Monday, April 16, 2012

Mid-April 2012

This post will be short and sweet.  It may take time for word to get out; I'm certain that's true.  But I'm also pleased to announce that in the past week, I've doubled my client base.  Now, I have gained clients both stateside (California) and afar (India).  That's keeping me plenty busy.  In the spare time I do manage to locate, I'm finishing up the final touches on the completely revised ten-course, forty-hour series of supervisory training.  In summary, it's beautiful weather, I'm busy (but not too busy to get a couple of visits in with my great niece), caught up with several kinds of responsibilities, and loving every moment.  Hope the days are as fulfilling for you!  Check in sometime!

Monday, March 12, 2012

March 2012

March, so far, has been devoted mostly to non-work issues.  Turns out the dog developed a tumor on his toe which was cancerous, so a toe amputation landed on the to-do list.  And after a toe amputation, one must keep an eye on recovering dog to ensure he doesn't nibble away at the bandages or, worse, self-remove the stitches.  Fortunately, my husband and Responsible Dog Manager was home on his spring break, so the healing process has gone smoothly. 

In the meantime, I have been rewriting the supervisory training courses, and I'm nearing completion of that massive task.  And I'm continuing to do some editing for clients far, far away.  I've been exploring advertising rates for more local clients, but I'm not at the level yet to shell out big money for advertising.  Seems to me that because I met so many good people in my former employment -- and had a great reputation for the quality of my training -- that networking should suffice. 

Spring is arriving, and so will an increase in my business.  Patience.  That's a quality I need to work on.  There are doors that will open.  Soon.   

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Beautiful February

This February has been exceptionally nice for Tennessee.  We've had no snow to speak of (yay), and, believe it or not, today -- February 23 -- is clocking in at 70 degrees.  It was warm enough to go sit outside on the screened-in porch. 

Editing is in full swing now.  The advertisement in Catalyst magazine is out, and I have started to send out emails to potential clients both for training and for additional editing tasks.  I'm looking at advertising now in Vanderbilt's The Hustler because it reaches both faculty and students.  However, it is a bit pricey.  I've inquired about registering my name and contact info with a major academic journal, and I'm exploring placing ads in some of the lesser-known Nashville circulars. 

I continue to network with as many people as I can, including augmenting my LinkedIn profile and joining a new group dedicated to Anti-Bullying.  My former colleague (and student) Carlos wrote a marvelous recommendation on LinkedIn of my training classes.  That was sweet of him -- and very much appreciated.

The process of rewriting and updating all of the classes to be included in the Supervisory Training that Works! series is still ongoing.  I guess I'm a bit of a perfectionist...but nothing less than the highest quality is my objective.  The new series is going to be stunning, so I will post more when I complete the beast.  I guess the theme for this blog would then be "beauty" (the weather) and "the beast" (the ongoing rewriting saga).  That feels right.

The evening news has had a good deal of information recently on methamphetamine in Tennessee--yet another beast.  Enough for now.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Groundhog Day

This year has flown so far.  Fortunately, we have enjoyed a very mild winter. 
My business has already enjoyed some success in 2012 by completing some editing work.  Due to the marvels of the internet, I have assisted a couple of professors who live 2/3rds of the way around the world. 
And I've done some good networking with individuals who may indeed need some training done to get that phase of the business started. 
Next week is another CABLE luncheon; CABLE is a group of highly-dedicated-to-networking Nashville women (and yes there are some guy members, too).  The speaker for February is Nikki Giovanni, an American poet originally from Knoxville, TN, who is now a professor at Virginia Tech.  I took a look at one of Nikki's webpages, and she has collected over 30 honorary doctorates.  Wow. 
I'm working on improving my product these days, a sure-fire way to success.  When I'm ready to roll it out, it will be fabulous.  In the meantime, stay patient with me.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Kicking Off 2012

It's nearly a month since the last blog entry.  During these past few weeks, I've had some "once in a lifetime" moments: namely, my first cruise ever.  We went to the Caribbean, with stops at Grand Turk; San Juan, Puerto Rico; St. Thomas; and an island called Half Moon Cay owned by the cruiseline.  We saw wonderful beaches, great sights (including a SkyRide on St. Thomas), and ate way too much delicious food.  The best part, of course, was spending time with my husband's parents.

By the crowning of 2012 we were back home, and it's now time to buckle down.  First project?  I've installed Skype if you need to see that I really am a professional.  (My Skype id is sharon.felton18).  Second project?  I purchased a software upgrade and am soon to be the proud owner of Microsoft Office 2010.  I selected the package that includes Publisher (trademark), so one further item in my arsenal is that I am capable of producing a newsletter for your company with a quick turnaround. 

Within the next few days, a magazine called Catalyst will be distributed to some 10,000 technology and business managers around greater Nashville.  I have an ad there and expect my business to kick into high gear shortly.  Training is such an important element in today's workplaces, especially considering that with reduced budgets, employees are often asked to shoulder even more responsibilities than they were previously assigned.  Managers are watching the bottom line, of course (just as the majority of us are watching all sorts of political fireworks sputter and fizzle).

Here is my message, as briefly as I can manage.  Your employees will benefit from engaged training, and I am a reasonably-priced solution to provide that dynamic classroom training.  If I don't have a course already on the books, I am skilled at developing a curriculum to meet your business' needs.  Let me know what you need.

Let's talk about compliance courses and productivity-enhancing training:
  • Sexual Harassment Prevention
  • Diversity in the Workplace
  • Substance Abuse policy
  • Anti-Bullying -- so important these days!
  • Customer Service
  • Performance Management & Coaching.  I can add in Progressive Discipline if that is the method your company utilizes
  • Email Etiquette
Both staff and management may benefit from a course in Business Writing that Works!  And if you want an intensive compendium of professional development classes, I'll be ready to offer a ten course series, some forty hours in total, by Spring.

Finally, on another note, don't overlook the need for a talented editor.  Contact me; I am ready, willing, and able to help:  Visit the website as well.

I'll try not to wait another month before the next blog post.  Enough for now!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Let's call this post "My, how time flies!"  With good intentions to blog at least three times a week, I have a look at the calendar and realize that I have not entered a post here since Thanksgiving -- and to be honest, even that post was excusing myself due to family / holiday commitments.  (The dressing was yummy, btw).

But because I have been busy, let me just record here that I have been engaged in curriculum development.  After networking with a friend who has an established training business, she gave me an idea that I should develop an entire series of supervisory training classes.  Well, it's an excellent -- and do-able -- project.  There are a couple of core classes I would need to develop.  So that's what I've been working on.  For instance, a core concern for good management training is how to handle conflict.  Naturally, conflicts arise in even the most collegial workplace atmospheres.  A talented manager will know how to handle subordinates who are experiencing a disagreement, as well as how to defuse a potentially explosive situation based on news he or she must deliver to his/her staff.  So over this past week, I have been engaged in curriculum development.  Let me tell you, that process is both grueling and exciting.  I am pleased with the product I have developed, and it is uniquely my own, including exercises and activities.

The next course I will be working on will be a meaningful class in communication skills.  A central concept in conflict resolution is effective listening, so it makes sense that the next course should focus on effective communication.  I will admit right now that as we approach the holidays, there will be another large block of time -- as much as two weeks or more -- in which I will not be putting fingers to blog posts.  But as we move past the beloved holidays and into the bright, new, fresh 2012, let me just quote from Arnold Schwartzenegger: All'll be baccckkkkk. 

Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and a relaxing and energizing new year to you.  Cheers!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

November 22, 2011

Because you already know that this week is devoted to family and to a happy Thanksgiving holiday for all (you, too!), I thought I would include a great photo I found instead of text for today's blog post.  Once I decided on the name of "eye train" for this blog, I went Googling to see if there were any photos that might appeal to both the "eye" part and the "train" part.  Well, I didn't locate a "train" part as in professional training / teaching / enlightening folks, but I did find this photo which I liked a great deal.  It's from a train station in Japan, and the photographer gave me her permission to post it.

Hope you enjoy it too.  Based on the advice of some of my networking friends, I am now considering an adjustment to the schedule of classes I will be offering.  But more on that later as the new product develops.  Today, I'll be making cornbread and biscuits for Thursday's dressing.