An accurate job quote protects your interests while still being fair to the client. This makes creating job quotes one of the biggest challenges small businesses face. If you quote too low, your business pays for its work and your profit margins will suffer. If you go too high, the client may look for the services elsewhere. Continue reading
Christmas is always a special time of year for my family, but probably not for the reasons you would expect. Sure, we get together and celebrate with all our usual traditions. However, the holidays are also a time to reflect on and share our blessings with others. So, every year my family chooses a charitable cause that holds special meaning for us and finds some way to support them. It is a good reminder of what the Christmas spirit is all about as well as the importance of giving back to the community. The birth of crowdfunding sites has opened up new possibilities and ways to help. If you are looking for ways you can contribute, here’s how to set up crowdfunding for charity.
What is Crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding is a simple concept that has helped people raise millions of dollars for different causes. Instead of trying to get a single large donation, it takes a more grassroots approach of asking for smaller donations from a large group of people.
The platforms provide a secure online portal where you can make monetary contributions. Several charities, social justice causes, startups, and individuals seeking assistance through hardships utilize crowdfunding to raise money. If you are looking for a way to give back, you can donate to existing non-profits or charitable organizations that support national and international relief efforts. Or, you can find an individual cause to directly help people you know.
How Do You Set Up Crowdfunding for Charity?
Although it is easy to fill out the required fields and launch your crowdfunding cause, it takes more to lead a successful campaign. You must implement a good strategy and get ready to put in a good amount of work to see results. You can’t just set it and forget it, then expect the donations to come rolling in.
When you take the role of organizer, you will need to set the goals for the crowdfunding campaign, share important details of the cause you are raising money for, and find a way to reach the maximum amount of people possible. One of the easiest methods of gaining support is to post links, pictures, and updates through your social media. The more platforms you use, the more people you can reach.
However, one thing you must remember is to pay attention to the fine print. There are rules and fees associated with each platform. And, they all operate differently. Some will charge a small percentage to use their platform and also regulate how and when the funds are disbursed. Make sure to read them carefully so they aren’t any surprises later on.
What Are the Best Crowdfunding Platforms to Use for Charity?
So, the big question is how do you choose which site is best when you are crowdfunding for charity? There are dozens of platforms to choose from, and more popping up every day. However, every crowdfunding site is not created equal.
The top crowdfunding sites provide easy setup and maintenance, but they will charge you for it. Platforms like Indiegogo and Kickstarter are among the largest and most popular because they are user-friendly. In only a few minutes, you can have it completed and ready to start spreading the word. And, organizers can quickly access the funds when they are ready to use them. But, they require a 5% fee to use their services. While GoFundMe has no platform fee, it charges transaction fees for debit and credit cards.
Sites like Mightycause are much better suited for nonprofits and charitable causes. They have some of the lowest fees, charging only 1.2% for processing fees. And although they don’t require you to meet specific goals, they will give you access to free tools to help achieve them.
The Best Crowdfunding Platform for Our Christmas Cause
This year, my family decided to think a little bigger. We are rallying support for a group of people who are often overlooked. Although society considers them adults, 20% of children who “age out” of foster care become instantly homeless. As they formally enter adulthood, they lose access to every form of support they had as minors.
To put it lightly, these kids are often unprepared and ill-equipped to take care of themselves as adults. They face greater obstacles and have a higher risk of dropping out, unemployment, teen pregnancy, abuse, and imprisonment. So, youth centers, such as the Flite Center, provide support to local teens as they transition into adulthood. In addition to providing basic living necessities, they also offer career counseling, resource navigation, and assistance to find housing and education.
Unfortunately, these centers are severely underfunded and are always in need of support. Therefore, my friend, her community, and now all our social media contacts are banding together to put together gift baskets with Christmas stockings stuffed full of toiletries, gift cards, warm clothing, and other necessities to make their lives a little easier. To help us with this task, we chose SignUpGenius.
The Crowdfunding Platform
Although any one of the crowdfunding platforms can help you achieve your goals, it is important to find the one the best suits your needs. The primary benefit of this crowdfunding platform for charity is that it allows you to itemize your list and assign slots for volunteers to sign up. It gives more flexibility to those who are contributing and makes it easier for the organizer to meet the donation goals.
Instead of just sending money, the platform’s design allows you to choose what you want to contribute. After creating a list of items to include, we provided the link to purchase them in bulk. There are also options to purchase gift cards or pay for an entire basket. For those who find it difficult to make monetary contributions, there is also a request for handwritten Christmas cards that can be included with the baskets.
However, SignUpGenius has another huge advantage: the cost. While they do charge a set monthly fee, they will not require a percentage of the money you raise. The lowest package starts at $8.99 a month, but they do offer a free trial for their premium plans.
In addition to the financial savings, their site will also help us save a ton of time and energy in preparation. Now, we can focus our efforts on community outreach and informing everyone of how they can help. This Christmas, we want people to understand that family isn’t always the people that you are related to. Everyone in your community is part of your family. And as a community, we can support each other and make it even stronger.
Without question, social media has changed how humans communicate. While we now have access to a global network of people and information, constant communication also subjects us to a constant bombardment of advertisements, notifications, and promotional offers as well. For these reasons and more, many people announce that they are taking social media cleanses to detox from its negative side effects. Even if you don’t feel the need to declare it to the world, taking a break from social media for even 24 hours could be good for you. In addition to its mental health benefits, people are discovering that there are many financial benefits of deleting your social media apps as well.
What Are Some of the Financial Benefits of Deleting Social Media Apps?
1. It Removes the Temptation to Spend.
When I began clearing my home screen of social media apps, I didn’t realize how it would affect my spending habits. With so many embedded advertisements, I was frequently diverted to sites I never intended to visit. And, although I hate to admit it, also spend money I never intended to part with. My increased monthly savings was the most unexpected financial benefit of deleting my social media apps.
Deleting these and other mobile shopping apps I frequently use took away the temptation to spend. It’s as simple as the press of the button to have things delivered to your front door. When I saw the apps every time I opened my phone, it was harder to resist impulse buying.
Once I became aware of this bad habit, I also realized I was making unnecessary in-game purchases with some of my mobile gaming apps as well. Removing all of these has saved me a significant amount of money each month.
2. You Have Less Exposure to Targeted Advertising.
Speaking of embedded advertisements, social media apps are littered with them. The banner and pop-up ads are hard to ignore. And, if you spend hours each day scrolling, they become ingrained into your subconscious when you see them over and over again. This marketing strategy has proven so successful that 76% of people say they have bought something they saw in a social media post. Furthermore, many of the respondents said they didn’t even intend to buy anything before they made the purchase.
It has become even more effective since social media uses your search history to target items you have shown an interest in. If you have looked it up multiple times, they will continue to show you more ads. The more you see something, the more likely it becomes that you will buy it. So, reducing your exposure to marketing and advertisements can help you avoid spending money. This is good news for your wallet and your monthly budget.
3. It Makes You More Productive at Work.
Facts are facts. Most of us spend hours every day scrolling through social media. If you don’t believe me, check your screen time tracker. Not only will it show you have much time you spend on your phone every day, but it will also tell you which ones are your biggest time-suckers.
If you are constantly getting notifications or checking your phone at work, it can become a huge distraction. And, it could be affecting your overall job performance. By deleting the apps from your phone, you can greatly improve your productivity. Who knows…maybe if you aren’t so distracted, you’ll finally feel motivated to go after a raise or a promotion.
4. The Extra Time Can Help You Increase Your Income.
I can’t speak for others, but I was shocked to see that I was spending upwards of 4-5 hours every day on social media. Although I always complained that I never had enough hours in the day, now I had evidence why. The time we spend looking at the latest posts could be put towards more productive pursuits.
Instead of wasting this time on social media, I wanted to use it to improve my financial situation. I started by taking advantage of new opportunities and became more serious about investing. As I looked at ways to earn passive income, I finally found the courage to start my own business. Although this is how I chose to use my reclaimed time, you could use it to learn a new skill or earn a specialized degree that will increase your income.
5. It Becomes Easier to Focus on Your Goals.
Possibly the most impactful financial benefit of deleting social media apps was that it become easier to focus on my goals. Sure, there were times I felt I was missing out as my friends posted updates of their vacations and new purchases. However, reducing my exposure to other people’s irresponsible spending habits also reduced comparisons and envy.
Not having those incessant reminders allows you to reset your priorities and focus on what and who is most important. For me, removing the temptations to use social media made it is easier to achieve my financial goals.
Don’t Forget About the Health Benefits of Deleting Your Social Media Apps Either!
In addition to all the financial benefits, we can’t forget to mention the mental health benefits as well. Once I deleted the worst offenders from my phone, my sleeping habits immediately improved. I felt more energized when I woke up and less drained at the end of the day.
Psychologists have also noted that it can reduce your anxiety levels. By removing the obligation you feel to stay in constant communication, you eliminate the stress it creates. This allows you to relax and truly live in the moment. And, when we spend less time looking at our phones, we are able to focus on other, more personal modes of communication.
Although it may not be necessary to do a social media detox, taking a step back from our daily routines can give you a new perspective and appreciation. Going forward, I know that I can take a step back and then ease back into whenever I feel the need. However, once you begin noticing the financial benefits of deleting your social media apps, you may decide to take a permanent hiatus.
Time or Money: Which is more valuable? This has been a hotly debated topic throughout human history, yet the question still remains. Although, it seems pretty clear that the answer should be time over money. I would even argue that time is the most valuable resource. If you are money-poor but time rich, you may feel otherwise. However, people find many reasons why time is more valuable than money.
7 Reasons to Choose Time Over Money
1. You can’t buy more time.
You can use the time to make money, but money can’t buy you more time. It is impossible to create additional hours in the day, no matter who you are. Time is the great equalizer. Everyone receives 24 hours in a day, no more, no less.
However, the difference lies in how you spend it. Someone who accomplished a great deal in their lifetime likely spent it learning and mastering new skills. One thing is for certain, though. Success requires time and hard work in order to achieve your ambitions. These things simply cannot be bought.
2. In the end, people ask for more time, not money.
When people enter their final days, you rarely hear them ask for more money. Most wish they had more time with the ones they love or doing things they never got to do. While money can greatly improve your quality of life, it cannot extend it.
Many people even keep a ‘bucket list’ of things they want to do before they die. The entire concept builds upon the idea that you have a limited time to complete them. If you are among this group, you already understand why sometimes you must choose time over money. You cannot put a price on memories and time spent with loved ones.
3. You need time to spend money.
You could have all the money in the world, but you would still need time if you wanted to spend it. While some may want to accrue money just for the sake of having it, most would prefer to splurge a little. The world’s elite has fortunes to support lavish lifestyles to last a hundred lifetimes over. However, it would still require more time than you think to spend $1 billion.
Money holds no value to you after you are gone. Certainly, it can benefit those you leave behind, but it has no use to you personally. Since you can’t take money with you when you die, it further proves that time is more valuable than money.
4. There is more potential with a day off than with a day’s pay.
The hours you spend at work are rigidly defined in financial terms. Your time has a set value when you are on the clock. Although, how you spend your free time is completely up to you. And what you do with that time is only limited by your own desires. Greater things have been achieved in a single day than with what you would take home after an eight-hour shift.
Furthermore, who you spend your time with is equally valuable. Being present and enjoying the company of friends and family is priceless. On the other hand, it is just as vital to ensure that you take time for yourself. Your mental health can also greatly benefit from some time alone and self-care. However, time is the essential factor.
5. Only time can heal certain wounds.
Just as time is the great equalizer, it is also the great healer. Some hurts run deeper than any scan can read. Modern medicine and technology are ineffective to treat these wounds. Even time cannot completely erase the scars. However, time does help the pain fade from memory.
Time also grants us the gift of perspective. It also grants us more objectivity as time passes. We can look back through new eyes to analyze and reflect. This distance can make it easier to identify our strengths and weaknesses, allowing us to grow as people. These kinds of lessons can only be gained through life experience.
6. You can’t regain lost time.
Losing money is a terrible thing. However, given enough time and wise financial planning, you can earn it back. Once time slips past you, there is no way to regain lost moments. No amount of money can recreate missed holidays, birthdays, and other important milestones. When you view time from this perspective, time becomes an invaluable resource.
Time is certainly not a resource I want to waste either. This point should also make you evaluate how you spend your time. Wasting time in front of a TV or with toxic people may not be the best use of it. Consider what you really want from life and who you want to spend it with. After re-evaluating, you may have a new set of priorities.
7. Choosing time over money promotes greater long-term happiness.
A recent study investigated the correlation between time and happiness. Specifically in relation to the survey question in which 80 percent of working adults wish they had more time with their families. Many participants responded that they constantly felt rushed due to the demands of their professional and personal lives. The term “time famine” describes the overwhelming feeling of these pressures.
Those who said they felt time scarcity were less happy and also more prone to depression and anxiety. Focusing on time over money can relieve this stress and promote greater long-term happiness. The key is time management. While these obligations will always be there, finding ways to save time can help us spend more of it with those we love.
Prioritizing Time Over Money
These are just seven reasons why time is more valuable than money. In truth, you likely already have more money than the time remaining. Perhaps you will feel the same once you realize that when the sands of time slip through your fingers, it’s gone. It may have you reprioritizing so you can maximize the sand still left in your own hourglass.
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Getting laid off or dismissed from service is one of the worst nightmares of every working adult. While you may diligently perform your functions, circumstances outside of your control may lead to you losing your job. It could be for financial reasons, because of a manager out to get you, or a global pandemic. While this is not the general rule, undoubtedly, some employers just think that their employees are dispensable members of a totally replaceable workforce. More so, there are cases where employees get injured and are fired when they return to work. That got them asking, “Can I be laid off while on workers compensation”
This is why employees should always be vigilant in protecting their rights. Though the laws are generally in favor of the workforce, it’s always better to protect your own interests and know your local laws. Aside from that, it’s also essential for employees to learn how to save and invest. Cliche as it may sound but it’s true that you have to save for the rainy days. When you get wrongfully terminated, you can fight your case and win in court, however, that may take time. You need to survive and pay your bills while fighting your legal battle.
Save as much as you can
Whether you’re fully-employed, in danger of getting terminated or are thinking of resigning, you need to save money that would last you two to three months of being unemployed. This means that you need to have enough money to pay for your bills and leave comfortably for two to three months. This will give you a reasonable time to fight your cause and look for another job.
Saving up for this moment in your life should start the moment you took the job. If you save even a little of your monthly income, over time, you’ll see that you’ll have enough money to cover for emergency expenses. You can also invest what you save monthly to grow it passively.
Check your benefits and claim it
If you’ve been wrongfully terminated, the right to do is to fight for your rights. You can ask the help of a labor lawyer to establish your causes of action. However, if the company implemented a legal lay-off, then, the soundest option there is to accept the decision and move on by looking for better job opportunities. Before you leave, check what benefits you can claim.
If you’re not fully aware of all your benefits, you can speak with your company Human Resources Department (HRD) and talk about the following:
- Ask for your severance pay, along with your eligibility for unemployment insurance, pension benefits, sick and overtime pay, and accrued vacation. If you didn’t lose your job because of your fault and you satisfy all the eligibility requirements, then there’s no reason why you can’t receive unemployment compensation.
- Since severance packages are negotiable in most cases, take this chance to ask for more than the company’s standard offer.
- Request your HRD for information on how you can continue with your life and health insurance benefits.
- Check for options wherein you can handle your own 401(k) pension plan.
- Inquire about any outplacement resources and request for a reference letter.
Plan your job search
To get back on your feet, you need to find another job immediately. But before that, check if you can claim unemployment benefits from your state. This will help augment your savings to pay for your monthly expenses. The benefit can also help get you ready for another chapter of your life.
If you can’t find a full-time job immediately, you can consider freelancing, part-time gigs, or a temporary position in the meantime. The money you’ll get from these gigs can help you survive until you land another full-time and better-paying job. If you’re gutsy, you can even start your own startup business. There are companies that grant loans for those who want to start a business.
Getting fired is not something an employee would wish for, however, if it’s inevitable, you must know that it’s not the end of the world. With a little bit of sacrifice, a conscious effort to get employed, and a decent amount of savings, you can get through the unemployment phase unscathed.
A social CRM strategy means the integration of social networks in the management of client relationships. A proper social CRM strategy should improve customer relationships and should be more oriented towards prioritizing the review of essential business facets, like marketing, sales, customer experience, service support, and innovation, among others. A social CRM strategy’s primary goal is using a top CRM software in monitoring, mapping, and measuring the return on investment (ROI). Continue reading
It is extremely hard to escape technology, nowadays. Anyone who lives in a modernized society will have technology all around them. Although some developing countries lack many advances that are awarded to developed ones, it won’t be long until they close this technological gap. Continue reading
“Pay yourself first”
It is a phrase many of us have heard when it comes to managing our money and investing. I often post on Quora and see people ask, “What should I invest in?” or “What does it mean to invest in myself?” These are great questions, as many young people especially do not have the right answer.
Ways you can pay yourself first…
Contribute to an employer 401k and get the full company match. This has a two-fold purpose. Firstly, you are never seeing the money that is taken out so you will not miss it. Secondly, your employer match is FREE money and the easiest way to boost your return.
Establish a Roth IRA. Most individuals are eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA. If you are unsure, go to Roth IRA and see if you meet the criteria. Even a small amount of $100 a month automatically withdrawn from your checking account is a great way to add an additional retirement vehicle for the future.
Read Books. Lately I have been ordering books on Kindle like a mad man. Many of the books I read are financial related and leverage others’ experiences. The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J. Stanley is one I highly recommend. Austin Netzley’s Make Money, Live Wealthy is another great book that offers wonderful insight into his personal journey of wealth creation. Austin does a great job of connecting with successful entrepreneurs and innovators throughout his book and illustrates their journey to success.
Your Health. Investing in yourself isn’t just about money; it is also about being able to enjoy the life you live so that one day you can reap the rewards of all the hard work you have put in. Start exercising if you don’t already. They key is starting small. Do the elliptical for 15 minutes 3 days a week. Then bump it up to four. Replace a candy bar with a piece of fruit. You get the picture. Investing in your health should be the first one listed in this post, but like many of us it often times is the last thing we think about.
There are many other ways that you can pay yourself first. Vacations, nice meals out, etc. When it comes to your finances and personal development, YOU are in control. Don’t just talk about these things, put them into action and set yourself up for greater success.
Budget Smart, Invest Wise