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The Journey Toward Big Data

Since the 1990’s companies have been seeking to bring together internal and external data sources in order to gain a unique competitive insight other competitors did not have. The main problem was finding these customer insights due to a lack of available external data sources to match against internal data sources.

Successfully entering the consumer market in China is the dream of every company in the consumer sector. Whether you are in vehicles, food and drink, electronics, fast food or any other business selling to individuals, the thought of 1.6 billion consumers all readily approachable within one country is mouth-watering. But of course, nothing in business (or in life itself!) is straightforward; China is unlike any other market in the world.

Patrick Lencioni wrote the book, Death by Meeting, over a decade ago; and despite many more articles and books about how to improve team interaction, too many meetings continue to be boring and unproductive.

Have you ever sat through an hour-long meeting and thought halfway through that it feels like you have already been there for an hour and a half?  If not, you can stop reading. If you are still reading, that is no surprise. Sadly, I think most meetings feel like they go on and on and oftentimes not much, if anything is accomplished.

Why do so many people fear change? We’re often influenced by our fears and anxieties when we are faced with decisions; but by giving into these, we inhibit our innovative and development capacity. Once you’re aware of this as an individual, and you realize that you have the ability to remove any emotions related to change—that’s the moment. This powerful moment knocks the walls down and builds a new step forward towards success. This allows you to navigate through change so that it works for rather than against you.

The last few years have seen increased Japanese investment in South-East Asia and India, spurred on in part by turbulent domestic economic conditions in Japan and ongoing geopolitical tension with China. The impact is being felt in boardrooms across the region.

Edward Lorenz coined the term the butterfly effect to refer to how small changes in weather patterns can lead to more significant changes over time. When Chinese/Japanese relations deteriorated in the wake of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands dispute, few could predict that it would lead to a surge in growth in South-East Asia, but the effect is clear. So strong is the connection, you could call it the Japan effect

There’s a buzz around Witt/Kieffer, a feel-good factor that keeps getting better. In the last three-years they have grown revenue by 54%, filled more than 94% of their searches and watched their quality scores keep rising. What’s more impressive is that they’ve delivered these results without aggressive expansion, new sector coverage or audacious international growth. Charles W.B. Wardell, III (Chuck to anyone who knows him), who joined Witt/Kieffer in 2011 as President and CEO, explains: “When I submitted my business plan to the board it was about doing more for our existing clients. Over the last three years we’ve had the same customers with the same executives. I didn’t buy anything and didn’t go out and hire any ‘rainmakers’.”

With the rise of social media and easy publishing tools, 2015 is going to be the year of self-promotion through thought leadership. What does this mean for your career management strategy? It means that candidates who are looking to stand out will need to go beyond their personal brand to demonstrate their specific industry or functional area expertise.

This post will highlight the emerging trends you can join in on next year to showcase your thought leadership expertise out to your intended audience (executive recruiters and hiring managers). These include writing effective content, keyword optimization, publishing your content and tools to help expand your network.

My previous post discussed the C-suite Relationship Map, which I have based on the CFO Relationship Map I use in my executive coaching with Chief Financial Officers.  I have been working with this relationship map for the past few years.

Have you ever been a part of a company’s failed attempt to boost quality, merge with another company, restructure the business or improve company culture? Chances are that as an executive leader, you have experienced this. As one of the many aspects of leadership, implementing a successful change management strategy is a vital part of any successful leadership team strategy.