How to turn a Business Template into a resume

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Young professionals, with an entrepreneurial mindset, like us, should take advantage of traditional business management tools as tactics in our career planning strategy. I believe professionals should start implementing a “business management” framework to assess their career goals and define objectives with one clear end in mind: a tailored resume that highlights your top talent potential.

How to put together a resume that reads as a business plan?

The writing real estate that your resume provides should be well utilized to communicate your authentic and consistent message. The first step is to think of yourself as a start-up or business venture, rather than another employee in the bunch, and charge your resume with an inspiring vision.

In this article, I will go over some sections of a basic business plan and the ways to implement them to give an innovative twist to your resume writing process.

A Business Plan’s Cover Page Becomes Your Cover Letter.

The first section of a business plan is the cover page, which includes the business’ contact information. For you, this is the crafted message, with specific and updated contact details, you send along with your resume. No email should be sent without a proper introductory message to grab the recruiter’s attention. When writing this message think about your target audience (whom are you speaking to?) as well as your marketing plan (how do you want to promote yourself?) In 2-3 short paragraphs establish consistency and credibility, while picking the reader’s interest.

A Business Plan’s Competitive Analysis Becomes Your Resume Objectives.

Your competitive advantage is the unique value you offer to the organization or team. This includes knowledge, skills and perspectives. If you don’t state this yourself, others may fill-in the gaps. Brag about yourself a little. Which competencies make you the best candidate for that position and an asset to their teams? Remember to be creative and highlight your personality. Be brief and to the point (The interview will be the time to elaborate). Mainly, don’t shy away from your achievements, but talk about them in a humble, honest way.

A Business Plan’s Company Overview Makes up Your Resume Education and Experiences.

At which places have you worked at? What is your professional background? What degrees or certification have you received? What have been your major personal and professional accomplishments so far? The answers to these questions will be introduce to your resume as the list of your formal education and continuing education efforts, as well as past and current positions.

A Business Plan’s Executive Summary Bulks up Your Education and Experience.

What is it that you can provide in terms of knowledge and expertise? What innovative ideas do you bring to the table? What will make your professional journey successful in the long run and how would you impact your organization and team? By thinking about and answering these questions as you write your resume you’d be preparing yourself for the “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” scenario. A great strategy is to focus on the elements that must be there in the future in order for you to be fulfilled. Use the executive summary perspective to include your participation in initiatives and projects, and the results you helped generate. This is similar to the section above, however in this case you assign projects to individual positions and highlight results. Your main objective should be consistency.

What other sections of a business plan could help guide your interview and networking efforts?

The business plan sections below will help you gather and create value that attracts and connects you with your industry; peers, colleagues and influencers.

Industry Analysis.

You must showcase knowledge of your field or the industry you want to grow you career toward. Get familiar with relevant information and updates about your industry. Use the information you gather and create to add value to your online profiles and face to face conversations with colleagues. Current or Prospective employers will take notice.

Customer Analysis.

Assess who your target audience is; a specific group of influencers within your industry, prospective employers or colleagues, and organization or non-profit. Also, identify problems they currently face and strategies to solve them. This will prepare you for an interview or presentation. It would also help you decide if the field is the right fit and what you may want to contribute.

Taking the time to implement a business plan template to write your resume gives you an opportunity to assess and evaluate your goals and clarify your vision. I encourage you to think strategically about your career.

Take action now! Start developing your new and improved resume! Want some feedback? Send me a copy for a peer to peer assessment!

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Your Hidden Potential- Unleash Your Super Hero!

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As I worked every day towards becoming a Marketing expert I used to always ask myself this question, will I be able to grow or generate profits in today’s competitive market? This often resulted in various thoughts, until I found the answer is very simple…

Yes! It is possible to grow and generate profit in a competitive market, but first it is key to understand how critical it is that you unleash your hidden potential.

So…how do you define hidden potential?

If you look for it in a dictionary you will find the below definition or something very similar:
potential

Adj.

1. Capable of being but not yet in existence; latent: a potential problem.

2. Having possibility, capability, or power.

3. Grammar Of, relating to, or being a verbal construction with auxiliaries such as may or can; for example, it may snow.

N.

1. The inherent ability or capacity for growth, development, or coming into being.

2. Something possessing the capacity for growth or development.

To unleash your potential has to be a part of your development as professional in any area you decide to grow. When I huddle with my team, I like to use the phrase “find your spark”, this means you need look inside yourself and find what your motivation is, what drives your interest.

Unleashing your hidden potential will allow you to grow into the next level. Below you will find a few tips and recommendations for you to be able to identify your potential and apply it to becoming successful.

Think about Superman, Spider man, Batman and Iron Man? Think about what all of them have in common. It is simple, each one of them had a defying moment in their lives, an event that drove them to change. They all took this event and used it to create goals and objectives, this helped to be the catalyst, the key to unlock their true superhero potential.
Now let me ask you…

have you had a defying moment at work? I know I have, one of my leaders approached me with all honesty and told me what was expected from me and where I was from those expectations…honestly I was far away from even aspiring to fulfill my desired state. After complaining and getting angry I realized that all the NEGATIVE and POSITIVE reactions (cause/effect) were my decision.

Ask yourself the following questions:

A) Are your strategies & priorities aligned? – I wasn’t working on the right track, I had no objectives to follow or if I had them they were not SMART.

B) What are you opportunities, Strengths, Weaknesses and Threats – Have I being honest with myself? Have I recognize my skills and attributes?

C) Can you sell or will you sell? – There is a clear difference between feeling capable of doing something or really doing it

There are only two choices, you either DO it or DON’T. After hours of analysis and frustration I saw a SPARK that helped me visualize my needs and improvements, I saw a path that took me to 7 keys/steps to find my inner power.

1. Identify Your “Mutant” Power

Wolverine has claws; Gambit has mental powers; and you have (fill in the blank). All of us have a special powers (a.k.a. talents, skills), but not all of us have identified them just yet. The fastest way to identify yours is to be on the lookout for activities that come easy to you but are hard for others. We tend to take our unique gifts for granted because we assume everyone does what we can do.

2. Take Responsibility for Your Gifts

Winston Churchill said, “Responsibility is the price of greatness.” That means you need to own who you are and what you do. Your talents come with responsibility, so it’s your duty to commit to developing them and actually using them.

You must choose to Step Up!

3. Exercise Your Greatness

I never would have achieved my goal of being a leader without properly exercising my unique talents, as Greatness is a muscle, and muscles need to be exercised. Take every opportunity to put your personal greatness to work. Your mantra should be “No job is too small.” The more you see your powers in action, the more confidence you’ll gain and the more opportunities will come your way.

4. Prepare to Meet Some Adversaries

Every superhero has a cast of villains to fight. So don’t expect your experience to be any different. But don’t worry, you won’t be chased by anyone that can fly or shoot fire. Your adversaries will be negative people, procrastination, and fear.

I don’t know why this is, but we tend to fear our own potential. So if you begin feeling afraid of where your growth might take you, just anchor those fears by reminding yourself that unlocking a better you will benefit you and your life.

Also be prepared for people that are intimidated with your growth. Most people fear change, so don’t be surprised if you begin attracting naysayers. But don’t worry; your success will also inspire others as well, so stay focused on those people instead.

5. Stay Grounded

When superman wasn’t saving people, he was a reporter at The Daily Planet. This kept him grounded (no pun intended) and in touch with the very people he was saving.

This is important because our lives need to be filled with a variety of roles. We can’t be just ONE thing and lose sight of the other roles we need to play. We can’t just be a hero; we also need to remember our place as parents, mentors and employees.

6. Learn to Trust Your Gut- It’s all about instinct – SPIDER SENSE

If you’d like to work with one of the best coaches in the world, look in a mirror.

Your intuition can be a powerful ally, but only if you learn to trust it. I’m sure there have been plenty of moments when your gut went completely against logic, but you ended up being right. Can you remember a moment like that?

That’s why I’m saying, “Learn to trust yourself.”

7. Start Today

Each day you’re presented with a choice. You can either keep your greatness hidden under a pile of fears, regrets, and excuses, or you can let it out. So the best way to begin unlocking inner greatness is to make a conscious choice to live out the rest of today, with the best you.

Why Your Parents’ Job-Seeking Advice is Probably Terrible

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Your parents mean well, they really do. They give you heartfelt advice about finding (and keeping) a job because they want you to succeed. They want to see you thriving at a job. They really, really want you to move out of their basement!

Unfortunately, your parents’ job seeking advice is probably terrible. Here’s why:

Your Parents Came From a More Civil Time

When your parents were looking for a job back in the 1920s (or something) people were a kinder, gentler breed. No one would have dreamed of not replying to a job applicant and anything less than a handshake and a drink offer at a first meeting was considered rude. In today’s job market you’re likely to be rudely brushed off or worse, ignored, dozens if not hundreds of times before you find a job so you’ve got to augment your searching techniques with that in mind. Your parents still think you should send out paper resumes on really thick cloth paper. In the mail.

Job Descriptions Were Less Specific When Your Parents Job-Hunted

Back in the day, your dad would have looked for a job based on the pay, the proximity to his house, and maybe the hours. That’s it. Nowadays jobs aren’t so cookie cutter – one person’s 80 hour a week accounting gig is someone else’s part-time financial consulting work. If your parents tell you to stick to Advertising jobs because that’s what your degree is in you may be missing opportunities in tangentially related industries like Digital Marketing or even Social Management.

They Think You Can “Knock on Doors” Until You Find a Job

(Facepalm) Why do people keep using this expression? Not only are there very few actual doors to knock on anymore since businesses are increasingly digitally-based and workers are logging in remotely, the odds are if you show up somewhere without an appointment you’re going to be turned away. Few employers will appreciate the tenacity of someone popping up all bushy-tailed with resume in hand. In fact, they’re more likely to think you don’t respect their time or the HR department’s process and be turned off.

Your Parents’ Found a Job and “Worked Their Way Up”

That’s just not how things work anymore. The average length a millennial keeps a job is about one-third as long as their parents did and this kind of job hopping is the new norm. Your parents may encourage you to keep looking until you can find a company or a position you want to stay with long term but in reality, sometimes you just need to take the job that’s good enough for right now. That is, unless they’re paying all your bills in which case, keep looking.

They Don’t Understand that Electronic Correspondence is How Things Work Now

Was your mom appalled when you told her you sent a thank you email to the person who interviewed you last week? Did she scramble to find some letter pressed stationery you could use to immediately correct the error? Your parents were looking for jobs long before the Internet even existed which means they likely place way too much emphasis on phone calls, hard-copies, and phone books. In today’s competitive job-searching market most companies only want to deal with you digitally and larger businesses literally don’t offer another way at all. Respect that.

Though your parents most definitely think they know what they’re talking about (“I worked my way up at that company for 45 years, son!”) they probably are more than a little off base. Don’t be rude when the offer advice, but know that you’re a well-versed, fully capable job seeker on your own and be confident in that

How To Impress Your Boss

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When I was a university student who fervently anticipated what we all called “the real world,” I devoured plenty of articles that dished out advice on navigating the interview process, getting along with coworkers and, most importantly, being positively regarded by the boss. Common advice for impressing superiors included “dress for success”, “show up on time”, “be positive” and simply “be really good at whatever you do.” It’s been a few years since I entered the workforce and, looking back, I can confidently say that such guidance barely scratches the surface. As someone who has risen from an entry-level position to management, there are certain lesser-known suggestions I think every young professional should know when trying to impress their superiors.

1) Be a leader within the office

How can you be a leader on a team if you’re not in charge? The most liked and respected leaders are individuals who empowered those around them, a concept that you can start implementing even as an intern. Is the person in the next cubicle over struggling to grasp a task that comes easily to you? Instead of letting him or her flounder in order to make yourself look good by comparison, offer tips to your colleague so you can both succeed and the company can benefit (though don’t let your own goals be jeopardized by your readiness to assist others). By demonstrating that you valuably contribute to the triumphs of others as well as your own, you are making yourself indispensable and a likely candidate for a promotion. Reversely, solely self-serving individuals have a way of estranging themselves from the team, having minimal loyalty and putting their own best interests ahead of the organization’s; no one would logically want to reward such a mindset, regardless of the worker’s productivity.

2) Be a problem-solver

In most workplaces, the one commodity that is equal to money is time. That being said, every time you ask your boss a question, understand that you’re requesting a slither of his or her already overbooked workday. Most of the time, your superiors should be happy to help you navigate a new set of circumstances if it will lead to you increasing your capabilities and productivity. That being said, do not use this as justification to request assistance every time you encounter a minor roadblock. Are you unsure how to calculate a row of numbers’ sum in an excel document? Look up the suggestion online. Are you foggy on what directives were given a week ago in regards to a project? Check your original notes. By asking your boss to help you out with situations that you could most likely straighten out on your own, you have the potential to be regarded as being “more trouble than (s)he is worth.”

Reversely, someone that takes the initiative to solve problems (rather than merely identify them) is highly valued in the workplace. By consistently demonstrating this willingness, you’re displaying that you are self-sufficient, a critical thinker and, ultimately, someone who is ready to take on more responsibility.

3) Don’t approach the office like school

In school, if you do a good job on a report or test, you get a large, happy “A” on the top. In the workplace, if you do a good job, the reward is that you get to keep your job. While some bosses will implement positive reinforcement, the reality is that many office environments don’t regularly doll out pats-on-the-backs on a daily basis. It is expected that you will do your best day-in-day out, and for you to do anything less is a reason for concern. As noted by Forbes, “59% of business decision makers and 62% of higher education influential give recent college graduates a C grade or lower for preparedness for their first jobs.” A lot of this is accredited to millennials having false expectations and an attitude that does not easily accommodate the current structure of the company; unfortunately, you shouldn’t expect to receive glowing verbal validation for every single task you do correctly, or else you’re setting yourself up to feel bitterness.

4) Handle pressure and mistakes with grace

No matter how talented you are, sooner or later you’re going to make mistakes and miss deadlines. The real test is how you maneuver such situations. Always be honest with your superiors, do not blame others and do not try to justify the circumstances. Come prepared with a proposed plan of action on how you can remedy the situation and, more importantly, what safeguards you’re putting in place to ensure that the blunder does not happen twice. While you do not want to act nonchalant about the occurrence, it’s important to not let the error affect your professionalism or productivity; do not dwell on the gaffe and, as much as you can, try to let it roll off your back. The ability to not crack under pressure and to handle tough situations with a cool head and grace is a fundamental characteristic of anyone who handles substantial responsibility. While some people are naturally more inclined to do this than others, reflect on what practices you can do to build this skill. Does going to the gym during your lunch break relieve your stress? Do breathing exercises or meditation help you to defuse built tension? Explore various possibilities and ask others in your life what has personally helped them.

5) Be responsible for your own growth

The Internet is an amazing place that provides endless educational articles, listings of industry lecturers and networking forums. Don’t let your professional growth occur solely between the hours of 9 and 5; instead of waiting for your boss to orchestrate new training sessions or give you exciting new projects, take your own career development into your own hands by learning or strengthening a new skill and offering your services to your superiors. For example, did you recently take a class in graphic design? Why not offer to create an infographic on behalf of the company. Have you always had a knack for writing? Volunteer to contribute an occasional piece of content to the organization’s blog. The major difference between a follower and a leader is that the first group waits for opportunities while the second classification creates them.

Forget About Setting Goals. Focus on This Instead.

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We all have things that we want to achieve in our lives — getting into the better shape, building a successful business, raising a wonderful family, writing a best-selling book, winning a championship, and so on.

And for most of us, the path to those things starts by setting a specific and actionable goal. At least, this is how I approached my life until recently. I would set goals for classes I took, for weights that I wanted to lift in the gym, and for clients I wanted in my business.

What I’m starting to realize, however, is that when it comes to actually getting things done and making progress in the areas that are important to you, there is a much better way to do things.

It all comes down to the difference between goals and systems.

Let me explain.

The Difference Between Goals and Systems

What’s the difference between goals and systems?

If you’re a coach, your goal is to win a championship. Your system is what your team does at practice each day.
If you’re a writer, your goal is to write a book. Your system is the writing schedule that you follow each week.
If you’re a runner, your goal is to run a marathon. Your system is your training schedule for the month.
If you’re an entrepreneur, your goal is to build a million dollar business. Your system is your sales and marketing process.

Now for the really interesting question:

If you completely ignored your goals and focused only on your system, would you still get results?
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For example, if you were a basketball coach and you ignored your goal to win a championship and focused only on what your team does at practice each day, would you still get results?

I think you would.

As an example, I just added up the total word count for the articles I’ve written this year. (You can see them all here.) In the last 12 months, I’ve written over 115,000 words. The typical book is about 50,000 to 60,000 words, so I have written enough to fill two books this year.

All of this is such a surprise because I never set a goal for my writing. I didn’t measure my progress in relation to some benchmark. I never set a word count goal for any particular article. I never said, “I want to write two books this year.”

What I did focus on was writing one article every Monday and Thursday. And after sticking to that schedule for 11 months, the result was 115,000 words. I focused on my system and the process of doing the work. In the end, I enjoyed the same (or perhaps better) results.

Let’s talk about three more reasons why you should focus on systems instead of goals.

1. Goals reduce your current happiness.

When you’re working toward a goal, you are essentially saying, “I’m not good enough yet, but I will be when I reach my goal.”

The problem with this mindset is that you’re teaching yourself to always put happiness and success off until the next milestone is achieved. “Once I reach my goal, then I’ll be happy. Once I achieve my goal, then I’ll be successful.”

SOLUTION: Commit to a process, not a goal.

Choosing a goal puts a huge burden on your shoulders. Can you imagine if I had made it my goal to write two books this year? Just writing that sentence stresses me out.

But we do this to ourselves all the time. We place unnecessary stress on ourselves to lose weight or to succeed in business or to write a best-selling novel. Instead, you can keep things simple and reduce stress by focusing on the daily process and sticking to your schedule, rather than worrying about the big, life-changing goals.

When you focus on the practice instead of the performance, you can enjoy the present moment and improve at the same time.

2. Goals are strangely at odds with long-term progress.

You might think your goal will keep you motivated over the long-term, but that’s not always true.

Consider someone training for a half-marathon. Many people will work hard for months, but as soon as they finish the race, they stop training. Their goal was to finish the half-marathon and now that they have completed it, that goal is no longer there to motivate them. When all of your hard work is focused on a particular goal, what is left to push you forward after you achieve it?

This can create a type of “yo-yo effect” where people go back and forth from working on a goal to not working on one. This type of cycle makes it difficult to build upon your progress for the long-term.

SOLUTION: Release the need for immediate results.

I was training at the gym last week and I was doing my second-to-last set of clean and jerks. When I hit that rep, I felt a small twinge in my leg. It wasn’t painful or an injury, just a sign of fatigue near the end of my workout. For a minute or two, I thought about doing my final set. Then, I reminded myself that I plan to do this for the rest of my life and decided to call it a day.

In a situation like the one above, a goal-based mentality will tell you to finish the workout and reach your goal. After all, if you set a goal and you don’t reach it, then you feel like a failure.

But with a systems-based mentality, I had no trouble moving on. Systems-based thinking is never about hitting a particular number, it’s about sticking to the process and not missing workouts.

Of course, I know that if I never miss a workout, then I will lift bigger weights in the long-run. And that’s why systems are more valuable than goals. Goals are about the short-term result. Systems are about the long-term process. In the end, process always wins.

3. Goals suggest that you can control things that you have no control over.

You can’t predict the future. (I know, shocking.)

But every time we set a goal, we try to do it. We try to plan out where we will be and when we will make it there. We try to predict how quickly we can make progress, even though we have no idea what circumstances or situations will arise along the way.

SOLUTION: Build feedback loops.

Each Friday, I spend 15 minutes filling out a small spreadsheet with the most critical metrics for my business. For example, in one column I calculate the conversion rate (the percentage of website visitors that join my free email newsletter each week). I rarely think about this number, but checking that column each week provides a feedback loop that tells me if I’m doing things right. When that number drops, I know that I need to send high quality traffic to my site.

Feedback loops are important for building good systems because they allow you to keep track of many different pieces without feeling the pressure to predict what is going to happen with everything. Forget about predicting the future and build a system that can signal when you need to make adjustments.

Fall In Love With Systems

None of this is to say that goals are useless. However, I’ve found that goals are good for planning your progress and systems are good for actually making progress.

Goals can provide direction and even push you forward in the short-term, but eventually a well-designed system will always win. Having a system is what matters. Committing to the process is what makes the difference.

Is Your Business Idea Lame or Awesome

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We’ve all been through moments where it seemed like we’ve landed on an idea that will make us millions of dollars. Sometimes though, our ideas are not as great as we think they are. Anyone remember the infamous Edsel car circa the 1950s? How do you work out whether your idea is awesome or awful? If the idea sucks, is there any way to rescue it?

Test Your Market

Testing the market is the most important thing for any budding entrepreneur to do. Having a great idea is one thing but knowing that there’s someone, or hopefully lots of people, who will turn into paying customers is quite another. Your market research should help you discover whether anyone would be interested in your product or service, what competition is out there, whether any similar businesses have failed or why nobody offers your product or service already. A great way of working out if there would be interest in your idea is to buy ads online or ask people to sign up on your mailing list notifying them of developments in your product. To entice potential customers, people have given way free products like an ebook if they sign up.

If nobody clicks on your ads or registers for updates, chances are the idea needs some work.

Finding out who your target market is also helps significantly in advertising. Knowing who you’re trying to attract is an important factor in success and its value is priceless. If you think your idea will be successful and you know who (and more importantly, how) to market it to, those are two less things, huge things, you have to worry about.

Thinking About Your Business Long Term

It is essential that you think about whether or not there is longevity in what you offer. Latching onto trends with no idea of how to develop or grow them is a bad idea. If you start off by simply picking one thing and being exceptional at it then your concentrated efforts will hopefully pay off. Profits will start to roll in and you can start diversifying your business. If you cannot even imagine at the planning stage where else your business could potentially go, then the chances are that it will not go very far.

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If it seems like your idea is not gaining much traction in the marketplace or you can’t envision how an idea could later grow, there is no need to put more effort into it. But that doesn’t mean you should dismiss your idea entirely. As long as you have done all this research before you started investing lots of money in the idea then you haven’t lost much. You should keep the idea on the backburner and see whether the same principles might be incorporated in a different context later.

Failure is also a perfect motivator for self-reflection. What was it about the idea that made you latch on to it and why was this the wrong thing to do? It’s been said that the difference between an expert and a beginner is that the expert has failed more times than the beginner has even attempted. When you’re trying to work out if your business idea is awesome or lame, do the research, be decisive and move onto the next idea if you need to. Failure is an option so failing fast will leave you more time for success later.

It’s important to ask yourself, are you solving a real problem? It’s okay if others have tried to solve it before, just make sure there’s enough room for your business to make an impact. And if after asking yourself this you’re still sure of your idea, then go forth and have complete confidence. Sure, you might end up taking a few steps back instead of forward somewhere along the road, but owning a business has never been smooth sailing for anyone

Healthy Habits For Increased Productivity

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Staying fit and keeping up with daily workloads are two distinct missions, but they are actually linked more closely than casual observers might think. The truth is, eating right and adjusting certain behavior leads to fitness-friendly approaches proven to enhance performance and productivity at work.

If you are struggling at the workplace; running out of steam before the workday ends, challenged to concentrate throughout the day, or feeling listless as you conduct your business – it might be time to get proactive about work- friendly eating habits and other healthy, productive approaches.

Eat Right to Increase Focus and Stamina

Productivity at work is closely linked to energy levels on the job. Mental acuity goes down when you are tired, hungry, or otherwise slowed physically, so work output naturally suffers when your body is stressed. For greater productivity at work, use healthy eating to reinforce your physical condition.

Sugar and Junk Food

Eating too much sugar leads to inconsistent energy levels throughout the day, as your body processes sweet foods. While the short-term impact of a glazed donut or two might feel like an energy boost, the downside of eating sugar cancels out the short-lived benefits.

In addition to sugary offenders, junk food loaded with carbs elicits similar responses from the body. Eating a carb-heavy lunch, for example, slows workers in the middle of the afternoon, as the body assimilates the junk food.

Eat Breakfast

Eating a worthy breakfast starts you off on the right foot, so you are not chasing hunger all morning long. Rather than loading-up on caffeine, productive workers balance morning intake, including fruits, grains and cereals.

Light Lunch

The most productive afternoons start with a light lunch comprised of healthy foods. Ideally, afternoon hunger pangs are addressed using raw vegetables, which carry workers to the dinner hour without slowing them down like carbohydrates do.

Moderate Activity Enhances Productivity

Too often, job responsibilities revolve around computer work and other stationary tasks. Too maximize output, productive workers look for ways to remain active throughout the day, rather than settling in for the long haul.

Seek Stairs

Taking the long way around furnishes daily opportunities to enhance productivity. Rather than riding elevators between floors, productive workers seek ways to stay active – taking the stairs instead.

Exercise at your Desk?

It may seem unconventional, but desk workouts enhance productivity, keeping blood flowing and workers healthy. Workout balls, for example furnish flexible alternatives to desk chairs, enabling staff to do resistance exercises without slowing output. Miniature pedal devices, placed under desks, simulate bicycle workouts without leaving the office.

Breaks and Lunch Hour

Lunch breaks provide opportunities for staff to reinvigorate, preparing for the afternoons’ workloads. Increasingly, employers furnish workout rooms and fitness equipment for employees to use on the job. Walking during breaks and even standing up periodically as you conduct business are additional ways to stay tuned-in and productive throughout the day.

Proactive efforts to eat right and stay fit promote good health and employee productivity.

3 Lessons Every Entrepreneur Can Learn From The Weight Room

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Fitness and aesthetics have been around forever (You’ve seen the movie 300. Those dudes were ripped!). Tons of information, good and bad, gets passed around the gym that helps people achieve their fitness goals. But, what people might not realize is that there are also entrepreneurial lessons to be learned as well.

#1: Perception is everything

Let’s be honest, we do what we do because it makes us look good. Seeing our hard work pay off makes us feel good. And we love the sense of accomplishment when we make progress.

Am I talking about fitness or business?

Exactly.

People who go through great lengths to care for their bodies are called vain, but people who do whatever it takes to create a successful company or brand are not called vain. They are called driven. They are called mavens. They are called entrepreneurs.

We are the generation that invented social media and get the majority of our news and information from it. We make dinner reservations based on Yelp reviews. We buy electronics based on Amazon comments and watch TV shows because of a friend’s Tweet. Imagine what kinds of decisions are being made because of your company’s public image.

Getting someone to tweet or update about your product or brand is the difference between a customer and a passerby. You should be monitoring what is being said about your company just as much as That Guy at the gym checks himself out in the mirror.

#2: Relentless work ethic

As everybody learns, you can’t quit on fitness and hope for success. When you start to see the fruits of your labor, you should view that as the beginning of your journey. The same goes for building a brand, a product or service. You’ve got to do everything in your power to work toward the success that you want.

By “everything in your power” I am speaking literally. No one else is going to have the drive for success that you have.

#3: Never scale backweightroom

In fitness, we strive for gains: strength gains, size gains, muscle gains. Have you ever heard of someone who made it a goal to be able to lift less weight or run fewer miles by next month? No! There is no need to scale back in fitness and you should never do it in business either. Scaling back is essentially admitting to yourself ,your company and your customers that you aren’t able to accomplish the goals that you set out for yourself.

People don’t get into business to live paycheck to paycheck. That means there are big goals behind every struggling, and failed business. The difference between the company that is thriving and the on that is dying is the desire to make those goals a reality.

How To Find Your Purpose In Life In 3 Simple Steps

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To me there are different types of approaches or ideologies with which people live their life. There are some who don’t care about the way they live life, there are others who strive hard to live a moderate and ordinary life, while there is a third kind of ideology in which people try to live a life of purpose and they want their life to mean something.

The purpose of life may vary from person to person, however, the biggest tragedy is that most of us live our lives without paying any attention to the purpose of life, in other words we just live a purpose less life. An even greater tragedy is that people who wish their life to mean something don’t know how to find the purpose in life. Below, I will be sharing how you can find your purpose in life in 3 simple steps.

Do What You Love!

Most of us want to become a lawyer because it pays good and the same goes for becoming a doctor or any other profession that comes with a huge paycheck. However, there are very few who do what they love. Thus, those who opt for something because of some charm associated with the thing, they turn out to be mediocre in whatever they chose to do with it. On the other hand, those who opt for a particular thing out of love and interest are able to achieve excellence and make that thing priceless and a wonder for the world. Therefore, if you are fond of law, only then would you be able to exercise law to the right extent where it would bring true justice in the society and you will feel the purpose of your life served. Therefore, always do in your life what you love the most and the achievement of that will tell your heart that this is or was the purpose of your life and you need to keep on doing it.

Value Your Values:

As I mentioned above, we people are in a rat race and all we want to do is to get ahead of each other and achieve what we wish to achieve by whatever means necessary. Thus as a result of this entire race, we keep aside the values which we have and fall prey to the temptation of achievement. Once the values are drawn out of our life, then no matter whatever activity we undertake, no matter how meaningful it apparently seems, it all feels shallow and purposeless.

Get Out Of The Comfort Zone:

Another reason why most of us never find our purpose in life is that we get used to of living a conventional, cozy and a life full of routine that we don’t want to get out of our comfort zone to experience something new. Very lucky are the people who know at the very first time that what they have to do in life, the rest of us have to move around to find the purpose of our life. For instance, if are a business executive and don’t want to get out of your shell, then how would you know that you have entrepreneurial abilities and you can earn more and contribute more to the society by being an entrepreneur compared to what you are contributing by being a mere professional. Therefore, before becoming a part of rat race, take some time and experiment with different things that you think you enjoy doing or that don’t make you feel shallow. If you find one then pursue it with full heart as it would be the one that will form the purpose of your life. Hence, another way of finding the purpose of your life is to get out of your comfort zone and experience new things.

Now it’s Your Turn!

How did you find purpose in your life? What kind of troubles did you face? What kind of experiences did you have during the way? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

It’s the 21st Century: Innovate, Experiment, & Grow Read

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Today’s twentysomethings are lost in many ways. It’s a tricky world to live in, vastly different from the one in which our parents grew up.

We were promised a world full of jobs, opportunities, and new and exciting ways to make a living. The world of the 21st century was supposed to be a huge improvement over the 20th, and we were all supposed to enjoy an amazing, bright, optimistic future.

Now, it’s easy to argue that that isn’t the case. We constantly hear about disappearing jobs, a bad economy, corruption at the highest level, etc. etc. And there is some truth to this of course.

But our parents were right in some ways. There are tremendous opportunities out there for young, knowledgeable people to get what they want out of life.

Innovation-Quote-Tom-Sachs-WSJ-784x1024We just need to know how to look for them.

Our parents’ world is disappearing. The days of walking out of school and into a job that supported your family while your wife takes care of the home and the children are all but over. But we still expect this to be the case. We’re still thinking like it’s the 20th century.

How can we help it? After all, we were raised by our parents, and they’ve only got their own experience to go on. They’re taking up most of the old school jobs that do still exist, and so to them the world hasn’t changed much. But to a new, ambitious young graduate, things are very different.

I recently re-read one of my favourite short stories, The Martian Way by the late, great science fiction pioneer Isaac Asimov. The story revolves around a group of humans who live on a Martian colony and who make their living by scavenging spare parts left floating in space. The ships ran by blasting water out the bottom of them to lift them off. But when a new water ration was imposed by the government on Earth, it essentially grounded every scavenger, leaving them out of a job.

But one scavenger, Ted Long, came up with an innovative and creative new way to get around the ration. The solution was to get their water from other places in the Solar System and end their dependency on Earth’s water supplies.

This might seem like an obvious solution, but there’s more to it than that.

In the early in the days of space travel, Earth people discovered that any more than six months or so in space would leave you a psychological mess. This became the rule of thumb, and Martian people lived by it. But Ted Long realized these rules were written by people on Earth. People who were used to spending time in wide open spaces like forests, parks, mountains, and all the other beautiful natural vistas we take for granted. But Ted Long came to realize the Martian colony wasn’t much more than a big spaceship on the planet’s surface. He’d spent his entire life there, so he and his fellow scavengers could handle space travel much better than Earth men could.

Just like Ted Long, we hold all sorts of different beliefs and rules of thumb which seem true, but end up holding us back from what we can really accomplish. But once Ted Long realized the common sense knowledge people believed didn’t apply to him, he found a new and creative solution to his problems.

Like Mark Twain said, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

If you want to be successful in your career, you’ll need to leave the old fashioned ways of thinking behind. But what does it mean to think like it’s the 21st century?

Here are a few ways to help rearrange how you think about a job, a career, and how to succeed.

Focus on the internet!

You know as well as I do that the internet is the future. It’s what has been driving our world for nearly twenty years now.

…it feels weird to say that.

Anyway, there are many people who have become wealthy by taking advantage of the power of the internet. And I’m not just talking about web designers and software tycoons. In fact, you can make a living in ways you’d never even think of.

Do you have a blog? You can make money with it.

Do you like photography? You can sell stock photos, prints, greeting cards, and much more!

What about videography? YouTube will pay you for good videos.

Have you written a book? You can sell it online!

Graphic designer? The possibilities are nearly endless!

Or maybe you’re not a creative type. You can buy and sell items on EBay, become a virtual assistant or a mobile app tester, buy and sell domain names, build an e-commerce site to sell products, get into affiliate marketing, and much more.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many opportunities available online that a career counsellor won’t be able to help you with. They’re still thinking about jobs in a 20th century manner, after all.

And to many people, these options just don’t occur to us. I’m pretty sure no child ever said they wanted to be a mobile app tester when they grow up. But these 21st century career options can help you make a good living.

Solve problems in a creative way

Once you’ve found a good opportunity, it’s important to take advantage of it as best you can.

In his book Linchpin, author Seth Godin talks about the concept of being a linchpin to an organization. According to Wikipedia, a linchpin is “a fastener used to prevent a wheel or other part from sliding off the axle upon which it is riding.”

The linchpin doesn’t get as much attention as the wheel or the axle, but without it the whole thing falls apart. It’s indispensible. If you’re a linchpin in an organization, you work the same way.

Your parents might have taught you that the best way to succeed in your career is to work hard, keep your head down, and do what you’re told. And this might have worked in a 20th century job, but the world moves too quickly for that to be effective anymore. Businesses are always looking for new and creative ways to keep themselves relevant in the modern world.

If you can solve these problems for them in a creative way, even if it’s not “your job” to solve them, you’ll make yourself indispensable to your company, and make yourself more valuable to the people around you.

Stay educated!

To our parents and grandparents, education wasn’t as important as it is today. They finished high school, of course, and then they started a job. They learned how to do their job, and then they did it. That job didn’t change much from the day they stepped into it until the day they retired.

But the world is changing too quickly for old knowledge to be useful for very long. People are always coming up with new and interesting ways to do things. In certain industries (like SEO, for example), things change so dramatically that using old methods can actually harm your efforts! But if you can keep up to date with it, you’ll become smarter, more productive, and better at what you do. You’ll be in a much better position to become a linchpin for your organization.

How can you keep up to date? Use the internet, of course! Search YouTube and the blogosphere for news about what’s going on in your industry. Pay attention to new possibilities and new methods of doing things. You can always learn from what other people are up to.

Learn to sell!

Selling is difficult for many people. It was difficult for me for a long time too, I know. But today more than ever, it’s one of the most important ways you can bolster your career.

The art of selling is simply about persuasion. If you’re selling a product or service, it’s about convincing someone it’s something which will bring them value.

It has a nasty reputation for being a way to take advantage of people. At best it’s a bothersome annoyance, and at worst it’s a way to squeeze money out of innocent people with no care for anything other than blind profit.

And of course, it can be used in this way. But it doesn’t have to be!

Just like a knife can be used to hurt someone or to prepare a family dinner, the art of selling is neither bad nor good. It’s just a tool.

In the 21st century, knowing how to sell is one of the most important tools out there. After all, there are all sorts of interesting new technological innovations coming out every day which are untested and unproven. You might know with all your heart that you have a useful solution for a business, but everyone else is probably not as convinced.

As an internet marketer, I have to sell clients on the idea of SEO all the time. And that’s simply because I know that a top ranked spot on Google can bring someone incredible amounts of new business. But some of them haven’t even heard of SEO in the first place!

So what do I do? I convince them that SEO is something they need. Not because I’m taking advantage of them, but because I know something they don’t know. I know how much business a good SEO campaign can bring in, and it’s my job to convince them of the power of SEO.

Selling can be very complex, and there’s a lot to it. But fortunately, there’s some great material out there on the subject to help you learn. Check out guys like Zig Ziglar, Neil Rackham, and Mike Bosworth. Each has written some great books on how to become great at selling.

Be an entrepreneur!

According to a recent report from Babson and Baruch Colleges (and reported on here in Forbes), entrepreneurship has hit record high levels in the United States. There are more entrepreneurs today than ever before in US history.

Another statistic puts it in more concrete terms. Each month, more than half a million new businesses are formed in the United States alone!

What are these people doing? With so many different companies being formed, it seems like a little of everything. These businesses range from multinational conglomerates to single moms selling homemade jewelry on Etsy, but those who run them all have one thing in common. They’re entrepreneurs.

How do you become an entrepreneur? The simple answer is to find a need in the market, and find a way to fill that need in a way that’s profitable.

Look, I know times are tough. They really are. But there are so many opportunities out there too, if you just know where to look.

How have you been thinking about your career so far? Maybe you’re following your parents’ advice. After all, it’s what they did, and it worked out okay for them, right?

Yeah, it worked great in the 20th century. Back when advertising in the Yellow Pages worked. Back when you rented a VHS video tape or an Atari game from Blockbuster Video. Back when stuff like this was cool. Ah yes, the good old days.

Now, no one is ever going to be able to convince me Twisted Sister isn’t still cool. But that’s not the point. The 20th century is over. Done. Kaput. Take a lesson from Ted Long, and adapt your beliefs to fit your surroundings. It’s time to think like it’s the 21st century. Leave the old methods in the past.