Investigación de Mercado: Focus Group Vs Experiencia Digital


See on Scoop.itGabriel Catalano human being | #INperfeccion® a way to find new insight & perspectives

Hay muy buenas empresas de investigación de mercado, pero no todas han asumido la investigación de mercados on line en su actividad diaria.

Los focus group muchas veces han terminado por considerarse el fracaso de las estadísticas fiables. Y es que es inevitable que la gente se comporte de forma diferente cuando alguien le mira, es la naturaleza humana, y es precisamente lo que ocurre cuando se hace un focus group.

Un focus group es algo caro, deficiente, impreciso y engañoso, al que se enfrenta directamente la prueba a través de experiencias digitales en su lugar. Pippa Nutt, vicepresidenta online y de medios en Canadá de Northern Lights Direct explica en DMNews por qué:

1. La gente se comporta de forma diferente cuando está debajo de un microscopio
El comportamiento de los sujetos de un estudio inevitablemente se ve alterado porque éstos saben que están siendo observados. Y si el responsable del estudio es consciente de que los sujetos se comportan de forma diferente, ¿qué validez tienen esos datos? Además, la persona que dirige el grupo influye sobre los resultados, especialmente cuando hay sujetos con una opinión formada sobre la dirección que creen que debería tomar el grupo.

Es inevitable. La naturaleza humana nos hace interpretar los signos más sutiles y reaccionar de acuerdo a ellos, lo que altera cualquier resultado. Y esto no pasa online, porque no sabemos necesariamente si alguien nos mira, haciendo que las reacciones sean más nativas, naturales y, como consecuencia, más válidas desde la perspectiva del marketing.

2. Las audiencias en los focus group no son un reflejo de la audiencia real, y menos de la audiencia online
Es imposible comparar el impacto o la validez del comportamiento de miles de visitantes a una web con un focus group de participantes que, primero tienen que querer participar, entrar en los criterios de selección y, también, caber en la sala que se ha reservado para tal propósito. Al final, la audiencia de un focus group es algo que se selecciona y para el que la gente tiene que querer entrar en esa selección. Leer más “Investigación de Mercado: Focus Group Vs Experiencia Digital”

Una startup de Wayra Argentina presentará su proyecto a inversores de EE.UU.


Wayra, la aceleradora global de startups tecnológicas de Telefónica, anuncia su primer “Demo Day” internacional el 12 de diciembre en Miami, Estados Unidos.
Durante este encuentro se presentará ante la comunidad inversora americana, reunida en el marco de la Americas Venture Capital Conference (AVCC), una selección de las startups aceleradas durante este año en sus doce sedes de Latinoamérica y Europa.
Las startups presentarán propuestas a problemas y oportundiades de negocio en áreas tales como “cloud computing”, video, HTML5, servicios financieros, aplicaciones móviles, e-Health y seguridad, entre otras.
Por parte de Wayra Argentina, Quolaw participará de este hito. Leer más “Una startup de Wayra Argentina presentará su proyecto a inversores de EE.UU.”

Time & Follow Through on Your Goals


Manage time and follow through

Work Awesome | Pooja Lohana

Several years ago, I moved to Silicon Valley to pursue a healthcare-related postgraduate degree. The first six months or so of school was the most rigorous academic experience I’ve ever had. Forty plus hours in the classroom per week plus study time crammed into short quarters was much more than I could handle.

After things started lightening up a bit, I began expanding my horizons in the local area. I started meeting people who were young like me, but working at some of the local famous tech companies. It seemed like everyone was incredibly busy at work but were always making time to meet with other people to talk about startup companies.

I soon started attending some of these meetings because my background was related to the tech industry. It wasn’t long after that when I decided I too wanted to try a startup.

I didn’t know where to begin so I started making a list of the most important things a startup needed. I started asking questions around venture-capital, fundraising, software development, and all the other things which can go into a new company. All of these things were great, but without a rock solid idea I didn’t think I’d have a chance of succeeding.

I partnered with a local entrepreneur who had experience building and selling companies. He also had experience in the healthcare space so we decided to do a healthcare startup. On top of all my personal responsibilities at school I spent long hours trying to manage my time and develop our idea into a fundable business.

It’s been a few years since we set everything in motion but now after countless hours of hard work we’re finally seeing the company take off.

It’s definitely been an interesting journey through the wilderness to get to where we are. We’ve had to set milestones and goals and work diligently to achieve them. Business plans don’t write themselves. Strategic partners aren’t formed on their own. Software coding doesn’t happen out of thin air. These must all be accomplished by making a target and aiming for it. If I had to sum it up in two things, I’d say I only succeeded in starting up my business because I learned to manage time and follow through my goals.

Manage Your Time…  Leer más “Time & Follow Through on Your Goals”

In Brazil, Babies Mean Business | Jillian D’Onfro


inc.com

A small crop of Brazilian baby retailers are gaining traction–and funding from high-profile investors.
Baby boom? It looks like there is a burgeoning baby e-commerce sector in Brazil.

shutterstock images

Most recently, Baby, a Brazil-based online retailer of baby goods, just secured $16.7 million in financing, led by Accel Partners, according to The New York Times.

This announcement comes hot on the heels of more Brazil baby start-up success: Another online retailer, Bebestore, recently raised more than $10 million from London-based venture capital firm Atomico, reported The Times.

Overall, Brazil’s economic growth forecasts continue to drop, but e-commerce still entices investors. Why?  Brazilians spent 26% more online last year than they did in 2010—or $10.1 billion. This year, experts estimate total spending to increase to $12.6 billion.

While the sector is growing, it does offer unique challenges for entrepreneurs.  The two Americans who founded Baby, Davis Smith and Kimball Thomas, told the paper they struggled with a shipping infrastructure that is very different from that in the United States.

“Being an entrepreneur in Brazil is not for the faint of heart,” Smith told The Times.

Thinking global is not an option for startups anymore // blog.press42.com


By Alex aka Chief WOWness  //  press42

We just got back from Poland were we were invited to give a talk at one of the largest investment forums in Poland, the Satus VC investment forum. It’s been a very interesting trip. We were initially connected with them in San Francisco and we had a long conversation on the need of getting European companies outside their local boundaries.

Satus VC runs 3 different incubator programs across Poland and as such, it has a very large pool of startups in its portfolio. Because they touch many fields, they have very different types of companies, some of which have global goals in sight. And as such, they asked us to collaborate with them in aiding these startups when it comes to communicating and going global.

So we delivered a first talk on the matter that judging by the feedback we got from many attendees, it was very well received and it nailed down the major problems Polish, and most definitely, most Easter European companies are experiencing in terms of market location.

We can’t stress how important it is for European companies to break the local barriers and start thinking in a global way from day one. Most people would mistake thinking global with going international. While it might seem similar, one is a probable consequence of the other. Leer más “Thinking global is not an option for startups anymore // blog.press42.com”

Case Study: When Key Employees Clash

The caller ID on Matthew Spark’s phone read “Kid Spectrum, Inc.” It was someone from the Orlando office, probably administrative director Ellen Larson. She had been in daily contact with Matthew since he purchased the company, a provider of in-home autism services for children, eight months ago. He appreciated Ellen’s eagerness to help him build the business, even if she was sometimes abrupt. Kid Spectrum’s previous owner, Arthur Hamel, had told Matthew that Ellen, with nearly two decades of experience in health services, would be one of his biggest assets.


HBR Blog Network
blogs.hbr.org

H. Irving Grousbeck

H. IRVING GROUSBECK

H. Irving Grousbeck is a consulting professor of management at Stanford Graduate School of
Business and a director of its Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.


______.______
Editor’s Note: This fictionalized case study will appear in a forthcoming issue of Harvard Business Review, along with commentary from experts and readers. If you’d like your comment to be considered for publication, please be sure to include your full name, company or university affiliation, and email address.

The caller ID on Matthew Spark’s phone read “Kid Spectrum, Inc.” It was someone from the Orlando office, probably administrative director Ellen Larson. She had been in daily contact with Matthew since he purchased the company, a provider of in-home autism services for children, eight months ago. He appreciated Ellen’s eagerness to help him build the business, even if she was sometimes abrupt. Kid Spectrum’s previous owner, Arthur Hamel, had told Matthew that Ellen, with nearly two decades of experience in health services, would be one of his biggest assets.

“Matthew, it’s Ellen. I don’t want to bother you again, but we have a situation down here.”
Matthew sat back in his chair and readied himself. The “situation” could be anything from the copier running out of ink to the building catching on fire.

“I’m calling about Ronnie,” she said… Leer más “Case Study: When Key Employees Clash”

Reviving Entrepreneurship

America’s economic culture has traditionally been distinguished by a willingness to pursue opportunities; a parallel willingness to adopt new products and services; social, legal, and economic tolerance for failure; and the ability to efficiently redeploy people and money. All this has led to a highly evolved system for allocating human and financial capital to entrepreneurial ventures, which has brought the U.S. enormous advantage.

But this entrepreneurial engine is showing serious signs of weakness. Considerably fewer new businesses are formed in the United States today than in the past, creating fewer new jobs. Venture capital funding has contracted in both amount and breadth, and initial public offerings of small-cap companies have sharply declined. In other markets, including China and Brazil, those indicators are moving in the opposite direction.

As U.S. policy makers wake up to the need to reinvigorate entrepreneurial ventures, they must recognize entrepreneurship as a process, not an act. Their decisions change the climate for new enterprises at each stage of that process, sometimes dramatically—whether or not those decisions are made with entrepreneurship in mind.

Spot an Opportunity

Basic and Translational Science
U.S. government funding of basic research has paid off handsomely in the past. Private capital has been able to leverage federally supported discoveries, allowing them to be translated into valuable commercial applications. But the level and nature of government research funding are problematic today. As resources tighten up, decisions about what to fund grow ever more conservative. Labs have difficulty obtaining capital for the projects with the greatest potential societal payback, because those projects tend to be highly speculative and to challenge conventional wisdom. The U.S. needs to find a way to facilitate the right kinds of “risky” research.


by Josh Lerner and William Sahlman http://hbr.org/2012/03/reviving-entrepreneurship/ar/
Photograph: Topical Press
Agency/Stringer/Getty Images: Orville Wright lands a glider, 1911
America’s economic culture has traditionally been distinguished by a willingness to pursue opportunities; a parallel willingness to adopt new products and services; social, legal, and economic tolerance for failure; and the ability to efficiently redeploy people and money. All this has led to a highly evolved system for allocating human and financial capital to entrepreneurial ventures, which has brought the U.S. enormous advantage.

But this entrepreneurial engine is showing serious signs of weakness. Considerably fewer new businesses are formed in the United States today than in the past, creating fewer new jobs. Venture capital funding has contracted in both amount and breadth, and initial public offerings of small-cap companies have sharply declined. In other markets, including China and Brazil, those indicators are moving in the opposite direction.

As U.S. policy makers wake up to the need to reinvigorate entrepreneurial ventures, they must recognize entrepreneurship as a process, not an act. Their decisions change the climate for new enterprises at each stage of that process, sometimes dramatically—whether or not those decisions are made with entrepreneurship in mind.

Spot an Opportunity

Basic and Translational Science
U.S. government funding of basic research has paid off handsomely in the past. Private capital has been able to leverage federally supported discoveries, allowing them to be translated into valuable commercial applications. But the level and nature of government research funding are problematic today. As resources tighten up, decisions about what to fund grow ever more conservative. Labs have difficulty obtaining capital for the projects with the greatest potential societal payback, because those projects tend to be highly speculative and to challenge conventional wisdom. The U.S. needs to find a way to facilitate the right kinds of “risky” research. Leer más “Reviving Entrepreneurship”

5 Tips for taking your tech startup from big idea to business success

3. Do your homework
More often than not, real success comes from doing your homework. There’s no use in launching a revolutionary product if your market simply isn’t ready for it. So do your analysis, beta test your product, see who bites, and don’t ever be afraid to put out a free tester. Once the thumbs go up and the market says “yes please”, then you can start selling, and make a very strong case to potential financiers, who can help you to take your business to the next level.

4. Manage your cash-flow
Potential venture capitalist partners are looking for a solid sales track record. This doesn’t just mean more money; it means giving your prospective venture capital investors something to measure ROI against. If you can manage a solid growing flow of sales, then your prospective VC partners are able to feel a lot more secure about your ability to manage and nurture their seed capital.

Professional VC companies have a very strict litmus test on profitability. Most will not accept a loss-to-win ratio of less than 50%, so you really need to be able to show them that your idea has the capacity to go all the way, and that you are the one to take it there.

5. Change your mind-set
In spite of increasing opportunities, going it alone continues to be a frightening prospect, particularly in developing economies.

However, armed with the correct mind-set, and the right amount of hard work, research and planning, there’s nothing stopping you from turning your big idea into big business success.


 

Dave Blakey

 By  | http://memeburn.com

 

Throughout the world, and particularly in emerging market countries, the entrepreneurial landscape remains notoriously difficult to navigate, with an estimated 80% of small businesses failing to sustain themselves for a period of longer than five years.

However, with an increasing percentage of jobs now being directly attributable to small business ventures, financial backers in both private and public sectors are slowly starting to acknowledge the substantial impact of entrepreneurial activity on a nation’s economy.

Yet, in spite the rising global trend towards venture capitalist backing of tech startups, there remain very few such initiatives present in emerging markets. Can this be accredited to unsustainable entrepreneurial ecosystems, or is success simply a mind-set shift away?

Conservative investors
A venture capital investor once told me that, out of ten investments, he expected seven to fail, two to return his investment and one to make a fortune. Those are fairly frightening odds for someone investing large amounts of capital, but even more terrifying for someone looking to leave the security of the job market to launch a start-up business.

What’s more, bankers and financiers are generally not intent on funding ideas that might be perceived as “pie in the sky”, particularly when it comes to the technical and creative industries.

As a result, it’s no wonder that many start-ups end before they even crank up the proverbial engine, the main reason being they couldn’t raise the venture capital financing required to start, or were simply too afraid to try.

1. Reduce your risksLeer más “5 Tips for taking your tech startup from big idea to business success”

´No se trata de llevarse el mejor trozo, sino de hacer la tarta más grande´

Viven los negocios con pasión, como un presidente de club que paga de su bolsillo las fichas de sus alevines. Apadrinan “start ups”, nuevas empresas con más potencial que capital, y las rescatan de la incomprensión de financieros que no distinguen una innovación de una ocurrencia. Son los “ángeles de los negocios”, una mezcla de mentor y socio con casi un centenar de miembros en la Comunidad. Megías visitó la UMH para hablar de su oficio y su asociación, CVBan.


Viven los negocios con pasión, como un presidente de club que paga de su bolsillo las fichas de sus alevines. Apadrinan “start ups“, nuevas empresas con más potencial que capital, y las rescatan de la incomprensión de financieros que no distinguen una innovación de una ocurrencia. Son los “ángeles de los negocios”, una mezcla de mentor y socio con casi un centenar de miembros en la Comunidad. Megías visitó la UMH para hablar de su oficio y su asociación, CVBan.

TEXTO DE ANDRÉS VALDÉS 

¿Qué es un business angel?
Es una palabreja rara que se refiere a una persona física. No suele ser una sociedad de inversiones, sino una persona que al final lo que se ha planteado es invertir en proyectos innovadores con potencial de crecimiento. En su contra va la tasa de mortalidad de nuevas empresas; el 90% de las empresas creadas no suelen superar el segundo año de vida. Son inversiones que tienen un riesgo mayor, pero mucho interés. La característica más llamativa es que se invierte en una start up, empresas de nueva creación, que se eligen por el campo al que se dedican.

¿Cuál es la diferencia entre un business angel y un socio capitalista?Leer más “´No se trata de llevarse el mejor trozo, sino de hacer la tarta más grande´”

The Lifestyle of an Internet Entrepreneur

Outsourcing parts of your business can be a great strategy, but one that needs careful management.

If your business chooses to outsource some of its activities, a part of your time or someone else’s will still be required to manage projects, and hire staff and/or freelancers to contribute to the business.

As a founder or co-founder of your web business, you have the important task of driving its strategic direction. You wouldn’t want your business to be completely run on auto pilot without any input from yourself.

This brings to question a related issue about what sort of lifestyle an entrepreneur has. Will you have a dreaded lifestyle that consists of working relentless long hours with little time for recreation? Or will you have a leisurely lifestyle that consists of working only a few hours a day?


Ask successful internet entrepreneurs what it takes to create a successful business online, and the majority will say that it takes a great deal of hard work and perseverance to succeed.

Earlier this year, I read Daniel Scocco’s post at Daily Blog Tips on the working methods of 12 top online entrepreneurs.

A successful online entrepreneur himself, Daniel interviewed twelve well known and successful online entrepreneurs to find out what their typical work week looked like, and what they enjoyed doing when not working.

The line up of successful online entrepreneurs included Darren Rowse, Aaron Wall, Neil Patel, Yaro Starak, Chris Garrett and Collis Ta’eed. The interviews revealed that the majority of these entrepreneurs worked over 60 hours a week, 7 days a week. One entrepreneur – Dan Schawbel – works a staggering 110 hours a week.

Being an internet entrepreneur is hard work, and Collis at Envato makes no bones about this in his course on building a blog business. Here’s a few relevant quotes from the eBook, “How to Build a Successful Blog Business”:

“So building a business out of blogging, like any business, involves investment both in time and money.”

“Like any business, it will take hard work, dedication, savvy, and a bit of luck.”

“There are bloggers making considerable amounts of money, and in fact two of the case studies in this book record how two blogs have worked their way into five and six-figures per month in revenue. However, like most things in life, it takes a lot of work.” Leer más “The Lifestyle of an Internet Entrepreneur”

Courtesy and Tact Can Go a Long Way for Startups

How To Cancel a Meeting
“You better not be the person who was asking for the meeting. You should grovel. You should call personally to state your sincerest apologies.”
– Mark Suster

Back in May of this year, investor Mark Suster recalled an anecdote when the cancellation of a meeting frustrated him. He had scheduled a meeting with an entrepreneur and kept the commitment despite a strong desire to reschedule and attend a conference. When the entrepreneur cancelled last minute (by having his assistant call Suster’s, no less) Suster was upset, to say the least.

Long story short, the entrepreneur had a good reason for canceling the meeting, but Suster was left with a bad taste in his mouth due to the way it was handled. As he outlines in his post, depending on the proximity to the meeting, canceling an appointment has varying levels of requirements.

If it’s a few days before, or earlier, it’s okay to send a polite email in most cases. Within a day of the meeting, Suster says you need to be aware of who you are dealing with, and decide accordingly.


covermouth_sep10.jpgWith the angst from the angels and venture capitalists debate still hanging in the air, and the thickening plot of “Angelgate,” it’s easy to forget that courteous, polite and gracious behavior can save your startup from easy pitfalls. In an industry that functions largely on connections, burning bridges is never a smart move, intentional or not. Here are a pair of examples from seasoned venture capitalists on how playing nice can go a long way.

How To Cancel a Meeting

“You better not be the person who was asking for the meeting. You should grovel. You should call personally to state your sincerest apologies.”
Mark Suster

Back in May of this year, investor Mark Suster recalled an anecdote when the cancellation of a meeting frustrated him. He had scheduled a meeting with an entrepreneur and kept the commitment despite a strong desire to reschedule and attend a conference. When the entrepreneur cancelled last minute (by having his assistant call Suster’s, no less) Suster was upset, to say the least.

Long story short, the entrepreneur had a good reason for canceling the meeting, but Suster was left with a bad taste in his mouth due to the way it was handled. As he outlines in his post, depending on the proximity to the meeting, canceling an appointment has varying levels of requirements.

If it’s a few days before, or earlier, it’s okay to send a polite email in most cases. Within a day of the meeting, Suster says you need to be aware of who you are dealing with, and decide accordingly. Leer más “Courtesy and Tact Can Go a Long Way for Startups”

Is Corporate Venture Dead? Is Open Innovation the New Thing?

Once upon a time, we had many corporate venture units that invested in external projects as well as in internal projects from the corporate groups that they belonged to.

The number of units declined steadily during the last decade and it continues to do so in the aftermath of the financial crisis. One company that I have always admired is Danfoss Ventures, which is the corporate venture arm of Danfoss, a group with 26,000 employees working with refrigeration, air conditioning, compressors and more.

Unfortunately, Danfoss Ventures – my role model on corporate venture – is now dead. According to Executive Vice President at Danfoss, Nis Storgaard, this is about prioritizing resources where they make most impact.


Once upon a time, we had many corporate venture units that invested in external projects as well as in internal projects from the corporate groups that they belonged to.

The number of units declined steadily during the last decade and it continues to do so in the aftermath of the financial crisis. One company that I have always admired is Danfoss Ventures, which is the corporate venture arm of Danfoss, a group with 26,000 employees working with refrigeration, air conditioning, compressors and more.

Unfortunately, Danfoss Ventures – my role model on corporate venture – is now dead. According to Executive Vice President at Danfoss, Nis Storgaard, this is about prioritizing resources where they make most impact. Leer más “Is Corporate Venture Dead? Is Open Innovation the New Thing?”

My Life As A CEO (And VC): Chief Psychologist

Anybody who has worked with me knows that I have these “control freak” tendencies as I think many leaders do. We want quality, we trust our own instincts & judgments and we think that many people don’t live up to our standards. But we know that ultimately being effective is about finding those people that do. It often takes a while of experimentation and watching their results to start to trust them. But when they start to meet and exceed your expectations it’s magic. You’re suddenly free to focus your energies elsewhere.

Once you’ve been around for a few years, attracted some great people, landed real, paying customers and raised venture capital you’ve likely got a talented team around you. Almost definitionally very talented people will butt heads. It’s your job to give people enough space to flourish without conflict, resolve conflicts when they do occur, encourage your team members to perform at their best and set the culture by which they ultimately treat their colleagues and staff.

My first company was founded in Ireland, headquartered in England and had country operations in the UK, France & Germany. Due to the language and culture issues in Europe we opted for a country structure with an MD in each country and local sales, marketing & customers support staff. We obviously had the debate about whether these functions could be centralized but either strategy has its trade-offs.


This is a guest post by Mark Suster, a 2x entrepreneur who has gone to the Dark Side of VC. He started his first company in 1999 and was headquartered in London, leaving in 2005 and selling to a publicly traded French services company. He founded his second company in Palo Alto in 2005 and sold this company to Salesforce.com, becoming VP of Product Management. He joined GRP Partners in 2007 as a General Partner focusing on early-stage technology companies. Read more about Suster at Bothsidesofthetable and on Twitter at @msuster.

I’ve had a post in my head for months – maybe longer – about the role of a CEO. My primary role was “chief psychologist” and as I’ve learned over the past few years the same has been true as a VC. Both are basically people businesses.

I finally got around to writing it having read Fred Wilson’s post about what a CEO does. He says it basically comes down to three key functions:

  • Sets the overall vision and strategy of the company and communicates it to all stakeholders
  • Recruits, hires, and retains the very best talent for the company.
  • Makes sure there is always enough cash in the bank.

Matt Blumberg, who runs one of Fred’s portfolio companies, Return Path, follows up with an additional three:

  • Don’t be a bottleneck (make sure you aren’t holding up people’s work)
  • Run great meetings (don’t be a productivity drain on the company)
  • Stay fresh (be mentally and physically fit & attuned to what is going on in the world)

And I’d add to the world of “lists of three” the old adage that many VCs quote about boards having only three roles:

  • Raising money
  • Selling the company
  • Hiring & Firing the CEO

These are good starting points and one day I’d like to elaborate more on the topic of running a company and as only I can do I will take these short lists and make them much longer 😉

But today I’m going to do the opposite. I’d like to boil down the role to just one critical function: chief psychologist. Leer más “My Life As A CEO (And VC): Chief Psychologist”

Keeping Your Business Plan Flexible

People make business plans for all sorts of reasons — to attract funding, evaluate future growth, build partnerships, or guide development. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these plans are usually out of date by the time the printer ink dries. Business moves fast: the product’s features morph, new competitors emerge, or the economic climate shifts. When these changes occur, many people just throw their business plans out the window. For a plan to be truly valuable it needs to evolve with your company and stay relevant in the face of uncertainty. [Más…]

What the Experts Say
Despite the hype business plans get from corporate advisers, “most business owners don’t have a formal business plan,” says Patricia Greene, Professor of Entrepreneurship of Babson College and co-editor of The Development of University-based Entrepreneurship Ecosystem. Yet one of the first items you’ll find on every entrepreneur’s checklist is Write business plan. The key is to create a living document. “When you think about a business plan, think about the distinction between a snapshot and a moving picture,” says William Sahlman, the Dimitri V. D’Arbeloff – Class of 1955 Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and author of How to Write a Great Business Plan. Sahlman explains that you need something that moves with your business. However, capturing all of the unknowns while not sounding wishy-washy is challenging. Below are several ways to make sure your plan is a fluid, useful document.


business plan

by Amy Gallo
Blogs.hbr.org

People make business plans for all sorts of reasons — to attract funding, evaluate future growth, build partnerships, or guide development. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these plans are usually out of date by the time the printer ink dries. Business moves fast: the product’s features morph, new competitors emerge, or the economic climate shifts. When these changes occur, many people just throw their business plans out the window. For a plan to be truly valuable it needs to evolve with your company and stay relevant in the face of uncertainty. Leer más “Keeping Your Business Plan Flexible”

The Efficient Use of Ideas

Other “leaps” forward include the efficient use of labor (thanks Frederick Taylor) and the efficient use of capital, which has eventually brought us to the problems with financial engineering that we’ve encountered recently. All Taylor cared about was understanding how to get the most, best, productivity out of the labor of individuals, while bankers, financiers and CFOs have their own metrics about the efficient use of capital – return on invested capital as an example. [Más…]

We’re at a cusp of a completely new competitive phenomenon I believe – I’ll call it the efficient use of ideas and insights. The fact is that product lifecycles are rapidly declining, and firms in any geography can complete for their home markets as well as export markets. This means everyone is competing for global market share, and the current “leader” in any category is really only as good as his or her next product or service. In this environment, a firm must be efficient with its use of labor, and its use of capital, but ultimately those are in service to the efficient use of ideas and insights.

The reason is that once a particular “efficiency” frontier is reached, additional investment doesn’t add much value – in fact, as evidenced by some of the financial instruments, it may detract from the market place. Eventually every competitive firm is relatively equal in terms of its use of labor and capital – although some have less expensive labor, which allows them to be less efficient with capital or vice versa. However, at some point, more and more investment in a frontier that is highly efficient across the competitors doesn’t add value. So a new differentiator or frontier must be identified.

I believe that new frontier is the efficient use of ideas. In the near future, firms that are very efficient at creating, developing and implementing new ideas as products and services will be the winners, because they’ll be the ones consistently creating the newest and best products, services and business models. In a world of global competition and ever shortening product life cycles, becoming very very good at spotting opportunities and creating new products and services to meet those needs will be the competitive differentiator.


by Jeffrey Phillips

The Efficient Use of IdeasEvery significant “leap forward” in the span of human consciousness has coincided with a significant change in the efficient use of a significant resource. For example – the transition from nomadic life to farming. This transition came about because people learned to till the ground and grow food that was dependable and sustaining. The fact that people could stay in one place and have a consistent food source meant that they could take on other tasks. The more efficiently they used the soil, the more crops they could grow, and the more time available for other activities.

Other “leaps” forward include the efficient use of labor (thanks Frederick Taylor) and the efficient use of capital, which has eventually brought us to the problems with financial engineering that we’ve encountered recently. All Taylor cared about was understanding how to get the most, best, productivity out of the labor of individuals, while bankers, financiers and CFOs have their own metrics about the efficient use of capital – return on invested capital as an example. Leer más “The Efficient Use of Ideas”