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Выбор редакции
Выбор редакции
24 февраля, 18:00

Dissenting Voices Make An Administration Stronger

In 2005, Barack Obama and I were getting into an elevator in Chicago with a few of his Senate staffers.  Looking around at the different faces surrounding him, Obama remarked, “I love that my staff looks like a Benetton ad.” When it came time to put together his administration, Obama understood the value of diversity – not just gender, racial, or sexual orientation – but also a diversity of experiences and viewpoints.  He instructed his transition team to seek out the best talent from the private sector, state and local government, philanthropy, and non-profit groups.   Obama understood intuitively that if you want to address the myriad challenges that confront government, you need to have a diverse set of voices and perspectives around the table.  It’s especially critical to have voices that are willing to express disagreement with leadership, whether it’s a cabinet member or the president. Donald Trump has taken a different tack.   Judging from the wall of white men who appear with him at events not held at the Museum of African American History, it’s highly unlikely that the current administration will ever match the diversity of the Obama administration.  But if Trump is serious about achieving policy successes, and not repeating the failures of his first month, he would be smart to broaden the pool of political appointees to represent a range of American experiences – even if that comes with the discomfort of hearing more dissenting voices. According to press accounts, the Trump White House is vetoing candidates for senior agency slots because the proposed pick either was not sufficiently supportive of Trump during the campaign or had been critical of him.  Most notably, Elliott Abrams was nixed for the number two spot at State because of “Donald Trump’s thin skin and nothing else.” Apparently, personnel recommendations at departments like Education, Treasury, and HUD have been rejected for similar reasons. The Trump White House is well within its prerogative to prioritize the hiring of people who have demonstrated long-term support to the president.  But if government is to solve complex problems, the previous loyalty of potential candidates can’t be the only factor in whether they are selected for a position. In the Obama administration, we certainly considered whether someone was an early supporter.  But we also looked at whether they had a passion to serve, whether they had the right experience and skills, and how they would fit into a team.  There was no litmus test of blind loyalty. To be sure, not everyone made the cut for jobs in the Obama administration. But if a Republican wanted to serve, we welcomed them even if they had supported John McCain.  And we especially embraced Democrats who supported Hillary Clinton during the fierce primary contest. Given Trump’s outsider campaign, he is already handicapped by a West Wing staff “light on governing experience.”  His personnel team also has been slow out of the gate in announcing nominations, so many agencies find themselves with no leadership and with no reinforcements on the horizon. If Trump is unwilling to widen the circle of potential appointees, he will be relying on a team that, while loyal, is not likely to challenge his worldview and is far too small to run the federal government.  This might be a perfectly acceptable way to run a family business, but the failed rollout of the travel ban demonstrates why dissenting voices are needed.  And when it comes to solving complicated issues like health care and tax reform, Trump will need to hear a variety of perspectives, including from experts who have challenged him in the past. Some of Trump’s sharpest critics during the campaign were veterans of previous Republican administrations.  And, while Trump is intent on breaking with what he considers to be the failed policies of the past, he will soon learn that experience matters when it comes to navigating government bureaucracies and managing the crises that inevitably arise. For many of these critics, the tumultuous first month of this administration has not softened their opposition to Donald Trump.  But if they do have a change of heart and are willing to serve their country, the president would be well-served to welcome them into the fold.  It would certainly go a long way towards making his administration run more like a “fine-tuned machine.” Chris Lu is a Senior Fellow at the University of Virginia Miller Center.  He served in the Obama Administration as White House Cabinet Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Labor.  You can follow him at @ChrisLu44. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

24 февраля, 17:38

Intuit (INTU) Tops on Q2 Earnings; Reiterates FY17 Guidance

Intuit Inc. (INTU) reported modest second-quarter of fiscal 2017 results.

24 февраля, 17:30

Zacks.com featured highlights: Eagle Bancorp, Hostess Brands and Sanchez Production Partners

Zacks.com featured highlights: Eagle Bancorp, Hostess Brands and Sanchez Production Partners

24 февраля, 16:53

Forget Profit, Bet on 4 Stocks with Rising Cash Flow

Cash indicates a company???s true financial health. It offers the flexibility to make decisions, the means to make potential investments and the fuel to run its growth engine.

24 февраля, 16:41

Follow Driehaus & Pick these 5 Best-Rated Momentum Stocks

Investors with high risk appetite may think of using the Driehaus strategy to boost their portfolio returns.

24 февраля, 16:25

The 3 Simple Rules of Managing Top Talent

The general view in business is that top-end talent is highly sensitive to and motivated by compensation and that big monetary rewards are key to their management. There is a grain of truth to this — but only a grain. In my 36-year career, I haven’t met a single person truly at the top end of the talent distribution who is highly motivated by compensation. Not one. Sure, I’ve met lots of successful people who are highly motivated by compensation: CEOs who pump up the perceived value of their company to sell it, hedge fund managers who destroy companies for short-term gain, investment bankers who get their clients to acquire companies they shouldn’t to earn big fees, consultants who sell their clients work that they don’t need, and me-first athletes who poison their teams. But none are the kind of top-end talent who make their organization great for a sustained period. During my 15 years of managing talent as dean of the Rotman School of Management, and previously as cohead of Monitor, I have managed some of the best and brightest in professorial talent and the strategy consulting industry worldwide. Over this combined quarter-century of experience, I developed three rules for managing top-end talent. Treat Them as Individuals, Not as Members of a Class I learned this one by making a mistake. A top consultant, one of the firm’s 15 or so global account managers, approached me to ask for paternity leave (a benefit that’s now fairly standard, but 20-odd years ago was rare). I readily replied, “Sure. You’re a GAM. At your level, you can do pretty much whatever you want.” He said “OK” and walked off, looking sullen. I was taken aback: He had asked for something, and I had given it to him. What was his problem? It finally dawned on me that top-end talent doesn’t want to be treated as a member of a class — even if it is an exalted class. They want to be treated as individuals. This consultant wanted to hear: “We care about you and what you need. If paternity leave is the thing that is particularly important to you, we support you 100%.” The result would have been the same — unfettered paternity leave — but with a totally different end result. Rather than being treated as a generic member of a particular class, he would have been treated in an individualized fashion. Since that incident, I have watched this phenomenon over and over. Each member of the top-end talent class spends their life striving to be unique. It is discordant with them at a very deep level if you treat them any other way. And, conversely, it makes them warm inside every time they are treated as a unique, valuable individual. Provide Opportunity Continuously The biggest enemy for top-end talent is blocked opportunity, especially on the way up. If they are motivated to become top talent, they want to take on big challenges — and the sooner, the better. If they are blocked and made to wait for opportunity to be available, they will simply go somewhere else. This is, of course, something to handle very carefully. They may blame you if you allow them to bite off too much and they fail. But managing top-end talent requires leaning aggressively into giving them as many opportunities as you reasonably can. The way to win their loyalty is to be the provider of opportunities that enable them to keep growing and learning. Sometimes this means battling the HR function, which tends to want to treat people homogenously and limit opportunities to rigid time frames. You have to both insist on the desired outcome and take personal responsibility for it to make these first two happen. I recall getting intense pushback from the head of allocations when I wanted to assign a less-seasoned consultant to a senior role on a major case. I was told he wasn’t ready and that it wasn’t fair to others who were more senior. I offered to look for opportunities on other future cases for those I bypassed on this one and promised to take full responsibility for cleaning up any mess that would derive from giving the senior role to the consultant. Fortunately, it worked out well, and catapulted the young consultant into a position that eliminated all such questions about his readiness going forward. Give Pats on the Back I see a lot of managers making big mistakes on this front. Because top-end talent is highly driven and intrinsically motivated, their managers can mistake them for being indifferent to praise. It is just the opposite. Talented people spend all their time doing really hard things. To do what they do, they have to flirt regularly with — and actually experience — failure. For this reason, they need regular pats on the back. Otherwise, they become resentful or sad and drift away from the organization. In my experience, top-end talent rarely, if ever, asks for praise — at least not directly. So the top-end talent manager has to intuit when they need it. But it has to be done in a fashion consistent with the first two rules: It has to be individualized. The generic year-end praise will be a negative, not a positive. And tying the praise to the opportunity that has been taken on and successfully completed is what will make it most effective. These three rules, although sounding pretty simple, can be hard to follow. That is because most organizations, and many of the managers in them, tend to default to reliability over validity. That is, they favor a consistent, replicable outcome (like similar treatment, opportunities, and praise for all) over an outcome that optimizes their desired intent. At first blush, it seems that reliability is safer than validity, since the latter requires more judgment calls. But reliability is just an alluring siren call; the skilled top-end talent manager knows to avoid it. To the extent that you rely on top-end talent to produce outstanding organizational performance, you must treat your best people as individuals, find ways to give them opportunities even when bureaucracy gets in your way, and shower them with praise when they succeed.

24 февраля, 15:57

4 High Earnings Yield Stocks to Scoop Up Right Away

For investors with exposure to stocks as well as bonds, Earnings Yield may be a simple yet effective metric to use.

24 февраля, 04:09

Zacks Podcast Highlights: Can Companies Satisfy Their Investors by Satisfying Their Customers?

Some people believe that customer satisfaction is the key to outperforming the market. The people at ACSI Funds make their case for this approach in the latest edition of the Dutram Report, give it a listen!

Выбор редакции
23 февраля, 22:00

Obamacare’s limbo befuddles taxpayers

Republicans’ stalled campaign to repeal the Affordable Care Act is sowing confusion among those now trying to do their taxes. Many taxpayers believe Republicans have already repealed the law, tax preparers say, and they’re surprised and upset to learn they are still subject to Obamacare’s penalty for failing to have health insurance — a charge that climbed this year to more than $2,000 per family.President Donald Trump’s recent executive order targeting the law has only added to the confusion, some practitioners say. It ordered federal agencies to do what they can to ratchet back the law and, in response, the IRS said it would not automatically reject returns that fail to indicate whether the filer had health insurance last year. Some have interpreted that as a green light to ignore the law’s individual mandate, and Intuit, maker of the popular TurboTax, is now updating its software to allow users to file their returns without answering Line 61, which asks about coverage.But many experts complain that neither the executive order nor the IRS’ subsequent announcement actually changed the Obamacare insurance requirement. And while they readily admit the IRS is unlikely to chase down people who ignore the mandate, some tax preparers say they won’t sign off on client’s returns that skip the insurance question because they consider omitting information from returns to be unethical, even if the IRS is unlikely to do anything about it. All of that is adding up to a lot of uncertainty, plenty of inconsistency and some uncomfortable conversations with would-be filers this tax season. “Some people are quite indignant,” said Christine Speidel, an attorney at Vermont Legal Aid, a nonprofit, who provides free tax help to low-income people. “They don’t want to pay it, and they don’t want to believe the provision is still in force.” It is an example of the unexpected fallout from the delays in Republicans’ bid to repeal the massive health care program. Republicans have promised to immediately junk the penalty as part of their plan. But Republicans are deeply divided over how far they need to go to replace the program, and there's no agreement in sight. Asked last week when Republicans would repeal the ACA, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said “just as soon as we have the votes.”Meantime, millions of Americans are now doing their taxes, and the requirement to have insurance is not only still on the books — the penalty for failing to carry coverage has jumped. Democrats, worried about the penalty’s unpopularity, slowly phased it in when they wrote the health care law. This year is the first it will be fully phased in, at $695 per adult and as much as $2,085 for families, or 2.5 percent of annual income, whichever is larger. Last year, 6.5 million paid the penalty. Given the Republicans’ chesty rhetoric on Obamacare, and the fact that they now control the entire government, many filers assumed Obamacare was already history.“There’s been a little bit of education necessary for taxpayers because some heard that Obamacare went away,” said Mark Steber, chief tax officer for Jackson Hewitt. Practitioners also blame Trump’s very first executive order that directed agencies to “take all actions consistent with law to minimize the unwarranted economic and regulatory burdens of the act.” In response, the IRS said it was killing plans to automatically reject so-called silent returns that skip the question asking about insurance. Though it was sometimes lost in the announcement, the IRS said the underlying insurance requirement remains unchanged and warned that people who don’t have coverage can still be on the hook for the law’s “shared responsibility payment.”“Processing silent returns means that taxpayer returns are not systemically rejected by the IRS at the time of filing,” the agency said. “When the IRS has questions about a tax return, taxpayers may receive follow-up questions and correspondence at a future date.”Many practitioners complain the news media has misconstrued the administration’s actions as an indication the individual mandate has either gone by the wayside or will not be enforced. “It didn’t change the law one iota — and nor does this policy change the IRS just announced change the law one iota,” said Chris Condeluci, a former Republican tax aide in Congress and expert on the health care law. But Intuit says it’s updating its do-it-yourself software to allow people to file returns without answering the insurance question. “Beginning March 2, TurboTax customers can e-file their return without indicating if they had health coverage last year,” said spokeswoman Julie Miller. Some tax preparers readily admit the IRS is unlikely to pursue those who skip Line 61, given Republicans’ efforts to repeal the law and the IRS’s chronic budget woes. But preparers like Speidel say that makes no difference because they have an obligation to truthfully fill out their clients’ returns, which they note are filed under threat of perjury.“If you owe a penalty and you’re not assessing that deliberately, that’s a false tax return,” she said. “Tax professionals are not permitted to file a false tax return or encourage that just because the taxpayer probably won’t get caught.”John Dundon, who owns a small Denver accounting and tax firm, says he too won’t sign off on clients’ returns that skip the question — and that it’s costing him business. “The customers are saying, ‘You guys are a dime-a-dozen, and I’m going to go to Bill Smith down the block who’s willing to that,'” said Dundon, who also blogs about taxes. “I’m flat out losing customers because I’m not going to sign a tax return that is knowingly omitting information.”“It is dividing the practitioner community,” he said. Jackson Hewitt is telling its uninsured clients who don’t have an exception from the coverage mandate that they are going to have to pay up. “We are answering the question for all of our clients, based on their information,” said Steber. “The customer could be contacted later in the year for additional information like, ‘Why didn’t you put the penalty on there?’” “The law is still the law,” he said.H&R Block, which runs both walk-in offices and offers do-it-yourself software, declined to say how it’s handling the insurance question.“This is a complex issue and we are evaluating the appropriate solution and potential impact for our clients and tax professionals,” the company said in a statement. Though tax season is barely a month old, some preparers are already advising clients to postpone filing their taxes — and to request an extension giving them until October to act — in order to buy time while Republicans agree on a plan. But others are skeptical that will make a difference.Any agreement in Congress won’t kill the tax penalties owed this year, predicts Condeluci, because that could require millions to file amended returns to recover penalties already paid. Tax season began Jan. 23, and 42.5 million returns have already been filed. “It’s too much of a mess administratively for them to do it retroactively,” said Condeluci.

23 февраля, 17:32

5 Stocks Set to Pop on New Analyst Coverage

Many investors have immense faith in analysts' research as they fear that lack of information might trigger inefficiencies. So, it's a good strategy to bet on stocks that have seen increased analyst coverage over the last few weeks.

23 февраля, 17:30

International Consolidated Airlines Group, Pool, j2 Global and TDK

International Consolidated Airlines Group, Pool, j2 Global and TDK

23 февраля, 17:30

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Pool, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Kate Spade & Company and Applied Materials

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Pool, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Kate Spade & Company and Applied Materials

23 февраля, 15:59

Add These 5 Stocks with Low P/B Ratio to Your Portfolio

P/B ratio = market capitalization/book value of equity

23 февраля, 02:43

Trump’s 'Apprentice'-style hiring is upending Washington

The president goes on gut and instinct — and he keeps offering Chris Christie jobs.

22 февраля, 17:30

Zacks.com featured highlights: Lam Research, Teradyne, Rockwell Automation, Principal Financial Group and Stifel Financial

Zacks.com featured highlights: Lam Research, Teradyne, Rockwell Automation, Principal Financial Group and Stifel Financial

22 февраля, 17:30

Zacks.com featured highlights: Francesca's Holdings, Papa John's International, Chicago Bridge & Iron, Scripps Networks Interactive and Belmond

Zacks.com featured highlights: Francesca's Holdings, Papa John's International, Chicago Bridge & Iron, Scripps Networks Interactive and Belmond

22 февраля, 17:30

Zacks.com featured highlights: Applied Materials, General Motors, Citizens Financial Group, Chicago Bridge & Iron and Impax Laboratories

Zacks.com featured highlights: Applied Materials, General Motors, Citizens Financial Group, Chicago Bridge & Iron and Impax Laboratories