"Research done at the USC Center for Effective Organizations found that 82 percent of business leaders aren’t working at their ideal energy levels,” writes small-business consultant Rieva Lesonsky. “Sixty-one percent felt they were working below their best energy level, while 21 percent felt they were working above their ideal energy level.”
This may seem counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to manage your energy levels so you’re most effective is to leave well enough alone, Lesonsky writes:
Once you know your natural energy rhythms, try to honor them. If you experience a 3 p.m. slump every day, for example, trying to power through it will do more harm than good. You won’t be working efficiently, your results will be poor, and you’ll drain even more energy from your mind and body. Instead, during a slump time, try taking a quick walk, doing stretches in your office or even taking a power nap for 10 to 20 minutes.
Read on for six more ways to stay productive throughout your day.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Biz Stone, Twitter co-founder and haver of one of tech’s coolest names, noted last month at the small-business conference Sage Summit that the future of marketing is philanthropy, and that people are attracted to meaning these days. Small business consultant Barry Moltz wrote:
Stone suggests that when customers have a choice, they will more likely buy from companies that are philanthropic; and that successful companies are giving money to charitable organizations and then using their marketing funds to tell customers about their association with that cause. Companies find that their giving can go a long way by attracting free mentions on blogs and social media posts.
Read on for more on how companies are using philanthropy in their marketing strategy.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has been one of the hottest topics on the Internet over the past month, with videos of all sorts of people hoisting buckets of ice water over their heads and dousing themselves in the name of charity.
The challenge has also raised jaw-dropping amounts of money in a short period of time for ALS research. It’s reported that the ALS Foundation raised $10.3 million in a single day, thanks to the popularity of the challenge.
So how does something so simple become something so viral and raise awareness and funds?
1. A low barrier of entry. What do you need to make a challenge? A bucket, ice, water, a smartphone to capture the video, and two minutes of your time.
Too often attempts at virality fail because they’re too complicated or too expensive. The goal is to get as many people as possible involved, so barrier of entry to participate has to be low.
2. A touch of urgency. According to the rules of the Challenge, you have 24 hours to accept the challenge, or you “have” to pay the ALS Foundation $100. Putting a limited window of time ensures that people won’t put off the challenge.
3. Built in viral mechanism. The ALS Challenge is a bit different than most viral campaigns, because you’re publicly challenging three other friends to participate. Also, it’s not an invitation; it’s a dare. There’s a lot more energy behind someone publicly saying “I dare you!” instead of “Try this!”
Read on for three more components of viral campaigns on OPEN Forum.
An unexpected sign that people are feeling good about the economy? The fact that RV sales are back up (the sector posted its sixth straight season of sales increases, The Detroit News reported).
It seemed like just the right to share how some entrepreneurs are going truly mobile: running their businesses on the road and by sea, that is.
Flickr user: Larry & Ted Page