Smoking Pot Causes Irreversible Side Effects To The Decision Making Power Of The Brain

Marijuana refers to the dried plant materials from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa (including the stems, seeds, flowers and dried leaves). The plant contains mind altering, psychoactive compounds and is one of the most commonly used drugs in the United States. Statistics reveal a startling increase in pot consumption since the year 2007 among young adults of the population. Given the recent hue and cry to legalize Marijuana in a number of states including Washington, D.C., Oregon and Alaska, it is important to keep in mind the drawbacks associated with marijuana consumption.

According to latest research, smoking pot has irreversible side effects on the brain. The study which was published by the University of Texas studied the brains of marijuana smokers and found unintended abnormalities in the brains of chronic smokers, particularly those who smoked pot at least three times a day. The abnormality, it seems was related to the “reward system”, namely the   orbitofrontal cortex of the brain which appeared to be significantly smaller. According to the lead author of the study Francesca Filbey, this is region that is responsible for helping us make sound decisions.

A startling observation further noted the higher functional connectivity of this region in order to compensate for the reduction in size.

The detrimental impacts associated with marijuana consumption have repeatedly been highlighted by a number of studies including an earlier Harvard study published in the Journal of Neuroscience which suggested that parts of the brain linked to motivation, namely the nucleus accumbens and the amygdale also showed visible impacts in people who smoked as little as four times in a week.

According to health experts, these are the most fundamental parts of the brain that are responsible for allowing individuals to ascertain their pleasure points in the world and identify things that are bad for them. In short, these parts help individuals maintain a sustainable lifestyle and to assess their decisions. The impact of marijuana consumption on these brain parts raises significant alarm for individuals and for health experts regarding its usage and more importantly its vast popularity and legalization.


Learning to Manage Effectively Irrespective of Generational Stereotypes

Effective workplace management is the key to success as it enables organizations to meet challenges and to create newer opportunities in order to nurture their growth. For hiring managers, the biggest challenge however is to survive the generational stereotypes that have plagued organizations for decades. It is important to realize that the key to effective management and developing good organizational culture rests in creating a match that works for your organization. Hiring therefore should be based on personal traits, skills, capabilities and potentials and not on generational stereotypes. In such a scenario, managers who work with teams comprising of Baby Boomers and Millennials struggle to find the balance that can lead them towards success.

Far too much importance is given to Generation X, Baby Boomers and the Millennials. Many managers are cautious while hiring individuals from certain generations based on the stereotypes that are so easily accepted. Another reason for this maybe the problems that emerge due to conflicting views that these individuals hold, which may metamorphose into greater problems in the long run.

While trying to effectively manage a team irrespective of generational stereotypes, it is important to understand the factors that contribute to the differences between these generations. We believe that there are two primary reasons for the same – Demographic and Behavioral.

While the changing face of technological advancement has created a certain set of behaviors for some individuals; for others, and particularly for the aging population that have to face pressures associated with retirement, the demographic differences may give rise to a series of conflicts that arise from differently perceived values. These differences may either be real or imagined.

The best way managers can create harmony among their team is to mentor their employees in a way that ensures their personal development without undermining their individual values. Ensure your team feels secure in their working relationships and that an interactive culture is encouraged in order to keep work meaningful.

Understanding The Reason Why Businesses Fail

According to statistics, nearly fifty percent of all new startups fail within their first year while another 50 percent tend to fail during their third year. Hardly 20 percent of all new businesses are able to survive in this realm of cut-throat competition and survive to maturity or emerge as major players in the industry. Given the high failure rates, it gives one furiously to think about the reasons for failure of businesses worldwide. The most simple and widely accepted explanation for this is that businesses tend to run out of money. Lack of financial resources accounts as the major cause why businesses fail but managerial shortcomings too play a significant role in sending a number of businesses towards their doom. Some of the most successful entrepreneurs and businessmen believe that a successful business is in fact built on five pillars that are:

  • Finances
  • Personal Management
  • Marketing
  • Product/Service
  • Administration

For a business to grow successfully and to thrive, it is imperative that all five pillars grow evenly. A number of entrepreneurs fail to realize that while visionary leadership is essential for a startup, adequate management and administration also form a backbone of the business that must be taken into account in order to ensure success. Each business startup therefore needs to consider a detailed business plan that focuses on these five basic elements and contains revenue projections that can provide a thorough understanding of the targeted industry that one wishes to enter.

When we speak of knowledge, we imply that the applicant must be fully aware of the ins and outs of the industry and whether the same is expanding or shrinking. Also, deeper insight that allows the applicant to know whether the offered product or service will be purchased by specific age groups or demographics or not, is also required. Understand your audience and your customers, whether the product or service will be demanded more for its price or for its quality or for both and then proceed accordingly. Be on the lookout for “blue skies”- business plans that tend to fail in the market but seem highly lucrative on paper. Follow your gut feelings and plan for long term.