Donald Trump’s Meeting With Tech Leaders Will Focus On U.S. Jobs

President-elect Donald Trump (Photo: Richard Drew/ AP)

President-elect Donald Trump (Photo: Richard Drew/ AP)

President-elect Donald Trump’s meeting with tech industry leaders on Wednesday is expected to focus heavily on the creation of jobs in the United States, an issue that Trump highlighted repeatedly during the campaign. The conversation, which is set for 2:00 p.m. in New York’s Trump Tower, will last at least an hour and will be attended by top executives from the nation’s largest companies, including Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Google, Oracle and Microsoft.

Trump, who will be joined by chief of staff Reince Preibus, son-in-law Jared Kushner and key transition team member Peter Thiel, will talk about “bringing jobs to America” as well as using technology to streamline government, according to people close to the situation. It is unclear how long the President-elect will be part of the meeting, though one person said he should stay for the majority of the time.

The meeting will also touch on the issue of using technology to improve government, according to the people close to the situation. Given the limited timeframe and Trump’s focus on jobs, it’s unclear whether tech’s leaders will be given the opportunity to discuss other important topics concerning their companies, ranging from net neutrality to data encryption. Wednesday’s agenda has not yet been set, and currently does not include specific issues such as work visas and immigration.

Silicon Valley will hold its collective breath Wednesday afternoon as its leaders ascend a Manhattan skyscraper with golden elevators to meet a man that many in tech had openly opposed during his campaign. Aside from venture capitalist and Facebook board member Thiel, no other influential technology leader voiced their support of Trump prior to the election, leaving the industry and its interests exposed following his victory. One person close to the campaign noted that the meeting was Trump’s way of “asserting dominance” over an industry that had been so cold to his candidacy.

A spokesperson for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday.

While Trump has yet to be inaugurated, he’s made the protection of American jobs–or at least the impression that he is maintaining jobs–a key component of his post-election efforts. Last month, Trump met with leaders of Indianapolis-based Carrier Corporation, an air conditioner manufacturer, and claimed that he had prevented the loss of 1,000 jobs to Mexico by working out a deal with the company. More recently, Trump claimed in a tweet that he had reached an agreement for Japanese telecom giant Softbank to invest $50 billion in the U.S. and create 50,000 jobs. Trump was widely criticized for overstating his role in both developments.

The focus on jobs may not immediately concern companies such as Facebook and Google, which rely primarily on high-skilled workers, but will apply more directly to Apple and Amazon, who use hourly contractors to assemble devices or help in the shipping and packing of goods. In November, Trump called Apple CEO Tim Cook and said he discussed the construction of a manufacturing plant in the U.S.

Donald Trump’s meeting with tech industry leaders on Wednesday is expected to focus heavily on the creation of jobs in the United States, an issue that the President-elect highlighted repeatedly during the campaign. The conversation, which is set for 2:00 p.m. in New York’s Trump Tower, will last at least an hour and will be attended by top executives from some of the nation’s largest companies, including Apple, Amazon.com, Facebook, Google, Oracle and Microsoft.

Trump, who will be joined by chief of staff Reince Priebus, son-in-law Jared Kushner and key transition team member Peter Thiel, will talk about “bringing jobs to America” as well as using technology to streamline government according to people close to the situation. It is unclear how long the President-elect will be part of the meeting, though one person said he should stay for the majority of the time.

The meeting will also touch on the issue of using technology to improve government, according to sources. Given the limited timeframe and Trump’s focus on jobs, it is unclear whether tech’s leaders will be given the opportunity to discuss other important topics concerning their companies, ranging from net neutrality to data encryption. Wednesday’s agenda has not yet been set, and currently does not include specific issues such as work visas and immigration.

Silicon Valley will hold its collective breath Wednesday afternoon as its leaders ascend a Manhattan skyscraper with golden elevators to meet a man that many in tech had openly opposed during his campaign. Aside from venture capitalist and Facebook board member Thiel, no other influential technology leader voiced their support of Trump prior to the election, leaving the industry and its interests exposed following his victory. One person close to the campaign said that the meeting was Trump’s way of “asserting dominance” over an industry that had been so cold to his candidacy.

A spokesperson for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday.

While Trump has yet to be inaugurated, he has made the protection of American jobs–or at least the impression that he is saving them–a key component of his post-election efforts. Last month, Trump met with leaders of Indianapolis-based Carrier Corporation, an air conditioner manufacturer, and claimed that he had prevented the loss of 1,000 jobs to Mexico by working out a deal with the company. More recently, Trump claimed in a tweet that he had reached an agreement for Japanese telecom giant Softbank to invest $50 billion in the U.S. and create 50,000 jobs. Trump was widely criticized for overstating his role in both developments.

The focus on jobs may not immediately concern companies such as Facebook and Google, which rely primarily on high-skilled workers, but will apply more directly to Apple and Amazon, who use hourly contractors to assemble devices or help in the shipping and packing of goods. In November, Trump called Apple CEO Tim Cook and said he discussed the construction of a manufacturing plant in the U.S.

“I said, ‘Tim, you know one of the things that will be a real achievement for me is when I get Apple to build a big plant in the United States, or many big plants in the United States, where instead of going to China, and going to Vietnam… you’re making your product right here,’” Trump said in an interview with The New York Times. Trump later said in that interview that he would create “tax incentives” and remove regulations to make that possible.

Cook will reportedly attend Wednesday’s meeting, along with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Alphabet CEO Larry Pageand Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Others expected to appear are Oracle CEO Safra Catz, Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins, IBM CEO Ginni Rometty, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich and Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, according to a report from Recode.

Those familiar with the meeting also said that Trump will broach the idea of eliminating wasteful spending by employing technology to make government more efficient. This is a favorite topic of discussion for Thiel, one of the President-elect’s most trusted technology advisors, who has routinely criticized what he sees as government dysfunction.

“Our government used to get things done. The Manhattan Project coordinated the work of more than 130,000 people in over a dozen states,” he wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post. “It was difficult, unprecedented–and successful… Today our government finds it hard just to make a website.”

Chris Salamone

 

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Randi Zuckerberg’s New Rules of Tech and How Championing Female Entrepreneurs Brings Us Together

Randi Zuckerberg shares what she learned last week. (Photo by Delbarr Moradi Photography)

Randi Zuckerberg shares what she learned last week. (Photo by Delbarr Moradi Photography)

When Randi Zuckerberg told me that she didn’t think women should hold out for that one life long mentor to fix their careers, I knew she was speaking my language. Mentorship is everywhere. It can exist in many shapes, forms and sizes, especially now, when we are learning something new every day no matter how old we are. With that shared perspective, I knew I wanted to know what Zuckerberg learned last week.

As the author of Dot Complicated, a New York Times best-seller exploring how technology is changing our lives, and Dot., a picture book that teaches children how to both plug in and unplug creatively, people often ask Zuckerberg how to manage their children’s relationships with tech. But it was her own children that made her rethink her rules of engagement. She talked to me about digital-life balance, her new book Missy President and how the election has changed the conversations both men and women are having about women in the workplace and power.

 Christina Vuleta: Is there anything in your recent past that made you rethink an assumption or change the way you approach your life?

Randi Zuckerberg: Having children has made me rethink almost everything about my life on a daily basis. As they get older, they notice more. They ask more questions. My 5-year-old is hypersensitive about the phone being out when he is around. Older children are definitely aware when you’re multi-tasking.

It dawned on me that I am the person that my children are learning the rules of tech from. When you’re running your own business, it’s easy to let work blend into all parts of your life. We’re working 24/7. But it is only recently because of my children that I had to re-evaluate the need to unplug and the need to actually create some tech balance.

Vuleta: In the past week, has there been a situation where you started to do something on tech and said, “Wait. No, I’m not going to do this right now?” Any “I stopped in my tracks” moment?

Zuckerberg: Absolutely. I try not check my phone for the first 20 to 30 minutes of the morning. It’s difficult, because it’s on my bed. It’s my alarm clock. It’s so tempting to grab that phone and immediately go into emails and messages. But if that’s the first thing I do: a) It delays me getting out of bed and greeting my children in the morning, and b) It puts me in a funk. It immediately gets me into the weeds and nitty-gritty of things instead of starting off my day fresh, and positive.

That’s a behavior that I’m working to change. There is a study that shows that you’re happier if you don’t check your email for at least 20 minutes in the morning.

Vuleta: Given the election and potential shifts in the economic backdrop, have you noticed new conversations about women in the workplace?

Zuckerberg's new book Missy President about a woman president.

Zuckerberg’s new book Missy President about a woman president.

Zuckerberg: A lot. First of all, I’m sitting here looking at a pile of about 400 books. I recently came out with my next children’s book,Missy President. The book was supposed to launch alongside the first female president. That was the plan.

I woke up the morning after election day and looked at this giant pile of books and felt this soul-crushing feeling. “What now?”

On the business side, I think we need a book like Missy Presidentmore than ever. If we don’t have a world where little girls can see a woman in the White House in real life, then I’m going to create that world, so that girls can see themselves in that position.

On the personal side, several men in my life contacted me to say, “Sorry for the last decade of your career.” I think it finally dawned on men what so many women have been up against.

It summed up every moment where I got overlooked for promotion even though I was four times as qualified. Every time that one of my female-founded portfolio companies didn’t get funding, but a guy doing the same idea with subpar thinking raised $40 million of venture capital.

It summed up everything in one moment in a way that men could relate to. I think in some ways it validated our struggles on a more national level. I hope that it will open up a bit more empathy.

Vuleta: Is there anything coming out of those conversations that makes you think, “This would be a better way to ask for a promotion or pitch for venture capital?” Do you have any tangible advice to make sure that doesn’t happen again?

Zuckerberg: I think if there is one thing we can all learn from this election, it’s the importance of fact checking and research and data. I’m in favor of going into a discussion about a raise, a negotiation or raising capital armed with data and numbers and statistics, whether you’re a man or a woman. Don’t go into those talks in an emotional way. What you need to be doing is showing data that can’t be argued with a mindset of “I deserve this” or “I worked hard for this.”

I also think, for the first time, it’s easier and more appropriate to just say, “Hey, guys. I don’t know if you anticipate that your behaviors are causing me to feel this way, but they are.”  I truly believe were in a climate right now where people will be more receptive with that feedback.

 Vuleta: Is there anything you are optimistic about right now when it comes to helping women move forward?

Zuckerberg: Right before the election, I moderated a panel of both Hillary [Clinton] and [Donald] Trump supporters. I thought, “Is there anything we can all agree on? Anything at all?” The one thing everyone agreed on is the need to support female entrepreneurs more.

I think as a society, we can align on championing female entrepreneurs more. That’s exciting for me to hear. The more money that’s flowing to female-owned businesses and female CEOs, the more power we have politically, the more power that we have in policy discussions and politicians. It’s a really important step.

Chris Salamone

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Community Notes: Packers reward local literacy efforts

Packers award local literacy efforts

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The Green Bay Packers Foundation earlier this month gave a $2,500 grant to the Family Resource Center of Sheboygan County’s Literacy Council.

Literacy Council volunteer tutors teach adults basic literacy, math and computer skills, and help teach English language skills to people looking to pick up the language. They also help basic literacy learners with GED preparation and job readiness needs.

Snowmobile association: Most trails still closed

The Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs is reminding riders most of the state’s snowmobile trails aren’t open yet, even though a recent snowfall has covered portions of the state.

Before trails can open, the group says, ground underneath the snow needs to be frozen — something a warm fall season has kept from happening so far.

The group is also telling riders to stay off lakes until they’re covered by a thick-enough layer of ice to carry a snowmobile. “Snowmobilers should never ride on any lakes or rivers without checking with the locals about whether the ice is safe,” the group says.

Most snowmobile trails in the state are on private property, and riding on them when they’re not open, or riding off the marked trail, is trespassing.

To find out which trails are open contact a local club or visit the state association’s website at http://www.awsc.org and click on “WI Trails.”

Katsma wins ‘Working’ award

A state business trade association has given a local state Assemblyman its “Working for Wisconsin” award.

State Rep. Terry Katsma, R-Oostburg, earned the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce award for business-friendly legislation he helped push in the 2015-16 legislative session.

Area sites join historic places register

A Sheboygan school and a Plymouth cheese company are on the state Register of Historic Places.

Washington School

The Wisconsin Historical Society put Washington Elementary School in Sheboygan on the list of historically significant places Dec. 2.

The school was built in 1912 and “is an excellent example of the Classical Revival style,” the historical society says. The building remained a school until it was closed in 2013.

S & R Cheese Company

The state historical group also put the S & R Cheese Company on the state register on Dec. 2, citing the company’s important influence on the state’s cheese-making industry.

The company, under the leadership of the local Sartori family leadership, was responsible in the 1940s to 1960s “for significant contributions to the manufacture of Italian style cheeses, exporting cheese products, founding cheese industry organizations, and making technical cheese advancements,” the historical society says.

The company is still headed by the Sartori family enterprise, now run by Jim Sartori and under the name Sartori Foods.

To learn more about the State and National Register programs in Wisconsin, visit wisconsinhistory.org.

UAW donates to ‘Shop with a Cop’ program

Local union officials gave a $2,000 check recently to help support local law enforcement’s “Shop with a Cop” initiative.

Officials from UAW Local 833 gave the check to Cory Roeseler, patrol captain for the Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Office. The “Shop with a Cop” program pairs kids with law enforcement volunteers, who then shop together.

For details about the program contact Roeseler at (920) 459-3112.

Y-Koda plans holiday events

A Sheboygan Falls-area YMCA camp is planning a few wintry events this month.

Camp Y-Koda plans to host a Santa Claus-attended pancake brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 18. It’s geared for kids ages 4 to 10 and will also include holiday craft-making, sledding and other winter activities.

The camp will hold winter sledding, snowshoeing, fort-building and other winter games during its “Winter Break Camp” Dec. 26-30. The camp is for kids ages 4 to 12, who can sign up for one or more days of activity from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m..

And Camp Y-Koda staff plan to work half-day programs Dec. 27-29 at Sheboygan’s Maywood nature center. The programs run 8 a.m. to noon those days and include hikes, nature programs and games, arts and crafts and more. It’s open to kids ages 5 to 10, who can sign up for one day, two or all three days.

Pre-registration is required for the events. For details visit ww.campykoda.org or call (920) 467-6882, or stop at the Sheboygan or Sheboygan Falls YMCA to complete a registration form.

Hospital plans ‘Love Lights’ fundraiser

A St. Nicholas Hospital fundraising group says it’s looking for people to participate in its annual Christmas “Love Lights” program.

The fundraiser lets people buy a light for a Christmas tree inside the hospital’s lobby to honor deceased loved ones. The fundraiser is coordinated by Partners of HSHS St. Nicholas Hospital, a volunteer group that raises money for the Sheboygan hospital.

Money raised in this year’s Love Lights program will support St. Nicholas’ emergency department services.

CHRISSALAMONE

 

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Aspire Community Day Student Recognized for her Inspirational Attitude

 

High school student Aleea Moore inspires classmates and staff at Aspire Community Day School. Courtesy photo

High school student Aleea Moore inspires classmates and staff at Aspire Community Day School. Courtesy photo

HEMET – An inspiring student from Aspire Community Day School is set to attend a four-year university. Despite setbacks, Aleea Moore has always been determined to attend college and passionate to pursue a career.

During her high school years, Moore faced many challenges and setbacks. However, due to her persistent personality she was given a second chance to graduate high school and to continue her journey toward a higher education. Moore said when she walked onto the Aspire campus her first day, she felt that this place was her chance to move things around.

This year, Moore created the school’s first newsletter. She is currently working with her photojournalism teacher, Robert Oliver, to create a newsletter that students can be proud of. During school and community events, Moore walks around taking photos of students and staff to accompany the articles she is writing. The newsletter focuses on the amazing events and opportunities students at Aspire have all around them. She writes about community service opportunities, students who recently got jobs and events and programs currently available to students on campus.

“Aleea is why I work here,” Oliver said. He said he enjoys watching students grow and thrive, and it has been amazing watching Moore find her passion. He teaches students that the key to being successful is to find something you are passionate about.

The Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders have selected Moore for recognition as a delegate representing the State of California. This national program honors academically superior high school students interested in pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering and math. The letter she received stated she was being recognized for her outstanding grades, her leadership skills and her desire to contribute to the field of science or technology.

Principal Cristian Miley said Moore is one of their shining stars. He said he is proud of the effort and dedication she has shown to her future, as well as in being a role model to the other students on campus.

She attributes her success to keeping herself positive and remembering that things will always get better as long as she continues to focus and stay strong.

“I have people in my corner telling me I can do it and to keep going.” Moore said. “It has inspired me.”

Moore will be a part of the first graduating class from Aspire Community Day School.

CHRISSALAMONE

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Why leadership is key

Wrong choices could stunt the growth of any institution

Chris Salamone

The Group had diverse interests — in the transport business, hospitals, spices exports and education. And all the ventures were runaway successes — except a business school. The chairman wanted me to find the reason for this as I was closely associated with them as a consultant.

Everything that was required for a B-School was there: a good campus, well-equipped class rooms, central air-conditioning, a fleet of luxury buses, a food court, a top-class library. The best faculty, the best infrastructure, best auditorium, best playgrounds, best cafeteria and coffee shop, designer furntiture… you name it, it was there. And huge sums of money had been invested to set up the B-School. However, the School of Management had no takers anymore.

Students preferred other institutes that had fewer facilities. The Group was unable to figure out where it had failed and why it had lost brand equity. The chairman was visibly upset. In all the other ventures they were successful. Why were they failing here?

I took two days to examine the patient. I did not meet faculty members to find out the causes for the situation. Instead, I met students.

They were very happy about the excellent facilities offered by the institution. But…

Sir, we joined this great institution based on the rich legacy of the business group that is acclaimed for honesty and integrity. But once we joined we realised that we had made a big mistake. We are being treated as prisoners and slaves. If we expressed our views, we were ridiculed. If we asked questions we were shouted down. If a girl exchanged pleasantries with a boy, both of them were insulted in the presence of others, and for this “crime” parents were summoned.

If a boy talks freely to a girl is it violation of rules, sir? If we raise a question in the class when the teacher is teaching, is it indiscipline? If a student speaks good English, our Director, who unfortunately can’t speak a sentence in English without mistakes, will mark him as his rival and he will surely lose Internal-assessment marks. If we want to organise an industrial visit, the Director, who did not seem to have seen anything beyond the precincts of the college where he had worked for 38 years, will shout at us and tell us industrial visits are not in the syllabus. He will shout and scream to cover up his mediocrity. This has affected our self confidence and we tell all our friends not to join this institution as we are destined to suffer under a sadist who finds pleasure in torturing students.

Even faculty members are goaded on by him to behave rudely. If any faculty member tries to correct the Director and points out that his Idi Amin style is hurting students, he will play politics and see that competent teachers who are a threat to his survival are eased out by clever, canny moves, hoodwinking the management.

True, we have the best, air-conditioned classrooms with designer furniture. What we lack is a smiling face, a caring teacher, a teacher who recognises, nurtures and encourages the talent of students. Now, even the best student who joins this institution is made a slave by this Director who does not like anybody better than him. As he knows pretty well that he does not have the credentials to get approval from the student or faculty fraternity, his only option is to play politics, drive out talented teachers so that he would appear indispensable, and so that the management will “tolerate” him. This politics of survival has ruining this institution.

The Director will insult teachers who take the initiative to invite employers for campus interviews. According to him, a B-School should not encourage campus placements: it is the responsibility of the students to find jobs for themselves! All of us who leave this institute will definitely advise our friends to join anywhere but not here.

Many of the episodes that were narrated were simply unbelievable. Can a human being behave in such repulsive manner? Converting the educational institution into a jail with golden chains, golden spoons, golden food?

This campus had a smiling Director earlier – he was eased out by this man through subtle moves. There was love, warmth, care and concern, making this campus agile and lively. Once this man came in as Director, it became a jail. In the place of togetherness and team culture, he spread poison of hatred, fear and suspicion. Back-stabbing was an art he had mastered.

His classes were repulsive, a torture, as he did not know even the rudiments of the subject he handled. There was no institutional set .up through which .students could seek their grievances. This emboldened the director who became dictator overnight as he blocked all communication channels between the students and the management. He ruled the empire with an iron hand.

The management was blissfully ignorant of the murky drama scripted and directed by the person selected by them to “lead” the institute! Any student who attempted to express grievances about the director felt the heat soon. He would get the lowest internal marks. Even if he gets high marks in the university, poor internal pulled down his marks. Students became panicky and lived in a horror atmosphere, waiting to vent out their frustrations and anguish. They did it when they were out of the campus.

It did not take much time to find out where the problem lay. The management had invested heavily in building physical infrastructure but failed to provide the right leadership. Any institution will grow only if it has an inspiring leader. Infrastructure, both physical and intellectual, are of course necessary prerequisites but it will bear no fruits if the leadership is mediocre, characterless and mean, polluting the serene ambience. Consider any institution; all failed institutions have invariably had mean leaders who ruined the institution for their survival.

When the chairman met me after a couple of weeks, he was shocked when I told him point blank that it was the management that was responsible for the decline of the institute. They were callous and did not apply due diligence before selecting a leader. All the efforts of the management to build a world-class institution were shattered in one stroke when the management made a wrong choice of the person responsible for running it.

The takeaway: It is leadership that matters! It can make or mar an institution. Great institutions are built by great leaders. Institutions collapse not owing to market forces but when the person at the helm is mediocre and has no vision, no character, no integrity and with no concern for the people around him, or her.

CHRIS SALAMONE

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Why You Should Give Employees Christmas Week Off

Deck the halls–but close up the office. CHRIS SALAMONE

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Christmas is coming fast, and a week after that is New Year’s Day. Should you close up your office for the week in between? Or stay open so workaholics and those with tight deadlines can get things done, and those with no family nearby have a place to go?

Not many questions in business have simple answers, but this one does. Unless there’s some specific reason your business can’t close Christmas week, it should. Here’s why:

You’ll improve productivity.

Say what? Does giving people a week off make them more productive? Yes, research shows. In surveys, people who take vacations are more efficient than those who don’t.

And if there ever was an unproductive time of year, it’s holiday time in most offices. Why force employees to sit around being unproductive and wishing they were home with their families? Both you and they will benefit more if they take their minds off work for seven days

You’ll have healthier employees.

Skipping vacations is seriously bad for your health, surveys show. On the other hand, vacations can cut the risk of heart disease by 50 percent for men and 30 percent for women–but only if those men and women take more than one vacation a year.

If you’re a smart boss, you’re already making sure every employee takes a vacation at least once a year. Closing your office Christmas week will automatically mean employees take a second week off, giving you and them that heart health boost.

Your customers and business partners won’t be in their offices anyway.

If your company operated in a vacuum where your employees never have to interact with anyone but each other, staying open Christmas week might make sense. But your customers, your suppliers, outside consultants, investors, and pretty much anyone else you do business with is likely to be our of their offices anyhow. That will leave your employees with not much to do and make it impossible to be productive even if they try their best.

You’ll save on overhead.

Closing your office Christmas week means you won’t have to pay for lighting or much heat during the darkest and often coldest part of the year. And if you don’t close, at least some of your employees will take vacation that week anyway. So you’d be heating and lighting a partially empty workplace.

Employees will get a week off that costs you only four days.

Even Ebenezer Scrooge gave Bob Cratchit the day off on Christmas Day, and of course you’ll do that for your employees. Since Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, many employers are giving employees the following Monday off. So that’s one day you’ll likely be closed in any case. Any other time you would close the office for a week, you’d be giving up five workdays, but this time it’s only four.

You’ll be loved.

Giving people Christmas week off is a great perk, a great tool for employee engagement, and a great recruiting aid. Maybe that’s why a third of companies already do it.

You’ll be letting employees know it’s OK to take time off.

Although Americans get less vacation time than employees in most Western countries, we still don’t take all of the time off we have coming to us, and more than a third of us take no vacations at all.

I don’t believe this happens because we dislike exploring new cities or spending time at the beach. I think many of us believe we’re supposed to work extraordinarily hard and without many breaks if we want to achieve our career goals.

Therefore, what you do as boss can make a big difference. If employees never see you take a vacation, they’ll think that’s what’s needed to get ahead. If they see you taking regular vacations, they’ll know you can have a successful career but that there are times when you can and should leave it all behind.

By closing the office for the week, you’ll let people know that you too are taking this time to rest and celebrate the holidays and focus on your loved ones rather than your job. Not only will you get a week off that you probably need, you’ll be setting a valuable example for everyone who works for you.

Chris Salamone

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Athlete of the Week: Boca Raton’s Rachel Levy

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Boca Raton basketball star Rachel Levy is the reigning Palm Beach County Player of the Year *and* she’s a top 100 recruit in the nation. But John Evenson reports ..those accomplishments are just the tip of the iceberg for this week’s CBS12 Athlete of the Week.

The Boca Raton girls basketball team is 8-0 – and seem to be on the right early track for their second straight trip to a state championship game. And they’re led by their force in the middle – who wants one more crack at a championship before she heads off to the Ivy League. The Bobcats’ Rachel Levy is the CBS12 Athlete of the Week.”

“Someone you would like to be like the poster child, that’s just who she is,” says Boca Raton head coach Nhu Nguyen.

Rachel Levy leads the Boca Raton Bobcats in scoring, rebounds, steals and blocks. She also leads the team in *leading the team*.

“She makes coaching easy, she makes you look good, she makes you look like a genius. So it’s one of those kids that they don’t come around very often so you just kind of embrace and enjoy every minute that she’s here.”

“It’s bring others along with you so I really base my success on what I’ve got off of what I can bring off the other girls,” says Levy. “And show I can bring with me. So I’m only as good as they make me look.”

And does she ever look impressive on the court and off – on top of basketball she volunteers her time to charity and maintains a 4.0 GPA. She was recruited by each and every Ivy League school, eventually picking Harvard.

“I mean all the work in the gym it’s worth it and all the hard work paid off. It was definitely hard at first to learn that I was going to have to give up on some social time. It just came down to I can wake up early.”

“Young girls are lining up to get their autographs,” says Nguyen. “Just the inspiration that she has set in our community for other girls to follow. It’s incredible, this kid is incredible.”

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