A variety of online markets have developed in recent years to facilitate trade in labour services. Upwork – previously known as oDesk-eLance (oDesk was founded in 2005 and merged with eLance in 2014) – is the largest global online market for outsourced work, with revenues of around $1 billion a year, making it the ‘behemoth of the human cloud’ […]
According to the popular French economist Thomas Piketty, one of the main factors contributing to the growing inequality in the western world is inflated rates of executive pay.
Whilst executive pay is frequently the subject of furious political and ethical debate, it too remains a difficult topic for the organisations employing top managers. Despite the fact that it would certainly […]
Using big data for finance is a trend at the centre of the UK financial sector. The emerging financial services sector is commonly termed ‘fintech’ and while it includes firms in retail financial services, risk analytics and aspects of extensive payment systems, a major element of it focuses on the use of big data and the algorithms appropriate to […]
Utilizing new technology, combined with aggressive and innovative marketing, your business has significantly expanded over the last few years. You’ve attracted talented staff who are poised to take the company to even greater heights. You want to give them rein and let them run.
Unfortunately, one of your salesmen (we’ll call him John), who handles several key accounts, doesn’t seem […]
When most people think about organisational strategy, they think of something that is top-down: a plan that is designed and orchestrated by senior management, which points the organisation towards the future. It’s a valid way to think: most organisations do have senior people making strategic plans.
But top-down strategy is just one part of the puzzle. If we really want […]
‘Tis the season to shop and ‘tis the time to be torn apart by shopping dilemmas — which “it” items to buy and which ones to forgo?!
Imagine that David is browsing through his favourite retailer’s website and he is stopped dead on his (digital) tracks by scores of must-have items. To make his shopping task easier he decides to […]
The recent terror attacks in Paris have triggered a renewed debate on the multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, and/or multi-religion society in Europe. A multi-ethnic society inevitably creates multi-ethnic workplaces, hence ethnic diversity is rapidly increasing in all parts of business, both in domestic and international operations. What do we know about the implications of multi-ethnic workplaces in the face of violent […]
Working adults these days, perhaps now more than ever, often feel pressed for time. Time pressure is even more intense for working parents. The persistent sense of too-much–to-do-in-too-little-time has spawned a time management industry that by some accounts has more books and related merchandise available than that targeted at weight loss.The wisdom captured by these materials often boils down to “prioritise and organise”: […]
DECEIT, FRAUD, REGULATORY EVASIONS, WINDOW DRESSING: words that have become far too familiar in business news headlines. The Volkswagen emissions scandal is the latest example of disingenuous corporate malpractice that has already had far-reaching consequences for the ordinary customer, shareholder, and any other stakeholder directly or indirectly impacted by the actions of a few.
The outrage against the VW Group […]
Bearing in mind that only some 50 percent of businesses survive their first five years, what sort of person does it take to start one? The answer: an optimist. Still, other answers are possible. The returns to success may be so great that the gamble is worthwhile, especially as the autonomy experienced by entrepreneurs is part of the attraction. […]
Too many executives have chosen to displace workers rather than think through how technology and humans can work together symbiotically, a set of choices Shoshana Zuboff describes as the automate or informate dilemma. In practice, automation can be deployed by either “automating”, “informating”, or both. In light of advances in automation, Tom Davenport and Julia Kirby have suggested a […]
The British National Formulary (BNF), a reference book for all medicines used in the UK’s National Health System (NHS), was first published in 1949 as a collection of adaptable recipes for making up remedies. With the rise of the pharmaceutical industry, the availability of pre-packaged, manufactured medicines, and their accompanying regulation, the BNF is now a repository of drug […]
One approach to career pursuit encourages people to prioritize doing what they love and to pursue their passions, as exemplified by Steve Jobs’ statement that “the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.” A second approach prioritizes achieving outcomes such as salary and job security, as […]
The term “Robotic Process Automation” (RPA) connotes visions of physical robots wandering around offices doing the job of humans. However, the term really means automation of service tasks. Let’s think of business processes such as transferring data from multiple input sources such as email and spreadsheets to systems of record like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM). Here […]
Gender differences in pay are ubiquitous at all organisational levels including at the top. Entrepreneurship is hailed as one way for women to circumvent organizational norms and discrimination, because as CEOs of their own organizations, entrepreneurs largely determine their own pay. Moreover, social entrepreneurship may be a particularly gender-blind occupational choice; evidence indicates that women are more likely to start a social […]
It is widely accepted that non-verbal communication is extremely influential in interpersonal encounters, and non-verbal signals (i.e. everything except the words themselves), including body language, eye contact, tone of voice and rapidity of speech, can have a subtle but significant influence on the dynamic between two people. For leaders in a professional context, there is no exception.
I have recently […]