July 2013
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In the work environment, the cocktail of competition, jealousy, fear and ambition can create a lethal explosive that can lead not only to conflict and loss of one's job, but to dissatisfaction, overload, self-hatred and depression.

Unfortunately we have flawed views about competition.  Some believe it creates a healthy stress, is a natural result of ambition and is absolutely necessary for achievement, whilst others deem it deadly and toxic. Competition is not necessarily unhealthy, it can indeed can be motivational, and an impulse for our growth and development.  It is good to have a certain amount of healthy competition in order to extend our limits and expand the wings of personal experience.

It is the unhealthy type of competitive jealousy that we are concerned about here where intentions are fueled with tooth and nail rivalry and enmity.

If one is in competition with another it is because that one is in the pursuit of the same things as the other, for example an engineer is unlikely to be jealous of a doctor.  There may be fear amongst people who have a have a common objective that the other may out-win or have one-upmanship over the other.  It is the fear of losing out while the 'winner takes all' that gives birth to jealousy.

Jealousy is that uneasy, uncomfortable feeling of being of less value – usually derived from a feeling of low self worth.  Thoughts creep in as to why the other might be chosen over me, and I get busy in trying to put the other down and highlighting my own accomplishments.  A boss may even be jealous of a subordinate who looks too promising, and try to thwart his or her ambitions.  A colleague may be jealous of someone else's ability to get along well with others, and try to sabotage their relationships.  All in all, jealousy is a highly toxic and self-defeating companion. 

We may all have been guilty of this negative trait at some point in our life, yet it is those who try to understand it and its devious ways that fare better in life than those who hate and become full of bitter envy.

Ambition can be a great motivator, but a person who is full of jealousy is on a path to self-destruction.  They are always measuring themselves against others and usually feel that they come off worst.  They will never be satisfied or happy or create good relationships because they will perceive everyone as a threat.  Or they will attempt to railroad others into submission.  They will be isolated from the very happiness that they were hoping their success would bring.

Jealousy is like a prison of our own making, and fierce competition with others is like putting ourselves in solitary confinement.  If we really want to thrive in the workplace, co-operation rather than competition is actually the best, the most efficient and most productive approach. 

Self-respect is the key to taming these twin demons of unhealthy competition and jealousy.  When one feels satisfied within oneself, it is still possible to achieve more and to attain goals, but instead the motivation is of wanting to better the self, not wishing to obliterate others!

Instead of feeling jealous or disappointed because someone has gained the promotion that you wanted, try feeling happy for them.  This may seem like a strange alternative approach, but think of how different the atmosphere would be at work if each one was encouraged to encourage and support each other.  In fact each one's success would be the success of the other, the collective and heightened success of the team would reflect the success of the individual.  The boss would also shine in the light of his team's success.

And no doubt some will be thinking… 'well why should I do that, when no-one else will, I will be the loser'.  However taking the initiative for self-responsibility will bring its own rewards.  The law of karma tells us that each one will get what he or she deserves at the end of the day, so our time is much better spent by putting away the knives and working on our own self-improvement.  

It's Time… to let go of jealousy and unhealthy competition.  Learn to be collaborative and not competitive.  Take responsibility for your feelings and allow the law of karma to do its work.
source: Unknown

M Junaid Tahir 

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What's a #Hashtag?

First things first, let's define hashtags. Hashtags mark keywords or topics in Tweets. They are composed of a single word or phrase beginning with a "#" and with no spaces or punctuation. You'll see them around Twitter in a variety of locations—including in trending topics. Clicking on one will lead you to a search featuring Tweets with that same hashtag. Think of it like choosing what a Tweet is filed under. Hashtags were originally created by Twitter users and have become a way to participate in global conversations.

These best practices aim to help you understand how to use this powerful conversational tool.

When to Use a Hashtag?

Conversations collect around hashtags. If you want to start a conversation, introduce a hashtag. If you want to join a conversation already happening on Twitter, find the hashtag that's being used. Hashtags are commonly used at conferences, for television shows, and in discussion of major news events. Tweeting with the right hashtag is a great way to send your message not just to your followers, but to everyone who is tuned into that conversation. Hashtags are most powerful when you use them judiciously. Including more than two in a Tweet is probably overkill, and you only need to tag the most important word that represents the theme of your Tweet.


It's important to centralize your usage around one hashtag, that way your message won't be spread too thin. For example, the South by Southwest Interactive, Film and Music Festival occurs every year and usually dominates a large number of Twitter timelines. A lot of different things are happening at the festival, but the hashtag for the whole event is their known moniker: #SXSW. It's short, effective, and simple. Adding the hashtag to a Tweet gives the online conversation about SXSW a place to happen. Whether attendees are following one another or not, using the #SXSW hashtag gives them another way to connect.

Be #Obvious

Sometimes, the best hashtag is the most obvious one. Take the American version of X-Factor as an example. The producers wanted to differentiate their show from the original British version. They settled on #XFUSA—it was short and unique, different from the British version—perfect, right? A funny thing happened though. Fans were using the non-promoted #xfactor five times more than #xfusa. (See chart below)

Quite a difference, huh? So the producers listened to their fans and changed it up. The show started promoting #xfactor in the second episode, and saw an immediate increase in the Twitter conversation. Sometimes if you let your fans determine your hashtag, you'll end up with even higher levels of engagement. And they'll love you forever.

Here's how the X-Factor would promote their hashtag on-air:

(Note that this image features two hashtags, the one in the middle, and #xfactor above the Fox logo)

Mad-lib Hashtags

But all of this is just the beginning. If you want to get creative with your hashtags, you should. One way to do this is by creating a hashtag that prompts your users to complete a sentence or phrase. The BET show @106andPark does an excellent job of this.

The upside of mad-lib hashtags is that more viewers respond to these hashtags, so you'll maximize engagement. The trade-off is that they require a little more marketing effort, because it takes an additional moment for users to connect them to your show. Remember to market these kinds of hashtags (and all others as well) on-screen or inside your venue when you can.

Live Q&A

Answering questions is an easy, low-friction way to engage with your Twitter audience. And hashtags are the perfect mechanism to source questions and tag your answers. Questions can be answered whenever you have a free moment, as Neil Gaiman did when he was sitting on a plane and had time to kill. Or you can plan ahead and set some time apart, like Justin Timberlake did.

It's often best if these hashtags are specific to the subject of the questions, for example when Twitter hosted a town hall with the White House we used the hashtag #AskObama to make it clear that users' Tweets would be read directly to the President. Unique hashtags can sometimes appear in the list of trending topcis and the discussion can often continue even after the official event is over.

Hashtags in the Wild

Hashtags are a powerful symbol—even off of Twitter. When people see one, they know they need to turn to Twitter to find out what's happening. Showing the Twitter bird at the end of the hashtag will help reinforce the intention and drive the conversation back to Twitter. Take a look at these hashtags in real life:

Photo by Russ Houston, courtesy of Mississippi St. University

Photo by LG Patterson, courtesy of MLB.com

If you find any great examples of hashtags in the wild, on air or in Tweets, be sure to let us know @TwitterMedia so we can include them in this #BestPractice.

ource: Twitter

M Junaid Tahir 

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It's no surprise that eating a heavy meal or enjoying too many refried beans can contribute to gas, but there are a number of nonfood-related habits that can cause gas, abdominal pain and


"We tend to think of foods as being a fantastic answer to gas, but it's usually not," says Mark DeLegge, M.D., spokesperson for the American Gastroenterological Association and professor of medicine and director of the Digestive Disease Center at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. "Oftentimes it ends up being caused by some other habit that the patient has."

Whether your stomach gets bloated after eating a specific food or two or from one of these nonfood habits varies widely from person to person. The trick is figuring out what triggers your symptoms.

"The only way for us to find out is to really stop the habit, completely for a week or two and see if it makes a difference," says DeLegge.

And while symptoms of bloating, belching and passing gas are not typically life threatening, DeLegge says that if they become persistent or if the pain starts to interrupt your quality of life or if you develop nausea, vomiting, fever or have a major change in your bowel movements, you should see your doctor. These symptoms could be a sign of something more serious like irritable bowel syndrome, a partial bowel obstruction, or gastroparesis, says DeLegge.

Read on to learn about the most common nonfood causes of gas.

Eating Too Fast
Sometimes it's not what you eat but how fast you eat it.

"When you're eating or drinking rapidly, food and liquid are going down, but so is air," says DeLegge.

Slowing down is imperative. We're all in a hurry, but DeLegge says to allow 20 to 30 minutes to eat a meal, which should give you enough time to adequately chew your food (ideally until it's pulp like) before swallowing.

Chewing Gum
Chronic gum chewers tend to swallow more air, which can fill the gut.

"If your stomach is full of air, you may belch," says DeLegge. "Or, just like with food, some of that air moves from the stomach quickly into the small intestines and then you can end up withbloating or you may pass it through your rectum with [gas]." 

Drinking Too Many Carbonated Beverages
Those fizzy bubbles that make carbonated drinks appealing are actually made up of gas -- carbon dioxide. Depending on how much and how rapidly you drink, they can result in belching, passing gas or bloating.

Enjoying Excessive Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners
Your sweetener packets can lead to tummy troubles. Just like carbohydrates and foods that are high in sugar, pure sugar and artificial versions get converted to gas quickly as bacteria in the gut try to break them down.

"Sugars, fructose and sucrose sometimes aren't well digested by the bacteria in the gut, and what those bacteria make as their waste product is gas," says DeLegge.

Taking Antibiotics
Antibiotic use can change the bacterial makeup of your gut and result in the overproduction of gas, which causes belching, bloating and abdominal discomfort. The symptoms should resolve once you complete the course of the medication and begin eating regularly, says DeLegge. But if you're on long-term antibiotics, talk to your doctor about switching medications or taking a probiotic, which can help repopulate your gut with good bacteria.

Eating or Drinking Very Hot or Very Cold Foods
In addition to eating slowly, eating your food at room temperature is one of the best things you can do to reduce excess gas or bloating, says DeLegge. When you eat or drink something too hot or too cold, you often try to neutralize it by swallowing air.

"You try to change the temperature yourself. You don't realize you're doing it, but that's what you're doing and you swallow air."

Sensitive Stomach
The roll of the genetic dice may have left you with a stomach that is simply more sensitive to gas.

"You might have the same amount of gas in your gut as I, but you may feel like you're about to explode, and I feel perfectly fine," says DeLegge. "That has to do with the nerves in the gut and the sensation those nerves in the gut send to your brain."

A sensitive gut, along with increased gas, may be signs of irritable bowel syndrome, says DeLegge, in which case you should see your doctor.

Swallowing Too Much Air
While you might consciously breathe through your nose during yoga class, what about when you're not doing sun salutations? Some people tend to breathe through their mouths a lot more than their noses without even thinking about it, says DeLegge.

"While some of that air is going into your lungs, some of it is going down through your esophagus and into your gut."


M Junaid Tahir 

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Nokia has unveiled a new devices they have created called the Nokia Treasure Tag that can be attached to your keys, wallet or other valuables and will alert you when the they are moved a certain distance from your smartphone.

The new Nokia Treasure Tag proximity sensor has been designed to pair with Lumia Windows Phones via NFC and comes with a loop strap allowing you to easily attach it to your bag, keys or anything else you wish to keep track of.

Nokia Treasure Tag

The Nokia Treasure Tag has been designed to be "always on," and includes a battery that will last for around six months of use says Nokia. Nokia is currently updating its Lumia Windows Phones with Bluetooth 4.0 support, and the Treasure Tag will be one of the first smartphone accessories to use the new Low Energy connectivity provided by the Bluetooth 4.0 standard.

Nokia is expected to officially launch their new Nokia Treasure Tag proximity sensor in the coming weeks. Unfortunately no information on pricing  has been released as yet, but as soon as information comes to light we will keep you updated as always.

Source: Verge

Junaid Tahir 

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The term Project Manager is used across several industries that produce products and provide services including construction, architecture and IT to describe someone who has the responsibility for the full lifecycle of a project.

The Project Manager takes the lead from initiation through planning, design, execution, monitoring, controlling to project closure.

Risk Management

Key among the responsibilities of Project Manager jobs is the recognition that risk directly impacts the probability of the project being a success. As a result the Project Manager must be proven to formally and informally measure risks throughout the project lifecycle.

Most issues that arise throughout a project will arise (in one way or another) from risk – which itself arises from uncertainty. Most successful Project Managers are able to minimise risk by implementing and adhering to a strong belief in open communication. This allows team members to express their opinions and voice any concerns they might have as well as unveiling any unstated assumptions.

Project Management Tools

Nowadays there are several different Project Management tools available in order to help Project Managers organise their workforce and tasks. The most commonly used PM tools are now software based for example, Microsoft Project, Primavera, Basecamp, etc. These packages are designed to produce reports and charts in minutes that previously would have taken hours to do by hand.

Roles and Responsibilities of a Project Manager

The key responsibilities of a Project Manager are to ensure successful completion of a project, on time and to budget, however this involves many other stages. Although the role of a PM will vary dramatically from industry to industry and from project to project, several key activities will remain the same, for example a Project Manager is likely to be responsible for:

  • Defining scope
  • Planning scope
  • Activity and resource planning
  • Developing schedules and timescales
  • Cost estimating
  • Budgeting
  • Completing documentation
  • Risk analysis
  • Risk management
  • Progress monitoring
  • Team Management
  • Business Partnering
  • Scalability and portability analysis
  • Quality control

Project Manager Key Skills

A good Project Manager must have a combination of key soft skills. Although Project management training is excellent, without suitable characteristics such as the ability to ask penetrating questions, uncover any unstated assumptions, good conflict resolution and general management skills completing projects successfully will be a huge challenge. A few key soft skills are:

  • Team and individual leadership
  • Oral and written communication
  • Conflict resolution
  • Negotiation
  • Delegation
  • Coaching and mentoring

Helen Bayram

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Did you always know you were going to be an entrepreneur? Well if you can recognize a few of the following positive signs, then chances are you have been on the entrepreneurial path for a while now.

1. You see opportunities everywhere

You can't help yourself: you see the potential in every thing and every person. When you wake up in the morning, you're raring to go because there are ideas to think up, tasks to set into motion, and businesses to be built.

2. You like to scratch your own itch and solve problems

When you see something that could be done better or a massive problem, you're not afraid to step up to the plate to solve it. That usually means creating something that solves other people's problems, too. In turn, these solutions can take on a life of their own and become businesses that make an dent in the industry.

3. You think of something and immediately look for how it could turn into a business

Maybe you like to think up new stories. Or you're great at coming up with delicious recipes. Coding new software is fun for you. All of your imagination is engaged when you're having fun! These ideas that keep coming to you are all fodder for your entrepreneurial side. You look for ways to turn them into viable businesses, or people who can do it for you.

4. You used to sell stuff as a child

You know you're an entrepreneur when you sought experiences to hone your sales skills as a child. Maybe you sold baseball cards like Gary Vaynerchuck or you had a lemonade stand on the corner. Or maybe, like me, you built websites for your parents' friends and started freelancing before you even knew what the term meant. You likely got hooked on earning money for yourself and decided it was a good trait to take on.

5. You think in terms of investments: time and money

With any task you undertake, whether it's watching TV the evenings or mowing the lawn on weekends, you consider the time and money investment and return. If you watch one hour of television, that's one hour less for your business' development. On the other hand, hiring someone to mow your lawn gives you back time to further your business dreams. You're constantly crunching numbers and optimizing how you use the resources you have, so you can get more down the line.

6. You assess other people for leadership qualities

You get that your businesses can become bottlenecked if you're always the one in the middle, so you look for leaders who can help your businesses grow. When you meet someone at a cocktail party, you're looking to see what role they could fulfill at your current or future companies. You're also adamant about training and mentoring people who will one day be able to take your spot, so you can go on to build your next business.

7. You love talking about other people's business success

There's no such thing as bad-mouthing success in your house. You know that you need to look positively upon successful entrepreneurs to become one, and you love to soak up all the "how-to" advice you can glean from people's success stories.

8. You read biographies of your favorite business moguls

You love to get a glimpse at how things went down and how you can apply these lessons to your own life and business. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Warren Buffett — they're all familiar business mentors through their biographies, and you know which traits you want to take on from each of your business heroes.

9. You're persistent to a fault

Giving up is not in your vocabulary. You know that if this idea doesn't pan out, there will be opportunities to kick butt with your next business move. You've tried and failed before, and you know you'll make mistakes, but you take each one in stride because you're in it for the marathon and not the sprint.

10. You care about making the world a better place

You know that business is the vehicle for change on a massive scale, and you're committed to making the world a better place. Starting a business is something you're motivated to do because you believe in what you can offer the world, and you know you're the person to make it happen.


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