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  • Larry Alton 9:00 am on July 31, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , office 2.0, ,   

    Cliques in the Workplace 

    Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

    Cliques in the WorkplaceUnfortunately, you didn’t leave behind the cool kid’s lunch table when you left high school. In the adult workplace, there are still cliques, there are still mean girls, and gossip can be just as devastating. It might come with new buzzwords, like “water cooler conversation,” but the reality is that humans (regardless of age) are social creatures and naturally want to form groups. However, we’re also competitive and that can come out fiercer than ever in the real world.

    As a manager, it’s your job to make sure each of your employees can enjoy a positive environment that allows them to flourish, do their job, and enjoy coming to work.

    Like it or not, part of your job is playing social director as well as interior designer. Part of your role is making sure every worker feels welcomed and valued, both from yourself and from everyone else in the office. It’s a tough job being Mama or Papa Bear, but you’re in this position because you have what it takes.

    Playing social director

    There are many ways to encourage holistic socializing both at work and beyond the office hours. For some offices, this means a standing Friday night happy hour at the bar across the street, but you’ve probably noticed that the same people keep showing up (or not showing up), so you’re really just providing an extra avenue for certain cliques to get together. That can be a good thing, but you’re not making serious strides in encouraging the outsiders to join.

    Instead, consider a social function that’s not geared towards the most social butterflies and which doesn’t encourage drinking alcohol. Maybe a lunchtime park cleanup crew, philanthropy group or “club” that welcomes all and tries out a new activity each week or month. You can welcome suggestions by asking everyone to anonymously make recommendations based on something they like, then draw from a hat. Not only will this provide an eclectic range of options, but everyone will also be exposed to a brand new hobby or passion.

    Designing spaces

    The popularity of the open office plan was created to encourage random conversations, creative thinking and a more social area to get work done. However, for some workers a non-stop open space can be distracting and even induce anxiety. Plus, there are some jobs (such as engineers and writers) that really require more private and quiet time for optimal concentration. Instead of a totally open office plan, aim for an open social area.

    (More …)

     
  • Carlos del Pozo 10:57 am on November 10, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , office 2.0, ,   

    How do I upload files to Zyncro? Document Management on the Cloud 2.0 

    Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

    As an Enterprise Social Network, Zyncro contains a file management system, enabling you to save any documents you need in your work groups and:

    1. share corporate information
    2. manage internal knowledge better
    3. access corporate documents from anywhere and from any device

    So the goal of this post is to answer the common question: How do I actually upload documents to Zyncro?

    Over the course of this post, we will show you 4 different ways of upload your files on Zyncro according to two factors:

    • The source and file type
    • The method used to upload

    Choose whichever way suits you best!

    Uploading files to Zyncro individually

    For this first option, we suggest you create an Internal Training group in your Zyncro and upload a document on using Enterprise Social Networks there. Haven’t got one? Well, here’s your chance to download our Best Practices in Enterprise Social Networking from http://www.zyncro.com/en/manual! :-)

    Once the PDF file has been saved on your computer…

    1. Go to http://my.zyncro.com and enter your username and password.
    2. Go to the Files and Groups section > Internal Training (REMEMBER: If you still haven’t created this group, click Create new group and invite as many contacts in your organization as you want).
    3. In the Internal Training group, go to the Files tab and click Add files.
    4. The Upload files window will allow you to select the file from your computer’s hard drive (Choose file button). Go to the folder where you have saved the document and click Open.
    5. The file will be uploaded and will appear in the list of files for the group.

    Uploading files using the advanced mode

    If you want to upload a group of files instead of just one and/or select them from different locations, you can do this using the “Advanced mode: upload several files” by marking the checkbox that appears in the Upload files window.

    1. Go to http://my.zyncro.com and enter your username and password.
    2. Go to the Files and Groups section > Internal Training (REMEMBER: If you still haven’t created it, click Create new group and invite as many contacts in your organization as you want).
    3. In the Internal Training group, go to the Files tab and click Add files.
    4. Here, instead of clicking Choose file, mark the Advanced mode: upload several files checkbox at the bottom of the window. IMPORTANT: The first time you activate this option, it will ask you to activate several components (Java applets). You need to accept the activation of these elements in your browser in order to upload files in this way.
    5. The window will change automatically and bring you to another window where you can see 3 sections: (1) on the left, you’ll see the structure of folders on your computer, (2) at the top, you’ll see the contents of the folder selected on the left, and (3), at the bottom, this is where you should drag the folders (from the top section) you want to upload to Zyncro to.
    6. Once you have dragged and dropped all the files in the bottom section, click on the circle icon with the green arrow and uploading will start immediately. In the same window, you can follow the files upload progress (both as a % uploaded and the remaining time). When it’s finished, you’ll see a list of the files that have been uploaded to Zyncro.

    Uploading folders using the zyncronizer

    Finally, you can also upload files to Zyncro using the zyncronizer, the tool that can be used to create groups or upload files and folders Zyncro directly from your computer and vice-versa, allowing you to download whatever you have in your Zyncro, creating folders and copies of the files on your computer.

    We recommend you use this option for all those files and folders that you work frequently on.

    1. You need to download the Zyncronizer from http://www.zyncro.com/en/download first.
    2. Open the Zyncronizer on your computer, enter your username and password for accessing Zyncro.
    3. Go to the folder on your computer that you want to upload to Zyncro, right-click on the folder and select the “Create group in Zyncro” option.
    4. This way, a new group will be created with the contents of the folder that you have “zyncronized”.

    For more information on how the zyncronizer works, check out older posts on our blog.

    Uploading files via email

    Finally, remember that, in the same way you can answer messages posted on your wall or your groups just by replying to the email notifying you of new posts in your Zyncro or post new messages in your group by sending a new email to the email address that appears to the right, you can attach a file to upload the group directly. It’s as simple as that!

     

     
  • Joan Alvares 11:53 am on July 5, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: beach, , office 2.0, ,   

    Move your office to the beach 

    Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

    I am writing this article whilst the weather temperature is 34 degrees centigrade. Meteorologists have forecast weeks of intense heat.  They have given warning of heat from Africa.

    I remember back in 2003 when I was studying Journalism at the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Doctor Mavi Dolz (may she rest in peace) would teach the class under the shade of a pine tree.  It was so hot inside the classroom that she very rightly guessed that our attention span and as a result the productivity of her efforts, would not be optimum.  From then on she decided we would work in the open air, it should be a right for any office employee at least once a year.

    Is it possible to work at the beach? Quite possibly you never asked yourself this before.  We never did at Poko either, until the air conditioning packed up in mid July.  It was now 2009 and at the time, an office in the cloud still sounded like a kind of utopia and we were still confined to working within four walls.  So we picked up the essential bits and pieces and brought it all down to La Barceloneta where we set up in the sand for a day.  We worked until our laptop batteries said “enough!”.  No more than 3 hours.  Later we had a swim, chatted and made sandcastles in the sand until lunchtime.

    If a part of the productivity of a company can be measured by its people’s happiness, I would have to day that that day at the beach was a highly productive day.

    Bhutan is known for being the only country in the world that measures its richness in terms of Gross Internal Happiness, which should lead us to reflection as to whether in one works in the West to become richer, or to be happier.  What I am certain of is that a happier employee is a more productive employee.  I recently heard a successful entrepreneur from Silicon Valley say that the idea of “business” is evolving to move away from what it etymologically means; ‘denial of leisure’.   And he justified this by saying that one could not aspire to becoming the best at something they do not find entertaining.  Quite simply the person would be incapable of dedicating the necessary time in order to excel.

    But when I speak about fun at work I do not mean putting fuzzball machines in the common room.  I am talking about enjoying doing what you do in order to earn your keep. Like Messi, the best professional in the world in his field, who gets annoyed with his manager every time he is obliged to take a rest.  And in order for one to enjoy working, the environment is a critical factor.

     

     
  • ZyncroBlog 9:25 am on June 27, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: office 2.0   

    Zyncro and Home Office Day 

    Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

    The first edition of “Home office day” took place on 22nd June.

    The slogan being…

    For you, for me and for all of your colleagues.

    Because you can move your office home gaining comfort.  Because work gets done inside as well as outside the office.  Because your company will reap more benefits.  Because the environment clearly needs it.

    …this initiative promotes home-working in order to increase personal benefits (work-life balance, convenience), business benefits (increasing productivity economical benefits) as well as environmental benefits.

     

    Supported by Microsoft Iberica and in collaboration with the Department of Industry, Tourism and Commerce, the Catalonia Government, the International Association of Microsoft Certified Partners in Spain (IAMCP), the Association for Autonomous Workers (ATA), the Masfamilia Foundation, the ONCE Foundation, the Foundation for DiversityIntelTelefonicaVodafoneWorkplace Innovation Group and the Microsoft Innovation Centers network in Spain, this initiative is supported by over 165,000 people.

    At Zyncro we support all new initiatives that promote a work-life balance and effective time management ensuring that this is not detrimental towards productivity, and of course tools such as Zyncro allow for that “office in the cloud” and generate many more working from home success cases.

    Let’s Zyncronize all of our offices and work from wherever necessary! :)

     

     
  • Joan Alvares 8:30 am on June 7, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , office 2.0,   

    Summertime and tablets 

    Tiempo estimado de lectura: 2,5 minutos

    00:57. I write this post from my sofa at home. I’ve been trying to watch the TV for 20 minutes.  I say trying because there is nothing on that has captivated my attention long enough to end my channel hopping.  I ponder a thought for a moment, that one of the most detrimental effects of DTT is that it has made zapping through the channels and endless task having to go through an infinity of channels, each one more dispensable than its predecessor.  After dithering over a few talk-shows and documentaries, I finally stick with one of the four channels that replay the Champion’s finals.  I’m still not sleepy enough so with the sound of Wembley in the background, I switch on the computer to write the post you are now reading.  And about ten minutes go by when I start to feel very uncomfortable indeed.  I can’t find an adecuate position: sitting down, my knees start sweating with the heat coming from the battery and if I lie down, I run the risk of falling asleep on the sofa and waking up at the crack of dawn with crease marks on my arms.  I put the computer off and go to fetch the tablet.

    I try to find a theme to all of this for the post and begin to formulate a theory on which Steve Jobs invented the iPad on the sofa in his home. According to this risky and possibly absurd theory, the founder of Apple was trying to imagine how to make the MacBook thinner or the iPod smaller, when he began to realize that he was somewhat uncomfortable sitting on the sofa.  And all he did from then on was in answer to this problem he was having which in fact, is the same problem that many others experience.  Henry Ford said that if he had taken any notice of what people said, “I would have created a faster horse instead of the car”.  But he was quite sure that he was not in the business of selling horses, but velocity, the same way Jobs is clear on the fact that Apple does not sell technology but in fact functionality.

    My main job at Poko is to think and to come up with (ideas, strategies…), to share (articles, references…) and to supervise (price quotes, designs…).  Therefore: to think more than to take action.  To say more than to do.  To see more than to produce.  Tasks that increase all of the time and thanks to the growth of the cloud, I can do this from any place, anywhere and at anytime. Even from the sofa during those moments before bed.  But as the summer approaches and the temperature rises, the computer becomes an uncomfortable companion for those sofa-moments because of its size and the heat it generates.  The tablet on the other hand, is the ideal gadget.  It is what most resembles an actual notepad.  A notepad without pages with a window to Internet but still only a notepad at the end of the day.  It allows me to work whilst lying down completely and so, is more comfortable and inspiring.  Anything for company productivity.

     

     
  • Joan Alvares 2:00 pm on May 6, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , office 2.0,   

    Snail pack: 7 tools that allow you to take your office with you 

    Estimated reading time: 3 minutes.

    Image with "Attribution - No Derivatives" (by-nd) CC License (Vodafone Spain)

    5:49pm.  I start writing this post in Barcelona but may finish it in Madrid.  That is the best thing about travelling on the AVE: you can make use of time.

    Travelling by plane on the other hand, one uses up two of those three hours in a series of queues (to check-in, to go through passport control, to embark, to place your coat in the overhead lockers, to leave the plane, to collect your suitcase…).  The hour on board is not much more productive: the seat is uncomfortable and it is impossible to get a connection so the best option you have is to sleep.  Or try.

    As I was saying, I am writing this article from my first train office, an office that is now going at a speed of 175 miles an hour and has views over the Llobregat.

    I am on my way to Segovia where the organizers of Publicatessen – a university festival for publicity – have invited me to give a talk.

    Thinking about it, this is my second post at Zyncro and I think it would be useful to clarify the question some of you asked after reading the first one: which are the basic tools for working in the cloud? In order to answer this question, I have put together the snail pack with a list of 7 basic tools that any cloud worker should bear in mind for working in the cloud and to which of course, you may add your suggestions.  Here goes:

    • Lightweight rucksack: I use a Samsonite with handles.  Elegant and waterproof but overall light.  A good choice that my back, previously abused by heavy bags thanks me for every day.
    • Portable laptop: My most recent purchase is an 11 inch Macbook Air.   In my opinion the first computer, netbooks aside, that honours the term “portable laptop”.
    • Combined SIM: A solution that many operators offer so that you can take your personal mobile and your company one within the same handset.   I use the Vodadone MultiSIM, which means I can have my landline on “Mobile office” mode which allows me to take my fixed line anywhere.
    • Tablet: Essential for those journeys or situations where taking a laptop out is not so comfortable.  I use a Samsung Galaxy Tab, which in addition to the eBook and the eCalendar, it also doubles as a modem for the laptop. The 9.7 inches of the iPad seem a little excessive although to be fair, Android is closely following in Apple’s footsteps.
    • Synchronised calendar:  After trying thousands of online calendars and GTD (Got To Do) structure task organisers, I have not found anything more complete and personalise-able than Informant.  Agendas, tasks, calendar, all in one and synchronised.
    • Virtual memory: I am becoming more loyal to Evernote all of the time, an ideal ‘app’ for capturing all of those ideas and thoughts that you later want to recall in an organised fashion when you need them, at that precise moment.  Like an external memory for our brain, uploaded into the cloud.
    • Extension lead: In many of the places you can work comfortably (eg: Starbucks), there is a problem: sockets are scarce.  And sometimes they are being used by another cloud worker. An easy, cheap and simple way of resolving this energy overbooking is the extension lead that will allow us to share the power source with everybody else.

    NOTE:  This post is not sponsored by any brand.  Although if you are a marketing director of any of the products or services above mentioned and wish to send me a Christmas hamper, you may contact me at joan@poko.ad

     

     
  • Joan Alvares 10:15 am on April 5, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , office 2.0,   

    If you want to grow… close your offices! 

    Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

    It was twelve past when my mobile started to ring:

    -Hello, I’m outside but I don’t know what the flat number is…
    -Hi Mike, you can get in from the ground floor.

    In less than 30 seconds he walked through the door:

    -So your office is… Starbucks?
    -That’s right. Youll have seen we have a few more around Barcelona.
    -(Laughs) “But… what happened? Wasn’t it going too well?
    -On the contrary, we just opened up in two new countries
    -What?  Now I’m baffled!
    -I’ll tell you about it now – do you want a coffee?

    Let me introduce myself.  My name is John: frustrated footballer, converted journalist, photography enthusiast.  And one of the two to blame for Poko, that bizarre publicity agency that from one day to the next, became officeless.  What do we do?  We create memorable campaigns via interactive experiences. Or as we prefer to call it, build the dialogue between brands and people.

    Three months ago we decided to leave a beautiful loft office in Gracia, at the heart of Barcelona, in order to move our office to the Internet.  We did this because more and better work gets done in the cloud.  In an increasingly more mobile market, offices will also become more mobile, what Josep Maria Ganyet defined as a “wireless, paperless and spaceless office“.  From this section, I will try to transmit the experiences of a company that in order to grow, decided to close its offices.

    Friday 7pm.  The smell of freshly ground coffee at Starbucks, Passeig de Gracia, at the heart of Barcelona.  After a very productive meeting at the offices of a well known brand of jeans, I get ready to prepare for the weekend.  Summarising up the past week quickly, I can say that these five days have been very intense: twentysomething meetings – almost six a day and the launch of two new projects.  A week in which I have met over thirty people and worked in seven different places including three coffee shops, two hotels, one serviced office, my own home and an incredible terrace with a view of La Pedrera.

    “I couldn’t”, said Paul, a consultant from London who is here in Barcelona for an exhibition, “I’m incapable of concentrating outside of the office”.  I explain to him, that what I do when I am not able to concentrate, is to move to a radically different place; and it always works.  My audience listens carefully by means of ‘uh-huhs’ that denotes that something in between scepticism and politeness that prevents us from being opposed to someone we do not know.  So I continue with my argument: I explain that after discovering the advantages of the cloud, I now find it difficult to work within the same four walls of a certain place.  That way I was less creative, less proactive, a lot less efficient and resolved little.  And it is purely a question of productivity.  In the end, Paul lightly objects assuring that a routine has its positive side because at the end of the day “man is a creature of habit…” but at the slight thought that his comment could be controversial, he smoothes it over with a British elegance, “…it is also true that man can become accustomed to not have customs”.  Before I knew it, we had spent 40 minutes chatting and I had to go.  We conclude that working outside the office is not so much a question of concentration or habits, if not a question of means: with the necessary means, one can work anywhere.

    Before saying goodbye we exchanged cards.  Paul showed me the central location of his office on his iphone, in the hub of the financial district.  He tells me that whatever Poko may need in London, his office is our office.  I begin the weekend with a smile: without even wanting an office, it turns out we now had one in the City.

     
  • Patricia Fernandez Carrelo 9:15 am on April 4, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , office 2.0   

    What it means to be a company 2.0 

    Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

     

     

     

    April has begun and thus a new phase for ZyncroBlog.  So here I am, Zyncro‘s new managing editor and delighted to be able to share with you :-)

    Nowadays, everything is 2.0: the website, the culture, the content, the people… It is because of this that the environment in which we spent most of our day to day could not avoid becoming the ‘in’ thing. Companies on the whole are also experiencing a turnaround towards “twopoint-oism” .

    But is it about being in or is it a necessity?  The name 2.0 implies a type of behaviour,values, a vision including a mission, these concepts also characterize the entire business entity.  It is due to this that perhaps from its base and from a “folksonomic” perspective, a new and necessary (r)evolution begins towards a more dynamic business style, more social, offshoring and delocalisation, with a shared focus across all its springs, with business management centralised within its people… And all this is what being a 2.0 company means.

    At Zyncro we analise and live (day by day in person I can assure you) the reality of a 2.0 company: the social change, business and personal and we are trying to provide this new scene with an application that supports: a 2.0 intranet.

    It is due to this that our ZyncroBlog intends to be a summarised combination of ideas that all 1.0 or 2.0 companies can integrate into their environment.

    In the menu on the right hand side you can see the different sections that make up this blog.  But as I said at the beginning, from today onwards there will be much more.

    The format we manage at Zyncro and in its ZyncroBlog is as follows:

    Ideas

    1. Market trends
    2. Enterprise 2.0
    3. Zyncro Ideas
    4. Zyncro Stories
    5. The move from being an off world to an on world

    Values and strategy

    1. 2.0 Management (a new section starting in April!)
    2. PsicoCoaching
    3. 2.0 Communication
    4. Productivity
    5. Collaboration
    6. 2.0 HR (a new section starting in April!)
    7. 2.0 Marketing (a new section starting in April!)

    Resources

    1. 2.0 Content
    2. Design and web usability (a new section starting in April!)
    3. Books and links (these will be found in our posts :-) )

    Tools

    1. Zyncro
    2. Cloud office (a new section starting in April!)
    3. 2.0 Management applications (a new section starting in April!)

    All this with experts in each field that caringly collaborate with us sharing with us their 2.0 vision, our Zyncronized authors.  Don’t you feel like Zyncronizing yourself?

     
  • Maria Ripoll Cera 10:30 am on February 24, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: office 2.0, , women entrepreneurs   

    Office 2.0: methodology is the key 

    Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

    The school of female entrepreneurs ODAME organised an event of reflection within the EMMA programme in Barcelona Activa from the 14th – 17th February.  The objective of this programme is to promote the new policies for supporting female entrepreneurship in Mediterranean countries.

    For the “Office 2.0: methodology is the key” round table, 4 professionals were invited to share our experiences of management within our company or our projects using collaboration and digital tools.  Mònica Ramoneda, expert in work online, posed a question:  has the new tools explosion changed work methods so that we find ourselves facing a new paradigm shift?  Her opinion is that we face a true organisational leap based on teamwork, organisational and mass collaboration.  Monica presented the most common and simple or efficient tools (in Catalan) to work with ideas, information, documents or contacts, teamwork, organisation and interacting and having a presence on the Internet.

    Pablo Muiño, city digital dynamic, emphasised that it is not a leap but a technological disruption which has taken place over recent years and is provoking a silent restructure in sectors such as tourism, journalism, education, content, telework, etc.  For Pablo, the revolutionary combination is that of technological tools + organisational change + permanent learning.

    Sílvia Cobo demonstrated that many things can be done with very Little budget thanks to collaboration such as the professional meetingpoint for journalists BCNMediaLab.

    On my side, I presented the experience of finding ourselves being self employed again after closing our own company only to find that after a year, I set up a new flexible company: network of professionals, thanks to the use of collaborative tools. Amongst the brief review of my working day to day essentials, the professional meets Zyncro, my virtual server for saving and accessing my day to day files from any computer.

     
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