Looking At Productivity the Smarter Way? Try These!

Looking At Productivity the Smarter Way? Try These!

Managing Yourself: Extreme Productivity,Whether you like it or not, our lives are busy. The sooner we accept this reality, the better we would be able to manage out time and make sure that we are doing that efficiently. No matter what you are occupied with, whether job or studies, rarely would you be finding leisure time on a daily basis. Leave alone leisure time, you may actually worry that you will fall short of time to complete your work and daily chores. If you find yourself in this situation, do not panic as you are not alone. This is the most common complain that people all over the world have – no time! While we all have the same amount of time (24 hours) in a day, there definitely are some people who manage to complete all their daily chores on time. So, what is it that they do differently?

Productivity – the game changer!

To put in in simple words, productivity is what we all need to aim at. When we are productive, we tend to take much lesser amount of time for completing our tasks. But, in order to be productive, we have to be very sure of what needs our attention and when. Add to this the stress of being accurate at all times causes all the mess. If you are keen on being productive and want to take some smart help here, why not turn to your smart friend – your smartphone, of course!

The Productivity Apps

Smartphones have today become our lifelines. We tend to look up on our smartphone for just about everything. Whether it is work or play, our smartphone is our ultimate resort. Why not use the same indispensable tool for solving our productivity woes? Here are 5 apps that are aimed at ensuring your productivity is on the top. With these tools in place, you will not have to worry about missing your deadlines or may have to work on weekends to complete pending tasks.

  1. Mail Tracker

We live in a world where emails have replaced almost all forms of communication. One important email missed might have a major impact on our work. With Mail Tracker, you will not have to worry about this. This iOS App will notify you when your intended email recipients read your email. This will give you an indication that your message has been received by the intended recipient. The best part is that the App will give you a detailed notification on the time the mail was read and whether it was read on a mobile device or a computer. This information will ensure that you never get fooled by your subordinates or colleagues that they missed reading your email.

  1. Push Bullet

If you fear that your forgetfulness will have a negative impact on your work, this App is the right tool for you. This App is a great synchronizing tool that syncs your mobile and computer. Whether it is an alarm or a reminder that you have kept on your phone will now be displayed on your screen. The App is also very effective for file transfers between devices.

  1. Focus Lock

When it comes to productivity, cutting down distractions is important. That being said, our phone is the biggest distractor. The FocuLock App is hence important in our lives for it ensures that you are more focused on your work ans also real life interactions by blocking or locking certain apps that may cause distraction while keeping the phone available for receiving calls and emails.

  1. ETA by Eastwood

This App is ideal for taking you places with minimal hassles. This app will give you details about traffic, the best route to take and the time it will take for you to reach a certain destination. Now, you will never get late for an important meeting or miss a flight!

  1. Evernote

This is a multi-purpose app that does it all for you – take notes, prepare to-do lists, or even scan important documents. The app basically simplifies your work whether you are a student or a business professional.

How To Deliver an Effective Presentation – Top Tips

How To Deliver an Effective Presentation – Top Tips

Top tips for Effective Presentation,

One of the most important skills that you will need in the modern, technologically advanced world is the ability to present your ideas, views, or opinions clearly and effectively using any of the many digital presentation tools. Of course, getting your message across is important, but in order to do that effectively, it is not just your communication skills that will come into play. The right presentation skills are what you need and no matter what career path you choose, these skills will always be required by you at some point in time.

Presentation skills are essential for everyone. Just as mentioned above, whether you choose to be a teacher, an administrator, an executive or if you still are a student; it is your presentation skills that will make you stand out in the crowd and get noticed.

What is a presentation?

Typically, a presentation is nothing but a means of communication. The good thing about this is its flexibility. A presentation can be effectively adapted to various speaking situations such as a classroom environment, talking to a group or addressing a gathering at an event, briefing a team or even explaining your personal or professional goals and achievements during a job interview.

Giving a good presentation

So, we all know what a presentation is and how important it is in the real world. That being said, giving a good presentation is clearly more important than just delivering a sort-of-a-speech, which no one is interested in. Preparing a professional PowerPoint presentation and delivering your message with utmost confidence will definitely make your presentation good, but we want more – and, that is delivering a great presentation!

Tips to deliver an effective (great) presentation

Here are some tips that will almost instantly take your presentation from being just good to be great. The list below is collated from expert published advice of some of the world’s best presenters and hence, you can be sure that each of the tip below can be quite easily applied in any real-life situation. Whether you have given great presentations in the past or not, here are some ideas that are surely going to help you!

  1. Show your passion towards your topic and establish a connection with your listeners

When delivering a presentation, you are bound to feel a tad bit nervous. In fact, this nervousness is important because it will keep you on your toes. The best way to make sure that you don’t get too nervous or ensure that your audience sees only your confidence, connect with them. Be enthusiastic and honest. Have a talk with them, interact rather than just speak. Smile often, make eye contact with your audience – take every effort to establish a connection. If you are really passionate about your topic of presentation, it just shows!

  1. Focus on the needs of your audience

A presentation can only be effective if your audience had been able to derive a message out of it. Prepare for your presentation from your audience’s perspective. This will enable you to prepare for some questions that they may have for you. When you interact with your audience during your presentation, answer their doubts, clarify their concerns. Make your presentation simple and easily comprehendable so that your audience is able to easily understand and respond.

  1. Follow the 10-20-30 rule for your Power Point presentations

When delivering a Power Point presentation, here are some basic rules that you should keep in mind at all times –

  • Your presentation should contain no more than 10 slides
  • Your presentation should not be longer than 20 minutes
  • You should use a font size of at least 30 points for your presentation text

Another important thing to remember is that the start of your presentation is the most crucial.

In a nutshell, an effective presentation will need some extra effort and will need you to be careful at all times. You can do it, just keep your focus!

How to Prepare for Attending a Group Discussion

How to Prepare for Attending a Group Discussion

Group Discussion or the GD have become a commonplace in today’s selection process whether it is for a job selection or for getting admission to a top rated college or university. If you have applied to organizations and institutions that conduct a GD as a part of their selection process then it would important for you to prepare yourself to face a GD apart from preparing yourself to face the interview.

To be true, an interview isn’t as challenging as a GD because in a personal interview, you would be evaluated solely on your performance. When it comes to a GD however, your evaluation is comparative and based on other candidates’ performance as well. GD helps the evaluators compare and select their ideal candidates. Also, a GD majorly shows your team building skills which are absolutely essential in any organization.

To brief it all up, a GD is conducted with about 8 to 10 candidates for about 20 to 40 minutes. Sometimes, it can be just for about 15 minutes too. The topic is given to the group a few minutes before the GD begins. Typically, a GD reflects the inherent skills of the candidates as the topic leaves them with not much time to prepare. That being said, if you are keen on performing well at a GD, it does call for some preparation. While you cannot definitely get to know the topic of the GD beforehand, you definitely can hone your inherent skills. Here is what you can do to prepare yourself to face a GD –

  1. Read:

This is the first and perhaps the most crucial step in preparing yourself for the GD. The more you read, the better acquainted you would be to deal with the various topics that can be presented to you for the GD. You can read anything and everything across various subjects and industries but make sure that you are well versed with the current affairs as most often, the topics for GDs are based on recent happenings.

  1. Participate in Mock GDs:

Create an informal group with your friends or colleagues. You can even find like minded people with similar interests and qualifications through social media. Meet regularly with your group members and conduct mock GDs. This will benefit you all.

  1. Improve your communications skills:

Practice listening and speaking skills. These skills are essential to express yourself in the right tone and manner. Being assertive is important but being too aggressive will run down your chances of getting selected. So, practice well. You can try speaking to yourself in the mirror. This is a great way to evaluate yourself, your body language as well as boost your self-confidence.

While preparing yourself for the GD, keep in mind what the evaluators will be looking at – leadership skills, interpersonal skills, communication skills and persuasive skills. Also, the panellists will test your ability think and make your point to the group. Your clarity of thought, how you handle a conflict of opinion, your individual understanding of the subject, how flexible you are towards new ideas and opinions and your ability to create a consensus with the others in the group.

Of course, you may not be able to reflect all the above characteristics in the short time allotted for the GD. But whenever you do get a chance, make sure that you reflect your confident self and bear in mind the above aspects that the panellists would be looking out for. If you are able to generate a positive response, you are good to go!

Smart Steps on How to Face a Group Discussion

Smart Steps on How to Face a Group Discussion

After having cleared your technical tests and in some cases, a primary round of interview, you are most likely how to face a Group Discussion. It has become a sort of norm for management institutes, business schools and higher education colleges to have a round of Group Discussion as a part of selection process. And wait, not just for your higher educational qualifications, GDs are even important selection tools for job interviews. That being said, it would make sense to make yourself completely acquainted with what you need to know and skills that you need to hone in order to perform your best at a GD.

You have read previously here on what really a GD and you know for sure, what the evaluators would be looking for. Considering that, we have got for you here some essential information on how you should face a GD.

Facing a Group Discussion – the Six Smart Steps!

Step One: Communicate right

Communication skills are your key to success at a group discussion. It is your power of expression that would be taken into notice here. You need to be an attentive listener and an efficient speaker. Not being either will cut down your chances to get selected by the evaluators or even get noticed by them. Effective communication needs you to be assertive and this will help you hold the attention of your audience and create a positive impact. Being precise and clear is more important. And most importantly, you should allow others to speak as well. Remember, good listening skills are an important aspect of good communication.

Step Two: Gather knowledge and ideas on the topic

Knowledge of the subject on the topic and having a clear idea of the same are essential for performing well at the GD. Keep yourself updated with the recent developments or current affairs, follow news and read consistently – these are little things that will ensure you will have necessary knowledge that will help you in the GD. When you are aware of the subject matter, you will sound convincing and confident.

Step Three: Coordinate and lead

One of the basic aims of a group discussion is to judge your team building and leadership skills. A promising candidate is considered to be one who displays tactfulness and leadership qualities. You need to motivate and encourage the other members of the group to participate in the discussion apart from presenting your views assertively.

Step Four: Promote healthy exchange of thoughts

Group discussion, as the name suggests, is a discussion between the various participants. You need to ensure that you are allowing others to speak and if you do not agree to their perspective, be accommodative to listen and then state your disagreements. Your body language, your eye contact and the way you present your thoughts will win you points. Remember, you are not in a debate but in a discussion.

Step Five: Address the group as a whole

In most cases, the groups are made randomly. That would imply, you may not know the members in the group or even their names. Addressing the group as a whole is hence a strategy that will display your confidence as well as indicate that you are not nervous to be a part of the discussion.

Step Six: Prepare yourself

When the interviewer organizes a group discussion, he will mostly allot you a certain time frame to prepare yourself after giving the topic. Use this time strategically and to your best. Prepare yourself, note down points that come to your mind regarding the topic.

The above steps when followed keenly can assure your success at any GD.

What You Need To Know About Group Discussions

What You Need To Know About Group Discussions

Whether you are looking for admission to a top notch business school, university or if you are trying to get yourself placed in a high profile company, one thing that you would probably hear a lot about is a Group Discussions. Commonly known as GD, a group discussion is basically a planned and organized discussion that is judged not for results but for its participants.

When you are part of this discussion along with the others, who are all either applying for the same job as you or seeking an admission in a university or college in exactly the same course you are planning, you will be judged in comparison all the participants. This is a hence, a real time competition, to say the least. Does that make you nervous? Well, it may seem a bit overwhelming but in all reality, if you are well aware of what a GD really is and how you need to perform, you can as well turn it into a cake walk. So here, we give you a complete guide to help you understand the nutty-gritty of a group discussion or a GD.

What is a Group Discussion?

In simple terms, a group discussion is a group activity. It is a process of interview for a job as well as a part of admission process into the top notch universities that have stringent criteria to select their students. A GD is often considered to be a great tool to select prospective candidates in a comparative perspective. To further explain, a GD is a type of methodology that is used by an organization to gauge the personality traits of the candidates and select the members that fit the culture and requirement of the organization or the role. In this group activity, a topic is given to randomly selected candidates who are asked to form a group and discuss on the given topic for about 15 to 20 minutes or sometimes, longer. The evaluation is done by a team of subject experts who closely monitor each of the participants, their body language, their responses and more importantly their role as a part of the team.

What are the personality traits that evaluators look at?

Evaluating a GD is a specialized task that requires keen observation and attention to details. The various personality traits that the evaluators would look at include the following among other things

  • Communication skills – listening and speaking
  • Logical and analytical skills
  • Presence of mind and ability to think spontaneously
  • Assertiveness and flexibility
  • Interpersonal and leadership skills
  • Team building and motivational skills
  • Reasoning ability and creativity

Why are GD considered to be the best evaluative tool?

There can be several reasons why organizations and institutions may prefer to hold a group discussion. Typically, this happens when there are several candidates and limited positions. The GD will help in quick screening of candidates. Also, a group discussion puts the candidate in a seemingly real-time situation and hence, it makes it easier for the institute to gauge the temperament of the candidate along with his conceptual skills. GD basically evaluates how you function as a part of a team and because as a manager or an employee or even as a student, you will always be working in a team, your interaction in a team is an important criterion for selection.

Having read this, you will have a fair idea of what your evaluators will look for in a GD and why a GD is held in the first place. Read through our other posts to get yourself acquainted with the best skills that are needed to outperform others and stand out successful in a Group Discussion.