Leveraging Intellectual Capital

The power of leveraging Intellectual Capital is significant, with industries and businesses that are consciously competent in their Intellectual Capital being closely linked with:

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  • Higher profitability
  • Possessing greater market leverage
  • Harnessing increased product differentiation and uniqueness
  • Better equipped to successfully transition from products into services

In today’s service economy Intellectual Capital is increasingly difficult to defend, resulting in short-lived market advantage and a need for continual reinvention and the effective capturing and exploiting of an organisation’s IC. It is therefore essential that businesses fully leverage the following two key aspects of their Intellectual Capital:

Understand and Managing Intellectual Capital:

  • To ensure application into market opportunities. – The true value of IC is only valuable if it is fully exploited within the market place
  • To leverage IC assets across the business. – IC that resides in one area of the business should be exploited in all applicable areas
  • To protect the IC portfolio – Preventing or delaying competitors from catching up
  • To maximise company value – Defensible IC significantly increases the market value of businesses

Gain sustainable advantage from Intellectual Capital:

  • Future investment requirements and portfolios – Developing the right IP to address tomorrows needs
  • Business divestment and targeting decisions – Maintaining IC rich business and exiting low IP activities.

Organising and Scheduling Effective Meetings

The number of people attending is an important consideration when organising a meeting.  Too many people and the meeting is likely to take far too long, too few people and commitment from interested parties not attending may not be forthcoming.

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As a general rule, up to eight is ideal.  It is worth considering whether all members need to attend for the whole meeting, particularly where numbers are high.  Where some people need to attend parts of the meeting the agenda should be organised to accommodate this unless doing this would adversely affect the structure of the meeting.

Other tactics can be employed e.g., setting up sub-meetings prior to the main meeting to address some items in advance so that only one member of this group needs to come to the main meeting.

To ensure involvement and possibly avoid any unpleasant surprises, chat to each member individually prior to the meeting.  This will provide useful insights and also they may be willing to raise points at the meeting thus ensuring shared responsibility

Most meetings go on too long.  Two hours is about as long as normal concentration will allow.  Meetings planned for a longer duration should include a break for refreshment and fresh air.

Even formally chaired meetings work more effectively in equal status arrangements e.g., no desk, members seated in a circle, importantly no interruption by calls, emails and texts.

When the purpose, time, location, duration and members of the meeting have been established, think about the pre-meeting paperwork.  The agenda, which is the key document, and any reports, papers etc that members will be expected to read should be circulated two to three days beforehand indicating any pre-meeting action to be taken.

Brief agendas do not necessarily create brief meetings, in fact the opposite is often the case.  Imprecise agenda points only serve to confuse or mislead, resulting in unprepared members.  The more precise agenda items are, the more items can be covered because everyone is prepared, ready to respond and act.

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Use a Structure like PAT and SATT below

Purpose –        What is the purpose of the meeting?

Agenda –         What issues do we need to cover?

Time –             What are the start and finish times?

And

Summary –      Gain consensus while everyone is there on the joint understanding of what has been agreed or decided upon.

Action –           Who is doing what and by when?  Get assignments put into diaries and schedules not just “To Do Lists.”

Tell –               Who else do we need to tell?  What is the “best” way?  Who is going to do it and by when?

Time –             Of the next meeting or communication to the group so progress is monitored and shared.  Plan and schedule the work and the event now while everyone is together.

A brand masterclass, complete with cautionary tale

When people think of brands it’s not long before they get to Coca-Cola as an example of one that has taken over the world.  This little film gives you a potted history of the development of the brand, including the dark, dark days of “New Coke” (you’ll be surprised how few days that disaster lasted) and the iconic Santa, polar bears and truck that fix Coca-Cola in many people’s minds as a must-buy for Christmas, even if they never drink the stuff themselves.

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Where Coca-Cola brand development is concerned prepare to have your emotions toyed with, with no attempt at subtlety.

Swedish giant beats Apple to technology announcement

One of Sweden’s best known global companies has stolen a march on Apple, getting their launch out well ahead of Apple’s much anticipated announcement of a new iPhone on 9 September.

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Taking the Apple style of product announcement, with upbeat music and hands on product demo Ikea introduce the BookBook.  Early adopters report none of the bugs and hassles that have accompanied previous upgrades.

Those crazy Swedes …

A Meeting Checklist

Before you call or attend your next meeting have a quick glance through this checklist.  Can you answer the questions?  Are you happy with the answers?  You might be surprised at how much time and money you can save by only attending well designed, well chaired meetings.

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Purpose

  • Why are we holding this meeting?
  • Will the output of the meeting equate to three times it cost in terms of salaries of those involved?
  • Would some other method of communication be as effective?
  • What specifically do we wish to discuss?

Scope

  • What is the background to the meeting?
  • What are the terms of reference?
  • Will we cover each agenda point in depth or will some be over-viewed?
  • Can all information be divulged to everyone?
  • Do we have all the information we require?
  • Are all the members available and qualified?
  • Will the size of the group be appropriate?
  • Do we have sufficient time?
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Objectives

  • What specifically do we wish to achieve?
  • How will we measure our success?
  • What is our minimum criteria for success?
  • What else could we achieve?
  • What are the constraints?