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While it may be easy enough to find the perfect holiday gift for friends
and family, it’s an entirely different matter when it comes to business
associates. You want to get them something memorable, but not too personal,
something high quality, but within a budget.

1. Calendars. According to a recent survey, nearly 50 percent of small businesses plan to send cards or calendars. If you choose to do the same, make yours stand out by using a unique size or design, possibly using photos you or your employees have taken.

2. Gift cards. As long as you’ve chosen an appropriate restaurant, store or online retailer, this allows your recipient to select what they want. Be mindful of company and IRS limitations, typically $25.

3. Food. Who doesn’t like a special treat? The key is to know what they enjoy. Chocolate, coffee, bagels, cookies, and other pastries are among the top choices.

4. Charitable donations. If you make a donation on your client’s behalf, select one that’s not controversial and one that your recipient feels an affinity towards. Popular options include medical research, nature conservancy and disaster aid.

5. Books. Readers can never have too many. Match the book with their interests whether that’s business, cooking, gardening, or travel.

6. Pens. Despite our electronic world, there’s still room for a beautiful writing instrument. There’s nothing like the feel of a high-end pen. For a special touch, have it engraved with a meaningful message.

7. Desk Items. Crystal paperweights, business card holders, desk caddies, mouse pads, coasters, clocks, or picture frames are popular items and will be a top-of-desk reminder of you all year long.

8. Travel Items. The globe-trotter will appreciate unique luggage tags, a travel alarm clock, compact umbrella, or document holder.

9. Personalized Stationery. Lots of people write individual thank you notes and special messages to co-workers and clients and will appreciate personalized cards and envelopes.

10. Plants. Consider a seasonal bouquet or planter to brighten up their office. For recipients with a green thumb, select plants or herbs they can transfer to a garden in the spring.

Business gifts can help cement a business relationship and leave a favorable impression of you all year long. With a variety of options, you’re sure to find the perfect gift and within your budget too. Give us a call at McShane’s for more great ideas on how to create a memorable impression that will last well past the holiday season.

Author:  BiggestBook.com

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Long hours, being underpaid and unappreciated are just a few typical workplace complaints. But while occasional grousing may help ease tension, if negativity dominates your daily thoughts it’s time to swap it for an attitude of gratitude. And there’s no better time than Thanksgiving to do it. Here are the top ten reasons to be thankful you have a job.

1. You get paid
The truth is that most of us show up every day for the money. We have financial obligations to meet like a mortgage, car payment, loans, kids in diapers, kids in college, as well as everyday living expenses. Under the economic climate that we currently reside, simply receiving a regular paycheck ranks high on the list of reasons to be thankful at work, for work. Whatever your income, you have a job that pays you for your time and effort, often with benefits like paid holidays and vacations.

2. You develop friendships
In addition to a regular paycheck, enjoying your colleagues is a key contributor to a positive work experience. The conversations, support and shared interests you develop with co-workers often lead to lifelong friendships. Take time to get to know the people around you. Besides making a friend, they may even help you with your next career move.

3. You get to laugh sometimes
There are some organizations that have a stigma associated with laughter, because it may appear you’re not taking your work seriously enough. Lighthearted moments, however, break up the monotony and help you bond with coworkers. Whether it’s the prankster down the hall or a creative brainstorming meeting, it’s good to laugh and have a little fun. The happier you are, the more productive you are.

4. You have a sense of accomplishment
It doesn’t matter if you’re sweeping a street or managing your own multimillion dollar corporation, a job well done brings satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment. Reaching a goal builds confidence and encourages you to set and reach new ones.

5. You have the opportunity to share your unique talents
You’re one-of-a-kind. In the entire world, there is no one who thinks like you, has your experience, talents and personality. Celebrate and share your uniqueness.

6. Your competitors challenge you
Someone is always nipping at your heels. As much as you may want competitors to go away, they also challenge you to get creative and try new approaches you might not otherwise. Thank them for keeping you on your toes.

7. You make a difference
In large corporations it’s easy to feel like a small cog in a big wheel. But without the cog, the wheel won’t run near as smoothly. Always know that whatever you do, it’s part of a bigger picture and that your job matters or it wouldn’t exist.

8. You keep your mind sharp
Working keeps you mentally stimulated and challenged as you learn new skills and deal with new people and situations. This keeps your neurons and synapses firing on all cylinders.

9. You probably enjoy certain tasks
If you’re one of the few people who enjoy every aspect of every project; you’re one of the lucky ones! Most of us like certain tasks more than others. Whether you love leading a meeting or writing a report, relish those moments and try to do them regularly.

10. You solve a problem
Your job exists because there was a problem to solve. The receptionist solves the problem of how to field phone calls. The job of inventory manager exists to solve the problem of ensuring the company does not run out of widgets. No problem, no job. We see this more and more as email has replaced postal workers and self-checking registers have eliminated grocery store clerks. Be thankful for the problem your job solves.

Work is not always a bed of roses, nor is it all thorns. Instead of longingly dreaming of future retirement, be thankful for what’s good today. You’ll be healthier and happier for it.

*Article derived from biggestbook.com

With Thanksgiving a week away, the time has come to prepare for the 2012 holiday season. There is so much to do.  We shop and cook, decorate; spend time with loved ones, plan trips and parties, packing activities into a very limited amount of time.  It is also the time of year to think about those who do not have food to cook, let alone a home to decorate.  McShane’s would like to recognize organizations that support these members of our community.  Sojourner Truth House is a community resource and a day shelter for homeless and at-risk women and children.  Women who come to Sojourner Truth House are often caught in a cycle of addiction, mental illness, and poverty.  Many arrive hungry, physically and emotionally fragile.  Others have just lost a job or a house.  Sojourner Truth House provides food, personal items, counseling, as well as resources and job assistance.  Every month they serve about 1,498 people in need.  So for the past four years, McShane’s is proud to be able to help by collecting immediate need items for this wonderful organization.  Below is the list of items that we will be collecting, please take a look and see how you could contribute.  Have a safe and wonderful holiday season!

  • Toilet Paper
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrushes
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Bar Soap
  • Conditioner
  • Women’s Socks

Contact Erin (erhodes@mcshanes.com or 924-1400) if you have any questions or if you would like to schedule a pick up.  Every little bit helps!  Thank you!

These days you can’t turn around without running into an option to refill your ink cartridge at a drug store or buy a cheap copy-cat cartridge likely made overseas. Who cares as long as you are saving money by avoiding the pricey OEM cartridge? You should care.

In an industry where it is hard to stand out, Innovera has managed in ways other brands don’t even think about:

  • Support: Innovera products are fully supported by our domestic team who are available via phone or e-mail to help you install a cartridge, cross-reference the printer or OEM cartridge and handle any product issues. Innovera Support will help dealers look like rock stars or talk directly to an end user. You know when you buy an Innovera cartridge, you are protected.
  • Peace of Mind through Indemnification: Those cheap, sometimes charmingly cheap compatibles out there are usually made overseas. For some products that is ok, for imaging supplies there are a lot of laws out there like the First Sale Doctrine that go after manufacturers and resellers of these brands because they infringe on OEM patents. Innovera does not infringe. Innovera is made from OEM cartridges that have been used once and remanufactured to exceed OEM standards using our own processes that do not breach OEM intellectual property. This process turns out a quality product for its users.

There are a lot of options out there but Innovera is your best bet.

Author:  Adam Valentine

Clipster

Function 1: A magnetic binder clip. Function 2: A business card holder. Function 3: A pen holder.

It is important to choose your giveaways wisely when you’re preparing for trade shows or when you are looking to leave something more than just your business card behind.  I came across this item that serves its purpose on many levels, and I like it so much that I feel compelled to share.  First, it is an imprint-ready magnetic binder clip.  They are small and handy.  Most people use and love binder clips, so it’s an almost guarantee that it will make it back to someone’s home or office.  The product includes an insert for your business card as well as a holder for a pen.  These features set this product apart from your ordinary binder clip, and make this a great self-promo item.  Give us a call and start handing yours out at the next event!

Zombies

From the left: Ed Thompson, Erin Rhodes, Paul Pivoris, Chrischelle Schmidt.

On Thursday, October 25th the McShane’s Zombies attended the Porter County Chamber Coalition Network Night for a successful networking event. This is an event that McShane’s looks forward to every year. The Halloween themed event encourages the vendors to have fun with their themes. This year the McShane’s team came dressed as zombies with some help from the make-up talents of Shirley’s Merle Norman on Lafayette in Valparaiso. It is a great opportunity to have fun while gaining exposure for the business. Next year’s event will take place on October 17, 2013…the theme planning is underway!

Romp and Roll

The Survivor Walk around the football field kicked off Cancer Resource Centre’s Romp and Roll.

On Sunday, October 7th, McShane’s supported Team Mad About Mindy at Cancer Resource Centre’s Annual Romp and Roll event. A group of loyal supporters gathered, bundled up, and walked to honor those who have survived and to remember those who lost their battle to the vicious disease.  We will continue to support this cause as a tribute to everyone whose lives have been affected by cancer.  Thank you to those who came out for the event!