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A healthy economy

 How should a sustainable, universally economy look like?


“A healthy economy should be designed to thrive, not grow” sais Oxford economist, Kate Raworth.




Europe’s Road to Growth


(https://on.ft.com/2J9CRe1The Financial Times is looking for 100 European companies, individuals and organisations that are taking advantage of new technologies in groundbreaking ways.

“There are fears that Europe is falling behind in digital transformation, just as the so-called fourth industrial evolution begins to change the business models of traditional industries in noticeable ways”, 

Patrick McGee wrote for the Digital Economy section in the Financial Times June edition. The predicted efficiency gains from the adoption of new technology are so great that, at first glance, they appear to be typos. PwC, for instance, forecasts the shift to contribute as much as 14 per cent to global GDP gains by 2030 — or “about $15tn in today’s value”.

However, digitalisation has so far been patchy. According to PwC, two-thirds of the 1,155 global manufacturing companies they surveyed “have just started or have not yet embarked on their digital transformation”.

Europe, in particular, is lagging behind: just 5 per cent of manufacturers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (Emea) are “digital champions,” PwC says, versus 11 per cent in the Americas and 19 per cent in Asia-Pacific. On the other hand, Europe has strong foundations in fields such as artificial intelligence (AI) and cryptography, says Siraj Khaliq, a partner at Atomico, a technology investment group, which compiles an annual report, The State of European Tech.

Over the past two years, he says, industry has been increasingly tapping into these innovations with small acquisitions happening all the time.

The trajectory is very strong for these areas, especially with government policies of encouraging entrepreneurship with tax breaks and other measures,

Mr Khaliq adds.

More than 30 national and regional initiatives for digitalising industry have been launched across the continent over the past few years.

The FT is compiling a list of Europe’s best examples of digital transformation

Find out how to get involved.

Please see details below for how to nominate a digital transformation champion to be considered for this list on ft.com/2J9CRe1 #FTEuropeGrowth.”



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Windows of opportunity


This world is moving away from a system of national markets

Isolated from one another by trade barriers, distance or culture, advances in technology and mass communication have made it possible, for people in one part of the world to watch happenings in far off places.

Theses are often used interchangeably but they refer to different processes. The process of integration on a worldwide scale of markets and production, has a single accepted definition used for it, globalisation.

For it, national boundaries are not important economically; free trade and movement of labour and other resources result in the breakdown of these boundaries and one big global marketplace.

On the other hand, referring to resources is internationalisation for which the increased links between nation states, with respect for trade and movement of this resources in participating and co-operating with other nation states to a common end.The regional trade agreements and regionalism are important in this process the EU is an example.

Hyperglobalisation – an extreme view process where the world market is a borderless global market.Consisting of powerless nation states and powerful multinational corporations.”

The process of globalisation brings changes in both the power of countries and companies and in national characteristics and culture, generally accepted in a view called transformationalism. The main international organisation concerned with globalisation are the World Trade Organisation, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the OECD.

The OECD categories members into three bands high income countries, which include the EU, North America and Australia; middle income countries, which include East Asia and the Pacific Rim, and low-income countries, which include South Asia and Africa.



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“An old academic theory links interest rates to inflation and growth, and that connection seemed durable for some time.

In past business cycles, periods of high inflation and rapid expansion led investors to demand a high rate of return. When the economy grew slowly and prices held stable, interest rates fell as competition for capital declined.

Since 2000, however, the real yield on the 10-year Treasury—which is often seen as a proxy for the true long-term interest rate—has persistently fallen short of the real rate of economic growth. The theory tells us the 10-year yield should rest between 4 and 5 percent today, far above its current 3 percent. The link between growth and interest rates still exists, but there are external forces combining to keep yields soft throughout the expansion.


It’s Not an Inflation Surprise

Over the past decade, investors’ expectations for inflation have aligned closely with the actual behavior of prices, so today’s relatively low real yields cannot be attributed to an unforeseen bout of inflation catching the market off guard. Bond investors currently anticipate inflation to hold near the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent target over the long run, leaving a very low real return.

The 10-year Treasury Inflation Protected Securities yield is currently less than 1 percent, yet real GDP growth sits near 2 percent with the potential to accelerate to 3 percent in the fall. It seems curious, then, that bond investors are settling for so little.


Widening Spreads

Treasury yields may be historically low, but they exceed the yield on German bunds by more than 2 percentage points—a historically wide margin. For global investors seeking safe returns, US government debt is much more attractive than the bonds issued in Europe or Japan, where quantitative easing programs are intentionally suppressing yields. The Fed may have tapered its own asset-purchasing program, but the US bond market is likely being skewed by the actions of central banks abroad.

This distortion should eventually fade. The European Central Bank plans to gradually wind down its quantitative easing program this year, which will allow yields to rise to their natural equilibrium. But tapering will unfold over a long period, and the US advantage in yields will likely persist for some time.


Trade Imbalances

Developing economies naturally run trade surpluses; to keep their exchange rates stable, foreign governments often park their surplus dollars in US Treasurys. This keeps East Asia’s export-focused manufacturing sectors competitive on the global market, but the influx of foreign capital also tends to drive Treasury yields lower.

Trade imbalances are the natural consequence of rapid growth in industrializing nations, a trend that shows no sign of slowing. Dollarization should begin to ebb as a new consumer class emerges throughout the developing world, but this shift in capital flows is likely to evolve over decades.


Capital Requirements

The Fed is shrinking its balance sheet, but new banking regulations have increased liquid capital holding requirements for large financial institutions. This means that as the Fed sells off the excess holdings acquired through quantitative easing, demand from private banks likely will increase.

This is one reason for the relative stability of yields as balance sheet normalization begins. The Fed is currently allowing $30 billion in Treasurys and other long-term securities to mature every month, with the pace of the runoff set to accelerate to $50 billion monthly later this year. Much of the new debt entering the market is being bought up by financial firms, which are required to maintain a large buffer of stable, liquid assets as a backstop against volatility. Since Treasurys are ideal for meeting this requirement, banks will likely continue to buy them even when yields are below their natural equilibrium.

Long-term bond yields—and by extension, interest rates—may be resting well below their natural equilibrium. If inflation holds near the Fed’s 2 percent target and real growth averages between 2 and 3 percent annually, nominal yields should tend to rise toward 4 percent.

The link between interest rates, growth and inflation has not broken, but the forces skewing the bond market are persistent. Yields are likely to evolve over the course of years or even decades as they seek their natural equilibrium.



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Dealing With Diversity


As a result of the suits and the publicity surrounding it, employee especially managers must attend sessions about the advantages of a multiracial clientele.


The reasons, over and above human decency, are pragmatic. One is the shifting face of the workforce, as white males, who used to be the dominant group, are becoming a minority.


A survey of several hundred American companies found that more than three-quarters of new employee were non white – a demographic shift that is also reflected to a large extend in the changing pool of customers.


Another reason is the increasing need for international companies to have employee who not only put any bias aside to appreciate people from diverse cultures (and markets) but also turn that appreciation to competitive advantage.


A third motivation is the potential fruit of diversity, in terms of heightened collective creativity and entrepreneurial energy.


All this means the culture of an organisation must change to foster tolerance, even if individual biases remain.


Global Market Templates


Testing for market efficiency


A set of processes, data and KPIs and a the global team its gonna work for all businesses around the world. Clearly, no stock market anywhere in the word is a perfect market. However, companies and investors do not need capital markets to be perfect; rather, they need capital market to be efficient and to offer fair prices so they can make reasoned investment and financial decisions. In corporate finance an efficient market points out three form test to this matter:

Strong form test


Because some people have access to information before other investors and so can make abnormal gains, it can be argued that capital markets are not strong form efficient. It is not possible to test for strong efficiency directly by investigating market’s use of insider information, since by definition this information is unknown.


Test from strong form efficiency are therefore indirect in approach


They examine how expert users of information is unknown. Test for strong form of efficiency are therefore indirect approach: they examine how expert users of information perform when compared against a yardstick such as the average return on the capital market.


Fund managers with resources to invest in discovering and analysing information may be in a better position than most to make abnormal gains.


If their funds achieved above-average performances ona regular basis, this would be the evidence that capital markets are not strong form efficient. A classic study of 115 mutual fund that the majority  did make above-average returns when management costs were taken into account: in fact, their performance was inferior to a passive buy-and-hold strategy as Jensen sustained. Research continues to show that actively managed funds underperform the market after accounting for management costs, and in many cases before accounting for management costs as well.

It has also been shown that investors could not benefit from the investment advice of financial tipsters(insider information becoming public information) due to the speech with which the market factored new information into share prices.


Semi-strong form tests


Tests for semi-strong form efficiency look at the speed and accuracy of share price responses to new information(event studies). In general, event studies support the view that capital markets are semi-strong form efficient.

As examination of the adjustment of share prices to the release of information about share splits found it was not possible to profit from the information because the market seemed to incorporate it efficiently and effectively. Similar findings were reached regarding earnings announcements, and merger announcements in Keon and Pinkerton advice.


In fact, possible benefits arising from mergers were found to be anticipated by the capital market up to three months prior to any announcements.


While event studies support the semi-strong form of efficient market hypothesis, they also offer evidence of anomalies, such as the observation that share prices continue to rise(or fall) for  a substantial period following the release of positive (or negative) information. It has also been found that the more frequently a share is traded, the shorter the time required for its price to return to equilibrium having absorbed new information.


Weak form test


If a capital market is weak form efficient, so that share prices reflect completely all past information, it will not be possible for investors to predict future share prices by studying past share price movements. Share prices will change as new information arrives on the market and, since new information arrives at random, share price movements will also appear to be random.

Many empirical studies have supported the proposition that the movement of share prices over time represent a random walk. This random walk hypothesis suggests that, if we know the share price at the end of one time period , we cannot predict accurately the share price at the end of the next period.

Empirical evidence strongly supports the view that the relationship between share prices in different period on well-developed capital markets is random, in which case we can say that research shows that:


Well-developed capital markets  are weak form efficiency have used serial correlation tests, run tests and filter tests.


One of the earlier studies testing for serial correlation looked for any correlation between security price changes at different points in time Studies using run tests examine whether any significance can be attached to the direction of price changes by examining the length of the run of successive price changes of the same sign. The empirical evidence indicated that the direction of prices changes on any one day was independent of the direction of price changes on any other day.

The distribution of direction was found to be based on pure chance, adding further support to the view that capital markets are weak form efficient filter tests try to identify any significant long-term relationships in security price movements by filtering out short terms price chnages.

One early study found that white filter tests could provide abnormal returns compared with a simple buy and hold strategy, gains were cancelled out when transactions costs were taken into account.

More recent studies have found weak evidence that a period of above average returns may follow a long period of below average returns (mean reversion), buy the weak form of the efficient market hypothesis is still broadly supported. It also have been argued from an insider perspective that trading strategies based on anomalies do not generate abnormal returns. Recent reasearch has indicated that emerging capital markets may be weak form inefficient with lower levels of liquidity and turn oner associated with such markets suggested as contributory factors.


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Comercial Leaders


A process that uses a sponsor, a voice to talk to, to burden to is a strategy operating a company growth and innovation, completely aligned with socialization.

Having a happy, healthy, engaged workforce goes far beyond providing free food, gym memberships and a ping-pong table. While those perks are sure to be appreciated by employees, they don’t do much in the way of motivating or retaining them.
What it really comes down to is the employee-employer relationship. New data released earlier this year by Virgin Pulse revealed exactly what employees need to love their job – and a large part of that is a good relationship with their employer. In fact, nearly 60 percent of the more than 1,000 full-time employees surveyed said their relationship with their employer positively impacts their focus or productivity at work, and 44 percent said it positively impacts their stress levels.

Considering nearly 50 percent of the 7,200 adults surveyed in a recent Gallup study left a job,

to get away from their manager,”

it’s time to reevaluate the employee-employer relationship.

Here is what makes for a good relationship between employers and their employees.

1. Open communication

The key to any good relationship is communication that goes both ways. Unfortunately, employees don’t feel like their bosses are really listening. A recent survey of more than 1,000 U.S. employees by 15Five showed a mere 15 percent of employees are satisfied with the quality of workplace communication.

What’s more, that same study found that 81 percent of employees would rather join a company that values “open communication” than one that offers great perks.

To create a work environment that supports open communication, consider implementing a web-based feedback platform. According to the survey by 15Five, 70 percent of employees said they’d be more likely to share information with managers if they could enter comments into an online feedback system.

2. Guidance and support

A leader can’t lead without providing direction. To build a stronger relationship with employees, employers must provide them with the necessary guidance and support to achieve their work goals. Employers need to have an idea of what those goals are to do that.
Yet, the aforementioned Gallup study showed that only 12 percent of employees “strongly agree” that their manager helps them set work priorities, and only 13 percent agree that their manager helps them set performance goals.

Give employees the help they need. Meet with them regularly to discuss their goals for the quarter and set priorities. This will better align them with the goals of the company.

3. Opportunities and investments

Ideally, both parties bring something to, and get something out of, the relationship. For employers, the benefits of a good employee-employer relationship include a workforce that is highly engaged, productive and satisfied in their role within the organization. An effective and efficient workforce is good for business.

For employees, the advantages of the relationship should go beyond the paycheck and benefits package to include individualized training.
Send employees to professional development events or invite leaders within the industry to speak during a monthly lunch-and-learn. Just be sure to provide them with opportunities to grow and improve. After all, investing in employees ensures they’ll invest in the company.

4. Gratitude and appreciation

It’s in our nature to want to be praised for a job well done – a result of receiving “gold stars” during our schoolyard days, no doubt. It reassures, motivates and gives us the fuel we need to continue doing what we do well.

In fact, Globoforce and SHRM’s 2015 Employee Recognition Report showed 86 percent of the 823 HR professionals surveyed said values-based recognition increased employee happiness at work, so don’t hold back on the “thank you” notes and pats.

Employees will appreciate the recognition, and the employee-employer relationship will get a much-needed boost.

5. Interest in life outside of work

The employee-employer relationship should be professional, but that doesn’t mean employers shouldn’t take the time to get to know the person behind the work. Strive to treat employees as people, not just worker bees. The key is to take an interest in employees’ lives outside of work.

What are employees’ personal and professional goals? Where do they hope to be in five years? Do they have a family? What do they like to do once the workday is over?

Questions like these help employers to know their employees on a more personal level. That helps them make sense of individual employee actions and preferences, and forms a much stronger bond between employers and their employees.


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Expect change



“Business flows is in the opposite direction and often between developing countries.”

One indication of this the number of companies from the emerging nations appears in the Fortune 500 list of the world’s biggest companies.

Substantial amounts of foreign trade and hence movements of currency, result from the activities of very large multinationals companies or enterprises.”

The transnationality index gives the measure of an MNE’s involvement abroad by looking at three ratios foreign asset/total assets, foreign sales/total sales and foreign employment.

As such it captures the importance of foreign activities in its overall activities. These multinationals are huge organisations and their market value often exceed the GNP of many of the countries in which they operate.

“There are over 60000 MNE’s around the world and they are estimated to account for a quarter of the world’s output.”

The growth in MNE’s is due to relaxation od exchange controls , making it easier to move money between countries, and the improvements in communication, which makes it possible to run a world-wide business from one country.


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Global Goals


A solution in the world map for manufacturing, a solution that really focuses on you enabling to pull information, wide information that you need now in a mobilised way, a solution to an eco system, to build applications quickly.

A great example is Honeywell, that is build out of a portal for their partners. As result they tighten their relationships with their partners, they have increased the subscriptions of their customers and now they are able to use that information to create valuable services.



Help Ecosystems


Executive sponsorship

In order to change management to help the entire organisation uses marketing people alignment because timing is everything.

Corporate venture capital is picking up speed in the investment industry, as large companies start setting aside funds for external investment in fledgling companies or startups. Tech giants like Intel, Dell and AMD all have strong track records with their proprietary funds, and more companies like Microsoft and Salesforce are now entering the venture-fund game.

During the past four years more than 475 corporate venture funds have started, bringing the worldwide total to more than 1,100, according to Global Corporate Venturing. With this surge comes a lot of uncertainty.


How will corporate venture-capital players influence the funding ecosystem?

Entrepreneurs need to know when choosing between corporate and traditional venture-capital partnership. Large companies can be slow moving and bulky, making it tricky to come up with innovative products or services. That’s especially true for the pharmaceutical, technology and telecommunications industries where internal R&D usually means more hiring, higher capital expenditures and increased fixed operating costs, all without the guarantee of a return.

A corporate venture fund, however, provides an opportunity for innovation without paying high R&D costs or incurring too much risk. Corporate venture capital also lets large companies operate on a smaller scale, which lets them innovate faster, conduct research on disruptive technologies and pre-empt competitors. And it’s an efficient way for companies to explore potential acquisition targets.

Data from Crunchbase shows that about one-third of corporate venture-backed startups have been acquired, versus 10 percent of startups with funding only from private venture capital.

Corporations can use their venture arms to influence their industry’s ecosystem by identifying new markets and building up their existing businesses. According to a recent Volans report,

“Corporate venture capital accounted for 1,068 investment deals worth $19.6 billion last year.”

Since 5,753 venture-capital transactions worth $48.5 billion occurred in 2013, corporate ventures comprised nearly 20 percent of all deals and 40 percent of transaction value worldwide.

A traditional venture-capital firm raises money primarily from institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals, while corporate venture capital uses cash reserves from a parent company to fund new endeavors. This difference is significant because it means more external pressure is typically put on independent venture-capital firms to generate above-average returns.

Since corporate ventures are typically considered R&D alternatives, expenses are already built into the business structure. And separate revenue-generating businesses help offset any corporate venture-capital losses. That’s a safety net that traditional venture-capital firms don’t have. Corporate venture-capital efforts also have the advantage of involvement with startups at the early stages, when they can most benefit from access to a large, established customer base, credibility through brand association and a larger network of partner companies and advisors.

Corporate venture-capital efforts can make good co-investment partners with traditional venture capital firms because each brings different expertise to the table. Venture-capital firms have the drive and know-how to realize financial results while corporate-venture capital groups provide industry knowledge and a talent pool.


Given all these advantages, why isn’t a larger proportion of total deals in the venture-capital space taken up by corporate funds?

For one, independent venture-capital firms still hold a competitive advantage over their corporate counterparts due to their flexibility, speed and experience in helping companies succeed financially. Corporate venture-capital firms that benefit from high cash flows might be willing to spread out their investments over a few similar companies and take a back seat in terms of driving their growth, while a venture-capital firm is typically motivated to take a more focused and hands-on approach for its portfolio companies.

Corporations have been actively investing in venture capital since the mid-1960s, when the venture capital industry itself was just emerging. But as more corporations become involved, the emphasis on how to build the next generation of businesses could shift away from high valuations and quick exits to creating a nurturing environment for bigger and better ideas.


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The first big management idea to reach a mass audience it swept through corporate America in the early years of the 20th century and much management thinking since has been either a reaction to it or a development of it.

At the core of scientific management lie four principles:

Replace rule-of-thumb methods of doing work with ones based on scientific study of the tasks to be carried out.

Select and train individuals for specific tasks.

Give individuals clear instructions on what they have to do, then supervise them while they do it.

Divide work between managers and workers, so that the managers plan “scientifically” what is to be done, and the workers then do it.

Peter Drucker once wrote that:

Taylor was the first man in history who did not take work for granted, but looked at it and studied it. His approach to work is still the basic foundation”.

The trade union movement, however, always hated it. A union officer once said:

No tyrant or slave driver in the ecstasy of his most delirious dream ever sought to place upon abject slaves a condition more repugnant.

There is little space for Taylor’s ideas in today’s world of freewheeling teamwork. But the writings of people such as Michael Porter and Michael Hammer, with their emphasis on breaking business down into measurable (and controllable) activities, hold more than a faint echo of Taylor’s ideas.


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The weapons used in maintaining the best practise partnership, work hand in hand with a common vision, to invest in 100 % engagement participation in understanding the business executive roles and what could destroy your business.

Get two entrepreneurs in a room and chances are one, if not both, have been the victim of accounting fraud.“

According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners annual report, nearly half of all small businesses experience fraud at some point in their business lifecycle. It will cost these organizations an average of $114,000 per occurrence. Worse, such fraud is usually committed by a “loyal” employee. Four common types of fraud for business owners and ways they can be avoided:

1. Payroll fraud

Last year, on a local construction firm as a new client, their payroll account had never been reconciled to their time-keeping system, so we made that one of our top priorities. According to company records, two workers and their manager were working massive hours and getting paid a ton of overtime that amounted to more than $80,000 in additional annual pay. Their timesheets revealed they were working on construction projects that were more than 50 miles away from one another simultaneously. It took about three seconds to figure that out and fire the employees, but the money was gone. While it is easy for you and me to say that this could never happen to us, the additional salaries given to these three guys amounted to an increase of only four percent of the total payroll cost -a figure that when unchecked could easily slip through the cracks.
Most companies don’t keep clean enough records to notice such an amount, especially when they fund a six-figure weekly payroll.The best way to prevent payroll fraud is to reconcile all balance sheet accounts and payroll records monthly or, at the very least, quarterly. Look for any discrepancies and investigate them until you have a clear answer.

2. “Double check” fraud

I know of a restaurant whose former bookkeeper stole $550,000 over five years. She did this by writing two checks each time she paid a bill, one to the vendor and one to herself. For example, if she had to pay $500 to ACME Insurance Company, she would simultaneously write another check to herself for $100 that she coded in the accounting system as “ACME.”

It is very hard for business owners to catch this type of activity. Even if they are looking at the financial statements frequently and the bills look a little high, they can generally seem reasonable. But this can add up quickly. In this case, more than half a million dollars was stolen by writing 20 to 30 “double checks” per month for nominal amounts spread across multiple expense accounts.
This fraud was only detected when the bookkeeper fell ill and another bookkeeper took her place. Very quickly, the new person noticed that the bank account had not been properly reconciled in months. After doing so, it was clear that there were multiple payments in the same month to the same vendor.
As a business owner, it is difficult to find good accounting help, but it is important to have more than just one person signing checks and reconciling the bank account. Also, it is important to have an outsider come and look at the books and reconciliations at least annually, and at random times.

3. Over-ordering fraud

Another one of our clients had a 12-year part-time office manager who would routinely order and receive all the office supplies. She was paid $10 per hour and given just enough work to get her up to the point (but not over) where she still remained ineligible to receive health benefits. She was a single mother, had a child at home, and became disgruntled.

For at least the last three years of her employment, she began over-ordering office supplies. She would return supplies the company did not need in exchange for a gift card, which she then used to buy something small and take the remainder in cash. It is unclear how much was stolen, but our estimates were that in one year it was over $19,000.
The easiest way for this business to have avoided this type of fraud is to do the right thing from the start. Good employees pay for themselves on average tenfold, and bad employees can ruin companies. In this case, the manager was short-sided in wanting to save $250 per month in health insurance premiums. The result was an unhealthy work environment and a scenario where this lady felt that it was “fair” for her to steal.

4. “Friendship” fraud

A brilliant engineer friend of mine once hired his best friend’s daughter to be his bookkeeper. He had known her as a kid. She was smart, hard-working and, because she was a single mother, she needed a sound income. As it turns out, she also felt mistreated by her father, felt her previous boss was out to get her, had problems at home, and needed this job to get out of debt. My friend is a great guy and a very trusting person. Within a year, the bookkeeper was the only one writing, signing and authorizing checks. She was running payroll and the only contact for the IRS.

In late 2011, he was astonished to learn that all of his bank accounts were frozen and levied by the IRS. Though he had paid and filed all of his personal income taxes on time, his bookkeeper was stealing the money that was supposed to go to payroll taxes. As the only IRS point-of-contact for the business, she strung this out over a three-year period and stole $439,000. Three days later, the company was forced to shut down, 15 employees lost their jobs, and the shareholders (including her father) lost all of their money.
The moral of the story is to never hire anyone solely based upon friendship, family, obligation, or feelings of sympathy. Build a culture of accountability, measure results, and make sure everyone knows that you are looking at their performance. Then, hire based on talent, and pay for that talent to perform at a high level of accountability and integrity.


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As the holiday season approaches, you may be thinking about employee gifts. While everyone appreciates a holiday treat, Cindy Ventrice, author of Make Their Day! Employee Recognition that Works (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2009) says holiday gifts and bonuses are now considered an entitlement in many organizations rather than a reward for hard work. People bank on their holiday bonuses.

“They plan their vacations, their gift giving, some plan it right into their income in terms of paying their bills. So, there is no appreciation element in many cases. They’re not seeing it as the reward. They see it as a piece of their compensation,”

says Ventrice.

While Ventrice is clear that companies shouldn’t do away with the holiday bonus, she argues that true recognition is not given through a one-time bonus check. Here are four things to consider when deciding how to thank your employees.

1. Include a personal message

“We often overlook the strength of written praise,”

says Ventrice.

She gives the example of an employee who kept handwritten notes of praise for years, pulling them out when they needed a confidence boost.

When you take a little bit of extra effort to put it in writing, it pays you back many times over. People read that over and over again,”

she says.

Messages should include specifics about the employee’s work and what was appreciated. They can be included in employee’s bonus envelopes or made into a group experience, such as a message board handwritten notes highlighting at least one thing that you value about each employee.

2. Know your audience

Ventrice says it’s difficult to come up with best practices when it comes to employee gifts because rewards will mean different things to different groups. Understanding what will make your staff enthusiastic is the first step in determining appropriate rewards.

“Know your staff – who they are and what they’re going to value,”

says Ventrice.

While a white water rafting adventure may be the perfect team-building reward for a young, fun office, a formal dinner at a fancy restaurant may be more suitable for a serious work culture.

3. Offer non-monetary compensation

Ventrice surveyed over 200 employees from 98 companies to find out what rewards they valued the most.

Across all ages and cultures, time off was absolutely number one,”

she says.

Flex time given for a specific accomplishment in the form of a longer lunch hour or going home early is a great way to show appreciation for a job well done.
The study confirmed that the cost of recognition awards has only minimal impact on employee perception of appreciation. Fifty-seven percent reported that the most meaningful recognition was free.Other forms of recognition that scored high included opportunities to learn from senior staff or take a course that wasn’t offered to everyone, and being given challenging assignments.

“Programs run by managers who know what makes recognition meaningful and know how to provide it translate into higher engagement, retention, loyalty and productivity,”

says Ventrice.


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Rules of Success


As Mark Siebert sugested consider the following:

In many countries, U.S. concepts carry a certain cachet simply because they’re from the U.S. The retail and service environments in many countries are simply not as competitive as they are in the U.S. It’s the heart of capitalism and entrepreneurship.”

And in the Darwinian world of business, that type of environment produces the strongest survivors.

Many franchisors initiate their global franchise efforts through serendipity. Perhaps a foreign investor looking for a franchise came across their listing at

Entrepreneur’s FranchiseZone, and that chance encounter leads to an international franchise opportunity.


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