Most of the work we do is planning. The future is uncertain and unpredictable. That’s where it’s hard to do much more than plan for the next 6 to 12 months. Why?



Moving forward, the same tools that employees are currently using to work in a virtual environment will be used to assess the contributions that employees are making. For example, during virtual meetings, new technologies will be able to provide background information about the other people on the call. By knowing more about who is on the call, participants will be able to focus on the issues that are of the most importance to them.

What is going on with Aryna Sabalenka? The world No. 2 had a breakthrough 2021, reaching the semifinals at both Wimbledon and the US Open. But she appears to have a case of the yips when it comes to her once-powerful serve. In the two matches she played leading into the Australian Open -- both losses -- she had a combined 39 double faults. In her first-round loss in Sydney earlier this week to Rebecca Peterson, she was in tears during the match and even resorted to using an underhand motion in the final two sets. Will she be able to figure out what's ailing her in time for the year's first major? (Source: www.espn.com)



Garbine Muguruza: The two-time major champion finished 2021 with the title at the WTA Finals and is ranked No. 3 entering the season's first major. Muguruza, 28, went 1-1 this week in Sydney, her lone warm-up tournament. She reached the final in Melbourne in 2020 (as well as the final at a Melbourne 500 event last year) so she obviously knows how to win on the grounds.

Of course, Raducanu isn't the only teen phenom in the draw. Leylah Fernandez, whom she played in the US Open final, and Carlos Alcaraz will also be looking to continue the momentum they started in New York, and lest we forget, there's 17-year-old Coco Gauff, who reached the fourth round in Melbourne in 2020 and the quarterfinals in Paris in 2021. Gauff made the US Open doubles final with partner Caty McNally, now 20, and the duo -- known collectively as #McCoco -- will try to replicate that success Down Under. (Source: www.espn.com)



Data also shows that in a hybrid world, women and people of color prefer to work from home compared to white men. Given that, without intervention, gender wage gaps will widen and the degree of diversity within leadership benches will weaken. Without greater intentionality, underrepresented talent could be excluded from critical conversations, career opportunities and other networks that drive career growth.

Other notables not making the trip this year include reigning Australian Open finalist Jen Brady, 2020 US Open champion Dominic Thiem, former world No. 1 and reigning Wimbledon finalist Karolina Pliskova, 2019 US Open champion Bianca Andreescu and 2021 Australian Open semifinalist Karolina Muchova (leaving Osaka as the only women's semifinalist from the 2021 tournament to be in the draw this year). All cited injuries or their mental health as the reason for their withdrawal. (Source: www.espn.com)


Can Sofia Kenin bounce back at the site of her biggest career achievement? The 23-year-old American won the 2020 title at the Australian Open shortly before the season was suspended due to COVID-19. She reached the delayed French Open final when play returned in the fall but struggled in 2021, needing an emergency surgery to remove her appendix in Melbourne and firing -- and then rehiring -- her coach (and father) Alex. Will she get back on track at the Australian Open? She'll have to get past fellow American Madison Keys, a former Australian Open semifinalist, in her opener. (Source: www.espn.com)

While Barty has two major singles titles to her name, this one would perhaps be the most special if she were to win. The 25-year-old would become the first Australian to win a singles title since Chris O'Neil in 1978. Make no mistake, it's a lot of pressure, even on the typically unflappable Barty, as she has to contend with the expectations of a nation and all the attention that comes with it. Other former top Aussie players, like Lleyton Hewitt, Pat Rafter and Sam Stosur, were able to win Slam singles titles elsewhere but could never get it done on home soil. (Source: www.espn.com)

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