Tag Archives: Best Practices

Four Ways to Build Better Budgets – HBR

Actually, unless you are a brand new startup, budgeting and planning for future is well under way for 2013.   If you haven’t started or need some help, this is a good points article.

Excerpt:  It’s that time of year again: Budgeting and planning for next year are in full swing. Everyone has been through this process. At one end of the spectrum is the struggling business unit that unveils the miraculous “hockey stick” trajectory their sales and profits are just about to take…again. (Don’t bet on it.) At the other end are high-performing business units that are starved of the resources they need in order to fund growth because they are subsidizing another business unit’s hockey stick.

Through hundreds of sessions like these across dozens of industries, we’ve identified four best practices to make your budgeting and planning process much more effective and less dependent on illusory projections.

Read full article via Four Ways to Build Better Budgets – Jason Green – Harvard Business Review.

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New Marketing Rules: When Social Media Spins Out of Control – Knowledge@Australian School of Business

More information and advice as we progressively establish the best practices of this new world of ours.

Excerpt:  Marketers are in a spin following the Advertising Standards Board (ASB) ruling that brands are responsible for user comments posted on their Facebook pages, and an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) warning that court action can result for larger organisations if inappropriate material is not removed quickly. What do the rulings mean for the future? To what extent can companies control what customers and advertisers say on their Facebook pages or on other social media?

Read full article via New Marketing Rules: When Social Media Spins Out of Control – Knowledge@Australian School of Business.

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How to Increase eCommerce Conversions during the 2012 Holiday Season

Good detail and examples in this how-to article for all ecommerce.

Excerpt:  Even though it’s just now October, this is the time to start thinking about ways to attract shoppers and boost conversions over the upcoming holidays. Competition is going to be fierce, particularly online where offers of free shipping have consistently trumped all other holiday promotions in the past. Online retailers have set the bar for what gets customers to convert, and they are considering sweetening the deal with free returns as well.

But even with these best practices in place, what else can you do to make sure your holiday ecommerce launches are a success? Here are a few up and coming trends to consider:

Read full article via How to Increase eCommerce Conversions during the 2012 Holiday Season. From KISSmetrics

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How to Build Trust in a Virtual Workplace – HBR

I think in most workplaces today, there are the challenges of bringing together inhouse and virtual team members.  This is a good read on how to establish the needed “trust” factor in all team members.

Excerpt:  Teams can’t function well when co-workers don’t trust one another. Building and maintaining trust in the traditional, physical workplace is difficult enough, but the process is even tougher in a virtual environment, where people often have to work with people they haven’t met in person.

Some biologists believe that we are hardwired to distrust everyone except our own family members. Studies have shown, however, that trust can indeed be actively accelerated and maintained on virtual teams even when they have to be assembled on the fly with employees scattered across the globe. According to our research, the following best practices will help:

Read full article via How to Build Trust in a Virtual Workplace – Keith Ferrazzi – Harvard Business Review.

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Preparing For Mobile, It’s About More Than MDM

Good article   —   and again, it is a wealth of information as we form best practices in our new to learn areas  —  in this instance, mobile.

Excerpt:  …….  because they’ve not yet figured out the proper way to manage mobility. Many focus on the device, and as a side-effect keep their users toting the equivalent of graphing calculators, others feel there are not yet market-ready tools to mitigate the risk from devices, their apps and the many different user types inside their organizations.

It’s Time For A Comprehensive Approach, The Mobile Control Plane

What’s lacking isn’t the technology to manage mobile users and their devices, it’s an understanding of how it should be applied. Over the past two years, as we’ve seen mobile penetration double in the US mobile phone owning population, the market for mobility management solutions has been awash in promises of cure-alls.

Read full article via Preparing For Mobile, It’s About More Than MDM « Make Mobile Work.

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Get Started with Big Data: Tie Strategy to Performance – HBR

Good read and takeaway how-to.  Big Data for many is overwhelming, particularly when it comes to management and utilization.  However, in order to remain competitive, we need to develop best practices and the more information we have of “discovered” tips and advice, the better.

Excerpt:  Large-scale data gathering and analytics are quickly becoming a new frontier of competitive differentiation. In a recent Harvard Business Review article we explore how companies require three mutually supportive capabilities to fully exploit data and analytics: an ability to identify and manage multiple sources of data, the capacity to build advanced analytic models, and the critical management muscle to transform the organization.

Getting started on a successful data and analytics journey, however, is a continuing challenge for many leaders and they often struggle for a clear strategy that ties data and analytics to improved performance. We took a close look at companies that have recently launched big data strategies to shed further light on the tough road C-level executives face. From these experiences, we have distilled four principles to defining a strategy and getting started:

Read full article via Get Started with Big Data: Tie Strategy to Performance – Dominic Barton and David Court – Harvard Business Review.

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Metrics Are Easy; Insight Is Hard – HBR

I doubt anyone would argue with this point  —  we are all still looking for best practices in the evolution of Big Data metrics and utilization.  For all leadership and management

Excerpt:  Big data is great. But we should consider that we’ve actually had more data than we can reasonably use for a while now. Just on the marketing front, it isn’t uncommon to see reports overflowing with data and benchmarks drawn from millions of underlying data points covering existing channels like display, email, website, search, and shopper/loyalty — and new data streams such as social and mobile engagement, reviews, comments, ratings, location check-ins and more.

In contrast to this abundant data, insights are relatively rare. Insights here are defined as actionable, data-driven findings that create business value. They are entirely different beasts from raw data. Delivering them requires different people, technology, and skills — specifically including deep domain knowledge. And they’re hard to build.

Even with great data and tools, insights can be exceptionally tough to come by

Read full article via Metrics Are Easy; Insight Is Hard – Irfan Kamal – Harvard Business Review.

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The State Of Customer Analytics 2012 | Forrester Blogs

Recommended for all small business.  More on business intelligence challenges and best practices.

Excerpt:  Forrester defines customer analytics as:

“The set of methods, tools, and technologies used to analyze customer data – where the goal is to inform customer acquisition and retention, enhance customer relationships, and drive customer profitability.”

To better understand The State Of Customer Analytics 2012, Forrester analyst Srividya Sridharan surveyed 90 customer analytics professionals from around the world about their customer analytics practices.

Download podcast here via TechnoPolitics Podcast: The State Of Customer Analytics 2012 | Forrester Blogs.

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Use Cases For Specific BI Tools | Forrester Blogs

Great list to begin your task — business intelligence tools: what do I need and what should I use?  Steps to equal how-to

Excerpt:  I get the following question very often. What are the best practices for creating an enterprise reporting policy as to when to use what reporting tool/application? Alas, as with everything else in business intelligence, the answer is not that easy. The old days of developers versus power users versus casual users are gone. The world is way more complex these days. In order to create such a policy, you need to consider the following dimensions:

Read full list via Use Cases For Specific BI Tools | Forrester Blogs.

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Corporate Director Elections and Majority Withhold Votes — The Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance

I guess even with oodles of experience,  I am  —  or perhaps, just prefer to be   —   naive.  Every time I read of rules and regulations that are largely show and rarely to never come to the fore unless the brown stuff hits the fan,  I marvel at our many systems of “it is” , at least, “until it is not”.   Since I am one of the most independent creatures one might meet, I am not advocating a totalitarian system or anarchy but isn’t there some better ground than the one upon which we stand?

Excerpt:  In theory, the most significant corporate governance check and balance between public company shareowners and the company is the ability to elect corporate directors. In reality, that control mechanism is complicated and often compromised for a host of reasons. Nonetheless, there has been an increased focus on director elections in the past few years. This study examines what happens when shareowners withhold a majority of votes from a director nominee.

The significance of majority withhold votes for corporate directors is the subject of some debate in the governance and business community. It is sometimes argued that majority withhold votes are of little import because they are infrequent, rarely lead to director resignations, and typically come in response not to corporate-specific failings, but to violations of perceived best practice (such as the adoption of a poison pill without shareholder approval). At the same time, however, some academic literature has suggested that high levels of withhold votes may be an indicator of generally negative market perceptions of a company.

Read full article via Corporate Director Elections and Majority Withhold Votes — The Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation.

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Streamline Your Efforts With Social Media Systems : Innovation :: AMEX

Check out three social media workplace systems outlined in this article — providing how-to and task solutions within the workplace, including the one in excerpt below is for physicians  ….  Our doctors are getting their own chat, learn and collaborate space …  sounds like a winner to me.

Excerpt:  The use of social media in the workplace is a burgeoning area of development for companies creating apps and platforms to boost employee productivity. According to USA Today, the global market for these and similar workplace tools is expected to grow to a $4.5 billion sector by 2016. It was pegged at about $767 million in 2011. Social media for business is not just about how to get workers to be more productive, though. It’s also about fostering new collaborations and increased creativity. Check out these three examples of how social media is fostering connectivity and bringing colleagues together brand new ways. ………

Doximity: A more specialized example of how social media platforms are penetrating the workplace is Doximity. Think of it as something akin to Facebook for health care professionals. With it, your doctor can plug into an online web of other physicians. Specialists and those in primary care can trade notes, records and other kinds of information. Beyond that, Doximity hopes to become a forum among health care professionals for the exchange of best practices. And there’s a commercial incentive for participants as well: to promote one’s services to the medical network at large

Read full article via Streamline Your Efforts With Social Media Systems : Innovation :: American Express OPEN Forum.

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How to Manage a Global Supply Chain

More great small business takeaways this morning — global supply chain businesses’ best practices.  Recommended.

Excerpt:  Executives at Flextronics, Lubrizol and A. Schulman reveal best practices that allow them to expand their operations globally, while bringing their customers along for the ride.

Read full article via How to Manage a Global Supply Chain | Supply Chain content from IndustryWeek.

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Principles of Corporate Governance 2012 — The Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance

Small business leadership, governance and management recommended read with takeaways of -interest, how-to, need-to-know and news-to-watch.

Excerpt:  Business Roundtable continues to believe, as we noted in Principles of Corporate Governance (2005), that the United States has the best corporate governance, financial reporting and securities markets systems in the world. These systems work because of the adoption of best practices by public companies within a framework of laws and regulations that establish minimum requirements while affording companies the ability to develop individualized practices that are appropriate for them. Even in the challenging times posed by the ongoing difficult economic environment, corporations have continued to work proactively to refine their governance practices, and develop new practices, as conditions change and “best practices” continue to evolve.

Given the fundamental nature of the changes that have occurred during the past decade in the framework of laws and regulations related to corporate governance, in the economy, and in best practices, Business Roundtable believes it is appropriate, once again, to restate our guiding principles of corporate governance.

Read full article via Principles of Corporate Governance 2012 — The Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation.

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Book Review: Reverse Innovation

An indepth book review on Reverse Innovation.  There are small business takeaways within, but the small business challenges are not directly addressed, which would make the book even more valuable.  Although there are good points, too much content resembles an overview of western innovation with mention of there is a difference.  Anyone read this book and care to comment?

Excerpt:  Though not a new concept, “reverse innovation” is hardly straight-forward in practice. Govindarajan and Trimble’s showcasing of successful projects, Fortune 500-type best practice and essential theory in the field endeavors to lay down a modus operandi, yet one which lacks a lasting echo. In this review Jeffrey Phillips argues that despite its good intentions, the book seems to cater only to multinationals, ignoring the needs of small/mid-sized players whose drive is high, yet resources low. Reverse innovation requires a different mind-set, workflow and altogether pace for socially and economically consistent results to emerge.

Read book review via Book Review: Reverse Innovation | Innovation Management.

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Best Practices for Leading via Innovation – HBR

Good read and the article gives you 5 clearly defined tips to best practices innovation.   Small business takeaways.

Excerpt:  Beyond strong financial performance, the top 20 BCL companies have something else in common. In an era of intense globalization, rapid demographic change and accelerating technological progress, the best companies for leadership recognize the value of innovation, putting it at the heart of their corporate culture and using this targeted, focused innovation to drive shareholder value and improve efficiency.

Which companies populate the top 20? Every year, we see some familiar names including GE (#1 the last three years), P&G (#2 this year and last year), McDonald’s and Coca-Cola. But some of the most interesting examples of innovation come from new additions to the BCL Top 20 list. These examples illustrate five practices that any company can adopt to create a culture of innovation:

Read full article via Best Practices for Leading via Innovation – Rick Lash – Harvard Business Review.

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