Work-Life Strategies & Solutions

On the Evolution of Work Systems in the Digital Economy

Category Archives: Observations

Special Feature: Everything You Need to Know About Software Patent Applications

By UpCounsel Contributor

Edited by Lynn Patra 

You have a great new idea for what you hope is the next big app. You did your research and you could not find anything out there that is even remotely similar. You have brought together investors and are working with a team of developers and now you are wondering whether you can protect your idea by securing a patent. But is it patentable? Can you patent an idea for software? Read more of this post

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Designing Technology for the Aging Population [Infographic]

The subject of adapting technology to facilitate ease of use and play a supportive function in older adults’ daily activities is an important one, especially given the large numbers of aging adults in the population. That’s why I found the following infographic so informative. This infographic was submitted by Circa Interactive and created by USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology under the Master of Arts in Gerontology (MAG) & Master of Aging Services Management (MASM) online program.

Via gerontology.usc.edu:

While many older Americans use technology, it’s rarely designed with them in mind. Discover what people are predicting about the adoption of technology by Americans over age 65, barriers to usage, and strategies to engage seniors with technology.

Read more of this post

Why I’m Not a “Social Justice” Warrior: What About Non-Drinkers’ and Short Peoples’ Pay and Representation in the Workforce?

Previously, I mentioned declining to post certain third-party submitted content at this blog. I’m sure it raises eyebrows whenever I reject content promoting, say, women in the workplace. So I thought it best to explain why I’m not making noise about race and gender instead of leaving this open to speculation.

Instances of racism and sexism exist, however there are plenty of other biases and experiences of “oppression” that never seem to occur  to most people just because they’re riled up, fixated, and obsessed about two issues when it comes to the work realm (and it’s two because there isn’t much talk about LGBT pay and representation comparatively speaking). Did you know that differences in earnings, claims of bias and discrimination, and/or experiences of “oppression” exist when it comes to:

(1.) tall vs. short people, Read more of this post

My Quora Answer: Do you believe an American’s life has become too overwhelmed by politics…? by Lynn Patra

In my previous post, I mentioned preferring to live and work at my current location (Redding, California) and being turned off at the prospect of living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area. The reason for my preference is, having already sampled life in more metropolitan, urban regions of California firsthand (through work and school), I am sick and tired of the lack of self control, the deafening, pushy political activism, and the presumption that many have, while trying to force others (uninvited) to talk about politics, that everyone else shares the same opinions and values that you do.

As I state in my Quora answer below, this type of behavior, exemplified by denizens of those regions, extends to the online world, including sites where people are supposed to behave more professionally, like LinkedIn. So, in a way, there’s no getting away from the verbal diarrhea. However, I don’t want this to become a part of the work culture I join. The original Quora question I’m answering here is “Do you believe an American’s life has become too overwhelmed by politics, and therefore, they have a more divided country than when culture was more of a focus or even more mundane aspects of life?Read more of this post

Back home after the Carr Fire

Well, I am home and, as it turned out, our home is fine. As I indicated in my previous post, I very much want to be a part of the Redding, California community and contribute to disaster relief and resettlement efforts. Having said that, I’ve been engaged in volunteer work.

I’m not sure how negatively a disaster of this scale will impact employment prospects here, however I’m still very much interested in finding employment in the Redding, California area (so that I can stay here). Yet, I know this sounds crazy to some people but no, I don’t want to live and work in the San Francisco Bay Area… and I can’t seem to say that often enough for all the incredulous people out there but I really don’t. My next post will make it more apparent why.

Here, I’ll leave my readers with images I’ve taken after the Carr Fire hit my area, along with a synopsis of the damage sustained, quoting from my Quora blog entry: Read more of this post

Big Data and the Psychologist’s Role on the Analytical Team [Infographic]

Having a strong interest in how psychologists are invaluable in various roles and industries, I found the following infographic which was submitted by Circa Interactive both interesting and informative. Why are psychologists valuable when it comes to analyzing big data? This infographic answers that very question with a prediction, description of how big data impacts psychology itself, explaining big data’s significance, and providing real world examples of the intersection between big data and psychology.

Via USC Dornsife Read more of this post

My Quora Answer: How has the Whiskeytown Carr fire in the Redding, California area impacted you?

Those of you who’re observant and have kept up with this blog for awhile might’ve noticed that I’ve removed a number of posts submitted by a third party with whom I was partnered with for a time. I’d intended to explain why these have disappeared and, further, why I reject certain content. However, this must wait for another time. I WILL explain the recent disappearance of content when I’m good and ready however.

For now though, I just want readers to know that my life has been a bit upended. Some of you may have heard about the Whiskeytown Carr fire going on in northern California. For safety reasons, I left the area and have been waiting to see how this disaster pans out – something I understand could take weeks. That, and I have some other related matters to sort out. So I’ll keep my own blogging light for awhile.

Here is my statement about this event in How has the Whiskeytown Carr fire in the Redding, California area impacted you? by Lynn Patra:

Like many others who were affected by this, I’ll be holding my breath for the rest of this week, at least, while awaiting final news about what’s happened to our home and the entire region. The fire doubled in size since last night to 80,906 acres now. See Live updates: Carr Fire tops 80,000 acres, threatens rural homes near Redding as temperatures ramp up. And I’ll admit that I’m at a loss for what to do next if there’s nothing to return to.

Household members have floated some alternative plans around. And I know many would think I’m insane not to embrace the prospect of moving south to the more metropolitan regions, which seem like paradise to so many. However, it is what it is with me.

I like the people and the community in the Redding area and, if given the chance – something to return to, I know they’ll need help rebuilding and getting people back to their feet again. And I’d want to be a part of that.

Special Feature: 8 Ways to Stop Over-Servicing Your Clients

The following thoughtful article for business owners covers recognizing the issue of over-servicing clients and steps you can take to address this problem. In 8 Ways to Stop Over-Servicing Your Clients, Brenda Barron at Clicktime.com writes:

Over-servicing a client happens on many occasions. More often than not, we’re talking about a longtime client who’s become friendly with your company and occasionally asks for additional tasks to be completed. Other times it can be about keeping a valuable name brand happy and bending over backwards to keep them. Unfortunately, this is a drain on your company’s resources, and it could be forcing you to use far too many labor hours. In fact, several small tasks can turn into a significant amount of time if you’re not careful, and over-servicing costs can easily reach 500K/year.

That’s why it’s important to check to see if your firm is over-servicing any of your clients. After you’ve identified some of the clients with over-servicing problems, you can make the transition easier for your employees. No one wants to tell a friendly client that you can’t complete work for them, and sometimes it’s even harder to raise rates. But in order to keep your costs low, it must be done.

Read more at 8 Ways to Stop Over-Servicing Your Clients

Special Feature: How to Find the Right Internship — and Make It Work for You

For those finishing up college and planning what to do next, this might be the article for you! In fact, if I had this knowledge way back when I was a college graduate, my life might’ve played out differently. So, I’m sharing this with you because this article, How to Find the Right Internship – and Make It Work for You, written by Clicktime.com administration is that invaluable.

You need experience to get a good job, but you need a job to get good experience. What’s a college student to do?

This is the dilemma of undergrads everywhere. Fortunately, there’s a solution: Internships.

According to a recent survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 95 percent of employers want to hire people with experience. This includes new college grads.

Since college students most likely do not have much in the way of real-world experience to offer an employer, an internship might be the best way to obtain that experience. So, think carefully before you take that summer position waiting tables, and consider an internship in the field you want to enter instead. (Especially one that pays a stipend!)

Once you’ve landed an internship, focus on getting it right. Success here can mean a reference, recommendation letter, or even a permanent job.

Read more at How to Find the Right Internship – and Make It Work for You

A History of Projections About the Future of Work [Infographic]

Now the following infographic is very interesting as it illustrates various projections (both optimistic and pessimistic) about ways in which technological advancement would affect our lives. In doing so, the creators of this infographic argue that many of these have not come to pass. With that said, there are various points that you might agree and disagree with. Personally, I don’t think conceiving of public education as a “protracted imprisonment” is too far off the mark. Ha!

However, take a look at this and let me know what you think! Read more of this post

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