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Tips for Tracking Ad Hoc Work

In a 1785 Scots poem that’s all but unintelligible to modern speakers of American English, Robert Burns penned the following immortal line: “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft agley.” More than 230 years later, the best laid plans of mice and men still often go awry. Mice, at least, have an excuse. Besides their obvious cognitive disadvantages, the average mouse also lacks access to modern time tracking and project planning software solutions. (The mice of N.I.M.H. are possible exceptions.) So why are human work teams, which have cognitive ability to spare and proven project management principles at their... Read More

New Year, New Goals: Solving Your Agency Challenges in 2016

Agency life may be a respected and even glamorous endeavor, but running an agency is also a tough, cutthroat, and often thankless job. Agencies no longer reign supreme; there are new sources of competition, shrinking profits, and the revolving door of talent turnover. In-house agencies are on the rise and many online ads are purchased and sold automatically. These changes have drawn away both clients and creative talent, while placing pricing pressure on agencies by clients of all sizes. The ever-changing digital age presents new agency challenges—but the beginning of a new year can be a great time to energize... Read More

How to Be a Better Manager

Marcus Varner
Marcus Varner

Say you find yourself sitting in front of your boss, and he/she wants to know what your team worked on this month or quarter and what you have planned to work on in the coming month or quarter. If you're a team lead, manager, or director, this is a highly likely scenario. After all, it's exactly the kind of info your boss needs to do his/her job properly. Unfortunately, it's equally likely that you won't be able to give him/her a definitive answer. Although most work managers can give their supervisor an anecdotal snapshot of what their team members did over... Read More

Managing Remote Employees

In the workplace of the future, pants may no longer be required. As more and more knowledge workers work remotely at least some of the time (telecommuting increased 79.7% from 2005 to 2012), “casual Fridays” are likely to take on a whole new meaning. Sales of fuzzy bunny slippers are expected to surpass dress shoes before the end of the decade.* Seriously, though, statistics (real ones) show that 50% of the U.S. workforce holds a job that is compatible for some telework, while 79% of employees would like to work from home at least part of the time. Other estimates say that... Read More

Helping Your Team Manage & Track Time

If you’re looking to improve time management on your team, time tracking is the place to start. While this is undoubtedly an unpopular topic among most employees, it is nevertheless essential if you want the ability to consistently meet deadlines, forecast future bandwidth, and effectively allocate resources. In some ways, it all comes down to your skills as a manager. Initially, your employees won’t be any more eager to track the hours they spend on individual tasks than they are to update spreadsheets, fill out expense reports, or complete other required chores that seem like distractions from their “real” work.... Read More

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