Posted by Dale Buss on April 25, 2013 05:02 PM
It’s been a long time since IBM was the safe default option for any company purchasing computer hardware or software. When Virginia "Ginni" Rometty was promoted to CEO 16 months ago, her charge was to put the once-indominable business services giant back onto a smoother path in a world that has been invaded by the likes of Apple, smartphones, apps and the cloud.
There’s just one big problem, Rometty recently told IBM’s 434,000 employees in a five-minute internal video message: Them.
All employees at IBM were told by their leader to "step up" by working faster and better, so that they more proactively and productively engage customers and stop letting potential deals slip away.
“Where we haven’t transformed rapidly enough, we struggled,” Rometty said in the video published on the internal IBM website and reviewed by the Wall Street Journal. “We have to step up with that and deal with that, and that is on all levels.”Continue reading...
Posted by Kristen Van Nest on April 17, 2013 12:20 PM
Last year, Starbucks declared its support of same-sex marriage, which resulted in a boycott by the National Organization for Marriage. The coffee chain hasn't backed down one bit, however, as CEO Howard Schultz continues to blur the line between business and the personal lives of his millions of customers.
At a recent annual shareholders meeting, Tom Strobhar, a shareholder and founder of the Corporate Morality Action Center, an anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage organization, suggested the boycott had a negative impact on first quarter sales and earnings. The ever-outspoken CEO swiftly responded, “Not every decision is an economic decision... The lens in which we are making that decision is through the lens of our people. We employ over 200,000 people in this company, and we want to embrace diversity."
Schultz then told Strobhar he was more than welcome to sell his shares and take his money elsewhere. While the remarks seem brazen, Starbuck’s stance on hot-button political issues and support of equal rights for its employees have been a part of the brand’s long-term strategy to increase internal brand engagement and decrease turnover. What's more, taking a position on causes that affect its workforce has had a positive impact on its bottom line.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 12, 2013 04:34 PM
AT&T has landed at top spot on CR Magazine's 14th annual 100 Best Corporate Citizens List, beating out other top Russell 1000 large-capitalization companies on merits including human rights and corporate governance.
Rounding out the top 10 on the new list: Mattel, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eaton Corp, Intel, Gap, Hasbro, Merck & Co., Campbell Soup Co. and Coca-Cola.
The ranking crunches 298 data points of disclosure and performance measures across seven categories: environment, climate change, employee relations, human rights, governance, finance and philanthropy.
Notably, 26 companies on the 2013 list were not on the 2012 list, while 11 companies have appeared on the list every year since 2007. For those that were bestowed the honor, many were quick to highlight the significance of employee participation to the success of the company's initiatives.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 18, 2013 04:38 PM
It’s hard to believe that American Express is celebrating its 163rd birthday today, as the iconic brand continues a spry and active presence, pushing boundaries in social media while as fresh and enduring as those half its age. Case in point: its #163candles hashtag on Twitter today.
Just last month, the blue chip brand teamed with that whippersnapper on a social commerce experience that turns Twitter hashtags into purchases. The sync and tweet with #hashtags lets users buy $25 American Express Gift Cards and products from Amazon, Sony, Urban Zen and Xbox 360.
"Based on the initial success of Amex Sync for offers, we know there is significant power in combining our assets with Twitter's platform to bring value to Cardmembers and merchants," said Leslie Berland, SVP Digital Partnerships and Development. "Now, we're leveraging our unique technology and closed-loop network to introduce a seamless solution that redefines what's possible in the world of social commerce."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 15, 2013 04:22 PM
In the never-ending quest to find good talent, more and more companies are taking to social media and implementing interesting tactics to discover their next great employee.
Most recently, MasterCard has launched a search for five eager beaver interns. Hopefulls must apply via LinkedIn with an idea of how to facilitate a cashless future. Applicants must then follow MasterCard's Twitter, since that's how they're planning on notfying the chosen applicants. The company even created an animated short to advertise the opportunity.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 13, 2013 02:23 PM
Plenty of businesses were unhappy when President Obama suggested raising the minimum wage, but Costco CEO Craig Jelinek recently let the world know that he’s all for raising it to $10.10 an hour—and the news isn’t hurting business, either.
Last quarter, Costco's revenue ballooned to $537 million, which is up from $394 million in the same period one year ago, The Huffington Post reports.
“At Costco, we know that paying employees good wages makes good sense for business,” Jelinik said last week. “Instead of minimizing wages, we know it's a lot more profitable in the long term to minimize employee turnover and maximize employee productivity, commitment and loyalty. We support efforts to increase the federal minimum wage.”Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on March 6, 2013 10:15 AM
Best Buy has joined seen-better-days peer Yahoo! by ending its flexible work-from-home program.
Of its Results Only Work Environment (ROWE) plan, Best Buy spokesman Matt Furman told the Star Tribune, “It makes sense to consider not just what the results are but how the work gets done." Best Buy will now exclusively move to a Results Mostly Work Environment (RMWE).
Best Buy's move means two things for Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer. On one hand, it's an endorsement of her theory that physical presence and proximity are needed to foster creative development and a healthy internal brand.
On the other hand, it's an endorsement of her theory that physical presence and proximity are needed to foster creative development and a healthy internal brand as the only way to save a doomed company. Simply put, ending flextime is the "amputate the leg to stop the gangrene" approach to management. A bad sign of overall health.
But then, Best Buy's health is no secret in its home country or abroad. A potential buyout from Best Buy's founder fell apart a week ago even as the retailer flails around to try and counter "showrooming" by smartphone-wielding shoppers.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 27, 2013 04:26 PM
The U.S. federal government still defines the act of marriage as one taking place between a man and a woman even though a number of states have made gay marriage legal and President Obama made it clear in his Inauguration speech (and other speeches since) that gay marriage is something he firmly believes in. “Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law—for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well,” Obama said after being sworn in on Jan. 21 by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.
Roberts will have a lot to do with possibly making a change to the way the federal government defines marriage when his Court hears two gay-marriage-related cases on March 26 and 27. Nearly 300 companies came out Wednesday to “urge the U.S. Supreme Court … to strike down a federal law that restricts the definition of marriage to heterosexual unions,” Reuters reports.
Considering the size and number of brands taking part, it will be hard for conservatives who have long opposed gay marriage to try and boycott everyone involved.Continue reading...