How To Get Your Team To Stop Asking You Every Little Question

You’re finally in the flow, typing away and making progress on that strategy document. And then a team member IMs you a question. And then another one pops up. Before you know it, your afternoon is gone and you’ve made no progress. Sound familiar?

In order to make time for reflective thinking, managers need to facilitate their team members’ independence. This is especially important if your team is not physically together, because “quick questions” sent through team chat channels can otherwise be endless.

Start by analyzing the problem. What are the reasons your team members feel they need your input? Is it because they don’t have the confidence to make decisions on their own? Because they fear reprisals if they make the “wrong” decision? Because they are unqualified or inexperienced? Categorizing the types of issues can be helpful to recognizing patterns and taking corrective action.

Once you understand what they’re coming to you about, then you need to determine why, and what role you play in that. Does your behavior enable, or even encourage, your staff to bring you every little “speed bump” in their day? Does it lead them to believe that you are the only one who is authorized to solve problems or make decisions? Does the way you interact with them cause them to lack confidence in their own judgment or make the limits of their authority unclear to them? Do they have good reason to fear making a mistake?

Below are ideas you can implement in four specific categories that will empower your employees while promoting your own productivity.

1. Put an emphasis on attention management.

Start by identifying whether an “open-door policy” is something that is stated or promoted in your organization. If so, make it explicit with a clear definition. Of course it’s important for leaders to be available to their teams. But “being available” shouldn’t come at the cost of everyone’s work being interrupted unpredictably, all throughout the day. An open-door policy was never intended to mean that anyone is available to be interrupted at any time for any reason.

A better implementation is to be clear that everyone in your organization should be considered accessible, but not necessarily constantly available. Individual team members need to provide signals about when they are available to be interrupted, and when they aren’t. And the culture needs to support this undistracted work time.

In a virtual situation, encourage the team to practice attention management by periodically closing their email client, putting their phone on silent and out of sight, and setting their chat tools to “do not disturb.” You should model this behavior, because if you never do it, your team won’t either, no matter what you say.

In the office, indicate your do-not-disturb times with some sort of signal, and empower your team to do the same: You could use a do-not-disturb sign, a cubicle flag, or headphones, for example. Everyone should know what the signals are and what they mean. Then be judicious about putting them up to create undistracted work time, and taking them down when you’re willing to allow interruptions.

These scenarios might seem impossible at your organization. In that case, you need to look at the way communication flows. Put a focus on creating a culture that supports asynchronous communication, where the conversation isn’t always “live” but people can chime in when it’s best for their work flow. My favorite team collaboration tool, Twist, offers a great guide for how to do that.

2. Promote self-confidence in your staff.

Set boundaries for your employees, making sure they understand the responsibilities of their role, the types of decisions they can and should make on their own, and the general limits of their authority. Then, encourage them to find their own solutions to day-to-day problems. Instead of answering questions, try using the phrase, “I trust your judgment.” The more successful your direct reports are in solving their problems on their own, the more their confidence will grow. This is a great way to develop your team members while also increasing your own opportunities for undistracted work time.

One thing that can interfere with your team’s autonomy is if you’re the kind of manager who likes having a lot of control, and being involved in every decision. This kind of micromanaging is a burden on you and stifles your team’s growth. You can’t do everyone’s job for them, nor should you. Empower your team members to make their own decisions. If you are unsure whether you are micromanaging, ask a trusted peer or former employee to give you honest feedback.

3. Embrace the tough decisions.

If there are employees whose judgment you don’t trust, try to understand why, so you can find remedies. Do the employees have a gap in their skill sets? Would additional training help? Is the person new to the organization? Perhaps more time is needed to “learn the ropes.” Maybe finding a mentor or “buddy” on the team would be helpful. But set a time limit on this.

Occasionally, you may find you’ve made a hiring mistake. The hardest questions to face are whether you have the right person in the wrong role, or whether the person isn’t a good fit for the organization. Don’t drag your feet here. Make it a win for you and the employee by helping the person find another role at your organization, or a new job somewhere else. This will enable you to cut your losses, as well as help develop your company’s reputation as a good place to work.

4. Create a safe environment to make mistakes.

If there are serious, unpleasant consequences to honest mistakes, your organization has a “CYA culture,” where people aren’t coming to you because they want your input, they’re just looking for a way to shift any future blame. This will stifle growth and prevent your organization from being adaptable. Remember the old adage, “Praise in public, correct in private.” Speak to team members privately when one of their solutions does not provide the best outcome. Emphasize the idea that mistakes are opportunities to learn.

Hold team members accountable to their decisions by using mistakes as teaching opportunities. Call attention to the lesson learned, and make sure it sticks, but if the decision was ethical and made in good faith, be supportive and empathetic.

By implementing these four strategies, you’ll be able to minimize interruptions from your direct reports, and you’ll create more opportunities to focus on the thoughtful work your leadership position demands. In the process, you’ll inspire confidence, innovation, and creativity in your team members. When you empower your team to work more independently, you improve as a leader and ultimately, you contribute more to the success of the organization.

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Critics:
Team management is the ability of an individual or an organization to administer and coordinate a group of individuals to perform a task. Team management involves teamwork, communication, objective setting and performance appraisals. Moreover, team management is the capability to identify problems and resolve conflicts within a team. There are various methods and leadership styles a team manager can take to increase personnel productivity and build an effective team. In the workplace teams can come in many shapes and sizes who all work together and depend on one another.
They communicate and all strive to accomplish a specific goal. Management teams are a type of team that performs duties such as managing and advising other employees and teams that work with them. Whereas work, parallel, and project teams hold the responsibility of direct accomplishment of a goal, management teams are responsible for providing general direction and assistance to those teams.

Team building activities

Team-building activities are a series of simple exercises involving teamwork and communication. The main objectives of team building activities are to increase trust amongst team members and allow team members to better understand one another. When choosing or designing team-building activities it is best to determine if your team needs an event or an experience. Generally an event is fun, quick and easily done by non-professionals. Team building experiences provide richer, more meaningful results. Experiences should be facilitated by a professional on an annual basis for teams that are growing, or changing.

What makes teams effective

Team effectiveness occurs when the team has appropriate goals to complete and the confidence to accomplish those goals. Communication is also a large part of effectiveness in a team because in order to accomplish tasks, the members must negotiate ideas and information. Another aspect of effectiveness is reliability and trust. When overcoming the “storming” phase of Bruce Tuckman’s stages of group development, trust is established, and it leads to higher levels of team cohesion and effectiveness.

If there is a conflict, effectiveness allows cohesion and the ability to overcome conflict. Specifically in management teams, more weight falls on their shoulders because they have to direct and lead other teams. Being effective is a main priority for the team or teams involved. Unlike non-managerial teams, in which the focus is on a set of team tasks, management teams are effective only insofar as they are accomplishing a high level of performance by a significant business unit or an entire firm.Having support from higher-up position leaders can give teams insight on how to act and make decisions, which improves their effectiveness as well.

See also

 

How The Power Of Predictive Analytics Can Transform Business

Tableau analytics visual

With the acceleration of digital transformation in business, most CTOs, CIOs, and even middle management or analysts are now asking, “What’s next with data?” and what ongoing role will technology play in both digital and data transformations. Other questions that keep these individuals up at night include:

  • How can people throughout all organizational levels be more empowered to use data and help others make better decisions?
  • What prevents people from more deeply exploring and using data?
  • In what ways can analytics tools and methods help more people use data in the daily routine of business—asking questions, exploring hypotheses, and testing ideas?

With this in mind, plus observations and discussions with many Tableau customers and partners, it seems that today’s circumstances, behaviors, and needs make it the right time for predictive data analytics to help businesses and their people solve problems effectively.

Current realities and barriers to scale smarter decision-making with AI 

With growing, diverse data sets being collected, the analytics use cases to transform data into valuable insights are growing just as fast. Today, a wide range of tools and focused teams specialize in uncovering data insights to inform decision-making, but where organizations struggle is striking the right balance between activating highly technical data experts and business teams with deep domain experience.

Until now, using artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and other statistical methods to solve business problems was mostly the domain of data scientists. Many organizations have small data science teams focused on specific, mission-critical, and highly scalable problems, but those teams usually have a long project list to handle.

At the same time though, there are a large number of business decisions that rely on experience, knowledge, and data—and that would greatly benefit from applying more advanced analysis techniques. People with domain knowledge and proximity to the business data could benefit greatly, if they had access to these techniques.

Instead, there’s currently a back-and-forth process of relying on data scientists and ML practitioners to build and deploy custom models—a cycle that lacks agility and the ability to iterate quickly. By the end, the data that the model was trained on could be stale and the process starts again. But organizations depend on business users to make key decisions daily that don’t rise to the priority level of their central data science team.

The opportunity to solve data science challenges

This is where there’s an opportunity to democratize data science capabilities, minimizing the trade-offs between extreme precision and control versus the time to insight—and the ability to take action on these insights. If we can give people tools or enhanced features to better apply predictive analytics techniques to business problems, data scientists can gain time back to focus on more complex problems. With this approach, business leaders can enable more teams to make data-driven decisions while continuing to keep up with the pace of business. Additional benefits gained from democratizing data science in this way include:

  • Reducing data exploration and prep work
  • Empowering analyst experts to deliver data science outputs at lower costs
  • Increasing the likelihood of producing successful models with more exploration of use cases by domain experts
  • Extending, automating, and accelerating analysis for business groups and domain experts
  • Reducing time and costs spent on deploying and integrating models
  • Promoting responsible use of data and AI with improved transparency and receiving guidance on how to minimize or address bias

Business scenarios that benefit from predictive analytics 

There are several business scenarios where predictive capabilities can be immensely useful.

Sales and marketing departments can apply it to lead scoring, opportunity scoring, predicting time to close, and many other CRM-related cases. Manufacturers and retailers can use it to help with supply chain distribution and optimization, forecasting consumer demand, and exploring adding new products to their mix. Human resources can use it to assess the likelihood of candidates accepting an offer, and how they can adjust salary and benefits to meet a candidate’s values. And companies can use it to explore office space options and costs. These are just a few of the potential scenarios.

A solution to consider: Tableau Business Science

We are only at the beginning of exploring what predictive capabilities in the hands of people closely aligned with the business will unlock. AI and ML will continue to advance. More organizations, in a similar focus as Tableau, will also keep looking for techniques that can help people closest to the business see, understand, and use data in new ways to ask and answer questions, uncover insights, solve problems, and take action.

This spring Tableau introduced a new class of AI-powered analytics that gives predictive capabilities to people who are close to the business. In this next stage of expanded data exploration and use, we hope business leaders embrace data to help others make better decisions, and to provide transparent insight into the factors influencing those decisions.

When people can think with their data—when analysis is more about asking and answering questions than learning complex software or skills—that’s when human potential will be unleashed, leading to amazing outcomes. Learn more about Tableau Business Science, what this technology gives business teams, and the value it delivers to existing workflows.

Olivia Nix is a Senior Manager of Product Marketing at Tableau. She leads a team focused on the use of AI and ML in analytics and engagement, including how to use technology to enable more people in organizations to make data-driven decisions. Olivia has been at Tableau for four years where she has worked closely with development teams on new product launches. Prior to Tableau, Olivia worked as an analyst at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change (now C2ES) and Johnson Controls. She has her MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Source: How The Power Of Predictive Analytics Can Transform Business

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Critics:

Predictive analytics encompasses a variety of statistical techniques from data mining, predictive modelling, and machine learning that analyze current and historical facts to make predictions about future or otherwise unknown events.

In business, predictive models exploit patterns found in historical and transactional data to identify risks and opportunities. Models capture relationships among many factors to allow assessment of risk or potential associated with a particular set of conditions, guiding decision-making for candidate transactions.

The defining functional effect of these technical approaches is that predictive analytics provides a predictive score (probability) for each individual (customer, employee, healthcare patient, product SKU, vehicle, component, machine, or other organizational unit) in order to determine, inform, or influence organizational processes that pertain across large numbers of individuals, such as in marketing, credit risk assessment, fraud detection, manufacturing, healthcare, and government operations including law enforcement.

Predictive analytics is used in actuarial science,marketing,business management, sports/fantasy sports, insurance,policing, telecommunications,retail, travel, mobility, healthcare, child protection, pharmaceuticals,capacity planning, social networking and other fields.

One of the best-known applications is credit scoring,[1] which is used throughout business management. Scoring models process a customer’s credit history, loan application, customer data, etc., in order to rank-order individuals by their likelihood of making future credit payments on time.

Predictive analytics is an area of statistics that deals with extracting information from data and using it to predict trends and behavior patterns. The enhancement of predictive web analytics calculates statistical probabilities of future events online. Predictive analytics statistical techniques include data modeling, machine learning, AI, deep learning algorithms and data mining.Often the unknown event of interest is in the future, but predictive analytics can be applied to any type of unknown whether it be in the past, present or future.

For example, identifying suspects after a crime has been committed, or credit card fraud as it occurs.The core of predictive analytics relies on capturing relationships between explanatory variables and the predicted variables from past occurrences, and exploiting them to predict the unknown outcome. It is important to note, however, that the accuracy and usability of results will depend greatly on the level of data analysis and the quality of assumptions.

Predictive analytics is often defined as predicting at a more detailed level of granularity, i.e., generating predictive scores (probabilities) for each individual organizational element. This distinguishes it from forecasting. For example, “Predictive analytics—Technology that learns from experience (data) to predict the future behavior of individuals in order to drive better decisions.”In future industrial systems, the value of predictive analytics will be to predict and prevent potential issues to achieve near-zero break-down and further be integrated into prescriptive analytics for decision optimization.

See also

Teaching Diversity And Inclusion To The Billions Of Intelligent Systems Making Autonomous Decisions

Engineers Meeting in Robotic Research Laboratory

The idea that diversity and inclusion should be core drivers of the new economy and the emerging global society are mostly understood at a human level. The more people who are part of one system, being offered the same opportunities regardless of their gender, race, ethnic origin, and many other diverse variables, the higher the tide rises for everybody. But even with that intrinsic understanding of the idea that diversity and inclusion will generate a different and better world, significant barriers still exist to making this human truth a practical reality in our daily lives.

The power of all genders, all races, and all languages can change the world. Even each of these pieces, though, has its blind spots if taken as a standalone viewpoint — in effect, by seeing the world through a single lens, that lens can act as a deep barrier. Imagine how much is lost with only a single way of seeing, thinking, learning, and maybe even applying those learnings.

Digital companies talk about the power of the individual or the customer to be the center of the service. Yet how can we build around individuals without recognizing and servicing the unique combinations of needs or opinions that diverse thinking and actions entail? McKinsey has, since 2014, leaned into the idea of measuring diversity and inclusivity as a driver of business value creation. The intent is to show every year that companies that live and deliver diverse and inclusive strategies outperform their industry peers.

The gap (between diverse and inclusive leaders and the poorest performers) has gotten bigger year by year, growing from 33% percent in 2018 to 36% in 2019. Even with clear and longitudinal data, we still struggle against many inherent biases to accept and act on the fact that diversity and inclusion widen the lens for viewing ideas, thinking, processes, and customers in an increasingly global market.

The world will get more diverse over time. By 2044 it is projected that over half of Americans will belong to a minority group. We will in effect be a collection of diversities, with one in five of us not being born in the USA but living here. Multiply this American future by the nuances of each of the 195 countries in the world and together we will be the largest collection of diversities the planet has ever seen.

Now imagine a world of not just 7 billion people, but 40 billion devices computing, connecting, sensing, predicting, and running autonomously in an intelligent systems world. PwC estimated that 70% of all global GDP growth between 2020 and 2030 will come from this machine economy (AI, robotics, IoT devices).

U.S. GDP is expected to grow $10T between now and 2030. If 70% of that is from these machines sensing, predicting, computing, and connecting on the intelligent edge, then that is a $7T economy. Will these machines be more capable than humankind has been to think about diversity and inclusion in the way they work with data, humans, and other machines?

These devices don’t have a McKinsey to explain to them where and how inclusion and diversity will drive a better result. They make decisions in milliseconds based on the programming instructions they receive, and they learn as they execute their many, often complex and intelligent, tasks.

How these machines learn to think (constantly) are driven by rules set by humans and by other machines that were in part or wholly programmed by humans. How can the right behaviors be instilled in these intelligent systems? Think of two basic dynamics we must pay attention to in an increasingly intelligent systems world:

Human experiences drive diversity and inclusive design

Learning — and applying — how to be aware of the needs of diverse groups has more value than ever before. This acquired knowledge will act as the codex for how we program the devices that live and work with us globally by 2030 and beyond. There is a narrow time window in which to take our own personal experiences and the experience of others around us into account in the design and programming process for intelligent systems that will manage autonomous vehicles, medical devices, and manufacturing environments where cobots will be working alongside humans.

All machines might look and behave in the same way, but the humans around them do not, so what machine biases will exist in the intelligent systems world? Understanding how to design and program for inclusive and diverse thinking without bias means intelligent systems need to have a progressive learning ability (e.g., machine learning and digital feedback loops), as well as mission-critical capacities that mean they can safely and securely function around humans who may look, sound, move, or think differently from those whom the machines have been designed or operated around.

Machines will be diverse too and will need to be inclusive of each other

Once we live in an intelligent systems world, we will need intelligent systems to recognize each other in near instant time. These systems might be doing completely different tasks, but they might need to share data, space, or compute capacity in milliseconds. Knowing when, where, and how to have that network effect in an intelligent systems world (for example, consider autonomous vehicles) requires a capacity for inclusiveness and maybe even a clear comprehension about the power of diverse data sets from different devices to create value far greater than the sum of all parts.

Nurturing that capacity to create systems for a diversity of design and operations, as well as for an inclusiveness to allow constant learning, is a challenge that will be essential in an intelligent systems world.

We will not be able to make the right world for these intelligent systems and all that they can bring to humanity if we do not design, operate, and build them to be inclusive, diverse, and without bias in how they operate. While not suggesting that there should be a soul to an intelligent system, we should recognize that the moment in our own human world to encourage as much diversity and inclusion in our thinking is right now, and how well we do it will have major consequences for how we teach our intelligent systems to thrive in a world dominated with a diversity of machines and humans.

PRESIDENT AND CEO

With more than 25 years of experience driving digital innovation and growth at technology companies, Kevin Dallas is responsible for all aspects of the Wind River business globally. He joined Wind River from Microsoft, where he most recently served as the corporate vice president for cloud and AI business development. At Microsoft, he led a team creating partnerships that enable the digital transformation of customers and partners across a range of industries including: connected/autonomous vehicles, industrial IoT, discrete manufacturing, retail, financial services, media and entertainment, and healthcare.

Prior to joining Microsoft in 1996, he held roles at NVIDIA Corporation and National Semiconductor (now Texas Instruments Inc.) in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East in roles that included microprocessor design, systems engineering, product management, and end-to-end business leadership. He currently serves as a director on the board of Align Technology, Inc. He holds a B.S.c. degree in electrical and electronic engineering from Staffordshire University, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England.

Source: Teaching Diversity And Inclusion To The Billions Of Intelligent Systems Making Autonomous Decisions

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Related Links:

Understood.Org -Loneliness Can Impact Kids Who Learn and Think Differently

Beyond Differences – Consequences of Social Isolation

Vox – America’s Loneliness Epidemic and Coronavirus Pandemic Together

New York Times – Learning Pods

CDC.Gov – Parent Checklist

Tyler Clementi Foundation’s Cybersafety Guide

Connecticut Children’s – Mindfulness Exercises for Kids

Beyond Tolerance

Teaching Tolerance

National Seed Project Curriculum

Everyday Feminism: What is Heteronormativity?

https://www.weareteachers.com/mirrors-and-windows/

For Small Businesses, Recovery from COVID Could Take Years

Latresa McLawhorn Ryan knows well the havoc that COVID has reaped upon small businesses of color in the Atlanta area and believes the effects of COVID are likely to hang over these businesses for some time. She also knows that small businesses of color can bounce back if they get the right kind of assistance.

“We’ve lost a lot of businesses, some that were really anchors in their community,” said McLawhorn Ryan, executive director of the Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative, a nonprofit organization of community investors, advocates, and activists that supports Black-owned firms. She added that the casualties have included yoga studios, restaurants, and other businesses that rely on high traffic and face-to-face interaction. “It will take three to five years, depending on the sector, for businesses to recover from the impact of COVID.”

Because small businesses of color are an important driver of employment and asset building in their communities, the COVID-related business failures send a message throughout the community that perhaps it is more vulnerable to market forces, McLawhorn Ryan added.

The Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta and Kansas City published a recovery guide in late 2020 to offer strategies that can help small businesses of color bounce back from the COVID crisis. The guide begins by discussing the state of small businesses of color before the COVID-19 pandemic, placing these firms’ challenges into historical context.

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Entrepreneur-In-Residence Scott Shigeoka talks with economic experts and small business owners about overcoming hardships and their message of hope for recovery after COVID-19. Robert Brown, Sr. Director of Business Analytics at GoDaddy, breaks down Venture Forward, a multi-year study looking at the impact of micro and small businesses on the American economy. Resources for Small Businesses: Venture Forward study: https://www.godaddy.com/ventureforward Up-to-date info on COVID-19: https://www.cdc.gov

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A second section provides recommendations for communities looking to assist small businesses of color in the areas of credit and capital, education and training, policy, and community support. The final section shares tools for communities to develop an entrepreneurship network focused on small businesses of color.

Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic led a January 14 panel discussion with Southeast community leaders discussing ways to support small businesses. The webinar focused on the need to establish networks that can deliver resources and coaching.

Issue number 1 is funding

Janelle Williams, a senior adviser in the Atlanta Fed’s Community and Economic Development group who wrote the recovery guide with two Kansas City Fed advisers, said businesses owned by nonwhites face especially daunting challenges to regain their footing, with access to funding and credit topping the list.

“There are still structural barriers that limit small businesses of color from securing the capitalization needed to sustain and scale their businesses in a valuable way,” she said.

Much of the funds approved by U.S. lawmakers last year under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to help businesses preserve employment did not reach the smallest companies and many firms owned by people of color. For example, a Federal Reserve Bank of New York analysis found that PPP loans were given to just 20 percent of eligible companies in states with the highest densities of Black-owned firms. In Fulton County, Georgia—which includes the city of Atlanta—a total of 20.8 percent of businesses received loans from the program. In Florida’s Miami-Dade County, just 15 percent of eligible firms obtained PPP funds.

In mid-January, a third round of PPP loans opened. Small business owners of color are hopeful that more funds will reach them this time. A portion of the $284 billion approved for small businesses in the December 2020 COVID relief legislation was set aside for firms with 10 or fewer employees and lenders that cater to underserved communities, including minority-owned banks and community development financial institutions.

Small businesses of color face barriers that make it harder to gain access to capital. They often lack relationships with traditional banks and access to social networks that could help them learn about and apply for available loans. Most entrepreneurs of color don’t have family wealth that could be used to start a business.

Other factors hinder the success of nonwhite small businesses. Williams noted research showing that in the six southeastern states that are part of the Atlanta Fed’s coverage area, small businesses of color are overrepresented in sectors such as food services and retail that have been particularly vulnerable during the pandemic because of required lockdowns, social distancing guidelines, and lower demand for goods and services.

“There is a need for a broader conversation around addressing barriers to entry for small businesses of color that seek to access higher-growth industries that are moderately insulated from market pressures,” Williams said.

Different approaches to financing

The tougher path to viability that small businesses of color face has been well documented. A 2017 report from Prosperity Now, a public policy nonprofit group, notes that deep and persistent patterns of racial discrimination against business owners of color have resulted in greater loan denials and higher interest rates for loans they do obtain. Those financing outcomes result in lower profit margins and limit the opportunities for businesses of color to build thriving enterprises.

The Reserve Banks’ recovery guide notes that the needs of small businesses of color call for financing methods that are nimbler and more accessible to help level the playing field. Those could include interest-free loans, loans with rates that start low and gradually rise, deferred payments and longer repayment time frames, and flexible underwriting terms. Many community organizations consulted in developing the recovery guide “shared that grants, forgivable loans, and patient equity capital will be needed” to help these businesses spring back, the report states.

Williams said the pandemic has challenged the funders that support small businesses of color to think about the kinds of financial assistance that would be meaningful and to understand that some types of aid may not help. “Small businesses of color already are debt averse, so asking them to incur additional debt is a challenge, especially when many rely on their personal income to stay afloat,” she said.

To address these issues, community stakeholders have begun to embrace alternate financing solutions, Williams said. She noted that philanthropic groups were offering program-related investments that provide capital at lower interest rates, while community development financial institutions were introducing funding products that include opportunities for credit enhancement.

The Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative launched a COVID relief fund last year that has provided money to at least 65 small businesses and 18 nonprofits, mainly located in the northwest, southwest, and southeast parts of metro Atlanta where residents’ health and personal income both suffered acutely. The program offers loans that include flexible terms, a six-month grace period, and 30 months of repayment. Through three rounds of grants and two rounds of loans to date, the nonprofit group has dispersed about $800,000 to Black-owned businesses, McLawhorn Ryan said.

The grants and loans have helped in many ways. One restaurant, for example, used a loan from the nonprofit to acquire a food truck that enabled it to sell in different communities and expand its customer base, she said.

“All of our loans were accompanied by specific technical assistance—it helps to have capital, but it also helps to have access to expertise to help think through how to get to the next stage or how to manage cash flow,” McLawhorn Ryan noted.

McLawhorn Ryan said it’s important for funding partners to keep offering funding and general support that will enable small businesses of color to recover and advance to the next phases of development, and she cautioned against a return to business as usual over the next few years.

“This is a new economy, and therefore it requires a new perspective,” McLawhorn Ryan said. “If we are intentional about creating inclusive products, inclusive opportunities for businesses to thrive and survive during this time, we have to be dedicated to the tools that are needed to create a truly equitable environment.”

Staff writer for Economy Matters

 

Source: For Small Businesses, Recovery from COVID Could Take Years – Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

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More Contents:

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July 20, 2020

The Federal Reserve regularly assesses Americans’ financial situation. This Economy Matters article summarizes the Fed’s latest snapshot and looks at how the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic affected people’s finances.

Small Businesses Feel Pressure from COVID-19 Pandemic, Fed Research Shows

June 12, 2020

Nearly all firms have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but small firms have been hit the hardest. A recent Federal Reserve study surveyed small businesses about business conditions and expectations, and this Economy Matters article looks at the results.

Homebuilders, Brokers Expect Lower Sales and Construction, Atlanta Fed Poll Shows

June 11, 2020

Residential real estate, long a bulwark of the southeastern economy, has been dampened by COVID-19. This Economy Matters article examines recent poll results to view the pandemic’s impact on the industry.

Assessing the Regional Impact of COVID-19 on Southeastern Employment

May 27, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has profoundly affected employment. This Economy Matters article introduces the Atlanta Fed’s updated state-level Jobs Calculator, using it to show possible future scenarios, including what it would take to return to pre-pandemic employment numbers.

“You Can Build the Infrastructure from Zero”: A Conversation about Digital Adoption in Emerging Economies

March 26, 2020

Much has been written about the digital revolution’s impact on developed economies, but what about developing and emerging economies? The Economy Matters podcast features an Atlanta Fed economist who discusses his research into the question. podcast

“These Local Problems Do Have Some National Solutions”: A Conversation about Inequality

February 27, 2020

In this special episode of the Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic talks with researcher Anthony Orlando about income inequality and how a seemingly national problem can have solutions that begin close to home. podcast

Wings over America: A Conversation with Author James Fallows

January 2, 2020

In this special episode of the Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic talks with author James Fallows about Our Town, his book that attempts to deepen our understanding of American social, regional, and cultural diversity. podcast

Diplomats: U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement to Bring Certainty

December 26, 2019

Trade negotiations always require patience and persistence, and the pending deal among the United States, Canada, and Mexico was no different. An Economy Matters story presents the perspectives of Mexico’s and Canada’s diplomats.

Why the Big Fuss about Little Dots?

December 5, 2019

The insights of the members of the Federal Open Market Committee go into formulating the “dot plot,” a visual depiction of how they see the future path of the fed funds rate. This Economy Matters article explains what the dot plot is—and isn’t.

Delving Into a (Venture) Capital Idea

November 20, 2019

Venture capital is always on the lookout for the Next Big Thing. Economy Matters looks at the research of an Atlanta Fed economist who furthers our understanding of the important role venture capital plays in the U.S. economy.

“They’re Really Punching above Their Own Weight”: Venture Capital and Firm Growth

November 19, 2019

What role does venture capital play in finding and nurturing the Next Big Thing? The Economy Matters podcast tries to answer that question by talking to an Atlanta Fed economist about venture capital’s impact on firm growth and employment. podcast

“Get to Know Your Workforce”: Discussing the Benefits Cliff

November 7, 2019

In this special episode of the Economy Matters podcast, Meghan Cummings of the Women’s Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation talks with Atlanta Fed research director Dave Altig about the benefits cliff and ways employers can make the workplace more accommodating to lower-wage employees. podcast

Talking Trade and Other Things China with Economist Tao Zha

October 10, 2019

China and its economy—the world’s second largest, after only the United States—have become staples of the daily news cycle. Economy Matters spoke to an Atlanta Fed economist about Chinese trade, economic growth, the unrest in Hong Kong, and more.

Atlanta Fed Research Explores Impact of Teen Driver License Programs on Labor Participation

September 26, 2019

Restricting teens’ ability to drive has had measurable improvements on accident rates, but the restrictions have also impeded their ability to participate in the labor force. An Economy Matters article looks at Atlanta Fed research into the impact of teen driving restrictions.

Round and Round: The Basics of the Business Cycle

September 17, 2019

What ignites an economic expansion? What brings one to a halt? The answer: it depends. Economy Matters looks at the business cycle and why its behavior is inherently challenging to predict.

The Economics of Aging and the Frailty Index

September 3, 2019

Gaining a better understanding of people’s health is key to fashioning policies that serve them better as they age and become more frail. Economy Matters examines Atlanta Fed research into the frailty index, a tool that helps assess individuals’ well-being.

“What Are Businesses Reacting To?” A Conversation about Uncertainty

August 28, 2019

The Economy Matters podcast talks to an Atlanta Fed economist about his survey to measure business uncertainty. podcast

“We Do Find a Meaningful Impact”: Novice Driver Restrictions and the Labor Force

July 25, 2019

States have grown increasingly strict about novice teenage drivers. The Economy Matters podcast talks to an Atlanta Fed economist about the impact of stricter policies on teen labor force participation. podcast

Examining the Effects of Cashless Stores

June 19, 2019

Economy Matters looks at research into the impact on consumers (especially the unbanked or underbanked) of businesses’ refusal to accept cash.

Over the Cliff’s Edge? Incentives Hurting Low-Wage Workers

June 13, 2019

Some workers are forced to choose between a pay raise and the loss of a crucial form of public assistance. Economy Matters looks at the vexing phenomenon known as the “benefits cliff” and how to reduce its challenge.

“A Puzzle That Everyone Wants to Solve”: Discussing the Price-Rent Ratio

May 30, 2019

Sometimes an area’s rents increase faster than house prices. But sometimes they don’t. This episode of the Economy Matters podcast discusses the price-rent ratio and what it indicates about housing markets. podcast

Red State, Blue State: Examining the Tax Law’s Spending Effects

May 9, 2019

The 2017 tax law implemented extensive changes to people’s deductions, but the law’s impact varied widely among states. Economy Matters looks at some conclusions based on recent research from the Atlanta Fed.

Speaking Publicly on Privacy: A Conversation about Digital Privacy

April 2, 2019

Safeguarding personal data is a challenge in our digital era. In this special episode of the Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic speaks with Heinz College professor Alessandro Acquisti about the field of privacy economics. podcast

Under Pressure: The Pluses and Minuses of a Hot Economy

March 28, 2019

Does economic history hold any lessons about an economy in a sustained period of full employment? Atlanta Fed economist Julie Hotchkiss discusses her recent research into the question on this episode of the Economy Matters podcast. podcast

Brazil’s Economy, Emerging from Turmoil, Looks to Future

March 14, 2019

Brazil, Latin America’s largest economy and an important U.S. trading partner, is feeling optimistic about its economic future after years of sluggish growth and uncertainty. Economy Matters presents some expert views of the country’s prospects.

Millennials’ Spending Preferences: All That Different?

March 12, 2019

The popular perception of millennials is that their habits differ markedly from those of older generations. But Economy Matters looks at recent survey data and learns that—at least in terms of how they spend money—they’re not very different after all.

New Survey Aims to Sharpen Understanding of Uncertainty

January 24, 2019

If one thing is certain, it’s that the Atlanta Fed is measuring uncertainty. Economy Matters discusses the Survey of Business Uncertainty, which recently made its debut.

Atlanta Fed Economist Researches a “High-Pressure” Economy

January 17, 2019

When the unemployment rate becomes very low, is it beneficial to try to keep it there? An Atlanta Fed economist looked into the question, and Economy Matters discusses her research.

Untangling the Complex Causes of Inequality

December 4, 2018

Arriving at answers about economic inequality requires research from a variety of perspectives because isolating the relevant factors behind it is a formidable challenge. Some top researchers recently visited the Atlanta Fed to discuss their work on the matter.

Piecing Together the Wage Puzzle

November 29, 2018

Wages and their movements offer an important perspective on the macroeconomy. A new episode of the Economy Matters podcast features an Atlanta Fed economist discussing his observations on recent trends. podcast

A Conversation about the Role of Subprime Loans in the Home Price Boom

November 1, 2018

What relationship did the growth of subprime loans have to booming house prices last decade? The Economy Matters podcast talks to two Atlanta Fed economists who researched the question. podcast

“It’s a Really Dramatic Change”: A Discussion of the Economics of Food

October 12, 2018

How our food is sourced has changed dramatically over time. In this Economy Matters podcast episode, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic talks with Purdue University professor Jayson Lusk about food production and economics and their impact on people’s lives. podcast

Tan cerca y, sin embargo, tan lejos

August 14, 2018

A relação dos EUA com Cuba tem sido tensa por dácadas, mas continua a evoluir. A revista EconomyMatters discute algumas das recentes mudanças e quais poderão ser seus impactos econômicos.

Tão Perto, e Ainda Tão Longe?

August 14, 2018

A relação dos EUA com Cuba tem sido tensa por dácadas, mas continua a evoluir. A revista EconomyMatters discute algumas das recentes mudanças e quais poderão ser seus impactos econômicos.

So Close, Yet So Far?

August 14, 2018

The U.S. relationship with Cuba has been a fraught one for decades, but it continues to evolve. Economy Matters discusses some of the recent changes and what their economic impact might be.

Where We Live: Social Capital and Migration

June 28, 2018

What factors go into where people choose to live? What makes some places more attractive than others? The Economy Matters podcast talks to an Atlanta Fed economist about new research into these questions. podcast

The Myth of Rising Home Prices

June 19, 2018

In the run-up to the housing crisis, Atlanta Fed economist Kris Gerardi and his Fed colleagues were seeing an alarming increase in mortgage defaults. This Economy Matters story looks at Gerardi’s research in the housing market, before the crisis and now.

Immigration in the United States: A Historical Perspective

May 24, 2018

In this special episode of the Economy Matters podcast, economic historian Ran Abramitzky discusses ways he has tried to measure the economic effects of immigration. podcast

The Challenge of Predicting Tariffs’ Impact

May 15, 2018

Tariffs have largely fallen into disuse, which complicates a study of their economic effects. Economy Matters looks at how tariffs and their implementation have evolved over decades.

Seeing the Workforce through the Lens of Economics

April 12, 2018

For economists, examining the job market is like looking through a kaleidoscope: many perspectives are available. In this Economy Matters story, Atlanta Fed economist John Robertson discusses some of the ways he views the labor market and some of the tools he has helped develop to improve that view.

A Hemispheric Perspective: Exploring the Atlanta Fed’s Americas Center

February 28, 2018

Economies throughout the Americas are tightly linked, and understanding those linkages is vitally important. Economy Matters looks at the work of the Atlanta Fed’s Americas Center, which furthers our understanding of these relationships.

Atlanta Fed Economist Delivers Housing Finance Expertise

February 8, 2018

Before the U.S. housing market grabbed the headlines, Atlanta Fed economist Scott Frame devoted himself to intensely studying it. Economy Matters looks at Frame’s work and what led him to his professional path.

Atlanta Fed Surveyor Constantly Refines His Craft

January 30, 2018

Taking the pulse of businesses and attempting to divine the future from the findings is an exacting business. In this Economy Matters article, the Atlanta Fed’s director of surveys discusses the craft of constructing useful surveys.

Student Loan Borrowers Face Tough Choices

January 26, 2018

Budgeting is rarely easy, and decisions, especially for young adults, can have lifetime implications. Economy Matters looks at the choices involved in saving for retirement while paying off student loans.

Estudiantes que solicitan préstamos estudiantiles enfrentan decisiones difíciles

January 26, 2018

Los presupuestos rara vez son fáciles, y las decisiones, especialmente para los adultos jóvenes, pueden tener implicaciones de por vida. Economy Matters analiza las opciones de ahorro para la jubilación mientras paga los préstamos estudiantiles.

In Pursuit of Imperfection: An Economist Builds a Better Model

December 19, 2017

Understanding an increasingly complex economy requires increasingly powerful tools. Economy Matters looks at the research of Atlanta Fed economist Nikolay Gospodinov, who is committed to supplying them.

In through the Out Door (and Back In): A Discussion of Industry Regulation

November 29, 2017

Industry regulators often return to work in the industries they had overseen. This episode of the Economy Matters podcast talks to an economist about approaches that have been successful (or not so successful) in remedying the revolving door. podcast

Putting a Price on Unemployment

October 26, 2017

When unemployment hits, how do you quantify its impact? Economy Matters looks at some research.

A Discussion of Unemployment’s Impact on Family Welfare

October 26, 2017

What is the cost of rising unemployment to a family? The Economy Matters podcast talks to an Atlanta Fed economist about her new research that seeks to find out. podcast

What’s Going On with the Labor Force Participation Rate?

October 10, 2017

Who’s working, who’s not, and why? This episode of the Economy Matters podcast delves into recent trends in the U.S. labor force participation rate.  podcast

Atlanta Fed Economist Explores the Future of Finance

September 7, 2017

Economy Matters: Is the financial supermarket poised to go mainstream?

The Economics of Health Insurance

August 31, 2017

What is the financial impact of losing health care insurance? Economy Matters looks at the fallout in Tennessee.

The Economic Impact on Individuals of Losing Public Health Insurance

August 29, 2017

What is the financial consequence to people when they lose public health insurance? An episode of the Economy Matters podcast looks at new Atlanta Fed research that attempts to quantify the effects. podcast

Taking the Pulse of Firm Optimism

July 31, 2017

This Economy Matters podcast looks at southeastern firm optimism during the presidential transition. podcast

Economists Untangling Complex Insurance Issues

June 22, 2017

About half of Americans over 50 will stay in a nursing home at some point. Yet only about 10 percent of those over 65 have long-term care insurance. Atlanta Fed economists are researching this and other puzzles in U.S. health insurance.

An Eye on the Future: A Discussion about the Long-term Care Insurance Market

June 22, 2017

The Economy Matters podcast talks to Atlanta Fed economists about the long-term care insurance market. podcast

The Wherefores and Whys of Wages

May 24, 2017

After an extended period of relative stagnation, wages have been showing signs of growth. This episode of the Economy Matters podcast discusses recent wage trends and how the Atlanta Fed views wage behavior. podcast

Atlanta Fed Research Examines Debt’s Effects on Health

March 7, 2017

Everyone knows that money woes can prey on one’s mind. But what about on one’s health? Economy Matters looks at recent Atlanta Fed research that explores the impact of delinquent debt on mortality.

Travel Blooms in Cuba as U.S. Relations Thaw, but Obstacles Remain

March 2, 2017

Once off limits to U.S. tourists for decades, Cuba is now luring growing numbers of American visitors. But a number of questions loom, and the answers to them will determine if this growth will continue. Economy Matters looks at the perspective of Cuba experts to learn more.

A Conversation about the Health Effects of Delinquent Debt

March 2, 2017

It’s no surprise that carrying unmanageable debt is stressful. But can it also bring adverse health effects? The Economy Matters podcast features an Atlanta Fed economist who looked into the question. podcast

An Eventful Decade: Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart Looks Back at His Tenure

February 3, 2017

After a decade at the helm of the Atlanta Fed, Dennis Lockhart is preparing to step down as president and CEO. In this Economy Matters podcast episode, Lockhart looks back at his time leading the Bank. podcast

To Fail or Not to Fail? A Discussion of Banking’s “Too Big to Fail” Problem

January 5, 2017

The problem of financial institutions whose distress would be large enough to imperil the larger economy has vexed policymakers for decades. The Economy Matters podcast looks at some of the challenges involved in solving too big to fail. podcast

A Healthy Labor Market Still Includes Many Puzzles

December 8, 2016

Today’s labor market poses numerous questions for economists. Economy Matters looks at some of these questions and considers the good news they portend, as well as the not-so-good news.

Immigration, Offshoring, and Their Effects on U.S. Wages

December 1, 2016

When low-skill immigrants arrive in the United States, and middle-skill jobs are offshored, how are wages affected? An episode of the Economy Matters podcast looks at research into the question. podcast

​Examining China’s Economy: A Conversation with Atlanta Fed Researchers

September 22, 2016

The Chinese economy—the world’s second largest—is of broad interest to economists and many others, and efforts to better understand it are numerous. This episode of the Economy Matters podcast talks to Atlanta Fed economists who have worked to provide clearer data about China’s economy.

Trade Dynamics and China, Part 3: How Do the United States and China Compare?

September 20, 2016

This final article in a three-part series in Economy Matters looks at trade flows between China and the rest of the world, comparing them with the trade flows of the United States. How have these patterns changed over time and across what types of goods?

Dinámica Comercial y China, Parte 3: Una comparación entre Estados Unidos y China

September 20, 2016

Este último artículo de una serie de tres partes publicado en Economy Matters aborda el flujo comercial entre China y otros países del resto del mundo, y lo compara con el flujo comercial de Estados Unidos. ¿De qué manera han cambiado estos patrones comerciales a través del tiempo y con respecto a los tipos de bienes?

A Dinâmica Comercial e a China, 3a Parte: Como Comparar os Estados Unidos e a China?

September 20, 2016

Este último artigo de uma série de três da Economy Matters examina os fluxos comerciais entre a China e o resto do mundo comparando-os aos fluxos comerciais dos Estados Unidos. Como esses padrões de comércio mudaram ao longo do tempo e entre quais tipos de mercadorias?

Economistas do FED de Atlanta Investigam os Mistérios da Economia Chinesa

September 8, 2016

A China é a segunda maior economia do mundo, mas ainda é desafiador entender totalmente sua economia. Uma equipe de economistas do FED de Atlanta está trabalhando para abreviar esse desafio. Economy Matters conversou recentemente com a equipe sobre este trabalho.

Atlanta Fed Economists Probe Mysteries of Chinese Economy

September 8, 2016

China’s growing economy has increasing influence on the economy of the United States. Economy Matters talks to some Atlanta Fed economists who are working to better understand China’s economic data.

Economistas de la Fed de Atlanta investigan misterios de la economía de China

September 8, 2016

China es la segunda mayor economía del mundo pero entender su economía es un desafío. Un equipo de economistas de la Fed de Atlanta está trabajando para dilucidar este desafío. Economy Matters conversó recientemente con ellos acerca de su trabajo.

Are Lemons Sold First? A Discussion of the Mortgage Market

August 18, 2016

The housing crisis made clear that not all mortgage bonds are equally good investments. But what can we learn today from how mortgages are offered for sale as investments? The Economy Matters podcast talks to an Atlanta Fed economist to find out.

Coming to Our Census: A Look at the Atlanta Fed’s Research Data Center

July 21, 2016

The Atlanta Fed is home to a Research Data Center (RDC), which gives qualified researchers access to data available in few other places. In this Economy Matters podcast episode, Julie Hotchkiss, director of the Atlanta RDC, discusses how the facility enables research that otherwise would not be possible.

Part Chart, Part Science: The Evolution of Economic Indicators

July 14, 2016

Just as the economy has evolved over many decades, so too have the ways economic activity is measured. What was once perhaps a key metric might now be only a marginally useful vestige in an economist’s toolbox. Economy Matters looks at some newer tools and how they help assess the economy.

Small Businesses Look to Alternative Funding Sources

June 16, 2016

​Many options are available these days for financing a small business, and this story looks at some of them.

Keeping Up with the Gazelles, Part 5: For Gazelle Founders, Hiring Goes beyond the Resume

June 16, 2016

All businesses seek the right hires, but for a small business, having the right employees is arguably even more crucial. The fifth and final installment of Economy Matters‘ Gazelle Project talked to some founders of gazelles—or fast-growing small businesses—about the role of hiring in establishing and building a business.

ECONversations Explores Aging’s Impact on the Economy

May 26, 2016

​The number of Americans 65 and older will increase by 66 percent over the next two decades. This article offers highlights of a recent ECONversations webcast in which two Atlanta Fed research economists discussed the economic and fiscal implications.

Senior Housing Industry Aging Gracefully

May 26, 2016

The surge in the population of older Americans is fueling the growth of “senior living facilities” to house this population. Economy Matters looks at this nascent industry.

Dinámica del Comercio y China, Parte 2: El Mundo – Espanõl

May 2, 2016

¿Cuánto importa y exporta China en los mercados globales y que tipos de bienes intercambia? La segunda entrega de una serie de tres partes de Economy Matters describe el comercio entre China y el resto del mundo en las últimas décadas.

Trade Dynamics and China, Part 2: The World

May 2, 2016

How much does China import and export globally and what types of goods are exchanged? Economy Matters charts China-world trade over the past few decades in the second of a three-part series.

A Dinâmica Comercial e a China, 2ª Parte: O Mundo – Português

May 2, 2016

Quanto a China importa e exporta globalmente, e que tipos de mercadorias são comercializadas? A segunda parte da série de três artigos da Economy Matters faz um mapa da participação chinesa no mercado mundial nas últimas décadas.

German Central Banker Says Euro Economy Gradually Recovering

April 19, 2016

The European Central Bank loosened monetary policy to boost the euro area economy. But that brings economic risk, said a German central banker at a recent luncheon at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Economy Matters offers highlights of his presentation.

Health Care Sector Projected to Expand

April 14, 2016

Medical demands of the increasingly aging population will boost the health care and social assistance sector, contributing substantially to the U.S. labor market. This Economy Matters article investigates where the jobs will be and looks at the balance between aging patients and an aging workforce.

Where Have All the Teen Workers Gone?

April 7, 2016

If you remember the job you held as a teenager, you might be part of a dwindling group. Fewer teens are entering the labor force today, and Economy Matters looks at some of the factors behind the decline.

The State of the States: Uneven Recovery and Tough First Quarters

March 18, 2016

How have states fared since the end of the recession? This Economy Matters article looks at state-level GDP data to find out.

Among Ugly Houses, Ours Is Prettiest

March 17, 2016

​ Soon after the release of Michael Lewis’s book The Big Short, some Fed economists wrote an analysis of the book for the Atlanta Fed’s Real Estate Research blog. Read about them here.

Keeping Up with the Gazelles, Part 4: Social Capital—The Battle Cry of the Gazelle

March 10, 2016

Founders of small businesses always have a vision for what they want to achieve, but they don’t always have all the answers. Economy Matters talked to some founders of gazelles—or fast-growing small businesses—about the role of mentors in establishing and building a business.

A Brighter Picture: Measuring Regional Variation in Labor Utilization

February 23, 2016

By some calculations, labor resource utilization rates across the United States still have not returned to prerecession levels. But according to this story in Economy Matters, the Atlanta Fed’s ZPOP measure paints a brighter picture.

Taking the Temperature of Real Estate

February 18, 2016

Regionally, the real estate sector has been important to the economy and has acted as a bellwether for other sectors, such as employment. In the new episode, two Atlanta Fed experts discuss real estate—and whether we’re in a new bubble.

Ask the Expert: An Interview with Stephen Kay

February 11, 2016

With the U.S. labor force aging and baby boomers moving into retirement, pensions have garnered much attention in recent years. Economy Matters spoke with an Atlanta Fed pension expert about the challenges and opportunities ahead.

Economists’ Views of The Big Short

February 4, 2016

​ Soon after the release of Michael Lewis’s book The Big Short, some Fed economists wrote an analysis of the book for the Atlanta Fed’s Real Estate Research blog. Read about them here.

U.S. and China Trade by the Numbers

February 4, 2016

​ Just as every picture tells a story, numbers can also be quite telling. Economy Matters has selected a few interesting integers about the trade relationship between the United States and China.

A Dinâmica Comercial e a China, 1ª Parte: Os Estados Unidos – Português

January 28, 2016

Quão atrelado ao desempenho econômico da China está o desempenho da economia dos EUA e o desempenho das economias em todo o mundo? Esta primeira parte de uma série de três artigos da Economy Matters lança uma luz sobre essa questão.

Trade Dynamics and China, Part 1: The United States

January 28, 2016

How tied up in China’s economic performance is the performance of the U.S. economy and the performance of economies around the world? This first installment of a three-part series in Economy Matters sheds some light on this issue.

Dinámica del Comercio Internacional y China, Parte 1: Los Estados Unidos – Espanõl

January 28, 2016

Cuál es el grado de asociación de la actividad económica en China y el desempeño de la economía Estados Unidos y del resto del mundo? Esta primera entrega de una serie de tres partes en Economy Matters arroja algo de luz sobre esta cuestión.

Lockhart: Economy Achieving Liftoff Conditions

January 14, 2016

In a recent speech, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart observed a number of improving economic barometers. Can a monetary policymaking move be far behind? Economy Matters summarizes his remarks.

Expecting Solid Growth, Lockhart Focusing on Inflation

January 14, 2016

Setting monetary policy requires an understanding of current conditions, but it also takes into account how policy changes reverberate down the road. Economy Matterslooks at recent remarks by Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart about considerations that go into the policymaking process.

Going Inside GDPNow

January 14, 2016

Since its 2014 debut, the Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow tool has compiled an impressive track record in estimating changes in the gross domestic product. In this episode, Atlanta Fed economist Pat Higgins, the creator of GDPNow, discusses the tool, how it works, and some of the challenges involved in measuring the economy.

Keeping Up with the Gazelles, Part 3: Financing the Herd

December 23, 2015

Founders of small businesses face innumerable challenges, chief among them financing. Economy Matters talked to some founders of gazelles–or fast-growing small businesses–about how they financed their endeavors and how financing affected their business strategies.

Of Cars and Capital Flows: Mexican Central Bank Leader Discusses Auto Production, Global Challenges

December 17, 2015

Mexico, one of the largest trading partners of the United States, has been experiencing significant economic changes. A representative of Mexico’s central bank recently visited the Atlanta Fed to discuss some of them, and Economy Matters recaps his remarks.

A Story in Charts: Who Works for Minimum Wage?

November 12, 2015

Most minimum wage workers work part-time. This week, Economy Matters tells a story of minimum wage workers in a series of charts.

Keeping Up with the Gazelles, Part 2: Why Gazelle Founders Set Sail

November 12, 2015

There are as many reasons for founding a business as there are businesses. Economy Matters talked to some founders of gazelles, or fast-growing small businesses, to learn their reasons for setting out on their own.

The Death of a Reserve Currency

November 12, 2015

The Dutch bank florin—the dominant currency in Europe during much of the 17th and 18th centuries—lost its reserve currency status during the period 1781–92. In this Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed economist Will Roberds talks about the rise and fall of the currency and what lessons it holds for today’s central bankers.

Atlanta Fed’s Hotchkiss: Don’t Be Overly Alarmed by Shrinking Labor Force

November 5, 2015

Some economists have been fretting about the declining labor force participation rate. But how big a source of concern should it really be? Economy Matters looks at a recent examination of some trends to draw conclusions.

The Relationship between the Minimum Wage and Rates of Youth Drinking and Driving

October 15, 2015

If a young person gets a raise at work, could the extra money lead to increased reckless behavior such as drinking and driving? A new Economy Matters podcast discusses Atlanta Fed research into the question.

Atlanta Fed President Lockhart’s Economic Narrative Considers the Long View

October 15, 2015

Setting monetary policy requires an understanding of current conditions, but it also takes into account how policy changes reverberate down the road. Economy Matters looks at recent remarks by Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart about considerations that go into the policymaking process.

Tools for the Armchair Economist: Taking the Pulse of GDP

October 1, 2015

Gross domestic product, or GDP, is an important measure of the economy’s health. However, official figures are released with a delay, posing challenges in gauging current conditions. Economy Matters explores the Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow model, which provides several real-time forecasts each month.

Gender Equality Is Smart Economics, Expert Says

October 1, 2015

Economists often base decisions on efficiency, but does this sort of decision making consider its gender impact? Economy Matters sat in on a recent talk by an academic who discussed the question.

What History Can Teach Us about E-Money

October 1, 2015

Could government-issued and privately issued electronic money coexist? Based on the 1914 to 1934 experience in the United States, the answer is yes, according to an Atlanta Fed working paper. Economy Matters summarizes the paper.

A Story in Five Charts: Who Works Part-Time?

September 24, 2015

More than three-quarters of all part-time workers in the United States choose to work fewer hours. The remaining quarter are involuntary. Economy Matters tells you who the part-timers are and their reasons for working part-time.

Keeping Up with the Gazelles, Part 1: Is the Herd Thinning?

September 17, 2015

Young, high-growth companies—sometimes known as gazelles—have traditionally been an important source of job creation, but the number of U.S. start-ups is in long-term decline. Economy Matters looks at the impact a diminishing herd of gazelles could have on the employment market.

Tools for the Armchair Economist: What’s Your Number?

September 17, 2015

Track your own personalized level of inflation with myCPI, a new calculator from the Atlanta Fed that tailors the U.S. inflation measure to individual circumstances. Economy Matters introduces this tool for the “armchair economist.”

The Government’s Conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

September 17, 2015

When the U.S. housing market swooned in 2008, the housing agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac became distressed and entered into a government conservatorship that was intended to be temporary. In this Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed economist Scott Frame discusses the circumstances leading to the ongoing conservatorship.

How Was Steve Jobs Unlike Mark Twain? A Conversation with Economist David Galenson

September 10, 2015

Conceptually creative people do dramatic things, while experimentally creative people just keep working away, eventually accomplishing great things. Economist David Galenson posits two types of creativity, and argues for more research.

Tools for the Armchair Economist: Atlanta Fed Adds Wage Growth Tracker

September 3, 2015

Healthy wage growth has been an important missing ingredient in an otherwise strengthening economy. But recently, the Wage Growth Tracker, a new tool from the Atlanta Fed, showed a sharp rise in wages. Economy Matters introduces this tool for the “armchair economist.”

Ask the Economist

September 3, 2015

Atlanta Fed research director Dave Altig recently sat down with Economy Matters to discuss productivity, technological innovation, and the reasons he feels optimistic about the future of the U.S. economy.

Getting to the FOMC

August 20, 2015

All eyes have been on the Federal Open Market Committee as the central bank’s main policymaking body considers when to raise the federal funds rate for the first time since 2008.

The ABCs of the FOMC: Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart Discusses the Policymaking Process

August 20, 2015

Not many people get the opportunity to sit in on a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee. But in this debut Economy Matters podcast, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart, a voting member of the FOMC, takes us behind the scenes, describing how participants conduct deliberations, reach consensus, and cast votes on setting national monetary policy.

Wage Growth Is Intertwined with the Fed’s Dual Mandate

August 20, 2015

Wage growth matters to the Fed. Wages and broader labor costs are crucial to both components of the central bank’s dual mandate: price stability and maximum employment.

How Much Can Monetary Policy Do?

August 20, 2015

Through 2014, a range of indicators suggested that the underutilization of labor market resources gradually diminished. But how much labor market slack remains?

The Smallest of Small Firms: How Are They Financed?

August 20, 2015

Every business has to start somewhere, and most start with one employee. New Atlanta Fed research—summarized in this Economy Matters article—looks into how these firms—known as nonemployers—obtain financing.

Want A Successful Business? Focus On These 5 Things

It shocks me to see how many entrepreneurs continue to get in their own way by focusing on the wrong things in business. There’s no reason to make success hard when it’s easy.

Don’t focus on what you don’t know at first you’ll just get frustrated and stuck. Focus instead on what you can do and keep going to gain momentum. This means focusing on the easy parts first, then coming back to the more difficult aspects of building your business. Hopefully, by then you’ll have built up enough momentum that it won’t break your productive focus.

The following are some of the basic business skills (especially soft skills) that drive you to success with ease. These basic skills are what truly set you up for success.

  1. Focus on what works for easy success. Many entrepreneurs believe they’ll succeed, but they lack the basic business skills and common business sense to back up that belief. They waste a lot of time focusing on expensive details.

For instance, when I work with entrepreneurs in building or reinventing their businesses, I help them develop or re-create their branding. Occasionally, I get a client who gets stuck on such details as perfecting the font on the logo when he should be focusing on areas of the business that generate profits. People like this make it hard for themselves, instead of making it easy by trusting the process.

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Introducing how to succeed in business. 6 Secret steps to success. Part 2 – How to achieve your dreams in real life – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHwxR…

Obsessing over perfection or the wrong details isn’t cost-effective. You must learn how to prioritize. Know how much time to spend on each aspect of your business, and don’t waste time on less important tasks.

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  1. Avoid “Squirrel Syndrome.” It’s not uncommon for a business owner to spin their wheels and lose focus. When this happens, many people start looking for the next bright, shiny object to grab hold of. This is called Squirrel Syndrome.
  • Squirrels have a severe inability to focus.
  • Squirrels often dart back and forth—doubting their deci­sions—unable to choose a direction.
  • Squirrels have something to teach us: what not to do.

The Squirrel Syndrome may cause abrupt dashes from one idea to another or one project to the next. When this happens, you become unfocused and may even become frantic about not getting things accomplished. The result is, you delay or never complete important projects to reach your goals.

You can avoid Squirrel Syndrome by learning to recognize when a squirrel shows up in your life. Refocus by taking the time to define the project or direction in which you need to go. Then stay on task and turn off all distractions. Remember, every time you stray off course, it takes that much longer to reach your goals.

  1. Focus on activities that create results. Focus is one of those basic-but-critical, habits you need to master if you want to be successful. Improve your focus on the day-to-day basic business activities you do best, and from which you produce extraordinary results. If you don’t, you’ll create higher stress levels and may experience burnout. When you spend most of your time and energy doing the business tasks you’re brilliant at and allow others (like employees or subcontractors) to do the rest, you reap the biggest rewards.

For example, don’t try building a website unless you’re a webmaster, and don’t try learning technical skills if that isn’t the best use of your time. Outsource those things instead, and focus on running your business so it can grow and prosper.

  1. Multitask mindfully. The key to multitasking is to do it strategically and mindfully. Mindful multitasking means that you check in with yourself and determine how you need to focus in each new situation.

Mindful multitasking allows you to stop reacting to distractions, such as the automatic reflex to answer the phone or read an incoming text. It allows you to focus on the actions that provide the best results and disregard everything else. After you set your intentions for the day, create a to-do list that you can tackle using mindful multitasking, allowing yourself to be present in each action you take for the day.

  1. Focus on developing one big project at a time. Don’t try to start multiple projects at once—it fragments focus and time. Entrepreneurs are creative people, often with many good business ideas. And it’s hard turning off the desire to act on multiple ideas at one time. But if you split your attention between more than one big project at a time, you’ll run into trouble completing anything at all. You’re going to need all your energy and focus to get your one new project off the ground.

Here are five ways to remain focused on whatever your task at hand may be:

  1. Write out what you need to accomplish each day so you don’t forget important tasks. When a new idea comes to mind, don’t stop what you’re doing. Simply make a note of it and come back to it at a more convenient time.
  2. Focus on your overall ideas and then implement an effective action plan. Keep your top three goals in mind and commit to achieving them each week. Write down the specific actions you need to take to achieve those goals.
  3. Tackle creative work first. Mindless work will drain your energy, lower your focus, and waste your time. When you start with creative work at the beginning of the day, you can work on the most complex projects when your energy is highest before moving on to simpler tasks, such as answering emails or returning calls.
  4. Understand what’s worthy of distraction. Don’t allow last-minute, nonemergency issues to kill your focus. Stay on task and stick to your commitments. Prioritize other tasks and put together a timeline so you’re not needlessly distracted.
  5. Unplug from email, social media, and phone calls. Take a break from all outside distractions and focus on the task at hand. You’ll get a lot more done when you’re not constantly interrupting yourself.

Debbie Allen

By:Debbie Allen / Speaker, Business Mentor & Author

Source: Want a Successful Business? Focus on These 5 Things

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Warren Buffett Says You Should Practice the 4 Habits That Separate The Best From The Rest

Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett.

Warren Buffett, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, turns 91 in August. Remarkably, at an age where most people’s cognitive functions have entirely regressed, where many are now at the hands of caretakers, Buffett still captures the world’s attention as the fifth richest person on the planet.

The greatest investor of this generation has amassed a following of millions who’ve learned, like Buffett, that long-term success is achieved by making smart decisions — in investing and in life.

Here are four Buffett lessons that will yield good returns when you choose to act on them.

1. Master the practice of “boundaries”

With all the demands on him every day, Buffett learned a long time ago that the greatest commodity of all is time. He simply mastered the art and practice of setting boundaries for himself. That’s why this Buffett quote remains a powerful life lesson. The mega-mogul said:

The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.

Buffett’s advice is a bull’s-eye to our conscience. We have to know what to shoot for to simplify our lives. It means saying no over and over again to the unimportant things flying in our direction every day and remaining focused on saying yes to the few things that truly matter.

2. Invest in your personal development

What assets should you be investing in the most? In a 2019 interview, Buffett said: “By far the best investment you can make is in yourself.”

As Buffett has repeatedly taught us, it means to never stop acquiring knowledge — the kind of knowledge that betters yourself as a whole person, not just as an investor.

Buffett’s lifelong pursuit of learning, which he shares with his longtime Berkshire Hathaway partner and colleague Charlie Munger, is the secret sauce of his success.

3. Model the leadership behaviors of the best managers

In Buffett’s 2015 letter to shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway, he summarized how one arrives at leadership greatness in a few words:

Much of what you become in life depends on whom you choose to admire and copy.

The quote was in reference to Tom Murphy, who taught Buffett everything he learned about managing a company. Murphy, who was Buffett’s biggest admirer, gave plenty of lessons on the best management practices that Buffett has adapted for his own companies, including:

  • Give autonomy to workers.
  • Delegate your authority effectively and wisely.
  • Hire for integrity.

4. Build a positive reputation

Buffett’s reputation is founded on his principled and level-headed approach to his personal and professional life. When it comes to building a good reputation, these are some things worth prioritizing:

  • Establishing trust, transparency, and fairness
  • Offering good value and high-quality products and services
  • Treating people with dignity and respect
  • Communicating clearly and promptly
  • Providing a service to the community

You should treat your business practice as a reflection of yourself, and that means being thoughtful and considerate of how your decisions affect others. If you embrace professional opportunities as a chance to add value to your community, your reputation will reflect your own personal growth.

Source: Warren Buffett Says You Should Practice the 4 Habits That Separate the Best From the Rest | Inc.com

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“Poor People Should Do This!” Warren Buffett ***SUBLIMINAL PROGRAMS*** – http://bit.ly/2jVoXRb ►If you struggle and have a hard time, consider taking an online therapy session with our partner BetterHelp. https://tryonlinetherapy.com/dailymot…. We receive commissions for referrals to BetterHelp. We only recommend products we know and trust. ►MOTIVATIONAL CLOTHES Be a Dreamer http://onlydreamersallowed.com ____________________ 👉Follow us on: https://twitter.com/dailyM_channel https://www.facebook.com/dailyMOTIVAT… https://www.instagram.com/dailymotiva…
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Post-COVID 19: Leverage 10 New Business Trends & Financial Incentives

There’s little doubt that COVID-19 has rapidly disrupted the way that small, medium and even large businesses conduct their affairs. But, like all crises and disruptions, there is never a better opportunity for moving quickly and making a profit. It is a fact that more millionaires are made in recessions than in times of ease. 

And the world was shifting to work from home (‘WFM’) before COVID hit. A survey from Global Workplace Analytics found 56% of the US tech workforce (75 million employees) have a job description perfectly compatible with remote work.

With that said, the following are 10 new business trends that can be capitalized upon. Just because things are being done differently and there is a period of disruption, does not mean that it is a complete disruptive process. Significantly, faster and more adaptive companies have been able to thrive amidst COVID, while slower organizations are suffering heavily. The following are just some of the benefits to be availed of.

Table of Contents [show]

Post-COVID 19: Leverage 10 New Business Trends

#1 – Reduced Rent

Working from home has a myriad of benefits, for both business owners and employees. Some of these will be outlined in more detail below. But, reduced rental costs are major. One of the biggest problems for all kinds of businesses is rent in urban locations. It is especially relevant for corporate outfits renting office space, which has a massive price tag. Imagine being able to completely cut all your rental costs.

Most business owners simply don’t see this. Yes, there is the issue of existing leases, but allowances have been made in the US for this, and financial help is also available. Rent is a major cost – use the funds saved from rent to foster an intimate relationship with employees who no longer meet face to face. Of course, this does apply so much with a services company such as a restaurant that needs a physical presence. But it will work for digital and certain other models.

#2 – Reduction Of Associated Costs

While rent is one of the major benefits, there are a plethora of associated costs that are also vastly reduced. If you are no longer using office space, then there is no need to pay for insurance on the premises, and no chance of having to shell out for an injury. You also have zero utilities to pay.

The cost of hiring and onboarding staff has further been drastically reduced. This is due to the fact that no longer are physical interviews possible, so more of the process will be online and automated. HR and recruitment is a very expensive process. But without a physical presence, there is less need for an HR team to settle disputes and organize activities (though HR is still certainly needed in some capacity in medium to large business models)

#3 – Mental Health As A Priority

COVID-19 has brought mental awareness to the forefront of employers and employees. This is an interesting point as it kind of works both ways. Many workers seem to experience feelings of isolation when working from home.

Their routine has been upset, and it is incredibly difficult to adapt. There are many more temptations, and it is so easy to simply leave the desk with nobody knowing, or have one too many snacks from the fridge! Many studies and prominent psychologists have alluded to mental health risks.

The fact is that people are stressed about getting the virus. According to Reuters, many COVID-19 survivors are likely to be at greater risk of developing mental illness, after a large study found 20% of those infected with the coronavirus are diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder within 90 days. Anxiety, insomnia, and depression are common.

Mental health is a vital aspect of worker productivity. And much of the existing mental health issues simply went unaddressed in the pre-covid era. However, it’s also worth mentioning that a significant proportion of workers are extremely positive about working from home and are adapting quite well, with significant mental benefits. They don’t have to commute from work, and they have more freedom around the home to do as they wish.

 #4 – Faster Implementations

Due to COVID-19, many organizations rolled out initiatives very quickly due to the need for speed. Because of the crisis, business executives are overseeing a wide shift in how organizations work, spanning tactical adjustments in areas such as meeting structure and cadence, and day-to-day management, as well as enterprise-wide changes in leadership and talent management, use of technology, and innovation. In most industries, 50% of more of the leaders surveyed are considering or planning large-scale changes in various sectors. Leaders are making many of these changes swiftly by necessity.

As one surveyed healthcare leader explained –  “We were able to deploy an enterprise-wide virtual care solution in a matter of weeks, because that is all we had. This rollout had been planned for over a year, prior to this.”

Many organizations realize the value of speed during these times of flux and uncertainty. Surveyed leaders most often cite the need to react more quickly to market changes as the reason why organizations have made changes during the pandemic. This need is reported significantly more often than factors such as the need to reduce costs, increase productivity, or engage more effectively with customers. If you want to take advantage of COVID, then you need to act quickly and with precision. This is an area where a business owner can make great gains.

#5 – Leveraging Technology

For decades people have been hyping up technology. But it works and has transformed the world. With the onslaught of COVID, technology is needed more than ever. People are communicating via messaging and video applications and need virtualized areas to collaborate. Security is going to get more sophisticated, with retina and fingerprint scanners to verify entry to workspaces. 

Technology can improve on speed and decision making, 2 pivotal components of any business enterprise. Many leaders view the pace of decision making as a priority for improvement, likely because many organizations find it harder to choose a path forward than to follow that path.

Communication and collaboration are 2 key areas that business leaders highlight when talking about technology. The speed at which accurate data is transferred is key. And to do this, there also has to be a clear chain of command where everybody knows their position. Superior technology can help from onboarding to payroll to learning to project execution.

#6 – Less Red Tape And Bureaucracy

With systems and management get established in a business, it’s hard to think of doing things differently. But many of these systems (and even certain staff) are surplus to requirements and make things even more difficult. In many instances, it is not the execution that is the problem. It is actually getting the sign-offs for disparate managers, all of whom have their own opinions about things. The end result is unnecessary delays.

Many business owners are finding that they operate just as efficiently, if not more so when the workers are given free rein to complete tasks on their own with only a light veneer of guidance. This runs counter to the management ethos that unless the workers are carefully managed, they will not get the work completed. A primary advantage of COVID is that it highlights what is truly necessary for a business and what was there simply nobody believed it was unnecessary before.

#7 – Sustainable Development

COVID-19 has woken the population up to the fact that sustainable development is necessary for the global economy to thrive. Sustainable development can take many forms, including:

  • Financial sustainability
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Social sustainability

How can a business owner take advantage of ‘sustainability’? There is a huge market for organic or fair products, perceived as those that have long-term value and a transparent ethos. Clients and investors do not put up with shady businesses any longer. They consider the social and wider consequences of where they put their money. This trend has been reflected in the socially responsible investing phenomenon and the emphasis on green products in recent months. The trend is only going to continue year on year.

#8 – Education and Upskilling

Never before has there been such a radical shift in the global economy at such a rapid pace. As a result, large segments of the workforce need to upskill and reeducate themselves. May college students find themselves in a terrible environment for their courses, and because change is coming so rapidly, it is just not possible to accurately predict what skills are most relevant.

But there is a definite upside to this. Some skills are definitely in-demand, such as mobile app development, AI, automation tools, supply chain management, consultancy businesses, and far more. It is the prime opportunity to pivot an existing business to make it more profitable. 

Pivoting refers to the art of changing your core business model to adapt to current circumstances. A Startup Genome study demonstrated that businesses that pivoted once or twice enjoyed far more success than those who stuck to their guns for the long-term. You and your employees can benefit from either upskilling or ‘pivoting’ to a new model entirely.

#9 – New Productivity Mechanisms

The fact is that COVID-19 has actually accelerated both employee productivity and employee satisfaction levels. The majority of independent studies are reporting this, and it goes against many employer fears of a lazy and complacent workforce. The reasons for this are unknown, but possibly in line with the fact that workers do better when they have the time and space to get the job done. 

They are also more free to do things that make them more productive and motivated, whether that is a walk in the park, a 9 AM yoga session to start the day, or simply a coffee in a local cafe. Business owners can trust their employees to work without breathing down their necks. And the need for managers might actually be reduced in a collaborative environment where workers are independent with only light-touch management.

It’s also a major benefit that employees do not have to commute an hour to and from work. This is precious mental bandwidth that can increase their productivity levels.

#10 – Direct Entrepreneurial Expansion

You can take advantage of COVID-19 in a variety of different ways. Consider the various business opportunities – hand sanitizers, masks, door deliveries, mental health, remove services, shared office spaces, the list goes on and on.

Fast-acting entrepreneurs are having a field day with all of the opportunities. Particularly, small business owners who opted for restaurant delivery fared quite well, though this option was not taken up by every outlet.

There are still many opportunities for expansion in the post covid era. Supply chains are operating differently, consumer preferences are changing, and there are multiple opportunities in niche industries including VR, AI, renewable energy, supply chain management, and far more.

Tech companies are still incredibly lucrative, according to a Startup Genome Study, with impressive job multipliers and innovations that can have incredible benefits to the wider economy. In contrast to entrepreneurs, business executives have a slightly different focus. When surveyed, business executives primarily placed an emphasis on 3 key areas:

  1. Making good decisions more quickly.
  2. Improving communication and collaboration.
  3. Making greater use of technology.

The Importance of Speed

Speed is of the essence when it comes to pandemics like COVID, where the fastest acting businesses reap the rewards. As things start to solidify, it is design, patience, planning, and longer-term foresight.

There are also many ways you can directly take advantage of COVID with financial incentives. These financial incentives are outlined below. Note that some of them, such as the Paycheck Protection Program, are no longer available. Read more…

Daniel Lewis
Daniel Lewis is an MBA accredited investment professional who wants to assist small business owners to gain access to finance. After going through many channels for funding, Lewis has found that getting the first loan right is vitally important for future success.
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Relevant sites that have important financial disclosures in relation to COVID include:

Summary of Financial Relief Strategies

As a small business order, make sure that you run through all of these financial tools, preferably in the order they are written below.

  1. SBA Paycheck Protection Program (‘PPP’)
  2. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Program (‘EIDL’)
  3. SBA Express Bridge Loan
  4. SBA Debt Relief
  5. Online Lending Options
  6. SBA Micro Loans
  7. Business Interruption Insurance
  8. Other Forms of Relief (Mortgage, Lease, Unemployment Benefits, Family, Friends).

Also keep an eye out for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, which is aimed specifically to help out independent contractors and small business owners who do not qualify under the existing infrastructure. The program is not operational at the time of this writing, so check in periodically through this site.

 

Dysfunctional Financial Markets Are Making Inequality Worse All The Time

Toy man looking up at another toy man standing on big pile on coins

The global market in government bonds has been bleeding red lately. “Bond market screams for help but no one answers”, says Bloomberg. It is “the worst start to a year in bonds since 2015”, according to the Financial Times.

Though bonds have been declining since last summer, the sell-off became a lot more violent in February. This meant that the yield on ten-year US Treasury bonds, which is inversely related to the price, rose by around 60% to peak at over 1.6% a couple of days ago, before falling back to 1.5% at the time of writing.

The US ten-year strongly influences the price of everything from mortgages to business loans in the US, and by extension around the world, so such a sharp rise has the potential to reduce borrowing and weaken the economic recovery from COVID –especially when there is so much debt in the global system. The world’s rampant stock markets responded by going into reverse in February as they factored in higher interest rates, as well as higher production costs because of surging commodity prices.

Bond prices can fall for several reasons. It can mean that the market thinks that economic growth is going to pick up (meaning investors shift their money into riskier investments). But it can also reflect fears that inflation is on the way without much accompanying economic growth, meaning that interest rates need to go higher so that lending is still profitable.

In the present case, it is a bit of both: the rollout of the vaccination programmes has made many observers more optimistic about the prospects of a recovery. But the rise in the price of commodities like oil, copper and coffee is more about pandemic-related supply issues than because this optimism has prompted a step-change in demand.

When Fed Reserve Chairman Jay Powell failed to announce any immediate intervention to put a floor under the sell-off in bonds during a public appearance in early March, it appeared to trigger more selling – a sign that falling bond prices have been more a reflection of fears than optimism.

Interestingly, in the hours since the new US$1.9 trillion (£1.4 trillion) US stimulus package has been agreed by Congress, the bond market and stock market have both been rising. Though there have been fears that sending US$1,400 stimulus cheques to most Americans will cause a further surge in inflation, the extra consumer demand will also prop up the economy. On balance, then, this appears to have been received as a net positive by the markets.

QE and perverse consequences

Any attempt to explain what is happening in the markets needs to be in the context of quantitative easing (QE). Shortly after the first wave of lockdowns in early 2020, central banks stepped in to help their national economies. They announced huge new QE plans in which they would create new money with which to buy government bonds and other financial assets. This drove up bond prices and hence kept yields (and interest rates) at very low levels to encourage as much borrowing from consumers and businesses as possible.

Most central banks originally began QE programmes after the 2007-09 financial crisis (besides the Bank of Japan, which began a few years earlier). This was primarily to help companies get access to capital to boost their business, in the hope that they would then hire staff, which would help to reduce unemployment rates that had been sent soaring after the crisis.

However, some companies took advantage of these low interest rates in another way: they borrowed cheaply and invested it in the stock market. With investors doing likewise, this has helped to drive the relentless rise in global stock markets over the past decade. It also helps to explain why these markets have been mainly climbing ever since the COVID panic sell-off of March 2020.

In the coming months, economies are going to reopen, but interest rates are to stay low. Fed Reserve Chairman Jay Powell may have declined to announce any new interventions to date, but it is fairly clear that he will only let yields rise so far.

This gives investors a great opportunity to continue taking advantage of the situation. So long as the gain from your investment in stocks is greater than the interest rate you have to pay on your borrowings, you are a winner. Better still, buy stocks in a company such as Apple whose bonds central banks have been buying as part of their QE activities. Apple is still trading at over double the lows of March 2020, even after the February correction.

But if you are not in a position to take advantage of this one-way bet, you are a loser. The central banks have already created a situation where major institutions like the biggest hedge funds and investment banks are achieving record earnings while many families are sinking into poverty on the back of the pandemic.

The endless stimulus is in danger of creating an ever more divided society. While it is true that the latest US package (and the support measures announced in the UK budget) will temporarily help those struggling during the pandemic, the shot in the arm is also another way of propping up markets that seem too overvalued to fail.

And if they can no longer survive without central bank life-support to keep bond yields low, the question is how to prop up the markets without exacerbating inequality. It’s not clear that anyone has the answer. It might be that a shift to a much more redistributive politics to offset the widening gap between rich and poor is about the best that we can hope for.

 

By: Lecturer in Finance, University of Bath

Source: Dysfunctional financial markets are making inequality worse all the time – here’s what to do about it

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Should You Use Your Own Name or Create a Brand Name for Your Business?

Should You Use Your Own Name or Create a Brand Name for Your Business?

A friend and ex-colleague of mine recently left her full-time job and started freelancing as a consultant. Like any freelancer seeking new business opportunities, she planned to create a website showcasing her past work and detailing her capabilities. But first, she had to answer a critical question: Should she create a new to represent her business or simply use her own name? Since I run a brand consulting agency with one full-time employee (me), she asked for my advice.

No matter what kind of freelance work you’re doing – from brand consultant to bookkeeper – this is a question you’ll have to answer. Using your personal name means presenting yourself as an individual contributor and keeping the focus on you. Coming up with a brand name, on the other hand, will require a thorough naming process and will create some “daylight” between you and the business. Either path can work, and deciding which is right for you depends on a range of personal factors. I’ve outlined five reasons below to take the first approach: creating a new brand name for your freelance business.

A brand name suggests scale

In the past, many companies took on their founder’s . Think Lipton, Ford, or . But these companies’ modern-day counterparts are more likely to develop unique brand names like , Tesla, or (For the record, Starbuck is a fictional character from Moby Dick, Nikola Tesla died 60 years before the founding of , and it’s unlikely Robin Hood was a real person, much less had any involvement with the financial services app.). Because of this shift, a unique brand name, rather than a founder’s name (i.e., yours) can create an impression of a larger organization, which implies more breadth and depth.

If you’re thinking, “But I don’t want anyone to think I’m more than one person,” don’t underestimate the disadvantage solo freelancers can face in competitive situations. Remember that people who’ll never meet you – whether they’re decision-makers or procurement personnel – may be making judgments based on your name alone. For example, imagine having to select one of the following brand consultancies: Catchword, Lexicon, or Sally Flakowitz. The personal name creates an awkward, apples-to-oranges situation you’re probably better off avoiding.

Related: Why Brand Name is Important for Start-Ups?

A brand name gives you room to grow

Speaking of scale, another benefit of a brand name is its potential to stretch as your business changes. You may not plan on building a 15-person team – but plans often change. Should your business become more than a one-person operation, a brand name provides room to grow.

This logic applies even on a project-to-project basis. When you take on a large assignment, you may need to subcontract work or hire other freelancers as teammates. When showing up at a client’s office with a colleague, introducing yourselves as independent freelancers who happen to be working together at the moment does not inspire confidence. It creates a temporary, noncommital feeling. It’s much easier – and sounds more professional – to say, “Hi, I’m Rob, and this is Sally. We’re from [BrandName].”

A brand name provides an opportunity to express ideas

What ideas and feelings does your name evoke to those who hear it? Hopefully, amongst your family and friends, at least, a host of positive adjectives are associated with your name – perhaps smart, creative, and hardworking. But for those who’ve never met you? Never heard of you? It’s just a name. Unless you go by “Sting” or “The Rock,” your name doesn’t really convey any meaning. It doesn’t tell prospective clients that you’re smart or creative. It’s not even a name you chose.

But creating a brand name allows you to say something. Some brand names are straightforward and descriptive (e.g., Best Buy), while some merely suggest an idea (e.g., Zipcar). Others venture into the abstract – they don’t carry any relevant meaning but can nevertheless convey a sense of personality, like Apple (simple) or Virgin (irreverent). No matter what approach your brand name has, you can use it to tell people something about yourself and the work you do.

Related: The Do’s and Don’t’s of Naming Your Business (Infographic)

A brand name may be easier to spell and pronounce

Some first and last names are easier to pronounce than others, but chances are the brand name you create will be shorter than your personal name (one word rather than two, for example). And since you’re building the name from scratch, you’ll have an opportunity to ensure its . While there are exceptions, most of the best brand names are short and sweet. Names built from one or more real English words are more likely to be understood, pronounceable, and correctly spelled than many people’s names.

If you have any interest in doing business overseas, you may find your personal name has additional drawbacks. Names that are commonplace in one language or culture may appear strange or unpronounceable in other parts of the world. Your name may lead people to assume – accurately or not – that you’re from a particular country or region and, whether or not it’s fair, that assumption may come with prejudices. English, however, has become the lingua franca of global business. A real English word or two is likely to be understood and pronounceable by many business people for whom English is not a native tongue.

A brand name may be more distinctive

The flip side of the point above is that, in some cases, personal names are so common that they fail to stand out. If your name is “Niamh Moloughney,” good luck getting people to spell and pronounce it correctly. But if you’re one of the over 11,000 Ann Millers on LinkedIn, your prospective customers may have trouble remembering you or telling you apart from other freelancers.

Reviewing competitor names is a critical step in any brand naming process. In creating your brand name, you can choose to use a different naming style, pick one that’s significantly shorter or longer than competitors, or find an initial letter that’s unique to the category.

Ultimately, this decision depends heavily on your given name and surname. How common are they? Are they hard to spell or pronounce? Will they associate you with a specific language, country, or region – for better or worse? Some people’s names almost beg to be used as brand names, like Smart & Final (named after founders J.S. Smart and H.D. Final) or Fox Racing (named after founder Geoff Fox). They’re short, simple, easy to remember, and have built-in meaning or imagery. Unless you’re lucky enough to have such a distinctive, evocative name, consider creating a brand name for your freelance business.

Related: 10 Secrets to Master Your Personal Brand

Rob Meyerson

 

By: Rob Meyerson/ Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer

 

Source: Should You Use Your Own Name or Create a Brand Name for Your Business?

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What Is Management 3.0 & Why You Should Pay Attention To Energize Your Teams

What Is Management 3.0 and Why You Should Pay Attention to Energize Your Teams

Jurgen Appelo is a software engineer, trainer, entrepreneur, author, speaker and traveler, who has been driving agility in companies. One of his works, Management 3.0 , condenses a team management methodology so that they can survive amid chaos and fragility.

This model, based on Edgar Morin’s so-called complexity theory, is based on the notion that a system – a company, a government, a project – is not feasible to analyze as a mere sum of its component parts; rather, it is the relationships and interactions that give it meaning and momentum. To graph this, imagine a network, with interlocking threads connecting each component. These threads are the facts, actions, decisions, and interactions that make up the world.

That is why management has been seen for several years as a system of networks and people, of dynamic relationships, and not only about areas or departments, profits and processes. It is a living system, not machines that systematically replicate the same result.

Principles for energizing and developing talent

In its 3.0 model, Appelo shares several principles that serve to support the work of leaders and teams in today’s changing world. Here are some of them:

1. Energize people

To achieve this, it is necessary to know what it is that motivates them and that is part of their life purpose: the more consistent it is with the purpose of the organization, there will be a greater individual commitment and team cooperation. For the psychologist and professor Edward Deci, there are two types of motivations:

  • Extrinsic: stimuli that are provided from outside the person (for example, a performance bonus, constant congratulations from the leader, etc.).
  • Intrinsic: those stimuli that are internal and relevant to the person, even when it is not their primary goal (for example, a project in charge). However, if you find a meaning, a why in what you do, you connect better and there is your own reward.

Author Daniel Pink offers a similar look at intrinsic motivation in his book “Drive”, where he affirms that most people are moved more by this type of impulse than by extrinsic. In other words, in the end and in essence, people care more about satisfaction than external rewards, although they should not be lacking, and he explains that there are three factors that new management leaders need to take into account to boost talent: mastery -the desire of each one to be better in what is important to him-, autonomy -the impulse to guide his own life-; let me mention self-leadership-; and purpose – intention to serve something greater than ourselves.

2. Empower teams

To achieve this, the author of Management 3.0 points out that it is entirely possible for each team to organize itself, if it has the confidence of the leaders.

At this point, it is essential that those who lead people focus on doing their job and not on micro-management and that teams participate in collective decisions on relevant issues. In addition, it is necessary for everyone to understand that they are part of a joint system, and not the mere sum of individualities, and that the knowledge of market needs is not in the hands of a single person, but that there is a broader perspective of their needs.

To empower, there are four lines of action that are strategic to generate relationships of trust:

  • Let the leader trust his team.
  • Let the team trust their leader.
  • Let team members trust each other.
  • Let the leader trust himself.

3. Development of skills

We already know that it is difficult for any company to achieve results if its members are not trained; and the leaders are responsible for enabling the conditions for this process to take place. Some ways are:

  • Leading by example: living what is preached.
  • Promote self-learning: appreciate personal maturing time.
  • Coaching and mentoring: as transversal support and support tools throughout the organization.
  • Training and certification: to raise standards against the competition.
  • Collaborative learning: internal development, where everyone learns from each other.
  • Learning from error: doing retrospectives and tests in controlled environments.
  • Measure the results: feedback in the shortest possible cycles; use of keeping metrics on information radiators; indicators agreed between those who participate.
  • Smaller teams: the author recommends no more than 10 to 12 people.

4. Improve everything and observe the team environment

It is key in the management 3.0 model to focus on real continuous improvement, for which it is necessary to facilitate change processes and model the natural resistance that may appear.

Some suggestions for leaders are to observe the team environment, what they need, and let it be known that you are available; find cracks or faults and go to their roots to promote solutions that the team implements; define clear and specific goals and have great communication skills, a key factor of every good manager.

Also, incentivize defining small victories or milestones that energize people; review achievements and not just failures; and it is also essential to recognize people.

The implementation of this leadership style implies a cultural change in companies that is not necessarily rapid, although it can be agile, if you have the conviction and vision to carry it out.

Ultimately, it depends on each company how far they want to go and on each leader, how much they want their teams to develop. Two questions that only they can answer.

By:

Source: What Is Management 3.0 and Why You Should Pay Attention to Energize Your Teams

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Many teams use Mind Maps to explore certain topics. Similarly you can use Personal Maps to explore your team itself. Personal Maps facilitate team collaboration and bonding in a rather distant world. With this video, you will learn how to use Personal Maps to break down the barriers of cubicles and longer distances, and then you may even learn how silly you were when you thought you had nothing in common! Here you can learn more about this Management 3.0 Workout: https://management30.com/product/work… Here’s a trick, instead of presenting your own, spark conversations by presenting each other! What are you waiting for? Try this 7-minute exercise out and tell us below how it went!
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