Every retailer wants to know which products attract shoppers. Sophisticated technology that helps business owners get a window into the minds of customers.
Corporate & Business Strategy Planning / Execution in the Post Industrial, Digital Economy. Want to know more? Visit me on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/karlwabst/
Curated by Karl Wabst
People make strategy much harder than it needs to be. For some, the problem is that they focus too much on the tools: environmental scans, SWOT analyses, customer analyses, competitor analyses, financial modeling, and so on. Other people get into trouble because they think it’s all about the broad, conceptual, future-oriented, big picture stuff — […]
First, understand the questions and then read Playing to Win
Gaining a competitive edge is often the result of being first-to-market, and often, early success is an outlier that is not sustainable over time....
If you want engaged employees, you both have to commit to the relationship. If it is just a job, and they are just another employee expect many unfulfilling first dates.
Your customers will figure it out and keep their options open too.
Yes, you can always get new employees and new customers. Studies and experience show that new ones are always more expensive.
Creating a company that has impact takes more than just hitting on the right product or service for the right market. It requires designing the total venture, including the business model, the organization and culture, and the business-management systems that will allow it to add value to the overall economy by growing and creating jobs as well as profits, says Charles Holloway, professor emeritus at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
In today's marketplace, you are unlikely to have a unique product or service. There is much more to creating and running a business for the long haul. What makes you special?
The privately funded space company backed by Amazon.com Inc. founder and chief executive Jeff Bezos announced a historic coup with a test flight of a fully reusable rocket, which could usher in a new era for space transportation.
Competition makes for faster advances in the space industry. The government continues to be the largest consumer. As such, it still has a role to play in regulation of safety issues. Where will this lead? It leads us into the future.
Bezos Interview & Video
Leaders — especially those in large, successful organizations — must create an environment where people thrive on passion and purpose, and are as agile and innovative as their potential disruptors.
Do not wait until the company is broke to fix it.
To transform, we have to move beyond managing change. We have to learn to lead.
Beyond Change Management, and The Change Leader's Roadmap: How to Navigate Your Organization's Transformation. Two Book Set
Books by John Kotter
Husband to photographer who airbrushed wife: You 'took away everything that makes up our life'
The perfect holiday gift one man gave his wife. Real love and desire are hard to find. Do you know your customer well enough to give them something as authentic?
The term “disruptive innovation” is misleading. Unfortunately, disruption theory is in danger of becoming a victim of its own success.
A company can be innovative without being disruptive. Disruption is a business strategy not merely a product or service. For an example, look at Uber.
Disruption creates new customers where none existed. Disruption expands the market and avoids head-to-head competition with a strong, entrenched brand.
Innovation serves existing customers better. I am not implying this is bad. Understanding the meaning helps a company and people to create a strategy that makes sense for them.
Are you either disruptive or innovative? Or, are you just another player?
Apple's biggest spenders are men 65 and older, according to Slice Intelligence.
If you assume that Apple's biggest buyers are kids, you may want to think twice. Technology is not just for kids anymore. How should you change your marketing?
More Ad Blocking stories
IAB To Advertisers and Content Providers: 'We Messed Up'
Fact: Mobile ads consume up to 50% of the data Mobile Subscribers pay for
IAB Explores Its Options to Fight Ad Blockers, Including Lawsuits
Let's Not Place All Our Eggs in the Do Not Track Basket
One of the biggest frustrations when working across cultures is a different sense of urgency, follow-through, and deadlines. Whatever your relationship with time, here are some guidelines to address this challenge.
A sense of urgency means different things to different people in different parts of the world. You are likely to fail if you do not understand this.
A lack of communication is one of the major causes of change failure.
This idea seems false to those who remember having to choose between only three TV channels and one or two radio stations.
You know the type I mean. We are talking about those old people that are still in charge of many large organizations today. To be fair, this was the case not so long ago in many American communities.
Once you accept that, stop and think about the level of change seen in what we in the US call emerging markets. We do business; hire employees and market to consumers who see our limited choices as an embarrassment of riches.
There has been a global revolution in communications over the last quarter century. Now there is a constant proliferation of communications channels. Each channel pushes out rivers of data. It seems that all we do nowadays is communicate!
If you limit your understanding of communication to the imparting of news or information to an audience, you may be correct.
The traditional type of corporate communication had been a one-way push of instructions out to a passive audience. Today, both employees and customers expect more of a conversation.
Both or even multiple parties use a shared channel to talk, listen and effect outcomes. Many experienced managers fail to understand why this is the case. You may not like it, but you will be more effective when you sell how your customers want to buy.
When your message is competing with many others each pushed at audiences spread over many channels, you have to market your message so that people listen and connect with your message.
You need to repeat your message to reach audiences who listen at different times. To be understood, you should expect to say it in different ways. Consider rephrasing it in ways that matter to as many different, unique audiences as you want to reach.
The purpose is not simply to push out a message, but to create a shared vision of the future. A shared vision means that your vision may have to be adapted. Your customers have more choices than ever. They can find someone, from somewhere you would not have considered a threat 5 years ago, and who will make a case that makes sense to them.
Organizational change presents as many opportunities as potential problems. In those companies that do manage to push out stories about change initiatives, the problem is that they push information out at the audience.
Today, audiences are used to being able to talk back. They are looking to participate in a real way, not to be a passive receptacle expected to hear and obey. They old-school military model of "I say jump" and employees reply "How high, Sir?" are long gone.
Your employees have more effect on daily operations than ever. They are the ones talking to and hearing from customers every day. They have a presence on social media. They are talking about your company. Help them understand so they can advocate or at least, not misinform their audiences.
If management has made even marginally effective hiring decisions, your employees are bound to have some good ideas. Stop talking at them. Listen to them. Communicate. Communicate. After you do that, you guessed it, communicate. If the conversation is not bi-directional, you have already failed.
If we believe the oft-quoted 70% failure rate of change initiatives, you must be in the majority. I learned to differentiate myself by succeeding where many fail. Try it. You will like it! So will your employees and customers.
Communicating a Vision for Change (Video 4:17)
Most Change Initiatives Fail -- But They Don't Have To
IBM Institute for Business Value
Making change work …while the work keeps changing
The business of protecting against computer hacking is booming.
The problem is not bad security practices. The problem is bad business management.
If you walk through Accounting, are hundred dollar bills stacked up on the desks? Of course not you say! That would be stupid! Perhaps all of those bills are stacked in an unlocked closet. How stupid do I think you are? You keep your cash in a bank, in a big vault with armed guards.
Now, walk around many departments and you will find customer lists, unlocked laptops and smartphones. Look on the network, and you will find loads of unencrypted data. People do not think twice about walking around without a password. Most companies barely pay attention to user training. Now, how stupid is that? Data is the same as cash.
You say that maybe half of your company data is important. The problem is that you cannot say which half, where it is stored or how it moves in to, around and out of your company.
Is it any wonder that hackers steal from you? Resource protection is not a computer security problem. It continues to be a business opportunity! Stop leaving money on the table!
October 1, the deadline for credit card companies and retailers in the U.S. to make the switch to the new EMV chip standard and replace the old magnetic strip on credit cards, has come and gone. But according to Forbes, nearly 60 percent of consumers have yet to receive their new upgraded credit cards, nearly 70 percent haven't gotten any information at all about the new chip technology, and those who have received the chip-enabled cards have no idea what the change is all about.
The reason for this failure is no mystery. The payments industry is a victim of its own success.
Ask cashiers you interact with about the EMV credit card rollout and you are likely to get a blank stare. Ask your friends. Few know or care about EMV credit cards.
This is what happens when the people who are most effected by a change have not been sold on the advantages for them. Without awareness, there is no desire to participate. With no awareness or desire, no one is willing to spend time or money to gain the knowledge to make the change.
American consumers are immune to large amounts of monetary risk from credit card fraud. Most consumers have been assured that they are only responsible for $50 of responsibility for unauthorized charges. Some card issuers have policies that mean zero liability.
Merchants are shielded from the consequences of irate consumers by the PCI compliance standard. Consumers have no idea who non-compliant merchants are. Consumers often cannot even find out which merchant is responsible for a data breach.
This is a cultural issue. Right now, consumers do not care much. They were conditioned not to worry about it. If the industry really wants merchants to pay attention, they need to awaken the sleeping giant that is the American consumer.
If you are faced with a crisis at work, these tips will help you make the best, not the worst, of a bad situation.
The ability to lead in times of crisis, rather than practicing crisis management, is a vital skill in today's volatile world. Think about the long-term effect, not the strong desire to get back to normal. Good things can come from bad events.
Company directors are getting more involved in a range of technology issues, focusing on the long-term strategic value of IT investments and risk mitigation.
I believe that Board involvement in oversight of IT strategy is a positive trend.
Two questions came to mind.
ibm will acquire the weather company's b-to-b data services and digital properties.
When IBM says they know the cloud, they have the data to back it up.
lowe's innovation labs and made in space have partnered to bring the first 3-d printer to the international space station, 400 kilometers above earth.
Lowes in Space! Coming soon to a space station near you!
for every $3 spent, $1 is going to ad fraud, according to a new report.
It turns out that selling products and services to real people is still the best way to make a profit. Go figure!
Analytics shortcuts cost more than many companies realize. You can have it cheap, fast or good. You can still pick any two.
If you are taking shortcuts, you accept the $18.5 Billion loss as a cost of doing business. Fast and Cheap process costs money.
Surviving a corporate reorg can be tough. There is often a lot of confusion and uncertainty, and if colleagues were laid off, people might also be sad or angry. How can you make the situation easier for yourself and your colleagues? What steps should you take to protect your job? How do you stay positive? And how do you know when it’s time to move on?
In today's volatile workplace, they who maintain their mental and physical health live to fight another day. It may be in a new position, or at another company. It is your responsibility to evaluate the situation, and to be prepared to go through the change process. This article has some reasonable advice for charting that course.
Managers, you should also pay attention to workplace health. You may ask, Why, what is in it for me?
It is in the company’s best interest to have engaged employees. Employees look to their supervisors to set the tone and for news about how the new environment affects them. Create a new environment that rewards healthy adaptation to change.
Actively encourage employees to take actions that help them avoid the post-battle depression. Recognize it has been a long difficult fight.
There is no one right way for employees to bounce back, so managers should not require one thing over another. Create the space. Watch for signs of activities that employees engage in. Encourage and provide space for healing activities.
Recognize that the reorganization is not over until employees decide to stay on or to go. There are actions that each employee must consider on their own and with their families. That includes you too. Employees and their families are still watching and waiting to see how you execute the new strategy. Do not expect employees to "just be happy that they still have a job."
People are complex. Underestimate their feelings, and you will prolong the adjustment period, increase the anxiety and interfere with productivity. Why make things harder on yourself?
If you want more information about what a manager can do to help employees manage change, try these resources.
Free webinars on change management
Change Management Guide for Managers
Employee's Survival Guide to Change:
The complete guide to surviving and thriving during organizational change
Change Management: The People Side of Change
"We build advertising technology to optimize publishers' yield of marketing budgets that had eroded after the last recession," Mr. Cunningham said. "Looking back now, our scraping of dimes may have cost us dollars in consumer loyalty."
Congratulations IAB! Realizing that doing the same things that were done for generations, only harder, has alienated consumers is a breakthrough in the entrenched advertising culture.
Anyone that ever took an advertising, marketing or public speaking class was admonished to listen to their audience. Give them relevant messages and they will consume your message, products and services.
It turns out that Listening and Hearing are two distinctly different processes. We know you have been watching and listening to everything we do. It creeps us out! Can you hear us now?
Consumers have found their voice, and they are not waiting around to be impressed. They have been actively ignoring in-your-face advertising for years.
The real questions now are:
Getting LEAN with Digital Ad UX
Ad Blocking: What you need to know
– Learned about the existence of ad blocking technology
– Their computer became infected with a virus
– To protect devices against viruses
– To increase computer performance
– A general dislike of advertising
– Distracting ads
– If unable to view online content unless the feature is disabled
– If the site looks trustworthy
– To get the ad experience
The IAB Introduces L.E.A.N. Ads Program In Response To Ad Blocking
The group has introduced the L.E.A.N. Ads program to address the reasons consumers turn to ad blocking.
How the IAB plans to fight ad blocking
Online advertisers admit they “messed up,” promise lighter ads
Introduce "L.E.A.N. ads" in response to user hatred.
What is this nonsense? Why does it matter to you and your business?
According to this theory, a high need for closure can lead us to jump to conclusions, deny contradictions, revert to stereotypes, and place more trust in our own social groups.
In a world that is more volatile and more uncertain, a high need for closure may make us less creative problem solvers. If your world seems more complex and ambiguous, it may pay to understand that how you think can make a difference.
Take this 15-Q quiz to find out how comfortable you are with ambiguity! http://jamieholmesbooks.com/nonsense-quiz
Hell has no fury like the FTC and a ticked off blogging community. Learn from these history lessons. In one case, retribution took over 50 years and played a part in the sale of the offender.
If you want to be an effective leader, a number of skills will help you on your path to success. It’s important to focus on and develop these skills if you want to lead change within your institution or in the world.
To change other minds, it is likely that you will have to change yourself first.
Without doubt, Tuesday’s historic decision by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) invalidating the EU-U.S. Safe Harbor Agreement has ruffled a lot of feathers in the business community, while reenergizing privacy advocates in the EU and abroad.
The path ahead remains unclear. Many consider this ruling as an opening statement by the EU in renegotiating an agreement with the United States.
US participants should remember that the EU sees privacy is a serious matter, not as an inconvenience or radical agenda. I suspect that if Americans experienced the breach of privacy and trust as the Europeans did in WWII, we would be more sympathetic.
In the meantime, Binding Corporate Rules (BCRs) and Model Contract Clauses are expensive options. Both options take considerable time and money to put into place and both have to be approved by the European Commission.
Stay tuned as this story develops. Until then, here are more resources on this topic.
Legal Harbor for US-EU Data Transfer No Longer Safe
Press conference. Frans TIMMERMANS, First Vice-President of the EC in charge of Better Regulation, Inter-Institutional Relations, the Rule of Law and the Charter of Fundamental Rights
Statement from FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez Regarding the European Court of Justice Safe Harbor Framework Decision
EU High Court Invalidates Safe Harbor Framework for Cross-Border Data Transfers
U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Invalidated: What Next?
Are You Ready for Binding Corporate Rules?
European Commission Article 29 Working Party
Working Paper 153 for Data Controllers: Working Document setting up a table with the elements and principles to be found in Binding Corporate Rules http://ec.europa.eu/justice/policies/privacy/docs/wpdocs/2008/wp153_en.pdf
Working Paper 195 for Data Processors: Working Document 02/2012 setting up a table with the elements and principles to be found in Processor Binding Corporate Rules http://ec.europa.eu/justice/data-protection/article-29/documentation/opinion-recommendation/files/2012/wp195_en.pdf
Becoming a digital organization requires fundamentally changing how you do business. Answering these nine questions can help break through the inevitable barriers. A McKinsey & Company article.
Answer the nine questions in this article after you can communicate your strategy.
To do that, your leadership should answer these five questions.
Know why you are going before you start. Ask your customers and listen to their answers first. Add value. Your shareholders will thank you.