A good reminder on management vs leadership, especially at times of crisis.
In management, there are only 3 things you can control: quality, time and money When you choose one, the other two will suffer. You cannot manage people.
If you take a chain, pile it up and then push it, what direction will it go? Nowhere you can predict and not very far. If you take it by the end and pull it, which way will it go? It will follow you.
Leadership is not about what sets you apart from those you lead—it’s about what binds you together. It is not about controlling others—it’s about trusting others. It’s not about your achievements—it’s about unleashing your team’s greatness.
In short, leadership really isn’t about you. It’s about your people.
We are in one of the most disruptive period in history right now. The coronavirus has come through and absolutely annihilated some of today's biggest industries.
The 3 industries that are likely to be wiped out are:
1. Movie theaters
2. Departmental store
3. Office space operators
To attract top talent in today’s market, companies need to upgrade their recruiting skills, and their culture. Here are 4 key insights:
1. Companies can’t just adopt 21st-century job titles; they need 21st-century working practices and a company culture to match.
2. Today’s top talent wants meaningful work, opportunities to develop and grow, and flexible working conditions.
3. Employers can’t wait for new talent to find them; they have to go after the best candidates.
4. To attract and retain new talent, including diverse hires, companies need to work on organization-wide culture change or create silos where new cultures and talent can flourish.
The coronavirus epidermic in China presents an opportunity for entrepreneurs to retool themselves and prepare for the growth that lies ahead when the outbreak subsides. “Reflect on what you really want, what you have and what you need to give up, or stick to,” Ma said.
Ma told students to “learn digital working methods” and “adopt internet technology.”
Alibaba launched its Taobao online shopping platform in 2003 when China was locked down during a nationwide outbreak of Sars.
Ma also channelled Kyocera Corporation’s founder Kazuo Inamori, whose management and leadership turned the television component maker into one of Japan’s largest companies.
Inamori had five strategies for companies during times of recession, according to Ma:
Strategy One: Every employees should turn to sales
Every employee should turn to sales, to arouse latent demand among clients, Ma cited Inamori in saying. "Even in a company with tip-top technology, selling a product is still the foundation of the company's operation," Inamori said. "It is impossible to get orders during recessions if employees lack the spirit in making all-out efforts for clients."
Strategy Two: Spare no effort to develop new products
A recession is a golden opportunity for companies to innovate and expand sales. "Clients are too free during a recession. They will also propose new ideas after listening to yours. This would create orders that you never imagined before, so that you can expand your business."
Strategy Three: Radical cost cuts
Recession is the only chance to cut costs, as every employee would strive to make it happen, Inamori said. "You need to lower the break-even point of the whole company by making efforts to reduce production costs," Inamori said. "If a company can maintain profitability when the turnover is halved, it would be even more profitable when sales returns to normal."
Strategy Four: Maintain high production rate Companies should maintain their usual high productivity rate even in times of recession, by reassigning excess labour from the production line to other tasks to maintain the cadence and vibe of the work cycle. "Once productivity drops, it would not be easy to restore," Inamori said.
Strategy Five: Establish favourable interpersonal relations
"The most important thing for managing a company is the relationship between the manager and employees," Inamori said, adding that employers must "love and protect" employees, while employees need to understand the manager, they need to help and support each other.
Read more here.
Thomas Cook’s rescue plan would have probably made it the “best-funded travel company in Europe,” but the UK government’s failure to offer a last-minute financial guarantee effectively brought about its collapse, according to testimony at an inquiry into the firm’s insolvency.
Read more on 5 Takeaways from UK's Thomas Cook Inquiry.
What caused the collapse of Thomas Cook? Read here.
Growth is a journey that requires the entire business to constantly adjust, optimize and execute, but it starts at the top. Only when the CEO, C-suite, and business-unit leaders have the right mind-set can leaders hope to drive growth across the business.
Growth is the number one, two and three priority.
A new survey by McKinsey highlights what separates growth leaders from the pack. Here are the seven statements that reflect the convictions of today’s growth leaders:
1. I'm all in
Always put growth first. Growth leaders put growth at the top of every agenda, from board meetings to performance reviews.
2. I'm willing to fail
Make plenty of bets. Growth leaders make more growth bets than their peers. They create a portfolio of initiatives, protecting the necessary resources and funding.
3. I know my customer as a person, not as a data point
Growth leaders are resolute, however, in putting the customer at the center of all their decisions. An executive at a global apparel brand admitted, “Whenever I’m in meetings and being presented with options to decide on, my first question is "What’s in it for the customer?"
4. I favor action over perfection
Act on “good enough” insights. Good data are crucial for good decisions, but growth leaders value speed over perfect insights. They don’t wait for perfect data. Instead, they use the data they have to make a thoughtful decision, pursue it vigorously, and then reevaluate based on results.
5. I fight for growth
Break down internal barriers. Growth is a team sport, but functional leaders often jealously guard their turf, which undermines many promising initiatives. Growth leaders actively seek out the conflicts and eliminate them. They break down silos, diffuse turf battles, and provide support for strained resources to clear the path for their teams to deliver.
6. I have a growth story I tell all the time
Infuse the business with purpose. Growth leaders know that purpose is power and that communication is about more than "the what" of growth; it’s "the why". Articulating a purpose that goes beyond brands, categories, and businesses is an effective way that growth leaders rally the whole organization.
7. I give control to others
Build up people’s growth muscles. Growth leaders invest more time in formal and informal training for growth, covering not just functional and leadership capabilities but also mind-sets.
Read more here.
Here are some of the most significant digital transformation in 2020 and beyond:
Read more here.
It’s the best of times and the worst of times to be a business owner. For many, the promise of a liquidity event represents the culmination of their life’s work. But how do you optimize your valuation or determine the ideal timing of the event?
Here are 10 steps to optimise the value of your company:
1. Start with the end in mind
Think like a buyer would. In addition to a growth plan, a buyer will want to understand the strategic value your company adds to their portfolio, the diversity of income and customers, and the likelihood that management will stay (which may matter less to a strategic buyer than to a financial buyer).
2. Include your team in the process
Many private company owners are skittish about sharing information regarding a potential exit with their management teams. Whether it is appropriate to do so is dependent on a number of variables, including the sophistication of the team. Senior managers are going to find out eventually, and utilizing their talents to drive valuation is often a success factor. Handcuffing them through a long-term incentive plan (LTIP) is an important best practice (as opposed to providing them equity). It’s is just good business to reward the people who get you there.
3. Focus on the growth story
The single most important variable in optimizing value is being able to demonstrate consistent, predictable revenue void of too much concentration risk in a few customers. The business owner must maintain laser focus on growth in the three to five years before the sale. Any buyer will want proof that the business can “scale.”
4. Secure the right advisers early
Many business owners talk to wealth advisers, strategic planning consultants, transactional attorneys and investment bankers late in the process. Create a team of advisers who can collaborate for several years in advance and have the pieces in place when you are ready to sell to optimize your valuation. Assign a “quarterback” to drive a seamless process.
5. Formalize your exit plan
After you have met with your team and advisers, formalize your company’s strategic plan and exit plan. Your exit will need to coincide with a succession plan. Note that a majority of “earn out” consulting agreements do not pan out. While there may be tax benefits to having a consulting agreement post-transaction, make sure you understand their limitations when you’re trying to optimize your valuation.
6. Understand valuation
Every business owner thinks their business is worth more than it actually is. Get an expert business valuation done, in part to set the basis for your long-term incentive plan.
7. Minimize tax liability
Too many owners wait far too long to consider their tax liability during a transaction, and they end up giving away a sizable chunk of their gain in taxes. The right advisers may have you consider relocation for the business or the owner, or other tax-mitigating strategies such as forming an ESOP. This is why a CPA who knows M&A is so critical to optimize your valuation.
8. Ensure you have solid financial statements
A fatal flaw that will end a process before it begins is a lack of financial controls. Buyers will immediately discount any company that does not have solid financial statements and performance for at least three years.
9. Be patient
Selling in a down cycle can be costly. Waiting until you have assembled the right team, advisers and financial history can dramatically increase valuation. As private equity becomes interested at about $5 million in EBITDA, crossing this threshold is important in maximizing value
10. Develop your life plan
Owners often have a sizable portion of their financial wealth wrapped up in their businesses and make invalid assumptions about the cost of retirement.
Source: Marc Emmer. Read more by clicking at the image below:
1. Master a skill, scale it, build a community 0:25
1a. Build a platform for others that have skills 0:51
1b. Start online courses/webinars 1:54
2. Clean people's homes 3:08
3. Amazon Fulfilment business 4:07
4. Meal preparation and delivery 5:02
5. Rent bikes/mopeds 5:46
6. Fitness trainer (online or in-person) 6:33
7. Certified Public Accountant 7:27
8. Leadership skills 8:04
According to public speaking expert Neil Gordon, this is because most of us tend to stuff our talks full of information. You're taught to use acronyms, have steps and processes, fill your latest marketing deck with complicated charts ... and so you do.
Gordon says this is a mistake. "Most people think the reason why the most-viewed TED talks have been seen so many millions of times is because they're the most jaw-dropping, fascinating, ingenious, inspiring, or funniest talks," Gordon offers. "But it's not actually any of those things."
So what is it? What is the secret sauce?
"What they have," he says, "is a fully distilled idea that pervades the entire talk."
In other words, they have one big idea. Not several ideas. Not a list of seven ways to get more [blank] to do [blank].
No, they have one single, central, unifying theme. Gordon calls it a "silver bullet."
Shared office provider, WeWork, has filed paperwork to enable it to list its shares on the US stock market as it seeks further funds for expansion.
Founded in the US in 2010, WeWork is already London and New York's largest private office occupier.
But it has yet to make a profit, with losses last year doubling to USD1.9 billion.
The firm's business model is based on short-term revenue agreements and long-term loan liabilities.
Ratings agencies have given it a "junk" or risky credit score because it has borrowed heavily to fund its expansion.
Despite this, the firm - which operates in 600 cities globally - was valued at some USD47 billion by private investors when it raised fresh funding in January.
Source: BBC, UK
Salary guide for accounting and finance professionals in Malaysia 2018 / 2019:
Source: Kelly Services, Malaysia
A simple explanation of machine learning (ML). You don't need a Phd or even a degree to use ML, just use it.
Response and ability. Good leaders get people to believe in them. Great leaders inspire people to believe in themselves.
We’ve been hearing the statement “Health is wealth” since our childhood. However, not all of us are acquainted with its literal meaning. It means that no matter how wealthy you are, if we are not healthy, there is nothing we can cherish in life.
People are suffering from overweight, obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart diseases, kidney problems and so many other unknown problems. Most of these problems occur because of our lifestyle.
Money means nothing when it doesn’t afford you the time and means to spend it on yourself and your loved ones. Staying healthy therefore becomes a necessity. Even a little money is sufficient, if you have your health support your run with good times.
Here are 5 tips to stay healthy (and wealthy):
1. Eat well (eat everything in moderation)
2. Sleep well
3. Exercise, exercise, exercise
4. Breath fresh air (spend more time outdoor)
5. Drink lots of water
Digital disruption is much more than an abstract concept promoted by analysts and vendors; it is now a reality for most organizations.
More than one-third of executives in a recent Forbes Insights/Treasure Data survey say they are being directly affected by competition from digital and data-savvy players in their markets.
What does it take to embark on a data-driven disruption journey? Here are some ways to get started:
1. Creating new markets or leveraging the power of information to offer solutions in new ways.
2. Be the disruptor.
The best way to fend off disruptors is to become the disruptor. Shift their business models using data-driven products and services, or by linking up with digital-savvy players.
3. Surface your data assets.
With the influx of data that an increasingly digital world creates about customers, access to clearly organized, consolidated data is crucial. Think of ways to create entirely new products or services through new channels.
The most likely form of disruption is through the actual monetizing of information technology.
The disruption that is radically reshaping today’s markets, as well as creating new ones, is driven by data, with the goal of enriching the customer experience, and delivering goods and services on demand without so much as a hiccup in supply chains or response systems. To accomplish this, data needs to move fast, seamlessly and be accessible.
As Holger Hürtgen and Niko Mohr, of McKinsey, recently put it:
“Data has become the new corporate asset class, and the best way for companies to generate and access it is to digitize everything they do"
Those organizations leading the way and digitally disrupting their markets have learned to employ customer data in new and innovative ways not simply to be disruptors, but to provide superior customer experiences.
Source: Forbes Insights (click on image to read more)
He is more popular on social media than Madonna or Oprah Winfrey, but you might never have heard of him. Kai-Fu Lee has become the face of Chinese tech, his name synonymous with a country itching to take on the world.
Lee spent his formative years helping charter a path of innovation for companies such as Microsoft and Apple, but it was when he spearheaded a failed attempt to bring Google to China that everything changed for him. Lee left Google in 2009, to set up his own venture capital fund, Sinovation Ventures.
Lee's new book, AI Super Powers, was published in September.
“The Chinese model is about building an incredibly high wall so that no one can replicate or start a price war. It’s about detail orientation, operational excellence, having a huge market, having instantaneous feedback from the market, iterating so many times that it becomes innovative. And I think that is the spirit. I think the copying was the way it started.”
Here is a good summary of the future of AI according to Lee:
In his first internal management strategy speech since being named Jack Ma's successor, Alibaba Group Holding chief executive Daniel Zhang Yong reminded managers in the company that key performance indicators (KPI) should never be the sole reason to do something.
“If we live for KPIs, and do something just for the sake of KPIs, then Alibaba is finished,”
Zhang reminded employees that the company's dream is to create value for the customers they serve.
He also exhorted employees to do their best to meet their own expectations, instead of caring what others think, and not give up when they meet resistance or obstacles – especially when it came to new business models and innovative projects that have not been tried before.
“Many of our businesses have been the same for over 10 years, and if we keep doing things the same way today, or five years later, then Alibaba won't have a future,” Zhang said, adding that his greatest fear was that Alibaba would become like a “robot on loop”.
Data Studio, Google’s free data visualization and reporting product, is out of beta and now generally available.
This move signifies our continued commitment to helping teams identify and share insights from their data, so they can take steps to improve business outcomes.
Since introducing Data Studio as a beta in 2016, we’ve improved the stability of the product and added many key features. We’ve seen millions of people use Data Studio to transform their data into powerful stories that surface key business insights.
Companies like AirAsia Group are using Data Studio to help with cross-platform reporting and collaboration between teams. "Data Studio helps to keep AirAsia data flowing through the organization,” says Nikunj Shanti, Chief Data Officer, AirAsia. “Data democratization is the key for future efficiencies within the airline and the integration between Data Studio and BigQuery data sources help ensure that everyone has a single view. The platform has rapidly evolved in the last 12 months, and we’re able to sunset existing production and ensure we have a single platform for data dashboard and ad-hoc visualization."
Today’s announcement of general availability comes on the heels of many product updates based on beta user feedback. Most recently we announced a number of new features that enhance the way you can experiment, combine, and share your data visualizations using Explorer, Data Blending and the Report Gallery.
We remain dedicated to our community and have developed capabilities like community connectors, which allows you to connect to your many different data sources, and custom report templates, which enables you to build custom reports and easily share your solutions. Features like these have helped grow our ecosystem and make Data Studio more impactful for more people.
Data Studio’s mission is to empower people to identify and share insights from their data, whether it’s a marketer surfacing information about which of their advertising channels is most effective, or a business analyst tracking performance metrics.
We look forward to continuing to explore that mission alongside our community of users and collaborators. And as we invest in platform stability and advanced features, you'll be able to focus on what matters, the growth of your business.
Source: Google Data Studio
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