Archive for the ‘Competition’ Category

Limits of Patience

Should we meet on Google, Teams or Zoom?  Do you have access to a Google drive, or Box, or the Cloud?  Are you on Windows or Mac?  Which version of Windows or the Mac OS?  Which version of Chrome, Explorer or Safari are you using?  These questions are akin to asking me which cell phone […]

Value Destruction

Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook, now Meta, and Elon Musk at Twitter are in the process of destroying the value created by their formerly immensely successful enterprises.  A recent Economist (November 3rd) outlines their misadventures, arguing that their conglomerative aspirations have set the stage for overreach.  Zuckerberg is trying to move beyond the original vision, while […]

Perspectives on Humans and Society

I recently read Ben Wiker’s treatise 10 Books That Screwed Up the World: And 5 Others that Didn’t Help (Regnery, 2008).  He chronicles the thoughts, writings, and impacts of Karl Marx, Charles Darwin, John Mill, Friedrich Nietzsche, Vladimir Lenin, Margaret Sanger, Simon Freud, Margaret Mead, Adolph Hitler and Alfred Kinsey.  Often, these luminaries’ hallmark books […]

Two Countries

I recently read Ezra Klein’s Why We’re Polarized (Simon & Schuster, 2021).  He provides a profound analysis of identity politics, ranging from white supremacy to the politics of rage.  He provides suggested “corrections” that might ease this tension. However, consider another scenario.  The 25 states supporting Donald Trump in 2016 and 2020 agree to become […]

Forces of Greed

I have been reading much history, most recently Ada Ferrer’s Cuba: An American History (Scribner, 2021) for which she won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for History.  She provides a panoramic view of the business of slavery. James DeWolf, a US Senator, was one of the major players in the business of slavery.  Based in Bristol, […]

Winning Ways

What do these three practices have in common? Selling exorbitantly-priced drugs that provide no relative health benefits, but one cannot buy particular patented drugs and devices from other suppliers Producing very expensive weapon systems that may no longer be needed, but one cannot buy these weapon systems and spare parts from other suppliers One cannot […]

Service Hall of Shame – Uber

Roughly a year ago, I profiled five companies that provide great service, for example, Kaiser Permanente and USAA.  This post addresses the flip side – the Service Hall of Shame.  Today’s inductee is Uber.  I have compiled ten reasons for their selection, all experienced in just two days. Let’s start with driver deficiencies.  Here are […]

When the Unpopular Position Is Correct

Most organizations and people like to think that everything is under control, proceeding as planned, and the sought outcomes will be realized.  If anyone suggests otherwise, they will be chastised for not being team players, perhaps for having bad attitudes, or quite simply for being outright wrong.  Unpopular positions are seldom socially acceptable in organizations. […]

When the Competition Surprises You

Consider two surprises for General Motors (GM) and how they reacted, initially poorly but later quite successively.  Both illustrations involved Ford surprising GM. The first led to a major failure and the second to a substantial success.  Indeed, failures to achieve corporate objectives are quite common in the automobile industry.  Not every vehicle is a […]

When the Organization Is in the Way

There are times when organizations are performing excellently but, despite their confidence, their futures are not bright.  Kodak and Polaroid dominated the film and instant photography industries, respectively.  My mother inherited a quantity of Kodak stock in the 1930s.  It provided generous returns for several decades.  People would always seek “Kodak moments” and needed a […]