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Business & Finance
World Stock Market
HP has themed its exhibit at drupa 2012 “Print Your Future". The company will showcase a new portfolio of digital printing solutions, workflow solutions, business-development resources and financing options all designed to help print service providers (PSPs) achieve profitable growth.
"The 'Print Your Future' theme reflects our promise to help PSP customers create a relevant and profitable future of print," said Christopher Morgan, senior vice-president, Graphics Solutions Business, HP. "Our strongest ever drupa portfolio will benefit customers for the print jobs they do today as well as those of tomorrow."
The 4,952 square meter HP stand(Hall 4 of Messe Düsseldorf) will feature printing demonstrations for general commercial, photo specialty, publishing, direct mail and transactional applications as well as labels, flexible packaging and folding cartons, and signs and displays.
HP will demonstrate 10 digital printing systems from the HP Indigo, HP Inkjet Web Press, HP Scitex and HP Specialty Printing Systems product lines which will be featured in end-to-end production workflows alongside HP partner software and finishing solutions.
The drupa exhibit will also show server and software solutions from the HP Exstream, HP Hiflex and HP SmartStream portfolios and print output from its systems in real-life settings, such as supermarkets and bookstores.
HP's exhibit includes a full complement of educational modules, business tools, community networks, market development activities and one-to-one consulting services delivered through the HP Capture business-development programme.
The HP Capture programme's educational services provide in-depth workshops delivered by leading independent experts and HP professionals. Several new workshops are being launched at the exhibition covering digital sales and marketing techniques for label converters and large format printers.
HP Capture, combined with the Digital Solutions Cooperative (Dscoop), offers a comprehensive business-development and education programmes for the graphics industry. Founded in 2005 for HP graphics customers in North America, Dscoop has grown to include regional chapters for the Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific and Japan regions. With more than 7,000 members, HP says Dscoop is the industry's largest independent user community.
HP Financial Services, the company's leasing and life cycle asset-management services division, will be onsite, providing finance solutions for HP systems, software and services, as well as for third-party hardware and software.
HP will also announce the results of its worldwide Print Excellence Awards programme. Winners from the contest's 21 categories - from personalised marketing collateral to labels and packaging to display signage - will be recognised during a May 3rd Celebration Evening in their honour. Print Excellence Awards winning entries will be showcased on the HP stand at drupa.
More information on HP's drupa exhibit is available at www.hp.com/go/drupa
Copyright © 2012, DPNLIVE – All Rights Reserved
Mike Myatt, Contributor
I write about leadership myths, and bust them one-by–one.
It is simply impossible to become a great leader without being a great communicator. I hope you noticed the previous sentence didn’t refer to being a great talker – big difference. The key to becoming a skilful communicator is rarely found in what has been taught in the world of academia. From our earliest days in the classroom we are trained to focus on enunciation, vocabulary, presence, delivery, grammar, syntax and the like. In other words, we are taught to focus on ourselves. While I don’t mean to belittle these things as they’re important to learn, it’s the more subtle elements of communication rarely taught in the classroom (the elements that focus on others), which leaders desperately need to learn. It is the ability to develop a keen external awareness that separates the truly great communicators from those who muddle through their interactions with others. In today’s column I’ll share a few of the communication traits, which if used consistently, will help you achieve better communication results.
I don’t believe it comes as any great surprise that most leaders spend the overwhelming majority of their time each day in some type of an interpersonal situation. I also don’t believe it comes as a great shock to find a large number of organizational problems occurs as a result of poor communications. It is precisely this paradox that underscores the need for leaders to focus on becoming great communicators. Effective communication is an essential component of professional success whether it is at the interpersonal, intergroup, intragroup, organizational, or external level. While developing an understanding of great communication skills is easier than one might think, being able to appropriately draw upon said skills when the chips are down is not always as easy as one might hope for.
Skills acquired and/or knowledge gained is only valuable to the extent they can be practically applied when called for. It has been my experience that the number one thing great communicators have in common is that they possess a heightened sense of situational and contextual awareness. The best communicators are great listeners and observers. Great communicators are skilled a reading a person/group by sensing the moods, dynamics, attitudes, values and concerns of those being communicated with. Not only do they read they environment well, but they possess the uncanny ability to adapt their messaging to said environment without missing a beat. The message is not about the messenger; it has nothing to do with messenger; it is however 100% about meeting the needs and the expectations of those you’re communicating with.
So how do you know when your skills have matured to the point that you’ve become an excellent communicator? The answer is you’ll have reached the point where your interactions with others consistently use the following ten principles:
1. Speak not with a forked tongue: In most cases, people just won’t open up those they don’t trust. When people have a sense a leader is worthy of their trust they will invest time and take risks in ways they would not if their leader had a reputation built upon poor character or lack of integrity. While you can attempt to demand trust it rarely works. Trust is best created by earning it with right acting, thinking, and decision. Keep in mind that people will forgive many things where trust exists, but will rarely forgive anything where trust is absent.
2. Get personal: There is great truth in the axiom that states: “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Classic business theory tells leaders to stay at arms length. I say stay at arms length if you want to remain in the dark receiving only highly sanitized versions of the truth. If you don’t develop meaningful relationships with people you’ll never know what’s really on their mind until it’s too late to do anything about it.
3. Get specific: Specificity is better than Ambiguity 11 times out of 10: Learn to communicate with clarity. Simple and concise is always better than complicated and confusing. Time has never been a more precious commodity than it is in today’s marketplace. It is critical you know how to cut to the chase and hit the high points, and that you expect the same from others. Without understanding the value of brevity and clarity it is unlikely that you’ll ever be afforded the opportunity to get to the granular level as people will tune you out long before you ever get there. Your goal is to weed out the superfluous and to make your words count.
4. Focus on the leave-behinds not the take-aways: The best communicators develop the ability to get the information they need while leaving the other party feeling as if they got more out of the conversation than you did. While you can accomplish this by being disingenuous, that is not the goal. When you truly focus more on contributing more than receiving, you will have accomplished the goal. Even though this may seem counter-intuitive, by intensely focusing on the other party’s wants, needs and desires, you’ll learn far more than you ever would by focusing on your agenda.
5. Have an open mind: I’ve often said that the rigidity of a closed mind is the single greatest limiting factor of new opportunities. A leader takes their game to a whole new level the minute they willingly seek out those who hold dissenting opinions and opposing positions with the goal not of convincing them to change their minds, but with the goal of understanding what’s on their mind. I’m always amazed at how many people are truly fearful of opposing views, when what they should be is genuinely curious and interested. Open dialogs with those who confront you, challenge you, stretch you, and develop you. Remember that it’s not the opinion that matters, but rather the willingness to discuss it with an open mind and learn.
6. Shut-up and listen: Great leaders know when to dial it up, dial it down, and dial it off (mostly down and off). Simply broadcasting your message ad nauseum will not have the same result as engaging in meaningful conversation, but this assumes that you understand that the greatest form of discourse takes place within a conversation, and not a lecture or a monologue. When you reach that point in your life where the light bulb goes off, and you begin to understand that knowledge is not gained by flapping your lips, but by removing your ear wax, you have taken the first step to becoming a skilled communicator.
7. Replace ego with empathy: I have long advised leaders not to let their ego write checks that their talent can’t cash. When candour is communicated with empathy & caring and not the prideful arrogance of an over inflated ego good things begin to happen. Empathetic communicators display a level of authenticity and transparency that is not present with those who choose to communicate behind the carefully crafted facade propped-up by a very fragile ego. Understanding the communication principle is what helps turn anger into respect and doubt into trust.
8. Read between the lines: Take a moment and reflect back on any great leader that comes to mind… you’ll find they are very adept at reading between the lines. They have the uncanny ability to understand what is not said, witnessed, or heard. Being a leader should not be viewed as a license to increase the volume of rhetoric. Rather astute leaders know that there is far more to be gained by surrendering the floor than by filibustering. In this age of instant communication, everyone seems to be in such a rush to communicate what’s on their mind that they fail to realize everything to be gained from the minds of others. Keep your eyes & ears open and your mouth shut and you’ll be amazed at how your level or organizational awareness is raised.
9. When you speak, know what you’re talking about: Develop a technical command over your subject matter. If you don’t possess subject matter expertise, few people will give you the time of day. Most successful people have little interest in listening to those individuals who cannot add value to a situation or topic, but force themselves into a conversation just to hear themselves speak. The fake it until you make it days have long sense passed, and for most people I know fast and slick equals not credible. You’ve all heard the saying “it’s not what you say, but how you say it that matters,” and while there is surely an element of truth in that statement, I’m here to tell you that it matters very much what you say. Good communicators address both the “what” and “how” aspects of messaging so they don’t fall prey to becoming the smooth talker who leaves people with the impression of form over substance.
10. Speak to groups as individuals: Leaders don’t always have the luxury of speaking to individuals in an intimate setting. Great communicators can tailor a message such that they can speak to 10 people in a conference room or 10,000 people in an auditorium and have them feel as if they were speaking directly to each one of them as an individual. Knowing how to work a room and establish credibility, trust, and rapport are keys to successful interactions.
11. Bonus – Be prepared to change the message if needed: Another component of communications strategy that is rarely discussed is how to prevent a message from going bad, and what to do when does. It’s called being prepared and developing a contingency plan. Again, you must keep in mind that for successful interactions to occur, your objective must be in alignment with those you are communicating with. If your expertise, empathy, clarity, etc. don’t have the desired effect, which by the way is very rare, you need to be able to make an impact by changing things up on the fly. Use great questions, humour, stories, analogies, relevant data, and where needed, bold statements to help connect and engender the confidence and trust that it takes for people to want to engage. While it is sometimes necessary to “Shock and Awe” this tactic should be reserved as a last resort.
Don’t assume someone is ready to have a particular conversation with you just because you’re ready to have the conversation with them. Spending time paving the way for a productive conversation is far better than coming off as the proverbial bull in a china shop. Furthermore, you cannot assume anyone knows where you’re coming from if you don’t tell them. I never ceased to be amazed at how many people assume everyone knows what they want to occur without ever finding it necessary to communicate their objective. If you fail to justify your message with knowledge, business logic, reason, empathy etc., you will find that said message will likely fall on deaf ears needing reinforcement or clarification afterward.
Bottom line – The leadership lesson here is whenever you have a message to communicate (either directly, or indirectly through a third party) make sure said message is true & correct, well reasoned, and substantiated by solid business logic that is specific, consistent, clear and accurate. Spending a little extra time on the front-end of the messaging curve will likely save you from considerable aggravation and brain damage on the back-end. Most importantly of all, keep in mind that communication is not about you, your opinions, your positions or your circumstances. It’s about helping others by meeting their needs, understanding their concerns, and adding value to their world. Do these things and you’ll drastically reduce the number of communications problems you’ll experience moving forward.
Your Thoughts Please!
Follow me on Twitter @MikeMyatt
By John Twohig
Co-Founder of Ahain Group
30 March 2012
When Muthar Kent the new CEO announced in 2008 that Coca-Cola sales had to double by the year 2020 I would guess that the executives were checking the calendar, but it wasn’t April fools day.
Kent’s predecessor Neville Isdell had identified that Coca-Cola had become stagnated, inward looking and arrogant. He had started the process to open up the company by inviting 400 top overseas executives and Coca-Colas bottling partners to discuss how they had gotten into this position. Muthar Kent’s growth initiative was the next step in re-establishing Coca-Cola as an innovative, risk taking organisation, where risk taking is now becoming the life blood of the company.
Kent’s announcement reminds me of the Henry Ford story, when he told his engineers that he wanted a 8 cylinder engine on one block, they said it couldn’t done. Ford was unmoved and demanded they produce it. Failure after failure followed but Ford kept sending the engineers back until eventually 18 months later they succeeded and produced the V8 engine, the most popular engine in motoring history. Maybe Kent had taken a similar stance.
Included in Kent’s demand was the US market, the executives told him that Coca-Cola were maxed out in their home market. Kent again disagreed and told them find away to deliver his vision. There followed a clear-out of those who were blocking the path and it was clear that a new marketing model with-in Coca-Cola was needed to achieve these ambitious demands.
How to deliver objectives
In 2007 Coca-Cola spent 3% of it’s marketing budget online. This was about to change radically, enter Jonathan Mildenhall and his marketing team.
“All advertisers need a lot more content so that they can keep the engagement with consumers fresh and relevant, because of the 24/7 connectivity. If you’re going to be successful around the world, you have to have fat and fertile ideas at the core.”
The online budget is now 20% and rising, at the end of 2011 Cola-Cola where on target for their projected growth even in the US market. How has this being achieved?
Developing the Strategy
Content marketing online has being the key to this growth. Coca-Cola have had a tradition of telling great stories thru it’s advertising. The “Holidays are Coming” advert, springs to mind immediately. Coca-Cola recognise that story telling is a tradition in every country and ethnic culture world wide.The trick is to create contagious content which would earn Coca-Cola a disproportionate amount of reaction and discussion across all channels and platforms.
These two YouTube links are cartoon videos explaining how the online campaign works and the strategy behind the content creation and distribution.
Overall, the videos are twenty minutes long and contain the entire creative content strategy to achieve the correct result for Event 2020. Outside of being compulsive and required viewing, they pose a great question, why? Why have Cola-Cola posted these on YouTube for all to see?
- it is part of online culture to share, it lends to the authenticity, which is central to Coca-Colas online policy.
- by posting the strategy Coca-Cola are creating a conversation, part of the disproportionate discussion they are trying to achieve.
- these were up-loaded in August 2011, 2 years after the plans inception, so the opposition are already 2 years behind Coca-Cola, you can be sure Mildenhall and his team have already raised the bar internally.
With approximately 500 products spread all over the globe, Mildenhall and his online marketing team set about developing a strategy which allowed them to leverage this vast resource. They also spent a lot of time reviewing data, which they refer to as the new soil. One major advantage to online marketing, it allows greater in-debt access to metrics. These metrics are a rich and fertile source for the development of strategy.
They also recognised that they did not have to create all the content on their own. By listening to their community they knew they would receive ideas as part of the discussions. It was also accepted that mistakes would be made, particularly when they are talking risks. This acceptance is crucial as it frees the creatives, allows them to work with-out fear.
Fanta is big brand within the Coca-Cola stable and they ran a advertising campaign featuring a cartoon girl at a party walking into a clear glass wall. To recover from the embarrassment, she starts to mime and she becomes the main attraction at the party.
A good advert but then comes a spoof of the advert, a man with a beard dressed the same way as the cartoon Fanta girl, making all the same moves. Both were a huge success.
Deciding on a 70%>20%>10% break down of content
The marketers in Cola-Cola operate to a 70>20>10 break down. The whole Fanta campaign has over ten 30/35 second adverts which are based around the Fanta girls and guys having fun, this is the bread and butter 70%. The spoof mime advert is in the 20%, which has some risk and will become part of the 70% in time. They also ran some interesting gorilla type stunts such as the link below, this is in the 10% group, lots of risk.
This campaign shows that dynamic story telling does work and it can be risky, the man in the spoof advert has a beard and is dressed as a women. Not every large organisation like Coca-Cola would allow such risk taking. Muthar Kent actively promotes the concept of being “constructively discontent” among his marketing executives. Mildenhall finds this concept very liberating as the result thus far show.
Overall, an incredible online content marketing initiative, embracing new tools and channels by one of the world’s biggest brands. Coca-Cola have moved from being inward looking and arrogant, to being one of the world leading examples of a Social Business, using cutting edge online strategies. Not many large corporations could achieve this pivot in such a short time frame.
We have a wait to see if they achieve their overall goal, one thing is already clear, over two years into a ten year plan and Coca-Cola are very happy with the progress
Copyright © 2012, DPNLIVE – All Rights Reserved
The Business World and Environment so much more to day than before needs to use the services of a Technical Editor and Technical Writer because in business today Communication is KING.
I am not writing this as a means to attract business to my company although it would be beneficial. I am writing this as a very concerned Technical Editor and Technical Writer, the standard of English and Writing has dropped dramatically over the last ten years. Much of this is due to inadequacies in the education systems across the world. A lot of it is due to the abbreviated (new) language the young are using to talk to each other. As a qualified Technical Editor and Technical Writer I really want to do something about the standard of spoken and written English and native languages across the world.
I was taught how to construct a sentence using complete words and how to speak them properly (well sort of). As time went on I learnt how to use abbreviations in speech and in writing but so people who listened to me and read what I had written could understand everything I said. Today I find it very disturbing to listen to the young and when I use a dictionary, which is frequently, to see that shortened and newly invented words are creeping in. ‘Why Oh Why’ is the establishment letting this happen?
Yes I maybe a bit of a Traditionalist but I also embrace the twenty first century I just hate badly spoken and written language. I am calling on every Government Education Department in every country in the world to take a big challenge. We have to teach our young how to use language properly and that also goes for any second or third languages. Language is a very beautiful thing and I think it is being destroyed by shortening and un-necessary abbreviation. I want to start a campaign in Ireland for better language in both English and Irish.
I see language as our sole and most important method of communicating with all our neighbours in Europe and through out the world and with everyone in business. To do this those in power and in business at all levels should have the highest of standards. When I hear people talking in what has become HORRIBLY KNOWN AS “TEXT SPEAK” I cringe when I receive a text that uses “TEXT SPEAK”; I feel I have to go and find a Translator to put it into proper English. In my view “TEXT SPEAK” should be banned.
Business is based a huge amount on trust and understanding of what the person writing or talking is saying to you. Business survives on this principle and I see at this moment trust and understanding disappearing at a very high speed. As a Technical Editor and Technical Writer I think it is part of our duty as Professionally Qualified Communicators to step forward and help sort this serious problem out. Our Teachers and Lecturers are exceptionally good, don’t get me wrong, but Communicating is such a complex topic. It is unfair to expect them to be able to teach every topic. In my view qualified Technical Editors and Technical Writers should be brought in to Secondary School, Third Level Colleges, Institutes of Technology and Universities they should be used to work with English Teachers and Lecturers to explain the intricacies of English and Irish and to show what good and bad language can do for understanding and business.
As part of learning to speak our native language we are all taught Grammar (now mine may not be the best) but it seems when we leave school all that has been taught is instantly forgotten. Business needs to not accept badly written and produced documents whether it is an e-mail or a Installation Manual for a complex piece of equipment and here I include Mobile Phone Handbooks and Television Set Up Handbooks and also reports for or from government and business, this also applies to Requests for Tender produced by government and private companies.
So why should Business and Industry use a Technical Editor or Technical Writer? A Technical Editor will look at documents and they are able to understand how to make them easier and clearer for the end user to read and use. A Technical Writer will write and format a document and insert any graphics or photographs into the document. So what are the definitions of a Technical Editor and Technical Writer?
The definition of a Technical Editor “An Editor carries out these tasks and often many more. When editing manually or on line he/she would check grammar and spelling, company style, collect contributions from write, authors, photographers, graphic artists, ensure everything is complete. An editor would handle related clerical work judge technical or scientific merit of documents. An editor should also determine suitability of material for target audience in the following areas organisation, presentation, word use, illustrations, comprehensibility, completeness and correctness retrievability and be involved from planning to completion.”
The definition of a Technical Writer is “A Technical Writer puts scientific and technical information into easily understandable language. They prepare operating and maintenance manuals, catalogues, parts list assembly instructions sales promotion materials and project proposals. Technical writers also plan and edit technical reports and oversee preparation of illustrations, photographs diagrams and charts.”
A company in this ever increasingly aware society and supposedly better educated population should have no hesitation about employing a specialist to prepare all of their documents. This is becoming so much more essential as if and when a company fails if information is not in writing judgements can go against you. Now if a company cannot afford to employ a Technical Editor or a Technical Writer on a full time basis because of financial constraints I think they should have no hesitation about considering outsourcing to a company that can carry out those types of services.
Finally it is my considered and strong belief that in modern business communications is a very poor relation and is very low on the agenda for much of business. Some how this has to be addressed and I at this moment in time am not to sure how this could be achieved. I certainly feel that it is something that has to happen and very quickly. I will add that I personally think that all text speak should be band and any that has reached our dictionaries should immediately be taken out. All of our children and the generations that follow should and must be taught how to communicate properly using their own language as it is and was designed to be.
Copyright © 2012, DPNLIVE – All Rights Reserved
Right now you may be sitting in an office, a coffee shop, bus, train, waiting room or even at home. Cast your eyes around the room. Is there a fire extinguisher nearby? And have you ever wondered what is in those red cylinders? Well it may surprise you to find that there are several types available with different uses for different fire risks. An emergency situation, you’ll agree, is not the time to learn that you have the wrong extinguisher in your hand. So read on.
Extinguishers fall into two categories: safe to use on electrical fires; and not for use on electrical fires. Their contents include carbon dioxide (CO2), powder, AFFF foam, and water and wet chemical.
The CO2 and the dry powder extinguishers are best suited for electrical risks, while the AFFF foam (aqueous film forming foam) extinguisher and water are for more combustible materials (wood, paper and so on – Class A materials). Foam is also suitable for burning liquids such as oils, petrol, diesel (never use a water extinguisher on liquid or electrical fires).
Nowadays in Ireland all portable fire extinguishers are red with a visible colour code to identify contents. All extinguishers sold here pass a high standard set by Europe. European standard EN 3 specifies requirements for portable fire extinguishers  and compliance is legally required for the construction of all fire extinguishers in the EU.
These have to do with description, duration of operation, tightness, dielectric test, tamping test, special provisions construction, resistance to pressure, mechanical tests, etc.
Fire Extinguisher Types
Water Extinguisher (Red label)
- Do not use fires involving electricity or flammable liquids.
- Suitable for use on Class A fires.
- Aim at base of fire.
Dry powder extinguisher (Blue label)
- Use on small fires in flammable liquids.
- Gives no protection against re-ignition.
- Suitable for use on Class A, B, C, D and E fires.
Foam Extinguishers (Cream label)
- Do not use on fires involving electricity.
- Can be used on fires in flammable liquids.
- Suitable for use in Class A and Class B fires.
Carbon Dioxide or CO2 Extinguishers (Black label)
- Suitable for use on Class B, C & E fires.
- Use with caution in confined spaces.
Wet Chemical Extinguishers (Yellow label)
- Use on burning oils and deep fat fryers (normally used in retail/commercial outlets).
- Chip pan or pot fires can be eliminated by smothering the supply of oxygen to the fire by placing a fire blanket over the pan or pot.
- Class A flammable solids such as wood, paper, cloth.
- Class B flammable liquids or liquefiable solids such as petrol, grease, diesel, acetone etc.
- Class C flammable gases such as butane, propane, methane etc.
- Class D flammable gases such as magnesium, potassium, sodium etc.
- Class E fires involving electricity or electrical appliances.
- Class F cooking oil fires.
Classification of Fires
When a building is being accessed for fire risks Class A is the first risk to be identified. In most offices, schools, places of work most of the objects are made from wood, paper, plastic such as furniture, curtains, carpets.
Any petrol, diesel, paints are Class B.
Gas appliances such as boilers are deemed Class C
Then more specific risks are looked at, such as computers, machinery, comms rooms, for an Electrical Classification
Deep fat fryers & industrial chip pans fall under Class F.
Remember fire extinguishers are placed for your own safety and to minimise the spread of fire throughout the building. Ireland’s fire extinguishers are installed serviced and maintained in accordance with I.S. 291/ I.S. EN 3/ BS. 5306 standards. Keep safe and remember never give fire a chance.
Copyright © 2011, DPNLIVE – All Rights Reserved