I have read many books in the last two years, ranging from business to auto-biographies to self-help to fiction books. I just put down a book titled “Trading Up” (find it on Flipkart or Amazon ) after reading it for two weeks. And what a captivating read it was! It was difficult to put it down once I started it. One reason could be that the book was about retail and shopping, and I am already interested in that because of my experience with SaleRaja and exposure to the retail world. But apart from that too, the book was very well researched and a lot of data has been presented in the book to justify the points made. The book has tried to illustrate how middle class consumers are ‘trading up‘ to buy high quality products that deliver benefits on many different levels, even at a price premium and how that is breaking the traditional price-volume demand curve. The product could be as simple as a soap and as complex as cars. The basic premise is that traditionally, the markets have had two kind of products, the conventional goods that sell at low margins and high volumes and the luxury goods which sell… Read the rest
Innovation is defined as the creation of better or more effective products, technologies or ideas that makes life easier for its customers and solves a problem in the process. Innovation is the buzz word these days in business circles and the use of technology in designing innovative solutions across different sectors has never been more pronounced before.
If you see innovation discussions happening these days, most people will list the iPhone and the iPad, Facebook, the Sony Walkman and other technology related stuff on the top of their list. While such innovations have captured the media attention and earned a lot of money and market share for the respective companies behind them, there is another kind of innovation happening in the world. This new kind of innovation is happening in developing countries, even in villages, but it is not being covered by media, not being distributed across markets and countries, and not being talked about as much as iPad and other similar products.
While the first kind of innovation is mostly happening for business reasons and are focussing on making life more comfortable for its users (and not necessarily solving any critical problems), the second kind of… Read the rest
Among some of the best books that I have read is ‘Banker to the Poor‘ (buy from Flipkart or Amazon ) by Muhammad Yunus. It is the story of how he created Grameen Bank with the vision of easy credit availability to those who need it the most. It is a fascinating read, and it is impossible not to take something away from it. He saw a vision, and against all odds, ran Grameen as a business and gave micro-credit to the world. He changed the way the world looked at banking. Apart from the economics, he and Grameen Bank has had a huge social impact in Bangladesh, with millions of households being empowered to live a life they love. For his efforts, Muhammad Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006.
There are many traditional human values which have been exemplified in this book, and by Grameen Bank and Muhammad Yunus. These are the values which are common to most successful people, most winners alike, be it in the field of sports, business, politics, or social change. I am listing below the five basic values which the story of Grameen and Mr Yunus very clearly demonstrate -
… Read the rest
The IPL has taken the country by storm for the third year in the running. But more so, it has taken cricket by storm. If you ask somebody what is IPL and he replies – “It is India’s domestic T20 cricket tournament”, you can’t be more wrong. IPL is the perfect mixture of glamour, fun and entertainment making it a complete package for cricket and bollywood crazy Indians. No doubt it is such a success in a country like ours, where cricket, apart from being a sport, also unites Indians like nothing else. T20s will continue after the IPL too (for the rest of the year), but an IPL match will only come back next year.
Here are the list of 7 top innovations which make an IPL match stand out from (normal) T20 matches -
1. Cheerleaders – Cheerleading is basically an US phenomena that include elements of tumbling, dance, cheers, jumps and stunting to direct spectators of events to cheer. The cheerleaders in IPL have also been imported from US, and dressed in “attractive” dressing, are as much an attraction in the stadium, as the match itself. As expected, some self-righteous Indians have made a controversy out of their… Read the rest