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On the Brink

On the Brink

It's True: Blockchain Is The Future, Especially In the Construction Industry

On May 14, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, blockchain, technological innovation



I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by ConstructechTV host Peggy Smedley about blockchain and its implications for the construction industry. It was such an interesting conversation that I want to share it with you :

Blockchain: much more than a trend

As I tell Peggy, blockchain is not a passing fad. Its where the world is moving, whether it's building buildings or securing our food supply chain or paying our taxes. A report from International Data Protection (IDC) has projected that global blockchain spending will reach $2.9 billion by the end of 2019, nearly doubling the $1.5 billion amount spent in all of 2018. That's a tremendous increase in just one year, clearly indicating that something big is going on. 

Possibly nowhere is the power and potential of blockchain more evident than in the construction industry. As more and more companies recognize that blockchain is the most secure way to make transactions, more are adopting it, from general contractors at the beginning of a project to buyers and sellers of the finished property.

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The Most Successful Under 40 Women Entrepreneurs

On Mar 12, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, women in business, women entrepreneurs

Finally, "female CEO" is not an oxymoron. 

Yes, women entrepreneurs have come a long way over the past several decades, but it wasn't so long ago that they had little to no influence in the business sector. Scores of women have changed all that but one who stands out as one of the first is Brownie Wise, a single mom who helped build a plastic food-storage empire known as Tupperware. Talk about a Blue Ocean strategic thinker!

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What Can We Learn From The Mistakes We Make?

On Feb 12, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Culture Change, business change

 
To err is human!

As we have all experienced (sometimes painfully), mistakes are an essential part of life. They're how we learn and grow and accomplish things.

Consider this: When toddlers are learning to walk, they stand, take a step and fall down. Then they get back up and try again, and again. Before long, they've mastered control of their bodies and they're off, rarely crawling again. This is also how we learn mastery as adults—we try something, fail, learn from it and try again. Just like little kids, this is how we grow.

The Mistake-Learn-Grow Relationship Stays With Us Throughout Our Lives.

Everyone makes mistakes, every single one of us. There's a big difference, however, between those who can learn from their mistakes and those who can't. I would even offer that the secret to success is knowing how to treat mistakes as a foundation for future achievements. The sooner you learn to capitalize upon, rather than avoid, your mistakes, the sooner you'll grasp the crucial knowledge that can be gained from them. Then you can move on to new decisions, and probably new mistakes, which is also at the heart of the fast-growing concept fast failure.

Why Do We Make Mistakes?

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Want to Change Your Organization's Culture? Try the OCAI!

On Oct 18, 2018 11:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Andrea Simon, Culture Change, ocai-online, Corporate Culture, business culture

 

I have had so many requests for help using the Organizational Culture Assessment Instrument, the OCAI, that it seemed timely to tell you more about this great method and tool for evaluating your culture today and what you would like it to become in the future (www.ocai-online.com).

A business, by definition, needs to be in a constant state of motion. If you want to grow and succeed in the market, you need to always be moving forward. The same can be said for organizational culture. In both cases, change is the driving force that can help your organization reach its goals and fulfill your ambitions.

Why is corporate culture important?

Understanding organizational culture is hard, and changing it is even harder. But it is the essence of what your organization is all about. In order to implement meaningful change inside your business, you will have to look inward and evaluate your current culture. Only then is it possible to determine where you want to go from there and create a strategy that can help you reach your destination.

Fortunately, recent developments in understanding and improving organizational culture have created new methods that can help you achieve change. One such method is the OCAI and here is how you can use it to implement change in your organization.

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Want To Save the World? Women Entrepreneurs Are Already Doing It!

On Aug 16, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, women in business, women entrepreneurs

Have you heard of the “third billion?” Even if you haven't, you're definitely going to feel their impact. “Third billion” describes a billion women from emerging markets who are going to join the global economy as entrepreneurs, employers and employees over the next decade. From Turkey to India, women entrepreneurs are taking leading roles in this global shift, transforming their local economies and their communities. Oh and in the process, changing the world.

Case in point: The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor study looked at 59 economies around the world and found that women are creating businesses at a higher and faster rate than men in three economies, and at a nearly equal rate in four others. Specifically, the startup rates by gender are comparable in Brazil, Ecuador, Switzerland and Uganda, and in Nigeria, Ghana and Thailand, the rate of new women entrepreneurs is higher than that of men. In the remaining 52 economies, the proportions of men startups are higher than women, in some cases, up to six times higher.

This is excellent news on a global scale as it signals a growing positive trend. After decades of legislative, policy and socio-cultural changes that have empowered women by supporting and training them, the world is finally placing women in leading business roles.

Not only transforming economies but communities too

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When Was the Last Time You Really Looked at Your Business?

On Apr 12, 2018 8:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Andrea Simon, Change Management, Culture Change, business change, business leadership

When was the last time you looked at your business with fresh eyes? Maybe it is ready for some significant changes? How would you know? How would you make them happen? As we often tell our clients "If you want to change, have a crisis or create one." If not, very little gets done. But the pressures to change are accelerating. People really hate to change. What to do?

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The Time is Right for Businesses to Hire Anthropologists

On Apr 3, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Corporate Culture, anthropology, business change, business leadership

 Anthropologists seem convinced that no one wants to hire them. With very low unemployment and almost 6 million jobs going unfilled in the U.S. today, shouldn’t highly-skilled, well-trained and capable anthropologists be able to find work of some kind that’s related to their education and interests?

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Why Pay Parity Is Good For Business

On Feb 8, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Culture Change, corporate anthropologist, business change

Did you know that in Iceland, it's the law that men and women must earn the same pay? That's right. Iceland just announced (the first country in the world to do so) that public and private companies must pay men and women in the same positions equally or pay a fine. Wow, what if that could happen here in the U.S.!

As a corporate anthropologist and culture change expert, I thought this warranted a closer look. I started digging into the subject and what I've found is that not only is pay parity timely and necessary and the right thing to do, it's also good for business.

I was asked recently by American Express OPEN Forum for my input in this area, along with several other CEOs and business founders. (Read the article here) Interestingly, we all expressed the same belief: that equal pay is important to the health of a business. Consider these eight points, discussed in the AmEx article:

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Can A Little Anthropology Help Your School Change?

On Feb 7, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Rachel Carney

, Culture Change, corporate anthropologist, anthropology, culture, change, school culture

 

When I started writing this blog, I was interested in how schools use anthropology and its observational research methods. I wasn't curious about how schools were teaching anthropology, but how they applied its theory, methods and tools to help address the significant issues of climate and cultural changes. As I scanned the research trying to find how anthropologists help schools change, grow and improve, I came to the realization that anthropologists are not being used to help schools. But quite frankly, they should be!

So how can anthropologists help our schools?

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Need To Change Your Organization's Culture? 6 Best Ways To Do It.

On Feb 6, 2018 6:30:28 AM

/ Andrea Simon

, Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Corporate Culture

 

As many of you know, I love talking about anthropology—specifically, how corporate leaders can apply its tools and methodology to bring about culture change, greater success and bigger profits. But, change is hard. In many cases, change is literally pain. The brain actually fights it, which is why real, lasting change is so difficult to come by. As a culture change expert, I see this all the time with clients. But the good news is that yes, change can happen! And with a little guidance, you can actually make it stick. Yes, indeed you can drive change.

In my recent interview with Thomas Fox, these concepts are exactly what we talked aboutanthropology and culture change and how each influences the other. As I explained to him, in a corporate setting, leaders espouse values, beliefs and expectations so people know what to do and how to get it done. Everything is fine until something begins to change and then that culture must change, too.

But knowing how to "do" culture change can be tricky. To help businesses achieve success, I offered the following six steps (abbreviated here):

6 steps for achieving successful culture change

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