Tag Archive: business


Corporate trajectories

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The business landscape will look dramatically different in coming decades.”

A culture change dialogs across geography, across business units and also across functions. By embracing people’s differences, we can spark innovation, better understand and serve our customers and gain competitive advantage.
Driving a successful diversity strategy begins with the senior leaders, but to be fully sustainable it needs to be lived by every one of us. If that seems challenging, think about this:

“Many leading researchers and social scientists have proven a link between diversity and productivity. “

In the United States, management researchers found that when people work directly with someone with at least one diverse trait, it challenges them to prepare more and work harder.
By embracing diversity in your business today, you can adopt an intrapreneurial mindset and sustainable skills that will help you succeed.

Here’s how you can start:

A.Learn to think like an intrapreneur

Intrapreneurship, or disrupting internal processes or cultural norms, is at its heart about innovation.

One group of innovators in particular figured out how to advance their industry through the way they approach challenges.”

– these are open-source software engineers, and they use design thinking.

It’s a good example of what intrepreneurship can be: pick a diverse team with a range of experiences and perspectives; make your mistakes early and be open about them. Without the diverse and constant input, these engineers would be less successful in the way they solve challenges.

B. Discover new places to network

As collaboration with diverse individuals provides new points of view, networking accomplishes this on a larger scale. By going to events for closely related professions, or simply connecting through social media channels such as Twitter or LinkedIn where you can virtually engage in conversations with anyone, you put yourself in a position for growth.

“Inside your organization you can join or organize a powerful employee network with a diverse set of peers.”


While interacting with your network, look for, accept and appreciate differences. Friction leads to heat, and our heat makes the atoms move faster!

C. Focus on the strengths everybody brings to the table

We are brought up in the Western World to focus on what doesn’t work or what is different. Challenge yourself to appreciate the differences of others and see them as potential drivers of change.

The more opinions, the more variety, and the more diversity we bring to the table the more we can unchain our creativity, which is hidden in every one of us.”

People with different communication abilities, for instance, can be diverse. Autistic people are known for thriving in repetitive tasks, which is an especially valuable skill set in today’s data-driven work environments.

These skills help uncover insights into customer behavior and business trends, and can lead to discoveries that alter how a company operates.

In the future of work, diversity will not be an option, but an imperative to sustain in our global, fast paced economy, where never just one person owns and knows the truth.”

D. Stand up to discrimination

Stand up if you see or experience discrimination.Raise your voice for the unheard opinion.

Help others appreciate how every person has a different strength and realize that in that strength there is opportunity to grow and be more productive.

For instance, if a colleague comments that a women aren’t as capable of understanding technology, remind them that CEOs Meg Whitman at HP and Marisa Mayer at Yahoo! have both outlasted their male predecessors.

By being critical of someone’s weakness you miss the chance to appreciate and benefit from their strengths.
The need for new perspectives becomes especially important when we examine the future workplace. As our world gets smaller, diversity doesn’t only mean differences in gender and race, but age and geography as well.

“Our world has become ultra-connected – successful companies find that to harmonize these connections relates directly to how fast they innovate. “

The implications are key for our global workforce because innovation thrives when we are faced with the unfamiliar. Diversity is what makes business more sustainable.


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The Latest Publication On Data Surveys

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In the fast-moving world of online marketing change is the only constant, emerging technologies, tough competition and increased consumer expectations have created plenty of uncertainty.

Many digital agencies are confused about how to deliver relevant ad experiences moving forward. However, in that uncertainty there are also tremendous opportunities to leverage data and deliver the personalized ad experiences consumers prefer. Advertisers can make the most of this and position themselves for long-term success – if they’re willing to question some longstanding assumptions.

Executing ad campaigns today takes a different set of skills and real-time bidding (a strategy search marketers have used for years) is now feasible for display, social, mobile, video, text, radio advertising and even TV.”

Executing search and display campaigns, for instance, used to require completely different skill sets. Now programmatic technologys merging them.

“Search and display are uniting under a common theme: leveraging data to target consumers with the right message, in the right place, at the right time.”

This creates huge opportunities (IDC estimates real-time advertising is growing 59 percent per year) only if agencies and marketers are willing to develop new skills and reassess how they’re delivering ad experiences.

The media buyer and agencies that win today -and tomorrow – have started to look a lot different than successful media buyers from the past.”

In understanding and developing the ability to buy in real time, traditionally, display media buyers negotiated with sellers to run ads for a fixed number of impressions or amount of time. All the terms were worked out beforehand in a conversational, delayed executed setting. Programmatic technologies allow advertisers to be more nimble. Instead of committing a significant chunk of their ad spend before seeing any results, advertisers can make small-scale buys, generate feedback and make adjustments in real time.

Buying becomes an ongoing process. Kellogg’s used real-time targeting to increase its ROI between five and six times.”

This creates enormous opportunities to maximize the ROI on every campaign. Buyers can use feedback to optimize campaigns on the fly – scaling successful ad buys and ceasing unsuccessful ones.

To develop analytical skills and strong technical knowledges,
the analytical skills could become increasingly important in executing successful ad campaigns. Seventy-five percent of CMOs are already using customer analytics to mine data. Acquiring these skills might seem intimidating for some media experts, but it offers huge advantages as advertising technology evolves.

“Going forward, successful media buyers will behave more like stock traders. They’ll analyze large sets of data, cross-reference them and run regression models.”


But they won’t stop there. It will be up to them to “translate” those numbers into actionable insights to best optimize ad campaigns.


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Latest News & Developments in Business Strategy Practice

A chance to catch up on much-needed reading to refresh and recharge your standards and leadership style scoured this lists of books that look at life and work in a whole new way. While these books are not your typical newest releases, they have timeless value and are best read together to rejuvenate yourself and, by extension, your team.
The review by Rebecca Talbot, Content Marketing & Research Manager & Leadership Story Lab sais:
Feeling comfortable in our workplace can have its downsides. It’s easy to fall into patterns and make assumptions about the people we spend our days with.”
The Coaching Habit by Michael Bungay Stanier offers a way to get beyond our assumptions about our coworkers’ behavior and learn their stories instead. Stanier’s short book explores seven questions managers can use to get people talking, and to train themselves to avoid thinking they “already know” what’s motivating people. His first question is simply:
What’s on your mind?

When we are willing to start our conversations with an open-ended question, the answers might surprise us!And that’s Stanier’s whole point-that we need to approach each other with far more curiosity.
The “what’s on your mind” question resonated with me because it is a question my dad used to ask me often when I was a teenager. The respect and curiosity implied in the question worked well to encourage a teenager to talk.
Likewise, family, friends and colleagues generally need an invitation before they will share what’s been important to them lately. Now that Stanier has reminded of that, I’ll be using this question more frequently and to that meaning find irresistible reading suggestions on new different ways of thinking as the following highlights. Find out more! Books are the only thing you can buy that gives you wealth and wisdom.

BEAT THE CLOCK! 2020 New Edition Available


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NEWS & OVERVIEW DISCUSSIONS IN DIFFERENT MARKET INDUSTRIES

Outthink The Future

 

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One of the most reasons for this failure rate is that entrepreneurs don’t identify their target demographic correctly. Without clarifying your core customers, selling is ultimately a function of individual, heroic efforts within the field, not a scalable platform for growth.
The following four steps can reverse this downward trend:

1.Assemble and analyze customer data
Every firm should know the way customer attributes link to core selling metrics, including profitability, cost of customer acquisition and customer-lifetime value. While this information is usually scattered across multiple functions during a company, it’s worth pulling together to determine a standard language of customer value across functions.

2.Get the sector involved
 People in frontline positions hold the simplest understanding of customer behavior because it relates to the seller’s cost implications and will be involved in reviewing the information gathered. What can they tell us about profitable or unprofitable customer attributes? What else could be driving customer acquisition costs during a segment? What are the implications for the organizational change?

3.Determine who actually generates cash
 Implications from deeper understanding of your customers typically involve changes in how you measure sales effectiveness, performance reviews, incentives, product mix, channels and sometimes “addition by subtraction,” or the method of improving performance by not selling to certain styles of customers. the prices of serving customers, for instance, can vary dramatically for the vendor. Some customers require more calls, some buy few large production-efficient order quantities et al may buy more in overall volume but with many just-in-time orders, impacting delivery and other cost-to-serve elements.
Sales people are often dogged optimists in their call patterns, often assuming that there must be a pony in there somewhere. Yet by knowing who the purchasers that generate cash really are, you’re ready to clarify the worth proposition embedded during a strategy and align resources accordingly.

4.Communicate your criteria

The breadth of potential changes means communication is critical. Leaders must devote time and energy to discussing the rationale and what they mean for the business. In practice, most companies don’t take customer selection seriously until things go sour. However, communicating customer criteria now can contribute to faster deciding and greater profit later. The marketplace has no responsibility to tell you whether or not your sales people are barking up the incorrect tree.

It’s your responsibility as an entrepreneur to think through and clarify your customer selection criteria. Done correctly, it can provide a scalable sales model, focus resources and establish an ongoing process for adapting your criteria within the face of inevitable market changes.


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NEWS & OVERVIEW DISCUSSIONS IN DIFFERENT MARKET INDUSTRIES

Connecting Successes


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In challenge, success is based on others success.
The adage that two brains are better than one may explain why a lot of entrepreneurs and small business owners, create partnerships. However, it’s not just those brains that should work well together. Partners’ personalities need to get along too.

If you are a serial entrepreneur who’s launched many companies, making a number of partnerships in the long way, this could brought the learning of some priceless lessons when creating those partnerships.
Among the most helpful tips that they are to be discovered, a reliable one îs making sure that you get along with your business partner. It’s important to find someone who complements your skills, but don’t underestimate the importance liking one another.
Communication is another big part of a business relationship
There’s a great article from earlier this year about a long-lasting business partnership and communication is a theme that runs throughout.
You can learn many things about creating and maintaining partnerships during this past two decades. Although there are dozens of tips, here are five key lessons:

  • Partnership agreements: As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, a good thing to do is to have the right agreements in place. It’s important for business partners to have clear partnership agreements drafted by attorneys.
  • Clear expectations: I’ve also suggested to avoid the hard way thinking people, including business partners that can not predict the next step. I believe business partners should consistently set their expectations with each other.
  • Think about your clients: When evaluating a potential business partnership, I look at weaknesses. I also think about clients and what type of partnership would benefit them.
  • Mutually beneficial: It might sound obvious, but still should be noted. Partnerships should be mutually beneficial. In my experience, both sides need to gain something from the relationship for it to be worthwhile.
  • It’s ok to walk away: Like any relationship, a business partnership holds a great deal of promise. However, sometimes it doesn’t work out. That’s alright. Don’t stay in a business partnership if you believe it’s no longer viable. I’ve learned that it’s better to end the partnership and regroup than to force something that’s not working.

“For a better understanding to how to get started in achieving good partnerships, is taking in consideration the history in the early 1700s when workers gave way to machine operations and then the 1800s Henry Ford in mass production changed manufacturing forever, then came robotics, computers, lean manufacturing and the lean sigma. “

Each success is connected to get products out the door and now we got a connected understanding.


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The Latest News On Contemporary Developments in Business Strategy Practise

Comercial Leaders



What it truly comes down to the employee-employer relationship? Information discharged by Virgin Pulse uncovers precisely what representatives got to cherish in their job – and expansive portion reveal that excellence comes from a great relationship with their boss.

In fact, nearly 60 percent of the more than 1,000 full-time employees surveyed said that their relationship with their employer positively impacts their focus or productivity at work, and 44 percent said it positively impacts their stress levels.

Considering nearly 50 percent of the 7,200 adults surveyed in a recent Gallup study left a job,

to get away from their manager.”

1. Open communication

The key to any great relationship is communication that goes both ways. Tragically, representatives don’t feel like their bosses are truly tuning in. A later study of more than 1,000 U.S. representatives by 15 Five appeared a unimportant 15 percent of workers are fulfilled with the quality of working environment communication.

great relationship is communication that goes both ways. Tragically, representatives don’t feel like their bosses are truly tuning in. A later study of more than 1,000 U.S. representatives by 15 Five appeared a unimportant 15 percent of workers are fulfilled with the quality of working environment communication.

What’s more, that same study found that 81 percent of employees would rather join a company that values “open communication” than one that offers great perks.

To create a work environment that supports open communication, consider implementing a web-based feedback platform. According to the survey by 15Five, 70 percent of employees said they’d be more likely to share information with managers if they could enter comments into an online feedback system.

2. Opportunities and investments

In a perfect world, both parties bring something in, and get something out from their relationships. For managers, the benefits of a great employee-employer relationship incorporates a workforce that’s exceedingly locked in the beneficials and fulfillement for their parts inside the organization. An viable and efficient workforce is nice for any business. For workers, the focal points of the relationship ought to go in the past to the paycheck and benefits that bundles into incorporate individualized training.

3. Gratitude and appreciation

It’s in our nature to need to be lauded for a work well done – a result of accepting “gold stars” amid our schoolyard days, no question. It consoles, propels and gives us the fuel we got to proceed doing what we do well.

In fact, Globoforce and SHRM’s 2015 Employee Recognition Report showed 86 percent of the 823 HR professionals surveyed said values-based recognition increased employee happiness at work, so don’t hold back on the “thank you” notes and pats.Employees will appreciate the recognition, and the employee-employer relationship will get a much-needed boost.

4. Interest in life outside of work

The employee-employer relationship ought to be proficient, but that doesn’t cruel bosses shouldn’t take the time to urge to know the individual behind the work. Endeavor treat workers as individuals, not fair worker bees. The key is to require an intrigued in employees’ lives exterior of work. What are employees’ individual and proficient objectives? Where do they trust to be in five a long time? Do they have a family? What do they like to do once the workday is over?

Questions like these help employers to know their employees on a more personal level. That helps them make sense of individual employee actions and preferences, and forms a much stronger bond between employers and their employees.


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Latest News for Strategy Business Developments

Scientific management


 

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No tyrant or slave driver in the ecstasy of his most delirious dream ever sought to place upon abject slaves a condition more repugnant.

There’s small space for Taylor’s thoughts in today’s world of freewheeling collaboration. But the works of individuals such as Michael Doorman and Michael Pound, with their accentuation on breaking commerce down into quantifiable (and controllable) exercises, hold more than a swoon resound of Taylor’s thoughts.

Taylor was the first man in history who did not take work for granted, but looked at it and studied it. His approach to work is still the basic foundation.


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The Latest News & Developments in Business Strategy Practice

Dealing With Diversity

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As a result of the suits and the reputation encompassing it, worker particularly directors must go to sessions approximately the preferences of a multiracial clientele.

reputation encompassing it, worker particularly directors must go to sessions approximately the preferences of a multiracial clientele.

The reasons, over and over human tolerability, are practical. One is the moving confront of the workforce, as guys, who utilized to be the overwhelming gather, are getting to be a minority.

A overview of a few hundred companies found that more than three-quarters of unused worker were from distinctive teritories – a statistic move that’s too reflected to a large expand within the changing pool of clients.

Another reason is the expanding require for universal companies to have representative who not as it were put any inclination aside to appreciate individuals from different societies (and markets) but too turn that appreciation to competitive advantage.

A third inspiration is the potential natural product of differences, in terms of increased collective inventiveness and entrepreneurial vitality. All this implies means implies that the culture of an association must alter in conclusion to cultivate resilience, indeed in case person predispositions stay.

Expect change

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Commerce streams is within substantial amounts of foreign trade and hence movements of currency, result from the activities of very large multinationals companies or enterprises.

One sign of this the number of companies from the developing countries shows up within the Fortune 500 list of the world’s greatest companies.

Substantial amounts of foreign trade and hence movements of currency, result from the activities of very large multinationals companies or enterprises.

The transnationality list gives the degree of an MNE’s inclusion overseas by looking at three proportions remote asset/total resources, remote sales/total deals and remote employment. As such it captures the significance of outside exercises in its in general exercises. These multinationals are tremendous associations and their showcase esteem regularly surpass the GNP of numerous of the nations in which they work.

There are over 60000 MNE’s around the world and they are estimated to account for a quarter of the world’s output.

The development in MNE’s is due to unwinding on trade controls, making it simpler to move cash between nations, and the enhancements in communication, which makes it conceivable to run a world-wide commerce from one nation.


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Latest News for Strategy Business Developments

The power of systems

In selling directing through distributors and collaborate with installers and contributors for project service distribution, putting a system engagement employee it’s a solution that allows you to access information and make it available to your organisation.

An article from Harvart Business Reviews with the headline “The Digital Transformation of Business”, where they surveyed 537 of their customers that were asked about the most important place where they can begin in making investment, and there answer is in customers facing technology.
Although the four “megatrends” of cloud, big data, mobile and social technologies are clearly having a positive impact, industry watchers who believe that only a few early adopters have been able to transform their organizations with these technologies are mistaken.
Digital transformation is occurring rapidly at a majority of public and private sector organizations.

Business leaders are not simply deploying the four technologies to boost efficiency or otherwise cut costs. Instead, research shows that firms are embracing the megatrends to craft new business models, develop new revenue streams, or drive other material changes that lead to an increase in the top or bottom lines.

It’s a full-fledged mobile sales terminal for the whole customer experience,”

says Greenbaum.
Eventually, the mobile devices—together with a growing number of in-seat flat screen TVs—will enable Delta to sell higher-value seats, book new flights, reserve hotel rooms, or rent cars while in flight, delivering new services and new sources of revenue.
In addition, the airline says it will eventually provide flight attendants with customer-specific information from Delta’s customer relationship management (CRM) system on their mobile devices to enable more personalized service.

That’s pretty transformational,”

says Greenbaum.
The widespread use of mobile technologies is also having an impact on the public sector. For example, the Metropolitan Police in the United Kingdom wanted to dramatically improve the way suspects brought into the police station were processed.
Aside from the fact that the suspects weren’t always cooperative, the technology used to capture photos of the suspects was aging, and image capture had to be performed in a fixed manner by trained specialists in a specified location. At the end of the day “it was a cumbersome and difficult process,” says Richard Thwaite, chief information officer of the Metropolitan Police.

A. MOBILE CONNECTS EMPLOYEES TO THEIR WORK AND EACH OTHER

Benefits of using mobile devices and applications

To improve its booking process, the agency deployed tablets with specialized mobile applications to police officers so they themselves could capture multiple images and video clips of the suspects, including tattoos or clothing, in a less confrontational manner, and enter it into their systems quickly.

Other innovations the Metropolitan Police is pursuing include cameras on officers and a text messaging service to reduce emergency calls.

We are going to use technology to stop crime, arrest offenders, or help victims. We need to keep police officers out of police stations and reduce bureaucracy,”

says Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe.

Digital policing will help us to do this.”

Similarly, the growing ubiquity of mobile technologies is having a transformative impact by helping to deliver healthcare services to underserved populations.

None quarter of all stillborn births happen in India—600,000 a year in that country alone—largely because so many expectant mothers live too far away from sources of good maternal and obstetric care.

Wipro, a system integration services company, looked at the inefficiencies in delivery of medical care to these women in India and decided that there were several areas where technology could dramatically improve the process.

Last year, Wipro unveiled a system that enabled healthcare providers to deliver remote prenatal and cardiac care using mobile technologies.

The AssureHealth platform combines a mobile application, integrated medical devices, analytics, and cloud services. A wireless monitor records heart rates or uterine activity and delivers the information via Bluetooth to the mobile device.

The device sends the data to the cloud, where it is analyzed, and a doctor hundreds of miles away can download the results and provide an assessment in real time. In areas of India where health services aren’t readily available, explains T.K. Padmanabha, CTO of Wipro,

what is available is the phone.”

With regard to the risks involved in deploying mobile technologies, the survey found that data security far outpaces other concerns.
Survey respondents who said mobile technologies are a critical part of their infrastructure are also likely to name data security as their number one worry.

Employees have access to your data on a device they can—and will—lose,”

says David Chappell, principal with technology consultancy Chappell & Associates.

The portability of data and apps, plus the use of personal devices, raises red flags.

B.SECURITY RISKS ARE RELATIVE

Data security ranks as an important risk, especially for mobile and cloud

Security is an important concern with all four of the megatrends. When it comes to the public cloud, for example, security is

“a trust issue,”

says Chappell.

And it takes time to build that trust.”

Greenbaum notes that executives are more aware of security issues these days because of recent events, including revelations about the U.S. government’s National Security Agency (NSA) snooping, massive data breaches at Target and other retailers, and the Heartbleed bug that exposed vulnerabilities in a widely used web security protocol.
Leading companies are dealing with the security risks associated with the widespread adoption of mobile technologies by developing sound BYOD strategies.
They are adopting device encryption and two-factor authentication, as well as using Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions to wipe out corporate data on devices if they are lost or stolen.

C. CLOUD COMPUTING DRIVES BUSINESS AGILITY

According to the study, 53 percent of respondents said that the cloud’s ability to deliver flexible capacity as needed is the technology’s leading benefit, followed by 50 percent of respondents who said that increased business agility was its main benefit.

Forty-three percent pointed to lower fixed costs from using cloud-based solutions as its key benefit. Going forward, cloud computing is primed to have a powerful impact on businesses in 2015.

More than three-fifths (62 percent) of respondents say cloud will transform their businesses in the next 12 months, up from 47 percent who say it’s doing so today. It will also change the way people work, according to 56 percent of those surveyed.

While cloud technologies have clearly had an impact on IT departments, companies are doing more with them than revamping IT operations.

We’re beyond the first generation of cloud transformation, which was just facilitating the move from capital to operating expense. Now we’re looking at ways in which we can more easily enable collaboration and deploy services in elastic fashion,”

offers Greenbaum.

D. CLOUD MAKES BUSINESS FLEXIBLE AND COST EFFECTIVE

Benefits of cloud computing

Companies need to be agile, flexible, and fast to meet customer expectations. Cloud computing can be key to that responsiveness.

We have customers who give us 90 days to get something up and running,”

observes Padmanabha of Wipro.

There’s no way I can do that in my traditional data center.”

The public cloud delivers a time-to-market advantage that’s hard for enterprises to beat.

“We see a lot of traction with customers who have projects that have a short window of time to deliver results,”

Padmanabha says.
Wu Feng, a professor of computer science, electrical & computer engineering, and health sciences at Virginia Tech, concurs that the flexible capacity of cloud-based solutions can enable dramatic increases in performance that weren’t available previously.

Next-generation sequencers are capable of doubling the amount of data that they generate every eight or nine months.

We’re generating data faster than we can analyze it,”

Feng says.

A cloud solution, which optimizes data management and data transfer, delivers better performance and access to DNA sequencing tools and resources, leading to faster advancements in medical research.
As with mobile, security issues and privacy concerns are the main barriers that inhibit cloud adoption.

“I’m in a highly regulated business. Beyond that, I’m in a consumer-facing business where I’m accountable for the stewardship of personally identifiable customer data,”

says Ray Voelker, CIO of Progressive Insurance.

Because encrypting data in the cloud would slow down the speed of analytics, Voelker says he’s evaluating hybrid cloud solutions.

Most companies look at a hybrid environment,”

says Greenbaum.

“They don’t do everything in the cloud. But as new services and capabilities and opportunities come up, they look to do that via cloud services.”

Despite some hesitation, the study identified strong support for cloud-based solutions as more than just a way to reduce IT infrastructure and personnel spending.

The study found that leading companies are using the rise of public and private cloud computing to create new business models and services in addition to taking advantage of the greater cost efficiencies and scalability features that the cloud provides.

E. BIG DATA HELPS COMPANIES INNOVATE

The advent of new data analysis solutions such as in-memory computing, along with the ability to host many of these solutions in the cloud, is enabling enterprises to overcome the traditional barriers to big data analysis.

Organizations today have the ability to process and analyze large quantities of structured and unstructured data to generate business insight in real time. With the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT)—including wearable computing, connected cars, and smart cities—the amount of data organizations have available to analyze is set to increase exponentially.
Even now, just over half (54 percent) of respondents say that big data has transformed their organizations; 70 percent expect it to do so going forward.

For those who master big data, the biggest payoffs are allowing the integration of more data into decision making processes (according to 62 percent) and enabling faster generation of insights (cited by 52 percent).
Progressive has collected more than 178 terabytes of data via Snapshot—11 times the amount of all data stored by the Library of Congress.

It provides for a much more accurate pricing method for Progressive than estimating a customer’s potential for loss based on information like age, gender, and type of car, says Voelker.

What’s more, it has enabled an entirely new and successful product category—usage-based auto insurance.

It’s revolutionary to us,”

says Voelker.

Every time we find a more powerful segmentation variable, it drives more growth.”

Another example of a leading organization using big data to innovate comes from Auckland Transport, New Zealand’s public transport agency.
The agency analyzes four terabytes of operational data, including bus ridership, to discover the most popular routes, identify routes to expand, and improve the customer experience.

It’s a substantial undertaking,”

says Roger Jones, Auckland Transport’s manager of IT and business systems.

We have to figure out how to transform that data to information and then make that information relevant to the customer.”

In the future, Auckland Transport plans to analyze images from around the city to understand where traffic congestion occurs or to assist with public safety.

Ultimately, the agency will deliver personalized alerts to citizens letting them know their bus is running late or that there’s increased traffic on their usual route to work.
Despite the promise of big data, however, it remains hard to manage, hard to interpret, and hard to integrate into day-to-day business operations and decision making. Further, success doesn’t happen overnight.

The companies that are good at [big data] have been working on it for quite a while,”

says Thomas H. Davenport, professor of IT and Management at Babson College and author of Big Data @ Work.

Davenport points out that one of the earliest users of business analytics—UPS—has been working on telematics to track its packages and delivery trucks for 25 years but only recently announced plans for analytics-based dynamic routing (itself a project 10 years in development).

Further, skilled data analysts and scientists, who understand both the statistical modeling and the business applications of big data, are hard to find.
Nearly half of respondents (48 percent) say that a lack of data analysis skills is the biggest barrier to big data. Even those who regard big data as a critical part of their operations find it difficult to hire the necessary talent.

Leading companies are addressing this talent shortage by hiring skilled contractors or working with consulting firms that have big data practices.
Some are getting more creative. Jones, at Auckland Transport, is addressing the talent shortage by working with data scientists at local universities.

There’s a wealth of opportunity for PhDs who might unearth something interesting mixing our data sets with other data sets,”

There’s a wealth of opportunity for PhDs who might unearth something interesting mixing our data sets with other data sets,”


he explains.

The department is also sponsoring a hackathon.

It’s about exposing some of our data feeds so others can analyze it in ways we might not be able to internally.”

Further, the study results highlight that successful organizations are those that adopt a big data mind-set.

Business leaders must create a culture that embraces the intelligence big data delivers, agrees Donald A. Marchand, professor of strategy execution and information management at the International Institute for Management Development (IMD).

You have to treat bad news as good news and be willing to act on it,”


he says.

You need the ability to see that the way you thought about things in the past may not be productive in the future.”

And this point of view has to be pervasive—from the C-suite to sales and product development to the front lines.

F. SOCIAL TRANSFORMS CORE BUSINESS PROCESSES

According to the survey, the consulting and business services sector is the most transformed by social media—more than half of that sector’s respondents indicated that they had already experienced a transformational effect from social. Early business successes with social networking are most visible in outbound marketing activities: 51 percent of respondents say that social media has increased their company’s ability to effectively communicate with its customers.

G. THE DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION OF BUSINESS

Industry experts observe that social media is becoming a core aspect of modern digital marketing strategies, and they see potential for it to radically transform the marketing function.

But forward-thinking organizations are not using social networks only to listen to and better understand customer sentiment about products, brands, and companies as a whole.

They are also using social technologies for recruiting and HR management, and for collaboration and communication with employees, partners and suppliers. The survey findings indicate that social technology is positioned to have a broad impact.

Survey respondents who deem social technology to be critical to their infrastructure (22 percent) are significantly more likely than their peers to say they benefit from an increased ability to innovate.
Even businesses that haven’t yet embraced social media anticipate its potential. More than half of all respondents say that social technology will transform their organizations (57 percent) and the way they work (58 percent) in the next few years.
Four years ago, Ask.com, a leading online brand for questions and answers, hired Eric McKirdy to improve the customer support experience and improve the support team’s internal operations.

By deploying a CRM application that integrates mobile social media listening capabilities, the company has transformed both. One key change in how Ask.com’s customer support team works is that they can now manage support tickets, including those generated through social media, entirely by smartphone, without being tethered to a laptop or an office.
Similarly, Auckland Transport is evaluating social tools to listen and respond quickly to citizen comments and even prevent security dangers.

The agency plans to mine that unstructured data, analyze it, and feed it to the operations team to respond to—and someday prevent— transportation problems. Like Ask.com, Auckland Transport eventually plans to create service requests from complaints posted on social networks, feed them into a CRM system, and manage them proactively.

Business leaders note, however, that it isn’t always clear how best to incorporate social media into core business operations.
Social technologies are often not integrated with core operational systems, and the data they generate is unstructured.

As far as enabling line of business transactions and being used beyond boosting marketing and the employment brand,”

says Progressive Insurance’s Voelker,

says Progressive Insurance’s Voelker,

“it’s less mature as a business tool.”

The main concerns survey respondents have about social technology include the time spent by employees using it (cited by 45 percent) and employee information overload (cited by 40 percent).

But leading companies are using social in their core lines of business, turning to social tools that provide a greater level of integration with their mission critical business systems.

For example, McKirdy of Ask.com said the company once used a variety of social media monitoring and communication tools to identify and respond to issues. But now that Ask.com uses one social module in a cloud-based CRM system,

We monitor all major social media channels and can respond with the click of a mouse,”

says McKirdy.
While it is clear that each of the four technology megatrends has had a tremendous impact independently, the study finds that deploying integrated solutions is where the greatest impact is achieved.

The most important trends, the most interesting things, are happening at the intersections of these four different technologies,”

asserts Babson College’s Davenport.

Similarly, Horrom, of the Detroit Lions, says,

There’s less value to the Lions in having big data coming in if we don’t have a method of compute in the cloud or on premises to interact in real time with our fans via a mobile platform.”

The survey found the likelihood that organizations are being transformed to be significantly greater among those that deem multiple technologies to be critical.

Among “multi-adopters”— organizations that view at least three of the megatrends as playing a critical role in operations— more than two-thirds (67 percent) report they have transformed, compared to as few as onethird (34 percent) of single adopters.

Even dual-adopters (using two technologies in critical areas) are better poised to reap the benefits that sit at the nexus of these technology trends.
Most importantly, the innovation and improved agility described in the examples above are not simply a result of spending more on IT.

At this point in cloud, mobile, social media, and analytics development, C-level and senior line of business executives should be assessing the various business capabilities of their organizations and developing a strategy and a road map to improve and differentiate their core capabilities with these digital technologies.

The firms that take advantage of the new capabilities can not only transform themselves but also achieve success in the 21st century.

None of the changes enabled by these technologies comes without accompanying organizational changes—management mind-sets, organizational behavior, operating cultures,”

says Marchand of IMD.

Deep change over time coupled with these technologies is where transformation happens.


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Even though there is widespead acceptance, entrepreneurs often ask how to value the sweat equity invested in their startup. A quick and easy response:

It’s worth whatever your investors tell you it’s worth.”

But over the years, come to realize that sweat equity isn’t the same thing as market value for your startup.

“Investors have no idea how to value sweat equity, and I now believe it’s a bad idea to let them tell you how to do it.”

At a minimum, they could use this as a negotiating tool to undervalue your startup.When you’re getting started, sweat equity is often a critical component of your negotiating leverage with co-founders, early stage employees and others who aren’t paid market wages to help you grow your business.As the business owner, you should be the expert on valuing sweat equity, not your investors, accountants or lawyers. Here are some tools for tackling the challenge.When determining the value of the sweat equity provided by an employee or potential co-founder, first assess these three characteristics of the person in question:

  1. Commitment:Is he or she committed to being a founding partner for the long haul?
  2. Unique contribution:Does he or she bring specialized knowledge, skills, leadership ability or experiences that you don’t have?
  3. Hopes and dreams:Are his or her hopes and dreams for personal wealth, business success and autonomy the same as yours? If not, are the differences substantial enough that they’ll pull the company apart?

Then, start thinking about the numbers.
1. Market value doesn’t equal the sum of sweat equity invested by you and your partners.

If you have invested $100,000 worth of your time in writing a business plan, and your partner, a young engineering student, has invested $25,000 worth of her time in building a prototype, it doesn’t mean the market value of your startup is $125,000.

In fact, it could be worth much more. Sweat equity is just one component of early-stage valuation. In a previous column, I discussed how valuing a startup is more driven by market conditions, comparable companies, exit potential, future capital needs and many other factors.
2. Foregone wages for an engineer aren’t the same as foregone wages for a prototype designer.

In the example described above, the $25,000 estimated by your business partner is likely to be based on wages that she could have earned in a full-time job. This is the typical way that a founder determines sweat equity: foregone wages.

However, your partner could just as easily have argued that her sweat equity is worth $250,000 since that’s what a prototype would have cost you to make had you hired a prototype development firm. Or she could argue that the prototype is so critical to the business that she should get 50 percent of the company’s stock.
In my experience, this is the basis for much of the negotiation that CEOs will have with their early-stage employees and co-founder. You need to determine the principle applied for valuing services invested in a nascent business. Foregone wages tends to be the anchor that keeps valuation negotiations from sailing into oblivion.Don’t be tempted to dole out equity to everyone who helps you found the company–even it makes you feel good to have co-founders. (Being an entrepreneur is lonely, but there are better ways to make friends or build a community of credible supporters than by giving early-stage equity to people who make small contributions to your business.)
One simple solution is to “pay” a slight premium for sweat equity to early-stage employees. For example, when valuing the sweat equity invested by your prototype designer, use $30,000 rather than $25,000 as a valuation figure and explain that you’re paying a 20 percent premium because of the risks associated with being paid in equity rather than cash.
3. Employees and founders are motivated by different things.

How should you decide if your prototype designer should be a co-founder who deserves 50 percent of your company or deserves $30,000 in sweat equity for her work as an employee or consultant?

Too often, I see entrepreneurs make this critical decision by trusting the opinion of their investors–or potential investors-rather than determining what their business will actually need. First-time entrepreneurs often think,

“If I approach a VC with a chief technology officer or chief prototype designer in place, then I’m more likely to get funded.”

So they end up getting a co-founder and parting with 50 percent of their company, even if their CTO is really a young prototype designer who will get discouraged or fired a few months later. Using a restricted stock agreement, you can mitigate risk, building in a buy-back right for the partner’s equity grant.Ultimately, it’s up to you. You get to decide what you need to give up to keep or get an invaluable partner on board.

New Business Models

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Ecommerce is an area being watched closely by entrepreneurs and wantrepreneurs alike. New business models are constantly emerging, making this a competitive and constantly evolving field.
The apparel category is particularly exciting: The recently launched Amazon Prime Wardrobe, for instance, allows consumers to have clothing delivered to their door, after which they can try it out for seven days before deciding whether to keep it. They can send items back whenever they decide; they don’t even need to be home to have return packages picked up.
Taking inspiration from Amazon and other businesses, many apparel and accessory ecommerce companies are similarly trying their hand at “something new and different.”
These innovative companies are taking ecommerce to the next level.

Crisp Clothing
The perfect shirt is hard to come by. But what if perfect fit could be achieved with the help of two simple metrics? That’s what Crisp Clothing does. By using your height and weight and what it calls “3D Measuring,” Crisp Clothing can tailor the perfect shirt for you.
Founded by Swapnil and Prakash Kamble — a father-and-son team — Crisp Clothing uses 100 percent Egyptian Giza cotton to fashion its handmade tailored shirts, which are currently available in black, white, blue and pink. The company recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funding for the project.
Not surprisingly, the cost of a single shirt isn’t cheap, but pledging to the Crisp Clothing campaign at the $78 level will get you one custom, hand-crafted shirt.
What’s clearly innovative about Crisp Clothing is the approach it takes to crafting the perfect shirt. Technology is the difference. It gives Crisp Clothing a more scientific way to tailor shirts that look and feel great.

Trunk Club
The Nordstrom-owned Trunk Club may be a familiar name to some. Its business model is a lot like that of Amazon Prime Wardrobe, except Trunk Club has been around a lot longer.
This is its process: First, the customer is prompted to answer a few questions about the style of clothing he (or she) is interested in, how the clothing should fit and what budget range is desired. Then, he can chat with a stylist who’ll offer help on exactly what he’s looking for (though this step is not mandatory).
The trunk is delivered free of charge once the customer approves it, and he or she has five days to decide what clothing to keep and what to send back. Then, the customer can either reorder on his or her own schedule or set up a regular delivery schedule, to keep the wardrobe fresh.
What Trunk Club did right was make it easier for the consumer to get items that are truly desired. Time can be a commodity in today’s busy world, and with the rise of online shopping, consumers don’t necessarily go to malls or stores to shop anymore. Trunk Club is an easy, fast and convenient way for today’s buyer to meet his or her clothing needs.

Bonobos
Bonobos was launched because its founders recognized how difficult it is for consumers to find pants that fit perfectly. To solve this problem, Bonobos developed a signature curved waistband that fits more naturally around your waist. The company offers free shipping as well as painless returns and exchanges.
Bonobos also has something called a Guideshop. Customers can schedule a one-hour appointment at a Guideshop, try on anything in the store and find the perfect clothing with the help of a Guide. Customers don’t have to take any bags home, as the Guide will place the order and have it shipped to the customer’s home or office.
Bonobos is doing a couple of noteworthy things for its customers. First, it came up with a solution where none previously existed, thereby creating more comfortable pants. Second, it created a unique in-store experience that allows customers to find what they’re looking for on their own time — a personalized experience they’re sure to remember.

Wanderlust + Co
Accessorizing is a term near and dear to many women. Jenn Low, founder of Wanderlust + Co, creates custom jewelry and accessories that many models and celebrities don at notable events. Her work is inspired by what she calls the #WCOgirlgang, which includes celebrities, fashion bloggers, editors, stylists and content creators.
What’s innovative about Wunderlust + Co is Low’s willingness to cater to a specific audience. She doesn’t create products consumers dn’t want. She built her own tribe, #WCOgirlgang, and stays in regular contact with them to come up with new product ideas her audience will love.
Entrepreneurs sometimes take the opposite approach, creating a product first and then finding an audience for it. Sometimes that can work, but there are no guarantees. A more reliable approach, especially today, is what Low does: She’s built a brand around a target audience, offering products they want and have even asked for.

Everlane
Complete transparency is hard to find but has become somewhat trendier, thanks to online entrepreneurs like Pat Flynn and John Lee Dumas.
That’s where Everlane stands out. These founders aim to be as up-front as possible about the cost of their goods. They even offer a detailed breakdown on materials, hardware, labor, duties and transport. They also reveal what the true cost of the product is, in addition to what they’re selling it for.
If you’ve ever wondered where your money is going when you purchase a product, you won’t have to, with Everlane. You’ll get total transparency, and that builds trust. Though full transparency may not be the right approach for every business, it’s something to consider: Maybe no one in your industry is embracing it, making it worth considering as a strategy.

Final thoughts
If you’re an ecommerce business owner, what could you be doing to separate yourself from the pack? If you have a different business model, what can you learn from the above and implement in your business?
As ecommerce becomes increasingly competitive, it will be more and more necessary for more business owners to embrace innovation and find their unique approach. The ecommerce landscape will continue to be an interesting one to watch, especially as Amazon continues to launch new and noteworthy services.


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Old Business Models

blackboard-business-chalkboard-355988

Every industry is changing. There are no original ideas left. Sure, it’s kind of a cynical thought, but try and brainstorm a completely new concept, whether for a business, an advertising campaign or even a limerick, and you’ll start to think it’s true. It can sometimes be a stretch to come up with anything that hasn’t already been thought of. It’s the reason someone once famously said there are only three original jokes and all the others have been derived from them. It’s why Hollywood remakes old movies. And the dearth of original ideas is why businesspeople sometimes pay other businesspeople to come up with a new concept for their own products or services.

“Fortunately, if you’re an entrepreneur trying to come up with a new business model, you don’t have to be completely unique. “

For instance, you probably wouldn’t attempt to sell fingernail clippings in a bag, no matter how groundbreaking and unique the idea is. In fact, if you’re starting a business, you probably shouldn’t do something that’s never been done -after all, think of the learning curve your target market will have to tackle. But you would be well advised to take an old idea and make it new. That’s exactly what David Friedberg did. It was around 2001, Friedberg figures, when he was 20 years old and living across the road from a bicycle rental shop.
Every day that it rained, the bike shop was closed.

“It became pretty noticeable,”

recalls Friedberg, now 26 and already an ex-Google executive and the CEO of his own company, WeatherBill, in San Francisco.
After watching the bicycle rental store owner get rained out day after day, Friedberg started noticing how many other companies- think golf courses and car washes- were taking a financial bath whenever it was wet outside.

“You don’t really think about it, but 70 percent of businesses are affected by the weather every year, across regions and industries,”

says Friedman.

“The weather affects so many different types of businesses, whether in negative or in positive ways, like taxi cabs in New York, which are often full in the cold.”

Friedman was a business product manager at Google when he had his

“a-ha moment.”

It occurred to him that he should start an insurance company- a very old idea- but gear it specifically toward companies that want to protect themselves from losing money on a rainy day -a new idea. It may not sound new. After all, insurance companies generally protect you if you’re hammered by a hurricane, slaughtered by a sandstorm or frozen under the tundra. But we’re talking about the car wash that doesn’t want to lose an entire day of income when there are five inches of rain.

That’s why Friedberg developed, with his “computer science friends,” an elaborate website where anyone can log on and buy a contract to protect themselves from unseasonable weather. The site is completely customizable and automated. A farmer, for instance, could receive money every time the temperature dips below 67 degrees in a particular month. Or if a ski resort has a week and a half of beautiful, balmy weather in January, the owner could automatically receive a check without having to report the weather.

There is no claims process,”

Friedberg says proudly. Instead his company uses a third-party weather station, EarthStat, that independently confirms data and sends daily reports to WeatherBill, which then processes the checks and sends them out.

Modernizing the wheel in some business models it only needs to be slightly tweaked to appeal to the modern consumer. If you want to update the traditional dentist office, put it on wheels. While cleaning teeth is an industry almost as old as, well, teeth, putting an office in a van that can travel anywhere from giant corporate campuses to nursing homes is a much more recent concept. The rise of mobile dentist offices in the last few years shows that catering to people’s busy and complicated lives is a nearly surefire way to improve upon an old concept.
Then there’s the Pearson Ford Fuel Depot in San Diego, which has received a lot of attention for its one-of-a-kind gas station that offers a full range of clean-burning alternative fuels from ethanol to BioWillie, a type of biodiesel made from soybeans and promoted by singer Willie Nelson. Gas stations may be becoming synonymous with global warming, but by offering an alternative, this fueling station has managed to drum up publicity while serving an emerging niche market. Capitalizing on consumers’ nostalgia is yet another potential approach. In true throwback fashion, State Street Barbers, located in Chicago and Boston, gives modern hair cuts to men in an environment decked out to look like a ritzy salon in the 1920s. Patrons are given a cold beverage when they walk in and can get a hot lather shave with a classic straight razor and hot towels.
In the end, it’s easier to be original and unique in an established industry like home selling or insurance when you have plenty of capital funding behind you; it’s another story if you’re running a fledgling startup in your parents’ basement, and you feel you have to take any client with a pulse and a wallet. But whether you’re a big fish in the ocean or a small one in the pond, the principles are always the same. If you’re going to tweak a formula,

throw out the way things have been done before,”

advises Friedberg.

Manufacturers wants more to connect with their suppliers, their distributors, and ultimate their customers. In a consumer world there is an app for that, in the government world there is form for that and that is the technology that needs to be closed. Banks knows a lot about the customers and that information is spread to the full wings.
The reason why most of the companies are not embracing the future faster, is because they continue to throw their capital to what they worked in the past and that’s what is keeping manufacturers up at night, is how to innovate quickly with agility, and deepen their relationships with their retailers, suppliers and consumers.

Figure out your end goal, and then forget about what all of the other people have done, and come up with a new way.



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Technical and fundamental analysis in the efficient market hypothesis suggests that future share prices cannot be predicted by studying past prices. As we have seen, there is extensive evidence to support this view and the right information in collaborating with your partners.

Despite the evidence, investment strategies based on the study of past share prices, or on the analysis of published information such as annual accounts, are common, and the view held by many financial analysts seems to be therefore that capital markets are inefficient.

“Technical analysis involves the use of charts (Chartism) and other methods to predict future shares prices and share price trends, clearly implying that a relationship exists between past and future prices. “

For technical analysis to lead to abnormal returns on a regular basis, capital markets cannot even be weak form efficient.

“Fundamental analysis are public information to calculate a fundamental value for a share and then offer investment advice by comparing the fundamental value with the current market price.”

It is not possible to make abnomal gains from fundamental analysis if capital markets are semi-strong form efficient, since all publicly available information will already be reflected in share prices.

Both technical and fundamental analysis, by seeking abnormal returns, increase the speed with which share prices absorb new information and reach equilibrium, thereby preventing abnomal returns from being achieved.


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