Voices

How to refresh a brand, without blowing things up

By DAVID A. CHAUVIN // Just like your wardrobe, your company needs a makeover every now and then. Industry changes, trends come and go, technology evolves. There’s a good chance that what appeared cutting-edge 10 years ago seems hopelessly outdated now. And if your branding, marketing materials or even company name gives an out-of-touch impression, that’s how your customers will think of you – no matter how state-of-the-art your work or products. The trick is…


Pods? Grande pumpkin things? Not cool, beans

By AMBROSE CLANCY // I have become what I feared I would become. A coffee snob. Not that person at Starbucks ordering a grande macchiato pumpkin spice with dark chocolate shavings – please – but the one who can’t drink bad coffee. My friend, bon vivant Jim Murray of Dublin and Brussels, lives by the code of refusing things on the basis of LITS (Life Is Too Short). For him, it applies mostly to mediocre…


A preemptive approach to postsecondary success

By HARRY AURORA // For some, preparation for postsecondary education starts at a young age. Many children who aspire to be doctors, lawyers and scientists understand the required commitment to academic achievement, and that it continues well beyond high school. These particular students typically have not only the support of their family members, but also a role model – a teacher or guidance counselor, perhaps, instilling in them a drive to achieve at their highest…


College or work? Maybe the path isn’t so cut-and-dry

By ROSALIE DRAGO // As costs rise and debt mounts, debate rages about the “necessity” of college. Throw in a worker shortage in technical occupations that don’t require degrees, and the lines are clearly drawn for most high school graduates: work vs. college. Usually absent from the conversation is another pathway to a degree: work, then college. It’s easy to understand why. Most people, parents in particular, believe anything short of college limits future opportunities….


The long and short of it: Yes, Millennials pay attention

By DAVID CHAUVIN // Of all the misconceptions about Millennials – a group that will comprise 50 percent of the workforce by 2020 – the one that annoys me most is that the generation possesses a gnat-like attention span. This stereotype is nonsense, to put it bluntly. As much as I loathe the misconception, however, I see why people believe it. Millennials are, after all, the generation of Twitter, Vine (RIP) and bite-sized viral Facebook…


As suspensions mount, schools have homework to do

By HARRY AURORA // One of the most extreme ways to discipline a student is the out-of-school suspension – but this punishment only bandages a problem, without actually fixing it. With little to no academic guidance at home, suspended students often suffer long-term negative consequences. Suspensions should only be used as a last resort – and if it’s absolutely necessary, schools should take steps to ensure that students are learning from their mistakes, and learning…


Brand authentication: Keeping it real in the Digital Age

By DAVID CHAUVIN // In theory, being authentic should be easy. How hard can it be to be yourself – the one person you know better than anyone? Unfortunately, marketing history is full of stories of otherwise-sound brands misunderstanding themselves or the customer relationships – time and time and time again. In search of advertising buzz, a brand refresh or the ever-elusive viral marketing campaign, marketers will often lose sight of what draws people to…


From T’s to tats, dress codes are key for entrepreneurs

By EUGENE BARNOSKY // An entrepreneur’s mission statement – core values, branding, image – is important, particularly regarding employees’ personal appearances. And a manual that communicates to employees what is expected of them from the outset is often critical to efforts to assemble an efficient and effective staff, and to provide them with the tools they need to help create good will with clients and customers – and maintain it. Although it may not be…


As workforce development evolves, childcare shall lead

By ROSALIE DRAGO // At a recent Long Island Regional Development Council meeting, co-chairman and Long Island Association President Kevin Law earned rousing applause when he said, “Childcare is not a mother’s problem or a parent’s problem – it is an economic-development problem and our region’s problem.” As a workforce-development professional, a parent and a Long Islander, this was good to hear. It’s tempting to see childcare as a value-add, especially now. Current job market…


Physician recruitment: Money talks, but lifestyle rules

By ROBERT GLAZER // Recruiting and maintaining top talent defines a company and the quality of its services – and nowhere is that more apparent than in healthcare, where physician shortages remain a primary concern. By investing heavily in recruitment, medical practices across the country can ensure that they obtain and maintain the best of the best. Experience shows that today’s doctors value more than just compensation, though finances are definitely a key part of…


As SAT-prep costs soar, a classroom-based solution

By HARRY AURORA // If this spring’s much-publicized college admissions scandal highlights anything, it’s that competition to get into the nation’s top schools is fierce, with the cost of admission seemingly as high as the price of matriculation. Extreme examples aside, it’s no secret that college preparation favors the wealthy. Private instruction and tutors provide a competitive advantage to students and families who can afford them; some tutors’ rates start at $1,000 per hour, and…


Trust fading, brand reps bank on Social Responsibility

By DAVID CHAUVIN // For a professional communicator, nothing is more important than trust. Have it, and your message can be powerful and effective; lose it, and, well, your career might be over. But it’s not that simple. Trust – specifically, how to maintain it – is a complicated subject in 2019. Our country is characterized by a stubborn, entrenched polarization that encourages us to label any media outlet, personality or influencer espousing different viewpoints…


Don’t be ‘that guy,’ wine-taster – sip, spit like a pro

By AMBROSE CLANCY // You’ve seen him – and it’s almost always a him – sitting at a restaurant table with a glass of wine. As the waiter stands holding a bottle, our man shakes and swirls the wine into a whirlpool, then sticks his nose into the glass and inhales as if drawing his last breath. He sips some wine, his cheeks puff out, he propels the wine around his mouth and then –…


To avoid legal pitfalls, startups need the right guides

By EUGENE BARNOSKY // Chances are, as you prepare to launch your startup company, you will be eager to attack and complete the projects on your to-do list: draft a business plan, build a website, design a workspace, create a logo, brand your company, all tasks that most new entrepreneurs undertake with enthusiasm. But many overlook the legal issues that could be critical to a smooth takeoff. Maybe because they don’t stir the creative juices….


‘Manifesto’ destiny: colorblind economic development

By ROSALIE DRAGO // Cities across the nation are committing to an “Equity Manifesto,” not just as a matter of social fairness but a matter of economic survival. Equity and inclusion, as they relate to economic development, mean ensuring that all people can fully participate in the creation of socioeconomic growth – and fully share in its benefits. So, as Long Island’s demographics shift and minority populations grow, where are we on this? According to…