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Showing Posts Tagged: Office Products

How to Prepare for a Trade Show

Oh Hiya,

Meg here and it seems that every other weekend has a new trade show on the schedule. Whether you’re a veteran of these shows or you’re new to the experience, this guide will help you be as prepared as possible.

trade show

  • Pre Show Prep- Take some time to meet with your trade show team and work out what you’d like to accomplish during your time at the show. Are you planning on introducing a new product or service? Are you trying to keep attendees up to date and knowledgeable about your company? Maybe you’re looking to scoop up a few new clients and bring your service to a new region. Be sure that you and your team have a clear understanding of your goals before you begin your time at the show.
  • Keep a List- There are some trade show supplies that you just can’t do without! I always make sure to place an order of some key items before the show so I can make sure our team is stocked and ready. On my list are Avery Address Labels to keep everything organized and clearly labeled. I also keep plenty Pilot Gel Ink Pens on hand throughout the show. There’s nothing worse than trying to take notes with a pen that’s nearly out of ink! Finally, I always make sure each team member has a Deflect-o Desktop Business Card Holder. Trade Shows are key for networking and it’s so important to be prepared with plenty of business cards!
  • Keep a Schedule- Are there certain speakers or events that your team can’t miss? Keep a clear itinerary of all the events that you need to attend. It also helps to keep a few time slots open for flexibility and down time. Trade shows can be a busy time and it’s important to put aside a little time for a break.

Need a little more inspiration for trade show season? Take a look at these tips from the Huffington Post.

Until next time, Meg

Must-Have Computer Accessories

Oh Hiya! Meg here and I’ve noticed that almost all jobs now require computers, and many of you spend all day behind a screen. In order to make those days easier and more productive, there are a couple of tools for optimizing work on a computer and at your desk.computer accessories

  1. An adjustable monitor stand is a must for me! Simply setting your monitor on your desk will likely put it at an angle that could strain your neck or eyes. With an adjustable stand you’ll be able to keep your monitor at a level that’s comfortable for you!
  1. I can’t start my day without my coffee but I’m always a bit worried about spilling it all over my desk. Make sure your daily cup (or cups) stay safely away from your computer and keyboard with a spill proof coffee mug. These are a few of my favorite heavy duty travel mugs.
  1. I do love technology but it can be such a headache keeping all the cords and cables organized and in their place. I’m a big fan of cable clips, especially the bright ones! They can attach to almost every surface at your desk and they come in all different colors to help you keep track of which cord is which. Here’s a great list of cable organizer and clips to keep all your cords in order and organized.
  1. Do you have a problem with dust at your desk? Keep your keyboard clean a keyboard dusters or cleaner. Not only will your keyboard look like new, clearing out the dust and stray crumbs will keep it in ship shape working order.
  1. Clear up some space on your desk with a Performance Mouse. Not only will you say goodbye to your mouse pad, you’ll be able to work on nearly every surface with this mouse. It’s so much more comfortable to use than a traditional mouse!
  1. My phone always seems to have a low battery when I’m working away from my desk and chargers, so I always make sure to keep a portable battery in my bag. Be sure to look for one with multiple charging ports in case a friend needs to charge their phone as well. Sharing is caring!

I hope these tools and gadgets are useful in keeping your desk in the best working order! Until next time, Meg

Keep Your Office Healthy

Oh Hiya,

healthy officeMeg here to talk about office health and office snacks! It’s great to share food, but it’s even more important to stay healthy. Break room food and drinks can have an incredible effect on employee productivity and mentality however, it is also important that it isn’t impacting employee health.

A quick afternoon snack is hard to beat, especially if it’s up for grabs in the break room. It’s usually a bit more budget friendly for a company to have a couple bowls of loose snacks like trail mix or our office favorite, peanut butter pretzels. It’s so easy to stop by and pick up a handful after a meeting or when you need a quick pick me up. A bowl of fresh fruit is another great idea for office snacking. It’s easy to grab a sugary sweet treat when the craving hits and a piece of fruit will keep snacking healthy.

A snack area is a great idea, but in an office setting it’s also so important to remember how quickly germs spread. There are quite a few ways to keep germs in check when it comes to the snacks in the breakroom. If you have a bowl full of loose snacks, keep a big spoon or ladle around for people to use rather than their hands. We keep a stack of napkins next to the bowl for people to carry snacks back to their desk as well. Keeping hands out of the snack bowl is the first step in keeping the snack zone germ free!

Another great idea is to keep a bottle of hand sanitizer right next to the snack area. Even with a spoon to serve out loose snacks, it doesn’t hurt to have an additional option. A bottle of hand sanitizer is such a quick and effective solution for keeping germs away, whether employees are making use of snacks or just staying healthy. The more solutions for keeping away germs, the better! If you’re looking for more solutions for keeping germs out of the office, this article has some wonderful ideas.

Don’t let the fear of germs keep you from enjoying office snacks. By taking a few precautions you can keep the office breakroom full of treats while keeping employee health a high priority. Remember to keep the peanut butter pretzels well stocked!

Until next time,

Meg

Life Hacks for Working from Home

WorkFromHome

Getting work done from the comfort of home is a dream come true for a majority of workers, but there are quite a few potential drawbacks. Only the most disciplined of workers can stay productive throughout a full work day while avoiding the additional distractions that working at home brings. There needs to be a switch in the brain that flips from “At Home” to “At Work” and creating a suitable office environment is the best tool to keep you on task and in the zone. Lighting, ergonomics, and having everything organized and near at hand are some of the main points that will transform your at home work setup into a productivity powerhouse. Included below are some of the best “life hack” products to keep you comfy and on-task as you build your business from home.

Keeping your workstation well-lit with natural lighting is the way to go. But you’re the kind of office warrior that starts early and ends late to stay ahead of the competition. Investing in a bendable LED Task Light will keep your energy bill low (at 8W) and your eyes happy. This Lorell model in particular bends up to 180 degrees and features a USB charging port in the base to charge up your smart phone or other devices on the fly. There is a dimming switch which offers three levels of light to suit whatever is needed to illuminate the task at hand. I recommend placing your home office near a window not only for the natural light, but also to eliminate the feeling that you are trapped inside. Let the view of outdoor scenery inspire you and keep mood levels high as you work.

As you glide around on your office chair, you’re going to want a mat to protect your carpet that will hold up to frequent use. This Deflect-o brand chair mat comes with a limited lifetime warranty and is fit to work well on carpets up to ½” thick. It’s environmentally friendly, scuff-resistant, and has a studded bottom to stay secure under heavy use. At 48” x 36”, it has a 12” lip to allow you to scoot closer to your desk if needed for extra mobility. Deflect-o also carries similar models that are specifically for use on hard floor surfaces or 48” by 60” if you need more space to roll around to get to every part of your workspace.

Having all important folders and documents organized and near at hand will be the biggest timesaver for your work-at-home setup. A low-profile desktop organizer with both horizontal and vertical dividers can hold your most frequently-used folders and paperwork, eliminating the stress and chaos that so quickly can dominate the workstation left unchecked. Safco brand has a 6 compartment option available (3 vertical and 3 horizontal) that’s made of 17-gauge steel with a powder-coat finish. This model has rubber feet on the bottom to protect your desktop surface and is good for storing any and all letter-size documents. Ergonomics, lighting, organization, and simplicity will all be themes to explore as you maximize productivity working from home and find the right office products to help get you there.

The Makings for a Great Company Outing

Oh Hiya!

company outing

Meg here and I am super excited for our annual company outing this summer! Getting to know my coworkers outside the office is one of my favorite things. Since this event is one of my favorites, I volunteered to help plan this year and here are some of my tricks for making it go off without a hitch!

First, always start with a theme. Every great party needs a great theme and your company picnic is no different! When it comes to picking out a theme, keep in mind the personality of your company. It’s so fun to branch out a little and have a creative theme.

Some of my favorite options are:

  • Luau Party
  • Christmas in July
  • Tailgate Party
  • Old Fashioned Picnic

When you have your theme picked out, planning can move pretty quickly. If you have a party planning team, it’s a great time to delegate tasks like making and purchasing decorations, organizing the meal, and entertainment. As when planning any office event, lists are so helpful! To keep track of all the things to do before the big event, I always keep my notebook and my BIC® Brite Liner Highlighter at the ready.

What’s a party without a meal? Whether you’re having a potluck in the park or having a meal catered in, it’s important to think about dishware. Since we hold our company outings in a park, I like to keep our dishware low maintenance by using Eco-Products® Renewable & Compostable Sugarcane Plates. Even at our company picnic, I want to be sure that we’re keeping the environment in mind and these renewable plates work perfectly.

Keep the fun flowing at your outing with a few games! Everyone from my company is welcome to bring their families to the picnic and we have a bunch of kiddos (and adults!) ready for entertainment. A few tried and true games to have at your picnic are:

  • Giant Jenga
  • Ring Toss
  • Hula Hoop Contest
  • Three Legged Race
  • Lawn Checkers
  • For more great backyard games and ideas check out this great list

Since we have so many games during a company picnic, it’s best to be prepared for accidents. I always keep my Saunders US-Works Emergency Survival Kit at the ready, should anything happen during the party. It’s small enough that it fits right into my bag without taking up too much space. Better safe than sorry!

Planning a company party may seem overwhelming at first, but once you get started it will be a breeze! I have every confidence that you and your company will enjoy a fabulous outing this summer.

Until next time,

Meg

Crunching for Tax Season!

Oh Hiya!

 

Meg here and if you’re anything like me, you’ve waited for the very last minute to put together your tax information. Thank goodness I have all the supplies I need in order to make this process quick and painless. When it comes to filing a bit late, these steps and tips are great to keep in mind:

1-Crunching for Tax Season via Porters Office Products

  • Stay Organized: Nothing is worse than dealing with a mess when you’re filing in a rush! To keep my timeline on track and keep my files in a row, I use <a href="http://shop doses of synthroid.portersop.com/product/AVE95930″>Avery® Easy Align Self-Laminating ID Labels. These labels are so quick and easy to print and place that my files are nearly never out of order!

 

  • Speak Up: If you have a question or are unsure about something in the documentation or requirements, ask. I think it’s so important to understand the ins and outs of filing taxes and I won’t hesitate to ask if something is a bit confusing. Better to ask and know than guess and make a mistake!

 

  • Check it Twice: Even when you’re in a bit of a hurry it pays to be sure your numbers are on track and in the right order. I always trust my HP 12C Financial Calculator. This trusty mathematic companion has never steered me wrong.

 

  • Keep It or Shred It: It’s important to keep important tax forms after you file, but some of your other sensitive documents can be disposed of safely. I use the Fellowes® Powershred 455Ms Micro-Cut Shredder for my remaining files. But before you shred, always double (and triple) check that you are keeping the correct files.

 

  • Send it: When it comes to sending off the final forms and documents, you want to be certain that your documents are secure when they’re in the mail. My favorite envelopes are these Quality Park™ Bagasse Sugarcane Envelope. When I send off my documents I want to be sure that they’ll be safe on their course.

 

  • Go Digital: I know most of my tips are for filing through paper documents but I’m a bit old-fashioned when it comes to filing! It can be quite easy to e-file your taxes using a digital program. You’ll be able to upload all your important documents to your computer and there’s plenty of helpful prompts to keep you moving in the right direction and filing correctly.

 

  • Relax- This is my favorite step of all! After I’ve sent off every document and form, cleared my desk, and organized and filed away all the extra papers, it’s time to take a break.  Whether you’ve filed through the mail or used an e-filing program, you can congratulate yourself on a job well done!

 

I hope these tips help you stay organized and on track while filing your taxes. For more tips you can take a look HERE. If you’ve already finished filing, I congratulate you!

 

Until next time,

 

Meg

Say Goodbye To Your Messy Workspace.

Oh Hiya! Meg here, to talk about keeping your office organized! Nothing is worse for productivity than a messy workspace. I know better than anyone how hard it is to get started organizing when you’re looking at a mess, but with these tips I promise you’ll be motivated to get tidy in no time!

porters-office-supply-getting-organized

  • Toss It Out- it’s so easy to keep to-do lists, old documents and papers, and even knickknacks for far too long. Take some time to go through the papers, files, and lists on your desk to sort through what you need to keep and what can be tossed out. You’d be surprised at how much neater your space can look after a good deep clean!

 

  • Check that Schedule- I’ve found myself writing one too many sticky notes with dates and times for important meetings. Pretty soon, I’ve run out of free space at my desk! Take care of those sticky notes in a snap with this adorable At-A-Glance Monthly Desk Pad Calendar (AAGDMD16632). Of course, I picked out the one with the adorable puppies for my desk.

 

  • Desktop Redesign- Chances are, it’s been a while since you’ve reorganized your desktop. Take a minute to re-organize, and redesign if you will, your desk. Switch things around to create a space that feels new and you’ll be motivated to keep it looking great. I’ve just put a new organizer, the Bankers Box Stor/Drawer Steel Plus (FEL-00311), on my desk to store my mail and loose papers and it’s made such a difference!

 

  • Don’t Forget the Drawers- It’s easy to focus on the surface and forget about the drawers at your desk. This is a full cleaning of your space, so buckle down and sort through your drawers. It can help to use drawer organizers to keep wayward paperclips, staples, and sticky notes in their place.

 

  • Keep a List- Keep a single list of all the things you have to do each day. Whether it’s a notepad or a single sheet of paper, you’ll stay organized and on task when you have a list and a neat desk. I’ve found I’m more motivated to jot down a note if I have a smooth writing pen, like the MR Gel Ink Pen, from the Animal Collection (PIL91234). I chose the White Tiger print, to add some pizzazz to my pen!

 

Now it’s time to congratulate yourself! Organizing your workspace is no easy feat, but after you’ve conquered this list, I’m confident you can take on anything. Enjoy your new workspace and remember; a clean desk is a productive desk.

Mouse Pads

A mouse pad is a type of surface that is used to enhance the usability or movements of a computer mouse. Wrist rests are used to elevate the hands and wrists from the desk to prevent aches, pains, and carpal tunnel.

There are many benefits to using a mouse pad. They provide an extra ergonomic cushion for hands and can result in less aches and pains in the wrist as well as joint pains, a common problem among office workers. Another benefit of a mouse pad is that it reduces the amount of wear and tear on the work surface. However, comfort for the user is the main purpose.

These products offer great relief to persons using them especially if they already have preexisting joint pains or are experiencing lack of sensation while operating their machines. With many different wrist shape options, customers can choose the best fit for them.

When it comes to picking a specific mouse or keyboard pad, go for what allows you to have a firm rest for your wrist. The pad must be in a relaxed position and remain there without sliding out of place. The movement the hand makes should not affect the position of the pad. The other thing to think of is what will allow your hand to operate at their normal location. Thus, the pads must allow the correct slant for the mouse to sit on. Choosing the wrist pads with soft materials is something worth considering.

At Porter’s Office Products, we have many mouse and keyboard pads to choose from. They are offered in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors for increased versatility.

For mouse pads visit http://shop.portersop.com/EnhancedSearch.aspx?clear=1&keywords=mouse+pads&newSearch=true

For wrist rests visit http://shop.portersop.com/EnhancedSearch.aspx?clear=1&keywords=wrist+rests&newSearch=true

 

Choosing A Whiteboard

Step 1.
Select your whiteboard surface. Surface type determines the usage a whiteboard can withstand, the maintenance it will require and its overall lifespan.

DuraMax® Porcelain – Heavy use and abuse in public spaces, very little maintenance

Total Erase® – Moderate use in mid size office spaces, occasional maintenance

Melamine – Light use in a cubicle or home environment, regular maintenance

Step 2.
Choose the type of whiteboard you need. Consider the purpose the board will have in your space so that you can chose a board that will truly be useful.

Traditional Whiteboard – Versatile, clear surface for jotting down notes & collaborating

Traditional Whiteboard with Grid – Subtle grid pattern on whiteboard surface guides handwriting

Customizable – Create your own surface with graphics or charts to track information

Calendar & Planner – Simplify organization & facilitate communication

Step 3.
Select a board size. Is the whiteboard going to be used by many or just a few? How big is the wall you plan to mount it on? Picking the right size from the start can help you not overspend.

8’ x 4’ – For large group use

6’ x 4’ – For mid size group use

4’ x 3’ – For small group use

3’ x 2’ – For personalized use

Step 4.
Choose a frame color. The décor and color schemes of offices vary and you want to pick a frame color that will help your whiteboard blend in. You also want the board to convey an appropriate tone.

Mahogany, Maple or Light Cherry – warm and professional

Aluminum – modern and upscale

Graphite – durable and discreet

Frameless – relaxed and versatile

Euro™ Titanium – sleek and sophisticated

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Take the Mystery Out of Mail Merge

Take the Mystery Out of Mail Merge

 

Whether it’s the holiday season or you’re planning your wedding or another big event, sending out cards or invitations can be a hassle. But we’re here to help. In just a few steps, you can create your own mailing list and perform a “mail merge” for fast, easy white or clear labels just the way you want them. It’s a time-saver you won’t want to miss.

1. Collect Your Names and Addresses

If your address book consists of handwritten names and addresses, not to mention scribbled scraps of paper and torn off return address labels, then you’ve come to the right place. When you create your single, consolidated mailing list, that’s your key to saving you time in the long run. Instead of hand addressing envelopes year after year, all you have to do is enter the names and addresses one time in your database program.

2. Select a Database Program

Whether you have different mailing lists in different programs, or you’re creating one for the first time, choose one database program you’ll want to use to enter your information. Microsoft® Excel® and Microsoft® Outlook® are two programs you might consider. Once you’ve entered your names and addresses to create your mailing list, updating your information is a snap. No more crossing out addresses in your address book every time someone moves and gets a new address. If you don’t have a spreadsheet with all of your names and addresses, you can start with our pre-formatted files for Microsoft®Excel or other database programs.

3. Download Free Avery Wizard Software or Use Avery Design & Print Online

The Avery Wizard Software for Microsoft® Office and Avery Design & Print Online are available for free. Both programs will import the names that you just typed into your Microsoft Excel® spreadsheet, Outlook® program, or other major database program, and get them ready to print.

4. Merge Your Information
Now you’re ready for the fun part. If you’re using Avery Wizard, just open the file which contains your mailing list, and click the Avery Wizard button in your Microsoft® toolbar. From the menu, select the Avery Mailing Labels product you’re using. Next, select a design template. Then choose the field names from your mailing list. This is the information you want included on the labels. Typically, the field names you’ll include are First Name, Last Name, Address, City, State, and Zip Code. And in just a few more clicks, you’re finished. Could it be any easier? For more detailed, step-by-step instructions for this part, check out our easy Quick Help guide for How to Mail Merge using Avery Wizard for Microsoft® Office.

If you’re using Avery Design & Print Online, select a text box then click Start Mail Merge under the Import Data (Mail Merge) tools. The application will help you locate your file and upload the names, then format the labels the way you want and you’re done! For more detailed, step-by-step instructions, check out our easy Quick Help guide for How to Mail Merge using Avery Design & Print Online.

5. Peel and Mail, and Away They Go

Now that you’ve conquered the task of creating a mailing list and the mail merge, here’s one more handy tip to complete your successful mailing. Use Avery Easy Peel® White Labels on your envelopes. Or, for a clean, printed-on look, try Avery Easy Peel Clear Labels. With the Easy Peel feature, it’s easy to grab the edge of the label to peel it from the backing sheet. Just print the labels, bend the label sheet to pop up the label’s edge, grab hold of the edge and peel.

Now that the mail merge is no longer a mystery, try it out yourself. Just download our free Avery Wizard software or login to Avery Design & Print online to get started. Once you create your own mailing list and accomplish the mail merge, you’ll agree that all your mass mailings are going to be much easier from now on.

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