A TEXT POST

v.isdom

Isn’t our so called wisdom just silly?

If wisdom is understanding, then it is quite inaccurate for any human being to call himself wise. True is none of us knows everything. So our understanding reaches level where we know exactly what we know, and kind of realizing vast space of things we don’t know. It is basically admitting that because we don’t know so much we should be expecting anything and be preparing for what we know to possibly wrong.
Following that principle we should consider questions like what if there is no magical power that have created us, what if spiritual world if just creation of our own human brain over the millennia. What if our expectation of “more” are created by us, not because there is actually something “more”?


What if we all living in delusion created within 5000 years by evolution of human consciousness and emotions built by our unconsciousness trying to fill out empty space in order to have peace of mind? Literary it is like “making up” stories that kind of fit into what we know in order to achieve sense of understanding and knowing. Are we just fulfilling “empty” areas of “explanations” with delusional believes? What if our biological existence is strongly misunderstood by vast number of generations incapable to answer basic questions of whom we are and where we come from?

What if that is true. Does this mean there is nothing more beside what we are able to create or destroy? Universe will follow its natural path independently of us. We cannot influence by nothing. Nothing but evolving technologically and mentally, broadening our areas of understanding each other’s and forces surrounding us.

And more importantly where are we going? What future will bring? One we know for sure. In very far future our sun will “die”, our universe will expand and eventually collapse. But this is all far beyond limit of human kind survivor resources. Will time travel be possible by then? Will biological death be treating no more? Will it be possible to influence those mystic powers ruling the universe?

Possibly time will bring the end of universe, but before that our weak biological form might cease to exist anyway. Everything our body needs to survive is limited resource. And looking on our behaviors, desires and so on, we are rather closer to our original “animalistic” form of existence. It is still quite a journey to pure non-biological or spiritual existence form. Even by looking into closer future we have to ask: what are our chances? What if we going into the future that we are creating for yourself right now? Every step we take, every discovery we make might save or destroy life we know. But there is no way knowing if it will, is there?

Wise person would ask what if all of above is also not quite right? Quite strangely enough are living with this paradox telling us that realizing how much we don’t know is wise.
I would say take a guess…that is all we can do today.

A TEXT POST

Recency and Primacy Effects (Physiology of Memory - How do neurons create memories)

Recency and Primacy Effects

The order in which information is learned determines how reliably it will be recalled. The first item in a list is initially distinguished from previous activities as important (primacy effect) and may be transferred to long-term memory by the time of recall. Items at the end of the list are still in short-term memory (recency effect) at the time of recall.

http://brainu.org/recency-and-primacy-effects

Research

Miller and Campbell recorded proceedings from a trial with a combination of sequences of arguments for and against the plaintiff, sometimes with delays of a week between parts and the judgment that they sought from experimental participants.

The results in the table below show that when there was no delay between the first and second message, but then a week’s delay before the judgment, a primacy effect occurred. When there was a delay between the first and second message, but no gap between the second message and the judgment, then a recency effect occurred.

First message

Delay after first message?

Second message

Delay after second message?

Judgment

For plaintiff

No

Against plaintiff

No

Balanced

Against plaintiff

No

For plaintiff

No

Balanced

For plaintiff

No

Against plaintiff

Yes

For

Against plaintiff

No

For plaintiff

Yes

Against

For plaintiff

Yes

Against plaintiff

No

Against

Against plaintiff

Yes

For plaintiff

No

For

For plaintiff

Yes

Against plaintiff

Yes

Balanced

Against plaintiff

Yes

For plaintiff

Yes

Balanced

http://changingminds.org/explanations/theories/recency_effect.htm

According to duration of memory retention, we can classify this faculty into three types:

  1. Short-term Memory: This type of memory allows one to recall a few items (3-5) in a short time, from several seconds to as long as 1 minute. An interesting fact about short-term memory is that information is better recalled if it’s organized in chunks. For example, it’s easier to put in short-term memory the sequence 415-353-525, than it’s to remember 415353525. Therefore, we could benefit enormously if we approach memorization by organizing the information into chunks.
  2. Long-term Memory: Unlike short-term memory, rehearsal is often required for long-term memory. By means of this type of memory, we can store much larger quantities of information for potentially unlimited duration. However, the motto “use it or lose it” applies here nicely. Things that impact us tend to enter long-term memory without excessive barriers. But other, mere facts must be reinforced through repetition. This type of memory stores facts like memories of childhood, for example.
  3. Sensory Memory: It’s the memory that allows one to retain impressions of sensory information after the original stimulus has faded. It’s a very short lived memory, and is outside of conscious control.

Physiology of Memory - How do neurons create memories?

It is done by elec­tro­chem­i­cal impulses stream­ing into the brain. Brain con­tains some 100 bil­lion nerve cells called neu­rons which branch out to form over one quadrillion con­nec­tions called synapses.

The eas­i­est way to con­cep­tu­al­ize this is that there are more synapses in the human brain than there are stars in the known uni­verse. Mem­ory and learn­ing occur when the neu­rons and synapses reor­ga­nize and strengthen them­selves through repeated usage. Like building a bridge brick by brick. First there was walking path over fallen tree that 1-2 people were using. With each time they walked over the fallen tree they mounted one extension to it. In time that path grew to the size of the 3m wide bridge allowing more people to walk on it. More people means more building bricks so bridge get stronger and wider. After time it grew to bridge over which thousands of cars are passing over on 4 lanes each way motorway. So from 2 people at one time to thousands both ways at the time. But for some reason I prefer different example from old-time movies where innocent prisoners are trying to escape from prison by digging underground tunnel with a spoon. Carrying the soil in their socks and throwing it away on walking area. Spon by spoon. Eventually after years they can manage to dig a tunnel capable of fitting 1 person at the time allowing then to cross outside the prison walls. Now if you could imagine this process in fast forward e.g. 1 000 000 times you could see only little sparkles as glows of energy flowing during the movements.

How do connections between neurons become strengthened, so that the connection is ‘remembered’? Scientists know that if they give an electrical impulse to a pair of neurons, the two will communicate more easily in the future. This process is known as long-term potentiation (LTP). The effect can last for weeks, or even months – long enough to make a memory. LTP is especially obvious in the hippocampus, one of the areas of the brain active in memory.

Physiologically, memory is related to activity of several brain areas, such as hippocampus, the striatum, and the amygdala, for example. Nevertheless, it’s believed that memory and its counterpart, learning, are linked to changes in neuronal synapses. Neurons are electrically excitable cells in the nervous system that process and transmit information. The brain is a highly complex, nonlinear and parallel information processing system. It has the capability of organizing neurons so as to perform certain computations (e.g., pattern recognition, perception, and motor control.) Neurons are the structural constituents of the brain, massively interconnected between them, forming an enormously efficient and resilient structure.


The brain is constantly restructuring the stored information. In this sense, one of the primary functions of sleep is improving consolidation of such information.

http://life.halcode.com/archives/2008/04/27/stronger-memory-bigger-world/

A TEXT POST

Why passionate optimists are the most valuable asset in any business?

Optimists start businesses. An optimistic sees opportunity where others see uncertainty and despair.  As Winston Churchill once said, “optimists see opportunities in every difficulty.” Optimists have the successful mindset.

Optimists are inspiring communicators. Inspiration means, “to elicit a fervent enthusiasm.” You cannot elicit enthusiasm for an idea unless you’re a strong communicator. Colin Powell served under Ronald Reagan and said that optimism was the secret behind Reagan’s charisma. In fact everyone who knew Reagan described him as an eternal optimist, someone who believed in a better future. I work directly with some of the world’s best communicators. Each and every one of them is more optimistic than the average person

Optimists rally people to a better future. Reagan had his share of skeptics, but his speeches brought out the best in people. They wanted to live in the world he painted with his words. Another optimist—Winston Churchill—also faced skeptics. In Churchill’s case, nearly the entire British population was skeptical about going to war with Nazi Germany. Churchill single-handedly turned around public opinion in World War II with a series of optimistic speeches, painting a picture of how Britain could turn back the Nazi tide washing over Europe. In a matter of weeks, the British attitude shifted from one of appeasement to one of certainty that they could fight and win. Members of Churchill’s wartime Cabinet said his words and attitude made people feel braver in his presence

Optimists see the big picture. We all need optimists in our lives to fight the recency effect. The recency effect is a psychological term that simply means the most recent experiences we go through are the ones we are likely to remember and we assume those experiences will continue into the future.

Recency effect: “if a driver sees an equal total number of red cars as blue cars during a long journey, but there happens to be a glut of red cars at the end of the journey, he or she is likely to conclude that there were more red cars than blue cars throughout the drive.” We need leaders who are immune to the recency effect and who see the big picture, reminding us of the long-term.

Optimists elicit super human effort. In Colin Powell’s new book, It Worked For Me, he says that great leaders know things will get better because they themselves will make them better! Powell says military training is the best preparation for approaching difficult situations with an optimistic outlook. The following was drilled into Powell: “Lieutenant, you may be starving, but you must never show hunger. You may be freezing or near heat exhaustion, but you must never show that you are cold or hot. You may be terrified, but you must never show fear. You are the leader and the troops will reflect your emotions.” People must believe that no matter how bad things look, you will make them better.

Your employees are looking to you for inspiration and they’re not getting it from the news headlines. Today we need business leaders who inspire their employees, clients, and customers, infusing them with the confidence that in the end, all will be well.

read more: http://www.forbes.com/sites/carminegallo/2012/08/08/5-reasons-why-optimists-make-better-leaders/?goback=.gde_83353_member_144534905

A TEXT POST

Mistakes of one person that can affect everyone in your company!

1. Listening. Or more precisely, giving the appearance of listening. I’ve seen it happen hundreds of times. A business leader starts out as a genuinely good listener—attentive, curious, interested. Then, as success comes, along with massive demands on their time, and thn the leader learns to fake it.

Sure, they still nod and say “uh huh” at the appropriate moments; they still wrinkle their brow and appear engrossed (they may even up the ante on shoulder holding and eye contact), but the reality is that they’re paying attention less and processing less of what they do hear.

And of course, the result is that the leader becomes more and more isolated, less informed, and increasingly dependent on out-of-date and therefore irrelevant data. In turn, this leads to poor decisions, based on old assumptions.

The answer? If you think this might be you, there’s a simple fix. At the end of every substantive interaction, repeat back to the other party a summary of discussion, then ask this simple question: “Is there anything I’ve missed or misunderstood?” So long as you’re not intimidating the people you work with (see point 4), they’ll keep you on track.

2. Multitasking. One of the strengths of most great leaders is their ability to get through a huge volume of work. Another is the ability to be “in the moment” and to focus relentlessly on the issue at hand.

As the business grows and the demands on a leader’s time and resources are stretched further and further, guess which “strength” wins out? Multitasking— mostly because of the allure of decreasing the mountain of work ahead (an illusion, in fact, as you have no doubt experienced), begins to encroach more and more on the leader’s ability to focus on a singular issue.

Those one-on-one meetings now seem like a good opportunity to also sign off on a bunch of “routine” memos. Darting outside to take a couple of phone calls during a meeting becomes routine. Speed scanning through documents that require “reading” can be done at almost any time.

Except they can’t.

Not only does the quality of your decision making suffer inordinately, worse, your credibility takes a beating as everyone in the organization realizes that you’re not really “present” anymore. Try this as a first step: Multitask only when you’re on your own—doing computer work or plowing through documents. Discipline yourself to engage fully when you’re with others, and you’ll see the quality of your decision making shoot up.

3. “Snap” decisions. Ahh, experience and judgment: the two skills that most got you where you are today. You’re renowned in the past for nailing it. You quickly assimilate data, appraise the situation, and call the play—and get it right, more often than not.

Except that because your business has grown, there’s way more data now than you can possibly assimilate as quickly as you once did. So your snap decisions aren’t as dependable as they once were, but because you’re the big kahuna, no one is telling you.

Take a wander down to the front line (or send someone else out to do it, like a secret shopper) and find out if that last decision you made (about shipping terms or inventory management or brand extension) really did work in practice, or if it’s just sitting there, a clunky, half-implemented, mostly resented piece of irrelevancy that everyone is trying his or her best to ignore.

You may well find that (to borrow a phrase from my friend Marshall Goldsmith) that while making snap decisions got you here, it won’t get you there.

4. Manipulation. You’re (rightly) proud of your communication skills. Your ability to paint a vision and to communicate it in a way that motivates others to help you realize it is at the core of who you are. It’s also one of the key skills that helped you get your organization to where it is today.

Early on, you realized that you’re so good at communicating and motivating others that you could short-circuit the process, avoiding the lengthy process of collaboration and getting buy inYou simply manipulated others to do what you wanted, no questions asked. You did it rarely, though—only when you really had to.

Now, as success has brought a hugely increased workload, there simply isn’t the time any more to truly motivate others, and you’ve slipped into using manipulation as a default. The people around you have noticed, of course, and are increasingly doing the same thing themselves. The culture of the organization is diluting, and cynicism is replacing authenticity. Worst of all, because it is happening slowly (but ineluctably), like the proverbial frog in boiling water, you haven’t noticed.

Here’s the acid test: When people are manipulated into doing something, they do it—but only just. They’ll extend the bare minimum of effort in doing so. When they’re motivated, they’ll implement with intelligence and imagination. How often recently has your team taken an idea of yours and not only implemented it but together honed it and improved upon it?

If the answer is “rarely,” chances are, you’ve slipped into default manipulation mode.

source: http://www.inc.com/les-mckeown/4-biggest-weaknesses-of-great-leaders.html?nav=pop

A TEXT POST

Competencies of a good leader

Most members of a team know when they’re doing their work well. They often have a particular area of expertise, and they have deadlines and deliverables.

For leaders, it’s a bit different. How do you show that you’re leading? Here are five competencies that good leaders demonstrate. They are related to one another, and each is framed with a question to help you think about opportunities to display leadership.

1. Visibility

We know that leaders need to be seen by followers—from formal presentations and announcements, to a crisis, to simple “managing by walking around.”  The less-obvious occasions, however, are easily overlooked. They can be lost opportunities, or powerful expressions of leadership.

As a leader, when do you feel out of your comfort zone? Maybe it’s when you have to deliver bad or unpopular news, or mediate a conflict between direct reports, or perform a necessary task that you just don’t like. One CEO client told me that he found it hard to celebrate the “small to medium wins” that his team wanted acknowledged. He considered these victories just part of doing business. His solution was to ask his executives to publicize accomplishments up to a certain level, allowing him to save his praise for the really big achievements.

Ask yourself, “How am I visible to others when I don’t want to be?” The answer is not to pretend to like being visible—far from it. Instead, ask yourself this question prior to an uncomfortable event, and use it to help you prepare. Consider some behavioral options, and put yourself in a different mental space. Then you’ll be able to be visible in a more productive, less stressful manner.

2. Preparation

Many leaders are great at preparing the logistics of leadership (the facts and figures in a plan, or the pitch for a presentation). Too many leaders, however, don’t prepare regularly for the deeper daily requirements of leadership. This is a shame, because most leaders face complex challenges, relentless claims on their time, and increasing pressures to deliver on goals over which they don’t have direct control. A bit of regular preparation goes a long way.

Just as athletic activities involve physical, mental, and emotional energies, leadership is a “whole-body practice” and requires preparation of the whole person. The next time you are running through your checklist prior to a leadership event, ask yourself, “How have I prepared my whole self for this?”

3. Comfort

This is closely related to preparation, because leadership discomfort is greatly enhanced by a lack of preparation. In order to be more comfortable as a leader and to appear that way to other people, you need to practice (which is simple preparation repeated).  By “comfortable,” I don’t mean perpetually happy or even relaxed—I mean grounded in your complete embodiment of leadership.

Ask yourself, “How do I display that I am comfortable with the responsibilities and demands of leadership?” Look for nagging doubts in the back of your mind; or instincts that need to be surfaced around what you feel should be happening instead of what is happening, or that feeling of dread in the pit of your stomach about an issue not faced. This is valuable data, and if you do not address your lack of grounding and comfort, others will certainly sense it for you.

4. Listening

One reason that modern leadership is hard is because an effective modern leader must listen to others. Though few people manage to do it, this may be one of the easiest competencies to demonstrate—provided you can resist the urge to talk.

Ask yourself, “What one thing can I tell myself as a reminder to listen more?” It’s vitally important that you think up an effective cue. If you can’t come up with one, that in itself could indicate a deeper internal misalignment.

5. Blend

This list started with visibility. When the opposite is required, a leader must blend in. Otherwise, he or she risks drawing attention away from the people and issues at hand. When you pull back, it makes it easier for other people to bring you hard problems, bad news, and perspectives that challenge the status quo.

As a leader, it’s not all about you. The clearest way to demonstrate this is to find the right moments to step out of the spotlight so that other people get the attention they need. Ask yourself, “When necessary, how do I lower the volume of my leadership presence?”

Though leadership can be hard to demonstrate at times, regularly questioning how you embody your role will serve your leadership well.

source: http://www.inc.com/brian-evje/is-your-leadership-showing.html?nav=pop

A TEXT POST

Charismatic People

Charismatic People:

- listen way more than they talk

- don’t practice selective hearing

- put their stuff away

- give before they receive—and often they never receive

- don’t act self-important…

- …Because they realize other people are more important.

- shine the spotlight on others

- choose their words

- don’t discuss the failings of others…

- …But they readily admit their failings

source: http://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/10-habits-of-remarkably-charismatic-people.html?nav=pop

A TEXT POST

Reasons a 23-Year-Old Shouldn’t Run Your Social Media

They’re not mature enough

They may be focused on their own social-media activity

They may not have the same etiquette—or experience

You can’t control their friends

No class can replace on-the-job training

They may not understand your business

Communication skills are critical

Humor is tricky business

Social-media savvy is not the same as technical savvy

Social-media management can become crisis management

Social-media management can become crisis management

read more:  http://www.inc.com/hollis-thomases/social-media-dont-put-intern-in-charge.html?nav=pop

A TEXT POST

Can online advertising (AdWords) bring customers to your (physical) store?

"After gathering baseline data, RapidBlue asked retailers to conduct a Google AdWords campaign. Then, while controlling for time-of-day and day-of-week variability, it re-checked shopper metrics, using a patented approach the company calls Gross Shopping Hours. Finally, after pausing the campaigns, it continued gathering baseline data, in order to control for other variables that could be causing shopper behavior changes.

“What we’ve found, and what seems to be quite encouraging, is that online campaigns for retailers seem to have a brick-and-mortar impact,”says Parkkinen.

More shoppers visited, and shopper spent more time in-store.

Exciting stuff, if you’ve invested in a physical location.”

So next time you will be running AdWords campaign do not “limit” yourself to checking only online results (pageviews, conversions etc) but also look for patterns of how online ads might influence buying behavior in stores as well.

Did we reached time where internet ads have similiar sales & PR effects to the brands as TV or print ads?  If so isn’t that just most powerfull tool in marketing at the minute?

source: http://venturebeat.com/2012/07/23/online-ads-equal-offline-sales-says-shopper-analytics-firm-rapidblue/

A TEXT POST

Customer Loyalty

Here are five ways you can take customer loyalty up a notch:

1. Improve your ‘Thank You.’
Most of us have a Web page or email that thanks our customers for converting, whether that means joining the community, purchasing a product or signing up for a newsletter. But chances are good that the “thank you” could use some work. Because the thank you page or email is seen by every single one of your customers, you should ask: Does it put your best foot forward?

Rather than merely using that page to confirm an action, why not add some useful resources, follow-up steps or company contact information? Other ideas for improvement include lacing in a promotion to instigate immediate action or simply making the message more visually enticing.

2. Optimize your feedback channels.
Feedback comes in many forms, but chances are you’re getting customer responses you aren’t even using. While many companies tap into what their customer service department is hearing, they are less likely to proactively survey their website visitors or to analyze their cancelation and return forms. That’s a shame because these are all opportunities to get more information on what customers need.

When you take the time to improve your feedback channels, you are telling your audience, “We care about what you think.” This reminder can help build loyalty and help you answer concerns in a timelier manner, reducing customer loss and building trust.

3. Go beyond cancellations as a performance indicator.
While you need to know how many of your customers are cancelling, it is a reactive performance indicator. In addition to monitoring your customers loss, you can gauge loyalty by watching your company’s “net promoter score,” frequency of customer interactions with your business and the length of time between customer visits. By tracking how engaged customers are and how likely they are to recommend your company, you can get a more complete measure of their loyalty.

4. Assign someone to manage it.
Tracking and improving customer loyalty can be a challenge if no one specific is managing it. Good candidates for this responsibility often come from customer service, marketing, operations or product teams. The key qualifications are the ability to work well with others and a belief in the value of both qualitative and quantitative data analysis.

Whoever you choose should understand that customer loyalty may touch a number of departments at your company, but it deserves its own champion for maximum success.

5. Evangelize the gains and losses.
While customer loyalty should have a dedicated advocate, it is a company-wide effort. Unfortunately, customer loyalty scores rarely get touted as much as revenue and profits. Why is that? Many companies see customer loyalty as something beyond their control, that it is the natural result of the websites they build and products and services they sell. But companies have a number of opportunities to build trust and loyalty by making their interactions with customers the best they can be.

To show the importance of these interactions to customer retention, you can share with the rest of the company the results of your loyalty measurements, whether good or bad. This makes it a company-wide priority, and only then are you really taking customer loyalty to the next level.

source  http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/224117

A TEXT POST

The Link Between Quietness And Productivity

Sometimes we forget that the most productive people in an organization aren’t the ones who make the most noise. In fact, it’s often the quiet ones who out-produce everyone else.

Here are some reasons I think this is so.

Being quiet strengthens focus. It’s hard to focus on the task at hand when you yourself are making so much noise. The other team, who participated in the clamming wars, never took their eye off the prize. Our team, on the other hand, did a happy dance in the sand every time we hit pay dirt. In retrospect, this was probably valuable time wasted.

Being quiet calms others. Quiet people have the ability to calm those around them. For example, when everyone is stressing out because it looks like a team isn’t going to meet their deadlines, it’s usually the quiet people who are able to calm people down and carry them over the finish line.

Being quiet conveys confidence. You don’t have to prove anything to anyone when you are confident. You know you do a good job and you believe that eventually others will take notice.

Being quiet means you think before you speak. Quiet people are usually thoughtful thinkers. They think things through before making a statement. Something you probably wish many of your workers would do before taking up your valuable time.

Being quiet gives you the space to dig deep. Quiet people tend to delve into issues and ideas before moving on to new ones. Compare this to the surface people in your organization, who often move onto other matters without giving thought to the gold that may be sitting right below the surface.

The next time you evaluate team performance, be sure to give credit where credit is due. Remember that at the end of the day, it’s not about the noise one makes, but what one actually gets done.

source: http://www.fastcompany.com/3000226/link-between-quietness-and-productivity