The ‘Moneyball’ Approach to Hiring CEOs

Instead of throwing money at “superstars,” companies would be better served by using quantifiable measures to pick the right CEO, according to recent Wharton research.

Don’t do SWOT: A Note on Marketing Planning

SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) is a popular framework for developing a marketing strategy. Although SWOT is promoted as a useful technique in numerous marketing texts, it is not universally praised: One expert said that he preferred to think of SWOT as a “Significant Waste of Time.”

The problem with SWOT is more serious than just wasting time. Because it mixes idea generation with evaluation, it … [ Read more ]

Demand Forecasting: Evidence-based Methods

Marketing practitioners regard forecasting as an important part of their jobs. This paper discuss methods to forecast demand.

Competitor-oriented Objectives: The Myth of Market Share

Competitor-oriented objectives, such as market-share targets, are promoted by academics and are commonly used by firms. A 1996 review of the evidence, summarized in this paper, found that competitor-oriented objectives reduced profitability. We describe new evidence from 12 studies, one of which is introduced in this paper. The new evidence supports the conclusion that competitor-oriented objectives are harmful, especially when managers receive information about competitors’ … [ Read more ]

How to Make Better Forecasts and Decisions: Avoid Face-to-face Meetings

In his book, The Wisdom of Crowds, James Surowiecki turned conventional wisdom upside down when he showed that the average opinion of a crowd is frequently more accurate than the opinions of most of its individual members. In this article, in addition to pointing out the strengths and weaknesses in that book, Scott Armstrong considers whether or not traditional face-to-face meetings are an effective way … [ Read more ]

Forecasting for Marketing

Abstract: Research on forecasting is extensive and includes many studies that have tested alternative methods in order to determine which ones are most effective. We review this evidence in order to provide guidelines for forecasting for marketing. The coverage includes intentions, Delphi, role playing, conjoint analysis, judgmental bootstrapping, analogies, extrapolation, rule-based forecasting, expert systems, and econometric methods. We discuss research about which methods are most … [ Read more ]

Social Irresponsibility in Management

A review of previous evidence suggested that a substantial proportion of managers may be expected to bring serious harm to others in situations where they feel it is proper behavior for their role. Further evidence was provided by the Panalba role-playing study, where 79% of the groups selected a highly irresponsible decision and none chose the decision that was free of irresponsibility. These results were … [ Read more ]

Forecasting Principles

The Forecasting Principles site seeks to summarize all useful knowledge about forecasting so that it can be used by researchers, practitioners, and educators. This knowledge is provided as principles (guidelines, prescription, rules, conditions, action statements, or advice about what to do in given situations). The evidence-based principles apply to
* management
* operations research, and
* social sciences.

The Forecasting Canon: Nine Generalizations to Improve Forecast Accuracy

Using findings from empirically-based comparisons, this article develops nine generalizations that can improve forecast accuracy. The author finds that these are often ignored by organizations, so that attention to them offers substantial opportunities for gain. The article offers recommendations on how to structure a forecasting problem, how to tap managers’ knowledge, and how to select appropriate forecasting methods.