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L. Denise Jackson

Founder & CEO,

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What do you think is the biggest mistake corporate America has made in the last 5 years

Either answer with one word or phrase and if you choose to explain, that would be great.

Cutting training and development. Not investing in employees results in...

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    Aug 27 2012: The professional business executive. Those guys that are constantly hopping from one company to another and seem to get payed a fortune even though the company they run makes a loss. Their priority is negotiating the best remunerations package possible which in many cases means coming up with a way to artificially inflate the share price of the company so they can cash in the stock options they negotiated into their contract. It really all stems from trading shares as a commodity on the stock market. It gives a company the ability to create money from nothing and vice versa. Free-market is supposed to be about creating something that others will buy off you. It has become the quest to create the impression of value where there is none.
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      Aug 27 2012: You assume that the customers are stupid and that they cannot discern value, you also assume that the guys on the board who decide who to hire are stupid and gullible. Both assumptions are obtuse.

      Customers are smart if they are good at one thing it is determining what product is best suited to their needs.

      Secondly a skilled administrator/executive can break a company or it can rocket the company. Example John Sculley who was the CEO of Apple, fired Stephen Jobs in 1985 and ran the company into the ground. Apple rehired Stephen Jobs and Apple is now the most valuable company in the world. Now you obtusely carp about a ceo making a few million while at the same time makes his company 100's or 1000's of millions. Let me see now who do I want to pick the next CEO the thrifty guy or the guy who knows CEO talent and is willing to spend what it takes to get that talent?
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        Aug 27 2012: Apple is actually a perfect example of what I mean when I say the impression of value where there is none. For all the marketing hype that surrounds Apple I can only think of one Apple product that does its job better than any competitor, and that's a piece of software called iTunes. In AUS we laugh behind the backs of Apple hardware users because we can by superior hardware for a quarter of the cost direct from Asia.
        Regarding the guys on the board. As they are all shareholders a substantial increase in the share price is always going to be their main goal and share price is rarely a good measure of the real world value of a company. If it was we wouldn't have stock market crashes would we?
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          Aug 27 2012: What part of the most valuable company in the world did you not understand?
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        Aug 27 2012: Check out the Apple v Samsung result. Just the latest in a long line of US companies using US patent laws (which don't recognise patents held outside the US) as a form of protectionism. As a mountainbiker the Horst link saga in legend. US manufacturer Specialized managed to buy a patent to a design that had been in common usage worldwide for over ten years. The end result being US citizens couldn't buy most of the best bikes available to the rest of us.
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          Aug 27 2012: Thank you Peter!
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          Aug 27 2012: I don't have time to read up on that right now. But there 2 side to this story and the Asian countries are not exactly renowned for their integrity regarding this subject.
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          Aug 27 2012: God forbid that anyone should entertain new FACTS!

          Peter you are aware that Randians NEVER look up facts. They are the very definition of those Wall St. guys who almost brought down the world economy.

          Greenspan was a Randian.

          Thanks for that good information- we need it if we are going to change thinking patterns.
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        Aug 27 2012: When the Apple bubble bursts I'm sure the US government will bail them out too.
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          Aug 27 2012: Ah yes, yet more conjecture.... Yawn

          I think the politicians especially O and his record with GM and Solyndra are done with bailouts if they want to get reelected.
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          Aug 27 2012: YAAAAAAAAAAAWWN! Rudeness appears to be the new hidy hole of the Randians.
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        Aug 27 2012: Surely the most valuable company in the world will be deemed "too big to fail".
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        Aug 27 2012: conjecture is how you prepare for possible future events. Perhaps if some one had entered into some conjecture regarding the long term viability of sub-prime mortgages we wouldn't be in this mess.
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          Aug 27 2012: "conjecture is how you prepare for possible future events. "

          And you are a science teacher, interesting ( I learned this word from Denise)

          Regarding the sub primes yup the evil POTUS Bush went before congress I think it was 17 times about this problem. Ultimately I blame us for allowing scum like Franks and Dodd to exist in congress. But since your country is perfect you can gloat for now....
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          Aug 27 2012: How would you know Pat? You made it clear above that the facts are beneath you.
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        Aug 27 2012: Making predictions and testing their veracity through experiment and observation is the foundation of science.
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          Aug 27 2012: conjecture = Inference or judgment based on inconclusive or incomplete evidence; guesswork.

          I can see where this would be a part of the scientific process but it sure as hell doesn't predict anything regarding economics.
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          Aug 27 2012: Peter, to your Lehming Brothers comment is (and yes, I do know that it is Lehman) timely and crucial to breaking through the rhetoric. Hallelujiah!

          You know that he and Greenspan were buddies.
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      Aug 27 2012: Peter when I personally witness the length of time on the interview and the length on the exit package negotiations...it was really eye-opening for me. I just sat silent and was like huh? seriously? in my mind because it was ridiculous and when they don't do anything but suck up the budget, move everything to such a disarray and they just walk away....I just want to scream "AND WHERE IS THE PROFESSIONAL MATURITY IN THIS?"
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        Aug 27 2012: What is remarkable to me is that you talk about something that is trivial and miss the elephant of does the CEO make the company money or not???
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          Aug 27 2012: The CEO at Lehman Brothers still got his bonus.
          And he amassed a total of over 500 million in his personal fortune by artificially propping up the share price of Lehman brothers only for the whole thing to collapse and take the US economy with it. Well done him!
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          Aug 27 2012: Peter the lack of need for me to enter into the minutae does not make what I am saying trivial. The CEO is supposed to make money for the company through approach or strategies to bring in new business and expand their products and services, collaborations and ventures. Of course, all CEOs are not made the same and yes I can thankfully say that I worked for both types. The few big boys gone bad are not indicative of the major, they are simply highlighted in the media and most known. Are there CEOs and executives that have foregone raises and bonuses to ensure people don't lose their jobs? Sure. I have worked for those too.

          With rises of healthcare needs and taxes and cuts in business tax breaks and the bleak financial future that most people are not aware of, there are some greedy people out there. The best weapon may sound cliche but financial education is the key for "working people" to even have a chance where they don't have to work until they day they die.
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        Aug 27 2012: I know it would be hard to imagine but there is just a shade more to it than that...

        Of course there are execs who grab a golden parachute on the way out, so what.

        Refer back to my post about how valuable a CEO is, as they produce more jobs and more growth than a whole bunch of us.
        • Aug 27 2012: Yes, because with CEO's firmly in control of government, there are now more jobs and growth than ever.
          Tired old boring argument for even more failure. Yawn.
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        Aug 27 2012: We are making each other yawn. Conjecture is just a ride on the merry go around.
        • Aug 27 2012: You might want to branch out and use a thesaurus. Barking Conjecture, Conjecture like a Sea World sea lion at every comment is boring. Instead why don't you enlighten the masses with some knowledge about something, anything.
          Perhaps you could expound upon why O is so horrible for gambling a few billion on GM and Solyndra, yet Bush is Wyllie Coyote super genius for implementing the Bush tax cuts or spending hundreds of billions on Tarp bailouts.
          Something, anything.
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        Aug 27 2012: The biggest reason for people at all levels to remain silent is that they still harbour the hope that if they just play along, they will get into those positions of power. I have never seen it work that way so I cannot diminish Peter's attempt to educate. What you see as common knowledge does not appear to be that to me. Many people listen to Beyonce and Shakira rather than read the business pages or even listen to diatribes on talk radio or god forbid some TV news sources./

        Companies with grasping, greedy CEOs head a culture of such people generally and the people who pay for that are always front line employees who get pink slips and or customers who see products they count on eliminated because they do not make sufficient revenue in ANOTHER country. If there happens to be one of those "work for the year for a buck CEOs" i bet he has an MBA in marketing for he is not going unrewarded - PLEASE! It is a good publicity stunt but I do not think even he thinks anyone buys that for long.

        As you rightly point out though, we have MANY issues to address but we have to start somewhere and I like the idea of saving half a million in CEO pay outs rather than cutting the liveihood on half a million people. I like the idea of one personat the top (What ever happened to the BUCK STOPS HERE idea (?)) taking the hit for a change instead of everyone at the bottom.

        I think that should be the new meaning of FISCAL DISCIPLINE.
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        Aug 27 2012: Hi Denise. I do fully appreciate the roll of a good CEO and the majority of them do a good job but for me economics is fairly universal (company, country, personal). There doesn't seem to be the same level of alarm when the paper value of a company grows unsustainably as there is when the GDP of a country does the same thing. The Lehman brother's situation to me seems like the same thing as if China let its economy grow at 20%pa without trying to control it. The inevitable crash is such an obvious outcome I don't understand how some companies seem to get away with letting it happen.

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