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The importance of retailers understanding consumers and delivering great customer experience

Recently at the  Forrester’s Forum for Customer Experience Professionals in New York on June 26,  Graham Atkinson, Chief Marketing and Customer Experience Officer at Walgreens, spoke about his work to transform the company from one that traditionally differentiated based on location to one that differentiates based on experience.

As reported in a recent blog by Harley Manning of Forrester, Graham talks about three customer experience initiatives underway, including:

  • Delivering the well experience
  • Transforming the community pharmacy
  • Taking the Walgreens brand to the world

You may have seen a recent Cisco video commercial on the area of customer experience called “Weekend Warrior”:

Here at Cisco, we believe that customer experience is part of the connections made possible by what Cisco describes as the Internet of Everything (IoE).

To further our knowledge in this area, Cisco recently released the Cisco Connected Customer Experience Report focused on the retail shopping experience.

In this report, we discovered that:

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Location-Based Services & Monetization for Service Providers

Location Based Services in the Service Provider (SP) world is a very hot topic at present, with many SP’s looking for monetization opportunities for Wi-Fi.

Cisco has been working with our service provider customers to help deliver monetization capabilities; one way of opening new revenue opportunities is by using our new Connected Mobile Experiences (CMX) Solution.

Dr. Brendan O’Brien, Director of Product Marketing for Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences, continues his thought leadership blog series to tackle the trend towards location-based services in the Service Provider space. Brendan takes a brief look at some of the drivers for Wi-Fi in the SP world and some steps along the value chain, then dives into the emerging models where SP’s are beginning to focus their attentions on monetization and new, additional revenue opportunities. Read more at http://blogs.cisco.com/sp/location-based-services-monetization-for-service-providers 

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The Workplace of the Future: Connected, Collaborative, Creative

The Internet of Everything is reshaping every aspect of our lives—including how and where we work. Think back to the 1950s, when the telephone was the only connected device in the typical office, and collaboration happened only when coworkers physically walked to a conference room for a face-to-face meeting.

Today, we take for granted an ever-expanding collection of connected devices and collaboration tools that didn’t even exist 10 or 20 years ago—smartphones, tablets, ”smart” white boards, online meetings, web video conferencing,  online document sharing, TelePresence, social media—all helping us change the ways we communicate, collaborate, and share.

With the amount of new technical information in the world doubling every two years, the future holds the promise of even greater, faster change. Google Glass is just the beginning of a whole new category of wearable technology that will enable even tighter integration of technology with work and life.

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People + Process + Data + Things = JOBS

“If you don’t get off that computer game, you’ll never amount to anything!”

It’s a familiar lament in modern families. Yet as parents fret about the time their children spend gaming, they may be missing the bigger picture — by failing to perceive the future of job creation in the Internet of Everything (IoE) economy.

Gaming (within reason!) bestows children with some valuable skills that will be relevant to a rapidly evolving job market. And for a few kids, the gaming becomes the job. Gaming “super bowls” draw top players and increasingly large audiences that prefer the interactive nature of gaming to the performer / spectator model of “real” sports.

The point is not for parents to bank on their children becoming wealthy at the “gaming super bowl.” Those odds are probably not much better than making it to the NFL’s Super Bowl!

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From Work-Life Balance to Work-Life Blend – Google, Twitter and Cisco Join a Panel to Discuss how to Prepare Companies for Gen Y

Two weeks ago, I was sitting in front of 250 people at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco talking about a subject most Fortune 500 companies are dealing with today: how to prepare for the thousands of Gen Y employees about to descend on the work place. Last Tuesday, July 16th, I had the pleasure of speaking on this topic with Google’s Todd Carlisle, Director of Staffing, and Twitter’s Melissa Daimler, Head of Organizational Effectiveness and Learning. Doug MacMillan with Bloomberg BusinessWeek moderated the discussion.

During the course of the evening, we discussed an assortment of topics around how companies are creating an environment that these new generations of employees will want to work in. It’s clear Gen Yers work and interact in different ways and companies are having to adapt.

For example, all of the panelists agreed that companies must provide lots of opportunities for training and coaching. I firmly believe that the number one predictor of job satisfaction is great coaching. In five or ten years, I may not remember how I was paid in that particular position, but I will remember an impactful mentor and a skill I learned. Todd from Google brought up an interesting Googler to Googler program that they’ve implemented, that connects people to share their skills – everything from debugging a complex piece of code to teaching yoga. Melissa agreed, saying that if there is just one question that managers ask employees every quarter, it should be “what is the skill you want to learn.” After all, people are more loyal to building their skill set and their career path than any type of company.

The topic of work-life balance also came up, and each panelist talked about that in a different way. I believe that what used to be a work-life balance is, for Gen Yers, a work-life blend. This newest generation of employees is used to constantly flipping back and forth Read More »

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