I'm sure many of you have been watching the Olympics from Sochi as we have been doing.

Something that has really been impressive is not only the hard work and dedication of these athletes but the sportsmanship and respect that these athletes are exhibiting throughout the games. The athletes, families and coaches are displaying the true spirit of comaraderie despite the fierce competition between all the countries represented in the games.

I was so touched when Canadian coach Justin Wadsworth ran onto the trail and strapped a ski onto the Russian cross-country skier Anton Gafarov. This athlete with determination, was struggling just to finish the race with his broken ski, even though he knew he would not be bringing home a medal. What a moment, and such an act of true sportsmanship and compassion by the coach. What a beautiful moment of determination to complete a race despite the adversity for the competitor.

The Canadian Skier Alex Bilodeau who won a gold medal for the moguls, who credits his inspiration to his disabled brother was so touching.

Another priceless moment was when Gilmore Junio gives up his spot in the men's 1000m to allow his teammate Denny Morrison an opportunity to compete in his place and Denny brought home the silver medal.

All these selfless acts of teamwork, hard work, determination and dedication are models that we can all build into our businesses – time to bring home the gold!

Facelift almost complete.

We have been steadily ramping up for 2014!

Our new look is almost complete and we are slowly but surely dusting and cleaning up our website pages – this facelift has been long overdue!

We have also welcomed two new talented members onto our team – what does this mean to you? Well, we are ready to accept new clients again!

Are you in need of a facelift for your business?

Pop on over to our Contact Page and we would be more than happy to discuss how CMJ can assist you.

Office Mac 2011 – Outlook A Disappointment

I have been patiently waiting for the new Office for Mac version 2011 to hit the store. I bought this on the weekend after a great deal of thought and apprehension.

So here is my verdict:

  • I was extremely disappointed that there was not an upgrade available from Office 2008 to Office 2011, unless you purchased this version in August. Ultimately, if you just happened to have purchased Office 2008 sometime this year prior to the August date, you were out of luck and needed to buy the full version of Office 2011.
  • You cannot buy any of the apps individually. They must be bought as a Suite. Unlike Office for PC where each app, including Outlook can be purchased separately.
  • There are 3 versions which you can purchase, Home and Student (which can be used on 3 Mac's, down from 5 in 2008) without Outlook. The Home and Business edition for 1 Mac or the Home and Business for 1 user and 2 Mac's. A major disappointment and expense.
  • The major reason that I decided to upgrade and buy the 2 license version is that I am a business and wanted to be able to access this on my desktop as well as the laptop. I also was so excited about the fact that Outlook was included in this version. This has proved to be another MAJOR disappointment.

Although Word, Excel and PowerPoint have had a major overhaul and is almost on par now with Office 2007/2010 – Outlook has failed to impress me. It is like taking a journey back in time to when I first started using Outlook on the PC.

I have to admit it is still far better than Entourage but with all the media hype and build up I truly expected to see something better than what Microsoft packaged. It is a like going from Outlook Express to Outlook in the much earlier versions of Windows. I honestly didn't have expectations that Outlook would be on par with the latest versions of Outlook on the PC – but I truly expected a little more than what was packaged.

There is so much functionality missing, from they way that you can configure your email accounts and test them before leaving the set up dialogue to the lack of styling your signature. I actually had to open a new email and write in my signature line, style it with my fonts and colour and then copy and paste it into the dialogue.

Another major disappointment with Outlook is the fact that there is no Business Contact Management system with this and working with the contact list is terrible – you have to scroll through every contact to find what you are looking for. Even earlier versions of Outlook for PC managed this much better. For a so called Business Suite it certainly does not impress.

As I mentioned, it is a far cry from Entourage – but come on Microsoft – smarten up! I knew it wouldn't be anything like Office 2010 but if you could have given Outlook the same care and attention that you did with the other Office apps – you would have had a big hit and more people chomping at the bit to buy this product.

So if you are seriously thinking about upgrading, look at the lower end of the scale without Outlook and save your money for now, I wish I had!

Windows 7 and Office 2010

I posted a while back that I was having issues with my precious Dell computer.It turns out that it was a bad install of Windows XP Pro.

My techie, Reg Kitchen of APlus Solutions came in – yes he does house calls – and did a fresh install of Windows 7 and updated my Office from 2007 to 2010. Thank you Reg you are the best!

Anyway, I thought I would share how delightful this computer has been for the past couple of weeks since Reg did the upgrade. It is runner cleaner and smoother and faster than it has ever been.

Office 2010 wasn't too much of change from 2007 generally speaking just a few minor things that were a little different. Outlook on the other hand  is quite a bit different but after playing with it for a day or two I really loves it.

With all the upgrades this machine is much better to work with – but – I still love my Mac and can't wait until Office 2011 for Mac gets released! I'm saving up all my pennies for it now.

How To Present With Twitter

I came across this awesome ebook how-to-present-with-twitterthat I really wanted to share with you, no strings attached.

There is quite a bit of  valuable information in here and certainly worth the share! I really love Twitter!

The Chicken

I included this little story in the last issue of the CVAC (Canadian Virtual Assistant Connection) Newsletter and thought I would share it here as well. The Author is unknown, but the story certainly should not be…

Once upon a time, there was a large mountainside where an eagle's nest rested. The eagle's nest contained four large eagle eggs. One day an earthquake rocked the mountain, causing one of the eggs to roll down the mountain to a chicken farm located in the valley below. The chickens knew that they must protect and care for the eagle's egg, so an old hen volunteered to nurture and raise the large egg.

One day the egg hatched and a beautiful eagle was born.

Sadly, however, the eagle was raised to be a chicken. Soon the eagle believed he was nothing more than a chicken. The eagle loved his home and family, but his spirit cried out for more. While playing a game on the farm one day, the eagle looked to the skies above and noticed a group of mighty eagles soaring in the skies. “Oh,” the eagle cried, “I wish I could soar like those birds.” The chickens roared with laughter, “You cannot soar with those birds. You are a chicken, and chickens do not soar.”

The eagle continued staring at his real family up above, dreaming that he could be with them. Each time the eagle would let his dreams be known, he was told it couldn't be done. That is what the eagle learned to believe. The eagle, after a time, stopped dreaming and continued to live his life like a chicken. Finally, after a long life as a chicken, the eagle passed away.

The moral of the story: You become what you believe you are. So if you ever dream of becoming an eagle, follow your dreams, not the words of a chicken.

Is Email Marketing Really Dead?

I was asked the other day about the value of email marketing and if in fact it was really worthwhile. My reply was an resounding Yes! Email marketing is indeed valuable and every business should be looking at adding this valuable tool to their arsenal, if they haven't done so already.

Social Media marketing is wonderful and I frequent Twitter and LinkedIn as much as I can. I try to keep up with the latest information coming in through these mediums. The fact is that there just isn't enough hours in a day to jump in and keep up with  the hundreds and hundreds of Tweets that fly in every day and the all the responses to LinkedIn questions posted.

Ask yourself how much time do you really take to jump in and check out all the latest on your Social Media networks?

Now fast forward to email. How often do you read your email in a day? I would be willing to bet that you at least scan every piece that drops into your inbox, right? If there is a valuable piece of information, something simple and to the point you would take the time to read this, wouldn't you. Maybe you would file it away to return to it a little later in the day where you could really focus and absorb what information was there.

Try sifting through all the Tweets to find that piece of information that you really wanted to go back to when you had the time. You know it is there, but the time and energy sifting through everything to find it again can be really time consuming.

If you are using Social Media to get information out fast, why not think about using that piece of valuable information in conjunction with an email newsletter. Chances are you will really get noticed and build your network at the same time.

Fundraiser to help Internet Marketing Sweetie

I just heard the devastating news that Melissa Ingold's (The Internet Marketing Sweetie)   baby passed away in his sleep. He was 1 week shy of his 2nd birthday.

Needless to say, the shock and sadness of this loss is difficult enough to bear, but having to cope with the financial burden of  funeral costs on top of this loss  is not an easy burden to bear. To add to the financial stress, the Ingold's were in the midst of buying a new home when Kyle passed away.

Melissa is a contributing member of WAHM (Work at home moms) and they are running a fundraiser to help Melissa during this time.
Please head over to WAHM and take advantage of some great deals while at the same time helping out a colleague and talented entrepreneur.

Beautiful Minds: Stephen Wiltshire

I came across this video today and was so intrigued and inspired by this young man that I had to share it.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.