Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Small Business Spotlight - The Cupertino Soap Company!

In keeping with my goal to promote 
Small Business.....
Access Profiles' Small Business Spotlight 
shines on Veronica Nourse and 
The Cupertino Soap Company!

One day while working for a fair trade company, Veronica Nourse and a friend started discussing what they would do if they could simply do anything they wanted. Veronica’s friend said she wanted to make handmade soap.

What was Veronica’s response?  “You can make your own soap?”

Nourse had never given soap-making any thought.  It seemed so much easier and cheaper to simply buy it at the local grocer.  

But Nourse was intrigued.  She asked her friend a million questions about soap-making and, according to Nourse, this started her head spinning “in all sorts of directions”.

Nourse then began her own research, and what she found amazed her.  The number of chemicals in commercially produced soap was staggering.  Many of the ingredients she couldn’t even pronounce.

At that same time, both Nourse and her son had skin problems.  
Nourse’s dry skin and eczema were something she had thought she would just have to live with.  She had even tried consulting doctors, but nothing seemed to help.

So while doing her soap research, Nourse discovered ingredients she could use that were both beneficial to the skin and wonderful to the senses.  She found that quality soap could be made using natural and nourishing oils, butters, and essential oils that make your skin really healthy.

Through a lot of trial and error, Nourse started making soap that actually made a huge difference in her and her son’s skin.  She wanted to share this with her friends.  Despite meeting with very little interest at first, Nourse decided to give her soap to them as gifts.

Soon her friends discovered that Nourse’s soaps lathered better, made their skin feel softer and smell better than any commercial soap.  They also no longer needed to use moisturizer.  

They were hooked.....
and The Cupertino Soap Company was born!

The Cupertino Soap Company is a small, family owned business located in Cupertino, CA.  Nourse is proud to offer the quality, handmade products she herself developed.

Cupertino Soap’s mission is 
to make safe products for your body 
while also keeping the planet safe.  
Nourse has been verified as a 
Green Company
and never tests on animals.

Most of The Cupertino Soap Company’s handcrafted soaps contain shea butter, cocoa butter, hemp seed oil and olive oil.  Some contain goat’s milk.  All ingredients are organic and natural. Nourse prides herself on only using the best herbs, botanicals, and spices in her soap.

Nourse admits that she is now a “soap-a-holic”.  She loves trying a new soap fragrance or blend, and keeps multiple soaps throughout her house.  She considers her soaps “an affordable luxury”!

Visit The Cupertino Soap Company Website, Facebook page, and etsy shop to see for yourself the wonderful soaps Veronica Nourse has to offer!  You will be glad you did (and I know since I have ordered soaps from her myself!).

Authored by

For more information 
about and for Small Business, 
check out my Website and online paper, "Access Profiles Weekly".  
Thanks, and remember to “Shop Small”!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Do “Nice” People Really Finish Last?

Will being Nice make You Less Successful?

Consider these words from Charles Kuralt:
“Everyday kindness......more than makes up for the acts of greed in the headlines.” 
The reality is.....there are many Nice and Kind People in this World! 
These people recognize the importance of caring for their fellow man. They also understand that words and actions do have consequences and can effect those around us ~ a fact that seems to be lost on some. 

Our news and media certainly don't help to dispel that. Instead, of stories focused on the good in this world, we are pummeled by stories that depict us at our worst.

It is easy to believe that acting with kindness and being nice are simply dying traits.

Believing that is especially easy when it comes to business.

Many of us fall prey to the belief that in order to succeed we have to be ruthless and driven. That climbing the ladder and achieving some arbitrary level of success defines us as a professional and as a person. We may even come to believe that the “ends justify the means”.

Being "Nice" simply doesn't fit into that equation.

It doesn't have to be that way. We don't need to choose between gaining success and being “nice” and kind. We can do both.
In fact, I believe that the more likable we are, the more we can achieve.  

People naturally gravitate towards nice people. We want them as our friends and we go to them for advice and understanding.

Likable people are not self-centered. They genuinely care about others and are willing to take the time to cultivate a friendship through concrete actions. Despite having a busy day, they will meet a friend for lunch or take that phone call. It is not all about them.

So why not take that “likability” and apply it to how you do business?
As entrepreneurs, a major goal should be helping our customers. To that end we try to provide quality products or services that solve their problems or fulfill their needs. Having this as our focus allows us to concentrate on our clients and partner with them so that they can achieve their own success.

Our emphasis should be on what we can do for them, not on making a sale or pushing our latest and greatest. If we conduct our business with that in mind, we will better serve our existing clients and attract new ones.

The truth is, any time we make our business decisions based only on our own priorities, those priorities are misguidedInstead, those decisions should be made on what our clients want and need.


Now it's time to take that extra step and use the qualities associated with being nice and likable in our business! Focus on our clients. Take time to reach out. Check in with them to discuss their progress or just to say hello.

Being likable in business is the same as being likable in your personal life. By “humanizing” your business, you are able to start real conversations with your clients, like you do with your friends, and create a genuine relationship.

This is especially true for Small Business!
When you are accessible and engaging with your customers, you are also more approachable, something that can really benefit a Small Business. Clients will feel more comfortable contacting you with questions and concerns. They will also feel like they are being listened to and taken seriously. They will feel like a priority. 

Then it is important to follow that customer focus up with strong skills and expertise.

Your business has to offer quality products and services. You need to be expert in what you do and make sure your clients are getting more than what they expect.

But being nice does not mean you should be a pushover. Acting with fairness also means being fair to yourself and your business. And being taken advantage of need not be tolerated. That is when you should distance yourself from those that are not on the same page.

This is simply good for you and your business!

Learn more tips to help you achieve stellar customer service in "Is Your Customer Service everything it Needs to Be?". 

Being nice and likable, and then following that up with tangible actions, will yield you the loyal customers every business craves....and help you achieve your own business goals! 

So, to answer the question posed at the beginning of this article, Do “nice” people really finish last? My answer is a resounding NO! 
Nice and likable people really achieve the true success we should all strive to obtain!
And You can do it too!

*This article has also been published on LinkedIn blogs.

Authored by

Get more tips to help your small business on our website.  And Contact Us! We would love to help you achieve your own success!

Also, learn more About Us and our Background Investigation, Business Mentoring, and Security Consulting services too! 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Save Our Environment ~ Shop Local!

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtfully committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
 ~ Margaret Mead

April is Earth Month. It is a time we all take stock of what we are doing and what we can do to help Save our Planet. A new or renewed focus will be placed on recycling, saving energy, and a myriad of other things to help lead us all in the right direction.

These are all worthwhile and important steps. But I believe we can accomplish these goals in another surprising way....by Shopping Local!

When we Shop Local, we have the opportunity to make a huge impact on our environment and in our community. It is also a great way to promote Small Business.

Shopping Local uses less fuel. 
The markets and shops we visit are right in our own neighborhood. The fuel used by trucks that carry the goods from the local farmer or manufacturer is also lessened. When we buy local, we conserve that energy.

Local goods use less packaging. 
Whether it is the produce from a local farmer’s market or some other good from a neighborhood store, the packaging is often minimal when compared to nationally sold goods.

Shopping Local helps our Community.  
By frequenting local merchants, we become active and important members of our neighborhoods. We become acquainted with the owners of those businesses and they get to know us. This creates a real sense of “community” and connection.

Shopping local keeps our money “in town”. 
Money we spend at a local storefront or farmer’s market is a true reinvestment in our community. In this way we can have a real economic impact in helping support and grow local business.

In this past few years, we at API have answered the “Shop Local” call.

Once a week we like to go out for breakfast. Instead of going to the chain we used to frequent, we have now made a habit of eating in a variety of our local diners. These cafes are owned and staffed by people right in our own neighborhood. Many use local produce, bread, and other goods and services whenever possible.

We have come to know the people who work in these restaurants and often see many of our neighbors doing the same. Eating "small" and local has really created a sense of community in ourselves and given us the feeling we are helping “friends”.

We have also been more frequent customers of local barber shops, hair salons, and groceries.  

It's time we all make it a real commitment to Shop LocalThe benefits to our environment, communities, and Small Business can really make a difference!
Please Share This & Leave a Comment. We would love to hear what you think about "Shopping Local"!

Authored by

API can Help You and Your Small Business!
Contact Us for more Information!
API can Help You!
Also visit our Background Investigation, Business Mentoring, Security Consulting, and About Us pages to find out more!


Sunday, April 14, 2013

The PREVENTION of Child Abuse Should be Our Ultimate Goal

“The sexual abuse and exploitation of children is one of the most vicious crimes conceivable, a violation of mankind's most basic duty to protect the innocent.”  James T. Walsh  (U.S. Politician)

No one argues that child abuse is a horrific crime.  Whether that abuse is physical or emotional, the victims are left to deal with the scars of that abuse for the rest of their lives.

Our laws tend to place the emphasis on dealing with the aftermath of Child Abuse.  We have programs to help the victims as well as methods of prosecuting the perpetrators.

I think it is time we change that focus.  As a nation, we need to place our focus on stopping child abuse in all its forms.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, a perfect time for our emphasis to be placed squarely on the word “Prevention”.

As I have written in a previous post, there are two different categories of abuse:

  • Domestic – abuse by a family member or caregiver

  • Institutional – abuse within a facility or a program such as schools, day care centers, after school programs or sports teams

The abuse in each of these cases can cover physical abuse, sexual abuse, and emotional abuse.

Our goal as a society should be to recognize where abuse occurs and vow to do everything in our power to prevent any child from being a victim.  The question then becomes, “What Can We Do?”.

I believe we can all pledge to:

  • Prevent the Abuse – Undoubtably our best tool and is to take a “proactive” approach.  We must require all people who come in contact with our children to undergo a Background Check.  I would also suggest this be repeated every 2 years in order to prevent those committing more recent crimes from slipping through the cracks.  This should not be at the discretion of each institution, but national law.  Consistency is the key here.

  • Support Programs of Education and Stress Management - Providing our communities with the resources to aide parents and other adults who come in contact with children is crucial.  These programs should educate on how best to deal with the stresses of child care.  We also must make safe and affordable child care available to all.

  • Encourage Open Discussion about Abuse – We need to make sure that the subject of abuse is “brought into the light”.  Every child needs to be equipped with the knowledge that abuse can occur in many different places and they should never feel embarrassed or at fault for the actions of an adult.   

  • Provide “Safe Havens” to Report the Abuse -  It is also necessary to provide every child with the tools to know what to do and where they can go if they feel uneasy or unsafe.  They also need to recognize they will be believed and helped there.

The Prevention of Child Abuse needs to fall on the shoulders of our society’s adults.  We must make it our duty to protect our children and provide for them a world where they are safe and encouraged to succeed.  Only then will our society be truly great.  After all, our children are our future.

“The ultimate test of a moral society is the kind of world that it leaves to its children.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (German Theologian)

If you would like additional information on how Background Checks can be tools for safety, please visit my website at www.accessprofiles.com and my Facebook page.  Thanks!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

"Small Business Spotlight" Wants to Feature Your Small Business!

Making Small Business Grow!

I have already had some great feedback on the previous articles in my series, "Small Business Spotlight", so I would like to repeat this offer......... 

I am once again Calling all Small Businesses!  I would love to Feature YOU in my ongoing series, "Small Business Spotlight"! 

My goal is to promote Small Business by highlighting a different company, both in my blog and in my online paper, Access Profiles Weekly!  I will also post your article on my social sites.

Every "Small Business Spotlight" article is designed as an Introduction to the featured Business.  

If you choose to have your company featured, I will include a spotlight of what your business has to offer and provide a little background on how you got started.  Your article would also include links to your business website and other social media pages.

By sharing this series, I hope to give my readers a chance to find out a little more about your Small Business and generate interest in “Shopping Small”.  It is also a great way for me to help "Pay it Forward"!

I believe there is a renewed focus on Small Business and I want to keep the momentum going!


If you are interested in this opportunity to promote your Small Business, I invite you to contact me at through this blog or at accessprofiles2@comcast.net.

There is no charge for this.  It is simply my way of "paying it forward" and helping other Small Business owners get recognized.

To check out previous articles in the Small Business Spotlight series (and to get an idea of what kind of information I highlight), please visit my blog (and why not leave your email while you are there so you won't miss an article!).

I also share information of interest to Small Business on my Facebook page and website, www.accessprofiles.com!

Thanks, and I hope to get the chance to help promote Your Small Business!

Go Small Business!

Authored by

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Why "Leaning In" is not a Reality for Every Woman!


As women continue to strive for better opportunities in the workplace, I take a look back at my thoughts on what Sheryl Sandberg's words "Lean In" really mean to women.....

Unless you have been completely shut off from the world, it is clear that Sheryl Sandberg's words on "Leaning In" have generated controversy.  Many women are emphatic that Sandberg is coming from an “elitist” point of view and others are supporting her words and saying we simply have to “work harder”.

Let’s face it....not everyone can “Lean In”.  "Tweet This"!

Unique life circumstances cause us all to be very different and come from very different experiences.  That is what makes everyone so interesting.

Opinions on Sandberg’s words run the gamut from complete agreement to openly angered by what she has to say.  I venture to say most fall somewhere in the middle.  But all sides feel justified in their beliefs and disdain for the beliefs of others.

What can’t be ignored is the fact that many feel Sandberg does not speak for the opportunities open to all women - although I believe that she had no intention to do so.  It is obvious that the resources available to Sandberg are certainly not those available to all. 

What I find most disturbing are not Sandberg’s words, but the divisiveness and “bashing” they have unleashed.  Instead of being confrontational, we should be promoting a sense of unity.

It is hard for me to understand why any of us, as women, feel the need to criticize another woman for their choices or circumstances.  It is unproductive at its best and can be crippling at its worst.   

These words from Elizabeth Harrison (American Educator. 1849-1927) say it well;

“Those who are lifting the world upward and onward are those who encourage more than criticize.”

Our goal should be to advance the circumstances of all women.  We need to be there as supporters, mentors, and role models if necessary.  Check out an earlier blog post I wrote on this subject for more of my thoughts; Women in Business - My Case for Why We Need to Help Ourselves!.

Similar issues arise with the phrase “have it all” that is often bandied about.  The reality is that, for most of us, we are simply juggling in order to make things work at even the most basic level.

In most cases, it is not possible to “have it all” at any one time.   Our lives  are an ebb and flow that requires us to concentrate more on one thing than another depending on our circumstances.  That is when we have to make tough decisions based on what is best for our families.  

It is then that we have to focus on what we need to at the moment, put our all into that, then be ready to shift gears when our circumstances change.  In that way we are able to experience professional as well as personal success within our lifetime.

I discuss more of what I believe is life's "seesaw" here!

I close with these words by Kate Seredy, author;

"I make money using my brains and lose money listening to my heart. But in the long run, my books balance pretty well." 

Balancing my books over the long haul is my goal.  And, really, what more can we ask for?

Please "Pay it Forward" and share my article.  I would also love to hear from you ~ Leave a Comment!

Authored by

For more on Women in Business and other Small Business issues, please visit my website at www.accessprofilesblog.com!

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