The Secret Ingredient For a Successful Career Change





by Winnie Jiang

Why some people seamlessly switch occupations while others struggle to reinvent their careers.


A stable job offers more than just a pay cheque; it provides a sense of belonging, self-worth and purpose. However, job stability is increasingly at risk. Technological advancements and economic shifts are challenging established roles, compelling workers to acquire new skills, change occupations or even re-evaluate their career paths to stay relevant.

By 2030, a significant portion of the global workforce – ranging from 3 to 14 percent, equivalent to 75 to 375 million workers – will need to switch occupations and learn new skills, according to aMcKinsey report. In advanced economies like the United States and Japan, this figure rises significantly to 32 percent and 46 percent, respectively.

Navigating career disruption can be particularly difficult for individuals who strongly identify with their profession and consider it a fundamental part of who they are. In contrast, research suggests that those who hold “multiple identities” are more resilient in the face of job loss, as they can use other identities as a protective buffer. In other words, when their work identity is threatened after being laid off, they can draw on other identities, like being a parent or community member, to derive a sense of self-worth and successfully change careers.

However, my recent research with Amy Wrzesniewski from The Wharton School reveals a different pattern. We focused on the field of journalism, which has experienced widespread job cuts and closures. Although all former journalists in our study considered their profession as central to their identity, there was a notable difference in their responses to losing their job. Some found it challenging to recover, while others quickly rebounded and reinvented their careers.

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The Three Next-Generation Marketing Skills You Need




by Wolfgang Ulaga and Christoph Senn

Companies must secure “killer marketing and sales skills” in a dynamic landscape where commercial competencies rapidly become obsolete.



The marketing landscape is undergoing a remarkable transformation, driven by the rapid expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT). In 2019, the estimated number of IoT-connected devices stood at 8.6 billion, but by 2030, this figure is projected to soar to 29.4 billion. This exponential growth is blurring the boundaries between products, services, data and software, heralding a significant shift in how marketing is perceived and executed.

On September 21st, INSEAD’s Marketing and Sales Excellence Initiative (MSEI) hosted a members-only event in Fontainebleau, France, titled “Next-Generation Marketing Skills”. Speakers at this seminar delved into two pivotal inquiries: What are the competencies required for next-generation marketing? And how can Marketing & Sales professionals best collaborate with Human Resources and Learning & Development teams so their firms acquire, grow, and retain the essential talent and skills? 

What’s happening in the marketing landscape?

The burgeoning array of IoT devices offers both blessings and curses for marketers. On the bright side, it presents a golden opportunity to enhance value propositions and build trust with customers. However, the complexity of managing and leveraging this ecosystem will inevitably pose challenges, making it somewhat of a curse. Moreover, as customers become increasingly aware of the growing number of sensors in everyday devices, their expectations of value from marketers are set to reach new heights.

Internally, the pressure on marketing teams will also mount. As investments in IoT marketing strategies increase, business leaders, including CEOs, will demand a clear demonstration of the return on investment (ROI). The famous line, “Show me the money,” will echo through boardrooms, underscoring the need for marketers to prove the value of their initiatives. 

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Leaders, Make Curiosity the Core of Your Organizational Culture




by John Coleman



Organizational culture is a remarkable competitive advantage. McKinsey & Company, for example, has found that top quartile cultures outperform median cultures by 60% — and bottom quartile cultures by 200% — and that those company’s cultures are both difficult for competitors to replicate and allow the organization to better adapt to changing circumstances. These findings are echoed in the research of Alex Edmans of London Business School, who found similar outperformance among companies with exceptional cultures.

Great corporate cultures are not just good for performance, but for the flourishing and engagement of the people who work in them. In my own work, I focus frequently on the need for strong culture, its components, and how to craft an organization’s culture to deliver greater meaning and purpose. But oft overlooked is the central role that curiosity plays in shaping these norms. To unlock the potential of their institutions and the people within them, great leaders need to demonstrate consistent curiosity about their employees, customers, their own roles, and the changes occurring in their institutions over time.

Curiosity about employees

Leaders must be curious about the values and motivations of their employees in shaping and maintaining a corporate culture. Organizations are a collection of the mindsets, attitudes, and values of the people that work within them. Founders and leaders have great influence on the types of people who join an organization and the values they bring with them. But by tapping the collective intelligence of the group, organizations can seek to be truly distinctive. That requires even brilliant leaders to display curiosity toward those with whom they work.

In the early days of Whole Foods, for example, founder John Mackey elected to engage his entire company in shaping their mission and values — an effort spurred by his desire to tap the collective intelligence of his people and build a “flat” organization where everyone was engaged. The document that resulted in 1985, their “Declaration of Interdependence,” survives to this day and was fundamentally shaped by employees from top to bottom. Similarly, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio famously created the principles by which Bridgewater is managed through an open-source document that allowed employees to challenge existing precepts, offer up new ones, and collectively codify their model of success (a process I experienced while working there one summer).

Whether through walking the halls and talking to people directly, formally surveying employees, or engaging them in focus groups about the tenets of culture, every leader has the same opportunity to display curiosity in shaping mission, vision, and values.

Curiosity about customers

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In praise of the middle manager



by Diane Brady


People quit their bosses. They quit for plenty of other reasons, too, but feelings matter, and work is personal. That’s been true for years, but the importance of developing great managers has become more urgent as workforce participation in the U.S. remains below pre-pandemic levels, with only 62.7% of the working-age population currently in the labor force, while the need for employees to be engaged and constantly learning has increased.

The problem? Good bosses—and the people they manage—are getting less help than ever, as the practice of developing capable leaders gets less focus in a changing world of work.

“The basic conditions for the American employee are that this doesn’t work,” says Bill Schaninger, an author, consultant and senior partner emeritus at McKinsey & Co. He spoke with Forbes in the video above about the value of middle managers and the book he co-authored with two McKinsey colleagues, Power To The Middle.

Too often, companies focus on the wrong levers in trying to boost employee engagement. A raise isn’t enough, especially when higher wages often coincide with higher inflation. Flexibility can help—but disengaged workers can feel even less connected to their companies if they work from home. The nature of the work matters, but doing data entry or dancing for Beyonce is typically decided at the time you’re hired.

Investing in Leadership?
What is critical and controllable is the quality of leadership, Schaninger says, from those for whom managing someone is a new muscle to veteran managers trying to inspire people in a new world. These are the carriers of culture, the coaches, the critics, the often unsung catalysts for success. “Good leaders also help people see their purpose,” he says. “They understand the vision. They know how to communicate it. And they know how to help the individuals come together as a team.”

Their value is sometimes lost on leaders who may think success is self-made. Over the past year, the value of “managers” have incurred the wrath of Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg and others—ridiculed as bureaucrats and soft-skills peddlers who do little for the bottom line. Continue reading

New Opportunity





Senior Vice President, 


Healthcare Business Unit Leader


We are seeking an individual who has:

  • Experience building and leading a Healthcare BU (Payor/Provider/LS/Med Tech) …. Practice today is ~$20M and need to grow to over $100M in next couple of years
  • Strategy:  Evaluate and define “go to market” strategy
  • Team Build:  Evaluate and build team: Go to market / BD / Sales and Delivery
  • Organic and M&A:  Build via leveraging existing MSA’s , capture new clients and identify / acquire “tuck in” acquisitions
  • Builder with strong sales orientation
  • Location:  East Coast (NJ preference)

If you are interested or know someone who might be interested, please let me know.

Thank you!

Larry Janis

Managing Partner I Integrated Search Solutions Group