Drawing the line on tips: Where does it end?

October 17, 2016 - by: Dan Oswald 10 COMMENTS

by Dan Oswald

Employee compensation is a complicated issue that can stir passion in people. Recently, the now-former CEO of Wells Fargo was taken to task by Congress for his company’s compensation practices, which many believe contributed to widespread fraud on the part of bank employees.  tips are greatly appreciated

There are no easy answers when it comes to compensation. But there is a relatively recent trend in compensation that has me irritated. I need to get this off my chest, so I’m choosing you to hear my complaint.

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6 important ways to avoid playing the blame game

November 16, 2015 - by: Dan Oswald 2 COMMENTS

Blameby Dan Oswald

When the going gets tough, how long does it take for someone to ask, “Who’s to blame for this mess?” Unfortunately, the answer is not very long. We live in a world in which everyone wants to place blame.

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Only compromise will pull us from cliff’s edge

December 20, 2012 - by: Dan Oswald 1 COMMENTS

by Dan Oswald

Have you ever been in a meeting where two executives face off, each on the opposite side of a critical issue? You watch the debate like you would a tennis match, with each participant knocking the issue back to the other side. As they volley back and forth, the debate picks up in intensity, and neither side will back down. Suddenly it’s no longer about the issue and what’s best for the business; each executive just wants to win. To hell with compromise—it’s all or nothing!

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Lack of trust was the main ingredient in Hostess’ demise

December 03, 2012 - by: Dan Oswald 0 COMMENTS

by Dan Oswald

It’s a sad day for me. Hostess Brands, the maker of Twinkies, Ho-Hos, and Ding Dongs, is going out of business. While my midsection may not look like it, I haven’t had a Twinkie—or any other Hostess product, for that matter—in more than 30 years. But I hate to see them go. Twinkies were a part of my childhood. Somehow, on occasion, we could convince my mother to pick up a box of those golden treats with absolutely zero nutritional value. That was no small feat! My mother refused to buy any form of sugared cereal, but every once in a while, we could coax her into buying a box of Twinkies.

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The ultimate leadership challenge

November 07, 2012 - by: Dan Oswald 2 COMMENTS

by Dan Oswald

The day after the 2012 presidential election, a colleague forwarded to me an interview with Michael Siegel, the author of The President as Leader. The interview was conducted by the Washington Post’s Tom Fox and centered around the top attributes of a great leader.

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Where’s the Jobs?

February 26, 2010 - by: Dan Oswald 0 COMMENTS

Remember, the “Where’s the beef?” commercials Wendy’s restaurants began running in 1984? The advertising slogan soon became a catch phrase anytime someone wanted to question the substance of an idea or product.

It seems to me, with apologies to my middle school English teacher, “Where’s the jobs?” is an appropriate slogan for the current, so-called economic recovery. Economists have been telling us for months that the economy is growing again, albeit at a relatively slow pace. We’ve seen some modest improvements in the number of new jobless claims — that is, until recent weeks. It seems that the new jobless claims rose to 496,000 last week and that the unemployment rate is once again creeping into double-digit territory.

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Happy Anniversary, Mr. President

January 20, 2010 - by: Dan Oswald 8 COMMENTS

Today marks the one-year anniversary of President Obama’s Inaugural, and my guess is that he’s not doing a lot of celebrating. That’s because yesterday, in a special Senate election to fill the late Ted Kennedy’s seat, Massachusetts voters elected a Republican to represent them.

President Obama and Democrats across the country must be asking themselves and each other, “How did this happen?”

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It’s the Customer, Stupid

November 06, 2009 - by: Dan Oswald 0 COMMENTS

It’s hard to believe but 2009 is coming to an end. For many, 2009 can’t be over soon enough. For most businesses, it has been a challenging year. And while we’ve seen a rebound in the stock market, most companies are reporting earnings that, while they beat analysts’ estimates, are still significantly less than they were a year ago.

Many companies report their results on a calendar year, which means they’re in the middle or just wrapping up their budgeting process for 2010. So, as you look into your crystal ball, what are you predicting for the year ahead? Do you see an economic recovery?  What about the so-called “jobless recovery”? How will an economic recovery that doesn’t include jobs affect your business? Will things get better in the first quarter or the fourth? When will corporate spending return, since so many companies are beating earnings estimates by cutting costs?

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Surviving the Recession: How to Cope with Tough Times

July 16, 2009 - by: Dan Oswald 0 COMMENTS

All right, I’m officially over the recession. I’m tired of reading, writing, thinking, and talking about it. Most of all I’m tired of having to deal with it every day in our business. I long for the good ol’ days. For our industry — publishing — that was the go-go ’90s. But at this point I’d settle for anything pre-2008. But for some reason, even though I’m tired of it, the recession is undaunted by my feelings. It continues to rage on, taking its toll on all of us.

No one is exempt. Earlier this year Challenger, Gray, & Christmas, an executive recruiting firm, released data that showed 1,484 CEOs left the corner office in 2008. That number was the most since Challenger began the survey a decade earlier. Of course, some of the executives retired, others just walked away, and many were shown the door because of the poor performance of the companies they led. But it’s no coincidence that a record number of CEOs exited the corner office during the worst economic downturn since World War II.  No one in the current workforce has ever managed through anything like it. It’s not easy, and it’s not fun.

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Do Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures?

July 10, 2009 - by: Dan Oswald 0 COMMENTS

Is anyone else concerned about the decisions being made by companies during the current economic crisis?  Let me rephrase that. Is anyone else concerned about the decisions being made by the PEOPLE inside some companies during the economic crisis?

Let’s face it, people make decisions. The decisions may be made on behalf of an organization, but they’re still made by individuals acting alone or as a group.  And, frankly, I’ve got big questions about some of the decisions being made.

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