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28 OCTOBER 2014

Fredrick Winslow Taylor and the Myth of Efficiency

"[Fredrick Winslow] Taylor sought to precisely measure the movements of factory workers and their timings to make them as efficient as humanly possible. This made him beloved by executives and detested on the factory floor, and it also made him one of the world's first management consultants. In a recent article in The New Yorker, 'Not So Fast,' the historian Jill Lepore takes a hard look at Taylor and his claims for scientific management. According to new research, he was a better salesman than consultant. Many of his facts were made up, and most of his results never materialized. We now know that Lillian Gilbreth, an early proponent of scientific management, had serious doubts about the movement she helped proselytize.

All this is important because Taylor, with his system of scientific management, was the father of efficiency. From scientific management we get the lust for efficiency in business. It became part of the dogma of business schools, almost none of which existed before his time. Business schools from their earliest days have promoted efficiency and the handling of business as something like industrial engineering. From operations to finance, from marketing to sales, business school education has focused on narrowing problems, identifying resources and working to get the most out of the least."

(Adam Hartung, 16 October 2009, Forbes)

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20th century • Adam Hartung • business education • business efficiency • business growth • business inertia • business leaders • business leadership • business management • business school education • business schools • Clayton Christensencompetitive advantagecost-cutting • cultural myth • customer demand • customer satisfactiondehumanisationdisruptive innovationdogmaefficiency • efficiency in business • factory floor • factory workerForbesFordismFrederick TaylorGary Hamel • history of technology • ideationincremental improvementsincremental innovationindustrial engineering • innovation resources • Jill Lepore • legacy businesses • Lillian Gilbrethman machine • management consultant • manufacturingmanufacturing industries • measuring movement • order and control • organisation leadership • organisational problems • price wars • products and services • Rakesh Khurana • scientific management • taylorism • The New Yorkerwaste prevention • what organisations do

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
22 JANUARY 2014

The Importance of Agency Culture

"How well an agency can articulate its organizational culture is a source of competitive advantage. How well the agency is positioned vis–à–vis its competitive set –– with a clear communication of its value proposition –– is essential when wooing prospective clients. An agency's true points of differentiation are often grounded in its vision, service standards, creativity and other behaviors that are reinforced either formally or informally within the shop itself."

(Lorraine Rojek, 25 February 2009,Adweek)

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2009advertising agenciesAdweekagency culture • agency employee • agency teams • clear communicationclient and agency • client organisation • competitive advantage • competitive set • corporate culture • creative idea • cultural compatibility • cultural differences • cultural fit • cultural lens • design agencies • design client • design culturedigital agency • distinctive culture • harmonious relationships • new business opportunitiesorganisational culture • point of difference • point of differentiation • prospective clients • screening criteria • stand out from the crowd • strategic direction • studio culture • value proposition • value system • work contexts

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
01 DECEMBER 2013

Ways of Thinking and Organisational Causality

"There are several types or ways of thinking. Each of these ways of thinking comes with its own set of assumptions, or paradigms, that, while making the thinking process work efficiently, also constrains the process to a particular view of causality, organization, and management's and members' roles in an organization. These types of thinking have their roots in natural sciences, social sciences, and philosophies. They can become so pervasive and dominant in management discourse that they become invisible, being applied without consideration for their assumed causality. Clearly identifying and classifying types of thinking raises awareness of what thinking is actually taking place, and at the same time challenges management to improve their thinking based on this knowledge of thinking."

(Kim Korn, Create Advantage Inc.)

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TAGS

analytical thinking • assumed causality • autonomous human choice • business management • business organisation • causalitycompetitive advantage • competitive positioning • complex responsive processes thinking • complexity science • decision making • formative causality • Georg Hegel • Hegelian philosophy • holistic thinking • identity-difference thinking • imaginative thinkingImmanuel Kant • inside-out thinking • insightintuitionIsaac Newton • Kantian philosophy • knowledge of thinking • knowledge paradigm • management discourse • mechanistic perspective • natural causality • natural sciences • natural systems • organisation causality • organisation evolution • organisational behaviourorganisational capabilities • organisational causality • organisational dynamics • outside-in thinking • part-whole thinkingphilosophypsychological perception • rational choice thinking • rationalist causality • rationalist perspectiverationalist traditionsocial sciencestrategic thinkingsynthetic thinking • system-environment thinking • systemic process thinking • systemic thinking • systems approach • systems science • systems thinking • thinking roles • thinking styles • transformative causality • types of thinking • ways of thinking

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
09 MAY 2012

Welcome to the Era of Design

"All businesses, no matter what they make or sell, should recognize the power and financial value of good design.

Obviously, there are many different types of design: graphic, brand, packaging, product, process, interior, interaction/user experience, Web and service design, to name but a few. ...

You see, expecting great design is no longer the preserve of a picky design–obsessed urban elite – that aesthetically sensitive clique who'd never dare leave the house without their Philippe Starck eyewear and turtleneck sweaters and buy only the right kind of Scandinavian furniture. Instead, there's a new, mass expectation of good design: that products and services will be better thought through, simplified, made more intuitive, elegant and more enjoyable to use.

Design has finally become democratized, and we marketers find ourselves with new standards to meet in this new 'era of design.' To illustrate, Apple, the epitome of a design–led organization, now has a market capitalization of $570 billion, larger than the GDP of Switzerland. Its revenue is double Microsoft's, a similar type of technology organization but one not truly led by design (just compare Microsoft Windows with Apple's Lion operating system)."

(Adam Swann, 5/03/2012, Forbes)

Fig.1 "Mille Miglia" bicycle by VIVA [http://www.vivabikes.com/].

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advertisingaestheticsAmazon.comApple • Apple Care • applied discipline • B2Bbrandbrandingbrandsbusiness • business to business • CMO Network • competitive advantagecreativity • customer recommendation • customer satisfaction • customer-centric • customersdesign • design-led organisation • elegant design • employee satisfaction • enjoyable to use • era of design • experience design • feel good • financial value • First Direct • Forbesgood designgraphic designhyperconnectedIKEAinnovative designinteraction designinterior designintuitive designleadership • led by design • marketer • marketingmeaningful experiences • Michael Eisner • MicrosoftMicrosoft Windows • new era • new standardsoperating systempackagingPhilippe StarckPinterest • process design • product design • rewarding experiences • service design • service touchpoints • social media • social-media-fueled society • Switzerland • urban elite • user experience designweb design

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
28 JANUARY 2012

Institute of International and European Affairs: Euro Crisis Infographic

"The IIEA is pleased to announce the publication of our latest infographic. The European Union's Response to the Euro Crisis details all of the EU's main policy responses to Europe's interlinked financial, economic and sovereign debt crisis and presents some further options that are under consideration."

(Institute of International and European Affairs, 27 January 2012)

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2012 • breakfast briefings • challengescharitable statuscompetitive advantage • corporate networking • crisis • decision makers • economic crisisEU policy agendasEuro crisisEuropeEuropean affairsfinancial crisis • forecasts • global financial crisis • global policy agendas • high-level analysis • IIEAindependentinfographicsinformation graphicsInstitute of International and European Affairs • International affairs • Ireland • keynote speeches • luncheons • new solutionsnew thinkingnot-for-profitpanel discussionspolicy agenda • policy options • private sectorpublic sectorresearch programme • roundtable discussions • seminars • think tank • thought-leaders • workshops

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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