How remote working could be good for business

If you have been working remotely since the beginning of lockdown and wondering whether there has been any benefit to your business from the separation, here are a few reasons why you should consider WFH for a little while longer.

Saving Time

Think back to when you were running from one meeting to the next, spending hours in traffic every day getting to and from the office daily. Working remotely has freed up that travel time you have been wasting, and you have more likely been able to get an earlier start and a decent finish to your day.

The Concentration Game Is Turned On

If you work in an open-environment, you may sometimes find it difficult to focus on one task at a time. Being interrupted by external distractions and impromptu meetings have a knack of breaking one’s momentum. By working from home, you may have been able to set your online channels to “away”, put your head down and concentrate a little longer.

You spend less on junk

It is so easy to grab a burger or junk food whilst running between meetings and deadlines. You may have been able to plan your meals a little better whilst working from home, in that a good home cooked breakfast or lunch has been substituted for on-the-go calories.

You get down to business

Have you found that meetings that usually ran well over the allotted time are now done far quicker? The chit-chat and interruptions seem to be far less when everyone is meeting via video conferencing. And those meetings that could have been emails, are actually becoming emails.

How you can help small businesses in your area

Now is as good a time as any to start supporting small businesses in your area. Many have been severely affected by the current lockdown and if they have not had to shut their doors, they are battling to get back on their feet.

You can make a difference to these people by showing your support in one or more of the following ways:

BUY LOCAL

When you next do your grocery shopping, consider buying your vegetables and fruit from local farmers – not only is it a lot cheaper but it could mean that it is a lot fresher. You can support local clothing manufacturers too and in doing so, keeping the local labour force employed, you will most likely be wearing something unique with only a few of the same in the country. If your favourite local store has shut down, perhaps try and see if they are available to take online orders.

GIG-IT AT HOME

With the current suspension of music concerts and other events, our local talent has been under strain. Many have been hosting online gigs for a small fee to keep the wheels turning. Instead of being bored indoors over the weekend, why not tune into a concert or comedy show.  You’ll be doing them and yourself a massive favour.

FIND A WAY TO PAY IT FORWARD

If you are worried that your small contribution is just a drop in the ocean, perhaps you could look into supporting a local crowdfund. By paying forward just a little, you will be helping an entrepreneur in need, a lot. There are many well established crowdfunding projects that are registered and safe, so you will have peace of mind that your money is going to the right places.

Public events suspended

The City of Tshwane plays host to many events, from sporting to festivals and music. Eventing facilities are equipped to cater for small, intimate gatherings to large international sporting and music events catering to thousands of visitors.

Due to the current coronavirus pandemic, all events have been suspended until further notice.

Trading club sports for individual training

Sport has evolved from being a hobby or extracurricular activity to a way of life and every day activity for a lot of people. Currently, there are very few sports that can be played due to the coronavirus lockdown. There are however a few ways in which people can keep their energy up and endorphins flowing.

Here are a few ways in which you can keep moving:

  • Jogging and trail running

This is one sport that you don’t need special equipment for or any sort of skill. If you’re not a regular jogger, you can start off light, by taking a brisk walk and working up to a jog and gradually picking up speed to running. Trail running is the perfect way to get out in nature and challenge your heart-rate, take a look at Tshwane’s trail running courses available for all levels of fitness.

Not only does this give you a great cardiovascular workout, the fresh air will help you clear your mind too.

  • Cycling

For this one, you do need a bicycle, so if you’re started out and not sure if it’s your thing, perhaps try and borrow a bike from a friend before making an investment.

You can either hit the tar or if you are more of a daredevil, you can try your hand at mountain biking – Tshwane has a few beautiful mountain biking nature trails for you to take look at.

  • At-home fitness

It may sound strange that you would choose to train at home, but while gyms and clubs are not open, this is a great opportunity to include at-home training to your regime. There are many online facilities (some free) that give regular fitness training, including yoga, pilates, strength training and more. Virtual sports have also become all the rage during lockdown, which basically means that you can still play the sport you love, in the safety of your home.

Tshwane’s bustling student community

The City of Tshwane has a large student community, with many tertiary education facilities across the city. Student accommodation, “villages” and entertainment is situated close to most of the large universities, colleges and technikons.

Here is list of tertiary institutions in and around Tshwane:

      • University of Pretoria ( also known as UP, Tuks or Tukkies)

Website: www.up.ac.za
Contact details: 012 420 3111

      • University of South Africa ( also known as UNISA)

Website: www.unisa.ac.za
Contact details: 012 429 2614

      • Tshwane University of Technology

Website:  www.tut.ac.za
Contact details: 012 382 5114

      • Rosebank College

Website: www.rosebankcollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 320 7270 (CBD campus) or 012 343 2504 (Sunnyside campus)

      • Boston City Campus and Business College

Website: www.boston.co.za
Contact details: 012 546 7798 (Pretoria North Campus) or 012 343 1731 (Arcadia campus)

      • Open Window

Website: www.openwindow.co.za
Contact details: 012 648 9200

      • Damelin

Website: www.damelin.co.za
Contact details: 012 406 0000 (Pretoria campus) or 012 471 3300 (Menlyn campus)

      • Inscape Education Group

Website: www.inscape.ac
Contact details: 012 346 2189

      • Varsity College

Website: www.varsitycollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 348 2551

      • Tshwane North TVET College

Website: www.tsc.edu.za
Contact details: 012 323 8683

      • Tshwane South TVET College

Website: www.tsc.edu.za
Contact details: 012 401 5000

      • Academy for Facilities Management

Website: www.a4fm.ac.za
Contact details: 012 993 0533

      • Centurion Academy

Website: www.ca.ac.za/
Contact details: 012 648 9700

      • Midrand Graduate Institute

Website: www.mgi.ac.za
Contact details: 012 943 1001

      • Academy of Business & Computer Studies

Website: www.academystudies.co.za
Contact details: 012 326 0086

      • Central Technical College (Pty)Ltd

Website: www.ctc.edu.za
Contact details: 012 320 5109

      • Churchil Technical College (Pty) Ltd

Website: www.churchiltechnicalcollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 767 8870

      • CTU Training Solutions

Website: www.ctutraining.ac.za
Contact details: 012 998 2424

      • Dam Technical College Pretoria

Website: www.damtraining.co.za
Contact details: 012 326 0247

      • Denver Technical College

Website: www.denvercollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 320 8111

      • Gauteng Central College

Website: www.gautengcentralcollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 320 3691

      • Pro-Active Public Services College

Website: www.proactivecollege.co.za
Contact details: 012 346 6859

      • Richfield Graduate Institute of Technology (Pty) Ltd

Website: www.rgit.co.za
Contact details: 012 323 4655

Four reasons why you need to visit Tshwane

Tshwane’s beautiful land stretches across 6,368 km2 and is home to about 2 921 488 people according to the 2011 municipal elections). The Capital City is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in South Africa, welcoming residents and guests of all walks of life to enjoy her natural pizzaz.

Here are four reasons why you need to visit Tshwane

  1. GO WILD IN THE CITY

The Dinokeng Game Reserve in Tshwane is the only residential game park in the world hosting the Big 5. The reserve which is open to day visitors as well as a variety of sleep-over options.

Your experience at the Dinokeng Game Reserve can be as jam packed or as chilled as you want it to be. By taking a slow drive through the park to admire the natural beauty, take a guided tour of the park on foot with an experienced ranger or enjoy the view with sundowners at one of the restaurants.

  1. TAKE A WALK THROUGH HISTORY

Tshwane, like most of the South African cities, has a beautiful historical tale to tell. The Union Buildings are built at the highest point of the City and form the official seat of South Africa’s government and houses The Presidency. This modern-day acropolis was complete in 1913 and represents a decadent layer of South Africa’s history.

  1. KEEP IT ANTIQUE

Probably one of the most exciting days out include a trip down the Antique Route 6. This route of antique shops will take you down the archives of Tshwane’s antique treasures. From furniture to trinkets, books, clothing and random collectables, visitors are guaranteed to fall in love.

  1. GO WHERE TIME STOOD STILL

Imagine going back in time, where roads are lined with old Oak trees, the houses and buildings are made of stone and corrugated iron. This is Cullinan, an old little mining town, just 20 minutes away from the Tshwane city centre. Home to the famous Cullinan Diamond (the largest rough gem quality diamond ever found), among other significant stone discoveries, the Town Where Time Stood Still still serves the premier mine and is the third largest diamond producer in South Africa.

Five ways to stay safe in the city during the Covid-19 pandemic

The dust has far from settled on the coronavirus pandemic and even though many lives are back to “business as usual” there is still a great need for safety out on the streets.

Here are five ways in which you can stay safe and still enjoy your day-to-day activities out and about in Tshwane.

  1. NEVER LEAVE HOME WITHOUT A MASK

It has become second nature to most people to grab their mask together with their keys and wallet before walking out of the door. But there are a few people that think that wearing the mask is not always necessary.

Wearing a mask not only protects yourself from contracting the virus, but it also protects your fellow city-dwellers from catching it if you unknowingly have the coronavirus.

  1. SANITISE. SANITISE

Every single shop, building, mall, hospital and bank has a sanitising station at the entrance to their establishments. And while you may have just santised in the shop next door, you will be required to sanitise again when you enter the next store.

This is for your safety again and the safety of others. Don’t refuse the sanitiser from the store clerks. It is their job to ensure that you are following protocol and keeping their space covid-free.

If you are worried about dry, cracked hands, carry a small bottle of moisturiser with you and lather a bit on between stops.

  1. BE AWARE OF PERSONAL SPACE

So you have sanitised from head to toe, you have a double layered mask on your face, you have washed the trolley down and now you are ready to do your shopping.

This does not mean that you can go ahead and lean over the poor woman that can’t decide which tea bags to buy or rub shoulders with the cute stranger standing at the bakery section.

Keep your distance, 2m in fact. You can admire them from afar.

  1. LIMIT YOUR TIME IN PUBLIC

Planning your trips to the city is a wise idea to ensure that you spend most of your time in the safety of your home. Although going to the shops, work, banks etc are unavoidable for some, be sure to use the time you have properly, avoiding the need to pop out often. If you can make use of online shopping, banking and even working, then rather do that and only go out if it is absolutely necessary.

  1. SHARING IS NOT CARING

In order to avoid having to use somebody else’s goods while you are out and about, rather be prepared. Find a ziplock bag and put all the items you might need but always rely on at the stores. A few examples include: A pen, hand sanitiser, hand cream, lip balm, tissues and/or wet wipes, drinking straws, a plastic cutlery set, notebook.

You can sanitise most of the items before putting them into the bag and remember to always wash your hands first before handling them or replenishing them when you are home again.

 

 

Three great places to visit in Tshwane

Whether you are looking for a change of scenery or visiting Tshwane during the lockdown period, you may find that your options are a little more different than before. Social distancing and various other laws and regulations have seen a big change in the way in which people find entertainment.

Here are three places you can visit in the City of Tshwane during lockdown:

Rietvlei Nature Reserve

Established in 1929, the Rietveli Nature Reserve spans across 4000 hectares of land. While there are a few hiking trails, the reserve is only allowing self-drive viewing with only 50 cars allowed inside at a time. But we’ll take a day of game-viewing from our car over watching TV any day. For more information on the safety rules and regulations as well as the entry fees to the reserve, visit the Meetup site.

Pretoria Art Museum

Art is always a good idea. And if you cannot make art, you can at least appreciate the works of others. The Pretoria Art Museum offers pieces ranging from paper to ceramics, mixed media, painting and tons more. For only R25 to marvel at these works, we think it’s worth the visit.

National Botanical Gardens

We can’t stress enough how important it is to get out into the fresh air, just to clear one’s mind and reconnect with nature. The National Botanical Gardens is a great place to unwind and take in the beauty of nature right on your doorstep. Take a trail walk and admire the birds or simply sit in silence and experience bliss.

A guide to creating a Get Stuff Done (GSD) journal

If you hate having to write out endless lists of tasks that need to be done, you are not alone. Many people find the tedious ask of planning a big schlep and so a lot of the time this is discarded and left to “wing-it”.

Creating a GSD journal is one way in which you can create a well-thought out plan for yourself. You will be able to decide exactly how much or how little you want to include in your journal, but we guarantee that once you start, you won’t want to stop.

What you will need:

  • A hardcover book (preferably unlined), you will need one page per day so make sure your book is big enough.
  • Coloured pens and khoki pens
  • Washi tape (optional)
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Your creative juices
  • A plan of what you want to keep track of – it can include your water intake, tasks, motivational quotes or verses, exercise routine, study schedule, savings goals and more

Monthly Plans

Start with a monthly plan and use two pages to map out what you need to get done, include important dates and appointments so that this is front and center of your plan.

Weekly Plans

You can then whittle these plans down into weekly goals and plans so that you are able to put more detail into your process

Daily Plans

Create a page for every day, include a habit tracker which you can draw into a shape or image. Your to-do list, workout plans and schedules all need to go in here.

Watch this very quick tutorial on how you can create your own GSD journal.

How to put your best foot forward when looking for a job during tough times

Recruitment in 2020 has become a very difficult task for both employers and job-seekers. With so many people losing their jobs due to covid-19, the markets are saturated with people desperately searching for work.

Here are a few ways in which you can put your best foot forward to finding the right job.

Apply for the job you want

By tailoring your CV to the spec of the job, you are able to highlight your best qualities that the specific job requires. If you are applying for an administrative-orientated position, highlight those capabilities instead of listing irrelevant competencies such as graphic design for example.

Don’t apply for every job you see advertised

Many recruiters are seeing people applying for each and every job they can find from specialised vacancies such as strategy for example to computer programming and reception work. By doing this, the applicant is diluting their talent and capabilities and makes the recruit sceptical about what their competencies really are. Stick to what you know.

Believe in yourself

Not every set-back means failure. Losing one’s job for whatever reason can leave you feeling rejected, demotivated and worthless. Understanding that you are great at what you do, taking the time to evaluate what you really want and then going out to get it is a massive step toward getting that job.

Be open to change

The way in which business is conducted today is quite literally not the same as it was just yesterday. By being adaptable and willing to go out of your comfort zone, you will find that you will learn a lot more, grow a lot faster and even pick up a few hidden talents you never knew you had.