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In This Issue
Reflect and Refresh: Refine Processes and Procedures
Reflect and Recharge: Set Personal Goals
Reflect and Rejoice: Count Your Blessings
SCS e-xpress Nov/Dec 2014

Lets go new year 2015 - Drive to city car and rear view mirror on the road concept for business speed or success     Note  Shallow depth of field A Message from Sarah & Chris:

The theme of this holiday issue is "reflect and re-energize." 

The holiday season is a wonderful time to reflect on the past year's events and look forward to the new year.  We can use this time of reflection to objectively review the past year and identify opportunities for improvement in our personal lives, our professional lives, and in the way we do our jobs.  Taking advantage of this time for reflection can propel us forward with a re-energized attitude and new goals for the coming year.


We hope you enjoy our free SCS e-newsletter.  Please send us your ideas and suggestions for future issues.  

SCS wishes each of you a wonderful Holiday Season and a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!
Where We'll Be

Savannah, GA
04/27/15 - 04/29/15
ASPPA Annual Conference
National Harbor, MD
10/18/15 - 10/21/15
Today's Tip:  2015 Power of 3 Workshop Registration
Looking for things you can pay in advance before closing your books?  Take advantage of early bird discounts and register now for the Power of 3 Workshop, to be held April 27 - 29, 2015. Don't miss Sarah, Chris & Sal in action back in Savannah, GA. 
Today's Quotes

"There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it."

     - Edith Wharton, author      


"You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough." 

     -  Mae West 


"The worst gift is a fruitcake. There is only one fruitcake in the entire world, and people keep sending it to each other."

       - Johnny Carson


The words Merry Christmas and a christmas hat   


"Once again we find ourselves enmeshed in the Holiday Season, that very special time of year when we join with our loved ones in sharing centuries-old traditions such as trying to find a parking space at the mall. We traditionally do this in my family by driving around the parking lot until we see a shopper emerge from the mall, then we follow her, in very much the same spirit as the Three Wise Men, who 2,000 years ago followed a star, week after week, until it led them to a parking space."

         -Dave Barry, author


happy new year 2015 holiday background

"An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in.  A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves."

           - Bill Vaughan, author  

Today's Laughs

 Q. What does Santa like to do in the garden?

A.  Hoe, hoe, hoe! 

Q.  Why do people like Frosty the Snowman so much?

A.  Because he is so cool.   

The Holiday Season is a time when people get emotional over family ties, particularly if they have to wear them. 

Created by light text Happy Hanukkah and candles over black background  

                                                 Business Presentation in New York City Office     

Reflect and Refresh 
Refine Processes and Procedures     


The end of the year is a great time to take a fresh look at processes and procedures. Analyze workflow and bottlenecks and determine if a process or procedure needs to be tweaked or if a new procedure is needed. This type of review works best if you get feedback from everyone involved.  Meet with or survey the staff to get their input.  


Here are five ideas to help you get started and identify potential opportunities for change:

1) Ask employees to submit a written response to their manager on a specific issue and then schedule a meeting to discuss the responses as a group. Sample question:  "If you could change one thing about any process or procedure we currently use, what would it be?  Why?"

2) Ask employees for ideas for new processes and procedures.  Is there anything they are all doing differently that would be easier to do or would improve consistency if a defined procedure existed? 

3) Host a facilitated brainstorming session for rank and file employees and ask them for ideas on increasing efficiency within the office. 

4) Have a group meeting and ask employees to identify bottlenecks or roadblocks that make getting their work done more difficult.  

5) Assign a manager or an employee a specific procedure to review.  Ask them to get comments and suggestions from others as to improvements that could be made to that procedure.  Have that person make recommendations for changes and then discuss the findings in a group meeting.


                                               focus red word and conceptual target with arrow reflect on white background    

Reflect and Recharge
Set Personal Goals

When batteries run low, they need to be recharged. When we feel vibration in our car, we get it checked to see if our wheels are out of balance. Just like we do for our cars and mechanical things, we need to allocate time to focus on ourselves and "maintain" our own personal health and well-being. When we are busy, it is easy to lose focus on our priorities, causing us to feel emotionally drained and out of balance. We need time to recharge and re-balance ourselves!  One of the best ways to accomplish this is to take time out from our busy schedules and reflect on where we are and then set goals for where we'd like to be. Creating a long-term vision helps generate short-term motivation.


To determine your goals, begin by listing the most important areas in your life. (e.g., family, career, health, financial, friends, community, pleasure, etc.) Assess your current status in each category and decide if you need to set any goals related to that category.  A wonderful way to go through this exercise is to use the Meyer Resource Group's Wheel of Life® tool.  Each category that you identify becomes a section on your own personal "wheel of life."  Then you give a numerical rating to each area based on your current satisfaction (this rating "inflates" that section of the tire),  which will help you determine if your wheel is out of balance. Drawing the wheel creates a visual that helps you pinpoint the areas that need goals to help you re-balance. 


Here are six additional suggestions to help you establish and achieve your goals: 

1) Write your goals down.

2) Use the "SMART" method to create your goals -

Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic (or Relevant), and Timely.

3) Surround yourself with positive, goal-oriented people.

4) Share your goals with others.

5) Review your goals periodically and refocus as needed.

6) Reward yourself appropriately for achieving a goal.


Just for fun - if you'd like to set a personal goal to improve your vocabulary, click here to learn some of the new words and definitions added to the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate® Dictionary in 2014.  Click here to take a quick vocabulary quiz and see how you compare to others in your age group. 

                                                 brightly sky background on sunrise. Nature composition.    

Reflect and Rejoice
Count Your Blessings

Life is full of magical moments. When we experience something special, we can create a mental image containing every aspect of the experience - and then commit that image permanently to memory.  When life throws challenges our way that test our resilience, we can call upon these special memories to remind us to count our blessings.  In good times and in difficult times, we should take the time to focus on what is going right and on all the things in our lives for which we can be thankful. 


Sometimes people find themselves being thankful for the most unusual things. Corrie ten Boom teaches us this lesson in her book, The Hiding Place, as she and her sister give thanks for the fleas in their barracks while in captivity by the Nazis.  Click here to learn more about Corrie's true story.  


As we start each day, we have a choice - we can choose to count our blessings or we can choose instead to dwell on the negatives. The holiday season is an especially good time to remember to count our blessings, cherish happy memories, and be truly thankful for family and friends and also for loved ones no longer with us who have touched our lives. 


Click here to reflect on some of the icons and legends who passed away in 2014 and may have touched your life in some way. 


happy holidays    

from SCS


Whenever we count our blessings at SCS, we count YOU - our customers, business associates, and newsletter subscribers.  Your loyalty, referrals, and suggestions throughout the year make our jobs very rewarding.  We look forward to another year of working together with you to bring best practices and ideas for success into your office. 


In honor of all those who support SCS, we "pay it forward" throughout the year by supporting homeless shelters, missions, churches, educational efforts for children, medical research, cultural events, and other meaningful causes.  We hope each of you will pay it forward this holiday season by helping someone in need or contributing your time or resources to a worthy cause. 


To enjoy some holiday spirit, click here. 

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