Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Five myths about Strategy Consulting

My stay in consulting so far has been a brief one but nevertheless it has been an eventful one as well. Interacting with consultants at different levels and from different geographies has been an enlightening experience. As is the case, I used this opportunity to ignite the discussion and this time my topic was “myths about strategy consulting”. Based on my interactions, experiences and a bit of reading on “strategy consulting”, these are the five myths that I have come across. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Disruptive innovation: Can the "New" propel the "Old" ?

Online book stores in India are a confused lot as according to the latest US data from The Association of American Publishers (AAP), the iPad isn't just proving to be a category creator but it is threatening to be a category killer as well. The threatened category is our very own "physical books" or hard-copies with variants like hardcover or paperback. The AAP data shows that in January as well as February 2011, trade print sales witnessed double-digit declines, thus confirming our worst fears that digital sales is cannibalizing print. So "e-book" is the disruptive innovation that we love to hear about and if the online book stores are increasingly focusing on e-books then it's not a surprise. Isn't it? Let's now shift our focus to India. I know it's a bit abrupt but please bear with me.

The Indian Scenario
We can say that in the US, the digital version could very well maul the printed ones. By the way the traditional print newspapers have already learnt it the hard way. So should the online book stores in India go the same way, i.e. shift their focus from the printed versions to the electronic ones? After all in India things are a bit different as online book shopping in India is currently growing at 50% y-o-y driven solely by print sales. Most of us know that India is under-penetrated with low literacy levels (65%) vis-à-vis US and has low internet connectivity. Thus even "print newspapers" is a growing category in India. So how can the advent of e-books affect their counterparts i.e. the printed books? Will online book stores in India achieve more growth in e-book segment than printed books? To answer these question let's go through a major happening centered in India. It's the case concerning the telecom boom.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The US Double Dip: It could well be a reality

Initially the experts predicted a V shaped recovery i.e. a fast recovery for the US but then shifted to the left in the alphabetical order i.e. U, a slower path to recovery, but the existing scenario might push them further to the right i.e. to W or double dip. A look at the common economic indicators like unemployment rate, growth rate, rate of inflation or interest rate etc. would tell us that the future is murky. Add to that the increasing clout of countries like China or should we say decreasing impact of US on the global setup is only worsening the cause. The inability of the US to force appreciation of Yuan is a case in point. The usual backers of US like UK, France, Japan are themselves deep into crisis so no help can be expected from that quarter. The world economy discussing “decoupling” shows that the perception is that the US is lonely as well as depleted in its battle with recession.