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12 Ways to Maintain Highly Functional Teams

This article is written by regular contributor Karl Burgher.

In these next couple of blogs we will chat about how to maintain highly functional and healthy teams. After a great team is built—it needs continued care and maintenance. (In case you missed it, you may want to check out our earlier post “12 Steps to Creating Great Volunteer Teams.”)

Just as a garden needs tending, so do teams. Even if we started well, understood the dynamics and made good choices, human nature can often take us down a slippery slope. This can happen quite quickly when projects start to go south due to some external issue. Or when one bad apple enters the fray. We need to be vigilant in our tending, i.e., our day in and day out attitude and active management. (more…)

13 tips to keep your computer safe from intruders

Keep your computer safe with the “Good Digital Hygiene” ebook

The internet has certainly made our lives easier and more comfortable. Just think of web services, such as online takeaway ordering or online grocery purchases which can be carried out with one click and delivered to your doorstep. On the other hand most of us know how annoying it is when your device catches a virus and stops working, resulting in a loss of your data.

Data can also go missing through actual offline theft, how many of us have had their smartphone or laptop stolen in recent years? And even if we manage to keep our electronic devices safe they might still be vulnerable to hacking attacks or malware.

Bookboon author Dr Eduardo Gelbstein, Senior Fellow of the Diplo Foundation and faculty member at Webster University, Geneva, Switzerland, has gathered the following 13 precaution measures to keep your computer save from malicious software in his ebook “Good Digital Hygiene”. Some of those guidelines might sound like common sense but let’s be honest, when was the last time you make a backup of your hard drive? Following these easy guidelines for digital hygiene will help to keep your device clean from malware and viruses and protect your data from being lost.


The relationship between distractions and writing

How to Write Your First Novel
This is a guest article by Gay Walley.

On the surface, distractions and writing are mortal enemies.  Most writers think their best ideas or prose comes just as they’re walking out the door!    There is no question that writers need quiet, time alone, an expanse of time to get our work done.  There is no question that those moments when walking or listening to classical music can elucidate an idea that has been rambling around in our heads. (more…)

Communication: what can we learn from animals?

Fundamentals of communication, P.R. and leadership
This is an article by Georgios P. Piperopoulos.

All living organisms communicate, in ways appropriate to each species, transferring information relating to food supplies or warning of impending dangers thus serving the survival of the group or colony.

The communication channels and media used include pheromones which are communication hormones or other types of chemical signalling, dancing, vocal expressions and body language among monkeys, felines and canines.

For humans the communication process involves more intricate verbal as well as non-verbal and written messages and relies less on pheromones, chemicals and body language as is the case in the lower rungs of the phylogenetic scale. (more…)

Find you inner motivation

Find your personal source for motivation!

What motivates you? It is one of the most difficult questions, we usually only get asked at job interviews. The common answer is: money, a promotion, perspectives to grow within the enterprise – to summarise it, the opportunity to develop ourselves or our budget, or both.

What helps me to motivate myself and avoid an unproductive day is to focus on a task I really enjoy and finish it. Once something has been accomplished it is usually easier to start working on not so exciting things. If you have troubles focusing on something, start with easy and monotonous tasks to get your mind in working mood.

However, work is not the only place where motivation is important.
Doing sports for example requires a lot of motivation when getting started. How many times this week have you promised yourself this week to go for a run or hit the gym after work? And what happens if we cannot meet over own expectations? We feel frustrated, out of control and might even get angry with ourselves.


The World is abuzz with Mindfulness

Uncovering Mindfulness
This is a guest article by Paul Mudd.

London, Paris, New York, Munich – Everybody’s talking about it!

In the UK an All Party Parliamentary group has been set-up to look at the implications for future public policy across healthcare, social justice, education and in the workplace. In the USA, a Hollywood actress has teamed up with a group of neuroscientists to introduce a Mindfulness programme into schools and it’s being rolled-out in the UK with ten schools to date, as well. (more…)

Weird Job Interview Questions And Answers – Part 4

Time To Find A New Job
This article is written by Gavin Redelman.

1) How many cows are in Canada?

This type of brainteaser question was asked by Google as an interview question for a local data quality evaluator position. There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong answer to this question. The hiring manager wants to know if you are able to apply logical reasoning to go about finding the answer to the question. They are looking for how you go about solving it and how your thought process works. Think about what significance the question might have to the role you are applying for. Then consider all the factors that might influence the answer and give a step-by-step account of what you would need to figure out in order to solve the problem. (more…)

Swets crisis: Alternative eLibrary solution

Bookboon eLibrary
Bookboon’s eLibrary, the most simple and effective solution in the market.

We at Bookboon have heard about the difficult times that Swets is currently going through, and understand the challenges this provides for employees and customers affected by this unfortunate situation.

Bookboon is one of the obvious alternatives for Swets clients, as we have the capacity and are very happy to help them in their transition.

Thanks to the Bookboon eLibrary, which includes an extensive portfolio of over 400 quality business eBooks, we offer an ideal alternative to Swets.

Bookboon is the world’s largest eBook publisher, and focuses on high-quality educational books for business professionals.

We specialize in helping clients with internal training, education, and development of employees. (more…)

What it takes to achieve team success

This is an article by regular Bookboon contributor Karl Burgher.

This is part II of last week’s article 5 Ways to achieve team success.

A Better Paradigm via Our Choices

In Figure 2 below, we have changed the “bad” headings from Figure 1 to “inexperienced,” giving confused folks the benefit of the doubt. Moving two or more of the quadrants into a higher probability of success is not only desirable, but entirely possible through good choices! (more…)

In the flow: finding the reason to go creative

Creativity at Work
This is a guest post by Alan Barker.

Creative work isn’t like operational work. Being creative is not about doing the same thing better; it’s about finding something new. Forget continuous improvement; think innovation.

Real creativity is self-motivated. We’re driven by the challenge itself: by the intrinsic enjoyment and satisfaction of creating, by the thrill of the risk. We go on the creative journey because we want to go.

Of course, it helps if your organization actively manages creativity, separately from its operational work. If it supports idea development, manages risk and tolerates (or even celebrates) failure, then going creative will come more easily. Research by Teresa Amabile suggests that many operational features of organisations can seriously inhibit creativity: performance reviews, excessive supervision, rules and protocols. (more…)