Podcasting By Governors And Other Politicians Is Skyrocketing!

April 11th, 2010 admin Posted in obama health care policy Comments Off

Podcasting by Governors and other politicians is skyrocketing!

Imagine for a second that you are an up-and-coming politician running for the senate or a governors race – what’s the best way to reach out to your younger audience?

PODcasting has been the answer — So, who is doing it?

Rod Blgojevich

Governor Rod Blgojevich offers pod casting through his website Illinois.gov, http://www.illinois.gov/gov/podcasts.cfm – Stating that “Sometimes, you want to get your information on an issue straight from the source. That is why we have started offering ‘Podcasts’ on different topics.” He’s using these podcasts to talk about everything from jobs, schools, health care and energy initiatives.

Here are a few of his most recent Podcasts:

Illinois Unemployment Drops to All-Time Low

Proposal to Increase the Minimum Wage

Protecting Access to Contraceptives

Ernie Fletcher

Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher is the latest state governor to introduce a podcast. The Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Podcast lets people listen to the governor’s latest public addresses on their computer or portable media player.

fletcher.jpg”Moving Kentucky forward means making state government more accessible to our citizens,” said Governor Fletcher. “Podcasting is another way we are doing just that — bringing government to the people with the most up-to-date technology possible.”

The podcast is a free service available to anyone with an Internet connection.

Governor Fletcher becomes one of the first governors in the nation to utilize the growing technology that expands the use of Internet-based multi-media to reach constituents. Fletcher’s podcast joins Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s podcast and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger podcast.

“More and more citizens and businesses are going to the Internet as their first source for news, information and interaction,” explained Governor Fletcher. “Taking advantage of this technology ensures Kentucky state government is there to greet them.”

Chris Bell

Chris Bell, former Texas Governor offers several podcasts that share with his supporters topics that are close to his heart, but also offers him the chance to “play a little politics”.

CB Radio: Bizradio Podcast, Chris Duel today

Podcast: Chris on Houston BizRadio

Russ Diamond whom ran for Governor in Pennsylvania offers several podcasts including the following: Russ Diamon Podcasts

Barack Obama

Obama-PodcastMost notably Barack Obama of Illinois is using podcasts to push his agenda more than anyone! Obama’s website for senate offers plenty of options for listening to his podcasts.

Senate Democratic Majority.

Senator Obama discusses the new Senate Democratic majority and upcoming legislation, including an increase in the minimum wage, implementing all of the 9/11 Commission recommendations and a real energy policy.

Transparency Act and Chemical Plant Security

Senator Obama discusses the “Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act” being signed in to law today, as well as the chemical plant security legislation agreed upon by House and Senate negotiators last week that is far too weak and fails to adequately protect American lives.

Africa Trip Recap

Senator Obama just returned from a 15-day trip to Africa where he visited South Africa, Kenya, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Chad. He discusses his tour of Robben Island prison, meeting with U.S. troops, visiting refugee camps of those fleeing the genocide in Darfur and the need for addressing Africa’s growing AIDS epidemic.

Scott Fish

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What Obama’s Victory Means to the World of Project Management

April 9th, 2010 admin Posted in obama health care policy Comments Off

With the election of Barack Obama as president of the United States and his coming inauguration in January, many are predicting his impact in specific areas. While his priorities are shifting, and will probably continue to in the face of current critical needs, there are likely to be some continuing themes that remain consistent throughout his time in office, and they can provide some guidance as to what to expect. This is a good opportunity to think through what some of the impacts will be in the project management world.

To start, my approach is to look at five key priority areas. Here is my take on how they might influence project and program management:

1. Health care reform. Reform in health care is aimed at controlling costs and making health care more available and more affordable to many more people in the United States. On the cost control side, it would seem that we can expect companies and organizations of all sorts will put an increasing emphasis on accelerating cost-containment in their organizations. These methods are already in operation, possibly, but there remain untested policy initiatives that could speed up and make more efficient these methods.

Projects in the health care realm could include more Six Sigma projects for health care providers and pharmaceutical companies. It could include rethinking of priorities in favor of cost control and containment. Based upon many statements made, we can expect emphasis on more efficient information systems to manage personal and general health care information. The move to make health care available to most, or all, American citizens would seem to be quite a logistical and administrative challenge, spawning further projects in information technology and records management.

2. Energy. There has been a lot of talk about energy throughout the campaign, and hopefully not everything will shift as dramatically as energy prices have! But I think this will be a continuing source of projects of all sorts, and virtually everything in the energy field is big and requires expert project management skills. There are tremendous logistical and operational challenges throughout the whole supply chain, from extraction all the way through getting product to the consumer. Keeping some semblance of balance in that supply chain, especially in the face of erratic pricing and markets, makes that even more challenging.

There is likely to be an increased interest in alternative energy sources, including an emphasis on natural gas, drilling in new areas, wind energy, and solar energy. The key factor in my mind is the economics of each and tracking the variability in those factors, so that when changes come projects can be started rapidly. Given that most of these are large capital intensive projects, and that they are long term in nature, they will be hard to stop once started, and project selection and portfolio management will require exceptional skill.

3. Tax reform. Much emphasis has been put on tax fairness. This has been a clear indication that higher income individuals will receive higher tax rates. This could have an effect on consumer spending and possibly investment, thus effecting projects accordingly. It also may be that capital gains taxes will increase, and this will have a direct impact on the viability of projects many projects. The question is, how much of an impact, and specifically where?

My guess is that these tax policy changes will have a marginal impact as far as project managers go. I believe that those viable projects will remain viable, and only a few from the status quo will have to be changed. Of course in the short term, at least, the availability of money to finance many projects is a huge factor.

4. Education. Frankly, I am not sure at all what education reforms might be viable, but here are some ideas. Any educational service related to technology and the bringing of books, virtual classrooms, and interactive learning that bring efficiencies to the educational process will be considered. Other things that I think will be considered relate to customization of educational services or segments, such as charter schools who want to make their own innovative programs.

There may also be some macro changes in the educational system, related to local versus broader control of education. This type of thing would likely spawn information technology projects aimed at tying together information across local domains. Other changes in this area could relate to sharing teaching resources and flexibility across educational domains for both students and teachers.

5. Regulatory reform and infrastructure spending. There will likely an increased number of regulatory reform projects related to new financial regulations probably at the top of the list, just as there have been a plethora of Sarbanes-Oxley projects in the last few years, though there will be an increasing number of projects of that sort with the new changes to come.

Areas where such projects are most likely to occur include financial (at the top of the list) and environmental. Regulatory reform could have an impact on transportation, and the transportation infrastructure is likely to be the target of a great deal of fiscal spending. Any projects are likely to be large, requiring substantial professional project management, and many will also be information intensive.

John Reiling

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