Is Leadership an Increasingly Difficult Balancing Act? Winning leaders that have little confidence in long-range planning, predictions of others, or their own biases. They will spend less time planning and more time fostering the organizational ability

Is Leadership an Increasingly Difficult Balancing Act?

by James Heskett | Nov 22, 2013

The notion that organizations increasingly will have to pursue transient strategic advantage rather than sustained advantage intensifies the challenge for leaders, says Professor Jim Heskett. What do YOU think? Leadership has always required the management of tensions caused by the simultaneous need for such things as short-term and long-term performance, the exploitation of existing ideas and the search for new ones, and the staffing and motivation of leadership teams with people of diverse backgrounds and capabilities. Read more of this post

Emergence Of The Misfit

A Brief Manifesto For Misfit Entrepreneurs

I came to a journalism startup from a background in engineering and business. Is outsider status really an advantage in the startup world?

By Sunmin Kim

“Are you a real journalist?” asked the editor on the other end of the line. “Is this what you do?” It should have been a routine call in my role with the journalism nonprofit Student Reporter, but this woman had smelled my lack of experience in the industry and balked at our paid syndication proposal. “What’s your background?” she pressed. At that time, I was an Engineering and Business Strategy graduate research assistant at the University of Michigan, doing work in corporate sustainability strategy; my previous life before that being spent mostly in nanotechnology laboratories (“cleanrooms”), researching and developing technologies for biofuel applications. For her, journalism sounded like an “extracurricular” interest of mine. Is that such a bad thing? Today, I work on Student Reporter professionally, and we’re on track to incorporate as a business news outlet for young people, leveraging our global network of experimental newsrooms. I’m here because I am passionate about entrepreneurship and industry transformations–especially those that are disrupted by technology and driven by altruism–and because I want to take an entrepreneurial role in the transformation, something no job I had interviewed for seemed to offer. Read more of this post

Wall Streeters Are Starting To Pass Around This Chart Showing The Market On The Cusp Of A Big Crash

Wall Streeters Are Starting To Pass Around This Chart Showing The Market On The Cusp Of A Big Crash

JOE WEISENTHAL NOV. 22, 2013, 5:49 AM 24,700 37

Dan Greenhaus of BTIG (@danBTIG) includes this chart in his latest nightly email. It shows the current market aligned with the market in the days before the Depression. What does the chart mean? Dan has the best take: Indeed, we recently devoted an entire conference speech to pushing back on the idea of an equity bubble. How do we know the story remains? The chart below, overlaying the S&P 500 today against equities in the 20s/30s is now starting to make the rounds. Without getting too personal, “chart overlaying” is lazy and this is no less so. But it does remind us that as much as everyone thinks everyone else is “all bulled up,” these views still persist and have shown no indication they are going away any time soon. This is the crucial thing, which Dan nails. It’s not that the chart has any predictive value. It’s just interesting that everyone’s passing it around. 

screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.43.20 am

SEEK’s Andrew Bassat named EY’s Australian Entrepreneur Of The Year

Nassim Khadem Reporter

Andrew Bassat named EY’s Australian Entrepreneur Of The Year

Published 22 November 2013 07:50, Updated 22 November 2013 09:10


SEEK co-founder and Australian EY Entrepreneur of the Year, Andrew Bassat. Photo: Jesse Marlow

The man who co-pioneered the online job marketplace SEEK, chief executive Andrew Bassat, is the 2013 Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year. Bassat co-founded SEEK with his brother Paul in 1997. The Bassats ranked at 155 on the 2013 BRW Rich 200 list, with a combined fortune of $315 million. Paul Bassat stepped away from the business in 2011– he left to build up his private investment company Avalon Place and to establish himself as a start-up investor at Square Peg Capital. Under Andrew Bassat’s leadership, SEEK has since become a $4.13 billion listed employment giant and changed the media landscape forever. SEEK began as an internet startup, with the aim of stealing employment classifieds from metropolitan newspapers. The Melbourne-based company is now the world’s largest online employment agency. “The idea for SEEK came back in 1997, when my brother was looking for a house,” Bassat says. “Going through the process, we realised how inefficient the existing classifieds system was and had a notion we could improve it. Read more of this post

Hidden Billionaires Emerge With Retail Fortune in Germany

Hidden Billionaires Emerge With Retail Fortune in Germany

Four members of Germany’s Otto family, which controls Otto GmbH & Co KG, owner of the Crate & Barrel and bonprix retail chains, have surfaced as billionaires, based on a review of German regulatory filings. Benjamin Otto, 38, holds 12.5 percent of the business, which is also known as the Otto Group, making him one of the country’s youngest billionaires. He’s the son of Michael Otto, the 70-year-old chairman of the conglomerate, who controls 78.5 percent of company. The two have a combined fortune of $10.6 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Read more of this post

Oldest 3,700-Year-Old Wine Cellar Found in Ancient Site in Israel

Oldest Wine Cellar Found in Ancient Site in Israel

A 3,700-year-old wine cellar still holding vestiges of the drink has been unearthed in the Near East, potentially offering modern man a true taste of the past. The excavation in the ancient city of Tel Kabri, in Israel uncovered 40 jars in sizes that could have filled about 3,000 modern wine bottles. The residue suggested they once contained both white and red wine, made with additives that included juniper berries, cinnamon bark, mint and myrtle. Read more of this post

Damodaran: The more comfortable you are in valuing a company, the less point there is to doing that valuation.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Value in the eye of the storm: Why you should welcome uncertainty!

One of the responses to my last post on valuing young companies was that even if you can value companies early in the life cycle, you cannot do so with any degree of confidence. I concede that point, but that is exactly why I would try to value them! I know that statement makes little sense, but to solidify my argument, take a look at the following list of five assets/entities and rank them on the basis of the confidence you will feel in valuing each one (I have provided my rankings and the reasons in the table). Read more of this post

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