• “WORKPLACE BOUNDARIES ARE EXPANDING DEEPER INTO EMPLOYEES’ LIVES, especially now that mobile technology is taken for granted… Afterhours intrusions have now become routine…with emails or calls while commuting, shopping, or sitting down to dinner.” A recent survey indicates 42% of employees report afterhours work- related communication including weekends, and another 9% have bosses who “expect them to deal with the latest corporate crisis” while on vacation. Managers are often unrealistic about staff workload, or simply ignore respect for others’ schedules – especially if the top-down culture is 24/7 micromanagement. [CGMA MAGAZINE – July 4, 13]
  • SUCCESSION PLANNING IS NOT A ONE-SHOT DEAL. It’s a dynamic process which requires consistent reality- check and adaptation to always-changing facts and circumstances. Effective succession planning needs alignment with the strategic goals for planned exit of key employees, as well as risk-management programs for unplanned exit (including as a result of crisis or disaster), and also requires “consultation with potential successors, to validate assump- tions about their ambitions – especially younger generations.” DCG has decades of experience in developing effective succession and/or exit plans. Failing to plan ahead is, by default, planning to fail. [INTERCHANGE GROUP LTR – July 8, 13]
  • “FINANCIAL RATINGS AGENCIES ARE THE GLUE that ostensibly holds the financial industry together…by helping define what’s safe to buy and what isn’t… Moodys or S & P ‘ratings’ are supposed to be sacrosanct and inviolable.” But reality is that, according to reams of documents and a $225 million lawsuit settlement, these firms colluded with America’s biggest mortgage banks “to sell near-worthless loans as AAA-rated securities…in a fraud that led to implosion of the world economy.” E-mails between execs included comments like: “Lord help our fu**ing scam… Let’s hope we are all wealthy and retired by the time this house of cards falters.” Why did this happen? Money. Ratings agencies used to be compensated by investor subscriptions but, “over time, that model morphed into an ‘issuer pays’ model – i.e. by the ‘product’ company, an equivalent situation to “one of the parties in court paying the judge’s salary.” This is the model currently still in use, even though execs have admitted that they “shaded ratings methodologies to protect market share.” But, as with big bankers, no one has been prosecuted. Business as usual. [ROLLINGSTONE – July 4, 13]
  • “MODERATE COFFEE CONSUMPTION OFFERS POWERFUL PROTECTION against heart failure and stroke” accord- ing to all sorts of current research studies. “Drinking 5 cups daily has been found to reduce stroke risk by 36%… A study of nearly sixty thousand people over nineteen years found that women who consumed two cups daily were protected by up to 25% against dying from cardiovascular disease… Type II diabetics who consumed 5 cups daily were nearly a third less likely to die from any causes… 3 cups daily revealed decrease in risk of endometrial cancer by over 60% and risk of liver cancer (in high-risk hepatitis patients) of up to 40%… Studies also showed lowered risk of Parkinson’s by 75% and of Alzheimer’s or general cognitive decline by over 50%. Caffeine can sometimes increase blood pressure and heart rate, but new studies support coffee’s health-giving benefits further including reduced risk for developing diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases. “Protect yourself from the ravages of aging.” [LIFE EXTENSION – Aug 13]
  • NO GREAT SURPRISE THAT HUMANS SHARE 90% OF OUR GENES WITH CHIMPANZEES, 88% with mice, and around 85% with dogs, cows & horses. But who knew that we also have 24% in common with rice & wine grapes, 38% with worms, 47% with fruit-flies, and 65% similarity to chickens. Shared genes are obviously utilized differently – in the same way a string instrument can play Brahms or ZZTop – but “every lineage descended from an ancestor some 1.6 billion years ago, and retains a percentage from that progenitor.” [NAT’L GEOGRAPHIC – July 13]
  • TRUE ARTISTIC CREATIVITY does blossom every so often. ShadowDancing: http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=CvQBUccxBr4

    There are worse things than getting a call for a wrong number at 4 a.m… like, it could be the right number.

    “According to the Daily Treasury Statement released July 12, the federal debt that is currently subject to a legal limit of $16,699,421,095,673.60 had stood at exactly $16,699,396,000,000 for 56 straight days – ostensibly $25 million below.