The Lead: Consumerism, Transportation Strategy, Microsoft buys GitHub

The Lead, AchieveForum’s weekly brief of leadership news and insights, provides quick clarity into relevant headlines and straight-forward analysis for applying effective leadership tools and techniques.

E-Commerce, Smartphones, and Social Media Consumerism

Every month 800 million people actively scroll through Instagram, and now the app is enabled to accept credit or debit cards so users do not have to leave the platform to make a purchase. According to, five percent of digital retail traffic now goes through social media channels, and according to the visual search company ViSenze, one in three of the people who use social media make a purchase every month through a social media platform (like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, or Snapchat).

Our View: A mobile strategy requires thoughtful leadership regardless of industry. Whether the mobile transformation is in retail, healthcare, or somewhere else, reporting and analytics help leaders and their teams understand their return on investment. Defining how your organization will measure the success of your mobile strategy is an excellent way to begin. Further Reading

Transportation Strategy Approved by Ukraine Government

At a government meeting last week, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved their national transportation strategy until 2030. With defined priorities for transport development, Ukraine intends to integrate their transport complex into the global transport network. A planned network of routes for regular container/multimodcal freight trains coordinated with EU train routes and the introduction of free routes and navigation technologies are set to increase the efficiency of Ukraine’s airspace.

Our View: Whether your strategy is set out for 100 days, 5 months, or over ten years, certain principles of strategic leadership apply. Transparency around information, sensibly distributed responsibily, concrete avenues for experimentation, and a safe culture where it’s okay to fail are some guidelines that can empower your team to achieve your organization’s strategic objectives. Finally, create access to other strategic leaders for your team to collaborate with to avoid common problems like groupthink and unchecked isolated schemes. Further Reading

Microsoft to Buy GitHub

Microsoft Corp is buying GitHub Inc. for $7.5 billion in stock in a deal that is expected to close by the end of this year. Moves into the cloud and artificial intelligence development will be accelerated by the deal as it will bring in about 28 million programers who publish code openly. Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella has had two other deals valued above $2 billion in his four-year tenure: LinkedIn for $26.2 billion in 2016 and Mojang AB (maker of the Minecraft video game) for $2.5 billion in 2014.

Our View: Bold business leaders never settle for the status quo because of their keen eye for opportunity. Needed changes never go unaddressed by these leaders, and they stick around to see the results of their work. They make very strategic decisions centered around their customers about where and how to invest. Further Reading

New Energy Industry Practice Leaders at Chubb Limited

With offices in 54 countries, Chubb Limited is the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurer. Brad Watson and Barton Porter are the new energy practice leaders for Chubb’s mid- and large-market business, and they will be responsible for leveraging Chubb’s offerings to mitigate risks specifically related to the energy sector. Examples of their clients will include companies involved in power generation, manufacturing, and contracting.

Our View: The best onboarding programs begin before a leader’s first official day on the new job in order to establish the leader’s credibility and generate early wins that build momentum. Make leadership transitions run smoothly with facilitated discussions with key stakeholders that forge solid relationships between the new leader and their team. Further Reading

Single Hong Kong Parking Space Sells for $760,000

Parking spaces in any metropolitan city can be expensive, and in Hong Kong a single parking space (16.4 by 8.2 feet) just sold for $760,000 which makes it the most expensive parking space in Hong Kong. Attached to the Ultima apartment complex in the city’s Ho Man Tin area, the parking space is situated in the most densly populated part of Hong Kong. In 2017 on Hong Kong Island, another single parking space was sold for $664,260.

Our View: Spanning functions, sectors, and industries, leaders are faced with growing complexity in demand planning. The right processes, culture, and tools are required to meet the challenges of everything from capacity constraints to variation in distribution channels. It is considered best practice to designate a responsible person or team to own and execute the demand planning process at your organization. Further Reading

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