How to Have More Meaningful Conversations

In business and in pleasure, conversations are our roadmaps through the day. They are how we share information, feelings, and ideas, and the nature of our conversations dictates the all-important relationships between ourselves and those around us. It’s no wonder that conversing can be pretty energy-consuming. And we can all be guilty of avoiding eye …

How to win an argument every time (according to science)

Ever feel you’re fighting a losing battle at work? Compromise and empathy are valuable assets, but sometimes you need to outright get your point across if progress is to be made. Laboring on under a false understanding can just create more trouble down the line – and nobody learns anything if their misconceptions are never …

What a Business Financial Statement Can Tell You About the Health of Your Business

When you run your own small business, it can be difficult to keep an objective distance from what you do. Bills come in, sales go out, you have your day-to-day goals and you watch the curvy line of profit and loss make its inexorable progress throughout the financial year. You have your big one-year and …

How to build your emotional intelligence and look out for those around you

There are few responsibilities we have at work that won’t be handed over to computers and automatons in the decades to come, but one skill that will never be fully devolved to the robots is emotional intelligence. Every encounter you have at work is defined by the emotional intelligence of those involved. Even when you …

How to give negative feedback to your employees

Positivity has become something of a cult the past few years. Like political correctness and the ‘#gratitude’ craze, it comes from a good place – but is meaningless if performed by rote, rather than discovered through respect and mindfulness. Negativity is by no means a healthy attitude, but point-by-point identifying of negative trends within an …

Uncooperative

In economics, perfect competition is hailed as an ideal. It is a situation where a large number of firms each produce a similar product, and so consumers can get what they want at the lowest possible cost. The cult of competition starts early. At certain elite high schools in Sydney, student exam scores are publicly …

How to achieve your goals by improving your self-discipline

Breakfast is not just the most important meal of the day, but also the most important meeting you’ll have: a chance to check in with yourself, remember what it’s all about, and strengthen your resolve to succeed. Success in business means not just managing your assets, your network, and your office, but above all: managing …

Using Facebook Ads to make your brand part of everyday life

If you’ve been turning your nose up at the idea of advertising on Facebook, you’re missing out on a fantastic opportunity. It may not exactly be ‘old school’ – even by internet standards – but Facebook Ads have a way of integrating themselves into your customer’s daily lives in an unobtrusive way that puts them …

It’s time to spring clean your social media customer care strategy

Most young entrepreneurs have a pretty good handle on social media. The same business people most likely have a healthy understanding of customer care. However, put the two together, and the results are not always intuitive. Dealing with complaints and enquiries via social media is a game with its own rules – neither as informal …

The Spirit of Giving – Re-examining the notion of “Value”

Merry Christmas! Joyeux Noël! Sheng Dan Kuai Le! (圣诞快乐!) Wishing you an enjoyable day, and a happy holiday season spent with good people, surplus amounts of food and drinks, and a large number of gifts! One idea that is firmly associated with Christmas is gift giving. This is a central part of the Christian tradition, …

Hope

“Hope is like a path in the countryside: originally there was no path, but once people begin to pass, a way appears.” ~  Lu Xun, Chinese author (Image Source: Flickr)

Brevity

“Never use a long word when a diminutive one will do.” ~ George Orwell (slight mis-quote) [Diminutive is a synonym for “small”.]

Sanitised vs Sanitary

Are you trying to build a work environment that is more sanitised or more sanitary? There is a difference. A sanitised work environment is generally inoffensive, and is designed to satisfy the strict (and habitually self-serving) requirements of the HR checklist. A sanitary work environment, on the other hand, is one that’s designed to be favourable for the health and proper functioning of …

Learn How To Avoid The Five Most Common Mistakes Made By Leaders And Managers

If you have recently been placed in a leadership or managerial position in your company, then you may need to change the way you approach work each day. The five most common mistakes discussed below are made by those in management in virtually every sector of the business world. Learning how to avoid them can …

False Dilemma – Value, Cost or Focus

Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter argued back in 1985 that there are three generic strategies that an organisation can follow to achieve above average performance. You can operate at low cost, provide distinct value to customers, or focus on doing one of these things while targeting a specific niche in the market. The unfortunate fallacy that Porter introduced is that …

The Gift of Giving

Merry Christmas to you, dear reader! This is a special time of year when people give gifts and send messages of happiness, peace and good will to family and friends. Christmas is a unique and valuable tradition because the practice of gift giving reminds us what life is all about. As social animals, our identity, survival and prosperity depends on being part …

Pen vs Sword

(Source: Flickr) Most people are familiar with the expression “the pen is mightier than the sword”, but where does it come from? According to the BBC, the expression first appeared in Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s 1839 play Cardinal Richelieu. This may have been the first usage in English, but Bulwer-Lytton appears to have borrowed from a longer tradition. Napoleon Bonaparte, known more for …

Restoring Derelict Spaces to Lease-Ready Condition

This is a guest post from Sarah Smith. Savvy investors know that there is a lot of potential in converting abandoned or derelict spaces into lease-ready properties. Below are five (5) tips on converting a vacant spot into a high-revenue lease property. 1. Pop-Ups This refers to taking a small vacant space and converting it into …

Pie or Cake?

Strategy involves defending your slice of pie, or growing it bigger. Innovation involves saying, “hey, we have some pie, why don’t we bake a cake or some cookies to go with it.” Some companies spend so much time trying to get more pie, that they never get a chance to enjoy a second dish. Business …

Love vs Lock In

Economists love to talk about “scarcity” and the fact that we live in a world of limited resources. However, in the digital world this need not necessarily be the case. Phil Libin of Evernote is of the view that if you’re in a traditional industry like minerals extraction or transportation, then customers will either go …

What is an “asset”?

(Source: Flickr) When can you consider something that you have to be an asset? This may sound like a funny question, but it is particularly important for the success of organisations and your success as an individual. The answer turns out to be largely a matter of perspective. If you are an accountant, then your goal is to categorise resources into groups: assets, liabilities, and …

Say Something

Often we can be scared to open our mouths and say something. Expressions like “empty vessels make the most noise” and a pervasive social fear of rejection can make it difficult to open up. Why is this the case? Schools, universities and families typically work best when there is an open flow of communication. But on a day …