När allt blir mobilt

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Customer care / Kundvård, Digitalisering / Internet, Försäljning / Sales on February 26th, 2014 by admin

Om skärmarna blir 4 eller 6 tum kan kvitta. Den stora frågan är hur mobilerna ändrar våra beteenden.

I måndags öppnades Mobile World Congress 2014 i Barcelona. Under en vecka kommer den digitala utvecklingens epicentrum vara samlad i den katalanska huvudstaden. Här hittar vi lanseringarna och trenderna som kommer att förändra våra beteenden.

Bara de aktörer som får sina mobila strategier rätt kommer att vara kvar på den digitala scenen. Sista kvartalet förra året hade Facebooks mobila annonsintäkter växt till 53 procent av annonsförsäljningen. Facebook har råd att köpa WhatsApp för 121 miljarder kronor för att inte tappa momentum på den mobila scenen. Att grundaren Mark Zuckerberg är huvudtalaren nummer ett i Barcelona är ingen slump. På plats i Barcelona pratade han om strävan att det ska bli gratis att nå Facebook via mobilen.

Apple är ju idag framförallt en mobiltillverkare och deras strategi med premiummobiler är extrem lönsam även om de tappar räckvidd i ett ständigt expanderande mobiluniversum. Budgetmobilen 5C har dock floppat för att den är för dyr.
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Microsoft köpte Nokia för att ge sitt eget mobila operativsystem en chans. Om de lyckas erövra en tillräckligt stor marknadsandel är fortfarande i vågskålen, men Q3 2013 hade de 3,6 procent av smartmobilmarknaden, enligt analysföretaget IDC. Det är en ökning med 156 procent sedan samma kvartal året innan. I Barcelona har Nokia tom lanserat Android-mobiler för att hänga på giganterna. Kanske kan Microsoft tjäna på att världens största smartmobiltillverkare Samsung vill minska sitt beroende av Android.

Google har med operativsystemet Android lyckats bli det största mobila operativsystemet. Men det är sannolikt lättare att kopiera Androids upplägg än Apples. Firefox OS lurar i vassen och det är för tidigt att räkna ut Microsoft Mobile.

Däremot har Google svårt att tjäna lika mycket pengar på mobila annonser som desktopannonser. På det mobila annonsområdet finns det helt klart utrymme för innovationer som kan förändra marknadspositioner.

Internet of things är i grund och botten ett mobilt internet. Här finns det också utrymme för nya aktörer och innovation. Det är ingen slump att Google köpte The Nest, en smart pryl som styr hemmet, för det här är nästa område som är öppet för digitalisering.

För vanliga företag utanför de digitala oligarkernas skara är det inte viktigt om LG och Samsung byter marknadsandelar med varandra. Apple kommer behålla sin premiumposition inom en överskådlig framtid. Visst kan apputvecklingen kompliceras av ett framgångsrikt Microsoft Mobile, men det är inte själva kärnan.

Kärnan för vanliga företag är att förstå den mobila kanalen och ge sina mobila kunder den användarupplevelse de förtjänar. Det gäller att hänga på när beteendemönstren ändras.

Källa: Jajjamagazine.com, 26 februari 2014
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TV4 Play tar klivet in i Apple TV – som första skandinaviska tv-tjänst.

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Digitalisering / Internet on February 25th, 2014 by admin

TV4 Play finns med i Apple TV från och med idag.

– Vi är enormt stolta över att vara den första skandinaviska tv-tjänsten som lanseras i Apple TV. Nu blir det ännu lättare för tittarna att ta del av TV4-Gruppens breda utbud, säger Annika Järund Larsson, kanalchef på TV4 Play, i ett pressmeddelande.
apple TV
Samtidigt lanseras en rad ny funktioner i TV4 Play. Bland annat kan program favoritmarkeras, inloggade användare får en personlig “spelkö”, och varje avsnitt startar numera alltid där man senast avbröt uppspelningen.

Källa: dagensmedia.se, 25 februari 2014
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Av: Fredrik Svedjetun (fredrik@dagensmedia.se)

TV via Internet ….

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet on February 25th, 2014 by admin

eMarketer estimates that almost three-quarters of UK internet users—nearly 57% of the entire population—will watch video content via the internet at least monthly in 2014.

And that number will continue to rise through 2017, though only at low single-digit rates. Whatever the growth rate, digital video in the UK now constitutes a mass-market proposition.

Read more here.

”Att skjuta upp saker har blivit allt vanligare”

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Leadership / Ledarskap on February 25th, 2014 by admin

Studenten som väntar med att plugga till natten inför den viktiga tentan trots vetskapen om att resultatet därmed blir sämre. Mamman och pappan som hela tiden skjuter upp renoveringen av hallen, trots att de varje morgon med stigande irritation försöker hitta barnens mössor och vantar i all röra. Eller en reporter här på DN som in i det längsta väntar med att skriva klart artikeln till morgondagens tidning, trots att tiden för att kolla stavning och faktafel då blir minimal.

stress aPsykologen Alexander Rozental och journalisten Lina Wennersten har intresserat sig för uppskjutandets psykologi i flera år, och inom kort utkommer deras bok ”Dansa på deadline”. I den försöker de förklara varför en del alltid tycks vänta med att utföra viktiga uppgifter, trots att de riskerar att må sämre

Det här beteendet, som i vetenskapliga kretsar kallas prokrastinering, verkar bli allt vanligare. Forskning visar att ”uppskjutare” inte sällan har ångest och depression, samt att de ofta mår dåligt fysiskt eftersom de inte följer läkarens ordination eller rör på sig tillräckligt.

– Många hävdar att de jobbar bäst under press och i mediebranschen finns det gott om deadlineromantiker. Visst finns det en kick i att göra allt i sista stund, men blir resultatet bättre? Och hur påverkas omgivningen?

För många är journalistik intimt förknippat med just deadline. Därför känns det inte helt fel att träffa Lina och Alexander på DN:s redaktion i Marieberg i Stockholm för ett samtal om uppskjutandets mekanismer.

Ja, varför agerar då en del på det här sättet? Varför skjuter allt fler upp viktiga uppgifter så länge de kan, det vill säga prokrastinerar?

Enligt Alexander Rozental och Lina Wennersten kan beteendet spåras långt tillbaka i människans utveckling. I ”Dansa på deadline” berättar de att i vår tidiga historia var det särskilt viktigt att undvika allt som kunde vara farligt för oss. Ångest och andra kroppsliga reaktioner har därför som ursprungligt syfte att signalera fara.

– I dag kan vi känna ångest även inför det som inte hotar våra liv, till exempel inför svåra uppgifter där vi tvivlar på om vi verkligen räcker till. Att skjuta upp det vi ska göra är då en helt naturlig reaktion. Men när man får mer ångest av att skjuta upp något än av att faktiskt ta itu med det, kan det vara dags att söka hjälp, säger Alexander Rozental.

Han är utbildad psykolog och arbetar på en doktorsavhandling i klinisk psykologi. Många gånger har han blivit förbryllad över att vänner, kolleger och andra väntar med saker de borde ta itu med – trots att de senare blir lidande av uppskjutandet. Men först när en patient berättade om sina problem blev han verkligt intresserad av ämnet.

Efter att ha sökt bland forskningen hittade Alexander en del ame- rikansk litteratur i ämnet, och upptäckte också att beteendet kallades prokrastinering.

Ordet kommer från latinets ”pro castinus”, vilket betyder till morgondagen.

– Jag brukar vara noga med att betona att prokrastinering inte är ett personlighetsdrag eller någon egenskap, berättar Alexander Rozental. Det handlar i stället om ett beteende som ofta grundläggs tidigt, men som går att förändra även om det kan ta tid.

Lina Wennersten har arbetat som journalist i tio år, och blivit allt mer nyfiken på varför vi människor fungerar som vi gör. Det var också intresset för psykologi som gjorde att hon fick kontakt med Alexander.

– Med två små barn är det inte längre möjligt att skjuta upp saker till senare. Då går det inte längre att dansa på deadline, skrattar Lina. Allvarligt talat har jag inga större uppskjutartendenser, men det finns områden som jag drar mig för att ta itu med. Det kan vara att städa upp i röran i garderoben, som jag lider av.

Idén till sin nya bok fick Lina och Alexander när de upptäckte att det fanns väldigt lite skrivet på svenska i ämnet. Deras tanke var att beskriva och förklara fenomenet, men också att ge tips om hur den som har för vana att skjuta upp allt till senare kan få ett bättre liv.

– Vi vill minst av allt skuldbelägga dem som har för vana att skjuta upp saker, förklarar Lina och Alexander. De är inte särskilt odugliga eller särskiltstress b lata personer. Kanske kan vår bok leda till att fler får nya insikter om vilka faktorer som påverkar deras negativa beteende – och hur de kan komma till rätta med det.

Alexander berättar att de som skjuter upp saker kan må ganska bra, det känns skönt att slippa ta itu med en jobbig uppgift på jobbet. Men strax innan deadline slår stressen oftast till, ibland kan det till och med handla om ångest och svår oro.

– På sikt kan det här leda till sämre fysisk och psykisk hälsa, i värsta fall till depressioner. Därför är det viktigt att de som lider av sitt beteende kan få hjälp, menar Alexander Rozental.

Att skjuta upp saker till morgondagen kan få andra allvarliga följder, påpekar Lina Wennersten. Ta till exempel den som väntar med tandläkarebesöket trots att han eller hon vet att plågan kan bli värre längre fram. Eller alla kvinnor som lägger kallelsen till cellprovtagningen åt sidan för att de kanske är lite oroliga för det kommande provsvaret.
Lina och Alexander säger att vissa personlighetsfaktorer ändå påverkar benägenheten att prokrastinera. Nämnas kan låg självkontroll, hög impulsivitet, dåligt självförtroende och låg grad av optimism.

I en studie i USA som genomfördes på 1970-talet ansåg fem procent av deltagarna att de hade betydande problem med prokrastinering. I en jämförbar amerikansk studie svarade nyligen mellan femton och tjugo procent att deras uppskjutande skapade stora eller mycket stora svårigheter för dem. Mycket talar för att utvecklingen är likartad i Sverige, enligt Alexander Rozental och Lina Wennersten.

– En viktig förklaring är att arbetsmarknaden ser annorlunda ut än på 70-talet. I dag ställs det allt större krav på att vi ska strukturera vårt eget arbete och jobba mot långsiktiga mål. I nästan alla platsannonser efterfrågas ansvarstagande och förmåga att arbeta självständigt, påpekar Lina.

Samtidigt sitter allt fler kontorsanställda i öppna landskap där risken är större att bli distraherad. Allt oftare blir vi avbrutna av sms, mejl och mobilsamtal.

– Det här gör det allt svårare att koncentrera sig. Forskningen visar att ju mer distraherande moment, desto större benägenhet att skjuta upp. Därför är de öppna kontorslandskapen inte optimala. De påverkar många anställda negativt. Samtidigt minskar effektiviteten och det blir mindre producerat, förklarar Alexander Rozental.

Men, påpekar Lina. Syftet med boken som hon och Alexander skrivit är inte i första hand att bidra till att anställda blir mer produktiva på jobbet.

– Vår förhoppning är snarare att allt fler ska få hjälp att hantera sin vardag på ett bättre sätt, att de inser att deras beteende faktiskt gör dem mindre harmoniska. Prokrastinering är ett faktiskt problem för många i vardagen, säger Lina.

Slutligen vänder vi oss till författaren Fritiof Nilsson Piraten. På hans gravsten på Ravlunda kyrkgård på Österled står följande ord skrivna:

”Här under är askan av en man som hade vanan att skjuta allt till morgondagen. Dock bättrades han på sitt yttersta och dog verkligen den 31 januari 1972.”

Källa: DN.se, 25 februari 2014
Av:Thomas Lerner (thomas.lerner@dn.se)
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The use of smartphones in stores

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet, Försäljning / Sales on February 24th, 2014 by admin

Mcommerce is on the rise, with 42% buying via smartphone

More and more UK consumers are reaching for smartphones while browsing in physical stores, according to a February 2014 report, “Agile Consumer 2013,” commissioned by Cheil Worldwide. Its research partner OnePoll conducted the study, which looked at a wide range of shopping behaviors involving smartphones, from general research to price-checking and purchasing, in Q4 2013.

Researching with a phone is now the norm—not the exception—according to Cheil. Seven in 10 respondents had used their phones to check out potential purchases and compare prices. Over one-third went to mobile price comparison sites, and 17% had visited the mobile sites of individual retailers.

Retail apps were popular, too, and accessed in many locations. Some 42% of smartphone owners turned to apps to browse products while at home, and one-quarter did this while commuting or at work.

Phones really came into their own in physical stores, however. Over half (55%) of the sample confessed to using their phones on shopping trips. Of that group, 54% said they compared prices online via mobile. Almost as many (46%) gathered more information on products, and 41% took photos of potential buys. And good news for physical retailers: Showrooming wasn’t very common. Only 17% of smartphone owners used a mobile device to find a competitive offer on another merchant’s website and bought there.
smartphones

Smartphone owners were clearly open to mobile marketing messages, too. Some 72% said they would be more likely to revisit a store if it sent coupons and tailored promotions to their phones. A similar number (73%) would be more likely to buy additional products if they received a mobile voucher or coupon while shopping in a store.

Mobile buying isn’t as widespread as mobile shopping, of course. Just 17% of people researching via smartphone also bought with the device. But that was a higher proportion than the 12% who researched in-store on their phones and then bought at that store. Overall, 42% of UK smartphone owners had bought something with their phones, and over half of those said it was easy to do so.

These behavioral changes are dramatic—and there’s much more to come as retailers increasingly follow their customers onto mobile platforms. eMarketer estimates that UK mobile phone penetration will approach 81% this year, with nearly 52 million people owning at least one. That’s a lot of shoppers.

Source: emarketer.com, 24 February 2014
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Read more about Internet and sales.

Seven differences between sales and marketing

Posted in Aktuellt, Försäljning / Sales on February 21st, 2014 by admin

If any business is going to thrive in the 21st century it’s vital that we all have a clear understanding of how Sales and Marketing can work effectively together in our businesses. For too long, there have been unfruitful turf wars between sales and marketing teams. For too long, too many people have been fooled into believing that ‘sales’ lives under marketing’s mandate. And for too long, too many people have been calling ‘selling’ marketing which it is not.

We need to redress these issues once and for all and properly define Sales and Marketing. So why have these disagreements and misconceptions been allowed to fester for so long?

Firstly it’s worth reviewing some of the findings from Peter Finkelstein’s 2012 Whitepaper, “Why Marketing as we know it is dead”:

‘According to an article in Harvard Business Review (August 2012) traditional marketing – i.e. advertising, public relations, branding and corporate SM 1communications – has failed. And we at Barrett concur. Traditional marketing (which has become little more than an expensive, very often valueless mass communications methodology) has failed. As far as mass communications is concerned not only has it failed, the Internet and social media have surpassed anything the conventional marketing professionals have to offer. Marketing has been at death’s door for well over a decade. It’s just that marketing professionals don’t want to recognise the reality!

There are three pointers that prove this…

First, buyers are no longer paying much attention to marketing messages. Studies show that in the decision-making process traditional marketing communications techniques have very little credibility or relevance. Buyers are checking out product and service information in their own way, often through the Internet, links to business associates and through direct interaction with supplier organisations – many of whom communicate using smart-phone technology. And they are doing it in their own time, at little cost.

Secondly, in a devastating 2011 study[1] of 600 CEOs and decision-makers, around 73% (438) said that marketing officers (CMOs) lacked business credibility or the ability to generate sufficient business growth. Around 72% of respondents in the study indicated that they were tired of being asked for funds without being given any reassurance that the funds would generate incremental business. A significant group, 77% (462) are no longer interested in any talk about brand equity that can’t be directly linked to recognised financial metrics. That leaves only a handful of around 130 CEOs (21%) who are not necessarily dissatisfied, or satisfied with marketing‘s efforts.

The two key questions that need to be asked are…
•Why has marketing taken such a credibility beating?
•As important, why now is sales finally getting the professional recognition it really deserves?

Whilst over the decades of continually changing buying patterns and behaviours sales has made the necessary adjustments – from Snake Oil Selling in the 1890’s to the sophisticated Solutions Selling of the 21st Century – marketing has continued, in the face of the increasing change, to hang on to its outdated 1948model. And whilst the Internet is turning sales and marketing on their heads and rapidly changing the playing field – one click at a time – marketing is still struggling to make the move away from the old formula of Product, Price, Place and Promotion (i.e. the 4P’s) – developed by James Culliton. And though marketing has recognised the growing power of the Internet its practitioners have made the fatal error of trying to apply old models to new buying patterns. The result (as the Harvard article pointed out) is a disaster for marketing.

Thirdly, in today’s increasingly social media-infused environment, traditional marketing techniques not only don’t work, they make no sense. Trying to extend the 4 Ps to a world of social media simply misses the mark. Even FaceBook and Google can tell you all about it. It finds itself mired in an ongoing debate about whether marketing on either FaceBook or using Google Ads is as effective as it needs to be.

The reality is that the Internet, smart-phones and social media have changed the world of sales and marketing. The interesting thing is that both sales and marketing professionals saw the changes coming. Marketing did what it has traditionally done when under threat – resorted to a PR campaign to come up with “inspirational names” for doing the same old thing (e.g. relationship marketing, out-come focused branding, life-style communications and a myriad of other names used to disguise the use of the antiquated 4Ps model) in the hope that these would encourage people to believe marketing was up to the challenge.

Sales, on the other hand, has simply adapted the selling techniques to accommodate the avalanche that the Internet and social media represent in the way people buy. In turn this has bolstered the credibility of sales, at the same time as marketing are struggling to regain some vestige of credibility.

From a sales perspective, professional salespeople have learned that they needed to break the umbilical cord that has given them so much comfort in the past. It’s no longer up to marketing to generate leads for sales (which salespeople tend to decry as poor quality any way); it is no longer marketing’s role to create invitation lists to networking functions (that salespeople complain is not with the right people). Nor is it necessary for marketing to invest in expensive collateral and printed brochures that sales really only use as a crutch for a lack of product knowledge. Now these activities and many more are being performed jointly by effective sales and marketing teams. Teams that work collaboratively to engage with their buyers in a more holistic manner.’

So in a 21st century world what are some of the differences between Sales and Marketing?

Marketing is…
1.Marketing is one to many.
2.Marketing tells the stories (company, product, etc.) to many people.
3.Marketing looks after the brand’s reputation
4.Marketing needs to keep the stories circulating and resonating with the target markets using the company’s plumb line (the business of the business) as its central reference.
5.Marketing analyses the big data. Marketing brings you the average result not the specifics.
6.Marketing studies what experience customers expect when they buy or try a product, service or solution. That means reading their digital footprint and understanding their on-line chatter as much as it does focus group discussions. Marketing looks for new metrics about consumer clusters and grouping. On-line groups are markets of the near future as more and more people cocoon themselves and shop less
7.Marketing should not promote special prices and discounts, instead replace these with special offers, focusing on delivering greater value – more bang for the buck is the new mantra and greater value with fair exchange is the principle of pricing today – not cost plus as it has been in the past.

Sales is…
1.Sales is about one to one
2.Sales is where our business becomes real for the client. It is where the stories and brand come to life.
3.Sales develops relationships. It’s relationship driven
4.Sales looks after individuals.
5.Sales deals with the ambiguities and the details of each person. It cannot be averaged.
6.Sales analyses the behavior of the prospects and customers whom they deal with on an individual basis. Sales professionals talk to their customers about the joys of risk free offerings that help them realise their goals and objectives. They tap into their buyers’ Facebook, LinkedIn and other digital pages to gain a deeper understanding of what experiences each individual customers want.
7.Sales moves away from discussing price and discount, instead replacing these with discussions about total cost of ownership which includes price but extends to include deliveries, warranties, support, training and the other contributing things that are delivered as part of the purchase. Sale engages with customers to understand what risks they face when making a purchase and then learns how to position their companies as risk free alternatives.

The one thing Sales and Marketing must share in common is the company’s ‘plumb line’ and its stories. From many people to the individual, the central plumb line: the business of the business, needs to be consistent and help each customer connect in a meaningful and specific manner that is relevant to their situation and their view of the world.

Remember everybody lives by selling something.

Source: Linkedin.com, 20 february 2014
By: Sue B
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Do want to know more about the performance of your sales team? Click here: www.3s.se

Stress på jobbet kan ge depression

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on February 20th, 2014 by admin

Osäkra anställningar, stress och dåliga chefer på jobbet kan leda till depression. Det visar en rapport av Statens beredning för medicinsk utvärdering (SBU).
stress c
– Vi har gått igenom över 20 000 forskningsrapporter och det finns faktorer i arbetet som hänger samman med depression och utmattningssyndrom, framför allt på den psykosociala sidan, säger Charlotte Hall, projektledare för rapporten som presenteras på onsdagen.

Svensk arbetsmarknad har förändrats mycket de senaste åren med högre takt och krav på mer flexibla anställningsvillkor. Det har lett till höga sjuktal.

SBU har på uppdrag av regeringen undersökt vilken betydelse arbetsmiljö har för depression och utmattningssyndrom.
stress b
Rapporten slår fast att det finns vetenskapliga samband mellan faktorer på arbetet som stress, lågt stöd och rädsla att förlora jobbet, och hög förekomst av dessa båda tillstånd.

Källa: DN.se, 19 februari 2014
Av: Katarina Lagerwall (katarina.lagerwall@dn.se)
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Six social-media skills every leader needs

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet on February 19th, 2014 by admin

Organizational social-media literacy is fast becoming a source of competitive advantage. Learn, through the lens of executives at General Electric, how you and your leaders can keep up.

Few domains in business and society have been untouched by the emerging social-media revolution—one that is not even a decade old. Many organizations have been responding to that new reality, realizing the power and the potential of this technology for corporate life: wikis enable more efficient virtual collaboration in cross-functional projects; internal blogs, discussion boards, and YouTube channels encourage global conversations and knowledge sharing; sophisticated viral media campaigns engage customers and create brand loyalty; next-generation products are codeveloped in open-innovation processes; and corporate leaders work on shaping their enterprise 2.0 strategy.

SM skills CThis radical change has created a dilemma for senior executives: while the potential of social media seems immense, the inherent risks create uncertainty and unease. By nature unbridled, these new communications media can let internal and privileged information suddenly go public virally. What’s more, there’s a mismatch between the logic of participatory media and the still-reigning 20th-century model of management and organizations, with its emphasis on linear processes and control. Social media encourages horizontal collaboration and unscripted conversations that travel in random paths across management hierarchies. It thereby short-circuits established power dynamics and traditional lines of communication.

We believe that capitalizing on the transformational power of social media while mitigating its risks calls for a new type of leader. The dynamics of social media amplify the need for qualities that have long been a staple of effective leadership, such as strategic creativity, authentic communication, and the ability to deal with a corporation’s social and political dynamics and to design an agile and responsive organization.

Social media also adds new dimensions to these traits. For example, it requires the ability to create compelling, engaging multimedia content. Leaders need to excel at cocreation and collaboration—the currencies of the social-media world. Executives must understand the nature of different social-media tools and the unruly forces they can unleash.

Equally important, there’s an organizational dimension: leaders must cultivate a new, technologically linked social infrastructure that by design promotes constant interaction across physical and geographical boundaries, as well as self-organized discourse and exchange.

We call this interplay of leadership skills and related organizational-design principles organizational media literacy, which we define along six dimensions that are interdependent and feed on one another.
Our clearest window on the development of these new forms of literacy is General Electric, where one of us is responsible for leadership development. Witnessing GE through this lens is particularly interesting; unlike Google or Amazon, GE isn’t a digital native, and its 130-year tradition of reinventing businesses and itself makes it worth watching. So does GE’s status as a “leadership factory.”

GE’s commitment to social media is perhaps most visible through its digital platform GE Colab, designed by GE employees for GE employees to facilitate global teamwork and collaboration. GE Colab combines the capabilities of Facebook, Twitter, and other social applications, allowing easy networking, information sharing, instant communication, advanced search, blogging, videoblogs, and more. Launched in 2012, the platform has already attracted more than 115,000 users.1

To get a sense of how executives deal with these new realities, we interviewed GE officers of various businesses and regions. These leaders and their organizations are at different mileposts along the journey to social-media literacy, just as different companies are. In aggregate, though, they described a rich range of efforts to build personal skills, experiment with technologies, invest in new tools, expand employee participation, and shape organizational structures and governance to capture emerging social opportunities. We drew on those experiences to illustrate the six-dimensional set of skills and organizational capabilities leaders must build to create an enterprise level of media literacy—capabilities that will soon be a critical source of competitive advantage.

1. The leader as producer: Creating compelling content
With video cameras achieving near ubiquity and film clips uploading in the blink of an eye to YouTube or other platforms, the tools for producing and sharing rich media are in everyone’s hands. GE’s Video Central now houses thousands of videos, many created by top leaders. More than a few executives have started to incorporate video streams into their blogs. As video communication rises in importance, effective leadership will increasingly require the kind of creative skills we know from the world of “auteur” filmmaking—an authentic voice, imagination, and the ability to craft compelling stories and to turn them into media products that make people take note and “lean forward.” To engage in real time on a personal level, executives will also need the technical skills to master the basics of digital-multimedia production, including how to shoot and, if necessary, edit videos.
Mark Begor, who runs GE Capital’s real-estate business, was nervous when he shot his first “unplugged” video message. “I was used to a studio environment where I could do several takes and have editors polish what I wanted to say.” That unease soon vanished with practice. He now routinely produces a weekly five- to ten-minute video for his division. “I talk about what I learned during the week, about a great deal we’ve closed, and the status of the business. I also add comments about employees that I want to recognize.” Begor says that this routine forces him to crystallize his thinking and that creating short stories people can relate to makes him more aware of his strategy and communication.

As Begor and others have discovered in this process, the logic of participatory media is strikingly different from that of traditional corporate broadcast media, where each and every piece of communication gets perfectly crafted. Too much perfection is actually a barrier to collaboration and cocreation, as it disinvites participation. To thrive in the world of social media, leaders need to acquire a mind-set of openness and imperfection, and they must have the courage to appear “raw” and unpolished—traits that may be as challenging for them as developing the creative and technical-production skills.

2. The leader as distributor: Leveraging dissemination dynamics
Business leaders have traditionally disseminated information along a controlled, linear chain that begins after the development of a formal meaning-creation process—think of how your company creates and distributes memos explaining new initiatives. While traditional distribution pathways won’t disappear, social media revolutionizes the standard information process by reversing it. Social communication makes distribution the starting point and then invites company audiences to cocreate and contextualize content to create new meaning. Messages are rebroadcast and repurposed at will by recipients who repost videos, retweet and comment on blogs, and use fragments of other people’s content to create their own mash-ups.

As the (vertical) broadcast media and the (horizontal) participatory media converge, leaders need to master the interplay of two fundamentally different paradigms: those of the traditional channels, which follow the logic of control, and of the new channels, where it is essential to let the system’s dynamics work without too much direct intervention. Since executives won’t be able to govern or control a message once it enters the system, they must understand what might cause it to go viral and how it may be changed and annotated while spreading through the network. Distribution competence—the ability to influence the way messages move through complex organizations—becomes as important as the ability to create compelling content.

Equally important is the skill of creating and sustaining a body of social followers who help to spread and reinforce the message. It becomes critical toSM Skills B know who an organization’s key—and often informal—influencers are and to leverage their authority to push content through the right channels. Finally, leaders must recognize their role as redistributors of the content they receive, so they can leverage the communication continuously happening around them.

Lorraine Bolsinger, vice president and general manager of GE Aviation Systems, acquired these skills through experimentation. She began blogging a few years ago but initially didn’t get much response. “It took time to get my audience actively involved,” she recalls. “I had to find my voice and become more conversational, more easygoing.” To increase the allure and sustainability of the dialogue, she eventually created a “360 blog,” where all her direct reports blog with her on the same platform. This networked blog, with 12 regular contributors, provides additional points of view on issues, promotes more frequent communication, and attracts broader participation. Bolsinger says that the quality of her group’s dialogue about strategy and operations has improved thanks to these efforts.

3. The leader as recipient: Managing communication overflow
Social media has created an ocean of information. We are drowning in a never-ending flood of e-mails, tweets, Facebook updates, RSS feeds, and more that’s often hard to navigate. “There is too much noise out there,” says Stuart Dean, CEO of GE ASEAN,2

who is an active blogger and tweets regularly about issues in his market space. “I’d use Twitter much more as a source of information if I could get exactly what I need.”

Dean’s sentiment is echoed by most executives we know—many of them barely find time to catch up with their daily e-mail load. What to do? As a first step, leaders must become proficient at using the software tools and settings that help users filter the important stuff from the unimportant. But playing in today’s turbulent environment requires more than just filtering skills.

In traditional corporate communications, consumption is a mostly passive act: you are pretty much left alone to make sense of messages and to assess their authenticity and credibility. In the social-media realm, information gets shared and commented on within seconds, and executives must decide when (and when not) to reply, what messages should be linked to their blogs, when to copy material and mash it up with their own, and what to share with their various communities. The creation of meaning becomes a collaborative process in which leaders have to play a thoughtful part, as this is the very place where acceptance of or resistance to messages will be built.

“You have to see the entire communication universe, the interplay of traditional and social media,” says Bill Ruh, head of GE’s Software and Analytics Center. Just as leaders suffer from overflow, so do their people. “As a leader,” says Ruh, “you have to develop empathy for the various channels and the way people consume information.”

4. The leader as adviser and orchestrator: Driving strategic social-media utilization
In most companies, social-media literacy is in its infancy. Excitement often runs high for the technology’s potential to span functional and divisional silos. But without guidance and coordination, and without the capabilities we discuss here, social-media enthusiasm can backfire and cause severe damage.

To harvest the potential of social media, leaders must play a proactive role in raising the media literacy of their immediate reports and stakeholders. Within this 360-degree span, executives should become trusted advisers, enabling and supporting their environment in the use of social tools, while ensuring that a culture of learning and reflection takes hold. As a new and media-savvy generation enters the workplace, smart leaders can accelerate organizational change by harnessing these digital natives’ expertise through “reverse mentoring” systems (see later in this article).

Steve Sargent, president and CEO of GE Australia and New Zealand, believes that social media is reshaping the leadership culture by pushing executives to span geographic boundaries, engage more closely with stakeholders, and amplify the impact of employees at the periphery. Over the past five years, as proof of concept, Sargent has established a mining-industry network that cuts across GE’s businesses and regions, linking informal teams that use social platforms to collaborate on solving customer needs. GE employees in Brazil, for instance, now work with colleagues in Australia to develop products and services for customers doing business in both countries. The network’s success led the company to elevate it to the status of a full-fledged GE mining business. “Markets today are complex and multidimensional, and leadership isn’t about control but about enabling and empowering networks,” Sargent says. “The type of leadership we need finds its full expression in the DNA of collaborative technology, and I am determined to leverage this DNA as much as I can.”

To achieve this goal, leaders must become tutors and strategic orchestrators of all social-media activities within their control, including the establishment of new roles that support the logic of networked communication—for instance, community mentors, content curators, network analysts, and social entrepreneurs. Organizational units that leverage the new technologies in a coordinated and strategically aligned way will become more visible and gain influence in a corporation’s overall power dynamics.

5. The leader as architect: Creating an enabling organizational infrastructure
Leaders who have steeped themselves in new media will testify that it requires them to navigate between potentially conflicting goals: they must strive to establish an organizational and technical infrastructure that encourages free exchange but also enforce controls that mitigate the risks of irresponsible use. This is a tough organizational-design challenge.

Most companies have a defined formal organization, with explicit vertical systems of accountability. But below the surface of org charts and process manuals we find an implicit, less manageable “informal organization,” which has always been important and now gets amplified through social media. The leader’s task is to marry vertical accountability with networked horizontal collaboration in a way that is not mutually destructive.

SM skills AThis challenge is reflected in GE’s policies, which embrace the value of sharing expertise and perspectives with family, friends, colleagues, customers, and other stakeholders around the world. With this openness comes a shared responsibility: employees must observe GE standards of transparency and integrity, refrain from speaking on behalf of the company without authorization, and be clear in their social messaging that their views are personal.

In this spirit, creating a social architecture that provides a meaningful space for internal and external interactions has been an ongoing mission for Andrew Way, vice president of GE’s Oil & Gas Drilling & Surface Division. “I love the social-media stuff,” he says, “so I surround myself with an organization that supports it.”

In Way’s last role in the division, he and his team launched a video project about the history and current timeline of the business. Since the videos are shared with customers, team members must make choices about which content can cross external boundaries. “It’s an evolving thing. Every quarter, the team adds a new segment that features important things that happened in the last three months. It has resulted in a continuing story, and people look forward to every new version.”

Way says that the videos have united division members around common goals, helping to bring new employees on board and making everyone more proficient in using new media. “Three years ago, an effort like this would have used PowerPoint with a standardized font. It clearly has created a new culture.” Boosting engagement with stakeholders such as customers is an added benefit, since videos often include them in segments to help tell stories.

6. The leader as analyst: Staying ahead of the curve
As companies start to digest the consequences of the Web 2.0 revolution, the next paradigm shift is already knocking on the door. The next generation of connectivity—the Internet of Things—will link together appliances, cars, and all kinds of objects. As a result, there will be about 50 billion connected devices by the year 2020.3

This transformation will open new opportunities, spawn new business models, and herald yet another major inflection point that leaders must manage.

It’s imperative to keep abreast of such emerging trends and innovations—not just their competitive and marketplace implications, but also what they mean for communications technologies, which are fundamental for creating an agile, responsive organization. Executives who monitor weak signals and experiment with new technologies and devices will be able to act more quickly and capture the advantages of early adoption.

GE’s leadership university, Crotonville, is leading a number of initiatives to help top executives stay ahead of those changes. One example is a program called Leadership Explorations, launched in 2011 to support continuous learning for top executives and organized in locales connected with a specific strategic-leadership theme. In Silicon Valley, leaders are immersed in a range of cutting-edge technologies. Part of the program there involves “reverse mentoring,” which connects media-savvy millennials with senior GE leaders to discuss the latest tech buzz and practice. Many participants continue to exchange insights long after the formal session is over. Exposing seasoned leaders to the millennial mind-set encourages them to experiment with new technologies—which, in turn, helps them better engage with up and comers.

Clearly, these are early days. Most companies recognize social media as a disruptive force that will gather strength rather than attenuate. But social-media literacy as we define it here is not yet an element of leadership-competency models or of performance reviews and reward systems. Equally, it has not yet found its way into the curricula of business schools and leadership-development programs.

This needs to change. We are convinced that organizations that develop a critical mass of leaders who master the six dimensions of organizational media literacy will have a brighter future. They will be more creative, innovative, and agile. They will attract and retain better talent, as well as tap deeper into the capabilities and ideas of their employees and stakeholders. They will be more effective in collaborating across internal and external boundaries and enjoy a higher degree of global integration. They will benefit from tighter and more loyal customer relationships and from the brand equity that comes with them. They will be more likely to play leading roles in their industries by better leveraging the capabilities of their partners and alliances in cocreation, codevelopment, and overall industry collaboration. And they will be more likely to create new business models that capitalize on the potential of evolving communications technologies.

It takes guts to innovate radically in leadership and organization, for legacy systems, cultures, and attitudes are powerful forces of inertia. Fortunately, the inherent quality of social media is a powerful transformational force. Social-media engagement will confront leaders with the shortcomings of traditional organizational designs. Leaders who address these shortcomings will learn how to develop the enabling infrastructure that fosters the truly strategic use of social technologies. When organizations and their leaders embrace the call to social-media literacy, they will initiate a positive loop allowing them to capitalize on the opportunities and disruptions that come with the new connectivity of a networked society. And they will be rewarded with a new type of competitive advantage.

Source: McKinsey.com/insight
By: Roland Deiser and Sylvain Newton
About the authors: Roland Deiser is a senior fellow at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management at Claremont Graduate University and author of Designing the Smart Organization: How Breakthrough Corporate Learning Initiatives Drive Strategic Change and Innovation (John Wiley & Sons, October 2009). Sylvain Newton is the GE Crotonville Leadership Senior Leader for Business and Regions.
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Motivating people: Getting beyond money

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap, Lectures / Föreläsningar on February 16th, 2014 by admin

The economic slump offers business leaders a chance to more effectively reward talented employees by emphasizing nonfinancial motivators rather than bonuses.Companies around the world are cutting back their financial-incentive programs, but few have used other ways of inspiring talent. We think they should. Numerous studies have concluded that for people with satisfactory salaries, some nonfinancial motivators are more effective than extra cash in building long-term employee engagement in most sectors, job functions, and business contexts. Many financial rewards mainly generate short-term boosts of energy, which can have damaging unintended consequences. Indeed, the economic crisis, with its imperative to reduce costs and to balance short- and long-term performance effectively, gives business leaders a great opportunity to reassess the combination of financial and nonfinancial incentives that will serve their companies best through and beyond the downturn.
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A recent McKinsey Quarterly survey underscores the opportunity. The respondents view three noncash motivators—praise from immediate managers, leadership attention (for example, one-on-one conversations), and a chance to lead projects or task forces—as no less or even more effective motivators than the three highest-rated financial incentives: cash bonuses, increased base pay, and stock or stock options. The survey’s top three nonfinancial motivators play critical roles in making employees feel that their companies value them, take their well-being seriously, and strive to create opportunities for career growth. These themes recur constantly in most studies on ways to motivate and engage employees.

There couldn’t be a better time to reinforce more cost-effective approaches. Money’s traditional role as the dominant motivator is under pressure from declining corporate revenues, sagging stock markets, and increasing scrutiny by regulators, activist shareholders, and the general public. Our in-depth interviews with HR directors suggest that many companies have cut remuneration costs by 15 percent or more.

What’s more, employee motivation is sagging throughout the world—morale has fallen at almost half of all companies, according to another McKinsey survey
—at a time when businesses need engaged leaders and other employees willing to go above and beyond expectations. Organizations face the challenge of retaining talented people amid morale-sapping layoffs that tend to increase voluntary turnover over the medium term. Often, top performers are the first to go. Strong talent management is critical to recruit new ones from, for example, the financial sector, who have been laid off from their employers or feel disenchanted with them.

Yet while 70 percent of organizations have adjusted their reward-and-motivation programs during the past 12 months or plan to do so, relatively few have gone beyond the direct management of costs. Two-thirds of the executives we surveyed cited cost reductions as one of the top three reasons for the changes; 27 percent made changes to increase employee motivation; and only 9 percent had the goal of attracting new talent. Regional differences were striking. Forty-five percent of the respondents in developing markets, where economies have proved more robust, cited employee motivation as a key reason for modifying incentives, compared with only 19 percent in the United States and Western Europe, where the crisis hit hardest.

Even though overall reliance on financial incentives fell over the past 12 months, a number of companies curtailed their use of nonfinancial ones as well. Thirteen percent of the survey respondents report that managers praise their subordinates less often, 20 percent that opportunities to lead projects or task forces are scarcer, and 26 percent that leadership attention to motivate talent is less forthcoming.

Why haven’t many organizations made more use of cost-effective nonfinancial motivators at a time when cash is hard to find? One reason may be that many executives hesitate to challenge the traditional managerial wisdom: money is what really counts. While executives themselves may be equally influenced by other things, they still think that bonuses are the dominant incentive for most people. “Managers see motivation in terms of the size of the compensation,” explained an HR director from the financial-services industry.

Another reason is probably that nonfinancial ways to motivate people do, on the whole, require more time and commitment from senior managers. One HR director we interviewed spoke of their tendency to “hide” in their offices—primarily reflecting uncertainty about the current situation and outlook. This lack of interaction between managers and their people creates a highly damaging void that saps employee engagement.

Some far-thinking companies, though, are working hard to understand what motivates employees and to act on their findings. One global pharmaceutical company conducted a survey that showed that in some countries employees emphasized the role of senior leadership; in others, social responsibility. The company is now increasing the weight of engagement metrics in its management scorecard so that they are seen as core performance objectives. One biotech company has reframed the incentives issue by putting the focus on “recognition” instead of “reward” in order to inspire a more thoughtful discussion about what motivates people.

The top three nonfinancial motivators our survey respondents cited offer guidance on where management might focus. The HR directors we spoke with, for example, emphasized leadership attention as a way to signal the importance of retaining top talent. When one global pharma company’s CEO was crafting corporate strategy this year, he convened several focus groups of talented managers to generate ideas about how to create more value for the business. With the same aims, a leading beverage company asked every executive committee member to meet with the critical people in their own product groups.

“One-on-one meetings between staff and leaders are hugely motivational,” explained an HR director from a mining and basic-materials company—“they make people feel valued during these difficult times.” By contrast, our survey’s respondents rated large-scale communications events, such as the town hall meetings common during the economic crisis, as one of the least effective nonfinancial motivators, along with unpaid or partially paid leave, training programs, and flexible work arrangements. While communication is critical, attempts to convey messages about the state of the business often have some spin, one HR director told us.

A chance to lead projects is a motivator that only half of the companies in our survey use frequently, although this is a particularly powerful way of inspiring employees to make a strong contribution at a challenging time. Such opportunities also develop their leadership capabilities, with long-term benefits for the organization. One HR director in the basic-materials industry explained that involvement in special projects “makes people feel like they’re part of the answer—and part of the company’s future.” A leading company from the beverages industry, for example, selected 30 high-potential managers to participate in a leadership program that created a series of projects designed and led by the participants. “Now is the time to swim upstream and invest more in our high potentials,” said the HR director, when launching the program this year.

With profitability returning to some geographies and sectors, we see signs that bonuses will be making a comeback: for instance, 28 percent of our survey respondents say that their companies plan to reintroduce financial incentives in the coming year. While such rewards certainly have an important role to play, business leaders would do well to consider the lessons of the crisis and think broadly about the best ways to engage and inspire employees. A talent strategy that emphasizes the frequent use of the right nonfinancial motivators would benefit most companies in bleak times and fair. By acting now, they could exit the downturn stronger than they entered it.

Source: McKinsey Quaterly, 2009
By: martin Dewhurst and Matthew Guthridge
About the authors: Martin Dewhurst is a director in McKinsey’s London office, where Matthew Guthridge is an associate principal and Elizabeth Mohr is a consultant.
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Facebook knows when you’re about to update your relationship status

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Digitalisering / Internet on February 15th, 2014 by admin

Facebook released new findings on Friday — Valentine’s Day — that hints when two people are about to change their status to “in a relationship.”

In the three months (or about 100 days) before a couple updates their status to make their relationship Facebook official, the social network sees a steady increase in the number of timeline posts shared between the two. In fact, posting to each other’s pages will peak (1.67 posts) at 12 days before the relationships begin and when the update is officially made (“day 0”) posts typically start to decline.
“Presumably, couples decide to spend more time together, courtship is off, and online interactions give way to more interactions in the physical world,” the company said in an official blog post.
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Less interaction isn’t a bad thing, and posts shared tend to get sweeter and more positive following a relationship status update. To determine this, Facebook looked at words expressing positive emotions — such as “love”, “nice” and “happy” — compared to ones with negative connotation (“hate”, “hurt” and “bad”). Check out the graph below to note the increase.

Twitter also revealed which countries and U.S. regions tweet about being in love the most. Users in Israel say “I love you” most, followed by those in Sweden, Norway, Spain and Hungary. In the U.S., people in New York, Michigan and Nevada say those three words most on the site, while some of the least sentimental states are Montana, Idaho, Nebraska and New Hampshire.

Facebook only looked at couples who declared an anniversary date — and not just changed their relationship status — between 04/11/2010 and 10/21/2013 and remained “single” 100 days before and “in a relationship” 100 days after that date. The findings are a part of a larger six-part series that looks at love.

Source: Mashable.com, 15 February 2014
By: Samantha Murphy Kelly
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