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Victoria’s Secret CEO Sharen Turney: From Cattle to Camisoles

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In a recent lecture, Victoria’s Secret president and CEO Sharen Turney described her path to the C-suite and shared insights about the company’s future strategy.

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The Core Incompetencies of the Corporation

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Large organizations of all types suffer from an assortment of congenital disabilities that no amount of incremental therapy can cure. First, they are inertial. They are frequently caught out by the future and seldom change in the absence of a crisis. Deep change, when it happens, is belated and convulsive, and typically requires an overhaul of the leadership team. Absent the bloodshed, the dynamics of change in the world’s largest companies aren’t much different from what one sees in a ...

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Governing the Smart, Connected City

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As politics at the federal level becomes increasingly corrosive and polarized, with trust in Congress and the President at historic lows, Americans still celebrate their cities. And cities are where the action is when it comes to using technology to thicken the mesh of civic goods — more and more cities are using data to animate and inform interactions between government and citizens to improve wellbeing.

Every day, I learn about some new civic improvement that will become possible when we can ...

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Coworkers Should Be Like Neighbors, Not Like Family

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All companies want engaged employees. After all, people who are engaged put in effort that goes above and beyond the minimum that’s required to complete a task. They are less likely to look for another job. And they project positive energy, which improves the mood of other employees and customers.

One way to increase engagement is to foster a “neighbor” relationship.

Research on types of relationships suggests that we can break the world up into several kinds of relationships. I refer to the three ...

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How the Market Ruined Twitter

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There was a time when Twitter could be described as “plumbing.” Now the best description might be, “giant bank account with a company attached.” It’s hard not to see this as a big step backwards, and to wonder whether the standard venture-capital-to-public-company trajectory is turning out to be entirely wrong for an enterprise like Twitter.

Let me explain, starting with the plumbing. The quote comes from author, tech thinker, and now public-TV personality Steven Johnson: “The history of the Internet ...

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It’s Not HR’s Job to Be Strategic

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Human-capital issues are top-of-mind for CEOs around the world — but their regard for the HR function remains perilously low: In a PwC study, only 34% said that HR is well prepared to capitalize on transformational trends (compared with 56% for finance).

Sadly, chief executives aren’t the only ones with this negative perception. It’s pervasive in organizations — and to make matters worse, HR practitioners have inadvertently played into it. In its “State of Human Capital” report, McKinsey ...

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Identifying the Biases Behind Your Bad Decisions

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By now the message from decades of decision-making research and recent popular books such as Daniel Kahneman’s Thinking, Fast and Slow should be clear: The irrational manner in which the human brain often works influences people’s decisions in ways that they and others around them fail to anticipate. The resulting errors prevent us from making sound business and personal decisions, even when we’ve accumulated abundant work experience and knowledge.

Unfortunately, even though we know a lot about how biases like ...

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Is the Corporate Campus Dying?

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Jennifer Magnolfi, Founder & Principal Investigator at Programmable Habitats LLC, on how digital work, and the Internet of Things will fundamentally change the how we use the buildings and neighborhoods we work in. For more, read the article Workspaces That Move People.

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Stressed Out by Work? You’re Not Alone

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For workers today, the pressure is on more than ever before. To ease the stress, a widespread culture change is in order, experts say.

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Put the “and” Back in “Sales and Marketing”

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Nowhere else in the executive suite of a typical corporation are two functions as closely intertwined as sales and marketing. Yet for all the shared responsibility, the marketing and sales relationship has often been a contentious and lopsided one, with sales dominating in B2B sectors while marketing leads in B2C ones.

The joint challenge today for CMOs and heads of sales (or CSOs – Chief Sales Officers) is how they can work together to discover insights that matter, design the right ...

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