Publisher & Editor in Chief : Jason Attard
Design & Layout: Effective Marketing Ltd
Sales and Marketing: Cheri Anne Vassallo
Technical Editor: Joe Vella Bonnici
Graphic Designer : Stephen Farrugia
Printed version: Progress Press
Linguist: Charles Caruana Carabez
Photograph: Charles Calleja, Foto-ish the Studio
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Every time a proud Dad walks into a computer shop to buy a laptop for his son or daughter to help them with their studies, and indeed whenever machines are added into the organisational IT infrastructure, there are a few things regarding the base operational software that ought to be considered.
The first major unknown, even though the Dad’s subconscious is perfectly aware of this, is that this laptop’s major contribution to his child’s education will be restricted to hand-toeye coordination, and shortly thereafter expanded slightly to apply this finely-honed hand-to-eye coordination also to social skills, via buzzwords like google, facebook, twitter, skype, facetime, and a few others. One other unknown, for most Dads at least, is whether his child’s laptop should be running one version of Windows or another. Even more fundamentally, he may be wondering “what is this Windows anyway?”...
Augmented reality, or AR, is finally finding its way in our daily lives. Particularly for the new generations who don’t know life without computers and whose lives revolve around being constantly connected to Smart Phones, Tablets, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, video games, and more, AR offers a serious opportunity for brands to access these important consumers. Augmented reality combines the physical with the digital worlds, giving users and brands the ability to connect even further with each other, during and after making a purchase.
Creativity is either the result of thinking outside the box or stumbling over a gold nugget you thought was plain rock. In latter days, it used to be called inventiveness, or originality, and there were - perhaps there still are - people who call themselves inventors, giving the impression that they work 8 hours a day inventing things.
There is nothing wrong with dreaming. Many great business ideas and innovations started with a dream. Many people dream, and do nothing. Some do not dream at all, because of various reasons to do with lack of selfbelief, disillusionment, and a plethora of other reasons. Some people dream, try and fail, again for a variety of reasons. The clever part is when to stop dreaming and actually do something about it. And possibly the best recommendation is to have a very realistic grasp of your context. By being very aware of what you are surrounded with, you can also build a strong case for your idea. This could be some gap in the market, or a need. You should also have a good reality check of what you can actually do, with respect to the resources you have available, or can obtain. If you are working within an organisation, part of your reality check would involve knowing what type of organisation it is, how entrepreneurial it is, how much it encourages entrepreneurship – or intrapreneurship, in this case - what policies and strategies it has, and so on.
Entrepreneurs are the first people who generally question the status quo, and try to bend or break rules which they feel stand in the way of an improved situation. Breaking rules always leads to consequences, whether positive or negative. If the environment you are working in does not allow such behaviour, then you’d better know what to expect.
As a seller, I’m sure the last thing in the world you want to do is to make your job even more difficult. But the truth is, many of you are doing just that - all the time and without even knowing it.
This past week I was talking to one seller about a particularly challenging sales issue he kept running into. As it turns out, he was his own worst enemy.
From humble beginnings can come many great things. Angelo Xuereb must surely look back at the last 60 years of his life and wonder how he overcame so many obstacles with such endurance. His inspiring autobiography at times reads like a Hollywood blockbuster. Hailing from a devout Roman Catholic family of eleven children born in a span ofthirteen years, Angelo Xuereb transformeda small loan from his then-girlfriend into amultimillion-euro group of companies, AXHoldings.
The Executive met with Angelo recently to ask some questions about his life and began by asking about the relationship he had with his father, and his upbringing.
Food has a way with us humans which makes us enjoy doing business more when it is accompanied by a lunch or dinner. Try trading with the most difficult, morose person on earth and you can rest assured it will be a tough, probably useless exercise. Shift the said person to a restaurant, give them good food, good wine and good conversation and voilà the same persons are now mellow, sweet-natured and all ready to sign or at least hear you out. If the same talk happened in their lugubrious office the only thing you canbe sure of is that you’d be out quicker than you can say lunch. Life is like that: food makes us more receptive and more accommodating. So read on and book your next table at a good restaurant.
Being rather in love with food, drink and whiling away time at cafés and dining tables does not make me the best judge of such occasions and ways. But I definitely think that business done round a dining-table is best and more congenial to getting better results all round. I can’t say that every time I have been wined and dined I just waxed lyrical but it did help me look at life in a better way.
Victor Calleja meets Reynir Gretarsson of Creditinfo. He finds out how it all started way back in 1997 in an island on the periphery of Europe. From Iceland to Malta was not the most logical of progressions but the Malta adventure proved successful enough to convince the company to expand into other bigger territories. It is now a small but a significant player in the field of risk management and info exchange.
It’s a strange fact how small Malta is as a nation: so small that to some we might seem insignificant. Some do not know we exist and if they have heard of us, they have no clue where we are. But as a force in the financial services world we have become quite significant. We are seen as a good competitor to other jurisdictions and we offer a good product with a good and, to some, enviable infrastructure. Add to this our usually mild climate, a dependable and well-educated workforce, a population that in its majority speaks good English; and Malta becomes an interesting proposition. Much work has gone into achieving this state of affairs. One company that realised Malta’s potential some time ago is Creditinfo, which has had a presence in Malta since way back in 2002.
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