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Highlights—November 29, 2008

  • New York Times: G.M.’s Pension Fund Stays Afloat, Against the Odds. By Mary Williams Walsh. Excerpt: When General Motors left Washington empty-handed last week, among the lingering questions was whether its huge pension fund could topple and crush the government’s pension insurance program. When any pension fund fails, usually as part of a bankruptcy, the government takes over its assets as well as its payments to retirees. In G.M.’s case, its plan would dwarf the nation’s pension insurance fund.

    Still, G.M. appears to have enough money in the pension fund to pay its more than 400,000 retirees their benefits for many years — even with the markets swooning around it. That is largely because of the conservative way G.M. has managed the fund recently, and it explains why G.M. has not joined the long list of companies pressing Congress for pension relief.

  • Computerworld: Apple's new VP could cause 'irreparable harm' to IBM, says judge. Unsealed opinion spells out concerns over former IBM exec's role. By Gregg Keizer. Excerpts: In the opinion, Karas explained why he granted IBM's request for a preliminary injunction that blocked Papermaster from working for Apple, where he was to head iPod and iPhone hardware development. Last month, IBM sued Papermaster, claiming that a noncompetition agreement he signed in 2006 barred him from working for competitors for a year after leaving the company. According to IBM, Papermaster had information of "highly confidential IBM trade secrets" that would "irreparably harm" the company if he's allowed to work for Apple.

    Karas said that that the injunction was justified. "Because Mr. Papermaster has been inculcated with some of IBM's most sensitive and closely guarded technical and strategic secrets, it is no great leap for the Court to find that Plaintiff has met its burden of showing a likelihood of irreparable harm," Karas wrote.

  • CNET News: IBM and Apple chip competitors? Not quite. By Tom Krazit. Excerpts: Despite the fact that Apple has yet to produce an iPhone chip based on its own design, and that IBM doesn't design smartphone chips, the judge overseeing the Mark Papermaster noncompete case views the two companies as chip competitors. ...

    There's no dispute that Papermaster signed a noncompete agreement in 2006 that would forbid him from working at any company deemed a competitor of IBM's for a year following his departure from Big Blue. Papermaster's lawyers are attempting to argue that since the only overlapping product between Apple and IBM--servers--is one that wouldn't be part of his official duties at Apple, and since he won't be running Apple's P.A. Semi chip design team, the noncompete shouldn't apply.

  • Yahoo! IBM Retiree Information Exchange: "Re: Pension reform" by Kathi Cooper. Full excerpt: George Miller is awesome. During my fight with the Cash Balance lawsuit, George Miller was there for us. I had a press conference with him and he testified for us at the US Treasury hearing on Cash Balance Plans. See and judge for yourself! Here are some videos of his House speeches on our pensions and retirement.

    This first one shows him in action on a motion to instruct to the PPA, particularly good: Go to http://georgemiller.house.gov/georgefloorspeeches.html and click on #13-dated 05/03/2006.

    The next one is a special floor speech he gave against IBM and the inequities of the Cash Balance Pension Plan, just for us: Go to http://georgemiller.house.gov/georgefloorspeeches.html and click on #14-dated 04/06/2006.

    Others are #3, #19, #34 and #40. He knows what is happening with our retirement nest eggs. He is in our corner. YOU watch the videos. YOU judge.

  • U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor: Preserving and Strengthening 401(k)s and Retirement Plans. Excerpt: In October 2008, the House Education and Labor Committee held hearings to examine how the financial crisis is affecting Americans’ retirement savings plans, including 401(k)-style and traditional defined benefit pension plans. At the Committee’s first hearing the Congressional Budget Office testified that American workers have lost as much as $2 trillion in retirement savings in the last fifteen months. At the follow-up hearing, Chairman George Miller revealed that the U.S. Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation said it lost at least $5 billion in stock investments during the last fiscal year through August, and invested a significant portion of its funds in mortgage-backed securities.
News and Opinion Concerning Health Savings Accounts, Medical Costs and Health Care Reform
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  • Washington Post: 5 Myths About Our Ailing Health-Care System. By Shannon Brownlee and Ezekiel Emanuel. Excerpt: With Congress ready to spend $700 billion to prop up the U.S. economy, enacting health-care reform may seem about as likely as the Dow hitting 10,000 again before the end of the year. But it may be more doable than you think, provided we dispel a few myths about how health care works and how much reform Americans are willing to stomach.
  • New York Times: Medicare’s Too Costly Private Plans. Excerpts: Private health insurance plans were supposed to bring better care and lower costs to elderly patients covered by Medicare. Instead they have increased the cost and complexity of the program without improving care, according to new analyses published by the respected journal Health Affairs. Congress clearly has more work to do to remove unjustified subsidies that prop up many of the most inefficient private plans. ...

    Medicare currently pays the private plans — now called the Medicare Advantage program — 13 percent more on average than the same services would cost in the traditional fee-for-service program. Some of the added payments are used to provide extra benefits for enrollees, like reduced cost-sharing or reduced premiums for such extra benefits as vision and dental care. ...

    As these plans have proliferated, Medicare’s costs to cover the subsidies have risen — with the taxpayers and the beneficiaries in traditional Medicare picking up the tab. The many competing plans have also increased Medicare’s bureaucratic burden and costs. And there is no sign that these plans provide better quality of care. Congress started this year to reduce the unjustified subsidies. But a lot more needs to be done. President-elect Barack Obama called during the campaign for eliminating the excessive subsidies and paying private plans only what it would cost to treat the same patients under traditional Medicare.

News and Opinion Concerning the U.S. Financial Crisis
Minimize "It is a restatement of laissez-faire-let things take their natural course without government interference. If people manage to become prosperous, good. If they starve, or have no place to live, or no money to pay medical bills, they have only themselves to blame; it is not the responsibility of society. We mustn't make people dependent on government- it is bad for them, the argument goes. Better hunger than dependency, better sickness than dependency."

"But dependency on government has never been bad for the rich. The pretense of the laissez-faire people is that only the poor are dependent on government, while the rich take care of themselves. This argument manages to ignore all of modern history, which shows a consistent record of laissez-faire for the poor, but enormous government intervention for the rich." From Economic Justice: The American Class System, from the book Declarations of Independence by Howard Zinn.

  • New York Times: Lest We Forget, by Paul Krugman. A few months ago I found myself at a meeting of economists and finance officials, discussing — what else? — the crisis. There was a lot of soul-searching going on. One senior policy maker asked, “Why didn’t we see this coming?” There was, of course, only one thing to say in reply, so I said it: “What do you mean ‘we,’ white man?” ...

    One answer to these questions is that nobody likes a party pooper. While the housing bubble was still inflating, lenders were making lots of money issuing mortgages to anyone who walked in the door; investment banks were making even more money repackaging those mortgages into shiny new securities; and money managers who booked big paper profits by buying those securities with borrowed funds looked like geniuses, and were paid accordingly. Who wanted to hear from dismal economists warning that the whole thing was, in effect, a giant Ponzi scheme? ...

    In fact, both the crisis of 1997-98 and the bursting of the dot-com bubble probably had the perverse effect of making both investors and public officials more, not less, complacent. Because neither crisis quite lived up to our worst fears, because neither brought about another Great Depression, investors came to believe that Mr. Greenspan had the magical power to solve all problems — and so, one suspects, did Mr. Greenspan himself, who opposed all proposals for prudential regulation of the financial system.

New on the Alliance@IBM Site
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  • Job Cuts Status & Comments page
    • Comment 11/23/08: We were also told that 100% of our project (IGS GA) is losing jobs to the GDC (Global Delivery Center) in 2009. We were also told that our jobs are being off-shored to free up resources for "all the US commercial business we are losing". What a joke. Do they think we're such idiots that we would believe that? IBM execs smell like Bush...arrogant, dirty, and self-serving. -Anonymous-
    • Comment 11/24/08: Just received an email Friday night from my contracting company, CDI, stating that IBM was cutting my pay because of the "economic downturn". What a bunch of horse s**t!! Anyone else get a recent cut this week? -IH8T3IBM-
    • Comment 11/24/08: IH8T3IBM- IBM probably reduced the bill rate on the PO with CDI. CDI probably reduced your salary to keep their 'profit' the same. Either way, we (the average worker) gets the short end of the stick. Working for a contracting firm, working for IBM truly stinks. You get screwed six ways to Sunday. Note to IBM UC'd - can you gives a little more detail on which areas of IBM that are going to get ousted in 2009? -anon-
    • Comment 11/24/08: We Just need to STOP outsourcing of IBM Jobs to China, Brazil and India. IBM CEO's and Management does not take care, they just backstab us when we worked for them for 30 to 40 years and one fine day they throw us out. Alliance Team and to all others here Please fill up the form under this url explaining outsource and offshore problem hope Mr. Obama will do something to save our Jobs. http://change.gov/page/s/ofthepeople. PLEASE, WE NEED TO STOP OUTSOURCING AND SAVE OUR JOBS and SAVE OUR FAMILY. -Anonymous-
    • Comment 11/26/08: The United States does not have the second highest corporate tax rate in the world. The U.S. does have the second highest *statutory* rate. However, I found comparative data for the years 2000 to 2005 here: http://www.cbpp.org/10-27-08tax.htm. In the 19 OECD countries the average *effective* corporate tax rate -- what companies actually paid as a percentage of their profits -- was 16.1 percent. In the U.S. it was 13.4 percent. (I agree with the recommendations in that article, by the way, about removing loopholes, broadening the corporate tax base, and lowering the statutory rate.) So I think some people here are focused on the wrong area. Although the corporate tax code needs to be broadened and streamlined, the burden is extremely competitive already. But one big government policy change that would greatly help businesses (and create more jobs) is universal healthcare. Healthcare is an immense and growing burden, particularly on small businesses. If the U.S. had universal healthcare like every other developed country, our businesses could be more competitive. I should point out that the union movement is extremely supportive of universal healthcare. -Anonymous & Concerned-
  • General Visitor's Comment page
    • Comment 11/18/08: This is a poor excuse of a company. I spent 9 years being lied to after my own company was outsourced. Never did I get a fair review or any of the variable pay promised by the IBM HR liars. All I ever got was over worked, woken up by pagers all hours of the night and worked many holidays of which that time lost with my family can never be replaced. I really hope this company sinks with it's greed and offshoring. What goes around......... -ex_ibmr-
    • Comment 11/21/08: From the State of Georgia article: "The agreement addresses career opportunities for state employees who currently perform data center services, with close to 300 state employees being offered positions at IBM, Dell or Xerox." Let's hope these people end up at Dell or Xerox. If they end up at IBM, they will have a job for about 6 months (or as long as transition is scheduled for) and then they will be RA'd. I bet they have no clue what's in store for them. Hmmm.... one other thing... does the State of Georgia know how much support is going to come from non-English speaking countries? I think they're going to be in for a rude awakening. -Mistressofthei5-
    • Comment 11/22/08: With the State of Georgia contract, I wonder if the details include IBM support in India. Does the State of Georgia contract include that all the support must be in the USA? -Beat Up-
    • Comment 11/25/08: Mistressofthei5, Your comments on the new hires being retained for 6 moths is spot on. Every contract I was on did that to the employees we retained. The poor employees didn't have any idea that they were getting screwed either. There has been some exceptions to the rule, but standard practice was to screw them. -exibmer-
    • Comment 11/25/08: -EFK'ed- The salary adjustment is not a fact. Read the fine print on the sheet your manager gave you. "Not a promise of..." There is already a rumor that IBM will not be giving the increases due to the economic down turn. East Fishkill management already knows how the employees will react. Piss and moan and then get right back to work. Burlington employees will react the same. As a force we are gutless and spineless. BOHICA -Not in writing-
    • Comment 11/25/08: I keep getting should I say harassed by my manager to fill out a skills profile and put my resume on the IBM database. Supposedly this is good for my career in IBM. I don't buy it. I refuse to fill it out. Here are my reasons:

      I have been a band 8 for about 12 years now. I get consistent PBC "2+" appraisals. I feel I have great and wide technical skills in I/T (I'm probably lacking in the butt kissing, brown-nosing, office politics, and "play the game" skills though! LOL) but I never can get close to my band midpoint in pay or even a chance at a promotion even though IBM says that "skills pay".

      I'm not falling for the IBM method of "pimping" their employees. If my manager and IBM still does not know the skills I possess they never will! I will only fill out a skills profile or send a resume to a prospective employer: all on my own without IBM taking any credit for it. I know what they do with these skills profiles and resumes: when IBM is trying to woo and sign a deal with a prospective customer they show them all the high prized skills like I have to the prospective customer to "sell them" on IBM services.

      But you know what? If the customer falls for this and signs they don't necessarily get folks with the skills advertised to them. For instance, they might show my skills and resume and then give the new customer a band 6 with less skills. That way the IBM Project exec or DPE can maximize their bonus by deploying cheaper resource rates hoping the work gets done instead of a band 8 like myself that would more than get the job done. IBM might even bill the customer for a band 8 while using a band 6 resource. Improper selling of resources IBM! In this scenario IBM is the pimp or john and I ain't no piece of meat to be owned and sold by IBM! -not_an_IBM_prostitute-

    • Comment 11/25/08: I contract at IBM and work for Artech. I was recently notified that I will be forced to take a 14% pay cut, because IBM has renegotiated the Purchase Orders with each of its subcontractors. I've heard from CDI employees and they are equally affected by the IBM imposed cuts. -Anonymous-
    • Comment 11/25/08: I am a former IBMer of 10 years, now on contract. Just got an email stating that my pay will be cut 14%. Oh Joy. I was chatting with my Dad, he retired from IBM at 50ish in 1990 and gets a big check from them each month. He remembers the good ol' days! -PW-
    • Comment 11/26/08: To "not_an_IBM_prostitute" - I'm on the same sinking ship you are - band 8 forever it seems, constant 2+ or better performer and career going nowhere. No opportunity for promotion and advancement exists. I'm just doing my best to build key skills and play a business critical role until a future wave of offshoring takes me out of the business. My organization insisted that the skills inventory be completed even though they know it's a farce and the information is so general it is useless. Nowhere do they actually give you a reason for completing it. My thinking is they're going to do a superficial analysis to match US workers inventoried skills with foreign counterparts with similar skills as the inventory records, offshore the work and dump the US employees. I can't confirm that, but there is no way I can possibly think as evilly as the arrogant and clueless Ms. Collins-Smee. -Joe@endicottalliance.org-
  • Pension Comments page
  • Raise and Salary Comments
    • Comment 11/23/08: Salary = Rs. 8,00,000; Band Level = 6D; Job Title = Consultant; Years Service = 2.5; Hours/Week = 45; Div Name = SAP; Location = India Message = Any good ??? -curious-
  • PBC Comments
  • International Comments
Vault Message Board Posts
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Vault's IBM Business Consulting Services message board is a popular hangout for IBM BCS employees, including many employees acquired from PwC. Some sample posts follow:

  • "Excited and Scared" by "ribbonmatch". Full excerpt: I'm in Strategic Outsourcing in Japan and decided to take a payout package of over a year's salary that was offered by IBM. I've been on a transition project and will start a new job as a systems admin for a small outsourcing company. But I'm anxious and worried. Sometimes (like now), I feel like I can't succeed outside of IBM. It's strange that I've been dissatisfied at IBM for about a year yet I feel afraid to leave. I should be happy about leaving, yet I feel depressed.

    I've been trying to understand why I'm feeling this way. Maybe it's leaving a big company with its security (such as it is) for a small company? Maybe it's been that I've been weekdays away from home for this project since July. Or maybe it's the feeling that I'm running away from IBM and this transition project and not sticking it out like my colleagues in the project. Well, it's really all of the above and it's really giving me a hard time thinking about it. I wonder if there's anyone else out there who's been in my position and has come through all right after leaving IBM.

  • "You're not alone" by "Frank Cary". Full excerpt: Ribbon- As wise old ABC said on this subject last year, we are all "Battered Employees" when leaving the Blue Pig. Like most abusers, the Pig tries to make you feel bad at leaving your own abuse. Your feelings are all in a jumble now and you're not thinking/feeling as clearly as you will 6-12 months from now.

    You haven't failed or abandoned your buddies: you've made a life-enhancing decision in your own best interests. I found solace in Is 55:12 every time I felt as you've described above in your note. "You shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace..." Nothing better than that in this life. as we say in Texas, "Buena suerta."

  • "Thanks Frank..." by "ribbonmatch". Full excerpt: ...for your wise words. It's difficult to separate all these thoughts and feelings at this point in time...sad to leave colleagues and familiar surroundings. I get close to tears knowing that I'll be gone in a little while; it's like a kind of death (I know it's not like that, but it's the way I feel now). But I don't really see any other way than to take the package and leave.

    I came to IBM from a smaller company that got bought out by IBM a few years ago. Despite some bright spots, I have to say that I've had a sense of malaise and depression here. I can tell from talking to the employees in their 40s and 50s who talk about the good old days of IBM that something's amiss in today's IBM, or at least IBM and I aren't suited for each other.

    I've always admired the insight that you, civilliberty, ABC, and Dose of Reality (and unnamed others) bring to this message board. Thanks a lot guys for your advice and humor.

  • "Hang in there" by "messy desk". Full excerpt: You are definitely not alone! I ditto everything said in the other post, there are tons of people that feel the same way working for IBM. I have been very unhappy for years, but the thought of the unknown of going somewhere else frightens me. This year has been a challenge, of huge size. I have faced horrible personal challenges, but at work we have fallen under the worse leadership I have ever experienced which has led us to the worse working environment I could imagine. Our group was re-orged this year, and never did I think it could be this bad! Thought it was bad in years past, but those were a breeze compared to what it is like now.

    Through all the troubles I've experienced this year, I have finally found something that allows me to be able to deal with it (after I have experienced NUMEROUS serious health problems all year that have threatened my life). I have been reading the book "The Purpose Driven Life." This has greatly helped me to re-confirm what life should be about, what it is about, and who it is about. TRUST me when I say this really helps put things into perspective, even things beyond IBM (believe it there are things beyond IBM), and has lessened my stress and anxiety. I can now trust that what should be will be, and that I can be happy outside of my current job.

    Hopefully this helps, I think we all need help from this crumbling leadership. IBM definitely is not like it was in the good old days! Great luck to you, and everyone else!!!

  • "Thanks and You Hang in There Too" by "ribbonmatch". Full excerpt: Thanks a lot messy desk for your supportive message. I've read a little of "The Purpose Driven Life" and it's got some solid advice about putting things in perspective. IBM became the subject of my thoughts most of the time (even though I tried to resist it) and it was just tiring me out. I got the feeling that I didn't fit in with the company's plans and got depressed thinking about that. So I think I really had to make a move, however apprehensive I still am about it. I hope things work out for you, especially on the health front.
  • "ABC's Post about Leaving IBM" by "ribbonmatch". Full excerpt: I wanted to repost something that ABC wrote that has provided inspiration for me as I leave IBM (thanks for the cite, Frank Cary, in a previous thread). ///Aug 1, 2006 7:58 AM EST

    You have forded the river of opportunity and the reached new shores of equality, freedom of though and freedom of being valued like a human being, not a disposable tool. You have triumphed where many are too scared or too beaten down psychologically, paralyzed to take that one chance to succeed. You are now among an elite. The survivors of one of the most organizationally psychotic companies in the world.

    One word of warning, however. You have now probably arrived into an organizationally optimistic organization. Like battered male or female spouses who have left their diseased relationships and suddenly freed slaves, you need to stop and take stock of your new freedom and positive mental environment. Many ex-IBMers fail to change because they can't re-learn the new, more positive and individually rewarding situation that most in the world work in. Like Pavlovian dogs, they can't take the pain, insults and punishment out of their minds.

    Take time to decompress and heal mentally. Don't leap at the first opportunity. Don't act like a political mad dog like you were bred to be in IBM, and don't bite the gentle hands that feed you.

    You are out of the new 21st century forced slave labor nightmare called IBM. Don't take that nightmare as a chip on your shoulder for the rest of your working life. Take the time to heal yourself and move forward.

    Leaving IBM is like withdrawal from a nasty addictive drug that saps your individuality. Move forward slowly and you'll find your past nightmares to be a most invaluable lesson of how things should never be from a corporate, ethical and moral perspective.

    The brass ring is now in your hand. It's now your turn to offer it to help other colleagues out of the corporate nightmare called IBM and to move ahead to achieve whatever you define is success! ///

  • "But just be careful about the dramatics" by "wonderaboutibm". Full excerpt: Ribbommatch -- I am not trying to be catty here. I will not argue that IBM is a top-tier employer. It is not, and it has no chance of becoming one again without major and wrenching change. But your predicament is more common than you might think and probably common to almost every possible employer you could imagine.

    I take it that you are fairly young and early in your career. That you feel as you describe is actually to your credit. You appear to have a loyalty to your transition group that speaks volumes about your work ethic and your work attitudes. IBM may be a huge company but a lot of your job satisfaction comes from your own work group -- which will be whatever size is needed regardless of the size of the larger organization.

    But this loyalty and positive association cannot and should not translate into loyalty to the larger IBM, UNLESS that loyalty is deserved. IBM does not deserve this consideration from you -- certainly they don't extend it to you. Until IBM figures out a way to relate to employees better -- and I mean this in for its worldwide work force -- working for IBM is no better and no worse than what your particular work situation is now. (This is also true currently for most other employers, large and small.) Since things do change, that's not really much to count on, so godspeed you on your way.

  • "I Appreciate Your Take Wonderaboutibm" by "ribbonmatch". Full excerpt: wonderaboutibm, I appreciate your note and I hope I can understand what you wrote.

    I tried to separate out the project from the larger IBM, compare and contrast the pros and cons of each, and tried to arrive at a rational decision as to whether to resign or to stay on. I really did try to adapt to the larger IBM organization's work style, but with the siloed structure and what seemed to me a lack of interesting global projects, I felt I was in a straightjacket being in my particular competency. I'm not that young (between 30-40), but this was really my first experience working in a global outsourcing company like IBM and I really missed the esprit de corps and international feel of the smaller company that I worked in before joining IBM.

    I'd say my decision was because of the above, plus being away from home often, plus the separation package, plus the opportunities at the new employer. I thought and thought in order to satisfy myself that my decision wasn't a frivolous one based on emotion.

    I take your point that my predicament is a common one and something I'll likely see at other employers. Maybe I could have tried harder at IBM, or talk to more people to try and improve my situation. I'm not sure what more I could have done. Even now, I am second-guessing my decision and feeling a knot in my stomach.

    By the way, could you tell me what you meant when you wrote "Since things do change,that's not really much to count on"?

  • "Yes I wasn't necessarily too clear" by "wonderaboutibm". Full excerpt: All I meant was that even if you like your current project and the people on it, that project will sooner or later end, and then you will be at the tender mercies of IBM as the larger organization. That you might even enjoy current assignment is no reason for staying per se.

    My larger point was as that you shouldn't think about this too much and get yourself upset ... some of the answers you got were a bit too emotional and rather too literate (especially the ABC quote ... even though he is a phenomenal writer) ... just move forward and head back to where I suspect you will be "happier."

  • "Part 1" by "IGS_Consultant". Full excerpt: 1. Effective immediately, all non-customer related travel is prohibited unless approved by Unit/IOT designated contact. Additionally, when travel is required, we are amending the IBM Travel Policy as follows: * Tickets which are already purchased at a higher class of travel should be rebooked in coach (provided the change nets a lower fare), assuming the trip is still deemed necessary * Exceptions: Travel is billable to a customer (and approved by Project Partner/Manager). Other exceptions are expected to be extremely limited and must be approved by IOT GM or Sr VP. Exceptions will be tracked.
  • "Part 2" by "IGS_Consultant". Full excerpt: 2. Employees are required to purchase non-refundable coach tickets for any necessary air travel unless a fully refundable ticket is available within $100 of the non-refundable fare. 3. Air Ticket purchases must be made at least 7 days in advance, but preferably 21 days. Unavoidable short-notice Customer related travel is exempt from this advance notice requirement. 4. Hotel stays must be at IBM approved hotel properties as listed in the IBM Hotel guide at the IBM Travel website. Reservations must be booked via the On-Line Travel tool or through American Express. * Exceptions: Customer directed hotel. Other exceptions are expected to be extremely limited and must be approved by IOT GM or Sr VP. Exceptions will be tracked. 5. Ground transportation - Reduce Limo/Car Services and use the lowest logical ground transportation. Rental cars are available for pick up/drop off at numerous IBM sites. Please refer to the IBM Travel website for details.
  • "Travel" by "the arab". Full excerpt: They seem to think that you guys travel to clock up frequent flyer miles. It is so sad that you actually work to meet client demands! Yes, I am ex IBM ME and it was the best thing I ever did to leave, because of penny pinching like this. Astoundingly, a large number of the consultants have left ME, so we were not alone. IBM should continue to reduce its "benefits" and see how many staff they have left to serve their client base. I guess the consulting force in India will be happy to travel on buses to appointments!
If you hire good people and treat them well, they will try to do a good job. They will stimulate one another by their vigor and example. They will set a fast pace for themselves. Then if they are well led and occasionally inspired, if they understand what the company is trying to do and know they will share in its sucess, they will contribute in a major way. The customer will get the superior service he is looking for. The result is profit to customers, employees, and to stcckholders. —Thomas J. Watson, Jr., from A Business and Its Beliefs: The Ideas That Helped Build IBM.

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