With India eliminated from the Asia Cup and just one Twenty20 International against South Africa in Johannesburg to come, the focus now shifts to the upcoming Indian Premier League.Delhi Daredevils skipper Virender Sehwag is very pleased with the changes in the team composition made by the 2011 wooden spooners, and said it would be an honour and a pleasure to play alongside three current and former international captains.”It’s an honour to be playing with the players who have captained their countries. They can always give me advice if I am going wrong, or suggest a bowling change or field setting that works. So it feels great to be playing with Mahela, Kevin Pietersen and Ross Taylor,” Sehwag told reporters at an event to launch his team’s revamped website here on Wednesday.”I have got (players who were) my first preference, and am happy to have a strong team. Some players will not be available for the first few games, so we will have to really play well.”Asked about the goals for the upcoming season, the flamboyant batsman said: “No one can set a target. We will try to play good cricket, give our 100 per cent. The most important thing, to start with, is to make the play-offs. From there on we will think. The first two or three games are very important, and then we take it forward.”Sehwag, who was rested for the Asia Cup, said while he was doing fine now, he missed being part of the dressing room when his idol, Sachin Tendulkar, got to his 100th international century.advertisement”The rest period is over and I am set to train, and play in the IPL. (But) I missed being in the dressing room when Tendulkar scored that 100th century,” he said.The 33-year-old defended the continued failures of the national team, saying it was a phase everyone went through. “It happens with every team across the world. There is also the home advantage which every team is taking now. The times will change for us. (In the Asia Cup) we beat Pakistan and Sri Lanka but lost to Bangladesh. They have the ability to beat any team,” he said.With the senior players under pressure to give way to youth, Sehwag was asked about his opinion on when a player should retire, and said: “It’s not like a job, government job where you have to retire at 60. A cricketer can retire at 30 or 60, it’s up to the player. Sanath Jayasuriya played till he was 42. I will continue to play as long as I am enjoying the game, contributing to the team, winning games for my country. Nobody can force a player to retire.”After Rahul Dravid’s retirement, Sehwag had paid tribute to the legend’s patience. Asked if it was a sign of things to come in his own batting, Sehwag replied in the negative.”I will not change my style of batting. (Regarding Dravid) he is too good, he is a good listener too. Patience is important even in T20s; you have to play out 120 balls,” he said.Sehwag also heaped praise on Virat Kohli for his outstanding performances on the Australia tour and in the Asia Cup.”He is a brilliant player. He has hit 11 ODI centuries and has not even played 100 matches. He has proved himself and no amount of praise is enough for him,” Sehwag said.The Daredevils also launched their website in Hindi, and Sehwag, who hails from the semi-rural area of Najafgarh on the outskirts of Delhi, said: “This season, my priority will be to interact with the team’s fans. I am happy and excited to see the Hindi website. I am from a rural area, I lived in Najafgarh for 26-27 years before moving to central Delhi. This will help us reach out to more people who can’t read or understand English in the village, and expand our fan base.”shreyas. email@example.com
‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — Sports’ highest court rejected appeals by all 45 Russian athletes plus two coaches who were banned from the Pyeongchang Olympics over doping concerns in a decision announced on Friday, less than nine hours before the opening ceremony.The International Olympic Committee (IOC) had refused to invite the group of Russians, saying it had evidence of alleged doping in Russian sports.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingAfter two days of hearings, the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled that the IOC has the right to set its own standards for who is eligible.CAS Secretary General Matthieu Reeb, reading from a statement and declining to take questions, said the IOC process “could not be described as a sanction but rather as an eligibility decision.” ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims LATEST STORIES The IOC’s vetting process was designed to exclude Russian athletes from the games if IOC officials were not sure they were clean, even if they had not been banned for doping.The IOC subsequently invited 168 Russians to participate as “Olympic Athletes from Russia,” competing in neutral uniforms under the Olympic flag in a decision designed to balance the rights of individual athletes with the need for a strong deterrent to doping.The Russian delegation in Pyeongchang declined requests for comment, with spokesman Konstantin Vybornov saying “that’s it — the story is over.”The ruling is a heavy blow to Russian medal chances.Among those excluded are six-time gold medalist Viktor Ahn, the short track speed-skater whose return to his native South Korea for the Olympics had been hotly anticipated by local fans.Also out are cross-country skiing gold medalist Alexander Legkov and skeleton gold medalist Alexander Tretiakov, as well as potential medal contenders in biathlon, luge, and bobsled.Three former NHL players — Sergei Plotnikov, Anton Belov and Valeri Nichushkin — also lost appeals, though it was widely considered unlikely they would have played even if they had been successful, since the Russian roster is already full.United States Anti-Doping Agency chief executive Travis Tygart said the decision was a “a small glimmer of hope in an otherwise dark and sordid affair.”“You hope justice has been served but how some of these athletes can keep dirty medals from Sochi but be excluded now is hard to reconcile,” Tygart said. “And why the IOC rushed the process on the Sochi medal decisions is unexplainable and a tragedy for clean athletes.”The ruling comes a day after the first Olympic competitions began and ends more than a week of uncertainty for two groups of athletes who lodged last-ditch cases to the CAS. As well as the 45 athletes, the ruling covers a luge coach and a skeleton coach.The IOC has refused to comment on individual Russian athletes but says it decided who to exclude using a newly obtained Moscow laboratory database with evidence of past doping offenses.It refused to invite some Russians even after their disqualifications from the 2014 Olympics were lifted by CAS last week.Stephen Hess, an international sports lawyer based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, said the decision was a victory for the IOC.“There is no absolute right to get an invitation from the IOC to come to the Olympics,” Hess said in a telephone interview. “That was within the IOC’s discretion, and they didn’t exercise it arbitrarily. If Russia had an Olympic team, CAS might have said: ‘IOC, the Russians can put them on their own team. You can’t keep them out.’ But Russian doesn’t have an Olympic team.”The IOC pointed to a CAS statement that declared the Russians were not necessarily innocent of doping, just that the evidence was insufficient to ban them. Also, the IOC said, “there were additional elements and/or evidence, which could not be considered” in last week’s CAS case “that raised suspicion about the integrity of these athletes.”US athletes praised the decision and the end to uncertainty around the participation of some Russian athletes.“That is great news,” said US women’s skeleton athlete Katie Uhlaender, who placed fourth in the Sochi Olympics — one spot behind bronze medalist Elena Nikitina, who was one of the 45 appealing her ban. U.S. bobsledder Nick Cunningham said he’s tried to not focus on the will-they-or-won’t-they drama surrounding the Russians.“It’s not going to change what happens to me in the next two weeks,” Cunningham said. “If dirty athletes are taken out, then clean athletes will prevail. That’s what I hope.” /kga Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim In this February 15, 2014 photo, men’s 1,000-meter short track speed-skating gold medalist Viktor Ahn, of Russia, gestures while holding his medal during the medals ceremony at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Six-time Olympic gold medalist Ahn and three former NHL players are among 45 Russian athletes and two coaches who were banned from the Pyeongchang Olympics over doping concerns in a decision announced on Friday, February 9, 2018. (AP FILE PHOTO) “The CAS panel found that the applicants did not demonstrate that the manner in which the two special commissions — the Invitation Review Panel and the Olympic Athlete from Russia Implementation Group — independently evaluated the applicants was carried out in a discriminatory, arbitrary or unfair manner. The Panel also concluded that there was no evidence the (commissions) improperly exercised their discretion.”The IOC and the World Anti-Doping Agency welcomed the decision. The IOC issued a statement saying the decision “supports the fight against doping and brings clarity for all athletes.”WADA president Craig Reedie described it as “absolutely correct.”“I am delighted at the decision and the way they expressed it,” Reedie told the Associated Press in a telephone interview. “They have quite clearly understood that there was systemic manipulation of the anti-doping process.“It means the games can proceed. Athletes can get their heads down and go. This particular issue is now behind us.”ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid Do we want to be champions or GROs? – Sotto Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next BeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives Golden State forward Draymond Green fined $50,000 View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ
Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan has expressed grief over the death of 20-year-old Bengal cricketer Ankit Keshri, who died from an on-field injury today.Shah Rukh Khan condoled the death of Ankit Keshri (R), the u-19 Bengal cricketer who passed away Monday”Too young to go…extremely unfortunate & sad. Condolences & prayers for Ankit Keshri & his family. May Allah bless his soul. R.I.P,” Khan, who is West Bengal’s brand ambassador and co-owner of the Indian Premier League team Kolkata Knight Riders, wrote on Twitter on Monday.Too young to go?extremely unfortunate & sad. Condolences & prayers for Ankit Keshri & his family. May Allah bless his soul. R.I.P. Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) April 20, 2015The former Bengal Under-19 cricket captain, Ankit sustained a head injury in an on-field collision during a local game in Kolkata on Friday during a senior knockout match against Bhowanipore. The opening batsman, who was also a member of the Under-23 Bengal squad this year, passed away following a massive heart attack on Monday.In November 2014, the world had mourned another on-field injury death. Australian cricketer Phil Hughes had passed away following a ‘catastrophic injury’ to his head, after being hit by the ball during a domestic match in Sydney. A bouncer from New South Wales bowler Sean Abott had struck Hughes in the neck during a Sheffield Shield Match between South Australia and New South Wales, on November 25 last year. Two days later, on November 27, Hughes succumbed to his injuries.advertisement(With IANS inputs)
View comments UK thanks PH for rescuing Brit, Filipino wife abducted in Sulu Kim Chiu rushed to ER after getting bitten by dog in BGC Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘City-killer’: Asteroid the size of the Great Pyramid may hit Earth in 2022, says NASA LATEST STORIES What a relief! Paris show lifts taboo on historic outdoor loos Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:07Nothing wrong with raids on offices of progressive groups—Palace00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Singapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics MOST READ Raonic, 28, will be replaced by Kamil Majchrzak of Poland, who lost in the final round of qualifying.World number 22 Raonic also missed the French Open each of the past two years because of injury. He reached the last 16 on four occasions at Flushing Meadows.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsSPORTSPH women’s football team not spared from SEA Games hotel woesSPORTSThailand claims not enough Thai food, drinks for players at hotel Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Women’s football teams served just egg, kikiam and rice for breakfast MONTREAL, QC – AUGUST 07: Milos Raonic of Canada receives medical attention on the court in his match against Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada during day 6 of the Rogers Cup at IGA Stadium on August 7, 2019 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images/AFPCanada’s Milos Raonic has pulled out of the US Open with a glute injury, tournament organisers announced Sunday.The former Wimbledon finalist endured an injury-hit season and has not played since retiring during the second round of the Montreal Masters this month.ADVERTISEMENT ‘Ghost guns’ are untraceable, easy to make, more prevalent Rui Hachimura, Japan’s mixed-race basketball star who once ‘hid from the world’ Renovation of old sports venues not just for SEA Games use
Restaurant Manager The Cheesecake Factory Novi, MI 23 hours ago 23h Available Jobs at The Cheesecake Factory Restaurant Manager – Southcenter The Cheesecake Factory Seattle, WA The Cheesecake Factory built its brand on celebratory fun: a place for guests to enjoy an anniversary or birthday over one of 300 menu items, starting with that famous brown oat bread. Internally at Cheesecake it’s all about celebrations for staffers too, says Dina Barmasse, Cheesecake’s SVP of Human Resources.It’s a culture that Barmasse and team work hard to cultivate. She explains why even new menu items are an excuse for a party, why the company trains its staffers even for a post-Cheesecake career, and what makes a person “so Cheesecake.”Glassdoor: The Cheesecake Factory has an obvious public-facing aspect with the restaurants. How do you and your team build a culture that permeates through all functions, from a cashier at a restaurant to a staffer in corporate operations? Dina Barmasse: The cultural aspect of The Cheesecake Factory is absolutely paramount for attraction, retention, etc., so HR is very deliberate in working with operations about how we build that. First, our talent selection team works really hard to find and retain the right talent. We call them “So Cheesecake” people. It’s become shorthand: When interviewees would leave the room, if they nailed the interview you would say “Oh, they’re just so Cheesecake.” We started exploring, what do we mean when we say they’re so Cheesecake?Really, what it boils down to is that they ooze warmth and hospitality that comes from within. They radiate positivity. Theyhave extremely high personal standards of excellence, and they love to celebrate and have fun. Of course, there’s different factors and competencies that you’ll look for in different roles, but that is a cultural touchstone for us: how we find the So Cheesecake people. Once we find and hire them, we have appreciation recognition programs that thank our people for their hard work and extra effort that they put in. Working at The Cheesecake Factory is not the easiest job. We are one of the busiest restaurant concepts around. You have to want to work hard here. But we also want to make sure they know how appreciated they are, so we go above and beyond in our appreciation and recognition programs.We have lots of celebrations. If you think of The Cheesecake Factory you probably think of having fun. It’s no different for the people internally. We use every opportunity we can to build camaraderie and celebrate. For example, when we roll out new menu items twice a year it could be fairly perfunctory. But we turn it into a cultural touchstone where we’re able to bring everybody together. We spend a few hours playing games and quizzes, and there are opportunities for the winning team to give money to charities.Our training programs are the best in the industry. When you have 300 menu items, it’s a lot for people to be able to remember. We want to make sure that we’re doing everything we can both on the food, service and hospitality side to set them up for success. The Cheesecake Factory CEO Knows You Might Be Mad At Him For That Irresistible Bread BasketGlassdoor: Cheesecake employees often rave in their Glassdoor reviews about the training they’ve received – that it doesn’t just make them exceptional at their current job, but it really tees them up for overall career success.Dina Barmasse: You just made me very happy when you said that, because that is one of the things that we think about intentionally. We know training is critically important for some people. Let’s say in our kitchen there’s someone for whom this is their career, and they want to learn as much as they can and be able to achieve their career goals with us. But even if they’re not going to stay with us forever, we want people to feel that if you come to work at The Cheesecake Factory, no one is going to teach you more. If you come to The Cheesecake Factory, you’re not making three items. You’re making every item under the sun — we’re going to invest in you and no matter if you stay with us or if you go somewhere else, you’re going to get the best training around. That hopefully attracts people to come to work for us and it hopefully also retains them. But we’re also very happy when it helps people externally to be able to move on to other dreams and aspirations. Certainly, with our kitchen and long menu here, there are a lot of other places people can go and where there may be less challenge. At The Cheesecake Factory, there is definitely that challenge — but that’s also one of the elements of pride that I think is why a lot of people come to us. Setting them up for success is critically important.Glassdoor: The Glassdoor reviews also talk about Cheesecake as a place where employees can give critical feedback.Dina Barmasse: One of the challenges in having more than 200 restaurants is making sure that we have a direct line to hear the best ideas and suggestions from people who know it best, which is our staff. We set up a crowdsourcing site called Cake Talk. Every staff member has the opportunity to submit their ideas and suggestions directly to us and our senior leaders, unfiltered. We read every single Cake Talk submission. We take the feedback very seriously, and many times they lead to awesome hallway conversations.Cake Talk lets people vote on the suggestions, so the most popular rise to the top. That gives us a sense of the energy behind that suggestion. We’ve made some wonderful menu changes. We’ve changed the servers’ attire. There’s suggestion after suggestion that has made a real impact.What to Do When You Get Negative Feedback at Work Glassdoor: You mentioned that Cheesecake is a fun but demanding job. How do you retain talent that could go elsewhere for a job with, say, a smaller menu?Dina Barmasse: Restaurants are facing a lot of challenges right now, and it can be a tough environment to retain staff. So we’re really focused on retention. It starts from when they first come in the door. We have revamped our orientation and what we call our “First 60 Days Program.” We know the biggest turnover in a restaurant takes place in the first 60 days. So what can we do from the time that they first come in? How can we deeply understand what is important to them?We have a process in place for our managers to be able to do just that, and to be able to share that information with the other management. Maybe it’s that this person really wants to work, but can’t work nights. He loves the Dodgers and he has three kids. If I understand that, I can meet his needs. Because our restaurants have a very large staff, we basically will do anything to meet people’s expectations around shifts. If they want to work only two days a week, or five days, we’ll try to make that happen. We have enough flexibility because of the number of people, but also because we really try hard to staff our restaurants to meet that. It’s a big selling point for the front-of-house in particular, who may be going to school or doing different things. They want that flexibility so we do it in a way that it’s welcomed. In other words, it’s not a burden. It’s something that we want them to have. That is a different approach to just saying, “Yes, you can have that time off” — but begrudgingly giving it. It only takes that one sigh or hesitation or frown to send a subtle message. We don’t want that. We want the message to be we’re going to do everything we can. We know how hard our staff works, and we want to be able to do this for them. Glassdoor: What keeps you personally at Cheesecake?Dina Barmasse: My answer is probably most people will tell you: When you say you work at The Cheesecake Factory, we all get a pretty universal response. The person’s face lights up. They’ll rave about the wheat bread, tell you about how they go every year on their anniversary. There’s some energy that is there that you can feel — the cultural difference. From an HR standpoint, that is golden. We want to do everything we can so each person is truly personally inspired to live that culture. Tax Accountant – Located in Agoura Hills, CA – Relocation Assistance Available! The Cheesecake Factory San Francisco, CA 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h 3.7★ 3.7★ Kitchen Manager – Tigard/Clackamas The Cheesecake Factory Portland, OR 3.7★ 3.7★ 3.7★ 3.7★ 3.7★ 3.7★ HR Operations Representative (Temporary) The Cheesecake Factory Agoura Hills, CA 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h Restaurant Manager – Queens The Cheesecake Factory Elmhurst, NY Recruitment Marketing Manager – Located in Agoura Hills, CA- Relocation Assistance Available! The Cheesecake Factory Chicago, IL 23 hours ago 23h In-House Leasing Attorney The Cheesecake Factory Elmhurst, NY 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h 3.7★ 23 hours ago 23h Kitchen Manager The Cheesecake Factory Thousand Oaks, CA 23 hours ago 23h Restaurant Manager – Alderwood Mall The Cheesecake Factory Lynnwood, WA 3.7★ See more jobs at The Cheesecake Factory
If you dream about jetting from Atlanta to Abu Dhabi, Oakland to Auckland, you may not want to be stuck in an office all day. Instead of quitting your job to backpack around the globe, get paid and travel at the same time. How, you ask? Delta Airlines is hiring.Delta Air Lines is hiring more than 1,000 crewmembers for 2018. That’s right, you can try your hand at being a flight attendant flying the big blue skies and serving jetsetters just like yourself. When you’re not going over security measures, prepping the plane for arrivals and departures, or tending to guests, you have the chance to explore the world.To qualify, Delta flight attendant applicants must be at least 21 by Jan. 1, have more than one year of experience in customer service, patient care or caring for someone, and education beyond high school. Fluency in a language other than English is also a plus.And although 1,000 open roles seems like a lot, being a flight attendant is a job that, reportedly, only goes to about 1 percent of the more than 100,000 people who apply for it. In fact, Delta reports that it has already received more than 125,000 applications.Just last year, Delta received about 150,000 flight attendant applications, reviewed 35,000 video interviews and 6,000 in-person interviews. After all of that, the Atlanta-based airline hired about 1,200 flight attendants.However, stiff competition shouldn’t deter you from finding a job that fits your life and your inner adventurer. “Earning and wearing the wings of Delta is something our flight attendants are proud of and passionate about, as they should be,” Allison Ausband, Delta Senior Vice President of inflight service, said in a statement. “After making it through the highly competitive and exhaustive selection process, they put all their previous experience and skills to the test during our flight attendant initial training.”According to Glassdoor reviews from flight attendants, candidates were asked a variety of technical and behavioral questions including: Why do you want to work Delta? Describe a time where you had to adjust and change your schedule on short notice. Tell me a time when you had to deal with a co-worker who has unethical behavior.Once the approximately two month process was complete and flight attendants scored the job, the Delta travel privileges and perks were rolled out. After completing 30 days of service with the company, you can use your travel privileges to travel anywhere Delta flies. Family members are also eligible for free and reduced rate travel. Delta also offers excellent benefits from flex spending accounts to life insurance, a 401K, a profit-sharing plan, matching gifts to education programs (up to $2,000 per year) and even an employee-powered scholarship fund, which awarded a total of $1.09 million to 591 recipients in 2017.Now there is an additional perk to getting your wings with the airline. A gig with Delta could also mean Hollywood stardom. Delta has just premiered a reality miniseries about becoming one of its flight attendants. Aptly entitled “Earning Our Wings,” the series chronicles the journeys of some of Delta’s flight-attendants-in-training as they complete a “grueling eight-week training program that tests their limits.” Think: The Real World meets America’s Next Top Model, all at 30,000-feet.Check out the first episode, and apply to one of Delta’s open roles today! Supply Chain Strategic Projects Manager Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h Program Leader, Leaves/Transitional Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 23 hours ago 23h UI Developer Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h Available Jobs at Delta Air Lines, Inc. 23 hours ago 23h 4.2★ Maintenance Utility Employee Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 4.2★ 4.2★ 4.2★ English, Spanish and Portuguese Sales Associate I Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 4.2★ 4.2★ 23 hours ago 23h 4.2★ 4.2★ 4.2★ 23 hours ago 23h Manager – Base Logistics Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA 23 hours ago 23h 4.2★ See more jobs at Delta Air Lines, Inc. Manager, In Flight Field Operations Analysis and Performance Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA Customer Service Agent: Ticketing/Gate Service Agent (Ready Reserve)- Seasonal Employment Delta Air Lines, Inc. Saint Louis, MO Baggage Handler/ Ramp Operations (Ready Reserve)- Seasonal Employment Delta Air Lines, Inc. Chicago, IL 23 hours ago 23h Sr. Marketing Associate, US POS Travel Experience Delta Air Lines, Inc. Atlanta, GA
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe supports Saturday night football.League chiefs are considering adding 7.45pm kick-offs to the fixture schedule in 2019-20 in a bid to take advantage of extra television revenue.Asked for his take on the matter, Howe told the Daily Echo: “I think if you asked every manager around the country when they would like to kick-off, it would probably be 3pm on Saturday because that is what historically we have been accustomed to.“The Premier League has changed that through time. Every club is more adaptable in terms of playing Sundays and Mondays.“Kicking-off at 7.45pm on a Saturday would be no different to kicking-off at 7.45pm on a Tuesday so I wouldn’t be against it. If it works for the Premier League, it is something we would gladly do.“You always have sympathy for supporters when they are travelling huge distances at big costs and the kick-off times make that more inconvenient. That’s when everyone has real sympathy for supporters.”
Some weeks ago, after a speech I gave in North Carolina, Robyn Fehrman came up to me and told me about how she spends her free time. By day, Robyn is a program officer at the Triangle Community Foundation. But in her spare time, she volunteers to raise awareness about homelessness in Durham, NC and raise funds for Genesis Home (a transitional shelter for homeless families with children) through the Tri to End Homelessness campaign. For ten months, she’s been tirelessly raising thousands of dollars with her sister for the cause. I’m thankful there are people like Robyn in the world.Here’s her story:As triathletes and community advocates, my sister Rachel Dirito and I dedicated our 2007 triathlon season to supporting Genesis Home and speaking out. We documented our year on our blog and raised nearly $6,000 – $4,000 of which was matched by a local private foundation. In March, we specifically mentioned Network for Good’s 6 Degrees program in our post. Since I’m a big advocate of getting people like Robyn behind your cause, I asked her to share some advice about how she became an effective superactivist. Here’s her story — and her advice. Wouldn’t you know, it’s the same basic stuff that works so well. Keep these basics in mind as you head into the final stretch of fundraising season 2007. We forget them too often!Robyn says:We found success in the old stand-bys of (1) Asking for money! (2) Thanking donors promptly with handwritten thank you notes and (3) Letting donors know how their money has been used. We also communicated a lot. We recommend that you:1. Use Many Channels: Create buzz by telling your story through multiple “genres.” The Tri to End Homelessness campaign was anchored at our BLOG; however, we also EMAILED friends and family, wore BUTTONS that said “Ask Me About Genesis Home” during training runs/ rides and at races throughout the year, wrote a story for Genesis Home’s NEWSLETTER, met IN PERSON with folks, and sent in stories to LOCAL NEWSPAPERS & MAGAZINES.2. Help folks find a personal connection to your issue. For many folks, homelessness is something they would rather just not think about or something that they have a hard time connecting with. We became that connection through telling our own personal stories about why this issue was important to us. 3. Update folks about your goals. Having a blog helped us stay in touch with our donors/ audience and allowed us to regularly update them on both our fundraising and triathlon goals. These regular updates helped to cultivate ongoing connection. So listen to Robyn – don’t forget to ask, thank and show. And communicate often, in many ways.In honor of her cause, I’m posting this video:
What a Ham, by Mostlysunny1 via flickrA great nonprofit leader I know recently saw a cool online quiz that he could appropropriate for his own work, and his reaction was “Great. I love piggy backing.”It occured to me how rarely I hear this.In our sector, we tend to focus on how little we have and how much more we need. But we would need less if we got more creative about piggy backing – for example, aligning with an issue or news already getting a lot of attention, or riding a demographic trend, or using (with permission, of course) great content developed by other entities. Not much money for audience research? Read other research – or as my buddy Craig LeFebvre says, look at campaigns directed at your audience that work. (Not just those in your issue area — but those that target your audience. The underlying values and messaging could be piggy back material.)In other words, never build when you can borrow.Before you start from scratch on anything, spend an hour seeing what’s already there, what can help you and what stands in your way. Act accordingly.Here are some marketplace forces – aka potential piggies – to get you started:1. Is there a demographic, lifestyle, social, health, natural or economic trend that we can ride? What trends might bring attention to our cause?2. Are laws or regs in place that could help us succeed?3. Is there research being released that is attracting publicity and bolsters our case?4. What’s got the eye of the media? Can we play off that story?5. What companies benefit if we succeed? Can we co-opt them?6. Who else is talking about our issue and how could they help influence our audiences?7. What content or material has already been developed that we can use?An example of piggy backing in my book is the Five a Day campaign. That highly successful campaign to get us eating more fruits and veggies piggy backed onto the increasing number of people overwhelmed by their busy lifestyles by packaging fruits and veggies so they were more easy and convenient to consume – the original fast food.Another example is Network for Good’s own Learning Center. We didn’t start from scratch in creating a site with original articles – we feature the work of the many smart writers and bloggers who’ve already written great material.The lesson? Piggy backing often makes us more effective. It’s not about scrimping and stealing. It’s about riding on the back of what has already been built and has momentum in the marketplace.
Posted on February 13, 2014November 13, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Next Thursday, February 20th, the Woodrow Wilson Center will be hosting an event on Improving Maternal Health Through Universal Health Coverage, where the speakers will present evidence from Afghanistan, Mexico, Rwanda, and Thailand, which:demonstrates the potential of universal health coverage to improve women’s health outcomes and equity, while offering vital insights about how to strengthen the design, implementation, and measurement of universal health coverage schemes elsewhere.Universal health coverage is expected to figure prominently in the post-2015 development framework. Though maternal mortality and other women’s health targets are falling behind the MDG goals, universal healthcare may be the solution for maternal mortality goal setting post-2015.Speakers will include Dr. Ana Langer, Dr. Laura Laski, and Dr. Jonathan Quick.Please RSVP to the event here. If you are unable to attend, there will be a video of the presentation on the Wilson Center’s website after the event. You can also follow live on twitter using #MHdialogue.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
Have you ever had a client who, no matter what you tried to do to resolve an issue, was still dissatisfied with your work? Trying to maintain a healthy balance between meeting your clients’ needs, providing exceptional customer service, and not wasting your time and energy can be a delicate, but not impossible, balance.The good news is that the overwhelming majority of your clients will be pleased with your work. But that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have a plan in place for the outliers. Here’s how to be prepared:What is your refund refund/return policy?Make sure that your refund policy is clear. You can add a clause to your contract or include your policy in writing. If you sell a product, you may want to also include a return policy. Be sure to be explicit about who is responsible for return shipping as these costs can add up for you.When you offer a time-consuming service, a refund policy can be tricky. If you’re an editor, you can’t recoup the time spent. As such, if a client is unhappy, the better option is to work with them to resolve the issue. For example, offer a printed or electronic form where the client can document the changes that they want. Documentation is not only archivalable, but it also cuts down on ambiguity and unnecessarily volleying back and forth.Check the contractDoes the client understand what they paid for? By asking the client to express their concerns in writing, you’ll be able to ascertain if their expectations are realistic and, most importantly, contractual.While clients sometimes use dissatisfaction as an excuse to get services that they did not pay for, most will gladly work to address any issues.Maintaining the relationshipShould you offer a discount on a future service? For many of us, word of mouth coupled with loyal customers have afforded us opportunities to grow and expand. The thought of having a colony of disgruntled clients out there may be disconcerting, so you may want offer some type of olive branch if the client’s concerns are warranted.I am not a big fan of offering discounts on completed services. Instead, you may want to consider offering clients a discount on a future service — one that will add value to the work so far. Thinking about future transactions also demonstrates to the client that you are sincere about maintaining them as a client and that you care about their concerns.If all fails?Being clear about your refund policy, working with your client, and offering a discount on a future service should help you make amends with an unhappy client. However, some clients will just never be satisfied. Be as proactive and prepared as possible, but also stand by your work, do your absolute best, and you will attract clients who appreciate you.
So you have debt. As you probably know, you’re suffering in good company. According to the Federal Reserve, total household debt is at a staggering $13.86 trillion — and has been steadily climbing. While you might be one of millions… Full Story,We’ve all heard the expression “less is more,” and the concept of minimalism embraces that fully. While it is not a new concept, the minimalism trend has gained popularity in recent years, especially amongst Millennials in the United States. From… Full Story,Saving more money is one of those big goals that a lot of people have, but get stuck. I know this because we use to be right there too. The year would fly by and we were nowhere near our goal…. Full Story,Have you ever heard of “discretionary income” but felt unsure about exactly what it means? You’re not alone. Many people are aware of what they spend, but not the financial lingo behind it. Discretionary income refers to the remaining funds… Full Story,Mastering the personal finance basics feels pretty good. Getting a firm grasp on your expenses and budgeting like a pro is a reason to celebrate—you’re building the foundation for a solid financial future! This, of course, goes hand in hand… Full Story,While the traditional definition of financial freedom is that you have enough in investments, savings, and passive income that you don’t have to ever work for money again, it can also mean that you reach a point where you don’t… Full Story,Do you ever feel on edge because you’re not sure if you have enough in your bank account to cover your bills and put food on the table? If so, you’re far from alone. A recent study by the United… Full Story,Starting your journey toward financial fitness can be overwhelming. If you take a gander at the Center for Financial Services and Innovation (CFSI)’s eight key indicators of financial health, which include spending less than your income, having sufficient living expenses… Full Story,This Independence Day, as with each 4th of July, I’m reminded of the great leap of faith my parents took more than 37 years ago when they bought one-way tickets to the United States. Their move from their embattled Iran… Full Story,Earlier this month I had a major #fangirl moment. It was a full #fangirl evening, in fact, when I teamed up with New York Times bestselling author and Girlboss founder Sophia Amoroso to share in a very special money event…. Full Story
You want it all – who doesn’t?Unfortunately, for most of us it’s not so easy and there is no “silver bullet” to achieving all of your financial goals.I must confess that I am weary (and wary) of blog posts that proclaim three easy steps to this and 5 simple ways to that… Meeting your financial goals takes planning and discipline, and, even then, there are no guarantees.However, there are some universal truths that can improve your chances of hitting your most important objectives.If juggling multiple financial goals seems overwhelming, check out these practical tips to help you with your planning.Step One: Get a Clear PictureList every savings goal that you’d ideally like to achieve. Don’t hold back – the time for self-editing will come later.Just free-flow all of your objectives: retirement savings, building a backyard deck, buying a new car, sending your children to a private college.Next, list your ideal time horizon associated with each goal. Certain goals have hard deadlines.Your children, for example, will most likely go to college immediately after they graduate high school. Your roof and gutters must be replaced within the next 12 months.Other goals have deadlines within a broader window of time. You might want to buy a vacation home within the next 5 to 10 years. You and your spouse might want to retire within 20 to 25 years.Great – now that you know both your goals and your deadlines, work backwards to calculate how much you’ll need to save every month in order to achieve every goal.If you want to buy a $24,000 car in 2 years, you’ll need to save $1,000 per month. If you want a $60,000 college fund for your children within the next 12 years, you’ll need to save $416 per month.For retirement savings, think about how much money you currently need to maintain your lifestyle, how much you can expect your earnings to grow between now and retirement, and how much will you need when you’re retired.Did the final figure overwhelm you?Many people complete this exercise and realize the amount they’d need to save each month is more than they earn!Don’t worry – the final stage within this step is to prioritize. Now you know how much you’d need to save in order to reach each goal by your ideal deadline.Start by making sure you are saving enough for retirement. Once this in place, pick the other goals that you can afford to save for, based on their importance and timeline.The importance of this exercise, as painstaking as it may seem, is to help you develop a realistic plan.You may have to forego the dream vacation home, but you’ll be on track for your kid’s college savings and a more secure retirement.Often, without a proper plan that you can “touch and see”, you may find yourself on a path to neither.Step Two: Be Tax Smart and Account SavvyNot all savings should go into the same accounts.The money you’re setting aside for the new car you want to buy in the next three months should go into a high-interest savings account, but the money you’re setting aside for college and retirement should take advantage of accounts that have tax incentives, such as a 401(k), IRA, or 529 plan.Set up an automatic savings plan that directs your money into the appropriate accounts.Instead of manually transferring money into your savings each month, automate the process. You’ll save more money when the process is hands-off.Step Three: Invest WiselyNow that your money is accumulating in the best vehicles for your goals, your final step is managing those accounts to make sure the cash you’re saving is optimized.For goals that have a longer time horizon, like retirement, you’ll want to invest the money to optimize your returns (without taking undue risk).I’ve spent the last 12 years in financial services, and currently work with a team that collectively has over 100 years’ experience in wealth management.I’m not going to pretend I can distil all of that expertise into one paragraph that is the perfect fit for your personal investment strategy.When it comes to investing, one size does not fit all.Again, however, there are some basic steps that can help frame your approach to ensure you have a better chance of getting it right.The first step to investing wisely is deciding how to allocate your savings. Asset allocation is widely regarded as the most important determinant of the performance of your portfolio.This means allocating your assets among different asset classes (like stocks and bonds) according to your age, risk tolerance, time horizon and other personal factors.The ideal mix of assets is one that achieves the highest level of returns given the risk you are willing to take.Generally, the more time you have until retirement, the more capacity your portfolio should have for higher-risk investments like stocks.[Related Article: 3 Steps to Better Asset Allocation ]Then, you’ll need to select quality funds in each asset class. Be wary of only looking at a single data point like the fund’s year-to-date performance as your selection criteria.Other attributes, like fund fees (expense ratio) and volatility, for example, should all come into the picture.Generally, there is a lot to be said for low cost index funds as forming the foundation of your well-diversified portfolio.And you can’t just “set it and forget it.” Once you’ve purchased your funds, you should rebalance at least once a year to keep your portfolio on track.Sound overwhelming? Don’t worry.Online investment advisors like Jemstep.com can offer an individualized investment strategy and unbiased buy/sell recommendations based on your unique profile.Rather than leaving everything to “lady luck”, approaching multiple financial goals – including a mix of short-term and long-term goals – with clear priorities and a plan will improve your chances of success.Kevin Cimring is CEO of Jemstep, an online investment advisor that helps people lock in more money for retirement. Using patented technology and proven portfolio management methodologies, Jemstep tells users exactly what to buy and sell to maximize their returns without undue risk, avoid high fees, and reduce taxes. Jemstep’s easy-to-use website takes the complexity, difficulty, and anxiety out of investing. A Registered Investment Advisor with the SEC, Jemstep is led by a team of experts with over 100 years’ combined experience in financial management and technology innovation and development. Learn more at Jemstep.com.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related Post navigation
The average person may see anywhere between 4,000 and 10,000 ads in a single day. From binge-watching your favorite shows to checking the pile of coupons in your mailbox, advertisers have inundated our lives. Most of the ads we see… Full Story,Dressing up for Halloween is one of the best parts of the holiday, especially if you’re a creative person. But buying a Halloween costume can get expensive, with many costing more than $50 a pop. And unless you plan to… Full Story,You may not find it on an official calendar anywhere, but Friendsgiving is a newer holiday that has gained popularity in recent years. Much like Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving is a time to gather around the table with loved ones in the… Full Story,My birthday is on Halloween, so every year I get super excited. I plan what my costume will be, decide how I want to celebrate and text all my friends to let them know. Last year, I was finally able… Full Story,Not much of a football fan? Don’t know what all the cheesehead hat-wearing and face paint-smearing is all about? Skip hanging out at the local sports bar or sitting in the stands at a game, and put on your entrepreneurial… Full Story,Living paycheck to paycheck can feel like an endless scramble. Rent is due on the first but your paycheck won’t clear until the second. On top of everything, you need to pay for groceries, a bus ticket, and utilities before… Full Story,Decision fatigue is the decline in energy and focus you experience after making too many decisions. This mental drain causes your brain to abandon your willpower in order to seek more immediate rewards, which leads to poor decision making and… Full Story,If you ask a random person on the street what they do, chances are they have a lot of slashes and hyphens in their job titles. In this day and age, if you don’t have multiple sources of income… Full Story,Do you consider yourself a financially responsible young adult? Personally, I like to think that my finances are mostly in order. Rent, student loans, car payments—everything big is blocked off nicely. If the math works out right, I have a… Full Story,In the financial world, nothing evokes feelings of terror quite like the word “bankruptcy”. It’s become synonymous with a complete and utter collapse of one’s finances – a black hole that’s almost impossible to climb out of. When you declare… Full Story
When the going gets tough, you may ask if your relationship is still worth fighting for. Here are the 10 signs that tell you to keep at it!According to the American Psychological Association, “40 to 50 percent of married couples in the United States divorce.” In an age that values throwing things away instead of fixing them, are we doing this to our relationships too?The numbers certainly seem to say so as according to a piece published on Huffington Post’s site, “More than 200 times the number of couples divorce today than a century ago, despite there being fewer couples marrying.”So what does this say about our society? In my humble opinion, this simply means that our fickleness has robbed us of our ability to appreciate our relationships.Everything is too fast paced nowadays, even our thoughts. We need to calm down, slow down and really take time to think about what we want from our romantic relationships, and whether they are worth keeping if things get bad.How can you tell if you should stay in your relationship?Every relationship is different, every partner is different, everybody’s experiences are different. However, if you do not know where to start, here are 10 general signs that may indicate staying is a good idea. Keep these pointers in mind when you hunker down to weigh in the pros and cons of keeping the relationship.#1 You have invested a lot. Investing in your relationship is a natural part of being in one. It could be time, money, tears and anything else. For example, if you were in a long distance relationship with your partner, and you finally figured out how to physically be together, then you certainly need to give your current relationship a chance. There is no way you did all that fighting and sacrificing for nothing.Another example is having financial investments together, not just in the relationship, but in other aspects of life such as assets and businesses. Many long term couples buy property together and the same can be said of a husband-wife sort of business team. The more you have invested, the harder you should think about walking away.#2 You’ve been together for a while. If this relationship has been a long term one, you may want to suck it up and power through. All the time and energy that you have put into making it work thus far is not to be scoffed at. In this situation, you have to think about your partner as well. There is nothing worse than dedicating love, time and effort into something, and then having the one you care about throw it all away.#3 You have commitments. You should seriously consider staying if you and your partner have already built a life together and share multiple responsibilities. An example is kids. Unlike pieces of furniture that can be easily discarded or divided, kids are a whole different story. If you have kids together, then the pull to stay together should be much stronger.Countless researchers and behaviorists have attested to the fact that children need a stable and loving household to flourish. Other commitments like pets and financial responsibilities should also be considered.#4 You’re for more than just to fend off loneliness. If you are with your partner simply because you fear being alone, then it is not a good sign. However, if the reasons you are together extend beyond mere loneliness, then it is a sign that you should stay.Being with someone is more than just filling a void and depending on another person to make you feel whole. It encompasses various levels of emotional and physical aspects and if you can confidently list down the myriad positive reasons you are with your partner, then keeping the relationship alive is certainly important.#5 You uplift each other. You are probably pondering whether to stay or go because you are going through a difficult time with your partner. Before making that decision, look back on all the times you spent together, and determine whether you lift each other up more than bring each other down. If negativity pervades every aspect of your relationship and support is lacking, you can pack up right now.On the other hand, if you find that you bring out the best in each other despite all the troubles and bickering, you can chalk it up as a sign that you should keep the relationship going. Remember that being with someone is not always rainbows and butterflies. There will be ugly times in the mix, but if the rainbows and butterflies outshine the darkness, then you have a good thing going.#6 You can be yourself. The fact that you can be yourself when you are around your partner should be enough of an indication that you should stay together. We tend to hide who we truly are in everyday life. It could be at work, at school, at the supermarket, at parties or anywhere else in public. It is apparent in the way we dress, think, converse and behave.Whether it is leading others to believe that you make more money than you really do by driving a nice car, or letting others think that you are smarter than you really are by voicing meaningless opinions, we are all guilty of projecting somewhat of a farce around others. However, if you can completely let down your guard and still be loved and accepted by your partner, then it is a sign that you should keep the relationship alive.#7 You still laugh together. Beloved American essayist and biographer Agnes Repplier once said, “We cannot really love anyone with whom we never laugh.” If you can still laugh and have fun with your partner after years together, then you know that the relationship is worth keeping.Nothing is better than being able to share light hearted moments with the person you care about. If the positivity is apparent then you should be thankful for it and forge through with the relationship, despite all the hardships that you have to endure as a couple.#8 You can’t imagine life without your partner. To be honest, I have thought about leaving my partner of six years on several occasions. These thoughts cropped up during particularly dire and uneasy periods involving negative emotions like distrust, paranoia, dissatisfaction, irritation and so on. However, these emotions are always quashed every time I imagine my life without him. In spite of the sporadic difficulties that come up, I compare what my life was like prior to meeting him and what it is like now.I can honestly say that even though we have our differences and engage in the occasional fight, life is so much better with him around. Nothing can overshadow the laughter, good times, joy and love that we share. If you feel the same way about your partner, then you know that your relationship is worth fighting for.#9 There is honesty and trust in your relationship. Honesty and trust are two very important values in relationships. Without them, your relationship will fail, and both parties will end up drowning in misery. If both of you think that trust and honesty are very important to the health of your partnership, then you should definitely keep going.Relationships are a two way street, so if only one party values honesty and trust, it will not work out no matter how much you want to keep going.#10 There’s still some chemistry between you. If you still lust after your sweetheart, then you know that it is a good sign. Not many couples are able to keep the flames of passion going after spending a significant period of time together but if you two are able to, then why not give the relationship another go? Maybe all you need is a sexy romp in the hay to make you appreciate just how wonderful things are.It’s easy to consider leaving your partner when you’re going through a rough patch. But when you look back and see that you have a really great thing going, it can prevent you from giving up and push you to keep working together. Source
Extreme Fires Can Cause Lasting DamageWhile fire is a natural part of many temperate and boreal forest ecosystems, extreme fires can have a lasting effect on the landscape’s natural fire cycle. Recent fires in the United States are larger or hotter than they have been historically, and have repeatedly burned the same land. Therefore trees that may have survived previous fires are being killed, while the trees that might have grown back are hampered by drought and stress from climate change.Tree cover loss data from the University of Maryland and Google shows large patches of loss in northern California’s major forests, which match with the largest annual spike seen in the graphic above. In fact, the location of every major forest fire in California reported in fire summaries and news coverage from 2012 can be found as a prominent pink swath of tree cover loss on GFW (these data measure tree removal and mortality, indicating where fire may have killed trees). This is an important insight for those that use GFW and seek to understand how tree cover loss relates to fire and other activities like logging.2012 Tree Cover Loss Data from Hansen/UMD/Google/USGS/NASA as displayed on Global Forest Watch Following Fires as They HappenTechnology has significantly improved our ability to discover fire trends and clearly see the impact of forest fires. With forest fires affecting hundreds of U.S. residences every year, it is increasingly important to access near-real time data to identify where a blaze is happening, determine how the wind direction will blow smoke across local communities, and monitor damages.While the threats of forest fires may be increasing, better monitoring systems can help prevent blazes from forever altering the American landscape. Visit Global Forest Watch to start monitoring forests in your area. Image of Intact Forests in Alaska from 6/25/2015 While fires in Indonesia may be making headlines recently, unprecedented forest fires have also scorched the Western United States this year, from the pristine forests of Alaska to the rocky desert foothills of California. This summer, fires in California burned hundreds of homes, triggering a state of emergency. Nationwide, more than 8 million acres have burned so far this year, surpassing 2012 as the worst U.S. fire year on record in terms of area burned (records date back to 1960).While wildfires are a natural occurrence in many of these forests (making them distinct from Indonesia’s forest and agricultural fires), their frequency and intensity have made many experts worried about the forest’s ability to recover. Experts have noted that climate change—leading to higher annual temperatures, widespread tree death due to pests, and extreme drought—means that this year’s unusually intense fires could be a sign of the new normal.Global Forest Watch Fires (GFW) allows anyone to see the movement of forest fires in near-real time, including data on wind direction and air quality. Whether it’s monitoring a fire burning near your home, watching the direction of smoke blowing towards your city, or studying fire trends from recent years, this information enables citizens to respond quickly and efficiently to the threat of wildfires.By using Global Forest Watch, we gathered some insights on the fires raging through the United States:California, Oregon, Washington and Alaska Experienced Extreme Fires in 2015We used Global Forest Watch to examine trends in NASA fire alerts over the past five fire seasons, and to identify how wildfires have impacted forests (the fire alerts indicate heat anomalies within a 1 km by 1 km area that are picked up by satellites, but do not measure the exact extent or intensity of the fire).Although this year’s fire season is not over, August’s dramatic peak of more than 30,000 fire alerts puts 2015 as the worst fire season in the past five years, mostly due to Alaska’s record-breaking numbers. More than 50 percent of all 2015 fire alerts in the United States were located in Washington, Oregon, California and Alaska, all four of which are experiencing various levels of drought, warm winters and exceptionally dry summers this year. The most alarming example is Alaska, with record-high numbers of fire alerts this summer. Almost 16,000 fire alerts occurred this year alone, far more than in the rest of the western U.S. states combined. A recent study showed that fires in Alaska’s Yukon Flats are more severe than any time in the last 10,000 years.Intact Forest Landscapes Have Been Hit Hard by FiresGFW data shows that approximately 41 percent of fire alerts this year have occurred in Intact Forest Landscapes, pristine forest areas untouched by human activity such as roads or extensive logging. Intact Forest Landscapes play a critical role in maintaining biodiversity, regulating the climate and purifying global air and water systems. The largest area of U.S. Intact Forests can be found in Alaska, where more than 2 million hectares (5 million acres) have burned so far this year.GFW and partners published research showing human activity is disturbing Intact Forests more and more every year, particularly through fragmentation by roads and logging. As development opens up remote areas, previously inaccessible forests like those in Alaska are increasingly in reach of human-caused accidental fires. Although fires are natural, and even necessary in many temperate and boreal forests, the National Park Service estimates that 90 percent of U.S. forest fires are human-caused, potentially altering natural cycles. This may be compounded by climate change, especially given the climate feedback loops created by melting and thawing permafrost, which covers 80 percent of Alaska and stores vast amounts of carbon. 2012 also marked a peak fire season for Washington, with one of the most extensive burn areas around the base of Mount Adams in Gifford Pinchot National Park. Near-real time fire alerts tell us that this area is once again burning. An active fire recently occurred on the northeast side of the mountain and circled the eastern slopes, progressively burning a ring around this wilderness area. Historical tree cover loss and near-real time alerts together provide a powerful tracking tool that allows us to see local trends over time. August 23, 2012. Image from MODIS.
But, what’s more important is whether they’re committed to doing all the work. . How much time do you have to dedicate to this? Do you like to build relationships with new people? Do you pick up new software fairly easily? Spending the time Why is this important to you? Are you decent at interpreting graphs and charts? Originally published Dec 29, 2008 8:45:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 Inbound Marketing Do you like to write? Are you good at writing? . I try to ask all of these questions before we talk about internet marketing. Of course, we talk specifics about blogging, SEO, keyword research, landing pages, lead capture best practices, etc. Topics: Are you interested in learning some new skills? I talk to a lot of business owners and in-house marketers every week. When someone is interested in our How are you planning to hit your goals next year? If you’re considering inbound lead generation as a way to grow your business (and you should be), you should first answer the questions above. Then, you should talk to experts about how you’re going to pull it off and what How many leads and new clients do you need to hit your growth goals next month, next year? If you’ve made the committment to internet mareketing and you’re willing to share some of your answers to the questions above, it would certainly help people who haven’t made the full committment yet. Please share. ( , I first ask them a bunch of questions about their goals, constraints, abilities and most importantly: their commitment. Some of them include: The software they use certainly matters. I’d get fired if I said otherwise. But, it’s far less important than their committment level. What happens if you don’t hit these goals? to learn how to turn your website into an internet marketing machine. Download the free webinar Why are you interested in inbound marketing? Photo by Eschipul .) data, software and skills Webinar: Rethinking Marketing Want to learn more about how you can use inbound marketing to grow your business? How are you doing now against the goals you set last year? you need. marketing software Learning new internet marketing skills Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Buyer Personas Originally published Apr 13, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated August 27 2017 Conducting market research is often the starting point for key components of businesses’ marketing and sales strategies. It’s what helps you draft personas, clarify your marketing messaging, set product marketing direction, and build your sales playbook.But when you’re tasked to sit down and actually … do it … many marketers draw a blank. Do we round up Don Draper and set up an expensive, time-intensive focus group behind two way mirrors? Isn’t that what the big guns do when they conduct market research?The big guns — and even smaller companies — certainly use the two-way mirror approach, but consider that we also have this amazing thing called the internet. That means we can all conduct market research for less money, across a larger sample size, and with less time investment. This post will explain both the methodology you should implement when conducting any market research, and highlight some of the tools and tactics available to you to easily glean more insight into your target audience.Click here to get started with our free market research kit.First, How to Conduct Market ResearchBefore we get into the tools and tactics you can use to conduct your market research, let’s talk about a solid methodology with which you should approach your research.1) What do you want to know? The first key to conducting market research effectively is identifying something specific you’re trying to figure out. Trying to answer everything in one round of market research usually means you won’t get meaningful answers to anything. Here are some of the things many businesses are trying to figure out when conducting market research — be sure to drill down into these categories to make it specific to your business.Whether you’re solving a problem people actually haveWhat competitors your target audience is using for their current solutionWhat people don’t like about their current solutionHow much someone is willing to pay for a solutionWhether a new product or add-on is enticingDemographic and psychographic informationHow your target audience likes to communicate and consume information2) Draft your questions and hypotheses for how people will answer. This will help you think through logical flows and the potential follow-up questions you should ask to get a comprehensive set of data. There’s nothing worse than conducting your market research, and upon analyzing the results, realizing there was an entire branch of logic you hadn’t anticipated that requires you to conduct your research again. For example, if you’re doing market research to determine whether an add-on service would be interesting to your current customers, you’d probably want to ask different follow-up questions to those who responded positive, negatively, and indifferently. Walk through hypothetical conversations with each of those groups, and document all of the questions you’d like to ask before beginning your research.3) Find the right group of people for your market research. Is your research targeted toward customers (as opposed to leads or the general public)? If so, what qualities should those customers possess? For example, if HubSpot was gauging interest in an add-on service, we might only need feedback from customers that use the Professional package of our software, and eliminate those using the Basic or Enterprise levels of the software. Or if we wanted to gauge whether the inclusion of that add-on service would help convert more leads, we might consult leads in our database only within a certain business size that we know are interested in the Professional version of the software.4) Determine the best method to ask your questions. We’re going to get into tools and tactics in the next sections of this post, but selecting the right method for administering market research is key for getting the best results. For example, if you’re like our very own Laura “@Pistachio” Fitton and you have a large Twitter following, it might make more sense to leverage that Twitter following to do market research rather than creating a survey. Or perhaps you have an extremely engaged segment of your email list that also happens to be the target audience for this research — consider using email as a key tool in your market research instead!5) Analyze your findings. After you conduct your research and collect your findings, it’s time to get analyzing. Depending on what type of data you’re pulling in — quantitative or qualitative — you may need to set a threshold that helps you determine your next steps. For example, if your research is quantitative and you were looking to gauge interest in that add-on service we keep talking about, what number of people need to respond positively, negative, and indifferently to pursue or nix the project? Or perhaps you’re looking for more qualitative feedback — like different ways someone would use one of your products. Look for new ways people are using the product you hadn’t considered to drive the improvements you make and identify problems you didn’t even realize people had that you could solve.How to Craft Your Market Research SurveySurveys are the most common method of administering online market research, so we’re going to start by digging deep into the right and wrong way to administer them — because there are tons of little things that make a big difference in the results you get!Surveys are fantastic for quantitative research, especially since most survey tools like SurveyMonkey and Zoomerang (both tools I’ve used successfully in the past) come with reporting options that sort the data for you, and allow you to export and manipulate the data as needed. But you can also easily loop in qualitative analysis, or use survey tools for future in-depth qualitative analysis that becomes necessary as you learn more from the data you collect. (Tip: If you’re just looking to get quick insights, Google has just launched a tool called Consumer Surveys that lets you ask a question and get aggregated responses and accompanying data for $0.10 per response.)When drafting your survey, take pains to ensure every question you ask truly needs to be asked; if your survey is too long, you’ll suffer a lower rate of completion. There are two things you can do to help respondents fill out the survey in its entirety. First, include a progress bar so respondents know there’s an end in sight — otherwise, they could be one question away from completion but think they’re several minutes away, causing them to abandon the survey.You should also set expectations up front for how much time the survey will take. If after editing out questions you don’t truly need to ask, you are still left with a survey that will take 5 minutes to complete (which is pretty long for an online survey), that’s okay! Tell respondents that the survey should take 5 minutes to complete, that their feedback is valuable, and why you need that feedback from them specifically. For a long survey, this up-front admission will result in less people starting the survey, but a higher proportion of those who begin the survey will complete it — giving you higher quality results for your market research.Online survey tools are also fantastic research mechanisms because of the built-in logic functionality in most tools. This allows you to better target your questions to survey respondents as they self-identify through their answers to your questions. For example, perhaps you’re trying to beef up your buyer personas a bit. Your lead intelligence tells you the industry and company size of your leads, but you really need to get a handle on job titles, too, because your personas really revolve around the C-suite and middle management. The logic in survey tools will let you begin with a question about job titles, and based on the response, send respondents down two different logic trees with two different sets of questions. So while you may think your market research is limited to your lead intelligence, online surveys tools with logic functionality let you segment on the fly for higher quality information.If you’re conducting qualitative research in your online surveys, you’ll need to be careful with the way you phrase your questions. There’s a fine balance between being open-ended so as to encourage honesty, and being vague to the point of confusion. On the other end of the spectrum, survey questions can often be so specific that they’re unintentionally leading — infusing the answer the marketer expects to hear right into the question and answer choices. For example, a survey question might be structured:Would you use product X for Y, Z, or other?While you provided “other” as an option, you’re already planting a couple ideas in the respondents’ minds about the correct way to use your product that they may not have had without your direction. Instead, phrase a question of this nature more open-ended, like:Explain some of the ways you might use product X when at the office.This phrasing lets respondents answer your question without the preconceived notions that come with your product knowledge, but also limits the scope of the answer by adding a clause like “when at the office” at the end to help narrow their frame of mind enough to provide a detailed answer. (Tip: When asking open ended questions, you’ll need to use a text box. Make the size of the text box commensurate with the length of answer you hope to receive. If respondents see a two-line text box, you’ll probably receive a short sentence. If they see they have 8 lines of space, you’ll likely receive a more in-depth response.)Finally, once you analyze the results of your survey, you may find you’d like to follow up with your respondents verbally. Prepare for this instance by including a question at the end of the survey asking if the respondent would be willing to speak with someone from your company on the phone to hear more about their opinions. While not everyone’s cup of tea, plenty of people are excited to share their thoughts on the phone — it makes them feel special and engaged with your company! If you do administer phone interviews, it’s recommended that you record those calls (disclosing the recording to your respondent, of course) so they can be transcribed by a third-party service. This frees you from the burden of note-taking during calls, lets you focus on asking the right follow-up questions, and lets a larger group analyze what was said objectively, not what you think you heard the respondent saying.Market Research Doesn’t End With Surveys!While online surveys are the most common way marketers and business owners collect market research insights, there are other ways to get the intelligence you need. You’ll probably find, however, that a mix of these tools with more calculated online surveys is a helpful approach to stay connected with the opinions of your leads, customers, and the general market.Hop on Social MediaYou’ve probably heard plenty of success stories about using social media for feedback (we’ve written an entire blog post on how to do it), so why not make use of it for your market research? Social media market research is ideal for getting qualitative feedback, and getting it quickly. And luckily, social media is getting better and better at targeting — in fact, just yesterday LinkedIn announced more robust targeting functionality for users! Couple that with Twitter’s list functionality, Google+ Circles, and Facebook lists, and you’ve got the ability to get your questions out to the exact audience you’re targeting for information.Dive In to Your Marketing AnalyticsMarket researchers can get more quantitative insights from their marketing analytics — about everything from how people consume information, to what they think of your product, service, or brand, to what problems they’re facing in your industry that you might be able to solve. For example, instead of setting up a survey to determine which offer is more enticing, you can simply set up an A/B test to see whether a BOGO or 30% off coupon gets better conversion rates. Or if you’re trying to identify opportunities for expanded service offerings, you might take a look at your search analytics. Looking at the search terms people are typing can help you understand not only the problems people face, but whether they consider your product a solution for those problems.Perhaps you notice that there’s growing volume around the search term “how to treat a unicorn with a gluten allergy.” Whoa, did you know that gluten allergies are on the rise in unicorns? Is that a space you want to play in? If so, and you begin creating content and solutions for it, take a look at whether the traffic that comes to your site on that term actually converts. If not, perhaps you haven’t designed a solution that meets the needs of the gluten-allergic unicorn community.Leverage Public RecordsYou can even make use of public records to get the market information you need! Inc.com compiled a fantastic list of government resources that provides demographic information, three valuable ones which I’ve listed below:FedStats: This site publishes government statistics, like statistical profiles of states, cities, and counties.The Census Bureau: This site gives you access to census data.The Census Bureau’s Quick Facts: This site gives quick facts about people, businesses, and geography.Finally, think of market research as an ongoing process. Often, the insights you glean result in more detailed and interested questions you’d like to ask. Continue to communicate with your target audience and customers so you can learn what their needs are and what you can do to meet them.What tips do you have for marketers looking to conduct market research?Image credit: janoma.cl
Originally published Mar 12, 2013 9:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 When you’re making marketing decisions every day, you probably don’t think about taking some time out to run an experiment. You’re busy writing email copy, designing your latest landing page, or crafting the perfect social media update — not creating tests, optimizing treatments, or shattering null hypotheses.But what if I told you that the latter three actions could completely transform the way you do the first three, help you make solid decisions based on data, and generate even more leads for your business?A/B testing, also known as split testing, allows you to do just that. To perform an A/B test, marketers take two different versions of one piece of content (often landing pages, emails, and calls-to-action) and test them with two similarly sized audiences. To find out which test won, marketers measure whether the winning test is statistically significant with a certain level of confidence (95% or more). Using split testing in your marketing helps you optimize your assets for increased leads and converted customers. Unfortunately, this isn’t what everyone hears about A/B testing. There are a ton of myths out there that prevent smart marketers from making accurate, data-driven decisions. To keep you from landing in that camp, we’re going to debunk some of the most common A/B testing myths out there. Let’s get started!Myth #1: Marketers’ instincts work better than A/B testing.Even the most talented and experienced marketers can be wrong. After years of experience, many of us have a solid understanding of what generally works to convert visitors into leads, and leads into customers — but instincts shouldn’t be the only thing guiding our decisions.Split testing allows you to use data to drive more traffic to your website and increase conversion rates. In fact, A/B testing has been shown to generate up to 30-40% more leads for B2B sites, and 20-25% more leads for ecommerce sites.The moral of the story here: if you’re relying only on the HIPPO (highest paid person’s opinion) in the room, you’re missing out on the potential for increased revenue.Myth #2: You should use A/B testing before making every single decision.While split testing can help you with many of your marketing decisions, you don’t need to test every single decision you make. Some changes are not worth testing. For example, you don’t need to A/B test the clickthrough rates of these two headlines: “The Marketer’s Guide to Pinterest” and “A Marketer’s Guide to Pinterest.” Though split tests work well for small changes like the color of your CTA, switching out “the” for “a” won’t make a dent in your conversion rates. Now, if you wanted to test two headlines with different positioning — yes, that would indeed warrant an A/B test.Myth #3: A/B testing is not as effective as multivariate testing.A/B testing and multivariate testing (MVT) are both great ways to use data to drive your marketing decisions, but they are used for very different purposes. A/B testing is used for testing one element in two or more different treatments. MVT is used to test the effectiveness of multiple combinations of elements across multiple treatments.For example, an A/B test would be used to test the effect of the CTA color on the conversion rate while all other elements on the page are the same — the traffic sources, type of visitor, layout of the form, and even the accompanying copy and image. You’re trying to answer one direct question: How does the color of the CTA affect conversions? You aren’t trying to explore how combinations of elements affect conversions (e.g. how the combination of the color of the CTA, the number of fields in the form, and the type of image used affect conversions).So it’s not that one test is more effective than another — they’re just … different types of tests!Myth #4: If a treatment works for one marketer, it will work for any marketer.Though there are a ton of A/B testing case studies demonstrating the success of certain layouts, designs, and copy on conversion rates, you should never blindly follow other marketers’ success without testing it on your own first. Each testing situation is different. The original site has different traffic, audiences, products, marketing funnels, and promotions, so what works for that site may not work for yours.That being said, taking a page out of someone else’s marketing plan can be a great jumping off point for your own marketing activities. For example, if you’re looking to improve the clickthrough rate (CTR) on your emails, you might want to try using a personalized sender name. In 2011, we conducted a test to see if including a personal name from someone on the HubSpot marketing team in the email’s “From” field would increase the email CTR. In the test, we saw that the control (From “Hubspot”) had a 0.73% CTR while our treatment (from “Maggie Georgieva, HubSpot”) had a 0.96% CTR — the personalized “From” field was a clear winner with 99.9% confidence.This test worked for our audience, so it may work for yours … or it may not. Use A/B tests to try it for yourself and learn the best tactic for your audience, and your marketing.Myth #5: You need to be a tech-savvy marketer with a large budget to do A/B testing.A/B testing doesn’t have to be expensive. If you’re operating on a near-zero-dollar budget, there are free split testing tools available like Google Analytics’ Content Experiments. Though Google’s tool is free, you will have to be a bit more tech-savvy to implement it.Most paid A/B testing tools, including the one in HubSpot’s all-in-one marketing software, have a higher upfront cost but are much less technologically challenging. Paid tools are obviously more expensive than free tools (duh), but you may be able to work more quickly to cut down on the overhead costs.Besides navigating technology and budget issues, you will need to be comfortable using some math to properly execute a split test. All winning tests must be statistically significant, so you’ll need to know what that means and how to use it to interpret the results. While you can determine if something is statistically significant with pen and paper, you can also use HubSpot’s free A/B testing calculator to figure it out.Ultimately, you’ll need to have different levels of technological and mathematical knowledge depending on what resources you have available, but budgets don’t need to be a barrier to A/B testing if you don’t mind diving into numbers and technology.Myth #6: A/B testing is only for sites with a ton of traffic.Since you only need to study two treatments in A/B testing, you don’t need a ton of visitors to test results — you just need enough to reach statistical significance (the point at which you have at least 95% confidence in the results). Though more visitors can give you more accurate representations of what works and what doesn’t, there isn’t a universal minimum number of visitors you need for an A/B test. All you need is enough people to make sure the test is statistically significant.There also are quite a few free tools out there to help you find how many visitors you need without getting an advanced degree in statistics.Myth #7: A/B testing negatively affects your SEO.One of the frequently asked questions about A/B testing is whether it can hurt your SEO. People think that if you’re testing multiple versions of the same content, your website could be categorized in Google’s algorithm as duplicate content and penalized in the SERPs as a result.This myth is completely false — in fact, Google encourages you to and gives guidelines around how to test your content to get more visitors and conversions on your website, without being penalized for duplicate content. This is one step that can get somewhat technical without A/B testing software that already takes all of this into account for you, but it’s worth the investment since being found by search engines is essential to your inbound marketing success.Myth #8: If one treatment stands out immediately, you don’t need to continue running the rest of the test.One of the most important things to remember when running an A/B test is to always wait until your results are statistically significant. Like waiting for the statistically significant number of visitors, determining the time length to run an A/B test should be based off your confidence interval. Even if one test seems to be winning by a landslide immediately, if the sample size and time frame are not statistically significant yet, you need to keep the test running.If you end up pulling the test before it has a chance to display accurate data, you could end up choosing the wrong test to implement in your marketing — a potentially costly mistake. If you’d like to figure out how long your test needs to run before it reaches statistical significance, try Wingify’s test duration calculator.Myth #9: Winning treatments will always look pretty.One of the reasons that you should A/B test in the first place is to help drive your marketing with data, not subjective opinion. Time after time, A/B tests have proven that landing pages, emails, or CTAs don’t always have to look beautiful … they just have to work better than the alternative. Even if a test isn’t pretty, it still can drive more conversions than one with a more “beautiful” layout. Don’t rely on your judgment of the design — use the A/B testing results to guide your marketing.Myth #10: You’re only measuring one conversion rate.A/B testing results shouldn’t just stop at one metric — you should be examining how your treatment moves multiple metrics. Otherwise, you risk missing larger, more important insights. For example, if you were using an A/B test to see how the color of a CTA affected conversions on your company’s blog, you wouldn’t want to just look at the number of blog subscribers your test drives. You’d want to see how many visitors converted into leads, and how many leads converted into customers, too. You might actually find that the color that converted the most subscribers was resulting in a decrease in leads! And hey, that might be okay, if your goal is subscribers even at the expense of leads. Or, it might cause you to scream in horror and immediately change the color back, knowing that more subscribers aren’t worth it if it’s at the expense of leads.Either way, it demonstrates the importance of looking at more than just one metric when analyzing the results of a test.Myth #11: After you finish your A/B test, you’re done.So you ran an A/B test, gathered a proper sample, reached your confidence interval, and one test won … but you aren’t done yet. Whether you’ve found dramatic results or not, you should keep testing and optimizing your content for conversions and leads. In other words, A/B testing shouldn’t be a one-time experiment — use it to continually adjust and improve your marketing.For example, let’s say that you’ve used an A/B test to determine that a red CTA button increased conversions over a green CTA button. Now that you know which CTA to use, you should try testing which button copy continues to increase your conversion rate. By continuing to use split testing, you can use data to drive your marketing decisions, a smart and cost-effective way to grow your business!What common A/B testing myths have you seen debunked?Image credit: Ken’s Oven Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
So you’ve hunted around on the internet to find a custom font you love and want to use in your marketing … now what? Good news: the hard part’s over — you’ve found a font you love. (If you are still looking, check out this post of free fonts to download.) Bad news: so many people get stuck trying to figure out how to start using that lovely font they’ve just discovered, that they give up and settle for Comic Sans (yikes).But take heart! You’re only a few quick steps away from outfitting your next SlideShare, infographic, or whatever it is you’re making with the fabulous new font.Here’s how to install a font on your computer in just a few minutes. Note, these screenshots were taken with specific operating software versions, but the process to install them on other versions should be very similar. How to Install Fonts on a Mac1) Shut down any program you want to use the font in.Make sure you’re completely shutting down each program, not just hitting the exit button. 2) Download the font to your computer and extract files if necessary.Font files may have a .zip, .otf, or .ttf file extension. If it’s a .zip file, you’ll need to extract the compressed files by double clicking on the file — your Archive Utility will automatically unzip the file. 3) Right click on each font you’d like to add, then choose “Open.” 3) Open Font Book. 4) Select the fonts in your Downloads folder you want to install and drag them to Font Book.5) Open up the program you’d like to use and the font will be there. How to Install Fonts on a PC1) Shut down any program you want to use the font in.2) Download the font to your computer and open zip files if necessary.It may have a .zip, .otf, or .ttf file extension. If it’s a .zip file, you’ll need to extract the compressed files by double clicking on the file — your computer will automatically unzip the file and open the folder inside. Originally published Jun 5, 2013 2:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Topics: 4) Once open, click “Install” to add the font to your computer. 5) Open up the program you’d like to use and the font will be there.And voila! You’re ready to use the font in any program on your computer.Easy as pie, right? What other little nagging how-tos would you like to read a quick tip post on? Leave your ideas with us in the comments — we’ll be sure to give you a shout out if we write about it!Image credit: kpwerker Font Selection Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack