News Archive - January 2017 View All

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How a Canadian engineer fuelled the battery industry

January 30, 2017

Lewis Urry was particularly proud of his life’s work at Christmastime.

The Canadian inventor of the modern-day battery powered the consumer electronics revolution that forever changed the holiday shopping season. The alkaline cell he created in 1957 brought portable power to the masses, making batteries a consumer staple used around the world.

The global market for household batteries is worth about $4.5-billion (U.S.) a year. A growing list of products ranging from toys to household appliances run on battery technology inspired by Mr. Urry’s innovation.

Read the full story from The Globe and Mail. 

How Design Thinking Turned One Hospital into a Bright and Comforting Place

January 23, 2017
Long dreary corridors, impersonal waiting rooms, the smell of disinfectant — hospitals tend to be anonymous and depressing places. Even if you’re just there as a visitor, you’re bound to wonder, “How can my friend recover in such an awful place? Will I get out of here without catching an infection?”

But the transformation of the Rotterdam Eye Hospital suggests that it doesn’t have to be this way. Over the past 10 years, the hospital’s managers have transformed their institution from the usual, grim, human-repair shop into a bright and comforting place. By incorporating design thinking and design principles into their planning process, the hospital’s executives, supported by external designers, have turned the hospital into a showplace that has won a number of safety, quality, and design awards — including a nomination for the prestigious Dutch Design Award. Even more important to the not-for-profit organization: patient intake rose 47%.

Read the full article from the Harvard Business Review.

Sustainable Business Will Move Ahead With or Without Trump’s Support

January 16, 2017

If we take the incoming president of the United States at his word, things look dire for the cause of sustainability. Donald Trump and many of his advisers appear hostile to action on climate change and to progress on many social issues that companies have already embraced, such as diversity and LGBT rights. Even if Trump himself stays ambivalent on some of these issues, Republican leaders have much clearer aims, including extensive plans to slash environmental protections.

Will the seismic shift in U.S. political leadership have a chilling effect on corporate action around environmental and social issues? 

Read the full article from the Harvard Business Review. 
Energy

How to Write Email with Military Precision

January 09, 2017
In the military, a poorly formatted email may be the difference between mission accomplished and mission failure. During my active duty service, I learned how to structure emails to maximize a mission’s chances for success. Since returning from duty, I have applied these lessons to emails that I write for my corporate job, and my missives have consequently become crisper and cleaner, eliciting quicker and higher-quality responses from colleagues and clients. Here are three of the main tips I learned on how to format your emails with military precision:

Read the full article from the Harvard Business Review. 

What Motivates Gig Economy Workers

January 03, 2017
The gig economy workforce is growing. A new Pew Research Center survey on the sharing economy shows that 8% of American adults earned money from an online employment platform in the last year across industries, such as ride hailing, online tasks, and cleaning/laundry. These gig economy workers are driven by a range of motivations, from lacking other jobs to wanting control over their schedule to seeking social connection. But there are big differences separating those who are more financially reliant on gig work (56% of workers surveyed) and “casual” gig workers (42%) who report that they could live comfortably without the additional income. While gig work is a necessity for some, it is a luxury for others.

Read the full article from the Harvard Business Review. 
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