January 29, 2013
by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews
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From the desk of Bob Meyer...
Barter Company Raises $214,000 For Newtown
Counseling services through The Cove Center For Grieving
Children will be possible for many Newtown (CT) families
because of the efforts of nearby barter company Barter
Business Unlimited (www.bbubarter.com).
BBU has raised $214,000 trade-dollars from the company’s
barter members and trading partners (other barter
Service Sector Growth Pushes Union Membership
Union membership in the U.S. fell to its lowest rate since
1916 last year, dropping to 11.3% of the workforce, from
11.8% in 2011. The reasons for the decline include: (a) new
laws that have reduced the power of unions in Wisconsin,
Indiana and other states, and (b) the growth of the service
sector, where organized labor has a small presence.
Book Is Updated
The 1995 first edition of the Hometown Money book,
has been updated by its author Paul Glover. Glover is the
founder of the community currency-system known as Ithaca
HOURS, which was established in 1991.
For more information on Glover and his book click here.
National Zanderboard Planned
Direct traders will soon be meeting for another real estate
and personal property session on the Zanderboard. It’s
scheduled for February, in the Atlanta (GA) area.
back issues of "From the Desk...” can be accessed by
free to forward our newsletter to your friends and
colleagues. We have a “box” at the end of the
newsletter for your convenience.
See you next week. . .)
What Is Your Domain Name
It took until the first
week of January, but the Colorado Rockies have finally made a
high-priced off-season acquisition that should leave their fans
happy. And while the “bad” news is that the pickup is not an actual
player that will help the team, the good news is that Major League
Baseball (MLB) is picking up the $1.2 million tab for the domain
name rockies.com from the Tourism Canadian Rockies portal. Thus,
clicking through that link now takes you to the official site for
the Rockies’ baseball team, instead of to information for a vacation
north of the border.
The sale was brokered by
Venture Capital Group, which reported the sale was the largest for a
sports domain transaction. Venture Capital disclosed last fall that
the rockies.com domain name, would be put up for auction along with
several other Canadian tourism web assets. The auction was expected
to garner between $200,000 and $400,000 for the site, industry
expert Domain News Wire reported in late September.
As noted, the $1.2
million acquisition is the largest for a sports domain. But in
comparison to prices for all domains, rockies.com is tied with
find.com and phone.com for 51st overall. The overall record was set
by sex.com when it sold for $13 million in November 2010, breaking
the previous record of $11 million that hotels.com had set in 2001.
Getting the rights to
rockies.com was a coup for MLB, but it came at a big premium. The
most the league had ever paid for domain rights was $200,000 for
angels.com. There are now only four MLB teams that still don’t have
the right to their nicknames + .com — the Giants, the Rangers, the
Rays and Twins. And one assumes the league would like to have them
all under its ownership.
domain domination, however, may be an impossibility, no matter how
much money the league wants to throw around. Giants.com is owned by
the National Football League, which means there’s probably no
possibility that baseball will be able to pry that one away.
Personal Burnout & Frustration
By Timothy Bednarz,
Many leaders will
associate the implementation of change in their organization with
elevated levels of stress, frustration and anxiety. These pressures,
combined with a typical staff reduction requiring leaders to
accomplish more, can lead to personal burnout.
It is important for
leaders to understand that large, overwhelming changes will
typically shake up the entire organization as wholesale
modifications occur in the way business is conducted. The process is
time intensive and traumatic for everyone involved, and people
require time to recuperate after the event is over
While quick or frequent
change can lead to burnout, leaders can use the strategies outlined
in this section to defend against burnout and frustration — even in
the face of ongoing change.
Effective leaders accept
that change is a normal function associated with their jobs. In this
way, change is no longer perceived as an event that threatens the
organization, but simply a normal function of everyday business
change will plan small, incremental adjustments that help their
organization slowly evolve and adapt. As a result, the company will
eventually see an increase in productivity and efficiency. It takes
a change in management perception, to reduce both stress and
pressures that once were associated with organizational change.
Anticipate rather than resist
When people oppose
change in their organization, they end up focusing their energy on
resistance rather than acceptance. This focus saps the energy
required to maintain productivity and effectiveness, ultimately
leading to burnout.
On the other hand,
leaders who accept and anticipate change learn to harness its
momentum to their benefit, using that energy to enact change
throughout the organization. Thus producing positive outcomes and
implement far-reaching changes out of necessity, it can be
overwhelming. Many of these changes include layoffs, which increase
the intensity of the situation and overburden the leader. However,
when supervisors plan for ongoing change, adjustments are made in
small, incremental steps that allow the organization to transform
itself on its own terms. When approached this way, wholesale
organizational change is eliminated along with the stress and
intensity of the adjustments.
The incorporation of
small, incremental changes into daily activities allows the
organization to grow and evolve while simultaneously increasing
productivity, effectiveness and efficiency. This incremental nature
of change allows leaders to build it seamlessly into the
Once the organization
accepts change as a daily occurrence, managers are less like to feel
pressured — which greatly reduces personal burnout from frustration
Leaders that learn to
accept and incorporate change into their daily responsibilities also
learn the value of experimenting with new ideas and concepts. They
discover that small changes can be tested with minimal impact, and
lessons can be learned from all successes and failures. These
lessons are ultimately incorporated into adaptations made by the
helps supervisors reduce risks associated with change. And less risk
equals less stress, frustration and anxiety — all of which are
associated with burnout.
(From the “Impact of
Change on Individuals: Pinpoint Leadership Skill Development
Training Series,” by Timothy Bednarz.”
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Managing Change — The
Transition From Chaos To Order
The process of
organizational change is complex. A number of associated factors
have the ability to impact an organization’s overall ability to
successfully evolve. Improper development, management, and
monitoring can result in the change-process spinning out of control
and creating chaos. In the center of this storm, it is the leader
who must then wrestle control of events and restore order.
As individuals are
making the shift from a management to leadership style, the entire
workplace is being buffeted by change. The leader is no longer
controlling the employee’s actions, but guiding and directing them
through involvement and empowerment. Properly executed, this should
be a smooth transition. However, ill-conceived plans implemented by
poorly prepared leaders and employees can turn the entire process
changes do not transpire quickly. Typically, organizations and
leaders both evolve together as they transition from one style of
management to the other. Leaders grow through the persistent
application of leadership ideas and concepts, as well as development
of their skills. The process is without an ending point, and
continually moves forward over time.
Leaders who find
themselves in the midst of a process that has swirled out of
control, must not be swept away by the tide of events and
circumstances. If they are, they will give up the ability to remain
detached and view what is happening objectively.
This can be challenging,
as they must regain control while dealing with the daily demands and
pressures of the job. Because of this they must understand that they
are staring down a complex and often daunting task. For the leader
in these circumstances, the first step is to retain or regain
emotional control and then proceed dispassionately.
It is simplistic to
think a single cause of a complex problem can be identified. Most
problems are caused by ever-widening and overlapping circles of
circumstances and events. What appears to be an obvious and
clear-cut cause is often only symptomatic of a much deeper problem.
When events appear chaotic, the problem can stem from more than one
area and each has to be addressed in turn.
While real introspection
is often painful, a leader has to identify any possible personal
contributions to the problem. Chaotic events often occur for reasons
directly stemming from the leader.
In certain instances the
leadership role was thrust upon an individual lacking the aptitude
and confidence to fulfill it. Once in the position, they fail to
lead and are unable to manage due to the organizational change.
Consequently, they leave a vacuum that is filled by disorder.
In other instances, the
leader may be new and inexperienced and thus attempting to
accomplish overly ambitious goals and objectives. Rather than
evolve, they are pushing change too fast, or expecting too much of
When the process seems
to be collapsing, the employee’s role must also be examined. In
certain instances employees did not receive adequate training to
fulfill the roles expected of them. In other cases, too much is
expected of employees too quickly. They are immediately overwhelmed
and unable to deal with the circumstances.
A lack of employee
involvement and empowerment in the process can cause major setbacks.
Their lack of input and feedback does not foster the ownership of
ideas and participation. Consequently, they may have perceived too
high a personal risk, which created resistance. Since their
involvement is essential, this created a void that was quickly
filled with chaos.
Consideration must be
given to whether the plan, underlying the process itself, may be
flawed. This can happen for a variety of reasons brought about by
both the leader and employees’ participation (or lack thereof) in
resistance and lack of skills and/or experience, can give rise to a
poorly conceived plan. Typically, such problems associated with
either leadership’s or employees’ role in the process will impact
the overall plan.
Ill-conceived timing and
timetables can wreak havoc. Inexperienced leaders might not be aware
of the impact of certain implementation-dates on the organization.
Additionally, attempts to accomplish too much too fast can overwhelm
the entire organization.
In certain instances,
management can undermine their own efforts by micromanaging the
process and issuing counterproductive dictates and mandates. In
other circumstances employees might not trust the motives of the
company, due to past experiences and existing policies.
Lack of management and
financial support of the process undermines employees’ ability to
accomplish their goals and objectives. Without proper support,
leaders’ efforts will be severely hampered.
Leaders must question
the rationale and premise for the process of change. Based on their
current experience, they must revisit the assumptions, facts, data
and other key factors identified at the beginning of the process.
They must determine if the logic and thinking behind the process is
still valid in light of their experiences.
Once the causes have
been isolated, leaders are often forced to begin the entire change
process again. However, now they have identified the sources of the
problem and have learned from the experiences of past failures.
With this base of
knowledge and expertise, they should be able to streamline the
process and eliminate many of the bottlenecks. However, if they have
not addressed the causes honestly and objectively, many of the same
problems will recur.
Once control has been
regained, implementation of the process should proceed more
cautiously, assuring that a solid foundation for change is
established and that each step is successfully and competently
achieved before moving ahead with the next.
Astute leaders should
enlist the assistance of key influencers within their employee pool.
These are the natural leaders who have the ability to persuade
others and enlist their support. If these individuals are sold on
the idea of change, and understand that the benefits more than
offset the risks associated with change, they will be able to
convince others within their ranks of the same — thus making the
leader’s job much easier.
The leader should also
ensure his or her employees have been properly trained in the
necessary skills to do the job. Once they have achieved this level,
they should be involved and empowered to participate and control the
process from within their organizational unit.
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