Companies often declare, “we’re going to act like entrepreneurs.” Two years later, they’re still acting like big businesses but with relaxed dress codes. And maybe a few exercise balls rolling around the corridors. Becoming entrepreneurial is all over the business press. Forbes. Techcrunch. Gallup Business Journal. But a new paper shows that the human brain might stand in the way of enterprise entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs Brains Are Different Managers and entrepreneurs brains make decisions differently. This study by Daniella Laureiro-Martínez and others using fMRI shows that entrepreneurs use their entire pre-frontal cortex when exploring opportunities, while managers use only the left side of the frontal lobe. While the public over-generalizes the specialization of the two sides, we know that thoughts that exclude the right side of the brain focus on linear, specific, concrete things, like numbers.Whole brain thinking adds more creative thoughts in the sense of considering things that aren’t yet real. The scientists watched fMRI
Just because there’s no podium protecting your genitals from the hostile audience doesn’t give you license to pace around the stage as if the only toilet for 50 miles was closed for repairs. I’m talking to you, Presenter Dude. God knows my presentation style could use some work. I stammer. I say “um.” I do other things that don’t work. And I, too, get happy feet on stage occasionally. For those flaws, I apologize. And I’m working on them. Three presentations I’ve seen recently began with a proud public service announcement warning the audience “I’m a pacer.” Proud, I tell you. As if the most important thing to remember about her is that she can’t stand still. Wandering around defeats the lighting designer’s work. Good lighting helps you, the presenter, look better, bigger, more vital. And it helps the audience. Lighting directs the eye to the focal point of the platform. Good lighting design ensures
Asking questions from your own point of view is risky. Marilee Adams, founder of the Inquiry Institute, reminds us that the quality of our answers depends on the quality of our questions. She’s right, but often we ask questions from the wrong perspective. If you hear yourself asking these five questions, you’re on the road to producing answers that miss the mark for your audience. You’re trying to solve your problem, but you’re not employing the principle of reciprocation, which states you must first benefit someone else. The 5 Dangerous Questions 1. “How can I make [audience] do [something you want]?” Would like to find out that someone is trying to “make” you do something for their benefit? Of course not. We resist coercion, and “making” someone do something is coercive. John F. Kennedy said in his inauguration address, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your
Make it easy to quit your email newsletter. Use simple, one or two-click unsubscribe. Don’t beg people to stay on your email list. Loyalty and engagement come from great products and services, not chains and shackles.
Rafi Mohammed writes for Havard Business Review. Recently, he wrote about his reasons for recommending that clients abolish their loyalty programs in all but three cases. There’s nothing wrong with writing opinion pieces on a blog. I do it all the time. As a loyalty and engagement strategist, though, I am careful to distinguish my gut opinion from my professional recommendations. When recommending a strategy, I try to cite hard evidence. I cringe when a business strategist makes recommendations based on . . . pure opinion. Mohammed arrived at his professional recommendation through a little research: he asked his mother if she’s frequents a restaurant (Subway) more often because of its loyalty program. ”No,” she told her son, “but it’s nice of them to offer it.” [source] There are two big flaws in Mohammed’s opinion of loyalty programs: the weak science he relied upon, and the strong science he ignored. Weak Science The survey method is
What happens if the march toward global-everything reverses? It’s insane not address global business. And yet . . . And yet generational historians William Strauss and Neil Howe, who have a remarkable 20-year track record of accuracy, predict that the next 15 years will see an increase in nationalism that reduces global economic ties. “[T]he economy will have changed fundamentally. Compared to today, it will be less globally dependent, with smaller cross-border trade and capital flows.” Already, we’re seeing increases in US manufacturing. In Europe, economic nationalism is on a rapid rise as Greece, Spain, Italy, and Portugal demand capital from Germany. And then there’s this slide that says by 2015, it will cheaper to produce almost anything in the US than in China.http://www.businessinsider.com/… What do you think it all means? Have we reached Peak Globalism? PROFESSOR: Wake Up Fashion Industry, We Don’t Need More Clothes http://www.businessinsider.com/professor-hey-fashion-industry-we-dont-need-… The fashion industry is mired in crisis. The global
You’re probably not paying attention to the right things. Retailomania blog posted a presentation that predicts major upheaval in retail over the next decade. Just as many great old financial names disappeared in 2008, Magnus Ohlsson, founder of MORM, predicts many venerable retail names are about to go the way of Abercrombie and Fitch . . . before it came back as a used clothing store for kids. Here are three critical points that apply to every business in every sector; 1. You don’t know who you competitors are. That’s because consumer behavior is replacing entire sectors. Newspapers and magazines have lost their relevance and their clout. Big box technology stores are disappearing. Email is where information goes to die. One-third of homes have eliminated their land line phones. Workers us Yammer to collaborate, which is why no one shows up at your meetings. 2. Size is no longer an advantage. Sure, size can sustain
Ninety percent of American workers believe that their bosses are unethical. That’s just one of the many mind-boggling finding in a study by Maritz, Inc., of St. Louis. Here’s Rick Garlick of Maritz appearing on MSNBC to discuss the alarming findings http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640 Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy At issue: values. Too often, people don’t believe what their employers’ believe. More and more people believe that naked pursuit of profit can lead people and companies astray. In his new book, Anything You Want, CD Baby founder Derek Sivers describes how one Las Vegas cabbie reveals the danger of the pure profit motive: I was in Las Vegas for a conference, taking a taxi from the airport to the hotel. I asked the driver, “How long have you lived here?” He said, “Twenty-seven years.” “Wow! A lot has changed since then, huh?” “Yeah. I miss the mob.” “Huh? Really?
Every day, people look at what their competitors are doing. Then they decide which of those activities are worth challenging. Then they create a project to match their competitors. At first, this strategy works. If my company leads the field in one or two areas, I can keep opponents in check by matching their breakthrough attempts. Over time, my strategy fails. While I’ve been busy matching opponents, someone else has ignored all of us and introduced something totally new. While many company worked on better customer profiles, gamification (Zynga, Foursquare, others) revolutionized the business. (Never saw that coming, did you?) While many brands looked for better e-commerce tools, social commerce emerged and changed everything. The good news: social commerce is easier than other kinds. That’s because we’re people, not demographics or segments. Social commerce is about buying form people you trust. Get to know people, give them reasons to trust you, and you win. Your competitors
Henry Ford refused to add a new model to his line-up of cars. The Model T came with a guarantee ROI. Investing in new models, more colors (the Model T cam in black), or even new features seemed too risky to Ford. What Ford steadfastly denied—the very essence of his denial—was that despite making the same product in the same way, his company was headed in the wrong direction. Tedlow, Richard S. (2010). Denial: Why Business Leaders Fail to Look Facts in the Face–and What to Do About It (Kindle Locations 339-340). Portfolio. Kindle Edition. Ford Motor Company nearly went out of business for lack of innovation. The Quest for ROI Are you tired of hearing about “proven ROI?” I read in magazines and hear it in interviews. “We’re only making business investment with proven ROI.” As if 20 years ago, companies bet the plant in Vegas every Saturday. Sounds