From CSR to ROI at Nike

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Many firms seem stuck with the idea that Corp Social Responsibility = cost. A free case study from MIT on Nike makes the case that CSR has driven ROI, though also makes clear the challenges of working out what to tackle, at least in their case. It would seem worthwhile for other firms to read this and ask if their might be a case for them also to plug CSR into their strategies, rather than treating it as a ...

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Strategy Dynamics Breifing 7: Problems with typical approach to business planning and forecasting

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Why is the typical approach to business planning and forecasting flawed?

Strategic planning generally aims to get to an estimate of future sales and profits, so how these items are estimated is critical. Typically, you would start with a forecast for demand, and by assessing how competition could affect prices, get a value-forecast for the market. Setting targets for increased market share would then give a forecast for sales volume and revenue. There are however problems associated with this typical approach ...

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German secret of success

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Fascinating Economist article on two recent studies of Germany’s outstanding long-run success. It’s down to their ‘Mittelstand’ mid-sized companies relentless pursuit of apparently boring but lucrative niches, and similar strategies by their larger, but little-known firms. More detail on their strategies in the article and references. Others tell me this is backed up by very strong involvement from bank-investors, rather than disinterested arms-length investors nagged by foolish analysts chasing every quarterly forecast. Not sexy, but rock-solid.

www.strategydynamics.com

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Internet Futures

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Predicting where technology could go is fraught with danger, but we should still explore possible futures and test our strategy against them. So World Must Prep for Bigger Net from Monitor looks a very useful resource. It is backed by Cisco research and scenario-based thinking from Global Business Network – and no, I’m not going to try second-guessing their findings!

www.strategydynamics.com

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Strategy Dynamics Breifing 6: An important distinction: time-periods versus instants in time

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There is an important distinction between time-periods and instants in time. A previous briefing emphasised that ‘performance depends on resources’, but if performance is reported over a period and resources are reported at points in time, we risk comparing apples with oranges!

Most of what companies report about their performance concerns how well they have done during a certain period, the latest month or a financial year for example – how high their sales rate has been, how much profit they ...

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