Patching the Holes 7 Common Home Security Weaknesses

Patching the Holes: 7 Common Home Security Weaknesses

A home is more than just a place where we lay our heads at night. A home is our castle, a place where we feel safe and secure, our loved ones and possessions free from the threats that some outsiders present.

To ensure safety for a home and everything inside, there needs to be attention paid to security. The security required can be as simple as a change in mindset or as elaborate as a new set of locks now at Action Lock Doc. This article will provide the specifics to make your castle safer than it ever was.

Greater Awareness

Making your home safer doesn’t necessarily cost a lot of money. Instead, all it takes is a greater awareness of what makes a home secure. It’s a matter of realizing that it is a matter of “better safe than sorry.” That’s a good philosophy when it comes to home safety. A homeowner should be constantly aware of all potential weaknesses in the security of their premises.

Opting for Cheap

When it comes to home security, there’s no reason for spending more money than is needed. On the other hand, a homeowner should not buy products just because they are less expensive. Being serious about the safety of your home means purchasing the right products for the correct uses. This often means buying name brands that you trust.

Skimping on Installation

Even when they buy good products, many homeowners try to save money by installing them themselves. This is another grave mistake that can jeopardize safety. Unless you are handy with tools and know something about how products are installed correctly, let a professional handle it. A qualified professional knows how to install a product in a manner that maximizes its potential for security. This means things like not allowing hinges to show, which can be an invitation to disaster.

Not Investing in Smart Security

This is an age in which all things security can be amazingly complex. The gadgets that have been made available to help make homes secure have made homes much more secure than in years past. Products such as video doorbells, smart cameras, smoke and motion detectors allow us to have safer homes and allow us to monitor our homes from almost anywhere. In the event of an unauthorized entry, police or fire can be notified with little or no action from the homeowner.

Lax Maintenance

Even the best home security systems can fall victim to the ravages of time and poor maintenance. It doesn’t matter whether you have an analog system or a smart system. Periodic maintenance must be performed to ensure that it is operating optimally. In most cases, good maintenance is usually nothing more than tests or routine cleaning from time to time.

Choosing Not to Upgrade

When security systems get old, not only do they become less reliable, but thieves learn how best to breach them. Otherwise, new systems are the most effective way to foil a thief since they are probably unfamiliar with it. By upgrading a security system, a homeowner sets the bad guys back and makes their systems even stronger.

A homeowner should always be vigilant for their home’s security, it’s strengths as well as its weaknesses. Good security of a home might be more expensive than the alternative, but what price is your home and family’s safety and security worth?

This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.

Ideas for Stimulating Learning and Creativity at Home

The pandemic has forced millions of schools across the nation to close. As COVID-19 continues to ravage the globe, billions of students are studying from home, causing a new normal upon children and families who never saw this coming.

A study from June of this year showed that students struggle with online classes, saying that their virtual lessons are much inferior to in-person courses. Unless your children were home-schooled, they have most likely never seen your home as a place for learning and creativity. On the contrary, they probably grew up seeing your house as a place to rest, sleep, and play.

Unfortunately, our situation remains unchanged at the moment, and we can only try to make the best out of our circumstances. As parents, it’s our job to help our kids become the best people they can be. Here are some tips and tricks for inspiring learning and creativity at home, because our kids need and deserve all the help they can get.

Set up a separate work station for them.

Because your home is now a home-office-school-gym hybrid, you need to be able to set boundaries now more than ever. If you’re stressed out about this new setup or finding yourself having to combat Zoom fatigue, chances are your children are, too. And just like adults, they need to be emotionally regulated to access their brainpower fully.

Studies show that visually and spatially separating your rest, play, and work stations can go a long way in helping you be more productive when teleworking. The same is true for young students. Here are some tips for setting up their work station:

  1. Make sure the work station is facing the windows or the walls, not their beds. It will keep them from being tempted to study on their beds, which experts say isn’t a good idea.
  2. Consider your child’s age and learning style. Their desk and chair must be appropriate for their age and size and must do wonders for their backs. If they’re the type to get energized by seeing nature, set up the work station where they have a full view of the yard or some trees. If they’re easily distracted, remove devices, comic books, and other non-school-related activities beside them.
  3. Assist them in organizing their books and other school materials. Having them take the lead with you helping them will make them feel like they were part of building the work station.
  4. Make sure that the workspace supports their learning style. Because all kids are different,there is more than one way for them to learn-there’s no one-size-fits-all. Support your child’s schooling by adjusting the workstation according to their learning style. If your child is a visual learner, provide them with lots of art materials or surround them with stimulating artworks. If your child is a kinesthetic learner, make sure they have enough space to run around and do some stretching throughout the day.

Enforce structure and consistency.

Pandemic or not, kids need structure and consistency. Set some rules and boundaries with your kids. That may come in the form of a daily schedule or chores that they need to help out with at home. Whatever it is, teach your child essential values by being specific about the routines and family rules they need to follow. Remember to be kind and supportive about it, so they know you have your back even when they fail.

Add some greenery into your home.

There are multiple physical, mental, and emotional benefits to seeing greenery regularly. Scientists found that green spaces can encourage exercise and can provide a respite for weary and overstimulated minds. Even the simple act of seeing green in your home can be healing and therapeutic for you and your kids!

If your house is surrounded by nature, consider opening windows all the time or ditching the drapes. If not, takecare of some houseplants or have a moss wall setup.

Encourage rest.

When you see your child restless or frustrated, that’s a great time to encourage them to take a break. Cheer them up by giving them a light snack, letting them read a few pages of their favorite book, or play for a little. Do you remember emotional regulation? They’re only able to be the best student they can be if they’re emotionally healthy. So encourage rest when they need it.

Practice What You Preach

Being stuck at home together, your kids learn so much more from what they see rather than what they hear. If you want them to excel at their schooling, set an example for rhythms of work and rest that are both productive and healthy. So practice what you preach, and exemplify what it looks like to care for yourself as you work from home.

How Developing a Business Process Will Improve Your Productivity

Are you running a business plagued with backlogs, slow productivity, or redundant processes? If so, then you need to explore how to improve your business processes and ability to scale. 

When you have the right business process in place, you can start to scale your production and grow your business without expanding your resources. 

Don’t worry if you’re not sure what that means we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to learn all about how to improve efficiency by creating new processes for your business. 

What Is a Business Process?

In simple terms, a business process is a series of tasks or activities that accomplish a set goal. So, let’s say your business sells custom-made jewelry, you have a series of tasks to create that jewelry. But you also have another series of tasks to acquire the pieces for your jewelry.

For example, do you fly away to far off places and personally inspect each piece that you purchase? If so, can you outsource this to a professional in the area that you trust thereby freeing you up to focus on other tasks closer to home?

Additionally, where do you sell your jewelry? Do you showcase your jewelry at in-person events? Could you instead create an online store featuring your product so you are no longer required to spend the time at the in-person showcases?

When you look at each stage in the production of your product for your business, you can find ways to streamline your process and increase your efficiency. 

In today’s business environment you can’t be satisfied with your current process. Keep improving until you know it is the most efficient and gives you the highest output for your tasks.

You must continually look at your processes and evaluating whether or not they’re the most efficient and give you the most production possible. If not, it’s time to work on building more efficient processes to help you grow your business without increasing your resources. 

Why Your Business Needs to Focus on Building Processes

You want to grow your business. But your resources are finite. You only have a set amount of time, energy, employees, capacity, and tools to create your product and run your business. Therefore, if you want to grow your output without also growing your resources, you must become more efficient. 

Increasing efficiency allows you to get more from what you already have. And this is the key to scaling your business to the level you’ve always wanted. Some benefits to improving your business processes include: 

  • increased efficiency
  • increased ability to outsource
  • improved security
  • ability to remain agile
  • ability to continually improve

Business process automation allows you to grow your production without also needing to raise more capital or hire more employees. You need to keep your business agile so you can keep up with the changing demands while also keeping costs and duplication down. 

So, if you’re ready to grow your business then you first need to look at how you can improve your processes. This will allow you to grow without expanding your resources. The key is to work smarter not harder. 

How to Build Processes That Will Increase Efficiency

A business process is a way to map out your business plan in a workflow. It will show visually how you create your product and then get it to your market customer or client. 

There are two key components to creating processes that will help your business and not contribute to more paperwork. For your process to be beneficial for your company it needs to be properly documented. And each step needs to have clearly defined ownership showing who will be completing that step.

Documentation is imperative so everyone is on the same page about each process. This also assists in onboarding new team members in the future, you can easily show them why each process is important and who will be completing it. Before you start creating your business process, you need to ask yourself these four questions: 

1. what is your desired goal (or output)? 

2. What are you working with in terms of tools and resources (or inputs)? 

3. how can you create a logical sequence (or workflow) to get your inputs to outputs?

4. What tasks are required to achieve your workflow? 

When you have the answers to these questions you will be ready to start working on creating your process to improve efficiency.  

How to Manage Your Business Processes

As you grow the number of processes for your business, you will need to also grow your business process management. Which is how you document and disseminate the information to your team and suppliers. 

With our jewelry business example above we looked at two ways to outsource or digitalize to allow more time to grow their business. However, creating processes can be much more simple and minute that changing your business plan. 

When you change your product line, how do you dispense this information to your team or retailers? Do you send large files for them to download and look at? How can you simplify the process for both you to send out and for them to retain? You could convert multipage PDF to single image and send that instead. 

So, look at every part of your production process and see where you can improve efficiency, reduce redundancy, or simply make life easier. This will show you where to start to create processes for your business and scale to the next level.

Now, You Too Can Improve Your Productivity

Now you know why you need to create processes for each area in your business. You can easily see why they are so valuable in improving your efficiency so you can grow your business without also increasing your resources. Instead, create a business process so you can do more with what you have. 

Bookmark this article so you can refer to it again each time you have questions about how to create a process that will be valuable and beneficial to your business. 

For more great information on this and other topics, check out the rest of our blog.

October is Cyber Security Month

Did you know that October is Cyber Security Month? Hopefully you did, if not, it’s totally okay because now is just as good of a time as any to start learning about cyber security and how you can protect your family!

With the start of school this year many districts are going with a virtual option. This leaves kids on devices almost all day and night. So making sure they are cyber aware is a very important part of using the internet and all of these different apps.

If you need help, consider using the FBI Safe Online Surfing program. It’s a free cyber safety educational game for students in third through eighth grade. Learn more at: https://sos.fbi.gov.

You can also check out NetSmartz.org for videos, activities and more from @MissingKids This content empowers youth of all ages to make safer choices on and offline.

There are even more resources than just these two, but let’s not overwhelm everyone with so many options that you don’t even know where to start. If you want to dive deeper into cyber security resources, check out this post I did a few years ago. It is filled with lots of resources.

As we continue through this month I will be posting more resources to highlight some of my favorites. So be sure to check back and follow along as we work together in protecting our kids and ourselves with online safety!