Company culture is a particular business’s set of values. It is apparent in the way they conduct their day-to-day operations, from how staff members interact with one another to the way company leaders encourage work/life balance, says Douglas Batista. Here, Battista answers a few questions about company culture and why it matters.
Q: Why is corporate culture important for employees?
Douglas Battista: A company’s culture is its environment. It’s the things that make a business either an enjoyable place to work or the stuff of nightmares. Corporate culture is largely responsible for job satisfaction, and perhaps even more so than salary. An employee who is not happy with the way their company is ran will not be as productive and won’t likely live up to their professional potential.
The US labor market remains tight with some of the lowest unemployment numbers seen in recent history. Most industries, especially those revolving around IT, continue to experience labor shortages, says Douglas Batista.
Q: What type of skills are employers looking for?
Douglas Battista: That depends upon the employer and which type of skill set you’re talking about. There are hard skills, which are those taught in school and gained with experience, and soft skills, characteristics that are linked to an individual’s personality. Sought-after hard skills include data presentation, SEO marketing, and data mining. Soft skills that never go out of style (but always seem in short supply) are leadership, time management, and communication.
Q: Why is the tech industry experiencing such massive growth?
Douglas Battista: There is little doubt that technology in all its forms is growing at an unprecedented speed. And that means more workers are needed to fill gaps, support current systems, and create the technological innovations of tomorrow. One of the most in-demand skills is cloud computing followed closely by statistical analysis and software engineering.
In August, Elon Musk announced his desire to take his company, Tesla, private. After this process, which is known as a leveraged buyout, Tesla would no longer be a publicly traded entity. Here, Douglas Battista keeps us up to date on the latest from Elon Musk and the Tesla company.
Q: When did Elon Musk announce his desire to take Tesla private?
Douglas Battista: On August 7th, Elon Musk made a public statement that he was interested in making Tesla a private company. Later that day, he sent an email to his employees explaining his rationale for the decision, which is not yet final.
Q: What benefit would Tesla receive by doing so?
Douglas Battista: First, it is important to know what a leveraged buyout (LBO) is. An LBO is the practice of a company’s management, founders, or others with a connection to the firm buying said company using outside funds, muck like buying a home. A “down payment” equating to 10- to 40 percent is almost always required. Usually, the money is borrowed using the company’s projected cash flow as security. Musk noted that pulling out of public trading would protect Tesla from volatile market shifts.
President Donald Trump made news recently when he suggested, in what is now being referred to as the sunset clause, that NAFTA – the North American Free Trade Agreement – be ended within the next five years.
According to Douglas Battista, Mexican and Canadian officials continue insist that NAFTA should be a trilateral agreement. The two countries recently converged to state their opposition of the proposed ending. NAFTA, which went into effect 24 years ago, allows tariff-free trade on most goods manufactured and sold within the three North American nations.
US President Donald Trump has been vocal throughout his administration in his belief that NAFTA does not serve the interests of the US people. Douglas Battista notes that as of July 2018, talks were planned between Mexico and Canada and the potential for carrying on the agreement between the two countries is a possibility. However, Mexican officials have also planned meetings in the United States to ensure the agreement remains intact from north to south.
The generation coined “millennials” has finally taken over the world of business, says Douglas Battista. And while many traditionalists believe these tech-savvy-social-media-loving young adults walk around with a silver spoon in one hand and a trophy in the other, today’s 20-somethings are more able and adaptable than they are given credit for.
Q: Who are the millennials?
Douglas Battista: Generally speaking, a millennial is an individual born between the mid-1980s and the mid-2000s.
Q: How are they different from other generations?
Douglas Battista: Millennials are the first generation to grow up with technology as we know it today. Even persons born in 1980 remember rotary phones and console TVs that were large enough to be a piece of furniture. This group is (for now) the most comfortable with technology and thinks very little about how iPhones and tablets changes the world. For them, having access to information 100% of the time is normal. Millennials also tend to believe in avoiding most face-to-face interactions, opting to put “pointless” meeting time to better use solving problems or simply getting things done.
In today’s always-on digital society, sleep has become an elusive luxury. There are a number of reasons for this lack of rest but experts agree that using mobile devices right before bedtime is a significant contributor. Here, Jenny Craig executive Douglas Battista shares his insight on the link between Instagram & insomnia and Facebook & fatigue.
Q: How common is sleep deprivation?
Douglas Battista: Insomnia is a common complaint with more than three million cases diagnosed each year with an untold number of sufferers failing to seek treatment. It is estimated that insomnia results in more than $63 billion in lost productivity annually in the United States alone.
While the U.S. seems to be well out of the recession, many retail stores are still closing their doors, says Douglas Battista. However, the culprit isn’t a cash flow crunch but a matter of convenience. Online shopping continues to gain speed as consumers can browse virtual aisles from the comfort of their homes. However, there are a few key benefits of a brick-and-mortar shopping experience.
Retail locations cut out the middleman.
According to Douglas Battista, retailers that sell on Amazon, Etsy, and the like must also pay a commission to those sites for making the products available. This can drive higher costs and make it more difficult to move products as many online retail sites have multiple vendors selling the same items.