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December 27, 2012
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  Top Story 
 
  • Stihl donates chainsaws, weed eaters to firefighters
    The Mid-Atlantic division of Stihl has given chainsaws, weed eaters and safety equipment to the Hillsborough/Orange Rural Fire Department in Hillsborough, N.C. Stihl also included hearing- and face-protection equipment with the tools, and held training sessions on proper use of the tools. "They’ve trained all of our firefighters in sawing and machine safety," Chief Jeff Cabe said. "Stihl's an awesome company. They’ve taken really good care of us. It’s Christmas for the fire department." The News of Orange County (Hillsborough, N.C.) (12/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Vanguard Power Code Helps In-field Operators
Vanguard Power Code, a square barcode located on Vanguard single-cylinder and V-twin engines, directs equipment operators to an array of important information for that specific engine model after being scanned with a smart phone’s barcode reader.
  Industry Buzz 
  • Electric riding mower to promote sustainability at Conn. park
    An electric, zero-turn riding mower from Hustler Turf Equipment has been donated to the Flanders Nature Center in Woodbury, Conn. The Hustler Zeon produces less noise and emissions, and was donated by the Woodbury Saw and Mower store. "It ... gives Flanders an opportunity to expose young Earth-loving minds to green-friendly alternatives to property maintenance," said Kevin Barry, the owner of Woodbury Saw and Mower. VoicesNews.com (Southbury, Conn.) (12/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Storm preparation boosts snowblower demand at Mass. store
      
    Source: WGGB-TV
    Sales of snowblowers and other winter supplies climbed at Rocky's Ace Hardware store in Springfield, Mass., as customers rushed to prepare for a Wednesday night snowstorm. This has helped the store to compensate for the weak demand of snow equipment last year. "Everybody is getting set. Everybody doesn’t really know exactly what to expect so they are kind of getting ready for everything," store clerk Marilyn Nicewicz said. WGGB-TV (Springfield, Mass.) (12/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

10 ways to inspire creativity in your staff.
Fostering creative business practices isn't as hard as it seems and can lead to smart solutions. Use these ten techniques to help inspire and encourage creativity in your staff. Read the article and learn 10 ways to get the creative juices flowing.

  Economic Indicators 
  • U.S. home prices jump 4.3% year-on-year
    As of October, U.S. home prices in 20 major cities were up 4.3% from a year before, according to a private index, for the sharpest gain since mid-2010. The S&P/Case-Shiller reading confirms that the key housing market "is definitely starting to recover," adding "about a trillion dollars to household wealth just since the beginning of this year," said Ryan Wang, an economist with HSBC Securities USA. Bloomberg (12/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Inside & Out 
  • 7 ways to offer superior customer service
    You can offer top-notch customer service by hiring employees who care about their work and treating each customer as an individual, writes Susan Payton, drawing on advice from the book "High Tech, High Touch Customer Service" by Micah Solomon. It's also important to offer a little something extra and to continuously look for ways to improve your service. Small Business Trends (12/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How to be a better leader next year
    You can become a better leader in the new year by holding people accountable, offering praise for a job well done and taking on tough challenges, writes Brian Evje of Slalom Consulting. "[W]hen a leader embraces an inconvenient challenge, the message is clearly one of devotion to the shared purpose," he writes. Inc. online (free registration) (12/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy Update 
  • Washington readies final effort to avert "fiscal cliff"
    With President Barack Obama and members of the Senate headed back to Washington, D.C., political leaders are preparing to make a final attempt at averting the "fiscal cliff" that economists say could send the U.S. economy back into recession. In a sign that there may be a way to break the standoff, Rep. John Boehner of Ohio, head of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, urged the Senate, where Democrats hold the majority, to offer a proposal that could restart movement toward a budget compromise. Reuters (12/26), Politico (Washington, D.C.) (12/26), Bloomberg (12/26), The Hill/On The Money blog (12/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  SmartQuote 
People who lean on logic and philosophy and rational exposition end by starving the best part of the mind."
--William Butler Yeats,
Irish poet and playwright


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