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10 Start-Up Companies Worth Investing In

10 Start-Up Companies Worth Investing In

It seems like everyone from high school kids to retirees is starting a company in their spare time. Finding the hottest startup is akin to finding a needle in a haystack, so we’ve assembled a list of 10 start-up companies that you may not have heard about.

Combining innovation and a genuine interest in making the world a better place, these 10 brands are on the verge of making a major breakthrough, and will soon become household names.

1. UpDog: Video Review App

UpDog is the first app where you don’t just see the food in the review, but you see the venue, people and atmosphere too. It’s rumored that this reinvention of the review app is going to take a huge chunk out of the market share that Yelp currently occupies, and is predicted to be positioned for an early acquisition.

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2. Hopper: Saves You Money on Travel

Hopper is a way to consolidate those travel blogs and travel-themed Pinterest boards. There’s no need to sift through travel sites to find the best deal with Hopper in your browser, as this site provides data-driven research to help travelers make better decisions about where to go, when to fly and when to buy.

Founded in 2007 and backed by BrightsparkAtlas Venture and OMERS Ventures, Hopper is sure to gain the market share of the other travel websites.

3. GenoVive: Healthy Eating Designed for You

GenoVive works as both a personal nutritionist and a fitness trainer. Using a person’s DNA, health specialists create a personalized meal plan and exercise regimen to help customers begin a healthier lifestyle and reach their goal weight.

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4. ThinkUp: Social Media Information App

ThinkUp gathers your social media activity and relays important information to you in a fun and conversational way. It allows for a greater knowledge of your web presence, making it an asset for online personalities and businesses utilizing social media.

5. Plated: Food Delivery Program

Plated delivers everything you need to make a healthy gourmet meal right to your front door, including the recipe and pre-portioned fresh ingredients. The company advocates good eating with the convenience of not having to go to the grocery store.

Plated currently delivers to 80% of the continental United States and continues to expand.

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6. Packback Books: eBooks for Rent

Packback Books gives college students the opportunity to rent eBooks on an as-needed basis, for no more than $5 a day. This eliminates the issue of purchasing textbooks that cost hundreds of dollars and then rarely using them in class, as well as the need for rental services such as Chegg.

Packback Books is currently in its beta stage.

7. Samba: Video Reaction App

Samba is an app that records the recipient’s reaction to a sent video, and then returns the reaction to the sender. This combines the appeal of communication via digital outlets and face-to-face communication, and is a faster alternative to FaceTime or Skype.

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It is set to go live in the Apple Store soon.

8. Groundwork: Workshop Interview Program

Groundwork is reinventing the job interview process by providing workshop environments for job seekers and companies seeking employees. This grants all parties involved the opportunity to work together and showcase their strengths in a working environment.

9. Pillpack: Medication Simplified

PillPack has streamlined and simplified the modern pharmacy experience. PillPack boasts the variety of a full-service pharmacy and the convenience of a doorstep delivery service. Furthermore, handles refills and daily dosages, as medication is pre-sorted into daily packs. This is a business that will revolutionize the drug industry and change the lives of those who are always on-the-go and those who just can’t remember to take their afternoon pill.

10. Jazinga: Simplifying Small Business Communications

Jazinga is the startup designed for startups. This technology-based startup is focused on simplifying and slimming down small business communications. Jazinga has the power to transform how businesses operate and communicate.

Featured photo credit: PicJumbo via picjumbo.com

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Joel Goldstein

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Last Updated on July 16, 2019

7 Powerful Habits To Win In Office Politics

7 Powerful Habits To Win In Office Politics

Office politics – a taboo word for some people. It’s a pervasive thing at the workplace.

In its simplest form, workplace politics is simply about the differences between people at work; differences in opinions, conflicts of interests are often manifested as office politics. It all goes down to human communications and relationships.

There is no need to be afraid of office politics. Top performers are those who have mastered the art of winning in office politics. Below are 7 good habits to help you win at the workplace:

1. Be Aware You Have a Choice

The most common reactions to politics at work are either fight or flight. It’s normal human reaction for survival in the wild, back in the prehistoric days when we were still hunter-gatherers.

Sure, the office is a modern jungle, but it takes more than just instinctive reactions to win in office politics. Instinctive fight reactions will only cause more resistance to whatever you are trying to achieve; while instinctive flight reactions only label you as a pushover that people can easily take for granted. Neither options are appealing for healthy career growth.

Winning requires you to consciously choose your reactions to the situation. Recognize that no matter how bad the circumstances, you have a choice in choosing how you feel and react. So how do you choose? This bring us to the next point…

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2. Know What You Are Trying to Achieve

When conflicts happen, it’s very easy to be sucked into tunnel-vision and focus on immediate differences. That’s a self-defeating approach. Chances are, you’ll only invite more resistance by focusing on differences in people’s positions or opinions.

The way to mitigate this without looking like you’re fighting to emerge as a winner in this conflict is to focus on the business objectives. In the light of what’s best for the business, discuss the pros and cons of each option. Eventually, everyone wants the business to be successful; if the business don’t win, then nobody in the organization wins.

It’s much easier for one to eat the humble pie and back off when they realize the chosen approach is best for the business.

By learning to steer the discussion in this direction, you will learn to disengage from petty differences and position yourself as someone who is interested in getting things done. Your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is mature, strategic and can be entrusted with bigger responsibilities.

3. Focus on Your Circle of Influence

At work, there are often issues which we have very little control over. It’s not uncommon to find corporate policies, client demands or boss mandates which affects your personal interests.

Gossiping and complaining are common responses to these events that we cannot control. But think about it, other than that short term emotional outlet, what tangible results do gossiping really accomplish? In most instances, none.

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Instead of feeling victimized and angry about the situation, focus on the things that you can do to influence the situation — your circle of influence. This is a very empowering technique to overcome the feeling of helplessness. It removes the victimized feeling and also allows others to see you as someone who knows how to operate within given constraints.

You may not be able to change or decide on the eventual outcome but, you can walk away knowing that you have done the best within the given circumstances.

Constraints are all around in the workplace; with this approach, your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is understanding and positive.

4. Don’t Take Sides

In office politics, it is possible to find yourself stuck in between two power figures who are at odds with each other. You find yourself being thrown around while they try to outwit each other and defend their own position; all at the expense of you getting the job done. You can’t get them to agree on a common decision for a project, and neither of them want to take ownership of issues; they’re too afraid they’ll get stabbed in the back for any mishaps.

In cases like this, focus on the business objectives and don’t take side with either of them – even if you like one better than the other. Place them on a common communication platform and ensure open communications among all parties, so that no one can claim “I didn’t say that”.

By not taking sides, you’ll help to direct conflict resolution in an objective manner. You’ll also build trust with both parties. That’ll help to keep the engagements constructive and focus on business objectives.

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5. Don’t Get Personal

In office politics, you’ll get angry with people. It happens. There will be times when you feel the urge to give that person a piece of your mind and teach him a lesson. Don’t.

People tend to remember moments when they were humiliated or insulted. Even if you win this argument and get to feel really good about it for now, you’ll pay the price later when you need help from this person. What goes around comes around, especially at the workplace.

To win in the office, you’ll want to build a network of allies which you can tap into. The last thing you want during a crisis or an opportunity is to have someone screw you up because they harbor ill-intentions towards you – all because you’d enjoyed a brief moment of emotional outburst at their expense.

Another reason to hold back your temper is your career advancement. Increasingly, organizations are using 360 degree reviews to promote someone. Even if you are a star performer, your boss will have to fight a political uphill battle if other managers or peers see you as someone who is difficult to work with. The last thing you’ll want is to make it difficult for your boss to champion you for a promotion.

6. Seek to Understand, Before Being Understood

The reason people feel unjustified is because they felt misunderstood. Instinctively, we are more interested in getting the others to understand us than to understand them first. Top people managers and business leaders have learned to suppress this urge.

Surprisingly, seeking to understand is a very disarming technique. Once the other party feels that you understand where he/she is coming from, they will feel less defensive and be open to understand you in return. This sets the stage for open communications to arrive at a solution that both parties can accept.

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Trying to arrive at a solution without first having this understanding is very difficult – there’s little trust and too much second-guessing.

7. Think Win-Win

As mentioned upfront, political conflicts happen because of conflicting interests. Perhaps due to our schooling, we are taught that to win, someone else needs to lose. Conversely, we are afraid to let someone else win, because it implies losing for us.

In business and work, that doesn’t have to be the case.

Learn to think in terms of “how can we both win out of this situation?” This requires that you first understand the other party’s perspective and what’s in it for him.

Next, understand what’s in it for you. Strive to seek out a resolution that is acceptable and beneficial to both parties. Doing this will ensure that everyone truly commit to the agreed resolution and will not pay only lip-service to it.

People simply don’t like to lose. You may get away with win-lose tactics once or twice but very soon, you’ll find yourself without allies in the workplace.

Thinking win-win is an enduring strategy that builds allies and help you win in the long term.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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