Andraya Carson (Dray Carson) is an entrepreneur with over a decade of experience in business development, operations, sales, marketing and consulting. Andraya Carson began her career as a financial advisor and quickly advanced to the position of Managing Partner for a Phoenix based, full financial planning firm, and was recognized as the top advisor each year. Additionally, Andraya Carson created and implemented training programs, documented procedures and participated in product development. Andraya Carson then co-founded a private equity firm where she led the Investor Relations division and managed the firm’s operations. In 2009 Andraya Carson launched a boutique business development firm, and enjoys working personally with small to mid-size business owners from a variety of industries, helping them identify the possibilities of their business and find solutions to significantly improve productivity and profitability. Currently Andraya Carson is also a Business Advisor with a privately held professional employer organization (PEO) founded in 1995. Together they provide best-in-class solutions that take businesses to the next level, creating a more streamline approach to managing Human Resources, and gaining access to better benefits, stress-free payroll and administrative relief. CLICK ON COMMENTS SECTION OF EACH BLOG POST TO HEAR THE PUBLIC SPEAK OUT ON ANDRAYA CARSON!
I have been doing a lot of research on cyberbullying lately because I am a victim of this situation. It is very interesting to learn how much abuse is going on, and the bottom line is that I realized that people who cyberbully are very unhappy people themselves and have to hide behind a computer to share their thoughts. I actually feel very bad for them. But nevertheless their words effect people, one way or another, and so, I am passing on this article I found for you to read.
– Andraya (Dray) Carson
ORGINAL POST: http://www.stopbullying.gov/cyberbullying/what-is-it/
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.
Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles.
Kids who are being cyberbullied are often bullied in person as well. Additionally, kids who are cyberbullied have a harder time getting away from the behavior.
- Cyberbullying can happen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and reach a kid even when he or she is alone. It can happen any time of the day or night.
- Cyberbullying messages and images can be posted anonymously and distributed quickly to a very wide audience. It can be difficult and sometimes impossible to trace the source.
- Deleting inappropriate or harassing messages, texts, and pictures is extremely difficult after they have been posted or sent.
Cell phones and computers themselves are not to blame for cyberbullying. Social media sites can be used for positive activities, like connecting kids with friends and family, helping students with school, and for entertainment. But these tools can also be used to hurt other people. Whether done in person or through technology, the effects of bullying are similar.
Kids who are cyberbullied are more likely to:
- Use alcohol and drugs
- Skip school
- Experience in-person bullying
- Be unwilling to attend school
- Receive poor grades
- Have lower self-esteem
- Have more health problems
With the start of a new year comes new requirements to abide by regarding state taxes and payroll “stuff”. Many of our clients have been asking for updates, and so, whether you are an employer or an employee, you should know a few things…..
- Register as an employer by filing Form UC-001 (Joint Tax Application). Registration can be completed online here.
- Employee Withholding Form, A-4
- Withholding Method = percent of gross pay
- Supplemental Rate = percent of gross pay
Arizona State Tax Unemployment Insurance:
Report quarterly wages and contributions by filing Form UC-018 (Unemployment Tax and Wage Report) by last day of month following end of quarter. Can be completed online here.
Wage base $7,000 for 2014 and 2015
Rates range from 0.03% to 7.79 for 2015%
New employers use 2.0% for 2015
Job Training Tax surcharge – 0.10%, not included in stated rate.
Special Assessment of .50% for 2012. This will NOT be assessed on wages in 2013.
State Disability Insurance:
State Labor Laws:
Minimum Wage – $7.90 per hour effective 1/1/14 and $8.05 per hour effective 1/1/15.
Termination Pay – Fired- pay within seven working days or the end of the next regular pay period, whichever is sooner. Quits- pay by the next regular payday.
New Hire Reporting:
Arizona New Hire Reporting Center
P.O Box 402
Holbrook, MA 02343
To file online click here
Remit Withholding for Child Support to:
Division of Child Support Enforcement
Department of Economic Security
PO Box 40458
Phoenix, AZ 85067
Report using this site
For more information on how we can help you, contact us through http://www.carsonconnections.com
Much has been said about the impact of the Super Bowl on sex trafficking, most of which indicates it is a key variable leading to a dramatic increase in commercial sexual exploitation and victimization. Recent reports and dozens of news articles strongly point to the Super Bowl as the most prominent national event where sex trafficking flourishes, with estimates of as many as 10,000 victims flooding host cities to be offered to willing purchasers intent on buying sex. While this has attracted a great deal of attention in the media and has served as a key point in the national dialogue on sex trafficking, support for such assertions has been sparse. While some such inquiries have been conducted capably, evidence supported research on the influence of the Super Bowl on sex trafficking has been limited.
With the support of the McCain Institute, researchers from Arizona State University sought to investigate and understand the true impact of the Super Bowl on sex trafficking, to further the national discussion on sex trafficking and its local and national impact as well as to develop a baseline understanding of regional sex trafficking trends for the 2015 Super Bowl which is to be held in Phoenix. What follows is what we believe to be the first comprehensive and systematic review of the quagmire that is the Super Bowl and sex trafficking and the first attempt to add clarity to a complex, national epidemic.
Source Credit: This article first appeared on the McCain Institute Website
There is always so much discourse about the condition of our country’s healthcare system. Wouldn’t it be refreshing, and perhaps more rewarding, if as Americans, we were to focus as much energy on the state of our wellness?
Some could argue that we are a rather sickly nation. According to a recent report issued by the US Department of Health and Human Services, among Americans there is an especially high prevalence of risk factors such as tobacco use, high cholesterol, obesity, and insufficient exercise, which are associated with chronic diseases and conditions such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and hypertension. In fact, 45 percent of Americans, almost half the entire adult population, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes. Even more frightening, 13 percent of Americans have two of these conditions and three percent are struggling with all three. It’s no wonder our healthcare system is so taxed.On a brighter note, however, these conditions can improve with lifestyle changes. To that end, more and more progressive employers are creating workplace wellness programs that promote, and sometimes even reward, healthier lifestyles.
Corporate wellness programs are nothing new. Traditional programs help employees maintain their health and prevent illness by providing education, fitness regimes and regular health screenings to ensure early detection of problems. Many corporate wellness initiatives even include an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to help employees cope with personal or emotional issues that may be affecting their work and family lives.
In addition to delivering positive health benefits to employees, wellness programs yield employers significant benefits as well. Successful programs have been proven to reduce absenteeism, increase productivity and decrease healthcare costs.
Of course, to be effective wellness programs have to be utilized. Poorly-designed programs can miss their mark if they don’t take into consideration the health needs and interests of the employee population. One Midwestern company, for instance, launched its wellness program by opening a fitness center and implementing a campaign to combat prostate cancer. The gym was a big hit among employees, many of whom already participated in regular exercise, but the prostate screenings were largely ignored. When the company did some after-the-fact analysis, they learned that some 70 percent of their employees were women of childbearing age. They also found that many of their employees were smokers. Obviously, prostate cancer was not a concern for this workforce, but women’s health issues and smoking cessation were.
Conversely, Volkswagen is breaking the mold with a highly-customized wellness initiative designed to take their employees’ performance to the next level. At the company’s new $1 billion assembly plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, newly-hired Volkswagen employees are undergoing on-the-job training in advance of the facility’s production start early next year. As part of their training, assembly line workers are being required to participate in two hours of fitness training each day. The fitness program, which is specifically-designed to help individual workers develop the strength and endurance necessary to meet the physical demands of their particular job, is intended to create “industrial athletes” who are able to grip, lift, bend and push without tiring. (Volkswagen has no intention of instituting a weight threshold for assembly line jobs, but some workers who initially resented Volkswagen’s required fitness training have lost as much as 30 pounds in a matter of weeks.)
Corporate wellness initiatives are usually voluntary, so mandating that employees participate in customized fitness programs so they can better perform their jobs is a provocative concept that could gain traction over time, especially if American’s persistent health issues, such as obesity or high blood pressure, make physical labor difficult or even dangerous. For the time being however, companies are doing well if they can build a wellnessprogram that permeates the corporate culture and genuinely advocates for and promotes employees’ health and wellbeing.
When creating or redesigning a program, employers should try to adopt several best practices: 1.) assess your workforce’s health needs and put them before any personal cause or passion; 2.) consider the whole employee to address all areas of wellness, including physical fitness, disease prevention and detection, and emotional wellbeing; 3.) create a work environment where wellness is pervasive, going beyond the fitness center or health fair to include snacks and drinks available in the vending machines; and 4.) consider incentivizing employees to take advantage of wellness initiatives by holding workout or weight loss contests or offering small give-a-ways for participating in health screenings.
Corporate wellness initiatives cannot fix our healthcare system, but cultivating a more health-conscious culture, not just within one company but throughout our country, could certainly lead Americans to be less reliant on our already over-taxed healthcare system.
John Allen, is President and COO of G&A Partners, a Texas-based HR and Administrative Services company that manages human resources, benefits, payroll, accounting and risk management for growing businesses. For more information about the company, visit www.gnapartners.com. Andraya Carson is a business advsisor for G&A Partners and can be reached at email@example.com for a consultation.
Unfortunately either yourself or someone you know how or will experience workplace bullying. Sometimes this may even occur after someone leaves the job, and by former employees. It is a horrible situation to be in, and from a human resources standpoint, can not be ignored. Read the article below for more information, and contact Andraya Carson with G&A Partners to see how you can help reduce bullying in the workplace.
Vol. 59 No. 10
With no anti-bullying workplace laws in the U.S., HR shouldn’t ignore the issue.
By Kasi McLaughlin, PHR 9/24/2014 (originally posted)
Bullying is the last form of workplace abuse that is not considered taboo in the United States. Although it is four times as prevalent as some forms of illegal harassment, there is no anti-bullying workplace legislation in the U.S.—unlike in England, Sweden and Australia.
You may wonder whether a concept as nebulous as workplace bullying could possibly be legislated. Won’t employees start filing frivolous complaints against people they don’t like or bosses with lousy management skills? No. In fact, most of the bills that have been proposed to date precisely define an abusive environment and require proof of harm by a mental health professional. They also allow the bully to be sued as an individual while enabling the company to preserve its right to provide at-will employment.
What Is Bullying?
Gary Namie, president of the Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI), and Ruth Namie, CEO of the campaign, define workplace bullying as the malicious verbal mistreatment of a target that is driven by the bully’s desire to control him or her. Tim Field, author of Bully In Sight: How to Predict, Resist, Challenge and Combat Workplace Bullying (Success Unlimited, 1996), defines it as a continual and relentless attack on other people’s self-confidence and self-esteem.
However it is defined, workplace bullying does not always include yelling, screaming or fits of rage. In fact, it usually takes place on a much quieter scale—in the form of exhibiting unwarranted criticism or intimidation, blaming someone without factual justification, unfairly singling someone out, or spreading rumors.
No matter what form it takes, bullying leaves people feeling powerless and confused. Some may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder years after the bullying occurred. According to the WBI’s 2012 Impact of Workplace Bullying on Individuals’ Health survey report, bullying drove 71 percent of targets to seek treatment from a physician; an alarming 29 percent contemplated suicide.
Who Are the Bullies?
It may not come as a surprise that women are often the victims of workplace bullying—but some people may not realize that the majority of bullies are also female. In fact, according to the results of the 2014 WBI U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey, 68 percent of reported cases involve women-on-women bullying.
Like bullies at children’s schools, workplace bullies are not all evil sociopaths. Normal, well-adjusted members of society can fall prey to destructive bullying tactics when their authority is questioned. They often bully because they are afraid of seeing their own shortcomings exposed. Often, they feel threatened by the abilities or career ambitions of the people they bully and opt to use them as scapegoats.
Why Is Bullying Prevalent?
The authors of Mobbing: Emotional Abuse in the American Workplace (Civil Society Publishing, 1999) suggest that workplace bullying occurs as often as it does because such behaviors are ignored, tolerated, misunderstood or instigated by the company.
People don’t identify this behavior as workplace harassment, and thus many victims don’t realize that something unethical is happening to them. Since 2003, more than half of the states have introduced legislation that would allow workers to sue for harassment without requiring discrimination based on a protected class status—and yet no such proposals have made it into law.
Finally, victims of bullying often become so worn down that they no longer feel capable of defending themselves. In fact, according to 2007 WBI U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey data, only 3 percent of bullied targets file lawsuits and 50 percent never even complain. This explains why more than three-fourths of targets choose to leave the battlefield of abuse and start fresh somewhere else.
How Can HR Help?
There are several things HR can do to help reduce workplace bullying:
Make the business case. Top management will be more likely to listen to you if you present a business case for the bottom-line costs of bullying. These costs generally fall into three categories: the cost of replacing staff; the cost of lost productivity as staff copes with the bullying; and the costs associated with investigations, potential legal action and loss of the company’s reputation.
Create an anti-bullying policy or update your harassment policy. This could be as simple as adding verbiage to your current harassment policy that states that harassment of any individual—not just those in a protected class—will not be tolerated. According to a 2011 survey on workplace bullying by the Society for Human Resource Management, 56 percent of companies have an anti-bullying policy.
Hold awareness training. It is not enough to create a policy. HR professionals must make sure that employees understand the issue and its consequences.
Establish a contact for reporting claims. Employees will feel comfortable reporting incidents only to independent employee advocates. If an employee feels that the person in whom they are confiding may have a relationship with the bully, you will never get the full story.
Promptly address complaints. It is not easy for people to report bullying incidents; it would likely be devastating if nothing is done after they’ve come forward. Employees may leave or, worse, advise other co-workers that their reports were not taken seriously.
Hopefully the law will catch up with the brutal reality of bullying. Until then, HR can help give voice to this silent epidemic by displaying compassion, developing fair policies and showing prompt follow-up.
Kasi McLaughlin, PHR, is a former banking officer and human resources manager with First Fidelity Bank.
– For complete article: http://www.shrm.org/publications/hrmagazine/editorialcontent/2014/1014/pages/1014-viewpoint-workplace-bullying.aspx
Hello all you sales people who hate cold calling!!! I read this article and it helped me, so I am passing it on to you!
(MoneyWatch) A reader writes:
Will you share strategies that work best when breaking the ice with new prospects over the phone? I have to make some 20-30 calls within a 2 hour period and most clients are rushed and hurried and I find myself racing to get to the point, leaving very little time to build rapport. How do I build rapport immediately in these circumstances? I am genuinely interested in building a relationship to learn as much as I can about their core issues so I can build proposals that directly address their objectives and needs. What’s the best way to engage them (in 30 seconds or less I imagine), which would cause them relax somewhat so they want to share information with you. If you would be willing to share this, I would appreciate it very much.
Before we get started, though, you need to be aware that there’s a vast difference of opinion, among experts and sales pros alike, about the effectiveness of cold-calling.
Many sales experts think cold-calling is a waste of time and prefer other forms of generating leads. Others see cold-calling as a last resort, while still others see it as a mainspring of any effective sales process.
Later, I’ll discuss some of those other viewpoints. For now, let’s just get the basics down. Andrea Sittig-Rolf, author of “The Seven Keys to Effective Business-to-Business Appointment Setting” is an extremely well-known proponent of cold-calling as a lead-generation technique.
When I spoke with Andrea a couple of years ago, she observed that cold-calling is all about getting the appointment. She therefore gears the entire cold-calling process toward achieving that end. Here’s a summary of her approach:
Research a list of prospects. Before making your calls, research your prospects. Look for prospects who have a similar profile to those who have bought from the past. They’ll be easier to sell. Next to each prospect, note any of your current customers in the prospect’s industry, region, job classification, or anything else that might help you to position your offering. Don’t spend a lot of time on this, just find out enough so that you can pitch using terms that the prospect can understand.
Build your script. Once you know whom you’re going to call, focus on what you’re going to say. Write a brief script (no more than three or four sentences) that introduces who you are, what you do, and what you provide. An effective script asks for the appointment early. Please note that the purpose of the script is NOT to communicate substantive information about your offering. Instead, the purpose of the phone call is to win the right to actually sell to the prospect.
Anticipate objections. Each time one of them materializes, you’ll need to handle them appropriately… and then ask for the appointment. Most objections are common to all sales situations, so you should have little or no trouble listing them out. The trick here is to practice handling objections until the response is automatic. Note: the most important part of handling the objection is asking for the appointment.
Get positive and get calling. Attitude is everything. If your offering has value to the customer, you’re doing the prospect a favor by giving him or her the opportunity to meet with you. Therefore, have confidence in your ability to provide value. That confidence not only helps you communicate more effectively, it provides the motivation that will drive you to actually sit down and start making the cold calls.
Leave a message (if necessary). If you end up in the contact’s voice-mail system, don’t despair. Leave a very brief message based upon your calling script. However, rather than setting a time for an appointment, say that you’ll be calling back on a certain date and time, but would appreciate a callback. The next time you call, ask the admin if the contact is in. If not, tell the admin that you’ve been trying to connect with the contact and would like to know when would be a good time to call.
Handle the objections. Once you’ve got the contact on the line, execute the script. Don’t read it! Put it into your own words, with enthusiasm. In almost every case, you will get at least one, and probably more, objections. Since you’ve anticipated these objections, you should respond to them as necessary and then ask for the appointment again. If you receive more than 3 objections, it’s fair to assume that the prospect is not going to meet with you, so thank the prospect and politely end the call.
Repeat the process on a daily basis. if you’re determined to excel, commit to an hour a day attempting to achieve two appointments. If it takes fifteen minutes to get the two appointments, then you can quit early. Practice this regularly and, according to Andrea, you’ll very quickly have a calendar full of qualified prospects.
This post originally appeared on BNET.com
© 2012 CBS Interactive Inc.. All Rights Reserved.
ByGEOFFREY JAMESMONEYWATCH Originally posted on: September 20, 2012, 1:49 PM
Hi, my name is Andraya Carson. Yes, I am actually the real Andraya Carson and not the impersonator that is all over the internet trying to discredit my name. I guess that I really made it in life to have someone else who I don’t even know, pretend to be me, Dray Carson, and post things on the internet. Now I really know that there is reality behind the saying that ‘just because it’s on google doesn’t make it real!’. Don’t trust everything on the internet. I personally have never ever written something negative about another person or a company that I have worked with, on the internet. As a matter of a fact, I have never helped anyone else who may be doing that type of work with negative postings. I am from the thought that if you can’t say something nice, don’t say it all at. Especially on the internet. But for some reason, someone who I don’t even know, thinks that I have posted something about a company that I worked with, and so they are threatening me and blackmailing me openly on blogs until I ‘take down the posts’. Unfortunately, there is no way that I, Andraya Carson, can do that, since I NEVER POSTED ANYTHING TO BEGIN WITH! And this ‘person’ is saying that I am involved in Sex trade, that I- Dray Carson- am a sex prostitute and have aids and other diseases, and they also name people (who I have never met) that I am involved with for these illegal actions. The irony is that I am actually an activist against Human Trafficking- Sex and Labor Trafficking, and this mysterious person is saying that I am a part of the very industry that I am against. What a joke. And their language is so poor, it’s a strange combination of painful to try and figure out what they are trying to say, and hilarious when realizing how outlandish what they are saying really is, to anyone who reads the remarks. So, for those of you out there who have the misfortune to come across this type of content, my apologies in advance for that trouble. For those of you reading this who may be actually doing that drama of posting those things- realize please that you are misguided and think this through clearly- If I could take down the ‘information’ you claim I am posting, trust me I would have. There are so many things that are important to me that I don’t have enough time as it is to do- I would NOT WASTE my time posting nonsense about companies that I no longer am affiliated with. And to be honest- I don’t have anything negative to even say about any company I have worked with. I was always in the right place at the right time, and fortunate for all experiences (good and bad) that I have had while working with various companies and persons. I have learned all along the way!