How Much Do Senior Portraits Cost

If theres one question nearly everyone asks this is it. How much do senior portraits cost? The trite, sarcastic answer would be, If you really like pictures and youre going to miss your son or daughter like crazy when they go off to college, senior portrait are cheap. If you never take pictures yourself and you for-see your child living in your basement until theyre 35; senior portraits are outrageous. Truly, a great deal does depend on your point of view.

Most studios will charge a session fee. Some have just one flat fee and others, like our studio, have three different sessions that differ basically by length of time. The session fee covers kind of the photographers time to take the pictures and process the images for you to view. Quite honestly our session fees dont come close to covering the time it takes to photograph a senior, process the images, do some initial retouching and prepare the first view images for the client to see.

Many studios view the session fee more as a guarantee youll show up. Dont get me wrong, I know YOU wouldnt blow someone off but think about it; if theres no up-front session fee to guarantee your spot in the studios calendar, if you had nothing invested and the day of your session came and it was beautiful and sunny and all your friends were going to Valley Fair where would you want to be? Riding the Wild Thing or stuck in a dark studio listening to a 52 year old guy with a beer gut tell bad jokes? If theres money on the line Mom and Dad are going to be sure you show up – with bells on.

Studios session fees in southern Minnesota range from a low of probably fifty bucks to a high of $300 or more. Our studio charges $100, $150 and $200 for respectively, a one hour, an hour and a half and a two hour session. But hardly anyone pays full price for the session.

Studios often run session sales early in the year to start the business flowing. At d. holmes meir studios we have our big 12 hour sale in May and if you book your session for sometime in June youll save 75% on the session fee. In July you save 50% and August nets you a 25% savings. Youll probably find similar sales at most other studios in the area.

With respect to the portraits themselves it will vary a great deal on the number of friends and relatives youll want to gift with your images. At some studios youll spend less than $300 while at others youll invest $1000 or more. Its important to remember that like anything, all portraits and all photographers are not created equal. If youre not a fan of surprises you will want to do research and ask lots of questions as to what is and isnt included in a studios portrait pricing.

Chances are most studios will offer both package as well as a-la-carte pricing options. Packages are almost always cheaper often so much so you may be better off from a money standpoint – to buy more pictures in a package than you really need. No one likes waste but better to waste a little paper than a lot of money.

The most important question you need to ask are whether or not the final images will be retouched and to see examples of retouched images. Many people in this day and age just assume all photographers retouch their portraits nothing could be further from the truth. So look closely at the sample images on a photographers website which one would assume is their best work. If the skin tones are icky, if there are obvious blemishes and imperfections is it reasonable to assume your portraits would be any different?

How To Create A 30-60-90-day Business Plan To Use In A Non-sales Interview

Can you use a 30-60-90-day plan for non-sales jobs? Of course–it works for marketing, project management, technical support, and many others. For instance, I got a call from a candidate going for a job in Marketing Communications. He had a 30-60-90-day template, but needed help translating it into a document for a non-sales job like the one he wanted. We spent a few minutes brainstorming together, and came up with some ideas and new directions that I also wanted to share with you.

To begin with, remember that there are objectives you have to achieve in every job. They aren’t all achievable in the first 30-60-90-days (or even in the first 180 or 360 days), but even with a really long-term objective, there should be some kind of break down of what needs to be done when, and certainly at least some of them can be taken care of within the first 30-60-90 days. So, for example: if you are in Marketing Communications, and you’re supposed to be building to a complete product launch in 9 months, there are some things that can be listed out to be done in the first 30-60-90-days in order to set yourself on the path to success and prosperity. Those are the objectives that you would use in place of sales objectives.

The same types of communications happen in many kinds of jobs – just not necessarily with customers. Instead of meeting with outside customers (as in sales), you might have more internal meetings, or you might be meeting with external vendors. For example, if you’re an events coordinator, you’re going to have to go on sites, request and review bids, share those with the sales staff perhaps, and have a plan for what needs to be done when.

Other possibilities for objectives to include in your 30-60-90-day plan: training, site visits, or learning company systems. There are many ways to tailor a 30-60-90-day plan to whatever job you’re interviewing for. Also, learning enough about the job to put one together will be helpful to you when you ask your own questions in the interview, because you’ll start off with more information than the average candidate.

The point to keep in mind is: Creating a 30-60-90-day plan shows initiative, preparation, written communication skills, and that you’re interested enough in this job to have done your homework. That’s always impressive to hiring managers.

Get Some Useful Information On Risk Transformation

In the United Kingdom, the fact that risk culture has become the focus of speeches and delivering presentations by regulators. This possesses culminated within APRA reinforcing the benefit of risk culture in new recommended prudential restrictions for financial services institutions.

We all help our own clients realize their portfolio view associated with risks, amplifying the implications associated with key pitfalls across the team, division and also operational ranges. Through this process we try to deliver the clearest understanding of the fundamental risks that affect the achievement associated with strategy and how strategic outcomes may vary under various operating scenarios.

At Crucible Risk Consulting our risk transformation team may transform the best way organisations strategically and holistically approach and benefit from risk administration through a strategic approach to analyse facts and increase organisational risk management. We review exactly how organisations can revisit their own business models whilst improving operational effectiveness and be more buyers centric.

Culture plays a crucial role in just how an organisation handles risk. However, some people remain sceptical associated with something as intangible seeing that culture as well as more importantly, they just doesnt know how to understand and influence mindsets as well as behaviours across a business.

Effective risk management supplies a broad outlook on upcoming opportunities without losing sight of the possible risks available. In accomplishing this, a powerful risk managing function efficiently manages shareholder expectancy and individual confidence even though maintaining a sharp focus on risk.

We have now helped industry leaders optimize credit risk reporting, set way up group risk departments and design earning models, among various other services. We also help clients to determine technical and organizational requirements for information protection solutions and also develop business techniques and policies related to controlling access to help data. Our group will support developing data protection methods, architectures and enactment plans.

Our aim has become to combine this while using similarly long-standing treatment method of risk like a social construction, to become a view which in turn risks become transformed from one kind to another, over time, as both worlds and our comprehension of IT change. The study used several key informant job interviews and observations in technical meetings.

The important thing to risk transformation is therefore to put it to be a key enabler of your business using a process that’s well comprehended, fully embedded in the industry and successful and effective to utilize. Our program targets are to ensure that only the minimum degree of risk is taken with information property while even now allowing the business to match its targets.

Business Transfer Agents Time The Government Cracked Down On Rogue Operators Who Demand Money For N

Hit by the recession or maybe just retiring or moving on, there are countless owners of small businesses whod like to sell up.

Business transfer agents are supposedly there to help them find a buyer.
But today I lift the lid on a string of them who demand huge fees even when they fail to get a sale, and then sue clients who refuse to pay up.
Rip-off 1: Judge backs family over firms one-sided contractVerdicts on business transfer agents dont often come much more damning than this.

The case involves one of the most notorious firms in this field, RTA Business Consultants.
It failed to find a buyer for a family-run car parts firm but still demanded payment.
When the owner, 70 Celine Pas Cher ( -year-old Andrew Rothery, refused to cough up, RTA sued.
And lost spectacularly.
Its rep Jen Leary bragged she could value a business to the penny but got the price of Mr Rotherys firm wrong by 700,000, Halifax County Court was told.
She lied that she could sell West Yorks firm Holmfield Auto Spares for 1.3m and persuaded Mr Rothery to sign a contract to pay 5,000 plus VAT for marketing, followed by commission on sale.

Suspicious of the high price put on his firm, Mr Rothery had two reputable business sales agents value it and they came up with a figure of 600,000.
So he refused to pay RTA, which sued him for 10,000 in supposed unpaid fees and lost commission.
Deputy District Judge Keith Nightingale threw out the case and was scathing about RTAs terms.
He said: The contract, it seems to the court, has clauses which are wholly one-sided and quite frankly it is a document that does not seem fair or balanced whatsoever.

Mr Rothery and his son Gavin were delighted.
It was the ignorant bad-mannered attitude of the people at RTA which made me determined not to give them money when they had not earned it, he told me after the case.
Ive been in business for 42 years and have dealt with lots of people who want to take money for doing very little.
RTA is one of them.
And Mr Rothery is not the only one to think so.
Andy Stenning / Daily Mirror Trubunal: Paul O’Reilly of RTA

An extraordinary insight to RTA came at an employment tribunal this month.
Former senior salesman Howard Rowlands told the hearing that the boss, Paul OReilly, threatened to punch him in the f***ing face in a row over the firms ethics.
Mr Rowlands said Mr OReilly was ranting and raving.
He said: I spun around and left the office as quickly as possible, I just wanted to get out of there. I felt threatened, seriously threatened.
Mr Rowlands also told the tribunal in Manchester that sales director Paul Mitchell explained how they would make money from a typical business seller, revealing: We want to stitch him up with the withdrawal fee.

Mr Rowlands said: I didnt do fraudulent contracts, thats what caused the animosity. I questioned the ethos and morality.
He explained that clients were unwittingly committing themselves to paying 1,500 even if no sale of their business was achieved.
He said: The withdrawal fee is on that contract for life, with instructions from Paul Mitchell and Paul OReilly not to inform people its there for life.
I raised it at sales meetings, that it was abhorrent. The withdrawal fee is like an anchor. If owners sell it themselves, RTA wants 1,500. If they take it off the market, RTA wants 1,500.

RTA disputed the account of its former sales star, saying it was made up because Mr Rowlands was facing disciplinary action over alleged racist language.
Mr OReilly also claimed that the Mirror had been ordered by the Press Complaints Commission to print a retraction for one of my previous stories about his company.
He was asked to produce this retraction, forcing him to admit: I dont have a copy of it.
Thats because it doesnt exist.

The tribunal ruling was postponed.
Fee free: The Turner Butler ‘guarantee’
Rip-off 2: 50,000 for web advertisingIf Turner Butler failed to sell his building business, Constructive Care, Steve Archer assumed he wouldnt owe a penny.
After all, hed been given a Full No Sale No Fee Guarantee. He said: This was included with every letter they sent out to me initially.
His firm folded after no buyer was found and Turner Butler are now suing him in Hertford county court for 50,000.

Even if they had sold his business at his suggested price of 288,000, Turner Butlers 7% commission would come to barely 24,000.
But there was no sale and Turner Butler, said Mr Archer, expects this huge sum for simply advertising my now liquidated company on free insertion websites, for something I could have done myself.
Rupert Cattell, of Turner Butler, said: We asked Mr Archer for an explanation of what happened to all of Constructive Cares assets while under contract to Turner Butler and he has declined to respond, or to provide evidence as to what happened to those assets.

Rip-off 3: Carol rises to Phoenix feeHoping to sell her gift shop in Bristol, Carol Budd put it on the market with one business transfer agent, and then a second. It was sold to a buyer who was introduced by the first company, she says.
Which has not stopped the second one, Phoenix Business Agents, threatening to bankrupt her if she doesnt pay them 8,600.
Their director Zulf Hamid gave me a big song and dance about how valuable my business was, and wanted to value it at 75,000 but I said that it wouldnt sell for that so he reduced it to 50,000, she said.

Eventually it sold for 28,000 to a buyer who had been introduced by the other company.
If Phoenix had found a buyer for me I would have paid them but Im not going to pay them for a customer that was procured by another company.
These people are targeting hard-working, honest folk.
A spokesman for Phoenix did not dispute Mrs Budds account of its initial enormous over-valuation of her shop or explain why it expects a fee thats almost a third of the sale price, but it insists that the buyer was registered with them.

Phoenix is a reputable business transfer agency, said a spokesman, saying the company hoped to resolve the matter through open and frank dialogue.
Couple: Barrie Hooton and Martin Marshall
Rip-off 4: 400k debts, but firm has shifted assets over to ex-directorLast week I told how Preferred Commercial demanded 5,000 from one poor client whose pub it had failed to sell, sending no prospective buyers apart from one time-waster.
Preferred Commercial is in liquidation with debts of almost 400,000 that it cannot pay. Which does not mean the end of the people behind this company.

If you click on website youre re-directed to an almost identical website for a firm called Vendor Direct.
This even uses the same old Preferred Commercial phone number.
Thats because its assets, including any unpaid bills allegedly owed by ex-clients, have been sold to Vendor Direct, whose director is Barrie Hooton.
Hes an ex-director of Preferred Commercial and partner – both in the business and civil ceremony sense – of another Preferred Commercial director, Martin Marshall.

Rip-off 5: No sale? It still costsNo sale, no fee. That was the crucial phrase in the sales pitch that persuaded Carl Bowman to put his hardware store in Leeds on the market with Ernest Wilson & Co Ltd.
Now he says ruefully: With hindsight I was possibly a little naive to accept the word of their sales rep and not query the terms of business further.
His store didnt sell and now Ernest Wilson is suing him for 4,765.
It was marketed at 205,000 without success, even though Mr Bowman says that he had been told before signing the contract that potential buyers were very keen.

He heard little until Ernest Wilson told him to cut the price to 160,000 and accept liability for their marketing fees.
When he refused, Ernest Wilson took it off the market and issued its court claim.
The firm insists that its terms and conditions are sent to every client and include the clause: Advertising and marketing sac celine ( costs are payable upon withdrawal.
Director Stuart Moorhouse said: We were left with no option but to issue court proceedings.

He pointed out that Mr Bowmans complaint to The Property Ombudsman had been rejected.
Mr Bowman responded by reminding Ernest Wilson that they were fined in 2012 by The National Federation of Property Professionals.
Its tribunal ruling began: We are disappointed that we have heard three further cases connected with Ernest Wilson, especially as there have been two previous cases, one in 2007 and another in 2011.
The latest case, which resulted in three 750 fines, concerned the giving to a seller client a copy of the agency agreement document for the sale of their business that is not identical to the version the client has signed.

Campaign group fights the roguesTales like the ones here prompted the establishment of the Campaign for Ethics in Business Transfer Agents , a free advice website.
Its spokeswoman said some small firms risk going bust if they pay agents who fail to find them buyers but still demand huge fees.
There are no laws to stop the business marketing agents from producing unfair contracts and then suing in the small claims courts, she said.
We encourage people who have successfully beaten them to help by providing witness statements, copy judgments and transcripts for the next person due in court.

You can find it at website
Read more from Andrew Penman hereBeen ripped off? Contact Andrew Penman by emailing [emailprotected] or writing to Penman Investigates, Daily Mirror, One Canada Square, London E14 5AP

An Alternative To Venture Capital In The Food And Beverage Industry

If you are an entrepreneur with a small food or beverage company looking to take it to the next level, this article should be of particular interest to you. Your natural inclination may be to seek venture capital or private equity to fund your growth, but that might not be the best path for you to take. We have created a hybrid M&A model designed to bring the appropriate capital resources to you entrepreneurs. It allows the entrepreneur to bring in smart money and to maintain control.

We have taken the experiences of a beverage industry veteran, a food industry veteran and an investment banker and crafted a model that both large industry players and the small business owners are embracing.

I recently connected with two old college mates from the Wharton Business School. We are in what we like to call, the early autumn of our careers after pursuing quite different paths initially. John Blackington is a partner in Growth Partners, a consulting firm that advises food and beverage companies in all aspects of product introduction and market growth. You might say that it has been his life’s work with his initial introduction to the industry as a Coke Route driver during his college summer breaks.

After graduation, Coke hired John as a management trainee in the sales and marketing discipline. John grew his career at Coke and over the next 25 years held various positions in sales, marketing, and business development. John’s entrepreneurial spirit prevailed and he left Coke to consult with early stage food and beverage companies on new product introductions and strategic partnerships.

Steve Hasselbeck is now a food industry consultant after spending 27 years with the various companies that were rolled up into ConAgra. His experience was in managing products and channels. Steve is familiar with almost every functional area within a large food company. He has seen the introduction and the failed introduction of many food industry products.

John’s experience at Coke and Steve’s experience at ConAgra led them to the conclusion that new product introductions were most efficiently and cost effectively the purview of the smaller, nimble, low overhead company and not the food and beverage giants.

Dave Kauppi is now the president of MidMarket Capital, a M&A firm specializing in smaller technology based companies. Dave got the high tech bug early in his business life and pursued a career in high tech sales and marketing. Dave sold or managed in computer services, hardware, software, datacom, computer leasing and of course, a Dot Com. After several experiences of rapid accent followed by an even more rapid decent as technologies and markets changed, Dave decided to pursue an investment banking practice to help technology companies.

Dave, John, and Steve stayed in touch over the years and would share business ideas. In a recent discussion, John was describing the dynamics he saw with new product introductions in the food and beverage industry. He observed that most of the blockbuster products were the result of an entrepreneurial effort from an early stage company bootstrapping its growth in a very cost conscious lean environment.

The big companies, with all their seeming advantages experienced a high failure rate in new product introductions and the losses resulting from this art of capturing the fickle consumer were substantial. When we contacted Steve, he confirmed that this was also his experience. Don’t get us wrong. There were hundreds of failures from the start-ups as well. However, the failure for the edgy little start-up resulted in losses in the $1 – $5 million range. The same result from an industry giant was often in the $100 million to $250 million range.

For every Hansen Natural or Red Bull, there are literally hundreds of companies that either flame out or never reach a critical mass beyond a loyal local market. It seems like the mentality of these smaller business owners is, using the example of the popular TV show, Deal or No Deal, to hold out for the $1 million briefcase. What about that logical contestant that objectively weighs the facts and the odds and cashes out for $280,000?

As we discussed the dynamics of this market, we were drawn to a merger and acquisition model commonly used in the technology industry that we felt could also be applied to the food and beverage industry. Cisco Systems, the giant networking company, is a serial acquirer of companies. They do a tremendous amount of R&D and organic product development. They recognize, however, that they cannot possibly capture all the new developments in this rapidly changing field through internal development alone.

Cisco seeks out investments in promising, small, technology companies and this approach has been a key element in their market dominance. They bring what we refer to as smart money to the high tech entrepreneur. They purchase a minority stake in the early stage company with a call option on acquiring the remainder at a later date with an agreed-upon valuation multiple. This structure is a brilliantly elegant method to dramatically enhance the risk reward profile of new product introduction. Here is why:

For the Entrepreneur: (Just substitute in your food or beverage industry giant’s name that is in your category for Cisco below)

1.The involvement of Cisco – resources, market presence, brand, distribution capability is a self fulfilling prophecy to your product’s success.

2.For the same level of dilution that an entrepreneur would get from a VC, angel investor or private equity group, the entrepreneur gets the performance leverage of smart money. See #1.

3.The entrepreneur gets to grow his business with Cisco’s support at a far more rapid pace than he could alone. He is more likely to establish the critical mass needed for market leadership within his industry’s brief window of opportunity.

4.He gets an exit strategy with an established valuation metric while the buyer helps him make his exit much more lucrative.

5.As an old Wharton professor used to ask, What would you rather have, all of a grape or part of a watermelon? That sums it up pretty well. The involvement of Cisco gives the product a much better probability of growing significantly. The entrepreneur will own a meaningful portion of a far bigger asset.

For the Large Company Investor:

1.Create access to a large funnel of developing technology and products.

2.Creates a very nimble, market sensitive, product development or R&D arm.

3.Minor resource allocation to the autonomous operator during his skunk works market proving development stage.

4.Diversify their product development portfolio – because this approach provides for a relatively small investment in a greater number of opportunities fueled by the entrepreneurial spirit, they greatly improve the probability of creating a winner.

5.By investing early and getting an equity position in a small company and favorable valuation metrics on the call option, they pay a fraction of the market price to what they would have to pay if they acquired the company once the product had proven successful.

Dean Foods utilized this model successfully with their investment in White Wave, the producer of the market leading Silk Brand of organic Soy milk products. Dean Foods acquired a 25% equity stake in White Wave in 1999 for $4 million. While allowing this entrepreneurial firm to operate autonomously, they backed them with leverage and a modest level of capital resources. Sales exploded and Dean exercised their call option on the remaining 75% equity in White Way in 2004 for $224 million. Sales for White Way were projected to hit $420 million in 2005.

Given today’s valuation metrics for a company with White Way’s growth rate and profitability, their market cap is about $1.26 Billion, or 3 times trailing 12 months revenue. Dean invested $5million initially, gave them access to their leverage, and exercised their call option for $224 million. Their effective acquisition price totaling $229 million represents an 82% discount to White Wave’s 2005 market cap.

Dean Foods is reaping additional benefits. This acquisition was the catalyst for several additional investments in the specialty/gourmet end of the milk industry. These acquisitions have transformed Dean Foods from a low margin milk producer into a Wall Street standout with a growing stable of high margin, high growth brands.

Dean’s profits have tripled in four years and the stock price has doubled since 2000, far outpacing the food industry average. This success has triggered the aggressive introduction of new products and new channels of distribution. Not bad for a $5 million bet on a new product in 1999. Wait, let’s not forget about our entrepreneur. His total proceeds of $229 million are a fantastic 5- year result for a little company with 1999 sales of under $20 million.

MidMarket Capital has created this model combining the food and beverage industry experience with the investment banking experience to structure these successful transactions. MMC can either represent the small entrepreneurial firm looking for the smart money investment with the appropriate growth partner or the large industry player looking to enhance their new product strategy with this creative approach.

This model has successfully served the technology industry through periods of outstanding growth and market value creation. Many of the same dynamics are present in the food and beverage industry and these same transaction stru7ctures can be similarly employed to create value.