Friday, April 23, 2010

The Apostrophe Continues to Baffle

Now I wouldn’t have thought it to be so difficult, but clearly many people don’t know where to put an apostrophe. Oh sure, I make mistakes myself when I'm flying through some of my own writing, but that's why you hire an editor.

But still, with all the eyes that must have looked at these items, the mistakes abound.

No Drink’s Allowed (sheesh)

The Most Versatile Crossover In It’s Class (ouch)

A rattlesnakes’ bite is poisonous.(Hmmm, how about a rattlesnake's bite? You know, singular, since you said it was A rattlesnake and not a BUNCH of rattlesnakes.)

So where DOES this pesky mark go? There are some pretty simple rules for apostrophe usage:

1. To show a contraction: The cat’s out of the bag.
2. To show possession: The cat’s feet are out of the bag.
3. To avoid confusion when talking about the plural of lower case letters such as there are two s’s in Mississippi.

You use an apostrophe after the plural s as shown by the Chicago Manual of Style below:

• a consumers’ group
• taxpayers’ associations
• children’s rights
• the women’s team
• a boys’ club

And Chicago Manual of Style dispenses with the apostrophe only in proper names:

• Publishers Weekly
• Diners Club
• Department of Veterans Affairs
• a housewares sale

 Hope that clears it up a bit. 

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Greetings from the Crocker Art Museum

I can't believe one year could have so many changes in it. I decided to pursue my love of museums and retail management and voila! I'm now at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, California. What a gorgeous and important museum. (Click the title to follow the link, and check it out for yourself!)

A huge expansion is nearing its final phase. The Museum will move into a new wing which will triple the exhibition space and more than double the size of the Museum Store. It's all very exciting. (Need I mention the amount of work that goes into opening a new store?)

Also exciting is the opportunity to affect change in a retail environment again. I love working in the nonprofit sector and doing something that contributes the the Museum's ability to move forward is rewarding work. So in this blog I hope to talk more about retail and what's happening in the retail world that will impact all of us retail folks.

I look forward to hearing from you as I build this store.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Over 1 Billion Internet Users!

Yikes! Check out this article from -Small Business Labs. There are now over 1 billion internet users.

So how much is one billion? I am a visual person and can NOT visualize a billion of anything. So when I came across the following stats from our local newspaper editor, I just had to share:

• A billion seconds ago it was 1959.
• A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive.
• A billion hours ago our ancestors were living in the Stone Age.
• A billion days ago nobody walked the Earth on two feet.

A Louisiana senator is hoping the president's package includes $250 billion to rebuild New Orleans. Which amounts to $516,000 for every man, woman and child in New Orleans, or $2 million for every family of four. Wow. Does that help put one billion into perspective.

Social Networking and Guy Kawasaki's Blog

I'm not a big blogger. YET. But social networking is growing so fast, that all of us who are growing our businesses need to be doing it. Have a Facebook page? Are you Tweeting? Of COURSE you're LinkedIn. Right?

Check out the article and let me know if it changes how you use social networking.
(Click on the header to link to the article.)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A super networking short video from Bob Bly

For those of you who don't know how to take advantage of their networking opportunities. Thanks Bob!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Cut Back on That Customer Service?

Only if it still pays! Don't try this without researching your customer base.

This fascinating article on customer service offers research on how much service may or may not have a return on investment. It seems there is a 'delight point' that just might not be worth the extra money to provide, but it does depend on the type of business.

"Consider service levels, specifically average time-to-answer, which is one of the most common metrics used in call centers. Service levels—often based on regulation or historical precedent—are set by call-center managers and then used to calculate staffing requirements. But service levels are challenging to maintain and costly to improve: raising them by 10 percent requires much more than a 10 percent increase in staff."

Much of this study is based on wait times, such as in call centers. Take the link to read more. Perhaps not all customer service is critical to business. Certainly there's a fine line. How long should YOUR customers wait? Are you willing to add staff to improve service, or do you think it's so close the added staff/$$$ won't make a difference?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Which Wolf Will You Feed?

Two Wolves

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside all people. He said, 'My son, the battle is between two 'wolves' inside us all.

One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.'

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: 'Which wolf wins?'

The old Cherokee simply replied, 'The one you feed.'

Why did I add that here today? Because today, as we read more about the election results, and the economy and the war in Iraq we are going to be torn about where to put our attention.

Let's keep our attention where it will do the most good. "Attend" to your work, family, friends and home. Make those areas grow with your attention. Feed the wolf you want to keep in your life.