Take the Big Data Pregnancy Test

photo credit: Adam Schilling via photopin cc

photo credit: Adam Schilling via photopin cc

Today, leading Big Data companies such as Walmart can for instance access every receipt issued since 1999. This allows Walmart detailed insights into customer behaviour and leads to adapted positioning for goods in one example: The company now positions beer next to baby nappies since fathers shopping for nappies are more likely to drink at home than go to the pub.

One famous example of how insightful data can be, was the case of a 16 year old girl shopping at Walmart. She was sent coupons for baby related articles, e.g. nappies and baby nutrition, since her shopping behaviour indicated that she was pregnant. The father angrily called the store and was complaining that his daughter was sent these vouchers since she is just 16 and it would be highly unlikely that she was pregnant. Two weeks later, the father rang the store again and apologized since his daughter told him that she was actually pregnant. Continue reading

Paradigm Shifters – Hire a Junior to Lead Your Company?

photo credit: Hamed Saber via photopin cc

photo credit: Hamed Saber via photopin cc

First of all, there will always be a paradigm. There might be a state where conflicting paradigms are competing for supremacy but a time without paradigms is not possible.

Having recognised how your own expectations and therefore paradigms influence your beliefs about the world, you can use this ability to advance.

Assuming you have discovered the state of severe discomfort where your old paradigm does not fit anymore, what kind of leader or in general human resources are necessary to complete the paradigm shift? For instance, why do the big strategy consultancies employ often people with backgrounds that often seem counter-intuitive to the business that are in?

To continue reading this article, please visit our sister blog at: Paradigm Shifters – Hire a Junior to Lead Your Company?

Do Our Expectations Cloud Our World?

photo credit: One Way Stock via photopin cc

photo credit: One Way Stock via photopin cc

In strategic decision making, we have certain expectations about the world and how it behaves. In order to find your blue ocean, you are on the lookout for distinguishing elements.

The aim is to make competition irrelevant by carving out for yourself a hopefully close to inimitable competitive advantage. These processes are often similar to paradigm shifts in sciences. These shift describe the advancement from one paradigm, e.g the sun circulates the earth, to another, e.g. the earth circulates the sun. Continue reading

Game of CIOs

photo credit: Nomadic Lass via photopin cc

photo credit: Nomadic Lass via photopin cc

As you might have noticed, the first episode of Game of Throne’s new season was released by HBO. You have probably been as excited as million of other fans and have eagerly awaited the start.

HBO was probably excited as well but ruined the fun for some of its users. HBO GO, the streaming platform, crashed during the release and none of its users where able to watch their long anticipated show. Continue reading

Getting Buy-in for Strategy

photo credit: Global X via photopin cc

photo credit: Global X via photopin cc

Whenever we kick of a strategy study in our consulting business with a client, we face a classic choice – do we involve the team from the start or work in a think tank and then syndicate the results. I was fascinated to notice that this dilemma occurs more often as mentioned in the recent BBC Article ‘The Difficult Art of a Good Brainstorm’.

There are many relevant points in the article but I think a fundamental point has been omitted that applies to many organisations, especially larger ones. It is of little relevance how good the idea is as long as the organisation does not buy into it. Therefore consulting the wider team in early stages can be critical to paving the way to future radical change. In order to achieve a mental alignment, it is important to to assess early on whether the strategy is likely to just be an ‘evolution’ from where you are today or more a ‘revolution’. Continue reading