Entrepreneur

How Improv Comedy Can Seriously Grow Your Business
An increasing number of entrepreneurs are recognizing how improv comedy can bring serious benefits to their business, including new ideas and fresh approaches.
Improv can improve teamwork, collaboration and innovation in a workplace. Use of the "Yes, and” technique means team players build on the thoughts of others, rather than shutting down the ideas of their peers by presenting problems and roadblocks.
As an improviser performing in the Twin Cities, I’ve found that the skills used onstage often pay off in the boardroom, especially for those who are fresh arrivals to a team, new to a career or trying to launch business initiatives. These seven improv lessons can help you overcome doubts and add value when and where it’s needed most:
1. Follow the fear.
The late Del Close, a wild force of an actor, writer and teacher of improv — who trained folks like Bill Murray, Tina Fey, the Belushi brothers, Amy Poehler and Stephen Colbert, to name a few — coached actors to live and breathe this mantra: Follow the fear.
If that leap you’re getting ready to make leaves your palms sweaty and your breath short, then do it. If a new idea refuses to be silenced, then go for it. This advice applies especially well to those pursuing a new creative or strategic endeavor.
Often your fear is what’s guiding you. Perhaps the direction is a challenging one, but it’s probably the right one. Trust your instincts and throw your committed effort behind it.
2. Get comfortable existing in chaos.
You’ll never know what’s going to happen next, so don’t try to figure it out. Most projects and initiatives involve a variety of moving parts that come at you from various directions, often with missing details or information. Del Close is said to have described  the Harold, a long-form improv structure, as “like building a 747 in mid-flight.”
If you let uncertainty or chaos derail you, that means lost time and opportunities. Cozy up to chaos and let unknowns (and surprises) fuel your performance rather than hinder it.
Read the rest »

How Improv Comedy Can Seriously Grow Your Business

An increasing number of entrepreneurs are recognizing how improv comedy can bring serious benefits to their business, including new ideas and fresh approaches.

Improv can improve teamwork, collaboration and innovation in a workplace. Use of the "Yes, and” technique means team players build on the thoughts of others, rather than shutting down the ideas of their peers by presenting problems and roadblocks.

As an improviser performing in the Twin Cities, I’ve found that the skills used onstage often pay off in the boardroom, especially for those who are fresh arrivals to a team, new to a career or trying to launch business initiatives. These seven improv lessons can help you overcome doubts and add value when and where it’s needed most:

1. Follow the fear.

The late Del Close, a wild force of an actor, writer and teacher of improv — who trained folks like Bill Murray, Tina Fey, the Belushi brothers, Amy Poehler and Stephen Colbert, to name a few — coached actors to live and breathe this mantra: Follow the fear.

If that leap you’re getting ready to make leaves your palms sweaty and your breath short, then do it. If a new idea refuses to be silenced, then go for it. This advice applies especially well to those pursuing a new creative or strategic endeavor.

Often your fear is what’s guiding you. Perhaps the direction is a challenging one, but it’s probably the right one. Trust your instincts and throw your committed effort behind it.

2. Get comfortable existing in chaos.

You’ll never know what’s going to happen next, so don’t try to figure it out. Most projects and initiatives involve a variety of moving parts that come at you from various directions, often with missing details or information. Del Close is said to have described  the Harold, a long-form improv structure, as “like building a 747 in mid-flight.”

If you let uncertainty or chaos derail you, that means lost time and opportunities. Cozy up to chaos and let unknowns (and surprises) fuel your performance rather than hinder it.

Read the rest »

There’s nothing normal about burning people out.

Basecamp’s Rebel Recipe for Success: 5 Ways the Software Maverick Made Millions by Being Different

“It was madness. We couldn’t even create email addresses for people fast enough.”

Brian Bordainick remembers what it was like to go from a small basement operation to a rapidly growing, venture-backed business — and it wasn’t always easy.

— How to Manage the Unsexy Side of Rapid Expansion

It’s Official: You Can’t Copyright a Selfie Taken By a Monkey »

It’s Official: You Can’t Copyright a Selfie Taken By a Monkey »

6 Steps to Create an Effective BYOD Plan
With workplaces more mobile and interconnected than ever, many employees have the ability to work from home or on the go. While at first glance, having a bring your own device (BYOD) policy in your office can help with flexibility and cutting costs, it could also lead to security issues and major IT headaches if businesses aren’t too careful.
So what can managers and IT departments do to ensure the safety of company data and productivity of their employees?  Well, actually a lot.
Read more » 

6 Steps to Create an Effective BYOD Plan

With workplaces more mobile and interconnected than ever, many employees have the ability to work from home or on the go. While at first glance, having a bring your own device (BYOD) policy in your office can help with flexibility and cutting costs, it could also lead to security issues and major IT headaches if businesses aren’t too careful.

So what can managers and IT departments do to ensure the safety of company data and productivity of their employees?  Well, actually a lot.

Read more » 

Break Out the Office Cake. It Could Change Your Company.

Celebrations work wonders in the brain and meet people’s needs for inclusion, innovation, appreciation and collaboration. By releasing dopamine and other positive neurotransmitters, positive celebrations and intelligent conversations provide ways to socialize and share information while triggering healthy physical and emotional changes in the brain. In fact, the need for celebration is greater than the need for safety. Feeling socially excluded actually activates some of the same neural regions that are activated in response to physical pain and leads disengaged staffers to physically or emotionally check out.

Read more »

Steve Ballmer Goes Bonkers During LA Clippers Introduction

Boom goes the dynamite. 

The Creator of the World's First Pop-Up Ad Apologizes for Everything

8 Ways to Reduce the Stress of Balancing Work and Family

Work-life balance doesn’t always work for entrepreneurs – especially for those just launching a business. And this can cause a lot of stress and anxiety.  But while some founders may need to be burning the midnight oil, there are a few ways to better manage your own business and take care of your family without getting overly stressed out.

Here are eight.

1. Set daily goals. It is important to set goals for yourself before going to work the next day. Setting specific and daily goals for your business can help you stay focused while also saving you time and money in the long run.

When you accomplish these daily goals, you will feel happier, more confident and less stressed when you go home at the end of the day.

2. Delegate. Delegate your business and family responsibilities. If your kids are older, get them and your spouse to assist you with the family tasks. If you are at your job, then delegate some of your responsibilities to your other qualified employees.

If you try to do everything, you will get upset and anxious. A person can only do so much in a given day. If you feel like you are doing too much, then take a break and evaluate your situation.

3. Prioritize your tasks. Determine what needs done right away and do those particular tasks in order of importance. That way, you won’t be constantly worrying about completing these vital projects and can relax (a little bit) after they are complete.

Read the rest »

Why You Can’t Shake Off That Last Argument

Remembering Robin Williams: His 10 Most Inspirational Quotes
Renowned for his otherworldly improvisational skills and Oscar-winning dramatic performances in films like Good Will Hunting, Robin Williams died yesterday at his home in Tiburon, Calif. from an apparent suicide, police said. He was 63.
While Williams’ passing may have come as a shock to fans, his publicist noted in a statement that “He has been battling severe depression of late.” Williams also notably struggled with drug and alcohol abuse throughout his career, having checked into rehab most recently earlier this year.
Even President Obama expressed his condolences. “He arrived in our lives as an alien — but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry,” Obama said in a statement. “He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most — from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets.”
In honor of Williams’ considerable impact on entertainment, his extensive charitable work and his incisive social commentary, here are 10 of his greatest quotes:
1. “You’re only given one little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.”
2. “What’s right is what’s left if you do everything else wrong.”
3. “No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change this world.” -Dead Poets Society
4. “Some are born great. Some achieve greatness. Some get it as a graduation gift.”
5. “[Mentor Jonathan Winters] taught me that the world is open for play, that everything and everybody is mockable in a wonderful way.”
6. “You have this idea that you’d better keep working otherwise people will forget. And that was dangerous. And then you realize, no, actually if you take a break people might be more interested in you.”
7. “I used to think the worst thing in life was to end up all alone. It’s not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people that make you feel all alone.” -World’s Greatest Dad
8. “If women ran the world we wouldn’t have wars, just intense negotiations every 28 days.”
9. “It’s a wonderful feeling when your father becomes not a god but a man to you — when he comes down from the mountain and you see he’s this man with weaknesses. And you love him as this whole being, not as a figurehead.”
10. “But only in their dreams can men be truly free. It was always thus and always thus will be.” -Dead Poets Society

Remembering Robin Williams: His 10 Most Inspirational Quotes

Renowned for his otherworldly improvisational skills and Oscar-winning dramatic performances in films like Good Will Hunting, Robin Williams died yesterday at his home in Tiburon, Calif. from an apparent suicide, police said. He was 63.

While Williams’ passing may have come as a shock to fans, his publicist noted in a statement that “He has been battling severe depression of late.” Williams also notably struggled with drug and alcohol abuse throughout his career, having checked into rehab most recently earlier this year.

Even President Obama expressed his condolences. “He arrived in our lives as an alien — but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry,” Obama said in a statement. “He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most — from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets.”

In honor of Williams’ considerable impact on entertainment, his extensive charitable work and his incisive social commentary, here are 10 of his greatest quotes:

1. “You’re only given one little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.”

2. “What’s right is what’s left if you do everything else wrong.”

3. “No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change this world.” -Dead Poets Society

4. “Some are born great. Some achieve greatness. Some get it as a graduation gift.”

5. “[Mentor Jonathan Winters] taught me that the world is open for play, that everything and everybody is mockable in a wonderful way.”

6. “You have this idea that you’d better keep working otherwise people will forget. And that was dangerous. And then you realize, no, actually if you take a break people might be more interested in you.”

7. “I used to think the worst thing in life was to end up all alone. It’s not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people that make you feel all alone.” -World’s Greatest Dad

8. “If women ran the world we wouldn’t have wars, just intense negotiations every 28 days.”

9. “It’s a wonderful feeling when your father becomes not a god but a man to you — when he comes down from the mountain and you see he’s this man with weaknesses. And you love him as this whole being, not as a figurehead.”

10. “But only in their dreams can men be truly free. It was always thus and always thus will be.” -Dead Poets Society

Know your market. 

Grumpy Cat and the Thriving Cat Meme Marketplace

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