Welcome to The Problem Solver, DP Solutions’ monthly newsletter filled with helpful articles and insider tips to help your business run more productively!
We want our newsletter to be full of information that’s useful to you — to help you be a better boss, manager and business professional. And because of that goal, you (unknowingly) push us to excellence every month, as we plan articles for you.
Got feedback? Email us your comments or suggestions. Cheers to a Happy New Year!
Last Night I Was Startled Out Of Bed In A Cold Sweat,
Heart Racing, With Fear Racing Through My Mind…And YOU Were The Reason For My Panic!
Was I having a nightmare? Was I just watching too many reruns of The Twilight Zone? Had I eaten a big meal before bed? No – it simply occurred to me that you might be relying on cheap, online backups for your data!
And if that data was erased, corrupted or destroyed, you might not ever get it back! The thought of that happening scared me half to death!
You see, your business network creates a lot of important data every day, which means you need regular backups to ensure that you always have access to this information. Many cloud storage services offer remote backup for low prices, but the promise of cheap backups is often too good to be true. Instead of getting the reliable storage you need to protect your business data, you may run into frustrating pitfalls. And THAT is what had me up in the middle of the night.
Here are a few nightmares you might run into in real life, if you’re using one of those cheap cloud backups:
1. Data Restrictions
Some cloud services claim to have unlimited storage. However, there’s always a limit to what a server can hold. Most cheap backup services don’t have the space that businesses need. This makes it impossible to secure all of your data. Getting more space incurs extra fees, and this could be a problem for small businesses with tight budgets.
2. Slower Speeds
Running a backup can take a long time when you have a lot of files to copy. A cheap cloud service can’t offer the resources necessary to speed up this process. Many of them put a cap on the amount of bandwidth you get. This could lead to incomplete backups, especially for businesses that need to copy several dozen gigabytes of data every day.
3. Lack of Syncing and Versioning
One benefit of cloud storage and backup is the ability to sync the latest versions of files across all of your company’s devices. This service can be a lifesaver for businesses whose employees do a lot of remote work using smartphones or tablets. However, cheaper backup options don’t usually include syncing. They also don’t back up multiple versions of files. Versioning is necessary in the event that a current file becomes corrupted and an earlier version needs to be recovered.
Although data stored in the cloud can be accessed from anywhere, it’s written to physical servers that belong to the company that handles the backups. All hardware is subject to failure at some point. If this happens, you could lose all the data that you thought was safe. That’s why every backup plan needs to have a fail-safe. You should plan to have at least one storage option in addition to the cloud.
5. Shaky Security
Business data includes sensitive information that requires encryption before being transmitted. This is true no matter what type of backup you use. Not every cheap cloud solution provides this level of security. Anyone can access information sent without initial encryption. This means that customer data and business transactions could be hacked during a routine backup. Data also needs to be encrypted once it’s on the server to prevent intrusion by hackers. Even then, there’s a chance that employees of the cloud service have access to the key that’s meant to provide this protection on the server end.
6. Cloud Alternatives
With all of these potential drawbacks to consider, cheap cloud service isn’t likely to be the best choice for your business backup needs. Fortunately, there are many other options that can be set up onsite to give you control over what happens to your data.
Is your data being backed up correctly? Don’t wait until disaster strikes. Visit www.dpsolutions.com/secure or call us at 410-720-3300 for your FREE Data Security Analysis.
The following three op-ed pieces were excerpted from a blog post at MarkSanborn.com.
Scott McKain – ScottMcKain.com
“Elected political leader as manager” is a dated, misplaced notion. Let’s change our thinking about the jobs of those we elect to significant positions.
I never thought Jack Welch was an expert on nuclear power or broadcasting – even though GE did both while he was CEO.
Yet we seemingly want our President to know everything about every issue. That’s humanly impossible.
The President’s actual role is more like “chairman of the nation” or “chief political officer.” It is to provide leadership by steering us toward consensus on critical issues and making tough decisions on major policy issues.
We’ve reached a point where we actually need two Presidents – better expressed as Chairman and CEO.
The Chairman (President of the US) is elected as our “big-picture” political leader. They then appoint a CEO to be an aggressive, rigorous manager of budgets and performance. Companies separate these positions. Why shouldn’t the government?
Until we become more sensible in our expectations, we’ll have unqualified politicians trying to be executives…business leaders trying to be politicians…and neither delivering the best results for America.
Randy Pennington – PenningtonGroup.com
Every President is an amateur managing a group of professionals when it comes to providing leadership for government agencies. That is not unlike successfully running a large company with multiple products and services.
But “running the government” also involves influencing when you have no authority to mandate compliance, building coalitions among groups with different goals, operating in a state of perpetual scrutiny and understanding how the process of government works.
Republicans hold up Ronald Reagan – an actor and politician – as the standard for great leadership. The Democrats point to Bill Clinton – a career politician. You can’t underestimate the importance of understanding and being competent in how government works.
Larry Winget – LarryWinget.com
When it comes to running the government, I believe that it takes a good combination of business acumen as well as the ability to both understand and use the political machine to get things done.
A businessperson who can’t get things done using the political system and only wants to trash the system and do a work-around is doomed. A politician who doesn’t understand the basic business principles that a CEO has to master to be successful as well as profitable is also doomed.
We either need a politician with business mastery or a businessperson with political mastery. It is going to take a combination of both skill sets to move us forward.
Balancing a budget, spending less than you take in, controlling growth, understanding the competition, defending your establishment against outsiders, pleasing the people who pay the bills and creating value both real and perceived are the roles of a good businessperson. But they should also be the top priorities of a person running the government.
We need a proactive, visionary consensus builder. We don’t need a know-it-all demagogue who believes they are the only one who can have a good idea.
Mark Sanborn, CSP, CPAE, is president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea studio dedicated to developing leaders in business and in life. Mark is an international best-selling author and noted authority on leadership, team-building, customer service and change. Mark is the author of 8 books, including the best seller The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary, which has sold more than 1.6 million copies internationally. Learn more about Mark at www.marksanborn.com.
If you depend on your computer network to run your business, this is one report you DON'T want to overlook!
This report will outline the common mistakes that many small business owners make with their computer network that cost them thousands in lost sales, productivity, and computer repair bills, as well as providing an easy, proven way to reduce or completely eliminate the financial expense and frustration of these oversights.
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Business lunches can wreck a healthy diet plan. Yet there is a way to enjoy them without busting your calorie count. The secret? Enlist your calendar to help you eat out more often without gaining weight. Here’s how: 1) Limit restaurant meals to one or two per week. 2) Plan ahead so you can make reservations at a locally owned restaurant that serves fresh food with little sugar, salt and fat content. 3) On days when you’re not eating out, pack a lunch from home ahead of time. With a little planning, you may literally be able to “have your cake and eat it too”!
Adapted from: //www.inc.com/kevin-daum/5-reasons-to-schedule-morebusiness-lunches.html
Outsourcing can make regular employees feel a bit nervous. To keep things calm at the office, let your team in on the reason for bringing in an outsider. When they understand that their jobs are safe, they can relax and support your position. Tasks that need special skills, such as marketing with social media, are often easier to fill with a freelancer. And, as soon as the job is done, the worker leaves without delay. Mindless jobs like shredding documents are often better outsourced. Your team is then freed up for more productive – and less tedious – work.
Adapted from: www.shredit.com/enus/blog/securing-your-information/ july-2011/outsourcing-shredding-ismore-secure-than-doing-it
Company meetings can fall flat when team members aren’t at ease. It’s tough to break the ice, though, when the only thing that people have in common is their job. Yet when folks find out something of interest in another person, they’ll relax and open up. Here’s a simple game to liven things up at your next meeting: Ask each person to choose a partner, then see if they can find five things they have in common. When you hear them laughing out loud, you’ll know they’ve found someone with the same birthday, with a funny dog story or who went to the same high school… Now you’ve got a team ready to get things done.
Adapted from: http://management.about.com/video/5-Effective-Team-Building-Exercises.htm
Buy right to eat right… The outer rim of a grocery store may be easy to pass by, but that’s where you’ll find the freshest food. In the produce department, fruits and vegetables with the darkest reds, greens, purples, yellows and oranges often contain the most essential nutrients for nourishing your body. The aisles in the middle of the store stock packaged and processed food that’s typically high in salt, fat and sugar. Frozen cases offer prepared meals that appeal because they’re convenient, but they are far from healthy. Stay fit and avoid the stuff in the middle of the store.
Adapted from: /jamesclear.com/simple-diet-ideas