You’re already a business owner, but let’s say that you want to pick up some new skills. You want to be known as an expert in a new field, and you’re pretty dedicated to doing so. Perhaps you’re familiar with the 10,000 hours rule, which attempts to explain how someone becomes a master of a particular craft. Well, we hate to burst your bubble, but this rule might not be as simple as it sounds.
What the 10,000 Hour Rule Is
The 10,000 hour rule claims that in order to learn a craft and develop world-class skill, one has to have at least 10,000 hours of experience working with the skill. The original report, published in 1993, found that the most accomplished students at a music academy in Berlin had put in an average of 10,000 hours of practice by the time they turned 20 years old. It seems simple enough, right? You put in plenty of practice and you can possess a world-class skill.
Why it Might Be Wrong
In his new book, Anders Ericsson (who worked on the original report), along with his co-author Robert Pool, attempt to further understand and isolate the science behind the 10,000 hour rule. They came to a number of conclusions concerning the nature of the initial study:
- There’s nothing special about 10,000 hours: The number 10,000 was chosen specifically because it was a nice, rounded number. Plus, regardless of how skilled they were, the musicians tested were nowhere near their peak, or “world class,” by the time they reached 20 years old. It’s been proven that pianists tend to reach their peak at around 30 years old, so the 10,000 rule isn’t quite true.
- 10,000 was only the average: By proxy, if you put in 10,000 hours of effort, you’ll only be meeting the average skill level of those who are working toward the same goal. Thus, you can’t be considered “world class” at all. Other studies have shown that it can take as many as ten years to reach a goal.
- Practice isn’t enough: It was found that investing time and practice into a task doesn’t necessarily make you better at it; rather, it’s the quality of the practice that yields results. This “deliberate practice” pushes the practitioner beyond their comfort zone and forces them to up their game.
The Lesson: Practice Makes Perfect, Not Necessarily Time
There are a few lessons that can be learned from the 10,000 hour rule, but none of them actually have anything to do with 10,000 hours of practice specifically. They can still, nonetheless, be very helpful when learning a new skill and applying it to your life.
- Train the right way: You can dramatically improve your own skills if you’re diligent about it, but only if you approach it in a productive way. For example, a writer who’s trying to develop their skills can’t improve if they write while the television is turned on.
- Practice, practice, practice: Regardless if you spend 500 hours or 10,000 hours honing a craft, you’ll be improving your skills. After all, practice is the only real way to improve, and regardless of how much time you invest into it, you’ll see results.
- There’re no limitations: Regardless of where you stand professionally, there’s always room for self-improvement. You can always reach for loftier goals, and once you start working on a skill, keep working at it. You’ll likely see your hard work pay off.
We think it’s safe to say that you can’t become an expert in a craft overnight, and that even successful business owners have skills that they can dramatically improve by focusing on the right things.
A hacker group claims that they have collected over 250 million user accounts and passwords from Apple iCloud. There is some truth to this as reported by the folks at ZDNet. For the complete story, please CLICK HERE.
We highly recommend that you update your Apple iCloud password and turn on two factor authentication as an additional security measure. Since iCloud ties into your iPhone, Mac, iPad and all of their online services, you do not want to have your account compromised. May users have never changed their password since they setup their account years ago. Time to do so!
If you need any help with your account management, please call our friendly support staff at 877-NET-KING.
And remember, change all of your passwords on a regular basis, do not use the same password on multiple sites and use complex passwords!
A mouse can be very handy when it comes to navigating around the documents you have to work on, but it can also slow you down. Fortunately, key command shortcuts exist for situations just like these, and as Windows 10 has continued to improve, more shortcuts have been included to accomplish more tasks with improved efficiency.
Quick Access to the Start Menu
Take, for instance, the Start menu. Almost anyone who has sat at a computer knows that by clicking the Windows icon in the bottom left-hand corner, a comprehensive menu of your available content is revealed. However, for those those cases when a mouse is unavailable and a trackpad (if working on a laptop) is inefficient, you can navigate the Start menu exclusively with your keyboard. Press the Windows key to open the menu and navigate up and down the column with the arrow keys. You may also begin a search by just typing, once you have opened the Start menu.
For users seeking a more advanced experience, there’s an additional menu, the Power Users menu, that offers utilities like your device’s Event Viewer, Device Manager, and Command Prompt module.
Greater Accessibility of Your Apps
You can also press the Windows Key in combination with a number key to open the associated apps that appear on your taskbar. If the app is already open, it’s a quick way to minimize and maximize a window. Adding the Control key to the combination will open a new window for an app. For example, if you want a separate Chrome window, and Chrome is the fifth app on your taskbar, you would press Ctrl+Windows+5. Alternatively, to open a new app from your taskbar, you can use Windows+T to highlight your first toolbar app by selecting which app to launch with the arrow keys and Enter.
Utilizing a Virtual Desktop
If you are one to heavily use virtual desktops in your day-to-day, you can quickly create one by pressing Windows key+Shift+D. Once you are finished, Windows key+Ctrl+F4 will close the virtual desktop back down.
With these shortcuts now in your arsenal, you have the tools to help you stay productive–with or without a mouse. For more tips, tricks, and handy information, keep coming back to Excalibur Technology’s blog!
Compared to traditional telephone solutions, software-based phone systems have become a major opportunity for businesses to cut costs and improve efficiency. Even if traditional phone systems have their uses, VoIP still wins out by eliminating unnecessary costs and simplifying your business’s physical infrastructure. You might find that VoIP has a place in your office, too.
VoIP takes advantage of your business’s Internet connection to transfer your voice to the desired recipient, usually through a software client that’s installed on a workstation, laptop, or smartphone. The main draw for VoIP is that it works anywhere as long as you have an Internet connection. Organizations have widely accepted VoIP as a viable alternative to the traditional telephony system for a number of reasons. We’ll go over the three most beneficial reasons to use VoIP as your trusted communications solution.
VoIP is Versatile
One of the big pain points that businesses have with their office phone system is that they can’t easily take it on the road with them when they leave the office. VoIP makes this easy by installing a softphone application on any applicable device, like a smartphone or a laptop. Just hook up a headset or microphone and you’re all set–it’ll be just like using your office phone.
VoIP is Flexible
Onboarding new employees is another major problem for growing businesses. A larger workforce means adding new telephones and new cables to your communications infrastructure. In a worst-case scenario, you may need to remodel your office to accommodate for the changes in the size of your workforce or communications infrastructure. VoIP eliminates this need. All you have to do is add a new user, including their extension, and configure the phone system. Although, depending on the size of your workforce, you may need to keep a close eye on your bandwidth, as it relies on your Internet connection to work properly.
VoIP is Cost-Effective
If you compare the costs of VoIP to those of a traditional phone system, you’ll be in for a pleasant surprise. A great way to describe the cost savings is by comparing VoIP to that of cable cutters who no longer want cable television. Those who pay for cable television get access to countless channels that they can’t possibly watch all of. Thanks to monthly services like Netflix and Hulu Plus, viewers pay a fraction of the price they would normally pay for entertainment, leading them to cancel their television plans in favor of more affordable monthly payments. Similarly, telephone providers often bundle together services that your business may not want or need, and you certainly don’t want to pay for things you won’t use. Since VoIP only uses your Internet connection, it uses a service you already pay for, making it convenient and budget-friendly. You can add all of those additional features later on if you want them.
If your business is considering a new approach to communications, try VoIP from Excalibur Technology. We’ll work with you to find a solution that’s just right for your business. To learn more, reach out to us at (877) NET – KING.