News Business Sports Entertainment Life Obituaries Opinion
Jobs Homes Cars Classifieds Shopping

Search PB Blogs



73 posts categorized "From the blogosphere"

September 30, 2011

Mayo Clinic employees and pay

Here's an interesting little tidbit about the pay of Mayo Clinic employees.

In 1999, only 17 percent of Mayo Clinic's employees surveyed said they were satisfied with their pay.

In 2011, that number rocketed up to 82 percent.

Mayo Clinic says it was not paying more money that made the difference. It was communicating more that made everyone happier about their pay.

"We didn't suddenly start paying everybody more. It was a focus on communication… transparency," says Karmen Reid, Mayo's director of compensation in an interview with a group called World At Work. "You can never communicate too much."

The Compensation Café blog picked this up and wrote a little about it.

Here's the World At Work interview.


June 03, 2011

Roch. native named 'Person of Year'

One of Rochester's very own has has been named Person of the Year 2011 by the Webbys, the online techno Oscars.

The twist is that the winner of this award, which has been given to Roger Ebert, Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Cobert in recent years, is not an actual "person."

It just acts like one on TV.

The Webby person of the year is Watson, IBM's "Jeopardy" winning computer.

WatsonIBM1 Watson is comprised of 10 refrigerator-sized racks filled with 90 Power 750 servers built in Rochester. In February, Big Blue's Watson cleaned the clocks of the two best-ever Jeopardy players.

And it even weathered Alex Trebeck's gentle jabs on the rare occassions it missed a question.

It isn't clear if Watson will attend the award ceremony on June 13 to receive its honor from host Lisa Kudrow.

March 07, 2011

Radient Pharma, Mayo Clinic link debated

Here's an interesting item that Adam Feuerstein wrote for The Street financial Website.

Logo It seems there is some disagreement between a pharmaceutical company and Mayo Clinic about their relationship.

Radient Pharmaceuticals has been buzzing about clinic trial results on its Onko-Sure, a blood-based cancer screening test, coming soon from Mayo Clinic.

Feuerstein checked in with Mayo Clinic and he got a different story. Here's some from his story about this:

"Mayo is not engaged in clinical studies with Radient and does not have a partnership agreement with Radient," Mayo Clinic spokesperson Kathy Anderson said in a statement emailed to TheStreet Friday.

Mayo Clinic's statement contradicts Radient's recent pronouncements regarding the pending release of results from a new clinical validation study of Onko-Sure, a blood-based cancer screening test


In a press release issued Jan. 18, Radient said it was making "progress on its clinical study with Mayo Clinic for the validation of the company's US FDA-cleared Onko-Sure" test. Results from this study are expected before the end of the first quarter.

The same Radient press release described the Onko-Sure clinical study as one in which "1,000 colorectal patient samples with various disease stages are being tested in parallel by RPC [Radient] and Mayo…"

Onko-Sure is a blood-based test cleared for use in the U.S. to measure the progression of colon cancer in patients already diagnosed with the disease.


Radient is hoping that results from this new study will generate interest and sales of Onko-Sure to oncologists. 

Logo-1 Mayo Clinic does have a fairly close link to another company - Exact Sciences - with a similar type of test.

I've written about Exact several times,

Exact is based in Madison, Wis. Mayo has licensed technology to Exact,which could earn Mayo some financial return.


January 11, 2011

Ex-Holiday Inn Express, exactly

OK, so I haven't forgotten about Rochester's missing Holiday Inn Express.

Holidayinnexpress2 This is the deal I wrote about last week. The IHG corporate office says as of Dec. 30, Rochester no longer has a Holiday Inn brand hotel. However, it still does have other IHG brands.

The downtown hotel, formerly known Holiday Inn Express, confirmed that it is now called Rochester City Centre Hotel. That means it is independent and currently has no brand.

The owner and general manager were unavailable last week, but it sounds like the GM will be able to meet with me later this week to flesh this out a bit.

So maybe by the weekend, I'll be able to offer more details on this.

On a related note, USA Today's hotel and travel blog called Check-In written by Barbara De Lollis picked up my piece on this and referenced it in a posting on Monday.

March 04, 2010

This day in blog history - Kiger's Notebook 5th anniversary

Here is a very obscure "This Day in History" moment.

Kiger's Notebook blogo 2x On this day  in 2005, I launched an informal online column (also known by the then-newfangled name of "blog") called Kiger's Notebook on

Remember the big head Jeff logo and when my mustache was brown? Ah, those were the days.

Since then I've posted almost 5,000 tidbits of southeastern Minnesota business news along with random things that interested or amused me.

It is continually a fun and entertaining personal project that has never felt like work. 

Eye of the Kiger

Despite all of the typos, bad puns and silly jokes, readers keep coming to see what I'm doing.

 The page views that topped out at 100,000 at the end of the first year have now climbed to a total of 4.1 million four years later. An average of about 2,250 people look at the site each day now.

Thank you all for the time you have spent reading and sometimes commenting on my work.

December 22, 2009

Rochester biz owner files to run for office

OK, I hinted at this a month or two ago and then again Thursday, but now it is reality.

A Rochester business owner - Jim Gander of Superior Plumbing & Heating, filed to run for state senator last week.

Here's a little from P-B political guru Heather Carlson's blog. Gander, jim

Jim Gander, owner of Superior Plumbing & Heating, is planning to challenge Sen. Ann Lynch for the Senate District 30 Seat.Gander filed his paperwork last week to establish a campaign committee with the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.

For more on this, go to the Political Party blog.

May 26, 2009

Mayo launches new science blog

This is kind of interesting. Mayo Clinic is opening more windows into its interior. Of course, Mayo completely controls the flow of information through these portals. But it is still nice to get this perspective. It is another source for leads for stories.

The description of "middle ground news" is intriguing. I'd love to write more of that kind of news. I am not a fan of press releases (they often miss the true news value), but a one line e-mail or quick phone call would be enough for me to jump on such a story.

And check out o=who was speaking at the Mayo Clinic Theater at the recent international biobusiness conference - mega-investor Steve Burrill of Elk Run fame.

 Advancing the Science is the latest addition to Mayo Clinic's family of blogs.

"It's aimed at the public, but the topic is how medical science improves patient care," says blog editor Bob Nellis of Mayo's Public Affairs Department.

"Mayo has so many great research stories to share," says Michael Ackerman, M.D., Ph.D., chair of Mayo's Research Communications Subcommittee. "This is a great way to let everyone be involved and to reach new audiences, as well."

The goal is to provide a virtual home for everyone interested in how Mayo's groundbreaking research impacts treatments worldwide. The audience includes everyone who fits that description — whether student, scientist, science journalist, research collaborator, or one of the more than 500,000 patients treated at Mayo each year and their family members.

"We have long needed a venue for discussion and for the middle-ground news, the items that perhaps aren't the best fit for a news release or for a long magazine article," says Nellis. Mayo's research communicators will be regular contributors, but guest posts from Mayo patients, their families, and Mayo investigators and research community are welcomed and encouraged.

October 17, 2008

Builders' bash @ Warners Stellian

Jeff and Carla Warner of Warner Stellian, along with folks from Cambria and Electrolux, rolled out the brats, the keg, the steaks, the wine and big prizes like a new washer and dryer Thursday night at the Rochester Area Builders Fall Networking Night.

And the crowds rolled in. The economy, politics, housing and hairstyles were hot topics.

I heard managers from two businesses - in different conversations - tell me that they have to tell their staff to stop reading Kiger's Notebook and get back to work.

MESSAGE FOR WORKERS WHO HAVE BEEN TOLD TO NOT LET READING MY BLOG GET IN THE WAY OF WORK - Don't listen to those supervisors! They have no vision. They are not innovators. Keep reading and one day you'll be the managers…Heh.

That's enough of my lobbying. Speaking of which , RAB President Brent Buchan of Energy Products & Design, Inc. gave a good non-partisan political pep talk about how important this election cycle is and encouraging everyone to be informed about the candidates.

And he even encouraged people to check on the Post-Bulletin's online election guide. See, another reason to read the P-B rather than working.

Buchan had a captive (he was standing in front of the door) and interested audience. of course, it was door prizes he was handing out that seemed to put a hush across the place.

Check out the tense faces (expect Mike Pruett, of course) in the crowd as the names were called.

A couple of electric drills that are part of the massive Trading Post tool auction that Grafe Auction is running this weekend were handed out.

Lots of towels (Check out how excited Diane Quinn of Beyond Kitchens was about hers) and coolers with built speakers (?).

Then the big deal - the washer and dryer was won by Jerry Jensen of Superior Plumbing.

All in all, an interesting night.

July 25, 2008

Cruise With Leaders - blogs and pics

Here's some from a follow-up story on the Cruise w/ Local Leaders event Thursday by Treasure Island Casino.

For the record, anonymous comments on stories and blogs were one the hot topics at the event. I felt the questions that touched on things like violence, Washington Village and other current issues were the most important ones.

So I blog issues at the bottom of the story. And to git the space I had, that part was cut from print. However, I'm including some that part here:

It wasn’t just Rah-Rah Rochester.

In-fill developments, gang violence and building difficulties were on the minds of Rochester business leaders as they peppered the top city and county officials with questions during Crusing with Local Leaders, an event sponsored by the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce.

On the banks of the Mississippi outside Treasure Island Casino, Rochester City Council President Dennis Hanson and Olmsted County Board Chairman Dave Perkins faced tricky waters as about 100 people threw questions at them.

Hanson opened the discussion by describing his recent ride with Rochester city police on a Saturday night.
Dangerous situations

“When the sun goes down, the community changes,” he said, describing the gangs, violence and drugs he saw in that one night.

“Dangerous things are happening in our community. We need to take strong proactive steps to get it under control now,” Hanson said. “We’re starting to understand…public safety is a huge, huge issue.”
Perkins, who pointed out that the county maintains the jail facility and provides social services, said these type of issues will not be solved by any single government group. “It is going to take the whole community,” he said.
072408leadercruise3jkReferencing the recent opposition to the Washington Village housing project, Tony Lehrman of the Rochester Area Builders asked how in-fill developments like that could be handled better. Neighbors felt like the apartment complex would hurt the neighborhood.

Hanson said the drive of developers to fill open areas and the concern of people living in those neighborhoods is not easy to deal with.

“We try to do what’s right. It is not easy,” he said. “I can’t vote against it just because I want the neighbors to like me.’

Chamber Executive Director John Wade asked if the often angry and meant-spirited anonymous comments posted on the Post-Bulletin’s Web site about issues like Washington Village impact leaders’ decisions.
“I think more and more blogs are driving public debate and not necessarily in a positive way,” Wade said.
Hanson said they comments do not effect the decisions he makes.
“We’re elected to be impartial,” he said. “It is emotional and they do hurt, but I don’t believe they effect policy.

July 16, 2008

Mayo Clinic = #1 whitest network on Facebook

OK, I finally take a peek at the famous, white-hot humor Web site and what to wondering eyes should appear - Mayo Clinic of College of Medicine at the top of a list on the most recent post.

And the list is of "the whitest networks on Facebook." Here's the top five on the list:

1. Mayo Clinic College of Medicine
2. Vancouver, BC
3. Gonzaga
4. Wittenberg
5. Oklahoma

For those not familiar with it, this site is a humor site. And there is a book by the same name.

Here's a couple examples of stuff white people like:
#99 Grammar - White people love rules. It explains why so they get upset when people cut in line, why they tip so religiously and why they become lawyers. But without a doubt, the rule system that white people love the most is grammar. It is in their blood not only to use perfect grammar but also to spend significant portions of time pointing out the errors of others.

#104 - Girls with bangs - If you see a white woman and you are trying to figure out whether she is liked or just merely tolerated by white people, the best thing you can do is get a quick look at her haircut. It is a known fact that white people love women who wear their hair with bangs that hang straight down.