Tuesday, June 6, 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EasternData Knows Best: What Research Says About Your Client’s Retirement PlanningKim Blanton, author of the retirement blog Squared Away will present the sobering statistics about retirement planning.Wednesday, June 7, 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 pm EasternThe New RetirementalityAuthor of the book of the same name, Mitch Anthony, will talk about the new way folks are viewing and planning for retirement.Thursday, June 8, 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EasternCatch-Up Retirement Saving StrategiesDr. Barbara O’Neill will take on the task of finding ways savers can make up for lost time and save the money they’ll need in retirement.In the interim, be sure to join us for our May learning opportunities, many of which offer free CE credit (including the podcasts!). For a full listing of all upcoming programming, click here. Click graphic to enlarge. Summer is right around the corner … which means it’s almost time for the MFLN Personal Finance Virtual Learning Event! This year’s VLE is one you absolutely don’t want to miss. Join the Personal Finance team and our panel of expert speakers from June 6-8 to dive deep into the world of retirement planning. Visit the links below to register and see details:
By: Bari Sobelson & Hannah HydePixabay[Coins by Olichel, CC0]Change is important to personal finance managers. I’m not just talking about the kind you find at the bottom of your purse or in your pockets; I’m referring to the inevitable kind that we all face as humans on a regular basis. At its root, personal finance work is about helping clients become aware of, understand, and prepare for the inevitable change that will come with life within the context of their financial planning.So why all of this talk about change?We have an opportunity for you that you won’t want to pass up next month! Starting on September 26th, we will be offering a four-day virtual conference that is all about change! Whether you come as a PFM who is interested in assisting your clients with the multitude of changes they may experience, or as a person who is interested in learning about managing change in your own personal life, this conference is for you!This will be unlike any conference you have attended before—there will be keynotes, opportunities for conversation and networking, and a wide variety of topics surrounding change! So, if you want to keep the change, join us for this conference! You won’t regret it! To find out more information on this virtual conference, click here. We hope to see you there as we all LEARN strategies for managing change, GROW our understanding of our capacity for change, and begin to THRIVE as we connect with colleagues facing similar challenges!This blog was written by Social Media Specialists Bari Sobelson of the MFLN Family Development Team and Hannah Hyde of the MFLN Military Caregiving Team. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network on our website, Facebook, and Twitter.
Image created by Christopher Plein, Ph.D., 2018. Return to article. Long DescriptionRecently, I made a community presentation to social workers, education specialists, healthcare prevention workers and other helping professionals in my home state of West Virginia. Among those in attendance were professionals working with veterans, some of whom are long retired and others more recently separated from military service.The meeting helped my thoughts turn again to how closely military families are tied to the “civilian world.” I introduced the group to the work that we do in the Military Families Learning Network emphasizing the common bonds that we all share in helping families. We talked about recent trends in Medicare and Medicaid and possible future developments for these two keystones of the American health system.Active duty military families may find that family and loved ones are eligible for these programs due to health conditions, age or economic need. Those facing retirement and separation from the military also need to consider the road ahead and how Medicaid and Medicare may figure into their plans.Most know that Medicare is a federal health insurance program primarily for those over 65 years of age. It also serves those with specific diseases and disabilities. Medicaid operates as a state-federal partnership providing health insurance for lower income populations as well as those with special health conditions and disabilities. As we have noted in previous blogs and webinars, these programs are a complex yet vital part of our healthcare infrastructure.For well over a decade, both programs have changed due to various federal legislative and regulatory reforms. The best known of these is the Affordable Care Act of 2010 which made some revisions to Medicare but most importantly allowed for Medicaid expansion to newly eligible populations of low income adults.Along with demographic changes in our population (many of us are getting older), policy changes are resulting in more and more Americans being covered by either Medicaid or Medicare. Currently, 33 percent of the U.S. population is covered by one or the other helping to bring our overall uninsured rate down to 9 percent.Utilizing helpful data from the Kaiser Family Foundation and comparing these to data on active duty military populations in the states, we offer a quick glimpse of trends in the tables and charts below.As noted in a previous blog, almost half (49 percent) of all active duty military are based in just five states: California, Virginia, Texas, North Carolina, and Georgia. The table below is from that blog that and relies on data from Defense Manpower Data Center (MDDC). We’ll call these states the “Big Five.” Texas16%11%15% Source: Health Insurance Coverage of the Total Population, Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2016Both Virginia and Texas lag behind the national average for Medicaid and Medicare coverage. However, the picture in Virginia may change soon as it has recently passed legislation to expand Medicaid.Because Medicaid and Medicare can figure so prominently in providing assistance to family members, it is worth considering the status of these programs when making location and caregiving decisions. While Medicare coverage provisions are uniform across the United States, Medicaid varies widely from state to state.One trend that we can anticipate is that more states, even in traditionally “red” regions, will decide to expand Medicaid in order to help lower income adults. In the 2018 mid-term elections, three states, Idaho, Nebraska, and Utah all approved ballot measures to expand Medicaid eligibility to new low income groups.More broadly, there is growing interest in expanding Medicare coverage to new populations. This would be a real game changer — especially for those who have difficulty accessing care due to health conditions or age. There are active discussions and legislative proposals now being considered to allow those nearing retirement age (say between the ages of 55 and 64) and those with serious health conditions to “buy-in” to Medicare at a reduced premium or to be entitled to the program. Excellent and accessible analysis and reporting on these developments can be found online through the Kaiser Family Foundation.In the months to come, we should anticipate further conversations about Medicaid and Medicare as platforms for healthcare coverage and access. New Medicaid expansion efforts in states will no doubt inspire others, but will also have their own share of growing pains and difficulties. As for Medicare, we can anticipate that both sides of the aisle will give active consideration to ideas on how this program can help those in need.Note: The research assistance of Lonnie Long, MPA student and MFLN Military Caregiving special needs graduate assistant in preparing this blog is appreciated. Georgia17%12%12% North Carolina18%15%11% MedicaidMedicareUninsured United States19%14%9% Written by: Christopher Plein, Ph.D. West Virginia University and MFLN Military Caregiving Team Return to article. Long DescriptionSource: Understanding Military Assignment Dynamics in the U.S.: A Look at the Data & Some Questions to Ponder (Plein, 2018).Medicaid & Medicare EnrollmentNow let’s take a look at Medicaid and Medicare enrollment trends in these states. What we find is an interesting and varied portrait of what is happening. In California, for example, 36 percent of the population is covered by either Medicaid or Medicare. To date, California is the only state among the “Big Five” to implement an expanded Medicaid program. By expanding Medicaid coverage to previously ineligible groups, enrollment numbers have increased. As the data suggest, this helps to reduce overall uninsured rates. This image (ID: 184954118) was purchased by MFLNMC from iStock.com under member ID 8085767. California25%11%8% Virginia 12%14%10%
Discover the recent changes to the audio meters in Adobe Premiere Pro CS6. The improved meters are much easier to use and able to provide better info for audio editing. Here’s the scoop…Audio is a very important part of video production simply because good audio carries the message and reinforces the images we work with. Don’t make the mistake of overlooking the audio in your video editing project! In this post, we’ll cover the changes made to the audio meters in Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 and how they can be used to improve the audio quality in your video editing.As you can see from the following pictures there have been big changes to the audio meters in Premiere Pro CS6 from previous versions.One of the biggest changes is that the meter in the main user interface now fits whatever size you make it whereas in previous versions it always stayed the same size and orientation.CS6 Audio Meters WideCS6 Audio Meters Placed Wide at the Bottom of the Work SpaceYou can see at once that this ability to re-size and fill whatever gap it is given aids tremendously in getting a far better layout for you work-space as well as allowing you to have a greater sensitivity in your view (i.e. in general longer bars are easier to see and work with than shorter bars).Another great change is that this ability to resize has been added to the whole Audio Mixer Panel which means that no matter how large you make it the meters will scale accordingly. While not going beyond a certain point, the meters will also scale into a very small space and still be visible in CS6:CS5.5 Audio Mixer Panel LengthenedCS6 Audio Mixer Panel LengthenedCS6 Audio Mixer Panel Shortened Premiere Pro Audio Mixer PanelAs well as making the graphs much easier to use, Adobe have also added a new right-click menu which means we can have even more feedback and use out of these meters.NOTE: Make sure you are right-clicking on the black bar in the middle and not on the scale to one side as the only option you will get at that point is the ‘Safe During Write’ option.New Right-Click Menu (Audio Mixer Panel)If you choose any of the other ranges than the default 60 dB Range it won’t change the audio. Instead it will show either a wider or a more limited range in the meter itself. So, if you have some very sensitive audio you want to work with you may find having a wider range such as the 120 dB Range easier to work with than the typical 60 dB range.Dynamic and Static Audio PeaksPeaksThe default setting in Adobe Premiere Pro is as shown above – Dynamic Peaks. What this means is that the little lines shown above will move to show the highest level that your audio gets to for a short time before falling back or moving up to a new level several seconds later. The idea behind this is to give you feedback as to how dynamic your audio is being with a peak staying put for a short while as an indication while the rest of the meter moves.However, if you want to see the maximum values for the whole piece you can change this to ‘Static Peaks‘ from the right-click menu which will mean that these peak indicators will move to the maximum level your audio gets to and simply stay there for the rest of the playback or until you right-click again and choose ‘Reset Indicators’. This can be helpful, but my own preference is to use dynamic peaks and keep the audio below the RED limit level.RED Distortion or ‘Over’ IndicatorsIf you get either of these RED indicators showing at the top of your audio meters it means that your audio for that channel has distorted and should be turned down. It is very bad to get audio peaking in this RED zone as it will play back very badly on any equipment further down the line and so should be avoided.Show Valleys in Premiere Pro‘Show Valleys‘ is very similar to the peak indicators mentioned above. The only real difference is that these indicators show the lowest point of your audio instead of the highest point. Once again, if you choose Dynamic or Static Peaks this will affect both the high peaks and the valley peaks making them persistent or transitory as needed.Audio Color GradientsThe last right-click option on an audio meter in the Premiere Audio Mixer Panel is that of either showing a color gradient or having the colors in the bar change in steps. The image below shows what it looks like with the option in steps (unchecked).Color Gradient Unchecked As you can see, the -18 dB and the -6 dB levels are really clear if you uncheck this option. However, I prefer to leave this option checked in general as it gives a nicer look to my eye and I don’t generally need to be too precise about these levels – that said, should I need to be more precise I now have the option to turn off the gradient if I wish.Lastly, if you right-click on the main Audio Meter in the normal user interface you will find that you have a couple of extra options that don’t come up when you right-click in the Audio Mixer Panel. These include:Extra Options in the Right-Click Menu for the Main UI Audio MixerSolo Channel OptionsAnother interesting feature Adobe has added, which is especially helpful when dealing with multi-channel masters and 5.1 surround-sound masters, is the ability to solo selected channels right from the audio meters. As you can see from the image below, the default setting is to have all the channels ‘soloed’ such that hitting any of the little ‘S’ buttons will turn that channel off.Monitor Mono Channels This option will only work with adaptive clips played in the Source Monitor and for sequences which have multichannel masters played in either the Source Monitor or the Timeline. What it does is allow you to play mono clips through both speakers at the same time – which can be a lot easier on the ear!Monitor Stereo PairsThis function will only work if you have a multichannel master played from the Timeline and what it does is allow you to listen to stereo linked channels instead of all the channels at the same time. For example, if your stereo pair was on channel 7 & 8 you could select to just listen to them with this option.Well, that’s a quick look at the very well redesigned audio meters in both the main user interface as well as in the Audio Mixer Panel. As you can see, these audio improvements in Premiere Pro CS6 can be quite useful in working with audio in your video editing projects.
The following video puts popular non-linear editing applications to the test, determining which best preserves your audio when applying speed changes. Interesting results!Need to speed up or slow down your audio in post? Video editor and Vimeo user Brooks Tomlinson recently conducted a test to see which video or editing application is best at modifying the speed of audio. Final Cut Pro X has been lauded by some as doing a fine job at preserving audio pitch and quality when applying speed changes, but Brooks wasn’t so sure. So, he took a short piece of narration and ran it through different non-linear video and audio editing applications, applying a 105%, 125% and 95% speed change.The test applications included:Apple Final Cut Pro XApple Soundtrack ProAutodesk Smoke 2013Adobe Premiere Pro CS6Adobe Audition CS6Avid DS 8.4Click the video below to hear the differences in audio quality as each application processes the speed changes. Discover which application provides the highest quality (hint: you get what you pay for!)
Take a trip down memory lane with this compilation of the Oscar winners for Best Visual Effects.This video montage by independent filmmaker and editor Nelson Carvajal has been making the rounds over the ‘net, and is a real treat for filmmakers and movie buffs. Nelson has compiled a montage of the winners of The Academy Award for Best Visual Effects since 1977, the first year this award began to appear as a regular category by the Academy.It’s amazing to see how VFX have improved so much since then, and also interesting to note how many films that were “way ahead of their time” in regards to their special effects work. Do you recognize each of the films in the montage? Check out the full list below.Thanks for sharing this great montage of film history, Nelson!Academy Award for Best Visual Effects1977: Star Wars1978: Superman (Special Achievement Award)1979: Alien1980: The Empire Strikes Back (Special Achievement Award)1981: Raiders of the Lost Ark1982: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial1983: Return of the Jedi (Special Achievement Award)1984: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom1985: Cocoon1986: Aliens1987: Innerspace1988: Who Framed Roger Rabbit1989: The Abyss1990: Total Recall (Special Achievement Award1991: Terminator 2: Judgement Day1992: Death Becomes Her1993: Jurassic Park1994: Forrest Gump1995: Babe1996: Independence Day1997: Titanic1998: What Dreams May Come1999: The Matrix2000: Gladiator2001: The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring2002: The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers2003: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 2004: Spider-Man 22005: King Kong2006: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest2007: The Golden Compass2008: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button2009: Avatar2010: Inception2011: Hugo2012: Life of Pi
If you’ve not experienced Dolby Atmos just yet, you might be wondering what’s so great about it. These industry experts will set you straight.Dolby Atmos is the future of cinema sound. While the industry might be going crazy over the number of K’s images can be shot on and projected with, cinema sound hasn’t advanced that much (so it would seem) in the past several decades. Until now. Dolby Atmos first hit just a few theatres in the summer of 2012 with Pixar’s Brave being the first feature film to make use of the new system, but is now available in a growing number of cinemas worldwide.In this latest Dolby promo you can learn a lot more about why director of photography turned director, Wally Pfister thinks Atmos is the IMAX of audio, and how he put it to good use in Transcendence.Understanding Dolby AtmosIf you want to get a decent understanding of what Dolby Atmos actually is – and how it works, then these two videos will give you the full picture. The second features a fairly decent history of the evolution of cinema sound and a detailed description of the inside workings of surround sound.Dolby Atmos in the CinemaDolby’s sound consultants chat with film critic Peter Cowie about how Dolby Atmos can shape as well as enhance the filmmaker’s sound design possibilities. When Alfonso Cuaron and Gravity‘s Oscar winning sound designer want to come to hear their film in your cinema, you know you’re doing something right. So it is for the owners of Olympic Cinema in London, talking about just how spectacular Dolby Atmos really is.If you want to find a Dolby Atmos equipped cinema near you then simply hop over to iwantdolbyatmos.dolby.com.More Posts on Cinema Sound DesignIf all this talk of cinema sound design has whet your appetite to learn more then check out these previous posts on the topic.Fellow PremiumBeat blogger, Matt Hibbard has put together this excellent post called Sound Design 101: Making your Film Sound Great. Danny Greer has also posted this great tutorial on mapping out your sound design for indie filmmakers. This last PremiumBeat post discusses how to work well with a film composer to successfully score your film. Finally you can also check out the category of posts devoted to sound design over on my blog.
Need to convert your video to GIF? Check out 3 of our favorite FREE video to GIF applications.Whether it’s motion graphic loops or simply small video clips, GIFs are a great way to display your work online. This file type has had a resurgence in popularity over the last few years thanks to sites like BuzzFeed and the endless meme GIFs that circulate around the ‘net.Many video pros and motion designers are using GIFs in a practical way – to show a quick snapshot of their work in their online video portfolios. See great examples of this over on Dribbble. Unfortunately, GIF encoding apps are notorious for being incredibly spammy and using Photoshop to create GIFs can be somewhat time-consuming. Luckily there are a few simple drag-and-drop applications that do it much quicker.1. GIF RocketEncoded by GifRocketGif Rocket is our favorite free video to GIF application here at PremiumBeat. It has a drag-and-drop interface that makes converting videos incredibly easy. In addition to being easy to navigate, GIF Rocket gives users the ability to change quality and file size of the outputted file. You can even make some very basic edits in the GIF Rocket menu screen. But it’s currently a ‘no-go’ for Windows users – GIF Rocket is only available on the Mac OSX.Pros: Easy to navigate, clean design, easily adjust size and qualityCons: Lack of features like crop and frame rate, only available for Mac.2. InstagifferEncoded by InstagifferInstagiffer is the Swiss Army knife of GIF conversion applications. It seemingly has every file setting you could possibly want to manipulate and some. You can adjust basic things like size, quality, and start time, as well as frame rate, brightness, and playback rate. Instagiffer also has a few stylization presets that can optimize your video for the web.Our favorite feature in Instagiffer is the “Capture Screen” function that allows users to create a GIF screen capture. It’s a really good tool to use if you are wanting to create a quick image based tutorial.Pros: Very customizable, avaliable on Mac and PC, includes screen captureCons: Interface is outdated3. ZamzarEncoded by ZamZarZamzar is an online conversion software that offers a range of file converstions. With Zamzar, you’re easily able to convert most video formats to GIFs, but you can also convert them to MP3’s, JPEG’s, Kindle Fire presets, and even Zune video. Because the conversion happens on Zamzar servers (and not on your own computer) it takes a little more time to get the final file prepared. Zamzar will simply emails you when your file is complete.Pros: Dozens of potential formats, no download requiredCons: Must give email, conversions can be slowKnow of any other GIF converting applications? Let us know in the comments below.
The duotone color style can work really well as a more experimental look. Achieving great results only takes two very simple steps in DaVinci Resolve.On the surface, some of the more extreme color looks appear to be complicated to execute, but in reality are actually quite simple. The duotone look certainly falls into this category, as it’s one of the quickest and easiest looks to build in just about any color software or NLE.I used DaVinci Resolve for this particular example, but these same principles can be applied to whatever tool you’re using. To achieve the look, you can start with any image as your base. Here’s an uncolored shot that I’ll be using as an example for this post:Step 1Once brought into the software, the first step is to simply desaturate the image in full. You’ll be left with a black and white shot.I typically do this on the first node and then create a second node for the rest of the color work.Step 2With the image already desaturated, I’ll simply push the shadows very far in one direction (in this case blue) and the highlights in the other direction (orange).The key with this technique is to use colors that will complement each other well. You could use two shades of blue for example, but when using blue and orange, the effect is much more pronounced and a more extreme look can be created. Here’s the end result after only two adjustments.Other OptionsThere are a number of other ways you can achieve this kind of look. Much like working in Photoshop, when you’re dealing with color correction software there are often ten different paths you can take to get to the same result. In this case though, I find the method outlined above to be the quickest and most effective. Alternatively, if you like working with RGB curves, you can adjust your levels that way instead of using the color wheels. You can also adjust your midtones as you see fit to craft an even more extreme look.What are some of your favorite extreme looks? Got any DaVinci Resolve tricks you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below.
Movie props are an often overlooked item, but they are essential to your film’s storytelling. Check out some great movie props, and learn to make your own with these resources.Top Image via TestedTo get an idea on the importance of movie props, check out this great video from Rishi Kaneria. Take a look at the hidden power of props and how filmmakers use everyday objects to keep the audience invested in the story.Movie props don’t have to be expensive. You can use everyday objects. Even major motion pictures use objects that are just lying around.You can even use some of the camera gear you have lying around. It looked great in Aliens, when the crew used steadicam arms for smart guns. It can also look not so great, like turning an old camera into a heatseeking missile launcher in xXx. Check out this video from Watch Mojo which features some great simple props.If you are interested in making your own props, there are some amazing resources out there.The Replica Prop ForumThe Replica Prop Forum, commonly called the RPF, is an absolutely fantastic resource. Members share their building techniques on how they made some of their favorite movie props. The benefit on learning how to make famous props is the experience of crafting intricate items out of everyday objects.Not only do members talk about the props they made, but also costumes, makeup, and some special effects. An active member of the RPF is Adam Savage of Mythbusters fame, which leads us to our next site.TestedTested is a great site for all sorts of awesome news. The site was founded by the Mythbusters crew, who show you all sorts of things. They talk about making props, new exciting camera gear and drones, and all sorts of awesome geek and nerd news.One of their most popular tutorials of all time will help you get ready for Star Wars: Episode VII. Check out this tutorial on casting your own lightsaber. AWE Me DIY Prop ShopThe AWE Me DIY Prop Shop YouTube channel is a great simple low budget DIY resource. These DIY props aren’t supposed to be movie accurate, rather just great looking tributes. They’ve already made tons of iconic pieces from all sorts of movies. Be sure to check out their great videos.
ZacutoZacuto displayed the new Gratical Eye SDI electronic viewfinder. It’s the company’s smallest and lightest Micro OLED EVF. With a 75Wh battery, the Gratical Eye can be powered for 14 hours. The Gratical Eye is scheduled to ship in May.Here’s a look at the Gratical Eye from Zacuto. EdelkroneEdelkrone made a couple of announcements that gained attention. Up first was their new StandPLUS — a bizarre looking collapsible tripod/stand hybrid. The Stand Plus allows users to quickly set their camera in place without adjusting any knobs or controls.The company also announced a new follow focus available in May for $199 — the FocusONE.Edelkrone also revealed the JibPlus, which offers automated pan, tilt, and focus to your existing rig. The JibPlus comes with a controller, sensor module, and 2-axis head with focus motor.Finally, they showed off the new RigONE, an all-in-one rig solution for lightweight cameras. The rig can carry up to 6.6 lbs and is optimized for DSLR and mirrorless cameras. Tons of new dollies, gimbals, drones, and more made headlines at NAB 2016. Here’s a look at the best new rigs out there.Top image via EdelkroneNearly every accessory manufacturer just debuted a new device designed to help cinematographers. Here are some of the best new support rigs we saw at NAB 2016.KesslerOn the NAB floor, Kessler is showcasing the new Shuttle Dolly, a stellar compact dolly system with a 125 lb capacity. The Shuttle Dolly itself weighs 34 lbs and the base kit starts at $1,100.If you’re interested in trying any Kessler gear, you’ll be thrilled to hear about the company’s new Try Before You Buy collaboration with LensProToGo. When you rent Kessler gear from LensProToGo, be sure to click on the Try Before You Buy box. When you decide to make a purchase, Kessler will give you a discount for the amount of the rental cost, up to 15% off of the purchase price. The promotion is only valid on Kessler gear from LensProToGo through May 31, 2016. Discounts will be honored through June 30, 2016.Here is a look at the Kessler Shuttle Dolly from No Film School. Redrock MicroRedrock Micro demonstrated their Eclipse system, which helps operators keep focus while operating gimbals and drones. The Eclipse is a combination of the Atlas wireless focus and iris motors, the Halo autofocus system, and the Orbit swivel arm that keeps your monitor in view while moving the gimbal around. DJIWe’ve already covered DJI’s major announcement, the new Matrice 600 cinematic drone and Ronin-MX. The Ronin-MX was designed to not only capture stable shots on the ground, but quickly attach to the Matrice 600 for aerials.Since that write-up, No Film School got a close-up look at the new Osmo RAW. This version of the Osmo features the Zenmuse X5R camera, which can record on a solid-state drive and features a Micro Four Thirds mount.For those already with an Osmo, you’ll be thrilled to hear about the new Z-Axis which eliminates the terrible shock of an operator’s footsteps. Here’s a look at the Z-Axis from Cinema5D. The Z-Axis is available for $128. Vocas SpiderThe new Vocas Spider System is a modular camera support system designed for an array of cameras. The lightweight system is ideal for quick run-and-gun shoots. Here’s a look a the rig from Cinema5D.What must-have new gear did you see at NAB 2016? Share your wish list in the comments below!
There are a lot of people who are happy to offer you the advice that you should never cold call. Here is a list of the people whose bad advice on cold calling you should ignore:Anyone who profits from your adopting the belief that cold calling doesn’t work. These charlatans are putting their financial interests over your own. They are preying on your fears and weaknesses.Anyone who has never sold professionally. The person suggesting that you abandon the phone has never carried a bag or had to make a number; they do not have the requisite experience to give you this advice. They are simply parroting what they hear other people say without no personal knowledge.Anyone who tells you that cold calling did not work for them. The fact that the person offering this advice wasn’t good at cold calling does not mean that that is a universal experience. A lot of diets work for people who follow them but not for people who don’t. Do not allow yourself to be infected by other people’s beliefs or limitations.Anyone who gets paid to create content for companies that sell services to sales people and sales organizations. The fact that someone is a writer for a blog belonging to a company in the sales space is no evidence that they have the expertise or credibility to speak about cold calling. A writer isn’t a salesperson, sales manager, or sales leader. They don’t make cold calls.Anyone who sends emails offering you lead generation services and promising to build your funnel using email. The email that you received is this company’s exact approach. How effective was their approach when they used it to obtain your business?Confirmation bias is looking for information that supports what you believe and refusing to entertain information that conflicts with your beliefs. It can be dangerous. If something makes you uncomfortable, it usually means that it is an idea worth exploring further.
Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now We have sliced sales roles so thinly that the role of sales no longer makes any sense.The very limited role of BDR has been relegated to prospecting, and more specifically, qualifying. Even though being “qualified” creates no value for the prospective client, and even though their prospects avoid the appointments they agree to because the BDR has created so little value that they can’t see wasting any more time.The SDR role has morphed into something heretofore unimaginable: a sales role with little or no responsibility to prospect. The rationale is that the best value creators should only spend their time with “qualified” opportunities. The inaneness of this decision is staggering. The idea that the person who can—and should—create the most value should not prospect ignores the reality of prospecting, namely the fact that you better have deep chops and be a serious value creator, or you have no value to trade for the meeting you are requesting.The SDRs, who are supposed to occupy the high perch of trusted advisor, can offer only to bring a SME to a sales call, upon which they have become completely dependent. This, regardless of the fact that they have heard the SME’s shtick eleven times over the past three months. Sure, the salesperson should be the strategic orchestrator of the resources you need to bring to bear on an opportunity. But shouldn’t they know enough about the music being played to have a reasonable picture of what you do, how you create value, and a conversational knowledge of everything everyone on their team knows?The idea of turning opportunities over to an account executive to capture the opportunity created by another person is a strange discontinuity. The client thinks, “I was working with this person, then they brought in these experts, and now I am being handed off to a new person, one who hasn’t been involved in any of this up to the point.”Once the client is won, a new account manager enters the picture. This person is designed to handle their day-to-day needs, and the account executive and the rest of the many other “sales” people all disappear, allegedly on to hunt for the next opportunity. The account manager is supposed to be a farmer, but they are also expected to hunt inside their account, even though they don’t posses both of those skill sets.This is Taylorism taken too far. The division of labor is no longer reasonable or effective, and it it no longer considers what is necessary to serve clients, nor what is necessary to win deals.
Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now What got you here is discipline, an iron discipline. It was your work ethic, the fact that you did the work without hesitation, procrastination, and without fail. While others put off doing what is necessary, you took action, doing what is vital to the future you were pulling forward.You got here in no small measure by being resourceful, taking chances, trying things, and figuring out for yourself what works, much of the time without so much as a clue. While others feared failing, you embraced it. While they waited for someone to give them an answer, you found one on your own.The foundation of what brought you to this point was integrity, the unwavering character that caused others to believe you, believe in you, and to support you. Where others took shortcuts and played outside the rules of the game, you played hard and played fair, knowing you were building your name, the most important asset you would ever own.Those who don’t get to this place are still where they find themselves through the actions they took. If you don’t like where you are, what got you here will keep you here.What caused you to find yourself where you are now is the lack of discipline that prevented you from working and instead had you seek comfort, entertainment, distraction, and escape. Now you suffer, enslaved by a tyrant of your own making.Your lack of resourcefulness, the learned helplessness, and the decision to give up without putting forth the effort you are capable brought you to where you are not. An unwillingness to try, to experiment, and to fail only to persist and try again is a recipe for not having the life you want.Many find themselves in a place they don’t like because they tried to bend or break the rules, instead bending and breaking themselves against the rules. Success knows whether you’ve really done the work, and so does karma, neither being partial to those who try to cheat the laws of nature.If you are where you want to be, what got you here is a large part of what will help you go even further. If you are not where you want to be, what got you here will keep you here until you change.
Ahead of the Indian National Lok Dal’s (INLD) plan of marching towards Punjab on February 23 in an attempt to dig the controversial Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Wednesday said that the issue should not be politicised.“An all-party delegation led by him had called on the President of India on this issue and he had given a patient hearing. Supreme Court has already repealed the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act-2004 passed by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha and now the matter was pending with the apex court for implementation,” said Mr. Khattar.He said that though the SYL issue was sub-judice, Haryana should get its due share of water. “I’m hopeful that the State would get its rightful share,” he said.“I urge to the people and other political parties not to take law in their own hands. Even though this issue is related to Punjab government yet I believe that peace would prevail in the State,” he said, adding the law and order situation in Haryana would be maintained.INLD leader Abhay Chautala has announced that party worker would march towards Punjab after gathering in Ambala’s grain market – to dig SYL canal in an attempt to get its share of water.Barricades erectedIn the wake of INLD’s proposed march security arrangements have been beefed by both Haryana and Punjab police at the border villages of the two States in a bid to keep law and order situation under check. Barricades have been erected at Shambhu barrier on NH1 on Punjab and Haryana border and to prevent individuals from assembling in the area, section 144 has been implemented.While Punjab has deployed 10 companies of paramilitary forces and around 5,000 policemen in villages adjoining Haryana border. Haryana on other hand has deployed five companies of paramilitary forces, besides heavy deployment of police.Even the Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the Centre to maintain surveillance in view of the proposed march by INLD workers.Punjab and Haryana are set for a face-off on the issue of sharing water from the SYL canal after political parties from both the States have taken a stiff stance on water sharing.While Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has been reiterating that Punjab does not have extra water to spare for any other State and not a single drop can be allowed to flow through SYL, the Punjab Congress president Capt. Amarinder Singh had demanded preventive arrest of INLD leader Abhay Chautala and alleged that it was evident that the Haryana government was not serious about nipping the situation that could arise out the proposed march.PTI adds:The Haryana Congress on Wednesday hit out at the INLD, accusing it of doing politics over the water-sharing issue.Speaking to scribes here, State Congress chief Ashok Tanwar dubbed the INLD’s announcement as “a political stunt” and said the party had earlier failed to support various accords which were in Haryana’s favour.Fight for survival“What INLD is doing is just a political stunt. The party is on its last legs and fighting for its survival. Now, suddenly it has dawned upon them that they have to safeguard Haryana’s interests on water issue,” said Mr. Tanwar. “INLD opposed Rajiv-Longowal and other accords which were in Haryana’s favour. Everyone knows that the Chautalas and the ruling Badal family in Punjab share close family ties. Both the Akalis and the INLD have been shadow-boxing on the water issue to fool the people,” he said.The State Congress chief alleged the INLD of using the SYL issue “like a political football for its vested interests”.“In Haryana, everyone knows they are playing second fiddle to the BJP and now no one is going to believe in the stunts they are trying to indulge in,” Mr Tanwar said.
A gunbattle broke out this afternoon between militants and security forces in Shopian district of Kashmir, police said. The exchange of fire is going on between the two sides, a police spokesman said. He said further details of the incident are awaited.
The Ahmednagar Municipal Corporation on Monday relieved Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and the AMC’s deputy mayor Shripad Chhindam from his post for his alleged derogatory remarks against Chhatrapati Shivaji just before the ‘Shiv Jayanti’ celebrations recently.In a unanimous resolution passed by all parties within the AMC, the civic body has further demanded that a case of sedition under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) be lodged against Mr. Chhindam, who is now in judicial custody. He was suspended from the party soon after his controversial remarks came to light on February 16. On mondya he was officially stripped of his corporator’s post through the resolution passed at a special AMC session.An audio clip of a conversation between Mr. Chhindam and a PWD contractor went viral on social media three days before Shiv Jayanti celebrations on February 19.In the clip, the BJP corporator is heard talking abusively about Chhatrapati Shivaji and his birth celebrations which werer ostensibly hampering the completion of works in his ward.Mr. Chhindam’s remarks prompted a storm of protest in Ahmednagar and resulted in acts of vandalism by activists of the pro-Maratha Sambhaji Brigade, and Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). A case was lodged against Mr. Chhindam on the evening of February 16.
At an undisclosed location in Purnia district of North-East Bihar, 350 km from capital Patna, Kumar Aman Ashish, 21, and Prerna Kumari, 20, are hiding. They are a couple in love, who are on the run. Prerna’s family is hunting them for daring to love, elope and marry; her father has registered a case of kidnapping against the young groom. They change their location every three to four days for “fear of reprisal.”There is a twist to the love tale too. This is not an inter-religious or inter-caste marriage. Neither has Ashish kidnapped Prerna. Both, Ashish and Prerna belong to the forward Rajput caste. And both are adults. The hitch? Prerna’s parents wanted their daughter to marry a boy of their choice.Ashish joins the long list of men against whom a case of abduction has been made out under the IPC.40% casesThe website of the Bihar Police Department, biharpolice.bih.nic.in, claims that more than 40% cases of kidnapping in Bihar last year (until November), were for “marriages” such as those of Ashish and Prerna’s where couples eloped.In Khurhan village under Alamnagar police station of Madhepura district, Ashish and Prerna were neighbours, growing up together and falling in love in their teens. That’s when trouble started for the couple. Prerna’s parents were opposed to the relationship and when Prerna was caught talking to Ashish on her mobile phone, her mother confiscated it. She was also beaten up. When her parents fixed her marriage to a boy of their choice, Prerna and Ashish decided to elope. Leaving home was the only option left for the couple, who fled on January 5 midnight. They drove on a motorbike for six hours to cross the neighbouring Nepal border through Jogbani in Araria district. On the run, they were stopped by patrolling policemen, questioned and let off. They entered Nepal at the break of dawn and checked into a local hotel at Biratnagar, stayed there for four days and reached Patna to solemnise their marriage secretly in a local Arya Samaj temple in Mithapur locality on January 15. They intimated the Chief Minister, State police chief, SPs of respective districts and the local police station officer-in-charge about their marriage with all relevant documents as proof of their age as consenting adults. They also notified their marriage through an advocate in Patna.Meanwhile, Prerna’s father Kundan Kumar Singh lodged an FIR (no: 5/2018) on January 17, against Ashish, his parents, younger brother, and a cousin sister, at the Alamnagar police station, accusing them of abducting his daughter.The Bihar police records show that 222 cases of “kidnapping for marriage and kidnapping for elopement” were registered in Purnia district while, 136 such cases were lodged in neighbouring Madhepura district till November 2017.“When we got to know that they had married we approached the girl’s family to accept their marriage but we were threatened with death,” says Amir Kumar Singh, father of Ashish. Mr. Singh himself had a love-marriage 23-years back.“But we received threatening calls… death sentences and, the police too became hostile,” he adds.At the remote village home of Prerna, her father Kundan Kumar Singh, concedes, “It is all a frivolous charge… what can we do when she is already married. She has brought dishonour to the family by running away.”In hiding, Prerna asks, “Did I do something wrong in marrying the boy I love?” Ashish wonders whether their marriage amounts to a crime. “If it is not, why has the police lodged a case not only against us but three other members of our family?”, he asks.A Supreme Court Bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had observed on February 5, 2018, “When two people get into wedlock, no one should interfere. Neither parents, society, panchayat…no one at all.” The court also ruled that two adults are free to marry and “no third party” has a right to harass or cause harm.
It looked like a normal goat carcass, and a group of vultures in Assam’s Sivasagar district settled down to devour it quickly. But at the end of the meal, 32 of them lay dead on Saturday. The incident has dealt a blow to India’s conservation programme for these highly endangered birds.Seven vultures survived, of which four were released on Sunday after treatment. The goat carcass had been poisoned as revenge for the dogs that killed it, but vultures became the unintended casualty.The mass poisoning is one of the worst such incidents in recent years, according to the Vulture Breeding Conservation Centre near Guwahati.Among the survivors, three each were Himalayan griffon (Gyps himalayensis) and slender-billed (Gyps tenuirostris), and one was an Oriental white-backed (Gyps bengalensis) vulture. Of the 32 that died, 29 were Himalayan griffons.There have been multiple incidents of mass poisoning. One was reported from western Assam’s Goalpara district in March 2011. At least 20 vultures had died then, after consuming the poisoned carcass of a dog.“The death of the vultures has been a major loss, but the small relief is that seven survived. We are trying to identify the man who is believed to have poisoned the goat’s carcass,” said Bidya Bordoloi, DFO of Sivasagar Division.Flushed outConservationist Simanta Medhi said doctors of the Bombay Natural History Society that runs the vulture breeding centre in collaboration with the Assam Forest Department, flushed out the poison from the system of the vultures, and gave them medication.“Only seven could make it, and four of these have been released. The remaining three need some more treatment,” he said.The vulture breeding centre in Assam hosts 104 birds, but the ones that died are not among those cared for by it.Vultures have fallen victim in the past due to carcasses that are either infected or poisoned. Last year, 20 birds died in March after eating cattle remains, in Lakhimpur district. Of the 50 that were found alive, 45 were released after treatment. No one was proceeded against in that case since it was not seen as a deliberate act.On the declineResearch data cited by the BNHS last year show that populations of white-backed vultures appeared to have stabilised, but that of long-billed vultures was on the decline.A steady reduction in the numbers of vultures in India was linked to the use of veterinary medicines such as diclofenac, leading to a ban on its use in animals.BNHS scientists have pointed out that several other medications are also toxic to the birds, and yet, these have not been restricted by the government.Without action on both veterinary medications and incidents of revenge killing of wildlife in villages, the bird population is at serious risk, they contend.