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Listen To Your Gut. Your Business May Thank You For It.

leap-of-faithI recently had the privilege of chatting with Julie Bawden Davis, contributing editor to American Express OPEN Forum, on the topic of Intuition Taking Your Business to the Next Level. As some of you may know, Strategies was conceived on a kitchen table in the home of one of our founders as we rallied the intuition that we shared to take a leap of faith and start our dream company. We set a deadline to make a profit, got new business, and the rest, of course, is history.

Along with myself, Julie interviewed a few other small business owners for this piece and asked what gut reactions and hunches they followed in order to start their companies. Read the full article HERE, and try not to get inspired.

The 4 Stages of Disruption

Steven Sinofsky of the Harvard Business School has written a terrific piece that he posted on LinkedIn this month.  Definitely worth reposting for our technology community.

The 4 Stages of Disruption

By Steven Sinofsky, LinkedIn

Innovation and disruption are the hallmarks of the technology world, and hardly a moment passes when we are not thinking, doing, or talking about these topics.

While I was speaking with some entrepreneurs recently on the topic, the question kept coming up: “If we’re so aware of disruption, then why do successful products (or companies) keep getting disrupted?”

Good question, and here’s how I think about answering it. Read more HERE.

9 Big Ideas That Will Define 2014

2014Recently LinkedIn asked its top influencers to pick the “big idea” that will most impact 2014.  Here’s is a recap of that article that was written up in the Business Insider:

The Year of the Entrepreneur
Richard Branson writes that, “Technology is helping every business, large and small, to move forward, which will only increase in the coming year.  Now, entrepreneurs can build companies at a fraction of the cost compared to the past.  All the little things that used to add up to big headaches for new businesses, from accounting to website development, are now available to small businesses, giving them the same capabilities as large enterprises at a cost they can afford.”  What an exciting thought!

The Meaning of a College Degree Will Begin to Change
Jeff Selingo, a higher education expert, discusses the importance of focusing on what people have learned – thinking beyond the 120 credit hours of college courses:

“Here’s how it basically works: Students demonstrate mastery of a subject through a series of assessment tests or assignments, instead of following a prescribed set of courses,” Selingo writes. “Faculty mentors work closely with students throughout a degree program to design a schedule and access the learning materials they need to demonstrate mastery and then another group of course evaluators grades those exams, research papers, or performance assessments.” Selingo believes that, “We need to focus on what people learn.”  I agree.

Your Online Activity will Become a Data Mine for Recruiters
Lou Adler, a career expert, has created a 10-point list of online activities that soon-to-be job seekers engage in.  Click here for that list and the rest of the Big Ideas for next year!

Breaking Bread Together

Most of us think about the colonists and the Native Americans sharing a feast together around this time of year.  Here are a few things you may not know about the “Thanksgiving” holiday:

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  • The

     Native Americans had been in North America for many years before the colonists came, and more than likely they celebrated their own harvest each year, long before 1620, so to call the 1621 celebration the “First Thanksgiving” is a myth in and of itself.

  • The first Thanksgiving in 1621 between the colonists and the Native Americans was held sometime between September and November and the feast celebration lasted for 3 days.
  • Originally, Thanksgiving was a multicultural community event – it was not just about family.
  • The colonists never called themselves pilgrims.
  • On November 26, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln announced the 1863 Thanksgiving Proclamation hoping to promote a more unified nation after the end of the Civil War. He announced the official Thanksgiving holiday (fourth Thursday in November) in gratitude for a pivotal Union Army victory at Gettysburg that same year.
  • For the first Thanksgiving, the colonists did not dress in black (only on Sundays) and they did not wear those funny buckles and shoes your kids draw in school around this time of year.
  • Contrary to popular belief, the Puritan colonists were fun people, and they liked to laugh and wear bright colors!
  • Corn, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie and cranberries were not on the original menu – however,  the colonists may have included cod, eel, clams, lobster and even seal in their feast.

Well, however you celebrate the fourth Thursday of November, Strategies hopes that you enjoy the company of others while you feast on whatever is your delight!