German Insurance System

In Germany some types of insurance are mandatory: for example, health and vehicles insurance.The most important insurance for you to have in Germany is third-party private liability insurance. The essence of it is that the third party (insurance company) will be responsible for all losses you have caused in case of neglectful behaviour.Casual carelessness involves a variety of acts: breaking a glass in a café, or provoking an accident when not taking traffic lights into account, or whatever else. If you have a pet, for example a dog or a horse, you have to insure them separately, so that in case they caused trouble you can receive a compensation from insurance company and pay out losses. Third-party private liability insurance ensures protection for people with different activities (like driving, sailing, etc.). However, it does not insure hunting, for which different insurance policies are needed.The duration of third-party private liability insurance is usually either three or five years. It should be noted that you cannot cancel your contract before the end of term. So it would be better to use an annual insurance, which can be prolonged or cancelled at the end of the year and leaves you with more space for choice.Another useful type of insurance is household insurance, which can compensate you for the loss or damage to your property. The term of property here includes nearly everything: household appliances, clothes, dishes, windows and so on and so forth. However, if there is someone else’s property located on the territory of your household, it has to be insured by its owner, not by you.The insurance policies are paid to you if your possessions were damaged as a result of water/ fire accidents, burglary, and hooliganism. You should remember that you have to inform your insurance company if you are leaving your home for more than sixty days.If you hire a flat or a house, you have to bear in mind that your household insurance will not compensate you for the damage of the flat or the house.If you possess expensive things, you can use complex insurance policies, which encompasses various types of damage.For cyclists in Germany insurance is almost mandatory, as the number of bicycle thefts is quite large. It is also useful to have such insurance if you have two or more bicycles. Some insurance policies may include bicycle insurance, but not all of them, sometimes you have to do it separately.Self-employed people must insure their working equipment by themselves, while usually this is done by an employer.
As in the previous case the duration of the household insurance is either three or five years and you cannot cancel your contract before it ends. So, again, it’s better to use an annual insurance in order the have a possibility to quit if you want.A very useful insurance for foreigners in Germany is legal assistance insurance. It frequently happens that foreigners face various situations (conflicts with employers, neighbors, road accidents, etc.), which are different from how they can be dealt with at their home countries. Legal assistance insurance compensates you for all court expenses. It should be noted that trials in Germany are expensive. All fees are to be paid beforehand. The amount of fees usually depends upon the disputed sum. For example, if it accounts for 10 000 euros, the fees can be up to even 9 000 euros. So, if you have the legal assistance insurance, the insurance company will pay out your expenses. Also, such insurance usually covers the loss of driving license, losses caused by conflicts with tax authorities, landlords, inheritance advices, etc. However, family issues are not included.You may also use insurance for death and disablement. People usually try to avoid even thinking about it, but it’s obvious that life is too unexpected to be careless about it. The amount of money paid to your family in case of your accidental death or life-threatening injury exceeds your annual income by five to six times.In case of injuries such as loss of a finger the compensation is equal to thirty per cent of your annual income, for the loss of a leg – fifty per cent, for total blindness – 100 per cent.You can also use term life insurance, as it provides your family with compensation after your death. The compensation is paid for any cause of death. The insurance itself is not expensive. In order to get it you have to provide the insurance company with your medical history.If you travel much, annual travel insurance will be quite useful. It provides you with complex insurance for each journey. You face no restrictions on where to travel, how and how many times. If your trip is supposed to take longer than forty-two days, you will have to inform your insurance company beforehand.The annual travel insurance will pay you back in case you need to finish your journey earlier than you have planned. If your trip costs you more than 500 euros, the insurance company can compensate the refuse to go on a trip, but such service is not common and is negotiated separately.It would be wise to buy the annual travel insurance which provides compensations for hospital treatment and emergency costs.Also, if you have lost your travel baggage (or it was stolen), the insurance company usually pays back the cost of your possessions.Insurance companies offer a very wide range of services. For more information it is better to contact them directly.

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How to Increase Collaboration in an Organization With Google Apps

Today, employees are using Google apps to enhance their real-time communications and collaboration processes. Any person with a Google account can access Google Apps anywhere and anytime with an Internet connection.Most probably you are familiar with Gmail, but there are plenty of other Google apps for business that you may not be knowing about. These apps enable companies to heighten their productivity, communication and collaboration. The influence of these apps is expected to rise in the next two years.Let’s take a look at some of the most useful apps that can be used to enhance business collaboration:1. Better Collaboration with Less Email CutterGoogle’s Gmail for Work boasts a Priority Inbox that identifies your important incoming messages and separates them out from everything else. This will helps you to increase your efficiency by cutting down on email clutter and focusing on what is important to you. Also, the Google Apps for Business suite connects with other cloud apps to improve collaboration.Example: One example of such app is Cirrus Insight, which allows employees to manage Sales force from within Gmail, linking emails, adding contacts and updating opportunities, therefore, making sales prospecting and lead-generation processes more efficient.2. Better Collaboration with People via Chat and VideoIf you are already in your Google world, then there is no need to use separate instant messaging. Thanks to Google Hangout, now you can bring your conversations to life instantly. This app fuels the desire for seamless collaboration by allowing users to text chat live, video chat with up to 10 people and migrate between text and video. Google Hangout syncs conversations so you can keep tabs on where conversations begin and end, and also how long the conversation other people have read.3. Better Collaboration with Embedded CommunicationEmbedded communications integrates real-time communications like messaging, call routing, click-to-call, location awareness and mobility with Google Apps. Using these communication tools with Google Apps, now you can manage all your critical communications from Gmail.4. Better Collaboration on Projects with File sharingGoogle Drive for Work provides you large storage so that whenever or whenever you need any work file, you can access them. Work files can be accessed from any device and can be shared with associates and users, even with those who don’t use Google Drive. Customers can scan documents with mobile device cameras and easily convert them to PDF files.Use these Google apps to increase collaboration and communication in your organization. These apps will also helps you to increase your productivity.

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How to Build a Potent Brand? (Six Clues)

It’s just not enough to be brilliant. People must know and remember that you are. Let’s face it, walking around feeling complacent and entitled because you know you’re brilliant is not a viable strategy, right? So if you want to be known, remembered and recognized, it’s critical you build a brand that not only positions you as brilliant – but as irresistible and indispensable, too. How do you do that? You create a potent brand.Potency defined OK. Let’s start with a definition of potency here just to get us all on the same page. The word ‘potent’ means (i) power; authority, (ii) efficacy; effectiveness; strength; and (iii) the capacity to be, become, or develop; one’s potentiality; and (iv) a person or thing exerting power or influence.In other words, the more potent your brand, the more powerful, authoritative, effective, strong and influential you are. The best part? A potent brand makes it easier for your world, so to speak, find you, get to know you and then, want to engage with you (work with you, employ you, salute you, etc.) You get the idea.So how do you start building a potent brand? The world is moving at a staggeringly fast pace. It’s never been more important to get a grip on your brand’s core values, what it stands for and why it’s meaningful.It starts with asking questions. Take a look at the six clues below plus questions. See how willing you are to give your brand a leg up, as they say. It’s likely to turbo charge your thinking. It’ll then, hopefully get you moving forward – and building a brand with potency.1 Be Chief Influential Officer of your Brand• Are you poised to become the Go-To-Resource within your area of expertise Y/N?• How willing are you when it comes to getting out of your comfort zone Y/N?• Are you ready to stake out your territory in a more authoritative way Y/N?• Is your Brand Pulse showing strong, pumping and vital signs? (the last time you checked?) Y/N?• Would you describe your brand as robust and hardy Y/N?• Is the world around you noticing you’re becoming a center of influence Y/N?2 Set the Right Tone for your Brand• Are you clear about the intention behind your brand Y/N?• Are you really communicating you are who you say you are Y/N?• Is your brand’s voice clear, authentic and aligned Y/N?• Are you regularly minding your brand’s behavior Y/N?• Is your brand’s attitude welcoming, empathetic and transparent Y/N?3 Start Seeing your Brand as your Platform• How committed are you to showing up in your brand Y/N?• Would you give yourself a high score when it comes to inspiring your world Y/N?• Do you actually think about changing the world Y/N?• Are you at ease speaking confidently from your brand platform Y/N?4 Pay Close Attention to your Brand’s Emotional IQ• Would you say your brand lands a high score when it comes to empathy Y/N?• Are you aware the world around you has feelings about you and your brand Y/N?• Do you think you might be keeping your world at arm’s length Y/N?• Do you focus on actually creating strong emotional connections in your communication Y/N?5 Focus on Being 120% Authentic• Are you spending much effort on creating a consistent brand Y/N?• Do you know exactly what a congruent brand looks like (let alone feels like?) Y/N?• Would the world around you give you a high score as an authentic brand builder Y/N?• Do you know that feeling when your brand is out of alignment Y/N?(You always know when the wheels of your car are out of alignment, right?)6 Face Facts: The Money’s in the BrandNote: Potent brands are profitable. The definition of business, after all, is about profit, purchases, commerce and volume of trade.• So are you paying enough attention to what your world really needs the most Y/N?• Does your brand consistently deliver what your world is craving Y/N?• Are you willing to let your brand go to work for you Y/N?OK. How potent is your brand feeling right now? P.S. Don’t ever forget that building your brand is always a work in progress. (That’s the good news Y/N?)Author: Mary van de Wiel (aka Van) is best known for her global expertise when it comes to coaxing out the real power in brands to dramatically increase sales. Van is founder and Creative Director of She is a weekly contributor to Dan Schawbel’s Personal Branding Blog and the author of soon-to-be-published Dead Brand Walking: A Brand Therapist’s Viewpoint. Follow her on Twitter @maryvandewiel

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