Managing Interruptions: Try These 5 Practical Time Management Strategies

As a business leader, it’s extremely likely that you’re being pulled in many different directions – often away from the tasks you’re trying to accomplish.  So many of our clients have reported that they often arrive at the end of the workday only to find that they’ve barely put a dent in their to-do lists.  If that sounds familiar, you aren’t alone. But it doesn’t have to stay that way. Ultimately, you can maximize your productivity by implementing any number … Read More

Don’t Let These Workplace Conflict Resolution Myths Derail Your Business

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Conflicts in the workplace are inevitable.  We spend 35% (or more) of our waking hours with our coworkers, and at least some of those hours are stressful ones, so it makes sense that there will be the occasional disagreement, misunderstanding or cumulative frustrations that bubble over.  Managers are generally the first line of defense in dealing with these issues, but most of them lack the conflict resolution skills necessary to do so effectively.  If that sounds uncomfortably familiar, don’t worry … Read More

Breathe Easy: 3 Transformational Tips to Reduce Stress at Work

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It’s no secret that stress can be incredibly damaging to your health and wellbeing, and yet, few of us take proactive steps to reduce stress at work (which inevitably impacts our personal lives, too).  In a world that’s faster paced and more connected than ever before, it’s no surprise that an increasing number of professionals are struggling to balance demanding job responsibilities, hectic schedules and constantly evolving technologies.  It’s also no surprise that it’s taking a toll on individual health … Read More

A Step-by-Step Guide for Creating Success Strategies

It’s pretty safe to say that every business leader (and up-and-coming professional) wants to succeed in their role – but that doesn’t happen by accident.  If you’ve looked around and wondered if others knew some “success secret” that you simply aren’t privy to, you aren’t alone.  The truth of the matter is that those high-producing, goal-achieving colleagues have likely put a great deal of thought into their success strategies. Getting Started: The 7 Success Principles In a recent post, we … Read More

How to Be a Better Leader – Say Goodbye to These 3 Management Habits

There’s no denying that there’s been a change, an evolution, in the business world – especially when it comes to the relationship between an organization and its employees.  As employees’ needs, values and expectations shift, employers are increasingly recognizing that they must adapt to the modern workforce if they’re going to attract and retain top-quality employees.  One element of that adaptation is welcoming opportunities to help each manager be a better leader. Why Leadership Styles & Management Habits Matter We … Read More

Effective Leadership: 5 Ways to Help Employees Be Their Best

A manager’s job is a hundred times easier when his or her team operates like a well-oiled machine, but that level of teamwork and engagement doesn’t happen by accident.  Effective leadership centers around the ability to unleash the potential of each team member – to coordinate their skills and channel their enthusiasm in a way that maximizes the team’s productivity. If you don’t innately understand how to do this, have no fear – you aren’t alone.  Effective leadership skills are … Read More

Uncover Lost Profits in 6 Steps – The Power of Strategic Business Units

We’d all probably agree that diversifying your company’s product lines or service offerings is a good idea, but there’s also a risk that accompanies multi-product/multi-service business models.  It can be become incredibly challenging to maintain a clear view of what’s working (or not) when it comes to individual products/services, so it becomes harder to make well-informed, targeted decisions.  That’s where Strategic Business Units come into play. The concept of Strategic Business Units (SBUs) centers around the idea that each product … Read More

Profit Potential: Assessing The 4 Categories of Products & Services

If you’re like most business leaders, you want to maximize the profitability of your products and/or services.  But you also likely recognize that success means managing your time and resources effectively.  Before launching a new sales strategy or marketing campaign, it’s important to first look at the profit potential of each of your products/services – empowering you to make the best decisions possible for allocating your resources. The 4 Categories of Products and Services Step back and think about your … Read More

Achieve Your Goals Faster with the Guaranteed Success Formula

There’s no doubt that, at some point in your professional journey, someone has stressed the importance of setting goals – and rightfully so.  Well-crafted goals are essential for getting you from where you are today to where you want to be in the future.  However, if you’re like most of us, you can probably point to multiple times where you set some goals but lost track of them in the weeks that followed.  It’s time to shift your mentality from … Read More

The 2 Most Overlooked Secrets to Customer Satisfaction (and Employee Engagement)

From small business owners to CEOs of global corporations – we’re all searching for ways to develop a growing, loyal base of customers.  After all, logic says that the more satisfied customers you have, the better your bottom line will be.  And, while that’s not wrong, this type of anecdote doesn’t provide any answers to the question on all of our minds: how do I maximize customer satisfaction? Back in 2001 – when Continental Airlines was transforming from one of … Read More

Sales Techniques: Applying the 80/20 Rule to the Sales Process

Often, when we talk about sales techniques, we explore concepts like “closing techniques” or “overcoming objections.”  And while these are incredibly important for sales success, there’s a foundational skill that has an even greater impact on your ability to thrive in sales: time management. As a salesperson or sales manager, you know that your time is your most precious resource – but you likely also have experienced that feeling that there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to get … Read More

4 Core Employee Needs & Their Role in Employee Engagement

It’s probably safe to say that most business leaders understand (at least anecdotally) that there’s a direct link between employee engagement, individual productivity and the company’s overall success.  Strategies for increasing employee engagement attempt to bridge the gaps between these three elements, so your employees become more invested and fulfilled, your teams achieve their goals more consistently and your company delivers more efficiently on its promises. In their 2017 State of the American Workplace report, Gallup estimated that only 33% … Read More

Sales Secrets: How a Unique Selling Proposition Increases Conversions

In every sales effectiveness training program, sales professionals learn that customers don’t buy products/services – they buy solutions to their problems; they buy excitement; they buy hope.  And yet, many business and sales leaders continue to position their messaging from the company’s perspective.  By identifying your competitive advantage and using it to craft a unique selling proposition, you begin to unlock messaging that not only resonates with your customers but also prompts action. What is a Unique Selling Proposition (and … Read More

KWINK Analysis: How Top Business Leaders Leverage Zero Base Thinking

Have you ever wondered what ‘success secrets’ today’s top business leaders have learned that the rest of us haven’t?  If you are like most of us, it can feel as though they are able to accomplish more with their 24 hours than we’re able to – but we can’t figure out why.  The (not-so) secret?  They put a great deal of work into developing their time management strategies, including zero base thinking. Zero Base Thinking & Letting Go of the … Read More

The 3 Closing Techniques Your Sales Team Needs to Know

All too often, sales directors and executives consider the importance of developing an effective sales strategy over developing the skills of their sales team.  While, of course, a sales strategy is integral to sales success, it’s meaningless unless you also have a team who can implement it.  From prospecting to overcoming objections to closing techniques, sales skills are learned and honed over time. When approaching the final stages of the sales process, it’s common for anxiety to build inside the … Read More

A Mission Statement: Your ‘North Star’ for Navigating Success

Do you feel like your business is lacking direction?  Are you finding it challenging to inspire loyalty and commitment from your employees?  Does your team understand what your company does and what it stands for?  Do you? A mission statement provides the guidance and direction necessary to achieve ultimate success while instilling a sense of meaning and purpose throughout your organization – aligning the everyday work with the bigger picture.  To put it another way, if your strategic plan is … Read More

Sales Funnel 101: What It Is and Why You Need It

Although most of us wish the sales process was as simple as “a prospect has a need” followed by “the prospect buys from us” – we all know that’s not the case.  The truth is that the sales process is complicated and challenging, and we’re all constantly looking for ways to close more deals and drive more sales.  This is where your understanding of the sales funnel comes into play. What is a Sales Funnel? From identifying that they have … Read More

Simplify Employee Reviews: 6 Steps for Effectively Tracking Performance

Despite the growing push towards using on-going coaching conversations to promote a more engaged workforce, annual or semi-annual employee reviews continue to be a key tool for many organizations who aren’t ready to make the transition.  Preparation for this formal process often feels tedious, and both managers and employees often find the resulting discussion to be uncomfortable.  But it doesn’t have to be! Most often, preparing for employee reviews feels tedious because most of us don’t have a record of … Read More

The Coaching Mindset: 5 Steps for Becoming a Highly Effective Manager

The most critical function of your company’s management team is to help employees and staff strategically navigate the workload – systematically completing tasks and achieving goals.  That means that your organization’s success is largely dependent on each manager’s ability to maximize the productivity of their subordinates. By teaching supervisors about the difference between a managing versus coaching methodology and embracing a “coaching mindset” throughout your organization, you’ll find that you’re not only building a team of highly effective managers, but … Read More

3 Strategic Planning Myths That May Be Holding You Back

What C-suite executive doesn’t love the words ‘strategic’ and ‘planning’?  After all, strategic implies an outlet for you to apply your business acumen and carefully honed skills, and planning gives you a sense of control over future outcomes.  It’s no wonder ‘strategic planning’ has become such a predominant buzzword across all industries. Unfortunately, as strategic planning continues to become an increasingly mainstream topic, some common myths and misconceptions have taken root in the business community – and are holding many … Read More

Decoding DISC Assessments & Building More Productive Teams

An increasing number of business owners, CEOs, and senior managers are embracing the transformational impact of behavioural assessments for achieving goals related to more successful hiring practices, more cohesive internal teams, improved communication patterns and more. DISC Assessments (by TTI Success Insights®) are one of those powerful tools – designed to help you objectively assess and navigate individual behaviours and preferences in order to build the highest performing teams possible. What Are DISC Assessments? The DISC Assessment is an inventory … Read More

4 Practical Problem-Solving Techniques for Today’s Business Leaders

Business leadership success is dependent on your ability to identify problems, formulate solutions and communicate effectively with your team. However, we all know this can feel ‘easier said than done.’ By learning to implement these practical problem-solving techniques, you can become a more impactful (and more trusted) business leader. Step 1. Get an Accurate Diagnosis You can’t find a solution to a problem if you don’t (first) identify that there is an issue and (second) understand the details of that … Read More

Sales Tips: 5 Questions Your Sales Team Needs to Answer

To build a high-performing sales team, many business leaders search for the latest sales tips and techniques while overlooking their team’s foundational knowledge. The most effective salespeople are proactive in learning as much as they can about their company, its products/services and its customers, but imagine the impact if your entire sales staff was armed with that knowledge. Sales Question #1 – What Are We Selling? Talk about the impact your products or services can have. Instead of simply knowing … Read More

Define Your Competitive Advantage: How Do You Line Up?

Many business leaders spend a good deal of time and resources trying to create an impactful marketing strategy and/or winning sales strategy – only to find that it doesn’t translate into increased conversions. Often times, it’s because an integral step was missed: defining the company’s competitive advantage. The truth of the matter is that customers don’t think like we do about our business. They don’t care about your products or services; they care about the solutions you provide. There’s a … Read More

How to Hire Productive Employees with the Law of Three

A well-established team of productive employees is, without a doubt, your organization’s most valuable asset. So, when you’re hiring new employees, it’s essential to choose candidates who will be able to thrive both in their individual position and as a part of the team. However, learning to identify those candidates can be incredibly challenging – especially since it’s human nature to be influenced by unconscious emotional responses. Swift and positive assessments of a candidate can be deceiving (much more so … Read More

Basic Business Analysis: 5 Questions Every CEO Should Be Asking (regularly)

We’ve all read news stories about once thriving businesses that are now in danger of closing their doors, and many of us have wondered how that happens. While it is possible that some unforeseen circumstance caused the downfall, it’s more common to find that the leadership lost touch with the business operations, shifting customer needs or emerging trends. In other words, they failed to conduct a regular business analysis. Just like your annual check-up with your doctor, your company’s health … Read More

3 Sales Mistakes That Are Hurting Your Business

For how long could you sustain your business without making sales? If you’re like most business owners, the answer is not very. Fundamentally, your business depends on your team’s ability to close sales – because, without that revenue, you simply can’t keep your doors open. So, it’s incredibly important to focus on your sales processes and be sure you aren’t allowing sales mistakes to stand in the way of your continued success. If your sales efforts aren’t living up to … Read More

Business Communication Techniques to Increase Your Effectiveness

Think about the leaders you admire most. What is it that makes them stand out from the crowd? Is it the way they motivate others? Their ability to get things done? Their authenticity or their vision? All too often, people attribute these characteristics to charisma – you either have it or you don’t – but that’s not actually the case. In fact, these are simply examples of the results you can achieve when you learn to leverage effective business communication … Read More

Get Motivated: Goals, Obstacles & Creative Thinking

The most effective business leaders embrace curiosity, adaptability and vision – qualities that rely on creativity. So, it’s not surprising that there’s a close correlation between business success, innovation and creative thinking. Business leaders who nurture creativity as a key leadership skill are more likely to embrace potential over problems and opportunity over opposition. In other words, creative thinking arms you with all the reasons to act, while freeing you from the self-imposed and unwarranted limitations that often take root … Read More

Getting Results: The Qualities of Effective Mentoring Relationships

Many of us can attribute at least some of our current levels of success to a colleague, manager, teacher or friend who took the time to help us along the way. That’s because mentoring works. In fact, Terri A. Scandura, a leadership expert and former dean of the University of Miami’s MBA program, says that up to 71% of Fortune 500 companies have mentoring programs. Owners and executives who implement these types of programs and encourage constructive mentoring relationships see … Read More

6 Steps for Increasing Productivity with Effective Feedback

What’s your process for providing effective feedback to your employees? As a business owner, executive and/or manager, your leadership sets the tone and the standards within your organization. The way in which you manage and communicate with your employees could stifle creativity and motivation or it could unlock each team members’ greatest potential. That’s why it’s so important to prioritize leadership development training. In this post, we’ll explore six practical steps for improving one of the most integral elements of … Read More

5 Leadership Tips to Improve Internal Communications

All business owners and executives want to build a highly engaged workforce of efficient, energized and loyal employees, but that’s easier said than done. While many leaders search for quick fixes, we understand that the key to unlocking increased productivity and a thriving team-oriented culture is more time-honored than trendy – the key is to improve your internal communications. If you’re concerned because communication isn’t your strongest-suit, you’re not alone. Communication skills are learned. Just like sales techniques or time … Read More

Could Zero-Based Thinking Increase Your Profits?

  Have you ever found yourself questioning why every department seems to perform routine tasks a little (or a lot) differently? Often times, processes are developed out of necessity instead of being crafted strategically. The result is a patchwork of systems, processes, and policies that are inconsistent and inefficient. Instead of accepting a stagnant mentality of ‘this is the way things are done,’ an increasing number of executives are leveraging Zero-Based Thinking – a powerful business leadership tool that encourages … Read More

3 Proven Sales Techniques for Overcoming Objections

For many salespeople, one of the most challenging stages of the sales cycle is handling objections. After all, objections can easily feel like rejection, and it can be uncomfortable to talk people out of saying no. However, here’s the big secret: objections are actually good! In this post, we’ll explore three proven sales techniques to help you overcome objections and transform them into a powerful asset. Understanding Objections First and foremost, objections aren’t a “no.” On the contrary, questions and … Read More

Be A More Successful Entrepreneur This Year | Business Leadership Tips

The new year is here – bringing with it a renewed sense of excitement and opportunity. Across the globe, owners and entrepreneurs are looking for business leadership tips that will help to drive more success, including more profits, more work/life balance and a more engaged team. At FocalPoint Canada, we like to maximize this period of universal motivation by sitting with our clients to map out individualized plans for the year ahead. However, for entrepreneurs who have yet to start … Read More

New Year’s Resolutions vs Goal Planning | How to Write Resolutions That Work

Are you stuck in the cycle of writing New Year’s Resolutions that get put on a shelf by the time February arrives? Are you hoping 2019 will be the year when everything starts coming together? Instead of falling into the same old trap of writing ineffective New Year’s Resolutions, start the year off right by implementing The Guaranteed Success Formula – an incredibly powerful goal planning technique. Using Goal Planning to Write Effective Resolutions First things first. To write effective … Read More

The ABCDE Method – Time Management Strategies for Success

Do you often find yourself completing every task on your To-Do list and aimlessly wandering around the office? Of course not. Whether you’re a business owner, executive or junior-level manager, it’s more common for today’s professionals to feel as though there simply aren’t enough hours in the day. By learning effective time management strategies, you can optimize your productivity – driving greater business success and increasing your overall happiness. The ABCDE Method refers to the five ways of allocating your … Read More

Leadership Tips: How to be an Effective Manager During the Holidays

  Being an effective leader is a year-round challenge, but it’s increasingly challenging during the busy holiday season. Everyone’s attention is being pulled in many different directions – both professionally and personally – and it can be easy to get overwhelmed. These 5 Leadership Tips for the Holiday Season are designed to help you keep your team engaged while solidifying yourself as a reliable and motivated business leader. #1 – Be Realistic with Expectations Of course, the wheels of productivity … Read More

Strategic Planning 101: Conquer the 5 Most Common Mistakes

Strategic planning is a buzzword that’s been tossed around boardrooms and executive circles for years – leaving many business leaders feeling as though they are chasing the elusive strategic planning ROI. Just like with leadership development or sales techniques, effective strategic planning is a learned skill. At FocalPoint Canada, we help our clients navigate their business goals by working with them to develop roadmaps for success – aka strategic plans. To help you start thinking strategically about strategic planning, we’ve … Read More

Crisis Leadership: How to Be Effective in a Worst-Case Scenario

There are two dominant qualities shared by most successful CEOs. First, they are highly skilled at bringing together teams talented people and organizing them to achieve maximum results. Second, they are able to function well in a high-stress scenario and provide reliable crisis leadership. Few business leaders naturally have these skills, and all executives can benefit from programs designed to develop strategic leadership and coaching-style skills. To help you on your journey towards improving your crisis leadership competence, we’ve compiled … Read More

The 7 Ps of Marketing Strategy Optimization

In a world where technologies, markets and customer preferences are constantly evolving, the most successful companies are taking an agile approach to marketing. A marketing strategy isn’t a static document, but an ever-changing roadmap for effectively connecting with customers and prospects in authentic ways. As a business leader, it’s your responsibility to ensure your team is continually reevaluating and reformulating your marketing strategy. Originally developed by Brian Tracy, the “Seven P Formula” helps you assess the key aspects of your … Read More

Essential Employee Engagement Techniques for New Hires

Employee engagement is a topic that has taken center stage for today’s business leaders – partially because of its link with productivity optimization but also because low engagement levels have become an epidemic in the workplace. According to Gallup’s 2017 State of the American Workplace report, only one-third of the American workforce is engaged – meaning only 33% of workers are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and their employer.  This leaves 51% who are not engaged and 16% who are actively disengaged – meaning … Read More

5 Steps to Improve Your Listening Skills & Leadership Effectiveness

It’s not an accident that the most successful leaders are also very skilled listeners. That’s because communication – both how you deliver information and how you receive it – is the key to leadership effectiveness. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, executive or management hopeful, your listening skills play a critical role in your ability to become an influential leader, persuasive closer and impactful visionary. Here are 5 simple steps for improving your listening skills and, in turn, your leadership effectiveness. 1. … Read More

Your Most Valuable Financial Asset for Entrepreneurial Success

When asked about your most valuable financial assets, it’s common to consider the worth of your business, real estate properties and investment portfolio. However, you would be overlooking the most crucial asset for entrepreneurial success: your earning ability. As Brian Tracy says, “your ability to earn money is the most precious and perishable asset you have.” That’s because if you were to lose all the financial assets you originally considered (property, cars, bank accounts, etc.), your earning ability would allow … Read More

7 Essential Principles for Achieving Maximum Success

Why are some businesses more successful than others? It’s a question we’ve all considered at one time or another – especially if we look around and feel as though other professionals have identified some secret key for achieving maximum success. The truth is that we’ve all felt this way. In our intensely connected world, conflicting advice can be found around every corner. So, developing strategies that drive success begins with sorting through the “noise” and focusing your attention on these … Read More

Goal Setting Made Simple: 7 Steps for Success

Do you have goals or simply a destination? There’s a big difference. See, many business owners and executives believe they have goals when they actually have what’s better described as a “destination” – or a loosely defined point at which they’ll feel they’ve achieved success. Actual goal setting involves both qualitative and quantitative components. Qualitative definitions get you started by identifying the feelings or circumstances you want to realize (aka the destination). A common example of this would be the … Read More

Managing VS Coaching: The Key to Engagement is Superior Coaching Skills

When asked what’s more powerful – managing employees or coaching them – most business leaders are correct in responding with “coaching.” Many will add that they have adopted a coaching leadership style, but when asked to elaborate, it’s more common to discover that their coaching skills offer significant room for growth (to put it nicely). The truth is that most managers don’t know how to coach their employees, despite their desire to do so. However, the good news is that … Read More

The 7 Key Sales Skills Your Sales Team Needs to Master

Businesses are operating in the most competitive market we’ve ever known. Consumers are inundated with sales messages at home, online, and at the office. So, it’s more important than ever to hone your team’s sales skills. However, as many as 70% of companies don’t conduct any sales trainings – leaving the remaining 30% to dominate the market. Where does your company fall in that equation? When developing a highly skilled sales team, it’s important to start with a full understanding … Read More

6 Steps for Doubling Your Income & Time Off | Time Management

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The key for making more money while claiming more time off is learning essential time management skills. Think about how you spend your day. Studies have shown that as much as 80% of an average workday is spent with activities that contribute very little to the employee’s greater performance goals. Even more shocking, as much as 50% of an average day is being wasted with socializing, personal calls or text messages, social media, and other personal business. Time management centers … Read More

The Grand Slam Formula: How to Increase Productivity & Maximize Your Time

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Every business owner or executive is faced with the challenge of succeeding professionally while thriving personally. For many, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to get it all done. The FocalPoint Process helps business leaders increase productivity through a wide range of tools and techniques. One of these is our Grand “SLAM” Formula. The goals of the Grand SLAM Formula are to provide insight into how you use your time and to implement strategies for maximizing that time. … Read More

Financial Assessments: 4 Financial Ratios Business Owners Need to Understand

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The financial health of your business is integral for accessing new funding, planning new initiatives and driving stable growth. Financial assessments help business owners understand what’s standing in the way of next-level growth by quantifying GAPS in current practices and future goals. This type of deep-dive begins with an exploration of the financial ratios that are most relevant to your operations. Financial ratios are commonly used by lenders and investors to measure stability, but they’re also a powerful tool for … Read More

The #1 Secret to Hiring Great Employees: Behavioural Assessments

For generations, job-related skills and experience served as the primary measure for assessing a candidate’s fit for a new job or promotion. Today, organizations across the globe are recognizing those measures as one small piece of the puzzle. Behavioural Assessments help you establish better hiring practices by evaluating the traits, temperament, and talents that are best-suited for the position and your organization. After all, you don’t just want to hire someone who can perform the required tasks; you want to … Read More

Productivity Optimization: 4 Ways to Get More Done – Starting Now!

It can feel like some people simply have a natural inclination to get more done in the day than others, but the truth is that productivity is all about time management – and time management is all about life management. Productivity optimization is an overarching term that includes a range of valuable strategies for increasing output, either on a personal level or on the larger business scale. In this post, we’ll explore four productivity optimization techniques you can begin implementing … Read More

3 Qualities Every Leader Should Develop through Leadership Development

There’s a difference between being a manager and a leader. While managers live in the trenches and monitor the day-to-day of their subordinates’ work, leaders focus more on vision, direction, and support. Both play an important role in the business world, but thriving organizations have leaders at the helm. Leadership development coaching and training helps business owners and top executives hone those skills and cultivate the qualities that drive success. Across all industries and business models, powerful leaders share three … Read More

Sales Effectiveness 101: 5 Steps to a Successful Sales Strategy

In order to remain viable, a business must be able to create and maintain customers in a cost-effective way. After all, it is your customers’ dollars that keep the doors open and the lights on. Your company’s sales effectiveness relies on experienced leadership, a well-trained sales team, and a successful sales strategy. The goal of a sales strategy is to build your customer base and transition prospects into paying customers. Whether you’re launching a new product line or assessing your … Read More

The Top 5 Benefits of Entrepreneurial Development

As an entrepreneur, you’ve accepted the challenge of establishing and growing your business from the ground up. Depending on where you are in the business life cycle, it’s likely that your role is constantly evolving – leaving you with a delicate balancing act between the perspectives of the technician, the manager, and the entrepreneur (a concept developed by Michael Gerber in his best-selling business book The E-Myth Revisited). Embracing entrepreneurial development not only helps you understand your role in your … Read More

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