We video chat with people on the other side of the world. Cars are driving themselves. And Elon Musk has a spaceship that will take us to Mars. Vast and rapid change is happening across nearly every spectrum of life and business. Yet, one aspect of our culture remains relatively stagnant: the workplace. The way we work essentially remains rooted in the 9 - 5 protocol put in place over 100 years ago by Henry Ford. Why hasn't that changed?

For many of us, and particularly for those relatively new to the workplace, the way work is designed is a few frustrating steps away from being better. What if our company was run a little bit differently, or our company culture was really a top priority, or the way we work was an open forum to discover better ways to work for everyone involved? How would work need to change so we all can feel like we're working at forward-thinking companies like the Googles of the world?

Now, with the help of OpenWork, a non-profit organization, employees have access to a platform to voice their opinion and foster change. OpenWork believes any company has the potential to bring about progressive change by creating an open forum to exchange ideas from the ground up while remaining committed to working through change. OpenWork strives to spark change by working with companies to implement new practices and policies to create a better employee experience. OpenWork's mission is grounded by the beliefs of leaders representing organizations such as The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, The New America Foundation, The Society for Human Resource Management, and many others.

How can you get started with OpenWork? The first step is to participate in OpenWork's anonymous survey so they can better understand your experience at work and how best to help you. The survey measures several elements of the workplace experience including company culture, workplace productivity, and the importance of collaboration in the workplace. Once you've completed the survey, you'll be given a company score and can see where your company ranks among the rest. Rally your friends and coworkers to do the same, and OpenWork will help communicate the aggregated results to your company as a way to stimulate changes to the way we all work together.

Update: Take this survey to get your voice heard and join the OpenWork commitment to changing the way we work!

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Airbnb is a great option while traveling, but you should protect yourself from damage charges from unscrupulous hosts.

Airbnb offers an affordable option for people looking to be more comfortable as they travel.

However, there are downsides to staying in a host's home rather than a hotel. Whereas hotels are designed for constant streams of visitors and often have furniture built to last, at an Airbnb, you may be staying on old or cheap furniture that a host is using in order to maximize their profits.

And while most reputable hotels will have regular room inspections from staff to check for any wear and tear, Airbnb damage disputes are oftentimes he said, she said situations. If you are in an Airbnb and something breaks, there are a few steps you should take in order to ensure that you are not on the hook for damages out of your control.

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What Are NFTs?

Art Installation N°1 by Carlos Marcial. Rhett Dashwood / YouTube

If you're keeping tabs on the art and tech worlds, you've probably been hearing whispers about "NFTs" for the past month. Just over the past week they've entered the mainstream lexicon.

Twitter founder Jack Dorsey made the news for selling his first ever tweet. The app has been teasing paid subscription models and newsletter-like features, but tweets for sale is "the next frontier."

The 2006 tweet went up for auction as an NFT, and the current bid is $2.5 Million. But what does it mean to own that? Why would anyone want to? And what even is an NFT?

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Long gone are the days when the majority of Americans dreamed about owning a home with a white picket fence.

The traditional American Dream may be on its deathbed, but that doesn't mean a core component of the vision can't survive. It simply takes a diverse perspective. People can still believe they can attain their own vision of success in society with hard work, knowledge, and risk-taking. Investing in today's American Dream may literally mean investing money in our modern economy, starting with our infrastructure.

Real estate investing in particular is a lucrative method that can boost income and secure a better financial future for many. There's always risk involved, but the payoffs can far outweigh the uncertainty. Selecting solid financial investments is about confidence and competence. If you're looking for some advice on this kind of investment, here are a few savvy tips for new real estate investors.

Stick To a Specific Strategy or Niche

Real estate is a challenging sphere of the business world, one that requires several key skills: groundwork knowledge, networking, perseverance, and organization. True knowledge of the real estate market will come with time and experience, but it's a smart idea to select one area of the market and stick to it. This is the best way to attain in-depth familiarity with your specific niche.

First, choose a geographical area close by and then a niche strategy within it, such as house flips, rental rehabs, or residential or commercial properties. By doing so, you can become aware of current inner working conditions in the market and you'll have a better idea of how these trends may change in the future.

Be Vigilant About Viable Financing Options

While it takes money to make money, you don't have to use all your own money. A common misconception about real estate investing is that you must be wealthy to start off. This isn't straight fact, however. A majority of people can test the waters of real estate investing without a lot of initial cash in their pocket.

Aside from traditional financing options from banks and institutions, private lending options can be worthy solutions. Hard money lenders are popular, reasonable choices, and they tend to have fewer qualification requirements upfront. However, be sure to strategically choose a hard money lender to find the best possible fit.

Master the Art of Finding Good Deals

There may be hundreds of thousands of available properties for sale on the current market, but the bulk of them will never amount to the final money-making result you desire. Another great tip for new real estate investors is to use good math to estimate profit. Taking risks is part of the process, but you have the ability to analyze properties and use networking sources to find the greatest deal. You can't win every deal, but you can steadily work towards a thriving financial future.