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digitalNow
Exploring leadership, management, innovation, and technology issues and trends; impacting associations & non-profit organizations in the digital age.
Curated by Don Dea
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Don't Be a Wimpy Manager

Don't Be a Wimpy Manager | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Don Dea's insight:

'Ive got a great relationship with my team and I don't want to change that. However, I'd like my team to perform to the level I believe they can. What can I do?" Here's another wimpy manager. As I said to him, "If you've got such a great relationship with your team, why don't they already know they're not performing up to your expectations? It doesn't sound as if you've been clear with them."

Wimpy managers aren't fair. They don't speak up. They don't clue employees in on when they're veering off-track. They don't "tee up" employees so they can make choices. They simply withhold information and hold in their frustrations - believing they're being nice - while the employees continue to head down their undesirable paths. Then when an employee makes that one mistake too many, the manager can't take it anymore and moves right into the full blown disciplinary process and starts the path to termination. Is that fair? I don't think so.

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Writing for Mobile Readers

Don Dea's insight:

So should you be handling content for mobile use differently? The answer is probably yes. But exactly what to do differently may not be so certain. We're in the early stages of mobile content consumption. It is still uncertain what and how much content mobile users are really interested in consuming.

Some research has indicated that the small screens of mobile devices severely limit reading comprehension. One finding asserts, "Users can see less at any given time. Thus users must rely on their highly fallible memory when they are trying to understand anything that's not fully explained within the viewable space. Less context equals less understanding."

That's something for editors to keep in mind. It's also worth keeping in mind that there are no time-tested answers yet. We need to employ agility in our evolving editorial approaches to mobile content.

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Are you Valuable or Valued?

Are you Valuable or Valued? | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Liz Weber Explains How to Determine if You Are Valuable or Valued.
Don Dea's insight:

 (product, service, or other benefit) that adds tangible monetary or material gain for our customers. How do we do that? We need to find out what is valuable - and not merely valued - by our customers.

There's a big difference between providing something that is valuable and something that is valued. Again, according to Webster's Dictionary, VALUABLE means "1. Of high monetary or material value 2. Of great importance, utility, or service". VALUED, on the other hand, means "Highly esteemed". Both terms are impressive. However valuable products, services, and information are what keep customers coming back to you time and again. Valuable items create some type of monetary or material gain for your customers; whereas, a "valued" item is appreciated by your customers, but may not be important enough to them to pay for it. That's the distinction. Do you want to get paid for what you add or do you just want to be appreciated?

To determine how valuable your products, services, and information are to your customers, ask them. What elements of your service do they find valuable? What aspects make their jobs easier, less time-consuming, or more profitable? What would make their jobs even easier, less time-consuming, or more profitable? What do you provide they like, but don't really need? What do they find wasteful or unnecessary? How does the value of your products or services compare to others?

Ask your customers for the answers. They'll tell you. Then you'll know how to add value, because you'll know what is valuable.

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Just Because It's Unpopular, Doesn't Mean It's Wrong

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I have created my own work-life reality…outside of corporate America.

This one makes me crazy. I know a lot of smart people. Consultants, analysts, even CEOs of small firms. You know who I am not personal friends with? CEOs of big A$$ Silicon Valley tech companies. I really don’t know any of those. So reading the opinion pieces (Branson excepted for now) of folks who don’t have to cut spending, consolidate their workforce and basically make a company that has been losing for nigh on a decade now PROFITABLE, is at best, laughable. You don’t know. You really don’t.

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Who Sets Your Benchmarks?

Who Sets Your Benchmarks? | digitalNow | Scoop.it
In his new book, What You're Really Meant to Do , Robert Steven Kaplan outlines a step-by-step approach to defining success on your own terms.
Don Dea's insight:

Many of us motor through our young adult years trying to rack up one achievement after another—being "successful"—without thinking through what we truly want. At many points along this journey, we seek or get guidance from well-meaning peers, friends, family, and loved ones who advise us what we should desire and what we should avoid. Little of this advice is based on any deep understanding of who we are as individuals, but rather on the advice givers' own experiences, desires, and understanding of social norms.

Fortunately, some young people get the kind of wise guidance and coaching that help them focus at an early stage on their strengths, weaknesses, passions, and sense of self. Others gain this insight later in life, perhaps with the help of mentors and other people with whom they have strong relationships and who take the time to understand them as individuals. With this support, they develop the strength, confidence, and self-awareness to gravitate toward paths that fit their passions and skills.

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Careerify

Don Dea's insight:

HR and Marketing are similar in this way. Marketing went through its renaissance recently and I believe that HR is going through the same growing pains today. With the advent of digital, social and increased transparency in data, Marketing had to begin proving its worth as a cost center. HR is now having to do the same thing, moving from cost center to revenue generator is going to be tougher for HR. I do believe the fabled seat at the table happens for CHROs when the accountability and risk are taken along with that added respect. Educated analysis of key data points, spend, loyalty, engagement, sentiment, and being able to point to a piece of paper and prove your vertical directly affects that number or line? That’s how you get in on the decision making process.

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Changing The Habits of Business

Changing The Habits of Business | digitalNow | Scoop.it

The habit of failed thinking must be replaced with successful thinking before any new habit can become real.

Don Dea's insight:

Now consider 10 common habits of business in terms of the two most important assets, human and relationship capital:

  1. Human capital is viewed as an expense to be cut rather than an asset to be appreciated
  2. Relationship capital is what you get from the customer and the supplier rather than what you give or earn
  3. Human capital is defined by a job description or a college degree rather than the “true value of the person”
  4. The few are in the habit of thinking they know more than the many
  5. Titles mean more than a meaningful conversations
  6. Gender is a filter for determining capabilities for a job
  7. The “job” is what we say needs to be done not the real work you could be doing
  8.  Value creation is what employees and customers provide for the business and management provides for stockholders
  9. HR manages the fuzzy stuff. Management is about creating results.
  10. It is important that you read and memorize our vision, mission and purpose statement after you’ve read our social media policy. our vacation policy, our lunch break policy, our parking policy, our EEOC policy, our benefit qualification policy, our family leave policy, our sexual harassment policy, our gender equality policy, our expense reimbursement policy, our dress code policy, our customer relations policy, our employee training policy, our confidentiality, our supplier relations policy, our travel policy and any other policy we deem important to protecting the value of our business and its shareholders.
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How to Win Customers and Influence Your Followers

How to Win Customers and Influence Your Followers | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Where marketers market digitally and where consumers look for information don't line up. To influence your followers, you may need to change your approach.
Don Dea's insight:

We’ve all heard the mantra, put your marketing message where your prospects will see it.

But do we take the time to understand our prospects? Or do we make a lot of off-base assumptions?

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GDP measurements totally miss digital economy

Don Dea's insight:

 “GDP is essentially a measure of production,” says the former vice president of IBM, chairman emeritus of the IBM Academy of Technology, and visiting lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “While suitable when economies were dominated by the production of physical goods, GDP does not adequately capture the growing share of services and the production of increasingly complex solutions that characterize advanced economies. Nor does it reflect important economic activity beyond production, such as income, consumption and living standards.”

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Two charts that tell you everything you need to know about the future of newspapers

Two charts that tell you everything you need to know about the future of newspapers | digitalNow | Scoop.it
The U.S. newspaper industry has lost more than $40 billion in ad revenue in the past decade — over half of that in the last four years alone — and Google’s ad revenues are now more than twice what the industry pulls in.
Don Dea's insight:

The speed with which billions of dollars in advertising revenue simply evaporated over the past decade is incredible: as Perry notes, after adjusting the figures for inflation, total print ad spending last year of about $19 billion was below the level set in 1950. It took 50 years — a generation, in other words — for ad revenue to go from $20 billion to a peak of $65 billion in 2000, but it only took 12 years for that progress to be erased. Print revenue dropped almost 50 percent in just four years.

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Big Data and Marketing: Big Problem or Big Opportunity?

Big Data and Marketing: Big Problem or Big Opportunity? | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Any business dealing directly with customers wants to make sure they can attract and maintain a customer as efficiently and rapidly as possible.
Don Dea's insight:

Big data presents both a challenge and an opportunity for marketers trying to connect and engage with customers. This enormous volume and variety of data held in disparate structured, semi-structured and unstructured sources about customers and their purchasing behaviors, preferences, likes and dislikes must be managed and used to continue the dialogue.

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What is a MOOC?

What is a MOOC? | digitalNow | Scoop.it
What is MOOC?
Don Dea's insight:

The future of MOOC

The concept is gaining popularity with more and more avenues available for students to learn. While there is a big debate going on whether this concept indeed open or not but in my opinion MOOCs provide a solid technology concept which needs to be harnessed more, allowing it to be more structured towards learning. The availability of random basic courses will not be fruitful in the long run.

Where can I access MOOCs


I am listing few websites which are offering free MOOCs but this is not the exhaustive list:

  1.     Coursera (https://www.coursera.org/)
  2.     Udacity (https://www.udacity.com/)
  3.     edX (https://www.edx.org/)
  4.     Khan Academy  (https://www.khanacademy.org/)
  5.     Udemy (https://www.udemy.com/)
  6.     Codecademy (http://www.codecademy.com/)
  7.     Duolingo (http://duolingo.com/)
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Social Media Management and the Myth that "Anyone Can Do It"

Social Media Management and the Myth that "Anyone Can Do It" | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Whilst awareness is at an all time high, many businesses wrongly regard social media as 'easy' to do, after all, what skill does it take to make a status update?
Don Dea's insight:

Just some of the skills a social media manager needs to have

  • Strong interpersonal and networking skills
  • A good understanding of planning and strategy
  • Customer-centric approach
  • Clear understanding of Google Analytics (or similar) and the ability to set up effective campaign tracking
  • The ability to interpret data and gain insights
  • Lots of  creativity and personality (even the stuffiest brand needs to show some personality to succeed on social media)
  • Up to date knowledge of guidelines for all the platforms you are active on
  • Excellent copy writing skills, in particularly the ability to write good headlines
  • A good understanding of business objectives and the ability to craft effective calls to action
  • The ability to create custom graphics to accompany posts
  • Excellent time management skills and high level of focus
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An Ancient Rule For Coping With Stress

An Ancient Rule For Coping With Stress | digitalNow | Scoop.it

 Do you find yourself running   out of energy? Are you worried about too many things? Do you want to cut everyday stress?

Don Dea's insight:

Worry only about the things that are in your controlthe things that can be influenced and changed by your actions, not about the things that are beyond your capacity to direct or alter.

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How to Demotivate Your Best Employees

How to Demotivate Your Best Employees | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Many companies hand out awards such as employee of the month, but do they work to motivate performance? Not really, says professor Ian Larkin . In fact, they may turn off your best employees altogether.
Don Dea's insight:

"People respond very strongly to monetary incentives with this gaming mentality," he says. "When I talk to companies about award programs, I find myself telling them, 'Don't put in that $500 or the trip to the Bahamas.' It sounds like a nice thing to put in, but it also changes the psychological mindset people have."

Instead, Larkin says that companies may fare better just by giving people a nice plaque, sending an email to staff, or calling a meeting to recognize certain workers publicly in front of the whole crew.

"You can't put a price on that. The recognition of hearing you did a good job and that others are hearing about it is worth more than money."

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On really listening

On really listening | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Can I start out by saying that I am FINE? I have polyps on my vocal chords, actually a polyp and a nodule, so like one polyp. They are like callouses basically, there because of all the yelling, sc...
Don Dea's insight:

More eye contact. People have to look at me when I’m talking or they can’t hear me. This, in an age where everyone is trying to be all on their phone all the time is AWESOME. And more intimate too.

Everything got quieter in my home. Whether it’s my kids, hubby or people who visit (we’re like Grand Central Station come holiday time) everyone takes it down a notch. Not sure for how long I will find it charming that everyone matches their volume to mine but for now it’s cute.

Physically, I get to be closer to everyone. The boys snuggle up to chat or Jeremy sits next to me, #winning.

No more interrupting. This one is really nice. With five very loud members in our family and many more visiting, conversations are easier when everyone has to pay attention and can’t randomly interrupt. Sometimes the loudest wins. When I get interrupted, I simply throw things (lightweight things, sheesh).

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Be Humble and Teachable to Lay the Foundation of Success

Be Humble and Teachable to Lay the Foundation of Success | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Lay the building blocks of success through humility Having launched 10 companies in my life time, I have tasted both success and failure. I have awards on my wall and scars on my back to prove it.
Don Dea's insight:

Be a good listener

Exceptional workers, managers and leaders are great listeners. Consider this interesting observation; we are not listening nor learning when we’re speaking. Being a quality listener requires personal discipline and a high regard for others. The best leaders I have ever known were patient people who listened attentively to an associate and only asked questions for clarification. They never lectured or pontificated. They sought to learn and gain new knowledge by being quiet. They eagerly took notes and added in the margins new and unique epiphanies. Successful business leaders know how to carefully listen to customers, employees and advisers.

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The Abstraction Method of Problem Solving

Need a boost of creativity? Get some distance.
Don Dea's insight:

You focus on their clear ability to play their instrument, but you do not think about all of the years of practice that musician has put in to develop the skill displayed on stage.

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If Something Feels ‘Off’ It Probably Is

If Something Feels ‘Off’ It Probably Is | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Don Dea's insight:

I messed up – big time. I knew deep in my gut something had to be wrong, but for some reason, I didn’t have a frank, direct conversation with Joseph. During our numerous status meetings, I had accepted his rationalizations of a hectic travel schedule, numerous new team members, and uncooperative clients to justify his less-than stellar performance.  I asked myself regularly:  Why wasn’t he performing to the level I knew he could? Why wasn’t he communicating with the other team members? Why was his department falling behind schedule? Even though I had asked myself these questions, I didn’t ask them of him. I allowed my prior work history and knowledge of his expertise and abilities to cloud reality. I allowed myself to glaze over the reality that a star performer wasn’t performing like a star anymore.  In addition, I accepted his rationalizations too long; other team members were now frustrated and their projects were being negatively impacted because of his lack of input on critical issues.

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What motivates us at work? 7 fascinating studies that give insights

What motivates us at work? 7 fascinating studies that give insights | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Dan Ariely studies what motivates us when it comes to our work. Here a look at 3 of his studies—and 3 from other researchers.
Don Dea's insight:

When you look carefully at the way people work, he says, you find out there’s a lot more at play—and a lot more at stake—than money. In his talk, Ariely provides evidence that we are also driven by meaningful work, by others’ acknowledgement and by the amount of effort we’ve put in: the harder the task is, the prouder we are.

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Amazon Announces the Most Well-Read Cities in the USA

Amazon Announces the Most Well-Read Cities in the USA | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Don Dea's insight:

Amazon has pulled together all the book, magazine, and newspaper sales data  for the past 9 months and created a list of the US cities with that bought the most content on a per capita basis. The top 20 cities include a suburb of DC, 5 cities in Florida, and a sprinkling of cities from the other 49 states. Amazon’s home town of Seattle made the list:

  1. Alexandria, Va.
  2. Knoxville, Tenn.
  3. Miami, Fla.
  4. Cambridge, Mass.
  5. Orlando, Fla.
  6. Ann Arbor, Mich.
  7. Berkeley, Calif.
  8. Cincinnati, Ohio
  9. Columbia, S.C.
  10. Pittsburgh, Penn.
  11. St. Louis, Mo.
  12. Salt Lake City, Utah
  13. Seattle, Wash.
  14. Vancouver, Wash.
  15. Gainesville, Fla.
  16. Atlanta, Ga.
  17. Dayton, Ohio
  18. Richmond, Va.
  19. Clearwater, Fla.
  20. Tallahassee, Fla.
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No, E-book Sales Are Not Declining

No, E-book Sales Are Not Declining | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Check out this blog post by Nathan Bransford, the author of the Jacob Wonderbar series
Don Dea's insight:

An idea has taken root in the bookosphere that e-book sales have peaked as the people who want e-books buy e-books and the people who want print continue to buy print. This may be spurred along by a January article by Nicholas Carr arguing that the e-book bubble has burst.

This is not remotely the case. E-book sales aren't declining. E-book sales percentage growth is declining. These are two very, very different things.

The 6.2% rise in book sales in 2012 were propelled to an increase by e-book sales, and in fact, e-book sales for children's books more than doubled. E-book sales were up 41% in 2012. This is less in percentage terms than the exponential 100%+ growth that was seen in previous years, but it still represents a significant rise in sales.

What is misleading about fixating on percentage growth is that it's looking at a market that started at zero five years ago.

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The Strategic Plan is Dead. Long Live Strategy

The Strategic Plan is Dead. Long Live Strategy | digitalNow | Scoop.it
In today’s fast-changing world, why freeze your strategic thinking in a five-year plan?
Don Dea's insight:

adaptive strategy. We create a roadmap of the terrain that lies before an organization and develop a set of navigational tools, realizing that there will be many different options for reaching the destination. If necessary, the destination itself may shift based on what we learn along the way.

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Facebook's Mission Statement

Facebook's Mission Statement | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Don Dea's insight:

Facebook's mission statement claims it wants to make the world a more open and connected place. However, given light of recent events like Facebook blocking Vine's access to finding friends, we came up with a corrected version of the statement.

Social media is all about openness and sharing. But when Facebook blocks every app that competes with any of its multiple services, like MessageMe, the mission is constantly being undermined. Is Facebook really looking to make the world more open and connected? Or have they become another evil corporation willing to do anything to improve profits?

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SoLoMo in Action: Fixing My Sump Pump

SoLoMo in Action: Fixing My Sump Pump | digitalNow | Scoop.it
Don Dea's insight:

The sump pump experience helped me realize that SoLoMo is a two-way street: turning to the Internet for needs discovery, I was able to leverage the consumer product reviews and real-time inventory updates found on Home Depot’s interactive website to select the right product for my needs, saving me time and money; easy access to YouTube via my mobile device allowed me to leverage the knowledge of others at no cost and at my own convenience.

Prior to SoLoMo, I would’ve spent hours waiting to shell out hundreds of dollars on a plumber; with SoLoMo, I didn’t make it to work early as initially planned, but I did make it on time.

The only negative? It would’ve been nice to take a few laps in that old canoe of mine

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