Tag Archives: business strategies

feminine aspect

Top 3 Evolutionary Trends: Impact Of The Feminine Aspect On Business Industry

As 2013 approaches and we say goodbye to 2012, I’d like to share some of my thoughts regarding what I view as a huge transformation that is transpiring in the business world. This transformation or shift is the result of entrepreneurs, male and female, embracing their feminine aspect and bringing it into business. The feminine aspect taps into our compassion, our ability to nurture and our creativity. In 2012, certain evolutionary trends were established and will continue to shape and shift the world of tomorrow.

Here is my list of the top three evolutionary trends that show the positive effect the feminine aspect had on the business industry in 2012 and how important it will continue to be in 2013:

1. Compassion

To be able to see the true needs of a consumer, businesses need to think about the consumer compassionately. With the limitless use of instant information at our fingertips, the customer can see right through the typical “sale” and are more cautious in their role as a consumer, especially in light of the turbulent economy. Businesses recognized this and brought in compassion to solve the problem.

Businesses now care more about what the customer actually needs and care less about making the sale. Businesses and marketing gurus now ask themselves questions like: “What does the costumer need, not what do I think they need?” and “what does the individual want, not what I want them to want?” Prior to 2012, that kind of compassion didn’t exist. With that compassion comes loyalty, and with that loyalty comes an evolutionary way to make a sale.

2. Nurturance

The name of the game is no longer just in keyword research, but in building rapport over time with each customer. As always, technology has simplified the way businesses do, well, business. The trend we see in technology now is that it bridges the gap between the business aspect of self and the personal aspect. For instance, small businesses now cannot thrive without the use of certain social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Google+, etc. There is more emphasis on nurturing customer relationships because these relationships are the key to success.

3. Creativity

There is no longer a set of rigid rules to follow. Business planning and business strategies are shifting more and more into a creative process. The reason being that the brand has become more important to customers than the product itself. Any marketing guru will tell you that each demographic is different, each process is unique. Spending more time on thinking outside of the box is essential as we go into the New Year.

It is this feminine energy that is shifting the business world and consequently transforming the way we connect with one another, bringing us all closer to a more compassionate, nurturing and creative world. Let us all be aware of what feminine aspects we use in our businesses that have improved our success so we can attract more of that energy into the New Year.

Happy Holidays!

In & Out Box, Ready for Recovery - AZ Business Magazine Jan/Feb 2011

Businesses Tasked With Retaining Key Talent In Months Ahead

Anne C. Ruddy, president of WorldatWork, an Arizona-based professional association of human resources practitioners, has extensive experience leading and managing large organizations at the highest level. A talent innovator, she uses her organization and its staff of 130 as a laboratory to test new practices and transfer new ideas to its membership regarding human capital. Here, Ruddy shares a few key strategies for managing talent in this economic recovery.

What kind of impact has the recession had on work forces around the nation?
In a word, negative. Employers are painfully aware that cost-cutting measures deployed to stay afloat during the recession adversely affected workers. One of our recent studies — “The Global Talent Management and Rewards Survey by WorldatWork and Towers Watson” — confirms just how gravely the cost-cutting measures taken during the financial crisis impacted employees’ workloads, their ability to manage work-related stress and overall employee engagement. As a result, companies can expect greater difficulty in motivating employees and retaining key talent during the economic recovery.

What can organizations do to ensure a smooth post-recession recovery?

The very first thing is to identify your top performers. Who are your high-value contributors? These include not only those who drive the most revenue, but also those who play crucial roles in areas such as product development and human resources, or those who help build the employer brand and reputation. Forget the rear view mirror — you’d be smart to base decisions on future business priorities, not just recent performance. Sales employees, for example, who have generated less income than usual during the economic crisis, will continue to be highly valued given the central role business development plays in most post-recession recovery plans.

So you inventory talent and now have a list of pivotal employees. What’s next?

Show pivotal employees they matter. A-players want to know they have a future place in the company. While promotions are one way to send this message, they’re not always possible in this economy. Special assignments, involvement in high-visibility projects, skill-building opportunities, and formal or informal recognition can be equally powerful engagement and retention tools. Also, keep top performers informed about evolving business strategies. Too often, top performers join competitors simply because inadequate communication has left them feeling unappreciated, uncertain about their roles or uninformed about changing business needs.

Many employers were forced to freeze or cut pay during the financial crisis. What should they do for the recovery?

Return to pre-recession pay practices as soon as possible, and differentiate based on performance. Failure to do so can result in high performers being demotivated, demoralized, or worse yet, cause them to look at other options for employment that seem to offer greater rewards for their efforts. Organizations need to make hard decisions, both in rating performance and allocating compensation dollars. If there isn’t enough cash to go around, don’t go spreading it like peanut butter!

Given current high unemployment rates, is the war for talent over?

Quite the opposite. Companies should prepare to compete for the best and the brightest. Don’t be lulled by a perceived surplus of post-recession talent. While it’s an employers’ market for some positions, demand remains high for critical skills. Impending baby-boomer retirements and projected shortages in critical technical disciplines will only intensify the competition. To get ahead, you need to measure the talent that exists in your organization today, in order to find the talent gaps you need to fill so that the organization can get where it needs to go.

What do successful companies know that others may not?

Progressive companies, what we often refer to as “employers of choice,” know that keeping those people who are critical to success is a lot easier than going out into the market and trying to find new people, train them, mother them, and get them ready to really be productive, which usually takes a year from their date of hire.
In good times and in bad, the best companies look beyond talent management to talent innovation. They are on a perpetual quest for the best and the brightest employees, who can truly elevate the organization as opposed to passively watching the organization grow.

Arizona Business Magazine Jan/Feb 2011

IT Leaders Are Taking On A New Role As Companies Gear Up For Recovery

Who should CEOs increasingly turn to when they need to formulate modern business strategies that can generate new service revenues, cut across organizational boundaries, reduce costs, enhance productivity — and reach out to customers anywhere in order to deliver anything?

There’s a strategy Dream Team that likely exists right under CEOs’ noses. It’s a team primed to deal with what is being frequently called the emerging “freedom economy.”

Leaders in the areas of services marketing, IT and supply chain management comprise this new Dream Team, although they’re all often so busy they don’t have much time to have a meeting of the minds. But it is high time for CEOs to empower this team and engage their talents as new strategies are being formulated.

It’s pretty obvious to most product-oriented companies that services are an increasingly important revenue stream, so their services marketing leaders have to be front and center with their customer-centric focus. And it’s commonsense that agile and cost-effective supply chain leadership is a key to profitability, so new deployment and delivery issues related to goods and services should be placed in their trustworthy hands. But putting an IT leader on the dream team? Why now?

IT has been going through some major changes lately. IT leaders’ pain points already have generated calloused understandings of what it takes to deliver service (both internally and externally), leverage interorganizational relationships (some of them off-shore), reduce costs, improve the organization’s productivity and get information to where it needs to be to support company agents and customers before, during and after a product sale or a service encounter.

What most people don’t know is that the very systems and applications IT leaders are managing are undergoing significant change. Computing cycles are becoming virtualized, which means raw computation horsepower is now being outsourced. Even data is being managed and massaged in outsourced clouds. And the software itself is becoming service-oriented, meaning that applications are becoming compositions of interleaved executions — some internal to the organization and some running externally that are being out-tasked at the blink of an eye.

The new cell phone mantra — “I’ve got an app for that” — has become a rallying cry for what internal and external customers of IT capabilities expect today, and IT leaders are rapidly learning to respond. IT leaders are accustomed to managing relationships where the choice to switch, engage, disengage and negotiate are time dependent and customer-driven; i.e., they understand the emerging freedom economy.

The environment for IT leaders has changed so much that many now describe their role as serving as a “conductor.” This conjures images of a person standing on a podium waving a baton to orchestrate an ensemble of various instruments to deliver a classical masterpiece. It’s similar, but for the IT leader, the instrumentation has different levels of granularity. For example, an entire division’s IT operations might be outsourced or just one code component might be out-tasked. The conductor’s baton must be able to address broad and sweeping changes and relationships — and still be able to focus on even the smallest atom of syncopated execution. With this complexity, the IT leader role has emerged as one where partnerships are in a constant state of flux, governance processes must be correspondingly agile, and high levels of service must be maintained.

Calling on a Dream Team of leaders from services marketing, supply chain management and IT may not be all that new to many organizations that have been figuring out ways to cut costs to deal with today’s economy. But calling on the same team to help a company emerge successfully in the new market climate characterized by the freedom economy will be a long term make-or-break fact of organizational life.

Consider that latest app you just downloaded to your iPhone or Droid; you’re defining its context for value based on when you want it and where you are using it. You expect an excellent service encounter that will put a smile on your face when your app does its thing, and you expect the freedom to deal with a provider that in reality may be a complex chain of organizational collaborations. And another thing; You expect the execution of that app to be conducted in such a manner that the response is instantaneous, while the intricacies are hidden so you can delight in what the service does for you right now.

Underneath the marketing and chain management that is required to bring you that delight, there’s an IT conductor who has orchestrated the capability to jam out the behind-the-scenes core. That leader is sort of like the unsung hero of the Dream Team, but it’s an essential role that must be revered in order to engage in the harsh realities of the freedom economy.


Arizona Business Magazine

February 2010