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A new campaign is being launched this week at Wyoming driver’s licence offices in hopes of boosting the number of registered donors.
The No. 1 reason people don’t sign up to become donors is because they think they are ineligible. Most non-donors think their age, health conditions or lifestyle prevent them from participating in the program. The campaign aims to dispel these myths.
Robert Austin , the manager of public and professional relations at the Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Bank, stresses that no one should make those judgments.
“Anyone can sign up on the state’s donor registry — regardless of age, health or lifestyle,” Austin said, in a press release. “At the time of death, transplant professionals will evaluate which organs and tissues can actually be used to help others.”
FierceTelecom.com has announced its Rising Stars of Wireline 2013 list, featuring executives from CenturyLink, Lumos Networks, Frontier, Sprint, and Google Fiber. Those who landed on the list are successfully leading their respective companies through tough challenges, including increased competition and landline subscriber loss.
“These individuals are helping their companies conduct major network transitions, launch new service initiatives, and develop network buildout strategies to respond to demands from multisite business customers,” writes FierceTelecom.
Named to the list are: Matt Beal, Craig Drinkhall, Lisa Patridge, Mike Fitz, and Kevin Lo.
Canadian wireless giant Telus has entered into an agreement to acquire Mobilicity for $380 million. If the deal is approved, service to the small carrier’s 250,000 customers will continue without disruption.
“A concern for our customers and employees led us to approach Telus, which has a reputation for a strong customer focus, as evidenced by their industry leading client loyalty,” said Mobilicity president Stewart Lyons in a press release. “I am confident Telus will look after our employees and our customers, mitigating any disruption to their service, while offering the best outcome for all stakeholders.”
The acquisition needs approval from several bodies, including the Competition Bureau, Industry Canada and Mobilicity’s debtholders before it can move forward.
Mobilicity announced that the company was on the auction block back in April, shortly after it withdrew from the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association. Analysts have warned that the sale of the smaller Canadian carriers could negatively impact consumers’ pocketbooks due to decreased competition.
Big news in BlackBerry land this week, as the Canadian smartphone maker hosts its BlackBerry Live showcase conference in Florida.
One of the biggest announcements has been the company’s plans to roll out its signature BlackBerry Messenger service (BBM) to iOS and Android devices. Though some analysts have scratched their heads at the move – after all, BBM is what is keeping some users tethered to their BlackBerry device – CEO Thorsten Heins seems confident it’s the right strategy.
“We have a unique asset and we want to let BBM flourish,” Heins was quoted as saying. “It’s time to bring BBM to a greater audience, no matter what mobile device they carry.”
The company also launched the Q5, which will run on the BB10 operating software and feature a QWERTY keyboard. It will have a 3.1-inch touchscreen and will be targeted to the overseas market.
Android led the way in globally in the first quarter of 2013, claiming nearly three-fourths of the smartphone market, states a recent Gartner analysis. Samsung swung into first place, holding 23.6 percent of the market share, followed by Nokia with 14.8 percent and Apple with 9 percent.
“More than 226 million mobile phones were sold to end users in Asia/Pacific in the first quarter of 2013, which helped the region increase its share of global mobile phones to 53.1 percent year-on-year,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner, in a press release.
“In addition, China saw its mobile phone sales increase 7.5 percent in the first quarter of 2013, and its sales represented 25.7 percent of global mobile phone sales, up nearly 2 percentage points year-on-year.
“The Chinese and local manufacturers have been exemplary at addressing the demands of buyers by offering affordable devices with optimum features such as 2.5G (EDGE) instead of 3G in a smartphone. In the smartphone market, local and Chinese manufacturers are making faster inroads as they account for 29 percent share in the first quarter of 2013, up from 13.2 percent a year ago.”
Over the years our jobs have become increasingly sedentary. It’s not unusual to spend the majority of our day sitting at our desk plowing through paperwork or staring at a computer screen. This behavior has a big impact on our health – researchers have discovered frightening links between sitting in a stationary position and diabetes, heart disease and cancer, to name only a few.
Hitting the gym for a few hours each week isn’t a cure-all – studies show that regular exercise does not mitigate the risks posed by long periods of inactivity, such as sitting. So how can we get up from our desk and get moving, all while staying productive? It’s time to stand up for our health. In this TED talk, business innovator Nilofer Merchant shares a simple concept that could result in big health benefits: The Walking Meeting.
Technology is changing at a startling speed, revolutionizing the way we live and how we do business. As much as it has improved our efficiency at the office, it’s also given another group an upper hand: Criminals.
Phishing scams – where crooks attempt to gather sensitive personal information or access computer systems for nefarious purposes – are skyrocketing around the world. Over 50 percent of Internet users get at least one phishing email per day and as many as 1 in 245 emails are phishing attempts.
While many scams are targeted at consumers, there is increasing evidence that businesses of all sizes are at risk. And there is plenty to lose. Businesses that are swindled suffer direct financial losses, along with serious security breaches involving intellectual property, trade secrets and customer data.
It is not just the little guys who have been duped – victims of widespread phishing attacks include major media outlets such as the BBC and the New York Times. One American law firm lost over $335,000 after hackers gained access to its computer system and transferred cash to Russia.
Even the tech sector isn’t immune despite having workers well-versed in the ways of the digital world. Facebook experienced a major security breach after employees visited a website that installed malware on their laptops. One study showed 27 percent of IT organizations have top executives or privileged users who have been fooled by malicious email attacks.
Would you or your employees be able to accurately spot a phishing email? Email is an important and valuable communication tool, so simply sending all messages to a spam or junk mail folder isn’t a viable solution. That’s why knowing what to look for is essential.
In most attacks, users will receive an email that appears to be from a legitimate source such as a bank, courier company or government agency. Often there will be a sense of urgency, with claims that a transaction may have failed or an important delivery is waiting to be made. While some messages contain spelling mistakes, grammatical errors or irregularities that tip off the user to its validity, others are picture perfect.
Almost always the user will be asked to download an attachment or click through a link to a website where requests are made for personal information or nasty software is installed to infiltrate the machine or network. Once hackers gain control they may utilize the compromised account to send malicious links to others within the organization, since we are more likely to trust an email that appears to come from someone we know.
But email is not the only avenue criminals are taking, as phishing attempts through social media are also on the rise. It is common to receive direct messages on social networks from people you know purporting to have seen a compromising photograph of you on the Internet, with a link for you to check it out. If you click, the crooks gain control of your account, a move that could create a public relations nightmare for any corporate entity. Mobile phishing, where users are sent text messages containing bad links, is also steadily increasing.
The problem is so widespread that security training firms have begun offering corporate phishing training. One popular approach is to set up an education campaign where employees are sent fake phishing emails. If they fall for the scam and click through the link, they are taken to a portal with information on how to prevent breaches and identify malicious emails. Experts say this method of hands-on training creates greater awareness than simply dictating information from the front of a boardroom or warning employees to be vigilant. Users trained in avoiding phishing scams fell for the ruse 42 percent less than those who received no training at all.
With targeted attacks on the rise – businesses with fewer than 250 employees are the fastest growing segment – employee vigilance and ongoing education will continue to be of the utmost importance. As technology advances, so will the attacks. To protect ourselves and our businesses, we need to be prepared. Chances are the con artists will always try to stay one step ahead.
At its core, a leader is defined as a person that guides or directs others. However anyone in an executive role knows being an effective leader is much more complex than the dictionary definition. Simply put, it is no easy task.
In his new book, Paid to Think: A Leader’s Toolkit for Redefining Your Future, author David Goldsmith outlines a dozen core activities every successful leader should practice to add value to their enterprise. When combined, his activities form an approach he refers to as “Enterprise Thinking” – a practical framework that can be used to think constructively and productively.
“The better able a leader is to think through an idea before committing to action, the greater the chances an organization has to achieve higher returns, all while mitigating risk and reducing expense,” writes Goldsmith.
The activities fall under four main categories – strategizing, learning, performing and forecasting. Let’s take a look at how we can use Goldsmith’s advice to our advantage.
Most professionals already spend time strategizing, usually trying to find ways to improve their company to gain a competitive edge. There are ways to secure success by creating strategically superior plans – clearly outline what you are trying to do, iron out your strategy, select your best projects and manage your priorities. Remember it is more important to get the right things done than to get everything done.
When it comes to product creation, Goldsmith suggests the process be organized in a systematic way. Use the funnel method to push the good ideas to the forefront while weeding out the bad. Take the broad criteria, eliminate ideas that won’t work based on alignment or market conditions, and then move forward to develop the remaining ideas.
Other important aspects of strategizing are establishing alliances and leveraging technology to meet today’s needs and reach tomorrow’s growth.
Too often we assume reading an article about a new concept translates into knowledge, which Goldsmith says is not the case.
“Substituting awareness for knowledge is one of the reasons that you get frustrated with yourself or your staff when your ideas don’t go anywhere,” he writes. “It’s also the reason why seemingly well-thought-out plans veer off course or don’t deliver the returns you expect.”
In-depth knowledge is required to execute an idea. We develop this through time, effort and making sure the right people are on our team. Information should come from a variety of sources.
It is important to have awareness of international issues, which will assist in more than marketing products globally – it will help you make better overall decisions. Keeping an eye on your competitors and paying close attention to their successes and failures will also help to reach your organization’s objectives.
To guarantee your team members are performing at their highest levels, you need to set the tone. Develop your personal plans and objectives first, and then formulate organizational plans that align. Educate and inform others around you, make sure the proper team is in place, and follow up with sound coaching and leadership.
Empower those around you by delegating tasks, but always keep your eye on their progress to make sure they are on track. Give plenty of positive feedback and offer career development assistance when needed. Bring innovation to the forefront by keeping an open mind and never dismissing an idea without trying it first. It is crucial that you develop your own innovative mindset ... you will be surprised at how quickly others follow suit.
And just as important as innovation is the ability to sell – not only a product, but yourself as well. First clarify the objective, select the strategy, choose and finalize tactics and execute your idea. Then build momentum and get others on board with your plan. Make sure you continue to pitch your ideas to the right people at the right time.
The decisions made today have an indelible impact on your organization’s future, which makes the ability to anticipate future challenges one of paramount importance. Blend together three factors: Current conditions, cycles, trends and patterns, and technology. If you can spot events that show acceleration in a trend, there’s a good chance you will be able to forecast future events with some accuracy. Always prepare what-if scenarios that outline what will happen if your forecasts are accurate, partially realized or don’t happen at all.
“Becoming an Enterprise Thinker allows you to create the type of life now and in the future that you’ve always dreamt,” Goldsmith concludes. “You can’t get past time back, but you do have another chance tomorrow to get it right. In other words: You can’t fix yesterday; you can only create tomorrow.
“You now have the tools you need to create the tomorrow of your dreams. Now is your time to build tomorrow.”
They used to say any publicity was good publicity, but in the 21st century we know that is not the case. Whether it is a disgruntled customer whose complaint has gone viral on social media, or a full blown scandal making front page headlines, knowing how to properly handle a public relations crisis is essential in today’s business climate.
In this Stanford Graduate School of Business video, political strategist and author Chris Lehane outlines his Ten Commandments of Damage Control to ensure your company comes out on top during a critical situation. It all boils down to credibility and authenticity.
As Lehane explains, damage control doesn’t mean hiding in a corner. It’s important to take the reins and break the story on your own grounds. Speak directly to your core audience with full disclosure, but make sure you do your homework first – the worst thing you can do is fuel the fire.
Schooley Mitchell is the largest independent telecom consulting company in North America, with offices from coast to coast. Our Telecom Consultants deliver telecommunications expertise to companies large and small from all industries. We offer a broad range of services that include analysis of existing and future telecommunications needs, assessment of best alternatives and implementation of cost-effective telecommunications solutions.