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Photo by Inês Pimentel on Unsplash

We see businesses as part of the solution, and not part of the problem,” Markus tells me. The marketing expert has been working at the Berlin-based startup Einhorn — meaning unicorn — for more than five years. This is why the company allows its employees to work whenever they want and take as many days off as they want — yet nobody takes advantage of an infinite vacation. In fact, most people don’t take more days off than the average employee in any other company.

Sustainability as a core value

How is it possible that in the middle of Berlin’s dynamic startup ecosystem, a company managed to succeed without investors and with a hierarchy-free work model? …


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Photo by Emilio Garcia on Unsplash

Dear readers of Work Today,

I’ve observed something: For many, the effect of the holidays has already disappeared only two weeks into the year. Work routines have this power to take away the feelings of rest and calm.

It might be the rat race or a personal ambition that can exhaust us, yet many are trying to build a better work-life. This week’s contributions and picks are reflecting those attempts.

Considering that I only started this publication a few weeks ago, I’m incredibly thrilled that there seems to be an interest in the ideas and contributions on Work Today.


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Photo by Joseph Frank on Unsplash

Making money online is the dream of many people — or a solution to a financial crisis. More and more people are turning to online platforms with micro jobs and crowd work booming. This form of freelancing gained popularity in 2020, especially for people who have lost their jobs and could not rely on social security in the wake of the COVID outbreak. Platforms like Fiverr, Etsy, or Upwork prove that freelancing and mini gigs are high in demand.

Platform work: short-term solution or permanent employment

Platform work is becoming increasingly popular around the world. The German economist Dr. Holger Schmidt’s Platform Fund shows how much attention work platforms receive: In contrast to many economists who focus on the stock market, Schmidt looks at platform-based companies separately, revealing trends that get lost in discussions about stock prices and IPOs. …


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Photo by Doran Erickson on Unsplash

Dear readers of Work Today,

I hope you all have jumped into the new year with optimism, hope and dreams for the future.

Although it’s only a new date on the calendar, I believe in the power of the collective reminder that even the worst periods pass and there is always a new day coming. After all, this is what New Year’s Eve is — a moment most people reflect on what they’ve learned and where they want to go in the future.

In this period, people change jobs or question if their careers have been going the way they want. Others might question why they work so damn much and if they have found what they really want to do. Work is one of the defining topics — especially after a year of crises, uncertainty and recession. …


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Photo by whoislimos on Unsplash

Depression affects over 260 million people worldwide (WHO 2020). In countries like the USA or Great Britain, roughly a fifth of the population has experienced a form of depression and the majority has received antidepressants to treat the symptoms. The disease has been on the rise: Between 2007 and 2017, the number of diagnosed depressed people has doubled in Great Britain.

While the growing understanding of the issue might contribute to a larger amount of people feeling comfortable with talking about the battle with depression, there is something eerie about the trend: Many people remain depressed and become long-term patients consuming antidepressants. …


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Photo by Chase Clark on Unsplash

We’re all creatures of habit. This is fairly true when it comes to the way we work or interact with others. Most people learn a set of rules and behaviors and stick to them. Once a habit is shaped by experience, it is incredibly energy-consuming to change your ways. However, changing your habits might be necessary — especially if you engage in negative patterns as procrastination or lacking organization. It requires discipline, conviction, and strategy to change for the better.

Why we stick to our old ways

As humans, we are embedded in an environment of semi-automated behaviors and beliefs. We know that a handshake is considered a proper greeting. We know that the knife belongs to the right hand and the fork to the left hand when you cut a steak on your plate. …


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Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

Massive open online courses” (MOOCs) were a remedy for millions of people in 2020 who lost their jobs in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Losing a job is an opportunity: You suddenly have a lot of time on your hands to reflect on what you want to achieve and sketch a possible path to achieve new goals.

Gaining extra qualifications seems to be a reasonable option to boost your career, therefore online courses have become widely popular. There are unlimited options — you can do micro degrees on edX, learn how to improve your project management skills on Udemy, update your knowledge on design thinking on LinkedIn or train yourself to code AI models on Coursera. …


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Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Imagine you find a job opening for your dream job. You read the profile of the company and it excites you. You even fulfill the requirements. Therefore, you decide to apply. If you’re lucky, you pass the employment algorithm and CV check and after some waiting, the HR department invites you to a job interview. To succeed in a job interview, you must be prepared and think about a lot of things.

In the past five years, I’ve been on both sides of the table — I’ve been through painfully uncomfortable job interviews and I’ve interviewed applicants myself. From these experiences, I’ve learned that some questions and behaviors repeat in almost every interview — and that you can prepare yourself to increase your chances to make a good impression. …


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Photo by Maxim Hopman on Unsplash

What do most successful people have in common? Along their paths to success, they had helpers who changed the course of their lives. Countless invisible individuals paved the way by inspiring, supporting, and teaching the ones who later became to be known. Sometimes, it only requires a small act of kindness, which can have a massive impact on future scientists, scholars, entrepreneurs, and artists.

How a neighbor paved the way for vaccine inventor Uğur Şahin

Uğur Şahin and his wife Özlem Türeci became famous for being the inventors of the corona vaccine distributed by Pfizer. Their company BioNTech provided the crucial research that made the breakthrough possible.

Both Türeci and Şahin are children of Turkish immigrants to Germany. Şahin was born in Turkey. In the 60s and 70s, German society was welcoming guest workers — so-called Gastarbeiter — and invited millions of people from across Europe to help with the economic recovery in the post-war era. …


Even if writing doesn’t make you a lot of money, it’s still worth it

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Photo by Campaign Creators on Unsplash

Writing is not only for writers. It’s a powerful vehicle you can use to build a personal brand as an expert. Even if writing doesn’t make you a lot of money — it’s a reliable way to attract paid gigs as a consultant or speaker. I’ve been writing for more than a year and even though it has made little direct income, great opportunities emerged from it.

Don’t go for the masses — go for your niche

On platforms like Medium, you can make a lot of money if you write about popular topics surrounding wisdom, self-improvement, and professional and personal advice. …

About

Alice Greschkow

Book lover, business & economics enthusiast observing work, life and power. LinkedIn Top Voice 2020

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