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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Peter Day at Middlesex University

Peter Day (born 1947) is a broadcaster on BBC Radio 4 and the BBC World Service. He attended Lincoln School, at the time a boys-only grammar school, from 1957-64 as a boarder. His father was a manager with Midland Bank (became HSBC in 1999) in Lincolnshire (Horncastle and Gainsborough). He studied English at St Edmund Hall, Oxford. He was trained on the International Publishing Corporation (Daily Mirror Group) newspaper training scheme in south Devon. He worked at the Daily Record from 1970-4 in Glasgow.

Yesterday (November 16,2010), Peter Day was at Middlesex University  as part of distinguished lecture series and to be honest, it was really enjoyable. The name of the session was "The world turned upside down and he started the discussion with soundtrack of "World turned upside down". Peter went on to talk about the panoramic view at Ching Dao which was the source of epiphany. The view included crates of raw materials(iron ore) that were on one end of the visibility spectrum and on the other end, there were crates of finished goods. This woke him up to the fact that the China was on their way back to world dominance. He mentioned that it was 'painful' to see it. I hope it was a purely personal opinion because one billion Chinese people surely will not think that the resurgence of China is painful.

Peter spoke about Peter Drucker and his Nine shift. According to him, 9 important changes happen in the first 20 years of every century. It happened and even though we were not alive to see it, a LOT of people and it has been documented. According to both Peters, this is going to happen again -- it is just that we do not know about it yet. His school of thought is of the opinion that Internet in he first 20 years of this century is going to change how the century will shape up eventually.

"Learn from history", he says "Because the future is in the past".
Interesting insight. I would say.

Peter went on to talk about how enhancing customer experience is going to be the differentiator of all companies going forward. This, by default, entails offering the customer things that are not expected and thus by definition is free. (He quoted the example of Nordstrom) .Milton Friedman one said, "There is no such thing as a free lunch". So, my concern is whether it will be taken advantage of by customers and start demanding more. Is this sustainable?

What are your thoughts?

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