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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
Folks, We’re Home Alone
SEPT. 27, 2017 | The New York Times | Thomas L. Friedman.

we’re going through three climate changes at once:

We’re going through a change in the actual climate — disruptive, destructive weather events are steadily on the rise.

We’re going through a change in the “climate” of globalization — going from an interconnected world to an interdependent one, from a world of walls where you build your wealth by hoarding the most resources to a world of webs where you build your wealth by having the most connections to the flow of ideas, networks, innovators and entrepreneurs. In this interdependent world, connectivity leads to prosperity and isolation leads to poverty. We got rich by being “America Connected” not “America First.”

Finally, we’re going through a change in the “climate” of technology and work. We’re moving into a world where computers and algorithms can analyze (reveal previously hidden patterns); optimize (tell a plane which altitude to fly each mile to get the best fuel efficiency); prophesize (tell you when your elevator will break or what your customer is likely to buy); customize (tailor any product or service for you alone); and digitize and automatize more and more products and services. Any company that doesn’t deploy all six elements will struggle, and this is changing every job and industry.

What do you need when the climate changes? Adaptation — so your citizens can get the most out of these climate changes and cushion the worst. Adaptation has to happen at the individual, community and national levels.

At the individual level, the single most important adaptation is to become a lifelong learner, so you can constantly add value beyond what machines and algorithms can do.

“When work was predictable and the change rate was relatively constant, preparation for work merely required the codification and transfer of existing knowledge and predetermined skills to create a stable and deployable work force,” explains education consultant Heather McGowan. “Now that the velocity of change has accelerated, due to a combination of exponential growth in technology and globalization, learning can no longer be a set dose of education consumed in the first third of one’s life.” In this age of accelerations, “the new killer skill set is an agile mind-set that values learning over knowing.”
GOP  Democrats  Donald_Trump  Tom_Friedman  climate_change  adaptability  extreme_weather_events  Dean_Acheson  weather  interconnections  interdependence  data_driven  wealth_creation  life_long_learning  the_single_most_important 
september 2017 by jerryking
HOW TO: Land a Business Development Job
So you want to be a business development professional? The job title has certainly become a coveted one of late, especially in the tech sector where the business guys and gals are the ones forging newsworthy partnerships.
The question is, do you know what the job entails? Even then, do you know how and where to start on this newfound career path? Or better yet, do you have the qualities that make for success in these always-on positions?
Mashable interviewed six experts in the field at various stages in their careers to get their tips on what it takes to become a business development professional at technology companies and startups.
Biz Dev ProsHere is some background information on these six seasoned business development professionals.
Charles Hudson: Newly turned entrepreneur Charles Hudson was the vice president of business development at Serious Business, a top social game developer acquired by Zynga in February. Previous engagements include senior business development positions at Gaia Online and Google. Hudson also produces two conferences focused on gaming: Virtual Goods Summit and Social Gaming Summit. Hudson is now co-founder of Bionic Panda Games.
Jesse Hertzberg: Hertzberg is the former vice president of operations and business development at Etsy, the immensely popular social commerce site for handmade and vintage items now valued at close to $300 million. Hertzberg currently advises a number of startups, including Squarespace, and is the founder of BigSoccer.
Matt Van Horn: Van Horn is the vice president of business development at the super stealth startup Path. His past jobs include more than three years working in business development for Digg, as well as a four-year stint with Apple while attending college.
Tristan Walker: Walker is the up-and-coming investment-banker-turned-tech-star heading Foursquare’s business development efforts. Walker is directly responsible for coordinating a majority of the trendy startup’s biggest strategic partnerships. This role has also brought considerable visibility to Walker, who’s been featured in Vibe Magazine, as well as named in The Hollywood Reporter’s Digital Power 50 list, Black Enterprise’s 40 Next list and Mediaweek’s 50:20 to Watch list.
Jason Oberfest: Oberfest is the vice president of social applications at game developer Ngmoco, which was recently acquired by DeNA for $300 million with a potential $100 million more in post-acquisition bonuses. Prior to joining to Ngmoco, Oberfest was the senior vice president of business development at MySpace, and before that the managing director of business development at Los Angeles Times Interactive.
Cortlandt Johnson: Johnson is the chief evangelist at SCVNGR and actively works to recruit businesses to participate in the startup’s rewards program. Johnson also co-founded DartBoston, an event-centric community designed to connect entrepreneurs and professionals in the Boston area.
Education and Internships

What undergraduate school should I attend? Do I need to go to grad school? What about internships? These are all questions you’re likely to face as you explore a future in business development. The esteemed professionals we interviewed all have backgrounds of varying degrees, so we asked for their input on these subject matters.
Walker’s own personal story is perhaps the most unique example of how to come by a business development position. While certainly making his mark in business development now, Walker initially pursued a career on Wall Street before packing it up and heading to Stanford Graduate School of Business, a shift that pushed him in the tech direction.
All things considered, does Walker recommend internships? “Certainly depends,” he says. However, based on his own internship experiences, “if you want to work in tech long term, interning at an investment bank may not make the most sense,” he jokes.
Hertzberg is a big proponent of internships. “Interning is the best job interview you can ever get, and is critical to beginning to build your professional network. Some of my favorite professional relationships are with folks who once interned for me,” he says.
Johnson suggests going after internships that push you outside your comfort zone. “The goal of my internships was to learn how to interact with all kinds of people. I always went after positions that forced me into different types of situations, whether they be social or otherwise,” says Johnson.
Grad school is something Walker has a bit more conviction about. In his words, “B-school” is “very important … not only for the skills (i.e. accounting, finance, operations, etc.) that could be beneficial for all managers to comprehend long term, but also for the softer skills of ‘people management.’”
Oberfest found an immediate opening in the biz dev field right as he was starting out. “I was fortunate to get my career started at the beginning of the first Internet boom, so for me it was trial by fire,” he explains.
If you’re on the fence about grad school, consider the following statement from Oberfest. “Grad school can help, but [it] is not a requirement. Good knowledge of the mechanics of deals — how to structure and negotiate deals — is an important component of the job and an MBA or JD can certainly help there, but I think the single most important attribute of an exceptional business development person is good product intuition.”[jk: being product-orientated}
Van Horn is also proof that graduate degrees aren’t absolute requirements. “I’ve never attended graduate school, but if you’re able to attend a top tier school, I hear you build an incredible network for life,” he says.
Instead, Van Horn spent his undergraduate college years working for Apple. “It’s very powerful to have a big brand behind your resume,” Van Horn shares. “I worked for Apple for four years doing campus marketing while in college and it helped a lot.”
For Hertzberg, his MBA, “was worth half of what I paid for it, as I already had a business background.” But, he says, “The network is why you go and, yes, that has been worth its weight in gold.”
Required Reading

All of the professionals we talked to strongly advocate that those aspiring to work in the field read up on mentors past.
Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time, by Keith Ferrazzi is Van Horn’s personal favorite read.Johnson, who also recommends Never Eat Alone, finds Tim Sanders’s Love is the Killer App: How to Win Business and Influence to be an important read as well.Walker suggests that business development professionals-in-training pick up a copy of Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini.Unfortunately, it takes more than a few good books to read your way to success. Hertzberg recommends an aggressive approach to ongoing education that entails consuming as much information as possible.
“Read industry rags voraciously and know who is starting up, who is funded, who is growing, who is cutting what deals, etc.” he says. “Have a deep and holistic understanding of the industry and marketplace beyond just your company’s focus.”
Hudson strongly advises that, “all BD people, especially start-up BD people, should read Steve Blank’s work on customer discovery. That’s a big part of your job.” You might also want to start by reading Hudson’s own in-depth article on what being the “business guy” at a startup entails.
Must-Have Qualities

If you want to work in business development, and do so successfully, these experts agree that there’s one thing you absolutely need — a tangible passion for product.
In actionable terms, Walker describes this as a “tireless hustle.” Van Horn agrees. “I think you need to be passionate and have hustle,” he says.
Van Horn also recommends being an “early adopter of interesting products. If you’re looking for a technology job, make sure you use every awesome sounding new product you read on Mashable.”
Those best suited for business development roles are the make-it-work types, says Johnson. “The most successful people I’ve met are those who know how to quickly adapt and hustle to find ways to overcome any obstacles put in their way,” he advises.
Oberfest believes these three qualities are key: the ability to “quickly read people,” innate negotiation sensibilities and an appreciation for long-term relationships.
Hertzberg reminds that “you have to like people,” if you want to do well in a biz dev role.
Hudson agrees and points to human-to-human interaction as a huge part of the job. “If you want to go into business development, I think you have to be good at dealing with and understanding people. If you’re not comfortable with interpersonal communications and relationship management, it probably isn’t the right job for you,” he says.
On the flip side, Walker says that those possessing a “lack of humility” are least suited for biz dev positions. In a similar vein, Hertzberg says, “Be humble. Always represent your company’s brand faithfully. Constantly work to enhance and preserve that brand. Remember that your personal brand will never be bigger than your company’s.”
Getting Your First Biz Dev Job

For those just looking to get their foot in the door somewhere, knowing the answer to the question, “How does one get a biz dev job?” is of the utmost importance. We posed this particular question to our professionals, who all have slightly different, but uniquely encouraging takes on how and where to get started.
“For me it started with just recognizing the pretty significant business opportunity at a startup that I was already passionate about,” says Walker. “It always starts with product, then recognizing the opportunity on top of that.”
If you’re still an entry-level professional, Oberfest recommends not taking a job in business development at first, but rather in product management.
“I would first go work as a product manager in the industry you are passionate … [more]
business_development  job_search  social_media  social_networking  marketing  product-orientated  tristan_walker  via:sfarrar  thinking_holistically  top-tier  the_single_most_important 
august 2016 by jerryking
Lunch with the FT: Marc Andreessen
January 16, 2015 | - FT.com | Caroline Daniel.

As a child, Andreessen was fascinated by technology. “I have the complete series of Tom Swift from the 1910s to 1950s in my office. That was probably the single most important thing I read,” he says of the science-fiction and adventure books featuring a teenaged inventor hero (Tom Swift and his Photo Telephone was one 1912 title). “I liked all the stuff he’s inventing.”
Marc_Andreessen  Silicon_Valley  entrepreneurship  virtual_currencies  crypto-currencies  digital_currencies  currencies  metacurrencies  Andreessen_Horowitz  Twitter  the_single_most_important 
january 2015 by jerryking
Powerful Thoughts From Paul Graham — Ross Hudgens
21. Empathy is probably the single most important difference between a good hacker and a great one. Some hackers are quite smart, but practically solipsists when it comes to empathy. It’s hard for such people to design great software, because they can’t see things from the user’s point of view.

25. In a field like physics, if we disagree with past generations it’s because we’re right and they’re wrong. But this becomes rapidly less true as you move away from the certainty of the hard sciences. By the time you get to social questions, many changes are just fashion.

34. Whatever the reason, there seems a clear correlation between intelligence and willingness to consider shocking ideas. This isn’t just because smart people actively work to find holes in conventional thinking. Conventions also have less hold over them to start with. You can see that in the way they dress.

43. E.B. White was amused to learn from a farmer friend that many electrified fences don’t have any current running through them. The cows apparently learn to stay away from them, and after that you don’t need the current. | If you’re a hacker who has thought of one day starting a startup, there are probably two things keeping you from doing it. One is that you don’t know anything about business. The other is that you’re afraid of competition. Neither of these fences have any current in them.

50. But since for most of the world’s history the main route to wealth was to steal it, we tend to be suspicious of rich people.

59. “A lot of the (people applying to be graduate students at MIT) seem smart,” he said. “What I can’t tell is whether they have any kind of taste.” Taste. You don’t hear that word much now. And yet we still need the underlying concept, whatever we call it. What my friend meant was that he wanted students who were not just good technicians, but who could use their technical knowledge to design beautiful things.

64. Good design resembles nature. It’s not so much that resembling nature is intrinsically good as that nature has had a long time to work on the problem. So it’s a good sign when your answer resembles nature’s.

70. You’re most likely to get good design if the intended users include the designer himself. When you design something for a group that doesn’t include you, it tends to be for people you consider less sophisticated than you, not more sophisticated. And looking down on the user, however benevolently, always seems to corrupt the designer. [Good design therefore requires personal risk? having skin in the game?]

76. “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.” – C.S. Lewis
biomimicry  business  inspiration  productivity  quotes  start_ups  Paul_Graham  Y_Combinator  via:hotchkiss  empathy  design  UX  hackers  personal_risk  PhDs  aesthetics  dangerous_ideas  smart_people  the_single_most_important 
november 2014 by jerryking
The Family Stories That Bind Us — This Life - NYTimes.com
By BRUCE FEILER
Published: March 15, 2013

The single most important thing you can do for your family may be the simplest of all: develop a strong family narrative..... Psychologists have found that every family has a unifying narrative, he explained, and those narratives take one of three shapes.

First, the ascending family narrative: “Son, when we came to this country, we had nothing. Our family worked. We opened a store. Your grandfather went to high school. Your father went to college. And now you. ...”

Second is the descending narrative: “Sweetheart, we used to have it all. Then we lost everything.”

“The most healthful narrative,” Dr. Duke continued, “is the third one. It’s called the oscillating family narrative: ‘Dear, let me tell you, we’ve had ups and downs in our family. We built a family business. Your grandfather was a pillar of the community. Your mother was on the board of the hospital. But we also had setbacks. You had an uncle who was once arrested. We had a house burn down. Your father lost a job. But no matter what happened, we always stuck together as a family.’ ”

Dr. Duke said that children who have the most self-confidence have what he and Dr. Fivush call a strong “intergenerational self.” They know they belong to something bigger than themselves.... Any number of occasions work to convey this sense of history: holidays, vacations, big family get-togethers, even a ride to the mall. The hokier the family’s tradition, he said, the more likely it is to be passed down. He mentioned his family’s custom of hiding frozen turkeys and canned pumpkin in the bushes during Thanksgiving so grandchildren would have to “hunt for their supper,” like the Pilgrims.
bouncing_back  Communicating_&_Connecting  family  family_breakdown  family_trees  generational_wealth  legacies  mission_statements  narratives  origin_story  resilience  sense-of-belonging  storytelling  the_single_most_important  values 
june 2013 by jerryking
How branding should boost your bottom line
December 5, 2012 |Toronto Caribbean | JG Francoeur.

“The single most important decision in evaluating a business is pricing power. If you’ve got the power to raise prices without losing business to a competitor, you’ve got a very good business. And if you have to have a prayer session before raising the price by 10 percent. then you’ve got a terrible business.” says Warren Buffet. If you employ solid branding techniques you can do the same with your business. raise your prices and boost your income!
To build a good brand you must focus on the 5 P5 of branding. Start by answering this questions and building your branding plan.
* First is purpose: When someone hears your name. what do you want them to think?
* Second is proposition: Your proposition is your core competency. You've got to know yourself to grow yourself!
* Third is packaging: 55 percent of how people perceive you is visual and most small business owners look small, unprofessional and unreliable. You must convey an image that will inspire confidence for your prospects.
* Fourth are people: It’s simple but powerful, your net worth is equal to your network of people. Big brands are surrounded by other big brands and you can do the same if you employ a partnership model.
* Fifth is perseverance: Many business owners think clients will fall from the sky. They try one venture or one marketing initiative and because it’s not successful they quit. You must never quit because your dream is important not only to you but to others who you will inspire along the way.
branding  howto  brands  brand_purpose  packaging  perseverance  purpose  value_propositions  human_capital  the_single_most_important  pricing  Warren_Buffett  price_hikes 
december 2012 by jerryking
Merchant bankers
November 29, 1996 | The Globe & Mail (Report on Business)| Guy Rosa.

In a country where little is done to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit, merchant bankers fuel what may be the single most significant factor to the resurgence of the Canadian economy.
Canada's major banks have not realized the importance of their roles as financiers of entrepreneurs. The problem: Entrepreneurs are a hit-and-miss group of individuals who carry with them the high risk of failure. It is understandable, therefore, that the only source of financing for this special breed of business persons are successful entrepreneurs. who know that a little bit of desire and hard work can go a long way.
The fact is that with unemployment lingering around 10 per cent, and a job market as stagnant as it is. entrepreneurs will be the single most important contributors to the growth of our economy. In Canada. the federal government, our major banks and our universities have created a restricted environment with regard to promoting entrepreneurial spirit. Merchant bankers, on the other hand, have reaped the rewards of promoting entrepreneurial spirit. and in so doing have paved the road others should follow.
Guy Rosa Jerseyville, Ont.
dynamism  letters_to_the_editor  merchant_banking  private_equity  hard_work  hit-and-miss  the_single_most_important 
july 2012 by jerryking
Reporters: Prick up your ears -
Thorsell, William. The Globe and Mail [Toronto, Ont] 01 Dec 2003: .13.

The 35th anniversary of CBC Radio's As It Happens is an exception, because AIH retains so much of its vigour despite the passage of time, the pestilence of fads and the pomposity of managers who come and go. Its durability tells us something about good journalism.

Journalism students often ask what the single most important quality of a good journalist is. The best answer is "curiosity," which may kill cats but supports almost every virtue that a good journalist possesses. If a journalist doesn't learn something in the course of doing his or her job, neither do you. And if you don't learn something, journalism is failing you, and you will tune it out before long.

The people on As It Happens have sustained this capacity. They do their homework on the issues, and in conducting interviews, they follow the conversation, elicit new information and learn.

Barbara Frum once said that the most important tool of a good interviewer is listening, because it is often what your subject says in answering that provokes the next and most revealing question. ...Mary Lou Finlay's curiosity remains keen six years into hosting As It Happens , and 28 years after joining CBC Toronto itself. You can hear her listening and following up on the content of interviews as she goes. You can hear her learning -- being surprised -- which offers the listener the rewards of the chase and a share in the gift of the new. But there's more.

The classic definition of journalism in most newsrooms is "what went wrong yesterday," with some attention given to "what might go wrong tomorrow." Both of these negative paradigms are relevant, AIH understands that good journalism requires application to other paradigms as well: "what went right yesterday" and "what might go right tomorrow." ...Curiosity is a defining characteristic of the young (as certainty is of the old). Journalism struggles to stay young.
reporters  journalists  ProQuest  William_Thorsell  journalism  listening  surprises  curiosity  thinking_tragically  the_single_most_important 
october 2011 by jerryking
Terror is nasty, but what about that flu pandemic? -
12 July 2005 | Globe and Mail pg .13. | by Jeffrey Simpson.That's the thing about flu. It can travel fast, and it can be virulent. By the time a vaccine is produced, many people in infected areas can die.

SARS showed how fast diseases can travel. Once SARS appeared in China, people in five countries were infected within 24 hours, and in 30 countries within several months; 43 people died in Canada. The Canadian Tourism Commission estimated that SARS cost the economy $419-million. The cost to Ontario's health-care system exceeded $700-million.

The U.S. National Intelligence Council, looking ahead to 2020, says a global pandemic is the single most important threat to the global economy. The growing literature about the likelihood of a pandemic, probably a flu one, is filled with quasi-apocalyptic material: millions dead, billions of dollars of commerce disrupted, serious security risks.

Michael Osterholm, a U.S. public-health expert, writes: "A pandemic is coming. It could be caused by H5N1 or by another novel [flu] strain. It could happen tonight, next year, or even 10 years from now." The number of poultry and wildlife that carry the strain(s) has exploded. Should these deadly strains get into the human food chain, watch out.
pandemics  ProQuest  Jeffrey_Simpson  threats  H1N1  SARS  vaccines  WHO  flu_outbreaks  food_chains  virulence  global_economy  security_&_intelligence  the_single_most_important 
october 2011 by jerryking
U of T contributes to New York's push for academic excellence
john lorinc
From Friday's Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011

The University of Toronto has joined a team of international schools to make a bid to build a $450-million urban sciences campus in Brooklyn, N.Y.

The deal includes a promise of city-owned land and $100-million in seed capital. It is part of an ambitious plan by New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg to develop a world-class engineering and research commercialization facility. ...Mr. Bloomberg, with his trademark alacrity, wants shovels in the ground by 2013, when he leaves office. “The sense of urgency comes directly form the mayor,” said Seth Pinsky, president of New York’s economic development agency. “We have a limited window of opportunity.”

The radical economic development scheme, considered by many to be the mayor’s legacy project, is expected to generate $6-billion in spin-off investment and create 30,000 creative-class jobs in coming decades.

Mr. Pinsky describes the strategy as “an Erie Canal moment,” a reference to a controversial 1820s decision by a state governor to build an upstate shipping channel. The investment that drove vast wealth into the port of New York....“It may be the single most transformative investment of the Bloomberg administration,” said Richard Florida, director of the Martin Prosperity Initiative at the University of Toronto. “I only wish more cities would think that way.”

With large Canadian universities stuffed to capacity and some provinces considering new campuses, New York’s experiment is a game-changing wealth-generating strategy and ups the ante for big cities like Toronto and Vancouver, said Dr. Florida. “If you see a place like New York moving in this direction, you’ve just seen your biggest competitor take a big step ahead.”
uToronto  Colleges_&_Universities  New_York_City  Michael_Bloomberg  John_Lorinc  urgency  transformational  Erie_Canal  windows_of_opportunity  Richard_Florida  upstate  game_changers  economic_development  wealth_creation  cities  creative_class  the_single_most_important  Martin_Prosperity_Institute 
october 2011 by jerryking
Excerpt: Buy-In: Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down
October 8, 2010 | BusinessWeek | In an edited excerpt from
their new book, John Kotter and Lorne Whitehead introduce a
counterintuitive approach to turning skeptics into advocates for your
new idea, plan, or proposal....The true buying-in of a new idea is about
winning over hearts and minds--it is an emotional commitment. The
single biggest challenge faced when obtaining buy-in for a good idea is
getting people's attention. Don't try to overcome attacks with tons of
data or logic. Instead, do what might seem to be the opposite. Keep
responses short and above all, RESPECTFUL. Goal is to "win" the thoughts
and feelings of the majority, not the 1 or 2 critics so watch the crowd
very carefully. Don't try to wing it, even if you know all the facts
thoroughly, even if the idea seems bulletproof, and even if you expect a
friendly audience. Preparation can significantly build confidence and
reduce anxiety.
resistance  obstacles  excerpts  HBS  persuasion  John_Kotter  howto  ideas  books  Communicating_&_Connecting  pitches  life_skills  Managing_Your_Career  attention  attention_spans  preparation  emotional_commitment  self-confidence  buy-in  counterintuitive  skeptics  the_single_most_important 
march 2011 by jerryking
Why Can't M.B.A. Students Write? - WSJ.com
MARCH 3, 2011 By DIANA MIDDLETON. Students Struggle for Words
Business Schools Put More Emphasis on Writing Amid Employer Complaints
One of the shortest writing assignments at Northeastern is one of the
most frequently bungled. For the Marketing and Customer Value class
students must write, in fewer than 150 words, a compelling email
convincing executives to implement a marketing and pricing strategy.

Students rarely get to the point, says Bruce Clark, writing coordinator
for the M.B.A. program. "The first sentence should begin with, 'The
single most important issue here is.' You'd be amazed how few students
do that," he says.
brevity  business_schools  Communicating_&_Connecting  concision  curriculum  incisiveness  linchpins  MBAs  writing  the_single_most_important 
march 2011 by jerryking
Do Believe the Hype - NYTimes.com
Nov. 2, 2010 |NYT| Tom FRIEDMAN..."the single most important
trend in the world today: globalization — the distn of cheap tools of
comm. & innovation that are wiring together the world’s citizens,
govts., biz, terrorists — is going to a whole new level."....EKO India
Fin Services' founders, Abhishek & Abhinav Sinha , began with an
insight — that low-wage migrant workers flocking to Delhi from poorer
states like Bihar had no place to put their savings & no secure way
to remit $ home to their families. India has relatively few bank
branches for a country its size, so many migrants stuff $ in their
mattresses or send $ home through traditional “hawala,” or hand-to-hand
networks...The brothers' idea: In every neighborhood there’s a
mom-and-pop kiosk selling drinks, cigs, candy & groceries. Why not
turn each one into a virtual bank? They created a s/ware prgrm allowing
a migrant in Delhi using his cellphone, & proof of identity, to
open a bank acct. registered on his cellphone txt system.
India  entrepreneurship  start_ups  Tom_Friedman  banking  mobile_phones  low-wage  globalization  flat_world  insights  text_messages  urbanization  remittances  microfinance  fin-tech  underserved  unbanked  kiosks  neighbourhoods  internal_migration  mom-and-pop  the_single_most_important 
november 2010 by jerryking
Growth's perilous seduction
Feb. 13, 2006 | National Post | by Michael Urlocker, a
management consultant and former Bay Street analyst, points out,
pursuing non-existent growth can be a killer. "To me the question, "Are
we in a growth market or are we in a bear market?" was the single most
important one I asked during the tech meltdown."

By National PostFebruary 13, 2006
growth  assumptions  BCE  bull_markets  bear_markets  questions  the_single_most_important 
february 2010 by jerryking

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