Monday, June 25, 2012

You Call That Innovation? --- Companies Love to Say They Innovate, but the Term Has Begun to Lose Meaning

Got innovation? Just about every company says it does. Businesses throw around the term to show they're on the cutting edge of everything from technology and medicine to snacks and cosmetics.

Companies are touting chief innovation officers, innovation teams, innovation strategies, and even innovation days. But that doesn't mean the companies are actually doing any innovating. Instead they are using the word to convey monumental change when the progress they're describing is quite ordinary.

Like the once ubiquitous buzzwords "synergy" and "optimization," innovation is in danger of becoming a cliché - if it isn't one already. Read the WSJ article.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Ha, I've heard this conversation far too many times

(Great find Andy and Brendan!)

In praise of misfits

Why business needs people with Asperger’s syndrome, attention-deficit disorder and dyslexia. This NYT article was (unintentionally?) hilarious. My favorites line:
Recruiters have noticed that the mental qualities that make a good computer programmer resemble those that might get you diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome: an obsessive interest in narrow subjects; a passion for numbers, patterns and machines; an addiction to repetitive tasks; and a lack of sensitivity to social cues. Some joke that the internet was invented by and for people who are “on the spectrum”, as they put it in the Valley. Online, you can communicate without the ordeal of meeting people.

And this is inspirational for all of us who switch around numbers!
Julie Login of Cass Business School surveyed a group of entrepreneurs and found that 35% of them said that they suffered from dyslexia, compared with 10% of the population as a whole and 1% of professional managers. Prominent dyslexics include the founders of Ford, General Electric, IBM and IKEA, not to mention more recent successes such as Charles Schwab (the founder of a stockbroker), Richard Branson (the Virgin Group), John Chambers (Cisco) and Steve Jobs (Apple).

(Thanks, Tom!)

Happily Ever, After We Split

Reach the Modern Love column. Found it strangely comforting. (Thanks, Alessia)

Not a good day for the homeland

(Thanks, Tom)

TED talk: Tali Sharot - The optimism bias

(Thanks, Scott!)

Nurturing a Baby and a Start-Up Business

Read the NYT article. The pros and cons of motherhood and entrepreneurial / flexible lifestyle. Flip side of the Atlantic article!

William Li: Can we eat to starve cancer?

William Li presents a new way to think about treating cancer and other diseases: anti-angiogenesis, preventing the growth of blood vessels that feed a tumor. The crucial first (and best) step: Eating cancer-fighting foods that cut off the supply lines and beat cancer at its own game.

William Li heads the Angiogenesis Foundation, a nonprofit that is re-conceptualizing global disease fighting.

(Thanks, Gloria)

If You Want to Succeed in Business, Read More Novels

Couldn't agree more! Read the Forbes article. (Thanks, Tom)

As a weapon in the hands of the restless poor (On the Uses of a Liberal Education)

A man writing a book about poverty learned a great deal about the politics of being poor in the process. He visited the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility and met many women who had led difficult lives. Learning to reflect is the way out of poverty, and a liberal education helps.

Earl Shorris wrote this article in 1997 in Harper's Magazine. So good! Here is another link if the first doesn't work. (Thanks, Gloria and Howie!)

Undercover Billionaire: Sara Blakely Joins The Rich List Thanks To Spanx

Sara Blakely, started Spanx with $5,000 in her savings account, never took on any debt, never spent a penny on advertising, and has converted it into a billion-dollar company!

Sara, who has 100% ownership, lists out the 10 Lessons that you likely won't hear in business school.

(Thanks, Tom)

RNC Latino Site Features Stock Photo of Asian Children

"Mitt Romney has been increasingly keen to court the Latino vote, which is believed to heavily favor President Obama over the former Massachusetts governor for president. In the latest Latino Decisions poll, Obama held a 43-point lead over Romney.  But the Republican National Committee's Hispanic site may not be doing Romney any favors."

Hilarious! Read more in US News. (Thanks, Tom)

Why Women Still Can’t Have It All

"It’s time to stop fooling ourselves, says a woman who left a position of power: the women who have managed to be both mothers and top professionals are superhuman, rich, or self-employed. If we truly believe in equal opportunity for all women, here’s what has to change."

Read Anne-Marie Slaughter's article in the Atlantic.  And the NYT response to the highly-talked about article.

(Thanks to all of you that sent this my way! Emily, Caroline, Jamie, Alessia, Tom, Julia... and others I may have missed)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Mary Meeker’s eye-popping annual Internet Trends report hits the web

Check out the slideshow. Pages 25-85 were fascinating. (Thanks, Jules)

Seeking Academic Edge, Teenagers Abuse Stimulants

"In four months of reporting on high school students turning to prescription drugs like Adderall to improve their academics, I was struck by the candor and concern of the teenagers I talked to at schools across the United States." Read the NYT article.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Why Women Aren’t C.E.O.s, According to Women Who Almost Were

"It’s not a pipeline problem. It’s about loneliness, competition and deeply rooted barriers." Read more in the NYT .