Warby Parker IS Market Oriented!

Hola Todos!

It’s too easy to find companies who are not market orientated (Yahoo, Twitter, Intel); the same cannot be said for those few firms who are outward-looking and thoroughly understand how to be externally orientated towards the market. (A complete description of market orientation can be found here).

While listening to the Re/Code Decode podcast with Kara Swisher, I am convinced that Warby Parker with their co-CEOs Dave Gilboa and Neil Blumenthal have created a truly market orientated company. Eyeglasses are an analog product from the analog world, however, co-CEOs Dave and Neil completely understand their customers, found ways to create value using digital technologies vis-à-vis their direct competitors and run a flat organization with incredibly strong inter-firm communication. I mean how theory Y is it to have co-CEOs!

This is something to check out today – along with Re/Code’s other excellent podcasts Re/code Media with Peter Kafka, Too Embarrassed to Ask with Lauren Goode and Kara Swisher, and finally Re/Code Reply.

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Director, MBA Program

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

 

Did we just see the future of Apple? Project Liam?

Hola Todo! How are we doing?

Of all the interesting stories from what seemed like a low-key Apple keynote event, I thought Liam – the iPhone recycling robot – was the most interesting. Liam was introduced by Lisa Jackson, VP of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives, during the CSR portion early in the keynote. (See major Mashable feature here).

Liam can disassemble an iPhone 6s in 11 seconds, meaning the 29-armed warehouse-sized robot can recycle 350 iPhones an hour or potentially, 1.2 million iPhones a year (although Liam doesn’t work on weekends). While some are skeptical that the Liam prototype “doesn’t scale,” is limited to the 6s, or is too small of a percentage of Apple 230 million iPhones sold last year to be meaningful, I think this a classic head fake in Apple’s future plans.

In sum, Apple has not been in the final assembly business for their products in a long time (except the super high end – low volume Mac Pro). If Liam can disassemble an iPhone in 11 seconds, how long will it take it to assemble an iPhone? Is the Liam prototype more about Apple’s environmental plans or more about Apple learning to manufacture again? Apple can dramatically reduce their carbon footprint in the supply chain if they do final assembly in their major markets instead of shipping everything out of China. Don’t forget that Apple is also working on a car. Is the robotics and engineering that when into Liam something that can be applied to autos?

It may be the case that we will be able to look back at that 3-minute preview in the keynote and a 60 second video and say “Yup, Apple can do that…they showed us that Liam prototype 3 or 4 years ago.”

Something to think about today…

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Director, MBA Program

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University