Business Strategy Monday

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) Ignite: To start a fire or start something else

The new product ignited growth at our company.

(2) Work processes: The way we work

GM Motors changed their work processes to be more similar to Toyota.

(3) To Soar: To go very high.

Some birds soar above lakes and look for fish to eat.

Just because our profits are soaring now, doesn’t mean they will always be this high.

Today’s

Questions

1. What happened to productivity after factory managers got electricity?

a. It increased right away.

b. It increased after 5 years.

c. It increased after 30 years.

2. What’s an example of a general purpose technology?

a. Electricity

b. Steam Engine

c. Computers

d. All of the above

3. What does he say is stagnating?

a. Jobs

b. Productivity

c. Innovation

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BUSINESS STRATEGY MONDAY

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Want some more questions? Today’s lesson is also on TedEd: http://ed.ted.com/on/9ZHAUrbR

By Jeremy Schaar

In today’s lesson we’ll look at a TED Video. Erik Brynjolfsson (brin-JOLF-son??) feels that for the world to keep growing, we need to grow with machines. What does this mean? Well, it means that we need to use computers and our brains together in order to grow fast. For example, who do you think is the best chess player: A great chess program? A great chess player? A player and a program working together? Obviously, the answer is the player and program working together.

Erik argues that productivity and growth are both growing fast because of computers. However, we aren’t using computers well. The same thing happened after the world first got electricity. It took 30 years for managers to use electricity to really increase productivity. All general purpose technologies–electricity, the steam engine, computers–have lots of other good stuff that comes with them, but it takes time. The light bulb couldn’t exist without electricity, but it took time to invent it.

In our current world, we aren’t creating enough jobs, so we need to figure out how to do that.

For managers, the question is whether they’re really using computer technology well. Are they really increasing your productivity? If not, why not? Most companies still don’t have CTOs (Chief Technology Officers) who can fight for technology things at the top level.

What do you think? Are companies using technology like computers well? Should humans work with technology more? Will computers eventually take all our jobs?

That’s a lot to think about. How about practicing some new vocabulary and posting your thoughts on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter?

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

C, D, A

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

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