Organizations To Consider Helping In The New Year

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Many charitable organizations make year-end appeals to increase donation activity around the holiday season. As the new year arrives, the volume of donations typically decreases. However, there are many charitable organizations that perform multitudes of good work throughout the year. If your New Year’s resolution was to be more actively involved in giving, here are some organizations in the Coachella Valley area that are worthy of your time and donations.

Loving All Animals
Fundraising for animal causes can be a challenge, especially during slow economic seasons. Monetary donations are always welcome, as are pet food, chew toys, leashes, laundry detergent, and other necessities. Volunteers are needed for kennel support, sanitation, and behavioral assessments. These loving animals would love to take you for a walk and share your company!

Desert Blind & Handicapped Association
This unique organization supports citizens with disabilities by providing transportation services. This role requires lifting up to 25 pounds, and some experience with medical equipment and wheelchairs are helpful. Drivers are needed to help transport blind and handicapped residents with their daily routines, such as grocery shopping, medical visits, and more. Volunteers must possess a valid driver’s license and a clean driving record for at least three years.

Friends of the College of the Desert Library
Reading is an important part of adolescent development and a favorite hobby for many adults. Volunteers are needed to support the Friends of the College of the Desert Library at community events and book sales. The organization also accepts monetary gifts and new or gently used books. Donations are accepted in person and online.

Mizell Senior Center
Senior services are available through many agencies in the Palm Springs area. The Mizell Senior Center extends services to local retirees, snowbirds, and just about anyone in between. Volunteers are needed to manage the farmers market, gift and retail shops, and for personal services such as meal preparation for seniors.

American Red Cross
This national organization has been an ever-present help in the face of a natural disaster. The Red Cross provides victim support services such as housing assistance, blankets, personal hygiene needs, and referral services. They accept donations in many forms and have made online giving very easy. Volunteers are needed to help communities prepare for earthquakes, fires, and other emergencies.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

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Leadership Tips To Remember In The New Year

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Leaders should always be on the lookout for new leadership styles to assist in their receptivity and effectiveness for their business. Leaders aren’t excluded from improvement and often set the status quo for exemplary superintendence. Implementing outstanding leadership qualities can impact a team by establishing an efficient work environment, arouse feelings of apathy, boost employee morale, increase worker job satisfaction, and improve worker performance. Leaders can take their business and team to a new level this New Year by following some of these tips:

“Leaders must wake people out of inertia. They must get people excited about something they’ve never seen before, something that does not yet exist.” – Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Conduct a SWOT Analysis
SWOT analysis stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. It’s a sort of assessment used to find areas in need of improvement whilst also accrediting one’s assets to a business as well. In a personal SWOT analysis, a leader asks these questions to trusted colleagues:

  • What are my top weaknesses?
  • Where can I grow?
  • What are the internal or external threats blocking my success?

Through conducting this assessment, leaders can find out what their company may be lacking, tangible assets, competitors, emerging competitors, etc.

Be a Facilitator
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

A leader is an overseer, not to be confused with an overzealous boss. As a facilitator, leaders teach their team to adapt their own sense of leadership. Leaders give their team members the necessary tools or restrictions to do their best at the job. Once employees feel supported, they will reach a plateau of self-actualization.

Break Down Barriers
Barriers such as hierarchy, time, management styles, technology, communication, and culture should be diminished. Leaders should be especially open-minded, taking in new considerations for this coming new year. One may be surprised how much progress can be achieved by considering other differing viewpoints. Perhaps team members see potential liabilities or possible assets within a given project.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

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What It Means To Be An Intrapreneur

What It Means To Be an Intrapreneur

If you’ve ever dreamed of becoming an entrepreneur, but also wanted to take part in company culture and not jump into the market on your own, intrapreneurship may be the answer for you.

An intrapreneur works within a company. They often take on a specific project or concept within the business. Their job is to develop innovative ideas. They are given more freedom and time to bring these ideas to life than a typical employee, similar to the way an entrepreneur would with their own company.

Let’s take a closer look at the realities of what an intrapreneur is and how they differ from an entrepreneur.

How To Spot An Intrapreneur
When compared to a regular employee, what can you expect to see an intrapreneur doing? These are the star employees. They see obstacles on the job and find innovative ways to overcome them. They care about the company as if it were their own and are looking for ways to find it succeed. The way they examine and investigate problems in the business takes their role further than what they’ve been asked to do.

These people are good at working with others within the company and have leadership skills. They genuinely want everyone around them, and the business itself, to succeed. When they fail, they don’t give up. They bounce back with new ideas and are always looking to do more.

How They Differ From Entrepreneurs
A lot of the characteristics listed above are similar to the traits you’d see in an entrepreneur, but their jobs actually differ quite a bit.

An intrapreneur is there to take an existing company structure, work within it, and improve. This differs from an entrepreneur who builds something from scratch and is developing its own company.

An intrapreneur is using a company’s resources to accomplish everything they do within their job. An entrepreneur is using their own resources. This also shines line on the ways an intrapreneur depends on the company they work for, while an entrepreneur is on their own.

When an entrepreneur is building their business, they are tackling the market. Their job is to find ways to make their company succeed within the market. An intrapreneur is going to innovate within an existing company, and so their obstacle is often finding ways to work within the company. They have to be excellent at clearly communicating and negotiating with others within the company to lead others with their new ideas. This can be particularly challenging if others are resistant to the changes.

An intrapreneur has the innovative nature of an entrepreneur, with less of the risks of stepping out on their own and more social responsibility within the company’s culture.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

Non-Profit Organizations On The Rise

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In the past decade or so, disruption has been one of the key terms everyone hears in technology and other industries. What many people may not realize is that young entrepreneurs have been revolutionizing the world of philanthropy, too. They’re doing this with many of the same tools that spell success in the for-profit world.

GiveDirectly is just one example of how technology has made it possible to make big changes in the world of philanthropy. Founded by Michael Faye, the CEO of Segovia Technology, this charity gives money directly to families in need in Africa. GiveDirectly allows donors to send money to people in need directly from their cell phones. What’s more, GiveDirectly gets great reviews from organizations like GiveWell and news outlets like The Guardian. Faye’s understanding of economics and development is comprehensive. He earned a Ph.D. in the subject at Harvard and has also studied Math and Classics. In addition to running GiveDirectly, Faye serves on the Council of Foreign Relations. His vision for the world will be making waves for years to come.

Or take Yuva Unstoppable, a non-profit working in the developing world. Founder Amitabh Shah had just finished his MBA at an Ivy League school when he founded this non-profit. It was inspired by the abuse faced by his former nanny. Shah had the chance to work for JPMorgan, but gave that up to go to India and find a way to make a difference for some of the world’s poorest people. His fledgling organization offered volunteer services to the elderly, slum-dwellers, and children. That was 14 years ago. Yuva Unstoppable has a presence in dozens of Indian cities today and serves millions of children.

SeekHelp, founded by Dr. Rachel Wurzman and Jennifer Nicolaisen, helps address gaps in the addiction treatment market. This organization is based in Western North Carolina, an area that has been hit hard by the opioid epidemic. After a friend of Nicolaisen’s emerged from detox with no good options for follow-up care, she worked hard to create one. By partnering with Dr. Wurzman, she was able to develop a program that helped keep addicts from lapsing back into isolation and disorder thinking. In just over a year, over 100 people joined their program.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

What Are Some Of The Biggest Social Concerns For The Millennial Generation?

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It has been no secret in recent years that millennials have become a compelling voice in the political system of the United States. But as a new generation of voters struggles to reshape society in its image, it is worth taking a moment to consider the issues that are driving a new era of social activism and idealism.

Here are just a few of the biggest concerns of US citizens under the age of 40, and why more and more young people in the United States are making engagement with the political process a top priority.

Environmental Damage
As the effects of global warming become more and more apparent with each passing year, a significant number of millennials are struggling to come to terms with the impact of pollution on the environment. And at a time when state and federal agencies are spending billions of dollars to combat devastating wildfires in urban areas, despondency about lax environmental policies is becoming a major concern for a younger generation of voters within the US.

Stagnating Wages and Rising Living Costs
For many millennials living in the United States, the notion of achieving the kind of middle-class lifestyle once enjoyed by previous generations has come to feel like a very distant prospect. As they have grown into adulthood, millennials have watched as housing prices in major urban centers have skyrocketed; over this same period of time, however, wages earned by American workers have remained almost completely static. Among millennials, this jarring contrast between living costs and income standards has produced a generational sense of anxiety around issues related to retirement and homeownership.

Institutional Corruption
For a generation that grew up in the shadows of a failed military intervention in Iraq and the worst economic downturn in the United States since the Great Depression, faith in society’s most powerful institutions are quickly approaching a breaking point. And as more and more millennials struggle to come to terms with a perceived lack of accountability on the part of the country’s leadership class, young voters are becoming increasingly receptive to the socialism-tinged political messages of candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. With the 2020 election season quickly approaching, that could spell very big changes ahead for the American political system indeed.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

Where Do the Impeachment Hearings Go From Here?

Where Do the Impeachment Hearings Go From Here_

After receiving landmark testimony concerning President Trump’s actions with regard to US foreign policy on Ukraine from credible witnesses like Dr. Fiona Hill, William Taylor, and David Holmes, Congress finally appears set to move impeachment hearings forward to a new stage of development in December.

Over the next month, the House Judiciary Committee will hear testimony from legal experts that may shed more light on the foreign policy maneuverings of President Trump and his inner circle. At a time when political divisions are rife within the American electorate, these hearings could take on an aura of historical significance, but the likely political outcome of further witness testimony is anyone’s guess at this stage in the proceedings.

Clearly, Democrats in Congress are doing much to make their case to the American public that President Trump, his attorney Rudy Giuliani, and Energy Secretary Rick Perry intended to pressure Ukraine to announce an investigation into Trump’s main political rival Joe Biden. In exchange for dirt on Trump’s primary political opponent, Democrats argue, Ukraine would receive much-needed military funding for its fierce war against the Russian military. This scenario is the so-called “quid pro quo” that the Democrats’ case for impeachment hinges upon.

That case might be a very hard sell to a significant number of American voters who already back President Trump to the hilt, and it may be nothing short of a miracle if Democratic Party stalwarts like Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi convince Trump supporters like Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham to vote for impeachment in the Senate.

So far, the strategy in the House appears to be straightforward enough: Present compelling evidence for impeachment via a litany of testimony from credible witnesses, the thinking goes, and Trump supporters within the Senate will be all but forced to prosecute Trump over the coming year. But as an era of fierce political rivalries and hard-nosed political tactics swathes Washington in impenetrable clouds of political oneupmanship, that may be a very tall order indeed.

This is large because no President in recent memory has been able to shore up absolute support in party circles quite like Donald Trump. His adherents in Congress have not budged an inch since impeachment hearings were first announced, and Congressmen like Representatives Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes have been fierce in their defense of Trump’s actions.

Even when the facts have not been on their side, in fact, politicians like Jordan and Nunes have doubled down on conspiracy theories and mudslinging attacks on colleagues: Convinced that Ukraine was a shadow-force behind the Hillary Clinton email server scandal that first made front-page headlines in the run-up to the 2016 election, for example, Republicans appear to view the President’s actions vis-à-vis foreign policy as little more than stalled efforts to stymie corruption in Eastern Europe.

However, such theories took a battering in recent weeks as foreign service agents like Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman painted a very unflattering portrait of Trump’s possible intentions with regard to Ukraine. A decorated war hero, Vindman was able to remain calm and collected as Republican members of Congress repeatedly attempted to besmear his character and patriotism. Vindman’s testimony was clear: Trump intended to extort Ukraine for his own political gain. At least for a time, Republicans had lost control of the narrative.

If Democrats can produce more witnesses like Vindman, they may just make their case for impeachment on a very grand scale indeed. No matter how compelling the evidence, however, convincing Trump’s most diehard supporters in Congress and in the American public at large of the need for impeachment may just be a bridge too far.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business JournalForbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

Volunteer Opportunities For Companies During The Holidays

Volunteer Opportunities for Companies During the Holidays

The hustle and bustle of the holidays often push volunteer opportunities far back on a business owner’s to-do list. Volunteering as a work team, however, can help bring cohesiveness as employees give back to the community. These volunteer opportunities are perfect for companies to implement during the holiday season.

Host a Toy Drive
Toys for Tots is a national nonprofit organization that collects brand-new toys each holiday season and distributes them to underprivileged children. The organization has corporate opportunities for hosting toy drives. On a smaller scale, simply place a large container in the workplace and drop off donated toys at collection sites.

Serve Food at a Soup Kitchen
Smaller groups of 10 to 15 employees can sign up for time slots to volunteer at local soup kitchens. Employees can help prepare, serve, and clean up after the meals that feed the homeless and the underprivileged. Check out foodpantries.org for local volunteer locations.

Gather Canned Food Items
Most food shelters and pantries accept donations of non-perishable food items throughout the year. These items are then distributed to those in need. Make gathering food items fun by making it a competition between teams in the workplace.

Write Letters
Many people feel as though they are alone when going through difficult periods of time. Cheer up someone’s day with a letter. More Love Letters is a letter-writing organization that sends anonymous kind notes and love letters to people going through a hard time. Put out paper, envelopes, and fun writing utensils in the workplace and encourage employees to write a note. Gather the responses and send them to More Love Letters for distribution.

Build Homes for Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity builds homes for individuals in need. Select a day and ask employees to volunteer for different time slots. Volunteers will be instructed on how they can help build the home. Companies that can spare a day may consider giving everyone the day off in order to help build the home together.

Adopt a Family
Make a family’s holiday wishes come true this season by adopting them. Local Salvation Army Angel Trees and Boys and Girls clubs often have opportunities for families or organizations to adopt a family and provide them the items on their wish list.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business Journal, Forbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

The Significance Of The College Bribery Scandal

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As “the land of opportunity,” success in America was once possible for anyone. Recently, however, this equal opportunity for every student became highjacked by the machinations of select elite, wealthy families. The now infamous college bribery scandal has exposed the corruption of a higher-education process in the United States that sometimes accepts the progeny of the wealthy and politically powerful, bypassing regulations. Acceptance into prestigious colleges and universities has now become a status symbol for some families and an advantageous place for their sons or daughters to meet a marriage partner and reinforce the social walls that keep others out.

Underscoring the prohibitive conditions of elite colleges and universities are the results discovered at Stanford in 2011. A professor at this university, along with a colleague, taught a class on Artificial Intelligence. Curious about the consequences of offering the material of their course online, the professors permitted anyone who was interested in enrolling in the online course for free on Stanford’s website. One hundred sixty thousand people signed up for the course, and to the professors’ further surprise, those who scored the highest on the final exam were not from Stanford. In fact, the highest score of a Stanford student was ranked 413th.

Not only has the college bribery scandal brought to light the corruptive power of the wealthy class in America, but it also points to the barriers created by certain colleges. As demonstrated by the Stanford professor’s course offer, many bright and talented young people, who either lack the finances or who are employed, are not afforded the privileges of access to courses that fit their talents and schedules. Statistics also show that a growing number of people change jobs every few years because they are not receiving the training they need to land a satisfying career.

The College Bribery Scandal exposes the truth that not everyone at prestigious colleges possesses the potential needed to sustain the country’s progress while others who are talented and have potential are unable to attend colleges. A recent study by Korn Ferry research predicts that a labor-skills shortage in telecommunication, media, and global technology will rise to 4.3 million positions. There will also be an unrealized output of almost $450 billion. In 2019, the Conference Board ranked attracting and retaining top talent as their number one internal concern. But, no nation can develop and retain talent if it does not afford young people access to knowledge and skills.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business Journal, Forbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

Ways To Keep Your Online Financial Information Safe

Ways To Keep Your Online Financial Information Safe

Most of us now use digital means to take care of our finances, and yet, this is such a new way for us to handle our money that we don’t have common practices for keeping our financial information safe.

If you were traveling, your friends and family would remind you to keep your cash out of sight. They would advise you to put your money in multiple places and never have too much on hand. These are common pieces of advice.

There is a lot less common advice for keeping your digital financial information safe, and the advice that is out there can sometimes be confusing.

So let’s look at the things you can do to keep your banking information safe truly.

Keep Your Online Browsing Private
There is free wifi everywhere, so why not take advantage of it, right? It’s common for all of us to use free wifi and to even check up on our banking information when we’re doing other things, like out at a cafe using the free wifi. There are plenty of ways for hackers to see what you’re doing and get your financial information on open wifi networks. If you must use free wifi, look into using a safe and reputable VPN (a virtual private network) to keep your browsing safe.

Don’t Write Your Login Information Down
Too many people make this mistake. Sometimes they keep this information in their wallet, which is very dangerous, and other times it’s kept at home, so they think it’s safe. This is a very risky plan. If you must write own your login information, and you can’t keep it in a locked safe, then at least write it down using a mnemonic device or other code, so it’s less obvious.

Check Site Security
If you are going to enter your financial information on a website, check that the site is secure! This is easy to do. On your browser, check that the URL has https:// (as opposed to http://). You will notice the added S when you’re shopping on major retail sites. You can click on the green padlock symbol to see their SSL certificate and make sure this is truly the site you’re on.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business Journal, Forbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.

How To Determine Smart Financial Investments

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When it comes to investing, there are many different options that can build wealth. There are some investments that will not pay off in the long run. Terms like Ponzi schemes and Bernie Madoff come to mind when looking at poor investments that make money only for those who push them on investors. A good investment is one that’s likely to grow over the long haul.

High-Yield Savings Accounts
High-yield savings accounts are likely to grow in value over time. Many of the banks that offer these accounts are insured by the FDIC. Therefore, any money held in them is safe. However, there is a major risk with only using high-yield savings account for investment. The returns are likely to trail the rate of inflation. This means that the real value of the money can lose value over time.

Bonds
Many people consider US government bonds as one of the most secure investments around. They are backed by the full faith and credit of the US government. As long as the government exists, the bonds should be safe. There are also corporate and municipal bonds, and many times, these will pay out a higher interest rate than government bonds.

Stocks
Over the long haul, few investments have returned as much as stocks on an average basis. Sure, there are down years in which stocks can lose money, but over the long haul, the S&P 500 has returned around 10% on an annualized basis. The dividends that stocks payout can add to the share count an investor might hold. Over time, these dividends and additional purchases can lead to even higher payouts through the process of compounding.

Those who are scared of investing in individual stocks can purchase mutual funds or ETFs that allow for diversification with little thought. Index funds that track the S&P 500 are a popular form of investments, and they will frequently perform better than funds managed actively by professionals.

Setting up an account at a brokerage is the first step to investing. A good brokerage will allow for access to money market funds for those who are averse to risk. It will also allow investors to invest in a range of stocks, bonds, and funds. When looking at stocks, it’s a good idea to pick companies that have strong histories of building revenue and income over time. Through regular investments, it’s possible for nearly anyone to build wealth over time.

About The Author
Yuri Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Business & Finance Expert, Political Coalition Builder, and Philanthropist. He brings over 25 years of professional experience across a wide range of industries, and has become known as a leader for his entrepreneurial spirit. Yuri Vanetik has been featured in notable publications, including the Wall Street Journal, California Business Journal, Forbes, and Bloomberg Law.

Follow Yuri Vanetik On Twitter.