How to Chose Fur For Teddy Bears

Let’s talk now on How to Chose Fur For Teddy Bears. If you are a maker that makes cute little things that have fur, this video is for you.
This week we visit a company that sells eco-friendly fur for teddy bears and stuffed animals.
Intercal shares with us details about the market and the right type of fur for your furry friends.

BjD Doll Making

We are creating a whole series of virtual workshops for makers. don’t forget to check on the site.

This video talks about BjD Doll Making. This interview is with bjd doll maker Sarah Seiter. Sarah is one of the few American ball jointed doll makers and she shares with us about her business, her dolls and the techniques she uses. Hosted by Shahar Boyayan

How to Run a Jewelry Store

Keep an eye for next year’s classes because we have some serious beading coming up.

For now we invite you to watch this interview we did a while back talking about how to run a jewelry business. More specific a beading store.
http://www.spillthebeanstv.com See how smart entrepreneurs run a jewelry store. Tremaine Fenton shares with you how she runs a successful bead store, her challenges and advice. With host Shahar Boyayan, marketing advisor from BuzzBooster

Learning Does not Have to Be Boring

Who can watch one more talking head tutorial online? How boring is that? No wonder words like learning, classes and courses are actually avoided by marketers when promoting a new class.

Learning has been boring and the same for a very long time. It does not make a difference if you are inside a classroom or watching online.

Online is even worse because although you have many places to go to improve your skills, most of them provide the same exact videos, with low quality, superficial content and most of the time very boring.

This is why Curious Mondo comes with a new proposal. A more relaxed environment, with high quality, in-depth content, using the best livestream technology where you are invited not only to watch but to participate and shape the courses according to your needs.

Our renowned Instructors are active in their areas and bring updated and practical information.

At Curious Mondo the conversation continues in our groups on social media so you can also share your opinions and creations.

All this interaction and access to experts provides a fun way for busy professionals to improve their skills in an independent format.

Due to our mission to bring knowledge and new skills to everyone, we livestream courses for free when they are created. Anyone, anywhere can watch and benefit from them and follow their path to their dreams.

People that buy our own demand classes make all this possible and even without knowing are impacting the World.

The online World has this potential: Break geographic barriers, multiply knowledge, propel people into new paths and transform the lives of millions of people. Curious Mondo is leading the way!

courses at Curious Mondo

Virtual Training on Human Resources

Looking for Virtual Training on Human Resources?

Working with people can be challenging. Knowing when to hire, when to keep and how to retain a good employee is a key metric for success.

Curious Mondo now provides virtual training to corporations.

Just in the human resources department we have over 12 in-depth courses.

Virtual training is a fantastic option for your team to learn on their own terms and a very affordable option.

Check our available training and get our free e-book on how to unleash productivity here.

productivity

Feeling Overwhelmed is Your Own Fault

By Beth Stratman

The world moves so quickly these days, it feels hard to keep up. With the proliferation of available information, you can trick yourself into believing that you need to keep up with all the information and happenings. However, it isn’t simply paying attention to everything  that’s going on that makes you productive and valuable and keeps you on track with your business; it’s staying attuned to the things you’ve identified as important and relevant to your business that keeps you productive and on target.

Here are some tips for reducing feelings of overwhelm and keeping yourself on track with the things you’ve identified as important:

  • Get comfortable with the fact that most information is just noise. Just because information is accessible doesn’t mean it’s relevant to you.
  • Determine what’s fundamentally important to maximize your business and yourself. The really important things for business tend to be the basics: mission, vision, values, current goals, key performance indicators (KPIs), key relationships, and professional development for you and your staff.
  • Base your everyday tasks and activities what’s fundamentally important. Look at your calendar. Do your day-to-day appointments and scheduled blocks for projects etc. reflect the fundamentals as they relate to your position? Whether you’re the CEO or the VP of Human Resources, there are things you ought to be doing to further the company’s current goals. Are you?  If you find items that have low value related to the company’s goals, figure out what to do about them, including delegating them to others who have the capability and could grow from the opportunity.
  • Reduce your connection to irrelevant information. Doing simple things to decrease distraction can reduce feelings of overwhelm, like turning off pop-up email notifications, creating email rules that dispense with low priority email messages, and unsubscribing from email lists that you rarely find helpful.
  • Train your staff about your response priorities. Which topics are front-burner for you? What counts as an “emergency” when they should definitely interrupt you? What’s your response time for texts versus email versus phone calls and when should they use each method of communication?
  • Build time into your schedule when you are intentionally available for drop-in conversations.  This presumes that you set aside “do not disturb” time when you are focused on strategic and project work. Having “office hours” when you’re readily available encourages others to access you on your terms, not theirs.
  • Find root causes to other disruptions or time wasters. “Fires” usually occur when they wasn’t a good process in place for handling a situation. Look at ways to create or refine processes for handling most things that are likely to challenge your staff, so they learn to do things without you.
  • Question whether you really need to have or attend the meetings on your calendar. Maybe you do, but it’s good to review whether meetings are really a good use of your time.

Practice seeing through the “charms’ and “alarms” of life to keep your center. Knowing what’s important and saying “no” to the rest is the key to reducing feelings of overwhelm.

Feeling Overwhelmed

The age of experience

We live in the age of experience!

We need to feel in order to “get it”

That is why we need to re-shape the way we teach, we need to re-shape education.

Things have changed exponentially over the years in every field but with education the opposite has happened.

If you were to place a 200 year old doctor in today’s operation room he/she would not be able to even recognize most of the tools. On the other hand, if you did the same thing, get a 200 year old teacher and place in today’s classroom, this person would feel comfortable in that environment.

Pushing information, memorizing and fitting tests standards is not how people learn anymore.

Education now needs to bring experiences, emotions and stories which are like food to our brain. You connect experience with content.

Why do you think games are so popular and by 2020 it is said that our lives will be 80% gamified?

Because they provide experience, story line, emotions and when we learn a process we move into another phase where that process will be modified and then you evolve again to a new level.

Just look at the Pokemon Go craze and see why it is appealing to people of all ages. Virtual little cute creatures can populate a virtual reality environment. You go and discover these creatures like in a treasure hunt, then you help them evolve into other beings. You fight to train them and you join a team which makes you belong. Take into account that this game does not even provide instructions on how to be played. Making mystery part of its lure.

This experience is fulfilling and makes people learn all about the game and its creatures.

Education today needs to be exciting, allowing participation and morph into something else with this participation. It needs to create content around stories and experiences. This is how it is going. This is exciting.

It also need to reach people when they want, how they want and where they want. so the formats cannot be put in a box. They need to blend. In person, virtual, exchanging points of views. Not one expert telling what needs to be done but experts facilitating a process that provides a new experience.

This is true to kids as well with adults seeking to improve their skills.

That is our quest at Curious Mondo. Bring a new type of education while at the same time allowing people everywhere to get access to this exciting way of learning and allowing them access to the expert and access to help guide each course.

Education Concept

All Eyes Are Watching You

By Annette Pieper

I was riding on the back of an all-terrain vehicle through a forest of quaking aspen in central Utah a while back, enjoying life in the outdoors, kicking back and taking in the scenery. As we drove along through the quaking trees, I noticed how the knot holes in the aspen trees look like eyes. Suddenly, it felt as if a million eyes were watching me. It was kind of eerie.
It dawned on me that in business, as you put yourself out there and market yourself; a million eyes are watching you. You have much greater influence than you realize, especially with social media and web based presence. As your exposure grows, so does the amount of eyes watching you. Even if people are not in direct contact with you, as in signing up for your newsletter or becoming a client or customer, they are still watching. They may be spreading the word about you and your business as well in either a positive or negative manner.
Is that a spooky thought for you? Exciting? Here are a few tips to make sure that you stay on the exciting side of the equation and not the spooky side.

Social Media:

Do not air personal family, friend or business conflicts on twitter or Facebook. There are approximately 350 million users on Facebook and even if you have only 30 friends, your posts show up with those friends, they have the opportunity to share your post on their wall so your post may end up being viewed by thousands of people. Furthermore, anyone that you have unfriended can still see your posts and anyone who has sent you a friend request, even if you have not accepted it can see your posts. And what about twitter threads. Whew…that could add up to a lot of people.
Keep your complaining to a minimum if at all. It’s ok to write about a frustration but add the upside or silver lining at the end. What did you learn? What’s good about it? Inspire people rather than expire them. There’s enough negativity out there, do not feed that fire.
Make most of your posts value added or as a positive connection point. Social media is about connection. It gives us an opportunity to add value and support to others and to receive it in return. It gives us the opportunity to connect with people outside of our local community so keep it on the positive side.
Networking:

How you show up at a networking event has a great effect on how you are perceived. I was on a tele-class for professional speakers the other day and the teacher said that people make 11 assumptions about you in the first 11 seconds of seeing you. WOW! Eleven assumptions, probably before you even blurt out a word. Be sure to dress how you want to be viewed. If you are a plumber and you want your potential market to view you as a hard working individual, then nice jeans and a polo shirt with your company logo on it may be the right combo. If you are a Real Estate professional or accountant, probably office/casual would suffice. Watch the shoes, people notice worn out shoes. Sure, they may be comfortable but seriously, make sure they send the right message.
Grooming is important. Hair, nails, teeth, breath, body odor, they are all important. Many times we don’t think people will notice the small details. Wrong! Sometimes the small stuff stands out like a big sore thumb.
How you speak is important too. Speak with confidence and passion about your business. Focus more on the other person rather than throwing up all over them about your business. Have you ever experienced that? The person you are talking to is not really interested at all in creating business relationships, they are just interested in letting you know about their business and not interested in yours at all. It’s all about them and they just throw up all over you. Gross! Let that not be you.
Videos:
Be sure that your videos are relevant to your business. Don’t post your personal family videos to your business channel unless you are tying it into your business.
Make sure that your videos portray the image of you and your business that you want people to perceive. Remember the eleven assumptions in eleven minutes can happen on video too.
Don’t film in a disorganized environment such as a messy office. Clean it up or find a better spot to film, unless it is relevant to the message being shared.
These are just a few ways that we show up in front of people. If you have a website, eyes are watching you there too. Pictures that you are tagged in may just show up in Google images. When was the last time you Googled yourself? Just for fun, Google your name or go to Google images and type in your name and see what shows up. It may be eye opening.
As you market your business online and off, keep in mind the people who are watching you and the assumptions they may be creating about you. Set your intention to show up as positive and inspiring others. To quote from the Spiderman movie “With great exposure comes great responsibility”…oops that’s my quote.

social media

Check Annette Pieper’s training at Curious Mondo

Does Your Back Ache From Bending Over Backwards for Your Employees?

Being the boss is tough. With all the information available on how to motivate and engage employees, without being a micro-manager or a bully, it can be a bit confusing trying to determine what exactly an effective boss is like today. A big part of becoming a good boss is understanding and creating healthy boundaries.

What is a boundary? A boundary is an imaginary line that exists between you and your employees. It marks the difference between your organizational role, authority, responsibility and status, etc. and theirs. And by virtue of this, it defines acceptable behaviors in a given situation, and it gives you permission to tell others what to do and what to expect of them as they do it.

How do you know if you have unhealthy boundaries with employees? If your boundaries at work are non-existent or too loose, you’re probably the type who is very concerned about whether your employees like you. That is, your primary desire, motivation, and basis for your decision-making centers on making your employees like you. And because you want them to like you, you believe if you take care of them and even protect them, they will like you more and work that much harder. After all, it’s all about relationships, right?

Yes, it is about relationships – healthy ones – with good boundaries. Boundaries that recognize and communicate that you are not your employees’ equal at work and that it’s your job to tell them what to do and to provide them information about why they need to do it and how well they did it. If you are overly concerned with being liked, you’re focusing on you and not on the company’s goals and interests (which is the job of management). (This is called co-dependence or “letting the tail wag the dog”.) In short, you are not fulfilling your role as boss and are bending over backwards too far.

If you find yourself walking on eggshells around employees in the pursuit of their happiness and at the expense of the company’s interests . . . . If you balk at requiring/asking your employees to do the not so fun parts of their jobs . . . . If you are avoiding a conversation about performance or conduct issues because you’re afraid you might upset an employee. . . . here are 4 things you can do to create healthier boss/employee boundaries:

  • First, consciously step into your role as boss with no apologies. This means, you are the “decider”. It’s your job to set expectations and sometimes to have difficult conversations: that’s what you’re paid to do. You don’t need to be a jerk about it. Just be as clear as possible. Your employees already expect this by virtue of your role as the boss. The authority and permission to tell others what to do is built into the boss/employee relationship. (Repeat: you don’t need to be a jerk about it.) They’re waiting for it because even they know when they are pushing boundaries. They are probably surprised you haven’t already addressed certain issues with them.
  •  Second, strive to be respected instead of liked. You might be able to do both, but garnering respect first and foremost forms the basis of a healthy boss/employee relationship. To gain respect, you must be firm, fair, and consistent, so your employees know what to expect of you on a regular basis. And yes, your employees won’t like everything you hold them accountable to, but they’ll understand it and expect it.
  • Third, don’t actively seek to be friends with your employees. They might be great people, but to maintain a healthy leader/employee boundary, you shouldn’t see each other tipsy at happy hour or know minute details of your current or past relationships. Concentrate on the work  with occasional superficial chit chat.
  • Fourth, get better at handling conflict and hard conversations. Being the boss means you will deal with situations where most people don’t want to change the way they do things. Conflict abounds. When you shy away from conflict, you’re trading the possibility of something new and full of potential, for staying stuck in the present situation that you may think is safe but which reflects your inability to adapt and your lack of faith in others to do the same.

To better cope with the discomfort of being the boss, find peers – other managers, business owners, CEOs – to commiserate and celebrate with. It can be lonely being in charge, and these peers can relate to the trials and tribulations of being a boss and offer advice and support.

Your employees were hired to accomplish work in your company. They don’t mind doing the job – they applied for it. And healthy, defined boundaries will create clarity, making your work together easier and more productive.

Beth Stratman

Beth Stratman is an author, speaker, consultant, podcast host and one of the instructors at Curious Mondo. Check one of Beth’s training on Creating a Distraction Proof Workplace