Strategies for Improving Workplace Behavior and Performance

From Leadership Expert Dr. Diane Hamilton

Introverts and Extroverts: Which Type Prefers Social Networking?

I recently had a discussion in one of the courses I teach about whether introverts or extroverts were more likely to be on the social web.  Some students made a good argument for why there may be more introverts on social networking sites.  Introverts tend to like to take their time to think about what they want to say before they say it.  Therefore, the online environment is a good place for them to be able to type what they want to say at their own speed.  Other students made a good argument for why there may be more extroverts on social sites.  Extroverts like a lot of discussion and interaction with others and therefore it makes sense that they’d be out there conversing, even if it was in written form.

I did a little research and found an interesting study by Maggie Morrison and Sally McMillan from the University of Tennessee. A total of 351 persons participated in this study examining the behavior and characteristics of consumers in user generated content.  Their findings indicated that most respondents read or lurk more often than they post.  They also found that men were likely to score high on the posting factor and women were more likely to score high on use of social networking sites.

As far as the whether there were more introverts or extroverts, the authors found that participants who are more likely to lurk and post at social networking sites are also more likely to score high on the extraversion scale.

Check out a blog by abisignorelli.com where the author speculated that there were more introverts by clicking here.  The author put together a quick one question survey to gather some data.  Click here for that survey. At the time of this writing, the results from that survey indicated 57% were introverts and 43% were extroverts.

Blog.thick.com tended to agree that more introverts were on the web. In that article, the author states that the internet has helped the introvert come out of their shell.  To see the article, click here.

Twitterwatchdog.com also agrees that there are more introverts socializing on the Internet, stating that Twitter is a safe haven for shy people and introverts.  Check out their blog by clicking here.

Mashable.com noted in one of their articles that Guy Kawasaki, the 15th most influential Twitter user and one of the most recognizable names in social media, is a self-professed introvert.  Click here to go to the Mashable site to answer their survey to answer whether you are an introvert or an extrovert.

So what do you think?  Are there more introverts or extroverts out there social networking?  The University of Tennessee study showed more extroverts and the informal surveys showed more introverts.   In our book, The Young Adult’s Guide to Understanding Personalities, Toni Rothpletz and I write about the differences between introverts and extroverts.  We are both extroverts and find the differences between the two groups fascinating.  If you are interested in learning more about Myers-Briggs’ and their definition of the difference between introverts and extroverts, click here.

In our book we list several examples of each type of Myers-Briggs personality type.

Here is a list of some famous extroverts that we write about in our book:

  • Tom Hanks
  • David Spade
  • Oprah
  • President Obama
  • Johnny Depp
  • Michael Jordan
  • Matthew McConaughey
  • Ben Affleck
  • Robin Williams
  • Robert Downing Jr.
  • Sandra Bullock

Here is a list of some famous introverts:

  • Tiger Woods
  • Albert Einstein
  • Sir Isaac Newton
  • Meryl Streep
  • Julia Roberts
  • John F. Kennedy, Jr.
  • William Shakespeare
  • Michael Jackson
  • Marilyn Monroe

If you are interested in seeing more . . .you can check out the lists of celebrity examples in our book which will be published soon.  I will keep you updated.

Online Schools Using Skype, Tinychat, Video Conferencing, Wiki and Other Technologies

Recently one of the universities where I work sent me an email stating that they require that I have a Skype account.  I was curious to see if other schools were using Skype and did a little research.  I found an article which I found interesting from informationtechnologyschools.com.  In the article, they mention 10 ways to use Skype in the online classroom:

  1. Videoconferencing
  2. Tutoring
  3. Live Lectures
  4. Guest Lectures
  5. Global Projects
  6. Student Presentations
  7. Classroom Discussions
  8. Announcements
  9. Oral Examinations
  10. Virtual Field Trips

For the complete article, click here.

I can see that Skype would be extremely useful in synchronous classrooms.  Click here for another article about online learning using Skype from collegefinder.org.  I like that they are finding new and unusual technology uses for the classroom. Click here for an excellent article on 100 inspiring ways to use social media in the classroom from onlineuniversities.com.

I’ve seen that some schools are using TinychatPBworks.com claims, “Tinychat delivers dead simple video conferences without the extraneous ad-ons and inconvenience, making video conferencing an accessible, uncomplicated experience. It works on Windows, Mac and Linux; with Firefox, IE, Safari, and Chrome; and there is a version available for iPhones. You can have up to twelve people in a room with HQ video, protected by passwords and moderators, share your desktop with them, and your conferences can be recorded and embedded on your website.”  – Check out this tutorial on how to use Tinychat by clicking here.

When it comes to video conferencing, though, one of the advantages I see for online learning is that it can be completed in asynchronous format.  In other words, users can log on at any time of the day and not at a specific time.  As an instructor, I find this to be extremely helpful to me.  I do my best thinking at around 5:00 am and I doubt my students would want to log on for a lecture at that time.

Asynchronous video is still an excellent option for online courses. It may not have the interactive abilities that programs like Skype have, but it may also avoid some of the confusion and problems that come with understanding the technology as well.  There is also the blended learning option that some schools embrace.  Some schools have parts of the classes offered synchronously and parts asynchronously. 

There are tools for both types of learning.  There are advantages and disadvantages with both.  Chronical.com stated the following about synchronous online tools, “If using the “same time, different place” model of communication, some common barriers to implementation of synchronous tools are cost and bandwidth—not only cost and bandwidth on your end, as the individual teacher or the institution, but also to the students. This is especially true with conferencing systems; video/web conferencing requires equipment to deliver but also to receive. Although the benefits of real-time video conferencing are clear—it’s as near to a physical classroom environment as you can get—the software, hardware, and bandwidth necessary on both sides can be more cost-prohibitive than actually physically attending a class.”

That same article addressed asynchronous online tools, giving the following examples of technology that can be used in this asynchronous online setting:

  • Discussion boards: whether integrated into your online learning environment or not (such as Google Groups), well-managed discussion boards can produce incredibly rich conversations about topics at hand.
  • Blogs: my personal favorite, as not only are the students discussing with one another (and the instructor), but they’re learning something about writing for a wider audience whomay or may not be listening in.  The open nature of blogs also allows for communication between students in other classes at other institutions who are studying the same topics.  You might have to make “comments on blogs” count for a grade in order for some students to do it, but such is the nature of  the beast—those students probably wouldn’t talk in class, either.
  • Social Networking Site:  Facebook and Twitter can play important roles in your asynchronous communications strategy.  Facebook pages for a class can be the destination for up-to-date information about the course, without your students having to friend you (or even one another).  Twitter, and Twitter lists, can be useful sites of asynchronous discussion, although not in the threaded format that one is used to seeing in a discussion board setting.
  • E-mail/Listservs:  Some people consider mailing lists to be quaint relics of a previous technological age, but it’s hard to argue with the fact that they still work: an e-mail based discussion list does afford one the ability to carry on threaded discussions in a private environment, yet outside the confines of a managed system (for discussion boards).  In fact Google Groups (referenced above) is a threaded discussion board that can also take place via e-mail, putting a different twist on the typical concept of the listserv.

I personally often use my blog in my online classrooms.  I teach many courses where students are researching specific topics such as entrepreneurship, leadership, marketing, etc.  By adding links to my blog where I have written about many of these topics, it helps add content to the discussions.  I have not had students create their own blog as the above author mentions, although I like the idea, but I have taught classes using a wiki.

For those of you not familiar with what a wiki is, think of Wikipedia.  That is the ultimate wiki where information can be added to a site by multiple sources.  When classes are taught on a wiki, it is a bit more complicated as students need to write some code-like information.  It worked out well in the school where I taught it, because it was a technology-based school where students had more technology training.  One advantage of a wiki is for group-based projects.  In the course I taught, students were able to work together on one big project where they could all enter information onto the wiki.  The problem with any group project, wiki-based or not, is that you still have those students who do not participate as much as others.   

As with any technology, there will always be some obstacles to overcome.  However, I embrace technology and look forward to the next new product that helps increase student involvement and retention. For more information about online learning, check out my book:  The Online Student User’s Manual.

What is Visible Measures? Measuring the Popularity of Videos on the Web

I teach several different marketing and advertising college courses.  It can be a challenge to keep up with all of the different social media advertising trends.  Companies want to be able to know that their message is being seen.  One way to find out if your message is being picked up is through a company called Visible Measures.  Visible Measures is the independent third-party measurement firm for Internet video publishers, advertisers, and viral marketers. According to Forbes , “Visible Measures is a New York firm that counts the popularity of videos on the growing list of sites hosting them, of which YouTube continues to be the most important.”

On their site you can sign up to receive free public beta for trends and track the hottest viral videos on the web.  Once you sign up, you can chose a category such as media, dining, etc. You can also refine your search by agency, brand and even get specific about things like humor, reality, spoof, etc.  It will then generate a list of the top videos based on your parameters based on the dates your select.  I picked media for the week of September 6 and one of the top videos it picked up was YouTube Turns Five . . .see below.

Do you want to know the top 10 ad campaigns, top 10 film trailers, top 10 webisodes or those in 100 million view club?  They have the charts.  They have a paid program you can sign up for to find out even more detailed information.  Are you interested in following the Old Spice campaign?  You can type in Old Spice into their search bar and it will pull up a list of their videos, show their rank and their reach. 

To keep up with what Visible Measures has to offer, you can sign up for their blog by clicking here.

5 Useful Sites For Help With WordPress

Collection of WordPress statistics:  http://en.wordpress.com/stats/

WordPress TV visual resources for all things WordPress: http://wordpress.tv/

Video press – Upload and share videos on WordPress – converts your video into multiple formats:  http://videopress.com/?ref=wpcom

WordPress beginners guide: http://www.wpbeginner.com/category/beginners-guide/

How to create a slide show in WordPress: http://wordpress.tv/2010/04/14/using-slideshows-on-wordpress-com/

WordPress Channels Tumblr with Subscriptions

How Subscriptions Work

Let’s say you’re reading a blog on WordPress.com that you really enjoy — so much so you want to be notified when new posts are published so you remember to read them. You can subscribe to this blog really easily by using the “Subscribe” menu in the admin bar. By going up to your admin bar, and clicking “Subscribe to blog”, you’ll be instantly subscribed and all current and future posts will be added to the subscriptions tab on your WordPress.com home screen. To read the rest of the article go to: via WordPress Channels Tumblr with Subscriptions.

To find out more about WordPress  and the new subscription feature by Andy P. at Just Another WordPress Blog click here: http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2010/09/10/introducing-subscriptions/

Advice: How Do I Get People To Read My Blog?

Today’s Question for “Ask Dr. Diane”: Hi Dr. Hamilton right now I am up and promoting my artist Bianka and would like to ask you, how do I get people to read my blogs and visit my artist website. I am new to blogging and would like to know how to start people talking about them. If you can give me some insight on this it will be gratefully appreciated.

There are a lot of good books that give helpful advice about blogging.  I liked the last two books I read:  Career Renegade by Jonathan Fields and Dirty Little Secrets of Buzz by David Seaman.  I also think there are a lot of bloggers like Seth Godin and others that list helpful advice on a regular basis.  Some sites like Mashable and Problogger can be helpful as well.  If you type in the question ‘How do I Get People to Read My Blog”, into Google, I think you can find more advice than you probably can handle. I think some blogs are really good to follow for advice as well.  It can take some time to get blog followers.  You need to post regularly and post information that is targeted toward the people you want to have follow you.  Remember to include your blog address on everything . . .your signature line on your email, your twitter, facebook, linkedin, etc. pages . . . You’ve done one important thing already by responding to a blog (in this case mine). By posting helpful information on other people’s blogs, people can find you as well.  You can go to forums like these to chat with others about it:  http://bit.ly/aDqmQq  . . . http://bit.ly/bbCG5H.   You can start with Twitter as well by following people and posting things from your blog there . . . check out these articles:  http://bit.ly/18qgK3  and http://bit.ly/Zq4Qt.  I’m not sure if the price is still as reasonable as it was (I assume it is), but programs like letsgetsocial.com byKate Beck can be very helpful.   She gives some good advice about how to set up social networking sites.  Her aim is more about starting a social networking business, but I feel her videos are just as helpful to someone like you that is new to the social networking scene.  One big piece of advice is to be sure you are spell checking what you type.  You want to come across as professional as possible.

The Best and Worst Websites

I often teach marketing courses where we discuss the use of websites to promote products.  In one class, I have students compare two different online malls to see their reaction to them.  Without exception, all students prefer one of the sites over the other.  Here are the two sites:  http://www.1mall.com/ and http://virtuallyshopping.com  Can you guess which one they prefer? 

I use certain sites as examples in my courses to show overly busy pages.  I think Godaddy’s site used to be an example of a difficult to navigate site.  However, they have since made some big improvements.   A company may have a great product, but if the average user can’t navigate easily, they may be losing out on business.

I chose my website developer, PS Web Design Studio, because they listened to what I wanted and developed a clean and easy to navigate site.  To see some of their example websites, click here.    Not everyone wants to spend a ton of money to have a site developed.  Many can save money having their site developed using Joomla or other inexpensive applications.  I consider myself pretty tech savvy, but it can help to have the professional touch to add some extra appeal that you may not have considered.  For more information about Joomla, click here.  I also like WordPress for its ease of use and ability to put together a blog with little technical expertise.

For some examples of well-constructed sites check out these links:

http://www.webpractices.com/samplesites.htm

http://sethgodin.com – I tend to like simple sites and Seth Godin’s does everything it needs to do.

http://www.drdaniellebabb.com/ – Dani’s site has a very clean and easy to manage feel. 

https://drdianehamilton.com – I am impartial . . . but I prefer the simple design.

To see some examples of overly busy or poor websites check out these links:

http://www.webpagesthatsuck.com/

http://www.siphawaii.com/

http://www.boogersite.com/boogerSites.cfm

In all of the examples of bad web pages, I think the following one may have my vote for the worst:

 
This may very well be the worst web page of all time.

What is an ePortfolio or Career Portfolio and How Do I Create One?

Today’s Ask Dr. Diane:  When I graduated from high school, I was told to set up a career portfolio.  What is that and how do I do it? 

For a complete explanation for “what is a career portfolio” click here.  The basic definition of a career portfolio is a collection of things that represent your skills and accomplishments.  Like a resume, it contains your education, awards, honors, work experience and strengths. 

There are several ways to develop a career portfolio.  You can find sites where you can pay to upload media you have designed or other things you would like to highlight to potential employers.  There are also a lot of free sites like Linkedin where you can display a lot of your information for others to find you and see your skills and abilities. Many professionals such as educators, journalists, artists and others have used career portfolios for years.  Recently many other types of job-seekers are finding that they want to be able to showcase more of their skills and abilities as well. 

It can take a bit of a time commitment to initially set up your portfolio, but in the end, it will be easier to update and add things once it is prepared. 

Quintcareers.com gives the following examples of things you should include in your portfolio:

  1. Career Summary and Goals: A description of what you stand for (such as work ethic, organizational interests, management philosophy, etc.) and where you see yourself in two to five years.
  2. Professional Philosophy/Mission Statement: A short description of the guiding principles that drive you and give you purpose. Read more in our article, Using a Personal Mission Statement to Chart Your Career Course.
  3. Traditional Resume: A summary of your education, achievements, and work experience, using a chronological or functional format. If you need help developing a resume, visit Quintessential Careers: Fundamentals of a Good Resume.
  4. Scannable/Text-Based Resume: A text-only version of your resume should also be included. More information about this type of resume can be found at: Quintessential Careers: Scannable Resume Fundamentals.
  5. Skills, Abilities and Marketable Qualities: A detailed examination of your skills and experience. This section should include the name of the skill area; the performance or behavior, knowledge, or personal traits that contribute to your success in that skill area; your background and specific experiences that demonstrate your application of the skill.
  6. List of Accomplishments: A detailed listing that highlights the major accomplishments in your career to date. Accomplishments are one of the most important elements of any good job-search. Read more in our article, For Job-Hunting Success: Track and Leverage Your Accomplishments.
  7. Samples of Your Work: A sampling of your best work, including reports, papers, studies, brochures, projects, presentations, etc. Besides print samples, you can also include CD-ROMs, videos, and other multimedia formats.
  8. Research, Publications, Reports: A way to showcase multiple skills, including your written communications abilities. Include any published papers and conference proceedings.
  9. Testimonials and Letters of Recommendations: A collection of any kudos you have received -– from customers, clients, colleagues, past employers, professors, etc. Some experts even suggest including copies of favorable employer evaluations and reviews.
  10. Awards and Honors: A collection of any certificates of awards, honors, and scholarships.
  11. Conference and Workshops: A list of conferences, seminars, and workshops you’ve participated in and/or attended.
  12. Transcripts, Degrees, Licenses, and Certifications: A description of relevant courses, degrees, licenses, and certifications.
  13. Professional Development Activities: A listing of professional associations and conferences attended — and any other professional development activities.
  14. Military records, awards, and badges: A listing of your military service, if applicable.
  15. Volunteering/Community Service: A description of any community service activities, volunteer or pro bono work you have completed, especially as it relates to your career.
  16. References List: A list of three to five people (including full names, titles, addresses, and phone/email) who are willing to speak about your strengths, abilities, and experience. At least one reference should be a former manager. Read more in our article: The Keys to Choosing and Using the Best Job References in Your Job Search.

eHow has a useful article for how to create your online career portfolio for free. 

They also suggest the following tips and warnings:

Tips & Warnings

  • Creating an online portfolio will increase your chance of landing your dream job
  • Always be honest with yourself when displaying your qualifications
  • Give your website address to prospective employers to market yourself
  • Don’t be dishonest because it will backfire!
  • Only give your website to legitimate employers
  • Do not include official transcripts online because it includes your SSN
  • Only give your personal information to only jobs you have applied for
  • Do not include your web portfolio address on your online resume with any online career site such as Monster, Hot Jobs, Vault and Career Path. Read more by clicking here.

The Fox School of Business had an interesting article about how you should spend a moment to Google yourself to see what others might find out about you online.  They reference the following statistics:  44% of hiring managers use google, myspace, and facebook to do online background checks on candidates. Nearly 1/3 of these background checks lead to rejection of a candidate.

Some tips they suggest to create your own online image include:

  1. Join Linkedin.com.  This is a great site that will allow you to create a professional social networking “resume” and allows you the chance to connect to a lot of great contacts.  Your linkedin.com profile will also show up when you google your name.  Use this to your advantage and list all of your strengths, education, and experience using well written short descriptions. 
  2. Start a blog.  Starting a blog is not just for people with uncommon niche interests.  Find a topic you find interesting and is relevant to your professional life and write in it often.  Read other blogs on industry news and comment.  All of these small things will help to create a good social presence for your on the internet. 
  3. Check your Myspace and Facebook profiles.  If there is anything that would give an employer the wrong impression of you, take it down!  Pictures should be professional.  You can stand out from the pack if you use your myspace or facebook page as another tool in your job search strategy.  Not everyone has the attitude of “it’s just a social profile.”  Make sure all privacy settings are enabled so only close friends can see things about you.
  4. For those more web savvy people, start a website or create an online resume.  These can be great additions to your paper resume and you can certainly include a link to your online resume on your paper resume and in any footings or signatures of any emails you send to employers regarding your job search.   You can detail more experiences, share some volunteer experiences and even include pictures, showcase some examples of your work.  Be careful with this though….professionalism is of utmost importance.

A useful student-centered platform for building an eportfolio is available at eportfolio.org.  Once you register, you can set up your portfolio as a student, faculty or institution.  You can then control what goes into your portfolio, who can see it, and can create several versions of it to use based on who you want to view it.  There are fees for this based on how many megabytes of storage you would require. 

In schools, some students are being taught to create web pages using a virtual learning environmental (VLE) that are not as easily accessible outside of the environment in which they are created.  A good alternative for a student who wants a format that is easier to share outside a school environment, would be to get signed up with a free account on Linkedin.  Linkedin has added a lot of features that allows people to showcase more than just work experience.  Users can also import Google Docs presentations, include a WordPress blog, and there are many more options available to update and promote abilities to prospective employers or potential connections.

For an example of a Linkedin portfolio, you can look at mine by clicking here.  To see all of the options I have added to mine, you can send me a request to be linkedin with you.  I accept all invitations.  At that point, you can see how I have incorporated Google Docs, WordPress and other features to display my information.

Associate Professor Writes Book for Online Students

Story by Trevor GreenUAT.edu

Advances in computer technology have made education available to students far removed from a traditional classroom, with universities of all sizes instructing learners digitally – never physically interacting with their teachers. For many students, the trappings of online classes – writing papers, using course shells, submitting work – is a foreign concept that can impede academic progress.

UAT-Online Associate Professor Dr. Diane Hamilton, a longtime online instructor, recently published the book The Online Student’s User Manual to help them succeed. She was compelled to write the paperback after finding a lack of works covering frequently asked questions of first-time online learners.

“The books out there, they’re good about telling you, ‘online’s good.’ They’re good about telling you, ‘you need accredited,’ or what the other choices are or how to get financing, but they don’t tell you what you’re supposed to do,” she said.

She added: “I kept answering the same questions over and over and over, and I thought, ‘Well, how about writing a book that explains it?'”

(To learn more about Dr. Hamilton and her book, The Online Student’s User Manual, check click here.)

Hamilton develops curriculum and teaches classes like Ethics in Technology and Foresight Development for UAT-Online. Possessing a Ph.D. in business administration and career experience in corporate training, entrepreneurship and realty, she melds her years of business and technology knowledge to computer-savvy students.

With content on everything from rubrics and syllabi to essay formatting, Hamilton sees her work as a good aid for online pupils and instructors of various ages, skill levels, disciplines and educational backgrounds.

“I think the book’s a good resource, not just for new students but for people who have been in it for awhile, or even professors to know how to teach people how to do these things.”

A self-professed techie, Hamilton picked up various facets of Web 2.0 technology – including blogging and Twitter – to market the book, and she offers advice for students on her blog with tutorials using screen-recording software Camtasia and Microsoft PowerPoint. She sees the breadth of electronic tools as essential to embracing distance teaching.

“I like to embrace new technology, and I think students have to realize that [online learning] is the future.”

Think of Technology When Managing Class Assignments | CollegeSurfing Insider

was with a group of college students this week recently who brought their planners with them to schedule events throughout the semester. I was surprised at how most of the dozen students brought paper calendars and planners, instead of plugging the dates into calendars on their phones or computers.

I understand the reluctance to put all assignments in a calendar or file on the computer or to use the calendar and to-do apps on an iPhone or Blackberry. There’s always the concern, especially with students who aren’t that tech-savvy, that something could happen with the phone or computer and all of that crucial information for a college student seeking to ace a class would be lost. Talk about a stressful situation.

Maybe it’s easier to contemplate going virtual with assignments and calendars when you’re taking an online class. All the class information is online, so why shouldn’t your planning and time management for assignments be on the computer, too?

Diane Hamilton, author of “The Online Student’s User Manual,” says she’s a fan of the free iGoogle service because it allows students to keep track of and access their calendars and course information from anywhere. That’s helpful, even in the worst-case scenario.

Hamilton, who teaches for six online universities, says that even if your computer crashes, your schedules and assignments will be accessible through any computer.

Have you tried using iGoogle or other sites to manage your college coursework and other activities, and what have you found are the pros? Or what should students know if they’re trying to use more web tools to manage their assignments?

-Lori Johnston