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jerryking : inefficiencies   18

Cake shop management cannot suffice for a modern economy.
Feb 28, 2019 | Kaieteur News | Columnists, Peeping Tom.

Cake shop management cannot suffice for a modern economy.

The style of governance since political Independence has not been conducive to development. It is ill-suited for modernization. Given the expansive nature of relations and issues which governments have to address, there is a need for greater devolution of power. Centralized government can no longer cope with the multiple, overlapping and multilayered aspects of governance.......Guyana, however, is going in the opposite direction. The more modern the bureaucracy, the more swollen and overstaffed it becomes. The more complex government becomes, the more centralized is decision-making. The greater demands on resources, the bigger the bureaucracy.
The public bureaucracy is now a cancer. It is sucking the life out of public administration. Merely keeping this inefficient and revenue-guzzling monstrosity alive is costing taxpayers in excess of 500 million dollars per day. This is wanton wastage. That money could have been put to help boost private sector development to create jobs for the thousands of young people who are unemployed. The more the government implements technology, the more inefficient it becomes. It is all part of what is known as cake shop management........Guyana is going to continue to be left behind the rest of the world. It has seen Guyana retrogress and we will always be in a fire fighting mode rather than ensuring forward thinking and planning. A country today simply cannot be run like a cake shop. The world is too modern, and too many things are taking place to allow for such a style of governance. Once the policy is made by the government, the mechanics should be left to lower level officials who should be held accountable for ensuring its implementation and who should be held responsible for any failures........What is required is for faster decision-making so as to allow for the multitasking.........Plantain chips and breadfruit chips and other small businesses cannot make the economy grow. It cannot generate the massive jobs needed to impact on unemployment. It will not lift large numbers out of poverty. This is catch-hand approach to helping poor people.
Cake shop management cannot run a modern economy. Never has; never will.
bureaucracies  centralization  complexity  decision_making  devolution  Guyana  inefficiencies  modernization  policymaking  public_sector  public_servants  technology  traffic_congestion  forward-thinking  multitasking  decentralization  digital_economy  governance  knowledge_economy  centralized_control  implementation  unsophisticated 
march 2019 by jerryking
Music’s ‘Moneyball’ moment: why data is the new talent scout | Financial Times
JULY 5, 2018 | FT | Michael Hann.

The music industry loves to self-mythologise. It especially loves to mythologise about taking young scrappers from the streets and turning them into stars. It celebrates the men and women — but usually the men — with “golden ears” almost as much as the people making the music....A&R, or “artists and repertoire”, are the people who look for new talent, convince that talent to sign to the record label and then nurture it: advising on songs, on producers, on how to go about the job of being a pop star. It’s the R&D arm of the music industry......What the music business doesn’t like to shout about is how inefficient its R&D process is. The annual global spend on A&R is $2.8bn....and all that buys is the probability of failure: “Some labels estimate the ratio of commercial success to failure as 1 in 4; others consider the chances to be much lower — less than 1 in 10,” observes its 2017 report. Or as Mixmag magazine’s columnist The Secret DJ put it: “Major labels call themselves a business but are insanely unprofitable, utterly uncertain, totally rudderless and completely ignorant.”......The rise of digital music brought with it a huge amount of data which, industry executives realized, could be turned to their advantage. ....“All our business units must now leverage data and analytics in innovative ways to dig deeper than ever for new talent. The modern day talent-spotter must have both an artistic ear and analytical eyes.”

Earlier this year, in the same week as Warner announced its acquisition of Sodatone, a company that has developed a tool for talent-spotting via data, another data company, Instrumental, secured $4.2m of funding. The industry appeared to have reached a tipping point — what the website Music Ally called “A&R’s data moment”. Which is why, wherever the music industry’s great and good gather, the word “moneyball” has become increasingly prevalent.
........YouTube, Spotify, Instagram were born and changed the way talent begins its journey. All the barriers came down. Suddenly you’ve got tens of thousands of pieces of music content being uploaded.......Home computing’s democratization of recording removed the barriers to making high-quality music. No longer did you need access to a studio and an experienced producer, plus the money to pay for them. But the music industry had no way to keep abreast of these new creators. “....The way A&R people have discovered talent has barely changed since the music industry began, and it’s fundamentally the same for indie labels, who put artistry above sales, as it is for major labels who have to answer to shareholders. It’s always been about information.....“We find them by listening to new music constantly, by people giving us tips, by going out and seeing things that sound interesting,”.....“The most useful people to talk to are concert promoters and booking agents. They are least inclined to bullshit; they’ll tell you how many people an act is drawing,”...like labels, publishers also have an A&R function, signing up songwriters, many of whom will also be in bands)....“Journalists and radio producers are [also] very useful people to give you information. If you know you’ve got particular DJs or particular writers who are going to pick up something, that’s really good.”
.......Instrumental’s selling point is a dashboard called Talent AI, which scrapes data from Spotify playlists with more than 10,000 followers.....“We took a view that to build momentum on Spotify, you need to be on playlists,”....“If no one knows who you are, no one’s going to suddenly start streaming a track you’ve just put up. It happens when you start getting included on playlists.”......To make it workable, the Talent AI dashboard enables users to apply a series of filters to either tracks or artists: to sort by nationality, by genre, by number of playlists they appear on, by the number of playlist subscribers, by their industry standing — are they signed to a major? To an independent label? Are they unsigned?
.......What A&R people are looking for, though, is not totals, it’s evidence of momentum. No one wants to sign the artist who has reached maximum popularity. They want the artist on the way up....“It’s the direction. Is it going in the right direction?”....when it comes to assessing what an artist can offer, the data isn’t even always about the numbers. “The one I look at the most is Instagram, because that’s the easiest way for an artist to express themselves in a way other than the music — how they look, what they’re into,” she says. “That gives a real snapshot into [them] and whether they really have formulated a world for themselves or not.”......not everyone is delighted with the drive to data. “[the advent of] Spotify...became the driving force for signings...“A&Rs were using their eyes rather than their ears — watching numbers change rather than listening to music, and then jumping on acts....they saw something happening and got it out quickly without having to invest in the traditional A&R process.”... online heat tends to be generated by transient teenage audiences who are likely to move on rather than stick around for a decade: online presence is a big thing in electronic dance music, or some branches of urban music, in which an artist might only be good for a single song. In short, data does not measure quality; it does not tell you whether an artist has 20 good songs that can be turned into their first two albums; it does not tell you whether they can command a crowd in live performance..........The music industry, of course, has always had an issue with short-termism/short-sightedness: [tension] between the people who sign the cheques and those who go to bat for the artists is built into the way it works..........The problem is that without career artists, the music industry just becomes even more of a lottery. It is being made harder, not just by short-termism, but by the fact that music has become less culturally central. “It’s so much harder to connect with an audience or grow an audience, because there’s so much noise,”
.......Today the A&R...agree that the new data has its uses, but insist it still takes second place to the evidence of their own eyes and ears.......As for Withey, he is not about to tell the old-school scouts their days are done....Instrumental can tell A&R people which artists are hot, but not which are good. Also, there will be amazing acts who simply don’t get the traction on the internet to register on the Talent AI dashboard.....All of which will come as a relief to the people running those A&R departments. .....when asked if data will become the single most important factor in scouting talent: “I hope not. Otherwise we may as well have robots.” For now, at least, the golden ears are safe.
A&R  algorithms  analytics  data  dashboards  tips  discoveries  filters  hits  Instagram  inefficiencies  momentum  music  music_industry  music_labels  music_publishing  Moneyball  myths  playlists  self-mythologize  songwriters  Spotify  SXSW  success_rates  talent  talent_spotting  tipping_points  tracking  YouTube  talent_scouting  high-quality  the_single_most_important 
july 2018 by jerryking
To Survive in Tough Times, Restaurants Turn to Data-Mining
AUG. 25, 2017 | The New York Times | By KAREN STABINER.

“Silicon Valley looks at inefficiencies in the world, and they aim to disrupt the food space,” said Erik Oberholtzer, a founder and the chief executive of Tender Greens, a quick-service chain based in Los Angeles that is using data to guide its East Coast expansion.
data  data_mining  hard_times  inefficiencies  restaurants 
august 2017 by jerryking
Hyena capitalism receives a swift kick from the Unilever giraffe
25 February/26 February 2017 | FT| Robert Armstrong.

the rise in hyena capitalism — broadly, the emphasis on squeezing the maximum present return out of assets — is an effect of low economic growth. When the number of US workers was increasing and innovation was delivering faster productivity growth, there were lots of reasons to invest. Today it just makes more sense to focus on cost.....More generally, it may be that, since the financial crisis, spooked managements and, in the case of public companies, investors have become increasingly risk averse — more so than the state of the economy would justify. So money piles up on balance sheets, is paid as dividends, or goes to repurchase shares. Investment falls, despite the availability of cheap credit to fund new projects.
It also looks increasingly likely that the change in management incentive structures, in particular the increase in share-based incentives and shortening tenures for top executives, have made company leaders less inclined to invest. there is a risk that it could become self-reinforcing. Lack of investment affects not just future productivity, but also demand. At the extreme, if no one invests, no one earns and there is no growth. If companies are forgoing opportunities to invest, they are depriving the economy of customers with money to spend.
More insidiously, it could be that hyena capitalism undermines trust in the institutions and mores that makes corporate capitalism possible in the first place. If workers know they are regarded as dispensable cost centres, why should they commit to learning company-specific skills and procedures? Why not shirk instead? If the gains from corporate transformations go overwhelmingly to investors and financiers, why should voters support free market policies?
Capitalism needs both giraffes and hyenas. But in a time of modest growth, low productivity growth and rising inequality, one must keep an especially close eye on the hyenas.
CPG  Unilever  3G_Capital  private_equity  public_companies  consumer_goods  Kraft_Heinz  inefficiencies  capitalism  sweating_the_assets  undermining_of_trust  deprivations 
march 2017 by jerryking
Water Data Deluge: Addressing the California Drought Requires Access to Accurate Data - The CIO Report - WSJ
April 22, 2015| WSJ | By KIM S. NASH.

California, now in its fourth year of drought, is collecting more data than ever from utilities, municipalities and other water providers about just how much water flows through their pipes....The data-collection process, built on monthly self-reporting and spreadsheets, is critical to informing such policy decisions, which affect California’s businesses and 38.8 million residents. Some say the process, with a built-in lag time of two weeks between data collection and actionable reports, could be better, allowing for more effective, fine-tuned management of water.

“More data and better data will allow for more nuanced approaches and potentially allow the water system to function more efficiently,”...“Right now, there are inefficiencies in the system and they don’t know exactly where, so they have to resort to blanket policy responses.”...the State Water Resources Control Board imports the data into a spreadsheet to tabulate and compare with prior months. Researchers then cleanse the data, find and resolve anomalies and create graphics to show what’s happened with water in the last month. The process takes about 2 weeks....accuracy is an issue in any self-reporting scenario...while data management could be improved by installing smart meters to feed information directly to the Control Board automatically... there are drawbacks to any technology. Smart meters can fail, for example. “The nice thing about spreadsheets is anyone can open it up and immediately see everything there,”
lag_time  water  California  data  spreadsheets  inefficiencies  municipalities  utilities  bureaucracies  droughts  vulnerabilities  self-reporting  decision_making  Industrial_Internet  SPOF  bottlenecks  data_management  data_quality  data_capture  data_collection 
april 2015 by jerryking
Fresh Produce Group Chooses NetSuite Over the Competition
Challenges:
Previous systems provided limited visibility into company financial performance.
Vital information had to be retrieved from multiple sources, leading to frustrating delays in financial and management reporting.
High levels of manual processing were required to maintain spreadsheets for forecasting and inventory management, which was costly and prone to error.
An inefficient paper-based inventory management system meant perishable produce was regularly wasted.
Hours were also lost every week locating pallets on the warehouse floor.
Non-financial staff had very limited access to vital business data needed to be more accountable in their roles.
fresh_produce  ERP  challenges  information  IT  perishables  OPMA  spreadsheets  inefficiencies 
june 2014 by jerryking
Seven characteristics of great education systems
Sep. 02 2013 | The Globe and Mail | Editorials.
"Smartest Kids in the World"
* Mathematics is vital. Math is even more important than we knew. Math skills correlate highly with future income, and with academic success, research shows.
* Teachers should be highly prized. It should be difficult to become a teacher, and the job should be socially prestigious. Students, parents and bureaucrats respect teachers, because they know how hard it is to become one.
* Classroom technology is a waste of money. There’s no indication that fancy pedagogical doodads such as electronic whiteboards and tablets have a tangible effect on student performance.
* School should be about school. Rigour is key, and standards must be high.
* Extra help is widely available.
* Critical thinking is emphasized.
* No system is perfect. There are union squabbles, dissatisfied parents, policy shortcomings and rampant inefficiencies in even the highest-performing education systems.
books  education  howto  editorials  high_schools  ksfs  Finland  rigour  teachers  inefficiencies  mathematics  prestige 
september 2013 by jerryking
Welcome to 'Moral Hazard' - WSJ.com
October 2, 2008 | WSJ | By DANIEL HENNINGER.

"Moral hazard" is an odd phrase. Its meaning isn't obvious though it does sound like something one ought to avoid. "Moral hazard" dates back hundreds of years in obscurity, but its use eventually settled inside the insurance business in the 19th century. The French call it risque moral.

Back then, it really was taken to mean that reducing risk too much exposed people to the hazard of poor moral judgments. If an insurer charged too little for a policy to replace farms in the English countryside, Farmer Brown might be less careful about cows knocking over oil lamps in the barn.

In time, the economists got their hands on "moral hazard," and the first thing they did was strip out the heavy moral freight to make the concept value-neutral. Now moral hazard became less about judgment and more about the economic "inefficiencies" that occur in riskless environments.

We're back to the original meaning. Losing tons of money for an institution is an economic inefficiency. Lose the nation's financial structure, however, and moral fingers get wagged.
moral_hazards  Daniel_Henninger  automotive_industry  TARP  inefficiencies  riskless  19th_century 
june 2012 by jerryking
What Business Would You Start?
Mar 1, 2002 | Inc. Magazine |By Thea Singer.

The simple answer to the question 'How do you do this?' is, you find a really large market -- or one that's going to be large -- that's inefficient, and you come up with a breakthrough way of delivering value to customers that nobody has ever done before.
start_ups  advice  entrepreneur  opportunities  Dell  demographic_changes  financial_services  healthcare  education  travel  large_markets  inefficiencies 
may 2012 by jerryking
Humanity´s Greatest Achievement
2 October 2006 | Wall Street Journal| Johan Norberg.

The people we should thank are the innovators and entrepreneurs, the individuals who see new opportunities and risk exploring them -- the people who find new markets, create new products, think out new ways to handle commodities commercially, organize work in new ways, design new technology or transfer capital to more productive uses. The entrepreneur is an explorer, who ventures into uncharted territory and opens up the new routes along which we will all be traveling soon enough. Simply to look around is to understand that entrepreneurs have filled our lives with everyday miracles.

Entrepreneurs are serial problem-solvers who search out inefficiencies and find more practical ways of connecting possible supply with potential demand.
entrepreneurship  problem_solving  entrepreneur  innovation  uncharted_problems  new_businesses  inefficiencies  explorers  exploration 
november 2011 by jerryking
An emerging market for market data -
June 29, 2008 | The New York Times | By Tim Arango.

the company has been testing a program called Reuters Market Light for several months in Maharashtra, an Indian state about the size of Italy. The state is one of India's prominent agricultural centers, with farmers growing onions, oranges, corn, soybeans, wheat and bananas. But the farmers' business suffers from the difficulty of comparing prices from one market to another.

"We kind of saw that there was a clear market inefficiency," said Mans Olof-Ors, a Reuters employee who had the idea for Market Light three years ago. "The farmer would decide which market to travel to, then would just sell to that market. So there was no competition between markets."

Reuters has dispatched about 60 market reporters to the region to report on the going price for, say, oranges or onions, and to package the data into a text message that is sent to subscribers.

The service is signing up about 220 subscribers a day at a price of 175 rupees, or about $4.10, for three months at post offices throughout Maharashtra. The average monthly income of a farm household is about $50, according to the Indian government. The service has about 40,000 customers so far - a tiny portion of India's farm population, which is in the hundreds of millions, but it proves that many farmers are hungry for more information.

Reuters has collected anecdotal evidence from farmers about how the service has influenced their decisions about crop sales. One farmer, according to Reuters, held back the sale of 30 quintals of soybeans - one quintal equals 100 kilograms, or 220 pounds - for 15 days after noticing that prices had been rising for several days. He was able to get 400 extra rupees a quintal.

Amit Mehra, managing director of Market Light, said early data showed that most subscribers were making more money from their crops.
food_crops  Thomson_Reuters  India  farmers'_markets  pricing  data  market_inefficiencies  inefficiencies  mobile_phones  text_messages  data_marketplaces  anecdotal 
october 2011 by jerryking
The next big tech revolution? The global brain - The Globe and Mail
Sep. 22, 2011 | Globe and Mail | CHRYSTIA FREELAND.

Mr. Milner, in contrast, almost perfectly represents a technology elite with a global reference: He lives in Moscow, recently bought a home in Silicon Valley, and addressed the Ukrainian conference by video link from Singapore. From that vantage point, the most pressing issue in the world today isn’t recession and political paralysis in the West, or even the rapid development and political transformation in emerging markets, it is the technology revolution that, in his view, is only getting started.

Here are some of the changes he sees as most significant:

The Internet revolution is the fastest economic change humans have experienced, and it is accelerating. Two billion people are online today, he noted; he predicts that number will double over the next decade.

The Internet is not just about connecting people, it is also about connecting machines, a phenomenon he dubbed “the Internet of things.” Five billion devices are connected today, he said; by 2020, he thinks more than 20 billion will be.

More information is being created than ever before. He asserted that as much information was created every 48 hours in 2010 as was created between the dawn of time and 2003. In 10 years, that much data will be generated every 60 minutes.

The result is the dominance of Internet platforms relative to traditional media, he said: “The largest newspaper in the United States is only reaching 1 per cent of the population ... That compares to Internet media, which is used by 25 per cent of the population daily and growing.”

Internet businesses are much more efficient than brick-and-mortar companies. This was one of his most striking observations, and a clue to the paradox of how we find ourselves simultaneously living in a time of what he views as unprecedented technological innovation but also high unemployment in the developed West. As Mr. Milner said: “Big Internet companies on average are capable of generating revenue of $1-million per employee, and that compares to 10 to 20 per cent of that which is normally generated by traditional offline businesses of comparable size.” As an illustration, he cited Facebook, where, he said, each single engineer supports one million users.

Finally – and Mr. Milner admitted this was “a bit of a futuristic picture” – he predicted “the emergence of the global brain, which consists of all the humans connected to each other and to the machine and interacting in a very unique and profound way, creating an intelligence that does not belong to any single human being or computer.”
Chrystia_Freeland  Yuri_Milner  e-commerce  Industrial_Internet  tech-utopianism  networks  connected_devices  platforms  collective_intelligence  efficiencies  inefficiencies 
october 2011 by jerryking
THE BIGGEST GROUPS ARE ILL WITH INEFFICIENCY
April 06 2011 | FT | Luke Johnson
● Sunk cost fallacy:
● Groupthink:
● An obsession with governance:
● Institutional capture: the phenomenon whereby mgmt. end up running an
enterprise for their own benefit, rather than for the real owners. Also
known as the principal/agent problem.
● Office politics: self-destructive infighting for power within large
businesses is endemic, and perhaps the biggest value destroyer of all.
● Lack of proprietorship:
● Risk aversion: in large corporates, the punishment for management
failure is greater than the rewards for success. So, rational
individuals pursue cautious strategies to avoid damaging their career
prospects. (aka "playing it safe")
● The burden of history: many older companies have legacy issues such as
pension scheme deficits, union contracts, inefficient equipment and so
on.
● Anonymous mediocrities: there is nowhere to hide in a small company –
if you can’t deliver, you’re out.
● Commodity products: large companies need large markets,
playing_it_safe  start_ups  inefficiencies  size  groupthink  Luke_Johnson  large_markets  large_companies  bureaucracies  risk-aversion  mediocrity  owners  office_politics  commodities  self-destructive  brands  legacy_tech 
april 2011 by jerryking
For Many Entrepreneurs, Running the Show is Stressful - WSJ.com
JANUARY 10, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | by COLLEEN DEBAISE.
Work-related pressure can lead to a host of stress-induced problems:
headaches, sleepless nights, irritability, weight gain and lost
productivity, among others. The best method of combating
business-related stress is to plan. Entrepreneurs who haven't updated or
assembled their business plan (for more on business plans, click here)
can feel directionless, inefficient and overwhelmed— all of which
contribute to stress. Writing out even a simple plan can prevent
overload while also providing a viable road map to success.
business_planning  directionless  inefficiencies  planning  overwhelmed  small_business  stressful 
january 2010 by jerryking
Mark Cuban a change genius: Entrepreneur sees it as an opportunity waiting to happen
Nov 10, 2000 | National Post. pg. C.2 | by Ellie Rubin.
Discusses a WORTH magazine profile of entrepreneur Mark Cuban. Rubin is
struck by his approach to creating opportunity--his unique ability to
exploit change. Inefficiencies, opportunities and frailties: the only
thing you can depend on in business is change--embrace it! In doing so,
you will inevitably bump up against an opportunity waiting to happen.
Or, in "Cuban" terms, you will develop "a knack for spotting
inefficiencies, opportunities and frailties." The best way to scope out
inefficiencies within an industry is to create a product or service
that has a certain sense of urgency to it, or "high pain threshold"
opportunities. By focusing on an area of inefficiency that is creating
dramatic financial, human resource or market share pressure, one will
find that the decision makers who are managing this "pain" are eager to
invest in a sound and reliable solution--quickly.
creative_thinking  opportunistic  frictions  opportunities  constant_change  rainmaking  entrepreneur  Mark_Cuban  inspiration  inefficiencies  problem_solving  wealth_creation  urgency  pain_points  overlooked_opportunities  human_frailties 
october 2009 by jerryking
Ping - We Rent Movies, So Why Not College Textbooks?
July 4, 2009 | - NYTimes.com | By MIGUEL HELFT. Chegg.com, a
company that rents textbooks to college students. The textbook business
is wildly inefficient. With demand for good deals on textbooks running
high, Chegg’s success comes in large part from being able to address
those inefficiencies. While Chegg primarily rents books, it is also
essentially acting as a kind of “market maker,” gathering books from
sellers at the end of a semester and renting — or sometimes selling —
them to other students at the start of a new one. That provides
liquidity to the market.
business_models  Netflix  textbooks  second_hand  Colleges_&_Universities  e-commerce  rentals  Chegg  inefficiencies  market_liquidity  market_makers 
july 2009 by jerryking
Energy-Efficient Lighting Shines With Investors
Sep 5, 2007 Wall Street Journal. (Eastern edition). New York, N.Y.: . pg. B.3A by Jonathan Shieber.
energy  electric_lights  inefficiencies  lighting 
march 2009 by jerryking

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