Tag Archives: Want

Want to Change Your Culture? Start By Redefining "Manager"

What do you think of when you hear the word “manager”? If you’re like many employees, the words that pop into your head could include zookeeper, cog-driver, or dictator or characteristics like outdated or out of touch. The typical definition of the word “manager” is simply a person who manages others. In many cases in the media and in real life, managers are portrayed as being aloof, arrogant, or simply incompetent and just there to do less work than their employees but make more money. It’s no surprise that many companies are turning away from the term manager because it can be viewed so negatively and seen as old fashioned.

On the other hand, what do you think of when you hear the word “leader”? For most people, it invokes thoughts of being inspired, led somewhere new, and gathered as a team. A leader is someone you can turn to who can transform your work into something more meaningful and help you reach a far-off goal. For many people, a leader isn’t an assigned or promoted position, but rather a characteristic that someone naturally possesses.

Over time, our language has shifted so that managers and leaders have taken on completely different definitions. One is generally considered negatively and viewed as outdated, while the other is positive and forward-thinking. The simple rift between two similar words may not seem important in the long run, but it has actually created two dichotomies inside organizations that have a large effect on how things are run. Even without realizing it, employees may have hard feelings towards a manager or not like their methods because of their title, while managers may subconsciously fill their roles with a commanding presence instead of leading a team of employees to greater success. If someone has naturally leadership abilities, they may be viewed more positively by employees than a manager, even though their responsibilities might be different.

But what would happen if we focused on redefining the term manager and equated the position with leader so that the words were interchangeable? That simple change could have huge impacts within organizations, both for employees and managers. Instead of feeling simply like cogs in the machine, employees could feel empowered and like there was someone they could go to for help, inspiration, and connectivity. Managers would feel empowered and have the tools to inspire workers instead of simply passing on information from executives and driving simple tasks. Instead of feeling locked into the corporate rules, leader managers can have more creativity to get the job done and help their employees reach new heights.

Organizations that consider managers as leaders tend to be more forward-thinking and have replaced the outdated idea that managers sit on pedestals to boss around employees. This is especially important in the future of work where most employees don’t simply work their way up the corporate ladder anymore. By changing how organizations think about leadership and management, organizations can make sure they are hiring people who inspire and lead others no matter their position in the company. Changing the definition of the word manager also changes how companies reward and promote employees, which could resonate especially well with a new generation of workers. Over time, we would likely see the negative connotation for the word manager decrease and empowerment and interaction between managers and employees increase as those imaginary walls come down.

It may seem like a simple change, but redefining the term manager can have a huge impact on a company and lead to a changed mindset for everyone within its walls.

Learn more about redefining managers here. 

Tech

Want an iPhone 6S for $1? Get ready to switch to Sprint

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On Friday the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus arrive in stores, and while thousands may line up for a chance to get their hands on a pink (rose gold) iPhone, others will be looking for the best upgrade deals.

In this U.S., Sprint may have just topped them all.

The wireless service provider announced on Thursday a gonzo limited-time trade-in deal to current iPhone 6 customers: $ 1 a month for an iPhone 6S and $ 5 a month for an iPhone 6s Plus.

The payment plan is actually part of Sprint’s “iPhone for Life” plan, which means customers are actually leasing the phone for, in this case, 12 months. After that, they turn in the phone for a new one and continue paying against the monthly lease agreement. While typical Sprint lease plans might charge $ 20 a month for a 16GB iPhone 6s, this one will charge you just a $ 1, meaning that, after 12 months, you end up paying $ 12 for the iPhone 6s. In the case of the larger iPhone 6s Plus, you pay $ 60. Read more…

More about Sprint, Tech, Mobile, Iphone 6s, and Iphone 6s Plus


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Smart tips for getting the content results you want

content is king

SPONSORED:

This sponsored post is produced in association with Citrix GoToWebinar.

Here you are again. Refreshing your website for the millionth time to see if anyone shared or commented on your week-old post. No matter how much effort you put into your post, your readership refuses to grow.

Don’t blame the audience. The reason why no one is reading your content is because you’re neglecting key strategies that will help make your work go viral. And with new websites and blogs opening up everyday, you need all the help you can get.

Headlines can make or break your content

According to Copyblogger, an average of 8 out of 10 people will read the headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest of the article. If the reader finds your headline boring, he won’t be motivated to read the rest.

Upworthy suggests in its “How To Make That One Thing Go Viral” slideshow to write out 25 headlines for an article. The exercise helps dump out the crappy and predictable headlines and churn out the clever and exciting one hiding in your head.

When writing out one of those 25 headlines — or 10 if 25 is daunting — think about making your headline emotional. CoSchedule states headlines based on emotions, such as happiness or anger, perform the best on social media.

There’s even an online tool to judge how emotionally invested your headline is called the Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer. It categorizes your headlines in three categories: Intellectual, Emphatic, and Spiritual. This is useful in deciding which headline would best suit your target audience, or which type performed the best on them. If your audience prefers headlines that evoke reasoning or careful evaluation, then you need to aim for the best Intellectual score.

Certain words also contribute to viral success stories, as shown in this 2013 analysis by Iris Shoor.

Headlines with the words “no,” “without,” and “stop” generated strong shares. Continuing the thought, albeit in a darker way, “kill,’ “fear,” “dark,” “bleeding” and “war” contributed to top shares. If you don’t feel like turning your content into a horror show, other successful words used in high-sharing posts are “smart,” “surprising,” “science,” “history,” “hacks,” “huge,” “big,” and “critical.”

Producing content people want to read

A good post should be easy to read — not filled with never-ending walls of text. It’s why numbered or bulleted lists are favored by online readers: they’re easy to spot out and digest. The same is true for subheadings which make it easier for viewers to comprehend detailed posts.

Searching for what’s trending online is one way to gain attention and Quora is an ideal tool for this situation. Quora allows you to search any topic your target audience might be interested in based on popularity and quality. For example, let’s say you want to write about the travel business, but not sure how to go about it. One popular thread on Quora talks about which airline or domestic travel is best for going to India. You can use this thread to write an article about your own travels to India, or name airlines that share the positive qualities users were looking for.

BuzzSumo is another useful tool for topic scouting. It not only lets you see which topic performs best on social media, but lets you see how well your competitors did discussing the same topic as well — very helpful in deciding which topic and approach would be best for your readers.

Most importantly, seeing the common trends regarding your niche allows you to think of ways to make your approach unique from everyone else.

The simplest and often overlooked way to finding out what your audience wants is to merely ask them with a short survey, newsletter, or social media question.

Get social media to work harder

Beyond owned properties, it’s essential to distribute your content effectively, and, of course, social media is a must. But there are best practices you might be ignoring.

Plus, not only does your content get a huge boost in distribution across social media channels, but social can improve your content in search. According to Branded3, URLs receive significant lift in Google rankings when they’re shared on Twitter. URLs with over 7,500 tweets almost always rank inside the top 5 results when people are searching a topic you may have written about.

But how should you compose your social media posts?

Based on this infographic by Kevan Lee, the most popular social media posts had these ideal character counts:

  • Twitter: 71–100 characters
  • Facebook: 40 characters
  • Google+: 60 characters
  • LinkedIn: 80–120 characters

There are other factors to consider in catering to certain social media markets. Hootsuite researched the demographics associated with each social media account and her are some of the results:

  • 38 percent of internet users access social media through mobile
  • 54 percentof Millennials use LinkedIn for industry news and advice
  • 76 percent of Tumblr and 74 percent of Instagram users are teens

With this kind of intel in hand, you’re then equipped to target and segment your audience using the most appropriate platform. You might use Instagram for a promotional contest targeting teens and young adults, Twitter to drive general mobile traffic to your blog, or LinkedIn to share opportunities or guidance related to your industry. Mobile users are also more likely to browse during 8-8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. And for businesses catering to families or food and beverages, Pinterest is the perfect social media platform.

Building an online presence requires you to be intriguing, consistent, relevant, and conversational. Engaging with other social media personalities gets your name out in the public and possibly a recommendation — so having an influencer strategy is important. It also lets your followers know that you’re the real deal and not a robot behind a keyboard.

User-submitted websites like Reddit, StumbleUpon, and Digg also expose your work to new people, so try to stay active on them as well.

Don’t ignore metrics

The only way to optimize and improve content over time is to measure and analyze. Tools such as Google Analytics lets you track how many visitors you received on your site and how well certain posts and keywords related to your niche performed. Furthermore, it breaks down your readership by age, gender, and region. Performances on different browsers and desktop and mobile are also monitored, helping you decide how to better optimize your site for readers.

Viral content isn’t easy to make, but it’s not impossible. Creating great headlines, posts, and online presence is fundamental to your success.

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VMWare Doesn’t Want EMC?

The press isn’t generally allowed into the cushy briefing rooms where Wall Street analysts get updated by corporate executives on a company’s future. At least not at tech conferences. VMworld, being held in San Francisco this week, was no different. But analysts do provide notes for their clients.

Continue reading…


Cloud Computing

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