5 Ways You Can Spend Your Work Breaks

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Productivity|5 Ways You Can Spend Your Work BreaksIn this day and age, there is a major focus on productivity in the workplace. Employers want to be sure that they’re getting their monies worth from each employee and maximizing their potential as a business. However, for the sake of balance, employers are also realizing that employees aren’t robots and need healthy breaks during and after work hours. It is also left to employees to know how to utilize such breaks so that they don’t feel overwhelmed and overworked. Here are five ways that you can spend your work breaks.

Go for a Walk

It’s always good to stop and get some fresh air after hours of focused work. A good way to go about doing this would be to take a walk. Whether it’s a five-minute or twenty-minute walk, it could do your mind a lot of good. Some benefits of going for a walk are that it can help lift your mood and get your creative juices flowing. These are two things that you need to get your best work done. Also, pulling away from the computer can help your eyes and concentration.

Play Games

During your work break, another thing you could get up to is playing a few games. This is actually great for your brain as game playing can likewise improve concentration and enhance your social skills.

In addition to this, it’s an ideal way to distract yourself from work which you need if you want to come back with a fresh mind. You could play the lottery online if you want a short and fun game. Online games also have their benefits as they can be entertaining and social seeing as you can play with other people.

Meditate

If you can find a quiet space during your break, use it for meditation. This is the perfect opportunity to clear your head and relieve any work-related stress you’re feeling. If you’ve never meditated before, it’s easy to learn. Also, you can start with as little as 2-5 minutes and then gradually work your way up. In terms of how to meditate, start by committing to a daily practice.

This should outline what time you’re going to do it every day and for how long. Once you’re ready to start, sit comfortably, keep your back straight and rest your hands in your lap or on your knees. You should then defocus your eyes, breathe deeply, and ensure your body remains relaxed. By the time you’re ready to go back to work, you should be refreshed enough.

Read

If you’ve got a book or novel you haven’t had a chance to read, why not go through a couple of pages during your break time? It’s a way of redirecting your attention and also unwinding.

You will need a quiet place to read in order to avoid distractions unless you have noise canceling headphones. It has been stressed that you should try and read every day. Doing so enables you to tick that off of your personal development list.

Exercise

Some places of work happen to have a gym on their premises. Others offer discounted gym membership for places nearby. Consider going for a quick session during your break to get rid of any negativity and tension that may be triggered by work. It’s also a way of boosting your wellbeing and ensuring your mind and body are in a healthy space.

How To Up Your Chances Of Success In Anything

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Success in Business|How To Up Your Chances Of Success In AnythingWhen you begin your journey into success, no matter what it is, your end goal is always to reach the pinnacle. Perfection is an impossible feat, but you have to strive for that – otherwise, what’s the point? For as long as you remember, you’ve always been told about following your dreams and making the most of life, but the pep talk always tends to be left at those clichéd soundbites. Many hear motivational speeches and shrug their shoulders because they’ve heard it all before, and it hasn’t made a difference to their lives at all.

The good thing is that success, especially in the business world, can be found by absolutely anyone. You don’t need to have anything special about you in order to hit heights that not many have before. Anyone who has ever managed to find success in their lives has been nothing other than your regular, typical person. We like to place them above us and treat them as though they’re extraordinary when they’re simply a human.

You want to be at the top. You want to be like those you see and read about. If you have any lingering doubts about whether you can align yourself with the best, don’t worry, you absolutely can. Let’s look at some ways you can increase your chances of skyrocketing the project(s) in your life.

Stick To Your Plan

You need to have a structured idea of how to do things. You need this because making things up as you go along will only get you so far. A plan acts as a roadmap for the future as well as a priceless piece of information to refer back to. When you forget a certain aspect, you can just look at the plan and refresh your memory.

Never Stop Learning

You may think that you’ve gotten everything you need stored in your noggin (especially when you’ve managed to find a reasonable amount of results), but there’s always more you can fit in there. Those at the top of the game always behave as though they’re just starting out when it comes to taking in information. There will always be somebody that knows a little more about a certain topic or niche than you.

Remember That You’ll Always Need Help

Much like how you’ll never know all there is to know, you’ll also not be able to do everything by yourself. Even if you’re in a group or you have employees handling stuff for you, you’ll no doubt still need to pick someone else’s brain or an extra pair of hands. Contacting an IT Support firm for tech issues, a freelancer for the nitty-gritty or someone super specific should always enter your mind when you’re at an impasse – or even if you’re not.

Make Sure It’s Something You Enjoy

You’ll always get better results when you’re enjoying the ride. Think of everything you’ve ever done that numbed your mind – you went slowly and couldn’t wait to get away from it, right? When you do stuff that you like, the extra motivation to get it done isn’t necessary as you’re already knee-deep into it naturally.

How to Manage Your Individual Finances Efficiently

Each adult in this world has a personal financial world to manage and nurture as they move through life. Ideally, this world grows and develops at a steady and stable pace – but sometimes it’s difficult to manage, what with life’s many difficult obstacles. This article is all about managing those finances efficiently. It’s about making your cash go further, understanding your spending habits, and preventing your life from slipping into the world of debt that can quickly lead to a spiraling decline to your financial health. The tips below are relevant to every individual looking to sustain a healthier economic life into the future.

Budget and Account

Perhaps the most pivotal piece of advice for long-term financial efficiency on a personal level is to account for your spending, and budget out what portions of your salary you are happy to be spent on things like rent, food, and entertainment. Whether you choose to hire an accountant, you draw up your accounts yourself, or you engage with a smart bank that collates your spending data into handy reports automatically, you should always have an eye firmly on your ins and outs in order to understand where you can cut your spending to save more cash.

Avoid Debt

For many people across the US, a paycheck is whittled down to nearly nothing each month, which means that at times it’s difficult to emerge from your overdraft. Of course, there are varying degrees of debt, all with their own level of seriousness for you and your financial health. For instance, debt to your landlord can result in your eviction, with incredibly serious knock-on effects for your ability to earn and live in the future. That’s why it’s advisable to get quick cash loans in serious debt situations such as not being able to afford your rent, but you should ensure that you are paying these back as soon as you get your next paycheck.

See a Financial Advisor

Some individuals feel that they’re not extremely well trained in the world of finance and money management. As it’s not something taught at schools, this is no surprise. Whether you’re wondering how mortgages work, whether you should take out multiple credit cards, or how to optimize your tax, there are individuals out there who can answer these questions for you. Demystifying the financial world is one of the best remedies to confused citizens unsure of how to manage their cash – so find an advisor today.

Find Tips Online

The internet is an incredible resource for anyone looking to find expert advice, for free, on how to operate more efficiently in the world of finance. You can find tips on how to choose the right bank account or the best insurance provider. Or if you’re looking for more long-term strategic planning that takes into account your lifestyle, your family and your projected earnings, you’ll be able to see things from a clearer perspective by finding some of the internet’s most trusted and accurate financial advice pages to help you plan your economically bright future.

Finances are sometimes impenetrable and difficult to manage. This article aims to help individuals achieve better financial health, operating more economically efficiently going forwards into the future.

What Does Your Email Reveal About Your Leadership Style?

StrategyDriven Management and Leadership Article | Fewer, Faster, Better Emails | What Does Your Email Reveal About Your Leadership Style?“I don’t know that there’s necessarily a correlation between leadership style and their email writing. I’ve never researched that specific connection.”

“Understood,” my CEO client responded. “Just review what my admin sends you and give me a one-page opinion on each of the four VPs. That’s all I ask.”

This conversation happened early in my career, and frankly, I feared that I might disappoint him in not being able to draw conclusions.

Within a few days, the CEO’s bundle of emails arrived, basically restating what he’d said on the phone. His executive assistant had collected emails from four of his VPs. Specifically, the emails were representative of those the four VPs had sent to 1) peers 2) their direct reports and 3) those higher-ups in the chain (the CEO himself or EVPs).

My mission: To describe their leadership style and general attitudes about their work as reflected in their emails. So I pushed through the pile of VP documents carefully labeled by his assistant.

After submitting my one-page opinions on each, the CEO phoned again. “You’ve pegged them exactly! … Now, I want you to meet with them one on one to debrief them. Tell them what’s apparent in their writing. Give them the details about what you found. See what they might want to change.”

The first three meetings went well. The VPs seemed quite shocked that their writing revealed so much about their personalities, attitudes, and leadership style. But basically, they agreed with my evaluations and the emails discussed as examples.

But the fourth meeting (scheduled last because I dreaded it) didn’t go so smoothly. As I suspected, the SVP reacted quite differently. Mac listened in almost total silence as I delivered my conclusions.

As tactfully as possible, I pointed out that his emails to the executive team sounded friendly, but vague and cavalier. On the other hand, emails to his staff sounded indifferent at best and harsh and dictatorial at worst.

His general response that day: “Not interested in making changes.”

A few months later, I learned that Mac was no longer with the organization. Although I don’t know all that contributed to his termination, I do know that his writing did not add to his credibility, influence, or results with clients, coworkers, or higher-ups.

4 Ways Your Leadership Style Is on Display in Your Email

What can you apply to your own situation?

Unwillingness to Share Reasoning

When Mac presented a recommendation to higher-ups, he supported it with data or at least his reasoning. Not so, with staff. With them, he simply announced his decisions and expected compliance.

An Attempt to Bluff

When answering questions from higher executives about projects, budgets, or problems, Mac often responded with sketchy details. The tone was, “All is well, just trust me, and don’t probe.” A reader easily got the feeling that Mac took offense if the boss asked about any skeletons in the closet.

No Requests for Input

Mac wrote to his staff almost entirely in directives. He requested no opinions or ideas from them. When he informed them of a decision and upcoming action, the tone was, “Make it happen and don’t bother me with questions.” The difference between Mac and a mafia boss? Mac dealt in mortgages. Mafia bosses deal in murder and other mayhem.

Lack of Personal Accountability

Even though I analyzed more than a hundred of Mac’s emails, none contained an “accountability” statement – not even close.

  • No statements of goals (specific goals would have set him up to explain any shortfall)
  • No acknowledgement or apology for a mistake or misunderstanding
  • No ownership for poor outcomes – his or those related to his team’s performance
  • No feedback or praise to his team or colleagues

Granted, Mac didn’t send his entire email stash for the CEO’s evaluation. But reason would suggest that he’d sent his best – a collection aptly reflecting his leadership style.
Just as Mac’s writing did, your email can alter the trajectory of your career. Leaders master strategies to improve what they say, how they say it, and what NOT to say in email. And in my three decades of experience, I’ve observed that clear communicators become leaders in every industry.

Find out what secrets your own emails reveal about your leadership.


About the Author

StrategyDriven Expert Contributor | Dianna BooherDianna Booher’s latest books include Faster, Fewer, Better Emails; Communicate Like a Leader; What MORE Can I Say?; and Creating Personal Presence. She’s the bestselling author of 48 books, published in 61 foreign editions. Dianna helps organizations communicate clearly and leaders to expand their influence by a strong executive presence.

Tips For A Successful Conference

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article | Conference Room | Tips For A Successful ConferenceIf organisation is not your strong point then planning a conference can be particularly tricky. You need to start off with a vision and then carefully implement steps along the way in order to reap success. The trouble is that a lot of people don’t know where to start and they struggle with direction. If only you had a step by step guide that could see you through. Well, now you do! Read on to make your conference planning a lot easier.

What is your vision?

First of all, you need to be clear about your vision. What is the purpose of your conference? What is the message you are trying to convey? Never ever lose sight of this. Every part of the organisation needs to be central to your main goal. When you find a venue for example, you need to think; is this the perfect place for a conference on *subject A*, rather than is the venue fancy and stylish. Develop your purpose into a vision – how many people do you want to reach? When do you want this conference to take place? And so on and so forth. You cannot plan anything effectively without set targets in mind.

The budget

So you have your targets, but do you have the budget? In truth; as long as your aims aren’t ridiculously unrealistic, then any target can be met. In the current day and age it is all about searching, comparing, and hunting down the best deals. But set a budget in mind nonetheless – this is crucial. Then roughly estimate how much money is going to be dedicated to what areas. You’ll need to do your research in order to find figures for the average price range of things, such as; venue hire, equipment, and so on and so forth.

Purchasing process

You now have a clear focus; your goals and the means you have to achieve them. Now you need to begin the purchase process. Start with your venue. There are some great and diverse conference venues. You should search on the internet in order to unearth locations meeting the requirements you have set. Once you have got the venue and date sorted you can begin with invitations, equipment hire, and other aspects you may need, such as catering.

Venue

When you search for the perfect venue for your conference, there are lots of factors you need to consider. You want to ensure that the venue you select is impressive. You want to ensure that the venue is fully equipped with everything you need and that you get to hire it for a reasonable price. Nevertheless, one thing you must consider, that has a knock-on impact on everything else, is where the venue is situated.

Before you even begin to look for a conference venue, you should make a list of all of those who are going to be invited to the occasion. Get yourself a map and write each person’s initials on the area they are based. This will help you to determine a central location that would be easy for all of your guests to get to. After all, you do not want to pick somewhere resulting in a long drive for your attendees. This may deter your guests from even making the journey – let’s be realistic; not everybody wants to drive for several hours for business.

In addition to this, don’t take for granted the fact that not everybody drives. You need to pick somewhere easily accessible via public transport. Most cities are generally good for this. Nevertheless, you should make sure that the venue is within walking distance from the nearest public transport drop off point. This is all about convenience. At the end of the day, if your guests have had to experience a long hike in order to get to your venue then they are going to turn up in a bad mood, and that is the last thing you want when trying to impress.

The day itself

All the initial plans and organisation have now been put into place. You can zoom in on the day itself now. This is all of the little particular points that you shouldn’t forget. Make sure your guests know where to go to when they get to the venue. Make sure you have refreshments on offer. Don’t forget to practise your presentation in front of other people. You can make powerful presentations using Beautiful.AI. Make sure you familiarise yourself with where the disabled access is. Visit the venue and visualise where you are going to set everything up. All these little aspects are underestimated but vital in the grand scheme of things.

If you use this guide then you are bound to have a smoother organisation of your conference. Outline your goal, set your budget, find conference venues, get your equipment, and then deal with the finishing touches.