DJIA: 17,683.58  -46.53 (-0.26%) | NASDAQ: 4,991.94  -17.273 (-0.34%) | S&P 500: 2,068.76  -8.02 (-0.39%) Markets status unavailable

  • Show Article Details

    Dixons Carphone Plc. * Connected World Services signs agreement with Sprint Corporation (S) to open U.S. stores. * To open and manage a significant number of Sprint-branded stores in U.S. * In the initial phase, Dixons Carphone will supply mobile phone retail expertise and proprietary knowledge to Sprint (S) who will open approximately 20 retail stores.

  • Show Article Details

    Xiaomi Inc on Thursday said it sold 34.7 million smartphones in the first six months of 2015, casting doubt on the ability of China's most valuable tech startup to achieve its full-year target. Chief Executive Lei Jun last year spoke of reaching 100 million shipments in 2015 but in recent months has revised the figure to a more conservative range of 80 million to 100 million.

  • Show Article Details

    Facebook (FB) jumped Wednesday after receiving a price target increase ahead of its earnings. Read More: 11 Safe High-Yield Dividend Stocks for Times of Volatility and Uncertainty. The social media giant got a boost after a Cantor Fitzgerald analyst increased its price target to $100 from $92.

  • Show Article Details

    Way back in 1999, an executive from Lucent Technologies named Carly Fiorina was recruited to be CEO of Hewlett-Packard (HPQ). The board of HP—that granddaddy of Silicon Valley companies—brought her in to help transform the lagging computer maker. She tried to do just that, slashing headcount, shaking up how the venerable old company worked, and embarking on a massive controversial merger with Compaq despite opposition from one of the company founder’s sons. Ultimately, Fiorina’s flashy style was seen by many as a poor match, and the merger’s results were underwhelming. She was out of a job by early 2005.In the years since, her tenure has been repeatedly held up as evidence of what can go wrong when an outsider is brought in to deliver a jolt of change. And it’s likely to get even more attention in the coming months, as Fiorina, who's now campaigning as a 2016 presidential contender, runs both on her record at the top of Corporate America—and against it.But Fiorina is just one of many examples of a company thinking its salvation rests in the hands of an outside savior. After Fiorina, HP has turned more than once to outsiders, including SAP’s Leo Apoetheker, who lasted just 11 months. Activist investor Bill Ackman tried to solve JC Penney’s retail woes by bringing in Ron Johnson, the high-profile former head of Apple’s stores, who adopted radical pricing changes that the department store's customers didn’t like. Even more recently, Juniper Networks (JNPR) recruited an outsider for its top post, only to see him last less than a year before replacing him with a longtime veteran.When will they ever learn? Despite years of failures, far too many boards and activist investors continue to desperately try to land outside superstar CEOs. Driven by preventable succession crises, they bring people in at enormous costs who are often completely ill-equipped to run the businesses they’re supposed to rescue.There are signs companies may be smartening up.  In 2014, 22 percent of incoming S&P 500 chief executives were recruited from outside the organization’s own ranks, according to the latest figures from The Conference Board. That is slightly down from the most recent peak of 27 percent, which was reached in 2012.And yet it’s still far above historical figures. In the 1970s, just 8 percent of S&P 500 CEOs weren’t groomed in-house.[Former IBM chief Sam Palmisano on why he thinks companies should groom their own CEOs.]Few topics related to CEO succession arouse as much debate as the perennial question of whether outsiders or insiders are the answer to transforming companies. Some corporate governance experts and management watchers are vehement fans of homegrown leaders. Others are agnostic, believing every situation is different. Still others staunchly believe only a fresh-eyed outsider can bring deep and fundamental change to a company. That’s particularly so when the business model is under threat or the existing regime has been so discredited that even the best insiders are tainted by association.After decades of advising CEOs and boards, it’s my belief that every outsider selection—no matter how much it's portrayed as a coup in the press or pumped up by executive recruiters—is in reality the archetype of failure.Bringing in an outsider (even an outsider who goes on to succeed) is evidence that the board, the CEO and the chief of human resources didn’t perform the first responsibility of their jobs: building a leadership pipeline that produces ready leaders at all levels of the organization.That doesn’t mean all outsiders will fail. Hardly. Searching around for a CEO may be advisable or even inevitable when a company finds itself in desperate straits. That was certainly the case when Alan Mulally was recruited from Boeing (BA) to Ford, or when Honeywell’s board brought in David Cote, who has engineered a turnaround at the former laggard.Yet despite their success, recruiting outsiders is the result of a critical failure to nurture and develop new leaders within one’s own organization. This sorry state of succession planning and leadership development has several culprits. One is due to CEOs who aren’t ready to pass the baton, and therefore don’t do enough to make it a priority. Another is that boards, CEOs and outside consultants focus too much attention on the creation of a plan that may look good on paper, but fails when put to the test. Finally, there is far too little attention paid to the succession process, and the relationships between the three major players in this drama: the CEO, the CHRO (chief human resource officer) and the board of directors. When companies get it right, it’s usually because those three have effectively collaborated on their leadership development programs, dress-rehearsing internal candidates for the job by providing them with tough assignments to manage real business lines. Plenty of evidence points in favor of insiders. According to an article in the research service Agenda, internal candidates hired last year as CEOs at S&P 500 companies saw an average share price growth of 5.2 percent in their first six months, compared to 2.5 percent for their externally hired counterparts.Other research has shown that early strategic changes made by insiders tend to fare better than changes made by outsiders, as well as that outsiders were nearly seven times more likely than insiders to be dismissed with a short tenure.Bringing in outsiders can also blow up a company’s carefully developed compensation structure, as they may require pricey signing bonuses or stock grants to make up for what they’re leaving behind elsewhere. Charlie Tharp, executive vice president of the HR Policy Association and CEO of its Center on Executive Compensation, has conducted research on the pay costs of bringing in outsiders. He told me in an interview I conducted for my book that a great deal of public consternation over excessive executive pay could have been prevented if only CEOs, CHROs and boards had been doing their jobs.“What’s really generating such great public outrage,” he said in the interview, “is the increasing popularity of high-profile external hires, which in turn is raising the cost of internal successors as well.”Reaching outside for a savior CEO may work fine sometimes, or even result in great performance every once in a while. But no one would consider either one evidence of a strong team or a good strategy. When it comes to planning for the next CEO, boards should focus less on finding a superstar from the outside—one who is often riskier, costlier and far more disruptive—and more on guiding a process that ensures it has the right bench of well-groomed veterans who’ve been cultivated from the inside.Noel Tichy is a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and the author of Succession: Mastering the Make-or-Break Art of Leadership Transition.Read also:IBM is struggling. But former CEO Sam Palmisano says he isn't looking back.Unilever CEO says he is 'ashamed' of his pay and has the company's 'simplest job'Like On Leadership? Follow us on Facebook (FB) and Twitter, and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes.             




  • Show Article Details

    A nearly two-month bidding war for Integrated Silicon Solution (ISSI) crossed the finish line after the chipmaker's shareholders signaled their support for a tie-up with China's Uphill Investment Co. ISSI announced Monday after the markets closed its shareholders had approved an acquisition by Uphill for $23 per share in cash, or about $730.5 million.

  • Show Article Details

    When Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos sent Amit Agarwal to spearhead the company's entry into India, Bezos' message was clear -- India is a big deal for Amazon (AMZN). Agrawal, who's vice president and country manager of Amazon India, was once one of Bezos' "shadows," an esteemed position held by Bezos' closest employees who tend to end up in some of the most important roles in the company.

  • Show Article Details

    When was the last time you memorized a phone number?No really, think about it. Besides your own number, how many can you even remember by heart now?It's probably fewer than you'd like -- and you're not alone. Out of more than 1,000 American's surveyed for a report from cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab released Wednesday, more than half said they couldn't recall the phone numbers of their friends and neighbors. And 44 percent said they couldn't remember their sibling's numbers.But why would they? What's the point of filling your head with phone numbers if they're all stored in a smartphone that's with you almost all the time?So instead, we're replacing the ability to recall specifics with the certainty that we have them stored somewhere or can look them up online later -- a sort of digital amnesia. In fact, more than 90 percent of those surveyed for the Kaspersky report agreed that "they use the Internet as an online extension of their brain."Of course, this isn't just about phone numbers. Rote memorization was once a staple of modern education: Students were taught the names of the presidents in order and all the names of state capitals -- or even to draw a map of the United States from memory like Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.).But now, that information is just a click or swipe away. And that's making us worse at remembering things, according to academic research on the topic.One journal article, published in Science in 2011, found that when people expect to have access to information online they are less likely to remember the actual facts, but more likely to remember how to find them.In effect, we are already becoming one with the machine: "We are becoming symbiotic with our computer tools, growing into interconnected systems that remember less by knowing information than by knowing where the information can be found," according to the Science article.That's not necessarily a bad thing -- maybe it gives us more mental processing power to think through things. And we certainly have access to more knowledge now than ever, even if it's not all stored in our brains.But there are risks to this brave new world of memory outsourcing beyond losing our ability to recall who the 15th President was. (James Buchanan, just in case you were about to Google (GOOG) it.)That kind of information may always be a click away, but the important things -- the personal things, like way your mom smiled at your wedding -- you want to remember might be harder to recall or find online. And if you're relying on your own archive of pictures or documents to keep track of those memories, the consequences of a lost, stolen or hacked hard drive are much more meaningful.




  • Show Article Details

    Shares of Corning are advancing 0.05% to $19.74 on Wednesday after the company today introduced EDGE8 solutions, its latest optical cabling innovation for data centers and storage area networks. EDGE8 is the industry's first modular, tip-to-tip optical cabling system to feature an eight fiber cabling design, according to Corning.

  • Show Article Details

    Sprint (S) chief executive Marcelo Claure says he was sleeping in Tokyo when he missed the huge public backlash against his company Tuesday over its policy to slow down video speeds on its new All-in plans.Now, Claure has reversed course, saying hours later that Sprint (S) won't make customers' streaming videos unbearably slow on its network.The kerfuffle arose when sharp-eyed folks looked through the fine print for Sprint's All-in plan, which is designed to simplify the experience of shopping for a cell service provider. For $80 a month — $20 a month for the phone and $60 a month for unlimited talk, text and data — the new plan promises consumers one single price with no extra or hidden fees (except for taxes and activation fees).But buried in the deal was a clause that said Sprint (S) would be throttling online video, a particularly data-intensive service. Video speeds at all times would be slowed to 600 Kbps, little better than what you'd get on dial-up, the company said in its fine print.That prompted outcries from angry consumers.@marceloclaure how did anyone in your company thought that was a good idea? 600 kps limit?? We live in 2015 smh Not '1992'Sprint (S) quickly backtracked."We heard you loud and clear, and we are removing the 600 kbps limitation on streaming video," said Claure in a statement and in a tweet. He added, however, that "during certain times … we might have to manage the network in order to reduce congestion."It's not clear what "manage the network" means, particularly since Sprint (S) voluntarily said it would no longer be slowing the mobile Internet for unlimited data customers. If Sprint (S) is saying it won't throttle the Internet — a vow that now applies to streaming video — what else could it be planning?I've asked Sprint (S) for clarification, and I'll update if and when I hear anything.Update: Sprint (S) says its two-year-old policy on slowing down streaming video will be ending for all of its postpaid customers, not just those on All-in plans, but a company spokesperson declined to elaborate on the "standard network management practices" that will be used by the firm. Below is a list of all current and expired plans that were affected by the slow video speeds (now no longer, as a result of Claure's announced policy change).






  • Show Article Details

    Welcome to Main Street Morning, The Washington Post’s daily collection of news affecting entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses with a special focus on policy and government.Here’s what’s affecting my small business my clients and other entrepreneurs today.WashingtonHere’s who will benefit the most from the new overtime rules.The Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling could have major tax and financial planning implicationsThe EconomyConsumer confidence jumped again in June.Spending for the July 4th holiday is up.The ElectionsChris Christie opens his 2016 campaign. This is his record on small business.Here’s an incredible video of Ted Cruz doing “The Simpsons” impressions.RestaurantsConsumer visits to restaurants have declined in all but a few countries, according to the latest research.Despite making inroads over the past several decades, women still face hurdles for advancement in the restaurant industry.Start-UpsE-cigarettes are a controversial but profitable sector for start-ups.Uber documents show huge losses.A health insurance platform for small companies raises almost $6 million. Start-up figures out how to waste less mayonnaise. PeopleThis hilarious chart shows why you can’t get anything done at workOnlinePinterest has started rolling out buyable pins on the iPhone and iPad.FinanceHere are a few secrets for cash flow success from a few experts.MarketingA chief marketing officer says data is the secret to modern marketing.EntrepreneursAn entrepreneur shares her year of working dangerously after resigning from a secure job.Meet the man who is a professional sober coach.Three ways introverted entrepreneurs can market themselves.An entrepreneur who faced depression, debt and failure shares how he managed to pick himself up and keep going even when the odds were stacked against himOpportunitiesCan you guess which small business industry is growing the fastest?How to expand your business overseas.TechnologyThe strong dollar is predicted to be the cause of a $200 billion drop in 2015 tech spending.Amazon Web Services is building a massive data center in India.Apple is told to pay $450 million in an e-book price-fixing suit.Payment service Square adds payroll to its ever-expanding offerings for small businesses.These are the best cheap laptops under $250.Around the CountryThe Girl Scouts of Western Washington turned down a $100,000 donation after the donor made a startling request.A young entrepreneur gives Baltimore houses a new lifeline.A German entrepreneur patents the word ‘”Grexit” for a vodka drink.Some small business owners in Burien, Washington said they are having trouble opening or expanding in part because of parking requirement set by city code.Around The WorldGreece officially defaults and the IMF says austerity measures would still leave the country with unsustainable debt.Meanwhile, Greek small business owners face worried customers and an uncertain future.In mid-2017, Europeans will no longer face roaming charges when they make mobile phone calls anywhere within the European Union.An AirBnB home in Australia is turned into a brothel.The U.S. and Brazil increase their ties on trade and climate.Gene Marks owns the Marks Group,  a Bala Cynwyd  PA  consulting firm that helps clients with customer relationship management. Follow Gene Marks and On Small Business on Twitter.News we should know about? Email us here.






  • Show Article Details

    Starting today thirsty residents in San Francisco and Oakland can get a 7-Eleven slurpee delivered straight to their apartment thanks to delivery startup Postmates. Postmates, which has raised $138 million in seven rounds of funding, wants to be your deliveryman.

  • Show Article Details

    Macy's (M) action comes as the retailer is seeking to boost sales and better attract Latino shoppers through clothing lines such as Thalia, named for the Mexican film and music superstar Thalia Sodi.Trump swung back at Macy's (M), charging that the retailer backs illegal immigration and that he never liked having his products manufactured in China.

  • Show Article Details

    How to create savvy consumers who are less likely to take on debt and more prone to saving? Some consumer groups say the key is to start young, very young.That was the main message from a council tasked with coming up with ideas for improving the financial habits of young consumers. The group presented the recommendations to the White House and Treasury Department on Tuesday.Teaching children about money as early as kindergarten topped the list. Helping people open bank accounts and manage money as soon as they start earning cash might also help to lock in good financial habits, the council found. And young people need to be better educated about their options before they go to college and start taking out student loans, the group said.“We feel very strongly that it’s just like learning a language or learning math or learning science,” said John W. Rogers Jr., chair of the council and chief executive of Ariel Investments. “The earlier you start, the more effective you’ll be.”The group highlighted some promising programs that are already in place and some new programs that may serve as models down the line. Some efforts focus on making teachers more confident in personal finance topics so they can pass the knowledge on to their students.Many of the programs aimed to teach people good money habits by having them manage actual cash. For instance, teens earning money from a summer job may get better at managing their spending if they open a bank account and get some financial coaching.One initiative from Operation HOPE, a nonprofit focused on improving credit scores for low-income families, asks kids to pitch their business ideas in “Shark Tank” style competition. The winners get $500, but only if they open a bank account and work with a mentor to start a business plan and a budget.The research report notes:When young people receive their first paycheck, they are primed to learn more about money management and have a unique opportunity to make a timely and informed choice about their new income.The results might be more lasting and go beyond the bank account when savings are for a specific goal. Separate research from the Corporation for Enterprise Development found that children with $500 or less saved for college were three times more likely to enroll in college and four times more likely to graduate.Recommendations from the council also focused on the crucial decisions young people make as they head to college, such as applying for student loans and taking out credit cards. The council called for further simplifying the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and creating a group of volunteers and online tools that can guide students through the process.Members said government agencies should do more to make students aware of the more affordable options available to them when it comes to paying for college. School officials should make sure young people know about affordable payment plans once they graduate.Of course, it’s difficult to grasp the impact of stock movements and the inverse relationship between bond yields and bond prices at any age. But teachers might make it easier for people to understand more complex matters in adulthood if they can introduce certain concepts early on, the argument goes.Think about little children playing a game with jelly beans that gives them a basic understanding of the power of compound interest, says Nan Morrison, chief executive of the Council for Economic Education, an organization that advocates for expanding financial education.The council, created two years ago by the president, was made up of members from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Department of Education and nonprofit groups focused on financial education.Read More:What age is best to start drawing Social Security benefits? Truth is, it depends.A quarter of Americans are one emergency away from financial ruinOne way to keep kids from feeling entitled: Hide the wealth






  • Show Article Details

    Depending upon whom you ask, Apple (AAPL) may have a Watch issue. In a research note primarily discussing the iPhone, Pacific Crest Securities analyst Andy Hargreaves noted that sales of the Apple Watch aren't as strong as initially estimated, with demand appearing to slow quickly. "In contrast to iPhone, anecdotal evidence suggests Apple Watch demand is slowing quickly," Hargreaves wrote in a note.

  • Show Article Details

    * BMW says regularly talks to telecoms, IT firms. * Talks are not about car development or production. * BMW open to partnerships, production chief says. BMW is open to building cars for other companies such as Google or Apple (AAPL), the automaker's production chief said on Wednesday, adding that there are currently no such talks.

  • Show Article Details

    Shares of AT&T Inc  were slightly down 0.01% to $35.51 in early market trading Wednesday, despite getting a price target boost by analysts at Oppenheimer this morning. The firm raised its price target on shares of the telecommunications company to $40 from $36, noting that AT&T's cross selling and new services can drive improved free cash flow growth.

  • Show Article Details

    Silicon Valley is the traditional mecca for aspiring technology professionals, but job seekers who want to settle down in one of tomorrow's tech capitals should look to the South, the Northeast and other cities in the West, according to the latest report from online job board and researcher ZipRecruiter.