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Monday Special: New Ideas for Office Gift Exchanges and Alltop.com

If wading through endless sites on the internet looking for the good stuff wears you out, here is a great site that lists quality sites in categories.  Alltop.com is a natural followup to the post I published earlier this week about RSS (Really Simple Syndication) or as I like to think of it “Read Stuff Simply.”

Alltop describes itself this way:

You can think of an Alltop site as a “digital magazine rack” of the Internet. To be clear, Alltop sites are starting points””they are not destinations per se. The bottom line is that we are trying to enhance your online reading by both displaying stories from the sites that you’re already visiting and helping you discover sites that you didn’t know existed. In other words, our goal is the “cessation of Internet stagnation” by providing “aggregation without aggravation.” 

I really like the idea of a digital magazine rack because I don’t subscribe to magazines anymore (although I do read People when I’m at the “beauty parlor” – yep, my dirty little secret!)  I really dislike paying to receive advertisements, which is what I think magazines and television are.

Here is a short, entertaining video on how Alltop works.

Just for fun, I added an Alltop section on the right-hand sidebar on this site.  I chose “Leadership,” so the most recent five posts on Alltop under the topic of leadership will now display on my site.

I found an interesting site today by browsing through Alltop.  I found Management Craft: Discussions About State of the Art Management by Lisa Haneberg.  Her article “Ideas for the Holidays” offers a variation on an idea I’ve been toying with for my practice – the idea of having a holiday exchange of a different kind.  Instead of buying and exchanging gifts, I thought about having an exchange of useful, but no longer needed items.  Often, traditional gift exchanges turn out to be disappointing or not everyone wants to participate.  Lisa’s articles talks about a book exchange – what a great idea!  Have everyone bring in a book or books they have at home and no longer want/need and let everyone exchange during the holiday party.  You could theme the exchange to kitchen items, jewelry, art, almost anything!  It could even be holiday decorations that you no longer want, or no longer fit in the house that someone else would be thrilled to get.  Another alternative is having each person exchange a service – it could be cooking, babysitting, sewing, lessons on home computing, photography, lawn service, anything – in one-hour increments!  Instead of a blind exchange, staffers could “shop” at the party for a service they need and give one hour and take one hour.

Anyone else have any interesting holiday party or exchange ideas to share?