Tips for Music Professionals 40 and Under Series: Management & Operations
Key management and operations strategies from "40 Tips for Music Professionals 40 and Under"—a NAMM U session presented at The NAMM Show 2013. The session was hosted by Ryan West (pictured), Cris Behrens and CJ Averwater of NAMM YP (Young Professionals).
Use this as a checklist, and share it with your employees.
1. Take advantage of ÜberConference. It's a free conference calling service for up to five people.
2. Use Google Analytics. Whether you're an e-tailer, manufacturer or hosting a retail brochure site, Google Analytics is your friend. Google Analytics has great information about your customers and how you can improve your business. You don't need to hypothesize on why things are or aren't working—the data is there, and it's free. The Google Analytics blog is also great.
3. Try TextExpander (for Mac) or Breevy (for Windows). Stop wasting time typing the same things over and over again. You can always copy and paste, but why not save a step and use a shortcut that pastes the text and even adds dates, times and so on? It's like signatures on steroids.
4. Get 9 Essential Skills for Excel and Learn Word Perfect by Danny Rocks.
5. Read Retail Truths by Chip Averwater. To survive, music retailers have to learn lots of critical lessons. Even though some can be learned in business school, most come only with experience in the school of hard knocks, where tuition is high and lessons are brought home with a punch to the gut.
6. Take advantage of Hipmunk.com. It lets you compare airfares by price and "agony level"—the number of connections and time between connections. This is not only a money-saver but also a timesaver. And, as we all know, time is money.
7. Use TripIt. Whether you travel a little or a lot, being able to monitor flight status and keeping all of your travel info in one place is helpful. You simply forward your email confirmation to an email address, and TripIt adds it to your account.
8. Check out Yamaha Paragon (yamaha.com/paragon). It's an insane collection of free tools: dealer media, product training, social media tracking, QR code generation, order entry, invoice management, sales demo tools—the list goes on. Yamaha has built a neat platform to manage everything.
9. Also, go to The Yamaha Hub. Yamaha launched the original Hub back before podcasts and YouTube existed, and the site has been evolving ever since. The new Hub adds social media feeds and all sorts of updated content focused on how fun it is to be a music lover, musician and educator—kind of like Yamaha Pinterest.
10. Watch videos at TED.com. It features great talks that inspire on a variety of subjects.
11. Join NAMM Young Professionals (YP) and/or Generation Next. Participating in sharing groups is one of the best things you can do. You can learn from books and podcasts, but nothing's better than talking with others who've been where you are—or are in the same spot you're in right now.