Monday, December 25, 2017

Thursday, November 09, 2017

Cluster of Idea Space

The education of the incremental innovator leads to mastery of the already available paths of scientific knowledge and methods.......William Baumol

With concepts like Big Data, Block Chain and IOT, most businesses are now confronted with the leap from “dumb" products into creating smart, connected products.

Breakthrough inventiveness requires unorthodox approach to education that favors the exercise of the imagination.A world of education spanning geographical barriers resulting in exchange of ideas between students, professors and entrepreneurs.

A mix of in-company training and formal training within a climate of interactive spaces for knowledge creation, dissemination and innovation.

These interactions morphe into clusters:
Businesses have clustered into networks throughout history, but today we refer to business clusters like the technology industry in Silicon Valley, the financial sector in London and automakers in southern Germany.

Business clustering is an organic process involving a self-organized, self-sustaining, and self-reinforcing formation of interconnected businesses

Vibrant cities rely on clusters that can adapt; and cluster adaptability in turn hinges on an “idea space”
An idea space for a handful of skilled individuals, local entrepreneurs recycled with academic excellence.

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Saturday, October 07, 2017

Growth in a Digital Landmine

Error moves with quick feet and truth must never be lagging behind........ Anonymous

Digital transformation is not just about technology. The approach a company adopts to communicates with its employees, organizes them, and reskills them will play a fundamental role in its ability to take advantage of the new consumer landscape.

Plug-and-play e-commerce technology, search engine optimization, big data, block chain and other distribution solutions are making it far easier for products to directly reach consumers.

Some compaanies like:
Coca-Cola recently reshuffled its leadership team to focus on growth, innovation, and digital by enabling them to build digital road maps for their regions and businesses
Unilever just acquired Dollar Shave Club (for digital subcription sales)

L’OrĂ©al invested in Founders Factory (for digital startup accelerator)

Kassir Hussain of Connected Home observed that “In a space that can often be confusing and frustrating to consumers, our focus on regular user interviews, meetings,tests, and demos allowed us to build a product that was simple, easy to use, and addressed real consumer needs.”

We must continuously invest in periodic upskilling initiatives in a range of learning experiences to grow in the digital age.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Invest in People

A young man is a theory; an old man is a fact......... Edgar Watson Howe

It’s not money that’s in short supply; it’s good growth ideas.
Who has these inspirational ideas that we translates into productivity-driving innovations?

People do.
Reinvesting in people could unlock new levels of labor productivity for cities and companies around the world

An inspired employee is twice as productive as a satisfied one
The average, manager has less than seven hours per week of uninterrupted time for deep reflection.
They spend the rest of their time attending meetings, sending e-communications that lead to employee burnout

Companies should seek to systematically eradicate organizational drag — all the internal complexity that leadsto inefficient and ineffective interactions. Leaving managers more time for deep thinking that unlocks innovation with significant impact on productivity.

For instance Toyota Production System use Kaizen events to improve productivity on the manufacturing line.
They pull workers off the line while giving them time and space to make processes
leaner and to devise innovative work methods

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Monday, August 07, 2017

The Ultimate Sale

The shrewd guess, the fertile hypothesis, the courageous leap to a tentative conclusion
– these are the most valuable coin of the thinker at work...... Jerome S. Bruner

Buyers amass information that helps them justify their strategic decisions, with a soft close you can win the ultamate sale.
A soft close can based on a suggestion that leads a buyer into believing they are acting of their own free will, when in fact they have been directed to follow an action.

A soft close technique like “If you spend another $Y, you will receive an additional X% off the entire order” can give you the winning sale.

Why Sales Win
The strategic values for buyers include :
1) Increasing revenues
2) Decreasing costs
3) Gaining a competitive advantage
4) Standardizing operations in order to reduce risk

Why Sales Fail
1) You can’t clearly explain how your solution helps the buyer’s business
2) You are too self-centered
3) You don’t alleviate the risk of buying your solution
4) You can’t establish a personal connection with the buyer

Make the Ultimate Sales

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Saturday, July 01, 2017

The Green of Business Health

We are collectively suffering from “nature-deficit disorder,” which hurts us mentally, physically, and even spiritually......Richard Louv

Research suggests that investing in landscaping our domain with plants will pay off through an increase quality of life and productivity

Corporations can significantly reduce organizational health costs by introducing more green spaces and plants into an office space. Adding a little wilderness to your environment may just be the smartest move you can do this year.

Corporations like Google prioritize biophilia as a core design principle with these interventions you can reduce everyday stress and also boost general health

Taking walks in nature lowers anxiety and depression while boosting total well-being
Even a very small exposure to nature – as little as five minutes – can produce dramatic benefits, especially when coupled with exercise like walking or running

Ways to go Greener:
Encourage walking meetings outside.
Encourage naturally lit areas for breaks and lunch.
Create an indoor garden or a vertical “green wall.”
Move your creative space closer to a park or natural environment.
Display nature photography or artwork.
Play nature videos on your display screens

Go green, improve your creativity, health and reduce your ecological footprint..

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Friday, June 02, 2017

Business Growth and Transformation

Our energy is in proportion to the resistance it meets.......... William Hazlitt

Business transformation requires repositioning the core business while actively investing in the new growth business.

Transformation is not just about changing an enterprise’s cost structure or turning analog processes into digital ones. Rather, it’s about pursuing a multiphase strategy to reposition today’s business while finding new ways to grow

An organization that grew up producing newspapers, for instance, may not only lacks key skills to build a digital content company but may also actively resist embracing the digital model in order to protect the business it knows.

When Netflix announced plans in 2011 to create a stand-alone mail-based DVD company called Qwikster. This prompted a backlash from angry customers and employees — which triggered a humbling apology from Hastings the CEO.

He reformulated his plan, this time to extend the life of the core DVD business while aggressively rolling out the new streaming service in parallel.

It proved to be a winning strategy that funded the business growth into digital content.
Now, with membership of 100 million homes in 190 countries, Netflix is the leader in the movie and television landscape.

By imposing economic discipline, ruthlessly prioritizing, segmentation, retention, and monetization, business transformation assures investors of continous profitability.

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Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Reflective Urgency

Sometimes you have to look reality in the eye and deny it..... Garrison Keilor

Reflective Urgency — the ability to bring conscious, rapid reflection to the
priorities of the moment and to align your best thinking with the swiftest course of action

A Classic Scenerio:
Sarah was a new manager struggling to adjust to the pressures of delivering on her work, while keeping the team accountable for theirs.
Trying to get it all done without any drop in performance, her urgency trap was a shift
to extreme command-and-control.
In her words, “Everything felt like an urgent crisis, so I acted like it was.”
This mindset triggered reactions that consumed her in delegated work while communicating harshly to her bottom-line in every email, one-on-one conversation, and team discussion.
The result was that her team felt micromanaged and less engaged in their contributions.
She failed to deepen relationships and establish trust within the team.

Diagnose your Urgency Trap:
You need to identify what’s limiting your quality thinking time — when you feel the pressure of too many demands.

Common Urgency Traps:
Ending one meeting prematurely, only to rush to the next one with more unfinished business;
Multitasking work that requires your complete presence and attention, which only diminishes accuracy and output quality;
Saying yes to projects that dilute your contribution and burn your energy, when a No is the wiser choice.
The pressure of impossible deadlines

Here is a Task for you:
"How much growth do you need to avoid becoming a marginal player in your industry as your market grows?"
"How do you optimize your acquisition spending for maximum value rather than minimum cost?”

If you’re too quick to react, you can end up with short-sighted decisions, neglecting underlying causes while creating collateral damage.
If you’re too slow to respond, you can potentially miss an opportunity while allowing the challenge to consume you.-----Jesse Sostrin, PwC’s Leadership Coaching Center of Excellence.

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Saturday, April 01, 2017

Project Failures

The numbers tell you how your business is going, not why........ Jonathan P. Siegel

Wanda Holbrook was a maintenance technician, she was trapped by robotic machinery and killed.

Wanda Holbrook’s job was to inspect and adjust the process on the assembly line at Ventra, which makes bumpers and trailer hitches

The robot loaded hardware onto Holbrook’s head and crushed her skull

The lawsuit says “The robot from section 130 should have never entered section 140, and should never have attempted to load a hitch assembly".

Holbrook family says "the robots were not properly designed, manufactured or tested and hence, unfit for use.”
The case is currently awaiting trial.

Project failure is rampant across all sectors, industries and fields:
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers reviewed 10,640 projects from 200 companies in 30 countries and across various industries, and found that only 2.5% successfully completed 100% of their projects.
  • McKinsey & Company studied over 5000 projects and found that 56% delivered less value than expected, 45% were over budget, and 17% unfolded so badly that they threatened the company’s very survival.

Business innovation, growth and profitability is directly dependent on completion of successful projects.
Avoid these five common causes of project failures:
Lack of Visibility
Lack of Communication
Lack of Technology
Lack of Resource Management
Lack of Project Culture

The aim of science is not to open the door to infinite wisdom but to set a limit to infinite error.......... Bertolt Brech

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Investing in Digital Currencies

Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought .... John F. Kennedy

A new decentralized global financial system is possible with cryptocurrencies by removing layers of intermediation.
Every major financial institution in the world is doing blockchain research at the moment and 15% of banks are expected to be using blockchain in 2017.

Blockchain is a distributed database that maintains a continuously growing list of ordered records, called “blocks.”
The first major blockchain innovation was bitcoin, a digital currency experiment in 2007 .
The market cap of bitcoin now hovers between $10–$20 billion dollars, and is used by millions of people for payments.
Blockchain has remained resilient to attack and it supports a robust payment system.

Cosider just 10 years of work by an elite group of computer scientists, cryptographers and mathematicians:

  • A higher degree of reliability than the current system
  • International currency transfers will go from days to a few minutes
  • Auctions can now be universal and global
  • A scaled blockchain is expected to be fast enough to power the internet of things
  • Go head-to-head with the major payment middlemen (VISA and SWIFT) of the banking world.

With these suddden changes to existing business models and e-commerce, blockchain will disrupt the financial system much
like what the internet did to media and adevertising. Such a fundamental restructuring of a core part of the economy is a big challenge to all.
Preparing for these changes means investing and experimentation.
Those who do so will be well placed to thrive in the new, emerging financial system.

While Investing in Digital Currencies, Reflect on these three Propositons:
 1. Globalization is a major driver of growth and prosperity
 2. Technological progress enriches our lives
 3. Shareholder returns reflect businesses contributions to society

Crafty men condemn studies, simple men admire them, and wise men use them.... Francis Bacon

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Sunday, March 05, 2017

Tax the Robots

"There will be fewer and fewer jobs that a robot cannot do better."-------Elon Musk

23% of routine jobs have largely been replaced by robotics and automation,
robotic production lines like Tesla’s will continue to eat away at manufacturing jobs.

This is just the beginning of the disruption;

There are now more robots on the internet searching for news an updates than humans

Robots are now taking over a range of jobs from security to checkout clerks.

At one restaurant in China, you can order a bowl of noodles made entirely by robots.

Japanese life insurer Fukoku Mutual replaced 34 insurance claim workers with IBM Watson Explorer software

Self-driving cars and drones will be able to pay for services (charging pods) with block chain 

There are just a lot of things that machines can do better than human beings;Jobs like teacher, doctor,
financial advisor, stockbroker, marketer, and business consultant.

Doctors and Consultants will never be able to keep up with every new publication in their areas of expertise.  Instead, they must rely on a small number of personal experiences rather than the complete knowledge in their field.

Humans can’t just plug in more servers when we reach our limits of processing new information

Many skilled jobs follow the same general workflow that robots perform better:
Gather data
Analyze the data
Interpret the results
Determine a recommended course of action
Implement the course of action

There is a social cost:
The avarage human with an income of $45,000.00 will pay income tax, pay social security tax, pay for services at the grocery store, restaurants, school, clinics, banks and run a family.

With the jobs gone, the entire social fabric is at risk.

Casting the blame of job losses on migration and globalisation is for small minds. These families are barely making enough to survive.

Plugin and Tax the Robots.

A powerful idea communicates some of its power to the man who contradicts it........... Marcel Prous

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Friday, February 03, 2017

Unconventional Business Thinking

 The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.
We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.... —Albert Einstein

Everything you want, and everything you need is somewhere in the world around you. And it’s closer
than you think. All you have to do is develop the ability to sense it, feel it, see it, and hear it.
But first, you have to believe it. Belief gives birth to passion. Passion gives birth to action.

If you’re shooting at Eagles, don’t focus on where the Eagle is now. Focus on where it is going to be.

Great entrepreneurs and innovators resist “success as usual” syndrome, They try to keep the big picture in mind and are wary of being too efficient and too optimized. This perspective helps them promote unconventional ways of thinking, solving problems, and challenging the status quo.

They know the goal is not to chase a fixed horizon but to understand when and how the horizon moves as they approach it.

For example, if you bet one dollar that the coin will fall on heads, your odds of winning are 50/50.
But if we happen to win 6 times in a row on head, we subconsciously believe that the odds of the coin landing on heads the seventh time are mysteriously in our favor. But they are not. The odds of the coin landing on heads are still only 50/50.

But most of us would optimise and bet all our dollars on the 7th flip; that’s when we lose it all.
We have rationally defined the odds; Our perception of the risk has become skewed by our most recent string of success.

Every time you define something, you subtract from it.......Herb kelleher

Each time you start a new business the odds are againts you, no matter your past success, the odds are still againts you, the odds does not change.

Step forward with instinct and caution each time

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Becoming an Entrepreneur with MIT

Learn the business skills and startup mindset you need to excel

About this course  

Curious about entrepreneurship, but not sure where to start? Learn from MIT’s premier program for aspiring entrepreneurs, MIT Launch.
Becoming an Entrepreneur is an innovation and business course designed for aspiring entrepreneurs who want to explore an entrepreneurial path and overcome some of the initial challenges in taking those first steps.
From developing new business ideas and doing market research to entrepreneurial strategy and pitching, this course follows MIT’s successful approach to entrepreneurship. There will be a combination of short videos, thought-provoking case studies, and activities that will challenge you to get you away from your computer screen and into the community to make a real impact.
No previous business or entrepreneurship experience needed. Join us to embark on your entrepreneurial journey.

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  • Overcoming the top hurdles to starting a company
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