November 2010 Archives
P&G - Changing consumer behaviour through Eco-Design
At the CBI Climate Change Summit in November Irwin Lee, Vice President, Proctor and Gamble (P&G), illustrated how good design was driving behavioural change amongst consumers in fast moving consumer goods.
Mr Lee outlined the scale and scope of P&G operations as the largest consumer group in the world selling 50 leading brands including Ariel, Fairy, Pampers, Flash, IAMS pet food, Duracell, Lenor. They had 130 manufacturing facilities worldwide making $23bn turnover and selling their brands in 180 countries.
P&G decided to prioritise energy consumption and water use focussing on Ariel in the first instance. They found the vast majority of consumers were more demanding and more savvy, although a sizeable segment also wanted to behave sustainably by lowering their carbon footprint.
At the CBI Climate Change Summit in November Richard Lambert explained that there was still a big opportunity for more businesses to use design to change people's behaviours and buying habits. He stated, "the process of capturing the public's imagination has hardly started. There is no sense of excitement.... Not enough breakthroughs to excite consumers for them to drive the market.
"Businesses need to demonstrate that switching will benefit families and improve quality of life by making it real for them."
He added, "Martin Luther King didn't get to where he got by saying 'I have a nightmare'. There was a sense amongst consumers that they simply were not going to buy more expensive products just because they would have a better carbon footprint. Whilst white goods companies were doing things differently and cars were improving, consumers remained sceptical."
'Nasty' Nigel Lythgoe. Piers Morgan. Simon Cowell.
This contemporary collection of smuggards has proved it's OK to be objectionable. Acceptable to be aggressive. Cool to be a cad. But why have their ostensibly toxic media personas prevented them from being pelted with baked bean tins each time they walked into Waitrose?
Truth. In the realm of reality, this trinity of gleamingly-toothed telly titans have made millions by telling the truth. If a contestant looks like they've been dressed in the dark by a hook-handed dwarf, and sing like they've spent their entire life gargling with hedgehogs, then viewers want at least one person to say it like it is.
Sometimes though, in the world of PR and marketing, the truth hurts. In the case of Nadine Coyle's career, the truth didn't just hurt - it kicked it flush in the mouth, repeatedly, until it was expelling teeth through its bum.
"Euro steady" run morning headlines today following 'agreement' between European finance ministers in Brussels on heading up a 85bn euro bail out for Ireland.
That the Irish government have in the end welcomed the deal despite seemingly grumbling over the rate to be charged is hardly that surprising given that they had absolutely no choice.
That was the month that almost was! Not that much doubt that November 2010 will probably go down as a month that both the big two western commercial aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus will likely care to forget.
I'm forced to comment on something other than the energy sector for a change and let off a little steam over the Royal Wedding - don't worry though; ranting is good for you, apparently.
There are two schools of thought whether Britain should play a significant role helping to bail Ireland from the current debt mess. The first and what I will call the primary view led by UK Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor of Exchequer George Osborne is that Britain needs Ireland to be stable and strong. Surely no-one in their right mind could possibly disagree with that.
Ian Callum, Director of Design, Jaguar Cars is clear that design is the trump card - not only for Jaguar but for the nation.
"It is my firm belief that design and manufacture could be the answer to our economic problems given the intellectual and creative capacity represented in that."
He believes passionately that we can design ourselves out of recession.
"These days people do not simply buy what they need, they buy what they like. We are now in the privileged position that we are able to buy what we like and design is key to that, but some leaders in industry still see design as simply the styling that is the 'icing on top of the cake'".
I've just met Dubai's answer to Birmingham Chamber chief Jerry Blackett.
However, apart from their undeniable good humour, there is little Jerry shares in common with this agreeable bear of a man.
Firstly, Jerry runs his empire from a slightly tired concrete affair off the Hagley Road in Edgbaston, while Omar Khan's office is on the upper floors of an ultra modern oyster-shaped headquarters overlooking the main creek with the world's tallest building - the 828m high Burj Khalifa - towering in the distance.
There was a fascinating public lecture last Thursday at the Birmingham Business School by Sir Dominic Cadbury, on the recent Kraft takeover of Cadbury.
Of particular interest, the former CEO of Cadbury and current Chancellor of the University of Birmingham was quite critical of the current takeover regime, arguing that a case could be made for (a) raising the bar on the proportion of votes needed in a takeover situation to secure control and (b) restricting the rights of short term investors like hedge funds to have a say in such takeover cases.