Laura LaBerge

Many organizations have spent decades understanding how to make trade-offs in their businesses, where the profit pools are, and the structure of their value chains. Digital changes all that. First, on an overarching level, digital currently destroys more economic value for incumbents than it creates. There are two main drivers. The first one is that digital creates transparency that allows a much higher percentage of … [ Read more ]

Jeremy Rifkin on How to Manage a Future of Abundance

The influential economic theorist looks ahead to a world of virtually free energy and zero marginal cost production, and to a desperate race against climate change.

Running on Data: Activity Trackers and the Internet of Things

The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is often described as a collection of connected sensors, but it is actually a much more complex concept. It involves not only the connection and integration of devices that monitor the physical world—temperature, pressure, altitude, motion, proximity to something else, biometrics, sound, images, and so forth—but also the aggregation, relationship, and analysis of the information those devices create in order … [ Read more ]

The Next Pop Superstar Just Might Be a Robot

Shelly Palmer, one of the world’s leading digital-technology commentators, talks about the evolution of the entertainment and media industry.

The Global Forces Inspiring a New Narrative of Progress

That broad narrative of intensifying competition, as well as the growing need for cooperation, contains challenges, but also great opportunity. We hear about the challenges every day in our conversations with global business leaders: How long can their traditional sources of competitive advantage survive in the face of technological shifts? How will changing consumer and societal expectations affect their business models? What does it mean … [ Read more ]

The Global Forces Inspiring a New Narrative of Progress

Growth is shifting, disruption is accelerating, and societal tensions are rising. Confronting these dynamics will help you craft a better strategy, and forge a brighter future.

Editor’s Note: by its nature, this is a topical article but I think the analysis provided is interesting and I think it will still be worth reading in future years to see how accurate it turns out to be. … [ Read more ]

A Strategist’s Guide to Industry 4.0

Global businesses are about to integrate their operations into a seamless digital whole, and thereby change the world.

How Blockchains Could Change the World

Ignore Bitcoin’s challenges. In this interview, Don Tapscott explains why blockchains, the technology underpinning the cryptocurrency, have the potential to revolutionize the world economy.

The Economic Essentials of Digital Strategy

A supply-and-demand guide to digital disruption.

Peter Drucker

Psychology tells us that the one sure way to shut off all perception is to flood the senses with stimuli. That’s why the manager with reams of computer output on his desk is hopelessly uninformed. That’s why it’s so important to exploit the computer’s ability to give us only the information we want—nothing else. The question we must ask is not, “How many figures can … [ Read more ]

Peter Drucker

We cannot put on the computer what we cannot quantify. And we cannot quantify what we cannot define. Many of the important things, the subjective things, are in this category. To know something, to really understand something important, one must look at it from 16 different angles. People are perceptually slow, and there is no shortcut to understanding; it takes a great deal of time. … [ Read more ]

James Guszcza, Bryan Richardson, Daniel Kahneman

In Thinking, Fast and Slow, the Nobel Prize-winning founder of behavioral economics Daniel Kahneman … writes of two fictitious mental processes that he calls System 1 (“thinking fast”) and System 2 (“thinking slow”). System 1 mental operations are rapid and automatic; they are biased toward belief and confirmation rather than analysis and skepticism; they tend to jump to conclusions and infer causal relations based on … [ Read more ]

James Guszcza, Bryan Richardson

By now there are hundreds of examples … in which analytics involving the most traditional of data sources outperform traditional modes of decision-making. …

Each case … involves “sorting” or “prioritization” decisions that (a) are central to an organization’s operations; (b) are made repeatedly, typically by experts relying on professional judgment in varying degrees; and (c) incorporate quantifiable information that is readily available, yet commonly used … [ Read more ]

Peter Bell

Analytics is to management as a light bulb is to darkness: it is illuminating and helpful in revealing both future opportunities and pitfalls. Descriptive analytics seeks to understand past data and is widely used. Predictive analytics seeks to understand the future. This is a challenge for many firms, since it brings in risk (the future is uncertain) and the need to manage risk. Prescriptive … [ Read more ]

Freek Vermeulen

When something seems too good to be true, it usually is. And management techniques, practices, and strategies are no different. When you read a business book or attend a presentation on a particular management practice, it is a good habit to explicitly ask, “What might it not be good for?” When might it not work; what could be its drawbacks?

[…] There is a second … [ Read more ]

Michael E. Raynor

Explanatory power is a red herring when the objective is predictive accuracy.

Michael E. Raynor

[Steve] Jobs, for all his impact, was still only one person. In extracting general principles from his career as a whole, we have precisely one data point with which to work. And you can draw any line you want through a single data point.

Thomas C. Redman

Every manager must make the distinction between “correlation” and “cause and effect” regularly, as the topic comes up in many guises.

John Tukey

It is better to have an approximate answer to the right question than an exact answer to the wrong question.