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5 Great TED Talks for Work Motivation

At work it’s completely normal for happiness, productivity, and motivation to ebb and flow. There are days when everything seems to go right: you complete your assignment early and receive a glowing review from your boss, and then there are days when it all seems to go wrong: you’re late to your meeting, mess up a call, and forget about a deadline. If you seem to be having a string of not-so-great days, perhaps it’s time to look for a little inspiration. Here are several TED Talks to help you get started.

“How Great Leaders Inspire Action” by Simon Sinek
Leadership expert, Simon Sinek, is famous in the business world and for a good reason. In this TED Talk, he explains how great leaders think, act, and communicate all by starting with the question “why?” He presents a simple model called the golden circle and asking the questions: why, how, and what.

“What Makes Us Feel Good About Our Work?” by Dan Ariely
In this talk, Dan Ariely looks at what makes us happy and feel good about our work. He explains that it’s not necessarily money or joy that we are looking for, but a feeling of making constant progress towards our work goals and feeling like we have a sense of purpose in the workplace.

“The Puzzle of Motivation” by Dan Pink
Author and motivation expert Dan Pink shares that intrinsic motivators, which is the desire to do more for personal reasons, are what motivates employees and makes businesses stronger. He speaks of autonomy, mastery, and purpose and how incorporating these three things into your company culture is the key to success.

“Let’s Make Work Better” by Theresa Glomb
Theresa Glomb, is an American academic, and in this TED Talk she explains how to make good things happen more frequently at work, and 3 strategies that will make you happier in the workplace. Some key takeaways from her speech are to gripe less and celebrate more, quit multitasking, and to help others.

“The Power of Vulnerability” by Brené Brown
Shame and vulnerability researcher, Brené Brown, gives a powerful speech on the importance of vulnerability in your personal and professional life. In one of the most widely circulated TED Talks, she explains that vulnerability takes courage and how to show up, face your fears, and move forward.

5 Great TED Talks for Work Motivation

Mindfulness Hacks to Boost Your Productivity

During a time when it seems there are more distractions than ever, you may find yourself continually getting off course. Whether you’re working remotely and juggling Zoom calls while overseeing your children’s remote learning, or if you’re in the office and getting distracted with social media or the news, it’s common to lose focus throughout the day. One way to combat that is through mindfulness. Now if you’re intimidated by that idea don’t be. It’s simply being present and fully engaged with what you are doing in the moment. Here are some quick mindfulness tips that will go a long way in boosting your productivity and improving your focus.

Clear Your Head and Go for a Walk

Sometimes one of the best ways to reset is to change your environment, head outside and go for a quick walk. If you’re in the office, take a short 5-minute break and go for a walk around your office building. If you’re working remotely, schedule a walk or two to break up your day; ideally before you begin work, on your lunch break, or at the end of the day. You don’t need long to reap the benefits of a little fresh air and sunshine.

Have a Change of Scenery
It’s important to give your eyes a rest from your computer screen, especially if you’re working on something like spreadsheets, so remember to look up from your screen regularly. If you have a nice view outside, take a minute to look out and appreciate the seasons changing. If you don’t have a window nearby, keep photos or a painting at your desk that you love and transport yourself briefly to the positive memories those mementos take you.

Write It Out
If you find yourself frazzled, it can be helpful to keep a journal where you’re able to jot down what is on your mind. This should bring clarity and help you better focus on the task at hand. Many also find it helpful to keep a to-do list, noting the most important tasks they need to accomplish. For some though, this may not be enough, which brings us to the next tip.

Practice Time Blocking
With time blocking, you schedule your day into intervals where each block of time is dedicated to accomplishing a certain task. It’s a step further then a to-do list, and not only tells you what you need to do, but when you are going to do it. Having a concrete schedule can save you from distractions and by focusing on one task at a time, you’ll be more productive and less stressed.

Meditate or Focus on Your Breath
With a variety of methods and techniques, many find meditation and/or breathwork to be very beneficial. One extremely simple, yet effective, breath method is to take a slow breath in through your nose, breathing in the air from your belly rather than your chest. Once you’ve breathed in, pause for a moment before slowly exhaling the air through your mouth. Repeat this as many times as needed. Even 3 rounds of this breath work should leave you feeling much calmer.

Everyone can benefit from being more mindful and staying present and aware of the moment they are in. We hope these tips are helpful for you and bring more focus, less stress, and more enjoyment to your work day.

Mindfulness Hacks to Boost Your Productivity

Morning Tips to Have Your Most Productive Day

Your mornings set the tone for the day, so if you can establish a few positive morning habits it will go a long way in helping you have an inspired and productive day. We recently wrote about the importance of a morning ritual and in today’s blog we’ll give you some real life examples and tips to implement.  That said, don’t feel like these need to be set in stone. Days differ, and depending on who is in your household (i.e. children, pets) you may have to adapt and modify these tips to make them work best for you.

The Early Bird Catches the Worm
Starting your day rushed can leads to feeling frazzled and disorganized. While prioritizing sleep is certainly important, going to bed late and sleeping in, is not a recipe for success. Plan ahead. Do your best to go to bed at a reasonable time and plan on waking up 10-15 minutes earlier then you normally do. Use the time to wake up at a slower, more leisurely pace. You may spend the extra tip savoring your coffee, spending a few minutes meditating, or simply taking a moment to think about your day ahead before jumping out of bed. When you give yourself extra time in the morning you’ll feel more relaxed throughout the day.

Everyone knows the importance of exercise and the endorphins and positive affects a workout can bring. Studies show that if you’re able to get in a workout in the morning you improve focus and mental abilities all day long. There are numerous other benefits to a morning workout such as better sleep, stronger sense of self discipline, and reaching your fitness goals faster. If you don’t have time for a full workout at the gym, even a 20-minute walk to begin your day will make a big difference.

Plan It Out
Think about what you need to accomplish each day and write out your top 3 priorities. Having a list will help you stay focused and on track. It’s easy to get off course throughout the day when you find yourself pulled in many directions, but it helps to have a list nearby of a few must-do tasks to steer you back on track and remind you of your priorities.

Practice Gratitude
Practicing gratitude is another practical tool to starting your day off on a positive note. There are many ways to incorporate gratitude, either as a solitary practice such as writing down a few things you are grateful for, or as a shared experience such as emailing a co-worker expressing your appreciation for something they did. Practicing gratitude will positively affect you in many ways. Harvard Business Review found that gratitude increases self-control, patience, and honesty. Additionally, it has also been shown to increase productivity. A Stanford study found that managers who expressed their gratitude to their employees generated 50% more productivity.

There is no better time to implement a few positive habits in your morning routine to start your day off on the right note. We hope these suggestions are helpful for you and perhaps inspire you to either implement them or create your own version and make a habit out of it. What you do on a daily basis will make the biggest difference, compared to an elaborate routine you only do once in a long while. Adopt what habits you can now and practice them consistently.

Morning Tips to Have Your Most Productive Day

Tips for Job Hunting in the Age of COVID-19

It’s been about eight months since COVID-19 hit the US, and while the job market has improved in recent months, layoffs are still ongoing, and hiring is not what it was a year ago. For job seekers, especially those who lost their job early in the pandemic, things may feel like they’ve reached a stalemate. Don’t lose hope though. While hiring may be slower, it is still happening and below we’ll provide some tips on things to consider while job hunting during this pandemic.

Let your LinkedIn network know you’re looking for work and see what open roles they may know of. If there is a company you’re interested in working at, see if any of your 1st degree connections know of anyone that works there, and ask them for an introduction. Along the same lines, make sure and utilize LinkedIn’s filter for your profile photo that lets hiring managers and employers know that you're on the job market. LinkedIn also has a variety of professional groups you can join that can help extend your online network.

Get help from a recruiter
Get in touch with a local recruiter, such as those at SNI Companies, who can help with your job search. Recruiters will know the market and the best companies hiring in your area and can take you further on your career search than you’d get alone. Recruiters may refer you to roles you wouldn’t have otherwise known about and make the process faster and easier.

Set up job alerts
Most companies and job search websites (such as Indeed, CareerBuilder, and LinkedIn) have the option to sign up for notifications when new roles come available. Be sure to utilize these alerts so you can be one of the first people to apply when a fitting role pops up. When you do apply for roles, make sure you modify your resume as needed to highlight the skills and roles you’ve had and tailor it to match the job description and fit in line with the company culture.

Be open
It’s important to also think about what type of companies are hiring and be open to roles in new industries. If you’ve always worked in retail for instance, those roles may not be as abundant as something in the technology world. See what transferable skills you have and expand your search. As an example, if you were doing something in retail, think about the customer relationship skills you developed and see if there are any administrative roles in any industry that would be a good match.

Tips for Job Hunting in the Age of COVID-19