Monday, August 29, 2011

A Prairie Dog Language?

Scientists have recently discovered that prairie dogs seem to have a language of their own. In their language they can tell other prairie dogs if there is a predator around, what kind of predator it is (coyote, hawk, etc), and even the color of the predator!

For 30 years, Professor Con Slobodchikoff and his colleagues have been recording the calls of the prairie dogs. They have found that prairie dogs have been confronted by so many different predators so often, that they have, over time, developed a way to accurately describe the predators. These “words” can be used to say, "tall, skinny coyote in distance, moving rapidly towards colony".

Professor Slobodchikoff and his team believe that prairie dogs can do this by slightly alternating the accents and of the call and the harmonics in the bark. This allows them to “say” a lot of information in a very short amount of time. Prof Slobodchikoff says, "Prairie dogs have the most complex natural language that has been decoded so far. They have words for different predators, they have descriptive words for describing the individual features of different predators, so it's a pretty complex language that has a lot of elements."

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Five Characteristics of a Successful Leader

Being a successful leader means that you are always concerned about others well being before your own. I have laid out five main factors of what makes a leader successful:

1. Be encouraging. Don’t put down someone’s work and make yours better. Uplift them and give positive input.

2. Listen. Listen to what others say. Let them share their views and thoughts and don’t put them down.

3. Be accepting. Don’t fall for what others say about the new guy. Again, be encouraging. Respect their beliefs or views. Don’t distance yourself from them just because they’re different from you.

4. Keep a positive attitude. I mean, who wants to be around someone who is always talking about how something is so bad or has a negative air about themselves?

5. Always do the right thing. Don’t be pulled into doing something that you know that’s wrong. It might be fun at the time, but it will just end badly.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Meeting Scott McKain!

This summer I finally had the chance to meet Mr. Scott McKain! He’s a great speaker and business man and has been very supportive. You can read more about him on his web site.

Mr. McKain says that we need to focus on what really makes a difference. Anything you do gets better when you get better; and when you work as hard on yourself as you do your business. He wrote a book called, Collapse of Distinction about standing-out and not being mediocre. You create distinction by developing clarity, creativity, communication, and a customer-experience focus. You can’t be all things to all people. You can read a review of his book here.