Friday, 1 March 2013

Newsletter Issue 231, March 2013

Sam Young Newsletter

Issue 231, March 2013
Hi guys,
How much to you trust the government? Businesses? Check out It's Always Been a Matter of Trust below and see how close you are to everyone else.
If you have ever been unable to get text out of a secure pdf, I tell you the way in Extracting Text from Secure PDFs
Don't forget, if you want to be taken off my mailing list, click here to send me a reply e-mail and I will remove your name.

It's Always Been a Matter of Trust

There are some annual trust surveys published around the world. 
We have one in New Zealand: a national poll conducted by a leading independent research company for Reader’s Digest, which has been run for eight consecutive years. The 2012 Reader’s Digest Trust Survey most trusted top 10 professions were 1 Firefighters; 2 Paramedics; 3 rescue volunteers; 4 Nurses; 5 Pilots; 6 Doctors; 7 Pharmacists; 8 Veterinarians; 9 Armed forces; and 10 Police. Politicians did not make the list. CEOs were down in 33rd place. Bankers scored more highly at 26 and financial advisors at 32; despite the global financial crisis (Scoop, 25 June 2012; Readers Digest, July 2012).
Our most trusted people were led by All Black Captain Richie McCaw in the number one spot, second place to Alison Holst, and third to Peter Leitch (of Mad Butcher fame). The bottom three spots went to Kim Dotcom at 98, Hone Harawira, 99, and, trailing in in last place, Bishop Brian Tamaki (Scoop, 25 June 2012). 
Global PR firm Edelman publishes an annual "Trust Barometer" survey, taken in 26 countries from a largely professional and well-educated pool of respondents. Their latest results reflect the widespread scepticism most of us feel about the ethics and practices of our political and business leaders with only 18% of respondents trusting business leaders to “tell the truth, regardless of how complex or unpopular it is”, whilst government leaders came in at a truly under-whelming 13% (The Economist, 21 January 2013; Edelman, 20 Jan 2013). 
The interesting thing is that global trust in the business and government leaders themselves is significantly lower than the trust we have our business and government institutions. In the US businesses are trusted 62% and the government 53%; Australia is 48% and 43%; the UK 58% and 47%. While institutional trust has improved in recent times, with statistics still so low, it is not really saying much. Our overall trust rating, as a global citizen, is 57%. Not a great scorecard (Edelman, 20 Jan 2013).
Edelman also run a companion study which samples a much broader group of the general public. This survey returned lower trust levels globally of 48%; 45% in the US, 43% in the UK and a staggeringly cynical 39% in Australia (20 Jan 2013). 
The Economist asks "Why the big gap between trust in leaders and the institutions they lead?" to which Edelman replies that "leaders have been slow to adapt to the requirements of a world in which top down is no longer the best way to lead, or in many cases even a viable one. Suffice it to say, there is nothing more top down than trying to lead the world from high up a mountain" (21 January 2013).
The Edelman surveys are useful because they look at the drivers in creating untrustworthy environments (20 Jan 2013). They cite two key reasons for our lack of trust in our governments, with a third due to corruption/fraud and a third to poor performance. In business, the top drivers are corruption/fraud at just over a quarter; at just under a quarter, wrong incentives driving business decisions; followed by 16% each to poor performance, transparency issues and lack of regulation/controls (20 January 2013). 
Edelman then talks through five sectors that organisations can tackle to improve their performance: engagement, integrity, products and services, purpose and operations. Engagement contain some items that I think have huge value, and that we often forget. Engagement, in Edelman's view, consists of four key factors: listening to customer needs and feedback; treating employees well; placing customers ahead of profits; and communicating frequently and honestly on the state of the organisation's business. Dotted across the other four areas are some key attributes of leadership: taking responsible actions to address an issue or crisis; addressing societal needs in everyday practices; having highly regarded leaders (20 January 2013). 
So here are some things we can do in our own organisations to build greater trust. If we work in the public sector, we need to understand that we work from an even lower trust base than businesses, and try harder to create engagement to build leadership and to eventually create trust.
Edelman Insights (20 Jan 2013). Global Deck: 2013 Edelman Trust Barometer. Retrieved 8 March 2013 from 
Reader's Digest (July 2012). New Zealand's Most Trusted Professions 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2013 from
Scoop (25 June 2012). New Zealand’s Most Trusted in 2012 Revealed. Retrieved 8 March 2013 from 
The Economist (21 January 2013). The World Economic Forum in Davos: Leaders without followers. UK: Author. Retrieved 29 January 2013 from

Extracting Text from Secure PDFs

If you have ever wanted to edit a pdf that was inadvertently locked by another employee, or copy a quote - or a bibliography - from a pdf that is protected, you will have found that the copy function has been disabled. You can't copy, so have to rekey the quote, word for word.
However, there is a much easier way.
Got to and click on the browse button to upload your pdf file. Click the "Send File" button.
Once your file has been processed, click on either the images or text tabs to download whichever parts of the file you wanted access to.
The text is plain text only, and is processed in a chunk of text per page. It is not pretty, but it is searchable, and you can then edit your file, copy your quote or copy the relevant bibliographical items easily.

Word Vertical Text Delete

Yet again, another great tip from TechRepublic. You know how sometimes you copy a list from somewhere else and you get the bullet characters as text? This time Jody Gilbert tells us how to make a vertical selection of those first list characters on a number of lines so you can delete them. She says:
Usually, we select text horizontally — a word, a series of words, a paragraph — from left to right or vice versa. 
But sometimes the selection has to be vertical. For instance, suppose you wanted to delete the leading characters in [a block of text]
To make a vertical selection, hold down [the Alt key] as you drag down through the text you want to highlight. 
Then press the Delete key. All your first characters are now deleted
Although we selected text at the beginning of the lines in this example, you can make vertical selections anywhere on the page. 
NB: Sometimes the Research pane appears when trying this selection technique. To fix: Release the [Alt] key before you let up on the mouse button. Word should retain the selection. If you hold down [Alt] but release the mouse button, Word may think “[Alt]-click” and open the Research pane in response.
Gilbert, Jody (24 January 2013). Five tips that will increase your Word productivity. USA: TechRepublic. Retrieved 26 January 2013 from

TLAs for SMEs

Here are this newsletter's TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms) for you:
  • OTOH, On The Other Hand. Text short-talk.

Please feel free to email me with any TLAs that you want to get the bottom (meaning!) of.

Tips, Short+Hot Keys
In this newsletter, we look at Find shortcuts:
  • Access, FrontPage, IE, Publisher, Windows, Word "Display the Find dialog box" Ctrl & F 
  • Access, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word "Repeat the last Find action (same as Find Next) with the dialog box closed" Shift & F4  
  • Excel "Display the Find dialog box" Shift & F5 
  • Explorer, Outlook, Publisher, Windows "Display the Find All Files - or Advanced Find - dialog box" F3 
  • Outlook "Enter a name in the Quick Find box" F11 
  • Outlook "Open Advanced Find dialog box" Ctrl & Shift & F 
  • Outlook "Open the Find text box when in an email" F4 
  • Publisher, Word "Find and replace" Ctrl & H 
  • Windows "Display Find: Computer " Ctrl & Windows & F
  • Windows "Open the Find All Files dialog box" Windows & F 
  • Word "Display the Go To tab of the Find and Replace dialog box" Ctrl & G 
  • Word "Display the Go To tab on the Find and Replace dialog box or update the files visible in the Open or Save As dialog box" F5 
  • Word "Repeat Find" Alt & Ctrl & Y

Hot Linx
Having just got my new super-thin Acer laptop, I now have 'case envy'. I have just seen the new TwelveSouth BookBook, and what a lovely piece of design that is. Check it out at 
Check out what is happening with Google Glass at and
Ever set goals then did nothing about them? Check out some great words of wisdom from Jean-Paul Hatala at

                                Catch you again soon!! E-mail your suggestions to me here

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