Your Job Is Changing

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I have had some recent conversations with people regarding changes in how employees should work. Some people advocate for sticking to the traditional 40-hour work week; you show up, do your work, go home, and get paid for your time. Others advocate for a results-only work environment, or ROWE. In ROWE you are tasked with getting a job done and you know what you will be paid to do the job, regardless of how long it takes. If you can get a week’s worth of work done in two days, you get an extra three days off; if it takes 7 days to complete the work, it’s still your responsibility to complete the work and provide the results.

Clearly, the work world is in transition. The Industrial Age introduced the 40-hour work week and we are now accustomed to it. Arguably, many jobs today still operate in this Industrial Age philosophy. However, we are seeing the change toward project-based jobs; more people are working as consultants today than ever before.

There is natural resistance to change; this is a normal human reaction. We tell ourselves, “I’m quite comfortable where I am. Don’t make me move somewhere else that might not be as comfortable.” So we keep our old, broken-down recliner because it is perfectly molded to our butt, not someone else’s. We treasure that old pair of well-worn jeans because they fit “just right.” And we continue to maintain that the 40-hour, M-F, 8-5 work week is the right way to earn an income. Continue reading

Verizon 2013 Data Breach Investigations Report

Verizon 2013 Data Breach Investigations ReportVerizon released the 2013 Data Breach Investigations Report yesterday. The contributing agencies have grown to 19, compared to 4 in the 2012 report. There is a lot of good information about network security breaches in this report for everybody. From the intro:

And from pubs to public agencies, mom-and-pops to multi-nationals, nobody was immune. As a result—perhaps agitated by ancient Mayan doomsday predictions—a growing segment of the security community adopted an “assume you’re breached” mentality. Continue reading

Gary Vaynerchuk–Doing Social Media Correctly

Gary Vaynerchuk is a very passionate man. He’s a passionate New York Jets fan (Go Bolts!) and he brings that same level of passion to his business. He understands how social media works, and how to utilize it successfully.

I watched this video a couple years ago, and recently came across it again and took the time to re-watch it. Whether you are in charge of your company’s social media, or you just personally participate in social media, this video is for you. If you have any contribution to the success of any organization, this video is for you.

What makes social media successful? Why do you engage with some brands and not others? How should a company properly use social media? Continue reading

Weird Contacts on my iPhone

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I have been using an iPhone for a couple years, but I only recently connected it to an Exchange server using ActiveSync. (My previous company used Lotus Notes for email, and their configuration required me to use IMAP to connect to my email; I also used a program called AweSync to sync my Lotus contacts and calendar with my Gmail account). I quickly noticed that my Suggested Contacts from Outlook were showing up in my iPhone contacts. It wasn’t the end of the world, but it was annoying. I didn’t really want those suggested contacts showing up on my iPhone; I would add the people to my Outlook Contacts if and when I needed to. Continue reading

How Spiceworks Saved My Bacon (and Earned Kudos From My Boss)

Download SpiceworksEvery once in a while you come across a product or service that you feel like you cannot live without. You might substitute something else, you might try a different flavor, you might buy another brand “just to try it.” And in the end, you go back to what works and makes your life easier.

For me, Spiceworks is one of those things that I cannot live without at work. Sure, I could spend tens-of-thousands of dollars for an “enterprise-class” help desk system, but in most cases that would just be spending money on something that is not needed. I would rather use that budget money on other things.

First, a little background about Spiceworks. I found it about 2-1/2 years ago when I was looking for a low cost help desk system at a previous company. When I started that job, there was no request tracking in IT. Most times, a sticky note would be put on the side of someone’s monitor or the request would be written down in a notebook. Either way, there was about a 50/50 chance that the note would be lost or overlooked, causing a great deal of frustration from others in the company toward the IT department. Continue reading

Google’s tribute to 2012

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2012Google published their compilation of search trends for 2012, called Zeitgeist. They served 1.2 trillion searches in 146 languages. Additionally, they created a short video, posted below.

It’s hard to believe that so much happened in 2012; so much seems like so long ago. Felix Baumgartner’s historic jump from 128,000 feet, Gangnam Style, the London Olympics, and Hurricane Sandy all took place within the last 12 months.

And the video shows us some notable people we lost during 2012, from Neil Armstrong, to Andy Griffith, to Mike Wallace.

To quote Google at the end of the video, “Search on.” Continue reading

RIP Zig Ziglar

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Zig Ziglar passed away recently, and the world lost a great man. He primarily focused on improving sales techniques, but he had some wisdom for everybody. His down-home, folksy style made him entertaining to listen to, and it helped drive his points home.

Ziglar had a lot to say about deliberately setting goals, and the impact the goals would have on the outcome. I found a video online, broken into 3 parts, and want to share it here. Wise words for those who want to get something accomplished. Continue reading

Add an MP3 Audiobook to iTunes

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Audiobooks are a great way to make use of time that might otherwise be spent on just a single event. For example, a lot of people listen to audiobooks during their commute or workout. Time that is already being spent doing one task (driving, working out, etc.), and is conducive to listening to music, is the perfect time to listen to an audiobook.

When I started listening to audiobooks, a friend told me that many public libraries allow you to download audiobooks and listen to them on an iPod. I was already using an iPod to listen to music and podcasts, so I was interested in finding a way to also add the audiobooks. If the audiobook is in MP3 format, it’s pretty easy. Not all audiobooks are available in MP3 format, but more and more seem to be available all the time.

The steps below will help you get those MP3 audiobooks onto an iPod, iPhone, or an iPad. If the audiobook is not available as an MP3 file, these steps will not work for you. However, the libraries often have special software to put those other file formats on your Apple device and let you listen to the audiobooks.

These instructions are not intended to subvert any copyright laws or restrictions. Be sure to follow all the provisions of your library’s MP3 audiobook checkout. Continue reading