As Matt Toledo writes for Forbes, one of the surprising truths in the professional services world is that the more you give and help others, the more you reap the benefits.
“The rule of reciprocity goes into effect, and you start leveraging the power of relationships. The cultivation of long-term, deep relationships with people you can trust when referral opportunities arise can create something meaningful professionally and personally.”
According to Toledo, there are three simple ways you can be generous to those around you, while also reaping the benefits of these relationships for your business.
Read the full article: Relationships: The More You Give The More You Get (Forbes)
Andy Wood, chairman of computer vision and facial animation company Cubic Motion, expects that everyone will have their own online avatar.
“Within the next 25 years, everybody can have an online persona ‘digital double’—it doesn’t need to be creature, age or gender-specific—just like the Ready Player One movie,” he says. “Every walk of life, profession, and social lifestyle will have access to an online digital double.”
Read the full article: 25 Crazy Predictions About the Next 25 Years (Best Life)
Since 2000, National Institute for Standards and Technology’s Face Recognition Vendor Test (FRVT) has provided independent evaluations of commercially available and prototype facial recognition technologies to help determine where and how the technology can best be deployed.
These NIST tests are at least partially responsible for the improvement in facial recognition technology over the past couple of decades, according to Brian Martin, a senior director of research and technology at IDEMIA, a provider of trusted identities.
“It makes everyone compete to make a better face recognition technology,” Martin said. “I think that if it were not for the NIST tests, face recognition technology probably would not be at the state where it is today.”
Read the full article: How NIST helps facial recognition make better matches (GCN)
Cubic Motion, the computer-vision company behind Siren, has been turning human performances into digital models for about a decade now. It recently partnered with the companies behind “Fortnite” and other popular games to perfect real-time image capture.
Cubic Motion is the computer-vision company behind Siren, an animated character, with hyper-realistic details around her eyes, skin and hair, similar to those seen in big budget video games and 3D-animated movies. Siren is remarkable because while making her debut at last week’s Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco, she was being puppeted by a real actress in real time.
Cubic Motion executive chairman Andy Wood describes “digital humans” as “something that looks, behaves, and has the mannerisms of a real human, to the point that you can’t distinguish the animation from the real thing.” Wood estimates that “sooner than two years” from now, each person could have access to the technology required to create and puppet their own digital body double in virtual reality, from their own home.
Read the full article: This company makes hyper-realistic ‘digital humans’ — and it could be the key to merging real life with virtual reality (Business Insider)
According to Jaspar Weir, co-founder and president of TaskUs, making a social impact needs to pass the sniff test to determine if the “good” work is truly meaningful or just marketing.
“It’s important that your organization is doing good because it means something to you as an individual and a brand. Most importantly, in my opinion, it should matter to your employees. An authentic passion should drive work that a company does to make a positive social impact.
Read the full article: The Social Impact Sniff Test: Is It Meaningful Or Just Marketing? (Forbes)
TaskUs Inc. — a Santa Monica, California-based company that runs business outsource process centers around the world, including call centers — signed a major lease for new commercial office space in New Braunfels as it continues to hire in the region and needs more space for its growing employee footprint.
TaskUs expects that within a year it will have about 1,000 employees between San Antonio and New Braunfels. In the coming years, it may have upwards of 2,000 workers in the region, the company told the San Antonio Business Journal.
TaskUs is leasing about 41,000 square feet in the 105,000-square-foot Heritage Plaza building that sits on 12.6 acres on the North West side of New Braunfels.
Read the full article: Call center company signs new lease in New Braunfels as expansion continues, to hire thousands (San Antonio Business Journal)
The days when CEOs only had to focus on running their businesses are over. Today’s leaders need to be “woke” as they stand for something greater than their own products or services. Those who don’t must be prepared to suffer the wrath of the hashtag. Our business climate is calling for companies to proactively take on issues important to their key stakeholders – regardless of how that may impact their bottom line in the short term.
The single biggest mistake a business can make is not knowing its core values. The core values are the set of principles, morals and policies on which the company is based. These values drive how the business operates and treats people. People want to invest in and buy from companies and leaders they trust and respect. Conversely, many consumers will go out of their way to avoid doing business with companies tainted by negative news about how they treat employees, women, customer complaints, environmental issues and illegal practices.
Here are five common mistakes that tarnish a brand:
- Delayed Action. One of the outcomes we see as a result of #MeToo, #TimesUp and even #deleteFacebook movements is that big businesses are now acting fast to correct issues. Executives are fired first and investigated later. There is no time to hide behind legal delays and “no comment” statements. The public is playing judge, jury and executioner, and companies with core values can better distance themselves from controversies or even take an active role in championing movements they support.
- Lack of Transparency. Now more than ever, leadership is held accountable for its actions, so it’s crucial that there is transparency from the top down. One of our CEO clients holds regular all-employee town hall meetings where he answers ANY question posed, even about his own compensation. Core values help because well-managed companies do not fear scrutiny.
- Not Planning Ahead. When a crisis hits, you need to act fast – but this can only be done when you are prepared. Just look at the “unfriendly skies” and the crises airlines have faced with passengers being forcibly removed from planes and dogs dying. In contrast, look at a company that is committed to its core values and communicates them. You may be surprised to find Delta Airlines on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list, especially since no other airline has made the cut in over a decade. Delta is also found on Forbes‘ Best Workplaces list and has a 4.3-star rating on Glassdoor. Delta’s mission statement is to “form a force for positive local and global change, dedicated to bettering standards of living and the environment where we and our customers live and work.” Its value is actualized, its employees are happy, and thus they provide a better customer experience.
- Lack of Alignment. Each company needs to come to a point where all the stakeholders agree on core values. This will direct operations, budget allocations and prioritization of time and resources. Think of Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan that empowers everyone to accomplish more and overcome obstacles to succeed. This one core value has impacted all business decisions for the company for the last three decades. The cohesion in mission and messaging are central to its success.
- No Focus. Businesses can’t address every issue in the world, but they can support causes and issues that directly impact their customers, employees and communities. A perfect example of how focus can drive initiatives that further build the brand can be seen in CVS’s decision to stop selling cigarettes. Another example can be seen in Dick’s Sporting Goods’ proactive decision to raise the age for firearm purchase following the shootings in Parkland, Fla. Both of these brands are authentic to their core values of health and family, while seeking the social good above bottom line.
At OWC, we work with companies to help identify and amplify their core values. It supports our own mission to build and sustain business reputations. Let us know your business core values @OWCPR.
TaskUs, a Los Angeles company that specializes in providing a plethora of business services to digital brands such as Tinder, Wish, Hootsuite, Hotel Tonight and Sparefoot, is expanding its San Antonio-region presence with as many as 1,000 new positions in New Braunfels.
Chief Operations Officer Joe Buggy on Tuesday said training already was under way for the first 50 employees at the 41,000-square foot Heritage Plaza location.
He said the site was expected to be online by the end of April.
Read the full article: TaskUs to bring as many as 1,000 jobs to New Braunfels (San Antonio Express-News)
Cubic Motion’s computer vision technology was on display today at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. The technology tracks more than 200 facial features at over 90 frames per second. It automatically maps this data to high-quality digital characters in real-time. Cubic Motion’s motion-capture technology allows a live actor to perform within the entertainment and game world in real-time. The technology transforms the production process, allowing directors and producers to see the result instantly and perform continuous retakes, saving time and money when developing games, film, TV and virtual assistants.
“We are offering the keys to unlock a virtual world, enabling content producers and game developers to more easily interact with our technology and streamline the creation process for performance driven real-time digital humans,” said Andy Wood, Chairman of Cubic Motion, in a statement. “By 2020, this will no doubt transform content production across the board by making this technology universally available. By 2024, we may all be interacting with digital humans in some way or other, whether its via headsets, films, TV, games, live performances and broadcasts, or by directing digital assistants in our homes in real-time.”
Read the full article: Epic Games shows off amazing real-time digital human with Siren demo (VentureBeat)
Delaware could be one of the first states to adopt mobile driver’s licenses. The Delaware Department of Transportation announced Tuesday that the state’s Division of Motor Vehicles has launched a six-month pilot of the digital license. The pilot includes around 200 state employees and stakeholders.
The state is running it alongside IDEMIA, the company that produces Delaware’s physical licenses and identification cards.
Read the full article: Delaware to test mobile driver’s licenses in pilot program (The Washington Post)