Tag Archives: business leaders

WPCarey-School-Sign

W. P. Carey School Honors Top Business Leaders

Three top business leaders will be honored for their innovation and achievements, when they are inducted into the W. P. Carey School of Business Homecoming Hall of Fame this month. They include the head of a famed jewelry company, a high-profile business founder from China, and a corporate leader at one of Arizona’s biggest companies.

On Oct. 17, they will join previous Arizona State University alumni inductees from such diverse organizations as the American Red Cross, Motorola, the U.S. Air Force, Wells Fargo Bank, XM Satellite Radio and the Arizona Diamondbacks.

“These stellar inductees represent strength, leadership and accomplishment in the business world,” says W. P. Carey School of Business Dean Amy Hillman. “They demonstrate how far our students can go and have gone in making their mark on the global economy.”

The 36th annual W. P. Carey School honorees are:

> Eddie LeVian, chief executive officer of the Le Vian Corporation, who has made Chocolate Diamonds® a red-carpet staple in Hollywood. LeVian earned a business degree from the W. P. Carey School in 1979 and took his innovative marketing ideas back to his family’s fine jewelry business in New York. The company’s sales have more than quadrupled over the past decade, and the LeVian family is active with many charities, raising $75 million in the past decade alone.

> Canglong Liu, a high-profile business leader in China, who founded one fertilizer factory in 1979, which grew into a conglomerate of major companies, including the Sichuan Hongda Group, now with 30,000 employees and 60 subsidiaries around the world. Liu is chairman of businesses that focus on finance, minerals and real estate. He is also a member of the national committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and the standing committee of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce. The Hongda Group has given $8 million to AIDS prevention and research in China. Liu received his MBA from the W. P. Carey School’s prestigious executive MBA program in Shanghai in 2007.

> MaryAnn Miller, chief human resources officer and executive leader of corporate communications for Avnet, a Phoenix-based Fortune 500 company with more than 18,000 employees and customers in 80 countries. Avnet is one of the largest distributors of electronic components, computer products and embedded technology in the world. Miller has more than 30 years of experience in human resources and operations management, and is responsible for leading the company’s human resources, organizational development and corporate communications worldwide. She is also a member of the Avnet Executive Board. She received her MBA from the W. P. Carey School’s executive MBA program in 2001.

About 200 alumni, business leaders and students are expected to attend the Homecoming Hall of Fame event on Thursday, Oct. 17 at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa in Phoenix. A reception starts at 5:30 p.m., followed by the awards ceremony.

Space is limited. For more information on tickets or sponsorship, go to www.wpcarey.asu.edu/homecoming or call (480) 965-2597.

energy.bill

Coalition Formed to Combat Proposed EPA Regulations

A group of Arizona business leaders and politicians announced that they have created a coalition to address proposed regulations on the Navajo Generating Station.

The Arizona Coalition for Water, Energy and Jobs said in a press conference on Tuesday that regulations proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, if implemented, will have an adverse effect on the Arizona economy by “significantly increasing water prices.”

The proposed regulations, which are a part of the EPA’s “regional haze program,” would require the generating station to install pollution control technology, intended to reduce haze and increase visibility over the Grand Canyon.

“This (the regulations) will not improve enjoyment of the Grand Canyon, but will increase the cost of business,” Sid Wilson, chairman of the coalition said.

Wilson, who came out of a four-year retirement from the Central Arizona Water Conservation District to chair the coalition, said during the conference that implementing the necessary emissions control technology, which are proposed to be complied with by Aug. 6, “could cost up to $1 billion.”

“At risk are 3,400 jobs each year,” said Karrin Taylor, board chair of Valley Partnership.

“If these jobs disappear, they would be very difficult to replace,” said Kelly Norton, president of the Arizona Mining Association, noting that an increase in water prices would have a “cascading effect on the economy.”

Taylor also said that the regulations would stagnate business development in Arizona.

“One of the most important considerations for developing businesses is power and water rates,” she said.  “If we double or triple the cost of water, we immediately remove an important attribute of business development.”

She said that Arizona has “always had a competitive advantage” due to its ability to offer low rates on water and power, and noted “the Navajo Generating Station is at the heart of that system.”

“We can’t put at risk such an important economic tool for a rule that will deliver no benefit,” she said.

House Speaker Andy Tobin said during the conference that the coalition is rallying both locally and in Washington for support on the issue.

“I am asking the President of the United States to protect Arizona from these regulations,” he said.

David Martin, president of the Arizona Chapter of the Associated General Contractors, said during the conference that the proposed regulations would produce results “similar to what happened at the Mohave Power Station,” which was forced to be shut down in 2005 after facing similar government intervention.

“We are not going to let special interests force us into the same corner,” he said.

Coalition members also said that the benefits of the regulations, which they cite as being based on “flawed technical analysis,” do not exceed the costs.

“The EPA has yet to thoughtfully approach the cost/benefit analysis required under law,” Martin said.  “If the costs of this rule exceed the benefits, and they clearly do, there would be no required retrofit.”

economy

U.S. Business Leaders Showing Signs of Optimism

On the heels of a pessimistic outlook during the fourth quarter of 2012, US business leaders show signs of increased optimism in the performance of the nation’s economy according to the latest data from the Grant Thornton International Business Report, a survey of 3,200 business leaders in 44 countries. In first quarter 2013, optimism among U.S. business leaders rose from -4 percent to 31 percent.

This finding accompanies IBR data that reveals an improvement in sentiment about most areas of business performance and stability. The net percent balance of US business leaders expecting revenues to increase in 2013 rose by eight percentage points from the fourth quarter. In addition, profitability expectations rose sharply in first quarter 2013, up 14 percentage points from the previous quarter. Encouragingly, hiring expectations in the United States remain above the global average. A net balance of 29 percent of business leaders in the United States foresee an increase in hiring during the coming year, a four-percentage point increase from the previous quarter and five percentage points above the global average.

“With the fiscal cliff and presidential election behind us, the anxiety has seemingly lessened among business executives,” said Stephen Chipman, chief executive officer of Grant Thornton LLP. “While uncertainty is still present, it’s encouraging to see such a large increase in optimism among the nation’s business leaders—particularly when it comes to employment, which is key to US economic health.”

The increase in optimism in the US economy is on par with what is occurring in other markets, with global business optimism up to its highest level since early 2011. Globally, a net balance of 27 percent of businesses are optimistic about the economic outlook, up from just 4 percent from the previous quarter. Following the United States, the next two largest economies in the world also saw sentiment improve. China business optimism rose from a net balance of 19 percent to 29 percent while Japan saw a major increase in optimism, from a net balance of -70 percent to -2 percent.

Still, there are some areas for improvement. Despite a modest uptick from the previous quarter, few U.S. businesses plan to invest in research and development in 2013, with a net balance of only 12 percent expecting an increase during the next 12 months. In addition, 36 percent of U.S. business leaders cite regulations and red tape as the number one factor stopping them from growing their operations in the next 12 months.

desert peaks award

Desert Peaks Awards Recipients Named

During a special ceremony in June, the Maricopa Association of Governments will honor nine partnerships and individuals who have been selected to receive the 2012 Desert Peaks Awards. The prestigious awards are presented to those agencies and individuals who have demonstrated a commitment to promoting, recognizing, and attaining the ideals of regionalism.

Recipients will be honored during the Maricopa Association of Governments Desert Peaks Awards on Wednesday, June 27, 2012 at the Downtown Sheraton Hotel, 340 N. 3rd Street, Phoenix. The ceremony begins at 6:15 p.m. More than 200 people, including elected officials and business leaders, are expected to attend the ceremony.

Awards will be distributed in six categories: Public PartnershipPublic-Private PartnershipProfessional Service (two recipients were selected for this honor), Regional Partnership (two recipients were selected for this honor), Regional Excellence (two recipients were selected for this honor), and a  new category added this year, Outstanding Economic Development Champion.

This year, two individuals were selected to receive the program’s highest honor for Regional Excellence, Avondale Mayor Marie Lopez Rogers and Tempe Councilmember Shana Ellis. Mayor Rogers was nominated “for her regional leadership in guiding the transformation of not only Avondale but the entire region through her direct engagement to ensure its economic, social and cultural vitality.” Councilmember Shana Ellis was cited for being instrumental in having the Regional Public Transportation Authority (Valley Metro) and METRO light rail work in tandem to realize significant efficiencies through a combined, streamlined regional agency.

2012 DESERT PEAKS AWARDS RECIPIENTS:

  • Public Partnership: Regional Emergency Transportation Service
  • Public-Private Partnership: City of Avondale and the Gangplank Collective
  • Professional Service: Mr. Ed Beasley, City Manager, City of Glendale; and Mr. David Smith, former County Manager, Maricopa County
  • Regional Partnership: Domestic Violence Protocol Evaluation Project; Regional Wireless Cooperative/Topaz Regional Wireless Cooperative
  • Regional Excellence: Mayor Marie Lopez Rogers, City of Avondale; Councilmember Shana Ellis, City of Tempe
  • Outstanding Economic Development Champion: The Flinn Foundation

Costs of the event are being offset through sponsorships. Gold Sponsors include Atkins North America; Cambridge Systematics; HDR Engineering; and Parsons Brinckerhoff.

Silver Sponsors include APS; Arizona Lottery; Delta Dental; Kimley-Horn and Associates; MJ Insurance; Mariscal, Weeks, McIntyre & Friedlander, P.A.; Wells Fargo, N.A.; and Wilson & Company, Inc. Engineers and Architects.

Bronze Sponsors include Arup; Burgess & Niple; The CK Group, Inc.; ECOtality, Inc.; Jacobs; Technical & Business Systems; TerraSystems Southwest; and Triadvocates.

Recipients were selected by a distinguished panel of judges who represent diverse interests from throughout the Valley. The judging panel for the 2012 Desert Peaks Awards included James K. Ballinger, director of the Phoenix Art Museum; Don Cassano, former city of Tempe councilmember and ombudsman for the Arizona Department of Transportation; Angela Creedon, assistant vice president of public affairs with Arizona State University; Michael S. Ellegood, senior consultant of public works with PSMJ Resources; Lloyd Harrell, former city manager of Chandler; and Jack Lunsford, former executive director of WESTMARC.

For more information on the Desert Peaks Awards, visit Maricopa Association of Government’s website at azmag.gov.

dbacks speaker series

D-Backs To Sponsor Sports Career Speaker Series

The Arizona Diamondbacks announced that they will host a Speaker Series throughout the season featuring D-backs executives and Phoenix-area business leaders as they field questions about their line of work in the sports industry.

The Speaker Series is open to fans of all ages and will be held on the first base side of the Insight Diamond Level prior to select Tuesday home games covering topics such as legal, marketing, communications, community affairs, finance, sponsorship, branding and trends in sports sales, and human resources. Each topic will be covered by a moderator and a team of panelists with expertise in the category featured.

The first Speaker Series was held on April 24 with D-backs Senior Director of Legal Affairs and Associate General Counsel Caleb Jay heading the panel, covering legal topics in the sports industry. They were joined by legal executives from the D-backs, Phoenix Suns, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State University.

Dates, topics and moderators include:

  • May 22: Marketing – Karina Bohn, D-backs Senior Director of Marketing
  • June 19: Communications – Josh Rawitch, D-backs Senior Vice President of Communications
  • July 24: Community Affairs – Debbie Castaldo, D-backs Vice President of Community Affairs & Executive Director, Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation
  • Aug. 21: Finance – Tom Harris, D-backs Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
  • Aug. 28: Sponsorship, Branding and Trends in Sports Sales – Cullen Maxey, D-backs Executive Vice President of Business Operations
  • Sept. 18: Human Resources – Marian Rhodes, D-backs Senior Vice President & Chief Human Resources & Diversity Officer

Fans can enjoy the game from the Miller Lite Diamond Club which will serve as a great area for networking with others in the sports industry. Tickets for the Speaker Series are only $20 and include a $5 credit in D-bucks. Fans interested in attending the Speaker Series can call (602) 462.4243.

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Business Management

Leadership Vs. Management: What’s The Difference?

Leadership and management, management and leadership; some individuals see these terms as interchangeable synonyms. However, there are several important differences.

First, let’s differentiate between a manager and a leader. Managers are to exercise executive, administrative and supervisory direction of a team, group or organization. A leader, on the other hand, is future-focused and works to influence or guide a group of individuals to achieve a common goal through inspiration rather than task completion.

So what are the key differences, and what skills and traits are necessary to succeed as a manager and as a leader? A manager generally receives his/her authority based on his/her role. A leader’s authority is innate in his/her approach. A common expression also tells us that leadership is doing the right thing, while management is doing things right.

Jerry L. Mills, founder of B2B CFO, says that every organization has three types of employees: finders, minders and grinders.

The Finder: The entrepreneur, the visionary, the leader, the idea generator and the catalyst for future change — finders work in the future.

The Minder: The administrative, accounting and operational staff of the company — minders are historians; they work in the past.

The Grinder: The people who do the physical work of the company, grinders may be construction workers out in the field or telemarketers at a desk. Grinders work for today and are not concerned about the future or the past.

When organizations work in tandem allowing each employee to both know and execute his/her role, things run smoothly.

As a business owner, at times I’ve made the mistake of trying to be everything to everyone. I have learned to recognize in others and within myself the traits most important to posses in order to maintain a clear vision. I have also learned what traits I need as a manager to help our business succeed. These traits are cross disciplinary and can be applied whether you work in plumbing, finance or the arts.

Business Leaders Skills

Lead by example 

Pitch in wherever needed. A leader cannot be afraid to get his/her hands dirty. When your employees are in the trenches, you’re in the trenches.

Passion 

Your leader must believe in what he/she is doing as well as the work the company, organization or team is engaged in. This is not an instance where faking it until you make it will work.

Organization 

Without clear organization, your company will be chasing its own tail and wasting valuable time.

Delegate 

The leader cannot do or be everything to everyone. Successful delegation includes giving ownership of the work their assigned.

Communicate Effectively 

Employees, or grinders, need to know their work is important. Be precise, specific and concise.

Business Management Skills

Great customer service skills 

No matter the business, no matter the location, no matter the service, a manager cannot succeed without being service-minded.

Self-motivation and dependability 

Managers must be capable of doing their job without being micromanaged. They must be committed to putting their all into the job every day. Managers need to be capable of making even the most challenging of circumstances a success.

Integrity and trustworthiness 

By hiring someone that you can trust, you’ll reduce your own stress levels. The business owner will be able to place his/her focus on growing the business.

Be a team player 

Managers must be committed to their team. A manager is the liaison who has to be able to work well and communicate with both employees and executives.

Conflict resolution abilities 

Serving as liaison allows the manager to be in the know from both ends. They need to be able to see conflicts as they arise and nip them in the bud before they turn devastating.