October 2014 - Tank Stream Labs

TSL Workplace Ergonomics

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SAFETY WORKS ERGONOMICS_0Let’s face it, if you’re not at home or maybe squeezing in an hour at the gym? Chances are you’re staring at a computer screen… Ironically, like you are now.

Now if on average you spend 9 hours a day at work then indulge in some extra curricular web surfing in the evenings, your body may very well be thinking of disowning you.

Why? Well, with all this inactivity bred into your daily routine, you’re starving your body of efficient blood flow and optimum oxygenation.

Do you struggle with concentration? Have chronic back & neck pain dismissed as faulty anglo-saxon genetics? Are you nicknamed an incubator for disease and not a person who works at an incubator from all the sick days that you take? If you answered yes to any one of these then you might benefit in re-evaluating your workstation set-up.

As Tank Stream Labs is about to formally launch Level 9, we thought it might be helpful to pass on some ergonomic tips. Here are some must have items for your workstation to help improve your health and productivity.

The Start-up Throne

If you don’t have the luxury of purchasing your own chair direct from some overpriced, flashy, ergonomic store, don’t despair! Here are some simple things to correct your posture.

  • Adjust the height of your chair so that your feet rest comfortably on the floor.
  • If this makes your chair too low in relation to the desk, use a foot rest and raise the chair up to the desired height.
  • When sitting, your knees should be level with your hips and the seat of your chair should not press into the back of your knees.
  • Your backbone should be straight and your shoulders back.
  • If your chair cannot be adjusted so that your back is straight, place a cushion between the curve of your lower back and the back of the chair.
  • If you have a history of back pain it might be worth investing in a proper lumbar support, even something with magnetic therapy. Visit http://www.badbacks.com.au for a list of all their products.

The Start-up Portal 

Whether it’s a laptop or a monitor, we are all guilty of getting, “too up close and personal” with our screens. Be kind to your eyes and exercise some visual restraint.

  • The monitor should be roughly an arm’s length away.
  • The top of the screen should be at eye level or just below so that you can look down at a slight angle to do your work. Remember, you rule the screen, the screen doesn’t rule you!
  • If you wear bifocals, use a pair of single-vision lenses with a focal length designed for computer work.
  • Neither you nor the monitor should ever directly face a window.
  • Remember to rest your eyes every 10 minutes or so by looking away into the distance.

The Start-up Platform 

To stand or not to stand, that is the question? Your desk area should be deep enough to accommodate your monitor, be at the appropriate distance and have the things you use most often use directly in front of you. New research shows that alternating throughout the day to a higher platform to stand when working may have added health benefits and increase concentration. Here is a link to calculate the correct height of your desk in relation to your chair and screen http://www.ergotron.com/tabid/305/default.aspx.

The Start-up Artillery 

Keyboard – You should have your forearms near to horizontal and your wrists straight when using the keyboard.

Wrist rests – If your workstation has been set up properly, a wrist rest should not be needed. If you do use one, make sure that you only use it when pausing between typing, not when actually keying to avoid strain on the wrists.

Mouse – The mouse should fit the size of your hand so that it is comfortable to work with. It’s a good idea to position the mouse on the desk so that the weight of your arm is supported by the desk.

Phone – If you use your phone frequently, save your neck and invest in a headset. Say no to cradling your phone between your head and shoulder.

And our final tips? Have a cup on your desk that you regularly fill with water! Not only will the water help keep your concentration up but, the act of getting up is a great excuse to stretch your legs! And whilst your up, grab another co-worker for a bout of Ping-Pong rivalry! They say, competition is good for the mind… If not for the ego.

For more “Deskercise” visit http://greatist.com/fitness/deskercise-33-ways-exercise-work, 33 smart ways to exercise at work.

GoCatch is Hiring!

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GoCatch is on the hunt for exceptional people to join it’s team. This is a great opportunity for a few number of highly effective and driven people to join one of the fastest growing and highest profile startups in Australia.

GoCatch is only accepting the very best of the best so, those applying will have to be at the top of their game to make it through. Below are links to each of the individual JDs on AngleList. If you know think you are THE perfect match please click on one of the links below.

Get ready to challenge yourself and take your career to the next level.

Talking shop with Expert360.com in a white-collar marketplace

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TSL-Expert360articleTank Stream Labs sat down with Co-founder Bridget Loudon, to chat about using freelancers, raising capital and building a sustainable sales model.Not to be confused with Freelancer.com or Airtasker.com, Expert360.com is redefining the way in which small to medium businesses hire desirable local talent.

“The way in which companies need talent is really changing,” says Bridget Loudon, co-founder of Expert360.com.

“Working at Bain & Company, my co-founder Emily Yue and I saw companies running projects in need of people for only a short period of time with nowhere really to go.”

Companies of all sizes are learning that if they do things in a lean, project driven way, they can become more successful. Traditional recruiters on the other hand, still lack the resources and incentives to support small to medium businesses seeking skilled individuals for a single project.

Loudon explains, “I was starting to see this growing pool of talent in Australia, some of the best in their respective fields. Who want more flexible hours to choose the projects they want to do and who want to work with smaller businesses. They don’t want to be locked down by big corporate. We thought, can we create an O-Desk-Elance for local highly skilled professionals?

The answer is clearly yes! With Expert360.com set to make $1 million dollars in revenue this year alone.

How did Expert360.com find quality white-collar talent?

“In the beginning, we recruited people using LikedIn. 1 in every 3 people immediately signed up to this concept. It was just a webpage! We then began to see great people apply unprompted and that is still how it happens today” confesses Loudon.

Expert360.com assures the quality of each candidate they represent through a rigorous process of vetting. The company now caters to numerous enterprise clients, small to medium businesses with about 10-150 employees and focuses on 4 key project types: Strategy, Marketing, Finance and Operations.

“And if you hire through Expert360.com, our technology platform lets you manage contracts, payments, milestones to make sure your project is delivered on time,” assures Loudon.

How is Expert360.com so successful at raising capital?

“A lot of coffees! Em and I pretty much took ourselves 100% out of the business for 3 weeks. We got our messaging really cohesive and we had good traction…It takes nothing to go out and ask for money, but we pushed the business as far as we could on our own capital and investors value that,” affirms Louden.

As a result of their success, Expert360.com is frequently asked to help start-ups seeking capital. Expert360.com’s advice to any new start-up looking to raise capital? Follow these 3 simple tips.

Tip 1: Pick 3 things you would like to show investors & spend all your resources proving those.

Tip 2: Write a clear one pager or pdf.

  • Who is in your team?
  • Who are your customers?
  • What is your traction?
  • What will you use the funds on?
  • Where are you going to get to with that money?

Start talking to people early and get some feedback because you might need to do a few more things before you can actually raise capital.

Tip 3: Try and raise capital as quickly as possible. If you are seen to be raising capital for too long, people know and it makes your business questionable.

What is the key to building a successful sales model?

It is common knowledge that anyone can make some sales, no matter what they do.

“There’s always going to be someone that’s going to buy a flashing light yoyo but, it’s about who can get in there and consistently grow 30% month on month as a start-up. And that’s what you should be aiming for,” advises Loudon.

According to Expert360.com, the secret to building a successful sales model is a narrow focus and managing capital really wisely. Expert360.com is not shy to admit it ran the business “on a credit card for 6 months” prior to seed funding!

“Everyone has a big vision but you have to be very narrow in your executional focus if you want to succeed.” – Expert360.com