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I am lucky to be based in the Netherlands at the moment, in my opinion one of the most sustainable countries in the world.
Right now I am researching what this country is doing in terms of sustainability, and I came across this wonderfully laid out and well written piece on the Dutch government's web site.
13 2013 | Viewed: 1 605 | Opinions | Read full
Life by hacking

Nothing can get compared to that feeling of superiority when you are living through a eureka moment, having resolved a tech issue with one of your latest gadgets.

My latest achievements include installing Photon browser on my iPad (it works with flash!), disabling annoying LED indicator on Blackberry and discovery that I can forward voicemails from my work VOIP phone to my email. I am not a big fan of telephone conversations.

21 2013 | Viewed: 1 106 | Opinions | Read full
Survival of the coolest

The recession has now lasted for how long exactly? I am not the world renown economist but if I remember correctly I started hearing about recession and crisis somewhere in 2007, and this has been on-going since. So I assume we have not exited it yet.

11 2012 | Viewed: 1 095 | Opinions | Read full
Legislation for its own sake

I feel for the retail credit customers, in particular credit cardholders, in Kazakhstan, who have to collect too many papers to apply for a credit card.

This is dictated by legislation, many papers have to be obtained from various governmental authorities - credit bureau, which could facilitate this process exists, but is not helping. Applying and getting a credit card in Kazakhstan takes anywhere between 1-2 months. That is if you are approved, as despite all the papers that they collect, most banks' scoring systems remain extremely risk averse.

17 2012 | Viewed: 1 583 | Opinions | Read full
New industrial revolution, or dreams do come true

I am not a big fan ofStar Trek, but I like the idea of the replicator - a microwave like device which produces food from scratch, no action required. As soon as such replicators appear - and I believe this will happen in my lifetime - I will transform my kitchen into a walk in wardrobe... Communities likeShapeways,Kickstarter andQuirky are making this future more real.

21 2012 | Viewed: 1 559 | Opinions | Read full
Simple is genius... but not profitable

When I was a student, I remember how we were introduced to the western management concepts like KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) and were told that the best products and services are the ones, which are simple.

18 2012 | Viewed: 1 321 | Opinions | Read full
Interesting numbers

Those who work in retail banking, in particular credit cards, must have noticed results of the Russia's National Financial Research Agency (NFRA) which in Russian mass media were published under headlines like '71% of Russians would have refused a credit card offer'.

19 2011 | Viewed: 1 565 | Opinions | Read full
Marketing in Wonderland

I've stopped reading the Marketing Week (UK edition) - same authors, boring articles. I follow marketing and advertising blogs instead, most of them on Facebook. Saying that, recent article in the Marketing Week (which I linked to from a blog) titled "Fleeing to fantasy" spurred my interest http://www.marketingweek.co.uk/analysis/cover-stories/fleeing-to-fantasy/3026498.article?cmpid=MWE01&cmptype=editorial.

20 2011 | Viewed: 1 503 | Opinions | Read full
Escape the City: Working in financial sector is no longer cool

The UK financial sector remains one with the highest renumeration. Salaries are not too different to pre-crisis levels, though their growth lags behind inflation. Bonuses are paid again, though without the glory of the former days and behind closed doors, just like they are spent - the City boys parties are not as loud and public as before. The state raised taxes, cut spending - the country is saving. Bankers and financiers are generally blamed for the financial crisis. Admitting you are a banker or work in the financial sector in the social setting these days is at the risk of getting the looks and catching mentions of a 'soul sold to devil'. In the average Brit's mind banking has been forever equalled to occultism.

23 2011 | Viewed: 1 220 | Opinions | Read full
The New Rules of Marketing and PR

I have decided I need to know about the new rules of digital marketing from the experts. I have done it the old style and got 3 top selling books on new digital marketing from amazon. Having skipped through them, I have established the favourite which I am reading this very minute. It's titled The New Rules of Marketing and PR and is by David Meerman Scott, one of the experts in how it's done in the new digital world. I ran into an excerpt which I thought I'd share in case you have not yet had a chance to read the book. Based on my experience with PR in the last couple of years, I found it to be absolutely true. See what you think.

25 2011 | Viewed: 1 235 | Opinions | Read full
Development 2.0

I am surprised to hear complaints on employers saving and hence not providing any development opportunities to their employees. I am surprised to hear that trainings are the only way of professional development. I am surprised to hear that trainings are expensive, take loads of time and you never know who will be there. Hence, forget it. Too much work anyway.

18 2010 | Viewed: 1 394 | Opinions | Read full
Chilean miracle

Chilean miners buried underground became a story that dominated the world's attention. Large international broadcasters carefully monitored the story's development. CNN spent a couple of hours a day to miner updates - interviews with relatives, videos made by miners, their biographies, etc.

1 2010 | Viewed: 1 370 | Opinions | Read full
Mission Impossible

Interesting observation. Recently we have tried to deliver some merchandise from the UK to several Eastern European markets. We had no difficulties with delivery or customs for most countries. Only twocountries turned out to be a surprising exception where we experienced problems both with delivery and customs - Kazakhstan and Russia.

7 2010 | Viewed: 4 961 | Opinions | Read full
No PRoblem

Recently I've been hearing too much about PR, even for a marketer. I either face a PR task, and hence have to deal with the PR department, or I am invited to a workshop dedicated to growing role of PR, or myboss wonders what our PR strategy is in my presence, and to top it up, marketing editions abroad are writing about apparently changing role of PR in light of post recession marketing budget cuts.

21 2010 | Viewed: 1 571 | Opinions | Read full
Money back

It's a good time for Kazakhstan consumers and, in particular, Kazakhstan credit cardholders. The first cashback credit card appeared on the Kazakhstan credit card market (Blue from American Express by Kazkom). Cashback is a foreign word for Kazakhstan and when literally translated means "money back". The service is unknown to many of our customers, though in my opinion, the existence of cashback cards is a good indicator of development of the retail bank market. Out of interest, check how many cashback cards there are in Russia. In the western countries, cashback cards have long since taken a strong position in the market, wallets and hearts of their holders.

9 2010 | Viewed: 1 640 | Opinions | Read full
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