Mr Marcus McGowan MSc PgDip BA (Hons)

This Business Education Learning Blog is aimed primarily at Higher Business Management students/teachers and ICT students/teachers.

The aim of this blog is to provide you with interesting articles, news, trivia as well as resources or links to materials which will help in your course of study.

I am a Teacher of Business Education and I have written for Education Scotland and BBC Bitesize.

If you'd like to contact me please click on the link to: email me

Business Books on Amazon

What do you want to be when you grow up?!

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Cashless payments greater than cash itself

The future is here… at last!


McDonald's and employees clash

Employees of the world’s number one fast food restaurant aren’t happy with their ‘McJob’ in terms of pay:


Advanced Higher Business Management

Next session our school are hoping to offer AH Business Management for the first time in a while. Particularly interested in the Business Current Issues side of the Advanced Higher as at present there are many interesting stories relating to business which will capture student’s imagination. The most obvious ones are the rise of the BRIC countries, the continuing EU economic crisis as exemplified by Greece, and of course the whole ‘Brexit’ scenario, where the UK may or may not leave the EU. A referendum on the EU was in the Conservative manifesto, so it will be extremely likely this will take place either in 2016 or in 2017.


Other issues we will have to look at will also be the changes in technology and the impact new technologies could have on our everyday lives. Simple ideas like paying for goods and services by using your mobile will revolutionise how we shop. But as with anything, it will have an impact on people and jobs.


The living wage is another issue which has become important to many. And finally, it will be interesting to see how the Arctic Oil Drilling campaign will unfold, with consequences for our planet.


Looking forward to it as much as the pupils!

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Thursday, 26 March 2015


A follow up piece to the character assassination of former England manager Fabio Capello. In the comments section he receives a lot of support from England fans who lay the blame at the poor attitude and motivation of England’s senior players. How do you motivate a player who earns £300,000 a week?


The article by Rio Ferdinand slates Capello, yet as mentioned, the fans in the comments defend Capello’s stunning CV and criticise the International records of players like Rooney, Terry and Ferdinand himself.


What would motivational theories such as Taylor, Maslow, McGregor, Herzberg, or Mayo make of all this? How do you motivate such wealthy players who possibly do not want to risk injury which would affect their club careers? If you give in to all their demands you will be viewed as weak, yet if you are too strict and inflexible you may have a player mutiny on your hands, something the Netherlands have experienced in several International Championships.


Perhaps it is all in selection? Choose team players and not players who are in it for themselves?


Kraft and Heinz to Merge

A rumoured $40 billion merger brokered by Warren Buffet and an event which will create the World’s 3rd largest food and drink company… the breathtaking merger of Kraft and Heinz!


Kraft bought UK chocolate giant Cadbury and also own such brands as Kenco coffee. But to merge with a brand as famous as Heinz is really taking things to a whole new level:


Management Styles

Interesting football examples here: Capello (Autocratic) vs Hodgson (Laissez-Faire or Democratic)?


However, it can be said that both styles underachieved in the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Capello did emerge from his group before bowing out to Germany.


Football has thrown up some excellent examples of Autocratic managers such as Sir Alex Ferguson and the new Sunderland boss Dick Advocaat. Laissez-Faire approach seems to generate few successes in sports, perhaps down to the pressures and rigour of practice/training required.


I wonder what style Dave Brailsford (Team GB Cycling supreme) or Sir Clive Woodward (England’s Rugby World Cup winning boss) would be regarded as?


Friday, 6 February 2015

Alibaba beat Amazon to the Air

Most people will have seen the excellent demo video for Amazon Prime Air. It was thought to still be fanciful and a few years off. Well, welcome to the future! Alibaba, the biggest internet retailer in China, has already begun 3 day trials in Beijing and its surrounding environs. Aside from the capital, they are also trailing in Shanghai and Guangzhou. The flights will only deliver to places within an hour of these mega cities, but since these population centres are so massive, it is an incredibly large market that Alibaba is promising to deliver to.


Will it be successful? How will they cope with all the teething problems of how to deliver into an urban area? How do you deliver to a high block of flats with no garden? How do you prevent people stealing deliveries, or damaging the drones in midair?


Do delivery drones present a wider security risk?


All of these questions may be answered or not. But it does seem the first steps into how we shop in the future has already spread its wings.


Read more here:


Friday, 30 January 2015

Google building driverless cars in Detroit

Perhaps the Motor City is making a well deserved comeback? Google are apparently already in the process of building driverless cars in Detroit:


Google: Driverless cars on the road by 2020

Another big step by Google: they now plan to have test cars on the public roads by 2020. Naturally, such cars will be driverless.


Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Google Translate... in real time?

It sounds like the realm of science fiction, but Google claim that their Translate tool can now be used in real time:


I will download the app when I get home and trial it to see if it is really as good as it seems. The possibilities are endless.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

World's Biggest Cargo Ship

The amazing information on The Globe, currently the world’s biggest cargo ship:


The article also points to around 22,500 tonnage being the maximum ships can carry, not down to anything other than the ability of modern ports to accommodate them.

Tesco closing stores

Troubled Tesco have announced they are going to close 43 stores:


Friday, 19 December 2014

Nick is no more!

Lord Sugar’s trusty advisor, Nick Hewer is leaving The Apprentice after 10 years. Nick was an original member of the BBC show, who has gained a reputation for pulling some incredible faces at some of the silly schemes and behaviour of the candidates. Nick has branched out and now presents Countdown on Channel 4.


Nick who is 70, has blamed the hectic and gruelling filming schedule on his decision. It does beg the question of whether will Alan Sugar step down at the same time as his old friend?


Monday, 24 November 2014

Son of HOTOL

Skylon is a new aircraft/spacecraft with an improved design from that very British concept, HOTOL (Horizontal Takeoff and Landing). HOTOL once promised London to Sydney in less than an hour by taking off like a plane then heading into orbit, before descending back down to land on an airport runway.


More information on the latest developments here:


Flying Car is on its way!

Once thought the preserve of Science Fiction, it now seems there is a genuine race to create the world’s first flying car. This article goes into more detail:


Are comments moribund?

Thanks to online trolls it now seems websites are now being phased out:


How to get ahead in China... if you are a brand!

Top brands in China share the secret of their success:


How to win over customers in South Africa

KFC boss gives tips on how to win over South African consumers:


History of Tesco Clubcard

Good article on the Tesco Clubcard’s origins:


Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Billionaires did well at school!

This article has some evidence that is reassuring in a way for pupils and students who are motivated and want to do well… the vast majority of billionaires went to university and are highly educated.


Sometimes pupils are misled a bit by the success stories of Richard Branson and others who left school with no qualifications… but no everyone is lucky enough like Branson to have a millionaire relative who financed his early failures.


Hearts go for the "Living Wage"

Scottish football club Hearts are introducing a living wage at the club. This will affect staff employed on a part-time and contract basis.


Hearts owner Ann Budge told the Edinburgh club's website: "We believe it is entirely in keeping with the values we hold dear as a club."


The living wage is updated annually and calculated according to the cost of living in the UK.


As of October 2014 the living wage is £7.65 an hour, while the minimum wage for over-21s is £6.50.

Friday, 24 October 2014

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Major brands to slash their TV advertising budgets

Apple, Pepsi and McDonald’s are among the major companies who are cutting their TV advertising budgets as they now recognise the increasing value of social media and online advertising. This also comes hot on the heels of Kraft who have seen a big deal with Google gain valuable returns.


However, the daddy of them all, Coca Cola, is not mentioned. And as we know, Coca Cola’s distribution and advertising methods are second to none.


Thursday, 2 October 2014

Young people lack skills for work...

Says this survey.


Hopefully this skills gap can be addressed.

Tesco in South Korea

Tesco’s incredible virtual store in Seoul:


Future City 2020?

This interactive page outlines what the future high street may look like in a few years. Many of its concepts seemed inspired by the sci-fi movie Minority Report. Others are concepts in the prototype stage.


Impact of protests on Hong Kong Tourism

The first week in October is a national holiday in Hong Kong called “Golden Week”. This article highlights the issues surrounding the potential for a dip in tourism.



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