Millennial Workforce: the Wind of Change Shifting the Workplace Design

Baby boomers are no longer the largest segment of the working population. Now, they are making way to another group determined to change the face of the business world – the millennials. They move into leadership positions, flock to innovative startups, and endorse a different work philosophy.

You could say that they possess a distinctive outlook of what they expect from the career and have distinctive priorities in life. In fact, they seek meaningful employment experience, not just a satisfying paycheck at the end of the month.

The powers that be

man computer

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The rules that used to be set in stone are now perceived as something that stands in the way of collaboration and transparency. Office design of today reflects the aspiration for dismantling old corporate hierarchies and assembling a horizontally-aligned workspace. Millennials endorse a democratic approach and crave to immerse in a work environment which offers a flat organizational structure.

Larger, more rigid companies have more trouble adapting to these developments or are simply unwilling to “delayer” their business framework. Thus, it comes as a no surprise that the millennials lean towards dynamic start-ups and small businesses.

Success by design

office

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The aforementioned principles serve as centerpieces of the corporate culture and ethics. Hence, office design is right at the core of new engagement and retention policies. It encompasses everything from ergonomic chairs and customizable desks to architectural features and photovoltaic windows. Personalized, multi-purpose, and flexible design solutions are gaining traction.

Also, an open-office plan is millennials’ darling, a way to bring down the obstacles to interaction and promote visibility. These young professionals are more partial to working in teams, not isolated in cubicles. In order to bring vigor to the workplace, they must be treated with an uplifting environment.

Free flow

Millennials want their bosses to encourage free access to meetings and information. What is more, autonomy and freedom in handling day-to-day obligations are in the spotlight. Instead of walls, they rather see dividers and floor-to-ceiling glass installations as an appropriate separating feature. They advocate closeness, information sharing, and accountability across the board.

Hence, companies should try to make the entirety of space available to workers. Some of them might like to carry out meeting in a lounge area, and others prefer to work in a reception room. In general, when they are presented with different methods of accomplishing assignments, and allowed to multitask, millennials are at their best.

Digital trends

Furthermore, millennials can be considered to be digital natives born with a gadget in hand. Even those who are not particularly tech-savvy are certainly tech-dependant. They want to be empowered by technology, a force which is expected to cut through bureaucratic levels. So, the company aspiring to harness the potential of a millennial workforce must invest in top-of-the-line computers.

office chair

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Apart from that, it should mount lightning-fast internet capacity, employ digital communication tools, and integrate cutting-edge tech in other amenities.  Another item high on the list of priorities is comfort, a quality which can be summoned with high-quality office furniture and versatile workstations. Such well-designed spaces also offer them a chance to rewind and keep up the good work.

Environmental concerns

A state-of-the-art office does wonders for worker’s motivation and productivity, and it also helps companies attract and retain top talent. When an office becomes more than just a place for performing tedious tasks, employees are inclined to display peak performance and unleash their creativity. Now, millennials do care for the company’s bottom line, but this is not something that preoccupies them, unlike community and environmental concerns.

Namely, apart from the tech-fueled teamwork, millennials desire environment-friendly policies and practical solutions. That is why forward-thinking enterprises take advantage of energy-saving office appliances, renewable energy sources, long-lasting LED lighting, and other means of lowering the carbon footprint.

Millennial revolution

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Millennials do not derive their strength from numbers, but the power of belief. The profit is no longer the sole lodestar of the business world because people and the natural habitat come into focus. This authentic group brought a striking change in the corporate world, and already poses an invaluable asset.

The traditional top-down corporate structure is dead, and this shows in office design, as well as engagement and retention policies. As a result, companies with traditional hierarchy heavily ingrained in their office layout struggle to hire millennials and stay ahead of the curve.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/marcusjensen/millennial-workforce-the-wind-of-change-shifting-the-workplace-design/

7‭ ‬Steps For Servicing And Maintaining Your Car‭

When it comes to cars,for the most part people focus too much on acquiring the perfect vehicle and not enough on maintaining it once the purchase has been completed.That can partly be explained by the complexity of modern cars,which can have as many as75,000different parts.But many people also lack the knowledge to perform even the most basic maintenance tasks,which can leave the car vulnerable to costly and possibly even dangerous malfunctions.So take the time to familiarize yourself with the following seven steps,all of which are instrumental forkeeping your car in good shape over the long run:

1.Tires

Begin your car check-up by inspecting its tires using a regular tire gauge.All four of them should be inflated to the manufacturer’s specified pressure.What’s more,they shouldn’t have any indicators of tread wear.Tires that feature such indicators are much more likely to break,so take steps to replace them when they become worn beyond acceptable limits.In cases when such an accident does happen,make sure you have a spare tire in the trunk of your car at all times.

2.Oil

Oil is the lifeblood of your car,so you’ll definitely need to keep an eye on it on a regular basis.A mechanic can show you how to check your oil properly,but as a rule of thumb it generally needs to be replaced every5000kilometres or so.Some manufacturers may claim thresholds way higher than that,but it’s always better to prioritize your engine’s reliability and efficiency above all and have your oil changed before it starts getting all black and gritty.

3.Fluids

Aside from oil,there are plenty of other fluids that need to be in good condition in order for the car to be considered fully operational.Things like transmission fluid,brake fluid and coolant all have to be verified from time to time.Ask a professional how to check these things and then proceed to do so at least once per week.

4.Brakes

There is perhaps no single more important car part than your vehicle’s brakes,which is why they should to be checked as often as possible.Modern cars are equipped with braking systems that need to be replaced from time to time in order to maintain maximum efficiency,so make sure you take your vehicle to the car service for this most important check-up.

5.Lights

Despite their apparent simplicity,car lights are essential for safe driving.Ask a friend to assist you in making sure that all lights function correctly,including taillights,headlights,brake lights and turn signals.Pay special attention to their tilt,as lights should always be pointing high enough to allow you to see the road,but not too high so as to distract oncoming vehicles.

6.Windows and windshield wipers

More than just a cosmetic adornment,windows can be instrumental in keeping you safe while on the road.To give just one example,a poorly placed windshield crack can make it that much more difficult to see the cars in your immediate vicinity,which can obviously hamper your decision-making process while driving.Additionally,worn windshield wipers do a much poorer job of wiping out water or snow,and should be replaced once a year before the start of the rainy season.

7.The interior

Finally,no car check-up would be complete without a thorough inspection of the vehicle’s interior.Everything from the car’s dashboard to its seats should be kept as spotless as possible,especially if you intend on selling the vehicle at a later date.All the buttons on the dashboard should be operational,while the air conditioning system needs to be checked on a regular basis to ensure that it is working properly.

In conclusion,checking all the aforementioned items on a regular basis will do much to protect your car against the wear and tear that inevitably comes with the passage of time.Of course,it also helps to take your vehicle to a licensed auto-mechanic at least once per year,someone who can perform more advanced tests to see if your car is running smoothly.Keep in mind that most freshly purchased cars have warranties that cover repairs for a certain amount of time,and that reputable providers such as Zooper Carsoffer great deals on servicing even after your warranty expires.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/twitter-epicninjadaboss/7%e2%80%ad-%e2%80%acsteps-for-servicing-and-maintaining-your-car%e2%80%ad/

How to Improve Your Team’s Collaboration

A vast majority of businesses are based on teamwork, i.e. people working together towards achieving the same goal. A number of team members simply engaging in the same task isn’t enough, however. Successful teamwork includes planning, as well as cooperation. Optimizing each person’s skills is the proper way to engage in this group effort, but businesses often overlook it, which leads to a decreased efficiency. Here are some ideas on how to improve your team’s collaboration.

Expectations

Setting expectations at the very beginning is essential for a fruitful collaboration with your team. Everyone needs to be familiarized with their exact role, as well as the deadlines. Additionally, they need to know the exact part of a particular project they are in charge of and where to find the support and resources. Delivering all this to employees is the leader’s job – connecting with team’s goals and devising a strategic plan, as it is the backbone of every company. Individual expectations should be aligned with the shared expectations of the team. Program metrics and timelines should also be established, and progress updates are to be shared in order to make everyone included in the project know when things are accomplished, and of the progress in general.

Inspire

The best way for a team to achieve the highest level of efficiency is by being motivated. Motivation comes from actually loving what you do and caring about the ongoing project. A team leader needs to inspire and bring in energy into a conference room or conversation, thus making every team member feel valued and respected. A job well done should be sincerely appreciated and the entire team notified of each individual success. This will encourage everyone to focus on achieving their goals, which will boost collaboration and, hence result in a successful project completion.

Use Technology

man coffee tablet

Modern ways of doing business have forever been changed by numerous technological advancements. Using a cloud-based platform goes without saying, but what are the reasons behind this? Well, apart from providing an easy-to-use virtual environment for sharing files, utilizing cloud services means exercising as much efficiency in a long-distance team communication as possible. For example, instead of delivering files via email to every team member individually, uploading them to a cloud platform makes everything perpetually available in one secure place. Additionally, using project management software shouldn’t be overlooked, as these applications help boost cooperation.

Keep an Open Mind

Brilliant ideas often come from the unexpected, and you never know what they might bring to the table – every great team leader knows this. In addition to this, however, open-mindedness helps create an atmosphere of trust in a team – everyone gets their say and each idea is treated equally; there should be no place for favoritism, since you are working with a team, not towards grooming a single employee. Nevertheless, this practice works both ways – in terms of ideas and in terms of critique. In a comfortable working environment, employees will have no problem voicing concerns and making suggestions. Therefore, prepare yourself for new ideas, as well as thoughtful critique. You are bound to empower your entire team and contribute to faster problem-solving, greater trust, healthier teamwork and improved performance, in general.

Improving your team’s collaboration is essential for making things work within a business. Each team member will have an idea and picking the good ones isn’t entirely on you, as a leader. Each team member should be comfortable with giving their suggestions and delivering critique to the existing ones. Your entire team is responsible for your project’s success.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/marcusjensen/how-to-improve-your-teams-collaboration/

The trickle-down effect: how politics influence small businesses

Owning a small business in this day and age requires a certain amount of courage, as political landscapes grow ever more unpredictable. Politics, it should be noted, affect all businesses, regardless of size, but the smaller ones are most susceptible to being swept by the tide of trends and restrictions. To that end, let’s try and identify the main ways in which politics interact with the interests of small business owners worldwide:

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1. Direct policies

Governments tend to enact a variety of laws in their attempts to boost the economy. Everything from small business grants to tax breaks and various other programs are destined to incentivize entrepreneurs and lead to the creation of prosperous businesses that can increase the country’s bottom line. Nevertheless, certain policies can be rather misguided, while others have unforeseen consequences that can actually lead to financial failure for small operations. For instance, raising the minimum wage may lead to happier workers, but it can cripple companies that are barely getting by as it is.

2. Indirect policies

Not all the measures enacted by a government are intended to have an influence on small businesses, but many of them still do by sheer virtue of their impact. To give just one example, stricter regulations in the field of banking can lead to increased security in the financial sector, an idea that’s generally regarded as a good after the crisis of the late 2000s. But these kinds of regulations may also lead to things like higher interest rates and an increased difficulty in securing small business loans, two things that can have an adverse effect on economic growth if left unchecked.

3. Macropolitical factors

With isolationist policies for the most part being a thing of the past in today’s globalized world, countries seem to have realized that they cannot make it on their own. Every nation across the planet has to rely on trade agreements and various types of cooperative arrangements in order to get by. That’s why the economic ecosystem of any nation is strongly tied to the conditions of the world at large. A period of political tension can easily translate into economic turbulence, as investors will be more reluctant to funnel their money when faced with insecure circumstances. Likewise, a strong bond between two or more countries can result in greater economic prosperity for all involved. One only needs to take a look at the UK, which developed exponentially as a member of the European Union, only to face its prospects for further growth threatened under the weight of a possible exit from the union.

In conclusion, it’s clear to see how small businesses are influenced by various political factors and trends. While it may be impossible to accurately predict all the changes that shape the world in this regard, small business owners can take steps towards consolidating their businesses by engaging in solid practices and having a fallback plan for several scenarios. Life is full of surprises, both good and bad, but when it comes to business it’s always wise to prepare for the worst but hope for the best.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/michaelsanduso/the-trickle-down-effect-how-politics-influence-small-businesses/

“Accidents Can Happen”. Now Who Should Pay for Your Troubles?

An accident happened involving you or someone you care personal-injury-from-wet-floorabout. Yes, it’s true, accidents do happen, and sorry to hear that you’ve been a victim of one. You may probably feel helpless, but don’t despair, you can put things to action and make a negligent person or institution compensate you for your troubles. So the question now is, when could you seek legal assistance after an accident? And where could you get the best legal assistance? Read on below to find out…

Personal Injury

Personal Injury covers a wide spectrum of injuries that affect a human being. But it’s basically a result of negligence by a person, institution or company. If you were shopping at a mall or grocery store and slipped on the floor due to the lack of precautionary measures such as a “wet floor sign” or proper non-slip matting, then the mall or grocery store could be held responsible for your injury. Another example of personal injury is when a person’s misdemeanor or irresponsibility is to blame for an accident on which you were involved.

Vehicular Accident

Although vehicular accidents still fall under the Personal Injury category, the fact that it’s the most common type of Physical Injury, makes it one important subject to highlight. Around 40,000 deaths in United States are caused by auto accidents and over millions yearly are injured due to irresponsible and reckless driving.

                                                                                                            Medical Malpractice

There are a lot of cases of Medical Malpractice that had been brought to court in which hospitals and medical practitioners had been held liable for a number of reasons. Wrong diagnosis and treatment could be grounds for Medical Malpractice. Wrongful death could also be another reason to file a case against a doctor, nurse or hospital administration. If you believe that you have not been treated by a medical practitioner right which may have caused either complications or worsening of your condition, seek legal advice right away to see your options in filing a case against the person or hospital.

Work-related Accidentsconstruction-accident

Yes, you may be harmed even in the workplace. And it is your employer’s duty to ensure that your work environment is safe for all employees. This is especially the utmost consideration should you have a job that already puts you at risk on the get-go such as in construction. But even while you hold a job working in a hazardous work environment doesn’t make it acceptable for you to obtain injuries or get into an accident. If you believe that the company you work for should have taken counter measures to lessen or even eliminated the odds of you or anyone you work with from getting hurt, then you can definitely take them to court.

Environmental Accidents

Catastrophes and tragedy could strike any one of us unknowingly. Fifteen years after 9/11 and people could still feel the horror and effects of what happened that day.  Even the direst of tragedies that could have never been helped should be controlled or acted upon accordingly to avoid further damage to society. Explosions, chemical leaks and collapsed buildings could all cause danger to your health, with dire health effects that may manifest itself immediately or over a period of time. If you work or live in an area that might be contaminated with harmful chemicals, seek medical and legal help right away.

police-crimeCivil Rights

The United States Constitution protects the equal rights among Americans through the Civil Rights. Unfortunately, there are still plenty of people who fall victim to civil rights violations on a daily basis and have probably shrugged off the idea of acting upon it. The problem is, people who simply give in to being treated unjustly only makes matters worse. So if an employer or a uniformed officer of the law has treated you unjustly, do not hesitate to seek the justice you deserve.

Now who should pay for your troubles?

If you are a victim of an accident not listed above and believe that you deserve to receive necessary compensation. Or just want someone take responsibility for the injury you’ve obtained, do not let those responsible off the hook. If you are holding back due to the expenses you could incur or the thought of yet another distress; remember this: if it could happen to you, it could happen to anyone else. And for another person, it could mean life and death. Your action could save lives that otherwise may fall unto the same trap, maybe even worse. So decide to act upon it not just for you but for the rest of society. Seek legal assistance right away to discuss your options in filing charges or obtaining restitution.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/leurypichardo/accidents-can-happen-now-who-should-pay-for-your-troubles/

3 Infuriating Issues You’ll Have to Face as a Remote Worker

Being a remote worker definitely has its ups and downs. There are a number of benefits of working remotely, such as being able to schedule your tasks throughout the day without anyone asking you why you are leaving the office early, as well as not being exposed to the stress of a long commute, for instance. You can pack your things and go on a three-month vacation, since all you need for work is your laptop.

However, working remotely is far from perfect. It’s not all rainbows and butterflies, because there are some challenges that both you and the business organization you work for have to face, and those challenges can sometimes be tough to handle on both sides.

Nevertheless, if you are a remote worker, you need to learn how to overcome every obstacle coming your way in order to be as productive and efficient as possible. Managing to do that will help you become an important asset to the company you work for, and contribute to its lasting success. Take a look at the common issues every remote worker has to face and learn how to address them in order to be a successful employee.

The Feeling of Isolation

 

When you’re working in an office, you can feel great even if you are drowning in work, because you are surrounded with people. You have your colleagues with whom you spend a lot of your time, especially when you are working together on some big team projects, and you need to collaborate with them in order to get the job done.

When you’re working from home, loneliness sets in after a while and you can feel frustrated and isolated. There is an obvious lack of social interaction and you don’t have the luxury of building relationships and creating a social life around your work friends.

More often than not, this problem can reflect on your work and make you a bit disengaged, but it’s nothing that cannot be fixed. Make a habit of collaborating and communicating with your colleagues as much as possible via email or IMs and you will feel as if you’re actually sitting next to each other at the office. It can really be a game changer.

Of course, make sure you meet up with your local friends whenever you have free time, as that is certain to recharge your batteries and help you effectively complete every new work project.

Completing Your Projects in a World Full of Distractions

 

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Staying focused and productive when working from home can be pretty tough. It can be really stressful sometimes, since there is always something that needs to be done around the house; from your laundry and everyday house chores to your car’s oil changing and a number of other distractions that prevent you from getting your work done on time, which can be especially challenging if you have a family and little kids running around.

How to get your work done effectively and manage to keep your sanity along the way? You need to let your family and friends know that you are unavailable during your work hours. This means no running errands, no never-ending phone calls or any other type of distraction that can make you put your work aside.

Create a schedule and stick to it as if you were in an actual office. If music doesn’t distract you, the best solution to your problem would be to put on your headphones, unplug from the world around you and focus only on the work in front of you. That will certainly help you relax and complete all of your assignments without missing any deadline.

Collaborating and Communicating Gets Hard

Side view of happy business woman on sofa using laptop and headset at home

There is instant messaging and there are emails, but the best possible solution would be the adoption of videoconferencing. Implementing videoconferencing can lead to much better communication and each and every team member can collaborate on various projects more easily.

The most efficient system to implement would be to schedule every video conference call, so that every employee within the company can be available for the virtual meeting. That way, everyone can be updated on every project and no one will have troubles keeping up. If your company has not yet harnessed the power of videoconferencing, you should definitely bring it up at your next meeting, since it will certainly improve the entire organization.

Final Words

One is definitely the loneliest number but, if you manage to stay on the same page with your team and develop an effective communication with them, you can be sure no work mission will be impossible and you will become a dream team that will accomplish its every task with flying colors.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/vladzivanovic/3-infuriating-issues-youll-have-to-face-as-a-remote-worker/

Top Tips for Students to Stand Out in Lecture Classes

You walk up to that auditorium on the first day of classes and look around the room — 200 students are filing in and grabbing the many seats available. Everyone around you likely has the same thought, “How am I ever going to stand out among all of these other students?”

It’s no secret that lectures can be extremely daunting. Whether the class has 50, 100, or 400 students, standing out and being known by your professors is very beneficial. You never know when you may need that extra bit of help or even a few extra points at the end of the semester to turn that A- into an A. Follow this advice to help ensure you stand out from the crowd:

Introduce yourself
Taking time to introduce yourself and have a genuine conversation with your professor is a great way to stand out from the sea of potentially hundreds of students your teacher sees. But even if you have a smaller class of 30 students, for example, this tip still applies. Your professor will notice that extra effort you made along the way, as easy as simply introducing yourself may seem. It pays off to have had even that very small personal interaction.

Arrive early
It’s not shocking to hear that getting to class on time is essential in school. But if your class begins at 2:00 p.m., you may want to aim closer to 1:50 p.m. as your arrival time, as it’s recommended to show up at least a few minutes early to make sure you can get seated and prepared for the lecture. Flinging open the doors 10 minutes into a lecture is a great way to get some attention — but not in a good way! By being timely, your professor will likely take note and be appreciative. Moreover, you can always take advantage of those extra few minutes to say hello to your professor and even ask any thoughtful questions you may have about the class material.

Act professional
Put down your phone and leave excessive side chats at the front door. School is a time to learn and you should treat it as such. Approach your lecture class as you would a job — be respectful, do not get distracted, and follow the deadlines and policies set by your teacher. If you take this approach in school, and particularly go that extra mile, you are more likely to stand out from the crowd and may even land yourself future job or internship opportunities because of your rapport with that professor. After all, instructors tend to have important connections!

Answer questions
If your professor is one to pose questions or encourage open discussion in the lecture, always make the effort to put your hand in the air and contribute something valuable to the discussion. Not only will this allow your professor to get to know and understand your thought process, but it will also aid in making your lecture experience so much better. Interacting with others and the class material are great ways to learn and make sure the topics stick in your brain for the long term. It can also help break down any nerves or barriers you have about speaking in front of large groups!

Attend office hours
Many professors offer office hours outside the classroom for students to come in and ask questions, discuss the coursework, and even just chat with the professor. Unfortunately, many students overlook this valuable time to connect with their professor; do not be that student! Instead, take advantage of the opportunity to get to know the person who is in charge of your class, the tests, and ultimately, your final grade. Do not be that student who only shows up to the final office hour of the year, pleading for extra points because you fell short of that solid B.
Jenny Modlisz is a contributing writer for Varsity Tutors, a live learning platform that connects students with personalized instruction to accelerate academic achievement.

from Feedster http://www.feedster.com/blog/varsitytutors/top-tips-for-students-to-stand-out-in-lecture-classes/