The Latest from FreeEnterprise.com

Is Your State One of America's Energy Leaders? (Infographic)

Jan 31, 2014

Thanks to surging production in the country’s oil and gas shale regions, the U.S. is importing significantly less oil and bolstering its energy independence. The Energy Information Agency expects U.S. crude imports this year to average 6.7 million barrels a day, down by nearly a million barrels a day from 2013 averages. The decline comes amid a boom in oil and gas production in places such as North Dakota, where monthly output has nearly quadrupled over the past four years.

Forget a Mentor. Find a Sponsor if You Want to Succeed

Jan 27, 2014

Have you found your sponsor yet?

Not a mentor, a sponsor. Sure, a mentor is important in helping to define your dream and understand your world. But it’s a sponsor that’s the dream-enabler, says Sylvia Ann Hewlett, a scholar, author and president and CEO of the Center for Talent Innovation (CTI). A sponsor is key for really fast-tracking your career, she says, connecting you with the right people and supporting your ascent.

Fitness Pay for Play: Monetary Incentives Encourage Corporate Wellness Participation

Jan 24, 2014

Corporate wellness programs can help reduce healthcare expenses, but will employees actually use them? To enhance the effectiveness of these programs, a growing number of companies are offering monetary incentives for participation.

A cash payment or reduction in the employee's health insurance premium can be a powerful motivator, says Dr. Fik Isaac, vice president for global health services at Johnson & Johnson, the world's sixth-largest consumer health company.

Shootout in Austin: Startups are Raring to Take on Major Challenges

Jan 22, 2014

The Texas sun is dipping below the horizon, setting the 16th floor of this Austin skyscraper ablaze.

Twenty-eight startups from all over the region have been working on their quick-draw one-minute pitches all day.

Now, in the moments before the Challenge Cup pitch competition begins, the startups are circling each other warily—a process made easier by the circular layout of Austin-based incubator and Challenge Cup host, Capital Factory.

Treehouse Rules: Red Frog Events Gives the Lowdown on Time Management

Jan 17, 2014

FreeEnterprise.com got to know Red Frog Events when the active entertainment company won the Chamber’s DREAM BIG Small Business of the Year award. The infectiously fun Chicago-based firm has created events including the Warrior Dash and Great Urban Race—it has also created an enviable company culture.

Tony Hsieh’s $350 Million Gamble on Las Vegas

Jan 16, 2014

On a cool November evening, a stream of runners wearing bright neon clothing and glowing accessories made their way along Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas for the city’s Rock’ N’ Roll Run. Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos, weaved through the crowd and walked up to the 40-foot preying mantis that spews out fire and guards Container Park on 7th Street.

What You Missed at CES

Jan 13, 2014

It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). With over 2 million square feet of convention space covered by 3,000 exhibitors premiering thousands of gadgets and gizmos, it is a convention of really cool stuff.

But these technologies are more than just cool stuff. They are breakthroughs, innovations, discoveries, creations, and inventions that require substantial resources and manpower to bring to life. If you ask the entrepreneurs and innovators behind these gadgets, they’ll tell you that they are so much more than "stuff." 

From the Shadow of Wall Street: New York’s Resurgent Startup Scene

Jan 14, 2014

The financial crisis rocked New York City. Tens of thousands of high-paying corporate jobs disappeared, leaving legions of smart, highly educated, and ambitious workers contemplating their next career moves. Many gave up on finding a steady 9-to-5 gig and directed their energy and talent elsewhere, thus planting the seeds of a resurgent startup culture that is blossoming today.

Phoenix Rises on the Back of Housing Recovery

Jan 13, 2014

Phoenix is rising. The Arizona capital is on the rebound, thanks in part to the healing housing market that was among the hardest hit by the economic downturn.

Just ask Tom Sertich, president of Kirk Development Company, a custom design/build remodeling company based in Phoenix, who has seen an increase in business over the past year.

"People are starting to go forward with remodeling projects,” said Sertich. “They are more confident now that they have more equity in their home."

Is NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio Putting Charter Schools on the Chopping Block?

Jan 10, 2014

“I simply wouldn’t favor charters the way Mayor Bloomberg did because, in the end, our city rises or falls on our traditional public schools,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a debate just before his landslide election.

He wouldn’t? Charter schools have experienced dramatic success, growing from 17 schools in 2002 to 183 today. Demand has grown equally rapidly, with 69,000 families applied for just 18,600 slots last year.

Cost of Trade on eBay Plummets, Helping Mom and Pop Shop Go Global

Jan 9, 2014

The iconic image of a small business as a mom-and-pop store selling its wares in a small town hardly resembles the Internet-fueled global trading that drives many lean operations today. Yet engaging in global trade can be challenging for small enterprises, says Brian Bieron, senior director of global public policy at eBay Inc.

5 Startup Lessons for Fast-Growing Companies

Dec 31, 2013

Within our first month of publicly launching Ministry of Supply in June 2012, we sold more than 6,000 shirts and gained 4,000 customers. Our company grew fast because it had to. We were an adolescent trapped in a baby’s body — we had to learn how to sprint before we could learn how to walk, and we had some serious growing pains as we tried to scale production from 300 to 6,000 shirts a month. However, we quickly realized that by empowering our customers and empowering our company, we could truly grow the way we wanted. Everything we do comes down to empowering people to be their best.

The Happiness Resolution

Jan 2, 2014

Now that the ball has dropped and confetti has been swept up, it’s time to implement those 2014 resolutions. Whether you are looking to strike up a meaningful relationship with a treadmill or get serious about a budget, the intent of any New Year’s resolution is to increase personal happiness.

Before you finalize your 2014 plans (or before you abandon them), take a look at American Enterprise Institute President Arthur Brooks’ take on happiness.

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