Break Your Bad Habits in 6 Steps

Mmm, chocolate.

If you’ve got a few bad habits you’d like to break—and want to inspire your employees to do the same—follow these 6 steps for personal success.

Step 1: Understand how habits form.

Step 2: Know exactly why the new way is superior to the old way.

Step 3: Expect that your body will not want to change.

Step 4: Set trigger goals.

Step 5: Set improvement goals.

Step 6: Script your setbacks.

Learn how to implement these habit-breaking steps on OPEN Forum.

Keeping you and your staff inspired is crucial to the success and profitability of your business. One way to promote productive out-of-the-box thinking is by supporting artistic expression:

Encouraging your employees to engage in artistic endeavor—painting, drawing, writing, cartooning or even pottery-making—can get them to see your business’s challenges and issues in a new light. These activities can occur during work time or after hours, and can help bring new life to your business.

Read on for nine more ways to get the creative juices flowing at your company.

Keeping you and your staff inspired is crucial to the success and profitability of your business. One way to promote productive out-of-the-box thinking is by supporting artistic expression:

Encouraging your employees to engage in artistic endeavor—painting, drawing, writing, cartooning or even pottery-making—can get them to see your business’s challenges and issues in a new light. These activities can occur during work time or after hours, and can help bring new life to your business.

Read on for nine more ways to get the creative juices flowing at your company.

8 Common Traits All Great Leaders Have

1. Accepting. Self-actualized leaders accept themselves, as well as their employees, colleagues, vendors and customers, as they are rather than hoping for something different. 

2. Humble. Great leaders don’t need to announce their many attributes: it shows in their work, and the amount of respect they receive from everyone around them.

3. Willing to seek assistance. Self-aware leaders have no problem reaching out to their customers and clients or membership bases and asking questions that reveal their lack of knowledge or skills in certain areas.

Read on for five more attributes great leaders possess.

Australian-born designer Aimee Kestenberg went from a student on a limited visa to a well-respected and internationally known designer. She shared her story with us on OPEN Forum, and gave some great business advice as well:

How common is it today that designers actually make their own products, in addition to designing them?

A lot of designers aren’t taught how to construct accessories. It is one thing to be a talented designer, but I’ve found that it’s so important to also understand how pieces are made. Having an understanding of how to hand make accessories helps drastically in improving efficiency in the development process as well as effectively communicating. Knowledge is power, and the more you absorb, the stronger you will be as a businessperson.

Read more of Kestenberg’s story on OPEN Forum.

You don’t always have to have the most sophisticated security measures in place to keep hackers at bay. Sometimes, it’s the easiest programs or upgrades that can be the most effective. Here are five easy fixes that will protect your small business.

We can’t overstate how important visuals are in today’s business world: a minute of video collateral has the same value as 1.8 million words of text.
Learn how your business can easily and cheaply tap into the power of video on OPEN Forum.

We can’t overstate how important visuals are in today’s business world: a minute of video collateral has the same value as 1.8 million words of text.

Learn how your business can easily and cheaply tap into the power of video on OPEN Forum.

Everything You Need to Know About Online Copyright

Internet content isn’t all free, and not everything is yours for the taking just because you found it online. Get the legal facts about some common copyright myths:

Myth No. 1: It’s on the Internet, so anyone can use it.

Actually… This one is unwaveringly and unequivocally false,” writes OPEN Forum contributor Erika Napoletano. “Just because you find an image or blog post or article or video and you like it, you may not have permission to share it.”

Myth No. 2: There wasn’t a copyright notice on it, so it’s not copyrighted.

Actually… “By U.S. copyright law, copyright is granted to a content creator the moment an idea is fixed into any tangible form,” says Kandis Koustenis, an intellectual property attorney with Cloudigy Law.

Read on for three more commonly heard copyright myths and the truth behind them.

Why Time Awareness Is Important to Company Culture

Being “on time” can mean something different for every person you meet, based on where they’re from to their own personal preference. If you’re not careful, that difference can hurt your business and client relations, writes Alexandra Levit:

… It’s important to be conscious of … the “scheduling style” of your business and the partner businesses with which you work. The first step here is attention, then assimilation: Watch how people operate, learn what scheduling styles make them most productive, then adapt your operations and expectations accordingly. 

Read more on how to implement a time-sensitive culture on OPEN Forum.

Why This College Course May Be More Valuable Than MBAs

If you’re only focusing on the numbers, it may be time to expand your thinking. Understanding psychology’s role in your business can give you a definite edge.

“Industrial and organizational psychology, or I-O psychology, applies psychological theories to an organization,” says Sandra Powers, a human resources manager at LawyerReviews.com. By studying I-O psychology, you may be able to help improve employee behavior and attitudes through training programs, management systems and employee feedback.

Read more on how I-O psychology can improve your business on OPEN Forum.

"Disruption" is the name of the game when it comes to entrepreneurship these days, with companies like Airbnb and Uber changing the way everyone thinks about hotel rentals and car services respectively.

We reached out to a new crop of entrepreneurs who are redefining what’s cool and innovative for the rest of us. You can read their stories on OPEN Forum.