≡ Menu

INNOVATION AND THE RECESSION

Doing more with less during a recession

Small business owners are often the hardest hit during an economic downturn and the question is how to survive until the recovery begins. This often requires examining every line of expenditure, but at the same time not being blinded to new opportunities. Where do you find guidance as to what you should give priority to?

Who is your accounting software provider and what are they doing to support you?It may seem strange that an accounting software provider would actually go out of their way to help clients when they would be under pressure themselves. Yet that is what is happening. It may be that the provider has an innovative approach to the market place and is proactive in looking for opportunities to support its clients. It is worth a telephone call to ask them and if they haven’t commenced a support program yet, ask them where you can get support.

Look for a Business Resource Centre to support you with ideas

I use MYOB for my accounting software and they have recently started myBRC
(Business Resource Centre) which is aimed at helping small business owners cope with the issues that the recession has brought to their business.

They have done research on how they can best support their clients who use their software. Needless, to say I am very impressed with my software supplier. They have said in their introduction to the service that they recognize that their clients “are time poor and money poor and struggle to find good advisors and source of information to help them make the right decision.”

It is good to see that MYOB should be responding in an innovative manner to the recession to help its clients and to build a sense of community over the internet. I hope that your accounting software provider is responding in a similar way

Jack Taggerty

{ 0 comments }

IS OUTSOURCING AN INNOVATION?

“The Dawn of the E-Lance Economy”

The above heading was the title of an article that was published in the Harvard Business Review in May 1998. The main thrust of the article was that the use of the personal computer and the internet was changing the basis of how work can be completed. Now, this has happened and there is an actual outsourcing company called Elance. I have used it myself and it works very successfully. Purchasers and suppliers can be located in different countries anywhere in the world. This initially must have presented some management challenges, but these were overcome by working with leading industries for channel distribution, system integration and value added solutions and technology.

There are of course other outsourcing companies other than Elance, but this is the one that I have used. The operations of Elance can be reviewed at http://www.elance.com.

“Get jobs done. Hire, manage, pay experts online”
Ten years ago if you had said to me that one day I would be listing a job for completion on the internet, defining the performance benchmarks, reviewing and paying the supplier on completion totally online I would have laughed at you. I think nothing of it nowdays. I checked the Elance website today and there are 25,018 new jobs posted, 83,230 experts active and the earnings for work done since 2005 is $160,759,740. This is innovation at work throughout the world.

Amazon Product Description

Quote

Revised for 2009 and beyond, The Black Book of Outsourcing is a comprehensive guide and directory for the evolving field of outsourcing, including expert advice on how to operate an outsourcing program. Valuable governance checklists, offshoring insights, best practices and one-of-kind resources are featured in this bible of the outsourcing industry. First published in 2005, this topical, bestselling manual explores the evolution of both outsourcing buyers and suppliers.
Outsourcing and research gurus Douglas Brown and Scott Wilson chart a course of advice for business leaders charged with managing sourcing initiatives, present a wealth of opportunities for job seekers, and offer insights for entrepreneurial thinkers and investors worldwide
Quote

Can outsourcing help employers and employees during hard times?When a business owner or manager under financial pressure sits down to consider his options and to make decisions high on his list of options will be to hire freelance workers to complete critical work which he longer has the resources to do. Once the freelancer’s work is completed he no longer has the responsibility or cost involved in maintaining their employment. This will help reduce the operational costs of running the business while still completing essential work.

From the redundant employee’s point of view where they have the skills that can be offered on a freelance basis this can help bridge the gap until they can find employment. This means that they can bid for jobs throughout the world without their sphere of expertise. This approach applies to a host of graphic designers, programmers, web designers, writers, freelance consultants and other professionals.

Amazon Product Description

Quote
Thinking about becoming your own boss and embarking on the wonderful and rewarding journey of freelancing? The Principles of Successful Freelancing is for you. In this easy-to follow guide you’ll learn what’s important in transforming your skills into a booming freelance business.

This book leads you through the entire process, from getting started, through to winning and keeping loyal clients. Running a successful freelance business is easy, and with the information in this book, you’ll confidently turn your freelancing dream into a profitable reality.
• Learn how to make a smooth transition into freelancing
• Understand how to effectively manage your money
• Ensure you spend your time on the right activities
• Discover why a work/life balance is important
• Learn how your network can support you and your business
• Overcome your fear of selling
• And much more …

The 12 Principles Of Successful Freelancing
1. Get Organized
Keep your workspace tidy and plan ahead (short- and long-term).
2. Control Stress
Remain calm and work through issues to avoid early burnout..
3. Research
Spend quality time researching your proposed business-it’s more than a five minute web surf.
4. Be Passionate
Love your work! You should enjoy what you do for a living.
5. Budget
Save for a rainy day rather than spend every cent as it comes in.
6. Value your Health
Bad health stops you from working. Take time to exercise and maintain a nutritious diet.
7. Embrace Selling
Enjoy the sales challenge-it’s easier than you think!
8. Satisfy Customers
Don’t do average work-exceed their expectations and make them need you.
9. Grow Your Network
Value family and friends’ support, and meet new people all the time.
10. Maintain Cashflow
It’s what is in the bank that counts, not what you are billing-understand the difference.
11. Continually Learn
Keep acquiring new skills and knowledge, every week. Let it slip and you could be left behind.
12. Achieve a Work/Life Balance
Your life should be more than work-maintain a good balance for health and success.
About the Author
Miles Burke has been involved in designing and developing websites since 1994. In 2002 Miles became the Managing Director of Bam Creative, his design studio located Western Australia. He serves as Chairperson of the Australian Web Industry Association, and was a winner of the “2007 Top 40 under 40” award by Business News.

Unquote

Outsourcing and freelancing will become a critical means of survival for business owners, managers and redundant employees over the next few years as the world works its way through this recession.

Jack Taggerty


{ 0 comments }

INNOVATION AND CUSTOMER SERVICE

Innovation in Customer Service does not Recognize Recessions

There is an important point to note about good ideas and innovation – it does not matter whether it is thought of in a boom or a recession! A good idea to improve customer service is always welcome.

SMS Prescription Reminder Service

There are not many baby boomers who have not taken a medical prescription in their lives and there are many people who are taking ongoing medication. Remembering to have your prescription filled is a significant issue for many people.

I was pleasantly surprised on my last trip to the chemist when I handed my prescription in I was told that the wait would be half an hour as the chemists were under pressure, but would I like to use their new SMS Prescription Reminder Service.

This is what the service document offered:

Quote

FREE SMS PRESCRIPTION REMINDER SERVICE.

Tired of waiting for your prescription to be dispensed?

Always forgetting to get your next repeat filled before your current supply runs out?

Lost any scripts lately?

We can now fix all these common problems with our new FREE SMS PRESCRIPTION REMINDER SERVICE.
Simply sign up for this free service, leave your prescription repeats with us and when you’re next dispensing is due we will SMS you a reminder.

When you reply to our SMS we will prepare your script and have it waiting for you to collect.

CONVENIENT
SECURE
FREE

Unquote

What does this service mean for the customer and the supplier?It is clear what this service supplies to the customer, but it also allows the supplier to do the work in down time for their employees. It effectively manages the
employees’ time better and spreads the workload away from peaks and troughs.

Innovation and customer service can clearly be a win /win as in this situation. This principle applies to many customer service interactions and I will look out for other opportunities to comment on. This change could easily have been as a result of a business process improvement suggestion put forward by an employee to a business Innovation Program.

Jack Taggerty


{ 0 comments }

WILL AARP’S LEADERSHIP SAVE THE BABY BOOMERS?

Who is AARP?

Before I can answer the Leadership question it is important to understand who the AARP organization is and who they represent.

AARP was formerly know as the American Association of Retired Persons, but changed its name to AARP to better reflect its mission statement as “a non partisan membership organization for people age 50 and over. AARP is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for all as we age. We lead positive social change and deliver value to members through information, advocacy and service.”

With over 40 million members AARP is one of the leading lobby groups for positive change in the United States and the world.

What are AARP activities?

AARP lobbies strongly on issues that affect the aging population. The lobbying efforts are aimed at both state and national governments, but it does not support or oppose any political parties or candidates.

AARP Services was founded in 1999 and provides a wide range of services and products to its members and has established other linked organizations that provide endorsed financial products. The full range of services provided can be reviewed at their website http://www.aarp.org. or an amalgamation of writers’ views at Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AARP.

Communications in its many forms features strongly in AARP services, such as:
• AARP The Magazine
• AARP Bulletin
• Segunda Juventud
• Live and Learn
• AARP radio and television programs
• AARP lifestyle program featuring experts in special fields
• Divided we Fail campaign
• Future Champions campaign

AARP’s Thought Leadership

You cannot help, but admire the non partisan leadership of AARP with their Divided We Fail and Future Champions Campaigns as they seek to engage the American public at all levels in the need for reform. Wikipedia provided an overview at: Divided We Fail. I quote the following sections:

Quote

Divided We Fail

In early 2007 AARP launched “Divided We Fail,” designed to address health care and long-term financial security. The initiative was launched with Business Roundtable and the Service Employees International Union, and encompasses advertising in national outlets and in the primary states, online activities, and traditional grassroots work, in order to engage the public, business and elected officials in the debate, and to encourage public leaders to offer solutions, according to the AARP.[11] Nancy LeaMond, executive officer for social impact, said, “We want to really get to these candidates and ask for action, answers and accountability on these questions.”[12]
In November 2007, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) joined the Divided We Fail leadership. [13]
The initiative uses an “elephonkey” mixed animal as its symbol, with the head and forelegs of the Republican elephant and the ears, hindquarters, and tail of the kicking Democratic donkey. “Champ” quickly became a recognizable symbol of the Divided We Fail initiative, fostered in part by television commercials that ran across the country. In addition, Divided We Fail Florida incorporated the initiative’s mascot into an interactive educational vehicle, dubbed the “Champmobile,” which traveled across the state and throughout the United States encouraging voters to “Let your voice be heard!”
[edit] Future Champions
In February 2007, AARP announced the launch of a new advertising campaign designed to address issues that will impact future generations and showcase the AARP brand. The campaign, called “Future Champions,” features children talking about the state of healthcare and financial security. The multigenerational focus is designed to reinforce the AARP’s Divided We Fail coalition.[14]

Unquote

AARP International

AARP has a global view of the reforms needed to help those over age 50 with the many global challenges ahead. It is leading the world in many areas. An example of this is: “On January 8-9, 2009 AARP and the Council for the Third Age gathered more than 400 opinion leaders from 16 countries for the Reinventing Retirement Asia” conference in Singapore. Many of the critical issues for the 50+ were discussed.

AARP International has recognized that it is not only words that will help change the approach to employment for the 50+, but it has introduced awards to recognize employers who have demonstrated innovative workforce or human resources practices for the 50+ employees. For 2009 the award is the AARP International Innovative Employer Awards. Applications can be made online.

It is worth visiting the website of AARP International at http://www.aarpinternational.org/ to peruse the reports that are available to download

AARP’S vision

It is clear for anyone reading the websites detailing the information, products and services that AARP has a clear vision of what the organization wants to achieve in supporting its 50+ members. I believe that it will change the future because it is reinventing retirement for the baby boomers and future generations of not only American retirees, but those of other countries who will follow its lead through AARP International

The critical issues that the American people 50+ are in many respects universal in nature and if AARP manages to challenge and change the vested interests that produce many of the attitudes, products, policies and services this will lead to change world wide.

Jack Taggerty

{ 0 comments }

THOUGHT LEADERSHIP

What is “Thought Leadership”?

Peter Drucker, the noted writer on management, is reported to have said “there is nothing as useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.” This means, of course, that leadership and innovation are critical to businesses at all times, but more so during times of recession when resources are limited. It is important to examine all areas where processes can be eliminated and innovative thought applied. However, what is also important is that recessions can create opportunity for innovative solutions to be applied to problems. Peter Drucker’s book on Innovation and Entrepreneurship has stood the test of time and is applicable today as it was when first published:

Innovation and Entrepreneurship. There is a review of the book at the end of this link and you should read the following review as well:

Jan Phillips book “The Art of Original Thinking: The Making of a Thought Leader” examines more closely what is required for individuals and organizations to ignite their original thinking and capitalize on opportunities The Art of Original Thinking: The Making of a Thought Leader.

It is clear that Thought Leadership is exactly what it says. It means thinking originally about what exists at the moment and inventing the future and if this means better or new processes or products than that is the road that should be followed. This does, of course, mean for all organizations better people management whether by introducing a Business Process Improvement Program and an Innovation Program or revisiting what exists already.
Read what the writers at Wikipedia have to say on the subject of Thought Leadership
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thought_Leadership
Quote

Thought leader is a buzzword or article of jargon used to describe a futurist or person who is recognized among peers and mentors for innovative ideas and demonstrates the confidence to promote or share those ideas as actionable distilled insights (thinklets). Thought leadership is an increasingly vital driver of business success. The term was first coined in 1994, by Joel Kurtzman, editor-in-chief of the magazine, Strategy & Business. The term was used to designate interview subjects for that magazine who had contributed new thoughts to business. Among the first “thought leaders,” were British management thinker, Charles Handy, who advanced the idea of a “portfolio worker” and the “Shamrock Organization”, Stanford economist Paul Romer, Mitsubishi president, Minoru Makihara, and University of Michigan strategist, C.K. Prahalad, author of a number of well known works in corporate strategy including “The Core Competence of the Corporation” (Harvard Business Review, May-June, 1990); and his co-author, Gary Hamel, a professor at the London Business School. Since that time, the term has spread from business to other disciplines and has come to mean someone who enlivens old processes with new ideas. As a result, there are thought leaders in the sciences, humanities and even in government. This term can also be applied to an applied research Center of Excellence, or company – often a small business that integrates professional ethics with highly-effective leadership development.[1] According to commentators such as Elise Bauer, a distinguishing characteristic of a thought leader is “the recognition from the outside world that the company deeply understands its business, the needs of its customers, and the broader marketplace in which it operates.”[2] Leadership is deliberately causing people-driven actions in a planned way to accomplish the leaders agenda. —Phil Crosby, [3] Some visions of thought leaders are “to fuel the evolution of leaders who choose to contribute to sustaining life (body, mind and spirit) in ourselves, our organizations, and our communities”. With the belief “that leadership development is rooted in personal development & organizational transformation is rooted in individual transformation.[4] Thought leadership is also an emerging discipline in its own right. Our ability to understand its core practices, then to effectively apply them, are the keys to positioning ourselves and our companies for next level growth.[5]

Quote

It is clear that Thought Leadership is critical for the success of not only individuals, organizations, but countries and innovation is the core issue. In the next post I will look at what an organization has done to not only lift its Thought Leadership within in its membership, its home country, but internationally.

Jack Taggerty




Technorati Profile

{ 0 comments }

INNOVATIONS IN DECISION MAKING

How do you make tough choices?
Making choices is not easy when the decision has serious consequences both on a personal or business basis – or both! Many decisions have conflicting consequences and it is not easy to choose between options. One of the most used methods both on a personal and business basis is simply to list the Pros and Cons, but the difficulty with this method is that all the Pros and Cons can have a different weighting and these weightings can be different between individuals and organizations.

There are some public organizations that are responsible for advising individuals about making choices. However, they need to look beyond the facts and educating the public to look at how the public make decisions so that they can assist them in the process by providing decision making tools as well as the technical tools.

Over the coming months I will look at the issue of decision making and where you can find tools to help with the process of decision making.

Jack Taggerty

{ 0 comments }

INNOVATION AND BUSINESS PROCESS IMPROVEMENT

Do the best ideas come from visionary policy or from process improvement?

I remember a very wise change management specialist telling me that if you wanted to introduce process improvement and an innovation program into an organization with a dominant leader don’t tell him his policies are wrong. He advised me not to say anything until I had figured out how to recommend that the change should be a change in process not policy. He was a very wise man because I have seen many submissions to make much needed changes to policy rejected because they had not been disguised as a process improvement.

Many ideas for improvement come from people working in the field on a day to day basis and are very familiar with the work on an operational basis. However, there are substantial arguments that business process improvement should radically change the way an organization operates. It is sensible that business process improvement should align with corporate goals or even industry goals.

Business Process Improvement

This is what the writers at Wikipedia wrote on the subject:

Quote
Overview

The organization may be a for-profit business, a non-profit organization, a government agency, or any other ongoing concern. Most BPI techniques were developed and refined in the manufacturing era, though many of the methodologies (like Six Sigma) have been successfully adapted to work in the predominantly service-based economy of today. While there are differences in the challenges that each type of industry poses, the fact remains that the core principles of BPI and how they apply to business improvement remain portable across industries and functions.
It should be noted that BPI focuses on “doing things right” more than it does on “doing the right thing”. In essence, BPI attempts to reduce variation and/or wastage in processes, so that the desired outcome can be achieved with better utilisation of resources.
BPI works by:
• Defining the organization’s strategic goals and purposes (Who are we, what do we do, and why do we do it?)
• Determining the organization’s customers (or stakeholders) (Who do we serve?)
• Aligning the business processes to realize the organization’s goals (How do we do it better?)
The goal of BPI is a radical change in the performance of an organization, rather than a series of incremental changes (compare TQM). Michael Hammer and James Champy popularized this radical model in their book ‘’Reengineering the Corporation: A Manifesto for Business Revolution’’ (1993). Hammer and Champy stated that the process was not meant to impose trivial changes, such as 10 percent improvements or 20 percent cost reductions, but was meant to be revolutionary (see breakthrough solution).
Unfortunately, many businesses in the 1990s used the phrase “reengineering” as a euphemism for layoffs. Other organizations did not make radical changes in their business processes and did not make significant gains, and, therefore, wrote the process off as a failure. Yet, others have found that BPI is a valuable tool in a process of gradual change to a business.
[edit] BPI: Key Considerations
Processes need to align to Business Goals An organization’s strategic goals should provide the key direction for any Business Process Improvement exercise. This alignment can be brought about by integrating programs like Balanced Scorecard to the BPI initiative. e.g. When deploying Six Sigma, identification of projects can be done on the basis of how they fit into the Balanced Scorecard agenda of the organization.
Customer Focus Fast-changing customer needs underscore the importance of aligning business processes to achieve higher customer satisfication. It is imperative in any BPI exercise that the “Voice of Customer” be known, and factored in, when reviewing or redesigning any process.
Importance of Benchmarks BPI tools place a lot of emphasis on “measurable results”. Accordingly, benchmarks assume an important role in any BPI initiative. Depending on the lifecycle of the process in question, benchmarks may be internal (within the organization), external (from other competing / noncompeting organizations) or dictated by the senior management of the organization as an aspirational target.
Establish Process Owners For any process to be controllable, it is essential that there be clarity on who is the process owners, and what constitutes success/failure of the process. These success/failure levels also help establish “control limits” for the process, and provide a healthy check on whether or not a process is meeting the desired customer objectives.
[edit] Methodology of BPI• Carrying out BPI is a project, so all principles of project management apply.
• The first step in BPI is to define the existing structure and process at play (AS-IS).
• Then, the BPI process owners should determine what outcomes would add value to the organization’s objectives and how best to align its processes to achieve those outcomes (TO-BE).
• Once the outcomes are determined, the organization’s work force needs to be re-organized to meet the new objectives, using the variety of tools available within the BPI methodology.
Rummler-Brache Methodology
Geary Rummler and Alan Brache defined a comprehensive approach to organizing companies around processes, managing and measuring processes and redefining processes in their 1990 book, Improving Processes. This is probably the best known, systematic approach to business process change and ideas first introduced in this book have been very influential on other, less comprehensive approaches. This book draws heavily from the basic approach laid out in Improving Processes.
[edit] Implementing BPI
Most resistance to BPI comes from within an organization. Managers often do not wish to change existing structures. The labor force may resist BPI because of fears of layoffs; however, an organization using BPI on a regular basis, argue many proponents, will already have the proper work force to meet existing business challenges.
Some organizations have implemented BPI on a smaller scale and reported success, by doing the following:
• Start with a small process that can be completed in a short time frame.
• Set clear timelines.
• Do not spread resources thinly and focus on the short term payoff.
• Management and primary stakeholders must be involved, or else even a limited implem [edit] See
Unquote

Business Process Improvement and Customer Focus

It would at first glance that it would not be easy to focus on process and the customer at the same time. This is because business process improvement is often focused on the tight control of how process is managed so that the result can be measured. This is not to say that customer dissatisfaction can not be defined as a process fault, measured and the cause of the dissatisfaction addressed. This is in line with the Six Sigma approach

Many large companies have adopted Six Sigma approaches to improving quality control and cost reduction. There is an extensive methodology and implementation roles for Six Sigma. There is further information on Six Sigma at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Sigma.

Process improvement should be an essential part of any businesses strategic plan along with an innovation program It is hard to believe that businesses can operate today without some clear structure for process improvement and innovation program, but this does happen not only with some companies, but also the industries themselves. This can defy logic, but it is often the cause can be found in the culture of the company or industry.

Managing in tough times that arrive with a recession often requires a refocusing on process improvement and innovation. Many businesses that do not do this will not survive.

Does Six Sigma methods stifle creativity?

If you were to complete a search on Google regarding this issue you would find many articles. One of the most interesting articles is the one where Business Week reported that Jack McNerney introduced Six Sigma methods into 3M when he transferred from General Electric and increased the share price and bottom line performance, but when he left four and a half years later he also left a legacy of people wondering whether the corporate culture of innovation had remained strong. The 3M company had a proud history and culture of innovation. The full article in Business Week can be read at Business Week article June 11, 2007 “At 3M, A struggle between efficiency and creativity”

I believe that creativity and innovation can be fostered in an organization that had embraced Six Sigma or other similar approaches to becoming more efficient. I have worked in an operational environment in the banking industry where reducing costs was a key issue as well as the need to be creative in finding solutions to problems. We used the Kepner-Tregoe approach to many situations where the use of problem analysis and situation appraisal encouraged creative solutions to problems.

For many people, businesses and countries the arrival of a significant global recession will see innovation and productivity come to the fore as people struggle to manage in tough times.

Jack Taggerty

{ 0 comments }

ENTREPRENEURS AND INTERNET INNOVATIONS

Are entrepreneurs and innovations on the internet helping change the financial basis of retirement for the baby boomer generation?
It hasn’t happened overnight and it wasn’t exactly planned, but clearly the internet has become more user friendly to the average citizen. In fact, the evolution of websites to blogs was partly caused by the fact that html code and establishing a website was not particularly user friendly. Now, blogs are readily accessible to anyone with modest computer and internet skills. Establishing a blog is now so simple it can be done by school children in five minutes. The blogosphere was reported as having over 112.8 million English language blogs at last count by the Blog Herald, but this does not count the 72 million Chinese blogs and blogs in other languages. A lot of the changes that have made this possible have been completed by entrepreneurs.

Now, that anyone with modest computer skills and knowledge of the internet has the ability to make money on the internet to supplement their income. However, this is not easy and you need to be taught how to do this and to watch out for fraud.

Innovations on the internet can help retirees overcome financial problems

There are internet millionaires, but the vast majority of people who try to make money on the internet and succeed only to generate supplementary income. This can make the difference between financial hardship and being moderately comfortable financially. If you choose this route it is something that will have to be worked at because it is not a quick fix and there is a substantial learning curve. You also need to do your homework and follow a reputable system with appropriate support.

To be internet smart you need to be aware that there is a high level of internet fraud and you have to be able to sort out what is genuine

Governments are supporting internet users by providing information about fraud. It is worth quoting the United States Department of Justice website as to what is internet fraud:

Quote

What Is Internet Fraud?
The term “Internet fraud” refers generally to any type of fraud scheme that uses one or more components of the Internet – such as chat rooms, e-mail, message boards, or Web sites – to present fraudulent solicitations to prospective victims, to conduct fraudulent transactions, or to transmit the proceeds of fraud to financial institutions or to other connected with the scheme.
If you use the Internet with any frequency, you’ll soon see that people and things online tend to move, as the saying goes, on “Internet time.” For most people, that phrase simply means that things seem to happen more quickly on the Internet — business decisions, information-searching, personal interactions, to name a few – and to happen before, during, or after ordinary “bricks-and-mortar” business hours.
Unfortunately, people who engage in fraud often operate in “Internet time” as well. They seek to take advantage of the Internet’s unique capabilities — for example, by sending e-mail messages worldwide in seconds, or posting Web site information that is readily accessible from anywhere in the world – to carry out various types of fraudulent schemes more quickly than was possible with many fraud schemes in the past.
Unquote

It is worth visiting the website of the United States Department of Justice to read the information on internet crime. The link is :United States Department of Justice. Other links of interest are :Internet Crime Complaint Centre and Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The United States Department of Justice website has substantial information about internet fraud that is also worth following up when you are doing your research.

Over the coming months I will complete further posts on this subject as it is important to understand the scams and traps. It is very easy to be misled and being forewarned can save you money and time.

Jack Taggerty

{ 0 comments }

REINVENTING RETIREMENT

Necessity is the mother of invention

 

Throughout the world the global financial crisis has many people reconsidering whether they can afford to retire.  However, there are also those that have retired who have suddenly discovered that the capital invested in their own income stream can no longer fund their existing level of income without a substantial reduction in the term of their own pension.

 

Financial planners are wondering whether have made errors in the mix of the types of assets that are invested to align with the risk profiles of their clients.  The financial planners are receiving numerous telephone calls from their worried clients who are concerned with the drop in the value of assets backing their pensions or their non pension related investments.  It is if there is a wildfire burning through their life savings.

 

This is not unique to any country as it is a world wide occurrence.

 

Is a new way of looking at financial risk management required?

 

For many retirees who are homeowners who have been trapped by this financial crisis there will come the realization that they will need to change the way they manage financial risk in retirement.  This may also require a reinvention of retirement and what it means to their finances.

 

Over the coming months I will look at this issue and what people can do to reinvent retirement and rescue their finances along the way.

 

Jack Taggerty


{ 0 comments }

MAKING TOUGH DECISIONS IN TOUGH TIMES

Making Tough Decision in Tough Times

 

Good decisions don’t just happen they result from a process and smart leaders of organizations know that this is the case.  If you are faced with tough decisions that can make or break your business during a recession it is wise to invest the time to go through a formal decision analysis process rather than risk the consequences of making a wrong decision.  You can either do this yourself or hire someone to do this for you.

 

One of the frequent issues during a recession is whether to make staff redundant as your business contracts or to reduce their hours or rate of pay so that you can retain good loyal staff for when the recovery occurs.

 

This is one of the toughest decisions that many business owners and directors will be facing over the coming months and years.

 

Choose a decision analysis process that has stood the test of time

 

In July 2008 Kepner-Tregoe celebrated 50 years of corporate problem solving innovation.  This is the decision analysis process that I am familiar with as I have completed their training course and successfully used the decision analysis process on an operational basis.  Over the past 50 years Kepner-Tregoe have worked with most of the Fortune 1000 companies and have offices around the world.  However, there are other companies and other decision analysis methods, but this one has stood the test of time because it works.

 

Over the coming months I will look more closely at the decision analysis process and how it can help managers with tough decisions in a recession.

 

Jack Taggerty


{ 0 comments }