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How to Make Your Small Business Green

how to make your small business green

Last week I was invited to join the board of the Green Connections Networking group based in Newmarket, ON.  I was thrilled to accept and am looking forward to connecting with other like-minded entrepreneurs and small business owners. This new role got me seriously thinking about how I can make my small business green, or at least greener.

My business is web designer and online marketing, which is already fairly green.  I work from home, therefore not contributing to travel emissions on a regular basis. I keep my home fairly cool in the winter, and warm in the summer.  And we ALWAYS ensure the lights are turned off in unoccupied rooms.

But what could I do to make my business even greener?

Reduce Paper Waste

I am an avid note-taker, and can go through journals very quickly. I have tried taking notes on my iPad, but it never caught on.  A client of mine, Heather from Walk It Off Spinal Cord Recovery, introduced me to a device called a Boogie Board.  It resembles and iPad, but is used solely as a writable screen. Although I haven’t tried it yet, she showed me hers and I’m very intrigued! You can check it out here at Staples or Costco.

Carpool to Networking Events

Why not extend your networking experience and set up a series of carpools to the event? Not only can you meet new people at the event, but you can spend more time with people who live closer to you.  Saving emissions and building a network; what could be better!

Support a Green Niche

I am a huge advocate for supporting business within a green niche.  I don’t mean that they specifically have to be in a green industry, but I want to support businesses that do no harm to people or the planet. If their organization has a green initiative then even better! We as consumers and small business owners have the power to drive change in our communities.  If we can make our small business go green, we can encourage our community to too!

What steps are you taking to make your small business green? We would love to hear them in the comments below.

Don’t forget to join the conversation online on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn. And sign up for our monthly news for even more tips.

Until next time,

Deanna

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‘Tis the Season for Local Networking!

Local Networking Tips - Newmarket, Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Uxbridge

In my experience, the two best seasons for networking are the same as the real estate market.  People are rested after the winter/summer holidays, and ready to get down to business in the Spring and Fall.  Make the most of the Fall Networking Season with some ideas for networking groups, and keep reading for my #1 tip for successful networking.

Green Connections Networking Group Newmarket/EG

To kick off fall networking season, I’ve joined the board of a networking group called Green Connections.  Green Connections’ mission is “to explore and share environmentally-friendly practices, products and ideas. Through networking and mentoring, our goal is to encourage all businesses to ‘Go Green’”. I had previously been to an open meeting and decided to join. It just so happened they were searching for a secretary – a position that fits me perfectly!

Networking Events with a Philanthropic Intent

I was recently invited to attend the inaugural Successful Women Achieving Goals (SWAG) event in Newmarket.  The monthly dinners help educate and empower women, while donating proceeds to a chosen charity.  Why not network and do some good at the same time?

Health & Wellness Events

I will also be attending a York Region Women’s Wellness Circle on October 26th hosted by the wonderful Karen Armstrong.  Not only is this a great opportunity to connect with like-minded women in York Region, but also a chance to learn something new about health & wellness.  Nicole Tomingas will be leading us through EFT techniques using the fingers to gently tap on acupuncture points. Very interesting!

Use Your Local Chamber of Commerce

If you’re looking to get involved, now is a great time to visit some open networking breakfasts. Check out your local Chamber of Commerce. They usually host monthly breakfasts open to new members. It’s also a great time to check their schedule of free and paid seminars.  There are lots of opportunities to learn about social media marketing, online marketing and e-commerce.  Not only can you learn a few things, but you can also use this as an opportunity to network.

My #1 Tip for Successful Networking

I have been networking for over 10 years.  My biggest piece of advice is… LISTEN!  Engage in conversations, listen to what others have to say.  Ask questions, listen to their networking pitch, but only offer yours if they ask. This is the best piece of advice I can offer, and has worked incredibly for me.  If someone takes the time to ask what I do, they are more likely to listen to what I have to say.

Does Your Business Card Stand Out?

When they do ask what you’re all about, make sure that your business card stands out. Whether it be a great logo, an awesome design, or a thick card stock.  Make a lasting impression.  My business card has my logo large on one side, and is in a thick matte stock.  I made a contact at a networking event, and she kept my card for a full year until her business required my services.  My card made that impression.

Nervous about attending your first event? Contact us and tag along!  Sign up for our newsletter for even more tips.  You can find us everywhere online on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

Until next time,

Deanna

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Sustainable & Liberating: Why I Love Being a Virtual Admin

virtual admin newmarket working remotely

Canadian winters are long, and you can usually find me in my office, wrapped up in a large blanket working away until the early hours of the morning.  The sun doesn’t come out much so who can keep track of time?  But it seems we are (usually) rewarded with incredible summers and falls. Let’s hope this year is just as warm and sunny as last year!

When summer comes around, I am especially thankful that my career allows me to work remotely from almost anywhere. Even from the cottage or on the dock, I can hot-spot my cellphone and work from my laptop.  With modern technology I can manage my business from anywhere.

What Does a Virtual Admin Do?

I’m a Virtual Admin, or Virtual Assistant.  I specialize in helping entrepreneurs and small businesses with some of their day-to-day work that can be done remotely.  This helps reduce their workload so they can concentrate on running their business. I am also a WordPress website developer, building affordable websites for small businesses. And other work that can be done remotely like social media marketing, blogging, newsletters, etc. Read more