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Archive: October 2013

The "Good Jobs Strategy"

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 9 months and 16 days ago

good jobs strategy

Consumers can help the economy not by just choosing to buy goods, but also by being selective in where they buy goods. Zeynep Ton, Adjunct Associate Professor of Operations Management at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, urged the more than 650 attendees of TedxCambridge, to shop, dine, and patronize businesses that employ what Ton calls the "good jobs strategy."

Ton argued that bad jobs—such as many low-paying positions in retail—contribute to a bad economy. "The problem is not that there aren’t enough jobs; the problem is that too many jobs are simply bad jobs," said Ton. Retail jobs, according to Ton, are not just bad because they offer low wages and chaotic schedules, but because they make the workers feel meaningless. One retailer worker told Ton, "We are throwaways who are a dime a dozen…just human robots, really."

Conventional wisdom says that retailers must pay low wages and offer bad jobs in order to keep prices low. Ton's good jobs strategy goes against this by presenting a case for investing in retail employees, and, in turn, receiving a strong return on that investment. It calls for retailers to make decisions that may seem counterintuitive.

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Mobile money on the rise

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 9 months and 17 days ago

While the developed world continues trudging through a slow economic recovery, parts of the developing world’s economy are being rapidly transformed by a new form of disruptive technology: mobile money. Mobile money—a cash management service available on mobile phones or the internet—is having more than a moment; it’s making a profound impact, powerful enough to shift economies across country borders. Studying the impact of mobile money in its most successful beta launch to date in Kenya can teach us a lot about the impact and adoption of disruptive innovations within a country and beyond its borders. 

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The design structure matrix: helping to see complexity in systems

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 9 months and 26 days ago

Many global business organizations develop and manage complex systems with multiple interacting parts. In an effort to become more effective, efficient, and profitable in the face of growing complexity, businesses seek process innovations that help them streamline their systems. Perhaps that’s why the design structure matrix (DSM), originally developed in the 1970s to model design problems and used at MIT since the 1990s to research system complexity, has become a powerful tool for developing products and systems.

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EmTech 2013 day three: Climates of yes

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 9 months and 30 days ago

Guest Blogger: Doña Keating is President and CEO of Professional Options, a prominent innovator in the leadership, policy and management consulting industry which provides solutions for businesses, organizations and governmental agencies.

I am officially addicted to EmTechMIT. Since returning to the left coast from last week’s event, every neuron in my body is firing from a reconnection to one of the ultimate “Climates of Yes."

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EmTechMIT 2013, day 2: Not all genius is simplicity

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 10 months and 3 days ago

Steve Case, Chairman and CEO of Revolution, Cofounder of America Online, and Chairman of the Case Foundation, set the tone for day two of EmTech 2013 with a dynamic, informative, and savvy discussion about public policy and the intrinsic role it plays in a burgeoning and technologically innovative economy. Unlike the sometimes brash Silicon Valley titans who believed they could rocket to success without being beholden to Big Brother, Case encouraged constructive engagement with what is typically a successful startup's biggest customer: the government. Quoting an African proverb, "If you want to go quickly, go alone; but if you want to go farther, go together," Steve further emphasized policy's value in setting ground rules that allow entrepreneurship and innovation to flourish.

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EmTech 2013 day one: Futures of hope

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 10 months and 4 days ago

It’s hard not to love Cambridge and the greater Boston area. An elegant skyline draping itself across the Charles River, surrounded by world class academic institutions. A highly innovative, collaborative, and solutions-driven climate which promises refinement and an irreverent insistence that the world’s problems will be tackled and changed by its inhabitants.

Nay, this is not a Frommer’s testimonial, but a prelude to my hearty endorsement of EmTech 2013, day one.

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Mapping collective intelligence to design winning organizations

Posted by MIT Sloan Executive Education - 3 years and 10 months and 6 days ago

It’s likely you’ve heard of collective intelligence, the term used broadly to refer to groups of individuals doing things collectively that seem intelligent. The most well-known examples of collective intelligence in action are Google and Wikipedia—large, loosely organized groups of people working together in a rapid transfer information stream. What many organizations don’t know—but could benefit from—is the use of mapping collective intelligence to dissect and better understand their people, processes, and sources of inefficiency and, in some cases, to create a structure to improve business innovation.

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