Supply Chain Management or SCM, is a concept in Supplier Management System. This concept stresses on strong partnership and synergy between manufacturers and suppliers. Thus promoting a win-win situation for both parties, and is ultimately targeted to satisfy consumer needs.
Since academics and industrialists have not defined SCM, it is therefore still very much a broad concept rather than a more focus practice like the Kanban System (Just-In-Time). As such, SCM will generally takes the form of promoting greater out-sourcing; greater supplier autonomy; sharing of information; forging closer ties between suppliers and manufacturer; and the use of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).
Throughout the course of the seminar, many case studies were discussed to reveal the various practices of SCM in different industries. For example, the case study on Asahi Beer focuses on how the brewer revived its market by using SCM to improve its distribution system between the brewer and its distributors/wholesalers. Fuji Xerox uses SCM to reduce its costs of developing new products through the introduction of Early Supplier Involvement (ESI). DELL Computer, probably the first company that introduces the SCM concept embarked on the bold idea of being a manufacturer without factory. This is made possible through the use of EDI to manage suppliers of various components in different geographical locations. Visit to the Thai International Airways Catering Services focuses SCM practice on procurement of material and services.
Depending on the size of the manufacturer, implementing the SCM concept can vary in scale. It could be limited within a particular department, e.g. the distribution chain of Asahi Beer, to the entire company’s operation like DELL Computer.
However, it is the study on the implementation of Matsushita Electric’s SCM that best describe the advantages and pitfalls of the system. Firstly, Matsushita describe the SCM concept as a way to reform Matsushita’s business structure and processes with cooperation from its partners; suppliers and dealers, who share the same values regarding the company’s Basic Business Philosophy, management ideas and the use of IT. The key success factor is that all departments including those responsible for material procurement, development, design, manufacturing and sales, implement weekly management cycles. This means that manufacturing and sales turnover can be conducted on a weekly basis, enabling shorter lead times, reduction of excess inventory and cash flow improvement. This will then enable the company to accept order on a weekly basis from large-scale retailers who are well advance in the introduction of Electronic Ordering System (EOS). Since the launch of the SCM campaign, it has led to both an increase in sales and a reduction of local inventory.
The introduction of SCM will see the demise of old practices in the following areas:
- Order Processing (from manual to computers)
- Communication (from fax, mails, etc., to Electronic Data Interchange)
- Procurement System (from Individual Procurement to Group Procurement through Web-Based Database)
Some of the challenges that Matsushita faces are in the area involving EDI. Although Matsushita’s Procurement Policy stresses to promote material localization to strengthen the power of supporting industries, many of the local suppliers are not well in advance on IT, carrying out data exchanges could pose a problem. Similarly, the cost of implementing an EDI system that synchronizes the information between manufacturer and supplier can be costly and time consuming.
Understand the Other Side
Solve the other person’s problem to your advantage. Gather as much information as possible about their situation. Specifically, you need to know:
- Any existing time, industry, and/or financial pressures.
- Their corporate goals & objectives.
- Their specific goals for negotiation.
- Their options if they don’t make the deal with you.
- The personal goal of the negotiator.
- Who makes the final decision on the deal.
Research involves the process of gathering information before you sit down at the negotiating table. Discovery consists of asking questions to learn more about the other side during the actual negotiations.
Smart negotiators spend more time on research & discovery than do actually negotiating the deal.
The more information you have, the greater your ability to solve the other person’s problem to your own advantage.
Plan Your Approach
Having a planned approach to the negotiations always leads to a better deal. Understanding of your own position by identifying the three different deal scenarios:
- Best possible outcome – when everything lined up in your favor, what would your best deal look like?
- Worst acceptable outcome – least acceptable outcome whereby you can still sign a deal.
- Expected outcome – the deal you are most likely to walk away with.
the best dealmakers always prepare 2 other key elements
- Walk-away-point – this sets the absolute limit on the least favorable outcome you will accept. Know when the deal can do more harm than good for your company.
“More deals are killed by ego than any other factors.”
- BATNA – identify your “best alternative to a negotiated agreement”. Do you have a plan B?
Built the Relationship
If you want to cut a good deal, take the time to build the relationship before getting into the actual details of the deal.
- Exchange information – Win-win deals are created by enlarging the pie, not splitting it. This requires sharing information on both sides.
- Active listening – Ask questions. Never assume you know what the other party wants.
- Acknowledging the other party’s needs – People have a need to tell you what they want, if you don’t hear them out, they won’t perceive that your company can meet their needs
Solve Their Problem
To create a true win-win deal, you have to solve the other person’s problem as well as your own. Learn these three things during the discovery phase:
- What the other side values – asking open-ended questions like “Tell me more about that. How do you see this working? What happens next? What will that do for you? How will this help you reduce costs or increase productivity?”
- What are they looking for in the deal – keep asking questions until you get their real core issues.
- Their “Never agains” – negative situations that have happened to the other person in the past and guide all their future negotiations
Enlarge the Pie
Fixed-resource negotiations involve win-lose propositions because one side gets more and the other gets less. Expanded-resource negotiations involve finding ways to exchange things of varying value so that each side walks away with a positive outcome.
- Gather as much information about both sides.
- Identify items of value for both sides and list its order of priority.
- Avoid the temptation to bargain and compromise. Instead, get creative about ways to exchange items of value so that both sides get their needs met.
Stay focused on the desired outcome for the deal.
Make the Numbers Work
CEOs love to quantify things and reduce them to numbers because they are easy to work with. They love precise formulas for the numbers and the rationale behind the numbers always counts for more than the actual numbers. Knowing about the method the other side uses, the better your chances of reaching a win-win deal.
- Clarify rules & structure of the deal. Know the guidelines, goals, how the deal work and who is involved.
- Communicate as much as possible. Make a request for clarification on even the slightest items because it establishes communication and gives you an edge.
- Question all assumptions. When the other side hands you some numbers doesn’t mean you have to accept them. Always question the assumptions and/or ask for clarification.
- Show how you are different. Demonstrate how your product will help their bottom line. Show what makes you different from your competitors.
Focus on the risks as well as the benefits. There are only three things that can go wrong for the other side – it costs the company a lot of money, the decision-maker gets fired or the deal doesn’t work. Tactfully inquire about the risks if they do business with someone else and let them imagine their own scenarios if something goes wrong.
If you do the first five steps properly, working out the numbers becomes almost a formality. The key to any successful negotiation is to enlarge the pie by changing a fixed-resource negotiation into an expanded-resource negotiation. You do that by gathering information, identifying items of value to each side and looking for ways to exchange them. When you do these things well, you will cut deals that work for both sides.
1. ACCEPT THE UNCHANGEABLE
Understand that the past is history – we cannot change what has passed.
It is a complete waste of time and energy thinking of undoing past event.
- It’s a waste of time when we spent too long on thinking about missed opportunity.
- It’s a waste of energy thinking of revengeful past.
- It’s a waste of time and energy lamenting past events.
Learn to Forgive – we need to forgive our trespassers. Concentrate on what’s going forward and what you should do next. Remove any obstacles that is preventing us to go forward.
ACTION – Write down past hurts/pains and throw/tear/burn the paper to symbolizes letting go of past misfortunes.
2. CHANGE THE CHANGEABLE
Change your reaction.
- Control your own thoughts & actions.
- Do not act on reflex, subconscious habit or emotional impulse.
ACTION – Start writing down in your diary / PDA one thing that you will do tomorrow to help you relax more during and after a stressful day.
3. AVOID THE UNACCEPTABLE
- Go out of your way to get out!
- If people tailgate you, change lanes.
- If people follow you at night, drive to well-lighted public area / to police station, etc.
- If you meet a loud, rude person, change table / restaurant. “Do not add fuel to fire”.
- Come back to the person when the weather is better.
ACTION – Ask yourself, what is one unacceptable behavior you have or allow others to do to you that you will avoid starting tomorrow?
Eg. Change the way you drive, change the company you are with from negative to positive people.
We can’t change others, but we can change ourselves.
After the N series Nokia designed a new model for its portfolio; the new Nokia E71 under the Eseries. This model prides its 3.2 megapixel camera with digital video zoom and a LED flash. Using advanced technologies, Nokia E71 is capable of supporting 8GB microSD memory card and has a 110 MB internal dynamic memory. It has a 2.36 inches screen size and 320 x 240 pixels resolutions which should be good when viewing pictures.
Nokia E71′s QWERTY keyboard is designed to fit the slim casing. Typing your text will not be a problem. Running on Symbian OS 9.2 S60 3.1 Edition, E71 can send and receive emails with attachments. Designed to view and edit Microsoft applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint through Quickoffice. It can also support email protocols such as IMAP, POP and SMTP. Connecting to the Internet is not a problem. With a built in Nokia browser, E71 can let you browse the Internet.
E71 can be your partner in entertainment. It supports audio and video formats such as MP3, WMA, MP4, 3GP and other well known format. It allows you to record and has a built in Voice commands and a Text-to-speech feature. Pair it with the Nokia Bluetooth Headset BH-602 and you’ll blast with full entertainment.
Other applications include Dictionary, PDF Viewer, ZIP Manager and File Manager. Viewing those attached emails in PDF format is not going to be a problem. It`s perfect for business or personal need. This is the phone that you have been waiting for.
TEC Speaker John Asher, chairman of U.S. China Business Solutions, Inc., has been helping businesses connect with China since 1980. He says that understanding 10 simple rules will help manufacturers who want to establish relationships there.
- Take time to build a sound relationship with your Chinese counterparts. Absolute trust must be established, since the Chinese have no faith in the legal/court system. It takes time to develop trust. Plan on this stage of the process taking at least six months of continuous dialogue. Establish the right structure for your relationship in China.
- Establish the right management structure for your relationship in China. The road to China is littered with companies that have tried to go at it alone and failed. There are a number of ways to do it, including:
- Turnkey operations
- Using agents in Hong Kong or Taiwan
- Using agents in China
- Using several different types of joint ventures
- Owning your own factory
As you proceed through this list, the savings increase, as do the risks.
- Look for a Chinese partner with strong quality and process control. You cannot depend on certification from the International Standardization Organization (ISO). QS Certification (used in the automotive industry) is more dependable.Find out whether your potential partner can be quickly qualified to manufacture to your standards. If your prospective manufacturer is too far below your required standards, the time lag to get up to speed could be prohibitive.Conversely, if your potential partner is too large or too quality-focused, and if you would not represent a significant part of their business, you might not be able to get the attention you need. You don’t want to become low priority for them.The best match is when you find a small manufacturer just achieving your level of quality control.
- Engineering is needed on both sides. Examine the high-tech capabilities of manufacturers. You are looking for their Web and CAD-CAM capabilities in particular.
- Plan routine trips to China. You will need to go twice a year to get the “face time” that builds and maintains relationships in China, unless you are looking for a turnkey structure.
- Understand the logistics. If you will be shipping by sea, for instance, expect a six to eight week allowance for delivery of products. Therefore, just-in-time inventory systems may not work. Your costs may go up. You will need to maintain a higher level of inventory to support your customers. It is also useful to maintain a backup U.S. supplier — stuff happens!
- Understand the “rules of thumb” for costs of manufacturing. For example, labor costs are typically $.50 per hour and the labor content of manufacturing costs is typically 5 percent. Generally, your manufacturing costs can be reduced by 30 percent to 50 percent, depending on the structure of the relationship. (See point #2.)
- Recognize the importance of family relationships in China. Business networks are based on familial ties. For example, the father owns the factory and 11 relatives work in it. An entire family might be involved in the factory, which helps them diminish the impact from the sudden loss of a key employee, but might not always be the most productive organizational structure.While you might find it inefficient, it’s a fact of life — not a problem you can fix.
- Plan to participate robustly in social activities. Business is conducted through social interactions more in China than in many places. Dinners, drinking, tours and sightseeing are all part of a continuum to daily commerce and are important in building relationships and establishing the trust that is mandatory in doing business in China.
- Politics are important and special favors show your commitment. The politicians are in control. You need their approval for almost everything, including a business license.
Gifts are part of the social-business mix too. Give them liberally. Accept them graciously.
Be especially “giving.” By doing special favors and contributing generously to influential individuals, you are identified as a committed partner who is in for the long haul.
John Asher was a member of a TEC group in the Washington, D.C. area for eight years and has been a TEC speaker for the past six years.
Created for MyTEC. Copyright 2005, TEC Worldwide, Inc. All rights reserved.
Published with the permission of Vistage Malaysia.
Online social media sites are popular among Internet pros and regular people. People are creating blogs, airing their views on public forums, and communicating with others like never before. But to succeed, you need to use Twitter effectively. It is important to know what to do and what not to do. Below is a list of five common mistakes people make while using Twitter.
1. The tendency to put out too many Tweets. The whole notion is to tell other users what you are up to, or what you are doing. Be simple and to the point. Don’t waste time over unnecessary tweets.
2. Spamming with affiliate links. Spamming never works. Some people think it is worth sending out tons of tweets. The content remains the same, and ceases to be effectual after a while. They put up affiliate links on their web pages and wait for the results to show. The fact is, they never do.
3. Trying to say too much. You have only 140 characters to get your message across. Think before you act. Do not type at random. It is not possible to convey your marketing message or ideology in this short space, so don’t even try. What you can do is direct your followers to a blog or article on your site that contains your message in greater detail.
4. Tweeting about you constantly and not chatting with others. Twitter give you a chance to get in touch with people who might be useful for you. You can’t do this through mail.
Tweeting about yourself is okay, as long as you know when to stop. You can take a healthy interest in what other people are doing too. You have to be a follower occasionally. Congratulate the people in your network if they come up with good ideas or lead you to an informative article. Answer any questions they might have. Twitter is a tool that helps you build stable relationships. It may not be a giant leap, but baby steps? Yes, sure.
5. Not adding value to your followers. As in any other Internet venture, Twitter is dominated by people who place appropriate values on their followers. Choose a good leader to follow. You don’t want to follow someone who is always posting nonsense or giving away content.
Twitter is smaller than MySpace and Facebook, since space imposes a limit on you. But it is still a great way of getting to know like minded people online. Use Twitter with care, and people will start following you automatically.
The list of social networks has multiplied over the last year or so. What started out as a few lists to try and get in touch with old friends, or long-lost classmates, has grown into a multi-million dollar industry. The trouble is, are they as useful as their owners suggest, or are they just another part of present day society where computers and mobiles phones are taking over so much of our lives, without giving much back in return?
It is all too easy to write off social networks as just another time-wasting activity of kids and teenagers, spending countless hours talking nonsense and small-talk until the early hours rather than using their computers as an aid to their homework. However, in truth, they are as important a part of modern communications as the phone was half a century ago.
In an ideal world – which is probably the target objective of social networks – not only will they be a superb medium for people to meet and socialise out of their working environment for whatever purpose – be that dating, of any other socialising activity – but there is an unseen power that will shortly be at anybody’s fingertip that will be a boon to keeping a rapidly increasing economy.
In any economy, there is a market for a product or service, and there are consumers of those products or services. Can you imagine how efficient a marketing based economy would operate, if it were to be possible to have an actual method of describing all products and services available, with a matching table of ready consumers?
That may well be the sort of environment that we are heading towards, but in the mean time, we are slowly and shakily moving towards such a scenario, which at present is far from perfect.
We have a situation today where there are a growing number of social networks available, some purely for socialising – almost like time-filling for kids, and others for users with time to kill- but an increasing number of others who perform a supplier to consumer role, and yet others who perform a business to business role.
The secret is to be able to identify from the ever increasing plethora of social networks, as to which one falls into what category. Choose the wrong one, and whatever you would hope to achieve by using that site will be totally wasted on you.
Choosing the right one to meet your actual needs is very important. Not only would you be able to direct your bulletins towards a clearly identified market, but advertising on such sites would be so highly targeted, that advertising returns would return a fantastically high returns on your investment.
Social networks are here to stay, and as they improve, and identify their purpose more clearly, they have the potential of really ramping up any section of the economy in almost previously unheard of levels of efficiency.
The power of social networks of course, is in its power to spread the word virally. Unlike a sales pitched email, in theory it would only take one satisfied customer to write a short review on his or her social network, and the message is out. This person may have 47 other contacts, and some of those may have thousands, and so the message could in theory get sent to thousands upon thousands of contacts.
In an era of totally changing buying habits, then social networks can help many suppliers overcome the obstacles of buyers to move away from conventional shopping, towards more and more on-line consumer outlets.
Geoff Morris has seen the power that social networks can do when promoting your online business. One of the fastest growing social networks is Twitter (Twitter.com). Want some help with building your networks, then if you don’t have a Twitter account, sign up now; or if you already have a Twitter account, log in, look for me, Geoff Morris, and start to follow my ‘Tweets’ to help your business grow. http://www.Twitter.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Geoff_Morris
As we enter into what many enlightened souls are calling the most dire economic times since the Great Depression, online marketers need all the help they can get; regardless of the source. You have probably heard of Google; but chances are almost 100% certain, you have never heard of me. Lucky you!
Actually, the only thing you need to know about me is that I am a full-time online affiliate marketer and I make a very comfortable living from the web. Last year (2008), was my best year online so far, which left me scratching my head and saying what recession?
But that may be something of a false positive, as I will never know how much I could have made if the economic times had been good instead of bad. Plus, judging from my own limited experience, selling and marketing online may not have been hit as hard as those businesses in the real world in 2008, since consumers are doing everything to save a penny and shopping online has become a much cheaper alternative for many.
As we enter into these uncertain times, online marketers and webmasters need all the help they can get. Recently, Google mailed a small booklet to its AdSense users; in it Google gives “6 Top Tactics For Tough Times.” It is obviously referring to its AdWords PPC (Pay Per Click) program and clients but Google’s advice can be applied to your own general online marketing.
These tactics include: (quoting directly from the Google mail-out)
1. Focus your ads on low prices and savings.
2. Use Value-related keywords.
3. Ensure your ad groups are targeted and relevant.
4. Don’t waste money on irrelevant clicks.
5. Make it easy for customers to buy.
6. Focus your money on your high-performers.
Sound advice and I especially like the idea of focusing your marketing on low prices and savings mainly because people want bargains in tight economic times. I also like the fact that you must make it easy for your customers to buy… something as simple as putting your “order/buy link” above the fold can increase your conversions.
Also, targeting value-related keywords, is a very effective marketing tactic. Relating your keywords to “discounts, bargains, cheap, inexpensive, lowest prices…” will help increase your sales. So too, is catering to phrases that suggest the searcher is in a buying mind-set: gifts, presents, gift ideas, wedding gifts… shoppers searching those words are ready to buy.
Plus, focusing your time and money on your high-performers is solid advice. Sometimes succeeding online is simply finding a market niche that works/performs — then running with it. Once you have found the keywords and products that perform well with your site or sites — focus the majority of your time and energy developing those niche markets.
Now here are some of my most effective marketing tactics that have worked for me and tactics I will be relying on in the coming years – even in these hard times.
Make Keywords Your #1 Goal
This is the single most important factor for my own online success. You have to make keywords and ranking high for them in all the search engines your main objective if you’re marketing online. Might sound obvious, but many beginning marketers don’t truly understand how important getting top rankings for your chosen keywords will be in your online success.
Target less competitive long tail (multi-worded) keywords to get started and slowly work your way up to more popular keywords. Center your marketing around getting those first page listings (Top Five) for your keywords. Achieve this goal, (especially in Google) and it will be almost impossible for you not to succeed and make a profit with your online marketing even in bad times.
Autoresponders, List Building & Online Relationships
Keeping in contact with potential buyers is mission critical. You must use autoresponders to send follow-up messages to build trustful relationships with your potential customers. Establishing this personal contact or trust is very important because the Internet is still a cold distrustful environment for most people.
So building a large contact list is essential. That’s why the social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace can be very effective marketing tools for building this online contact and trust. Truth be told, all these social networks are, more or less, just glorified autoresponders and list builders!
Your Unique Selling Position
You must give potential customers some very good reasons for them to buy from you or your links. Offering special bonuses and discounts works wonders for your sales. Some of my most successful pages simply consists of coupons and discounts offered by different companies. If buyers can save $100′s OFF by buying through your links, they will.
Always remember, besides looking for the best deal or bargain, consumers are also looking for a quality product. If you’re into affiliate marketing, only pick top quality products to promote. Picking top brand names also makes it easier to make sales. So too is only promoting popular online merchants like Amazon, can be an effective marketing strategy. Most importantly, always remember consumers are also looking for INFORMATION on the products they are considering buying, give them helpful information and you will succeed.
Find A Niche You Enjoy
There are millions of profitable niche markets you can choose from — pick one that truly interests you and run with it. Your favorite hobby or something you enjoy doing in your spare-time. Picking a niche market that you like is a key factor, you won’t mind spending your time exploring and exploiting it. Just won’t seem like work because you will be having fun while you do your marketing.
Go With The Flow
If you’re marketing online, you have to follow what’s working for you. Most times you will try countless ideas or tactics – once you have found a process or system that works, really work it or scale it up. Making your first dollar is the hardest, but once you do something that earns you that dollar, just repeat that “something” a thousand times.
Tracking what works is very important so keep a close eye on your site’s traffic logs to find where your customers are coming from. Something like Google Analytics is simply priceless for “fine-tuning” your site and your online marketing. It will tell you what’s working and what’s not.
Target Recurring or Residual Income
One of my most effective marketing strategies is to promote and sell products and services that give you a recurring or residual income. Make one sale and get paid for years or for the life of that referred client. Concentrate on services like web-hosting, telephone, marketing programs… once customers sign up to these services, they will likely keep them for years. I am still earning income from sales I made five years ago.
Building a large residual income could be the key to surviving in tough economic times. This will be income which will carry you or your business over the rough patches since it is based upon past performance and not on your current selling situation.
o Target the Right Customers And Markets
The biggest advantage of marketing online is you can precisely target your customers and your markets. One tactic I use is to target customers who are likely to buy more than one unit of what you’re selling. For example, if you target Corporate Business Gifts, a boss or employer will not be buying just one coffee mug but ten or even hundreds of mugs.
Even in tough times, seasonal markets will still perform… back to school, mother’s day, Halloween, Christmas market… things might slow down but these markets will still perform even in tough times.
The real beauty of marketing online and using computers… you can automate just about every process in your marketing system. Make it a point of automating everything you do… use autoresponders to follow-up with potential buyers, use automatic check-outs, automatic reporting… just set-up your whole online marketing system that runs itself with little or no supervision from you. This will free up your time to concentrate all your efforts on marketing/promoting your site or product. Besides, nothing beats coming back from a vacation and finding out you have earned the cost of your vacation and then some; all the while you were lying in the sun and miles away from any computer.
Find The Top Online Marketers
If you’re just starting with online marketing, you need to find the top successful marketers and “model” what they’re doing. This is relatively a new industry and you have to seek out the experts and pioneers who have set the groundwork. When I first started marketing online, I was quite fortunate to come into contact with some web marketing heavy-weights such as Marlon Sanders, Ken Evoy, Neil Shearing… and SEO experts like Brad Callen and Aaron Wall.
Often it is just a matter of finding the right “mentor” to follow. You need to study their techniques to improve your own marketing. Perhaps my best advice would be this: find the top online marketers and stick to them like glue!
Make Google Your Friend
Whether you love or hate Google doesn’t matter, you just have to make it your number one ally in your online marketing. Google has just about conquered the world-wide search market, Yahoo and MSN are still important, but Google is the deal-breaker when you’re selling stuff online. Consumers have enormous respect for Google, a number one listing for a lucrative keyword simply means money in the bank. Marketers must realize Google will play a significant role in their online success and may play an ever increasing role in these tough economic times.
I have found using Google Search, Google AdWords, and Google AdSense have played a more than significant role in the success of my own online sites and marketing. Google tools such as Google Analytics, Google Alerts, Webmaster Tools… all have been invaluable and an enormous help in achieving my “web-based” lifestyle and livelihood. Of course, Google has also driven me around the bend more times than I can count, but no one is perfect.
Besides, when it’s all said and done, anyone marketing on the web must truly embrace Google if they want to reach their highest level possible. In good times and especially in these bad times, you must make Google your friend. Your best friend. Even your BFF. When all else fails, trust in Google, forget that other guy. Then again, you better not; for you’re going to need all the help you can get in these coming tough times, regardless of the source.
Everyone has a story! Mine is called: “In Search Of The $100 Click or How I Found A Full-Time Online Income And Came To Love The Internet” It’s located here: Online Income.
Everyone is profiting from the web, find out how you can too! Click here: Best Internet Marketing Training
Copyright © 2008 Titus Hoskins.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Titus_Hoskins
Dining out with that special someone? Taking co-workers or prospective clients out to a fine dining restaurant? Make sure you mind your manners and make a good impression with these tips.
- Keep your Reservations: Fine dining restaurants usually require reservations. To be sure they can accommodate you and your party makes a reservation well in advance. If the amount of people change or the your unable to attend dinner during your reservation time, make sure you call and let them know. It’s common curiosity to tell the restaurant that you no longer are going to be dining there and it’s a a must if you frequent the restaurant or want to make future reservations.
- Dress appropriately: call ahead to find out what dress requirements the restaurant has. Some finer dining establishments have very strict dress codes and may require you to wear certain attire to eat in the restaurant. Don’t cause embarrassment by showing up unprepared; this will only cause you, your guests, and the restaurant great inconvenience.
- Understanding the Menu: Often times at fine dining establishments, entrees can be in languages you’re unable to read let alone say. While it may seem embarrassing to have to ask what a menu item is, don’t assume you’re the only one who has done it. Asking your server will help you choose something you will enjoy and something that will be worth the money you put towards it. If you’ve asked a few questions and still aren’t sure what you want off the menu, ask your sever about the feature entrée or the chef’s signature dish. Chances are the chef’s signature dish is going to be great, so as long as it’s something you think you can eat then try going with that.
- Mind Your Manners: Manners a must at a fine dining restaurant. Be sure to practice chivalry when women are present, this means getting up when they excuse themselves, or pulling out their chairs when they return to the table. It’s also important to practice when receiving your food. Place your napkin across your lap before you eat and when you do get your meal be polite and don’t just dig in. Even if you’re starving and haven’t had anything to eat in days, don’t dive into your meal the minute the server places it in front of you. It’s customary and polite to wait for everyone in your party to receive your food before their meal.
- Wine: Unless you’re a very experienced wine connoisseur, chances are the wine list at a fine dining restaurant can be a little daunting. If you’re not sure what wine to choose, ask your server for suggestions. Your server or another member of the restaurant staff should have a decent understanding of wine and should be able to guide you in the right direction. If the staff seems less than helpful, choose something that you are familiar with. It may be a good idea to read up on your wines before going dining out. This way you can have a few backup wines in mind.
- Tipping: A tip is an essential part of your dining experience and should act as a reflection of the service you have had. The average amount for a tip is between 15 and 20 percent of your total bill. If you had superb service and want to show your server you appreciate them give him or her little extra. If your service was less than subpar it’s okay to tip less, but unless your service was absolutely awful it’s generally not a good idea to not tip at all. Make sure you tip the server based on his or her service. For example, if your meal takes too long or if there is some other problem that stems from the kitchen, don’t punish your server if they have been
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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jennifer_Wasilewski
By Web Editor Paul Diamond
Are you working such long hours to get everything done that you’ve hit your limit? Are your employees not finishing what you ask them to do or creating more problems with poor work quality? Do you often feel that if you’re not there to manage your business, important things will fall through the cracks or not get done right?
If this describes you, you’re not alone. Of almost 2,400 CEOs surveyed on the most recent Vistage CEO Confidence Index, 50 percent say they are more stressed this year than last. Only three percent say they are experiencing less stress, while 44 percent expressed feeling the same amount.
Stress makes you sick…and fat
Stress drives people to overeat, smoke, drink too much or lose sleep, and these problems lead to health issues. Chronic stress robs the joy from your life and lowers your body’s natural ability to fend off disease, specifically migraines, ulcers, heartburn, diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure, heart disease, autoimmune diseases and skin problems. As if that’s not enough, stress is also linked to increased abdominal fat.
Two kinds of stress
Stress release expert Dr. Bin Yang describes two kinds of stress. “Intense stress produces the fight-or-flight response and can increase blood flow by 300 to 400 percent to the lungs, muscles and brain. Chronic stress, the type found in the workplace, has negative effects on our health, emotion and performance.”
Chronic stress leads to anger, hostility or a feeling of being in a constant rush. More than 1,000 stressed attorneys were recently studied and found to be three to five times more likely to have a heart attack, says Vistage speaker E. Lee Rice, D.O.
Strategies to reduce stress
The following strategies can help when you’re not coping well with stress in your life. Every person has a stress “cup.” Once that cup gets full and overflows, symptoms begin to occur. The trick is to recognize when your cup is reaching “full” and have a method for pouring it out.
- Monitoring system. Give your spouse, children, friends, peers and employees permission to tell you when they see the signs of stress getting out of control. If you get angry and defensive, they’ll never tell you. Give them permission to speak the truth.
- Thought control. Says author/talk show host and psychotherapist Barton Goldsmith PhD: “Instead of just thinking about the worst that could happen, think about what the best scenario could be. Then examine what’s most likely to happen, and grab hold of that. Let your mind find a reasonably positive outcome and it will release your anxiety. If this doesn’t work, then you may need to roll up your sleeves and do something deeper about it.”
- Exercise. This is one of the best ways to immediately reduce stress. Moderate, comfortable exercise generates the relaxation response.
- Nutrition and supplements. The higher your stress level, the more vitamins and minerals your body needs. Eat healthy and supplement appropriately.
- Meditation. More than 1,300 scientific studies have documented the benefits of meditation. To meditate, put yourself in a place of relaxation and listen for that “still point” within yourself. Slow down your thoughts so you can have feelings in between your thoughts. Amazing neurochemical changes happen during meditation.
- Getting outdoors. Vistage Speaker, Dr. Paul Brenner recommends, “Time alone, spent in nature” as a way to refocus on the moment. Hiking on your local trail or sitting by the river can clear your mind.
- Relationships. Feeling connected to other people plays a major role in reducing stress. Isolation from others increases stress. “Our relationships with people give us a sense of connectedness, balance, perspective and fulfillment. Many studies show the value of relationships in strengthening our health and immune response,” Dr. Rice says.
- Music and the arts. Listen to music. Read a good book. Watch the sun set. Having multiple-senses imagery causes immediate neurochemical changes that enhance the relaxation response.
Other stress reduction strategies include:
- Having a positive outlook
- Play (fun activity without an end-result in mind)
- Helping others
- Express your gratitude
- Spiritual connectedness
- Deep abdominal breathing
All of these suggestions point toward one truth about stress: Overlooking play, solitude and significant relationships has potential health risks.
Dr. Yang holds two- and four-day executive stress seminars that teach business owners how to utilize, prevent, eliminate and transform stress. The seminars aren’t cheap, but what price would you place on more enjoyment from life, looking and feeling younger, and attaining higher peak performance and productivity?
For detailed information on managing stress, see our Stress Management best practices module.
Created for MyTEC. Copyright 2005, TEC Worldwide, Inc. All rights reserved.
Published with the permission of Vistage Malaysia.