China sees path to growth for MBAs in downturn

The global economic downturn, and efforts to reverse it, will probably make China an even stronger economic competitor than it was before the crisis. The global economic downturn, and efforts to reverse it, will probably make China an even stronger economic competitor than it was before the crisis. China, the world’s third-largest economy behind the…

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At the heart of the Bernabeu

Professor Raúl Respaldiza and the students of the Master in Sports Management visit one of the world’s best known sporting venues. During the first face-to-face period in February 2009 in Madrid, the students of the Master in Sports Management and Professor Raúl Respaldiza had the opportunity of visiting the Santiago Bernabeu stadium. As part of…

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Students from IE’s Master in Finance win the 4th CFA Global Investment Research Challenge in Spain

A team of students from IE Business School’s Master in Finance have won 1st prize in the 4th edition of the CFA Institute’s Global Investment Research Challenge organized in Spain in collaboration with Bolsas y Mercados Españoles and Spanish business daily El Economista. The members of the winning team were Jonas Aita (Germany), Sebastian Mentzen…

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Improving productivity as a formula for beating the crisis

IE Focus - Improving productivity as a formula for beating the crisisIE Focus, March 2009 | By Jorge Diezhandino. MBA part-time 2005,  IE Business School;  Senior Consultant at Alfa Consulting
There are no magic bullets here. The only cure for the virus that has infected the economy consists of reinventing companies so that they produce more using the same resources.
Except for the odd diehard optimist, nobody has any doubts now that the present financial crisis affects all of us to a greater or lesser extent. The banking sector, the construction sector and the car industry all show signs of the effect it has had on their bottom-line results and, in turn, on their workers´ pockets. Furthermore, the effect is spreading and many are now making disastrous forecasts for the ancillary and services sectors.

According to José María O’Kean, Professor of Economic Environment at IE Business School, “there are elements in Spain that can help mitigate the immediate crisis, such as tourism and, to a certain extent, exports, but the model is still one of low-level productivity”. Indeed, as far as the present situation is concerned, replacing the construction sector with the tourist sector and support from exports is logical, but maintaining such a low-productivity model means not only failing to improve our business sector’s competitiveness, but also increasing the difference with those who, in this environment of change, are doing just that. Consequently, only the businesses that successfully assume the change required for improving their productivity will successfully overcome the crisis and come out strengthened at a time when, more than ever, it is essential to reduce costs on the value chain.

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The prosumer and new social advertising

IE Focus - The prosumer and new social advertising IE Focus March 2009 | By Manuel Alonso, Professor at IE Business School

Let’s face it, the customer is always right, and this long-standing truth is growing truer by the day thanks to new technologies. Traditional marketing doesn’t work anymore.
The main effect of the exponential technological development of marketing in recent years has been the increase in consumer power in commercial relations. We have to accept the situation: the consumer is in command. He is no longer an isolated person bombarded by commercial strategies that lead him to take purchasing decisions. He has his own opinion, which he can say very easily through digital channels, directing it not only at advertisers, but also at other consumers, over whom he has huge influence. It is very easy to gather from this statement that usual advertising has abandoned the traditional unidirectional format to become not bidirectional between brand and customer, but rather multidirectional, where customers exchange information with each other.

Bearing in mind this situation, it comes as no surprise that the 2007 New Year cover Time magazine always dedicates to the person it considers as being most important in the previous three-hundred-and-sixty-five days was dedicated to you, and me, and each and every one of us, since we are at the helm of the new information era in which the consumer has become the prosumer: he has unlimited options for choosing products, for comparing them, for hearing other buyers´ opinions, for influencing manufacturers and advertisers… And all that power is making him more difficult to reach using the staler advertising formats, especially in the cold, corporate tone.

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