Pairing Wine with Business

Considering the business of judging excellence

By: Connie Laughlin

I want my wine selections and my business tactics tested because no one likes unpleasant surprises. My time and money are precious, so I want less risk without any sour grapes. Why not enjoy a more predictable and satisfying experience in life?

Judging wine
When choosing wine, I seek advice from an oenophile (a lover or connoisseur of wine) to select a good bottle to pair with a particular meal or to have on hand for guests. And it’s useful to know which ones have achieved awards for their excellence. I will definitely go back to a restaurant if I know their Cabernet Sauvignon is dependable.

Because of wine competitions, wine quality has improved in many countries around the world. Trained experts not only critique wines organoleptically (involving the use of sense organs); many competitions additionally judge by chemical analysis. These combined tests offer the most effective results.

The experts at the International Wine and Spirit Competition state on their website, “a red wine with high-volatile acid and some residual sugar could taste quite attractive (a sweet-and-sour effect). Over the months, this level of volatile acid would rise, creating an overly sour and unattractive wine. Deduction of marks following technical analysis could affect the level of an award.” It might be OK today, albeit a risky option and not worthy of my consideration.

Per Wikipedia, “investing in wine can be accomplished with two main methods: purchasing and reselling individual bottles or cases of particular wines, or purchasing shares in an investment wine fund that pools investors’ capital. In the first instance (of directly buying specific cases of wine), it is usually recommended that an inexperienced buyer work with a broker, merchant or consultant to minimize risk due to lack of knowledge. Indeed, complex models and formulae have been applied to tracking investment wines’ historical returns.”

Every business owner lacks certain skill sets, whether it’s investing in wine or any other business venture. As such, you must rely on experienced, highly certified, and trusted consultants.

Judging business
Is your business running sweetly, humming along without any claims or judgments? Just as wine with a high-volatile acid and residual sugar would eventually cause an adverse reaction – what’s lurking in your business setting you up for future adversity?

To effectively manage the HR (all things having to do with personnel) facets of one’s business costs a lot because you truly need the highly trained and certified pros. However, that’s not the case if you capsulate your management needs within the realm of expertise of one strategic partner: the professional employer organization (PEO). The PEO industry provides all of that.

Owners may think they know what they’re doing in business, but more than likely, they aren’t up to speed on how to manage specific risks and if they’re in compliance. They need professional assistance!

No matter if you have two or 200 employees, every business needs to know their workforce costs are predictable, adhere to employment laws and have HR professionals putting things in place for their business, including detailed employee handbooks, HR training and procedures. Every business needs seasoned certified professionals in human resources (CPHRs) to guide them through the hiring, disciplinary and termination processes. Proper safety training and risk management tools are a necessity!

One more pro you need to add to your payroll: If you don’t have hundreds of employees, it really doesn’t make economic sense to have high-dollar pros on payroll, so outsourcing via the PEO arrangement is definitely the way to go.

Businesses must do their best to control loss. While most business owners greatly care about the safety of their employees and are concerned about any loss, they aren’t professionally educated in loss management such as employee litigation, tricky workers’ compensation claims, drug abuse, unemployment claims and the list goes on. Loss control and HR management initiatives must be budgeted for in every organization.

A bad bottle of wine might damper an evening, but bad business could ruin everything.

Note: Sources are available upon request.

Connie Laughlin is a business consultant for UniqueHR. For more information on outsourcing HR, payroll, workers’ compensation insurance, safety training or benefits, contact her at 361-852-6392 or

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