Brian Banmiller's blog

Network News Re-runs

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Remember when the main goal of network TV news divisions was to fight to make sure they broke the big story before the competition? Now it seems they are falling all over each other to make sure you see that big story, over and over again.

When I started out in local television news, it was considered heresy to run the same story twice. If you could not find enough stories to fill a newscast you just weren’t good enough. How times and budgets have changed.  read more »

Trust: Can it make a Comeback?

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I may be dating myself but I actually do remember when deals were closed with a handshake. And when someone said “My word is my bond” you simply believed it. Or when a customer said “The check is in the mail” it really was. Trust was the grease that made the wheels of commerce turn more efficiently.

Not anymore. And that lack of trust is threatening to deal a body blow to our way of life.

Certainly one can argue that greed and deceit have been part of business dealings since the dawn of commerce. And maybe our 24 hour news cycle just makes us more aware of human weakness. But somehow we never dreamed that lying, cheating and stealing could get so rampant as to permanently damage or bring down the entire U-S economy.

Now I am not so sure.  read more »


On Jan. 31, Steve Ballmer, CEO of the software giant Microsoft, sent a letter to the board of directors of Yahoo, offering to buy the Web company for $31 a share — a 62% premium to what the stock was trading for at the time. Yahoo rebuffed the offer, saying it vastly understated what the company was worth. Since then, Yahoo has watched its shares become worth 60% less, as investors grow ever-more-disenchanted with how the firm stacks up to Google in the game of squeezing ad revenue from the Internet. In November, Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang stepped down and the company made overtures that it might be open to a Microsoft deal. Ballmer has said in no uncertain terms that he's no longer interested in buying Yahoo.


Flying Private Not So Profitable


AvWeb, one of aviations leading independent aviation news sources, had this interesting article on its daily web site. It shows just how cyclical the aviation business is, and how it reflects the boom-bust cycles of our economy.

“The argument for business jets as essential tools for business may see some conflicts in tight economic times as businesses seeking to control costs are selling their jets and corporate jet brokers watch their inventories soar. Where manufacturers recently had waiting lists of people seeking positions on non-resalable deposit lists the trend has now reversed.  read more »

Professor Auto Worker, Ph.D

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I receive a lot of opinionated e-mails from friends and business associates who document their passionate positions on issues of the day with facts and figures gleaned from related web sites to bolster their views.

Sometimes it is difficult to trace the origin and validity of such information in our blog infested environment, as e-mails are passed on to others at the click of a mouse. So I most often take a pass at passing them on.

But I did receive an interesting e-mail yesterday that I think worthy of forwarding, with the caveat that I do not know the true source of all the material, or its original author. Still, I think it offers a view worth considering in part because this issue is dominating business news. So here goes:  read more »

Preparing For The Worst

In this economy layoffs are becoming rampant but that doesn’t mean people are prepared for them.

It’s been a year of bad news for the U.S. economy and things have yet to turn around. Currently 6.7 percent of people are without work and thousands are applying for a handful of jobs. People in all industries from publishing to financing are being laid off. The big three automakers have announced they are slowing down production and temporarily laying-off all employees.

Camelia Lim is a regional Vice President at Robert half International who works to get people temporary or full time jobs. She says if you suspect a lay-off consider other options within the company.  read more »

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Sacrifices Will Be Made

It’s that time of year for celebrations and bonuses. But this year you shouldn’t get too excited.

With the country in recession sacrifices are being made everywhere. Families are cutting back on vacations, Christmas shopping is at its lowest level since the early 90’s and budgets are tight. Employers are also jumping on the sacrificial wagon, so you may be noticing more changes around the office.

So how do you deal with this in a professional way? Camelia Lim is a Vice President at staffing and consulting firm Robert Half International and says it’s all about your attitude.  read more »

Not So Happy New Year

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I hate to be yet another pessimistic journalist more interested in dishing out bad news than trying to find a silver lining somewhere in this bad economy. But unfortunately, any silver lining seems to quickly get tarnished.

This recession will indeed be long and harsh. The reason is simple. The worst is yet to be.

Some retailers who are hanging on through the Christmas season will not survive into the New Year. They will shutter their doors and stiff their landlords. That will have a trickledown effect in commercial Real Estate, as shopping mall operators and developers realize they will not have the money to re-finance loans coming due.  read more »

Power From Above

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On the first day God created light. Now one church community is using that light to full advantage.

Grace Cathedral in San Francisco is harnessing the power of the sun in an effort to “go green.” Thanks to a partnership by PG&E and Solar City, Grace Cathedral now has 30 solar panels powering the church. PG&E fronted the $65,000 cost and Solar City provided the materials. Heidi Zuhl, spokesperson for Grace Cathedral says they’re excited about going solar in a city known for its fog.  read more »

Staying Ahead of The Game

Unemployment is up and if you’re lucky enough to still have a job it might be time to do some damage control to keep one.

The entire country is feeling the job pinch. Every state is reporting a spike in unemployment and no one is sure when jobs will come back. Companies are living lean and finding ways to cut costs, including payroll.

So how can you protect yourself in this warzone filled with pink slips? Robert half international is a leader in staffing and consulting services. The company’s regional Vice President Camelia Lim says right now it’s all about showing what you know.  read more »