How Dan Pink Invested in iDoneThis

This story is inspired by this week’s Startup Edition question:  How did you raise money for your startup?

Email Dan Pink.

That task sat on my to-do list, undone for weeks. I somehow managed to move everything else around it to my done list while that one task languished. I was too scared to reach out.

If you don’t know who Dan Pink is, he’s a five-time bestselling author and thought leader on the changing world of work. His latest, To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others, which gives a definitive look at modern sales, is a #1 New York Times business bestseller.

I had to sell to the guy who had literally written the book on selling.

I finally worked up the courage to send Dan an email, and we set up a call. Then, I gave him a horrible pitch — I fumbled my words and my nerves paved the way to tangents that made no sense. When we were done, I hung up, dejected and I felt sure that I’d blown it.

Continue Reading

The Most Innovative Google Employees Aren’t Stanford/MIT grads with Perfect SATs

Google has long had a reputation for being a place that’s near impossible to get a job if you aren’t a Stanford or MIT grad. They not only asked you for your college GPA, they even asked you what you made on your SAT as a pimple-faced high schooler.

Recently, that’s all changed.

google employee hiring puzzle

Continue Reading

What Goldilocks Can Teach You About Management

Running a classroom and running a business have interesting parallels for what works best to cultivate intrinsic motivation, effective productivity, and successful performance. Whether we’re students or employees, we need supportive conditions to achieve know-how and expertise.

On the education front, Dr. MaryEllen Vogt has examined the effect of how teachers’ perception of their students’ aptitude influenced their classroom approach. She found that when students were perceived as high performers, teachers:

  • talked less and encouraged more interactions among students,
  • allowed for more creative and generative approaches to learning,
  • offered opportunities for independent work,
  • had warmer and more personal relationships with students, and
  • spent little time on behavior or classroom management issues.

When teachers saw their students as low performers, they:

  • prepared more structured lessons,
  • allowed fewer opportunities for student creativity,
  • covered less content,
  • rewarded students for “trying hard” rather than for “good thinking,”
  • spent a significant amount of time on behavior and management issues, and
  • had less congenial relationships with students due to their heavy emphasis on discipline.Source: Karen Tankersley, Literacy Strategies for Grades 4-12

Continue Reading

How the Power-Happiness Connection Matters at Work

People who feel powerful are happier, according to a recent study published in Psychological Science.

Researchers found that authenticity is what connects that relationship between power and “subjective well-being” (happiness, basically). When you have power, your behavior can align more closely with your desires and values so that you are free to be more authentic. And when you can go about your day being more true to yourself, you feel happier.

“[B]y leading people to be true to their desires and inclinations — to be authentic — power leads individuals to experience greater happiness,” the study authors note. What’s especially interesting is that dispositional power, or your sense of power, is a strong predictor of happiness, so your perception matters.

image

Continue Reading

Share More Feedback and Recognition with Individual Likes & Comments Per Done

Many of you told us that you wanted to be able to give specific feedback on people’s dones, and we couldn’t have agreed more. So we’ve revamped the feedback system so that you can now add comments and likes to individual dones — on the web and through your email digests!

Likes and comments per done at iDoneThis

These changes may seem simple, but for us, these small improvements are significant. We had a hunch that improving the feedback system to make it more responsive and interactive would be key to increasing the engagement and fulfillment of our members with their work. Since launching the feedback per done feature on February 6, we noticed some interesting trends that indicate we’re on the right track. We thought we’d share some of those preliminary observations, based on three measurements:  number of likes over time, number of users giving likes, and number of comments over time.

Continue Reading

If Money Were No Object: The Best of the Internet

Happy Friday! Catch up with the best of what we’ve shared on the interwebs this week! 

Chart your own path but slow down along the way.

What would you like to do if money were no object? What do you desire?

Turns out there’s something between extroverts and introverts. Dan Pink on the benefits of being an ambivert.

Communicating through the inverted pyramid.

5 things to be more effective at work.

Amazing Productivity Apps: The Best of the Internet

Here’s a sweet short film, Honk if You Love Someone, that will make you smile. (via Dan Pink, whose book, To Sell is Human, just cameout.) And now, catch up with the best of what we’ve shared on the interwebs this week!

We’re among some pretty cool company in this amex open forum roundup of 10 amazing productivity apps.

Did you make any resolutions this year? Here’s why 88% of them fail and how to make them work.

Put just one word into action to refocus your company and motivate your employees.

Don’t wait! Delegate!

If you liked the film and want to make your own signs, try out some guerilla art using post-it notes! Bonus: not having to stand outside!

Collaboration is Noisy

When did work become so noisy?

I don’t just mean the ambient noise, that clickity-clackity typing, strangely noticeable chewing, annoying finger tapping, and chit-chatting hubbub of an open floor plan office. I’m also talking about the information and social inundation invading our work life, the buzzes and pings, the tweets and likes, the emails and comments, the meetings and chats.

image

Our notion of productivity has become imbalanced toward focusing on the inbox of our thought process — input, information, inspiration. I can feel productive after scanning tweets, reading articles, even having an inspiring conversation, but if I don’t take time to think and process, if I don’t actually turn the input into something, that feeling is illusory.

Ultimately, productivity requires producing, creativity creating. It sounds so simple and obvious, but it has been easy to forget these days that we need solitude, quiet and time.

Continue Reading

The Servant Leader and the Social Enterprise

Dan Pink, #1 New York Times bestselling author on the changing world of work, told us that the most radical change happening in enterprise organization is that “[t]oday, talented people need organizations less than organizations need talented people.” The effect of that is to upend the traditional corporate hierarchy and put individual employees at the top.  As Robert Greenleaf wrote in 1970 in his influential essay, The Servant as Leader, the winners will be those companies whose “first order of business is to build a group of people who, under the influence of the institution, grow taller and become healthier, stronger, more autonomous” — in other words, those that put people first.

Greenleaf argues that the only person to lead a people-first organization is a servant, because a servant’s natural inclination is service to others — not coercion — for the purpose of others’ growth, health, wisdom, freedom, autonomy, and benefit, and for that reason, in the future, “the only truly viable institutions will be those that are predominantly servant-led.”  That makes the value proposition of the social enterprise stark and dead simple, and, no surprise here, it isn’t covered by buzzwords like “collaboration” or “social”: adapt to the social enterprise or face complete obsolescence.

Continue Reading

“iDoneThis keeps me honest.” – Our Interview of Daniel Pink

Daniel Pink

Here at iDoneThis, we are huge fans of Daniel Pink, author of #1 New York Times bestseller, Drive. We admire his thought leadership on the changing world of work and are so excited that he records his daily accomplishments with iDoneThis. Below, we interviewed Dan on the important stuff – why he does what he does and how he gets stuff done.

Continue Reading