Exploring Nanotechnology in the Supply Chain Context

By now, most logistics and supply chain professionals have heard the word “nanotechnology” bandied about in a number of different contexts. The question then arises, how many of us really know what “nanotechnology” means and more importantly what impacts it may ultimately have on our companies and our profession?

As straight forward thinkers, people in supply chain logistics prefer simple, easy to understand answers and at the detail level, nanotechnology is anything but. So let’s cut through all the investment hype and scientific bafflegab to first develop a basic understanding and then review a number of potential impacts the growth and expansion of nanotech may have.

In layman’s terms, nanotechnology is… ” the precision placement, measurement, manipulation and modeling of sub-100 nanometer scale matter. ” In other words nanotech is about building really small things. So just how small are we talking here? Suffice it to say that a human hair is approximately 50,000 nanometers wide, and nano manufacturing is carried out on a scale 500 times smaller than that. Just sit back and think about that basic fact for a minute as we now begin to review the short, medium and long term impacts this emerging technology may generate.

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Matrix Retail: The Logistics of Customer Experience


At a previous NRF Shop.org Summit I saw a keynote address by Jamie Nordstrom on trends he saw coming in the online retail business. During his talk Jamie said there was a new dynamic emerging, people were describing using words like multi-channel and omni-channel. However in his view these words were not fully capturing the changes he saw coming in retail and a new word was needed, ‘maybe polychannel or something like that’.

After the presentation I had a quick meet and greet with Jamie in which I told him how much his presentation had resonated with me based on my past senior department store retail experience at Hudson’s Bay Company. I then said to him that I think I know the word he was looking for to describe the new dynamic and that was Matrix Commerce. His reaction was immediate and visceral ‘Yes, that’s it! Have you trademarked it?’

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“Life isn’t about Finding Yourself. Life is about CREATING Yourself.” #RonR

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The title of this post is a George Bernard Shaw quote I employ with my daughters in the hopes I will impress upon them, in a small way with a few words, what I will say here with many more words than their attention spans will allow. How many times have you heard that some person or other is on a quest to “find themselves?” Many times we hear it in relation to a young person starting out in life to find their purpose, or when an older person jokes about what they want to be when they “grow up.”

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You are what you share

WhatYouShare I have a friend who can always be counted on to have a great book recommendation handy. Another who can not only tell you the best available movie currently in theatres, but confidently stand behind his recommendations.

And some people are eager to share a link to an article or idea that’s worth reading.

Most people, though, hesitate.

“What if the other person doesn’t like it…?”

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“It’s Not Authentic if Everyone Loves You”


“It’s not authentic if everyone loves you.”

That is a message that every marketer needs to hear loud and clear, especially as the focus on social media gets stronger and recommendations carry more purchasing weight than ever before! The term “authenticity” gets used a lot now, but how many brands actually subscribe to being authentic, not just saying they are?

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The Number ONE Reason Marketers Fail When They Use Social Media


The number ONE reason many marketers fail when they try to use social media is that they DON’T take into account important traditional marketing lessons from the past—and I’m talking Plain Jane, Vanilla Manilla lessons that should be the bread and butter for any marketer. Social media doesn’t supplant traditional marketing practices and tenets. In fact, it enhances it when handled correctly.

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