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Some Tips to Get Organized during the Busy Holiday Season

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‘Tis the season to be busy—really busy! How can you make sure nothing gets forgotten or lost in the shuffle?
The amount of time it takes to do our job never seems to be enough. Then, the holidays hit. With everything going on, it’s amazing how we can ever keep up.

With all of the interruptions, we quickly lose track of time. You wake up and think your day is organized, then it quickly evaporates the minute you sit down to look at your email. Scheduled meetings get rescheduled, and rescheduled, again. Then, there are the emergencies, things we kind of plan for but never really can, because they are usually something that shouldn’t be happening. No matter how hard we try, there never seems to be enough time in the day.

The To-Do List

If you have one already, great! If not, then you need it. Why? Because years of research say it can improve your day.

No one wants every minute of their day to be dictated by a schedule. That feels too mechanical and boring. We aren’t machines. But, if you take the time to jot down the most important things for your day, it will eliminate any added stress and anxiety caused by the holidays.

A good To-Do List has to have realistic objectives, yet remain flexible. You will sabotage your list with unrealistic expectations. Remember, this isn’t the time of year to clean behind your refrigerator. Leave that for the spring. It also acts as a visual reminder of what you accomplished during the day or the week.

Use an App

Here is PC Mags top ten list of To-Do List apps. Some of these apps will synch with your computer or tablet. You can also share it with your coworkers or family. Best of all, they keep a record of your activities, so you can look back to see what you accomplished.

Order of Importance

Organize your objectives into order of importance. Then, check them off one-at-a-time. Having a deadline for each task can focus your efforts to get it done. Tasks without deadlines are put off to the next day. No deadline—no sense of urgency. You’ll feel more accomplished at the end of the day with a list that’s crossed off.

First Things, First

Do the things you don’t like to do, first. Highly successful people are successful for many reasons. One of them is that they do the things they don’t like doing. Why do they bother? Because, they know it’s necessary to be successful.

We avoid doing the things we don’t like to do. At the end of the day, you still need to do the thing you didn’t want to do. See how this adds to your stress?

Bring on the Holiday Cheer

Getting organized is how you can gain a few minutes during your day to enjoy the season. No matter how you keep your To-Do List, you’ll be able to do those extra things that make the holidays so special. What techniques do you use to keep holiday stress to a minimum?

Devereux Selected to Leadership St. Pete Class of 2018

nikki devereuxPinstripe Marketing is pleased to announce that senior project manager Nikki Devereux was named one of the 40 professionals selected for the Leadership St. Pete Class of 2018. The class was introduced at the LSP Alumni Association holiday social on December 6th. Leadership St. Pete is one of the oldest leadership programs in America and its six-month experience is designed to be an intensive interactive program that promotes leadership in the St. Petersburg community. Alumni include Governor Charlie Crist, Mayor Rick Baker, Dr. Vivian Fueyo, Dean of the USFSP College of Education, Luke Williams, Assistant Chief of the St. Petersburg Police Department, and many more leaders throughout St. Pete.

Devereux holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from City University of New York City College. She is also a freelance photographer and fine artist.

For additional information about Leadership St. Pete, visit www.stpete.com/lsp.html.

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It’s Time for the East-West Shrine Game!

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If you know us at all, you know that one of our busiest times of year is “Shrine Game Time,” and it’s starting now! Tickets for the East-West Shrine Game go on sale Friday, December 1, and we have been gearing up for this game for months already.

The Shrine Game is the longest running college all-star football game in the United States, and this is its 93rd year! The game is driven by the desire to support Shriners Hospitals for Children in its mission to help children in need of expert medical care. More than 1 million children have benefited from Shriners Hospitals’ unique way of providing hope and healing, regardless of the families’ ability to pay for services.

Each year, we accompany the players and coaches to the Shriners Hospital Tampa so they can meet some of the patients, play with the kids, dance, sign footballs, play basketball, and in general have a ton of fun. This day shows them why the East-West Shrine Game is “More Than Just a Game.”

Click here for tickets to the January 20, 2018 game.

Make a Charitable Donation in Lieu of a Gift

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During the holidays, we want to give gifts to our clients that resonate with them and show how much we appreciate their business. They spend a lot of money with us, so they should be shown some sort of gratitude. Right?

Finding the Right Gift

For some people, they love to shop and know the right gift for their clients. Others think of it as simply checking another box—a way of doing business. Some don’t mind spending a little extra during the holiday, while others are a little more budget conscious.

The differences in attitudes and approaches to gift giving can affect the company’s image. Here’s a good example. There is a whole team of representatives inside a company and they have their own list of clients. When December comes, some representatives like to give expensive gifts, such as concert tickets or food and wine baskets, while others are more frugal with their budgets and give a box of candies and nice card. Both are thoughtful and the right thing to do—for the individual—but not the company.

The problem with inconsistent giving is that one client working with multiple reps in the company might get offended by their actions. It’s an unintentional consequence. There are so many different personalities in a company that getting everyone on the same page when giving gifts may seem like a monumental task.

Be More Thoughtful This Year

One way you can overcome the pitfalls of inconsistency and disparate corporate messaging is to pick one or more charities and give donations in your clients’ name. But, there are some things to be aware of when getting everyone on the “same page.”

 Will your clients be receptive to a charitable donation?

There’s a lot of tradition during the holidays, and giving a gift is at the center of it. It almost seems selfish to give a donation, but it really isn’t, especially if you choose a charity that is suited for your client. So, pick a local charity or a national one committed to a cause that fits best. And, in order to avoid looking crass or cheap, don’t indicate the dollar amount in the card to your client.

A Consistent Corporate Message

It’s easy for employees to forget that the physical gift they are purchasing is actually coming from the company. This act of giving represents the company culture and messaging. It’s important that the gifts reflect the company’s mission and vision.

Giving gifts to your clients is a professional way to show that you care about them. It would be horrible to think that they had a negative experience from receiving a gift during the holidays. A great way to avoid this is through charitable giving. Who knows, maybe it will catch on. Now, isn’t that a wonderful thought?

Spotlight: Shorecrest Preparatory School Video

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a pretty magical place. When they hired us to create a video to showcase the school, we were excited. We have worked with Shorecrest for years on projects ranging from public relations to ad campaign design, so we are very familiar with their brand, the campus, and the mission of the school. We’ve also created 30 second commercial spots for digital advertising and movie theater pre-roll for the school, which helped us to brainstorm some really good ideas for this special piece.

We wanted to use this video to tell the story of the school and its culture, not just give information about programs, etc. We decided to use a more cinematic approach, with the script reading more like a poem than a brochure. We developed the script first, though we were constantly visualizing corresponding shots that would support the narrative. We started with Shorecrest’s tagline, “Be more.” We thought about what it means to “be more,” especially in the context of the education and opportunities that the school provides. We used Shorecrest’s overarching theme – Choice. Support. Balance. – as a guide for our narrative.

Once the script was complete, we started working on the story board and a detailed shot list, and then it was time to start scheduling the shoots in the classrooms, athletic department, and the outdoor classroom. This was a logistics problem that Shorecrest’s marketing director tackled perfectly. We were able to capture all the footage that we needed, plus some!

Storytelling like this is meant to be evocative. The video is certainly informative in its own way, but we aimed to capture people at a more subconscious level – in other words, we were trying to pull heart strings. In doing so, we leave more of an imprint on people’s minds – when you evoke emotion, the impression is lasting. We think that we achieved this with the Shorecrest video. The hard work, creativity, dedication, and open-mindedness of the school’s culture is truly highlighted in this piece. See for yourself!

Telling stories is one of Pinstripe Marketing’s specialties, especially when it comes to video. Drop us a line if you’re interested in telling your story; whether it’s culture, information, interview, etc, we can help.

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