Interested in Competitive Intelligence qualifications. We are faculty members of the Institute of Competitive Intelligence offering  Accredited CI & MI training

On July 21st 1906, Marshall McLuhan was born - 111 years ago today.

McLuhan who died in 31 December 1980 is remembered for coining the expression "the medium is the message" and the term global village in 1962! He also predicted the World Wide Web almost 30 years before it was invented.
"The next medium, whatever it is—it may be the extension of consciousness—will include television as its content, not as its environment, and will transform television into an art form. A computer as a research and communication instrument could enhance retrieval, obsolesce mass library organization, retrieve the individual's encyclopedic function and flip into a private line to speedily tailored data of a saleable kind." (The Gutenberg Galaxy - 1962).

McLuhan appears in an iconic scene in Woody Allen's Annie Hall - showing how he traversed the worlds of academia and was relevant even in popular culture.

Today we take for granted many of the things McLuhan predicted - and the inter-connectedness of the world through media such as Facebook and LinkedIn, the information retrieval using Google, the merger of television with electronic media via YouTube, the internationalisation of trade.... We do now live in a Global village.

This clip (and others following) show how relevant his ideas from the 1960s are today.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=HeDnPP6ntic

And for those who don't recall the Annie Hall clip, it's here. It shows how easy it is to misinterpret ideas....
www.youtube.com/watch?v=jRcMsqCbzWk
... See MoreSee Less

1 month ago  ·  

View on Facebook

A friend just posted a quotation that was attributed to Mark Twain:

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so".

Sounds good - and is certainly an apposite quote for competitive intelligence. The problem is that Mark Twain never wrote this.

One lesson in competitive intelligence is to ALWAYS check sources so that you don't make decisions based on false information that looks as if it is true.

One needs an antenna to spot these - as because they look true, people believe them, act on them and so continue spreading false information - hence developing bad strategies that lead to failure. (They then respond: "I acted on the best intelligence available at the time. How was I to know it was wrong?". The reason is you need to check - or if you can't check, build in a contingency plan. This is the reason that the US/UK invaded Iraq. It was based on the "best intelligence" except it was biased from a poor source and nobody checked the source. They just accepted what was said).

In this case the quotation is false. It's easily checked and like so many such quotations, is being spread around until somebody famous who should know better quotes it. Then it's believed as fact as the famous person MUST have checked it and be right. Except often they haven't. The quotation occurs in the film "The Big Short" and also "An Inconvenient Truth" where Al Gore attributes it to Mark Twain.

newrepublic.com/.../it-aint-dont-know-gets...

There are lots more such fake quotes - some turning into costly mistakes. The California Academy of Sciences embedded a fake quote they attributed to Charles Darwin into their entrance floor.
... See MoreSee Less

2 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook

Hand gestures can mean different things - and using a gesture that is OK in one country can be a real faux-pas in other countries. Knowing what not to use is essential in business, training and international presentations

10 hand gestures to avoid internationally #Infographic - pointing, use of left-hand, etc. bit.ly/2rlRvp3
... See MoreSee Less

3 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook

Top languages used today on the Internet - and their growth. (With thanks to @Luis_Madureira)

Originally, the dominant language by far on the Internet was English. That lead has now decreased. A third of all around 3bn+ web users converse in English but just over a quarter (26%) are Chinese speakers and 10% are Spanish speakers. That means 30% of web-users use another language to converse.

This has implications for international business as you can no longer view English as the web's lingua franca. If you want to do business with China, Chinese is the language you should use. The same with Spanish, Arabic, and other top European AND Asian languages.
... See MoreSee Less

3 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook

Leadership is making sure that the whole group is with you - not that you are above them but that they and you are all in this together and if the weakest fail then it's a fault in your leadership.

"A group of wolves:

The 3 in front are old & sick, they walk in front to set the pace of the running group lest they get left behind.

The next 5 are the strongest & best, they are tasked to protect the front side if there is an attack.

The pack in the middle are always protected from any attack.

The 5 behind them are also among the strongest & best; they are tasked to protect the back side if there is an attack.

The last one is the LEADER. He ensures that no one is left behind. He keeps the pack unified and on the same path. He is always ready to run in any direction to protect & serves as the 'bodyguard' to the entire group."

www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6268165326093979648/
... See MoreSee Less

3 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook

A Strategist’s Guide to Artificial Intelligence.

Assisted, augmented and autonomous intelligence will all play roles in future corporate/organisational strategies. Companies need to make decisions today so they are prepared for future #AI requirements to keep them ahead.

www.strategy-business.com/article/A-Strategists-Guide-to-Artificial-Intelligence
... See MoreSee Less

3 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook

There's always a conflict between ethics and profit. Profit often comes first - explaining why so many companies behave unethically. When caught out, they lose - as long-term it is ethics that build brand and customer loyalty that lead to profits. However too often the profit motive is ingrained in a company culture, over and above ethical behaviour.

Dilbert cartoons over the last week have been looking at corporate culture and today's cartoon shows why ethical approaches lose out to the profit motive.
... See MoreSee Less

4 months ago  ·  

View on Facebook
Print Friendly