During this special episode, you will hear an excerpt from a conversation with Lane Burdett, Evan Englezos, and Liam Benson where we discuss Top Tech Tips for Small Businesses.
In part three of this conversation, we look at
Our discussion lasted for over an hour and a half as we geeked out on all things tech. We have split this into three sections and you will find parts One and Two below.
Scroll down to find all the links to the applications we shared.
Lane works with businesses to help them ‘engage’ with consumers online. Many businesses assume that a website and social media feed is what they need to start but without the knowledge of where to target and how they usually fall far short of their expectations.
He has been online since 1996 so has seen many changes in the online world both from a business and personal point of view and has given a number of talks to groups about online marketing and engagement.
The effect we have on the environment concerns me and through Social Media, I've sat on VECCI's Carbon Down Industry Advisory Council (IAC).
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Evan is a digital coach, consultant, and developer based in Melbourne, Australia. He is passionate about helping small businesses and not-for-profits to get the best out of their team and tech through digital strategy, training, and support.
Since 2001, Evan has worked in corporate, educational, and not-for-profit sectors as a digital developer, team leader, and communications manager. Now he is helping organisations focus on integrating all their digital systems to align with their goals and needs.
Evan has a keen mind for streamlining processes and systems to make life easier and save time on trivial and time-consuming tasks.
Liam works with all different corporate businesses to help them manage their IT, IT Strategy, and Cybersecurity. Liam has been working in the IT industry since 2012 and has had the opportunity to work with hundreds of small businesses as well as hundreds of statewide and national businesses around Australia.
Liam’s passion is to understand clients' pain points and solve those ongoing IT headaches for his clients as well as keeping them safe and protected in this digital age.
His burning desire is to see businesses take full advantage of IT and IT systems to enable businesses to scalability and growth. Because… Who doesn’t want to grow right?
Must-have Daily Apps
Bone Conduction Technology
Unknown Speaker 0:02
Welcome to take control with Nicole. as business owners, we experienced firsthand the fine line between our personal and business life. During our conversations, we will look at simple hints and tips to create time, reduce, overwhelm, and help you to navigate through your journey to where you want to be. If you're looking for smarter ways to work, and create space and time freedom in your day, then you're in the right place. All right, let's go.
Unknown Speaker 0:36
Hello, hello, and welcome to this week's episode of take control with Nicole. So this is part three of the conversation that I had a few weeks ago about the top tech tips for small businesses. Now, as mentioned in the previous podcast episodes, this conversation went on for over an hour and a half. And I have to say, I loved every minute of it, talking to these experts. So we've got lane, Lam and Evan, they always bring the goal to the conversation, they give those little bit of insight to how they do things. And also providing you with some information that you can start to really explore and implement into your business. Think about efficiencies, think about streamlining, think about making things just easier. You know, that's what I'm all about. So that's what our conversations have been finding those apps and those tools that you can actually use in your business. It's just kind of make things easier. Doesn't that sound lovely? Sorry. Nice. So we're gonna kick off today we're gonna talk about some IT security, why it's really important. And also, there's some really cool little things that lane brings to the party that you want to hang around and have a listen to. Alright guys, we'll have a fabulous enjoyment of this episode. I know I loved it. I'll be tuning in myself. So see what the other end Bye. For those who don't know me. My name is Nicole Smith from the artisans Business Solutions, and I assist small business owners to create space and time freedom. And I am so happy to be here with you tonight hosting this amazing discussion on top tech tips for small businesses. Tonight, I am joined by some amazing business owners so who hopefully will be coming up on the screen very soon to join me. And they are ready to share their top tech tips and must have knowledge for all small business owners. It is my pleasure to introduce our panelists, we have Evan Englezos. He is a digital coach, consultant and developer based in Melbourne, Australia. He is passionate about helping small businesses and not for profits to get the best out of their team and tech through digital strategy, training and support. Hi, event. Hello, thanks for having me. It's my pleasure to welcome. The next amazing person I'd love to introduce is lane badet. You may know lane from our last conversation we had late last year at Lane works with businesses to help them engage with consumers online. Many businesses assume that a website and social media feed is what they need to start, but without the knowledge of where to target and how they usually fall far short of their expectations. Hi, lane. Welcome. Hello, Liam, I just wanted to touch base with you in particular around it security and anything that? So I think that's you know, well, we've had many discussions around actually security and all of the importance around that. And I think that's one area when we do start a small business that's maybe overlooked a little bit. So can you give us sort of like, what's your best practice first? Absolutely. Yeah, sure, I think so.
Unknown Speaker 3:52
There's probably two or three sort of really key points in keeping your business secure. And that doesn't just apply to your computer that also applies to a lot of the apps we've been talking about today. So one of the first thing that I will always advise and stress is obviously password length and complexity is a big one. So rather than just having a six character password, there's just not a no Save as a bus or cat or something something simple, have something complex and use a just a convention that you can remember in your head. So for me, when I'm signing up for some websites, I'll use a combination of a color a thing, or with a symbol and a number. So for example, like blue cat hash 01 and when you type it, you can remember it but the complexity will that's actually very complex and in terms of I won't get too technical, but in terms of a computer trying to correct that password it will take several 1000s of years rather than if you just have a single word, it can take your computer. I think the last time I saw it was like eight hours to Guess a single word password with no characters, numbers or letters. So first things first that is really easy and doesn't cost you anything is to set a complex password with capital letters, lowercase numbers, and symbols. The next one, which is equally important, is a tool called, or it's not a tool, it's a guess more of a concept. It's called two factor authentication. And most pretty much all cloud platforms. Now you can enable it. And basically what two factor authentication does is when you log in with your password, so for my office 365 accounts and any business accounts I have, anytime I log into something, I put my password in, and then it will either send me a text message with a temporary code, or I've got a Google authenticator app on my phone, which generates codes randomly. So what that does is it will generate a code for about some are 30 seconds, some are five minutes. And what you have to do is an additional layer of authentication, you have to put this code in to keep yourself secure. And from a study that I read from Microsoft, if you enable two factor authentication on as many accounts as you can, it will reduce the chances of you getting hacked by 99.9%, I believe is the number which is insanely high. So, you know, let's say you do have a weaker password, and someone guesses your password and logs in. If you've got two factor authentication enabled, they have to put in that code which will be sent only you. So then if you get a text message, you go, Hey, hold on a minute, why is it 2am in the morning, and I'm getting a text from my bank saying, I have to put in a password. So you know what I mean. So that would be something I highly recommend for any online system, you know, emails, bank accounts, even like, click up, for example, for me, anything that's got any client data, I immediately I will more try and secure that and use two factor authentication
Unknown Speaker 7:02
layer on that. I think, you know, some people might be thinking, Oh, but it's an extra step, I don't want to do that. That's like a pain, pain in the butt. But a lot of the move is actually towards that now. So I was I've just started to had to set up some background of Facebook ads, for instance, and it wouldn't actually let me do that without the two factor are authentification on there now. So as frustrating as it might be, imagine how frustrating it would be if you get hacked, or you get you lose all your data, like you think about it from that way.
Unknown Speaker 7:38
100%. And I don't want to scare people, but cyber, cyber security and, and the quote unquote, getting hacked, I'm not talking about like, you know, people, you leave your Facebook logged in somewhere and someone opens up and post something funny, I'm talking about, like people actually logging into your emails and sending doctored invoices to all of your clients to pay bills, you know, so there's, there's a real risk out there. And a lot of businesses I come into contact with, the only time they ever want to do something of cybersecurity is if they've had a cyber breach. And then they're like, okay, we need to fix this, we need to fix it. Now, you don't want to leave it till it's too late. Because there can be a lot of damage done. And even for a small micro entrepreneur or you know, to man organization or to user or to staff organization. If information falls into the wrong hands, because you haven't put necessary security protocols in place, it could have a very bad outcome in terms of possibly legal, legal things happening, you know, negligence, a whole bunch of other stuff. So yes, it may be a pain, but in this digital age, it will save you so much time, money and heartache and stress. If you enable those, those two things, having secure complex passwords, and having two factor on it will save you a world of pain. And then the other one, which is also important as well, is where you can take backups of your information because like if you don't have backups, once it's gone, it's gone. Whereas if you have backups, you've always got a point to go back to. And something that was drilled into me very early on when I started my it career was if you're going to make a change, or you're going to do something, make sure you have a backup because if it goes wrong, you've got something to go back to and I have very early on had my fair share of stories where I haven't done that and things have gone a little pear shaped. And it's just proving the point of having a backup so I
Unknown Speaker 9:39
spent hours on that Excel spreadsheet and it's beautiful and all of a sudden it disappears. Yes. If you haven't saved it and
Unknown Speaker 9:48
Yes, yeah, well no, you say that but I actually one of my clients is a chiropractor and he was he worked on an Excel spreadsheet for I think four days he was compiling a list of all his previous patience for like 10 years, across dif different systems. And he calls me and said, hey, I've done something and all of my data is gone. The last four days is all is all gone? What do I do, I was like, lucky for you, I've got backups enabled. So let me go back and find it for you. And then found it and restored, it took me maybe 10 minutes to do, but it's saved him for constant days of work. So,
Unknown Speaker 10:22
you know, and Liam, you know, we've obviously spoken about backups, because you know, I'm all about that the in your business, but not relying just on like, you know, office 365, cloud based, Google's cloud based, you know, everything's cloud based. And we all know the cloud somewhere out there in the world just to serve us sitting in a room. But it's not being relying that that they are doing their due diligence and backing up their things, you know, like, even the big, big guys have their day in the sun that didn't wasn't a Google who crashed not that long ago, it was a massive big,
Unknown Speaker 10:57
Microsoft has had some issues, the last couple of months where things have not gone well, I don't think people have lost data, but it's caused a lot of disruption. And yeah, just on that point, Nicole, for office 365. From what I know, they only hold like backups of your data for 30 days. So if you have a document from six months ago that it gets deleted, say today, you only figure that out 32 days from now, or you know, two months from now, that document is gone, and you can't get it back. That's something that they don't tell you. And it's very, very deeply in the fine print that no one seems to read to be honest. But having a but having a backup utility or backup software to backup, you know, office 365 and G Suite is, again is a lifesaver if something goes wrong. Another story really quickly, I dealt with a client who had a disgruntled staff member who was deleting documents about eight months before they were actually fired or let go. And they didn't know about it until three months after they got rid of the staff member. But luckily for them, they had backups going that far back. And we were able to restore everything. So yes, backups are incredibly important. And, and backups for like office 365 and G Suite are very, very, very easy to set up. If you find a product, there's a couple of them out there. One of them's by a company called sky kick. And the other one is called backup of fire by daddo. They're very easy to set up all you do is you set up your account, he then login and then you authorize access to your company's data. And then that's it. It'll just keep backing up for you. And you really don't need to worry about it from that point on. But backups cannot stress cannot stress how important backups are.
Unknown Speaker 12:52
So homework for everyone tonight is check you to two factor authentication. And if you don't have a backup go and have a look at those ones that Liam have said, if you take anything away from that your daughter, your daughter integrity, and your daughter is so it's your business. So that's so important to make sure that you're looking after those things. Diego for lane,
Unknown Speaker 13:14
just gonna say off the back of what Liam said about passwords. I used last Bob, we've traditionally use LastPass to generate random passwords of say 1618 characters, whatever it may be. of the clients accounts that I've ever had hacked with email, I think I've had five clients accounts hacked. And guess what all five had in common? Really, really bad passwords? 101. Exactly. The party's name and birthdate or something and yeah,
Unknown Speaker 13:44
all the company name. That's a good one.
Unknown Speaker 13:48
I've got two clients at the moment who have that and I just, yeah, that's it.
Unknown Speaker 13:58
That's not all of that is really, really integral. I think, you know, looking after that stuffy business and just thinking a bit smarter in the way that you create those passwords. Remember, if you're using a thing like LastPass, you don't have to remember old variations, because it's going to save in there. However talking about backups of data, you probably want to be taking a backup of your last boss so that you've got all of your passwords because again, that's a third party software, we don't know what's going to happen. We have no control over that over the data when it's when it's outside of our remit. So okay, well, I think we are almost at an hour and a half, which is exciting, because this is where I'm loving this conversation. And everyone in the comments seems to be as well. Thank you. There was a chat, comment. Just we probably don't have time to come to that but I might get we'll have a go in the comments to try and help you through that. So before we wrap up, I just like everyone to share their must have daily app that you know creates time in All day from using I know minds click up. So I'm gonna go first.
Unknown Speaker 15:06
What about you, Evan?
Unknown Speaker 15:07
What do you go for?
Unknown Speaker 15:09
Yeah, so again, Pluto is is my jam, it's open every day. I still use Trello, even though I say not only as much anymore, but I just find that really easy to map out what my objectives are for the week, and then put on there, who I'm delegating them to, and which day of the week I'm going to work on. So I get roughly about two to three of those items done each day. So just helps me to focus on what the most important priorities for me are. And in that way of focusing, then I'm not going to get as sidetracked with other things.
Unknown Speaker 15:47
I'm going to try and talk you over to click up, I reckon you'll love it. But that's another conversation. Lane, go for it. Let's see,
Unknown Speaker 15:54
let's, um, click up as we've had any doubt. The other thing and this is going to sound exceptionally basic, but that's me in some in some ways. Purely my Google Calendar, I find and my memory can be that bad that it's not in my calendar, it doesn't get done. So I know how simplistic that sounds. But yeah, I've just so you know, anytime anyone's asked, Can we do this? Or can we do that, whether it's my daughter or a client, I'm like, give me a minute. And you know, I'm serious. I'm checking the calendar. And again, if it's not in there, you know, it just doesn't happen. So it's just a matter of making use of, you know, those tools. And they can be, as I said, something as basic as that. A lot of people just still still don't do it enough.
Unknown Speaker 16:37
The electronic online calendars, that's been for me, that's a no brainer, but it's not in the calendar, then it's not happening, right? It's not scheduled is not happening. And just on integrations, Google Calendar and click up, they love each other, they talk to each other, they've just launched the mail as well. So if you haven't either yet, but it looks pretty exciting. 365, but I will. But even when you're planning in your day, those are priority items that you need to do, having it in calendar view can show you what your meetings are, and then you can actually schedule Okay, I've got an hour block here, this is the task I'm going to work on. So you're really getting those systems to start talking. And you're working with each other, rather than just you know, moving from one to the other. Yeah, so Liam, what's your favorite?
Unknown Speaker 17:23
Brilliant? To be honest, I would say I'd agree with Layne that I my my favorite, I guess thing or tool would be my calendar. As you mentioned, the call for me if it's not on my calendar does not exist. So if someone wants to have a coffee with me or catch up, I would ask them, can you please send me a meeting invite, so I remember it. And then basically, that helps me when I get calls. Because this happens a lot. I'll just get a call from a prospect or something like, hey, I need help, or I need this. When can you come out? When can you do this? If it's in my calendar, I know exactly what my week looks like. And I can be on top of my tasks. The other thing is, it's a bit unconventional, but I actually carry around a leather notebook and a pen. And basically, if I'm sitting somewhere and I need to write something down that book is everything to do with my work and what I need to get done. I take notes on my phone sometimes. But for me, I will sit down at the start of the day. And just take a couple of notes on a few things I wanted to get done or things to remind me or, for example, if I'm sitting in a client meeting, and they've got stuff I need to do, or they want me to do something, I'll write it down. And then I know at least when I sit down at my desk and go right, what do I need to do today? You know, I've got a, I've got 29 or 20, maybe five appointments in my calendar. I've got some time let me put these bits in here and there and move them around. So that's, that's, that's my thing,
Unknown Speaker 18:45
I guess. Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 18:47
I love it. I think there's no right or wrong way to how you plan your day and how you record your information. I think the key thing is actually getting it out of your brain on to a place right. So, you know, some of us are online people so I'm on there, you know, typing things in direct from my phone. But yeah, having I also have many colorful sparkly notebooks as well. So
Unknown Speaker 19:14
yeah. Oh, there you go. There's yours.
Unknown Speaker 19:16
Am I the only one here not using paper? No. I tell you so much paper that I have in front of me. Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 19:24
I'm sorry. One more thing, you know, obviously last year was last year and that's all fun and games, but we would have seen some businesses that have really taken a transition to the online space and really, you know, embrace that. Lane. I know you were talking about that earlier. Can you share what you were talking about with examples.
Unknown Speaker 19:50
I've got a couple of clients who are in industries that you wouldn't think would normally pick them up put it there industry industries that you normally wouldn't think are overly progressive in the way that they deal with clients. So one of them is a personal trainer. And she's I was gonna say it was but anyway being you personal training up in Belgrade, Belgrade Hello, Kirsten, so, so the reason the reason I mention this, so normally personal trainers, you know, they would obviously, maybe put a few ads out there, whether it be social media or not, they'll put a few ads out there that would go into personal training sessions. And that's it. It goes to, for example, has pivoted and is really, you know, offering her services now on online. And, you know, and found that the the, the the reach for it, obviously, she can do the sessions anywhere in the world, because it's you know, is simply using it using video cameras, which is what we're all doing, obviously, but so I just thought that was interesting. So her usage of, obviously, online users has really gone up. So it's certainly changed her business a bit. The other one is a lawyer, so a friend of mine, he actually does Haskell visits, which is obviously not normal for most lawyers anyway, some Sunday with him, but the majority don't. But what he's doing is he's looked at what Oh, how he can focus what he offers. And so he's now got a, I suppose it's a subscription based model, where, you know, the, the basic plan is, you know, you can be involved with a Slack channel, and obviously, you know, so the idea is to is to get the tribe happening and talking to each other, and so forth. And then from there, you know, you've got other levels that you can, you know, you can have legal work done as part of it, and so forth. But I just found those, and I can, you know, bore anyone to death with all the details of their life. But now, I just felt I just found it was really interesting, as I said, two industries that normally, you don't associate with being too progressive, I just thought it was, you know, it was really good to see with, you know, with with a lawyer and a personal trainer on here. So it was something I found interesting over the COVID period,
Unknown Speaker 21:51
it's definitely been some exceptional stories of transition to a new way of working I know, even in the legal space, you know, moving to online signatories. And that was a massive step, I helped a client go through a process of that last year using Adobe sign, for instance. And that's something that, you know, they weren't able to execute their wills unless they're in person prior to, you know, that change in the law coming through. So, yeah, hats off to everyone and anyone on this, this watching this live as well, who has made that transition, if you'd love to pop into the comments what you've done as well and share that with the community. I'm sure they would love that. Well, we are going to wrap it up. But in late lane, you had one more thing you wanted to share with us. I love every conversation, we have a mountain of tech stuff to share. So please share it and then
Unknown Speaker 22:50
I just post a sorry for anyone who wants to I just posted to to Nicole, Evan and Liam just just thought, well, well, I think well, he was chatting before. I've recently found these headphones, which again, was from my lower frame. Now these are normally worn by cyclists and I'm happy to put up the now I don't get a kickback from this sucker and company or anything like that. I'll put I'll put the link in there that's showing $169 I managed to get which I think was one of the older models for about 120 just a few weeks ago. Um, the difference with those and the normal hits. So for example, the headsets that Evan got has got on at the moment would be, I imagine noise cancelling headphones or if you turn them up loud enough, I'm sure that you could turn about loud enough they will cancel the noise. So these headphones are a little bit different. Now I've actually got up here but they're sitting in my car so I won't get them over. But if you click the link that I just posted it in there. These things are brilliant, and I'll explain why they are bone conduction technology headphones. If you haven't seen them, they do not go over your ears, they do not go in your ears. They literally sit they sit around the back of your head, and they sit literally just in there on the top of your cheekbone. And they actually vibrate now it sounds like it's going straight into your eardrum, but they're not having your ear. So in other words, you can if your family you can drive a tractor you can drive I assume you can run forklift, I don't have a legality so I won't comment but you know you can ride a bike and still be aware of what's happening around you. So you know I use it to listen to audiobooks if I if I'm you know, walking or a client or something you know, listen to audiobooks and listen to music. It's a little button on the side, you literally just click it my course the microphone kicks in and you know, you can take your calls. So that one's $169. So I managed to get I think that model is similar 420 recently, but if you go up to 250, which I know is a bit of a jump. They're a little bit smaller, and they're waterproof, not resistant proof. So you can actually load songs up onto an mp3 and swim with them on. I can't do with mine but with with a more expensive version. You can say I just said I mentioned that. Yeah, yeah, I'm taking
Unknown Speaker 24:54
it to the next level. Isn't it? Fabulous?
Unknown Speaker 24:58
professional service. Okay. People that are in the water all the time, like, yes,
Unknown Speaker 25:02
that's a great thing. But it just means that you know, your audio books that you sort of thing I listened to in the car. Of course, we're probably not all driving as much at the moment in a lot of cases. But this just means you can, you know, you can listen to your audio and at least be aware of what's happening around.
Unknown Speaker 25:17
That's great. Thank you so much for sharing that that's I have never heard of any of that, like anything like that before. So that's, that's really, really gloomy.
Unknown Speaker 25:24
Why when I first saw them, I yeah, yeah, I think the third time my friend teamed up with him, I said, I've got to try them on again. And I put them on, I said, right, I'm buying a pair, and I wrapped it.
Unknown Speaker 25:35
Um, so you know how we're talking about calendars before and how we're all so we love our calendars, and we need to control them. I did want to mention one thing, I'm gonna pass over to Evan, because Evan has developed this amazing tool. So I'm gonna leave it to you to explain it, but go for it.
Unknown Speaker 25:52
Yeah. Cool. Thanks, Nicole. So a slight shameless plug. But a few years ago, I was wanting to see a year view of my calendar. And none of the tools really do this properly, your Google Calendar, your Outlook calendar, that goes really good up to about a month view. But beyond that, you can't look at your whole year. So Mike, and I looked in look couldn't find anything like it. So I put together a demo of, of our year calendar. And then recently, I've had a team in the last year or so helped me build up to be much better. So it's called yegerlehner.com. And so I put it together. So you can print out a view of your year, it integrates with Google Calendar, and Outlook calendar. And we're starting to add some other third party integrations, we've got Pluto in there, of course, and looking at rolling that out for more project management tools, like Asana and stuff down the track. But yeah, it's really great for not just personal planning, but if you've got multiple calendars, you can show your personal calendar and your, your work calendar, and I overlay that with different colors, then you can review it, print it out, go back to it all that sort of thing, as well. So I've had a number of coaches who really like it, because then they can see, you know, long term when they're doing planning with their clients and helping them for some reason coaches have really liked it. So but I can help with cross department planning as well. So people aren't siloed, you can see different departments and how they overlap. There's lots of different uses for it. So
Unknown Speaker 27:36
you should check that out. You should because you know, at the start of the year, you do your planning for the year. So you map out like if you are a coach, or you have a course or a program or anything that you're running, you know, those are key dates that you need to put in that school, like my son started prep this year. So I now have to be aware of school holidays and things like that, where he's going to be home for two weeks at a time. So all of those things to have them in one space and your personal, your family, your business, your work, whatever it is one space, it's just a no brainer. So yeah, please check that out. Evan, thank you very much for sharing that. And there we go. The End of Part Three, I'd love to know, what was your biggest takeaway from the three conversations? You know, for me, it's really about picking those systems and those tools in your business that are easy to use that bring efficiency that make life just that little bit simpler. And how fabulous is your glands that evidence develops? You know, I am an organization for instance, surprise, surprise, and it is coming up. We've just kicked kicked over into the new quarters. So have you done your planning? Have you had a look at things at a good glance, or even at the next quarter glance that you've really dived in and set those goals and also not just those high level goals, but how you're actually going to take those steps to achieve those goals in your business? Well, again, I thank you so much for joining our conversation today. And I would love you to share your takeaways with us. So pop it onto Instagram and tag the artisan solutions and let's continue that conversation going. But until then, I hope you enjoy creating space and time freedom.
Unknown Speaker 29:30
Unknown Speaker 29:30
While there we go. Thank you so much for joining me today. It's been such a pleasure having you on board. Have we connected on socials? Yes, if not, please come on over. Say hi, I'm on all the platforms at the artisan solutions. So I'd really look forward to seeing you over there. And if you enjoyed today's episode, don't forget to tag me and I'd love it if you could leave a review and of course share this with others so others can come and join us next time. All right, Did everyone have a fabulous rest of the week and until next time, see you then
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