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Upwork and Microsoft Partner on New Microsoft 365 Freelancer Toolkit

The partnership between Upwork and Microsoft is a clear indication freelancing has become part of the entire workforce. This means freelancers are being used by everyone from individual entrepreneurs to small businesses and all the way up to large enterprises.

As part of this partnership, Microsoft has selected Upwork for its Microsoft 365 Freelance Toolkit. The toolkit was created to help enterprises work with freelancers at scale as an integrated workforce collaboration solution.

powered by Microsoft 365 and Upwork Enterprise, Microsoft is launching an enterprise-grade freelance program which allows employees of large organizations to access a large pool of flexible, freelance talent.

On the Upwork blog, the CEO of the company Stephane Kasriel essentially explained the perfect storm responsible for creating this partnership with Microsoft. Kasriel goes on to say the available technology, the changing work preference, demand for new skill sets, as well as the struggle to attract highly specialized talent by enterprises are responsible.

Kasriel added, “By partnering with Microsoft, we’re empowering enterprises to build effective workforce models that enable them to be more agile, innovate faster and create opportunities for growth. Enterprises can embrace workforce change by engaging the right talent where they are, hiring them on-demand in a few hours instead of a few months and helping their teams get more work done.”

The partnership was also in part being driven by Microsoft’s adoption of a flexible talent model, which is responsible for launching a new Microsoft 365 freelance toolkit.

Upwork and Microsoft Partner on New Microsoft 365 Freelancer Toolkit

The Microsoft 365 Freelance Toolkit

Building on the existing technology investment that is part of an organization, the Microsoft 365 Freelance Toolkit provides tools, templates, and best practices so enterprises can launch, execute, and manage freelance programs at scale.

The toolkit includes internal communication, team-wide collaboration, data analytics, and workflow automation.

It also has built-in product features and integrations with Microsoft Power BI, Teams, SharePoint and Flow guide enterprises through the freelance engagement process.

Agility and Flexibility

Freelancers allow companies of any size to quickly hire highly skilled professionals and make them part of the organization.

For large enterprises, this translates to eliminating the weeks and in most cases months, it takes to vet and hire candidates.

In the case of Microsoft, Peter Loforte, General Manager for Microsoft Office, said the company embraced the freelance model to “Increase efficiencies and access the expertise of freelancers from around the world.”

Paul Estes, Senior Director of Content Strategy for Microsoft Office, added, “Our journey toward embracing a freelance talent program was born out of a need to scale specific programs.”

 Availability

The new partnership is now offering a limited beta release of Ready-made Projects to a select number of customers.

These are pre-packaged projects which have been designed to take the guesswork out of working with freelancers by providing companies with detailed project descriptions, pre-defined project rates, and a list of verified freelance experts.

Upwork and Microsoft Partner on New Microsoft 365 Freelancer Toolkit

This will include six custom-ready projects featuring Microsoft-related skills such as Power BI, Sharepoint, Microsoft Flow, as well as presentation enhancement, content writing, and infographics.

Image: Upwork

This article, “Upwork and Microsoft Partner on New Freelancer Toolkit” was first published on Small Business Trends

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How can a young founder signal or demonstrate their position as a thought leader and build their personal brand, despite their newcomer status?

Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue each year and have created tens of thousands of jobs. Learn more at yec.co.

1. Create a Website

Creating a website is the first step to creating your personal brand. Find out who your target audience is and design the website in a way that will be relatable to them. Then, the work starts. You’ll want to create a blog and write posts that will attract that audience to your site. Speak directly to them, and help them with new information. – Chris ChristoffMonsterInsights

2. Share Your Point of View

If you’re a young founder or entrepreneur, the best way to demonstrate your position as a thought leader is to have a point of view and share it. The more clear you are on who you are, your ideas and what you feel is your expertise, the quicker you can start making a name for yourself. Write articles, join panels, do workshops, etc. Do as much as you can to get that point of view into the market. – Sunny BonnellMotto

3. Get Face Time in Your Industry

As a young founder new to the industry, you should do everything in your power to get face time. Whether that means attending industry events, writing a blog, doing a podcast or applying for any and all speaking opportunities, getting yourself out there and visible to your audience is a great way to position yourself and build your brand. The experience alone will help you grow. – Dave NevogtHubstaff.com

4. Showcase Your Skills

The first step in demonstrating your position as a thought leader is to build confidence, which, in turn, builds trust. Start by creating content that showcases your skills. Consider writing for as many industry-related publications as you can. As you progress, you get to expand your audience while refining your skills at the same time. The idea is to get your name out there as much as possible. – Derek RobinsonTop Notch Dezigns

5. Answer Questions

If you want to demonstrate your knowledge and thought-leading abilities, what’s a better way than answering questions? Spending some time answering questions on question-and-answer forums will quickly establish you as an authority on any given subject. – Bryce WelkerAccounting Institute for Success

6. Write a Book

Authoring a book is a great way to position yourself as an expert. As a young first-time author, self-publishing can be a great option. There are several companies that can help you get your book ready. After that, it’s easier than you think to get your work on Amazon and Barnes & Noble’s website. There are few things stronger than your own book to elevate your personal brand. – Brian GreenbergTrue Blue Life Insurance

7. Dispel Misinformation

Write often, and put the full work in to truly explore a topic. Long-form writing that is insightful and teaches something valuable is useful and helps you develop an audience. Look for gaps in knowledge or for common misconceptions about your industry, and work to dispel bad information. – Jacob Samuel AlexanderKono Store

8. Be Consistent

Post consistent and well-thought-out content on websites like LinkedIn and your own blog as well. Research should be involved since you’re a young founder, but you can also share personal anecdotes to bolster your points. Encourage discussion and feedback by responding to each and every comment.  – Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers

9. Leverage Your Passion

One way to gain a foothold as a thought leader when you’re just starting out is to find something you’re truly passionate about. Focus on finding angles of your interests that really excite you, and your genuine enthusiasm will separate you from the cacophony of other voices out there. A fresh perspective is often just what people are looking for, especially when it’s combined with real passion. – Ryan D. MatznerFueled

10. Know Your Value

There’s a reason for the saying “Out with the old, in with the new.” When we refer to fresh ideas and perspectives, this is something a young founder can bring to the table. Our world is constantly changing, so anyone can be a thought leader as long as they stay up to date with current affairs and can educate others within their field by exchanging information because information is valuable. – Stephanie VermaasThis Is A Love Song LLC

11. Keep Learning and Sharing Your Knowledge

If you have the drive to learn and simplify what you’ve learned in a clear way, your personal brand will grow. The trick is to keep learning. Sign up for industry newsletters, follow thought leaders on social media and constantly be reading books and articles. – Syed BalkhiWPBeginner

The post 11 Brand-Building Strategies to Become a Thought Leader appeared first on Personal Branding Blog – Stand Out In Your Career.

Anything about this is really important. What do you think. Let us know in the comments below.

Thanks to http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/personalbrandingblog/~3/xbXbZEdelXQ/

How can a young founder signal or demonstrate their position as a thought leader and build their personal brand, despite their newcomer status?

Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue each year and have created tens of thousands of jobs. Learn more at yec.co.

1. Create a Website

Creating a website is the first step to creating your personal brand. Find out who your target audience is and design the website in a way that will be relatable to them. Then, the work starts. You’ll want to create a blog and write posts that will attract that audience to your site. Speak directly to them, and help them with new information. – Chris ChristoffMonsterInsights

2. Share Your Point of View

If you’re a young founder or entrepreneur, the best way to demonstrate your position as a thought leader is to have a point of view and share it. The more clear you are on who you are, your ideas and what you feel is your expertise, the quicker you can start making a name for yourself. Write articles, join panels, do workshops, etc. Do as much as you can to get that point of view into the market. – Sunny BonnellMotto

3. Get Face Time in Your Industry

As a young founder new to the industry, you should do everything in your power to get face time. Whether that means attending industry events, writing a blog, doing a podcast or applying for any and all speaking opportunities, getting yourself out there and visible to your audience is a great way to position yourself and build your brand. The experience alone will help you grow. – Dave NevogtHubstaff.com

4. Showcase Your Skills

The first step in demonstrating your position as a thought leader is to build confidence, which, in turn, builds trust. Start by creating content that showcases your skills. Consider writing for as many industry-related publications as you can. As you progress, you get to expand your audience while refining your skills at the same time. The idea is to get your name out there as much as possible. – Derek RobinsonTop Notch Dezigns

5. Answer Questions

If you want to demonstrate your knowledge and thought-leading abilities, what’s a better way than answering questions? Spending some time answering questions on question-and-answer forums will quickly establish you as an authority on any given subject. – Bryce WelkerAccounting Institute for Success

6. Write a Book

Authoring a book is a great way to position yourself as an expert. As a young first-time author, self-publishing can be a great option. There are several companies that can help you get your book ready. After that, it’s easier than you think to get your work on Amazon and Barnes & Noble’s website. There are few things stronger than your own book to elevate your personal brand. – Brian GreenbergTrue Blue Life Insurance

7. Dispel Misinformation

Write often, and put the full work in to truly explore a topic. Long-form writing that is insightful and teaches something valuable is useful and helps you develop an audience. Look for gaps in knowledge or for common misconceptions about your industry, and work to dispel bad information. – Jacob Samuel AlexanderKono Store

8. Be Consistent

Post consistent and well-thought-out content on websites like LinkedIn and your own blog as well. Research should be involved since you’re a young founder, but you can also share personal anecdotes to bolster your points. Encourage discussion and feedback by responding to each and every comment.  – Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers

9. Leverage Your Passion

One way to gain a foothold as a thought leader when you’re just starting out is to find something you’re truly passionate about. Focus on finding angles of your interests that really excite you, and your genuine enthusiasm will separate you from the cacophony of other voices out there. A fresh perspective is often just what people are looking for, especially when it’s combined with real passion. – Ryan D. MatznerFueled

10. Know Your Value

There’s a reason for the saying “Out with the old, in with the new.” When we refer to fresh ideas and perspectives, this is something a young founder can bring to the table. Our world is constantly changing, so anyone can be a thought leader as long as they stay up to date with current affairs and can educate others within their field by exchanging information because information is valuable. – Stephanie VermaasThis Is A Love Song LLC

11. Keep Learning and Sharing Your Knowledge

If you have the drive to learn and simplify what you’ve learned in a clear way, your personal brand will grow. The trick is to keep learning. Sign up for industry newsletters, follow thought leaders on social media and constantly be reading books and articles. – Syed BalkhiWPBeginner

The post 11 Brand-Building Strategies to Become a Thought Leader appeared first on Personal Branding Blog – Stand Out In Your Career.

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Thanks to https://www.allbusiness.com/hot-consumer-trends-for-2019-119810-1.html

In partnership with Simply Business

5th in a series of articles exploring how to make 2019 your business’s best year yet.

By Rieva Lesonsky

Whether you’re a startup entrepreneur looking for the newest ideas to start a business or an existing small business owner trying to grow, you need to know about 2019’s hottest industries, ideas, and markets.

Targeting your market

A lot of the trends driving today’s markets are specific to demographics. If you own a business with a physical location—or plan to start one—first make sure your targeted demo lives in the area. You can get that info from the local chamber of commerce or the U.S. Census Bureau.

Weddings

By their sheer numbers and purchasing power, millennials are the demographic almost no business can afford to ignore. Ranging in age from 19 to 37, the 84 million millennials in the United States impact most aspects of American life.

Weddings are already a $72 billion industry, and it’s sure to grow as younger millennials approach the median age of first marriage—29 for women and 31 for men. So many industries, from retailers to restaurant owners to wedding planners, stand to benefit from this wedding boomlet.

Millennial parents

Millennials are today’s parents—51.2% of households with children under age 18 are headed by millennials. Parents are big spenders, spending $1 trillion annually. For the first time in U.S. history, women in their 30s are having more kids than those in their 20s. This is good news for business owners, since parents in their 30s and 40s have more money to spend on food, furniture, clothing, décor, and toys for their kids.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) says subscription services “which offer both convenience and the chance to discover new products and brands are a big draw for these young parents, [who] are about twice as likely to use a subscription service as other generations.” More than one million millennial women become new mothers every year, and since so many millennials are still in their 20s, this is a long-lasting trend.

Nesting

Single millennials, according to the Los Angeles Times, are really into plants, creating opportunities for businesses that sell plants and plant accessories (macramé plant holders are back) or that take care of other people’s plants.

A few years after millennials get married, about a quarter of them buy a new home. While home ownership peaked in 2004, it’s now on the rise thanks to millennial buyers. In fact, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, millennial home ownership is up from 34.7% to 36% in the past year.

The good news is that millennials value originality and uniqueness when it comes to houses, and are willing to buy fixer-uppers. Between them and older generations of home owners holding on to their houses, there’s a remodeling boom going on. According to the National Association of Home Builders, the most in-demand remodeling projects are

  1. bathrooms
  2. kitchens
  3. whole houses
  4. room additions
  5. window/door replacements
  6. adding green home features (most common: Low-E windows)

If you’re a painter, interior designer, or own a home store, you know décor matters, too. The colors of the year for 2019 range from the moody blues (Blueprint from Behr and Nightwatch from PPG Paints) to earthy tones (Cavern Clay from Sherwin-Williams and Spice of Life from Dunn-Edwards) to Pantone’s much brighter, energetic Living Coral.

There’s also increased demand for home services from seniors, many of whom are holding on to their homes (82% of seniors are still home owners). They’re hiring builders and remodelers to “senior proof” their homes so they can live in them longer. They want wider doorways, lower cabinets, wood floors, and bathroom remodels to make their homes safer and more accessible.

As they get older, seniors often prefer to have others handle the maintenance of their homes. Home services businesses are in high demand to provide these services. While housecleaning, landscaping/lawn care, snow removal, and handyman services aren’t just for seniors, targeting this market can help small business owners build a thriving business.

Eat up!

Americans love to eat, so every year brings new food trends. Restaurant and hospitality consulting firm af&co. named donuts the 2019 “dessert of the year.” These aren’t your typical donuts—the company says these artisanal donuts are rising to a new level with “unexpected savory flavors and fillings.”

Food on demand (either pick-up or delivery) is also becoming increasingly popular. Off-premises dining (including carryout, delivery, drive-through, curbside pickup, and food trucks) accounts for 63% of restaurant traffic nationwide, and delivery is the fastest growing segment of the off-premises market, says the National Restaurant Association. Consumers expect restaurants to deliver food, either themselves or through a third-party service.

Younger millennials actually prefer off-premises dining—24% of them order takeout three to four times a week, compared to 21% of older millennials, 17% of Gen Xers, and 6% of baby boomers, according to the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) and the Center for Generational Kinetics.

These are just a few of the trends expected to sweep the country in 2019. Consumers are more demanding than ever, so you’ll have to work hard to meet their expectations.

Be sure to read all our “Countdown to 2019” posts:

About the Author

rieva lesonskyRieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at rieva@smallbizdaily.com, follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva, and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.

The post The Hottest Consumer Trends Your Business Should Tap Into This Year appeared first on AllBusiness.com

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Thanks to https://christianpf.com/legitimate-home-based-business-ideas-opportunities/comment-page-2/#comment-1725746

Thanks for the inspirational post. Just like you I’d love to quit working entirely and live off the income my blog provides. It definitely takes persistence and hard work, but each month when I see income double, I realize that if I don’t give up, I’ll get there.
Of course, I believe that you should start a blog for all the right reasons. My reasons are not to own material possessions or to show off. I don’t need a big house or expensive car. And definitely don’t want expensive clothes. I’d like to buy more time to spend with family and loved ones. To enjoy life’s best experiences with them, and be financially secure to take care of them during rough times. People come before money, and maybe one day I can take a year off like you did.
Again, thank you so much and you’re a true inspiration.