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The Personal Business Plan: A Blueprint for Running Your Life
The Personal Business Plan: A Blueprint for Running Your Life
by Stephen Bruyant-Langer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.88

3.0 out of 5 stars Structured navel gazing, 11 Nov. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
An interesting idea - conducting a personal audit using a business plan framework of SWOT analysis and other models. I found it a bit pat and not really that helpful. There were several exercises I completed that took time and yet didn't yield anything in the way of new insights. Maybe it's for people who aren't that self aware and don't actually know what job they enjoyed, have never stopped to think what their strengths and weaknesses might be and who need the structure, language and cross references of a business guide to do some of this stuff. In any event, none of this is necessarily time wasted and the topics and verbiage are pertinent, it just didn't really resonate for me.


ASUS RP-N53 Dual-Band Wirless-N600 Range Extender (IEEE802.11 a/b/g/n) with Signal Indicator and One-Touch Blue LED Light
ASUS RP-N53 Dual-Band Wirless-N600 Range Extender (IEEE802.11 a/b/g/n) with Signal Indicator and One-Touch Blue LED Light
Offered by myGadgetsandGames LTD
Price: £49.90

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does what it says, 31 Oct. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A very neat little way to extend a wireless network. You just connect it to your existing wireless router to set it up, then move it near the spot you need more wireless and hey presto, improved coverage.

I have used Powerline adapters before and these do provide a quicker and possibly more stable internet service, but the wires get in the way and limit movement. This device is a good compromise, easy to set up and use and therefore is thoroughly recommended.


Russell Hobbs 19144 Heritage Kettle, 1.8 L - Metallic Graphite Grey
Russell Hobbs 19144 Heritage Kettle, 1.8 L - Metallic Graphite Grey
Offered by L.M Electrical
Price: £44.49

2.0 out of 5 stars Style over substance, 17 Oct. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Great looking kettle - graphite, black and shiny bits, all very retro and good to look at.

But as a kettle? Not so great really. The water level is hard to read and doesn't react quickly, so it's hard to tell how much water is in the thing. Then the spout is right under the handle, which makes for compromised filling. It's slow to get going and takes longer than my bog standard model and finally, the handle gets very hot when you're pouring the water out, the boiling vapour hitting your hand.

Give it a miss!


How to Become a Successful Consultant in Your Own Field
How to Become a Successful Consultant in Your Own Field
by Hubert Bermont
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 11 Oct. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I worked for 20+ years in Finance, advising companies under the umbrella of the bank or consultancy I was employed by. When it came time to cut the umbilical cord and do it myself, I had little idea how to go about touting for work, what to charge, how to secure my first client, how to handle requests for contingency or discounted fees, what to do about difficult clients and how to avoid giving too much free advice to establish my credentials. I made just about every mistake you could possibly make and nearly concluded that I was just hopeless.

Then I read this book. It is simply revelatory. Bermont has faced all of the issues I faced and more. And yet he was able to set himself up successfully and his advice on how to go about this is convincing and easily adopted.

I can't recommend this book highly enough if you have experience in your field that you'd like to turn into consulting revenues. It may look like an old fashioned text book, but it's easily read, written from a first person perspective, funny in parts and deeply knowledgeable and dare I say empowering. Thanks Hubert!


Fly Gun
Fly Gun
Offered by Accessory-Shop
Price: £2.25

2.0 out of 5 stars Fun but rubbish!, 10 Oct. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Fly Gun
Shooting this thing is quite fun - and my kids love it. But it's so inaccurate, it's utterly useless at hitting flies. Mine hits somewhere left and below where targeted, but the degree of inaccuracy changes with each shot, so we're yet to hit a single fly, even when compensating for the useless aim.

Back to conventional fly swatters for me! Meanwhile, the kids have had some reasonably safe fun.


LeapFrog Learn to Write with Mr. Pencil Learning Toy
LeapFrog Learn to Write with Mr. Pencil Learning Toy
Offered by PROSPEROUS
Price: £16.50

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Simple fun, 24 Sept. 2013
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A big chunky pen that can be used on an iPad to play various word and number games.

My five year old enjoyed playing with this and anything that helps her practice and concentrate is good.


LeapFrog Creativity Camera App with Protective Case (Green)
LeapFrog Creativity Camera App with Protective Case (Green)
Offered by SYARAKU STORE
Price: £10.73

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great idea, 24 Sept. 2013
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A hard plastic outer case that houses your iphone and allows children to play, bash and drop your iphone without too much damage. My 5 year old loved it, although ejecting the phone from the case a call came through was less than straightforward.

The camera makes a satisfying click, the viewfinder works perfectly and smudgey fingers are kept clear of the iphone's screen. Great idea!


Nine Minutes on Monday: The Quick and Easy Way to Go From Manager to Leader
Nine Minutes on Monday: The Quick and Easy Way to Go From Manager to Leader
by Robbins
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £18.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some good sense, 24 Sept. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Although the title reminded me of the nutter offering to outdo 'Eight Minute Abs' with his own revolutionary concept - Seven Minute Abs, this is a very sensible management book which acts as a good reminder of the key elements of strategy we all need to bear in mind when getting bogged down in execution and tactics.

Drawing on Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs, Robbins outlines 4 key needs - care, mastery, recognition and purpose. The first part of his idea is that meeting these needs contributes to employee engagement and productivity. The second part is help with planning your time, to help address employee needs in a manageable fashion.

The book isn't going to change the world, but its suggestions are useful, practical and you can see how they can be incorporated into a regular workload so that good management techniques become second nature. Some of the Americanisms may jar - "What leadership quality will you model this week" sort of thing - and I'd also suggest that if you adopt the sincere model of praising one employee a week, it won't be long before they see you coming a mile off, but nevertheless, some good leadership ideas, easily read text, good examples and the execution is really down to you.


Grow the Core: How to Focus on Your Core Business for Brand Success
Grow the Core: How to Focus on Your Core Business for Brand Success
by Dave Taylor
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £15.90

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Core Blimey!, 24 Sept. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The business world is littered with companies who've come a cropper trying to dabble outside their core competence - RMC (disastrously into cement), Blackberry (consumer phones), Woolworth (vast out of town stores) and Virgin (cola, vodka, electricity, weddings, holidays, jeans, cosmetics, cars, clothes, wine etc).

This book demonstrates how the best companies have been able to stretch their offering to incorporate new lines by leveraging key strengths to enter or create new markets. It cites successful extensions such as Apple into mobile phones, Kellogs into cereal bars and Dove into beauty-care products and tries to draw parallels to help business owners see what extensions might work and what might drag the business down.

The book is well written, has excellent examples and makes its case very clearly. Highly recommended.


The Wolf Princess
The Wolf Princess
by Cathryn Constable
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 23 Sept. 2013
This review is from: The Wolf Princess (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
My 9 year old daughter loved this. The set-up is suitably dire - young girl packed off to boarding school on the death of her parents by uncaring guardian, she experiences adventure, danger and excitement on a trip to Russia that goes wrong. Absorbing, fast paced and action packed, this was a rewarding read with similar themes to The Little White Horse, The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events) and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia Modern).


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