Play Balloon Brigade to Find Your Strengths as a Worker

Balloon BrigadeHere is an online game that I am playing. My task: To water my flowers and to defend my “contraption”, on the right side of the screen, from the burny thingies that march over the hill from the left. My weapon: water balloons that I can fill on my contraption (until they sometimes burst) and flip (with a swipe of my finger) at the hot enemy hordes, thus extinguishing them. The challenges vary. Sometimes, there are just a few fiery intruders. If I throw high and hard enough, I can catch them as they first enter my space. Sometimes, though, I miss them. They toast my flowers and come right up to the foot of my contraption, trying to burn it down. No time to fully fill balloons then. Just a quick squirt and then fling, fling, fling the flaccid bags down to protect the contraption base.

How well I performed, through sixteen challenges, may offer a clue to where my strengths as a worker lie. Am I a strategic thinker? Am I quick? Do I think ahead to protect the flowers at my base when there is leisure to do so?

The game is called “Balloon Brigade”, available as a free iPad or iPhone download from Knack (, a San Francisco-based company that aims to analyze potential employee strengths based on game play.



Professor Bob Sutton offers advice about how to deal with jerks at work

Bob SuttonBob Sutton, Professor of Management Science and Engineering in the Stanford Engineering School, believes that managers and workers with negative, dysfunctional attitudes are a huge drain on organizational resources. He cites research that demonstrates that negative experiences are five times more powerful than positive ones. Power over others can blind us to our own boorish behavior. So, Sutton has written books to help businesses and other organizations become aware of their possible dysfunction: Good Boss, Bad Boss (2010) and The No Asshole Rule (Rev. ed. 2010).

Follow Sutton’s musings on his blog. Take his online test to see if you share the negative tendencies that make you a problem at work: The Asshole Rating Self-Exam, or ARSE (

Work Matters

Fly without fear with help from this free online tutorial

Fear of Flying Help CourseVeteran airline pilot Captain Stacey Chance knows that at least one out of every six adults has a fear of flying, otherwise known as aviophobia or aerophobia. Sufferers fear take-offs and landings. They may feel out of control or claustrophobic. They be frightened about turbulence or flying over water. They might even feel that terrorists will take over the plane.

Captain Chance wants passengers to feel safe and comfortable when they fly. That is why he developed this free online course. Take his hour-long tutorial to learn the true safety statistics of airline travel and get tips for dealing with anxiety and stress. Experience a virtual plane ride. Then board an actual aircraft and open your world.
Fear of Flying Help Course

Free Relationship Tests Just in Time for Valentine’s Day

Queendom.comCanadian offers free psychological self tests to help you to discover your relationship style. Are you a good listener? Do you need your space? Are you a taker or a giver? Take a quiz to see if your love is true; or, take one of four separate jealousy tests designed for gay men, lesbians, and straight women and men.

You can sign up for a free account to keep track of your scores or just take the tests and run. offers a variety of other personality quizzes, too, including career, IQ and health tests.

What are your politics, exactly? Take this free quiz to find out.

Political typology quizAs the election season starts up, it becomes important to be aware of the issues and how they are viewed by all parties. The Pew Research Center surveyed Americans about their political beliefs. They classified eight categories of “political typology” including Libertarians, Disaffecteds, and Hard-Pressed Democrats. Take this short quiz to see where you fall on the spectrum of American political philosophy.

Measure your romantic style at

Queendom.comMontreal-based Plumeus, Inc. [] developed this huge selection of quality self-assessment tests online. In return for free registration, sample from IQ tests, tests for personality and career choice, and inquiries about romantic style. QueenDom’s sister site, [] has an emphasis on psychological testing. Leave it to a Canadian company to offer free, scientifically valid personality tests online!

Ten Ways to Success Via Self Control

10 ways to self controlI sometimes have a hard time getting things done. I get distracted. I procrastinate. Now, psychologists have tested methods for me to control my worst instincts so that I can make progress toward my goals. Britain’s PsyBlog summarized the top ten techniques to aid self control.These include pre-committing to beating a bad habit and being optimistic that we will be successful.