Simple Productivity Boosts for 2017

Simple Productivity Boosts for 2017

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Happy New Year from VIVO360!

Yes, it is February, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to get a jump on making some positive changes in your life. In our fast-paced world, we all have so much content vying for our attention; technology makes media of all kinds available at our fingertips, driving us to become more compulsive about checking our phones, emails, and social media. This is not to say these developments are negative in and of themselves, but they can be severe distractions in our productivity. They can also drain away our time, taking seconds, minutes, and hours away from the people and activities which hold higher priority. We decided to share a few tools and techniques that can move you towards getting more out of your day, so by the end of 2017, you’ll feel more accomplished and be closer to whatever goals you want to achieve.

Check that list!

Having a fixed “To Do” list is one way to free up your mind so you can focus on the task at hand. It takes a lot of mental energy to remember all of the stuff you need to do, and it’s so easy for something to slip through the cracks if you don’t have a list going. If you already have a reliable process for keeping track of all of the things you need to do, then you’re one step ahead in the game; however, if you haven’t quite figured out a solid organizational plan, there are many options out there for helping you keep things straight.

If you like to experiment with apps, there are a number of list ones out there…probably too many to count. Here are a few that rise to the top of the heap.

  • Google Keep: While primarily a list and note-making app, Keep really helps you build a single repository of any sort of content that you find interesting and useful, so you can access it later. Since it is part of the Google family, if you have a Gmail account, you just use that to sign up and get started. You can have multiple list items going, and set reminders on them. There’s also an extension you can add into Chrome to pin links to your Keep for easy reference later.
  • Todoist: This is a free app you can download from the app store, but certain features (such as Labels) require you to upgrade. In this app, you can create different lists, set reminders (which can, based on your settings, remind you via push notifications), and see your productivity progress via a graph which keeps track of items accomplished. You even get an email in the morning letting you know which things are due that day.
  • Sorted: This app costs $3.99, but it was chosen by LifeHacker as “the task-juggling app you’ve always wanted”. This app makes it very easy to create lists and then drag items to put them in order and assign due dates. It uses a tickler file system, a mainstay in the productivity world, to assist in prioritization of your activities. You can easily personalize with themes, and if you use iCloud, you can sync it, so it appears on all your devices.

If you don’t want to download another app, you probably already have organizational tools at your disposal that can be used to keep your “To Do’s” on a list and not on your mind. Reminders, notes, and calendars are standard apps on smartphones, and email apps such as Google and Outlook have their own calendars to which you can assign tasks. Even if you don’t consider yourself an organized person, familiarizing yourself with these features can help streamline your activities. The benefit to these types of tools is that they are easily accessible, since you are already checking your email and phone throughout the day.

As with any tool, it doesn’t work if you don’t use it, so it may take a little time to get a system down for adding your items to these lists and calendars.

Keeping your focus = stretching your time

We all know that person about whom we wonder “How do they find the time to do it all?”. Sure, we all have the same 24 hours in a day, but there are just some folks who manage to stretch their time a little further. One important aspect of this is that distractions abound, and each time our attention is taken away, we lose focus from what we really need to be doing. Here are a few methods to keep you on track.

  • Move that phone: It’s too easy to become a compulsive creature of habit with our mobile phones. Different researchers have acknowledged that the habitual checking of your phone can lead to addictive behavior, setting off the same reward centers as other types of addictions. It can also be detrimental to personal relationships, making other people feel ignored or unimportant. Beyond these harmful effects, notifications from texts, emails, and social media really can eat away precious time from your day. Proximity is often an issue; just moving it out of sight and reach can make you more conscious of how often you check it. This means you may also need to turn off notifications, so the alerts don’t bother you. Checking your phone (and emails) once an hour for five minutes is certainly less distracting than checking every five minutes.
  • Stay on track: Piggy-backing on the previous tip, uninterrupted work time is key to keeping your mind focused and getting more done. The Pomodoro Technique is one method for helping increase your productivity by training you to dedicate short but targeted blocks of time to your activities. The premise is that by using 25-minute increments where you focus on a single item, you can improve your efficiency, focus, and overall quality of work. Use a kitchen, watch, or phone timer to start your 25 minutes, and then work through, uninterrupted, until the timer goes off. At that time, you can get up to stretch, check your phone or email, or whatever you need to do to stay fresh and productive. There’s even an app called ForestApp, where you set a timer, and as long as the app is not disturbed, a virtual tree will grow, so as you use it, your dedicated time will create a forest.
  • Where does the time go?: If you lose track of time while on your computer and end up wondering where it all went, there’s RescueTime https://www.rescuetime.com/. It runs in the background on your computer, and can tell you what percentage of your time is going to different categories, such as Design & Composition, Social Networking, and Reference & Learning. You can also write out your goals for the day and lifetime milestones, so it acts as a motivational tool as well. It can be a real eye-opener once you see what percentage of your time is spent on distracting versus productive activities, but as they say, knowing is half the battle.

We hope these tips motivate you to take charge of your time and make the most of it in 2017!

48th NAACP Image Awards

48th NAACP Image Awards

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VIVO360 was honored to be a part of the 48th NAACP Image Awards. After months of preparation, the award show events took place February 9 – 11 in Pasadena, California. VIVO360’s integral role was to create the award show website and the voting system for the general public. The strategy for the website was to release snippets and build anticipation for the awards show which was the major event. First, we started with a landing page that gave general information about the date and time of the show. The next phase of the project was another landing page, but this time, there was an added video to create buzz. There was also a section to submit information for nominees. The last and final phase of the website was the full website with a full list of nominees and special honorees.

The special honorees included notables like the director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, Lonnie G. Bunche, III and LeBron James.

During the award show events VIVO360 got to hear some amazing award acceptance speeches from the likes of Viola Davis and Denzel Washington, both of whom had an overwhelming admiration for the organization and the accomplishments each of them were able to accomplish because of the relentless vision of the NAACP.

Watch Denzel Washington’s acceptance speech here.

VIVO360 was also able to meet notable celebrities like Trevor Noah.

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VIVO360 is so proud to be a part of the NAACP Image Awards

VIVO360 is so proud to be a part of the NAACP Image Awards

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VIVO360’s Trevor Noahhero Trevor Noah to present tonight! VIVO360 is so proud to be a part of the NAACP Image Awards. We developed the website (www.naacpimageawards.net) and will be all dressed up this evening for the NON-TELEVISED 48TH NAACP IMAGE AWARDS DINNER TO TAKE PLACE FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10

(Photo Credit: Ruminasean: Sean Gallagher Photography)
Erica Ash and Deon Cole to Co-Host – Attendees include
Viola Davis, Holly Robinson Pete and more…

VIVO360’S 5 FAVORITE THINGS

VIVO360’S 5 FAVORITE THINGS

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And you get a car! And you get a car!… Okay, well, maybe not a car but we do have a list of things that we think is pretty bomb. Our team of marketing strategists and design gurus have curated a list of gifts you need this Holiday season. And even if you don’t like them, try not to be a Grinch this year. Remember, those who give shall receive.

 

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Orbit Key & Phone Finder – Tired of losing your keys, wallet, or phone? Attach an Orbit to your key chain, download the free app, and find your keys with your phone or in the reverse! As my sister would say…Fabulous just fabulous! us.hbutler.co/en_us/orbit.html

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The Oculus Rift – A tumultuous 2016 left a lot of us feeling winded. Virtual reality is a nice way to relax and tune out the crazy that was this past year. There are many virtual reality platforms out there but one of our favorites is the Oculus Rift. Check out how Patron Tequila integrated virtual reality into their brand. Think about how you can use virtual reality in your own brand. Maybe grab some tequila while you explore. www.patrontequila.com/our-story/oculus.html

 

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Buzz Feed’s Tasty Cook Book – For the cooking challenged comes a customizable book that allows you to keep all of your favorite Facebook saved video recipe’s in one place. Buzz Feed’s Tasty digital series has released a book that houses all of its recipes. Go buy one today! The shopping experience is a pleasure. The customer even has the opportunity to select the types of courses to include in the book. tastybook.com/?src=OO_tastyBSU

 

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Michael Khors Smart Watch – The health-nuts out there who are also fashion conscious would love this gift. The Michael Khors smart watch blends the world of Fitbit with Michael Khors styling. You can track your fitness goals at any point in the day. There is no need to have separate watches when one can accomplish both. www.michaelkors.com/michael-kors-access-bradshaw-rose-gold-tone-smartwatch/_/R-US_MKT5004?No=-1&color=0622

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Glowforge 3D Laser Printer – Glowforge’s onboard cameras can cut & engrave directly over top of your drawing. From a doodle to a diagram to a masterpiece, you’re one button away from a finished product. Or, scan drawings and resize, clone, personalize & edit them right in Glowforge software. glowforge.com

Companies updating their brand. Part 1

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In the past year companies have been updating their brand… from Aquafina to the newest company Instagram. A brand is what defines a company. Rebranding is a way to start over without having to start from scratch. Anything new is exciting, and for some of us… we like change. Rebrand is a great way to reintroduce their company to consumers. Also to show current consumers we are the same company but has grown with the time and is a better company. It’s no fun having an out dated logo. You can’t grow if you are the same you were when you first started whether it be 5 years ago or a 100 years ago.  Time are a changing! Your company brand needs to stay fresh. New logo is the new tread! Below are a few of the most resent companies that changed their logo and brand.

 

Instagram

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Only 5 years old and Instagram completely changed their brand. Still the preferred social media platform for many users. Instagram took its skeuomorphic style glyph and transformed it into a minimal, simple design, with a bright colored background, but yet you still know it’s a camera. I absolutely love this new brand. The bright colored gradient and simplistic design is what’s on trend for logos of today.

We realized we needed to move past a rendered camera to get a flexible, scalable glyph, but the previous glyph proved to be a weak basis for an icon. To maintain the previous icon’s gravity, we had to figure out how to give the new mark more character while also removing what was unnecessary.

The question then became, how far do we go? If you abstract too much, the glyph doesn’t feel tied to the history and soul of Instagram. If you make it too literal, it’s hard to justify changing from what we currently have. After a lot of refinement, we landed on a glyph that still suggests a camera, but also sets the groundwork for years to come.
– Ian Spalter, head of design at instagram, on medium

 

Guinness

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Guinness has been around for hundreds of years and since then Guinness has had many logo and brand changes. Still using the key mark, which is a harp. This new logo is not with the current trends and actually does the opposite. The harp is realistic then it never was before. It’s because they did in-depth research with real expert harp-makers. The final logo captures a detail version of a harp with light and shadow.

To bring their vision to life, Design Bridge made models and mock-­ups of their initial harp sketches with expert guidance from London-­based harp-­makers Niebisch & Tree. This collaborative process allowed the team to fully immerse themselves in the harp’s shape and form, from the characteristic curve of the harmonic neck to the way shadows are cast on the instrument, ensuring their design looked and felt as authentic as possible. Design Bridge then sought the expertise of renowned illustrator Gerry Barney, who had drawn a previous version of the Guinness harp in 1968, who hand drew the new icon from their collection of sketches and harp models.
Design bridge provided press release

 

Part 2 coming soon

It Takes Someone Strong To Make Someone Strong – New P&G Campaign is a winner!

It Takes Someone Strong To Make Someone Strong – New P&G Campaign is a winner!

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P&G’ New Campaign is a winner! Great work W+K Portland. With Mother’s Day on the horizon and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio 100 days away, W+K Portland launched a new spot for P&G entitled “Strong.” “Strong” Moms and the Olympics in one powerful Ad. Read more…

Women who make a difference!

Women who make a difference!

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Happy Monday and Happy Women’s Month,

I was asked by my team to write about my role as a “fearless” woman business leader for Women’s History Month.

So many great women and men have come before me and on whose shoulders I stand. Too often as women leaders, it’s easier to find cheerleaders to cheer us on when we really need mentors taking action on our behalf. Entrepreneurship is about experiencing the pain, the work and the love of the journey more so, than arriving at a destination and our mentors help us do that.

This month I give gratitude and appreciation to those who have inspired me to live to my highest and fullest potential. First, I start with my parents, who through encouragement created an environment that made me hungry to learn and hungry for knowledge. I must also acknowledge my grandmother who was an entrepreneur before the name became popular, making a living for herself at 16 by starting with a “shop” selling food and other items within the community she lived. Within a few years she grew that little shop to five, and used this income to send her children to University. This from a woman born in Jamaica in 1910.

In honor of my grandmother– I would like to show you women that I admire and who have made a significant difference in our WORLD! Have fun…

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Sophie Gibson

President

VIVO360, Inc.

 

 

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OPRAH WINFREY

Media Mogul & Philanthropist

Watch Video: www.makers.com/oprah-winfrey

 

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MEGAN SMITH

Chief Technology Officer of the United States

Watch Video: www.makers.com/megan-smith

 

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URSULA BURNS

CEO, Xerox Corporation

Watch Video: www.makers.com/ursula-burns-0

 

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JANE FONDA

Actress, Author & Fitness Icon

Watch Video: www.makers.com/jane-fonda

 

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AVA DUVERNAY

Filmmaker

Watch Video: www.makers.com/ava-duvernay

 

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SHONDA RHIMES

Writer & Producer

Watch Video: www.makers.com/shonda-rhimes

 

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MARISSA MAYER

CEO, Yahoo!

Watch Video: www.makers.com/marissa-mayer

 

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SUSAN WOJCICKI

CEO, YouTube

Watch Video: www.makers.com/susan-wojcicki

 

Need a Date! Try these dating apps!

Need a Date! Try these dating apps!

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Still no date this Sunday? This Sunday, as in Valentine’s Day? If so check out these dating apps. They might get you a date just in time for Sunday.

 

  1. Tinder

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  • Free to download and use with smartphone (iPhone or Android)
  • Easy to get started with no profile creation or photos to take
  • Easy to use, just swipe left or right to reject or approve a match. Swipe up for a Super Like
  • Tons of users to choose from, and since it’s location-based, they change
  • Fun to use in social situations with friends
  • Can start connecting with people more quickly than traditional dating sites
  • Constantly matching you with new people because it’s location-based
  • Easy to use with a clean interface

Download app: gotinder.com

 

 

 

  1. Zoosk

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  • All members can reply to emails sent by premium members, meaning that premium/paid members can contact ANY member and receive a reply
  • Zoosk can pull information from your Facebook account for easy profile creation

Website: zoosk.com

 

  1. OkCupid

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  • It is free to use; paid options are available that include additional site features
  • Excellent privacy options and detailed description of what personal information is shared publically or collected by the site
  • Multiple language website and profiles
  • Easy to use with a clean interface

Website: okcupid.com

 

  1. Plenty of fish

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  • Most features are free including creating a profile, searching, and communicating. If you choose, you can spend money on Goldfish credits or a membership upgrade (see costs below for more details)
  • One of the largest free dating sites online
  • Lots of tips on what makes an attractive profile and how to write a message that will stand out to potential matches

Website: pof.com

 

  1. Coffee meets bagel

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  • Everyday one “bagel” or match, will be delivered to your inbox
  • On Coffee Meets Bagel, you can’t contact someone unless they’ve already confirmed their interest in you
  • CMB matches you with your friends of friends, your matches are much more similar to you than on other dating sites.

download the app: coffeemeetsbagel.com

Halloween at Work

Halloween at Work

Cool and Fun Good to Know Newsletter

Halloween is the second most popular holiday; Christmas is the first, of course! Christmas work parties are a tradition; nowadays Halloween work parties are becoming more and more popular. Here are a few Halloween Do’s and Don’ts for your next Work Halloween party.

 

Costumes:

Do: Costumes are a must! From just hearing cat ears too coming in full on Vampire costume.

Don’t: A sexy costume is a no no! We still need to be professionals in a work environment.

 

Trick or Treat:

Do: Must have treats! Bowls full of candy at your desk or in the office kitchen. Have a sweet potluck; all co-workers bring in homemade cupcakes and cookies. Mmmmm!

Don’t: Bring toothbrushes or healthy snacks. One day out of eating healthy wont kill you.

 

Games:

Do: Team building games and activates is good for the work place.

Don’t: You don’t want to embarrass anyone, don’t be a sore looser or a winner that brags too much.

 

Decorations:

Do: Decorating is fun! Decorate until your hearts content. You can decorate your desk or cubicle and/or decorate the whole office.

Don’t: I would check or ask your co-workers first before you go crazy with the decorations. You don’t want to offend anyone who doesn’t celebrate Halloween.

 

Halloween Parties at work is a positive for employee morale and team building. Gets people to let loose a little and just have fun.