Workplace Issues Of The Week


The health care sector has been one of the few bright spots in this otherwise depressed job market. Over the past 12 months, health care employment has grown by nearly 300,000 workers, while most other sectors continue to shed jobs. As the debate over health care reform rages on across the country, few have examined what the proposed changes will mean for job creation. Part of the problem with attempting to determine how health care reform will impact employment is that no one knows what the final legislation will contain. However, if the bill that passes accomplishes one of the primary goals of reform, which is to get the millions of uninsured some type of health coverage, then we are most likely going to see a rise in the demand and use of health care services. This, in turn, will increase the need for more health care workers, particularly those specializing in preventive care and long-term care. What are the pros and cons regarding health care reform when it comes to small business? Which health care occupations could see the biggest boom from health care reform?


With the NFL season opening games less than two weeks away, Fantasy Football participants across the country are finalizing their draft picks and preparing for 17 weeks of point tracking, roster shuffling and player trades. With many Fantasy Footballers using their workplace Internet to research players and make mid-week team moves, what will the impact be on office productivity? Should employers be worried or should they find a way to embrace the growing popularity of Fantasy Football and use it as a morale- and camaraderie-building activity?


On the surface today’s announced merger between Disney and Marvel Comics appears to be a win-win for all parties. And it may indeed prove to be one, as Disney is able to benefit from increasingly successful comic book franchises, while Marvel obtains the unparalleled marketing strength of Disney. However, one challenge could be difficult to overcome: the task of combining what are likely to be highly divergent cultures of the two corporations. The clash of corporate cultures has been a contributing factor in many mergers that failed to deliver on expectations, including the ill-fated marriage between Time-Warner and AOL. How do companies decide if they are a good fit for each other? Are job cuts likely to follow the closing of the merger? What should employees of both companies be doing now and after the merger to increase job security?

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