Better Business Focus – January 2020

You can now download the January issue of Better Business Focus.  Please feel free to share Better Business Focus with your friends or colleagues.

Better Business Focus is the essential key for business owners and managers. It achieves that by focusing on the way in which successful businesses compete and manage their organisations.  It focuses on how people are recruited, coached and developed; on how marketing and selling is undertaken in professional markets as well as in markets with intense competition; on how technology and the Internet is reshaping the face of domestic and home business; and on how people are being equipped with new skills and techniques. In short, it offers expert inspiration for a better business.

This Month’s articles include:

Braden Kelley
What’s in the CEO’s Innovation Playbook? Recently I received an advance copy of “The CEO’s Innovation Playbook” – the latest white paper from Mastercard and Harvard Business Review Analytic Services. For the effort they interviewed a dozen CEO’s highly innovative companies including Citigroup, Lyft and Coca Cola.

Andy Bounds
A PowerPoint trick from roadside protesters! When you see protest marches, people often carry signs and banners.

Pete Foley
Innovation Intelligence – 4 thinking tools for Innovators: This article continues on from an Innovation Excellence blog I wrote about how personality types can influence innovation capability.

Benjamin Hardy
Tell me what you say yes to, and I’ll tell you who you are: “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say no to almost everything.” Warren Buffett.

Adam Malofsky
Want great insight? Then experience it! Listen, Watch…Then Do. I’ll argue that while most do the first two, very few get to the last – the do part. That’s the single most important thing. It’s through the do, through direct experience that one develops and picks up on the most important thing.

Greg Satell
Is artificial intelligence the new productivity paradox? In the 1970s and 80s, business investment in computer technology were increasing by more than 20% per year. Strangely though, productivity growth had decreased during the same period. Economists found this turn of events so strange that they called it the productivity paradox to underline their confusion.

Tom Koulopoulos
The greatest threat of AI is not what you think: Stop worrying about artificial intelligence (AI) becoming your overlord. The real threat is much more obvious and interesting.

Adi Gaskell
Companies are failing to get value from Innovation: Innovation is something that everyone says they want to do, but it seems increasingly clear that this desire is often rather superficial. For instance, recently I wrote about a new study from Harvard Business School showing that innovation is rarely a top priority for executives.

Barry Urquhart
Look for the facts, not the news: Headlines capture attention. However, their related news stories often have tenuous, if not occasional relationships with the facts. Increasingly, the various mass media channels feature the writings of columnists, commentators and spokespersons of interest groups, rather than objective, detached and accurate facts.

Drayton Bird
A wonderful birthday present for you: 32 years and 1 month ago, to celebrate David Ogilvy’s 75th birthday, a book called The Unpublished David Ogilvy was privately printed.

Jeff Eilertsen
Service in reverse: Building Partnerships as Customers: The common understanding of service in business today is unidirectional – focused on the service from a provider/supplier to its customer. The pressure and expectation to provide 100% satisfaction is relentless.

Amy Vetter
You’re never too old to learn: The Power of Perpetual Education “Knowledge is powerful. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.” – Kofin Annan

Yoram Solomon
Silence, White Lies, and TRUST: What if I asked you a question that you don’t feel comfortable answering? What should you do?

Paul Sloane
The wrong diagnosis means the wrong remedy: We tend to revere our clinicians as towering experts in their fields. So how often do you think doctors misdiagnose? How often might your doctor tell you that you have some illness or condition, but it’s not right?

Robert B. Tucker
Seven trends driving the future of Innovation: Kraft Heinz’ stock is down 50 percent over the past 12 months, turnover in the executive ranks has increased, and the company’s inability to keep pace with changing consumer tastes is largely to blame. In an earnings call with investors, Kraft Heinz CEO Miguel Patricio observed that “we’ve been too focused on the present, and literally on firefighting. We need to focus on our competencies for the future.”

Janet Sernack
Creating high-performing and faster-moving teams: It seems that every meeting I went to recently, and almost every person I spoke to, mentioned the new book, from the authors of How Google Works – The Trillion Dollar Coach. I dutifully ordered it and once I had the chance, diligently read it.

Mike Shipulski
Focus on the right work product and the rest will fall in place: We think we have more control than we really have. We imagine an idealized future state and try desperately to push the organization in the direction of our imagination. Add emotional energy, define a rational approach, provide the supporting rationale and everyone will see the light. Pure hubris.

Paul Matthews
NLP: A more useful way of thinking: Have you noticed that some people get consistently better results in their lives than others? Ever wondered how they do it?

Barry Urquhart
“Go figure… or is that, go refigure?” The forces and consequences of change are multi-directional. Nothing is immune to review, revision and reconstruction. Target audiences, product/service categories and sector delineations are being subjected to forensic analyses.

Soren Kaplan
How big companies and start-ups use co-creation to innovate: The latest research says “co-creation” is an untapped opportunity for innovation. Here’s how to do it.

August J. Aquila
The last challenge of Entrepreneurship: As accountants, your more traditional role is to work with the numbers and provide support to your clients in the financial area. Also, many of you are business advisors and support your clients in the growth and success of their businesses.

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