7 Technology Related Trends That Are Coming To A Place Near You!

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  1. The mobile phone looks like being the first truly successful convergence device since the Teasmade. The killer application combination will be location tracking (through GPS or similar), high bandwidth and new services. Don’t underestimate customers inventing uses either, like using Bluetooth to see who is up for flirting on the bus, in the train carriage, or in the bar? Or using your phone to scan food products for nutritional info (MacDonald’s in Japan) .
  2. Google will continue to offer new opportunities. Anyone for Counter Googling? This is where you find out about new customers’ preferences and them offer them a more personalised service. The Bel-Air Hotel in Los Angeles Googles first-time guests to find out which of their services might be of interest when the person arrives.
  3. Transparency Tyranny. The more opaque the transaction the less chance to build customer equity, The opposite is also true, the more the customer can ‘see’ behind or ‘into’ the product/service the greater their trust and connectivity. Transactions become experiences. Anybody who has ordered on-line and used a product configurator linked to a production management system (Dell for instance) will have experienced this. A product becomes your product. Bookshops will pile stock on the floor, not out the back, creating a different, more informal atmosphere. Garages who let you see into their workshops where your car is being fixed, reducing anxiety.
  4. Demographic changes. We have more people over the age of 60 than under the age of 16 – for the first time in our history. Marketing to these aging Boomers (people born between 1946 and 1960) will become huge. Some estimates say half of this generation could live to be 100. Money, plus time, plus curiosity equals people who will voraciously consume technology driven services, on their terms.
  5. Social networks delivering user controlled intimacy. You decide how much to reveal about yourself, who you let read it and how widely you allow its distribution. We are close to also allowing it to be marketed (for a fee). Imagine your preference profile (still under your control) being shown to companies who want to sell to you, and you being paid for it.
  6. There is now an alternative to the physical world. Second Life gives you the chance to live in a virtual world. How much this will turn into 21st Century CB Radio we don’t know, but how many CB millionaires were there? Second Life has already chalked up its first. Should you or your business be on Second Life?
  7. The line between production and consumption is blurring. Google’s purchasing and monetising of YouTube is all about creating an earning opportunity for the millions of people who post their videos. User generated content through blogs, networks and personal web space is creating a completely new market-place.

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Sweet Dreams

Masterfoods, makers of childhood favourites Mars, Maltesers and Milky Way have announced a phased withdrawal of their mainstream advertising to under 12’s. They’ll still advertise, and they have a new ‘healthier’ range that they’ll target at children over 9, but no more adverts, competitions, games or adverts for pre-teens.

Yes, that probably means that I’d never have amassed my collection of free Wade Whimsey animals by sending off wrappers, but would I still have amassed a collection of cavities?

Cynicism tends to take over when an international corporation makes an announcement to stop advertising, or stop supplying profitable lines. Masterfoods explain that they have taken this decision in line with customer feedback. Detractors claim that they made the decision to avoid government legislation.

In the UK chocolate manufacturers were perhaps forerunners of the Corporate Social Responsibility movement, ensuring decent housing and leisure for employees, keeping vices such as alcohol and gambling away from workers, yet when Cadbury’s acquired Green & Black’s chocolate there was grumbling that the ethics had gone from chocolate.

An increasing group of informed and vocal customers want to know that they are dealing with organisations that share their values, or even have values that they can aspire to. Innocent Drinks have built their premium juice business on being nice, fun people who like what they do and care about customers. It seems to be working well. Enron produced gloss literature explaining that their core values included Integrity. That didn’t work so well for them, maybe because it wasn’t true.

Having values isn’t just about publicising them it’s about believing in them, holding people to account on them, and making sure they are part of everyday life.

To talk about how you can bring values to life in your organisation Contact Us.

Talking Turkey

This week the nation’s eyes were focused on a turkey farm in East Anglia. With an outbreak of avian influenza and the accompanying outbreak of news reports, insight pieces and radio phone-ins, the employees and residents were overwhelmed.

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Not every organisation will face that kind of media intrusion into their dealings, nor will they have to deal with the kind of disaster that means decisive action is needed on quite the same scale, or with the public interest so clearly at the forefront.

This kind of major event can really demonstrate the power of leadership within an organisation or the lack of it. Organisations with real leadership at all levels will respond quickly, but without panic, and will bring their employees and customers with them. Without effective leadership, cover ups, disagreements and conflicting messages confuse and disrupt employees and customers, damaging employee relations and customer relationships.

Before deciding whether your organisation has the leadership it needs in place, in the places it needs it, it’s worth thinking about what leadership means in your business:

  • Does your organisation have a clear language of leadership?
  • Are leadership expectations transparent throughout the organisation?
  • To what extent is leadership identified and rewarded?
  • Where are your leaders coming from?

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To learn more about how Predaptive’s 4SL Leadership can help you to build a real leadership cadre Contact Us.

Which Learning Style Are You?

The four major Styles of Learning are defined as:

The Activist Style
People who favour an “Activist” style like to be “doing” and have a desire to get the task and project done – now. Possess a strong need to involve themselves deeply in the particular activity or subject of study under review, they enjoy the new and the excitement of the future and any occasion to brainstorm ideas to solve a problem as part of a team. They delight in developing relationships with others in the process of learning.

The Reflective Style
People who favour a “Reflective” style like to have the opportunity to think and consider each subject in depth, to consider deeply anything that they have read. Their depth of understanding is increased by carrying out in advance, desk research, use of the internet, books and articles on the same subject are often followed up before their own ideas and conclusions are confirmed. They do not find it easy or effective to learn quickly or at a “fly by the seat of the pants” training event.

The Theorist
StylePeople who favour a “Theorist” style like to see the logic of what they are about to be taught. They learn best where there is a structure and an outcome with a clear purpose. They enjoy seeing that the end result(s) has a conclusion or is part of a system, model or concept.

The Pragmatic Style
People who favour a “Pragmatic” style like to see a direct connection between the learning and some valued outcome or result. They often benefit from a detailed action plan that will help them to identify this connection and motivate them to work at their learning for the sake of the good results that they can expect and expect in the future.

Which one will best suit each member of your team? The modern manager needs to be a coach to be able to get the very best from the teams they manage and to achieve higher performance for their organisations.

To learn more about your learning style and in coaching, mentoring and empowering your team, why not attend Developing Your Coaching Skills – Contact Us.

Structured Training Open Courses Receive CPD Accreditations

All of our Courses are now CPD Accredited (Continuing Professional Development). The world in which all professionals practice is changing. Global competition has never been more intense, clients are more demanding and technology offers new ways of working. The knowledge base of the professionals and of the sectors in which they operate has also increased. With such changes come new opportunities; new clients, new markets, new areas of practice and new methods of working. Above all such changes demand new knowledge, new skills and increasingly a commitment to lifelong professional learning.
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Training & CPD are:

  • Linked both to organisational strategy and individual needs
  • Viewed as an investment in human resource management
  • Focused on the job training and skills development into knowledge-based training
  • Evaluated with both pre-and post course assessment
  • About learning as opposed to training
  • Transferred into action in the workplace
  • Flexible in application including open, distance and self-development approaches

So what does this mean to you?

  • This is a nationally recognised qualification through the CIPD
  • It’s used by all professions to catalogue what their members have been doing to demonstrate they’re still learning and staying up to date. It’s compulsory for people like lawyers, CIPD members, accountants etc.