k_Street Consulting, LLC Blog
You’re already a business owner, but let’s say that you want to pick up some new skills. You want to be known as an expert in a new field, and you’re pretty dedicated to doing so. Perhaps you’re familiar with the 10,000 hours rule, which attempts to explain how someone becomes a master of a particular craft. Well, we hate to burst your bubble, but this rule might not be as simple as it sounds.
With the use of portable personal music players and streaming services like Spotify, Google Play Music, and Pandora, unobtrusively listening to music in the workplace has become much easier--but has it also made it easier for employees to be more distracted from their tasks? Additionally, assuming that music does create a boost in productivity, why does it do so?
Keeping your workers as productive as possible is a challenge for every employer. According to a recent study by the Harvard Business Review, there is one easy way that you can increase productivity: By keeping a productive worker in close proximity to other workers.
Every business relies on some sort of productivity. Whether it’s sales, manufacturing, distributing, managing, or support. If you are looking for a way to get more from your staff, giving them direct access to all the data they need to do their job properly can go a long way toward putting them in a position to succeed.
When you decided to start your business, you had to be overwhelmed with everything that you had to do just to get it off the ground. If you are like many entrepreneurs, getting a product to market was the aim then, but as business continues and your organization grows, it’s likely that you’ve looked to technology as a benefit. So, when does the amount of technology you have become a hindrance to your bottom line? We will take a look at what happens when an organization takes their love of technology too far.
Since eCommerce has experienced a surge in popularity, your employees might be tempted to get their holiday shopping out of the way as soon as possible by doing a little bit of browsing during your hours of operation. Depending on your business’s policies regarding personal Internet usage during office hours, you may need to take action against those who abuse the privilege.
Instant messaging has changed the way that individuals communicate with one another, both in their personal lives and in the workplace. Just as email threw a wrench in traditional mail's plans, instant messaging threatens to jump start a new method of instantaneous communication, one which can be seen as a great benefit, but also an immense annoyance.
As the smartphone takes over many of our daily tasks, it can be annoying if we have to use a separate device to accomplish what we need to, like making calls on a different phone. Did you know that it’s easy to add a second phone number to your smartphone?
We’ve all become so adapted to the conveniences of the Internet that it’s difficult to remember what society was like before it. This becomes especially obvious when watching old movies. How odd is it to see characters do pre-Internet activities like go to the library to research information and use a phone book? These are just some of the ways that the Internet has dramatically changed society, for better and perhaps for worse.
Modern businesses are reliant on certain parts of their infrastructure to keep operations functioning. For example, if your building’s electricity were to go down, what would you do? What about if you lost Internet access? Would your business be able to keep your employees busy, or would the downtime experienced be enough to cause panic?
GIFs. What are they? If you’ve spent any time perusing the Internet, you’ve definitely come across a GIF or two. Essentially, a GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) is an animated picture that loops a few seconds of a video clip (without playing any audio). In addition to GIFs being fun, they can serve as a great way to enhance digital communications. How can you take advantage of GIFs?
When it comes to purchasing the best technology to protect your business, you should consider an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) device. The reasoning is simple; they help your organization avoid data loss, and aid in business continuity. Here’s what you need to know about UPS devices.
Computers are designed to save people significant time when it comes to getting work done, and with a few simple tweaks and adjustments, you can trim even more seconds off a project, which really adds up in terms of gaining productivity. Your PC’s Snap To mouse feature is a classic example of this.
Cloud computing is sweeping the technology industry, and it’s easy to see why. It provides an immense versatility and productivity that we could only have dreamed of ten years ago. However, some organizations are still hesitant about implementing this game-changing concept into their technology infrastructure. One of the most common reasons is because businesses don’t actually know what the cloud can do for them.
If you’ve ever taken your gadgets on the go for work purposes, you might have found that it’s somewhat difficult to get anything done with the limited computing potential of a smartphone or tablet. However, with the right technology, you can take full advantage of your mobile devices, especially if you’re using Windows 10 with its full Microsoft Office suite (Want to know if Windows 10 is right for your business? Reach out to us before you upgrade).
In order to perform their jobs to the best of their ability, your staff need to access mission-critical data in a moment’s notice. One of the best ways you can help your employees work their best is to ensure that any information they need to do their jobs is immediately available. Do you make this a priority, or deal with this issue as the problems arise?
There are countless ways to boost your productivity in the office… at least, that’s what the Internet says. How do you separate the productivity champs from the chumps? It’s simple, really; just look for the tried and true methods that have been backed by thorough research. One such study, performed by Julia Gifford of Draugiem Group, claims that workers can be more productive by not trying to do as much office work as possible.
In our last blog article, we looked at Microsoft’s mobile computing strategy for businesses. In part II, we want to follow up by looking at some specific mobile technology from Microsoft, including a preview of its newest mobile computing venture, Windows 10.
The road down entrepreneurialism is a long and twisted path, full of pitfalls that can lead you astray. However, there’s one companion who will never forsake you, and that’s your morning cup of coffee. While you might feel like you can’t get anything done without your morning caffeine fix, it can be holding you back from achieving your maximum productivity.
The computer mouse has been a staple in the modern office for many years. Despite its proven usefulness, it’s now threatened by the growing adaptation of touchscreen devices in the workplace. Are you considering trading in your trusty mouse? Before you do, consider these three mouse scroll wheel tricks that make your boring old mouse more useful.
One of the more recent office trends seems to be the open office. While this is more space-efficient and supposedly helps foster productivity and communication, there’s also the possibility that it can do exactly the opposite. According to a 2002 study from Environment and Behavior, the open office can be a hindrance to unlocking the full potential of all employees.
You pay your employees to come to the office and perform their daily duties, but how much of that time is actually being spent working? Every wasted minute cuts into your daily profits, which can waste countless minutes. If you want to get the most out of your team, there are several technology strategies that the modern business can take advantage of to maximize productivity.
If you’re one of those people who are always checking their inbox, you might be dealing with a lot of unnecessary stress in the workplace. A study has linked constantly checking your email inbox to higher stress levels. While this might not come off as much of a surprise, researchers at the University of British Columbia have managed to put a number to the maximum amount of times you should be checking your email to minimize stress.
As a business owner, you know there simply are not enough hours in the day to get everything done. However, what some professionals fail to notice is that their morning and afternoon commutes are an entirely untapped market for productivity-boosting activities. By using this time wisely, you can get more done in the office, reducing stress and freeing up your schedule.
The owner of a successful business growing at an immense rate knows how difficult it is to allocate time to all necessary responsibilities. In the words of Bilbo Baggins from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, you might, “Feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.” One of the things which might get pushed to the side is your company’s IT network. We feel that you shouldn’t have to take your attention away from your business to worry about IT.
Business owners talk a lot about collaboration, but few organizations have the means to take full advantage of it. One way these businesses miss the mark is by using outdated technology. Ironically, most technology in the workplace is designed to improve collaboration yet businesses continue to struggle with it. By improving your understanding of your technology, you’ll pave the way for greater workplace synergy.
Even if you’re a top-tier businessman, you’re still only human; and the human body can be defeated by something as insignificant as germs. Eventually, your body’s immune system can give in and let a biological virus or two into your system. When you’re feeling under the weather, it’s probably best to stay home, but you can still keep yourself preoccupied and productive if need be.
We talk a lot about how downtime experienced from a technology issue like a server outage can destroy your company’s productivity. Yet, we’ve not distinguished between the different types of downtime, with the worst kind being pure and unadulterated downtime. What is pure downtime and how can you dilute it?
When a soldier in the military is promoted to officer, one would assume that it's due to their ferocity and quick decision-making abilities that have been proven on the battlefield. Character traits like these are important, but to be an officer in today's military, one will need to possess one skill above all others: Microsoft PowerPoint proficiency.
Technology is a wondrous thing, capable of granting our every wish with a simple query… well, sort of. It depends on how you use it. Today’s technology is capable of expanding our productivity through the roof, or sending it to live in squalor deep in the gutters of the Internet. What can your company do to take advantage of this wondrous innovation, and avoid the pitfalls of wasteful distractions?
Technology grows more powerful and complex every day, and there have been increasing efforts to automate certain repetitive tasks. In the near future, we may be able to look at fully automated assembly lines. While most companies are concentrating on what this means for their budgets, automation could very well be a threat to jobs around the world.
Some businesses like to promote casual workplaces, while others are strictly professional. But regardless of what sort of office you have set up for your business, the fact remains that it is a place of work and productivity. There is always room for improvement, even if it only means a few extra moments of productivity every day, but it adds up quickly.
Ever since mobile devices gained the ability to connect to the Internet, the integration of smart technology has followed us out of the office and into our homes, and even on your family vacation. If you are afraid that unplugging yourself from the workplace will spell trouble for your business, think again - you might just be worrying too much.
There's a reason why business technology is categorized differently than consumer technology. For example, nobody in their right mind has a copy machine the size of a Smart Car sitting in the home office. More is demanded from business technology, which is why you need a professional partner to assist you with your professional technology!
Oh man, it's so hot outside! When the summer heat is at its worst, car door handles become like glowing irons removed from the fire and it feels like nature is one big oven. Summer heat is especially hard on your office building's air conditioning unit. Consequently, the heat can put your computer equipment in danger. Portable cooling to the rescue!
The wonderful new technology of cloud computing is making ripples all across the world, making everything easier for businesses. Before cloud computing, companies had to utilize infrastructures in manners far less organized and efficient. By comparing doing business before and after cloud computing, you'll realize just how incredible it can be to move your company to the cloud!
With the coming of spring, many people are taking the opportunity to get rid of all of the stuff they don't need anymore. As time goes on, you accumulate all sorts of junk that you probably don't even know you have. Sometimes it's a good idea to go through it all and see if you really need it - especially for your business's in-house IT department.
Chris Dancy is known far and wide for being "the most connected human on earth", but how exactly does he do it? It's much easier than some people think. He takes advantage of the numerous technologies and systems available, and they all work together to track his every move. Why would he want to do this? It's not for bragging rights, as some might say - rather, it is all about a "quantified life existence." To find out what this means, we got a chance to interview Chris about his tech journey.
Multitasking is something that everyone prides themselves on, but cognitive psychologist Art Markman seems to think otherwise. He says, "you are your own worst judge of how good a multitasker you are," due to the same areas of the brain that monitor performance are the same areas that work with multitasking, making it nigh impossible to determine how well you are actually multitasking. Of course, multitasking is something that every good employee should learn how to do, as it can improve productivity significantly.
Sometimes it's okay to waste time surfing the Internet, like when you're unwinding at home after a long day at the office. However, wasting time with mindless Internet browsing can become a problem when it cuts into your work day and makes you less productive.
It's a rare occasion that a company grows to have as much prowess over multiple industries as Google has. Since their launch in 1998, their mission has been "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." By launching products and services centered on this purpose, Google has grown to set the world's standard of information and how it's managed. What can your business learn from them?
How could it have ever come to this? The everyday practical use of the beloved computer mouse has been put in jeopardy due to the relatively recent introduction of touchscreen technology. Tablets, smartphones, and touchscreen computers are driving our handheld friends off of the shelves and into history books. Will the computer mouse go extinct in the near future?
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