New Floors from Performer’s Flooring America Are an Easy Way to Transform Any Property

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Performer’s Flooring America is holding a “Red Carpet Clearance Sale” on some of its best 3-, 4-, and 5-Star rated floors until February 26. This flooring store in Bloomingdale, IL, is saving customers up to 50% on a variety of premium flooring options that include carpet, hardwood, luxury vinyl, and laminate flooring in Bloomingdale, IL.

There has never been a better opportunity to find unbeatable deals on the top brands of flooring that the industry has to offer. For customers looking to get elegant hardwood or luxurious carpet flooring, this event is a dream come true. Everything a discerning shopper could want is on sale at ultra-low prices until February 26.

Performer’s Flooring America is offering deals as low as 30%, 40%, and even 50% off their incredible array of flooring options. There’s even special financing available to ensure that all who visit are able to walk away with a new flooring purchase. Anyone who is searching for the latest styles of beautiful, high-quality flooring that won’t break the bank should check out the deals at this flooring showroom.

Even customers that don’t know what they want in a new set of floors need not worry. The showroom has dedicated design staff onsite to walk people through the entire process, ensuring that everyone gets the perfect floors to match their lifestyle. Trust in their experience in the ins-and-outs of flooring and home decor and take the plunge into buying quality flooring today.

This sale is by no means limited to a specific type of flooring that they carry; many select floors in the showroom are marked down by as much as half off. There is no reason not to stop by and check out the unbelievable deals on flooring from the industry’s most trusted manufacturers. Finding the right floors is a bit of a challenge for many shoppers. That is where Performer’s Flooring America specialists can help at every stage—from design to selection to installation. The Red Carpet Clearance Sale is this season’s must-attend sales event for anybody that wants new floors at an affordable price.

Call (331) 481-9937 right away to find out how to get up to half-off on top-quality floors from a trusted local flooring showroom.

They serve Bloomingdale, Glendale Heights, Hanover Park, Wheaton, and Schaumburg, Illinois.

Media Contact
Company Name: Performer’s Flooring America
Contact Person: Timothy Nenoff
Email: Send Email
Phone: (331) 481-9937
Address:25W561 Army Trail Road
City: Bloomingdale
State: IL
Country: United States
Website: http://www.performersflooringamerica.com

Source: www.abnewswire.com

Red Carpet Clearance Sale at Northport Flooring America Is Geared Toward Homeowner Projects

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Experience the difference of affordable, high-quality flooring in Akron, OH, at Northport Flooring America during the Red Carpet Clearance Sale. Choose from among such brand names as Hearth & Home for select deals through February 26.

When remodeling the interior of a home, this flooring store in Akron, OH, picking the style of flooring to be installed is one of the best ways to start the project. The type of flooring chosen for a residential space sets the tone for the look, feel, and value of the home. By choosing a stylish floor, homeowners establish a foundation upon which the rest of their interior aesthetic is based.

Investing in a home makeover may seem to be a bit daunting in terms of a financial investment, which causes many homeowners to consider it economically challenging. Fortunately, the current sale at this showroom offers an exclusive opportunity for its customers to pursue their design ideas with options for special financing.

At Northport Flooring America, homeowners who are planning to begin a remodeling project can take advantage of limited-time savings on a variety of high-quality floors that are up to 50% off of normal prices for the duration of the event. This exclusive offer also gives flooring customers a chance to take part in low-interest financing through either 12-month or 18-month payment plans that allow them to spread their investments out over time into more manageable portions.

With options available in a broad array of materials, textures, patterns, and colors, the showroom’s inventory features a massive selection of tile, carpet, luxury vinyl, laminate, and hardwood floors that are affordably priced for any budget. Upon arriving at the showroom, customers will be assisted by flooring specialists who can provide recommendations based on each homeowner’s budget and personal aesthetic preferences.

Call Northport Flooring America at (315) 925-6148 to find out more information about the Red Carpet Clearance Sale or visit the store’s website at http://www.northportflooring-america.com/

They serve customers in Syracuse, Fayetteville, Manlius, Skaneateles, and Cicero, New York.

Media Contact
Company Name: Northport Flooring America
Contact Person: Derek Fay
Email: Send Email
Phone: (234) 206-3792
Address:661 West Portage Trail Ext.
City: Akron
State: OH
Country: United States
Website: http://www.northportflooring-america.com/

Source: www.abnewswire.com

New Looks in the New Year during the “Red Carpet” Clearance Sale at Unger’s Flooring America

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Find select high-end flooring in New Haven, CT, at low-end prices during the Red Carpet Clearance Sale at Unger’s Flooring America. Save 30, 40 and up to 50% on their best 3-star, 4-star, and 5-star floors.

Explore designer-inspired products at a fraction of the original retail price at this leading flooring store in New Haven, CT.  Shoppers can save on top-notch brands such as Hearth & Home and more in a variety of materials that include carpet, hardwood, tile, and laminate.

This time-limited sale ends February 26. Customers can save big updating any room or office workspace. Stop by the expansive showroom and discover a world of interior design possibilities. With such amazing savings available, renovations can be kicked off for the New Year with fashion-forward flooring.

In addition to this limited time offer, customers who invest in new home or office flooring can take advantage of exclusive financing options. Purchase their best three, four, and five-star rated selections during this event and choose between 12 and 18 month interest deferment.

Choosing the flooring product that best suits a remodeling project can be a bit challenging. With a multitude of brands and finishes available at remarkably low pricing, Unger’s Flooring America empowers ambitious shoppers to create floors they’ve always dreamed of.

From luxurious carpet selections to versatile tiling, their showroom stocks various colors, patterns, and textures, making it easy for shoppers to find the right new addition for their needs.  Offering one of the largest assortments of showroom-quality flooring products, Unger’s Flooring America is the local preferred resource for remarkable solutions.

No matter what their design aspirations, shoppers are sure to find a high-quality selection fit to their specific needs. Talk to one of several knowledgeable flooring specialists to answer any questions regarding their products. Their professionals work closely with shoppers to help them find the perfect flooring options for any décor or budget.

For more information, call (203) 903-1849, visit Unger’s Flooring America at http://www.ungersfafloor.com/, or stop by their showroom to explore a medley of affordable flooring products.

They serve shoppers in New Haven, East Haven, Branford, North Haven, and Hamden, Connecticut.

Media Contact
Company Name: Ungers Flooring America
Contact Person: Phil Unger
Email: Send Email
Phone: (203) 903-1849
Address:915 Grand Avenue
City: New Haven
State: CT
Country: United States
Website: http://www.ungersfafloor.com

Source: www.abnewswire.com

Ziv’s workout announce extreme heat resistant 932?F BBQ gloves

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Protects hands against the heat of grilling, cooking, fireplace and oven mitts

Today, Ziv’s Workout is proud to announce their extreme heat resistant BBQ gloves. The product offer protection from extreme heat during activities like cooking, fireplace, smoking, pizza ovens, grilling, etc. No more burns and pain to your hands or fingertips, which can turn your favorite pastime into a disaster. The product comes with a 5-finger flex-grip construction. It is flexible, offer up to 932˚F heat protection and resistance, highly convenient and is made with the finest quality material.

The product can be purchased via the Amazon store at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LZLUGDI

“It hurts like hell when you burn your hands during your favorite pastime. Our extreme heat resistant product will protect your hand and save you all the unnecessary stress, pain, and suffering. It is made from high-quality material and is EN407 certified. Your cooking experience will never be the same again, we guarantee,” said Ziv Hal, CEO.

The BBQ glove is built for smooth movement, and the snug fit makes it convenient to hold anything firmly. The interior is constructed with breathable cotton, while the exterior is made with aramid fiber that prevents heat from penetrating. Also, the interior is very cozy, built to allow air circulation and prevent sweating in the hands. It is suitable for grilling, heating, pizza ovens or even any other activities that involve excess heat that can burn the hands. You can use it for cooking in the kitchen, to protect your hands when cooking for the family, guests or by a chef in a restaurant. You can also use it when smoking in the garden or when using pizza ovens.

“I can now grill, and burn things without coming back with burn marks! When using them indoors, I have to give myself some extra time to put gloves on but well worth the time, cause my basic oven mitts always tend to slip, and I get burned! I like that they are gloves versus a pad. It protects my entire hand and part of my arm,” said Jeanette A, a customer.

The BBQ gloves also come with bonus bear claws that make meat handling easy and fun. It offers the fullest extreme heat protection that insulates not only palms finger and fingertips but the forearm as well. They are stretchy, elastic and equipped with silicone grips that promote smooth movement.

About Ziv’s Workout

Ziv’s Workout designs and distributes high-quality products that make life a little bit easier for everyone. Their products are tested and trusted, offering great opportunities for consumers and fans.

For more information, please contact at +972505599004, ama662890@gmail.com

Media Contact
Company Name: Ziv’s Workout
Contact Person: Ziv
Email: Send Email
Phone: +972505599004
Country: Israel
Website: https://goo.gl/HRBMwa

Source: www.abnewswire.com

How Ford Made a Big Profit in Europe in 2016

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Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) said this past week that it earned $166 million in Europe in the fourth quarter of 2016, giving it a pre-tax profit of just over $1.2 billion in the Old World for the full year. That’s a sea change.

Europe was a huge money loser for Ford for several years. Here’s how Ford turned it around, and what’s working now for the Blue Oval in Europe.

A brown Ford Mondeo Vignale.

This European-model Ford Mondeo Vignale is roughly comparable to a U.S.-market Fusion Platinum — both very well-equipped and very profitable models for Ford. Image source: Ford Motor Company.

Alan Mulally’s 2012 turnaround plan paid off big in 2016

The story starts back in 2012. After a series of losses, then-CEO Alan Mulally laid out a comprehensive turnaround plan for Europe , modeled on the plan that had successfully turned around Ford’s operations in North America. As you’d expect, that plan included some restructuring and cost-cutting efforts. But it also included plans to bring several new Ford products to Europe, including some models that it had never before sold in the Old World, like the Edge and Mustang.

Those new models began to arrive at Ford’s European dealers just in time for an upswing in sales across the key markets of Western Europe. At the same time, Ford took steps to move its entire product line a bit more upscale, adding premium trim lines that it hadn’t previously offered in Europe.

The result? A $259 million profit in 2015 — Ford’s first after several years of losses — and a much bigger profit in 2016. More to the point, Ford’s fourth-quarter profit was up 27% from a year ago despite flat wholesale shipments and revenue, thanks to improved pricing and profitability on its current mix of products.

A slide showing key metrics for Ford Europe in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Image source: Ford Motor Company.

In an interview on Thursday, CFO Bob Shanks emphasized that those upscale product variants have been a very good story for Ford in Europe. In fact, he said, improvements in product mix accounted for about $100 million of Ford’s fourth-quarter profit. “And if you look at the full year, we probably got about $700 million in profit improvement just from mix in Europe,” Shanks said.

Shanks noted that a key part of Ford’s transformation plan for Europe had always involved enhancing the brand, moving Ford’s product portfolio up in terms of where the brand wanted to compete, and adding those higher-trim lines. “That has really paid off,” he said.

A look under the hood at Ford’s fourth-quarter result in Europe

“This is our seventh consecutive quarterly profit” in Europe, Shanks told investors during Ford’s earnings call on Thursday. He also said:

You can see that the wholesales were actually flat in the quarter, revenue also essentially flat. That decline [in revenue] is more than explained by exchange.

Our [market] share was down a touch, 0.2 point. That was explained by lower passenger car sales, that was basically Mondeo, Focus, and C-MAX. But within that, we had very strong performance for commercial vehicles. Our share [of Europe’s commercial-vehicle market] was over 14%, up 0.4 point. Not only were we the number one brand [of commercial vehicles in Europe] for the year, we were the number one brand also in the fourth quarter. Operating margin at 2.3% and $166 million profit. And if you go down and look at the full year, that was a record at $1.2 billion. It was also a record margin at 4.2%.

A slide from Ford's fourth-quarter earnings presentation showing how its profit in Europe grew year-over-year.

Image source: Ford Motor Company.

Shanks said lower costs helped drive the $35 million year-over-year profit gain. But he also reiterated the point he’d made to me earlier about profit mix. “If you look at the callout box on mix, that $39 million within that is about $100 million of good news on mix, both mix among products, as well as the right mix of options.”

Shanks and CEO Mark Fields also noted that, after a rough stretch, Ford’s operation in Russia is also seeing improvements, and those are contributing to its overall results in Europe.

Looking ahead: 2017 might be a little less profitable

Shanks also delivered Ford’s official guidance for Europe for 2017. He said that Ford expects Europe to be profitable, once again, but its 2017 profit will probably be lower than its 2016 result. The decline is driven, in part, by exchange rates, specifically the drop in value of the British pound, and partly by higher costs related to the planned launches of revamped Fiesta and EcoSport models in Europe during the year.

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The Zacks Friday Finish Line Highlights: Can Facebook Continue Its Insane Growth?

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL-January 27, 2017-Zacks Friday Finish Line is a podcast hosted weekly by Zacks Editor Maddy Johnson and Content Writer Ryan McQueeney that takes on the week’s biggest news from the financial and investment world.

Q4 Earnings Results Pouring In: Can Facebook Continue Its Insane Growth?

On today’s episode of the Zacks Friday Finish Line podcast, Content Writer Ryan McQueeney and Editor Maddy Johnson take on this week’s biggest story: the wave of fourth-quarter earnings results and the upcoming earnings announcement from Facebook.

Starbucks

The first earnings report that the hosts highlighted this week came from Starbucks SBUX . The coffee giant’s stock slumped after the company reported worse-than-expected revenues. While Starbucks was still able to post solid growth metrics in the quarter, its results fell short of analyst expectations and investors reacted accordingly.

Intel

Next up on the docket was Intel Corporation’s INTC fourth-quarter earnings report. The chip maker was able to post an impressive double beat on the back of soaring revenues in its Data Centers division, underscoring the success of its adaption to changing industry trends.

Microsoft

The hosts then moved on to recap some of the week’s big tech reports. Microsoft MSFT reported second-quarter fiscal 2017 earnings on Thursday, and the company was able to surpass our earnings and revenue estimates thanks to more impressive growth in its Intelligent Cloud business.

Google

On the other hand, Alphabet Inc.’s GOOGL report was mixed. The company missed earnings estimates but was able to surpass our consensus revenue estimate. While there were no specific details about Google’s new hardware, the “other” category that would include things like the Pixel phone soared more than 60%, so there were some encouraging signs.

Facebook

Finally, Maddy and Ryan spent some time previewing Facebook’s FB upcoming earnings announcement. Investors are cautious about Facebook’s revenue growth rates slowing down a bit, but the company is still poised to report another great quarter. The hosts also chatted about some of Facebook’s new features, including Facebook Live.

As always, thanks for checking out this week’s episode of the Zacks Friday Finish Line, and make sure to check back next week for even more news from the investment and financial world!

Want More Zacks Friday Finish Line?

Check back every Friday for a new episode that looks at each week’s biggest financial and investment news. You can follow the Zacks Friday Finish Line Podcast on iTunes , Soundcloud , and ZacksInvestmentNews on YouTube.

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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss.  This material is being provided for informational purposes only and nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, accounting or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold a security. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. It should not be assumed that any investments in securities, companies, sectors or markets identified and described were or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of herein and is subject to change without notice. Any views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the firm as a whole. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making or asset management activities of any securities. These returns are from hypothetical portfolios consisting of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that were rebalanced monthly with zero transaction costs. These are not the returns of actual portfolios of stocks. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit  https://www.zacks.com/performance  for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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Why Ford Motor Company’s Profit in Asia Dropped Last Quarter

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Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) said this past week that it earned $284 million before taxes in its Asia-Pacific region in the fourth quarter.

That’s not a bad result, but it was down 36% from the $444 million pre-tax profit it earned in the region a year ago.

Should shareholders be concerned? Let’s take a closer look at what Ford said about its result.

A brown Chinese-market Ford Edge SUV next to a lake.

The Ford Edge has sold very well in China since its introduction last year. Image source: Ford Motor Company.

Why Ford’s profit in Asia dropped last quarter

As you can see from the slide below, Ford’s wholesale shipments in the region were up 9% in the fourth quarter. Revenue was flat year over year, but CFO Bob Shanks noted that the revenue total doesn’t include revenue from the joint ventures (JVs) with domestic Chinese automakers that account for most of Ford’s sales in the huge Chinese market.

A slide from Ford's fourth-quarter earnings presentation showing key metrics for its Asia-Pacific region.

Image source: Ford Motor Company.

Shanks said Ford’s results in China were responsible for its gain in market share in the region. “That’s very strong sales at Escort and then the Taurus, the Edge and the Lincoln all contributing” to a year-over-year improvement in product mix, Shanks said.

Shanks noted that China was also responsible for the year-over-year drop in profit. While 2016 was Ford’s second-best year ever in the region, it was down from the prior year.

Shanks said there were two key factors in the drop, an unfavorable exchange-rate swing between the renminbi and the U.S. dollar and pricing pressures. Early in 2016, Ford lost ground in China to aggressively priced new products (particularly small SUVs) from domestic Chinese automakers. That put pressure on Ford’s sales at the lower end of the market, hurting sales of the Kuga (the Chinese version of the Escape SUV) in particular.

Ford responded with some changes to its operation that allowed it to cut prices while still maintaining good profitability. That allowed it to recover much of the market-share ground it had lost earlier in the year by the end of 2016. (In fact, Ford’s sales in China rose almost 18% in the fourth quarter year over year.)

A slide from Ford's fourth-quarter earnings presentation showing the factors in its year-over-year drop in profits in the Asia-Pacific region.

Image source: Ford Motor Company.

“You can see the impact on net pricing and the impact on exchange” on Ford’s fourth-quarter result versus its profit a year ago, Shanks said. He noted that costs were about flat year over year, and while Ford’s “mix” of products in China was more profitable over the full year, the fourth-quarter comparison includes two of its profitable new products, the Edge SUV and big Taurus sedan, both of which had been launched by the fourth quarter of 2015.

Looking ahead: Why Ford expects a better result in 2017

Shanks said that Ford expects its profit in the Asia Pacific region to improve in 2017 versus its full-year 2016 result. But it doesn’t expect that improvement to come from China.

“We think the China JV profits will be relatively flat. Margin will still be double digit but probably down a bit, again, because of continued negative pricing, although moderating from what we saw this year and unfavorable exchange. What we’re going to see is improved results across the rest of Asia Pacific, which we also saw in 2016 but at a pace that’s even greater,” Shanks said.

For investors, here’s the takeaway: Ford’s operation in China is successful and profitable, but as the overall pace of growth in China has slowed, Ford has come under some competitive pressure. That’s not surprising, and it’s not a reason to worry (much). The good news is that Ford is now putting some effort into improving its results in the rest of the Asia-Pacific region, and that should yield additional profit gains in 2017.

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John Rosevear owns shares of Ford. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Ford. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


20th Century Fox TV’s ‘Fresh of the Boat’ and Six-Word Memoirs Collaborate for Crowdsourced Immigration Stories

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SOURCE: 21st Century Fox

DESCRIPTION:

20th Century Fox Television’s hit series Fresh Off The Boat has partnered with Six-Word Memoirs on a new crowd-sourced book: Six Words Fresh Off The Boat: Stories of Immigration, Identity, and Coming to America (September 2017). This newest compilation in the bestselling series will feature the personal, complex, and profound emotions that generations of immigrants have felt as they built new lives in America.

“Fresh off the Boat reflects and celebrates the immigrant experiences of millions of people across generations. With this crowd-sourced book elevating voices from all across America, we hope to inspire anyone who identifies with the subject matter directly or through the lives of past generations to share their story in six words,” said Steven Melnick, Head of Marketing at 20th Century Fox Television. His six-worder: “Grandma’s Sunday greeting: gotenyu zisa boychickel,” which translates from Yiddish to “Dear God, what a sweet boy.” Other examples

Carried few possessions and many dreams.

Sister pretends she can’t use chopsticks.

Feuding with three family members? Persian.

Fresh Off the Boat, now in its third season on ABC, is loosely based on the memoir of entrepreneur and restaurateur Eddie Huang. The show follows a Taiwanese-American family as they adjust to a new life in 1990’s suburban Florida. The Six-Word Memoir Project was started by Larry Smith in 2006 when his tweet, “Can you describe your life in six words?” went viral around the world.

Fans can submit their own immigrant stories at sixwordmemoirs.com/FOTB through February 15 to be considered for publication in the book.

Tweet me: Fresh Off the Boat & @20centuryfoxTV want to hear your immigration stories! Check out #sixwordsFOTB & find out more: http://bit.ly/2kbAava

KEYWORDS: Diversity & Human Resources, fresh off the boat, 20th century fox television, Immigration Stories, Six-Word Memoirs

How #BellLetsTalk Takes CSR to New Heights

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SOURCE: FrontStream

DESCRIPTION:

On January 25, 2017, the #BellLetsTalk hashtag appeared all across social media, particularly Twitter and Instagram. Bell Let’s Talk, sponsored by Bell Media in Canada, is meant to focus specifically on sharing stories of mental illness in order to help normalize the struggles that people go through. Each time the #BellLetsTalk hashtag was used, 5 cents was donated to various mental health causes across Canada – this year raising $6,585,250 from 131,705,010 interactions. The yearly initiative has been going strong since 2010. According to their website’s mission: “Millions of Canadians, including leading personalities engaged in an open discussion about mental illness, offering new ideas and hope for those who struggle, with numbers growing every year. As a result, institutions and organizations large and small in every region received new funding for access, care and research, from Bell Let’s Talk and from governments and corporations that have joined the cause.” Their total donation projection is looking to be $100 million by 2020! Bell Media is a huge corporation in Canada, and for them to adopt this CSR initiative is a great example of how companies can both bring awareness to a cause as well as raise money for it. Here are a few examples of how people responded, both in Canada and around the world:

1 in 4 people are affected by mental illness. Time to have an open dialogue and end the stigma #BellLetsTalk pic.twitter.com/o0BhDDFF4F

— Greg Selinger (@GregSelinger) January 25, 2017

I’m seeing huge numbers of RTs on everyone’s #BellLetsTalk posts today. Let’s keep talking! Time to end the stigma around mental health.

— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 25, 2017

For every retweet of this, Bell will donate 5 cents to Canadian Mental Health Programs, and I think that’s amazing. #BellLetsTalk

— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) January 25, 2017

We even got into the #BellLetsTalk supportive spirit in the Toronto FrontStream office:

#BellLetsTalk pic.twitter.com/DnMG6b2Xr3

— FrontStream (@FrontStream) January 25, 2017

#BellLetsTalk pic.twitter.com/3DvfMAeVK9

— FrontStream (@FrontStream) January 25, 2017

All in all, #BellLetsTalk was another successful day of fundraising and awareness, as well as a strong conversation starter when it comes to mental health in our communities – be it our coworkers, friends, or family.

Tweet me: .@FrontStream takes a look at the 2017 impact of #BellLetsTalk http://bit.ly/2ktuvxO

KEYWORDS: Philanthropy, Media & Communications, Corporate Social Responsibility, csr, frontstream, Bell Let’s Talk, #BellLetsTalk, Fundraising, Awareness, Engagement, Social Media

Employee Mentor Shares Big Lessons

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SOURCE: Comcast Corporation

DESCRIPTION:

This month, Comcast NBCUniversal is expanding Beyond School Walls, our workplace-based mentoring program with Big Brothers Big Sisters, to NBCUniversal employees at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. Including Los Angeles, Comcast NBCUniversal employees currently mentor local schoolchildren in Comcast offices in 17 cities nationwide. Marissa Miller (pictured right), one of our nearly 400 employee mentors, shares below what it means to her to be “a Big.”

For Marissa Miller, it started in school. “My mother is a teacher and growing up I spent a lot of time in her classroom,” she said. Marissa remembers having teachers, professors and colleagues throughout her school years who gave her advice and guidance, and helped make her who she is today. “They have given me so much. They were family,” she said. They were mentors.

Prior to joining the Talent and Professional Development Team at Comcast, Marissa worked for a management consulting company. “I travelled quite a bit,” she said. “I didn’t have the opportunity to mentor because I was always somewhere else. So to be able to be home and to volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters was a great opportunity.” Two years ago, Marissa signed up to become a Big with Comcast NBCUniversal’s Beyond School Walls program, and was matched with Shenia, then 11 years old.

“She’s a phenomenal kid. She’s so smart, sensitive and thoughtful. She’s a really talented artist,” Marissa said. During their time together, Marissa and Shenia talk about school, art class, and other every day, ordinary topics. As they grew closer, Shenia, began to share more about her life and struggles. “Middle school is tough and I’m comforted that she’s confiding in me,” Marissa said. “We work on problem solving strategies. She’s been able to communicate what’s going on in her life that she hasn’t been able to say before. We work on dealing with stress. She takes what we’ve learned about communication to build a support system. She knows I’m there to help her make positive decisions.”

“I’ve ‘got her back,’ as she would say,” Marissa said.

For the school children like Shenia who are enrolled in Beyond School Walls, being matched with “a Big” introduces them to futures, careers and possibilities they might not otherwise have explored. “It’s helping her to recognize the potential that she has and the broad world about her,” Marissa said. She’s so insightful and kind, but at first she couldn’t see past her circumstances today. Now when we talk about her future, she imagines being an artist or an art teacher. Then she sees that her grades and attendance are important to helping her get there.”

Marissa has also, unexpectedly, learned some lessons that she believes make her a stronger employee. “Talking to Shenia makes me think differently. There are times when I’ll stop and think about how I approach challenges,” Marissa said. “I work in learning and development. Just like with Shenia, we hear about stress among other issues we all face. This has inspired me to put together a course on stress management to support our employees here at Comcast.”

The opportunity provided by Comcast to be a Big brings extra meaning to Marissa’s life and her job. “Insights from our conversations continually broaden my perspective, encourage me to consider various problem-solving approaches that strive to ‘keep it real,’ embrace and overcome challenges, and focus on meaningful growth.”

As Comcast NBCUniversal expands its Beyond School Walls program with Big Brothers Big Sisters, see how one Big is impacted.

Tweet me: Celebrating one @ComcastImpact Beyond School Walls Big during #nationalmentoringmonth @BBBSA http://bit.ly/2kupJAa

KEYWORDS: Volunteerism & Community Engagement, National Mentoring Month, comcast impact, csr, Employee Engagement