5 Reasons Why Drinking Lots of Coffee at the Office is the Best Way to Excel at Your Job

Coffee at the office, Coffee Break

Ever wondered how the top professionals get so much done? From the likes of Donald Trump, to Elon Musk, to Oprah Winfrey, to Sir Richard Branson. What do they all have in common? This article is going to explore exactly how you can be like these leaders and excel at your job.

So what is the link between these people? That’s right, it’s coffee.

All of the best and most successful people and heroes of yours (for example, those listed above… Make America Productive Again?) all drink copious amounts of coffee. When Trump, everyone’s favourite president even raves about it in his social media feed. A man of such pull, prowess and professionalism, with such a large social following says it, you just know that it’s something great.

Better yet, because “covfefe” has been mentioned, I’m sure you’re going to see a lot more coffee shops sprouting up all over the place. Because if there is anything that we need more of, its coffee shops. It’s even believed that in some neighbourhoods, there are as little as one coffee shop on each corner. This is not nearly acceptable. Thankfully, you’ll likely be seeing more of these much sought after Java joints popping up all around you. Especially now that everyone around you, and hopefully yourself, want to excel at your job.

Finally, you can say goodbye to those dingy and once thought ‘trendy’ bars, being replaced by a Coffee Bean or a Starbucks. Because who of us don’t want a pumpkin spice, extra triple shot espresso with a flake, cream, sprinkles AND professional successes?

Or perhaps that local record store. The one that only sells records and NOT coffee. That spot will be replaced by a Pret A Manger, a Coffee Club or a Gloria Jeans. And don’t get me started about those hole-in-the-wall clothing shops (more like hole-in-the-way, am I right?) that only sell the latest fashions. That, my friend will turn into the next franchise that we need… Covfefe Club.

Trump Covfefe Tweet
Image: Trump Covfefe Tweet

So given that all the best people drink coffee, here are the 5 reasons why drinking lots of coffee at the office is the absolute best way to excel at your job. Not only that, it’ll have you out perform your colleagues in every way imaginable.

Being more alert and always doing something

Being a creative person or living creatively (whatever that means) can often times be difficult to maintain. Especially if your job isn’t necessarily a creative one. So in order to achieve your best creative works, drink as many cups of coffee as possible.

In doing so has been proven to be an excellent way to stay alert and active. Allowing you to capitalise on all of that wasted time between mundane tasks. For example, if you’re on the train home, learn to juggle. If you’re making dinner, also make origami. Or if you find yourself with a spare 20 minutes, write the next lyrical masterpiece. Think Jimmy Page wanted to excel at his job? Just look at Stairway to Heaven.

At the very least, is it any surprise that some of the best literary works are done by those writers and authors who indulge in the covfefe arts? I think not.

You’ll never sleep

Having 8-12 coffees in a day was once considered a bad thing. These so-called health professionals said that it’ll keep you up all night and force stunted sleep patterns. However, what they fail to mention is, the more coffee, the more time you’ve got to get stuff done. Especially when you get the intern to make however many coffee’s you need throughout the day.

The saying “there isn’t enough time in the day” won’t apply to you because you’ll be ahead of the curve having found a foolproof way to excel at your job.

Studies show that when drinking large amounts of coffee, one struggles to sleep. Not only can you no longer sleep at your desk, it’ll allow you to utilise the wasted time between 10pm and 6am for more work! Doing this can make you achieve more by getting more work done, showing your boss you’re a “go-getter” and even allowing you to have more free time. Even better, if you want to become something of a Lothario, drink coffee and go out at night. Keep up the good work by having a coffee liqueur with some other professionals who value efficiency. Since you have work in the morning, it’s the best time to have a social life.

Prolongs life

It’s true that drinking lots of coffee lets you live longer. Who of us doesn’t want to live forever?

Because you’re drinking so much coffee, you can now work for longer. Being able to capitalise on all of those years sitting around at age 100, you can now earn money, drink lots of coffee and continue to live forever!

Coffee Work - Soure: negativespace.co
Image: Coffee Work, negativespace.co

The most creative drink coffee

Need more of a reason to indulge yourself in the art of coffee drinking? Well, look no further than Sweden.

Sweden? Yep, that’s right , Sweden.

The Swedes are by far the biggest coffee drinkers in the world. Making drinking coffee more of a cultural phenomena than Cuban baseball players. If you’re struggling to find the link between the Swedes and creativity, then here it is. Swedish people are so creative and forward thinking, that they hate their two best exports… Abba and Ikea. You just know that they know what they’re doing, excelling at everything they touch.

Beyond this, all the best writers, creatives, designers and entrepreneurs drink lots and lots of coffee.

It’s true. Ever seen the show Seinfeld? All they did was drink cup upon cup of coffee and what do they have to show for it? Jerry was a successful stand-up comedian, Elaine grew to success in business and even George managed to pull himself up to the highest rungs of society. Despite the fact that George was possibly the worst ever character on television. Constantly being handed things he didn’t deserve, achieving successes he didn’t earn and receiving chance after chance, but thats another thought.

Why? Because of constant coffee drinking.

Image: Seinfeld Monks, RantNOW
Image: Seinfeld Monks, RantNOW

Enhances workflow

When you’re at work it can often be difficult to get much work done when you’re always being called into meetings. If you’re a specialist in your field, then it’s even worse. All the time you’re being asked your opinion and being spoken to.

Well, when you drink lots of coffee, nobody wants to talk to you. Problem solved.

Meetings are finished faster, you don’t get bothered at your desk, never summoned off to meet with a client. You’re free to go about your business and do work. Whether it’s due to the coffee breath, stained teeth or the twitching, you’ll always be left alone. From this, productivity and efficiency is born.

In Summary

Coffee is a wonder drug. So much that if you drink it, it just might give you super powers. Super powers to excel at your job. Giving you the strength to power through your work, be the most creative person in the office and make you as efficient as a Swiss time piece.

So go ahead. Drink those 10+ cups of coffee. Go to Coffee Bean, go to Dunkin’ Donuts, go to that place down the street, buy a coffee machine, get the intern to whip up a cuppa’ Joe. Just go and do it! Your boss and your bank will thank you for it.

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Football: Beyond the Livescore, the Europa League, better than the Champions League

Europa League Final vs. Champions League Final - Stockholm, Cardiff, Livescore

Given that the finals of both the Europa League and the Champions league are upon us, it’s as good a time as any to discuss why the Europa League is currently better than that of the Champions League.

To preface, it’s fair to say that a lot of people may be disgruntled by this and maybe for good reason. Likely believing that the Europa League players aren’t fit to clean the boots of those in the Champions League. However, I’m here to tell those Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester City fans that it’s very possible that the Champions League may be equal to that of the Europa.

The Champions League has, for a long time, been the undisputed king of the European football scene. Boasting the best teams and players from the best European leagues. Each playing each other in a knockout competition in order to be crowned Europe’s best.

Sounds great right? Well, hear me out.

Although it’s great watching the best teams in the world each other, the competition has lost a lot of its character in previous years. Character that’s been picked up by their younger brother. Because of this, the regularly named “younger brother”, the Europa League (previously the UEFA Cup) has taken its place as the most exciting international competition in Europe.

With the Europa League finishing its arguably strongest season yet, we’re looking at why the league as a whole trump that of the Champions League. Still, although both leagues have had their fair share of breathtaking moments this year, with the upcoming final against Ajax and Manchester United tomorrow, one can’t help but look back at what really makes the smaller European competition great.

So for now, we’re not focusing on the teams in the final and Stockholm and Cardiff, respectfully. Instead, going beyond the Google Livescore and delving into the 7 reasons why the Europa League is currently better than the Champions League.

Europa League and Champions League Final, Livescore, Stockholm, Cardiff 2017 - telegraph.co.uk
Europa League and Champions League Final – telegraph.co.uk

Vying for the carrot

For the last few years, the Europa League has provided some substantial added value to those in the competition. Throwing another reason to really put your best team forward and foregoing the Europa Leagues relative irrelevancy when it comes to European competitions. Because there was a time when many of Europe’s bigger clubs would see the competition as the undesirable and somewhat redundant younger brother of the Champions League; which is full of galáctico’s and the glamour of the elite competition.

Instead, what’s happening now is, there is more on the line for those in the Europa League. Because for the team that reaches and then wins the final, gets rewarded with not only sums of money that can merely be desired by the regular people of everyday society. But they get an automatic spot in the group stages of the next season’s Champions League.

Essentially, this raises the stake of the competition and in doing so, it raises the level of skill, excitement and desire to win.

Fun for the fans

For fans, there can often be an air of fear when travelling to the lesser known and smaller cities of Europe. Creeping into the dark corners, not knowing what type of person or rival supporter you might come across.

Fortunately, now it’s a different story. With teams and fans from all over Europe relishing the chance to travel to other parts of the continent. Frequently being called the “stag-do cup”. Travelling to places like Prague, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Vienna, Lisbon, Budapest, Sevilla and many more make for great times ahead. Some of the best cities in Europe are competing in Europa league. So if anything, it can merely be another city you can tick off the map.

Take into consideration the talent you get to watch, the high standard of the game and the memories with friends, it’s easy to see what all the talk is about.

A genuine talent pool

When you look at all of the biggest players who play at the biggest clubs in the world, what do you see?

You see a person who’s put in the hard yards. They’ve worked their way up through youth teams, loan spells and transfers to get to the point they’re currently at. Putting in countless hours of training, sacrifice and discipline to reach the point of fame, money and excess… The point where many want to end up.

Well, these people didn’t get there overnight. And likely, they didn’t start off at those clubs. Sure, clubs like Manchester United, Arsenal, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Athletico Madrid, Juventus and countless others have famed academies for youngsters. Yet they can only churn out a limited number of graduates. And even as a graduate, there’s no guarantee that your youth team will sign you as a professional.

So what happens?

These talented players often go to smaller teams to perfect their craft. Best case scenario, the best of the youth talent will likely go to those clubs that are maybe slightly below the elite and instead compete in the Europa League.

Teams like Ajax, Schalke 04, Lyon and the rest and renowned for having top young talent. Many of whom will likely move onto bigger and better things. Meaning, if you watch the Europa League, you’re looking at the genuine future of football.

Qualified UEL Teams - Daily Mail
Qualified UEL Teams – Daily Mail

Champions League is stagnant and easy to predict

For a long time, the Champions League has been filled with the world’s best teams. Among those, there are a few absolute elite teams, that vie for top spot every year. From this, comes a certain predictability.

Sure, there might be the odd explosive team that defies odds, having a great season, peaking in the Champions League (AS Monaco). However generally, it’s a safe bet to say that the top four teams in Europe will likely be Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Juventus… With possibly the odd upset.

That’s the problem.

Yet with the younger brother, you’ll more than likely be surprised by the final scores.

Hard, gritty and explosive

One of my biggest quarrels with the current Champions League, is that it’s lost a lot of its toughness. A good excuse for this is that they have all of the talent and pace that they don’t have to be kicking chunks out of each other. I you want to see that, watch the English Championship, instead.

Still, a common complaint about modern football is that it’s soft and full of prima donna’s and divers. Which yes, it does exist in all facets of the game, unfortunately. But one cannot say that the Champions League is something of a Mecca.

Compare this to the Europa League and it’s something of a different story. Like stated previously, this unsportsmanlike conduct does still occur. But on a lower level. Instead, teams are ready to go in hard for the ball and look willing to spill blood for their team. Adding to this, the league is fast and skillful, to the point where talent looks about on par with the elite.

Which leaves the Europa being just as fast paced and explosive as the champions league, in addition to being hard, gritty and great to watch.

Exciting – more matches and more goals scored

An easy statistic to analyse when comparing the Europa League and the Champions League is the amount of matches and the amount of goals scored. It’s an easy statistic to reassure you that what you’re watching is actually worth it.

If you’re a football nut, then the Europa League is likely for you. Featuring 196 matches, in contrast to the Champions League’s 118, you surely get more bang for your buck. But if that isn’t enough, then you’ll be glad to hear that the Europa League typically scores more goals too!

Manchester United's Marcus Rashford has been prolific in front of goal - ABC.net.au
Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford has been prolific in front of goal – ABC.net.au

In Summary

In the end, I think it’s fair to say the real winner is the football fan. With games being played constantly throughout the season, you’ll have a non-stop conveyor belt of matches to watch and if you’re lucky, attend.

But since we’re comparing the Europa League and the Champions League… Again, it’s fair to say that with the Europa League, the football fan wins. Watching great youthful players, playing for teams in cities you might not know much about; going in hard, playing a high caliber of football, scoring goals and genuinely unpredictable. It’s a football fans dream.

So if nothing else, next time you see that there’s a Europa League game on, give it a watch! And don’t forget to tune into watch Ajax from Amsterdam take on Manchester United in Stockholm in the final. I’m sure it’ll be worth it.

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Creativity and Originality: “Good Artists Copy, but Great Artists Steal”

Creativity and Originality - Quentin Tarantino - Cinema Blend

A quote that’s been thrown around by countless innovators, entrepreneurs and mavericks. The quote, originally spoken by Picasso leaves behind a few questions. Is creativity still alive? If it is, is it anything more than recycled ideas and regurgitated thought? And finally, does creativity have to live with originality? 

Ah, creativity and originality.

Well, to answer this, we first have to look into those who have said these fabled words. Typically, it’s the writers, the poets, the musicians, the leaders, entrepreneurs, business leaders and then the rest.

First uttered by Pablo Picasso, a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, stage designer, poet and playwright. Known to be full of creativity and originality, despite this quote. For this reason, Picasso is globally renowned for his ability to create and to inspire. However, since then, there have been many… Regurgitators. Most recently, Apple founder Steve Jobs and one of Hollywood’s resident ‘crazy creatives’, Quentin Tarantino.

The question surrounding creativity and originality leaves me wondering… is the reusing of ideas even a bad thing? Because at some point throughout the creative process, there can sometimes be an undeniable alignment between the act of ‘stealing’ and paying homage.

Because creativity and originality is much like life. It’s not always black and white. Instead the evident shades of grey are the completed product that is likely improving an industry, pushing boundaries or pushing the creative envelope.

Creativity and Originality - Reservoir Dogs/City on Fire comparison - Storypick
Creativity and Originality – Reservoir Dogs/City on Fire comparison – Storypick

Quentin Tarantino – Homage or thievery 

Quentin Tarantino is an icon and even the poster child for 90’s counter-culture. Being named not only a creative, but a genius.

Maybe it’s quite an apt title, as he writes, directs and has creating some of the most widely successful films since his filmic genesis. And now, because of that, he’s one of the most highly sought after and anticipated directors… But because he’s so admired and accepted, you already know this.

The general public, film reviewers and pundits alike all tout Mr. Tarantino as being one of the most creative people in the film industry.

 

But is he truly deserving of this creative title? Is being called a creative just an arbitrary term we give ourselves to feel important or superior? Or is being a creative a wide range of things that we struggle to truly categorise? Frankly, it doesn’t really matter.

Regardless, Tarantino is no stranger to the idea of gathering inspiration from all around you. He frequently pays homage to some of his favourite films. ‘Copying’ scenes from Jean-Pierre Melville, Alfred Hitchcock, John Woo and many others.

In fact, his breakout film ‘Reservoir Dogs’ is widely reviewed as almost a carbon copy of Ringo Lam’s Hong Kong cinema classic, ‘City on Fire’. Despite its similar themes, plot, character development and general actions within the film, it’s revered and held in high pedigree.

So is ‘Reservoir Dogs’ really a masterpiece of creativity and originality, even though it isn’t totally original? Because it is creative.

Well, despite the nods to Lam’s ‘City on Fire’, I’d say it is. Overall, it’s written well, well shot and tells an interesting and gut wrenching (if you’ve seen the film, you’d know why this is funny) story. Essentially, it builds on from Lam’s initial foundation. Although ‘City on Fire’ is now said to be a great film. It’s theatrical release got very average response. Being said to have holes and errors throughout.

Since Tarantino’s edition is said to be a masterpiece, is it fair to say that he’s covered such holes? I’d say, yes. He added, paying homage to something he admires, ultimately making it great… That’s fairy creative.

“I steal from every movie ever made” – Quentin Tarantino

What does the Picasso quote mean?

When tackling the question about the link between creativity and originality, we have to first direct this quote. So the best way to describe and thus defend the quote “good artists copy, but great artists steal” is through Steve Jobs’ wording.

“It comes down to trying to expose yourself to the best things that humans have done and then try to bring those things into what you’re doing.” – Steve Jobs

Essentially, it’s giving yourself the ability to build onto what is already great. Whether that means by updating something, introducing a new theme, changing it to suit a new audience or any other reason for that matter.

Yet, this only addresses one part of the quote. The part of the quote that say’s people steal ideas. Which is fine, because when it’s read or heard, this is usually the most confronting part of the statement.

Instead, maybe we should look at the saying and address the idea that the only way an artist can theoretically be good or even great, is to either copy or steal. So from this we can assume that new and original ideas will no longer cut it. That it’s the tried and true methods that will continually reap reward. Basically, although originality may be a sub-set of creativity, it now has no value in comparison to the norm.

No, I refuse to believe this. I think that if the idea is good enough, it’s good enough. Still, even if it’s an amazing idea, it doesn’t mean it’ll be successful. After all, as the adage goes, if you mutter the meaning of life in a loud stadium, nobody will hear it. So at the end of the day, marketing is an important side-note for creativity. Ipso-facto, marketing is creative…

But I digress.

A more fitting quote

When it comes to creativity, sure, originality may not always be there. Because like it or not, the quote from Picasso and later by any number of ‘winners’ over the years does hold water to an extent. Building on an idea may theoretically make it better, push the envelope and even potentially help millions.

However, I believe there’s a better quote that sums up creativity and originality.

“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination… Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent” – Jim Jarmusch

In summary

When discussing originality and creativity, you might think that these two words aren’t even connected. Or not, it doesn’t matter. Maybe they are, maybe they’re not. Depending on your lean, you may be right or wrong. I like to think that originality still exists, even if it may take a while to rear its head. But really, what even is an idea? It’s merely a culmination of all your experiences, good, bad and otherwise. Of all the books you’ve read, films you’ve watched, people you’ve listened to. Everything. We learn by looking at others, gathering experiences and just being exposed to as much as possible.

So in light of this, I’ll leave you with this thought if you want to keep your creativity and originality flowing.

When you watch a film, read a book, hear a speech, consume media, or whatever, think to yourself… What would you steal?

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Creativity: 5 Reasons You Should Consider Working Freelance as a New Graduate

Freelance Graduate Desktop Computer

Working freelance often can open up a variety of doors. Doors that allow you to grow in ways you probably thought were out of your reach, regardless of your position in your industry. Whether you’re a fresh graduate, 5 years in, 10 years in or an industry veteran, here are 5 reasons you should consider freelancing.

There’s a freelance gig for just about anything now a day. Whether you’re in social media, writing, design, web design of some king (UX, UI, development, branding, etc.), strategy, proof reading/editing, video editing or virtually anything else… You could likely do it freelance.

Yet often when students come out of university, they encounter a few different kinds of feelings. Feelings of joy, nervousness, fright, opportunity, intellectual superiority, intellectual inferiority and many, many others. And all of those thoughts and feelings are totally fair enough, given that you’ve just stepped out into one of the hardest periods of finding a job, let alone a career, in recent history.

You have every right to feel whichever way you do.

Still, regardless of your degree type or professional experience, many look past the opportunity to work for yourself. They believe they won’t be taken seriously, being so young and inexperienced. And they think they’ll be shunned for not going the direct route of getting a job straight off the bat.

I’ll be the first to say that experience is always helpful (obviously). Completing internships or gaining transferrable skills while at university is always the best way to go about it. Yet, university students are equipped with a set of skills and opportunities that they can use to gain employment, if only from themselves, once graduating.

So if you think that because you have only just graduated to the real world, you need to get a real job, you may be mistaken.

Well, I’m here to tell you that working freelance or as a consultant as a graduate isn’t so crazy after all.

There are countless apps and tools available on the internet

A great reason not to go freelance would be because you don’t have all the skills or tools to succeed. Well, I’m here to say that you do.

Regardless of the project you’re working on, there will be an app or tool to make it easier. Sure, you might have to pay for the download from time-to-time, but they’ll get used. It’s easy to find the right software to use and it’s easy to watch YouTube tutorials on how to use them.

Freelance Graduate gaining a breadth of knowledge - Unsplash.com
Freelance Graduate gaining a breadth of knowledge – Unsplash.com

Breadth of learning

Working freelance, regardless if you’re a graduate or a seasoned industry veteran provides certain advantages. One very clear advantage is that you will get exposed to sides of the industry, you might otherwise not get exposed to.

It doesn’t matter if you’re specialty is social media, writing, design, web design of some kind (UX, UI, development, branding, etc.), strategy, proof reading/editing, video editing. If you do your specialty, you’ll also get exposed to other areas. You’ll gain a greater understanding for most other areas of your business, from admin, to the adobe suite, to Google AdWords.

Essentially, you WILL learn more and have a greater breadth of knowledge than those who’re working for big companies.

Fills in time while you look for a real job OR as a side-hustle

Freelancing can allow time off, to be time well spent. You’re spending your free time learning about your industry, growing and giving yourself that needed edge over any other new graduate. It can be done while you work part-time as a barista and while you’re looking for your next big break.

Basically, it’s downtime spent well.

“Don’t spend all Saturday watching House of Cards… Work on your side hustle” Gary Vee

Money

Even with limited experience, it is very possible to make decent-to-great money working freelance, even as a graduate or student. You don’t have to have worked in the industry, however limited (although any experience is beneficial).

Take Ross Simmonds, a freelancer and now entrepreneur. He was working in advertising for a limited time, but then handed in his notice and got started on the freelance path. It may have been scary, but he managed to make very good money from it, despite being you (you see, this is no longer an excuse).

Whether you’re looking for some added money from your side hustle, or as your sole income… If done well, freelancing can be a profitable gig.

Freelance Graduate - Rawpixel.com
Freelance Graduate – Rawpixel.com

Companies value a fresh perspective

There are certain inherent advantages to being a student. Namely that you have a new and exciting way of thinking.

Maybe not every company wants this, because they may be such in their ways. However, you’ll find that many love having young blood in their office, spurring new thoughts and ideas.

So a new and fresh way of thinking is great for a brand. If you can’t find work (it’s okay if you can’t), then freelance might be a great way to keep your brain active, in the industry and working hard and being creative. The companies you approach will likely appreciate you more because you are fresh.

In summary

Don’t be scared and think you’re not good enough. Few people ever think they’re good enough for anything, before they start. It’s only when you start, that you realise you’re capable.

I’ve said this before, but I’m not motivational speaker, nor do I play to be! But as a graduate or even still a student, you have a great foundation of knowledge. If you’re are willing to put time and effort in, you should be able to gain much more than just money whilst freelancing. So as long as you’re willing to keep working hard, learning, growing, networking, meeting new people and businesses, you’ll be fine.

 

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Management: Great Ways to Get Your Millennials to Thrive in the Workplace

Millennials - Unsplash.com.au

 

For some time now, millennials have gotten a bad reputation. Mostly from older generations such as the Gen-Xers and baby boomers, being named the entitled generation or the lazy generation. Well, however you feel about millennials, there’re great ways to get the best out of them in the workplace.

Like it or not, in the coming years, millennials are going to outnumber previous generations in the workplace. Offices will be filled with them, work sites will be bustling with them and essentially, the working world will be run by them. For the time being however, there are still many Gen-Xers and even fewer boomers lining the corridors, ready to work and working hard. Yet, “With 75 million Millennials entering the workplace, organisations have no choice but to learn how to recruit, grow and retain these workers”

If you ask anybody about younger generations and the way they’re beginning to integrate into their workforce, you might get a varied response. There are thousands of articles, blogs, studies and reports indicating that the millennial generation is one that is unwilling to work, feeling entitled to higher pay and better jobs. All the while wanting to spend as much time away from work as possible. Regularly being named “snowflakes, lambasted for their supposed entitlement and criticised for being constantly on their phones.”

And sure, in some facets this may be correct. Because who doesn’t want a more competitive salary, better work, more free time and to reply to a Facebook notification at 10.30am?

Still, there are also thousands of articles, blogs, studies and reports indicating the opposite. That millennials are just as ambitious as the previous generations, just as willing to work (hard) and do not feel entitled.

Alas, this is merely a generalisation. I’m sure there are individuals that embody undesirable traits and stereotypes throughout the generation. Yet these individuals likely appear throughout all generational subsects.

Regardless of the side of the fence you fall onto, millennials aren’t just coming… They’re here and here to stay.

But I’m not here to talk about this. Instead, I want to discuss how an employer, a manager or anyone else for that matter can engage a millennial worker effectively. Getting the best and highest quality of work out of them. Because like it or not, millennials aren’t the same as older generations. They grew up with highly sophisticated technologies, becoming tech and social media natives. Likely growing up with parents who not only wanted to be around, but actually were around. As perhaps in contrast to their parents of whom possibly weren’t always there for them. The millennials parents may very well have been a ‘latchkey kid’.

Like it or not, the environments that these generations grew up with were different. Thus spawning a different kind of adult. Splitting adjacent generations in very obvious ways.

It’s true, millennials want more free time, more competitive salary’s and to travel the world (generally). And are frankly in the best position to do so.

So this begs the question, “as an employer, what are the best ways to get millennials to thrive in the workplace?”

Scrubs JD & Dr. Cox - News from the Boston Becks
Scrubs JD & Dr. Cox – News from the Boston Becks

Be a mentor

Although many millennials believe themselves to be intelligent and switched on, they know they’re not yet a master. They generally understand that they’ve got a lot of room to grow and are eager to learn from the best. In this case, this is you.

They want someone they can come to with issues and questions. They want a mentor. Someone to help them grow as a professional and allow them to absorb as much knowledge in a trusting and supportive working relationship, as possible. Lead your millennial employees, don’t over-manage.

This fosters growth for both the mentor and mentee. Who knows, you might learn something, too.

Provide creative freedom and autonomy

As much as millennials love being ‘social’, they also want autonomy, creative freedom and accountability in their work. They like working as part of a group or team if need be, however, they also crave the ability to prove their worth.

When it comes to autonomy and freedom within the workplace, it may seem as if the younger generation may slack off from time-to-time. Maybe surfing Facebook or online shopping. But when you, as an employer/manager create a supportive and trusting environment, you’ll likely be surprised at how much millennials “knock their work objectives out of the park”. Likely exceeding your expectations and becoming a productive member of your team.

Provide feedback

This may fall back into a stereotype of millennials a bit. The idea that millennials crave reassurance and pats on the back. Well, in this case, you may be somewhat correct.

Providing feedback is a crucial part of managing a millennial workforce. They want to be reassured that they’re on the right track and they’re performing to the standards that are expected. Millennials want to develop professionally and be held accountable for their efforts. Providing frequent feedback does just this.

Let them know the overlying strategy

Allowing employees to be informed about the overall strategy allows them to understand what it is that they’re bringing to the table. Frankly, it lets them know exactly where they sit within the project. Regardless of their position within the company, they just want to know where their work fits into the overarching strategy. Thus providing them with a purpose.

Millennials Open Floor Plan - Marc Mueller
Millennials Open Floor Plan – Marc Mueller

Unstructure the workplace

This is crucial for the millennial in the workplace, again coming back to the idea of trust. They want to build relationships with others, breaking down barriers within the office (both physically and socially). If this means taking down the cubicles and instead opting for an open floor plan. Or having an office BBQ once a month. Or letting individuals come and go when they have to (or are sometimes forced to). These all work to unstructure the workplace and build trust among management and millennials.

In Summary

Millennials may be a bit different from the Gen-Xers and baby boomers. But in reality, they aren’t actually all that different. All they want is reassurance of what they’re doing, a reasonable standard of living and trust in the workplace.

They may want three weeks off a year instead of the standard two, or maybe they’ll be caught on their phone from time-to-time. But they’ll likely surpass your expectations if given the chance.

 

And as a side note… When hiring, don’t be afraid to take a chance on a millennial, even if they lack the 2-3 years’ experience. They’re eager and willing to learn and get out there, and more than happy to enter into their chosen fields.

 

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Craft Beer: Feral Brewery’s Hop Hog, My Current Favourite Beer

Feral Hop Hog

The craft beer, Hop Hog, from Western Australia’s Feral Brewery is one of my current favourites. With a taste that’s like no other, branding that isn’t afraid and with a host of beers behind it, the American IPA Hop Hog by Feral, is worth the taste.

Beer has many uses. It makes a person’s creative juices flow into a river of ideas and possibilities. It can allow for bosses to undergo the “beer test”, allowing potential employers to find the right person for the company to hire. Or it can just be a lubricant for social interaction, in which every person needs.

Still, to me and many others, craft beer is something special. For many reasons. From the taste, to the colour, to the undeniable individuality through their branding, craft beer breaks a mould that mass produced beer companies created.

Now in saying that, there’s nothing wrong with a mass produced beer. They’re often cheaper and more readily available at your local bottle shop or on tap. Still, the craft beer industry has without a doubt blown up in recent years, because (for what I believe) they break boundaries and aren’t afraid to have some fun with it.

There must be something liberating about being part of a company that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Likewise, with working for an alcohol brand (for me, that’s the dream). But when the two are combined, I believe that something great can happen.

Sure, every company has to look at the bottom line. However, when you’re not influenced by upper management, shareholders and the desire to be the next Coca-Cola of beer, but instead look to just make a great product and have fun with all aspects of the business, a lot can be achieved.

An example of this is almost every small craft beer company on the market. Because why else would they get into the alcohol business if they didn’t like the product? And since the beer industry is already so big, many would say it’s an uphill battle to gain any market share.

So for these craft breweries, they’re in it for the love of the product.

Hop Hog - Good Times Craft Beverages
Hop Hog – Good Times Craft Beverages

About Feral Brewery

Feral is a brewery in the south west of Western Australia, located in the Swan Valley. Producing and selling a plethora of beers, Feral have grown a lot since their genesis in 2002. Far from the Neolithic times where man drank fermented alcohol to merely survive, we’ve managed to turn such a noble beginning into something deliciously selfish. Feral have done this well, creating award winning beers and showing no signs of stopping.

In fact, it was the Hop Hog that has taken out multiple awards globally.

Why Hop Hog?

Hop Hog is award winning. Need I say more?

Yes? Well, alright then.

Because since individual’s pallets can differ, especially since not everyone loves the taste of certain types of beers… Regardless of their award winning status, I’ll tell you why I like it.

Before I even pop the top, I admire the branding of the bottle. Featuring the logo, the sketchy typeface and the image of a hog, the exterior is amazing. Keeping with its themes of the company, the Hop Hog adds to the overall brand excellently.

Next, you open the beer.

You take a sip and realise that its fruity and citrusy. The aroma and taste of the West Australian delicacy is enough to finish it and grab another. From one turns into more. What more can I say, than its just a delicious American IPA.

To clear things up!

For those who want to know… I wouldn’t call myself a craft beer enthusiast or snob. I like drinking and drinking not to get drunk, but to enjoy myself. That’s not to say that I haven’t gotten so drunk that vomit’s come out my nose. But I drink lots of things, from different types of beer, to cider, to wine, to rum, to any number of others that you can think of. they generally taste good and there’s nothing wrong with that.

So yeah, I like beer of all kinds.

People often say that an IPA tastes like “each mouthful is like letting an uncoated painkiller tablet linger a few seconds too long on your tongue: momentarily unpleasant, with the guarantee of relief after you swallow.” You know what? Some do taste bad. But god damn, does Hop Hog taste good!

In Summary

If you’ve read this far, you can tell that I like beer. There’s not much that I like more than going down to the pub with my mates and catching up over a beer, Feral or not. Regardless, there’s no going past a Hop Hog. Hell, it’s probably my current favourite beer.

Yet, regardless of your beer tastes. For all of you drinking what you like, cheers. Whether it’s a craft beer, a mass produced one or any other kind of drink, this is for you. Because no matter what it is you drink, life’s short so drink what you like! And if you even come across some Hop Hog (likely in Australia, but can be found internationally too), give it a try!

Branding: Breaking Down NHL Ice Hockey Team, the Minnesota Wild Rebrand

Minnesota Wild Team

Rebranding a sports team can be a big deal. Primarily due to their strong support, sentimentality and emotion through the fans. For this reason, it’s imperative that when a team rebrands, such as the Minnesota Wild, the designer must take precautions. Not only to ensure the rebrand represents the ideals and values of the club and culture. But also to appease the database of loyal fans, by maintaining what the club means to them.

Given that the NHL Playoffs are upon us, albeit the Wild mightn’t progress. It seems a good a time as any to discuss the branding decisions for the Minnesota Wild.

Despite many in Minnesota disagreeing with me, so much that they want their team back to its original identity of the Minnesota North Stars. The current logo is impeccably designed and I really like it. Perhaps this is because, back in 2011, when I started watching the NHL, I chose to support the Wild due to their interesting logo. Regardless, many native Minnesotans are petitioning to get their old club identity back. Yet still, I cannot help but love the brand identity of the current Wild team.

Nevertheless, there are still some folks out there who agree with me. Believing the brand identity is strong. So knowing this, its easy to see that… The issue of a rebrand is by all means, a tightrope. A tightrope for the club, the executives and mostly the design team.

Get it right and you’re a legend. Meanwhile, if you get it wrong, you’re an outcast, a fool and likely not allowed back into the state.

This is why the Minnesota Wild rebranding will go down as a success, as far as branding goes. Because without a doubt, they hit the nail on the head, getting the project done with class, flair and respect to the past.

So without further adieu, these are three reasons the I believe the early 2000’s Minnesota Wild rebrand was such a success.

Pays tribute to the past

Paying homage to the past is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Whether its through a rebrand, like in the Wild’s case, or through any other media or medium. When homage is paid, the reception can often be a lot better and lighter than if chosen to break new creative grounds. This isn’t to say that this is a bad thing. However, call me a romantic, but I believe that a tribute paid can pave a way forward, regardless of industry.

When paying respects to the past, you acknowledge whats come before. There can often be a fine line between paying tribute and copying or plagiarising. Yet, I feel that when somebody “creates”, that cannot help but integrate aspects of influence.

Quentin Tarantino said it best.

“Good artists create, but great artists steal” – Quentin Tarantino

By this, he means that from every film he’s ever seen or watched, he gets inspiration from.

When rebranding, one should pay respect in a similar way. In the Minnesota Wild rebrand, the design pays homage to the previous team, the Minnesota North Stars. Ensuring theres a star in the new logo.

Secondly, the team kept the same colours. By not changing the club completely allowed the design identity to align well with the past. Showing the club’s not only growing, but advancing with the past was important throughout the branding process.

Given that Ice Hockey fans are some of the most passionate in the world, giving respect to the past when moving into the future is vital.

Minnesota Wild Logo
Minnesota Wild Logo

Clever Design

A great logo says a lot about a club. There are many average logo designs in the world, that when you come across a great logo design, it should be appreciated. It is for this reason that I feel the rebrand was a success. Because if nothing else, it was most of the reason why I chose to support the Wild. Despite having never set foot in Minnesota, nor supporting any other team from the state.

The logo is clever. Bringing imagery into the mix in a succinct and aloof way. Combining images that reflect the land they come from and depicting it in such a way where the viewer is visually rewarded.

Combining images to make a whole is a great pseudo-use of the gestalt principle. Allow the simplicity of the sum of both images to create one whole image. And very well done, to boot.

The graphic design of the logo contains a skyline, as well as the head of an unknown animal (most assume it to be a bear). Still, this clever usage from the designer may well have earned the team respect. If not from hockey fans, surely from design and communications fans.

The fans decision

Thanks to the internet, industries of all kinds have the ability to quickly communicate. So throughout this rebranding process, the Wild reached out to fans. Looking to get their take on the situation, allowing suggestions and selection.

Posting branding templates and mockups to fan communities to guide the company process. Subsequently, the Minnesota Wild were directed by their supporters. Opting for the most supported brand template as the successful identity.

The process may have taken longer because of this. Yet due to the involvement, the Wild can be seen by fans to be more community oriented.

In Summary

Throughout the rebrand, there were skeptics. People who, for whatever reason, didn’t want their club defaced and changed. This is something many fans can understand, as we all face nostalgia from time to time with sports clubs. Regardless of the sport, we have a tendency to get caught up and become emotional, possibly even irrational about the future of the beloved team.

This is why this aspect of the Minnesota North Stars, turned Minnesota Wild rebrand was such a success. Because although a rebrand is best compared to walking on eggshells, the Wild appeared to have succeeded. Through developing a strong identity, they’ve created a brand that can evolve.

Showing that even an industry with a built in passionate fanbase, which has the propensity to erupt with joy, anger or sadness at a buzzer and can easily be projected elsewhere, can change for the better. 

However, going beyond this, it can move with the times and become a leader in design and hopefully, its sport.

 

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Travellers: Go Beyond Eat, Pray, Love in Bali, Indonesia

Bali Indonesia - Ocean life

Travelling to Bali, Indonesia is something that’s garnered lots of attention over the last 10+ years. Through the popularity of the novel and subsequent film adaption of Eat, Pray, Love, Indonesia and specifically Bali has become synonymous with being a place to get away from it all, find love and find yourself. Many even finding it hard to think of Bali without entangling it amongst the bestselling story. Still, Bali, Indonesia is so much more if you venture beyond the fairytale and into the realm of real island exploration.

Today, I’m not here to discuss some Hollywood-esq experience. Instead, I’m focused on what you can do as a traveller to go beyond the ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ experience when you’re in the island of the Gods, Bali, Indonesia.

Now, I don’t know if you can tell, but I’ve been to Bali my fair share of times.

I’ve visited six times so far (more to come, I’m sure) and have what I feel to be a well-rounded experience of the island and surrounding islands, overall. Travelling to Indonesia from Perth, Western Australia with family, with friends on a “lads trip”, solo adventures, diving and surfing holidays and everything in-between.

If I know anything, then I know this… I’m very lucky to live only three hours away from this island paradise.

Yet from my experiences, I know that Bali has more than one “face”. It’s more than the place in which Eat, Pray, Love was partially set. And its more than just the spot where Aussies go in search for “cheap beer and a suitcase of cheap DVD’s”. Bali has many faces.

Over the years, Bali has been becoming increasingly popular with Australians. However, as the internet has developed, books been written and films made, Indonesia and places like it, have had a surge of a more diverse crowd. This is great news for the Bali tourism. But how great is it for the culture. Because as I repeatedly go back, I tend to notice that in the main stretch of Kuta (the most touristy area) there is always a new hotel being build, perhaps a new shopping mall or less room on the beach.

This is all good news for the locals. Potentially putting more money in their pockets and affording them the opportunity to reach more people. Still, what’s happening to their culture?

The short answer… If you venture outside of Kuta, you’ll find that there are still many areas which are humbled by tradition and rich in culture.

Now look, I’m not going to pretend that I’m a master of the Balinese culture, much less the Indonesian one. However, throughout my time, I’ve noticed and learnt some things. Some of these things, only prevalent in the smaller villages and islands as Bali is becoming much more of the Miami of South East Asia. Again, this may very well be a good thing. Adding to the hotels in Bali and the general Balinese tourism may be great news for travellers and locals alike. However, if you’re looking to go beyond the Eat, Pray, Love experience and get a real understanding of Bali and Indonesia whilst having a great time… Listen up, because here are the five places you should go and do in Bali, Indonesia.

Journey to success
Ubud rice paddy fields, Bali, Indonesia

Ubud

Although this article is centered around going beyond the Eat, Pray, Love phenomenon, there’s no going past Ubud. Being rich in colour and culture, Ubud is a must see. Heading to the Monkey Forest may be deemed somewhat ‘touristy’, yet still definitely worth the visit.

Get up close and personal with the stunning landscaped that drape over the area like a cloth. With immaculate temples, delicious food and coffee, and devastatingly beautiful rice paddies. Ubud is worth the trip.

Uluwatu

Uluwatu, a surfing Mecca. Shrouded in high-rising cliffs, great bars and restaurants and peeling waves, even in terms of Bali, this place is laid back. You’ll likely come across surfers of all levels, looking to catch the wave of their life or merely to live the island lifestyle. Still, fear not, because Uluwatu isn’t just for surfers, the pubs, hotels and actives are second to none.

Pro tip: For a killer sunset lazily sinking beyond the waves, head to the Single Fin bar. Located on top of a cliff top on the ocean, it’s surely a sight to be seen.

Changgu

Being one of the up-and-coming areas of Bali, Changgu is becoming more popular while keeping its roots. Although more foundations have been laid, the overall feel of the area is still very hippie. Giving the individual the feeling that they’ve stumbled onto a secret place where more tourists not dare to visit.

Nusa Lembongan

Lembongan is a place where I’ve had one of the best weeks of my life. This small island isn’t much more than an island paradise seemingly for those who either love the ocean or commercialised Asia.

With great surf and dive spots, Lembongan is an ocean lover’s dream. Yet with only a few roads around the island to bike around and a handy bridge headed over to the adjacent Nusa Ceningan, coupled with great small restaurants and friendly people, this island is anyone who loves to travels, dream.

Pro tip: Looking for a place to stay, do yoga, learn, dive or surf, I recommend Big Fish.

Bali, Indonesia - Big Fish dive book
Bali, Indonesia – Big Fish dive book

Gili Islands

Gili is yet another increasingly popular spot and for good reason. Much like Lembongan, it has great beaches for surfing, diving and snorkeling, with an increasing amount of pubs and hotels on the island. A great choice if you’re looking for an all-round adventure!

Extra: Kuta

Often Kuta is either seen as a staple for a holiday to Bali, or a spot to avoid at all costs. Personally, I have few quarrels with it, given I’ve spent time there. The fact that it’s by far the busiest place in Bali tells you that it’s going to be full of tourists, pubs and clubs, tattoo parlors and DVD shops. Still, I recommend when visiting Bali, that you stay there for at least a few nights. Sure you don’t have to stay within the hustle and bustle of it all in central Kuta. Instead, there are loads of great places on the outskirts. Places like Legian and Seminyak.

Either way, going to Kuta can be fun. It has a great water park, a good nightlife and nice beaches.

In Summary

There may be many different faces to Bali, Indonesia. But looking beyond the typical Eat, Pray, Love ridiculousness (that brought masses of people to the island) is sometimes needed. At the end of the day, we’re all different and looking for different things. Especially when travelling. Whether its great food, spirituality or love. Or surf, alcohol and a party, Bali’s got it.

The one thing I would say to any traveller looking to tick Bali off their list is to see Bali for what it is. Stay in more than one place; experience the busy streets of Kuta juxtaposed against that of an out-of-the-way island. You might go in thinking you’re looking for one thing, yet find you enjoy another much more.

You never know, it will probably even do your health a world of good.

So go out and enjoy Bali, Indonesia for what it is. A diverse part of the world, for which you need to check out!

“Travel, it’s the only thing that you buy that makes you richer.” – Anonymous

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Advertising: Mock ‘Penguin Books’ Campaign

Penguin Books

OK, so at university I studied Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations and in my second year, I was tasked through a unit of mine, to create an advertisement for Penguin Books.

It got a good response and subsequently, despite its flaws, I (mostly) like it.

So, I hope you do, too.

Brief

To shoot an original and creative 30 second TVC to persuade a younger target audience to pick up hard copy Penguin Books (Overall filmic quality is secondary to the idea).

Challenge

Hard copy Penguin Books have declined in sales in recent years.

Insight

People love to follow a good story and aspire to be intelligent. However, many don’t know where to start when beginning the journey of literacy. Penguin books is a place where people can go to improve themselves through increased intelligence and imagination, with a great story.

Solution

Penguin books has been inspiring people the world over for years. Therefore, younger generations should inspire their creativity also through gaining an understanding of the “classics”.

 

 

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Entrepreneurs: The First Step on Your Journey to Success

Journey to success

 

As you must know, a journey has to begin, in order to be underway. Begging the question, why are so many people scared or seemingly against going after what they want and starting their journey to success? I’m sure that like most things, there’re different answers for different individuals, not to mention different ways to measure success. Still, there’s only one way to get your journey underway.

Let me preface this by saying, I’m no motivational speaker, nor do I plan to be. This is no framework on how to make money fast (mostly because I’m still figuring out that one for myself), nor am I pushing ideas for how you can work from home. I just want to tell you something of a story (and sure, maybe motivate you if I can) about myself and my experiences, hopefully helping you start your journey to success.

Bali, Indonesia - Journey to Success
Bali, Indonesia

If you have that pioneering or entrepreneurial spirit, not allowing others to dictate your actions and only listening to your own voice… You don’t need to be here (however, since you’re here, perhaps read on). Because you’re already underway.

But for those of you who need a bit of a push to get going and starting your own personal journey to success, take a gander.

A bit about me

Among my friend group, in not so many words, I get a grasp of what people really want out of life. Whether it’s an idea they want to pursue, a job they crave or some kind of a simple goal to achieve, from travelling to marriage.

Although some of them may have their plans mapped out in their mind, they rarely take the leap. Because if all their ducks aren’t in a row, they deem there to be no point in even starting. At least not until they’re more established.

This usually means they’re waiting for the perfect time, for more money, greater support from their peers or improved personal or professional credentials. For these reasons, or a host of others, they choose not to take the leap.

In many respects, they’re waiting to gain permission from others, before themselves. As if they’ve got everything planned out, but can’t take the next step until all of the previous steps have been taken.

Whatever your goal, mission, passion or idea is, your journey to success may be a marathon, but you’re not running.

By this is mean, you don’t have to have everything perfectly planned in order to begin to execute. And do you know why? Because in the long run, it doesn’t matter.

All external factors don’t have to be in ship shape to begin your journey. If you want to be your own boss and work from home or travel to every country in the world, then you’ve got to actually do something to get started. Set your goals and begin to achieve them.

Who’s in control

What matters is who’s in control of your life.

Sure, taking advice from and listening to those around you is great. However, you should never let anyone else dictate your actions.

The value of mentorship

In saying this, I’ve been lucky enough to surround myself with some great people. People who are the movers and shakers. Those who are out there doing their thing. Although, at the same time, I know a lot of individuals who may need a push themselves.

I have mentors that I listen to and take advice from. They guide me from their experiences and help me. But at the end of the day, they cannot do the work for me. That, is on me. They could possibly tell me how to make money fast, but again… It’s up to me, because my future and my potential accomplishments, depend on me.

Journey to Success
Gary Vaynerchuk #ASKGARYVEE

It’s all about talent and hard work – Gary Vaynerchuk

To be a success, Gary knows what you need.

It all may sound out of reach for the average person. Because we’re generally programmed to believe that someone has to be born with talent, to be talented. I don’t necessarily think I was born with all that much talent. But I built myself some.

And I wasn’t born with hard work coming out of every hole in my body, I had to learn to work hard.

To be successful, work on yourself. Be talented… So read some books and grow your skill set. Be hard working… “Eat shit for 24 months then eat caviar for the rest of your life.”

Still, at the end of the day. To get to the place of eating caviar and sipping an industrial size bottle of Grey Goose, you have to get started.

Become one of the movers and shakers. Surround yourself with those unstoppable people and most importantly, just put pen to paper and get going. For you, it could mean booking that ticket abroad, writing that book or following that passion of yours. Whatever you’re doing, just start. If you fail, it’s not a problem so long as you learn from your mistakes.

Because hey, Oscar said it best…

Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes – Oscar Wilde

In Summary

Take the steps for your journey to success sooner rather than later.

Because in 500 years’ time nobody’s going to care, nor remember who did what, who made the most money or who travelled where. So work hard and enjoy the spoils while you can. Remember what Gary Vee says, eat shit for 24 months and eat caviar for the rest of your life (and while you’re at it, listen to his podcast and check out his Instagram!)