Business Diary: Harsh words for litter-bug battlers

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The Independent Online

One imagines the British Retail Consortium is busy just nowhelping members battle through the snow or persuade cash-strapped punters to spend big this Christmas. Good of it then to take time out to offer some constructive criticism of the new Keep Britain Tidy logo. "Outdated and missing the point" is the BRC's feedback for the poor souls who spend their time trying to persuade us all not to chuck sweet wrappers on the floor. Apparently it doesn't encourage recycling.

Ashley in staff retention shock

The tale of how Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley managed to improve staff retention rates at the retailer is heart-warming: by offering generous bonuses to the best performers, he seems to have got shop-floor staff much more involved with the business and the strategy has paid off. Curious then thatAshley hasn't extended the model to other businesses he runs – like Newcastle United, where the replacement of Chris Hughton with Alan Pardew this month takes the number of managers he has appointed at the club to five in just three-and-a-half years.

Voda: protesters don't want to hear

Vodafone has decided against a direct confrontation with theprotesters who have been targeting its shops in a campaign that accuses the mobile phone giant of tax avoidance. Bobby Leach, its head of communications, tells today's PR Week magazine that while Vodadone has explained its position online, getting into a debate with protesters would be counter-productive. "The evidence is there for people who want to look, but I would question whether people want to find out about it," he explains.

Spooner would have a field day

More now on Hunt-gate, otherwise known as the Jim Naughtie affair. Should the Radio 4 presenter feel obliged to pay a visit to the Department of Culture to apologise to Jeremy Hunt for his famous mis-speak on the Today programme, he would be wise to steer clear of the large British chemicals business that is based in the same building. It's called Hunting. The building in question, by the way, is on Westminster's Cockspur Street. What would Naughtie make of that?