It's an uncertain time to be a new college graduate. They need all the genuine job advice they can get.
Here's a start, culled from dozens of interviews with local leaders and commencement speeches from across the country:
Don't put your desire to change the world on hold. Start now.
Everyone, regardless of status, can teach you something.
Listen more. Talk less. And smile often....
A "business incubator" symbolizes a city's commitment to entrepreneurs and building an economy from the ground up.
St. Petersburg lacked one. Until now.
Powered by Pinellas County legislators, notably state Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, a $400,000 state grant was approved by the Legislature and Gov. Rick Scott to fund the new St. Petersburg Technology Incubator to be located in the city's downtown....
Tall, bald and intense, master-of-tough-love Adeo Ressi visited Tampa Bay in March to test its entrepreneurial passion and help introduce his global business incubator known as Founder Institute.
Ressi took the spotlight at St. Petersburg's Studio@620 to tell a room packed with locals with startup visions that it's a wonderful but painfully competitive thing to start a business from scratch....
05/18/13 Economic Development
Forget those pricey state economic incentives used like catnip to persuade companies to expand to Florida.
Want Fortune 500 corporations to replant their headquarters in the Sunshine State? Buy their CEOs nice beachfront vacation homes.
That seems as likely a lure as the millions in incentives waved at companies playing one state off another in the relocation game. Besides, it may prove more cost-efficient in the leaner times ahead....
Talk about a nuclear tale of two cities.
In Washington, D.C., Duke Energy's deposed CEO-for-a-moment Bill Johnson, now head of the Tennessee Valley Authority power company, stood at the podium of this week's Nuclear Energy Institute conference to unveil the industry's secret weapon.
It's a video of the North American Young Generation in Nuclear, the nuclear power industry's organization of youthful engineers and others who work at nuclear power plants. Some 300 of them, including a half dozen or so from a Duke nuclear plant in North Carolina, descended this week on Capitol Hill to spread the nuclear gospel to 200 members of Congress....
Does Tampa Bay have the brains and brass to transform its regional medical industry into a national hot spot of health care innovation?
It's a long shot at this point. But nearly 500 regional economic development industry leaders gathered Monday to consider reaching that goal by 2023. A follow-up meeting on June 26 in Tampa may trigger a thumbs-up on this medical quest.
"Tampa is staking its claim to be the place where health care gets reinvented," Dave Chase wrote online last week in Forbes. "As a byproduct, they will be one of the winners in creating jobs."...
Let's get something straight from the get-go. There is no perfect state for retirement.
"What would be a perfect place for my wife and me could spell total disaster for you," writes John Howells, author of the retirement bible Where to Retire: America's Best & Most Affordable Places.
But Florida deserves to rank high on any list.
The perennial battle among states trying to look good to folks — in this case mostly baby boomers — pondering where to retire spiked anew in recent days. Another ranking hit the media that named — wait for it — Tennessee as the best place to retire. ...
If airline flights are shrinking nationally, those in Florida are (pardon the phrase) on a crash diet.
Airline mergers, belt tightening and a recession that cut demand for air travel combined to contract the number of airline departures at U.S. airports by 14 percent between 2007 and 2012. The number of passenger seats offered also fell nationwide by slightly less, says a study made public Wednesday by MIT's International Center for Air Transportation....
Gazing at the business outlook through the eyes of Tampa Bay's biggest public companies, the scene ranges from inspiring to chaotic. Kind of like the 2013 economy. Let's take a tour based on comments of the area's top executives as they talk about their challenges in recent conversations with Wall Street analysts.
The two female CEOs in Tampa Bay running big public companies are on a roll. Bloomin' Brands CEO Liz Smith and HSN chief Mindy Grossman shared a rare event in the latest quarter. Both companies saw upticks in revenues and earnings. Only Paul Reilly, CEO of Raymond James Financial, can also claim such a feat in the latest quarter among the big publicly traded companies here....
Our remarkable state leaders in Tallahassee have spoken.
Both the judicial and legislative arms of government said last week that it remains perfectly fine for big power companies, including newly-arrived-in-name Duke Energy, to continue to force extra fees on their own ratepayers many years in advance to cover some of the costs of building nuclear power plants.
The Florida Supreme Court had the chance last week to put the brakes on this Guinness Book of World blunders. Instead, the justices punted, essentially ruling it was not the court's domain to get involved. And state legislators last week tweaked the 2006 law that created the advance fee, but left its original intent — charging customers now for projects well in the future — in full force....
On the heels of a major tax victory in Tallahassee, leaders of Florida's medical device industry gather this coming week in St. Petersburg for the 10th anniversary of the Florida Medical Manufacturers Consortium. State lawmakers agreed to a sales tax exemption on manufacturing equipment, a win that medical device makers and others say will help keep Florida's modest base of manufacturing more competitive with other states and countries. The industry is still pushing federal lawmakers to end a 2.3 percent excise tax on medical devices....
Now that the Duke Energy name officially replaced Progress Energy atop its Florida headquarters in St. Petersburg …
Now that protesters gather today in Charlotte, N.C., at Duke's annual shareholders meeting to condemn its repeated rate hikes …
And now that Duke is resisting any effort to have shareholders pay for the botched project that led to the Crystal River nuclear plant fiasco …...
Think you can set a fire and ignite a passion under Tampa Bay in only a few minutes? It's not easy.
But 32 diverse folks gave it a try in strictly enforced five-minute pitches at the landmark Tampa Theatre on Thursday night.
Themes ranged from pushing Tampa Bay's come-from-behind need for mass transit to new ways to fund civic projects and the workplace smarts behind this year's Fashion Week Tampa Bay. The evening was the third annual "Ignite Tampa" event, part of the national Ignite movement started by O'Reilly Media. The events are aimed at inspiring regional communities to get involved, make something better or, simply, get off our backsides and be more creative....
On Wednesday, the familiar AutoWay brand that identifies more than a dozen car dealerships dotting this metro area will disappear. The new brand name? AutoNation. That's the actual name of the Fort Lauderdale-based auto retailer — America's largest — that is now busy swapping out regional brand names in 17 different markets across the country for the single AutoNation brand.
AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson and his team will meet in Tampa on Wednesday morning with company employees to celebrate a brand shift the company had hoped to achieve long ago. The Tampa Bay Times recently spoke with Jackson about the new brand and why the new marketing strategy is happening now....
04/23/13 Economic Development
When upscale retailer Saks Fifth Avenue opened its fancy WestShore Plaza store in Tampa in 1998, it became a symbol to the region that this metro area was finally growing up — and had the disposable income to prove it.
Move aside, Target and Walmart. Saks, a seasoned and affluent New York retailer, did its own market analysis and decided Tampa Bay was sufficiently wealthy and style conscious to merit one of its stores....