BOG BLOG : 27 JULY – 3 AUGUST 2012

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SHHHH. . .

GIBS IC has a non-shushing policy based on trust . . .

FEATURING THIS WEEK’s ARTICLES POSTED TO WCs ACROSS GIBS CAMPUS

A new book:

Entrepreneurship in the informal economy: commercial  or social entrepreneurs?   /   Colin C. Williams & Sara Nadin

Abstract   –    Recent research has revealed that a large proportion of entrepreneurs startup their ventures operating on a wholly or partially off-the-books basis. Until now, it  has been commonly assumed that those who operate in the informal economy are exclusively commercial entrepreneurs. They are assumed to be rational economic  actors who weigh up the benefits of operating off-the-books against the costs of being caught and decide to operate in this manner. The aim of this paper is to  evaluate critically this a priori assumption. Reporting evidence from a 2005/6 survey involving face-to-face interviews with 102 informal entrepreneurs in Moscow in  Russia, the finding is that such entrepreneurs are not purely commercially driven. Examining their rationales, informal  entrepreneurs are found to range from purely  rational economic actors pursuing for-profit logics through to purely social entrepreneurs pursuing purely social logics, with the majority somewhere in between combining both for-profit and social rationales. Neither do their logics remain static over time. What begins as a commercial entrepreneurial venture may become more socially oriented over time or vice versa. So too do their logics vary socio-spatially. Those living in deprived populations are more socially-orientated, whilst those in relatively affluent populations are comparatively more profit-driven. The outcome is a call for a more nuanced explanation of the complex and  heterogeneous logics of informal entrepreneurs.        Int Entrep Manag J (2012) 8:309–324         DOI 10.1007/s11365-011-0169-0
(Available from SpringerLink database  /  GoogleScholar  –  GIBS students access with student nr and PIN)

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Is business going to the dogs?  – Pooch power: What dog-friendly workplaces can do for your business  /  Denis Wilson

Meet Louie, the slobbery, four-legged officemate who taught us a few things about how to work better.

Also . . .      –   Tips on creating a dog-friendly workplace   /   Zoe Conrad

So if your company doesn’t have a dog-in-the-workplace policy and is, hopefully, considering developing one, the following tips can be used to help set up a successful dog-policy.

1. Start off with a dog-committee made up of dog owners and non-dog owners to draft a policy.
2. Dogs must be friendly to human and other dogs.
3. Make sure there are readily accessible outdoor areas for dog “breaks.”
4. Follow a dog “hire” policy where a new dog is interviewed for acceptability into the workplace.
5. Have a three strikes rule concerning behavioral breaches or human-non compliance (like not picking up after a dog), but if a dog displays aggressive behavior he/she must be removed from the office immediately.
6. Some dogs might not be “ready” for the workplace, make sure the office environment is amenable to your dog too. Fearful and shy dogs might not flourish in a busy office.
7. Basic training is a must and dogs should have a good social personality.
8. If dogs are permitted in meeting rooms, make sure your dog is well-mannered and does not cause distractions.
9. Curb barking and dogs should not be allowed to play with squeaky toys.
10. Dogs should be housebroken and receives frequent breaks.
11. Dogs should be clean, free of illness, and should be up on routine vaccinations and flea protection.
12. Introduce a dog slowly into the workplace, and introduce a new dog to the current office dogs in a neutral area, perhaps while out for a walk and not in the office itself.
13. Employees should sign a waiver and be responsible for any damage to equipment or other employees. Dogs should not chew on furniture, wiring, cords etc.
14. Checks for signs of stress in a dog, signs include excessive panting, drooling, pinned-back ears, etc.
15. Depending on the size and layout of the office, dogs can be leashed, and use of baby gates or crates can also be considered.
16. Consider a dog-free zone for employees who might have allergies or who are frightened of dogs.

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The rise of the “Connected Viewer   / Pew Internet report

Half of all adult cell phone owners now incorporate their mobile devices into their television watching experiences. These “connected viewers” used their cell phones for a wide range of activities during the 30 days preceding our April 2012 survey:
• 38% of cell owners used their phone to keep themselves occupied during commercials or breaks in something they were watching
• 23% used their phone to exchange text messages with someone else who was watching the same program in a different location
• 22% used their phone to check whether something they heard on television was true
• 20% used their phone to visit a website that was mentioned on television
• 1% used their phone to see what other people were saying online about a program they were watching, and 11% posted their own comments online about a program they were watching using their mobile phone
• 6% used their phone to vote for a reality show contestant

Taken together, 52% of all cell owners are “connected viewers”—meaning they use their phones while watching television for at least one of these reasons

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Be deliberately disruptive to achieve growth  /  Monique Verduyn 

Excerpt . . .

Raynor’s The Innovator’s Manifesto contains new research showing how disruption theory is unique in its ability to help managers predict the success or failure of a company or product. He explains why disruption theory is so powerful — and provides the roadmap managers need — to use disruption theory to shape new products and ventures in their own industries in ways that make ultimate success possible.  Use disruption theory to shape ideas and strategy, and identify or create new opportunities.

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Public – Private – Partnerships –  A gold-medal partnership   /   Michael Payne

The Olympic Games demonstrate what government and business can accomplish as a team.

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WSJ reports on HBS libraries, via LJ INFOdocket by Gary Price on 7/31/12

From the WSJ:

As it looks to economize, Harvard has turned some of its attention toward the more than $160 million it spends each year on its nearly 375 year-old library system, which holds 17 million volumes, and includes 73 separate libraries. Widener, the flagship library, alone has 57 miles of shelving. While the system has been a “precious asset to the university for many, many years,” Harvard has “also spent more on libraries than we’ve really needed to to accomplish our goal,” said Mr. Garber, the provost.  Harvard is also changing its philosophy on owning books. The goal: Provide access to them rather than collecting each one, which can lead to costs for storage and preservation, a 2009 Harvard task-force report said. The library will extend partnerships to borrow from other libraries, and further digitize its own collection so it can share with others.

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FREAKONOMICS RADIO  –  Olympian economics   –  podcast

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Libraries: A digital bridge | Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, via Stephen’s Lighthouse by admin on 7/30/12

 Watch the video

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QUOTE OF THE WEEK  –  from  HARVARD

“After the plan was announced (… by HBS  to cut library funding)  in February, library supporters picketed, holding signs with messages such as $32 billion in the bank? No layoffs.” 

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Brag rights for GIBS ! – 3  GIBS  research reports  in  TOP 20 UPeTD hits for July 2012

Nr 1 = 19, 324 hits

Variawa, Ebrahim Buying behaviour and decision-making criteria of Base of the Pyramid consumers : the influence of packaging on fast moving consumer goods customers’ brand experience –  MBA Gordon Institute of Business Science 2010

 Nr 12 = 9223 hits

Masinge, Khumbula Factors influencing the adoption of mobile banking services at the Bottom of the Pyramid in South Africa  – MBA Gordon Institute of Business Science 2010

 Nr 13 =  8796 hits

Pillay, Seelan A critical analysis of the role of stakeholder engagement in establishing the renewable energy sector in South Africa –  MBA Gordon Institute of Business Science 2010

WELL DONE ALL!

 

BOG BLOG : 29 JUNE – 6 JULY 2012

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KeepClam

Some encouragement . . . November hand-in is looming

Business school buzz  / BusinessInsider.com

Picking the right business school is more important than ever. The right school gives you an advantage in a tough market. The wrong school could be a critical waste of time and money. Our survey has determined that the best program out there is Stanford Business School. Harvard, which held the top spot for the past two years, came in a close second, with Wharton in third. Our results are based on an extensive survey of the people who matter most to your future: real professionals. Over one thousand of our readers responded, of which 87 percent had attended business school and 71 percent had hiring experience. Many respondents said a network of contacts was the most important thing you get out of business school (43 percent); while others named the skills & knowledge acquired in courses (34 percent) or the brand value associated with a school (23 percent). Besides the usual top American contenders, more international schools ranked in the top 10 category this year, with London Business School coming in at #5 and INSEAD ranking at #10. Respondents also suggested that we include other international schools next year, like Cambridge (Judge Business School), the Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University, the Indian Institute of Management, the Indian School of Business and The University of Hong Kong (HKU).

 

You can resist an invading army  –  you cannot resist an idea whose time has come.

 *** Victor Hugo (1802-1885) French writer ***

 

 

Three essential elements for powerful workplace team huddles / by  Enviable Workplace

It’ no big secret here at EW we are big fans of Zappos culture. Today, culture hacker and former Zappos Insights Culture Evangelist, Donavon Roberson, explains in detail how to run team huddles , or Team Zuddles (Zappos Huddle). Businesses can take a page out of this playbook and start using the huddle in their regular operations to create a similar experience for the team. Let’s take a moment to look the 3 elements that make up a powerful huddle:

 1. Communicate vision: There is nothing more important in business today then communicating the shared vision of a team and insuring that you support that vision regularly. Too many businesses write out a vision or value statement and display it somewhere on the wall for all to see. Many times these posters get lost with all of the other artwork that is hanging around the office. In order to ensure that a vision statement makes it from the head of the employees to the heart of the employees that statement must be communicated on a regular basis. The huddle is a great place for the leader to speak to the existing vision, to cast new vision and to inspire the team to embrace the journey ahead. This can be done intentionally by using the huddle as an opportunity to directly speak to the various aspects of the vision OR by simply using ‘vision language’ throughout the huddle.

 2. Provide Clarity: Many times teams get sidelined or derailed because there is confusion regarding the individual roles and how those roles play out to accomplishing the vision. Having a regular time for the team to huddle provides clarity on who’s doing what and how that responsibility is adding value to the larger picture; unclear expectations and unclear directives will destroy a team and will kill productivity, creativity, and innovation. A way to make this efficient and effective is to allow each team member the opportunity to share what they are working on and what obstacles they may be experiencing. This allows for exposure, accountability, and the opportunity for members to help each other accomplish tasks that may require extra support.

3. Demonstrate Unity: The basic structure of a team assumes unity but often times this unity gets lost as star performers begin to do their part to make the business better and further their personal careers. To ensure that everyone on the team understand the importance of the team, regular huddles where everybody speaks to their part of the team becomes an invaluable resource.

ZAPPOS 

How do you check your company culture promotes productivity? –  If you’ve ever had a chance to see a video or take a tour of Zappos, it’s a wonder how work gets done. Because you’re looking around and there’s cow bells going off and people with Nerf guns and you think it’s a circus. But at the same time everything is getting done. It;s this whole idea of making your employees more happy and they’ll be more productive. There’s the common surveys and managers supervising to make sure that at the end of the day these things are getting done.  A look inside Zappos Office life (video created by the staff):  By letting go and seeing people be true to who they are;¦ people ask, how do you hire so many people that are smiling? How do you get them to smile? And at the end of the day you hire the people that are smiling and not the ones that you have to train to smile because that’s an untrainable thing to do.  You can connect with Jenn and the Delivering Happiness Team on their website or on their Facebook or Twitter. 

Four concepts for the future that could create a more sustainable world  /  Fastcoexist

In the next 15 years, the course of human society will be drastically altered by new technologies that we can’t even dream of. But, with enough planning now, we can push the development of those technologies toward those that make life better. These four ideas will help us get there. Earlier this year, Sony teamed up with the Forum of the Future to brainstorm four scenarios of what life will be like in 2025. Among them: a treadmill of “hyperinnovation” and declining carbon emissions; a scenario of damaging climate change and reactive technologies (like solar paint); a scenario where sustainability and strong community ties are emphasized; and a world where the sharing economy has taken off on a global scale. Now Sony and a handful of partners have come up with four concepts–a platform, a product, a place, and a philosophy–that could exist within and take advantage of these visions of the future 15 years from now.

Excerpt . . .

The Internet of Things Academy –  In the future, it’s possible that nearly everything will have an IP address–your clothes, your plants, and your refrigerator will all freely send and receive data. The proposed Internet of Things Academy will teach people to use the hardware and software behind this connected world, allowing them to do everything from creating experimental economic models to public health monitoring initiatives.

Wandular –  This cloud-connected, modular device will stay with users for a lifetime, “generating a similar sort of affection and sense of personal connection as a favorite watch,” according to Sony’s brief.

HyperVillage  – The world is on track to have 75% of all humanity living in cities by 2050. What happens to the other 25%? Sony envisions the HyperVillage–a completely self-reliant but globally connected community “underpinned by the highest spec software and hardware.” 

The Shift – is more of a question than anything else. Sony asks, “Is it time to re-focus society’s relationship with technology so that it genuinely meets human needs?

 TMT Predictions 2012      /   Deloitte report

We are pleased to present the new edition of our Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions report.  This annual publication presents Deloitte’s view of the major trends over the next 12-18 months that are likely to have significant medium to long term impacts for companies in Technology, Media and Telecommunications and other industries. In its 11th year, the TMT Predictions report is our most anticipated research publication.  In these fast-paced, ever developing global industries, knowing what will come next in TMT trends has become a key competitive differentiator. Our goal is to catalyse discussions around important topics that may require companies or government to respond. What impact might a fragile economy have on demand for consumer technology? When will TV adverts start becoming targeted? How can MRI machines be used in media market research, and will 2012 bring the end of unlimited, all-you-can-eat data plans? 

Newism  /  Trendwatching.com 

Excerpt . . . 

Definition:  The ‘new’  has never been hotter, as the entire world, from emerging to mature economies, is now creating new products, services and experiences on a daily, if not hourly basis, in every B2C industry. Which moves ‘new’ from being a tired marketing ploy by ‘old’  brands (‘new and improved!’), to a genuine, exciting proposition for consumers. 

An introvert’s guide to networking / Lisa Petrilli  

. . .  the critical importance of networking, and discovered my natural aversion to it, early in my career. I was a new college graduate working in the strategic planning division of a $10 billion company, and our business unit had been invited to a retirement party for one of the top executives. The gentleman retiring was someone I’d looked up to during my brief tenure, and I wanted him to know he’d made an impact on me.