Monthly Archives: April 2015

Philip Kotler to Speak at Oslo Business for Peace Award Ceremony

Photo of Philip Kotler, author of Confronting CapitalismThe Business for Peace Foundation will be welcoming Philip Kotler, S.C. Johnson Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and author of CONFRONTING CAPITALISM: Real Solutions for a Troubled Economic System, as a speaker at the Oslo Business for Peace Award ceremony. The ceremony takes place in Oslo, Norway on May 6th.

The Business for Peace Foundation is a non-profit foundation based in Oslo, Norway. Each year, the foundation names up to seven Honorees who receive the Oslo Business for Peace Award, in recognition of their individual and outstanding business worthy contribution to the building of trust, stability and peace. The Honorees are selected by an independent committee composed of winners of either the Nobel Peace Prize or Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.  According to the Foundation, the Honorees “are living proof that it is possible to marry solid business performance with higher purposes, as a counter to those who claim that ‘the business of business is business.’”

At the award ceremony, Philip  Kotler will talk about how corporate social responsibility is evolving into higher levels of corporate commitment. According to Kotler, “More companies are ready to share with the public on an annual basis their investments in the four pillars of sustainability – their people, partners, products and the planet.”

Widely acknowledged as the world’s foremost expert on strategic marketing, Professor Kotler is also a classically trained economist. He earned his Master’s in Economics at the University of Chicago under the famed Nobel laureate Milton Friedman, who represented free-market thinking. He went on to pursue his Ph.D. at MIT under Paul Samuelson and Robert Solow, two Nobel Prize-winning economists who represented Keynesian thinking.

Jacket cover of Confronting Capitalism by Philip Kotler

In CONFRONTING CAPITALISM: Real Solutions for a Troubled Economic System, Kotler draws on his background in economics, as well as his esteemed knowledge of marketing, to offer unique insights into the inner workings of capitalism.  He writes: “Capitalism, management, and marketing must be joined in a comprehensive framework to understand marketplace developments and impacts.”  The book examines fourteen major problems undermining capitalism today, and suggests solutions for returning to a healthier, more sustainable capitalism.

Financial Times said of the book “Critics of capitalism are not in short supply. Most are well-intentioned, but many are badly informed and make their arguments so poorly that capitalism can ignore them. But when the critic is Philip Kotler, capitalism needs to sit up and take notice.

Kotler is the author of over fifty books and many more journal articles. He has also won numerous marketing awards, was the first marketer ever to appear on a postage stamp (in Indonesia in 2003), and was inducted into the Marketing Hall of Fame in 2014.

The Business for Peace Award ceremony is open to the public. You can register here.


Webcast Archived: 5 Steps to Gain Control Under Pressure: Tips from an FBI Hostage Negotiation Trainer

Photo of Mark Goulston, author of Just ListenThe American Management Association New Media team hosted a webcast with Mark Goulston, author of Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone, Paperback Edition. Dr. Goulston discussed the steps that you can take to keep your composure and focus when stressful circumstances arise.


Wednesday, April 8, 2015
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Eastern
Fee: Complimentary
Meeting Number: 17872-00001
Find the Archived Webcast Here

You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression, and if you lose control, people will always know that part of you exists and it will work against you.  Dr. Goulston will share the 5 steps to gain control under pressure so you become that cool, calm, and collected person that you always wanted to be, but didn’t think you could.  Among the things you will learn in this webcast are:

  • How your amygdala hijacks you to kick you off balance and how you can foil such a hijack
  • How to talk yourself down from fear and anger to acceptance and control
  • How to have your internal mentors talk you back into control and how to remember what they meant to you
  • How to realize that an “ounce of anticipation” is worth a “ton of poise”
  • How to stay on diets and exercise regimens by making a Santa’s list of who’s been naughty and nice to you

Find Mark Goulston’s AMA Webcast.

Jacket cover of Just Listen, paperback edition by Mark GoulstonMark Goulston is a psychiatrist, business consultant, executive coach, and FBI and police hostage negotiation trainer. A bestselling author whose books include Get Out of Your Own Way and Get Out of Your Own Way at Work, he writes a column on leadership for Fast Company and Solve Anything with Dr. Mark for Tribune Media Services and is frequently called on to share his expertise by the media, including the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Newsweek, Time, Reuters, NPR, CNN, Fox News,and the Oprah and TODAY shows.

We Are Market Basket Now Available on NetGalley

Jacket cover of We Are Market Basket by Daniel Korschun and Grant WelkerWe Are Market Basket: The Story of the Unlikely Grassroots Movement that Saved a Beloved Business by Daniel Korschun and Grant Welker shares the journey of Market Basket employees, customers, and the family behind one of the most admired supermarkets in the country. Journalists, booksellers, book reviewers, librarians, and media professionals interested in learning more about this fascinating story of loyalty, values, trust, and vision are invited to request We Are Market Basket for review.

They weren’t part of a union. They were part of a family. 

What if a company were so treasured and trusted that people literally took to the streets—by the thousands—to save it? That company is Market Basket, a popular New England supermarket chain.

After long-time CEO Arthur T. Demoulas was ousted by his cousin Arthur S. Demoulas, the company’s managers and rank-and-file workers struck back. Risking their own livelihoods to restore the job of their beloved boss they walked out, but they didn’t walk far. At huge protest rallies, they were joined by loyal customers—leaving stores empty. Suppliers and vendors stopped deliveries—rendering shelves bare. Politicians were forced to take sides. The national media and experts were stunned by the unprecedented defense of an executive. All openly challenged the Market Basket board of directors to make things right.

And, in the end, they prevailed.

With its arresting firsthand accounts from the streets and executive suites, We Are Market Basket is as inspiring as it is instructive. What is it about Market Basket and its leader that provokes such ferocious loyalty? How does a company spread across three states maintain a culture that embraces everyone—from cashier to customer—as family? Can a company really become an industry leader by prioritizing stakeholders over shareholders?

Set against a backdrop of bad blood and corporate greed, We Are Market Basket is, above all, a page-turner that chronicles the epic rise, fall, and redemption of this iconic and uniquely American company.

Daniel Korschun is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business and a Fellow at the Center for Corporate Reputation Management.

Grant Welker covered the Market Basket story from the start as a reporter for the Lowell Sun.

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NetGalley is a service for people who read and recommend books, such as book reviewers, journalists, librarians, professors, booksellers, and bloggers.

There are a number of different reading options for this e-galley:

Find all of AMACOM’s e-galleys on NetGalley.

You can review how to get AMACOM’s digital galley request approval on NetGalley HERE.

E. Freya Williams on the Business Case for Sustainability

Photo of E. Freya Williams, author of Green GiantsThe following is a guest post from E. Freya Williams, author of Green Giants: How Smart Companies Turn Sustainability into Billion-Dollar Businesses

What’s the business case for sustainability?

Over the past eight years that I’ve spent compiling evidence that brands can both maximize profit and be a force for social good, that’s the question I’ve been asked most often. And it’s one that tends to be on the minds of business leaders each year around Earth Day.

This year that question has a new answer: a billion dollars.

For a generation, influenced by the thinking of economist Milton Friedman, business wisdom has held that purpose and profit are fundamentally opposing forces. But there are now at least nine companies globally that generate a billion dollars or more in annual revenue from products, services, or lines of business with sustainability or social good at their core.

They are the Green Giants. Far from the hemp-wrapped products of yore, they include some of the most sexy and dynamic brands out there today, from relatively new start-ups to business lines incubated within major blue chip corporations. They are Tesla, Chipotle, Nike Flyknit, Whole Foods, Unilever, GE Ecomagination, Toyota Prius, Natura and IKEA’s line of Products for a More Sustainable Life at Home.

These companies cut across the global economy. They make products as diverse as burritos and beauty cream, sports shoes and sports cars, organic kale and airplane engines. They cover a spectrum of price points and spend types, from low-cost and discretionary to big-ticket, corporate purchases. They span B2B and B2C companies.

Yet they share six factors in common. These factors enable them to generate over $100 billion in combined annual revenues from their sustainable business strategies. They are:

  • An Iconoclastic Leader. In each case, the sustainability journey can be traced back to one individual who started it all. He or she is a resident of the C-Suite, and exhibits the 4 Cs of Iconoclastic Leadership – conviction, courage, commitment, and contrarianism. Consider Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever. On his first day on the job, Polman announced that Unilever would no longer provide guidance to Wall Street, and would eliminate quarterly reporting.
  • A Disruptive Innovation. Each of the Green Giant revenue streams is not founded on a slightly greener or more socially conscious version of an existing product, but on an innovation that disrupted a category. Sure, the Tesla Model S is a zero emission vehicle, but it is also the highest-scoring car Consumer Reports ever tested, and set a new record for safety in tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • A Higher Purpose. Paradoxical though it may seem, businesses with a purpose beyond profit tend to outperform the competition on—you guessed it—profit. Research conducted by Jason Denner of the consulting group POINT380 found that the annual returns of publicly traded Green Giant companies have averaged 11.7% higher than their leading competitors over the past five years.
  • Built In, Not Bolted On. For Green Giants, sustainability isn’t just a department; they integrate sustainability into six core structures of their business, including organizational structure, cost structure and governance structure, to enable it to become a revenue driver, not a drag. That’s why Chipotle thrives even though its ethical and humane raw ingredients are more expensive; its cost structure is built to accommodate those higher prices, so it still commands profit margins of 12.1 percent, against a fast food industry average estimated at 4.6 percent.
  • Mainstream Appeal. If your product targets only a Super Green consumer niche, it’s hard to reach $1 billion in revenue because there aren’t enough people who take green values seriously enough to get you there. Green Giants achieve appeal with mainstream customers or consumers. Consider the Prius, which was the world’s 3rd best-selling car during 2013 – not best-selling green car, just best car, period.
  • A New Behavioral Contract. Transparency, responsibility, collaboration: today’s business buzzwords are alive and well at the Green Giants. But it’s more than talk. Corporate reputation today is built through actions, not advertising. Your behavior is your brand. Green Giants are behaving their way to billions – like Whole Foods, which has invested to create ratings systems to ensure you know as much as possible about every item you put into your shopping cart.

Across the economy, new sustainable businesses are springing up that share the Six Factors, and are racing toward the billion-dollar mark. These “Next Billions” include eyewear sensation Warby Parker, hospitality disruptor AirBNB, Chiptole wannabees SweetGreen and Dig Inn, and Hollywood star Jessica Alba’s Honest Company.

Together, the Green Giants and the Next Billions represent a new paradigm for business, and an opportunity the UN estimates at $2.2 trillion by 2020. So maybe this Earth Day is the time to start building your own Green Giant strategy – before your competitor does.


E. Freya Williams has advised organizations, including Unilever, Coca Cola, Tetra Pak and the UN, on how to incorporate sustainability and social good into their brands. The co-founder of OgilvyEarth, she now serves as EVP of Business+Social Purpose at Edelman. Her expertise has been featured in Newsweek, The Financial Times, and on NPR.

You can follow Freya on twitter: @freya1

A Big Thank You to Your Administrative Assistant

The following is a guest post from Kevin Wilson, co-author of The Administrative Assistant’s and Secretary’s Handbook.

Administrative Professional’s Day is the time to thank your hard-working assistant for putting up with those endless requests from you and your colleagues. This year, rather than a gift card to Starbucks or a spa gift certificate you would like to keep for yourself, how about giving the gift of development. (Or perhaps in addition to a gift card or spa gift certificate!)

Gone are the days when an administrative assistant might work 30 years for the same company, many of those years for the same boss. Corporate restructurings, which have affected hundreds of thousands of people over the past few years, have been a mixed blessing for administrative assistants. In the wake of restructuring, some assistants have to leave their position when their boss leaves, but others are asked to take on greater responsibility, to “take up the slack” as middle managers are phased out. Either situation could be professionally devastating if an administrative assistant is not prepared.

While it is important to offer training on the skills needed for the current job, such as computer skills, it could be strategically helpful to acquire other essential business skills whether or not they are needed right now.  Look for training opportunities in areas such as business writing, research, customer service, purchasing, budgeting, bookkeeping, invoicing, training new employees, presentation skills, and supervising an office staff.  The American Management Association offers a wide variety of seminars on these and other topics.

Having these skills will give your administrative assistant the most flexible preparation to meet any challenge he or she may face—either an on-the-job crisis or a career advancement opportunity.

Another development idea that is more closely related with your assistant’s current job would be to support his or her effort to become certified by the International Association of Administrative Professionals (formerly the National Secretaries Association) as a Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) or Certified Administrative Professional (CAP). This certification is granted only upon the successful completion of examinations in various aspects of secretarial/administrative procedures and skills. Being certified can be a tremendous boost to your assistant’s career.

Giving the gift of development shows you care personally about your administrative assistant’s future and well-being. If you have a limited budget, offer to pay for an adult education course of your assistant’s choice at the local college. There are also many useful online courses that can help your assistant acquire new skills.  And above all, talk with your assistant about what they see themselves doing in the future, and then work together on a development plan that helps them achieve these goals.

Kevin Wilson is the co-author of The Administrative Assistant’s and Secretary’s Handbook and is Vice President of Videologies, Inc., a company that specializes in training administrative professionals in Fortune 500 companies.