Columns

Some years ago, we had a coupon book that offered, among other things, two meals for the price of one at the Ramblers Inn. I’d never heard of the place, and, according to the map, it appeared to be in a neighborhood where you wouldn’t expect to find businesses. In fact, I hadn’t known there was a neighborhood there at all, off Lexington Avenue, north of the Carlos Avery turnoff, nestled against the south shore of Coon Lake. Every time I’d been on Coon Lake, I’d gone in on the north side, at the public access off of Highway 22.

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“Money & Power!” Sounds like a book, and it is. I just recently reread this book, which was written in 2002 by Howard Means and was based on a CNBC documentary about the history of business.

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Youngsters like Kerrie Maleski, Kayley Schoonmaker, Matt Rubel, and Will Tully are part of a major trend in Minnesota. They are among the growing number of students in Minnesota’s two-year community colleges. They’ve also been elected as leaders of the Minnesota State College Student Association.

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In May of 1914, a new set of advertisements appeared in the Union. Readers were advised to “begin laying plans” for a “festival of joy.” A week of “first grade educational entertainment” was on its way. These “seven glorious days of clean enjoyment” would include orchestra, opera singers, alpine yodelers, a Shakespeare play, a scientific demonstration, and daily lectures on such topic as the Panama Canal, the story of New Zealand, love and brotherhood, and the future of America.

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Reputation is an important asset to corporations and those who know it do what they can to build it. To achieve prestige requires a long-term outlook toward building competitive advantage. Companies develop winning reputations by both creating and projecting a set of skills that their constituents recognize and are unique. For some companies, that means differentiating themselves through innovation—nurturing good ideas, translating them into products, and marketing them well.

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