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

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

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.

 

http://www.businessinsider.com/omnicom-tells-advertisers-to-shift-tv-spend-to-online-video-2014-10

 

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Young people lack skills for work...

Says this survey.

 

Hopefully this skills gap can be addressed.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29454002

Tesco in South Korea

Tesco’s incredible virtual store in Seoul:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJVoYsBym88

 

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.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28461134

 

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.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29438025

 

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Technology: A welcome return from an old frriend!

Microsoft’s Windows 10 is here and our old friend the START menu is back!

 

http://mashable.com/2014/09/30/microsoft-windows-10/?utm_cid=mash-com-Tw-main-link

 

Business Books That Changed the World... and inspired entrepreneurs

The likes of Warren Buffet and Donald Trump have been inspired by books that changed their life and gave them a head start in business:

 

http://edition.cnn.com/2014/09/30/business/best-business-books-entrepreneurs/

 

Google Glass in Action!

Edinburgh Airport staff are using Google Glass for real! The workers are using the innovative technology to deal with customer enquries.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-29425349

 

Ebay Demerger

Another good example of demerger… Ebay splitting off PayPal from its operations:

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29423251

 

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Innovate or Die!

 

Great article on how businesses need to keep moving forward or face extinction.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-28865268

 

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Rollable TVs

This was from earlier in the year, the advent of paper thin, rollable TVs:

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28245659

 

The arrival of the smartwatch

It has been long in the offing but now Samsung and LG have introduced their new gadget: the smartwatch.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28966866

 

Apple are due to enter the fray with the launch of their own smartwatch sometime next month.

 

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

De La Rue

A fascinating article looking at De La Rue, the company who has the lucky job of printing money!

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-27888665

 

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Polar Explorer Craig Mathieson

Today our pupils met Scottish Polar Explorer Craig Mathieson. Craig told of his experiences and ordeals as he led the first ever Scottish Antarctic expedition to the South Pole. He was incredibly interesting and motivating. Our pupils were enaged for the entire time and you could hear a pin drop when he told of some of his more difficult challenges… which he just brushed off with a steely determination.

 

 

I will not spoil the talk here, but I am sure you can find more about Craig and his charity Polar Academy at his website: http://mathiesonexplorer.com/

 

Changi Airport - Singapore

Some new features have been added to Changi Airport in Singapore as it is involved in the race for the title of the best airport in the world.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-26097348

 

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Great Quotes

 

“Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude. “

 

-Ralph Marston 

 

Monday, 9 June 2014

Business Speaker: Derek Wyllie

 

Today our new Higher Business Management pupils met Mr Derek Wyllie, Head of International Distribution for Rockport.

 

Derek has worked abroad for over 9 years and has lived and worked in Kuala Lumpur and now Hong Kong in various senior roles at major international corporations.

 

 

Derek spoke about his career and how he ended up in his current role, as well as a very interesting and entertaining look at some of the characteristics of markets in the Far East.

 

Our pupils were engaged and highly interested in Derek’s experiences and we had a lively Q & A at the end of both presentations… which is unusual! I said to Derek that receiving a number of questions at the end is a sign of a good presentation!

 

Hopefully, Derek’s story and his life experiences will inspire some of our pupils to broaden their horizons and think about the vast opportunities that lie in the Pacific Region.

 

 

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Seattle raises the minimum wage

The full article is here:

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-27674474

 

What are the implications then for small businesses?

 

It certainly seems good news for employees, but it could have a massive impact on smaller firms who may struggle with the increased labour costs.

Monday, 19 May 2014

Exam Day

Good luck today to all the pupils across Scotland sitting Higher Business Management and National 5 Business Management.

 

If you have studied and revised you will do well. Preparation is the key to success!

 

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Tesco's new smartphone

The UK’s biggest supermarket are diversifying once again:

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-27285787

Friday, 2 May 2014

Zero Hour Contracts

A ‘positive’ article about zero hours contracts. But the uncertainty they cause for employees surely cannot be good long term?

 

http://news.sky.com/story/1252478/are-zero-hour-contracts-easing-unemployment

 

Monday, 28 April 2014

Walmart facts that will amaze

And some astonishing facts about Walmart!

 

http://www.businessinsider.com/crazy-facts-about-walmart-2012-11?op=1

 

Facts about McDonald's

Some interesting facts about the World’s Biggest Fast Food restaurant.

 

http://www.businessinsider.com/19-facts-about-mcdonalds-that-will-blow-your-mind-2012-4?op=1

 

Hawick Knitwear

Watched the new Troubleshooter series with Lord Digby Jones. The episode concerning Hawick Knitwear was interesting, but not too entertaining.

 

http://www.drapersonline.com/news/hawick-knitwear-plots-global-growth-following-bbc-show/5059066.article#.U14WDkZwa5c

 

It did however highlight some issues which are taught in our lessons. The need for growth and expansion especially in the Japanese and Chinese market. It also briefly showed production processes and mentioned premium pricing.

 

It wasn’t a patch on the classic original series which starred Sir John Harvey Jones. I still remember seeing the Triang episode at University, and the poor beleaguered Sydney, the MD, who can’t come to terms with the future. It was the first time I had ever seen baffling diversification… a toy company involved in garden furniture! Oh how I wish I could show that to pupils! Perhaps with the wonder of Youtube I can.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

The End of the Oil Era?

Could it be that Solar Power will overtake the fossil fuels as the most common energy source shortly?

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/10755598/Global-solar-dominance-in-sight-as-science-trumps-fossil-fuels.html?fb

 

If this is the case, think of the implications for the Middle East in particular. Dubai are already well on the way to diversifying and preparing for life after the oil, as is Qatar. What of Saudi Arabia and other oil producing countries?

Revision syllabus for National 5 Business Management

I have put a revision syllabus for the exam on my relatively new N5 blog:

 

http://national5businessmanagement.blogspot.co.uk/

 

Business of Football - Why Manchester United had to sack David Moyes - Part 2

Following on from talk of the finances which played a part in the dismissal of David Moyes comes this article which implies the same:

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2611067/David-Moyes-sacking-saved-Manchester-United-financial-meltdown.html

 

Leadership Lessons from the Manchester United

Forbes magazine have identified Ten Key Leadership Lessons that should be learned from the crisis at Manchester United.

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/andrewcave/2014/04/22/ten-leadership-lessons-from-manchester-uniteds-hiring-and-firing-of-david-moyes/?utm_campaign=forbestwittersf&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social

 

It is great to come out with this sort of thing in hindsight, however, personally I do believe they needed someone more experienced and with a more glittering CV. I do also think that for both the Manager Sir Alex Ferguson and the CEO David Gill to stand down at the same time was perhaps misguided.

 

The situation at Manchester United is fascinating both students and myself due to the fact we went there in November for the Stadium Tour and received an excellent business presentation. The club are trying to be like a Fortune 500 company and perhaps they are now seeing all the inherent problems such size and expectation brings once the successful leader moves on.

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Business of Football - Why Manchester United had to sack David Moyes

It is no surprise to any of our school trip that went to Old Trafford in November to see that Manchester United have parted company with David Moyes. To finish outside the Champions League spots is just unthinkable. Not because United have a divine right to European football, but more in terms of the money situation.

Man Utd are a money machine. They are the world’s biggest sports brand. Okay so they still had a debt of £436.9 million as at 30 June 2012, but they have deals with AON bringing in £20 million a year, Nike (£23 million) and Chevrolet, another £28 million to name a few. But the Broadcasting Revenue the club makes from Europe and the Premier League (as well as endorsements because they could say they were the Champions is somewhere in the region of £60 million plus.

 

However expenses and costs go up to, as witnessed by Wayne Rooney signing an incredible £300,000 a week deal.

 

Basically, a business like United need to maintain their success in order to keep the income streams coming in. After a poor year like they have had on the pitch, no other big firm would keep things they way they were. Imagine if Coca Cola dropped from being number one to seventh? It is unthinkable. Or if Apple had a terrible year of sales for iPhones and iPads? The CEO would step down. Football at this level is no different.

 

And I am sorry to say, it is the financial side of football which has done for Moyes. Managers cannot and indeed will not be given the time that perhaps they need to build a winning team. Instant success is needed by the big clubs and in Manchester United’s case, the big businesses.

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