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Bricks And Mortar Vs Online: Can Retro Beat New Age?

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The statistics don’t make for positive reading material if you are bricks and mortar store. In 2016, 1.61bn sales were made via the World Wide Web. In the same year, online sales accounted for $1.9tn and the figure is set to rise to $4tn by 2020. In 2021, the global retail sales from eCommerce sites are due to hit 15.5%. A store owner reading this would be forgiven for shutting up shop and abandoning ship. Fighting back seems impossible, so why try?

The answer is simple: not all physical stores close. Here are the ways they are beating the online revolution and how you can too.

Join Them

Walmart is officially the biggest business on the planet with total revenue of $482bn per year. Quite an eye-raising amount even compared to Russian oligarchs and Chinese steel companies. What is just as shocking is the fact that a corporation the size of the Walmart Group couldn’t resist the digital revolution. Instead of dismissing it as a fad, the savvy bosses got in line and developed an eCommerce site which contributes to their yearly earnings. If the biggest business in the world has to adapt, so do SMBs, vintage stores, and boutiques.

Be Fast And Convenient

There’s a myth that online shopping is the quickest form of retail therapy. Heading to the checkout and paying for goods is easy but there is still a wait. Even next day delivery means customers have to go out of their way to receive a product. Fast food companies exploit this by providing the quickest and most convenient service in town. Burger King, Subway, and Dominos are pretty much served to the consumer within minutes of ordering. Lines and long waits are just two reasons people shop at home. To combat it, you have to focus on speed as well as quality.

Analyze Real Estate

One area where websites succeed is cost cutting. They don’t need a lot of things, but the most important omission is a building. Their lack of rent means the company can spend the money on other areas of the firm. You can’t because a workspace is essential, but you can cut the costs. Again looking to the fast-food industry, McDonald’s invest in prefab metal buildings to increase sales and revenue. As they fit together seamlessly, the franchises don’t have to wait long to make money. Simply bartering over the price with the landlord is a straightforward way to secure a great deal.

Don’t Mass Produce

Spotify doesn’t have SKU numbers, which means its service isn’t mass produced. There are rivals, but Apple Music and Tidal are rip-offs of the original. And that is the appropriate word to keep in mind. An SKU number implies the product or service is easy to find throughout the industry, and that is bad for business. There needs to be a legitimate reason to lure people out of their digital den which is where innovation comes into play. Locally sourced or handmade products won’t be available anywhere else, even on the cyber highway.

Can bricks and mortar beat new age? It’s not easy but it’s doable. What do you think?

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Student @ Advanced Digital Sciences Center, Singapore. Travelled to 30+ countries, passion for basketball.

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Silence Is a Virtue: 6 Things You Must Never Say After a Car Accident

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flickr/sylvar

Following a car accident, we usually experience a rush of adrenaline that makes us tremble. Everything seems to be moving very fast, and in those moments, your actions mean a lot. However, what you say is very important as well. What comes out of your mouth at the scene can influence how the ensuing claims and damages are handled. Here are six things you should never speak after a car accident.

  1. “Everything’s fine, I can just go.”

Of course, not every car accident results in major damage and injuries. In these cases, you or the other driver may push the idea that you can both just call it even and leave. Never do this under any circumstances. Always insist on exchanging information and making a police report.

  1. “I am so sorry.”

Even when you’re not at fault, you might issue an apology, simply because accidents are tough on everyone involved. You really shouldn’t ever say this, as those who hear it can take it to mean you’re responsible for the accident. No matter what goes down, save your apologies for later.

  1. “I’m not injured.”

That adrenaline rush you get after an accident can mask pain. Even if your body isn’t coursing with adrenaline, there are many kinds of injuries one can sustain in an accident whose symptoms aren’t immediately apparent. If you’ve been in an accident, go to the ER to be checked over, and if an ache or anything else does arise in the following days, get to a doctor right away.

  1. “This is all my fault.”

You think you know what happened, and you’re pretty sure you’re to blame. Not so fast, there. You might be surprised what comes up during an investigation. It’s not unheard of for a person who thought an accident was their fault to learn that the other party was the one who actually violated traffic laws. In the same vein, don’t say anything which sounds like an explanation or excuse for your perceived errors.

  1. “I can’t be sure, but I think…”

The reason we shouldn’t try and explain how things happened from our perspective is because right now, it’s important to stick to basic facts. If your account differs from everyone else’s, it will make you look like the party who has something to hide. Only share information that couldn’t be construed differently by anyone else in that situation.

  1. “I can handle this myself.”

Chances are, you don’t know the person you collided with. You don’t know what they’ll say, do, or claim a week from now, even if they’re being very calm and collected immediately after the incident. You also don’t want to tangle with their insurance company alone. Hiring an auto accident lawyer is the best way to ensure fair end results.

So, what should you say? After an accident, you should ask all parties involved if they’re okay, and call for help as quickly as possible. You should provide accurate, up-to-date information about yourself. From there, make your interactions with police and insurance companies as simple and fact-based as you can, until you can get your attorney on the case.

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If you would want to build your own company, what would you need?

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First of all you should have an idea. The next step, I guess, would be to have a business plan. That’s more or less an estimation of what your idea is going to cost you and studying all the laws you have to obey to be able to pursue your idea. Then you are going to need investors. I think that is the hardest part. You have to convince them that you have a good enough product to give money to, but not so good, that they want to take it away from you. And that, my friends, is a very delicate line to balance.

But let’s say your dreams come true, and somebody gives you money…. Now we have an obligation to a third party. You don’t want to let that person down, that is trusting in you. The conscience comes into play. But you are hopeful, you have a good idea, and you are going to do your best to achieve it.

So now you have to look for a location. A place that can fit your idea, it’s possible expansion in the next couple of years, the right location and a cheap price. All of this should be in the business plan, as well as future customers and maybe some other stuff that is important to the idea.

Location is an aspect, that is often ignored by the general public, because they think: If I see it, everybody else can see it too. But that is not necessarily always true. We all have mediocre ideas: “they should put an ice-cream store in that corner”, “if I could, I would open a company that sells things online”, “maybe I should start a food-truck”. But please remember: who is going to be your customer? What makes that corner so special for the an ice-cream store? Why will people buy from you online? Do you really cook well enough that somebody will buy your food out of a truck?

College students may tend to observe the tendencies of technology and decide to spend a great amount of money in something like electrospinning equipment and try to be ahead of the industrial need. This is a good idea, but you have to know who you are going to sell to, what the market value is for the quality of your product, in which country, city and street you are going to make the most sales and how you can make people notice you.

Then again, your idea doesn’t have to be a business idea. It can be more abstract: “ I want to change the name of my street”, “I think smoking has been criticised enough”, or maybe something like “I wish I could send all my leftovers to a third world country”. Those dreams are a little more difficult to follow. But the plan starts in the same way: Make an estimate, what it is going to cost you and study all the laws you have to obey to make your idea reality.

Now the first thing people will turn to is the internet. What can I find online, that will tell me how the state of the market is. My guess would be: nothing. Nobody really advertises their needs and advantages online. They do it in person. And you can’t look up the laws online, at least not for free. So then where do you go?

You look for the person who is most related to the subject, and you start to ask questions. This person may or may not want to hear You, but your ideas will certainly be heard. And then comes the question: is it more important to achieve your goal and let somebody else take the credit for it, or do you fear that the person who is listening to you is going to use your idea to achieve his own means, even if it is against what your idea originally stood for.

But then again, have the peace of mind that no one can ever be trusted. We are all humans, we all fail, disappoint and make promises we don’t know how to keep. But to be honest, If we don’t try to pursue our ideas, how can the world ever get better? How can we, the human race, ever take the role as the dominant species on this planet, if we know that our current state of industry is only killing other species and exploiting the planet we live on. Hopefully somebody has a dream, that will allow us to live in balance with the rest of nature.

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Managing creative employees

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Managing creative employees

Designers, journalists, photographers are talented and not ordinary people. At the same time, you can often hear that they can be easily distracted. But if someone complains about the uncontrollability of the creative employees, one simply does not know how to organize them.

How to manage creative employees

Designers, journalists, photographers are talented and not ordinary people. At the same time, you can often hear that they can be easily distracted. But if someone complains about the uncontrollability of the creative employees, one simply does not know how to organize them. Find out how to organize your creative employees in the best way and without unnecessary stress following the tips from these 10-page papers.

The method of the stick doesn’t work

Formally, creative people are no different from all others. And informally, of course, the difference is obvious. The geniuses have other motivators. For example, for them recognition is more important than money. A free schedule is more comfortable than working from a call to a call.

So, it’s advisable to rather choose the right leadership style to live in peace and harmony. In the scientific literature, four types of management are distinguished:

  • Authoritarian. When everything in the company occurs at the behest of the head, and the subordinates are obedient executors.
  • Market. Relations in the team are built on the principle “you do something for me and I’ll do something for you.” This is kind of entrepreneurial approach.
  • Bureaucratic. The company has clear regulations, management orders are not discussed, and all employees are disciplined and executive.
  • Democratic (humanistic). This is a paradise for creative workers. The staff of the company is one big team, where everyone is given chances to realize their ideas, even the most grandiose ones.

Follow your line

The main words to the manager is to become the creative leader himself. However, it makes no sense to create without knowing the measure and purpose. Therefore, top managers of innovative companies adhere to the following principles when running a team:

  • Self-management. Provide employees with a field for activities, not pushing in their strict framework, but also avoiding arbitrariness.
  • Personal responsibility for the result. Do so that every member of the team understands that the success of the project depends on it. Praise because creative people like approval very much.
  • Freedom. Every employee has the right to work as he likes. Work from home, at night or daytime – in fact it’s not important. The main thing is the result.
  • Tasks for interests. A routine is the most terrible word for creatives. They are bored sitting for a long time in one place, doing the same thing. A maximum of three years, and the true creator will run away, even if you give him free breakfast and lunch. So periodically change everything: tasks, areas of responsibility, and projects.

Looking for talents

In order to prevent the search for personnel from turning into a torture, one should immediately pay attention to those candidates who are equally capable of working both in the office and in public transport. And at the same time to give out unique intellectual products that did not exist before, absolutely viable.

During the interview, offer the applicant a simple test. For example, to come up with as many options for non-standard use of a paper clip within one minute. The candidate writes the answers on a letterhead, which is then analyzed.

Work environment

It’s more interesting for the creative person to work in a circle of like-minded people. It is not necessary for this to open super offices where you can ride bikes or lie on bear hides.

The creative environment is a mood, a climate, a kind of comfort. Everything will turn out fine if you take into account some features in time:

  • Create friendly relations. It is very good when you can communicate freely the company, without hierarchy, consult all issues directly with top managers and take the initiative.
  • Support the staff. In a good working climate, ideas and proposals are received with interest and are welcomed by leaders of all ranks. Often arrange brainstorming so that everyone can feel the team spirit and positive attitude.
  • Demonstrate trust and be open. When each person puts forward ideas and is not afraid to express his opinion, the emotional burnout of staff will not overtake.
  • Joke so there will be ease, spontaneity, and a friendly atmosphere.
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