Well, the Christmas and Holiday Season in 2016 is in full swing: Michael Buble’s holiday album is generating massive hits on Pandora; neighbor’s homes are decorated with projection lights rotating stars, colored dots, and various shades of green and red; and, Black Friday and Cyber Monday reported sales of 3.4 billion and 4.5 billion dollars – both records.

Holiday spending is a good sign, unless it’s causing financial stress.  We offer two programs that can help you alleviate that stress this season – our eESI Shopping Discount program, and FIN FIT – a financial wellness program .  Simply click the link to learn more.

President-Elect Trump is rounding out his cabinet.  Of special interest to small business owners is the appointment of World Wrestling Federation Chief, Linda McMahon, to head up the Small Business Administration. Some critics are ‘wrestling’ with the nomination of Oklahoma’s Attorney General, Scott Pruitt, to the Environmental Protection Agency, but not the SBA pick; Linda helped build the WWE from the ground up.  Regarding Pruitt, a friend of the oil and gas industry, and frequent EPA critic, his pick signals that President-Elect Trump is not embracing climate change at this point in his administration.

In HR, SHRM’s Trump Faces Choice on Overtime Appeal details the obstacles and schedule issues facing the Department of Labor; it is unlikely they will be able to receive a final determination before the inauguration; and, it is uncertain what Trump will decide about the rule once in office.  Stay tuned.

Amid uncertainty about Obamacare, many small businesses may be wondering what to do now.  Inc’s 4 Best Healthcare Options for Small Business provides a clear guide to your best options.

We reported last week that companies are altering their benefits packages to attract and retain top talent.  CIO’s 10 Companies with Benefits’ Packages You Won’t Believe provides you a look at just how serious some companies are about keeping and hiring top talent.  If you can’t alter your own benefits package significantly, at least you can take positive steps to enhance the employee experience: Inc’s 9 Reasons Your Best Staff May Leave in 2017 gives you a helpful list of things that consider.  And, SHRM’s Skill Shortages and Non-Competitive Pay Cause Recruiting Woes reveals why even in this tight job market, some jobs are still remaining unfilled.

In RiskBusiness News Daily’s 13 Cyber Security Solutions for Small Business presents you with software solutions that can help protect you from the rapidly growing number of cyber and ransomware attacks.

In Personal Productivity, Inc.’s Jessica Stillman posted Daily Creativity Keeps the Blues Away , which reveals research that shows those hobbies of yours have more value than simply relaxation … and Inc’s Damon Brown produced a brief video that shows you How to Make Time for Your Passion Projects … Quora’s 10 Simple Habits that Make You Instantly Likable presents a series of tips that can help you or your sales team professionally, and in personal relationships.

If you procrastinate, you now have real help.  Lifehacker reports that You Can Now Get One of the Best Short-Courses on Procrastination for FREE . Productivity trainer Kosio Angelov built a paid course at Udemy, and over a thousand people took it. He reveals the science behind procrastination, and offers simple tips to help you eliminate it; and, the course that used to be $47 is now FREE.

In Trends, do you know what RPA is?  It’s a new acronym for Robotic Process Automation.  McKinsey & Company produced an online post that explains it, and most importantly, how it may soon affect you – an interesting read … the new bluetooth is here, and it’s a lot more powerful than its predecessor …  and, do you remember the Jetsons?  Well, the time of the flying car may soon actually arrive; learn about it this week’s Tech Crunch article.

Enjoy Your Weekend.