May 2012 - Posts

Tame Unwanted Facebook Photos
Thursday, May 31, 2012 8:05 PM
Putting your best face forward on Facebook is more than mere vanity. Controlling your image on the social media giant is as critical to your professional reputation as impeccable references and a polished resume. Put another way: don't try job hunting...
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Got Clutter? Deciding What to Keep, What to Purge
Thursday, May 31, 2012 7:45 PM

Minimalists of the world, this post isn't for you. You already turn a steely eye on all items and paperwork, paring down your life to the strict essentials. This post is for anyone with a kitchen drawer full of doodads and closets that might generously be called...full.

If you crave a simple, streamlined home and work space, but are undone by deciding what to keep, what to toss, check out our round up of resources. You'll be clutter free in no time.

Paperwork: Piles of papers are a major source of stress. Figuring out what papers need to be kept, and which you can happily toss is easy using our past post File or Toss? A Handy Guide for Assessing Your Paperwork.  You'll learn tips the time-frame for keeping certain documents, which papers need to be kept for a lifetime and which papers can be circular-filed immediately.

Kitchen: Is your pantry a repository of dusty canned goods and spices past their expiration date? Tame kitchen clutter with the useful tips here  and here.  While you're at it, consider organizing your kitchen with an eye towards wellness and healthy eating with the tips in our past post Organizing Your Kitchen for Wellness. 

Closets: Are your closets full to bursting? Create breathing room with the tips in our past post Organizing Your Closet for Sweater Weather.  Don't let the name fool you, this post has closet cleaning tips for more than just sweater season. So if you can't figure out where the heck your bathing suits and flip flops are in your avalanche of clothes, this post is for you as well.

How do you assess what to keep, what to toss? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

 

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To Tag or Not: Etiquette for Facebook Photos
Thursday, May 31, 2012 7:39 PM

Smartphone cameras, Instagram and Hipstamatic: the ease of capturing digital photos is creating a nation of paparazzi-like photogs, snapping away every minute of the day. But while celebrities court cameras and the white-hot spotlight, not everyone appreciates being photographed, or tagged in images online.

To Tag or Not?

When is it okay to tag people on Facebook, or other photo sharing sites, and when should you hold back? Ask two different people and you're likely to get two different answers. Some people believe you should always ask for permission before you take or post photos. Ditto for tagging people. Others think posting photos (as long as they are flattering) is always fine. Still others have different rules for posting photos of young children then they do adults.

Since no hard-and-fast rules exist, use commonsense. Our past post, Photo Finish: What to Keep Off of Facebook,  helps spell out what images to avoid posting online.

To avoid further pitfalls, check out the advice in these useful resources: 

Finally, if you are concerned about what photos of you may be popping up on Facebook, check out our newest productivity tool: the Pendaflex Tag Tamer. This free, user-friendly app easily finds and removes unwanted photos. Never be embarrassed by a Facebook photo again.

How do you decide what photos to post and tag on Facebook? Has anyone ever tagged you in an embarrassing photo? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

 

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Photo Finish: What to Keep Off of Facebook
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 8:59 PM

We've all heard the horror stories of unwanted or embarrassing photos popping up on Facebook. Witness the case of a Florida fireman who was recently investigated after his boss saw pictures of his minor children on Facebook posing with alcoholic beverages. Puts your own recent "bad hair day" photo into perspective doesn't it?

Knowing that the new Facebook Timeline format makes photos more visible and discoverable than ever, we recently launched the Pendaflex Tag Tamer, a free, user-friendly app for finding and removing unwanted photos.

The Tag Tamer streamlines the search process, letting users search for photos by month and year as well as by others tagged in the same photo. So say good-bye to manually scrolling through countless photos and hello to a one-click search that gathers photos in one easy-to-see window.

Once you have your photos neatly corralled, review them for suitability. While individuals may differ on what constitutes an acceptable photo, experts offer these useful guidelines.

  • No nudity or scantily clad images
  • Think twice about posting pictures of alcohol consumption, even if you're of legal age. Ditto for tobacco use.
  • No illegal activities
  • Think twice about images with apparel showcasing political or religious slogans.
  • Keep intimate shots intimate (birth pictures, children in bathtubs, couples kissing, etc. fall into this category)
  • Delete image that make you uncomfortable with your appearance (bad hair day, eyes closed, goofy facial expression.)

Use commonsense when reviewing pictures, asking yourself the "New York Times" question: how would I feel if this image was on the front page of the New York Times? Then, delete or keep accordingly.

How do you manage your images on Facebook? Has anyone ever tagged you in an embarrassing photo? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

 

 

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Tame Unwanted Facebook Photos
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 8:57 PM

Smartphones, with their built-in digital cameras, have made for a snap-happy world. Last New Year's Eve alone an estimated 750 million pictures were posted to Facebook. Odds are not every photo was flattering: too much "Auld Lang Syne" can look pretty embarrassing in the light of day. 

Given how easy it is to be tagged in Facebook photos for the world to see, it's critical to manage how your image is presented on the social media giant. Putting your best face forward on Facebook is more than just mere vanity; it's as critical to your professional reputation as impeccable references and a polished resume. Consider the following:

  • Recruiters and hiring managers are increasingly using Facebook to screen prospective hires.
  • Ninety percent of hiring managers check out potential candidates' social media accounts.
  • Seventy percent of hiring managers have rejected a candidate because of inappropriate Facebook content.
  • Facebook's new Timeline format makes photos more visible and discoverable than ever.

So how to keep all those "bad hair day" photos off Facebook once and for all? Try the Pendaflex Tag Tamer, a free, user-friendly app for finding and removing unwanted photos.

The Tag Tamer streamlines the search process, letting users search for photos by month and year as well as by others tagged in the same photo. The Pendaflex Tag tamer is faster, and more efficient, than the Facebook default method for removing pictures.

Job hunters, college grads with an active "virtual" life and anyone with friends and family who are always snapping digital pictures will want to visit the Pendaflex Facebook page to download the free app. Get ready to say good-bye to unwanted or embarrassing photos for good.

How do you manage your images on Facebook? Has anyone ever tagged you in an embarrassing photo? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

 

 

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Are Productivity Tools Making You Less Productive?
Monday, May 14, 2012 8:57 PM
Technological advances have produced a tsunami of productivity and time management tools. Gadgets, tablets, and apps galore allow for the possibility of 24/7 connectivity. But do these tools make you more or less productive? A recent New York Times piece...
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Pinterest Explained
Monday, May 07, 2012 9:00 PM

Chances are you've caught some of the buzz around the latest social media addiction Pinterest. After all, with 17 million plus new users, it joins the ranks of the top three social media sites along with giants Facebook and its nearest rival Tumblr. So why is everyone suddenly "pinning" and how can you get in on the action?

Pinterest works as a virtual "pin board" and allows users to collect and categorize images. The site is by invitation only, but don't let that scare you off; you can request an invitation from Pinterest and one generally materializes in your in-box a few days later.

Pinterest is right up our organizational alley. Simple, streamlined and easy to use, Pinterest is the perfect counterpart to paper organizing. The site allows users to readily and easily capture digital images, be they home décor inspiration, recipes or fashion. 

The site allows for simple categorization, images are "pinned" to specific boards that they user creates. There is also a social networking component that allows users to seek inspiration from others or to follow like-minded pinners.

Organizing is why we get up in the morning and between Pinterest and Pendaflex, storing the bits and pieces of one's life, be they digital ephemera or paper, has never been easier. And we like easy almost as much as we like organization.

For more on Pinterest, read:

Have you jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon? How do you organize your pin boards? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

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Turn Your Dream Career into Reality
Thursday, May 03, 2012 8:55 PM
Do you head off to work each morning to tackle your dream job? Chances are the answer is no. The lure of a steady paycheck and inertia are often what keeps people reporting to work day in and day out. While paying your mortgage and clothing your kids...
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Happiness How-To
Wednesday, May 02, 2012 8:48 PM

Happiness is on your mind: last month's post How to Be Happy At Work got our readers clicking like crazy. After all, who doesn't want to be happy at work? So many hours of each day are spent at our desks, if we're not happy at work; we're spending a large part of our day feeling unhappy indeed.

We know that our tips on cultivating happiness at work boost your happiness quotient because you told us so. Ready for more ideas?

No one gives happiness advice like Gretchen Rubin, creator of the blog and book The Happiness Project.  Rubin devoted a calendar year to both studying happiness and trying to boost her happiness levels with specific steps each month. Rubin's entire web site has great, user-friendly advice; we particularly like a recent post, Feel Grateful for the Basics. In it, Rubin examines the "lost wallet syndrome," which is the phenomenon of taking for granted the things that make our life easy, pleasant and provide happiness. Only once those things are "lost" do we realize their crucial role in our happiness. Bottom line: appreciate what's good in your life; everybody has blessings so take the time to count them.

We also like the advice from the Zen Habits, a blog about simple living. In the post A Powerful Three-Step Algorithm for Happiness, http://bit.ly/JdKZj1 the author recommends spending the day doing three simple things: 1) taking the time to appreciate everyone you encounter, 2) smiling and making eye-contact and 3) trying to express appreciation and love to all you encounter. Sounds simple but when was the last time you really took the time to express simple appreciation to those you love for their role in your life. Bottom line: happiness is contagious, spread it to others and get it back in spades.

Finally, you know us: organization is our reason d'être and we like to think organized people are happier people.  Think about it: organized people are less stressed, more productive and have more time to spend on passions and people. So go ahead and add a little happiness to your life by getting organized!

Do you think it's possible to increase happiness? What is your surefire way of boosting happiness for yourself? For others? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

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Got Paperwork? Managing Your Active Files
Tuesday, May 01, 2012 8:52 PM
Paper may be going the way of the dinosaur for some-witness the U.S. Government's recent announcement that its 73 million annual social security payments will now be issued electronically instead of by paper check-but for many, paper is still king...
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Arguing Productively
Tuesday, May 01, 2012 8:45 PM

Parents of bickering siblings may wish their quarrelsome kiddies would just stop arguing already, but the fine art of how to disagree agreeably is a crucial skill.

Too often arguing is seen as counterproductive, or emotions are allowed to trump reason and arguing becomes combative. When people disagree disagreeably, the opportunity to achieve consensus or to come up with a winning idea is lost. Done properly, arguing has upside.

Argue to Communicate

Gun shy about arguing? Look at disagreeing as just another way to communicate. In How to Disagree Agreeably,  Real Simple Magazine offers a primer on how to compromise, clear the air and fight fair. Tips include: wait until your calm, pick your battles, be respectful and consider compromise, among others. Read on for in depth strategies on how to disagree with everyone from your boss, to your co-workers to your significant other.

Argue to Innovate

Arguing can be constructive, rather than destructive. Fast Company profiles one company that uses arguing, rather than brainstorming, to generate out-of-the box thinking. In Innovation Is About Arguing, Not Brainstorming. Here's How To Argue Productively,  employees at one design shop chronicle how they use the model of "Argue. Discuss. Argue. Discuss." as the "special sauce" that allows for continual innovation. The goal? Deliberative discourse that achieves allows people to work together to solve a common problem versus trying to "win."

To work, deliberative discourse relies on certain key points including:

  • No hierarchy. All players are welcome to voice ideas and opinions.
  • Say "no, because..." Offer an explanation of your no, this both soothes ruffled feathers and opens the door to dialogue.
  • Diverse perspectives. Curate your group so different viewpoints are represented.
  • Focus on common goal. Find the common ground and avoid dwelling on the differences that might drive you apart.
  • Have fun. Enough said!

 

Do you ever argue constructively? What are your tips for keeping arguments agreeable versus disagreeable? Share your thoughts here and on the Pendaflex Facebook page.

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About Beyond Folders™

Beyond FoldersTM is written by a team of Pendaflex associates passionate about time management, communications, productivity and workplace organization.  Believing in  "continuous improvement" on both a personal and professional level, they share their unique perspectives on subjects of common interest to our readers.

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