News + Thought

The myth of visionary leadership

Very successful people tend to be surprisingly ordinary. The average millionaire entrepreneur you meet will tend to be highly competent, no question, and generally fairly talented in some...

Forget “purpose”, do this instead

Nope. A sad fact of life is that even the best ideas will often get warped and simplified to the point of uselessness. As concepts pass through the public consciousness, people will inevitably...

Why new brands need to be less ethical

You may have heard Voltaire’s phrase “the perfect is enemy of the good” - often used in a business context to essentially mean “just get it...

A shortcut to good strategy

It has been said that the true competitor of a Harley Davidson is not a Yamaha, or a Honda, but in fact a conservatory. Within this quip lies the most fundamental of strategic truths; one which...

Gillette the latest brand to succumb to the “marketer’s fallacy”

If you’re reading this, two things can be assumed: You have seen the new Gillette ad You have an opinion on the new Gillette ad Now, for our purposes here what that opinion is...

Why “big brand thinking” is poison for independents

In spite of everything you read - including here - there isn’t really one right way to run a business. Businesses can become successful via all sorts of weird strategies, including ones that...

Steve Jobs is a bad business role model

Don’t try and be like Steve Jobs. Don’t learn from his example, don’t try and copy his techniques, don’t internalise his philosophy. I’m not referring here to his famously...

The self-loathing business

As has been touched on in these pages before, there is little more insidious than a focus on gaining “market share”. The idea encourages all sorts of self-destructive beliefs, such as: ...

Marketing needs more cynicism

Frank Zappa, when asked “why modern music sucks”, had an interesting answer which is highly instructive for the degradation of all sorts of artistic disciplines - not least marketing. It’s...

The power of an unfashionable business

There’s a theory in music which suggests, broadly speaking, that there have been no significant new genres created since the advent of the internet. Whilst no rock n’ roll song could ever...

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