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Logical and precise, left-brain thinking gave us the Information Age. Now comes the Conceptual Age – ruled by artistry, empathy, and emotion.

By Daniel Pink (as appeared on WIRED, Issue 13.02 – Feb 2005 )

When I was a kid – growing up in a middle-class family, in the middle of America, in the middle of the 1970s – parents dished out a familiar plate of advice to their children: Get good grades, go to college, and pursue a profession that offers a decent standard of living and perhaps a dollop of prestige. If you were good at math and science, become a doctor. If you were better at English and history, become a lawyer. If blood grossed you out and your verbal skills needed work, become an accountant. Later, as computers appeared on desktops and CEOs on magazine covers, the youngsters who were really good at math and science chose high tech, while others flocked to business school, thinking that success was spelled MBA.

Tax attorneys. Radiologists. Financial analysts. Software engineers. Management guru Peter Drucker gave this cadre of professionals an enduring, if somewhat wonky, name: knowledge workers. These are, he wrote, “people who get paid for putting to work what one learns in school rather than for their physical strength or manual skill.” What distinguished members of this group and enabled them to reap society’s greatest rewards, was their “ability to acquire and to apply theoretical and analytic knowledge.” And any of us could join their ranks. All we had to do was study hard and play by the rules of the meritocratic regime. That was the path to professional success and personal fulfillment.

But a funny thing happened while we were pressing our noses to the grindstone: The world changed. The future no longer belongs to people who can reason with computer-like logic, speed, and precision. It belongs to a different kind of person with a different kind of mind. Today – amid the uncertainties of an economy that has gone from boom to bust to blah – there’s a metaphor that explains what’s going on. And it’s right inside our heads.

Scientists have long known that a neurological Mason-Dixon line cleaves our brains into two regions – the left and right hemispheres. But in the last 10 years, thanks in part to advances in functional magnetic resonance imaging, researchers have begun to identify more precisely how the two sides divide responsibilities. The left hemisphere handles sequence, literalness, and analysis. The right hemisphere, meanwhile, takes care of context, emotional expression, and synthesis. Of course, the human brain, with its 100 billion cells forging 1 quadrillion connections, is breathtakingly complex. The two hemispheres work in concert, and we enlist both sides for nearly everything we do. But the structure of our brains can help explain the contours of our times.

Until recently, the abilities that led to success in school, work, and business were characteristic of the left hemisphere. They were the sorts of linear, logical, analytical talents measured by SATs and deployed by CPAs. Today, those capabilities are still necessary. But they’re no longer sufficient. In a world upended by outsourcing, deluged with data, and choked with choices, the abilities that matter most are now closer in spirit to the specialties of the right hemisphere – artistry, empathy, seeing the big picture, and pursuing the transcendent.

Beneath the nervous clatter of our half-completed decade stirs a slow but seismic shift. The Information Age we all prepared for is ending. Rising in its place is what I call the Conceptual Age, an era in which mastery of abilities that we’ve often overlooked and undervalued marks the fault line between who gets ahead and who falls behind.

Read the full story

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Logical and precise, left-brain thinking gave us the Information Age. Now comes the Conceptual Age – ruled by artistry, empathy, and emotion.

By Daniel Pink (as appeared on WIRED, Issue 13.02 – Feb 2005 )

When I was a kid – growing up in a middle-class family, in the middle of America, in the middle of the 1970s – parents dished out a familiar plate of advice to their children: Get good grades, go to college, and pursue a profession that offers a decent standard of living and perhaps a dollop of prestige. If you were good at math and science, become a doctor. If you were better at English and history, become a lawyer. If blood grossed you out and your verbal skills needed work, become an accountant. Later, as computers appeared on desktops and CEOs on magazine covers, the youngsters who were really good at math and science chose high tech, while others flocked to business school, thinking that success was spelled MBA.

Tax attorneys. Radiologists. Financial analysts. Software engineers. Management guru Peter Drucker gave this cadre of professionals an enduring, if somewhat wonky, name: knowledge workers. These are, he wrote, “people who get paid for putting to work what one learns in school rather than for their physical strength or manual skill.” What distinguished members of this group and enabled them to reap society’s greatest rewards, was their “ability to acquire and to apply theoretical and analytic knowledge.” And any of us could join their ranks. All we had to do was study hard and play by the rules of the meritocratic regime. That was the path to professional success and personal fulfillment.

But a funny thing happened while we were pressing our noses to the grindstone: The world changed. The future no longer belongs to people who can reason with computer-like logic, speed, and precision. It belongs to a different kind of person with a different kind of mind. Today – amid the uncertainties of an economy that has gone from boom to bust to blah – there’s a metaphor that explains what’s going on. And it’s right inside our heads.

Scientists have long known that a neurological Mason-Dixon line cleaves our brains into two regions – the left and right hemispheres. But in the last 10 years, thanks in part to advances in functional magnetic resonance imaging, researchers have begun to identify more precisely how the two sides divide responsibilities. The left hemisphere handles sequence, literalness, and analysis. The right hemisphere, meanwhile, takes care of context, emotional expression, and synthesis. Of course, the human brain, with its 100 billion cells forging 1 quadrillion connections, is breathtakingly complex. The two hemispheres work in concert, and we enlist both sides for nearly everything we do. But the structure of our brains can help explain the contours of our times.

Until recently, the abilities that led to success in school, work, and business were characteristic of the left hemisphere. They were the sorts of linear, logical, analytical talents measured by SATs and deployed by CPAs. Today, those capabilities are still necessary. But they’re no longer sufficient. In a world upended by outsourcing, deluged with data, and choked with choices, the abilities that matter most are now closer in spirit to the specialties of the right hemisphere – artistry, empathy, seeing the big picture, and pursuing the transcendent.

Beneath the nervous clatter of our half-completed decade stirs a slow but seismic shift. The Information Age we all prepared for is ending. Rising in its place is what I call the Conceptual Age, an era in which mastery of abilities that we’ve often overlooked and undervalued marks the fault line between who gets ahead and who falls behind.

Read the full story

Thanks to all of you for visiting this blog in the last few months. We have just moved this blog to a separate location4entrepreneur.net. This link will still work, but all the new updates will be posted at the new site. Hope to see you there!!

By Jay Maharjan

Ever second-guess your doctor’s diagnosis or just curious to see if you can learn more on your own? Now you can! There is a cool website called wrongdiagnosis.com. This site is equipped with more than 8,000 different medical conditions – and more cases are added every day. Mark Frauenfelder has done a great job compiling some of the cool sites like this one in his book – Rule the Web.

With the barriers to entry for web presence going down, there are several cool sites emerging every day. Kayak.com has been around for a while, but it is my favorite for finding the best flight deals. Instead of visiting independent travel sites like Expedia and Travelocity, Kayak does all the searching for you and generates the best results.

If you are an online shopper, you will like this one! eComemrce sites always ask if you have a coupon right before checking out and the chances are you never do. Now, you can visit Retailmenot.com and get a temporary coupon code that you can use instantly.

google is your best friend when it comes to finding information. What you may not know is that google has come a long ways and developed some really cool features – like finding out the real time status of the flight with the live picture of the flight path when you type in a flight number in the search bar.

Some of the new web ideas fascinate me. I will start writing about some of the cool web sites that I come across.

Note: We have just moved to a new location. Click here for updated posts

by Chris Consorte

We’ve all heard it: “Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance.” It’s a saying that reaches far beyond the world of business and marketing. However, without a strong marketing plan, you’re likely to be winging it over the year ahead, and no self-respecting businessperson would ever admit to winging it when it comes to running a business.

Like most online businesses, your plan will likely start off with the main objective of driving relevant traffic to your website. Next, you’ll want to convert as many of these visitors into customers. And lastly, you’ll want to do this profitably, thereby keeping ROI in the black.

Speaking of ROI, you’ll need a budget to ensure the “I” exists. While we could spend all-day on budgeting, the only person who knows best how much you can afford to spend on marketing is you. Whatever your method, I always recommend sticking to your guns in making 80 percent of your marketing budget pre-planned, and the remaining 20 percent off-the-cuff, non-planned stuff that may present itself midway through the year. Again, all you need is that magic number so you can stay on course with the marketing roadmap you’re creating.

Now it’s time to put the plan to paper. With objectives and budget in-hand, we get to the fun stuff. The creative tactics available to us, like TV, radio, print, mail, PR, online, and more. You might have noticed I’ve placed online marketing last. That’s because I want to take you out of your comfort zone and get you thinking outside of the box. Not that I want you to abandon what works, just that you’ll need to consider testing other marketing tactics since your objective is, after all, to grow the business this year.

Taking a quick look at TV advertising, companies like Spotrunner.com can get you on-air with a customized spot and super-targeted media plan for roughly $2,500, maybe less. Not exactly a huge monetary boundary, and worth keeping your eyes on.

Radio advertising can be done with even less money, especially when you look at remnant space buyers and planners like Bid4Spots.com or dMarc by Google (yes, Google). Create your spot, pick your areas and within a few days your spots are airing for the lowest prices possible, and all it takes to get you started is $1,000.

Look to MediaBids.com for your print testing campaign — again, a company focused on remnant or unsold inventory and bidding processes. Another $1,000 (or less) gets you into publications that would normally have cost us twice or triple that amount.

Look to MediaBids.com for your print testing campaign — again, a company focused on remnant or unsold inventory and bidding processes. Another $1,000 (or less) gets you into publications that would normally have cost us twice or triple that amount.

Note: We have just moved our blog to a new location. click here for updated posts

By Jay Maharjan on September 24, 2007

As an entrepreneur, publicity can be the key to taking your venture to the next level. I think there’s no such thing as bad publicity, especially if you are a budding start-up. In the digital age, when the buzz can spread like California wildfire, any sort of publicity can create much needed press, traffic to your website, or get the brand recognition.

Traditional PR campaigns still apply in principle, but the medium has changed drastically. Recently, my consulting firm prepared a press release for Montecito Fine Arts College of Design, a distinguished Design College in Los Angeles. Within a week, the story got picked by Forbes.com, Investor’s Business Daily, Yahoo.com among many other high traffic news portals. If your story appears on Forbes.com, by brand association alone, you will get huge return on your few hundred dollar investment.

What makes a good topic for Business Wire?

a. Launch of a company – along with the highlights of the services or/and the products that your company offer
b. News of key executives, directors, or advisors joining your company
c. News of special milestones – e.g. 10 year anniversary events, opening of new offices, acquiring a FORTUNE 500 client, merger & acquisition news
d. Special recognitions – e.g. start up company of the month, Innovation Awards.
e. News of strategic partnerships – Always exploit the opportunity to tie in with the partners with higher brand identity.
f. News of channel, sales partnerships, Value-added Resellers (VARs) – Always make channel partners, VARs feel important and part of your family

It is always good to send press releases as often as possible. The worst that can happen is that your story will not get picked. But, the upside is huge – can very well give your company that much needed boost!