Tag Archives: Top 10

Balloon Girl

Platform Scottsdale: Your turn to schmooze, not stress!

Whether it be a big conference for your company, a fundraiser for the charity near and dear to your heart, your best friend’s wedding, or your own kid’s birthday party – we all know that it is high season for events, of all types, here in the Valley!

No matter if the event is designed to celebrate, educate, or motivate – the process has the potential to be stressful. Yet nearly every single day, I’m still asked WHY someone should hire an event planner. So here’s the long and the short of it…

Top 10 Reasons to Hire an Event Planner

10. It’s YOUR Budget
Some people think hiring an event planner costs too much money – not true! You set your budget and in the end, an event planner’s job is to help you save money and time!

9. Eeeny Meeny Miny Moe
We don’t pick sides! When everyone has an opinion and everyone thinks it’s “their party/event,” we approach the situation without bias, act as a buffer, and help all parties involved see and understand the different perspectives.

8. Fire Fightin’
We are skilled in crisis management, or “putting out fires”. We’ve got backup plans galore and can handle almost all situations with style and grace, without ever skipping a beat.

7. Read between the Lines
Contracts can be very intimidating and overwhelming – especially when you’re dealing with so many at one time! We’ve reviewed hundreds of contracts, from all types of vendors, and we know what to look for to help clients get the most bang for their buck!

6. In the Know
Lucky for us (and you!), it’s our job to stay up on the latest industry trends! We’re the first to know of the season’s hottest colors, popular themes, new venues and entertainers, and we also know when something has run its course!

5. You’re Busy
You have a lot going on! Between your job, volunteer work, driving carpool, blah, blah, blah – who has time to plan an event? We do! And we will help keep you and all of the vendors on track by managing a very detailed timeline.

4. Our Peeps
In short, we know good people. We align ourselves with the best of the best. Many event planners build their businesses on relationships. And because of this, we have great working relationships with many vendors. This translates to improved experiences and better deals for our clients!

3. Matchmaker, Matchmaker, Make me a Match 
There are dozens of qualified vendors in each category and even though it may sound like fun, there is no need to meet with every single florist or caterer in the state of Arizona! Let us save you time, energy (and a few headaches!) and match you with the most qualified candidates that meet your needs, and together, we can narrow down from there.

2. The Big Picture
The band or DJ you hire is going to knock your socks off when it comes to music, and your florist is going to have all of your guests saying “oooh” and “aaah”! While each vendor is going to be so focused on impressing you with what they know best, as they should, your event planner will be embracing the big picture and making sure every aspect of your big event goes smoothly.

1. Mix & Mingle
Another perk of being an event planner, is that we get to help our clients look good! By coordinating vendors, making sure everyone is where they need to be and when, we take the stress off of you on event day. It’s your day – you should be able to mix, mingle, network, and celebrate all you want!

Hoover Dam

Canadian Group Invests in $5.2M Office Complex, $40M Total in Valley

Talia Jevan Properties, Inc. acquired the 22,080 SF North Scottsdale Corporate Office Complex located at 6970 E. Chauncey Ln. in Scottsdale for $5.2M. The seller in the transaction was Alliance Real Estate Holdings LLC. Talia Jevan owns two additional assets in the Metro Phoenix market and continues to seek investment opportunities for purchase. Established in 2006, Talia Jevan Properties, Inc. is a privately owned investment firm specializing in the acquisition and long-term ownership of “signaturesque” commercial real estate assets throughout North America. Telia Jevan’s present portfolio consists of 440,000 square feet of prized, commercial real estate properties, which range from irreplaceable heritage buildings in downtown Vancouver, British Columbia, to state-of-the-art medical and class-A retail and office properties in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The Chauncey Lane Property was brokered by Cashen Realty Advisors. The seller was represented by Josh Landers of Commercial 33 in Phoenix and Andrea Davis of Andrea Davis Commercial Real Estate in Scottsdale.

The Canadian group has invested $40M in the Valley in the last 12 months, Raymond Cashen says, adding it’s looking to invest another $100M.


Chandler and Mesa ranked among Top 10 tech hotbeds

To find the city where technology startup businesses are thickest on the ground, look no further than the Valley. Both Chandler and Mesa rank among the Top 10 for cities with the most tech startups — computers, software, medical devices and electronics — per capita.

That is one of the striking findings of a ranking of U.S. cities by technology startups per capita. Another is that none of the Top 10 tech startup hotbeds lies east of the Mississippi River. Silicon Valley boasts three, Southern California has another and the rest scatter across Texas, Arizona, Nevada and Washington.

The data and analysis came from SizeUp, a San Francisco–based provider of free business intelligence for small and mid-sized businesses. SizeUp CEO and cofounder Anatalio Ubalde sifted through millions of records from a plethora of sources to build it. He and his team identified companies less than five years old in the fields of computers, software, medical devices and electronics that were located in the top 100 cities by population.

Here are the top 10 cities for the most tech startups and the number of startups they have per 100,000 population:

1. Fremont, CA, 21.3
2. San Jose, CA, 10.1
3. Irving, TX, 6.5
4. Chandler, AZ, 5.1
5. Austin, TX, 4.5
6. Paradise, NV, 3.9
7. Anaheim, CA, 3.8
8. Mesa, AZ, 3.7
9. Seattle, WA, 3.5
10. Santa Ana, CA, 3.3


Top 10 mistakes businesses make when using social media

When a business leader calls for the creation of a Facebook page and a witty Twitter handle, he often believes the social media strategy is in place and he returns to his “core” duties.

The problem with this is that for any business in 2012 and beyond, social media needs to be considered a core part of your business plan and it must be implemented at the senior level and trickle down into the DNA of the entire organization.

Steve Nicholls: author of Social Media in Business, international speaker, and social media strategist has noticed a recurring list of misconceptions when it comes to the use of social media in business.  These common mistakes hinder an organizations ability to maximize the use of social media while mitigating risk.

Here are the top ten most common mistakes companies make when trying to use social media to grow their business:

1. It is all about social networking. Social networking websites such as Facebook are just a very small part of social media. Social media is much more for business, providing four main benefits: communication, collaboration, community and collective intelligence opportunities, however, companies are still not fully aware of all of these. Iconic organisations operating in different industries such as The Times, Accenture, Salesforce.com, Starbucks, Cisco, NASA, Groupon and Coca-Cola have all made use of social media in very different ways to gain competitive advantage, and understanding the various opportunities social media provides for business is the first step towards capitalizing its potential.

2. It is simple. Social media is mostly user-friendly, but embracing it in business is far from being simple. There is a huge difference between using Facebook and bringing the right aspects of social media into the DNA of a company. The larger the company is, the more complex the task of bringing it in successfully. As the amount and depth of information relating to social media is overwhelming, capitalizing on the right combinations of social media tools for the company can be intricate.

3. It is free. One aspect that makes social media for business a very attractive avenue is that many tools are free to use, providing excellent cost-effective solutions to business. However, the cost of bringing social media within a company is not completely free. Time is the key resource. Going too fast and adopting social media hastily in an organization can bring more risks than benefits. Doing it well requires learning and training processes that will need time, and investing in that time is key for success.

4. It is not important. Social media opens doors to enormous markets. For instance, there are 850 million Facebook users and 50 million business people on LinkedIn, including the CEOs of the 500 top companies in the world; thus the business opportunities a company can get by connecting to only 0.1% of those are extremely valuable. Markets like these simply cannot be ignored, thus businesses that are still hesitant as to how useful or important social media can be for them need to consider this aspect strategically. Social media is no longer a choice; it is a strategic resource and a new dimension to corporate strategy.

5. No need for policy. Having a solid social media policy when incorporating social media within an organization is crucial as it will allow the mitigation of potential risks. Social media can open a company to different types of risks including security issues, PR issues and HR issues. While these risks are very real, it is essential not to let them inhibit progress, thus the key is to develop a sound social media policy that identifies the risks and mitigates them.

6. Having a negative mindset. It is common for managers, employees and other players of an organization to have some prejudice against adopting social media within their organization, thinking it will mostly bring problems and waste company time. What is important to keep in mind however is that benefits far outweigh risks, thus having the will to invest time and mitigate possible risks through a clear social media policy will allow a company to increase its competitive advantage on the long-run.

7. No structured implementation process. It is easy to go enthusiastically in the wrong direction with social media. To prevent this from happening, managers need to have a step-by step formula in order to analyze their internal and external business environments and develop a systematic, contextual approach to bringing social media within the realm of their organizations. Bringing social media in the company needs to be done through a systematic model that will work to optimize benefits while mitigating risks along the way.

8. Identification of constraints. Many constraints to adopting social media are invisible and as a result, these are the hardest to identify. People issues are often the biggest obstacle to the implementation of social media, but these are often hidden from view. Thus making sure that all invisible constraints are also identified is crucial in order to prevent them from erupting later on and undermining the project.

9. No clear goals. Perhaps the most important aspect to keep in mind when using social media for business is that it constantly needs to be fitted into the more general business goals of the company. Using social media just for the sake of using it will not have any positive impact, but instead might create more problems than benefits. Having a focused strategy that will incorporate social media within general goals is thus key.

10. No ongoing strategy. Social media is a constantly evolving avenue of opportunities; the tools that are useful today might not be useful tomorrow. As tools change, a winning social media strategy will be one that is able to capture all these innovations and constantly create the right combinations of tools for your business, according to the general business goals.


Top 10 cities and states for job growth

Unemployment and job growth remain big issues in the U.S. economy and in the current political campaigns. So now, more than halfway through the year, what are the top states and cities for job growth? Research Professor Lee McPheters of the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University provides rankings and analysis based on the latest figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Top 10 cities and surrounding metro areas (1 million or more workers) for non-agricultural job growth, comparing July 2011 with July 2012:

1. San Francisco – up 3.5 percent
2. Houston – up 3.2 percent
3. Denver – up 3 percent
4. (tie) Phoenix – up 2.9 percent
4. (tie) Seattle – up 2.9 percent
4. (tie) San Diego – up 2.9 percent
7. Cincinnati – up 2.8 percent
8. Riverside, Calif. – up 2.3 percent
9. (tie) Portland, Ore. – up 2.2 percent
9. (tie) Boston – up 2.2 percent

Top 10+ states for non-agricultural job growth, comparing July 2011 with July 2012:

North Dakota – up 6.9 percent
California – up 2.6 percent
Oklahoma – up 2.5 percent
Arizona – up 2.4 percent
Indiana – up 2.2 percent
Minnesota – up 2.1 percent
Texas – up 2.1 percent
Louisiana – up 2.1 percent
Kentucky – up 2.1 percent
Utah – up 2 percent
Vermont – up 2 percent
Ohio – up 2 percent

The overall job-growth rate for the United States, from July 2011 to July 2012, was 1.4 percent. The number of jobs went up 1.83 million nationwide.

However, 12 states had non-agricultural job creation at or above 2 percent. That includes North Dakota, which has ranked No. 1 for 38 consecutive months — thanks largely to oil and gas production. However, other states are moving up in the rankings.

“California is the state that’s really climbing,” says McPheters, director of the JPMorgan Chase Economic Outlook Center at the W. P. Carey School of Business. “California added 362,000 jobs from July to July, more than any other state, placing it second on the list. It’s all the way up from 38th place last July. Big gains came in the professional and business services sectors, which accounted for almost one out of every three new jobs there.”

McPheters adds that Indiana and Ohio are growing faster now than at any other time since the year 2000. Those two states and Illinois each added more than 20,000 manufacturing jobs over the year. Ohio, California, New York and Texas are the only states that added more than 100,000 jobs total over the past 12 months.

Also, Arizona, Oklahoma and Minnesota are all on track for their best annual increase in employment since 2006.

“Arizona moved up to fourth place in the job-creation rankings, and I expect it to rank among the top 10 states for the year as a whole,” says McPheters. “This would be a big improvement over 2010, just two years ago, when the state ranked 49th in annual employment growth. Big gains in the retail sector have helped.”

As far as the election swing states: Colorado, Ohio and Virginia all exceeded the national job-growth average, while Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania were below it.

Eight states lost jobs year-over year: Alaska, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

“State job growth is diversified, with every region represented in the top 10,” says McPheters. “However, the top 10 fastest-growing metro areas – except Cincinnati and Boston — are all in the West.”

San Francisco and Houston are the only two metro areas with annual job growth above 3 percent, more than twice the growth of the national economy. However, McPheters says the industries driving the growth are very different. San Francisco had an 8.6-percent boost in its professional and technical sectors, while Houston’s health care industry experienced 6.5-percent growth over the year.