Press "Enter" to skip to content

Tag: business

New thoughts on automation

For whatever reason, it’s quite rare to find a talk so interesting you’re on the edge of your seat for most it. This delightfully happened to me recently while listening to LEK Consulting‘s Andrew Allum talk about automation.

I find the topic of automation generally quite clear-cut: I think it’s a Good that will cause a fair amount of Bad in the short term. The bad consists of major restructuring in the job market and a lot of unemployment, which makes the fear and loathing around automation justifiable – too emotional and alarmist, but understandable. The good is in the long-term effect of greater productivity, lower prices and increased availability of valuable products and services for more people. Also, better jobs.

So against that backdrop of ‘This is a non-issue’, I was happy to find a lot of new food for thought in the talk. Mr Allum stressed that he was not a futurist and did not want to speculate much on what the effect of the changes we’re seeing now might be. I however am letting my mind wander, so have your grains of salt at the ready…

Business

Publishing and the five competitive forces

Michael E. Porter is a management writer and thinker, whose most famous essay is The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy. I finally read this essay a couple of weeks ago, and it was natural while reading to think about how the five forces relate to publishing. Here’s what I think.

Business

A SWOT analysis of publishing

If someone was considering (trade) publishing as a career, what might they take into account?

Note that some of these points are based on my best guesses, so if you’re here because you’ve got a job offer, do do your own research into a company as they might have very different policies and culture. I know all of this hasn’t always applied to the companies I’ve worked at.

Business

Kernels of thoughts

London street at twilight
A June evening on my street

When I was growing up, I kept a diary for years. I had a friend who was a very gifted artist, and when we met and swapped diaries to get up to speed about what the other one had been up to, I was so impressed with the colourful, doodle-y pages of her diary. I obviously tried to ape her best as I could, so the main purpose of keeping a diary for a while was to come up with some witty illustrations or colour patterns my friend wouldn’t have thought of.

Now I dream of keeping a grown-up diary where I could record thoughts. I figure, when I’m old and want to look back, I won’t be so interested in which places I visited, etc – but what I used to think about things.

My efforts to start keeping a diary again have largely failed, but I can at least commit my ideas to the internet! Here are a couple of thoughts from the past week or so.

Personal