SEO HERO: LET’S HERO UP FOR SYRIA

Manila, Philippines: Technology has made the world smaller and brought people closer. We monitor elections in a country from miles away, witness Facebook’s live video from space, and watch the live streaming of the Super Bowl’s halftime show where they happen, when they happen. But while the internet is a good platform for entertainment and be virtually part of world events, it also teaches us a sense of responsibility.

 

The media closely monitors the war in Syria, which started with a peaceful uprising in 2011. The United Nations reported that at least 250,000 people have been killed in the past five years, and displaced more than 4.8 million civilians. But the virtual world only started to really take note when a photo of a little boy from Aleppo, bloodied and shocked, went viral. Didn’t that image haunt you or made you ask “what can I do,” or “how can I help?”

 

A growing number of SEO professionals have taken the answer to that question a notch higher, and took on the challenge to be SEO Heroes. WIX, a cloud-based web development platform, started an SEO Hero challenge for digital marketers and innovators. Everyone was invited to create a website optimized to the keyword, SEO Hero. If their website ranks highest for that search term in four months’ time, WIX will give the winning website $50,000.

 

The SEO Hero Challenge

Given the range of influence of SEO professionals in promoting businesses and making them thrive, they are also the best group of individuals to rally behind a cause such as drumming up support and assistance to the people of Syria. The SEO Hero challenge provides the perfect platform for SEO natives to do their part and make a difference. The Propelrr team is channeling this raw influence to spearhead a movement to help Syria’s children.

 

The WIX contest is open to all SEO professionals around the world. They are to create a website in English on any platform (not just wix.com) about SEO professionals and experts that can be considered heroes. Every day, a moderator will search Google for the term “SEO Hero.” The site to rank highest on average over the period of March 13 to 15, 2017 at 12:00PM ET (noon) and 20:00PM ET will be declared winner within two weeks of the challenge end date.

 

Google’s guidelines for SEO will be followed and all participants are expected to comply with the rules of the competition. Eran Hurvitz, CEO of MRKT360 INC, was tasked to ensure that everyone does. Entries must also satisfy the following requirements:

 

(1) Domain must be purchased on or after November 16, 2016. Note that the submission of entries was completed between November 16 and December 16, 2016.

 

(2) An account with Google Analytics and Google search console by February 16, 2017 to be connected to participant’s SEO Hero website.

 

Why join seohero.support?

Propelrr, a digital marketing company from the Philippines, initiated to gather SEO professionals and show the people of Syria that the world cares by joining the Wix SEO Hero contest. They created seohero.support and gathered digital influencers and SEO professionals based locally and abroad. The supporters were interviewed and asked about how the online community can impact society. In “Hero Talk,” supporters are encouraged to talk about their concept of being a “hero” and how they think the professional practice can help make a difference.

 

To hero up for Syria, just sign up with your name and email and share how SEO professionals can band together for a good cause. The simple gesture of signing up could mean a whole world of difference for Syria.

 

SEO professionals are also encouraged to share the website on their own sites and social media pages. There’s also a badge you can share to show your support.

 

Should the website win, the full amount will be donated to Karam Foundation, a group committed to provide much-needed aid to Syrian children.

 

The work of Karam

Karam Foundation is a non-profit organization that is on a mission to rebuild Syria and provide a better future for its citizens and children. Apart from distributing aid, the foundation also developed innovative education programs for the Syrian youth refugees and continues to fund sustainable development projects for Syrian families.

 

Karam means generosity in Arabic. And true to their name, the foundation, which was founded in 2007 in Chicago, has been helping communities in need, starting with a food drive on the south side of Chicago in its early years. Today, they also help communities across the western part of Asia, including Syria.

 

Among their programs is to encourage families to sponsor a Syrian refugee. There are around one million Syrian refugee children today who need not just aid but long-term support such as education and other future-building tools. Karam itself is sponsoring over 200 refugee children to go to school. This can be done by donating $50 a month.

 

Karam also distributes emergency aid to the communities of Aleppo, a rebel stronghold. The foundation also believes in providing “smart aid” or programs that are sustainable and respond to the needs of the population. They are also building a Karam House, which is expected to be finished this 2017. It is a space of healing for survivors traumatized by violence and displacement.

 

The road to healing and rebuilding of Syria is long. But by being SEO Heroes, you can make things a little better by letting civilians and refugees know that the world cares.

 

About SEOHERO.SUPPORT

 

SEOHERO.SUPPORT is cause-driven call initiative seeking the support of all Digital and SEO professionals globally to win the WIX SEO Contest aimed to donate 100% all the $50,000 winning pot to the war-stricken children of Syria.

 

Sources:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-35806229

http://www.wix.com/wix-lp/seo-heroes/faqs

https://www.karamfoundation.org

5 Charts That Sum Up What It’s Like To Achieve Career Success

How do you define success? Sounds like something you’ll hear at a beauty pageant, right? You can quote the greatest men in history or the most iconic pop stars. Or you can make your own and find the words happiness, contentment, riches, influence to fit perfectly.

But how do you write it down on paper? Once you think you have achieved career success, you can’t simply reduce it to a nice quote. The fact is you must have something to show for it. You can’t expect people to just take your word for it. There are important figures to help you gauge success, or failure. You can always argue how happiness is the key to career success or how a sense of fulfillment defines success, but metrics are not going to hurt either.

These are the metrics that help you target and manage your goals better. These are the metrics that keep you realistic. These metrics will show you just how far you’ve come, just in case you needed to be reminded.

Show me the money

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Photo courtesy of Meditations via Pixabay

Let’s start with that elephant in the room: money. It is a difficult topic, really. People are never comfortable to talk about it. But isn’t it a top concern when applying for a job, getting considered for a promotion or leaving a job? They say money can’t buy happiness, and it is true, but so does being broke.

How much are you getting paid for doing what you do? Do you think it is worth your time, talent, and the work you put into it? Entry-level employees are not paid as much as managers because they are not valued the same way. Experience, expertise, and leadership skills are factored in. If the number of zeroes in your paycheck is nothing, then why would you even strive to go up the career ladder?

The salary you take home every month is an indication of how far you’ve come and how far you can still go. It is a motivation, a fact about career success that shows employees they are appreciated and valued.

People under your watch

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Photo courtesy of StartupStockPhotos via Pixabay

Is it five, 10, 15 or more? How many people do you manage? They say true leaders are those that have helped groom future leaders. It is when he is out of the office but everything runs smoothly because he trained people well. If you have been trusted to supervise people, you can bet you are doing a great job.

In the call center industry, there are agents and there are team leaders and supervisors. Can you tell who’s had more success in their field so far? That’s easy, right? When employees are put in a position where they are assigned a team, it shows how the company trusts them and their skills. And when the company you work for think you can be trusted, you have done something very right in your career.

Performance benchmarks

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Photo courtesy of geralt via Pixabay

Depending on the work you do, there are benchmarks that show if you have made considerable progress in your chosen field. It could be sales volume, number of accounts, bids won, cases won, number of hires, number of customers served, etc. If you are a call center agent, it matters how many accounts you have handled, which can gauge call center career success. If you are a contractor, the number of bids won should matter. If you are a sales agent, your performance benchmarks are commission and sales volume.

It definitely helps to have these performance benchmarks in mind. They give you a clear picture of how well you are doing in your job and how you can improve. They also make it easier for you and your superiors to set targets. For realtors, for example, if you’ve made a total of $200,000 worth of commissions last year, you can set $300,000 as your next goal. It is realistic and all the while keeping you focused and motivated.

Rank against peers

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Photo courtesy of pmbbun via Pixabay

This is not about insecurity. This is not to say that you would have to be on constant ultracompetitive mode. At the end of the day, you are racing against yourself not with the person sitting next to you. But how do you know you are moving towards the finish line fast enough? Your peers and colleagues can help you with that.

Measure your success vis-à-vis the workforce average. If the commissions you made in the past month is 20% higher than the average, you can give yourself a pat on the back. But if you are falling below the average, you have to work harder. That’s how it is with measuring performance indicators against peers. Your rank among peers reminds you of that cliché that if others can do it, so can you.

What evaluation numbers say

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Photo courtesy of carloscuellito87 via Pixabay

Sometimes, we need other people to convince us that we are indeed doing a great job and that we are well on our way to achieve career success. Most companies conduct regular evaluations as a basis for retention or promotion. Employees are graded on their performance and skills, whether they are doing an excellent job or need improvement.

Employees should always aim to have better evaluation scores. This is their superiors’ point of view and whether you like your bosses or not, what they think about your work matters.

There are as many recommendations on how to achieve career success as there are definitions about success. Look beyond numbers when it comes to your personal and professional growth. Sense of fulfillment, the relationships you build, the lives you touch, and how happy you are at what you do are surely very important. But do not underestimate quantifying metrics, too. Numbers are unbiased and factual. They tell you as it is. They give you clear goals and targets so that you can be even more successful.

The Science of Common Sense or is there even?

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If there’s a book casing “The Common Sense of Science,” why can’t anyone discuss the other and beyond order? Where is common sense rooted? What is the science behind common sense?

As anyone is remotely interested with what science knows by now, human mind remains inconceivable. And to make things more convoluted, the famed social historian and critic once said, “the greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance […] it is the illusion of knowledge.”

Travelling back to when knowledge allegedly begun, in the ancient world, survival requires quick decision and is said to be normally crafted from either information stored in the brain (heuristic) or resisting contrary evidence known as confirmation bias. Discerning the shape of the Earth is one of the clear examples of how common sense affects understanding. Most primitive cultures see a flat earth. While other revolutionary ideas see a round earth.  Others see universe as geocentric while Copernicus proposed heliocentricity. Newtonian mechanics are counterintuitive, others believe Aristotelian motion.

Darwinian evolution theory also battles the idea of common sense and argued that biological world is intuitively discontinuous, time is intuitively local and mechanisms are intuitively deterministic. Darwin sees common sense as discontinuity in nature. Given the situation, connection between plants and animals became clear only in the mid 19th century after the discovery of cells, while way back in the pre-discovery era, plants and animals were seen as living organism and live food. Common sense provide us with limited concepts of no time and no concept of how physical world changes at timescales longer than human life.

How does it all relate to human common sense? Is common sense the very root of human intelligence? Is common sense the greatest human knowledge only in less sophisticated form? Does science undercut the idea of common sense?

Common sense, as how it is defined in basic dictionaries, is the ability to perceive, understand and judge things shared by nearly all and can be reasonably expect with almost all human beings without any need for debate. The idea and the science behind common sense are issues for philosophers and cognitive scientist alike. Philosophers debate whether or not variables of common sense really exist.

The beginning of science, according to Bronowski, instigated with the notion of order and the notion of cause.

“It is an experimental activity of trial and error. We must from the outset underline its empirical nature, because there is no test for what is like and what is unlike except an empirical one: that the arrangement of things in these groups chimes and fits with the kind of world, the kind of life which we act out.”

Newton also credited the notion of cause in relation to human cognitive development.

“Our conception of cause and effect is this: that given a definite configuration of wholly material things, there will always follow upon it the same observable event… As the sun sets, radio reception improves. As we press the switch the light goes on. As the child grows, it becomes able to speak. And if the expected does not happen, if reception does not improve, or the lamp does not light up, or the child persists in gurgling, then we are confident that the configuration from which we started was not the same… The present influences the future and, more, it determines it.”

Famous philosopher, George E. Moore further argued that one could prove that there could be worlds outside the mind as we all know that we have hands and grating that idea, the world follows. The existence of hands was at issues and that ordinary objects are something human need to understand.

Common sense is counter-intuitive or is it? Are we pattern-seeking primates?

In a sociological explanation of common sense, the thought structure of common sense follows no formation, is explicitly subjective and is subject to all manner of cognitive biases. Scientific pioneer Marvin Minsky, in his book, The Emotion Machine: Commonsense Thinking, Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Human Mind, argues persuasively that emotions, commonsense and full knowledge are not distinct things, rather different ways of thinking. Misky explained why our thought takes form of carefully formed and reasoned analysis and at other times turns simple and commonsense thinking. If human brain can be understood as fragmented part of human development than we can understood thinking as a step-by-step process that it is. New research shows common sense as a form of emotional or intrapersonal intelligence. Others treat it as synonymous to native intelligence.

But still these don’t validate any scientific beliefs. We have no ancient brain at hand to dissect it.

Victor Hugo, a famous French writer, put it thus:

“Common sense is in spite of, not the result of, education.”

On the other hand, Scott Sehon in his recent book, Teleological Realism, explained that the science of common sense is teleological and its causal explanation can be explained through the domain of physical science.  The brain, physiologically a mass of nervous tissue, delicate and sensitive, is divided into two main parts: the cerebrum, the larger and upper, the cerebellum, and the smaller, situated below and behind. The cerebrum consists of an outer zone, the cortex, or gray matter, wherein lays the nerve cells forming the various centers, and an inner portion, or white substance, which consists of bundles of nerve-fibers leading from the cortical cells and distributed over the entire body. The outer surface is laid in folds or convolutions. The brain is the seat of intelligence, the organ of the conscious mind. It must act before we can take note of what is passing on. Sehon suggests to replace causalism with teleological realism, the view that common sense can be explain by citing purpose of action.

Many scientists have made great strides in reducing information about organizational complexity of human brain from the intact organ to its constituent neurons, the proteins and the genes. Information processing, emotional control, computation and neural dynamics have hovered. Social, cultural and what we so-called “common sense” remained to occupy the highest landings of cognitive hierarchy yet remained vulnerable.

Common sense can contradict deeply held laws of nature and prejudices. It may not be related to what we believe is true. Common sense doesn’t determine what’s true.

Left unanswered was the question of how is “common sense” any different when it comes to false knowledge and ethical skepticism or even emotional intelligence. More to the point how cognitive science arrived at this so called “common sense” without being able to explain its science.

Why 2015 is the Best Year for your Career

The start of the year is the perfect time to pursue what you want in a job and jumpstart an amazing career. Whether you feel unsatisfied with your current job or believe that you should be trying out other career paths, the holiday season should have given you downtime to mull things over.

Now that the new year has kicked in, most people are optimistic about finding jobs. In a poll by the global career experts, Right Management, it was found that 4 out of 5 employees plan to pursue new career opportunities in 2015. Kristy Stromberg, senior vice president of marketing for job search engine SimplyHired, explains, “The holidays are over and people are thinking about how they can improve their lives. We all spend so much time at work, finding a new job is a great way to make a positive change.

Photo from LittleRedStamp of Etsy.com via Pinterest

Photo from LittleRedStamp of Etsy.com via Pinterest