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Friday Favourites – 22nd November, 2013

imageOn a Friday I try to post my favourites from the week – links to cool content and tools that I’ve found or had recommended to me.

Cool stuff I’ve found this week, ending 22nd November, 2013:-

  • Nextly – Browse handpicked collections of webpages and curate your own pages. Build collections of your favourite web-pages and easily browse the latest stories. I’ve found this a fantastic way to keep up to date with blogs and news sites. Thanks Yvonne Miaoulis of MSP Builder for the link!
  • Lync Custom Status 2014 – An app that eases the pain of creating custom status options for the Microsoft Lync client. Rather than just telling your contacts you are away or busy, you can now give them more insight into what you are away doing. Thanks to Mike Hudson for sharing his latest App with us!
  • DeskBeers – A selection of high quality craft Beers from London breweries delivered to your office every Friday. What more could you want! Make your team happy and subscribe now! Thanks to Nicholas Bate for sharing.

Do you have any cool content or tools to share with me? Why not e-mail me, Tweet me, or share with me on Google+ and I if I feature them in my blog you can be sure to give you credit!

Have a great weekend! Smile

 

photo credit: ulianne via photopin cc

Friday Favourites – June 8th, 2012

Image used courtesy of Sarah Reid under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) LicenseEvery Friday I try to post links to cool content and tools that I’ve found or had recommended to me.

Cool stuff I’ve found this week:-

  • Podio – A social collaboration platform that enables you to quickly and easily work with colleagues, clients and more. Check out the huge library of platform Apps to extend functionality.
  • Hachi – a neat way of finding how you’re connected to people via various Social Media channels. Utilises LinkedIn, Facebook and more to come. Currently in invite only beta – but ask the Hachi team nicely and they might let you join in… Smile (Thanks to Julian Wilkinson at Ginger Inc for the heads-up!)
  • Albatros Bookmarks – if you read a lot of books (as I do) then you’ll love this innovative bookmark. Simple, but effective!

Any cool content or tools to share with me? Contact me and I if I feature them in my blog, I’ll be sure to give you credit!

Have a great weekend! Smile

Friday Favourites – May 18th

Image used courtesy of Sarah Reid under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) LicenseEvery Friday I try to post links to cool content and tools that I’ve found or had recommended to me.

Cool stuff I’ve found this week:-

  • Boomerang for GMail – a Firefox/Chrome plug-in that allows you to schedule when you send and receive e-mails. Thanks Dawud Miracle for the heads-up!
  • Hold on Tight Shelf – if you’ve an avid reader (as I am) then you’ll love this innovative book-shelf design!
  • Cloud Magic – an awesome search tool that works with Google Mail, Twitter, Microsoft Exchange and other to provide you with instant search across all your contacts and communications from within your web-browser. Thanks to Owen Kane at KRS Group for pointing me towards Cloud Magic!

Any cool content or tools to share with me? Contact me and I if I feature them in my blog, I’ll be sure to give you credit!

Have a great weekend! Smile

Twelve Thoughts for Friday

Thinking... T-Shirt

Twelve Thoughts for Friday (or whichever day you’re reading this on).

  1. Reading regularly is important.
  2. Don’t expect different results if you keep doing what you’ve always done.
  3. If you want to be change the way you think and act, do spend time with people and communities who think and act the way you’d like to be.
  4. Don’t look externally for validation, but do regularly measure your progress against your own markers.
  5. Don’t compare yourself to others, especially what you see of others on Social Media. Facebook is the edited highlight reel of our lives.
  6. Do finish work early today. I’ve yet to meet someone in the later years of their life who ever told me they regretted not working longer hours.
  7. Do that one thing you wish you had more time to do for just one week. Don’t have time? Don’t watch Television this week.
  8. Do what you love to do every day. Don’t give up until you’re doing this.
  9. Do realise that you can do anything, but also realise that you can’t do everything.
  10. Don’t kid yourself that Facebook is important to your success.
  11. Do consider that to achieve more, you often have to do less. The key is to understanding what you need to do less of.
  12. Finally – don’t keep waiting for the right moment to tell those who you love, respect and who influence you how much you appreciate them. That right moment is now. Right now. A telephone call is great, a hand-written note is good, but even an e-mail is better than not saying anything at all.

Why Successful Business Leaders Read Regularly

Pile of BooksI’ve always been an avid book reader. I have a large library of Biographies, Self-Development books and Business tomes and am always on the look out for book recommendations from others.

Truth be told, like most people I’ve spoken to, (especially fellow business owners) I buy more books than I actually read – especially when it comes to business books.

Just like subscribing to a gym membership but never actually going to the gym, buying a business book somehow makes you feel like you’re declaring your good intentions to learn about a subject, even though you may take ages to read said book.

That pile of books you haven’t read

The problem with having a ton of books sitting on a bookshelf at home is that my reading mood seems to change frequently and the book I actually want to read never seems to be the one I’m carrying with me. I can be sat in the barbers waiting for my hair (what little there still is of it) to be cut and I’ll be in the mood to read some Tech History. I can be travelling by aeroplane and suddenly be in the mood for some Self-Development reading. Or I could be in a park on a sunny day and fancy reading some fiction. Chances are the book I actually have with me is something I feel I *should* be reading (such as a business tome) but am probably not in the mood to read.

Amazon KindleA few months ago that all started to change for me – and it’s all thanks to the Amazon Kindle.

Benefits of an e-Reader

Having an e-Reader like the Kindle means I can pretty much carry all the books I now buy with me wherever I go. I now find myself reading a lot more, because the book I’m in the mood to read is nearly always with me at the time I want to read it.

But why is reading important for business success?

Tom Peters believes in out-reading the competition. He suggest that ‘A’ player executives out-read ‘B’ and ‘C’ players – reading on average 24 books per year.

I think regularly reading helps to improve the way you think as a business owner. Quite often I’ll be reading a chapter of a book and within the first few paragraphs, my mind will pop up with a thought or suggestion – often a solution to a problem or challenge I’ve been wrestling with.

For me, this happens most regularly when reading business books and biographies – as I’m often reading the writing of someone I admire or respect. Books are a great way of learning from successful people or thought leaders I appreciate.

Reading inspires me with ideas. It fills me with enthusiasm and energy. Quite often, taking 15 minutes to read the chapter of a book will give me the energy to crack on and get more done in that day than I otherwise would – especially if I’ve found myself in a mid-afternoon slump, moving papers around aimlessly or browsing Facebook. Reading helps re-focus my mind on what I want and need to be doing to be successful.

Don’t have time to read?

The most common reason I hear for that pile of books gathering dust is that business owners “don’t have time”. I understand that – there is a hundred things to do every day, and the work available will *always* expand to fill the time you have available. Having an e-Book reader like the Kindle will help, but you still need to make the time to read.

Need help finding the time to enjoy the benefits of reading? Try this cheap (or free!) experiment.

  1. If you own an Amazon Kindle. Great, you’re all set.
  2. If you don’t own a Kindle – they’re currently selling for £89. Treat yourself for Christmas!
  3. Alternatively, go and download the Amazon Kindle Reader Application for your PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad or Android Device. It’s free.
  4. Next, go and grab hold of Seth Godin’s book “Poke The Box” or Steven Pressfield’s “Do The Work” – or preferably, both – in Amazon Kindle e-book format. Both books are just a few quid in cost.

Either of these books will be downloaded within seconds, and you’ll have read them, electronic cover to cover, within an hour (and probably less!).

The Domino Project

The Domino Project LogoBoth of these books are part of Seth Godin’s The Domino Project, a new way of looking at publishing. In reality, both books are actually less your traditional book and more like manifestos, but I’m pretty sure both books will have the same effect on you that they did on me – they’ll inspire, energise and motivate you to get on and be successful at whatever you do.

If that works for you (or if you’re too tight to pay for the two books I mentioned) then go grab the next book in The Domino Project, The Flinch by Julien Smith. You can find it (for a short time only) free at Amazon. I’ve not even read this book yet but am guessing it’ll be just as thought provoking, motivating and inspiring as Poke The Box and Do The Work.

There’s no excuse for testing this theory. The books are cheap (or free), the method convenient, and the investment of time required for the experiment low.

Give it a try and let me know what the results are. Smile

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