6 Weird Things that Affect Your Relationship.

relationship imageRecently, research revealed that how much sleep you get (or don’t) majorly affects your bond with your guy. But a lack of shut-eye isn’t the only thing that can sabotage your love life. Here are six more weird factors-all backed up by scientific studies-that can totally eff with your relationship.

By Natasha Burton

1. Your Weight
Looking at nearly 200 newlywed couples, the University of Tennessee found that both men and women are more satisfied in their relationships when the woman’s BMI was lower than the man’s. While the study ruled out other factors like depression and income, which could have skewed the results, these findings are certainly not a reason to drop pounds. After all, the happiest relationships are those when both partners love and accept each other at any size, right?

2. Your Guy’s Parents
According to a study at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research, couples have a 20 percent higher chance of breaking up when a woman is BFF with her guy’s parents. So, if you’re not super close with your man’s mom… that might actually be a good thing.

3. Your Commute
Slogging through traffic morning and night seriously ups your stress levels-which in turn can totally affect your home life, according to research from Umeå University in Sweden. In fact, the risk of breaking up increases 40 percent if you have to commute to work every day.

4. Your Contraception
Taking the Pill helps prevent pregnancy-and maybe breakups as well. According to one study, women who were on the Pill when they met their partners are more likely to remain in their relationships than those who weren’t. The reason? Researchers concluded that those not on the Pill tend to judge potential boyfriends by more superficial qualities-like how good looking and good in bed they are-causing those relationships to end quicker.

5. Your Cell
Obviously, texting your mom while your guy’s trying to tell you about his day is beyond rude, but the University of Essex found that your smartphone can put a damper on your relationship even when you’re not using it. Couples who had heart-to-hearts with their cells nearby reported that they felt less trust in (and empathy from) their partners.

6. Your Dog
A U.K. study found that owning a pet might screw with your dating life. After surveying single men and women about how they’d feel dating someone with a furry friend, a whopping 28 percent said they’d never shack up with a dog owner. Lame sauce.

[yahoonews.com]

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The World in 2033: Big Thinkers And Futurists Share Their Thoughts

Put yourself back in 1993. Could you have
predicted the success of the web, tablets and
smartphones, privatized space travel, the rise of
terrorism, or the myriad of small changes that
impact how you live today? To do that going
forward and to predict our world in 2033, you need
the voices of the smartest minds on the planet to
spot trends in their areas of discipline and give us
insight into where we are heading. Interviewed,
and quoted directly for this piece are just such a
group of visionaries, leaders, and big thinkers like:
Ray Kurzweil on Technology
Robert Kaplan on Global Conflict
Khan Academy on Education
Virgin Galactic on Space Travel
Oliver Bussmann on The Global Workforce
John Allen on Religion
Dr. Gene Robinson on Global Climate, and
Bonus insights from an aspiring leader
Whether you just read your favorite author, research your area of interest, download the supplemental deck, or view them all together, you will see that these visionaries agree on two things: there will be change – sometime dramatic change –
in our future, and there is . . . hope.
On Technology: Ray Kurzweil
“20 years from now, biotechnology –
reprogramming biology as an information
process – will be in a mature phase. We will
routinely turn off genes that promote disease and
aging such as the fat insulin receptor gene that tells
the fat cells to hold onto excess fat. We will be
able to add genes that protect us from diseases
such as cancer and heart disease. Major killers
such as these will be under control. We will be
growing new organs from stem cells that are
created from our own skin cells. We will be able to
rejuvenate our organs in place by gradually
replacing aging cells that contain genetic errors and
short telomeres with cells containing our own DNA
but without errors and with extended telomeres.
Overall we will be adding more than a year every
year to your own remaining life expectancy, which
will represent a turning point in life extension.
We will be online all the time in virtual / augmented
reality. We won’t be looking at devices such as
tablets and phones. Rather, computer displays will
be fully integrated with real reality. Three-
dimensional pop ups in your visual field of view will
give background information about the people you
see, even a tip that someone just smiled at you
while you weren’t looking. The virtual display can
fully replace your real field of view putting you into
a totally convincing fully immersive virtual
environment. In these virtual environments, you
can be a different person with a different body for
each occasion. Your interactions with the realistic
virtual projections of other people will also be
completely convincing.
Search engines won’t wait for you to ask for
information. They will know you like a friend and
will be aware of your concerns and interests at a
detailed level. So it will pop up periodically and
offer something like “You’ve expressed concern
about Vitamin B12 getting into your cells, here’s
new research from four seconds ago that provides a
new approach to doing that.” You’ll be able to talk
things over with your computer, clarifying your
needs and requests just like you’re talking with a
human assistant.
Artificially intelligent entities will be operating at
human levels meaning they will have the same
ability to get the joke, to be funny, to be sexy, to be
romantic. However, the primary application of this
technology will be to improve our own ability to do
these things.”
Raymond “Ray” Kurzweil is an American author,
inventor, futurist, and director of engineering at
Google. For additional insights, go to
http://www.kurzweilai.net
On Global Conflict: Robert D. Kaplan
“In 2033, global conflict will be widespread and
chaotic, but not necessarily more violent. Rather
than the post-Ottoman state system in the Middle
East with hard borders and suffocating central
control, there will be a series of weak states and
sectarian and ethnic regions in tense relationships
with each other. For example, Mosul in Iraq will
have more in common with Damascus in Syria than
with Baghdad, even as Aleppo in Syria has more in
common with Baghdad in Iraq than with Damascus
itself. There will be an independent and
decentralized Kurdistan, a more feisty ethnic Azeri
region in northwestern Iran, even as Jordan and the
West Bank meld together.
In China there will be an ethnic-Han island in the
center and Pacific coast living in reasonable
harmony with virtually independent Inner Mongolia,
Muslim-Turkic Uighurstan, and Tibet. Chinese
Yunnan will be the capital of Southeast Asia. Africa
will have a green revolution, while at the same
time Nigeria pulverizes into several pieces.
In short, the next few decades will see the erosion
of central authority in the former colonial world,
which will be somewhat violent at first, before
settling down into a reasonable harmony.
Geography will be more crucial than ever, even as
technology makes the earth smaller and more
claustrophobic.”
Robert David Kaplan is an American journalist,
(currently a National Correspondent for The Atlantic
magazine), chief geopolitical analyst at Stratfor,
and author “The Revenge of Geography.” For
additional insights, go to http://www.RobertDKaplan.com.
On Education: Khan Academy
“Global Access: In twenty years, almost everyone
on the planet will have access to the world’s best
educational materials. Almost every subject will be
available for free online. A child in Mongolia would
be able to learn anything from Algebra to String
Theory to Greek History.
Personalized learning: Students won’t be forced to
learn in a “one-size-fits-all” model with everyone
the same age learning the same thing at once.
Rather, technology will allow the system to adjust
to every student’s needs. A 35-year old would
easily be able to brush up on Trigonometry. A 4th
grader would be able to learn Algebra. Everyone
will be able to focus on their own needs.
Interactive classrooms: Teachers will spend less
time lecturing, and much more time mentoring.
Classrooms will be highly engaging environments
with almost all time spent on valuable human
interactions (e.g., mentorship, peer tutoring) and
more hands-on, cross-disciplinary, project-based
learning.
Competency-based credentials: Students will be
able to prove what they know, not by seat-time, but
with competency-based credentials. An out-of-work
40 year old would not need to go back to school and
pile up thousands of dollars of debt before
employers took him seriously. Instead, he would be
able to take an accounting course online for free,
prove what he knows, and get a job.”
Shantanu Sinha is President and COO of Khan
Academy, a not-for-profit with the goal of changing
education for the better by providing a free world-
class education for anyone anywhere. For additional
insights, go to http://www.khanacademy.org.
On Space Travel: Virgin Galactic
“Over the next 20 years, I believe thousands, and
perhaps even millions, of private individuals will
travel to space. Since the dawn of the space age,
just over 500 men and women have been to outer
space. With only a few recent exceptions, these
men and women have all been government
employees, handpicked by space agencies such as
NASA and trained to an enormous degree. Their
missions are worthwhile and worthy of our
gratitude and admiration, but it is critical to realize
that for the overwhelming majority of us,
government space programs are not our ticket to
space. The challenge of sending individuals to
space is being taken up by private companies,
which have both tools and motives those
government agencies may not have. Recently,
several entrepreneurs have started new businesses
expressly designed to tackle this problem.
Such future space travel won’t be enjoyed only by
adventurers. As we progress through the
21st century, spaceflight may become nearly as
common for travelers as taking a plane trip became
for millions across the world during the 20th. The
technology that permits flights into space will also
allow passengers to fly to far-flung places on Earth
in record time. By traveling out of the Earth’s
atmosphere for a small amount of time, a non-stop
trip from New York to Sydney might take two to
three hours instead of the 20-hour, multi-leg trip
required today. Furthermore, I believe air travel will
be more environmentally friendly. Airlines ferrying
passengers on regional routes will run small, short-
hop planes on battery cells.
Now is a fascinating time for the commercial space
industry. It is inspiring to see business leaders from
different sectors applying their best ideas and
practices to the unique challenges of spaceflight.
The next 20 years hold exciting, unexplored
territory for the people of the world.”
George Whitesides is President and CEO of Virgin
Galactic with plans to provide sub-orbital
spaceflights to space tourists, suborbital launches
for space science missions and orbital launches of
small satellites. For additional insights, go to
http://www.VirginGalactic.com.
On The Global Workforce: Oliver Bussmann
“Over the past 20 years we have gone from the
early stages of Internet to a fully connected world.
By 2033, a “born-mobile” workforce will be
constantly connected to both work and home life,
using devices that are wearable – or even
implantable. Collaboration with others around the
world will be as natural as speaking, and physical
workspaces will be strictly optional.
Leadership structures will become increasingly flat,
as roles shift based on each individual’s strengths
and capabilities. Many decisions will become
automated, using increasingly sophisticated
analytical tools, allowing people to focus on
creative endeavors that are uniquely human.”
Oliver Bussmann is the CIO for SAP AG, the
German multinational software corporation that
makes enterprise software to manage business
operations and customer relations. For additional
insights, follow Oliver on Twitter @SAPCIO or on
LinkedIn
On Religion And The Papacy: John Allen
“First, it will be increasingly led from the global
south, where two-thirds of the 1.1 billion Catholics
on the planet live today, and where three-quarters
will be found by mid-century. Places such as
Mumbai, Manila and Abuja will be to the 21st
century what Paris, Leuven and Milan were to the
16th century – the primary centers of new
intellectual imagination, pastoral leadership, and
political momentum. As that transition unfolds,
Catholicism on the global stage will become
increasingly a church of the poor and a church
committed to the agenda of the developing world,
meaning economic justice, multilateralism, and
opposition to war.
Second, Catholicism in the West will be increasingly
‘evangelical,’ meaning committed to defense of its
traditional identity in an ever more secular milieu.
Once upon a time, Catholicism was the culture-
shaping majority in the West. Today it’s an
embattled subculture, and like other subcultures,
it’s learning to practice a “politics of identity” as an
antidote to assimilation. In Europe and North
America, in other words, Catholicism will not soften
its role in the culture wars, but rather dial it up.”
John L. Allen, Jr. is an American journalist, author of
several books, a senior correspondent for
the National Catholic
Reporter, and vaticanologist of CNN and NPR. For
additional insights, go to his Wikipedia page.
On Global Warming: Gene Robinson
“Twenty years ago, alarmists were already
predicting calamitous effects in the near future
from a warming planet due mainly to petroleum
and coal combustion. The 1990 best-seller Dead
Heat painted a nightmarish picture of our world in
2020-2030 when the temperature would average
six or seven degrees greater. The first IPCC reports
of 1990 and 1995 supported such scary scenarios,
giving them an aura of scientific respectability.
What actually happened is that the mean global
temperature since 1993 increased about 0.2 degree
C through 2012 with most of that occurring in the
record year of 1998, at the peak of a thirty-year
warming trend. Since then, the global temperature
has plateaued with no clear trend up or down.
Because the flattening is at the high point of a
warming trend, each year has to be among the
warmest recorded years, as the media tirelessly
trumpets. What a convenient way to mask the fact
that although CO2 has continued to increase,
temperature has not, in spite of the computer
models.
What, then, can we project for global warming in
2033? Instead of the abrupt warming that alarmists
always say is about to start, my rather cloudy
crystal ball says global temperature is more likely
to continue showing no clear trend or to be at the
beginning of a cooling trend. Alarmists will continue
to blame every severe weather event on climate
change and to oppose all energy projects except
solar and wind. All studies supporting the alarmist
view will continue to be publicized in the liberal
media while all studies reaching conclusions in
opposition will be ignored. Liberal politicians will
still support schemes to tax carbon by trying to
scare people of what will happen without them,
even as the skepticism of ordinary people
continues to increase. Grants will still be doled out
to scientists whose previous results supported the
politically correct view while proposals from
skeptics go unfunded. In short, just as little has
changed with regard to the politicizing of the global
warming theory in the last twenty years, little is
likely to change in the next twenty.”
Dr. Gene D. Robinson is Professor Emeritus at
James Madison University in Virginia and author of
Global Warming: Alarmists, Skeptics & Deniers – A
Geoscientist Looks at the Science of Climate
Change, available at Amazon and most book stores.
He is also the publisher at Moonshine Cove
Publishing, LLC.
Bonus Thoughts From A Future Leader
“In the next two decades I believe my childhood
desire to be Inspector Gadget will finally be
realized. As it is now, our smartphones are
practically glued to our hands. They are almost an
extension of our bodies. People are calling for the
next step in technology to be ‘wearables,’ including
devices such as web-enabled watches and
eyeglasses. But is it really that far of a stretch to
imagine that we’d skip the annoyance of having to
“put on” our technology and instead just “plug in?”
By 2033 I believe that technological devices will be
directly implanted into our bodies. We are already
on the cusp of this with cochlear implants and
pacemakers, and it isn’t a stretch to see where this
could go next. In our future society, the boundaries
between machine and human, ability and disability,
will be blurred. Go Go Gadget…”

[Forbes.com]

Six Ways To Get Things Done When You’re Not The Boss

Achieving your goals in today’s workplace is about
the right behaviors–not the right job titles. That’s
true whether you’re operating in a boardroom
meeting, on a PTA committee, or running your own
small company. It’s possible to get results from
people who don’t report to you; influence
colleagues in differing roles or generations; and
lead initiatives without being the boss. These steps
can help you create a natural following.
1. Customize your approach. Bend, adjust, and
mold your style to fit someone else’s. If she wants
to hear from you via voicemail and email, it doesn’t
matter if you think that’s outdated or cumbersome.
You’ll get better, faster results if you adjust your
style to what she wants, rather than communicating
with her via text because you prefer it. When you
make it effortless for someone to respond to you or
work with you, she will.
2. Control the vision, not the process. If you
can help others see what you need from them,
you’ll be more likely to get it. People want a clear
vision of what’s expected so they can successfully
achieve it. But leave the how-to-get-there to the
person whose help you seek. Don’t micromanage
the process. Instead, fill in your end-result picture
with exceptional detail and allow others to chart a
path.
3. Enhance the commitment. Salespeople ask
for the sale, and you need to ask for a commitment
and projected delivery date: “Can I count on you for
this? When can I expect you’ll get it to me?” Then
offer assistance and ask what help might ease their
priorities or smooth their way: “What can I do to
help you? Is there anything you need?” Follow
through immediately if you need to involve others,
or provide additional information.
Then, get permission to follow up: “Is it okay if I
check back next week and see if you need anything
else?” This check-in is not an attempt to manage
them; that’s not your role. Rather, it’s a second
chance for you to clear obstacles or assist should
difficulties arise that could prevent you from
getting what you need when you need it.
4. Help them, help you. When we need
something, we tend to make things easier for
ourselves–not others. But those who get great
results do the opposite: they make it easier for the
person they need something from. Have to get a
quote for a press release from a busy manager?
Draft two alternatives they can choose from or
tweak. Need a status update from teammates?
Don’t make them comply with a predesigned
format that’s easier for you. Let them give their
update in whatever fashion they want, even if it’s
over lunch, walking to a meeting, or from a
surrogate.
A project that’s crucial for you to move forward
may be low on the priority list of others. Develop
the spec, straw-person, or outline and have them
sign off. Complete the funding documents or
shepherd approvals through the process. Write the
proposal and give it to them or their staff for
review. Figure out ways to help them help you, and
they will.
5. Act like a musketeer. The Three Musketeers
got it right – “All for one and one for all!” Like 17th-
century musketeers who understood if one was in
trouble, they all were in trouble, those who get
great results operate with unspoken commitments
that go beyond self-interest.
Accountability is essential to being a musketeer.
People respect, trust, and want to work with
colleagues who don’t hide their mistakes, invent
cover-ups, or blame others. Those who step up, own
a problem, and work to fix it build relationship
capital. In an era where it’s difficult to trust the
messages or the messengers, behavioral integrity
is at the root of influence.
6. Be trustworthy. If you want to get better
results from those who don’t report to you, being
trusted counts. In fact, it’s the essential difference
in the operating style of those who consistently
make things happen without title and authority and
those who don’t. So be consistent and honor your
commitments. It will give others confidence in you
and the relationship.

[Forbes.com]

The 1-Click Shopping – BuyCommonthings.Com

1 click1-Click, also called one-click or one-click buying, is the technique of allowing customers to make online purchases with a single click, with the payment information needed to complete the purchase already entered by the user previously. More particularly, it allows an online shopper using an internet marketplace to purchase an item without having to use shopping cart software. Instead of manually inputting billing and shipping information for a purchase, a user can use one-click buying to use a predefined address and credit card number to purchase one or more items.
This new style of shopping online has been made popular by the best online grocery company in Nigeria BuyCommonThings.com and they are now putting words into action by commencing a schedule delivery of purchased goods to their esteemed clients who have signed up through their channel and also have indicated their willingness to participate and also shop regularly.
The beauty of it all about this shopping style and technique Is that not only is it quite convenient, affordable and less stressful, it literally saves you a whopping 50% off your shopping time, affording you the best of your time.
To sign up for this program kindly follow the link http://bit.ly/VkpMML

Why You’re Not A Leader

Why-You-Are-Not-a-Leader-300x227Everybody thinks they’re a leader – most are far from it. The harsh reality is that we live in a world awash with wannabe leaders. As much as some don’t want to admit it, not everyone can or should become a leader (my take on the born vs. made argument). Simply desiring to be a leader doesn’t mean a person has the character, skill, and courage necessary to be a leader.

If you think you’re a leader, but haven’t been recognized as such, you have a problem. Either you’re incorrect in your self-assessment, or those you report to don’t recognize your talent. Here’s the good news; handled correctly, either scenario can be resolved if you’re willing to do some work.

I’m often asked what it takes to get to the top – it’s as if people want an add water and mix recipe for leadership. While there are many paths to leadership, they’re certainly not all created equal. Perhaps a more telling issue in today’s world is many of those desiring to get ahead, have no desire to help others get ahead.

I never cease to be amazed at the numbers of people in leadership positions that shouldn’t be. Likewise, I’ve stopped being surprised when those charged with leadership development can’t seem to figure out what constitutes a leader. It’s my hope the following list will eliminate the confusion about why someone isn’t a leader. You’re not a leader if…

You don’t get results: Real leaders perform – they get the job done – they consistently exceed expectations. No results = no leadership – it’s just that simple.
You get results the wrong way: If the only way you can solve the deficit described in point #1 above is through chicanery or skullduggery you’re not a leader. The ends don’t justify the means. If you abuse your influence, don’t treat people well, or confuse manipulation with leadership, you may win a few battles, but you’ll lose the war. Optics over ethics never ends well, and being a jerk doesn’t make you a leader.
You don’t care: Indifference is a characteristic not well suited to leadership. You simply cannot be a leader if you don’t care about those you lead. The real test of any leader is whether or not those they lead are better off for being led by them.
You’re chasing a position and not a higher purpose: If you value self-interest above service beyond self you simply don’t understand the concept of leadership. Leadership is about caring about something beyond yourself, and leading others to a better place – even if it means you take a back seat, or end up with no seat at all. Power often comes with leadership, but it’s not what drives real leaders.
You care more about making promises than keeping them: Leadership isn’t about your rhetoric; it’s about your actions. Leadership might begin with vision casting, but it’s delivering the vision that will ultimately determine your success as a leader.
You put people in boxes: Stop telling people why they can’t do something and show them how they can. Leaders don’t put people in boxes, it’s their obligation to free them from boxes. True leadership is about helping people reach places they didn’t know they could go.
You follow the rules instead of breaking them: Status quo is the great enemy of leadership. Leadership is nothing if not understanding the need for change, and then possessing the ability to deliver it.
You churn talent instead of retain it: Real leadership serves as a talent magnet – not a talent repellent. If you can’t acquire talent, can’t develop talent, or can’t retain talent you are not a leader.
You take credit instead of giving it: True leadership isn’t found seeking the spotlight, but seeking to shine the spotlight on others. The best leaders only use “I” when accepting responsibility for failures. Likewise, they are quick to use “we” when referring to successes.
You care about process more than people: But for the people there is no platform. Without the people you have nothing to lead. When you place things above the people you lead you have failed as a leader.

An all glass house offers spectacular views

glass-house-1-thumb-550x385

glass-house-4-thumb-550x350People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. One should also note that people who live in glass houses should give up any and all hopes of privacy and be ready to shell out over $600,000 to get a 3-bedroom house designed by Italian maestro, Carlo Santambrogio. Alexander Frangoul from Germany had designed a similar house but only the walls were made of glass. However, almost every aspect of this house is made of glass, from the dining table, to the stairs. The home, which is available from the architect’s London Portland Street showroom, was designed after a client requested it and is entirely made of glass, even the staircase.

Showcasing Santambrogio’s latest glass furniture range, Simplicity, the glass house design stands with 7mm walls, which can specially heated to shield occupants from the elements. So if you have the funds, a glass designer and an architect, Santambrogio is willing to design the dream glass house that you always wanted. Our suggestion – try to find a secluded spot while building this home.

How to Be The Worst Manager — But The Best Boss

cowboy-croppedThe worst managers can make the best leaders. And a great leader can become the very best kind of boss. How can this be true? I’ll explain.To begin with, what is a manager? In the prevailing sense they are individuals whose job is to accomplish work through others. Managers instruct, supervise, motivate, evaluate, and mete out rewards and punishment. They manage from behind by cracking the whip, micromanaging, and shouting orders in the same way cattlemen or shepherds manage by fear, intimidation and authority.

Problem one in this scenario is the way people come to be managers in the first place. Most typically, managers are employees who are promoted because of their expertise in a certain subject matter. They became managers by becoming highly proficient in their original jobs.

As managers, they are generally untrained and they have no mentors or positive role models to guide them in this much different path. Even when training is provided, it is generally schooling on the various facets of measuring work production and controlling employee behaviors. (I refer to this as “managing from behind.”) Little or nothing is taught on the character traits and values a company stands for, and would seemingly want its managers—the face of the company for every employee within it—to represent and exude.

So what do these individuals do? They become terrible managers.

They micromanage.
They take credit for others’ ideas and projects.
They focus effort on rules for the many that are meant to police and control the behavior of a few.
They make decisions that support their near term compensation at the expense of the organization’s long term goals.
They hire and fire the wrong people—for the wrong reasons.
They rule by force, fear, intimidation and title

We could write many articles—even books–on bad managerial behavior. In general, however, the result is the work environment we all know too well: Fear, mistrust, worries over job security, and feelings of unfairness and ill will. And, of course, a terrible company culture.

These are the reasons I’ve worked to eliminate traditional managers altogether, as many of you know and as I’ve written about here and here.

So what should businesses do?

In our own company, we extend the principles of agile development into agile leadership (management is not a word in the Fishbowl vernacular.) We create paired leadership teams who guide and empower employees to do their jobs in the way they see fit. Our “captains” work side by side with their teams, rather than directing and controlling them in a traditional sense. They lead from the front and set the pace. They show by example and their people follow.

Captains are terrible managers, but they are incredible leaders. Their teams produce great results. Here are a few of the traits that can turn one of these “terrible managers” into an incredible boss:

Trust your employees, and also trust in your employees to get their jobs done. No micromanaging.
Help others get ahead when deserved, even at your own expense. What a novel idea. Don’t worry about climbing the corporate ladder. If your people and teams are successful, you’ll rise, too.
Give credit where it is due – Don’t take unfair credit for others’ work, however enticing the idea might be. It will not pay off. Here again—when you allow others to rise freely, you rise, too.
Set the strategy, but allow others to choose their own tactics. It’s amazing how empowering and motivating it can be when individuals get to manage the details of how the strategic goal is achieved. They will become unstoppable.
Hold fewer (and more focused) meetings – The fewer people at each meeting the better. Define exactly what you need to achieve in each meeting, and stick to an agenda when you arrive.
Celebrate failure and reward innovation – Encourage team members to try new things, even knowing they won’t always produce perfect results. They will make mistakes. These mistakes will be opportunities to learn and fail forward. This will result in employees who are brave and excited to work.
Be in the people business. Truly be in it. If your people know that you have their backs, you trust them, you care for their well being and their families (beyond the job—such as helping employees complete a college education, and including families in departmental parties and company events), you will naturally and gently lead your team to a positive outcome.
How do you find individuals with this “terrible manager” potential? Again, against prevailing wisdom, they may not be proficient (or even familiar) with the tasks of the team. But they will be highly capable and teachable in the values your organization stands for. The rest will follow.

An anthropology graduate could become a development lead. A licensed attorney could lead a world-class sales organization. A culinary student could become a standout leader in customer support. An electrician could become a top sales executive. A banker could become a top Account Manager. The list could go on and on.

What are the right core values? For Fishbowl, they are the 7 Non Negotiables: Belief, Loyalty, Trust, Commitment, Respect, Courage and Gratitude. For us, these traits have produced 60-plus percent growth for the past six years—award winning software—and a set of national and global corporate awards.

Even if—and especially if–you are a terrible traditional manager, what could this bigger vision of leadership be accomplishing for your company? Or for you?

HR, Leadership, Technology, and Talent Management Predictions for 2013

 

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2013 looks to be a year of global growth, but for HR and talent leaders, it will likely continue to present challenges. Bersin by Deloitte just released our 2013 predictions for corporate HR, leadership, and talent management.  You can read the entire report here.

Overall:  

A year of global talent imbalances. 

 

 

As the economy starts to grow here and around the world, companies see major imbalances in their skills. Our research shows organizations are struggling to build a global leadership pipeline, train leaders locally, develop strategic mobility programs, and deepen core technical skills. Workforce capabilities have not kept up with the varying changes in business demand, creating an imbalance between what businesses need and they can find in the labor market.

Predi

ction 1: Flatter organizations and focus on agility will change HR practices.

 

In 2013 more and more companies will see the value of what we call “agile management” and “agile HR.” Organizations now operate as flattened, cross-functional teams, creating demand for less top-down HR and management styles.

This is forcing changes in performance and goal management, performance management, reward strategies, and leadership skills. Our research shows that compani

es which revisit goals for employees quarterly, for example, outperform those which set goals annually by more than 30%.

High performing managers play a hands-on role, redefining the role of leadership. Witness the growth of cloud-based technology and service companies which are rapidly disrupting more traditional organizations.  These fast-movers focus heavily on decentralized, hands-on, technical leadership.

Prediction 2: HR Transformation projects will accelerate.

Many companies we talk with want to “transform HR.” It’s high time. The HR organization of the past is dying away, being replaced by a team of highly skilled and specialized professionals. Just as sales, marketing, manufacturing, and f

inance professionals have become highly specialized, so will HR. And cloud-based systems will finally make integrated HR technology to many organizations.

Developing a global HR service delivery model is also a big topic this year. We predict a new model of HR will emerge, one which focuses on global delivery of core services, talent services, as well as what we call “strategic enablement” services.  And technology will play a much larger role. (Look at the rapid growth in HR technology companies.)

Prediction 3: Global leadership and bench-strength will be a high priority.

Of all the programs HR executives want to improve, our research shows that global leadership is #1. And our research also shows that companies with mature leadership development strategies dramatically outperform their peers. If there’s anything you should invest in this year, it’s revamping and expanding your global leadership development program. More details in thepredictions report.

Prediction 4: Globalization of HR and talent practices will be a major focus.

Many HR programs are developed at a corporate location and then “rolled out” to the business. Unfortunately this often doesn’t work. The way people need to be sourced, managed, compensated, and evaluated varies by geography. Why? There are workforce dynamic differences (some countries have huge labor shortages), cultural differences (some countries require individual motivation, others thrive on group motivation), and skills differences.

In 2013 organizations should learn how to “globally localize” all strategic HR programs. This means shifting authority toward the business and improving local HR skills (more on this below).

Prediction 5: Capability development and continuous learning will begin to replace the focus on “informal learning.”

The L&D industry has gone through a renaissance over the last few years as companies have focused efforts on what we call “informal learning.” It’s time to consider throwing that phrase away and rather focus on “continuous capability development.”

In 2013  we see organizations focused on on-demand training, coaching, simulations, and management-led on the job programs. Spending on corporate training is up (12% last year), and more than 60% of all L&D spending is now spent on “no

n-classroom” content and programs. The world of blended learning has become very real and this year companies need to focus on their learning architecture, standardizing technology platforms, and developing the skills to build game and simulation-based programs.

Prediction 6: Specialization and career development will emerge as a key talent strategy.

Jobs have become highly specialized (Read “”The End of a Job as We Know It for more detail.). As a result, the need to develop deep skills has increased. So if you want to build a high-performing company, you should let people specialize and p

ut in place programs which facilitate in-place promotion and developmental job rotation. We need fewer managers and more “doers” these days, and that means we must focus on skills ladders, professional career programs, and formalized career development programs.

Much of this was in place when I entered the workforce in 1978 and it’s now coming back.

Prediction 7: Facilitated talent mobility will become an important initiative.

We’ve entered a workforce that needs to, and wants to, move around. Rather than let people “manage their own careers,” we should provide internal opportunities. Employees today have lower levels of engagement than ever before, which means they may leave your company if they don’t find rewarding work.

The new buzzword is “facilitated talent mobility.” Don’t leave it up to employees to figure out where to go next, build a talent mobility strategy that lets your high-performers e find the “right job” for them and for you.

Prediction 8: Talent Management software will start to commod

itize and HRMS replacement will accelerate

The $4 Billion+ market for talent management software (applicant tracking, performance management, succession, learning, compensation) has somewhat consolidated, giving customers a more integrated set of solutions.

In 2012 we saw all the major ERP vendors gobble up talent management providers. These transactions were driven by buyer demand for integrated end-to-end talent and HR systems, and this trend should accelerate.

New research we will soon publish shows that the average age of a core HR system is near

ly 7 years old. It’s time to replace these things, and 2013 will begin a cycle of accelerating growth in core system replacement. HR software vendors with cloud-based integrated HRMS tools and payroll offerings will benefit.

Despite the vendor consolidation , a great deal of innovation is taking place. A flurry of new candidate relationship management, social sourcing, social learning, and employee assessment platforms are being launched. Venture capital firms see the opportunity and are heavily investing in these new markets.

Prediction 9: Many HR analytics, BigData, and workforce planning tools will emerge.

Easy to use HR software for analytics and workforce planning has been hard to find. Today these tools are getting a lot of focus, so in 2013 we will likely see more and more HR analytics solutions come to market. We are focused heavily in this area ourselves, investing in our benchmarking data to help companies leverage BigData in their HR strategies.

The challenge in HR analytics continues to be capabilities and experience. It will take years for HR organizations to evolve their analytics strategies. While tools are important, in 2013 companies will continue to build internal skills, hire consultants, and stitch together systems to improve their HR analytics solutions.

Prediction 10: Mobile HR tools will become critical

I moderated a panel of 200 HR professionals at the HR Technology Conference this year and every single person I spoke with told me their workforce wanted mobile HR tools. These are simple applications: expense reporting, time and attendance, training, employee directory, etc. The HR software market is catching up to this demand and by the end of 2013 we will likely see many new fantastic mobile HR tools in the market.

When

we ask organizations why they want to replace their HR systems, the #1 issue they cite is “poor user interface.” We have all tried to deal with awkward HR systems over the years. Putting this functionality into a mobile app is one way to solve this problem.

Prediction 11: Social tools will begin to change HR practices

There are some important and innovative social HR tools which are changing the way HR works. These include social rewards systems, social performance systems, social sourcing systems, and social learning environments.

These new

tools implement people practices differently: they leverage the “wisdom of crowds” rather than the “wisdom of the manager.”

Just as we now see the wisdom of crowds change the way marketing decisions take place, the same shift is happening in talent management. If you found out that 80% of your employees saw great value from a lower level employee, wouldn’t you want to promote her?  Even if her manager didn’t notice? These new tools unlock this valuable source of management insights.

Prediction 12: Engagement and Diversity will enter the world of Talent Management

Several years ago a large consumer goods company asked me if “diversity” was part of talent management. I had to scratch my head. Well yes, it is. Today the workforce is

highly diverse (gender, age, ethnicity, religion, physical ability, intellectual ability, learning style, etc.) and research shows that diverse teams outperform non-diverse teams. Plus most companies are recruiting in a diverse labor pool. So diversity is no longer a compliance program, it’s a talent management strategy.

As far as engagement goes, research shows that employees are pretty burned out right now. They’ve been working hard and receiving less pay in the last five years, leading to the lowest general engagement scores in a decade. And thanks to the open worl

d of social networks, unhappy employees can tell people about their unhappiness very quickly. So if you dont have a program to measure, monitor, and improve engagement you should develop one.

Prediction 13: Structure of HR and Role of Business Partners will change.

We believe that the traditional model of “HR Generalist” is dying (and for good reason). Companies don’t want HR administrators any more, they need specialists. This means the general structure of HR is changing, and we are doing aw

ay with HR “service centers” and replacing them with true “centers of excellence” or “leading-practice groups.” This is a major focus of our research this year.

And by the way, the growth in HR analytics will start to deliver more tools into the hands of line managers, again making HR think differently.

Prediction 14: Reskilling of HR is a top need.

CHROs, CLOs,  and Talent Management executives tell us that one of their biggest challenge is the skills of their own teams. If you don’t have a continuous career development program for you HR team, you should build one. This marketplace and the world of talent management is changing fast. The HR team wants to keep up, so organizations need to invest in their skills.

Prediction 
We are going to launch a series of research studies on what it means to be a “Bold CHRO.” What our research shows is that companies who win in this skills-constrained talent environment have forward thinking, innovative HR leaders. 2013 is the time to be “bold” and take some risks. People management is changing, and so should HR and L&D.15: 2013 is the year of the “Bold CHRO”

 

 

Entrepreneurs On Business Partnerships: Work With Someone You Know

Over the past decade, dramatic improvements in
technology have changed the way we do business.
More than ever, people are choosing to strike out on
their own and start their own companies. You might
call it The Age of the Entrepreneur.
But with this freedom comes challenges: searching
for capital, spending long nights brainstorming and
making tough decisions, maintaining faith in your
vision from its infancy. Finding the right partner
with whom to embark upon this journey can
perhaps be the most important decision you make
— after all, you may end up spending as much time
with this person as you do with as your own spouse
or significant other.
At the recent forum “A Marriage of Convenience:
Keys to a Successful Business Partnership,” Forbes
and Capital One Spark brought together seven
entrepreneurs for a discussion exploring the art of
the business partnership.
Nearly 200 guests were in attendance at the
December 6th event. The evening began with a
reception where attendees had the opportunity to
network over cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.
We spoke with entrepreneur Nick Veneris, the
cofounder (with David Gorcey) of Nerdy With
Children, a website for alternative parents whose
mission is to “encourage children to inherit the
same awesomely nerdy ways.”
“[It’s] always great to network, to see the daily
struggle that other entrepreneurs are going
through,” he said. ”It’s important to know that
you’re not alone. But that’s what makes it exciting
– there’s no safety net. That’s what life’s about. It’s
about taking risks, winning and losing, and learning
from it.”
Jordan Silverman, founder of Star Toilet Paper, a
startup that helps advertisers promote their logos
and deals on rolls of toilet paper, spoke about his
reasons for attending the event.
“Since we’re actively looking for partners on
different fronts, what I hope to learn is what to look
for in a potential partner,” he explained, “and when
to know if it’s a good fit for a company, especially a
start-up.”
The reception was followed by a panel discussion
led by moderator Scott Gerber, founder of The
Young Entrepreneur Council. The panelists
comprised a unique group of entrepreneurs –
brothers Jonah and Noah Goodhart
of Moat and RightMedia; husband-and-wife team
Tad Martin and Heidi Messer of Collective[i]; and
close friends Amy Jain and Daniella Yacobovsky
of BaubleBar.
The panelists had a lively discussion about best
practices for choosing business partners. All were in
unilateral agreement that taking on a business
partner was an important step in growing your
business.
Panelist Daniella Yacobovsky highlighted the value
of taking on a partner: ”There are so many highs
and lows, and having someone that is going
through it with you is really a calming thing.”
In a follow-up email after the event, Noah Goodhart
addressed the benefits of taking on a partner
versus going it alone.
“Starting a business is a long and difficult multi-
year endeavor with many ups and downs,” he
said, ”and I believe you are more likely to succeed
by finding a great partner that shares your vision
and is willing to make the right sacrifices to build a
successful business with you.”
Because of the nature of all the panelists’ close ties
with their business partners, much of the evening’s
discussion also focused on the benefits of working
with someone with whom you have a personal
relationship outside of the workplace.
“In many ways, a business partnership is similar to
a marriage. At minimum, you need absolute trust in
your partner. Will this person be loyal? Will they
have your back in tough times?” said panelist Heidi
Messer, whose business partner is also her
husband.
She added, “Knowing that you are going to have
good times, challenging times and many important
decisions to make, this person should be someone
with whom you can have frank discussions (and
disagreements) about anything that impacts the
business.”
As the event came to a close, entrepreneur Victoria
Gunn, founder of Ice Wine Exclusives, expressed
satisfaction in the evening’s discussion. “One of the
things that meant most to me was simply, ‘How am
I building my relationships with my business
partners?’” she said. ”I really appreciated their
input into this, because I had not taken a lot of this
into consideration, but I will take [it] into
consideration tomorrow.”

Seven Strategies To Reboot Your Job Search In 2013

With 12.2 million Americans currently unemployed
and a reported 86% of employees interested in
finding a new job in 2013, landing your dream job
may be more competitive than ever.
For those who may not know where to begin, the
most important thing you can do is “get out there
and start today rather than waiting to be totally
ready,” says Carol Camerino, a certified career
management coach. At a professional networking
event hosted by job-search firm TheLadders, which
attracted over 3,500 job seekers in New York,
Camerino offered her seven-step plan for
successfully rebooting your job search and getting
back to work.
Define What You Want
According to Camerino, one of the most difficult
questions for job seekers is also the most basic:
What are you looking for? “Think of yourself as
standing at the counter of the cosmic career
Starbucks,” she says, “and the barista asks, ‘What
do you want?’ Oftentimes, people don’t know how
to answer.” She advises taking a step back and
considering where you want to be. Which strengths
and skills do you want to act on? What kind of
people, culture and work environment do you want
to invest your time in? Answering some of these
foundational questions will inform your job search
strategies. Moreover, people will be better able to
help you if you know what to ask for.
Determine And Polish Relevant Skills
“Chances are you’re used to your old company’s
way of doing things,” says Camerino. However, to
be a competitive candidate it’s important to
understand which skills are most relevant and in
demand to advance your job search. Then, create a
plan to polish those skills or gain them. She
recommends seeking internships, taking strategic
volunteering positions, leveraging professional
associations or creating a blog to highlight the
expertise necessary for the job you hope to land.
Beware The Worst Job Search Obstacles
Despite their best intentions for landing a new job,
Camerino sees job seekers fall into the same traps
again and again. Chief among these barriers is a
narrow, negative mindset, as many people get
rooted in the identity of their former job. Instead,
she recommends transmitting where you’re going
versus where you’ve been. Another common
obstacle is clutter. She says a disorganized physical
workspace or job-search system can produce
mental clutter that interferes with productivity.
Finally, she suggests guarding your time. “When
people find out you’re free during the day, your
dance card can get full,” she says. Fall back on the
fail-safe response, “I’d love to, but my job is job
searching, so I can’t.”
Assess Your Time Management
“Finding a job is a job,” says Camerino. Yet often
when she asks job-seekers how much time they’re
willing and able to devote to looking, they come up
with answers like a couple hours a day or even a
couple hours a week. “That won’t cut it,” she says.
“If you’re looking for a full-time job, you need to
spend full-time hours looking.” Of course, it’s
quality as much as quantity, so she suggests
mapping out how to divvy up time spent towards
different job-search strategies, be it online
applying, networking or research.
Update Your Marketing Campaign
Camerino suggests framing a job search as a
marketing effort: “It’s a brand campaign. You’re
trying to get people interested in the brand of you.”
She says a resume is your primary marketing tool,
so should be reviewed, tweaked or professionally
written if it’s not getting any responses.
Additionally, she advises paying a lot of attention
to social media and making sure your message is
professional and consistent across platforms. On
LinkedIn, it’s important to have a keyword-rich
profile, participation in appropriate industry groups
and good contacts. On other mediums like Twitter,
Facebook and Pinterest, she suggests taking a
critical eye to your privacy settings and the brand
you’ve developed. Finally, depending on your
industry, she recommends considering a blog or
digital portfolio to display your work and
experience.
Do Your Homework
Prepare, prepare, prepare, Camerino insists.
“Winging an interview doesn’t work.” She
recommends preparing stories to tell in the
interview that will highlight three aspects of your
experience and work ethic: challenges you’ve
faced, actions you’ve taken and results you’ve
gotten. These can’t be pulled out of thin air on the
spot, so need to be prepared ahead of time.
However, she cautions against memorizing exact
wording because it will come across as flat.
Remember To Have Fun
Above all, Camerino recommends taking a
balanced approach to a job search. Because your
former job circumstances may have left you feeling
angry or bitter, she suggests coming to terms with
those feelings so that you don’t inadvertently “leak
out” negativity. Furthermore, you should make a
point to have fun. See friends and participate in
activities you enjoy. On the one hand, it will keep
your spirits up. On the other, if you’re out seeing
people and socializing, you never know who might
have a job lead or be able to connect you with
someone who does.

The Ethics of Social Media – Part II: Playing by New Rules

biz ethicsby James Hyatt

While businesses sort out their social media policies, many federal agencies are wading in to referee the online world.

-The Obama Administration, through the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration, is drafting what it calls “Internet Policy 3.0,” to address several issues including privacy and cybersecurity. One proposal: Fair Information Practice Principles, which an official says would be “the information privacy framework in the United States to clarify how personal data on the Internet is protected.”

–The Federal Trade Commission in April moved up its review of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule to see if changes are needed; the rule requires operators of Web sites and online services that target children under age 13 to obtain verifiable parental consent before they collect, use, or disclose personal information from children.

–The Food and Drug Administration’s division of Drug Marketing, Advertising, and Communications expects to begin issuing as early as December 2010 guidance on a series of social media issues faced by the pharmaceutical industry, such as how manufacturers can address misinformation listed on a third-party site.

— Last December, the Federal Trade Commission revised its guidelines on use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. Among other changes, the revisions declare that celebrities should disclose their relationships with advertisers “when making endorsements outside the context of traditional ads, such as on talk shows or in social media.”

–The Defense Department in February took steps to open up social media links to members of the armed forces, and notes thousands of Facebook, Twitter and other page have been registered. Failing to obtain the “chain of command’s approval, well that’s not good – plain and simple,” the DOD says.

–The Securities and Exchange Commission has encouraged public companies to expand shareholder and public communication through use of the Internet; the policy has led to some controversy over how a company goes about releasing financial information promptly and widely.

Microsoft in October said it would begin using its Investor Relations Web site as the “authoritative portal” for financial and other information, and no longer use financial newswires. The move prompted Business Wire, owned by Berkshire Hathaway Co., to label the move “a textbook example of ‘worst practices’ investor relations.” Business Wire, of course, derives much of its revenue from disseminating corporate press releases. Business Wire Chairman and CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz pointedly concluded: “There’s a large investor in Omaha who doesn’t want to be checking hundreds of websites minute-by-minute throughout the day. But then again, who would?”

Can I buy a social media fix?

As might be expected, the social media commotion has prompted a wave of products and services intended to help businesses cope with the challenges – much like the trend I chronicled five years ago in the wake of Sarbanes-Oxley.

Cisco Systems Inc. in early November unveiled Cisco SocialMiner, software designed to monitor in real time “status updates, forum posts, or blogs from customers…alerting enterprises of conversations related to their brand.” Cisco said with 34% of online Americans having used Facebook, Twitter “or other social media to rant or rave about a product, company or brand,” businesses need to be aware of what customers are saying and “respond to general inquiries or rectify customer service issues so as to enhance and protect brand reputation.”

And Cisco introduced a “rich media capture platform that supports the recording, playback, live streaming and storage of media, including audio and video” to capture, preserve and mine conversations for business intelligence.

(Cisco’s Facebook page in mid-November had 113,862 “friends”.)

Or consider ReputationDefender, a service that “controls how you look when someone Googles you or your business.” The MyEdge Pro product is “proven to increase positive content and actively combat false, misleading or irrelevant Google results for businesses and business owners including doctors, lawyers, executives, contractors, real estate agents – anyone whose business depents on their reputation.”

For $9.95 a month, another of the company’s products, MyPrivacy, will remove personal information from the web, monitor the Internet, and create a “do not track” list for you at over 100 online networks.

TextGuard provides a service to let businesses record telephone conversations and voicemails on company mobile devices; financial regulators increasingly are requiring that companies keep a record of such communications.

And companies with a long history of document storage and research services are expanding into the wired world. Xerox Litigation Services, which hosts more than two billion pages of data for 20,000 clients, last year added its “E-mail Analytics” service to help aid investigations and help companies respond to requests in legal cases. Xerox said more than 70% of the data it hosts is in email.

Hello Sweetheart, Get Me Twitter

Journalism is awash in hand-wringing over social media issues. Reporters debate using Facebook and Twitter in chasing down story ideas; editors worry about how to link online material to other web sites; and readers wonder about how reliable “news” they see on the web really is. (A photo of a tornado passing the Statue of Liberty, widely circulated in September when a storm hit the New York City area, turned out to be from 1976.)

Washington Post managing editor Raju Narisetti in October reminded newsroom employees not to use social media accounts to “answer critics and speak on behalf of the Post.” The reminder came after a staffer apparently fired back at critics of a piece the paper had published.

Many major media organizations have revised and reissued their ethical codes to address the concerns.

For example, Reuters’ guidelines on “Reporting from the Internet” stress that “discovering information publicly available on the web is fair game. Defeating passwords or other security methods is going too far.” And, “do not use anything from the Internet that is not sourced in such a way that you can verify where it came from.” Wikipedia “can be a good starting point for research, but it should not be used as an attributable source,” Reuters declares.

National Public Radio in October reminded news staff members that “NPR journalists may not participate in marches and rallies involving causes or issues that NPR covers,” and pointedly noted the restriction included the Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert rallies in Washington. And, the memo added, “you must not advocate for political or other polarizing issues online.”

Doctors have their own social media issues; some have abandoned use of Facebook and other venues, deciding the risks of give-and-take with and about patients is too great a threat to privacy. A California psychologist writes that “casual viewing of clients’ online content outside of the therapy hour can create confusion in regard to whether it’s being done as a part of your treatment or to satisfy my personal curiosity.”

Dr. Arthur R. Derse of the Medical College of Wisconsin, in a recent AMA Ethics Forum column, writes “an online consultation using social networks can go wrong in myriad ways. The dissemination of patient information in an electronic form to an open forum is fraught with risk.”

And medical students can be just as thoughtless as other students in their social media use. The Journal of the American Medical Association last year surveyed medical schools and found and 47 out of 78 schools reported “incidents of students posting unprofessional online content,” including violations of patient confidentiality, use of profanity, discriminatory language, depiction of intoxication and sexually suggestive material. And the survey found 30 schools had informally warned students and three had dismissed students. But only 28 out of 73 deans queried said their schools had policies about student-posted online content.

Co-eds Google Their Dates. What about Lawyers and Litigants?

The answer seems obvious: somebody sues you – see what they’ve been up to online. Not so fast.

Legal ethics committees in New York and Pennsylvania have addressed the question. In Pennsylvania, an attorney wondered whether a third party could “friend” a witness. The committee said no, calling such a step deception by not revealing the purpose to obtain information for use in a lawsuit.

In New York, the question was whether a lawyer could access a public website. The committee said okay, so long as the profile is generally available and the lawyer doesn’t “friend” the other party.

Currently, there are challenges to trial decisions because a juror tweeted during the trial, and debates over letting reporters tweet from the courtroom (some states permit it, federal courts generally oppose). A North Carolina judge was reprimanded for “friending” defense counsel and discussing a pending case with the judge (considered improper ex-parte communications). And many states are instructing jurors against using social media while hearing cases. “The information you are accessing is not evidence,” declares a model jury charge in New Jersey.

“Let’s Go to the Videotape!” – Not So Fast

The sports business presents a particularly curious set of ethical issues over social media.

Networks, which pay huge sums for exclusive rights to broadcast sporting events, are finding it hard to keep control over the broadcasting of live sporting events. They don’t want sportswriters using their content via the Internet and cellphones.

The New York Yankees ban fans from bringing video cameras and laptop computers into Yankee Stadium. The Washington Redskins have banned writers from tweeting or blogging while watching practices. The National Football League bans players and coaches from using social media such as tweeting for 90 minutes before, during, or some a time after a game.

Sports broadaster ESPN last year temporarily suspended popular “Sports Guy” columnist Bill Simmons for criticizing an ESPN radio station partner on Twitter. ESPN earlier had issued a policy prohibiting reporters and writers from discussing sports on social-networking sites.

The NCAA tries to keep coaches and schools from using social media outlets in recruiting. While they can advertise their programs online, they’re prohibited from using a site “for direct person-to-person contact with an individual potential student-athlete.” However, signing on as a “friend” doesn’t count as direct contact, the NCAA says. (Indiscrete Facebook entries by partying athlete recruits this year has led to legal investigations.)

The Ethics of Social Media – Part I: Adjusting to a 24/7 World

socialmedia

James Hyatt

So your company hasn’t had an OMG moment over Facebook ethics?

As they say, Good Luck With That.It has been almost a decade since Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in the wake of the Enron, Tyco and WorldCom scandals, seeking to put in place a variety of measures to protect investors and address standards of behavior. Over the years, once-controversial practices about disclosure and ethics have become generally accepted standards.

But the social media explosion – from email and Facebook to blogs and Twitter – is making a hash of once-resolved issues and creating all kinds of new dilemmas.

–Businesses have less and less control over how they communicate with the public, while 24-7 bloggers feel free to snipe away.

–Job seekers find their private lives may no longer be private and employees worry that the boss is electronically looking over their shoulders.

–Consumers can’t be sure their account information remains safe and have no way to tell whether favorable on-line comments about products and businesses are legitimate.

–Professionals of all sorts — psychiatrists, attorneys, school teachers, reporters, and even NFL players – are learning to live with new, often controversial, social media rules. A customer’s irate blog can undo months and years of corporate image work. A careless email can sabotage delicate contract talks or M&A negotiations. Failure to protect customer information can result in years of costly litigation. An old party-hearty photo may block a chance at a new job. Hitting “send” without thinking can torpedo an executive’s career.

In just one recent week:

–an email circulating among male employees at the PricewaterhouseCoopers Dublin offices – rating the ‘top 10’ new female recruits, with headshots – quickly went “viral” and drew widespread criticism. (Some tut-tutting newspapers, however, also saw fit to run the headshots as news.)

–an executive at Pacific Gas & Electric in California was put on paid leave after seeking to join, under an assumed name, an online discussion group critical of the utility’s plans to install “smart meters.”

–labor lawyers across the country warned clients that a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) office planned an unfair labor practice complaint against an ambulance company for firing an employee who posted negative Facebook comments about her supervisor.

–Britain’s financial regulator, seeking to address insider trading, ordered financial services firm to keep records of employee cellphone calls.

No wonder companies are rushing to build new defenses and adopt new policies to reinforce ethical behaviors and learning how to use social media to react to real-time problems. At the same time, individuals are rethinking their casual attitude about exposing personal information on the Web. And in Washington, government agencies are adopting new guidelines defining acceptable social media behavior.

Defining social media behavior is clearly a work in progress

A year ago, the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics and the Health Care Compliance Association looked at what organizations are doing about social media issues. Twenty-four percent of those surveyed said an employee had been disciplined in their organization for activities on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, more often in the not-for-profit sector. But half of the respondents said their organization had no policy regarding employee online activity outside of work.

Technology search firm Robert Half in April asked chief information officers about social networking policies; 38% said their companies have tightened social networking policies, while 17% say the policies have eased. And 55% reported “no change”.

A recent survey by Deloitte of about 1,700 companies found that 26% said they had no social media policy which 34% answered “not applicable/don’t know” even though 84% thought every company should have a social media policy in place.

Your Social Media Profile Can Affect Your Job Prospects

A survey commissioned by Microsoft in December 2009 found that 79% of hiring managers and job recruiters reviewed online information about job applicants, and 70% of U.S. hiring managers surveyed said they’d rejected candidates based on what they found online. “Chances are you already have a reputation online, even if you don’t want one,” Microsoft says. And three-fourths of the U.S. recruiters and HR professionals said their companies have formal policies requiring hiring personnel to research applicants online.

The survey firm declared that “Now, recruiters can easily and anonymously collect information that they would not be permitted to ask in an interview, and the survey found that recruiters are doing just that.”

Corporate and union attorneys went on alert early in November 2010 when word spread of the NLRB’s unfair labor practices complaint involving the Facebook posting. The NLRB said the company’s social media policies were “overly broad.” The LegalTimes blog quoted the company as saying “although the NLRB’s press release made it sound as if the employee was discharged solely due to negative comments posted on Facebook, the termination decision was actually based on multiple, serious issues.”

Although an administrative law judge will have to rule in the case, Philadelphia-based law firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP declared that “all private sector employers should take note of this issue, regardless of whether their workforce is represented by a union.”

You Need a Social Media Policy

Social media behavior “can have real legal and economic consequences for businesses,” writes attorney Michelle Sherman in a Social Media Law Update Blog for law firm Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

“A post may seem as innocent as an employee expressing a personal opinion. However, if the person describes herself as working for a particular company, and then speaks on a highly controversial subject, her post could damage the ‘good will’ of the company. Or, the poster may be recommending a product to all of her Facebook friends without sharing that she happens to work for the product manufacturer in violation of fair advertising practices.”

Sherman says adopting a social media policy can show compliance with Federal Trade Commission guidelines about endorsements, and can better protect brand value “by ensuring that employees do not post unflattering material in association with the business.”

One of the most remarkable studies is the 130-plus-page Social Media White Paper, now in its second edition, prepared by Reed Smith LLP. The paper review 13 areas where social media is impacting business – from advertising and marketing to trademarks – and declares “the key lesson is that rather trying to control, companies must adopt an altered set of rules of engagement.” Well worth a visit.

It has become increasingly common for major companies to issue specific directives on social media behavior. While most encourage employee efforts to put companies in a positive light, they also spell out acceptable conduct. For example:

(Wells Fargo): “By posting content on this Blog, you expressly grant Wells Fargo (and its affiliates) the right to use or distribute the posted content in any form, worldwide, and in perpetuity.”

(Kaiser Permanente): “Be mindful of the world’s longer memory – Everything you say is likely to be indexed and stored forever, either via search engines or through bloggers that reference your posts.”

(FedEx): By posting to the FexEx Citizenship Blog “you agree not to post or transmit anything unlawful, threatening, libelous, defamatory, obscene, inflammatory or pornographic, or anything that infringes upon the copyright, trademark, publicity rights or other rights of a third party.”

(Mayo Clinic): “Where your connection to Mayo Clinic is apparent, make it clear that you are speaking for yourself and not on behalf of Mayo Clinic. In those circumstances, you may want to include this disclaimer: ‘The views expressed on this [blog; website] are my own and do not reflect the views of my employer.”

(Microsoft): “As a general rule, Microsoft does not review, edit, censor, or, obviously, endorse individual posts. You should ‘be smart’ and, as an employee of the company, you should not only think about how your blog reflects on you as an individual, but also about how your blog affects Microsoft as a whole.”

Concerns go well beyond defining proper behavior and move into legal areas. FINRA, the successor to the National Association of Securities Dealers Inc., stresses that social media postings can violate industry rules about promoting investments and soliciting customers. FINRA says securities firms should take steps to be sure that employees using social media sites for business are “appropriately supervised” and “do not present undue risks to investors.”

The Social Media Business Council, a group of large companies that explore social media issues, posts a free “Disclosure Best Practices Toolkit” online suggesting checklists to help companies and employees “learn the appropriate and transparent ways to interact with blogs, bloggers, and the people who interact with them.”

It makes recommendations on how to deal with bloggers, on how employees should handle personal and unofficial blogging, on how to be transparent in providing rewards or incentives to bloggers, on best practices for third parties acting on behalf of a company, and on best practices for “artistic/entertainment situations where temporarily obscuring the sponsor of a site is necessary and appropriate.” For instance, it is okay to use a pretend blog where someone writes that they may have discovered aliens in their house to promote a science fiction movie. But it is not okay to create “a fake customer blog where the ‘author’ writes: ‘I’d love to go see this movie.’ “

Twelve Time Management Habits to Master in 2013.

Nearly three hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin came up with an approach to changing habits that has yet to be surpassed. A young adult seeking to straighten out his act, Franklin developed a list of thirteen virtues, jotting down a brief definition of each. These were character traits he took to be important, but in which he found himself lacking.
He knew that nurturing these habits would bring about positive change in his life.
Starting at the top of the list, Franklin spent one week working on each virtue. In the morning he thought about how he would reinforce the new habit throughout the day. During the day he looked at his notes to remind himself of the new habit. At the end of the day, he counted how many times he fell back into the old habit.
While Franklin was surprised at first to see how “faulty” his behavior was, he was so resolved that he pressed on, working through the entire list in a thirteen-week cycle, and completing four such cycles in a year. As for results, he noted in his autobiography that while perfection was unattainable, he could see big improvements.
Modern psychologists recognize three key elements in Franklin’s three-hundred-year-old procedure for
changing habits:
1. He started out committed to the new
behavior.
2. He worked on only one habit at a time.
3. He put in place visual reminders.
Applying Benjamin Franklin’s Method

Here are 12 time management habits for the new year. Tailor these as you like, but whatever you do, work on one each week using Benjamin Franklin’s method:

Habit 1: Strive to be authentic.
Be as honest with yourself as you can about what you want and why you do what you do.

Habit 2: Favor trusting relationships. Put your efforts into building relationships with people you can trust and count on, and make sure those same people can trust and count on you.

Habit 3: Maintain a lifestyle that will give you maximum energy.
Work your way up to doing aerobic exercise at least three times a week, eating a light lunch, and getting enough sleep.

Habit 4: Listen to your biorhythms and
organize your day accordingly.
Make it a habit to pay attention to regular fluctuations in your physical and mental energy levels throughout the day; and based on what you learn, make adjustments to how you schedule tasks.

Habit 5: Set very few priorities and stick to them.
Select a maximum of two things that are your highest priority, and plan time to work on them.

Habit 6: Turn down things that are
inconsistent with your priorities.
Get good at saying no to other people, and do so frequently.

Habit 7: Set aside time for focused effort.
Schedule time every day to work on just one thing.

Habit 8: Always look for ways of doing things better and faster.
Be on the lookout for tasks you do over and over again, and look for ways of improving how you do them.

Habit 9: Build solid processes. Set up processes that last and that run without your attention.

Habit 10: Spot trouble ahead and solve
problems immediately. Set aside time to think about what lies ahead, and face all problems as soon as you can.

Habit 11: Break your goals into small units of work, and think only about one unit at a time.
Spend most of your time working on the task in front of you, and avoid dreaming too much about the big goal.

Habit 12: Finish what’s important and stop doing what’s no longer worthwhile.
Don’t stop doing what you considered worth starting unless there’s a good reason to give it up.

Ten Resolutions The Most Successful People Make And Then Keep

Well, it’s that time again—time to start rolling out the New Year’s resolutions. Some of us will vow to eat less, exercise more, live in the moment, be
more grateful. You may even decide to bury the hatchet with the family member who makes you so crazy.

But what about your New Year’s business
resolutions?
This time of year is a great time to start making—
and keeping—business resolutions, too. But sadly,
like our personal goals, we often make them (year
after year) with sincere intent only to see them
quickly fall by the wayside, as we revert to (bad)
habits that we have vowed to break.
But what about the most successful people and
their resolutions? Have you noticed how the most
accomplished people just seem to identify
important things and consistently get them done?
Study successful people long enough and you start
to pick up on the resolutions they seem to
consistently make.
Here are ten of my favorites:

#1 Spend more time on the not-to-do list
Strategy is the art of sacrifice. That’s why you may
consider creating a larger clearing for what really
matters by first identifying, and then avoiding, what
matters the least. Your time is a treasure to be
invested. Creating a list of things that you are not
going to do, allows you to invest more of your
treasured time on the few things that matter the
most.

#2 Essential first, email second
What’s the first thing you do in the morning? For
many of us, it is looking at email. We wake up with
a renewed mind and spirit, ready to take on the
world, and then we immediately allow ourselves to
be distracted by an insignificant email. Instead,
wake up, take on the most important task of the
day, and then (and only then) hit the email.

#3 Resolve to think about “Who” instead of
“What”
Do you work for a “What” business or for a “Who” business? Successful companies run the risk of focusing too much on their current products and distributors thus—the “What”—losing sight of the constant and dramatically changing needs of their customer base. (The “Who.”) Insurance, pharma, health care, higher education often listen too much to their agents, doctors and professors. The real innovation starts with the end consumer.

#4 Resolve to find your purpose
As my friend Simon Sinek will tell you: People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. Starting a career, a company or any kind of journey that is based firmly on your purpose is foundational to success and happiness. If you don’t know your company’s purpose or even your own, finding one is the worthiest of resolutions.

#5 Resolve to support a cause
If you’re reading this, chances are you are one of the rare people who know how to start things. Fortunately, there are people like you who have already started causes that make the world better— they feed the hungry; they save the rain forest; they fight cancer; they do good things. There is virtually a cause for everyone, and contributing will make your year happier. Promise.

#6 Resolve to invent more choices
Here’s a secret that happy people know that I learned from my friend Dr. Dan Baker: You can’t feel grateful and fearful at the same time. And one certain way to become afraid is to feel trapped by any situation. The remedy is choice. The more choices you feel you have, the less trapped—and happier—you will feel. So this year, resolve to do a bit of brainstorming every time you feel unhappy.

#7 Resolve to find a Yin for your Yang
Walt Disney had Roy Disney, Steve Jobs had Steve Wozniak and Orville Wright had Wilbur Wright. Wherever there is great innovation, there is a Dreamer and an Operator; an Idea Monkey and a (Ring)leader. First, determine where your passions lie, then go find an equally passionate partner, then go change the world.

#8 Resolve to get outside your jar
You can’t read the label when you are sitting inside the jar. The sad irony of being an expert is that it keeps you from seeing possibility. After all, you know what works, what doesn’t, what you can afford, what’s been tried in the past. Instead of relying only on your expertise, learn how to find other experts solving similar challenges to the ones you are facing. Go ask them what you may be missing.

#9 Resolve to be the creator
What is the outcome you want? What stands in your way? How do you overcome these obstacles? These three simple questions will keep you from being victimized by any situation. Creators change the world. Victims just bitch about stuff.

#10 Plan vacations (now)
You have probably heard the saying, “Life is what
happens when you are not paying attention.” Unfortunately for many of us, we let this become true. Do yourself a favor and plan your vacations for the next year today. I promise you that the days around your vacation will fill in nicely. I also promise you that you’ll have something to look forward to and the life that happens during your vacations will be precious.

Happy New Year.

LOVE CONFESSION by Pst Nike Adeyemi

love confession

I am Love
Love is my nature
This is the nature of my Father God
Who indwells me, inhabits me, enriches me
And fill me up with Himself
He is shed abroad in my heart by the Holy Spirit
Not by my feelings, emotions or anything else
I am long suffering
I am patient and kind
I am not envious or boiled over with jealousy
I am not boastful of vainglorious
I do not display myself haughtily
I am not arrogant or inflated with pride
I am not touchy, fretful or resentful
I take no account of evil done to me and
I pay no attention to a suffer wrong
I do not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness
But I rejoice as righteousness and truth prevails
I face up boldly and courageously
To anything and everything that comes my way
I am ever ready to believe the best about every person
My hopes are fadeless under all circumstances and
I endure everything that without weekending
I never fail I am a love child of a love GodBorn of love into the love family
Love mercy and compassion flow out of me to others
I am a joint intercession with the Lord Jesus
An d I give myself wholly to intercession (prayer)
I am very conscious of the leading and the promptings of the Holy
Spirit and I respond positively to them
The gifts of the spirit are very much in manifestation in my life
The gift manifest themselves in me in love
I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus
And Christ is my righteousness
Therefore am as bold as the lion of the tribe of Judah
I am a winner by nature
And I win all the time
I do not know how to lose because
Greater is he in me than he that is in the world
I am above only, never beneath
I am born of God
And I overcome the world with all its system
The word of God is the final authority in my life
I live by it and I talk it all the time
The life and nature of God is put to work on my behalf
I prosper in all I do
Because I diligently day and night meditate in the word
I have supernatural good success
My body is the temple of the Holy Spirit
It has been bought with a price the blood of JesusWho bore away my sickness and diseases and by whose stripes I am healed
I therefore present my body as a living sacrifice to God for his glory
And I forbid any of the ravages of sin or Satan in Jesus name to
Play on my body
The agent of disease and death cannot come against my body
Because the greater one in me is constantly generating life into my body