My selection as a lector: «MIT Sloan Management Review» | Vía @mitsmr


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  • Four Ways Social Data Can Generate Business Value
    Full article: http://goo.gl/387coA

    Big data has been described as the new oil, but perhaps a more apt metaphor is the new solar — it is a renewable source of energy, but must be cost-effectively captured and processed to be converted into new forms of value.

    Companies both large and small have access to a growing stream of social data from an increasing number of sources. This stream is continually being enriched and renewed as our interactions unfold over time and as our ability to efficiently capture data about those interactions increases.

    While many firms are investing time and resources into mining this data, the bulk of the attention thus far has been placed on how social data can help public relations, marketing and sales engage more relevantly with consumers. Indeed, the amount of data available for this purpose is staggering: according to a Forrester blog from 2010, American consumers were already posting more than a 1.6 billion reviews of products and services online in 2009. That number continues to climb as more sites enable user-generated reviews and ratings.

    We believe, however, that firms are missing a significant opportunity to use social data to gain intimate and real-time knowledge about what is going on within, not just outside, the organization.

    Today, many organizations take either a 30,000-foot view of social data or an intensely granular, technical approach. Few firms have tapped into social data in a way that allows them to connect it explicitly to operating performance data and execute on it effectively.

    Social data science leaders and business thought-leaders must meet in the middle to collaborate on both how to analyze the data and why such analysis would be meaningful. We have only begun to understand social data’s potential value in the workplace, but much of this potential is dependent on having the mindsets and methods in place to make the most of our newest natural resource.

  • Social Business = Social Bonding
    Full article: http://goo.gl/UH0PAk

    A study by FedEx and Ketchum found that 52% of respondents said social business was strengthening relationships with the general public; 51% said it was strengthening relationships with clients; and 40% said it was strengthening relationships with partners and suppliers.

    Social business activities can pay off in various ways. Earlier this year, MIT Sloan Management Reviewand Deloitte highlighted benefits related to better market intelligence, faster customer service as well as improvements to internal operations, such as finding expertise, distributing knowledge and more effective project collaboration. (See our 2012 Special Report, Social Business: What Are Companies Really Doing?)
    While building stronger relationships is naturally fuzzier and harder to pin down benefit than, say, “customer response time” or even something like “increased market intelligence,” improved relationships means a stronger business across and beyond the organization. (We’ve previously published on the importance of building trust with employees and customers and suppliers; see, for instance: “Unconventional Insights for Managing Stakeholder Trust,” by Michael Pirson, and Deepak Malhotra, from the July 1 2008 issue of MIT SMR.)

    The FedEx/Ketchum study’s report of the connection between social business and improved stakeholder relationships is supported by other researchers in the field. In a recent interview withMIT SMR, strategy and management consultant Nilofer Merchant discussed how her research found that social enhances a firm’s relationships with employees and customers. Jacob Morgan, principal of Chess Media Group, a management consulting and strategic advisory firm on collaboration and the author of The Collaborative Organization (McGraw-Hill, 2012), told us that based on his observations, the benefits of collaboration even positively impacts the quality of life of employees at home, outside of the workplace. And Dion Hinchcliffe, in his four-stage Capability Ladder of Social Business, says that the highest level in the ladder is also relationship based, what he calls the ability to “partner with the world.”

Why Price Isn’t the Biggest Factor on Big Deals | Inc. |


Inc.com - The Daily Resource for Entrepreneurs

Most deals aren’t won on price alone. Align your value proposition with your buyer’s strategic needs and the deal will get bigger and possibly better.This is an excerpt from Tom Searcy’s latest book, «How to Close a Deal Like Warren Buffett—Lessons from the World’s Greatest Dealmaker» written with Henry DeVries and published by McGraw-Hill, available now.

When Walmart sold Warren Buffett their McLane Company Division, which was valued at $22 billion in 2003 at the time of the sale, they made a choice they never made before—to sell a part of the company.  Was it the money? A fair question, but Walmart has plenty of money—and although the $1.45 billion cash acquisition price was a nice chunk of change—the real reason was strategic benefit.

McLane was well run, profitable and successful, but it was still the ugly stepsister of the family. It had razor-thin margins and it’s ability to grow was limited because competitors to Walmart were wary about contributing in any way to the success of their biggest rival. McLane was the weakest link in the chain for Walmart. Buffett’s transaction was quick and easy and it brought an independence that would allow investments and revenues for McLane to grow without negatively impacting Walmart’s balance sheet. This was addition by subtraction.

An outright auction may have been more financially beneficial in the short run, but Walmart wanted to keep the capability of McLane as a part of its supply and distribution.

What do you bring to a customer’s strategy? Continuar leyendo «Why Price Isn’t the Biggest Factor on Big Deals | Inc. |»

How to Conduct an Internal Interview

What the Experts Say
Whether you worked with a candidate closely or you just «know of» her, don’t skimp on the internal interview process. «Just because you know someone well doesn’t mean you will know if they will be able to perform well in a new job,» says Susan Cantrell, senior research fellow at Accenture’s Institute for High Performance and co-author of Workforce of One: Revolutionizing Talent Management through Customization. Assuming you know all the candidate’s skills, capabilities, and potential is dangerous. «Most hiring managers find out little additional information about a candidate during the interview; they don’t get to the right level of detail to make their questions meaningful, and they rely too much on subjective, non-criteria based judgment,» says Cantrell. [Más…]

Instead, be disciplined about how you conduct the interview. «There’s no point in asking questions that will reveal information you already know, so the focus should be on new information,» says Peter Cappelli, the George W. Taylor Professor of Management and the director of the Center for Human Resources at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and the author of Talent on Demand: Managing Talent in the Age of Uncertainty.

To conduct internal interviews that are worth your time and provide new and useful insight into the candidate, consider the following.


Best Practices / by Amy Gallo

Organizations spend the majority of their hiring resources on finding and screening external candidates. But when you need to fill a position, the most cost-effective and practical thing you can do is hire someone from within. In fact, most hiring in companies is done internally. Still, the internal interview is often thought of as something to check off on a hiring to-do list rather than a source of real information. If you already know the person, what else is there to learn, right? Wrong. When conducted well, internal interviews can provide valuable new insight into a known candidate.

What the Experts Say
Whether you worked with a candidate closely or you just «know of» her, don’t skimp on the internal interview process. «Just because you know someone well doesn’t mean you will know if they will be able to perform well in a new job,» says Susan Cantrell, senior research fellow at Accenture’s Institute for High Performance and co-author of Workforce of One: Revolutionizing Talent Management through Customization. Assuming you know all the candidate’s skills, capabilities, and potential is dangerous. «Most hiring managers find out little additional information about a candidate during the interview; they don’t get to the right level of detail to make their questions meaningful, and they rely too much on subjective, non-criteria based judgment,» says Cantrell. Continuar leyendo «How to Conduct an Internal Interview»

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