Five Advantages of Job Benefits Over Salary

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When an employer makes you an offer while you are hunting for a job, would you place more value on benefits over salary or would it be the other way around? According to a 2015 employment confidence survey, nearly four in five (79%) of employees would prefer new or additional benefits to a pay increase.

Job benefits, also known as perks, are privileges granted to employees in addition to their salaries and benefits. These perks could be retirement benefits, medical insurance, performance bonus, tuition reimbursement, flexible work schedule, paid sick leave, vacation and annual leave as well as office perks like free breakfast and lunch, child care assistance, parental leave and other employee development perks.

Your salary basically refers to a fixed regular payment, typically paid on a monthly basis but is often expressed as an annual sum. Salaries are paid by an employer to an employee, especially a professional or white-collar worker. In Nigeria, salaries are predominantly paid on a monthly basis and are usually fixed as specified and agreed upon by your contract.

If you are building a career and not taking your next job for just ‘getting the job sake,’ it’s important you pay attention to the benefits in your offer letter just as much as the basic salary if not more.

Here are some of the benefits that come with placing more value on job benefits over salary.

1. Great Benefits Over Salary Helps You SaveBenefits_vs_Salary_-_Encourages_Savings

Life is usually filled with uncertainties and your job benefits can help curtail unnecessary or unforeseen expenses. Your job benefits can help you save money on medical bills mid-month if you get ill, especially when your salary has not been paid.

It also reduces the financial burden of expenses for your vacation as well as your certifications and trainings, especially in a situation where your employer offers you tuition reimbursements. Good job benefits reduce the financial strain on both your foreseen and unforeseen expenses.

2. Career Developmentbenefits over salary

When you have good job benefits as opposed to your salary, it provides a reliable support system for your career and personal development, especially when your salary cannot provide sufficient support.

If your employer provides adequate support for professional certifications and trainings, this would go a long way in helping attain your career goals, especially where it concerns career training and personal development.

3. Boosts Your Loyaltybenefits over salary

Did you know that job mobility in Nigeria is high and continues to soar? According to the report on the Best 100 Companies To Work For in Nigeria 2018, only 24% of respondents are willing to stay at their present employment. Having good job benefits and perks will psychologically increase your loyalty to the company.

4. Improves Your Drive and Motivationbenefits over salary

Performance-based incentives are direct triggers to motivate you towards continuously achieving positive results and meeting set targets. Such incentives would improve your drive for results and ensure that you do not rest on your oars. These incentives can come in the form of cash and non-cash rewards or awards.

5. Fuels the Spirit of Innovationbenefits over salary

For any organisation, creativity is an essential ingredient especially for a company that is focused on growth, moving forward and continued relevance. These are the qualities you should look out for before you agree to an offer from a company. Great brands are known to be innovative and this innovation stretches into every facet of the company including benefits that you receive as an employee.

When you receive good benefits like flexible working hours, working from home in some cases, having team bonding sessions with your colleagues as well as your peers in other establishments, you will find yourself embracing the culture of innovation and working smart.

An example of a good benefit is an annual international training or transfer programme by companies that allow employees expand their horizon through international exposure and an opportunity to improve your skill set.

Final Thoughts on Placing Job Benefits Over Salary

In conclusion, whatever your reasons might be, there several advantages of work benefits over salary. The next time, a job offer comes your way, pay attention to the benefits that your potential employer has rolled out. Feel free to ask if it isn’t mentioned during the interview. At the end of the day, these benefits and work perks eventually go a long way in determining how you apportion your salary to your professional advancement and other things that matter to you.

CREDITS: This work was written by Princewill Akuma and was first published on http://www.jobberman.com

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12 Ways Passion For Work Helps Your Career

passion for work

Your passion for work can position you to achieve your career your goals quicker and not having it would make your career journey less fulfilling. No wonder the great Nelson Mandela said: “there is no passion to be found playing small-in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”

Passion for work is the intense enthusiasm and excitement for what you do. It can be the difference between doing it and getting done well. Being excited about your Monday’s the way many people are only thrilled about Fridays, it can be the difference between enjoying your job and struggling it.

Whether you come to it by the love of what you do or currently doing what you love, the opportunities it presents you or just a decision to be passionate. One certain thing is that passion for work makes a world of difference for your career and productivity.

The following are some of the many things your passion for work can help you achieve.

1. Passion For Work Sets Your Attitude Straight

passion for workIt is usually said that what we reap, is what we have sown. Your passion for work would set your attitude at work as well as your attitude to work. This helps you align yourself with work, career goals regardless of the challenges.

A straight attitude would make you see the wins that lie beyond the challenges to be surmounted.

2. Sets You Apart and Defines Your Path

Passion for work will set you apart and aflame with an intense pursuit of your KPIs and goals. Struggling most times on a job can be linked to no definiteness of purpose. Passion sets you on a better path to building a career rather than being at a job.

Your career moves and motivation in the short term can always be linked to your bigger picture for the long term. Every job you take is a strategic move towards that path.

If you look within your organisation, identifying people with who have a burning passion for what they do for the organisation is usually not difficult. This also helps management recognise those who can hold leadership positions and grow within the organisation’s ranks with the right training.

3. Intensifies Your Personal Development

Getting the job done is largely dependent on your skills-set. The more developed they are, the more you are likely to get the job done. Your passion for work will spur you to seek personal development and training opportunities to enhance your skills which positively impacts performance and results.

4. Feeds Your Creativity and Innovative Spirit

passion for workWhen you are passionate about the job that you do for a company, you are bound to have loads of happy and pleasing experiences. The more passionate you are about your job, the more creative and innovative it drives you to become.

You will come up with more interesting ideas and ways to get your job done. Nothing kills creativity and innovation faster than doing a job you consider dull, boring and uninteresting. This is very crucial for career growth.

5. A Spike in Productivity

A genuine passion for what you do at work will spur you to be more productive then if you were just doing the job to earn a living and nothing more. Passion for work spurs you to do more at all times and it shouldn’t come as a surprise if this has a positive impact on your productivity.

The more productive you are at work, the more it will impact your career development and career growth.

6. You Voluntarily Put in Extra Hours

Most workers will only put in extra hours at their jobs for two reasons – The first is when they have been threatened with sanctions by a manager. The second reason is when they have a natural passion for work. For the second category of workers, you find them putting in extra hours because they are passionate about something about their job. It could be the job itself or it might even be the office design that fascinates them.

Being passionate about your work does not make you see the extra hours you put in at work as a burden of any kind and this is because you naturally find your work enjoyable.

Without passion for your work, every extra minute you spend at work is something you silently considered a prolongation of your misery. This doesn’t mean you have to work extra hours all the time but whenever duty calls, you attend to it with a smile on your face.

7. You Find Joy in What You Are Doing

The importance of this cannot be overstated. If you do not want to be in a job that constantly makes you feel that you are wasting your life away, then it is important that you have a passion for that job.

Don’t lie to yourself. The passion is either there or it isn’t. If the passion is there, you will be happy and excited to do your job and experience true joy.

8. You Will Cease Disliking Mondays

passion for workIf you do not genuinely love your job, getting off your bed on a Monday morning to go to work will always leave a frown on your face and a deep-seated reluctance to go to work in your heart.

Mondays won’t be so gloomy if you have a true passion for work. Don’t be one of those whose social media updates and stories are plagued by memes and notes of how they wish they could break up with Monday and similar messages that leave a sour touch on their Mondays.

9. Overcoming Obstacles in the Workplace Becomes Easier

1200x630_Overcoming_Obstacles_Not many things are as depressing as battling an obstacle at a job that you have no passion whatsoever for. The workplace is bound to throw up challenges from time to time and the more passionate about your job, the easier it will be to face and overcome these challenges.

Your passion for your work has the capacity to accelerate your abilities and the mindset you need to accept and win over all obstacles with creative solutions.

10. Putting in Extra Effort

There might be days when your job requires that you make some form of sacrifice. For instance, it might mean that you attend an official event outside your city/state of residence to lend a helping hand. If there is no real passion for your job, this sacrifice will most likely leave you unhappy and make you feel used.

The reverse is the case when you are passionate about your job and what you do. You take up those extra responsibilities with a pinch of salt. Your co-workers will see you as a reliable pillar they can always lean on when they need that extra shot of motivation or inspiration.

11. Your Positive Energy Becomes Infectious

passion for workYour passion for your job can easily rub off on some of your colleagues especially new employees who are still trying to find their feet and observing the spirit in the workplace.

The mood at work is not completely reliant on having a beautiful office or having coloured walls and plants. The mood in the workplace can be transformed by the level of passion shown by you and other employees who work in it.

12. You Feel Less Stressed

Passion takes a chunk of what would have otherwise constituted stress in the course of doing your job. When you do a job that you like, your mind and body leave you with a feeling of being pleased and happy.

The day does not end with a feeling of finally getting out of prison like some experience. Rather, you feel happy and this makes you feel less stressed.

In conclusion, passion for work is rewarding for your career. If you currently not passionate about what you do, this might be a good time to reflect on what changes you need to make.

 

CREDITS: This work was written by Princewill Akuma and was first published on http://www.jobberman.com

Choosing The Right Online Marketplace For Your Business

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Once you decide that you want to sell online, the first question that you have to answer is where. There are a lot of options. You can either go for one or more of the innumerable sales channels that make up the online retail system, or fly solo and open up your own online store which will cost you more money.

There are a handful of online marketplaces out there. But a particular one that stands out is Jumia .What does Jumia as a marketplace offer you?
1). Jumia lets you create product catalogues
2). Jumia provides you with a customer base
3). Jumia acts as a middleman during the transaction
4). Jumia assists you with the logistics part of the process.

In return for this service, the online marketplace takes a certain percentage commission from each sale. You also have to adhere to the rules and guidelines, and they have the power to penalise you if you don’t. Essentially, the store might be yours, but it’s their mall. Let us look at the prerequisites for choosing an online marketplace.

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How to Choose Where to Sell Online

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Analyse your product

If you are just a retailer, it is advisable you list your products on an online store, especially in popular product categories like phones, electronics and apparel. These are high volume markets, with a massive demand and a supply that just barely matches it. Subscribe to a marketplace which is popular for selling products in your category.

Logistics support

Logistics is very key to an online marketplace. In recognition of this and to provide sterling and smooth order delivery, Jumia introduced Jumia Services. Some of the services offered by Jumia Services include receiving vendor drop-off packages and collection of packages at the vendor location, consignment storage and order processing from the dedicated warehouse, order processing for e-commerce vendors and delivery to the buyer’s home, office or its network of pickup stations among others. If a particular sales channel is inept in providing logistical assistance around the area where your warehouses are situated, you will be in a tight spot.

Marketplace popularity

eCommerce players such as Amazon, Walmart and locally in Nigeria, Jumia are the heavy weights in today’s online retail market. The top marketplaces are the consumers’ first choice when it comes to shopping online. Subscribing to one or more of them will provide you access to a huge chunk of customer base.

Competition

The other side of the coin is the immense competition that one finds on these huge online marketplaces. There are multiple sellers jostling together for the same product, differentiated only by little things like product descriptions, photographs and seller ratings. It sure is a tough market.

Subscription cost

Different marketplaces have different subscription costs and commission plans. In return, they also offer different essential and optional services. It is better to shortlist a few channels and then carefully go through their specific plans to choose the ones that you want to go for.

Ten Things You Should Never Say at Work

 

things not to say at work

There are several things you should not say at work because saying them can put you in a situation where your colleagues and the management suddenly question your professionalism, decency and integrity. It is okay to be friendly and playful with your colleagues but you should avoid saying things that might easily come across as offensive. Such things have a way of putting a question mark on your professionalism.

You don’t necessarily have to use the ‘F-word.’ Below are some of the things you should refrain from saying at work.

I Assumed That…

There is usually no place for assumption in the workplace; especially when it led to a mistake. Rather than assume, you should confirm and carry out tests. Do not be in a haste to implement or carry out any task. Instead of saying: “I assumed that…” you should use a constructive like: “My understanding was…” This ensures you are communicating a lack of clarity.

Not My Problem…

If you say that the responsibility for a particular task resides with another co-worker and go as far as passing blames, it bears a negative connotation of not being a team player. This is even worse if the issue involved directly affects your team or department. As a responsible employee, you need to be genuinely involved in any problem your organisation is facing. Strive to be a team player at all times.

Weak People Take Sick Leave…

Being a troll, bully or one who enjoys mocking others is unethical in the workplace. If you are sick and can still carry out your tasks rather than take required rests to recuperate and be at an optimal performance, that is your choice. Never resort to using your personal choices or preferences to troll others. This is completely unacceptable.

Makes No Sense…

This statement does two things – It makes you sound arrogant and it makes the person you say it to look unintelligent. It does not matter if you can back up the point you are trying to emphasise. You must always remember that something that does not make sense to you might make a ton of sense to others in the workplace.

Instead of telling your co-worker that what he/she said does not make sense, consider replacing it with a more constructive line like this: “I do not understand this.” Such a statement shows that you seek more clarity to what the person has said.

You’re Wrong…

In the workplace, strategies and ideologies can always differ but how you communicate it would end up deciding whether they are agreed on or not. Rather than saying: “You are wrong,” how about replacing it with “I disagree and here’s why…”

There’s Nothing I Can Do…

Tasks and projects can sometimes leave you stuck. If you ever find yourself in such a situation, one of the things you should never say is: “There is nothing I can do.” Such a line simply communicates that you lack initiative, creativity and the ability to navigate emergencies. These are not the qualities of a good team player or leader. Rather than saying “there is nothing I can do,” you should say, “I am a bit stuck.” What this communicates is the fact that you need some assistance, more time or fresh ideas to get ahead.

We Always Do It Like This…

Being scared of change is very common in most work environments. This becomes manifest when you say, “We always do it like this…” The fact that an idea or strategy currently works does not mean it cannot be optimised for even better results.

Instead of saying, “We always do it like this,” why not go for a more constructive line like, “Your approach is different. Can you share why it is better?”

You Should Have or Why Didn’t You…

Empathy will always get you farther than blaming your coworkers or finding faults in their choices. Instead of repeatedly blaming them, use a constructive line like, “I recommend you…” Such a line dwells less on blaming or tearing your colleague down; even when they have made a mistake.

I May Be Wrong But…

This statement presents whatever you say after it as not being factual and lacking confidence. When it is an idea, what comes across is that you are suggesting something you do not want to be held accountable for if it flops after implementation. Instead of saying, “I may be wrong but,” you should rather say, “Here’s my idea/thinking…”

I’m Sorry But…

Most things said after this phrase usually ends up being an excuse to defend your actions or to exonerate yourself. It often comes across as a way to brush off your mistakes and move away from it. If you have to apologise for something you said or did to your co-worker, just apologise without trying to justify your action.

I Haven’t Had Time

Time management is an important workplace skill and an absence of it could have you considered as not taking ownership of your tasks. Saying you have not had time to work on something strongly suggests that you need to be micromanaged to be able to get your work done. You should cultivate the habit of communicating your progress. Instead of saying, “I have not had time,” you should say, “I will be able to get this done by…”

Conclusion on Things Not To Say At Work

There are so many things you should not say at work. We have shared some of the common ones in order to stimulate you into finding ways to communicate your thoughts and ideas to your colleagues better.

Can you think of more things that employees should not say at work that we can add to this list? If you can, kindly share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.

 

CREDITS: This work was written by Princewill Akuma and was first published on http://www.jobberman.com

@GdgEnugu Set to Hold in Enugu

Enugu, will tomorrow 23rd November, play host to Developers and entrepreneurs from within and outside Nigeria, as GDG-Enugu 2018 DevFest South-East conference holds at the International Conference Center, Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Enugu.

The two-day event aimed at learning and sharing experiences about Android, Chrome, Cloud, Machine Learning and more technologies event, will bring together about 1200 participants – students, software developers, startups, entrepreneurs, tech enthusiasts, hobbyists, leaders in the ICT space from other parts of Nigeria and members of other Google Development Groups around South East Nigeria – Aba, Awka, Enugu, Njikoka, Oko and Umuahia.

The gathering offers a marketplace for young, smart and creative youth to come together to share ideas on how technology can be used to create a society that is equitable progressive and peaceful.

Attendees will gain insight into latest Google tools and futuristic innovations by Google, network with tech experts in Africa during the event.

They will have the opportunity to pitch their product to potential investors who are ready to offer supports to winners.

Google Devfests, the biggest community driven conference run by group of developers who share a passion for Google’s developer technology, are large, community-run software developers events that offer speaker sessions across multiple product areas, keynotes, hackathons, codelabs, product pitches in partnership with Google Incorporated.

Register to secure your seat here: https://bit.ly/devfestse

 

“We are poised to spreading good shoes and better vibes from Enugu to all corners of the Globe” – @Genius_Walker

Nwatu Amobichim, popularly known by his brand name, Genius Walker, is a creative/Fine artist (painting)  and  a professional cobbler. He was trained in the art of shoe-making in Lagos, before acquiring further experience in leather crafts in Ghana. Presently, he runs a Shoe-making/maintenance brand based in Enugu.

Since 2015 when this brand started, Amobichim has strived to simplify your day, beautify your environment, and make you and those around you smile through your superlative choice in footwear. Through his simple formula of innovation, originality, and the key ingredient —durability — he is poised to spreading good shoes and better vibes from Enugu to all corners of the globe.

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ABOUT GENIUS WALKER

Genius Walker is a creative bespoke shoe-making/repair brand based in Enugu, Nigeria.

We offer the most fashionable footwear for both male, female and children that rival top brands. We offer trainings too.

MOTIVATION

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For the love of shoes and fashion (laughs)…well, it has always been my passion to create something and fill a need.

 I realized that when you talk about HANDMADE SHOES here in Enugu, people only think of either Aba or lagos. Even when I wanted to learn the craft after school in 2014, the only option I had was the same Aba  or Lagos, because no doubt, Enugu was no where near what I wanted that moment.
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So, as a creative, I decided to extend my craftsmanship to fashion. Hence, the GENIUS WALKER brand.

HOW I STARTED

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I started in 2015 in Enugu. My first workshop was actually my room back then…. my room bro!
From April 2016 we started to organize trainings in Enugu,  both private and general classes. We’ve been able to train over 50 persons in this art of shoe-making (15 persons, including 5 females are presently practicing and active in the business) we’ve also been able to build and sustain numerous regular clients/customers including schools in and outside Enugu.
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We also have SAVE OUR TEENS PROJECT, a project targeted to reach out to more people especially the teenagers in developing themselves through skill acquisition which we are working seriously to make bigger very soon.

CHALLENGES

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After struggling to convince people that we can give them what they really need here, with good quality and finishing, another obstacle is funding.

We need more machines to follow up with the trends and efficiently and effectively deliver.

HOW I USE SOCIAL MEDIA TO BOOST MY BUSINESS

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I always tell people that social media is my biggest office. Since I started from home, the easiest way to push what I do out there is through social media.  And of course, it has helped me reach out to more clients and easily tell people what I do. It also helps me to improve through learning from what other related brands are doing.
It might interest you to know that most of my clients in and outside Enugu reached out through social media.

ADVICE FOR STARTUPS

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Starting up has its numerous challenges. Just try to maintain consistency and build trust. And forget not to get yourself ready for that massive breakthrough by working on improving from time to time.

Don’t be ashamed to learn and unlearn. Like OLOYE AKIN ALABI will always say “Don’t sell what you like, sell what people will want to buy”.
YOU CAN CONTACT GENIUS WALKER ON:
Phone: 07065474475
Facebook: GENIUS WALKER
Twitter: @genius_walker

How Fintechs Are Disrupting the Nigerian Banking Industry

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The Nigerian financial sector has significantly grown in leaps and bounds; thanks largely to technology. Currently, the services of banks have been automated. Customers are no longer required to visit their brick and mortar branches to perform any transaction.

With their smartphones, they can process local and international transactions. These are exciting times for the Nigerian banking sector as the long hours spent at the bank has been greatly reduced.

It has even gotten more interesting since the entry of fintechs (financial technology) into the banking game in Nigeria.

As a result of technology, fintech platforms are disrupting the way banking business is done, that it now seems like the banks are playing catch-up.

Fintech, according to Investopedia “is used to describe new technologies that seek to improve and automate the delivery and use of financial services. At its core, fintech is utilized to help companies, business owners and consumers better manage their financial operations, processes and lives by utilising specialised software and algorithms that are used on computers and, increasingly, smartphones.”

Although Nigerian banks are exploring and exploiting fintechs to improve their services, they are not taking advantage of it as quickly as the private firms whose services are entirely online.

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Key Services Offered by Fintechs

The edge that fintechs have over the banks are in the services they both offer. Many Nigerians and businesses are trooping to fintechs because of the flexibility of their services. This does not necessarily mean that they have abandoned the banks.

There are some key services that make fintechs stand out or unique. They include:
1. eCommerce payment: online retailers can now seamlessly pay for their orders, thanks to the payment gateway service offered by fintechs. To make payment easy for its millions of customers, Jumia, Nigeria’s no 1 shopping destination launched Jumia Pay. This has enabled every Jumia customer to pay for transactions across the Jumia ecosystem (flight, hotels, food, production services among others. It is secure, flexible and offers seamless checkout experience. And you will even get 5% off for using Jumia Pay.

2. Loans: When it comes to loans, the fintechs are far ahead of banks. Without a collateral, you can apply for a loan and receive it within 24 and 48 hours. They also have a flexible payment plan. As an entrepreneur, you may need a loan to shore up your business, you can apply for Jumia loan and you can go and sleep because the repayment plan is the best in the Nigerian fintech world.

3. They also provide mobile money transfer and Unstructured Supplementary Service Data Services (USSDs).

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Collaboration or Competition?

The no love lost relationship between Fintechs and Banks can seemingly be compared with that of traditional media and internet (social media).

Many of the traditional media in Nigeria have evolved and now have an online version of their publication as well as social media accounts. This has ensured that they remain relevant and they are not entirely overshadowed by the online news media.

In fact, some of them have moved their entire publication online. And it is working for them. Hence, they do not see social media or the internet has a competition. Rather, they see it as a tool to enhance their services.

This is exactly what banks need to do. There is no competition between fintechs and banks. Fintechs are only utilising the tech machinery available to them faster than the banks. There is nothing wrong with a bank owning payment gateway as long as they get Central Bank of Nigeria’s approval.

Even though they are already collaborating, it needs to be taken a notch higher. For example, the fintechs still need banks to keep all payments made using the payment gateway and of course banks will charge interest for keeping the money. Therefore, it is better for them to collaborate rather than compete.

Collaboration is also important in fighting the challenges facing the banking industry. The foremost challenge among others is fraud. The CBN recently reported that there were 20,768 reported cases of fraud and forgery (attempted and successful), valued at N19.77bn in the review period, compared with 16,762 cases, involving N5.52bn and $ 0.12m in the corresponding period of 2017. It is not gainsaying that fintechs are disrupting the Nigerian banking industry. Regardless they need to work together and collaborate to take the industry to the next level.

Six Work Distractions That Affect Your Productivity

 

work distractions

Your level of productivity at work can be determined by the kind of distractions you have and how you respond to them. A distraction is anything that takes you away from what you are supposed to be doing. These things can be external or internal influences that impact your ability to attain your deliverables and set targets.

Most times, we don’t even take note of these little things. Imagine working on a task and right in the middle of that task, you receive an invitation to an e-meeting. You can either accept it and it disrupts the task you were working on or you can reschedule. Which would you choose? Let us see what these work distractions are and how you can manage them.

1.Smartphones

A blessing, as well as a curse – Smartphones being non-existent in our daily lives, would impact us negatively in several ways. The blessings they come with also can mean you are less productive and a general way to manage this is to shut off your notifications, ignore the lights when they flash because the truth is that these messages can always wait.

You can also research apps that block social media from your device during your work hours and stick to using them only during breaks. This takes a lot of discipline but you can do it.

2. Fatigue

Fatigue would leave you unfocused, tired and sleepy, which renders you unable to perform at your best. This arises from working overtime, keeping late nights, sleeping less or other activities that lead to overstretching yourself physically and mentally.

Endeavour to rest, sleep, exercise and reduce your overtime at work. Research shows that employees who work over 55 hours per week have their productivity diminish in the long run.

3. Noise

Noise as a workplace distraction might be within the confines of your office or remote work location. You can mentally block off the noise but it is more efficient to listen to non-lyrical music. You can listen to white noise or classical piano compositions; they have a calming effect and can help you focus better.

4. Clutter and Multitasking

Having your office space cluttered can be distracting and also brands you as a disorganised person. Be keen on keeping an arranged desk and office space, focus your energy on tasks according to how they have been prioritised and avoid multitasking.

Being involved in too many tasks at the same time usually leads to a situation where you might not complete any of the tasks you originally set out to accomplish.

5. Meetings Are Work Distractions

Have you ever been invited for a meeting and you left it wondering, isn’t this decision something that your team could have arrived at via an email? Yes, they are important obligations but most times, you can politely decline attending or asking they be moved to another time if the impact on your productivity negatively.

Don’t attend meetings just for the sake of it. If they do not fit into your schedule, politely ask for them to be rescheduled.

6. Office Chit-Chat

Those little conversations with your coworkers, when not controlled, can affect you negatively. Keep your office chit-chat low. These could also come from in-office communication apps like Hangouts, Slack and Skype to name a few.

Final Thoughts on Work Distractions

How work distractions affect you will largely depend on how you manage yourself. There will always be distractions but you can perform at an optimal level where your tasks and career don’t suffer for it.

What work distractions currently affect you and how do you handle them?

eCommerce Ecosystem Can Guarantee Sustainable Business Growth

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eCommerce can broadly be defined as the buying and selling of goods and services electronically. eCommerce continues to grow and many have suggested that online retailing is contributing to the slow demise of traditional brick and mortar retailing.

By extension, an eCommerce ecosystem is a network of interconnected systems or services that make up an eCommerce business. In other words, the eCommerce firm does not only focus on offering one particular service but a network of services.

Since eCommerce became a popular trend all over the world, a good number of businesses have scaled their services in order to reach more customers and keep them within their ecosystem. This has somewhat ensured that a business is not entirely dependent on one particular product even though it is thriving.

Over the years, the eCommerce company has built one integrated, inter-connected ecosystem that captures most of the simple day to day needs that people could do on the same platform rather than multiple platforms.

This model has really helped in scaling the business, building one brand across the continent and building the same experience for consumers across the continent.

If you have followed Jumia over the years, it kicked off its business in Nigeria as a marketplace where you can shop. However, today it has grown that you can shop for everything you want on Jumia without visiting other platforms.

Rather than just focusing on shopping, Jumia included the other things people would normally do, including ordering food, booking flights and hotels. This has enabled Jumia to build a sustainable business through the years.

Indeed, Jumia has proven that the eCommerce ecosystem is working. Regardless, some businesses are yet to embrace the eCommerce ecosystem even though they have the capability to do so.

Expectedly, there are so many challenges eCommerce ecosystem poses, but the benefits far outweigh these shortcomings.

Internationally, companies like Amazon, Alibaba, Google, Microsoft and Apple among others have also grown and have been able to meet their profit target thanks to being an eCommerce ecosystem.

Benefits of an eCommerce Ecosystem

One of the benefits of an eCommerce ecosystem is that your business won’t struggle nor will your business liquidate or be bought over. This is as a result of not being over-dependent on a particular product or service. The dependency on one product or service has led to quite a lot of companies in a country like Nigeria to fold up

Another advantage of the eCommerce ecosystem is that it guarantees long-term business growth. An average business has a lot of responsibilities. Responsibility to the government, employees, suppliers, vendors among others. Sometimes a one-product offering won’t let you meet these responsibilities. However, since you have different products, you have different streams of revenue. In the long run, you will achieve growth and of course, be able to meet your business responsibilities.

Finally, you will win the loyalty of your customers because when they think about buying or booking anything online, it is your brand that pops into their head.

Five Reasons Your Customers Are Running To Your Competitors

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If everyone agree that twenty friends won’t play for twenty years, nobody said nineteen of them wouldn’t?

This same premise applies to your pool of customers. While a few of them will leave you due to occurrences beyond your control which include relocation and passing away, a lot more will abandon you for your competitors. This of course can be prevented or at best be mitigated.

Here are five reasons why your customers might be leaving you for your competitors, (shifting you closer to the edge in the process) and possible ways to make them stay.

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1. You aren’t Innovative

Think about new ways to improve upon what you already have. This applies to (but not restricted to) your product(s) and mode of operation. you can take a cue from competitors and even industry leaders.

Another means of executing this is getting your customers involved in the process as that’d make them have a sense of belonging in your business.

A simple twitter poll, google form or even a direct meeting with few selected of customers (seeking their opinions) can help you achieve this.

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2. You Hired Wrongly

Aside the skills and technical know-how which many business owners are always on the look out for when recruiting, crucial traits like the underlisted are often overlooked, causing a subtle demise of their businesses.

Emotional intelligence: customers posses different temperaments, backgrounds and also an unequal level of understanding. it therefore takes an emotionally intelligent mind to deal with each accordingly, especially during situations when these customers are either indecisive or angry.

Good manners: this shouldn’t be overstated as it’s a crucial part of the hiring process. A 30 minutes conversation (if well utilized) can unmask an ill mannered folk, making it possible for you to identify an employee with an ‘as e dey hot’ attitude.

Company fit: An unfit employee in this context isn’t one who’s sick or dislikes the gym. they are just individuals whose traits doesn’t tally  with the company’s culture.

Don’t get it wrong, this set of people might posses everything from the required skill set to emotional intelligence down to enviable manners. They just would find it hard blending and in the process harming slightly the way you operate.

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3. You don’t give gifts

Customers like being appreciated. And they will do everything to stick with whoever showers them with appreciation especially when accompanied with gifts.

When you do this at expected times, they get delighted, if done when they least expect, you’d for a long time remain atop their minds, but your customers will swear to you an allegiance if you customize these unexpected gifts.

A Flash drive, mug, notepad or even a customized T-shirt can do the trick.

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4. Poor branding

Have you ever had any course to live or work with someone who owns an apple device? How can you describe their attitude towards these gadgets?

A Macbook user will barely refer to his/her laptop as ‘laptop’. You’d be showered with a full dose of disdain if you do otherwise as it’s perceived to be a  disrespect their gadget. They were’t born that way. Apple caused it, and that’s exactly the power embedded in proper branding.

Little moves such as a getting a simple but classy logo, sleek business card and a vibrant online presence can turn your customers to unrepentant evangelists of your brand.

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5 . You don’t go personal

You will be wrong to assume your dealing with your customers ends after each transaction. Very wrong. What happens to follow-up calls? How about placing random calls to your customers to inquire about their challenges with the aim of knowing how you can help?

This process can be a good way of matchmaking customers who you feel can help themselves or probably collaborate on projects.

I becomes a win-win situation for every party involved at the end of the day!

The sad thing about allowing your customers escape to your competitors is that they will probably not return to you.

So there you have it.

Have you ever lost a customer to a competitor? let’s know what you did wrong.

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