Archive | March, 2018

Two Questions That Will Increase Your Productivity

March 27, 2018


Sometimes the problem is a lot easier to solve than you think. If productivity has always been an issue for you or if you’re just in a slump and aren’t as efficient as you used to be, it’s time to ask yourself these two questions. And you must come up with a solid answer for each one.

QUESTION 1: When am I most productive?
QUESTION 2: When am I least productive?

That’s it! The questions sound simple, but the answers may take you a few weeks to find. Really pay attention to your output, your energy, and your overall happiness. It’s more than just “I’m a morning person” or “I’m not.” Keep track of which hours you seem most effective and motivated, and which hours are a total black hole when it comes to getting work done. You know the feeling–when your brain is fried and all you want to do is take a nap.

Once you have your two time periods (they should be a set bracket of time like 8 AM to 10 AM), make your calendar work for you. Do everything you can to schedule your most important work during your most productive time period. What simple tasks can you move to the least productive part of your day? Can you move a workout session or a standing meeting to a different time? You have the power to take better control of your work day — so do it!

Image via Dineshraj Goomany/Flickr.

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Need Help Saying No? First, You Need “Me Time.”

March 22, 2018


We recently blogged about one tip that can help you take control of your work day: blocking off your calendar for y-o-u. This trick requires you to block off two or three hours to do the tasks that never get done. Most likely it’s your actual work. You know, the stuff you can’t do when you’re busy responding to emails and going to meetings.

Have you taken advantage of that tip yet? If not, we have another compelling reason why you should start. Reverse-engineering your work day–that is, protecting a certain block of time each day without guilt or shame–allows you to say no more easily. You’ll be able to say things like:

  • No, I’m not available between 10 AM and noon. How about 2 PM instead? 
  • No, I can’t be there until after 2 PM. Let’s do 2:30 PM instead.
  • No, I’m unavailable at that time but I can make 10 AM work instead. 

With a reverse-engineered calendar, you’ll be able to respond quickly and without a blink when you’re asked to spread yourself too thin. You’ll be able to stick to a schedule that works more efficiently and maybe even get yourself out of a few commitments that were unnecessary in the first place.

Image via Henry Burrows/Flickr.

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Let’s Talk Internships!

March 20, 2018


If you think our brand assortment is diverse, wait until you see your career options in Spectrum Brands. As a fast-growing company, your career can start with an internship in engineering, marketing, sales or a corporate shared service and grow in a dozen directions. What a perfect way to try Spectrum Brands on for size!

Former interns praise our internships as practical, real-world experiences that bridge a great education into a rewarding career. We’re thrilled that many former interns and seasonal employees found a perfect long-term fit in Spectrum Brands. Recent graduates love the ability to change jobs without changing companies – taking on promotions or moving across functions, business units and geographies to learn and grow professionally.

With a Spectrum Brands Internship, you’ll get:

  • Hands-on, meaningful experience in engineering, accounting, marketing or another function related to your degree;
  • A real-world feel for our global, fast-paced company to decide if it’s the right work environment for you;
  • Exposure to company executives, tours of production facilities, social and philanthropic outings;
  • Opportunities to be heard. Last summer’s interns participated in consumer insights projects that influenced how our products are marketed and sold
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Congrats to Our Employee, Olympic Gold Medalist Matt Hamilton!

March 15, 2018


We’re still trying to process the UNBELIEVABLE success of our employee, gold medal-winning Olympian Matt Hamilton! We’re so lucky to have this curling champion walking among us at our World Headquarters in Middleton, Wisconsin. It truly was a “miracurl” on ice!

Upon his return from the Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, we greeted him with a rousing cheer (with some of us donning fake mustaches!) and a special parking spot: Reserved for Gold Medalists Only.

We have so much we can learn from Matt like the importance of…

  1. Great teamwork: Team Shuster knew how to communicate even under extreme pressure.
  2. Focusing on the details: In curling, millimeters can make all the difference.
  3. Flawless execution: Sweden was ranked number one in the world, so there was no room for mistakes.
  4. Believing you can win despite the toughest competition in the world: We’re talking about competing against the most talented athletes in the world–and still coming out on top!

Matt, you’re an inspiration to us all!

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Job Fair in Dixon, Illinois!

March 13, 2018


Mark your calendars! The Rayovac Packaging and Distribution Facility in Dixon, Illinois is hosting a job fair on Saturday, March 24, 2018 from 10 AM to 2 PM. Walk-ins are welcome, but you can save time by applying online in advance at

Here is just a sample of the positions we are hiring for:

We hope to see you Saturday! 


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3 Simple Habits That Will Make You More Successful

March 8, 2018


This isn’t a get rich quick scheme–we promise! But these habits are free, simple, and fairly quick. With just a little bit of effort each day, these positive habits can become a regular part of your life. Try to incorporate one–or all three–into your routine for the next seven days and see what happens.

  1. Read.
    Reading expands your mind! Pick up a book just for fun. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a business book, a self-help book, or a fiction novel. Take 30 minutes every day to commit to reading in the morning, on your lunch break, or before bed. If you can’t find the time, assess how much of your free time you’re spending on social media or watching TV. We bet there’s some wiggle room there. Set a goal like one book per month that will keep you motivated.
  2. Drink water.
    Have you heard? Water is so good for you! And it’s free! Your body needs to be properly hydrated to stay happy and healthy. Drinking water has other benefits too. Think about it: the more water you drink hopefully the less caffeine you’ll intake. And if you consistently stay hydrated it can help stave off unneeded hunger pangs, which means you could lose some weight in the process. Not bad!
  3. Exercise.
    We know, we know. You’ve heard this a million times. But the benefits of exercise are unparalleled. Not only will it keep you healthy and prevent sore muscles, but working out can also boost your mood and your productivity. Make a concerted effort to find out what works for you. Even a 15 minute walk twice a day can have huge benefits. Start a new routine by going for a walk with coworkers after lunch or family members after dinner.

Image via George Chen/Flickr.

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3 Ways to Tip the Work-Life Balance In Your Favor

March 6, 2018


Your work-life balance scale probably tips toward “work” if you’re reading this article. That means we need to find a way to tip that scale in your favor. Here are a few ways to create rigid frameworks for your personal time that can’t easily be thrown to the wayside for work.

  1. Exercise.
    Working out is an easy way to tip the scale back toward your personal life. Plus it has loads of benefits such as increasing your productivity, decreasing your stress levels, and making you happier and healthier. How many more reasons do you need in order to commit to working out? Sign up for an exercise class, a team sports league, a personal trainer, or partner up with a buddy so that you can’t bail out of your commitment.
  2. Unplug.
    Make up rules about unplugging. That might mean no reading or talking about work once you walk in the front door. Or only checking work emails at home after 9 PM. Or no work on Saturdays. Or the work phone gets silenced once you leave the office. Choose a few simple rules that fit into your lifestyle, but cater to your personal needs of family time, fun time, and me time.
  3.  Find a hobby.
    We tend to use the time we are given. That means if you have two hours, your work will take you two hours. If you have 45 minutes, your work may only take you 45 minutes. In short, we are motivated to get more done when we are busy. Commit yourself to a volunteer opportunity, photography class, or book club. Something that really excites you and you know you won’t give up when work gets in the way. If you need another reason to find a hobby, read about why a hobby is good for your career.

Image via Hans Splinter/Flickr.

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The Kindest City in America is…

March 1, 2018


WalletHub has declared the most caring city in America–and it’s Madison, Wisconsin! We’re always touting the benefits of living in the Madison area (our world headquarters are right next door in Middleton), and this list is one we’re proud to be on top of.

To calculate the scores, WalletHub analyzed three main categories: caring for the community, caring for the vulnerable, and caring for the workforce. That means statistics like highest percentage of carpoolers, highest percentage of volunteers per capita, and percentage of people who do favors for their neighbors comes into play. Here are the results:

  1. Madison, Wisconsin
  2. Virginia Beach, Virginia
  3. Lincoln, Nebraska
  4. Boston, Massachusetts
  5. Jersey City, New Jersey
  6. Pittsburg, Pennsylvania
  7. Chesapeake, Virginia
  8. Fremont, California
  9. St. Paul, Minnesota
  10. Seattle, Washington

Image via Jordan Richmond/Flickr.

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