Posted by Dale Buss on May 17, 2013 06:40 PM
There can be a lot of stress associated with working at Walmart these days: Financial results aren't improving, and there are a lot of haters, such as critics of the chain's strategy for improving working conditions at factories in Bangladesh that supply Walmart garments.
Good thing that Walmart employees have a new way to engage themselves more productively in their work: "gamification." In a move that echoes what other major employers are doing, the nation's largest retailer is working with a Boston-based marketing and consulting organization to improve more of its internal processes by lending them a digital-gaming aspect. In turn, greater "employee engagement" is supposed to lead to improving the experiences of Walmart customers.
Walmart executive Kurt Templeton, director of workforce planning, and executives of Inward Strategic Consulting were presenting their findings on the effectiveness of gamification at a Conference Board gathering this week in Chicago.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 25, 2013 05:02 PM
It’s been a long time since IBM was the safe default option for any company purchasing computer hardware or software. When Virginia "Ginni" Rometty was promoted to CEO 16 months ago, her charge was to put the once-indominable business services giant back onto a smoother path in a world that has been invaded by the likes of Apple, smartphones, apps and the cloud.
There’s just one big problem, Rometty recently told IBM’s 434,000 employees in a five-minute internal video message: Them.
All employees at IBM were told by their leader to "step up" by working faster and better, so that they more proactively and productively engage customers and stop letting potential deals slip away.
“Where we haven’t transformed rapidly enough, we struggled,” Rometty said in the video published on the internal IBM website and reviewed by the Wall Street Journal. “We have to step up with that and deal with that, and that is on all levels.”Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on June 21, 2012 06:05 PM
Audi of America gets all its vehicles from Germany, so the U.S. arm's contribution to the sales success of Audi AG depends in large part on how well it markets an increasingly renowned product line. Partially in recognition of how he helped make Audi one of the hottest brands in the U.S. luxury segment, Audi of America's CMO, Scott Keogh, became its new CEO this week.
The company announced Keogh's ascension within a few weeks of the news of the sudden departure of Johan de Nysschen, Audi of America's CEO for eight years. De Nysschen left suddenly for a position of global oversight of Infiniti, the Nissan-owned luxury brand, that is looking for more sales worldwide — and has targeted Audi customers for some of them.
At the same time, Keogh has had a less-recognized role in setting Audi's product strategy for the increasingly important U.S. market.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on June 4, 2012 05:33 PM
Auto-industry observers didn't have to wait long to find out what Johan de Nysschen was going to do after announcing on Friday that he was leaving the helm of Audi of America for another job, following a stellar six years of advancing the cause of the German premium brand in the U.S. market.
Today, Nissan announced that De Nysschen will become SVP of the Infiniti luxury brand worldwide. The 52-year-old De Nysschen will assume the post on July 1st and will be based at Infiniti's new global headquarters in Hong Kong.
"We have exciting and ambitious plans for improving the Infiniti brand including introducing new models in all markets where premium customer demand exists," stated De Nysschen's new boss, Nissan EVP Andy Palmer. The choice of De Nysschen to head the Infiniti brand is a savvy move.
Nissan's luxury marque has been faring OK over the last few years and got through the supply disruptions of last year in better shape than Toyota's Lexus or Honda's Acura brands. Infiniti introduced the new JX seven-passenger SUV this year, which has gotten off to a solid start, and Inifniti sales overall in the U.S. market are about 7 percent above a year earlier.Continue reading...
social media watch
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 24, 2012 04:01 PM
IBM’s new study of 1709 global CEOs in 64 countries and 18 industries shows top executives and brand leaders are embracing openness, transparency and employee empowerment over the traditional command-and-control ethos that has defined the corporation for the last 100 years.
While just 16% of C-suite occupants surveyed actively participate in social media, adding or replacing email and phone usage, that number is projected to increase to 57% by 2017.
“As CEOs ratchet up the level of openness within their organizations, they are developing collaborative environments where employees are encouraged to speak up, exercise personal initiative, connect with fellow collaborators, and innovate,” the study concludes.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2012 04:29 PM
If you’ve ever seen Richard Branson, the founder of the Virgin Group and the fourth wealthiest citizen of the United Kingdom, in action, "shy" is not the first word you’d use to describe him.
"Cocky," "confident," "swaggering," "bold," "cheeky," "brash," "daredevil," "nuts" — these are words more often than not associated with Branson’s name and house of Virgin brands. But it hasn’t always been that way for the face (and head) of Virgin.
In fact, Branson and Virgin wouldn't be household names today if it wasn't for his tenacious mother, Eve, who took drastic measures during his childhood to push him out of his shell and into the world — literally.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 3, 2012 11:01 AM
McDonald’s is doing all right in building up a diverse employee base, as incoming CEO Don Thompson commented in January 2011 (above). But this week he told the Chicago Urban League that the company has a lot more it could be doing to keep the company’s diversity numbers going up.
"Diversity fuels innovation, and innovation fuels success," Thompson said, according to the Chicago Tribune. He also noted that the company’s work on diversity as well as inclusion "was the reason we were the No. 1 company on the Dow last year."Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 27, 2012 01:01 PM
Lululemon, the billion-dollar Canadian yoga-inspired athletic apparel brand founded by former surfer Dennis "Chip" Wilson in 1998, continues to cause a stir in retail, lifestyles and its focus on a tight community with bizarre principles.
In its earnings report last month covering its fiscal year that ended on January 29th, the company's CEO, Christine Day, announced:
"Reaching a billion dollars in revenue is clearly an important milestone that as a company we can all be very proud of. But far more important than the number itself are the beliefs, values, culture and people that achieved it. We really are so much more than our numbers; it is the everyday actions of our dedicated team that translates into an unparalleled guest experience and allows us to achieve our ultimate goal of elevating the world."
The original mission that Wilson set out for the brand, to "elevate the world from mediocrity to greatness," has morphed into "create components for people to live long, healthy, and fun lives."Continue reading...