Salem company makes tape for freezing conditions

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Must Reads
Friday, March 22, 2013

Salem-based UltraTape Industries introduced a new product to use in freezing conditions.

 

Court rules in favor of loggers in water runoff case

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Must Reads
Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Supreme Court ruled that Oregon logging companies and forestry officials were not required to get EPA permits for storm-water runoff from logging roads.

 

Unnamed company eyeing Lane County

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

An unnamed company that could create 230 jobs is considering Lane County among other locations.

 

Funding woes delay Portland's bike-share program

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Must Reads
Thursday, March 21, 2013

Portland's upcoming bike-share program has been pushed back to spring 2014 due to a lack of funding.

 

Portland's 15 minutes of fame

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Must Reads
Thursday, March 21, 2013

Portland has become a national media darling, but where is the city in its 15 minutes of fame?

 

Mediators plan longshore union, grain handler talks

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Must Reads
Thursday, March 21, 2013

Federal mediators plan talks between three Northwest grain terminal operators and the West Coast longshore union.

 

Bike companies team up to haul large cargo

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Must Reads
Thursday, March 21, 2013

Electric bicycle motor maker EcoSpeed and B-line Urban Delivery are collaborating to help move heavy cargo loads around Portland sustainably.

 
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Tackling the CEO-worker pay gap

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An SEC rule targets the disparity between executive and employee compensation, reigniting a long-standing debate about corporate social responsibility.


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Powerbook Perspective

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A conversation with Oregon state economist Josh Lehner.


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Dan and Louis Oyster Bar opens up to a changing neighborhood

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Editor's Letter: Power Play

January-Powerbook 2015
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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Streetfight

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On Friday, Uber switched on an app — and with one push of the button torpedoed Portland’s famed public process.


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