The Bullseye - March 2009
Sunday, March 1, 2009
In This Issue:
The Latest Buzz: Organizational Democracy,
Avoiding Web Search Privacy Abuse,
Monthly Contest Winner,
OPEC Oil Report
The Latest Buzz: Organizational Democracy
Human Resource organizations are constantly looking for new ways to improve management and organizational effectiveness. The last several years have given rise to a trend called organizational democracy. Some individuals are even using it as a qualification for their job search, and companies are using it as a tool for performance management.
So what exactly is organizational democracy? Traci Fenton, founder of WorldBlu Inc., a leadership and business design studio, defines organizational democracy as “freedom within a business framework." She continues, "we are in an age of participation and cooperation and influence that we've never seen before. This requires a new, democratic style of business."
According to WorldBlu, Inc., some of the qualities that organizational democracies encompass include: open conversations, decentralized networks, universal ideals, they’ve given up the delusion that they are in control, all levels make critical decisions, a quadruple bottom-line (financial, community, external, and internal environments), and transparency (all levels are informed).
One of the great benefits of organizational democracy during a recession is nothing is a surprise. Fenton says, “if a company is being democratic, there aren’t any surprises. And if there’s that feeling that you’re all in it together, you’ll figure it out together. You’ll innovate and everyone will help come up with ideas for survival.”
Companies that utilize the organizational democracy framework range from the Great Harvest Bread Company to Axiom News and FBS Data Systems. For more information on how your company can utilize organizational democracy visit http://www.worldblu.com/.
Do you have an update to share with us? Did you get promoted, have a new addition to your family or any other news you’d like to share? Click here to tell us about it.
Avoiding Web Search Privacy Abuse
Did you know that when you conduct an online search, the search engine you utilized saves the data? The information retained includes the words and sites you searched for and the time and date. The data is retained for three or more months depending on the company. Microsoft currently saves the data for eighteen months, Google for nine months and Yahoo for three months.
Internet search engines accomplish this data retrieval by identifying your computer’s IP address. Your IP address is the unique identifying number given to all computers to enable web access. Once the data is saved, the company has a compiled list of your personal likes and interests. Unfortunately, this opens the door for privacy abuses.
In a Parade magazine article Paul Stephens of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse suggests that saving this data is like every phone conversation you’ve had being recorded.
So what can the average surfer do to protect their privacy? Try not to include identifiable information in your search such as your name, social security number, credit card number, etc. Also, don’t use your ISP’s search engine. For example, if you use AOL, don’t search using http://search/aol.com. In addition, try to vary your IP address by shutting down the modem at night.
If you use the search engine that is connected to your e-mail account, be sure to log-out. For example, if you have a Google G-Mail account, then be sure to log-out prior to any Google search.
Finally, block “cookies” from your search engine. “Cookies” are small amounts of information that websites can put on your computer if you visit them. Some “cookies” are necessary, but there is a way to allow “sessions cookies” on your computer. Please see your manual for instructions on “sessions cookies”.
Currently, there are no major laws to provide privacy protection for search engine data retrieval. However, organizations such as the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse and the Electronic Privacy Information Center are working to change this. Using the information above can help you limit the data that is retrievable by the search engine companies
Congratulations to this Month's Winner
OPEC January Oil Report
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Companies (OPEC), a permanent intergovernmental organization consisting of thirteen member countries across three continents released its oil report for the month of January. The report discusses major issues affecting the world oil market and provides the crude oil market forecast for the coming year.
The OPEC Reference Basket, a weighted average of prices for petroleum produced by OPEC countries, fell $11.16 or 22.4%, closing the month at $35.58.
Global economy in 2009 is forecast at 1.3%, a further reduction of 0.2 percentage points. The World Bank is forecasting trade volumes dropping by 2.1%, the first decline in 25 years.
World oil demand in 2009 is forecasted to see continued negative growth of 0.2 millions of barrels per day (mb/d). The large decline in the OECD consumption, (heaviest in the US ), is expected to counterbalance weaker growth in non-OECD, primarily from China , the Middle East , and other Asian countries. Together, these countries are forecasted to grow by 0.6 mb/d.
In 2009, non-OPEC oil supply is forecast to increase 0.6 mb/d over last year. This follows a decreased amendment of 120 tb/d, due in part to lower expectations for Russia , Azerbaijan , Brazil , Mexico , and Oman .
US commercial oil inventories increased 2 mb in December (from November). US arrivals fell on lower crude oil imports.
Finally, the demand for OPEC crude in 2009 is estimated to average 30.8 mb/d. This is a decline of 0.5 mb/d over the previous year. In 2009, the demand for OPEC crude is expected to average 29.5 mb/d a drop of 1.4 mb/d over the previous year.
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