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Google’s employee benefits are to die for

Torsten Silz/The Associated Press/The Associated Press

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Search giant's new employee death benefits package generous to surviving family members

In a rare interview, Google chief people officer Laszlo Bock recently revealed to Forbes the search giant's new (and generous) death benefits package: If an employee dies, his or her surviving spouse or partner will receive a cheque for 50 per cent of the employee's salary every year for the following decade.

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Google employees have long enjoyed perks such as free food, haircuts and on-site doctors. Mashable reports that as employees enter the afterlife, the death package also offers spouses vested stock benefits, and children will get $1,000 a month until the age of 19 or longer if they're a full-time student. A Google spokesperson confirmed to Forbes that there is "no tenure requirement," meaning all of Google's 34,000 employees are eligible.

Obama small business campaign ad costs deli owner customers

A spot in a campaign ad for President Barack Obama turned into a lesson in negative publicity for Ohio deli owner Debra Krause-McDonell.

Ms. McDonell told the Cincinnati Enquirer that she's losing customers after a shot of her store appeared in a television ad for the president's record on small business. Ms. Krause-McDonell said she gave permission to camera crews to film the exterior of her shop, but claims she did not realize it was for President Obama's campaign.

Ms. Krause-McDonell told the Enquirer she would be equally angry if the ad was for expected Republican nominee Mitt Romney, and said she's "contemplating legal action."

Keep your interns away from Twitter

When it comes to social media, youth and being technically savvy are not necessarily synonymous. Recent graduates and interns don't have the maturity, etiquette or communication skills to manage your company's social media accounts, argues Hollis Thomases, president and chief executive officer of Web Advantage Inc. in a piece on Inc. Young and new hires might not understand the nuances and expectations of your company's services beyond social tools, making way for a potential public relations disaster. If you do hire a 23-year-old new hire, Ms. Thomases says, keep your account passwords close at hand.

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Grow conference

"Rethinking business: staying relevant in a new era" is the motto of the Grow conference taking place in Vancouver. The conference is part of Grow Week running Aug. 17 to Aug. 24, whose activities range from a Vancouver startup weekend to a one-day boot camp for entrepreneurs. The actual conference on Aug. 23 aims to explore "how the consumer revolution is changing the future of business." For more information, click here.

Small Business Summit

Vancouver is also the venue for the next Small Business Summit, to take place on Oct. 4. Presented by The Globe and Mail's Report on Small Business, the one-day event will include keynotes, panel discussions, mentor programs and other offerings. Save more than 40 per cent with the "kick-off rate" by registering before Aug. 31. For more information, click here.


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Growth in acquisition for startups

In July, acquired Halifax-based GoInstant for reportedly more than $70-million – the fourth Canadian startup to be acquired by the California-based company in the past two years. But entrepreneurs shouldn't be sidetracked by deep pockets, writes Wallace Immen. Here are a few legal, operational and practical points to consider before selling your business.


Stop making excuses and take time off

If you haven't already hit the beaches or some other vacation venue this summer, before it's too late, you may want to have another look at a column Mark Evans wrote in June, 2011, on why entrepreneurs should have no excuses to keep them from taking a break.

Got a tip on news, events or other timely information related to the small-business community? E-mail us at smallbusiness@globeandmail.comJoin The Globe's Small Business LinkedIn group to network with other entrepreneurs and to discuss topical issues:

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