Insight News

Sep 02nd


What Did I Say? Soft skills matter

What Did I Say?  Soft skills matter


Your coworker stomps out of the room.  You look at the group and ask, “What did I say?”  It is not what you said that bothered someone… it is how you said it.  Hard skills are the measurable skills people engage in to perform their everyday tasks; soft skills are the attitudes and approach people take to communicating and accomplishing things.  Hard skills like counting, measuring, typing are trainable.  Soft skills are more engrained and take real effort to teach. 


Commerce Commissioner encourages military families to defend their financial futures

Commerce Department launches new online financial guide for military servicemembers and their families

The Minnesota Department of Commerce this week launched a new section of its website dedicated exclusively to providing financial tips and tools for military servicemembers, veterans, and their families.

“Knowledge is power, and information is often the best defense for the financial wellbeing of any family,” said Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman. “We know the stresses of deployment can have a significant impact on the budgets of military families. With a long list of uncertainties to navigate, it is essential for military personnel and their families to utilize all available resources to make informed financial decisions before, and after deployment. That’s what this effort is all about.”


Lincoln Ladies

Lincoln Ladies


Oscar winner, then nominee, Octavia Spencer from The Help along with actresses Pam Grier, Kerry Washington and Paula Patton were honored during the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood luncheon held Feb. 23. The Visionary Award was presented to Shonda Rhimes, creator and executive producer of the television hits Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice.

The luncheon was sponsored by Lincoln, which  exhibited its new MKS as the centerpiece of the event on site for guests to enjoy. Ten other Lincoln vehicles were made available for a VIP/celebrity shuttle.


Strengthening support to minority-owned firms

Supporting the growth and global competitiveness of minority-owned businesses is a priority for the Department of Commerce and the Obama administration.

And we’re making good on that priority. Last year, the Department’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) registered the best annual performance in its 41-year history. It assisted minority-owned businesses in gaining access to nearly $4 billion in contracts and capital, supporting the creation of nearly 6,000 much-needed jobs. Over the last three years, our network of 39 MBDA Business Centers, has been largely responsible for generating $10 billion in contracts and capital while helping to create and save nearly 20,000 jobs.


Tough Choices

Tough Choices


Left or right?  Big Mac or Chalupa?  Snooze or not snooze?  Daily life is all choices.  Generally, people navigate without agonizing over decisions they’ve made or even that they did make a decision.  But occasionally, people are faced with red light situations: stop-and-think choices that will impact the direction of one (or many) lives.

While marriage, genetic testing for diseases and some spending decisions rank pretty high on the impact scale, our focus here is career planning, so we’ll keep our conversation around that.  Which brings to mind the first rule in career planning decision making:  this is not a genetic test, marriage or purchase of a Lamborghini.  A career planning mistake is rarely catastrophic.  When deciding where to go next in your career, keep your perspective in check.

Human tragedy plus triumph equals ratings magic

I am always fascinated by the impact of human emotions on our consumer behavior – whether those emotions are inspired by tragedy or triumph.  Two television broadcasts made ratings history recently, one because of a tragedy and one because of a triumph:  the 54th Annual Grammy Awards on CBS and the contest between the Los Angeles Lakers and the New York Knicks, February 10, on ESPN.


Career Planning: From here to outstanding

Career Planning:  From here to outstanding


Poet, activist, novelist and playwright Langston Hughes said, “I have discovered in life that there are ways of getting almost anywhere you want to go, if you really want to go.”  For a jazz poet and innovator like Hughes, there were surely any number of places he wished to go, and went.  He invites us to go, also.  The key phrase being, “… if you really want to go.”

Wanting to go further – in a career, in a relationship, in any ambition – is common.  Who doesn’t want to improve?  Who doesn’t want to tackle new challenges and grasp the satisfaction of hard work rewarded?  And yet, people remain in want mode and only in hindsight recognize the opportunities they’ve let slide by.
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