Relationship Advice … For Your Small Business

Wednesday, February 10 at 07:30 AM
Category: Business Banking

Relationships are the most important part of building a business.
I would argue that relationships are even more important than revenue because strong relationships and strong performance go hand in hand.

Now before I start preaching on relationships in business, I will insert a disclaimer: I'm not perfect! I've had my share of relationships that have gone sour, and to say I've learned a lot along the way would be a huge understatement.

Contrary to what many people believe (even the many acquaintances I know), I can be very guarded in my relationships, and that guard is a huge giant now in my business relationships. It wasn't always this way. There was a point where I would literally spend entire days just helping other people, saying "yes" to every request that came across my desk, and fearing what people would think of me if I couldn't fulfill a request.

Now I know that keeping my guard up and protecting my energy allows me to give the best of myself in the relationships I have with this community and my clients. When I drain my energy doing things I really don't want to do, for people I really don't want to do things for, I deplete myself from the relationships in my life that matter the most. Other than my family and close friends, the most meaningful relationships I'm always working on building are those with my clients, employees, and community.

You + Clients
The way you manage your client relationships* could make you very successful, or make you broke. The latter is what almost happened to me in my early stages of business.
 
I gave so much of myself to my clients, and I failed to set boundaries on my time and the scope of the projects I would work on. The client always got a lot more than we had contractually agreed to, usually without appreciating the extras, and making those exceptions soon led to unrealistic expectations. There were a few people I worked with that made me feel bitter, and I never ever want to feel bitterness like that again in my business.

My top tip for client relationships: Train your clients.
That's right, train your clients.* This is meant in the most loving way so that everyone is on the same page regarding expectations of the work you're doing together and the relationship right from the beginning. After those expectations are set, my heart is wide open and I'm all in.

You + Your Community
She Takes on the World Inc. is a social enterprise. I want to be clear: social enterprise does not necessarily mean non-profit, even though that's what many people assume. We're a for-profit company focused on sustainable and scalable revenue that maximizes our profit so that we can use portions of that profit to impact the three philanthropic pillars we focus on: entrepreneurship, education, and empowerment.

For example, with the success of The Conquer Club and The Concord,* my intensive mastermind, we were able to help build The Conquer Academy in Tanzania this summer. The opening of this school was one of the happiest days of my life, and I can't wait to visit next year. Projects like this are our "why" and the reason we work so hard to continue growing this company.

My top tip for community relations: Find a way to play your part, and use your business to give back in a way that feels in alignment with your personal and business values.

One of the best pieces of relationship advice I've received came from being a student of A Course in Miracles. The course talks about how no relationship is an accident, and each gives us a series of lessons we are meant to learn whether it be a relationship in our personal lives or our businesses. Each relationship is one giant mirror, so look carefully at the reflection you're seeing.

This blog entry was sponsored by Visa Business and the blogger received compensation for his/her time from Visa for sharing their views in this post. The views expressed here are solely the blogger's, not Visa's. 08/28/2014 from She Takes on the World. Blog was edited due to length.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: Arvest Biz, Business Banking
 

Riddle Promoted to Branch Manager in Lead Hill, Ark.

Wednesday, February 10 at 05:05 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

We're pleased to have Brenda Riddle grow her career with Arvest with her recent promotion to branch manager in Lead Hill, Ark.

YELLVILLE, Ark. - Arvest Bank announced today that Brenda Riddle has been promoted to branch manager at the Lead Hill location. Riddle began her career with Arvest in 2007 as a teller in Yellville and was promoted to assistant branch manager for the Lead Hill branch in 2012. She succeeds Phyllis Nay who retired in December of 2015.

“Brenda is a great asset to our company, and certainly our customers in the Lead Hill community,” said Gail Mainord, sales manager for Arvest Bank in North Central Arkansas. “She has a wealth of knowledge in banking and places great customer service as her priority.  We look forward to her leadership in Lead Hill, for our customers and our Arvest team there.” Riddle is a graduate of Yellville Summit High School.  

For more information on Arvest Bank, visit www.arvest.com

Tags: Arkansas, Associates, North Central Arkansas, Press Release
 

Wilkins Promoted in Springfield, Mo.

Tuesday, February 09 at 05:50 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

We're excited to see Mitch Wilkins grow his career with Arvest with his recent promotion to Mortgage Lender in Springfield, Mo.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Arvest Bank in Springfield is pleased to announce that Mitch Wilkins has accepted a promotion to Mortgage Lender and will move to the Arvest Bank at the intersection of National Avenue and Chestnut Expressway.

Wilkins has worked for Arvest Bank for more than four years, working his way from financial services representative to personal banker and, lastly, mortgage lender in July 2015.   

“We are proud of the work Mitch has been doing for Arvest Bank and for the advances he has been able to make,” said Brad Crain, president and chief executive officer for Arvest Bank, Springfield. “He has proven himself a diligent and trustworthy member of the Arvest Team and he truly demonstrates our commitment to top-level customer service each and every day.” 

A native of Festus, Mo., Wilkins graduated from Festus High School in 2007 and earned a Bachelor of Science in economics from Missouri State University in 2011.

He is an active member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks and the Springfield Rotaract.

Tags: Associates, Missouri, Press Release, Springfield
 

Friday Financial Forum Feb. 12 in Bartlesville, Okla.

Tuesday, February 09 at 05:10 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

Join us Friday, Feb. 12 at 9:45 a.m. for our Friday Financial Forum. We will meet at the Friday Forum Room at Arvest's East Side Branch, located at 4225 S.E. Adams Rd. in Bartlesville, Okla.*

This week, we have a pre-forum performance by the Salty Senior Acting Troupe, directed by Joe Sears. The acting troupe will open the Valentine Dinner Theatre show on Feb. 14 in Dewey’s Heritage Theatre.

Matthew Watson, Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce, will give an update on chamber investment and involvement in the community.

Also joining us will be Elizabeth Montgomery, presenting soloist for the Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming concert on Feb. 13. Elizabeth is a recording artist/writer, originally from Vinita, Okla. Her latest orchestra debuts include the Denver Philharmonic Christmas Concert and the Tulsa Praise Orchestra at the Coleman Theatre.  

What you can expect at the event:

  • Information: Community leaders share topical, local and state information (Sen. John Ford, Rep. Earl Sears & Rep. Travis Dunlap)
  • News: "The Scoop" – all about business and community happenings in Bartlesville (Billie Roane, Arvest Bank)
  • Stock Report & Economic Update: Josh Randolph**, Arvest Wealth Management
  • Hilarious Anecdotes: Jim Bohnsack, Arvest Bank

Each week is different with a few surprises! Invite a friend and come enjoy delicious homemade cookies and hear about what’s going on in the Bartlesville area! 

If you have any questions or would like to add someone to the email invitation list, please contact Billie Roane at (918) 337-4358. We look forward to seeing you there!

**Josh Randolph - Oklahoma Insurance License #122041

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.
 

Tags: Bartlesville, Community Support, Oklahoma
 

10 Valentine's Day Ideas That Won't Break the Bank … or the Romance

Monday, February 08 at 10:15 AM
Category: Personal Finance

"Can't Buy Me Love" was a great song by Lennon and McCartney and frankly, a pretty good philosophy for Valentine's Day in general.

There really are ways to enjoy a unique and memorable Feb. 14 without overspending. Here are 10 ideas to warm their heart and spare your wallet:
 
  1. Begin at the beginning. Maybe your relationship began at work, a party or a bus stop. Returning to that place and re-staging that moment using little props can re-capture memories.
  2. Try a little due diligence. Ask your significant other or friend about his or her best Valentine's Day ever. Listen for clues about gifts, activities or places you might try. Don't wait until 48 hours before the holiday; you can always collect creative Valentine's Day ideas 365 days a year.
  3. Stay near the stove. A fabulous dinner almost always costs less at home. Plus, it's a more intimate setting and shows dedication and thought.
  4. Deliver kindness, not presents. Instead of wrapped gifts, what about chores or crafts? Focus on a gift based on something you know how to do rather than something you could just buy.
  5. If it's a night out, do your homework. Valentine's Day can be one of the most crowded and expensive nights to go out. If you have a restaurant or event in mind, research everything you can about the food, ambiance and specials at various times of day – particularly during early, fixed-price periods and slower days of the week.
  6. Grab those coupons, free passes and points. Mileage, restaurants and online discount clubs can offer a range of options. Points can be used for discounts or free nights out on Valentine's Day or immediate dates. Decide which offers are the best deals and leverage them the best you can.
  7. Consider substitutions and alternatives. Why have that glass of champagne or celebratory cocktail at the restaurant if there's a happy hour nearby where you can save a little money? Consider mixing and matching venues on a night out to save money.
  8. Declare a staycation. Visit museums on half-price days or out-of-the-way eateries you always thought about trying. Even local hotels might be a better deal than traveling a greater distance.
  9. You don't have to run for the roses. A dozen roses are a classic gift. But there are potentially cheaper and equally beautiful flower alternatives. If your loved one has a green thumb, consider potted plants or seeds they can sow later. Remember, spring is right around the corner.
  10. If you must bling, bling responsibly. If this Valentine's Day involves a wedding engagement or another grand gesture of romance, plan well in advance so you can get advice on what you're buying and ensure it's in line with your loved one's taste. Maybe a relative with a beautiful ring might offer it or sell it at a friendly price.
Bottom line: Valentine's Day is about the people, not the bill. A little time and creativity can help you devise a memorable day without digging too far into savings.
 
Written by Nathaniel Sillin courtesy of Arvest Money Skills.

Tags: Budgeting

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