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nectarineStudies show that people in the working world approach the “lunch break” in a variety of ways. The realities of a lunch break include: eating lunch in the company’s lunch room, going out to lunch regularly with a few of your closest coworkers, eating lunch at your desk, or even not taking a lunch break at all. Read on for stats and findings about lunchtime options.

 

Fueling Your Brain

Part of the reason lunch can boost your performance at work is that food literally fuels your brain, which needs a constant supply of energy to function optimally. Stopping to take a break and eat can make you much better at what you do. Taking a break from that steady stream of emails helps reduce stress and, in turn, can help keep you healthier. The Washington Post found that fewer than 20 percent of American workers regularly step away for a midday meal, and 39 percent usually eat at their desks. This also connects with the assumption that the most dedicated workers are constantly available and on task and that taking a lunch break is counterproductive.

USA Today mentioned that everyone is simply just busier all the way around. Everybody’s trying to be more productive.

 

Social Interaction

Going out to lunch with your coworkers and engaging in conversation over lunch can help advance your career, as social bonds can be formed over a relaxed meal. According to data collected using the time-tracking and productivity app DeskTime, the most productive 10 percent of its users were those who took regular breaks that lasted about 17 minutes each.

 

Cost-Effectiveness

Another part of the lunch hour is the cost-effectiveness of your choice. According to a survey by Accounting Principals, two thirds (66 percent) of working Americans buy their lunch instead of packing it, costing them an average of $37 per week — nearly $2,000 a year. In addition to that, 50 percent of the American workforce spends approximately $1000 a year on coffee, or a weekly coffee habit of more than $20.

Additionally, a statistic from CareerBuilder, an employment consultant, found that less than one-fifth of executives surveyed; ate lunch at a sit-down restaurant, about 40% take a brown-bag lunch and 17% eat fast food.

 

Is there really no “lunch hour?”

The American workday is now loosely defined, depending on personal work demands. Parade Magazine shows that some people might be having lunch at 10:30 am or as late as 2:30 pm.

 

Making the Most of Your Break

CNN says that how we handle our breaks — especially lunch — has a huge impact on how we feel for the rest of the day. It is about using our energy wisely and replenishing that energy so that we have a rhythm to life. We know that our digestion needs time to do its thing properly. We know that our bodies need down time in the middle of stressful situations to recoup energy and be able to refocus. We also know that many people fought for the right to be able to take breaks that we sometimes give away without really thinking of the consequences.

CNN recommends these positive lunch break habits:

  • Take a walk
  • Getting out into the daylight
  • Talking to friends
  • Eating a healthy lunch or snack
  • Doing some stretching exercises
  • Playing a quick, mentally-challenging game

How will you make the most of your lunch break?

 

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thanksgiving_1200x1200Happy Thanksgiving from Prime! With the upcoming days full of turkey, mashed potatoes, family and friends, we hope you have a fun, relaxing holiday weekend! Whether it’s the 4th of July, Christmas or Thanksgiving, no holiday is complete without a tradition.

The Prime team shared a few of our favorite Thanksgiving traditions – you’ll get a kick out of some of the awesome things our staff and their families do! How will you be celebrating this weekend? Let us know in the comments!

Julie: “When my husband and I first got married (almost 30 years ago!) and our parents lived over an hour apart, we asked my in-laws if it was alright to have Thanksgiving on that side on Saturday so that we could enjoy both families without having to drive and eat two meals in one day. That tradition still holds today. About 7 years ago, my mom asked if someone else could host as it was too stressful for her, so I’ve been having it for my family at my house ever since. And with the passing of my in-laws, each kid takes turns hosting it at their house on Saturdays. Some years, I host two Thanksgivings for anywhere from 15 – 30 people each!”

Shauna: “It’s a new tradition but we celebrate Thanksgiving at the lake and go to a Holiday Lighted Horse Parade the next evening – my kids love it!”

Taylor: “Get a food coma, watch football and scope out the Black Friday ads.”

Greg: “We have a crazy tradition of an annual weigh in/weigh out. No one really wants to win the traveling trophy, but the ‘golden scale’ is awarded to the family member who gains the most weight Thanksgiving Day!”

Sara: Every Thanksgiving, my husband and I watch Home for the Holidays, a 1995 movie with Holly Hunter, Robert Downey, Jr., and Anne Bancroft. It’s about family – the family we’re born to and the family we create – and expectations and the transience of time and memory. It’s funny and honest and raw, and no matter how many times I watch it, I always cry at the end.”

Suzanne: “For my family on Thanksgiving day, family, extended family, and friends gather around a rather traditional Thanksgiving table at my parents’ house in Stevens Point, WI. However, what is standing in the corner is unique to our crazy clan. Over 20 years ago, as our family grew and grandkids entered into the picture, and since many families had to be taken into consideration for the holidays, my Mom invented THANKSGIVEMAS complete with a Turkey Bush! On Thanksgiving we have a traditional meal but once all the pie has been eaten and dishes are all done, Grampy Laude has the grandkids watch a short movie while he carefully turns the Turkey Bush into a beautifully decorated Christmas tree! From that point on, it becomes Christmas with presents and all the trimmings for all that are there to celebrate. Celebrating both holidays over Thanksgiving weekend has allowed Grammy and Grampy to have their kids and grandkids around them but also allows individual families to have their own traditions on Christmas and New Year.”

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11.16.16

Prime Team

17191_prime_crossdrive2016_1200x1200The holiday season is one of joy, one of giving. Please join with Prime Advertising again this year to make this a season of giving back.

We believe that it’s important for local businesses and individuals to give back to their communities. For the last ten years, Prime has partnered with CROSS Services to host a drive for food, toys, personal hygiene items, and household goods for area families in need. Located in Rogers, CROSS is a non-profit organization serving families and individuals in Rogers, Maple Grove, Osseo, Champlin (West), Corcoran, and Dayton. Services include a food shelf, clothing and household supplies at very low cost, Meals on Wheels, items for holidays and special occasions, and more.

It may be difficult to fathom how many families in our very own communities are in need during the holidays and throughout the year. It is estimated that one in 10 households in Minnesota is affected by hunger. According to Hunger Solutions Minnesota, in 2015, Minnesotans made 3,281,389 visits to food shelves, the fifth consecutive year of visits topping the three million mark.

CROSS is there to help. Each month, hundreds of individuals receive assistance from CROSS during their time of need. To do this, CROSS relies on community support from individuals and businesses.We need your help.
Please consider supporting CROSS during our annual holiday Toy and Food Drive. We are accepting donations at the Prime office now until Thursday, December 15.

Currently CROSS is in need of the following food items:
  • Meat, fish, and protein – canned tuna, ham, or chicken, beef stew, chili, peanut butter, canned/dried beans
  • Fruits and Vegetables – 100% fruit juice, canned fruits and vegetables, boxed potatoes
  • Complete Meals – pasta and sauce, boxed meals, hearty soups
  • Baking/Condiments – flour, sugar, oil, syrup, gravy, ketchup, pancake mix
  • Grains – cereal, rice, oatmeal
  • Holiday items – turkey, ham, whole chicken; canned yams; canned fruits; boxed potatoes, rice, pasta; stuffing, gravy
Cleaning and personal care items are also needed:
  • Toothpaste/Toothbrushes
  • Shampoo/Conditioner
  • Soap
  • Deodorant
  • Lotion/Lip Balm
  • Feminine Hygiene items
  • Razors/Shaving Cream
  • Diapers/Wipes
  • Toilet Paper/Facial Tissue/Paper Towels
  • Cleaner/Laundry Detergent/Dish Soap
Make the holidays a little brighter for local children and teens in need with donations of:
  • Gift Cards
  • DVDs
  • Earbuds
  • Books
  • Sports T-shirts
  • Hat & Gloves/Mittens
  • Hooded Sweatshirts
  • Games & Puzzles
  • Learning Toys

Building SetsEspecially needed are items for boy and for kids age 12 and up.

The CROSS Holiday Toy Shop at Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Maple Grove is for parents or guardians of children ages birth through 18 who need extra support during the holiday season. Parents or guardians can stop by CROSS to register for the Holiday Toy Shop, and can choose gifts for their children during the event on December 17. The Holiday Toy Shop serves more than 900 local children.

Create hope and bring joy to area families in need this year. Stop by the Prime office with your donations any time during our regular business hours Monday, November 21 through Thursday, December 15. We sincerely thank you for supporting CROSS Services and for making this a season of giving back.

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11.11.16

Prime Team

On this Veterans Day, we honor all who have served. Thank you.

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Tonight Daylight Saving Time ends! Clocks turn back an hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday, marking the beginning of standard time for the next few months. This means that this weekend will be an hour longer than normal, but it will get dark an hour earlier in the evenings.

Standard time will be used until March 12, 2017, when clocks will “spring” forward an hour again. So don’t forget to turn your clocks back one hour tonight before you go to bed.

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10.31.16

Prime Team

Happy Halloween from Everyone at Prime Advertising!!
Do you have plans to celebrate tonight or have you already celebrated?

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Breast Cancer Awareness monthOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Chances are, you know someone who is either dealing with breast cancer or has in the past. Breast cancer has touched the lives of many Prime Advertising & Design employees in one way or another. According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, one in eight women in the U.S. will face a breast cancer diagnosis in her lifetime. Breast cancer in men is considered rare, but 440 men die from it each year. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed form of cancer for women, and the second leading cause of death for women.

Every thirteen minutes, a woman dies of breast cancer.

That staggering number is one of the many reasons that Breast Cancer Awareness Month is so important. Each year during the month of October, numerous organizations and corporations offer educational opportunities and events to increase awareness of this deadly and prevalent disease. Resources and information are available to learn about genetic and environmental risk factors, prevention, treatment, and the importance of early detection. When detected early, the chances of surviving breast cancer are much greater.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month supporters are easily recognized by the color pink and pink ribbons. The White House was lit up pink on Thursday, October 21, and the I-35W Bridge in Minneapolis went pink for Breast Cancer Awareness on Monday, October 3. There are many events throughout the state to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research.

The NFL has teamed up with the American Cancer Association for A Crucial Catch Day, when underserved, grant-funded communities offer low- or no-cost breast cancer screenings. This year, A Crucial Catch falls on Tuesday, October 25, 2016. Since 2009, A Crucial Catch campaign has raised nearly $15 million for the American Cancer Society, the majority of which comes from the sale of NFL Pink merchandise. Each year, the Minnesota Vikings host a Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon and participate in other events around the Twin Cities to raise awareness.

The National Breast Cancer Foundation is offering a free ebook, What Every Woman Needs to Know, during the month of October, to educate and empower women to be proactive about their health. The book includes information and resources to create a breast health plan and to prepare for a screening appointment.

We encourage you to take time to learn more about breast cancer prevention and detection.

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4th Quarter PlaybookThe NCAA and NFL football season is in full swing, and games this fall have provided plenty of great action, including some awesome 4th quarter comebacks. It’s fun to watch teams in the 4th quarter either try and defend a lead, or on the other side of the ball, scramble to make the right plays to win the game. And really, this is no different than what businesses are doing at this time of year.

For many, 2016 has been a good business year, and the final quarter of the year provides three months to go from good to great. For others however, the final quarter might be their last chance to turn a profit and arrive at a place where they are able to call this year a ‘win’ for their business.

So what’s in your 4th quarter playbook? Like great football coaches with the game on the line, business owners need to make good decisions when their year is on the line.

Here are some key considerations for a good 4th quarter playbook:

  • Stay The Course. Many coaches in post-game press conferences talk about ‘staying the course’. In other words, if things are going well, there is no need to make drastic changes. Making small tweaks to the playbook can improve performance, but if something was successful during the first three quarters, it’s likely to provide the outcome you are looking for.
  • Listen. Listening to players – and employees – can be another driver of success. Quarterbacks are often seen talking to head coaches and offensive coordinators about what they see on the field. Similarly, good businesses are constantly engaging employees for feedback.
  • Finish Hard. When teams get a comfortable lead, coaches often talk about ‘putting the game out of reach’ or ‘finishing off a team’. When things are going well, that is not the time to put it on auto-pilot and expect to cruise through the 4th quarter. When things are going well it’s a great time to capitalize on the moment and take the score – and sales for a business – to a point where the competition can’t catch you.
  • Play to win. If 2016 hasn’t been the year you were expecting, there is one quarter left to make it a win. Start the 4th quarter with the energy and strategy needed to change the course of the year. Just like some of the great football games that we have seen over the past month, if you work hard at every opportunity, things can change for the better very quickly.

    The best coaches and the most successful business owners have a great playbook, and one that has gotten them through the first three quarters and positions them well for the final stretch. Good luck in the 4th quarter of 2016!

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hall-of-fame-blog-as_instagramAlicia Sinclair is the Assistant Sales Manager here at Prime Advertising & Design. She is also consistently the top salesperson on the staff, which won’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows her. Alicia possesses all of the characteristics of a high performer: goal-oriented, driven, determined, competitive, confident, respectful, disciplined, and best of all, full of personality.
Alicia’s success in business didn’t just happen overnight, however. In fact, you can probably trace her accomplishments back to when she was four years old. That is when she started a gymnastics career that ultimately resulted in her placing 18 times at the Minnesota High School State Championships and winning two individual state titles in 1993 and 1994. Most recently, she was recognized for her record career by being inducted into the Channel 12 Sports Hall of Fame.
Research done by Ernst & Young suggests that 94% of women today in executive-level positions played sports, and nearly half played at a university level. An injury was the only reason Alicia wasn’t able to advance her gymnastics career at the collegiate level.
There is little doubt of the direct correlation between participation in sports and success in the business world. For women in particular, Claire Shipman, television journalist and co-author of The Confidence Code states:

“Something happens when girls play sports — they embody the experience of not just of winning, but the critical experience of losing. It’s that process of carrying on and clearing hurdles that really builds confidence. It’s an incredibly useful proving ground for business and leadership.”
Anyone who knows Alicia would agree that she is a great example of what embodies success, and would join our entire Prime team in congratulating her on her well-deserved Hall of Fame honor!

You can watch Alicia’s Hall of Fame TV segment below or watch the full here. 

 

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office-hours-localsearchAs William Shakespeare once said, “Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.”

The kids are heading back to school, the air is beginning to cool and we are almost finished with summer’s rule. With fall before us and winter ahead, Prime is holding onto the warmth and sunshine by extending our summer hours throughout the year!

We experimented over the past several months, allowing staff to work earlier and later than traditional office hours in order to start their weekend at 11:30 every Friday. We found that productivity increased as staff got a head start on their day before the phones started ringing in the morning, and were also able to wrap up loose ends after 5:00 when email traffic slows down.

The result of our experiment is that the Prime staff will have the option to start carving fresh powder on the slopes or to start relaxing on the beach a little earlier each and every Friday year- ‘round!

Our official office hours will be 8:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday, and 8:00 am – 11:30 am on Fridays.

As Prime transitions into the fourth quarter of 2016 and looks ahead to 2017, we are excited to roll up our sleeves and continue scoring touchdowns for our clients. With long weekends to recharge our batteries and enjoy life with family and friends, our team is fully equipped to spark your business with an extra jolt of inspiration during the week!

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