Ten Stories We Have Enjoyed This Week

22nd May 2015

1) I like this a lot -The First Question to Ask of Any Strategy. ‘The test I apply is quite simple. I look at the core strategy choices and ask myself if I could make the opposite choice without looking stupid…The point is this: If the opposite of your core strategy choices looks stupid, then every competitor is going to have more or less the exact same strategy as you. That means that you are likely to be indistinguishable from your competitors…

2) A subject very close to our hearts – some interesting articles on Creativity this week –
Want to be more Creative? Constrain Yourself. The importance of ‘The Freedom of Constraint’ . ‘Limits provide a challenge, something to succeed in spite of. If the human brain loves anything, it’s triumphing in the face of adversity—even if that ‘adversity’ is as arbitrary as a set time-slot. So as much as it might feel like being limited is the antithesis of creativity, shutting down some avenues of possibility can actually be a strong push towards brilliance.’

Why Creative Leaders Are More Effective – ‘ they are able to create environments which are not only more stimulating for their teams but also happier places to be’. From the clever people @uppingyourelvis (friends of TDF)

From Fast Company. The 100 Most Creative People in Business. At No.1? Charles Arntzen, Regents’ Professor, at Arizona State University’s Centre for Infectious Diseases and Vaccinology. His achievement? – fighting Ebola with tobacco.

3) The poet Dante Alighieri , has turned 750. On April 24th, Samantha Cristoforetti, Italy’s first female astronaut, took time off from her regular duties in the International Space Station to read from the Divine Comedy. She picked the opening canto of the Paradiso, in which Dante describes his ascent through the circle of fire and his approach toward God: ‘I was within the heaven that receives more of His light; and I saw things that he who from that height descends, forgets or can not speak’.

4) In the world of ‘always on’ video streaming, which brands are getting involved with Periscope or Meerkat?

5) Spotify launches video, news and podcasts. Will it help reverse their decline in profitability?

6) Can Mozilla halt Firefox’s slide and reverse the trend towards a browser duopoly on the web? Mozilla helped an open Web flourish in the 2000s, but now it’s struggling to play a meaningful role on mobile devices.

7) Just in case you know one… from Marketing Magazine : ‘Psychopaths are everywhere. How to deal with them at work’. Apparently we have a higher than average number in the world of marketing…

‘The first thing to remember when dealing with a psychopath is not to take their behaviour personally. They behave the way they do because they lack the ability to be reasonable and rational. So, remember, when they are shouting at you, manipulating or upsetting you, it has got nothing to do with ‘you’.’

8) The Weirdest place on the Internet? – the list of deleted articles from Wikipedia. For example – ‘arm hair fetishism’,’attack of the 50 foot Hitler’ and ‘Bearatross’

9) An interesting perspective on Facebook’s new Internet.Org‘This Facebook effort is neither about the Internet, and nor is it a “.org” – the traditional domain for a not-for-profit. It’s just about acquiring folks from the bottom of the pyramid as Facebook users. So Facebook can, over time, get that $8.65 more for each of them, while at the same time making sure that Google doesn’t get their $46 from everyone’

10) An honest guide to Social Media buttons…. As in Twitter’s ‘Favourite’ : I’m acknowledging you but don’t want a conversation about this’ or ‘This is funny/interesting , but not enough to retweet’.