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jerryking : market_saturation   3

Tills and skills: How to prepare America’s retail workers for technological change | The Economist
May 12th 2017

America’s retail industry is huge: it employs 15.9m workers, who represent one in nine American jobs. It is also undergoing wrenching change, as e-commerce eats into sales. There is no more pressing test of society’s ability to cope with technology’s impact on work....For all the benefits that online retailing brings to consumers, it is causing immense pain to offline rivals. Last year 4,000 American stores closed; this year more than twice that number may shutter. Standard & Poor’s, a rating agency, expects retail defaults this year to outnumber those in 2009, at the height of the global recession. Some formats—discount stores, groceries, high-end malls—will continue to thrive. But many will shrink. The industry has shed 50,000 net jobs since January. Department stores may need to close more than 800 stores to reach the productivity levels of 2006. Many outlets are looking for ways to cut labour costs by embracing automation....The problems faced by America’s retailers are particularly acute because there are so many of them: shopping centres eat up five times more space per person than in Britain. But the threat posed by technology is familiar to workers elsewhere. In Japan, online sales menace small, specialty shops that account for roughly half of sales. The Eurasia Group, a consultancy, reckons that 192m retail jobs around the world are vulnerable to automation.....A 21st-century approach to careers advice would see employers across industries identify transferable skills: rather than thinking of e-commerce as a natural move for shop assistants, their ability to handle customers might make them more suitable for roles in health care, for example. Armed with such advice, people in at-risk industries such as retailing could be given learning accounts, topped up by government, that can be used to pay for new skills. Benefits could be made more portable, making it easier for workers to switch between full-time employment and the gig economy as circumstances change.
job_destruction  job_displacement  job_loss  e-commerce  store_closings  retailers  Standard_&_Poor’s  grocery  shopping_malls  department_stores  oversaturation  safety_nets  automation  technological_change  market_saturation  transferable_skills 
may 2017 by jerryking
12 Big Ideas for the Financial Services Industry in 2012
JAN 1, 2012 | American Banker Magazine Article |Glen Fest, Bonnie McGeer, Alan Kline, Heather Landy, Laura Thompson Osuri and Jeremy Quittner contributed to this story.

THE BREADBASKET ECONOMY

There's a healthy debate going on as to whether the current boom in agriculture is a bubble just waiting to burst. But here's an idea that would extend the good times in farm country long into the future: as emerging markets around the globe start realizing their economic potential, and as birth rates in those regions trigger a population explosion, the United States is in a unique position to become the world's breadbasket.

"The next 25 years is going to be characterized by real supply-demand issues all related around population growth and lack of food, and I think the U.S. has the opportunity to become the equivalent of the Saudi Arabia of food," says Meredith Whitney of Meredith Whitney Advisory Group.

It's anyone's guess as to whether this long-term prediction will be as prescient as her famous call on Citigroup or as humbling as the one she made on municipal bond defaults.

Either way, the Midwest may deserve some extra attention from banks these days. While the East and West coasts have long offered better growth opportunities for banks (fueled in part by the technology boom and the crisis-inducing housing bubble), these markets are now heavily burdened with many of the industry's most vexing problems, including intense branch saturation and a concentration of sludgy real estate assets.

And if Whitney is right about the rise of a food-based economy, then agriculture—which some big commercial banks were happy to leave while they pursued sexier businesses like investment banking—would be a major growth area, and some banks might want to consider reclaiming their stake in it
agriculture  farming  Meredith_Whitney  future  ideas  Midwest  farmland  market_saturation 
december 2012 by jerryking
Growing at a Smart Pace
Growing at a Smart Pace

What Every CEO Should Know About Creating New Businesses
1 Ultimately, growth means starting new businesses.
Most firms have no alternative. Sectors decline, as they did for Pullman’s railroad cars and Singer’s sewing machines. Technology renders products and services obsolete—the fate Polaroid suffered, as digital cameras decimated its instant photography franchise. Markets saturate, as Home Depot is now finding, after establishing more than a thousand stores nationwide.
2 Most new businesses fail.
3 Corporate culture is the biggest deterrent to business creation.
New ventures flourish best in open, exploratory environments, but most large corporations are geared toward mature businesses and efficient, predictable operations.
4 Separate organizations don’t work—or at least not for long.
5 Starting a new business is essentially an experiment.
6. New businesses proceed through distinct stages, each requiring a different
7. New business creation takes time--a lot of time.
8. New businesses need help fitting in--"bridging"--with established systems and structures.
9. The best predictors of success are market knowledge and demand-driven products and services.
10. An open mind is hard to find.
growth  Thomas_Stewart  HBR  CEOs  Junior_Achievement  hard_to_find  start_ups  failure  organizational_culture  experimentation  trial_&_error  life_cycle  tacit_data  entrepreneurship  dedication  obsolescence  demand-driven  infrastructure  new_businesses  bridging  large_companies  customer-driven  market_saturation  Home_Depot  Fortune_500  mindsets  open_mind  decline  Michael_McDerment  Polaroid  digital_cameras 
december 2012 by jerryking

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