March 2009

Watch out for the work spouses

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
Growing numbers of people are finding spouses in the workplace, but these couples won’t spend their lives together, just the workday.
 

Economist Joe Cortright urges weatherizing jobs

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
Joe CortrightAs our federal and state leaders consider what form the stimulus package should take, they should put a premium on efforts that put lots of people to work quickly
 

Deal Watch: Solar panel firm XsunX bags $10 million deal

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
sun.pngWith its January landing of a two-year, $10 million deal with an undisclosed Oregon commercial developer, thin-film solar panel company XsunX now has nearly $50 million worth of contracts lined up and ready to go.
 

Wood products jobs chopped by one-sixth

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
WoodProducts.gifEmployment in Oregon’s timber industry has been declining for decades. Reasons include mechanization, competition from Canada and changes in forest management due to environmental concerns.
 

Bankruptcies erupt again

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
IndicatorsChart1.pngOregon bankruptcies ratcheted up in 2008 with business filings spiking in December and increasing 67% versus 2007 to 405.
 

Readers reveal their media habits

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
 

Vestas’ last promise of 1,000 jobs didn’t happen

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Archives - March 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
V90_Solano.jpgGreen jobs were the toast of Oregon in April 2002 when Gov. John Kitzhaber, Sen. Gordon Smith and Portland Mayor Vera Katz joined executives from Vestas, the world’s largest wind power manufacturer, to announce the construction of a new factory in Portland  that would create more than 1,000 jobs by 2004.
 
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Corner Office: Steve Tatone

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Seven tidbits about the president and CEO of AKT Group.


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Crowdfunding 2.0

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120214-crowdfund-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

A conversation with attorney Erich Merrill about the latest way to raise money from large groups of people.


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Legislative Preview: A Shifting Balance

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Democratic gains pave the way for a revival of environment and labor bills as revenue reform languishes.


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Free Falling

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121714-oilprice-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

The implosion of the energy complex: The best thing for low oil prices is low oil prices.


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Editor's Letter: Power Play

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

Old power works like a currency. It is held by few. Once gained, it is jealously guarded, and the powerful have a substantial store of it to spend. It is closed, inaccessible, and leader-driven. It downloads, and it captures.

New power operates differently, like a current. It is made by many. It is open, participatory, and peer-driven. It uploads, and it distributes. Like water or electricity, it’s most forceful when it surges. The goal with new power is not to hoard it but to channel it.

The authors, Henry Timms and Jeremy Heimans, don’t necessarily favor one form of power over another but merely outline how power is transitioning, and how companies can take advantage of these changes to strengthen their positions in the marketplace. 

Our Powerbook issue might be viewed as a case study in the new-power transition. This annual book of lists provides information on leading businesses, nonprofits and universities in the state. Most of the featured companies are entrenched power players now pursuing more flexible and less hierarchical approaches to doing business. Law firms, for example, are adopting new technologies and fee structures to make legal services more accessible and affordable.

This month we also take a look at a controversial new U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule requiring public companies to disclose the median pay of workers, as well as the ratio between CEO and median-worker pay. 

Part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law, the rule will compel public companies to be more open about employee compensation, with the assumption that greater transparency will improve corporate performance and, perhaps, help address one of the major challenges of our time: income inequality.

New power is not only about strategy and tactics, the Harvard Business Review authors say. “The ultimate questions are ethical. The big question is whether new power can genuinely serve the common good and confront society’s most intractable problems.”

That sounds like a call to arms. Or a New Year’s resolution. Old power or new, the goals are the same: to be a force for positive change in the world. Happy 2015!

— Linda


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OB Poll: Wineries and groceries

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24-winethumbA majority of respondents agreed: Local vineyards should remain Oregon-owned and quality is the most important factor when determining where to eat or buy groceries.


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Corner Office: Marv LaPorte

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The president of LaPorte & Associates lets us in on his day-to-day life.


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