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Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues
An online magazine by Bovee & Thill, authors of the leading textbooks in business communication and business writing, featuring resources about workplace issues. For more information about Bovee & Thill texts and the exclusive, superior coverage they give to workplace issues, visit their blog: http://boveeandthillbusinesscommunicationblog.com. For instructor examination copies, go to http://blog.businesscommunicationnetwork.com/texts,  or write to samplingdept@pearson.com. To find your local sales representative, go to http://www.pearsonhighered.com/educator/replocator. To contact the authors, send an email to hotline@businesscommunicationblog.com. To get a free Comprehensive Guide to Business Communication Instructional Resources, visit http://blog.businesscommunicationnetwork.com/resources. Subscribe to a free weekly newsletter of new posts to all 10 of Bovee & Thill's Online Magazines: http://sco.lt/8kgeVV.
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Don't Worry About What You Can't Control

Don't Worry About What You Can't Control | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

This is lesson #48 from my book Little Things Matter, 100 Ways to Improve Your Life Today.

If you are like most people you probably spend more time worrying than you should. Worrying about job security, project deadlines, health, shrinking budgets, rising taxes, the housing market, world poverty, our children’s safety, even the weather. Some things we can control, others we clearly cannot. The key to maintaining a positive attitude in life is to know the difference.

I heard years ago that 92 percent of the things people worry about are beyond their control.

If you are troubled about something you can control, like whether you are going to lose your job, then step up your game. Come in early, stay late, offer to work on a weekend, or volunteer to take on additional responsibilities; do anything you can think of to increase your value. If you end up losing your job, you can bet you’ll get a better reference...


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7 Ways to Inspire Yourself

7 Ways to Inspire Yourself | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Thinking is great. But action makes things happen. One of the biggest differences with people that successfully grow, expand themselves, and reach their goals, is that they consistently take action.

 

Action takes energy though, so where does that energy come from? It comes from within. Inspiration is a powerful force, and inspired action is one of the most powerful ways to motivate yourself. It beats “carrots and sticks.” Carrots and sticks are usually external forms of motivation. Instead, if you inspire yourself, you light your fire from the inside out.


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7 Symptoms of Procrastination and How to Fight Them

7 Symptoms of Procrastination and How to Fight Them | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

We all do it to some degree or another; put off for tomorrow what we know should be done today. Postpone the inevitable pain for the current moment of pleasure. But we know that even if we can manage to put it out of our minds for the present, it will eventually come around and bite us on the butt and disturb our external calm demeanor.

 

Below are some of the symptoms of a Procrastinator and the remedies to try.

 

1. Lack of Vision
Not having a clear vision for the future is one of the biggest reasons people procrastinate. If you can’t see the benefits of completing certain tasks why would you bother starting them?
Remedy: Have a clear picture of all that needs to be achieved and the reasons why, you are much more likely to be motivated to get going and get things done...


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Persuasion Skills: How to Get What You Want

Persuasion Skills: How to Get What You Want | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Last week I was at the grocery store when my three-year old toddler asked, “Daddy, I want that chocolate ice cream.” I suppose it was more a demand than a question. When I refused to put the chocolate ice cream in our cart, he quickly turned up his volume by about 100 decibels, and made his demand again. The last thing I wanted was to create a scene at the grocery store, so I gave in and placed the ice cream in the cart. He was very persuasive.

 

If you’re not a toddler, then screaming at the top of your lungs would probably not be very effective. But whether you want to admit it, we persuade people on a daily basis. In fact, we have to persuade people quite often to get what we want. I want you to read this article, so I started out with a relatable anecdote about persuasion to get you hooked. Did it persuade you to continue reading? If you want to upgrade your own persuasion skills, keep reading!...


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The Surprising Key to Getting Things Done

The Surprising Key to Getting Things Done | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

There’s no point in getting more efficient at doing things that don’t need to be done. -Jan Jasper

 

Before you start making a schedule, organizing a task list, setting deadlines, gathering materials, delegating, prioritizing, and so on, stop and do this first.

 

- Write down your top five goals for your business in the next five years, say, or just in the next year. Make it long-term enough to pull your perspective out of the current crisis or negative cash flow or whatever it is that is screaming “URGENT” at you.
- Now, with those five goals in front of you, list backwards the actions you need to take. In other words, start with the ultimate goal and work your way back from there to where you are now...


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Four Procrastination Myths Debunked

Four Procrastination Myths Debunked | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it
This article debunks four common procrastination myths we often tell ourselves in order to avoid doing the hard work that needs to be done.

 

There are less than one hundred days left in 2011.
If you have a backlog of projects that you meant to work on this year, but which you haven’t gotten around to, it’s very likely that procrastination is the culprit.


Timothy Pychyl, Ph.D., creator of the popular web site procrastination.ca, is one of the world’s foremost experts on procrastination. Dr. Pychyl defines procrastination as “the needless, often irrational, voluntary delay of an intended task”. That is, you intend to work on a task but you go off and start working on something else which you know is not as important, and which doesn’t need to get done right away...


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Honesty: The Best Policy for The Best Productivity

Honesty: The Best Policy for The Best Productivity | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it
The best way to produce quality results that ring try with what matters to you involves a simple step: be honest with yourself.

 

There are many tools you can use to increase your level of productivity. Whether paper-based solutions are your cup of tea or you’ve dove into the digital well of task management offerings, you’d be wasting a ton of time trying to discover all of the tools out there. I’d wager it is one of the least productive things you could ever do.

 

But of all the tools at your disposal, the one between your ears is the one that needs to be actively engaged to allow for prominent increases to happen. There’s a human component that leads to better productivity on the whole, and while analog tools may not remove the brain from the equasion as fully as digital ones might, when we trust our lists as written without using our brain in tandem, the results for the items that are crucial to us are less desirable...


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How to Be the Best At Everything You Do

How to Be the Best At Everything You Do | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

“Be The Best – At Everything You Do”


Every single time I’ve said this to someone, they come back with an argument:

 

“But how can I be the best in the world at everything? Or even anything?”

 

I then explain and clarify: “I never said ‘best in the world’. I only said ‘be the best’.“

 

So, what’s the difference?

 

One is comparing yourself with everyone else in your universe, and engaging in a futile struggle to be ‘better’ than them. The other is only looking within at yourself – and asking “Did I give it my all? Could I have done more?”

 

Look, in the ultimate analysis, there is only so much you, me, or anybody else can do. We all come with our built-in limitations, restrictions and boundaries. No matter how eager and determined he is, a man without legs cannot win the world high jump competition, and a lady without eyesight can’t shoot brilliant world-class photographs...


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7 Ways to Deal with Challenges

7 Ways to Deal with Challenges | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

We are all faced with challenges constantly in every area of our lives. Most people have a hard time accepting and dealing with these challenges that arise. The truth is that you will have to deal with difficult problems throughout your life, whether it is in your personal life or career. Most of us get really afraid and run away from problems because we don’t want to accept reality the way it is.

 

Running away from your problems is the worst thing you can do to deal with the challenges you are faced with. I have some tips for you below on learning how to deal with everyday challenges. Start now and develop the self-discipline to practice the below points...


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Work Motivation in Just 12 Steps

Work Motivation in Just 12 Steps | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

No matter how much you love your job, there are times when your work motivation is just going to bottom out. There can be any number of reasons for this but the important thing is that it does happen to everyone at some stage. If you follow the simple tips I’m sharing here, you can regain your motivation and achieve a new sense of drive that you’ve been sorely missing:


1. Be Honest With Yourself
Admit that you’re lacking motivation and that you need to do something about it. Honesty is always, always the best policy...


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27 Productivity Killers: Why Nothing Ever Gets Done!

27 Productivity Killers: Why Nothing Ever Gets Done! | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

There is always more to do than time in which to do it. And the more you take on, the more there is to do. You finish one task and six more pop out of no where; it never ends. To toss a major understatement at you - you need to invest your time wisely and that means being productive.

 

Yes, the dreaded 'P' word. Easier said than done, that's for sure. Sometimes, you just aren’t productive. You want to be, but things seem to never get done.

 

Here’s why...

 

What Kills Productivity?
There are only a few broad reasons why your productivity could be suffering. I’ll talk about all the specific instances in a moment, but let’s start with a high-level look:  . . .


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How Can You Balance Creativity and Productivity in the Workplace?

How Can You Balance Creativity and Productivity in the Workplace? | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

For many, creativity and productivity seem mutually exclusive. Find out how to (How can you balance creativity and productivity in the workplace? . . .


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TURN YOUR LIFE AROUND: 14 Ways To Make Better Decisions and Strengthen Your Willpower

TURN YOUR LIFE AROUND: 14 Ways To Make Better Decisions and Strengthen Your Willpower | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

The New Year is a reminder that we're our own worst enemies. In fact, a study of one million people around the world revealed that most people believe self-control is their biggest weakness.


But willpower is like a muscle: it can be strengthened — and fatigued — with use. . .


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Do You Make These 8 Personal Development Mistakes?

Do You Make These 8 Personal Development Mistakes? | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Most people suck at improving themselves. Even when they’re trying their hardest to become a better person, they wind up running on the dreaded personal development hamster wheel – hours of effort, zero results.

 

It’s not because they’re stupid. It’s not because they’re lazy. It’s definitely not because it’s not possible. It’s because they’re making the mistakes that most people make when they’re trying to change their life for the better. That’s why there’s so many people reading self-help blogs, self-help books, and taking self-help classes and yet so few people making a meaningful and lasting difference.

 

So here’s a list of the eight most common (and most damaging) mistakes that people make in personal development.

 

Are you guilty of any of these?...


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10 Things You Need to Do to Be Supremely Productive

10 Things You Need to Do to Be Supremely Productive | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

We live in a busy world. Whether you’re looking around online or off, there’s “stuff” going on all around us. Some of us are trying to keep up and some of us aren’t. Either way, both parties are inevitably going to miss out on some of this “stuff” I’m alluding to. And that’s because we all need to look at not only why we’re missing out, but how we can avoid missing out on as much as we do. This is when levels of personal productivity come into play.

So, how do you “level up” your personal productivity? Well, here are 10 things that you need to do to be supremely productive.


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Here's One Way to Quickly Increase Your Confidence and Reduce Anxiety

Here's One Way to Quickly Increase Your Confidence and Reduce Anxiety | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

The present study examined the effects of motivational self-talk on self-confidence, anxiety, and task performance in young athletes . . .

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How to Stay On Task--Every Day!

How to Stay On Task--Every Day! | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Do you have trouble staying focused?

 

Whether you work for yourself or for an employer, spending hours surfing the net and updating your Facebook profile won’t get you any closer to your goals ... yet you find it hard to keep on-task.

 

Even when you do try to concentrate, you might get to 5pm and feel like you’ve not accomplished anything.

 

Here’s how to stay focused and get more done – every day.

 

Minimize Interruptions
If you live alone and work from home, interruptions are unlikely to be a big problem. If you work in a busy office and your job involves a lot of reactive tasks, like answering phone calls or emails from clients, you might be getting interrupted every few minutes...


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Get What Matters Done by Scheduling Time Blocks

Get What Matters Done by Scheduling Time Blocks | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it
Want to get the stuff done that really matters? Boost your productivity and lessen distractions by scheduling them in time blocks.

 

The demands on our time are greater now than ever before. With information coming at us faster than we can digest it, responsibilities handed to us faster than we can handle them and communication moving at breakneck speed, finding ways to fit as much as possible into your day is a daunting task to say the least. But there is a way to get more done of what you want and need with less distraction, and it’s a strategy that you likely employ for some things already.


You have to schedule stuff. Not just the appointment-specific stuff, but all of the stuff that matters. You can do that by scheduling time blocks.

 

The one great equalizer that all of humanity has is time. No one has twenty-five hours in their day; we all have twenty-four. How we choose to use those hours is what separates us. By scheduling the stuff that matters (from the urgent to the crucial), you’ll be spending those hours far more wisely. In addition, you’ll be living your days proactively rather than reactively...


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Steve Jobs — 10 Lessons in Life & Leadership

Steve Jobs — 10 Lessons in Life & Leadership | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it
There will never be another Steve Jobs. His parting gift to the world are 10 lessons we can all use in life and leadership. Steve Jobs lessons in digital leadership.

 

Digital Leadership

 

It is a sad day for the world when a visionary like Steve Jobs is no longer walking among us. It truly reminds all of us how short and precious life is. Just like there will never be another Socrates, Wayne Gretzky, Winston Churchill, or Ghandi, there will never be another Steve Jobs. While we can never become Steve Jobs, nor should we strive to be (follow your heart). What we can do is understand what is the greatness of Steve Jobs and, where applicable, apply these principals to help us develop as leaders...


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5 Great Questions to Ask Yourself After a Failure

5 Great Questions to Ask Yourself After a Failure | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Let’s face it. We all fail.


As we go through life we have relationships that don’t work out, jobs that just aren’t right, exams that we flunk, initiatives that don’t succeed. The more new things we try the more failures we are likely to have. In fact, the only way to avoid failure is to do nothing new.

 

The important thing is how we deal with failure. It can be part of a downward slide in which lack of confidence reinforces feelings of inadequacy and incompetence. But experiencing failure can be a learning experience and an opportunity for a fresh start. A good way to begin this process is by asking yoruself some tough questions...


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Conversation Agent: The 12 Habits of Highly Connective People

Conversation Agent: The 12 Habits of Highly Connective People | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

I started the day watching this video from Gel 2011. I love stories like Anil Dash's because I experienced myself the power of networks. Especially after moving continents and starting from zero, alone.

 

Few things give you more joy than doing a good deed. Often that goodness comes from introducing someone to something or someone else, and that someone else doing the same -- and so on. We need to do this, more of it if we're already doing it.

 

Understanding the importance and power of networks, combined with new tools is our lifeline. We have the ability to transform businesses and institutions, and a need to undertake that transformation. I hope you got goose bumps from the video.

 

That's what true connections can do.


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29 Reasons Stopping You Moving Forward

29 Reasons Stopping You Moving Forward | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Today I want to share some of the truths I have learned over the years that have stopped me moving forward in life.


Do any of these ring true for you?

 

1. Perfection – Perfection does not exist. If you accept that everything can be improved upon then perfection cannot exist. Give up the concept of being perfect and get on with your life as best you can.
2. Waiting for the right time – The right time is now, why put it off. If you’ve been waiting for the right time for something and haven’t taken action yet, it’s going to be difficult to start...


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Do You Have the Courage to Be Honest?

Do You Have the Courage to Be Honest? | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

If honesty is really the best policy then why is there so much deception? And if we feel disrespected when someone isn’t honest with us, then how can we justify those little white lies and carefully crafted exaggerations?

 

If we expect other people to have the courage to be honest with us, then wouldn’t anything but honesty from us be promoting a double standard? Maybe it’s time to take a closer look at honesty and see if it really is the best policy.

 

Being honest about honesty

On the surface, the concept of honesty seems simple enough. All we have to do is tell the truth in every situation, right? Then why is it that otherwise truthful people will justify distorting the truth in certain situations? If being honest makes life simpler then why would anyone purposely complicate things by being even slightly dishonest?...


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The Mother of All Excuses – I CAN’T

The Mother of All Excuses – I CAN’T | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Making excuses is a bad habit that anyone can slip into. I’ve done it, you’ve done it, and now it’s time to get passed it. Sometimes we make excuses because we are trying to be polite, or at least that’s what we tell ourselves. Maybe somebody invites us to do something that we really don’t want to do. So, we politely say, “I would really like to, but I just can’t today.”

 

Why do we do that? Why not just say, “No thanks”?

 

The funny thing about making excuses is that we can always come up with excuses for why we do it. That’s pathetic when you think about it. If we want other people to be honest with us, shouldn’t we start by respecting others enough to be honest with them?..


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Is Fear Holding You Back?

Is Fear Holding You Back? | Teaching Business Communication and Workplace Issues | Scoop.it

Most people have areas in their lives where they would like to make some improvements. Is that true of you? Would you like to be in better shape physically, emotionally, mentally or financially?

 

That’s a lot of territory, I know. Perhaps you would like to make some positive changes in all those areas. Well, you are certainly not alone. I think all of us feel we have room for improvement in all those areas of life, I certainly do.

 

So what’s the problem?

 

If we see things in our life that we want to change, then what is it that is holding us back from doing it? Why don’t we just make the desired changes? Questions like that can sure give birth to a huge list of excuses, can’t they? . . .


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