FINANCE

Tips To Recruit Top Talent

Boost Your Money IQ Combat Terrorism With Opportunity Find The Right Job New Poll: More School Choice Register For Federal Job "Free Lunch" Investment Seminars Shift In Classroom Learning

5 Tips To Recruit Top Talent

(NAPSI)—Here's a smart way for entrepreneurs to be successful—and save time and money: Learn from the mistakes of others.

That's the word from Burton Goldfield, president and CEO of TriNet, which manages HR to help entrepreneurs focus on their business. He asked entrepreneurs: "If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?" Here are the top five mistakes and tips to fix them.

1. Failure to hire the best talent or the right fit. It's better to have a good team that excels together than one superstar who makes everyone suffer.

2. Expecting employees to act like owners rather than leaders. Nurture employees and pay them for the value of their leadership.

3. Promoting based on seniority. Rather than promoting people beyond their capabilities, offer a parallel track for advancement.

4. Failure to train employees. Make sure the skills they're honing or advancing are in line with the company's goals and needs.

5. Not to manage performance. People need to know where they stand. What can be measured will get done.

Learn More

For more expert tips about hiring and managing employees, visit www.trinet.com/solutions.

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Why—And How—To Boost Your Money IQ

(NAPSI)--Many people might get and keep their hands on more money if they had a better grasp of finances. Consider these statistics from Indiana State University:

• Only 25 percent of Americans feel well informed about managing household finances.

• Less than 50 percent of parents think they're good role models regarding spending and saving.

• Less than 60 percent of millennials pay their bills on time.

• Young adults between 20 and 24 represent the fastest-growing segment of bankruptcy filings.

Fortunately, the needs of an undereducated America regarding personal finance can now be met in an entertaining way. Author ("Doing the Impossible," "The Next Perfect Storm") and entrepreneur Patrick Bet-David created a noncommercial website, GoAskNewton.com, that makes learning about the concepts and terms of personal finance easy and interactive through fun quizzes, weekly lessons and social media integration, all led by Newton, financial literacy's best friend and the world's smartest (cartoon) dog. For example, it can show you 10 steps toward better budgeting:

How To Budget

1. Identify why you want to start a budget. Write down your reasons and keep them where you'll be reminded of them.

2. Determine your income and expenses. Once you know what money comes in and where it goes, you can see where to cut back.

3. Pay yourself first. Have an expense area called "personal savings." Try to save at least 10 percent of what comes in monthly.

4. Set goals you can hit, weekly, monthly or quarterly.

5. It's okay to spend on yourself, as long as it doesn't ruin your overall progress.

6. Don't expect to get it perfect the first time. Give your budget a month, then see where to improve.

7. Adjust as necessary.

8. Consider hiring professional help.

9. Be flexible. Don't panic if your finances fluctuate here and there.

10. Communicate your budget and intentions to your family.

GoAskNewton.com offers a free weekly newsletter that delivers a personal finance lesson, a Financial Term of the Week, and quick quizzes to test your financial knowledge and spending habits, whether you're a teenager or ready to retire.

There's also Newton's Bark, a weekly blog on saving and budgeting, retirement planning, home mortgages, health insurance and many more personal finance tools, including a Credit Card Debt Analyzer, a Budget Worksheet and a Life Insurance Needs Estimator.

Learn More

Find further information and get your finance questions answered at http://GoAskNewton.com and follow on Twitter @GoAskNewton.

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Morocco: Combating Terrorism With Opportunity

(NAPSI)—While some think of North Africa as a region of turmoil and unrest half a world away, one nation has emerged as a leader, demonstrating a commitment to cooperation and regional security that can ultimately benefit the interests of the U.S.

Morocco , under the leadership of King Mohammed VI, recently deepened its ties in Africa and underscored the country's commitment-and the king's personal dedication-to strong relationships among countries. Such relationships, it's believed, can sow the seeds of economic and social development and help to thwart the rise of radical ideologies and terrorism.

Resources and Health Care

For example, in Senegal , King Mohammed VI and President Macky Sall presided over the signing of agreements on mining, hydrocarbons, electricity and renewable energies as well as increasing cooperation on international transport of goods and persons. Together, they also dedicated the Mohammed VI ophthalmologic clinic and a medicine production plant to improve local health care.

Investment and Training

In Côte d'Ivoire , the King and President Alassane Ouattara chaired the signing of agreements that strengthen cooperation between the foreign ministries, promote and protect investments, encourage fisheries and aquaculture, support vocational training in tourism, and improve Moroccan-Ivorian disaster management.

Safety and Technology

In Gabon, King Mohammed VI and President Ali Bongo Ondimba chaired the signing of cooperation agreements, including an agreement by Morocco to help develop the National Gabonese Institute for Training, Health, and Social Action; another to work together on civil efforts to prevent and manage risks to public safety and the environment; an agreement for technical cooperation; and another establishing a framework for strategic partnership in information technology and systems.

All three presidents praised King Mohammed VI for his leadership in promoting democracy, economic and social development, and human rights in Morocco .

"Today," said the president of Gabon , " Morocco can rightfully boast to be giving to the world the image of an innovating and modern Kingdom where the will of the people is respected."

The African leaders also reaffirmed their countries' support for Morocco 's autonomy plan for Western Sahara, which aims to resolve a three-decade-long dispute that threatens stability, much-needed economic cooperation, and security in the region and beyond.

This information is provided by Beckerman on behalf of the government of Morocco . Further information is available at the U.S. Department of Justice.

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Many Seeking A New Start Are Sold On Sales

(NAPSI)—There's good news for those seeking a new career. No matter what jobs you may have held in the past, a career in sales can offer an opportunity to "go with what you know" in a new and rewarding way.

Those in the profession say an entry sales opportunity typically requires little or no specific experience in a particular industry and can still offer good income potential.

"There is always a demand for good salespeople, especially in areas like insurance, because the market is always growing," says Peter Leighton, senior vice president of recruiting at Combined Insurance, a leading provider of individual supplemental accident, disability, health and life insurance products and part of the ACE Group of Companies. "Those who are personable, ambitious, confident, positive and disciplined often make the most successful salespeople."

However, Leighton notes, some job seekers shy away from considering sales positions because a majority of such positions pay on commission, which can be a negative to some applicants. But, he says, that shouldn't be a deterrent, as some companies help new salespeople balance the financial risk when first starting out.

Finding The Right Job

Leighton says when considering a sales job, it's important to look for companies that offer four key benefits:

• guaranteed initial income;

• comprehensive training and support;

• free leads;

• employee status.

"These particularly help new sales representatives while they build their business. But not all companies offer them, so it's important to do your homework," he says.

An Entry To Other Fields

A sales job can also be a great stepping-stone to finding work in another field. "Sales is a great job opportunity for the 20-24 age group of job seekers who may be entering the workforce for the first time," Leighton says. "The skills that are gained from a sales position, such as time management, communication, problem solving and working with others, are qualities that employers in all industries look for, and they are easily transferable."

Leighton adds that Combined Insurance is looking to hire 3,000 sales representatives and managers and is open to considering those who are unemployed, underemployed or just looking for a career change.

To learn more, visit www.combinedinsurance.com/careers.

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New Poll: Moms Prefer More School Choice

(NAPSI)—A new poll on popular though sometimes controversial schooling issues shows that moms of school-age children are frustrated with K-12 education's current course. Perhaps as a result, they want the ability to choose where and how their children are educated outside of public schools.

What Moms Want

Vouchers, charter schools and other "school choice" policies each receive majority support from mothers of school-age children in the "Schooling in America Survey," a project of the pro-reform Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, conducted by Braun Research, Inc. Vouchers were supported by 66 percent of respondents and opposed by 26 percent, while charter schools were favored by 63 percent with 25 percent opposed.

"So many moms, who want only the best for their children, are left powerless in today's education system," said Virginia Walden Ford, a mother whose child received a private school scholarship and attended a charter school. "Moms are dissatisfied with the lack of progress in education. That's why they're demanding school choice."

By nearly a two-to-one margin, the poll shows that mothers of school-age children believe K-12 education in the United States is on the "wrong track," compared with those saying it is going in the "right direction." And almost eight out of 10 school moms, or 79 percent, give a "fair" or "poor" rating to the federal government's involvement in education.

"More states are realizing that tying children's educational opportunities to their parents' home address isn't working," Ford said. "Our kids deserve better than the status quo."

What States Are Doing

On the state level, lawmakers supportive of education reform are acting to increase the number of school choice options. In 42 states and Washington, D.C., 2.3 million students are attending 6,000 charter schools, according to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. Private school choice is available in 22 states and Washington, D.C., serving 1.1 million students through vouchers and tax incentives. Recently, Alabama enacted its first-ever private school choice programs, while Mississippi increased the availability of charter schools.

Where To Learn More

You can find the full "Schooling in America Survey" online at www.edchoice.org/SchoolingSurvey or call (317) 681-0745.

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Planning Tips For High School Seniors

(NAPSI)—There's good news for seniors about to graduate from high school. Investing a little time and effort now can pay off when it comes to planning your future. Here are some tips.

• Talk with your parents, teachers and counselors about your career goals and get their advice.

• Spend time with people who work in areas of interest to you and find out what it takes to succeed.

• Put together a résumé you can use when applying for a job.

• For young men, registration with the Selective Service System is required by law within 30 days of their 18th birthday.

• This can be done by mail, at a post office or online with a computer or smartphone. Just visit www.sss.gov and click on the registration icon.

It is important to remember that registration is required in order to be eligible for Pell Grants, College Work-Study and Guaranteed Student PLUS Loans, federal job training and federal jobs.

To learn more about registration, visit www.sss.gov.

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"Free Lunch" Investment Seminars—What To Look Out For

(NAPSI)—If you're ever invited to a free seminar that promises to teach you about investing or managing money in retirement, and that comes with a free meal, there may be a few facts you should digest first.

Research by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation found that 64 percent of Americans age 40 and older have been invited to so-called "free lunch" seminars. While a free meal or prize might be enticing, in many cases the goals of these seminars are to recruit new clients and sell products.

"Even when described as purely educational, free-meal seminars typically have one aim and that's to sell you something," said FINRA Foundation President Gerri Walsh. "That 'something' might be a book, a particular product or financial services. But just because someone buys you a meal doesn't mean you have to swallow any pitch—that day or days down the road."

Securities regulators such as FINRA conducted more than 100 examinations of free-meal seminars. In half the cases, invitations and advertisements contained exaggerated or misleading claims, and 12 percent of them appeared to involve fraud.

If you decide to attend a free-meal seminar, be cautious and informed:

• Watch out for conflicts of interest. Even if the people who host a seminar or speak at the event are industry experts, they might not be the ones actually paying for it. At times, insurance companies or mutual funds finance these seminars, expecting the speaker to drive sales of their products.

• Do your homework before the seminar. Verify that the salesperson is licensed and the investment is registered at www.SaveAndInvest.org/LearnMore.

• Ask questions while you're there. What are the risks of this investment? How much does it cost initially to purchase the investment? For what type of investor is this investment a good idea? For what type of investor is this investment a bad idea?

• Don't buy anything or open an account on the spot. The seminar might be intended just to introduce you to the product, with a hard sell later. After the event, do some research on your own. Understand the risks. While the prospect of high rates of return might sound tempting, remember that there may be additional risks or costs associated with the product.

• Savvy investors refuse to be rushed. A good investment will be available tomorrow or next week or next month when you're ready and understand where your money is going. Rarely, if ever, do you have to invest your money on the spot.

For resources that can help you avoid investment fraud, visit the FINRA Foundation's website at www.SaveAndInvest.org/LearnMore.

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An "Eye-Opening" Shift In Classroom Learning

(NAPSI)—Computers and Smart Boards are a common staple in today's classrooms, and with programs like "bring your own device" to school, smartphones and tablets are also seeing increased use in schools. The use of technology both in and out of the classroom has many benefits for students, but it can also take a toll on their eye health and vision if proper precautions aren't followed.

According to the American Optometric Association's (AOA) 2013 American Eye-Q survey, 85 percent of parents indicate their children use electronic devices up to four hours per day. The survey also indicates that 41 percent of children have their own smartphone or tablet and 32 percent use both e-books and textbooks at school. Additionally, 66 percent of children use a computer or tablet to do homework or study. With the consistent use of electronic devices both in and out of school, children of all ages can face a number of visual challenges.

Frequent, prolonged use of technology can lead to a temporary condition called computer vision syndrome, or CVS. Symptoms may include eyestrain, headaches, fatigue, burning or tired eyes, loss of focus, blurred vision, double vision or head and neck pain. To rest eyes, students should follow the 20-20-20 rule—take a 20-second break every 20 minutes and view something 20 feet away.

As the use of electronic devices increases, eye doctors are providing age-specific tips and warning signs for parents and teachers to be on the lookout for this school year that may indicate an undiagnosed vision problem or CVS:

• Preschool/Kindergarten Children: Limit tech time to two hours or less and increase screen font size. During this stage, parents should also be aware of physical signs that may flag a potential vision problem, such as:

• Improper eye alignment or if one or both eyes turn inward or outward

• Excessive blinking or eye rubbing when children do near work

• Difficulty recognizing colors, shapes, letters and numbers.

• Elementary School Children: Encourage kids to use smartphones only for quick tasks such as texting, and to position devices half an arm's length away—slightly below eye level. Parents should ask children at this age:

• Do words "swim" on a screen or in a book? Do they lose their place frequently when reading?

• Does the child experience frequent headaches during the school week or while performing near work?

• Are the child's grades high in nonvisual classes and lower in other, more visually focused classes like math or reading?

• Middle/High School Children: Remind students that computers should be positioned 20 to 28 inches away from their eyes, with the top of the screen at eye level. Background settings on smartphones should be adjusted to keep vision comfortable. To stay involved with children's vision, parents should ask:

• How long can my children read before they need to take a visual break?

• Does my child perform with a lowered level of comprehension?

• Does my child experience discomfort or fatigue or have a short attention span?

Additional warning signs include:

• Squinting while reading or watching television

• Turning or tilting the head or covering an eye

• Consistently performing below potential or struggling to complete homework

• Having behavioral problems.

The AOA recommends that a child's first eye exam take place at 6 months of age, then at age 3, again before kindergarten and yearly thereafter. To find an optometrist nearby, or for additional information on children's vision and the importance of eye exams, visit www.aoa.org.

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