During my project management program last week, I could tell by the managers’ questions that the company’s profits were in trouble. What’s the connection?  Problems at the front line show up in the bottom line.  Manage the first, and you can count on the second to fall within range.  If not, then you can see trouble coming. The first question sounded like a “different cultures” issue.  Vendor personnel in another country promised to meet the deadlines, but then didn’t for one reason or another.  They required more time to get the work done. On a time-and-materials contract, more time meant

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The American middle class is going to be invaded or assaulted on three fronts that will trash their standard of living. The first is rapidly rising oil and fuel prices. If the U.S. government wants to debase their dollar to be trade competitive, then the bill we pay is for oil (which is priced in $) to rise in price. The second assault also follows from above. Many farm commodity prices are now rising faster than oil in value. This is especially true for corn future prices. Corn is especially important because it is a feedstock for many of the

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All trends come to an end.  As opposed to financial events, financial trends have a life of their own and go to an extreme and then reverse.  We are witnessing this now not only in the United States but also in the major western economies. The dominate theme in both economic and financial fields is reversion to the mean. This is what is now taking place in the U.S.  The U.S. economy is now going through a long and painful process of deleveraging.  Total borrowing peaked-out in the first quarter of 2008 at 136% of personal after tax income. It

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From Brokenness to Openness

Posted by Al0703 on January 01, 2000
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Category : Blog, Christian Tactics in Business

What do you do when you reach the end of your rope?  Who do you turn to when your family and friends turn their backs on you when you are down to your last few dollars in finances?  What happens when you feel like not even God hears your prayers?  What do you say when you feel like you are in a place of hopelessness and brokenness and feel the darkness creeping in on you from every direction?   I don’t know about you but a situation like this has happened to me more than once in my lifetime. I

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Keep Them Coming Back

Posted by Shantarra Houston on January 01, 2000
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Category : Blog, Customer Service

It’s the official first day of the Sweet 16 for college basketball and many fans will be attending numerous game events at homes and restaurants. During a time like this, fans just want to enjoy the games, eat lots of delicious food, and oh yeah have fun. Nothing can spoil fun gatherings such as these, except awful customer service at restaurants. For many fans, it is a tradition to gather at local restaurants to watch multiple games at one time. The attitudes of restaurant employees can encourage fans to come back or never return. As a restaurant owner, it is pertinent

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No one wants to talk about… BUT it’s there! Grief in the workplace, that heavy thing that fills up the air, that is always around a “cubbie” or a “nook” and appears from no where. As I travel across the country, doing keynotes, seminars and most recently talking to Professional Caregivers, I am amazed at the number of folks who talk about grief in the workplace. Those who are working and just living their lives when all of a sudden the office becomes ever so quiet you can hear a pin drop on a carpeted floor, then the cry of

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The most powerful weapon most overlooked in fighting both failure and success with any endeavor is  habit. The dictionary definition of habit is “An acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary.” Norman Vincent Peale described it this way, “Repetition of the same thought or physical action develops into a habit which, repeated frequently enough, becomes an automatic reflex.” Someone once said, “We first make our habits, then they make us.” It has also been said that the best way to predict your future is to create it. There is no more powerful guarantee of future success

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In the past few years we’ve seen celebrity meltdowns that have dearly cost recording, motion picture, and television industry businesses, advertisers, sports franchises, celebrity agents, etc., which were riding on the celebrity of these stars. Isn’t it time for all these celebrity-associated enterprises to become proactive and mitigate the huge risks they take? As we’ve seen, just one wrong-doing by one renowned celebrity can cost these organizations a giant dent in their reputation, not to mention the loss of millions of dollars in expected revenue. Here are some practical ideas for mitigating such risks. • Write a morality clause into

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Leadership By Default

Posted by temp-admin on January 01, 2000
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Category : Blog, Leadership

Sometimes people are leaders by default. They could be international, national, regional, or local celebrities who have become well known because of newsworthy good which they have accomplished, whether in government, sports, the motion picture industry, business, etc. Many times these people do not even think of themselves as leaders, especially early on in their career or activity that brings them notoriety. In being a leader default, one of the challenges is to always think and act like a leader, on or off the job. Because, whether you like it or not, you have become a role model. The most

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About one week ago I was talking with my friend Jesse (who is a West Point graduate and now semi-retired after a very successful business career).  We spoke about the lack of effective leadership in this country, more specifically about the lack of true servant leaders.  A servant leader is one who helps the members of his/her team to reach their full potential and therefore perform at their best for the organization.  This concept of servant leadership was developed by Robert K. Greenleaf in his book titled “Servant Leadership”. A servant leader is not a “me first” leader. Let me

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