Creve Coeur Workspace is excited to present our February Tenant of the Month, Rainie Howard with Rainie Howard Enterprises, LLC!
What is your profession and why did you choose it?
I am an author, an owner of an e-commerce company, and a professional speaker. I chose this profession because I had a desire to help people. I found that connecting online inspired others and impacted lives.
How long have you owned your own business?
I started Rainie Howard Enterprises in 2013, 7 years ago.
What inspired you to own your own business?
My mother is an entrepreneur, and she was a big role model for me growing up. I have
always been creative, and a leader. After working for other companies and growing in
leadership roles it helped me grow and gain more confidence to branch out on my own.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
I am a visual artist and painter. I discovered this natural talent of mine at a young age and even obtained my bachelor's degree in art.
Do you have a hobby, play a sport, or have any special interests?
My hobbies include hiking, anything to do with nature, and traveling.
What job would you be terrible at?
A police officer
Who has impressed you most with what they've accomplished?
Oprah Winfrey. She has impressed me tremendously with everything she has accomplished.
Where is the most interesting place you have visited?
Jamaica. It is very beautiful, and it is interesting to see the diversity and culture they have.
Do you have any advice based on your area of expertise?
My advice would be for business owners to make sure they are present online. Being online in today's society is critical and it truly helps to be available to your audience.
If you could work anywhere in the world, where would you choose?
I would choose Hollywood California, because it is close to the filming industry.
How has working in a shared work space influenced your business?
It has influenced me to meet new and like minded business owners.
What is your favorite restaurant from the St. Louis area?
If I had to pick, it would be between Landry's Seafood and Brio.
What is something you think everyone should do at least once in their lives?
I believe everyone should dream big and take risks. Doing something that challenges you
can be exciting.
Who's your go to band or artist when you can't decide on something to listen to?
Beyonce is my go to!
Ice cream in coffee? Ice cream on waffles? Ice cream on fruit? Ice Cream for Breakfast Day is Saturday, February 1. We're celebrating early (...for practice)!
We will bring the ice cream and waffles, you bring the toppings! See you Friday, January 31 at 9:00am. Goodies in the kitchen, member networking in the back conference room.
Check out this list for last-minute gift ideas!
Life can get busy and before you know it, it’s time to exchange gifts!
Amazon Prime Subscription:
The perks of an Amazon Prime Membership include Prime Video, Prime Music, Prime Now, and more! You can gift just a month or more!
During the winter, our cars get dirty often with all the salt and snow grime! Gifting a fancy car wash is something everyone could use!
Tea or Coffee Sampler:
We all know someone that is a coffee or tea fanatic! There are some amazing tea and coffee samplers on the market.
Roku Streaming Stick:
Roku is easy to set up and has amazing features that enable you to stream YouTube, Netflix, Disney +, and more.
Instant Film Camera:
Take pictures and instantly print out a picture. Great idea for the photographer in your life!
Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription:
Subscription services for all creative applications are an awesome idea for someone you know that is creative.
A subscription box:
There are a variety of subscription boxes available that range from clothing, music, makeup, dog treats, etc!
The Saint Louis Art Museum offers memberships that allow early access to rotating exhibitions among other perks! It is a great gift for that history or art buff in the family.
Missouri Botanical Garden Membership:
Don’t forget about the Missouri Botanical Gardens Membership! You receive Free general admission to Shaw Nature Reserve, Butterfly House, and the Botanical Gardens!
Long Distance Touch Bracelet:
The perfect gift for someone you are close with but lives far away! When you touch the bracelet, it lets the other person who is wearing it know you touched it.
October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
I was invited by Creve Coeur Workspace to write about this topic since I’m on the board of The Arya Foundation. The Arya Foundation helps families of children with disabilities purchase adaptive equipment in the greater St Louis area.
The purpose of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is to educate about disability employment issues and celebrate the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. This year’s theme is “The Right Talent, Right Now.” So, how does that relate to us small business owners at Creve Coeur Workspace, where for many of us, the only employee is ourselves?
Even if you don’t have employees, being aware of inclusiveness issues will help with our customer relations. October is a good time to review your company policies to ensure they convey a commitment to inclusiveness.
One of the reasons I located my business here was the accessibility. I do have disabled clients and my old office space was a problem when it came to accessibility. Here we have plenty of accessible parking and the front door actually has the push button set back from the entrance. If you haven’t had to deal with a wheelchair before, you might not have noticed how great that is. Many office building doors have the open button right at the door. If you’re in a wheelchair, you push the button, then have to move back for the door to open, and then move forward again to go in the building. The timing can be off, and you can actually get hit by the door trying to enter the building. I hadn’t noticed how cool our entrance was until one of my clients took me outside to show me. Happy client = returning customer.
Besides wheelchair accessibility, what else can we do to make our businesses more inclusive? Many of us are using Social Media marketing tools. It’s estimated that 20% of the population has some type of disability which limits them from seeing our messages.
The federal government has a toolkit of tips for making your social media more accessible. Here’s a link for more information: https://digital.gov/resources/improving-the-accessibility-of-social-media-in-government/#general
Just by making our websites and social media more accessible we can increase our market reach by 20%. That’s pretty cool!
The Arya Foundation also hosts the Disability Awareness Convention. The next one will be held Sunday, February 23, 2020 from noon until 5 PM at the Purser Center at Logan University. We are already signing up vendors, sponsors, and speakers. If you would like to learn more about how your business can participate, please check out our website at: https://thearyafoundation.org/dac2020
Roberg Tax Solutions
Microsoft Outlook is the most used Email Service in the Business World. If you have thousands of unread emails in your inbox, or cannot find old emails when needed, you might need to organize your Inbox! Here are some tips to help make using Microsoft Outlook an enjoyable experience for you!
1. Quick Parts
Do you always type some of the same verbiage in some of your emails? Cut off the time spent of typing all of it up by using Quick Parts! While drafting an email, go to the Insert Tab > Text Section > Quick Parts. In the drop down, you have the option to insert an already saved text, or you can save text to use. To save the text, highlight the chunk you wanted saved and click Quick Parts > Save Selection. You can save the formatting that you have, and how you want the text to be pasted in the future.
2. Folder Organization
Your email will always have a couple standard places you commonly use – Inbox, Outbox, Drafts, and Sent Items. You can expand that list and organize it by creating more folders! On your Home Page, go the Folder Tab and click New Folder. You can create a folder that will help you organize your emails so you can reference them faster. For example, try using a To-Do folder do you have short list of emails that require a task to be done, or an Important folder to hold emails you need to reference back to. After you have these folders, you can create rules for incoming emails to be filed away, but we’ll get to that later.
3. Clean Up
Many times, we get emails that are duplicates or redundant and can clog up your inbox. While in your inbox or in a folder, you have the option to use Clean Up. There are two ways to access this function. On the Home Tab > Delete Section > Clean Up, you can find the option to clean up the current email thread you are in. If you go to the Folder Tab > Clean Up Section, you can find multiple ways to help manage your inbox with a click of a button!
4. Email Rules
Did you know you could set up incoming email to be placed right into the folder you want it to go to? While viewing an email, in the Home tab, find the Move section and click Rules. Click Create Rule and then go through the prompts to complete the rule. You can have the rule set by the sender, or by the subject line. To manage your existing rules, click the same Rules drop down and click Manage Rules and Alerts.
5. Keyboard Shortcuts
Instead of clicking through endless menus to find what you need, use Keyboard Shortcuts to complete tasks quicker in Outlook! Here are some of the most commonly used shortcuts:
New Message: Ctrl + Shift + M
Send: Alt + S
Search: Ctrl + E
New Task: Ctrl + Shift + K
Additionally, pressing Alt + H while on the home page will give you a little guide of different shortcuts you can select:
Using these tools and tricks can make your Outlook inbox more manageable and efficient. Have fun cleaning up those inboxes!
Sharing the working space has had untold benefits. Having other small business owners, and other employees from many different types of businesses has kept Robin, Tammie and I connected. Being in a space with other lawyers, many of whom are solo or small firm practitioners has also helped. Melissa, and her prior colleagues have reminded us of what a great receptionist is capable of, making a really great first impression.
This June, we’re celebrating Workplace Well-being Month to introduce more healthy choices and activities into your workday! Whether you work from home or work in an office, here are some ideas to help you focus on your well-being!