Category: Money

Here’s what college economists would tell Greta Thunberg | American Enterprise Institute

If climate activist Greta Thunberg should listen to US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and study economics in college before lecturing world leaders, what might she learn? It would depend, of course, on her instructors. But there’s a good chance that what she would take from scholars is that human-driven climate change is a real phenomenon and the risk of significant harm merits serious action by global policymakers. For example: A review of the UChicago Booth/IGM Survey of top economists suggests the thrust of the debate is about what to do rather than whether to do anything at all. Swedish 16-year-old ... Read more

Employee Demographics Don’t Have to Be at Odds with Employees’ Identities

MirageC/Getty Images Over the past decade, more people have begun to openly acknowledge that their identities don’t fit in with existing conceptions of gender, race, and ethnicity. The way we see ourselves has evolved to better reflect the nuances and complexities of being human. “He” and “she” are no longer the only acceptable pronouns. It is becoming more widely understood that racial and ethnic identities can change across time and place. In many areas of the world, the culture has begun to recognize these changes due to a number of societal trends: rising rates of immigration; marriage between racially and ... Read more

How to Nail the Q&A After Your Presentation

Executive Summary When preparing to give a presentation, most professionals focus their energy on the main portion of their talk — their key messages, slides, and takeaways. And far too few people think through how you’ll answer questions at the end of the presentation can be a big mistake. If you’re worried about how to hand the Q&A, there are several things you can do. Change your mindset. Rather than dreading this part of the talk, develop an appreciation for the conversation. It’s a good thing that people have follow-up questions and want to further engage with your content. Beforehand, ... Read more

Goldman Sachs’ baby step in the right direction on board diversity – Axios

Goldman Sachs announced Thursday that it won’t help take European and North American companies public unless they have at least one “diverse” board director, effective July 1. The big picture: In general, this is a positive development. Board diversity has been shown to improve company performance, per numerous academic studies, and far too many issuers continue to rely on bogus “pipeline” or meritocracy excuses for their boardroom homogeny. A bank spokesperson tells me that “diverse” means anyone who isn’t a straight, white male. And a quick grammatical nit: “Diverse” shouldn’t be used to describe an individual. A group can be ... Read more

Is It Time to Leave the Family Business?

Executive Summary For most people, deciding to make a mid-career job switch is not a big deal. But for family members in a family business, the decision becomes far more complex. A critical misstep in communicating your choice can lead to a permanent break in family relations, but paralysis can result in personal bitterness and regret over the career you could have had if you’d chosen a different path. Before making any big moves, evaluate where you are in your own career development, why it’s not what you might have hoped for, and what you can (and can’t) do about ... Read more

America’s local economy keeps shrinking – Axios

What’s happening: The Yelp Economic Average had its largest quarter-over-quarter decline in a year in Q4, “fueled by slumps in retail and services businesses.” The fourth quarter of 2019 marked the fifth straight quarter the measure has shown a level of economic strength weaker than in 2016, when the metric debuted. Why it matters: “Yelp has information not only on millions of U.S. brick-and-mortar businesses but on the consumer demand expressed by the millions of consumers who view, review, and post photos of businesses on Yelp every day,” the company said in a release accompanying the analysis. Yelp says its ... Read more

Winning worker hearts and minds is key to companies achieving their green goals

A lot of companies say they care about the environment and commit to certain goals but don’t end up doing much about it. A whopping 78% of companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500, for example, issued sustainability reports in 2018 and 66% of all U.S. companies committed to the U.N.‘s Sustainable Development Goals in 2017 through either explicit statements about the goals or implicit actions that support them. But relatively few say they’ve actually embedded the sustainability goals into their business strategies or into departments such as communications, human resources and supply chain management, corporate functions that can play ... Read more

Why progressives should favor globalization: My long-read Q&A with Kimberly Clausing | American Enterprise Institute

Nowadays, globalization has many critics on both sides of the aisle. On the right, it seems that advocates for global markets have lost some ground to populists and nationalists over the past few years. On the left, however, things are less clear. While presidential candidates like Warren and Sanders have decried both America’s trade deals and the influence of multinational corporations, support for trade and immigration among Democratic voters has never been higher than it’s been throughout the Trump administration. To explore this dichotomy, and to hear the progressive case for globalization, I spoke last week with Kimberly Clausing on ... Read more

S&P finds record low credit-ratings downgrades – Axios

The number of companies around the world that had their credit ratings downgraded from investment grade to speculative grade — so-called fallen angels — hit the lowest level in 23 years, S&P Global reported Thursday. Context: There were only 19 fallen angels last year, which marked the fourth consecutive year the number has declined, the longest stretch on record. But, but, but: While BBB-rated bonds grew to a record 50% of all outstanding investment grade U.S. corporate debt last year, downgrades fell to a record low 0.3%, data from BofA Global Research found. The number of “zombie companies,” or businesses ... Read more

What to Say in an Exit Interview

Executive Summary Good leaders make things better for others, and the exit interview is a small, but important, way to contribute to this aim. What should you include in your feedback? The author offers six suggestions: 1) Your reason for leaving; 2) How well your job was structured and if you had the appropriate tools to succeed; 3) If you had opportunities to learn and grow; 4) How you feel about your manager and other leaders; 5) What you liked most about your job and the company; and 6) Your top recommendations for improvement. Steve Bronstein/Getty Images Given that most ... Read more