How To Make Your Home Look And Feel Airy

Your home’s appearance and feel will have a direct effect on how you feel when you walk in its doors. You don’t want guests to be in a dimly lit space. It will take some planning and some habits to transform your home into a bright, airy space.

Make sure to get lots of natural sunlight

A home can benefit from natural light. Check out your window treatments. Blinds and curtains are the best options to let light flood in. Consider other options instead of sticking with the white standard blinds. Bamboo blinds or wooden blinds look amazing. Hang curtains that are resistant to the elements. Hang heavy curtains if it is winter. The curtains can also be used to trap cold air in the home. For summer, light curtains can be added to your home with sheer, soft curtains.


To declutter your home, you should first do a deep clean. After you have decluttered your home, you can create systems that will help you keep it clean. A trash can should be kept near the filing system. You don’t want mail to pile up on your kitchen counter so you need to set up a filing system. You can either have a garage sale or donate items to a local thrift shop.

Stick to a color scheme

You will need to choose lighter colors if you want a bright, airy space. You can still have darker colors to balance the room out, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that you should. You can create a brighter base by painting your walls a lighter color, such as light blue, cream, or pale yellow. You can choose to have tan or caramel-colored couches instead of chocolate brown. You can incorporate patterns with flower bedding, fun pillow or stunning area rug to create depth and texture. Area rug is a place that will give your home or you workplace a descent look and you can use custom logo rugs for your entry area.

Cleanse the air

You’re in trouble if your home smells bad and looks great. It can be difficult to maintain clean air. Carpet floors should be kept clean and vacuumed regularly to avoid allergen accumulation. To create beautiful aromas in your room, you can use essential oil diffusers. Aromatherapy can also be enjoyed in this way. Every day, open the windows for a few seconds. This will allow air to circulate. Consider buying an indoor plant. Indoor plants can be used as natural air purifiers.

Enhance your furniture

If you want to make your home appear larger, heavy furniture won’t be a good choice. There are many options available to you. To give your furniture more space, you can make new legs for couches and dressers by lifting them off of the ground. You can replace clunky legs on your coffee table and dining table with hairpin legs. They will be able to support the weight of your furniture, without adding weight to the room.

Decorate with plants

Spring is the season of new life. To bring some spring to your home, you will need to brighten it up. How better to bring life into your home than by actually bringing in living things? Adding plants to your home adds life and vibrancy. Simple decorations such as an orchid placed on the dining room table or a small tree in a corner can make a space feel lively and energetic.

4 New Year’s Resolutions To Boost Your Trucking Business

As an owner operator you know how important it is to constantly keep growing your business. The only way to do this is to continue to get your name out there and expand your customer base. Without constant expansion your business is destined to start losing money as existing customers move, go out of business or try other trucking companies.

There are at least four easy to implement strategies that will help to continue to grow your trucking business that are low cost, very effective and highly visible. By using all four of these ideas you will increase your business profile in your community which will result in the best possible probability of bringing in new customers.

Strategy 1: Advertise

Advertising is critical, and how you choose to spend your time and money in advertising is even more important. If you don’t know the type of business you want to attract to your company then any advertising you are doing is sort of like shooting in the dark and hoping that your advertising will find its target.

You need to start by seriously thinking about the type of customer you want. This will then lead you to the type of advertising that is most effective and most likely to be seen by your new potential customers.

For example, if you are a livestock hauler you probably will find the best option for finding new customers is advertising at the cattle auction sales barn, farming and ranching publications and at agribusinesses and stock shows. Advertising in the local city paper is not likely to be cost effective and much less likely to catch your potential customer’s attention than advertising in an area that farmers and ranchers will access.

Strategy 2: Hire Professionals To Do What You Can’t

Sometimes owner operators try to do everything on their own. They may take on the bookkeeping, website management, advertising and marketing, invoicing, trucking and getting new business roles. This typically leads to the problem of just spreading yourself too thin and not really having the time or ability to be on top of the entire business.

A better option is to use freelance professionals that you can pay by the job or by the hour. With this option you get the benefit of having a certified accountant or bookkeeper, a website designer or social media expert, or even an assistant to handle all of the day to day tasks. By using a freelance professional you don’t have to hire someone full time, often they can work from a remote location so you don’t need to have an office or building, plus you can control the budget. You also won’t have to provide insurance and other types of coverage since they are not full or even part time employees, they are contract employees.

Strategy 3: Take A Business Course

If you are running a trucking business then you need to have a good understanding of how to create a sustainable business model for your company. Taking a business course is a must to get that theoretical knowledge so you can practically and strategically grow your business. A business course can be taken at a local community college, online or through reading a good book on the subject.

Taking a business course or learning more about business management will pay off in ways you have never imagined. You will learn more about cost effective business practices, tax breaks you may not have considered and even about marketing and sales opportunities that may not have been on the radar.

Strategy 4: Network With The Competition

For some truckers that own their own company the idea of networking and cooperating with other owner operators may sound counterintuitive. After all you many think it is best to be able to corner the market and develop your own unique niche and customer base. While this is somewhat true, having a good relationship with other owner operators and small or larger trucking companies in your area can also add to the calls that you get from new customers.

Often people call large trucking companies with small jobs, jobs that the larger companies are happy to pass off to someone else. In turn your small business may get a call about a large job that you can’t do on your own. Having the ability to provide a reference to the potential customer leaves a good imagine of your business in the customers mind; but there is another option to consider as well. While you may not be able to do the job on your own, networking and subcontracting with other owner operators in your area may open the door for you to take on those big jobs with confidence that you can supply the trucks and truckers required.

Another reason to network with other owner operators, especially if you are specializing in one type of freight or trucking service, is that they will refer customers to you if you do the same back for their specialization. The only way that you become aware of this is by having at information readily available.

Making it a habit to consciously engage in the four strategies listed above will help you to maximize your ability to grow your business. Of course top customer service is still essential, but that should be an ongoing practice with each and every load you haul.

7 Essentials of Surveillance

As technology is evolving, video surveillance cameras are becoming more affordable and cost-effective. Be it business or home, people are opting for modern and latest means of surveillance. These modes not only prevent thefts & losses, but also help in monitoring and tracking activities. From observing the customers in a retail outlet to capturing the license plate numbers of the vehicles, they do everything! But, is there anything that you may need to know before you indulge in what is called “surveillance”? Yes! There are seven important points that one must know before investing into this realm.

Here are the ‘Seven essentials of surveillance’:

1) When you are unable to hold the reins, recompense

In surveillance, there are certain things which are past our control and further hinder with the working of these systems, for instance, back light, quivering of camera, changes in light level and low light conditions. Though you can’t control them, but you can compensate their effects by using the camera’s digital image processing feature. Thus, while choosing your surveillance solution, it is very important to hand-pick the right IP camera. The apt IP camera is the one, which is proficient enough to recoup the above mentioned issues.

2) Good to Consult and Surf

Before the final purchase, make sure to do enough market research regarding what you are investing your money into. Most of the consumers are very firm about the price range when they move out to buy a system. What they try to do is save without thinking of what their real needs are. If there is a scope, then it is always good to save money, but not at the cost of performance. Though the budget matters, but the specifications of your equipment matters more. So, just think before you buy! For instance, if you are buying a surveillance system for the identification purpose and it fails to produce usable pictures, then the potential loss would be appalling.

3) Must do Product Testing

Product specifications are acknowledged and while researching for the desired equipment, most of the users seek information from the product specification chart only. Although these spec sheets prove to be quite helpful, there are certain things that are not mentioned on them like ability of the system to capture color in low light conditions, how quickly the camera adapts and stabilizes when scene lightning changes suddenly, how the camera’s noise reduction feature handles the moving subject, etc.

Talking about the information, not all the manufacturers are equally objective. Sometimes, they miss out the small details which might have made a huge difference in your purchase decision. Thus, it is recommended that before buying, do comprehensive market research and also test the product, if possible. Checking out the product physically and testing it yourself will make you more confident of your purchase.

4) All security cameras are not the same

It is very vital for a surveillance system to always work, no matter how challenging the situation is, whether it is snowing or stormy. Moreover, the cameras that can stand (come with strong casings) against illegitimate access, invasion, and vandalism, to a good extent would certainly be the best ones. It is also suggested that you should consider your locality or area before investing in surveillance equipment, so that the outcome is as per your expectations.

5) Transmission quality of the video

During monitoring process, it is pertinent to have good transmission quality. For instance, if you are supervising the authorized access of vehicles to a particular area, then you would need VTQ of higher definition that can handle low light situations compared to the video quality of cameras capturing pedestrian traffic. And, only HD recordings captured by HD cameras can offer that much of fine detailing. Thus, do talk about ‘quality’ while buying a system.

6) Imaging sensor: You can’t record, what you can’t perceive.

There is an image sensor inside the camera that senses and transmits the images. The subject will not exit unless it is captured by the surveillance camera. Hence, it is important for the sensor to capture and record each image that goes across the camera’s field of view for future purposes. These imaging sensors are responsible for the color, frame rate, resolution, and sensitivity of the scene too. Therefore, these gears would certainly play a major role in your buying decision.

7) Redundancy elimination

Most of the security departments face redundancy difficulties. This is because you can’t keep too many guards for security. And, even if you recruit enough of them, still what is the assurance that they will always respond on time and especially, during an emergency?

Redundancy can be eliminated by opting for Smart Surveillance technology that can be operated under the supervision of lesser number of guard(s), who can help in the monitoring process. This will also increase the guard’s response rate to manage the disturbances as they would know where to go and when. By using this setup, you can keep track of the events yourself too. Hence, this is an efficient and better form of enforcing security.

After reading this, I hope you are now aware of the things to be kept in mind while you are thinking of investing in surveillance.

Scripts to Convert More Cosmetic Patients


more cosmetic patients

You lose more cosmetic patients and profits every day and don’t even know it because it’s so subtle.

What I mean is your staff may not be doing anything overtly wrong; however, what they are doing is not getting you closer to a YES.

There is a saying that goes, “small hinges swing big doors” and that is as true in the aesthetic industry as anywhere else.

In this case, the small hinges are the words your staff is NOT saying to help you get to the next step in the patient process.

Strategic scripts said at the right time with the right voice inflection make the difference between “I gotta think about it” to “Yes, I’m ready to move forward!”

Let’s break this down so you see where the right scripts would make a big difference.


more cosmetic patients

It doesn’t matter how high-tech and gorgeous your Website is if your receptionist can’t convert a caller to an appointment. What does matter is them asking for the appointment in a strategic way that encourages the caller to book a consultation.

It’s quite common for the receptionist to be polite but allow the caller to control the call and that’s never a good idea. The way to control a call is with your own questions so a good mantra for your staff to remember is “Ask a question with a question” so when the caller asks, “Do you do X?” and you don’t because you use Y technology, your receptionist says,

“Yes Karen, Dr. Smith did a lot of research on the various fat reduction technologies and while he found X to be good, he found Y to be even better. He can explain the differences to you and show you the results during your consultation. I see we have an opening this Thursday at 4pm or would a morning appointment be more convenient for you?”


more cosmetic patients

Or what happens when the caller asks the dreaded question, “How much is it? It’s not a good idea to withhold that information from a caller because they will hang up and call your competitors to get a straight answer so be prepared with a strategic answer.

Have your receptionist first pre-frame you as the best choice with logical reasons and then answer the pricing question strategically like this,

“Well Connie, Dr. Smith would have to see you to determine exactly what needs to be done and quote you an exact fee. But here’s an idea of what you can expect. The fee would include his surgical fees, the operating room costs, the anesthesiologist’s fees, the necessary lab work, and the post-operative garments. That could range from $5,500 – $8,000 or start at $120 per month if you use our easy pay plan option. How does that sound?”


“I can tell you we are price competitive with the “other” board-certified plastic surgeons in the area.”

Or, at least have your staff pre-frame you as the best choice BEFORE the price is given:

“Sara, just to give you a little more background about Dr. Smith, he’s performed more than 3,500 of these procedures and he’s even trained other surgeons so you’ll be in excellent hands. The fees start at $4,500 and vary depending on many factors. Let’s go ahead and schedule some time for you to meet with Dr. Smith so he can give you more details. I’ve got one opening left this week on Thursday at 2pm or would next week be better for you?”


more cosmetic patients

The biggest reason you experience no-shows is that the new prospective patient doesn’t know you so they don’t feel any personal obligation to show up for their appointment.

Charging a consultation fee helps a lot. However, the approach taken in presenting it results in very different responses. There can be no confusion about money at any point during the patient process so here’s a sample script to make it clear:

Consultation Fee

“Karen, let me explain our process. The consultation includes an initial consultation with Peggy, our patient care coordinator. She will learn about your concerns and tell you more about the procedure and Dr. Smith. Dr. Smith will then examine you and talk with you personally about your concerns as well as solutions… you will then return to Peggy to go over any other questions you may have and, at that time, she will discuss financing options with you as well as possible procedure/treatment dates…

Now the entire consultation process takes from 45-60 minutes and costs $150. By the way, the $150 goes towards the procedure when you book within 30 days. Shall I look for a certain day and time for you or just give you our next available appointment?”

However, if you are hesitant to charge a consultation fee because your competitors don’t, you can present a hybrid script like this:

Reservation Fee

“OK Karen, you are all set for Tuesday at 3pm and I will need to get a credit card from you to reserve your time with Dr. Smith. We don’t charge your card as long as you give us 48-hours notice should you need to change your appointment. Would you like to use your VISA, Master Card or AMX?


more cosmetic patients

After working with patient coordinators for more than 20 years, here is the #1 reason they don’t convert more cosmetic patients. They don’t ASK FOR A DECISION!! They very politely present the facts and then wrap it up by saying something like, “OK, I’m sure you need time to think this over so please don’t hesitate to call me with any questions that come up”.

NO!!! The coordinator must have the confidence to ask for a decision right now, face-to-face because that could be just the nudge the cosmetic patient needed to make a decision. A lot of patients don’t have the confidence in their own decision-making skills so they turn to the coordinator as their aesthetic advisor to help them decide. And it doesn’t need to be pushy. Here are strategic ways to move the prospective patient to a decision:

“Connie, since you want to look fantastic for the Holidays, we need to get you on the calendar so do you have a date in mind or should I just tell you our next available?”

“Sara, did you want to move forward with the 0% Interest-Free Easy Pay Plan I showed you or just use your own credit card?”

The easiest way to implement the converting tips above is to have your staff write them out on index cards and review them every day until they become second nature because it’s not just WHAT you say but HOW you say it.

The more conversational and caring you sound using the scripts, the more consult conversions you will enjoy!

Need help with staff training? Schedule a Free 30-Minute Strategy Call with me to discuss the best plan for your practice!

Please visit my website for details.

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