The SOTA was started by Mary Ellen and Hugh Murray, a recently retired married couple, that because of health issues has to stay close to home.
Mary Ellen's vision issues forced her to give up her university professorship.
Hugh's heart issues forced him to sell his business after 25 years at the helm and spend an hour each day at the gym.
However, Mary Ellen and Hugh have lots of knowledge and practical experience that they felt might help other organization. Thus was born the idea for SOTA. They thought "why not provide cost effective advisory services through such things as Skype, GoToMeeting, e-mail, texting, and the plain old telephone."
The Small Organization Telephone Advisors (SOTA) seeks to provide a cost effective way for the managers of small organizations, both "for profit" and "not for profit", to obtain thoughtful informed advice in the following areas: personal management, organization, accounting, computer systems, procedures, marketing plans, regulatory interactions, training, etc. The SOTA offers its services to its clients using the tools of modern communication.
The SOTA was founded in 2013 by a retired married couple who felt they had considerable knowledge and decades of experience that might prove useful to smaller organizations that were not in a position to hire full time consultants. A summary bio of this husband and wife team follows:
Mary Ellen Grohar Murray taught for four decades in the nursing school at St. Louis University. Among other areas of expertise she taught courses in organization and management for undergraduate and master level students. In addition, she co-authored a text book on Leadership and Management which is widely used in nursing schools across America. Her education includes a masters in Nursing from Washington University in St Louis and a PhD in Sociology from St Louis University.
Mary Ellen has dealt with hundreds of young adults and middle aged people in stress filled environments. She has experience working with people face to face but also using internet based distance learning tools.
Hugh V. Murray ran a small broker dealer in St. Louis for twenty five years. Prior to that he was a registered stockbroker for ten years and before that he worked for ten years doing information systems work (procedures, forms design, computer systems design, etc.). Hugh's education consists of a BS in Engineering from Missouri S & T Univ. and an MBA from the Univ. of Pennsylvania.
In his capacity as the President of a small brokerage firm, Hugh handled many areas: monthly accounting, interaction with regulators, vendors relations, supervised ten to twenty employees, did the hiring and firing, prepared regulatory filings, devised marketing plans, made facilities decisions, organized computer systems, wrote market letters, etc.
The Small Organization Telephone Advisers (SOTA) is not in a position to be all things to all organizations; however, in certain areas the SOTA would likely be useful:
. A) In the Personal Area SOTA can offer advice the following: 1) Difficult people or dysfunctional working groups can cause havoc and need to be addressed. 2) An Standard Operational Procedure (SOP) should be prepared for each repetative task, and these SOP should be kept up to date. 3) Hiring and firing can be very stressful and needs to handled in compliance with the law and with careful consideration of the organization's current and future needs. and 4) changes to the organizational chart sometimes have to be made but such changes has to be handled carefully.
. B) In the Accounting Area SOTA can offer the following: 1) help making the chart of accounts more useful providing management information, 2) designing accounting reports in formats appropriate for regulators and bankers, 3) choosing software that is appropriate for the organization in question.
. C) In the area of computer systems SOTA offers the following: 1) determine the correct frequency for upgrading hardware and software, 2) investigate and evaluate web based and cloud based solutions that are needed but seem too costly, 3) evaluate pros and cons of systems integration ideas, 4) advise about keeping computer applications and networks simple enough for employees to understand.
. D) In the area of regulatory compliance: 1) advise employees on the proper attitude when interacting with regulators, 2) work with management to determine that the organization's copies of regulations are complete and current, 3) inquire when and how employees are being kept up to date on regulations.
. E) In the area of marketing the SOTA can help by: 1) reviewing existing marketing plans and ask informed questions about alternative, 2) set out additional or alternative marketing approaches.
The Cost of Using SOTA's Services
SOTA is not a fit for every small organization that might need some advisory services. Accordingly SOTA has decided to charge a nominal $10 per hour fee for the first ten hours of advisory services. If the organization and SOTA are inclined to continue the relationship after the ten hours, the parties will arrange a mutually acceptable charge for the services the organization wants. It is anticipated that "on going" charges will be in the $25 to $35 per hour range since no on site activity or travel is envisioned. There would also be the possibility of negotiating a lump sum payment for some specific, defined task.
For Mail: 8674 Eulalie; St Louis, Missouri 63144
By Phone: (314) 962-2187
By e-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ....(Please mention "SOTA" in the Subject line)