Posted in Entrepreneur, Uncategorized

Perfect Pitch idea for Perfect Idea

On paper, your pet project sounds like a fantastic idea — but the people making the decisions just don’t agree.

So why was your great IT project rejected and how can you convince the rest of the c-suite that your initiative is valuable? Here are some essential tips from the experts.

1. Make sure other executives understand the benefits

Less politics, more action: How CIOs can benefit from taking an interim role

Poli Avramidis, CIO at the Bar Council, says some IT leaders struggle to articulate the strengths of technology. He says successful pitching of an idea often varies from person to person, with key differences in receptiveness between businesses and sectors. However, there are common issues.

“The biggest problem is when the CIO and the board don’t talk the same language,” he says. “Some IT leaders can choose to focus on the benefits of technology, rather than thinking about the business challenges the implementation is going to overcome.”

Also Read : How to Fake, Till you Make It

Avramidis says CIOs cannot afford to be waylaid by their own interests and priorities. “You have to see things from other c-suite executives’ points of view,” he says. “You need to understand the thinking processes of others, particularly in regards to how technology makes sense for other lines of business.”

What is straightforward to a CIO might be unclear beyond the IT department. “We all know that if you have an integrated system that will you will actually save the company time and money. But you must make sure other executives can see the benefits of the approach that you’re suggesting,” says Avramidis.

2. Call on project sponsors to do your selling work

Brad Dowden, CIO at recruitment specialist Airswift, says he believes project rejection is strongly connected to the quality of presentation. “You have to think about whether you tick the right boxes,” he says. “Ultimately, you’re doing a selling job and you have to sell the vision.”

The bad news, however, is selling is not a natural character trait of all CIOs. “Generally speaking, technologists are not sales people at all — they see a problem, they see how technology can solve that challenge, but they’re not necessarily good at presenting how that issue is going to be resolved,” he says.

Dowden encourages fellow IT professionals to remember that technology is just a small part of the actual project. “The more crucial element is business buy-in — understand what your stakeholders want to do and make them sponsors for your technology project,” he says.

“If you make other c-suite executives happy by demonstrating a clear return on investment in regards to their challenges, then the CFO and CEO don’t really have a decision to make when it comes to funding. Your peers will have already done the groundwork for you — they are your sponsors.”

3. Focus on the business change technology can deliver

Richard Corbridge, CIO for the Health Service Executive in Ireland, has an interesting take — the board should reject technology projects as often as they are accepted. Rather than feeling negative about knockbacks, technology professionals should embrace feedback and give the rest of the business the service it demands.

He says the modern CIO must ensure that the digital innovation being put forward for a board’s approval is led by the business. The justification of new resources or investments in IT can only be made when the business benefits are clear. CIOs, in short, must be credible in their peers’ eyes.

“By now, IT leaders across the globe should have come to the realisation that any technology project that cannot define its business value really is going to struggle to gain acceptance by the board or its governance structure. Yet we still insist on describing the ‘business’ as separate to IT,” says Corbridge.

“The panacea for the approval of technology projects at board level has to be when we, as IT leaders, no longer look to the business as a separate entity but consider ourselves to be part of the business. The catalyst for a digital project can and should be the business change it can deliver, and not the technological advancement it brings. When we focus on business change, board decisions become easier to make.”

4. Take a pragmatic approach to testing

Andrew Marks, former CIO and now the UK and Ireland managing director for energy in Accenture Technology Strategy, looks back on some of the proposals he rejected as IT leader and suggests a failure to support corporate objectives is a common theme.

“CIOs don’t want to stop creative thinking, but they will want to see investments in innovation tied to business aims, whether driving up revenue, customer loyalty or reducing operating costs,” he says. “As a CIO, I wouldn’t say ‘no’ to testing a well formed business idea, while I would say ‘no’ to playing for the sake of it. You do need to show people how a new technology might add value. Testing allows you to call a halt if an idea does not appear to be doing what was hoped.”

Marks remembers an incident as CIO when members of his own IT team proposed buying a selection of new-to-market tablets to understand their capability. The request was held back until the team could tie the investment to a set of business challenges. The approach allowed room for play and creativity, but the investment had a tangible end in mind.

Marks says any spending decisions regarding technology must be justified. He also suggests that sentiment is as true for IT managers looking to change direction on a current investment, as it is for those looking for financial backing for a new initiative.

“I work with IT leaders who have both an absolute focus on their organisation’s end customer and who are also having to make difficult decisions on systems and services,” he says. “Taking a pragmatic approach to testing ideas can help filter out the weaker ideas and leave only the best — and most likely successful — ideas to be taken forward. That way, you are more likely to create a track record of successful change and to receive future c-suite backing for new ideas.”

Posted in Managing yourself, Uncategorized

3 Task Which Every Entrepreneur Should Outsource

Outsourcing. It is not an unfamiliar word in the entrepreneurial sphere. More and more entrepreneurs are trying to infuse this tactic in their business to be more productive.

 

With books like “The 4 Hour Work Week,” the benefits of outsourcing have been overstated. Many entrepreneurs want to start outsourcing. However, many of them do not know where to start.

 

First, it is important for the entrepreneur to know and plan which areas of their business are better suited to be outsourced to an agency or group of freelancers.

There is no doubt that there are parts of your business that you would prefer not to do, whether it is due a lack of competency or interest. Why spend days or weeks working on tasks that are simply frustrating for you? Would it not be better to outsource those things to someone who has a track record of delivering superb results?

 

If you are facing difficulty in choosing what to outsource, consider delegating these three tasks to increase productivity and free up your time for other activities.

 

Social Media

To many entrepreneurs, it appears that social media is overrated. It is partially true. However, it would be foolish to run a business without having a social media presence.

Social media can easily become time consuming. Every entrepreneur has their own social media addiction, whether that is Facebook or YouTube. There is no doubt that those social media feeds are distracting, but you do not have to overwhelm yourself with it. It is better to outsource it.

 

Depending on your preference, you may find one of the following approaches suitable for your business.

 

1. Hands-off approach — Assign your assistant to create and schedule your social media posts. They can create a HootSuite account and start syncing your social media accounts. Then, they can start creating and scheduling your social media posts via the dashboard.

With the hands-off approach, your assistant will focus on creating and scheduling lots of content while adjusting posts to match themes and trends, when necessary.

 

2. Hands-on approach — Assign your assistant to dedicate a set amount of hours to social media. This approach is similar to the hands-off approach, with the addition of having your assistant to interact with the audience in either real-time or on a frequent basis.

 

3. Hybrid approach — Assign your assistant to create and schedule your social media posts as well as infrequently interacting with the commenters. This approach is similar to the hands-on approach with the difference being the interaction is not as frequent. So, for example, your assistant may check social media for comments and questions twice a day rather than every two hours during their work shift.

I have always advised entrepreneurs to stick to the maximum of two social media channels. However, when you have an assistant, you may find it worth adding another social media channel to your marketing arsenal.

Although, please keep in mind that it is better to put out a consistent feed of content on a few social media channels than to put out an inconsistent feed of content on many social media channels. Make sure that you have a clear social media strategy before delegating it to your assistant.

 

Public Relations

Almost every entrepreneur wants their brand to be on television and in popular publications. It is getting featured that is the difficult part for the entrepreneur. Unless public relations are one of your strengths, it is in your best interest to outsource it to someone who has PR experience (preferably someone who has significantly more experience than you).

There are several free PR services, but the most popular one is HARO (Help A Reporter Out). I would recommend starting there first. I have used HARO to get featured in Fast Company and Inc. Magazine.

 

Website Support

As your brand becomes more popular, this area will become more important.

Your website is your home. There is an adage that says, “Your first impression may be your last.” Wouldn’t you want to assure that website visitors are getting the best impression of your brand?

While website providers like WordPress and Squarespace have made it easier to administer your site, it is probably not a good idea to invest much time in it, especially if your intention is to grow your brand as quickly as possible.

Instead, outsource this area of your business to someone else. Whoever you choose can not only keep your website current with content but can interact with the audience by replying to blog post comments and answering emails.

In an era where competition is at an all-time high, it is pertinent to maximize productivity by leveraging other people’s time. Outsourcing is your most important form of leverage. If you want to grow your business fast or even put your business on auto-pilot, nothing will be more important than outsourcing.

This article originally appeared in Entrepreneur Magazine.

Posted in Entrepreneur, Uncategorized

How To Launch A Startup In 1 Month

If you have read the Founder’s Table series , or the story of any of the startups we featured, you are probably challenging yourself to take steps toward a working on a problem you can solve or a side hustle to call your own startup. Yet, the idea of launching a startup might be frightening, especially without a guide or mentor. But it need not be.

This why the TechPoint team is partnering with Wole Ogunlade; a growth marketer for early stage startups who is also one of our contributors to launch a free email course; “How to launch a startup in 1 month”.

Over the course of 11 days, you will receive free lessons, delivered by email, from already successful experts and you will be joined by thousands of entrepreneurs like you on a mission to launch successful startups and online businesses.

This series is for anyone interested in someday running their own business. Even if you are considering doing this as a side project, you can find this course as a great starting point. You’ll learn how to transform an idea into an operating business. By participating, you will discover the important questions to ask and resources that will be there to help you when the time comes to launch your venture.
The free email course focuses on 3 things:

How To Generate Ideas That Become Meaningful MVP Product.
Strategies to get your product to your customers.
Turn your customer to more revenue and referral.
There are bonuses to be given away before the course ends. One is a free consultation with Dotun Olowoporoku of Starta and a User testing ticket to analyse how real people use your product and to identify problem areas in your user interface courtesy of Test Everything.

Registration ends on 19th June, 2016, you can secure you spot by signing up now .

If you know anyone who will benefit from this course, let them know about it. You can share with them with the options provided below.

This why the TechPoint team is partnering with Wole Ogunlade; a growth marketer for early stage startups who is also one of our contributors to launch a free email course; “How to launch a startup in 1 month”.

Over the course of 11 days, you will receive free lessons, delivered by email, from already successful experts and you will be joined by thousands of entrepreneurs like you on a mission to launch successful startups and online businesses.

This series is for anyone interested in someday running their own business. Even if you are considering doing this as a side project, you can find this course as a great starting point. You’ll learn how to transform an idea into an operating business. By participating, you will discover the important questions to ask and resources that will be there to help you when the time comes to launch your venture.
The free email course focuses on 3 things:

  • How To Generate Ideas That Become Meaningful MVP Product.
  • Strategies to get your product to your customers.
  • Turn your customer to more revenue and referral.

There are bonuses to be given away before the course ends. One is a free consultation with Dotun Olowoporoku of Starta and a User testing ticket to analyse how real people use your product and to identify problem areas in your user interface courtesy of Test Everything.

Registration ends on 19th June, 2016, you can secure you spot by signing up now .

If you know anyone who will benefit from this course, let them know about it. You can share with them with the options provided below.

Posted in Startup Story, Uncategorized

Pune-based startup Amura helps marketers maximise returns via digital marketing

Vikram Kotnis, a serial entrepreneur, introduced Ketan Sabnis, Vinayak Katkar, Pratik Rokade and Kiran Narasareddy, who were working for Fortune 500 companies, to entrepreneurship. Together, these College of Engineering, Pune, graduates founded digital marketing firm Amura Marketing Technologies in 2010. “With digital, we saw a huge opportunity and decided to craft solutions and services around digital marketing,” says Kotnis, Founder and Managing Director.

This Pune-based startup,  ..

Posted in Entrepreneur, Startup Story, Uncategorized

Venture Factory rolls out incubation programme for healthcare startups

Bangalore-based Venture Factory has launched an incubation and accelerator programme for healthcare startups. As part of this, the firm will fund up to five startups in the space by the end of this year.

Christened VF-Healthcare, the programme will incubate healthcare startups and make an initial investment in these. Venture Factory will also participate in the follow-on round when these startups demonstrate business viability and the ability to scale up operations.

“When startups that are incubated by us reach the next level through our selection process, we make a formal investment of $200,000-$500,000. As startups move on after that, we will also look to participate in their follow-on rounds. This will be in the range of $500,000-$2 million,” said Vinay Rao, venture partner, Venture Factory.

Venture Factory has also entered into strategic partnerships with online healthcare platform Practo, hospital chain Cloudnine and Plan India (the Indian chapter of non-government organisation Plan International which focuses on children) to build an ecosystem, which would provide its healthcare-focused startups access to doctors, healthcare professionals and patients as well as services across the healthcare spectrum ranging from on-ground touch points to cloud based services and products.

While digital-enabled healthcare startups are its focus, Venture Factory is open to offline players but only those which have some amount of technology play, said Rao.

Startup incubator Venture Factory is run by i2india Pvt. Ltd, which was founded in 2006 by IIT Kanpur and Wharton graduate Deepam Mishra with $10 million initial capital from a host of investors, including Imperial Innovations, a subsidiary of UK’s Imperial College for technology transfer, commercialisation and investment, UK-based entrepreneurs Chris Mathias and Tom Singh, former Ranbaxy CEO DS Brar and US-based Harbour Ventures, besides Tata Sons.

Established in 2012, Venture Factory saw its first batch of startups graduate last year.

While the first programme was open to startups from all sectors, going forward the focus will be on healthcare and infrastructure (mostly logistics) startups. The VF-Healthcare programme is also an initiative under this umbrella. The second batch of incubees are expected to be on-boarded soon and the screening process is currently under way.

“Given our expertise and the kind of startups we have worked with, we believe these two sectors show a huge scope for growth and disruption,” said Rao.

The firm makes investments in startups through i2india, which is also its external investment arm. Currently, i2india has six startups in its startup portfolio.

In June last year, it invested $500,000 (Rs 3.2 crore) into Bangalore-based Shippr Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which runs an online aggregator platform for intra-city logistics service providers .

In May last year, it invested $500,000 (Rs 3.35 crore) in parenting and child safety-focused portal ZenParent.in.

It has also backed i2play interactive, a startup that enhances gamified learning for children; GPS Renewables, a waste management solution startup; Tsepak, a tech startup that makes a geo-tracking and analytics product called Busybox; and CL Infotech, an IT education service provider in the higher education space.

Posted in Startup Story, Uncategorized

Startup Breaking Publishing World

When everything is getting digitized than why should publishing industry should lack behind. A recent survey by Nielsen India revealed that India’s book market, currently the sixth largest in the world at Rs 26,100 crore, is likely to touch Rs. 73,900 crore by 2020. The survey says that more than 70 per cent of the publishers in India have digitized their content to produce eBook versions thereby reaching the target customers through a digital medium.

Sensing the opportunity, Mahendra Sharma plans to cater this huge growing market by founding Matrubharti, a self-publishing platform and an app serving eBooks in Indian languages.

It’s first of its kind app from India that takes content directly from authors and publishing it as an eBook. It uses patent-pending low-cost technology for digital rights protected eBooks.

Breaking the barrier for new authors, Matrubharti has given an international platform to publish content to many new and aspiring writers in regional languages.

Money Rolling In

eBook publisher Matrubharti has recently raised a seed funding of Rs. 20 lakh from Viridian Capital. The seed funding amount will be used for investment in technology and expanding the team.

Incubated at the Espark-Viridian Accelerator Centre at GIFT City (Gujarat International Finance Tec-City), Matrubharti has more than 1,800 authors registered and have published 4,350 eBooks, so far.

Speaking on the seed funding and future of digital content, Sharma said, “Investment by Viridian Capital in our firm is a testimony that we have a business model which is likely to grow at a healthy rate. Matrubharti offers a digital platform to new and aspiring writers, which is our unique selling proposition among digital publishers.”

“We have a premium subscription model through which readers can download any number of eBooks during a particular period, which reduces the cost of purchasing an eBook for readers” Mr. Sharma added.

On Future Growth

Matrubharti publishes over 450 eBooks every month with 7.5 lakhs of eBooks downloaded so far. “Our growth rate is 20 per cent month on month and we expect a similar growth over the next one year, as we believe that penetration of smartphones would increase the sales of eBooks going forward,” said Sharma.

Published in six languages so far, Matrubharti plans to publish eBooks in 21 languages.

These platforms encourage authors to write more and spread word of knowledge among the masses.

Posted in Startup Story, Uncategorized

Clean Tech Startup Has Spark To Change The World

The Entrepreneurial ecosystem has witnessed a sudden surge in rising of clean tech startups to address the growing need to clean waste water.

According to the United Nations, water use has grown at more than twice the rate of population increase in the last century. It is estimated that the demand for water will surpass the supply as early as 2025.

Indian startups are emerging to cater this global market. If we go by figures, the overall environmental technologies market in India including goods and services is almost $15 billion.

To cater this huge market, Thinkphi’s, a clean technology company has a long term goal to address a global market for environmental goods which is targeted to reach $1.9 trillion by 2020.  Startup creates sustainable engineered products that intelligently conserve water, energy and waste.

With the growth of urbanization and water scarcity in India, Thinkphi’s “UltaChaata” can become a much-needed solution for smart cities and businesses in India and Globally.

Founded in 2015 by Samit Choksi and Priya Vakil Choksi, Thinkphi mission is to build products that create a positive impact on the environment by using sustainable and renewable resources.

Within a short span since inception, Thinkphi has steadily built a team of engineers with a background in mechanical, computer science and industrial design who believe that simple ideas, inspired by nature, have the power to change the world.

Money Flowing In

The venture has raised an angel round of funding from serial entrepreneur Nimmagadda Prasad an early backer of successful companies such as; Matrix Laboratories, Maa TV, and Care Hospitals. Most recently he invested in Sachin Tendulkar’s ISL team Kerala Blasters.

The angel round of funding will be deployed primarily towards expanding operations, R&D team and starting of sales and distribution activities. With a mission of building a sustainable business the company plans to stay asset light and ensure focused effort and detail is spent on product design, material selection, and manufacturing process.

Commenting on the investment, the Co-founders said, “Thinkphi is an innovative company creating disruptive solutions to environmental problems. We are grateful to have investors who believed in our vision – we are confident that the investment in R&D and good product design will deliver positive results while building company value. We spend a great deal of time in our talent acquisition processes to build the right team who believe in our mission and can bring new ideas and skill sets”

All About UltaChaata

The company’s first product is almost like a smart tree called “UltaChaata”, an inverted canopy looking structure provides potable water by capturing rainwater during the monsoon and solar energy during the rest of the year.

Each unit has the capability to harvest and filter up to 100,000 liters during the rainy season. With a maximum solar capacity of 1.5KW the product also includes an intelligent lighting system which provides various levels of programmable lighting options and a mobile charge unit, thereby making it a completely self-sustaining installation for the outdoors.

Powered by a central operating system called the “phi-box”, the controls help the lighting run for 4 to 5 days on a single solar charge and can provide potable quality drinking water through its inbuilt filter.

The operating system also monitors, captures data, and allows users to communicate with a cluster of units over the cloud. The company has also filed multiple global patents on design and utility which smartly converges water harvesting and renewable energy, ideal for smart cities, industries or large campuses.

Future Plans

With the focus on innovation and R&D, Thinkphi hopes to launch future products around energy saving devices and consumer waste management. The company uses a unique interactive process of product development and enhancement which is closely tied to its proprietary sustainability wheel, staying closely to its goal to become Earth’s most sustainable company.

The company has made some early sales of its patented Rainwater and Solar harvesting product to key customers like Godrej Interio and Rustomjee.

Startups like these are the asset for nature as they are addressing the most curial environmental problems. We need more of such startups so that we can make our mother Earth healthier place to live.

Source : https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/277400

 

Posted in Managing yourself, Uncategorized

Being ‘focused’ leads to bonafide ‘leadership’

The art of being focused leads to leadership. Study reveals that leadership skills can be nurtured by means of focusing on ‘oneself’, focusing on ‘others’ and focusing on the ‘greater globe’. Striking a proper balance between self-introspection as well as constructive focus on others enables a true leader gaining emotional intelligence (self-awareness and getting in touch with inner voice), acumen to innovate and above all devise strategies to manage his or her respective organizations.

Our beloved and amiable Father of Nation (Bapu) Mahatma Gandhi is an
instance par excellence. Besides, most of our great men have already
carved a niche in this regard.

Swami Vivekananda’s clarion call for character-building and nation-building was ‘first be, then make’.

It has been experimented and concluded that failure to focus inward
leaves one rudderless while failure to focus on others renders one
clueless. Needless to mention that failure to focus outward can render
one blindfolded.

Leaders heeding inner voices can get armed with resources to make
better decisions.

Paying attention is a mental muscle that can be geared up practising
right kind of exercise. The time-tested and okayed essential exercise
is meditation as it builds up concentration and calmness, and heals
stress and strain.

It has been discovered that players, attuned to the rhythm of their
breathing, experience the strengthening of selective attention as a
feeling of calm focus as inculcated in meditation.

Great leaders possess three vital skills. First is the ability to
engage others in shared meaning like diving into a chaotic work
environment to mobilise employees around an entirely new approach to
management. Second is a distinctive and compelling voice. Third is a
sense of integrity that means including a strong set of values.

Zeroing in on sensory impressions of ourselves at the need of hour is
one major element of self-awareness while combining our experiences
across time into a coherent view of our authentic selves is another
crucible experience of leadership.

Just as a camera lens can be set narrowly on a single point or more
widely to take in a panoramic view, one can focus tightly or
expansively.

Strengthening the ability to maintain open awareness requires leaders
to do something that verges on the unnatural: cultivate at least
sometimes a willingness to not be in control, not offer up their own
views and not judge others. That is less a matter of deliberate action
than of attitude adjustment.

One path to making that adjustment is through the classic power of
positive thinking, because pessimism narrows our focus, whereas
positive emotions widen our attention and our receptiveness to the new
and unexpected.

Cognitive control enables executives to pursue a goal despite
distractions and setbacks. The same neural circuitry that allows such
a single-minded pursuit of goals also manages unruly emotions. Good
cognitive control can be seen in people who stay calm in a crisis,
tame their own agitation, and recover from a debacle or defeat.

Executives who can effectively focus on others emerge as natural
leaders regardless of organisational or social rank.

How we focus holds the key to exercising willpower.

The stronger the cognitive control, the less susceptible we are to distraction.

When confronted by an upsetting problem, let us think of a traffic
signal. The red light means stop, calm down, and think before you act.
The yellow light means slow down and think of several possible
solutions. The green light means try out a plan and see how it works.

Whenever one notices that the mind has wandered, one can simply return
to breathing.

The word “attention” comes from the Latin attendere, meaning “to reach
toward.” This is a perfect definition of focus on others, which is the
foundation of empathy and of an ability to build social
relationships-the second and third pillars of emotional intelligence.

Executives who can effectively focus on others are easy to recognise.
They are the ones who find common ground, whose opinions carry the
most weight, and with whom other people want to work. They emerge as
natural leaders regardless of organisational or social rank.

We talk about empathy most commonly as a single attribute. But a close
look at where leaders are focusing when they exhibit it reveals three
distinct kinds (cognitive empathy, emotional empathy and emphatic
concern), each important for leadership effectiveness.

While cognitive empathy is the ability to understand another person’s
perspective, emotional empathy is the ability to feel what someone
else feels and emphatic concern is the ability to sense what another
person needs from you.

Cognitive empathy enables leaders to explain themselves in meaningful
ways, a skill essential to think about feelings rather than to feel
them directly. It is also an outgrowth of self-awareness.

Emotional empathy is important for effective mentoring, managing
clients and reading group dynamics.

Empathic concern, closely related to emotional empathy, enables us to
sense not just how people feel but what they need from you. It is what
one wants in one’s doctor, spouse and   boss.

Research suggests that as people rise through the ranks, their ability
to maintain personal connections suffers.

Getting a grip on our impulse to empathise with other people’s
feelings can help us make better decisions when someone’s emotional
flood threatens to overwhelm us.

Hence, let’s place attention centre stage so that we can direct it
wherever and whenever needed.

And thus, let’s learn to master our attention, and, Presto! we’ll be
in command of where our and our organisation focus. After all, the
time-tested and okayed mantra goes: Being focused paves path for a
bona fide leadership.

Posted in Managing yourself, Uncategorized

Five Things To Know About Brain.

Every animal you can think of – mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, amphibians has a brain. But the human brain is unique. Although it’s not the largest, it gives us the power to speak, imagine and problem solve. It is truly an amazing organ.

The brain performs an incredible number of tasks including the following:

  • It controls body temperature, blood pressure, heart rate and breathing.
  • It accepts a flood of information about the world around you from your various senses (seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching).
  • It handles your physical movement when walking, talking, standing or sitting.
  • It lets you think, dream, reason and experience emotions.
  • All of these tasks are coordinated, controlled and regulated by an organ that is about the size of a small head of cauliflower.

These are 5 things you must know about the brain.

  1. Avoid multitasking

A study showed that people distracted by incoming email and phone calls saw a 10-point fall in their IQs. What’s the impact of a 10-point drop? The same as losing a night of sleep. More than twice the effect of smoking marijuana.

Doing several things at once is a trick we play on ourselves, thinking we’re getting more done. In reality, our productivity goes down by as much as 40%. We don’t actually multitask. We switch-task, rapidly shifting from one thing to another, interrupting ourselves unproductively, and losing time in the process.

multitasking-is-evil7
Multitasking effects

Effects of Multitasking

a. Multitasking is a source of stress

Humans are inherently bad at multitasking and it’s a poor strategy for productivity. What you might not realize is that multitasking and frequent interruptions are sources of stress that can have a notable impact on your health and sense of well-being.

b. The vicious circle of multitasking

Habitual multitasking will keep you very busy, but your ability to complete even short-term goals will likely be compromised. Like a vicious circle, lack of accomplishment leads to frustration, stress, and a return to multitasking in order to make up for lost time.

How to overcome multitasking effect

a. Prioritize. Each morning, prepare a task list for the day and prioritize the tasks by importance in relation to your most important goals.

b. Start early. Get to work on your most important tasks early in the day so that you don’t run out of time.

c. Limit distractions. If you’re working on a computer, close down all windows that aren’t necessary for the task at hand, especially things like email, Twitter, Facebook, email, etc.

d. Silence your phone. If possible, shut off your cell phone for a while to avoid unnecessary interruption.

e. Control your workplace. Work in an environment that is conducive to focus. If necessary, isolate yourself from people who might unnecessarily interrupt or distract you.

  1. Brain is more creative when you are tired

As per the article published in Thinking and Reasoning a slightly groggy and tired brain may produce some of your best creative insights. According to Mareike Wieth, a professor at Albion College who led a 2011 study show that people perform better on creative, insight-based challenges when they are less awake. The reason may be that finding solutions to creative obstacles require seeing a problem from a new angle or point of view.

During the most productive hours of your day, your ability to focus is at its peak, and you can skillfully block out distractions. On the other hand, when you’re tired, your thoughts flit about more freely.

Clutter, whether it’s physical or mental, happens to be very stimulating for the mind; and it just so happens that our brains are the most cluttered when we’re tired. And there’s research to prove it.

This Scientific American article explains how distractions can actually be a good thing for creative thinking:

Insight problems involve thinking outside the box. This is where susceptibility to “distraction” can be of benefit. At off-peak times, we are less focused, and may consider a broader range of information. This wider scope gives us access to more alternatives and diverse interpretations, thus fostering innovation and insight. 

  1. How meditation helps brain

Sara Lazar, Ph.D., the study’s senior author, said,

“Although the practice of meditation is associated with a sense of peacefulness and physical relaxation, practitioners have long claimed that meditation also provides cognitive and psychological benefits that persist throughout the day”

Last week, a study from UCLA found that long-term mediators had better-preserved brains than non-meditators as they aged. Participants who’d been meditating for an average of 20 years had more grey matter volume throughout the brain

yoga_by_you_your_brain_on_meditation-WSD-04182014
Meditation benifits

 

Meditation Reduces Activity in the Brain’s “Me Center”

One of the most interesting studies in the last few years carried out at Yale University, found that mindfulness meditation decreases activity in the default mode network (DMN), the brain network responsible for mind-wandering and self-referential thoughts – a.k.a., “monkey mind.”

Just a Few Days of Training Improves Concentration and Attention

Meditation Can Help with Addiction – One study, for example, pitted mindfulness training against the American Lung Association’s freedom from smoking (FFS) program and found that people who learned mindfulness were many times more likely to have quit smoking by the end of the training

Benefits of meditation to human mind

  • Meditation can help you deal with stress and negative emotions
  • At the same time, meditation could boost positive skills like memory and awareness.
  • There are also signs that meditation can help boost your immune system – or at least help ward off the flu.
  • Meditation may help prevent genetic damage.
  1. Brain and Exercise

In a study done at the University of British Columbia, researchers found that regular aerobic exercise, the kind that gets your heart and your sweat glands pumping, appears to boost the size of the hippocampus, the brain area involved in verbal memory and learning. Resistance training, balance and muscle toning exercises did not have the same results.

Exercise helps memory and thinking through both direct and indirect means. The benefits of exercise come directly from its ability to reduce insulin resistance, reduce inflammation, and stimulate the release of growth factors—chemicals in the brain that affect the health of brain cells, the growth of new blood vessels in the brain, and even the abundance and survival of new brain cells.

Indirectly, exercise improves mood, sleep, reduces stress and anxiety. Problems in these areas frequently cause or contribute to cognitive impairment.

Exercise Shields You from Stress and Depression – Exercise is one of the “secret weapons” to overcoming depression, and studies have shown its efficiency typically surpasses that of antidepressant drugs.

To Boost Creativity, Get Moving! – “Four experiments demonstrate that walking boosts creative ideation in real-time and shortly after… Walking opens up the free flow of ideas, and it is a simple and robust solution to the goals of increasing creativity and increasing physical activity.”

  • Benefits of exercise to brain
  • Exercise prevents both brain and muscle decay
  • Exercise can help you sharp well into old age
  • Exercise shields you from stress and depression
  • Exercise boosts brain growth and regeneration

While it’s never too late to start exercising, the earlier you begin and the more consistent you are, the greater your long-term rewards. Having an active lifestyle is really an investment in your future well-being, both physically and mentally.

Brain exercise
Exercise benifits on brain

 

  1. Power Nap and Mind

Power naps can boost your energy, mood, productivity and creativity significantly better than the typical pick-me-up, caffeine.

A study at NASA on sleepy military pilots and astronauts found that a 40-minute nap improved performance 34% and alertness 100%.

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How long to Nap

 

Some companies like Apple or Prentice Hall Publishing have quiet rooms or meditation rooms where employees can meditate, pray, or nap

Here are some of the many proven benefits of regular power naps:

  • Power Naps increased energy and stamina
  • Power Naps reduced stress due to decreased cortisol levels
  • Power Naps improved mood due to an increase in serotonin levels
  • Power Naps reduced risk of depression
  • Power Naps improved memory and learning
  • Power Naps increased alertness and productivity
  • Power Naps improved accuracy, creativity, patience, decision-making skills

Continue reading “Five Things To Know About Brain.”