A guest post by Mike Dershowitz, the CEO of Fair Trade Outsourcing, a people-first BPO company that has service delivery centers in the United States, the Philippines, and Ghana. He believes that when companies focus on their employees’ social and economic progress, it motivates them to perform better at work and produce outperforming results. Contact him at +1 215 330 2895 or email@example.com for an initial consultation. Read more from Mike on his Medium site.
Original publish date: August 27, 2018
I’ve been living in Berlin, Germany this summer. It has been an incredibly productive time for me and for Rethink Staffing as a whole, including finally building a real sales team that can deliver results.
My favorite breakfast place is two blocks from where we’re renting a flat, called Anna Blume. It was introduced to me by a Berliner friend 3 years ago upon a visit for business, and situated in the old East Berlin neighborhood of Prenzlauer Berg. The coffee is good, and the bauernomelette (think of pickles, potatoes and eggs) is my favorite. When there alone, I find myself quite contemplative.
I go there weekly to write. My favorite table faces west, and right in front of this table on the street there is the most interesting old tree that has been transformed into a potent symbol of the communal and trustworthy nature inherent in German society.
But to me, it’s also a powerful symbol of how persistent, little actions can have such a large impact on people’s lives and the world at large.
This tree has been transformed into a book exchange. Some craftsman took the trunk of it, cut small shelves-cum-compartments into it, covered with plastic fronts to protect the books from the rain, and placed it on the street with a small note of instruction. The compartments contain no locks, there is no record keeping mechanism whatsoever. You can place or take as many books as you like.
I usually sit there any hour and half, eating, writing, and — like a shoddy Balzac — (at least in my mind) drink a few coffees. In that scant hour and a half of that day of the week, I see all manner of people come by, and with a frequency that astonishes. I’m there for just 90 minutes, but I must see 7 or 8 people come by in that time.
That one craftsperson, with this simple idea of a book exchange, has now impacted thousands of lives. Do the math: I’m there for just 90 minutes one day a week; how many weeks, months and years has the tree been delivering thought-provoking texts, giving pleasure to people as they read something fun, or providing much needed distraction to someone that maybe in some form of distress or crisis.
The enormity of the aggregate of instances of influences on those people using the tree, created by that one craftsperson who created it, can probably never be calculated or known. It was this realization that led me to interpret the value of the tree as a potent reminder to my sales people.
Progress is made in the aggregate. No great labor or achievement was accomplished in one isolated action of such instantaneous, conjured power. Rather, the passage of years and thousands of hours of work can be most consistently attributed to great achievement. Ask any professional athlete, superior craftsperson, or writer. It was the result of thousands or a million little actions.
So I remind my sales team (and yours): Progress is made in the aggregate. Every day, you must be laboring to get your message to as many people, through as many small, simple actions as you can muster within the energy that you possess for that day. You must always be meeting new people, reconnecting with old contacts, and telling anyone who will listen why you are doing what you are doing.
For you shall never know what little action you may have done months ago, when interacting with another little action (of yours or another), and how, when those actions combine, may finally be the spark needed to advance your goals. That spark is what results in your prospects finally sending the “let’s catch up” email or “It’s time for us to get serious about this” email. Or even, in this day and age, that rare phone call.
So, I say this to all those salespeople out there who maybe struggling with the day-to-day repetitive nature of sales (and to my sales team): You are that craftsperson. You are creating that tree where you and others come to exchange ideas. Your job is to help your prospects take a little idea from you, one from another, and combine them until those ideas create something of value for your prospect (which hopefully is what you’re selling).
Do that for people you meet, and for potential customers, and you will always be successful. But you must do that every day, and in a thousand small little ways.
Jabra has announced that all variants in the Jabra Pro 9400 series of DECT wireless headsets are at their end of life date, and are no longer being manufactured as of October 2018. The Pro 9400 headsets will be sold for as long as stock is available.
Recommended Replacement: Jabra Engage Series
In its place, Jabra is recommending the Engage DECT wireless headsets. The Jabra Engage 65 and 75 Series includes a range of Stereo, Mono and Convertible models to enable an easy migration from the Pro 9400. The Jabra Engage Series is engineered to be the world’s most powerful professional range of wireless headsets. Utilizing new, exclusive technology that gives 3x better wireless density – while still maintaining excellent connection quality – Engage helps deliver better conversations to boost customer satisfaction.
The Engage series boasts better sounding calls, more talk time (up to 13 hours!), and better productivity because of the built-in busylights on each headset. Security features going beyond DECT security Step C providing enhanced protection against eavesdropping. A micro-USB charger in the base makes it easier to dock the headset correctly in one simple action and ensure it is charging. With the fast charge feature, you can power the headset to 40% in just 30 minutes. If the battery gets critically low during a call, Jabra Engage can also be charged using a standard wall
charger while you are still on the call.
What is the difference between Engage 65 and Engage 75? Engage 65 connects to desk phones and PCs, and buttons on the base unit are intuitive and easy to use. Engage 75 headsets can connect to five devices simultaneously: 2 USB devices (softphone and/or desk phone), 2 Bluetooth devices and 1 analog desk phone. The base unit is touchscreen.
New to the Engage series are the Convertible models with a smaller ear speaker and 3 included wearing styles: ear hook, neckband and headband. The Convertible model is available in both Engage 65 and Engage 75 variants.
Noisy open offices can lead to unproductive and stressed-out employees ... and, unfortunately, this work environment is prevalent. Organizations should look to headsets as tools to bridge the gap and increase productivity in the workplace. Headsets must meet the needs of employees (who need headsets that are comfortable, convenient, and cancel background noise) and their customers (who need clear conversations, every time they call) to achieve organizational goals.
Plantronics' newest DECT wireless headset series, the Savi 8200, has been built for the human experience. The Savi 8220 features active noise canceling (ANC) that blocks out background noise so you can always stay focused on what’s important. This is the first headset on the market that's designed with ANC for desk phones! And, to further enhance collaboration and communication, these headsets also connect to PCs and mobile phones/tablets. Count on Plantronics technology for rich, people-first collaboration experiences so good that ideas can be shared and heard—wherever, whenever and however they happen.
With the noise-canceling mic, you’ll sound your best even in noisy environments. For the most sensitive environments, you can turn up noise canceling with the close conversation limiting feature (configurable in Plantronics Hub, free download here) for additional privacy. The mic boom is flexible, allowing for optimal placement: two finger widths away from the corner of the user's mouth.
Top Features of the Savi 8220:
*Active Noise Canceling
*UC and Microsoft certified versions
*Conference up to 4 headsets to 1 base unit - great for training in contact centers and also conference calls
*Connect 2 devices together, for conferencing between PC to desk phone; or mobile phone to PC
*13 hours of talk time!
*Ringer on the base (can be disabled, if needed)
*Large leatherette ear cushions and padded leatherette headband
*Roam up to 590 feet away from the base (this depends upon physical environment)
*DECT Security certified: uses the latest standards in DECT wireless security
The Savi 8200 also comes in a single-ear variant, which does not have ANC. And, just like the Savi 8220 headsets, the Savi 8210 comes in UC and Microsoft versions for every user environment.
Is it time to reassess headsets at your organization? Are you looking for high quality professional headsets with superior sound?
Take a look at the Plantronics Savi 8200 headsets, and call one of our headset experts today: 1-866-998-9991.
It’s a scientific fact that leading a sedentary lifestyle can be harmful to one’s health.
The job category of “knowledge worker” – people who handle information as their job – can be considered sedentary, where employees remain seated and desk-bound for 8 or more hours each day. This does not include their commute time to the job … which could be an hour or more each way. Your job (and the time it takes to get there) just may be harming you!
What are the harmful effects of inactivity?
According to an article on the Australian government health department web site, some hazards associated with sitting all day include:
Weakened legs and gluteals, which could lead to falls, and strains when exercising
Hips and back – hip flexor muscles shortened, leading to problems in hip joints; sitting for extended periods of time can cause problems in your back, especially if you have poor posture
Anxiety and depression
Cancer, heart disease, diabetes
Varicose veins, Deep vein thrombosis
Stiff neck and shoulders
In the United States, it’s estimated that 86 percent of workers have desk jobs. This sitting epidemic could be a national health crisis! So, what can be done about this?
The current official U.S.-government issued Physical Activity Guidelines, in place since 2008, says that adults (classified as ages 18-64) who are physically active are less likely to develop chronic diseases than adults who aren’t active – regardless of gender or ethnicity. The Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion reports that the worst thing to do is to avoid activity – any physical activity is better than none, and has health benefits.
Aerobic activity is best for substantial health benefits. Each week, strive for at least 150 minutes (2 hours, 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity (brisk walking, ballroom dancing, doubles tennis, water aerobics); or, 75 minutes (1 hour, 15 minutes) of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity (jogging, singles tennis, jumping rope, aerobic dancing or swimming laps); or a combination of these activities. Doing more than these recommended amounts each week leads to even greater health benefits.
At least twice a week, muscle-strengthening activities that are moderate or high intensity and involve all major muscle groups should be completed. This is defined as lifting weights or using resistance bands. Why is strength training recommended? It protects bone health and muscle mass, makes you stronger and fitter, keeps weight off for good, burns more calories, and helps with balance, coordination and posture — to name a few of the benefits.
New government guidelines are expected to be published by the end of 2018.
Of course, these activities will happen either before or after work; however, it is still possible to incorporate physical activity into even the most sedentary of desk jobs.
Tips to Keep Your Office in Shape:
* Take the stairs instead of the elevator
* Walk over and talk to co-workers, rather than sending an email
Tune out of a distracting environment, and tune into your work, with these headsets from Plantronics. Active Noise Canceling technology has crossed over to the business professional world, due to demand from professionals who require a space to concentrate, as well as headsets with noise-canceling microphones for premium call quality. The Active Noise Canceling (ANC) helps block out distracting sounds, creating a “quiet zone” to enhance productivity, no matter the environment.
According to Plantronics, a study out of the University of California shows that it takes an employee 23 minutes to recover from a distraction and get back to the task at hand, and that a majority of employees get distracted at least once a day. With these real-world statistics in mind, Plantronics created a calculator that helps you get an idea of how much noise is affecting your company’s profitability. Check it out: ROI Calculator
Overview of Plantronics headsets with ANC:
• Use with Desk Phones, PCs, and smartphones/tablets
• Noise-canceling mic with close conversation limiting • Up to 13 hours talk time
• Conference in 3 additional Savi headsets
• UC and Microsoft-certified versions
• MSRP: $459.95
• USB-A or USB-C
• Boomless mic design
• Four microphones detect noise from all directions and separate noise from the speaker’s voice
• Call controls on the headset • Voice alerts • Choice of color: Black or White
• MSRP: $199.95
Voyager Focus UC
• Bluetooth and USB (with included dongle)
• Comfort headband • UC and Microsoft-certified versions
• Smart mic boom: wear boom on either side and maintain right/left stereo performance and locations of volume/track buttons
• Oversized soft leatherette ear cushions
• Headset and Charging Stand available: UC or Microsoft
• MSRP: $279.95
Voyager 6200 UC
• Bluetooth and USB (with included dongle)
• Neckband vibrates to signal an incoming call.
• Ear buds
• Intuitive controls
• Choice of color: Black or Sand
• MSRP: $299.95
Voyager 8200 UC
• Bluetooth and USB (with included dongle)
• No microphone design features a 4-mic array for voice pick-up
• Large ear cushions completely surround the ear
• Choice of color: Black or White
• MSRP: $379.95
• Foldable ear cushions for travel
• In-line Call Controls
• Smart Sensor Technology lets you answer the call by placing the headset on your head
• UC and Microsoft-certified versions
• MSRP: $179.99
All of these headsets, with the exception of the Savi 8220, come with carrying cases to protect the headsets in and out of the office.
If you’re not sure which Plantronics ANC headset is right for you, give us a call at 1-866-998-9991, and our headset experts can help!