Insight News

Aug 31st


Advocates restore Flamingo Restaurant

Advocates restore Flamingo RestaurantFlamingo Restaurant, an eatery that serves traditional East African fare, specifically Ethiopian, Eritrean, and Somali, in St. Paul’s Midway, recently underwent new ownership.

The restaurant, which originally opened in 2006, is now under the guidance of East African women’s activist and community leaders, Shegitu Kebede and Frewoini Haile.

“Fre and I are very excited about entering the restaurant business,” said Kebede. “It’s truly our passion...we love serving people. We also need to become self-sufficient so that we can make a difference in our lives as well as the lives of others, especially East African women. Running a successful business can get us to this goal.”

Making change: Fall is a good time to find a new you

Making change:  Fall is a good time to find a new youBack to school. This is when shorts turn into jeans, sweatshirts turn into ski jackets and thoughts turn to making the life changes we’ve been putting off all summer. Making significant, real change is never easy, but the payoff can be incredible and well worth the effort.

Start making change now by committing to the change you’ve been kicking around. Create a reminder and put it where you will see it often throughout the day. A word, picture or symbol is enough to keep you mindful. Put it in the bathroom (you can write on the mirror with soap or eyeliner), in your car, or tattoo it to your belly. Anywhere you go pretty regularly is a good place to post your commitment. My latest commitment is to ride my bike every day. I put the bike in the front hall, instead of out in the shed, and although it’s in the way, it’s hard to forget that promise to myself.

BBB warns public about fraudulent, aggressive collection calls

Consumers report being threatened with arrest

The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) has received reports of fraudulent and aggressive collection calls targeting area consumers. In some cases, consumers have been threatened with arrest if they don’t pay off alleged debts immediately.

“People need to be aware that these calls are occurring and they need to know what to do if they receive a call like this,” said Dana Badgerow, President and CEO of the BBB of Minnesota and North Dakota. “The threat of arrest is a dastardly tactic, and it’s important to know what your rights are.”

Hands-on, hands-off: Two kinds of managers

Hands-on, hands-off: Two kinds of managersMy friend Jim Johnson heads up a successful staffing agency in Minneapolis.  Over the past two years, he had to let three managers go.  “The economy?”  I ask, nodding like I know what I am talking about.  “Not at all,” he replies.  “Business is good, and they were good managers.  They just weren’t the kind of managers we needed.”

Jim is perceptive.  There are only two kinds of managers, and their categories are not Dumb and Dumber.  Whether you are a manager now, aspiring to manage or being managed, you may know the types:  Hands Off and Hands On.  Knowing which manager you are or are reporting to will help you navigate through business’ ups and downs effectively.

Nielsen Executive receives Launa T. Thompson Award at Black Women’s Expo Gala

Nielsen Executive receives Launa T. Thompson Award at Black Women’s Expo GalaCheryl Pearson-McNeil joins elite list of past recipients Oprah Winfrey and Linda Johnson Rice

August 13, 2010, Chicago, IL: The Nielsen Company’s Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Government Relations, Cheryl Pearson-McNeil accepted the Launa T. Thompson award during The Black Women’s Expo Phenomenal Woman Gala last week. The 38 member advisory panel comprised of African American women in Chicago nominated Pearson-McNeil based on her outstanding excellence in business and community service.

The human face of the mortgage foreclosure crisis

Suicides, divorce, anxiety attacks, depression, and displacement of children from homes and schools are not what we associate with the mortgage foreclosure crisis. But we should.  Instead of following the money, we should pay attention to the human side of the crisis.  

In this third year of the mortgage tsunami, while we debate about who profited and which federal agencies should have better monitoring, we ignore how people now choose between buying medicine for chronic illnesses and mortgage payments, or paying rent after foreclosure, and how communities are dying. 

On the ground, agencies that offer financial literacy workshops for current owners and potential buyers, mortgage loan consultations, legal aid advice for those in foreclosure, and bankruptcy counseling may prevent future catastrophes, but short term, they are ill prepared to respond to the human suffering, and  provide professional mental health counseling or make referrals.

Too Busy to Connect? Use professional networks online to build credibility and solidify connections

Too Busy to Connect?  Use professional networks online to build credibility and solidify connectionsAfter eight hours on the job, most people balk at spending priceless evening time surfing professional networks online.  If you are not currently looking for work, why bother?
Here’s why:  You might meet someone.  You might learn something.  You might have an opportunity to help someone else get ahead.

I have enough connections, you say.  Sure.  Today you do.  But when you lose your job tomorrow, or choose to relocate or retire or change careers altogether, then how many connections are enough?  And do most of your connections know or care that they are connected with you?  On a scale of tight to barely attached, how connected are you, really?
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