How to Make The Lounge Room Look Bigger and Better

The lounge room is the primary living space in most people’s homes. It contains the TV and entertainment systems. It’s often a place where people eat and socialise. That’s why the interior design of this space is important as it’s the main part of the house that multiple people use at the same time.

This level of foot traffic means that the living room is both cluttered with items people use and at the same time is lacking in space for those people to use them. This leads to a dilemma with interior design.

Not every lounge room will be the same size and not everyone will have the expertise to make the changes they want. Luckily handyman services are able to provide someone who specialises in assisting this type of work.

Consider the Layout

Sometimes a lounge room can be improved tenfold by simply moving some things around. While the best way to avoid issues with the layout is to plan it before buying furniture, not everyone has that luxury.

If the lounge room is of a reasonably large size then it can be divided into two or more areas. These areas can be anchored around a rug or carpet in the rooms centre. It’s also important to make sure the furniture is far enough apart from each other so that there is a corridor for people to move through.

It should be noted that when creating separate seating areas, that they are not so far apart that people cannot converse. Make sure any seating that can be faced opposite each other is done so. If the lounge room is going to be a place of lively conversation, make sure that the room is designed to facilitate it.

Create a Focal Point

In the days when most people used fireplaces, they were a natural focal point for the lounge room. Nowadays it’s usually the TV, but it doesn’t need to be. A large piece of art or even a mirror can serve just as well.

Whatever is chosen, the flow of the room should be expanding out from the focal point. Placing a plant or bowl of fruit is a perfect addition to compliment the central focus of the room.

Flexible Furniture

Just because the room is small, there isn’t less that can be done with it. It all depends on understanding the restrictions of certain types of furniture and what compromises need to be made. The most important part is to maximise floor space and maintain a welcoming atmosphere.

Furniture that is made of a lightweight material keeps the room from feeling congested and having raised legs gives a bigger sense of spaciousness.

Be smart with storage elements as well. Plenty of sofas and coffee tables can include added storage capacity. These multifunctional units save space on using cabinets and side tables as well as keeping spaces clear of the items that are commonly used.

Don’t just go for seating size alone. Planning furniture decisions around infrequent social gathering means most days they’ll just be an empty seat taking up space. It’s a living room after all, so make it as easy to live in as possible.

Use Colour to Expand from Top to Bottom

It’s hard to physically expand the size of the room once it’s been constructed, but there are some clever ways to make it look more spacious.

Bright colours on the ceiling and on the floor help to make the room feel larger. Other optical illusions like vertically striped wallpaper and taller lamps all work to build the room upwards. On the contrary, horizontal stripes will make the room feel wider.

The use of colour also applies to furniture items as well. Having furniture in white, cream, or beige will help to expand the perceived size of the room. People having trouble can always use handyman services  to help move, build or repair their lounge room furniture.

The colour choices should be as uniform as possible. Although it’s possible to play with different shades of the same general palette, too much mix matching will make the room look tacky.

Widening Windows

If the lounge room has large windows, use them to help widen and illuminate the space. Natural light and fresh air always help to make any room feel more spacious and inviting.

Like wallpaper, window curtains and drapes can be used to expand the room by using striped patterns. Make sure that the colour of them matches the walls so that the effects merge into one another.

Mirror Magic

Mirrors and other reflective services are an incredible way to add space to the room. This goes for glass tables and countertops as well. They work to reflect light by intensifying and emitting it around the room. This makes the space brighter and in doing so makes it feel larger.

Final Thoughts

Expanding and improving the living room space is not always easy and it really depends on the resources available. There are plenty of neat tricks to widen a small room and add vibrancy to a large one.

No matter what kind of space someone has, the tips and tricks here are based on easy to understand design philosophies than can help them get the most out of their lounge rooms.

For anyone needing assistance in converting parts of their home, hiring handyman services is a great way to get some added expertise to make sure the job is done right.

Social Media trends hitting businesses in 2018

As with the digital marketing landscape, social media is constantly changing and these platforms are now striving to become leaders in innovative marketing options and audience targeting. As a result, businesses need to take not and advantage of these new additions to social media platforms.

Knowing and engaging with your audience

Facebook recently announced that they would be making changes to their algorithm to ensure that people receive less brand and organisational information on their news feeds and more friend-related information.

This means that businesses will need to have a deeper understanding of who their audience is and what they want to see on their news feeds.

Information from businesses and brands will now need to be more engaging and socially targeted as opposed to click-bait advertising.

FB and Instagram’s Ad Manager

This point relates to the above as marketers will now need to be more aware of the types of ads and their frequency across peoples news feeds. This means having a deeper understanding of your audience’s needs and wants, as mentioned above, so that the Ad Manager can be used more effectively.

This means that specific social media campaigns will need to be run and made relevant to the platform. This means running various campaigns across each of the platforms to best target your audience.

Having a rich understanding of the Ad Manager tool on these platforms is crucial to the success of the social media campaign.

Driven by mobile

Mobile search and internet use is becoming more and more popular every day as people shift from their laptops and desktops to their mobile phones.

This means that your content and advertising must be suitable for mobile users. Having mobile-specific sites and tailoring your campaigns towards mobile devices is going to be critical to getting the most out of your marketing dollars.

The rise of video

Videos relate well to the above point on mobile with a huge rise in the prominence and response to video advertising in comparison to text and images. Video can come in a number of forms and as people are now constantly on their mobiles, access to video is even easier.

Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook all provide features that enable businesses to post live or pre-recorded videos relevant to a campaign on specific activity on the day. However, ensuring that these videos load quickly and contain the relevant information is important to keep people engaged.

How to get the most out of your employees

Getting the most out of your employees is every employers dream and it is what makes a business successful. Having everyone driven to achieve the same goal makes for a stronger team and improves overall productivity.

Here are four ways to get the most out of your employees.

Employee feedback creates employee loyalty

Regularly asking for employee feedback on changes made within the workplace makes them feel valued not only for the work that they do but their overall business input. This not only ensures that the workspace becomes an environment that works for all employees but it also imparts a greater respect and sense of ownership over the office space which translates into loyalty for the business.

Acknowledge that everyone has a different method

Create a workspace that accounts for various working styles and afford your employees the freedom to work as they need to. Of course, that doesn’t mean that they don’t have to work at all but it does mean that they need to be able to work via methods that appeal to them.

This means having a range of available work spaces from desks to meeting rooms, brainstorming boards and more quiet and secluded areas to allow people to work to their highest standard. Out of office work should also be accommodated for those who need to get out of the office every now and then. This keeps employees minds clear and reduces stress whilst helping them to value the business.

Keep everyone informed

When we say keep everyone informed we literally mean everyone. That means that every employee from the top down to the bottom needs to be kept in the loop about company goals and its performance. Any changes in these goals need to be communicated throughout the whole business.

This has two core impacts; firstly, it ensures that everyone is striving towards the same target making for a larger collective effort, and secondly, it makes those who at times may feel as though they play a small role feel like they are an important cog within the business which all employees are.

Be upfront about your values and culture

Actively displaying your company’s core values through business interactions both externally and internally is important to get the most out of employees. Being upfront about this, even in the interview process, ensures that the right people are hired and those hired are willing to put in the work by obeying the company’s values.

This also ensures consistency throughout the business making for better relationships within it, leading to a greater productivity, and also better relationships outside of it as customers know what they are getting and have a clear understanding of what the business stands for.

Are technical skills or leadership qualities more important?

In today’s digital landscape both technical skills and leadership play an important role. We are seeing that technical skills are becoming and more important as almost everything has some kind of digital component that requires a new set of skills. However there is also the decline in communication and potential opportunities to demonstrate leadership that these leadership qualities may be becoming more important as a result.

There is definitely an argument to say that if you do not have the technical skills how are you to lead? But I would say that the reverse can also be asked because without the leadership skills what good is it having the technical skills?

There is also much debate as to the educational aspect of each of these factors. Many would say that it is easy to learn the required technical skills for any job but leadership cannot be learnt or, at least, are far more difficult to learn. It may be true that the technical skills can be learnt and arguably there are far more opportunities for them to be learnt with training courses and the willingness for business to train their employees in these areas also. However, leadership can also be learnt through reading and application much like these technical skills.

The situation is likely to play a large role in the weighting placed on each of these factors but it would be naïve to say that one mattered more than the other. Leadership skills are extremely important, even for those not in a leadership position. Leadership fosters a positive environment that is determined to learn and achieve greater things. Leaders empower those around them to achieve more and develop their own skills so that they are able to out their best foot forward.

Having the technical skills to accompany this will ensure a path of continued growth learning with others along the way. The technical skills are necessary to complete tasks and find empathy is the challenges faced by everyone within the team. The technical skills provide the foundation for the work to be completed but no work will be completed without the presence of a leader.

Yes, no one can quantitatively examine a person’s leadership ability and that is why technical skills are so important. However, leadership skills are required for growth and development both as an individual and for the business so that new ideas and progressions can be taken head on and implemented. Technical skills foster the ability to lead the team efficiently whilst leadership skills enable sophisticated development of technical ability.

5 ways to improve your profits

Profitability is at the core of any business as it is what allows it to grow and sustains its operations. Business profits are always being sought and in many instances they are able to be found. Of course, pumping more money into the operation can sometimes increase your profits but this may not always be the case as this new injection of money may not be to a valuable cause.

Here are five ways that you can increase your businesses profitability.

  1. Evaluate systems and workflows and make the necessary adjustments
    Your business systems and workflows are at the heart of productivity. They allow for employees to work in the most efficient way possible that maximises the strengths of each individual. Constant re-evaluation of these systems will allow you to eliminate excessive steps, re-design work spaces and potentially re-order operations to get the best out of each process.
  2. Remove tasks that don’t add value to the customer or company
    This is one of the easiest methods for increasing profits. Every company engages in activities and tasks that do not add significant value to the customer or the business operations and hence it is a waste of money. Seeking regular feedback and understanding what your customers and employee needs are will help to eliminate unnecessary activities.
  3. Outline how employees can contribute to profitability
    Every single person who works within an organisation is a factor in profitability. Clearing outlining how they can contribute to the company’s profits will empower them and likely improve the businesses success.
  4. Increase value to clients and customers
    All organisations should constantly be looking for ways to improve the experience of customers and clients so that they feel a greater value from each transaction. Seeking customer and client feedback is a great way to achieve this as well as identifying the service element of any interaction. Small things such as a hand written note from the CEO or relevant team member can increase the perceived value received.
  5. Increases in dollar per transaction
    Increasing the revenue per transaction is a sure fire way to increase profits as there is now a greater output per input. This may be as simple as a slight increase in prices but could also come down to the bundling of goods and services for clients and customers. This links back directly to the increased value for customers and clients who may see a small increase in returns as a worthy investment.

5 ways to build customer loyalty

Continually striving to build your customer base can be tempting but it is important not to forget about your existing customers. Repeat business is where a lot of your revenue is going to come from and building a strong and loyal customer base is eventually going to flow into new customers through word of mouth.

The first stage of gaining customer loyalty is the follow up saying thank you for purchasing from us and to ask them if they enjoyed your product or service and if it reached their expectations. Beyond that, there are a few different ways that customer loyalty can be solidified.

  1. Let customers know what you are doing
    Highlighting everything that you have done for your customers isn’t bragging it is affirmation. If you do not tell your customers what you are doing for them then they may not ever know. Keep them updated with a newsletter and inform them of every step that you are taking in order to meet their requests. This ensures that they feel valued and know you care.

  2. Write to loyal customers
    Loyal customers are the core of your business as they are the ones who promote your through word of mouth – free marketing. Constant communication between you and your loyal customers ensures that your business stays in their mind.

  3. Make it personal
    Email is a great way to regularly communicate with customers but it certainly isn’t very personal. Take the time to speak with them on the phone every now and then as a sign that you are thinking about them and are interested in how they are going. This will make sure that they value you over all the other email-dominated businesses.

  4. Remember special occasions
    For businesses with regular customer interaction sending cards for birthdays, anniversaries and holiday periods is a great form of marketing. It doesn’t feel like marketing for the customer but it reminds them that you are still working and are there if they need anything.

  5. Inform the customer
    Any new developments within the industry or your business should be communicated to customers. They want to know what is going on in their relevant world and information regarding your business and the industry keeps them informed. It also creates a sense of care within the customer for your business as they now feel more connected to its operations – regardless of there being any truth in that.

How to manage employee conflict

Conflict is an everyday phenomenon within the workplace and has the ability to boost or halt any momentum within a team, division or organisation. If conflict is allowed to continue and build and can create a negative organisational culture that becomes contagious.

It can be challenging to try and find the source of the conflict or to discuss it with others in the workplace as they may not be willing to divulge information out of fear or it could trigger a negative reaction that spreads quickly throughout the team. Respect is of upmost importance in this instance and that is why dealing with it swiftly and honestly is the best course of action.

Confronting conflict head on is the right way to go about it however there are a few things to keep in mind when doing so.

Timing

The timing of the confrontation is important as you simply cannot accuse employees of any wrongdoings without the evidence to back it up. Investigating the source of the problem and asking everyone within the team or division is important. However, as soon as adequate information has been found a quick course of action is necessary.

Know the boundaries

Everyone deals with conflict differently and some employees may not understand that they are causing frustration or other issues within the team. This is where knowing your employees limitations and their behaviours is important. You want to be able to deal with them in the fairest way possible so understanding them as a person will enable you to talk to them about it in a constructive manner whilst empowering them to perform to a higher and more inclusive manner.

Respect differences

Not all conflict is necessarily bad and it isn’t always a case of right and wrong. Try to understand the different points of view that are being discussed so that a civilised solution can be found. There will be many instances where both parties may be right but a frustrating failure to understand each other has led to conflict. Try to help employees understand each other better to avoid further conflict.

Act quickly

Whilst the conflict may not necessarily be resolved in an instant, reducing the tension within the team of division is important before it becomes a problem. Working through various issues may take time but ensuring a positive and team-first environment is the most important aspect to get on top of. Seek to find ways that enables employees to discuss disagreements in a more professional manner that can benefit the business.