Why Germany Is So Much Better at Training Its Workers

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Why Germany Is So Much Better at Training Its Workers
The Atlantic - Apprentices at work in Europe’s largest steel factory in Duisburg, Germany (Ina Fassbender/Reuters)

At last, unemployment is easing. But the latest low rate—hovering below 6 percent–obscures a deeper, longer-term problem: “skills mismatches” in the labor force, which will only worsen in years to come. According to the most recent figures, 9.3 million Americans are unemployed, but 4.8 million jobs stand empty because employers can’t find people to fill them. With new technology transforming work across a range of sectors, more and more businesses are struggling to find workers with the skills to man new machines and manage new processes.


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Why It’s So Hard To Detect Emotion In Emails And Texts

Why It’s So Hard To Detect Emotion In Emails And Texts
fastcodesign.com - Earlier this year, in a story on enigmatic email, the Wall Street Journal shared an awkward exchange between a consultant named Jill Campen and her boss, Marty Finkle. Campen sent a detailed email outlining a broad business strategy on a Thursday, only to get a one-word reply from Finkle the following Monday: “Noted.” Dismayed at the brevity, Campen replied again to ask Finkle if he was mad at her. It took a phone call to clear the air and establish that, far from upset, Finkle was pleased to clear the matter from his inbox so quickly and confidently.


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Predict Cultural Conflicts on Your Team

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Predict Cultural Conflicts on Your Team
Harvard Business Review - When you’re on a global team, cultural differences can be complex and can often seem contradictory. The biggest challenge comes when differences are complex in surprising ways.

Here’s a letter I received from an executive at automotive supplier Valeo, a French company with big client bases in Germany and Japan, and a growing presence in China.


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Research: We’re Too Busy to Follow the Rules

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Research: We’re Too Busy to Follow the Rules
Harvard Business Review - Long hours spent working in a demanding environment can exhaust you, sure. But according to new research, there’s another hidden cost attached to an intense day: neglecting those secondary tasks that, while not as visible or lauded by your boss, might be essential to the safety or ethics of your organization.


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Designer or journalist: Who shapes the news you read in your favorite apps?

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Designer or journalist: Who shapes the news you read in your favorite apps?
Nieman Journalism Lab - What are the ethics of platform design? One of the reasons that Facebook study on user emotions was so controversial is that it touched on the kinds of ethics we expect – or don’t expect – from platform designers. The public debate was divided, right down to the words used to describe what happened: science, experimentation, customization, manipulation, effect, significance, consent, harm, algorithm, users, audiences. All these words mean different things to people depending on their experiences, training, values, and expectations. And the simple summary of ethics as the “study of what we ought to do” is often unsatisfying because it invokes hard questions about who is the “we” who does the deciding, what “oughts” are up for debate, and who bears responsibility. Journalists and news technology designers are increasingly finding themselves in the middle of this debate about how platforms should work.


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Convincing Employees to Use New Technology

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Convincing Employees to Use New Technology
Harvard Business Review - All of our companies are digital now – or quickly becoming that way. Almost any enterprise you can think of, no matter the industry or sector, is trying (or being pressured by competitors) to use new technology to harness the vast new oceans of data being generated by smartphones, sensors, digital cameras, GPS devices, and myriad other sources of information originating from customers and markets.


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The Exact Language You Need to Say No Nicely

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The Exact Language You Need to Say No Nicely
inc.com - Here on Inc.com we’ve covered why it’s so important to and say no more often, and even how you should decide what to say no to if you want to maximize your success. But all this advice to be intentional about your priorities and trim your commitments still leaves you directionless when it comes to the part of saying no many entrepreneurs dread the most—actually turning someone down.


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Our Use Of Little Words Can, Uh, Reveal Hidden Interests

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Our Use Of Little Words Can, Uh, Reveal Hidden Interests
NPR - One Friday night, 30 men and 30 women gathered at a hotel restaurant in Washington, D.C. Their goal was love, or maybe sex, or maybe some combination of the two. They were there for speed dating.


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In Most Meetings, 3 People Are Doing 70% of the Talking

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In Most Meetings, 3 People Are Doing 70% of the Talking
99u.com - Elements designed by Ivan Colic from the Noun Project

Over at The New York Times, researcher Daniel Levitin shares why you should give your brain a much-needed reset by only checking email or social feeds during designated times:


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Are young people losing the ability to read emotions?

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Are young people losing the ability to read emotions?
kurzweilai.net - You’ve been prevented from accessing your smart phone, computer, tablet, and TV for five days. Do you (A) totally freak out and go into withdrawal or (B) deal with it and regain some of your lost social skills, like reading emotions?


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Human workers report feeling most productive when led by artificial intelligence

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Human workers report feeling most productive when led by artificial intelligence
PBS - Researchers from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab found that teams of human workers were at their happiest and most productive when their tasks were directed by robotic artificial intelligence.


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Science says you should leave work at 2 p.m. and go for a walk

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Science says you should leave work at 2 p.m. and go for a walk
Mother Jones - Charles Dickens, perhaps the greatest of the Victorian novelists, was a man of strict routine. Every day, Dickens would write from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. After that, he would put his work away and go out for a long walk. Sometimes he walked as far as 30 miles; sometimes, he walked into the night. “If I couldn’t walk fast and far, I should just explode and perish,” Dickens wrote.


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The Odd Work-Break Ratio That’s Great For Productivity

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The Odd Work-Break Ratio That’s Great For Productivity
mashable.com - Everyone has that person in the office. You know, the one who always seems to get way more done than everybody else, but who never seems stressed or frantically trying to finish an assignment. How does he or she get it done? And can you steal those secrets to improve your own productivity?


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Seven Habits of Highly Fraudulent Users

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Seven Habits of Highly Fraudulent Users
blog.siftscience.com - At Sift Science, we analyze a lot of data. We distill fraud signals in real-time from terabytes of data and more than a billion global events per month. Previously, we discovered that the U.S. has more fraud than Nigeria and solved the mystery of Doral, FL. At our “Cats N’ Hacks” Hackathon last week, I decided to put some of our fraud signals to the test. Working with our Machine Learning Engineer, Keren Gu, we discovered some interesting fraud patterns[1]:


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When Good People Share Bad Things: The Basics of Social Media Verification

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When Good People Share Bad Things: The Basics of Social Media Verification
PBS - The rapid spread of online misinformation was voted one of the top 10 trends facing the world in 2014 by members of the World Economic Forum’s Network of Global Agenda Councils. In this third installment in the PBS MediaShift series on the 2014 Trends in Newsrooms report, Julie Posetti and Craig Silverman report on social media verification trends. Read the other installments here: Part one, part two and part three.


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