PDQ Machines – What are they?
Quite simply put, a PDQ machine (also more commonly known as a card machine) allows businesses to take payments quickly and easily from its customers. In todays’ world more and more shoppers are carrying less cash and more plastic meaning that the demand for merchants to accept card payments is at an all-time high.
It was only a decade ago believe it or not that retail transactions with cards were seen as tedious, with signatures being required and the back & forth of receipt signing. Todays’ machines however can process payments in seconds and this is convenient for both shoppers and merchants alike.
Just what is a PDQ Machine though?
PDQ stands for ‘Process Data Quickly’ – it’s fundamentally just a machine that accepts our credit cards and bank cards – the chances are you’ve probably used one in the last week.
Most people in the modern world today won’t wait around for their transactions to complete and that’s why the demand and evolution of the PDQ machine was an absolutely pivotal one.
PDQ machines approve payments quickly and securely by reading the information relayed to it from a chip embedded in the card and importantly, can work both in person or indeed over the phone by disclosing your card information and manually inputting this into the machine.
Just how to does it work?
PDQ machines can vary somewhat from device to device and some may have slightly different features, but the foundation of the machine works as follows:
1 – the chip and pin – customer enters their debit or credit card into the machine and inputs their pin
2 – An authorisation is requested – the machine triggers a request for payment approval from whoever the customers’ issuer is (I.E HSBC, Lloyds etc)
3 – Authorisation is granted or denied – Once the terminal gets the all clear the credit processor (someone like WorldPay for example) would then begin moving funds
4 – Fund are transferred – money received.
Here’s a visual of that process:
How much do PDQ Machines cost?
The average PDQ machine price varies and is typically based on your monthly sales and individual requirements – but typically from £30 – £300.
However, as well as the initial cost for the PDQ machine itself, there are other ongoing costs that you can expect when taking payments – these include:
- Till roll (for receipts)
- Monthly fees (not all payment processors will do this)
- Transaction fees
Entirely dependent on your cashflow and circumstances, some small businesses opt to rent / hire PDQ machines instead of just buying them outright. This could be a better option for you in the long term if you don’t want to part with lump sums at the beginning.
Customers today thrive on convenience and the expectation for small businesses (and large businesses alike) to offer simple, swift payment solutions is extraordinarily high. Businesses need to go the extra mile to ensure that they keep customers happy and that the purchase experience is a positive one.
Not taking a variety of payment methods leaves you vulnerable to losing out on custom which is why a PDQ machine is becoming almost essential in all retail environments of today.
The Ultimate Guide to the Essential Social Skills in Business
Effective communication and strong relationships are essential for success in the workplace. One factor that can greatly influence these qualities is emotional intelligence, often abbreviated as EQ. EQ refers to the ability to identify, understand, and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. Research has shown that individuals with high levels of EQ are better equipped to handle stress, communicate effectively, and work collaboratively with others (Chamorro-Premuzic & Sanger, 2016).
Research has consistently shown that emotional intelligence (EQ) is an important predictor of job performance and success in the workplace. EQ is comprised of a set of skills that allow individuals to recognize, understand, and regulate their own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. In addition, individuals with high EQ are better able to communicate effectively, build relationships, and navigate complex social situations. As a result, they are often viewed as effective leaders and collaborators, and are more likely to achieve their personal and professional goals.
In fact, a number of studies have demonstrated the significant impact that EQ has on job performance and success. For example, one study of 85 upper-level managers found that those with higher EQ scores were rated as more effective leaders by their subordinates (Law, Wong, & Song, 2004). Another study of 151 employees found that those with higher EQ were more likely to be promoted within their organization over a five-year period (Carmeli, Brueller, & Dutton, 2009). These findings highlight the importance of EQ in the workplace and suggest that developing these skills can lead to significant benefits for both individuals and organizations.
According to a study conducted by TalentSmart, a leading provider of EQ assessments, EQ is responsible for 58% of success in all job types (Bradberry & Greaves, 2009). In contrast, IQ only accounts for about 4% of success in the workplace. This suggests that EQ is a crucial skill set for individuals in any professional field. Fortunately, EQ is a skill that can be developed and honed over time with practice and awareness.
There are several key components of EQ that are particularly important for success in the workplace. These include:
Self-Regulation: This refers to your capacity to recognize and control your emotions. Sometimes treating them when they arise may be necessary. Understanding how to manage your anger is essential. However, it can also cover how to control the feelings you’ll experience.
Self-Awareness: This implies recognizing and understanding your own feelings. Do noisy places make you nervous? Do other people talking over you make you angry? Knowing these truths about yourself shows that you are working on your self-awareness. Being conscious of yourself is necessary for this phase, which can be more complex than it sounds.
Socialization: This category focuses on your capacity to manage social interactions and direct relationships. It doesn’t entail dominating others but knowing how to work with others to achieve your goals. This could entail presenting your ideas to coworkers, leading a team, or resolving a personal disagreement.
Motivation: Strong motivators include external forces like money, status, or suffering. Internal motivation, however, plays a significant role in Goleman’s concept. By doing so, you demonstrate your ability to control your cause and initiate or continue initiatives of your own volition rather than in response to external demands.
Empathy: It’s equally critical to be sensitive to others’ feelings. This may entail learning to identify different emotional states in individuals — for example, can you tell the difference between someone at ease and someone anxious? — but it also requires comprehension of how other people may react to their current situation. Empathy is one of the essential traits in business and business leadership.
A thought leader in this space, Michael Ventura has built a career advising organizations on the importance of emotional intelligence in the workplace. In his book, Applied Empathy, Ventura highlights the value of empathy in business and provides strategies for developing and applying this skill set. With two decades of experience as a leader, facilitator, and educator, Ventura’s work has made impact in with prestigious institutions such as Princeton University and the United Nations as well as corporate clients such as Google and Nike.
Through his work, Ventura advises leaders to focus on the development of EQ in order to help individuals improve their communication, collaboration, and leadership skills, ultimately leading to greater success in the workplace. Experts like Ventura continue to support the growing body of research on the value of EQ in business, and the evidence that organizations who invest in the EQ of their teams help to create a more empathetic and successful professional environment.
And it’s worth noting that EQ isn’t just important for individual success in the workplace, but also for overall organizational success. A study by the Center for Creative Leadership found that EQ was a better predictor of success than IQ or technical skills in the workplace, and that teams with higher levels of EQ tend to be more effective and productive (Boyatzis, Goleman, & Rhee, 1999). By cultivating a culture of empathy and emotional intelligence, organizations can improve their overall performance and create a more positive work environment for their employees.
In conclusion, emotional intelligence is a crucial component of success in the workplace, and individuals and organizations alike should prioritize the development of these skills. The ones that do not only develop a leading edge in their category, but also become a meaningful place to work for their teams. And in today’s rapidly changing talent landscape, the retention of highly capable, emotionally intelligent leaders is one of the greatest keys to unlocking success.
Boyatzis, R. E., Goleman, D., & Rhee, K. S. (1999). Clustering competence in emotional intelligence: Insights from the emotional competence inventory (ECI). In R. Bar-On & J. D. A. Parker (Eds.), Handbook of emotional intelligence (pp. 343-362). Jossey-Bass.
Bradberry, T., & Greaves, J. (2009). Emotional intelligence 2.0. TalentSmart.
Chamorro-Premuzic, T., & Sanger, M. N. (2016). Does employee happiness matter? Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, 3(2), 168-191.
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