Friday, August 31, 2007

Decateur's Weekly Business Roundup

Hey everyone, what's up?

I'm sure you're here this week for my regular cutting-edge business reporting. Well, that's not gonna happen. My mom wants the back yard cleaned up for a cookout she's having on Monday, and I just downloaded the Wing Commander Saga demo and I've been sucked into ridding the galaxy of the Kilrathi infestation. In other words, I don't have the time.

So instead of giving you my standard in-depth analysis of the past week's market trends, I'll just shoot you some quick business pointers that I've learned through the years.

1. Never place an E*Trade "buy" order after consuming three or more IPAs - or if you've been taking Vicodin for dental work.

2. Never call your dad up asking for money that you've lost placing "compromised" E*Trade orders.

3. Never place E*Trade orders.

4. Never ask your friend's girlfriend to kiss you after consuming three or more IPAs.

5. Never invest in a tip given to you through an "anonymous" email.

6. Never buy a sailboat unless you enjoy crumpling up hundred dollar bills and throwing them away. (I've never been on a sailboat - I get seasick looking at water - but this what a friend told me.)

Okay, that's if for now. And no, I'm not going to my mom's cookout. I'll be far, far, away when that goes down.

See ya next week. ...Maybe.


(Decateur Thoms is one of the most renowned graduates of the FSIHL (Faking Smart Institute for Higher Learning.) He is an expert thinker, commentator and columnist on a wide range of business subjects and he is recognized by the Faking Smart! Global Fund for his work in helping disadvantaged investors understand the current, global investment marketplace.)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Real World Job-hunting - Google

The next company we look at for potential corporate employment is Google. What does it take to get a job at this internet colossus? Take a look:

Enjoy what you do, where you do it, and the people you do it with.

What is it that you really want to do? Your master plan, not just your 5-year plan. At Google, our strategy is simple: we hire great people and support them in turning their aspirations into reality. We work hard here, and play here, and dream here. Googlers are bright, passionate people with diverse backgrounds, coming together to create a unique culture. One where the open exchange of ideas is encouraged and thinking beyond the norm is expected, no matter what position you happen to hold. Working at Google is as much a mindset as it is a job.

Your Faking Smart! tip: As far as you or I can tell, Google's gradual domination of the universe will take time ...and yes, plenty of employees! That's where you come in. If you've got the Google mindset, you've got the Google job! So think "beyond the norm" when telling them that "coming together" is exactly what you do best. For this company we suggest "turning your aspirations into reality" by utilizing the FSRI-developed personal ad approach. The internet means cutting-edge, cutting edge means sharp, and sharp means sexy! Send in a personal ad/application to this icon of the internet - something revealing your steamier side - and be sure to seal this envelope with some virtual perfume and a kiss. Apply using this open letter format:

Location: (your city)
Occupation: Job-hunter/huntress
Education: B.A. Physics - the movement of bodies
Ethnicity: (your ethnicity)
Speaks: French, Italian, Portuguese, English, C++, html, JavaScript
Relationship Status: Single(?)
Interests: Hyperlinking, web-browsing, working, playing and dreaming hard, Googling (many times a day when I'm alone), dancing, karaoke, hot tubs, candlelight dinners and long kisses.

My Goods
Height: 5 ft 11 in (give or take an inch or two or three)
Body Type: Average - athletic - firm.
Hair Length: Luscious - perfect
Eye Color: Varies, depending on angle of my computer screen.

My Habits
Cigarettes: Prefer not to say
Booze: Prefer not to say
Drugs: Prefer not to say

Age between: 9 and 11
Profession: Master of Worlds
Religion: Scale-free Networks
Ethnicity: Binary
Body Type: Virtual
Have Children: no preference
Want Children: Yes!
Drugs: no
Smoking: no
Drinking: I'm a VERY social drinker

REMEMBER: Google wants you to "enjoy what you do, where you do it, and the people you do it with." It's that simple ..."no matter what position you hold." Look smart for this company (...and sexy, too.) Insist on a good position and don't settle for anything less!

Give us an update on how the application went!


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Real World Job-hunting

If my predictions hold true, the PC (personal computer ...or as I like to call it, the blog box) is one of the hottest products out there, poised to one day find its place in the average American home right alongside the iPod, the X-Box, the vacuum cleaner and the Brazilian spider monkey. And landing a job at a company that caters to this breakthrough technology may be an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of something big!

Claiming to have over 50,000 employees, Microsoft, the marquee marketeer of personal computer programming, is certain to have an opening or two at its sprawling campus. But don't brush down your suit and starch your shirt just yet - Microsoft may have more in store for you than you think! Here's some words from their careers webpage:

Who fits in at Microsoft? All sorts of people, from all over the world. Technical types and creative types. Introverts and extroverts. Rock climbers and movie buffs. People of all backgrounds, who excel in a multitude of fields.

What's the common thread? If you stood all of the 50,000-plus Microsoft employees in front of a large mirror, you would see reflected a collective group that revolves around a few core traits. Those traits may not be secrets to success, but they do provide a framework for what core values are desired at Microsoft.

Your Faking Smart! tip: According to this employee profile it shouldn't be hard to get a job at this software giant. Who fits in a Microsoft? "All sorts of people, from all over the world." (Exchange students.) "Technical types and creative types." (Nerds and Goths.) "Introverts and extroverts." (Loners and the popular kids.) Yes! It may be hard to believe, but from this brief employee breakdown getting a job a Microsoft may be no harder than getting into a sophomore class at highschool! For this company cut to the quick and shoot them a resume that states the bare bones. Be concise (...and back this up with a note from your parents) and tell them that you're transferring from "out of town" and that you're thinking about trying out for the drama club or the cheer-leading squad. Mention that you did some rock climbing with your older brother once and that you totally dig watching movies over doing homework (...yes, you're a movie buff!) When your resume finds its way into the right hands expect a call from principal Gates himself! Then update your vaccination card, get a backpack and get ready for homeroom!

Good luck, and let us know how it goes!

KWA (Guidance Counselor)

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Decateur's Weekly Business Roundup

Hey! Didn't think I'd be back, did you? Whatever...

After a roller-coaster last couple of weeks the DOW finally posted a sizable gain on Friday. This came (many have said) as a result of the government's July housing market report stating that housing sales rose an approximate 2%. Wait. July? You heard me right, these were July numbers ...and what, might you ask, has that to do with the multi-billion dollar bailouts going on in the sub-prime mortgage sector in August? NOTHING. Not a dern thing! So, my fellow investors and seekers of business acumen, strike while the iron is hot and sell, sell, SELL! When August's numbers hit the fan a few weeks from now you'll be glad you did. So drain your bank accounts and liquidate your rare stamp collection and put what cash you've made in a water-tight Teflon container and submerge it in the nearest body of murky water (...not your swimming pool) and wait to see how things pan out.

Which leads me to today's New York Times report indicating a down-turn in home sales prices. This may have a dramatic effect for those who've borrowed on their home equity in anticipation of higher future home prices. But do not worry! As far as my own situation is concerned, I've checked with my mom and she's already paid off the house about eight years ago. In other words, my basement apartment is in NO danger of repossession and my Weekly Roundups will continue unabated as long as I continue to date, keep the lawn mowed and make sure the driveway is shoveled.

In the retail sector, I was startled to hear about The Gap's announcement of a 19% rise in quarterly profits. Is this a result of "back to school" sales? Hardly. This number is something solid and a dependable index of how well this company is run. I should know. I was employed at The Gap in our local shopping mall one summer during high school and the work ethic I helped to instill is, I think, finally showing results. Good work GAP! Keep doting your "Is" and folding your tees.

On a cultural note, I was stunned to read Geoff Colvin's Fortune magasine essay, "Are Americans too Lazy?" In his piece he argued that Americans, by "Global standards," were actually working fewer productive hours than most other countries in the world, and that a hard week's worth of work - 48 or more hours - was almost a thing of the past. He said that Americans don't want to believe that research shows "that we're working much less than we used to." I want to officially take issue with this finding. Admittedly, I'm a pundit and a specialist, so I don't qualify as a factory worker or landscaper. My high education in the field of Faking Smart! allows me certain pundit perks that others often wont see or understand. I do want to say, however, that I spend 60-70 hard hours of work writing this column each week for the FSRI and that I'm proud of my efforts. Yes, my paycheck is small - nearly nonexistent - but I'm American and I'll take my flat wage so long as my conscience remains clean.

Finally, an eulogy for Krispy Kreme. Yes, Great Circle Family Foods, the once largest franchisee of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc., has filed for bankruptcy owing as much as $100 million to as many as 199 creditors. Apparently the "healthy living" movement has taken a bite out of this doughnut powerhouse's bottom line signifying and end of an era. No more will those delicious rings of surgar and trans-fats grace our office break-room tables - no longer will policemen have an excuse to dawdle. Yes, the doughnut may be dead, but love-handles will live on ...and the American may be all the better for it.

Word out,

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Real World Job-hunting

The American automotive industry is considered a staple of American corporate will and determination, and getting on board at one of the "Big Three" would truly be a feather in your corporate hat.

After recent layoffs in the struggling automotive sector, now is the perfect time to "put your pedal to the metal" and make your move. With profits rebounding these companies are on a hiring spree right now and GM is a great place to park your Faking Smart! job-hunting skills. Here's an excerpt from their "Careers at GM..." page:

If out-of-the-ordinary is your inspiration, you’ll have plenty of company at General Motors. We encourage our automotive professionals to breakaway from the mainstream and explore the unimagined. Career possibilities here range from the highest tech … to the most advanced research and sciences … to breakthrough design, engineering and manufacturing … to industry-leading financial and business initiatives. If you have the skills, talent and ambition to extend GM's automotive leadership, come to GM where it’s easy to Love What You Do.

Your Faking Smart! tip: According to this description, GM isn't just a big automotive company's "plenty of company," and if you're inspired by anything "out-of-the-ordinary" you'll make an excellent corporate fit at this monster of American automotive ingenuity. Breakaway from the mainstream application process for this company and show how easy it is for you to "explore the unimagined." What is the most unimaginable thing you could do? Apply directly for their top position! Yes, go straight ahead and send this company an email declaring yourself a candidate for CEO of GM. This would be the last thing anybody would imagine you doing! This inspiration may be "out-of-the-ordinary", but that's exactly what their looking for. Lookout Rick Wagoner, here you come! They'll Love What You Do, and you'll love them for it!

Let us know how it goes, and good luck!


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Real World Job-hunting

As mentioned last week, in the next series of posts we'll examine what specific companies are looking for in their employees. We'll give you some Faking Smart! hints ...then you apply for a job and tell us how it goes.

Today we take a look at one of our country's venerable old companies. IBM. Here's a blurb from their website:

We've identified the core competencies that provide the foundation for an employee's professional growth at IBM. These foundational competencies establish a common standard of excellence across IBM for all employees. The IBM Foundational Competencies are:

* Adaptability
* Client Focus
* Taking Ownership
* Communication
* Drive to Achieve
* Teamwork & Collaboration
* Creative Problem Solving
* Passion for the Business
* Trustworthiness

Your Faking Smart! tip: Yes, IBM may be one of the biggest and oldest companies around, but don't let that intimidate you. If you show IBM that its "foundational competencies" are part of your "foundational" personality, you've got this job in the bag! Along with your standard application throw in an essay to raise HR eyebrows, and address each of your "competencies" in a way they will never forget. Here's an example of what your essay might contain:

* Adaptability: Tell them about your vacation to Cancun last spring break and how quickly you adjusted to the change of climate.

* Client Focus: Do you wear glasses? If you don't you may want to get a pair. Glasses make you look 63% smarter, and mentioning this will earn an HR nod of approval.

* Taking Ownership: Tell them about the things you own. The more things, the better, in this case.

* Communication: Who do you talk to and how often is a topic you might want to bring up when you mention your "foundational competency" in communication. Remember, the more you talk the better, because you'll be doing a lot of it at IBM.

* Drive to Achieve: Do you drive to work every day? If so, tell them how long it takes for your commute ...and if you don't drive to work tell them about the food drive for charity you take part in annually.

* Teamwork & Collaboration: What sports are you involved in? Let them know your scoring average from last season (...and don't be afraid to bump up those totals slightly. Standard corporate exaggeration stands at around 23%.)

* Creative Problem Solving: NEVER admit you have any problems. If they press you during the interview tell them that you bite your nails.

* Passion for the Business: Get creative here and explain to them that the bigger the business is, the more passion you tend to have for it!

* Trustworthiness: Be honest. Write that you've never so much as stolen a post-it note from work. You may even want to bring up a story about returning your neighbor's lost dog or cat. Mentioning pets is a great way to gain emotional points.

So, there you have it. IBM here you come! Apply and tell us your story. We'll be eager to hear how well you did!


Friday, August 17, 2007

Decateur's Weekly Business Roundup

Hello everyone. Yep, it's the Roundup again. Guess I should get out of bed...

Might as well get to it. The Dow is up 233 points today thanks to the kindly intervention by Big Ben Bernanke and his posse down at the Federal Reserve. My advice this week regarding stocks: BUY! Yes, buy, buy, buy! Take whatever money you can get your hands on and put it in stocks. Blue Chips, OTCs, whatever you can buy, do it! Drain your bank accounts, dig up your chest from your back yard, sell your homes and indenture your children if you have to. This market is hot and not getting on board now is like watching a party train pull out of the station with you sitting back in bitter resentment for not having bought a ticket.

Which brings me to the announcement by Hewlett-Packard that its profits are up 29% for the quarter. This is big news for many reasons. When printer sales are up count on buoyant consumer confidence, because when people are happy they write. They write poems and books and pamphlets announcing weddings, birthdays and barn-buildings. Look for a spike in paper stocks, book publishing equities and corporate stock certificate printing interests.

Regarding grimmer news, this week New York Police Commissioner, Raymond Kelly, declared that "the internet is the new Afghanistan." This came as a shock to me being I'm a regular user of the internet and frequent poster on the more relevant blogs. If this is true, and that the Taliban are out there watching my every move ...just waiting to run a virtual suicide truck bomb into this site, I wonder if the small remittance I receive from the FSRI is worth the risk? Karzai, if you can hear me, you have my vote if you keep my web-activity IED-free.

Lastly, according to the Wall Street Journal, It's been said that Whole Foods has been approved to purchase competitor Wild Oats Market Inc. This will help the organic retailer to improve its market niche and to strengthen its brand against up-and-coming "organic" competition such as Kroger Foods. The downside is that the CEO of Whole Foods, John Mackey, has been caught promoting his company by using an internet alias on various stock watcher forums. Apparently, through use an anagram of his wife's name Deborah, he's been posting company-touting blurbs to boost Whole Food reputation and consumer attention to its brand. This is totally unacceptable. To use the internet (and especially the comment section in blogs) as a self-marketing tool is beyond moral consideration. And, as for that, to publish "anonymous" comments that pretend to be random public comments is an even more despicable act.

See ya next week.

Decateur Thoms

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Real World Job-hunting

So, now you know how to get corporate work by Faking Smart! In the past weeks we've explored many strategies for job-hunting, now, let's put your skills to the test. In the next series of posts we'll examine what specific companies are looking for in their employees. We'll give you some Faking Smart! hints ...then apply for a job and tell us how it went!

First off, we look at GE. Here is an excerpt from their website describing what kind of person would make a good member of the GE team:

Whatever your career goal, GE is a company big enough for your dreams. Our six businesses span industries as broadly as they span countries. We are continually looking for people of passion and imagination to help create the future of healthcare, entertainment, finance, energy, communications, and more.

Your Faking Smart! tip: GE is a mega-conglomerate, therefore, you have to think like a mega-conglomerate thinks and think big ...big enough for your dreams. For this company forget the formal application process and get creative. There are four key words in this employee description: dreams, passion, imagination and future. They say that a picture says a thousand words, so snap a picture of yourself representing each of these "themes." Take a picture of yourself sleeping (dreams), take a picture of yourself kissing some random person on the street (passion), take a picture of yourself looking up at the sky (imagination) and, finally, take a picture of yourself in a Star Wars costume (future).

You've got four pictures that show you're a perfect fit for this company. Transfer them to 8"x10"s, put them in an envelope with your name and address and send it to GE's HR department and see how quickly they get back to you!

Good luck!, and be sure to tell us what job you got and your general salary range.


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Faking Smart! Secret Job-hunting Method

At last we come to the final method in our discussion about job-hunting.

For years now the FSRI has been researching and studying different strategies for getting an employee the corporate job he or she should be looking for. During this period we have also found it beneficial to develop and test our own job-hunting strategies and tactics. With the highest levels of scientific rigor, we have proposed hypotheses, tested out theories and then presented the statistics necessary to substantiate our initial assumptions. What we have revealed could easily be considered shocking. The Faking Smart! Secret Job-hunting Method is one of these ground-shattering discoveries.

Whether finding a job through cold calling, internet searches, networking or through temp agencies, the job-hunter has a range of tools at his or her disposal. Each of these methods, however, leads to a lengthy process of phone interviews, applications, drug-testing, resume submissions, face-to-face interviews and eventually salary negotiations - all time-consuming and energy-draining activities. When using the Faking Smart! Secret Job-hunting Method you circumvent this often beleaguering protocol!

A word of caution: While the Secret Job-hunting Method is best suited for entry-level company positions, it may be comfortably used at any tier of the corporate employee hierarchy. Also, when implementing the Secret Method be sure, as always, to adhere closely to the Faking Smart! guidelines.

The Faking Smart! Secret Job-hunting Method is this:

When you find out that a company has an opening for a particular position, simply put on some nice clothes, collect a few "office things" together in a small box and show up for work! Yes! it's that simple! When you hear of a job opening just show up and start working!

The hidden truth, discovered by the FSRI, is that human resource departments loath the hiring process. By simply entering the building, finding a cubicle or office and sitting down to work you are presenting yourself as a "corporate gift!" HR doesn't have to verify references, trudge through lengthy cover letters or get reports back on questionable urine samples ...and management doesn't have to steal valuable time away from what they do best - MANAGE!

When you show up and start work - absent the awkward emailing, interviewing and clumsy handshaking - you are telling the company that "you know the game! and you are eager to play." AND LOOK - YOU'VE ELIMINATED THE APPLICATION AND INTERVIEW PROCESS IN ONE FELL SWOOP! Sure, you may ruffle a few feathers, but just like a lost wildebeest relocating its herd, you're quickly assimilated and ready to rejoin the stampede!

So, there you have it - the long-awaited Faking Smart! Secret Job-hunting Method. This is just one of the thousands upon thousands of FSRI-developed business strategy methods, and the more of these strategies and methods you use in your daily business life the better and better you become at Faking Smart!


Saturday, August 11, 2007

Decateur's Weekly Business Roundup

Hey, how's it going. Guess it's time for me to give my weekly "roundup"?

I know, I know ...the market is crashing and you're afraid that your investment portfolio is ready to submerge. According to news reports the subprime-mortgage crisis has sent global financial markets into a tailspin over credit market woes. My advice: SELL! Dump it all - dump your stocks, your mutual funds, your annuities and your kid's college bonds and convert it into something solid like Pepsie-powered trucks or ant farm home-heating systems. Or follow your instincts and do what I did: take all your money out of the bank and bury it in a chest under the oak tree in your back yard where no one will find it.

Which brings me to the bumper crop of corn the country is set to produce this year in response to high ethanol demand. According the the Wall Street Journal corn production will yield enough to fill 183,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools. This may be good for corn futures investors, but for those suffering mid-westerners wanting to escape the summer heat this is a blow to human dignity. Ever tried swimming in a pool of corn? Not me, and I don't want to - even if it's creamed corn. Look for a down-turn in pool toy accessory stocks.

And this may be the reason the government has announced that jobless claims have increased. The Wall Street Journal also reports that jobless claims are up this week by 7,000 to 316,000. How much do you want to wager that most of these claimants are out-of-work lifeguards?

Lastly, according to the Washington Post the Bush administration has instigated a policy of clamping down on illegal immigrant workers. Measures include "raising fines for knowingly hiring illegal workers, streamlining current guest-worker programs, bolstering an electronic system employers can use to verify workers' legal status, and adding 370 miles of border fencing, 300 miles of vehicle barriers and 1,700 Border Patrol agents." In short, look for skyrocketing home-building costs, a spike in produce prices, a shortage of home health-care workers, a down-grade in salsa taste and quality and renewed scrutiny of Taco Bell's "think outside the bun" policy.

See you next week.


Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Faking Smart! Secret Method to Successful Job-Hunting

...will not be revealed today. But it will be very soon. In the meantime I wanted to bring up an issue that's been haunting the blogosphere for the last week ...the outing of the fake Steve Jobs on the blog

As a commenter brought up in the previous post, do we know if a blogger is what he or she claims to be? And if a blogger is "faking" his or her identity, why?, and for what reason would someone go to such lengths to deceive?

Like many of you, I've been a big fan of the fake Steve Jobs. Eagerly reading his posts has been included as one of my morning rituals ...tucked right in with steeping my cup of larch leaf tea and reading a passage of Tacitus to Spinoza. But this unmasking of the "fake" Steve has created a kind of crisis of confidence. It is a struggle for me to look at a profile now and believe what I see. Is, for example, the Barack Obama portrayed on his "official" website really the presidential candidate Obama, or is it someone else? - Hillary?! Is the Perez Hilton I see at Perez's site really the attention-seeking narcissist I think it is ...or is there someone else pulling the strings behind those cherubic jowls? Is the Frogster really a blogging frog?

Which brings me to the question of this very site. The FSRI blogging division, with the hundreds of employees that work hard day and night to make sure this blog is one of the best on the net, has asked me to reassure you that Faking Smart! in Corporate America is exactly what it is, nothing more. There's no fakery going on here. What you see is what you get ...the real Faking Smart!, and not the fake Faking Smart!. The ideas you see every day on this site are completely genuine and verifiable - 107% checked and double checked by our team at the FSRI labs. If we didn't take these measures we would risk an erosion of blogger trust. And that is the last thing we, or anybody wants...

Thanks for letting me bend your ear.

KWA and the FSRI

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Job-Hunting Through Temp Agencies

Last week we talked about researching the job market through cold calling. Today we discuss the method of using a temp agency, or temporary employment agency, to help you land a job.

In the last decade or two temporary employment agencies have become a mainstay in helping people to find good, solid corporate work. Through an intimate understanding of the job market temp agencies are in the unique position to pair employee with employer - pair strengths with needs, experience with expectation - thereby creating an excellent employee/employer match. Just about anyone you talk to today has had some sort of experience with a temporary agency, and while some might describe this relationship as, at times, strained, many, if not most, find it rewarding, and, under the right circumstances, the perfect resource for "getting a foot in the corporate door." If employer and employee turn out to get along, (and the temp agency gives its nod of approval) a temporary position can quickly translate into permanent corporate placement.

One aspect in working for a temp agency that many find difficult to understand is the fact that, even though you may be working at a company, you are still the "bonded" employee of your temp agency. The company pays the temp agency for your work, the agency takes its cut and returns your percentage.

In this sense, the operational model for most temporary agencies goes back a long way ...way back to one of the oldest professions in history. It has been said the the earliest of "escort", or "companion" services incorporated what we now understand to be temp workers. By matching employer with employee, or by "putting the worker out to turn a trick," the agency, or pimp, would take a monetary cut on the service provided by his or her temp and then hand over what he or she felt was adequate compensation.

Today, as the business world continues to flourish, so will temp agencies right along with it!


And thanks, Decateur for your previous post. We'll all be looking forward to the next!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Decateur's Weekly Business Roundup

Thanks for joining me here at the Weekly Roundup. I hope everybody had a good week. I didn't, but that's not important.

Right off the bat, I was glad to hear that Hainan Airlines is getting ready to offer non-stop service between Seattle and Beijing starting next June. I predict this will help the stagnant Chinese food industry in the Northwest by cutting delivery times (and cost) by a lot. (And yes, this will totally increase delivery ranges as well...) Time to buy into Chinese food stock if you haven't already. I suggest The Mandarin Buffet or The Great Wall as top picks.

Which brings me to the Chinese toy recall announced by Mattel last week. According to CNN Mattel is recalling 1.5 million toys sold in the U.S. due to paint tainted with lead. I don't know this kid but why he needs so many Chinese toys is beyond me. And the dad that has to bring all those toys back to the store deserves what's coming to him. In my generation spoiling a kid like that was unheard of. We didn't have toys back then, either. They weren't allowed in the closet where I grew up, and I'm pretty sure the same went for my imaginary friends.

As for landscaping news, The Wall Street Journal announced on Friday that hedge funds were able to "rack up big profits" despite the gloomy forecast on the economy. Which proves my theory, that no matter how bad things are out there people will always find money when they need their lawn cut. Hedges are worse than lawns, but if you want my opinion, there should be more funds and fewer hedges. Get rid of your hedges, guys, and put your money where it will do you some good in the livestock market.

Now, for the street-beat new product hunt I came across this little nugget about duct tape accessories in the NY Times. For those of us (yes, that includes me) who have invested steeply in the scotch tape and electric tape industries, this bad news. Now that duct tape has gotten over its "innovation hurdle" and gone into diversified product status I suggest dumping your tape interests and sticking back to the old glue sector. No, can't make a handbag out of glue, but then again, you can't glue a quarter to the floor with a handbag.

Lastly, KWA the FSRI and myself send out our condolences to the victims of the bridge collapse in Minneapolis. The good news is that this catastrophe has raised awareness of the poor condition of many of our country's bridges. The bad news is that the new 35West bridge is not expected to be finished till 2009. Expect big delays for anybody still trying to get to work by this route. You'll need to find a place to park, a rubber raft and somebody to pick you up on the other bank once you've made it across. I don't know about you but that sounds like a rough commute ...just to get to work, pour yourself a cup of joe and fall asleep for eight hours before going through the whole thing again. Look for a spike in rubber raft and lifesaver manufacturer equities.

Decateur Thoms "The Networker"

Until Mr. Thoms adjusts to posting regularly on the interweb he will be posting through the FSRI's official account.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Faking Smart! - Making Your Business Ours

As we have shown, In the last couple of decades the paradigm for finding good, solid corporate work has shifted away from the days when it was necessary to call up the old party boss and request that he "grease a few gears on the old corporate machine" to get your foot in the door at company X, Y or Z. The internet and modern telecommunications has done away with such tawdry political back-tickling. Today boasts a better era - an era where getting corporate work is as democratic as apple pie era where simply eating apple pie gives you many more options than if you weren't eating apple pie. (Blueberry pie is also good.) The point is, we at the FSRI don't really care what you are eating when out of the office. What we do care about is that you are in your office and that you are Faking Smart! safely and successfully, and to do so you need corporate work, and to find corporate work you need to be - YES - Faking Smart!

For the millions of regular readers who pay moderate attention to the strategies and ruminations that occur here on nearly a daily basis, you may not realize it but you are party to a revolution in thought itself. When you stare blankly into the vortical might of the FSRI's schemes and claims you are witnessing the breakdown of logic and the buildup of a higher and more expedient corporate epistemology. The more you read the clearer it gets! And the clearer it gets the less you want to read about it! Get it?


Next up: Temp Agencies and Decateur Thoms's weekly business roundup.


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Job-hunting vs. Headhunting

The FSRI wanted me to clarify a few items from yesterday's post. While discussing job-hunting strategies I cited the Wikipedia definition of "cold calling" as "...something a headhunter might do." This is correct. Headhunters cold call, and they cold call often, do many job-hunters. But this shouldn't confuse the issue.

Here are the official FSRI definitions for these two types of people:

Job-hunter: This is someone actively seeking employment at a company or corporation. A job-hunter hunts for jobs - seeks employment - using traditional methods of finding work. Once a job-hunter has found a job he or she is no longer a job-hunter but is now a fully fledged employee with all the perks and benefits the position may bestow.

Headhunter: A company employs a headhunter when it doesn't want to deal with the awkward business of firing one of its own employees. A professional headhunter is brought on to "serve an undesirable employee's head on a platter" to the upper brass, thereby completing the company's dirty work. If a company or corporation is large enough there may be a full-time staff of headhunters at the corporate board's disposal.

Now, there may be an instance where a job-hunter is job-hunting for a headhunter position. If you have a professional headhunting license (...and you have the stomach for it) this can be a lucrative and fulfilling career. But be forewarned ...if you ever get a cold call from a headhunter you haven't met before, clean out your desk and start job-hunting again before things get messy.