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Benefitting from Workgroups

Sometimes the Team Approach Can be a Better Solution.

By Thomas J. Roach

One of the ways progressive companies make their business culture more participative and collegial is through the involvement of workgroups. These can be valuable to problem-solve in areas as diverse as how to approach a permitting issue to the best way to plan a community event.

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Use More Than Your Gut Feeling When Interviewing

Good Interviewing Skills Can Reduce Turnover Costs and Improve Productivity.

By Steve Schumacher

Several years ago, I worked with a company that, over the course of a year, hired three people in key positions who all failed and were fired within 90 days of being hired. They had interviewed very well, in fact they were superstars in the interview. When I talked to the managers who had done the interviewing, they all agreed that the candidates were “good people,” “real go-getters,” and “had what it takes” to do the jobs.

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Flying High

I just flew in from the ConExpo-Con/Agg show in Las Vegas, and boy are my arms tired. Okay, the “arms tired” part isn’t completely true. To be honest, every part of my body is tired!

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Highway Construction Posts Gains in 2010

New construction starts in December climbed 19 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $450.2 billion, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies. Nonresidential building rebounded after a weak November, and Nonbuilding Construction was lifted by the start of several large electric utility projects. Gains were registered by highway construction, which rose 7 percent. Meanwhile, residential building in December showed slight growth, continuing the gradual upward trend of recent months.

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Construction Spending Lowest in a Decade

The U.S. Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce reported that construction spending during December 2010 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $787.9 billion, 2.5 percent below the revised November estimate of $807.8 billion. The December figure is 6.4 percent below the December 2009 estimate of $841.8 billion. The value of construction in 2010 was $814.2 billion, 10.3 percent below the $907.8 billion spent in 2009. That is the lowest level of construction spending in a decade.

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