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Insight Papers

In this section, our international executives, interim managers, and executive investors publish their insight papers to share their expert business knowledge with you.

The selection of insight papers (downloadable as PDF free of charge) written by our iCEO™ executives and interim managers gives you a first insight into the level of experience and competence of our certified executives and interim managers through their business testimonials.

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest insight papers published by our international executives and interim managers on a regular basis.

CEO Insight Papers

HOW TO MAKE THE BRAND TURNAROUND ON THE FIRST BIGGEST GLOBAL MARKET AFTER US?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #71718

"Insanity Is Doing the Same Thing Over and Over Again and Expecting Different Results" (Einstein quote). So once you find out what needs to be changed, you need to be radical and drive their implementation, says Nathalie Schneider, our Top Executive of the week. Here you can read her motivating turnaround story. Read more...

MULTICULTURAL AND INTERNATIONAL CHARACTER, AND PRACTICES USED TO FOSTER EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES AND RESPECT FOR DIVERSITY

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #69327

International Organizations have laid down principles, promoted programs and taken an increasing number of initiatives to foster respect for cultural diversity1 and equal opportunities2. Thereby, utmost importance is attached to the development of intercultural skills and the promotion of intercultural dialogue. Read more...

HOW TO MAKE THE BRAND TURNAROUND ON THE FIRST BIGGEST GLOBAL MARKET AFTER US?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #71718

I have always tried to lead by example. When I took this turnaround challenge, I was the first women to do so and my sales force and customers were mostly men. I gained respect step by step from all. Then I tried to balance the team with more women as I believe the balance creates a good mix and is part of diversity. Let’s look at the turnaround project. Read more...

What will be the role of an Interim Manager in the future?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #29129

10 years from now the world will be a different place – this is for sure. But how will companies operate and what role will Interim Managers play in this change? Didier looked at five assumptions regarding the near future – which one would you pick? Read more...

How do you value success?

Author : , CEO, Turkey based, iCEO #18892

Many of us measure success from a purely business perspective. We place value on aspects such as turnover, profit/loss, growth, customers, clients, sales, the list is endless. Often we fail to acknowledge value from other areas of our lives, and as such our tight focus on one aspect, often business, can see us scrutinising the wrong things. Read more...

Why Strategic Brand Management assumes even more relevance during economic downturn and recession

Author : , CEO, India based, iCEO #64286

"Brand drivers are bound to get rather complex during economic downturn and recessionary phases", states Asha Sampath in her short but valuable Discussion File on branding. In particular, when it comes to price war and sometimes cut throat competition amongst players, fighting for customers, who critically evaluate the value for money spent before making purchase decisions. Read more...

Selling through Insight

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #44080

Sales processes change as drastically as everything else in our fast moving business world. Whereas a few years ago, a 30 page slide deck to support your sales pitch was a common length, today you'll kill your pitch going a single page above 10. How can you adapt your strategy without losing your essential message? "Selling through insights not only demonstrates your knowledge", says Nitin Kumar in this Expert File. Read more...

Leadership Courage is Contagious

Author : , CEO, United Arab Emirates (The) based, iCEO #39215

It's helpful to define Leadership as "any attempt to influence" and Courage as "the ability and willingness to confront fear, pain, danger or uncertainty". So together Leadership Courage can be described as any attempt to influence a person or situation in the face of controversy where there is an easier option available. Quite often this alternative is a simple "Yes, I agree" rather than put your voice into the ring. It is this strength of conviction and verbalising those thoughts that are running around in a Courageous Leaders head that differentiates them from the yes people... Read more...

The Challenges of Measuring Innovation

Author : , CEO, India based, iCEO #26271

The age of IT is in many ways an age of innovation. Our ever burgeoning, discerning, global consumer base recognises and rewards newness in product and process. Such prospective demands R&D efforts across the world. But how is innovation measured? Read more...

Family Business in Latin America: Establishing a Protocol for Succession

Author : , CEO, Mexico based, iCEO #49937

All family owned businesses (FOB) have to face, one day or another, the passing of the reins to the next generation. This is a delicate moment in the life of any family-run organization. At that point, SMEs that have planned (and developed) in advance family protocols and succession agreements, will be in a much better position to achieve a generational transition without compromising the future and the continuity of the company itself. Read more...

How to let an Interim Manager do "the job" or "a great job"?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #29129

The background of this article are two French firms in trouble, with around one hundred employees and twenty million in revenue each. These two manufacturers of industrial equipment are subsidiaries of two international Groups of about 1,000 employees and € 200 million in revenue. Each local company suddenly loses his top manager, for different reasons, but that lead the Groups in both cases to assign an Executive Interim Manager. Read more...

Secrets to Successful Strategy Execution

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #62540

Execution has enjoyed an impressive reputation in the last few years under the banner that any strategy is worthless if not executed. While this assertion is tautologically undeniable, it is also true that executing a flawed strategy can have unappealing consequences. New Coke or the Betamax video format come to mind. Read more...

Secrets to Driving Sustainable, Long-Term Growth for Your Success

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Many of today’s business leaders, when planning for growth, admit to lacking a clear view of how to achieve their aspirations, and they say they are distracted by a wealth of potential opportunities. Stay focused on the tips in this article for the `Secrets of Driving Sustainable, Long-Term Growth for Your Success`. Read more...

How global uncertainty drives business, commercial and pricing models

Author : , CEO, India based, iCEO #68166

With rising global uncertainties, fueled by the recession of 2008, came new operating and business models including cloud computing. Business Processing Outsourcing (BPO) came in much earlier to that, perhaps due to the previous recession and evolution of technology. Read more...

WHY SHOULD YOUR CUSTOMERS DO BUSINESS WITH YOU?

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #7770

If you can’t explain why customers should do business with you, how can you expect THEM to know! Listen and look closely at advertisements that promote that they are the BEST – HIGHEST RANKED – MOST AWARDED – at something and it always come with the key qualifier. Best “in class,” and most awarded “in their segment…” Read more...

Cyber Ants Can Ruin Your Picnic

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #7770

Your enterprise is a daily competitive playing field. Every day – all day – there is a possibility that someone is trying to find a way to disrupt your business. The threats come in all sorts and sizes. Oversimplified, there are three basic sorts of cyber attackers. Read more...

ARE YOU REALLY READY FOR BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE?

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #7770

In the day of the simple country store, Business Intelligence was comprised of knowing what was “in stock,” what was “out of stock,” what it cost to replenish and how much turnover was in a given period. Today, retailers capture how long a product is on a specific shelf and does it sell better here or there – in which season and at what price and it was sold to whom. Read more...

Managing the cultural gap with chinese companies who want to do an IPO in London

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #51113

With the globalisation of world business, China has become an appealing market for foreign investors. The problem of cross-cultural management arises as the cooperation between China and its culturally different Western partners continues to increase at an unprecedented rate. Read more...

The qualities and experience needed to be a good chairman

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #51113

The role of the chairman has become much higher in profile and the expectations have increased as, quite rightly, stakeholders now expect an engaged, energetic and involved chairman who does more than simply manage the corporate governance process. Read more...

Business case mistakes and how to avoid them and then you will be successful

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

The difference between a strong case and a weak case has very little of to do with finance and everything to do with understanding a few simple elements of case design. To help understand why, consider briefly a “Top Five” list of common business case mistakes. Read more...

Why Renewable Energies Need A Renewable Mindset

Author : , CEO, Italy based, iCEO #35189

Energy is by definition an exciting thing… We use that word not only to describe the motor of our everyday life, the very essence of how our world works, but also to define spirit, character, even a conversation… Working in the energy field for the last ten years of his 35 year career, Liborio explains why renewable energies need a renewable mindset. Read more...

Avoiding the Aquisition Curse

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #43685

Surveys show that, in average, mergers and acquisitions destroy value. Highly publicized successes are not sufficient to compensate for disastrous operations. Yet, it is relatively easy to set the rules of good acquisition practices. M&A professionals know them well, but seem to keep breaking the rules: make acquisitions beyond the scope of their strategy, produce unrealistic business projections to accommodate for sellers exorbitant demands, or fail to implement integration plans. Read more...

Post Acquisition Integration

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #8001

After many years of being involved in business development, Alberto thinks one of the most critical moment in an acquisition is the integration phase, when there are great chances to destroy shareholders' value. In this Expert file he looks where the resources are concentrated during the three major temporal blocks of an acquisition. Read more...

Business Development in Biotech - a competitive advantage?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #26313

In this expert file, Sancha Salgueiro analyses the role of a business developer in a biotech company. Who does actually perform this function, what is he doing, what can he achieve ? Through the example of a successful biotech company, we will see how relevant it can be for such a company to hire a business developer. Read more...

Innovation is brains, toil, fun and sweat

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #43685

Olivier Pujol practiced innovation in all sorts of organizations, from the smallest (2 people) to the largest (>100.000) for 20 years. He witnessed failure and success, and sometimes, he participated, to failure and to success. In his Expert File he investigates the winning approach and losing formulas, how collective intelligence breeds innovation and looks at the four phases of innovation. Read more...

Exponential Disruptive Innovation

Author : , CEO, Hong Kong based, iCEO #65040

In this Discussion File, Mike Mastroyiannis looks at new ways of innovation that will transform your company. The pace of change driven by new technologies leads to a new phenomenon called exponential disruptive innovation. Check now, how your company will be affected: Which of the 4 key global trends will affect you most and how and which of Exponentially Disruptive industry/market forces will affect you most? And how can you benefit from this evolution? Read more...

Lessons from the Trenches and a discussion of investing madness

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #64786

When investing, in particular when it comes to large sums of money, certain rules should be obeyed to avoid the painful pittfalls of this particular business. Gerald is an experienced real estate Investor and talks in his "Lessons from the Trenches"- series about real cases. This particular lesson states an example of bad practice, which unfortunately, one finds more often than one thinks. Read more...

Due Diligence – “the final frontier”

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

In this Discussion File, Colin Thompson looks at the final frontier of any business buying process - the due dilligence. If you listened to the interview with Stewart Paperin (INSEAD Knowledge Video), you remeber waht he gave a reason for his biggest failure: lack of due dlligence! Read here, why this apect of the buying process is of such vital importance. Read more...

Different Worlds, Different Ways

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

It is autumn 2013; we are in the Indian city of Pune. Twenty Indian project managers, business analysts and software engineers have gathered in a training room. They want to learn how they can successfully bring the cooperation with a customer whose team is distributed across Germany and the United States back on track. At the moment, however, every single one of them is frustrated. The global programme, in which they work, is destined for disaster. Read more...

The Ten Keys to Your Business Success in 2015

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

There are ten critical areas where your ability to think largely determines the success or failure of your business. The greater clarity you have in each of these areas, the better decisions you will make and better results you will achieve. Read more...

Merging to Survive!

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

When we get through the present recession (yes, there is still a recession), many printers will be in a stronger position than when they entered it. The question is who will they be, and what are they doing now that puts themselves in that position? Read more...

Negotiating (And Mastering) the Indian Market

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

Some sources have put India on track to be the third largest economy in the world by 2035 (behind only the United States and China). It's a turbulent ride, sometimes — India has not been without its share of economic challenges. But a bit of turbulence isn't always a bad thing, because where there's turbulence, there's also opportunity. All you need to know is how to negotiate that turbulence. Speaking of turbulence, there's one thing that nearly every Western company says frustrates them when operating in India: Negotiation. Read more...

3 Things You'll Need To Succeed With Indian Manufacturing

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

We've worked since 1995 to connect Western businesses with the Indian market. Over that timespan (nearly 20 years now) we've seen patterns emerge—patterns of success, and patterns of failure. One developing pattern that is easy to see is the rise of Indian manufacturing. Some sources are saying that the Indian manufacturing sector could expand to six times the size it is now by 2025. There's a huge potential to profit in this field, but just like anything else you'll need the right tools to succeed. Read more...

Preventing Absenteeism at Work

Author : , CEO, Ireland based, iCEO #39865

According to the FT, (Oct 15, 2014), 130m work days were lost on account of sick leave last years in the UK, with an estimated cost to business of around £32bn. Whilst this figure includes costs associated with absenteeism resulting from back problems and stress, anything than can reduce peer to peer colds and flu contagion in the workplace is positive news for employers. Read more...

The Qualities and Experience Needed to be a Good Chairman

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #51113

The role of the chairman has become much higher in profile and the expectations of the chairman have also increased as, quite rightly, stakeholders now expect an engaged, energetic and involved chairman who does more than simply manage the corporate governance process. Read more...

LEADERSHIP` for Your Success

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

These basic competencies are considered vital for effective leadership: Develop a vision. With a competent, motivated staff, the leader is free to develop a working vision of the organisation's future. Know yourself. Your actions must align harmoniously with specific values, behaviour and principles. Connect with others. Understand what makes your employees perform at their best and give them what they need to help the business succeed. Read more...

Negotiating (And Mastering) The Indian Market

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

Some sources have put India on track to be the third largest economy in the world by 2035 (behind only the United States and China). It's a turbulent ride, sometimes — India has not been without its share of economic challenges. But a bit of turbulence isn't always a bad thing, because where there's turbulence, there's also opportunity. All you need to know is how to negotiate that turbulence. Speaking of turbulence, there's one thing that nearly every Western company says frustrates them when operating in India: negotiation. Read more...

What is happening in the global world?

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

In today's global world, it is very important, what happens in China and in the rest of the world, as everything seems to affect everything - worldwide. Thus Colin regularly looks at developments in different countries and their global meaning. Read more...

Napoleon's Big Mistake – and how you can avoid repeating it

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

What has Napoleon Bonaparte to do with your success when operating on a cross national platform? How can we learn from his mistakes to improve our global business? Read Waseems short but enlightening column and learn how you can avoid this mistake - not only in India but worldwide! Read more...

You can't send a duck to eagle school...

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

I have to admit, I was looking twice, when I saw the headline of Colin Thompson's short article. Ducks? Eagles? What's this to do with business? But then I was simply stunned by the truth behind this kind of funny sentence. What about you? Do you think you can transform a duck into an eagle by training? Read more...

Managers and leaders, which contribution to modernization?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #53186

In this paper, we seek to provide hints about how modernization might be implemented better, quicker and deeper, depending on which type of managerial abilities are developed. Modernization is observed from the point of view of the assimilation of new technologies, the impact of protection and differentiation in competitive sustainability of the relative benefits derived from its use, and the possible influence of changes in financing modes. Complementarities and relative advantage of management versus leadership skills are suitably explored. In each aspect, countries that have shown superior contribution are mentioned. Read more...

Who leads whom?

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #63159

That is the question facing the visitor in India. At the airport, he gets into a taxi and and soon, the cabby starts asking questions. “Where are you from? Is this your first time in India? Which hotel should I take you to?” And later in this inescapable conversation, which is actually more of an interview, he wants to know: “How many children do you have?” The Indian cabby assembles a profile of the foreigner and uses the gained knowledge to determine the answer to his true question: Is the visitor leading the cabby or is the cabby leading the visitor? Read more...

Challenges for the Printing Industry Globally in 2014

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

There are many factors affecting the demand for printing and thus the growth of this major global sector. Colin Thompson looks in detail at the key factors and trends for 2014. He claims, challenges to the printing industry impact other sectors too - what about your sector? How are you impacted by the printing sector? Read more...

Top Tips for Better Leadership and Your Success in 2014

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

As every year, all over the world people step into the new year with a list of things that shall be done differently in the coming 365 days. The wish list is long: from healthier living over better work-life balance, less spending and more willpower to Name a few. But what about your work relationships? Colin Thompson shares his Top Tips to boost your leadership qualities and thus your overall success. Read more...

Attaining Sustained Transformation

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #62540

It is no secret that an inordinate number of improvement efforts either fail to deliver or enjoy a very short lifespan. Even more unnerving is the notion that while an implemented change is alive and well, it is not clear that a business benefit is being derived from that change... Read more...

A Special Kind of Courage

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

There are several different aspects of courage. Perhaps the most important is the courage to endure, to persist, to "hang in there" in the face of doubt, uncertainty and criticism from others. Read more...

11 Rules and 2 Laws for a Starting Supervisor

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #9162

Did you ever wonder why newly promoted managers struggle in their new role, although they excelled in their former position? Tim Thexton investigated the major issues accompanying a promotion and drew up a set of rules to ease up the change. Whether this applies to yourself or to managers under your supervision, Tim's expert file is definetively worth reading and might just give you the answers you were looking for. Read more...

The 15 most common CV writing mistakes – and how to avoid them

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Evolution doesn't stop when it comes to writing CVs. Unfortunately, it's not an area, where one is liekely to check on the art of state, when writing a CV In his last expert file, André van Regenmortel gave a very useful overview why you should enter emerging markets now, where you should do so, and how you should do it. Now he goes one step further and explores the challenges of emerging, and thus very special and difficult markets. Read in this excellent paper, what pitfalls you may expect and how you can avoid them. Read more...

Major Company Transformation – the 15 Points to Remember

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #9162

As interim managers, especially senior managers and directors we are most frequently called in at times of major change – major transformation. As such, titling ourselves change managers, we are the harbingers of that inevitable part of the modern business environment – change. Change has been a constant through all the ages, but how quickly people forget change thanks to the shortness of memory. But change rarely comes easily. It can often be painful. But is that absolutely necessarily so? Read more...

Emerging Market Entry: a Necessary Good

Author : , CEO, Canada based, iCEO #61547

In his expert file, André van Regenmortel gives a very useful overview over the do's and dont's of starting an export business. Easy to read and topped with well chosen examples, he establishes 10 golden rules to follow when you consider entering new markets outside your national territory. Read more...

Tips for Improving Business Survival and Success

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Every year many business owners typically make resolutions which they hope will improve the health of their enterprise over the coming 12 months - the commercial equivalent of drinking less and getting more exercise. But with a triple-dip recession expected to be on the cards this year and with the retail sector particularly very vulnerable, which aspects of business could you focus on in order to improve their chances of survival and success if trading conditions do get worse? Here are ten aspects of business that the majority of business owners should be seeking to avoid or do less of during 2013. Read more...

Evaluation et amélioration de la maîtrise de sa function

(French)
Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #29129

Le métier de dirigeant de transition nous expose dans chaque mission à la problématique de l'évaluation des membres du personnel que l’on encadre et au delà. L'absence d'historique dans la société, le contexte difficile, la conduite du changement et la nécessité d'aller vite avec les moyens du bord qui caractérisent la plupart des missions de transition exacerbent le besoin d'évaluer rapidement et efficacement la maîtrise par nos collaborateurs et nos partenaires de leur fonction. Read more...

The 10 Golden Rules for successful export

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #61548

In his expert file, Freddy Dreher gives a very useful overview over the do's and dont's of starting an export business. Easy to read and topped with well chosen examples, he establishes 10 golden rules to follow when you consider entering new markets outside your national territory. Read more...

A sticky wicket?

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Some thoughts about the global economic climate written by CEO Europe partner and iCEO Colin Thompson What's going on in the world and how does this influence our business and life? Colin Thompson gives you hard facts about inflation, interest rates, consumer prices, etc. that influence the economic climate of each region and invites you to discuss future plans and your views via our LinkeIn Group International Management. Read more...

The Speed of Change Globally

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Have a vision for the future - Colin Thompson explains the speed of global change by looking into the printing industry, which is one of the main bellwether's for measuring a global economy. It`s often assumed that the printing industry moves in the same direction as the economy. The power of the commercial print sector has declined rapidly. This factual story is mirrored globally. When the printing press was invented in 1450, the population of Europe was 50 million people Read more...

Why Traditional Enterprise Software Sales Fail

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #42272

In his expert file, Gad Tobaly shows how a careful balance of "volume" and "value" marketing strategies will help vendors avoid the three classic reasons for unsuccessful sales efforts. He claims that traditional enterprise software sales efforts fail for three reasons: the solution does not meet its market’s needs, the sales force fixates on “big deals,” or the business model is flawed. The recent economic downturn means software vendors can no longer afford to make classic mistakes. A closer look at these reasons for failure shows that software vendors can leverage diversified go-to-market strategies to find new levels of sales success Read more...

Scenario Planning that Leads To Success

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Scenario planning isn't the same issue as strategic planning; basic strategic planning tends to address the accidents of the day, such as the decision to reduce inventory because of a downturn in the economy. Scenario planning looks at what's going to happen tomorrow. It's focused on understanding what the future will look like, so that CEOs can build their organisations accordingly... Read more...

Does Your Company Have a Winning Culture?

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #9064

I’ve been reading Bill and Dave (subtitled: How Hewlett and Packard built the World’s Greatest Company) by Michael Malone. He’s a great writer, and it’s an important business story; I heartily recommend it. Being an ex-HPer, I have tremendous respect, bordering on reverence for the “HP Way”, which was the basis for the culture at Hewlett Packard for so many years. With the benefit of hindsight, it wasn’t perfect and there were definitely things I’d change. But you can’t argue with the results. Bill and Dave essentially founded Silicon Valley, and built an unbelievably successful company that grew like clockwork for nearly four decades. The HP Way is long gone and the company is nearly unrecognizable from the one I worked in. But to this day I don’t believe they’ve ever had a full year of negative profit results... Read more...

“Boot strapping” a business without external funding

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #53379

Even in more favourable times, finding somebody to back your venture was difficult and these days it is even harder. Thus one route to starting a business with minimal investment is to find a niche in the local market place, which will allow you to generate a revenue stream. The market needs to be one that you want to grow into, based on your expertise or knowledge and growth possibilities if you had the investment. This is known as “boot strapping” a business. In effect pulling itself up by its boot straps... Read more...

M&A Information Risk Management: towards best practices

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #44080

As the economy goes digital (and global), competitive advantage is increasingly synonymous with information. More and more organizations are dependent on information systems to store their assets. Gaining competitive advantage through a merger or acquisition means that a company acquires the information assets of the target entity. How both acquirer’s and target’s information assets are integrated and shielded from various types of risk during the M&A can play a role in the success or failure of the new entity... Read more...

Good decisions are not sufficient to avoid bad situations

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #43685

“Success is 51% good decisions versus 51% bad decisions”. But actually, when making the “post mortem” analysis of a failure, few business decisions can be singled out as "bad". Some weaknesses in the decision processes may explain how a rationally “good” decision may not be “right”. And these weaknesses can be overcome. Read more...

22 POINT PLAN FOR SUCCESS

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Times are generally tough for most Businesses. Also, the reasons for the demise of companies was probably weak management, lack of management accountancy information, lack of adequate response to change, over trading i.e. the BIG project and high gearing plus normal business hazards and investors pumping money in without understanding the changing market place. Industry requires excellent business models developed by skilled and experienced people who understand how to operate a successful company. If companies take on board excellent successful business people with knowledge, then Industry would be in a better position. Lower levels of demand and pressures on cash flows are particular concerns. I would like to share with you my "22 - point plan for success" Read more...

Innovation and international growth

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #43685

Export is nowadays not anymore a “nice to have”, but a necessity for innovative SMEs. It goes through building an international export culture and contracting local executives. The Global Innovation Index 2011 indicates that countries like France and Italy are lagging behind other equivalent countries in terms of innovation. However, these countries demonstrate a capability to innovate in many fields. Recently, the French Business Confederation has expressed the concern that French SMEs seemed less capable than others to grow internationally. And the Global Innovation Index ranks France very low for services export (like Italy). The latter could explain the former: innovation without export remains confidential and has little chance to succeed and generate profitable business. But exporting is not easy... Read more...

Non-Executive Director - Experience and Good Practice

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #51113

NEDs are working harder than ever. The risk/reward is not what it should be. The Walker Report has made the job more onerous. Many boards are not tolerant enough of challenge and if someone asks too many questions, they are branded as part of the "awkward squad". Read more...

Adding compelling value to business processes: How to reduce cost with Nano technology

Author : , CEO, Ireland based, iCEO #39865

In times of financial prudence, credit scarcity, retrenchment, solvency risk and everyone demanding more for less, how can business organizations grow their business and profits? How can compliancy in best business practice mean reduction in facility costs? Are there still opportunities to do things better? What if you could add remarkable value to your company products? Or indeed remove an entire manufacturing process? Can innovation in technology really deliver cash savings? Yes, they can, says Dermott Reilly... Read more...

Consulting on Demand: Towards a new form of consulting?

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #43685

The future of SMEs goes through their ability to develop innovation and international business. This requires from top managers in these companies to be more aggressive and take more risks than ever: new offers, new products, new subsidiaries or acquisitions in foreign countries, new partners... Read more...

Automotive Sector: Enthusiasts Will Be Unleashed To Greener Pastures

Author : , CEO, Bulgaria based, iCEO #50350

World financial crisis seems to settle down, and so does the credit-dependent automotive industry. But grizzled veterans know that today we live in very different world. Good old times of drastic growth are over, fat players got lean, and so did the cash-starved supply chain. Heavily wounded corporations plunged into massive cost-reduction and headcount cutting programs. The aftermath was not a surprise... Read more...

THE RETENTION OF THE CUSTOMER

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #49200

Great business success is actually about one fundamental skill. It doesn't sound a very exciting skill so the business motivators do not talk about it much. But when you master it, you will become wealthy. Simple as that. The skill is getting and keeping customers. If you want to be five times more successful than you are now - you need five times more of the right customers. How do you make this happen? Read more...

Innovative liquidity solution for SME’s: True business heroes

Author : , CEO, Estonia based, iCEO #49677

Small business owners are the true heroes of any economy. Unlike publicly traded firms, private firms have to earn their capital – no public stock issues for them. The injustice is that when small business owners (SBO) try to get their capital out of the business when they exit, they have to compete with publicly traded firms. The SBO has for many years been contending with competitors across town or across the state. At the exit point this competition continues and is compounded by the realization that there will be an additional contest with publicly traded capital markets. Read more...

Global Account Management: The next strategic battlefield for SMBs?

Author : , CEO, Germany based, iCEO #41393

Global Accounts: a serious business opportunity for global SMBs

Tough economic times always offer company’s the opportunity to find better ways to do things. This applies well to sales and marketing. All companies, large and small have to be sharper in their decisions on where to allocate their resources. For large corporations, a very good way to do this is to focus on existing large clients with global operations, the so called Global Accounts.
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Role of the Non-Executive Director (“NED”) in difficult markets and economic uncertainty and what keeps him awake at night

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #51113

Frank points out the NED's challenges, risks, obligations, legal rights and many more in todays difficult economic times. You want to know what it takes to be a good NED? Read more...

Are there higher strategies for companies?

Author : , CEO, Ireland based, iCEO #39865

Companies and organizations globally are striving to increase profit and shareholder value in times of phenomenal socio-economic change and political financial upheaval. Business is never easy and when times are tough the consensus often is to focus on core competencies, ruthlessly cutting costs, doing more with less. Perspectives can be reduced in recessionary periods as companies focus to survive. However, perspectives, whilst powerful are culturally determined and open to influence, redirection and positive change. Read more...

Building Enterprise Applications to Withstand Project Failure

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #26299

The evolution of Cloud Computing and Rich Internet Applications (RIA) has brought about some fundamental changes in IT that is drawing attention to how IT projects are being managed and paid for. The real goal of software development is the fulfillment and delivery of requirements. Yet, the puzzling reality is that (according to NIST) 70% of the defects in a delivered application are injected during a project’s requirements and design phase, and 60% of those are discovered only during user acceptance testing! At that point, the cost of fixing defects is 20 times higher compared to if the problem were fixed during the design phase... Read more...

The Three Stages of The Enterprise Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Relationship And What To Do Next

Author : , CEO, Switzerland based, iCEO #26299

When picturing the relationship between the enterprise and the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business model, I imagine an evolutionary process that can be divided into three main stages. The first let’s call ‘The Comfort Zone’; the second ‘The Enlightenment’; and the final stage ‘The Re-Assessment’. Once we examine these we can then decide upon the right course of action when choosing how to adapt to the IT demands of the enterprise... Read more...

Crouching Tiger – Hidden Message

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #30509

Marc Lawn is an experienced Director with experience across the globe, and through many disciplines (sales, marketing, operations, HR and strategy) and sectors (media, leisure, automotive, food, drink and retail). He is also the successful author of Renaissance Management which is the Aesop's Fables of business. Read more...

Challenges ahead for the European Consumer Goods and Retail Industry

Author : , CEO, Belgium based, iCEO #11255

In the Consumer Markets space, whilst the key issue remains the ongoing power battle between retailers and food & drink manufacturers, the novelty is the booming food price hike and its consequences on many players across the food value chain. Manufacturers traditionally faced hard times negotiating price increases to retailers. 2007-2008 saw a major change in that suppliers were largely able to pass on increases in raw materials and fuel prices. In a context of continued tension due to the classical power game between retailers and manufacturers, we have seen retailers increase to further heights the market share of their own private label offerings, which are going premium full steam ahead, just like many of the branded food and beverage products. The gap between the premium end of own label and the mainstream brands is narrowing dangerously... Read more...

Interim management in 7 phases

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #29129

Didier Douziech shares with us his experience as a Transition Manager with an assignment description, in 7 phases. Read more...

4 ways that startup companies spend themselves out of business

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #9064

You've seen it too many times before - the free spending start-up company which burns through their funds like a cocaine addict on vacation in Columbia. It's a sad tale with great potential often wasted and many jobs lost. Phil Morettini's article gives a short overview of the do's and don'ts of managing a start-up. The amazing fact: it all sounds so logical and clear but still the same mistakes are made over and over again! Read more...

Cross-border investing in the emerging economies of Asia: China

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #8931

The idea of this innovative model is to invest and obtain control simultaneously in regional companies located in China and North America. Thus the Western management and operational standards can be combined with the existing sourcing and manufacturing operations and markets in China. This structure requires a cross border involvement vehicle that gives the opportunity of rigorous operational M&A due diligence and value creation in our global economy. Read more...

SOS - companies in jeopardy!

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #13126

Companies cannot afford to waste any time to reach their strategic targets such as adjusting a problem, achieving a M&A or managing a critical project. However, by postponing the recruitment of a competent manager, lots of companies put themselves in a difficult situation, loosing their competitivity or their market position. Here are some examples where companies hired transition managers to handle critical issues. Read more...

Managing International Projects

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #18444

Larry Traynor shares his experience of the complexities of managing international projects and recommends 12 golden rules for success. He describes some real life scenarios and provides the management tools to avoid, and or to solve situations that are potentially damaging to international projects. Read more...

How Trustworthy is your organisation?

Author : , CEO, UK based, iCEO #17532

It is amazing how much trust or lack thereof can influence the success of your company. The motivational aspect of this essential ingredient of human relationships is often underrated - much to the detriment of the productivity of a team. Increasing trust is very simple though - just follow the three "C" as described by John Schonegevel. Read more...

Cleaning up/restructuring in the case of heavy loss-generating business units

Author : , CEO, France based, iCEO #39878

It is bad enough, when an entity of a company becomes a source of recurrent losses, is this entity also located in a foreign country, the situation gets even worse: language and cultural barriers add to the difficulties of finding the appropriate solutions. Thierry Potok's article gives real expert advice on how to deal with this type of situation successfully. Read more...

The Asia opportunity and Singapore

Author : , CEO, Singapore based, iCEO #13220

Asia is a huge growth market and offers major opportunities for most companies. Due diligence is important as levels of transparency differ across Asia. Remote coverage is mostly not effective, extensive expatriate staffing is financially not viable. The most effective way to go is local staffing with adequate mentoring and oversight. Singapore is one of the most attractive locations for regional headquarters. Read more...

The initiation of a M&A program

Author : , CEO, USA based, iCEO #12639

M&A are a critical step for an enterprise. Many of them fail because of inappropriate preparation and a neglect of the many variables that cannot be mastered by a purely theoretical or economic vision. This article shows once again that experience is definitively the key factor to success. Read more...

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HR Insight Papers

A Tip on the Long Tail of Top Management

Author : VPHR, Switzerland based, iCEO #26299

Executive 26299Taking risks is inherent in top management roles, but some often suppressed aspects are isolation and doubt. With the increase of economic and political uncertainly and complexity, top managers need to be able to ponder alternatives and decisions with stakeless peers – something that they cannot find in their Boards or management groups.

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OUT IN FRONT 2010 – 2020: War of Experts

Author : VPHR, Austria based, iCEO #50539

Executive 50539According to a landmark Mc Kinsey study in 1997, 6.000 manager and executives stated that the most important corporate resource over the next twenty years will be talent. Smart, sophisticated business people who are technologically literate, globally astute and operational agile. In 2000 they updated the study and found, despite the economic slowdown and the end of the dot.com boom, the war for talent was intensifying dramatically. McKinsey found that attracting and retaining talent was not just a valid desire – it was a business imperative.

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Hiring the “A” Team: The Right Ingredients for Recruiting Success

Author : VPHR, Canada based, iCEO #35976

HR FilesThere’s no doubt that the well-established race for talent will continue to intensify. Shifting demographics are significantly impacting the composition of the talent pool, to the harsh extent that some companies are even leaving positions unfilled because they cannot locate the “perfect fit” candidates. Yet, in this global economy where the most critical competitive differentiators are derived from a higher performing workforce, this approach simply isn’t viable. Plus, when the mandate from the board clearly states that ‘our people are our greatest asset,’ HR professionals need to support the organization with a firm strategy that addresses hiring challenges. Simply put, to sustain and drive a market leader position, hiring the ‘A’ team is a necessity, not an option...

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Sales & Marketing Insight Papers

The “Non Sales” Sales Person

Author : VPSM, India based, iCEO #65923

Marketing manager 65923According to Shantanu Sen Sharma, the role of non-sales - Project Managers, Delivery Managers, Production and Quality folks, Domain and Functional experts, increases exponentially. New sales models like "Challenger Selling" etc. (see also 'Selling through Insight' by Nitin Kumar) are making this need felt even more - the ability to PREDICT the customer’s pain as opposed to JUST UNDERSTANDING it.

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The Challenges of Emerging Market CMOs - 5 Pitfalls to avoid

Author : VPSM, Canada based, iCEO #61547

Marketing manager 61547In his last expert file, André van Regenmortel gave a very useful overview why you should enter emerging markets now, where you should do so, and how you should do it. Now he goes one step further and explores the challenges of emerging, and thus very special and difficult markets. Read in this excellent paper, what pitfalls you may expect and how you can avoid them.

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Improve your sales efficiency

Author : VPSM, UK based, iCEO #50408

Marketing manager 50408Time and sales – Do you have too much or too little? Most people think their own sales teams are not “World Class” and that they lack efficiency and effectiveness. Possibly you feel the same. Do you think that your sales could be better? Do you wonder why deals are just not happening? The good news is that you are not alone; almost all companies think the same, including your competition. Not many people however know what is causing the problem or even how to fix it...

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