MEMBER NEWS IDEAS THAT GROW TWIGGLED HAS recently been chosen as one of just 100 projects to jumpstart its Crowdfunder. Twiggled believes in creating an open and equal marketplace for everyone. Its first project is a new open source website builder (Twiggled CMS) based around the element of Drag and 22 Drop and app-based add-ons. These are the tools that literally anyone will be able to use, install and integrate within their online presence quickly and easily. There are hundreds of tools to do this, but they were never built with marketing your idea online in mind. Many claim to do this but most do not achieve this well. People will also be able to take advantage of the shared hosted Twiggled CMS sitting Twiggled’s cloud servers to make it even easier. Twiggled plans on always having a free offering on its cloud hosted version. Over the course of the next five years, Twiggled plans a series of open source tools that can be integrated allowing greater control for small businesses and the ability to start with a software that will grow with them. Twiggled started as a website design company but soon realised the tools available to most small business were resource hungry or became obsolete as the business grew. The software was unable to grow with them. It aims to change all of this, with the help of other businesses. www.twiggled.com/crowdfunder FIVE EASY WINS TO INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY WHILST TRAVELLING WITH BUSINESS WE’VE ALL been there, juggling our laptops with our briefcases, or balancing a croissant precariously on our knees, whilst taking a sip of scorching coffee. The realities of business travel can quite often be less than the glamorous lifestyle portrayed in the films – making being a productive business professional somewhat challenging in between sips of coffee, delayed trains and an out of control inbox. With this in mind, CitySuites’ Gavin Bailey, Operations Director, shares his top tips on maximising productivity whilst on the road. De-stress Business travel can often leave people feeling a little flat – not only are you in an unfamiliar environment, you’re not settled, you’re out of the loop with family and friends and the food on offer is often rushed or unhealthy. It’s time to get your ducks in a row. Get a clear schedule in place, and ensure this includes some downtime to unwind and de-stress – be it popping to the gym or just chilling out and watching a film. When the work clock stops, make sure you do too – just because you’re away with business doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy some ‘me time’. Don’t compromise Whether you’re away for a couple of nights, a few weeks or even months, your accommodation is key. If you’re not relaxed and providing yourself with time to switch off, you’ll become frazzled and far less effective. The ‘bleisure’ trend of late has become popular for a reason – more often than not, employers now recognise that inspired, valued and well-rested teams perform most effectively. Make sure you practise what you preach to your team and opt for accommodation that allows you to enjoy your downtime, whether that’s kicking back on the couch with Netflix, or catching up with a friend over a drink while you’re in town. Utilise travel time Where possible opt to travel by train as opposed to driving, not only does this provide you with time to relax if needed, you can also catch up on work emails and prepare for your stay. It’s also often quicker – reducing dead time – and provides you with headspace to nourish your productivity and creativity. Do it digital ‘Internet everything’ has become popular for a reason, so make sure you take advantage of time saving apps, offerings and deals to really maximise your productivity. From businesses like Deliveroo that can deliver your favourite restaurant food to your door, to taking advantage of apps such as Uber to save time waiting to hail a taxi and dashing to the ATM for petty cash. Whatever it is, use your smart phone as your guide – it’s a simple and effective solution to feeling dazed and confused when arriving in a new city. Live like a local If you’re staying on location for a couple of weeks or even months, it’s important to try and integrate yourself into the community in some capacity – be it striking a conversation with the local Chamber of Commerce or attending networking events. Not only will you get the inside scoop on where to take top clients for impressive meals, you will help to strengthen your network within the city – meaning you can draw on your contacts to support your business development. In short, try to ensure that business travel doesn’t mean you’re stuck in a business world rut. You can be productive and proactive whilst away on business, if you focus on being healthy, happy and structured. CitySuites is the only luxury serviced accommodation in Manchester city centre. It combines the comforts of home with the luxury touches of a hotel, providing an exceptional living experience. Opening its doors on February 1st, it is offering members of Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce a 5% discount on bookings and an exclusive opportunity to upgrade.
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