It's a problem faced by many small businesses, and one readily solved by apps for business and the step-by-step advice of Minneapolis tech support company Tech Guru. On the heels of Tech Guru's December 12th event, during which we'll debut the option to join us from your home or office, the Learning Lunch Series on January 9th will go in-depth to teach you how to Unshackle Your Cash: Get Paid Faster!
Let's Get You Paid
Tech Guru founder and CEO Dan Moshe goes beyond anecdotal advice on getting dollars in the door for your company. On January 9th, join Dan - in-person or live online - to learn exactly how to get your small business back on track with receivables.
In this seminar you'll learn:
- Proven methods to get you paid in a timely manner from clients
- How to use accounting software like Freshbooks, Wufoo, and ZenCash, depending on your company's needs
- How to build a bulletproof process by setting expectations, billing consistently, and using as much automation as possible
Two Ways to Learn
There are two ways to attend the event!
Tech Guru - Grain Belt Conference Room
79 13th Ave. NE, Suite 207, Minneapolis, MN 55413
This event is FREE! A delicious, complimentary lunch is included. Space is limited to 30 people. REGISTER TODAY!
Come meet, greet, and eat in the Tech Guru conference room as Dan explains the ins and outs of getting paid faster.
2. LIVE ON YOUR DEVICE:
This event is FREE! Can't make it to the Tech Guru offices? Watch from the comfort of your office or home. Register now, and we'll send you a link before the event to get you convenient access to view the event live via the web.
More Than Lunch. More Than Tech.
What has made Tech Guru's Learning Lunch Series such a success? There's the great company, the tasty lunch, and the introduction to new aspects of tech to our clients and guests. But Tech Guru's aim is to help you use technology to benefit your small business by making you more productive, improving your cash flow, and freeing up your time to focus on whatever it is your business does best. In short, Tech Guru cares about your business as much as you do!
Tech Guru looks forward to serving you some lunch, learning, or both on January 9th!
The headquarters of a Minneapolis tech support company might not be the first place you'd think of as a bastion of silliness and frivolity, but once "Chief Fun Officer" Maria Lundberg cracked the good-times whip, things got fun, fast. Check out her ideas for making the office a happier place during the holiday season.
The Office Fun-Slump
It started with a conversation among the Tech Guru staff. Work was busier than ever, the holidays were upon them, and there hadn't been much time for the comraderie the team usually enjoyed. An idea was born: appoint a different person each quarter to be in charge of bringing fun back to the office in a variety of ways. Client relations manager Maria gladly took the reins first because, in her words, "I love the holidays."
CFO Idea #1: It's All Fun and Games
Giggling as she describes the holiday shenanigans that have taken over the office since November, Maria describes "Secret Guru," the company's version of the guess-your-gift-giver game Secret Santa.
"We have three weeks of giving, and it's funny to watch people try to guess who picked whose name," says Maria. For the first and second week the budget is $5-10, and gifts fall under the categories of "Something Funny" and "Food and Sweets." The third week's theme is "Red and Green," with trinkets and dollar-priced gifts to be given daily. Finally, the big gift ($10-15) and Secret Guru reveal happen at the Tech Guru staff holiday party. On week one CEO Dan Moshe received fireworks, and Maria got the Duck Dynasty: I'm Dreaming of a Redneck Christmas DVD. "I watched it over Thanksgiving weekend," she admits.
CFO Idea #2: Force Them Out
A night dedicated to enjoying one another's company can be just the thing to restore the bond among officemates. Maria plotted out an after-hours get-together by mixing some of the best things about the holiday season: trimming a tree and watching a Hollywood comedy. "We all quote the movie Anchorman constantly," explains Maria, who has planned tree-decorating followed by a trip to the Kerasotes ICON movie theater at West End. After they catch the newly released sequel to the Will Ferrell-starring comedy, the Tech Guru team will no doubt add to their collection of Ron Burgundy quotes.
CFO Idea #3: Shamelessly Use Food
The easiest way to bring a group together is, undeniably, with food. Between the group's Thanksgiving and holiday dinners outside the office, Maria knows homemade treats in the office are always appreciated. She shares two recipes here.
The Easy Recipe: Holiday Hershey Kiss Pretzels
Maria rattles off this recipe offhand.
Small bowtie pretzels
Holiday color M&Ms
1. Preheat oven to WARM.
2. Lay out pretzels on a piece of parchment paper.
3. Unwrap one Hershey kisses for each pretzel and place it on top. Try not to eat too many kisses as you go.
4. Flash the pretzels in the oven for a minute or two just so that kisses get soft.
5. Place one M&M on each kiss and let the pretzels cool.
For lovely presentation put the treats in mason jars or clear cellophane bags.
The Showoff Recipe: Nutella Oreo Cheesecake
2 cups Oreo crumbs
½ stick unsalted butter, melted
16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ + 1 tablespoon heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup Nutella
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter an 8×8 baking dish and line with parchment paper, making sure that the parchment is well pressed in the corners. Set aside.
2. In a food processor, pulse Oreos until they become crumbs. Add in melted butter and pulse until moistened. Press Oreo mixture evenly into the bottom of your baking dish. Bake crust until set, about 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.
3. Clean out the food processor. Add cream cheese, eggs, sugar, ¼ cup heavy cream, and vanilla. Pulse until smooth. Put 2/3 of the cream cheese mixture in a bowl and set aside. Add Nutella and 1 tablespoon of heavy cream to the remaining 1/3 cream cheese mixture in the processor. Pulse until smooth.
4. To assemble, spread the plain cheesecake mixture over the cooled Oreo crust, being careful of the crust. Then pour the Nutella cheesecake layer on top of the plain cheesecake layer and spread evenly. Bake on the center rack of the oven for about 35 minutes, or until the center jiggles slightly. Remove from the oven and cool completely on a cooling rack. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
"I let mine cool over night, then topped with melted dark coca nibs, and Godiva chocolate covered strawberries," says Maria. "It was insanely delicious!"
Good Luck Topping All That, Staff
Maria intentionally set the bar high during her tenure as CFO. "I'll be interested to see what happens in the spring when I pass my torch," she says.
As much as the staff loves to play, Tech Guru is known best as the Minneapolis IT company that cares about your business as much as you do. See how the Caring IT company can transform your tech.
Always looking to inform its small businesses clients in Minneapolis, tech support company Tech Guru presented a Lunch Learning Series in November on "Dropbox for Business." See what you missed and learn more about December's upcoming event!
What is Dropbox?
After a tasty lunch peppered with great conversation, VP of Operations Micah Thor lit up his laptop. He defined Dropbox to the packed conference room of the Tech Guru offices as "a cloud-synchronized file storage solution with a local cache." While most of the group had at least an introductory 2G free Dropbox account, a few guests were new to the software, and some had upgraded to the $10/month 100G account. Micah's overview summarized the details of file-sharing for business and the security risks in the program.
Micah Thor talks about the ins and outs of Dropbox for Business
File-sharing for Business
The guests present weren't the only ones thinking about Dropbox as a way to increase productivity for their businesses - currently, the software is used by 100 million people and 2.5 million buinesses. The Mac- and PC-compatible Dropbox is available on all smartphones, and, to the delight of many, can replace expensive servers and VPNs.
Know the Risks
After hearing about the risks, one of the Learning Series guests stated the slightest possiblity of a breach in security would be a dealbreaker as a viable option for his company. Others wanted details on how an upgraded account could be shared among users. Micah explained further details of package pricing on Dropbox for Business and why your tech service provider - like the Midwest's premier Dropbox partner, Tech Guru - can help you figure out how Dropbox can best be used for your business.
Guests get to know one another over lunch before the presentation. Tech Guru CEO Dan Moshe (bottom right) and guests. Guest and CPA Ronald Leander has a laugh.
By the end of the event, there was barely a cookie left in the house.
Doesn't the Learning Series sound informative and interesting? If you can't steal away time from the office, or if you prefer to participate in social events from the safety of your computer screen, Tech Guru has you covered. Beginning in December, Learning Lunch events are available two ways: in-person (Mingle! Enjoy a free lunch!) or live online (Watch from anywhere! Bring your own lunch!). We hope this allows clients, their friends, and well, ANYONE who loves to learn about tech the chance to participate every month and learn something new.
Don't lament missing last month's event - instead, look forward to Thursday, December 12, when Tech Guru will be discussing "The Business Value of Cloud Desktops." Micah Thor will expound on the true hidden costs of your current IT and just what makes the cloud so great anyway. REGISTER NOW to join in-person or live online (you'll need to register for the link). You'll walk away fully informed on whether cloud desktops are right for your small business or nonprofit.
The CEO of Minneapolis' caring IT support company is frequently asked what the hottest, newest, "funnest," and most practical tech gifts are every holiday season. Read on for Tech Guru founder Dan Moshe's list of 2013 Best Tech Gifts.
1. Google's 'Nexus 5' Phone
Your favorite android phone user may be looking for an upgrade, and the Nexus 5 phone from Google is sure to put a smile on her face.
- High resolution screen (yep, sharper than the iPhone)
- The first phone on the market to boast version 4.4 (known as Kit Kat), providing a more intuitive phone dialer
- Improved Google Now voice assistant, aniticpating what you need based on past search requests
Learn more about the Nexus 5 here.
2. Samsung 'Galaxy Gear' Smartwatch
Compatible with Samsung's Galaxy Note II, Note III, S3, and S4, this timepiece-plus may be the perfect complement to the company's smartphones. Who on your list is looking to up his James Bond quotient?
- Receive Quick Glance notifications, such as calls, emails, and texts
- Remotely locate your misplaced phone
- The easiest way to make hands-free calls
Learn more about the Galaxy Gear here.
3. Remote Control Helicopter
The perfect gift for anyone who's still fun-at-heart, Costco's remote control helicopter will provide hours of entertainment for the whole family this season.
- Flies up to 200 yards
- 2 speed settings for controlled flights or tricks and aerobatics
- Swappable battery lets you switch batteries so you don’t have to wait for recharging
Learn more about the helicopter here.
4. 'Jackery Giant+' Backup Charger
The compact device provides an astounding 220 hours of power to recharge iPhones, iPads, iPods, Samsung Galaxy products, Google phones, and more. Give this to the gadget-addicted person on your gift list.
- Fits easily into any bag or pocket: 4.3 x 3.1 x 0.8 inches, 10.4 ounces
- Super-fast charge output (5V / 3A)
- Includes a convenient flashlight
Learn more about the Jackery Giant+ here.
5. 'Fujitsu ScanSnap' Mobile Scanner
Know someone who'd love to go paperless in 2014? Or perhaps just your everyday clipped recipe-hoarder? Give them the gift of decluttering in the form of a mobile scanner. Fujitsu's ScanSnap is well-reviewed and light enough to come along anywhere.
- Fast color, grayscale and monochrome scan speeds of up to 12 double-sided pages per minute
- 11.2 x 3.9 x 3 inches, 4.9 pounds
- Upload directly to Shoeboxed, Dropbox, GoogleDocs and others
Learn more about the Fujitsu ScanSnap here.
Dan Moshe and Tech Guru wish everyone a joy-filled holiday season. If you want to tech your company up a notch in the new year, click to contact the caring IT company for small businesses in Minneapolis!
Everyone's favorite customer service manager, Maria Lundberg, is now just a few clicks from helping you get your IT solution. Follow the steps below, and we're sure this will become your favorite way to get tech help in a hurry during business hours.
Tech Guru's convenient new instant-chat support feature makes it easy to get help with computer problems. Simply right-click on the Tech Guru "stack of stones" icon on the bottom right of your task bar and choose "Chat with Support." A browser window will open and you'll be connected with Maria who can assist you!
You can access this feature directly by typing this address into any web browser: techguruit.com/chat.
Tech Guru is the Caring IT company for small businesses in Minneapolis.
Clients of Tech Guru know that service from the Minneapolis tech support provider always returns to the "Three Uniques" of the Tech Guru philosophy. Technology should be simple, responsive, and invisible - all with the greater goal of furthering your organization's vision. In this article, CEO and founder Dan Moshe explains how Technology Should be Invisible.
It Should Allow You to Do Your Job
"IT doesn't slow you down!" argues Dan, eager to refute thhose who view technology as burdensome. "It gives you the information you need as a manager to make smart decisions." What do you do with smooth behind-the-scenes tech operations? The answer can range from "business as usual" to "business, better than ever." Productivity can reign without the headaches of tech hiccups.
It Should Be Self-Healing
"Technology should be automated," says Dan, "and it should notify the right people so it's fixed before there's any downtime." Is it hard to imagine a work environment that's all uptime, no downtime? Not for Tech Guru. IT should be convenient, giving you easy access to the things you need, when you need them.
It Should Just Work
"Clients say it all the time," Dan explains. "Technology should just work. We get it, and we agree." Invisibility means that if you notice your technology, there's probably something wrong. Tech Guru believes you should just go and do your thing - technology is there to support you.
So is Tech Guru. Need some more invisible support for your company or nonprofit? Let's talk.
Dan Moshe is founder and CEO of Minneapolis tech support company Tech Guru.
Come meet, greet, and eat in the Tech Guru conference room as VP of Operations Micah Thor explains the ins and outs of cloud desktops.
Find the Right Fit
We're not here to sell you on cloud desktop. In fact, it's not for everyone - only about half our clients have made the transition to the cloud.
If it works for you, the positives can be numerous:
- No more buying servers
- Nore more worries about backing up and disaster recovery
- Apps become accessible for your team from anywhere
The Dollars Make Sense
Micah will help you understand the true cost of your current IT, including hidden costs you may not be aware of. Cloud desktop can make the cost of IT much more transparent and completely scaleable.
Micah's presentation will include:
- A real-life client case study
- A live demo
- Q & A
And, did we mention? Lunch is on us!
November's Lunch Learning Series filled up in a hurry - don't delay in registering!
You can always count on Tech Guru - yep, even on the holidays when our office is closed. Check out these special notes on how to reach us when we're out of the office.
Office Closed Dates
There are only four days in the next two months of 2013 when we will be closed for a holiday:
11/28, 11/29, 12/25, 1/1
Please make a note of these dates.
How to Reach Us
Do all the things you'd do on any other business day you'd need to reach us. Call our office and LEAVE A MESSAGE. This is key in order to have a person respond to your issue.
If the matter is urgent, you can call and follow the prompts to use the automated voicemail paging system. Indicate the best number to reach you and the nature of the problem.
Again, be sure to call and leave a message for issues that need to be resolved during the holiday. Any emails received will be responded to on the next business day.
We wish you the happiest of holidays!
Clients call the Tech Guru staff reliable, knowledgable, and responsive. Another recurring theme? Each staff member has plenty of outside interests. Tech Guru's advanced service desk analyst Joe Kessler is no exception. With hobbies such as hunting, fishing, cooking, and travel, the man stays busy during off hours.
Travel with the Touch of a Screen
Who says you can't mix business and pleasure? Joe traveled to Southern California with his wife Sarah and daughter Sophia, age six. He couldn't help but take the tech-savvy route. "We did the entire trip from our phones," says Joe. "We got boarding passes through Passbook on my iPhone, and we used the Delta app to check in and scan luggage tags."
Joe and his family met a California client in person for the first time at the gates of Disneyland. She and her son joined the Kesslers for a day at the Happiest Place on Earth. "We all had a great time, and we used the Disneyland app to access maps of the park."
The highlight of the vacation for Joe's thrill-fanatic daughter was their day at Six Flags Magic Mountain theme park, where she tackled Lex Luther Drop of Doom, the Superman ride, and X2, rated the #1 roller coaster in the entire world. "Sophia loved it and wanted to do it again," but the hour and a half wait prevented them from another round.
Casting a Line up North
Sophia may have had her first visit to the ocean in California, but the Kesslers are no strangers to the water. Fishing runs in the family. Joe's parents take Sophia and a cousin every year, and Joe enjoyed a September fishing trip with his dad in Canada. The father and son stayed at Boreal Bay Lodge in Nester Falls, Ontario, catching trout, cappies, smallmouth, walleye, and northern. The only photo Joe managed to take with a fish was of his smallest catch. "It was ridiculous, how small this fish was," says Joe with a laugh.
Big Game Requires Big Freezers
Joe's hoping to catch his first deer this winter when hunting season begins on November 9. He had been intersted in hunting for a long time, and finally gave it a try with a friend three years ago. He has since hunted with his brother-in-law and father-in-law, and hopes to get out every weekend until Thanksgiving.
Joe doesn't have a big freezer (yet!), so once his deer is caught he'll store most of it at his parents' house, where they have two chest freezers. Hey, how about saving some for the next client barbecue?
Want to learn more about the Tech Guru staff? Here are a few articles you might have missed.
As technology experts who solve tech problems all over Minneapolis, the folks at Tech Guru understand. Mobile security isn't something you want to think about. You want your mobile device to make you smarter, more productive, more successful, and better looking, but words like "encryption" and "phishing" take away from the glamour of your gadget. It's time to debunk what you thought was true about mobile security.
Myth #1: Securing Your Device is Complicated
Whether securing your smartphone, tablet, or laptop, taking the necessary steps need not be difficult. Even making the most preliminary moves towards security can save you serious problems down the road. Take a few minutes now to do the following:
Auto-lock the device after 5 minutes idle.
Enable automatic updates for apps and operating system.
Disable Bluetooth and Wifi radios when not in use.
Myth #2: It Won't Happen to You
Scammers abound when searching the web, and using the web on a mobile device only makes you more vulnerable to becoming a victim. One step you can take to protect yourself is to understand the anatomy of a URL.
- pagename.aspx – name of the web page on the server
- /blog – folder on the server
- .com – Top Level Domain
- techguruit – domain name
- www. – subdomain
The domain name (between the first set of dots from the right) is the root domain and ultimately
the source of your website. The domain name must be registered with a domain registrar.
Subdomains, folder names, and page names can all be easily manipulated. Be wary of URLs
with lots of subdomains strung together. Even better, enter the URL yourself in a browser to go
directly to the website instead of clicking on the link.
Myth #3: You're on Your Own
Your IT department or tech support company is made for a crisis. A breach in security should be acted upon quickly, and depending on the severity of the problem, you may want to get your favorite IT person involved.
Call for IT help if:
Your email account is sending spam messages to your contacts
You think you might have entered information into a phishing website
Your phone is lost or stolen
You are not sure if an app is safe to install
Taking steps to mobile security can be simple. Our two-page FREE whitepaper download on mobile security gives you all the details you need to ensure a secure connection, wherever you go.
Dan Moshe is founder and CEO of Minneapolis IT support company Tech Guru.