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Project Management, Leadership: All Skills Which Can Be Developed Whilst You Are Studying At University

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Your time at your university is spent preparing for the rest of your life once you graduate, and while most of this learning is done in the classroom, there is plenty that you can learn outside the classroom, as well. If you are going to school for business, there are a number of skills that you’re going to need in the business world which can be learned outside of class while you’re at university. Leadership skills and project management are two of the main skills which can be learned.

 

Learning Leadership Skills at University

Leadership is one of the easiest skills to develop. If you are ever given a group project, this is the perfect opportunity to step up and cement yourself as the leader of the group so that you can then delegate tasks to the other members of the group and learn those important leadership skills. In addition, you could host a study group for a big upcoming test and take the leadership role in that environment, as well. Both of these scenarios will allow you to hone your leadership skills; you can figure out how to motivate others and command them.

Learning Project Management Skills at University

University in itself is a giant project that needs to be managed. You have to balance studying, homework, class time, work, your social life and more all at once, and learning how to organize yourself to get through this alive will help you immensely once you get started in your career. In addition, you can use those project management skills in your group projects and study groups as well- any situation where you are working with multiple people, you can flex your brain and put these skills to use, so it’s good to always keep that in mind.

Other Opportunities to Hone your Skills

In addition to study groups and group projects, there are plenty of other opportunities for you to use your project management and leadership skills. Look for volunteer opportunities and ask your boss at your current job if there is any additional responsibility that you can take on for an opportunity to work on your skills. There are opportunities almost everywhere you look, the key is to know how to make them work and how to apply your leadership and project management skills so that they are developed in the best way possible.

Start Developing your Skills Today

As you’ve seen, there is definitely plenty of opportunity to build your leadership and project management skills while you’re at university. You can rest assured that this will help make you a better candidate once you start applying for jobs, and it also gives you some great answers to interview questions when you’re asked how you have shown competency in these areas in the past. Overall, just remember to look at everything as an opportunity to better yourself in some way, and you should have no problem coming out of college with a lot more than just a degree.

Richmond University are the American University in London offering Batchelor degrees in history and psychology as well as good number of postgraduate subjects.

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8 Things Productive People Do During the Workday

by Ilya Pozin

Forget about your job title or profession – everyone is looking for ways to be more productive at work. It’s time to set down your gallon-sized container of coffee, toss out your three-page to-do list, and put an end to those ridiculously long emails you’ve been sending.

Experiencing a highly productive workday can feel euphoric. But contrary to popular belief, simply checking tasks off your to-do list isn’t really an indication of productivity. Truly productive people aren’t focused on doing more things; this is actually the opposite of productivity. If you really want to be productive, you’ve got to make a point to do fewer things.

Recently I spoke with project management and productivity genius Tony Wong to find out the secret to a more productive workday. He provided me with some excellent insight into what he and other like-minded productive individuals do during their work week.

Harness your productivity by taking note of these eight things:

1. Create a smaller to-do list. Getting things accomplished during your workday shouldn’t be about doing as much as possible in the sanctioned eight hours. It may be hard to swallow, but there’s nothing productive about piling together a slew of tasks in the form of a checklist. Take a less-is-more approach to your to-do list by only focusing on accomplishing things that matter.

2. Take breaks. You know that ache that fills your brain when you’ve been powering through tasks for several hours? This is due to your brain using up glucose. Too many people mistake this for a good feeling, rather than a signal to take a break. Go take a walk, grab something to eat, workout, or meditate – give your brain some resting time. Achieve more productivity during your workday by making a point to regularly clear your head. You’ll come back recharged and ready to achieve greater efficiency.

3. Follow the 80/20 rule. Did you know that only 20 percent of what you do each day produces 80 percent of your results? Eliminate the things that don’t matter during your workday: they have a minimal effect on your overall productivity. For example, on a project, systematically remove tasks until you end up with the 20 percent that gets the 80 percent of results.

4. Start your day by focusing on yourself. If you begin your morning by checking your email, it allows others to dictate what you accomplish. Set yourself in the right direction by ignoring your emails and taking the morning to focus on yourself, eat a good breakfast, meditate, or read the news.

5. Take on harder tasks earlier in the day. Knock out your most challenging work when your brain is most fresh. Save your busy work – if you have any – for when your afternoon slump rolls in.

6. Pick up the phone. The digital world has created poor communication habits. Email is a productivity killer and usually a distraction from tasks that actually matter. For example, people often copy multiple people on emails to get it off their plate – don’t be a victim of this action. This distracts everyone else by creating noise against the tasks they’re trying to accomplish and is a sign of laziness. If you receive an email where many people are CC’d, do everyone a favor by BCCing them on your reply. If your email chain goes beyond two replies, it’s time to pick up the phone. Increase your productivity by scheduling a call.

7. Create a system. If you know certain things are ruining your daily productivity, create a system for managing them. Do you check your emails throughout the day? Plan a morning, afternoon, and evening time slot for managing your email. Otherwise, you’ll get distracted from accomplishing more important goals throughout the day.

8. Don’t confuse productivity with laziness. While no one likes admitting it, sheer laziness is the No. 1 contributor to lost productivity. In fact, a number of time-saving methods – take meetings and emails for example – are actually just ways to get out of doing real work. Place your focus on doing the things that matter most as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Remember, less is more when it comes to being productive during the workday.

What’s your secret to productive workdays?

About Ilya Pozin:

Founder of Ciplex. Columnist for Inc, Forbes & LinkedIn. Gadget lover, investor, mentor, husband, father, and ’30 Under 30′ entrepreneur. Follow Ilya below to stay up-to-date with his articles and updates!

 

 

 

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Lessons in Leadership: Micromanaging is Like Dividing By Zero

When it comes to the things that we are passionate about, it can oftentimes be difficult to give up control. Whether we are entrepreneurs trying to make sure our ideas are being executed the way we see fit, or we are managers who want to make sure our team is doing work that will reflect well on us, micromanaging is not the solution.

There are different ways to supervise without micromanaging every detail and it starts with being organized. To begin, it’s important to set up a structure that allows for an employee to be flexible and develop his or her own thoughts without being slowed down. For a few milestones throughout a project, it can be beneficial to check in to see how things are going and if need be, to make minor adjustments so that the project can continue to move forward.

Along with being organized is using the right tools to stay on top of projects. Online project management tools are a great way to measure progress without having to be directly involved in all of the small details. It is easier to set clear deadlines and expectations without actually having to get an update every single minute. Entrusting your employees to their tasks is a great way for everybody to see the importance of their role in a project.

Not only is knowing how to handle micromanaging important, it’s important to know why it doesn’t work. One of the biggest reasons is that micromanaging makes you less productive and is ultimately a time waster. What’s the point of having an employee if somebody spends just as much time and energy supervising and criticizing, picking apart their performance? That time could have been spent working on other tasks that need to be completed so that twice as much work can be done in the same amount of time.

Keeping an open stream of communication, rather than dictating every step along the way, is a healthy approach to weaning yourself off of micromanaging. Try these tactics:

  • Read over your employees’ job descriptions. How many of these are tasks shared by a team, and how many are tasks you try to “help” with? If there are any overlaps, this is where you desperately need to relinquish tight control for the sake of your own effectiveness.
  • Encourage employees to give feedback about their own work processes. If anyone is capable of coming up with actionable ideas, it’s your very own team.
  • Give your employees “enough rope to hang themselves with.” This is where you can start to build trust and train yourself how to better identify talent.

At the end of the day, it is difficult to give up bad habits, especially when you’re not always aware that you’re doing it. It’s an important step, however, if you want to foster a positive and productive work environment.

Guest author Malia Anderson is a finance writer and experienced blogger from Greensboro, NC.

 

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What Web Based POS Can Do For Your Business

Many businesses are embracing web based POS in order to modernise their businesses’ operations.

You need it

Sales businesses, particularly retailers, are reliant on POS programs to enable transactions to be processed quickly and effectively.  Modern POS programs go further than this by enabling businesses to develop reports to quickly analyse and pro-actively act on customer trends in order to maximise productivity of their business.  Really effective POS programs even allow managers to analyse individual performance of their employees.  The best modern POS solutions are web based POS programs, which enable managers to actively view up to the minute facts and figures and can drive revenues quicker through a business.

Added value

The positive impacts made by installing a web based POS to your business could potentially be limitless.  Take sales figures reporting as a simple example of the impact web based POS can have.  During a busy period of specific sales focus, such as Christmas, an area manager may require, for upper management or for himself, you to report sales figures to him at various points throughout the day.  So your boss wants to know how many pink fluffy bears have been sold every hour throughout the day one week before Christmas.  Reporting this involves you initially checking and confirming how many units you’ve sold, before leaving a busy sales floor during peak trade to send an email.  Each one of those is a completely unproductive task which is ultimately time wasted which could have been better spent on something else.

If that business employed a web based POS system, none of this would be necessary.  The area manager could simply log on to the cloud, analyse the sales report and follow up with the best and worst performing stores.  Sales reporting is now an entirely painless task and one which has benefits for businesses at all levels.

Take that and multiply those benefits across numerous aspects of your business.  Imagine the time savings and productivity improvements your business will make using web based POS for dealing with aspects other than sales.  Inventory Control, Employee Attendance and Task Management are merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the possibilities of web based POS.

Why not?                                                            

Testing out web based POS is simple, and you’re sure to not be disappointed.  Most suppliers offer potential users an initial trial so they can experience the fantastic benefits on offer before taking the plunge for real.  Once a web based POS is installed, businesses will wonder why they spent so long working with other products.

Posterita is a new web based pos program which lets chain stores and single stores to manage every aspect of their operations via an easy-to-use web-based platform.

 

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