Free Internet Resources And Strategies For Writers

Most writers these days are switched on to the everyday benefits of the Internet. Communicating with editors, potential readers and fellow writers has never been easier and the millions of pages of information at our fingertips have revolutionized the way we do our research.

Beyond its more obvious uses, the Internet can enhance all aspects of a writer’s life and there are plenty of free resources available if you know where to look for them.

Free Software for Writers

New writers are often tempted to rush out and buy expensive software, just at a time when money is tight. Why not let the Internet provide you with some free tools instead. Many of the big names like Google and Yahoo are fighting to provide surfers with the best free packages, which is great news for us.

If you know where to look, you can get free online word processors and spreadsheets, allowing you to access your precious documents from any computer and work on them with other collaborators. New personalized search tools increase the efficiency of your Internet searches and mean you never lose a valuable piece of information again.

Use Your Online Community

Whatever your area of interest, it’s bound to have a community somewhere on the web. Forums are a great way for writers to conduct research, gauge public opinion and promote their own work. Writing can be a lonely occupation and there are plenty of forums for writers, offering helpful advice and much needed support.

Speak Up

Writers need to get their voices heard and the Internet provides a great platform from which to shout. There are hundreds of free blog hosting services online, giving you space to rant, inform, entertain or promote yourself. The podcast provides another exciting new medium for writers to communicate with their audience and it is relatively simple to make one of your own using free online resources.

Develop a World View

Writers can’t work in a vacuum and inspiration and creativity comes from interaction with real people and environments. Even so, the Internet can help you to keep your finger on the pulse and develop an awareness of the world around you. Sites like the BBC’s excellent news portal provide up to the minute news, views, and analysis, together with opportunities to participate and debate.

Have Fun

While the Internet can provide unwelcome distractions for writers, used in the right way, some of these activities can provide inspiration and promote creativity. Write a 50,000 word novel against the clock, release your books into the wild or collect and share your favorite bits of the web with others. These are just some of the things you can do for free to keep your creative juices flowing!

4 Strategies For Effectively Outsourcing Your Network Marketing Projects

You can only take your business so far by yourself. You might be able to create a six-figure business all on your own, but there comes a point in time when the only way to scale your business is to hire some help. In online marketing, there are a lot of tasks which anyone with a brain can do, but these tasks often take up a lot of time. If you have a budget and time is the limiting factor in growing your home based business, then consider giving these tasks to someone else so you can free up your time to do something more enjoyable or profitable.

Outsourcing isn’t as easy as it sounds though – here are five strategies for effective outsourcing so you don’t waste your time and money.

1.    Be willing to pay for quality.

In other words, don’t be cheap. You might find someone to design a banner for you for $5 or someone to write you a 500-word article for a buck. Before you pat yourself on the back for finding a good deal, think about why the service provider in question is able or willing to charge such a low price for their services. If you do somehow manage to find a good service provider for a low price, then do whatever it takes to hold on to them.

2.    Do background checks.

I don’t mean checking criminal records – I mean checking portfolios and testimonials. For example, forums are a great place to find service providers. Some forums have tons of service providers hanging around and it can get tough to sift through the pile to find good ones. Before you hire one from a forum, check out who their testimonials are from – are they from reputable and established members, or are they from new recruits? Also, check out their old posts – are they helpful and friendly, or are they not so helpful or argumentative? You should trust your own judgment when looking at portfolios and testimonials.

3.    Be specific when placing your order.

This strategy is especially applicable to design and content creation jobs. Some graphic designers and writers have a knack for knowing what their employers want, but others don’t, and that’s not a bad thing. Make yourself as clear as possible when describing your project. This way, if things don’t turn out that great, it’s their fault, not yours. If you give your service provider complete autonomy, then you might not get what you’re looking for.

4.    Be a good employer.

It’s not always the service provider’s fault if the deal goes sour. Sometimes, it’s the employer’s fault for being too demanding, for having a strong sense of entitlement, or for being unreasonable. Be assertive when making your demands, but also be understanding regarding your service provider’s needs. Keep in mind that there is life outside of the Internet world – as in, things can happen in the “real” world which may cause a hiccup in your project. Don’t be overly critical when something doesn’t go as planned, but do be supportive and full of praise when things do go well.

Three Strategies for Employee Career Development

Are you presently at loss as to how to go about developing the strategies you can use for your career development? Are you one of those employees feeling trapped and unappreciated in your organization? Do you no longer derive any sense of meaning or purpose from what you do for a living? We in the human resource practice have often observed and counseled, questioned and even helped employees in this kind of situation with requisite career advice. It is therefore for this reason that human resource practitioners have come up with career development strategies that should assist employees in their career planning and growth. These strategies when utilized bring about greater employee self-awareness. Further it brings about clearer view of workers long-term goals. The main objective in this article is to highlight the strategies for employee career development that can propel smart workers in whatever career they might have chosen in their life.

What are those career development strategies that any employee should utilize to survive in this information age? How should a worker desirous of choosing a career that enables him live a happy and full life go about doing so? Detailed below are these strategies.

· Discovery of your primary aim: The first strategy for any employee is to identify the primary purpose in life. By this is meant a picture of the kind of life you wish to live. What is it that you want to be most in the world? What is it that you love doing most and will not tire even if you continue doing it forever? You need to ask yourself questions to enable you find answers to how to discover your primary aim. Without asking relevant questions you cannot get answers. I had always wanted to be a writer. Though I started late, but I am doing what I always wanted to do which is writing. This I do through dissemination of information on human relations practice and blogging. I achieved this by asking myself questions to discover the answers. What is your own vision? What is your primary purpose in life? Your purpose or your vision in a period of time. Your purpose or vision is a continuous thing. It is something that shapes your life and it is a life time process. An employee who has not done this will only accept whatever career that is thrust upon her. She will never be happy in whatever career she might have chosen. Your career is your life. It determines how you want to live your life. You therefore need to have a picture of what you want your life to be like (your vision) and this will guide you into your choice of career. Primary aim helps your awareness about yourself. It helps you to get clear about certain truths about yourself and how you should live your life.

· Creation of Standards:This is another strategy for career development any smart employee must utilize in the 21st century. By standard is meant benchmarks to measure your performance against. Without a clearly defined vision of your life, you will have no standards by which you can evaluate your role in whatever career you have chosen nor any criteria with which to gauge and measure whether you are in the right career (or considering to pursue one) which will work for you. No matter your primary aim, if the career you have chosen or intend to pursue does not mesh with your vision you can never be happy. That is where standards come in. The only way by which you could evaluate yourself therefore is by looking at where you are in your career (work, time, money, culture, relationships) and measuring it against the picture of who you wish to be. It is therefore based on these benchmarks/standards that decisions and choices concerning your career should be made. This you do by envisioning model(s) which will then serve as your measuring rod. A model is the prototype of the kind of life you wish to live. You will create rules by which you will live your life. The rules and the standards should go hand in hand. You cannot have one without the other.

· Identification of your passions, interests, skills, abilities and experience:Another key career development strategy for a smart employee is the identification of your main passions, skills, interests and abilities. You need to ask questions. What are those things that you love doing? For example writing, speaking, helping others etc. What are those innate skills that you possess or have acquired in life that distinguish you from other human beings? For example interpersonal skill, management, communication, IT, organization etc. What are those talents that you possess or have acquired that distinguish you from other employees? The experiences you have acquired over time that makes you different. No two individuals are created the same. We are all created differently. Identification of these key attributes will therefore assist you in your career development. This when married with your primary aim helps in your career development.

Identification of primary purpose or aim is however a process. The bid to envision your life is a journey. It is during the journey that you will identify your skills, passion, talents, interests and experiences that are compatible with your vision in life. You should therefore be alive and aware as they are being identified. They are the attributes that will help you in developing your career and consequently in shaping your life. If your purpose is to be a writer, what are those skills, interests, passions and experiences you need to acquire to be one? To be a writer, you need to love writing. You need to love reading and acquiring knowledge. You need be observant. Your communication skill must be exceptional.

From the foregoing therefore, the application of these three strategies for career development will assist a smart employee in making the best out of his chosen career. These strategies are to assist the employee in reinventing his life such that he will live it the way he wanted. Just as it is beneficial to a job seeker who is already gainfully employed, it is equally beneficial to one who is still searching. The strategies when utilized will guide you in your career path. Having identified your primary aim, created your vision and in the process identified your passion, interests, skills and experience, you will be able to identify the best career you will be suited and consequently work on it. Having worked on your career you will be able to work on your life because your career will ultimately affect your life.