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The World’s 10 Most Downloaded Apps All Have This One Amazing Thing In Common

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

SensorTower, a company that tracks data about mobile applications, has released its quarterly listing of the world’s most downloaded non-gaming apps. When you take a look at the list, particularly if you run a business, you’ll discover something amazing. You’re probably using most of these apps. In fact, many people in your company are using these apps. What’s truly amazing is that I’m using all of these apps on my Android Galaxy S7 smartphone and so are the people in my company. Not for fun or for laughs (well, OK…a little). But to help run my business. Slowly, but surely, mobile applications have evolved from novelties and time-savers to tools that our companies rely on day-to-day.

Yes, I admit that a few of the apps I’m using are a little more for my personal life than my company. But each and every one of these has some professional value – some more than others. Let me further explain.

#1 – WhatsApp. This is a chat application (owned by Facebook) that doesn’t require a mobile network – just a WiFi connection. It’s hugely popular around the world because many people don’t have mobile plans that can be used internationally. At my company, we use WhatsApp for group chats and for sending photos and files to each other over WiFi so I don’t have to incur data charges. I also have a few business contacts overseas and use WhatsApp to message them because it’s cheaper, more reliable and happens to be (for most of them) their primary messaging tool anyway. Read More…

Research Now Shows Why Job Interviews Are A Waste Of Time

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

I have been running a small business for more than twenty years. I have met thousands of people. I have hired employees, contractors and suppliers. I have sold products and services to countless customers. You would think by now I would have a good sense of when someone is telling me the truth. You would be very wrong. Even to this day, I’m still terrible at telling whether that person sitting across my desk is being straightforward with me or not. You just never know. I can talk to someone for an hour and, in the end, my decision to do business with him is based on a gut feeling.

That’s why job interviews are a waste of time. I’ve always thought this. Now there’s research to back me up. Read More…

A Restaurant Sees A 50% Increase In Sales After Banning Children

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

“Our dinner was excellent,” said one diner.

“This will make us come back again,” said another.

“I wouldn’t stop coming,” said a satisfied customer.

What is a restaurant in North Carolina doing that’s creating such a buzz? According to this report from WCNC, they’ve come up with a real crowd pleaser. They’re banning kids – and business is booming.

Read More…

The 1 Thing About Tax Reform That You’ll Absolutely Hate

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

Congress failed last week to pass healthcare legislation and, although there are likely to be changes to the Affordable Care Act in the future, their attention is now focused on tax reform. If you’re a business owner, you’re going to love this. How can you not?

The upcoming tax reform debate will be all about lowering our taxes.

For most of us that run companies, taxes are our biggest expense and we’ve seen this expense significantly rise over the past few years. But now the reverse may happen. Under the Republicans’ current proposals, the top individual tax rate would go down from 39.6 percent to 33 percent. Read More…

Your Open-Space Office May Be Killing Productivity

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

About ten years ago, I shut down our offices. Everyone in my company works remotely from their home offices or at clients. The decision could not have been timed better. Besides saving on overhead, it seems that I avoided one of the worst office design trends ever embraced by corporate culture: the dreaded “open office.”

Is this your office? Do you realize what you’re doing to your employees? Are you really making them work together in one room? Have we not evolved since the offices of 1923? Read More…

Microsoft Just Introduced a Killer App For 85 Million Customers…And It’s Free

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

“Didn’t we have that same product issue a few months ago?”

“I know you and I had that conversation a while back. Don’t you remember?”

“Why are we paying for Office and hardly using it?”

You’ve asked these questions. Now, you’ll have some answers. This week, Microsoft launched a new product called Microsoft Teams and, if you’re already one of its 85 million Office 365 customers, you don’t have to pay anything more for it. Read More…

A Startup CEO Makes No Apologies That His Technology Eliminates Jobs

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(This post originally appeared on Inc.)

Last week, I wrote here how Wendy’s, the fast-food restaurant chain, is deploying 1,000 kiosks in its restaurants across the country. The company said it was doing so not just to reduce overhead, but to respond to its customers’ demands for quicker service.

As I mentioned in the report, Wendy’s is not the only restaurant investing in automation. “Everywhere, companies like Wendy’s are automating,” I wrote. “Chains like Red Robin and Uno Pizzeria & Grill are using Ziosk tablets so that customers can order, pay and play games while waiting for their food to arrive. Wawa convenience stores, beloved in my hometown of Philadelphia, take all of their deli and sandwich orders via self-service kiosks. Airports around the country have restaurants equipped with similar tablets to quickly order a bite before a flight.” Read More…