4 Graphic Design and Data Visualization Creators for Beginners

We love graphic design and data visualization at Fireside Insights, but oftentimes, we get some help to quickly and easily create the visuals we need. The following tools simplify the process of designing a professional image and displaying data in a coherent way, and you can use them in your personal and professional lives.  Continue reading 4 Graphic Design and Data Visualization Creators for Beginners

Career Perspectives: The Life of a Registered Nurse

At Fireside Insights, we believe the best way to learn about potential career opportunities is through exposure. In this new recurring series, Career Perspectives, we share our peers’ accounts of their jobs to give you a glimpse into different professions. Our feature this week is Rebecca Klug who received her Master of Public Health from Boston University and B.S. in Nursing from St. John Fisher College. As a registered nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital, Rebecca gives us insight into her profession.
Continue reading Career Perspectives: The Life of a Registered Nurse

From Side Gig to Successful Business: A Fireside Chat with Raven Smith, Founder of Crystal Clear Tutoring

Raven Smith is a chemist by trade and a natural educator. After finishing college at Northwestern University in 2014, Raven began working as a Quality Assurance Specialist for a large manufacturing company, while tutoring as a secondary source of income. After just a year, the demand for her tutoring services had increased so much that Raven was able to work solely as an educator and legitimize her business. Working from 8:00am to 10:00pm, tutoring consumes much of Raven’s life, but when she isn’t busy tutoring you can find her traveling the world.

During this Fireside Chat, Raven and I discussed how she turned her side gig into a legitimate, burgeoning business with employees- Crystal Clear Tutoring. Continue reading From Side Gig to Successful Business: A Fireside Chat with Raven Smith, Founder of Crystal Clear Tutoring

11 Tips to Becoming a Process Map Pro

At Fireside Insights, we like to share tools that we constantly use in our work lives. As someone whose job revolves around conducting gemba walks and sketching process flows, I have gotten to become more proficient at building process maps which are diagrams that display the workflow of a process or series of processes. Just as you would present quantitative data in a visual format that is easier for your audience to ingest and interpret, the same should go for qualitative data. Instead of a numbered list detailing each step, a process map can more clearly show the relationship between processes and any concurrent or dependent steps.  Continue reading 11 Tips to Becoming a Process Map Pro

Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Your Life Easier (for Mac and PC)

When you’re hitting the pedal to the metal on a project, the key is to work smarter and not harder. Over the years, I have come across tons of keyboard shortcuts by accident. In case you haven’t discovered the full power of your keyboard, check out these commonly used shortcuts that are bound to make your life a lot easier. Continue reading Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Your Life Easier (for Mac and PC)

Using Technology to Change Consumerism: a Fireside Chat with the Co-founders of Frntal

Hameed Bello and Marlon Taylor met at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where they were classmates and fraternity brothers. With a similar “get-it-done” work ethic and itch for entrepreneurism, they co-founded Frntal, an app for users to lease and rent items in a peer-to-peer marketplace. Anything from books, to landscaping equipment, to a parking spot can be rented from Frntal, allowing lessors to earn money on unused items and lessees to save money instead of purchasing. Frntal launched in February of 2017 and has 500 active users since its inception.

In this Fireside Chat, we learned about the opportunities and challenges of founding a tech startup, and most importantly, how to make and save money using Frntal. Continue reading Using Technology to Change Consumerism: a Fireside Chat with the Co-founders of Frntal

Going Lean: Setting SMART Goals

Two weeks ago, I recommended a few books about business and entrepreneurship, and Eric Ries’ Lean Startup made it to that list. Ries’ approach to entrepreneurship heavily relies on Lean manufacturing, a management philosophy derived from the Toyota Production System in the 1990s when Toyota identified seven wastes (“muda”) to eliminate to improve overall customer value.

You can apply Lean tools to most aspects of your life; you don’t have to be in manufacturing or management to streamline processes. This week, we’ll discuss setting achievable and clear goals using the SMART goals method.  Continue reading Going Lean: Setting SMART Goals