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Cars of tomorrow

BMW was 100 years old last month. Despite such a momentous birthday from one of the world’s largest brands, the only car news story in town is Tesla’s new Model 3 launch. This California-cool car company isn’t a household name just yet, but looks set to become the next Google or Apple in its ubiquity […]

Intentional accidents

It’s around the end and start of the calendar year that you hear the most talk of growth. How much did you grow? What will it be next year? It often strikes me that when people talk about growth, especially the much-fabled organic growth, they can imply that it’s easy. That it’s somehow accidental. As […]

Stopping the robber barons

Reading the combative words of @LukeJohnsonRCP in the Sunday Times (paywall) today, I was struck by the juxtaposition of a free market capitalist championing some sort of nationalist government intervention to throttle enterprise and innovation. He writes, “We have a huge and successful creative industry, which is being gradually eviscerated by the depredations of parasites such as […]

Profiling your taste

I’m no foodie, but if I did want to eat at Heston Blumenthal’s soon-to-reopen Fat Duck restaurant, it’d take more than just picking up the phone. He’s apparently been vetting (potential) customers for years by Googling them. I find this interesting on two fronts: the building of a profiling dossier of patrons; and, profiling in […]

A leader’s mindset

A small business owner I know is fed up. He’s busy, stressed and feeling the relentless pressure of being the manager-leader-CEO-strategist-operations guy. His 80-100 hours each week are taking their toll in year two of this business. I’m happy to be a shoulder to cry on, but if you’re opening up then you can expect […]

19 ideas to think big, act small

Two small local gift shops recently asked me for some advice having just opened their doors. Here’s my thinking that may ring a bell or two with you: Keep things simple whilst striving for quality – a massively pared back John Lewis, if you like. Keep changing: your window display, your special offers, and your […]

Download your commute

Apple is a notoriously secretive company but the Wall Street Journal revealed (behind the pay wall) this week that the company have hundreds of engineers working on an electric car known as Titan. Apple are also apparently testing a self-driving car. If they do launch a car (and that’s surely a BIG if, at this […]

Wolf of Wall St is indicator without answers

Watching Leonardo DiCaprio play convicted stock market trader, Jordan Belfort, in The Wolf of Wall Street you can’t fail to feel his story. You admire his initial drive, his energy and zeal to win. Then of course, power corrupts and director, Martin Scorsese gives you both barrels of how utterly vile Belfort’s life gets. He […]

High streets continue to change

PwC and the Local Data Company have published a paper showing the (obvious) demise of the nation’s high streets and it’s doing the media rounds. Despite the growing economy, our town centres are continuing to shrink thanks to our propensity for home and out-of-town shopping. The study of 500 town centres shows 3,003 shops closed in […]

The Croudfunding Revolution

Croudfunding is revolutionising the investment business. Individuals fed up with meagre returns from interest rates or pension pots can invest directly into companies at their embryonic stage in order to seed and see them grow along their product life cycle. They don’t need to be high net worth folks either. Common wisdom would be to […]

Google change far more than adwords

Google are continuing to tweak their Adwords offering, forcing up the bidding process for those hoping to sell products. The latest refinement can push a single product into view rather than the grids or multi-retailer listings we’re used to seeing. Much has already been written of the policy reversal to charge for these listings that […]

Personalised ads for TV

Sky have launched AdSmart in the UK this week. The thinking is that instead of receiving generic national adverts, your TV viewing will receive more localised ads based on your postcode. This possibly sounds intrusive when you first hear about matching commercial advertising to your viewing but it’s not tracking a personal profile just serving […]

High Street gets a new champion

Bill Grimsey, the former Wickes and Iceland CEO has presented his plans to help our hurting high streets. He’s offering pragmatic options to revitalise our town centres. He’s none too pleased with previous initiatives and hopes to persuade politicians that plenty can and should be done rather than bemoan the demise. Many voices say click […]

Medicine unplugged

Health is universal and, perversely, so too is our deteriorating health problem. The developing world has obvious health shortfalls and problems but ‘Globesity’ has entered the developed world’s Zeitgeist as testimony that we’re killing ourselves through our own lifestyle choices. That’s one sound reason why health will be the next great tech revolution. Yahoo’s super-smart […]

Google will win it all

Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google make up the five horsemen of the internet. I’ve written before about how they are both dominating their own and crossing each others’ fields at the same time. The media constantly frames a theory that all five are at war, each wanting to be the only tech company standing. […]

Zombie companies are altering the business life cycle

John Battelle wrote a while ago, “As a culture, two classes of animated beings populate our lives. One are living – people, pets, E-Coli, grasshoppers. The other are machines – computers, leaf blowers, automobiles.” I’m no scientist so I’ve got to agree with him, except that it could be argued companies are somewhat in between […]

A letter to McLaren

The F1 season begins with the Melbourne Grand Prix on March 17th. Like all season starts, the preamble and build-up contains huge excitement to pique a fan’s interest in the foreplay of this spectacular international road show. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes will, of course, finish victorious with both the drivers’ and the constructors’ titles returning to […]

Burt Reynolds

What is Twitter?

How do you explain Twitter to someone who’s new to the whole thing, as many are with their new tablets from Santa? I’ve always said it’s like the modern CB radio. CB radios were (and still are) used for short bursts of speech – an open broadcast. Twitter is exactly that but it’s online instead […]

Beckham’s new sponsors

So, David Beckham played his final game for LA Galaxy last weekend and lifted the MLS Cup to close their season on a high. Mr Beckham has decided not to take the easy road and continue with the status quo of life with LA Galaxy. I would’ve thought it’d be incredibly easy for him to […]

Town centres ‘adapt or die’

A piece on the BBC this weekend sites a survey from Experian that indicates town centres will need to market themselves as convenient hubs for picking up products ordered online. From it, “More shops will need to adopt “click and collect” and retailers should embrace mobile commerce and social media to develop their online presence…” […]

Is the grass always greener

I often see something like this in organisations: A new staff member is brought in to do good work. She shows promise at first, but her star fades. As it fades, the employee feels a bit more of the boss’s breath on their neck. Instead of upping their game and reengaging fully, they start into […]

Curation nation

In our internet-fuelled world of deafening noise, I’ve long preached about curation to help us with our web-induced A.D.D. I don’t want to check out 250+ blogs, I want someone to save me time and trawl through all that chaff and siphon out the nuggets of news and information that are right for me. Twitter […]