Hari Krishnan savours 2nd win in a row, Aaron also wins

first_imgCoimbatore, June 26 (PTI) Hari Krishnan Rajagopalan of Team Honda Ten10 Racing team chalked up a fluent double in the Pro-Stock 165 class while Jagan Kumar (TVS Racing) dominated the premium Super Sport Indian category field as the curtain came down on the Rolon round of the MMSC FMSCI Indian National Motorcycle Racing Championship here today. Hari Krishnan, the 22-year old from Chennai, nursing a ?pumped? right arm that cramped his hand, fought and won a close battle with Vivek Pillai for a double following his win in the first race on Saturday. Also scoring a double was 13-year old Aaron Gunawardena from Sri Lanka who won both the races in the Suzuki Gixxer Cup (Novice) category. Aaron, who participates in the Suzuki Asia Challenge (Underbone class), rode well to beat much-older competitors to mark his debut in the Gixxer Cup. The day?s proceedings were highlighted by the Super Sport Indian race that saw Jagan off to flier from pole position and comfortably nursed his lead to the finish ahead of team-mate Harry Sylvester who benefitted when Saturday?s winner Deepak Ravikumar (Rajini Academy for Competitive Racing) crashed. In third spot was Sarath Kumar of Honda Ten10 Racing. “I had a good start and opened up a big lead. As others behind me were fighting for positions, I could increase the lead and then eased off over the last five laps,” said Jagan who had finished second behind Ravikumar in Saturday?s race. For Hari Krishnan, who recently bagged a podium spot in the Asia Road Racing Championship, it was a struggle in the Pro-Stock race that was run along with the Super Sport Indian. After exchanging leads with Prabhu Arunagiri (RACR), Hari Krishnan managed to get in front. Vivek Pillai too went past Prabhu in the last lap to bag the second spot. “Because of the pumped arm, my right hand tended to become numb and I could hardly feel the brake pedal, but I somehow managed to hold on and win,” said Hari Krishnan. Meanwhile, a couple of crashes late in the afternoon led to cancellation of the day?s last two races. Prativ Selvaraj, participating in the Suzuki Gixxer Cup Open, crashed at Turn-2 and was rushed to Ortho-One hospital in the trackside ambulance. He was subsequently discharged after precautionary x-ray and treatment. In the next race (Honda CBR 250 Open), Rajiv Sethu of Honda Ten10 Racing suffered a hip injury following a crash at Turn-1 and was also rushed to Ortho-One hospital in the second ambulance. The race was red-flagged after six laps at which point Sethu was running second behind Abhishek V (Rock Star Racing). With a minimum of two ambulances required to be present at the track as per safety norms, but only one available trackside, the officials decided to cancel the day?s remaining two races on grounds of safety. PTI AT ATadvertisementlast_img read more

4 Tips to Remove Uncertainty From Your Job Search

first_imgDealing with uncertainty during a job search is a feeling many experience.We’ve all been there. Waiting to hear back from a recruiter or sitting by the phone waiting for the results of an interview can be some of the most nerve-wracking moments of your job search, In fact, 92 percent of adults fear something about the job interview process. Whether it’s landing the interview or knowing exactly what to say during it, many job seekers feel uneasy when it comes to finding a job.What many job seekers don’t want to accept is the fact that we need to take some risks throughout our careers. These risks can be taking a job you wouldn’t have expected or even starting a freelance career. Whatever has you feeling uneasy during your job search, here are some thoughts to consider to help you feel more calm and less stressed about your job search:When you stress about tomorrow, you’re taking away from today’s opportunities.It’s normal to feel stressed about waiting for callbacks or emails from recruiters. However, you cannot allow this stress to consume your life. Sometimes, when we’re so worried about what will happen tomorrow, next week, or in the next five years, we forget about the events that are happening today. Don’t allow yourself to become consumed by the stress of your job search. To help you stay focused on the present, spend time networking, take a class, and attend workshops. If you can keep yourself busy when looking for jobs, new opportunities could enter into your life.During your job search, you need to allow yourself to open up. Today, you could receive an unexpected phone call about a job opening across the country — and they’re hiring immediately. If something like this happens, you have to able to take a step back and consider your situation. You never know when new opportunity will come to your life and even change your career path for the best. You have to be willing to consider your options and see where they take you.You can’t plan for everything.The further you are in your career, the more you’ll realize that you can’t always plan ahead. While it’s nice to have an exact plan for the next five years, you need to allow some room for change and opportunity. The key to coping with uncertainty is accepting the fact that there will always be uncertainty. No one, not even you, can predict where your career will take you in the next five years. While it’s good to have some goals created for your future, you also need to allow some wiggle room for those goals to change.Remember, you do have control of your career.Many job seekers see their job search as a one-way street when it comes to applying for positions and attending interviews. But a major part of your job search is knowing if you want the job or not. You may think the interviewer or employer has complete control of your career decisions, but they don’t. During your job search, you need to take control of your career in order to regain confidence as a job seeker. This will help you make better decisions and discover which path is the best for you.Although having patience during your job search can seem daunting, sometimes you have to be willing to face uncertainty. When it comes to landing a job (and even taking some risks to land that job), you have to be willing to deal with the unknown. Throughout your career there will be times when you feel confident and times where you question every decision you make. But when it comes down to it, you just have to have faith that you will succeed in reaching your career goals.How do you cope with uncertainty during your job search?last_img read more

8 Characteristics Great Managers Look for in College Grads

first_imgAre college students ready for the challenges of the modern workplace? Many employers say no.  A recent survey revealed that only about 50% of managers felt recent graduates were prepared for full-time work. By contrast, 87% of college grads felt they were ready to enter the workforce. These drastically different numbers show that there is a gulf between the expectations of employers and recent graduates. This discrepancy poses challenges for recent grads seeking jobs and for businesses that wish to hire young workers.No matter which group you fall into, knowing the characteristics that successful managers look for from recent college graduates is beneficial. If you are a hiring manager, keeping an eye on these characteristics can help you identify the cream of the crop. If you are fresh out of college and trying to land your first job, boning up on these hard and soft skills can give you an advantage.Here are eight characteristics that managers want to see from recent college graduates.1. Strong writing skillsWhen PayScale surveyed nearly 64,000 managers for its 2016 survey, 44% of them said recent college graduates lacked proficiency in writing. No other hard skill was mentioned more often. While programming and other tech-related skills are often listed as the most valuable skills a person can have, writing is viewed as a more universal skill. Between emails, proposals, reports, project documents, and memos, even people in non-writing roles need to be able to write. College grads should add a few more writing classes to their schedules if they want to prepare for full-time work. Many managers look at cover letters more to assess writing skills than to learn additional details about a candidate.2. Public speaking abilities Written communication skills may be what managers are missing the most in recent college graduates, but verbal communication skills remain important. Just like writing manifests itself in many different fields, public speaking is essential for presentations, meetings with clients and customers, and other professional tasks. These responsibilities are not exclusive to any one industry, making them an important part of every recent grad’s repertoire.The Guide to Getting Your First Job3. Team mentalityBack in school, teachers would occasionally pair students with people they didn’t like much, or at least didn’t ordinarily work with. The justification was, “Someday, you aren’t going to get to choose your co-workers.” Our teachers were right. You don’t get to choose who you work with, and you need to be ready to collaborate with anyone. Most professionals learn this lesson after a few years in the workforce. Managers hiring recent grads are looking for the interpersonal skills and good attitude that indicate a team player. While every company’s culture is different, most are grounded in team values. Recent graduates should expect reference checks and interview questions about teamwork.4. A high GPAThe further you get out of school, the less your college GPA matters. For recent graduates without a ton of work experience, though, the GPA may be a point of interest during the hiring process. According to USA Today College, 43% of companies have a formal GPA threshold for the people they hire. For most companies, the threshold is a 3.0 GPA. Occasionally, an employer might demand a 3.5. Either way, graduates should know that hiring managers are looking at their GPAs. Furthermore, many managers are using verification background checks to verify college degrees, attendance dates, and GPAs. 20 Internships You Should Apply to ASAP5. Relevant work experienceBusinesses committed to hiring recent college graduates aren’t expecting to see candidates with ten years of experience. It’s because of the relative lack of work experience that employers pay attention to things like GPA for younger candidates. With that said, no hiring manager is going to ignore work experience altogether. When it comes to screening recent grads, companies are looking for part-time jobs, summer gigs, and relevant internship experience. These resume entries show initiative, commitment, and an ability to hold down a job—all things every manager wants to see in any hire.6. Critical thinking and problem-solving skillsThe PayScale survey identified writing as the hard skill that most managers found lacking in recent college grads. For soft skills, critical thinking and problem solving were the problem areas. 60% of managers surveyed said their younger hires lacked these skills. They want to know the people they are hiring know how to identify problems and challenges and solve them. An interview question to gauge this skill area might be something along the lines of, “Tell me about a time you faced a major challenge and how you overcame it.” Answers that indicate innovation, proactivity, or the resilience to rise above failure and adversity are what managers want to hear. No new college grad should go into an interview without a possible answer ready.Why You Need To Include Soft Skills On Your Resume7. Attention to detailOften, hiring managers have the impression that younger, greener professionals don’t have great attention to detail. This snap judgment is typically made in response to resumes, cover letters, and other communications that managers share with candidates in the lead-up to or immediately following an interview. According to the PayScale survey, 56% of managers said recent grads were lacking attention to detail, probably thanks largely to typos, misspellings, missing attachments, or poor grammar. Some of these issues can be chalked up to writing skills. But new graduates also need to be conscious of the fact that every move they make is being recorded and judged. Submitting a resume or cover letter with one or two typos might seem like a small thing, but it can lead to a bad first impression.8. Leadership experience“Recent college graduate with extensive leadership skills” may seem like an oxymoron. Someone who doesn’t have a lot of work experience probably hasn’t been promoted to a managerial or executive role. Still, first-time job searchers can prove leadership skills in other ways. Club president or team captain roles might seem superfluous in the professional realm, but they can add another dimension to a sparse resume. It’s possible that hiring managers expect more from just-out-of-college applicants than they once did. It’s also possible that many graduates simply aren’t as prepared for jobs as they think they are. Either way, the eight characteristics listed above form a rubric for the ideal recent college grad applicant. Whether you are a hiring manager considering younger candidates or a recent graduate looking for your first job, use these characteristics as a roadmap to make your life easier.Michael Klazema has been developing products for criminal background check and improving online customer experiences in the background screening industry since 2009. He is the lead author and editor for Backgroundchecks.com. He lives in Dallas, TX with his family and enjoys the rich culinary histories of various old and new world countries. 4.0★ Inside Sales HVAC Lead Generator (Entry Level) Gold Medal Maywood, NJ 3.5★ Diesel Mechanic / Truck Technician – Entry Level Clarke Power Services, Inc. Georgetown, KY 23 hours ago 23h 3.4★ 2.9★ Entry-Level ABA Therapist Centria Autism Tustin, CA Entry Level Sales – Energy Consultant V3 Electric Rancho Cucamonga, CA 4.4★ Entry Level Sales & Customer Service Rep [NO COLD CALLS or D2D] Catalyst Leadership Group Hermitage, TN 3.3★ 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h Browse More Jobs 5.0★ Available Entry Level Jobs 4.8★ 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h 3.2★ Entry Level Behavior Technician Juvo Autism + Behavioral Health Services Dublin, CA Entry Level CDL-A Truck Driver – Earn Top Pay FAST! Western Express Ridgeland, MS Truck Driver | Change Your Career & Get Paid While You Get Your CDL | Entry Level / Paid Training Roehl Transport Tinley Park, IL 15 Interview Questions You Should Be Prepared to Answer This Month 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h ABA – Behavior Assistant/Therapist – Entry-Level Discover Hope Behavioral Solutions, Inc. San Jose, CA 23 hours ago 23h 23 hours ago 23h See more Entry Level jobs 23 hours ago 23h Behavior Therapist / ABA Interventionist. Entry-Level/Part Time/Childcare Autism Learning Partners El Paso, TX 3.6★last_img read more

​English FA are ‘oblivious’ to match fixing says suspended Burnley midfielder Barton

first_imgThe English Football Association is ‘oblivious’ of match-fixing problems within football, according to Joey Barton.The 34-year old received an 18-month ban after he was found to have made 1,260 bets on football over a period of 12 years.However, the former Manchester City and Newcastle midfielder believes the problem with gambling goes further than individual player bets, and instead, extends to the point where matches are being fixed. “Five or six times every season you hear on the grapevine, “This has happened, that has happened, there’s going to be a [fixed] game. In the English pyramid,” Barton told The Times.”You hear the results and you’re, like, “Yeah.” ‘It’s what happens if you allow people not getting paid and clubs going into administration. All of a sudden people get desperate. [Fixing] is an evil the FA are oblivious to.”We only know about the games that have been highlighted, where someone couldn’t keep their mouth shut, but how many more are there?””They didn’t know about me and I was betting in plain view for 12 years. “So, I’d have to ask are they equipped to know? And do they want to know?”last_img read more

Danny Bramall delighted to turn pro with Everton

first_imgDanny Bramall is delighted to have turned pro with Everton.Bramall, 18, put pen-to-paper on his first professional contract on Tuesday, signing a one-year deal.And the winger, a regular for Kevin Sheedy’s Under-18s last season, is now keen to force his way into David Unsworth’s thinking.“As soon as I signed for Everton four or five years ago this was what I was working for – a pro deal,” the delighted youngster told evertonfc.com. “Now I’ve got it and signed it, it’s just a dream come true.“Last season, I was just trying to impress people as much as I could and, thankfully, I did enough.“My aim now is to get more goals, more assists and hopefully some starts for the Under-23s.“I saw what the Under-23s did last season and I want to be a part of that, in the middle of it all, because it looked brilliant to win it and I’d want to do the same.“It is a good Club to be at if you want to move up to the first team one day because you see lads getting great opportunities and also the coaches and staff let you express yourself and be yourself when you’re out on the pitch.”last_img read more

West Brom management insist Jonny Evans not for sale

first_imgWest Brom management insist Jonny Evans is not for sale.The Express & Star says Albion are insisting Evans is not for sale amid reports Leicester City are readying a second bid to test their resolve.The club have already rejected a £10million bid from the Foxes, which was seen as a derisory offer in the corridors of Baggies headquarters.But Leicester, who signed Harry Maguire from Hull City for £17m towards the end of last week, still want a second centre-half to replace their ageing back line.The Foxes remain keen on Evans, but sources at Albion say they would only entertain bids north of £25m, and only once another defender was bought.last_img

The Long Snail

first_imgAt Network for Good, the charitable giving portal where I work, we recently undertook a study of $100 million in online giving to 23,000 charities. We found all kinds of cool things available here, but one of the most intriguing was that we were a long tail. As we said in our research:The “long tail” phenomenon – a term devised by Wired Editor Chris Anderson to describe how the Internet creates and serves long-tailed distribution markets – is evident at Network for Good when numbers of donations are charted by organization. At Network for Good, 50% the donations go to 1% of charities (excluding crisis giving). The rest is spread out along the long tail. Just as Amazon and Google have enabled consumers to access products and information that meets their particular needs and interests by providing one-stop access to many, diverse choices, Network for Good has enabled donors to contribute to many, diverse nonprofits by putting a fragmented nonprofit “market” in one place. In other words, there are supporters for every cause, no matter how small. That’s great for Network for Good, but if you’re on the long tail, how else can you reach people than just waiting for them to find you on Network for Good? Here’s some good advice. In addition, try going to Meetup and type in your zip and focus. You’ll find people meeting in your area to talk about your issue. They are already hanging out on the long tail of Meetup, waiting to meet your organization, which also sits on the long tail.Too bad we’re SO SLOW to do this in our sector (hence the “long snail,” the title of Network for Good CEO Bill Strathmann’s recent talk on the topic). Hurry and work your tail right now. It’s never been easier to find the people out there in the fragmented but limitless online “marketplace.”last_img read more

Technology isn’t about wires, it’s about bonds

first_imgThere is a curious paradox: the more our lifestyle creates separateness, the more we crave connection. We’re always talking about how technology sets us apart from the world around us – iTunes in our ears, Blackberry (Crackberry) in our hand. But at the same time, we universally tend to use technology to seek connections – in our online communities, our Twittering, our emailing, our Facebooking – it’s all about looking for bonds.Don’t forget that. No matter what you do, what you say, or how you use technology it’s not about the tool or the wires or the bells and whistles. It’s about the bonds.Don’t ask, should we blog? Ask, is blogging a good way to connect with our audience? Don’t ask, do we need a website redesign? Ask, can people find what they need when they come to us? Do they feel closer to us after they’ve come to our site? My esteemed colleague Jocelyn Harmon of NPower here in DC recently did a presentation on marketing and communications in the connected age. You can check it out here. She reminds us of two things to remember online:1. Be real. Speak the truth, in your own voice.2. Flip the funnel. (Katya’s note: That’s Seth Godin’s great term for surrendering your lonely megaphone and antiquated sale funnel and letting a thousand messengers bloom, in their own voices, to their own circles of influence)In other words, be an authentic messenger and don’t be the only messenger. Be an organization that connects to people on a very human level. And make it possible for people who love your organization to connect to the people they love to share your story. This is what it’s all about.While online tools seem oh-so-new, what makes them work could not be more ancient or old-school. What’s truly innovative is using the Internet to more quickly and expansively fulfill our unending human need for connection. Paraphrasing Pasternak, what’s powerful is what’s shared.last_img read more

10 Common Mistakes in Selecting Donor Databases (And How to Avoid Them)

first_imgRobert Weiner, President of Robert L. Weiner Consulting, is an independent technology consultant based in San Francisco. He specializes in helping nonprofits make informed, strategic decisions about the selection, use, and management of information technology. He has consulted for a wide variety of organizations including the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Earthjustice, EMILY’s List, the California Hospice Foundation, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the Trust for Public Land, UC Berkeley, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Pomona College, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, Reed College, the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, the American Red Cross of the Bay Area, and the San Francisco Ballet. Contact him at robert@rlweiner.com This article was adapted from a workshop created with Dawn Trygstad Rubin for CompassPoint’s Silicon Valley Conference on Nonprofits and Technology. Many thanks to Tim Mills-Groninger and Dawn Trygstad Rubin for their advice. Picture, if you will, two nonprofits. The first has a donor database that is full of bad data. Donors are getting the wrong receipts or no receipts at all. The organization cannot use the database to plan their fundraising strategies or track their effectiveness. The few reports they can get are useless. Staff members complain that no one trained them, and they get no technical support. For obvious reasons, they hate the system. The second organization loves its database. Their data is clean, their donors get timely, accurate mailings, the organization has a good handle on its fundraising activities, and staff get the reports they want. New personnel are trained on the database before they ever log in, and someone on staff helps them resolve any problems and questions that come up.Both nonprofits are using the same software package.How can this be? Perhaps the first organization has outgrown its old system. But it is quite likely that the organization never had the right software to begin with, and then proceeded to use it incorrectly. They made a series of bad decisions and have been struggling with them ever since.How do you avoid this fate? Selecting and managing a donor database is never easy, but if you avoid the mistakes on this list, you can start out on the right foot.1. Letting Techies Make the DecisionIn the early days of computing, programmers created all donor databases. Their role was to turn fundraising concepts into software programs. But since most fundraisers did not (and still do not) want to be involved in the detailed decisions and testing required to design a database, programmers usually drove the project.Although the market for donor databases has changed significantly over the past three decades, techies still make many of the purchasing decisions. However, few techies have experience with fundraising. This makes it critical to get input from the people who will actually use the database. You don’t need to include every staff member, but you should get input from all levels of the organization (management, departments, end users), fundraisers from all areas of Development (direct mail, grants, major gifts, corporate relations, and planned giving-if you have all of these), and other staff who may be impacted by a new system (administrative and data entry, those who create and run reports, other departments that provide input or use fundraising data). The techies should be there to advise on whether a system will fit into your organization’s technology strategy and be supportable in the long term, but they should not make the final decision.2. Wishful BudgetingBefore you go shopping for a database, you need to know what you can spend. And before you sign a contract, you need to make sure you can afford to pay the bill, now and in the future. Over a five-year period, software could be as little as a one-fifth of your total cost. You might need new computers and printers, network upgrades, help in moving your data to the new system, extra end-user training, help developing new processes and policies, and perhaps even new staff to manage the system. This effect is magnified as the software price rises-more complex software requires more staff training, stronger policies, and better business processes. You also need to plan for the annual software maintenance fee, which is usually about twenty-five percent of the software’s retail price. The bottom line: if you cannot afford to train your staff and pay the annual maintenance fee, do not buy the software.3. Prioritizing Price above Everything ElseBuy the product that meets your top needs, fits your resources, and offers the best price. Think in terms of Return on Investment. Software that allows you to have better control over your fundraising programs, manage your solicitations, track your results, and analyze your effectiveness is a good investment that will pay dividends for many years.Accept a donation (whether of software or services) only if it fits your selection criteria. Feel free to accept input from board members, donors, volunteers, or the boss, but in the end, make an educated, strategic decision.4. Randomly Looking at DemosYogi Berra is supposed to have said, “You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you’re going, because you might not get there.” And if you do not know what you want from your donor database, you might get to the wrong “there.” Randomly looking at software demonstrations is not likely to produce a good result.Your first step should be to convene a selection team that will help you make the decision. Make sure they understand their role-is it their decision, or are they advising management? Will the decisions be made based on majority-rule or consensus?The team should start by understanding the current system (what works? what doesn’t? what codes and reports do you actually use?).  Next, develop a list of needs. These can be general, like “ad-hoc report writer,” or specific, like the ability to track a 15-character appeal code or analyze membership upgrades, downgrades, and renewals. Don’t forget to consider future needs, especially if major organizational changes are anticipated. Then the team should identify the mandatory items on the list. “Mandatory” means that if the system cannot provide that one single feature you will have to reject the database, no matter what else it can do. Everything that is not mandatory goes on the “wish list,” which should be ranked roughly in priority order (e.g. A, B, C). Consider what worked at your last job only if the needs, budgets, and staffing are similar.Next, identify a pool of possible vendors. Links to several vendor listings are posted at http://www.rlweiner.com/resources.html#donors. In addition, you can ask for suggestions from your professional network, or on email forums for nonprofit professionals. Be sure to get references from comparable organizations (e.g., type of nonprofit, number of staff, budget size, fundraising volume, number of locations, etc.). There is no point in finding out which database the Red Cross headquarters uses if your organization’s annual budget is $250,000.You might wish, or be required, to use a Request for Proposals (RFP). If you do, be sure that the questions you ask can be answered unambiguously, and will help you narrow the vendor pool. Think ahead to how you will use and rate the responses. Keep in mind that not all vendors will not respond to an RFP, particularly a lengthy one.When you look at software demos, make sure the vendors address your mandatory and top priority requirements. You can help ensure this by providing a list of your requirements, or a script that the vendors must follow. Make sure each vendor follows the same process: If you use a script for the demos, every vendor will need to follow the same script. If one vendor gets four hours for a demo, the rest should as well. Give each vendor the same information about your needs. If you answer a substantive question for one vendor, give the same information to the others. Follow up the information that vendors provide by checking references carefully and spending time testing a demo version of the software.5. Falling in Love with Cool FeaturesYour donor database has to meet your needs and provide room for growth. But the vendor is also a critical factor. The right vendor will keep up with changing technologies, provide good training and support, and supply usable documentation. Remember, if the vendor disappears you will have to do this all over again. Reference checks will help you check the vendor’s track record. If the company’s stock is publicly traded, you can find detailed financial information. You can also get some financial information from Dun and Bradstreet. If the company seems risky, you might want to visit their office and see how they run their operation.6. Falling in Love with the SalespersonYou are not buying the sales person.  In fact, in most cases you will never hear from the salesperson after you sign the contract, so don’t worry about hurting her feelings. Try to look past who has the best personality or the nicest suit and judge the software on its own merits.7. Buying More Than You NeedDon’t buy a Ferrari if you only need (or can afford, or can maintain) a Honda Civic. It’s great to be able to track every detail about every prospect and donor, but will your staff have time to use those features? Plan for the future, but make sure you can use it now. With some systems, you may be able to start small and buy additional modules as needed (although you will have to be prepared to pay for additional training and annual support along with the new modules). One often-overlooked option is improving what you have-it isn’t reasonable to compare a five-year-old version of your current software to the most recent versions of other software.8. Confusing Highly Functional Software with Highly Trained StaffComplex software requires your staff to have more computer skills, not less. Under-trained staff, poor communication, dysfunctional business processes, and poor management will not be solved by new software. Usually, the problems will get worse.It’s also important to look at your staffing and procedures as part of the project. Beware of management and “people” problems masquerading as technology problems. For instance, if you are having problems getting accurate reports, are the problems being caused by the database software, sloppy data entry, lack of communication between fundraisers and techies, poor training, or bad programming logic in the reports? If it takes two weeks to produce a receipt, does the problem lie with the database or with your business practices?9. Hoping That the Database Will Install ItselfAlthough it accounts for eight of the ten topics in this article, buying software is usually the easiest part of the project. Next comes the hard part: the conversion project. Conversions usually have many components: mapping the fields, codes and reports in the old database to the new one; cleaning up your current data (manually or through programs); figuring out what to do with data that does not fit easily into the new database; defining new codes and reports; testing the converted data; setting up business rules (how various tasks will be accomplished); defining system security (who can log in and what can they view, add, change or delete); setting up system parameters (code types and values, user-defined fields); building interfaces to other systems; defining and documenting your procedures; creating a data entry style guide; and writing training materials.Someone is going to need to oversee that work. This project manager will need to understand your fundraising programs and learn how the software works. She probably has a full time job that may be derailed by this project, and her manager will need to understand this before the project starts. The project manager is also likely to need help from your fundraisers and administrative staff, each of whom have their own jobs to do. Some organizations get through conversions by reassigning staff or hiring temporary staff to support the staff working on the project. Complex software must also be properly configured, which may require help from the vendor or a consultant.If you have a hard deadline (like the end of the fiscal year), you need to make sure everyone knows this. You also need to consider the implications of missing it and have contingency plans in place.Finally, you should try to build some flexibility into your budget, in case unexpected costs arise. They say that time is money, but the reverse is also true. More money can pay for temporary staff, overtime, and more help from the vendor or consultants.10. Leaving the Database to Fend for ItselfAt long last, your new system is live, your data is clean, all processes and data entry standards are documented, you have a training manual, and your staff are fully trained. (Well, you can dream.) The second law of thermodynamics says, more or less, that if you do not continue to put energy into maintaining the system it will degrade. How can you keep entropy at bay?First, someone should “own” the database and be responsible for quality control. This role is sometimes called the “data manager” (as opposed to a technical “database administrator.”) This person must make sure that your data entry procedures are documented and followed, and run periodic audit reports to identify problems.Someone will also need to make sure that staff are trained on new features and procedures, and that new staff are trained before they start entering data.New systems often change the way work gets done. You will need to make sure that job duties and descriptions still match reality. You might also need to spend time thinking through how data and paperwork move through your organization.Finally, you will need to budget for ongoing hardware and software upgrades, annual software maintenance fees, and ongoing training from the vendor-including attendance at annual Users Group conferences.In ConclusionHow do you end up like the contented nonprofit mentioned above, with clean data, solid reports, and happy staff? The software tool itself is only half the story-the other half lies in understanding what you need, and then following through. Sophisticated fundraising combines a realistic development plan with appropriate staffing and the financial and technical resources needed to achieve the plan. With a solid selection process, proper attention during the conversion, and good staff training and support, you can choose software that supports your organization’s long-term goals.last_img read more

Why Aren’t There More Maternal Deaths? A Decomposition Analysis

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Additionally, they ran a similar analysis for the maternal death rate, which is the number of deaths per 1,000 women aged 15-49 per year. Ross and Blanc conclude:The average woman’s annual risk of a maternal death, the maternal death rate, fell by over half in the 18-year period examined here. Without the past decline in fertility of nearly one-third, and the decline in the MMR of over a third, the numbers of maternal deaths would have been about 44% higher, with 3.6 million more deaths between 1990 and 2008.The decline in annual deaths from 541,000 in 1990–355,000 in 2008 has been achieved despite the growth in numbers of women. The particular contribution of the fertility decline has been to keep the absolute number of births constant; that has been overlooked in the literature of the field, but the effect is of the same magnitude as that of the decline in the MMR. There has also been an interaction between the two effects, first by averting many births on which the MMR would otherwise have acted, and second because greater contraceptive use has also helped lower the average MMR by improving the mix of births according to their risk profiles, shifting births away from high parities and older ages of mothers.Share this: Posted on April 7, 2011November 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)John A. Ross of the Futures Group and MHTF Director Ann K. Blanc recently published a decomposition analysis of maternal deaths based on data published last year by the UN and Hogan et al. The paper notes that despite an increase in female populations of 42% during the period between 1990 and 2008, the number of maternal deaths actually declined. Ross and Blanc analyze the three components (women of reproductive age; general fertility rate; and maternal mortality ratio) that are used to calculate the number of maternal deaths in order to help explain the decline:For the developing world as a whole, and for the two major regions that account for most deaths, we follow the 1990–2008 trends to obtain the relative change in each of the three determinants. The purpose is to quantify the role of the three components in determining the number of deaths. Since the number of maternal deaths is simply the product of the number of women, the GFR, and the MMR, the effect of each can be obtained by holding the 1990 value constant to 2008 and noting the difference from the actual trend. That, together with the ratios of change, provides a picture of the role of each of the three determinants.last_img read more

Making Childbirth Safer for Pastoralist Mothers in the Afar Region of Ethiopia

first_imgPosted on January 16, 2013June 12, 2017By: Hannah Ford, Communications Coordinator, The Road Less TravelledClick 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)This blog post is cross-posted from The Road Less Travelled.In the Afar region of Ethiopia, 93 percent of mothers deliver their babies at home with the assistance of traditional birthing attendants (TBAs). Safe motherhood is fundamental to overall community development, and the Afar Pastoralist Development Association (APDA) is addressing the needs of the community through a holistic approach.This includes a focus on strategies to increase access to water, since females traditionally collect water; improve the health of livestock, so that milk is readily available; improve household economies through income generation activities; and enhance access to education and literacy.APDA’s programs aim to lessen the workload of females in daily household chores, stop harmful traditional practices that have a negative effect on women’s health and well-being, and to facilitate Afar women to be implementers of development change within their society.The struggle for safe motherhood ideally takes place within the pastoralist home, led by the community and managed by the local government, including the traditional leadership.Having selected the most active and popular TBAs in the community, APDA has trained 1,036 TBAs on basic hygiene, sanitation, clean delivery, antenatal care, and recognition of risk pregnancies. Trained TBAs are equipped with clean birthing kits for each delivery. This has resulted in the establishment of clean birthing processes and a referral mechanism to health institutions for ‘risk’ pregnancies.Furthermore, APDA works with TBAs to identify the six birthing traditions used by TBAs, which are dangerous to women during delivery. By highlighting the associated risks and harm caused by these traditions, the trained TBAs have agreed to stop using these harmful practices.However, the TBAs do not work in isolation. APDA’s strategy for safe motherhood involves the formation of community health teams, made up of health workers, women extension workers, and trained TBAs. As members of the community, this team performs home antenatal checks, delivery, and postnatal care.Another core element of the strategy which is now being developed is APDA’s emergency referral system. This system links the Barbara May Maternity Hospital in Mille with waiting centres for expectant mothers living in remote districts within a 250 kilometre radius.The waiting centres consist of five to six traditional Afar houses within the compound of a health centre, where mothers considered ‘at risk’ or simply wanting a safe birth can stay during the last month or weeks of their pregnancy with the ongoing support of a midwife.The centres utilise government-employed midwives, who should be capable of diagnosing whether referral to the hospital for surgical intervention is required. APDA intends to support these midwives by providing additional training at the hospital, and adequate equipment to handle assisted deliveries. They are also required to maintain communication networks with the hospital and an obstetrician.Education and training is an important objective of APDA and the Barbara May Maternity Hospital, with the ultimate goal being that the hospital is entirely locally-managed – no longer requiring voluntary doctors or midwives as it has in the initial set-up phase. The centre also aims to focus on deliberately building community awareness and fostering an understanding of safe motherhood practices within the Afar pastoralist communities.Founder and Project Coordinator, Valerie Browning, will be sharing APDA’s strategy for safe motherhood at the Global Maternal Health Conference this Wednesday 16 January. She will be exploring ways to eliminate barriers to skilled birth attendance with her presentation, “Trained Traditional Birth Attendants: Today’s Missed Opportunity.” Please visit www.gmhc2013.com to view Valerie Browning’s presentation! For all the latest updates from the conference, follow the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #GMHC2013 or tune in to the live-stream here.To follow stories from The Road Less Travelled, a partnership MCH project that works with nomadic pastoralist communities in Ethiopia and Kenya, please visit their blog: http://aroadlesstravelled.net/blog/Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

Hiding in Plain Sight: The Importance of Respectful Maternity Care

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Share this: Posted on April 3, 2013March 13, 2017By: Kathleen McDonald, Senior Program Manager, Maternal Health Task Force, Women and Health InitiativeClick 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)The final plenary of the Global Maternal Health Conference 2013 (GMHC2013) in Arusha, Tanzania struck a nerve. The expert panel presented evidence of disrespect and abuse in maternity wards from all over the world. The audience was captivated and moved but not shocked. From Rwanda to the Netherlands, everyone had a story.Many had witnessed signs of undignified maternity care, yet it had not been named. It had been pushed aside as a cultural norm, or considered as an outcome of a constrained health system. Disrespect and abuse is practiced when laboring mothers are admonished or beaten in a moment of acute vulnerability for having too many children, for having children too soon, for having HIV, or for simply crying out in pain. It manifests itself structurally when an overburdened midwife tries desperately to accommodate an overflowing delivery room, when a mother is abandoned by skilled personnel to deliver on a bare labor ward floor, and when she is handcuffed to a bed when she cannot afford to pay hospital fees.Disrespect and abuse during childbirth is not a new phenomenon. Evidence of poor patient-provider interactions have been documented for decades in North America, Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Latin America. Maltreatment discourages women from delivering in health institutions, where life-saving treatment for complications in pregnancy and childbirth is available. Often referred to as the ‘moment of truth,’ the quality of the interaction between the healthcare provider and the patient is closely linked with women’s utilization of skilled birth attendance and, ultimately, maternal and newborn health outcomes. However, due to the already overstretched global health agenda, it is easy to overlook the importance of this critical relationship in maternal health programs and policies.The GMHC2013 afforded an opportunity for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers not only to share evidence, interventions, and advocacy for respectful maternity care, but also to challenge all those present to acknowledge this global problem that is hiding in plain sight. If advocates champion that maternal health is women’s health and share the imperative that women’s rights are human rights, then it is vital to support systems, infrastructure, and policies that ensure women’s rights extend to the delivery room.Over the next few weeks, the MHTF will host a series of guest blogs on respectful maternity care that will continue where we left off in Arusha. Posts will explore questions such as: What are programs and policies that are advocating for women’s dignity during childbirth?  Should respectful maternity care be considered a component of quality care?  What are the economic and human rights implications? How can communities become involved? How is disrespect and abuse present in rural and urban settings? In the private and public sectors?  In rich countries and poor countries?We invite you to share your story. Please submit your blog post to Sarah Blake sblake@maternalhealthtaskforce.orglast_img read more

MHTF’s Work in Respectful Maternity Care Featured in Cape Town Symposium on Health Systems Research

first_imgPosted on September 24, 2014November 2, 2016By: Katie Millar, Technical Writer, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick 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 week the Maternal Health Task Force (MHTF), along with other global experts, will gather in Cape Town at the Third Global Symposium on Health Systems Research. At the symposium, we, along with the USAID|Translating Research into Action (TRAction) Project, aim to strengthen the messages of maternal health, universal health coverage (UHC), and health systems presented at the symposium.The MHTF is participating in a number of events, which are part of a large focus on respectful maternity care (RMC) and woman-centered care. To garner attention for woman-centered care as a driver for UHC, we invite you to attend our sessions.“Woman-centered Care as the Engine for Universal Health Coverage: Creating a Health Systems Research Framework” on September 30th, from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Register here.“Addressing Disrespect and Abuse During Childbirth: An Agenda for Women-Centered Care in the Context of Universal Health Coverage” on October 3rd, from 2:30 p.m. to 4 pm.Also, in order to increase awareness and support for RMC and woman-centered care, we invite you to contribute a post to a blog series, the details of which can be found below.The schedule for all symposium RMC events can be found here.Why are we passionate about RMC and woman-centered care? Despite improvements, global indicators of women’s health, including maternal mortality and morbidity and family planning coverage, still remain unacceptably poor. These indicators reflect health systems that fail women. An equitable, respectful and gender-sensitive approach to health systems research is crucial to expand coverage and effectively deliver quality services for all.The purpose of the session, “Woman-centered Care as the Engine for Universal Health Coverage: Creating a Health Systems Research Framework,” and MHTF’s involvement at the symposium, is to build consensus on the necessity of a woman-centered care approach to strengthen health systems and achieve UHC. Specifically, the session will develop a strategy to integrate measurement experiences related to maternal mortality surveillance, prevalence of disrespect and abuse during childbirth, promotion of reproductive rights (particularly surrounding HIV/AIDS and family planning), and policy advocacy for women’s health under the umbrella of woman-centered care. In addition, we’ll bridge the gap caused by many distinct, high-level planning and strategy meetings occurring without much overlap between participants or sharing of strategies and outcomes.The RMC events hosted by the MHTF, TRAction, and other colleagues, along with the blog series, will achieve proposed objectives for woman-centered care and health systems by answering the following questions:What would a woman-centered care health systems research framework look like?What would targets and priorities be?Whose support is needed?What knowledge gaps must be filled to get there? (Measurement strategies, policy advocacy targets, dissemination strategies)How can strengths and efforts be combined to advance a woman-centered care agenda as imperative to UHC?How does woman-centered care tie these discussions of health systems research and UHC together?We hope to see you in Cape Town and as a contributor to the blog series to discuss the important topic of woman-centered care as a driver for UHC. If you are joining us in Cape Town next week, make sure you register for this satellite session by tomorrow, Thursday, September 25th!To contribute to the blog series, please contact Katie Millar,kmillar@hsph.harvard.edu, and submit a post at your soonest convenience between September 24th and October 8th. The post can answers the questions above or provide a commentary on your experience with this topic. If your schedule does not permit drafting a blog post, someone from our communications team can quickly interview you during or after the symposium to gather your thoughts on woman-centered care. Guidelines for a blog post can be found below.Also, make sure to follow us on twitter @MHTF and use and follow #EndDisrespect to join the conversation on RMC and disrespect and abuse. We look forward to furthering gender-sensitive approaches for woman-centered health systems with you.General guidelines for guest blog posts:Please include the author name, title, and photo (optional)Goal: Guest posts should raise questions, discuss lessons learned, analyze programs, describe research, offer recommendations, share resources, or offer critical insight.Audience: The audience for this series is health and development professionals working in maternal and newborn health around the world, primarily in resource-constrained settingsTone: Conversational. Doesn’t need to meet professional publication standardsFeel free to choose your own style or approach. Q/A as well as lists (eg. top ten lessons) can often be effective ways of organizing blog posts.Length: 400-600 wordsNo institutional promotion, pleasePlease include links to sources such as websites and/or publicationsMay also include photos andvideos; please include a caption and a credit for the photoShare this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

World Maternal Mental Health Day: Perinatal Mental Health Issues Affect Mothers, Fathers and Families

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on May 2, 2018May 3, 2018By: Rhiannon George-Carey, Visiting Fellow, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick 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)The term perinatal mental health is generally used to refer to the mental health of women during pregnancy and in the postpartum period (up to 12 months following childbirth). The burden of perinatal mental health is being increasingly recognized, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The prevalence of maternal perinatal depression is estimated to be 7-15% in high-income countries (HICs) and 19-25% in LMICs. Despite this, women are often under-diagnosed and under-treated. Risk factors for perinatal depression include unintended pregnancy, lack of social support, exposure to physical or sexual violence and poverty—factors that disproportionately affect women in the developing world.Mental health issues faced by fathers around the time of childbirth are a less recognized risk factor for maternal perinatal mental ill health. The estimated prevalence of paternal postpartum depression (PPD) ranges from 1 to 25%. This wide range may be attributed to inconsistent measurement and diagnosis as well as social and cultural factors. Men are less likely than women to seek help for their mental health, as this does not conform to society’s masculine gender norms of self-reliance, emotional silence and inability to display weakness of any kind.There is a dearth of literature on paternal perinatal mental health, but studies suggest that it can have a large impact on the health and wellbeing of mothers and offspring as well as on fathers themselves. There is a positive correlation between maternal and paternal PPD—maternal PPD is a risk factor for paternal PPD and vice-versa. In view of this, it is perhaps unsurprising that both partners are affected in up to 50% of cases. One study found that male partners of women with postpartum depression expressed feelings related to fear, confusion, frustration, anger, helplessness, uncertainty about the future, disrupted family and financial concerns. In the best of circumstances, mothers usually rely on their partners for emotional support following childbirth. If a mother is suffering from PPD, the need for emotional support increases, and if the partner is also facing depression, their support mechanism may be compromised. In cases where the mother is mentally well but the father is experiencing PPD, the mother’s vulnerability to mental ill-health may be increased.Parental PPD has been shown to promote marital conflict. Men with depression or anxiety are more likely to be violent towards their partners and are more likely to engage in alcohol and/or drug abuse, which may further perpetuate this cycle. Marital dissatisfaction may not resolve even if mental health improves over time. This has important implications for the general wellbeing of the couple and on the environment in which their offspring develop.The effects of poor maternal mental health on neonatal and child outcomes are well-documented. These include lower birth weights, increased neonatal intensive care unit admission, earlier cessation of breastfeeding, diminished completion of vaccination program, growth problems and long-term emotional and behavioral effects. Although not as well investigated, studies suggest that poor paternal mental health also influences their offspring’s health outcomes. Research shows increased emotional and behavioral problems in children, such as conduct problems or hyperactivity, and disturbed development of a secure father-child attachment. It is important to consider that in a large number of cases, both parents are experiencing poor mental health and thus the impact on their offspring may be intensified.Overall, several things are clear:Perinatal mental health issues can lead to negative consequences for mothers, fathers and offspringLiterature on the subject of paternal perinatal mental health is limited and there is inconsistency in methods between existing prevalence studiesFurther research is needed, particularly in LMICs where the burden of paternal perinatal mental health is likely larger when considering the risk factors for perinatal depression described aboveGender bias related to mental health-seeking behaviour needs to be addressed to help break down barriers for men suffering from poor mental health—Join the conversation on perinatal mental health using #MaternalMHMattersLearn more about perinatal mental health>>Read about family inclusive maternal health care—Photo Credit: Jonathan Torgovnik /Getty Images ReportageShare this:last_img read more

What’s stopping you?

first_imgNETWORK/SPEAK – Don’t just attend networking and professional associations meetings and events – serve on boards or committees and speak at chapter meetings or conferences. This is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send your blog post to us here.“But really – what’s stopping you from starting your own business?”That was the question posed on the anonymous online forum Fishbowl. Two days and 37 replies later, a litany of the usual suspects had been posted, including 10 common ones – some rather colorfully stated: TEACH/MENTOR – Look for opportunities to teach or mentor others in your area of expertise, either in the classroom or online. See “Network/Speak” above. Risk vs. ROI. DEVELOP A PRODUCT – You might want to develop something you wish you had, such as a directory, how-to guide, or an inspirational story/message. Give it away or sell it to drive traffic to your website. You do have a website, right?center_img Lack of a good idea.Not having an idea deemed “sexy” enough.No skills to implement the idea.No balls.Paying student loans.Not enough startup capital.Competing goals like grad school – and marriage.That old devil: Health insurance.And my favorite? Plain ol’ Laziness.I smiled to myself.Earlier this year, I took a deep breath and plunged back – after two previous fails – into independent consulting. A colleague referred me to a well-established independent HR Compensation consultant, Mae Lon Ding, owner of Personnel Systems Associates. She has been in business for over 30 years, with many name brand clients, and was two-time President of the Association of Professional Consultants.Filled with excitement about my new venture, I set up a networking call with her.Casually, Mae Lon burst my bubble with the sobering news that the type of entrepreneurs who make it are not “overnight” successes. “Expect to work full-time your first year and make half your salary; in Year 2, make three-quarters of your salary; in Year 3, break even; but,” she advised me, “if you make it to Year 4, you’ll never go back to working for someone else.”She also pointed out, “only 50% of success is your technical skill – the other 50% is your ability to market and sell yourself and your products or services.”While this advice didn’t exactly come as a surprise, she emphasized that the first year is an ideal time to establish credibility through thought leadership – while perhaps producing a small amount of income – by focusing on actionable marketing activities such as the following: WRITE – Post articles, whitepapers, infographics or guest blog posts that showcase your knowledge and experience, such as expert tips, industry trends or case studies of successful client projects. Wrapping the call, I sat down to ponder Mae Lon’s great – and hard won – advice. I realized that if I am going to avoid another fail, I’ve got to bear in mind these three critical factors:You really want to go independentYou are mentally prepared to face rejectionYou make financial preparations to survive the first few yearsIf you were not deterred by this advice, but instead felt energized – as I was – then going independent may be right for you. We’ll see how my third pass at the independent life goes. Feel free to drop me a line with your favorite tips and you just might be featured in a future blog post!Jessica Williams is an independent consultant who excels at leading large scale change journeys at diverse, global organizations. Her writing explores trends in career, change and talent management.last_img read more

What if the thing you are most afraid of doing is the thing you are supposed to do?

first_imgI grew up watching Star Wars, and as much as I wanted to gravitate towards Princes Leia like a lot of my friends, Yoda was my guy.From his distinctive voice and interesting phenotype, I couldn’t wait for him to utter his words of wisdom. And although I have several megabytes of real people who I admire and look up to, it was Yoda’s advice to “train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose” that stuck with me during my adolescent years. Little did I know that an animated Sensei would be the driving force for a life-altering decision as an adult.At the beginning of 2017, a friend pitched the idea of me creating a new platform. The concept was interesting: I would invite diverse guests into an independent radio studio that he owned. We would have conversations about writing, literature, culture, and history. As a loyal fan of NPR, I immediately fell in love with the concept. A “yes” was about to roll off of my tongue until he said “and we will videotape each episode and create a YouTube channel for you.”That “yes” quickly became a “no.” For every logical reason why I should have done it, I had an equally logical rebuttal. The thought of a camera capturing and archiving everything was a dealbreaker. It is one thing to be a guest on someone else’s platform, but to have your own? Nah. I passed.A chance rerun of Star Wars forced me to circle back to my favorite Yoda quote—why was I so dismissive of having a YouTube platform? To be honest, I was afraid of the show not being successful; I was afraid of rejection, especially the comments; and I was afraid that the concept of a platform anchored in discourse about writing would not be palpable for a general audience. So, I sat with that “no” for almost 8 months.I wish that I could tell you that I had an epiphany and woke up one day and said, “Let’s do this.” But that didn’t happen. Instead, I started paying more attention to YouTube and YouTube influencers. In many ways what they were doing in front of the camera was no different than what I was doing behind a keyboard—using my words and ideas to empower, educate, and edify others. So, with great trepidation, I reached out to my friend to see if we could still pilot the show.Thankfully, the invitation was still there and he, with his background in radio and media, agreed to serve as the Executive Producer. He recruited a dynamic videographer and graphic designer. I brought on a talented young high school student, who aspires to be a writer, as my intern. This became the core team.During our conceptual builds, we wanted to be clear about our purpose. We envisioned our targeted audience. We explored possible funding streams and we mapped out a plan and process to tape, edit, and upload the videos. Before launching, we created a list of episode themes and possible guests who were unconventional, thought-provoking, and just plain interesting people.From this nucleus, “The Write On Show with Dr. Tyra Seldon” was born.And here’s where the real magic began.Our first guest had to reschedule after we had heavily promoted his appearance. Our second guests had a scheduling conflict so they were several hours late for their taping. My EP and I had creative differences that almost dismantled our team. The show didn’t get sponsorship, so everyone volunteered hundreds of hours towards content creation, production, and distribution. And our viewership is still relatively low.Sounds like a failure, right? Not at all. The beauty of starting something new is that you can carve out excellent plans, but there is no real guarantee once you launch. Just like when you began your freelancing career, you created it with the best of intentions and a real belief that you would be successful—one client at a time. It’s with that same tenacity that I am entering into this new chapter of my life—one episode at a time.For everything that is not happening, there are many things that are. I am loving the show and it’s genuinely fun. I have met some awesome people and the feedback has been amazing! We have received LinkedIn messages thanking my team for the platform. People have even asked me if they could fly in to be interviewed. The biggest surprise was when some producers in LA told me that I had Oprah-like interviewing skills and they could see the show gaining national traction.Yet, none of this would have happened had I stood firmly with my “no.”By not allowing my fears to overwhelm me, I have created a platform that can contribute to thoughtful conversations, especially at a time when ideological silos have become the norm. Obviously, I don’t know what the future holds for my YouTube channel, but I do hope that my story will inspire you to let go of something that you “fear to lose.”Write on.last_img read more

Act like a millionaire to achieve financial security

first_imgThis is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send your blog post to us here.What does it take to build up a million-dollar nest egg? What about just an emergency fund? The answers to these questions might actually be the same.In the 1980s and 90s, two researchers named Thomas Stanley and William Danko studied the behaviors of people who had accumulated over a million dollars of net worth. The culmination of their research was the 1996 book The Millionaire Next Door. Stanley and Danko’s findings showed, as their book’s title suggests, that millionaires don’t tend to look or act the way we expect them to, much less the way popular culture has trained us to perceive them.Millionaires: They’re just like usIn reality, the people who build up lot of wealth also drive boring cars, hunt for bargains, and fly coach even when they have the means to throw their money around if they wanted to. They would be more comfortable in the middle-class home of The Simpsons than in the gaudy beachside manors of The O.C.Building on this insight, The Millionaire Next Door goes on to argue that people who accumulate wealth have certain behaviors which can in turn predict a person’s wealth-building potential.In reading Stanley and Danko’s conclusions, I couldn’t help but compare these behaviors with those of the freelancers I know and work with. While I can’t say I know many millionaires, I do know a lot of freelancers who exhibit the types of behaviors that can indicate the potential to build and maintain wealth.Building wealth millionaire-styleIf your goal is not just to survive on your freelance work but to achieve financial security and even build wealth over your career, your behavior today will affect your chances of reaching that goal in the long run. With these six behavioral traits from Stanley and Danko’s millionaires next door, you can give yourself a better chance at achieving a secure financial future.ConfidenceSuccessful freelancers, whether they admit to it or not, have a high degree of confidence in their work. Freelancing requires confidence that your skills are valuable enough to make a living from them, and despite feelings of doubt, anxiety, and impostor syndrome, that underlying confidence is what supports the drive to pursue your passion.To achieve financial security, you must first believe in your ability to reach that goal. The same underlying confidence that drives your freelance career can also feed your financial decisions. Like developing your skills as a freelancer, making confident financial decisions requires knowledge and practice. It might also require collaborating with someone you trust, like a spouse, parent, or financial advisor. Just make sure not to go too far: As anyone with experience in the stock market can tell you, overconfidence can be just as damaging as underconfidence when it comes to holding onto the money you’ve earned.FocusFreelancers recognize the importance of staying focused while they’re doing their work. Whether you decide to rent a desk at WeWork or you’re perfectly comfortable cranking out projects on the living room sofa, the overriding factor in choosing a particular work environment is whether it helps or hinders your ability to focus and stay productive.Staying focused is a key behavior for accumulating wealth. Think of your financial plan like a long-term project: There are lots of mundane tasks to check off like tracking your expenses or contributing to your retirement plan, and you might endure long stretches where it feels like you’re not making any progress. It can be easy to get distracted and seek short-term satisfaction with a new gadget or a weekend trip. Staying focused on the end goal–the deliverable of your financial well-being–is crucial to sticking with a long-term strategy, whether it’s a big project for a client or your own financial plan.FrugalityWhile not all of the freelancers I know can be described as frugal, we can all speak of lean times we’ve had at various points in our careers. Frugality is defined as the ability to live below one’s means, and it’s crucial to the ability to build wealth–after all, you can’t expect to have much savings to build on if you’ve spent all your money to begin with.Freelancers have a unique situation when it comes to income that can make it hard to track expenses and plan for saving. Slow periods and late-paying clients can force even established freelancers to dip into savings or carry the occasional credit card balance. If work picks up and those checks finally arrive but you’re still behind the point where you started, you may need to examine your spending habits and find ways to cut back. I’m not saying everybody needs to go back to living on instant noodles and Three-Buck Chuck, but a little awareness on how you’re spending money may make you recognize ways you can spend less without meaningfully impacting your lifestyle.PlanningHow do you set out processes in your work? If you’ve got some experience, you’ve probably come to realize that it’s possible to get more work done (and often with a better end product) with an orderly workflow, a road map that gets you from the starting point to the end goal. Winging it won’t get you very far: You’ll either see the light and adapt good processes, or your career will be brief and frustrating.Financial planning is what I do, so obviously I think it’s an important behavior for achieving financial security. Having a vision of where you’re going and how you’re getting there can help you achieve things you might have never thought were possible, like buying a home or retiring at a certain age.Like a good project manager, you need to have clear goals, specific milestones to note along the way, methods of monitoring your progress, and good communication with all of your collaborators. Spending a little time on each of these things, or hiring a professional to help you out, can make financial security attainable even if you’re just setting out.ResponsibilityWhen you’re your own boss, the buck always stops with you. Freelancers are acutely aware of the role they play in their own success, and usually feel responsible–sometimes disproportionately so–for their setbacks.This can be a hard thing for people to accept. In the real world, there are countless factors–including luck–that contribute to anyone’s success or failure, many of which the individual may be unable or unwilling to recognize. But Stanley and Danko’s research shows that people who nevertheless feel responsible for their own roles in their financial outcomes are more likely to build wealth over their lifetimes. (It’s worth noting here that the affluent subjects of their research didn’t start out with large gifts or inheritances, so we can presume that most of them had at least some role in their financial outcome.)I don’t think you need to lug around a copy of Atlas Shrugged everywhere you go in order to maintain a healthy level of accountability. It’s OK to keep a sense of perspective on your sense of responsibility. Just be careful if you find yourself repeatedly dismissing any successes or failures as the machinations of luck. Your decisions today matter for the long term, in your freelance life and your financial plan.Social IndifferenceSocial indifference is the ability to avoid being influenced by your peer groups’ lifestyles–what past generations called “Keeping up with the Joneses.” People with high levels of social indifference are able to ignore pressure from friends, family, celebrities, and society to always own the newest and the best. Stanley and Danko identified this trait back in 1996. Since then, internet and social media companies have doubled down, making jillions of dollars by making it virtually impossible to ignore what your social peers are doing–and buying–day in and day out.There’s an additional challenge for freelancers, many of whom believe that portraying yourself as already successful makes you more desirable to potential clients. There’s even more pressure to keep up when it feels like your career is riding on it. If you let others’ actions control your decisions, however, you’ll never get out of the cycle of upgrade-and-envy that accompanies the fear of falling behind.The best way these days to achieve a higher level of social indifference is to log off. When you do find yourself on social media, remind yourself that the whole ecosystem is geared toward showing you things to buy.Finally, keep your long-term financial goals in mind. The urge to spend now will decrease when you can envision the life you’re working toward.It’s not about getting richIf your own behavior doesn’t match every one of these traits, it doesn’t mean you’ll never increase your net worth. Not all of the millionaires studied by Stanley and Danko were exceptional at all six behaviors. But if you’re aware of the areas where you’re doing well and the ones where you might struggle, you can put your energy where it’s needed most.Few of the freelancers I know aspire to millionaire-hood. Most truly only want some financial stability and the sense of security that comes along with having enough of a safety cushion to get through a few down months. But even millionaires had to start somewhere, and even if your goal is just to find a stable place the steps are still the same.It all starts with the behaviors and attitudes that will make it easier for you to plan, save, and achieve financial security.Ben Henry-Moreland is a financial planner who specializes in working with freelancers, entrepreneurs, and business owners. In his early career he was a professional opera singer. He also blogs at benhenrymoreland.comlast_img read more

Chelsea target Vidal ‘fundamental’ for Bayern

first_imgTransfers Chelsea target Vidal ‘fundamental’ for Bayern despite Goretzka deal Alex Fisher 22:41 1/26/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) arturovidal - cropped Bongarts Transfers Chelsea Bayern München Bundesliga Premier League Jupp Heynckes says the Chilean’s standing at the Allianz Arena is not under threat despite the impending arrival of a Germany international midfielder Leon Goretzka’s arrival at Bayern Munich next season does not mean Arturo Vidal will leave the Allianz Arena, according to Jupp Heynckes.Goretzka’s switch from Schalke was finally confirmed last week, the 22-year-old agreeing a free transfer to Bayern when his current deal expires in June.A lot is expected of the Germany international when he makes the move, the midfielder having impressed as Schalke have surged into Champions League contention in the Bundesliga. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player The signing of Goretzka has led to some suggesting Vidal could be the one to lose out, with Chelsea reported to be among his many suitors, but the Chile international remains an integral part of Bayern’s squad.”Arturo Vidal has a contract until 2019,” said Heynckes.”For me he is a fundamental player in our team. “He is playing at a very good level, he’s just a class player, a player who is hugely experienced, a player who is on point when you need him. “My opinion is that he is very important. I consider him a fantastic footballer. The player has to decide if he wants to stay here, and the club too.”last_img read more

Gio captains El Tri vs. Bosnia

first_imgMexico Dos Santos starts, captains El Tri; Gonzalez begins on bench vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina Jon Arnold Click here to see more stories from this author @ArnoldcommaJon Last updated 1 year ago 09:10 2/1/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Giovani dos Santos Orbelin Pineda Mexico Kelvin Kuo Mexico Mexico v Bosnia-Herzegovina Bosnia-Herzegovina Friendlies The LA Galaxy player is wearing the armband with soon-to-be rival Carlos Vela also in the starting XI SAN ANTONIO — Giovani dos Santos is starting and wearing the captain’s armband while midfielder Jonathan Gonzalez begins on the bench for the first Mexico match of 2018.The LA Galaxy star will play in the midfield of a 4-3-3 formation to begin the contest against Bosnia and Herzegovina with Chivas midfielder Orbelin Pineda and Monterrey midfielder Jesus Molina, who typically is on the Monterrey bench behind Gonzalez.Gonzalez, a Mexican-American dressed for El Tri for the first time since filing a one-time change of association earlier this year, can enter as one of six substitutes. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player With the match falling outside a FIFA date, Mexico’s squad is entirely composed of Liga MX- and MLS-based players. LAFC forward Carlos Vela is in the starting lineup as well, playing on the left wing. Leon’s Elias Hernandez will start on the other wing while Club America’s resurgent forward Henry Martin starts between them.At the back, Chivas goalkeeper Rodolfo Cota begins between the sticks as anticipated with Guillermo Ochoa still in Europe and Jesus Corona resting instead of entering the squad. Luis “Chaka” Rodriguez of Tigres starts at right back with his club teammate Hugo Ayala next to him. Though he hasn’t played with Chivas yet this season after missing preseason because of a contract dispute, Oswaldo Alanis begins the match as the left center back with Pumas winger Jesus Gallardo at left back as Mexico manager Juan Carlos Osorio continues his conversion.Bosnia and Herzegovina’s starting lineup doesn’t differ much from the squad that fought the United States to a scoreless draw Sunday. They too have an MLS midfielder wearing the captain’s armband as the Philadelphia Union’s Haris Medunjanin leads Robert Prosinecki’s men into the friendly.On the bench along with Gonzalez are club teammate Cesar Montes, LA Galaxy midfielder Jonathan dos Santos, Santos center back Nestor Araujo, America defender Edson Alvarez, Pachuca midfielder Jorge “Burrito” Hernandez, Tigres winger Javier Aquino, Chivas attacker Rodolfo Pizarro, Tigres winger Jurgen Damm and reserve goalkeepers Jonathan Orozco and Gibran Lajud.last_img read more

a month agoAC Milan rival Arsenal, Liverpool for Donyell Malen

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say AC Milan rival Arsenal, Liverpool for Donyell Malenby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveThe battle for PSV Eindhoven striker Donyell Malen is heating up.The Mirror says AC Milan have joined Arsenal and Liverpool in the race for Malen, according to latest reports from Italy.Arsenal are monitoring £50million-rated striker Malen, two years after allowing the young Dutchman to move back to Holland for just £500,000.Malen has scored 11 goals in just 13 matches in four competitions for Eindhoven this season after hitting double figures in his breakthrough campaign.Eindhoven believe he is already worth 100 times the sum they paid Arsenal to secure his services.Malen was dubbed the new Thierry Henry when he spent two seasons with the Gunners’ youth team. However, he featured in just two pre-season friendlies for Arsene Wenger before being sold to PSV in the summer of 2017. last_img read more