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Liz Reyer: How to draft a summer flex schedule that makes sense

Business / Business News /

Q: We are trying to figure out a good approach to letting people have more flexibility in the summer, while not creating an administrative nightmare (or too much latitude). What do you suggest as an approach?

––Suzanne, 49, chief operating officer

A: Match your approach to the needs and preferences of all involved.

First of all, figure ...Read more

Your Office Coach: 'Managing up' can be tricky

Business / Business News /

Q: Our manager allows people to bring their personal problems to work. She babies these employees and seems to favor those who whine and cry the most. Her decisions are not based on logic, but on feeling sorry for people, which is extremely frustrating.

Although I have confronted my boss about her tolerance of this unprofessional behavior, I ...Read more

Diane Stafford: Don't succumb to vacation shaming

Business / Business News /

Memorial Day, the traditional start of the summer vacation season, always produces vacation-themed reports. This year's theme is "vacation shaming."

That's the common workplace condition when employees leave paid vacation time unused because they're afraid to take time off.

An odd thing is that vacation shaming appears to abound at companies ...Read more

Not-so-high anxiety: States move fast to protect pot industry

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- If a whiff of uneasiness hung over the trade show that drew thousands of marijuana entrepreneurs here this month, it wasn't because they were just around the corner from a White House that has threatened to shut them down.

They had bigger worries, like sorting out the legitimate business ventures from the hype among row upon row ...Read more

Susan Tompor: Does a fatter 401(k) make a baby boomer ready to retire?

Business / Business News /

Retirement nest eggs can look healthier after the stock market rebound. But how do you plan for retirement now?

A rip-roaring stock market -- coupled with increased savings -- has driven up average retirement balances to record levels, according to a Fidelity Investments report.

Fidelity said its average 401(k) balance climbed to $95,500 in ...Read more

Seattle Zestimates are off by $40,000; hundreds of data crunchers compete to improve Zillow's model

Business / Business News /

If you have a house or you've looked for one, you've probably checked its Zestimate -- Zillow's best guess as what a house is worth today.

The number might help you determine whether you should sell your house, or if the home you're trying to buy is a rip-off or a bargain. Or you might just use it to see what your friend or neighbor's home is ...Read more

Gail MarksJarvis: Heading to college in the fall? You'll need a bigger piggybank

Business / Business News /

If you're heading off to college, prepare to dig a little deeper into your pockets. Borrowing money to pay for higher education is becoming more expensive.

In July, interest rates will climb on the federal loans students take on to pay for college this fall. Rates on undergraduate Stafford loans are jumping to 4.45 percent, from the current 3....Read more

Working at Kraft Heinz means competition, cost-cutting, and for some, reward

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- Certain kinds of people thrive at Kraft Heinz, one of the most ambitious and polarizing companies in the American food industry.

They're the types who can keep their desk clutter-free save for no more than two personal items, per company policy. The types who get amped up gazing upon charts of sales data posted on the walls at both ...Read more

Miami tops nation in home sales to unmarried co-borrowers

Business / Business News /

MIAMI -- A new study analyzing U.S. residential property loan originations in the first quarter of 2017 shows that unmarried co-borrowers accounted for 40.2 percent of single-family home sale loans in Miami -- more than any other city in the U.S.

Rounding out the top five cities in the study by ATTOM Data Solutions were Seattle (37.4 percent), ...Read more

Working at Kraft Heinz means competition, cost-cutting, and for some, reward

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- Certain kinds of people thrive at Kraft Heinz, one of the most ambitious and polarizing companies in the American food industry.

They're the types who can keep their desk clutter-free save for no more than two personal items, per company policy. The types who get amped up gazing upon charts of sales data posted on the walls at both ...Read more

Susan Tompor: Does a fatter 401(k) make a baby boomer ready to retire?

Business / Business News /

A rip-roaring stock market -- coupled with increased savings -- has driven up average retirement balances to record levels, according to a Fidelity Investments report.

Fidelity said its average 401(k) balance climbed to $95,500 in the first quarter, up from $74,900 five years ago. The average IRA balance hit $98,100 in the first quarter, up ...Read more

Diane Stafford: Take your vacation! Being a work martyr doesn't help

Business / Business News /

Memorial Day weekend, the traditional start of the summer vacation season, always produces vacation-themed reports. This year's theme is "vacation shaming."

That's the common workplace condition when employees leave paid vacation time unused because they're afraid to take time off.

An odd thing is that vacation shaming appears to abound at ...Read more

Rex Huppke: America's most-beloved workplace advice columnist humbly signs off

Business / Business News /

I was wrong.

I suppose that's an odd way to begin the final installment of an advice column. So let me clarify: I wasn't wrong about everything.

In fact, I'd say the brunt of the workplace advice and information you've read in this space for the past six years has been accurate. But I was wrong, or at least off a bit, in one of my central ...Read more

California farmers wait for Mexican workers they desperately need

Business / Business News /

The sun hasn't cracked the horizon when Alfredo Betancourt and 19 of his countrymen line up behind a packing trailer, knives in hand, knee deep in dewy cauliflower plants.

A tractor growls, the packing trailer jerks into motion and Betancourt and his co-workers begin their routine: walk, stoop, cut, toss. Walk, stoop, cut, toss.

By the time ...Read more

Can a new killer whale attraction help rescue SeaWorld?

Business / Business News /

SAN DIEGO -- A symphonic score filled the former Shamu Stadium at SeaWorld, the tempo building suspense as footage of an icy landscape in Antarctica moved across a 140-foot-wide screen.

A little off cue, an 8,000-pound orca named Keet appeared, speeding along the perimeter of the pool as waves crashed over where a crowd of SeaWorld visitors ...Read more

Mark Phelan: Volkswagen diesels: 'Get them while supplies last'

Business / Business News /

Two years after cheating on emissions tests catapulted Volkswagen into a global crisis, the automaker is again selling cars with diesel engines in the U.S., but the German brand's signature offerings won't be around too much longer.

Customers lined up to buy 2-year-old Volkswagen diesel cars when the automaker unexpectedly resumed sales in ...Read more

The Week Ahead: Data, doubt battle for Fed forecast

Business / Business News /

How soon is soon?

Federal Reserve decision-makers say they are ready to raise their target short-term interest rates "soon," according to minutes of their most recent meeting. A significant piece of data helping investors anticipate the timing of any change will be released on Friday in the week ahead.

While the next Federal Reserve interest ...Read more

Zuckerberg asks Harvard grads to fight isolationism, nationalism

Business / Business News /

SAN FRANCISCO -- Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg told Harvard graduates Thursday that they need to help others find purpose in a world where machines are taking away steady jobs and communities aren't as stable, leading to isolation and nationalism instead of people coming together globally to solve problems.

"When our parents ...Read more

Wells Fargo must guarantee class-action settlement will fully repay customers, judge says

Business / Business News /

Wells Fargo & Co. may have to cough up more than $142 million to settle a bevvy of class-action lawsuits in connection with its unauthorized-accounts scandal.

A federal judge in San Francisco said late Wednesday that he would approve a settlement deal reached by the bank and plaintiffs' attorneys but only if they agree to several conditions, ...Read more

Costco posts healthy quarterly results

Business / Business News /

SEATTLE -- Costco shares were up about 2 percent in after-hours trading Thursday after the warehouse giant reported third-quarter earnings that beat Wall Street expectations and showed solid increases in same-store sales.

Costco's earnings per share for the quarter that ended May 7 were $1.59, up 28 percent from the same quarter a year ago.

...Read more

 

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