What do the Dodge Dart Registry, Facebook, Old Spice deodorant, and Restoration Hardware have to do with the future of banking? All four contain seeds of a strategic innovation urgently needed in that industry: lowering the cost of retail distribution while improving the customer experience for an increasingly complex range of consumers (from old to young, urban to rural, wealthy to poor, tech savvy to technophobic, and so on).
We’ll explain more below, but for the moment, let’s focus on the bigger picture: Challenges as daunting as the one faced by bankers exist in almost every industry, owing to the new competitive forces and profitability pressures unleashed by globalization, digitization, and postrecession anemia. It’s why most executives are seeking more strategic innovation from their organizations. They want ideas that are big and proven. True strategic challenges will not be conquered with incremental solutions, and corporate life is already too risky to bet on a big idea that may or may not work.
Which brings us to the question of the day: Where do big, practical ideas come from?Read More
This piece by David Korten is absolutely spot on and brings forward many interesting questions and ideas for what a new world away from one so reliant on financial and monetary measurement would look like.Read More
This article by Paul Bridle just goes to show how the “banking system” is what is rotten, and regrettably when you join a bank, you have to play the system! I guess the same goes for any big organization – or medium sized for that matter: the measurements put in place by the leaders are ultimately what gets done by the employees. For some organizations it is an emphasis on values, culture and ethos, whilst it sadly appears that for others, (big banks and multinational corporations) the emphasis is solely on ‘making money at all costs!’ If you are working or participating in society or business today, you have got to understand the system ( read: culture , ethics, purpose, values etc ) and the way things are done, and what is measured, so that you can align it with your own sense of purpose and values.Read More
An insightful article by Sandra Ordonez about how business schools in the US have experienced seismic shifts and are continuing to do so. Fueled by technology, the global financial crisis, cultural shifts, and the introduction of Gen Y into the business world, these drivers are causing new and dynamic business school trends which are worth watching in the coming years ahead…
These developments have been fueled by technology, the global financial crisis, cultural shifts, and the introduction of Gen Y into the business world. Traditional MBAs, which have usually focused on accounting and finance, have a hard time producing the type of business leaders companies are currently looking for. Specifically, companies want ethical problem solvers with strong digital and entrepreneurial skills, who are team players and work well in diverse environments. Yet, a 2008 study of top business schools found that curricula lacked valued “thematic elements” such as soft skills, information technology, globalization and corporate and social responsibility.
This may be why in 2009 the MBA Roundtable in conjunction with Percept Research found that 69% of business schools surveyed had already made significant changes to their curriculum, and 89% had changes planned. Last year, prestigious universities like Harvard University and the Wharton School announced major curriculum overhauls that, for many, were a milestone. Here’s how the other major trends in this space are playing out.
The below information and video was recently put together by global logistics giant DHL at the launch of their major study into the future and the role of logistics in the world 2050. DHL put together 5 scenarios for what the future of the world could look like in 2050. They have a dedicated website for their study: www.delivering-tomorrow.com. The full 182-page scenario write up can be downloaded as a PDF here, download the five page summary here or read the launch press release (and download the free resources).
The 5 Scenarios are:
1: Untamed Economy – Impending Collapse (this is the current world continued for another four decades, as we use up our natural resources and mess up the planet)
2. Megaefficiency in Megacities (this is a grand vision for “green” cities and a nearly completely urbanised world)
3. Customized Lifestyles (individualization and personalized consumption are pervasive – a technology driven vision of the future)
4. Paralyzing Protectionism (globalisation collapses, war and decay dominate)
5. Global Resilience – Local Adaptation (a scenario dominated by climate related changes, where mitigating vulnerability is the primary driver)
Reimagining Capitalism—as Principled, Patient, and Truly Social
By: Gary Hamel and Polly LaBarre
While the global financial meltdown and its aftershocks have unleashed a flood of indignation, condemnation, and protest upon Wall Street, the crisis has exposed a deeper distrust and implacable resentment of capitalism itself.
Capitalism might be the greatest engine of prosperity and progress ever devised, but in recent years, individuals and communities have grown increasingly disgruntled with the implicit contract that governs the rights and responsibilities of business. The global economy and the Internet have heightened our sense of interconnectedness and sharpened our awareness that when a business focuses only on enriching investors, managers view the interests of customers, employees, communities—and the fate of the planet—as little more than cost trade-offs in a quarter-by-quarter game.Read More
This is a superb analysis of the future world of work and what skills will be needed in the future by Jessica Stillman. How many of these skills do you think you have; how many do you think warrant actually being included and do you think she has left any other skills out? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.
What are the jobs of the future? The demographics of an aging population suggests health care will be big, say some. Data science is scheduled to explode, suggest others, or maybe anything computer-related is a solid bet. But let’s be honest, predicting exact job titles set to soar or the fates of specific sectors is nearly impossible.Read More
Twenty, even ten years ago the traditional mantra of the working world was that if you were highly skilled – you were highly paid. Fast forward to the world of today and something completely different appears to be happening wherein we are being introduced to a Low Wage / High Skilled worker.Read More
Last week, much of Beijing was forced to slow down and in the case of its airports, actually shut down owing to high levels of smog. Here in Durban, South Africa, the Cop 17 talks rolled out to try and reach a binding agreement about climate change and a globally shared responsibility towards tackling the problem. The irony was not lost on me as I read reports of each of the big players: US, China and India, stalling the talks for their own economic self interest and reasons. Like many people I initially thought to myself that the smog will truly have to reach rock bottom before a nation like China takes the hint to progress environmental sustainability in spite of its economic progress. On further study, however, I believe that China is trying to do just that.Read More
One of the most interesting goals of China’s new Five Year Plan is to have 10% of its population as community volunteers. When you recognise that 10% of the Chinese population stands at approximately 135 million people, you being to gain a realistic understanding of what a staggering thought process this is! It is a hugely positive, if not ambitious, target to try and mobilise such a vast quantity of their citizens to give to the community and play their role in building China as a nation. Not only is it a sign of the time that their is such a significant emphasis being placed on community involvement and volunteering, but it also symbolizes the a certain ‘Ubuntu” that this seemingly unemotional and clinical nation has lying beneath their surface.Read More
Earlier this year China produced its new Five Year Plan which will run from 2011 to 2015. The plan is ambitious, setting specific targets around economic growth, innovation and a massive transition to clean energy. The Chinese Premiere, Wen Jiabao, has alot of work to do and his 5 year term, which comes up for renewal in 2013, will be made or broken on the delivery of these plans. The same applies for his successor if he fails to get another term. From the outset it appears that China is confidently approaching the next five years with the mindset of pioneering new ideas, setting a benchmark for innovation and aiming to own the ‘green’ technology.Read More
In this talk, Richard Wilkinson takes us through how we feel instinctively that societies with huge income gaps are somehow going wrong. In it he charts the hard data on economic inequality, and shows what gets worse when rich and poor are too far apart: real effects on health, lifespan, even such basic values as trust.Read More
Why the West Rules for Now
Précis of Ian Morris’s book
Archaeologist Ian Morris’s book ‘Why the West Rules for Now’ takes a look at over 15 000 years of history to offer fresh insights into why development differed in the East and West and what the future will bring. It looks at the patterns of history to see what they reveal about the future. All his findings are based totally on archaeological digs that have been discovered and dated back to different time periods in history.Read More
I have long been a fan of Thomas Friedman – his books ‘The World is Flat’ (2005) and ‘Hot Flat and Crowded’ (2008) both provided superb insight into what was actually happening to drive change in the world. And his latest book ‘That Used to be Us: What went wrong with America’ (2011) is similarly riveting reading. I will write further on this in due course. However it was an article he wrote in the International herald Tribune this week that really caught my eye – great reading on the world today. Enjoy…Read More
Two weeks ago I was in the UK facilitating a strategic review session. The client is an organisation in the financial services market and I began by asking the the simple question: ‘So what has changed over the last 6 months?’ To my shock, the answer from around the room was “Not much…’
On throwing around some thoughts into what I thought was change with regards to the global financial markets, the discussion delved deeper and the response slowly shifted to ‘Well…I guess things are changing…’Read More