many ways to sell guitars. Websites like Craigslist and eBay are great places to sell guitars, but they often have plenty of competition. Depending on where you’re located, Craigslist might be a great way to spread the word locally. There are many people who are good at repairing, modifying, or parting out guitars (taking them apart and selling the parts separately). Your “niche” will depend partially on your location, but mainly it will depend on your passion. If you love talking to people in a private setting, Craigslist might be your best bet. If you love tinkering with and parting out guitars, you could consider selling parts on eBay, or to a local music shop. If you love the idea of opening up a storefront, or augmenting one you may already own with some quality guitars, maybe you’re meant to be a guitar salesman. If you don’t know which method will work best for you, it can never hurt to try things out. You’ll never know if you don’t try!

Opening a Guitar Store

Opening a guitar store can be a huge challenge, but it can also be very rewarding. With the recent interest in the internet and online retail, many guitar shops are going out of business. Guitar Center and Musician’s Friend, two of the top guitar stores in the country, have grown so large that it’s often nearly impossible to compete with them directly. That doesn’t mean that it’s not possible. When opening a guitar store, make sure you’re offering a completely unique service. Whether your store has the perfect location, selection, staff, or pricing, it’s imperative that your store has the perfect something. We are living in troubling economic times, but that doesn’t mean that stores are closing for no reason. It simply means that, as the times change and technology evolves, so does the public demand for services. One must look at their business and be able to clearly see the areas in which they excel. Find out what makes (or could make) your guitar store great, and keep it up. Publicize your specialty, let everyone know what it is you do and why you’re the best for them.

Be Creative

As I said before, there are many ways to sell guitars. One of the best things you can do when creating your guitar business is to think outside the box and be creative. With enough creativity, you can create a whole new way to do business and thus create a whole new market. Regardless of the state of the economy, consumers will always pay for something great, something they believe in. Your customers are people, and they get excited about new things. People love having fun, and they love watching things improve and being a part of the future. It’s important to realize that your ideal guitar business model might be something that’s never been done before, but also something that there’s a huge demand for. Write a list of all the ways that you could sell guitars, then keep going, keep writing. No idea is too crazy. Creative businesses are the way of the future, and there’s nothing stopping you from creating the top guitar business in the world.

Shop for Discount/Wholesale Guitars in Bulk

You may have a pretty good idea of what your guitar business will look like and how you will start it up. Now you need the product, and you need it at the right price. How do the big guitar companies do it? Sometimes they have invested millions of dollars in their relationships with major manufacturers, ensuring that they get the best exclusive deal on all the goods. Most of the time, they just have a smart business model. It’s easy to get tons of musical equipment to sell, you just have to follow some strict rules, and pay top dollar. Many stores sell new, name brand equipment, and make 0% profit. The new equipment is just a way to get people in the door, and all of the profit is made from selling used equipment. This is just an example, but you should keep in mind that some products are made to attract customers, while others are made to give you the profits you’re looking for.

Working With Manufacturers

If you plan on selling refurbished guitars, sometimes it’s a great idea to supplement your inventory with new guitars directly from the manufacturers. Sometimes these guitars can be very difficult to acquire, and even more difficult to make a profit from, but they can definitely help get you some foot traffic (or internet traffic). Most manufacturers are more than willing to let you sell their products, assuming you follow their strict guidelines. For example, most will require you to have a storefront (which can’t be too close to another authorized dealer), sell a certain amount of guitars per month, purchase a large amount of their products up front (often you will not be able to choose which guitars to purchase), and charge no less than the price they determine. For a small business, it can be rough. But if you know what you’re getting into, working with manufacturers can be a great way to increase your business. If someone buys a new guitar from you, they’re more likely to come back for another. If someone walks in your door to buy a new guitar, they might be open to getting a refurbished one instead. The more business the better, as long as you can meet all the requirements.

Source by D Patrick Pflager

Future Soldiers – What Can You Bring To Basic Training?

The most commonly asked questions recruits ask today is “What Can You Bring to Basic Training?” There are several things you can pack up for boot camp but you don’t want to forget these items such as running shoes, a cell phone, stationery supplies, a debit card, cash and also civilian clothes. After all, you want to have the best experience as possible with the least amount of problems in basic training. Here are some of the few things your allowed to take with you to boot camp.

Running shoes. You can bring your own running shoes to basic. You can bring your running shoes (tennis shoes) but it’ll be up to your drill sergeants on whether they’ll let you wear them or not. Some drill sergeants will make you buy the shoes that they sell at reception. It depends on where you go to training and some drill sergeants let Soldiers wear their own shoes and they didn’t have to buy them.

Cell Phones. You can bring your own cell phone but it’ll be up to the drill sergeant’s decision if you’ll receive any phone privileges (cell phone or phone booth). You can keep your cell phone during reception but once you’re at basic then you’ll have to hand them over to the drill sergeants. You will not get them back until you start white phase or every other Sundays.

Stationary Supplies. You can take your own stationery supplies such as paper, envelopes and stamps or you can buy them while you are at basic training. You have the freedom to write letters every night and have it sent out to a family or friend every day. You will have to do 10 push ups for every letter that you receive during mail call which is worth it.

Debit Card. It is highly recommended that you bring your own debit card tied to your account. You will have to resupply later for personal hygiene’s and to withdraw money from the ATM to pay for haircuts at the PX. Some things are not free in training and you’ll have to reach into your pocket sometimes to pay for the basics such as a haircut or if you want to buy a class yearbook.

Address book. Bring an address book listing your family members and next to kin. It’s very important to have a mailing address of someone so that you can send letters and add them to your life insurance, emergency contact and beneficiary when you in-process during the reception battalion.

Cash. Bring a few extra dollars but not more than $50 dollars. You may never know what might happen during your journey to boot camp. You might need to get a cab or buy something to eat.

Civilian Clothes. Bring the clothes on your back because on the first day you arrive to the reception battalion, the Army will issue you a lot of uniforms and gear. You will wear your PT’s or ACU uniform. You are not allowed to wear your civilian clothes anymore and you must dress according to the uniform of that day.

Source by Gregory Warren

Mesothelioma: Legal Ramifications

A Brief Overview

Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that attacks the linings of the lungs and the intestinal tract, and also the sac covering the heart. It is also called epithelial mesothelioma, as it affects the membrane in the pleura, the pericardium and the peritoneum. It is not lung-cancer per se. The mesothelioma-lung cancer confusion has been there earlier. Mesothelioma is merely a form of cancer that affects the lining covering the lungs. It comes in three forms:

o Pleural mesothelioma

o Peritoneal mesothelioma

o Pericardial mesothelioma

Causes of Mesothelioma

The primary cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. This can be direct exposure at the work place, or secondary exposure (when the victim is exposed to asbestos through coming in contact with someone who has already been exposed to asbestos). Despite all the pain and the loss that the workers faced, there was some hope in the form of legal recourse. Workers started suing the plants they worked in, and soon the legal battle against mesothelioma reached epic proportions. Even today, there are around 3,000 cases of mesothelioma being diagnosed in the United States every year. While the treatment is painful and not always successful, these mesothelioma victims at least have the hope of monetary compensation to help them fight mesothelioma.

The first manifestations of mesothelioma were seen as early as the 1950s and the 1960s. At that time, the workers in plants and other work areas that used asbestos in some form or the other were unaware of the lethal side of asbestos. The management at these work areas – docks, industrial plants, equipment manufacturers, and many more, the list is endless – soon came to know of the adverse effects of asbestos. However, for some reason they kept quiet about it. Their focus was on reduced costs and profits, it seems, and they remained mum about the harmful effects that asbestos could have on their workers. Asbestos, after all, had huge advantages over other material, which was why it was used so much irrespective of the genre of industry. This over the years proved to be a very, very costly error on their part.

Mesothelioma Litigation – Did it Help?

The implications of asbestos use are staggering, primarily because of the range of products it is used in. From office buildings to toasters to car brakes to shipyards, asbestos was used almost across the breadth of the industrial sector. A publication in 1935 by the American Journal of Cancer – Pulmonary Asbestosis: Carcinoma of the Lung in Asbesto-Silicosis – first raised the suspicions of people from the research and medical fields of the connection between the presence of asbestos and the unusually high death rates and lung-related diseases in the industrial sector. This connection was confirmed in 1955, and soon the continued use of asbestos despite knowing about its deadlier side became a legal nightmare for the industrial sector. Mesothelioma litigation in the United States has enabled mesothelioma victims win hundreds of thousands of dollars in lawsuits from their callous employers. It has been one of the successes in the battle against mesothelioma indirectly, and against the irresponsible attitudes of the management of workplaes that used asbestos, directly.

The Legal Aspect of Mesothelioma

Over the years, the legal benefits that mesothelioma victims have received have been enormous. The symptoms of mesothelioma manifest much after the initial inhalation of the asbestos fibers. Mesothelioma treatment is also painful and expensive. The compensations awarded to them have helped them at least cover their medical expenses. Nowadays there are mesothelioma law firms – law firms that specialize in mesothelioma. They have trained mesothelioma lawyers and mesothelioma attorneys. These lawyers specialize in mesothelioma compensation cases.

It can happen that a victim may shy away from legal recourse because they fel that they do not have adequate financial support to pay the lawyer. However, this is a scenario they need not worry about. All they have to do is contact a mesothelioma support group, or a mesothelioma help group. These are present all over the United States. The patient can also go online and put a search for mesothelioma legal assistance cells by typing mesothelioma and then typing the name of the state or area they are from in the search field of the search engine they are using. This is not a fixed rule – they can type it in any order. For example – mesothelioma California, mesothelioma Texas, mesothelioma lawyer texas, New York mesothelioma, California mesothelioma lawyer, etc.

How are Mesothelioma Lawyers so Successful?

One of the basic things in awarding compensation is for the judge or the jury to decide whether the harm done was intentional, or whether it was the result of a choice the victim made, in simple terms. In many cases, the circumstance of a victim is a result of a choice he or she made. For example, in a smoking-related cancer case, the choice to smoke was made by the victim. However, in the case of mesothelioma, the situation is different. The circumstance of mesothelioma in the victim could have been averted if only his employers had been more careful, had made him aware about the risks the job entailed, and then let him choose, besides providing him whatever protection required to prevent him from being exposed to asbestos. This is one area that mesothelioma lawyers and mesothelioma attorneys have been able to successfully work on.

After the initial slew of mesothelioma cases and lawsuits, now laws are firmly in place to safeguard the health interests of the worker. Besides, in the event of someone actually suffering from mesothelioma, there are some guidelines towards seeking legal redress for them as well. Mesothelioma law is strict and helps provide fair verdicts in mesothelioma-related compensation cases.

Guidelines for Mesothelioma Victims Seeking Legal Action

The primary rule of thumb while filing a mesothelioma lawsuit is that it has to be filed immediately on diagnosis of the disease. In fact, in many of the states across the United States, mesothelioma laws stipulating the timeframe within which a lawsuit can be filed are in place. On diagnosis, you can contact a mesothelioma lawyer through your local mesothelioma activists or mesothelioma group for more mesothelioma information relating to lawsuits. The work of a mesothelioma lawyer or mesothelioma attorney is not limited to just fighting your case. A mesothelioma attorney usually has an extensive network of contacts – other victims, mesothelioma case histories, good treatment facilities, nature of treatment options available, in fact, for most mesothelioma-related information. His specialization is a distinct advantage over a lawyer who doesn’t have too much of an idea about mesothelioma.

The government is also taking steps to ensure that workers are safe from exposure to asbestos. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has passed laws and regulations stipulating safety measures and also has set in motion plans to ban and phase out the use of asbestos as much as possible. You can find more information about this at the EPA website – http://www.epa.gov.

You can also browse the Internet for mesothelioma-related information, mesothelioma pictures, more information on asbestos, etc.

Resources

o http://www.mesothelioma.org

o http://www.mesolink.org

o http://www.asbestosnews.com

Source by Ajishnu Sharma

Residual Income Ideas

I have run businesses for over 25 years and it has always struck me that it would be a better way to describe it as “I have been in business for over 25 years and they have run me!”

What I’m trying to say is that the main driving force of being in business for me was to become rich, be my own boss and have more free time to enjoy life doing the things I like to do.

Rarely has it worked out that way, the roller coaster ride of being in business has more often than not led to me working more hours and having less time. A busy fool!

Can I tell you that it is only when I got to grips with the internet and started to come up with some residual income ideas on the net that I began to understand the power of the internet and its ability to be able to provide me with lots of methods of residual income whilst at the same time allowing me to be in control of the time and effort that I needed to put in to create great residual income.

What creating residual income websites has done for me is free up my time to begin to enjoy my life and actually concentrate on what I love to do rather than what I have to do to earn money.

There are hundreds of residual income programs and residual income jobs that can give you the money you are looking to earn.

I found it to be a brilliant way of having recurring income affiliate programs which effectively means you can have a salesforce of thousands for free all earning you cash. I have set up a great affiliate program finder and it is easy and straight forward to do.

So having previously been the proud but overworked and underpaid owner of businesses over the past 25 years I have now been granted the best opportunity in the world to really take advantage of having real financial security and getting rid of my money worries whilst at the same time divesting myself of the aggravation of having to employ staff.

Now I really am my own boss. I am at last free and I’m setting up all the automated residual income programs I want which let me sit back and enjoy my life at last.

It’s not difficult to do, anyone can do it. You too can enjoy a great passive income, you just need the knowledge and a bit of enthusiasm to get started.

Like most things in life if you want to see something really well you have to be prepared to put the work in.

However, unlike most things in life, once you are off and running with your residual income idea set up you are able to spend less time doing it and yet see more return coming in.

Source by Steve N Richardson

Retail Banking – A New Way For Customer Service

With the Independent Commission on UK Banking recently issuing its long awaited report on the state of our current banking landscape, the opportunities contained within it to improve retail banking customer service have been seemingly ‘lost in the noise’ – with our government apparently wanting to deflect attention by kicking it into the long grass.

But there is no escaping headline issues that emerged from the final report of Sir John Vickers and colleagues, namely how do we cope with banks that are too big to fail and how do we stop the risk of speculative investment banking toxifying retail accounts?

Retail UK banking, in contrast to investment banking, should be a simple business in which the bank takes our savings, marks them up and lends them to others, or vice versa. But this simple process has become an unwieldy beast with almost everyone you talk to having a retail bank atrocity story.

A recently conducted study of 1,000 nationally representative retail bank customers, with almost 70% believing that banks don’t care very much about what the public think of them, over 75% rating the public image and reputation of the banks’ retail operations as mediocre to dreadful, and an eye-watering 86% thinking that the image and reputation of the banks will not improve or will actually decline over the next six months.

Two influences, linked but not identical, seem to be at work. The first factor is the momentum towards online banking and the spotlight that puts on the slow and ponderous ‘old way’ of doing things. Ask yourself which is preferable – accessing a bank account from the train, your own home or an office, or trudging round to the bank in the rain and joining a queue? Older customers feel less habituated to the online world but the young customers ‘voting with their feet’ adds considerable impetus to this inevitable online momentum.

Thirty years ago a very senior UK bank official remarked in an unguarded moment that High Street banking was hopelessly and irredeemably uneconomic – and nothing that’s happened in the intervening years has made that judgment less telling.

The cost of maintaining a local branch network has become a dead weight hung from the necks of banks. If bearing this burden produced contented customers there might be something to be said for it, but it simply fails to do so. Branch managers have largely been deprived of the power to make decisions on loans, thereby further reducing the reasons to bother visiting the branch. When did you last do so? First Direct has responded to this economic reality with the intelligent stratagem of not having any branches. Yet how have other banks responded?

The second factor is the way retail bank brands are built, maintained and developed. Various studies show that marketing slogans, for example, have very low recognition amongst the public and the only one that had any genuine customer awareness was HSBC’s ‘the World’s Local Bank.’ This slogan was launched in March 2002, showing that it takes a long time and costs a great deal of money to get any sort of traction and make an impact.

The customers now pay more attention to the testimony of other customers than they do to promotional campaigns, with enthusiastic customers and ‘brand ambassadors’ being the market builders of the future.

A new business model is consequently required for retail UK banking. The old business model was bank-centric where the bank saw itself as a central resource and the customer could approach the bank and humbly inquire whether any of its supplier-defined services met the customer’s needs. Motivated by incentives, bank staff tried to convince customers that products like Payment Protection Insurance met genuine needs. So much for ‘Customer Service’.

There is a clear demand for a customer-centric business model, but few banks appear to be working effectively to meet this demand. When used properly, ‘new media’ can create genuine conversations with their customers and, as that famous book ‘The Cluetrain Manifesto’ puts it, “the market becomes a conversation”.

Instead of their services being defined by what the bank wants to offer, they can be defined by what the customers need. The ‘bank to customer’ polarity is reversed and the customer becomes the market-maker of the future.

It all comes down to the culture of the banks themselves. In today’s globalised and commoditised world there is always ‘choice’ but retail banks have sidestepped this evolution because of customer inertia. The general perception is that it is simply too much hassle to change your bank account – and if you do then the next bank you move to will be no better.

This has resulted in a culture of complacency amongst UK banks. They’ve been too big and too powerful for too long to worry too much what the customer ACTUALLY thinks. But this will change.

There are new competitors like Metro Bank, dedicated to a customer-centric model, that are changing the game and there is little doubt that the tipping point will come soon.

The bank that will win this battle will be the one that changes its culture towards the agile, customer service centric ethos that is winning out in different sectors and industries across the world.

Of course this conversion is not going to be easy for the big banks to achieve. At board level the banks are often aware of what’s happening and what’s needed. But layers of die-hard middle management are convinced that the old bank-centric model has enough life left to see out their careers. One major UK bank told us that they already have a team working on customer conversations, and that our research was a day late and a dollar short. But one look at the detailed reports from their customers shows their efforts may be costly but are simply not working. Bank customers are keen – perhaps even desperate – to enunciate their real needs, provided the banks are ready to listen and respond.

Now that the Independent Commission on UK Banking has issued its final report there is a window of opportunity in bank customer service for those senior managers in retail banking who are savvy enough to see it. The question that needs to be answered is will it encourage the banks to hold meaningful conversations with that 86 percent of customers who think the reputation of the banks will fail to improve any time soon? Let’s hope so.

Source by Tony Lord

Top Five Benefits of Cloud Computing for Small Business

Many hosted services are offered over the web for a variety of business needs. The general term used to refer to all of these is cloud computing. Cloud computing allows online companies to use resources over the internet rather than build and maintain their own in-house infrastructures.

Cloud computing is a trendy term that can be heard everywhere these days. Simply put, it refers to storing and accessing information and applications over the web instead of getting them all stored on the hard drive of your computer.

Storing or running programs from your hard drive is called local storage. This means that everything you need is physically there with you, making access to data easy and fast, especially for the one computer and the others connected to it through a local network. This was how many industries functioned for a long time before the cloud came along.

The “cloud” refers to the internet. This calls back to the times in office presentations when the internet was represented by a puffy cloud that accepts and gives information as it hovers above everything.

You may be using cloud computing at some aspect of life without realising it. This applies to online services that you use to send email, edit your documents, stream films or TV shows, listen to music, play games online, or store files and images. Cloud computinga makes all these things possible behind it all.

The first services to use cloud computing are a couple of decades old, rising fast so that a wide range of organisations are already using the service. This includes startups to big corporations as well as non-profits and government agencies.

Cloud computing at a glance

According to a study by the IDC, 50% of information technology will transition to the cloud within 5-10 years. Among the industries that rely heavily on data are the financial sector, telecommunications, technology, health care, government, advertising, retail, gaming, energy and data services.

Furthermore, 82% of companies have found significant savings in moving to the cloud. 60% of businesses already make use of cloud-based IT for operations. 82% of companies are also planning for a multi-cloud strategy.

These stats show that cloud computing holds much promise as a rising industry as well as a valuable resource for companies to take advantage of.

Cloud solutions for business

There are three different types of cloud solutions that businesses can choose from to find the best fit – private cloud, hybrid cloud and public cloud. Each offer different features and benefits. But with each type, the end result stays the same: cloud computing can be done wherever you are, at any time.

Private cloud

Private cloud works in industries with concerns for privacy, including medium businesses and more established enterprises that need to meet standards for security and compliance.

One example is IoT companies, such as those who trace customers through their phones. Other examples include health data companies, e-commerce sites that store credit card data, industries with high intellectual property concerns, and companies that emphasise data sovereignty.

Private cloud is managed by an in-house team of IT personnel or by a private host.

Private cloud offers complete control and flexibility, enabling businesses to manage their own dedicated resources within a third party datacentre.

Hybrid cloud

Hybrid cloud is for companies that prefer the security offered by private cloud. This type of cloud solution is best for workloads that are highly dynamic and prone to changeability. This includes enterprises that can be split into two spheres, sensitive and non-sensitive.

Hybrid cloud also works best for businesses with seasonal data spikes, big data processing, and those with workloads involving API compatibility and requiring solid connection to a network. Hybrid cloud takes its name from the fact that it is managed by both in-house and external resources.

This mix of private and public clouds offer blending of such services as Office 365 for email with other applications that businesses don’t want to be made available in a shared environment.

Public cloud

Public cloud is for industries that have a significant amount of data with no major concerns for privacy. Companies that use this service opt for a pay-as-you-go structure. This type of cloud solution is managed by third party providers.

Industries that use public cloud include those in development and testing, development platform, training servers, one-off big data projects and websites with public information, product descriptions and brochures.

Public cloud is perfect for services, applications and storage that are made publicly available as well as those that use shared resources that are managed by the cloud provider.

More benefits in the cloud

Now that you know the different types of cloud solutions available, it’s time to go over the benefits of moving to the cloud. As a growing trend, cloud computing offers many. Here are five of them.

1. Time-saving, on-demand services

Cloud computing features self-service delivery for different types of workloads and needs. What makes it so attractive to businesses is that any service can be available on-demand. This effectively removes the need for companies to maintain in-house IT staff, especially for small businesses, or manage physical computer resources.

Cloud hosting allows users to get access to their files from any device, anywhere and at any time. This means that files don’t get stored in just one computer, enabling faster operations and availability. Storing in the cloud also makes it safer for businesses to protect their files, with faster backup options and recovery in cases of breaches or similar scenarios.

According to TSG, 45% of companies that use private cloud solution in their operations have enjoyed significant reduction of the time it takes to install applications. This time-saving feature enables companies to enjoy faster processes and improve productivity for employees.

Cloud computing can make integration easier for you. A lot of cloud computing applications include an Application Programming Interface (API) where you can find apps that are compatible instead of having to pay to have them customised for you so you can integrate them.

2. Flexibility

One of the biggest benefits offered by cloud computing is its flexibility. People on your team can access files and information that are relevant to work anywhere and on any device. In a highly mobile world, this is especially important.

Moreover, many companies now offer flexible working arrangements, such as remote workers and telecommuting. With cloud computing, employees can access work files even when they are not in the office, making it easier for them to work wherever they are. For small businesses, this also makes it easier for them to easily manage their operations wherever they are.

Increased flexibility and mobility enable businesses to let their employees use the devices they are comfortable with. This can include tablets, laptops and smartphones, helping employees improve their personal productivity.

With this type of elasticity, companies are able to scale up as their computing needs increase as well as scale down when they decrease. This saves them from having to invest in infrastructure that may not be needed later on in time.

3. Lower costs with pay per use

One of the best immediate benefits of moving your business to the cloud is that there is significant financial savings involved. Cloud computing fully makes use of hardware. With virtualisation, the value of the physical server is increased, giving businesses the opportunity to do more with less.

Cloud computing enables businesses, especially startups, to decrease the need for physical space, power usage, IT resources and more. As a result, there is a lower need for installation, maintenance, upgrades and costs for support and hardware. For SMBs, this is a valuable way of saving resources so they can concentrate on online growth.

Cloud-based resources are measured at granular level, which means that users only pay for the workloads and resources that they use. You also don’t need to buy software anymore or pay for someone or a team to update or install the software, manage email or file servers or run backups.

The benefit of cloud computing is that all of the applications and services are taken over by the cloud vendor, instead of you having to be responsible for any of it.

4. Improved collaboration

Productivity is increased by cloud computing due to its accessibility. Since everyone who needs access to files and data can get them wherever they are, there is less need for employees to be in the same room. This is especially relevant for workers or employees who need to travel a lot.

Teams in different locations all over the globe can readily collaborate on projects without needing to actually meet. Easy sharing and real time updates on files are facilitated, and more things will get done with web conferencing for meetings.

Cloud computing lets small businesses grow quickly online. It’s faster, easier and more convenient to sign up for a cloud-based app than to purchase a server, run it, and install software on it. Expansion is cheaper as there is no need to invest in hardware and software for the startup.

Cloud-based applications can also be accessed on common web browsers at any time. This means that users across the company can adopt to the applications without the need for intensive training. This is especially valuable for businesses with employees in different locations.

5. Enhanced security with instant updates

There is increased security for companies as software is automatically updated, bugs are fixed and content is remotely stored.

Those who have doubts on what the cloud has to offer are concerned about the safety of data outside the company’s internal firewall. The truth is, due to the robust security standards established by ISO, safety is increased when cloud solutions are used. Moreover, cloud providers are strictly required to follow the rules.

As a result, risks are reduced when it comes to loss of laptops containing confidential information as well as the threats of hackers. You can also remotely wipe sensitive data from lost laptops and gadgets so nobody else can access them.

When it comes to ensuring security with the cloud service you choose, you need to know first where your data is stored. Firewalls, detection and prevention tools as well as data encryption can help prevent intruders from getting at your information. However, you still need to know where your data goes when you stop with the service or in cases where the cloud provider closes down. Dedicated hardware is what cloud computing providers need to pass the highest security guidelines.

Data backup is recommended to make sure that you can increase your control over your data. Ensure that the data centre you’re using takes security seriously. Find out what security measures are in place in the server and data centre where your data is stored.

Managed services are also a valuable option in making your data and apps stronger. This includes managed antivirus, firewalls and detection tools. High quality cloud providers offer these to allow for better security.

On top of it all, updates, including on security, are automated.

Cloud service providers can regularly update offers, giving customers the most up to date technology possible. This can include software, servers and computer processing power. Customers can avoid wasting their time maintaining systems and updating them once new features roll out. Suppliers take care of those themselves, out of sight.

As a result, businesses can focus on growing their business while enjoying the best that the latest technology has to offer.

To round up, the top benefits you get from cloud computing include:

– Saving time resources with services that you can enjoy on-demand

– Flexibility and mobility of access

– More affordable services with pay per use

– Better collaboration within teams, especially for overseas or traveling employees

– Heightened security measures in place plus automated updates

With the rise of the cloud computing trend, small and medium businesses can now create websites and power up online influence like never before. With many benefits to enjoy, moving to the cloud is an unmissable opportunity for companies.

Source by Mark Evans

Perfume – A Money Making Business

Perfume has been around for ages; for longer than we can even fathom. It has become so ingrained in a woman’s essence that most women won’t leave home without it. Among many perfumes to choose from, Bvlgari perfume has made great strides in the world of scents; a world that everyone wants a piece of.

The perfume industry is at its peak for women’s cosmetics. Almost every department store in the world sells it, as well as many stores and private owned businesses. That is because of their money making capabilities and the attraction that it brings to women.

Every business that is anything wants a piece of some sort of perfume stock. That is because the liquid magic that casts spells on the world has a way with women and men everywhere; and the money is not so bad either. Perhaps perfume is so ingenious because of the way it makes people feel. It has the ability to make a woman feel like she is dressed up and fancy with just a quick spray from a bottle.

Not only does every store in the world want to sell this much in demand product; but every brand name out there wants to start there own. Just like Bvlgari started out in jewelry and other fine products; so too it was not long in coming before Bvlgari perfume was in the making. Everybody who is somebody, and even those who are not, want to make their own perfume because of being such a wanted and needed product.

There are never enough smells and never enough names. Movie stars, as well as any Joe on the street will make their own line. The way it sells is by appearing as unique and exotic, and having that perfect scent. There is never enough perfumes on the market, which is why every day you will hear of a new line.

When starting out, all it takes is one person to wear it and question what it is for it to take off. A lot of times this is how small companies make it big. Perfume has a way of attracting the person wearing it and the person surrounding them.

Perhaps it is a good business to start; making your own perfume. It can really make it with the right tools. If you have the right name, a catchy slogan, and good products; that is a starting point. No matter that you are not a popular brand name; everyone starts out small.

You may not become the next Bvlgari perfume, but if it is such a money making business due to its very high demand, you may at as well give it a shot. Nobody said it is a sure win, but it certainly does not hurt to try. If you attract the right crowd, you may just have your in. After all, it may only take one person (or one nose) to set the trend and bring in the hordes once they smell something they like; so make it worth their while, and make it good.

Source by Tamar Rosen