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Surprisingly, office meetings are always long. You hardly ever hear of anyone complaining that the meetings were too short. Every company has its own culture when it comes to meetings and how they are conducted. The general sentiments su...
Surprisingly, office meetings are always long. You hardly ever hear of anyone complaining that the meetings were too short. Every company has its own culture when it comes to meetings and how they are conducted. The general sentiments surrounding office meetings however make them appear boring and ineffective. But why should it be this way? Is there an alternative to making meetings productive? The fact remains that every meeting usually has an agenda that is communicated either before or during the meeting. What makes meetings seem like they are ‘going nowhere’ has to do with the set up and the premise for which these meetings are held and how the content is passed on. Below are some reasons behind the failure of company meetings. Objectives Aren’t Clear Every meeting started must have clear objectives. Lack of tangible and well-structured objectives not only wastes time but also confuse the attendees who may be left to guess what the meeting is all about. Be sure of what you are trying to achieve by holding the meeting and bring that objective out clearly. To help you on this, a pre-meeting review and rehearsal would be appropriate just to ensure that the agenda is in order and the points are well arranged, this enhances and streamlines the objectives of the meetings. Unless you convince yourself, you may not be able to convince the rest of the attendees. Unregulated Number of Attendees Before holding any meeting, the number of people to attend these meetings needs to be checked and ascertained. Not everyone should attend the office meetings. In fact that is one of the reasons that make these meetings fail in making an impact. The more the people attending the meeting, the higher the likelihood that such a meeting will consume so much time compared to the set time limits. Instead of each person attending the meeting, only a few should be picked and the rest served with a brief summary of the discussions later on. Time Blown A meeting is ‘elastic’ in nature; it tends to stretch out to fill whatever time it has been allocated. Meetings which take longer than necessary tend to eat into the company’s time and still end up being counterproductive. Part of the time allocated will normally be used for conversations that are not even company related or if they are then not on the agenda. To make such meetings successful, you can reduce the time so that only the relevant things get time to be discussed. The ‘Latecomer’ Factor Meetings tend to spend too much time on arrivals. Late arrivals in particular can waste time for the entire group. The solution to this is to start the meeting on time so that latecomers will find ways to catch up on their own. People will soon shape up and arrive in time because latecomers are embarrassed walking in when others are embroiled in deep discussions. This will save time for the whole group and the meeting will achieve its purpose. Conducting Sitting Instead Of Stand-Up Meetings Research shows that stand-up meetings take lesser time that those where people are seated. This is because stand-up meetings tend to make people less comfortable, meaning decisions are arrived faster, deliberations made in record times and only pertinent issues get airtime. So far these meetings have been ranked among those that are productive and efficient. Remember time saved in the course of a meeting is always equated to productive time given back to the company. Discuss more with less time; you will find meetings meaningful and effective. Photo credit: imlworldwide.com About the Author: Tina Samuels writes on how to be first on Google, social media, marketing, and other business topics. Related Posts:Improving Productivity – Meeting MadnessCompany Meetings Cutting in on Productivity?5 Ways Your Employees Can Be More ProductiveIs Having Clients at Your Home for Business a Wise Move?Talking Your Way to Success
about 5 hours ago
#WhiteLeaves Blog Tour - Sunshine & Mountains Blog -
#WhiteLeaves Blog Tour - Sunshine & Mountains Blog -
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about 6 hours ago
After seeing Victor from Metallman review one of the Anker Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless Headsets, I just had to get myself a copy to review here for DragonBlogger as I spend 8 hours a day sometimes on conference calls and bluetooth adapters fo...
After seeing Victor from Metallman review one of the Anker Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless Headsets, I just had to get myself a copy to review here for DragonBlogger as I spend 8 hours a day sometimes on conference calls and bluetooth adapters for cell phones make my life a lot easier. I will say that the Anker Bluetooth Wireless Headset is a fantastic deal and at $29.99 is better than some Bluetooth headsets I have tested at twice that price.  It has a ton of accessories to help it fit better around your ear, and 2 types of backs for the mounting charger including one that lets it slide in and hold the mount + earbud on your car vents, and another that includes an adhesive back for sticking the mounting charger on your wall next to your desk or to your dashboard if you don’t want to slide it into your vents. The headset worked better with the over the hear attachment for me to hold it in place and it is fairly comfortable but not the most comfortable I have tested, it does come with a bunch of replacements in case the rubber gets damaged or worn which is a nice touch. The over the ear attachment worked very well to hold it in place and the sound quality was very good from this Bluetooth earbud and it will play music so if you play Spotify or any music you can listen to it on one ear, say you are driving in a car and waiting for a call for example.  Normally one would not listen to music in just one ear, but it is a good if you are between calls or driving and can’t fiddle to put earbuds in while driving. The microphone quality isn’t bad but I did get some complaints about the following, surprisingly this is the first microphone on a Bluetooth earbud where two people told me my voice was so LOUD.  There are adjustments to lower the speaker volume, but no way to modify the microphone volume and this thing is nowhere near my mouth for the volume to be that loud.  In fact there is no way to lower microphone sensitivity on an iPhone or any bluetooth device I am aware of so was the first time I ever heard this complaint ever.  I call this person all the time from other Bluetooth devices and the volume is always lower, this is a good or a bad thing. The noise cancellation isn’t great, my ceiling or desk fan when running high can cause choppiness, so have to lower my fans in the room.  My voice I was told sounded a lot like talking into a speaker phone, loud and clear but had a hollow sound a little bit. Still, overall I had the opposite complaints when calling the same people from my Plantronics Voyager Pro which is 3x more expensive, they would say my voice was too low, and it didn’t really do much better blocking ceiling fan or desk fan choppiness.  So based on me comparing this Bluetooth headset to one that is a lot more I was extremely happy with the quality you get for a $29.99 Bluetooth Headset and think Anker has another winning product on their hands. Here are the full product specs: Bluetooth 4.0: 8 times the bandwidth over the 2.1 standard producing crystal-clear sound quality. A2DP Bluetooth profile allows for ultra-high definition media playback. Connection quality: One-motion call answering; multipoint connection; microphone’s CVC background noise canceling technology for improved connection clarity. Battery life: Rechargeable, built-in Lithium-ion battery provides 5 hours of continuous play time, while the magnetic charging dock automatically triggers Sleep/Wake modes, conserving battery life for even longer use. Charge up: Either the charging dock (connected to a power source) or the included USB cable charge the headset. Package contents: Anker Bluetooth 4.0 Headset, charging dock, USB cable, adhesive mounting strip, vehicle air vent mounting clip, 2 ear hooks, 2 eartip pairs, user manual. Be the first to comment... Related Posts:Win an Anker iPad Ultrathin BlueTooth Keyboard CaseUsing A Bluetooth Headphone For VoIP CallsAnker Ultrathin Bluetooth Keyboard Case ReviewReview of the Ank
about 8 hours ago
Image source Google’s oft-quoted advice for getting your blog articles ranked is that you should write rich, high-quality, and valuable content. That’s great advice and, without good content everything else you do to improve your SERP po...
Image source Google’s oft-quoted advice for getting your blog articles ranked is that you should write rich, high-quality, and valuable content. That’s great advice and, without good content everything else you do to improve your SERP position is largely a wasted effort. However, there are many things you can do in addition to creating high-quality content that will give your articles a boost. We’re going to look at 10 basic SEO techniques that every blogger, writer, and editor should be aware of when they are creating content for the web. Keywords Matter, But Don’t Overdo It Google’s algorithms have come on leaps and bounds, and they can do all sorts of clever semantic analysis to figure out what your content is about, but that doesn’t mean you can neglect keywords. Keywords in the text correspond to search queries, and although Google will match queries with synonyms and other variations, you’re more than likely to rank higher if you include exact match keywords in your text, so make sure you do your research beforehand and have a clear idea of what people are searching for. On the other hand, don’t go overboard and stuff as many keywords as you can into your content. It makes for awkward reading and the days when keyword stuffing would guarantee a place in the SERPs are well in the past. Don’t Neglect Long-Tail Keywords While you definitely want to hit the most prominent keywords in the niche you’re targeting, the long-tail is actually far larger than you’d expect. If you neglect the long tail, you’re throwing away valuable traffic that is likely to be less hotly competed for. Pay Attention To Titles And Subtitles It’s particularly important that you put keywords in a prominent position in H1 and H2 tags. Again, don’t overdo it, but make sure that your target keywords find a place in your article’s titles and subtitles. Get Your Meta Tags In Order Image source Some parts of the page are given more weight by Google than others, and among the most important areas for optimization are meta tags that don’t appear in the page content at all. Two that you should definitely be aware of are the title tag and the description meta tag. Technically, the title tag isn’t actually a meta tag; it’s an HTML element, but we’ll deal with it here rather than in a separate section. The title tag determines the text that appears in the blue link on the search engine entry and is intended to be succinct summary of the content. It should be no longer than approximately 70 characters, and should contain the article’s primary keyword, plus other keywords. Don’t just make it a list of keywords, because that looks bad in the SERPs. The description meta tag is a true meta tag. It looks like: meta name=”description” content=”A short summary of the contents of this page.”> It occurs in the page’s head section along with the title tag. The description meta tag is usually used by the search engines to populate the snippet that appears underneath the blue link in the SERPs. The description tag probably isn’t as heavily weighted as the title tag, but it’s good practice to ensure that it contains a succinct summary of the article that is no more than 160 characters long and contains the relevant keywords. If you’re using WordPress, an SEO plugin like the one from Yoast make both of these tags easily editable. Grammar And Spelling It may seem like common sense, but there’s plenty of content out there that throws caution to the wind and makes no effort to conform to the grammatical norms and the preferred spelling of the market it’s aimed at. Grammar and spelling matter: Google doesn’t want to send its users to sites where the articles look like they’ve been written for a lolcat meme. That said, an incorrect use of the subjunctive or the occasional split infinitive aren’t going to matter at all, but insofar as is reasonable, stick to standard grammar and run a spell checker over your content before publishing it. Use Relevant Categori
about 9 hours ago
How to Use Memes and Add Value to Your Brand (via http://paulschaecker.blogspot.nl) By Adrienne Erin in Branding Technology A lot of Internet users are fascinated by, amused by and addicted to memes. It’s probably because memes are stat...
How to Use Memes and Add Value to Your Brand (via http://paulschaecker.blogspot.nl) By Adrienne Erin in Branding Technology A lot of Internet users are fascinated by, amused by and addicted to memes. It’s probably because memes are statements about our culture — images, phrases and videos that can spread ideas from person to person…
about 10 hours ago
Salman Rushdie is one of our greatest living novelists. His novel, Midnight’s Children, won the Man Booker Prize in 1981, and in 2008 the novel was named the Best of the Bookers, the best Booker winning novel since the prizes’...
Salman Rushdie is one of our greatest living novelists. His novel, Midnight’s Children, won the Man Booker Prize in 1981, and in 2008 the novel was named the Best of the Bookers, the best Booker winning novel since the prizes’ inception. However, before Sir  Salman Rushdie was a famous, knighted novelist, he was a copywriter under the suspender-wearing, direct marketing pioneer, David Ogilvy. Yes, that’s right. The great novelist learned from the great copywriter. What do copywriting and creative writing have in common? Some would say, “Nothing.” It’s easy to look at Rushdie’s time at Ogilvy and Mather’s London office as his period of “working for the man” while he wrote his novels. However, the lessons Rushdie learned as a copywriter were essential to his development as a novelist, and the fact that Rushdie wrote Midnight’s Children  on the off hours from his copywriting job shows that maybe he should never have quit? Let’s explore these lessons about effective writing from novelist and copywriter Salman Rushdie. 1. Spend an inordinate amount of time on headlines While finishing Midnight’s Children, Rushdie reportedly spent several hours at the office trying to choose the novel’s title, even resorting to typing his two finalists “Children of Midnight” and “Midnight’s Children” over and over. Today, we’re inundated with titles and headlines. Everywhere you go online, from Facebook, to Twitter, to your email inbox, someone is trying to grab your attention with a compelling headline. If you want your blog post or book to have a chance, you need to spend time making sure your titles are both clear and engaging. Salman Rushdie knew how important the title of his book was, and spent hours debating which to choose. How long are you spending working on your headlines? 2. Panic your way to success Imagine it’s your job to convey the taste of a chocolate bar in just one word. And by the way, you’re not going to get paid for, “Delicious.” This was the situation Rushdie was in one afternoon when a panicking co-worker asked him to brainstorm a new slogan for Aero, a British candy bar filled with air bubbles. As they batted around ideas, the unthinkable happened. The client called unexpectedly, demanding results. This particular co-worker, according to Rushdie, “Had a tendency, when he was panicking, to sweat profusely and to begin to stammer, also extensively.” When the client asked him to do something, he said, “It’s impossib-ib-ib-ible.” Rushdie says the light went on. “While he was still on the phone sweating and stammering, I wrote down every word I could think of that ended with ‘able’ or ‘ible’ and turned it into ‘bubble’.” Rushdie ended up with “Irresistibubble,” which is still Aero’s slogan, over 30 years later. Panic can be an excellent tool for creativity. Here are a two easy ways to summon panic in your creative process: Become accountable: While Rushdie had the benefit of a client on the other end of the phone and a boss like David Ogilvy looking over his shoulder, bloggers don’t always have people to hold them accountable. However, you do have your audience, and you can always imagine them sitting at their computers, waiting for you to publish your next post, and wondering what’s taking so long. Are they really doing that? Probably not, but we can hope, right? Set Deadlines: When I used Feedburner as my email subscription service, my post had to be finished by 11 every morning or it wouldn’t be emailed to subscribers until the next day. At 10:55, I sometimes found myself in a nervous sweat, rushing to finish my post. I could have easily changed the setting to a later time, but I left it because it forced me into a panic that fueled my productivity. Want to force yourself
about 10 hours ago
Everyone who has a successful blog or an online presence will agree that building an email list is very important. Over the years, we’ve tried numerous techniques to get more email subscribers. After trying several WordPress lead-g...
Everyone who has a successful blog or an online presence will agree that building an email list is very important. Over the years, we’ve tried numerous techniques to get more email subscribers. After trying several WordPress lead-generation plugins, we decided to create a perfect solution that delivers result. In this article, we will show you how we organically increased our email subscribers by 600% in less than a month by using OptinMonster. Some of you would think that 600% growth probably meant that we weren’t getting many subscribers before. That’s not true. On a daily basis, we would get around 70 – 80 new subscribers from the sidebar form, contact forms, and other landing pages on the site. By making one single change on the site, we were able to increase our daily email signup rate to around 445 – 470 new subscribers per day. That’s a 600% growth with the same amount of traffic that were getting before. So what changed? Well, we started using OptinMonster. What is OptinMonster? OptinMonster is a lead-generation plugin for WordPress that allows you to easily create and integrate highly effective optin forms on your website. It integrates with all major email service providers, and it comes with powerful features such as page-level targeting, A/B split testing, and exit-intent technology. Using OptinMonster we were able to create a smart lightbox popup with exit-intent. Wait, don’t all popup sucks? Yes, most popups suck because they’re not done right. What is a Smart Lightbox Popup? An average popup is usually opened on a separate window (normally when you visit a website or when you click on the screen). Those are freaking annoying as heck. Then there are the other lightbox popups that you probably see a lot of bloggers using. These are boxes that open within the same window usually right when you visit the website. These are not as bad, but they can definitely annoy some users. Then there is a smart lightbox popup. Smart lightbox popup is a targeted message that opens on a specific page right when the user is about to leave. How is that not annoying? We ran a split test on WPBeginner to see how lightbox popup effects our bounce rate and whether we get any user complaints. The first thing we found was that the bounce rate on a page with an exit-intent lightbox was the exact same as the page with no lightbox. Second, we had absolutely zero user complaints. Last but not least the amount of new email subscribers we got with exit-intent lightbox were significant. Exit-intent Magic The key reason behind these phenomenal result is exit-intent. Why? Because the users who were going to leave your website will leave anyways. Using the exit-intent technology, we were able to convert abandoning visitors into subscribers. OptinMonster’s exit-intent technology track user’s mouse gesture and velocity as they browse through your website. This allows the plugin to detect the precise moment the user is about to leave, and prompts them with a targeted campaign. Unlike other annoying exit popups, it does not prevent the user from leaving. They can close the window like they normally would. But what this does is give you a new real estate, technically an extra pageview, to retain that visitor and potentially get them to subscribe. Most visitors leave your website without subscribing even when they like the content. Why? Because they have a short attention span, and there is no clear call-to-action on most pages. Also because of the short attention span, they probably won’t ever return to your site. Now if you make it easy for them to subscribe and give them a gentle reminder, then they’re much more likely to subscribe. If you offer them a free bonus, then that’s even better. How to Use OptinMonster to Get Maximum Benefits You’re probably thinking that it will be a complex setup. Well, it really isn’t. It took us less than 10 minutes to get this all s
about 10 hours ago
Sorry, journalists — you can’t rely on tech companies for your next big payday (via Pando Daily) By Hamish McKenzie On October 7, 2013Bad news, journalists. Tech companies likely aren’t going to save you from your low-paying...
Sorry, journalists — you can’t rely on tech companies for your next big payday (via Pando Daily) By Hamish McKenzie On October 7, 2013Bad news, journalists. Tech companies likely aren’t going to save you from your low-paying, high-drudgery jobs at newspapers, magazines, TV channels, radio stations, or blogs. If you’re looking for the easy way… The post Sorry, journalists – you can’t rely on tech companies for your next big payday appeared first on The Blog Herald.
about 10 hours ago
One of the coolest features to have on your site is the popular Page Peel effect. The effect mimics the flipping pages of a book the makes the site more interesting to view. There are many methods to do this but here is a simple way whic...
One of the coolest features to have on your site is the popular Page Peel effect. The effect mimics the flipping pages of a book the makes the site more interesting to view. There are many methods to do this but here is a simple way which you can follow even if you’re just a beginner. The tutorial is from Ataul Ghani, who shows you how to create the page peel effect using jQuery and we will be featuring it here. By using jQuery, you can customize it if you feel to tweak the effect. Below are the steps: Login to your Blogger Blogger Dashboard > Template > Edit HTML In Edit HTML, search for and behind it, copy and paste this code provided by Ataul: // $(document).ready(function(){ $("#pageflip").hover(function() { $("#pageflip img , .msg_block").stop() .animate({ width: '307px', height: '319px' }, 500); } , function() { $("#pageflip img").stop() .animate({ width: '50px', height: '52px' }, 220); $(".msg_block").stop() .animate({ width: '50px', height: '50px' }, 200); }); }); // And before , add this code: /* Page Flip ----------------------------------------------- */ #pageflip { position: relative; right: 0; top: 0px; /* Change to 30px if you have the navbar (navigation bar) */ float: right; z-index:9; } #pageflip img { width: 50px; height: 52px; z-index: 99; position: absolute; right: 0; top: 0; -ms-interpolation-mode: bicubic; } #pageflip .msg_block { width: 50px; height: 50px; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; right: 0; top: 0; background: url(http://oi44.tinypic.com/2hheno6.jpg) no-repeat right top; } #pageflipMirror { position: static; right: 0; top: 0; float: right; } Paste the code seen below after 6. Save. Note: Before customizing your template, make it sure to have it backup. Hope Ataul’s steps help you in making your site more appealing to the readers.
about 17 hours ago
Out of all the Blogger templates that I’ve seen so far that has a masonry design layout, SoraTemplates‘ TheStyle has got to be the one with the most unique take on it, because unlike the others, theirs involves having one of the co...
Out of all the Blogger templates that I’ve seen so far that has a masonry design layout, SoraTemplates‘ TheStyle has got to be the one with the most unique take on it, because unlike the others, theirs involves having one of the columns occupy twice the space. Actually, it’s a 4-column layout with 2 sidebars, and the first row in the middle usually fills up 2 column space. The succeeding rows are then evenly divided to 4 until the next page. he jQuery mouseover effect is pretty nice; whenever your mouse cursor hovers over one article it expands its container while it dims out the others. The date stamp looks great too; aside from being very visible, it blends perfectly with the post’s thumbnail, as if it’s part of the image. Things I wish it has is a more stylish CSS3 effect for the navigation menu, a more refined Search box (‘coz that brown outline that appears every time you click on it just takes away the professional look of the template), and some social sharing widget preferably at the top (but the footer would do just fine). As for the template’s features, it include: page navigation, SEO friendly, 1-to-4-column footer, and a jump (a.k.a. Read more) button. NOTE: One thing you’d need to remember in case you might want to try it out however is that you should at least have 10 published posts in order for the template to work properly. You can download TheStyle template here.
about 17 hours ago