Tag / trend
It’s the time of year when many employees are cashing in their vacation allotment, and it can sometimes seem like no one is in the office. But rather than bemoan how hard it is to get stuff done during vacation season, recent research and corporate experiments suggest that there might not be enough employees taking time off — and even if they are taking time off, they should be taking more of it. There’s an upward trend in employers offering their people more long-term vacations and sabbaticals, and the evidence suggests that everyone benefits.
While sabbaticals are still rare inside of corporate America, their presence is increasing rapidly. According to a survey from the Society for Human Resource Management, the percentage of companies offering sabbaticals (both paid and unpaid) rose to nearly 17% of employers in 2017. That’s a significant gain from 1977, when McDonald’s instituted what was arguably the first corporate sabbatical program in the United States.
While the type (paid ..
There’s been a gold rush happening in technology these last few years, focused on the Internet of Things, or IoT. It’s even frequently been referred to as “the next Industrial Revolution.” The stampede to connect anything and everything in the home to a mobile app – a stampede that I’d argue has been driven by grossly inflated numbers and speculation – has the potential to lure companies into unfamiliar territory, with no guarantee of a safe or profitable return. I know because I’ve been there.
The company I lead, Big Ass Solutions, manufactures and sells fans, lights, and controls for commercial and residential use. Our products work with apps or without apps. And while we’ve found customers for IoT connectivity, the number of our customers who value the new technology has been much lower than industry projections led us to believe.
There are some useful lessons here for other manufacturers, especially those who haven’t yet “connected” and might be concerned they’ve missed the boat...
Photo by Vicko Mozara Evidence is piling up that vacations are good for business. Not only does taking vacation contribute to enhanced productivity but it also immunizes our teams against the toxic negative attitudes that can be contagious in the workplace. So if vacation has such a good ROI, why are people taking less and less of it? In one study, researchers found that employees fear that their manager will think less of them for taking vacation. Yup, they are blaming you (what’s new?). To change this worrisome trajectory, you need to get creative about how to get your team members to take vacation.
First, make the business case. Use a few minutes in a team meeting to share some of the research on the benefits of vacation. A 2015 HBR article by Ron Friedman is a treasure trove of facts about the benefits to reaction time, creativity, and engagement. The article also highlights the risks of foregoing vacation in terms of impulsiveness, poor concentration, and negativity. Hearing thes..
Kenneth Andersson for HBR Historically, shopping has been a sensory experience. Store associates served as personal shoppers, helping customers pick out items. Shoppers gauged quality by the look and feel of a product. They asked for sales associates’ opinions when they tried on clothes. It was as much an emotional experience as it was a physical, tactile one.
That traditional “personal touch” shopping experience is hard to replicate online. As more companies struggle to find their niche with the modern consumer, they’re turning to new technologies to recreate this sensory experience. What’s emerging is what I call the “StoreHouse” — a hybrid model that merges the physical benefits of a real-world store with the convenience of home. To embrace this market shift, retailers will need to experiment with a range of technologies and strategies across marketing, supply chain, and merchandising. Here’s how some brands are already doing this:
Making the bedroom the new fitting room When eyeg..
Paul Garbett for HBR Risk taking by big U.S. banks exploded in the years leading up to the 2008 financial crisis, with disastrous consequences for American firms, markets, and households. Much of the added risk, of course, came in the form of complex, opaque financial instruments like derivatives, the “financial weapons of mass destruction” that played such a central role in the crisis and the panic that followed.
But why did banks get in so deep with derivatives, particularly after Washington tried to crack down on risk with new laws and regulations in the early 2000s? In a recent study, published in the American Sociological Review, we trace the growth in bank risk taking to a surprising culprit: the rise of the chief risk officer (CRO). Many banks, it turns out, responded to new regulatory and reporting demands by appointing a CRO, as a way to show regulators and investors that they were serious about risk management. The popularity of this position skyrocketed after CROs (and the ..