I work in the business valuation profession. Many professionals in this profession are finance and accounting majors, which is great for the Excel portion of a business valuation report. However, a good business valuation report is one that is well-written. The client should recognize his or her company from the report and be able to understand the valuation.
This written part of a valuation report is often a challenge for many in my profession. I once had a business valuation/CPA firm owner, who employs CPAs as valuation analysts, tell me that his firm sends his new valuation hires to outside writing training sessions because they are so bad when they begin.
That is an extreme situation (I hope), but it is true that good writing is a skill. As such, see this post "10 Resources to Improve Your Writing" from Lior Levin, guest posting for Lynn Terry at ClickNews! Lior says:
Writing is not always easy to master and requires dedicated practice and knowledge. The upside is that good writing skills will be a massive advantage in almost any business model, and can even open up exciting new possibilities for you.
So, where does one go to learn the skills and rules that will make anyone a good writer? The Internet has a treasure trove of writing resources. Here are 10 resources that will improve your writing… (emphasis in original)
If you want to become a better writer, read this post and access the resources listed.
I certainly missed this info while I was on vacation. I'm back now. Enjoy!
I've got to say that I'm pretty interested in Google+. It seems to solve many of the frustrations I have with social network platforms - both personally and professionally. The idea of "circles" is wonderful and sorely needed.
This short presentation from Ben Gaddes provides a good overview of Google+.
A wonderful resource for pet lovers that want to travel with their pets is Go Pet Friendly. I can personally vouch for the service and the owners since I know them. Amy and Rod Burkert started Go Pet Friendly along with their dogs, Ty and Buster. Per Amy and Rod:
We're on a mission to make it easy for you to enjoy fantastic travel experiences with your pets! It all started when we decided to take a road trip to Canada. We experienced pure frustration - and spent more than two days - planning the trip. It was a hassle finding pet friendly hotels, tracking down their policies, and locating restaurants and activites that we could all enjoy together. That's when we had our "aha" moment.
If you want to travel with your pets, check out Go Pet Friendly.
This post is courtesy of Richard Warner, ASA, AVA. Rick is a business appraiser and the editor of the American Society of Appraiser's Business Valuation E-Letter (to which I contribute 3 - 5 columns a year).
As editor, Rick also contributes content. I thought his June 29, 2011 piece was both interesting and educational and I repost it here with his permission.
The "Dark Side" of LinkedIn
So I’m a pretty frequent user of LinkedIn. More than a “casual” user, but not so much of a user that I’ve felt compelled to “upgrade” my membership. I’ve added a fair number of contacts (more on that later) and I’ve joined a few of the discussion groups.
If you’ve ever followed some of the threads on the discussion groups they run the gamut from being focused and on point to taking a discussion of the cost of capital and turning it into a discussion of Mom’s apple pie at Thanksgiving.
Recently on one of the valuation related discussion groups there was a nice little discussion going on regarding some legitimate topic. People are contributing solid comments, opinions, tidbits, and the like. From somewhere out on “la rive gauche” comes, let’s call it a dissenting opinion, that pretty much says, “you’re all idiots, and I don’t think that much of your mother either…”.
Well, that was pretty interesting. I’m not sure who polices these groups if anyone, but the response from the other contributors to the group was pretty good. Enlightened even. Who knows if the alleged “fire bomber” was even a legitimate person – there’s really no way to know, but the point is the group self-policed itself and kept on truckin’. I liked that.
I’ve seen other comments from individuals (that I know are real) who may have stepped over the line of decorum in some fashion. Other members stepped in, gave some advice (which I can tell has been taken to heart by the alleged offender) and again, life as we know it on LinkedIn continued.
So why should we care about what is said on a LinkedIn discussion group? Well, we should keep in mind these are public groups, and our comments are recorded in some fashion, and maybe we want to consider what our comments would look like if replayed to us in open court. Ouch. I suspect that there are some clever attorneys out there who now include a review of LinkedIn discussion groups as part of their due diligence prepping for a cross examination of an expert witness.
I can see it now. “Mr. Warner, did you really ask/answer this question on LinkedIn as follows….?”
What about how we manage our LinkedIn contacts? When I first started using LinkedIn it was all about quantity. Can I get to 100 contacts? How about 250? Can I reach the hallowed land of 500+ contacts? But should these “contacts” be more than an electronic rolodex stored in the cloud somewhere? I think so. Just as a relationship is more than keeping a person’s business card on file, I think (and this is strictly a personal opinion) that contacts on LinkedIn should be more than just the result of “accepting an invitation” to Link In. I should be able to send a message to each of my contacts, with a legitimate question, and in a reasonable amount of time expect an answer. In other words, my LinkedIn contacts should be part of an “active” network, or they should not be part of it at all.
Well, enough said on LinkedIn. By the way, I don’t “tweet” and all my friends on Facebook are family.