Andrea Toochin

Andrea Toochin

Business, work, and the path to and through the MBA.

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LVMH attempts to pivot to keep Chinese luxury market shoppers happy.

09.04.14 | LVMH luxury china craftsmanship burberry gucci penault

Love and work are the cornerstones of our humanness.

Sigmund Freud


Doug Rauch on Innovation, Corporate Culture & His New Venture

22.02.14 | 2 notes | Daily tablefood wastedumpster divingfreeganharvard food law and policy clinicnprpeter druckersocratesclayton christensendoug rauchtrader joe'sDaily Table

Doug Rauch, former Trader Joe’s President, current president of Conscious Capitalism Inc, and founder of Daily Table, recently spoke to one of my classes at Babson. Rauch shared many business concepts, from himself and many other great names in business. Below are a few pieces from his talk.

  • Failure is essential if you want to innovate. There is a need to allow for risk and trust. But your risk should be aligned with your company’s mission. (DR)
  • The #1 reason businesses fail is because of naval gazing, ie becoming myopic. If you don’t stay up with the trends, you lose customers. (DR)
  • Great companies = healthy paranoids. (DR)
  • Businesses need: 1) purpose 2) a sense of urgency 3) focus (it can be anything but not everything) and 4) culture or a company DNA.
  • Peter Drucker: Innovate or Die. Culture eats strategy…
  • Socrates: The unexamined life is not worth living.
  • Clayton Christensen: Disruptive Innovation - means constantly changing…

Rauch is starting a new organization called Daily Table (DT) in the Boston area. Here’s a link to a piece NPR did on DT. Rauch is among many cited in this report from the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic and the Natural Resources Defense Council, which is related to his new startup, an organization that will make prepared foods and sell it at junk food prices.

GM’s Chief & The Glass Cliff

05.02.14 | glass cliffglass ceilingmary barragmgender inequalitypay gap

Last year the IMF appointed Christine Lagarde after a certain French man got in trouble, yet again. Now the press is heated up after learning that the new head of General Motors Mary Barra, its first female CEO, without including LT compensation, appears to be earning roughly half of what the prior CEO made. CNN has a comparison chart here.

This all points to the concept of the Glass Cliff. There are pros and cons to this concept. While I’m usually leaning toward the con - that woman are often only offered such positions when the challenge is greater, and that they appear to be paid less, the truth is these are still opportunities. But these opportunities should come with fair pay.

According to this abstract, researchers point to a theory of “think manager, think male,” but say during times of conflict or struggle they tend to think female, possibly because there’s a feeling that women are better “people managers” and will take the heat for the company.