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third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

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latinbiz

10

14

The Official Publication of Latin Business Club of America

Editor

Monica Puig editor@latinbiz.net

latinbiz latinbiz Publisher

The Official Publication of Latin Business Club of America

8

Latin Business Club of America publisher@latinbiz.net

25

Magazine Design

Cris Ascunce, CAT Graphix, Inc. The Official Publication of Latin Business Club of America info@catgraphix.net Contributing Writers

Laura Adams, Samantha Asher, Maureen Collins, Heather Eager, Shane Eubanks, Norma E. Galeana, Paul Hecht, Mark Holmes, Kim Marcille, Juan G. Robbin, Mark Aurelio Sandate, Jane Smith Staff PHOTOGRAPHERS

Cris Ascunce, Joshua Stier, Rodolfo Barandiaran cover:

© Giordano Aita Online at:

www.latinbiz.net Advertising Sales

23

inside. . . 8 10 11 12 14

305-573-1369 • sales@latinbiz.net latinbiz is the official quarterly publication of Latin Business Club of America, a networking organization dedicated to promote businesses within the Latin community, unite Latinos in our business efforts, and foster understanding between Latinos and other Americans.

Printed in the U.S.

www.latinbiz.net 305-573-1369 © 2003 – 2008

4

latinbiz n third quarter 2008

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21 22

Felipe Madrigal Leading with a Vision Staples: Making Customer Service a Priority latinbiz Third Annual Women of Virtue Get Commitment, not Submission, when you Manage Performance Problems Surviving the Economic Times:Ten Ways to Safeguard Your Small Business Three Real Estate Investment Rules You Dare Not Break

in every issue. . . 6 16 19 20 22 23 24 25 26 27 28

Message from the Editor Media Survivor Security Finance Real Estate SmallBiz: Where Have All The Good Employees Gone? Auto Talk/Coffee Break Travel Biz Announcements/Earth Talk Technology/Law Networking


SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS: What has your business done for you lately? Drained your cash? Sapped your energy? Put your lifestyle at risk?

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*Sponsored by Latin Business Club of America & Institute for Independent Business

MASSolutions, LLC. ROAD Map to your Business Destination. 561-210-7008


Message from the editor Back in 1924, while building IBM into a magnifi-

grandmother used to say “By the fruits, you shall know

layoff news, reasonably, might make your employees

cent force, Thomas Watson declared, “We progress

the roots.” It was not until I was older and she had

uneasy about their future within your company. Let

because we are willing to change.” The truth is that

already passed on that I finally understood what she

them know what is expected of them to ensure that

we are always changing, whether we are aware of

meant by that. As individuals and through our busi-

said vision is met—their job security depends on it!

this process or not. Sometimes, it might be spiritual

nesses, we can accomplish great things for our com-

You’ll find articles in this issue to help you and your

experiences that cause us to change; at other times,

munity, our clients and our country, but we must have

team get through these hard times.

the change within us arises from the choices we make

strong roots vested with the right intentions. Our ac-

These difficult economic times may bring us de-

during circumstances in our lives. Consciously or un-

tions are our roots, and even making a few daily calls

spair at some moments, but I have strong faith in our

consciously, we are always changing the way we view

will keep you manifesting your intentions for growth.

fighting American spirit that we will prevail and I sin-

the world and ourselves. It amazes me how adaptable

Maybe you will not see results immediately, but while

cerely believe that these times will also serve to unite

we are to change in our personal lives, and yet how

you are continuing to replant those roots, you are

our business community and our nation. Remember,

resistant we can be to change in our businesses when

embracing this change in our economy as something

there is always something positive and new in the ho-

change is a proven necessary element for growth.

positive and full of possibilities. What is the alterna-

rizon that you still cannot see. So NEVER lose hope!...

The change in the economy is serving as a

tive? You close your company and go be at the mercy

We are with you!

wakeup call for many small business owners who

of a big corporation who might cut back your position

bravely grew their businesses to a comfort zone and

three months from now.

have limited their goals to reaching the same amount

So, let’s grab our businesses by the horns and put

of revenue every year. Small businesses are the back-

the same enthusiasm and passion into them that we

President and Founder

bone of America’s economy and when entrepreneurs

did when we started our businesses eight, twelve or 25

Latin Business Club of America

limit our dreams, we are limiting the job opportunities

years ago. Let’s share our vision with our employees

and quality of service and products that are out in the

to ease their tensions about losing their jobs (income).

market. If it sounds like a lot of responsibility, it is!

Empathy and compassion goes a long way, especially

Leadership comes with great responsibility my fellow

now when many faithful employees are getting the

entrepreneurs, as well as continuous replanting. My

boot across America with no prior notice. The constant

St. Thomas University museum’s inaugural exhibition ‘United in Faith: Archdiocese of Miami, 1958-2008” celebrates the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the archdiocese. St. Thomas University (STU) inaugurated the Archbishop John C. Favalora Archive & Museum at the University Library. The inaugural reception and dedication launched the new archive, museum and research center at the Archdiocesan university. The institution will be devoted to collecting, exhibiting and making accessible documents and artifacts related to the history of Catholicism in South Florida, where immigrants and the Cuban exodus played a crucial part. It will encompass the archives of the Archdiocese of Miami, St. Thomas University, National Office for Black Catholics and other special collections. The materials include a collection of over 200,000 photographs, 2,000 video recordings, historical documents and publications such as the Archdiocesan newspapers The Voice and La Voz. In addition to hosting exhibitions, the Archive and Museum will also launch a web portal to provide public access to selected materials in digital format. Archbishop John C. Favalora and Rev. Monsignor Franklyn M. Casale, President of STU, at the official inaugural ceremony of the John C. Favalora Archive and Museum at St. Thomas University. 6

In unity,

latinbiz n third quarter 2008

Monica Puig

biztalk with Monica Puig

Sundays at 1:30pm • WZAB 880 AM The Biz

The October 2 inaugural event also marked the opening of the exhibit “United in Faith” celebrating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Archdiocese of Miami. The exhibition includes artifacts, photographs, and video recordings selected from the permanent collection and from private collectors and parish churches throughout the Archdiocese. More info: www.stu.edu or 305.628-6664.


uribe guerra

“Soy volcánica e irrefrenable. Creo que mi manera más positiva de otorgar algo bonito es siendo quien soy.” -Ely Guerra, cantante y guitarrista.

diseñodesempeño "Creo que todos los objetos diseñados, hasta los más utilitarios y abstractos, tienen una raíz profunda en la observación de la naturaleza.” -Federico Uribe, artista contemporáneo.

G

El Infiniti El sedán deportivo único, donde el diseño y el desempeño se encuentran. Todo lo que incluye el detallado G está diseñado para funcionar de forma intuitiva, transformando tu manejo diario a una lujosa y vigorizante experiencia en el camino. El Infiniti G con 306 caballos de fuerza. Infiniti. Seleccionado por los propietarios como la marca de vehículos de lujo #1 en satisfacción.* Visita Infiniti.com/espanol. quarter n latinbiz 7 *Fuente: AutoPacific 2007. Utiliza siempre el cinturón de seguridad; evita el consumo de alcohol si conduces. Infiniti y los nombres de los modelos de Infiniti son marcas registradas third de Nissan. ©20072008 Infiniti Division of North America,Inc.


bizfile Felipe Madrigal:

“If you are not networking, you are not working.” Few people in South Florida’s business scene have not heard of Felipe Madrigal or the Doral and Airport West Chamber of Commerce, which he presides.

Q. What has been the highlight of your ca-

Through the chamber, Madrigal brings to

al rewards. Many years ago, my youngest son

A. Rotary Clubs offer a single individual the

its members value in the form of: promotion,

wanted to join the Cub Scouts in his elemen-

wonderful opportunity to make a marked differ-

activities, referrals, discounts, and much more.

tary school, so like a good dad, we went to the

ence in the lives of those who are less privileged.

But that’s only what retains them, what attracts

evening meeting only to find out that for my

Rotarians are invited members of the single

them in the first place is Madrigal’s intoxicat-

son to be admitted his dad had to volunteer as

largest professional volunteers association in the

ing energy, charismatic spirit of unity, and his

they were short of help.

world, with over 1.200.000 Rotarians, their ef-

reer?

Q. What was the best advice you ever received? A. Be truthful, honest and hold to high

A. Unquestionably the good fortune to

moral standards. In true Rotarian fashion “Ser-

have been able to serve my community in may

vice above self.” He who serves best benefits the

different capacities. Over the years, my passion

most.

to serve others has provided immense person-

Q. What does being a Rotarian mean to you?

natural bounteous manner of bringing people

That allowed me to hold my first ever

fort, and financial contributions have been cred-

together. Latinbiz sat down with Madrigal to

volunteer job, and have been a constant com-

ited with eradicating “polio” worldwide, and we

learn more about the great community leader

munity volunteer for the last 25 years and

are now in the process of making potable water

and his plans.

counting.

available to those in need around the glove.

S mall B usiness B I G L i f e presente d b y Fe d e x

Louis Barajas

Anly Liu, President of Florida China Chamber of Commerce; Carlos Salguero, Marketing Specialist, Fedex; Monica Puig; and Felipe Madrigal, President of Doral and Airport West Chamber of Commerce during Small Business BIG Life with guest speaker Louis Barajas. Hyatt, Coral Gables, FL

As part of an ongoing commitment to support South Florida’s small business community, Latin Business Club of America and Doral and Airport West Chamber of Commerce hosted “Small Business BIG Life” presented by Fedex, a complimentary speaking engagement and networking event with nationally recognized author, speaker, and financial planner Louis Barajas.  The event was also sponsored by Latinbiz, Eastern Financial Florida Credit Union, Aflac, MAS Solutions, and HACE, Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement. 8

latinbiz n third quarter 2008


Q. The best advice you ever gave?

venues ranging from education to different op-

ARE NOT WORKING.”

portunities for them to grow their business, one

Q. How do you see your ongoing role as a

in every aspect of your life. You simply cannot

business at the time.

community leader?

stuff a 20 lbs bowling ball in a grocery paper bag

Q. What is one of the greatest benefits offered

A. Continue for as long as the Good Lord

and expect it to hold.

by your chamber that both members and non-

permits me to actively participate in and bring-

Q. What do you feel are some of the biggest

members alike can start taking advantage of

ing to our community events that bring the

challenges that small business owners will

today?

business and residents together.

face in the next two years?

A. Without a doubt the Chamber is South

Q. What are your plans for the future?

A. Do your best to organize your agenda

A. Challenges are part of the tapestry of

Florida’s most active Chamber offering a vari-

A. To continue to strive in making a differ-

every day life. The real challenge is for us as

ety of different networking venues thus provid-

ence for humanity. There is no money in the

individual leaders, entrepreneurs and members

ing opportunities for attendees—to “initiate”

world that can satisfy the enormous gratifica-

of our community is to be able to look through

relationships that can bring fruits in the near

tion derived from seeing a small child reaching

the maze and identify those few, but available,

future.

out to an elderly person, or when a family in

opportunities that will translate into profitable

Q. What does networking mean to you?

distress offers a smile for a small act of good

A. Networking means having a unique op-

will, expressing their thanks for your assistance.

ourselves.

portunity to establish a dialogue with a perfect

Mitigating human suffering in whatever small

Q. How can the Doral and Airport West Cham-

stranger and in the process labor to further crate

way make a marked difference in humanity.

ber of Commerce help businesses especially

a relationship, in a business or social setting that

Q. What was the greatest lesson you ever

during our down economy?

will continue to produce tangible benefits for

learned?

results. We must be able to constantly reinvent

A. At the Chamber “it’s all about business.”

years to come. Over the years, I’ve been called

A. That no one can do or change anything

As advocates for the business community we

Mr. Networker, perhaps for the very active pres-

for you, you must accept full responsibility and

must do what we can to assure a biz friendly

ence that I have maintained throughout thou-

effect changes in your life one day at the time.

environment while empowering each and ev-

sands of events in South Florida. I’m proud

ery one of our members to reach their full po-

to have coined the now famous phrase, “RE-

tential. That is done through utilizing different

MEMBER if you are not networking... YOU

More info about Doral and Airport West Chamber of Commerce: www.dawcc.org n

third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

9


bizfile

Leading with a Vision By Kim Marcille kim@possibilitiesamplified.com

In Yogi Berra’s 2007 commencement speech to the graduating class of St. Louis University, he said, “Be careful if you don’t know where you’re going in life, because you might not get there.”

slowed because everyone is working on their own defi-

this partner, it turned out to be the least profitable, most

nition of success. Once you’ve clearly defined your vi-

cumbersome set of clients she had. Because she had her

Yogi’s latest take on his own funny and famous

sion and shared it, your activities, the activities of your

vision firmly in mind, she established a minimum profit

quote from years ago certainly describes the unfortu-

employees and the resources of your business will

margin she would accept, as well as a minimum client

nate situation that many professionals and business

come into alignment with that common destination.

size. With these new metrics in hand, she began to seek

owners find themselves in.

other, more lucrative partnerships that would help her to

While focusing on the tactical nature of doing

A vision sets a tone of success. A vision is

business, the strategic vision is often lost, and in some

something to reach for. It creates hope and sets expecta-

By establishing and communicating a vision, you

cases it never gets established in the first place. We’re

tions. If it’s compelling enough, it will inspire and mo-

make a statement that says, “This is what success looks

sure that we need to make the month. We’re sure that

tivate. The key to extracting this value from your vision

like.” Simply choosing performance measurements that

we have to pay the bills. We know that we have to keep

is to communicate it passionately and consistently over

reflect the vision will guide the organization toward its

our customers happy if we have any hope of survival.

time. Your employees and your business partners will only

achievement, and keep business activity on track.

But in the end, will the business activities we engage in

buy into the vision as much as you do. If you allow the

A vision need not be written in stone, and you should

every day deliver the end result we wish for?

vision to lay fallow or fall by the wayside, then it’s likely

expect to revisit it from time to time as the market, the

We can only answer that if we know what the de-

to be treated as “the flavor of the month.” The more you

organization and its leadership all evolve. But before a

sired end result is. What will your business look like

engrain the vision into daily operations, the more powerful

vision can be revisited, it first must be visited. When de-

at its most successful moment? In other words, what

it will become. By weaving the vision into daily planning,

ciding whether or not you have the time to dedicate to the

is the ultimate state of your business? Armed with a

performance reviews, staff meetings and company reports,

creation of a vision for your business, keep in mind this

crystal clear and compelling vision of your destination,

you can make it part of the fiber of the organization.

quote from Christopher Reeve: “If you don’t have a vision,

you can lead your organization to accomplish it. Here

An important side benefit you’ll receive is that the

are some ways you can leverage your vision to create

more you focus on your own vision, the more it will

At least, nothing different than what you’ve got go-

change in your organization.

become a natural part of you. Your belief in the organi-

ing on right now. If there’s something more you’d like to

zation’s ability to achieve the vision will drive the belief

achieve in your professional life, make the necessary in-

of others.

vestment of time to get clear about what that is. It’s an

A vision encourages business and personal alignment. In the absence of a clear strategic direction,

10

achieve her vision.

nothing happens.”

investment with a very high return.

employees and even business owners will do what they

A vision determines the right metrics. A cli-

think will provide the most value in the given moment, as

ent of mine was being pressured by a business partner

Kim Marcille is an expert on the science of ampli-

they individually define it.

to close her own business and come work for his. She

fying possibility into reality, and the practical applica-

Whether you know it or not, you’re operating ac-

was debating how to handle this issue, because they did

tions for both people and businesses. Her 25 years

cording to a personal vision right now, and every per-

a nice volume of business together. Her vision, however,

in business leadership ranges from small business

son in your organization is as well. Even if everyone

was to triple the size of her business and sell it in three

ownership to Fortune 500 executive experience. More

has the best intentions, growth of the business will be

years. When we analyzed the business she was doing with

info: www.PossibilitiesAmplified.com. n

latinbiz n third quarter 2008


Staples. Making Customer Service a Priority By Norma E. Galeana When entering a Staples store, you will be welcomed by a friendly greeting from an associate near the counter, followed by the question: “What can I help you find?” You might also notice that everything in each aisle of the store is visible from the entrance; this is not a coincidence, since Staples developed its store format with the goal of making it “easy to buy.” That’s why the stores have adopted a system called “Easy Service,” which includes monthly training for each department’s personnel and strategic locations for the merchandise. Staples stores also participate in the mystery shopper pro-

ditionally, Staples offers the convenience of free delivery for orders of $50 dollars

gram to ensure that customer service

or more.

levels are being met at all times.

To shop on line, or for more information about Staples’ South Florida and nation-

“We have specialized personnel in

wide locations visit www.staples.com. To inquire about the Staples Rewards program

every department, which means that if

call 800-793-3320, or visit any Staples store. Whether shopping on line, by catalog,

the customer purchases a computer, we

or in-store, the positive experience will find you saying “That was easy!” n

ensure that he gets the cables needed for installation and even the paper and ink for the printer,” explained Andy Garcia, district manager for Staples Miami stores. Part of “Easy Service” is doing our best to satisfy the customer with good service, which is why Staples uses the “mystery shopper” system. Staples hired a company specializing in grading customer service. To carry out the operation, they send the mystery shopper to make purchases in the designated store just like any other customer. The process includes each one of the store’s various departments. Once the operation has concluded, the mystery shopper has the task of evaluating the service and likewise, subsequently, the process is repeated once a month at different Staples stores. Thanks to this system, Staples recently received the highest grade in the corporation’s history. “Customer service is an essential part of the corporation because the competition basically offers the same products that we do, so we have to make a difference with better service,” assured Garcia. Another program that customers find beneficial is the Staples Rewards program, which consists of returning a monetary percentage on the purchases that are made at Staples in the form of a check. The basic program only consists of obtaining the card, which returns up to 10 percent of the total amount spent on ink & toner, paper, and copy & print center purchases. The checks are sent by mail and can be

Stanley Scott Makes House Calls. We can sit down together in the comfort of your own home and consider insurance and financial products that can help protect you now—and in the future. Call me. Stanley Scott Financial Services Associate The Prudential Insurance Company of America 2 Alhambra Plaza Ste 1050 Coral Gables, FL 33134 Office: 305-442-1022 ext. 7258 Cell: 321-693-2331 www.prudential.com/us/stanley.scott Stanley.Scott@Prudential.com

used to make purchases at the same stores. When more than a thousand dollars is spent annually, the customer is automatically upgraded to premier status and qualifies for additional benefits. Obtaining a Staples Rewards card is as simple as providing the required basic information such as the business’ name, address and telephone number. Staples makes buying office products easy with more than 70,000 items available through their Web site, catalog or at Staples’ 18 South Florida’s locations. Ad-

©2008. Prudential Financial. Insurance issued by The Prudential Insurance Company of America, Newark, NJ, and its affiliates. IFS-A0553262 third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

11


Women of Virtue Awards latinbiz Third Annual

Photography by: Luis Hellmund

Presented by

LatinBiz celebrated its Third Annual Women of Virtue Awards luncheon honoring thirteen outstanding women in South Florida ‘s community. The annually sold-out luncheon commemorated professional women who through their virtue and their work bring about social and economic change, support of other women, serve as outstanding role models, and demonstrate outstanding performance within their professions to further advance women in their fields. The event took place at the Intercontinental Hotel in Doral, September 18, 2008 with awards ceremony First Row (L-R): Diana Wasserman-Rubin, Broward County Commissioner, District 8 and First Mayor of Broward County; Josie Perez Velis, Attorney at Law; Amy Tinoco, Owner, Ooopsy the Clown & Co; Sandra Fernandez, President Women’s Council Of Realtors Miami-Dade; Tonya Scholz, President kNOw-Aging, Inc. and President, The Association for Women in Communications South Florida Chapter; Lucy Morillo, President of Miami Children’s Hospital Foundation; Melanie Cohen, President and Founder of SocialMiami.com. Back Row (L-R): Kareen Besson, Coach Kareen and Director of Venezuelan Business Club; Lilia Garcia, Former Administrative Director for the Division of Life Skills and Special Projects, of the M-DCPS; Anne Freedman, President of Speak Out; Sandra Ruiz, Councilwoman City of Doral; and Mary Riedel, CEO Women in Distress. Missing from the photo is Ruby Ortiz, Professor for the management programs, FIU, and CEO of RO International.

emcee, NBC 6 weekend sports anchor and weekday sports reporter, Adam Kuperstein. The talented soprano Nydia Noriega opened the ceremony with the singing of our national anthem and closed it with “America the Beautiful.” Kim Marcille, an expert on the science of amplifying possibility into reality, and the practical applications for both people and businesses, was the Keynote Speaker. To learn more about the nominees, visit www.latinbiz.net/2008women.htm. Latinbiz thanks for their generosity and support our Presenting Sponsor Aflac, and our sponsors: Eastern Financial Florida Credit Union, Staples, Latin Business Club of America, MAS Solutions, HACE, Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement, Indigo Events, 1360am WKAT, New York LIfe, CAT Graphix, latinbiz, MOSA Web Design, Rey Production Services, Doral and Airport West Chamber of Commerce, Broward County Chamber of Commerce, The Florida State Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, The National Society of Hispanic MBAs, Biztalk, Chef to Go, the Doral Business Council, The Association of Women in Communication, LISTA, Miami International Wine

Left: Honoree Lucy Morillo and Marcia Diaz de Villegas. Right: Honoree Tonya Scholz and Julia Wakefield.

12

latinbiz n third quarter 2008

Fair, Dan’s Video Creations, and the Work-Life Balance Institute for Women.


1

2

3

4

5

6

From left to right: 1. Anly Liu, Al Otero, Felipe Madrigal, Julio Fuentes; 2. Dr. Silvia Flores, Honoree Diana Wasserman-Rubin ( First Mayor and Broward County Commissioner, District 8), Honoree Mary Reidel (CEO Women in Distress), Susie Levan; 3. Honoree Lilia Garcia (Administrative Director for the Division of Life Skills and Special Projects); Gloria Ruiz; 2007 Woman of Virtue, Dr. Susan Angulo; 4. Rosy Cancela, Monica Puig, Alice Fisher, Honoree Melanie Cohen; 5. 2007 Woman of Virtue, Gladys Mezrahi; Kim Marcille; 2007 Woman of Virtue, Mariana Montanaro; Lula Folgosa; 6. Sheena Kwaterski, Hector Vilchis and Cristy Tenhagen.

third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

13


Get Commitment, not Submission, when you Manage Performance Problems By Maureen Collins Managers sometimes act as if talking straight with people means telling them

When the issue is important and you know exactly how you want it to be re-

what to do and then watching them closely to make sure they do it. This management

solved, you are even more likely

style may get the work done, but there is not likely to be much commitment to it.

to focus on the solution that

Many managers do indeed talk straight. They identify problems, decide on solu-

YOU want, pushing harder

tions, allocate responsibilities, and communicate it all to their people with standards

and harder to persuade,

and deadlines. For many reasons however, things often do not turn out as planned.

convince and if necessary,

When that happens, managers react by talking even straighter, and often louder, with

bully the other person into

more instructions, clearer priorities, and more deadlines. But still the job is not done!

submission.

Management would be easy if only people would do what they have been told to do. And they have been told: straight!

The problem is that when someone is not

Although managers say they want to obtain commitment from their people, the

committed to a plan of ac-

process they use to do so goes wrong right from the start, and before a single word is

tion, then every obstacle,

spoken. It is all about mindset. When you approach a problem with an employee with

no matter how small, is an

the intention of getting the person to solve the problem using your solution, you have

excuse for non-performance. If, as a manager, you do not obtain real commitment to

already lessened any chance you had of obtaining commitment to that solution.

action, it is more than likely you will find yourself facing the same problem some time

With this mindset it is likely you will start by describing the problem, then jump into describing the solution you have decided will work, and when the other person obeys your instructions with a muttered, OK, you take it as a sign of commitment.

later. However, when you obtain commitment from an employee, no problem is too big to prevent the goal being achieved. Submission is not commitment. Today, employees expect to be involved in decisions. They want to think and decide for themselves. They demand responsibility and

You’ve worked hard to establish a thriving business.

they have career ambitions that involve their personal growth and development. Most managers recognize that developing their people is one of the most important roles they play, but often lack the communication skills to make it happen successfully. Managers need to focus on getting into dialogue around problems. They need to hear ideas from others. They need to work with their teams, helping each other think creatively through possible solutions before developing the best of them for implementation. What makes us believe that other people think better if they take on OUR thoughts without question? It can be difficult to hold back on offering ready made solutions to problems you have seen many times before, especially when you are under pressure to deliver against standards of quality, time and budget. Sometimes, it is the only thing you can do. At other times however, you need to slow the thinking process down and use every opportunity to encourage employees to think through problems and their solutions,

PROTECT IT PROPERLY WITH SOLUTIONS FROM METLIFE. As a business owner who has successfully grown your business, you may be asking yourself: • How do I attract, reward and retain key employees, while keeping costs down? • How can I ensure the continuation of the business should I or a partner become disabled? • How can I provide value-added benefits for my employees? • Can my business support my family if I am no longer at the helm? I’ve helped many business owners like you take the necessary steps to solve these and other financial issues affecting their business. If there are any specific areas you’d like to address, please call me today.

Brigida Billini, Financial Service Representative One Alhambra Plaza, Suite 5 Coral Gables, FL 33144 Office: 305-446-3268 Ext 155 Cell: 954-540-1552 bbillini@metlife.com

For the if in life.

®

Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, New York, NY 10166. MetLife Investors USA Insurance Company, Irvine, CA 92614. First MetLife Investors Insurance Company, New York, NY 10166 (NY Only)] MetLife, Inc. ©UFS 0709-5858 L10072227[exp1109][All States]

14

latinbiz n third quarter 2008

for themselves. The more they are involved in generating solutions, the more they will be committed to ensuring their success. Resist the temptation to assume you have all the answers. Ask your people what they think; find out how they see the situation; and be prepared to consider views different from your own. Then step back and watch as new and creative solutions emerge. Talking straight does not mean doing all the talking. Maureen Collins has a B.Sc. degree in Psychology from Edinburgh University and over 25 years of consulting experience. She specializes in communication skills in the business world. In Straight Talk, she trains people how to handle difficult conversations, on difficult topics, with difficult people. Get free Straight Talk Tips at www.straight-talk.co.za. n


Save the Date! February 26, 2009

HACE’s Latino Career Forum A Special Event for Latino Professionals Don’t miss this exclusive opportunity to spend an evening meeting your future employer. HACE will carefully select employers to participate in this event, and we will select candidates who match these employer’s recruiting needs. The companies who will be with us this evening will be specifically looking to meet talented Latino Professionals. HACE is very proud to introduce Miami’s Latino talent to our Fortune 500 clients, government & non-profit organizations.

• Only 150 pre-screened candidates will be accepted. • Onsite interviews will be conducted.

Event Hours: 5:30 p.m - 9:00 p.m. More news to come in December, 2008

www.hace-usa.org third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

15


mediasurvivor Building and Maintaining Relationships During Tough Times Expense pressures make a lot of companies look at marketing costs with a gleam in their eyes. Aha - here’s a good place to save some money! If that has happened to you, chances are your spending is way down and there’s a decent chance that revenue is down as well.

By Mark Holmes Director Marketing Services Eastern Financial Florida Credit Union Mark.Holmes@effcu.org

The expectations for bringing in the business don’t necessarily run

after an installation or repair. Any business that serves a product that has

in line with the marketing budget. You are still expected to make the door

routine maintenance or evaluation requirements needs to be reaching out

swing open with new or repeat business. If marketing money has gone

on a schedule. Annual maintenance on air conditioning systems, routine

bye-bye, then a lot of advertising has gone with it. It’s time to turn inward

car service, even checks on lawn mowing equipment could all be sub-

and mine your existing customers for additional business and referrals.

jects of routine reminders.

Awkwardly enough, this is a strategy you should employ regardless of

Know this - if you are not staying in contact with your customers, someone else is stealing them from you. It takes incredible loyalty for a

the economy or your marketing budget. Most surveys will tell you that the best chance of deepening a rela-

customer to stay with a provider. In that same spirit of stealing customers

tionship is when it’s new. The first ninety days of a new relationship is

from other providers, sort through your contacts of potential customers

the honeymoon period, when you have hopefully wowed your customer

and clients that you’ve met but just haven’t gotten around to contacting.

to the point that they are coming back for more and telling their friends.

A well placed call or card can start a conversation leading to business. It

Sometimes, a little push can help.

may take five or more follow ups to get the business - in fact, almost 80%

Send out a follow up thank you card a week after the first encounter

of new business comes after five to twelve contacts. This is relationship

or purchase. At this point, you either have a new customer or a warm

building time. It may cost you a lunch or a few dollars in postage and a

lead. A phone call may be better, depending upon your business. With

few phone calls.

a written note or card, you can include your contact information, a small

Go to chamber and community events and spread the word with ef-

gift or other prompt that may result in an immediate response. If nothing

fective networking. Prospect for business and do your follow up calls or

else, your follow up effort reinforces the good feeling the customer has

mailings, reminding the contact of your discussion and offering to meet

about you. For the first follow up, stick with a thank you. Don’t do a hard

for additional information. Keep a focus on building a relationship and

sell at this point.

keep your order book in your briefcase at first. You’ll know when it’s time

After one month, do another follow up. A card, a letter, a call or even

to ask for business.

an email if you know the person responds to email. If you know there

Try to use an integrated contact management system to track con-

has been repeat business or a referral during this time period, let them

tacts, important dates and to keep notes. One system that combines these

know how much you appreciate the business. And now you can mention

features with the ability to send customized postcards and greeting cards

a special offer or plant a reminder about a need you may have already

is by Send Out Cards - a totally online process offering an affordable and

discussed.

effective way to build relationships through personalized direct mail and

You should also reach out to existing customers, especially the ones

if so desired, to create a revenue opportunity in a MLM environment.

who drive revenue. If you have been keeping any kind of contact manage-

It is viable for personal as well as business needs. More info go to:

ment system going, you should know who is ready to hear from you. A

www.socreview.com/ssh for personal use, and www.soclink.com/ssh

roofing company may want to do a courtesy roof inspection several years

for business use to see brief videos that explain the concept. n

JOSIE PEREZ VELIS Attorney at Law

Wills and Inheritances

(305) 444-8899 2100 Ponce de Leon, Blvd. Suite 1111 Coral Gables, FL. 33134

josieperezvelis@yahoo.com

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latinbiz n third quarter 2008


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security

Protecting Yourself from

Work-fromHome

Scams

By Heather Eagar

other end of the computer and therefore should take extra measures to ensure the opportunity is real. One way you can get this done

As the Internet becomes more popular, there are increasing opportunities to not only become employed by this medium, but

Legitimate

is by asking for a list of other employees or contractors that have worked for them to get more insight into who this company is.

also work from home while doing so. However, not every online

Also, you can take advantage of websites that are dedicated to

opportunity is trustworthy. There are tons of scam artists ready to

catching scam artists, such as ScamBusters.org. And you can also

take advantage of the naïve.

check with the Better Business Bureau to see if a company is legiti-

companies or

This is not to say that there aren’t any legitimate work-from-

mate. However, it will be more difficult to catch online scammers in

opportunities

home jobs. You just have to learn how to catch the signs of a scam

this way because they don’t have to register as a business in order

artist. So before you begin your search for an at-home job, let’s

to act as one.

will treat you no differently than those that can be found in an office.

explore the ways you can protect yourself from being scammed.

Use Your Common Sense. One thing you have on your

Don’t Give Out Too Much Personal Informa-

side when searching for a job is common sense. It may take a while

tion. Handing out personal information over the Internet has al-

to develop online common sense, but it will come. This way, if an

ways been a no-no. And the same goes for applying for jobs. There

individual or company claims that you can make $5,000 a week

will be many scammers out there asking for social security informa-

stuffing envelopes from home, you’ll know it’s probably too good

tion, date of birth, and more. But don’t give out anything until you’re

to be true.

sure you’re communicating with a legitimate company.

The same goes for unsolicited emails saying that someone has

Also, you’ll want to be careful not to hand out your credit card

found a job for you. In time, you’ll automatically delete them and

information. This is especially true if an “employer” is asking you to

know you’ve probably been placed on a 3rd party mailing list with

pay for supplies or other information before they will accept you for

thousands of others who have been offered the same “job.”

a position. Legitimate companies or opportunities will treat you no

Finding a legitimate work-from-home job opportunity can be

differently than those that can be found in an office. In other words,

very rewarding. However, to avoid getting caught up in the scams,

you should not be asked to pay money in order to obtain a posi-

try to conduct plenty of research and use your common sense. This

tion. So be careful before you disclose anything too personal about

way, you can avoid the nonsense and get straight to finding your

yourself until the nameless, faceless entity on the other side of your

perfect at-home job. n

computer is represented by a legitimate person or business.

Heather Eagar is a former professional resume writer and is pas-

Conduct a Thorough Background Check. Back-

sionate about providing working professionals with current, reliable

ground checks are particularly important when searching for em-

and effective job search tools and information. In need of a resume

ployment online. Again, you cannot see the representative on the

writer? Compare the top ones at www.resumelines.com.

third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

19


finance

Living on a Budget By Samantha Asher When you hear ‘living on a budget’ you might think ‘no fun, no life’. Living on a budget does not mean you have to cut out everything fun and lose your social life. If you are in severe debt, you might need to live without a social life for a little while until the debt is paid, but for the ordinary person, living on a budget is neither hard nor a restriction. Living on a budget is simply a responsible way to live your life and reduce a lot of stress while you’re at it. Setting up a budget is not hard at all. A budget is only a thought out plan of how you will spend your money. Instead of getting your paycheck and spending it where needed and then spending the rest aimlessly, you make a plan of how it all will be spent in order to avoid debt and start saving. You must save money if you ever want to buy a house and if you want to retire comfortably, if at all.

buy a 2 dollar coffee every morning 5 days a week, you are throwing away 10 bucks

Living on a budget assumes that you are going to try to save money in some

a week. Make your own and you can easily save 5 dollars or more. Or, if you buy a

places in order to free up money for other places. For example, if you want to save an

pack of gum every week when you get gas for $1.20, that’s almost 5 dollars a month

extra $50 a month, you can cut out $50 a month from your food bill or you can split

or 60 dollars a year. Now, instead of just saying in your budget, “30 dollars a month

the savings between food and eating out. To effectively budget, first figure out how

for extras”, cut out all the extras. If there’s anything you must buy, write down that

much money you spend now by writing down all you spend for at least a week or a

specific amount. So, if you must have gum, put down $5 a month for gum.

month. Then you can start allotting specific amounts.

Living on a budget doesn’t have to be restricting and difficult. The initial set up is

A simple way to help save money while budgeting is to cut out the little unneces-

the hardest part. Also, if you find it too hard, adjust it until it works for you. Budgeting

sary things you buy on a regular basis. By budgeting, you are telling yourself exactly NYL70501_MMF_LatinBusinessClub4.5x5.5 shouldn’t be hard, but it should save you money and reduce stress life. If1you 8/8/07 7:07 inPMyourPage how much you can spend on what, so be as specific as possible. For example, if you want to know more about how to budget, go to www.BudgetingMadeEasy.info.n

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3/5/08 9:49:14 AM


Surviving the Economic Times: Ten Ways to Safeguard Your Small Business If you’re a small business owner, you are likely wondering if you’ll

Depending on what kind of business you have, different economic

become a casualty of these tough economic times. Ed Hess and

events will affect you in different ways. Find a reputable website for

When times get

Charles Goetz authors of the book So, You Want to Start a Business?

your business sector where you can get free news about your industry.

tough you need

8 Steps to Take Before Making the Leap say you do have a fighting

Staying informed will help you know which way to navigate your busi-

chance-but you need to stop the hand-wringing and start taking ag-

ness.

to let your

gressive action to safeguard your business. Here are a few small busi-

late-paying or

1. Obey the Golden Rule of Small Business: Protect your

ness safeguarding tips they provide:

6. Re-examine your credit terms. You are running a business, not a charity. When times get tough you need to let your late-paying or no-paying customers know that it is time for them to pay up.

no-paying

credit! As the credit crunch worsens, it is critical that you make sure

7. Manage your inventory. Keeping a close eye on your inven-

customers know

your business has the best credit possible to ensure you can get a loan

tory will help you conserve cash and clean up your balance sheet. That

if you need one. Make absolutely certain you are paying your bills on

way when credit loosens you will be among the strong firms that banks

time. Don’t let anything fall through the cracks.

are willing to lend to.

that it is time for them to pay up

2. You can’t show your employees the money, but you

8. Keep an eye on your competitors. There’s no better time

can show’em the love. You need your employees to be on your

to know exactly what your competition is doing. If your competition

side now more than ever. Show them every day how much you appreci-

seems to be thriving, figure out why. You might want to copy some of

ate them. You’ll be surprised how much goodwill a handwritten thank

their techniques. If they’re not doing well, you need to know that too,

you note can create. And while you can’t give raises to show your ap-

for other (obvious) reasons.

preciation, there are other ways-for example, have lunch catered once a month or show up with doughnuts and coffee one morning.

9. Get feedback from your customers. Keep communication lines open between you and your customers. Make sure you know how

3. Make outstanding service your “secret weapon.”

the bad economy is affecting them. Use surveys, comment cards, and

One area in which a small business should always excel is customer

one-on-one conversations to find out how you can better assist them

service-good economy or bad. But when times are tough and custom-

during these tough times.

ers have less money to spend, they really care that they’re getting a

10. Create an online presence if you haven’t already.

lot of bang for their buck. Talk to your customers frequently-see how

A great way to stay in front of your customers and attract new ones is

you can help them in these tough times. The closer you stay to them

by maximizing your presence on the web. Make sure you have a great

the better!

website that is easy to navigate and that makes it easy for visitors to

4. Figure out where you can cut expenses. Do a line item check of your expenses and really think about what you could do with-

purchase your products or contact you to discuss what your business can do for them.

out. Some cuts may be obvious, but, to figure out the less obvious

“So, You Want to Start a Business? 8 Steps to Take Before Mak-

expenses, be sure to involve your employees. Because they are on the

ing the Leap” (FT Press, September 2008, ISBN: 978-0-13-712667-

front lines every day, they may have a better idea of what can be cut.

5, $18.99) is available in bookstores nationwide and from all major

5. Keep abreast of the news in your sector or industry.

online booksellers. More info: edhltd.com or ftpress.com. n third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

21


realestate

Three Real Estate Investment Rules You Dare Not Break By Paul Hecht Almost anyone can make money in an appreciating market. The real skill is making money in a flat or down market like we find our-

clear with $150,000 you didn’t have before - courtesy of your renter

selves in right now. In this article I am going to share with you the

who has, in effect, given you a free savings account.

only three things you need to know to make money in real estate in

Once you sign the mortgage papers and lock in your terms, you

both good times and bad. Knowing these three rules and abiding by

are guaranteed one thing - you know what the loan balance will be

them will allow you to sleep well at night even as those around you

year after year. So it really doesn’t matter how much your total price

lie awake in panic.

is as long as somebody else’s is paying for it and the income covers

Rule No. 1 - Invest, Don’t Speculate. Perhaps the costliest

Don’t use any of

mistake novice investors make is thinking they are investing when

Rule No. 3 - Don’t Buy Based on Emotion. Rule No. 3 is to

what they are actually doing is speculating. Speculation is risky be-

keep your emotions -- mainly greed and fear--in check. This is per-

cause it leaves a lot to chance. Investing, on the other hand, involves

haps the trickiest of the three rules because even seasoned investors

having a well-thought out plan that is as close to foolproof as pos-

get tripped up by it. If you are an emotional investor you can get

sible.

sucked into the fear of not getting into the market; being left behind;

cash flow from a

watching your deal slip away; thinking you will die broke, worrying

property, even if

How can you tell if you are investing or speculating? If the only way you are making money in real estate is when the price increases

that the market will collapse or leave you behind.

your job income to support negative

your accountant

- then you are speculating. If you follow Rule No. 2, outlined below,

I too have been guilty of losing money on an investment property

you will be certain that you are investing, not speculating on some-

because I could not rein in my fear. It happened with one of the first

says you can use it

thing you can’t control.

investment properties that I ever bought; a $10,000 foreclosure that

as a tax write-off.

Rule No. 2 - Don’t Pay for Real Estate Yourself. Don’t put

had emotion written all over it if I had only been willing to listen. I ig-

yourself at risk. Don’t use any of your job income to support negative

nored the obvious when renovation quotes came in 30 percent higher

cash flow from a property, even if your accountant says you can use

than I had budgeted. I remained unconcerned that the property was

it as a tax write-off. This is risky. What happens if you lose your job?

located in a low-income, high-crime rate area too. I let my emotions

Not only will you lose your own home, you’ll also lose all your in-

and my need to “do the deal” over rule common sense. I lost more

vestment property. Before you buy an investment property, determine

than $30,000 on that property - a very expensive lesson.

if you will be able to collect enough money from your tenant to meet

But I learned an important lesson: Before you sign on the dotted

the mortgage - plus ALL the expenses of maintaining the property.

line ask yourself if you have followed Rule No. 1, Rule No. 2 and Rule

If you determine that you cannot collect enough rent to cover the

No. 3. Once you are certain that you have done so, commit yourself

mortgage, property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, utilities, repairs

to the deal and sleep like a baby. n

and vacancy allowance -- don’t buy it!

22

ALL the expenses.

Paul M. Hecht is an author, investor, real estate agent, invest-

By following Rule No. 2 you are better protected from market

ment coach and host of the radio program The Real Estate Invest-

downturns and can confidently hang on until the market eventually

ment and Success Show. He is the author of Everyday Real Estate

comes back up again because you know that your renter is the one

Millionaires: How Average People Really Do It. Visit http://www.

covering the expenses - not you. Imagine, for example, that you have

PaulMHecht.com to receive 3 free Wealth-Building reports: How to

purchased a $200,000 property and your rental income covers all

Make a Million Dollars and Retire with Only 2 Houses Regardless of

your expenses. Let’s say that the property value falls to $150,000

the Market; How to Consistently Earn 8 to 14% Interest on an IRA,

and stays there for the next 30 years. Did you really lose money? No,

401(k) and RRSP; and The 7 Mistakes Beginner Investors Make That

you did not. At the end of that period you will own the house free and

Gurus Don’t Tell You.

latinbiz n third quarter 2008


smallbiz

Where Have all the Good Employees Gone? They already work for you!

By Mark Aurelio Sandate One of the common complaints I hear from small business owners all over the country, and across all industries, is how it is tough to get good help these days. The consensus is that most employees only care about themselves and do not try to do what’s good for the company. Many small business owners respond by either just accepting mediocre performance (believing if they want things done right they must do it themselves), or by constantly replacing poor performers. Obviously

lutely! If you don’t know what results you expect out of your company,

both of these scenarios lead to unsatisfactory results for your company. What’s the solution?

how can you expect your employees to work towards that? Start by defining your goals. Then, understand how each employee

First, accept the fact that at least 80% of your employees are work-

in each area contributes to achieving that goal. Next, help them under-

ing for you to meet their own personal objectives. Most do not make the

stand it too. Make it clear their contribution is necessary and valued,

decision to work for you because they want to advance your company

and then formalize the expectation (not only in job descriptions but in

to the next level. And most will only continue to work for you as long as

your processes as well). Establish follow up procedures that let your

there exists a perceived benefit to them.

employees know you will be checking on progress in short intervals...

If you are not

I am not saying they are not good employees. Think about it; with-

getting the

out them, where would you be? What I am saying, however, is they need

This not micro-management. This is Result Oriented Management

to be managed! If you are not getting the expected results out of them,

Behavior. The focus is on ensuring they are reaching the objectives in

it’s likely not their fault; it’s yours! Ouch!

their respective positions in an efficient manner. These objectives when

expected results out of them, it’s likely not their fault

So what are you doing wrong? Let’s start with expectations. Do your employees know what you expect out of them? I normally get a “Yes!” to

and then do it!

rolled up should mean your business as a whole is reaching its desired results.

that question from the employers, and a “No!” from the employees. To

The kicker is that your employees’ perceived benefit of working for

see who’s right, let’s take a step back and ask another question: Do you

you will go up dramatically. Not only are you simplifying their work life,

know what you expect out of your employees? And I don’t mean how

you are giving them the financial security that can only be provided by a

busy you want them to be; I mean, do you know the results you want

well run successful company. Sounds like motivation to be productive

from their efforts? (Ahh... a whole different question isn’t it!?)

to me!

I’m willing to bet the answer is “No.” And even if you have given it

Tune into the next issue to learn more about how a Management

some thought - have you taken the time to formalize their responsibili-

Accountability System can finally maximize your most important busi-

ties and then share them? And if you have done that - have you taken the

ness asset - your employees! n

next step and given them the tools and appropriate level of authority to

Mark A. Sandate is a speaker, author, and founder of MASSolutions,

accomplish their duties? Finally, and perhaps most importantly - are you

LLC - a business advisory firm specializing in small business growth.

holding them accountable?

For more information, and to inquire about our workshops and/or a free

What!? Is all that really necessary to get them productive? Abso-

business consultation please email MASSMyBiz@mas-solutions.biz.

third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

23


autotalk The 2009 Ford Flex: Cool styling, fresh interior and a superb ride Ford has gotten its mojo back ! By Juan G. Robbin With its distinctive and innovative design, the Ford Flex is the hippest crossover on the street today. The road presence and look of the Flex is unmistakable in a world chalk full of similar crossover designs. Areas and curves of the innovative interior were inspired by the distinctive canister vacuum cleaner

buttons and knobs are pleasant to see and use. We had

come in either silver or white hues. There is a fuel door

designs of the 1940’s and 1950’s that are part of the

a chance to drive the Ford Flex between New York City

with a twist, no screw-on gas cap. The door itself is the

collection of the Flex chief designer, Mr. Richard Gres-

and Greenwich Connecticut recently with the optional

cap, so simply open the fuel door and start pumping

ens. As luck would have it, Mr. Gresens was pondering

Nav. package that included the new Microsoft SYNC

the gas.

how to approach a specific interior curve. He sat back

voice activated and rear back up camera technologies.

Driving the Flex through country roads was a treat.

and looked across his studio and instantly noticed the

We came away thoroughly impressed by the way the

Handling feels more like a sedan than a crossover, wind

arc of the vacuum cleaners’ canister section and there

information is presented in addition to the quality of the

noise is almost non existent even at highway speeds.

it was ! The curve he needed.

display graphics. We loved the SIRIUS Travel Link fea-

The interior was quiet enough that conversation was

The driver and front passenger seats are notice-

ture: Giving us weather, real time traffic and fuel price

easy regardless of where one sits in the Flex.

ably comfortable. There is a new seat architecture

information. The quality of the display is impressive,

Without a doubt, the Ford Flex is one of the most in-

and design that is being introduced in the Flex and

specially seeing the dynamic weather map feature. The

novative and interesting vehicles to come out of Detroit

will subsequently cascade into upcoming Ford mod-

Ford Flex integrates current technology seamlessly,

in years. If you are looking for a cool, multi-use vehicle

els. Second row seating area is impressive not only

enhancing how we live our lives. Bravo Ford!

or simply want to be noticed as one of the “hip crowd,” then the Ford Flex should be on your short list.

in comfort but also in the leg room offered. There is

One of the distinctive design features of the Flex

an optional refrigerator in between the second row

are the side panel grooves. These grooves give the

Starting at $28,295.00 for the SE and offering a

captain’s chairs that is sure to be a hit with families.

car a smoother, longer feel to it. We specially liked the

V6, 3.5 liter, 262 HP engine, the all new for 2009 Ford

Third row seating is comfortable, more so if the op-

integrated front rocker panels that are attached to the

Flex, spectacular! Popular options include: Skylight

tional dual skylights are ordered. The steering wheel

door instead of the frame, no more dirty pant cuffs!

roof, SIRIUS Sat radio, SYNC hands free technology.

feel and feedback are superb, with direct and pleas-

There is the dark, mysterious effect the Flex gives off

Juan G. Robbin is the Editor of the website

ant lightness. Tactile feel on the materials all over the

due to its darkened security glass and blackened pil-

www.motoringstyle.com. Find other auto reviews on

interior is noticeably improved. Switchgear, controls,

lars, this is in addition to the unique roof colors that

his website.n

The Trinity of Health: An inclusive approach to a healthier, happier and slimmer life.

coffeebreak aware that we must reconnect with both ourselves

24

Put away those over-the-counter diet pills and

how to elevate our consciousness and once we

and with our world in order to truly return to bal-

go back to the basics is the message behind Dr.

have accomplished this, we refocus on our bodies.

ance. To ensure that our bodies, minds, and spirits

Carmen Harra’s latest book The Trinity of Health,

The second part of the book serves as a complete

realign to achieve an equal homeostasis, we must

and what great advice and guidance she gives us!

guide to smart nutrition. It illustrates a fail-proof

exercise not just our physical selves, but the seven

The Trinity of Health is an easy to follow life

method to lose and maintain weight, teaches how

golden principles of totality: find balance and seek

changing guide that goes beyond

to choose wholesome, yet unbelievably satisfying

joy, cultivate awareness, avoid reactivity, treasure

teaching us how to balance our body,

foods, and even offers a seven-day program to

togetherness, return to Mother Nature through real

spirit and mind, it can help us elevate

jumpstart readers on their new path to health.

food and exercise, create good karma every day,

our consciousness and positively

“We have all been taught that good nutrition

change our eating habits and routine

will generate good health; but in the speeding blur

forever. The first part of the book teaches readers

that races through our day to day lives, very few are

latinbiz n third quarter 2008

and embrace responsibility,”-said Harra. More info: www.carmenharra.com


travel In Latin America and the Caribbean, millions of orphaned and abandoned children are living in the street, scared and alone. Blue Ridge Mountains

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee: The perfect family vacation By Shane Eubanks Have you been searching for the perfect place to spend a family vacation where everyone in the family will have a great time? It is often a challenge to find a place that entertains the entire family from ages 3 to 103. Fortunately, there is one such place that is centrally located to most of the eastern United States. Pigeon Forge is nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in East Tennessee and within a day’s drive of most of the East Coast and Midwest. Pigeon Forge is an incredibly unique town filled with Appalachian history and modern entertainment. Children will have a blast at the various attractions that offer go-carts, miniature golf,

Friends of the Orphans supports the Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos network of orphanages, which cares for over 3,500 children in nine countries. You can help us provide children with food, clothing, shelter, health care and an education in a loving family environment. Please contact us today to sponsor a child or make a gift.

laser tag, arcades, and more. The adults will love the variety of theaters showcasing country music, bluegrass, gospel, impersonations, comedy, etc as well as the incredible value in dinner shows where the entire family can eat and be entertained for at least two full hours! Some of the best entertainment for the entire family can be found for free. There are numerous hiking trails, rivers for fishing, nature loops to drive and see all sorts of wildlife, scenic views for

®

Southeast Region 8980 SW 56th Street Miami, FL 33165 305.595.0025 www.friendsoftheorphans.org

amazing pictures, and more. Be sure to stop by the official welcome centers to get maps and information from the locals who know the best places to visit and times to go. If shopping is your thing, then you will absolutely love what Pigeon Forge has to offer. The area has become known as the outlet capital of the United States and is home to numerous chain stores as well as unique shops that cannot be found anywhere else. Whatever your shopping pleasure is, you’re bound to find great bargains on your trip to Pigeon Forge. When it comes to food, Pigeon Forge has a wide variety of options that will appeal to the entire family. If you are not willing to take chances on something new, you will find familiar restaurant chains, but if you’re looking for something unique and delicious, then the choices are great! There are plenty “one-of-a-kind” restaurants in the area that serve some amazing food guaranteed to leave you full and drooling for more once you return home. The best tip is to ask the people that work at the attractions and shops you visit during your first day there; this will give you a great assortment of restaurants to try during your vacation. Finally, you’re going to need a place to sleep! Pigeon Forge has plenty of options from campgrounds all the way up to massive cabins that can accommodate an entire family reunion! Cabins have become an extremely popular lodging choice among visitors as the cabins offer the quiet, rustic feel of staying in the Smoky Mountains along with the conveniences of home, which include: kitchens, laundry rooms, fireplaces, and even game rooms with pool tables, pinball, arcades, and more. Pigeon Forge, Tennessee is the perfect destination for your next family vacation. There simply are no better places to bring the children as well as the great-grandparents where everyone is guar-

Mortgage Planner

anteed to have a great time. There are events throughout the entire year, so don’t worry about which season is the best. Pigeon Forge offers you and your family an amazing experience all year long. Shane Eubanks operates Inside Pigeon Forge and Inside Gatlinburg, TN - websites devoted to

Mortgage Planning Session

sharing reviews, tips, coupons, and information about the towns to help families have the best experience during their vacation. More info: www.insidepigeonforge.com or www.insidegatlinburg.com. third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

25


earthtalk

bizannouncements d expósito & Partners gets “Silver Telly” for McDonald’s Latin Grammy-inspired Snack Wrap TV spots. A Silver Telly, the top distinction from the Telly Awards, fell upon the creative work for McDonald’s Snack-Wrap developed by d expósito &

© Getty Images

Partners to coincide with the celebration of the Latin Grammy 2006 Edition. The agency’s campaign was one of

Major environmental issues for our next president

14,000 entries from

From the Editors of E/The Environmental Magazine

Hispanic, Ethnic and

earthtalk@emagazine.com / www.emagazine.com

General Market sub-

Global warming is unquestionably the most pressing environmental issue facing whoever ends up in the

mitted to the 29th An-

White House in January 2009. Not only does climate change impact-and in most cases exacerbate-other environ-

nual Telly Award. Web

mental problems, it has even wider implications for the economy and society at large. Luckily for all of us, both

site, www.tangustoso.

Barack Obama and John McCain are committed to tackling climate change, although their proposed approaches

com, a playful digital

differ in significant ways.

destination where con-

The non-profit League of Conservation Voters (LCV), America’s leading voice for environmental advocacy

sumers are engaged to

within electoral politics, would prefer to see Obama elected president given his environmental track record and

experience the product through non-traditional

plans for the future. While both candidates favor instituting a mandatory “cap-and-trade” program (whereby the

means such as viewing irreverent webskits, viral

federal government allows polluters to trade for the right to emit a reduced overall amount of greenhouse gases),

videos, events calendars, events photo retrieval,

Obama is for more strident cuts. He would like to see the U.S. reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by some

as well as interacting by playing a sweepstakes

80 percent by 2050, while McCain supports only cutting back by 65 percent. Both candidates have authored

game called AngusMania. “This is barely our

legislation in the Senate designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, although no such bills have come close

third year in business and we feel ‘d_ excite-

to passing.

ment’ of being in this position,” added Jorge

Even though McCain is by far the most forward-thinking of the original Republican presidential contenders

Ulla, partner/chief ideation officer.

on global warming and the need to take action, LCV still gives him poor marks, only a 24 rating (out of 100)

earned a score of 67 in 2007, because he missed four votes due to campaigning (his 2006 score was 100), and

Latina produced film brings Tango to the screen at LA Femme Film Festival. The

has a lifetime LCV rating of 86.

short film, La Milonga, was an official selec-

lifetime and zero for 2007. LCV says that McCain missed all 15 critical environmental votes last year and that he “repeatedly clings to outdated policies and flip-flops on core environmental issues.” By comparison, Obama

One area where environmentalists take issue with McCain is his support for expanding the role of nuclear

tion for LA Femme Film festival. The film stars,

power in cutting fossil fuel use. Obama would rather bolster alternative energy sources like wind and solar power

People en Español’s Cara Nueva, Angie Ruiz,

that do not have the nasty side effect of radioactive waste in need of storage and disposal. (McCain also supports

(Flashbacks of a Fool, Bee Season) who also

the development of new renewables, but not to the extent that Obama is willing to commit to).

produced the film through her production com-

Some of the other hot button environmental issues sure to occupy the next president’s time include: how to

pany Wandering Films. La Milonga is the first

best protect the nation’s water resources and wetlands; whether to allow more drilling for oil and natural gas both

film produced by Wandering Films and was in-

offshore and within Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge; whether to reinstate the Roadless Area Conservation

spired by Ms. Ruiz’s 2007 visit to Buenos Aires

Rule, a Clinton-era law (subsequently overturned by the Bush administration) calling for protection of some 58

where she spent every evening dancing Tango

million acres of public land from logging; how to meet U.S. commitments on existing environmental laws in

in the traditional Tango dance halls. The film is

international trade agreements; and whether to bring back the so-called “polluter pays” part of the government’s

set in 1920’s Buenos Aires and was inspired by

“Superfund” toxic waste clean-up program.

the era of Carlos Gardel and the rise of Tango.

While Obama is clearly the greener candidate on most of these issues, the fact that McCain even takes them

Visit www.angie-ruiz.com to view the trailer.

seriously-and is committed to any greenhouse gas reductions whatsoever-is a plus for environmental advocates

La Milonga will also be screening at the 2008

exasperated by eight years of green naysaying by the Bush administration.n

Miami Short Film Festival November 17-23. www.miamishortfilmfestival.com.

26

latinbiz n third quarter 2008


technology In small companies there is often no need to have a specific IT department to call on in the event of any problems. In this case it is often better to hire multi-skilled

Do You Have Access To Enough IT Staff? By Jane Smith No matter how well a business is run and how efficient its computer system is, employees will always run into problems now and again. Whether it’s a simple computer glitch or a major error, it’s good to know you have the right staff on hand to solve the problem in the shortest amount of time possible. The problem is that you need to know this ahead of time - not when your computers crash and you suddenly realize you don’t have the staff or the resources to cope with it and get things back up and running again.

employees for certain roles, so you have people in place at all times that you can call on to rectify any problems or issues as they arise. Part of their job role in this situation may be to identify possible issues before they arise, and take the necessary steps to prevent them occurring in the first place. Of course the size of a company can have a big effect at the other end of the scale as well. If a company grows quickly and experiences a sustained period of success, resulting in the need to take on more employees in a short period of time, the current IT department may no longer be able to meet the needs of the larger business. In this case it is essential to quickly identify how the department should be expanded, what its new brief should be and how many new staff members are required to meet the needs of the larger business. The key point is to remember that what works now may not work in the future. Your IT staff members play a key role in ensuring the computer infrastructure is able

Not only can this have a detrimental effect on your business, it can also mean

to cope with the growing needs and demands of the company. If these two aspects

that when problems do occur it takes longer for your business to recover. That’s why

don’t match up, the company could be heading for problems it won’t be able to cope

it pays to review your IT infrastructure and your current needs in order to make sure

with.

you are fully prepared and able to take the necessary actions if or when they are ever needed.

Jane Smith shares practical business IT solutions for medium to large sized organisations. More info: www.bmc.com/en_IN

law

Keep a Secret—It’s the Law! By Laura Adams Trade-secret law has become more important as our modern workforce has become more mobile. The law is necessary to protect the owners of proprietary company information. A trade secret is company information you have that’s not readily available to the general public. It’s knowledge you’ve gained about what gives

hibit the misuse of trade secrets, even if you did not sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement. Unauthorized use or disclosure of an employer’s trade secrets is unlawful in most states during and after employment. So, even if you are fired from a job, you can not disclose your former employer’s trade secrets to competitors or to a new employer.

your company a competitive advantage over other businesses within the

If a former employer can prove that an ex-employee’s new job will lead

industry. Anything that makes a company unique or that a competitor would

him or her to rely on their trade secrets, a court can enjoin the employee

find valuable in creating a competitive advantage may be considered a trade

from working for a competitor for a limited period of time. One example is

secret. When changing employers, especially within the same industry, you

the case of a former PepsiCo employee who was privy to confidential mar-

need to give some thought to the trade secrets that you posses.

keting plans for distribution and pricing of one of their drink products, All

A trade secret can take on many different forms such as: customer lists,

Sport. He went to work for Quaker Oaks, who sold Gatorade. A court found

product formulas, operational processes, sales techniques, pricing, and

that the former employee would have to rely on PepsiCo trade secrets and

software. To determine what is or is not a trade secret, the following criteria

prohibited him from working at Quaker Oaks for 6 months.

must be considered: the extent to which the information is known outside the company; the amount of resources spent to create or develop the infor-

The theft of trade secrets is a serious matter that carries the risk of civil as well as criminal penalties.

mation; the ease of duplicating the information; the value of the information

Under the Economic Espionage Act, an individual can be prosecuted

to the business owner and competitors; and how much effort is made within

under federal law with penalties of 15 years in prison and $500,000 in fines

the company to keep the information secret.

and restitution.

Many employers ask employees to sign an agreement called a Non-

Laura Adams is the host of the popular MBA Working Girl Podcast. The

Disclosure Agreement, or NDA, immediately upon hire. The purpose of

content combines brainy business school theory with real-world business prac-

these agreements is to inform workers about what is considered a trade

tice from her career as a business owner, manager, consultant and trainer. Sub-

secret within the business. An NDA specifically restricts the disclosure or

scribe for FREE to this top-rated show and get the useful MBA Essential Tip at

use of trade secrets during and after employment. But most U.S. states pro-

www.mbaworkinggirl.com third quarter 2008 n latinbiz

27


netwo rking Latin business club of America networking events presented by: Deli Lane, South Miami

Plaza Health Network with the Mayor of North Miami Honorable Kevin Burns

Eastern Financial Florida Credit Union, Miramar

Christabelle’s Quarter, Coconut Grove

Our events are also generously sponsored by: latinbiz; Aflac; Mas Solutions; HACE, Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement 28

latinbiz n third quarter 2008


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