Time for change…

Today was my last day at Pactera Switzerland (formerly Innoveo Solutions) as Managing Director and Board member.

The end of a 14-year journey started with some slides presented at the Helvetia Group Executive Board in 2000. This period was full of nice and tough moments, bringing so much experience. I had the chance to meet so many great people (partners, customers, providers, competitors) and to work with/for them. To travel and discover new countries and new cultures: Russia, China, India, UAE/Dubai, Morocco, Italy, Spain, Germany, Austria, Denmark, … But specially I had such a great team around me, this is for sure what I’m the most proud of, and which is making my departure so complicated and emotional! You are the best, my colleagues and friends, my best wishes to all of you smile emoticon And thanks for your great gift (cf. picture), a book full of photos from our last 14 years events!

From Monday, I’m joining another great team at Boomerang Pharmaceutical Communications as Global Chief Operating Officer. I know this strong mid-size company since its foundation 17 years ago and I was working there as Board member for a long time. I’m very excited to integrate the Management Team there and to participate to the next steps of the growth of Boomerang!

Internet Mega-Trends

I couldn’t have a look earlier to the well-known KPCB Internet trends presentation. Lots of figures and insights in the 164 pages.

The latest edition of the annual Internet Trends report includes:
1. Key Internet trends showing slowing Internet user growth but strong smartphone, tablet and mobile data traffic growth as well as rapid growth in mobile advertising.
2. Emerging positive efficiency trends in education and healthcare.
3. High-level trends in messaging, communications, apps and services.
4. Data behind the rapid growth in sensors, uploadable / findable / shareable data, data mining tools, and pattern recognition.
5. Context on the evolution of online video.
6. Observations about online innovation in China

Some notes from my side:

  • Internet Users: <10% Y/Y growth & slowing…fastest growth in more difficult to monetize developing markets like India / Indonesia / Nigeria
  • Smartphone Subscribers: +20% strong growth though slowing…fastest growth in underpenetrated markets like China / India / Brazil / Indonesia
  • Tablets : +52% early stage rapid unit growth
  • Mobile Data Traffic : +81% accelerating growth…video = strong driver
  • Smartphone Users = about 30% of 5.2B Mobile Phone User Base
  • Tablet Units = Growing Faster Than PCs Ever Did… +52%
  • Tablet Users = Loads of Growth Ahead… At 56% of Laptops / 28% of Smartphones / 8% of TVs
  • Population penetration and Global users:
    • TVs 78% / 5.5B
    • Mobile Phone 73% / 5.2B
    • Smartphone 22% / 1.6B
    • Laptop+Desktop 21% / 1.5B
    • Tablet 6% / 0.4B
  • Mobile Usage = Continues to Rise Rapidly… At 25% of Total Web Usage vs. 14% Y/Y
  • Average Revenue per User (ARPU) and Mobile % of Monthly Active User (MAU):
    • Google $45
    • Facebook $7.2 / 79%
    • Twitter $3.6 / 78%
  • Healthcare Realities (USA)
    • Costs Up to 17% of GDP, at $2.8T in 2012, +2x as percent of GDP in 35 years
    • Waste = 27% of Spend, $765B of healthcare spend estimated from excess costs: $210B = unnecessary services; $190B = excess administrative; $55B = missed prevention opportunities; $310B = inefficient delivery of care / fraud / inflated prices (2009)
    • Individual Costs Rising, >25% of family income likely to go to healthcare spending in 2015E vs. 18% in 2005
    • Chronic Conditions = +75% of Spend, Most costly = cancer / diabetes / heart disease / hypertension / stroke…1 in 2 Americans has at least 1 chronic condition, 1 in 4 has 2+
  • Healthcare Realities (part II)
    • Digitization of Healthcare Happening
    • Providers Using Fully Functioning EHR (Electronic Health Record): 84% of Hospitals / Academic / Institutional practices
    • 51% (& rising) of office-based practices
    • Consumers Happy to Communicate via Email: 62% for healthcare concerns
    • Digital Health Venture Investments Rising: +39% Y/Y to $1.9B (2013, USA)
    • Examples:
      • Redbrick Health – employer engagement platform = 4:1 ROI savings per participant
      • Teladoc – employer focused telemedicine platform = $798 savings per consultation vs. office visit & ER over 30 days
      • Mango Health – adherence app = 84% Statin adherence vs. 52% market average
      • WellDoc – chronic disease platform = diabetes app prescription with reimbursement
  • Internet Trifecta = Critical Mass of Content + Community + Commerce
    • 1) Content = Provided by Consumers + Pros
    • 2) Community = Context & Connectivity Created by & for Users
    • 3) Commerce = Products Tagged & Ingested for Seamless Purchase
  • Biggest Re-Imagination of All = People Enabled With Mobile Devices + Sensors Uploading Troves of Findable & Sharable Data
  • More Data + More Transparency = More Patterns & More Complexity
    • Transparency : Instant sharing / communication of many things has potential to make world better / safer place but potential impact to personal privacy will remain on-going challenge
    • Patterns : Mining rising volume of data has potential to yield patterns that help solve basic / previously unsolvable problems but create new challenges related to individual rights
  • Big Data Trends
    • 1) Uploadable / Findable / Sharable / Real-Time Data Rising Rapidly
    • 2) Sensor Use Rising Rapidly
    • 3) Processing Costs Falling Rapidly…While The Cloud Rises
    • 4) Beautiful New User Interfaces – Aided by Data-Generating Consumers – Helping Make Data Usable / Useful
    • 5) Data Mining / Analytics Tools Improving & Helping Find Patterns
    • 6) Early Emergence of Data / Pattern-Driven Problem Solving
  • Photos Alone = 1.8B+ Uploaded & Shared Per Day
  • Costs evolution:
    • Compute Costs Declining = 33% Annually, 1990-2013
    • Storage Costs Declining = 38% Annually, 1992-2013
    • Bandwidth Costs Declining = 27% Annually, 1999-2013
    • Smartphone Costs Declining = 5% Annually, 2008-2013


Management vs. Leadership

I was searching for articles marking the differences between Management and Leadership, after a discussion in the office.

Three interesting ones I’ve found (literature is huge in this area):

  1. Wall Street Journal
  2. changingminds.org
  3. Harvard Business Review

The Wall Street Journal article is stating a book from Warren Bennies listing in a very nice way the main differences:

  • The manager is a copy; the leader is an original.
  • The manager maintains; the leader develops.
  • The manager focuses on systems and structure; the leader focuses on people.
  • The manager relies on control; the leader inspires trust.
  • The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective.
  • The manager asks how and when; the leader asks what and why.
  • The manager has his or her eye always on the bottom line; the leader’s eye is on the horizon.
  • The manager imitates; the leader originates.
  • The manager accepts the status quo; the leader challenges it.
  • The manager is the classic good soldier; the leader is his or her own person.
  • The manager does things right; the leader does the right thing.

This is resonating a lot, isn’t it? ;-)

6 Management Styles

Last week, I was thinking of the 6 different management styles, something I first heard in 2000 during my MBA. Interesting how some topic can pop up in your mind.

Two interesting inputs in Wikipedia and Leadersin Heels.

As a reminder, also for me (!), the 6 categories:

  1. Directive
  2. Authoritative
  3. Affiliative
  4. Participative
  5. Pacesetting
  6. Coaching

My experience still is that you have to consciously chose the best approach depending on the people and the context. No best style!

Apple ne vend plus de produits…

Pour tous ceux qui pensent encore qu’Apple vend des produits (iPhone 6) et ne comprennent pas leur approche "Ecosystème"…

Une très bonne analyse qui nous change des discussions sur la nouvelle "taille de l’écran"

Apple ne vend plus de produits

Pour chaque euro généré par la vente d’un iPhone, combien d’euros sont générés par les musiciens, développeurs, fabricants d’accessoires ou acteurs industriels ? Car même si Apple ne se rémunère que peu sur ce chiffre global (ce n’est pas leur objectif direct), le stabilité générée autour de chacun de leurs produits est proprement phénoménale. Chaque produit Apple est une comète avec une queue de plusieurs km de long, qui donne une assise incomparable sur le marché. Une assise qui stabilise Apple bien au-delà ce qu’un Microsoft ou un Samsung pourrait rêver avoir un jour.

Innoveo joins Pactera!

As some of you already know, we have joined the US/Chinese PacteraGroup since January 1, 2014. Innoveo Solutions will be renamed in Pactera Switzerland, our software product name remains "Innoveo Skye". The whole team remains in Zurich, Switzerland and will be empowered in the coming time. We are very happy to be able to join these 20’000 people company and to profit from Pactera’s Sales und big customers’ base! Our next coming months will be very exciting, also by entering the Asia Pacific markets. Also a very solid constellation for our existing customers.

Comme certains le savent déjà, nous avons décidé de rejoindre le Groupe sino-américain Pactera au 1er janvier 2014. Innoveo Solutions sera renommé Pactera Switzerland, le nom du logiciel reste "Innoveo Skye". Le team reste à Zürich et sera augmenté dans les prochains temps. Nous sommes très heureux de pouvoir nous joindre à ce groupe de plus de 20’000 employés et de profiter de la puissance de vente et des clients existants de Pactera! Les prochains mois s’annoncent plus qu’existants, tout comme les premières acquisitions en Asie. Cette constellation est aussi très intéressante pour nos clients existants.

Press Release English:

Press Release en français:

Seth Godin –The business of Software

via Seth Godin

If you are reading this post, you may know how far I like all the super valuable inputs of Seth Godin. Really inspiring! So, when Seth was publishing a post about the business of software, I was super excited.

First I have learnt that Seth’s first job was to lead a team that created 5 games for …. the Commodore64!!

Some, to my point of view, very interesting abstracts from his post. Although I *really* encourage you to read the whole post (even a bit long, really great!):

[…] Clearly, just writing a piece of software no longer makes it a business.
So if it’s not about avoiding fatal bugs, what’s the business of software?

At its heart, you need to imagine (and then execute) a business that just happens to involve a piece of software, because it’s become clear that software alone isn’t the point. There isn’t a supply issue–it’s about demand. The business of software is now marketing (which includes design). […]

COMMUNICATE TO USERS: As we’ve seen in just about every industry, marketing involves effectively communicating a story about benefits to (and among) the people who will appreciate them. For software entrepreneurs, this means identifying a group of people who need the utility of what you can offer them and who are willing to give you permission to educate them about why they should buy. Without either element, the software is dead. […]

I think niche opportunities for software are largely unexploited. […]

So, the questions I’d ask:

  • Who can I reach?
  • Is the product so remarkable that they will talk about my product with their peers?
  • Can I earn and maintain permission to continue the conversation?
  • Once they learn about the utility offered, will they pay for it? […]

ENABLE COMMUNICATION BETWEEN USERS: This is the holy grail of software. […] The network effect is the increased utility of a device that enables communication. […] If you can improve productivity or satisfaction by connecting people, then people will selfishly help you do your marketing.

When building a software business that uses the network effect, I’d ask:

  • Does the connection this enables create demonstrable value?
  • Is there an easy and obvious way for someone who benefits to recruit someone else to join in?
  • Is it open enough to be easy to use but closed enough to avoid becoming a zero-cost commodity? […]

LAST THING: Paying for it. In a competitive market where the marginal cost of an item is zero, the price will move to and eventually reach zero. […] The goal, then, is to create a dynamic where the market isn’t competitive. […] The other condition that’s necessary, though, is that users have to believe that payment is an option. The web has trained the vast majority that interactions online should be free. That makes the act of selling software, particularly to people who haven’t used it yet, really difficult. There are two ways around this:

  1. Free samples. Many software companies (37signals being an obvious one) have discovered the drug dealer model, in which the software is free for a month, connections are built, utility is created and then it begins to cost money.
  2. Move to a platform where commerce is expected. […] The app store for the iPad is like that. The expectation is that this software is going to cost money. It’s far easier to sell a serious app for the iPad than it is on the web, because the platform is organized around commerce.

[…] I wanted to help you realize that just because you can code something that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. The issues of permission, of networks, of scarcity and of the desire to pay are inherent in the business part of the business of software. […]

Wow, really really impressive analysis!

Demonstrating strength

via Seth Godin

Wow, interesting post from Seth (a while ago, but still ;-). It is about showing (or not) “weakness” to the outside, which is seen for Seth clearly as a strength. Totally agree with that. I don’t like people that are making errors and have issue to apologize. For me, always a first signal of “more coming issues”…

Actually, I agree with *every* point mentioned, even if there are not always *easy* to implement ;-) But who says it should be easy?


Defer to others

Avoid shortcuts

Tell the truth

Offer kindness

Seek alliances

Volunteer to take the short straw

Choose the long-term, sacrificing the short

Demonstrate respect to all, not just the obviously strong

Share credit and be public in your gratitude

Risking the appearance of weakness takes strength. And the market knows it.

And I’m still convinced you can run your business well *and* follow these kind of rules!

Fear of conflict?

via Jeff Bussgang

Excellent post from Jeff concerning dysfunctioning teams, based on a book from P. Lencioni – Five disfucntions of a Team. Patrick Lencioni lists the five main issues that can araise within a team, and how to combat them:

  1. Inattention to Results
  2. Avoidance of Accountability
  3. Lack of Commitment
  4. Fear of Conflict
  5. Absence of Trust

Jeff is then emphasizing the impact of fearing confllicts within an organization.

[…] Again and again, I see management teams and boards of directors shy away from conflict. It is quite natural for humans to avoid conflict.  In fact, our deeply programmed “fight or flight” instincts are designed to protect ourselves and run away when we sense danger.  Interpersonal conflict is a danger we all prefer to avoid as it makes us uncomfortable. […]

Here are a few techniques I’ve found help address this issue, particularly in start-ups. [more information in the post]

  1. Building Trust
  2. Annual Reviews
  3. Systematic Post Mortems
  4. Go Direct

[…] Conflict can be stressful, draining and uncomfortable.  Yet, it is incredibly natural, healthy part of life, particularly in a start-up.  And creating a culture that can handle conflict effectively clearly has a positive impact on performance.

Whole post is definitely worth a read ;-)