quarta-feira, maio 23, 2018

Acerca do contexto

Olhar para este mapa:
É difícil perceber o racional por trás do título... adiante.

 Lembra-se do fragilismo?
"Que países considera serem os mais arriscados?
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Com base nas métricas que monitorizamos, neste momento estamos particularmente preocupados com economias com elevada dependência de financiamento externo. Esta é uma das razões para o severamente mau desempenho da Turquia, particularmente no lado da moeda." (fonte)
Relacionar com "Défice comercial duplica no primeiro trimestre de 2018" e com as mudanças no perfil das exportações e no perfil do emprego.



A invasão das sapatilhas

Hoje em dia é muito comum ouvir empresários do calçado queixarem-se da invasão das sapatilhas e de como elas estão a dar cabo do seu negócio.

Há dias ouvia alguém do retalho dizer que, para rapazes, só conseguia vender sapatilhas, a menos que estivesse por perto a altura das comunhões ou o Natal.

Pois parece que a coisa vai continuar por mais algum tempo e até reforçar-se, "Sneaker sales are growing as sales of high heels tumble":
"As American fashion has slowly become more casual, so has footwear. That trend has become especially apparent in women's sneaker sales, which have surged 37 percent throughout the U.S. in 2017. Meanwhile, sales of high heels have declined 11 percent during the same time period, according to the NPD Group's Retail Tracking Service.
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"It's becoming kind of a basic consumer need to have comfort and the desire to be comfort because everybody's so busy and running around all the time," Beth Goldstein, NPD's executive director and industry analyst for fashion footwear and accessories, told CNBC.
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"Brands that are focusing on comfort are doing better, because that something that women of all ages want," she said. The sneaker trend will likely continue in the double digits for the next few years, Goldstein added, as it becomes more of a lifestyle choice."

terça-feira, maio 22, 2018

Não me admiro!

Quando existiam dinossauros no planeta Terra eu associava a marca Marks & Spencer a tudo menos low-cost. Trabalhava num fornecedor português da marca e associava-a a exigência na qualidade.

Hoje, os fornecedores portugueses da marca queixam-se da exigência paranóica no preço (custo).

Tendo em conta esta evolução:

E a importância do alinhamento entre estratégia, posicionamento da marca e operações, não me admiro com esta evolução "Marks & Spencer confirms expanded store closure programme".

Estratégia a sério implica sacrifício, implica trade-off, não é compatível com ser rico e ter saúde em simultâneo:
"there are no real surprises in Mr Rowe’s new strategy, which includes focusing on the quality and fit of clothing, “sharper” ranges, lower prices but less promotional activity." (fonte)

Estratégias possíveis

Um artigo longo, mas muito interessante, "Your Change Needs a Strategy".
5 tipos de estratégias possíveis em função da situação da organização:

  • ‘Planned itinerary’
  • ‘River crossing’ ("in certain contexts, we are unable to gain clarity on the means of change. In this case the appropriate change strategy is one we call ‘river crossing’. The end state is clear, but we need an exploratory approach to the path, taking one step at a time while keeping an eye on our destination.")
  • ‘Hill climbing’
  • 'Scouting and wandering’("There a strategy for change, odd as it may seem, which is organized around neither a clear end state nor clear means. This change is not driven by any immediate moves which seem obviously good, nor by any target state, but by curiosity, of a kind that will be useful in the long run.")
  • ‘Escape the swamp’ ("Like ‘search and wandering’, this is not driven by a particular means, and the only clear aspect of the target state is that it must incorporate substantial and urgent change. We can call this ‘escape the swamp’. It applies in pressured situations such as the early stages of a turnaround, where there is limited time or resources to identify specific ends or means, but we are nevertheless driven to change.")


Interessante as possibilidades: ‘River crossing’, 'Scouting and wandering’ e ‘Escape the swamp’.






segunda-feira, maio 21, 2018

"imposto revolucionário"

Este texto "Now on Offer at the Supermarket: Freshly Squeezed Suppliers" fez-me pensar num e-mail   que me re-encaminharam recentemente.

Trabalhar para clientes grandes é estar sujeito a "imposto revolucionário".

"O que passa-se?" (parte III)

Parte I e parte II.

Começa a ser interessante este aumento na frequência de artigos sobre a produção em Mongo e como se afastam do mainstream. Mais um, "Only Digital Manufacturing Can Create The Smart, Customized, On-Demand Products Consumers Want":
"Ask someone to describe manufacturing today, and they’ll probably describe giant machines operating in tandem along an assembly line putting together a product in vast quantities.
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But as someone who works in manufacturing today, I can tell you that mass production – which has dominated how we’ve made things since the Industrial Revolution – is no longer the predominant manufacturing model.
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Consumers today want products that are smarter, more customized and available on demand. The only way companies can satisfy this need is by creating a new business model that applies digital manufacturing strategies. Digital manufacturing – which combines software with physical manufacturing – can help manufacturers iterate faster, customize more, reduce lead times and respond more quickly to market changes."
Qual a direção de Mongo?
"Shorter Product Life Cycles: We may not always need the latest and greatest technologies, but we want them.
...
Greater Customization: Creating customized products is neither efficient nor cost effective with current mass production strategies.
...
Consumers want products that are smarter, more customized and available on demand. But consumer product, manufacturing companies and supply chain partners simply can’t meet this demand using the same business model we’ve used for decades. Instead, we need to understand and apply digital manufacturing strategies and embrace new tools that streamline operations."

domingo, maio 20, 2018

Melhorar

De "Google Has an Official Process in Place for Learning From Failure--and It's Absolutely Brilliant":
"1. Identify the most important problems.
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"A postmortem is the process our team undertakes to reflect on the learnings from our most significant undesirable events,"
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2. Create a record.
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"Our next step is to work together to create a written record for what happened, why, its impact, how the issue was mitigated or resolved, and what we'll do to prevent the incident from recurring,"
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3. Promote growth. Not blame.
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"Removing blame from a postmortem can enable team members to feel greater psychological safety to escalate issues without fear,"
...
The key is to encourage your people not to play "the blame game." Rather, you want them to focus on improvement and learning.
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Remember, everyone makes mistakes. The question is, not "what if," but instead, what did we learn?"
E de "Toyota’s Secret: The A3 Report":

Aceleração

"Being on trend no longer guarantees sales and profitability in the fashion sector. In minutes, consumers can spot, own, and share a trend on social media, from any corner of the globe. As a result, hits can sell out rapidly, while misses do not move, even with heavy discounting.
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The traditional product-development model is too slow. How do fashion brands outpace competitors? When we looked at differences between top and bottom performers, we found that top performers routinely use consumer insights very early in the product-design process and can have products ready for purchase in weeks, not months.
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But established brands have great difficulty doing either well. This needs to change, as up-and-coming brands are breaking the rules and resetting consumer expectations. [Moi ici: Este título diz tudo "The Customer’s Time is The Only Time"]
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Top performers make speed to market a top priority and get faster and faster. Top-performing companies can deliver product to market in less than six to eight weeks. The typical lead time in the industry is more than 40 weeks—far too long to stay ahead of consumers [Moi ici: Imaginem um empresário, ou um encarregado, habituados a sonhar com um regresso ao passado, às séries grandes, a um ritmo mais lento, ao ler estas linhas...]
Trecho retirado de "The need for speed: Capturing today’s fashion consumer"

E isto também vai ter o seu impacte "What Should French Fashion Do With Its Unsold Clothing?"

BTW,
"Winners have significantly reduced time to market, but they also recognize that not every product requires a speedy supply chain. Leading fashion companies have divided their product lines into the following supply-chain segments, based on sales predictability:
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Long cycle for basics. Long lead times of six months or more are acceptable for basics and never-out-of-stock items. Optimized sourcing gets the best value for money on these products.
Shorter cycle for the core seasonal collection. Retailers can use advanced visual-recognition tools to identify styles and colors trending on social-media sites.
Express cycle for new in-season products. An even shorter cycle of three to six weeks from design to delivery allows brands to inject novelty or innovation within a single season.
Read-and-react model for new and untested products. Close monitoring of these items during the season (for example, for trending prints and colors) ensures fast replenishment of top sellers and easier cancellation of slow movers.
Test model for the riskiest products. Launching virtual or small test batches of a sharply trending item provides insight into the consumer response before committing fully to a product."

sábado, maio 19, 2018

"There has to be enough energy for them to stop something and start something"

"Des: If you’re a startup founder, what’s a single step you can take with Jobs?
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Bob: The greatest single step you can make is to actually talk to somebody who recently purchased you, and talk to somebody who recently quit you – or quit the competitor that you’re going after. By understanding these switching moments, you’re pulling a thread. And then once you’ve seen it, you can’t unsee it; you’ll see it over and over again.
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The first step is always a set of interviews. I’m not talking about surveys. Literally get them on the phone and ask the basic question: why was today the day they signed up for this product? The thing you have to realize is that it’s not random, and you have to dig as hard as you can past the bullshit stuff they’ll tell you upfront. There’s always something deeper, because nobody really wants to switch. Habit is the strongest force of all, and people will just keep doing what they’re doing unless something gets in the way or something better comes a long. There has to be enough energy for them to stop something and start something.
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Just go talk to your customers. That’s where this all began."

Trecho retirado de "Bob Moesta on unpacking customer motivations with Jobs-to-be-Done"

"The only reliable way to gather this evidence is by exploring what customers did in the past or will do in the present. Asking them what they’ll do in the future, e.g. “Will you use…”, puts you in the land of biases and should be avoided."

Trecho retirado de "Find Better Problems Worth Solving with the Customer Forces Canvas"

"I only care about what was going on in their life"

"Someone might tell you: “I went to give a report, and all of a sudden my bosses went crazy because it wasn’t the right data, and they made me look bad. So I have to find something better.” It’s usually the things they blame themselves for. They don’t say it’s about the product; it’s a separation between their experiences and product. You have to dig deeper than that: it’s really about seeing how products fit into people’s lives.
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Trying to look at your customer through your product is like looking through a peephole in a fence. You can only see the little interactions they have, as opposed to getting above it all, looking at their life, and seeing how you actually fit in. That’s where the interview takes a turn, because most people always think you’re going to talk about the product. Instead, you’re talking about them.
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When a lot of companies first start using JTBD they think, “I need you to ask about this feature and that feature.” I don’t care about any of those things. I only care about what was going on in their life that made them say, “Today’s the day.” Those are the pylons and the foundations by which people do things. They don’t think it’s part of your world as a product person, but they are the actual foundations by which you get pulled into their world."
Trecho retirado de "Bob Moesta on unpacking customer motivations with Jobs-to-be-Done"

sexta-feira, maio 18, 2018

Quando as galinhas tiverem dentes... (parte ??)


Esta série começou há quase 10 anos, Setembro de 2008, quando estranhei um défice comercial japonês. Depois, o estranho entranha-se, de Agosto de 2012, para culminar em Janeiro de 2014 num novo normal.

Em Abril de 2013 apanhei o primeiro défice comercial chinês. Em Março do ano passado o @nticomuna pôs o tema no meu radar.

Agora, "China’s vanished current-account surplus will change the world economy":




Arte, sempre a arte

Desde 2011 que defendo aqui que o futuro das PME passa pela arte:

Entretanto, esta semana descobri o livro "Thinking The Art of Management - Stepping into 'Heidegger's Shoes" de David Atkinson. Nele, descobri um artigo de 1987, "Portrait of the Manager as an Artist" de Vincent Degot:
"A long tradition (in terms of the history of industrial capitalism) tells us that business management is to be considered as a proper subject for "scientific" study. One of the reasons supporting this is that management is based on a rationalistic attitude of mind: to achieve optimum use of resources with a view to maximisation of corporate profits. However, a much older tradition teaches us that it would be unwise, from the scientific and rationalistic standpoints, to assume that the business manager is motivated solely, or even essentially, by the goal of maximum profit. To illustrate and define the ideas we shall be developing in the main body of this paper, let us first take a brief look at a rather different field, often known as the "history of art criticism"...To come back to our starting point, it is clear that, while management can benefit from general techniques, applicable in companies of all kinds and themselves reflecting some changes in fashion, it must make allowance for the conditions prevailing within each particular company. This can be done only through experience, given that classroom tuition cannot cover the whole gamut of combinations of factors which have to be handled in practice. This means that a manager may perform brilliantly in one context but poorly in another (in the same way as some painters are at their best with portraits, others with landscapes, and so on). Consequently, one of the talents of the true manager lies in his ability to discover the working environment best suited to his particular gifts."

E ainda:
"In the first place, it might be said that the work has a more overall dimension that the decision: a decision may form part of a work (just as an iconographic motif may be an integral part of a painting). In that case, we must allow that the decisions are not necessarily of the "hard" type (i.e. based on strict economics), but may be of the "soft" variety we have discussed elsewhere. The work comprises perception of the need for something to be done at some point, evaluation of the right decision needed and, finally, implementation of that decision in practical form. There are of course many decision-theories which make due allowance for these three phases, but what we are more, particularly concerned with here is the extent to which each phase leaves room for personal initiative;
...
The creative work commences when its author starts to realise, on the basis of random information - chatting in the corridor, a glimpse of a computer print-out, a report by a consultant, something said at a staff meeting, etc -, that a specific action of some kind will be called for in due course. The creative manager -displaying one of his characteristics to which we come back later - feels that possibility in the form of an impulse, a violent desire for action. He then has to convey to other people all or part of his initial "intuition" - assuming, of course, that others will have to be involved. To this end, he may have to adapt his project to suit the corporate culture context, and relevant external trends (fashions) which could help to support it. In practice, this process is not so clear-nut and deliberate as thus expressed. Owing to this adaptation, the project may fit in with a prevailing "style" or reflect a local "taste" (cultural segment). One way in which he displays his personal talent is his skilful use of the factors in presence when mobilising his entourage to mete the project feasible. He may, for example, be led to formulate it in rationalistic terms as a means of demonstrating its advantages for the corporation, and this reformulation process may affect his original intention. In the same way, there have been times when external factors (patrons, critics) have affected the composition or the subject of a painting."






quinta-feira, maio 17, 2018

Um mundo polarizado (parte VII)

Um mundo polarizado (parte VI).

Na parte II coloquei estes gráficos:


"Cuando se habla del Apocalipsis Retail como una pandemia generalista, no es real. La venta por catálogo ofrecida por retailers como Sears también fue un gran destructor de tiendas físicas. Es absurdo porque en el escenario omnicanal no tiene sentido carecer de tiendas físicas. Alibaba invertirá más de quince mil millones de dólares en empresas de retail físico en los próximos años. Hace poco, el grupo abrió la primera librería en Shanghái sin personal humano. Hay ciertos modelos con retail físico cuyo momento actual no es bueno, sino excelente: los actores premium, el low cost y ciertos retailers de valor medio."


Saliento:
"P.: El Cortes Inglés y Macy’s están subalquilando espacios a terceros en sus centros. ¿Es una buena solución ante el exceso de metros?
R.: Macy’s está convirtiendo todas las plantas bajas de sus centros en puro concepto off-price. Aunque se le conocía siempre como lo más exquisito de la atención al cliente, y ahora los descuentos le están yendo bien, este es el peor negocio que puedes hacer. Porque estás perdiendo el ADN. Yo preferiría alquilar parte de mi terreno a alguien que tiene buena reputación de marcas antes que poner un rastrillo en el seno de mis establecimientos. Los grupos de grandes almacenes también tendrían que empezar a pensar en otros negocios, como pueden ser clínicas de belleza, médicas, escuelas de negocios… ese tipo de formatos que jamás hubiesen entrado en un gran almacén a lo mejor tienen que entrar."
e:
"P.: ¿Qué innovación tecnológica cree que le urge más implantar a un retailer físico de moda?
R.: A largo plazo, visualizo establecimientos con un 50% de retail y un 50% de comunidad, con el sentimiento de plaza del pueblo de una tienda Apple. Lo más efectivo es la realidad aumentada. "

Pensar o futuro

Sem conotações partidárias, recordar:
Muitas vezes penso na evolução divergente entre o estado, cada vez mais volumoso, cada vez com mais funcionários, e as empresas privadas, cada vez mais lean.

Depois, recordar que Portugal é um dos países mais idosos da Europa, neste postal de 2015:
Comparar Suécia e Portugal.

"Sweden’s got a major supply and demand problem.
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By 2025, its entire workforce is expected to grow by 207,000 people—yet it needs more than that number just to staff its fabled welfare state. The worker shortfall could crimp services and raise labor costs, especially in a political environment less hospitable to immigration.
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The mismatch is one of the biggest headaches facing Sweden’s next government."
Faz-me impressão que com tanto computador, tanto simplex, não seja possível fazer reengenharia em tantos e tantos sectores do estado.


quarta-feira, maio 16, 2018

"most large organizations can’t and don’t change as fast "

Arrisco enveredar por uma linguagem que não aprecio para dizer que só em Portugal é que se acha que as empresas grandes são eternas, talvez por causa da protecção do estado, talvez por causa do nosso crony-capitalism militante. Ainda há dias, "Empresas. Quando ser grande não impede a queda ou a falência".
"why should great companies falter? This is perhaps one of the greatest surprises in business, for if any organizations should succeed and endure, why shouldn’t it be the ones with the most resources and the largest customer bases, not to mention most cash and the broadest global reach? The answer is that they may not be the ones with the best ideas!
Somehow in the process of becoming successful, large, and global, the policies, practices, and habits that worked so well in stable conditions, and which were quite necessary for largeness, also rendered these organizations non-adaptive. Confronted with rapid change, they are not organized to respond adequately; again and again we have seen companies grow huge and then struggle to sustain their market position because their very hugeness inhibits their ability to adapt.
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When markets change and new ideas take hold, as they inevitably do, most large organizations can’t and don’t change as fast. Instead, newer, more nimble competitors capture market share by innovating where the entrenched giants cannot. Well, actually it may not be true to say that they cannot. But for whatever reason, and although they certainly could, they usually do not.
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The most compelling is that there’s a gap between the reality of accelerating change and our understanding of what’s really happening. Simply put, too many leaders have a flawed mental picture of the market because they don’t grasp the magnitude and impact of change, and they underestimate its importance to their own organizations. They manage as though markets were stable when they’re anything but; they create slow, hierarchical organizations that concentrate power, emphasize standardization, and seek conformity, when innovation and creativity would serve them - and their shareholders - far better. And these errors are compounded by an analytical thinking style that promotes fragmentation, and causes them to lose sight of the big picture."
Trechos retirados de "Permanent Innovation" de Langdon Harris.

Partes interessadas e a micro-economia

Dois exemplos do dia a dia de aplicação do conceito de ecossistema de partes interessadas.
"Já se assiste a pequenas revoluções setoriais, como no das pedras ornamentais, em que há já uma integração e colaboração entre os vários intervenientes: por exemplo, entre a empresa que explora, o arquiteto e o aplicador que já definem em três dimensões o que desejam para o trabalho final."(1)
"Para comemorar os 10 anos de vida da empresa e os seus 50 anos de idade, Marcelo Alves Inácio vai dar uma festa na fábrica, em Monção, nos dias 13 e 14 de Setembro, para 150 pessoas, tendo já assegurada a presença de "30 pessoas de 22 nacionalidades diferentes, desde revendedores, arquitectos, decoradores..."" (2)

(1) - Mais de 42 milhões em projetos de I&D
(2) - Marcelo “chega fogo” em Monção para ser líder mundial de lareiras de luxo

terça-feira, maio 15, 2018

Associar coisas a experiências

Acerca da economia das experiências recordar, por exemplo:

Mais um tijolo para esta construção, "Why You Should Spend Your Money On Experiences, Not Things":
"Experiences become a part of our identity. We are not our possessions, but we are the accumulation of everything we’ve seen, the things we’ve done, and the places we’ve been. Buying an Apple Watch isn’t going to change who you are; taking a break from work to hike the Appalachian Trail from start to finish most certainly will.
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Our experiences are a bigger part of ourselves than our material goods,” said Gilovich. “You can really like your material stuff. You can even think that part of your identity is connected to those things, but nonetheless they remain separate from you. In contrast, your experiences really are part of you. We are the sum total of our experiences.”
...
Anticipation matters. Gilovich also studied anticipation and found that anticipation of an experience causes excitement and enjoyment, while anticipation of obtaining a possession causes impatience.
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she attributes the temporary happiness achieved by buying things to what she calls “puddles of pleasure.” In other words, that kind of happiness evaporates quickly and leaves us wanting more. Things may last longer than experiences, but the memories that linger are what matter most."
Para os fabricantes de coisas, talvez faça sentido associar coisas a experiências, como um souvenir. Até que ponto alguém nas PME está a trabalhar nisto?

Bricolage

"The absence of substantial resource endowments restricts the ability of most new firms to innovate. The majority of new firms therefore never create any discernible innovative outcomes during what are often rather short-lived and mundane struggles to create value.
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Yet, against these considerable odds, substantial subsets of new firms do manage to innovate. Remarkably little theory or research identifies or explains the patterns of behavior that differentiate new firms that manage to innovate from those that remain largely imitative. ... we know very little about the patterns of behavior that permit some resource-constrained firms to innovate while so many other similarly situated firms languish. In this paper, we draw on recent studies of entrepreneurial “bricolage” to develop and test theory that suggests that by engaging in bricolage, new firms may thereby improve their innovativeness.
...
First, “making do” implies “a bias toward action and active engagement with problems or opportunities rather than lingering over questions of whether a workable outcome can be created from what is at hand.” In a related manner, it implies “a refusal to enact resource limitations,” which means that firms engaged in bricolage are willing to experiment and tinker and try to find ways to accomplish goals without worrying too much about whether they have the “right” tools, resources, or skills at hand. [Moi ici: Fuçar em vez das tiradas da tríade] Whereas resource constraints might cause many other firms to refrain from attempting new activities, firms engaged in bricolage persist in trying to find ways of addressing new challenges. Second, bricolage relies on “the resources at hand,” which includes both the firm’s internal resources and external resources available cheaply or for free. Firms engaged in bricolage frequently find value in inputs that other firms view as worthless, which can be particularly useful when operating under substantial resource constraints.
...
firms engaging in bricolage will tend to create more innovative solutions than firms that do not use bricolage: bias for action, and recombination. First, the baseline expectation in prior theory in entrepreneurship is that many resource-constrained firms behave as if innovativeness requires slack resources. That is, they simply do not even attempt to innovate, but rather choose to do nothing when facing new opportunities and challenges for which an appropriate response would seem to require expensive new investments.  [Moi ici: Recordo Taleb e a frase, "stressors are information" ou "pain is information". Sem dor não há energia de activação para que a empresa passe a um nível superior. Mais uma razão para criticar o activismo dos governos de turno que impedem que as empresas se reinventem] In contrast, firms engaging in bricolage demonstrate a bias for action through a drive to overcome obstacles and a willingness to find ways to make do with the resources at hand. They are willing to treat as resources what other organizations might see as worth- less. This may include material, ideational, or human inputs.A second characteristic of bricolage promoting innovativeness is the recombination of existing elements."

Trechos retirados de "Bricolage as a Path to Innovativeness for Resource-Constrained New Firms", de Julienne Senyard, Ted Baker, Paul Steffens, e Per Davidsson, publicado por J PROD INNOV MANAG 2014;31(2):211–230.

segunda-feira, maio 14, 2018

"O que passa-se?" (parte II)

Parte I.

O artigo continua com um exemplo já conhecido aqui do blogue, a Local Motors (postal de 2012, outro de 2016 e outro de 2017).
"A small U.S. startup called Local Motors offers an intriguing glimpse into the future of manufacturing. The company manages five so-called microfactories around the world, which primarily use 3D-printing equipment to produce such modern-day curios as Olli, a self-driving shuttle bus with IBM Watson artificial intelligence that can be hailed via a smartphone app and follows voice instructions; a cargo-carrying drone for Airbus dubbed the Zelator; and the world’s first 3D-printed car, the Strati — road-worthy if not a speedster — built live in 44 hours at the International Manufacturing Technology Show.
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But the 3D-printing aspect of Local Motors’ business model is just a small part of what makes this company worth examining. The company is also crowdsourcing production designs from a network of global participants,
...
As the microfactory concept evolves, Local Motors will build new plants wherever its customers are located, and each manufactured item will effectively be one of a kind, built to suit the tastes and requirements of individual consumers. Scale is replaced by potential savings from engineering, design, parts, labor, and efficiency in a 3D microfactory. Local Motors describes this approach as making money from scope. In other words, it offers useful, attractive, bespoke products to customers who are within shouting distance of its factories, at a price that matches the distinctive value of the item.
Local Motors is still a nascent business — and may or may not ultimately succeed — but at its core it reflects a vital shift in production dogma that manufacturers of all sizes will have to reckon with in the coming years. After decades of chasing lower production costs and scale by extending factory footprints and supply chains deeper into emerging nations and distributing products around the world in huge quantities over complex logistics networks, manufacturers are finding that their globalized approach is losing its viability. In particular, their centralized management structure, lengthy supply chains, lack of product variety, and long shipping times are impeding regional agility — and, in some cases, placing them at a disadvantage to local competition.
Instead, the new strategic archetype for successful manufacturers will be based on a relatively simple idea: The most efficient manufacturing setup is the one that makes goods in appropriate volumes to meet demand at the point of demand, with plenty of room for local and individual customization. Much of this concept will be driven by advances in technology — 3D printing, factory innovations, e-commerce, data analytics, and the Internet of Things, to name a few
...
Moreover, the impact of the point-of-demand model will not be limited to the business-to- consumer environment. Suppliers in the business-to-business realm will also be under pressure to improve responsiveness as part of the campaign by their customers — that is, manufacturers — to shorten the value chain and more proactively serve the end consumer.
The implications are problematic for some companies: Manufacturers that are today highly invested in a global factory network of multiple large centralized plants, managed by traditional operating systems, organizations, and processes, may find their business models becoming obsolete faster than they ever expected. [Moi ici: Recordar esta reflexão de 2014] However, the nimblest manufacturers stand to reap significant gains from this new model. As their supply systems become more responsive and as customer demand becomes less of a guessing game, inventory inefficiencies and the carrying costs of warehousing products in bulk — only to ultimately jettison some of them as dead stock — will decline. In addition, savings will be generated by the reduction in expensive long-range production planning and supply chain management. And for companies able to outpace rivals in producing products that are best suited to customer needs — making these items available when customers want them — sales margins should rise markedly."
Conseguem imaginar como isto vai mudar o paradigma económico? Conseguem visualizar o fim do mundo criado pelo século XX?

A evolução para a economia de influenciadores

Mais um exemplo a juntar ao rol que este blogue vem acumulando desde Março de 2007, para suportar a importância de trabalhar o ecossistema.
"Brands now shower Instagram stars with merchandise and feature a select few in their own marketing campaigns. Guerra said Target has an in-house marketing team devoted to scouting and recruiting influencers for campaigns.
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The ecosystem is still expanding, extending beyond the biggest names, with even “micro-influencers” targeted by brands for their often devoted followings. That term has a flexible definition; Bryanboy said his more-than 600,000 Instagram followers made him a micro-influencer compared to celebrities with millions of fans.
...
“Early on for brands, it was about … how we translate our influence into sales,” Mason said. “Now when I’m working with brands, it’s not to sell products… It’s to change their way of approaching a customer or product.
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In other words, influencers are no longer just peddling products directly from brands to their followers. They’re creating campaigns around a brand for a company and even creating their own brands, as Mason did.
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What matters, ultimately, is the credibility of the relationship between the brand or product and the influencer. The extent of his personal experience with brand partners, he said, “goes on from posting a picture on Instagram of me holding a bag to me creating a video of events around the world that they send me to.”
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“All of this creates an image of me integrating with these brands on a 360 level,” he said.
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Beyond creating content for brands, another driving force of the influencer economy is the consumer’s hunger for representation."
Trechos retirados de "The Evolution of the Influencer Economy"

domingo, maio 13, 2018

"O que passa-se?"

Normalmente aqui no blogue, chamo a atenção para a cegueira das empresas de consultoria grandes, parece que escondem dos seus clientes grandes o impacte de Mongo na sua actividade.

Julgo que é a primeira vez que encontro um texto de uma consultora grande sobre Mongo e as suas implicações na economia, nos ecossistemas e na dimensão das empresas.
"In the next manufacturing revolution, spurred on by technologies that reinvent the way a factory can create products, such as 3D printing and robotics, companies will also need to rethink what they make and where they make it. Products will come off the assembly line in small, highly customized batches, like a high-tech version of old-fashioned craftsmanship. [Moi ici: Digam lá se isto não é uma entrada à matador com Mongo em toda a linha!!! Desde os pequenos lotes até aos artesãos tecnológicos longe das máquinas-monumento tão queridas dos que pensam que o Normalistão do século XX automatizado será o paradigma produtivo do século XXI]
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The revolution is on its way, and within the next five to 10 years, manufacturers in all industries will find themselves in a race to efficiently produce products at the point of demand — that is, where their customers are — and to deliver these items when their customers want them, personalized to their customers’ individual tastes. They will have to make strategic choices to stay competitive, investing in technology that allows them to continually analyze data about their customers’ preferences and buying habits so they can adapt quickly to changes in market conditions. Factories will be smaller, [Moi ici: Imaginem os cromos da Junqueira ao ler estas blasfémias!operating with minimal lead times and shorter value chains. Management will be decentralized, the supply chain will be simplified and shortened, and the distance separating the manufacturer from its customers will be sharply reduced.
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Although technology will enable this new manufacturing model, customers will compel its adoption. In emerging markets as well as developed regions, customers increasingly expect products that match local cultural preference rather than homogeneous global brands and business-to-business services. The auto industry pioneered this localized model as long ago as the 1980s, when Japanese automakers entered the U.S. market with cars tailored to American tastes. But only recently have other industries taken up this approach — with refrigerators, toothpaste, furniture, clothing, and software that are designed for each region. The popularity of e-commerce has changed the customer experience, giving people more information about products and competitors’ products, pricing, and, through peer reviews, quality. For the first time, customers can reasonably demand from mass producers products that look and feel like they were made next door.
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Nimble manufacturers will reap significant gains from the point-ofdemand model. As their supply systems become more responsive and as local customer demand becomes less of a guessing game, inventory inefficiencies and the carrying costs of having to warehouse products in bulk will decline. The expense of supply chain management and production planning will drop as well. And companies able to produce personalized products that are best suited to customer needs when customers want them will enjoy higher sales margins. By contrast, as point-of-demand manufacturing takes hold, companies that operate global factory networks with large centralized plants, managed by traditional operating systems, organizations, and processes, may find that their business models are outmoded."
Ao chegar aqui recordei, "Pedro Nuno Santos quer Estado como motor do desenvolvimento", porque estava a nascer em mim um outro pensamento, o oposto... o que esperar de um contrarian-militante! O que seria a orientação geral de um governo para facilitar a transição para este tipo de sociedade?

Empresas pequenas, DIY, empreendedorismo verdadeiro não treta para sacar Portugal 2020, fiscalidade normanda, legislação laboral, democratização da produção.

Esta transição vai acontecer, inevitavelmente, pedida, ordenada pelos clientes, pelas tribos de Mongo. E teremos governos cada vez mais incapazes de perceber o que se passa, questionando-se, "O que passa-se?", cada vez mais crentes nas virtudes do Normalistão, num mundo que se afasta cada vez mais desse paradigma.

Trechos retirados de "Manufacturing’s new world order: The rise of the point-of-demand model"

Effectual Logic

Muitas vezes dou comigo a regressar a este postal de Outubro de 2015, "Do concreto para o abstracto e não o contrário". Pensar estratégia para PME deve ser diferente de pensar estratégia para empresas grandes. As PME têm de partir do que têm e não se podem permitir entrar em ilusões de rico, ""analisamos os meios que temos e imaginamos futuros possíveis" (parte II)".

"Causation is when actions are made based on predetermined goals and focuses on the selection between available means to achieve those goals. It begins with the identification and exploitation of opportunity in the existing market, followed by a series of tasks that include extensive market study and detailed competitive analyses to develop a business plan. In order to implement the plan, resource acquisition and interaction with different stakeholders by developing partnerships takes place.
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In contrast, effectuation focuses on choosing between possible objectives that can be created with the set of available resources (who I am, what I know, whom I know). Who I am includes these characteristics; for example traits, preferences, skills, abilities, passions, assets; what I know consists of prior knowledge including; education, training and expertise, knowledge from life, and informal learning. Lastly, who I know includes the social and professional networks. [Moi ici: Tudo isto tem a ver com a importância da idiossincrasia] Those goals are constructed and evaluated within affordable losses rather than expected returns. Effectuators then seek to co-create those goals through negotiating with various stakeholders who are willing to make actual commitments. These commitments add new resources to the pool of means to achieve new goals (markets, products, and firms). Effectual logic is focused on co-creating the future by the use of intangible resources, utilising co-creation of value and relationships. Effectual and causal logics are different in terms of having two different processes at their foundations.
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when an individual uses causal logic they begin with a given goal, decision-making is based on expected returns, execute competitive advantage and conduct comprehensive market study, exploit pre-existing knowledge and try to predict the future. Whereas individuals uses effectual logic begin with a given set of means, decision making based on affordable loss, emphasize strategic alliances and exploit contingencies, and seek to control and embrace unpredictable future.
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“Bricolage” is “making do by applying combinations of resources at hand to new problems and opportunities
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Effectuation is characterized by flexibility, experimentation and affordable loses. Those characteristics allow service innovation to take place. In causal approach, outsiders are perceived as competitors or threats, while in effectual approach, customers, suppliers, workers even competitors are perceived as potential partners who can help in crystalizing the service by adding new means or goals. [Moi ici: Os meus queridos ecossistemas] Bricoleurs involve customers, suppliers and other parties to solve a problem or launch/improve service innovation. Collaboration expands the pool of available resource and helps to broaden ones expertise."
Trechos retirados de "Causation and Effectuation in the context of Service Innovation in small, independent firms - Integration and management of resources and capabilities"

sábado, maio 12, 2018

Outro factor

Outro factor a contribuir para compras de proximidade, mais encomendas, mas mais pequenas, aumento de reposições e, eventualmente, aumento do número de épocas por ano:
"Francia avanza hacia la economía circular. En el marco de su hoja de ruta para impulsar este sistema económico, el Gobierno del país ha presentado una serie de propuestas legislativas entre las que figura la prohibición de incinerar o destruir prendas que las marcas o las tiendas no venden y la obligatoriedad de donarlas a instituciones para el reciclado o a ONGs para su reúso."
Trecho retirado de "Francia da un paso al frente en economía circular y prohíbe destruir las prendas no vendidas"

Depois, a culpa é do digital

O relatório "Experience is everything: Here’s how to get it right" é muito interessante, mas tem um problema grave, na minha opinião, trata os "clientes" como miudagem, como um fantasma estatístico.

Por exemplo:
"Price and product quality are a given—79% of U.S. consumers say they might switch from one brand they like to another for a better price, 52% for product quality. Such drivers often dictate initial choices too—and in many instances, switching brands can be hard (consider what it takes to switch banks). For many it’s not worth the hassle for small improvements."
E se uma empresa tem como clientes aqueles que não valorizam acima de tudo o preço? Lembram-se dos anos de chumbo da troika? Pois, "A realidade é muito mais complexa".
"Q: Which of the following would stop you from doing business with a company?"

sexta-feira, maio 11, 2018

Ainda a suckiness e o caring

Ontem um empresário com quem trabalho e que faz o favor de seguir este blogue enviou-me um e-mail para mim e para o resto da equipa com esta imagem:
Ainda numa reunião recente tínhamos falado no "Too Big To Care".

Hoje de manhã li e registei:
"So why not rethink your strategy and embrace the idea of building a tiny company? You might want to consider it, especially since Rowe says 'tiny' doesn't refer to size--or profit potential. Instead, it's a mindset."
Ontem naquilo que formalmente é uma acção de formação para empresários, mas que tento que seja uma conversa orientada para a reflexão e partilha de experiências falou-se disto:
"Like a tiny house where there's limited space for 'stuff,' a tiny business requires that you examine, prioritize and work with what you value and eliminate what you don't,"
Como não voltar aos nabateus e a Taleb sobre os artesãos saberem trabalhar com limites:
"the artisan is someone like me: You cannot be a promiscuous entrepreneur if you're an artisan. And also, you know where to stop. The problem is Steve Jobs stopped at the product line. The typical artisan knows where to stop.
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Whereas if you hire someone [like] McKinsey, they'll end up making you keep going beyond and doing shit. They want you to expand until you end up in bankruptcy."
Trechos retirados de "Why More Businesses Should Embrace Being Small"

Acerca da suckiness, visitar isto e isto.


Isto é uma tragédia? Não!

Recordar o perfil de 2017. Depois, olhar para o perfil do 1º trimestre de 2018:
As coisas não estão a correr bem. Há definitivamente uma deterioração da situação.

Até a metalomecânica está a exportar menos do que no ano passado. A farmacêutica e a floricultura estão com quedas importantes. No primeiro trimestre de 2017 o crescimento farmacêutico andava nos 30% agora cai 35%. O calçado crescia 9% agora cai 5%.

Isto é uma tragédia?

Não, claro que não. Estou sempre a citar Nassim Taleb aos empresários:
"Economists fail to get w/ GDP growth that anything that grows without an "S" curve (slowing down phase) blows up."
Por isso, é que é importante a gente que espalha bosta, a gente com skin-in-the-game, a gente que não confia no alinhamento improvável de planetas e foge do fragilismo.

Este ano menos bom para alguns sectores, será um ligeiro incómodo para quem se prepara nos anos bons para o que pode acontecer de menos bom, porque sempre irá haver um ano, ou dois, ou três menos bom. E são esses anos menos bons que vão ajudar a limpar o sistema dos devaneios de alguns mais exuberantes e prevenir o colapso estrutural de um sector, ou de uma economia um pouco mais à frente, quando acabam os fundos para o governo de turno que estiver a torrar dinheiro para manter um status-quo.



quinta-feira, maio 10, 2018

Sou fanático por ecossistemas!!!

"In every ecosystem, there exists a key resource necessary for the ecosystem to create value and become viable. ... A keystone species is one that has a significant impact on its community or ecosystem and is “disproportionately large relative to its abundance” … key species perform roles not performed by other species or processes. … In a service ecosystem, where business value is created, the actor is seen as a foundation resource because he/she possesses agency and can act freely and purposefully by using operant resources to act on other resources. Actors are the foundation resource in service ecosystems because they perform roles not performed by other resources or processes. It is therefore necessary to understand this driving force—the actor—to gain a deeper understanding of service ecosystems.

A service ecosystem provides the fundamental basis for actors’ resource integration and value co-creation efforts through mutual service provision. The concept of value co-creation implies that value is created through interactions with a set of resources guided by regulatory mechanisms embedded in a service ecosystem.

To understand the actor as a foundation resource in the service ecosystem, it is necessary to zoom out from dyadic relations to get the system perspective. Systems are made up of several components, the linkages between these components, and an environment. General systems theory emphasizes an open, socially constructed, dynamic system that can be theoretically decomposed into: (1) the actors (social and economic market participants); (2) linkages and networks of actors (the social and collective relations); and (3) environment or context (boundaries, social, and market conditions through institutions and institutional arrangements).
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Actors co-create value based on their individual perceptions and links to other actors through their network as well as through the embedded service ecosystems. In this complex, multifaceted environment, actors operate continually at a crossroads of different societal and individual realms.

At the center of every service ecosystem is an actor who operates on and integrates various available resources, guided by mechanisms of beliefs and norms, in order to co-create value. As part of this value co-creation effort, the actor faces various forces standing at the intersection or of this value co-creation effort, the actor faces various forces standing at the intersection or crossroads of influencing realms. We argue that this crossroads can be divided analytically into societal- and
and individual-focused realms

Embedded in the four realms, individual action realizes institutional order through schemas and mental models, expressed by day-to-day actions. These schemas and day-to-day actions occur within service ecosystems that presume an underlying set of resources to facilitate the actor’s engagement in particular practices and to support his or her corresponding position in the system. This resource integration process forms and is formed by institutions and institutional arrangements in continuous  interactions. Actors’ schemas and mental models simultaneously influence their understanding of reality; their actions confirm or challenge institutional arrangements and the positions the actors possess in the service ecosystem."


Trechos retirados de "The Actor: The Key Determinator in Service Ecosystems" de Bård Tronvoll, publicado por Systems 2017, 5, 38

A suckiness dos gigantes nada pode contra isto

"Along with the ceaseless churn of collections — averaging at least four a year — designers leading major brands must invent It bags, launch mass-market fragrances and cosmetic lines, and produce ever more extravagant shows and events to feed social media. Despite this, what consumers long for are experiences, authenticity and community — concepts that, when touted for marketing purposes, quickly lose meaning.
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While running a small independent fashion label is more difficult in some ways than being part of a big conglomerate, it does allow the freedom to be true to one’s instincts and beliefs, which in turn leads to real brand community.
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who are transforming how business is done in their industry with practices that are ethical and equitable to their manufacturers, employees and the environment. They do this not because it is good business (it usually isn’t), but because it seems the obvious moral choice. And because they do this while creating fashion that articulates and, most importantly, anticipates what women want to express and how they want to feel, they have earned the devotion and loyalty of their customers, who tend to be talented, self-realized women: architects and actors, writers and gallery owners.
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Indeed, the quest to be true to one’s self is something all these designers share. Several years ago, Rachel Comey, 45, realized the usual fashion show setup — people crammed on hard benches to watch a few minutes of clothes on parade — didn’t do justice to the kinds of clothes she was making. Instead, Comey began hosting intimate dinner parties, where guests could converse while seeing pieces worn by models of various ages and races. Comey’s designs, which early on suited the creative Brooklyn woman who wanted to look equal parts sexy, comfortable and dorky, are sometimes deeply personal, riffing on her own girlhood memories." (1)
Um filme com um título que diz tudo "Hand-Crafted Is So In Right Now--And This Company Is Capitalizing On It"

Os gigantes vão ser úteis, como a Uber para limpar a legislação, para financiar o investimento em tecnologia que depois, com a sua democratização, poderão ser usados pelos independentes, "If the Shoe Fits: 3D Printing and the Future of Manufacturing Footwear", porque a suckiness vai dar cabo deles.




Trechos 1 retirados de "The Independent Women’s Designers Having a Big Moment"

quarta-feira, maio 09, 2018

A oportunidade chinesa (parte II)

Via @nticomuna cheguei a "Abyss & Habidecor exporta cada vez mais para a China":
"Dedicado à produção de têxteis para casa e decoração no segmento luxo, o grupo Abyss & Habidecor exporta cada vez mais para a China, destino onde as vendas têm crescido a um ritmo de 20% ao ano.
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A China faz em grandes quantidades, não é concorrência nenhuma. Nós somos uma empresa artesanal e eles não têm capacidade para fazer o que nós fazemos e todos os anos a nossas vendas para a China têm aumentado”,
...
Produzidos em máquinas manuais e com algodão egípcio Giza 70 – o que significa que foi plantado na década de 70 e tem, portanto, 40 anos – os artigos do grupo de Celso Lemos destinam-se exclusivamente ao segmento luxo."
Recordar "A oportunidade chinesa"

Privilegiar os inputs sobre os outputs (parte XI)



O amigo João PS no FB publicou este texto:
"Precisava de comprar 30 metros de cabo de som para substituir cabo velho que me faz estática numa aparelhagem. Só sexta-feira teria tempo para ir buscar. Comecei por pesquisar na net portuguesa. A minha velha loja de som, a Transsom, fechou, ou mudou de nome, não sei, já não a vejo há muito tempo. As duas hipóteses perto de casa eram a Worten e a FNAC. Na FNAC, uma dor, 10 minutos passados à procura no site e cabo de som a metro nem vê-lo. Na Worten ofereceram €9,99/10 metros (total €30) mas sem poder escolher a data de entrega. Perdi a paciência e fui à fiel companheira Amazon.it. Em 30 segundos e 3 cliques, 30 metros em bobina estavam encomendados com possibilidade de entrega em casa na sexta-feira. Preço total com entrega Expresso? €19,52. Ainda poupei 10 euros.
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Vem de a 3000 Km de distância, chega quando quero, e ainda é mais barato. A qualidade é sempre a esperada, e se um tipo tem qualquer dúvida sobre ela, a devolução é sempre possível sem chatices. [Moi ici: Este parágrafo do João é um desfilar do que Osterwalder coloca no lado do cliente no canvas da proposta de valor. O que gera ganho e o que reduz dor]
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Qual o segredo da Amazon? Penso que é por serem absolutamente racionais na gestão do negócio. Tudo é estudado, avaliado, medido, decidido e implementado com vista ao melhor interesse da empresa (através da satisfação do cliente).
- Notam a motivação da satisfação própria como melhor modo de obter a realização de satisfação dos outros? -
A Amazon é uma lição que deveríamos estudar nas Universidades de Gestão em vez de se encher os cérebros dos miúdos de calhamaços académicos de gurus."
A estratégia que a Amazon segue não é a única com viabilidade no mercado. A maior parte das empresas portuguesas não pode competir de igual para igual com a Amazon. Por isso, é preciso ter cuidado ao querer copiar a sua estratégia de eficiência.

No entanto, o João tem muita razão quando propõe que o estudo da Amazon seria muito mais útil que o debitar de vacuidades bem, ou mal, intencionadas de membros da tríade encalhados em fórmulas desenvolvidas para um outro tempo e mundo. Pessoalmente, usaria o exemplo da Amazon para exemplificar até à exaustão o conceito de empatia, o calçar os sapatos do cliente para facilitar-lhe a vida, coisa que o João não encontrou na FNAC e na Worten. Recordar a imagem de Alan Klement sobre o que ajuda ou dificulta a captar um novo cliente:
Aliviar a dor - está cá na data pedida
Benefícios - qualidade e poupança
Catalisadores - posso devolver na boa sem problemas
Minimizar o custo de mudar - em 30 segundos e 3 cliques


A imagem inicial retirei-a de uma apresentação no slideshare que infelizmente já não consigo encontrar para atribuir com toda a justiça ao autor.

terça-feira, maio 08, 2018

Parece anedota

"Only one-quarter of the managers surveyed could list three of the company’s five strategic priorities. Even worse, one-third of the leaders charged with implementing the company’s strategy could not list even one.
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These results are typical not just in the technology industry, but across a range of companies we have studied. Most organizations fall far short when it comes to strategic alignment: Our analysis of 124 organizations revealed that only 28% of executives and middle managers responsible for executing strategy could list three of their company’s strategic priorities."
Trecho retirado de "No One Knows Your Strategy — Not Even Your Top Leaders"

"Giants invariably descend into suckiness" (parte XII)

Parte I, parte IIparte IIIparte IVparte Vparte VIparte VIIparte VIIIparte IXparte X e parte XI.

Revolta contra a suckiness.

Em especial a parte X, acerca dos gigantes terem sido talhados para o Normalistão e falhem cada vez mais com o avanço de Mongo, eis o tema abordado por Seth Godin ontem em "Bigger to feel safer":
"Creative institutions get bigger so that they can avoid doing things that feel risky.
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They may rationalize this as leverage, as creating more impact. But it's a coin with two sides, and the other side is that they do proportionally more things that are reliable and fewer things that feel like they might fail.
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In other words, hiring more people makes their useful creative productivity go down.
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This is not the way it works in a factory. When Henry Ford hired more people for the assembly line, productivity went up. Things got more efficient. More lines, more plants, more hands led to more productivity. The natural scale of the enterprise was large indeed.
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But a creative studio, a marketing team, architects, strategists, programmers, writers, editors, city planners, teachers--the natural scale of the enterprise is smaller than you think. [Moi ici: O que dizemos acerca de Mongo? O triunfo da arte! Organizações que praticam a arte não podem ter sucesso com os pressupostos que resultavam no Normalistão]
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This is a new law of organizations, and it's not well understood."

segunda-feira, maio 07, 2018

A China a mudar

O original aqui, "China’s once-booming textile and clothing industry faces tough times", a tradução aqui, "China em apuros".

E o resultado na Europa,

Coisa de loucos (parte II)

Parte I.

Tanta iliteracia económica embebida neste título, "Custos laborais crescem pouco e impulsionam exportações".

Acreditam mesmo que as exportações portuguesas cresceram e crescerão por causa dos custos laborais baixos? Acaso os custos laborais portugueses podem competir com os custos laborais dos países do centro e leste da Europa?

Infelizmente, parte importante do crescimento das exportações nos próximos tempos vai ter um perfil diferente do verificado nos anos da troika, mais à custa de automóveis e outras commodities, e menos à custa de PME.


domingo, maio 06, 2018

Privilegiar os inputs sobre os outputs (parte X)

Parte I, parte II, parte IIIparte IV, parte V, parte VIparte VII, parte VIII e parte IX.

Privilegiar os inputs sobre os outputs nada mais nada menos do que aplicar uma regra fundamental do Design Thinking.

Começar pelo que o cliente, ou o consumidor, ou o prescritor (começar por um actor do ecossistema) precisa ou quer fazer. Quais as suas motivações, que problema é que está a tentar resolver.


A Empatia é a chave. Não é acerca da nossa empresa. Precisamos da capacidade de perceber e partilhar os sentimentos de outros. E recuo a Março de 2011 a: "Eles não. Eu, para chegar ao nós"




O papel das redes e as organizações de Mongo

Em Mongo, terra de tribos e de artesãos, as organizações vão ser diferentes das criadas para o Normalistão.
"network forms of organization - typified by reciprocal patterns of communication and exchange - represent a viable pattern of economic organization.

Pre-existing networks of relationships enable small firms to gain an established foothold almost overnight. These networks serve as conduits to provide small firms with the capacity to meet resource and functional needs.

I have a good deal of sympathy regarding the view the economic exchange is embedded in a particular social structural context. Yet it is also the case that certain forms of exchange are more social - this is, more dependent on relationships, mutual interest enter, and reputation - as well as less guided by a formal structure of authority. My aim is to identify a coherent set of factors the make it meaningful to talk about networks as a distinctive form of coordinating economic activity.

When the items exchanged between buyers and sellers processed qualities that are not easily measured, and the relations are so long-term and recurrent that it is difficult to speak of the parties as separate entities, can we still regard is as a market exchange? When the entangling of obligation  and reputation reaches a point that he actions of the parties are interdependent, but there is no common ownership or legal framework, do we not need a new conceptual toolkit to describe and analyze this relationship?

Network forms of exchange, however, entail indefinite, sequential transactions within the context of a general pattern of interaction. Sanctions are typically normative rather than legal.

In networks, the preferred option is often one of creating indebtedness and reliance over the long haul. Each approach does devalues the other: prosperous market traders would be viewed as petty and untrustworthy shysters in networks, while successful participants in networks who carried those practices into competitive markets would be viewed as naïve and foolish. Within hierarchies, communication and exchange is shaped by concerns with career mobility - in this sense, exchange is bound up with considerations of personal advancement.

Networks are “lighter on their feet” than hierarchies. In network modes of resource allocation, transactions occur neither through discrete exchanges nor by administrative fiat, but through networks of individuals engaged in reciprocal, preferential, mutually supportive actions. Networks can be complex: they involve neither the explicit criteria on the market, nor the familiar paternalism of the hierarchy, basic assumption of network relationships is that one party is dependent on the resources controlled by another, and that there are gains to be had by the pooling of resources. In essence, the parties to a network agreed to forego the right to pursue their own interests at the expense of others.
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In networks forms of resource allocation, individual units exist not by themselves, but in relation to other units. These relationships to establish and sustain, thus they constrain both parters ability to adapt to changing circumstances. As networks evolve, it becomes more economically sensible to exercise voice rather than exit. Benefits and burdens come to be shared. Expectations are not frozen, but change as circumstances dictate. A mutual orientation - knowledge which the parties assume each has about the other and upon which day draw in communication and problem solving - is established. In short, complementarity and accommodation are the cornerstones of successful production networks. … the “entangling strings” of reputation, friendship, interdependence, and altruism become integral parts of the relationship.
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Networks are particularly apt for circumstances in which there is a need for efficient, reliable information. The most useful information is rarely that which flows down the formal chain of command in an organization, or that which can be inferred from shifting price signals. Rather, it is that which is obtained from someone whom you have dealt with in the past found to be a reliable. You trust best information that comes from someone you know well. … information passed through networks is “thicker” [Moi ici: Como não associar este "thicker" ao densificar das relações em Normannthan information obtained in the market, and “freer” than communicated in a hierarchy. Networks, then, are especially useful for the exchange of commodities whose value is not easily measured. Such qualitative matters as know how, technological capability, a particular approach or style of production, a spirit of innovation or experimentation, or a philosophy of zero defects are very hard to place a price tag on. They are not easily traded in markets nor communicated through a corporate hierarchy. The open-ended, relational features of networks, with their relative absence of explicit quid pro quo behavior, greatly enhance the ability to transmit and learn new knowledge and skills."


"Neither Market Nor Hierarchy: Network Forms of Organization" de Walter Powell, publicado por Research in Organizational Behavior, Janeiro de 1990.