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10/31/2007
08:55 AM
Keith Ferrell
Keith Ferrell
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Security Threats Meet Business Treats

Having written so much about the horrors small and midsized businesses face for our two-part Halloween business terrors feature, I couldn't resist the temptation to give some thought to technology treats.

Having written so much about the horrors small and midsized businesses face for our two-part Halloween business terrors feature, I couldn't resist the temptation to give some thought to technology treats.In fact, the more thought I gave the matter, the clearer it became that the "dark sides of business technology" are more than matched by the bright side of business benefits.

Here, then, my pick of half a dozen gifts tech gives our businesses -- every one of which has, to be sure, its trick-side, but any one of which just as surely is a treat:

1. Technology lets you live your life as well as run your business  those (protected and secure!) mobile devices keep you on top of things all the time on vacation as well as in the office. And you can take longer vacations  as long as youre connected, why not join that conference-call from the beach rather than the boardroom?(The trick side of this one is that your customer know how connected you are: be careful lest youre on call 24/7/365.)

2. On the Web nobody need know youre a small business  as long as you dont misrepresent yourself or overpromise what you can deliver, the right combination of Web site and Web marketing lets you soar above the competition up where the customers surf!

3. You can get your face and your personal insights and ideas out there  blogging and other networking tools let you tell it like you see it (within business reason) and do so with as much reach as any mega-corporation, and without having to slice and dice your way through bigbizs big bureaucracy.

4. Collaboration and teamwork take on whole new levels of meaning  and business benefit. One key to any small or midsized businesss success is teamwork. And team-building has never been easier or richer than with the right array of software and communications tools on your network.

5. IT hasnt brought about the death of office drudgery, but it has vastly diminished the burdens of routine chores  filing, copying and sharing information among departments, records- and bookkeeping. Enter it once  then do with it what you will, and whatever you need to.

6. Sophisticated and powerful technologies cost less than ever  letting you do more, accomplish more, reach for more business while holding onto to more of your IT budget which youll need to apply to security measures against the monsters that are likewise benefitting (if thats the word) from the drop in tech costs and the climb in tech power.

And one more -- being your own boss, or at least being free from the corporate chain gang, lets you take the occasional moment for yourself, Just a bit of time to, say, take another glance at our Halloween business fears feature, Part One and then -- go ahead! -- Part Two.

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