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The latest news on Careers from Business Insider

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    Beyond being late and looking like a slob, there are a few things that you should NEVER say during a job interview. 

    Produced by Justin Gmoser

    Follow BI Video: On Facebook

     

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    Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison delivers the keynote address during the annual Oracle OpenWorld conference on September 30, 2014 in San Francisco, California.

    This post by LinkedIn Influencer Jeff Haden originally appeared on LinkedIn.

    In many ways successful people are just like unsuccessful people.

    They come from all sorts of backgrounds, all types of demographics, have all levels of education and experience and expertise....

    In many ways successful people are the same as everyone else.

    Yet look closely and you'll see that in certain key ways, they are very, very different.

    Here are the qualities that set exceptional people apart:

    1. They hate playing politics.

    Successful people can't stand playing politics — and to some degree, people who play politics. They don't care about jockeying for promotions or trying to be "right" in a meeting.

    A successful person's primary focus is on solving difficult problems and accomplishing cool things.

    2. They love when others win.

    Politically motivated people hate when other people earn praise or recognition; they instinctively feel that diminishes the light from their star.

    Others aren't competitive, at least not in that way. They want to be recognized, but their accomplishments don't preclude others from doing great things, too.

    They want everyone else who does something awesome to get recognized, too.

    3. They desperately want to see ideas come to fruition.

    Maybe they love to dream up their own ideas. Or maybe they love to help others build out their ideas. Either way, successful people want to make things happen — new, exciting, crazy, groundbreaking things.

    Successful people don't want to manage what already exists; they want to create what doesn't exist — yet.

    4. They're meta-thinkers.

    mark zuckerberg annoyed

    Successful people spend a lot of time thinking about thinking. They like to think about the best way to think about a goal or challenge or problem. They like to think about how to think differently and develop a different angle or approach or perspective.

    They like to think about thinking, because when they find new ways to think, they find new ways to act.

    5. They prefer to make or enhance the rules.

    Meta-thinkers instinctively evaluate every rule — and look for ways to improve it.

    They prefer to figure things out. They see rules as problems to solve or challenges to overcome.

    6. They believe nothing is sacred.

    Successful people don't say, "Well, that's just the way it is."

    Instead they never feel what is must always be, because perspectives can be shifted. Laws of physics can be broken. Conventional wisdom may not be wisdom at all.

    Even when something huge stands in their way, they know there's a way around it — they just need to figure it out. Changing a paradigm makes new things possible.

    7. They love solving problems.

    Successful people constantly look for problems to solve: sometimes little, sometimes big, sometimes technical, sometimes business- or team-related.

    Drop them into a static situation and they'll create "problems" they can solve.

    8. They're great at self-assessment.

    Why? They constantly evaluate what they do, and then work hard to be even better tomorrow than they are today.

    More than anything, successful people are honest with themselves.

    9. They embrace nontechnical feedback.

    Successful people readily take input from others. And they definitely don't put up barriers to feedback — feedback, especially critical feedback, is just another problem to solve. Becoming better is more important than their egos.

    That's because they don't see feedback as threatening — they see feedback as enlightening. Plus they know they need a lot more feedback on interpersonal skills and personal growth than on technical skills.

    Why? Technical issues are obvious. Because they are constantly self-assessing, successful people know their technical limitations better than anyone else. But what other issues might be standing in their way?

    (If you see what they need to improve on and tell them, you become their hero, because now they can solve a problem they weren't aware of.)

    10. They actively create their future selves.

    In general, successful people realize they are often their own worst enemy. They don't see themselves as controlled by external forces; they think the barrier between what they are and what they want is almost always them.

    So they're constantly trying to be better tomorrow than they are today — even if the people around them wish they would just give it a rest.

    11. They adore taking things off their plates.

    Albert Einstein chalkboard Look at pictures of Albert Einstein and you would think, "Dude never changed clothes?"

    Nope — but he did have a lot of identical clothing. He didn't want to waste brainpower figuring out what to wear every day.

    Successful people have a similar tendency to systematize, not to be anal but to take small and large decisions off their plate so they don't have to waste time thinking about them. So they eat similar things, wear similar clothing, and create daily routines. They organize so they don't have to waste brain share on things that don't really matter.

    But don't confuse creating routines with being compulsive. Successful people will change a routine the moment they see a flaw or an opportunity to make an improvement.

    There's method to the apparent madness — you just have to look for it.

    12. They're awesome at leveraging self-reward.

    Successful people almost always do the things they have to do before they tackle the things they want to do. They use what they want to do as a reward.

    And that means the more things they have to do, the more they'll get done.

    (But that doesn't mean they're great at celebrating success. Because they're constantly trying to improve, a "big win" isn't big — it's simply the outcome of all the things they did to make it come true.)

    13. They believe they're in total control…

    Many people feel luck has a lot to do with success or failure: If they succeed, luck played a part; if they fail, the odds just didn't go their way.

    Successful people feel they have complete control over their success or failure. If they succeed, they caused it. If they fail, they caused it. 

    14. ...so their egos don't suffer when they fail.

    Successful people don't see failure as a blow to the ego. Failure can be fixed. A future self will figure it out.

    Failure is just another problem to solve.

    15. They do everything with intent.

    Like Jason Bourne, successful people don't do "random." They always have a reason for what they do, because they're constantly thinking about why they do what they do.

    They're not afraid. They're not emotionally attached to ideas or ways of doing things.

    They just want to be better and to make the world better.

    And best of all, they know they can — and will.

    More from LinkedIn:

    One Small Way We Can Make A Huge Difference

    The Best Way To Make Tomorrow An Awesome Day

    SEE ALSO: 8 traits the world's most successful people share

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Why we have to give our business partners the power to destroy us


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    Steve Jobs MacBook Air

    In 1997, Steve Jobs returned to Apple after a 12-year absence. The company he had co-founded was running out of cash and close to bankruptcy.

    Jobs held a staff meeting and explained the role passion would play in revitalizing the brand:

    "Apple is not about making boxes for people to get their jobs done, although we do that well. Apple is about something more. Its core value is that we believe that people with passion can change the world for the better."

    The simple phrase — "people with passion can change the world"— holds the secret to entrepreneurial success.

    Nearly a decade later, in 2005, Jobs returned to the theme in his famous commencement speech at Stanford University.

    "You've got to find what you love," Jobs said. "The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

    Related: 7 Reasons Rock Star Entrepreneurs Hit Home Run After Home Run

    Passion is everything. Following your passion is the secret to overcoming the setbacks all entrepreneurs face and it builds resistance against the inevitable naysayers who will question your vision. It's also an essential ingredient in successful communication. If you're not passionate about your ideas, nobody else will be.

    Successful entrepreneurs are abundantly passionate — but not necessarily about the product. They're passionate about their missions. They're passionate about what their products or services mean to the lives of their customers. They're passionate about changing the world or disrupting an established category.

    For example, Jobs wasn't passionate about computer hardware. He was passionate about building tools that would help people unleash their personal creativity.

    When I interviewed Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, we spoke for more than an hour and he didn't bring up the word "coffee."

    "Coffee is the product, but it's not the business we're in," he told me.

    Schultz built an empire from scratch precisely because he wasn't as passionate about the product as he was about "creating a third place between work and home." Anyone can sell a cup of coffee. It takes a true innovator to create an experience.

    "Someone who is passionate will immerse themselves in a field. They want to know everything they can about it," says Maxine Clark, the founder of Build-A-Bear Workshop.

    13785983473_7356599b5b_oIn a recent conversation, Clark told me how much she admired Steve Jobs as someone who followed his passions, wherever they would lead.

    "He was curious. He studied calligraphy, design, art and music, and brought it together for the rest of us," she says.

    Clark is no longer the CEO of the company she started and now invests in early stage companies as well as mentoring entrepreneurs. She says that passion is a fundamental trait she looks for when deciding who to back and who to mentor. She listens carefully to the words people use. For example, if someone just wants "to get rich," and has no passion for a particular idea, Clark will pass.

    "It's not good enough for me. There's no rush to create a business you're not passionate about just to be rich," she says. "It will not work in the long run. You must have your heart in it. The heart is what's going to drive you to make the most money."

    Related: Why You Should Pursue Your Dream Even If Nobody Encourages You

    Leading venture capital investors have echoed Clark's observation. I recently had the opportunity to share the stage at a private venture capital conference with Sequoia Capital's Doug Leone. The legendary investor has backed Google, AirBnB, WhatsApp and hundreds of others companies.

    "What is the one quality all of the successful entrepreneurs share?" an audience member asked.

    "They don't do it for the money," Leone quickly responded. "They're passionate about their mission."

    Their "mission" might be to disrupt a category (Uber, AirBnB). Their mission might be to solve a problem they faced themselves (WhatsApp). Their mission might be to leave the world a better place. But in every case, the "mission" is deeper and more meaningful than the product or service alone.

    In the book "Getting There," Matthew Weiner said he had a passion to be a writer, but his work was rejected so many times, he nearly gave up. But his passion was relentless. He passed one script around for four years. Finally it landed on the deck of an AMC executive and "Mad Men" was born.

    "You can't set a clock for yourself. If you do, you are not a writer," he says. "You should want it so badly that you don't have a choice."

    What do you want badly enough that you "don't have a choice" but to follow it?

    Jobs was obsessed with design, so much so he took a calligraphy course just for the fun of it. It's ultimately what he meant when he said to follow your heart and trust that the dots will connect in the future.

    "This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life," he said.

    Follow your passion and make a difference.

    SEE ALSO: 24 tips that will make you more powerful

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    NOW WATCH: Here's how to form better habits faster


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    soccer kickThis answer originally appeared on Quora as an answer to the question: From the perspective of a CEO, what are the most underrated skills employees lack?

    Auren Hoffman is the CEO of LiveRamp.

    Two skills are incredibly rare: 1. Doing what you say you will do (be reliable); 2. Keeping track of yourself

    Doing what you tell people you will do

    If you can teach your kids a useful skill that will always help them with their career: Teach them to be reliable — to do what they say they will do. (It is harder than it sounds.)

    If you consistently do what you say you will do, you will almost certainly be someone people desire to have on their teams. It is so rare that when you work with someone who is reliable, you never ever want to work with anyone else. You will do anything to keep that person on your team.

    Doing what you say you are going to do starts with setting the right expectations. If you tell someone you will get them the deliverable by Tuesday, you need to understand that it can actually be delivered by Tuesday. If you are good, you are probably factoring in slack in case someone in corporate slows you down or your child gets sick.  

    And so if your boss wants something done Monday and you think it cannot be done until Wednesday, you need to be up-front. Because once a date is agreed to, you're on the hook for accomplishing it.

    On the less-skilled end of the job spectrum, many people cannot commit to showing up to work consistently and on time. There are many external factors in their lives that make even these commitments hard to achieve.  

    So do everything you can to be reliable — because there are very few people that one can rely on.

    Keep track of yourself

    The corollary to being reliable is to make sure you manage yourself.   

    If you can manage all your tasks and deliverables without reminders, you will be treated like the golden child.  

    If your boss or colleagues never need to remind you about a project, deliverable, an answer to an email, etc., they will be able to take a load off their mind and be allowed to focus on other areas. And they will appreciate not having to have the uncomfortable conversation with you ("where is that item that was due yesterday?").

    This takes a lot of hard work and organization, but most people can do it.  You don't need a Ph.D. (or even a college degree) to be on top of everything. You just need to be organized and prioritize its importance. Of course, while most people CAN do this, most people DON'T do this — so doing it will be a huge differentiator for you.

    The underrated skills

    If all you do is be reliable and keep track of yourself, you will be indispensable to any company.

    SEE ALSO: 9 super-successful people share their biggest leadership secrets

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Why we have to give our business partners the power to destroy us


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    napping on desk sleeping nap time computer tired

    Ever have trouble getting to sleep? Or staying asleep? Or you get plenty of shut-eye but you're not refreshed?

    Everyone wants to get better sleep. But sleep trouble is incredibly common.

    And feeling tired the next day isn't the half of it. By not getting enough sleep you're reducing your IQ.

    Via Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School:

    Take an A student used to scoring in the top 10 percent of virtually anything she does. One study showed that if she gets just under seven hours of sleep on weekdays, and about 40 minutes more on weekends, she will begin to score in the bottom 9 percent of non-sleep-deprived individuals.

    And losing "beauty sleep" really does make you less attractive. Seriously.

    Want to be miserable? Being tired actually makes it harder to be happy.

    Via NurtureShock:

    The result is that sleep-deprived people fail to recall pleasant memories, yet recall gloomy memories just fine.

    And if that's not enough, lack of sleep could contribute to an early death.

    Via Night School:

    The results, published in 2007, revealed that participants who obtained two hours less sleep a night than they required nearly doubled their risk of death.

    We need answers before sundown. So I figured I'd call somebody who has them.

    Richard Wiseman is professor of psychology at the University of Hertfordshire and the bestselling author of many books including: Night School: Wake up to the power of sleep.

    On his YouTube channel he has a number of great videos including this one on sleep tips.

    Richard is going to tell you the #1 mistake you make when it comes to sleep, how to take awesome naps, how to get more quality sleep and the surprising secret to why you wake up in the middle of the night. And much more.

    If you're not too tired to keep reading, let's get to it…

    The #1 Mistake That's Screwing Up Your Sleep

    If you're already exhausted, here's the main takeaway you need from this interview:

    Your smartphone is the devil. Your iPad is Lucifer. Your TV cackles with glee when you have insomnia.

    They all give off blue light that your brain mistakes for sunshine. And that tells your grey blob it's time to wake up, not go to bed.

    Stay away from them during the hour before you try to nod off. Here's Richard:

    Ten minutes of a smartphone in front of your nose is about the equivalent of an hour long walk in bright daylight. Imagine going for an hour long walk in bright daylight and then thinking, "Now I'll get some sleep." It ain't going to happen. In the middle of the night you wake up and think, "Aw, I'll just check Twitter, email or Facebook," and, of course, you're being flooded with that blue light. You're not going to be getting back to sleep very easily for the next hour or so.

    So your smartphone is the devil? Okay, not really. In fact, sometimes it can be the best friend your sleep schedule has. Huh?

    When you're dealing with jet lag, I encourage you to indulge in all the blue light device bliss you so urgently crave.

    They can help shift your circadian rhythm forward. Awesome, right? Your phone has a new feature you didn't even know about. Here's Richard:

    You can use that blue light to your advantage, because when you're bathed in blue light you become more alert. To get your circadian rhythm where it needs to be in the new time zone you can stimulate yourself with the blue light from smartphones and iPads.

    (To learn the 4 things astronauts can teach you about a good night's sleep, click here.)

    Okay, modern technology is a double-edged sword. What else are you doing wrong?

    A Good Nightly Routine Is Key

    Just like a good morning routine is incredibly powerful, one before bed is a game changer as well. First step?

    No booze. It seems like it helps but it's actually a big no-no. Here's Richard:

    Drinking alcohol an hour or two before you go to bed is not a good idea. You'll fall asleep quicker, but it keeps you out of deep sleep. In the morning you wake up feeling pretty terrible.

    Richard says thinking positive thoughts before you go to bed is helpful and can promote good dreams. One of the biggest things that causes insomnia is that anxiety about getting to bed.

    When those awful thoughts start running through your head at night, try this little game. Here's Richard:

    Just think about a country or a vegetable or a fruit for each letter of the alphabet. You just slowly work your way through and that can take your mind off negative thoughts.

    Worrying keeping you awake? Richard says to keep a pad and pen by the bed and write those thoughts down to dismiss them. Mindfulness training can help with this too so give meditation a try. (Here's how.)

    Still can't sleep? Get up. Don't accidentally make a Pavlov-style association between your bed and *not* sleeping. Here's Richard:

    The issue is often they're staying in bed awake for ten minutes or more and they start to associate bed with being awake instead of being asleep. Get up, do something which is not stimulating, and then get back to bed.

    (For more science-backed tips on a nightly routine that will bring you amazing sleep, click here.)

    So your winding down ritual is in order. What about naps? (Yes, I know they're amazing.) How can you and I make them *more* amazing?

    How To Nap Like A Pro

    napping, sleep, reading, park, grassDon't go down for more than an hour. 20-30 minutes is great — but even five minutes can give you a big boost. Here's Richard:

    Anything over an hour is probably not a great idea, but twenty or thirty minutes of napping is incredibly good for creativity and focus. Naps can make a massive, massive difference. Even five minutes increases reaction time and focus.

    NASA found pilots who take a 25 minute nap are 35% more alert and twice as focused.

    Via Night School:

    Research by NASA revealed that pilots who take a twenty-five-minute nap in the cockpit – hopefully with a co-pilot taking over the controls – are subsequently 35 per cent more alert, and twice as focused, than their non-napping colleagues.

    NASA found that naps made you smarter — even in the absence of a good night's sleep.

    Via Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep:

    If you can't get in a full night's sleep, you can still improve the ability of your brain to synthesize new information by taking a nap. In a study funded by NASA, David Dinges, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, and a team of researchers found that letting astronauts sleep for as little as fifteen minutes markedly improved their cognitive performance, even when the nap didn't lead to an increase in alertness or the ability to pay more attention to a boring task.

    Worried you won't wake up in time for something important? Richard recommends drinking a cup of coffee immediately before laying down. The caffeine will kick in after about 25 minutes.

    (To learn the 5 scientific secrets to naps that will make you smarter and happier, click here.)

    All this is great for getting some sleep… but what about when you can't stay asleep? Not a problem. Literally.

    Waking Up In The Middle Of The Night Is Natural

    Research shows we evolved to sleep in two distinct phases. So don't worry. Do something for a little while and then head back to bed for round 2. Here's Richard:

    We've evolved to have what's called segregated sleeping. If you wake up in the middle of the night that's perfectly natural. Before electric light people would talk about "first sleep" and "second sleep." In between they'd go and visit their friends or play games. So if you do wake up in the middle of the night, that's fine. Get out of bed for twenty minutes and do something. Don't lay there feeling anxious.

    Is this fragmented sleep bad? Far from it. Bloodwork showed that the time between the two sleeping periods was incredibly relaxing and blissful.

    Via Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep:

    The results showed that the hour humans once spent awake in the middle of the night was probably the most relaxing block of time in their lives. Chemically, the body was in a state equivalent to what you might feel after spending a day at a spa…

    (For more on the science of why we sleep in two chunks, click here.)

    But here's a problem everyone has had: ever sleep for over eight hours and you still feel groggy and awful? Here's why.

    Want To Get Better Sleep? Remember "The 90 Minute Rule"

    Your body goes through sleep cycles of 90 minutes. Wake up in the middle of one and you'll feel lousy no matter how long you've been in bed. So plan your sleep schedule in increments of an hour and a half. Here's Richard:

    Sleep scientists all use the "90-minute rule" which is basically a sleep cycle which is moving from light sleep, to deep sleep to dreaming and repeating that again and again. That cycle is roughly ninety minutes. You're best off waking up at the end of a cycle. Plan your sleep in ninety minute blocks to tell you the best time to be falling asleep. Then you go to bed about ten, twelve minutes before that because that's how long it should be taking you to fall asleep.

    (For more on how to have the best night's sleep of your life, click here.)

    I could use a nap now, frankly. But before any of us nod off, let's round up what Richard had to say so tonight is a restful one. (And we'll get one more tip that can help make sure your nighttime habits don't backfire.) 

    Sum Up

    Here's what Richard had to say about getting more quality zzzzzzzz's:

    • Avoid smartphones and devices at night. But they're great when you're dealing with jet lag.
    • A good nightly routine is key. No alcohol before bed, think positive thoughts and play the alphabet game.
    • Naps are awesome. Just keep them under 30 minutes. Drink a cup of coffee before you lay down.
    • Sleeping in two chunks is natural. Get up and do something for a little while and then go back to bed.
    • Remember the "90 minute rule." Think about when you need to be up and count back in increments of 90 minutes so you wake up sharp.

    Sometimes we're our own worst enemy. We stay up surfing the net or watching Netflix. How can we behave better?

    John Durant offers a piece of advice I follow: forget the morning alarm clock; set an alarm to remind you when to go to bed.

    Via The Paleo Manifesto: Ancient Wisdom for Lifelong Health:

    A useful technique is setting an alarm clock—not to wake up, but to get ready for bed. Set an alarm for an hour before bedtime. When it goes off, finish up any work on the computer, turn off the TV, turn off any unnecessary lights, and start to wind down for the day.

    I wish you great sleep and blissful dreams.

    And as Anthony Burgess once said:

    Laugh and the world laughs with you, snore and you sleep alone.

    Join over 190,000 readers. Get a free weekly update via email here.

    Related posts:

    5 Scientific Secrets To Naps That Will Make You Happier And Smarter

    4 Things Astronauts Can Teach You About A Good Night’s Sleep

    These Six Things Will Bring You A Great Night’s Sleep

     

    SEE ALSO: Researchers discovered a psychological trick that will help you stop procrastinating

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: 11 ways to avoid distractions and stay focused


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    Richard Branson

    According to Forbes, there are about 1,826 billionaires on the planet. Of those, 290 joined the club in 2015.

    That's an increase of about 19%. At that rate the number of billionaires would double every four years, which means that in about 90-94 years, depending on population growth, everyone on the planet would be a billionaire.

    Absurd? Well, yes, of course!

    But the math works only because I'm making three very bad assumptions: that the number of billionaires continues to increase at an all time high historic rate — very unlikely; that a billion dollars in 2110 will be worth a billion dollars today — even more unlikely; and the most absurd assumption, that everyone has the ability to be a billionaire — definitely not!

    So, while I can't promise a formula for getting you into the billionaire's club, what I can tell you is that there are a set of amazingly consistent behaviors and beliefs among billionaires that set them apart.

    While I've only had the opportunity to know or work with six billionaires, I have noticed a distinct set of seven behaviors among these individuals that illustrate in vivid terms how they look at the world differently than most people do. And what's most impressive is that their behaviors and their beliefs walk in lockstep. Not true for most people whose behaviors undermine their beliefs.

    See how close do your behaviors come to each of these seven.

    Oh, and by the way, just so that we're straight; these behaviors don't guarantee a billion dollar valuation, but they are just as important to building success at any scale.

    They're patient.

    warren buffett berkshire hathaway"The stock market is a device for transferring money from the impatient to the patient."– Warren Buffett

    The Oracle of Omaha may be one of the best-known billionaires, but every billionaire I've met seems to have the same uncanny aptitude for being patient and staying the course. You can easily chalk it up to the fact that when you already have billions you can afford to be patient, but I knew some of these folks well before they were millionaires, much less billionaires, and they may have become more patient with time but their belief in waiting out market cycles and sticking to their vision is unwavering.

    They're impervious to rejection.

    "Be prepared for the rejection. No matter how bad it is don't let it overcome you and influence you — keep on going towards what you want to do-no matter what... You need to be as enthusiastic about door number one-hundred as door number one."– John Paul DeJoria

    DeJoria was homeless and actually lived in a car before taking to the streets to sell his first product, shampoo. The billionaires I've met are nearly impervious to rejection. It's an ability to perform the equivalent of radar lock on their vision of the future. They seem to thrive on rejection as an indicator that they are going in the right direction. It's a necessary behavior if you are going to overcome all of the incredibly rational reasons why you can't succeed. Selling shampoo out of your car, really?

    They dream big.

    "If your dreams don't scare you they are too small."– Richard Branson

    Billionaires dare to dream big. Their goal is to change the world not to build wealth. Many people translate this into arrogance. Perhaps it looks that way from a distance. But I can tell you that up close it is a firm and unbending conviction in wanting to, as Steve Jobs once said, put a definitive dent in the universe.

    They don't make excuses.

    "The world wants things done, not excuses. One thing done well is worth a million good excuses."– H. Ross Perot

    When I sold my company to Ross Perot it quickly became evident that there was a clear attitude at Perot Systems of, "Do whatever it takes; and never, ever make excuses for why it can't be done." Unreasonable? Absolutely, but when Ross was at EDS and two of his employees ended up being imprisoned in Iran he didn't make excuses for why he couldn't do anything about it. Instead he took on the nearly impossible task of rescuing them, including a personal trip to Iran that could easily have cost him his own freedom. The rescue succeeded; no excuses needed.

    They don't have regrets.

    Amazon Jeff Bezos"I knew that if I failed I wouldn't regret that, but I knew the one thing I might regret is not trying."— Jeff Bezos

    If you've followed any of my writing you know how I feel about having regrets; there is no place for them, they serve no purpose other than to chew up time and energy that is better applied to the future. Learn your lessons and move on to apply what you've learned. If you're still dwelling on the past you just haven't learned your lesson yet.

    They don't stand still.

    "The biggest risk is not taking any risk ... In a world that's changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks."— Mark Zuckerberg

    This is one of my favorites. While it's attributed here (and often) to Zuckerberg, I heard it first from Peter Drucker. In his book Innovation and Entrepreneurship he makes a solid case for how the only risk in business is the risk of standing still, even though the greatest perceived risk is innovating. We don't want to believe we're standing still, and yet that's the way most of us behave.

    They build the future.

    "You can't just ask customers what they want and then give it to them. By the time you build it, they'll want something new."— Steve Jobs

    This last one is to me the single most important attitude of success at any level. Jobs created the future over an over; first in computers, then in animation, then in music, then in mobile devices. Accept that the future is just a continuation of the past and you've accepted that innovation is simply not possible. You've locked the door to disruption and left the keys under the doormat where you think nobody else will find them. Yeah, that's not such a good idea.

    So, how did you do? Ready to start counting those billions? Let me give you a head start; rather than focus on the billions focus on aligning your beliefs with these seven behaviors and even if the billions don't come the gratification of success will.

    Besides, you could always bank on being around in one hundred years when we'll all be part of the club!

    SEE ALSO: The 25 richest self-made billionaires

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    smile 20s millennialLike the writers of the US Declaration of Independence, we believe that the pursuit of happiness is an unalienable right — and one that’ll improve your productivity, too.

    Here are the 6 best hacks from books on happiness that we’ve ever found.

    You’re probably well aware of Google’s smashing employee benefits package, and in a moment of incredulous jealousy you might even have scoffed at the pampering.

    Among the boons to Googlers are: massages, a bountiful and excellent free canteen, swim-in-place pools, free haircuts, laundry services, and gym equipment — even travel insurance for you and your family.

    Now, take a moment to collect your jaw from the floor and stow your snarls because, as usual, Google’s onto something.

    A team of behavioral economists at Warwick Business School found that all the investments Google makes in heightening employee happiness actually pays off. Through studies involving math problems, chocolate, and comedy videos, they were able to determine that on average, happier people were 12% more productive.

    Multiply 12% across an entire workforce and what you get is exponential advancement. Scale that effect solely to you and the benefits are significant, too. Happier people live longer and healthier lives, make friends more easily, and, in general, live better.

    At Blinkist, we’ve read literally hundreds of great nonfiction books, which means, much as you can stumble upon happiness, we’ve stumbled upon some very sound advice as to how anyone — yep, even you — can be happier. If you’re ready to be happier and you know it, clap your hands. Or just keep reading. 

    1. Keep a gratitude diary to focus on the good times.

    Professor Barbara L. Fredrickson is an expert on positive emotions, so her book "Positivity" is a great place to start our quest to be happier.

    According to Fredrickson, experiencing positive emotions in day-to-day life can have a profound impact on happiness, so we should seek out ways to capture and intensify those feelings.

    Specifically, she advocates striving for a ratio of feeling three positive emotions for every negative one. But how can we hope to predictably and regularly achieve the “be happier” ratio? One of Frederickson’s tried-and-true methods is a gratitude diary.

    A gratitude diary is exactly what it sounds like: a journal where you note down things you’ve felt grateful for recently, such as eating a delicious meal or having great friends to talk to.

    Why does it work? Well, gratitude is a powerful positive emotion. If experienced frequently, even small doses of it lead to a continuous improvement in your general attitude towards life. The role of the diary is to find out which situations repeatedly make you grateful, so you can trigger more gratitude by recreating them.

    For example, if you find through your journalling that talking to your parents about your childhood gives you a feeling of gratitude, you can easily retrigger the same experience by calling them up.

    2. Practice mindfulness — of the positive and the negative.

    Frederickson also touts mindfulness as a great technique to be happier.

    When you’re mindful, you’re willfully and actively perceiving everything you experience. For instance, on your way to work, you might usually let your mind wander to your troubles, like that unpaid gas bill or the stressful project you need to finish. But if you’re mindful, you can instead focus on and savor the singing birds, the spring flowers, and the sunshine, thereby giving you a happiness boost!

    But the benefits of mindfulness don’t stop short at the warm and fuzzy feelings. A dose of mindfulness on negativity can do you good, too. Being mindful of negative feelings allow you to rationally examine and question them. For example, say you’ve just missed the bus and feel a pang of anger.

    Being mindful of your negative feelings can help you ask yourself: did I really need to get so angry at myself just because I missed the bus? Mindful reality checks like this help dissipate most negative emotions, especially our exaggerated reactions to unimportant things like that missed bus. When you consider these minor trials calmly, it’s easy to laugh them off and refocus on the positive.

    To be more mindful, Frederickson recommends meditation. Even if with just a few minutes a day you’ll start to see the difference.

    hug laugh smile

    3. Energize yourself by getting back to the basics.

    Next up for a round of advice-giving on our happiness quest: meet author and blogger, Gretchen Rubin.

    Rubin embarked on a year-long journey to increase her own happiness, a feat whose outcome was her bestselling book "The Happiness Project."

    Rubin found that the key factors to happiness were energy and vitality. Simple as it sounds, feeling physically and mentally fit is enough to significantly ratchet up happiness. And feeling energized makes us want to engage in other activities, like sports or social events, which in turn generate more moments of happiness.

    But how do you generate energy, anyway? The base components are just banal enough to be overlooked: enough sleep, a balanced diet, and physical activity.

    Your happiness hack: a walk. Even a mere ten-minute stroll produces an energy boost, but it’s a good idea to try for 10,000 steps every day. Consider getting yourself a pedometer like Rubin did and start keeping track of your steps. This will help you feel more active because you’re consciously energizing yourself, and as a bonus you get the thrill of fulfilling your step quota each day.

    4. Be generous to your friends for twice the happiness — yours and theirs!

    Friendship is an essential part of a happy life: good friends we can trust, talk to, and have fun with help us navigate every day life’s trials and tribulations with a smile.

    Just as in marital relationships, a big source of happiness in friendships is generosity. During her year in the happiness lab, Rubin found that the surest way to be happy is to focus on helping others feel happier. This doesn’t mean you need to lavish your dearest with expensive gifts or trips or VIP treatments.

    What’s most nourishing to a friendship is helping those you hold dear to continue rising above themselves. Being there for them when they’re in need, and spending time with them will make them much happier than any earthly possession ever could. Perhaps presaging the Marie Kondo tidying craze, Rubin helped several of her friends clean out their closets and felt her happiness doubled—for her friends and for herself.

    “One of the best ways to make yourself happy is to make other people happy. One of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy yourself.” — Gretchen Rubin.

    Trying this approach for yourself is easy and there’s really no limit to what you can do. You might choose to help a friend move house or with organizing a party. Have a skill your friend wants to learn? You could volunteer to work on it together. Whatever you choose, the experience of unstintingly giving is satisfying, both for you and your friend.

    5. Don’t try to buy happiness — but do buy things that make you happy.

    Happiness theorists say that buying a new car or a nice piece of clothing will only make us happy for a short time, and as soon as we’ve gotten used to the new acquisition, we’ll go back to the same level of happiness we had before.

    Rubin, however, found part of the story missing here. True, the satisfaction of a buy may be short-lived, but it’s real, and always involves a positive feeling of growth.

    That’s why she decided that it’d be all right for her to indulge in the occasional modest splurge as long as it provided her with some added value. During her honeymoon, for instance, she treated herself to room service for the first time ever. Another time, she shamelessly bought an expensive food processor, which she has since used to make healthy fruit shakes for herself and her family every day — giving her energy and putting her in a good mood.

    The bottom line here: don’t splash out on useless junk, but don’t hesitate to buy something that you think might add real value to your life. You just might be happier for it. 

    people lost map

    6. Navigate according to a fun map.

    Our final happiness hack comes from Ryan Babineaux’s and John Krumboltz’ book "Fail Fast, Fail Often" which deals with how fear of failure can keep us from attaining our full happiness.

    They also provide a very concrete way for you to squeeze more pleasure out of your daily life: a fun map.

    To make this tool sounds deceptively simple, but the logic checks out. All you need to do is literally jot down all the places you frequent and rate them by level of enjoyment you usually feel in them. Based on the results, try to avoid places where you feel the least happy, like the train or your poorly lit office.

    Instead, seek out activities and places you enjoy, such as parks and museums. If you walk to work, you might assess the various routes you could take to get there. Is there a particularly scenic way you often eschew because it takes five more minutes? Consider investing the extra time: if the aesthetic experience makes you happy, it’s well worth it to go a little out of your way.

    Any way you choose to frame it, whether unalienable right or career booster, relationship strengthener or fountain of youth, being a little happier can only do you good. Try one of the hacks above or try them all and let us know how they worked for you, or let us know what some of your best happiness hacks are in the comments.

    SEE ALSO: Adopting this surprising habit of highly intelligent people can make you look smarter at work

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    While stress causes some people to crumble, mentally strong people continue to thrive in the midst of added tension. 

    In fact, they view adversity as an opportunity for self-growth.

    Whether they're dealing with financial setbacks, health problems, or workplace difficulties, mentally strong people don't let stress drag them down.

    Here are seven ways mentally strong people handle stress effectively:

    1. They accept that stress is part of life.

    While some people waste time and energy thinking things like, "I shouldn't have to deal with this," mentally strong people know that setbacks, problems, and hardships are inevitable.

    When stressful situations arise, they devote their efforts into doing what they can to move forward. Even when they can't change the circumstances, they know they can always take steps to improve their lives.

    2. They keep problems in proper perspective.

    Rather than think a flat tire has the power to ruin their whole day, mentally strong people keep inconveniences in proper perspective. When they're tempted to catastrophize a minor event — such as thinking one mistake could ruin their whole career — they respond by reframing the message they give themselves. They refuse to allow a pessimistic inner monologue to take hold.

    3. They take care of their physical health.

    Mentally strong people recognize the importance of keeping their bodies in smooth operating condition. They recognize they won't be able to combat stress if they're worn out and running on empty. They exercise, get plenty of sleep, and maintain a diet that keeps them keep them healthy.

    4. They choose healthy coping skills.

    While some people turn to alcohol, junk food, or other unhealthy vices to help them escape stress, mentally strong people choose to cope with discomfort in a productive manner. They allow themselves to feel uncomfortable emotions, like anxiety, fear, and sadness, head-on. They use healthy activities, like going for a walk or participating in a hobby, to cope with emotional pain.

    5. They balance social activity with solitude.

    Sometimes, in an attempt to avoid facing problems, people fill their schedules with social activities. Others deal with stress by withdrawing from their friends and family. Mentally strong people, however, strike a good balance. They maintain a healthy social life even when they're stressed, but they also reserve time to be alone with their thoughts.

    6. They acknowledge their choices.

    Stress can cause people to feel like a victim of bad circumstances. But mentally strong people acknowledge that everything they do, from the time they wake up until the time they go to sleep, is a choice. They're willing to say no to things they don't want to do and they accept responsibility for their behavior.

    7. They look for the silver lining.

    Mentally strong people don't necessarily see the world through rose-colored glasses — their outlook is a realistic outlook — but they do look for the silver lining in tough circumstances. They recognize that good things can stem from stressful circumstances. Rather than allowing hardship to turn them into bitter people or helpless victims, they choose to use stressful circumstances to become stronger and better.

    SEE ALSO: Arianna Huffington just adopted a brilliant strategy to help employees take stress-free vacations

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    We all deal with fear of rejection. Jia Jiang did too.

    But he overcame it … thanks to a box of donuts.

    He explains how this happened in his wonderful book, "Rejection Proof: How I Beat Fear and Became Invincible Through 100 Days of Rejection."

    His dream was to be an entrepreneur — and that means a lot of rejection.

    So how could he beat the fear?

    By turning it into a game.

    For 100 days he made ridiculous requests of strangers, expecting to get rejected.

    And get rejected he did. A lot. But he also got a number of unexpected “yes” responses as well:

    • Knocking on a stranger’s door, ball in hand, he asked “Can I play soccer in your backyard?” The response? “Come on in.”
    • He asked a policeman if he could drive his car. The answer? “Do it.”
    • And when he asked workers at Krispy Kreme if they’d make him donuts shaped like the Olympic Rings, they did. For free.

    Here’s his TEDx talk.

    Pretty cool story, huh? I know; you’re not going to run around looking for rejection.

    But by studying Jia’s experiment and the science behind rejection, what can we learn to help us overcome our fears, cope with the inevitable “NO” responses and get what we want in life?

    A lot, actually. Let’s get to it.

    (Please don’t stop reading now. I’ll feel rejected.) 

    Yes, Rejection Is *Very* Powerful

    So let’s say you tried to join the KKK. But they rejected you. Who cares, right? They’re a group of ignorant racists.

    Actually, the research says you might still feel bad:

    …ostracism by despised outgroup members was no less aversive than ostracism by rival outgroup or ingroup members.

    Crazy, huh? Rejection is so powerful it temporarily makes you stupid:

    Rejection can dramatically reduce a person’s IQ and their ability to reason analytically, while increasing their aggression, according to new research. “These are very big effects – the biggest I’ve got in 25 years of research,” says Baumeister. “This tells us a lot about human nature. People really seem designed to get along with others, and when you’re excluded, this has significant effects.”

    How can rejection be so powerful that you feel it even when you’re rejected by a group you don’t even like?

    Studies show your brain doesn’t distinguish between physical pain and emotional pain. To your mind, heartache and a heart attack aren’t all that different:

    In a new study using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), researchers have found that the same brain networks that are activated when you’re burned by hot coffee also light up when you think about a lover who has spurned you. In other words, the brain doesn’t appear to firmly distinguish between physical pain and intense emotional pain.

    In fact, taking Tylenol can ease social pain just like it does physical pain. To your brain, they’re the same.

    There’s a lot you can do to make people like you more. But you can never fully escape rejection. And the more you try to hide from it, the more you shrink your world, and the less chance you have of achieving your dreams.

    (To learn how to get people to like you, click here.)

    So how should you approach situations where you might be rejected? What will make you more likely to succeed and less likely to feel that terrible pain?

    Jia was on to something. And the answer is more fun than you think.

    Make It A Game

    beach, chess game, gen y, millennials, funMost of the platitudes people tell you about dealing with rejection aren’t helpful:

    “Ignore it. Why do you care what they think, anyway?”

    But feeling rejected is so emotional and fundamental, it’s very hard to dismiss it rationally.

    Or they tell you to “face your fears.” Research shows that works. But, hey, that’s scary.

    So what can you do? What Jia did. He made it a game. 

    Reframing things playfully with humor is no small thing. It kills stress.

    Via "Nerve: Poise Under Pressure, Serenity Under Stress, and the Brave New Science of Fear and Cool":

    In tense moments, explains the clinical psychologist Rod Martin… joking actually reformats your perception of a stressor. “Humor is about playing with ideas and concepts,” said Martin, who teaches at the University of Western Ontario. “So whenever we see something as funny; we’re looking at it from a different perspective. When people are trapped in a stressful situation and feeling overwhelmed, they’re stuck in one way of thinking: This is terrible. I’ve got to get out of here. But if you can take a humorous perspective, then by definition you’re looking at it differently — you’re breaking out of that rigid mind-set.”

    When I spoke to a Navy SEAL, an Army Ranger and a Special Forces instructor, they all said that seeing things as a game was key to getting through their arduous training.

    Joe Simpson shattered his leg while descending a mountain. He should have been a dead man. How did he keep going when anyone in their right mind would have just given up and died? He made it a game.

    Via "Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why":

    Simpson was learning what it means to be playful in such circumstances: “A pattern of movements developed after my initial wobbly hops and I meticulously repeated the pattern. Each pattern made up one step across the slope and I began to feel detached from everything around me. I thought of nothing but the patterns.” His struggle had become a dance, and the dance freed him from the terror of what he had to do.

    Reframing stress as a challenge is one of the things Harvard researcher Shawn Achor said leads to success.

    And instead of seeing rejection as a form of social death, Jia saw it as a game he was playing. And it became fun.

    When he heard “no”, he didn’t feel like a loser. Eventually, he felt the way you might after losing at a video game: shrug and try again.

    But what was so inspiring were the times when people joined his game. The workers at Krispy Kreme had fun playing, too.

    (For more tips from a Navy SEAL on how to deal with the toughest challenges, click here.)

    Okay, so you know how to look at situations where rejection is a possibility. But how do you cope with rejection when it happens? It starts with TV and teddy bears… 

    Take Comfort In Friends

    When you look at lots of scientific research, you find some crazy stuff. And exploring rejection, well, that’s what happened to me.

    What helps you deal with rejection? Um… thinking about your favorite TV shows:

    Study 3 demonstrated that thinking about favored (but not non-favored) television programs buffers against drops in self-esteem and mood and against increases in feelings of rejection commonly elicited by threats to close relationships.

    What else? Hugging a teddy bear:

    Overall, the findings suggest that touching a teddy bear mitigates the negative effects of social exclusion to increase prosocial behavior.

    Crazy, right? But before you lose your faith in science, let’s look at the broader pattern and see where it points …

    The answer seems to be relationships. Family, friends — even teddy bears — relieve pain. And as we saw, the brain doesn’t distinguish between the physical and emotional types. So rejection fits in here, too.

    I know what you’re thinking: what does my favorite TV show have to do with relationships?

    TV is a “social surrogate” — your favorite TV shows give you the same feeling of belonging that relationships do:

    These results yield provocative preliminary evidence for the Social Surrogacy Hypothesis. Thinking about valued television programs appears to yield the experience of belongingness.

    It’s hard to underestimate the importance of relationships. When you look at the research, what yes/no question can likely predict whether you will be alive and happy at age 80?

    “Is there someone in your life whom you would feel comfortable phoning at four in the morning to tell your troubles to?”

    University of Pennsylvania happiness expert Martin Seligman explains:

    Is there someone in your life whom you would feel comfortable phoning at four in the morning to tell your troubles to? If your answer is yes, you will likely live longer than someone whose answer is no. For George Vaillant, the Harvard psychiatrist who discovered this fact, the master strength is the capacity to be loved. Conversely, as the social neuroscientist John Cacioppo has argued, loneliness is such a disabling condition that it compels the belief that the pursuit of relationships is a rock-bottom fundamental to human well-being.

    And Jia had that too. He didn’t start his rejection-conquering journey on his own. His incredibly supportive wife told him to quit his job and pursue his passion. (And she was pregnant with their first child when she suggested it.)

    When you face rejection — or any pain for that matter — the answer is to turn to those who do accept you and love you. They are the closest thing to a cure.

    (For more on the science of how to make great friendships, click here.)

    So we know how to approach possible rejection and how to deal with it when it happens. Let’s round this up and learn what steps to take next.

    Sum Up

    Jia and the research have two big insights:

    • Treat situations where we might be rejected as a game. It’s not life-or-death. Reframe stress as a challenge.
    • The cure for rejection is those who love us. You need acceptance. When you don’t get it, it hurts. So turn to where you know you will find it: the people who already love you.

    By making rejection a game, you can try new things without fear. You can strive without worry.

    And what you’ll find is what Jia found: people are often more receptive than you think. Research shows we underestimate how much others are willing to help us.

    Studies demonstrate that the old saying is accurate: you regret most the things you did not do.

    With loved ones around us, rejection doesn’t hurt for very long. Regret, on the other hand, can last a lifetime.

    So make it a game. How else can you end up a winner?

    SEE ALSO: Answer these 20 questions to find out if you're a workaholic

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    When Daymond John was in elementary school in Queens, N.Y., he had to read books four times over to retain what they said.

    Now, at 46, he says he still has to reread them several times — often two to three times each — for the information to really sink in.

    The sharp-dressed "Shark Tank" star and veteran investor/entrepreneur doesn’t habitually reread books as a result of being too busy or distracted the first go-round.

    He chalks it up to being dyslexic, something he only discovered as an adult with the onset of texting and social media.

    “Because I’m dyslexic, I’ve had to read books many times,” he says. “That’s why I focus on reading ones that are high-impact and incredibly useful, full of important lessons that I can apply to my life and business.”

    Related: Shark Tank's Daymond John: 3 Ways to Build a Loyal Social Media Following

    Despite how challenging reading is for the multi-millionaire celebrity business mentor, he forces himself to do it regularly, soaking up pearls of wisdom from contemporary and past thought leaders and leveraging them to up his game.

    We recently caught up with the Infusionsoft and Shopify brand ambassador on the Sony Pictures Culver City, Calif., set of "Shark Tank," where we asked him which books had the greatest impact on his life and career.

    Remaining humble, the FUBU co-founder didn’t seize the opportunity to plug his own books, though he easily could have (other Sharks did). He didn’t even mention them. Instead, and without a moment to prepare ahead of time, he quickly rattled off the names and authors of six books that forever changed him and that he thinks all entrepreneurs will benefit from reading, too.

    “They’re smart choices not only for hopefuls, but for seasoned business pros as well,” he says.

    They are:

    "Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!" by Robert Kiyosaki

    In this step-by-step-style financial literacy classic, multi-millionaire entrepreneur and motivational speaker Robert Kiyosaki shares how he used lessons from two dads — his own fiscally poor father and his best friend’s rich father — to shape his opinions around money and to build his fortune.

    Related: The 7 Books Bill Gates Wants You to Read This Summer



    "Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant" by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne

    The business theorist authors of this data-rich international bestseller lay out an innovative systematic approach to obliterating your competition without competing with them at all.

    Drawing on a decade-long academic study of more than 150 strategic business moves spanning more than 30 industries over 100 years, they detail how to build what they call “blue oceans” — new opportunities in markets that are ripe for disruption. 



    "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

    First appearing in print way back in 1937, Napoleon Hill’s motivating classic is the result of 20 years-worth of research and interviews with more than 40 famous millionaires. 

    "Think and Grow Rich" is indeed rich with the secrets to success from world renowned historic magnates like Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, Alexander Graham Bell, John D. Rockefeller and Theodore Roosevelt. The exceptional life lessons packed within are still relevant today.      

    Related: Shark Tank Star Daymond John Says This Is the Biggest Branding Mistake of All



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    the internship

    What should you do if your summer internship is starting to feel like a dud – if you're bored, doing different work than you were promised or struggling to make ends meet on the low pay? Here are five of the most common ways internships hit the skids and what you can do if it happens to you:

    1. Your internship is turning out to be mostly clerical tasks, but you were expecting more substantive work.

    Some amount of clerical work is normal in most internships, and it's not uncommon for interns to come in expecting to do more glamorous work than what they end up with. The reality is that many internships offer you the chance to get work experience and exposure to your field in exchange for what can be, yes, drudgery. After all, you haven't proven yourself in the work world yet. Ideally, you will be given more interesting work if you excel at those boring tasks and do them cheerfully.

    However, if you were promised types of projects you aren't getting, or if you're just going stir-crazy from too much filing and coffee-fetching, talk with your manager. Say you understand the need to do the work you've been doing, but that you also want to ensure that the summer is a learning experience for you. Add that you're hoping for the opportunity for exposure to more substantive work as well. And if you discussed specific projects during the hiring process, now is the time to mention those. Ask if it's possible to carve out time to learn about and contribute to other projects your team is working on.

    2. You're not getting enough assignments, and you're bored.

    Talk to your manager. Tell her you have a lot of down time, and ask what additional projects you can take on to keep you busy. Some managers take on interns without considering the time investment they'll need to make in generating and overseeing projects for them. You might have one of those types of managers, so ask whether there are longer-term projects you can take on that will keep you busy for a good chunk of time and won't require you to keep checking back for additional work.

    You can also ask if you can offer to help others in the office when you have down time. If you get permission to do that, you might find that others are happy to fill your plate when your manager won't.

    3. You're not getting much feedback or guidance on your work.

    Be clear about what you need! When you're given an assignment that's unclear, ask questions. For example, you could ask if there are samples of similar work that has been done in the past that you could look at or for a clear description of what a successful end product would look like.

    You could also consider having a big-picture conversation with your boss and explain that you're not always sure how to tackle your assignments. You could suggest having a weekly check-in meeting so that you have a set time to talk about what you're working on, ask questions and get feedback.

    4. You're not included in meetings and discussions around the office, and wish you could be part of them.

    In order to keep meetings short and focused, managers will often try to limit participants to a low number, often including only those with a deeper background in the issues being discussed or those with decision-making authority. So it isn't always appropriate to include extra participants – but including observers is another thing. Try framing your request as a desire to sit in and observe, rather than as a participant. For example, you could say: "Would it be possible for me to observe some of the website strategy meetings? I'd love to sit in to get more exposure to that work, just as an observer."

    5. You receive an internship stipend, but it's not even covering your travel to and from work.

    It's not unreasonable to ask for some assistance with expenses. It may or may not be in your team's budget to cover it, but it's not outrageous to inquire about it. Try saying something like this: "I'm finding that my stipend isn't fully covering my expenses getting to and from work each day. Would it be possible to get some assistance with those expenses, so that I don't lose money by coming to work?"

    (One caveat here: It's always better to negotiate this kind of thing before you accept an internship offer. It's usually harder – not impossible, but harder – to change the terms of a job offer once you've already begun to work.)

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    To get a job at Goldman Sachs you've got to know your stuff (having the right alma mater doesn't hurt, either). But financial knowledge alone isn't enough to land you a gig at the firm that recently ranked No. 4 on Universum Global's 2015 World's Most Attractive Employers list.

    Consider: Last year, Goldman hired 8,300 employees out of 270,000 applicants — a 3% success rate.

    To make the cut you'll need to prove you have the skills, the experience, and the motivation to thrive, and you'll also need to prove you're a cultural fit. In other words: You'll need to ace the interview.

    We sifted through reports from Glassdoor to find some of the trickiest, and diciest, interview questions Goldman has to offer. Whether you're applying to be a summer associate or a VP, here are a few questions to master before you walk in the door.

    SEE ALSO: Here are the summer jobs 19 super-successful people had before they were famous

    "If you were an object, what would you be?"— Financial analyst candidate



    "How many square feet of pizza is eaten in the US each year?"— Programmer analyst candidate



    "What is more important, creativity or efficiency?"— Operations analyst candidate



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    Internship programs are now well underway on Wall Street, and the resident office rookies are finding out the truth about their prestigious jobs.

    We've all heard horror stories about sleepless nights at the office and midday root-beer-float runs for senior bankers in the summer heat.

    But what are things really like for this year's crop of summer analysts?

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This animated map shows the largest company by revenue for every state


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    Internship programs are now well underway on Wall Street, and the resident office rookies are finding out the truth about their prestigious jobs.

    We've all heard horror stories about sleepless nights at the office and midday root-beer-float runs for senior bankers in the summer heat.

    But what are things really like for this year's crop of summer analysts?

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This animated map shows the largest company by revenue for every state


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    Life is stressful enough for most of us. Allowing a toxic individual to ravage your immediate environment can cause havoc in your mental well-being, which can lead to physical challenges.

    A bad state of mind not only affects your physical well-being but makes it difficult for you to respond calmly under pressure.

    Ninety percent of top performers are skilled at managing their emotions, so your ability to perform effectively can be affected if you do not adopt strategies that will allow you to deal with toxic people.

    1. Successful people establish boundaries.

    There is a fine line between being friendly and allowing somebody to lead you down a path that jeopardizes your ability to remain effective. Successful people understand this and do not allow the toxic among them to take charge, but rather choose to set effective boundaries.

    2. No one limits their joy.

    How much do the words of those around you affect your state of mind? Successful people have mastered the ability to ensure that the negative remarks of others do not affect their strong sense of accomplishment. Toxic people like to break you down with rude, hurtful comments, and gain satisfaction from watching you fall apart.

    Learn to react less to the opinions of others, especially those you know do not have your well-being at heart.

    3. They have mastered the art of rising above.

    I learned this from John Rampton from Due when he was on stage at TC Disrupt. "By mastering the act of rising above, successful people are able to remain rational and calm in the presence of the irrational and chaotic. They master rising above the rest, no matter what the circumstance," Rampton said.

    4. They are solution-focused.

    Do you spend more time focused on the negative person and how they affect your life than on achieving your goals? If so, then you have a problem. Instead of focusing on the negative, focus on your goals.

    5. They understand the importance of support.

    Reach out to your mentors, chances are, they have experienced what you are going through. There is a good chance that coworkers, team members, even family and friends have useful tips to help you get by. The emotionally intelligent understand how to tap into their resources to get through the challenges of working with toxic people.

    6. They are aware.

    Self-awareness is important, because it involves knowing what it takes to push your buttons in order to prevent it from happening. Lack of emotional control is a great way to empower the toxic people in your life.

    7. They forgive but don't forget.

    Being forgiving comes with being emotionally intelligent. It allows you to remain unburdened by the mistakes of others and to have peace of mind. But being forgiving does not mean forgetting whom you can and cannot trust. It just means you stop wasting mental energy on those you cannot trust.

    8. They store their energy for better opportunities.

    As I have mentioned several times, the toxic thrive on chaos, and will do anything to have the ability to take you down to their level. Learning to understand your limits will help you to stay away from dangerous situations. Choose your battles wisely, and conserve your energy for bigger and better things.

    Final thoughts

    Those we look up to as being the "bigger person" or as being able to conduct themselves in the most challenging of situations do not have a magic solution in their back pockets, but they have worked hard to become emotionally intelligent people. What are some of the challenges you have experienced with toxic people?

    SEE ALSO: It's official: Work is making us miserable

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    meditation

    Job-related stress is unavoidable in any line of work. The effects of too much stress buildup, however, can be detrimental to you and your career.

    The average workweek has increased to about 47 hours, and with that comes increased stress. Workplace stress can have a significant impact on your work performance, quality of work, and relationships with coworkers and superiors.

    Stress expert Kathleen Hall, founder and CEO of The Stress Institute and Mindful Living Network, helps people manage their physical and mental stress. She offers science-backed tips on creating balance and reducing stress.

    Hall says "people are so overbooked, overworked, and overwhelmed they can only remember simple, quick tips."

    To make it easy, she says to remember ACE: Awareness. Choice. Experience.

    Awareness

    "Become aware of your stress triggers," Hall says. "Each person is different, and we respond to different stress triggers."

    It's important to complete this first step and acknowledge the roots of your stress. Hall suggests writing down three situations that bring you the most stress, like deadlines, a relationship, or a job task.

    Choice

    The next step is "choosing one stress of the above stressors that you would like to alleviate," Hall says.

    This will help you segue into the final phase and can provide you with an in-depth look at one of your stress triggers.

    Experience

    Once you have chosen one of your stress triggers, Hall offers four tips (and another acronym) to help you get through it. 

    Women doing yoga

    You should "experience SELF-care," she says.

    1. Serenity: There are multiple ways to create self-serenity, starting with your breathing. 

    "Clear your mind by focusing on your breath,"Hall says. "Inhale to the count of 1-2-3-4, and exhale to 1-2-3-4. This reduces the production of stress hormones."

    A short-term option is downloading an app to help you, perhaps one that plays nature or ocean sounds, Hall says. A long-term solution can be meditation or yoga.

    2. Exercise: "Any form of exercise reduces your stress right away," Hall says. "Go for a short walk or stand up at your desk and do some stretches." 

    3. Love: "Connecting with other people reduces your stress," Hall says. She suggests you go to lunch or spend other time with your coworkers, friends, or neighbors.

    4. Food: Food choice can play a major role in your stress levels. Consuming things like sugar, salt, and alcohol can increase your stress levels, she says.

    Hall advises eating foods rich in vitamin B6, such as bananas, nuts, turkey, or tuna. She also recommends opting for whole grains, blueberries, and oatmeal.

    SEE ALSO: Researchers discovered a psychological trick that will help you stop procrastinating

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    A lot of conversations about work revolve around how much you do or don’t like your current job. There’s a reason why people usually feel one extreme or another — and it has a lot to do with whether your position fits your personality. And folks, we’re talking about more than Type A versus Type B here.

    Whether you’re just starting out in the working world or you’re still unsure as to what your ideal career is after years in the same industry, this flowchart will guide you in the right direction. The best part? There are specific job suggestions if you’re still unsure of what you should do.

    truity graphic

    SEE ALSO: A psychologist says these personality types are most likely to clash at work

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    Working Late Messy Desk

    Picture this. I was at a networking event last winter. It was cold outside, but quite warm in the room. Most of us balanced winter coats and heavy bags. I made small talk with a few other people, when a new guy approached the group.

    "Damn, you guys are carrying a ton of sh*t," he said. "You know, you can check your sh*t for free at the coat check."

    Boom! Instant credibility suck. I get that he was trying to help us, but none of us paid him any mind after that introduction.

    It's not really just that the guy swore; most of us are pretty immune to that these days. It's that three of his first 22 words were curses (assuming you count "damn" as a curse). That's just lazy, as if he couldn't be bothered to come up with better descriptions of all the things we were carrying. Instead, he went with the barnyard default, and that made him seem unserious and unprofessional.

    (Just off the top of my head, since I'm sure some of you are about to ask what he could have called the things we carried instead: coats, bags, laptops, stuff, purses, briefcases, jackets, coats, gear, kit, pouch, totes, baggage, portage, luggage, junk, tunics-heck, call my a bag a man-purse, if you want to at least score a C-minus joke).

    The truth is, nobody's perfect. We're all prone to semi-conscious verbal foul-ups that make us look totally unprofessional. That's why we all need a reminder now and then. Here are 10 examples of similar things to avoid.

    1. Lazy profanity

    OK, this one really is at the top of the list. Again, it's not the profanity itself (although that often doesn't help). It's the laziness. If someone constantly uses the F-word as an all-purpose adjective, it makes you wonder whether they're equally uncreative and slothful in everything they do.

    meeting

    2. Lateness

    I must admit this is a tendency I've had to work hard to combat in my own life. The phrase "Murphy Standard Time" would not be met with blank stares by some of my friends and family. Yet I've learned that being on time is a matter of respect. Show up when you say you will, and you send a message that you're professional enough to care.

    3. Leering

    We're all human. We're mammals. We notice alluring members of whatever gender we're biologically predisposed to be attracted to. Yet, that same humanity also means we should have the self-control to keep the "up-and-down look" under control, so to speak. Eyes up here, my friend, or you'll look like a creepy amateur.

    4. Pollyannaishness

    I've always been a bit bothered by the fact that the word "Pollyannaish" suggests the concept of having too much unrealistic optimism. Check out the 1913 book if you don't understand why. Still, when, after a disaster, a colleague or a vendor insists that things are absolutely fine-while simple common-sense tells you they're not-it undermines their professionalism.

    5. Flightiness

    To be flighty is to be fickle and irresponsible. Tell someone you'll be at a certain place, or that you'll accomplish a certain thing-and then never do it? Sorry, you're flighty.

    6. Disorganization

    (Anyone who gets more than 1,000 emails a day probably falls into this category.) As most of us who run businesses understand, clients and customers expect you to reply quickly. They want you to be able to talk about their situations (seemingly) off-the-cuff. If you aren't in control of your own situation, they'll wonder how you can possibly be in control of theirs.

    women outside talking

    7. Inarticulateness

    This one is like, so like, obvious — and yet a lot of people like, they don't really, like, get it. And that just, like, totally makes them seem like — well, not really professional, because they, like, can't even get to the point of what they want to say and like, make it clear and stuff.

    'Nuff said. I'd actually throw bad grammar into this category as well-although with the caveat that we've all known some very smart, professional people whose language simply betrayed their lack of formal education, or whose first tongue wasn't ours. (Seriously, if this column were written in French or Spanish, we'd all have a good laugh at my grammar.)

    8. Secrecy

    Sure, we all have private lives, but most of the time our businesses don't truly involve them. If you're hiding important information from employees or clients, you're not doing much for your reputation as a leader, and you're probably making them wonder whether they can trust you.

    9. Overpromising

    A really brilliant salesperson once told me her art of selling was about "making the maximum promise you can, consistent with your ability to deliver." Entrepreneurs often push the envelope on this, but the key is to make sure you're confident you will eventually be able to make good on your promises.

    10. Cheating and lying

    These two are obvious. As President George W. Bush once tried to say, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."

    SEE ALSO: 6 short stories that will make you smarter about business

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    leader

    When I started my first company at the age of 25, I did not consider myself a leader. I was just a guy who needed to serve my clients.

    But soon I was hiring people and had to figure out on my own how to be a good boss and business person. That was 25 years ago, before Ted and the Internet made expert learning fast and accessible.

    Today, the most amazing experts are available in powerful short bursts that will be sure to increase your leadership capabilities quickly.

    Each of these talks gives you a different — but important — perspective on leadership with immediate actions you can use today. Just tune in and be inspired by these seven short and amazing talks.

    1. Everyday Leadership by Drew Dudley

    Do you understand the daily impact of your actions on those around you? Dudley's short story of his "lollipop moment" will help you put leadership in the proper perspective. He'll help you become aware of the little moments that define leaders in big ways.

    2. How to Start a Movement by Derek Sivers

    In this 3-minute talk, Sivers demystifies how one person can inspire a crowd of followers. Ironically, the instigator is rarely the driver of the movement. Watch and learn the key factor that really getting things moving.

    3. Learning from Leadership's Missing Manual by Fields Wicker-Miurin

    Wicker-Miurin eloquently shares the stories of 3 seemingly ordinary people who are now unexpectedly changing the world in big ways. The lessons from their improbable rise will inspire you to think of your own leadership value in terms of the legacy you'll leave upon your community.

    4. What It Takes to Be a Great Leader by Roselinde Torres

    Torres quickly points out the failings of 20th century institutional leadership training programs still dominant today. Instead she provides the three most important questions each person must ask if they want to be a forward thinking leader in the 21st century.

    5. Why It's Time to Forget the Pecking Order at Work by Margaret Heffernan

    Heffernan quickly dispels myths about who are the best leaders and the role that leaders take in successful teams. She shares the single most important act that will insure every team's success. She'll teach you how to build "social capital" and spend it wisely.

    6. Listen, Learn... then Lead by Stanley McChrystal

    If there is one thing 4-star General McChrystal understands about leadership it's how to manage change. He has dealt with changes in warfare, technology, and even military culture. Yet, he still managed to rise to top of the ranks and keep our troops safe and effective. Learn from the former commander about how to stay agile among the rigid and the unexpected.

    7. Lead Like the Great Conductors by Italy Talgam

    Through videos of top conductors like Riccardo Muti and Leonard Bernstein, Talgam visually and musically illustrates the power and the subtlety of leadership and control. This fascinating video will show you how even the smallest expression can have the biggest impact. Even more, you'll learn the best leadership happens when the leader hardly leads at all.

    SEE ALSO: This fascinating TED talk shows why you have no idea what will make you happy in 10 years

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    Indra K. Nooyi

    What do successful CEOs and entrepreneurs do about time management, leadership and work/life balance?

    Whether they hail from Silicon Valley, the Fortune 500 or are startup founders, the following day-to-day habits all have a common theme: busy leaders credit them as effective secrets to their success - and as real helps in avoiding or at least minimizing stress.

    Here are some of the top tips from top CEOs:

    1. Color-code every minute.

    Patrick Gelsinger, CEO of software company VMWare, faithfully codes his schedule by color. He marks meetings blue when they're with partners or customers, red if they're with investors or media, and yellow for strategy sessions. An intern adds up how his time use compares to contemporary studies on executive time management.

    Related: 20 Productivity Apps to Keep You On Task (Infographic)

    2. Don't work while flying.

    Phil Libin, chief executive of the note-taking and archiving software Evernote, says he spells himself by not working while in the air anymore.

    "Like everyone else, I used to just work on airplanes. I'd use that as a time to catch up on things," he said during a video interview. "And I stopped. I basically said when I'm on a plane, I won't work. I'll read, I'll play video games, I'll sleep, I'll watch movies, but I don't work. It makes me look forward to flying. I can get off a long flight, and actually be kind of relaxed."

    BestAndroidApps put together a cool list of apps to use in a plane if you choose not to work there.

    3. Have employees put a response deadline in their emails.

    Katia Beauchamp, co-founder of the wildly popular subscription beauty-sample service Birchbox, told Lifehacker that one of her favorite time-saving strategies is to get colleagues to include deadlines for even the simplest of questions.

    "I insist people on the Birchbox team indicate when they need a response in all emails," she told Lifehacker. "It makes prioritization so much faster."

    Related: 5 Bad Email Habits That Waste Your Time

    4. Write letters to employees' parents.

    PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi write letters to the fathers and mothers of all of her direct reports. She most often tells them how pride her mother and family in India were when Nooyi became CEO. She thanks them for their child.

    Nooyi said has expanded her letter writing habit to include the top 200 people in the company, as well as some new recruits. That helped her convince at least one to come onboard.

    5. Use the 'Yesterbox.'

    David Nazaryan, owner one of the nation's top marketing companies, DMG, uses the Yesterbox technique to navigate the 500-plus emails he receives each day. He deals with email from yesterday today. That way he starts the day knowing exactly how many messages he has to answer and feels a sense of accomplishment when finished.

    6. Put notes in your address book.

    When Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson puts a new name in his address book he makes a note about where he met that person and what they talked about. If he needs to reach out later he can reference their specific discussion.

    Dickerson has a system for everything from how he manages his email accounts to snagging business cards at conventions. He is such a big fan of systematizing entrepreneurial tasks that he teaches a class on it at his company. 

    "It doesn't matter what your system is, you just have to have a system," he says.

    SEE ALSO: 3 experiments suggest men are threatened by this type of boss

    Join the conversation about this story »

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