After five runner-up finishes at the Australian Open, world number one Andy Murray is taking a different approach to the season-opening grand slam at Melbourne Park next month.The Briton is preparing for the January 16-29 tournament by competing in the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi rather than the mixed team round robin format of the Hopman Cup in Perth which he has favoured for the last two years.Murray plays his first match on Friday and was his usual cautiously optimistic self when asked about finally ending his Melbourne drought.”I’ve played really well there in the past and it hasn’t happened for me so I’ll need to do something a little bit different this year,” Murray told Reuters on Wednesday.”I love the conditions there and I enjoy the tournament a lot, and I’ll be going in hopefully playing well and with a lot of confidence because of the way I finished 2016, so I’ll give it a good go this year.”The 29-year-old double Olympic champion will go to Melbourne with his confidence sky-high after knocking Novak Djokovic, the man who has beaten him in four Australian Open finals, off the top of the world rankings.The Scot won nine titles in 2016, including Wimbledon and the Olympic gold medal, and thrashed Djokovic in the final of the ATP Tour Finals to take top spot in the rankings from the Serb.However, the 24-match winning run that helped him land his last five tournaments of the season took its toll.advertisement”Getting to number one it took me basically the whole year, right down to the last tournament, the last match of the year to finish number one, so that was really, really hard and it took a lot out of me physically and mentally,” Murray said.”I was really, really tired, more tired than I’ve been at the end of any season that I’d finished before.”Murray has a bye into Friday’s semi-finals in the UAE and will face the winner of Thursday’s quarter-final between David Goffin of Belgium and France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Andy Murray is yet to reach his maximum potential and should only get better but the world number one has not seen the back of Novak Djokovic, according to eight-times grand slam champion Andre Agassi.Djokovic, a six-times champion at Melbourne Park, was bundled out of the second round by Uzbek wildcard Denis Istomin on Thursday, leaving top seed Murray a raging favourite to win a first Australian Open title after five trips to the final. (Also read: Give Novak Djokovic a break, Andy Murray tells Serb’s critics)Djokovic’s exit, which comes on the heels of a dip in form in the second half of last season, raised fresh doubts about the 12-times grand slam champion’s motivation after he surrendered the world number one ranking to Murray at the ATP Tour Finals.Agassi, however, felt the Serb’s struggles would pass quickly and he would be back to contesting the pointy end of grand slams sooner rather than later.”I’ve celebrated Novak’s accomplishments to the point of predicting he’s going to win everything and the truth is it’s always a surprise when he loses,” Agassi told reporters in a video conference call from Las Vegas. (Also read: Defending champion Novak Djokovic crashes out of Australian Open)”What I can speak to is Novak’s game and his abilities and there’s no reason in the world why he can’t turn it around.”In my opinion, (he is) one of the greats of all time so I give him a high chance of coming back in a hurry.”advertisementMurray expressed sympathy for Djokovic after his Melbourne exit but cannot have felt too mournful to see the back of the man who beat him in four finals at the tournament, including the last two.Murray’s rise to world number one after 10 years of hard graft has raised British hopes of a sustained run of success for the Scot and Agassi was not about to pour cold water on them.However, the 46-year-old American felt Murray’s outstanding defensive game might actually be holding him back from realising his full potential.”He’s very impressive. I’ve always talked about Andy as a person that has never really realised his maximum potential,” said Agassi.”He’s so good at certain things it almost makes him a bit indecisive. It almost makes him not bring his strengths to the table as much as he could.”If he actually minimised his defensive skills by just five percent he might actually be a better player.”My expectation is he is only going to get better. It looks like he’s strong. It looks like he’s fit. It looks like he knows how to invest in himself.”
Russian whistleblower Yulia Stepanova made a sluggish return to international indoor athletics, finishing last in an 800 metres at the Boston Indoor Grand Prix on Saturday.The former Russian national team member’s time of 2 minutes, 5.14 seconds was more than three seconds off American Charlene Lipsey’s winning performance in the opening leg of the IAAF world indoor tour.Stepanova placed seventh, 0.24 seconds out of sixth. (Doping paradox rules whistleblower Yulia Stepanova out of Rio )The race was her first against international indoor competition in two years and the 30-year-old ran as a neutral athlete since Russian track and field athletes remain banned from global races. She and her husband have been living at an undisclosed location in the United States after helping to expose massive doping problems in Russia that led to the country’s track and field team being banned.The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) cleared the former convicted drug cheat’s return to competition as a neutral athlete last year but her European Championships appearance in Amsterdam ended with a torn tendon. Her only recorded time in competition since then was at an indoor meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico, earlier this month, where she ran 800 metres in 2:10:32, more than 12 seconds off her indoor best set in 2011.
Delhi Daredevils’ wicketkeeper batsman Rishabh Pant overcame a personal tragedy to play a fantastic innings of 57 from 36 balls versus the Royal Challenegrs Bangalore in Delhi’s Indian Premier League 2017 season opener in Bengaluru which Delhi lost by 15 runs.Pant’s father – Rajendra Pant had been ill for a long time and passed away in Roorkee earlier this week and he had to rush home following the tragedy. (Also read: IPL 2017: AB de Villiers in awe of RCB teammate Kedar Yadav)Pant performed the last rites the day in Haridwar on Thursday and if reports are to be beleievd then he also suffered burn injuries on his leg while performing the last rites and was all set to miss Delhi’s IPL 2017 opener against RCB. (MATCH HIGHLIGHTS)However, like a professional cricketer, the young Delhi boy came out two days later and hammered the bowlers around to play a memorable innings overcoming his personal sorrows.The 19-year-old, who made his T20 debut versus England in the third and last T20I in Bengaluru back in February looked in sublime touch as he hit the bowlers around the park in Delhi’s chase of 158 at the Chinnaswamy. Even though wickets were falling around him, he held his own and kept playing his aggressive game before completing his fifty off just 33 balls. (Also read: IPL 2017: How ‘Big Show’ Glenn Maxwell got the better of his Australian captain)He hit three fours and four sixes in his innings of runs 57.Although he failed to take his team past the line, he show of character and grit should be lauded and will definitely earn him respect.advertisementSuch a selfless act is actually not a rare thing in Indian cricket as Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli had earlier done the same and played some memorable knocks, showing their strong will and character.Tendulkar scored an emotional 140 not out against Kenya in the World Cup back in 1999 in the backdrop of his father’s demise.On the eve of the second game against Zimbabwe, Tendulkar got the news of his father — Ramesh Tendulkar passing away. Tendulkar was on the way back home for his father’s funeral the following day. India lost to Zimbabwe next and they had to win the next few games to qualify. He flew back to England on the eve of the Kenya match and scored a brilliant hundred and India won the match by 94 runs.The current Indian captain played a heroic innings to save Delhi in a Ranji Trophy game against Karnataka back in 2006. Kohli was on 40 at close of play and his team was staring at a follow-on. He lost his father, Prem Kohi, 54, at three the morning but that didn’t stop him from coming out to bat to save his team. He played a great knock before falling on 90 just before lunch.Kohli’s great show of strength not only made him a hero but also saved the match for Delhi.Also watch:
Hear what constitutes just enough planning for your marketing campaign. Thanks to my organization Network for Good, we’ve got a great free teleconference tomorrow (which you can later access online). The great Kristen Grimm of Spitfire (who happens to be spitfire herself) will be speaking on Great Campaigns in Nine Simple Steps: How to Succeed with “Just Enough” Planning. Tuesday, March 10 at 1 p.m. ETRegister here!Key takeaways:Campaign planning in 9 easy stepsIdeas for campaign goal-setting, staffing, timelines and messagingHow to measure success along the wayQ&A session to answer your campaign questions
I’ve been saying for a while that cooperative businesses are the future, and when I got to Austin, TX, I saw that the future is already here_._I was in Austin for just a few days, but in that time I met dozens of people doing really exciting things around cooperative models.We had one of our most interesting afternoons at the Artists Screen Printing Cooperative (ASPCO).When a lot of people think “co-op,” their mind immediately goes to food co-ops or other consumer cooperatives. It’s nice to get a glimpse into a professional cooperative, where members come together to pursue a career or trade.ASPCO was launched in 2010 by a handful of screen printers who connected on Craigslist.James Tootle was a graphic designer with a screen-printing hobby that he wanted to revive, but a single press can cost about $3,700, and a professional dryer can cost $5,000. He couldn’t spend that kind of money. (That’s James and I in the photo below, by the way.)So he posted a Craigslist ad, which drew a few others willing to go in on some equipment. After a few months of planning the venture, they realized what they really wanted was to set up a co-op.“One of the advantages to a co-op is that you can learn different techniques from one another, whether it’s posters or fabric or anything else in the craft,” said James, who serves as president of the board.That first year, in 2010, ASPCO had a membership of about 15. It’s now more than double that.There are photographers looking to print their work in unique ways, web designers seeking to create something offline, and people running small businesses printing T-shirts, tote bags or posters.James estimates that about 70% of members make their living from screen-printing.That’s what I found so compelling: a handful of people have created a community resource that didn’t exist before, and it’s enabling dozens of artists and entrepreneurs to support themselves.Most importantly, the organization is self-sustaining. Members pay monthly dues, which keeps the lights on. ASPCO also offers classes for beginners.All I could think of was how this model could be replicated in other places, in any field where the initial costs are too high for one person to take on alone.Demand has been high enough that ASPCO outgrew its original space and moved, in March, to a new 1,600 sq. ft. studio. They have manual printing presses_,_ poster- and fabric-printing equipment, professional drying racks, a computer station and industrial pressure washer.“It was all DIY,” James said. “We didn’t get any startup money or anything.” He’s proud to say that the coop still operates as a nonprofit, and its six-member board is volunteer.James says they’ll probably cap membership soon, to make sure everyone can still have access to the equipment when they need it.“We’ve got a good thing going,” he said.After our inspiring afternoon at ASPCO, we went to the Black Star Co-op, a cooperatively-owned brewpub, to have a drink and talk about everything we’d seen.The food was amazing, the beer was great, and knowing that it was a worker-managed brewery owned by its 3,000 members made my day.Black Star’s motto is, “Eat. Drink. Cooperate.” Those are words we can all live by.Black Star Co-op and ASPCO are just two of the hundreds of New Mutualist organizations you’ll find on our Quiet Revolutionary map! Are there any New Mutualist organizations in your area that belond on our map? Be sure to submit your idea!
The resume is dying.Together, your portfolio and LinkedIn are taking its place. This is good news for most of us: your portfolio and profile are probably a much more accurate and full-featured description of who you are.Every single gig I have applied for in the past several years have looked at my LinkedIn profile before they hired me. (I asked.) Don’t miss out on all the gig opportunities on LinkedIn by not maximizing your profile:Key aspects of your profileYour profile photoThis is the first way you will be judged on your profile.We’ve talked about best practices for taking your own profile photo here.Your jobs and gigsAdd previous jobs and gigs, with a short description of each.And I mean short: don’t be that person that writes 10 lines for each job. I try to keep the description to 2-3 line. I also put it in normal, non-resume-speak (which some people may disagree with). So I write “I wrote copy…” without a bullet rather than “[bullet] Wrote copy…”Should you add all your gigs?If you’ve been freelancing for a while, you’ve had a lot of gigs. Should you list all your clients, or should you just write something like “Owner, Lindsay Enterprises,” with a description of your core business model?These two approaches have different benefits. I would suggest a happy marriage of the two, so it would look something like this:OwnerLindsay EnterprisesJuly 2010-Present[What your business does]. Some of the clients I’ve worked with: Barney, Donald Trump, and Blue’s Clues.Get creative about projectsWithin your business listing I talked about above, the projects associated with your business should essentially be the star items in your portfolio. Include documents, presentations, writing samples, screenshots of websites you’ve built.If you’re more of a consulting or soft services business, it might be a good idea to create a Slideshare presentation or video about your business instead.EndorsementsNot only do endorsements look good on your profile, but they’re also a great way to strengthen a connection with someone you’ve worked with on a gig.I’ve also used endorsements to creatively “remind” a previous employer that I exist. You’re of course giving them an authentic endorsement, but also remember that when you endorse them, your name appears in their inbox. That’s good for you! (Just don’t abuse it — do it once. Continually endorsing someone feels pretty false.)RecommendationsDon’t miss out on one of the best (free) marketing tools for your business: getting past clients to talk about how great you are.We’ve talked about how to reach out to past clients in an unsleezy way that makes the process painless for your client here.ConnectionsIf you’re new to LinkedIn or have fewer than 30 connections, it will be worth your time to try to grow that number before you start trying to find gigs through LinkedIn. That number is going to be one of the big things clients look at.How to increase your connections quickly**:**Ask your social media followers to connect with you on LinkedIn. An easy way to pick up 10-15 new connections and bring old Facebook friends out of the woodwork. “I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you all on Twitter, so feel free to connect with me here [LINK]. Let’s get connected!” My email address is: [email address].Use the “People you may know” tool. These are people you don’t need an introduction to connect to. Just go through the list and start connecting.Use the “Add connections” tool (it’s the icon of the person with the plus in the top right navigation) to have LinkedIn go through your contacts to find connections. This is how I went from 0 to 50 contacts in 24 hours when I first got started.Also remember that whenever you meet someone at a networking event or on a gig, always connect with them. This is the easiest way to maintain a connection (and perhaps later use this connection to get repeat business.)Who’s looking at my profile?As soon as you put up a profile, you become searchable in the giant LinkedIn database. The LinkedIn search tool is how recruiters, HR departments, and many potential clients search for people with your skills.Every day, thousands of freelancers have clients reach out to them on LinkedIn — without the freelancer lifting a finger. That’s pretty much the ideal scenario for busy freelancers, right?Larger companies also have what’s called an Applicant Tracking System that’s like a robot that does keyword and location searches on LinkedIn. This is why keywords are so important.The power of keywordsYou should sound like a human on your profile, but you should also remember that people with scan your profile (and as explained above, robots might too.)1. HR people look for keywordsThis is not the time to be very creative; “Content marketer” in your bio will get more searches than something like “I think big about your business.”Let’s say you apply to a job the good-ol’-fashioned way (a pitch or resume). Chances are the person doing the first round of cuts in an organization larger than 30 people is an HR person.The HR person has listened to other people describe the job, but may not understand the nature of your field or what experience counts as “related” or not. Chances are they are looking for keywords, which they heard from your future project manager or supervisor.2. Clients look for keywordsMost clients aren’t just looking for a generic copywriter or marketer. They’re looking for someone with specialized experience in their particular field.Be careful that you’re not being convoluted about what you did. Make it easy: describe what you do in keywords. Put a few keywords in your bio. When you describe gigs, use keywords.Reaching out directly to clientsThere’s two ways to proactively reach out to clients on LinkedIn; the job board and a direct message. We talk about how to find all the good-paying job postings here.Have someone you really want to work for? Find them on LinkedIn and try to send them a message. Send them your pitch. This is how this freelancer found multiple small projects that turned into longer-term clients.This is the kind of thing that most managers and recruiters expect. It is not seen as annoying by most of them, especially if they have a job posting on their website and you’re using this as a secondary follow-up to your application.Groups? Status updates? eh.I don’t know about you, but I just don’t have time to update my status on yet another social network.Call me lazy.Of course, updating your status on LinkedIn will get your name in front of your existing clients — which is good if you want to get repeat clients. But that’s assuming those clients hang out on LinkedIn, which I kind of doubt.As for groups, supposedly groups can be “happy hunting grounds” for recruiters. I feel like I get more bang for my buck spending marketing time on Twitter, email marketing, and direct-to-client pitches and emails, but I’d love to hear if you’ve had success with groups (comments please!)The Don’ts.Now that we’ve gone over what you should do on LinkedIn, let’s review what you shouldn’t do.Don’t try to connect with people using the generic connect message. If you really want to connect with someone (especially an old colleague), spend the time re-introducing yourself and saying why you genuinely want to connect. If you just met someone at a networking event, remind them where you met them.Never lie or exaggerate your jobs. This should be a no-brainer, but it must be said. This is public information available to all of the people that know exactly what you did at a certain job.Careful not to misspell things. Think of LI as your most important resume.Don’t use the words “creative,” “effective,” “extensive experience,” or “proven professional.” (Don’t use them on your resume, either.)Don’t recommend people you don’t really know, just so they’ll recommend you back. Trust us, there is nothing creepier than getting recommended by someone you don’t really know for a skill you know they don’t know you have.Try not to forget to update your profile for several years. Just because this can be a low-effort platform does not mean you should forget to tell potential new clients about the great new gig you have.Freelancers, do you find gigs through LinkedIn? How?
Need help dealing with a legal issue? Download the Freelancers Union app to connect with a lawyer committed to helping freelancers and who understand the freelance life.Protect your work: Build a standardized client agreement with our step-by-step freelance contract creator.If you’ve ever had trouble getting paid, give yourself more security with milestone payments.A milestone payment is simply a certain % of the fee of a project that the client pays over the course of the project rather than paying 100% at the end. One rough example of a milestone payment system would be if a client payed you 30% upfront, 30% after the first draft is submitted, and 40% at project completion.Here’s how and why they work:Milestone payments protect freelancers1. They ensure some payment if project gets dropped. If you’re working on a 4-month project and the client drops off the face of the planet at month 3, milestone payments ensure that you’ve at least got the payment from month 1 and 2.2. They guarantee that you learn that the client is a non-payer earlier in the project. If your client doesn’t pay at the first milestone a third of the way through a project, try to stop work on the project as soon as possible in order to cut your loses. Sometimes you’ll continue to work, with faith that the client will come through, but you should never deliver a final project if a milestone payment was missed.3. They help steady your cash flow so you budget more easily. Breaking out your payments smooths out the “feast or famine” cycle most freelancers experience. Makes it a lot easier to pay your rent.4. They force you to structure the project and break it into smaller pieces, and see if you’re on track for project completion. If you come to the midway milestone point and find that you’ve spent far longer working than you estimated or are nowhere near a halfway point, it’s possible that the client didn’t communicate the original scope of the project clearly. Discuss this scope creep with your client and suggest that you either return to the original project objectives or negotiate a new contract for the remainder of the work.Milestone payments are good for employersHigh-quality clients attract and keep high-quality freelancers and agencies by promising milestone payments.Any relationship is a risk. As an employer, you don’t want a freelancer to run away with 30% of the project fee and not finish the project. But it’s unreasonable to ask the freelancer to bear 100% of the risk. As long as your payment is tied to deliverables (if possible, in the clients’ hands), the client should feel more comfortable.How milestone payments work1: Figure out whether or not milestone payments make sense for your projectA milestone can be associated with either a task or a phase.If you base payments off of task milestones, this means your client would pay when certain sub-projects or drafts are submitted. Good for clearly-defined projects with clear timetable.If you base payments off of phase or time milestones, your client would pay you at a set time period (after a month or after a quarter, etc.). Good for “soft skill” projects without physical deliverables and ongoing projects.The choice largely depends on the type of project you’re doing.Milestone payments are most commonly used for projects with set product and time goals that last longer than 2 weeks. Ongoing contracts (where you get paid an hourly fee, not a project fee) can also use milestone payments, though these are often time-based payments and not tied to project goal completions. If you have a short project that lasts less than 2 weeks, it may not make sense to break out payments. However, some freelancers still require a deposit on contract-signing.2: Put your payment schedule in the proposalYou must include a payment schedule in your project proposal. If you usually require milestone payments, you may also have mentioned this (verbally or in email) during your initial meetings with a client.Submit a proposal (as usual) to the client with key deliverables broken out in a timeline.For example:Contract agreement: May 2014First draft due: June 15, 2014Second draft due: August 1, 2014Final due: September 1, 2014″[Client] will pay a deposit of $500.00 upon contract agreement. After which [Client] will pay 50% of remaining balance ($1,250.00) upon completion of the second draft, and the remaining 50% ($1,250.00) upon completion of project.”3. Negotiate the payment schedule with clientsChances are that your client is used to a payment schedule and won’t reject the concept of staggered payments. They may ask for fewer payments or try to get a larger percentage of the project payed later. This is reasonable self-interest (they’re protecting themselves against you leaving them) and your negotiation should be the process of you both carrying an appropriate amount of risk.A way to ensure that milestone payments happen in your favor is to have a strong reputation for reliability — this is where referrals from previous clients, testimonials, your client list, and social proof come in handy.But what happens when clients don’t want to pay on a schedule, and want to wait until the work is complete?Explain that this practice is common with independent contractors, and that this ensures that contractors are not abandoned by clients.Share previous experience with clients that has reinforced the need for this provision.Drop the client. If you get weird feelings about them and they don’t want to pay in stages, this might be the type of client who is going to run away with ¾ of the project for free. Listen to your gut.4. Put the payment schedule in your contractTry using our Contract Creator and plugging in your schedule on the Payments tab.Freelancers, do you use milestone payments?
All freelancers understand the importance of networking. But many screw up how to stay in touch with the people they’ve met.There are certain people who are worth developing a personal relationship with. When I say “worth developing,” I mean that when you meet them, you have a natural connection. You see that they can help you in your business or you can help them in theirs. This relationship can be built over one-to-one emails, plans to get coffee, sharing gigs and resources.These relationships take a hell of a lot of time.That time is, of course, well-spent. But for busy business owners, it’s challenging to maintain even 10 of those personal-business relationships. You end up leaving the 100+ other business cards you have in a stack on your desk, gathering dust.You may get 70% of your clients from that core group of 10 contacts and past clients. But don’t lose these “loose” connections. This is your largest audience. This is the foundation on which you’ll build your wider influence.Just remember the now-famous study by Mark Granovetter, who in the early 1970s interviewed a few hundred job seekers and to his surprise, found that people get jobs from information passed on by people they weren’t particularly close to. When he asked people where they got their current job, they kept saying, “Not a friend, an acquaintance.”It’s crucial for your business that you keep in touch with your acquaintances. So here’s what to do with those 100+ business cards: keep an email list and email them all (the same email) once a month or once a quarter.An email list is a scalable system. Once you see how valuable it is to collect & use email addresses of people you’ve already met, you can then build tools to get people to subscribe on social media and from your website. It will become your most effective marketing tool.Email is still the most powerful tool in your beltNo, social media has not killed email as a marketing channel. Email marketing has a 4,300% ROI and is the #1 preferred channel by customers (and clients) for marketing messages. It costs less than any marketing you will do and will take you less than two hours a month after you set it up.Like it or not, most of us spend our our working days in our inboxes. That’s where your future clients are.Don’t overthink itYou don’t need to come up with a fully-developed email marketing plan. You don’t need to create stunning graphics and headers. The most important thing is that you do it.All you need is 1 goal. “I want to share 1 useful tip with my contacts so they remember who I am and remember that I’m smart and on top of industry trends” is a great one.Take an article you read and comment on it. Share something you’ve learned on a project (without violating your NDA). Share something you’ve seen work really well in your industry. Share a productivity tip. I’ve listed 10 different kinds of emails freelancers can send to clients here.I’ve tried to write an example of how simple this can be. This is not a perfect email, but it accomplishes a few key things:“Hey [FIRST NAME],This month, I’ve been thinking about simplicity and how effective it is in business.Time and again, I see companies with a complicated marketing message that they think demonstrates expertise, but is really just confusing. They assume that 4 benefits is better than one core benefit.Here’s what I mean: what would you rather buy?EXAMPLE AEXAMPLE BI’ve been discussing this on @twitterhandle recently and got a few interesting comments, like @thatperson, who said “Interesting quote.” I’d love to hear what you think.”How long did that take me to write? 5 minutes. I demonstrated that a) I’m thinking deeply about business topics, b) I’m on social media (so they can follow me if they don’t), and c) I’m inviting further participation. Even if only a few contacts actually do this, it demonstrates that you’re an active, connected, thoughtful person.If you want to learn how to set up your email contact list and start emailing in less than an hour, read this post about email marketing 101.How do you use email?Want more posts like this? Join Freelancers Union now and never miss a post.
Here’s something every freelancer and solopreneur needs: A kick-ass short bio. I don’t care whether you are a super established marketing consultant or a travel photographer who is just starting out – you have to have a bio.Be it for all those amazing speaking assignments you’ll have, the “about” section on your website or just something for you to look at and be like “YES, that is professional me in 150 or so words” – a bio is never a bad idea.Granted, unless you’re blessed with extremely high confidence, writing about yourself can be a little awkward. Which is why I came up with 4 easy and quick steps that will lead you to a short description that will sum you up nicely, in both a professional and personal way.Start with the basics.The first sentence is the most important one, for obvious reasons. It needs to introduce you quickly and efficiently, and also create an instant connection to the reader. Which is why it’s important to start with your name first, followed by a short description of what it is you do.Be specific – if you are photographer who mainly focuses on destinations weddings, that’s what it should read in the first sentence of your bio. If you are a strategic storyteller who concentrates on a certain medium or channel, say so!Additionally, if you are targeting a specific audience (and you absolutely should), definitely put that in the first sentence too. Here’s an example: “I’m Lucy. I’m a strategic Snapchat storyteller who creates content for platforms geared towards Millennials.” (#goals, am I right?)Add a little bit about your background.What is your previous relevant experience? What has led to you being able to say what you are doing today? Did you learn yoga at a famous institute in India? Do you have a Master’s degree in physiotherapy? Have you spent the past 3 years working closely with startups on improving their branding and design? Here’s where you talk about that.Be sure to list 3 specific tasks and activities you performed on a regular basis that are directly connected to what you are doing or what you want to do now. For Lucy, the strategic Snapchat storyteller, that would include identifying relevant and current topics for Snapchat stories, creating engaging, effective content on a regular basis and helping her clients forge lasting connections with their audience.Name-drop.Talking about previous clients and projects is always a little difficult. Sure, you don’t want to seem pretentious and over-confident – at the same time, why shouldn’t you be proud of the results you achieved and the cool people you got to work with?As ever so often, it’s all about moderation. If you choose to name clients, don’t list more than 4, make sure you choose those who represent your best and most relevant work and are also fairly recent. If you don’t feel like naming clients, that’s totally OK too!Just add a note on the industry most of your clients are in, whether they are a startup or small/medium-sized business and whether there is anything other about them that’s special.Something personal.After all this serious talk, people will definitely be impressed with your professional side – but what about your personal one? You have to end your bio with a sentence that makes people feel like they now know you a little better.My advice here: Don’t take yourself too seriously. If you use this last chance to make an impression by mentioning that have read a book by every single literature Nobel prize winner and you’re also a long-distance runner, you might come off a little boring, to be honest.Have you read every single young adult science fiction book there is? Are you the queen of finding the best new brunch spots in town? Has no one ever beaten you at Scrabble? (Yes, all of those 3 actually refer to me.)By ending your short bio on a light note and including something original, something that really describes you, those reading it will not only remember it better – they will also feel a lot more connected to you.Here’s my short bio, by the way:I’m Melinda, a content and strategy coach with a focus on freelancers and solopreneurs. With a 5+ years background in marketing and social media, I have been able to fulfill my passion of helping clients expand their audience, find new on- and offline customers and foster customer relationships while continuing to be genuinely enthusiastic about the Internet and its possibilities. I have a proven track record with both large, international companies as well as early-stage startups and small owner-led businesses, helping them structure their online content and focus their efforts on what they want to achieve and where they are best able to do so. When I’m not doing that, I am actively challenging friends to karaoke sessions, ordering the biggest size of popcorn at the movies or just enjoying a night out with my husband.Your turn, now – paste your short bio in the comments and I’ll let you know what I think!
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is pleased with the way his side have reacted to setbacks this season and says the players have shown great character to reach the last 16 of the Champions League.Chelsea’s European campaign suffered a setback last month with a 3-0 defeat at AS Roma but they regained top spot in Group C after Wednesday’s 4-0 win over Qarabag in Azerbaijan.”This group is showing great character,” Conte told reporters after the match.”From the start we faced a lot of problems this season. Our answer was positive, almost always positive. For sure, the second half against Roma was bad.”These players show me every day great commitment, great will, desire to fight.”Conte has questioned the lack of preparation time between domestic and European fixtures and raised the issue again as Chelsea turn their attention to Saturday’s Premier League trip to Liverpool.”To have only one day to rest and only one day to prepare (for) this big game is not simple, is not easy. I think also it’s not right,” he said.”I don’t want to make excuses, but this is the reality.”Chelsea, third in the league, nine points adrift of leaders Manchester City, have won two and drawn three of their last five league games at Anfield.
Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said he would ease Gareth Bale into action after the injury-prone Wales international returned to full training on Friday, boosting his chances of a return from a lengthy lay off.Bale has not played a minute of football since injuring his calf against Borussia Dortmund on September 26. Just after returning to full training in November he was dealt another setback by straining a thigh muscle, his 19th injury since joining Real in 2013 for a club record fee of 100 million euros.”We need to make sure he is 100 percent but I don’t think he will need a lot of time to recover his fitness, he is feeling good” Zidane told a news conference on Friday ahead of Real’s Liga game with Malaga.”The important thing is that he is with us, that he trains, plays, because that will stop all the negative things happening around him. A lot is said about his injuries, but he is important to us. He knows that, I know that and everyone does.”Bale has had a nightmarish 12 months with injuries since rupturing ankle ligaments in a Champions League game at Sporting Lisbon a year ago, which required surgery and kept him out for three months.The winger has had persistent problems with muscle injuries since then, and has admitted in interviews that he regrets rushing back to action after ankle surgery.”I don’t know when he will play,” Zidane added.”We’ll see, but he feels good and today he trained without any pain. We know what he can bring to us. He is strong, powerful, very good technically and he works hard. When he has played he has always done well.”advertisementReal, who are third in the Liga standings, have won six out of 10 games in all competitions in Bale’s absence, drawing two and losing two. They face Malaga on Saturday hoping to eat into their 10-point deficit with Liga leaders Barcelona, who meet second placed Valencia on Sunday in a top-of-the-table clash.Real have faced heavy criticism for falling so far behind their arch rivals after sweeping to the Liga and Champions League double last term, but they did enjoy a cathartic 6-0 win over APOEL Nicosia on Tuesday.Cristiano Ronaldo struck twice to take his European tally to eight goals this season despite only scoring once in the league, while heavily criticised forward Karim Benzema also got on the scoresheet.Winger Marco Asensio is injured for the game while captain Sergio Ramos is a doubt after breaking his nose in last week’s goalless derby at Atletico Madrid.
Indian pacer Jasprit Bumrah got a wicket on his first delivery of the match against South Africa in the second ODI, well almost. The batsman, Quinton de Kock, survived despite the fast bowler hitting the stumps as the bails did not fall.South Africa were 4/0 when Bumrah came in to bowl the second over of the day, with wicketkeeper-batsman De Kock facing him.The length ball pitched outside off was defended by the batsman but it rolled back and spun in. De Kock tried to kick the ball away but it went on to hit the stumps. Bumrah and Team India started to celebrated, however, the fortune didn’t favour the bowling team as the bails didn’t fall and the batsman survived.Earlier, skipper Virat Kohli won the toss at Centurion and decided to field first. Team India are eyeing a 2-0 lead in the six-match series after they beat the hosts in the first match by six wickets at Durban.Kohli’s sublime 33rd ODI ton helped India to break South Africa’s 17-game winning streak at home. Ajinkya Rahane, at number four, also pitched in with a confident fifty.Going into the second match, South Africa suffered a huge blow after skipper Faf du Plessis was ruled out of the remainder of the ongoing series with a fractured finger.Already down with the absence of veteran AB de Villiers for the first three ODIs, the Proteas will now miss the services of the skipper, who struck a brilliant ton in the opener of the six-match series, albeit in a losing cause.advertisementDu Plessis damaged his right index digit during the six-wicket loss in the series opener in Durban on Thursday and is likely to require three to six weeks’ time to recover, according to a Cricket South Africa (CSA) statement.Batsman Farhaan Behardien has been added to the squad as a replacement, while Heinrich Klaasen was called in as a back-up wicketkeeper given de Villiers is also sidelined by a finger issue.Youngster Aiden Markram has been named as the stand-in skipper for the hosts for the remainder of the series.
A pair of Turkish ice dancers on Tuesday said they take care to ensure their relatively conservative costumes are firmly in place when they compete but maintained it was not due to any pressure from their government.Skating a day after French ice dancer Gabriella Papadakis suffered a wardrobe malfunction in her Olympic short dance program that left her briefly exposed, the Turkish team said avoiding a similar fate is their priority.”The most important part for Alisa when she designs it is keeping it safe,” Alper Ucar told Reuters following his free dance routine with partner Alisa Agafonova at the Gangneung Ice Arena on Tuesday.Ukrainian-born Agafonova, who represented the Eastern European nation until 2010, said: “I am doing what I like and what you see is what I decided that I like.”Wearing costumes that evoked ancient Egypt, they are among the most covered-up of any of the performers but the duo said it was their own choice.Ucar said the Turkish Olympic committee did not give them any specific directions on their costumes.”Turkey is a country where one side is Europe and the other side is the Middle East,” he said.”We are a multicultural country and our traditional designs for our costumes are generally very liked by the crowd. We are a democratic country, so there is no pressure. They are always supporting us and that’s why we are here.”WARDROBE MALFUNCTION CONTINUES TO HAUNT FIGURE SKATERS The clasp holding Gabriella’s green-and-gold sequined dress together came undone at the start of the routine (Reuters Photo)Gabriella was the latest victim of wardrobe malfunction at the Pyeongchang Games on Monday as the French ice dancer’s costume at the start of her Olympic short dance programme threatened to bring the whole thing down.advertisementAs Papadakis and partner Guillaume Cizeron began their scorching Latin routine to Ed Sheeran music, the clasp holding her green-and-gold sequined dress together came undone.Gabriella later described the incident as her worst nightmare.”My worst nightmare happened at the Olympics, I felt it right away and I prayed, it was all I could do,” Papadakis told reporters.Though the two managed to complete their routine, it was obvious that Papadakis was struggling to keep her dress up, while Cizeron also did his best to ensure it did not slip further.”It was hard to stay concentrated after the wardrobe malfunction we suffered,” Cizeron tweeted, though they still managed to finish their programme less than two points behind leaders Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada.MIN YURA’S WARDROBE MALFUNCTION ON OLYMPIC DEBUT Min’s costume came unhooked in the first 20-30 seconds of her routine (Reuters Photo)The French skaters, however, were not alone.South Korean ice dancers Min Yura and Alexander Gamelin had a similar mishap 10 days ago when the top of Min’s costume came unhooked.”In the first 20-30 seconds, this hook came undone,” Min said after the short dance on Monday, pointing at the top of her flaming scarlet costume.”It was falling off. The only thing that was holding it up was keeping my arms above here,” she said, gesturing to her shoulders.”Alex was trying to hold it up as much as he could while we were doing our transitions and everything, but the crowd knew what was happening and they kept screaming and supporting us.”I was thinking of stopping the programme but the crowd was so amazing I just kept going.”(Source: Reuters)
New Delhi, Apr 1 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi today hailed the Indian shooters who won medals at the recently concluded ISSF Junior World Cup in Sydney.In a series of tweets, he congratulated the entire team for its efforts.”In the recently held #ISSFJWC, our young shooters have brought home several laurels and made every Indian very proud. Congratulations to the Indian team that took part and achieved remarkable success in the tournament in Sydney,” he said.Mentioning the names of the individual shooters who performed well at the International Shooting Sport Federation Junior World Cup (ISSF JWC), the prime minister said their performance has brought smiles to the faces of 125 crore Indians.”The stupendous performance of our shooters will strengthen the #FitIndia movement and many more youngsters will feel motivated to play more and excel,” he said.India ended its campaign at the event with a total of 24 medals to grab the second place in the overall standings.PTI NAB ASG SRY
The whole world will tune into the 2018 FIFA World Cup curtain-raiser between Russia and Saudi Arabia on Thursday.As Vladimir Putin’s Russia prepares to host the biggest sporting spectacle in the planet, officials and organisers of the tournament will have to work round-the-clock to ensure a smooth ride over the next 32-odd days.Fan violence and racism will be the biggest challenges in front of the Russian authorities which has tarnished the country’s already fragile reputation in the past.Russia, please smile! Time for the World CupBut Russia has pledged to crack down on racism as the country faces increased scrutiny before Putin officially declares the tournament open. Russia will host World Cup from June 14 to July 15 in 11 cities including Moscow, St Petersburg and Sochi where the fans are infamous for their short-tempered nature.Russian soccer history has in the past been marred by discrimination against non-white people, and incidents of racist and homophobic chants also shot up over the past year. Racism can be a major hurdle during the 2018 FIFA World Cup (Reuters Photo)FIFA 2018 WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGEOn top of that, everybody still remembers the ugly scenes after the 2016 European Championship game between England and Russia as fans resorted to riots on the streets of Marseilles, causing damage to property and infrastructure worth millions of dollars.It was the second straight European Championship at which Russia fans were involved in rioting and it came just two years before the country was due to host the World Cup.Robbie Williams, Ronaldo all set for blockbuster opening ceremonyadvertisementAlso the Russian ultras, the name given to football hooligans in the country, are among the toughest to control in such situations.Russian authorities have given plenty of assurances that they will keep these hooligans under control but whether they will be able to keep crowd from hurling racist chants or abuses at the players remains to be seen.Just a couple of months back Russian fans were involved in racist abuse during a friendly match between Russia and France in St Petersburg.World’s eyes on Russia ahead of planet’s biggest sporting extravaganzaA Reuters photographer at pitch level for France’s 3-1 win over Russia heard monkey chants directed at French players on several occasions, including when midfielder N’Golo Kante came to the sideline for a throw-in.There have been other reported cases of racist abuse in the run-up to the tournament.To keep such incidents in check, one of the important steps taken by the authorities is to restrict the sale of alcohol at bars, pubs, restaurants, supermarkets and off-licences on the day before and day of any match starting from June 13. In total, 12 matches will be affected at the World Cup by the restriction.2018 FIFA World Cup: Racism, crowd violence major hurdles for Russia Russia President Vladimir Putin has promised a mood of celebration during the 2O18 FIFA World Cup (Reuters Photo)This is just a small step which has been taken to ensure the World Cup remains free of controversies. President Putin has also ensured the world time and again that Russia will provide the best experience to both the players and the guests of the tournament.”For our country, it’s a great joy and honor to receive representatives from the massive footballing family,” Putin said in a video statement released last week. He promised “a real celebration – filled with sporting passion and strong emotions,” he added.The 65-year-old, now in his fourth term as the President, ended his speech in English saying, “Welcome to Russia.”With so much riding on the country and with the Putin government’s reputation at stake, it is now up to the Russian government and public to deliver on all the promises made by the nation’s charismatic leader.
TOKYO, Jun 27, 2018 (AFP) Tokyo’s city government today passed strict new anti-smoking rules ahead of the 2020 Olympics, leapfrogging national legislation on lighting up that has been watered down after opposition from pro-smoking MPs. Japan has long been an outlier in the developed world, considered a smoker’s paradise where lighting up is allowed in most restaurants and bars. The city’s new laws ban smoking entirely on school premises from kindergartens to high schools, although a space can be created outside university and hospital buildings for smokers. Lighting up will be outlawed at restaurants in the capital, regardless of size. Restaurants can set up a separate indoor smoking space but customers cannot eat or drink inside the smoking area. Smokers who repeatedly flout the new rules, and offending restaurant owners, will face fines of up to 50,000 yen ($455). “We are now ready to be the host of mega sporting events like the 2019 Rugby World Cup and the Olympics,” said Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, who has frequently vowed to clean up the city’s act ahead of the Games. “The Tokyo one is stricter (than the national law) but from the perspective of global standards, I have to add that there are other countries that adopt far stricter rules.” The move came as lawmakers prepare a nationwide version of the smoking ban that has faced criticism for falling far short of measures needed to restrict lighting up indoors. The new national law will ban smoking at schools and hospitals, but there are loopholes allowing smoking outside the facilities.advertisementSmoking will also be banned inside large restaurants, but unlike the Tokyo city rules, establishments smaller than 100 square metres — about half the restaurant sector — will be exempt. Big restaurants and newly opened eateries can build a separate smoking space but have to ensure smoke will not escape the area. The health ministry had proposed a strict anti-smoking bill, aiming to stub out smoking at most indoor establishments. But the plan encountered staunch opposition from members of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s own Liberal Democratic Party, many of whom openly back the tobacco industry and smokers over health advocates. Struggling to win support from its own party, the government was forced to water the bill down several times. Japan’s government earns billions of dollars annually in cigarette tax revenue, and owns a one-third stake in Japan Tobacco, the world’s third largest tobacco company. The firm, which includes brands like Winston, Camel and Benson & Hedges, said they welcomed laws protecting against second-hand smoke but opposed “excessive” restrictions. “We strongly wish initiatives would respect people’s ‘freedom of choice,’ embracing difference and diversity of opinions and choices of various people,” JT spokeswoman Reimi Kawato told AFP. Ironically, smoking in the street is already banned in many places in Japan, under local regulations that impose hefty fines on violators. Cigarettes cost only around 440 yen ($4) a pack in Japan and carry modest health warning labels. The World Health Organization has given Japan its lowest rating for efforts to prevent passive smoking, and it even scores poorly in the region compared with countries like China and South Korea. Despite that, however, tobacco use in Japan has been falling, in line with a broader global trend. (AFP) SCYSCY
Russia defeated Spain 4-3 on penalties thanks to two saves by their goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev on Sunday to advance to the World Cup quarter-finals.The 32-year-old keeper saved Koke’s and Iago Aspas’ spot kicks after both teams had scored two apiece in Russia’s first ever World Cup penalty shootout, to set up a last eight clash with either Denmark or Croatia, after a lacklustre 1-1 draw over 120 minutes.The Russia-Spain clash was the first match of this year’s World Cup to go into extra time and then penalties.2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGEThe other match of the day between Croatia and Denmark was also forced to go to extra time and penalties.READ MATCH REPORTIn the last edition on July 1 both the knockout matches went to extra time. It is also the second time since June 21, 1986 that both knockout matches went to penalties. Croatia defeated Denmark 3-2 in the penalty shootout to reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup after their clash finished 1-1 after 90 minutes and extra time at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium.Croatia’s Luka Modric had the chance to send his team into a quarter-final against hosts Russia with a penalty four minutes from the end of extra time but Danish goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel dived to his left to save the spot kick.READ MATCH REPORTA dramatic start with two goals in the first four minutes promised a full-blooded contest to decide who would meet Russia in Sochi on Saturday after the hosts beat Spain on penalties in Sunday’s early game.advertisementDenmark went ahead after 57 seconds when Mathias Jorgensen scuffed the ball over the line off the foot of goalkeeper Danijel Subasic but Mario Mandzukic had the Croats back on terms with an equally scrappy finish three minutes later.The remainder of the contest failed to live up to the frenetic start with the physical Danes successfully nullifying the threat of the Croatian midfield that lit up the group stage of the tournament. Russia is the lowest ranked team to play in this editionRussia are the lowest-ranked team at 70 have knocked out Spain, who are ranked 10 currently.Russia came into the World Cup as the lowest-ranked team and has since managed to scored nine goals so far in the tournament — the most in this year’s World Cup along with Belgium.Russia’s victory was the fifth consecutive time a host nation won the penalty shootout at the World Cup.READ FULL STORYBefore Russia, the other four winners were France in 1998, South Korea in 2002, Germany in 2006 and Brazil in 2014.Spain opened the scoring with an own goal from Sergei Ignashevich. The own goal meant Russia became the first team to score multiple own goals in a World Cup tournament since 1966. Bulgaria were the last team to do so.Russia’s victory also means that at least one of this year’s finalists will not have reached the title decider for half a century, if at all. Spain fail to beat yet another host teamSpain has now failed to win a knockout game at three major tournaments since it won Euro 2012.The 2010 champions have never defeated a host country at the tournament. In 1934, they lost twice to hosts Italy, while they lost to hosts Brazil in 1950 World Cup.READ FULL STORYBefore Sunday’s match, the last time they faced a host nation was South Korea in 2002. They lost that match 5-3 on penalties.Also, Spain have now not won a World Cup knockout game in Europe since 1934. Akinfeev confesses he ws hoping for penaltiesIgor Akinfeev was declared the man of the match for his heroic saves, the veteran said the whole team and fans deserve the credit for the famous win.”I’m not the man of the match, the man of the match is our team and our fans, Akinfeev said.”I just feel emptied out,” Akinfeev said. “Over the whole second half and extra time we were defending our goal and managed it, we were hoping for penalties because Spain are hard to beat. Spain can’t always be lucky.” Iniesta retires after Spain crash outIniesta decided to call time on his international career after Spain’s loss. In his glorious international career he won two European Champions title and one World Cup.”It is a reality that is my last match with the national team,” Iniesta said. “Sometimes the endings are not as one dreams. It is the saddest day of my career.”READ FULL STORYThe diminutive midfielder played 131 matches for spain and scored 13 goals, including the winning goal in the 2010 World Cup final against Netherlands.advertisementIniesta was also a main member of Spain’s golden generation which saw them lift the European Championship in 2008 and 2012.First time a fourth substitute is used in World CupWorld Cup history was made with the first use of a fourth substitute, which FIFA now allows teams to have one more sub in extra time. Russia’s Alexander Yerokhin went on in the 97th minute against Spain, replacing fellow midfielder Daler Kuzyaev. The rule is aimed at reducing injuries and allowing higher-quality play in extra time, when players are most tired.Spain-Russia match sees special guestsKing Felipe VI of Spain was at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow. The king is a soccer fan who, as crown prince, attended the 2010 World Cup final in Johannesburg to see Spain beat the Netherlands 1-0 in extra time.Russia was represented by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who was on his feet and leaning on a protective barrier to watch the shootout. So close, yet so far for Kasper Schmeichel Kasper Schmeichel did everything he could have to deny Croatia a victory but he will feel hard done by his teammates, who missed three penalties during the penalty shootout.Schmeichel not only saved Luka Mordic’s kick from the spot in the 116th minute but also denied Milan Badlej and Josip Pivaric during the shootout but missed penalties from Christian Eriksen, Lasse Schone and Nicolai Jorgensen meant that Croatia beat Denmark 3-2 via penalty shootout and reach the quarters. The Croats will face Russia next in the quarters on Saturday in Sochi.READ FULL STORYSpeaking about the match, a disappointed Schmeichel said: “It is a strange feeling. There is enormous disappointment but also huge pride in our performance. We had the opportunity and I think we were the better team in the second half. It is hard to put all the emotions into words at the moment.” Goalkeepers ‘save’ the dayDanijel Subasic (shootout) and Kasper Schmeichel (match and shootout) both saved three penalties in the match. Subasic with his saves equalled Ricardo’s record when he did the same to knock out England, approximately 12 years and three hours ago, in 2006 exactly on this day.All five of the unsuccessful penalties were saved by the goalkeepers, which is the first time in the history of the World Cup that there has been five penalty saves in a shoot-out.Jorgensen scored the quickest in a World Cup gameIt took just 220 seconds for both Croatia and Denmark to score in Novgorod.Mathias Jorgensen scored the quickest in a World Cup game since June 2014, when Clint Dempsey scored against Ghana after 29 seconds. Jorgensen also became the first Danish player to score in a World Cup knockout game since Brian Laudrup in 1998, when he scored against Brazil.Mario Mandzukic’s equaliser for Croatia meant both teams scored with their first attempts on goal. Mandzukic is the second highest goal scorer for Croatia at the World Cup with three goals, as Davor Suker (6) netting more.advertisementCroatia has had seven different scorer in this edition of the World Cup.Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic, Ante Rebic, Ivan Perisic, Milan Badelj and now Mandzukic, have all scored, meaning no team has produced more goalscorers during this tournament.Croatia have reached the World Cup quarter-finals for the first time since 1998, when they went on to reach the semi-finals.(With inputs from AP and Reuters)