Nice post, Sophia! I agree with Arkesh that removing iterm-level markups and ensuring the same price in Whole foods is a strategic move and will significantly promote its app. I am just a little bit concerned with the scalability of its operating model. I didn’t see its financial data and not sure how profitable it is right now. More training and transferring from contracted workers to part-time or even full-time workers will significantly increase its operating cost and further eroding its operating margin. The acquisition cost of new customer is another concern of scalability. Once the app hits a critical mass, whether the app could still acquire new customer at a low cost still remains a question for me.
Interesting idea! I am surprised to see that McKinsey does not staff based on function or industry expertise. In other consulting firms, such as A.T. Kearney, we usually bring global function and industry experts to the project. But I guess the reason behind it is that McKinsey is large enough that on every single topic, McKinsey already has an expert regionally. I think if McKinsey has a project for an American company to enter into China, they will definitely staff across regions. Another complication is that staffing across regions will exacerbate the existing intense travelling, further contributing to the high attrition rate in the company.
Nice job, John! Linkedin deeply understands its difference with other social networks: the professional settings, and is deploying all its resources around this core competency to capture value. Another area that Linkedin is trying to monetize is online education, which I think it’s a great idea. It has already acquired Lynda.com, an online learning company to provide career skills training for its core users. This move complements why people use linkedin and addresses users’ unmet needs.