advertisement advertisement The year 2012 is not only the Year of the Dragon, it also marks 30 years since In Search of Excellence was published. While there have been voices over the years which have been critical of the book’s methodology, its resulting content, and even its writing style, the case can be made that it is the most influential management book not only in these last 30 years but perhaps–just perhaps–ever. Hyperbole? Consider: It created a new genre of “best seller” business books, works that were not only informative but interesting and highly readable for Everyman. With a few exceptions, such as McGregor, Chandler, Sloan, maybe Drucker, many (most?) prior books on management/leadership were arcane tomes written by academics for academics and practitioners and were rarely found on any popular “best seller” list. Now “business” is considered a book category in itself thanks in no small part to … [Read more...] about The Most Influential Business Book Of The Last 30 Years?
Celebrating 100 years in business
advertisement advertisement There are few products less sexy that a thermostat. It is a boring, utilitarian commodity, right? The world agreed for over 100 years, until the lead designer of the iPod decided to shake things up. Tony Fadell took a completely fresh approach and challenged conventional wisdom. Rather than starting with the existing competitive set, he shattered industry norms from design to function. The result? The incredible new device known as the Nest Learning Thermostat. Besides its distinctive look, this baby ain’t your father’s thermostat. The artificial intelligence “learns” your habits. It has sensors to know when you are away so it doesn’t heat or cool an empty house. It’s connected to the web and evaluates external weather conditions to determine how to best respond inside. You can even control it from a smartphone app on the go. All this whiz-bang technology does more than fuel your inner geek. The Nest saves its … [Read more...] about Is Your Company About To Be Knocked From Its Perch?
advertisement advertisement A couple of months ago, as I boarded my plane home to Australia, I found a large brown envelope waiting for me on my seat. Neat handwriting on the envelope said, “A personal note to Mr Lindstrom.” My curiosity was piqued. Inside was a bunch of newspapers and a handwritten letter. It explained, “We’ve noticed you’ve been away from home for some time, so we thought you might enjoy some local news before we get you safely back.” I’m a firm believer that anyone with any kind of business savvy will aim to over-deliver and under-promise. Yet, for some unknown reason, the opposite seems to hold true. Perhaps this belief dates back to when I was a young kid obsessed with Lego. I’d get the box and build the car, the helicopter, the castle or whatever, and always at the end of each project I had a couple of spare Lego bricks. I treasured these almost more than the finished toy, and regarded them as a special … [Read more...] about Pinched By A Virgin
What is meant by the term value buying? What are the typical signs of a value stock?In the context of the stock market, value investing means buying a good quality stock at a cheap valuation. It is something like buying items (clothes, shoes) in a ‘sale’ or when they are available at a discount. Two factors are very important here. The stock should be of a ‘good quality’ company and it should be available ‘cheap’. Sometimes, value investing gets confused with buying whatever is available cheap. That is not value investing. On the contrary, it could end up being a value trap resulting in no returns over a period of time. As an analogy, it means buying brands like Zara, Puma, Zodiac, Van Heusen during a sale. A discount bargain at a roadside stall may not necessarily be value investing.The technical definition of value investing is buying the stock of a good quality company at a price that is lower than its intrinsic value. Intrinsic value here … [Read more...] about Classroom | A primer on spotting quality stocks and avoiding value traps (Equity: Part 28)
advertisement advertisement When Walmart bought up a tiny Silicon Valley startup called Kosmix in April last year, it left a lot of tech watchers scratching their heads. About nine months on, the little company’s role within the mega retailer is coming into focus. Kosmix–now called WalmartLabs–is leading mobile and social research and development at Walmart, with the goal of pushing the company forward in mobile and online retail. And increasingly, it looks like Kosmix will play a key role in the retail behemoth’s international efforts. For Venky Harinarayan and Anand Rajaraman, the company’s two cofounders, Walmart’s purchase of Kosmix was their second startup deal. They’d sold their first company, Junglee, to that other massive retailer, Amazon. Kosmix became WalmartLabs and Harinarayan and Rajaraman joined Walmart as heads of mobile and online retail. The key, it seems, is that Walmart is giving the tiny crew the space to create and … [Read more...] about WalmartLabs Brings The “Two Pizza Team” Startup Culture To Walmart Empire