First Business

Business Articles

April 06, 2010

Tips & Techniques for Engaging Customers With Social Media

Many organizations have realized the importance of integrating social media tools into their online customer engagement armamentarium. Among the tools that are being adopted are Twitter Feeds, Blogs, RSS Feeds, Facebook Pages, Myspace Pages, …
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March 30, 2010

Money Managers Coax Tepid Investors Back into the Market

Don't let the stock market's comeback fool you, money managers say there still is a lot of wealth sitting on the sidelines due to a crisis of confidence in institutions like Wall Street and especially Congress. The stock market hit a low of just …
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March 29, 2010

SBA Recovery Lending Extended Through April 30

President Barack Obama signed on Friday legislation extending through April the U.S. Small Business Administrations ability to provide enhancements in its two largest small business loan programs. The enhancements, first made available under the …
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March 16, 2010

Lean and Green

The manufacturing industry has never had a glamorous public image, and to most people, it is not considered a green business category.Historically, many large manufacturing operations have been large producers of pollutants sending carbon dioxide, …
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March 11, 2010

Business inventory levels are kept low

Businesses trimmed inventories at the wholesale level again in January even though sales rose for a 10th consecutive month. The dip in inventories underscored that businesses remain cautious about restocking their depleted shelves. Read more at …
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March 10, 2010

Business Survey Shows Better Hiring Outlook

The outlook for hiring in the Madison area looks more promising for jobseekers, according to a recent survey of businesses.Many businesses have been cutting back to shore up their bottom line, but on Wednesday a Manpower survey asking businesses …
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March 05, 2010

Management: Thank your employees

During the 18th century, British sailors were rewarded with an extra ration of rum after a successful voyage. Now that your employee and management teams have successfully navigated the turbulent waters of the economic tsunami, how will you reward …
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February 19, 2010

Networking: Open your mind to social media

Are you tweeting, posting, linking in or blogging yet? If not, youre missing out on one of the most useful and inexpensive tools for expanding your business.These (and other) social networks are having a more powerful impact for small business …
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December 01, 2009

80/20 — The Big Picture for Great Big Pictures

Alice Torti knows that painful decisions are associated with it, but she would recommend the 80:20 principle to almost anyone. Torti, the COO of Great Big Pictures, a Madison printer that makes in-store graphics for large retailers, has not only …
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June 23, 2009

Reorganizations That Last

Four out of five organizations have gone through some type of redesign initiative over the past 12 months. This may not be big news since during the recession, many companies were quick to undertake reorganizations in order to reduce costs, improve …
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June 19, 2009

The Customer Satisfaction Survey Snag

Customer satisfaction has been a major business buzz phrase for more than a decade. In his 2001 book, The Loyalty Effect, Fred Reichheld claimed that customer loyalty is a dominant determinant of success in business. He purported, for example, that …
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January 12, 2009

Managers Must be Decisive in Handling Problems

Good managers don't clean up messes caused by their staffs. They prevent messes from happening in the first place.Division head Carl finally had to fix the problems in a department run by senior manager Brenda. He transferred one supervisor and …
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