Forbes List of Top Agribusiness Startups
Got an udder infection? EIO Diagonistics uses iPad software that can detect it automatically. This and many more examples are highlighted in Forbes Magzine's top 25 most innovation AgTech companies. Other examples include oil seed from an heretofore unknown plant and neighborhood indoor farms:
Terviva: An Oakland-based company that is cultivating the pongamia tree, which is native to Australia and India, in Florida, California and Hawaii. The trees produce an oilseed with 10 times more yield than soybeans and have the potential to create a biofuel alternative. Ag cred: Startup has raised more than $20 million.
Plenty: Plenty is an indoor farming company utilizing machine learning, artificial intelligence and crop science to optimize yields and give produce exactly what it needs to achieve optimal freshness and taste.
The tech applications of IoT, robotics, machine learning, sensors, and AI is now growing in the warp and weft of our economy fabric. Forget Facebook, Uber, Houzz, Pinterest. This is the new territory for jobs. Perhaps a dual major in biology and computer science?
Looking for jobs in the new IoT economy? This handy chart on Firstmark Capital's blog and on Techcrunch provides a pretty comprehensive starter list!
Matt Turck | 12.02.14 The Internet Of Things Is Reaching Escape VelocityBy Matt TurckThe frenzy around the Internet of Things (IoT) should be reaching its final countdown.
There has been a period of extraordinary activity in the IoT space since this original attempt at charting the ecosystem for TechCrunch.
See the actual interactive chart at FirstMarkCapital's blogsite. You can click-through to the website of every company's logo
C Is For Silly: The New C-Suite Titles
by Genna Goudreau
Excerpt: ...Peter Cappelli, management professor at the University of Pennsylvania, says the new titles are meant to signal—internally, to customers or to governments—that a particular function or task is important and that the people at the top are listening. They may also be a form of ego appeasing and identifying who the important senior people are. “The main question,” he says, “is whether there’s any real substance behind them.”...
Read full article here.
Do Won Chang (Hangul: 장도원) is an American businessman of Korean descent. He is best known for founding the clothing retail store Forever 21.
Chang grew up in South Korea and moved to California at 18 in 1981. He and his wife, Jin Sook (Hangul: 진숙), opened a clothing store then named Fashion 21 in 1984 in Highland Park, Los Angeles. His store took off and as he expanded to other locations, the store's name was changed to its current title Forever 21. The number of stores grew to 457 by 2010. The company has since remained a family operation. Forbes in 2011 estimated Chang and his wife's net worth to be $2.2 billion.
What the article does not emphasie is that we the participants deliver the media with comments.
What Facebook Will Look Like by 2024
by Todd Wasserman, Mashable.com
Online empires come and go. At one time, Alta Vista was the top search engine and Netscape was the only web browser. Both are now gone. Will the same happen to Facebook?
It's unlikely the company could completely exit the stage. However, the Facebook of 2024 will look very different from today's version. Primarily, the company will continue to morph from a social network to a more traditional media company.
read full article here
Start thinking about how you can transform your boring white papers into image-driven 200+ slide decks. Not many people are priinting out documents to read today when it is far quicker and easier to graze the information on your tablet or smart phone. Hence, the movement towards succinct delivery of information with images.
Start rethinking your next boring 3 bullet powerpoint slide presentation. Re work it into a smal visual ebook instead.
Or would you rather read formatted as an article?
Note each sentence is a slide so instead of a short article you get to zip through a fun and interesting 70 slide deck.
Launching a Career Comback, Linkedin Blog Post
How to Rock the Perfect LinkedIn Profile from LinkedIn
Matt Henshaw June 11, 2014
Hello, I’m Matt Henshaw and (like the beautiful Slideshare above shows) I launched a successful career comeback.
What does that actually mean? Well, a little while ago, I realised I was doing a job that was not my dream. So I decided to make a change and follow my dream – to become a singer-songwriter and self-sufficient working musician, like I said, my very own career comeback. Here’s my story and how LinkedIn played a part in it.
From my time at school to the end of 2008, I was in a band called Censored. What started as a few lads from Nottingham messing about soon became serious.
It was a great time – we were even supporting our music heroes, bands like Supergrass and Ocean Colour Scene. And hanging out with the likes of the Kaiser Chiefs and the Arctic Monkeys – what could possibly go wrong?
I suppose I never really thought about the future and without any real guidance, we took on too much and spread ourselves too thin. I got burnt out and had to cancel gigs and festivals. Sometimes when you lose momentum, you don’t find it again.
I was in touching distance of my dream career – then it was suddenly over.
Skip to 2012, I was working as a Computer Science Sustainability Research Assistant – try saying that with your mouth full! It was OK, it paid the bills but it wasn’t my dream.
Then I went to watch some music gigs for the first time in a long time. The Stone Roses had reformed and Jack White was playing solo shows with all the joy and freedom that goes with it. And that’s when it hit me – I’m one of these people, I’m a musician, that’s MY dream! I had to get back in. But the music landscape had changed since 2008. And it hadn’t exactly gone well last time.
That’s where LinkedIn came in. I thought if this can work for office stuff why not music as well? I wanted to showcase my passion, my personality and make sure people took me seriously as a professional – not just another lad with a guitar.
After updating my profile, I soon found endorsements rolling in from my old network backing my music skills. It was a massive confidence boost. Then I found people started coming to me! For gigs, festivals and just putting stuff together in the recording studio. My profile was like a magnet – all because I had added a bit more detail.
I now have a gig at the Camden Roundhouse and the Elevator Music Festival.
You may be thinking “good for him but I don’t want to be a musician”. Well, that’s not my point.
Whether you’re a musician, a lawyer, a scientist or an accountant you can always do better. LinkedIn is for anyone with ambition. It’s not going to magically make things happen for you, but if you want to follow your dream then investing in your profile and having LinkedIn in your corner can only help. LinkedIn played its part for me and it can for you.
What’s your dream?
Peace, Love & Tea, MHx
PS. If you like my Slideshare, why not share it on
It will be interesting to watch Zillow's entry into China with the US housing market site translated into Chinese. There is the expectation of a flood of wealthy investors from China rushing into all US markets. This seems to be a spread across the globe of wealth control by the few.
When the country was first founded only property owners could vote and everyone else was disenfranchised. Are we moving to a new kind of public disenfranchisement? With years of student debt upon graduation, diminished opportunity to own a home which represents financial stability, and no job security, are we passing on a future devoid of opportunity for the next generations?
Families Blocked by Investors From Buying U.S. Homes
By Kathleen M. Howley - Oct 24, 2013 7:10 AM PT
The homeownership rate declined to 65 percent in the first half of this year from a peak of 69.2 percent in June 2004. The level is expected to stabilize at about 63 percent, adding more than 2 million households to the rental population, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Haendel St. Juste.
Pendulum Swings Families are still able to live in single-family homes with a yard for their kids to play in, said Daren Blomquist, a RealtyTrac vice president. However, they’re sending their money to investor-landlords, rather than paying off a mortgage.
“The pendulum is swinging too far from the direction we saw during the run-up to the mortgage crisis,” Blomquist said in an interview. “Then, we tried to make everyone an owner. Now, we have people who have the income to pay a mortgage and have the desire to own a home who are stuck being renters.”
Read the article and view the video here
Rarely do I promote an event especially to global readers. But, this one is cool and will be recorded to watch later from wherever. The news is that companies are going to hire you now based on comprehensive set of data points gathered about you online that are nowhere to be found on your resume.
Forget transferable skills, folks. This is far more comprehensive, intrusive and penetrating into your personality/style, mannerisms, predictable behaviors, competencies/abilities, and unstated accomplishments. None of these are even touched on your resume but they are online.
What if they knew the articles and quotes you shared on social sites? What if they could scrutinize the people you interact with all over the Internet? What impact would that have on how you present yourself for employment opportunities..
The solution? Manage your message and your privacy settings. They will be searching for the most recent information on you.My guess is less than a year and two years max. Start now and build a brand/marketing image/ reputation online that delivers the message you want them read.
Algorithm Alchemy: Turning Talent Search into Gold
Thursday, June 19, 2014
Stanford Graduate School of Business
Knight Management Ctr - Cemex Auditorium, Zambrano Hall
641 Knight Way, Stanford, CA
(Parking and Directions)
6:00 pm – Registration, Networking Reception & Demos
7:00 pm – Panel Discussion (Q&A)
Startups are turning the tables on recruiting with targeted prospecting algorithms. Applicant search is transformed intoprecise talent-matching through the collection and curation of data from numerous sources. The new platforms level the playing field, reshaping the interaction between job seekers, recruiters, and hiring managers.
There is a new gold rush in the global talent acquisition market! According to Bersin by Deloitte, the global talent acquisition market is now worth over $150B annually. While online job boards and aggregators continue to hold the largest slice of the pie, new entrants are poised to take away significant market share.
Join us on Thursday, June 19th to find out how today’s alchemists are exploring new frontiers in the job market, disrupting an industry that has become inefficient and unwieldy:
Alex Dévé, Founder and CEO, Whitetruffle
Sheeroy Desai, Co-founder and CEO, Gild
Steve Krausz, General Partner, U.S. Venture Partners
Readyforce | Venturocket | Whitetruffle
** More panelists and demo companies to be announced soon. Please continue to check back.
** Follow (@VLAB) on Twitter and Event Hashtag #VLABtalent
Well we just couldn't keep calling it mobility as in "mobile phone" when it is all pervasive, ubiquitous, and omnipresent in how we live, do business, and search for meaning.
I know a couple who never use the ATM, and do not own smart phones nor a computer. They have no clue about Facebook, GPS, Yelp, Amazon, and Google. Seriously. I used to call them Luddites, but now I call them Neanderthals. They are about to go extinct.
There is a lot of content noise on the web arguing about the need or ROI of a college degree. While that debate can rage on, I know that there is no debate over the need to have our young people fully wired, connected, and technically savant.
Regardless of training, diploma, or degree if they can't access and fluently use the Internet of Things, they will be unemployable.
INFOGRAPHIC: How The Internet Of Things Connects Everything And Everyone
May 8, 2013, 3:20 PM
In just seven years, there will be anywhere from 24 to 50 billion Internet-connected devices. That's three to 6.5 devices for every man, woman, and child on the planet.
Those devices aren't just PCs, smartphones, and tablets, but also smart watches and eyewear, along with a lot of “things” we don’t usually think of as connected to the Internet: TVs, cars, appliances, shipping containers, and jet engines, to name a few.
We're starting to live more connected lives through these “things.” Consider this example: A woman jogging through a park gets thirsty. She does a voice search on her smartphone for bottled water and is directed to a nearby vending machine, where she buys water using a mobile payment account on her phone.
Sensing its supply is low, the machine alerts the distributor, whose automated supply chain management system adds that machine to the route of a passing delivery truck. Meanwhile, the jogger stops at a grocery store. Based on her recent activity, the beverage company sends a promotion to the jogger’s smartphone. She gets it just as she is deciding what drink to buy.
Check out the infographic below for more ways in which the Internet of Things is changing our personal and corporate lives. And if your company wants to stay ahead of the curve, find out how to take advantage of the mobile technology that's connecting devices by unlocking exclusive content from the Harvard Business Review.
Read more at the site:
It sure can and has been repeated. I have watched Whole Food gentrify an entire locale all buy themselves in less than 6 years. Now that is brand magic! Status by association, indeed.
Who are you networked with? Who are you name dropping in your CV and on your blog? How can you shine in the glow of an other's radiant sun?
There is a lesson to be learned here aside from eating organic and free range. If we worked as hard on our brands and reputations as Whole Foods has then people would want to hang by with us too, and even hire us.
Can the Whole Foods Effect Be Repeated?
By Kriston Capps
Urban-issues columnist Will Doig tackles the so-called Whole Foods Effect in a Salon story about development in Detroit—and well, development in every city that’s seen significant gentrification in the last decade or so. Detroit is the latest—following Washington, D.C., in 2000, Pittsburgh in 2002, and Boston last year—to see a neighborhood jolt following the announcement of the arrival of a Whole Foods.
In Detroit, developers are betting big that the Whole Foods Effect will transform Midtown—$4.2 million big, Doig reports. “That figure suggests city leaders believe that Whole Foods is a force unto itself that can give a neighborhood the escape velocity it needs to break free of its doldrums,” he says, and then asks: “Are they right?”
Doig writes that Whole Foods occupies a unique position in the food-market eco-system: It’s a debt-free company with 50 new stores coming online. Businesses piggyback off of Whole Foods’s advance work: The company looks for neighborhood areas with 200,000 people (a college-educated set at that) living within a 20-minute-drive radius. That may be Whole Foods’s greatest signal to developers and businesses: They’ve done the math so you don’t have to.
The numbers bear out, Doig writes:
An exhaustive 2007 study by Johnson Reid quantified the effects that individual urban amenities have on home prices. Using hedonic modeling, it found that a specialty grocer will increase surrounding home prices by an average of 17.5 percent, more than bookstores, bike shops or gyms (with the caveat, of course, that this varies greatly depending on the situation — in the instances studied, the increases ranged widely from 6 to 29 percent).
Then he digs into the effect it’s had on D.C.’s Logan Circle neighborhood (which is a stone’s throw from ARCHITECT’s offices):
When Whole Foods moved onto P Street in Washington, D.C., 13 years ago, the only nightlife on the block was a divey (and awesome) rock club called the Vegas Lounge. The Lounge is still there, but it’s since been joined by a popular burger joint called Stoney’s, a “food-to-fork” locavore restaurant called Logan Tavern that owns a farm 30 miles south of the city, a Starbucks (open till 8 p.m.), a coffeehouse-slash-bar called Commissary and several retail stores, all squeezed onto the same block as Whole Foods.
His D.C. example raises a couple of salient points. One big plus to the P Street N.W. Whole Foods is its design: Its parking lot is small and underground, as it was clearly meant to fit into the neighborhood, not replace a big chunk of it. Many of the Whole Foods throughout the U.S. Northeast, in fact, are designed to encourage walkable communities. Other grocery stores in D.C. looked like the original Whole Foods in Austin, Texas—that is, a stand-alone, big-box grocer with a great deal of its footprint set aside for parking. When the D.C. Whole Foods opened it 2000, it was the only grocery store signaling urban density at the time.
Back then, Whole Foods was also one of relatively few grocery stores serving D.C. at all. A Safeway store popularly known as the Soviet Safeway—so named for its frequent shortages—was then the closest grocery store, and that one was a neighborhood away. It’s hard to say whether the Whole Foods Effect is the function of a singular urban-organic-brand signaling, or if Whole Foods is just a savvy company identifying niches in the marketplace.
Doig puts this question another way: “Could a Safeway gentrify a neighborhood like Midtown Detroit? Could a Wal-Mart?” Doig says no—but Safeway and Wal-Mart want this answer to be yes. Wal-Mart is opening six new stores in D.C., and the preliminary designs that the company has released for its first foray into the capital look nothing at all like their sprawling cousins in the suburbs. They look like Whole Foods. Chains such as Safeway and Giant are updating their brands to follow; a popular Giant a mile or two up the road from the Logan Circle Whole Foods is known widely as the Gentrification Giant—because it appears to have contributed to (or to have benefited from) the sort of growth that the Whole Foods Effect describes.
One thing is clear: When it comes to big-store grocers spurring urban growth, Whole Foods has won the first-mover advantage.
Here is the source of this article
Anyone who thinks they should wait and see how things progress will be left behind in the dust of societal, economic, cultural, and political change. The job you will have tomorrow may be in an industry that is just being born today. The products, markets and companies of next month and next year may not have existed 6 years ago. Facebook opened its site to the general public just six years ago.
This article is a great testimonial to the power of change driven by technology. Now in YouTube stars are born, serious money is made, and the global economy feels more and more like a neighborhood.
A decade ago the record industry’s gears clicked along more or less as they always had: Labels signed up promising acts discovered by A&R scouts, paid those acts advances against future music sales, and hawked that music through a sprawling network of radio programmers and retailers. Today, with album sales continuing to plummet—in 2004, 666.7 million albums were sold; by 2012 that number was down more than 50 percent, to 316 million—labels and artists depend more than ever on touring and merchandise for revenue. Songs are ads meant to help sell tickets and T-shirts, and YouTube is beginning to rival radio when it comes to breaking those tracks. Recognizing this, the trade magazine Billboardrecently overhauled its formula for determining the most popular music in the country, giving YouTube plays more weight. The following week, Harlem Shake topped the Hot 100 chart—the first instrumental track to do so since Jan Hammer’s Miami Vice theme in 1984. Five weeks later, it was still there.
Read more at Bloomberg BusinessWeek
If you can’t get into a top-five MBA program, don’t even bother
By Jay Bhatti — January 15, 2013 Jay Bhatti is an investor and advisor to startups in New York City. Previously, he was the co-founder of the people search engine Spock.com. He also worked as a product manager for Microsoft. In 2002, he received his MBA from the Wharton School. Read more.
The extent of his understanding about MBA is limited by his elitist world view. His main complaints are:
So, why get an MBA? For the network. Yes, the network. Example, UCLA is not in Jay's top five but it has over 30,000 alumni out there to help you with introductions, resources, access to opportunities, and career advice. That network doesn't become obsolete over time, better still, it keep on growing. You are buying a built in database of connections better than whatever Linkedin can do for you. Your fellow alumni are all invested in your success as much as their own as you will reflect back well upon them and the alma mater.
How should you pick the MBA school? By the numbers. How many total graduates are there? How many in the geographical area of your preference. Example, most UCLA MBA alumni are in Southern California. How many are in the field or industry of your preference? Some schools are known for finance and accounting vs marketing and management.
Do not pick an online school and degree as there is not enough connection and loyalty to the school to be good for networking. Pick a big enough school so that you have ample selection. Example, my degree from JFK University in Career Development was so small and niched that I practically know everybody in the alumni pool.
Is an MBA worth it? If you want a career in business, yes, as a bachelor's degree is now the equivalent of a high school diploma for entry into the world of work.
This is a new twist. I have been saying for several years now that recruiters and hiring managers are looking in Linkedin first for potential hires and then Google searches. They bypass resume searches out of their own website databases in favor of prowling through online profiles.
Now some HR experts, notably the esteemed Dr. John Sullivan, have realized to require an employee to submit someone's resume to make an employee referral is a really dumb idea. And he tells you in this article all the good reasons why.
Time to just burn that resume and build a professional website instead? I think so.
Why “Name-only” Employee Referrals Produce Dramatic Results
by Dr. John Sullivan Oct 29, 2012, 5:42 am ET
Employee referrals provide the highest quality and the highest volume of hires, but you won’t receive as high a level of results if you don’t minimize roadblocks to referrals. Requiring a current resume for employee referrals is a major “under-the-radar” detriment to reaching the goal of having referrals exceed 50% of all hires.
Requiring a resume to start a referral process might not seem like a big deal (because the resume is “the currency” of recruiting) but it can be. Although “active candidates” all have current resumes, employed people who are not actively looking (some people call thempassives) don’t have an updated resume available and they may have little interest in creating one.
Requiring an updated resume in order to move forward slows down and occasionally stops employee referral efforts. Consider an alternative approach, which is offering an option to employees, so that all they must submit is a prospect’s name and contact information in order to begin the referral process. This approach is known as a “name-only” referral.
You do the math: 150 thought leaders is far less than 1% of its 175 million members.
LinkedIn Rolls Out Redesigned Profiles, 'Thought Leader' Feature
By Damon Poeter
October 16, 2012
LinkedIn also introduced a new feature for users with the redesign--the ability to follow 150 of "the world's most respected thought leaders" (pictured above). The company called the addition of a "follow" mechanism, which allows users to keep up with this select group of individuals, "a natural extension" of existing tools for following companies and news feeds, but said it had no current plans to monetize the new feature.
Linkedin has decided for us who these people are. They will be expanding the list and add people who are experts in their field. You can apply at http://partner.linkedin.com/influencer/
Linkedin is doing a one-off from the Google+ style of posts where we can freely put anybody in our circles and follow them and comment on their posts. Linkedin has artificially set-up 150 follows with the same intention. But, how can millions of us get any kind of visibility with a Thought Leader to have a conversation?
There has always been a huge culture difference between Linkedin and Google+. Linkedin is very template-driven, structured and rule bound while Google offers the, "I'm feeling lucky" feature for search. Google Circles and Follows have grown organically from the bottom up while Linkedin Thought Leader Follows are obviously trickling down.
What do you think of the Linkedin Thought Leader Follows? Do you have a problem with being provided a highly controlled and limited list of chosen elites?
Follow me on Google+
It is interesting to note that drops in the equity markets and general economic crashes have generally occurred in the Fall. Even though the US economy has done a yeoman's job of pulling itself back from the abyss, it doesn't mean we won't be dragged over the cliff by the rest of the world.
This certainly makes the tech sector the brightest star in the night heavens compared to other employment sectors. Consumer electronics is a cheap thrill compared to buying a new car. And tech devices and Cloud computing are productivity tools that impact the bottom line when growing revenues doesn't.
We aren't out of this mess yet.
from the Globe and Mail article
The Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Oct. 09 2012, 7:48 PM EDT
Last updated Wednesday, Oct. 10 2012, 6:34 AM EDT
The rest of the world is ratcheting up already intense pressure on Washington and Brussels to head off another global economic crisis, as the outlook grows ever dimmer.
The gravest threats to the increasingly fragile recovery lie in a divided United States and a wounded euro zone, according to the growing chorus of voices that are urging governments to act quickly and decisively to deal with crippling debt and fiscal problems.
ResumUp is a new tool that is a graphically social based view of your experience and talents. Whew, graphically-social based, now that's a mouth full. But how do you describe the new image driven content style of cloud apps coming up online now?
It is an interesting concept and of course it remains to be seen how they will monetize this but I like the look. Hint, sign up using your Linkedin profile not Facebook as it populates the data fields from the site you choose. I am not sure I would want a future employer to take a look at my credentials presented in this fashion. However, the resume is a dying breed we need to stay ahead of the curve and manipulate these tools to our advantage.
If you want to sign-up for the free best click here.
Business Insider has 23 examples of cool resumes using Instagram, the image-based website that Facebook just bought for $1 billion. They said in their intro:
It seems like a boring black and white resume won't get you very far anymore. Inspired by 7 cool resumes we found on Pinterest, we scoured Instagram for some more. Here are the most creative resumes we found. View all 23 here
Some of the examples are stunning, others quirky, and all are young...very young. This really can work for you if you are under 30 and fighting for visibility in this very tough job market for early professionals. Certainly it can give anyone in the creative arts, digital media, and technology an extra edge and opportunity to showcase their talents.
But will Instagram and Pinterest work for mid-career experienced professionals and senior executives? A qualified yes.
It depends on the sector, the role and position level. In heavy equipment manufacturing at the C-level it would not be advisable. At least not this year. But in consumer packaged goods, fast moving consumer goods, hospitality, sports, recreation, entertainment, consumer electronics, fashion, advertizing, and technology sectors, those sites could well be a differentiating addition to your online branding.
The position is important too. Traditional fields of finance, insurance, risk management, facilities management, for example, don't lend themselves, right now, to this kind of treatment. This kind of personal branding would not be expected nor accepted in more conservative sectors or professions.
With all of the above caveats, in the parade, it is far better to ahead of the elephants and horses than behind. In 2003, when Linkedin launched nobody had ever heard of it let alone wanted to join and connect. Back then it was easy to get thousands of connections (and I did) and now you have to buy them.
My advice is to register your name on Pinterest and Instagram to just hold a place for your profile. Eventually they will become acceptable social sites like linkedin is now and you then can leverage them for online branding.
See all my blogs and website on Pinterest boards . Instagram is next.
We all know by now about very successful launch of The Startup of You by the founder of Linkedin. It has good tips and advice for the Social Generation's job search.
But that's not my point here. I have been mulling the changes that 20 years can make in how we have careers, look for work and create our success.
In 1990, Tom Peter's published in Fast Company, The Brand Called You.
During the past 20+ years, people, with the help of the Internet, have figured out and mastered how to brand, pitch, promote and market themselves to get or stay employed.
Everybody is on Google+, Linkedin, Viadeo, Xing, and FB pages with profiles describing their accomplishments. Many professionals (all my clients) are setting up professional websites, iPad profiles, and even Presumes.
Yes, we have got the branding part down to the point that everyone is sick of hearing the word used. Unfortunately, being well branded, positioned and marketed isn't enough anymore. The Startup of You addresses the really salient career challenges that the Social Generation faces today.
How do you find a job and stay employed in a global marketplace for talent where there aren't enough jobs, the competition is fierce, and everybody is a brand?
Well the message is threefold:
Some reading this may say that this is all old news that is just repackaged. I don't think so. What is interesting to note is the shift in emphasis over 20 years from the sole individual with a brand to a person as part of a collective network.
As we all live digital lives, building a the global village around us to support our career survival has become a most efficacious route.
In an interesting addendum to the article below, I was speaking with a long-time client last night who told me that all the job postings up in Silicon Valley are not as accurate as one might think in the economic boomlet going on here.
Apparently more hires are being done by headhunters outside the company and internal hires inside. The postings are window dressing to satisfy government requirements and to distract competitors. I can't tell you companies names but he got it verified by insiders at former places where he has worked. I double checked and agree.
Why is all the internal hiring happening? Well it's faster, cheaper and, at least in Silicon Valley, the person has been "test driven". Typically anywhere from 20to 60% new hires are contractors. When an regular hire opening comes up, then the company sources internally from its contractor and consultant pool. That's my best guess on this. The other part of using headhunters for outside, well they control the deal flow so a fire hose of applicants isn't engulfing HR. With so much good talent out there looking, they can cherry pick top candidates with much less hassle than the company's staff can.
Here is an excerpt from Peter Capelli's article. He is using his gut, anecdotal, hunching as well!
HR leaders tend to try to push back against the fetish in their corporations to hire from outside instead of promoting from within. A new study offers some evidence to bolster their case.
My editors always say give away the story early on, so the answer is, "no." But it requires a little more background to make the story interesting.
Probably the most important development in corporate life over the last generation or so has been the decline of lifetime careers and the rise of outside hiring. The situation in many businesses now is that, when there is a vacancy, they automatically think about filling vacancies by looking outside. Internal promotions are something of a rarity.
I don't have any hard evidence for this, but my sense from anecdotes is that the outside hiring trend has been driven by CEOs and other top executives who (a) if they were hired from the outside think that is the way to go for other roles as well or (b) seem to have a "grass is greener" view of external candidates, especially those who come from an admired employer.
read more here
This is your new blog post. Click here and start typing, or drag in elements from the top bar.
It is so addictive when surfing around the Internet to identify and click on interesting bits of information, articles, news stories with the little Pinterest Pin It button and post an image and link to one of my Pinterest boards.
Pinterest is a visually, discriminating version of Delicious.com, and Stumbleupon. I pick out a relevant image on the article's page, tag it and attach a brief comment/opinion of my own. I use the image to attract your attention to the information and the article.
I know that's not exactly what Pinterest intended but it works. Most people put up a collage of clothes, artwork, jewelry, photos, fashion, food, travel, movies and music images. You know, lifestyle.
Just look at the Pinterest category list. There is no category for business, the economy, globalization, philosophy, history, politics, careers and jobs, or any of my board titles. Pinterest has self-created its own limitations because it focuses on the image as an end unto itself rather than the means, conduit and connection to an even greater end... the source of the image and attached link.
I connected my Facebook profile to Pinterest so that all my pins post to FB. I have had, in just two days, several people comment and repin a number of pins. Now that is cool because nobody comments on my blog posts, except for the occasional spamer.
Check out my Pinterest boards on Career Tools, Global Economy, Working Wisdom and Culture.
You may get addicted too!
What to do with QR Codes?
By creating your own QR Codes (called "qurifying") you can make whatever you want more interactive.
- Put one on your business card, on flyers for a party or poster to promote your products or services.
- Or use them to help sorting your books or CD's, put them on your keys or tools so you know what they are for.
(from the Qurify website)
So I put this code on my screwdriver and I always know what it's for? Ok, I am having fun. But these QR codes are pretty cool and Qurify has probably the simplest site to use to make codes for use by the executive, professional, solopreneur and small business owner.
What am I talking about?
QR or Quick Response code is a bar code that can be read by an app in your iPhone, Droid or my Blackberry. Putting the code on any real life object enables it to transmit whatever information is embedded in the code. Typically most services limit you to a certain number of characters to embed in a QR code. Qurify said 255 characters but some QR codes hold up to 7000 characters.The code above has my business card information embedded in it. I used all but 37 characters of the 255.
What do you do with them?
Look at them as an interactive bridge between the digital universe and the bricks and mortar world. Put in the QR code information from a v-card, business card, links to Facebook, Linkedin, YouTube, eBook, a resume, and your website. Apply the code to a piece of paper, a card, a flyer, a tee shirt, a book to enable the coder reader to receive extended information about you online or any topic or site you want to send them to..
Is it worth adding to your business card, resume, and other documents?
Sure, why not? You have nothing to lose and much to gain with the increased visibility. I think the best use would be to build a great website and use the QR code on the back of your business card to get networking contacts to the website's landing page. That would be the best brand message delivery compared to sending code readers to linkedin or other template-driven apps and sites. You could offer a special deal on an ebook you have written and use the code to send users to an Amazon.com page to buy it. The applications are endless. Just think of it as the simple little wireless connector between the world and the interweb.
In my universe there is nothing better than leading the pack compared to following the herd when it comes to new and wonderful technology gadgets. QR codes are easy to create, and the uses are limited only by your creativity, strategic vision, and brilliant imagination.
Start with your business card as code.
Younger, thinner, more interesting looking is the new oatmeal look. After 136 years, the Quaker Oats guy logo has been updated to appeal to a new generation of young adults as well as appeal to age-phobic baby boomers. If you compare the two logos, yes the one on the right is the new one, the new one shows an updated font style too that is a brighter white and not "old timey" looking.
According to the Time Magazine article, Quaker Oats owner PepsiCo introduced the changes in an effort to make the brand “fresh and innovative,” which might take a bit of doing, given that their product is a dessicated cereal grain.
You may not be going on 136 years old, but when it comes to staying viable in the global talent marketplace, well then consider an update of your personal brand.
How do you do that? Well it is less the wording in your content which focuses more on branding/rebranding. Rebranding positions you to move into new fields, business sectors, and industries. A brand refresh is gives your current brand a younger, more vibrant, newer, fresher appearance. That is more about image and look. At the warp speed of business and the Internet, a professional look evolves much more rapidly.
Digital Documents in 2012 look different from those in 1998
Well, theoretically they should look different but some professionals are still using resume formats and layouts since before the faxed resume. Resumes, websites, blogs, or social profiles are built now to look great on a screen as that's where they are read. In fact, if you go to the Way Back Machine (Internet Archive) and check out early Linkedin, Amazon, blogs sites, you will see how different and dated they look now.
The fonts now must take into consideration how well a font renders online and on a screen. Just look at the different in readability between the two Quaker Oats logos. Modern sans-serif fonts look younger and fresher. Serif fonts like Palatino render better onscreen than the traditional Times Roman, making for a crisper, fresher look. The layout and design of all documents are moving to a lighter, more open look. Just look at the new Google Blogger with dynamic, open blog that is image focused versus the blog you are reading now.
The older you are, the younger your photo style
Most executives use their photos provided by their company's PR department on Linkedin and for other business requirements. If you are over 50 and not working in government and financial services, this is not a good idea. More stable, traditional business sectors like seeing their executives in suits and business attire as does consulting services. There is a reason for the slang referring to "the suits".
Using photos taken outdoors, in natural light, preferably in business casual will create an image of health, vitality and youth as well. Business formal creates age aura. If you have substantial career credentials and achievements, then you don't need to look the part as well.
Take the photo one step further and be in dressy sports on a wind swept beach with a Golden Retriever. Lacking ocean, use a park and a poodle, or ski slopes, etc. Just don't look too much like you're into extreme sports. Remember how the category "interests" was put at the bottom of your resume and you got to list things like: biking, skiing, marathon running, etc etc? Well, one well done photos creates the better impression of you without the ubiquitous laundry list.
Update your look, wardrobe, and appearance
There is age discrimination and it is subtle, unconscious, and hard to prove when practiced in hiring and firing. In a media marketing driven, consumption based culture, we are manipulated by the image and look of products which are presented with an emphasis on sex, power, fun,and excitement. Yes, we like functional too, but we get sucked in by looks first. Think how many people wear those ergonomically uncomfortable, auditorially poor, and, basically, cheesy Apple iPod earbuds because they look cool and recognizable in white.
A style makeover may not be annually necessary but every five years it is mandatory. This includes product: skin care, hair care, and body maintenance. There is a reason sites like Dermatologistrx is thriving online, and why both men and women no longer consider facial peels and lifts optional. It is not about looking younger which may be hard to archieve, especially after a certain age, but looking fresher, more vibrant and vital.
The Quaker Oats guy looks thinner, healthier, and a bit younger and you should too!
These trends may seem not new to many in the career coaching field or in Silicon Valley but this article does an excellent job of covering and updating the take on these dynamics in global work:
5 Trends Driving the Future of Work
by Chris Jablonski
Summary: From legions of independent consultants to cities dotted with coworking facilities, the future of work is virtual, online and global.
Trend 1: Independent consulting to see hockey-stick growth curve
Trend 2: Order books, movies and now … workers online
Trend 3: Coworking moves beyond early adopter stage
Trend 4: Adaptive lifelong learning the norm
Trend 5: Jobs of the future will either retrofit and blend existing jobs, or solve entirely new problems.
Read more at ZDnet.com,
Yes, we know that the jobs of the future will be different, even with the same title, from what they do now. Who would have thought that a car mechanic would need some computer skills to diagnose and repair the inner mechanics of an automobile 50 years ago? But they do now. Certainly, marketing exists more and more online than off.
Challenge: predict where your job/field/function is going and how going are going to mutate into those changes yourself. One solution includes applying #4 and being continuously learning new skills before you need them.
Coworking suits the Contract Nation USA just fine as more and more of the labor force is on a just-in-time basis. Banding together for company, economy of scale, and collaboration yet remaining independent entities is one very useful technique to survive working as Me Inc.
Challenge: finding the right co-habitation work space with people who create synergies of opportunities and networks with yours. This is more critical than finding your soul mate.
But the article does well in painting in tangible living color brushstrokes just how fast we are moving to that Me Inc. world with the visceral image of the hockey stick. Fan that I am, it also brings to mind the brutality of that game as an apt analogy to the sometimes cutthroat competition for projects and gigs.
Challenge: to differentiate yourself and keep from becoming a commodity price-driven member of a herd of contractors chasing business. This is another place where #4 learning new skills and acquiring new knowledge would help.
We know everything will be online as it seems like most of it is now. Of course recruiters live on Linkedin and deploy Google searches to find talent. Resumes are rapidly becoming obsolete in favor of more copious dossier on you in the interweb. Workers online using the various sites such as guru.com, elance, etc is now the norm.
Challenge: to by-pass the 3rd party brokers that add on 20-30% to your hourly rate and market yourself directly to potential employers making copious use of online branding and marketing. Using a website, blog, social profiles (lots of them), etc, build visibility to promote Me Inc.
Good trend spotting means good responses on all our parts. If we see it coming we can do something about it. Moreover, these trends are global. We compete, work with, network and collaborate across borders, timezones and countries. Opportunities can be anywhere and so can you.
Email me if you want to find out how I can help you be a guru consultant and look like a thought leader online. I have done it for others and can show you how too. firstname.lastname@example.org
The Labor Market Bites Chinese Factories As retention of factory workers becomes a problem for companies in China, wages and benefits are increasing. But employers still face a labor shortage -- and their potential responses to it may have big implications for China and the rest of the world.
By Peter Cappelli the George W. Taylor Professor of Management and director of the Center for Human Resources at The Wharton School.
Read entire article
This fascinating article reiterates some of the themes I have blogged about concerning the global economy. The free market for wages and labor has finally arrived in China. Coming back from Spring Festival, workers are delaying their return to shop around among factories for the highest salary and best perks.
Foxconn, Apple's i-everything manufacturer, has announced wage increases that bring the Chinese factory worker on par with their counterparts in Mexico. This is coming faster than I expected in terms of a rising tide raising all boats (countries) closer to wage parity. And this will eventually budge the USA off the salary sandbar where wages have been moored for more than a decade of steady declines.
Cappelli expresses hope that this turn of events will help usher in modern management practices into China such as employee retention. Wow! I never thought that I would mention that and China in the same sentence. This all bodes well for long term technology manufacturing coming back to the USA with the rising wages and costs of fuel driving that return. Steve Jobs was wrong on that one.
On the other hand, there is a glut of new college grads without employment opportunities as they lack experience and training. They might be potential converts over to factory jobs according to Cappelli. However the increasing number of college grads in China will apply more competitive pressure to that same demographic sector here in the USA.
Once again, this is another action call to new grads in the USA to gain internship experience, add to their portfolio of marketable skills, learn languages and build a career sustainable network to launch them well.
Companies in the USA, especially the big dogs, the global multinationals need to develop immediate contingency plans to secure ongoing stable cost of goods produced including labor costs. Short-term Vietnam, other Asian nations, or Latin America will provide those options. However, long-term might look like North Dakota next to that tar sands oil pipeline.
Fuel and supply chain costs to deliver to markets and cost of labor will be the deal makers or breakers in the next 5 years.
As the saying goes you either have lunch or be lunch. When Kodak filed for bankruptcy restructuring, I wept over my vintage Brownie and played the Kodachrome lyrics by Paul Simon:
You give us those nice bright colors
You give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world's a sunny day, oh yeah!
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photograph
So Mama, don't take my Kodachrome away
What can executives and professionals take-away about from this? Why does a company have talented teams who create bleeding edge products see failure because executive management fails to capitalize on it?
"Through the 1990s, Kodak splurged $4 billion on developing the photo technology inside most of today's cellphones and digital devices. But a reluctance to ease its heavy reliance on film allowed rivals like Canon Inc. and Sony Corp. to rush largely unhindered into the fast-emerging digital arena. The immensely lucrative analog business Kodak worried about undermining too soon was virtually erased in a decade by the filmless photography it invented." This is from an article by Ben Dobbin for Associated Press.
The article went on to quote:
"If you're not willing to cannibalize yourself, others will do it for you," said Mark Zupan, dean of the University of Rochester's business school. "Technology is changing ever more rapidly, the world's becoming more globalized, so to stay at the top of your game is getting increasingly harder." Read more here
Like Kodak, Xerox PARC (now just PARC) invented but never capitalized on the Graphical User Interface that made the personal computer a tool for the masses but Apple did with the Macintosh. Sony and Canon capitalized on Kodak's digital camera breakthroughs. Other sector leaders have met with the same fate such as RIM and AOL. These companies were all market makers yet lost out to the competition by a failure to adapt, transform and innovate.
Certain people have management styles that tend to be risk averse and impede the growth and expansion of the company with a "let's not get ahead of ourselves" attitude. They need too much proof and they take too long to make the right decision in the face of market movements. They lack a capacity to see beyond their self-imposed company rulebook, and, worst of all, they fearfully protect their next quarter profits by keeping dated products alive too long.
When a sector is moving, like the global economy, at the speed of light agility and flexibility are essential skills.
Keeping up is not sufficient when getting ahead is in order.
The same holds true for individuals. We must continually evolve and respond to organizational, market and economic changes. Knowing when to get out and move on is insufficient if you don't do it.
Executives that do not embrace the trends of today will have the marketplace pass them by because of risk averse and dated views regarding their own career advancement.
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